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Arts & Entertainment - Campus & Community

Westphal Dean Plays the Songs of His Life on the WKDU Airwaves

May 8, 2019

Dean Allen Sabinson of the Westphal College of Media Arts & Design appeared on WKDU on May 2 to play some of the songs that have influenced his life.
Dean Allen Sabinson of the Westphal College of Media Arts & Design appeared on WKDU on May 2 to play some of the songs that have influenced his life.

What do the Beatles, Barbara Streisand and Citizen Cope have in common?

They were all included on a playlist chosen by Dean Allen Sabinson of Drexel University’s Westphal College of Media Arts & Design that was played on air on WKDU 91.7 FM, Drexel's free-format, student-run radio station.

Sabinson appeared on WKDU for a two-hour set in which he played the songs that reflected the “journey of [his] interest in music over the years,” which ranged in genre from reggae, Latin music, classic rock and soul. In between songs, he also talked about his experiences in the entertainment industry before he came to Drexel, where he had been President of Production at Miramax Film and held senior positions at ABC, NBC and Showtime, among others.

“Long ago in a faraway land, I was a college DJ and I’ve never stopped loving music,” said Sabinson. “WKDU has been associated with the Westphal College for many years and we’ve had numerous students working in the station on the management side and as DJs. WKDU is one of the longest-standing and most successful college radio stations in the U.S. WKDU really has a tremendous reputation and loyal listeners, and I’m delighted, and possibly a bit surprised, that they keep letting me on the air to share stories of my connections to a whole variety of musical forms.”

As previously reported by DrexelNow, Sabinson had first appeared on WKDU in 2017 to play some of his favorite songs alongside then-LeBow College of Business Dean Frank Linnehan, PhD. This time, however, Sabinson was the sole DJ and appeared on air with Chris Burrell, WKDU’s electronic music director and an adjunct professor in the LeBow College of Business.

“I recently heard that the result of good work is more work!” said Burrell about Sabinson returning as a guest DJ. “That’s exactly what the case was with Allen DJing on KDU. He did a fantastic job his first time on air, seemed to be having fun, and had a wealth of musical knowledge to share! Bringing him back on air was a no-brainer and now it seems that we might be getting some other music-savvy deans and faculty members involved in these types of sessions in the future.”

Some of the songs he played included:

  • Bands he wished he’s seen
    • “Love Me Do” by the Beatles (his father, a Broadway publicist and press agent, had represented the band on their first U.S. tour but Sabinson went to go see a different show that night)
    • “Son’s Gonna Rise” by Citizen Cope
  • Bands he’s seen
    • “My Generation” by the Who
    • “Not Fade Away” by the Rolling Stones
    • “New York City Blues” by the Yardbirds
  • Artists he or his father worked with in the entertainment industry
    • “Boy in the Bubble” by Paul Simon
    • “Miss Marmelstein” by Barbara Streisand
  • Bands and artists he likes
    • Somewhere Over The Rainbow” by Israel Kamakawiwo'ole
    • “Get Up Stand Up” by Bob Marley
    • “Rock Steady” by Aretha Franklin

If music-savvy Drexel faculty members are interested in following in Sabinson's footsteps and playing something a little different than what you normally hear on the radio, please reach out to electronic@wkdu.org to learn more about this guest DJ opportunity!

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