Clayton State deejays rock the vote

By Daniel Silliman


Bryan Byrd has his election music all lined up.

Spinning and scratching CDs in the student radio station at Clayton State University on election day, he knows the sound he's seeking.

He doesn't just want to rock the vote, he also wants to Rap, Pop, Hip-hop, Indie and Reggae the vote.

This is the election marathon. This is "real versatile radio."

He plays Tupac Shakur's "Keep Your Head Up," Marvin Gaye's "What's Going On," and Dave Matthew's "American Baby."

Out of the big black speakers on the university grass, Tupac raps, "He had me feelin' like black was tha thing to be/ and suddenly/ the ghetto didn't seem so tough."

Matthews sings he's worried "we've lost the way," and urges, "stay American baby."

Though the legendary rapper and the acoustic pop artist are radically different, the Clayton State deejay says they both have that sound he wants.

"Patriotism," Byrd says. "They're songs showing patriotism. No matter what, that's what this is about."

The deejays on the Internet radio station are doing a marathon broadcast, pushing songs, free speech and voting. For 12 hours, the commercial-free station was live with VOTE: "Voices Open To Everyone."

The message is pretty non-partisan, but still energized by the election. David Wilson -- who's known as Mr. Wilson on the radio -- says the music is meant to "keep the spirits up."

He got on the radio this morning to encourage people to vote, even if they had to wait in line and miss class.

"That two hours, or whatever," Wilson says, "that can control your future. If you don't control your future, you may not be able to sit in that class."

In the afternoon, as Byrd continued to spin "real versatile radio," Wilson was pushing people to get out and vote, even using the giant speaker system to ask passing people if they had voted yet.

Wilson says he's glad to see a massive turnout, and he's glad this election has really excited people, but he wants to push people for more.

"Vote because you really care, every time," the deejay says. "Stop the problem before it starts."

Clayton State radio can be heard at http://studentorg.clayton.edu/csir.