I distinctly remember the first time I ever tuned into NU107.
I was 15, in third year high school. I had a crush on a boy who was into rock music. (If you’re reading this – oh shuddup.) I was a typical girl who liked what her classmates liked: Mariah Carey, Boyz II Men, etc. So this boy liked rock music, and he mentioned NU107, so okay, one Sunday at home, I tuned in.
I heard Jimi Hendrix.
I have never heard him before – or any real rock, classic rock, any kind of rock for that matter – and it was LOUD to me. Loud! I quickly shut it off and thought, “What the hell is this shit?”
The boy didn’t last, but NU did.
In high school, I learned how to play guitar. NU played my favorites. It started with pop/rock (Dave Matthews Band), and alternative (Matchbox 20). The more I listened to NU, the wider my tastes got. I started listening to local acts. I rocked out at high school concerts by Wolfgang, Eraserheads, Sandwich, and Fatal Posporos.
I went to college. I started learning how to drive. I couldn’t drive without music. (I was actually in a major car accident once because I was switching discs in my Discman, but at least I don’t have NU to blame for that.) My radio was now exclusively tuned to 107.5 FM. I would text in song requests before driving so I could hear them on the way. In fact, before NU had the “text in” feature, I would call in sometimes. I was on air twice with DJ Zach: once when I shared that I wanted Dave Matthews Band to play at my wedding, and the other because I knew the answer to why farts stank in the air. (Not sexy, I know, but I knew the answer, goddammit!) I interviewed him for school once, but I didn’t tell him who I was. Obviously.
While in college, I joined PinoyExchange and became active in the Music forum. I met future best friend Joon, who invited me to audition for his band. My first band! I joined. I bought my first electric guitar. I jammed. I would join more bands over the next 10 years. I was now listening to NU107 exclusively. I remember the thrill I got each time our band’s name would be said on radio (“Tonight at Saguijo, it’s… [pause, embarrassed mumble] We Kick Ass For The Lord.”).
I started meeting indie musicians. I would get all giddy when I heard their songs on NU. I directed a music video for The Purplechickens, and the song got decent airplay. I would vote in the polling booths for the NU Rock Awards. I went to the Rock Awards once, in 2005. It was crazy, and fun.
I went through a breakup in 2006. I stopped listening to the radio, because everything sounded sad and I couldn’t take it. I switched to CDs and MP3s instead. But there are only so many times you could listen to the same happy albums over and over. I remember being in the car one day and tuning into NU107 after a long time – that was the day that I knew I was okay.
It’s now 2010. I’ve stopped being in bands. I’m selling my guitar stuff. But NU is still my default radio station of choice. I found out that the Home of NU Rock as we know it is shutting down this week. I am listening to them now, all day, hearing the DJs bid their goodbyes. The old DJs arrive, and I know their names. On Sunday, at 11:59 pm, they sign off.
Thank you, NU107, for being the soundtrack of my life.