Niki Dakota

Music Director and Host, Excursions

Born a Hoosier, but only living there in spurts, Niki Dakota spent much of her young life moving around the United States with her archeologist mother. Throughout these years, there was always a ukulele somewhere close at hand. By the time the family settled in Cincinnati, Ohio, Ms. Dakota found herself in pursuit of professional music-making as she headed-up the Alterna-Folk band, Plow On Boy. In the course of her first live radio interview to promote the band, Niki’s keen excitedness manifest itself in extreme chattiness. At the conclusion of the segment, the DJ closed the mic and said, “You need to be in radio."  That was in 1990.

In 2002, Niki’s radio career brought her to WYSO where she continues to enjoy a love of music and shares that love with the Miami Valley weekdays on Excursions.

Ways to Connect

www.kidwithcamera.com

On the three-year anniversary of their Just Rivers album, Beams traveled from Toronto all the way to WYSO for a live performance on Excursions ahead of their Yellow Springs performance at Peaches. The band chatted with WYSO Music Director Niki Dakota about songwriting, recording and more.

Beams will perform at Peaches Grill in Yellow Springs on Saturday, May 14th.

On May 13th and 14th, the Dayton Circus Creative Collective will celebrate Side Show 11, a music and art festival at the Yellow Cab Building.  Over 40 musicians will perform on three stages and the Yellow Cab's galleries will feature works from over 50 artists in a variety of media.

Several artists, musicians and organizers visited the WYSO studios for a week of previews on Excursions:

courtesy of Dayton Performing Arts Alliance

As the Dayton Performing Arts Alliance's Music Alive Composer-In-Residence, Stella Sung has been developing The Book Collector, a new one-act opera that combines the talents of Dayton Opera, Dayton Ballet and Dayton Philharmonic.  Sung returned to the WYSO studios, joined by director Gary Briggle, for a conversation with Niki Dakota about this world premiere event. 

The Book Collector with Carmina Burana will be presented on May 20th at 8pm and May 22nd at 3pm at the Schuster Center.  More information at daytonperformingarts.org

photo by Andy Snow

Behind the Groove host Radio Basim and Funk Center exhibit coordinator Hadley Drodge join WYSO Music Director Niki Dakota in the studio to talk about Dayton's funk legacy and the new exhibit on-site at the Dayton Metro Library's newly opened Northwest Branch.

Keigo Hirakawa, Eddie Brookshire and Fenton Sparks returned to the WYSO studios for a live set on Excursions ahead of their International Jazz Day performance at Gilly's.  They talked with WYSO Music Director Niki Dakota about the legacy of jazz in the Dayton area, their upcoming album and more.

Keigo Hirakawa Trio will perform at Gilly's in downtown Dayton on Saturday, April 30th at 8pm. 

Musician and dancer Evie Ladin is getting ready to release a new album in May with her trio.  Ladin, who used to dance with Dayton's Rhythm in Shoes, chatted with WYSO Music Director Niki Dakota ahead of the band's performance in St. Paris.

Evie Ladin will perform in St. Paris, Ohio as part of the Possum Hollow Log Cabin Series on April 23rd.

courtesy of Dayton Performing Arts Alliance

This weekend, Kenny G, the best selling instrumental artist in history, will share the stage with the Dayton Philharmonic.  WYSO Music Director Niki Dakota spoke with the legendary saxophone player by phone ahead of his visit to the Miami Valley.

The Dayton Philharmonic presents an evening with Kenny G Friday, April 8th and Saturday, April 9th at the Schuster Center.  More details at: http://daytonperformingarts.org/

Students perform at the 2014 Wright State University ArtsGala
courtesy of Wright State University

After last year's record-setting event, Wright State University's College of Liberal Arts is preparing for the 17th  annual ArtsGala.  Assistant Dean of the College of Liberal Arts Jennie Buckwalter and several Wright State arts students joined WYSO's Niki Dakota in the studio for a preview of the event that benefits students.

Wright State University's ArtsGala is Saturday, April 9th 6:30pm - midnight.  More information is at: wright/edu/artsgala

Joseph A. Rosen

Guy Davis returned to the WYSO studios after many years for a live performance on Excursions ahead of his appearance at Bellefontaine's historic Holland Theatre.  Davis spoke with WYSO Music Director Niki Dakota about his long-running career in the blues, his musical ties to Yellow Springs and more.

Guy Davis will perform at the Holland Theatre in Bellefontaine on Saturday, April 2nd at 7:30pm.  More information at: www.thehollandtheatre.org/

Wright State University's Opera Department will present two one-act operas this weekend at the Creative Arts Center.  Dr. Kimberly Warrick and WSU opera student Lisa Burwinkle join WYSO Music Director Niki Dakota in the studio to talk about art of opera and the upcoming performance.

Wright State University Opera Department's concert is April 1-3 at Wright State's Creative Arts Center.

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