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

Brenna Myers and Alexander Scaglia have known each and have been playing music together since childhood.  Now performing under the name The Florals, the Springfield duo is releasing its debut album on Poptek Records.  Myers and Scaglia visited the WYSO studios on release day for a live set on Excursions and talked with Niki Dakota about the new release and an upcoming tour.

Change Your Hue Blues Concert is an evening of food, music and fundraising in support of the United Methodist Children's Home.  Hall of Fame Blues host Shakin Dave Hussong joined Niki Dakota in the studio and WYSO Resource Board member and event co-organizer Don Hiyashi via phone to talk about the music and the event

Change Your Hue Blues Concert is May 2nd in Columbus.

Nashville-based songwriter Olivia Frances has roots in Cincinnati and brought her upbeat tunes to the WYSO studios for a live set on Excursions.  She and Niki Dakota chatted about her tour, the joys and challenges of social media and more.

Olivia Frances will perform at the Spirited Goat Coffeehouse in Yellow Springs on Friday, April 24th.

This weekend, the Dayton Contemporary Dance Company will present a world premiere performance of An Evening of Ellington, which will feature the music of Duke Ellington performed by the University of Dayton's jazz ensemble.  Choreographer Alvin Rangel and DCDC's Jay Peterson joined Niki Dakota in the WYSO studios for conversation about the show.

An Evening of Ellington is Saturday, April 18th at the Dayton Masonic Center

The title of Keigo Hirakawa's new album, And Then There Were Three refers to a composition Hirakawa wrote about his sons.  Hirakawa and his trio visited the WYSO studios ahead of the CD release party for a live set on Excursions.

Keigo Hirakawa Trio will celebrate the release of And Then There Were Three on Sunday, April 12th at Gilly's in downtown Dayton.

Sedona-based band, Decker made its way to Ohio in the midst of a 40 show tour for an acoustic set on Excursions ahead of a gig in Cincinnati.  The  band chatted with Niki Dakota about their newly self-released album, the tour, and more.

Decker will perform on Wednesday, April 8th at Cincinnati's MOTR Pub. 

The three organizations that make up the Dayton Performing Arts Alliance are collaborating on a presentation of Bizet's The Pearl Fishers.  Singers from Dayton Opera will be accompanied by music from the Dayton Philharmonic and dance from the Dayton Ballet.  Members of the cast and crew visited the WYSO studios to talk about the upcoming performance and share some musical previews on Excursions.

Dayton Performing Arts Alliance's presentation of The Pearl Fishers is onstage at the Schuster Center April 17th and 19th.

Nasty Bingo return to the WYSO studios for a live set on Excursions ahead of their Yellow Springs performance.  The band talked with Music Director Niki Dakota about the origin of their name, their recording project and more.

Nasty Bingo will performance at the Emporium in Yellow Springs on Friday, March 27th.

Wright State University

As Wright State University's Creative Arts Center undergoes a renovation, the College of Liberal Arts will celebrate its 16th annual Arts Gala.  The event showcases the work of students majoring in the fine and performing arts, and several of those students along with Jennie Buckwalter, assistant dean of the College of Liberal Arts, visited the WYSO studios to chat with music director Niki Dakota.

Wright State University's Arts Gala is Saturday, March 28th.

courtesy of Dayton Performing Arts Alliance

The timeless story of Peter Pan will be coming to the Schuster Center in a combined presentation by Dayton Ballet and Dayton Philharmonic.  Conductor Neil Gittleman and artistic director Karen Russo Burke joined WYSO Music Director Niki Dakota in the studio to talk about the staging of Peter Pan and shared some of the musical score.

Peter Pan is March 20th, 21st and 22nd at the Schuster Center in downtown Dayton. 

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