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

Team Void returned to the WYSO studios on July 4th for a special performance live on Excursions.  The band is preparing for a special show at Oddbody's benefiting the Aria Marie Foundation and talked with Niki Dakota about the upcoming show and more.

Myrtle Beach based band Treehouse visited the WYSO studios ahead of their appearance at the Fourth Annual Festival of Fire in Bellefontaine.  The band performed live on Excursions and chatted with Niki Dakota, who was also joined by festival organizers.

The Fourth Annual Festival of Fire is July 1st and 2nd in Bellefontaine, Ohio.

Yellow Springs Kids Playhouse

This week on Excursions, a live performance from the young, talented stars of the new Yellow Springs Kids’ Playhouse production Alice, Although. Niki Dakota also sits down with the production’s director, AnnMarie Saunders, and Ara Beal, artistic director of YSKP.

Jerry Kenney

This week on Excurions with Niki Dakota, Krista Magaw and Anna Carlson with the Tecumseh Land Trust stopped into the studio to talk about a Shop Local/Eat Local Workshop they're holding on Saturday, June 18, 2016.  Check out the interview and details below.

Details provided by Tecumseh Land Trust. (WYSO is not responsible for this content)

The Shop Local/Eat Local Workshop will be held from 10:00am to noon at their office located at 4633 US RT 68, Yellow Springs.

Jerry Kenney

Daniel Zehringer is an Associate Professor at Wright State University where he serves as head of the Trumpet studio and coordinator of the Faculty Brass Quintet. He also conducts the Wright State University Trumpet Ensemble.

Jerry Kenney / WYSO

Kettering resident Keith Lykins returned to the WYSO studios to share a variety of music and instruments live on Excursions with Niki Dakota.

Keith Lykins will perform on June 10th at Caesar Creek Winery, on June 11th at the Yellow Springs Street Fair, and on July 15th at Courthouse Square in downtown Dayton.

Marty Romie Previews Big Brews and Blues

May 20, 2016

  Niki Dakota sat down with Marty Romie, the director of Dayton’s Big Brews and Blues Gala, which took place at RiverScape Metro Park in Dayton on May 21, 2016.

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