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Best “Keeping it Real” Apostle
President Henry B. Eyring
The highest-ranking apostles in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints tend to shy away from the informal, whether in person or during General Conference talks. But listen to Henry Eyring talk about his early youth in New Jersey—in his New Joosey accent—and you’re in for a charming tale of hoops and friends from across the racial divide. With his beaming smile and erudite conversation, stereotypes and preconceptions fall away to reveal a man who might be the LDS Church’s greatest asset when it comes to charm.
Best Face of Change
The Utes have some of the most impressive stats in NCAA basketball—historic stats, that is. Though the team has made the NCAA Tournament 27 times, there hasn’t been much to cheer about in recent years, thanks to losing seasons and a near exodus of players—after Larry Krystkowiak was announced as head coach in 2011, eight players left the squad and the team went 6-25. But Krystkowiak’s nearly brand-new team made huge strides in 2012-13, ending the season on a sweet note by beating No. 19 Oregon and scoring upset victories over USC and Cal to take them to the Pac-12 semifinals. The Runnin’ Utes are actually running again, and we know we have Krystkowiak, the intense, 6-foot-9-inch figure stalking the sidelines, to thank for the program’s promising future.
Aside from constantly winning this award to the point where we could name it after them, X96 has had plenty to cheer about over the past year: a huge crowd for the Big Ass Show, the return of Todd Nuke ’Em, continued ratings dominance, the launch of Squatters’ Red as Hell Ale and, of course, turning the ripe old age of 21. And we’re sure spinning Mumford & Sons until the MP3 wore out played a part in there somewhere. It’s clear that X96 has a firm hold on the market and the listeners—have a drink to celebrate now that you’re legal, guys.
96.3 FM, X96.com
2. 97.1 ZHT
3. 101.9 The End
Radio From Hell, X96
It was almost a foregone conclusion that Radio From Hell was going to win this award again. The show’s combination of news, guests, popular recurring segments and sensationalized bickering always bring in the listeners, but this year, the show amped up the drama—first by nearly suffocating Kerry Jackson in a breathing machine, then by sending Bill Allred to climb the base camp of Mount Everest only to come back with a buzzed haircut, and topping the year off with Gina Barberi getting a concussion while skating. Look for the 2013 addition to the show for even more drama: Omar, the sassy black intern from Panguitch.
6-10 a.m. weekdays, 96.3 FM, X96.com/RFH
2. RadioWest, KUER 90.1
3. The Morning Zoo, ZHT 97.1
Best ’80s Radio
Who says you need a broadcast tower to reach the masses? KCQN has been doing a great job for nearly two years, raking in the online listenership with classic new-wave tracks, a genre once thought to be disposable. With a familiar cast of Utah’s radio past, including founder Chet Tapp, Mister West and Cuzzin Brad, the station serves as both a reminder of better days for older listeners and an education in music and broadcast history for the younger crowd.
City Weekly readers feel that KRCL is the best and only alternative to the commercial clones glutting the local dial. It’s sometimes easy to forget that KRCL has some of the best, most original and unpredictable programming in the country, especially at night, with longtime shows like Circus Brown’s Not a Sideshow, the all-metal Maximum Distortion, Dr. Johnny Fever’s Dirty Boulevard, SLC hip-hop institution Friday Night Fallout and many more—and that’s not even including the weekends. If you love music, KRCL really is the only local station you need.
90.9 FM, KRCL.org
2. KUER 90.1
3. KCPW 88.3
Best Way to “Blair” the Radio
Courtney Blair, KRCL 90.9
Among the many bright spots on KRCL’s schedule, even after 2012’s reformatting, is Courtney Blair and her show, Afternoon Delight (Saturdays, 1-4 p.m.). Blair plays the latest indie and underground music that Pitchfork hasn’t yet been able to discredit, giving her show a unique blend of unknown gems and risky music that KRCL and Salt Lakers should be thankful to have.