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WRFL Wrapped 2021

A lot has happened in 2021, and with the end of the year comes a chance to think over everything, see where we’ve been and where we’re going. It’s been almost two years since the beginning of the pandemic, and this year we saw an influx of new trainees and DJs both from our student body and community, cycles of new music and album releases, amazing WRFL Live performances in the studio, and reintroduction of live, in-station DJ-ing.

But of course, our programming has continued more-or-less uninterrupted as it has since 1988. Thanks to our website developer Tyler Marie, we have a list of our top artists, albums, and tracks played on WRFL this year. Let’s take a brief look at the data of some of the most played music at the station in 2021.

Our most played artist this year was Japanese Breakfast, who was played for a total of 203 times. Japanese Breakfast of course released her 3rd full album Jubilee in June and which stayed in our playbox well into the fall, mostly due to the album’s popularity among our DJs.

Among our top 20 artists, two were local: S.G. Goodman and frigidkitty.

The rest of our top artists were as listed:

1. Japanese Breakfast (203 plays)

2. Mitski (131 plays)

3. King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard (108 plays)

4. St. Vincent (85 plays)

5. TORRES (84 plays)

6. Lucy Dacus (83 plays)

7. The Mountain Goats (82 plays)

8. Bachelor (81 plays)

9. ISLAND (80 plays)

10. Chastity Belt (74 plays)

11. S.G. Goodman (72 plays)

12. Squirrel Flower (70 plays)

13. illuminati hotties (68 plays)

14. Lou Barlow (67 plays)

15. Caroline Polachek (64 plays)

16. SOPHIE (63 plays)

17. frigidkitty (62 plays)

18. Angel Olsen (59 plays)

19. Xiu Xiu (57 plays)

20. Phoebe Bridgers (55 plays)

Our top album of the year similarly was Japanese Breakfast’s album Jubilee which was played 148 times. The second top album of the year was Thirstier by TORRES. This album came out in July, but didn’t make its way into our playbox until early August.

Like our top 20 artists, the albums by local artists on this list are S.G. Goodman’s Old Time Feeling and frigidkitty’s Indulgence.

The rest of our top albums were as listed:

1. Japanese Breakfast – Jubilee (148 plays)

2. TORRES – Thirstier (81 plays)

3. Bachelor – Doomin’ Sun (79 plays)

4. ISLAND – Yesterday Park (76 plays)

5. S.G. Goodman – Old Time Feeling (73 plays)

6. Lou Barlow – Reason To Live (63 plays)

7. St. Vincent – Daddy’s Home (59 plays)

8. frigidkitty – Indulgence (58 plays)

9. Ghoul Talk – Magician (55 plays)

10. Lucy Dacus – Home Video (53 plays)

11. Caroline Polachek – Pang (52 plays)

12. Alice Phoebe Lou – Glow (51 plays)

13. Softwing – Key (50 plays)

14. Poise – Vestiges (48 plays)

15. Wavves – Hideaway (47 plays)

16. The Mountain Goats – Dark In Here (46 plays)

17. Goat Girl – On All Fours (45 plays)

18. Silverware – No Plans (45 plays)

19. Pom Pom Squad – Death Of A Cheerleader (44 plays)

20. Spellling – The Turning Wheel (43 plays)

20. Sufjan Stevens – A Beginner’s Mind (43 plays)

Our top track of the year was Softwing’s “Key,” which was put in our playbox in July and actually had its radio debut on WRFL. Though this song was not in our local playbox, Katherine Hoskins, the person behind Softwing, is from Lexington and grew up listening to WRFL, even if she now is based in Brooklyn. So, one could consider it local music adjacent if nothing else.

Otherwise, there was a much larger showing of tracks from local artists in this category this year, which includes Cindy’s “Get Free,” Sunmates “I’m Not Strong,” Venice Under Water’s “Orion’s Belt,” S.G. Goodman’s “Old Time Feeling,” Briefly Pink’s “Coconut Jam,” naptaker.’s “Strange Things Are Afoot At The Circle K,” and frigidkitty’s “Hooks”.

The rest of our top tracks were as listed:

1. Softwing – “Key”  (50 plays)

2. Japanese Breakfast – “Paprika” (42 plays)

3. Lou Barlow – “Reason To Live” (38 plays)

4. Cindy – “Get Free” (36 plays)

5. Japanese Breakfast – “Be Sweet” (32 plays)

6. Sunmates – “I’m Not Strong” (31 plays)

7. Bachelor – “Back Of My Hand” (29 plays)

8. Japanese Breakfast – “Slide Tackle” (28 plays)

9. Venice Under Water – “Orion’s Belt” (26 plays)

10. S.G. Goodman – “Old Time Feeling” (25 plays)

11. Elluna – “Trapped” (24 plays)

12. St. Vincent – “Live In The Dream” (23 plays)

13. Lucy Dacus – “Hot & Heavy” (23 plays)

14. Mitski – “Working For The Knife” (22 plays)

15. Ghoul Talk – “Migraine/Headache” (22 plays)

16. Briefly Pink – “Coconut Jam” (22 plays)

17. Indigo De Souza – “hold u” (21 plays)

17. Squirrel Flower – “Starshine” (21 plays)

17. naptaker. – “Strange Things Are Afoot At The Circle K” (21 plays)

20. frigidkitty – “Hooks” (20 plays)

Thanks to all of our DJs new and old for hosting all of our shows and programming this year, and thanks to all of our listeners for tuning in!

Here’s to a new year where we will still keep playing music, tuning in, and DJ-ing for Lexington and the surrounding area, because WRFL will always be your only alternative left. Have a Happy New Year from all of us at WRFL!