RADIO: City College show She’s Back-2-Back challenges gender-biased radio norms

RADIO: City College show ‘She’s Back-2-Back’ challenges gender-biased radio norms

Debut episode, produced and hosted by Alisha Solan, honors women winners of San Diego Music Awards

“She’s Back-2-Back” is a genre-jumping show featuring fabulous female artists produced by Alisha Solan of City Times Sound.

This episode is dedicated to award-winning women musicians from the annual San Diego Music Awards.

The 33rd annual San Diego Music Awards are coming on Tues., April 30 at Humphreys by the Bay. Tickets start at $40 and can be purchased online.

Voting for the 2024 SDMA runs through March 26 at 5 p.m. Click here to pick your favorite local artists.

Can’t access the recording? Click here. Keep reading for the transcript or click here.


Welcome to “She’s Back-2-Back, a genre-jumping show featuring fabulous female artists.

Now I have to confess that when I first pitched this show, I thought I was taking the easy road. Pick a few great local women and let ‘er rip… Instead I found myself pulled down a rabbit hole. Who knew just how radical a concept it still is to feature women on the radio in the 21st century? We can talk more about that later.

For now, let’s start the music. I’m dedicating today’s show to local San Diego Music Award winners past and present. Such as 2023 Best Pop Song winner Audrey Callahan. She’s going to start us off today with some “Good, Good Energy.”

(Good Good, Energy by Audrey Callahan)

Let’s keep the “Good Day” going with Manzanita Blues vocalist Lisa Domkat.

And you tell me, is this song is being ironic or just making a statement about finding happiness in the simple things? 

(“Good Day” by Manzanita Blues)

Make it a good day by getting tickets for the annual San Diego Music Awards show. It happens every spring. Go to their website, for more information.

(“Hell In Michelle” by Lady Psychiatrist’s Booth)

So if I ever need my head examined, I think Lady Psychiatrist’s Booth is the place to go for an answer. They are a local all-female band nominated for a San Diego Music Award in 2023. I do sometimes suspect that certain radio executives need to have their heads examined. I didn’t think it was all that radical to have a woman-centered show on the radio.

But when I pitched the idea to my professor, she told me a different story. During her 18 years as a radio DJ, they were instructed to NEVER play two women’s songs back-to-back. 

(“Give Me All Your Love” by Mercedes Rides Out)

That was Mercedes Rides Out, ne of the four feisty women who were nominated as Best New Artist in the 32nd annual San Diego Music Awards. Next up: Ash Easton who was also nominated. Can you guess who was the final winner?

(“Rough and Tough” by Ash Easton)

Tough choice, huh? So who won for the 32nd San Best Diego Music Awards? Ash Easton. So why would a radio station have a policy against listening to both of these women back-to-back?

This policy was made public in 2015, when radio consultant Keith Hill not only said we shouldn’t play two women back-to-back, but that, quote, “If you want to make ratings in country radio, take females out.”

Now, I’m hoping you’ll prove Hill wrong by sticking around for two back-to-back female winners for country music at the San Diego Music Awards: Kimmie Bitter and Sara Petite. 

(“My Grass is Blue” by Kimmie Bitter)

(“Road Less Traveled” by Sara Petite)

Soon it’s time for me to head off down that road less traveled as well. But before I wrap up our show on San Diego Music Awards winners, I have to give time to Rebecca Jade.

Jade won SDMA awards three years in a row, and in different categories. This is her 2021 Song of the Year, which unfortunately has to be edited a smidge to play on the radio.

(“Bad Wolves” by Rebecca Jade)

I hope you’ve enjoyed hearing these stellar local musicians as much as I’ve enjoyed sharing them with you.

Donate to City Times

Your donation will support the student journalists of San Diego City College. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment, cover the cost of training and travel to conferences, and fund student scholarships. Credit card donations are not tax deductible. Instead, those donations must be made by check. Please contact adviser Nicole Vargas for more information at [email protected].

More to Discover
Donate to City Times