Longtime Vancouver resident uses his radio show to help promote local bands

By Mary Ann Albright, Columbian Staff Reporter

Published:

 
photoJeff Allen

Less than a year ago, Vancouver resident Jeff Allen knew nothing about running a radio show. Now he’s the host and producer of “Viva La Luna” on Portland rock station 101.1 FM KUFO. The show is on Sundays from 9 to 10 p.m.

Allen, 36, took over the show in January. It focuses on Northwest rock bands, both well-known ones, such as Everclear, Soundgarden and Nirvana, and groups still trying to break out.

Allen, a 1992 Fort Vancouver High School graduate, owns Black Diamond Recording Studios in Portland and plays guitar in the local band Kandles at Nine.

Since taking over “Viva La Luna,” he has enjoyed the opportunity to spotlight emerging bands from the greater Portland area, including Vancouver group Restruct.

In addition to playing music from local groups, Allen tries to have live musical guests on his show each week.

“I have a lot of fun because … I get to help promote these bands and help them get more fans,” Allen said.

Sometimes he finds the bands at concerts and sometimes groups submit their material to him for consideration. That happens both through e-mail and postal mail and sometimes spontaneously at local music events Allen hosts.

“I’ve got people coming up to me at concerts saying, ‘Hey, here’s my CD. Can you play it?’” Allen said.