By Silvia Foster-Frau fosterfr@grinnell.edu

On a late Monday night when you’re still writing that paper, stream KDIC for a break instead of going to the Grille to get a coffee. The radio show Rhyme Time With the Hip-Hop Docs, hosted by Aaron Lapkin ’15 and Tim McCall ’15, is a 12 a.m. substitute for an espresso shot.

The show ends at 1 a.m., leaving its audience awake, alive and ready to finish up their homework. Rhyme Time fluctuates between chill ’90s hip-hop and the commentary of the two self-proclaimed “skinny white guys.” This contrast energizes its audience and, perhaps, leaves them wishing they had DJ names too.

Lapkin and McCall are fun and passionate hosts and this comes through in their show. Their exuberant nature provides for some interesting on-air conversations. In one show, for example, Lapkin took on the alter ego of “DJ Frodo”.

Photo by Devon Gamble

“We must destroy it, Sam,” Lapkin said in a convincing British accent.

Their passion for their music quickly becomes apparent. The Wu-Tang Clan”is a particular favorite; Lapkin says they are Wu-Tang Clan’s biggest fans on campus, while McCall confirms that the Wu-Tang Clan are “lyrical masters, man.” The show’s hosts feel morally obligated to expose the Grinnell community to this band and many others like it.

However, McCall and Lapkin don’t just play ’90s rap. The two hosts themselves might rap on-air and are even open to engaging in rap battles with listeners. Lapkin encouraged McCall to rap, who started strong but quickly diminished.

“We’re in the Grille right now and it smells like chicken parm. Usually I like the smell of gunpowder and crack cocaine, when I get rappin’, you know … to get in the mood,” McCall rapped.

They both see themselves doing radio as at least a hobby in the future.

“People say that radio isn’t as significant these days because you know, we’ve got the Internet, but there’s still a lot of room. There [are] so many opportunities. … Anyone can just make their own radio show and broadcast it to thousands of people across the globe if they want to…” McCall said.

On a personal level, McCall added “It’s fun to put on this radio persona where you’re way cooler than you actually are.”

Despite McCall and Lapkin’s high spirits, KDIC radio tends to lack listeners.

Lapkin jokingly recalled their first show: “We were rapping it out, we were getting ahead of ourselves, thinking ‘oh, we’ll get it out to all these listeners’ and so I’m like ‘Tim, what are we at?’ and he’s like… ‘Seven.’”

Both hosts are determinedly brainstorming new ideas, such as trivia games and student interviews, in order to boost listenership. Meanwhile, they try to look on the bright side.

“I mean, our record is 14 viewers, so we’re getting big” Lapkin said.

“And you know, that’s like 14 individual computers streaming it, so there could be upwards of at least 50 people listening to it,” McCall pointed out.

Lapkin and McCall don’t let the small number of viewers get them down. On- and off-air, their conversations are humorous. Their DJ names are one example of a comical, reoccurring theme in their show. DJ Frodo aside, these two show hosts call themselves Doctor Thug Nasty (McCall) and Doctor Rusty Knife Screwdriver (Lapkin).

“There’s a lot of DJ names being tossed around. That’s half our show, just talking about DJ names,” McCall said.

“…And also [talking about] how little viewers we have… hint hint wink wink… start listening!” Lapkin said.

Get an un-caffeinated boost from two radio Doctors by tuning into Rhyme Time With The Hip-Hop Docs, which airs Monday nights from 12 am to 1 pm.