Every Monday night, DJ møod ring, aka Kae Chavez, hosts møod swings, a special hour filled with feelings, overshares, and a delightfully genre-chaotic playlist to remind you that you are a human being. Today, February 12, 2024, møod swings will broadcast its 100th episode, starting at 7pm! To celebrate this special milestone, learn a lil bit more about Kae and the show below:
Tell us a little bit about yourself! What’s your background? Where are you from?
I am from San Francisco. I was born in Kaiser on Geary. I grew up in the Bay Area, where I still live with family - oof, but it’s fine! I went to San Diego for college, and I lived there for a little bit. I get a lot of my personality from my time in San Diego. I talk slower, and I feel like I have a valley girl voice sometimes. I'm really drawn to the beach and the ocean. I love just, like, laying out in the sun and walking around listening to pop music, eating Mexican food or an açaí bowl, which people do a lot in Southern California. I came back to the Bay Area in 2019. Since then, I have been trying to figure out how to tap into my creative interests and doing things that bring me joy more.
What else about me…I am Pinay, which is really important to me because my parents lived in the Philippines, and when they came to America, they were very much like, “You're American, and that's it.” Like, assimilate. It wasn't until I got to college and started learning about my heritage, and then moving back to the Bay and trying to make sense of my identity, that I realized how interesting and important it is to the person I’m trying to be. So I like to represent as much as I can. I play Tagalog music on my show when I can.
I also have a cat named Ponyo, and she's the best. She monopolizes my camera roll and is literally the executive producer of my radio show. Obviously, I do the selecting myself, but sometimes I’ll ask her if she likes a song and she’ll give me a little “meow” to let me know what she thinks. I just love spending my mornings with her and holding her. I don't have kids, but I think it's okay because I have a cat, which is basically like having a sweet furry baby that will never really grow up.
Yeah, I don’t think cats have those drama-ridden teenage years, right? You talked about tapping into your creative interest and doing things that bring you joy. Did you find DJing as part of that exploration?
I always had a DJ fantasy. When I was in college, I got to DJ a frat party, and it was like…it was so stressful [laughs]. But I really liked making a playlist and basically being a vibe curator for this party. I think I just like being able to cultivate the mood through songs. That's why my show is called møod swings. Every show is based on a different feeling and a different color, like a mood ring.
How did you find BFF.fm and when did you start at the station?
I first discovered BFF.fm because I was working an event for my 9-5 at the Ferry Building, and BFF.fm had a DJ booth there. I saw the name, and I was like, “that’s cute” I Googled them and filled out the volunteer form, planning to just volunteer and get involved. Then when I had my interview with [founder] Amanda, I told her I had a DJ fantasy, like I’ve always wanted to do it. And she was like, “Oh you should just DJ!” And I was like, “Oh I didn’t even know that was an option!” [Laughs]
So I started in summer 2021 at BFF.fm's Ferry Building pop-up. I was kind of obsessed with that little studio. People ride the ferry, so there were always people there, and I had a 7-8pm slot, so I would get people as they're walking to the ferry to go home or, like, as they're getting dinner. You could, like, play your music for people. People would come up to the booth and ask me for directions or request a song and sometimes dance to what I was playing - which was always a really cool feeling.
What kind of listener do you think would really enjoy your show?
I feel like someone that isn't too set on, like, a specific genre. Like I said, I'm a pop girl, but because of my show and because of its themes, I always have to push myself to listen to new music…which I really like and am grateful for. There are just so many artists that I'm constantly learning about and enjoying. So someone who has an open mind, likes feeling their feelings, and isn't afraid of a chaotic playlist! Because, like, genre-wise, it truly jumps around. But also someone who likes listening to people ramble about their feelings because when I hop on the mic, I have to check myself, like…this actually isn't my diary. I overshare a lot on my show. [laughs] I’m processing my emotions on the mic.
Can you tell me a little bit more about your relationship to music and how it inspires you, or share some of the earliest musical memories you have?
I grew up listening to my music because of my dad. He really liked smooth jazz and was, like, obsessed with Sade, who is a big influence on me. My parents love to sing, and I think similar to a lot of Filipino families, music is like a really big thing in our family. We tend not to talk about our feelings, but we listen to a lot of music to help us process our emotions. So that is the root of why I listen to music so much. I like that music has the ability to help me feel in different ways. When I listen to a lot of pop music, I feel uplifted and happier, even if it's a sad song lyrically. If the beat is pumping, I'm just like, “Sad banger!” And skipping down the street to someone singing about their most recent breakup. And I love that! I like how people can tell their stories through music. I think that's really crucial. I feel really lucky when I get to listen to songs that feel so personal because [the artist] is being vulnerable and sharing something with the world that often many people feel but just don’t talk about. For me, I struggle with vulnerability sometimes...even though I am an oversharer! Especially during the pandemic and lockdown and feeling really isolated, if I listened to a song, I knew that there were other people listening to it. I feel like the music community–whatever that means to people–it can be really welcoming and can make you feel really seen.
Who are some of your current favorite artists, and who are some of your all-time faves?
Right now I’m really enjoying UNIIQU3 and Shy Girl - I think if I ever get there in my DJ journey, I would love to work with them because I’ve really been loving and enjoying everything that they’ve put out. I’m also really loving SASSY 009, Rochelle Jordan, and Alemeda right now. Favorites of all time…Beyoncé has been so consistent for me. I also love my girls Kehlani, Kacey Musgraves, Carly Rae Jepsen (people need to give her a chance, ok!), Mariah Carey, Whitney Houston, and Sade, of course. They’re timeless to me.
Do you have any fellow BFF.fm DJs or shows you adore that you want to shout out?
Yeah, I want to give some special love to my Monday radio neighbors! So the person who has the show before me, Stefani, PICKLEPLANET- PICKLEPLANET for life! I love Stef so much. She plays, like, the best music. I listen to her as I’m coming to the station and getting ready. Then similarly, Erica, who does The Monday Lineup after me, love her. She has also been really helpful because she's done this a lot longer, and when I was just starting, she was always so nice to me. She’s so good at calming my nerves and taught me how to transition between shows. But yeah, The Monday Lineup and PICKLEPLANET. It just makes Monday so fun. It’s like that's my favorite day of the week now since I get to see them!
Tune in to møod swings on Mondays from 7-8pm...especially today, February 12, for the show’s 100th episode! Find past episodes and more on møod swings’ show page. Maybe you’re about to start loving Mondays, too?
Long-time fan of community radio and music writer/appreciator, now a proud Bestie, BFF.fm Board Member, and Chair of the station's Content Marketing Sub-Committee ✨
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