Former KCPR DJ Neal Losey Celebrates 30 Years On-Air

In his time at Cal Poly, Neal Losey was not a journalism student. In fact, his interest in history is what initially brought him to San Luis Obispo more than three decades ago. However, an entirely different interest eventually brought him to the KCPR studio, where he fostered a passion for sharing music that reshaped his career aspirations entirely.

Neal Losey, former KCPR DJ
Neal Losey kicks back in his office at KCBX-FM.
Photo by Glen Starkey, New Times SLO.

By Olivia Nelson

“I was always the kid who loved sharing music with people. I took records to show and tell in second grade; I would bring a turntable and a James Brown 45,” Losey said. “When I got involved with KCPR, I realized I was doing the same thing: sharing music with people, which I really dig. That’s why I still love what I do now.”

That love for sharing music has compelled Losey to remain on-air for the past three decades, since his KCPR beginnings in 1989. Losey started volunteering at KCBX in 1993, spinning discs for a Saturday evening show called The Night Train, a show he still produces today. He joined the full-time staff of KCBX in 1997 as the music director and the host of The Morning Cup and has remained there since. Losey has also worked for multiple commercial radio stations over the past 25 years, including K-Otter, K-Bear and The Beach. Losey’s career flourished on the Central Coast airwaves, even through what he described as more difficult times for public radio.

Losey has maintained a close relationship with the student-run station since his time as a student. As a mentor, Losey guides the young creatives who now find themselves behind the microphone, where he himself once sat.

“When I got to KCPR, I was terribly shy,” Losey said, “but once I got involved with KCPR, I realized ‘Hey, I’m kind of good at this.’”

Each year, Losey extends his help to the KCPR crew. He offers his phone number to the team and continues to be a resource, remaining involved despite a demanding schedule. When asked what compels him to remain invested, his answer was simple: love for the students and for the station.

“Everybody has to find their thing and find a place where you belong” Losey said, “and for a lot of people, KCPR is that thing.”

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