Josefino Alvarado, a California farm worker, describes his typical morning picking blueberries at a Ventura County farm.
As the sun beats down on him and his fellow workers, a crackle of static hums at their feet. “Hola mi gente,” (Hello, my people) a voice calls out from the radio’s speakers in Spanish. Then, “tanìndíí,” which means ‘good morning’ in Mixteco.
On this farm and most of the farms nearby, workers have their radios tuned into the same station: 94.1, Radio Indígena.
Radio Indígena (indígena means indigenous in Spanish) is one of the first indigenous Mexican radio stations in the United States. The community-run station boasts 40 hours of original programming every week, broadcasting music and talk shows in a handful of indigenous languages, as well as Spanish programming too.
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