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‘In the Spirit’ to debut on i105

WFIV i105.3 is debuting a new radio show on Sunday mornings, “In the Spirit with Jeff and Sarah,” that program director Joe Stutler said will fill a market void in the Knoxville area.

“I can honestly say I do not believe anyone will come close to the sheer variety of sounds you will hear on our Sunday morning,” Stutler said.

“In the Spirit” will blend the station’s Americana base with gospel, roots, rock, country and bluegrass music, and will be hosted by Jeff Barbra and Sarah Pirkle, musicians in their own rights.

Barbra and Pirkle were first-place winners of the 2000 Merlefest Chris Austin Songwriting Contest and were hosts of the WDVX “Behind the Barn Series” from 1999 to 2004. The couple, married for 14 years, will record the show at their studio in their Walland home.

“Jeff and Sarah are ingrained in the music scene here in East Tennessee and have been for years and really have a passion for the music. We’re really excited about this addition for the station,” Stutler said.

The show debuts Aug. 14 and will be played every Sunday from 8 to 11 a.m.

“It’ll be a big mix of bluegrass slash gospel slash we’re making up our own category of music where everything is uplifting and positive. We’re hoping to have the perfect way to start your Sunday morning, whether you’re going off to church or just preparing to start your day, it’ll be something nice,” Stutler said.

“I’ve always thought this would be a neat thing to do for our area,” he added.

Barbra said the content would be from his and Pirkle’s own record collection.

“It’s basically a sample of what you get on Sunday if you come to Jeff and Sarah’s house,” he said.

Pirkle added, “It’s what we would be playing while I’m cooking brunch.”

Stutler said he was excited about the show because of the way it would play with the rest of the station’s content.

“It’ll be a night and day departure from the rest of the station, but when you get into our Americana portion, it’ll definitely be a nice marriage between the two, because the music will fall so closely together.

“I think this is the right thing for Sunday mornings in our format,” he added.

Barbra agreed: “i105 is independent radio, and this is just one more way for them to claim their independence from any kind of commercial format.”

WFIV is owned by Farragut resident Doug Horne, who also owns farragutpress.


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