Host – Francisco Narvaez AKA Cisco AKA Fongo
Hometown – Miami, FL (born in Ecaudor, grew up in London)
School Year/Major – Junior; Literature major; Music Business minor
Favorite Artists – Lil Wayne, MF Doom, Earl Sweatshirt, Gucci Mane, Zuse, Goldlink, Denmark Vessey
Host – Tristan Niskansen
Hometown – Aspen, Colorado
School Year/Major – Freshman; English major
Favorite Artists – Kendrick Lamar, Radiohead, Elliott Smith, Nas, Isaiah Rashad, Eminem
About the show:
Time: Tuesdays from 12 A.M. – 2 A.M. EST
Hip-Hop Road Trip is a hip-hop-centric specialty show that focuses on a different major U.S. city and its music scene every week. The show also features guest appearances and freestyles from local rappers, such as Untamed, who joined Cisco and Tristan for their first episode. So far the duo have done episodes centered on Miami and Atlanta, with future plans to cover every city from Houston to New York City to Los Angeles.
The idea for the show was birthed from Cisco’s love for hip-hop documentaries. He loved the in-depth commentary the documentaries gave on the music, but was bothered by the fact that they would only play snippets of the songs they were discussing. He soon realized that a radio show would be the perfect format to combine these two elements. He describes the show as a “NPR/Sway In The Morning-hybrid”. The idea for the show was also influenced heavily by “The Stretch and Bobbito Show” which ran on WKCR , Columbia University’s radio station, throughout the 90’s, and introduced the world to acts like The Notorious B.I.G., Nas, Eminem and the Wu-Tang Clan. Inspired by their story, Cisco brainstormed and came up with the idea of Hip-Hop Road Trip. After being impressed by his vast knowledge of hip-hop during one of his on-air sets, Cisco asked Tristan to join him for the show, and together the two planned the cities and artists they would cover each episode, and the rest was history.
Each show follows a roughly chronological sequence – the two DJ’s begin their sets with earlier artists that helped form the music scene for each respective city, and work their way up to the city’s next big up-and-comers. In between songs, the two discuss the music that was just played, giving interesting facts and history on each city’s music scene. The two try to focus on giving lesser known artists a platform, while still giving each city an accurate representation. “We’re tying to provide an alternative from what most people are hearing from the city, but at the same time targeting all of the important players from their respective cities”, explains Tristan. “A large aspect of it is supporting local artists, and giving them the shine. There’s people that normally wouldn’t be played on the radio, no matter how good the music is, and those artists need an outlet,” says Cisco. They still cover heavy hitters from each city they explore, but they take a unique approach: “For the more well known artists, we try to showcase some of their lesser known songs, like something off their mixtapes, or older freestyles and obscure collaborations,” Tristan explains.
Both hosts have a deep passion and respect for the genre, and have been huge fans since their younger years. Their passion radiates through on the show, between the breadth of the music they select and the intensely knowledgable commentary they give throughout. “Hip-hop is something I hold so close to my heart, because when I moved here, I didn’t really know anything about American culture, and I like to say that I was educated by rap music,” says Cisco.
The two have some very exciting guests and surprises in store for the next couple weeks. If you enjoy hip-hop and/or want to hear Tristan and Cisco drop some heavy knowledge, check out “Hip-Hop Road Trip” on WVUM every Tuesday night from 12 A.M.- 2 A.M.