djdarlabeathumb_r140x140In the newest edition of The KCSBeat, Colin Marshall’s Santa Barbara Independent column on the whos, whats and whys of KCSB, the highly-connected, SB-to-the-core DJ Darla Bea Smith and her show Rock It Properly get the profile treatment:

Smith’s penchant for rock knowledge pays off in her ability to craft every installment of Rock it Properly around a theme. Past shows have included “Wham, Bam, Thank You Glam” (a tribute to glam rock), “We Gotcha Covered” (nothing but covers) and “I See London, I See France” (I’m not sure, but it certainly sounds intriguing). Even when she had to drag herself into the studio and somehow remain awake for the 3-6 a.m. graveyard shift on her debut last summer, she still managed to adhere to Rock It Properly’s organizing principles.

Nevertheless, I couldn’t help but ask Smith, a KCSB listener since 1994, why it took her so many years to join the station. “I’m a Virgo,” she explained, “a perfectionist.” It seems the very perfectionism that drives her to produce such a prepared, information-rich program also prevented her from doing so for quite some time. “When I was at UCSB, I was just focused on graduating,” she said, “and when I do something, I want to really do it.” And do it she certainly has, with all of the concentration the big-time FM DJs of old used to put into their broadcasts. As guest Spencer Barnitz of Santa Barbara “Latin big-band spy movie” band Spencer the Gardener remarked, “Darla, your show is how radio can’t be anymore.”

Get the full story on Smith, her program and SB’s surprising musical output here.