With characters from across the pond, “High Tea” is one of the newer radio shows on WFNP The Edge and is the only one currently hosted by international students.
The program is hosted by Joe Gardner, a second-year journalism and creative writing major from London and Connor McElwaine, a second-year political science and history major from Glasgow, Scotland.
Amplifying the experience, Gardner speaks with an accent that sounds like that of British royalty and McElwaine looks like Adam Savage from Discovery Channel’s “Mythbusters.” McElwaine said he is often confused for being Irish, and made a point of noting that he is Scottish and not Irish (as many people assume).
This is the second and last semester at New Paltz for both and the first time either co-host have hosted a radio show.
Gardner has had some experience working for the BBC reading cricket results and McElwaine has been interviewed on the radio. The idea for the show started while McElwaine was on Facebook.
“We were on Facebook one day and I was just sitting listening to Frightened Rabbit and I thought it would be cool to do a radio show,” said McElwaine.
McElwaine and Gardner decided to host a show that would play only British music, which they found difficult due to the station’s music collection consisting of predominantly American music. In spite of this challenge, they said they will try to play only British music with a strong focus on Indie.
The two hope to provide an international perspective and diversify the campus media.
“It’s quite easy to walk around campus and not realize that there are international students here,” said Gardner.
Gardner and McElwaine agree that New Paltz isn’t a typical American town and a beautiful one. McElwaine said New Paltz is “completely different to Scotland.”
The hosts also discuss tea on the show, which is on Thursdays from 3 to 4 p.m. During one recording, they explain how to properly make tea in Hasbrouck: First, add hot water to a cup, then a tea bag. Remove the tea bag, then add milk if necessary. “Real” tea, however, seems to be more of a science than that.
“It’s not right…I don’t know what I would call it,” said McElwaine. “It’s more like a flavored drink. It’s not tea.”
The show is named “High Tea” because it is on the air around the time that the British have what is called “high tea,” when they drink proper European tea and eat sandwiches.
“We like music like our tea,” said Gardner. “We like it strong.”