Jordan Garber and Hanna Richards hosting "Watch Yo' Nuts" in the Black Squirrel Radio Studio. Photo by Rachel Campbell.
Jordan Garber sits with one hand on a PC and the other on a Mac. Her headphones blend into her jet-black hair and glide over her bangs like a headband. Her abstract legging-adorned legs are crossed under the table as she speaks with bright red lips into a microphone. Hanna Richards sits to her left with her blonde and pink hair pulled into a bun. She fiddles with a tube of lipstick as she talks to Jordan through an identical microphone of her own. Both 19-year-old Kent State sophomores are wearing boots, the clothing item that sparked their friendship in the first place. They may be speaking to each other, but they’re also chatting with whomever tuned into Black Squirrel Radio for the latest segment of Watch Yo Nutz.
Music and fashion tend to go hand-in-hand these days, and Jordan and Hanna have jumped on this trend with their weekly radio show called Watch Yo Nutz. Here they discuss the latest in alternative and rock as well as the best and worst outfits on and off campus.
Jordan and Hanna are both Columbus natives who held part-time jobs at Sweet & Sassy Salon, a business that specializes in styling children. It was here that their friendship began over none other than music and fashion.
“It was kind of just a stupid job, but we bonded mostly over music,” Hanna says. “And we would both wear boots to work,” Jordan interrupted. “And other cool stuff,” Hanna finished.
During their time at Sweet & Sassy, they discovered they would both be attending Kent State in Fall 2011, which further fueled their friendship. Hanna had been looking forward to being involved with the campus’ radio station, Black Squirrel Radio, while Jordan had her own reasons.
“I’m an electronic media production major, and I wasn’t exactly sure what I wanted to get into in the media,” Hanna says. “The radio station from my local hometown has been like really, really cool. I’ve listened to them my whole life, and some of the stuff they do really interested me. I’ve gotten opportunities to sit in on their studios and do behind-the-scenes stuff through internships, and I realized I really wanted to do radio.”
Hanna says Kent had a better radio station than other colleges she looked at, so she thought it would be a great experience for her. She got involved with the marketing side of the station her first semester by volunteering to help pass out fliers and plan events. When Spring 2012 rolled around she was ready to get in the studio. Hanna called upon Jordan to act as her co-host, who was all for it.
“I like to listen to music, so it would be more fun to have the excuse to jam out to whatever I want and talk about what I love, which is fashion and just promote something and be involved in something with Kent State.”
Jordan discovered her love of fashion at a young age when she would insist on dressing herself. As she grew up, she refused to listen to those who thought she dressed weird, because she saw it as different. She began to embrace it by wearing her own styles and owning them.
“I didn’t realize it was something until high school when my superlative was ‘Best Dressed,’” Jordan says. “I realized people weren’t making fun of me. They actually liked it.”
Hanna came into her style and interest in fashion in a much different way. Growing up in a family of older brothers and younger sisters, she set her own trends. Although Hanna took a lot of influence from the music scene where she had begun attending concerts in middle school, she certainly did not have as much freedom as Jordan. Hanna attended a Columbus-based private school with a strict dress code, one that was not too fond of her pink hair or boots.
“I wore boots to school for a week, and no one had ever done it before so it wasn’t in the rulebook that you couldn’t wear boots,” she says. “You just have to wear dress shoes, and they were nice boots. Eventually they told me I couldn’t do that, but I kept doing it anyway.”
Despite a note from a stylist that was sent to her dean, Hanna failed conduct more than once for having a pink dye stuck in her hair.
“I guess that kind of helped me. I just wanted to rebel from my uniform, and wear the most crazy thing possible, because I knew it would piss off my teachers.”
Although both girls have interest in music and fashion, they have each chosen a specific path for their dreams. Hanna is an electronic media production major with hopes of working in the music industry while Jordan chose fashion merchandising with the dream of becoming a buyer.
“[Fashion] is the only thing I’ve ever had a passion for, so I figured I might as well go to school for it,” Jordan says.
Although Jordan would be interested in possibly designing her own pieces one day, she has decided to stick to fashion merchandising for now.
“I would like to design, but I just feel like there’s not much of a demand for it,” she says. “Ultimately I would just end up making my own boutique, and have my own clothing in there, and it would just take so much time and money that I don’t think I’ll have in the future.”
In addition to fashion, Jordan loves music. She says she gets her taste from her parents.
“I was like their love child, so they were still college students when I was born. I guess I kind of grew up just listening to whatever was popular in the 90s like Nirvana and stuff,” she says. “My dad was super into rock, and my mom was into Top 40 like Madonna. I can appreciate all kinds of music, even more metal music just because my dad is a total metal head.”
In addition to that aforementioned hometown radio station, Hanna also cites her love of music as coming from her family. She says she learned a lot from her dad, brothers and cousins throughout the years, all of which who helped her discover new music.
It’s Jordan and Hanna’s love of music and fashion that created the perfect mix for Watch Yo Nutz, a name that was accidentally created. The two DJs were walking to their audition from a tattoo shop where they had just been inked when it suddenly came to them. Hanna says they had been tossing ideas back in forth and used fashion and the squirrel part of Black Squirrel Radio as inspiration. They laughed at first when one of them tossed out the phrase “watch your nuts,” but then it stuck.
“We added a ‘z’ and made it ‘yo,’” Jordan says. “We had to spice it up and make it really funny,” Hanna added.
During the spring, the girls would talk about dresses and high-waisted shorts, but now that it’s winter, they say they’ll be discussing their beloved boots and cool leggings.
They often talk about what to wear, but also mention what not to wear. The duo pull ideas from what they see on campus for both categories and give shout outs to cool outfits.
“We won’t bash anyone, but we’ll just be like, ‘That person [is] not watching their nuts,’” Jordan says.
In addition to campus fashions, concerts provide a large amount of content. This is one of the places where you see the most controversial outfits, Hanna says. The nut-watching trend has even caught on with their friends. Many will yell, “Watch ‘em!” or ask if they’re watching their nuts tonight.
They’re hoping this will catch on even more with their soon-to-be printed t-shirts. These items will be produced on baseball tees with their name and a boom box on the front and the “rock on” hand and BlackSquirrelRadio.com on the back.
In addition to these items, the girls have thought about taking their show to a blog form. Hanna will be following her dream of working in the music industry by studying in California for the Spring 2013 semester. Because of this, Watch Yo Nutz may not happen. The girls hope to keep it alive by starting a blog and having their Facebook and Twitter continue to be fully functional to promote it.
Although nothing is set in stone for the future of Watch Yo Nutz, Jordan may continue the show without Hanna, at least for one semester.
“She can do a segment where she calls me,” Hanna says. “I’ll be like, ‘alright, just calling here from the beach, just saw a black squirrel.’”
“And I’ll be like, ‘well, I’m sitting here in a coat. It’s cold,’” Jordan added. “I’ll send you some sand,” Hanna joked.
Regardless of the format of Watch Yo Nutz, Jordan and Hanna will surely add a unique aspect to whatever they decide to do with their brand or lives in general. Catch Watch Yo Nutz Fridays 6 – 8 p.m. on BlackSquirrelRadio.comblog comments powered by Disqus