6A        Morning Edition
9A        Music
3P        Fresh Air
4P        All Things Considered
6:30P  The Daily

7P        Eclectic After Dark
banner101 3

artist hide caption

toggle caption Marrie Weigel /Courtesy of the artist

Matt Allen, who records under the name Nur-D.

Marrie Weigel /Courtesy of the artist

As a rapper, the Twin Cities-based artist Matt Allen goes by Nur-D – and the name kind of fits. "It's something embedded into my soul," Allen tells Morning Edition. "Comics, Dungeons & Dragons, professional wrestling...."

His positive music has made him one of the most popular artists in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area. But, when George Floyd was murdered by a former Minneapolis police officer a year ago this month, Nur-D's life took a new turn.

At a memorial site for Floyd the day after his murder, Allen and some friends ended up as ad-hoc providers of medical attention to protestors – he came back the next day. And the next. His involvement led, last May, to Allen helping establish Justice Frontline Aid, an organization which aims to "create the safest environment possible" for activists. "As soon as we showed up looking like we knew what we were doing," Allen says, "and we certainly did not, no one gave us like, riot medical training before [Laughs] – it was like a beacon for everyone who wanted to help, but didn't know how."

As part of Morning Edition's Song Project, we reached out to Allen asking him to write a song exploring his personal experiences over the past year. He returned with "One Step Forward," in which he finds reason for hope in the progress of the last year, and recognition of the long road ahead.

This interview has been edited for length and clarity.

Nur-D, "One Step Forward"

Rachel Martin, Morning Edition: Have you always been so comfortable in your skin?

Nur-D: I mean, it's a survival mechanism. When you're a Black kid in a majority-white space, you either get real cool with yourself really quickly, or you push out. And I was lucky enough to be able to get real cool with myself.

So, the protests kick off – how are you absorbing all of it?

I went to the spot where [George Floyd] was murdered, the very next day, along with hundreds of other people. And as we were there, as people were speaking and talking and we started filling the streets, the Minneapolis Police Department, 3rd Precinct, came out without warning and began to shoot at the crowd. Men, women, children, all choking on massive amounts of tear gas – people that weren't even at the protest.

I was brought over to a cache of medical supplies that had been abandoned – and I was like, "Yo, I can't just leave with these people being hurt, and no one's around to do anything about it." ... The reality of the situation is, in my head, as silly as it sounds ... "with great power comes great responsibility."

So we stayed, a couple of my friends, a couple strangers – we got all the medical supplies, we started walking around patching people up, handing out masks, doing first aid... and we did that for a whole night, and we came back in the morning and kept doing it.

The more that I saw, I tell everybody: "Blood stains." It was sort of me expanding what I talk about. I'll still talk about these other [topics] – body positivity, loving yourself. But I also talk about issues surrounding black and brown communities. And it was scary to change.

What was scary about it?

Okay, the reality of the situation is this: I had been given a very large platform because my music was safe. And when I mean safe, I mean safe for the majority of white people who would want to listen to it. So here I come, taking a hard lean into racial justice and race politics. It was scary like, "Yo, Matt, you could lose everything."

I am very blessed to say that I was wrong. And I preface that by saying I did lose people; I had people comment racist things on my Twitter and my YouTube. That being said, I gained so much more than I lost. So many people were like "Wow, thank you for saying something about this." And because I was being true to myself, which has always been the point of Nur-D, I think that translated over really well to all of my friends, all of my fans, people who've never heard me before. "So he's going to tell us how it is, all the time, even if it's not easy."

That's your superpower.

Trusting in my gut, being myself even when it's not easy – that's my superpower. And it's one I've had to develop.

Pin it
  • 104.9 FAQs
  • Join Us!
  • 104.9 Insiders
  • SoCo Baby
  • SoCo Calendar
  • Talk To Me
  • Hiding Places
  • Birdwatch

Why is 104.9 becoming an NPR station?

104.9 FM has been purchased by Northern California Public Media. The former KDHT is now KRCB FM. The frequency has been changed, by permission of the FCC, from a commercial station to a non-commercial station. NorCal Public Media wanted to acquire a larger, more powerful radio frequency, and Amaturo Sonoma Media Group was willing to sell 104.9 to NorCal Public Media.

Why did KRCB need another signal?

The former KRCB FM Radio 91 signal covers a very small area, and only a portion of Sonoma County. KRCB FM listeners have made it clear over the decades that what they wanted most from KRCB was to expand the geographic reach and signal strength of the public media news and music service. Over the course of two years, NorCal Public 



KRCB 1049 radio logoBrowse around our site and you'll see a few ways you can join in the effort to make KRCB 104.9 a great community radio station for Sonoma County. You can record a message that we play on-air, give us some new ideas, and keep abreast of what we're doing. New ways to engage with us our coming soon.
But there's an old fashioned one that's really important to us: become a member! We're making a big commitment to serving Sonoma County better, and while we really do want you to listen, and participate, helping pay for all of this would be really helpful too! Any amount helps, and we've got lots of cool gifts including some great CDs curated by our DJ Doug Jayne.
Please click:   Thank you!
Welcome to the new KRCB 104.9. This is a forum so we can hear from you, answer your questions, and generally exchange ideas about how we can improve.
FB screenshot
Read More
“Sonoma County Baby” began in 2013 as a way to connect new Sonoma County mothers with the history of the county. In cooperation with Sutter Health, a nice book was published that featured the stories of several dozen Sonoma County families, describing how they each came to Sonoma County. The book was given to new moms. The project’s website is here:
Now, we want to put stories like this on KRCB-FM, Sonoma County’s NPR station. How and when did your family come to Sonoma County? Does your story include some old Sonoma County landmarks that some of us might remember? What was interesting about it? Finding the interesting part is important! These recording are all short, less than a minute or under 100 words. That’s not enough time to tell the whole story—just the highlights. Here's a sample script that’s about the right length. Click "Read More" to hear what others have submitted.
Read More
Be on KRCB 104.9...answer this month's "Talk to Me" question: What does Sonoma County need that it doesn't already have? 
You can do a recording right from your computer or smartphone, but please use an external microphone (ear buds are good enough). Don't worry, you can try as many times you like until you get a "good take." We won’t hear any of the bad ones. After you finish, the page will give you a chance to listen and decide if you like it. Once you get a good one, you'll be asked for your name and email address. Then hit "Send.” (Click "reset" if you would rather try again.)
Go to the recorder page
Each week, Santa Rosa-based travel writer Dana Rebmann introduces us to great local spots to visit. Listen on-air for the latest. Or click here:
 Crane Creek Regional Park
 Marijke's Sculpture Grove
Read More

Listen to the Sonoma County Birdwatch!

fullerThroughout the week, we play short segments about what birds are out in Sonoma County and what they sound like, from Harry Fuller. Harry spent his working career as a TV and Internet newsman in the Bay Area.  He’s been leading bird trips and writing about birds for thirty years.  He has written three natural history books: Freeway Birding, I-5 San Francisco to Seattle; San Francisco’s Natural History, Sand Dunes to Streetcars; Great Gray Owl in California, Oregon & Washington. He blogs regularly about birds:  And he frequently leads birding trips on the Pacific Coast. Check him out at

Northern California
Public Media Newsletter

Get the latest updates on programs and events.