Denver folk-music institution Swallow Hill Music announced today that Indie 102.3 DJ and Assistant Program Director Bruce Trujillo will be leaving her post at the radio station on June 30. She will become the nonprofit's new concert director starting July 12.
Trujillo has been a major presence at the independent Colorado Public Radio station, where she has championed local musicians, diversified programming, run Especial, a weekly hour-long program showcasing independent Latin-made music from the Americas, and hosted nighttime shows, building a broad fan base of listeners.
She's also behind the podcast Colorful Colorado Collaborations with Celesté Martinez of the band TúLips; the two have promoted BIPOC musicians and businesses throughout Colorado. In 2019, Trujillo launched the concert series Whiskey, Women and Song, pairing femme musicians with whiskey pairings.
She plans to continue with both projects into the future, and that commitment to the Denver music scene is exactly why she was tapped for the Swallow Hill position.
"Bruce is a force in this community," says Swallow Hill head Paul Lhevine. "Her time with Indie 102.3 as assistant program director and side projects are setting us up for success as she drives greater diversity in our performers, our genres, and the audiences we attract to Swallow Hill. She will be part of our team on the forefront of driving a look and feel at Swallow Hill that will make us more vibrant in the community."
Trujillo has big plans to expand Swallow Hill's presence into more parts of the Denver community, reconnect the group with nonprofits like Su Teatro, and bring on more local bands as opening acts at the organization's blockbuster summer concert series at the Denver Botanic Gardens.
While she's eager to reconnect with the bluegrass and folk music that she programmed for years in community radio before coming to Colorado Public Radio, Trujillo also plans to bring some of 102.3's indie sensibilities to the organization. To that end, she'll book mixed-genre shows designed to introduce audiences to sounds and communities they may have never explored.
In addition to booking concerts, she's planning to run poetry nights at the Swallow Hill Cafe, bridging Denver's thriving slam scene with musical programming.
Trujillo will be stepping into the shoes of longtime concert director and talent buyer Roger Menell, who left the organization in the fall to study landscape design. Menell, a thirty-year music-industry veteran, has stayed on through the summer as a contractor to oversee the Evenings al Fresco concerts at the Denver Botanic Gardens.
This is the second major loss for Indie 102.3 in recent years: In 2020, longtime programming director Jessie Whitten left her post to serve as a director at Levitt Pavilion, though she has continued to DJ on the station.
"I'm excited to go to Swallow Hill. It's kind of interesting leaving Colorado Public Radio," says Trujillo. "That was a dream job for a long time. Growing up on the Western Slope and growing up on CPR — it's kind of bittersweet leaving this entity that I grew up listening to and that I was excited to be a part of. It's weird, for sure."
Even after leaving her current job, like Whitten, Trujillo will continue as a DJ at Indie 102.3 and host Especial and weekend shows.
"I wasn't ready to be done with radio totally," says Trujillo, "so I'm really grateful."