Val Hoeppner

Executive Director

Val Hoeppner is the executive director of WMOT 89.5, executive producer of Wired In, 895 Fest, 895 Sessions, 895 Feast and the AmericanaFest Day Stage presented by WMOT, World Cafe and NPR Music. Hoeppner joined WMOT in 2014 and helped transition WMOT from mixed format to American Roots in 2016.

Hoeppner also serves as the director for the Center for Innovation in Media at MTSU, supporting student media at Middle Tennessee State University.

Hoeppner moved to Nashville in 2008 to work for John Seigenthaler as the director of education for the Diversity Institute after a 20-year career in newspapers and media.

Val Hoeppner / WMOT

Sierra Hull's most recent album 25 Trips was released on February 28, 2020. Just before the album release, Hull joined WMOT for an interview and live performance video session at East Iris Studios in Nashville. 

Will Hoge is debuting his song "The Curse" on WMOT today to celebrate Public Radio Music Day. Hoge will release his album Tiny Little Movies June 26, 2020. 

Hoge was one of the artists who helped launch WMOT Roots Radio Sept. 2, 2016 and his special Public Radio Music Day video set from home is a continuation of his relationship with public radio music stations.

Val Hoeppner / WMOT

Honestly, we couldn't say it better than The War and Treaty does. Tanya and Michael Trotter both discovered music on public radio music stations. WMOT and pubic radio throughout the country welcomed the duo and amplified their music. Get inspired by their Public Radio Music Day Ambassador message and video from some of their WMOT performances.

Val Hoeppner / WMOT

WMOT and public radio stations throughout the country introduce you to new music and connect you with artist. To celebrate Public Radio Music Day, April 16, 2020 we put together a playlist of some of our discoveries during the past year.

Val Hoeppner / WMOT

WMOT and our video crew spent two days in February shooting music videos with Will Hoge, Sierra Hull, Katie Pruitt, Brian Wright, Tim O'Brien Band, Michaela Anne and Maya de Vitry. This playlist and collection of artists is a just a slice of the American Roots music you hear on WMOT. 

Starting at 9 a.m. April 16 WMOT will play 15 hours of concerts recorded at WMOT Wired In, 895 Sessions, 895 Fest and the AmericanaFest Day Stage. 

Val Hoeppner / WMOT

Jesse Dayton performed a stripped down duo set for WMOT's Wired In session from City Winery in Nashville Feb. 17, 2020. Dayton and his bass player performed songs from his most recent albums, including On Fire In Nashville, a seven-song EP featuring "May Have To Do It". The EP was recorded live at the Filming Station during AmericanaFest 2018. 

Val Hoeppner / WMOT

Kelsey Waldon’s country comes from northwest Kentucky with an esthetic born in Nashville’s studios in the 1970s. Her acoustic guitar was bolstered by Telecaster and pedal steel, the ideal cocktail for her stories of growing up (“Kentucky 1988”), the road (“White Noise / White Lines”) and tobacco farming (“Black Patch”). “Sunday’s Children” is possibly the bravest song on her Oh Boy Records album of last year, given that its warnings about church brainwashing would certainly not be taken to heart in her native terrain.

Rett Rogers

WMOT’s Ana Lee sat down with Nathaniel Rateliff at Blackbird Studios in Nashville to talk about his new solo album, And It’s Still Alright, out now on Stax Records. It’s an album he planned to make with producer, Richard Swift but wasn’t able to. Richard Swift passed away in 2018. Nathaniel goes into the recording process, making the album at Richard’s studio and his own home studio, how he’ll tour the solo record with a nine-piece band and how these songs came to life.

A tornado ripped through Nashville and Middle Tennessee early March 3, claiming the lives of 24, destroying homes and businesses, including The Basement East, a beloved music venue in the heart of East Nashville.

A growing list of fundraisers will raise money for tornado victims and relief funds throughout the city.  If you know of a tornado relief fundraiser please email details to and we'll add it to our list.

All Hands On Deck! A Benefit for our Hometown Benefiting The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee  

Val Hoeppner / WMOT

Watch Bonnie Bishop's video session from our 895 Sessions during SXSW from The Backstage at El Mercado in Austin, Texas. Bishop performed songs from her 2019 album, The Walk and her 2016 album, Ain't Who I Was.

Val Hoeppner / WMOT

Logan Ledger opened the show with the backing of only Luke Reynolds on electric guitar. Bay area native Ledger’s recorded sound is luxurious with groove and texture, but his voice is so outstanding that he can convey his dark Roy Orbison kind of vibe without drums or bass or keys, as on the Bakersfield noir number “Invisible Blue.” The song “River of Fools” had more swing and boogie, with some scat lyrics that called Roger Miller to mind. Leger’s voice fit the classic Jim Reeves ballad “He’ll Have To Go” like a well-worn boot.

Val Hoeppner / WMOT

Kendell Marvel wrapped up our January 21, 2020 Wired In session "with the full-force honky tonk rock and roll of veteran Kendell Marvel. With a baritone bazooka of a voice, his sound splits the difference between Hank Williams Jr. and Gregg Allman. Heads were banged during the opening number “Good For Me,” but that wasn’t the only tone, with the barroom swing of “Untangle My Mind” (co-written with Chris Stapelton) following close behind. And “Cadillac’n’” is a cruiser’s delight saturated with the electric blues.