Longtime radio host returns with gospel music

Published 9:28 pm Tuesday, May 2, 2017

“There’s three things I know. I love the Lord, I love gospel music, and I love you.”

Sound familiar? It’s none other than the warm, inviting voice of Mae Rodgers, a longtime radio host and emcee, going out over the airwaves on 104.5 FM.

After a yearlong hiatus, Rodgers is back on air at The Vine Connection on Market Street, sharing her Christian ministry through gospel music. The name comes from John 15:5: “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.”

The radio channel tried another genre for exactly 364 days, but listeners seemed to want their gospel back.

“Everybody really wanted gospel back. I wanted gospel back. So we’ve been praying,” Rodgers said. “It’s like a miracle. People told me that God was going to bring it back, and people would tell me they were praying.”

TECHNOLOGY: While gospel was off the air, Rodgers said she started to stream her radio program online, and the online format now has about 150,000 listeners. (Caroline Hudson/Daily News)

During those 364 days, Rodgers was still working in the same building, but she took her gospel music into an online-only format. The online station was a hit locally, garnering about 30,000 listeners, and now since Rodgers returned to the air, the internet station has grown to about 150,000 listeners.

“Not counting from Williamston to Greenville to Havelock, New Bern,” Rodgers said.

Originally from Lumberton, Rodgers now lives in Williamston. She makes the trek every day to Washington to run the radio show and wouldn’t have it any other way. Her schedule is flexible, and technology gives her the flexibility to do other things, too, rather than only sitting in one spot.

Gospel singer Clyde Felton said it has been amazing to see the support behind Rodgers. Although the station that took over last year played some gospel, he said he believes listeners missed Rodgers.

She brings her own style to The Vine — part preacher, part friend and certainly an inspiration. Rodgers said the radio station is her calling, and she comes to work every day to serve the Lord.

“I like music. I started out with country, but then as I got saved, I guess it’s just my passion,” she said. “I just love to do it. You know, it’s not about money. I’m not getting rich, but it’s sort of like it’s my ministry.”

Tune in to The Vine Connection online at www.mixlr.com/the-vine.com. 

EMCEE WANTED: Although the channel tried a new genre for a year, listeners seemed to miss Mae Rodger’s voice on the airwaves. (Caroline Hudson/Daily News)