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Thread: What will it take for me to become a radio personality?

  1. #101
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    Quote Originally Posted by fordranger797 View Post
    I am slightly confused. Is there really a connection between working as a music DJ for a party and working as an air personality on the radio? .
    No. Radio does not send you "babes, booze and blow" over the airwaves. That happens at clubs and many parties.

    A party is a party because it is a manufactured environment. It is a mood experience different from the workday and home life. So the kinds of music, behaviour, conversation, and dress are very different.
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  2. #102
    stevensonair
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    "Freeform radio is really only a concept that can be observed on college radio stations (which only garner listeners from fellow students who want to hear their friend playing some sort of anime or didgeridoo music."

    I think the 1 commercial freeform FM in the US, KHUM, the most popular station in its market, would beg to differ with your oversimplification of the format. As would many of the stations that made classic rock classic to begin with, and were the forerunner of your beloved Triple A format. And a pretty influential brand called KEXP, which is also DJ-selected in their programming. Correctly done, freeform takes a great deal of attention and skill. A skill much different than Top 40 formats, but a skill nonetheless. Skilled selection and blending of music is not easily done.

    I would suggest one thing it takes to become a radio personality is a sense of history and context, and respect for the ideas and experiences of others.

  3. #103
    Quote Originally Posted by stevensonair View Post
    "Freeform radio is really only a concept that can be observed on college radio stations (which only garner listeners from fellow students who want to hear their friend playing some sort of anime or didgeridoo music."

    I think the 1 commercial freeform FM in the US, KHUM, the most popular station in its market, would beg to differ with your oversimplification of the format. As would many of the stations that made classic rock classic to begin with, and were the forerunner of your beloved Triple A format. And a pretty influential brand called KEXP, which is also DJ-selected in their programming. Correctly done, freeform takes a great deal of attention and skill. A skill much different than Top 40 formats, but a skill nonetheless. Skilled selection and blending of music is not easily done.

    I would suggest one thing it takes to become a radio personality is a sense of history and context, and respect for the ideas and experiences of others.
    I see your point. I looked into KHUM, and they look like they have something pretty unique going. I tend to look at this matter from the perspective who knows that few listeners care about freeform radio if it is done improperly. Unfortunately, I have yet to come across a college station that seems to be programmed well enough to appeal to a large audience (with the exception of KEXP, which does well). Of course, the goal of college radio is not to heavily program, but at the same time, it just doesn't work when you have three hours of jazz, followed by heavy metal, and other random genres. I just don't feel that people who listen to the radio pay attention to scheduling; rather, they want to tune into the radio at any given time of day and get some sense of linearity.

    This is also one of the reasons why I listen to AAA (as you noted). AAA formats require a careful formula, and it just will not work if you try add too many songs that are new to the listeners. Of course, the opposite is also true when companies desire very tight playlists that don't throw in something risky once in a while.

  4. #104
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    Quote Originally Posted by stevensonair View Post
    I think the 1 commercial freeform FM in the US, KHUM, the most popular station in its market, would beg to differ with your oversimplification of the format.
    Eureka / Arcata has not been rated since 2011, and in the last Eastlan survey, KHUM was #8 in the market.

    http://www.allaccess.com/eastlan/q/m...reka-arcata-ca (you need to register... it is free.

    And a pretty influential brand called KEXP, which is also DJ-selected in their programming.
    Define "influential". That is a station that gets about a 1 share and averages below 25th in the market. I understand that low rated stations in some niche formats can exercise influence over a narrow area of music or programming, but what does this self-described "variety format" station do that makes it influential?
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  5. #105
    Quote Originally Posted by DavidEduardo View Post



    Define "influential". That is a station that gets about a 1 share and averages below 25th in the market. I understand that low rated stations in some niche formats can exercise influence over a narrow area of music or programming, but what does this self-described "variety format" station do that makes it influential?
    I would definately NOT call KEXP influential. An example of influential radio in the Seattle market would be the old KMTT 103.7. KEXP is a decent version of your standard college abomination station. I am not saying that it isn't a respectable station, but it doesn't have any sort of legacy, and probably never will.

    This is the exact reason as to why I would like to work my way into the business, as opposed to having to do college radio. I have seen what happens at a professional radio station (regardless of the quality and budget), and I compare that to how pointless so much of the programming is on college radio. I get questions from people all of the time asking if I am going to do college radio when I have the ability, and the answer is always "unfortunately".

    Please do not address this comment as being ignorant to what it will take to get into the radio business. I realize that working at a college station may be necessary if I cannot work my way in. However, I can already predict how I am going to feel about it. No continuity, no audience, no programming.

    This song (posted below) is to the college radio business what 13 inch colour cathode TV's are to the motel industry.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EstPgi4eMe4
    Last edited by fordranger797; 07-31-2014 at 12:16 AM.

  6. #106
    stevensonair
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    Apologies for the ratings inaccuracy - I had been told that KHUM had ranked #1, and I know that there have been several newcomers that further splintered the market - I do however, think KHUM (and KSLG, its sister station, which programs pure alternative, and KWPT - which airs a broader than average classic hits format) are performing quite well (judging from the link David posted) while providing a different take on local radio, both musically and in the community involvement they do. I have a great deal of respect for the balance of art and commerce they're managing at Lost Coast Communications.

    KEXP's influence in the Seattle cultural community is evident - in the shows they bring to town, in the programming they create, in the fact that their listeners pay for the station (it isn't NPR), in the respect and importance places on the station by the music industry, and their coming expansion into new facilities and as a program provider to the community - in addition, much of the technological experimentation they've done as a result of their university affiliation has been interesting to the wider broadcast community - and much of their video content is shared worldwide for their studio sessions. KCRW is another example - not highly rated, but influential with music supervisors and creatives - some of that influence filters into the broader music world and even impacts song choices for mainstream television.

    I suppose it all depends on how one defines "influential" really.

  7. #107
    UPDATE:
    I heard the other day that I might put on the air live here in the next few weeks to host a show. Does anyone have any advice if there if they end up giving me the "green light"?

    So far I have two goals for my potential show:
    1. Take, edit, and play a phoner using the phone editor (A 360 systems call box; I know the basic idea of how to record and play calls, but the editing may take some practice).
    2. Provide at least one interesting detail about the song/artist that was just played at each stop-set.

    Its funny, being a radio personality is a lot harder than it seems. I'm pretty nervous about this despite how badly I want to do it.

  8. #108
    Quote Originally Posted by fordranger797 View Post
    I would definately NOT call KEXP influential. An example of influential radio in the Seattle market would be the old KMTT 103.7. KEXP is a decent version of your standard college abomination station. I am not saying that it isn't a respectable station, but it doesn't have any sort of legacy, and probably never will.
    KEXP is only important because of its legacy as KCMU in the late 1980's.

    When they were KCMU in the late 1980s and early 1990's, they mattered. After they became KEXP, they became a corporate copy of what they were in the late 1980's.

    The transformation started occuring during the 'mandatory growth' era in 1989-1990 or so. The music started mattering less and less, and appearing to be a clone of KUOW that happened to play alt rock mattered more and more.

    The only reason KEXP is still considered influential is because of its history as the station that first played Nirvana, Soundgarden, and Mother Love Bone (pre-Pearl Jam).

    But that was when they were KCMU. When they were KCMU a band could drop off their tape and if the MD liked it, it might get played.

    That could never happen today. Too commercial an atmosphere there now.

  9. #109
    Quote Originally Posted by fordranger797 View Post
    2. Provide at least one interesting detail about the song/artist that was just played at each stop-set.
    This is what I strive to do every time I crack open the mic. It drives me nuts when a "personality" just gives artist & title, especially on a Classic Hits/Rock station. (We know the song already, tell me something I don't know!)
    So, it's been 4 months.....how's it going?

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