Zach and I had some of the best times of our lives on radio. I’ve blogged about some of them here on my I-don’t-know-what-to-do-with-this-blog blog and shared some of our airchecks here. I think our success was based on the fact that we were not only self-deprecating but that we could throw each other down and roast each other every morning.
We created a Verbal Reality (That’s radio-speak for taking what an announcer says as true.) that had people in stitches every morning. For instance, I was gone for a week to get liposuction but the press release he created about me was that I went on a tour of India to visit various ashrams. In a week! And got married to a man named Oscar Bandot. In a week! And had three sons. In a week! I came back a week later, shocked to find some listeners actually believe the tales he wove.
(He got his payback of course when he disappeared and I announced he was getting certain parts of his… anatomy… altered. And on another day, that he was shooting a film in Hollywood. You get the picture.)
I’ve been cleaning my house in preparation for my move back to the US. Sifting through a ton of stuff is no easy feat both physically and emotionally but my goal is to squeeze my life into suitcases and boxes.
Being a packrat has its pros and cons. For the former, I have so many things of sentimental value; for the latter, I have so many things of sentimental value. The challenge is figuring out what I really need versus what I want to keep. My mantra is “be brutal about purging oneself of what is not necessary”. So while I’ve been separating my life into piles labelled “Keep”, “Donate”, “Discard”, I found more lessons learned from my time in radio.
These were put together by our Programming Director in NU107 in 1995, Claire Miranda. As soon as my life is more in order and the dust has settled, I’ll scan old pics and post either on my flickr or here. Until then, you’ll just have to Google these former bosses of mine that I keep mentioning.
It was a regular Tuesday afternoon staff meeting when I learned this. I had already been working in radio for more than a few years at this time in 1995. The NU 107 On-Air Staff were gathered around the long table of our Conference Room at Strata 200 at the Ortigas Center in Pasig.
Ron Titular (Station Manager) and Claire Miranda (Programming Director) had just started a mini-workshop for us to take us back to the basics of announcing. We were spending our meetings brushing up on technique and playing games like Mad Gab and Taboo to become better jocks and newscasters. Who woulda thunk that? Board games to improve on announcing. My, my I do declare.
I hope these little tips have been helpful in any way! Whether you’re a radio listener, an announcer, or a podcaster, I hope I’ve shared something of worth. I’ve actually enjoyed dumping all this information here on my blog. At least it’s somewhere else and not just cooped up inside my brain.
I’ve had other blogs waiting in line for this series to finish, but since this one keeps growing with each topic I come up with, they’ll have to wait. That and the fact that I’m obsessive about order will make me finish this first before moving on to another topic
We laid the ground work in befriending our SAPs and now that that’s out of the way, let’s move on to Playing with Your Voice Inflections.
This would be much easier to share if this were an audio blog that came complete with a podcast. But since I don’t have the toys to do that yet, I’ll do my best to describe how to play with your voice. And you can always stop by my Voice Library over on Vox to give me a listen.
I had the privilege of working for, and training under, some of the best people in Philippine radio. People like Al Torres (who is now in charge of 92.3 xFM), Ron Titular (former NU107 Station Manager who is now in charge of the The Edge Radio), Claire Miranda (radio goddess from 99.5RT and NU107), and Jake Agregado (Producer/Host of NU107′s The Morning Show with Jake and Joey, 1996-1997).
The reason I mention them is to give credit to the people I consider my mentors. They who did not shrink back to tell me I sucked and taught me how not to.
I’ll tackle Hosting/Co-hosting next, but for now I’ll just randomly dump my thoughts on solo announcing, AKA being the lone voice you hear sans banter with newscaster, traffic reporter and co-DJ who pops in the booth to annoy. We’ll do three parts on this – Follow your Station SAPs, Playing with Your Voice Inflections, and The Secret of Always Using “You”.
Apologies for taking a while to get back in here and continue with the series. Allow me to explain.
I’m online at the office all day and for some reason, I just never got around to downloading iTunes for my desktop. Call me a creature of order. iTunes goes with Apple and Windows Media Player goes with Windows XP. Wrong.
A podcast called JD’s Musical Alchemy finally got me to download iTunes and in turn, opened up a whole new world to me on my desktop!
That’s what I’ve been busy with. Subscribing, subscribing, subscribing to podcasts like there’s no tomorrow. That in turn got me excited about doing one myself with ex-morning show partner, Zach! Zach and Joey 2.0!
Once upon a time in radio land (at least in the Philippines) no talent was allowed on the air without being subjected to at least six months of training. This included the stereotypical duties relegated to trainees: the fetching of coffee; the fast food runs (or deliveries for breakfast/lunch/dinner); the categorizing of music; the writing of ad libs, the practicing of said ad libs; the graveyard spinning of 8 tracks (gawd, what are those?!), records (actual vinyl!), CDs, and eventually hard drives. All before even standing near an open mic.
Nowadays, jocks in the Philippines are hired on the basis of their pedigree, i.e. what developed country they’re from that gave them their twang and what face value they have to contribute to the station that is hiring them.Ooh. But I’m getting ahead of myself. Allow me to bite my tongue and hold that thought for a minute.
I was debating with myself on where, what, and how to start this mini-series of posts.
- Radio in the Philippines limits this geographically;
- Getting into radio is different the world over;
- Internet radio and podcasting have changed what we listen to so my experience may be irrelevant.
Decisions, decisions, decisions.
I realized that this is actually more of my way of committing to pen and paper (or shall I say electronic dots on hard drives) how it used to be when I was a jock, i.e. broadcast announcer/dj/morning show host. Sort of like a memoir slash guideline for anyone who might be interested to… listen.
I’ve been tossing around more ideas on what I’d like to share on this here blog o’ mine and have decided to share what I’ve learned in radio.
Putting together a daily morning show; the finer points of conducting an interview; what to do when hosting gigs come in and you have to stand in front of a crowd of thousands, or twenty.
Kind of like a guide/how-to for anyone who’s interested.
I’ll most likely intersperse with non sequitur posts on jobs and on faith. Which I’ve already been doing. Hmmm. I guess it’s the other way around then… The Radio Series will interrupt my… musings.
Not that I’m an expert in said field… or anything for that matter. But fourteen years and different formats – pop, jazz, alternative, and talk – did teach me some things that hopefully someone else might learn from.
Of course, this could all just be a ruse to get myself back in the game.
At least not now.
I missed blogging on the anniversary of the end of our show!
March 14, 2003. Wow! It’s been four years since I left NU107! It must be my preoccupation with living my current life sans rock stars and rock happenings. People who remember me from my season as a cool morning show host cannot fathom why I would leave all that behind.
I wish I could say I moved on to my dream job of writing for Conde Nast Traveller and alternately globe-trekking with Ian Wright on the telly, but truthfully, I leaped from ultra-creative to ultra-corporate when I signed up as Accent Training Manager for the then new call center industry. I traded in my 5AM alarm to get to my 6AM show for a 9AM bedtime and a 5PM alarm. My lunch hour was when the world was fast asleep past midnight. And because of my gift of gab from all my years in radio, I was consistently part of client presentations to help woo new business.