10 Questions with ... Julie Pilat
February 7, 2012
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
Grew up doing Hip Hop at KUBE and College Radio at KGRG. Transferred to ASU and worked at Power 92 and The Edge in Phoenix. Returned to Seattle in '98 to be MD/middays at KUBE. I came to L.A. in 2002 as APD/MD at KIIS. Added 98-7FM MD stripes as we flipped it Alternative in 2008. Then became PD in 2009. I've continued in those roles while adding on the role as Alternative Brand Coordinator last fall.
1. Congrats on your recent promotion. What is your role as Clear Channel Alternative Brand Coordinator?
It's exciting. When I was doing KIIS & 987FM people would ask me what I thought my next move would be and I'd often say, 'I think my next job doesn't exist yet.' I was right! It's a new role --and I think the opportunities are endless. Weekly I work with Brad Harden and Chris Williams on Premium Choice. We get to be creative and find new ways to support artists, break music, and develop amazing experiences for our listeners.
We just launched a promotion with Bush in which a winner will fly with three friends to LA, go to Signal Snowboards, and get a one of a kind board built with Gavin Rossdale's guitar in it and an iPod Touch that will play the Bush iHeartRadio Channel. Bush will meet the winners at the snowboard factory and play a private acoustic set. After that they'll jump in a car, head to Big Bear, get a cabin & private lessons to test out their new board all weekend. And if that sounds crazy -- how could a snowboard be made with a guitar?
2. What was 987FM's biggest accomplishment in 2011?
We did a lot of exciting 'oh wow!' things I'll never forget like working with The Sunset Strip again on SSMF with Deadmau5 riding Tommy Lee's Drum Set/Roller Coaster outside on Sunset & Doheny or Incubus playing the 987FM Penthouse. However, I think our biggest accomplishment was the relationship we built with the local music community. We started a program where every month we feature an 'Artist In Residence' on 987fm.com. It's a local band that we weave into every aspect of our programming - they host our stream on iHeartRadio, we feature them on air, do performances, and more. Before they were ready for regular rotation we started Foster the People, GroupLove, Young the Giant, and AWOLNation were Artist in Residence.
JJ Corsini also launched Close To Home our local show on Monday nights at 10pm. The LA Local scene is on fire and I'm really glad we can activate locally to put the spotlight on everything that's happening in the streets. Monday, January 30th was our first Close to Home night at The Viper Room with Kade broadcasting live and Capital Cities headlined.
3. What is your big challenge for 2012?
Being both brilliant at the basics of radio programming while being innovative enough to connect with an audience who's habits and way they use social changes daily.
4. Tell us about your recent decision to add Sixx Sense with Nikki Sixx to late-nights and Listen Driven Radio to Wednesday nights on 987FM?
When Nikki started doing syndication a couple years ago I thought he was another celeb who thought radio is easy and get bored after six months. I also didn't think he was relative to our 'alternative' audience. I was wrong on both accounts. Nikki is one of the most driven, talented, passionate radio peeps I've ever come across. He makes himself relevant by being passionate about so many different things -- he's not only in one of the most historic rock bands but he's also a social media giant, photographer, author, and knows the alternative format inside out. He's in L.A. and a great resource for 987FM -- after seeing the reaction from our core audience every time we partnered with him on events I knew I HAD to find a way to make him fit. I'm really glad he's on the station daily.
5. What is most important to you when championing new music for the station?
Great partnerships and a plan -- breaking new music is so much more than flipping a light switch and adding a record. I look at new music like investing in the stock market -- you want to see your stock succeed. We take momentum, touring, marketing, social, film & TV licensing all into play when considering what might help connect... and of course usually we LOVE it.
6. What may surprise people about 987FM?
Getting to know our full staff, how deep our bench is, and how much support there is in the building for the station to win. So often the face of the station is the jocks and promotions --all of which are fantastic at 987FM! At the same time EVERY board op and part timer contributes to blogging and social for 987fm.com. Our Market Manager, Greg Ashlock, regularly comes to me with strategic partnerships and huge opportunities. Our sales team will race anyone to the performance room to get a glimpse at a new band. Our main integrated people, Patrick Ellis & JJ Corsini, weave that passion into 987FM.COM down to JJ being the host for our local show. When you walk into the station you can feel it - [- the enthusiasm is contagious and we are Rockaholics to the fullest.
7. How are you using Social Media?
At this point how we use social is almost as integrated to our programming as asking how music is integrated to the station. Every new artist we launch, promotion we run, event we are at all have social elements stretching across numerous platforms. It's an exciting time!
8. Fill in the blank: I can't make it through the day without _________?
Coffee (Seattle girl).
9. What excites you most about living in Los Angeles?
It's the only place in the world where the majority of the people make their living off of being creative.
10. As someone who is "obsessed over music," how do you devote your time to music for KYSR and KIIS?
It's not a job -- it's my life. So in any given week I may be seeing Watch the Throne at Staples then seeing Close To Home Bands Dead Sara at The Troubadour or Hanni El Khatib at The Bootleg.... it just all works out.
If you were forced to choose between KIIS and KYSR, which job would you choose? :
You can't pick which kid is your favorite -- it's impossible. It's a dream job to work everyday with a historic station like KIIS while also building 987FM from the streets.