10 Questions with ... Bill Cain
July 10, 2012
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
I started in radio after returning from the first Gulf War in 1991 at (now defunct) 107.5 WZZQ in Terre Haute, IN. I literally showed up once a week at the studio asking the PD Todd Holman for a job and following them to remotes. I think today it's called stalking... He finally gave me a job changing the CDs for "In The Studio" & "Flashback."
- 1991-1993 -- WZZQ overnights
- 1994 -- WMGI weekends
- 1996 -- WYNG weekends
- 1997 --WKDQ Weekends
- 1998 -- WJPS nights
- 1999-2004 -- WWSY PD
- 2003-2004 -- WFMS weekends
- 2004-2007 -- WXTT/WCFF PD
- 2007-2008 -- KMSO/KHDV/KDXT Director Of Programming
- 2008-2009 -- WMGI/WWSY/WINH/WPRS Operations Manager
- 2009-2012 -- WMGI/WWSY/WIBQ/WPRS GM/GSM/OM
- 2012-Current -- WMGI/WXXR/WIBQ/WPRS/WBOW-FM/WBOW-AM OM
1. How did you become interested in radio?
I was really interested in radio in High School. To be honest I thought Speech class would be an easy credit and there were some pretty hot girls in the class. From that one class...I am here today.
2. What led to the decision to flip the station to Alternative?
Over the last seven years, WWSY had been a very safe Classic Hits station and for those that knew about it, they liked it. The problem was that there were two Classic Rock stations, two Classic Hits stations, and a AC/Hot AC all in the market...playing a lot of the same music. If you turned on the radio station and couldn't see the dial position, you would have had no idea which station you were listening to. Ultimately we decided to research the market and see if there were any holes for the audience that was here, and what those holes were. We found this as one of the most attractive options because of the passion of the listener and the unavailability of New Rock music in this market.
3. How would you describe the music and imaging on X95.9?
The music on X95.9 is based in the Alternative genre but every single song was hand picked for this market. There are songs that will show up in the AAA and Active Rock list as well but for this market...putting a name on it such as Alternative isn't important. The market has been starved for new music for many years and that is why we chose the positioning statement, "Terre Haute's Modern Rock."
As for the imaging, we are introducing the music to the market so it is built to complement that and get our name out at the same time. It is not in your face and does not take attention away from the true star...the music. We have a couple of great voices for imaging...Tommy Fox which actually works at WIXX in Green Bay and Gabrielle Nistico, which we located through Voicehunter.com.
4. What makes the station unique?
The Music. No other station in the market plays the music we do...or anything close to it. The only crossover songs that we have, with any station in the market, are with our sister CHR station, and those are very few.
5. Tell us about the X95.9 staff and why you were able to retain the air staff after flipping from Oldies?
In this day of voice tracking, the previous format was filled with voice trackers already. We did have local people in place but they already had other jobs within the cluster. When we flipped the format, they simply had one less job to do. Our current staff is still somewhat voice tracked but we have the best of the best from our overall company and locally to choose from.
6. What would an outsider find most surprising about the Terre Haute radio market?
That we have an Alternative radio station. Most small markets 200+ tend to stay to the Country, AC, Classic Hits, Classic Rock, and Hot AC formats and in our town we have all of that plus CHR and Alternative.
7. How have you been getting the word out about the station?
We purposely did a soft launch with this station. We have been using online and social networking to do most of the work. It has been very successful for us so far. In 1 week we more than doubled what the last station had for web traffic and our Facebook likes are now up to half of what we had with the old format. That's seven days in the new format vs. seven years in the old one.
8. What is your biggest challenge with the station?
Making sure that enough people know about it so that when January rolls around our report card has an "A" on it.
9. Fill in the blank: I can't make it through the day without _________?
Asking total strangers if they have listened to the new station...and acting like I'm just some Joe that found it on his own.
10. What would surprise people most about you?
I am 42 and am completely addicted to Call Of Duty: Black Ops!
What are your hobbies?
What are those? Oh...you mean doing music logs from home.
Last non-industry job?
Union Carpenter (L.U.90 Evansville, IN)
First record ever purchased?
High Notes by Hank Williams Jr.
Sonny & Cher or Bob Dylan...not sure.
Favorite band of all-time?