10 Questions with ... J.R. Ramsey
March 29, 2011
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
I've actually been with the same company (with one owner or another) since I got my start in the Summer of '99. I started as Promotions Director but I was really lousy at it so they rolled the dice and threw me on the air. I've been on the air ever since. In my time here with format changes or ownership changes, I've done shows on Top 40, Classic Rock, and Alternative stations.
1. How did you become interested in radio?
I think my interest was piqued when my current boss asked "Would you like to stop being a restaurant manager."
2. What was your favorite station to listen to when you were a kid and what do you remember the most about the station?
The one station that didn't play Country. I remember it the most because, well, they didn't play Country! This market, as small as is it is, was a wasteland as far as radio, especially 20-25 years ago.
3. Why has I-Rock been a successful alternative station?
My brilliant leadership! No, in all seriousness it's because we filled a pretty serious format gap in the market and we built on that initial success with intense branding, both of the station and of the individual jocks and shows. We are easily the most "edgy" station in the market and I think the listeners were tired of "safe" white bread radio.
4. How would you describe the I-Rock music and imaging?
We follow the active rock format musically. Our imaging is considered VERY edgy for the market and I push the envelope as far as I think we can get away with when I write sweepers. The station exudes attitude.
5. What may surprise people the most about the station?
We run two live shows a day and ZERO syndicated programming. All of our jocks are in house. Localism does count.
6. What part of your job do you like best? Least?
Doing live shows and interacting with the listeners is easily my favorite part. I'm a jock first and a PD second. My least favorite part would have to be producing imaging. I hate it more than I hate intestinal distress.
7. What are you most proud of since joining the station?
Wow, that's a tough one. I'd say just seeing the overall reaction to the station. It's been my baby since day one and, with the strong support of management, it's been really successful.
8. Fill in the blank: I can't make it through the day without __________?
9. What would surprise people most about you?
I'm a rock jock and I actually read books without pictures. I also use big words and know what they mean.
10. If you decided to completely change careers today what would you do?
I'd be King Of Norway.
What are your hobbies?
I'm a musician and have recorded 5 albums with different groups and worked on scores for short films and a documentary. I've also done voice over work for projects on both sides of the Atlantic. Oh, and I have a KILLER comic book collection. I should also mention I know more about professional wrestling than anyone in the world ...seriously.
Last non-industry job?
First record ever purchased?
Michael Jackson's "Thriller" was my first full length album but my first single was a 45 of Gordon Lightfoot's "Wreck Of The Edmund Fitzgerald."
Motley Crue and Tesla. It was the "Dr. Feelgood" tour. Tesla was WAAAAY better than the Crue!
Favorite band of all-time?
Easily the hardest question to ask someone with my weird musical tastes. I'd have to say Led Zeppelin but that will change the next time someone asks me.