10 Questions with ... Aaron Dicer
October 24, 2011
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
WONU (Shine 89.7)/Chicago, WPRJ (101.7 The Fuse)/Saginaw, MI, KWND (88.3 The Wind)/Springfield, MO
1) Did you have any early mentors in radio?
I fell in love with radio under the tutelage of Bill DeWees at Olivet Nazarene University in Broadcasting 101. I loved the idea of using solely audio to convey not just information but entertainment and emotion. Bill's passion for the ability of radio to actually make a positive difference was completely contagious, as evidenced by how littered the industry is with his students.
2) If you were just starting in radio today, and you knew what you know now, would you continue forward?
Nope, now that I've learned what it's really like, I wish I'd done something else, but I'm trapped now because it's the only thing I know how to do. In fact, if I could go back in time and talk to the younger me, I'd tell him to stay far, far away from this depressing shattered life that radio has brought to me.... Sorry. Yes. My answer is yes. Has anyone ever answered with a no? That would be a bummer interview, huh?
3) What is your favorite part of your job?
Every once in a while Chick-Fil-A brings me food. I mean it's nice to get calls about making a listener's morning easier or to be part of a company that genuinely cares about the community, but seriously, Chick-n-Minis. How do you beat Chick-n-Minis?
4) And your least favorite part?
People were not created to awake closer to midnight than noon. If I could sleep until 8, go work out, and then come do my show, you wouldn't even have to pay me. (Station managers and owners don't read All Access, do they?)
5) What does Christian radio need to do to break through to a mass audience on a more consistent basis?
Let the talent breath a little. Listeners connect to real people with real lives. Polish them and help them get better, but don't buff out all the things about them that make them real. Give them the freedom to make mistakes and encourage risk. Let them find their voice; don't craft it for them. Give them the ability to form their own brand apart from the station's brand. The best talents aren't a piece of your puzzle; you are a piece of their puzzle.
6) Who are some of your favorite on-air personalities?
I think Mike and Mike (ESPN radio) are a great example on how to work in a radio sub-genre (sports) and still appeal to a wider audience. I also enjoy Ryan Seacrest and Matt Siegal (Boston) who both in very different ways have found a way to connect with their listener despite how different they are from them.
7) If you could have any guest from any time past or present join you for a morning show, who would you have and why?
Atheist, author, and illusionist Penn Jillette. I think it would be fascinating to explore his Christian upbringing and dig deeper into his beliefs and values. And Jesus, of course, Jesus.
In fact can we arrange for the two of them to be on at the same time? You are insinuating that you have the power to make this happen, right? Tell me you aren't just teasing me with the question.
8) If you could have any other job outside radio or the music industry, what would it be?
Reality show host. I would also settle for reality show contestant.
9) Fill in the blank: I can't start the day without:
RSS feeds (Google Reader). Remember the days when you actually had to "surf" the Internet? Now the Internet surfs you.
10) And what do you do in your free time, if you have any?
Consume content. I down about three movies, 21 hours of TV and 34 podcasts a week. I'd call it an addiction but my years in the industry have taught me to call it something else: show prep.