10 Questions with ... Scott Gilbert
May 9, 2011
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
KTCZ/Minneapolis, MN; WDGYA/Minneapolis, MN; WWTC-A/Minneapolis, MN
1) What Got You Interested In Radio?
I was given a transistor radio in the spring of 1963. The first time I turned it on, it was already tuned to WLS AM, Chicago's Top 40 station. From the first song I heard I was hooked!
2) Who do you consider your radio mentor(s)?
Art Roberts, Dick Biondi, Larry Lujak. Mind you, I never met them when I was young but I listened to them daily as long as they were on the air when I lived in Chicago. The PD who influenced me the most was Bobby Christian who programmed KTCZ when I was there as a production intern.
3) What do you view as the most important issue facing radio today?
The perception that radio is a dead medium. Just because something is new doesn't make it good, and just because something is old, it's not necessarily bad. Yes, we do have to adapt and include new tech (Social Networking or HD for example) and use social networking, but we had better get our asses in gear and remind people why radio is still viable and vibrant.
4) How do you feel about the new royalty rate increases for Internet radio and proposed royalties for terrestrial radio?
I think that Composer royalties are fair. I think that paying PERFORMANCE royalties for broadcast radio stations is absurd. I feel that if a label wants to charge a station for playing their music, then the label should pay for a three minute commercial for their artist as well.
5) Do you believe that radio and the recording industry can come up with a fair compromise on royalty compensation for both Internet streams and terrestrial radio?
6) What can we be doing with our station web sites to better our stations as a whole?
By the nature of my job, I visit a lot of radio station web sites daily. I find a lot of them to be either out of date, missing information, or difficult to navigate to where I want to go?
7) What do you believe will be the next trend in music technology?
If the labels were smart, they'd create their own "cloud" of music that can only be listened to and not downloaded or kept in any way. Then behave like the Houston Tollway Authority, get subscribers to their cloud to place a deposit of, let's say $40 and give the subscribers their own personal code. Then deduct a couple of cents for every song they listen to, every time they listen to it. When the subscriber has used up most of their deposit, the label would charge the subscriber to bring the deposit back to $40. And for folks that want to OWN the music they like, they can still buy a download or a CD.
8) How do you feel terrestrial radio competes with the satellite radio and Internet these days?
Just fine. It's just the PERCEPTION that radio is failing that is wrong. Try listening to Internet radio when the power is out. Try and get critical information from a satellite station when a tornado is bearing down on you...
9) Your thoughts on Syndication and Voice-Tracking?
Personally, I'd much rather know that the voice I'm hearing is coming from someone sitting in the studio at the station to which I'm listening to. (Giving more people jobs, rather than giving fewer people more jobs!)
10) What is the one truth that has held constant in your career?
No matter how good you are or how careful you are, you'll still screw up.
1) Who is the most amazing talent you've worked with?
Brian Turner, who is still at KTCZ/Minneapolis.
2) What career path would you be following had it not been for this industry?
Would you like fries with that?
3) Tell us what music we would find on your MP3 player right now and what is it you enjoy about that particular selection?
I don't have an MP3 player. I don't think MP3s sound as good as a disc or vinyl. Plus, I don't want to lose the money I've spent on music when the battery goes totally dead and can't be re-charged.
4) What format does not exist that should? Would it work?
Hot AAA and yes, it could.
5) What was the biggest gaffe you've made on air? (dead air ... forget a mic was still on ... etc.)
I was a board op overnights on WDGY AM (Larry King's show). But I'd listen to my friend who was on at WCCO through the board. Once, after running our local spots, I hit the wrong button and put WCCO on live. I didn't catch it for five minutes.