10 Questions with ... Dusty Bee
May 19, 2014
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
- KFTZ/Idaho Falls - Weekends, Night Show, Middays - (2007 to 2013)
- KLCE, KFTZ, KCVI, KTHK - Idaho Falls - Promotions and Events Coordinator
- KLLP/KGTM - Idaho Falls/Pocatello -- Program Director/Morning Host - (2013 to present)
1) What Got You Interested In Radio?
I always enjoyed listening to radio. KFTZ was my station in high school. I would see the jocks around town, and always thought they were the coolest people around. After I couldn't hack the medical field, I went to an open audition, sweater vest and all (no joke) for KFTZ weekends. I was completely shocked when the PD called me back!
2) Who do you consider your radio mentors?
A name some may recognize as Wayne Richards. I always knew him as the guy with the million dollar voice. Wayne had the biggest, most familiar voice in east Idaho.
More directly Brad Collins PD of KFTZ! Brad is by far the most talented radio programmer I have ever meet, the coolest part is he is real, and he saw something in me and gave me a shot.
3) What makes your market unique? How does this compare to other markets or stations you have worked at?
Our market is VERY conservative. It's small but it is growing fast. We have a lot of newer stations that are competing for the first time after two BIG heritage stations in the market!
4) What is it about your show that you feel really makes it cut through?
First thing is that we just keep it real. We don't rehearse the lines too much. We keep it short, and honest, talking just a little bit less every hour during the morning commute. I do a solo show against the HILARIOUS Brad and Tara on the competing station. I can't compete as the funny "Ha ha" guy...so I'm the real, sensitive, play the music guy!
5) What do you view as the most important issue facing radio today?
The word that comes to mind is: "LOCAL." How does a local radio station compete in a world where syndication is king? My goal is to make Star 98 the most local, involved, and relevant radio station in town, as well as play a tight playlist, clean imaging, and have the most relevant local DJ's on the air. LOCAL for us starts from the bottom up with our imaging, events, music, online, social media, the morning guy holding babies and taking pictures....THAT is how small town radio competes in my opinion.
6) What do you like best about working in the Hot/AC formats compared to other genres?
I think we get to have the best of both worlds in HOT AC! We're still fun enough...add some night new music, but we get to keep it clean, and only play the biggest songs in the country! I think it brings a unique audience for our advertisers. Coming from Top 40 for so long, it took an adjustment, but I dig it.
7) What can we be doing with our station web sites to better our stations as a whole?
Be relevant and offer LOCAL content. We watch the numbers on every post, and we try to have a balance of the "Ha ha, that's funny" and "whoa! I didn't know that?" along with some "My neighbor did... content.
8) How do you stay in tune with your audience?
I ask questions everywhere I go. How are we doing? What can our DJs and our station do to better assist the community? We always go to community events to talk, and listen. We follow our competitor's movements with a microscope. 12 to 15 hour workday is normal for me and my staff.
9) What is the most rewarding promotion or activity your station has ever been involved with to benefit the community or a charity?
I realized early on that in order for a new DJ like myself to make waves in this community where the other DJ's were 10 to 20 year veterans, I had to go BIG or go home. So I did what comes natural to me as a person, charity work. I rode a Ferris wheel at the State Fair for 12 straight hours to raise money for the battered women's shelter. Was I sick? Absolutely! In fact when I finally got off and was finally alone I cried like a baby for an hour!
I have done a few other stunts to gain awareness for me, our station, and the charities we are involved in. It works because it's sincere. Keke Luv from Boise's KISS-FM is a huge example to me, "LIVE for 175?" Are you kidding me? Awesome!
10) What is the one truth that has held constant in your career?
Change always happens. You can roll with it, or fight against it. But it WILL happen.
How did you get your on-air name?
That is a great question. I still don't have the answer it just happened, and suddenly stuck!
What advice would you give people new to the business?
BE REAL! Be you. Don't be fake. Just because you're new doesn't mean you can make a splash. Don't be too careful, you'll have plenty of time to do that when you have more to lose.
What has been your station's biggest accomplishment?
Star 98 participates in and host a "Primary Children's Hospital" radiothon every year. Last year we raised $40,000 in just 24 hours! It's a huge undertaking for our small staff, but has been very successful!