10 Questions with ... "Big Scott Allen" Scott Jendersee
June 29, 2015
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
- Brookings Radio Group / Digity Media
- KBRK (B93.7)/Brookings, SD - PD, Morning Drive (Hot AC/CHR) - 2014 to Present
- KITN (93.5 Rock It FM)/Worthington, MN - PD, Morning Drive (Rock) - 2013
- KQSF (Q95.7)/Sioux Falls, SD - PD, Afternoons (Adult Hits) - 2002 to 2013
- KYBB (B102.7)/Sioux Falls, SD - PD, Afternoons (Classic Rock) - 1997 to 2001
- KFXS (The Fox)/Rapid City, SD - PD, Afternoons (Classic Rock) - 1994 to 1997
- KPAT/Sioux Falls, SD - MD, Overnights (CHR) - 1992 to 1994
- I started in radio at KORN-AM, Mitchell, SD - 1986
1) What Got You Interested In Radio?
I grew up with radio. I used to listen to America Top 40 with Casey Kasem and write down the chart position of every song on the countdown. It's always been a big part of my life. I remember listening to WOW-AM/Omaha, a huge Top 40 flame thrower in the 70's, along with stations out of Mitchell and Sioux Falls. With only three channels on the TV and no tech to speak of at the time, all of my free time was spent listening to music and the radio.
2) Who do you consider your radio mentors?
I've worked with some legendary people who are still thriving in the business today. Scott Maguire, a staple of Sioux Falls radio since the 70's, is one of my best friends and the one person who captures the sound of "Midwest" radio better than anyone I know.
Tommy Austin, who got his start in Sioux Falls as well, is now in Chicago and continues to be a major player for iHeart Media. He eats, sleeps and breathes radio. His stations have always been flawless and he's a really great guy.
Mark Houston programs the top country station in Rapid City (KAT Country 98.7) and is someone I always bounce ideas off. And the most famous name that's still on my contacts list is Michael Steele (KIIS-FM, Indie 103.1, among several other huge stations). I've known him since college (University of South Dakota) and he's still one of the best radio guys in the world, and a great friend.
3) You refer to B93 as a "Hot AC/Top 40 hybrid." Please give us an example of how you ride that fine line between these two formats?
It's a very fine line. Look at the charts. About 80% of the Top 40 chart is Hot AC product. We're labeled as a Hot AC, but Brookings is also home to a Division I college (South Dakota State University) so we also need to dip our toes in alternative and dance pools, too. You'll hear songs that are in the Pop Top 20, but still haven't broken into Hot AC. Plus I'll draw off the Top 10 Alternative chart and find songs that fit the sound of the station. The station lives in the 2000's with the 80s and 90s stripped off except for some specialty programming. But as we try to appeal to youth, we also realize Brookings is a small city with listeners who spend their entire day with us. So it's a balancing act of being mass appeal while not being too repetitive.
4) What makes your the Brookings, SC market unique? How does this compare to other markets or stations you have worked at?
The college (SDSU) is the fabric that holds this town together. Since going Division I a few years back, a national spotlight has been shining on the town. Add to that, there's a real sense of pride that comes from being a haven for business with 3M, Bell Brands (Laughing Cow & Babybel Cheeses) among many others.
5) What is it about your station that you feel really makes it cut through?
For one, the signal sounds great! It's one of the strongest in the area with great reach and an amazing engineer, Michael Quinn, maintaining it. He is also the group OM and does mornings on our classic rocker and middays on B93-7.
6) How are you using social media to market your radio station?
We are using Facebook and Twitter on a daily basis for contesting, plus for news and weather updates.
7) What do you view as the most important issue facing radio today?
Keeping millennials as part of our audience. Everyone can program their own stations on their smart phones or tablets now. To fight that, you need find ways to tie into the community, which we do a great job of in our radio group. I'm a big fan of Spotify and having access to 95% of every recording ever is amazing, but Spotify and Pandora can't be local.
8) How do you prep yourself for your radio shift?
I commute an hour to the station each morning from my home in Harrisburg, SD (about 60 miles south) so I have a chance during the drive to scan the dial for news and other info from other local stations and satellite radio too. I also spend a great portion of my day on news and entertainment websites (even during the show) because something is always happening somewhere. In fact, I just found out that Dick Van Patten died while I was writing this.
9) How do you stay in tune with your audience?
I immerse myself in pop culture. Follow what's trending in pop culture and the news. I use my own voice, if I hate something, I don't pretend to like it because it's popular. But then I don't belittle others who may like it. Unless we're talking about Florida-Georgia Line fans.
10) What advice would you give people new to the business?
Network! Go to conventions. Get yourself heard and seen. Do it because you love it, not because it's easy. Don't be a jackass with a huge ego. Be sure to get fired at least once, because it happens to everybody. Yes, you too! It's also important to be in a format you're passionate about.
What do you do in your spare time?
I've been in a cover band called "Too Drunk To Fish" for the past 18 or so years. It started as a Jimmy Buffett cover band and has blossomed into a successful group that plays 40 to 50 dates a year.
What was the first concert you ever attended?
The Replacements, 1987, Sioux Falls Convention Center.
Who is your favorite band of all-time?
It's a tie: Talking Heads, Jimmy Buffett and the Coral Reefers.
Pandora, iHeart, Apple, Amazon, Spotify, and many others now offer music in The Cloud. What effect will these new music services have on the radio and music industries?
I believe radio needs to be itself more than ever and play to its strengths. Locality, spontaneity, being their when its community needs it most during bad weather and disasters. The Cloud can't do that...yet.
What is the most rewarding promotion or activity your station has been involved with to benefit the community?
I was a part of the Children's Miracle Network Radiothon for many years in Sioux Falls. It meant a lot to me because I have a preemie son who was born at 25 weeks and weighed only 1lb. 11oz. My wife, Lynn, and I have been big supporters of CMN as they provided the resources to keep our son (Finn) alive for the 98 days he spent in the Sanford Children's Hospital NICU and helped him become the amazing and entertaining five-year-old he is today.
What is the one truth that has held constant in your career?
The most rewarding stations I've been a part of are the ones who can identify an audience and serve their needs better than anyone else.