10 Questions with ... "Fonseca" aka Aaron Fonseca
July 28, 2015
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
I have been having an affair for over 20 years with radio. I have been in love with radio all my life. I have been producing, imaging and hosting shows in radio since the 2oth Century. Yes, I'm that old. Whether in front of the mic, in front of an audience, or making imaging stand out like solid gold – I have done a LOT like…
106 KMEL in the 90's, The Point In Minneapolis, Morning Drive in Ventura B95.1, 97.1 FREE FM Los Angeles, STAR 98.7 Los Angeles, KFWB Los Angles, KEARTH 101 Los Angeles, 92.7 Jill FM, Energy 92.7, WILD 94.9, STAR 101.3
I am NOT done, yet. I plan on having this affair until I die.
1. First, how and why did you get into radio?
I woke up every morning listening to Dr. Don Rose on KFRC. I wanted to do what he did and create the magic that my friends still talk about today. I volunteered at KMEL – the heart of music in the ‘90s in San Francisco putting music wheels (I told you I was old) on and off for the jocks. They taught me the essence of drawing in listeners and engaging them not only in the music, but into the "show." I love hearing my voice entertaining everyone – ask all my teachers who have given me detention through the years.
2. You're somewhat of a polymath in radio, hosting music and talk shows, doing imaging, programming, consulting, hosting podcasts, producing syndicated shows, appearing on both terrestrial and satellite radio, and finding time to do P.A. work for a minor league baseball team. First, how would you describe your career right now -- what do you consider yourself, first and foremost?
I love to always be cutting edge – not just for me but for the show and for the listeners. I am ready to bring everyone to the party and that is why it is so great to work for TuneIn. Working alongside great programmers like Andrew Bock and Kevin Straley is turning me into a great sports- and music-driven programmer at TuneIn, which I love doing.
If I have learned anything through the years, it's that nothing stays the same, change is a constant, and that goes for radio, too. Now with the technology of the 21st Century I can reach millions of people whether it is through my imaging work at TuneIn or via my podcast show on "Your Nerd Side."
Whatever the rest of the century brings to show – I am ready to be that position to be part of the show to always produce solid gold, not just for a few, but for millions.
3. You're heavily into digital media these days -- Do you see digital (streaming, podcasting, etc.) ever surpassing broadcast radio in audience and/or revenue, and if so, how far out is that day?
It's already happening. TuneIn already covers most radio stations, including CBS, Entercom, Alpha Media, sporting events, and so many other radio broadcast outlets. Our audience is that average driver on the road that is frustrated on finding or losing his FM signal and turns to the easiest outlet: TuneIn, where he can find his podcasts, radio stations across the world, or sports. Right now, every day, more and more are turning off their car radio and turning on their cell phone.
4. Your podcast focuses on "nerd culture," something I have some interest in as well -- how did that come about for you, and what makes your show stand out among the many podcasts in that category?
This is my core that has been covered up all these years with radio coolness. I noticed that all I was doing when talking with folks on the streets, on bus rides, at home to my kids, and even to my old lady, was about nerd culture – so why not my listeners?!
So I bring everything in my life from my studios that echo nerd nation to the latest nerd news to the world. But I like to give my show some pizazz. I have an eclectic guest list who come to the show along with a colorful group of commentators that range from guests who give their female, kid, or odd guy point of view perspective. It is not just a show about explaining things or just unveiling Easter eggs – it is a fresh new show that involves every type of listener out there!
5. Who are your radio mentors and influences?
Dr. Don Rose, who I grew up with, and Rick Chase, who I listened to throughout my high school years. Most recently, Jhani Kaye, the great late Lee Marshall, and Rich Boerner.
6. What's the single (you get only one) most memorable moment in your career so far?
Well, there was that interview I did in person with William Shatner on the air and I totally forgot about the show. I was with Captain Kirk! But there was that time, too, with my daughter who was four years old, who was reading out the countdown on the radio with me.
Yet, the number one most memorable moment was when all the most important things came together for me. I was back in my hometown, San Francisco. I was on the air, had my own website to connect with listeners across the nation, and I was announcing the San Francisco Bulls Hockey team. There I was in the stadium on opening day, surrounded by everything and everyone I love! I had family, friends, old classmates and Bay Area listeners there while I was kicking off the game with celebrities from the World Series Champions, the San Francisco Giants, and putting it all together – broadcasting, entertainment and the love of connecting family, people, and a great show, together. It was a magical synergy that I strive to create every day in my life.
7. What makes good imaging? Give us an example of when you've heard, or done, something and thought, yeah, that's great radio imaging…
It is out of the box writing, creative writing that engages the audience that makes them think about the brand. The imaging is never the same and it is never prepackaged. A master of imaging is able to pull the strings of the emotions of the listeners. It is kind a like making music.
I thought I heard some great imaging when I was hired to launch a few stations across the nation and was given free range. It was awesome!
8. What do you do for fun?
RADIO! (on-air, weekends in the Bay Area)
I love traveling the country and talking to folks. I don't care if you're young or old, round or skinny or even smelly - well the last one may be an issue. But there is great material and people all around us – we just have to CONNECT!
9. Fill in the blank: I can't make it through the day without ______________.
…my high blood pressure medicine. Seriously, I'm not kidding, but even if I did not take my medicine – the medicine that gears me up more than Viagra is working in any form of broadcasting. I LOVE WHAT I DO! It is my passion, it is in my blood and it is my life.