10 Questions with ... Rudy Pavich
August 6, 2013
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
Most of my 14 years in radio were spent between KXXR (93X) in Minneapolis and WRQT (95.7 The Rock) in La Crosse, WI, with pit stops at KXLP, WGIR, KTCZ and with the best looking staff in the business at KQRA. Currently, I'm giving guitar lessons, playing shows around the Twin Cities and selling couches.
1) How are you occupying your time, besides looking for a job?
Idol hands are the Devil's playground so when it comes to us free-thinking atheist types, I suppose we just work, work, work to keep our minds from dealing with us. The second I stop working is the second I have to start dealing with me and that, my friends, no one wants to hear about. I have three dads. 3 EFFIN' DADS! No wonder I constantly write, rehearse and practice music, build bird houses, take care of my lawn, retool my websites or continually add projects to the heap already there. Once the physical work ends, the psychological breakdown begins. I'd scrub every crevice of my weed trimmer before I'd talk about how my sister and I would run up the stairs when step-dad #1 came home from work. Also, I've taken up gardening.
2) What's the longest stretch you've had on the beach?
I suppose I'll let you know if/when it ends....
3) What has been your best resource for finding out about job openings?
John, Paul, Ringo and George once sang how they could only get by with help from their friends ... and it still holds true to this day. Nadine Light, Scottie Davis, Kristen Bergman, Shadow, Randy Hawk, Ryan Giles, Ben Holson and the countless others who have offered me work or put a good word in for me elsewhere. I truly am blessed to have these people near me.
4) Are you finding salaries/benefits lower than you ever thought, about the same, or have you seen some pleasant surprises?
Unfortunately, most of us look down our pointy noses at the folks who work in retail, service industries or the like, but I am floored to see the people who bust their humps in these fields make a decent, if not incredibly lucrative, amount of money. If you want to connect with your listener, go find a part-time job for a month at H&M or a car wash. I bet your outlook on those who truly keep the community afloat will change dramatically!
5) Are you spending as much time listening to radio as you used to?
If a 22-year-old pitcher one day twists his elbow a fraction of a millimeter to the right or left, blows a tendon in his throwing hand and his career is over, it might not be healthy for him to go back to the field everyday to watch his friends move up the ranks. He'll never fully focus his energies on the next phase of his career. The sooner he comes to that understanding, the closer he gets to his next goal. With that being said, my tastes in lifestyle and music have changed dramatically over the years so I keep one station and a cavalcade of podcasts in earshot at most times. Plus, Amazon's $5 download is a great way to find new music!
6) What has been your biggest career accomplishment?
Nothing is sweeter than realizing you've hit the target, got the girl, won the race, etc., so when Wade Linder walked into the studio to ask if I wanted the afternoon gig on 93X, the power of 10 Whos' plus 2 is what it took to hold back the tears. Carefully waiting until Wade walked out the door, I then lied on the floor of the studio and cried harder than I ever had. eight years of shitty apartments, overnight shifts, crazy girlfriends, girlfriends I really loved but had to leave because of a new job in another city, all the arguments with my family about making no money and maybe it was time to go back to school finally had validation. I knew when I was 19 years old that one day I would have the most coveted spot in Rock radio and now, at 27, with a baby on the way, the vision of being the afternoon drive host at the station I held on a golden platter had finally come to fruition. It's been almost six years, but I still thank Wade everyday for that moment. It played out exactly the way it always had in my mind. Whenever those phrases like "I can't" or "it won't" creep up, I think of that day, hoist my pencil/guitar/keyboard and get my ass back to work.
7) Is there anything specific that you regret doing while you were still working?
I'm sure we've all heard this, or had the misfortune of getting trapped into this rut, but letting my passion fade without realizing it still gets to me. The focus from my show had fizzled and found itself running full steam ahead at "what is the next step." Sure, the things I set out to do, like acting, music and singing are all starting to pay off and I am seeing the rewards from the hard work I put into them, but I had forgotten to polish up the vehicle that got me there in the first place. I was coming in later and prepping less all the while working twice as hard at these new endeavors. Maybe, if I had managed my time a little better and didn't take this amazing job for granted, I'd still be working in radio.
8) If you were offered a similar position to what you were doing for considerably less money, would you seriously consider taking the job just to stay in the biz?
When I hear about recessions and 401k's going belly up, or how a quarter is now a nickel, I honestly ask, "What's new?" Myself, my neighbors, my friends, we have all been living paycheck to paycheck so if it came down to sharing stories, thoughts and helping to form new or solidify already well crafted points-of-view or deal with mallrats scuffing the chaise lounger ... yeah. I'd go back to radio.
9) Having been through all you have dealt with in this biz, what advice would you give people trying to break in?
The incredible Wisconsin radio legend, Dick Record, will talk to sales managers in the same tones as part-timers. I now work for one of my old interns. She was short-handed at work and I was looking to get back to the force. You never know when you're going to need someone to double back into your life so try to not burn bridges. Trust me, it doesn't work with everyone, but at least make an effort.
10) Where do you see yourself in five years? Ten years?
Owning my own guitar studio, giving lessons, and for a few weeks out of the year playing my originals on the road.
Any books you can recommend to people who need something inspirational to read?
"Thank You For Firing Me." I cannot remember the two ladies who wrote the book's names, but a ton of great resources. Plus, our narcissisms are thrown back in our faces in such a humorous way it numbs the sting of having to realize we are not the only people on the planet. Others, and most likely a lot of others, have it waaaaaaay worse than we do.