10 Questions with ... Crash Young
January 7, 2014
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
Technically, my first radio gig was weekends on a tiny Classic Rock station called WRIC back in '95. First real gig was nights on WQCM/Hagerstown, MD. Next was a brief stint at WQXA/Harrisburg, PA, followed by an eight-year stretch at WRXL/Richmond, VA. After that, I landed at Metro Networks in Washington, DC as a traffic reporter.
1) How are you occupying your time, besides looking for a job?
I am working as the entertainment coordinator for a sports bar. I was also an actor before I started my radio career. This break has given me the opportunity to do a couple of plays, and be reminded that I have no talent for acting, which is why I went into radio.
2) What have you learned about yourself, others, or life in general in your downtime?
I've learned not to take anything for granted, ever.
3) Having been through all you have dealt with in this biz, what advice would you give people trying to break in?
Never give up, and stay grounded once you achieve success.
4) How will this experience change you when you get back to work?
I'm employed in one of the places I used to do remotes. Working a full shift, instead of chatting with listeners and handing out T-shirts for a couple of hours, while earning significantly less than your talent fee is a humbling experience. It's also been a wonderful experience. It's easy to become disconnected in this industry. After all, we hang out backstage at concerts, we don't have to wait in long lines to get into clubs, get to hear new music before anyone else, AND WE GET PAID FOR IT! C'mon! We get to live the dream. Anyway, my time off has allowed me to reconnect with life outside the industry, and discover my love for radio all over again. When I go back to work, I get to go with the same passion I had when starting my first job, only this time I will have over a decade of experience.
5) What do you miss most about music/radio? The least?
The listeners ... for both parts.
6) Some people get discouraged or enlightened with the business when they actually step out of it for a while. Tell us your observations from the outside.
I have been fortunate, because this is the first time in my career that I have been off the air. Just like any project, however, sometimes you need to step away from it and look at it from a new perspective. I have gotten to look at the industry from the point of view of the listeners. We tend to get wrapped up in the business side, and forget about the magic. Radio listeners are much more passionate than a television audience. You don't see fans from opposing TV stations stand off against each other outside a venue yelling colorful banter at each other. That's the magic of radio. Sometimes you need to step outside of it to see it.
7) Do you plan on sticking with radio?
Absolutely. I may branch out into other areas of media or entertainment, but radio is my first love and I will probably always do some form of it.
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?
None of us do this for money. We do it because we have low self-esteem and want attention.
9) Are you spending as much time listening to radio as you used to?
Oh yeah. I've always preferred radio over my iPod. We're social creatures, and music is just better when you know other people are listening with you.
10) What has been your biggest career accomplishment?
I don't know how much of an accomplishment it was, but my favorite moment was speaking at VCU homecoming a few years back. It's my alma mater, and it was a tremendous honor.
Any books you can recommend to people who need something inspirational to read?
Everyone in this biz needs to read The PD Chronicles.