10 Questions with ... Matt Spatz
April 30, 2013
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
- WLVQ/Columbus: '92 - '94
- WONE/Akron: '94 - '97
- WRQK/Canton: '97 - '03
- WWIZ/Youngstown: '03 - '06
- WROV/Roanoke: '06 - '07
- WNCD & WAKZ/Youngstown: '07 - '11
- WDJQ/Canton: '12 - '13
- WYFM & WWIZ/Youngstown: Present
1)What was your first job in radio? Early influences?
I got my feet wet at my college station - WOBN at Otterbein University - and was fortunate enough to land a weekend/swing gig at WLVQ at the end of my sophomore year in college. At the time I knew it was a great opportunity, but looking back now, I really had no idea just how phenomenal an opportunity it really was. I know I wouldn't be in the business today without that experience. My early influence was definitely Jim Chenot, who did afternoons and then later mornings at WONE. I listened to him while I was in high school, long before I ever knew I'd eventually pursue a career in radio. I'm definitely not one of those "I always knew radio is what I wanted to do"... but I'm sure glad radio found me!
2) What led you to a career in radio? Was there a defining moment that made you realize "this is it"?
The first time I went on the air at my college station! Oh, the nerves, but what a rush.
3) I understand this is your second tour of duty as PD at WWIZ (Rock 104). What brought you back and what makes this station so unique?
I know there are going to be people all over the country who disagree with me, but you really would be hard-pressed to find a better rock market than Youngstown. Three rockers in the market, plus because of the overlap from Cleveland, Akron, Canton and Pittsburgh, we have a dozen great Rock stations. It makes it very competitive, but a ton of fun. Rock 104 is unique because it's the one of those dozen rock signals that really lives the new music.
4) You have the dual role as PD of both Rock 104 and Classic Rock WYFM (Y-103) as well as Morning Show host on Y-103 ... how do you balance your time so all roles are effective?
I'm still trying to figure it out. Any and all suggestions are welcome. I really just have to take a day-by-day approach, and deal with whatever issue is most important RIGHT NOW.
5) Since you are programming an Active and Classic Rock station, how much library material if any do you share between the two stations?
A little, but not much. Again, because of the competition in the market, we are able to keep Y-103 and Rock 104 pretty far apart on the spectrum.
6) What's your take on current Active Rock music? Is it as good as six months or a year ago, better, or about the same?
It's pretty good right now. Active Rock falls into the trap of getting too heavy all at once, or too aAlternative all at once - much like what happens at Top 40 when the current trend becomes too rhythmic or too pop. I think there's a nice mix right now.
7) Do you do any music research for either of your Rock stations and if so, what kind of research? How much music research input do you get from other Cumulus stations?
As was the case when I worked for Cumulus previously, Val Garris continues to provide a great forum for the rock PDs to share "success stories" of records.
8) How much do both stations use their website and social media like Facebook and Twitter to help enhance and have an interactive experience with their listeners?
Rock 104 is the most-followed station on Facebook in the market. Like the listeners of the station, Rock 104 communicates a tremendous amount of information through social media. The Y-103 audience is slowly becoming more Facebook-savvy. And a big part of it is, we're making a better effort of communicating on Facebook, rather than just assuming "our listeners don't use Facebook," as some older demo stations probably assume.
9) What are your three favorite artists or songs of this year?
Too soon to know!
10) I know you are big Cleveland sports fan ... so which local team will make their playoffs first? Cavs, Indians or Browns?
None. Cleveland teams don't make the playoffs. It takes more character to root for a team that never wins. I am full of character.
What do you like to do to relax and have fun when you aren't wearing all your radio hats?
Anything with the kids. Oh, you said, "relax"?
You're stuck on a deserted island and you only have five CDs with you. What are they?
- AC/DC "Back in Black"
- Rush "Roll the Bones"
- Rolling Stones "Some Girls"
- Seether "Karma and Effect"
- Tom Petty "Full Moon Fever"