10 Questions with ... Brock Havens
October 22, 2013
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
I interned at WLUP from the summer of 2005 till fall of 2006. Started with MWF/Madison in 2007 and stayed there till 2009. Started with MWF/Springfield, MO in 2010.
1) What was your first job in radio? Early influences?
Technically, my first job in radio was as an intern for WLUP in Chicago. However, my first paying job in radio was with Mid-West Family Broadcasting in Madison, WI doing the Farm Report. I was hired by the Fabulous Farm Babe Pam Jahnke as her Assistant Farm Director. You wanna talk about baptism by fire! I think everyone in radio at some point and time should have to do farm broadcasting, cause that right there, is a true test of your mettle. It was one of the best experiences of my life, though, and I owe so much to Pam. Shortly after is when I started working for WJJO.
2) What led you to a career in radio? Was there a defining moment that made you realize "this is it"?
It actually just happened by accident. I went to college to play football and didn't have a clue on what I wanted to do. Then during a tour of the campus they took me by the college's radio station and I thought "huh, that might be fun." And there was a defining moment; it was the first time I had someone tell me they really enjoyed my show. I was just an 18-year-old kid screwing around on a mic, but the realization that I connected with someone, that someone liked what I was doing really resonated with me. I've been fortunate enough in my career to have some amazing people take a chance on me and have helped me get to where I am today.
3) How long have you been at KQRA (Q 102.1) and what makes this station so unique?
I have been with Q102 for almost four years. Crazy it's been that long already! I think we are unique in the fact that we are a very "go by your gut" station. We aren't cookie cutter like a lot of them out there. We make our own rules. We're bad ass, man.
4) You have the dual role as MD and afternoon host ... how do you balance your time so both roles are effective?
Constant micro-management from Shadow ... In all seriousness, though, it's tough at times, but I just try and keep them separate. Like, when I'm on-air, I'm on-air. I focus on my show and I don't take music calls.
5) Describe your weekly music meeting with PD Shadow ... a) what is the process when you listen to new music? b) Approximately how important by percentage is gut, research, sales, video play, and chart position when determining the status of a record?
What I like about our music meetings is that we actually listen to music. Shadow and I will sit and check out tracks together. We are on the same page when it comes to Q's music, and that's key. Like I mentioned, we are a gut station. Of course we look at the charts, but we don't live and die by them. Shadow's been here 10 years, I've been here almost four ... we know our listeners and we know what works. All in all, we have a perfect balance of how and why we select our music.
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?
Man, that's a tough one. I think Active Rock is in a good place. What's crazy is you have bands like Pearl Jam, STP, and Alice In Chains coming out with new stuff. I love that, don't get me wrong, but I do also think it makes it harder on some of these up-and-coming bands. That's the only part that sucks sometimes. I love playing the staple bands (AIC, STP, PJ, etc.) but there are so many great new bands out there that are taking a back seat right now. To keep rock alive and kicking, we have to stay fresh, ya know? I'm rambling; to get to my point, I think Active Rock gets better every day and I'm excited to see it grow.
7) What are your three favorite artists or songs of this year and why?
In This Moment is AMAZING. Their latest album is stellar start to finish and I love the fact that a heavy sounding band is getting air time.
Aranda is and always will be one of my favorites. Their new stuff is awesome.
And the last one is a three-way tie between Leogun, Devour the Day, and Killswitch Engage. All unbelievably killer! I've been listening to those three bands nonstop.
8) How much does KQRA use social media (Facebook and Twitter) to interact with its listeners? Give us an example of a social media campaign that worked.
A lot. We get on there as much as possible. Whether it's responding back to a question someone might have or posting something funny or just keeping our listeners up to date on when and where we're going to be. The one that comes to mind that was a favorite of mine was "Brock's Crack-O-Lantern" contest. We had people paint their ass or bust like a jack-o-lantern and post it for people to vote on. Yup :)
9) Springfield is close to Branson, MO. Care to fill us in on any cool but cheesy acts you've had the pleasure of seeing perform in that town?
I hate to admit it, but I haven't been to any of the main shows down there. I'll probably end up going to the Dixie Stampede at some point and time. One show I did go to that came through was Three Dog Night. They are one of my all-time favorites and my wife got us tickets. It was one of the best shows I've ever been to.
10) Finally, how difficult is it being a Green Bay Packers fan in Missouri?
Honestly, not that difficult. Being a Brewers fan, however, that's not fun.
What do you like to do for fun and relaxation when you're NOT in "radio" mode?
Spending time with my beautiful wife tops the list for sure. I like anything outdoors like going to the lake, camping with family, and barbecuing. I try and play my guitar when I have some free time. My wife and I go to the movies a lot. And even though it's still related, I go to a least one show a week in my free time.
You're stuck on a deserted island and you only have five CDs with you. What are they?
- AC/DC - Let There Be Rock (really any cd by them cause they are the best ever)
- Tom Petty - Damn The Torpedoes
- Thin Lizzy - Jailbreak
- Elvis Presley - Aloha From Hawaii
- Creedence Clearwater Revival - Chronicle