10 Questions with ... Maggie Meadows
February 4, 2014
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
- WCRZ-FM, Promotions Director/On-Air 1999 - 2004
- WQUS-FM Promotions Director/On-Air 2004- 2009
- WWBN-FM Music Director/On-Air 2009 - Present
1. What was your first job in radio? Early influences?
My first job in radio was as the Promotions Dir. for WCRZ, CARS 108. That was 14 years ago. I still work in the same building, but just for WWBN now. I was so green, but the PD at the time J. Patrick believed in me. Thank you J. Everything he promised me would happen came true.
2. What led you to a career in radio? Was there a defining moment that made you realize "this is it"?
Truthfully, there was not one defining moment. I guess it was always in the back of my mind. I thought it would be fun because I have always loved music. I cannot play an instrument or sing - so radio was the closest thing to it for me. My mother wanted me to be a nurse, BUT she was really happy I wasn't when we were sitting side stage at a Kid Rock show!
3. How long have you been at WWBN (Banana 101.5) and what is the origin of the Banana handle?
I have worked at WWBN for five years. When Tony LaBrie took over the station he asked if I was interested in working for him and my response was 'F*** Yes!' I have a lot of respect for Tony. He is a great mentor and friend. As far as the origin of being called 'Banana' it all points back to the call letters WWBN. I honestly do not think of it as an actual banana. Our logo IS NOT a banana. It's just a name to us. However, people and bands that come through town don't forget us with a name like this. So, that is a bonus.
4. You have the dual role as MD and afternoon host ... how do you balance your time so both roles are effective?
There is no real method to my madness day-to-day. Every day in this business can be different. Aside from my normal interactive duties, scheduling music, phone calls and being on the air, Tony and I work close with the promotions department to create fun and innovative promotions. It is not uncommon for me to be writing sweepers at night when I get home. I love the creativity! Basically I am thinking about work 24/7 - luckily, what I do is fun. Being on-air is definitely the highlight of my day to day. There is no better feeling for me than building that relationship with the listener. I still get excited when people say they love listening. How could that ever get old? Without 'them' there is no 'us'.
Regardless if it is a station event or me out in my personal time, I really get to know our listeners. Banana listeners have invited me to weddings, birthday parties and even baby showers - and I go! That is something special about the Banana crew.
5. Describe your weekly music meeting with PD Tony Labrie?... 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?
As far as music goes, I think everyone in this business knows what a great ear Tony LaBrie has. I have learned so much from Tony. Of course, we look at charts but we both know what works well in our market.
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?
You know what they say about opinions. :) I am just excited when I hear something that sounds different. I am really looking forward to hearing what Sal Costa is doing with "Smashing Satellites." I love a band that can just bring it in terms of being great musicians and songwriters. Royal Bliss is one of those bands for me. I hope to hear and see some super stars emerge in 2014.
7. What are your three favorite Rock artists or songs of this past year and why?
In no particular order, of course ... I LOVE Devour the Day! Blake and Joey blew me away with "Time and Pressure." I love the CD from beginning to end. We were one of the first supporters of the new project and I can't say enough good things about this band!
Pop Evil had an awesome 2013. The PE guys nailed it with "Onyx" with "Trenches" and "Deal With The Devil" - both going to #1. Well deserved. The songs were right on the money! On a side note, the band just played LaBrie's 40th birthday party at the Machine Shop. What a night! They killed it!
As far as songs go, I loved and still love "Tired" from Stone Sour. Corey Taylor is not human! How can one person be so talented? This guy is so good. I love him and love the band!
8. What was the most effective promotion the station ran in 2013 and why?
My favorite promotion we do annually is called 'The Ultimate Ticket'. One person (with guest of their choice) wins access to EVERY SHOW at the Machine Shop for one entire year. Talk about one hell of a prize. If you are not familiar with the Shop, Google it and get familiar! It is the best rock venue in the world!
9. How much does WWBN use social media like Facebook and Twitter to help enhance the Banana 101.5 experience with its listeners?
We rule when it comes to social media. Our website is constantly updated with news - covering local, national, rock news etc. Our sense of humor really shines on our website. Our Facebook followers are loyal and really interactive when it comes to commenting and sharing any information or stories we post. We share a lot about our personal lives on air and through social media. Small things like taking the time to wish listeners a personal happy birthday or a congrats for something really means a lot to them.
10. The city of Flint has been widely publicized as one of the cities hit hardest by the poor economy the last five plus years. How are things going there now and how has Banana 101.5 helped Flint cope with this economic downturn?
As far as Flint goes we have certainly heard the criticisms and jokes. Honestly, I love it here. We have made our fair share of jabs at Flint. I have written many sweepers in reference to this city - "Flint MI - Where you can buy area rugs and drugs on the same corner." that was one of my favorites! If you live here you get that joke. We can poke fun because we live here. Our listeners know it is all in fun. I love when listeners will post one of our sweepers on their Facebook page. We see that a lot of that. All kidding aside, there are a lot of great people here.
What do you like to do for fun and relaxation when you're not in "radio" mode?
Working here at the Banana is fun! I love going to see shows at the Machine Shop. I live on a lake so summer time for me is all about being on the water. I enjoy hanging out with people I work with. Tony LaBrie may be my boss, but he is one of my best friends.
We are a tight group here.
You're stuck on a deserted island and you only have five CDs with you. What are they?
Guns N' Roses, Appetite For Destruction. Any Royal Bliss, throw in some Shamans Harvest and I am a happy island girl!