10 Questions with ... Angi Taylor
November 15, 2011
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
- KDWB Minneapolis: Morning host, "Dave Ryan in the Morning" (1997-2002)
- Q102 Philly: Morning host "Chio in the Morning" (2002-2004)
- Q102 Philly (part 2): Morning host "The Booker Show" (2007-2008)
- KISS FM, Chicago: Morning host "DreX in the Morning" (2008-2010)
- Morning host "Brotha Fred's Neighborhood" (2011-present)
1) So, how's married life?
About a hundred times cooler than I thought it would be! I was always the girl who thought married life was something that would be stifling and unexciting. I think I hit the jackpot with my husband, Jason, and I honestly couldn't be happier or having more fun. It had to be HIM or it probably wouldn't have been anyone.
2) Being married to someone who's also in this crazy business must present some interesting relationship dynamics. Care to share?
I think the fact that we both love this business is helpful. It's a good dynamic because we don't do exactly the same thing, but we have an understanding of each other's life and kind of run in the same social and business circles. There's no competition, but a really cool support system that comes from knowing what the other deals with. We have separate yet similar lives, and it's the key. If he was the morning guy across the street or I worked at a competing label, we might be throwing dishes at each other at home...
3) What led you to a career in radio?
I was lucky enough to be around AMAZING people very early on. The first person who got me interested in radio was Tone E. Fly, since I started as his intern at KDWB. I learned from the best in him, Rob Morris (who I begged to hire me on staff every day), and Dave Ryan who plucked me out of part-time to make me his co-host. I really knew NOTHING about morning radio and learned quickly what it was (and more importantly, was NOT) all about. I would not be in radio if not for those three very important people. I made tons of mistakes since I was so young when I started, and was so blessed to work with people like Chio, Booker, and now the awesome Brotha Fred, who've all taught me so much along the way.
4) What makes your station unique? How would you compare it to other stations you've worked at?
Our new morning show with Brotha Fred and David L. is the best thing I've ever been a part of. Fred is the hardest working person I've ever met, and lives for this show. He's young, smart, funny and a legend in training. David is hilarious with his perspective and makes me laugh every day. My superiors -- Rick Vaughn, Tony Coles, and Earl Jones --are the most dedicated team I've ever worked for, and along with the rest of the staff here, I feel like what we have going at KISS is unstoppable. Every single person here is kicking and scratching to win. Because this market is so full of talent it's a daily dogfight ... but that's what makes it exciting, right? I have to pinch myself sometimes, because this has always been the dream scenario in my mind.
5) Are you wearing more "hats" than you have in the past?
Absolutely! I joked with a co-worker recently that I could add "blogger" and "social media expert" to my job description. Radio isn't just something we put out of the speakers anymore. It also involves being a presence anywhere our listener might lurk. It's maintaining Facebook, Twitter, and station websites ... Plugging iHeartRadio, podcasts, and making sure I have a decent Klout score. (It's 62.) This all needs daily maintenance, and it all needs to remain topical, interesting and entertaining. The job really never stops, but when it's your lifestyle it tends to feel less like "work." I love it!
6) What is your favorite part of the job?
Laughing all day EVERY single day. I can't think of another job where that would be the norm.
7) What was your favorite station to listen to when you were a kid?
KDWB and WLOL in Minneapolis. Growing up on KDWB and eventually launching my career there was the biggest blessing and most surreal experience.
8) Do you have a favorite hobby outside of radio?
I'm a runner and triathlete when I'm not working or spending time with my family. I really wish I would've been more devoted to it when I was younger, because I would've tried to go pro in triathlon. Now I have to settle for it being a hobby since I'm getting smoked out there by kids. It's also very therapeutic. My husband and I joke that running has become our Prozac.
9) What music do you listen to when you're not working?
Rap and hip-hip is my everything ... soul music ... and whatever song my daughter likes from iCarly or VicTORIous that particular week. ;)
10) What is the one truth that has held constant throughout your career?
That you really have to put ALL of your life out there. I've pissed off some friends, boyfriends, and family members along the way with some of the things I've aired out on the show, but I feel like it's the best way to connect with my listeners. I've cried about break-ups, postpartum depression and a shitty childhood, but those are the things that have made people walk up and say, "I felt like you were talking about my life..." I believe it's the human connection that separates you from the other people doing X-Factor recaps.
For someone vacationing in your market, what one thing would you say they "must see"?
I'm totally biased, but I think Chicago is the greatest city on earth. I always point visitors to the achitectural boat tour that travels down the Chicago River. It's so interesting to learn the history of the buildings and the city, plus the views are stunning. Added bonus: cocktails on a boat!