10 Questions with ... Greg Cypin
June 24, 2014
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
I started out as a weekend jock at KSFM/Sacramento. First shift was 3-6a on a Sunday morning and I couldn't have been more excited about it. From there, I moved on to Alternative Howard 93.7 (KHWD), and yes, the station was named after Howard Stern. I loved that place but once Stern was gone, so was the station. After graduating from college, I worked for four years at KNX-A/Los Angeles. However, when I decided I wanted to work in music radio again, I took a job as a weekender at AC KATY (101.3 The Mix) in the Riverside-San Bernardino market. After making the long drive from L.A. to the Inland Empire every weekend for about six months, they eventually promoted me to afternoons. Now I'm handling the afternoon-drive slot at Top 40 KHTH (Hot 101.7)/Santa Rosa and loving every minute. In addition to my show, I also schedule music and work in our production department. My days are almost always busy, but so rewarding and I can't imagine doing anything else.
1) How would you describe your first radio gig?
My first gig was a great place to learn. At the time we were dominating the Sacramento market so it was the perfect place to learn how a radio station truly wins.
2) What led you to a career in radio?
I've always been interested in being a DJ. I used to play DJ in my room as a kid (I mean, who didn't, right?). I guess it all really started when my Dad arranged a tour for me at Y92 in Sacramento. The midday jock put me on the air during one of her breaks and from that day forward, HOOKED!
3) Are you wearing more "hats" than you have in the past?
I would definitely say so. Especially because it's not just the work I do at the station. With social media now being such a big part of the industry, it really has turned radio into a 24/7 job more than ever. Even on my weekends and days off, I'm constantly looking for funny or interesting photos, status updates, or new stories I can post to stay connected with our listeners.
4) What are you doing social media-wise?
I'm a social media addict anyway, so the fact that it's now such a big part of my job is a perfect fit. I have my own personal DJ social media accounts and I post many of the items on our station's pages. I'm always promoting our contests, posting breaking news stories, and trying to post things that will make our listeners laugh or get involved in some kind of way. I'm also constantly checking on my posts from that day, even when my work day is done.
5) What is your favorite part of the job?
I love getting on the air and interacting with our listeners every day. When you meet someone on the street and they tell you how much they love what you do, it's tough to describe how great that feels. I also LOVE working with music. I always have and it doesn't have to be my favorite type of music to enjoy the work either.
6) What's the coolest promotion you've EVER been involved with?
I would have to say our Hot Holiday shopping sprees that we gave away in December. Basically they were coupons that were good for any store at one of the malls in Santa Rosa. I had a few winners who had kids and had no idea how they were gonna buy presents for them this year. Felt great being able to help them out.
7) Who is your favorite air personality not on your staff and why do you like them?
There are so many people in this business that I think are great at what they do. A few of them include Booker at KAMP in LA, Jesse Lozano at KIIS in LA, Letty B at KMVQ in San Francisco, and Trey Morgan at KYSR in LA, although I listened to him a lot when he was at Z100. I mostly like how REAL they sound. I always feel like I'm listening to a person and not just another cookie cutter DJ. And of course. Kevin & Bean, just cuz they always crack me up.
8) What music do you listen to when you're not working?
Probably like most people in this business my musical tastes are all over the place. On a long car ride with me you could hear anything from Tupac to Sinatra to Rage Against the Machine to Erykah Badu to The Beatles to Miles Davis to Johnny Cash ... and the list goes on.
9) What is it about our industry that keeps you wanting to do it for a living?
I've had a bunch of jobs that when you finally get off work you have that "thank God that's over" feeling. I never have that now. I mean, I have my good and bad days like anyone else, but the worst day in radio is still better than the best day at a lot of other jobs.
10) What advice you would give people new to the business?
When it comes to being on air, master the basics first and learn how to properly put together an aircheck. There are so many people out there who are incredibly talented but aren't getting anywhere because their checks don't show anything that PDs are actually looking for.
What's the biggest gaffe you've made on air?
One time I was reading a sponsorship for a car dealership and the line was "tired of big city dealerships?" But instead of "city" I said a certain word that means breasts that rhymes with city ... I'll let you figure out what I really said, LOL.