10 Questions with ... Natalie
September 9, 2014
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
I started as a board op playing the Casey Kasem Top 40 countdown and graduated to on air at KSXY. I have been part of KSXY (in all of its various incarnations -- Top 40, Rhythmic, and Hot AC) since 1999. I've also voicetracked stations in Chico, CA, Spokane WA, and Destin FL, as well as imaging voice for various stations.
1) How would you describe your first radio gig?
My first is my current! So, I'd say that I'm pretty darn lucky to have been with the same company for 15 years. I have awesome managers and fantastic co-workers/friends.
2) What led you to a career in radio?
When I was young, I always thought I'd end up being a female sports announcer (that was unheard of then). I grew out of my tomboy phase and wanted to pursue entertainment news, but I would always cringe when I watched myself on camera. I thought I made silly faces. Then I realized, duh, radio. I can talk and no one has to see me. I can make all the funny faces I want now, but I'm not nearly as sensitive about on-camera performances as I was back then.
3) How would you describe the radio landscape in your market?
I think this is a great radio area. Even with the competition, we are all really cool with each other. Many of us have worked together previously, or we just vibe. Top 40 and contemporary radio are starting to dominate in the area. Since Top 40 has always been my love, I feel so proud. I've seen Top 40 go from being a format that had the stigma of being the teeny-bopper format, to being a truly viable, money-making, format in our area.
4) Are you wearing more "hats" than you have in the past?
I need a bigger closet for all these hats! We all work multiple jobs, but as technology progresses and new stations are added, my job with promotions evolves.
5) What is your favorite part of the job?
I love the fact that I can do what I love and I can wear jeans doing it! As for on-air, I really like making the connection with the listener. I've been here so long that some people have literally grown up listening to me. It's amazing that they still listen and remember things I said YEARS ago. As for promotions, I love working really hard on an event and seeing it come to fruition (plus, then I get to say "fruition"). And meeting the listeners in person is pretty awesome.
6) What is the most challenging part of the job?
Balancing work and family. I'm lucky to have a really amazing husband who "gets it" because he is in radio, too (he didn't even make me say that). I work a lot of hours and often some crazy weird times of the day. I just want to make sure I give my kids the attention they need and deserve too.
7) What artist would we be surprised to find on your iPod?
I'm going to elaborate on the ever-so-popular answer of "I listen to everything." I really do. My iPod has everything from musicals to Sublime to ghetto Hip-Hop and everything in between. Sometimes you just need to be mellow and sometimes you need to listen to Devin the Dude and Too Short.
8) If you could add one full-time position to your budget right now, what would it be?
Someone to manage social media and websites. Currently this falls under my job duties and I've got tons of love for both, but it could really be its own job.
9) Who is your favorite air personality not on your staff and why do you like them?
So, if I didn't mention my husband, I'd be sleeping in the living room ... so Danny Wright (the Danny Wright who is my husband ...just to clarify since there are many). He's got such a great voice. Also, Lauren Michaels from KLUC and Jason Cage from B96. Lauren is well loved by her listeners and it shows and Jason is creative and entertaining.
10) What advice you would give people new to the business?
I was always told to learn three things in this business and learn them well. I pass that advice along to all our interns because there aren't a lot of places where you can walk in and just be a jock anymore.
For someone vacationing in your market, what one thing would you say they "must see?"
Well, I'm in Sonoma County, so I'd say that they should for sure visit one of the many, many, many wineries. There is some amazing wine in Sonoma and Napa Counties.