10 Questions with ... JB King
July 25, 2006
NAME:JB KingPOSITION:Afternoon Drive, APD/MDSTATION:98.5 KLUCMARKET:Las Vegas, NVCOMPANY:CBS RadioBORN:11/27, San Francisco, CARAISED:Oakland, CA
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
I started with a college internship at KSFM in SACRAMENTO in 1992. I went from production intern all the way to fulltime on-air, assistant MD/Mixshow coordinator. With only a brief stop (two hours) at KDVS, UC Davis' bullshit college radio. I spent my first six years in radio at KSFM with some of the best talent in the business: CHUCK FIELD, EBRO, RICK THOMAS, ALEXA SMITH, JERRY CLIFTON, DR. DAVE FERGUSON and JOHN E. KAGE, just to name a few. In April of 1998, I moved to Vegas to take over afternoon drive, then took over MD, next APD/MD, and now, my newly self-appointed title of Director of A&R.
1. What do you remember most about your first airshift?
It was lousy....awful. I was scared, nervous, kept forgetting how to run the board, talking way too fast. But, I had great teachers who were patient and worked with me. (i.e.- I was screamed at every day and even had a tape thrown at me in an air-check meeting.....it was great). I try and remember those days, when I air-check our guys now. Everyone had a starting place and needs to be taught.
2. What got you interested in Radio?
I've always loved listening to the radio. Growing up in the Bay Area, it was all about KMEL, back in the Hosh/Naftaly days. Many stations have come close, but I still think that was one of the greatest of all time. But it wasn't until college that I realized I wanted to be on the air and make radio my career. This is actually a funny story. My freshman year at U.C. Davis, my neighbor got an internship at KSFM in Sacramento and started dating one of the jocks/mixshow coordinator.....Ricky Leigh. (no...she wasn't retarded....sorry Rick, too easy). Anyway, I needed an internship, she gave me some numbers to call, got an internship, part-time, fulltime, etc. To this day, my time in Sacramento, was the greatest. I got to learn and work with some very talented people: Chuck Field (the tape thrower), Alexa Smith(she actually interviewed me for my internship), Ebro (who was in high-school and doing call-out research/interning at night), Dave Ferguson, Rick Thomas, Davey D, Trejo, John E. Kage.... Some really talented people have graced the hallways of 1750 Howe Ave.
3. What's the biggest change you've seen in LAS VEGAS?
Easy, the population growth is insane. Since I've been here (8 yrs), we've grown 10 market sizes. We still average, 5000-6000 a month moving to Vegas. Approximately, 60,000-70,000 per year, an extra 500,000+, since I've been here. The area where I live now was desert, when I moved to LV.
4. What's the biggest change you've seen in LAS VEGAS radio?
The massive cume growth has led to more stations, and competition.....everyone's piece of the pie is smaller. When I moved here the top 3 stations in the market were all trying to break a 10 share, now the top three are trying to break a 6 share.
5. You have worked with your PD CAT THOMAS for a long time. What about CAT will surprise even those that are acquainted with CAT?
Everyone knows Cats one of the brightest guys in the biz. Bleeds Scarlet & Grey (GO BUCKS). A great husband, father, softball player, but.... did you know that Cat is kind of a gadget guy....not quite a gadget geek, but close. AND....he probably hasn't parked his car in his 3 car garage since he moved into his house 5 years ago, too much crap....he blames his wife. Also....he has 4 refrigerators at his house. Actually, 3 and a deep freeze. But in his defense, one is full of beer.
6. Would you be interested in teaching a broadcast course at a local high school or JC?
Either would be great, but probably a JC would be more fun. I think this is another way that we can give back. Very few schools that I've been involved with have adequate programs to teach REAL radio skills.
7. What's the biggest strength you would bring to a large or major market PD gig?
I'm a winner. No one can top my work ethic and my desire to win. Just ask the 7 competitors we've knocked out here in Vegas. Working on number 8 right now.
8. You recently brought aboard a new morning zoo-member in Lauren Michaels but KLUC has had very little turnover. What's the key to stability on the staff?
A great PD. Cat, truly is one of the best. A great GM. Marty Basch, our VP/GM, understands the balance between programming and sales. But, also, a great city and community. Some might not believe it, but Las Vegas is a really great city to live in. We have a very supportive community, affordable living, low unemployment, nice weather, and I don't have to leave to move to a bigger market. But honestly, the environment that we've created here at KLUC, attracts great/talent people, who want to kick-ass everyday. Also, the lifestyle of the city rivals anywhere in the world.
9. You have a gift certificate for 5 lap dances at a local club. You can't keep them, you have to give them to a member of the record promotion community. Who would you give them to?
My mentor, my friend, my brother.....THE CHUCKER!!!!!! ......If Jammin' Chuck ever goes back behind the mic, I'll be first in line to pull his carts. (note: if you don't know what a cart is...learn your history). But I would probably spread the wealth. Since I know some people (i.e.- the manager at the Spearmint Rhino), I would treat as many people as possible.
10. If LAS VEGAS got a major professional sports team, what would you prefer and could/would the city support a team?
I'd love a baseball team, but we are probably at least 5 years away from that. We have to build a stadium like the B-O-B in Phoenix first. Football is further away than that. The first team we'll probably get is a professional basketball team. We'll see how the NBA All-Star game goes next year. The biggest thing holding us back right now is the LAME excuse about gambling. Did you know that over 70% of sports gambling is done outside of the state of Nevada?
Hypothetical situation...You're going to have to spend 8 weeks on a deserted tropical island. You get to pick a crew of six to go with you. One must be a man and two must be in the music business. Name your six crew members.
That's tough.....probably the Chucker, we always have a great time when we hang out........Cat, he's usually the voice of reason. Plus, he's the gadget guy and would probably figure out how to purify water, build a coconut radio, etc.......Jessica Alba, 8 weeks of seeing her in a bikini, not bad......the Wildman, if you know him you know he's the man. Plus, he lives on Maui and knows that island culture........Eva Mendes or any other hot female celeb (see above- Alba:Bikini).... And probably..... my dad, he's one of the coolest people I know.