10 Questions with ... Matt Cooper
September 26, 2011
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
Started doing college radio in the Baltimore area, then worked at a small AM in the suburbs. Moved to the Outer Banks in late '93 and started weekends at WVOD. Worked my way up through the ranks. Moved to Charleston, South Carolina in 2005 to work for Clear Channel. Returned to the Outer Banks and WVOD in 2007.
1. How did you become interested in radio?
I grew up outside of Baltimore and got to hear some great stations like 98 Rock and WHFS during their heyday. I could also pick up some of the big signals from Philly, like WYSP and WMMR, and even hear DC101 on occasion. I was always fascinated by the ability of the good jocks to entertain one on one.
2. How would you describe the music on the station?
Fairly eclectic but still accessible.
3. You are in a unique market situation - tell us a bit about that.
We're a big tourist destination, so our summertime population hits around 400,000, but we've only got around 120,000 full-time residents in our listening area. We have a lot of local radio signals as well as several that can be heard from the Hampton Roads, VA market.
4. What are some of your biggest challenges as an independent station?
We became part of Max Radio about a year ago. Prior to that we were a stand-alone group of four stations and we were running on a shoestring. When Max Media took over, they fixed all of our technical problems. We now have a few more resources, which is nice. We recently added a dedicated news person, and I've got all air shifts covered again.
5. Tell us about the new person you are grooming at the station.
We have a twenty-something night guy who's been with us for a little over a year. Christian's entertaining, smart and hard-working. He also pushes the envelope just a bit, which I think is important to keep the station fresh.
6. Do you treat your nights differently than during the day?
Yes, we rock a little harder.
7. What do you like best about working at a Triple A station?
The variety of music, and the quality and uniqueness of the broadcasters working in this format.
8. What is your typical day like?
I do the morning show live 6-10a, and then work on music logs, production, etc. Sometimes we have an afternoon or evening promotion. Throw in a meeting or two a week, returning phone calls and e-mails, scheduling and training staff, and it's a pretty full schedule.
9. What is the one truth that has held constant throughout your career?
10. If you wanted to completely change careers today, what would you do?
Probably be a videographer, or sound tech.
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time away from work?
Hanging out with my wife and kids, going to the beach, sailing and surfing.
Last non-industry job:
Customer service at the cable company
First record ever purchased:
The first Cars album
Def Leppard, Krokus and Gary Moore
Favorite band of all-time: