6.10.2018

John Siuntres: radio broadcaster and podcasting pioneer

John Siuntres is a radio broadcaster (currently at WBBM Newsradio) and is one of the pioneers of podcasting...he started way back in 2005, when there weren't many podcasts at all (now there are lots of them), with his popular Word Balloon podcast. He talks about how he got into radio, covering boxing on Chet Coppock's show on WLUP The Loop; being part of the early staff when WSCR The Score started; writing about boxing for Boxing Illustrated; working on Dan McNeil and Terry Boers' afternoon show on The Score; working at Sporting News Radio; his very successful Word Balloon podcast; doing production including imaging for WSHE 100.3, and commercials for WDRV The Drive and The Mix WTMX at Hubbard; interviewing the boxing greats, why he loved boxing, and the quirks of the boxing biz; what he thinks of the radio biz; what the early days of The Score were like; his parody songs (sampled in the interview); how radio was the original social media and how social media has affected radio; why he started his podcast and what makes a successful podcast; getting on TV as a commentator on the Prophets of Science Fiction show; how his podcast became successful and which famous people he's talked to among his almost 800 interviews, and more.


Click the link below to play, or download it by right-clicking (on a PC) or holding down the CTRL key and clicking on it (for Mac).

http://radiogirl.us/audio/RG157.mp3

4.15.2018

Craig Dellimore: dignified reporter

Craig Dellimore has been the Political Editor, City Hall reporter, and host of At Issue on WBBM Newsradio for several years. He talks about getting started at WBBM around the time Harold Washington became Mayor, what City Hall was like when he started reporting in Chicago, what Harold Washington was like, diverse newsrooms, covering crime, racial issues, dealing with doubters, covering Springfield, issues in the suburbs, simplifying story lines, New York vs Chicago, working at WCBS in New York, the NYC Blackout and other stories he’s covered, why he came to Chicago, working at City Hall, politicians’ motivations, voting issues, maintaining professionalism, changes in culture, “the n word,” advice for being a good reporter and writer, doing TV on Chicago Tonight, and more.

Click the link below to play, or download it by right-clicking (on a PC) or holding down the CTRL key and clicking on it (for Mac).

http://radiogirl.us/audio/RG156.mp3

3.04.2018

Rey Diaz: decent sports radio guy

Rey Diaz has the dream job for a lot of guys (and some gals) working in sports radio as a content producer for 670 The Score’s (WSCR) morning and midday shows and as a studio producer for Bears Radio on WBBM. He talks about how he got into radio, WNTD, being Mexican, Polish, and Italian (he looks Puerto Rican); working for the Mancow show at Q101 and digitizing his carts (and deleting people from audio bits whom Mancow didn’t like); what Mancow was like, how much Mancow does during and after the show; working at WVON; getting robbed and beaten (and injured), interviewing for a job with a shut mouth; expressing himself on social media, working in sports media, how he went from WVON to WBBM, overcoming failure, how he started working for Bears radio, how he got to The Score, advice for getting into sports radio, and more.

Click the link below to play, or download it by right-clicking (on a PC) or holding down the CTRL key and clicking on it (for Mac).

http://radiogirl.us/audio/RG155.mp3

1.03.2018

Elliot Abrams: having weather pun fun

Meteorologist Elliot Abrams has made a very good life out of being nerdy. He is one of the co-founders of AccuWeather Radio, and does weather on WBBM Newsradio in Chicago, WADK Radio in Rhode Island, four stations in College Park, Pennsylvania, and elsewhere, in addition to doing lectures and lots of other things. He's a witty meteorologist who's also in the Broadcast Pioneers of Philadelphia's Hall of Fame and the National Meteorologist Hall of Fame. He talks about how he got into weather and radio, being a geek, the early days of weather broadcasting, the US weather bureau, the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia, doing weather on the Pennsylvania Public Television network, why meteorologist Wally Kinnan was an innovator, how weather broadcasting technology and media have changed, started forecasting at WARM Radio, Fahrenheit vs Celsius, having a sense of humor and creating puns, AccuWeather's patented Real Feel, how he creates a forecast, the difference between creating TV and radio broadcasts, how the meteorologist’s role and the industry have changed, how AccuWeather helps railroads, climate change, how he became VP of AccuWeather, being a township supervisor in his town, his blog, advice for getting into the weather business, the future of weather forecasts, how he stays current, how communication and media consumption used to be, the Farmer’s Almanac, Benjamin Franklin’s 300th birthday party, getting older, his lifestyle, social media, writing, and more.

Click the link below to play, or download it by right-clicking (on a PC) or holding down the CTRL key and clicking on it (for Mac).

http://radiogirl.us/audio/RG154.mp3

11.16.2017

Neil Fiorito: pump up the volume

Neil Fiorito does traffic on WBBM Newsradio and hosts "Neil’s News" for the Marriott in River North, and has done traffic at US99 WUSN, WIND Radio, for radio stations in Houston, Minnesota, St. Louis, and more. He started doing music radio at Triton College, and he talks about his varied career that includes working for his dad’s business, being on the air at Loyola’s WLUW Energy 88.7, Lite 103 in Rockton, WXLC in Waukegan, WRXQ and Star 96.7 in Crest Hill, and WCCQ 98.3. He also talks about why Dick Biondi is so wonderful, why he has a good personality for hotel work, why he likes acting, why he feels he’s living the dream, why he loves working at the hotel, what Mr. Marriott is like, why he likes doing radio, his theater experience, why he likes talking so much, his family, why he loves people, and more.

Click the link below to play, or download it by right-clicking (on a PC) or holding down the CTRL key and clicking on it (for Mac).

http://radiogirl.us/audio/RG153.mp3

9.24.2017

Bill Cochran: his own beat

Bill Cochran's voice is everywhere in Chicago, even on the west coast. After graduating from Northwestern, where he was on the air at WNUR, he was on the air and was the production director at WXRT for a decade, then joined Rick O'Dell at WNUA Smooth Jazz for over 20 years, went online with WLFM Smooth Jazz, then returned to WXRT to do more production. He talks about: why he left WXRT for his current production job at MeTV-FM, understanding what listeners want, his approach to talking about music in an entertaining way, telling stories when he performs with his band Great Moments in Vinyl, how he creates stories, how he chooses songs to perform, how he maintains a creative lifestyle in a non-creative world, his clog blog Every Clog Has Its Day, Oklahoma, and more.

Click the link below to play, or download it by right-clicking (on a PC) or holding down the CTRL key and clicking on it (for Mac).

http://radiogirl.us/audio/RG152.mp3

Get info about Great Moments in Vinyl's next show here.

The personal story that he mentions in this interview starts on his blog with Chapter 1 here, continues with Chapter 2 here, then continues with the rest of the chapters here (it’s not a continuous string of posts, thus the separate links).

8.30.2017

Josh Liss: sports dream achieved

Josh Liss is living the sports radio dream: he’s spent his entire career in sports, and has been the sports director and morning sports anchor on WBBM since 1998. He talks about how he preps, how he writes effective stories, how the internet has changed his reporting, how he deals with superfans, how he got into radio, playing sports and dealing with obstacles, working at WVVX Radio and WSCR The Score in the early years, advice for getting into sports media, how sports reporting is different from broadcasting sports opinion, what athletes might think about media attention, specializing in sports, working at WMAQ, how he got his fantastic WBBM gig, mistakes, his videos, and more.

Click the link below to play, or download it by right-clicking (on a PC) or holding down the CTRL key and clicking on it (for Mac).

http://radiogirl.us/audio/RG151.mp3

7.26.2017

Bob Kessler: radio and more

Bob Kessler does news at WGN Radio, and he does a lot of other things, including writing and producing Green Sense Radio and the Greensense Minute on WBBM, and doing news with Rivet Radio. He talks about why he likes doing broadcast radio and why he loves radio; being a musician and how he got interested in music, writing and arranging music, recording piano and performing harmonica; how he became ordained as a lay Buddhist teacher, what obstacles he has overcome, how he got into radio, internships with WKTI, WYMS, and WXRT; working on Jan Coleman’s show and Steve and Johnnie’s show at WGN; doing news on WGN while being the writer and executive producer for Ramsey Lewis’ show with Karen Williams on WNUA; how tech has changed broadcasting; his future plans, living an atypical life, and more.

Click the link below to play, or download it by right-clicking (on a PC) or holding down the CTRL key and clicking on it (for Mac).

http://radiogirl.us/audio/RG150.mp3

5.13.2017

J Niice and Showbiz Shelly: B96 mornings

A lot has happened since the last time I interviewed the stars of the B96 morning show: Julian Nieh left Chicago, and J Niice and Showbiz Shelly are the main hosts (with producer Gabe, who wasn't interviewed at this time).

First, Showbiz Shelly talks briefly (because she had to leave, just like last time) about her celebrity-filled life, including spilling a drink on Miranda Rae Mayo, the daily smackdown, yoga, relaxing, going out in Chicago, cohosting on WCIU’s morning show and appearance on Fox Chicago, cohosting the B96 morning show, highlights of her radio career, and advice for working in the media.

Then we find out a lot about J Niice, including his huge career as a child star on TV, including Sesame Street and the famous Honeycomb cereal commercial with Andre the Giant; his scary plane incident; his New York background; why he travels so much; being Jamaican and hanging out with the Jamaican community in Chicago and New York; being successful without the arrogance; how the B96 morning show is different after Julian left; what’s great about morning radio, even though it's super-early; interacting with the audience via social media; his hobbies such as soccer, scuba diving, volunteering at the Shedd Aquarium and Chill (a snowboarding charity for inner city kids), and snowboarding in his free time; his passion for late night television, especially Arsenio Hall; being on the TV shows Dish Nation and Empire; what he thinks of hip hop culture; what's great about Queens in New York; Jamaica; why he likes Chicago, and more.

Click the link below to play, or download it by right-clicking (on a PC) or holding down the CTRL key and clicking on it (for Mac).

http://radiogirl.us/audio/RG149.mp3

4.09.2017

Scott Miller: passion personified

Scott Miller has been working as a radio host and producer for years. He describes his beard pursuits: how he got into national and international beard competitions; how he got into radio doing the weather for Dick Biondi; working at NPR and another local station while at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale; getting fired, dealing with being out of work, and persevering without a job; doing mornings on Rock 105 WTAO; starting in Chicago at WCKG with Pete McMurray; why he loves radio so much; consistently contacting John Gehron; living in southern Illinois; reuniting with Pete McMurray at WGN and WDRV The Drive; being on the original team at Oprah's radio network, Oprah Winfrey's generosity; working for Gayle King's show and why she's so wonderful; working with Maya Angelou and why she's so great; why he left the excitement of Oprah's network for anchoring news at the failed FM News 101.1; predicting Bears games on Fox 32 TV; the difference between radio and TV; how music radio is more challenging than talk radio, and more.

Click the link below to play, or download it by right-clicking (on a PC) or holding down the CTRL key and clicking on it (for Mac).

http://radiogirl.us/audio/RG148.mp3

3.14.2017

Ryan Arnold: voice of the century

Ryan Arnold is on the air at WXRT every weeknight and on Saturdays. He talks about visiting the station while he was growing up; how he got on the air; how he ended up working overnights for the railroad (CSX); hosting New Noise at Nine; his favorite kinds of music; his live music regret; why he adores Joe Shanahan; working at KBXR in Columbia, Missouri, 105.5 Triple M (WMMM-FM) in Madison, Wisconsin (which he says is a great music town), and WDRV "The Drive"; how working in small markets helps; why he likes working in public relations; why he likes vinyl; how both digital and radio help bands’ exposure; his former podcast, if he thought he lost everything; why he likes being on the air; advice, and more.

Click the link below to play, or download it by right-clicking (on a PC) or holding down the CTRL key and clicking on it (for Mac).

http://radiogirl.us/audio/RG147.mp3

2.05.2017

Duffy Atkins: a duffinately good meteorologist

Duffy Atkins talks about her career as a meteorologist at CLTV (part of WGN-TV) in Chicago, working in sunny weather at an ABC station in Santa Barbara, why she loved working at KHQA-TV, which broadcast to the tri-states via Quincy in Illinois, Keokuk in Iowa, and Hannibal in Missouri; being a chief meteorologist in Reno Tahoe, how moving around is inevitable for TV, her twin sister, why she became a meteorologist, what classes are needed to be a meteorologist, changes in the media, why Tom Skilling is so great, communicating with viewers, pressure on TV women, how she works with the green screen, the importance of internships (she did hers at WLS-TV in Chicago and WESH-TV in Florida), how to stay motivated, funny on-air moments, how she prepares for forecasts, and more.

Click the link below to play, or download it by right-clicking (on a PC) or holding down the CTRL key and clicking on it (for Mac).

http://radiogirl.us/audio/RG146.mp3

1.04.2017

Bob Roberts: on the right track

Bob Roberts has been a reporter for several years at WBBM Newsradio, and he talks about covering stories, violence in Chicago (1974 was the worst year), being a reporter with City News Bureau; his passion for trains; how he got into radio and news; being on the air at WIUS Radio at Indiana University and even WNUR Radio (Northwestern); being a music DJ and doing news at WMET, WDHF, and WMAQ; reporting news on WYEN with his biggest exclusive ever: John Wayne Gacy; working in New York at 1010 WINS; the collapse of WMAQ and road to WBBM; being a “reporter not repeater”; how he quickly puts together news stories and how he ensures accuracy; Stew Cohen's book about WYEN, where Bob was "Frank Rhodes", working at the Associated Press, and more. Bob also had a cameo in a video I made featuring Lisa Fielding at WBBM.

Click the link below to play, or download it by right-clicking (on a PC) or holding down the CTRL key and clicking on it (for Mac).

http://radiogirl.us/audio/RG145.mp3

9.18.2016

John Calhoun: positive guy

John Calhoun is on the air weeknights at K-Hits (WJMK-FM), and he talks about his successful music radio and voiceover career, including his early days in Mason City (at KRIB, where Bob Wittnebel was his program director and is a listener to this pod) and Cedar Rapids in Iowa; how technology changed music radio; working in Oklahoma City and Kansas City before going to Chicago; how he got to Chicago at WEFM; how he’s stayed motivated and positive; why he left radio after working at The Point (WPNT-FM); working at WJMK and WGN at the same time; his great experience at the Satellite Music Network; how doing sales has helped him as talent; what makes good on-air performance, and more.

Click the link below to play, or download it by right-clicking (on a PC) or holding down the CTRL key and clicking on it (for Mac).

http://radiogirl.us/audio/RG144.mp3

In the interview, this is his Fakebook post that I asked him about:

This is for you friends that are unemployed, under-employed, or facing a career crisis. Three years ago today, I lost my job. This happens all the time in the radio business. I had been fired before, but there were red flags alerting me to what may be coming. This time however, I was completely blindsided. I held that position for six years. I enjoyed working there and had developed good relationships with my fellow employees.

Fast-forward to today. I've been working full-time at K-HiTS for 13 months. My voice-over business continues to grow. My income has increased substantially. The station (K-HiTS) is performing better than ever. I'm proud and very grateful to be a part of this team. Life is good.

Enough about me. What can you do to improve your situation? If you're unemployed, file for unemployment compensation right away. Then, landing a new job becomes your full-time job. You are now a salesperson. What are you selling? The many benefits you can offer a prospective employer.

Promote yourself in every way possible. Email, voicemail, regular (USPS) mail, texts, social media, jobsites, word-of-mouth, etc. Do whatever you can to make yourself stand out from the crowd of job applicants that are competing with you.

You will encounter plenty of rejection. Treat it as the price of doing business. Do not take it personally.

Are you a person of faith? Then pray! Have your family and friends pray on your behalf. Prayer may be the single most valuable tool available to you. Yet it costs nothing.
"One door closes, another door opens." You've heard that before and it's true. Now, go find that open door!

8.06.2016

Dave Kerner and George Ofman: extreme sports fun

Dave Kerner and George Ofman do sports at WBBM Radio in Chicago, and I interviewed them for this same podcast because they consistently have a great time on the air and off the air; I've never seen them express negativity or take themselves seriously.

First up is Dave Kerner: he talks about working in Buffalo, downstate New York, northeast Pennsylvania, and Scranton before coming to Chicago; working at The Score (WSCR), then WBBM; the difference between working at an all-sports station vs a station with sports updates; his original goals; what makes good sports talk radio; the difference between Buffalo and Chicago; why he likes the NHL (hockey) and NFL (football) the best; how he’s been able to thrive in sports radio; advice for getting into sports radio; seeing the Miracle on Ice hockey game (US vs Russia in the 1980 Winter Olympics); why he went into radio; why he likes Marv Albert and other broadcasters, and more.

After the "break" is George Ofman: he talks about working in radio for over 40 years, including being one of the original people at The Score (WSCR); the difference between anchoring and doing sports talk; how radio is changing; what makes good sports journalism; his passion for sports and fun; working at Sports Phone (where lots of other people also started); getting fired; writing for NPR, BBC, and CBC; working with various people at WMAQ, RKO, WGN, and WBBM; his first break; turning down Toronto's "The Fan" 590 CJCL before going to The Score with “interesting” personalities; how he got so much freelance work; his vocal issues; getting help from Dave Eanet at WGN; advice for getting into sports radio; how he writes sports reports, and more. (George also makes a cameo appearance in a video I did about WBBM, featuring Lisa Fielding).

Click the link below to play, or download it by right-clicking (on a PC) or holding down the CTRL key and clicking on it (for Mac).

http://radiogirl.us/audio/RG143.mp3

7.28.2016

Jim Turano: the real deal

Jim Turano is a creative guy who's a Chicago native, and has also spent his career and entire life in Chicago. He talks about acting in local theater; how he got into radio and how much he loves it; why he’s a huge Elton John fan; meeting Steve Dahl and Kevin Matthews; working with Garry Meier on WCKG and WGN; how imitating Cubs great Ron Santo opened doors; working at WGN, and more.

Click the link below to play, or download it by right-clicking (on a PC) or holding down the CTRL key and clicking on it (for Mac).

http://radiogirl.us/audio/RG142.mp3

4.15.2016

Bill Cameron: City Hall fun

Bill Cameron has been covering Chicago's City Hall for several years, and currently reports for WLS-AM in Chicago. He talks about working at Channel 5 (NBC TV in Chicago); WMAQ Radio; why City Hall is the best show in town; why he thinks Chicago is so corrupt; how he maintains a good attitude; how he gets good sound; why he doesn't socialize with politicians; if anyone has tried to bribe him; why covering Capitol Hill seems boring; both Daley mayors (Richard J and Richard M); how getting rid of the fairness doctrine and telecom deregulation have hurt broadcast journalism; news radio competition; why he likes being a reporter more than an anchor; how he would improve news broadcasts; his Connected to Chicago show; how he gets politicians to speak more honestly; how Chicago has changed; working in Dayton, Ohio and at NBC News in New York; doing play-by-play for Big 10 games at Indiana University; radio stations WFIU and WSIV in Pekin, Illinois; calling high school games for WDWS in Champaign; what is "off the record" vs. "background;" avoiding spin; what news and accuracy are; why he likes using Twitter, and more.

Click the link below to play, or download it by right-clicking (on a PC) or holding down the CTRL key and clicking on it (for Mac).

http://radiogirl.us/audio/RG141.mp3

2.24.2016

Jennifer Keiper: stellar news pro

Jennifer Keiper does news on WLS-AM and has had a long and successful radio news career. She talks about working at WLS; how the Internet has affected radio; how she got into the radio biz; her uncle's voiceover career; how she's been able to survive and thrive, being news director at WLS and public affairs director at B96; how she got a job at Fox News Radio; why network news is hard; the difference between doing national and local news; how reporting helps her be a better anchor; the stories she's covered; why she likes working with the Steve Dahl Show; how she remains objective about news and avoids opinions about stories; the difference between radio and TV; Fox News Radio's quality control; why she likes creating newscasts; effective writing; how she learned a lot from Karen Hand at B96; her early career; leaving WBBM Newsradio for WLS; advice for people who want to work in radio, and more. She also mentions WBBM's David Roe, John Dempsey, Jeff Goldblatt, and Steve Scott.

Click the link below to play, or download it by right-clicking (on a PC) or holding down the CTRL key and clicking on it (for Mac).

http://radiogirl.us/audio/RG140.mp3

12.14.2015

Rick Gregg: talented sportscaster

Rick Gregg is a sports reporter and anchor at WBBM Newsradio in Chicago, and talks about his career and views, including what live games are like; working in locker rooms; what to do when athletes don't seem to say much; why writing is so important in sports broadcasting; why he likes doing sports more than news and how they're different; how he learned writing; working at radio stations in Carbondale (WSIU, WCIL, WJPF) and doing play-by-play; how he got to do news on WLS in Chicago; how he got hired at WBBM radio; doing sports in St. Louis; how writing for broadcast is different from other kinds of writing; how he quickly puts stories together on the road; why he likes podcasts (he's done voice work for the Disney World podcast); what it’s like to have a dream job; advice for people who want to work in sports, why talk radio will survive, and more.

Click the link below to play, or download it by right-clicking (on a PC) or holding down the CTRL key and clicking on it (for Mac).

http://radiogirl.us/audio/RG139.mp3

11.28.2015

Creating a podcast: some tips

I just completed a long article that gives tips for creating a podcast, and you can read it at the Publicity Hound website. Part one is about equipment you'll need, and part two is about producing and publishing your podcast.