Lies And Radio

Published Tuesday, August 27, 2013

There is nothing more troubling to me than the RJ interview/audition gone wrong. I usually don’t even bother with a recording and make up my mind in a few seconds then spend the next 30 mins making sure I was right but sometimes I need a second opinion from a live, spontaneous recording. Its all about the candidate trying to do what they think I want them to do. You would imagine deep voice, good accent and perfect diction are what I am looking for but you would be wrong.

There was this guy who came to me and speaks well, he is funny and easy to like and I and want to hire him but by the end of the 30 mins I have not convinced myself. On a hunch I take him to the studio and put him in front of a mike. Off he goes in this totally put on voice and accent like one of those voices that announce the sponsors on TV, you know, “brought to you by…”. I begged him to calm down and be himself but he could not do it. He was fine when I chatted with him but turn the mike on and off he went in to characterless TV announcementland.

Its 100% down to character over anything else including content, diction, voice etc. All I want is someone I like who makes me smile, that person could make a good RJ. So this guy goes to every radio station and gets the same response. Eventually he ends up as part of an inheritance from a radio station that I took charge of. Naturally his ratings were at the bottom of the station. I tried so hard to get him to just be himself but he refused to do this and when the mike was in front of him he would sound totally fabricated even though his content was good but he could not cut through. I told him to do TV and that’s what he is doing now. What I want is someone who is natural, I always say, you can lie to your spouse, or your friends or family but lie in front of a million people live on radio and you will not get away with it and putting on an accent or deep voice is lying.