In this age of voice-tracking and syndication, I often come across people who never listen to themselves on the air.
In the old days, we had cassettes, usually one for each day of the week. And I’d take the cassette, and play it in the car as I drove home or ran errands, just listening to the show. Not to see how “wonderful” I was (I don’t think there was ever a show that seemed perfect to me), but to have an accurate feel for how I – or we, in my team show days – came across on the air, and to pick up on little “crutch” habits or words I used too much. Maybe I laughed too often as a sort of reflex, for instance. After HEARING it, I could start working immediately on CORRECTING it.
Okay, cassette days are gone. But they’ve been replaced with truly incredible technology. We have computer audio files that we can access remotely, we have devices for our phones or computers to record the show, and there’s simply no excuse anymore for not really knowing how you sound on the air.
If you want to get better, listen to yourself. At least once a week. PDs often don’t have time to do aircheck sessions much anymore. And if your station doesn’t use a Talent Coach, you can get into some nasty habits pretty easily. (One woman I worked with laughed like a water buffalo being electrocuted. But she was totally unaware of it. Had she EVER bothered to listen to her OWN SHOW, she’d have realized it herself, instead of having to have me tell her about it. Boy, was that session not fun.)
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Member, Texas Radio Hall of Fame
© 2016 by Tommy Kramer. All rights reserved.
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