What musical experience most set you on the path to a career in radio?
It’s probably a combination of writing about music and playing music myself; usually with more enthusiasm than skill. I was doing a second tour at UT trying to get a master’s in journalism, and I needed an internship. I applied to an editor position with the news side of KUT and they took a look at my resume which was all music writing, and thankfully they said I would be a better fit with the music folks. I started my radio journey as an intern for David Brown’s Texas Music Matters. I’m every grateful for David and the team at TMM for giving this radio noob a chance. I helped co-produce the Song of the Day for a while, and finally worked up the courage to ask to be a DJ. Susan first showed me the on-the-air ropes, and I couldn’t have had a better teacher. Getting to occasionally cover the 11pm to 3am shift Friday and Saturday nights was a great intro into the weird and wonderful world of radio. I’m still proud, and slightly surprised, that I got to play Steely Dan within 15 minutes of The Misfits. Long story short, I was always better with the music bit of music journalism than the journalism part. I feel really, really, really lucky they let me flex those muscles every Sunday.
What’s your favorite Austin music experience so far?
Oh man, I don’t think there are enough ones and zeros on the internet to let me fully expound upon some of my favorite musical experiences. Most of them are SXSW-related. I always love wandering and being surprised by what I find. I think that’s consistently my favorite Austin music experience: constant discovery. Some runner-ups include like five or six years ago being, what I can only describe as, hypnotized by Sabrina Ellis playing with A Giant Dog at The Grand on a Monday night. I hadn’t heard of them before, but I’ll never forget them because of that performance. Another is a particular show with one of my now defunct bands at a now defunct bar. It was our first “real” show in public. And I once read an Iggy Pop quote that I remember as, “When all else fails, play ‘Louie Louie.'” Now that quote is kind of a personal mantra of mine that I take to mean, when the going gets tough, go with simple and what you know. At that show, I took it literally. We ran out of our songs, but the crowd (i.e. the friends we roped into coming) wanted more. So I just started playing those first chords….and it was awesome.
Why public rather than commercial radio?
Did you read that bit above about playing Steely Dan and the Misfits in the same shift?
How do you spend your time when you’re not spinning records on the air?
You mean when I’m not spinning 60s garage rock and soul records at home? I work as a content strategist for a local experience design studio called Mighty & True. I love riding my bike, and keep telling myself that I’m going to get my guitar out again. I love making cocktails at home, and I’ve got a small, but I think quite eclectic bar set up. I also just started taking improv classes, and I’m pretty stoked about that.
Finish the sentence: “Austin Music Is ….”
…always moving forward.