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Radio Interview

                                     

Chris Carmichael

Program Director

WQFL

Rockford

 

 

Chris' Career Capsule
When I say I started in radio from meeting someone on the street, I really mean it. Okay, well, it wasnít exactly on the street but at a local musical audition. I always dreamed of being behind the microphone; only thereís so much more to the business.  I climbed from a lonely weekend weather announcer, to overnights, to mid-days, to afternoons, to mornings, and to mid-days again.  I started as a Production Director and now consider it a privilege to lead the most creative team in the industry.  I canít take any credit for how I got here for itís God ordained; itís the people I have met along the way that encouraged, mentored, and had a little faith in a guy who has a passion for people.  The Lord quickly opened doors to a land of opportunity.  Now, five years later I go to bed with my shoes on so I can get to work faster the next day; for I know thereís one more person that needs to hear the good news. 

 

 
1. Tell us about your market and how it is unique?
 
Our market is certainly unique; three Christian radio stations are locally-owned, 101QFL being the only 
Christian commercial radio station.  We stand-firm on a top-40 edgy CHR format, a format that is not 
duplicated by any other station in the area.
 
 
 
2. What is the most fulfilling aspect to you personally about Christian radio?
 
To encourage people every day while in turn being encouraged. Christ came on this Earth to set an 
example of wild, passionate service.  Christian radio is in its infancy stageóstill evolving, ever-changing 
and broadcasting to people whose hearts are bored with life and lost in worldly expectations.
 
 
 
3. Here is your chance to testify on behalf of your station...How has God used WQFL?
 
Our focus: to serve the community.  We have affixed our eyes on service.  We began Operation: 
IMPACT this year to travel around the community changing lives by acts of kindness.  A family recently 
lost their home to fire.  In 48-hours we had a remote vehicle out at a local church broadcasting live asking 
for donations for the family.  The family received a place to live rent-free for six months, a car, 
a school bus load of clothes, and a diamond wedding ring for the wife who happened to leave hers behind the 
morning of the fire.  The family members were neither believers nor followers of Christ.  
Today, they are open to Godly intervention and church outreach.  
 
 
 
4. What is the criteria that determines if a song receives airplay on your station? 
 
No comment.  The answer to this question is a secret, which is hidden in the 101QFL vault. 
Just kidding! Each song that is aired on 101QFL goes through several different filters:
 
A-First and foremost, the song must hold true to fundamental evangelical Christian 
theology
 
B-The song must be relevant to 101QFL's listener profile.  It must have
relevance to Susan, 101QFL's 38 year old listener. 
 
C-The song must fit stylistically within the CHR/Top 40 format of 101QFL.
 
 
 
5. What kind of promotions work best for your station?
 
Family oriented promotions!  Our promotions department seeks ways to satisfy our 
listener, programming, and sales.  We do research to understand our listenerís lifestyle.
What does she need, want and fear?  Our promotional planning meetings encapsulate our 
strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats.  If youíre not planning youíre planning 
to fail.
 
 
 
6. How do you think Christian Record labels can better serve Christian radio?
 
The amounts of singles that sit on my desk make me cringe.  Many times, the add date of 
a single is a week after it has landed on my desk.  I would be able to plan better if 
I had an idea of what's coming down the road and when.  On a somewhat related note, 
our mainstream counterpart has already embraced digital servicing.  Digital singles will 
be a huge help in my day-to-day operation.
 
 
 
7. In your opinion what are the biggest obstacles facing Christian radio today?
 
Over time, I fear that Christian radio stations will loosen up on their strong, 
traditional roots. I donít want Christian radio to program based on sound and dilute 
the Gospel message. 
 
 
 
8. What do you believe is the primary role of the Christian radio air personality today?
 
To invigorate people and show believers and non-believers alike that being a Christian 
is fun!  Although in Hebrews we learn that being a Christian pretty much guarantees a 
tougher life, we must understand that faith comes by truly relying on Christ for strength.  
Also, Christian personalities need to be in the world and not of the world.  They need to
 understand what a non-Christian faces so they can offer relatable Christ-centered answers 
to everyday issues without coming across as a ďholy roller.Ē
 
 
 
9. Where do you see Christian radio in 5 years?
 
I believe that Christian radio will have more mainstream acceptance wherein both saved 
and unsaved people are listening. As long as we become more relatable to target listeners, 
providing local-oriented programming, Christian stations will see higher ratings and 
growth and a competitive advantage secular stations can only dream of.  

 

       

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