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Radio Interview

                                     

Allen Price

Music Director

CIXN

Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada

 

 

Allen's Career Capsule
I started in radio by accident.  I just finished a job with a highway project and decided to volunteer at JoyFM.  My first day here was supposed to be to observe and see how things worked....it was April 1st, 2002....When I was told my mic was live and I was on the air I thought it was an April fools joke....boy was I wrong.  I've been here doing the morning show ever since!
 
 
1. Tell us about your market and how it is unique?

JoyFM is nestled in the St. John River valley in Fredericton, the Capital of New Brunswick.  We are home to two universities - The University of New Brusnwick, and St. Thomas University (GO TOMMIES!).  We are a 50W station that has a potential reach of approximately 110,000 people. 

 

2. What is the most fulfilling aspect to you personally about Christian radio?

The most fulfilling aspect of Christian Radio is definitely it's ability to reach the community with the Gospel.  Recent statistics tell us that approximately 1/3 of Christian Radio listeners are non-churched/non-Christian.  These people simply listen because they like the music and/or appreciate the Family Friendly programming.  What an awesome opportunity the Lord has given everyone involved in Christian Radio.  I mean, just think about it for a minute.  In a market of 100,000 and 5% market share means that you are sharing the Gospel with as many as 1700 un-saved people at any given moment!  How much more fulfilling can a job be than that!

 

3. Here is your chance to testify on behalf of your station...How has God used Joy FM?

God continues to use JoyFM and it's staff every day in exciting ways.  In the church community we are quickly becoming a hub of information and co-operation amongst the churches in our area.  It's really a neat experience to have a Baptist Church call and say "We want to do an event and host it at the Pentecostal Church and have them involved, can you help?"

 
Another way God continues to work through us in the community is in reaching people for Christ.  During our recent Share-A-Thon, we received a donation and a letter that really touched us.  The writer told us of a low point in their life and how they had been contemplating suicide.  They had been listening to JoyFM a little but on one particular day they decided it was time to end their life.  They had a small transistor radio with them but no reception.  The climbed over the railing of one of our bridges and were about to jump when JoyFM came blasting loud and clear!  The letter went on to say that JoyFM and Kendra Chandler - the announcer on at the time - saved their life!  They thank God for JoyFM!  Praise the Lord!  This is just one example of how God has used JoyFM to touch lives.  We continue to get a lot of feedback from the community about our programming and have been told a number of stories about people making first time decisions for Christ!

 

4. What is the criteria that determines if a song receives airplay on your station?

That's a complex question.  My formula (in general) is this.  First I listen to a short piece of the song 20-30 sec at the start and then the chorus.  If you've got my attention musically, I give a harder listen for production value and then go to the lyrics.  If the song is strong musically and lyrically, it gets played.  We set a pretty high bar here at JoyFM musically, lyrically and in production quality.  We do however tend to bend some 'rules' when it comes to Canadian Content and Local artists.

 

5. What kind of promotions work best for your station?

We have a lot of fun with on-air contesting - everything from regular contests like The Prize Pyramid to short term contest for special events and concerts.  We have also been very successful with our Summer Block parties and concert events.

 

6. How do you think Christian Record labels can better serve Christian radio?

I think we need better contact with the record labels.  More artist interviews, more single releases (instead of having me decide to play a couple of cuts when an album is released), more concert tours etc.  I also think labels need to do more artist marketing and promotion both through Christian Media and Secular media.  Christian Music continues to grow in Canada and I think together we can continue to see that growth and reach even more people with the Gospel message!

 

7. In your opinion what are the biggest obstacles facing Christian radio today?

I think there are two main obstacles facing Christian Music (in particular radio) today.  The first is Stereotyping.  Christian music still hasn't emerged in society as fun, cool music that's safe.  We're still pigeonholed as 'Church Music', organ and piano playing Amazing Grace (the old way not Todd Agnew) with an opera soloist or congregational singing.  That may have been true in the 1800's but we've come a long way!  Christian music can go head to head musically with any artist out there.  We get our edge because of our lyrics - you don't have to worry about what an artist is wearing or suggesting.  It's family friendly.

 
The other obstacle is in how the CRTC lumps any faith based programming into one heap and calls it 'Religious Broadcasting.'  We need to move away from this broad spectrum and begin to separate spiritual points of view.  I don't mean to suggest allowing 'hate broadcasting' and disguising it as religious right, instead we need to allow for differences to exist.

 

8. What do you believe is the primary role of the Christian radio air personality today?

The primary goal of the on-air personality is education.  Education about the music and the message.  We don't need to preach but a little teaching goes a long way.  If we have 1/3 of our listeners that aren't involved in a church, we are their church.  We need to set an example and be different than other jocks.  We need to sound similar but different.  We can still have fun and goof around, we still do news, sports and weather, we still play contests but we can do all that and still get the Christian message out there.

 

9. Where do you see Christian radio in 5 years?

I see Christian Radio continuing to grow in Canada and even becoming, dare I say it, mainstream!  Mom's and Dad's don't have to worry about what role models their children are developing through radio.  They don't have to worry about what an artist says in their lyrics or how they dress.  As the moral majority grows and starts to stand up for truth and values, Christian Radio will continue to grow!


 

        

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