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Radio Interview

                                     

Jason Ramsey

Station Development Officer

Branch FM

Dewsbury, W. Yorkshire UK

 

 

Jason's Career Capsule
Started in Radio at age 15 doing community stuff for 2 years. When 17 I did some bits and pieces for CrossRhythms City Radio in Stoke. I gave up Hospital Radio so that I could give my weekends to that. I have worked for Alpha 103.2 on a swing basis, Grapevine FM and Refresh FM, both RSL’s before coming to Branch 3 weeks ago.

 

1. Personally how do you keep the ministry in the “business”? 

Admittedly this is a difficult task.  I was at a meeting today with several community radio bosses and all of them admitted that money was a real issue. I do spend a lot of time thinking about the “business.” But I am a Christian, and therefore my faith is not a badge of honour, it’s a life that is to be lived every day and in every thing I do. Branch FM is a ministry through the music it plays, through the speech we put out and through the lives of each and every one of us. That is the beauty of community radio, we engage our locality and show them from our lives that Jesus Christ is alive and we are his. You may say that doesn’t answer the question, but it does, never forget that ministry is a life thing, not a done thing solely.

 

2. Overall, how is Christian radio different today, from 5 years ago?

I wasn’t in Christian Radio 5 years ago. But then again there was no Christian radio 5 years ago. There was UCB doing its thing and I think CrossRhythms were in their early days. But it was the birth of community radio that allowed Christian radio to come through. That is a beautiful thing. Jesus was involved in community. A radio station that specifies that you get involved in your locality is- well- perfect for Christians. A commercial station would hate it, there is no money to be made. But there is a gospel to be shared.

 

3. What do you think are the main characteristics of today’s Christian radio PD?

Faith, vision and commitment. Branch FM knows that if 500 people gave £10 a month to us then we’d run advert free with all bills paid. Faith is required for daily survival, a reliance of the people of God. The bible says without a vision the people perish. A station without a vision will fall well short.

 

4. What criteria do you require for a song to be played on your station?

The official answer is that it depends on what type of song it is and whether it fits into our station format. We play pretty much 100% CCM. But anyone who wonders if they could be played on the station simply needs to send me the disc and I will have a listen. We like uplifting and encouraging God focussed music.

 

5. What kind of promotions work best for Christian radio?

Not sure what you mean by this to be honest. Any good promotions would work.

 

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

Send us CD’s and interviews. It is a nightmare having to chase such things. There are some labels that are better than others. If organised correctly we can give them the coverage they need and it frees us to get on with what we should be doing.

 

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

Money! We have an apathetic nation. And stations won’t succeed unless the people of God get behind it. Also local opposition. There is the temptation to settle for average too. I believe Christian stations should desire the best I their programming and entertainment they put out. Just like Christian music these days is as good as secular in my opinion. I make no bones of the fact that I want my breakfast show on Branch to rival Chris Moyles and win every award there is. Excellence in all things.

 

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

To be entertaining. To be honest and faithful and clean. Always strive to be the best because you want to offer the best to God, and attract people to your message, the wonderful message of the cross.

 

9. What (if any) Christian radio stations do you consider as innovators today?

I have loads of respect for CrossRhythms, Revival, UCB and all the other established stations. I hope Branch FM will be the same. And that we can work with other Christian stations. We’re not competing. We’re working for the kingdom.

 

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

That’s when our licence ends. So… still going! Holding concerts, meetings and making huge impact on their community. Hopefully a new breed of presenters will have come through. And all those who learnt their trade in community radio will have moved on to big stations in the secular market, impacting those for Christ. Like Dan Walker does now on the BBC. He is in earthly terms my hero.

 

 

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