Nine years ago I caught the radio bug and since then it has expanded to Television, Information Technology, and having an on-air presence. A lot has been learned along the way, so when you call on us to help with your problem, we’ll use our experience to get you up and running quickly.
The journey began at KMEM-FM in Memphis, Missouri. I had an interest in all things electronic from an early age, and Dave Boden, a Junior High history instructor knew about this. Dave hosted the Friday Night “Pepsi-Cola Scoreboard Show”, and so one day my bold self-asked him if I could intern with the show. To my surprise, he said yes and something was started. I would go on to meet Mark McVey, KMEM’s Owner and Chief Engineer, not long after that. Then as I entered high school, I was gainfully employed by the local radio station.
The first summer at KMEM was huge! We installed wireless bridges by Ubiquity Wireless for a new kind of broadcast remote. This kind of remote didn’t require POTS or ISDN… Both were becoming expensive options at this point, and ISDN was waning in availability in the area. The decision was made to move to an IP Audio Codec by Comrex called Access. The unit allowed for near studio quality audio from virtually anywhere there was an internet connection. The quality of the Friday Night Football broadcasts was noticed by many, and it made them much more listenable, not to mention immersive. It’s always funny to note that I couldn’t drive and the General Manager had to take me to each stadium to get them set for the season. We’re still closely partnered with KMEM after all these years. You can check out the projects page to see what’s up.
Next on the journey was KTVO-TV. KTVO is a TV station licensed to Kirksville, Missouri serving Nielsen Video Market 200. KTVO was unique in that you would meet people you grew up watching and some of the newest talent that colleges nationwide had turned out into the world. Some go onto huge markets and then you can say you knew them before they were famous. Others stick around for a long time, and they become friends. I switched live television there as my primary duty. Everything you saw on the station had a live human behind the scenes making sure that you could see it. We had a dual affiliation as we were in a small market. The primary program stream ran ABC and 3.2 ran CBS. There was only one operator for two networks, but somehow you made it work, and flawlessly at that. At least you tried to make it flawless. John Wise, KTVO’s Chief Engineer at the time, told me that TV wasn’t McDonald’s, and if you messed up then a lot of people noticed. I took that to heart and always tried for an error-free 8-hour shift.
My time at KTVO would also come to a close and the bright lights of the big city were calling my name. After several interviews, Minneapolis became my new home in December of 2014. A small public station in the nation’s 16th largest radio market needed a Chief Engineer, and it turned out I was the man for the job. The station had been maintained but was behind the times compared to other stations in the market. There wasn’t an automated playout system, Windows Server 2003 was still in use, and the Wi-Fi didn’t cover the whole building. By the time I left, we solved all those problems and many others. Rivendell Radio Automation was selected for its cost-effectiveness as well as it’s simple interface. We also rebuilt the primary broadcast studio… Wheatstone’s WheatNet was chosen for the console, but many aspects of the system we recycled from the old studio. Monitor Speakers, Microphones, and the sound absorbing panels were all reused.
The next step, and where I’m currently moored, is iHeartMedia – Minneapolis. The group has a presence in ten places up and down the dial. Stations include KTLK-AM, Alt 93.3, 96.7 Pride Radio, KTCZ-FM (Cities97), KFXN-FM (The FAN!), KDWB-FM (The Twin Cities’ #1 Hit Music Station), KEEY-FM (K102 – Today’s Best Country), Hot 102.5 (Hip-Hop and R&B), and KQQL-FM (KOOL108 – Minnesota’s Greatest Hits).