Jon Ramer Interview

Jon Ramer
Program Director
CKRD
Red Deer, Alberta Canada


Career Capsule: Announcer at CKYX Ft. McMurray, Alberta, Canada ( AOR ),
CKKQ Victoria, British Columbia, Canada ( AOR ), CISN Edmonton, Alberta, Canada ( Country), Network Program Director at WPAR Blacksburg, VA, Program Director at WRCM Charlotte, NC, Morning show and program director at CKRY Edmonton, Alberta, Canada ( CCM ), Currently Morning show and program director at CKRD Red Deer, Alberta Canada ( CCM  

Jon, tell us what’s new at CKRD… news, changes, & what’s new with YOU… etc?

We’ll be at the “I still believe” movie premiere next month and at the For King and Country shows in March.  On a personal note, our daughter Alicia is graduating from college in veterinary nursing this spring.  I’m beyond proud of her!  Also looking forward to the free pet care …

 

You’ve worked Christian Radio in both the US and Canada… what do you see is the main differences….?

Up here we’re regulated quite closely by the CRTC and Industry Canada, our versions of the FCC. 

We report to them monthly, sometimes more with everything from all songs played to what spoken word programs we aired.  They keep a close eye, and ear on our Canadian music content. 

 

What is the best programming/show advice you’ve been given? The worst?

Always keep your demographic in mind.  I’m programming for them not me.  What do they want to hear?  What do they want to talk about? 

One of my favorite bits of on air advice I got back in the 80’s from a rock radio programmer.  Be yourself.  If you’re not, people will see right through you … and talk like a person not a “disk jockey”, you sound stupid.

I can’t think of the worst bit of advice.  Though I’m sure I got plenty!

 

Some say more Christian stations in a market the better, do you agree with that, why or why not?

I agree!  It makes for healthy competition.  It makes us be better.  Doing your best to be better than the completion is an excellent motivator!

 

What’s your opinion on podcasts… is it necessary to have one, are they a threat to radio… etc.?

As long as the demographic is listening to podcasts then it’s important.  According to research 51% of the population (over 12) have listened to a podcast.  It’s important!

 Video didn’t kill the radio star ( Buggles ) … podcasts won’t either … I hope.

 

In what area do you believe Christian Radio needs to improve most?

I think the important thing is to KEEP improving and I believe we are thanks to some very good consultants and coaches.  Keep learning.  Keep doing the research!  No one paid me to say that.  It’s true.

 

Generally speaking to the industry what are the biggest obstacles facing Christian radio?

It may not be the biggest but staying relevant to the listener.   It shouldn’t be an obstacle but I think it can be sometimes.  Not just with music and content but knowing what our demographic is doing and talking about it on the air is a “must” to stay relevant.  Social media is an excellent place, in my opinion to stay up on what’s going on with her and her family.  How else would I have heard about “Baby Shark”?

 

Who are your radio heroes and influences and why?

Larry Lujack, Lawrence of Chicago was someone that influenced me early on.  He was real on the air.  He was relevant to his demo.  He was a great story teller.  Art Volo is another that HELPED influence me at least.  Long before the internet he allowed us to see personalities and hear great stations from markets all over.   Both are on the “hero’s” list.

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