Sherri Lynn Interview 8-6-18
Brant Hansen Show
Career Capsule: I started out working weekends at a gospel station in Pittsburgh owned by Mortensen Broadcasting. I left there and went to the gospel station across town to do the morning show. While doing the morning show I simultaneously started filling in as the afternoon talk host at the Salem station in Pittsburgh WORD-FM all the while ski reporting (yes, you read that right) for Mountain News.
I then worked for 2 different gospel networks, Rejoice! and Sheridan Gospel. I left Sheridan to join Brant’s show at EMF. When we left there I went to work for our syndicator the wonderful Jon Hamilton and Christian-FM.
Sherri Lynn, tell us what’s new at the show…. news, changes, & with YOU… etc?
We’re always working on something at The Brant Hansen Show!
- In September we’ll be in Dallas doing another date for the Misfit Tour (Sponsored by CURE International) that was so successful in January of this year.
- We’re very focused on creating content and expanding awareness for The Brant and Sherri Oddcast.
- We’re developing features of the show into video content for YouTube and other platforms.
- Brant is working on a new book and my book was just released in June.
If your head is spinning from all of that, welcome to our world.
What can you tell us about working with Brant Hansen that most would NOT already know…?
He’s so supportive and humble. (I can see some folk rolling their eyes when they read that.)
I know people would think someone with his enormous talent would have an enormous ego to go with it. It’s just not true. If it were, I would have NEVER worked with him this long. I’m a creative girl with a lot of ideas and constant outside projects. He fully supports EVERYTHING I do, down to even personally funding my book.
I’m grateful to work with him everyday and even more grateful that our families are connected and I count him as my brother and friend.
What is the best programming/show advice you’ve been given? The worst?
The best: When I started hosting my own morning show in Pittsburgh. I was so nervous I was rushing through every break. The general manager, who was also a seasoned broadcaster, pulled me to the side and said something to me that I have kept for radio and stage:
“Slow down. There’s no rush. You’re entertaining. Let the people enjoy you.”
It took a while for me to get there but his support for me just being me was invaluable.
Worst: Suggestions that I need to be just like “Becky” or “Stephanie” or whatever we may be calling her now. I am not Becky or Stephanie. I’m a single black woman with no kids and no minivan. I can’t be her. But I CAN be her friend. That’s a more authentic space for me.
Becky needs a loyal, funny black friend.
What kind of daily prep do you do for the show?
Brant does the prep “heavy lifting.” If I see something that fits our show or something I think we can riff on I send it his way. But he’s definitely the content driver.
Also, we rarely talk about what the show will be that day. He preps and then the conversation is us winging it. He likes to get my genuine reaction in the moment. It sounds and feels more natural.
People think I’m faking “shock” or laughter on the air but I’m not. I really have no idea what Brant Hansen is going to say. I love it that way.
What is the ONE thing you must have everyday to do your job/show?
Notebooks. They’re essential to my very being.
Where will future Christian radio air talent come from?
Oh, dear. The places I would pick are probably not where anyone else would: the Improv class, the theater, the comedy club, the writer’s room.
There are people working in those venues who are believers. They think the ‘church’ has no use for their gifts and abilities or worse yet, wants to take their gifts and sterilize them until they sound and look exactly like what we already have.
I hope we give them a shot and support and celebrate their uniqueness.
Generally speaking to the industry what are the biggest obstacles facing Christian radio?
Lack of diversity – not just on the air but also in management and ownership.
As the world continues to grow and change in this area it’s weird that this industry has not. If it doesn’t, it may be rendered at best antiquated and at worst, irrelevant.
Probably a predictable answer from me – but it doesn’t mean I’m wrong.
Who are your radio heroes and influences? and why?
NOTE: These will all be weird. That’s because I’m weird.
Vernon McGee – My mom listened to him faithfully. The way he talked about the Bible was so natural. I was blown away when I found out that at the time I was listening to him, he had been dead for like 5 or 6 years. How many of us have content that could live beyond us?
All things Adventures in Odyssey – it’s so captivating. I don’t know why we don’t do more radio like it. It’s so creative. I love great production.
Michael Savage – I used to listen to his show for hours. He’s so committed to anger. Even when he talks about his dog or boat or Chinese food, he’s still mad. No break. When he’s not yelling he’s slowly building up to a yell and then he immediately backs off the yell and goes back to a seething, simmering tone. It’s so dramatic and theatrical. I could write a whole stage play around that character.