I was blessed beyond words to have the opprotunity to sit down and talk shop with with a radio board op for Indiana Public Radio, none other than Tony Sandleben. Tony has been operating the board for a little bit longer than a year now, he has racked up a very good amount of knowledge on the radio industry. Here are the highlights of my conversation with Tony.
As stated earlier, Tony is a board op for Indiana Public Radio (IPR). He got his start while doing his studies at Ball State. The services he offers include but are not limited to: Switching between programming, doing station identification check ins, fielding questions from callers and recording station promotions. Some of the skills he said they need to be a board op for IPR is you have to have a calm voice. You also have to have a wide range of knowledge for many software that is used in the industry. His clients are usually looking for news and information, so he provides them with the different news programs that give them the news they want. He also says that another big thing is the classical music. Many of his listeners enjoy the classics, so the station offers programs that provides that kind of music. When asked about his thoughts about changes in the music industry. He said that it hasn't really been about the music recently. It has been more based off of who can make the biggest headline outside of the studio. With all of the superstars doing crazy things now, we don't really appreciate their music any more than we do their antics. When asked about the biggest challenge he faces he said it was providing programming that everyone enjoyed. He said as a station that is rare when stacked up against other stations in the viewing area, it is important to give everyone what they want so they can reach the most amount of viewers. When asked what he likes about the industry, he said that the music industry is such a unique thing because of how influencial music is. He says that music can be the most important thing in someones life, influencing them to do so many things, so being a medium for people to enjoy some of their favorite things, thats what he loves most about this job. Tony says that his future plans don't involve the music industry, but he will use the skills he has aquired through this job. When asked about Indiana's potential he said that the potential is huge! With Indiana becoming a bigger part of things nationally, he says why can't we become a bigger part of the music industry, we are creating places that are inviting to business owners, so anything is possible. But he warns that we have to retain the talent that Indiana produces. With a lot of the talent going to Nashville, so to make it big, Indiana needs to keep that talent here. When asked about advise, he said that you have to be willing to go above and beyone what they expect of you. If you show everyone that you you are willing to work hard for it, you will be rewarded for it later.