In the spotlight....

 
Bridget and Carey
Happy Hour Show
Mix 94.7
Austin
http://www.mix947.com/pages/2305551.php
 

Interviewed by Steve Harmon



Harmon: How long in your market?.

Bridget: Iím very lucky to have gotten my start in radio right here in Austin.  Besides a 2 year stint co-hosting mornings on KHMX in Houston, Iíve been on-air in the market for 15+ years.  (But Iím still young.  I started when I was 10)  J Carey and I hooked up in 2006. Weíve been together a little over 3 years.  I've been with Mix 94.7 for 12 years. 

Carey:
 Almost three and a half years since I left Cox's KHPT in Houston.


Harmon: Coolest Thing About Your City?

Bridget: Austin has done such a damn fine job of marketing itself.  I get such a kick when Iím out of town and someone asks me where I live.  I tell them Austin and you can just see the envy all over their face.  Austin has become a REALLY BIGÖsmall town.  This city has such a cool hip factor.  There's no pretentiousness yet so many film makers, a-list stars, famous musicians, artists, Ö. Pretty much everyone wants to be here.  It's a beautiful, clean city.  It's an art appreciatiní, outdoor hanginí , green loviní, live music playiní city.  Very active and very progressive yet laid back.  Huh?  I know.  Crazy. 

Carey:  
The Vibe here is all about live music & outdoor lifestyle - on the trails at Town Lake, boating on Lake Travis, Barton Springs and the Hill Country!


Harmon: Was there a radio star you loved growing up listening to?

Bridget:  I grew up listening to Carey actually.  When my mom was pregnant, she would put the headphones on her stomach. Carey had just returned from Nam.

Harmon: No Way!

Bridget:  Seriously, until I was 10, I was living in a small country town outside of Ft. Hood.  I grew up mainly listening to whoever my parents wanted and listening to count down shows with Casey Casem.  In my teen years, I listened to ďThe JammerĒ aka Curtis Wilson (My mentor) on B93 where I got my foot in the door.

Carey:  I grew up in Phoenix, so for me it was Johnathon Brandmeier, Dave Otto, Dave Ryan and Bruce Kelly & Co.  I got to go backstage to meet Brandmeier as a teenager once:  he was so cool to me ... a DJ Rockstar!


Harmon: Still is - in Chicago. What time do you get to the studio? How much prep happens before you even leave the house?

Bridget:  I would like to get to the station at 2:45p, however, I'm required to get to the station an hour early.  I do most of the prep from home at night after the show.  Plus so many bizarre things happen in my life on a daily basis, just living - I'm presented with all kinds of prep.  When I show up at 2p, I usually just do a bunch of messing around until 3p.  Hate sitting at a desk.  Diagnosed with ADD JUST last year.  Ya think?.

Carey:  I'm Music Director and APD here, so I get in earlier for some music and administrative duties, and usually stay late after the show.  I actually prep more at the station throughout the day ... only about an hour on my laptop before I come in.


Harmon: Give an example of one of the many days you "owned one of your markets".

Bridget:  We did a Bridget and Carey Valentines "Cards for Kids" Drive.  We only had a few weeks to promote it but asked the community to hand make cards for the children in Austin area hospitals and asked for people to decorate bags to put the cards in- like when we were in grade school.  The response was overwhelming.  Schools, Youth Groups, Families, Businesses latched onto the cause right away and it was a huge success.  It was our first annual too.  Can't wait until next year.  Our Marketing and promotions people were up half the night sorting through cards (and drinking) !  We were all blown away!  (Hey: Whatever it takes) It was really emotional and wonderful.

Carey:  I agree with Bridget... Valentine's Day "Cards For Kids" was a huge breakthrough for us on MIX 94.7.  Dell Children's Medical Center of Central Texas is a big part of Austin.  And they have a new 1/2 million square foot facility that recently went up in east Austin.  The B&C Show owned the promotion and after pulling the heartstrings for three weeks, we collected over 17,000 handmade V-Day cards from our listeners for sick kids in Austin hospitals.  Out Marketing & Promo Teams did a great job setting us up and we knocked it outta the park!


Harmon:
Good stuff. What's your biggest challenge?

Carey:  Biggest challenge for our show I think is branding "Bridget & Carey" in Austin.  Our morning show has been a fixture in this market for over 12 years and it's to their credit.  Before I moved to this market, MIX had no image as having a content, entertainment-driven two person afternoon drive show.  Bridge and I were thrown together ... literally!  Bridget had done mornings in Austin and Houston, but hadn't been showcased as a higher profile personality for a while.  Meanwhile I had not done real personality radio for years - working as a PD or doing on-air basic jock stuff.  Our chemistry is solid together now, but stellar daily show content and branding are key!

Bridget: 
I agree with Carey - I too believe it's branding the show's name and the fact that we are the only 2 person afternoon show in Austin.  Nobody has any money for marketing so we have to try and be creative.  I put flyers on peoples cars every other weekend about  The Bridget and Carey Show.  A personal challenge for me is having to streamline myself.  After doing mornings for 8 years, Afternoons are a lot more music intensive and you've really got to get to the point quickly.  Carey and I lead polar opposite lives which makes things interesting in a really good way.
 

Harmon: I think that philosophy of quick will help you in the PPM world. Do you eat during the show? How do you try to stay in shape? Wait, do you try?

Bridget:  For me, Itís incredibly hard to stay in shape and be on the radio.  A lot of times Iíll forget to bring in food and so Iím sort of stuck until 7:15p and then end up eating dinner around 8p.  NOT GOOD!  We also do a Local Flavor segment every week and top chefs in the Austin area bring us all sorts of evil deliciousness.  Then, of course, we get cookies, donuts, breakfast tacos, chocolate covered strawberries and more delivered on a pretty regular basis.  I do have a Bridgetís Balance Buddies group for listeners.  We meet once a week and get a great workout.  At this point in time, I am not really doing much more than that and you can tell all over my hips!  I forgot that on occasion, Carey and I play thumb wars between songs.


Harmon: At ten o'clock or whenever you get off, how do you know it was a "good" show?

Carey:  After you've been doing a two person show for a while, there's a synergy and a vibe that you feel after a great show.  We Honestly try to leave it all out there on the radio every show.  Bridge said it the other day, when we were listening to an aircheck from an old show together ... 'when you are really having "fun" on the air, it's going to come through the speakers.  It's gotta be natural or a listener will pick up on it and punch you out.  There's just too many user end options today for listeners.  We have to be great.

Bridget: 
Itís a good show when we donít get entirely caught up in whether or not the suits are listening and what they might be thinking.  When we are relaxed and having a good time, in my opinion, we are at our very best.  Obviously, we are in the position we are in because our VP of programming believes in us and our talents.  I still get to be very creative, just in a shorter period of time. J


Harmon: Amount of time with Cat Thomas every day? Do you have a PD?

Carey:  We aircheck with our VP of Programming, Cat Thomas, at least once a week.  It's really helped our show grow.  No one I know on a drivetime content driven show loves airchecks with the boss, but the environment Cat provides is that in-house feedback we need.  He doesn't nitpick, he coaches.

Bridget:  Don't see Cat every day, but stay in close contact with him through email.  If we need him, we are welcome to walk into his office any time.  He makes himself very available, which is great.


Harmon:  "The best BitBoard bit we ever tried was....."

Carey:  Best Bitboard Bit?  Impossible to say since we go to Bitboard every day.  But the content we have access to is invaluable.

Bridget:  I agree with Carey.  We get a ton of great ideas from Bitboard all the time.  One of my personal favs though is the contact for Fran the Singing Psychic because she's such a basket case.
 

Harmon:  Fran!  Oh Fran!  We just used her for the NCAA and she guessed the Jazz for us .. the best!  When the room is tense, how do you break tension?

Bridget:  When the room gets tense, Carey throws things like scissors, pens, staplers, glasses, etc.  at me (as long as itís sharp) and then I will swing from the chandelier and try and light his personal items on fire. ď Please accept this roseÖ.Ē

Carey:  When it's tense in the control room, Bridget or I will usually page Cat and ask him to let us fire someone on the staff - you know, like a part timer or some new kid in the Promotion Department.  If that doesn't work, I will throw something sharp at Bridget, and she will try to light some personal item of mine on fire.


Harmon:  Scissors!  I question that.... Hey, how do you like this year's re-design of Philip's Daily Dose?

Carey:  I love the redo of the Daily Dose!  Makes for quick access to a lot more information and content.  Content is KING!

Bridget:  I love Philip's Daily Dose!  I can now quickly scan the top of the dose for stories, dates, entertainment stories and more.  Also, I echo Carey's statements in that Bitboard is priceless for us.  We hope to be able to get to a Bitboard function to meet you guys!

<<AHH!!!  So YOU'RE the ones using Daily Dose!  I've been trying to figure out who that was!  heh heh.... Thanks!   -Philip>>>>

Bridget: 
We want to do some networking with you creative people.  Please give us a shout:  bridget@mix947.com or carey@mix947.com

Harmon: You have come to the right place for "creative in radio"!


 


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