To sign up for the following trainings, you must first attend a volunteer orientation. Our next volunteer orientation will be held on Saturday, January 24th, noon - 2 pm. If you have already been to orientaiton, and would like to sign up for any of these trainings, or discuss which trainings you need, please contact Ani Haines.
Please see our volunteer page for more about volunteering, and attending the orientation.
While trainings are free to active volunteers at KBOO, we do require that you volunteer for eight-hours following each training you sign up for.
We have regular trainings monthly to help build skills in audio production and news writing & reporting.
Learn your way around the KBOO Studios, how to use a mixing board, a microphone, and an audio source, how to do a phone interview, and how to use our production facilities. This is the very first production training you should take, and it is required for all future training.
We also require a listening session after this class. The listening sessions are ONLY open to those who take Intro to Studio and Audio Production.
Saturday January 24th 2pm - 4pm, with Erin Yanke
Saturday February 21st, 3pm - 5pm, with Erin Yanke
This is a required course for all on-air volunteers. You will learn all about FCC regulations — like indecency, slander/libel, payola/plugola, and so much more.
Board Operator Training
Friday January 16 , 4pm - 6pm, with Ian Gadberry
You will shadow the Board Ops for a few shows. You will learn the ins and outs of the Air Room, as well as how to communicate with the program host, how to cue music, etiquette for putting calls on the air, how to be prepared for emergencies, and much more. You will then practice running the Board in Production One, using morning run sheets.
Introduction to Social Media
Saturday January 24th, 2 - 3:30pm with Nathaniel Bachelder
This class is for those with little or no social media experience, or those who have personal accounts and want to learn the basics of social media for promoting your radio show.
You will learn about Facebook, Twitter, and Tumblr: how they work and how to use them to increase your radio audience, and basic Do’s and Don’ts of social media .
Prerequisite: Introduction to Studio and Audio Production, and Listening Session.
Learn the basics of KBOO Evening news production process, how to begin volunteering with Evening news, how the Newsroom production studio works, and some basic interviewing techniques.
You will learn how to effectively write new copy for radio: intros, outtros, what to avoid, how to write copy for anchors, and the basics of voicing into microphones. Prerequisite:NEWSROOM ORIENTATION.
Interviewing techniques – the art of the interview. It’s more than just putting a microphone in front of someone! Learn how to prepare for your interview, how to phrase your questions, and audio techniques for maximum effect. This training is aimed at news and public affairs volunteers.
With Emily Young
How to use the number one tool of radio, The Microphone, to your advantage. We'll learn how to sound good on the microphone, how to prepare your script and voice, and more!
with Jimmy TardyLearn to use the Zoom Recorders for field recording. You will be prepared for both reporting in the field and recording lectures for broadcast. On Day ONE we will learn the machine, and basic sound properties. You will go out and do Field Recording on your own. On Day TWO we will listen to your recordings, talk about successes and problems, and learn how to turn the recordings into “on-air quality” content.
Beginning Digital EditingSaturday January 25th, 1-3pm, with Delphine Crisenzo
PRE-REQUISITE: Introduction to Studio and Audio Production and Listening Session, Legal Training
with Matt Clark
with Rolf Semprebon
Learn how to use the multitrack functions in Adobe Audition, and make spots for KBOO on-air promotions.
PRE-REQUISITE: Introduction to Studio and Audio Production and Listening Session, Legal Training, Digital Editing
with Jimmy Tardy
You will focus on learning the Zoom Recorder, the the check-out and check-in procedure for equipment, tips for getting the most out of your field recording, and how to put the audio from the recorder onto the computer for editing. Then you will go and do field recording, to create broadcast content for KBOO. This class is required before you can check out equipment for field recording.
Music Department Orientation
with Erin Yanke
Learn how our library is organized, how we add music to our collection, and get involved in archiving our live music and creating the library database.
Twitter for KBOO Hosts, DJs and Board Operators
with Lisa Loving
This class will teach KBOO hosts, DJs and Board Operators all about Twitter: what to post, when and how often,
how to get followers, and more!
with Per Fagereng
You will learn how to write commentaries for radio: how to begin, what to avoid, how towrite concisely, and the basics of voicing into microphones. BRING A 1-2 PAGE COMMENTARY TO CLASS
Prerequisite:Introduction to Audio Production, Listening Session
Live Remote Broadcasting Training
Led by Jessy Damon and Jon Wohlfert
Get the training to be part of KBOO’s exciting Live Remote Team!
Learn the duties of Hosting, Board Operation, Production, Engineering, and more! We will also have trial run practices.
Prerequisite: Intro to Audio Production, Legal Training, and the Listening Session.
Thursday January 29th 7-10pm
Friday January 30 7-Midnight
Led by Jessy Damon, and Jon Wohlfert
In this Two Day class you will learn how to mix and broadcast live performances in the KBOO studios. On the second day of the class you will mix a live band. You MUST attend both days.
Prerequisite: Introduction to Audio Production, Audio Production Listening Session, Legal Training
Led by Jessy Damon and Nick Swartz.
Practice your new mixing skills on local bands, who come into the studio. We record their set, post it on the KBOO Website, and put the set into our Library for airplay. Prerequisite: Live Music Mixology: How to Mix and Broadcast Live Bands
(If you are a local band that is interested in participating, please get in touch with Erin Yanke at firstname.lastname@example.org)
Led by Phil Garfinkel
We have a presonus mixer that we used to great success mixing live bands in Studio 2 during the membership drive, and this training will teach you how to use it.
You must have completed up to live mixology training to be eligible.
Led by Phil Garfinkel
Led by Phil Garfinkel
Learn how to use the Capture Software that comes with the new digital Presonus Mixer. The software allows us to record multiple inputs (voices, instruments, and sounds). Once the software records all of this, you'll be able to export and mix the tracks for broadcast or enjoyment.
Discuss some of the basic elements that are essential to quality music programming, both in technical skills and in compelling content. We will be sharing Tips, Pet Peeves, and do peer evaluations.
Discuss some of the basic elements that are essential to quality public affairs programming, both in technical skills and in compelling content. We will be sharing Tips, Pet Peeves, and learn how to do Critical Listening Evaluations.
This is the Curriculum we hand out in the initial Listening Session to get volunteers familiar with the concept of what good radio is, and how to make it!
KBOO Community Radio Listening Session Handout:
What Makes Great Radio?
(Thanks to Marilyn Pittman, Emily Young, Chris Merrick, Kathleen Stephenson, and Jenka
Soderberg for content.)
At KBOO, our programming is based on our Program Charter:
KBOO shall be a model of programming, filling needs that other media do not, providing
programming to unserved or underserved groups. KBOO shall provide access and training to
KBOO news and public affairs programming shall place an emphasis on providing a forum
for unpopular, controversial, or neglected perspectives on important local, national, and
international issues, reflecting KBOO’s values of peace, justice, democracy, human rights,
multiculturalism, environmentalism, freedom of expression, and social change.
KBOO’s arts, cultural, and musical programming shall cover a wide spectrum of expression
from traditional to experimental, and reflect the diverse cultures we serve. KBOO shall strive for
spontaneity and programming excellence, both in content and technique.
Values that are the essence of KBOO and should remain intact no matter how the station
● Community: local, accessible, empowering. welcoming, inclusive, participatory, involved
● Progressive Perspective: questioning, vital, uncensored, controversial, activist
resource, educational, journalistic integrity, reflecting justice, peace, sustainability and
● Emotional Maturity: respectful, honest, fair, positive, peaceful, non-violent, engaging,
● Diversity: valuing, embracing, bridging, listening, understanding, giving voice
● Leadership: bold, exploring, independent, cutting edge, responsible, excellence
● Creativity: eclectic, traditional to experimental, idiosyncratic, innovative, iconoclastic.
We are here at KBOO to make media!
Our Program Staff and Program Committee developed this criteria for excellent radio:
Some Traits of Compelling Radio
- Alternative Topics or Perspectives
- Prepared and Well Produced: Professional. The best version of yourself
-Informative, topical, new information given to listeners
-Being a true host: Explaining unfamiliar concepts, making a welcoming atmosphere, having an
-Having a Theme or thread running through the show.
- The emotion of the host matching the emotion of the content: Upbeat music, serious news, etc.
-Good Mix of music and public affairs. Commentary in a music show is thought out and
appropriate. Music in a Public Affairs show is relevant to the topic.
- Different points of view are respected.
-Overall content is fresh and up-to-date, lively, creative, with new music, new artists, new
-Programmer connects to KBOO and other KBOO shows
-Lots of guests, interviews, local connections
-Interactive with a community, so community values the show
- Web presence
Some Traits of Non-compelling Radio
-Inept in presentation of content
-Discussing technical errors on the air
-Ranty and opinionated, rather than informative. Talking too much
-Repetitive information, guests, content. Boring.
-No theme or pattern, not telling the listeners what the theme is
-Bad mix of music and public affairs. Random ranting in the middle of a music show.
-Programmer unconnected to KBOO.
-Unprepared, not ready for emergencies, not focused on show at hand.
-Disrespect for other points of view, rudeness on the air.
KBOO desires to present positive mission based programming content, not humiliating, racist,
sexist, or other demeaning content.
Tips on Making Compelling Radio
-Communicate with the Board Op: Go over runsheets, hand signals, etc.
-Warm up with breathing exercises, vocal exercises, practice saying the names of the guests,
songs, artists, books, etc.
If you are also The Board Op:
-Check the operator logs for IDs, underwriting, ticket giveaways, etc.
Begin the show STRONG
-Know what the show is before yours, and have a good segue.
-Limit the use of theme music or Boo Player Spots. Underwriting, Community Calendar and
Legal ID (K-B-O-O Portland) are the only things that HAVE to be played at the top of the hour.
Work other spots into the show.
-Introduce yourself, the theme, the guests.
- PA - Draw listeners in, tell a story, get their interest.
Throughout your show, do any or all of these things. During the day, about once every 10-15
minutes. Evening programs can go a bit longer.
-Your name, name of the show, names of the guests
-Topic or theme of the show
-KBOO ID, time
-Back announcing songs
-Forward announcing songs/guests/ticket giveaways
-Announce website, and the content you have put there for your listeners.
-Have interview questions In Advance. Use the Interview techniques handout , posted outside
the newsroom, for further guidance and information.
Prepare your guest:
-Prep them on how to use microphones, headphones, cough buttons
-Prep on indecent language
Also, let them know how they can hear the interview later, that you will be posting it to the
KBOO website, if you will give them a copy on CD at the end of the interview.
During Your Show:
-Promote what’s coming up later in your show. Announce what you’ll be doing next week.
-Promote the show that is after yours. Promote similar shows. Promote specials. Promote
kboo.fm for more information.
Engage with Your Community. Make promos for other shows to use to cross promote. Make
flyers. Post information about your show on social media sites (Facebook, Twitter, etc.)
Listeners respond to information given about the KBOO website and other related sites; make
sure to link to KBOO from Social Media.
-Put your playlists on the web, and tell your listeners that they are there.
-When booking guests, artists, musicians, ask them to promote their appearance on
KBOO and to link to KBOO from their web sites.
Correct ASAP, be ready with a Boo Player Spot, or music
If you cannot solve within 30 seconds, Go on the air and say “We are experiencing
technical difficulties, please stay tuned” and return to music. Do Not go on the air and blame the
equipment or explain what is going on.
Hit the DUMP BUTTON immediately.
Do not apologize or call attention to it. Move on.
For Callers Calling In:
Listen in Cue for the callers, so if there is a dial tone, you’ll know before it goes on over
Be prepared to take the caller off the air and use the dump button for indecent language
or abusive caller.
If you are calling a guest:
Be prepared with a back of plan, or music if you get a busy signal or distortion.
It is important to record your show and listen to how you present your content.
Is it compelling radio?
Is it technically well done?
How does the content of your show fulfill the KBOO Programming Charter?
What are your overall strengths and weaknesses for followup?
Things to listen for, both good and bad:
Dead air, erratic levels, Station ID, Naming of guests, show name, full introduction of the
show, transitions (between guests, between songs and announcing, between everything),
how prepared do you sound?, announcements of other KBOO shows, website announced,
frequent re-caps, the quality of questions, the level of ranting, interruptions, how were callers
handled, Ums and Ahs, the quality of information, good communication between host and Board
Operator, music levels, how were technical difficulties handled?
GENERAL KBOO ETIQUETTE
Please observe KBOO House Rules on behavior, both on and off air.
-Be a good neighbor to the shows around you. Have a smooth transition between
shows. Have one thing ready to play, and set up for your show once your time begins. Clean up
your music or notes before your show ends. Treat the other show hosts with respect .
Also, please make sure KBOO Staff has up-to-date contact information for you.
(April, 2011, EY)
Not technically curriculum, Adobe Audition is the editing software we use at KBOO. This is a basic tutorial for our basic use we hand out after the Beginning Digital Editing class.
Digital Editing Tutorial:
Opening Adobe Audition
Adobe Audition is a software program that makes it easy to edit, mix, and save audio files.
To open, click on the Adobe Audition icon from the desktop or start menu.
Getting Familiar with the Audition Work Area
Adobe Audition provides different work areas for editing sound files. To edit individual sound files, or waveforms use the Edit View. To work with multiple sound files use Multitrack View.
1. Edit View: This view allows you to edit individual audio or music. The most common tools used in Edit View are cut and paste, and adjust (or ).
CD Project View: This view enables you toand them to a CD.
Opening your audioin Adobe Audition
1. Click on the Edit Viewin the work area window. (Note: individual can only be opened in the Edit View workspace. Saved “ ”, which are multiple in the process of being mixed together, can only be opened in the Multitrack View.)
Click on themenu, and click Open (or use the on the toolbar)
3. Find the file you wish to open, and click on it. Then press ‘Open’, and the file is opened into Audition. The time required by the program to open the file will vary based on the length of the file, in time, and the format of the file. (or )
4. Theindicates how much time remains to open the file.
Listening to the audio file in Adobe Audition
1. Yourappears as a in the of Audition. A more detailed explanation of and is included at the end of this tutorial.
2. Be sure to listen to yourwith headphones while you edit.
3. The yellow dotted vertical line with a yellow triangle at the top and bottom is called the Time Cursor. Wherever theis located in your , that is the point from which Audition will begin playing back your file.
4. Click around in theand click play on the in the lower left corner of the window.
Tapping the spacebar on the keyboard starts and stops playback from the cursor point at any time in Edit or Multitrack view.
Editing audio files in Adobe Audition
Editing audio files requires not only a lot of listening, but zooming in and out frequently. The zoom in feature enables you to focus on very small pieces of audio that may need to be made louder, softer, or deleted altogether
Click the Zoom In Horizontally button to zoom in on the center of the visible waveform window or session.
Click the Zoom To Selection button zoom in on the actively selected waveform or session range.
Click the Zoom Out Horizontally button to zoom out from the center of the visible waveform window or session.
Click the Zoom Out Full Both Axis button to zoom out to display the entire waveform or blocks that are contained within a session.
Practice zooming in and out of the audio file using the Zoom tools.
You can also Zoom in and out using the wheel on the mouse. Gently roll the wheel away from you to zoom in on a specific segment of sound, and towards you to zoom out again.
Create a new blank audio track
1 Choose File > New. Alternatively, click the New File button in the toolbar (or type Ctrl-N).
2 Select a sample rate in the list, or type a custom sample rate in the text box.
For audio files that contain only voices, choose Mono. Music can also be saved in mono when it is intended to be combined with voice. This will not affect the quality of the final broadcast.
Stereo files take twice the amount of computer space than mono tracks, because there are two channels instead of one.
The standard for voice is a sample rate of 44100, mono, 16-bit resolution.
The new blank track appears in the file list as Untitled.
Editing the audio file in Adobe Audition
1. Tap the spacebar to listen to the beginning of the audio file.
2. Zoom into the beginning of the wave file.
3. As you play the audio, watch the time indicator at the bottom of the window.
4. If you come to a place in the audio where you wish to place a marker, tap the F8 button at the top of the keyboard to insert a Cue Marker at that time location.
You can use this marker to help find this place in the sound file easily, and use it to highlight the segment you wish to delete.
5. The cue can be moved by dragging the top or bottom triangle to the left or right.
To delete the cue, position the mouse pointer on top of the triangle and click the RIGHT MOUSE BUTTON, and choose Delete from the menu.
Highlighting and deleting sections of audio
1 Click and hold the left mouse button, and highlight the section of the sound file that you wish to delete.
2 After the segment is highlighted, press the SPACEBAR on the keyboard to listen the segment you are about to delete, and confirm that you have the right spot highlighted.
3. Delete the segment by clicking on the Edit menu, and then Delete Selection (or pressing the ‘Del’ key).
Copying the audio to save
Now, say you have a long interview, and you want to pull out a couple of short clips. Rather than edit the whole interview down, it is often easier to pull out the parts you want and paste them into a new track.
1 Click on the File menu, and click New (or type Ctrl-N). This creates a new audio track.
2 Highlight the segment you want by clicking and dragging the cursor over the audio you want to save separately.
3 After highlighting the audio segment, click on the Edit Menu, and then click Copy . (or type Ctrl-C)
The highlighted audio is copied into the clipboard.
4 Double click on the Untitled track under the File list.
5 Click Paste (or Ctrl-V) to copy the audio segment into the blank track.
6 On the File menu, click Save. Be sure you are saving into the correct directory on the “Net Drive2/Public/Shared Files Net 2/your_name/ folder.
7 Change the file type from a Wav to MP3, by dropping down the Save As Type menu and clicking on to MP3.
8 Name the file with the date formatted as ‘MMDD your_name topic interviewees_name clip1’ (ex: 0424 jenka measure37 dave adams clip1.mp3 ).
Digital Sound Primer from Adobe Audition Program Help
Sound is created by vibrations, such as those produced by a guitar string, vocal cords, or a speaker cone. These vibrations move the air molecules near them, forcing molecules together, and as a result raising the air pressure slightly.
The air molecules that are under pressure then push on the air molecules surrounding them, which push on the next set of air molecules, and so forth, causing a wave of high pressure to move through the air.
As high pressure areas move through the air, they leave low pressure areas behind them. When these pressure lows and highs—or waves—reach us, they vibrate the receptors in our ears, and we hear the vibrations as sound.
A microphone works by converting the pressure waves of sound into voltage on a wire. The changes in voltage match the pressure waves of the original sound: high pressure is represented by positive voltage, and low pressure is represented by negative voltage.
Voltages travel down the microphone wire and can be recorded onto tape as changes in magnetic strength or onto vinyl records as changes in amplitude in the groove.
A speaker works like a microphone in reverse, taking the voltage signals from a microphone or recording and vibrating to re-create the pressure wave.
Amplitude reflects the change in pressure from the peak of the waveform to the trough.
Cycle describes the amount of time it takes a waveform to return to the same amplitude level.
Frequency describes the number of cycles per second, where one Hertz (Hz) equals one cycle per second. That is, a waveform at 1000 Hz goes through 1000 cycles every second.
Phase measures how far through a cycle a waveform is. There are 360 degrees in a single cycle; if you start measuring at the zero line, a cycle reaches 90 degrees at the peak, 180 degrees when it crosses the zero line, 270 degrees at the trough, and 360 degrees when it completes at zero.
Wavelength is the distance, measured in units such as inches or centimeters, between two points with the same degree of phase.*
When two or more sound waves meet, their amplitudes add to and subtract from each other.
If the peaks and troughs of the two waveforms line up, they are said to be in phase. In this case, each peak adds to the peak in the other waveform, and each trough subtracts from the other trough, resulting in a waveform that has higher amplitude than either individual waveform.
A compressor reduces the dynamic range of an input signal by attenuating the
signal once it has exceeded a predetermined level. The main reasons for using a
compressor in audio recording and broadcasting are:
To reduce (or compress) the dynamic range of INDIVIDUAL audio signals so that a consistent balance between signals is easier to achieve during a mix.
To ensure that the OVERALL audio signal (the mix) level variation is within reasonable boundaries so make the listening experience more comfortable e.g. over radio, television, in car etc.
To ensure that the audio signal does not exceed the maximum permissible level and cause distortion (known as limiting).
In mastering and broadcast, fairly extreme compression is sometimes used to make the average level of a mix very close to the peak level so that it is perceived as sounding ‘loud’
Sound file formats for saving Audition files
(.mp3 & .wav)
Windows PCM (.wav)
The Wave file is an exact replica of the data transferred into the computer. The Microsoft Windows PCM format supports both mono and stereo files. The WAV format reproduces digital audio by using PCM (Pulse Code Modulation)—PCM does not require compression and is considered a lossless format.
When you save a file to mp3 format, the audio is and compressed according to the options you select. When you open an .mp3 file, the audio converts into the uncompressed internal format of Adobe Audition. You can save an .mp3 file in any format from Audition.
Avoid compressing the same audio to mp3 more than once. Opening an .mp3 file and exporting or mixing it down again causes it to be recompressed. The MP3 format eliminates parts of the audio that are very high or low (not typically heard by a listener) and repetitive “sound data”. Compress too much and the sound quality is reduced from the original recording.
Glossary of radio terms
ACTUALITY - The recording made of an event or speech. It can be used as background sound under a voiceover or as an insert into a WRAP.
AMPLITUDE – Amplitude is the height or vertical distance of a waveform. Generally, the more amplitude you see in your waveform, the louder your audio is.
Amplification – though this generally means to increase the amplitude of a waveform (and hence, the loudness of the sound), sometimes we will see amplification to mean reduce the loudness
ATMOS - The ambience of a place - used as background to a voice report or WRAP. It can be used to gloss over awkward edits later.
AUDIO - Recorded sound of any kind.
BACK-ANNOUNCE - The Presenter will often read a short piece after the play-out of a report - this is scripted by the reporter and will appear on the CUESHEET.
BACK-TIMING - Working out how long there is to the top of the hour or any other dead set time so that reports or music tracks can be played in to the precise timing required.
BED - Music or sound used as background. Normally only refers to sound used during a live transmission such as a weather or traffic report.
CART - A small plastic cartridge containing tape on a loop on which reports or BEDS are stored.
CLOCKSTART - A precise timing for an event or occasion - such as joining up with the rest of the network.
CUE (CUE SHEET) - The script for the Presenter to read in order to introduce an item. This is written by the Producer or Journalist. The DURATION and OUTCUE will be written at the bottom so that the Presenter will have a warning of the conclusion of the piece.
this also means to prepare a piece of audio to be ready as soon as the current one stops. and, it's also used to describe a separate monitor channel that does not go out live so you can listen to the next piece of audio to make sure it doesn't violate FCC regs
cue, in digital editing, means to position your cursor bar somewhere in your waveform, so you can listen from that spot.
FADER - The sliding button on a Mixing Console - used to increase volume or tone. You can use a FADER to gradual
FX - Abbreviation for ‘Effects’.
IRN - The most used news provider in commercial radio. Stands for Independent Radio News.
ISDN - An enhanced digital telephone line down which quality sound can be transmitted back to a studio.
LEVELS - The level at which a sound is coming through a mixing desk. Indicated by the ‘level’ on the display meters.
LINK - The connecting piece of speech between two items.
MAGAZINE - A spoken word program made up of a variety of items.
MULTIPLEX - A bundle of digital radio channels on a single frequency.
OB - An Outside Broadcast
OFCOM (Office of Communications) - The Government body now responsible for regulating Radio, Television and Telecommunications.
ONE-LEGGED - a recording that only comes out of one side of a stereo playout.
OUT-CUE - The last words or sounds from a recording.
POT POINT - A place in a recording where it can be stopped without losing sense. The Pot Points are marked by time and word on the CUESHEET and the Producer and can hit the transmission stop button at this point if he/she so desires.
POPPING - Distortion caused by having the microphone too close to the mouth. Is especially prevalent on the letter ‘p’.
PROMO - A promotional TRAILER for a forthcoming event, program or report.
PACKAGE - A multi-voiced report using interview, ambient sound, vox-pops, recorded speeches and/or music.
P.S.A. (Public Service Announcement) - An on-air advertisement given away free for a socially responsible or charitable cause.
RAJAR - The survey that gives listening figures for all radio.
ROT (Recording of Transmission) - All stations have to record their output 24 hours a day for legal purposes. The quality is not normally good enough for re-transmission.
RSL (Restricted Service Licence) - A short term radio licence, usually on FM, available for up to 28 days at a time on low power. Used for specific events, as trials for potential full time stations or for training purposes.
SEGUE - The playing of two tracks into each other without speech in between.
SKILLSET - Sector Skills Council for the Audio Visual Industry, with offices in London, the Nations and Regions.
TRAILER - A short ‘teaser’ for an upcoming event or program.
TX - Abbreviation for TRANSMISSION.
VOICE-OVER or V.O. - Talk over a piece of music or another recording.
VOX-POP - Comes from the Latin ‘vox populi’ - literally ‘the voice of the people’. Used by reporters to get an indication of public reaction to a piece of news. A number of people will be interviewed and their replies to the same question will be edited together.
WRAP - A short feature or news report where the reporter’s voice will appear before and after an interview clip.
Curriculum for the Interviewing class. Class Description: Interviewing techniques – the art of the interview. It’s more than just putting a microphone in front of someone! Learn how to prepare for your interview, how to phrase your questions, and audio techniques for maximum effect. This training is aimed at news and public affairs volunteers.
DO’S AND DON’TS OF INTERVIEWING
1) Your homework! Be Prepared.
2) Ask Direct Questions
3) Ask Simple Questions... the ones that start with: Who, Why, How, What, Where
4) Ask for details, examples, anecdotes
5) LISTEN!!! Carefully, and Quietly
6) Use Silence effectively
7) Keep your opinions to yourself
8) Ask questions that make people think instead of react
9) admit you don’t understand... say “Tell me more about that” or “I Don’t Understand”
10) Ask the questions listeners would ask
If this is not a live on-the-air interview, ask :
“Is there anything you’d like to add that I didn’t ask?” Or something like that
“Who else should I talk to?”
1) Don’t make statements. Ask Questions.
2) Don’t ask long, rambling, overloaded questions.
3) Don’t ask Double Barreled (having more than one possible meaning; ambiguous words)
4) Don’t interrupt.
5) Don’t ask self-answering questions.
6) Don’t use jargon, and if the interviewee does, ask them to explain it.
7) Don’t be afraid of silence.
8) Don’t settle for unjustified accusations.
9) Don’t ask questions that start with: “was” “did” “would” or “had”.
10) Don’t listen out loud: “Ok...” “uh huh”. Nod and make eye contact to show you’re listening.
Setting Up The Interview
Reporters should keep up to date with the stories their station is covering. Before beginning
their shift, they should listen to a number of bulletins, including those on rival stations, so they
know what is happening that day and have an idea of the follow-ups they can expect to do.
They should also have read the local papers which have more space to give to background.
Reporters are often expected to be their own researchers constantly topping up their
reservoir of knowledge about local news, so when they walk through the door and the
producer says “don’t take your coat off...” they know what to expect, and what to do next.
Familiarizing yourself with the story is step one. Step Two is getting a clear idea of what to ask,
which depends on the type of interview involved and its duration.
One tip - if you are going out for a 30 second clip, there is no point coming back with 20 minutes
on tape. Five minutes beforehand spend thinking out the questions is worth half an hour’s
editing back at KBOO.
GETTING YOUR FACTS RIGHT
Before leaving the newsroom, make sure you have your facts right. There is nothing more
embarrassing or more likely to undermine the reporter’s reputation and that of KBOO than an
ignorant and ill-informed line of questioning:
Reporter: “Mr. Smith, as hospital administrator, just how seriously to you view this typhoid
Mr. Smith: “Hmm. I’m actually the deputy administrator, and two isolated cases hardly constitute
an epidemic. Oh yes, the name is Smythe. Now what was the question?”
What’s the chance of a successful interview?
Set up a chain of thought by jotting down a few questions and arranging them in logical order.
Sometimes the mind becomes clearer when its contents are spilled on to paper. Even if you
never refer to your notes, this can be a worthwhile exercise.
FIT THE STORY
Be mindful that whatever you ask has to fit the angle and length required by the story, and the
result has to be relevant to your audience. Beware of leaping off at tangents that might interest
you or a like-minded minority, but would be irrelevant to the majority. Keep to the point
If time is of the essence, no reporter can afford to waste it by heading the wrong way down a
motorway or arriving at the wrong address. Arriving late for an interview only raised every body's
blood pressure. Check the arrangements before leaving, and allow plenty of time to get there.
Get directions when you are setting up the interview.
Check your recorder before you leave. this is BASIC, yet often forgotten in the rush. Check it out
before you take it out! Don’t forget spare batteries.
Almost as important as the interview itself is the Pre-Chat. This is when reporter and subject
establish a rapport, and the reporter sounds out the course they’ve charted before the interview.
Even if the deadline is 15 minutes away, your manner must be calm and relaxed, polite yet
assertive, but never aggressive. Approach is all important. If the interviewee is inexperienced
and nervous, they will need to be relaxed and put at ease. conversely, nothing is more
unsettling than a nervous reporter. Even if your adrenal gland is running riot, you must cover
your trepidation with a polished performance.
A pleasant greeting, a firm handshake, and a good deal of eye-contact is the best way to begin,
with a clear statement about who you are and which radio or TV station you represent. Eye
contact can work wonders for calming the other’s nerves.
Never rehearse an interview, just discuss it. Repeats of interviews lose their energy and sparkle.
Even nervous interviewees usually perform better when the adrenalin is flowing. Agree to a runthrough
only if you think there is no other way to calm your interviewee’s nerves, but make sure
your recorder is rolling. Then, if the “rehearsal” goes well, you can ask the first few questions
again when you sense they are into their stride and suggest dispensing with the retake. The
alternative is to warm them p with some minor questions before getting down to the nitty gritty.
Humor can effectively bring down the barriers, a joke at the reporter’s expense can often relax
and interviewee and lower their defenses, but obviously humor cannot be forced.
Body language is also important. The way we sit, how we cross our legs and arms, reveals a lot
about how we feel. If your interviewee is sitting legs crossed and arms folded, then you know
they are on the defensive and needs to be relaxed.
there is more to the art of interviewing and developing the ability to engage complete strangers
in intelligent conversation. Good Questions produce Good Answers. the secret is to think
ahead to the answers you are likely to get before asking your questions.
Most interviewers would agree that preparing questions is constructive in planning the
interviews, but sticking closely to a list of written questions can be unhelpful during the course of
the interview itself. the problems are:
1) Eye Contact is Lost
2) When the interviewer is concentrating on the questions, they are unable to listen to the
3) Fixed questions make for an inflexible interview.
ASKING QUESTIONS THAT WILL GET ANSWERS
The Who, What, When, Where, Why, and How framework for writing copy applies equally tot he
news interview and the type of questions the interviewer should ask.
No reporter wants to be left with a series of monosyllabic grunts on tape, so questions should
be carefully structured to produce good useful quotes rather than one work comments.
*The question WHO calls for a name in response
*WHAT asks for a description
*WHEN pins down the timing of an event
*WHERE locates it
*WHY asks for an interpretation or an explanation
*HOW asks for an opinion or an interpretation.
Questions beginning with these words will propel the interview forward and yield solid facts:
* “Who was hurt in the accident?”
*”What caused the accident?”
*”When did it happen?”
*”Where did the accident occur?”
*”Why did it take so long to free the trapped workers?”
*”How did you manage to get them out?”
Inexperienced reporters often fall into the trap of asking questions that produce yes/no answers.
they may come away with some idea of the story, but will seldom have anything on tape worth
Interviewer: “Critics would say the plan to put a factory on the green land site is ill-conceived.
Would you agree?”
Interviewer: “Why not?”
Developer:”Well, how could you expect me to agree to that... I’m the one who’s building the darn
AVOID QUESTIONS THAT CALL FOR MONOLOGUES
The opposite of the yes/no question, but which can have the same effect, is the questions which
is so wide its scope is almost unlimited:
Interviewer: “as a leading clean-up campaigner, what do you think is wrong with porn shops and
peep shows, anyway?”
Leave your tape recorder running and come back in an hour, when she has finished! Pin the
question to one clearly defined point:
“What’s the main reason you’re opposed to these porn shops? or “which peep shows in
particular do you want cleaned up?”
Question scope is important. Make it too narrow and your interview runs like a car which keeps
on stalling. Open it up too wide, and it can run away from you.
PROGRESS FROM POINT TO POINT
To maintain the logic of the interview each question should naturally succeed the previous one.
If the interviewer needs to refer back to a point, this should be cone neatly and followed through
by another questions that progresses the argument:
Interviewer: “going back to the oil spill, what can we do at a local level to support people doing
the work in the Gulf?”
AVOID DOUBLE QUESTIONS
The interviewer should ask one question at a time, otherwise a wily subject will be able to
choose which to answer, and which to ignore. Even the most willing of subjects may forget half
Bad question: “What form will your demonstration take, and do you think City Hall will take
Better: “What kind of demonstration do you plan to put on?” following the answer with “What
effect do you think it will have on the views of the city council members?”
KEEP THE QUESTIONS RELEVANT
An interview is not a mental exercise. Like news, it deals with matters concerning real life. As
we said earlier, one of the problems with talking to experts in any field, is they are liable to
speak in abstractions or jargon. The point of relevance to the audience is whether the point
needs to be included for the story to make sense.
As with news writing, examples should be concrete and real. If you begin by asking how high
inflation will rise, be sure to follow it up with a question about whether wages and salaries are
likely to keep pace or what it will do to the price of bread.
If it is a question about inner city poverty, do not just talk about living standards, ask about the
food the people eat or get a description of their homes.
Get away from the abstract and relate ideas to everyday realities.
AVOID LEADING QUESTIONS
A leading question is one designed to lead interviewees into a corner and trap them there. More
often it has the effect of boxing-in the reporter with allegations of malice, bias, and unfair play.
Take the example of an interview with an elderly farmer who was seriously brunt, trying to save
his photograph album from his blazing house.:
Interviewer: “Why did you attempt such a foolhardy and dangerous stunt over a wordless
photograph album? Surely that’s taking sentimentality too far?”
The question, like most leading questions, was based on assumptions:
* Saving the album was stupid.
*It was dangerous.
*The farmer’s motive was sentimental.
*And that a sentimental reason was not a valid one.
But, assumptions can prove to be false:
Farmer: “My wife died three years ago. I kept all my most precious things together. the deeds to
my house and all my land were inside that album with the only pictures I had of my wife. It was
kept in the living room, which was away from the flames. I thought I had time to pull it out, but in
my hurry I fell over and blacked out. Now I’ve lost everything.”
The scorn of the audience would quickly shift from the farmer to the callous interviewer. If
somebody is stupid or wrong or to blame, draw out the evidence through polite and sensitive
interviewing and leave the audience to pas judgement.
Bad Question: “You knew the car’s brakes were faulty when you rented it to Mr. Brown, didn’t
you? The car crashed, he’s in the hospital, and it’s your fault. How do you feel about that?”
1) “When did you find out the car’s brakes were faulty?”
2) “But later that morning, before the brakes could be repaired, didn’t you rent it out to another
3) “Weren’t you worried there could be an accident?”
4) “How do you feel now your car is written off and your customer, Mr. Brown, is in the
Expose the fallacy of an argument, not by putting words into a person’s mouth, but by letting the
evidence and their own words condemn them. Leading questions are frowned on by the courts.
the same should go for interviews.
AVOID SOUNDING IGNORANT
Always check your facts before you launch into an interview. Clear up details like the following
during the pre-chat:
Interviewer: “Mr Schaeffer, why have you decided to fire half your workforce?”
Mr Schaeffer: “They have not been fired.”
Interviewer: “You deny it?”
Mr Schaeffer: “What has happened is that their contracts have expired and have not been
renewed. And it’s not half the workforce, its 125 staff our of a total of 400.”
Interviewer: (sheepishly) “Oh.”
If you don’t have the full picture, get filled in before the interview begins, but remember, as soon
as you rely on your interviewees for background, you are putting them in a position where they
can manipulate the interview to their advantage.
WINDING UP THE INTERVIEW
The words “and finally” are best avoided during an interview, as a point may arise which meg
beg a further question or clarification, and saying “and finally” twice always sounds a bit foolish.
Other phrases such as “briefly...” or “one last point” may also serve as wind up signals
if necessary. Save your gestures and hand signals for experienced studio staff.
An interview should go out with a bang and never a whimper. It should end in a way that gives
the whole performance a bold and emphatic full stop.
If during a live interview a guest insists on going on over time, then do not be afraid to butt
in with a polite “Well, I’m afraid we must stop there,” or “That’s all we’ve got time for, thank
you very much.” If they refuse to take the hint, it is the job of the producer to switch off the
microphone and usher the guest out.
Interview Simulation: TAKING CONTROL
This is a power game requiring 2 players. One plays the reporter, and the other is the
interviewee. the story is about a landlord who has bought houses that are due for demolition
and is renting them to tenants who he is keeping in squalor for profit.
The story concerns 8 houses on Bridge Street split into single and double rooms, some are in
need of repair and all are badly inadequate.
The landlord, Albert Smith, is leasing the houses cheaply from the local housing authority,
and is charging high rents. The tenants are mainly poor immigrants. A shortage of rented
accommodations means they have to stay there or become homeless. they have complained
about the squalid conditions which they say are to blame for the constant ill-health of some of
The reporter’s assignment is to interview the landlord to to expose what is happening and, in
a manner that is both fair and reasonable, call him to account. The landlord’s aim is to defend
his reputation and show himself up in the best possible light. If the local authority accepts
the case against him, he could lose his houses. The central plank of his defense is that the
immigrants would be homeless without him. He knows that if the local authority ruled his houses
uninhabitable, they would then have the responsibility of housing the immigrants.
The reporter has once constraint upon him - if the landlord disputes any facts that are not
included in this assignment, the reporter must not be dogmatic about the,’
Both parties should finish reading the brief and then re-read it. The reporter should then spend
up to 5 minutes thinking up questions, in which time the interviewee should anticipate the
questions that could be asked and prepare a defense.
The exercise is one of control. both parties want the interview to go ahead, though both are
hoping for a different outcome. Each should try to take charge and to bend the interview to
his own purposes - one to expose the facts, the other to gloss over them and turn them to his
advantage by making them seem more acceptable. Record the interview. Conduct it in front of a
small audience of classmates who can later offer constructive criticism. You have 15 minutes to
conduct the pre-chat and the interview.
Afterwards discuss the interview. who came out on top and why? How did the reporter attempt
to expose the facts and how did the landlord try to cover them up? How did each side feel about
he attempts to manipulate him during the interview? Were the right questions asked? How did
you resolve the differences in opinion about the facts of the story? What did the audience think?
Curriculum for the first class you should take at KBOO. Class Description: Learn your way around the KBOO studios, how a mixing board works, the ins and outs of our equipment, and the checkout procedure. This is the very first production training you should take, it is required for all further production training.
Current Curriculum for Introduction to Audio and Production, last edited Dec 2010
KBOO has four main audio production studios:
o Production 1 (P1)
o Production 2 (P2)
o Studio 2
o DES (Digital Editing Suite)
Production Room Use
o Production rooms are used to edit recorded audio, conduct phone and live interviews, record voiced pieces, produce the community calendar, record underwriting, and to produce promos and pilots.
o Production rooms must be reserved in advance.
o Leave the room clean.
o Turn all components down and/or off before leaving the room.
o No food or drink in the room. (leave it outside on a shelf)
o Do not remove cables, headphones or equipment from the room.
o Refile any CDs you use in the Music Library before leaving.
o Never take backpacks, purses or bags into the CD library.
If one runs into equipment that is not working please note it in the problem log. The problem log is located next to the Engineer's Door, across from Studio 2. This is very important, as this is how the engineer knows there is a problem to be addressed, so the equipment can be fixed.
It is important to return the room to a neutral position when you are finished with your work session. Neutral position means:all mics are off, phone patch off, pots down, individual equipment (CD players, for example) off. Please also take your papers and make sure to check that you didn’t leave a thumb drive or other important items!
Announce (Announcing): To say something on air.
Back Announce: To say (on air) what was played previously on the radio show.
Broadcasting (to broadcast): To actually be played on air.
Cue (to cue): Getting a piece of audio ready to be broadcast.
Dead Air: When nothing is being played, or when there is a malfunction and what is being played is not being broadcast.
DJ (host): The person who is running the show. This may not always be the same person as the engineer. The DJ or the Host is the person who talks on air.
Engineer: The person who runs the board and makes sure that the audio gets played, and that there’s no dead air.
General Volume Setting: Volume 10 for the POT, marked with a thick double line. This volume level is generally good for any audio.
Instant Replay Machine (IR): A typewriter like machine that stores promos. It is used to play short promos or introductions to shows on the air.
Interview: When one person questions another person about a subject (can be done on air or prerecorded).
Mono: When the left and right speakers are playing the exact same stream of audio.
ON/OFF button: A button that when pressed down turns on the audio, and when up turns off the audio.
Panel: When one or more persons interview more then one person about a subject.
Program button: A button that switches the audio input on the selected POT from one audio source to another (for example, from the turntable to the computer).
Promo: A short advertisement for something (often a show that will be airing or a meeting relating to the station).
Potentiometer (POT): A slider that controls the output volume of audio.
Reporter: A person who gathers information/audio for the station. A field reporter is a reporter who leaves the stations and gathers information/audio at events.
Run Sheet: A paper that lists what you are going to play in what order. This is very useful sheet to have when back announcing or trying to engineer.
Station ID: Announcing what station the audience is listening to, including the call letters and the station frequency (for KBOO it would be “you’re listening to KBOO, 90.7 fm).
Stereo: When the left and right speakers are playing different streams of audio.
TELOS box: A rectangular black box that controls the phone calls to be put on air. The TELOS box is used when phone calls are being put on the air.
Vox Pop: Means “Voice of the people”. This is when a reporter asks many people the same questions (this is useful for things like rallies where you want to get many peoples ideas and experiences in not a lot of time).
The board controls all the other machines in the room. It functions using Potentiometers (sliders that control the volume of things), on/off buttons, and program switching buttons. Although there are several Potentiometers (POTS) on the board, they all work the same.
Input: Controls what audio source is being streamed through the POT. Program Assign (1 and 2): Controls which volume meter the audio is seen in. Off-Line Mix: Rarely used in our setup – allows the host to choose what their guest or caller hears. Pan L and R: This controls the balance between the left and right channels. Sometimes these are buttons instead of a dial.
Input: Controls what audio source is being streamed through the POT.
Program Assign (1 and 2): Controls which volume meter the audio is seen in.
Off-Line Mix: Rarely used in our setup – allows the host to choose what their guest or caller hears.
Pan L and R: This controls the balance between the left and right channels. Sometimes these are buttons instead of a dial.
Volume Controller: This is the slider you use to make the audio louder or quieter. The “general volume” level is when the white line on the slider matches up with the long black line next to the number “10”. The volume is turned off when the white line on the slider is on the infinity sign.
Volume Controller: This is the slider you use to make the audio louder or quieter. The “general volume” level is when the white line on the slider matches up with the long black line next to the number “10”. The volume is turned off when the white line on the slider is on the infinity sign.
ON Button: When this button is pressed in, that POT is on. When it is not pressed in (as pictured) the POT is off. Input Label Button: When pressed in the bottom thing (ex. “PATCH 1”) is streamed through the POT, when the button is out (as pictured) the top thing (ex. “MIC 1”) is being streamed through the POT.
ON Button: When this button is pressed in, that POT is on. When it is not pressed in (as pictured) the POT is off.
Input Label Button: When pressed in the bottom thing (ex. “PATCH 1”) is streamed through the POT, when the button is out (as pictured) the top thing (ex. “MIC 1”) is being streamed through the POT.
The CD Players
The CD players are used often. They are for any prerecorded audio that is on a CD. The air room has three CD players, and other production rooms have two, usually.
It is important to make sure you are cueing up the same CD player that your CD is in. When using the CD player there are many options available to you as far as what track on the CD you wish to play, where on the track you wish to start from, and whether or not you want to play only one track or many tracks from the same CD in a row.
To cue a CD, first you must select which CD player you are using. The CD players in the air room are numbered top to bottom, the top CD player being 1, the middle CD player being 2, and the bottom CD player being 3. As an example, lets say that you will be using CD 2. First you must select a CD to play, say you are using an audio CD with 12 tracks. You wish to play track three. Open CD player 2 (using the eject button located near the lower left hand side of the CD player) and insert your CD, then close the CD player. Press the forward arrow button (the double arrows pointing to the right) until the screen displays “Track 3”. Press the “SING/CONT” button until the screen says “SINGLE”, this means that the CD player will only play track 3. Now your CD is cued and ready to broadcast.
To broadcast your CD you need to slide the “CD 2” volume on the board to the general setting (marked with a black line) and press the “CD 2” button located under the slider. The button should light up and track 3 on your CD will be playing.
There are a variety of microphones in the air room. The most commonly used microphone is the DJ microphone, which is located next to the control board. This microphone is used mostly when the same person that is engineering is Djing a show, and needs to announce something (such as station ID, the next song, etc.). The other microphones in the air room are commonly used when guests are in the air room, when there are multiple dj’s for a show, or when someone is conducting an interview in the air room.
Preparation to use a microphone is very simple. All you have to do is decide what microphone would be best for your situation (either the DJ microphone, or microphone 1, 2, or 3) then cue that microphone. To cue the microphone simply slide the POT to the general volume setting, then press the “ON” button when you’re ready to use the microphone.
The tape player in the air room is not often used, though it’s good to know how to use it in case you ever need to. The tape player is usually used when a guest artist comes in and only has their music recorded onto a tape, or to play archived material. The important thing to remember when using the tape player is that unlike a CD, you cannot instantly switch to the track you want. If you are using a tape, make sure you have it cued to the beginning of the track you want BEFORE you air the tape.
It is easiest to cue the tape before you get into the air room, but if you for some reason must after you are in the air room, these are the steps you need to follow: first, put your tape in the tape player, with the side that you want to be playing facing toward you. Next, press play on the tape player and press the “cue” button down on the board. Adjust the volume level using the corresponding POT and rewind or fast forward (these buttons found on the tape player itself) until you find the spot you want.
After your tape is cued, you need to prepare to air it. This step is relatively simple, and is rather like preparing a CD. First, make sure that your tape is cued to the right place, and that the tape is on the side that you want (for example, you want the second song on side A, so the tape is cued to that spot and side A is facing outward). After the tape is properly cued, select the appropriate POT on the board and turn the POT up to the general volume setting. When you are ready to air the tape, press the “ON” button and adjust volume to the proper setting.
Remember that when you are playing a tape, the tape will not stop after the track. Make sure that you turn the POT off after the song is over so that the following tracks do not get aired.
The Instant Replay Machine:
The instant Replay machine (IR) is used primarily for pre-recorded announcements. These announcements may be about upcoming programs or special events taking place at the radio station or in the community. These announcements are called promos. Promos are often played in between shows, and can be used to easily transition from one DJ to the next.
To cue a promo that is saved onto the IR, you must first press the “FIND” button located on the IR, then type in the number of the promo that will be played (for example, to play the community calendar you would look to see what number it was saved under, then enter that in. The number could be 216). After the number has been properly typed into the IR, press the “ENTER” button. Now the promo is cued on the IR and ready to be broadcast.
To broadcast the IR promo, slide the POT for the IR up to the general volume setting. When you are ready to broadcast the audio on the IR, press the “ON” button on the board that goes to the IR POT. The button should light up, and the IR promo will be playing.
To play multiple IR promos in a row, cue and play the first IR promo. While it is being broadcast, press the “FIND” button and enter in the number for the next promo. When the first promo is done playing quickly press the “ENTER” button on the IR machine and then press the “PLAY” button on the IR. The second promo should begin playing.
The turntables are used when you want to play something that is on a 33 1/3 or a 45. Often you will have music that is only available to you on vinyl. In such cases it’s good to know how to properly cue and play a record.
To cue a record, you must begin by putting the record on either turntable 1 or turntable 2; make sure the record is on the side that you want. Turn on the volume on the POT for the turntable you have selected, than press the “cue” button so that you can hear the record without it being played on air. Next, place the needle as near to the start of the track that you want by using the lever on the turntable to lift the arm and needle of the record player. Once the needle is where you want it, lower the lever and press “Start/Stop” button on the turntable that makes the turntable spin. This will make the record start playing. When you find the beginning of the track that you want, press the “Start/Stop” button again so that the turntable stops spinning. While the needle is still on the record, turn the entire record (using your hand) about two spins backwards. This will cue the record in the perfect place for when you go to play it.
To play the record get it cued, then turn the POT for the turntable (marked TTbl) to the general volume setting. When you are ready to air the record, press the “ON” button on the turntable POT. Remember that when the song is over, you need to turn the POT off so that the record does not keep playing.
The computer is rarely used on the air (although for pre-recorded spots it is indispensable), but really handy when you need it. You can use the computer when you are looking for a song or other audio that you can only find online, or when you need to play something you have saved on the computer.
If you’re going to play something off of the computer you must first of all find the audio that you want to play. I can’t really instruct you on how to do this because there are so many ways, but for the sake of this manual I’ll use for an example that you find
a song on MySpace.
First you need to play your audio on the computer (in this case, you would click on the link, then when the player for the song came up you would press the pause button and make sure the song is at the beginning). Once you have the audio all you have to do is slide the POT for the computer (marked “CMPTR”) up to the general volume level. When you’re ready to play the piece, press the “ON” button on the board, then click the play button on the computers player. You want to press the play button on the computer quickly because otherwise you’ll have a lot of dead air. At the end of the audio you want to turn down the POT for the computer and turn off whatever audio was playing on the computer.
The telephone is used to put people on the air who have either called in to a program or been called from the station to be interviewed on the show. Regardless of the situation, putting a phone call on the air can be difficult, but definitely worth it. Make sure that you always tell the person on the phone that they will be put on the air, and remind them of FCC regulations regarding language and slander (if applicable). Also, remind your caller to turn down their radio while they are on the air.
To begin with, you need someone on the phone. If someone called in, then simply answer the phone, keep them on the line, and explain to them that they will be put on hold. If you have to call someone, it can be more difficult. To call someone first press in the appropriate line button on the telephone (try to avoid line 1, instead use line 2 or 3) then place your call. If you are calling long distance, enter a 1, the area code, the phone number and wait for a solid tone. When you hear the solid tone press the code “1321” on the phone and your call will go through.
Now that a caller is on the line, put them on hold. You do this by pressing the “HOLD” button on the telephone and hanging up the phone. The line the caller is on should have a blinking light (for example, line 3 would be blinking). The second step for a caller involves using the “Telos” box. Find the Telos box and press the button for the line your caller is on. For example, if your caller was on line 3, the button marked “3” on the Telos box would be blinking. Press the “3” button once so it becomes a solid light. There are two rows of digits on the Telos box, the top is marked “tel 1” and the bottom is marked “tel 2”. Make sure that you press the button in the top row (so the call is on “tel 1”). Next, turn the POT for “tel 1” on by pressing the “ON” button. Make sure that you keep the volume down until you have announced your guest. Keeping the volume down insures that only what you want on the air will be on the air.
When you are done with your caller remember to thank them and press the “ON” button on the board for the telephone so the caller is no longer on air. Then you need to drop the call, simply press the “ON” button on the TELOS box so that it is blinking, then press the “drop” button for the line your caller is on. The lights should stop flashing and the call is dropped.
Much of this guide was created by KBOO Youth Collective volunteer BreAna Loranger!
KBOO front desk: 503-231-8032
KBOO Air Room: 503-231-8187
This is our curriculum for Live Band Mixing, but without the photos... Thanks to BreAna and Devin for compiling.
LIVE BAND MIXOLOGY
Table Of Contents:
Page Number Section Topic
1 COVER COVER
2 TABLE OF CONTENTS Table of Contents
3 Introduction About the Manual
4-5 Section 1 Basic Music Theory
6-14 Section 2 Setting up the Band- Preparation
15-16 Section 3 Being On Air
17-18 Section 4 After the Band Plays
19-24 Section 5 Glossary of Terms
This is a rough guide to live band mixology at KBOO Community Radio. The goal of this manual is to walk you through the basics of setting up and mixing a live band on the air. Use this guide as a reference when mixing live bands, and make your own comments/additions to it as needed. If you have questions, concerns, or comments we would love to hear them!
BreAna Loranger (email@example.com)
Basic Theory Behind Live Music Mixing
This section is designed to provide you with some basic theory behind how sound works before you delve into amplifying and mixing sounds.
To properly set up for bands and insure that the sound quality will be excellent, it is important to understand the basics of sound and how it works. Sound travels as a sound wave. A sound wave travels in a straight line, but also branches out into different directions. Sound is loudest closest to the straight line of sound, and gets weaker the farther away from the source of sound you are, as well as the farther from the straight line of sound you are. All sounds have different frequencies. Frequencies are why some sounds are higher or lower pitched. Higher frequencies are shorter (traveling less distance) and lower frequencies are longer (traveling farther distances).
Basic Rock Band Set Up:
A basic rock band set up typically consists of: 2 guitars (lead and rhythm), 1 bass guitar, 1 drum set, 2 vocals (lead and back up). For a basic rock band set up you will need: 3 Shure 57 microphones (for the 2 guitars and 1 bass guitar), 2 Shure 58 microphones (for the vocals), the Silver Audix Drum Mic Box, and the 2 Joesphson microphones as the drum set overheads. You will also need the monitors for the vocalists. Make sure that you gather the microphones, microphone stands, the Red Mic Cable reel so you will have all of your equipment ready when you start to set up.
All the Mics and Di Boxes you need live in the Orange Locker in Production One. The Cable Reel lives to the Left of the cabinet.
Getting Ready to Set Up the Band
This section gives you
step-by-step directions on preparing for your live band.
Though there is a lot of work you can do day of to make your live band mixing go smoother, it is necessary to also do a few things in advance. Before the day of your show, make sure that you:
1. Reserve the rooms you will be using (Production 1 and Studio 1) for the time of your show, as well as enough time before and after your show for you to appropriately set up and tear down the spaces.
2. Aquire keys. You will need keys to dead storage and to the equipment locker located in Production 1.
3. Have Contact Information: Make sure you have contact information for the band that is playing, and for any other board operators or mixologists on the same show as you. You will want this handy in case someone doesn't show up.
There are also several things you need to do before the band shows up on the day of the show. These things are explained in detail below, but the basic idea is to have both the rooms ready and organized correctly for the band BEFORE they arrive. This will help to make their setting up process smoother, and your microphone placement easier.
Before The Band:
Before the band starts to set up its important that the room is ready for them. Studio 1 needs to have enough space for all of the band mates and their equipment. Push the table against a wall, move all the chairs against walls or into a hallway, and move general clutter against walls so you have as much space as possible.
Get the Monitors out of Dead Storage. Dead Storage is located through the music library, and through the archive room. They are kept on the Left hand side. How to set up the monitors will be explained later in the “communication” section.
Before you Set Up the Board:
Check the patch bay to make sure all the cables are in their proper places: all the cables with yellow cords should be In STUDIO 1 #1-16.
Go to the Live Music Mixing Board and check BACK to make sure there are no inserts plugged in. Inserts have BLUE Cables, so all BLUE Cables should be Unplugged, and all Yellow Cables are in appropriate place. Inserts refer to the compressors in the rack that you can “Insert” into the signal path of an instruments channel.
First, turn on the Live Music Board, using Switch on the WALL (Mounted on the Effects Bay), and then turn on Monitor Power, which is the light switch on the wall behind the live music mixer board. Lastly, take off the glass cover.
When The Band Arrives:
Fill out a BAND SHEET, have the band fill out a permission slip (one permission slip signed by all band members is fine), and talk to the band and the board operator (or programmer) for the program about how long the band will play for and an approximate time they will start/stop. This will help you know how quickly you need to set up, and will help stop confusion between the band, the mixologist, and the board operator (programmer).
Let the band set up- suggest that they set up the way they “set up to practice”. When they are done setting up start setting up the microphones by plugging the cables into the microphones and the patch bay in Studio 1, and setting up the microphones on their microphone stands near the equipment they will be amplifying. When you have all the microphones on their stands and plugged into the patch bay, set up the microphones so they are appropriately amplifying the instruments they are intended for (refer to the “amplifying appendix” for appropriate microphone placement).
When plugging mics in you want to do it in some logical order.
Here’s a typical input list to use that is considered a Standard Order for Rock Type Bands:
(mic 3)Rack 2 (if there is one)
(mic 4)Floor Tom
(mic 5)Overhead (Ride Cymbal Side)
(mic 6)Overhead (Hi-hat Side)
(mic 7)Bass DI or Bass Mic
(mic 10)Other instruments (such as Keyboards, acoustic guitars, cellos, and/or glockenspiels….)
With Guitar and Vocals you may want to plug them in an order you can “see”. That is, as you are looking at them from the mixer. The one on the Left is first, and so on. Same with any “Other Instruments”.
You will also set up the Monitors. Plug in Power Chord and Red Patch Chord in to OUTPUT on the Monitor. Plug in the other end of the Red Patch Chord to EQ1 OUT on the Patch Bay. Turn ON The Monitor. Make sure the Monitor Select on the Patch Bay is to Air Room (we will set the appropriate volume in the monitors later.)
Setting Up the Board:
Before you set up microphones to the board, you need to check that the board is set correctly:
· POTS: gain is down on each pot, and each pot is muted (Purple button pushed in)
· The dials above the pots (the PAN dial), directly above the mute button, should all be at 12 o’clock
· Blue Section: All knobs should be turned to Zero (AUXILARY SEND SECTION)
· All the Pre-buttons (grey in this section) For Aux 1 and 2 should be in, for Aux 3-4 should be out
· Black and Gray section should all be turned to Zero, at 12 o’clock. The Gray EQ Buttons should be pressed IN, the purple Direct Pre buttons should be Out.
MIDDLE SECTION (where you control the monitor and mix volume) – where the mixing occurs, you want to have Monitor Volume at about 5, which is 12 o’clock, and make sure the MIX Button is selected (Pressed down) Directly above the Monitor Volume toggle. IF you are using Condensor Mics, such as the Josephsons (overheads), they require Phantom Power. The Phantom Power button is the purple button at the top next to the headphone jack.
Check that the Aux 1 through 6 dials are all turned all the way up (As far to the left as possible.)
Check the Mics:
CHECK THAT THE MICS ARE WORKING
Start with MIC ONE. Unmute the mic, make sure that the Pot is in PFL (located at the bottom of each pot) and MIX (the Second Gray button on each pot.) Then pot up the mix volume (Yellow Pot).
Now we turn the gain ALL THE WAY UP to check for mic noises. If you hear sound, you know it’s working. Now we’re ready to Set the Gain.
Set the GAIN For Each Pot:
We will need to set each gain individually, for each mic that you plan on using.
Ask the musician to play, by pressing the 1-2 Button by the Talkback Pot… As they are playing, adjust the Red Gain Dial so that the Yellow Fader Volume peaks at zero. Zero is the start of the yellow dots, and we don’t want it to go above zero.
Once Red Gain Dial is set, DO NOT TOUCH IT. You will set the Volume using the Fader on each pot. We will get to that later.
· To set Red Gain Dials for Each Additional Pot, Take the Already Set Pot out of PFL, and Mute it. Then follow all the same procedures for each additional Pot you are using.
Setting the Volume:
Now, you have to set the VOLUME, (Mic Check). To set the Volume Faders, you Unmute ALL The MICS, make sure they’re all in MIX (should be pressed in) and make sure all the Faders are down. Then ask the band to Play a song together.
While the band is playing, you slide the Faders up, until the mix sounds appropriate.
This is subjective, depending on the kind of band you are mixing, but generally, slide the Fader to Zero, and go up or down depending on how it Should Sound for the kind of music it is.
For Rock Bands, you get the drums set first, then bass, guitar, and vocals in that order.
After you have set the volume for the vocals, turn Mix One Dial up on Vocal Mic Pots until the vocalists are satisfied with the level in the monitors that are in Studio One.
Communication is key to pulling off great sounding radio. Live band mixing is a difficult task when it comes to fantastic communication because there are so many people to constantly communicate with. It is crucial that you have open communication between-
1. The band and the music mixer.
2. The music mixer and the board operator/host.
3. the board operator/host and the band.
4. Making sure the band can hear themselves!
To do this you will need to utilize some tools available to you in the different rooms of the station.
The band and the Music Mixer-
You will need to talk to the band face to face before hand to let them know what you expect of them, and how you will communicate with them. Walking into the back room and letting them know what you need of them during the set up process works best. Let them know if you will be using any hand signals to speak to them from room to room and make sure they understand what each signal means.
The Music Mixer and the board op-
Again you will need to talk face to face with the board op. having a set list and a timeline helps to keep both parties informed. Let the board op know if you are having trouble with any aspect of getting the band on air, and let the board op know when you have the band ready to go on. Once you have the band ready to go on, POT them up on the board and turn it on so that the board op can talk with the band from the air room.
The board op and the band-
Utilize the "Talk Back" in the air room for updating the band on things. To do this, put the talk back into Program 2 (by pressing down the "program 2" button located above the talk back button on the board) and put the anchor mic into program 1 and 2 (by pressing down the "program 2" button located about the volume control on the anchor mic POT.) Make sure NOTHING ELSE is in Program 2. Also, make sure the "Monitor Control" volume is turned to twelve o'clock (this dial is located underneath the Talk Back button on the board.) Then, in the back room change the monitor output to "monitor control/air room" and turn the volume almost all the way up. To talk to the band OFF AIR (for example, when letting them know they will go on in 5 minutes) simply press down the "talk back" button. If you are trying to have a conversation with the band OFF AIR (asking them a question about their band name, upcoming show, etc.) put the production 1 pot in CUE (press down the cue button.) NOTE- if the mixologist forgot to pot up and turn on the band on the board, then you will not be able to hear the band when you put the production 1 pot in cue.
To talk to the band ON AIR (if interviewing them for example) simply pot up and turn on the production 1 pot as well as the anchor mic pot and speak into the anchor mic as you normally would. MAKE SURE YOU HAVE YOUR HEADPHONES ON!
Making sure the band can hear themselves-
You will need to set up monitors in the back room so that the band can hear themselves playing. This is especially important for the vocalists. You will need to retrieve the monitors from dead storage, set them up in the back room, then set the volume for them on the mixing board in production 1.
To set up the monitors:
You will need to attach the power cord to the monitor, plug it into a power source, and press the on button. You will also need to patch the monitor into the patch bay in the back room by plugging the red cord into the output on the monitor and then into the "EQ 1 OUT" spot on the patch bay. This red cord is stored with the monitors in dead storage.
To Set the Volume:
You do not want to set the volume on the monitors until you have the gain and volume set on all of your instruments. To set the volume on the monitors turn up the "mix one" volume on the mixing board until the vocalist(s) is/are satisfied with the volume level.
A Note on Phantom Power:
Condenser microphones require additional power sources to function properly. When using condenser microphones for live bands, it is important that you remember to press down the "phantom power" button on the band mixing board (located at the top of the center section next to the head phones jack.) If you do not press down this button and activate the phantom power then your condenser microphones will not amplify sound.
Getting Ready to Be on Air:
Once your mix is set, (Once you have the fader volume set for all the instruments and vocalist) you are ready to Go On The Air! Woo hoo!
Before you patch the band through to the air room you want to make sure the Production 1 board is set up correctly. Go to the room mixing board, and on POT 28, the Farthest Pot to the Right, which is labeled LIVE, and pot it up to -25. Make sure this POT is in Program 1 assign (do this by pressing down the “program 1” button at the top of the pot.) Slide the volume of POT 22 also up to –25, but make sure that this POT is in Program Assign 2 (you can do this by pressing in “program assign 2” button located at the top of the POT.) You also want to insure that POT 22 is on Input B (do this by pressing down the input button located at the very top of the POT) so that you can hear the announcer in the air room. Turn on POT 22 to hear the air signal. Turn on POT 28 when you are ready to put the band on air. While the band is playing a song make sure the VU Meters are peaking around Zero VU an not Pegged into the Red.
Being On the Air
This section describes your expectations while the band is live on air. Although the band is already set up and ready to play, you may be needed for secondary responsibilities.
During the band you have two primary jobs: to ensure the output volume level is good, and to keep communication lines between yourself, the band and the board operator (programmer) open. To do this, refer to volume setting in the previous section. Make sure BEFORE you go on air that you (the Music Mixer), the band, and the Board Op/Host all have an outline for the sets (how many, how long, etc.) You may also be asked to document the event by taking photos of the band while they perform.
After the Band Plays
This section provides a list of things that must be accomplished before you leave the station.
After The Band:
When the band is finished you need to put everything away as well as communicate with the band. After the last set is finished, thank the band for playing and give them at least 1 CD copy of their performance on the show. Make sure that you have contact information for the band so that you can get a hold of them in the future if needed.
Now you need to tear down Production 1. Begin by setting the board back the way you found it (as explained in the “setting up the board” section.) Once the board is back to its original state, turn off the monitors first, then turn off the board itself. Place the glass cover back on the board. Make sure that everything on the room board is also turned down, including POT 28.
Next, unplug all of the microphones in Studio 1, and put them back in the cabinet carefully. Next, put all the microphone cords back on the Red Cable Reel and place the Red Cable Reel back in Production 1. Then, break down all the microphone stands (make sure the clips for the microphones are off of the stands and back in their appropriate boxes) and put them in the bottom part of the microphone cabinet so they are neatly organized. Unplug the monitors and put back in dead storage. Do a final sweep of Production 1, making sure that all of the equipment you took out has been put away, and the Orange Locker is locked. THEN put the studio room back together so its ready to be used as a meeting space. Move the table back to the center of the room and place chairs around it.
Once everything is cleaned up check in with the Host to see if there is anything they need you to do before you leave.
Appendix of Microphones and Glossary of Terms
This section provides a description of the microphones available for use at KBOO as well as definitions to terms used throughout this manual.
Back up vocals: There to help out lead vocals, some times they are in direct competition with lead vocals.
Basic rock band: A band consisting of at least a vocalist, guitarist, Bassist, and drummer.
Effects Bay: The sci-fi looking black steal box located on the south wall of Production 1.
Fader: Another form of a pot, only stretched out in a rectangular form.
Frequency: A measurement of rate, in the world of sound it refers to the speed that a pressure wave was formed.
Gain: The measurement of power, or amplitude.
Live Music Mixing Board: The mixing board located in Production 1 on east the wall.
Lead vocal: In a band they are the star of the show.
Mixing board: An electronic device for combining (also called "mixing"), routing, and changing the level, and or dynamics of audio signals.
Monitor: In the world of sound it refers to a speaker to hear one’s self, or work.
Microphone: A device that turns sound waves into electricity.
Music Mixer: An operator of the Live Music Mixing equipment, trained in the reproduction of sound in an electronic form.
Patch bay: Any where that cables are used to connect one device to another.
PFL: Solos the selected channel and does not effect the main output.
Phantom Power: Power for microphones that need it to operate, typically for condenser mics.
Pitch: A particular note.
Pot: Short for potentiometer, it is a volume control device, usually in knob/dial form.
Room mixing board: The mixing board located in Production 1 on the north wall
Sound: A vibration detected by the ear.
Shure 57 - Type – dynamic. Pickup pattern – cardioid. Great for close micing anything that makes noise, a staple in the professional audio world. Be aware that this mic works best when placed as close as possible to the source.
Shure 58 – Type – dynamic. Pickup pattern – cardioid. Vary similar to Shure 57, but optimized for vocals.
Electrovoice (EV) RE 27 - Type – dynamic. Pickup pattern – cardioid. Virtually indestructible, and vary sensitive for dynamic mic. Will deliver the best results in the low to mid range.
Audix D6 - Type – dynamic. Pickup pattern – cardioid. Especially designed to be used with a bass drum. Works only in the low frequency range.
Audix D4 - Type – dynamic. Pickup pattern – cardioid. Made for use in the low to mid range.
Audix D2 - Type – dynamic. Pickup pattern – cardioid. Designed to be used with tom drums. Good mid range response.
Audix D1 - Type – dynamic. Pickup pattern – cardioid. Designed for use with a snare drum. Good in the Upper-mid to lower-high range frequencies.
Josephon C-603 *matched pair* - Type – condenser. Pickup pattern – cardioid. Exceptionally good low-mid to high range frequency response. These mic’s were made to be used together to emulate a stereo field. Usually for drum over heads but accordion players like them too. These mics are vary fragile, so make sure they are out of reach of drum sticks, and wild accordion player antics.
Neumann U87i - Type – condenser. Pickup pattern – cardioid, omnidirectional, figure 8. These mics are incredibly sensitive to the point where they are not useful in most rock band settings. They make great room mics, are good with light vocals, and can be useful for acoustic jams. Be aware that there are many switch’s on the mic its self. Right below the grill on the mic you’ll find a window with ether an o, 8, or a ♥ like symbol. The symbols correspond to various pick up patterns, o is omnidirectional, the 8 is figure 8, and the ♥ like symbol is a cardioid pattern. The two switch’s on the bottom are frequency roll off switches.
AKG 451 o - Type – condenser. Pickup pattern – omnidirectional. Good for room micing, or huddling vocalist around. Kind of a weird mic. Not as sensitive and less frequency response than the Neumann U87i.
AKG 451 ♥ - Type – condenser. Pickup pattern – cardioid. Classic vocal mic, used extensively in live 70’s TV performances. Great mid to high-high range. You’ll use it on a small drum set or acoustic guitar.
Sony ecm 65 - Type – condenser. Pickup pattern – cardioid. Grungy old condenser mic. If you want that distorted sound try one of these.
Beyer M160 - Type – ribbon. Pickup pattern – cardioid. Vary sensitive, will add that extra sparkle to the high end of anything. Good for high hat, light vocals, and the like, not good for screamers.
PLANNING AN EXCITING PUBLIC AFFAIRS PROGRAM
(Thanks to Ayleen Crotty, Don McIntosh, Marilyn Pittman, Jenka Soderberg & Emily Young
Why Do People Listen to Radio?
People listen to radio to be informed, educated, entertained and comforted. You’re there as the
host to make those things happen as best as you can, and to instill a sense of confidence in
your listeners. That is your duty as an on-air volunteer.
Know Your Team
-- Your KBOO Staff Contact
This will be the AM or PM News/Public Affairs Director. This person is your support contact, if
you need suggestions, want feedback, or have questions, ask your contact.
-- All hosts of the show - On air or not...
Some programs have one host, others have a collective of people. Be sure that everyone
involved in your show is clued in every step of the way.
Develop your own system to:
-Track who is on when...
-What this week/months topic is...
-Who is inviting guests?
-Topics for the Future...
-Who will open the show?
-Who will close the show?
-Who is responsible for station IDs?
--Your Board Operator
The Board Operator, or Board Op, literally runs the show, yet is far too often overlooked as
a key player in the success of the show. The Board Op has responsibilities outside of the
show. they are responsible for playing and reading announcements, letting people in the door,
answering phone calls, staying on schedule, and running the show.
You and the Board Op need to be on the same page about every detail of your show. A well
organized and up-to-date run sheet will help the communication between you and the Board Op.
Tell your Board Op:
-How Many Guests you will have
-If you have pre-recorded audio and how to access it, which track number of the CD, that
kind of thing.
-Are you taking calls? Should callers remain on the line?
-What is on the run sheet?
When you’re live, on the air, you will need to communicate with your Board Op. Sit in a position
that allows you to maintain visual contact. Develop your cues, such as musical fades, no more
-Will the engineer use talk back or hand signals to communicate with you? What are your
- Your Guests
How do you prepare guests for the show? Even if your guest is someone you think will have
a lot of experience, go the extra mile to familiarize the person with KBOO, your show, and
the guidelines (indecency). A well prepared guest can relax, and a relaxed guest is a more
interesting guest. A relaxed mind allows the guest to think more clearly and more in-depth.
Things to tell your guest:
What time to arrive, specifically AM or PM! (Have your guests arrive 15 minutes early to
settle in, have questions answered, and to relieve your stress over if they’ll show up or not!)
Studio address, 20 SE 8th Ave, and how to get in the door
What time the show goes live
How long the guest will be on the show
Who else will be on the air
Types of questions you will ask
Also, encourage your guest to help promote their appearance on KBOO.
PLANNING YOUR SHOW
The best way to ensure a successful show is to plan in advance. Start as early as you can.
Give guests advance notice and plenty of information. Discuss the topic, find guests, research
information. Plan out what will happen during your show.
Some topics are good mostly because they’re timely or newsworthy, but they may not need a
whole program devoted to them. Consider taking on two topics and separating your show into
two sections. It is recommended you clearly define these lines so that you aren’t talking about
two separate issues at the same time, which can be disconcerting for the listener and doesn’t
present a a cohesive show.
Prepare your guest: The Pre-Interview
People who are experts on a topic are not necessarily good radio guests. Conduct a preinterview
over the phone or in person. You do not need to spend a lot of time, or to tell them the
exact questions you’ll be asking on the air, but you do need to get a sense of how the guest will
talk about the issue. Is the guest relevant? Is the topic really a hot topic? This pre-screening is
called “finding the heat”. The “heat” is the heart of the issue and finding it helps you determine
the strengths of your topic and your guest.
Some pre-interview questions:
I’d like to do a show about ________ and I know you’re involved in that. Can I sak you a
few questions about what you know about the issue?
(Then ask the questions).
If you think the person is a good fit, invite them on the show. If you don’t think they’re a good fit,
thank them for their time, and try with another person.
Also, remember to schedule audio diversity. Gender balance, local/national/international, people
of color, and maybe also current v. historical balance. Keeping the guests fresh in all ways...
Write down information.
Write out your introduction, and your closing words so you hit on all the points you want to
mention. Write out who your guess is and what are their credentials for being on the program.
Verify this information with our guest, as well as the pronunciation of their name or title.
Promoting your show
People are more likely to tune into your program if they know if will be on! here are ways you
can promote your show:
-KBOO website: Create a program episode.
-KBOO airwaves: Create an on-air promo.
-Social networking: Twitter, Facebook, etc. Use your own personal account , and
-Send a brief announcement to relevant e-mail lists.
-Hand out flyers at relevant events.
A Runsheet tells you what happens when, and is ESSENTIAL . No show - no matter how
simple - should ever be without one. A Run sheet reminds you how much time you want to
devote to a particular action and what happens at what time. It lets your Board Op and guest
know what to expect. It is a good idea to be open to change during your show so you don’t
miss out on incredible radio moments, but in the absence of some earth shattering dialog or
unexpected cal, stay on top of your run sheet. As soon as you’re off track, so is your Board Op,
which makes it very difficult for then to assist you in having a great show.
Possible Elements of the Runsheet:
-Intro theme song, how long to let it run
-Track numbers of pre-recorded Tracks on a CD
-Length of Pre-recorded audio
-Time when you’ll introduce your guests and start the interview
-When to do the re-cap (name of the show, guests, KBOO ID, topic of the show,
promoting website, etc.)
-Time to wrap up the discussion
-Closing elements (Recap guest, contact information for guest and for you,
-Outro theme song
Preparing your guests on the DAY of the show
They’re here in the studio! You go on the air very soon! Good things to cover:
Have them get in a comfortable position, and put the mic about a fist away from their
mouth, but just a hair off center. Tell the guest they should be comfortable, because we don’t
want them to have to fuss around while they’re on the air. Also, tell them to be mindful of the
table, and tapping, kicking, or other nervous habits. The noise will reverberate and go out over
the air. This is also a good time to figure out how you will communicate on the air, passing
notes? have paper and pen at the ready. Hand signals? Figure out what they are.
Mic Placement: Tell your guest to Speak directly into the mic, and to avoid turning their
head. Warn them that you may be adjusting your mic during the show, and show them how to
use the cough button. This is a great time to also remind them about indecency, and what is
appropriate for KBOO broadcast.
Headphones: They will need to wear headphones to hear callers, and to hear how they
sound. Warn them they may hear the Board Op during talk back, but tell them it’s not going on
the air, and to keep talking.
Callers: There is no need to answer off-topic questions. Tell the guest you will handle it if
the call is off topic. If they don’t know the answer work out a signal, like shrugging shoulders, so
you can help.
Run Sheet: Show your guest the outline of the show, and let them know they can refer to
it during the show if they want, but that you as the host will do the work to follow it. It may make
the guest more nervous to have that information.
Positioning: They should be comfortable at the start, because their won’t be much
opportunity to move around once the microphones are on, and you are on the air.
Communication while on the air: Describe how you will communicate with the guest,
such as passing notes, or hand signals if needed.
Show Day: Preparing yourself on the DAY of the show
-Breathing and vocal exercises, warming up. Stretch, Peter Piper Picked a Peck of
Pickled Peppers. Laugh.
-Have notes (names of guests, songs, books, etc) clear and ready.
-Rehearse your introduction out loud. Project your voice into the microphone. It is easier
for the Board Operator to turn down a loud voice than to turn up a quiet voice.
-Practice saying names OUT LOUD.
Show Day: Your Show is On the Air!
Getting into the show:
-Have a strong segue from the previous show
-Limited use of theme song or promotional spots
-Introduce yourself, the show, the theme, the guests
-Draw listeners in, tell a story, get to the guests, get the show kicking immediately.
Periodically ID your show.
Throughout the show, do any and all of these recaps:
-Your name, the name of the show, names of guests
-Topic or theme of the show
-KBOO ID (Kay Bee Oh Oh, Portland) frequencies, and time of day
Example “You’re listening to the KBOO Bike show. We’re speaking with bike lawyer Ray
Thomas and we’re taking your calls. “
If you have callers:
You are in charge of the dialogue. Do not let callers run the show. KBOO is dedicated to
providing a voice for the public, but you are not required to keep a caller on the air just because
they called in. It is okay to cut off callers. It allows you to have an organized show, keep things
on track, save time for relevant callers, and keep your show interesting for the listeners.
Cutting off callers is not easy, and may be the hardest thing you have to do on your show. The
difficulty is finding a way to break in but sound smooth. the key is to be bold, friendly and to
MOVE ON without hesitation. Don’t let callers steal the show! Watch out for calls at the end of
the show. Don’t take calls in the last five minutes, and be very cautious in the last ten minutes of
Phrases That Help:
Rambling person: “Well, thank you so much for your call this morning”.
Off Topic person: “Thank you for your call. We’re talking about a different issue
this morning. “(address your guest, motion for the engineer to cut the person off) “So Ray,
what’s the most common rule that cyclists have a hard time understanding?”
Having a hard time getting to the point: “I;m not sure the listeners understand
what you’re saying. Can you quickly summarize what you’re trying to ask?”
Remember your audience
You have thousands of people listening to you. Avoid insider lingo and abbreviations. Spell
things out and always explain a concept before launching into it. Take a step back from your
knowledge and be inclusive. You are the host, and just like at a party, it is your job to make
people feel welcome no matter what level of knowledge or interest they have.
Start ending the show with about 10 minutes to go
This gives you time to do a mental recap, and make sure you haven’t missed anything. Do Not
introduce any more complex topics to the program. Don’t worry about squeezing information in
until the very last second of your program. Stop taking calls with about 5 minutes to the end of
the program. Plan what you will say to give your show closure.
“Well, Ray, thank you so much for being on the air with us this morning. We really
PAUSE (time for the guest to say thank you, or some other goodbye)
“You’ve been listening to the KBOO Bike show. Our guest was bike lawyer Ray
Thomas. We are on the air the first Wednesday of every month. Archives of our program
are online at bike show dot Portland transport dot com. Again, that’s bike show dot
Portland transport dot com. Special thanks to Portland Transport for hosting our podcast.
On next months program we’ll be talking about how to choose a bike that’s right for you.
Until next time , make it a great day, and keep riding your bike!”
(Point to Board Op)
(Board Op fades up outro song)
After the show:
If you are not already uploading your program to the KBOO site, you should be. KBOO”s web
assistant can give you a training. The first step is to record your show. The second step is to
get a Log In and Password for the KBOO website. The third step is to upload your audio, with
description and a photo. It is a user friendly system.
An enhanced website is essential to KBOO’s growth into the future. Amazing programs happen
all the time on KBOO, and with web audio people can listen to them at their convenience.
After the show:
Record and listen to your show. Your Board Op can record a CD for you. Blank CDs are sold in
the KBOO vending machine. After a few days, relax at home and listen to your show.
Things to listen for:
-Was I organized?
-Like/And/ Or/ Ah’s/ Um’s - Distracting? Too much?
-Was the information presented clearly?
-How did I handle callers?
-Did I sound confident and polished?
-What could I have done better?
-When did I sound uncomfortable or unprofessional and what can I do to change that?
Best Radio Moments
Recognizing your best show moments can help you identify what works well for you. Think
about shows that have been your favorites because of the guests, callers, or the topic. What
worked? How can you recreate that moment?
Make a plan. Write out 2-3 things you will change on your next program.
TIPS FOR AN IMPROVED SHOW
Listen to other shows
Take note of what sounds good. As long as you’re not talking in a slick, affected radio voice,
you can never be too polished. Listen to commercial and public radio as well as plenty of other
public affairs programs on KBOO. Make notes about what you like and work toward making
those things part of your routine.
Fight the Um, Ah urge.
Practice taking breaths instead.
They Can’t See You
Don’t refer to visual things (Photo on the wall, flyer for event, etc.) unless you can make a
dramatic, brief and relevant description.
Never mention Technical difficulties
It is radio and the audience can’t see you and your problems. When something goes wrong,
chances are the listener doesn’t know, and the listener doesn’t want to know. Do whatever you
can to keep going, uninterrupted, and create a sense that nothing is wrong.
You want your show to have heart and reflect who you are, but you’ll reach out to more people
if you’re organized. Start at the level of being extraordinarily organized and mature, then bring
in your personality. Over time, you’ll see how much more interesting this makes your show. Let
your personality shine, but do it through the lens of professionalism. Instill confidence in your
listeners by presenting a solidly organized program.
A better voice helps you entire show shine. Here are some tips:
-Smile. When you smile, your voice sounds clearer and sweeter, more open and
-Enunciate and speak clearly.
-Avoid reading long passages on the air.
-Have notes available.
-Four Dynamics of good vocal variety:
-PITCH: This is the musical range of your voice, also called inflection. Your voice
should have a wide range of pitch, from low to high, of the ear to stay interested. You can also
think of it as having bass and treble in your voice. Develop pitch by singing before a
presentation, or by practicing your speech using different pitches. By warming up the pitch prior
to the actual presentation or interview your performance will have more expression and,
therefore, hold more interest.
-VOLUME: This is the amount of modulation in your voice, the level of sound.
You will need more air behind the louder sounds, less behind the softer ones. We naturally
increase volume when we want to emphasize a word. volume is a great way to get the listener to
hear our most vital messages. Even using softer volume on certain words can make for a more
dynamic and compelling presentation. Again, practicing this dynamic prior to presenting will give
you greater range.
-TEMPO: This is the rate at which you speak, the actual time it takes to say each
word. Tempo is fast, medium, or slow. Slowing down a word requires stretching the vowel sound
since this is where time exists in our language. you can practice stretching out vowels on key, or
operative words, as a way of enhancing our speaking style. As well, you can also quicken the
tempo when you are giving background information.
-RHYTHM: This is the space between the words, the pauses. A smooth rhythm is
when all the words connect; a jerky rhythm is when you break up your thoughts, or words, with
pauses. A pause before or after a word or phrase makes that word stand out. An effective use of
pausing can really make a presentation easy to follow.
Explain who KBOO People are.
Remember that your audience doesn’t listen to KBOO 24/7. Don’t mention people without
Well, Ani just walked in the room to hand me
Do:(Read the note, then say) I just received news
that the tickets are all gone and we have a
winner. Congratulations to Sarah!
I was talking to Celeste Carey the other day
I was talking with Celeste Carey, the host of
KBOO’s Afrotainment program...
Oh I can see Jennie just walked in to do her
We’ve got about 10 mintues left on the Bike
show. We have time for one more caller...
KBOO Membership Drive
Membership drives are a time when we all come together to ask our listeners for the financial
support necessary to keep the station thriving. About 80% of our funding comes from listeners,
so it’s an extremely important time. If we want listeners to support the station we need to give
them a good reason. What better way to convince them than an incredible program.
-Put all your best organizational skills into the show.
-Get all your ducks in a row.
-Plan well in advance.
-Plan a Hot Topic, one you know your listeners love.
-Promote well in advance.
-Bring on an energetic guest (and Prepare them in advance.)
-Go the Extra Mile.
-Plan for a much shorter program (about 21 minutes for a regular half hour show, about
42 minutes for an hour show).
-Have Fun! Relax!
-Ask listeners, very directly, to support you and your show.
Updated: Dec, 2010 by Erin Yanke
KBOO has a complex website with many parts. It can be confusing to use. Here, we try to identify what you might be looking for, and how to find it.
KBOO's site is richer if you log in. If you don't have a login, you can register for one.
To register for the site, click on the Login-Register link at the top middle of your browser screen.
You will land on the login page, which has two new tabs: Create New Account, and, Request New Password.
When you go to the Create New Account page, you have a lot of form fields, but only 5 of them need to be filled out: Username, E-mail address, First name, Last name, and Word Verification.
If you've forgotten your password, you can reset it on the Request New Password page.
With both of these, you must do the Word Verification. If you cannot make out the letters in the graphic, click submit, and you will get the form again, with a new Word Verification.