Show Notes

Welcome to Episode No. 79 – for this Tuesday, April 28, 2020. If this season has taught us anything, it’s that the state of some industries is much more resilient than others during a crisis.

Today, we examine the role of radio during COVID-19 and how it’s adjusting to the times. We’ve reached out to some of the finest in the industry—Fred Jacobs, president of Jacobs Media, and Ryan Wrecker, radio personality of Overnight America. They’ll talk about how this pandemic has affected their industry and what those changes could mean for the future of radio.

Today’s Guests

00:08:18 into the Show | Fred Jacobs

Fred Jacobs, Founder and President of Jacobs Media

Fred Jacobs is the founder and president of Jacobs Media, a research and consulting firm. He’s an entrepreneur who has launched projects like Techsurveys, an influential research tool to help identify trends and patterns in the industry. Fred was the one who came up with the Classic Rock station format when the schism between older rock and alternative rock first began to form. When smartphone technology came along, Fred delved into the app industry to make sure that radio mobility wouldn’t be left behind. And so he founded Jācapps, seeing the development of more than 1200 apps generating more than 25 million downloads.

Fred is an inductee of the Michigan Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame (2005), a recipient of Radio Ink’s Luminary Award (2011), and the Outstanding Alumni Award from Michigan State University’s College of Communication Arts. Fred was also inducted into the National Radio Hall of Fame in 2018.

00:30:09 into the Show | Ryan Wrecker

Ryan Wrecker, Talk Radio Host of Overnight America

Ryan Wrecker is the radio personality and host for Overnight America, a call-in talk show that airs weeknights on KMOX FM in St. Louis. Ryan moved his family to St. Louis in 2017 but originally hails from just outside Detroit and is a proud alumnus of Central Michigan University. Ryan’s career has been far-reaching in terms of geography and scope.

Before moving to St. Louis, Ryan spent time “up and down the radio dial” in cities like Ohio, Indiana, and Wisconsin. He worked his way up to the position of Program Director before reconciling in a space synonymous with his ultimate passion – on-air somewhere between midnight and just before the witching hour, keeping Americans company while literally talking them through those things that keep us up at night (from the silly and serious to everything in between).

By the way, during our interview, you might have heard Ryan say that he just passed his 3-year anniversary with Overnight Radio. Happy Anniversary, Ryan!!

⇣ From Ryan on his first day with Overnight America: