Desire only qualification needed

By Grant McGee: CNJ columnist

I was at one of those community dinners we have around here from time to time when someone asked me a question that gave me pause.

“What sort of training did you have to have to be a DJ?” asked Robert, who was in charge of taking tickets.

I got the impression Robert was interested in getting into broadcasting. I thought about what he asked. “What sort of training…?”

Gee, there really wasn’t any.

I had started as a forestry major in college. After the first semester I came to realize that you just don’t go to college and the knowledge falls into your head. You gotta work at it.

With chemistry and college algebra, forestry was work. So I switched my major to English, then broadcast journalism.

When I wasn’t floundering around in the classroom, I was hanging out at the student radio station. Actually when I wasn’t in the classroom and excelling at not doing my homework, I split my time between the student radio station and the music store downtown.

My first few radio shows were a disaster. I’d forget to turn on the microphone or I’d forget to turn up the volume on the music. After a while, I had the hang of it and had a regular radio show.

The spring of my junior year a nearby radio station was looking for a DJ. I showed up and got the job, and I got paid, too.

And that’s how I got started in radio.

I told Robert there was one more thing.

“You’ve got to want it,” I told him. “If you want to be a DJ you will be a DJ. If you run into a wall find a way to get over it, under it or around it.”

I think that’s a good thought for a lot of stuff in life.

Grant McGee is a longtime broadcaster and former truck driver who rides bicycles and likes to talk about his many adventures on the road of life. Contact him at: bikedude@plateautel.net