Name: Chris Chaos
Job: DJ at large
Current home: Lee Road, Phenix City
Hometown: Narragansett, R.I. -- New Englaner first half my life, Southerner second half.
Education: Narragansett High School, Chariho Vo-Tech, Rhode Island Junior College and URI.
Single or Married: Wife, Deborah, 20 years (bless her heart -- I still have to talk to the mayor about erecting a bronze statue in her name downtown.
Kids: Throw a rock and you'll hit one!
Favorite quote: “No Guts, No Glory!” -- Big World Band- 1981
Favorite Book: Maxim
Favorite Movie: Horrible Bosses
Favorite Restaurant: Dunkin’ Donuts
Best Concert: Pink Floyd, The Wall & Foxy Shazam, Columbus 2012
Other interests: I own Perfect Tan, a 15 Bed Tan Salon in Phenix City, Promote Concerts.
How has satellite radio impacted the local radio business?
I love satellite radio! I’ve had a subscription for years. It’s a good thing I don’t have ADD because the variety of programming is so wide open. I can chill, listen to roadhouse country, octane rock, deep tracks, NASCAR, college and pro football, blue collar comedy, and every whack job on the planet has their own talk show.
But what you don’t get from satellite is the ability to reach out to help our local peeps. I’ve never heard Howard Stern raise $2,500 for the West Georgia Red Cross Chapter, like local celebrities did for our town a few weeks ago at a locally owned restaurant.
You don’t get local high school sports coverage on satellite radio. I don’t hear many local rock bands that play SoHo, Sports Rock or Flip Flops on satellite radio. We started spotlighting local music on air four years ago. There is a lot of amazing and unique talent in this market.
We play local rock bands every Friday at 5:30 p.m. on 106.9 and are actively soliciting artists to bring us their music (drop it off at 1820 Wynnton Road or send us mp3s for possible air play to firstname.lastname@example.org). It’s pretty cool that the neighbor’s kid’s drum practicing finally pays off when you hear them on the radio. Talk about a confidence builder.
That’s why I do what I do. These musicians are so grateful and humble. I can hear their excitement in the Facebook postings we read on our fanpage: http://facebook.com/ChrisChaosProductions.
You have spent a portion of your radio career as one of the highest-rated Columbus radio personalities, most recently moving up the dial to 106.9 FM. How would you characterize the local radio market, and what would you like to see change?
Aaaahhh! Listen, I’ve only been in Columbus five years in April, which translates to 35 in normal people years -- the other couple decades were spent wreaking havoc in Providence R.I., Fort Myers, Fla., Memphis, Fayetteville, N.C., Tampa, Portland, Maine and Valdosta. I moved to the “right” side of the dial because I prefer locally owned and operated radio. I would like to see fewer corporate radio stations dictating programming from 1,000 miles away, with their only goal reporting to Wall Street. In my opinion, taxpayers who live in our small communities matter most, not what the jellybean counters in their glass towers think is best.
What is your most memorable moment in local radio, and why?
Well, I’ll save most of those memories for my book when I’m gone -- LOL. There have been thousands of cool and shocking memories -- on-air weddings, crazy games, interactive contests, rock star guests where things have gone awry, funny interviews and lots of in-studio cutting up.
One story that sticks out was a morning show game I played called “psycho water splash.” Here’s how it works: We asked parents to call in who had teenage kids in the shower getting ready for school. With phone in hand, I asked the mom to fill a bucket with ice and add very cold water. She would go into the shower and dump the icecold water over the top and directly on the kid’s head. Roll tape for funny audio. They would scream “ahhhhhhhhhhh, what are you doing, mom?” “It’s for your radio station,” she would say. We would award parents and unsuspecting kids primo prizes at the end to soften the chilling experience. In one week we got 400 requests for the game. Apparently, some parents experienced some joy pulling off this prank.
What would you like to vent about?
What don’t I like to vent about? Again, another book! Let’s start with fluctuating gas prices. Why does one gas station charge 10 cents more a gallon than the guys across the street? Must be the gold flakes.
Speeding up at yellow lights and blowing through red lights. Did you know one in five licensed drivers, or about 38 million Americans, would not pass a written driver’s exam if taken today? That’s the word from the 2010 GMAC Insurance National Drivers Test.
Want more? Eighty-five percent could not identify the correct action to take when approaching a steady yellow traffic light. Seventy-three percent of drivers could not properly identify a typical safe following distance from the car in front of them. Approximately one in four admitted to distracted driving behaviors, including talking on a cell phone, eating, adjusting the radio, selecting songs on an iPod, applying makeup or reading.
Just 5 percent reported texting while driving -- probably because it’s illegal. And 25.1 percent of those living in the Northeast outright failed the exam. So, to help those and as a Chaotic public service, when you see a yellow light, SLOW DOWN and prepare to STOP!
Also, what is the deal on no beer sales in Columbus on Sunday? Hello -- NASCAR, NFL and the World Series fall on Sunday. That is my day to sit on my butt for a few hours to relax and, yes, drink a beer! Don’t drink and drive … unless you live in Phenix City?
By the way, when will the working class be able to afford BASIC health care and medicinal copays? There are a lot of my neighbors and families working two, three and four jobs, 40, 50, 60 hours a week who still can’t afford to buy medicine for their kids.
Rant No. 427: How come I can’t understand what the drive-thru intercom person is saying? First, why do they sound so angry? No health care coverage and didn’t have time to put makeup on driving to work? Do I need to teach a class of intercom announcing? Second, please STOP being cranky. We all know way too many people out of work who need a job and will be happy to say thank you, you’re welcome, yes, sir and please.
Oh yeah, on a totally different subject, I believe there should be more breast-feeding and less powdered milk. It’s healthier. Where are the good-tasting, healthy restaurants in Columbus? I’ve gained 30 pounds eating “comfort food”: barbecued and deep-fried everything. It’s not so comfy now trying to get into those 34s.
What is the best-kept secret in Columbus that you wouldn’t mind others knowing about?
The “Tune In Radio” app is free and will allow all rock music fans the chance to listen to us wherever they go, via their smartphone for 99 cents. It allows you to upgrade and record like a DVR, rewind, fast forward, pause live radio and hear the CHAOS over and over and over the other 20 hours of the day.
Oh, and AT&T still has a weak signal.