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Rocking the X Boat

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KQXR 100.3 The X is working on becoming a station of the people. Station program director and morning show DJ Jeremy "Nic" Nicolato had a part-time DJ position to fill. He and morning co-host Jeremi "Big J" Smith thought about ways to bring in a new member of the Journal Broadcast family. Smith has always been candid about his own non-traditional career path in radio. He hadn't gone to school to be a DJ, but really wanted to work in radio, so he hung around the station and bugged the powers that be until they gave him a job. He and his co-host thought they should offer that kind of opportunity to other on-air wannabes. So they announced that they were looking for someone to fill the Sunday noon-6 p.m. on-air time slot. Anyone and everyone was eligible. They received more than 700 e-mails.

Those 700 were narrowed down to 10, based on criteria both tangible and not so. Previous radio experience was certainly taken into consideration, but Nicolato and Smith were searching for something more.

"We looked at their applications to see if they sent in something really funny or crazy," Smith said. "Something that got our attention."

Damon Bradshaw made the cut by admitting that he used to hop freight trains as a kid and was once sued on Judge Judy; Monica Bowman made it because on her application, she suggested "the radio station is a giant testosterone ocean and they need an estrogen cruise ship."

But novelty wasn't enough.

"We also looked for people who had passion," Nicolato said.

Then came the real test: they brought each of the 10 in for an on-air interview.

"We really wanted to put them in a pressure-cooker situation," Nicolato said laughing. "Nobody bombed."

Once everyone had been grilled, 100.3 listeners were asked to vote on their favorite.

"We wanted to expand our listener community and get someone they really wanted to hear," Nicolato said.

Last Friday, Nicolato and Smith announced that the winner of the, ahem, coveted Sunday midday spot is Adam McGuire with 21 percent of the votes.

To listen to a podcast of McGuire's on-air interview podcast, visit xrock.com.