Kidd O'Shea juggles multimedia
Whenever asked about the future of the business he's in, Kidd O'Shea is ready to stand on the soapbox.
"Radio reaches more people than any other media," O'Shea said after finishing his morning shift at 99.1 WMYX-FM, known as The Mix here in Milwaukee. "It was something I was just reading the other day that more people listen to radio each week than watch an episode of 'American Idol.'"
The announcer/reporter/host knows how to deliver information to an audience and he does it almost every day between two gigs – the weekday morning co-host with Elizabeth Kay at The Mix, and as a reporter on weekend mornings on WISN-TV Ch. 12.
As far as TV goes, O'Shea is just as complimentary to the medium, knowing the impact that video can bring to a story.
"What I truly like is that I get to be myself and have fun," O'Shea said as the motivational reason to get up for some early morning work seven days a week. "It is exciting to be in this business and make a personal connection with people."
For O'Shea, that broadcasting bug hit early, and he got his first job working as a board operator at the then 94.5 WKTI-FM while he was still in high school. Shortly after, the opportunity opened up to host overnights at the Top 40 station.
While working for Journal Communications, he was given the opportunity to interview musical guests for the 4 p.m. newscasts on WTMJ-TV Ch. 4.
"Because I was there on those overnights, I took the time to learn how to edit (for TV)," O'Shea said. "They were wonderful to give me that opportunity and I learned a lot there."
When the opportunity arose to join Jane Matenaer (now at B93.3) at WMYX, O'Shea wasn't under contract at WKTI, and jumped at the chance to be a part of a morning show. At the same time, he found a TV broadcast home at Channel 12.
While he is far from the first or only person working on two mediums in the market, his experiences have given him a unique look at what is going on in Wisconsin.
"I've been very fortunate to work in my hometown, near my family," O'Shea said. "I love summers here in Milwaukee and there's no other place like it. Milwaukee is a great place to live and work. I get to travel a lot and (in other places) people are not passionate like they are here. We have real people. Honest to goodness, real people, and you just don't find that in other parts of the country."
As far as the future is concerned, O'Shea is enjoying the work he's doing now, but welcomes the opportunity to grow his role at WISN-TV. And he wants to continue to connect with people on The Mix.
"The challenge (for radio) is to deliver content other than just on FM. The web is saturated with options for music, so you have to deliver stand-out content on different forms," he said about the need to grow with a younger audience.
But, as he points out, that local radio and TV still endure. "People want that personal connection," he said.
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""What I truly like is that I get to be myself and have fun," said Kidd O'Shea, (not his real name).
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