The Dirty Little Secrets That Keep Morning Radio Thriving in Seattle

Sir Mix-A-Lot: Baby got chat. HOT 103.7 FM

by Jake Uitti

December 2, 2017

It’s about 10 a.m. on a Monday, and Carla Marie and Anthony have just finished their four-hour morning show on Seattle FM station, POWER 93.3. But the day’s work isn’t over yet. Their producer, Hoody, has a caller on the line for the duo’s regular signature segment, “Dirty Little Secret.” The call patched into the studio is from a truck driver from Washington who has six girlfriends in six different cities around the country on his route. The titillating details might make your average person’s jaw drop, but your average person isn’t tasked with being quick-witted and chatty on a daily basis.

Peppering the man with questions (his voice will be changed after recording), the two hosts discover that his wife knows about his side women, that the two have agreed to be polyamorous, and that they even share a seventh woman as a mutual girlfriend in-state. This is one of about 300 “Dirty Little Secrets” Carla Marie and Anthony (who prefer to withhold their last names) have fielded since launching their morning show in January of 2016.

The two, who met and hit it off as friends and co-hosts working iHeartRadio’s New York-New Jersey market, moved to Seattle last year to launch their own show. Since its inception, the duo’s listenership has increased dramatically. The secret? Audience engagement. “We try to make everyone feel like they’re part of the show,” says Anthony. “When we started, we took a look at the radio landscape here and realized there just aren’t a ton of morning shows putting real listeners on the air.”

With the rise of digital media and on-demand content, terrestrial radio ratings are declining. But morning drive-time radio shows, in many ways, have remained unaffected—some even thriving despite the decline. “There are lots of different ways people approach it,” says Gregr, the longtime morning show host and biggest on-air personality at 107.7 The End. “There’s a morning show down the hall from us that has eight people on it that plays, like, three songs an hour. But we play a lot of music. That gives me a chance to deliver content a minute or two at a time that’s quick, concise, and has a purpose.”

Gregr—who bills himself as a “nerdy” host and focuses on subject matter like gadgets, Star Wars news, and other entertaining geek-out territory—says he tries to connect his audience with what’s going on in the world via short bursts of information. “Basically, my job comes down to this: How do I take my love of strange and nerdy things, and use that as a filter for all the news coming out in the world? Using the cliché nerd thing, but not making it cliché?”

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