He’s one of the most eclectic radio personalities in South Africa today. As part of the 947 Breakfast Club team, Alex brightens up the day of so many South Africans on a daily basis and this week, we get up close and personal with the star and see what makes him tick.
You’ve had quite an exciting journey in radio. Where did your passion for the medium begin?
On my way to school I used to listen to the Rude Awakening with Jeremy Mansfield and that would be a little morning entertainment for me and my family. But, what I can remember more was the fact that I had an 20h00 curfew to go to bed while in school, and when I went to bed I would have a little radio that I could put on really softly next to my bed and listen to the night show with Revin John and I told myself one day I want to do exactly that – entertain people.
In the days of internet streaming and podcasting, why do you think radio is still so popular around the world?
Have you seen data charges? Kidding! Let’s start off with the misconception that terrestrial radio in South Africa is dying. It’s not! In South Africa, FM radio is still one of, if not the most, powerful mediums to get information across to the public. Yes, podcasting is becoming prevalent as well, but ask yourself what’s stopping radio stations like 947 from podcasting as well – and we have the facilities to do it. FM radio is still so popular because it’s free, live and relevant in that moment. For a podcast to be successful, in my opinion at least, it has to have some serious compelling content that stays relevant for more than just one day or week. South Africa only has a handful of those, the rest are rubbish.
We love listening to you on the 947 Breakfast Club. What, for you, is the most exciting thing about breakfast radio?
There are way too many things to list, but let’s start with the fact that I get to ‘work’ with my friends and help entertain over a million people and ensure that they have a good day at work, school or gym. Also, I’m a morning person. I wake up with a lot of energy and ready to tackle the day from an early start, so it works for my lifestyle and goals.
You’ve worked alongside Anele for a good number of years now. What’s the biggest lesson she’s taught you?
Again, too many things to list, and I’m constantly learning. What people don’t realise, is as great as Anele is, she also allows herself to constantly learn and she’s been generous enough to pass knowledge and lessons on as she learns, so I’m constantly watching and absorbing. But off the top of my head, she’s probably taught me the most about patience and timing, and when to speak and when to listen.
Being so involved in music every day, is it easier for you to spot a hit?
I like to think I can. I think when you work directly with music for over 10 years, you start to pick up trends on which songs listeners enjoy and what they could enjoy in the future. A lot of the time we as a radio station have an influence, indirectly, on what could become a hit. If I play the next Katy Perry or Justin Bieber the right amount of times before it gets irritating, and you enjoy the melody, you’ll think it’s a hit without even realising.
What do you still hope to accomplish during your radio career in the coming years?
Look the ultimate goal during any broadcaster’s career is to get great numbers, reviews and keep listeners listening for longer. For the immediate future my focus is directly on helping the rest of the 947 Breakfast Club maintain the title of the biggest and best breakfast show in Gauteng.