Disk jockeys are radio announcers. They announce station program information, such as program schedules and commerical breaks. Disk jockeys announce music selections and may decide what music to play. While on the air, they comment on the music, weather, and traffic. They may take requests from listeners, interview guests, and manage listener contests. There is a lot of preparation and research the disk jockey must do before going on the air.
Disk jockeys work different hours, depending on their experience and the station's needs. The early morning timeslot is usually the most desirable in radio.
Earnings in broadcasting vary widely but in general are very low except for disc jockeys in large stations in major markets or disk jockeys whose shows are syndicated. The middle 50 percent of disc jockeys earn between $6.17 and $12.76 per hour.
Helpful Skills and Subjects to Study
Disc jockeys must have a pleasant and well-controlled voice, good timing, excellent pronunciation, and must use correct grammar. Courses in English, public speaking, drama and foreign languages are helpful.
Others who must be skilled at oral communication include interpreters, sales workers, public relations specialists and teachers.
Education & Training
Formal training in broadcasting from a college or technical school is valuable. Station officials pay particular attention to taped auditions that show an applicant's delivery. Disc jockeys usually begin at a station in a small community.
Competition for jobs as disc jockeys will be keen as the broadcasting field attracts many more jobseekers than there are jobs.
Sources for Additional Information
National Association of Broadcasters
1771 N Street, NW
Washington, DC 20036