Mushroom FM is a fun, supportive place to broadcast. We promote ourselves in innovative ways that encourage people to hear us, and most importantly, our standards in terms of audio production and presentation are very high. Right from our classy JAM jingle package to our innovative promos, Mushroom FM has become synonymous with excellence.
Every one of us is a volunteer, but we believe that this in no way allows us to produce shows of any lesser quality than if we were being paid the big bucks. We all possess a strong work ethic, and a pride in our own and the station's performance. It’s these factors that keep listeners coming back for more, and recommending us to their friends. There's not much point in putting all the hard work in if the listeners aren't there to hear it. With Mushroom FM, you become part of a well-established and popular brand, with a loyal and growing listener base.
The fact that Mushroom FM broadcasters host shows exclusively on Mushroom FM promotes a cooperative, supportive, congenial atmosphere. You won't be working on a project where a colleague one moment is a competitor the next.
Many of our broadcasters have significant broadcasting, training, and technical experience. That means you'll be part of a team who can help you develop your craft.
We have a great new broadcaster's manual that will get you up to speed quickly.
You may want to present a show that features a wide range of music from the 1950s to the 1980s, or perhaps specialize in a genre such as folk, jazz or country, and feature the music from those decades. Either kind of show is welcome here at Mushroom FM.
Show Presentation Methods
There are a number of ways in which you could be a part of the team.
Live shows are the most fun kind of radio to do, but are also the most challenging. Listeners can use email and social media to interact with your show. It’s uplifting to hear from your audience in real time. It makes it more fun for them, and it also makes it more fun for you because you're getting immediate feedback.
To broadcast live, you’ll need software to stream to our server and manage the playing of your music. Mushroom FM recommends StationPlaylist Studio if you’re a Windows user, but if you use something else that works for you, that’s fine.
However, there may be a number of reasons why you may want to become a Fun Guy and host a show that isn’t live. Maybe a slot simply isn't available that works for you at the moment. Maybe cost is a factor, or it’s all a bit technically daunting. Perhaps you'd feel happier prerecording a show to begin with, and working your way up to going live. Maybe you want to host a specialist kind of show which doesn't lend itself to a great deal of interactivity. Whatever the reason, we accept two other kinds of show in addition to live ones.
If you’ve been listening to Mushroom FM, you will have heard us make reference to the Mushroom Pot. This is our technology that handles a common method now used in radio to produce shows called voice tracking. The idea is that without having to sit through all the music that will be played, a broadcaster can record their voice breaks ahead of time, but fancy computer technology strings the voice breaks and the music together in a way that makes it sound just as if it were live. Chances are that most of the terrestrial music radio you listen to today is in fact voice tracked.
Voice tracking is a great way to get involved, because all you need is a decent microphone. We supply the software to you absolutely free, and we’ll even train you in its use. You’ll be amazed by how easy it all is to use.
Plus, even with a time commitment of just a couple of hours a week, you could conceivably host a show that airs daily.
Are you handy with your sound editor? A bit of a perfectionist and want to make sure everything is just so? We’d certainly be interested in you producing a pre-recorded show for us.
What we look for in a potential fun guy
We look for people who
- Are excellent communicators who can establish a good rapport with their audience.
- Understand, or are willing to learn, best practice in social media etiquette, including the use of hashtags.
- Have an engaging style that will encourage listener loyalty to your show.
- Are team players, able to interact maturely and cooperatively with colleagues, treat people with respect and raise concerns constructively.
- Possess excellent literacy skills with a high standard of written presentation, and the ability to follow clear instructions.
While the majority of our broadcasters happen to be blind, blindness is in no way a requirement. No discrimination here. If you can present to our kind of standards, you'd be very welcome.
How the Mushroom FM Application Process Works
The Mushroom FM application process is designed to ensure that both you and we feel we make a good fit, to make sure you present your first show in a way that maintains our high standards and shows you doing your best work. There is only one time to make a first impression after all.
The Mushroom FM Application Process consists of the following steps:
- Letter of Application and recorded demo
- Skype Interview at our discretion
- Working with a mentor
- Live Audition if you intend broadcasting live
- Voice tracking a demo hour if you intend hosting a voice tracked show
- Final decision
Letter of Application
If you wish to express an interest in Mushroom FM, send a letter of application to Mushroom FM's Station Manager, Jonathan Mosen, outlining the kind of show you are interested in presenting and why you would like to be a part of Mushroom FM. This letter of application should also include a link to a sample of your work. It can be an archive of an existing show if you currently broadcast elsewhere, or a recording you have made specifically for Mushroom FM. If you would like to host a pre-recorded show, send a sample of how it would sound on Mushroom FM. The important thing is, we need to hear what you sound like.
If we are interested in further discussing bringing you on board, you might be invited for a phone or Skype interview. The purpose of the interview is to allow us to get to know you, and to give you the opportunity to ask questions.
Working with a Mentor
If, after the interview, we believe you and Mushroom FM are a good match in principle, you will be provisionally accepted onto the station. At this point, you will be issued with a comprehensive new broadcaster's manual, and assigned a mentor. The mentor is an experienced Mushroom FM broadcaster who knows the ropes. She or he will work with you up until, and for a while after, your first Mushroom FM show.
A mentor will be assigned to meet your specific requirements. For example, if you have excellent presentation skills but are new to Internet streaming, we'll assign you someone particularly skilled in that area.
If you have reached this point, what it means is that in principle we think you may have what it takes, and are willing to invest time working with you to see if we can make it happen. But the technical and physical rigours of a live show, when listeners are contacting you and time is of the essence, are very different from those of a pre-recorded show. That's why at this point, you'll do a live audition for Mushroom FM staff. This will be on a private server, and fun guys will send you tweets, email you, requests songs of you, to simulate the live radio experience. The show will be of the same length as you expect your regular Mushroom FM show to be. We will do as many of these shows as are required to ensure to our satisfaction that you are ready for prime time.
Following the live audition process, our recruiting team will make a final decision. Remember, we're looking for a particular sound and temperament, so if the decision isn't favourable, it's not necessarily a reflection on your abilities at all, just a point of view that we may not make the best partners.
If the decision is favourable, we'll negotiate a time slot that works for you and us.
We look forward to hearing from you soon.