Music Mondays continues its look into the people behind our local music scene! This week we look at an individual who loves the local community, and is someone we here at Music Mondays have come to call a friend; the incomparable Randy Perkins
Growing up Randy would play songs from the radio and record himself on cassette talking as if he was the radio DJ. Fast forward to his college days where he landed his first gig in the music industry as the Concert Coordinator for the Boise State campus. “That's where I would plan concerts from the ground up and book the bands, hire a crew, and really orchestrate every piece of putting together live shows. I was only 19 at the time and had a lot to learn, so that opportunity taught me so much about the music business at a young age.” Randy added. Later he went on to work with bands and an independent record label before he got his shot at radio. “I started as the morning show producer for The Morning After With Nic and Big J ,then transitioned over to Promotions Director for our four radio stations and at the time, two television channels. That journey brought me to where I am now with the night show and X-Clusive.” Randy concluded.
When it comes to the local scene, Randy is without a doubt a strong voice in the community. “I still remember when [Big J] came down to MC a local showcase we put together for the kickoff of the opening Boise State football game back in 2003. We put a stage right in the grass behind the north end zone where the sports complex is now. It was truly amazing when we came together at The X all these years later.” Randy said. Fast forward to Randy’s nightly show where he gets to play local music on the radio. “I'm still amazed all the time when a band sends me music and it's something unique and full of passion. The biggest compliment is when someone hears a song on the radio and says, "that was a local band?! It sounds like it should be on the radio!!" That's exactly why I put them there. They deserve it.” Randy concluded
The first local band Randy got involved with was Fly2Void. “When I was in high school, I saw them open a Free X Show with Adema and was instantly sold. That's the very moment I knew we had great talent here in our own backyard.” Randy said. He soon became friends with the band and years later Randy was in the singer’s wedding, became the band’s manager and have been lifelong friends ever since. “While they have since disbanded, I will always have so much love for those guys and credit them as the reason I got into local music.” Randy concluded.
One of the hardest things Randy faces with providing local music a voice is finding the right ways to get people to “give it a chance” as there are tons of amazing bands here, but the world at large sometimes overlooks local music. If it were not for people like Randy, local music may never reach the ears of people who do not regularly attend local concerts. “One of the biggest challenges with anything these days is cutting through the clutter to catch someone's attention. We live in a world of convenience and instant gratification. While there are so many more tools for bands to utilize these days, there's also more bands using them, so it becomes even more difficult to get the right amount of exposure.” Randy added.
Though Randy faces the ever-changing world of music, he looks towards his triumphs to keep himself focused. “While I've had this amazing opportunity to meet some of my heroes, attend countless concerts and events, etc., it's really all about the connections and memories I've made with people. When someone tells me I made their day, made them laugh (often times while making fun of myself), or even introduced them to a cool new song or artist, that means more to me than anything. That I was able to make a difference.” Another triumph Randy went on to talk about was a recent story that happened after the Free X Show with Diamante. “I met this family whose daughter loves Diamante but couldn't make the show and was having a tough time. Five minutes prior to this, Madi Knobel (lighting director at Knitting Factory) handed me the set list from the show. It only made sense to give it to this family so their daughter could have it. Those are the moments I will never take for granted.” Randy concluded.
Even though Randy has achieved one of his major goals of working in radio, he still works hard to create new goals for himself. “My biggest goal every day is to put together the best show possible and continue to learn and grow in the process. I actually get excited about meeting with my boss [Nic] to talk about how my shows are going. That's how I continue to develop and I eat it up every opportunity that comes my way.” Randy said. He also has goals to build up X-Clusive and find more ways to give local musicians even greater exposure.
As Music Mondays dove deep into the local music scene a name kept being said in the most enduring, humbling and excited ways... Randy Perkins. If you get a chance to tune into his radio show every weeknight at 8pm, his Local X Spotlight at 10pm and X-Clusive every Sundsy night, you will soon realize he is the real deal. His voice is always excited, his tone is always perfect, and he conveys stories in a way that keeps you wanting more. Randy spends hours figuring out new and exciting ways to develop the local music scene. Randy has been an inspiration to us here at Music Mondays and we truly hope this little insight into his early career, his life and goals gives you even more reason to appreciate how lucky we are to have him. From all of us here at Music Mondays, thank you Randy for what you do every day.
Message from Randy: If you're in a local band here in Idaho or the surrounding areas, please reach out via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. I'd love to check out your music.
Blog written by Aaron
Blog edited by Amanda
photo credit Aaron