By Renee Dominguez
Host and Photojournalist
Whether you were the “guys” in Alex and Geronimo’s, “What’s up, guys,” or the “everybody” in DJ Rose and DJ Helenbrook’s, “What’s up, everybody,” you knew you were listening to Other Side Drive. Every week day from 4-6 p.m., KTSW’s drive time show provided insightful commentary, entertaining and sometimes unpredictable interviews, live on-air performances, and exclusive giveaways. Luckily, the wonderful, mostly first time, Other Side Drive hosts tackled all that good stuff. Let’s take a look back at the DJ’s favorite on-air moments, favorite part about being an Other Side Drive host, and what they are up to next semester.
No one likes Mondays, but Blayne Turner and Kyndal Runnels always kicked off the week with high spirits. With the help of their social media contributor, Andrew Wright, the show managed to make Mondays feel less dreadful. “It’s fun, and it’s work, but it doesn’t feel like a job,” Runnels said. Turner and Runnels’ first interview together of the fall semester was with the Austin-native band, Blushing. “It was really fun and didn’t feel forced,” Runnels said about the interview. It’s no wonder both DJs answered that interviewing “cool people” was their favorite part about being an Other Side Drive host. Runnels will return to KTSW next semester as a member of the Sports and Multimedia departments. Turner will graduate in December and be in search of a job. Perhaps as a radio host?
“And we are back!” Tuesday’s airwaves would hear Christian Haddad’s excited welcome back call with the help of his co-host, Rebecca Frazier. Frazier and Haddad started off day one has a powerhouse duo. They provided fun banter, and with the help of their social media contributor, Megan Ho, the most animated photos on Twitter. Frazier’s favorite Other Side Drive memory? “The Austin Pride President interview and 36’’ Wheels were both really fun and energetic,” Frazier said. “Both had good vibes!” Frazier will be focusing more on her specialty show, Baby Rollercoaster, that airs on KTSW-FM 89.9.
Hump day was relieved by Blayne Turner (again!) and Chase Massey. With the help of their social media contributor, Georgie Munoz, the only day to house a bromance debuted the first ever on-air Studio C performance. The performance was with the San Marcos-native band, Stoop Queens. Turner and Massey also sat down with Maverick from Austin Ghost Tours, which provided the duo with their favorite Other Side Drive memory. “I loved hearing all the ghost stories on air. It was cool to hear something different on our airways,” Massey said. Massey will be returning as Assistant Director for Other Side Drive, as well as an on-air host.
DeAnna Ryan and Haley Helenbrook, or better know as DJ Rose and DJ Helenbrook took over the studio on Thursdays. With Helenbrook’s fiery spirit, Ryan’s bubbly personality, and the help of social media contributor, Holly Hearn, Thursday’s were controlled by the ladies. “Having the ability to come into the studio once a week and spend time with DeAnna,” Helenbrook said about her favorite part of being an Other Side Drive host. “The first time I did emoji hearts on my notes and Haley called me out on air,” Ryan said about her favorite on air memory. Whether it was sisterly love or playful mocking, the ladies produced fun interviews and created a lasting friendship. Catch Helenbrook as Director of Community Relations and Ryan as Community Outreach Coordinator next semester. Both will also be returning as Other Side Drive hosts.
Often referred to as “FriYay” on Twitter, Fridays were spent with Alexandra Sereno and Geronimo Perez. Captured through the help of their social media contributor, Claire Hansen, Sereno and Perez kicked off the semester with an interview with San Marcos-native band, The Cold Tony’s. Sereno’s first semester as Other Side Drive host put her in a challenging situation that resulted in her favorite on-air memory. “One of our interviewees had cursed on air once and I had to handle it,” Sereno said. “(It was) definitely the most laughable moment.” Perez made sure to always keep things interesting to keep listener’s entertained. “I had fun doing all the stop downs,” Perez said about his favorite on-air memory. “They weren’t your average stop downs.” They will both be returning to the KTSW family next year.
As for the director of Other Side Drive? Kimberly Clay made sure everything ran as smoothly as possible. Whether that meant calling to confirm interviews, calling ticket winners, or even jumping in as occasional host, she proved she could do it all. Clay had this to say about Other Side Drive this semester:
“This year, the Other Side Drive staff has gone above and beyond and have put a lot of hard work and dedication into their performances as on-air hosts. We’ve had lots of great moments during interviews with people like Paul Huddleston, president of the Austin Pride festival, and community organizations like the Inside Books Project. We’ve had great local bands come in for interviews and some have done live Studio C sessions with us. My favorite parts of running Other Side Drive are hearing songs requested by listeners, doing ticket giveaways, which is really fun because I get to celebrate that moment with the listeners who win the tickets, and our All Staff meetings where I can talk about the great work my staff has done. It has been a very busy and very fun semester and there is so much more to come in the spring.”
Other Side Drive will return to airwaves in January 2018. In the meantime, be sure to follow Other Side Drive on Twitter @drive899.
All images by KTSW Social Media.