|What does a disk jockey do?
Disc jockeys, sometimes called "deejays," put music on the radio.
They also talk about the news, sports, and weather. Sometimes
they do commercials, talk with guests, and tell what's going on
in the community.
Disc jockeys most often work at radio stations. They work in
small rooms called studios. These rooms have good light, air-conditioning,
and are soundproof. But it can be lonely. Full-time Disc jockeys
talk on the radio 5 or 6 days a week for about 4 hours at a time.
However, their job takes more time than just that. Every day they
must prepare for the radio show. Sometimes they write the commercials,
Most radio stations are on the air much of the day. Some stations
are on for 24 hours every day. Because of this, Disc jockeys don't
usually work regular hours. They often must start early or work
late into the night. They also must get to work, even if the weather
is very bad. Disc jockeys may also work outside the station. They
can work at schools or community events. Some do extra work at
weddings and parties.
|How do you get ready to be a disk jockey?
It is very difficult to get a job as a disc jockey. Classes in
broadcast journalism at a college or technical school may help.
Courses in English, public speaking, and drama are also good.
Students can gain experience at school stations. Hobbies such
as sports and music may help. However, most employers want to
know how someone sounds on a taped audition. They pay a lot of
attention to a person's way of talking. They want someone with
a pleasant voice and good timing. They want a disc jockey that
will do commercials, news, and interviews with a nice style.
It is very important that a disc jockey can "ad-lib" (that means
to talk without notes) all or part of the program. They must work
under tight deadlines and may have to be computer literate.
Beginners often must start out in another radio job. They may
work equipment or tape interviews. The best chance for a disc
jockey job is at a small station.
|How much does a disk jockey get paid?
Earnings are higher in larger cities than in small ones. The
middle half of all announcers earned between $7.13 and $15.10
an hour in 2002. The lowest-paid 10 percent earned less than $6.14.
The highest-paid 10 percent made more than $24.92 an hour. Some
Disc jockeys earn much more.
Announcers, the group of workers that includes Disc jockeys,
held about 76,000 jobs in 2002.
There is a lot of competition for these jobs. Many more people
try to be Disc jockeys than there are jobs. Small radio stations
are more inclined to hire beginners, but the pay is low. People
who get work experience by completing an internship while in school
have the best chance of getting a job.
The number of announcers is expected to decline through the year
2012. This is due partly to the lack of growth in the number of
radio and television stations. Now, more than ever, several stations
may be operated from one central office. This reduces the need
for staff. Some stations operate overnight without any staff.
They play programming that was recorded earlier or that comes
from a satellite feed. Also, new technology is increasing the
productivity of announcers, reducing the number of announcers
that are needed.
However, there will be job openings in this small field. This
is due to the need to replace those who leave. Some leave this
job because they can't advance to better paying jobs.
|Are there other jobs like this?
- Interpreters and translators
- Public relations specialists
- Sales and related occupations
|Where can you find more information?
More BLS information about announcers and similar jobs can be
found in the Careers Database.
Occupational Outlook Handbook -- U.S. Department of Labor Bureau
of Labor Statistics