Monday, February 13, 2012


Written By: LM

Close to the end of last week, Josh Innes (SR610) announced Sports Radio 610 re-up his contract.  Yes kids, Josh Innes for an additional 2 years.  As I listened to Josh make the soft announcement, a couple of things came to mind.  For some reason I thought Josh had already been extended being that I met him his first week in Houston during the Texans vs Titans in November of 2009.  I figured once he got passed November, it was a done deal.  That's a slip on my part for not following up and inquiring about his contractual situation.

The other thing that came to mind, he made it through.  When I say "made it" I mean I have never seen a new personality take as much heat from callers, peers and in some cases coworkers than Josh.  When I am out and about and I bump into a fan of 610 and we begin talking, one of the first questions I am asked "so what you think about that Josh Innes".  They leave the question open, almost to feel me out and when I speak about his talent, I typically get a "Yea, but" and they light into him.

I am happy for Josh because he could have tucked tail and ran but he stuck it out.  I am sure seeing the numbers from a winning Houston Texans was an incentive.  I mean if I am Josh and I am looking at record numbers on my show with the assistance of the Texans rising and the the AFC South in shambles, I would factor that into my decision.  There is a common incomplete sentence we all make when talking about the Texans and Sports Radio 610 and I was just guilty of it; as quick as it was for me to say 610 benefited from the Texans winning, the truth of the matter is, all four stations benefit to a degree of a good Texans.  However, I do feel Sports Radio 610 may get the most bang for the buck because they are the Flagship station.

Upon learning about Josh's contract, I asked him a few questions.  Shot the questions to Josh and in his "open door" fashion, he promptly responded and asked if I had more questions.  Below are my questions to Josh Innes.


Wanted to touch basis with on your new two year contract and what it means for J&R Experience moving forward.  First off, congratulation on being the number one sports talk show in Houston as defined by the ratings.  I think the show is doing well, I do not agree with all topics and content on the show but I listen.  Over the last year, the phrase “real talk” has become somewhat of a catch phrase for the J&R Show and with that said, I wanted to ask you a few real questions.
1.In a strange way your contract situation is similar to Mario Williams.  Like Mario you are very polarizing,  I would say half like/dislike you.  With the constant negativity, how in the hell did you make the decision to stay in Houston. 

Answer: I like it here. I think it's a great place to live. The station wanted me here. I didn't see any other openings that were as good as this one. I also like working with my boss. We disagree on a lot of things but he's a good PD. 

2. I have listen to you grow from your first week in Houston with “squeal like a pig” to informative questions to big time guest and the ability to rock a five hour show.  At what point of your career in Houston, you felt you had to change some things?

Answer: I never felt like I had to change a lot. The things I do now are the things I've always done. In the past I was doing one hour. It's hard to develop any type of flow in a one hour show. I did know that going into the PM Drive slot I would have to change a little. Maybe be a little more mainstream with stuff I did. I didn't have guests on the one hour show b/c I didn't really have time. Hell, today I played Deliverance music. My squeal like a pig days are not a thing of the past. 

3. I have been listening to Drive Time Radio for a long time.  I have heard Rich Lord with a slew of hosts and frankly I am a bit surprised the success of J&R.  I thought Matt and Rich Drive Time Players was the optimal and couldn’t be top but I was wrong,.  Of course, Matt was following Marc Vandermeer and you followed Robert Henslee which put you in a whole in my opinion.  I say all of that to ask, with the ratings hovering around the 4-6 and most of your Pop and Hip Hop stations locally are flirting with 6-9, are your sites set on being the best in your genre or Houston radio period?

Answer: We want to have the best ratings in Houston. We know we will never pull giant ratings in the 12+ ratings demo. It's not going to happen. We do think we can become an elite player in Men 25-54 and we are doing that. Throughout football season we have been consistently pulling 5's and 6's. Those 5's and 6's have us ranked in the top 7 for the fall book. Thats solid. The morning show is doing the same thing. I want to have the top rated show in the city. I also understand that sports is a niche format and we are on the AM band. If this station were on FM I think would could be even more lethal. 

4. Any plans on increasing your sports knowledge?

Answer: You can always be more informed. I am not going to plead my case to you about my sports knowledge. I think you can listen and know that I know of which I speak. If I don't know something, I tell you. I am not a phony. What else would you like me to learn?

5. Recently, you mention you had an interest in Stand Up Comedy.  Have you conversed with John Wessling?  Any chance CBS could provide you a solo slot where you can do a “Stern” type of show?

Answer: I don't think John is funny so no. I don't know if we have any slots available to do a different type of show. I'd like to do it at some point but I'm not really focused on that right now. 

6. Do you regret anything said about Houston Sports?
Answer: No. 

7. What’s your highest and lowest point at SR 610?

Answer: I don't really focus on the highs. I'm a weird cat. I don't remember a lot of the good stuff I do. I'd say that getting to do national radio 8 times has been a high point. Getting promoted a year into my contract was a high. I had a bad stretch towards the end of 2011. I wasn't a good guy. I really battled with my PD. I could have gotten fired. I was told I was close to being canned. It wasn't a good time. 

8. Should Josh Innes fans expect changes in JR?  I am not talking radical  but do you have ideas you want to bring to the show? Is the 1980s Birthday segment hear to stay?

Answer: The show evolves everyday. I don't have grand plans for the show. The show just sort of happens. Many of the ideas for segments come up organically. I have no elaborate plans for the show. As long as the show is real and doesn't become an overly corporate, contrived  show then I'm happy. Birthdays is Rich's baby. It's not going anywhere. 

9. I am not a fan of playing the victim.  I truly despise the whole “everybody hates me”.  Do you feel that’s incorporated in your diversion of negativity?

Answer: Yes. I don't use that as much anymore. It used to be a regular part of the show. Now I take it in stride and laugh with it. It took me a while to learn how to not take the negativity so serious. If you listen to the show you see that we have fun with it now. 

10. Out of curiosity, J&R are seeing record numbers which means people like you and the show.  Various forms of communication is such a small portion of the population.  Why shrug your fans off with a “thanks” but devote a whole segment to those who say they hate you?  

Answer: I'll quote Barry Champlain in "Talk Radio"..."There is nothing more boring than people that love you". There is no conflict in compliments. There is no passion in compliments. Hatred produces passion and passion produces good radio. 

11. As stated earlier, we are keeping it real.  What are your plans on removing the “gay” adjective associated with your brand some like to use when attacking you?  Hell is it even an issue to you? 

Answer: I don't care. I find it funny that it makes so many people uncomfortable. Sometimes I exaggerate some of the things I say just to irk a small faction of the audience that thinks I'm gay. I like to make those people uncomfortable. I'm not going to change anything I do. I am who I am.

12. Have you learned anything from Rich Lord to help your career?

Answer. I'd say the people I've learned the most from in Houston are Vandermeer and Gavin.


I like to thank Josh Innes for taking the time to answer a few questions.   Congratulations Josh on your contract and keep on doing what you do.

It's funny how I knock Sports Radio 610 for being one of the most closed societies, but pound for pound they have some of the most candid personalities:  Barry Warner, ND Kalu and Josh Innes.




Jose Contaras said...

Well it looks like I wont be listening to SR610 in the afternoon for two more years. I cant believe they re-upped this clown.

WhiteGreg said...

I am so disappointed that they reupped this clown. It's strange that when a station gets really successful they eventually depart from the thing that made them great. 610 is not much of a sports station anymore. They BS more than anything else. Retard radio is on the air with Josh Innes...

Earlis said...

lol...the king of soft shock huh...did say the people that can fugg offf they don't make good me he is just another white boy in a black hat..but...i gotta give him props..but hey compared to what...Houston sportstalk radio..give me a break..actually though I have been listening to 1560 at nite...I had been a sportstalk drop out minus Ralp Cooper..but i have tuned in quite a bit here of late ..