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QUESTION: I have been doing mornings here for four years and am ready for the challenge of a bigger market. What is standard length for a morning show demo? Mine currently runs 5:30, but I'd like to add a news/sportscast on the end to increase my marketability as a co-host. How long is too long? Also, how much of it should include the basics (wx, promo, etc.)? Will a PD assume you can handle them or you wouldn't be in AM drive?

DAN REPLIES: I'd suggest you put the news/sportscast on the flip side of your cassette (using a short enough tape that the PD can just flip it over and begin playing Side 2 without rewinding).

Morning show demo tend to run longer than other day parts, because most morning shows are much more talk-intensive. 5:30 isn't too long if each element you include is unique - i.e., doesn't replicate another segment of your tape. One song parody, one interview excerpt, one phoner, etc. Although it might sound like just a sample hour of your show, in reality you should select each segment for a very specific reason: tos how off your comedy, your basics, your ad-libbing, your flow, etc.

The same rule applies to basics: Let the PD hear you do one each of several different basics (song intro, weather, liner, etc.).

Our audio seminar, Career Control: Radio Job-Hunting, Interviewing & Contracts covers demo tapes in depth, as well as virtually all other aspects of moving up to your next gig.

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