They have massive morning ratings, a podcast that averages 10,000 downloads daily, and KVJ TV.
KVJ – Kevin, Virginia & Jason, WRMF West Palm Beach generate some of the most innovative content in North America.
Find out how three people who had never met formed a team that clicked instantly, and what story lines and stunts drive their #1 morning ratings.
Randy: Kevin and Virginia, how did you two meet and start working together?
Kevin: We met through Scott Sands, who Virginia worked with in Biloxi. I was hired from Kansas City to work in West Palm. I was looking for a co-host, and Virginia was at the top of the list. We were on the phone together for, like, two hours. We clicked. We had the same ideas about what we wanted in a radio show. I knew that she was the person I wanted to work with; she’s naturally funny, spicy, has an interesting life, beautiful…
Virginia: Yes, yes… I am all those things, and so much more.
Randy: Virginia, did you have any reservations when you talked with Kevin?
Virginia: No. We immediately hit it off.
Randy: Did you click right away on the air, or did it take some time to develop the chemistry?
Kevin: I think we clicked right away. The struggles we had when we first started had to do with the coaching that we were getting. We felt good about what we were doing on the air, but the programmer at the time did not.
Virginia: We were a team though. We always had each other’s back; it was the same fun chemistry that we are lucky enough to still have today.
Randy: How did Jason join the show?
Kevin: Virginia and I were on the air for 5 years. We did an on-air search to fill the third position. We turned the search into a contest that lasted several weeks. We had 5 guys try out for it, and it was clear early on that Jason was the right fit. He was a very talented, funny guy who could write songs, play guitar, and was good doing street stunts. Most importantly, he clicked with our sense of humor.
Randy: Were you specifically looking for someone to add the street element to the show?
Kevin: Yes. I had grown up as a producer, and I’d been the street monkey, stunt boy. I liked being out there, doing the in-your-face stuff. That was a big element for our show. So yes, having someone that could do that, and do it well, was preferred.
Randy: Jason, has anything changed about doing stunts, whether it’s on the streets or on video, since you first started with Kevin and Virginia?
Jason: Today I’m more afraid of getting sued. We used to do a bit called Smell my Finger, where I put my finger in some weird substance, and then went up to strangers and asked, “Hey! What’s my finger smell like?” We could never do a bit like that today.
Randy: What recent stunts have had great responses?
Jason: I went out and started smoking out of a bong. I went up to people to see if they would take a hit from a stranger. We got good reaction from that.
Kevin: That was when the measure for legalizing marijuana was on the ballot; the first time, when it didn’t pass here in Florida. It passed in the last election.
Jason: Doing stunts with clients works, too. For example, we just got a Buds Chicken and Seafood endorsement. They’re going to allow us to do some pranks with Aunt Ann. You can still do crazy stuff, if you have management’s blessing.
Randy: And for our readers, Aunt Ann is your aunt, and she’s also one of the reoccurring characters on the show, correct?
Jason: Yes, I would say she’s like the fifth member of the KVJ show.
Kevin: I want to throw out one more thing on stunts. Facebook Live is new to us. We have two kinds of stunts. The bong stunt was an off-air bit. We played a little bit of the audio on the air, but mainly it was created for our YouTube channel. We’re doing lots of stunts on FB Live, and it’s getting a great reaction.
This week we did a spoof on the mannequin challenge. Jason went into a doughnut shop, and when he went up to order, he had to freeze for 5 minutes. When the waiter said, “Can I help you?” Jason said, “Yeah, I’ll take…” and then froze. It got a weird and hilarious reaction from the waiter and the people in line. And we captured it on Facebook Live.
We did another one last week called ‘Risk my Car. We all do this through a bit called ‘Sudden Death.’ Whoever draws the lowest playing card must do the challenge. When Jason lost last week, we took his truck out to an area where there’s a lot of car theft, and he had to leave it running with the door open for 10 minutes.
Randy: I love that!
Jason: Talk about serial content! The way it worked out, we had material for 4 solid days.
Kevin: Someone hopped in the truck and took off in it. Our intern was trying to FB Live it, and the camera work was sketchy, so we couldn’t get a good make on who took the truck. That became an ongoing saga as we put out an APB to find Jason’s truck. It turned up 4-5 days later in another complex.
Randy: You mentioned serial content and story lines. How important are they for ratings?
Kevin: It’s a big deal, because it keeps people tuning in. We do a thing called KVJ Court. When people have problems or disagreements, they call in, and we discuss it.
We call people back for updates, and a lot of our audience will ask, “Hey, whatever happened to the person who did _______?” It’s a big part of what we do.
We always have 2-3 good story lines that are developing and changing on the show.