By Sabina Longo
Talk 1300 Radio host Paul Vandenburgh visited Hudson Valley to speak about his life in the Capital Region and his journey in the world of radio, touching on the technological advances the world of AM radio has experienced.
After attending Hudson Valley, Vandenburgh transferred to Siena College and graduated in 1987 with a bachelor’s degree in business administration. He is now a host on Talk 1300 Radio with a segment every morning from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m.
Vandenburgh’s has established himself in the Capital Region after working in the radio industry for over 20 years.
But 58-year-old Vandenburgh wasn’t always successful. He grew up in the Corliss Park Apartments in Lansingburgh and struggled with many personal problems.
“When I was 18, 19, 20, I can honestly tell you the priorities in my life were Schlitz and Old Gold cigarettes. I got to a point in my life that was so bad I had to stop,” said Vandenburgh.
A year before graduating from Siena, Vandenburgh got his first part time job at the radio station formerly known as WWCN. When that company went out of business, he worked as an overnight board operator and a weekend talk show host at WQBK (103.9 FM).
“I was fortunate enough to get a call from a competing radio station who asked me if I would think about working over there, which I did. I developed much more of a passion for this 25 years ago,” said Vandenburgh.
His career didn’t take off until 1994 when he was promoted to the morning show host at WQBK.
Vandenburgh was a former host of “The Morning Line,” a horse racing television show on OTB Network and WGY (810 AM). He was also a former program director and morning host for WROW (590 AM).
He became president and general manager of Capital Broadcasting Inc. in 2007 when he bought the company.
“Today, for the first time, I did my show on wi-fi [and] nobody knew it. I didn’t say anything until it was over with. It worked out great,” said Vandenburgh.
Vandenburgh now buys equipment that allows him to do remote broadcasting radio shows outside of the traditional studio. The equipment gets plugged into an Internet wire and the show can be broadcasted from various locations.
“It seems a lot of young people are listening to iHeartRadio, Pandora or using an iPod and not listening to radio anymore. [The AM radio world now] is get out, be in front of people, meet clients and do programs with them,” said Vandenburgh on the changes that the AM radio world is seeing.
“One thing I like to tell young people is try and make up your mind early and give yourself some idea of what you want to do,” said Vandenburgh. “It is important that you don’t waste a lot of days.”