ABOVE PHOTO: Brittney O’Rouke
By Kiarra Solomon
Brittney O’Rourke is the new host of WWDB 860am’s Music Talk. O’Rourke, who found her way to Philadelphia radio earlier this year, is originally from Nashville, TN. The story of her arrival reveals a fearless dream chaser who is on her way to proving that she can hold her own among the heavy radio competitions in the City of Brotherly Love. O’Rourke moved to Philadelphia, with no friends or family, when she was offered a position with a local modeling agency. After about three months in that job, she decided it wasn’t working out, and quit. “I had no plan”, she says, “But I knew I couldn’t stay there. So I quit. I was literally was living in a hotel off my savings.”
Not long after abruptly leaving that position, the former model/actor/hip-hop artist had a meeting with the WWDB’s programming director, Joe Ball. O’Rourke was immediately offered a position with the station, hosting Music Talk, a 30 minute talk radio show about the business side of radio, music and the entertainment world. The radio talk show, which was re-launched in July just for O’Rourke, is already boasting big name guests from the business such as Bunny Sigler, (songwriter and producer who worked with the Gamble and Huff Team during the early 70s) and Lloyd Remick (well -known Philadelphia entertainment lawyer).
“There’s always so much knowledge being dropped during the show”, says Brittney. According to its host, the goal of Music Talk is to educate listeners about what happens behind the music. Discussions so far have included the differences between (and benefits of) having a distribution deal versus a record deal, the many changes of the music, radio, and entertainment industries have changed, and much more.
“Whenever I talk to someone after the show I want to know what they’ve learned, what they took away from the show. I think that’s the biggest difference between my show and any other radio show”, says O’Rourke.
While Brittney does not hold a degree in Broadcasting, Communications, or the like, she has learned the industry through hands-on experience, opting to take “the road less travelled.”
“I enrolled in college as an English major because I wanted to be a hip-hop journalist”, O’Rourke says, “but I was working in the industry at the time as an artist, and it became a struggle, so I had to make a choice. College wasn’t teaching me some of the things I needed to learn. I’m not bashing education, but I am saying that college isn’t for everyone. And it’s important to know what works for you.”
Fast forward a few years, a few bumps and bruises, a few lessons learned today, and O’Rourke seems to have finally found her spot, for now. “It was destiny”, she says, “but I still have goals, there are other things that I still want to accomplish. This is just a launching pad for me.”
In addition to hosting ‘Music Talk’, Brittney also produces two other shows on WWDB, and works as motivational speaker and event host.
Upcoming guests on ‘Music Talk’ include singer/songwriter Carol Riddick, and the City of Philadelphia’s former City Representative and major event planner, Melanie Johnson.
Brittney says she wants her listeners to “learn that it really is levels to this.” “If a person is serious about being in the entertainment industry then they should be listening to this show.”
Music Talk airs on WWDB 860am on Thursday’s at 1PM and replays throughout the week at various times. You can also listen to Music Talk, and WWDB’s other shows by visiting their website at www.wwdbam.com.
Follow Brittney on Twitter @BrittneyORourke.