You would think that after asking Garner Andrews why people voted for him as Edmonton’s Best Radio Personality in SEE Magazine, that he would reply with a string of jokes and deflections. But he is more than the funny fellow on Sonic. He is intelligent and thoughtful, and because of that people listen.
“The radio me is just a slightly more animated version of real-life me,” Andrews says. “I’m probably a little more soft-spoken in person, but the things I talk about on the radio are exactly the same things I talk about with my friends.”
Whether those things are drive-thru etiquette or feeling awkward riding your bike home with a 24- pack of toilet paper under your arm, Andrews says he gives listeners a platform to share their insecurities with others.
It also helps that he’s the kind of guy that spends a lot of time feeling awkward himself. The audience responds to that authenticity, he says.
“The radio doesn’t need yet another morning show recapping reality TV shows from the night before,” he says. “The radio needs more shows talking about the listener and that listener’s life.”
Trying to relate to people consistently can be tough. It’s not something that you can easily pump yourself up for. So Andrews finds motivation in the perks of his work place. And he’s not talking about free coffee and getting to swoon over Adam Thompson’s beautiful mug. As a lifelong music fan, Andrews used to dream of booking bands, promoting shows, and putting together a kick ass music festival. Most music fans can relate to that dream.
And Andrews gets to live that dream with the Sonic Boom festival.
“Standing around backstage having beers with the guys from USS or eating at a table with Rise Against or Weezer will never get old,” he says. “Please punch me in the throat if I ever come off sounding like I’m not blown away by the experiences that working at Sonic has given me.”
(Sonic, by the way, also won under the Best Local Radio Station category this year.)
And finally, the question that everyone wants to know — what would Garner Andrews rather have as a pet, a dragon, a hydra or a Nickelback?
“I’d go with the pet dragon,” Andrews thoughtfully concludes. “My daughters would think that’s pretty cool and it would help ease the pain of daddy never talking about them on the radio.
At the same time, I love camping, and it would be awesome to whip out a live dragon in front of my friends when they’ve all failed at getting the campfire lit. I’d be like, ‘Oh yeah — watch THIS!’”