John's Open Road


    Northern Route


    Seattle, WA


    Public Television: Season 2

  • ON DVD:


Radio DJ
KEXP, Seattle, WA

“However much you think you may not be able to achieve something, try it, ask someone about it…as long as you're talking to people that's totally going to help you.”


Music Radio


Hard Work Passion Community


advice, communication, disc jockey, DJ, enthusiastic, frustration, ideas, intern, internship, obsessive, sacrifice, talk to people, work for free


From his hometown of Spokane, Washington, a young John Richards could feel the excitement of the Seattle music scene just 300 miles away. When he was 20, John headed off to Seattle with no clue about what he wanted to do with his life. He began taking classes at the University of Washington, but soon became much more interested in the public radio station located on campus. Hoping to break into the radio business, John walked up to the station and offered to do any type of work for them—for free. And though volunteering at the station while working another job and attending school made those first few years tough, John recommends the experience for young people trying to break into a new career. These days John works for the same station (now known as KEXP), hosting a weekday morning show that keeps its listeners supplied with the latest music coming across Seattle's airwaves. And though his job requires him to be on the air at 6am Monday through Friday, his love of music makes it worth the sacrifice.

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