Mike Ryan


Mike Ryan

Mike Ryan spins at the Corvette Diner in San Diego. He also invented the Air-Powered speaker stand the FRANKENSTAND. He is a 20-year veteran of radio, and served on ADJA and NACE boards.




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Keep On Trucking?

June 16, 2017 by Mike Ryan
In the movie Forrest Gump the title character says (shortening the common phrase), “It happens!” Well, “it” happened to me back in March, while traveling to and from Las Vegas to exhibit at the Mobile Beat show with my company, Frankenstand. I rented a 24-foot Penske cargo truck, this being the “smallest” truck with a lift gate for moving pallets. After loading my show product, I headed to Los Angeles to pick up three pallets of Wade Novin’s speakers for his Novin Audio booth and continued my trip to Sin City and the Tropicana hotel-casino. Halfway throug... [read more]
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Driven to Mobile DJ (and Photo Booth) Success

May 24, 2017 by Mike Ryan
Stephanie Crooks is a DJ and photo booth operator, and to say she is also a dynamo is an understatement. When I contacted her for an interview, she got back to me with answers to my questions within a few hours—by far the fasted turnaround for all the pieces I written. The driving force behind Stephanie Crooks Premium Soundz DJ Service in Pittsburgh, PA is an inspiration, proving that we can accomplish much if we put real energy behind our creative ideas and dreams. Mike Ryan: You started DJing in the 11th grade, did your first Wedding in your senior year and today you do close to 50 weddings annually. Sounds like you have the energy ... [read more]
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DJ with Double Vision

December 2, 2016 by Mike Ryan
Using top-of-the-line sound equipment won’t automatically make you a great DJ...but it sure would be fun. Tom Capo of KPODJ literally gets his pick of the best pro audio products our industry has to offer. But don’t be jealous; it wasn’t just handed to him on a silver record platter. He’s been working hard building his screen-shot-2016-11-29-at-12-51-26-pmMobile DJ and retail businesses since he was 14-year- old. Capo shares his unique insight into our industry. Mike Ryan: You started your Mobile DJ business as a teenager. That’s not that unusual these days but before you were an adult you actually had a thriving ret... [read more]
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The “Vintage” DJ

October 17, 2016 by Mike Ryan
Wirginia Szmyt is a DJ. She plays salsa, rumba and disco for seniors in Warsaw, Poland. At 77 years old she has been considered by many to be the oldest DJ alive. Not anymore: DJ Robert Wilson of Phoenix, Arizona is 82 years old! And not only is he older, this “vintage” DJ does between 75 and 90 events a year for all age groups. The following interview with Wilson should encourage any DJ who thinks they’re past their prime to hang in there.174-26-27 Mike Ryan: How long have you been DJing and what was your “real” job before you started spinning tunes? Robert Wilson: I was a trainman in Canada for the Canadian National Railway and the Britis... [read more]
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Lessons from the Musical Zoo

June 20, 2016 by Mike Ryan
SUNDAY, JANUARY 17, 2016. As I write this article it’s the weekend of the final eight NFL teams sushi-mikeryanfighting their way to the Big Game. Thirty six years ago, in San Diego, CA, newly hired radio program director John Lander used the game analogy in his pep talk to several highly experienced disc jockeys, stating that everything we did on the air at 13KGB had to be perfect. We might not win the Superbowl but we wanted to be in the playoffs. Six months later we were definitely in the hunt, on our way to dominating a number of ratings segments. It was a blast! I’ve waited three decades to pick Lander’s brains about his programming acumen, skills... [read more]
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Capturing the Action – By Mike “Dr. Frankenstand” Ryan

October 23, 2013 by Mike Ryan

PRACTICAL ADVICE FOR WORKING WITH PHOTOGRAPHERS

If you think mobile DJs have challenges with weddings, compared to mb152_059photographers, DJs have the flexibility of a contortionist. The following interview with wedding shutterbug Laura Christin of Laura Christin Photography in San Diego focuses in on ways we DJs can make the photographer’s job easier and at the same time develop a lasting business relationship. Despite my personal dislike of most wedding planners and in particular the “day-of” variety, I like wedding photographers. They can be ... [read more]
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Party Car Drives the Fun By Mike Ryan

September 15, 2013 by Mike Ryan
Since mobile DJs are “mobile” (they drive to the gig with gear in tow) and “DJs” (they play music for people on big sound systems), it's inevitable that some of them would combine vehicles and performance gear in some creatively alternative ways. We’ve seen converted ambulances, exotic custom DJ cars like those of Charles Miles of Mix on Wheels (profiled in MB back in Nov. 2012), a VW Bus mobile DJ “station” with snow tracks for the ski slopes, even the cartoonish Ultimate Party Car at Disneyland’s Cars Land. But you’ve probably never seen a DJ rig quite like the one that DJ Kevin Burford of Visalia, California rocks at many a week-day event.mb151_081read more]
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What’s in Your Library? – By Mike “Dr. Frankenstand” Ryan

May 27, 2013 by Mike Ryan
LibraryIf you take all the music in the world and throw away every song not related to weddings, and then take those songs left over and throw away the ones that aren’t danceable, you’ll still have a supercomputer’s hard drive worth of music. Just how much music are we talking about? The largest source of music and video metadata on the planet, Gracenote, shows more than 130-million tracks in their database. Fortunately for us, we have Mobile Beat’s annual Top 200 (courtesy of DJ Intelligence) which lists the most requested songs from the past year. These songs, a... [read more]
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Taking a Stand: The Development of Speaker Stand Technology by Mike “Dr. Frankstand” Ryan

March 15, 2013 by Mike Ryan
Without them, speakers wouldn't have a leg to stand on. Often overlooked, speaker stands are important but part of any DJ's equipment arsenal. Often we try to overlook them. Let's face it: Stands are kind of odd looking, three legged sticks. Some DJs even cover then up with fabric to disguise them. Darrell Schoenig disagrees and thinks tri-pod stands are beautiful. A pioneer in the speaker stand industry, he was the original founder and owner of Ultimate Support Systems (USS) and helmed the speaker stand maker until 1994. In the mid-70s Schoenig had a hang glider company in Golden, Colorado. By 1976, he had sold that company and moved to Hawaii where he joined two musicians, a brother and sister, to form a Christian music group called "Sweet Melody." The band needed speaker stands and while searching Schoe... [read more]
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Just the Right Song – By Mike “Dr. Frankenstand” Ryan

October 28, 2012 by Mike Ryan
APPROPRIATE TUNES FOR UNIQUE MOMENTS It’s fair to say that most of our clients can’t appreciate the variety of skills mobile DJs have to have to perform at a high level. Music programming is an obvious requirement, but what most people don’t think about is whether or not their DJ will be able to adjust to anything, knowing how to cue up just the right song to make an unexpected moment into something special—or to smooth over a problem or ease a transition with an appropriate tune. For instance, at corporate award banquets we should always be ready to fill “dead air” when a guests is called up to receive their award. Without some kind of music in the background the moment feels uncomfortable for everyone. I always have some fun music in the background. For example, someone slowly walking up s... [read more]