Erin & Soda open up about mysterious disappearance & fear of being sacked
Mix 102.3 breakfast hosts Erin Phillips and Mark ‘Soda’ Soderstrom have opened up about their mysterious disappearance from the airwaves earlier this year.
Despite the rumour mill, Soderstrom explained the incident away, telling the Mediaweek podcast it was about giving the new show space to breathe.
“I suppose it was interesting in that scenario because it was a new show, and I think getting our show around the planning processes and planning a bit further ahead. I think we’d had that first sort of period before the holidays, and then it was essentially Duncan [Campbell, chief content officer] just gave us the chance to reset, spend some time looking at what we had learnt so far, how do we out that into place now that we’ve almost had a bit of a – to use a footy analogy – a bit of a practice match type time – right, now how do we take that to now start to make some real impact and hopefully do some stuff that’s good and that people really love?”
Soderstrom also said he’s surprised his media career – including reading the sport on Channel 7 News – is still going.
“I don’t even know why I’m on radio because I thought I’d get sacked after six months, and why I’m on TV because I thought, I feel like I’ve got imposter syndrome. So to me, I still find it quite bizarre that I find myself in these positions,” he told James Manning.
“I don’t come from a radio background. I didn’t start ‘til later and I didn’t even really come from a TV background. I was a school teacher and a fireman and all these different things, and I sort of stumbled into media probably by accident.”
Phillips too said she’d felt the pressure.
“Co-hosting a Breakfast show for three hours with all eyes [on you], it was very daunting. I’ve been in high-pressure situations, so it did help a little bit, but honestly it didn’t prepare me for anything like live radio. So it was something new and different, so it was definitely a thrill to be able to do those three months in the beginning,” she said.
Soderstrom, however, praised his new co-host’s authenticity and down-to-Earth nature, and said the reality of Breakfast radio is you’ll be caught out if you fake it.
“The thing since I’ve been here in radio, it’s been drummed into me, you’ve got to be yourself, you’ve got to take the facade down. If you want to pretend to be someone, you’ll get caught out at some point, because you just can’t keep up that the whole time . So it’s sort of caution to the wind… You’ve got to stand up and say ‘I think this’ or ‘I feel this’, because you would do that in a private situation. And essentially I hope that the feeling with our show with everyone, and Erin and I have discussed this a lot, is essentially you’re sitting down with a bunch of friends, as we consider our audience great, we’ve got the best audience in the business, I have no doubt about that, and they’re generous and they look after each other and they come along for the ride. I sort of think about it as we’re sitting at a barbie having fun. Sometimes we’re going to get serious about a situation, other times we’re going to take the piss out of each other because that’s the Aussie way of showing a bit of love and care for each other as well.”