Rising Student Artists: ‘4 Guys in a Booth’s’ farewell season

(David Armelino | The Oswegonian)
(David Armelino | The Oswegonian)

Four Oswego State students are sending their voices over the WNYO airwaves for the last time as they enter their eighth and final season.

The show is “Four Guys in a Booth.” The guys are John Mongiello, Allen Wengert, Adam Rosenbarker and Brian Camporese. The four seniors will be airing the third episode of their farewell season Monday at 9 p.m.

The show started in 2010 when Mongiello wanted his own show on the student-run station.

“The reason I came to Oswego was because I wanted to get involved in the radio and TV and stuff,” Mongiello said. “I joined and I got the spot and originally I played music for two weeks and I didn’t like it because I couldn’t express myself that much.”

Mongiello was walking to the Campus Center with Wengert and producer Chris Walters when he asked them to come on the air with him. They hit it off and kept the idea rolling from there.

As for where the name came from, Mongiello said that the credit goes to once-host and producer, Walters.

“We couldn’t decide a name for the show, we wanted it to be catchy and something we could brand and then Chris said simply, in his simplistic style, ‘Why don’t we just call it four guys in a booth?’” Mongiello said. “That’s what it was at the time, just the four of us and then the name stuck and here we are.”

Wengert said that the group began holding the show on a weekly basis and eventually took the show to a two-hour time slot the following semester. This ultimately led to the group becoming the No. 1 show on WNYO.

Camporese said the chemistry between the hosts helped take the show off the ground.

“When we had a really good time on the show we just decided that we were just going to do this every week and plan it out,” Camporese said. “We really got good at it.”

Chris Walters, also a senior, was originally one of the four hosts of the show, but Rosenbarker took over his role when he returned home to Binghamton to figure out where he wanted to go in life. Walters returned to Oswego State and 4GB as one of the producers of the show.

Rosenbarker said he became involved after hearing Mongiello talk about the show. Once the show became more popular, there was the opportunity to add the education major to the show.

Despite the show being called 4 Guys in a Booth, the team expands to as many as seven or nine members in the studio. Adam Shear has been the executive producer of the show since he joined in season three.

“In my sophomore year I was asked by John to join the show,” Shear said. “I’d originally pitched to him freshman year, during the show’s second season, the idea that the show should become a podcast on iTunes.”

Shear runs the show’s social media and meets with hosts to select content that goes on the air. He gets the hosts to talk if they have not been talking for a while. Shear edits the show down after each episode and puts it on iTunes. The broadcasting major from Long Island even has his own segment titled “Shear Genius” in which he reads off news headlines during the show, sometimes making it a game for the hosts to try and guess which headline came from The Onion.

Tyler Baker-Carr is also a producer on the show and has been involved since the very first season. He helps organize the show and is more of a background help for the hosts.

While it’s been a long ride, all of those involved are excited for the final season.

“It is sad,” Baker-Carr said. “We’re all very close and we’re probably going to have an emotional ending that’s for sure. It’s going to be a roller coaster ride, but it’ll be a good roller coaster ride.”

“It’s going to feel weird when it ends,” Shear said. “Adding that he is enjoying the ride as he “always enjoys the show, week in and week out.”

Mongiello expects there to be crying once the final season begins to set in after spring break. Wengert said reality is starting to settle with him sooner though.

“Looking forward to it [the eighth season]. It was really exciting, we have a lot of exciting stuff planned for this season,” Wengert said. “At the same time, now that it’s started, now that we’re in our second episode it’s starting to hit us that it’s the last season.

The group said there are big plans for the current season. Mongiello said the crew has a 4GB Olympics to coincide with the Sochi Olympics and plan on having guests who played big roles in the past. They have a bunch of plans that will surprise people.

“We’re going to go out with a bang,” Mongiello said. “We have a legacy to cement.”