GetbigBodybuilding & Fitness

Dan Solomon
May 15, 2006

Dan Solomon, in the last year, has gained some serious air time as the founder and co-host of Pro Bodybuilding Weekly Radio show, that features some of the top pros, officials and other key players in the bodybuilding industry. I spoke to Dan after Bob Cicherillo and Dan were featured live on stage at the Colorado Pro show, the first time (I think) that the broadcast booth was on the stage. It was interesting. It was different. Here are some questions that I asked Dan about various topics.

Dan Solomon, Questioned by Ron Avidan

  • What is your full name?

      Daniel Solomon

  • Dan, tell us about yourself? Where were you born?

      I was born in Miami 34 years ago... and I currently live in the Palm Beach area. It's a beautiful spot...if you can handle the occasional 120 mph Hurricane.

  • Did you play any sports when you were growing up?

      Yes, I played baseball up until high school.

  • How did you meet your wife Grace?

      My wife and I met in college at the University of Hartford. She's a brilliant real estate attorney here in South Florida. We've been married for almost 9 years. We just found out that our first baby is on the way. Keep your fingers crossed... we still have a long way to go until the projected Thanksgiving due date.

  • You actually have a degree in journalism?

      Yes, I've always had great affection for writing. I've had the good fortune of writing for some terrific publications in and out of the industry. A journalism degree has proven to be a useful tool in all areas of business.

  • How did you get involved with bodybuilding and the sport?

      I've been attending bodybuilding events for twenty years. But it wasn't until the 1998 Mr. Olympia contest in New York City that it became a business. I started representing various athletes in the industry. It was a great way to learn all aspects of this industry. There are so many layers to this industry and I've had the chance to understand the business from all levels. There is a unique infrastructure to this sport and there are very few who truly understand the scope of how the industry works. I've formed some terrific relationships.

  • Competing in 5 NPC events, how did you feel the experience was?

      Competing was the best thing I ever did. I think everyone can learn a great deal about themselves by entering just one contest. Testing your personal limits and understanding how the body responds to extreme diet and training. It builds character. I have so much respect for the guys at the pro level. The road to becoming a pro is a painful and relentless journey. Most people can't even fathom what it takes. I'll never understand how someone can be called a "2nd" or "3rd" tier pro. Give me a break. These guys are all warriors.

  • How and where did you get the idea for “Physique Management Group”?

      PMG was created in order to formalize my various business interests in the industry, including athlete management, writing, ad revenue derived through the radio show and other projects. Bodybuilding started as a labor of love and it has evolved into a much greater part of my life. In life, the goal is always to make a living doing what you truly love to do. I am very proud to report that the sport of bodybuilding is treating me well.

  • Who do you represent at the moment?

      As most people know, I started by serving as the manager for Darrem Charles. We've worked together on countless projects. I owe a great deal to Darrem. Together, we have worked tirelessly to get him hundreds of appearance deals and some great endorsement deals. When we started working together, he and his family had just arrived from Trinidad and were living in a small apartment. Darrem now has a fleet of high-end cars that he keeps in the oversized garage of his beautiful South Florida home. We could all learn a lot from Darrem's approach to life. I also represent Kim Lyons who just signed on with NBC to serve as the trainer on the primetime series "The Biggest Loser". She's an IFBB fitness pro and this is the opportunity of a lifetime for her.

  • How did you get started with the "Pro Bodybuilding Weekly" Radio show?

      Funny you should ask. I just finished doing an interview for Flex Magazine on this exact topic. Ok, here's the short version. About a year ago I was driving in my car listening to Shaquille O'Neil being interviewed on a local talk radio station. For some reason, I kept thinking how great it would be if bodybuilding fans had the same opportunity to hear directly from their favorite bodybuilding stars. At the time, the only way to follow the sport was a handful of print publications and a few websites. I thought to myself that bodybuilding fans deserve more....and the athletes desperately need a better way to communicate with the fans. At that point, I put the wheels in motion and signed a deal with a production company that produces talk radio shows for online broadcast.

  • Why did you choose to broadcast the show online?

      As you know, bodybuilding is a worldwide sport. So I decided that the program needed a vehicle that had a global reach. Online streaming radio technology has proven to be an ideal way to ensure that fans from all corners of the globe can tune in to the show. You'd be surprised to know that some of our largest numbers come from Europe and Australia.

  • What made you choose the name Pro Bodybuilding Weekly?

      The name speaks for itself. We broadcast live nearly every week. Approximately 40 shows a year that focus exclusively on professional bodybuilding.

  • Who was your first choice as co-host of the Pro Bodybuilding Weekly show?

      As you know, there is only a short list of individuals who are up for the task. At first, I looked into some industry insiders. In fact, I even spoke to you Ron! I also spoke to Shawn Ray. Shawn and his wife were about to give birth to their daughter, so the timing was bad. I also spoke to Bob Cicherillo. In the end, Bob was the easy choice. He's not afraid to say exactly what's on his mind and people respond passionately to what he has to say. Some people love him... others hate him. But, his opinions never fail to stir up a response. Needless to say, this is exactly what a radio show needs.

  • Do you go to a studio to tape the show, or does everybody call and work from their homes?

      All of the shows are aired Live. When I started the show, I made a small investment in some broadcast equipment in order to create a home studio. Bob is patched in through a regular telephone connection from his home in L.A. The actual production studio is based in Arizona. It's a creative setup, but its the only way to do it, especially when you consider the logistical issues of having me in Florida, Bob in California and a guest in some other part of the world.

  • How much does the internet web sites, like Getbig and help your radio show?

      The websites have been terrific. is the #1 most visited website in the industry. They have been a great friend to the show by promoting our weekly broadcasts and providing some revenue to help support the program. has been great as well. There are some serious bodybuilding fans who visit the site everyday and you guys have done a great job of getting behind the show. We especially enjoy the feedback on the boards. The GetBig members are an interesting and passionate collection of people. The feedback is taken seriously... most of the time.

  • Did you think that the show would succeed past the first few episodes?

      My original contract was for 13 shows. I had no idea what to expect. As it turned out, the feedback has been overwhelming. For starters, the magazines have been very kind to us. Nearly every issue of all the popular magazines include some form of coverage about the radio show. Our logo is featured on the home page of Muscle&,,,, and of course we get plenty of support from We just produced our 37th show and I just signed a contract extension with the production company for an additional 26 shows. The Live audience continues to grow and the "on-demand" replay numbers approach 70,000 per episode. This does not even include the 25,000 listeners who subscribe to the podcast version of the show. All of our listener statistics are tracked by the production company and they are provided directly to our advertisers.

  • How much time does Pro Bodybuilding Weekly take per week, now that you are traveling more?

      The show takes up quite a bit of time. The process includes promoting the show, scheduling guests, handling advertiser inquiries and invoicing...and than I have to prepare for the actual Live broadcast with Bob and coordinate with the production company for commercials and other technical related issues.

  • Besides the radio show, are you working in a full time job?

      About 5 years ago I sold a recruiting company that I owned. This allowed me to escape corporate America. I than purchased a personal training center in Coral Springs. I owned it for about 2 years before selling it in December. I am now working full time in the fitness/bodybuilding industry.

  • So what do you think of the new radio show by Larry Pepe?

      Larry is a good guy. We had him on Pro Bodybuilding Weekly a few months ago. I guess you can say that he was inspired to start his own project. I have no issues with Pep. We've spoken a few times on the phone and I told him that I'm here to help him in any way possible. He owns a supplement company called SprayFlex and he's using the show as a way to bring attention to the products. I wish him well with it. I really dont consider this a "competiton".

  • As you are sponsored by Weider/AMI and Muscletech, can they dictate to you who can go on your show?

      The objective of any business is to gain maximum exposure. The folks at Weider have been very supportive of what we are doing with the show. They cover the weekly broadcasts in Flex Magazine and they provide some powerful advertising. But, lets be clear about one thing, I am free to have ANYONE on the show. A lot of people have conjured up theories to suggest that the show is controlled. Perhaps this will help; If Weider controlled WHO we have on the show, do you think I would feature MD's John Romano as a regular guest? Do you think I would welcome Lonnie Teper from Ironman magazine? The athletes who appear on the show are endorsed by virtually every company in the industry. MuscleTech is our title sponsor and they are a great partner for the show, however, there are no restrictions on who our guests can be.

  • How do you feel when people say to you that your sponsors tell you what to do?

      When people say that, its obvious that they havent taken a close look at who has come on the show. We invited Vince Taylor to come on our show knowing full well that he was considering a jump to the new PDI organization. Romano came on the show and openly criticised the hell out of the AMI Olympia contest. Those were great shows and I did not receive a single complaint from any advertisers or members of the IFBB. All of our sponsors tell us that their only priority is audience numbers. They really don't care who we have on the show

  • How do you choose who you want to have on the show?

      This is the best part about doing the show. We receive daily emails from athletes and industry insiders who want to come on the program. We try to mix it up. We have also made it a habit to feature the winning athlete immediately following a contest. The mixture of guests has included legends like Dorian Yates and Lee Haney all the way to all-stars like Flex Wheeler, Jay Cutler, Ronnie Coleman. We have also enjoyed chatting with industry insiders like the IFBB's head judge Jim Rockell, Arnold Classic promoter Jim Lorimer, Muscle & Fitness Magazine editor-in-chief Peter McGough, Ironman Magazine's Lonnie Teper and the list goes on.

  • Are there some people whom you wont put on the show because it is not politically correct?

      This is obviously the "Wayne" question. Everyone is waiting for us to bring on Wayne. In a strange way, there are people who are judging the show strictly on whether we invite Mr. Demilia on the program. It's actually been fun to monitor the interest that people have in Wayne. There is no question that Wayne has a long and interesting history in this sport. As you know, we do nearly 40 shows a year. Sooner or later, all voices will be heard. In the mean time, if anyone feels the need to talk to Wayne, they can call him personally. He'll be glad to share his plans with you.

  • What happens if 2 or 3 more bodybuilding oriented radio shows start appearing in the future. Will there be room for everyone?

      I am flattered anytime I hear about a new radio show. The only thing that I have control over is "Pro Bodybuilding Weekly". I'm not going to contemplate how we might be affected by additional shows. This has been a long process that required countless hours. There are some great people behind this show. I welcome all new shows. But, I'm not quite ready to call it "competition".

  • How did it feel getting the award in 2005 “Most Creative of the Year" by Ironman Magazine.

      First of all, Lonnie Teper is a class act. He has been around the block several times in this sport and he's one of the most knowledgable people in the industry. It meant a lot that he chose to recognize me for this award.

  • How did it feel being up on stage at the 2006 Colorado Pro Show?

      Its always interesting being a part of something new. Shawn Ray and Jeff Taylor put a lot of emphasis on the production aspect of the show. Bob and I were proud to be a part of it. Our objective was to provide a slightly different flavor to the event. Everyone has seen the standard emcee format time and time again. We simply tried to create more interaction with the audience and provide more information and a different energy. The feedback was very positive after show. After the event, Jeff Taylor invited us back to do it again next year.

  • Does Bob Cicherillo talk too much on the radio show?

      Bob gets paid to talk. He and I dont agree on everything, but that's what makes the show work. We are both very open-minded to each other. He is definitely an interesting character. We were walking down the street in Denver and a group of young kids mobbed him for a photo. He stopped and spent 10 minutes posing with the kids. The kids were having a blast and Bob was loving every minute of it.

  • What are the toughest technical difficulties of doing the radio show?

      It can be difficult doing a show with someone when both hosts are in separate locations. Sometimes its hard to know when the other person has something to say and we'll end up talking over each other. The first few shows were difficult, but we've learned to work well together over time.

  • How do you feel about the judging in the sport of bodybuilding?

      Is there anyone alive who actually LOVES the judging? I'm convinced that the whacky world of judging was created for the sole purpose of giving all of us plenty to talk about and debate. It's a necessary evil. If I had to express one complaint, I would say that the most obvious flaw is that all the major shows are judged by nearly the same panel. I think the athletes deserve a rotation of fresh perspectives.

  • Have you ever been treated unfairly in bodybuilding? Behind the scenes? Politics?

      I've been given every opportunity to be succesful in this industry. Everyone has their opinions. Some will approve while others will criticize. Overall, I can't complain. This industry is comprised of some interesting people. Those with noble intentions are given opportunities to succeed. Those who are driven by ego will come and go. I suppose the same exists in all professions.

    For more information about Pro Bodybuilding Weekly - The Voice of Pro Bodybuilding, visit the official website at: