FARMINGTON — Derek Haskins' career in radio almost never happened.

Now, Haskins, who is better known as Big D, is part of a syndicated radio show broadcast over more than 50 stations in the U.S.

Popular country radio show hosts Big D and Bubba will be at SunRay Park and Casino from 6 to 9 p.m. Friday for a meet and great and from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday at Hi Country Buick/GMC. “Those Devils” and “The High Rollers.” during the events.

Haskins got his start in radio when he was 14 years old in Cookeville, Tenn. A teacher told him he had a good voice and encouraged him to try to get a job at a radio station.

Haskins said before going inside one radio station for an interview he prayed: "God, if this is what you want me to do, make it obvious," he said.

The interviewer asked him how old he was and told him they didn't have any positions but would call if a position opened up.

Haskins said he stood there for a while before saying to the interviewer, "Don't you need my number?"

After that first interview didn't secure him a job, he said he took it as a sign, but his teacher remained persistent. Eventually, Haskins went on an interview in a double-wide trailer that housed a Christian radio station.

Before going inside, he said the same prayer and told God this was the last attempt.

This time, the interviewer asked him if he had a demo tape, to which he replied no.

Then he was asked if he had a resume.

Also, no.

"Can you start Saturday?" he said the interviewer asked him.

Ever since then, Haskins has been in radio.

At 19, he started working as part of the Scott and Big D show in Billings, Mont., where he worked for about six years.

Haskins said his favorite part of his job is "getting to meet all the people, and I don't mean celebrities." Instead, Haskins said he enjoys meeting the "average Joes."

After working in Billings, Haskins moved to Baton Rouge, La., where he worked at the same radio station as Sean "Bubba" Powell, who had an afternoon show. There, Haskins' partner was fired but station officials wanted to keep Haskins.

"My wife had already said, 'You should do mornings with Bubba,'" Haskins said.

When Powell went into work, Haskins asked him if he wanted to do the morning show with him.

"He looked at me and said, 'Nah,'" Haskins said.

Haskins said Powell enjoyed his afternoon shifts. Powell liked to sleep in and stay up late.

"A few days later, he calls me and goes, 'I've been thinking about it, and yeah, I'll do it,'" Haskins said.

After a while, the show went syndicated, and the duo moved to Nashville, Tenn.

"If you're going to do country music, Nashville is the place you've got to be," Haskins said.

Haskins said the show has worked so well because he and Powell are different.

"Bubba's a little wilder than I am," he said. "Actually, he's a lot wilder than I am."

While they may have different methods, Haskins said both he and Powell have "the same destination in mind."

The show has since become the official country music morning show for the U.S. military.

Haskins said he enjoys country music because it is relatable.

"It's a reflection of who I am," he said.

IF YOU GO

What: Meet and Greet with Big D and Bubba

When and where: 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Friday at SunRay Park and Casino and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday at Hi Country Buick/GMC, 1700 San Juan Blvd., in Farmington

More info: Call Kiss Country at 505-325-3541 or www.kisscountry.net .

Hannah Grover covers news, arts and religion for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564-4652 and hgrover@daily-times.com. Follow her @hmgrover on Twitter.