Geo’s Media Blog (Buried Treasures) Under Construction

When I was living in Transcona in my early twenties, I was having the time of my life. Not only did I play for The Jury who had records on the charts, but I also worked part-time at CKY which was my favorite radio station. How cool was that?
Things were going so well not to mention how much fun that I had no idea that in the not too distant future, I’d be forced to make a choice.It wasn’t long before that not too distant future showed up, in the form of my daughter Candis, and reluctantly I left the Jury.

As difficult as that was especially since we had the #1 Canadian record on the charts (see above), but as I look back now, it was a no-brainer. CKY had just named me to replace Daryl ‘B’ when he left for Vancouver as their new Music Director and as it turned out, I was a hell of a lot better at radio than I ever was at playing guitar.

Having that Music Director title soon led to my becoming the Program Director of CKOM in Saskatoon, and then before you knew it, my career was on fire. Pretty soon I was off to Sudbury, next to Ottawa, and then wrapped up the Canadian portion of my radio career in Toronto as the station manager of CFTR.

Things were very exciting in Toronto and we were doing well but then America called. Hey, but it’s like they say, “If you haven’t played in the States, you haven’t played. So putting Canada in the rearview mirror of my beat-up old T-Bird, I headed south to Indianapolis where I became the National Program Director of Fairbanks Broadcasting.
Things went so well in Indy that I had to leave because I was turning forty and if I didn’t leave now while I was at the top of my game, I would never achieve my lifelong dream of someday living in California.

Over the next twenty years or so, I was so busy that I never thought much about my band days until a special box set of CD’s showed up at WRMF in Palm Beach.
What made this box set so special was, it contained seven cuts from my old band, the Jury. However, not knowing if they stood the test of time, I decided to listen to them in the car on my way home.

Ok, my meetings are all done, time to jump into the old Benz, pop the top, and then crank up the player, and as I rolled up onto I 95 and hit the play button, I was about to realize what Sir Paul meant when he said, “I’m more amazed about the Beatles now than I ever was when I was one.” Because, when Terry’s guitar intro for “Until You Do” blasted out of my car’s speakers, not only was I amazed, I was magically transported back in time.

There we were on a very chilly December evening being led down the dimly lit hallway of CKY by two of the station’s biggest jocks, Chuck Dann and Daryl ‘B,’ who were kind enough to help us cut a demo tape. However, having recently lost our vocalist, Donny Burns, and not wanting to blow the session, we were only going to cut some instrumentals.
We’d replaced Donny with Bruce Walker, and we were very excited because he could sing all that new British Invasion stuff but he was still a couple of rehearsals from being ready, but he came along anyway, just to hang out.

I can still hear the swoosh and thud of the studio door as it closed behind us that night; it kinda felt like we’d entered the cone of silence. As I looked around, I couldn’t help but notice that the acoustic tiles were all yellowed from the hundreds of cigarettes smoked in here by those who had come before us.
In the center of the studio stood a large black grand piano which seemed to be crying out to be played, so I couldn’t resist banging out a few bars of “A Whole Lot Of Shaking.”

As we sat around waiting for Chuck and Daryl to set things up, Bruce wandered over to where Terry and I were tuning our guitars and asked if we could help him finish up a song, he was writing called “Until You Do.” He’d hoped that maybe we could tag it on at the end of the session if time permitted.

The recording of our instrumental tracks went quickly so we decided to have a go at the new tune. After laying it down a few times, we headed into the control room to hear what we had and when “Until You Do” burst out of the speakers, we were all shocked. Not only did it sound pretty good, but it also sounded very British. (click on the links at the bottom of the page to hear what we sounded like when we went into the studio 55 years ago as the Phantoms and came out as the Jury)

Chuck and Daryl suggested that I should bring the tape back tomorrow so their boss Jimmy Darin could hear it because if anybody knew what we should do with it, it would be him.
The next day at high noon, there I was back in the studio again with Chuck and Daryl, nervously waiting for Jim’s arrival. As I stood there I was just praying that the dawning of a new day hadn’t altered the sound of our new tune in any way.

When Jim finally joined us, Daryl hit the play button, and as “Until You Do” poured out of the speakers I thought, “Damn, it even sounds better today.”
When the last note faded away, Jim asked me if I could bring the tape back when he got off the air at six so he could play it for Hal Ross from London Records who was coming by to take him to dinner.

As long as I live I’ll never forget the indescribable feeling that went through me when after Hal listened to “Until You Do” and said, “Hell, I’ll release that,” and just like that, we were London recording artists. Hey, wait till the Stones hear that we’re label mates; I’ll bet they’ll want us to open for them.

Then, with the standard contract stuffed into the pocket of my jeans, you know, the one where the record company gets everything, and you get nothing, I headed home to share the incredible news with everybody. As I flew down the stairs, Neil Young was making his way up, and I remembered wondering, “What the hell is he doing here? Surely he’s not going to and record anything; he can’t even sing.”

GEO’S LIFE-LINERS

Short cuts are just traps.

If you don’t have a real strong airstaff, you better test your music every quarter.

Weathercasters are the only people in the world who can be wrong and still stay employed.

America needs new rich people, the current ones are boring, and they also aren’t doing much for our country.

Is it just me, or have the SLs had their day?

Your career is on fire if you get to attend all the meetings where most things happen, primarily if they’re in your office.

Contrary to public opinion, I’m not all that sad between happy hours.

What happens to the money when the government catches a big company doing bad things and fines them?

Have you ever noticed that the rest of the world expects America to help?

The best way to get what you want is to deserve it.

I realized long ago that there was no benefit in growing up.

So who’s wiser, married, or unmarried guys?

The only way to move your life forward is to do something scary.

A house of cards is built on excuses.

COMMENTS

Don Walker: Always enjoy the tidbits of wisdom …It seems like they’re speaking to me! (The List)

Cat Simon: Good One George: That is indeed true about Sir Paul: By the time the Beatles would hit the stage, they had no songs to play. The acts that were on before them beat them to it, but he sure doesn’t have that problem today. LOL. (Necessity Is A Mutha!)

Irene Ness: As an independent widow for the last seven years, I realize most men are looking for a nurse or a purse. I am not a nurse, and my husband and I worked dam hard for MY purse. So I will spend it on myself, my kids, and my grandkids. (It’s Not The Length)

Ted Farr: We broke records here in BC George, it’s been the winter from hell. Wine country is now a whine country. (Let It, Snow)Bob Christy: George and I have discussed this at length, so much so, it drives my lovely wife crazy at times. We’ve gotten beyond the “Old days were great” stage, and we’ve moved on. It’s time to discuss the way forward from where the business is right now and where it needs to go. (Radio, It’s Over)

Red Robinson: Daryl was a class act. I was responsible for bringing him to Vancouver. In his final days, he would visit me in Gastown. I could tell he was in physical trouble soon after he moved back to Winnipeg. He was a great natural talent and is missed. (Remembering ‘B’)

 

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