I was lucky to know
Some of the cities were better than others, but all of them taught me something.
While growing up in Transcona, I learned that it didn’t matter if you came from a small town, you could still make it. Then when I began working in Winnipeg, I figured out that if I opened my ears and shut my mouth, maybe I could make a living doing this radio thing.
I found out in Saskatoon, no matter what management says, they much prefer evolution to revolution. Sudbury taught me never to be intimidated by anyone ever again. Ottawa was where I discovered in a toxic situation that you only needed to be surrounded by five to seven like-minded people to become successful.
In Toronto, when they made me the station manager, I learned that you’re whoever the guy who signs your check says you are. In Indy, I figured out how to get the sales department to pay for most of the big promotions.
While living in San Diego (pictured above) I learned how to do a multitude of radio stations at the same time and have fun doing it. In Austin, I found out that if you bring major league talent to a minor league town, you can quickly overthrow it. Boston taught me how to do country for a city that didn’t want it, and in West Palm Beach I learned how to be a better Dad.
As I look back on my career, what I enjoyed the most was creating promotions that stirred the town up.
We suggested that maybe the GMs might want to consider memorizing the words so when all the TV cameras showed up on their doorstep, they could say them convincingly.
Even though Fantasy Park was only a make-believe concert featuring live cuts from dead artists, 100’s of people drove around trying to find it.
Meanwhile, across the hall, at WIBC, we were claiming that in the new year, the feds were going to print new money so we started auctioning off the old stuff. We finally had to shut it down, though, because we couldn’t get the folks to stop bidding more than the money was worth.
While doing the first-ever Prize Catalog at KOGO in San Diego, Don Walker (pictured above) needed a promotion that he owed the DoubleTree Hotel. I suggested that maybe we could wrap up the Prize Catalog with a drop off party.
Don definitely needed one of those, get out of jail free cards.
When she became so frenzied that she started stripping her shirt off, we did a freeze-frame on the call letters just before her nipples became exposed. The crawler running underneath it read, “Next week, Peggy takes the shirt off.”
What a great TV campaign, but there was only one problem, none of the San Diego TV stations would run it. They claimed that it was too risque, but when their news departments heard about the ban, they all ran it in their newscasts. Hell, even the newspapers wrote about it and showed a few pictures of Peggy at the freeze-frame part of the video.
The promos we ran for the promotion said, “It should be the public who decides what’s too risque and you can determine that tonight at so and so’s, sports bar.