Geo’s Media Blog (Jimmy Darin 1962)

Back when I was the National PD of Fairbanks Broadcasting, just before Thanksgiving every year we’d have a management conference. In attendance at these suit and tie affairs (most of us waited until then to buy are new duds for the year) were our GMs, SMs, PDs, Promotion people, and Engineers.
These annual conferences were very futuristic, and Jim Hilliard who ran them dwelled mostly on where things were going and how we could best take advantage of the situation by being there waiting for the future to arrive. In fact, when the economy was at its worst, we had our best year because we’d planned for it.
On the sales side, here’s how it worked. At some point, Jim Hilliard would hand the Sales Managers of each station a folded piece of paper on which he had written what he expected them to bill the following year. When Jerry Bobo of KVIL in Dallas saw his number, I vividly remember him saying,”JESUS CHRIST” very loudly, followed by Dick Yancey of WIBC  who said, “But Jim what if we don’t get the ratings,” to which Hilliard responded with, “Well that may make it a little tougher Dick.” (Jerry, by the way, hit his number less than three quarters the way through the year)
On the programming side, it went like this. A couple of weeks before the meetings, I would call the various PD’s and say, “Tomorrow’s your day in the box baby, tape your station all day and make the best presentation tape out of it that you possibly can. Bring it with you to the conference and good luck; you’ll be playing it for a tough crowd.”
(Below, unbeknownst to him, is what played in 1974 as Jim approached the podium to give his opening remarks)


2 thoughts on “Geo’s Media Blog (Jimmy Darin 1962)

  1. RE: “Jimmy Darin” (
    I grew up in a small town 120 miles from Spokane, WA. KJRB (which was morphed from KNEW when those calls moved to San Francisco) was THE station on the East side of the Cascades. Big sister KJR took care of Seattle and the West side of the state. About the time I was starting to hang out at my hometown station, Jimmy Darin was doing mornings at KNEW (or KJRB?) and Larry Lujack was on at night. I was drawn to radio every time I heard Jimmy’s hysterical theater-of-mind bit called, “The March of the Garbage Cans.” I recall it was some (classical?) music bed with clanging and crashing sounds of cans and Jimmy singing or yelling at the cans to get lined up at the curb because today is garbage day.

    Inspiration comes in strange ways. I would’ve given anything to work with Mr. Hilliard.

    • Geo: I was lucky Bobby, when I started in radio, my head was empty and Jim who was my first radio boss, filled it up with some pretty neat stuff.

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