Geo’s Media Blog. (K103 Part II, Craig Walker)

Ever since I got into radio I’ve always dreamed of owning a radio station. Hey, if they won’t let you own a piece of the rock, you get your own rock, right?
Eventually, my brother Reg and I, along with our CFO, Bill Yde raised a bunch of money and purchased KKCW, (K-103) which was a brand new facility in Portland Oregon.

While waiting for the FCC to grant our license, I flew into Portland to check out the radio landscape.
After dialing around a little, I finally got to the #1 station in town, KGW, and discovered that I just had to have their morning man.

His name was Craig Walker (pictured above) and he reminded me a lot of Ron Chapman who was the longtime morning man in Dallas at KVIL.
Craig was warm and smooth, and not only could tell that he loved Portland, but Portland loved him back, especially the ladies.

When I finally got to meet Craig, I liked him a lot but realized real quick that this wasn’t going to be an easy task.
Not only did he have a year-long non compete, but if you looked up the word expensive, you’d see the picture I have of him at the top of this page.

Because our money guys wouldn’t guarantee his salary, I had to mortgage my home in Coronado to do so.
Hey, as I said earlier, I just had to have him. (Craig claims that he still has the napkin that I wrote his offer on)

Having to wait a year would have been a deal-breaker for most, but for us, it was perfect because we planned on doing the same concept that we did in Dallas.
The concept, code-named, “Build Your Own Radio Station,” was conceived as a stalling technique while waiting for the Dallas and Fort Worth rating books to be merged.

It worked so well in Dallas that we did it again on WRMF in Palm Beach, and in San Antonio on Class FM.
Even though we were just being cute in Palm Beach and San Antonio, we needed to stall for a whole year in Portland.

We began our soft launch of K103 by running some on-air promos saying that we’d been granted a license by the FCC to begin broadcasting at 101.3 on the FM band.
The promo then went on to say that because we were required by law to serve the people of Portland, we figured that the best way to do that was to turn the radio station over to them.

We let those words sink in for a while before saying, “Portland, this is your radio station and we’re only here to do what you want to be done.”
Then we gave them a phone number to call and then every Monday when we would launch something new, we’d use their phone calls telling us to do it.

All we had to do now was stretch it all out for a year then launch Craig as the final piece.
Even though we didn’t have Craig yet, I had a piece of paper that said I did, so why keep it a secret right?

From the moment that Craig agreed to join us, I began to let it slip that Craig Walker was K103’s new morning man.
Eventually, a newspaper reporter came-a-calling to ask about our plans for the station but I, of course, knew exactly what she really wanted to know.

When she finally got around to asking me about the rumor going around that Craig Walker was joining us, I told her that it wasn’t a rumor, it was true.
However, when she confessed that when she first heard the rumor she checked it out with the management of KGW, and they said, “Absolutely not!” I then asked her if she ever listened to Craig, and when she said, “Almost every morning,” I said, “Wait till you hear him on FM!”

As the year crept by, we kept adding things big and small to the airways and I tried to keep the Craig controversy alive.
Craig, because of his contract, wasn’t allowed to say anything. However the same lady reporter who interviewed me, did tell me that the last time she asked him about K103, he gave her a mischievous smile.

Then shockingly, with about six months to go, KGW suddenly pulls Craig off the air. I guess they were hoping that the folks would soon forget about him.
However, they were the forgetful ones because they forgot that Craig was on TV every afternoon as the host of PM Magazine.

Enjoy your retirement Super Star, thanks for the ride.

GEO’S LIFE-LINERS

Diplomacy doesn’t always work, just ask the folks who had to deal with Attila The Hun, Genghis Khan, Hitler, Mussolini, Himmler, Hirohito, Stalin, Castro, Idi Amin, Pol Pot, Ghadafi. Sadam Hussein and Osama Bin Ladin.

Few people notice you doing anything right but everybody sees you do something wrong.

Wealthy people are all alike, even the rich thugs don’t share.

People who bitch the most are usually the people who caused what the bitching’s all about.

Nobody is more powerful than the middle class, we get to elect the government and we get to throw them out.

When asked if you want to hear a joke, does anybody ever say yes?

People who are hurting, hurt others.

I can remember when people were known for more important things than being a Republican or Democrat.

When Cami was a little girl my Mom scolded me for taking her on so many adventures when she’d probably never remember any of it?
I told her, “I don’t care if she remembers, we’re both enjoying ourselves right now.”

You know you’re getting old when people start calling you mister. However, whenever I hear, Mr. Johns, I can’t help but wonder what the hell my father’s doing here.

 

 

 

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