Guitars & Radio & Wild Wild Women. (Crazy Man Crazy) Chapter I edited 2/8/22 (1)

When I learned that Little Richard had passed, I realized that most of the pioneers of Rock&Roll are gone.
Sadly, we no longer have Bill Haley, Elvis, Buddy Holly, Fats Domino, or Chuck Berry around anymore, and the only one left of the originators is Jerry Lee Lewis. Who would have figured that?

I still remember how sad I felt when I heard that Buddy Holly had died in a plane crash, but when I learned that Elvis had died, I was devastated.
When I first saw Elvis Presley, it was on a big band show that my father was watching on TV. Not only did Elvis blow my mind, but he also changed my life; I just knew right then that I had to be a guitar man.

Can you imagine what kind of show must be going on up in Rock & Roll Heaven?
Hey, when you’ve got Bill Haley, Elvis, Buddy, John, and George along with Michael Jackson, Hank Williams, Fats Domino, Aretha Franklin, Sam Cooke, Otis Redding, David Bowie, Janis Joplin, Chuck Berry, and Jim Morrison, not to mention, Jimi Hendrix, Jim Croce, Bobby Darin, Bob Marley, Marvin Gaye, Roy Orbison, Freddie Mercury, Glenn Fry, Prince, and Tom Petty waiting in the wings to go on. Hell, it’s almost worth dying just to see them live.

Surprisingly, I know more about most of those folks than I do my own family. For example, all I know about my great grandmother is that she was Lady In Waiting for Queen Victoria.
I do know though that both my Grandfathers were from England, and my Grandmothers were both from Scotland.

Legend has it that my Grandfather, Ben Vince, an engineer, stopped his train in the middle of a field in Scotland so he could chat up my Grandmother, Charlotte Hunter who was there picking flowers.

Then there’s my Grandfather Edward Johns (pictured above) who married his 17-year-old piano player Anne Sutherland so that she could legally tour Europe with his band.
I can’t even imagine what must have gone on during the band breaks because my Father was the youngest of their six kids.
Thinking about my Dad, (Pictured above) what I wouldn’t give to have a journal written by him about his life so I could read it today today. So with that in mind, may I present mine.

It all began in Winnipeg,
but we moved around a lot
Melbourne and Sydney
where the first of our many stops.

Two years in Australia
then it’s off to Vancouver
Now back to the prairies
and a town called Swan River

Then back to Winnipeg
for the birth of my brother
Where we lived in my grandpa’s house
’till my folks bought another.

Hooked up with a friend named Barry
and we played a little ball.
I loved his sister’s strange music
and she was a doll.

Then came the day
when I began to scheme
About making music and pretty women
more than a dream.

I can still remember the day my world turned upside down. My friend Barry and I were at his place practicing for the upcoming little league tryouts which my dad thought was a waste of time.
When he tried to play catch with me, I was so afraid of the ball I didn’t even try to catch it; I just covered up and cringed.Not only did I make the team that summer, but I also made the “Dream Team,” which played its final game in Goldeye Stadium where my father not only saw me play for the very first time, but he also saw me hit a triple.

OK, enough of the glory stuff, let’s get back to that warm spring day and the moment when I’d discovered what I’d be doing for the rest of my life.
After Barry and I worked up a bit of sweat we went inside to get some water. Once in there I couldn’t help but notice this blonde goddess swaying her hips to some strange music. The goddess turned out to be Barry’s seventeen-year-old sister who was listening to one of the first Rock & Roll records ever made, called, “Crazy Man Crazy,” by Bill Haley and his Comets. (pictured above)
As I stood there watching, I had no idea that women who looked like her and the music that sounded like that would dominate the rest of my life.

I recently found “Crazy Man Crazy,” on YouTube, and whenever I listen to it now, I can still see Barry’s sister swaying her hips back and forth, back and forth, back and …

 

 

 

Guitars & Radio & Wild Wild Women. (A Daughter! What The Hell Do You Do With Them?) Chapter XIV 2/11/22

 

It was in my blood
to be a radio guy

And most of what I still do
I learned at old CKY.

Had a boss named Jimmy
who just let me run

And to this day
I’m still having fun.

As I celebrated my 26th birthday in the waiting room of the St. Boniface Hospital, to play or not to play was what was running through my mind.
I was only a radio rookie, but I was really starting to enjoy it, and even though, at the moment it didn’t interfere with my band, I had a feeling that it soon would.

Earlier that same evening, I was having my birthday celebration dinner with Lana and my parents when suddenly she went into labor.
Upon our arrival at St. Boniface Hospital, I was relegated to the waiting room because expectant fathers in those days weren’t welcome in the birthing room. (I have no idea why they want to be in there now)

As I sat around waiting, the more excited I got about the arrival of my brand new son Curtis and could hardly wait to do all the fun things fathers and sons do together.
After what seemed like forever, finally, one of the nurses suggested that there was no need for me to hang around because it looked like it was going to be a long night.
12166344_10154267379724307_1879729255_nThankfully, my good friend Jim Coghill (pictured above) who worked with me at CKY, lived nearby, so we spent the evening at his place toasting my son’s arrival.
I continued to check in with the hospital every half hour and finally, they told me that I should return to the hospital. Unfortunately, though, it was a false alarm, so I decided to take a nap. 

A few hours later, I thought I heard someone call my name, and when I sat up groggy and still half asleep, I noticed that a nurse was standing there holding what looked like a tiny alien in her arms.
The unfortunate poor thing was covered in goop, and its tiny little head appeared misshaped. (They told me later that it had been a difficult birth so forceps were involved )

While trying to clear my head so I could figure out what was going on, I heard the nurse say, “Congratulations, Mr. Johns, you’re the proud father of a baby….” Now, this is where it begins to get really weird because it didn’t sound at all like she said, boy or son.
I thought that maybe it was her French accent getting the way until I suddenly realized that she hadn’t said boy or son, she said a baby girl. Huh! A daughter, what the hell do you do with them?

(My daughter Candis and I pictured above, skiing in Vermont, at her graduation from UCLA, and below, competing in the Iron Man competition.)

 

Geo’s Media Blog. An inside look at music movies radio & life. (happy birthday) 10/01/18

Not so long ago my daughters, Candis and Cami, threw me a wonderful birthday party in San Diego where they even brought in Ron Chapman to MC it. I was very honored and surprised with how many of my Canadian and American friends showed up to roast & toast me. (pictured on top, Candis & Cami & me) (next, left – right, Nance & Ron Chapman, me, Linda Duffy, Cami, Brynn, and Candis.) (next down, me and Gary Russell RIP) (last photo, Jack McCoy and me)
I live in West Palm Beach, so I booked four airline tickets to San Diego and upgraded two of them to first for Cami and her friend Bryn. My date Linda Duffy and I sat about halfway back where  I planned on having a couple of cocktails and relaxing before changing planes in Dallas. Unfortunately, that was not to be. As I sat there chatting with Linda, I hear, “If there’s a doctor on board would they please make themselves known by pressing the call button above their seat.” I remember thinking, God I hate when that happens, I hope it’s not serious. However, when a flight attendant who was hurrying back locked eyes with me, I knew it was serious.
When I got up front, I found Cami laid out on the floor half in and half out of the restroom. She was shaking and throwing up, and the only Doctor on board was a psychologist who thought that she might be suffering from an allergic reaction to something. After getting an antihistamine in her, she settled down a little and we got her back in her seat for our landing in Dallas. However, once we landed, she started again, so they had to take her off on a stretcher. (she may have reacted to the nuts they serve in first class.)
We had a couple of hours before our next flight, so she got to rest, but she had to tough it out when we finally boarded because they wouldn’t let us on if she didn’t appear to be ok. Thank goodness Linda was along because I was a basket case, so Linda sat up front with Cami. Upon landing in San Diego, Linda told me that Cami had thrown up a couple of more times and because she still looked white as a ghost I was very anxious. However, after getting a cab to take us to our hotel, I heard these sweet words, “Daddy I’m hungry, can we get a pizza?

Geo’s Life-Liners

Random Questions
Speaking of birthdays, this week I travel to Tampa to spend mine with my daughter Cami. She says that she’s taking me to her favorite bar where her friends are going to take on the legend. What the hell does that mean?
I would think that the chromosome count XX for females and XY for males would better determine what category athletes should compete in rather than the athletes choosing?

Do liberals or Socialists ever laugh?

Do I understand this correctly, medical marijuana doesn’t get you high?

Why do people who escaped from their homeland still proudly wave the flag of the country that they left behind?

A lot of white people marched with Martin Luther King, but I’ve never heard it mentioned?
 

Why don’t they have production people in the Radio Hall Of Fame? What was better on the radio than the promos Jack McCoy created and voiced for the last contest?

How come it never gets as good as it gets bad?

Didn’t we all wonder just how long it would take Jameis Winston of Tampa Bay to get in trouble again?

Speaking of thugs, don’t they wish that we were as tolerant of them as the NFL is?

The only women I love unconditionally are my daughters; I have questions for the rest.

Speaking of daughters, I wonder how scary it is for my daughters to rely on me after hearing how irresponsible I am from their mothers?

Reality
I’ve heard that the reason that Canada wants to legalize recreational marijuana this month is so they can better cope with their neighbors to the south.

Wow, The Bo-Sox have 108 wins as they close out the season.

I think Hollywood writers should have to disclose their political leanings so we can decide if we want to see a movie that lectures us.
 
People tend to reveal themselves when you no longer can help them.
 
America wasn’t created for the rich; it was designed for the folks who wanna be rich.
 
The 97% who gave up, all work for the 3% who didn’t.
 
Determination and perseverance are what changes the world, thinking that others are going to help though, only slows you down.

We only agree with statements that are about what we already believe.

You really have to work at it to stay stupid.

The big difference between Michael Jordan and LeBron James is … When down by 1 with seconds left, Michael wants the ball, LeBron doesn’t.

Political & Politically Incorrect.
What the left still doesn’t get is the fact Hillary lost the election more than Trump won it. If the Democrats don’t get some good leadership soon, Trump bashing is just gonna get him reelected.
Because you’re left doesn’t make you right.
 
It should be against the law to report the stock market falling if you don’t mention it climbing.
 
All a revolution does is change the people at the top with the same old shit happening below.
 
I wonder what America would be like if the white middle class voted as a block as everybody else does.

The only people who understand how government assistance programs work are those who abuse them.

So Washington, on a scale of 1-10 how goes your war on drugs and terror?

You would think that eventually, politicians would get bored with lining their own pockets and want to share some with the regular folks? Nope!

Music Movies & Radio
After watching Billy Bob Thorton in a few things like Goliath I’m convinced that he and his ilk make a good script a great script. Unfortunately, even a great script can’t make a bad actor any good.

Now I hear that they want to expand the nominees for the Grammys so that more people can win. Hey, why don’t they just hand out participation trophies and be done with it?

I think that the reason instrumentals aren’t popular anymore is because Dee-Jays can’t figure out how to hit the post, so they don’t play them.

Watch for, Writing Radio’s Wrongs, coming to a Website near you.

Geo’s Blog above is about #Fear at 35,000 feet, #MedicalMerijuana, and #MartinLutherKing plus a few other #Life-Liners. Much more @ GeorgeJohns.com. On Twitter@GeoOfTheRadio. Sharing and commenting is appreciated.

 

Bob&Geo (under construction)

Do you think I’m out of it to think this way? For chrissakes, if you can’t get the basics done on a music station, a station where the entire thrust is the experience of listening to music, whether it’s Lite Music, Country Music, Alternative or whatever it is, the experience is going to suck for the listener. When I listened to WLTW in New York the production of the station’s sound was so bad, so poorly done, it made it hard for me to get into what they were trying to do. The same with KKGO in LA. Both stations were so poorly put together, I have a hard time imagining a listener enjoying the “Experience” of those two “Brands”. Good production, the construction of the sound, less talent, less promotion, just music, liners, Id’s and of course the commercials is Radio 101. Can you imagine an unedited show being thrown up on Netflix?

Geo: Netflix is all about product Bob, they spend billions on it. The top executives pride themselves on making as few decisions as possible and just let their staff run it. They work on where Netflix is going and mostly on how they’re going to distribute it. Radio for whatever reason is not very product driven at the moment and is only focussed on the bottom line. However, as my old pal, Socrates always said, “It’s what’s above the bottom line that causes the bottom line.” You know, the old cause and effect thing.I bet that nobody who works at KKGO listens to the station Bob, if they did, they wouldn’t let it continue this way.

KKGO doesn’t have the excuse I’ve heard so often, “the PD is doing 2-3-4-5 stations so he or she doesn’t have the time”.KKGO’s PD is only responsible for “Go Country”. PD/Station Manager Mike Levine is the owner Saul Levine’s son. He’s been around since the station was K-Mozart playing classical music. I wonder if the production was as bad then?

Geo: I doubt if he is going to win PD of the year with how it sounds Bob, you’ve gotta wonder what the hell he’s working on? You’re right though, most programmers are basing what their station sounds like on their lack of time but he sure can’t. What a blown opportunity though, the only country station in America’s #1 radio market, it easily should have double their ratings. Tom Hoyt’s KFROG out of Riverside if in LA would blow them out of the water in a week. Somebody better call Saul.

We didn’t go up to wine country this weekend. So KGO can wait, I did look at their schedule for the weekend, Paid programs, syndication, and more paid shows.

Geo: That’s not going to be a fun listen, their evolution from the greatest radio station in America to what they are now is getting them awfully close to call letter change time.

When we were talking about news radio a couple of days ago and the Fred Heckman truism, “If there’s a column of smoke in the sky and they turn you on to find out what it is and you don’t have it, you’re finished.” After we talked, I was thinking about your pal Jarl Mohn’s connection with KPCC, the NPR news station here. Nobody covered the fires last year better than they did and their human interest follow up stories were incredible. I heard an interview with the Ventura County Fire Marshall, early on he drove to Santa Paula, where the Thomas Fire started, the wind picked up and the fire started moving to the coast, the Fire Marshall said, “I headed west, driving 70mph and I could barely keep ahead of the fire.” It was days later and the guy’s voice was still shaking. KNX had good coverage, but not close to KPCC’s. They probably don’t have the staff to cover it. The local Ventura stations stripped as they are, their hands were tied as well.

Geo: Bob you and I have always known that only four things cause ratings and news is one of them. KGO in San Francisco owned that hill so there was no way you could beat them, they had to beat themselves and they did, they abanded news. WTF!

 

 

 

Bob&Geo Write The Wrongs About Radio. 9/23/18

Hockey is still hockey, you have to put the puck in the net to score. The game has evolved, the game is better, it’s faster and nobody is smoking in the locker room. Radio is still smoking in the locker room. It has to evolve to be relevant in today’s world. Bobby Orr could still play today, but how many of his teammates could? The difference between today’s hockey and radio is there has been almost no evolution in radio. What George and I want to do is to challenge radio to evolve and become relevant again.

Exactly Bob, Could all the folks who got inducted into the numerous Radio Halls of Fame play today? I doubt it, but some sure could, and they’d be the ones who evolved. The content would have to be different and also the way they presented it. Hey, we all love that old youtube aircheck of Jo Jo Kincaid in San Diego, but would that work now, I rather doubt it. However, the philosophy the Hall of Famers used has not changed, it’s still true today. First, you have to be professional, then you need to become interesting. Then and only then do you try to be entertaining.

I’m really looking forward to this Bob because I recently read that Fred Jacobs after doing a research project with a ton of air talent across our nation found out that nobody is doing critique sessions anymore. Ours may be the first critique of their air show that they have had done in years. Geo