Geo’s Media Blog (It Takes No Brains) New 3/09/20

I work with some great people who run radio stations in the wine country, and every year around this time, we meet at Gordon Zlot’s place in Palm Springs for our annual, “Confab in the Desert.” (pictured on top)
It all kicks off on a Friday afternoon with a few Mojitos conjured up by Tom Skinner, and then we spend the rest of the weekend discussing our plans for the upcoming year.

Last year the “Confab” was held in May, and when we finished up on Sunday morning, I began my trek back to LAX, but first, I was going to hook up with my Grandson Nathaniel in Sunland, which is near Pasadena. As I was driving west on interstate 10, I noticed the exit to San Bernadino, which brought back a lot of good memories about when I used to work with KFROG when Joe Amaturo owned it, and Tom Hoyt was the GM.

Wondering how the Frog was doing, I decided to check them out, and as I listened, I remember hearing K-FROG for the first time. I was driving from LAX to San Bernadino to meet up with Joe Amaturo to discuss my getting involved with the station.
I could hear the Frog almost for my whole drive from LA, so when I arrived at my hotel, I spent the rest of the day listening around to the market.

I was up bright and early the next morning, and after checking out the Frogmen in the morning, I made my way into the station where I met with Mr. Amaturo. (shown above with the lovely Mrs. A)
When Joe asked me what I thought about K-Frog, I told him that I had some good news and bad news. The bad news I told him is that your competitor sounds better than you do, but the good news is, they don’t have a chance.
All those corny frogs names you’re using on-air I went onto say, are wonderful and even though your air talent is probably embarrassed about having to use them, I bet the ladies in the Inland Empire love them. They’re cute sounding, and as we all know, cute trumps macho every time. Your ratings are going to be huge!

There is nothing as much fun as working with the #1 radio station in town, and not only was I right about the Frog’s ratings, I believe that because almost every woman who lived in the market listened to K-FROG, they also got all the money.

My visits to the market were almost too much fun. However, many of the adventures Tom Hoyt and I got involved in, are better left for another Blog. (shown above) However, as George Harrison sang, “All Things Must Pass,” and pass they did when CBS, who liked to buy all the radio stations I was involved with, but unfortunately think that they know better, bought KFROG, that’s all she wrote for me.

Anyway, here I am now driving along and listening to today’s K-Frog which is now owned by Entercom, all of a sudden it hits me, the Frog names are gone. What? Well, it only proves once again that it doesn’t take brains to buy a radio station, it just takes money.”

GEO’S LIFE-LINES

Radio has to figure out what it does the best and then do it all the time.

As far as I’m concerned, Neilson only does three things wrong. They under measure mornings, they over measure the rest of the day, and they’re probably cutting corners because the word has it that they’re for sale. 

Being gay is ok, but it’s not special enough to warrant all the activity that surrounds it. 

The person who can handle responsibility always ends up with a ton of it.

You know you’re getting old when you’ve never heard of the current singers in Ringo Starr’s All Starr Band.

When a company starts cutting back to become more profitable, somehow the executives’ salaries always survive. 

I think middle-class white men should get organized and have a parade. We could carry signs reading, “We’re tired of paying most of the taxes and getting nothing.” Just our sheer numbers should be enough to scare the sh*t out of the government.

Even though a lie may sound like the truth, it ain’t.

Past behavior is a predictor of future behavior. 

Wow, the Saudis are considering allowing their women to fly without a male companion. How progressive of them, huh?

It’s the end of a hockey era for me as the Rocket’s little brother, Henri, dies.

I understand that depression is caused sometimes by a person’s inability to deal with how they’re going to deal with the future. I guess I’ve never suffered from depression because whenever I wonder about the future, I get excited.

COMMENTS

Hollis W Duncan: Andy was paired with Ben Laurie while I was at KVIL and & he & I enjoyed several lunches and many good conversations.  Andy was so confident in his intelligence that he felt no need to prove it to anyone, so our discussions (with me mostly listening) consisted of stories that showed a high level of knowledge & understanding paired with profound insight.  When we were sitting in a Deli in University Park, Andy taught me the proper pronunciation of Gefilte Fish.  When KVIL started charging for parking, Andy left the memo on Dave Spence’s door with the typed note: “Thank you for helping KVIL make another million.” Spence went around to all of the typewriters to find the culprit. Andy was a great newscaster and a good guy. (News To Me)

Dave Spence: George – I don’t know who Hollis Duncan is, and he certainly doesn’t know me or the story he attaches to me. While I was there, we never charged for parking. What he is referencing was when we went up on the cost of cold drinks (5 or 10 cents as I recall)  from the “Coke” machine. The note was on newsprint, which was only used in the- wait for it – newsroom. I agree that Andy was a great newsman. Very well educated, expansive vocabulary, and voice inflection that left no doubt what side of the story he was on. (News To Me)

Jim Quail: Bruce: What a great tribute to our fallen fathers. They gave us such an incredible gift of a free country, and your gift back to them will probably reach up to them.
God Bless,  Easter Quail. (In Flanders Field – Bruce Walker, The Jury)

Peter McLane: George,
Please give us a bio on Jim West. I always wondered what happened to him.
He was a friend and great Pam’s jingle salesman. Like so many others in our industry, they are gone but not forgotten.
I programmed for Stoner Broadcasting and Ken Greenwood’s Ventures’ (About George Johns)

Geo: Jim was responsible for my consulting career taking off so fast, Peter, and he was also one of my partners when we bought Fairwest from Mr. Fairbanks.

Earl Mann: What I’m going to say will make ‘progressives’ reach for a brown paper bag. But, here goes: Trump is doing an incredible job, especially considering the headwinds the liberal media throws at him 24/7. “It’s the economy stupid”! (Comments)

Paul Barsky: Cami…..Congrats on your graduation!  Your dad is so proud of you, and you’ve got the Johns genes, so you’ve got an excellent head start as you look toward this new journey.
All the best! (Camera Graduates)

Terry Kenny: George, that was great…..I loved the entire history, although I remember some of it differently.  That could be because of my history with one of my first groups, the ChorduRoys, which was a great experience for me until the Phantoms/The Jury. What a heartwarming legacy! (I Remember The Jury)

Barry O’Brien: I appreciate your concerns, but I’m wondering how many people would listen to a radio station that focused on the negative all the time. Then again, I just sold the stuff you put on the air, so what do I know?  It all worked out, ok. (Writing The Wrongs)

James Ford: I love this blog. I remember KLZS in Wichita using the “The station you are helping to build” approach. It was a great concept. (K103 Part II)

Terry Styles: I always meant to ask you, Geo, where do all the above sayings come from in your blogs? Hard to believe that one man has that much knowledge about the world…..original opinions as well! OMG, so, so many!!! (Decent Women)

Geo: Terry, I have no idea where they come from. Maybe I read them or heard them somewhere, but most mornings, a few of them in my head bursting to get out. However, when I ran them through a plagiarism checker, it said that I stole them all from Geo’s Media Blog.

Lesley Palmiter: I had that dream- All the time! And still do sometimes, although it’s been over fourteen years since I had a regular on-air gig.
The record would end, with none cued up on the other TT. No carts loaded (music or otherwise)… Mike, on, but somehow would not work (or capture my audible mutterings OR screams). Try to cue up another song on the disc that just ended- disc disappeared… Go look for more records or carts- anything! But none to be had. The DEAD AIR NIGHTMARE! (Earl Mann Has A Dream)

Geo’s Media Blog is an inside look at Radio, Music, Movies, and Life. For a sneak peek at some upcoming Blogs or to see some that you may have missed, go to Geo’s Media Blog @ GeorgeJohns.com. On Twitter @GeoOfTheRadio. Sharing and commenting is appreciated.

Geo’s Media Blog (Our Good Economy Is Good For Whom?) New for 3/02/20

Back when Barack Obama was President, he claimed that the economy was good, and Trump now says that it’s even better. My only question is, the good economy is good for whom?

Hell, when I grew up during the ’50s, the economy was much better. My Mom didn’t have to work, and my Dad bought a new car every two years. My Mom got one every three, and we built a new house every five, plus had a cabin at the lake.

Everything, including prescription drugs, was reasonably priced, and even though gas was only 20 cents a gallon, the oil barons still managed to become multi-millionaires

I believe that the economy was much better back then because it served all the people, not just a select few. Oh, and did I mention that there was also very little crime?

Hell, even the ’60s were better than now. Case in point, when I got married in the mid-sixties, I only worked part-time at a radio station and played with my band on the weekends. Not only did I have the biggest house on the block (shown above still standing after 50 years), but I also drove a brand new convertible. (shown above) What 23-year-old can do that today?

Today’s good economy must only be good for the 1% ers because I don’t see the rest of us smiling.
GEO’S LIFE-LINES

The thing I find the most amazing about living in America is that no matter what terrible things you’ve done, apologize, go to rehab, and all is forgiven. Amazing! 

Ford, The Beatles, and Jobs didn’t give us what we wanted; they gave us what they wanted us to have.

A lot of the nobodies who became somebody also turned out to be assholes because they couldn’t handle success. 

The first time your being on the earth becomes somewhat essential is when you have an impact on other people’s lives. 

Most radio GM’s version of your getting out in the community to serve the public is doing remotes at a tire store. 

If you need to get something done, give it to a person who is too busy to do it. 

A Muslim comedian recently said it best, “Hey, I’m a 7-11 Muslim, not a 9-11.” 

A leader’s first responsibility is to define the goal; his ultimate responsibility is to thank the crew for getting them there.

When I was growing up in Transcona, after walking our girlfriends home from the community club dances, my buddies and I would meet at the local Diner for a Burger before going back home. Then we didn’t?

Anyone can do a presentation to three people; it’s the thought of doing one to a hundred or so that keeps you up at night. 

Something to think about, Jesus wasn’t a Christian, Mohammad wasn’t a Muslim, and Budda wasn’t a Buddhist. Maybe we should follow who they were all following?

Rich people without rules tend to do the wrong thing.

What I like best about social media is that it exposes all the evil celebrities allowing karma to catch up with them a lot quicker.

It is so weird out there these days that I’d advise looking both ways before crossing a one-way street.

I wish Trump would stop talking and walk the talk instead.

Not having to buy into everything lame thing either party claims is the best thing about being a centrist.

Just trying harder doesn’t make bad stuff work any better.

Figuring out what you did right is a lot tougher than figuring out what you did wrong.

Is it true that Coronavirus has been listed on the Lysol can as one of the viruses it kills, for years?

COMMENTS

Patrick Stelzner: “Remember when a sales person’s job was mostly to get the money? Now they also have to figure out how to get the money to fit the system.” Amen Bro (I Felt The Earth Move)

John McQuaker: Hi George: I enjoy reading your stories. I worked at CKY FM, and then CKY 580 from 1966-1971. Worked with some of the people you name, such as Frank Roberts, Bill Grogan, George Dawes, and Embree McDermid, probably many others whose names I don’t always remember. I got into the news side in about 1970, and I think John Pierce was the news director, these days it’s hard to imagine that the big 3 AM stations in WPG (CKY, CKRC, and CJOB) each had an eight-person news team. Keep up the excellent work. (Comments)

Jim Harper: Hey George,
I love this blog-post. Especially: “Radio should stop worrying about its image and just get on with the entertainment!”I’ve learned by listening as a civilian, that when a station runs an image promo for itself, it’s just noise and another interruption. The same goes for local TV. You’re already there…you’re already engaged, you don’t need to be sold on having made a good decision. (Fear)

Buzz Barnett: RadioGeo, Travel back in time to September 2004 as Hurricane Frances approached Palm Beach & WRMF went into Emergency Broadcast mode inside a Control Room core that was wrapped tightly by thick plywood sheets put up by Ric Rieke…..Mike Calhoun prepped His coverage team after Paul Cavenaugh purchased supplies at the Publix next door on Congress Ave….baloney & bread….mayo & mustard….cheese & crackers….chips & dips (sorry, Amy)….hundreds of $$$ in booze…. it was never revealed just Who provided the soothing sweet smoke that got Us thru the 72-hours spent together as Frances churned & howled & nearly blew Our legendary house down….& it was only a warm-up as Hurricane Jeanne jumped ashore some three weeks later @ 120-mph sustained! (Hurricane Mathew)

Nat Humphries: “If what one has to say is not better than silence, then one should keep silent”- Confucius, 511 BC 
“Ask yourself if that bit you’re about to do is better than ‘Hey, Jude.’ If it’s not, play ‘Hey, Jude’”. – George Johns, 1974 AD.

Tim Moore: George, the velvet sensitivity you bring to this global malady is appreciated. Depression hides in dark corners, and I’m guessing many more suffer from it than we know. I’m so fortunate never to have known it, but thinking about friends and colleagues, like you, I can now see patterns. Life can become a forced march through a minefield if we see it that way. Some don’t have much choice. Joni Mitchell may have had this in mind in the lyrics of a long lost ballad: “Dark with darker moods is he…and not a golden prince has come, of columbines and wizardry to talk of castles in the sun. In a Bleeker Street Cafe, she found someone to love today.” (Which Way Ya Going Billy Part Deux)

Wilson Parasiuk: Hi Cami, Congratulations on your graduation – from another product of the hallowed town of Transcona. Your Dad George was a curious, courageous guy who made his way in the big wide world. But he never forgot his roots and he never forgot the little guy. Go for it. Curiosity and zest for life will make your life fuller and meaningful. Willy. (Camera Graduates)

David Wolfe: Reunion Pre-amble…George – do I qualify?  I spent three years at Fairwest – went to STAR in Milwaukee to handle the incoming police calls and keep Cat calm, went to Norfolk with the gift catalog, went to Montreal with the interactive phone, went to Kansas with the credit card affinity program, went to Transtar to oversee the Music of Your Life music rotation and keep Gary calm, and on weekends ran 10ks with you via Reg’s Mercedes (the Mercedes went to Texas). San Diego would be a good location. (Class Reunion)

Geo: Nobody represents Class better than you do, David.

Grover: I think that everything posted made a great deal of sense. But what about this? What if you added a little information? I ain’t saying your content isn’t solid, however, suppose you added a title that makes people want more? I mean, Live From The Field Geo's Media Blog is a little vanilla. You should peek at Yahoo’s home page and note how they create news headlines to grab viewers interested. You might try adding a video or a pic or two to get readers interested about everything you’ve written. In my opinion, it might make your website a little livelier.

Geo: Thanks for all the input, Grover, but “Live From The Field” is not a Blog, it’s just a picture that I’m storing for future use in a real Blog. (Live From The Field)

Margaret Mayer: Nice one Geo- and great pics of you and Ermanno, Ed, and Willy. I also enjoyed the quotes, with the exception of the elbow to women. I will keep marching every year to remind you. I think Wilma and Lilly will too. See you at the Super Bowl!
xoxoxo with Love from the Berkeley Hills, looking over the San Francisco Bay. (Making Movies)
Geo: Back at ya, Margarita.

Geo’s Media Blog is an inside look at Radio, Music, Movies, and Life. For a sneak peek at some upcoming Blogs or to see some that you may have missed, go to Geo’s Media Blog @ GeorgeJohns.com. On Twitter @GeoOfTheRadio. Sharing and commenting is appreciated.

 

 

Guitars Radio & Wild Wild Women (The End) Extra Chapter

” THE END “

A few years ago when Embree McDermid told me that they were finally putting a CKY reunion together, I was very excited. Hoping to get the word out, I checked in with Warren Cosford to see if he knew what had happened to folks like Rick Hallson. (pictured above). Rick and I had worked together at CKY when we were kids, and then I’d heard that he’d worked with Warren at CHUM in Toronto. Warren told me that he had lost touch with Rick but had heard that he suffered from depression and even had tried to commit suicide.
Like most people, I know nothing about depression, but I’ve had several brushes with it over the years. You’d be surprised to learn how many of your friends suffer from it. Unfortunately, a lot of them though do it in secret.
The first time I ever heard about depression was when I flew back to Winnipeg for a reunion of our old football team, The Transcona Nationals. 
On the morning of our big get together, Bill “Bomba” Wakeman told me that he’d be unable to come because he was depressed. Not knowing what he meant, I asked, “What the hell are you depressed about?” He said that he didn’t know.
The next time depression raised its ugly head was when my brother Reg went back to Winnipeg for a reunion with the CKRC folks. When Reg worked there, his CO-PD was Billy Gorrie who told him that he was very excited about the reunion and could hardly wait to see everybody again. Billy never showed!
A few weeks later, Reg got an email from him explaining that he had sat in the parking lot for over an hour but just couldn’t get out of the car. I along with several others got a very different kind of Email from Billy. He described how happy he finally was after so many years of torment, but as I continued to read it, I began to realize that this happy email was not going to have a happy ending. Billy thanked his many friends and co-workers for their friendship over the years, and sure enough, the email turned out to be his obituary.
I published a Blog about the hell Bomba, Billy, and Rick must have been going through. When it posted, I got all kinds of reactions from folks sharing their own experiences including a pissed off Email from my sister-in-law who has never spoken to me since. However, the most surprising reaction I got was the email I received below.

Hello George,

I think the last time we talked was 1963 when Sandy Koufax won the MVP award in that years’ World Series. Maybe that’s going back a little far, but it’s in the ballpark. I was directed to your website last night by Ken Porteous, an old CHUMer, and lifelong friend. He found news of the death of Bill Gorrie. I am shocked and saddened to hear about Bill’s demise by suicide. Bill, Ken, and I were just three on a long list of Silver Heights Collegiate grads who were drawn to radio in the early sixties, primarily by the dynamic CKY talent with jocks such as Jimmy Darrin, J. Robert Wood, Chuck Dann, and the amazing on-air execution. ‘KY was huge and working at the station for me, being barely 17, was a gift.

Bill Gorrie was kind, gentle, supportive, humorous, upbeat, flexible, honest, to name a few. That was my experience with him during the time I worked at CKRC. I guess that’s why I was so shocked at learning about his suicide. That just doesn’t fit with what I knew of him, his character, his comfortable drive and his kindness toward others. But then, someone who lives with chronic depression lives two lives. One is hidden deep within while the other part struggles to live with a sense of normalcy. I know because I have lived that. I attempted suicide three years ago. I don’t know what Bill’s issues were, but in my case, I carried my issues as far as I could–until August 28, 2008. My demons had won. I was completely surprised when I woke up 26 hours later, and it was shortly after waking up when I became somewhat lucid that I realized I was getting a second chance at life. Since then, I have used my experience and skills as a two-decade professional speaker to advocate for mental wellness and the rights of those who are affected by mental illness. (That’s a long way from executing a dynamic intro sitting on the edge of the jock chair in front of a mic in the control room.)

Could Bill have been persuaded to leave the parking lot the night of the CKRC reunion party? No one will ever know. A couple of months after my suicide attempt and release from the psych ward, I became certified in suicide intervention so that I could better understand suicide and perhaps help others in crisis. One who deals with chronic depression feels shame and a sense of hopelessness, every day. It never leaves. There is no relief. Stigma is a huge issue. Stigma is embedded in our health care system—even within the silo of mental health. I’ve seen it. I’ve experienced it. It’s there in all its ugliness. Bill’s pain is gone. May he rest in peace. What a shame. What a loss.

I did write a book about my experience with my suicide attempt. It sits in a folder on my computer. I’ve never sent it to a publisher for consideration. I’m not sure why but I had to write it for the sake of writing it. Please let me share a few lines from the book with you and your readers. “Within weeks of my release from the hospital after my suicide attempt, I attended a suicide survivor’s gathering. It’s an annual event staged for family and friends who have lost a loved one to suicide. Speakers addressed an audience of about 150, relating their personal stories: anguish, guilt, fear, hurt, anger, frustration, pain; stories that rang so loud it was deafening; Oh how they wish they could turn back the clock and perhaps change an outcome. As the ceremony continued, I became so profoundly aware of what I had done, as never before, and even in my survival, how I had hurt the people who loved and cared for me. I stood in a back corner of the room watching and listening to the stories one after another, trying to keep my crumbling composure in check. It was so hard to be there. As I walked away after the final prayer from the podium, I decided to write my book. I need to write it for my own sake: fifty years of dealing with my personal demons had almost cost me my existence. It had to end. If telling my story helps even a single human being from taking that final step—suicide, then it is worth every word.”

Like so many others, I will remember Bill Gorrie.
Take care, George.
Rick Hallson
Winnipeg

 

 

 

Guitars Radio & Wild Wild Women. (Thank You) Chapter Extra

The Writing of my book “Guitars Radio & Wild Wild Women” has stirred up a lot of old radio memories but what I remember most are the moments when some very special people who changed my life so this next to last chapter is dedicated to them with much love.
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My biggest benefactor was Jim Hilliard pictured here with me at the CKY Christmas party along with Barbara, Jack Wells, Flicka and Lana.
When Jim and I first met he was the newly appointed Program Director of CKY in Winnipeg and ended up being the one responsible for most of my success. When he gave me the break of a lifetime by hiring me to be his National PD of Fairbanks Broadcasting we had a great ride together and the best part of it all is … We ain’t done yet.
63503_10151827117384307_192927957_nThe man needed to be thanked first though is Mark Parr whom I knew before I met Jim. It was Mark who actually got me started in radio by teaching me how to run the board one day out of the blue then drove management crazy until they hired me as a part time board op. Without out his persuading me to give running the board a shot I doubt very much that I would have had a radio career.

11830877_10154065896314307_613367014_n11801904_10154067422824307_1939011784_nNext up is Daryl (“B”) and Chuck Riley (pictured) because Chuck taught me how to do great production and Daryl talked management into giving me the Music Director’s title when he left for Vancouver.

11781601_10154048231124307_9067135727541813866_nBefore Jim had left CKY for Indianapolis he’d made me the Production Director so now that I also had the Music Director’s title George Dawes our midday jock (pictured) used both of my titles to get me an interview with some folks he knew at CKOM in Saskatoon where I soon became their new Program Director.
67943_10151829946124307_1870727631_nBecoming a PD was good news but the bad news was, I didn’t know what the hell I was doing.

I’m told that a person is usually the answer and that person turned out to be Gary (Vidler) Russell who also ended up becoming a life long friend.(pictured with me) Without his help my whole radio career might have ended right then.

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Here’s to Roger Klein who made me sound so smart in Sudbury Ottawa and Toronto where along with Keith Elshaw (photo) we created the first ever AC station.

190783_135273026543977_197894_nSpeaking of Toronto I can’t ever leave out Keith Dancy and Ted Rogers (pictured) who managed to lure me to Toronto from CFRA in Ottawa where ratings wise things were going real well.
They also had the balls to let me launch a brand new experimental format on CFTR which changed not only my whole life but probably a few others too including theirs.

320086_10151827089544307_580782341_n1When Jim Hilliard hired me to be his National PD I put my new format on KVIL in Dallas where Ron Chapman along with his Texas Hall Of Fame Staff took it to legendary status (Ron pictured with me after I inducted him into his third Radio Hall of Fame) Not only did the huge success of KVIL launch an entirely new career for me, it also allowed me my childhood dream of living in California to come true.

1453302_10153297953614307_8840166964075773340_nMy first priority at Fairbanks though was WIBC/WNAP in Indy where I was back working with Chuck Riley and Gary Todd again whom I’d worked with in Winnipeg. We had an incredible line up there like Fred Heckman Lou Palmer Tom Cochran Bob Lamey Jerry Baker Buster Bodine and one of the most creative guys I ever worked with, Cris Conner who made my first few years in America a pleasure (Cris pictured with me at his induction into the Radio Hall of Fame)

10373492_10153384414099307_5927178104755756993_nI’ve gotta thank sales guru Dick Yancey (photo) who convinced me that if I could just figure out a way to creatively tie sales into all of our promotions, wonderful things like my first Mercedes would soon happen.

581109_10151918938284307_880147102_n2Thank you attorney John King (photo) for getting our promotions past the FCC so well that when Dick Yancey syndicated “The Magic Ticket” it was stamped … FCC approved!

67590_10151827053899307_1043893693_nHow could I forget Norm Wilkens and his gifted artist Lotsy who created so many of our award winning billboards.(Billboard of the year)

10888560_10153433858284307_5479790178253898376_nI’ll never forget the first time I met Jack McCoy which resulted in me getting to run a lot of his great promotions first. Jack was also my secret voice on many of them but most importantly he taught me the “math” of ratings and was kind enough to spread my name across America.(pictured with me on a magazine cover).
1924268_1071944722915_1700_nHere’s to my smarter than me brother Reg who managed to combine a few of our better promotions and figure a way to put them up on the internet which made him real well.
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When KVIL exploded I became a consultant and met Reid Reker (pictured) who was the operations manager of KOGO/KPRI which was my first client.
Ed and Tom Shadek who owned the stations also owned one in San Antonio where they allowed me and Reid to launch the first ever “CLASS FM”. KLLS soon became a big hit and before long Jim West had it on 40 stations and I thank God that we had a few talented guys like Cat Simon, Jason Williams, Bruce Buchanan, Al Gardner, Harry Nelson and of course my old buddy Bill Gardner who had been at KVIL for its birth and not only won personality of year in America during his tenure there but also helped us out in San Antonio. These guys thankfully not only totally understood the “Class” concept but were also able to hit the road quickly to launch a few others for us.
10400331_1087704719644_4721943_nHey how big do you supposes those cajones on Toney Brooks are. (pictured) When I first met Toney he was running a chain of very successful rock stations all over the country for Sandusky but gave me two of them to put “Class FM” on. It turned out that Toney was right because KLSI in Kansas City and KLSY in Seattle went on to very big things under the great leadership of Steve Dinkel and Dana Horner.

405623_10151896018809307_441721725_n

Accountants were a bigger part of my life than I realized and Cindy Adair along with Ric Hindes (pictured) covered my financial ass more than a few times but before him came Roger Snowdon.
After doing my taxes one year Roger shocked me the news that I had just became a millionaire. (Rog do you still have that Mill) In San Diego there was Jerry Perkins who kept the Feds off my back but it was Bill Yde though who talked me into buying Fairwest which led to our being able to purchase our own radio stations, what a mind boggling experience that was for a lad from Transcona.

1391957_10152288632444307_1679316170_nI can’t ever thank my old buddy Bob Christy (pictured) enough for all his help and all the fun we’ve had while working together on a few projects both in Indy and Boston where he took the lead on our launching of WKLB, Boston’s first ever Country Station.

10176231_10152811775364307_6925602966885010106_n Hey Mark Hubbard (pictured) what a joy it was traveling with you for all the years you were running Fairmont which allowed me to work with good friend Jim Harper in Detroit.
Thank you for not only introducing me to an up and coming new talk show host by the name of Rush Limbaugh but also being smart enough to put him on the air in the “land of entitlement” against my better judgement.

969933_10151896021274307_2005995881_nTim Reever (pictured with me) taught me not only how to be fast but he also showed me how you can take events to a whole new level while still having fun and telling stories.

305959_10151825017259307_1307603411_n2I can’t forget my favorite lawyer Betsy Cameron who not only got me involved with all of Joe Amaturo’s stations but also got me into my beautiful condo in West Palm Beach.

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I better wrap this up before I begin weeping but first I must raise my glass of a fine Sonoma County red to the folks in Santa Rosa, Gordon Zlot, Tom Skinner, and Brent Farris.
(all pictured in Palm Springs along with me and Bobby Cole whom I once traveled the nation with back in the day when he was the V/P of Programming for Fairmont Communications) KZST became one of my first clients over 25 years ago and I’m very proud to say they still are today and I’m looking forward to seeing them all once again in a few weeks. Thank you for great radio and great fun guys. Hey I can’t leave out the folks who help me almost everyday like Matt Greeney and Rich Stevens. Matt is my favorite techie who actually taught me how to e mail which led me to start writing. Sorry that I put your name out there Matt, stand by for some angry responses. Hey Rich thanks for designing my Blog and also for fixing it when I screw it all up as I constantly do.
There are a lot of other people who have helped me along the way and they know who they are and hopefully they already know how thankful I am to them but this chapter is already longer than “War and Peace” so I’ve got to stop somewhere but I can’t stop without thanking the ladies in my life first, Lana in Winnipeg, Sharon in Toronto, Linda in Indy, Jamie in San Diego, Kari in West Palm Beach, and Laura in Miami. These women were responsible for making my journey so worthwhile not to mention very exciting, but that’s another story for another day. geo
 

 

Guitars & Radio & Wild Wild Women (I Started A Joke) Chapter LVII Edited 3/17/22 (57)

Living in South Florida
and doing well
As WRMF continued
to give ’em all hell.

I’ve been lucky enough to have worked with some incredible talent over the years. Jeff n’ Jer, Martin Milner, Rick Moranis, Jim Harper, Shotgun Tom, Don Bleu, Delilah, Jack McCoy, Craig Walker, Earl Mann, Jimmy Darin, The Magic Christian, Fred Heckman, Ron Chapman, Cris Conner, Chuck Riley, Bob Christy, Brent Farris, Cat Simon, Jo Jo Kincaid, Tom Lewis, Loren & Wally, Bill Gardner, Robert Murphy, Lou Palmer, Paul Page, Chuck Knapp, Ken LeMann, Buster Bodine, Reid Reker, Tom Cochran, Doc Harris, Bruce Murdock, Roger Klein, Daryl ‘B,’ Ken Singer, Cat Simon, Stirling Faux, Gary Russell, Keith Elshaw, Greg Tantum, Woody Cooper, and Sandy Hoyt, to name just a few.
Oh, did I mention that most of them are in the Radio Hall Of Fame?

However, even though I only worked with her for a short time at WRMF in South Florida, one of my all-time favorites was Jo Myers. (pictured above)
Unfortunately for me, Jo had a book brewing inside her called “Good To Go,” and before long, she was gone.

As I’ve said in earlier chapters, I left San Diego in the early ’90s for a project in Boston that took much longer than we expected.
Then when Hilliard sold the Boston station in the mid-’90, II fell in love with a psychotherapist from West Palm Beach, so I moved to South Florida where I’ve been ever since.

Jo, whom we hired out of Denver for WRMF, is one of those rare individuals who always seem to end up in the middle of the strangest goings-on.
I’m not sure if Jo enjoys having all that weirdness around her, but her descriptions of it are hilarious, and they make great radio.

Our plan was to team her up with a host whose main job was to ask her what she did last night and then get the hell out of the way.
Hilliard and I thought that we’d found the perfect guy but somewhere between our hiring him and his arrival, he decided that he wanted to be the funny one. Unfortunately, it never occurred to him that he just wasn’t funny.

Jim and I loved Jo’s act so much that we broke our “Cardinal Rule,” “You can do anything you want on the radio except live with your mistakes.”
Oh, and you also can’t force chemistry either, but sadly, we kept on trying anyway.

Jo had come to Florida first so she could find the perfect neighborhood for her family to live in.
Her being here alone gave us time to have dinner now and then, where we’d discuss how we wanted the morning show to proceed.

Our concept was the age-old premise of man versus woman except we were going to use humor to exploit it.
While Jo and I were eating dinner in Palm Beach discussing all this one night, I told her that I had a joke that exemplified the difference between men and women.

“Men,” I said, “All Laugh at this joke whereas women don’t even smile at it.
Jo claimed that she’d probably laugh because she wasn’t very feminine.

At the joke’s end Jo proved to be a lot more girly than she thought she was when she said to me, “George, not only is that joke not funny, it’s stupid.”
When I claimed that had she been a guy, she’d be on the floor howling, she said her husband John would never laugh at a joke that was that juvenile.

“Ok,” I said, “When husband John gets here we’ll all go out for dinner if he doesn’t laugh at my joke dinner’s on me but if he does, dinners on you.”

About a month later when John showed up, the three of us went for dinner at Chuck & Harold’s in Palm Beach.
I loved Chuck and Harolds because it was very casual it was also elegant and they even had a live Trio playing light jazz. .

At some point during dinner, Jo, excused herself to go to the ladies’ room and while sitting there chatting with John, I was surprised to hear that the trio had added a torch singer to their act.
The singer was not only excellent, she was surprisingly was singing a very naughty version of “Making Whoopee.”

Then, when I turned around to watch her, I was shocked to discover that it was Jo who was singing.
Not only was she singing very seductively, but she was also slithering sensuously all over the top of the grand piano.

When I asked John if he was aware that it was his wife who was singing, he said, “I don’t pay any attention to it because it only encourages her.”
When Jo finally returned to the table, I asked her if this would be an appropriate time to share my special joke with John? She just laughed and said that she’d forgotten all about my silly joke and that I should just go for it.

So John, I say, “A guy goes into the Doctor’s office and when he checks in with the receptionist she tells him that the Doctor’s expecting him so he should go right in.
When he was seated in one of the small examination rooms the Doctor comes in with a worried look on his face.

Ok, he says, “I’ve got some good news, and I’ve got some bad news, which would you like first?”
When the guy asks for the bad news first, the Doctor tells him that he has a rare, incurable disease, so he needs to get his affairs in order as quickly as possible.

Sitting there in complete shock the guy mumbles something about needing to get another opinion.
The Doctor says that he totally understands but then says, “Know this though, I’ve already taken your case to whoever else you’re going to see, and they all agree with me that your time is almost up.

The guy, shaking his head in disbelief, finally asks, “What the hell is the good news?”
The Doctor replies, “When you checked in, did you notice how beautiful the blonde with big tits sitting out front was?” When the guy nods yes, the Doctor proudly says, “I’m fucking her!”

As I expected, John exploded with laughter and Jo looked at him with disgust.
Later on while we’re sharing a dessert, once again John breaks out laughing and when Jo asks him what the hell he’s laughing at now? He says that he was thinking about my joke again and I’m thinkin’ that he may still be stuck on the couch.