Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Radio Daze


Yours truly, the broadcast legend, on air at WIRE 100.9 FM mono 3000 watt blowtorch, Lebanon, Indiana. 

During my shift anyway...the only country music station to broadcast The Who, Led Zeppelin, and the Rolling Stones. 

Weekend nights, part-time gigs you can pretty much do what you want when nobody listens...
"WIRE Country 101" was old school radio.   

Housed in an aging, one-story concrete block building near a Farm Bureau Co-Op, the carpeted 'sound-proofed' walls of the broadcast and production studios almost negated the roar of the Terra Gators and other heavy farming machinery that rumbled by every day.

The station had just one consumer grade CD player, 2 ancient turn-tables, 8-track "cart" machines, and a reel-to-reel. You can see the vintage analog board.   It all worked perfectly.



The station signed off at midnight, and I had to turn off the transmitter! 

I was board operator for Indianapolis Indians baseball.  We were their "flagship" station, and we got the play-by-play over the phone!  There was an incident once during a game when I missed a commercial break cue and ended doing make-ups while the play-by-play guy droned on.  He got pissed when I told him what I did.  That'll teach me to admit my mistakes.  If I had kept my mouth shut, he'd had never known.

I was board operator for the 1992 Indy 500 and Colts NFL football games...which were satellite fed. Wow!

I can remember a time I was reading news copy on air about a local hog farm burning down and the loss of livestock.  This is seriously big news in a farming community.  Something about the story was worded in such a way that I found it highly amusing, and I started to giggle and laugh uncontrollably.  I couldn't stop laughing, and I had to turn the mic off and go to commercial.

I was a bad DJ.

John Dotas was the owner/GM. He was REALLY old school. Former Korean War Marine, and a great set of pipes (radio voice). A cool guy, and I appreciated the opportunity he gave me, but he told me he didn't want another "Bob and Tom," and he ignored me when I told him I wanted to do more for the station. 

So I quit.  With no notice.  On air.  At the end of my last shift.  Soon thereafter, the studio telephone was ringing off the hook.

I didn't answer it.

Thus endeth my short-lived radio career.

Radio people are very strange.

1 comment:

  1. That is a good story, Zoomie...

    The guy in the pics... He looks strangely familiar. He looks like a guy I ran into out in the woods someplace about a hundred years ago.

    I hope you're doing well. Happy Thanksgiving.


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