When I was a teenager in high school I knew what I wanted to do when I grew up – I wanted to be a disk jockey. And sure enough, when I got myself tossed from college (or the ‘accelerated dismissal program’ as I like to call it), radio is where I went.
It was a reasonably good career working at some of the classic stations of the AM radio era, being program director of what was known as an ‘underground station,’ and doing mornings in Philadelphia. I miss it all the time. Any time I run into a radio person here in Connecticut I offer to do some fill-in work.
They smile, but seldom call. I’ve done a few talk shows on WTIC and it was like a fix to an addict.
Today I had the opportunity to be on the radio and in a situation I had never experienced before. I was one of three guests on a Sunday morning public affairs show which was taped for Star 99.9 and WPLR.
This all has to do with my involvement in the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. I have been their celebrity spokesperson for 11 years – though I’m not sure what that job actually entails. JDRF is a wonderful organization. I feel touched every time I do something on their behalf. And, their Walk to Cure is coming up in early October.
The program was taped at the Cox Broadcasting studios in Milford. It was the most corporate radio facility I had ever been in. Everything was neat and clean. The equipment looked like it was all working. There were no slovenly disk jockeys yelling at the top of their voices!
It seemed too sterile to really be radio.
The station’s lunch room seemed sanitary, as if you could eat there. How is this possibly radio? Certainly it is not radio as I knew it, where your clothing choices were always promotional t-shirts and jeans.
Every time I write about it, I wonder why I miss radio so much… and when I’ll be back on?
4 thoughts on “Back on the Radio”
I love your website. You seem to have a typo in a line tonight. I only mention it because your writing is always perfect. I have learned many a new word reading your blog. Anyway, the line is:
It seemed to sterile to really be radio.
Maybe another o?
The grammar police just caught you! Shall we attempt to raise bail money?
Sadly Geoff, the days of radio being there as a source of inspiration or fun for the listener are long gone! We live in the days of the big corporation now, where money is the driving force for running a radio station, and the station itself is just a by product of the means to earn money!
I worked in radio for ten years as a freelancer, and in the early (and I will add most profitable) days, the production team were given a relatively free reign… It was fun, productive, and something to be proud of in a quirky way.
Anyway, past tense… I’ve gone and got a real job now 😉
Someone wiser than me said the Golden Age is always in the past. I still miss it.