Tuesday, July 29, 2014

my first radio job!

me in 1950's
...some of the crazy things that happen in radio.

...My first job was at our one and only station...WCRA Effingham, Illinois 1952-53 while still in high school.
My first “hero” for on the air work was a guy named Curt Bradley.  
He had a great voice when he talked normally but like so many broadcasters when he went on the air it was very effected.  Like day and night you might say.
Good thing I never tried to emulate him in that.
Curt was messing with a very pretty preacher’s wife...which caught my attention.  I think attractiveness to women probably was one of the prime motivators in me doing radio work rather than riding the back of a blacktop machine which my Dad suggested.
I worked everyday including Sunday mornings.   
On Sundays...we had big plastic discs with religious programs and I’d put one on the air and head for the drugstore across the street to get my coffee and doughnuts.  One time I was waiting for my goodies when I heard the needle stick on the disc. (they always had the station on their speaker system).  I rushed back to the studio and up the stairs and into the control room and faded the pot on the minister who was stuck on one word and picked the needle up and put it down just a bit further on the disc and all was well.
The boss...great guy named Don Grantham...never said a thing about all that so I guess he wasn’t listening.  Thank goodness!
We had a LIVE country band come in every Saturday morning to do a show and they often let me sing along with them.  That was fun.
So my job was to “sign on” the station at 6AM each day...play big disc programs and some records and do some news.  Then I would head to high school for my daily classes and about 4PM I’d be back to “ride the board’ on more recorded progams...until our required “sign off” which was at sundown.
Then before I left I had to empty the wastebaskets...sweep the floor...and a couple of others thing before locking up.
I did that seven days a week and was paid about $25.00 a week!
Cheap slave labor but I loved it.

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