This morning a Facebook entry brought a flood of memories. My friend John mentioned how when he hears the song “Sweet City Woman” by the Stampededers, he thinks of me. That is because I liked the song. Actually, I may be the first, but certainly one of the first people to play that in the U.S.
I used to often listen to the radio and the DJs I heard were out of Philiadelpha and New York. Cousin Brucie on WABC andthe DJs on WIBG were popular.
When I went to private school, I got interested in the radio station and soon was a DJ and helped build a transmitter.
I went to college in South West Virginia and started working just over the state line at WREM radio in Jenkins Kentucky. I attended a couple of radio programming conferences, one in Nashville and one near Vancouver.
In Nashville I spoke with ledgendary Roger Miller and we had a mini conceert by Kris Kristopherson (my friend encouraged him to play in the hotel bar).
The trip to the Canadian conference was a trip! I drove from southwest Virginia to Toronto in my Camaro and met up with Steve, a fellow DJ. From there we drove his car across Canada to Vancouver, made a right and up to Squamish to the ski resort. Our meeting was to be held in the lodge up on the mountain. We boarded the gondola car and got halfway up. Then we were confronted with a ski lift. Being in business attire, it was hard to get on a ski lift with no skis, but even harder to not be able to ski off. Michale Nesmith (Monkies) was there as were others.
We were given copies of some new releases, the aforementioned “Sweet City Woman” and “Signs by the Five Man Electrical Band. I took these records back to Kentucky that week and put them in play. It was my understanding that they had not yet been in distribution via mail and thus being hand-carried, I may have been one of the few U.S. DJs to start playing the record. Many of the larger stations had a program Director who would decide if a song fit the stations personality. Our station had no such restrictions.
My friend who brought this all up, was also a DJ. As I remember, he worked at a country station in Richmond and 2 stations daily in DC (one country and one easy listening).
I could go on with memories however I have farming to do today. I am outside the sphere of almost every radio station unless I use a cellphone or internet connection. Still, when working outside I have an MP3 player with music playing.
Music, it does a body good!