Monday, February 28, 2011
"REALLY? You're STILL DOING RADIO?"
Its a question I get often enough it benefited me to examine why this is.
Answer: I love radio. I love the whole conceptual IDEA of broadcast radio to the brick and mortar established studios from which the magic comes. I segued from teen to twenties immersed in broadcasting. It was my first professionally claimed affinity in this version of our society.
When I first became interested in being the guy on the radio, I was emulating others who had managed to sit in that chair before me. Then, the popular DJs were fresh out of the 50s and barging with enthusiastic gusto into the new generation's world, looked like they were much younger than my other favorites from the established pop media voices, comedians, maybe all the way into their creaking mid-30s. Like John Kennedy, young. Closer to my status and representing all the music I recognized as mine.
When I started out in professional broadcast radio, the typical DJ "look" was horned rim glasses, maybe a cardigan sweater, slacks and hip shows like white bucks or penny loafers. The Van Dyke goatee and mustachio were ubiquitous, as was the wacky, zany, rhyming speech patterns. Looking back, they looked like hip nerds.
I went right out and acquired an appropriate sweater, slacks and never stopped buying cool shoes.
I saved up my money and laid it all down for MY OWN EARPHONES. I began collecting movie instrumental albums when no one else had anything but 45 RPM discs, exciting and emotional without lyrics to interfere, that I could use under promotional announcements.
And I crossed the threshold into the fourth, and other dimensions. Once out of my three dimensional restraints, ANYTHING was possible.
What was most magical of all to me was the pictures that seemed to accompany the audio. They were individual for each listener. To accomplish that feat on TV or on film, I would have to have an incredible budget. But, when I needed a few bulldozers, an airplane or a fancy race car, money was not the problem. Rather, the task was to comb through sound effect LPs for the sound -or- make your own.
Then, suddenly the music amped up, was imported from England and the entire radio carnival I had joined changed into a more exciting, colorful non-stop performance. Listeners would be as keenly focused on the next Dylan song, the next Beach Boys masterpiece, the upcoming magical mystery Beatles updates - as we were delivering the information.
We young DJs were so proud if our station was one of those that had the courage and budget to run with a live person 24 hours a day! A never-ending story, a mobius audio trip that spiraled ever-upward in such a manner as to let us all feel its pulse as radio actually evolved.
Having experienced, in my radio times, the refreshing nourishment and awe of the Continuous, Living, Creative, Imaginative, nourishing and loving imagination, the unending supply, of course I'm still involved in commercial broadcast radio. It is the audio platform upon which I build my other activities such as online studies and social media marketing. It is the background without which there would be no foreground, the stillness required to her sound, the universal vibration, the Buddhist may call KYO.
See you in the air this week. I'm filling in for one of the regulars who sometimes gets a case of stay-at-home just so she can listen to Bobby Ocean again.