Tell us a bit about your early days. Where was home and who
were some of the influences that made you decide to make radio
Home originally was Boston. We lived at several places around
the city - I was born in Jamaica Plain, and we later lived
in Arlington and Somerville. I attended my first year of high
school at Somerville High and the summer following it we moved
to North Jersey - Bloomfield. My last 2 years were at Bloomfield
High where I graduated in 1958. I enrolled at Rutgers as a
Journalism major (New Brunswick) and commuted daily from my
folks house. By then they'd bought a place in Clifton. I had
always enjoyed listening to radio, but never gave it a thought
as a career. At Rutgers a friend of mine who was an engineer
at the college station, WRSU, talked me into auditioning for
an opening that had just come up doing a weekend show called
Knightlife, named after the Scarlet Knight Rutgers
mascot. I auditioned, got the spot, and immediately fell in
love with the business. I left college after 3 months and
took some odd jobs while I concentrated on getting into the
business. Finally I was hired at WPAZ in Pottstown, PA where
I did the morning show. After 6 months I moved on to WHTG
in Eatontown, NJ and 6 months later to WATR in Waterbury.
Major influences in the early days were Peter Tripp, Alan
Freed, and many others.
Q: In the early 1960s WAVZ had the same Roy Ross jingle package
that WDRC used. Were they using that on WAVZ when you
were there? What shift were you doing?
I believe that's right, as I recall. I first did 10PM to 2AM,
then after about a month they moved me to 10AM to 3PM. After
around 6 months, the WDRC opening came up.
How did your hiring at DRC come about; were you recruited
or did you apply? Any memories of the audition process?
I had been in touch with Charlie
Parker on a fairly regular basis since my Waterbury days.
He liked my work and had said several times that he'd like
to see me on staff. When Kurt
Russell left, he called and offered me the shift. I thought
about it for roughly 2 milliseconds and accepted.
I believe you were the last hire under the Friendly Five
Landry 5-10AM, Jerry
Bishop doing a split from 10A-noon and 3-6PM; you from
noon till 3 and 6-8PM; then Jim
Raynor from 8PM-1AM).
Yes, I was. The Swinging Six came along shortly after.