Tuesday, March 29

Simple Lessons

Here is how the fairy tale goes... You are at a show.  Someone onstage notices you in the crowd.  You are plucked from said crowd to go backstage.  You two talk after the show.  And you live happily ever after.  It really happened to someone I met recently.  She even moved to Seattle from Detroit to live happily ever after with her drummer.  She told me about it over the weekend.  I told her I saw his band open for Metallica in the summer of 1994.  And one of their songs is on KJRW.

Friday, March 25

KJRW TOP TEN LIST

  1. Girl Is On My Mind - Black Keys
  2. Six Pack - Black Flag
  3. Stay Away - Nirvana
  4. Supermassive Black Hole - Muse
  5. Porch - Pearl Jam
  6. London Calling - Clash
  7. Ball and Chain - Social Distortion
  8. So What'cha Want - Beastie Boys
  9. I Wanna Be Sedated - Ramones
  10. March of the Pigs - Nine Inch Nails
This week's Top Ten remained almost the same as last week's.  However, Nine Inch Nails makes an appearance.  I still cannot get over that Trent Reznor is an Academy Award Winner now.  He looked so proper at the Oscars with short hair and a suit.

Friday, March 18

KJRW TOP TEN LIST

Six Pack finally got knocked out of the number one spot.  It was the Black Keys replacing Black Flag at the top.  Truthfully, there are not many new bands that really grab my attention, but I like the Black Keys' bluesy alt-rock.  How about you?
  1. Girl Is On My Mind - Black Keys
  2. Six Pack - Black Flag
  3. Supermassive Black Hole - Muse
  4. Porch - Pearl Jam
  5. I Wanna Be Sedated - Ramones
  6. Kiss Them for Me - Siouxsie and the Banshees
  7. London Calling - Clash
  8. Ball and Chain - Social Distortion
  9. Stay Away - Nirvana
  10. So What'cha Want - Beastie Boys

Monday, March 14

CRAZY OKAY

I visited CBS Radio Seattle today.  It was both strange and familiar at once.  It has been about a year since I was there last, and that time I got no further than the lobby.  This time, I made my way through KMPS and KZOK, catching up with people I had not seen in a long time.  It has been two years and four months since I was employed there.

I mentioned my beginnings at KZOK in an earlier post.  About a month after moving to Washington State from Massachusetts, I began an internship in the production department.  Shortly after that I became the afternoon show producer.  I also sometimes produced the morning and midday shows.  When the afternoon show host became the program director, he made me his assistant.

Over 15 years, I saw many ownership and personnel changes.  The first change in ownership resulted in my first on-air shift.  All the full-time "personalities" had to attend a workshop.  I got to fill-in on a few overnight shifts.  I remember being amazed that someone responded to something I had said by sending me a fax.  I still get a little thrill from listener response.  Now it is through a "Shout Out" on the KJRW station page at live365.com.

People always want to know which rock stars I met in the KZOK studios.  The nicest guys were Paul Rodgers, Graham Nash, and Julian Lennon.  Ann and Nancy Wilson were there enough times that I was finally comfortable around them and not star-struck.  Other studio guests I met were:  Grace Slick, Ian Anderson, Ray Davies, Nick Mason, Roger McGuinn, Mickey Thomas, Sam Andrew, Roger Hodgson, Peter Green, and Donny Osmond.  I am probably forgetting somebody.  I also got to meet all the members of Aerosmith backstage before a show in the Key Arena as a member of the KZOK staff.
 
That part was cool, but the thing I enjoyed the most while at KZOK was helping to create a show - from constructing a playlist of songs to producing a funny station identification piece, and making them flow together.  After two years of not being able to have that creative outlet, a close friend told me about live365.com, and KJRW was born.

Will I ever return to "CRAZY OKAY"?  We'll see...

Friday, March 11

KJRW TOP TEN LIST

I think this week's list is a good representation of the 'KJRW sound' -- although, Joan Jett only makes a cameo at the number 10 spot.  What do you think?
  1. Six Pack - Black Flag
  2. Zero - Smashing Pumpkins
  3. Porch - Pearl Jam
  4. Stay Away - Nirvana
  5. Rise Above - Black Flag
  6. Pretty Vacant - Sex Pistols
  7. London Calling - Clash
  8. I Wanna Be Sedated - Ramones
  9. Rock Star - Hole
  10. New Radio - Bikini Kill
Vote for your favorite songs on KJRW.  Click on the > in the blue box to the right to listen.  If you like a song, give it a thumbs up.  Maybe it will make it onto next week's Top 10 list.

Friday, March 4

KJRW TOP TEN LIST

Not much change in the Top 10 this week.  Very Seattle-centric.  Here are the songs getting the thumbs up:
  1. Six Pack - Black Flag
  2. Scentless Apprentice - Nirvana
  3. Porch - Pearl Jam
  4. Zero - Smashing Pumpkins
  5. Stay Away - Nirvana
  6. Zeplin Song - Courtney Love
  7. Rock Star - Hole
  8. I Wanna Be Sedated - Ramones
  9. London Calling - Clash
  10. Ball and Chain - Social Distortion
What do you think of this list?  Which songs should be in the Top Ten?

Wednesday, March 2

Internal Affairs

A long, long time ago, the way into the radio world was through internships.  You could receive experience, college credit, and even pay if you were really lucky.  I never got paid for my internships, but I did turn one into a job.

The first station I interned for was WICN, Public Radio for Central New England.  I spent one semester there, but I cannot remember much of what I did.  It was mostly paperwork at a desk.  I fought the urge to nap while listening to the classical music eminating from the on-air studio.  Don't get me wrong - I enjoy Beethoven and Bach, but it was hard to stay awake in that environment after spending most of the day in class.

Then, there was WVBF in Boston.  I pulled CDs for Sunny Joe White in the evenings.  He was allegedly a recovering addict.  On my first night there, he handed me a hundred dollar bill to pick up a package for him.  I was relieved to find it was his dinner.

I gave up that internship after a short time because I had the opportunity to go to WZLX in Boston.  I worked with many talented people:  Annalisa, Mike Coleman, Anne Cody, Chuck Nowlin and others.  At first, I just called people randomly out of the phonebook to ask them survey questions.  Later, I answered the request line, got prize winners, and did promotional events.  The best part was being on some morning show bits where I portrayed Chelsea Clinton and Suzanne Somers.

The last internship was at KZOK in Seattle.  I spent a few afternoons a week, recording commercials from reels of tape onto carts, which were like 8-track tapes.  Within a couple of months, I became the afternoon producer for Steve Slaton.  When he was hired as the progam director of the station, he made me his assistant.  And I stayed the Assistant Program Director of KZOK until the end of 2008.  More about that in another post on another day...