Once upon a time… in fact on this very day way back in 1974… I found myself hanging out in the control room of a student staffed, 5 watt FM college radio station. Within minutes of hanging up my winter coat and F.C.C. License, I had logged in and parked my butt on the padded swivel chair behind an audio board… an audio mixer that was lit up like a Christmas Tree.
While a layperson would’ve felt a bit overwhelmed, I was already trained to recognize the general layout of the controls. I quickly acclimated and donned a set of headphones to cue up what was to become the first song of my very first ever, live, On The Air radio show.
While waiting for the going off duty DJ’s final song to track to it’s conclusion, my eyes were glued, intently to the spinning vinyl LP and the sweep hand of an analogue clock. At 5 o’clock p.m., sharp, I opened my microphone to announce the station ID and introduce myself to my audience. Within mere seconds of my engaging turntable #1… Greg Lake began belting out this opening lyric…
“Welcome back my friends to the show that never ends…”
Wow, what a trip that show had been. Off to my right I had access to a record library, which boasted multiple thousands of (more or less alphabetized) shelved albums… had complete freedom to program any music my little ol’ heart desired.
At that point, it didn’t even matter to me, in the least, that this was a non-paying gig.
My only regrets? Contrary to vocalist Lake’s sentiments… by the end of the week, my show did end… you see… I was merely a substitute DJ during winter break… filling in only when my Program Director found gaps (a.k.a. “dead air”) in his broadcast schedule.
But… it was a blast while it lasted.
The four tracks I’ve selected for today’s Blogcast are a blast from my past… songs culled from my first program’s playlist… beginning, appropriately enough, with that 5 p.m. leadoff Emerson, Lake & Palmer recording.
Thank you in advance for indulging me as I relive this experience… as I go rockin’ down memory lane.
Emerson, Lake & Palmer ~ Karn Evil 9 / 1st Impression (Part 2)
REO Speedwagon ~ Being Kind Can Hurt Someone Sometimes
Stanley Clarke ~ Vulcan Princess
Chick Corea & Return To Forever ~ Beyond The 7th Galaxy
If you like what you heard, stay tuned for my future Blogcasts.