Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Life Lessons (A Never Ending Series)

Back in the mid-70's when I did mornings at Owens Enterprises' KUZZ/Bakersfield, I heard "you're good, but you're no Johnny Kaye" at almost every appearance I made.

I made a lot of appearances, so I heard it a lot and I have to admit that the competitive side of me got a bit jealous each time.

Being OM/PD as well and extremely curious to hear Johnny, I organized a "KUZZ Reunion Weekend" and contacted as many of the former air personalities to come back and do a few hours on air over a weekend to kick off a major station promotion.  (It is impressive how many long-timers from way back then remain with KUZZ today!)

When I reached Kaye by phone, I found him to be extremely gracious, friendly, supportive and cooperative.

He did his shift for us and - I had to admit - he was simply great.  Listeners were right.  Johnny Kaye, a complete professional, knocked my socks off!

Hard-earned lesson:  learn from history.

Don't let your ego deny the previous people and events their share of the credit for what built the radio station where you work, helping to construct the platform you make use of now.

Attain higher heights by standing on the shoulders who folks who preceded you.

You can't get very high by stepping on other people.

1 comment:

Tom Taylor NOW said...

It’s no longer the “Gerry House studio” at Nashville’s “Big 98” WSIX – it belongs to Bobby Bones.

When House retired from the Clear Channel facility just before Christmas 2010, the station put up a plaque at the entrance to the air studio, honoring him.

Now it’s gone, removed within the last two weeks by somebody who apparently didn’t want to be reminded of House. We don’t know who did the deed, and it’s certainly not against Tennessee law. But it fits in with the mindset around the WSIX-based Bobby Bones syndicated show – a generational thing that Bones himself expressed in a recent series of controversial tweets (September 4 NOW). Among other things, he said “Going to need a lot of old people in this industry to retire or die before the Nashville ‘guard’ lets something new get recognized.”

That was after he failed to be nominated for a CMA award, and he said he was “upset with the antiquated system” used by the Country Music Awards. Having the Gerry House identity removed (by somebody) from his studio seems to fit the new mindset. Bobby also tweeted that “I have the biggest countdown show in the country and have changed the culture of country radio in a simple 18 months.”

That indeed didn’t go down well with the old guard – of which 22-year WSIX morning man Gerry House was a member.