With Bob Mathers
From the time I waddled in front of a TV with dragging diaper (most likely a full one) to watch commercials and then walk out of the room when the show resumed (true story, courtesy of brother Walt. He was there. He should know), I always wanted to be in broadcasting.
After graduating high school in Baltimore in 1974, my travels took me to Incirlik, AFB in Turkey where I served as a Computer Operator but through a remarkable series of events, secured a volunteer slot doing what I REALLY wanted to do. Broadcasting.
I spent the remainder of my tour running audio and loading film reels at the American Forces TV station on base. And when I found time, went to the production studio and practiced announcing.
Following the USAF experience, I used my G.I. bill and attended the Broadcasting Institute of Maryland (one of the best such schools in the country). My first paid on air job was weekends and later overnights at WSUX-FM in Seaford, Delaware. The pay was $2.25 an hour and before I was promoted to 6 nights a week from Midnight to 6, I worked 11 hours every weekend. If I bought a round trip bus ticket from Baltimore to Seaford and back, the cost of the ride meant I broke even after taxes and essentially worked for free. So when I really needed money, I hitchhiked. Took about 6 hours of thumbing compared to a 2 hour 45 minute drive. We did the best we could with what we had…and I netted around $25 which went surprisingly far in 1977 for a single guy.
TO make a long story short, my travels took me to KUPY in Puyallup, Washington, then back east to WPOC-FM in Baltimore where at the age of 21 I made it to a Major Market by first working weekends and then a couple of months later, promoted as the station’s first full time Production Director. Don’t be impressed. PD Larry Clark took a raw jock with less than 2 years in the business and with patience and determination, taught me a lot which I never really appreciated until he canned my irresponsible carcass and it all fell into place later.
Then we went back to Seattle, then back to Baltimore, then to Gettysburg, then to Baltimore, then to Seattle, then to Westminster, Maryland, and then to York, PA where i have been for just over 6 years as a sales rep and voiceover guy for the 6 Cumulus radio stations in York/Lancaster/Reading.
I think I’m the type of guy Harry Chapin had in mind when he wrote and recorded W.O.L.D.