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Small Market Radio Memories...Goats and Snakes

Aug 30 | Posted by: Bill Whyte |

Thursday morning…getting close to waving goodbye to August.  Please take the heat with ya when ya go.



I spent some time…quite a bit of time yesterday morning on a small radio station in Missouri featuring “The Commander In The Morning”.  Turns out the “Commander” owns the little radio station.  He was nice enough to talk to me for almost an hour about my songwriting workshop next Friday in Pennsylvania and a show at the Mountain Playhouse with my “Evening In The Round” trio that stars Linda Davis…with me and Lang Scott there trying to look pretty.


I did not know until after the fact that the “Commander” was holding his cell phone up to his microphone with the cell phone speaker on so the audience could share.  Now THAT is small market radio folks.  No direct plug in…no phone button that he could hit and put on air…just making do with duct tape and alligator clips inside the control board.  At least that’s what I remember seeing when I started as an 18 year in that one bedroom trailer radio station KPCR in Bowling Green, Missouri.


Knowing he did that brought back a wave of great memories of learning radio in that kind of environment.  Just the best experience ever…and I was back there once more yesterday morning.


I’m looking forward to meeting the Commander when I’m up there next weekend…and certainly we will visit the 9/11 Memorial that is close by where the one plane went down.  The “Commander” covered the story best he could “live” on that little radio station.  He shared with me that when he got the call he just knew it had to be a small aircraft that crashed into that field close by as they are in the middle of nowhere.  Turned out to be much more than that.


The Memorial allows you to hear their voices he told me.  So I can imagine how moving our visit will be there.


Thank you Commander for giving me so much air time…and providing a wonderful trip down radio memory lane.



And then when I got off the phone I had to write a song about how goats recognize happy faces…and prefer happy folks to “not happy” folk.  Uh huh.  Pretty sure I was the only guy writing a parody titled “I’m Gonna Buy Me A Goat” in the entire country.  If there’s more than one of those floating around on a radio station this morning….I’ll eat my hat.  Or the goat will.



My trip back to the Grand Canyon is coming up.  I’m on the train 5 days in a row running from Williams, Arizona to the South Rim September 17-21.


One of the great things about this trip, besides LOVING northern AZ is that my long time friend and writer Roger Naylor lives in Cottonwood…a town just south of Sedona.  So I’ll get in a couple of days and bed down two nights so that Roger and I can sneak in a couple hikes in that beautiful landscape.  Roger wrote comedy for my radio show in Cincinnati…and is in the Arizona Tourism Hall of Fame now because of his amazing articles and books about his love of that state.  Incredible writing really.  And he’s logs hundreds to thousands of miles on the beautiful trails out there…so it’s like hiking with a pro.


I’ve learned to follow behind Roger who always knows the way.  Yesterday though on his hike he snapped a picture of a baby rattler (more dangerous than big ones) that he almost stepped on.  Yikes.  I HATE snakes.  Yes…I’m still going with him…but I will ask if he’s carrying a snakebite cure in his backpack with his bottles of water.  I’ll have my eyes down on the trail this time for sure.


It was Stephen Hawking who once said, “look up at the stars and not your feet”.  It’s supposed to be healthy for ya.  Not if you let a rattle bite your boots.  It’s all relative…as you would know Mr. Hawking.



Anyone remember doilies?  What happened to them?  I used to think it was a requirement that every Grandma had them on the arms of their couch.  Mine did.  And then they’re just gone…and nobody is sitting behind a Singer making those bad boys anymore.  Gone the way of lard and outdoor toilets.  Okay…I don’t miss some things.



John Krasinski…who was so great on “The Office” is the new Jack Ryan in a Tom Clancy eight part series to air on Amazon.  He’s like the sixth or seventh actor to have this role after Harrison Ford started with it and passed it on to Alec Baldwin who then passed it down to several others.  I’ve got Amazon somewhere on my “smart aleck” TV big screen that I have…I just gotta figure out how to get there. 


I know it starts with some functions on my remote control…but I’ve lost the dang thing.  Wonder if it’s under that dolie on my couch?



I’ve got a conference call that has to do with booking dates later today…and then I’ll be digging into what I’m going to talk about again in my songwriting workshop coming up next Friday.  Working ahead…again.


Have a great Thursday!



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