This is my story...
If you were to describe your life with one word...what would it be?
Mine would be: Entertainment
I grew up in a bar. That explains a lot.
My father was a legendary bad ass bar manager in the 60’s and 70’s.
I would go to the bar after school and my after school snack would be a Shirley Temple and a bag of pork rinds.
On weekend nights I would go to the bar with my parents (My mom did the books).
Because my father’s bar was attached to a dining room I was legally able to sit and watch the bands with my Coke or Shirley Temple.
I saw Max Webster, Goddo, Teenage Head, Honeymoon Suite, Platinum Blonde and a ton of bands when they were in their earliest days. Larry Gowan used to be in a cover band called Reingold.
I saw Jerry Lewis’s son Gary, The Platters, Ronnie Hawkins and Lisa Hartman. Remember her from Knot’s Landing? Yeah..she used to sing in a band. I watched one night as my father yelled at her and made her cry because no one showed up to see her. (Told you my dad was bad ass. He made a pretty girl cry)
I wish you could have seen Kim Mitchell’s face when I first interviewed him in 1986 and told him I was that little kid who used to be asleep in the office as he got paid at that bar in Owen Sound!
One night, The Platters came up to the office to get paid. My dad introduced me to them and I told them I knew their song “The Great Pretender”. They sang it for me acapella as my father danced with me. I was 10.
It comes as no surprise that I started to play guitar. I started my first band when I was 14.
A year later I got the gig as the lead guitar player in a local country band. Man..did I make money!
I got to know the band’s sound guy. We started doing jobs together. (More money)
Then we started a DJ service. So, if I wasn’t making money on the weekend with the band or doing a sound job, I was getting paid to DJ a wedding or high school dance.
I remember my father being upset because I had more money to spend than he did! Hahhaa!
I still don’t know how I managed to graduate high school with honours...but I did!
Then one day......life changed forever...in a split second.
On November 11th 1979, we were doing a sound job for the local radio station for their Remembrance Day broadcast. Afterwards, the radio station boss asked me if I wanted a job. He took me to the station, gave me a tour and offered me my first radio gig. I was hell bent on being a rock star....but hey, they were gonna pay me...so “Sure..I’ll work for you guys”.
And it began....
CFOS AM Owen Sound:1979-1985
CHNR AM Simcoe: 1985-1985 (That gig last 3 months...cuz I got a job offer)
CFTJ AM Cambridge: 1985-1985 (That gig lasted two weeks due to the Barry Manilow overload)
Q107 Toronto: 1985-1988
97.7 HTZ FM: 1988-1999
Loggerhead Records/ Universal Group: 1999-2002
97.7 HTZ FM: 2002-Present
Awards on the wall
Canadian Publicist of the Year 2000
Paulie hugged me so hard when I got this award I thought my neck was gonna break.
Music Director of the Year 2004
I think I've been the Music Director at HTZ FM for maybe 6 years collectively.
I had 2 tours of duty. I gave up the gig both times cuz Paulie needed a gig and he is way better at it than I am.
Plus...being on the air is waaaaay more fun!!! (and less work)
Yeah...It’s been an entertaining life.