Being raised in the Motor City, I didn’t hear much country music growing up. Some guys I worked with in the early 80’s liked Alabama, but that was about it.
When I moved away for radio in 1988 and lived in small towns in Northern Michigan for four years, I would click around my Ford Escort’s radio and hear lots of it. The Garth rocket was launching, and I grabbed a seat. At station two, we DJ’s oversaw our AM country station. That experience exposed me to more tunes I liked. I remember taking a shine to Patti Loveless around that time.
In the mid 90’s, my wife and I saw Reba twice on the same tour in Toledo and Detroit. I also recall a Lorrie Morgan show at Richwoods’ football stadium during my TV days here in Peoria in the late 90’s.
Ironically, 13 years ago, I was offered the midday position at this station, but opted instead for a morning show gig on the news/talk station, thinking that would be a good place to grow old on the radio. Wrong.
Around 2005 I got hired at the other country station in town, at that time on Brandywine Drive, to do the afternoon show. But our owner sold the station shortly after my hiring and, 90 days later, the new owner fired the whole staff. At least I got to see Toby Keith and Joe Nichols at the Civic Center during that short stint.
All this is to say that while I’m a rock guy at heart, country music has found a way into my life, too. Jo Dee Messina touching my wife’s shoulder at her ’04 show at then-O’Brien Field is a great memory we both share. I look forward to hangin’ with you during your lunch hour and early afternoons on Nash.
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