Sunday, October 12, 2008

Useful Uncovering

Dear Spotters, thank you for your interest in my paintings. I will be glad to share them with you, but it will take some time. My neighbor is ready to take digital photographs of them but I'm still working on three of them and another three were damaged during my last move and need to be repaired. Maybe by December I'll be ready to "show." DB

Instead of using your imagination as an escape,
create an inner landscape that matches your goals.



In the late 1960s, when I moved back to New York City, I found a 24 hour radio station that played my favorite music, classical. The program that ran from midnight to 6 was particularly interesting because it was one 6 hour program which contained only 2 five minute newscasts somewhere around 2 and 4. And the announcer, Bill, was an intellectual, sophisticated gentleman who had very interesting things to say.

I thought to myself that if I ever had my own radio program, that is what I wanted to do. I thought about it off and on over the years and imagined what I would do and what it would be like.

About 6 years later I heard that the station was looking for part time relief announcers. So I auditioned and was hired. When I worked it was in the daytime or the evening. But sometimes, if I worked the evening shift, I would stay for a while and talk with, Bill, the all night announcer, who was a fascinating fellow. We had great conversations.

But the station was sold and the new manager, who didn't know much about music, broadcasting or New York, brought in a bunch of buddies from Kansas City and turned it into a rock station. They thought they were going to take New York by storm. (Nobody takes New York City by storm.)

They lasted for about a year and then went off the air. The station was dead for almost another year. And then one evening I got a message when I got home from David, the man who had been the program director of the old station. He told me that we had gone back on the air at 8:30, Bill was no longer available so Matt was coming in to do the all night show and could I be there at 6 to do the morning show. I called him back and said I would. I set my alarm, went to bed, woke up at 4, had some coffee and breakfast and then walked from my apartment on 57th Street down to the building on 45th Street, took the elevator up and walked in on Matt who was just finishing the all nighter.

I was now the full time staff announcer for the morning show. A week later we had a staff meeting. After it, David, the program director asked us if we were all satisfied with our shifts. Matt said he would rather do the morning show and I said I would rather do the all night show, so David said go ahead and switch tonight.

That night, at midnight, I sat down, turned on the microphone and was on the air doing the program I wanted to do and thought about doing and imagined myself doing for the past 10 years.

For the next 2 years it was a love affair. I programmed the show myself, so I could do anything I wanted. I could play a piece and then play it again if I wanted to. I could play the longest recorded piece, a 5 1/2 hour opera by Berlioz. I interviewed some musicians, got a lot of great fan mail which I still have, some of it from famous people, got my name in the papers and was a happy man.

But, alas, they sold the station again. The new manager was inept and managed (mangled) the place right out of business. So I went on my vagabond way. But it taught me about imagining and visualizing my goals and that I had more to do in life.

DB - Vagabond Journeys



Leigh said...

I'm really looking forward to seeng your artwork!
:) Leigh

Beth said...

It was very interesting to read about how you came to be in radio! Sounds like you had a lot of fun with it while it lasted, too, and made some great memories.

I loved your line that "nobody takes New York City by storm." I have a feeling that's very true!


Dannelle said...

The "show" shall be a hit! I predict a sellout. Until then I shall imagine and listen to a musical landscape. Dannelle

a corgi said...

sounded like a good job for you DB; sorry the station kept getting sold though

looking forward to seeing your artwork!


Searching for Peace said...

I cant wait to see your artwork. Thank you for sharing your story. I am always interested in reading about your life. You have done so much.... hugs, Christine