The Story Continues...

Sparks Of Insanity By Vinny "Bond" Marini Thursday, May 22, 2008

As we have discussed in the past, I worked as a DJ for a number of years. Beginning with the second day I was on the R.I.T. campus I did at least one radio show a week for all four years. Most of the time i did two a week.

I began doing the midnight to 3:00 am shift Friday/Saturday and Saturday/Sunday. I L-O-V-E-D these shifts. I was alone at the could smoke inside in those days and I took advantage of it in many ways (wink wink)...I could experiment with my music and play anything that caught my eye.

WITR had a music collection that rivaled most of the major FM stations of the day. There were over 15,000 albums in our collection and it spanned from big band to rock to blues to jazz to funky stuff (in those days that meant Captain Beefheart, the GTOs and the like, music that would never make mainstream radio because of its lyrics - YES, even then).

It was all vinyl and it was incredible to walk into the music room and just start picking. In all honesty, I tended to stick with the same type of music I love now...rock, southern rock, the San Francisco sound. BUT...I also began to advance my knowledge with "tutelage games". I would walk into the room and just grab things off the shelf, no matter what it was.

Then I would find ways to slip them into my show. When I first began I would get phone calls from listeners asking what the hell I was doing playing Dean Martin right after the Grateful Dead. Well, if I could make the songs 'flow' I did it.

There were some mixes I probably liked too much and used too often, but hey...

also got a lot of concerts then (and I would bet still today), because of the number of colleges within an hour and a half.

That meant we got the opportunity to get some of those touring on the air. As a junior I also began working for the local concert promoter, normally working security (Yeah me too Angell!) and that got me even more access to meeting some of the acts.

Unfortunately, unlike my friend Bud, I did not think ahead and keep copies of many of those tapes. I do have a few reel to reels somewhere and one is the interview with Rick Wakeman that I described here on The Couch.

But I loved doing the radio and even did a morning shift my sophomore year in full-tilt top 40 "stacks of wax on my wheels of steel, I am woman, Helen's Ready, Eli's Coming, Three Dog Night" kind of stuff and playing the top 40 of 1973 which included such memorable hits as:

  • Angie
  • Basketball Jones
  • D'yer Mak'er
  • Delta Dawn
  • Goodbye Yellow Brick Road
  • Half-Breed
  • Killing Me Softly..
  • My Maria
OK, we can stop now...

That same year I took on the 9:00pm - Midnight shift on Tuesday and Thursday evenings. A more "civil" hour to do radio, but with more restrictions because there were still people milling about in the station and in the college union building where we were located, so the shows began to get a tad more normal. Also that year we increased our power and were broadcasting to most of the city and surrounding areas of Rochester.

But I always loved mixing it up...not sure how this got to where it ended up, let me know if you like it.

Oh and if you did not know all of yesterday it was Eric Clapton "Running On Faith"; Grateful Dead "Big River" (live RFK Stadium 06/10/1973); and Sting "Heavy Cloud, No Rain".

27 Of Your Sparks

  1. Schmoop Says:
  2. An alternative kind of Casey Kasem. Rock On, Vin!!

  3. Lu' Says:
  4. Bond, why didn't you stay in radio?

  5. MATT-MAN: hopefully very alternative!

    LU': Tough industry...though I kept on the fringe for years, but that is another post!

  6. Travis Cody Says:
  7. Dude...that mix was great!

  8. TRAVIS: Well Thank You Sir...I was real comfortable with the Ramones into SRV mix, but I was afraid I was forcing the SRV into Phish mix, but it did work out

  9. I liked it. Very nice! A job well done!

  10. Liz Hill Says:
  11. Ahhh--Goodbye Yellow Brick Road was the first album I bought with money I earned working the polls handing out stuff. I was in Junior high *grin*

  12. RUNNINGWILD: Thanks for stopping by again mystery person! Glad you enjoyed.

    TURN: pppfffffffffffffftttttttttt
    Junior High...funny gal...

  13. leelee Says:
  14. I got anerror so I am reposting my comment:

    leelee loves BOND Radio

    Ramones into Stevie Ray into it doesn't get any better than that...YUMMO!

    Thanks and HUGS!

  15. LEELEE: TY...Like I said above, was not sure I was pushing the envelope going SRV to Phish, but I did it anyway

  16. Deano and Jerry is a genious combo. Screw the neophytes who didn't get it!

    Nice SRV. I sure do miss him. To my mind he is the ONLY person to cover Hendrix and not suck in comparison.

  17. leelee Says:
  18. it worked...


  19. Dana Says:
  20. It's no wonder you enjoyed mixing it up - you are exceptional at it! I really enjoyed both yesterday's and today's!

  21. It sounds like quite a time. Being a DJ is one thing I always wanted to try, but I never had that opportunity.

  22. Jeff B Says:
  23. Made me think about when the movie "Rock N Roll High School" came out. I was just a punk kid thinking, "Man these guys are cool!

    Saw Stevie Ray Vaughn for the first time on the television at a concert in I believe Huston, TX. I had never heard of him before, but knew he would be someone big. Never got to see him in person though. The year I was going to see him was the year he died.

  24. STARRLIGHT: I will come up with the mix that worked for that combo sometime....He was a genius

    LEELEE: Ah...TY so much

    DANA: Wow...Thanks glad you enjoyed

    RWA: It was a fun time...DJs today do not have the freedom we used to have, everything is programmed from the corporate level

    JEFFB: Never got to see SRV live...something I am sorry about.

  25. My first full time radio gig we totally selected our own music. The PD's only format thing was to come out of news with a current hit. It was amazing. Those WERE the days...

  26. Rachel Says:
  27. I was reading Fred's blog...late of course...but anyway I am here! I do love the couch. You can get lots of folks on there!!

    You and I are right at almost the same age. You have brought back to memory some songs that I haven't thought of in ages!! I'll be humming Goodbye Yellow Brick Road the rest of the day.......

  28. Fred Says:
  29. I worked at 610 WOCR AM radio when I went to Oswego State. We probably had 20 listeners at the time. But, it did lead to this gig.

    While working at the college station, I would put on "Stairway To Heaven" or any other long song I could find, wander over to the college tavern to listen to the song and spend time with my friends, then walk back across the hall to change the record.

    Life was good.

  30. BUD: Yup yup...even when I went to the local commercial station we did...

    RACHEL: Well, TY for stopping by and having a seat. Please visit everyday.

    FRED: Cool, I did not know that part of your story. I just brought the beer ahem into the station during the first year!

  31. Kb Says:
  32. I love your smooth jazz voice!

  33. BeckEye Says:
  34. 1973 was a good year. "Bad Bad Leroy Brown," "Crocodile Rock," "Superstition," "You're So Vain," "Little Willy..." etc etc.

    And the biggest hit? Me! I was born! :)

  35. KB: You are too kind...

    BECKEYE: There were definitely good songs that year...AM and FM side of the dial...

  36. RW Says:
  37. Sorry I haven't by Vin graduations & family driving me crazy!

  38. Coco Says:
  39. hmmm ... guess my comment yesterday didn't go through ...

  40. ROGER: worries dude

    COCO: Never got it sweetie

  41. Mimi Lenox Says:
  42. Those were the days in sooo many ways. Great post, as usual.


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