The Aircheck Vault

The North Carolina Years

An "expert" is anyone brought in from out of town. The farther they're brought in from, the more of an expert they are." — Murphy

My life in Roanoke seemed to completely come to an end in late 1982. I was fired from K92. I graduated from VWCC with my first college degree (A.A.S. in Business Administration). My cat of 18 years died. My grandmother died (I wasn't that close to her, but still!) And in early 1983 I broke up with my former girlfriend / fiancee (a good thing, as we later learned that she's a lesbian...well that explains lots of things!).

As for my career in Roanoke, it died as well. I'd already burned so many bridges that I couldn't find a job. I tried going to an employment agency, and they referred me to a job writing copy for WSLC/WSLQ. They were going to hire me. The agency said "You can start working as soon as you pay us our $600 fee." I said "I don't have $600, I'm unemployed." I told her to call Herm Reavis—the WSLC/WSLQ GM, who was a notoriously cheap old bastard—and tell him to pay it. Herm (naturally) wouldn't pay it. I told the agency "Oh well." The lady there became quite pissed off and told me "If you weren't serious you shouldn't have wasted my time!" So, no chance of finding another radio job in Roanoke.

Meanwhile my father was turning into an angry old bastard over me being 25, living at home and not having a job. He started trying to find me one. There's nothing in life worse than having your dad trying to find a job for you. "Well I talked to Jack Pilcher who works at the Widget Factory and he says they have an opening for a NEW MAN! You'd work overnights and run the widget machine. You wouldn't make much to start off but after you get some experience your pay would go up." I told him I was a radio announcer, and I wasn't going to go run a damned widget machine. "WELL YA CAIN'T JUST LAY AROUND ON Y'ASS ALL DAY!!!" This went on for months.

Finally in December, Steve Finnegan—who was now working at WSEZ-93 in Winston-Salem, NC— called and said they needed somebody to fill in on weekends for a few weeks. A few months later, I was in the right place at the right time and got a job in Wilmington, NC on WGNI. Then a year and a half later, I was off to Asheville to the all-new WKSF "KISS-FM" where I stayed for four years until it became fairly unbearable. After generally being the peon in Roanoke all those years, suddenly, in NC, people actually thought I was good! Murphy is always right, isn't he?

Disclaimer: Some of these tapes may contain some ethnic, racial and social prejudices that—at the time—were commonplace in American society, especially in the South. These remarks were wrong then and are wrong today. In the years since doing these, I've become a much more open-minded and tolerant person. While some things you may hear here no longer represent my current views, they're being presented as they originally were because to do otherwise would be the same as claiming that these prejudices never existed in the first place.

PG on Z93 (WSEZ), Winston-Salem, December 4, 1982
I seem to recall that I came in at 6PM, ran "American Top 40" for four hours, then did the last to hours live. Here, just a basic show, when you're new you don't want to ham it up too much. There's a spot by FIN about five minutes into this that I recorded in its entirety becaue it was him...I think it was for some new LP at some record store?

PG on Z93 (WSEZ), Winston-Salem, December 11, 1982
Same deal, following week. Not bad under the circumstances! Another FIN spot, this was for the movie "48 Hours" with Nick Nolte and Eddie Murphy.

PG on WGNI, Wilmington, September 13, 1983
I was hired at WGNI because I was in the right place at the right time. To escape from my father, who by now was really turning into a major-league asshole, my mother suggested that I go stay at their dumpy little trailer in Myrtle Beach, SC. One Saturday, I drove to Wilmington to visit my former WROV friend K.C. Jones, who took me to see the radio station. The PD, Bruce Cotton, was there. It started snowing—very rare for Wilmington!— and I was there when their overnight guy called, whining about how he couldn't work that night because he was afraid to drive through two inches of snow. Bruce said "Well I guess that means I'm working tonight!" I told him "Hire me and I'll do it." HE DID. So I went to visit this place and three hours later I was working an airshift.

There aren't many recordings of my time there because I do not recall them having an aircheck skimmer (a cassette recorder wired to the mike switch so that it recorded when the mike was on) and to record yourself you had to patch it in the production room and put it on a reel and edit it. That being said, these first three from September '83 DO sound like they were recorded with a skimmer???

Here I was doing Midnight-6AM. I believe I was still part-time and filling in for Shirelle Robinson, who had been hired to do the overnight shift. About two months later, around the beginning of October, I was hired to do 7-Midnight. At 6, it was Morgan in the Morning (Gary Webber) and Janet Kennedy. Morgan was a gruff but lovable guy about ten years older than me from Parma, OH (right outside of Cleveland). I think Janet was from Massachusetts? I do recall that she'd just graduated from UNC, quite the "preppy sorority sister Mandy Pepperidge" type. She thought that dealing with scruffs like me was below her dignity. There's about an hour of them following me.

PG on WGNI, Wilmington, September 15, 1983
Another one from that same week, a few days later. More of Morgan & Kennedy. This one was pretty good, considering it was "laid back adult" WGNI.

PG on WGNI, Wilmington, September 16, 1983
Another one from that same week, a few days later. More of Morgan & Kennedy. Also a pretty good one.

PG on WGNI, Wilmington, March 17, 1984
Here, we have a few breaks from early '84, at this point I'd been there about a year...

PG on WGNI, Wilmington, March 21, 1984
One break, where I read a news story about a man and woman who worked for the fire department who got married in a burning house.

PG on WGNI TGIF 1, July 1984
By July, 1984, Bruce Cotton had been forced out; Wally Voight who was an incompetant old fart had been hired as Operations Manager, and he'd just hired a new PD—a cocky, blonde-haired prick from California who went by Bobby Mercer. Mercer had the idea to start a promotion in which you registered your apartment complex then every Friday night they'd send one of us to do a remote from your apartment complex swimming pool. Of course, I NEVER got to go do this because I was the 7-MID guy. I complained about this and finally they relented and agreed to have one of the part-time people cover Friday night so I could go do a party. And just as this was about to happen, I was hired at WKSF in Asheville, gave them a week's notice, and they got all pissy and said "Well if you're leaving then you can't go do the party!" What a bunch of assholes. Anyway, this was one of the promos that ran for this.

PG on WGNI TGIF 2, July 1984
At the time these TGIF parties were going on, in politics Sen. Jesse Helms was running for his third term against former NC Gov. Jim Hunt. Helms was running commercials that went "He said he'd never do it. Then, he did it. Then, he did it again. Jim Hunt raised your taxes!" These were all over the air in late Summer '84 so we decided to satirize these when doing this TGIF promo. The other announcer here was Steve Stark ("Chuck McCartney" on the air but not THE Chuck McCartney who was really Bill Figenshu). This ran for a few weeks until our prim and proper GM, Hannah Dawson, heard it and had one of her infamous "I took too much Primateen" shit fits saying "I DON'T WANT THAT ON MY RADIO STATION!"

PG on WGNI, September 7, 1984
WGNI was going to hell in a hand-basket, still, I enjoyed working there except for one thing. Saying "The beer has to taste the same every time you tap the keg!" Wally Voight insisted on all of us working six days a week and doing the same shift on the weekends as during the week, meaning that I had no social life. In August our midday guy, Gerry Flannigan, left and I told them I wanted to do middays. But they wouldn't approve this. Wally, that sneering old bastard, said "You're not 'midday material'" I finally arranged a meeting with Hannah to try to appeal to her to overrule him. When I showed up, he was already in her office; she'd told him of this and there they both were, waiting to shoot me down. I left the meeting depressed and angry, bought a six-pack of 24-oz. Schlitz Tall Boy beers, drove to Carolina Beach then up some road to the Cape Fear River side of the strip and sat there and drank it all thinking "I'm screwed." By about 3:00 I decided "I'd better go back to the apartment and take a shower and try to sober up before work tonight" and arrived and there was a note on the door from Steve Stark (my roommate) that said "Call John Stevens in Asheville" with his number. I did, and I was hired to be on the new station, 99.9 KISS FM! The next morning I showed up at WGNI, went into Hannah's office and said "OK if you won't give me what I want, I RESIGN!" and gave her my letter. I was OUTTA THERE!! Knowing this, I made sure to record my very last hour on the air.

PG on WGNI Spots
Since there's so little else from WGNI I decided to put up my production reel. These are various spots I did in 1984.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, January 15, 1985
Just a few breaks near end of show. This would happen if you took a previously used cassette, used it again without first zapping (bulk erasing) the tape, the first show would end and you'd then hear the last of the one previously on the tape.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, January 22, 1985
Just a few breaks...same situation as above.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, February 15, 1985
Though we put KISS on in September 1984, we didn't get an aircheck skimmer until early the next year. Here's the earliest one I have. This was pretty good, with lots of gags and phone bits.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, February 17, 1985
Another one from that same week, not bad! The usual gags and phone bits. Some guy says I'm "the #1 DJ" and I tell him that no, that's actually Bill. After a Twisted Sister record I imply that our boss was like Douglas C. Niedermayer. Phone bit where some guy asked me, "Where'd they get you from?" Without mentiong their name, I got in a really nice dig at my former employers in Wilmington. Ha.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, Sometime in March, 1985
Last two hours (4-6AM). More gags and phone bits. Some girl tells me I have the "sexiest voice". We were giving away Tommy Shaw LPs and I do a contest.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, March 1, 1985
Last two hours (4-6AM). Basic show. I pass along some 'Tax Tips'.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, March 12, 1985
Mid-6. Most of it. Good, basic, a few good gags. Michael Jackson's hair is on fire. Thirsty Thursday promo where I talk about giving away BEER!

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, March 17, 1985
7-Mid. When you work the overnight show, you always try to bring your best when you're doing an earlier shift and this time, I definitely did! This was the end of the first KISS Classics Weekend and I start by beaming away Ed Sanders, who was on before me. Our two biggest competitors were WCKN / Greenville SC and WANS / Anderson SC and Bill had just started referring to them as "The Chicken" and "The Anus" and soon, I did this too. Then we started calling ourselves "KISS-FM, your official Chicken Chokers and Anus Busters" (and yes, occasionally we did this on the air). Well here I get in a good jab at The Chicken. Lots of other good gags / breaks about tequila, the weatherman, snow is covering up the winos, Roger Daltrey. Tail end of a Carolina Toyota spot by Bill. This one was a 'keeper'!

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, July 12, 1985
Mid-6. Good! I talk to some guy in Clemson who hates the Tigers. Several gags about John always being late. The monkey shows up again. I wake up some guy's girlfriend. Then miraculously John shows up ON TIME!

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, July 16, 1985
About 90 minutes of it. This was a few days after the big "Live Aid" concert. Live promo for "KISS Corners" which were little areas in Ivey's stores where we sold KISS shirts / jerseys. I'd forgotten about those.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, July 18, 1985
Mid-6. Good! A few hours. Funny gag about John liking younger women. We were now using that "Electronic Weather" jingle for the forecasts, I remember thinking at the time that this was stupid but in retrospect it sounds pretty cool. The highlight of this was me having a monkey brought in dance while an organ grinder played "Take Me Out To The Ball Game" as I read the baseball scores (all sound effects, of course). Mike Batts was the guy who "brought in the monkey". You hear the tail end of a spot for some concert being held at the Twin Lakes (near Spartanburg, not the one near Old Fort) campground tagged "A Possum Lewis Production". Possum Lewis was this redneck guy, I think he knew Chuck. He called the station all the time. I remember that he thought he was the most important person in the world and he'd call up demanding that I play this or say that. I wonder whatever happened to him?

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, July 23, 1985
Mid-6. Most of it. Bill had started doing this thing he called "Blowing my load" where he'd pop open the mike and go "AAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!" and soon I was doing this, too. There's a pretty good one right after the midnight legal ID. Later in the morning, around 4:45, some girl called and said she was going to get a job at McDonald's and I told her "If you do I'm going to come by and squeeze your buns!" and she said I was a pervert. I mentioned this on the air then started getting all these calls from other girls about this, about me being a pervert, soon I was talking about how most all of us were a bunch of perverts. Listening to this now, I absolutely can't believe that we got away with some of this shit.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, September 6, 1985
One break from Glenn, who was on before me. I'm actually on a spot (recorded entire thing). Some good phone bits, other gags. SFX of doves shitting for Prince "When Doves Fly". We were doing a big "KISS Birthday Celebration" for the one-year birthday. Kent Compton shows up early and hangs out with me, then I hang out with him for his first hour, with us both wondering how late John would be that morning. Eventualy we called John on the air and woke him up.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, November 23, 1985
One of my regular callers was Jere Baumann, who was an all-night security guard for Globe Security. He'd call nearly every night, after a while I'd hang out with him and his girfriend Jaymie. He was a big football fan so I had the idea to get him to come in and do weekly NFL football picks with me. We openly declared that we don't really know anything about this, these are the most unscientific picks possible and DON'T BET A CENT ON ANY ONE OF THESE. We called the show, "Late Night Losers." Here you'll get to hear an episode, rest of the show is basic but OK.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, November 29, 1985
Another episode of "Late Night Losers"—Jere is late, finally he phones in, can't get off from work that night. While doing the picks some guy shows up and tries to steal something and Jere runs him off (it was me doing a stereotypical young inner-city black guy and was just racist as hell, I'd never do this today but this was the 80s and we were in the South). Jere eventually shoots the guy—not because he was stealing but because he didn't like Jere's favorite team, the Chicago Bears. (There's a gap in the middle of this, damn it, but you can still follow along.)

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, January 1, 1986
Because it was New Year's Day, I was doing the morning show. Whenever you work a night shift and get to fill in during the day, you always try to be your best and this one was pretty good. Lots of gags, Snappy Answers to Stupid Questions.

John Stevens with PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, January 2, 1986
I was sitting in for Kent Compton on the morning show while Kent was off visiting his father in Texas. John was also there and we were raunchy, offensive and absolutely fucking hilarious. One break of Dawn who came on at 10.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, January 3, 1986
Still in for Kent, Bob Williams was the newsman. Several bits (ATWB, Snappy Answers to Stupid Questions). One Dawn break at 10.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, February 21, 1986
I was working 7-Midnight for Glenn. John Oliver was on remote at Tracer's in Spartanburg along with "Spanky Jim" Miller—this fat red-haired guy who worked weekends and the rest of the time went around to bars setting up this stupid bar game called "Selectricution". I always referred to him on the air as "Sparky John Milner" or "Spunky Tim Moller" or "Spooky Jack Minter" or anything other than his actual name. It was George Washington's birthday. I was kicking ass that night, I slammed "The Chicken, the Anus and the 94FM pussies" (I still don't believe I got away with this shit!) Lots of AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHs inspired by Bill.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, May 26, 1986
This was used for the Kiss Composite Aircheck (below). Lots of the usual gags..."I'm stark raving naked!", the Alice Cooper "School's Out" break that Bill always loved, and the first mention on these tapes of my future "brother" D.C. Creasman's jewelry store (in a promo for a giveaway at Yesterday's night club which was right back behind his store).

KISS Composite Aircheck, June 1986
A few minutes of Chuck/John, Dawn, Bill, Glenn, Yours Truly.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, September 18, 1986
Pretty good. I absolutely could not stand the Janet Jackson record that we were playing. Beatles voice intro over "Twise & Shout". The station's cats did not like it when I plaed 38 Special.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, September 19, 1986
A few hours of this one, pretty good, the usual crazy stuff.

PG / Dawn on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, November 1, 1986
I was working 10-2 on Saturday. Dawn (soon to be) Creasman was doing a remote at Carolina Tire on Tunnel Road and I was tossing it to her four times per hour. I don't have much of Dawn on tape because she was one of those sorts who would come in after you and immediately check the aircheck skimmer and if I'd left a tape in there, she'd take it out. But I have her here, she had no choice. Ha.

There were a few mentions of David here, she was giving away a DCC Jewelers gift certificate, and he comes up another time (funny). His store was still in Innsbruck Mall, he hadn't yet moved up the road into the former bank building.

There was some poor guy named Carl who worked at the Carolina Tire store on Patton Avenue and the manager of the Tunnel Road location was doing a "How Ugly Is Carl?" contest during this remote. Somebody was there in a Santa outfit. Overall it sounded like a good time was had by all.

We were plugging Cinjades whose drink special at the time was "Skip And Go Naked Party Drinks". Overall this was a pretty good one.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, November 13, 1986
Typical overnight show. A few good gags.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, November 21, 1986 Overnight show. More talk of us giving away the Video Van at Xmas. Gags about LeRoux ("I want to try eating Cajun style") and "Shake You Down" ("If we shake you up you might spew all over the place.") A hello to Chris, whom I later became friends with, who worked overnights at the Amoco on Merrimon Avenue. A couple of breaks by Chuck at 5:30.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, December 3, 1986
After spending the entire summer promoting it and driving it around, we are finally about to give away the Kiss-FM Coke Video Van which was tied in with a big promotion for the debut of NEW COKE. The giveaway was going to be two days before Christmas.

New Coke was probably the biggest disaster in the history of capitalism and marketing. Huge build-up then they rolled it out and it tasted like Pepsi. What was worse was, with the advent of New Coke, they quit selling Old Original Coke. Imagine that. Original Coca-Cola, probably the most successfully marketed product in history, and they TOOK IT OFF THE MARKET! Well consumers would have none of this and soon it was back and they called it "Coca Cola Classic". This lasted for a while, then New Coke quietly disappeared.

But during all of the hoopla over this the Coke people bought this van and in conjunction with them, we gave it away. It had a big TV in the back along with a 1" VTR player with a big reel of video tape full of music videos hosted by MAX HEADROOM and a killer sound system. The idea was, you'd win this then you'd be the COOLEST PERSON IN THE WORLD and go around everywhere, showing up at parties, playing music, and presumably have women dripping off of you. When we finally did give it away, within about two weeks, the winner stripped all of the audio/video equipment out of it and sold that. Then he sold the van.

Anyway, this was going on about this time. As for the show, good, with the usual amount of cynical, borderline filthy remarks. Sports story about new Putt Putt HOF in Fayetteville. Gag about Mr. Pibb coming in bottles.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, December 15, 1986
OK show, fairly basic. Highlights include coming out of Meat Loaf doing "Paradise by the Dashboard Light" and doing the "Steering wheel is broken" poem (which was adapted from a dirty joke once told to me by my grandfather). Another good but filthy remark after the Eagles "Witchy Woman", and I discuss Cyndi Lauper's hair colors.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, December 19, 1986
MY BIRTHDAY! Earlier on the night before, Chuck and John were at CinJade's for "Comedy Night" and I stopped by, soon it was known that my birthday was coming up at midnight so we all started drinking WAY too much. I managed to make it to the station and work overnight. Some nuttiness with Glenn. There's an entire "4C's Jewelry" spot by Dawn. The usual blue humor and zaniness. I did the sports over the Capt. Kangaroo theme. Around 4AM, Chuck called in and said he would not be making it in to work because he was still too drunk to drive, so I had to stay until John showed up and this led to the great John Stevens Late Sweepstakes.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, January 1, 1987
I went on at midnight...NEW YEAR'S! My friend Tony showed up with a couple of his friends from the bowling alley who brought me a bottle of champagne (which we drank). Then Tony pulled out one of those big plastic candy canes that are full of miniature liquor bottles (and we drank most of those). We were talking openly on the air about all the drinking. Kenny Buckner was across the hall doing something in the production room. About 2AM, his father (who looked exactly like Mr. Roper on "Three's Company") called and wanted to talk to Kenny. I went and got him. This was on the speaker phone but Kenny's father didn't know this. He started telling Kenny "Kenny. This is your dad. Please come home now. Do not stay there with those drunken fools. Come home now!" This was actually a pretty good show, considering...

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, January 7, 1987
Bud Polacek had just taken over as the owner, none of us were happy about this and my usual cynicism was ramped up to a new level. Promos for Dawn at Ladies' Night at Cinjades. PSA for Charlie's Liquor Store. Dawn does a spot for John Faust Insurance that's based on the "Ghostbuster's" theme (I recorded the entire thing). Chuck's first break at 6.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, January 8, 1987
I play "Back in the USSR" and make a remark about "You get sent to Siberia if you show up at work in blue jeans." This was because that old asshole Bud had just proclaimed "No blue jeans in the building! I once worked at a place when a client had a problem with a commercial and stopped by the station after hours and was greeted at the door by someone in blue jeans AND HE WAS HORRIFIED!" This was at a meeting and I told Bud I worked overnights and nobody showed up overnight. I pressed the issue and pointed out "If you stop by the Wachovia bank at 1:00 in the morning you're not going to see people dressed as they do during business hours, you're going to see people in blue jeans cleaning the building. He said, "DOESN'T MATTER!!!" However he DID allow sweat pants (which I think looked less "businesslike" than jeans...go figure). This was also Elvis' birthday, he would have been 52, and I was playing some Elvis songs. A few other gags / bits.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, January 12, 1987
A couple of hours worth. The forecast called for snow and I was tired of kids pestering the shit out of me wanting to know if they had school later that day, or not. I got fed up and shot one of them on the air. Another mention of Dawn doing Ladies' Night at Cinjades.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, January 16, 1987
Fairly good but basic show, with a few good breaks.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, January 22, 1987
From about 3AM until 5. It was snowing! Nice bit with Autograph "Turn Up The Radio" where I tell people to turn it up "so damn loud that people call the cops but don't worry even if they do it's snowing and the cops can't get there!" Lude remark about how I "just measured eight inches...and it's also snowing!" Chuck Finley shows up at 5:00 but on the way to the station, his car went off the road when he got to that hairpin curve just down Lookout Road from the station. About half an hour of Chuck.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, January 24, 1987
Saturday afternoon, I was at the studio and Glenn was doing a remote at the "WNC Business & Industrial Fair." We were both good! I was trying to keep it clean because...afternoon.

Stevens & Finley on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, February 4, 1987
Highlights include "Today in History". Also, much talk about the "Tough Man Contest" which was coming up in a few days.

Stevens & Finley on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, March 15, 1987
The usual insanity...highlights include "The Worst Ever Pick-Up Lines" and Chuck asking John a series of music trivia questions. John gets every single one of them correct.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, March 16, 1987
Another basic but good show including a mention of the "Jewelry Jello Jump" promotion. On Thursday nights, Dawn showed up at a club called "Adam's" which was at the airport. David brought jewelry and (as I recall) and ladies had to jump into a pool of Jello to find it. John and Chuck show up at 5:30 and included here is their show from 5:30-about 7:00AM. John showed up with some kind of fancy gourmet flavored coffee, Chuck hates it and is giving John endless shit over this. Hilarious.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, March 30, 1987
I was doing the Mid-6 show and this was the morning of the day that Dawn married David Creasman, who would soon become one of my best friends and my "brother". I mention that a few times, otherwise a basic show.

GT / PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, April 3, 1987
Just a few minutes of this... At the time, Glenn was doing afternoons and I was doing 7-Midnight. Glenn was on and it was snowing. IN APRIL. Well not so uncommon in the mountains. I showed up and we did cancellations and a few "things you can do in the snow" gags.

PG and John Oliver on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, April 28, 1987
I was doing 7-Midnight, which I did for most of the spring. John no longer worked at the radio station but was now doing his "Rockwave" show full-time. Rockwave was a three-minute-long TV "music news" update featuring John Oliver, produced by Jay Winer and Tim Fennell, and written by yours truly (I have some of these on DVDs and one day intend to put them here). But tonight, John stopped by and co-hosted the nightly "KISS-FM ELECTRIC DEDICATION HOUR" (I always thought this sounded stupid but that's what they called it, probably because we had a jingle for this). This entire hour was absolutely hilarious, followed by my last hour and one break from Vic Thomas (Tommy Clevinger) who was on at midnight.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, June 30, 1987
Me on the morning show, sitting in for Tim Edwards and Chuck Finley. Paul Davis is doing the news. Here is the live John Faust Insurance commercial I did based on that scene in "Deliverence" where the guy has to squeel like a piggy, only it was GT having to do this because a cop caught him speeding. Other live spots, often I went into them with a gag, for Corner House Restaurant, Ballard's Appliance and the Asheville Carpet Connection. This week, a bunch of hippies / 'Hare Krishna' people were staying in the mountains near the Nantahala Outdoor Center and they called themselves "The Rainbow Family". Apparently they had a live elephant. We do lots of gags about this. Near the end I do the "Love Grows Where Rosemary Goes" gag that Steve Finnegan and I have done for years (he STILL does it).

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, July 1, 1987
Another day on the morning show. Paul does the news, a funny bit with him coming out of one newscast about the Rainbow Family. Bits include the Billy Very "FINISH THE SONG!" bit and I have fun playing "My Sweet Lord" for the Rainbow Family people (complete with elephant sfx). I'm mad over some of the sports scores. I do a live promo for "Rockwave" with John Oliver. More live spots, same clients as above.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, July 2, 1987
One more day on the morning show, Paul is doing the news and we had a few very good "back & forths" coming out of his news / sportscasts. Live spots for the same sponsors as above. Dawn followed me at 10:00 and we did a pretty funny switch-off.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, July 15, 1987
The all-night show, pretty good. We were promoting a Tractor Pull which was to be at the Asheville Speedway. I was to appear at this. I'd just made friends with Chris Lockhart who worked at the Amoco on Merrimon, one of the other people who worked the overnight shift. I got tickets for him, his wife, and his son and we all went to the tractor pull.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, August 5, 1987
This one was later edited and used for an audition tape. There are a few gaps in the tape, I think the aircheck skimmer was having problems, so some of this is kind of "skippy" (no not like the peanut butter). I was promoting Dawn, who was giving out daily "Lay's Meat Packs" and meat cooking tips and I suggested "If you want an opinion on your meat, show it to Dawn."

I do a promo mentioning that every Saturday night at ENCORE! at the Sheraton, downtown Asheville, that one of us would be there as the Sun Country Cooler Bear. Sun Country Cooler was running commercials featuring some celebrity dancing around in a polar bear suit and at the end the head would be taken off the suit and it would be Ringo Starr or some other famous person inside.

So they did a local version of this in which one of us showed up every Saturday night, the people at the bar had to guess which of us it was, and at the end of the night we took the head off of the bear suit and if you'd guessed correctly your name was entered to win the grand prize (which was a week for two in the Bahamas, I think).

There is a really funny story about this: While in the bear suit I happened upon a big wedding celebration at the ENCORE! bar, in the big corner booth there was a wedding party, a groom and a bride—and the bride was one of my ex girlfriends, one I'd dated three years earlier and had a horribly nasty break-up with. They had NO IDEA that I was in the bear suit and asked if I worked at KISS-FM (I nodded my head because the bear wasn't supposed to talk). They then asked if I knew Pat Garrett (I nodded) and spent the next five minutes telling me what an asshole Pat Garrett was but now Susan is married to a REAL MAN (he looked like a wimpy dork to me). Later that night when I took off the bear suit head and they figured out it was me, I glanced over to where they'd been and they were getting out of this place as fast as they could go. LOL.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, August 5, 1987
This is the edited version of the one above...

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, August 15, 1987
Here we have a few breaks of Dawn, then about 90 minutes of me, then about a half hour of Glenn. Not sure of the dates but it was mid-August so we'll say August 15. I told MKG that I love her, something I was doing regularly at this point.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, September 23, 1987
I was doing 7-MID for Glenn and Tim & Chuck were doing a remote at Jim Barkley Toyota. A good show with good gags. Paul Turner showed up around 9 when it was time to do the Dedication Hour. He sat in with me and we quickly decided that instead of reading the ones that we got in the mail, we'd do dedications to OUR girlfriends. So this became "The Mary / Elizabeth Dedication Hour" for Mary and the girl Paul was dating at the time.

Mary wasn't able to hear this because she'd recently graduated from UNCA and moved to Raleigh to take a job nearby, so, shortly after we started doing this, I just let the tape roll and so for most of that hour, this one includes the entire songs because my intention was to send her the tape so she could listen to it. Obviously, I never did this because I still have the tape.

This is the night that I played Chris DeBurgh's "The Lady in Red" and told the entire world about Mary having a red teddy—she then heard from about half of her friends that "Hey he's talking about your lingerie on the radio!" and she was NOT terribly happy with this!

Also at 9:30 we featured "Rockwave" with John Oliver. Usually he mentioned the person on the air at the time but didn't this time, so we gave him grief for this.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, October 5, 1987
I'd been off the air for a few weeks, filling in as the copy writer while Kim Hayes was on vacation. I enjoyed doing this because it gave me a chance to be a "normal" person for a change and work regular daytime 9-5 hours. But I finally returned to doing the overnight shift and it was fun. Glenn introduced me appropriately during the switch-off.

At the time this was going on, Dick Cullom, former News Director and now General Manager, was making a big deal at the behest of our new owner (a former Captain in the Air Force) to show that the staff of KISS-FM was "DRUG FREE". As a big publicity stunt he wanted the entire air staff to show up at a testing facility and voluntarily submit to drug tests. So here I did a gag—an inside joke as it were—that we'd all agreed to take a drug test, but only if it were "Multiple Choice". (We never did the drug tests. I privately went to Dick and told him, "You REALLY DO NOT want to do this because if you do you'll end up having to fire half of the people who work here." They backed off.)

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, October 7, 1987
This one was later edited down and used for an audition tape. A promo for Paul Turner who was now doing afternoons. A hello to David who was working late that night at his store. Kim Carnes "I sure wish she'd give ME a snow job!" Voice was lower, I wasn't pushing it so much, but still a pretty good one.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, November 21, 1987
It was a cold, rainy, Saturday afternoon and I was doing 3-7. Chuck & Tim were doing a remote at Jim Barkley Toyota. Jim Barkley was an asshole who thought that because he was a big advertiser, he could tell us how to run the radio station. Once Tim actually told him "Well Jim, we don't tell you how to sell your cars so don't tell us how to run the station." He also was a cheap bastard. One morning when I worked for Chuck & Tim I did about five live commercials for him and he refused to pay me the talent fee, saying that "I only pay when it's Chuck & Tim." Bastard.

Various other fun breaks. Alan Archer was not doing the weather that day and I made a big deal out of this, also a bit about Chuck being a turkey and one about temperamental show-biz people.

Glenn stopped by on his way to do a remote at the Ingles Food Fair. I'd been there earlier. It was going on downtown in the Asheville Civic Center (which is now known as the US Cellular Center of Asheville and there's now a big stink going on over the fact that Harrah's—yes, the one in Las Vegas and they also own a big casino in Cherokee, NC—wants to buy it). KISS-FM had a booth there and I'd been there from the time it opened at 11AM until 2, Dawn was there 2-5 then Glenn was there 5-8 or thereabouts. We were giving away boxes of Pop Secret Microwave Popcorn and had about twenty cases of it sitting there. Knowing that Mary absolutely loved this, when I had to leave I picked up an entire case of it, carried it out the door and put it in my car then later gave it to her. One of the perks I miss about working in radio...

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, December 11, 1987
I was doing 7-Midnight for Glenn and we'd just moved the station from 90 Lookout Road to the WWNC "Radio Ranch" building. This thoroughly pissed me off because I lived at 65 Lookout Road, about 1/4 mile from the former location, and now had to drive about five miles to get to work (and that was taking a shortcut!). Though I became friends with a couple of the WWNC people, I otherwise HATED this goddamned place, and moving there would prove to be the final straw for me.

On this particular night, Tim & Chuck were doing a remote at the Wolf Laurel Ski Resort north of Weaverville. I decided that Alan Archer was boring and the weather would sound more exciting if he did it over the "Bonanza" theme. I did the Dedication Hour. Not a bad show, considering how much I hated my new surroundings.

PG on KISS-FM (WKSF), Asheville, January 5, 1988
This is the LAST EVER recording of me on KISS-FM and I was trying to get fired. Some background: After Bud Polacek sold WISE, bought WWNC and moved us into their building, I knew that for me, the end was near. For most of 1987, Bud had left us alone and let us continue with business as usual. After forcing out John Stevens, Tim Edwards became the PD and Glenn became the music director of the new stuff, Glenn and I both did the oldies, and I managed the part-timers. Tim had a good working relationship with Bud and for several months things really did seem as if all would be OK.

Dick Cullom, formerly the news director, had been promoted to General Manager. Dick was a nice guy but was about the biggest butt kisser who ever lived and for years had been known around WISE as "Mr. Peanut" because "he kisses Rick's ass so much that he has the peanuts from Rick's shit on the end of his nose." PCs were new and Dick had become quite the computer nerd, he later would take a job in Redmond, WA working for Microsoft.

Dick implented a new software system for rotating the music and since I was programming the oldies I was the one who was asked to learn how to use this to program the music rotation. It's significant that this was the first time I ever really started working with software—something I'd later go on to do as a career. I'd set up the music the same way that Barry Michaels had done as Music Director of WROV with everything broken into categories based upon whom it primarily appealed to: Men, women, or teens. We then looked at the ratings to see how many of each were listening to radio at any given time and played the music accordingly (e.g. middays, 60% of listeners were women so the music consisted of 60% female-appeal songs). It sounded good and other than me, nobody knew why.

But then came the shake-up and the move and I absolutely hated this. And immediately after the move, Bud began bringing in his own "fair-haired boys" from his other stations whom—I suspected—he'd promised jobs to all along. First he brought in Brian Maloney to supplant Tim as the new PD. Though I "worked" for Brian for several weeks, I never met him—nothing personal against him, he was probably a nice guy, but I had no intention of cooperating with anything he wanted us to do. He could not figure out how I'd done the music and kept calling me, leaving memos, and asking me to come meet with him to explain it, and I ignored him.

Then he hired Todd Tedder, also from one of Bud's other stations. Also probably a nice guy but I never met him, either. But that was the last straw, it was now obvious what was going on, we all had the choice of either bowing down to the "new regime" or we'd soon be gone.

I'd just become engaged to Mary on my 30th birthday (12/19/87) and she had a good job near Raleigh and lived in a large condo with her brother. We'd planned the wedding to be in May, 1988, and decided that I should—in the meantime&#start moving my belongings to Raleigh when visiting her. After moving everything except for my clothes I was going to spend weeks living on Paul Turner's sofa and continuing to work while increasingly behaving in a manner that would get me fired&#this, so I could receive unemployment.

So here, you hear the beginning me doing this. I made one remark in reference to Tedder about how "another of Hitler's storm troopers has been assigned to the prison camp" and later played "Midnight Special" with more references to the station being a prison camp. And my remarks were WAY more offensive than ever. At one point, while doing this show, Cullom drove up there and came in the studio and asked me "WHAT IN THE HELL ARE YOU DOING??" Ha! It was working!

But things didn't work out as I expected. Three days after doing this show, after working 12-6 on a Friday morning with a load of my stuff packed into my car, I headed to Raleigh to visit Mary. At 4AM it started snowing and were were several inches already when I left town. I made it down the mountain just ahead of the snow. Then the car started making funny noises. I'd apparently damaged First Gear in the manual transmission. I made it to Raleigh OK but knew I wouldn't be able to return until the car was fixed. Mary and I talked about this and she said "Why don't you just call them Monday morning and resign, then you won't have to go back. Then you can work on finding a job here." So I did, and that was that. I flew back a few days later, rented a U-Haul, packed the rest of my stuff and was gone...

PG on 94-Z (WZZU) Raleigh, May 7, 1988
So here we are five months later in Raleigh. I'd gotten a part-time job working in a CD store during the week, and been hired to do weekends at 94-Z. The station was pretty good, the morning guys were Curt Monday and Art Sloan. Afternoons were (oh what the hell was his name?) Chris Michaels (I think) who had come from Q-105 in Tampa / St. Petersburg. The PD was Steve Christian, who also occasionally did an air shift, or maybe he did part of the midday show, can't remember.

The midday guy that I do remember was this HUGE fat guy named Wynn Richards. Wynn was SO FAT... "HOW FAT WAS HE?" Well the control room was carpeted and they kept a chair mat under the air chair so that the chair would roll around, the chair mats were made out of the same wooden stuff used for clipboards. And about every 2-3 days, Wynn would completely destroy one of these things by rolling his FAT ASS around in the chair, on top of it. I once came in after him and was trying to clean up the chunks of what was left of one.

About that time, Mark Anthony, the night guy, showed up and I asked him "Well now what do we do?" and he said "Oh we have a ton of those" and led me to a supply closet where there were about 15 chair mats propped up against the wall. Mark says "They have to buy them by the case because he destroys another one every few days." I then heard that Wynn also worked nights at a local club and had to be fired because he got to be SO FAT that he could no longer fit up the narrow steps to the DJ booth.

PG on 94-Z (WZZU) Raleigh, May 8, 1988
Probably my second show on 94-Z, still playing it by the book but starting to have some fun with it.

PG on 94-Z (WZZU) Raleigh, May 15, 1988
I'm sitting in for Mark Anthony. Mark was a crazy motherfucker who would sneak into the radio station in the middle of the night, crawl across the floor where I couldn't see him to right behind the board, then out of nowhere he'd stand up and scream and scare the shit out of me.

On this show I reveal that I haven't lived here long by egregiously mispronouncing the name of the nearby small town, Fuquay-Varina (which is supposed to be "var-EE-nah" but I said it "var-EYE-nah". Obviously I thought it rhymed with something else. Well that's what I get for having my mind in the gutter.

PG on 94-Z (WZZU) Raleigh, May 16, 1988
Still sitting in for Mark. He always had this sign-off that he did and part of it was, "Remember now, if you're in trouble call your old friend Barney Rubble" but I can't remember the rest. I always wondered whatever became of this guy.

PG on 94-Z (WZZU) Raleigh, June 20, 1988
I'm really starting to have some fun doing this and getting better at it. In fact, this is probably the best I ever was. All the good aspects of KISS-FM only I knew that I had to really keep on my toes or else I'd be outta there.

PG on 94-Z (WZZU) Raleigh, July 4, 1988
When I listen to this one the thing that stands out is how much I was ripping off Larry Bly's show from July 4, 1976 (and when I get a copy of it from him I'll be putting it here). This is probably the best show that I ever did, all things considered.

PG on 94-Z (WZZU) Raleigh, July 20, 1988

We did lots of phone bits and a few of those are on here, also the usual gags, and this being the anniversary of the moon landing, a funny gag about Neil Armstrong.

PG on 94-Z (WZZU) Raleigh, July 24, 1988
I have a jock drop! I forgot all about that. On here somewhere I did the Georgia Satellites bit.

PG on 94-Z (WZZU) Raleigh, August 14, 1988
Well, here's the LAST ONE. Even though I continued to work as a board op / announcer (doing the news / weather) at WPTF-Raleigh for five more years, this is the last time I was ever recorded on a radio station.

As I remember it, when I took the job at 94-Z I assumed that as soon as there was a full-time opening, I'd go full time. Well, in mid-August one of the full time guys left and what did they do? They brought in somebody from elsewhere. And that was the last straw. I called the PD and told him that because of this, I was resigining. Do you blame me?