Pounding The Pavement


Friday April 12th, 2013 – Milwaukee, WI/Rosemont, IL

   I’ve got places to be, baby! It might not be New York or L.A., but that’s fine by me. Chicago is a gargantuan city and Milwaukee is my home town, so that will do for today. Milwaukee was the first place I needed to be to meet with some radio friends for lunch. That’s always worth the trip.

   Pat Martin has been a mentor to all kinds of radio people, and he was to me too. He helped me get my first job in Lansing, MI and I don’t know whether to hug him or punch him for that. He’s a great guy though, and deserves much respect and gratitude. He’s always been a big supporter.

   Kipper McGee is another radio icon I love and respect, and he was there too. Kipper and Pat’s influence have been shining beacons in my radio experience, which has been a lumpy ride at the very least. When I’ve really needed a friend, both those guys have been there and I’m grateful.

   Mitch Morgan is a very talented radio name I hadn’t had the pleasure of meeting, and he was in the mix too. He’s what radio people call ‘on the beach’, which is between gigs. He got blown out by those fine humanitarians at Clear Channel who are always known for their extreme warmth to talented people who have sacrificed their lives to attain a high level of professional competence.

    Also part of the group was Mark Helaniak. Mark is president of the Milwaukee Broadcaster’s Club, and also someone I’m hiring to put sound effects together for ‘Schlitz Happened!’ shows. I want to get old radio and TV jingles and commercials to play before shows as people walk in the theatre so it takes them back in time and puts them in the right mood before the show even starts.

   Mark was the one who did the final mix on my most recent CD ‘Hard Luck Jollies’, and he’s a pro that’s been around the area for decades. I’d never actually met him in person before, but he’s a very nice guy and we all had a blast at lunch exchanging radio stories. We are all ‘radio lifers’.

   Unfortunately, Mark’s computer system has been giving him fits of late, and we were not able to finish the original job. He asked if I could come back tomorrow, and I’m fine with that but I’m hoping we can get it done in time for the shows. I was looking forward to adding it for this week.

   There’s nothing I can do about it, so I left Mark’s house and headed to Zanies in Rosemont, IL for two more shows. I would have loved to take some time to relax, but that’s just not in the plan right now. I have to keep showing up where I’m expected, and I barely had time to make it there by show time. By the time I get gas for the car and stop for a quick meal it’s time to work again.

   I kept up what I started yesterday and worked on my act both shows. The first show was a full house, and I used that opportunity to go through my ‘A’ set. I closed with the closer I usually do, which I did early in the set last night. I haven’t been doing it of late, and I don’t do it at all in the ‘Schlitz Happened!’ show so I wanted to give it a run through in front of a full house to polish it.

   I have also used these last few shows to work on my offstage business as well. James Gregory was kind enough to give me an afternoon of his time when I was in Atlanta, and he explained to me how important it is to have a nice display of merchandise and an onstage sales pitch to sell it.

   I respect him unconditionally, and made it a point to do all of what he said every show. It was a conscious effort, and I sold out of all my merchandise by the end of tonight’s first show. I’ve not been the greatest at merchandising, but this week I showed major improvement. Thanks James!

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