Monday, July 11, 2011

My Trip To Little Rock: Tuesday at KTHV

I must say, this day was great and it wasn't over yet!  Jerry and I went to see the "old" KAAY studios at KTHV, where Jerry worked both in radio (KAAY) and in TV (KTHV), both times in the same office!  While at KAAY, it was while he was Music Director, at KTHV, I believe while he was in weather.

I caught Jerry as we were about to walk across the road:

Upon entering the lobby, Jerry called up to one of his associates (Jerry is still in the business selling advertising) and we were let in.  We were met by several people who knew Jerry well and were given a tour by Lana Campbell, a great lady who is also a friend of Clyde Clifford.  Lana sent in a couple of photos up and down the famous hallway where Jerry and his radio associates skateboarded and terrorized the TV people...they're further down the post....

We almost forgot about David B., so we ran downstairs and let him in (almost when the tour was over!).  We went back upstairs and Lana gave him a refresher tour.  The famed studio (more later) where everyone operated was now closed and locked, full of computer equipment and it was a touchy matter of gaining access, so that door was never opened.  However, the control room next door was opened to us.  It was a little cluttered, but Jerry showed me the glass window (now blocked off from the other side) where the engineer would take his cues and would cue the deejay.  David B. proceded to clown it up at the mike, but declined any photos!

Now, for the promised "more later" story on ther famed studio:  I had Jerry pose on the landing just outside the door of the studio, where the deejays used to be able to open the door and look down the stairs at the Blue Goose "Lounge":

I didn't use flash because I didn't want this particular photo to wash out, for a reason...not because I didn't want Jerry in it!

If you remember stories about Howard Watson, who was "Ken Knight" and how he conjured stories about how elegantly-dressed patrons arrived in limosines and dined on great food and wine, all the while having a sound track playing of glasses and silverware tinkling, then you'll get that magical picture he aired over nearly half the U.S. continent.  Folks from Wisconsin would call the Blue Goose and want to book a table!

Here are several links for you to revisit and enjoy:

And Jerry's skateboarding story:

Being the romantic, I could only imagine whay the Blue Goose looked like.  I doodled this picture I had in mind:

As I imagined, looking through the window, late at night, with all the lights off except those in the studio.

Can't you just imagine Jerry and others seeing someone walking down the alley and calling that phone booth, telling them, "The money's in the dumpster" in a hushed voice, then hanging up.  Sometimes, Jerry said, the person would look around, expecting a Mafia "hit", others would actually look in the dumpster!

On slow nights, Jerry and others had bets going as to how many rats would enter and exit the dumpster.  In the picture, I bet on two for the time I took to sketch it.  Did I win or lose, Jerry?

Thanks to Lana Campbell, friend of Jerry and Clyde Clifford, she sent some shots of the aforementioned famed hallway:

In the second picture, you'll see the stairwell on the left, which is directly across from the famed studio where The Greats spun their magic for us...and just down the hall, second door to the left was Jerry Sims' office when he was KAAY's Music Director and later the KTHV weather man!

Can't you see a young Jerry/"Sonny Martin" skating down these halls, turning the corner at the end of the hall in the first picture and terrorozing TV executives and Accounting people?  "Those darned radio people!!!!"

In addition to meeting Jerry's nephew David and other people, I got to see the Weather Garden and meet Joey the Weather Cat!

Onward, to meet with Barry Mac, who was about to get off from work; we met him at the local Cadillac dealership, where he was to pick up his car.  David B., Barry's former boss, went with us to see Barry again.

I believe this was the first time Barry and Jerry had met.  Barry was giving Jerry and David B. the nutshell story of what went on after KAAY went to a religious format.  Barry stayed on until a few years ago and was in a KTHV video that Craig O'Neill did on KAAY:

Well, after the meeting of these Greats above, Jerry had a softball game to play and David B. took me back to my motel.  It had been a great Tuesday, April 19, 2011 with the guys and David B. warmly expressed his "see ya later" (I hate "good bye").  We were all very tired after a very full, fantastically rewarding day and I expressed my concern for David B.'s safety back home, as the front started to roll in.  Fortunately, he was driving home ahead of the front, as it was to the west of Little Rock as he rocketed south.

Sitting at the motel, awaiting my wife and daughter to arrive from the diamond fields, waiting to go eat and resting (it was raining too hard by this time to walk next door to an eatery), I pondered it all....

Bud S. (

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