Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Shrinking the world … via my blog

Recently I had a comment from a reader in Pune, Maharashtra, India. Now, that’s a “fer piece” from North Carolina, USA, as they say here in the South …

but that’s not what amazed me. What really got to me was when I clicked on his blog and read his profile, only to find that his favorite Country Western singer was a man named Jim Reeves.

Some of you “oldsters” will remember that name and I will never forget it because I was employed at WABC radio in NY City in the late 1950’s and actually worked with Jim.

1957 was a very shaky time for the radio industry. Stations were losing audiences by the droves (as TV was just cresting on the horizon) and WABC was making a last ditch stand with their promotion, “Live and Lively Radio”.

The idea was to present interesting personalities performing live on the radio. The “Jim Reeves Show” and the “Merv Griffin Show” were two of them. We also had “Don McNeill’s Breakfast Club” that aired from Chicago.

My job was to write promotional material aimed at selling time on the live shows. Our studios were on West 86th St. and I can remember it all so clearly. I even recall how we were all impressed with the fact that Jim Reeves piloted his own plane and would fly up from the South to meet with the ABN people, although his weekly live radio shows aired from his home town.  You couldn't find a nicer person and he always treated us (the producers and the lowly writers like myself) the same. We all  were impressed with his gentle manner not to mention his one-of-a-kind voice.

Jim died when the plane that he flew crashed in 1964 but I find it wonderful that he is remembered to this day … almost forty years later and from a man as far away as Maharashtra, India.

Isn’t life fascinating???


Blogger Arkansas Patti said...

That is amazing. I remember his "Green Door" which was a cross over. He really had a deep voice.
Glad he was also a nice man.

4:15 AM  
Blogger Anvilcloud said...

Another good memory from Ginny. I don't know this guy's music, but I imagine that I might recognize some of his songs.

6:23 AM  
Blogger Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Not only do I remember Jim Reeves, but also the good ole days of WABC radio. I remember the song, Green Door, but didn't think Reeves did that one.

2:36 PM  
Blogger Beatrice P. Boyd said...

A back again, maybe it was Jim Lowe who did that song?

2:37 PM  
Blogger Syd said...

He was before my time. I think that it's good that he is remembered. And that you knew him.

8:19 PM  
Anonymous schmidleysscribblins, said...

Did Jim die in the crash that killed Ritchie Valens, the Big Bopper and others...the day the music died?

9:29 AM  
Blogger NCmountainwoman said...

I always think of "He'll have to go." Didn't know about the radio show.

10:50 AM  
Blogger Ginnie said...

No, Jim and one other passenger died when the plane he was piloting crashed. I believe that Richie Valens died in a plane crash about 6 years before Jim.

11:30 AM  
Blogger kenju said...

Indeed it is, and you would never have known that if not for your blog!!

12:19 PM  
Blogger Tossing Pebbles in the Stream said...

I remember Jim Reeves, a real country singer.

12:51 PM  
Blogger Tossing Pebbles in the Stream said...

I remember Jim Reeves, a real country singer.

12:52 PM  

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