Know Your Local Media: Col. St. James on the Texas Radio Hall of Fame and Naked Strippers on the KLOL Console
Getting into the Texas Radio Hall of Fame is a big deal when you consider the company includes Wolfman Jack and George Carlin among others. One local dee jay, Colonel St. James of 93.7 the Arrow, is among them. He has been on air since the 1970s and has worked at just about every rock and roll station imaginable including the legendary 101 KLOL.
Courtesy BCL Photography
While the radio business has changed dramatically over the years, the Colonel just keeps "spinning that hot wax" like he always has. Of course, there are probably fewer naked strippers adorning his control room console these days, but the beat goes on.
Here are his five questions.
As an aside, the last paragraph of his responses was something he insisted on being added. After my father died in 2008, St. James contacted me out of the blue on Facebook and asked if I was his son. He told me how my father, who was a long-time teacher for the Houston Independent School District and a former radio man himself, was the reason he ended up in radio, something that meant a great deal to me at the time and still does.
You've been in radio a long time. What have been the most significant changes to the industry since when you started?
Radio certainly has changed since I started in the seventies. I used to walk into the studio, put a record on the turntable, and not only be heard all over the Houston area, but if the atmospheric conditions were right, I was talking to the Rio Grande Valley. Now, my music is all on a computer, it's digital (No more pops and scratches), and because of streaming on the Internet, I have listeners all over the world. As a matter of fact, I'm the most popular Disk Jockey in Antarctica! For real!
What is the craziest on-air experience you ever had?
At KLOL our studio walls were covered from floor to ceiling with pictures of our Rock and Roll Army members. Thousands of photos! One night I had a date with a lady who worked at the infamous Montrose gentleman's club, the Boobie Rock. We convinced her to pose totally nude lying across the control board in the studio, we shot Polaroids (Remember those?), hung them on the wall. The next afternoon the owner's son came into the studio and asked if we had any new pictures. I said, "Well...these." He looked them over and said, "Those are nice....and ...uh...THOSE ARE HERE!!" Those were the days!