Saturday, June 20, 2015

R. I. P ALAN ALMOND - MYSTERIOUS HOST OF RADIO'S PILLOW TALK

For a brief time, Pillow Talk with Alan Almond aired in Springfield, Missouri, on a radio station where I worked. At the time, I was lead to believe, by some, that worked with me, at the radio station, that I was the only person in the world that liked this show. However, if you was to do a search on the Internet on Alan Almond, you would find he was a legend in Detroit radio. Of course, I would always get the old saw about how "Ozarkers don't like it," so, of course, it has to be banned from the air waves.

Alan Almond died this week at age 67. You notice that there is no photo of Alan Almond at the top of this post. That is because there isn't a known photo of Alan Almond. The radio station he worked for, WNIC in Detroit, and the syndication company that produced Pillow Talk, never sent a photo of Alan. Just a silhouette, similar to those used on Facebook, when someone doesn't upload a profile photo.

Almond originated the "love song" show in the late 70s on WNIC in Detroit. He talked about it in an article on the Jacobs Media blog earlier this year. Many major and small markets heard about the show's success and created their own version. However, in the late 90s, a major radio syndication company began distributing a "love songs" show from Seattle, hosted by an annoying, sappy, preachy woman with the same name as a hair-cutting, Biblical siren. This woman took calls from people with elaborate sob stories and she played sappy, sentimental songs for them, while telling listeners not to drink soda or not to let your kids play with video games.

I bring this show up (without giving the name) because, when I first went to work for that radio station in Springfield, Missouri, they were the affiliate for the radio show hosted by the woman with the same name as the hair-cutting, Biblical siren. The syndication company was bought out by a large radio corporation (their initials were C-C), they immediately decided that since they owned a radio station in Springfield, their radio station should air that show. They fired a woman, who hosted a local "love songs" show and took the show, hosted by the woman with the same name as a hair-cutting, Biblical siren, away from the radio station where I worked. Personally, I didn't cry over not having to hear the woman with the same name as the hair-cutting, Biblical siren. We replaced her with Pillow Talk with Alan Almond.

Supposedly, everyone in Springfield hated Alan Almond. I don't believe that, because I spoke to some people, who preferred Alan Almond to that woman who has the same name as the hair-cutting, Biblical siren. One thing I should point out is that men said they liked Alan Almond better than the woman with the same name as the hair-cutting, Biblical siren. I noticed the co-workers that hated the show were older people. Go figure. Of course, Ozarkers like preachy stuff.

This is why I was surprised that several of my co-workers alerted me to the death of Alan Almond earlier this week. Then again, these were real on-air radio people. They understood what made Alan Almond great. He created a magic world that he transported you to where wishes came true and love was the most important thing one could possess. He always talked about embracing your inner child, which maybe why Ozarkers hated him (Ozarkers hate kids). Also, Alan Almond didn't played what was know in radio at the time as "quiet storm music" or light R & B, another no-no in the Ozarks.

How better to pay tribute one of radio's greatest voices than with two of his most famous "bits." The "Make a Wish" segment and his closing with "Summer Madness" by Kool & the Gang playing in the background. On the syndicated show, he would use a line borrowed from Red Skelton, "If you remember something I said and it makes you smile, then our time together was well spent. Sweet dreams angel."


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