The area of the country I live in has seen many talented people come and go in television, in radio and on the athletic field. Most of these people feel the need to take their talents elsewhere. The book I'm reviewing for this post is about one of the unselfish few who stay and use their talents for the betterment of the community.
One of the media friends I have made since I started blogging is Sue Wilson, who happens to be the program director of Akron, Ohio country music station WQMX and morning show co-host. Sue had told me that Larry Morrow was one of her positive influences during her career in radio.
This is Larry Morrow...My Life on and off the Air is the autobiography of one of the classic good guys of the Cleveland airwaves. Larry tells us about his life, how he got into radio, and why he moved to, and fell in love with, Cleveland.
Larry Morrow was one of the original WIXY Supermen, the lineup of disc jockeys that helped make WIXY/1260 the legendary station it was. Larry tells quite a bit about the others, especially those behind the scenes, that helped make WIXY the success it was. At that time, he was the midday personality there and his audience was mainly housewives. In playing to that audience, there was a daily contest called what's cooking, where Larry would reveal ingredients to a recipe one by one in between playing the hits of the day.
Next stop was 3WE, where he would replace legendary announcer, Jim Runyon. It was those days I listened to him as I got ready to go to school. I used to enjoy hearing about when he got his morning coffee from David's Place, especially asking newsman Hugh Daneceau if he enjoyed his coffee. It usually was responded to by a tape of wrestler Pampero Firpo saying "ohhhh yeah."
Larry also chronicled his years behind the mike at WQAL. Wherever he stopped, he always left a positive imprint. The title that he was most proud of was "Mr. Cleveland," one he wore with pride. Larry first moved to Cleveland during the Hough riots in 1966, and he has spent the last 40 plus years working with civic leaders for the betterment of his adopted community.
This book is a very easy and enjoyable read. Even though it's about the life and career of Larry Morrow, there's ample credit to go around to everybody in his life. In the times in his career when things could have gone better, Larry spent very little time being bitter. To me that's the sign of a good pro and a great man. And you can feel safe letting anybody in your family read this book as Larry, a born again Christian, used no offensive language in the writing of the book.
If you have a love for Cleveland radio, or have a love for Cleveland period, this book is a must read. If you know anyone who has a love for the above mentioned topics, this would make a great Christmas present. Click here to order from Amazon.com.
Cliff Note: I want to thank Jane Lassar, publicist at Gray and Company for providing me with the resources for this post.