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An Endorsement, but No Wolfman Jack

WFTX, Fox Radio, a setting out of “American Graffiti.”
My buddy Trish White-Boyd and me. Trish is running for Roanoke City Council as an incumbent.

Yesterday, I found myself in something of a quandary, having to visit a place I didn’t want to visit (Fox Radio in Roanoke) in order to record an endorsement of a Roanoke City Council candidate that I support enthusiastically. I got through it.

The station is right out of American Graffiti, a low-power AM outfit sitting deep inside Southeast Roanoke, so hard to find that I was 20 minutes late–and I am rarely late. WFTX, Fox Radio, is a talk station that features Trump supporters (I won’t call it “conservative” because the Trumpers aren’t conservative) yelling at you.

The GM and engineer (a relative of my buddy Bootie Chewning) were welcoming and more than courteous, but I had that taste of Trump in my mouth throughout. It’s like eating a persimmon.

That’s the engineer, the GM (in the window), and me (with the “mask ears”) recording.

I had written what timed out at my house to be a 30-second endorsement, but when I recorded at the station, it came out to a full minute. I had to quickly edit on the spot. I used to record essays regularly for Public Radio, so I had something of a feel for winging it and we got through the season with no blood spilled.

As I was leaving, the GM gave a friendly, “Don’t be a stranger.” I nodded, trying not to think about the damage talk radio has done to my country since Reagan’s judiciary gave it the green light (erasing the Fairness Doctrine) in the 1980s.

Would have been great to have heard Wolfman Jack’s voice at that point.

By admin

Dan Smith is an award-winning journalist in Roanoke, Va., and a member of the Virginia Communications Hall of Fame. He is an author, photographer, essayist, father and grandfather. Co-founder of Valley Business FRONT magazine and founder of the Roanoke Regional Writers Conference. On Advisory Board of New River Voice.

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