Saturday, May 17, 2008

Perks Of The Job/What I'm Reading

In my latest career venture, I am producing for two great guys on KMOX. John Carney does the nightshift from 8p-11p Monday through Friday. He's not a guy who like to take phone calls much, but as an interviewer, he has few peers. Jon Grayson, who does 11p-2a, is the exact opposite, he likes the phone action and will occaisionally request a guest or two. He is one of the best at getting people to call the station. In my job, I get "pitched" by just about anyone who wants something publicized. Whether it's an event, a concert, a book or whatever. It is very challenging and the hours are long but in many ways fun. I am blessed to be still hanging on in the business and being someone that KMOX can count on.
Thinking that John likes two guests an hour, over a week, that's 30 people to line up. Each week. Each one should be interesting and/or compelling. Last night, we talked to:

Carl Haissen, (who happens to be one of my favorite authors), Kenneth Davis, who wrote the book "Don't Know Much About History","Don't Know Much About Geography", etc. (he was plugging his new book), a preview of a two hour interview with Wilco's Jeff Tweedy,

comedian Tammy Pescatelli and since it was Friday night, he finished the show with games.

Next week, we'll talk to Cokie Roberts, Karen Allen, Lincoln Hall (the guy who was left for dead at the top of Mt. Everest) etc.
My job is to contact all of those people's people, line their schedules up with ours, set up the show making sure the guys have all of the audio and information (bios and press releases) they need and then calling back all of those people to confirm on the day of the show. How cool is that? The other cool thing about the job is some of the things that cross my desk.

Like the new biography of Warren Zevon. Warren was an acquired taste, I really liked a lot of his stuff but, in that vein, some of it was over my head. Jon Grayson will be interviewing Crystal Zevon on Monday, she has written a new book about of course, Warren. Most PR people send the book along with the pitch, usually a couple at a time. With their permission, I requested my own copy of this one and I can't put it down. I will say that one of Warren Zevon's favorite quotes was "I got to be Jim Morrison for a longer time than he did". I guess.
Here's the review I found on Amazon:
For those who know them, the brilliant, dark songs of Warren Zevon (1947-2003) inspire nothing short of adoration; for those who don't, this stunning biography of the irrepressible rock 'n' roll singer/songwriter should send them sprinting to the nearest record store. By taking an unexpurgated, oral-history approach to Warren's life, his former wife and lifelong friend Crystal has crafted a sharp, funny, jaw-dropping rock biography that's among the best of the sub-genre. Provocative and unflinching, her account distills Warren's journal entries and the author's exhaustive interviews with 87 family members, business associates, band mates, fellow musicians and former lovers into a chronology ranging from Warren's ancestry to his death, at age 56, from lung cancer. The impetus for the book was Warren himself-he implored Crystal to tell his story and to "promise you'll tell 'em the whole truth, even the awful, ugly parts." The awful, ugly parts turn up often: Warren's addictions (to alcohol, drugs and sex), personal demons (intense obsessive-compulsion and commitment-phobia) and paternal shortcomings (to him, kids were nuisances) all get plenty of play here. But so does Warren's music, for which peers like Jackson Browne, Bruce Springsteen and Paul Schaffer offer plenty of insight. This top-notch biography is a must-read for fans, and a highly rewarding read for anyone interested in a close look at the life of a modern rock icon. Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

1 comment:

Matt said...

Cool gig. Sounds like my time producing sports you say - some guys are interview guys, and some guys like to hit the phones non-stop.

The Warren book was great. Just great.

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