|My ‘Play Misty For Me’ story! A true one!
Every disc jockey who worked an all night show probably has had a 'Misty' phone-in moment, but maybe not as scarey as Clint Eastwood’s film, but close.
Mine is a very memorable moment from the mid-Fifties. It started while I was hosting Night Club on WINR, Binghamton.
Every few weeks a delightful female voice would call in and ask for the song There’ll Never Be Another You. It is one of my favorite songs and I was always happy to play it.
The soft voice in the middle of the night would simply say, “Play it for me.”
I always knew what she wanted and would play it by Nat Cole, Beverly Kenney, Chet Baker, or whoever. It is a great song recorded by so many fine artists.
Years later I was working for WMAL Radio & TV in Washington, D.C. It was not a very good job and I only did radio on Sunday mornings and worked TV the rest of the week. A very dull job which fortunately did not last long.
One night after coming back from an Anniversary dinner with my wife the phone was ringing. My Program Director wanted me to go to the WMAL Radio studios which at that time were out near Burning Tree Country Club and fill in for Jazz DJ Bill Mayhew.
Bill did a very popular all night show for MAL but that night was under the weather. I was happy to oblige.
I drove out to the studios which were located at the transmitter and selected a stack of records much like I used to do in Binghamton. The only difference being I wouldn’t work the turntables. A Control Op did that. All I had to do was talk.
About 2:30AM that morning I answered the studio phone and heard a familiar warm voice simply say, “Play it for me.”
The hairs on the back of my neck were affected and I said, “I can’t believe it. This is you isn’t it?” She said, “Yes, and I can’t believe it it either. I was simply driving through Washington and heard your voice and it brought back so many memories. I just had to stop and call.”
I segued a couple of records and dove into the record library and came up with Beverly Kenney’s great Roost recording with Johnny Smith and played it.
Even today I have no idea who she was. I only knew the voice on the other end of the line.
A memorable broadcasting moment.
I never heard that voice in the night ever again.
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