By Jim Schutze
By Rachel Watts
By Lauren Drewes Daniels
By Anna Merlan
By Lee Escobedo
By Alice Laussade
By Scott Reitz
But those days are gone now. Radio stations are no longer like families, the listener included; it's doubtful they ever really were. But the illusion is, once and for all, shattered into 10 pieces--the number of on-air talent fired from Q102 last week. To those who grew up in Dallas, the radio landscape is all but unrecognizable now. Love it or hate it, Q102 was a constant, an outlet for those who liked their music with less sugar and more salt. Now, 102.1 is another musical geriatric ward; on Dallas radio, it's never any later than 1978.
"I was sitting out at the Ballpark in Arlington watching a Rangers game the other night, and a guy came up to me and asked for my autograph on a baseball glove," Redbeard recalls.
"Clearly, he hadn't seen you play," Wiley interrupts, and all the jocks at the table break into tumultuous laughter.
Redbeard, his face red, begins again. "And he said, 'Man, I've listened to your station since the middle '70s, when y'all started.'" He pauses, glances downward, then looks back up at the colleagues he'll never work with again. "This guy still was listening. The thing he said and the thing I hear from so many people over the years is Q102 was never mean-spirited, it was never cynical.
"As Andy Lockridge said the other day, there's a dark underside to rock and roll in general, and Q102 never focused on that. It always was a station run by the good guys, where the community was involved. And we always had fun.