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Russ Martin: Unmasked

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I only listened to Russ Martin's show on Live 105.3 sporadically. I've met the guy just once. Talked with him for all of 45 seconds.

So how do you tell the story of a guy like that? You talk to everyone that knows him. That's worked for him. With him. Those that love him. And those that loathe him. Slap it all in a Petri dish and ... voila.

The end result: This week's Dallas Observer cover story.

And a couple of leftovers ...

*Russ seems like the kind of guy who will drive around in a Batmobile, then get pissed when people stare at him.

*His house parties are were legendary, featuring two polar-opposite climaxes. 1. Some nights the parties ended promptly at 11:00. Not 11:01, but 11:00. 2. Some nights, if the alcohol had been flowing freely, the parties didn't end until the wee morning, when Russ finally put down his guitar. Either way, guests were expected to bring a Tupperware side dish to his multi-million dollar mansion.

*He once offered out of the blue to have his band play for free at a wedding.

*At Live 105.3 one day Russ was in his office when management came in with a request. "Russ, do you have a quick second to meet a very important client?" the station official asked. To which Martin responded, "Nope, sure don't. And shut the door on your way out."

*A year after a strip-off for charity, Russ Martin Show co-workers noticed a brown paper bag stuffed in a corner of Russ' office. In it: $3,000. Cash. Mostly $1s.

In the final analysis, Martin seems a moody, cavalier and ultimately insecure person. Shame. Because he's also one of the most talented radio personalities in the history of Dallas radio.

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Join the Observer community and help support independent local journalism in Dallas.