Boston is home. Time for some lobster ravioli at Giacomos followed by a Mike’s Pastry stop for a peanut butter and chocolate cupcake and then a walk over to the Garden for a Bruins game. After 30 years of being a radio journeyman, I can’t tell you how insanely excited I am to be on the air in my favorite city.
I grew up in Westbrook, Maine as the only child of a single parent. My incredible mom worked 3 or 4 jobs at a time so she could bring me to Boston once a year. Mom and I would do the usual touristy stuff like a visit to the Museum of Science, the New England Aquarium and Faneuil Hall. But the visit would always be planned on a day when there would be a Bruins game in the afternoon so I could see my hockey heroes like Rick Middleton, Brad Park and Ray Bourque. Then later that night, there’d be a return to the Garden so I could see “Rowdy” Roddy Piper or Hulk Hogan at a WWF show. We always had nosebleed seats and stayed at cheap hotels. But I didn’t care. Those trips were always the highlight of my year. But my mother would later regret them only because she saw how much I loved Boston.
In high school, I didn’t outgrow my love for pro wrestling like most of my friends did. By that point, it was just me and my pal Scott left. We learned the moves we watched on TV and went to any live event we could afford to drive to. Scott was a skinny kid who probably weighed 130 pounds. I was 6’4. We knew which one of us was going to make it. Or so we thought.
My attention started to switch from pro wrestling to radio. Playing music, giving away cool prizes and having fun backstage at concerts… the idea that I would make a living doing that blew me away. Plus I looked terrible in pro wrestling trunks. My buddy Scott? He hit the gym and stuck with it and later became “Scotty Too Hotty” in the WWE. No regrets though for me. Right before my senior year, I came to Boston University for a summer program for high school students looking to pursue a career in media. I fell deeper in love with radio… and, to my mother’s disappointment, I fell in love with Boston too.
In 1991, the U-Haul was loaded up and I moved to Boston for the first time for college. I was accepted at Emerson and Curry College. Being a kid from Maine, city life scared me a little. Milton was a better choice for me so I was a Communications Major at Curry College. Mom would come down to visit often. I’d always take her to Trader Joe’s because they didn’t have them in Maine then. There’d always be a meal at Legal Seafoods and then I’d take her back to the bus station to ride back up to Portland. She’d break down crying before she got on the bus, but she knew Boston was where I’m happy.
At Curry College, although I had a couple great professors like Donna Halper and Boston radio legend Roger Alan Bump, my real education happened after class when I would turn on the radio. “Uncle Dale” Dorman, Howard Stern, Kid Valentine, John Garabedian, JoJo “Cookin” Kincaid, and JJ Wright taught me more than I could have ever learned from a book. I’d record their shows on cassettes that I still have to this day. Those tapes sit in a box that has moved across the country with me a half dozen times in my career stops from Worcester to Florida to California.
Fast forward to 2022. Imagine how my jaw dropped when I got a call from Cadillac Jack. He’s the head honcho here at WROR now but he was the boss of most of those amazing talents on those cassettes I just mentioned. He created the high energy sound those stations had. Cadillac Jack’s exciting brand of radio fueled my passion for this career. It blew my mind when I found out he’d heard my show online and wanted to put me on the air here in Boston. And for a station with the incredible history like WROR? I just wish my mother was still with us so she could share in my excitement. But I know she’s looking down and proud and probably really happy I didn’t end up taking steel chair shots to my head in a wrestling ring.
If you made it this far, thanks for reading. Can’t wait to share more of my stories and hear yours on 105.7 WROR weekdays. Let’s get to know each other. I’m @Geno1057WROR on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Would love to connect with you!