Center Stage on Live365 this week is WZQR.FM – a five-station network featuring big band, news and talk, classical, oldies, and classic country music. We spoke with the network manager Bill Bro about their history with radio, their station's programming, and we got some music recommendations. Check out the interview below!
What made you get started in radio?
I built my first “station” in 1957, when I was 11, using an old baby monitor that transmitted on the AM band. I’ve stayed engaged as a DJ, newsman, engineer, and FM broadcast station owner ever since.
What brought you to Live365?
My intense dislike of paperwork and scofflaws who cheat hardworking performers and songwriters by refusing to pay music licensing fees.
What's your favorite part about running your own radio station?
Creating niche formats that serve unmet needs.
Tell us about your station's programming. What can listeners expect when they tune in to your station?
Adult listeners will find something unique in our five WZQR stations. It's everything from Beethoven to Buck Owens. Our big band station is actually simulcast on WZQR-LP, in Bokeelia, Florida. Our other stations are:
- WZQR Talks: News & Talk, including Into The Parabnormal with Jeremy Scott. Breaking news from Feature Story News network.
- WZQR Classical Concert Hall: The world’s most treasured classical music featuring orchestras from Europe’s concert halls, with limited commercial interruption.
- WZQR Rocks!: Top 40 songs — 1960 through 2000. Beatles, Rolling Stones, Elvis, Diana Ross, and many more.
- WZQR Classic Country: Kitty Wells, Roy Acuff, Dave Dudley, Connie Smith, Dolly, Loretta Lynn, Waylon, and some of today’s best.
Name one artist that you play on your station that is underrated in your opinion.
Al Bowlly, the singer with Ray Noble’s orchestra
What's your favorite music memory/moment?
Discovering a huge cache of 78 RPM records at a station in Wisconsin that had been on the air since the early 1920s. I turned them into a big band program on WHBL, Sheboygan, in the 1960s.
Please list your top 5 or 10 songs, with a brief reason why each song made your list.
"Mean Ol’ Moon" - Amanda Seyfried
A highly underrated vocalist
"Midnight, The Stars and You" - Al Bowlly & Ray Noble and His Orchestra
A great song from a vocalist tragically lost
"I've Got A Tiger By The Tail" - Buck Owens
"Cry Me A River" - Julie London
A track from an artist with a whopping 30 albums in a short career
"Leader of the Band" - Dan Fogelberg
What’s not to like?
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