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The Robinson Report – Legend

“Some people hear their own inner voices with great clearness.And they live by what they hear.Such people become crazy- or they become legend.”Jim Harrision 

Sheltering At Home affords the luxury of consuming extraordinary loads of media.

 Watching Michael Jordan’s The Last Dance, his statue flashed in front of the 1901 West Madison shrine.

Then this thought – what statue would be lifted in front of a hypothetical ‘Top 40 Hall Of Fame’.

Sure – plenty of Chicago legends would be in play – Lujack, Weber, Brittan, Bishop, Landecker, Biondi – even Gehron. All deserving of the title.

 The word – LEGEND – is thrown around today with greater frequency. Most times it is confused with simply with –  ‘old’.

That statue could only belong to one.

Many reading this faintly knew his name or grew to know it as I did after reading it on reel-to-reel tape in Bloomington, Indiana.

Bill Drake did more to affect what YOU hear today than any other programmer.

Non-radio friends – find a tutorial herehere or here

His vision and the results are too ample to include in this space. 

In his prime, Bill had a ‘Rock Star’ aura where, if he were visiting a station or industry event, people would scamper to get a snapshot with him.

National endorsements for non-industry products followed him like this one featured in Life Magazine.

Today, aging programmers carry the badge of ‘Drake PD’ with honor – as they should. We lost the original Boss PDfour years back. 

Drake programmers were the first drilled in ‘The Drake Way’ of Top 40 with tight formatics, high energy breaks and disciplined clocks.

Bill led the way for LOCAL research knowing that every market was uniquely different while his slick atmospherics buttered the bread.

My exposure to Bill was short but priceless. Most of it inside his storied  Topanga Canyon Boulevard ‘office’, opening at 3pm in Woodland Hills.

Hours were spent pouring over music research and styles, discussing clock structure and ‘forward momentum’ – hanging on every word of a superior mentor.

Although he passed before the industry reluctantly embraced digital measurement, his Boss Radio brand was truly ‘PPM ready’. 

Those who work with me hear those familiar terms.

Now you know the tree from which it grew.

The legend rests – but the long shadow of Bill Drake’s legacy lives.

Next Week: Tell Me A Story