My Radio Bloopers Part 2 - Gloria Gaynor's I Will Survive.......Didn't Survive
There are some horrifying moments that can happen while doing a live radio show. These are things that come up that can't be controlled. The year was 1978 and I just started a part time radio gig on a station in Sussex County, NJ. This was my first paid radio job on a commercial FM station. I was an excited kid raring to go.
One evening while on the air and still getting familiar with the format and the studio ,Gloria Gaynor's 12 inch of "I WIll Survive" was spinning on the turntable. I loved that song and was really getting into the music and the fact that I was actually playing it for many listeners. As the song began to end, I realized that I had a commercial break coming up next. There was a carousel holding all of the commercial taped cartridges sitting next to the turntable where Gloria was spinning and doing her thing. Time was running out and I was frantically trying to find the commercials I had to air . I spun the carousel too hard and then it happened, the unthinkable. The entire cartridge rack came crashing down on poor Gloria! The needle flew up and the record broke to pieces!! My heart was beating so fast I thought it would come out of my chest! That was it, my radio career as over.
I began to pick up the pieces of Gloria and put them in a bag. Being a newbie, I forgot that nothing was on the air. Phones began to light up. It was about 2:00am which thank goodness probably saved my career. I disconnected the phones, and quickly put on another record on the turntable. I was waiting for the "dreaded" red phone light to come on. That was the manager's line. It never happened. I began to gain control of myself again and continue. At the end of my shift, I threw the bag containing the pieces of the Gloria Gaynor 12 inch in the dumpster in the back of the building. The evidence was destroyed or so I thought.
The next week we had a scheduled staff meeting, one of the station owners who was kid of rough around the edges, asked "what happened to the Gloria Gaynor, I Will Survive 12 inch? He took a small piece of the record out of his pocket. I must have turned green but if I admitted to this, I was afraid that he would fire me on the spot. He was known to do that. He got louder and louder as everyone sat silently. I felt like squirming but I had to try to remain calm. Luckily after the ranting continued for 15 minutes, he was on to the next agenda item never to bring up Gloria's demise again!