Monday, August 10, 2009

"Coffee Country & Cody" AND Charlie!

Such is the title yours truly would give to the weekday wake-up show on radio WSM-AM 650. The actual name is in quotations, but I insist on giving Bill Cody's side-kick Charlie Mattos his due. Without Charlie the show wouldn't be such joy for the listening ear! Without Charlie, who would Bill make amusing comments about or to? Who'd he carry on stimulating conversation with? And who''d run the show in Cody's absence, as he was just now for a ten day vacation up to last Wed.?

Well, during the truly "Coffee Country & Charlie" show's ten-day run, Charlie gave me tickets for the show's broadcast from the Ford Theater of the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, Friday 7 Aug. And I was there "with bells on", or any rate with a necktie on. The recently returned-from-vacation Bill wore the "Regis look" of monochromatic shirt and tie, both black.

Charlie had been announcing that guests would include Hall of Famer Ralph Emery, who among other things was WSM overnite deejay, then host of eponymous wake-up show on WSMV-TV 4, then host of "Nashville Now" on TNN, and 1970s-1980s country singer Razzy Bailey. I enjoyed these guests, especially Emery, whose Channel 4 wake-up show held me as fan during the late 1980s. But better still was Gary Bonnett. I hadn't heard of this young man before Friday, but he made quite a positive impression on me. (This is becoming a regular feature of C C & C; Bill & Charlie introduce somebody new to me as their interviewee and I proceed to get impressed.)

Gary Bonnett is a young man from a very small town in West Virginia, whom Bill had met during a major country music event way out West a few months ago. The young man came out wearing a charming smile and holding a guitar and accompanied by a young lady vocalist. During the show Gary sang three songs that he himself had written, and all of them were quite good! It also came out during his conversations with host Bill that Gary had taken seven years to get thru Marshall University in his home State, and not just because of the "distraction" of a budding career in songwriting and country singing. For in response to 9-11 Gary had joined the Air Force and served our nation in Afghanistan and Iraq (he gave me these details himself while we spoke one-on-one during a break). So I most certainly wish young Mr. Bonnett much success in his music career!

And then there was The "grudge match" of the "Money-in-a-Minute" game. Team Charlie had won the first match in June, Team Cody the second last month, which I had witnessed since these are played during the sessions in the Ford Theater. Each team consists of one of the deejays, along with an audience guest who's chosen just before the game. These folks just sit there while Bill or Charlie attempt to answer country music trivia questions posed to them by one of their WSM bosses. I was strong in supporting Team Charlie, but alas! the first round was a shut-out by Bill (and his silent partner). Team Charlie got a couple of points in the second round, but this wasn't nearly en'uf, as Team Cody won handily. And his accompanying guest received $500 cash on the spot.

The game is very much in fun (setting aside the seriousness of the winner receiving 500 greenbacks). The show itself is very fun, with Bill AND Charlie. Great to listen to every weekday morning and even better to be there in person when they do broadcasts from the Ford Theater ( or other "remote" sites).

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks, for the kind words about "Ralph Emery". He's one great man.

Walter Ralph Emery Jr. "Kit"
Kingston Springs, TN