It was a glorious day!
Over 30 years ago I found myself at my first, no adult supervision Mardi Gras. My friend Anna turned on the radio as we got costumed and I stopped in my tracks. I couldn’t believe that there was a station playing the music my father played (traditional Jazz). I was even more excited to discover that the DJs were all volunteers. Oh man, did I ever want to be in that number!
Fast forward 32 years. It was perhaps the coldest, wettest, nastiest Mardi Gras in history, but you couldn’t keep me at home. I found myself sitting behind the microphone about to share my first Mardi Gras broadcast with the world. I was shaking. Could I really convey to the rest of the world how much Carnival and its music meant to me? I put forth the challenge to those not in New Orleans, “Don’t let this be just another Tuesday!”
Before the first song was over, the phone started ringing and it was on! Listeners were calling to tell me what they were doing to celebrate Mardi Gras in their world. One lady was about to ice her king cake in Maine. One man brought donuts with sprinkles (closest he could get to a king cake in Nebraska) and coffee to work and had an early morning break room celebration for his employees while listening to WWOZ. Another listener went to work in costume in Seattle. Proving that to WWOZ listeners, it was not just another Tuesday.