Besides hosting the Wednesday afternoon Sittin' at the Crossroads blues show, Dennis "Big D" Schaibly, also volunteers countless hours administering our Livewire Music Calendar, doing production for Piano Night and many other events, and even he helped renovate our new offices. He helped pioneer some of WWOZ's live broadcast series and has contributed in so many ways to the station.
Big D spends more time than anyone else on the WWOZ website as the volunteer administrator of the Livewire. He types in every club entry for every band performing in the city and makes sure the time and the venue are right and something that you can rely on when you go out looking for great live New Orleans music.
Big D's story of how he ended up at WWOZ is similar to that of many other volunteers. Dennis says, "I had long been an occasional volunteer at WWOZ, when in the spring of 2000, I was between jobs and I had time to spend at OZ on the phone bank." He first teamed up with Fred "Freddie Blue" Goodrich to work on producing some wonderful live shows including the "'OZ VIBES from the Studio," series which featured monthly hour-and-a-half live performances by local bands.
Dennis has now gone on to host his own show and still finds time to work on the Livewire Music Calendar. We asked Dennis how many hours a week he puts in on the music calendar. Dennis said: "I would say that I spend around 2 to 2-1/2 hours each day spread across 3 to 4 sessions. I do some in the morning when I get up. If I can catch a break in my day, I will log on and take care of a few in the afternoon. Then in the evening I will get the most done."
The volunteer position has its perks, as Dennis says: "It is a bonus to know what's going on around town. I hear about a lot of shows that I might not otherwise know about until it is too late to schedule." Most recently Dennis helped renovate the office space for our bookkeeper. We salute Dennis for all of his hard work and his obvious love for everything WWOZ. So the next time you check out the Livewire Music Calendar or hear our Livewire on the air, think of "Big D" and how much difference one volunteer can make.