Last Friday November 10th marked the 20th anniversary of Shake the Shack.
After wrapping up a week of deluge rains, floods, and traffic from hell, I was ready to celebrate the 20th Anniversary of Shake the Shack. There were a couple of things holding me back from the long awaited event â€“ one, traffic between Snohomish and Seattle was brutal (to say the least) and two, about a 104 temperature raging through my body… along with a headache behind my eyeballs that felt like someone had strategically placed a claw hammer (claw down) in that same spot. Finally arriving at KEXP with a half hour to spare, I noticed that the parking lot was really full. I was met in the lot by KEXP Manager Tom Mara who carried my large cd carrier inside for me and congratulated me on 20 years at the station. (what… no personal parking place?)
Inside I was greeted by a contingent of KEXP staff to present me with a cake and a cool microphone from the 1930â€™s. Then the “Coup De Grass” (as we say on STS), Elvis himself appeared and sang Hound Dog to the surprise of us all.
I waited for him to give me a Cadillac… but I missed out again (that only happens to morning DJâ€™s). Then the youngest of the crowd wanted me to re-tell the story about radio with no cd players and the days of vinyl-only. As I put back in my teeth, I retold the story of KEXP, KCMU, and the days of yore. I quickly scampered to pull off the 20th Anniversary special. All the e-mails, phone calls, gifts, and a special guest appearance by Billy Joe from the Dusty 45â€™s, really rounded out the night.
I thank not only all the folks who helped me celebrate, but most of all, the listeners that make it all happen year after year. Final note â€“ after spending last Saturday in the hospital and being diagnosed with an ugly sinus infection, I am now on the mend â€“ hell, Rockabilly Music has been around a lot longer than 20 years just like I plan to be.
Still putting the “f.u.” in fun, Dr. Leon Berman