(a testimonial by Chuck Tomlinson)
To see the real Chuck Tomlinson, click on Isaac, your bartender...
I first heard of "Cosmic Slop" while working briefly during the last few months of WMMR's existence, and I've been involved at Radio K since Fall 1993. While Joel was Music Director, and I was volunteering in the music office, we discovered we both had a penchant for loading our heads with trivial tidbits of musical detritus, particularly music of the 70's and early 80's that had fallen through the cracks of your standard "oldies" radio formats.
I joined as co-host of "Cosmic Slop" in late 1995, after guest-hosting a few times, and generally hanging out around the studio making rude noises in the background during Joel's legendary 15-minute soliloquies on all things wonderful about the 1970's.
Before my life as a student and employee at the University of Minnesota, I attended Brown Institute in Minneapolis, graduating with a Associate Arts Degree in Radio-TV Broadcasting in 1988.
I worked for a little over a year at WCMP-AM/FM in Pine City, MN ("The Voice of Information for East Central Minnesota and Northwestern Wisconsin"). It was there that I learned the true meaning of local, small-market radio, as well as the music programming concept of "three polkas every hour" and the profit potential of reading obituaries and birth announcements over the airwaves.
Most importantly, I had the benefit of exploring a music library that received few new recordings after 1982, and in the process added to the list of "forgotten" hit records that I started in 1987. In time I tracked them all down, but discovered how little I actually knew, despite my family's love of 8-Track tapes, the true Top 40 era of KDWB (630 AM), and the station formerly known as WCCO-FM.
Thanks to the CD-era and the 70's retro-fever of the last couple of years, any artists that hit the charts in the 60's and 70's could have annotated anthologies and box sets available (did I mention the 2-CD package tracking the full oeuvre of Bachman-Turner Overdrive, or the "Best of Mandrill" CD available at your favorite locally-owned music store?). But there is so much more still languishing in the used vinyl bins that may never make it to the digital era.
I like that "Cosmic Slop" provides a forum for those recordings. You also hear favorites that aren't all that "lost", but you don't hear them in heavy rotation on the "oldies", "urban gold", and "classic rock" stations in town, either. That's what keeps me hunting for out-of-print LP's, as well as all the K-Tel, Ronco, or Sessions compilations I can find.
To be sure, there are people with the same mission excavating goodies from all eras of recorded music, and someday people will do the same with the 1990's (and savvy corporate types already have a good start on re-packaging the 1980's for you!)
Hopefully our passion and enthusiasm for music makes it as much fun to listen to "Cosmic Slop", as it is to host the show each week.
Chuck Tomlinson 8/5/96
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