Radio Legends Lost: Remembering Jack Bell and Brad Edwards
The world of local radio lost a couple of legends just days apart. The thing about this industry is that we are behind the microphone. For the most part, we can go about our daily lives and no one at the grocery checkout stand knows who we are standing next to you. Strike up a conversation and they might say, "You sound familiar."
Jack Bell passed away a few days ago. You might not recognize him, but you sure knew his voice. His Billings radio career started in the early '80s at Y-93. He moved from the radio mic to the advertising mic with his own advertising company. Listening to Billings radio, you heard his voice on "Chase Hawks", "Clark Avenue Jewelers", "Montana Hot Spring Spas" and many more. I first met Jack almost 40 years ago applying for a radio job for his station. I was a young, snot-nosed kid who sounded like a 15-year-old and unsure. He politely said no, knowing I would have to put in my time in the trenches somewhere else.
Brad Edwards held down the jazz show on public radio KEMC. I did not know him personally, but I admired his craft. He worked his craft for 30+ years. Being a jazz fan myself, I would find myself listening to him on the radio, heading home after a long day at my radio stations. Brad also an amazing musician. I did get to hear him often as he was one of the most sought after drummers in the region.
Everybody has their strengths and weaknesses. These two gentlemen put their strengths on display every day for all of Billings to enjoy.