Captain Craig "Tidbits" (Did Ya Know?)
"Tidbits" (Did Ya Know?)
Captain Craig was on the air when Elvis died. The radio station teletype machine was "dinging" to indicate a urgent news item. He thought it was just another weather bulletin (until he read the text). He immediately returned to the control room, picked the needle up off of the record that was playing and sadly announced: "Elvis Aaron Presley, the King of Rock N Roll, is dead". [Newspaper article here!]
As a young 16 year old "Baby DJ", Captain Craig served as ring announcer at a local high school's "Night of Wrestling". The names he read that evening meant nothing to him (because these were all unknown wrestlers). Some 20 years later, he stumbled upon the old scorecard he'd read that night and for the first time realized that he'd introduced a very young, Randy "Before Macho Man" Savage.
Captain Craig was the next to last rapper heard on the 1979 Savannah radio hit "Unwrapper's Delight" but he was actually the first one to lay down his vocals at Ragdoll Studios. It was later re-sequenced and the finished recording was played every two hours on 95SGF during the holiday season. [Listen here!]
During his music career, Captain Craig has attended numerous listening parties, artist meet-n-greets and private performances. One that stands out was an invitation-only gathering in early 1997 at the Hard Rock Cafe in downtown Atlanta. It was The Atlanta Rhythm Section's 25th Anniversary Party.
On a warm South GA day in 1976, Captain Craig personally witnessed U.S. President Jimmy Carter's mom, Miss Lillian (whom he was sittin' next to in a rocking chair at the Plains Depot), tell a Yankee touring Plains what he could "do" with his complaints. Later that same day, Captain Craig visited with legendary NBC News anchorman, John Chancellor, watching him prep for his national news broadcast.
Before he was an Academy Award nominated actor, Will Smith was a rapper called "The Fresh Prince". In the late 80's, Captain Craig had the pleasure of hangin' out with Will Smith (& his counterpart D.J. Jazzy Jeff) at a private waterfront reception held in celebration of the duo's latest CD release.
When the Space Shuttle Columbia exploded during descent, Captain Craig was on-air doing his Saturday morning Oldies Show (while watching a live video of Columbia on the control room TV with the volume down). He promptly went on the air and relayed the tragic news adding, "It's difficult to know what to say at times like this but I feel led to play this song"... [The Lord's Prayer" by Sister Janet Mead].
Captain Craig's only television appearance came in 1980 on WTOC-TV
(Channel 11) in Savannah, GA when he was a co-host on the "Jerry Lewis Muscular
Dystrophy Labor Day Telethon". To say he was a "fish out of water" is
an understatement. Now we know why Captain Craig was 'only' a "Radio DJ"...
While working on Jacksonville radio, Captain Craig talked frequently with Jax's hottest bands. Gary Rossington & Dale Krantz (of Lynyrd Skynrd fame) would call "The Captain" and ask him to play the single edit of the latest Rossington Collins Band hit (over the phone) so they could hear the "45 mix". Another regular caller to Captain Craig was the mom of Mike Campbell, lead guitarist in (what was at the time) an emerging rock band... That band's name??... Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers! During his Atlanta years, one of Captain Craig's semi-regular callers (off air) was singer/songwriter, Joe South.
Radio technology has evolved over the years but Captain Craig has worked on the air with all of the audio formats of the last half century: 45 RPM records, Albums, Tape Cartridges, Compact Discs, Cassettes, Computer Audio (MP3/WAV), etc.
In the late 90's, Captain Craig took a stab at songwriting. Having conceived an idea for a song called "Right Here Where You Left Me", he reached out to Nashville's songwriting community for an interested co-writer. That's how he hooked up with Nick Nixon, a major label recording artist for Mercury and MCA Records in the 70's. Captain Craig didn't know at the time that Nick was already a very successful songwriter (having written one of the biggest country hits of the 1970's, "The Teddy Bear Song", recorded by Barbara Fairchild). You can hear the demo recording of "Right Here Where You Left Me", co-written and sung by Nick Nixon here. [ In order to play the audio file, you will need RealPlayer.]
Captain Craig had an awkward backstage moment when he casually asked Stevie Wonder for his thumbprint. (For those of you who may not know, Stevie's "autograph" is his "thumbprint".) Rule number one: Never ask a recording artist for a thumbprint autograph unless you have an inkpad nearby...
Over his diverse music career, Captain Craig has produced numerous CD collections for national distribution. The artist's names on these CD's are familiar to us all. We've begun compiling a discography of these CD's, but (until complete) you can check out some of his latest projects here.
In the early 90's, Captain Craig had the pleasure of spending an afternoon with former GA governor Lester Maddox at his home in Marietta. (Thanks Jimmy!) It was an afternoon filled with recollections of his years as governor plus a browse of his office full of mementos. Before he left, the Governor and Mrs. Maddox loaded up "The Captain" with Maddox t-shirts, books and albums (all signed by Mr. Maddox.)
Lynryd Skynyrd kicked off their 1977 "Tour Of The Survivors" on October 13th at Hanner Field House in Statesboro, Georgia. This tour was in support of their brand new album "Street Survivors". Captain Craig attended this concert and witnessed first hand the magic of the 'original' Lynyrd Skynyrd band. One week later, lead singer Ronnie Van Zant, guitarist Steve Gaines, b/g vocalist Cassie Gaines, assistant road manager Dean Kilpatrick, pilot Walter McCreary and co-pilot William Gray were killed (and other band members were seriously injured) in a tragic plane crash in Gillsburg, Mississippi.
Captain Craig has been recognized with gold and platinum awards from major recording artists like Hank Williams, Jr. and Tim McGraw and received numerous handwritten notes from music business legends such as Garth Brooks, Hank, Jr., Phil Walden, Luciano Pavarotti, Casey Kasem, etc...
In the late 70's, Hurricane David hit the Georgia coast. Captain Craig volunteered to "ride out the storm" at the radio station on a barrier island. Who knew when the power (or radio station) would be back on. Would any listeners still be tuned in after several days of "dead air"? The first thing heard on the air when the station came back on was Captain Craig giving away albums, t-shirts, movie tickets, etc. Was anyone listening? The phone lines were full within seconds. That's dedicated listeners!
QUESTION: What do Tom Glavine, John Smoltz, Phil Neikro, Bobby Cox, John Schuerholz, Bruce Benedict, Mark Lemke and Pete Van Wieren (plus numerous others that evening) have in common? They were entertained by their DJ "Captain Craig" at a Private Party in the early 2000's. GO BRAVES!
Imagine hearing The Byrds "Mr. Tambourine Man" played live on stage... How 'bout it being played to a small audience... What if Roger McGuinn picked his 12 string Rickenbacker and sang as you sat less than three feet away from his guitar frets?... Well, Captain Craig lived it and calls it a "magical moment".
Captain Craig had the honor of working with Dick Clark at an Oldies Show in Jacksonville (featuring Bo Diddley, Danny & The Juniors, etc) . He recalls Dick as "just like you'd expect, kind and professional" and the only person he'd ever seen then (or since) with a "dc" logo on the back pocket of their jeans.
DOOR # 1... In the early 90's, Captain Craig was awaiting Smokey Robinson's appearance at a private reception when he went searching for the nearest "facility". Walking through the closest unlabelled doors, he found much more than expected. In a span of 30 seconds, he met Herschel Walker, Sugar Ray Leonard and Evander Holyfield. Captain Craig had accidentally entered a Sports Legends party.
Captain Craig briefly managed a metro record store in the late 80's. One of his part-time employees said "you might know my dad". Yes indeed!! The employee's (Brittany's) dad was Berry Oakley, bass player for the Allman Brothers. That's her on the back cover of the Allmans' "Brothers & Sisters" album.
In the late 70's (on St. Patrick's Day) in Savannah, Captain Craig would entertain loyal revelers with music and entertainment aboard 95SGF's "Boogie Boat". It was a 'funtastic' time for all involved!
Captain Craig worked in the music business but would have the opportunity to meet screen stars like Fred MacMurray (My Three Sons), Spanky McFarland (Little Rascals), George "Goober" Lindsey (Andy Griffith Show), Will Smith (Men In Black), Frank "Herb" Bonner (WKRP), John Schneider (Dukes Of Hazzard) and Butterfly " I don't know nothin' about birthin' babies" McQueen (Gone With The Wind).
Check your skills in finding the words in the Captain
Craig word search puzzle.
CLICK HERE to play!
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