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Eddie Money talks about his morning radio gig and his Wild Bill’s concert Nov. 18

eddie-money-shot

Eddie Money can be heard daily on 97.1/The River. CREDIT: SPECIAL/Anthony Neste

That whole sex, drugs and rock and roll cliche? Eddie Money has lived it.

Now at age 62, he’s married and been clean and sober for two years. But rock and roll remains in his blood. And he’s now trying a new gig as morning host of 97.1/The River, the local classic rock station.

“I hope this radio thing works out,” Money said in a recent phone interview from his home in Westlake Village, Calif. to promote his radio show and an upcoming concert at Wild Bill’s Nov. 18.  “These people at the River are really nice. To be able to do radio every day is so cool. I’m [bleepin'] loving it!”

He’s enjoying the job so much, he said he’s considering getting a place in Atlanta. “I should have been born in the south,” said Money, who’s from Brooklyn, N.Y. “I love eating fried chicken and hushpuppies. I like the Braves and the Dirty Birds.”

Money, who calls himself “the Money man” on air, does his show most of the time from his home. “Dont’ touch that dial,” he said Tuesday morning. “I’ll smack your fingers!”

He will sometimes tape bits in advance but will go live as well. He has no compunction going on the air at 6 a.m. EST (3 a.m. his time), work for three hours, then go to sleep as the sun is going up. “I’m like Dracula. I stay up all night,” he said.

The rocker remains a busy man, touring 150 dates a year with a collection of hits such as “Baby Hold On,” “Shakin’,” “Think I’m in Love” and “Take Me Home Tonight.” The River plays all those songs.

Lee Cagle, the River program director, said Cox Radio was seeking celebrity jocks for the River and Money “tested really high.” Cagle had a friend in Los Angeles broach the idea to Money.

Money was receptive and within six weeks, they had a deal in place.

“We just have to feed him the right things to say,” Cagle said. “He’s already come to Atlanta several times so he gets to learn the city.”

Cagle said he’s training Money on the art of radio. “He’s catching on pretty quickly,” he said. Sometimes, Money gets so excited, he talks too fast and his distinctive Brooklyn accent becomes too heavy, Cagle said. “He has to remember he’s not on stage. Slow down. Take it back a notch! He’s catching himself now.”

“It’s short term for now to see how it works,” Cagle added. “But we all want it to work. We’re putting a lot into it.”

Money’s advice to Cagle? “Play more of me!” (Money has had 11 songs on the Billboard magazine top 40.)

Greg Kihn, a fellow 1970s/80s rock star best known for hits such as “Jeopardy” and “The Breakup Song,” transitioned into a full-time morning jock at a rock station in San Jose, Calif. the past 13 years ago.”You need a lot of [courage] to go from rock and roll to radio,” said Kihn, a friend of Money’s. Other stars with regular shows include Alice Cooper, Mike Reno of Loverboy and Nikki Sixx of Motley Crue.

“Radio,” Kihn said, “is a sprint, not a marathon. It’s fraught with peril. There are days you don’t feel good. You had a gig the night before and you’re hung over. You have to suck it up and do it. That’s what makes you a professional.”

Concert preview

Eddie Money

9:30 p.m. Friday. Nov. 18.

$25.65 to $112.80 after fees. Wild Bill’s Atlanta, 2075 Market St., Duluth. 678-473-1000. www.ticketmaster.com

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By Rodney Ho, Radio & TV Talk

12 comments Add your comment

finally

November 8th, 2011
5:29 pm

It sounds a bit “smoke and mirrors” and not relateable to me. I enjoed Kaedy in he mornings and I am glad she is still there.

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Dain

November 8th, 2011
11:49 pm

I’ve been listening to Greg Kihn for over a decade in San Jose and he’s now the morning host of KFOX FM Classic Rock 102.1 San Francisco/98.5 San Jose, the largest Classic Rock superstation west of the Mississippi. His show is great and filled with countless Rock and Roll war stories. He never tells the same story twice. If Eddie is half as good as Greg Kihn, the people in Atlanta are in for a treat. There’s just something about those Classic Rockers telling their backstage stories that keep me listening and it’s amazing their still alive… thankfully! Enjoy Atlanta. Eddie should be GREAT.

ETM4ever

November 9th, 2011
8:43 am

Congrats to Eddie Money…..I did not even know he was still alive!

KD

November 9th, 2011
9:28 am

Listen to Eddie every morning going to work, he does a fantastic job !!

SadPanda

November 9th, 2011
11:58 am

RIP Eddie…..you will be missed.

Sheldon

November 9th, 2011
1:00 pm

He’s OK, but it sounds so scripted and he’s just saying the words. Very uncomfortable. Sounds like sound bytes advertising an upcoming concert instead of being the full time DJ. How can he do that from CA and have any sincerity?

Kaley Fornia

November 9th, 2011
1:48 pm

I love me some Eddie Mahoney!!!!

Ricky

November 9th, 2011
1:48 pm

I love Eddie Money’s music. But seriously, it does sound like he pre-records the morning radio stuff in his basement (kinda reminds me of a college station dj). Just too mellow for my taste. The fact that he is by himself and doesn’t have anyone to banter with probably doesn’t help either.

Michellea

November 10th, 2011
2:54 pm

Atlanta radio is awful. And the fact that they are training the morning DJ on-air is proof.

Dave

November 10th, 2011
6:16 pm

“We just have to feed him the right things to say….” Might that be the reason he sounds canned to the commentors above?

Amy Wen

November 10th, 2011
8:30 pm

In a nation of 350 million, he’s the best you can do? seriously