New host of “Jazz in the Night,” Bob Seymour, shares fond memories of WMNF’s early days.
Bob Seymour: “I was lucky enough to be part of WQSR, a very hip Bay Area station based in Sarasota, until we lost it, Labor Day of ’79. And it was just after that when WMNF put its first test tones over the air.
“I’d come to know Cam Dilley, so I was in the loop from the start, and began hosting and programming a show on Sundays at 9 p.m. Transportation was an issue. There were times I’d hitchhike to Tampa, and often take the 12:45 a.m. Greyhound bus home, over the original Skyway Bridge.
“These were the days in the old WMNF studio on S. Boulevard–the building with the record library in a bathtub, and where you’d hear birds in the background if the announcer had the control room window open. I was really happy to be a part of it.
“My time at WMNF lasted a few months, I think, until I got a full-time job at a news station. Then the following spring, I made the move to Tampa to work at WUSF.
“Within a couple of years, I met Marian, my wife, in part because she was volunteering for the station, doing documentaries for the [WMNF] Women’s Show.
“So, about 42 have gone by, but the station has been a constant presence in my life–I’ve always felt like part of the WMNF family.
“And now, suddenly, it seems there’s a need for jazz on the airwaves, and it brings me back together with 88.5. I’m really looking forward to continuing a relationship with listeners at this remarkable station, and sharing this great music with them.”
“Jazz in the Night” airs Monday evenings from 9 p.m. to midnight ET.