Larry Glick

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Larry Glick
Born 1922
Massachusetts, USA
Died 26 March 2009 aged 87
Boca Raton Community Hospital, Boca Raton, Florida
Cause of death
Complications from open-heart surgery
Other names "Commander" Glick; "Streeter" Glick
Education Roxbury Memorial High School, Roxbury, MA
Alma mater Emerson College, Boston
Occupation Radio announcer
Years active 40+
Known for Boston-based radio talk show; "The Story Behind the Story"
Notable work(s) Comedy Album "Larry Glick? Let Me Check."
Awards Massachusetts Broadcasters Hall of Fame, 2008

Larry Glick (1922–2009) [1] was an American talk radio host, based in Boston, Massachusetts, whose long-running show on WBZ and later WHDH became a New England institution in the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s.

Prior to ending its run on WHDH in 1992, Larry's show went out first over WMEX in 1965. By 1967, he had been hired by WBZ, where he would spend the next 20 years.[2] WBZ Radio is a powerful 50,000-watt Boston station that blanketed the six New England states and reached well beyond, from the Maritime provinces of Canada down through the Carolinas in the South and as far west as the rockies. Larry's "Glicknicks", third-shift workers and insomniacs throughout much of the eastern seaboard and midwest, took comfort when Larry's unique brand of talk radio came on at midnight. For six hours, Larry's affable and charismatic voice enfolded a mix of lighthearted chat, sassy sound effects, obscure and funny musical numbers, and lots of generally wacky calls from listeners.

A typical show might feature a sometimes serious guest, an exchange of repartee with his hapless (and usually less witty) engineer (Kenny "Muck" Meyer) at the station, and free-ranging free associations on current events and life. Some callers became institutions like Larry: Arnold Tarbox, the dry and droll Maine fisherman; Charlie DiGiovanni, a wisecracking Boston cabdriver; the Champagne Lady; Boston newspaper legend, Kenny "The Night Owl" Mayer; and a number of others. A call from some of these regulars could seem like a visit from an old friend.

Certainly Larry was an old friend to most of his fiercely loyal audience. He did not disappoint. A critical or mock-critical caller would hear “Take that!” followed by Larry's cue of a series of rifle-shots on tape. A sentimental moment might prompt playing of one of Larry's favorite irreverent love ballads, such as "Cry of the Wild Goose" by Frankie Laine, or “When The Ice Worm Nests Again” on YouTube (probably performed by Canada's Alan Mills). Boston pride got trumpeted via Bennie Drohan's “Southie Is My Home Town” [1], and infamous Boston bibulousness was regularly lampooned with a traditional beery ballad to Lydia Pinkham (purveyor of a legal forty-proof patent medicine during Prohibition), acclaiming her “the savior of the human race”. His novelty "Glick University" T-shirts, like the "WMEX Good Guys" shirts before them, became collectors' items for his fans. The shirts were awarded as contest prizes or to guests Larry deemed a particularly "Good Guy".

Those who've never heard Larry will have difficulty understanding his magic, since his bighearted, zany persona does not translate into print. But those who've heard Click and Clack on Car Talk would readily recognize the amiable, boisterous and somewhat anarchic style he pioneered.

Likewise, anyone would understand the appeal of a talk-show host who loved all his listeners. Larry gave everyone a shot (sometimes several), and did his best to draw out even the most plodding callers. Every one of them was given a chance to shine and to make a contribution to the “family".

After his retirement from the air and as late as 2007, Larry was the Ambassador of Good Will for the Legal Seafood Restaurant in the Boca Raton (Florida) Mall. In September 2008, he traveled back to Dedham, Massachusetts for his induction into the Massachusetts Broadcasters Hall of Fame[3] at Massasoit Community College. His acceptance speech "brought the house down".[4]

Outside of his broadcasting career, Larry pursued pilot training and was a founding partner in a commercial hypnotherapy business [5] in Brookline, Massachusetts, to help people quit smoking and with weight loss.

More than a couple of Larry's on-air lines have become standards: He would say, after the question "How you doing?", "Wait a minute... let me check" (whistles) (pause) "Fine!" When a caller was put on the air and didn't respond, Larry's line would be "going once... going twice... arrivaderci!".

Larry died on March 26, 2009 following 10 hours of open-heart surgery, when complications arose and the doctors were unable to revive him. In Boston, his obituary ran March 28, 2009 in the Boston Globe.

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References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.boston.com/ae/tv/articles/2009/03/28/larry_glick_hub_radio_voice_long_a_beacon_for_nightowls/
  2. ^ http://www.fybush.com/NERW/2009/090330/nerw.html
  3. ^ http://www.boston.com/news/local/breaking_news/2009/03/larry_glick_rad.html
  4. ^ http://www.boston.com/ae/tv/articles/2009/03/28/larry_glick_hub_radio_voice_long_a_beacon_for_nightowls/
  5. ^ http://www.boston.com/news/local/breaking_news/2009/03/larry_glick_rad.html