Bruce Morrow

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Bruce Morrow
Bruce Morrow 2003.jpg
Morrow during 2003
Born
Bruce Meyerowitz

(1935-10-13) October 13, 1935 (age 85) or (1937-10-13) October 13, 1937 (age 83)
New York City, New York, U.S.
OccupationDisk jockey, radio announcer, actor
Years active1959–present
Spouse(s)includes Jodie Berlin (1974— )

Bruce Morrow (born Bruce Meyerowitz on October 13, 1935[1] or October 13, 1937)[2][3] (sources differ) is an American radio performer, known for professional purposes as Cousin Brucie or Cousin Bruce Morrow. In an October 2020 interview, Morrow said he received the moniker 'Cousin' while in the lobby of his mid-town Manhattan WABC studio when an elderly woman once asked him "Cousin, lend me fifty cents to get home" to whom he did give that fifty cents. The name stuck for six decades.[4]

Early life[edit]

Morrow was born in Brooklyn, New York City, New York,[1] the son of Mr. and Mrs. Abe Meyerowitz.[5] Raised in the Sheepshead Bay neighborhood, he attended elementary school at P.S. 206.[1] While attending James Madison High School, he was involved with the All City Radio Workshop at Brooklyn Technical High School.[1] Wanting to pursue a radio career, he spent 10 hours a week working for dramatic educational productions at radio station WNYE-FM.

Morrow enrolled as a student at Brooklyn College but transferred to New York University[6] in the Communications Arts Program. At NYU, he initiated the school's first[citation needed] radio station, WCAG[3] (Communications Arts Group). It was a carrier current station with a limited range and programmed classical music.[citation needed]

Career[edit]

Radio work[edit]

Morrow's first stint in radio was in Bermuda at ZBM-AM, where he was known as "The Hammer".[7]

Morrow began his career in the USA at New York City Top 40 station WINS (AM) in 1959. In 1960, he relocated to Miami, Florida for a stint at WINZ (AM) before returning to New York the next year for the major station WABC (AM 770), another Top 40 station. Morrow's return to New York City came just as rock and roll music was becoming extremely popular among the baby boom demographic, and Morrow found himself on the most powerful radio station on the East Coast at the beginning of the so-called British Invasion. His main competition came from his previous station WINS, which featured "Murray the K," a DJ who claimed an association with the Beatles.

Morrow quickly became a success on WABC's teenager-oriented evening shift for 7:15 p.m. to 10:30 p.m., presenting the diverse musical genres of the time (Motown soul, pop, hard rock, surf music, novelty records), as well as advertisements for youth-oriented sponsors like Thom McAn, local clothing outlets in the New York and New Jersey areas, and events such as concerts and drag-strip races.

Morrow worked for WABC for 13 years and 4,014 broadcasts until August 1974, when he transferred to rival radio station WNBC replacing Wolfman Jack who quit to tour with The Guess Who; after three years there, he quit performance to team with entrepreneur Robert F.X. Sillerman to become the owner of the Sillerman Morrow group of radio stations, which included WALL; WKGL, now WRRV, in Middletown, New York; WJJB, later WCZX, in Poughkeepsie, New York; WHMP in Northampton, Massachusetts; WOCB in West Yarmouth, Massachusetts; WRAN (now dark) New Jersey 1510 in Randolph, New Jersey; and television station WATL Atlanta. The group later purchased WPLR in New Haven, Connecticut.

During 1982, Morrow resumed working as a radio announcer, for New York's WCBS-FM, an oldies station. Initially, he filled in for Jack Spector every third Saturday evening for the Saturday Night Sock Hop program. After Spector's resignation during 1985, Morrow became the main performer for the program and renamed it the Saturday Night Dance Party. The station also added his nationally syndicated show Cruisin' America. During 1986, he began working the Wednesday evening shift, where he hosted The Top 15 Yesterday and Today Countdown. During 1991, the Wednesday show became The Yearbook, emphasizing music from the years between 1955 and 1979.

When the radio program Cruisin' America ended during December 1992, Morrow continued hosting a WCBS radio program named Cruising with the Cuz Monday evenings until the end of 1993. After that program ended, he hosted the Saturday night and Wednesday night programs there until the station's change to an adult hits format named Jack FM on June 3, 2005. Soon thereafter, he signed a multi-year deal to host oldies programming and a weekly talk program for Sirius Satellite Radio, and for 15 years, from 2005 to 2020, hosted programs for Sirius XM satellite radio, on the '60s on 6 channel. Cousin Brucie's Saturday Night Party – Live is broadcast Saturday nights, while Cruisin' with Cousin Brucie is broadcast on Wednesday nights. On Sunday nights, Best of Brucie, a compilation culled from his SiriusXM broadcasts, aired. His crew included at various points former senior producers Colton Murray and Adam Saltzman, and producer Lauren Hornek. On his Wednesday, July 29, 2020, program, he announced he was leaving SiriusXM following that Saturday's broadcast, characterizing it as not a retirement.[8]

Days later, it was announced that Cousin Brucie would be returning to WABC in New York City, where he was previously a DJ from 1961 to 1974, with the otherwise all-talk station airing Cousin Brucie’s Saturday Night Rock & Roll Party weekly, beginning September 5, 2020. The program was described as featuring music from the 1950s and 1960s, and "a good touch" of the 1970s.[9]

Television[edit]

Morrow's voice can be heard in the movies Across the Universe, Gas Pump Girls, and Dirty Dancing; he also had a minor part in the latter, playing a magician who saws Baby (Jennifer Grey) in half. He can be seen making on stage introductory remarks for the 1966 documentary The Beatles at Shea Stadium. He also appeared in the 1978 movie Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band and had a guest appearance for the 1990s science fiction television series Babylon 5, (in "War Without End" (Part 2), playing the first officer of Babylon 4). In Across the Universe the radio station call letters he used were WEAF which were the call letters of 660 in New York before it became WNBC.[10] He also played a television contest announcer in Between Time and Timbuktu, a 1972 National Educational Television production adapted from several short stories by Kurt Vonnegut.

Charity work[edit]

Morrow has worked for the Variety Children's Charity to help fund children who are disadvantaged, physically challenged, sick or needy, and he volunteers with Gatewave Audio Reading Service for people who are blind or visually impaired.[citation needed]

Personal life[edit]

In December 1974, the divorced Morrow married Jodie Berlin, at the time the corporate manager of executive development and internal placements for the department-store chain Alexander's.[5] Morrow has children, including daughter Meredith, from his first marriage.[11]

Honors[edit]

Morrow was inducted into the National Radio Hall of Fame in 1988,[2] and the National Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame in the radio division in 2001.[12] In 2010, he received the Bravery In Radio Award from William Paterson University and its radio station WPSC 88.7 FM, for a track record of "inspirational radio programming and lifelong commitment to the medium of radio".[13] Born in Brooklyn, part of geographical Long Island, he was inducted into the Long Island Music Hall of Fame in 2018.[14]

Books[edit]

  • Cousin Brucie: My Life in Rock 'N' Roll Radio (1987).
  • Doo Wop: The Music, the Times, the Era (published November 1, 2007).
  • Rock & Roll:...And the Beat Goes On (published October 1, 2009) ISBN 0-9823064-3-1.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Barmash, Jerry (November 5, 2012). "Cousin Brucie Recalls His Brooklyn Roots". Adweek. Archived from the original on December 18, 2018. Retrieved July 30, 2020. (subscription required)
  2. ^ a b "Inductees > Bruce Morrow". Chicago, Illinois: Radio Hall of Fame. Archived from the original on January 22, 2020. Retrieved July 30, 2020.
  3. ^ a b Sterling, Christopher H., ed. (2003). Encyclopedia of Radio. Fitzroy Dearborn Publishers / Taylor & Francis. p. 1603. ISBN 9781135456498. Born Bruce Meyerowitz in Brooklyn, New York, 13 October 1937.
  4. ^ Golomb, Robert (October 15, 2020). "How Radio Broadcaster Bruce Morrow Became The Legendary Cousin Brucie". The Published Reporter. Retrieved October 22, 2020.
  5. ^ a b "Richard Kaufman Marries Jean Aberlin > Jodie Berlin Is a Bride". The New York Times. December 27, 1974. p. 39. Retrieved July 30, 2020.
  6. ^ "Brooklyn Jewish Hall of Fame 2019 > Bruce 'Cousin Brucie' Morrow". Brooklyn Jewish Historical Initiative. Archived from the original on July 2, 2020. Retrieved July 30, 2020.
  7. ^ Morrow, Bruce. Cousin Brucie: My Life in Rock 'N' Roll Radio (1987). page ???
  8. ^ Angermiller, Michele Amabile (July 30, 2020). "'Cousin Brucie' to Exit Sirius XM's '60s on 6 Channel After 15 Years on the Air". Variety. Retrieved July 30, 2020.
  9. ^ Jacobs, Julia (August 11, 2020). "Cue Up the Shirelles: Cousin Brucie Is Back at WABC-AM Radio". New York Times. Retrieved August 11, 2020.
  10. ^ Fandango Filmography for Bruce Morrow Archived March 3, 2016, at the Wayback Machine. Fandango.com (1935-10-13). Retrieved on 2016-05-15.
  11. ^ Hazlewood, Lynn (n.d.). "At Home with Bruce and Jodie Morrow". Hudson Valley. Today Media. Archived from the original on July 30, 2020. Retrieved July 20, 2020.
  12. ^ "NAB Broadcasting Hall of Fame Radio Inductees". National Association of Broadcasters. Archived from the original on 2008-11-09. Retrieved 2008-05-03.
  13. ^ "The Bravery in Radio Award: Bruce Morrow, 2010 Recipient". William Paterson University. n.d. Retrieved January 18, 2020.
  14. ^ "'Cousin' Brucie Morrow, Deejay: 2018". Long Island Music Hall of Fame . Retrieved July 30, 2020.

External links[edit]