Radio royalty Steve King and Johnnie Putman as you’ve never heard them before, all beginning with how they met one another and fell in love on this Steve Dales Other World Podcast. Steve explains that he fell in love with Johnnie’s voice before he met her face to face just like a radio dude. But then those “red shorts and the white top,” he says, mattered too.
It’s that ability to talk honestly and openly with their audience, not to talk at their audience, has endeared them to WGN listeners for 31 years – not to mention all those years they did other things at various radio stations before WGN.
Steve King and Johnnie Putman had a very personal relationship with their pal, Les Paul, and wrote the book “A Little More Les.”
He was a pioneer in the development of the electronic guitar, and even invented many tools radio stations use every daily, and also recording artists, such as multi-track recording.
Simply put, Steve and Johnnie became pals with a genius.
And boy could he play – and you’ll hear some of that, even harkening back to Les Paul and his wife Mary Ford. On “How High the Moon,” Steve pointed out a particular guitar solo – which you’ll hear – that was the precursor to rock ‘n roll.
That first interview with Les was only with Steve….and sadly, the timing of that interview was bittersweet. Steve reveals the story on air for the first time. If it sounds like Steve was choked up – it’s because he was.
“He worried abut us,” said Johnnie….it was kind of like he became Steve and Johnnie’s father figure.
Heart problems, crippling arthritis and a stiff elbow, and he kept going….He actually couldn’t move his arm out straight. The story is amazing – how he had the doctors set his arm so he could continue playing guitar. Steve and Johnnie say Les Paul was an incredibly inspiring person, who never ever complained.
Steve and Johnnie share Les Paul backstage stories, about folks ranging from Jeff Beck to Charlie Daniels to Bing Crosby.