5 Questions with...97.1 FM The Drive's Bob Stroud

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5 Questions with...97.1 FM The Drive's Bob Stroud

By Jeff Nuich
CSN Chicago Senior Director of CommunicationsCSNChicago.com Contributor

December 9, 2009

Want to know more about your favorite Chicago media celebrities? CSNChicago.com has your fix as we put the citys most popular personalities on the spot with a new weekly feature entitled 5 Questions with...

Every Wednesday exclusively on CSNChicago.com, its our turn to grill the local media and other local VIPs with five random sports and non-sports related questions that will definitely be of interest to old and new fans alike.

This weeka true pioneer in Chicagos storied rock n roll radio historyhes been a fixture on the local airwaves for thirty years and his Rock N Roll Roots program continues to entertain both old and new listeners to this dayhe can be heard weekdays from 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM on WDRV 97.1 FM The Drivehere are 5 Questions withBOB STROUD!

BIO: Born in Kalamazoo, MI, Bob Stroud's first radio gig in Chicago was with WMET in 1979. Since then he has truly become a Chicago radio icon, and considered to be the most respected voice of rock & roll in the city.

An acknowledged music junkie, Stroud's non-radio musical past includes playing his grandmother's Perry Como 78's on her Victrola in 1957; buying his first four 45's in 1962; getting his first transistor radio in 1963; buying "Meet the Beatles" in 1964; and fronting an 11-piece rock and R&B band called Rockestra from 1990 2000. In late 2003 Bob was contacted by Cryan' Shames percussionist, Jim Pilster, aka, J.C. Hooke, and invited to become the new lead singer of this legendary Chicago band. When Bob bought his first Cryan' Shames record at 15, he never dreamed he'd join the band at 51.

His understated presentation combined with WDRV's focus on the music has resulted in WDRV being a top ranked station during midday's since the day WDRV launched. In fact, it was Bob's voice that introduced Chicagoan's to 97.1 FM The Drive on April 2, 2001, the day it launched.

In 1980, Stroud created the popular Rock & Roll Roots show. "Roots", as it is commonly referred to, spotlights different artists and groups from 1964 to the early 70's, and has become a radio staple for classic rock fans. It airs on WDRV-FM every Sunday from 7a-10a.

1) CSNChicago.com: Bob, calling you a rock n roll historian would be an understatement to say the least and your Rock N Roll Roots show (Sundays from 7:00-10:00 AM on WDRV) has been a Chicago institution for years. What is it about music from the 60s and 70s that has such a grip on our culture to this day?

Stroud: I don't know that it does, or if it's just gripping to those of us who lived through it in the first place. If you look at ratings, for example, The Drive doesn't have an overwhelming number of 18 to 34 year old listeners. Yet 45 to 64 year old listeners flock to the station. There are some elements of the era that do transcend the ages, like The Beatles. They'll never go out of style, they'll never go out of fashion because, as we like to say at The Drive, their music is timeless. Back to your original question, the music of those decades continues to grip the population who lived it because it's legitimately good music and it carries those oh so important memories that mean as much to us as the music does. Every generation will experience this phenomenon with the music they grew up loving.

2) CSNChicago.com: It was recently announced that The Who will be performing live at halftime of the Super Bowl in February. The bands legendary lead singer Roger Daltrey has been on a solo tour of late to keep his voice in tact for The Whos next project, but its also been reported that Daltrey has struggled a bit on his tour and that his brilliant voice is no where near what it once was. Do you think both he and partner Pete Townshend may be a bit concerned that Daltreys voice come Super Bowl Sunday may become an issue in their performance? Were talking the Super Bowl here with millions of old andpotentially new fans watching.

Stroud: Being a singer of some note myself, I can tell you first hand that vocal chords are a very temperamental instrument. They've got to be babied, coddled and taken care of as much, if not more than any other muscle in your system. It's got to be tough for Daltrey after singing with such intensity for this side of 50 years to come close to sounding like he did in his classic era. Nobody sounds exactly like they did in their 20's. That said, the truly great ones always rise to the occasion and I've got to believe that, one way or another, Daltrey will find a way to pull it off.

3) CSNChicago.com: Youve no doubt been to hundreds and hundreds of concerts in your lifetime. Certainly not an easy question here, but tell us the best concert you have ever seen?

Stroud: Impossibly tough question as I can't begin to remember all the concerts I've seen. Seems like I lived at the Park West in the '80's. In no particular order, here are a few that standout in my memory:

- Paul McCartney at the United Center circa '02: Great staging, spot on sound, and how often are you in the same room with true legends?

- My first Springsteen concert, Orlando, FL circa '77: Wow! I was just so pumped and he just so delivered!

- Roy Orbison at the Riviera circa '88: Huge fan and those songs just kill me. Watching the audience surge towards the stage at the end of every operatic finish and then have Orbison standing there with one hand on his hip soaking in the adulation will forever be imprinted in my mind.

- Raspberries at House of Blues circa '07: Never saw them first time around, but bought all their records. They sounded so good on this reunion tour it was sick. Absolutely sardine-packed house sweating to every last power-pop nugget.

- First Elvis Costello tour of the states with Nick Lowe and Mink Deville in Tampa, FL. circa '78: I was a ravenous fan of all three acts and to see them all on the same bill was a "died and gone to heaven" experience.

4) CSNChicago.com: There have been many debates over the years on whats the best band to ever come out of our fine city. Bands like Cheap Trick, Styx and, of course, Chicago immediately comes to mind. Who would be your personal pick?
Stroud: I have trouble with "best" and "favorite." "Best" is so subjective, so I've got to go with "favorite. I have many and being as old school as I am, I have to start with the 60's era bands that came out of Chicago. As a kid, I bought anything that came out of Chicago...Cryan' Shames, Buckinghams, Ides of March, New Colony Six, Shadows of Knight, American Breed, Mauds, Riddles, Flock, etc. Couldn't get enough of it. I thought the first couple of Chicago albums were revelatory. Some really ingenious stuff. And even though they were miles west of here, I'm a huge fan of Cheap Trick as well.

5) CSNChicago.com: Your popularity, along with The Drives overall popularity, continues to bring in big audiences to the station 247. Do you think thats a factor of a rising older demographic that is attracted to the music of their generation or, is it simply that the music stands the test of time no matter how young or old you may be?

Stroud: Well as I stated earlier, I think our popularity is mainly with the fans that lived the music the first time around. That said, we do receive a good percentage of e-mail from listeners who are teens and 20-somethings who are into the music because they recognize there is a level of musicianship and songwriting that doesn't exist in a lot of today's efforts. That and the fact that they were raised on it because of their parents can also certainly be a factor. And again, there is an element to much of it that does and will stand the test of time.

Weather it's the Beatles or Stones, Motown or Styx, a lot of this will never fade away.

BONUS QUESTIONCSNChicago.com: What is else going on Bob, anything you would like to promote? CSNChicago.com readers want to hear about it

Stroud: I'm an animal lover. I give regularly to PAWS (www.paws.org), the no-kill shelter, and I encourage others to look into giving to the organization of their choice. Animals are so often the thread that holds our lives together. Think of them this holiday season when you've got a few extra bucks laying around.

Stroud LINKS:

WDRV 97.1 FM The DriveBob Stroud page

WDRV 97.1 FM The DriveRock N Roll Roots page

Bobs Rock n Roll Roots blog

Bobs Ten at 10 link on WDRV.com

Bobs One 45 at 1:45 link on WDRV.com

Jose Quintana gets the Opening Day start for White Sox

Jose Quintana gets the Opening Day start for White Sox

 

GLENDALE, Ariz. — Jose Quintana has been named the Opening Day starter — for the White Sox.

While many are surprised he still hasn't been traded, few should be shocked by the news manager Rick Renteria delivered on Friday, when he announced Quintana would pitch the April 3 opener.

With Chris Sale gone to Boston, Quintana, a first-time All-Star in 2016, has been the odds-on favorite to take over as the team's ace. The only question seemed to be whether or not he'd still be in a White Sox uniform when the season began. But the club made it clear Friday that Quintana is their guy and he'll face the Detroit Tigers in the first game of 2017. The only one who seemed a little taken aback about the news is Quintana.

"I was surprised," Quintana said. "I knew I may get the ball for that day, but they didn't say nothing, so you didn't know. I just kept going and doing my workouts and all my stuff. I'm really, really happy with this opportunity. It's huge for me. I can't wait for that day to come.

"I'm excited to have this opportunity. It's a huge honor for me to have the ball for Opening Day the first time in my life. And I think it's a once-in-a-life opportunity."

Asked about the announcement earlier in the week, Renteria said he needed more time. Many speculated that it meant the White Sox were continuing to listen to offers for Quintana, who has drawn constant interest since the team began its rebuild in December.

[WHITE SOX TICKETS: Get your seats right here]

Quintana, who went 13-12 with a 3.20 ERA and 181 strikeouts in 208 innings last season, has looked fantastic all spring. Pitching in front of more than a dozen scouts on Thursday, Quintana made his first Cactus League appearance in a month and allowed two hits over seven scoreless innings. The left-hander also put on a brilliant performance for Colombia in the World Baseball Classic on March 10 as he retired the first 17 Team USA hitters he faced before allowing a hit.

"He's very happy about it," Renteria said. "He has obviously earned it.

"I don't know if he was surprised as much as he was elated and proud to be given the opportunity to be the Opening Day starter. It's a privilege."

Quintana's resume of consistency made him a clear-cut choice for the nod. He heads into 2017 having pitched at least 200 innings in each of the past four seasons. In that span, he's produced a 3.32 ERA and 18.1 Wins Above Replacement, according to fangraphs.com. That figure represents the seventh-highest WAR total among all big league pitchers in that span.

Even though he's viewed as the staff ace, Quintana — who potentially has four years and $36.85 million left on his current contract — said he was surprised by the news because the club hadn't yet informed him of the honor.

"It means a lot for me, especially after last year when you make the All-Star team and this year the opportunity to play in the WBC and now you have the opportunity to pitch on Opening Day," Quintana said. "That's a lot of things happening for me now and I'm happy. And really blessed. You just try to do all my things every time.

"Maybe they don't know what it means for me, but it's a big thing."

2017 NFL Draft Profile: Miami QB Brad Kaaya

2017 NFL Draft Profile: Miami QB Brad Kaaya

As part of our coverage leading up to the 2017 NFL Draft we will provide profiles of more than 100 prospects, including a scouting report and video interviews with each player.

Brad Kaaya, QB, Miami

6'4" | 214 lbs.

2016 stats:

3,532 YDS, 62.0 CMP%, 27 TD, 7 INT, 150.3 QBR

Projection:

Third/Fourth round

Scouting Report:

"Groomed to be a quarterback from an early age, Kaaya flashes the mechanics and intelligence of a player who has spent hours in quarterback camps. However, he can be too mechanical and thinks too much rather than just flowing and responding to what the field offers him. Kaaya could have used another year of college, but he has the tools and intangibles to become an NFL starter. While he can work around his average arm strength, he must improve his accuracy and anticipation if he is to make a mark in the NFL." — Lance Zierlein, NFL.com

Video analysis provided by Rotoworld and NBC Sports NFL Draft expert Josh Norris.

Click here for more NFL Draft Profiles