INVISIBLE AIRWAVES Issue #027 - Page 26

footing again, with the freedom that you had as well. The FCC crackdowns weren't happening yet and you could still fairly edgy content.

ES: Luckily the FCC crack down wouldn't come for a number of years later, but it was a great time. Top 40 had drifted because Grunge was so big and kind of mainstream at that point. When it shifted and went back the other way, it was, I think Top 40 stations felt liberated to spread their wings again and incorporate what Top 40 had always been famous for by taking the biggest songs in all formats. It felt like a very free rebirth of the format.

MP: How did the move to D.C. come about?

ES: I always wanted to see if I could do a show on my own. There was never a falling out with Elvis. There was never a falling out with Z100. I just knew that I wanted to go see if I could do my own show. I wanted to do things that weren't, and I don't mean for this to sound disrespectful at all, but I didn't want to do things that were all under the trappings of having benchmarks and doing morning zoo type bits. I loved all that stuff. That's what I grew up on, but it got to a point about three years or so into the show with Elvis where I was talking to Tom [Poleman] and just being honest with him about this is what I want to go do. I need to go do

this. Tom was great. From the first time that we had that conversation until D.C. happened, it was probably about nine months and the company was good enough to look around and find a place where we could take a chance on something like I wanted to do. DC101 was very alluring because they had big personalities before I got there.

our general manager, John Fullam, was overseeing the market. It certainly made the transition much easier when the two guys that were helping you move were helping you move to a market where they were in charge. I felt like I had a fair chance of going in because the audience was used to a personality driven morning show.

MP: When you made that transition, did you become more edgy? What was the difference in doing the Z show versus what you started doing on DC101? ES: It came down to more of my natural sensibilities and what I wanted to do. Was it edgier than Z? Yes, of course. Was it different from Z? Yes. We weren't doing bits and it was all talk. I was playing a little bit of music back then, but it was a chance to really find content that fit my natural curiosities and tendencies and then being able to talk about it. We were going to lean more edgy than they were in Top 40.