UPDATE 4/22/2014 I love how this happened and the ripples it caused in my life. Now that I had some momentum with the program I was constantly looking for sources for news and guests. I had a collection of elaborate saved Google searches that helped me look for paranormal news that did not overlap with other things. (It was weird how many paranormal searches would collide with sports stories.)
In that news I found a story about a ghost investigation group who had arranged a cleanup day for a historic cemetery in Beaumont, Texas. Most of my exposure to “ghost hunters” was from television and I was really pleased to see a group who was showing such respect for the dead. I contacted Don and he was my first Ghost Group Guest. Of course, that wasn’t the end of the story… but I’ll save some of that for later. At this point neither one of us know what’s ahead.
Don and I are still in touch, by the way. He’s a good guy.
UPDATE: 4/14/2014 This was my first conversation with author, Jeff Danelek, about his book”The Case For Ghosts.” I bought his book and found it very interesting. He appealed to a reasonable explanation why ghosts made sense.
Jeff would appear on the show several more times and I always looked forward to his intelligent conversation. He still writes and has an active web site called Our Curious World.
This third episode of The Shadow Hour connected me with cryptozoologist, Ken Gerhard, from San Antonio. It was also the first time that I used Glassy Shadows by Adam Certamen Bownik as the theme song. It broadcast much better than the grungy piece I used before and became a mental doorway through which I would pass as each broadcast began. No matter how harried I was feeling when I began that music everything would settle into place. It was amazing. If I started the show up again I would definitely still use it. I may even use it for some of my live paranormal programs
Of course, Ken Gerhard is an amazing fellow. He is deeply curious about animal mysteries and experienced with going out into the wild and hunting for them. It was a fun interview.
UPDATE: 4/10/2014 When I began doing The Shadow Hour I was inspired by Art Bell and Coast to Coast AM. I really didn’t have a clear idea of how I was going to get guests. I didn’t have people. I wasn’t a name. I was just some dude with some passion and curiosity.
So, I started poking around in different directions for guests. I crafted a carefully worded email and sent it to a few people. For some reason I had put Ed Grimsley on that list. I had heard him in the past on Coast to Coast AM as he described how he observed UFOs through his high-end night vision googles. It was a long shot, but I figured I should get used to rejection now.
He calls. He calls the next day. He is interested in being on the show. My mind races. I’ve barely got one show under my belt at this point. I need to get better. I suggest that we book him a few weeks out, but he wants to get on as soon as he can to announce a project. So, my very second guest on The Shadow Hour was someone I had first heard on Coast to Coast AM… simply because I asked. This would not be the last time I shared guests with that iconic late-night radio show and I repeatedly heard that they enjoyed interviewing with me.
This was also the first mysterious “did not record correctly” incident. This would happen from time to time. I would do the show but something happened on the Blogtalk Radio end and the show did not properly record. At the time I did not have a strategy for doing my own recordings. I do now. So, this is a partial episode.
I’m still clunky and clumsy with my weird news… but Ed is fun. Enjoy what we have.
UPDATE: 4/8/2014 On my recent interview with Joe Diamond on WLIP’s Unreal Radio we talked about my own time as a paranormal radio host with The Shadow Hour. I began this program in 2009 and did it as faithfully as I could for several years. It was a great experience and I do miss it.
Why did I stop? Honestly it was just difficult to keep it going by myself. The on-air time is only a portion of what is involved in putting together a program like that. I have to court and book the guests. I have to find interesting and weird news to share with people. I have to pre-interview guests, look into their information to know what we’re talking about. There were several hours each week devoted to making the show go. I enjoyed it, but it was overwhelming and costing me money rather than making me money. So… I eventually had to flip the switch and economize on the money and the time. It was not a fun thing to do. Like I said…I miss it.
However, on April 29, 2009 I was entering into a whole new adventure. BlogTalk Radio was providing free Internet broadcasting with call-in capabilities. I was going to be able to give this whole thing a shot with no more investment than the time and energy. This was my first try.
The guest was Steve Busti, owner of the Museum of the Weird in Austin, Texas. My own performance was a little rough. I made a poor choice in the theme song. It was edgy, but did not translate well across the phone system. Also, my approach to handling the weird news was stilted. I basically treated myself like a news reader and wrote copy based on the items I’d selected. I wouldn’t find out for a while that I could just riff on them. Thanks to the friends who helped point this out. I got better!