You know you’re a monster talent when creative folks come out of the woodwork from seemingly everywhere to pay tribute. In so many ways, Jack Armstrong, whose real name is John Larsh, was one of the pioneering voices in the history of Top 40 radio. In a career that spanned over 50 years on air at dozens of stations, many of them legendary, Armstrong paved the way for other fast talking on air lunatics (we say that in a complimentary way) to captivate massive audiences on both coasts, and the hinterlands in between. From legendary status at WKBW Buffalo, to KFI in Los Angeles and KKHR Los Angeles to morning drive at an Oldies station back home in North Carolina concurrent with a voicetracked appearance on the short lived KB Klassic format at WWKB Buffalo, Armstrong set the standard for quick witted one liners. Fact is, Armstrong graced so many stations from Boston’s WMEX to little stations in the midwest among his large market appearances, it could almost be argued that he worked at more stations in more markets than Joey Reynolds – a jock who once quipped “I’ve worked at so many radio stations they call me the Voice of America”.
This tribute, by our friendliest and certainly most generous contributor, Matt Seinberg over at Big Apple Airchecks, is one of the best, most insightful and respectful I’ve heard anywhere. It deserves airplay, and since no radio stations seem to have any interest, we proudly present this tribute to one of the truely great radio legends, Jack Armstrong!
Don’t be ashamed to shed a tear – this one’s that good.
Steve West is a 41 year veteran of broadcasting. His air work as a Jock and News Anchor includes six radio markets and over two-dozen radio stations. Steve is the founder of Airchexx.com and Hitoldies.net - All the BIG Hits!