Jim Lago, the host of the long-running morning show on KKTX radio here in Corpus Christi has been named to the Texas Radio Hall of Fame. He'll be inducted at the end of October, and we recently had a chance to sit and talk with him.
Like lots of people in the broadcasting business, he started at a small station in a small town. In his case, it was KLUE 1260 in Longview, Texas. Lago says, "It was a day timer, I did Saturdays and Sundays and shut it off at night." During the week, he worked for an oil company in Kilgore. That lasted until his boss at the oil company wanted to send him on an out of town assignment one weekend. Lago says when he protested and suggested that he go during the week he got an ultimatum. And imitating his old boss in a pretty good east Texas accent, he said, "Well, you're gonna have to decide which one is more important, which one puts your food on your plate." Lago says it wasn't long before he didn't smell like oil anymore.
From there he went to a station in Beaumont, and then on to KILT in Houston, the Big 610. That's where he worked with iconic Program Director Bill Young. and the hugely popular morning team Hudson & Harrigan who also later called themselves Stevens & Pruett. Lago says,"It was a great radio station... it was great." Beaureguard Rodriguez Weaver was there at the time. He went on to become a successful voice actor and film narrator. And so was Jack Mayberry, who went by Jackson O'Connor. Jack is now a successful standup comedian, with more than two dozen appearances on the "Tonight Show".
From Houston, Lago went to Denver, Colorado to doing his own morning show. And when the station was sold and the format was changed to "Oldies", he decided to leave and he ended up driving a taxi cab in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico for almost a year. for about a year. Then it was back to Houston for another stint at KILT.
And he ended up here in Corpus Christi on a whim. He was passing thru when he heard an old friend on the radio and called him on the phone. It wasn't long before he was talked into taking a job at KEYS radio He ended up in a studio across the hall from the morning team on the FM station... newsman Bud Lockhart and a guy named Glen Beck who used to steal all of his material. And yeah, it was that Glen Beck.
Lago says, "We talk, I talked to him not long ago and he did a video introduction for me, for the big event. coming up in October." The big event is his induction into the Texas Radio Hall of Fame , which in part is due to the success of his long-running morning talk shows on KEYS and then KKTX. Lago is pretty modest about that, he says "I get paid to have an opinion about things, and then explain why I have those opinions, and that's about it."
But you can tell he's proud of the recognition, but he's also quick to share the credit with the volunteers who do the show with him. He says, "Capt. Rocco Montesano has been with me for as long as I've been on the air, since '96. Blake followed in '97 or '98, then there was Dave Evans and Dr. Rose, uh Dr. Greg Silverman for awhile.
And he added, "You know when you find somebody that has a good take on things, they're generally an entertaining person. And if they don't have a problem with a bright cylindrical object in their face for a couple of hours, then you've got the makings of a morning show."
And he does "Lago in the Morning" is consistently rated as one of the top five programs in Corpus Christi radio. Jim will be inducted into the Texas Radio Hall of Fame on October 29th, at the Radisson Hotel in Fort Worth, Texas.
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