Way, way back in “the day,” Mike played and toured and was band leader for Ace Cannon (Grammy-nominated for the instrumental version of Willie Nelson’s “Blue Eyes Cryin’ in the Rain”). They had been booked to play their latest regional hit on a Memphis early-morning, live (key word – “LIVE”) talk/news show. Apparently, the producers didn’t know that you don’t leave unattended a rock band that’s been up all night, so they seated them in an area adjacent to the weather set to wait their time to lip-sync the new song.
Word of explanation for younger readers: there wasn’t always Doppler radar and 3-D topographical maps to juice-up weather forecasts. At that time, there was a stationary, regional map with magnetic temperature numbers and cute weather symbols affixed thereto. The weather man (yes, it WAS a man in that era) prepared his weather board in advance of show time, and then a curtain was drawn in front of the board just waiting to be opened for his piece of the show.
Except there were these crazy musicians. With nothing else to do and no one watching them. So they went over and peeked behind the weather map curtain. They saw temperature numbers such as 80 in Memphis, 75 in Jonesboro, etc. And they saw an opportunity for mischief. They pulled off numbers, rearranged numbers, and totally destroyed any sensibility to the map. Did I say that the show was LIVE????
So, they did their number. Didn’t even bother to hold the instruments that they actually played, then they lurked on the sidelines for the Big Reveal. Weather segment began. Did I mention that this was live? The weather man dramatically opened the curtains on the weather map and saw that it was a complete disaster. Talk about your global warming! Pro that he was, however, he chuckled, acknowledged the ambush, and marched forward – compensating from memory for the total lack of information on his board.
The guys were doubled up on the sidelines, but this totally cool weather dude just last week celebrated his 30th year on that local station. I guess we know why.