Check out our new Take 5 Blog feature! Take 5 is an informal Q&A with some of your favorite country music artists and musicians, WSM air personalities, and just all around interesting people!
This week our Take 5 Q&A is with Joe Limardi, former WSM Program Director. Joe recently left his position at WSM to head back up north to live closer to his family. Upon his departure, Joe left us with these memories and fun tidbits about his time at the Legend, 650 AM WSM.
1. Joe, how long have you been in radio and where did you get your start?
Thirty years ago, I cracked the mic for the first time at my college radio station in Massachusetts.
2. Give us a little overview of the Program Director job that you’ve done here at the station for the past seven years.
It’s been my responsibility to allow Bill, Charlie, Mike, Eddie, and Marcia to continue to do what they do best, entertain our audience while upholding the values and principles of 650 AM WSM. It hasn’t been a job at all, just an honor to work side by side with these pros and watch them embrace the challenge of change, while staying true to their personalities. On the flip side, it was also my job to find the next generation of WSM fan by working with the team to enhance our online and APP listening experience, and by broadening our musical selections to include Americana and Bluegrass in the playlist. That too has been a pleasure watching our listeners explore these new sounds with us and accept them as a compliment to the great classic country music that we’re world famous for.
3. What is your favorite on-air memory from your job here at WSM?
Surviving the flood in May of 2010. I know it sounds odd to say that was a favorite memory, but I guess what made it special was that it brought a tight staff even closer together and it showed just what kind of people we have here at WSM…the kind that didn’t mind rolling up their sleeves for the station and for the listeners that depend on us everyday.
4. What will you miss most about your job here at WSM?
The gratification that I got everyday as the person at the helm of this truly one-of-a-kind radio station and to connect with the thousands of fans around the world.
5. If you could only listen to one country song for the rest of your life, which one would it be and why?
He Stopped Loving Her Today/George Jones. I didn’t know the song when I first arrived here seven years ago, but it became the most poignant song on WSM when the Possum passed. I still get chill bumps after he first 3 notes of the song.