Thanks to YouTub viewer joenwc for some very sad but timely information. He commented on this YouTube video that the actor Robert Carr III had died this week. Mr. Carr voiced the wildly popular Atlanta radio icon 'Willis the Guard.' Most people I knew listened to 94Q in the mornings on the way to school; in Fayette County most kids either rode the bus (where 94Q could also be heard) or were driven by their parents, only a very few of us walked. By this time, late '70s, the 94Q morning format featured Gary McKee very heavily, as well as his sidekicks Willis and Yetta Levitt. I must say I leaned toward Yetta Levitt at that time, though I mostly listened to 96Rocks' laid back Bobby Harper and the greatest local sports commentator of all time, Jim Huber. A southern precursor to NPR's Frank DeFord, Jim gave me what knowledge of sports I have, outside of my dissociative disorder producing foray into football cheerleading, and my hours of (contentedly) watching cousin's baseball games. Jim Huber gave the highlights, and the lowlights of the players, the managers, and the owners, and the fans of the Hawks, the Braves, the Flames, and the :-( Falcons. He did so in a conversational tone that conveyed his love of games, and his occasional disgust with foolish or greedy folks that might stand in the way of a fan's enjoyment. Huber himself was clearly a fan, and though an experienced journalist, he neither philosophized nor talked down to the listener, whom he seemed clearly to expect to see at the next game. Where is he now? Dang! Right here- he's evidently been winning well deserved awards for writing- coinciding with the time I was watching less and less tv.-
Willis was country when, well there wasn't a time on the southside that I can remember that country wasn't cool, but as Gary McKee is quoted in this ajc feature obituary, Robert Carr's character Willis was Larry the Cable Guy 30 years ago. The jester can always say things that the king cannot, and 1970s Atlanta was certainly in need of a good spoofing. What got my sox was the amazing revelation that Mr Carr was the father of Third Day's David Carr. My family have been huge Third Day fans since we heard them in the late '90s. What is interesting is that i've always considered them rock descendants of - The Allman Brothers - the through 'Eat a Peach' version. If you've never heard Third Day- listen through the above song- I liked the slovak (?) lyrics!- from their 2000 release 'Offerings.' Listen to Ramblin' Road Trip to hear Gary McKee give away the new Allman Brothers' album, 'Brothers and Sisters'! Go to Airchexx for more 'Willis the Guard.' May God continue to bless Mr Carr's family.