Jerry King has been playing country music on the radio since March of 1965 when he went to work at KBER in San Antonio, after obtaining a first class radio license at Elkins Institute in Dallas. Music was in his blood, Jerry picked up the guitar at a young age and formed a country band while at Harlandale High School in San Antonio (class of 1964). The great Charlie Walker was Jerry’s radio idol, when Charlie worked on KMAC in San Antonio. Jerry admits to wanting to be like Charlie and be on the radio.
His radio career was interrupted for 6 months while he served on active duty in the United States Coast Guard. Upon his return to San Antonio he was given his job back at KBER, where he worked until Thanksgiving of 1966 when he was offered a job, up Interstate 35, at KTON in Belton, Texas.
He took another 6-month break from Belton to work at KBUC in San Antonio during HemisFair ’68. After that it was back to Belton until the summer of 1972 when he was recruited to work at KOPY in Alice, Texas.
Jerry stayed at KOPY until June 1975 when Max Gardner invited him to apply for the overnight position at KKYX. He’s been at KKYX ever since and during that time advanced from overnight DJ to evenings, middays, afternoon drive and the morning show, which he is currently hosting. He also became assistant music director under Max, until 1980, when Max departed the station and Jerry took over the music director’s job.
As music director Jerry often welcomed new artists into the country music world on the radio, one of those being George Strait. The singer from San Marcos and Pearsall, the lead singer of the Ace in the Hole Band, wanted KKYX to be the first to play his first song, Unwound, on the radio in May of 1981. Jerry played the song on KKYX, giving George the thrill of hearing his song on the radio for the first time.
Numerous other artists have come through KKYX over the years to the same reception from Jerry.
Jerry hasn’t spent all of the last 39 years inside the station; he’s been out in South and Central Texas, judging beauty contests, chili contests, parades and the like. He’s also participated in parades and fund-raising events for a multitude of charities.
Retirement isn’t in Jerry’s plans. “I don’t like the ‘R’ word,” he says, intending to keep playing classic country music on the 50,000-watts of KKYX, covering 99,000 square-miles of Texas, for as long as he can.
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