Christopher Cross, who rocketed to pop success in the early '80s, is making a comeback and will perform in Salt Lake City during a special concert at 7 p.m. June 3 in conjunction with Salt Lake Classic events at Franklin Quest Field.
Cross recently visited radio station KSFI (alias "FM-100"), a Classic sponsor, in advance of the race, entertaining almost two dozen station employees with a candid interview and musical performances for 45 minutes. He seemed like an ordinary guy - until he picked up his guitar and again revealed his songwriting and singing abilities.Interestingly, Cross' latest album is titled "Windows," and his private KSFI performance took place in a small room with a large window overlooking Temple Square from a seventh-story office at 57 W. South Temple.
"It's a real window into my recovery," Cross said of the album.
Cross, who lives in Santa Barbara, Calif., is working his way back to the limelight after virtually disappearing following his successes in the early 1980s.
His song "Ride Like the Wind" hit No. 2 and was shortly followed by two No. 1 smashes, "Sailing" and "The Best That You Can Do," the theme from the movie "Arthur." His first album garnered five Grammys in 1981.
Cross, now 43, said some of his subsequent songs, such as "All Right," didn't do as well as those first hits, although "Think of Laura," popularized on TV's "General Hospital," made the top 10. In part he thinks the evaporation of his hitmaking success was in part a result of a lack of good marketing.
But the instant celebrity, he said, didn't affect him much. He never got caught up in the fame.
"The money is nice to create comfort for my family," he said. Otherwise, the only other thing he liked about his fame was the opportunity to meet and work with other artists.
He doesn't particuarly enjoy talking about himself, either.
"I don't like having my music played around me. I'm shy," he said as he fielded questions from KSFI DJs.
He said he doesn't sit down and try to write songs. That approach doesn't work for him.
"Something usually just pops out," he said. "The best songs are the ones that just sort of happen."
When asked if he'd switch radio stations in his car if one of his songs came on, Cross said he doesn't have to worry much about that in Santa Barbara.
"I don't have much radio to listen to where I live," he said, explaining there's not a good adult contemporary station there.
Today he likes being with family and friends - and friends, he said, are those who let him be himself.
Cross said even Madonna has been very nice to him, even if it's simply out of some sort of professional courtesy.
He said this is a difficult time for him because some of his friends have recently died of cancer and other diseases. Talking about these departed friends brought out a few emotions as he talked - a sensitivity that has probably had an effect on his song-writing as well.
- KFAM (AM-700) - Howard Bogarte, 77, is still the main personality on this easy-listening music station. He does the 6 a.m. to 2 p.m. shift, perhaps the longest on-air shift in the area.
Bogarte is also the state's radio veteran, with 58 years of broadcasting experience. He started his radio career in Dallas back in 1937 and has worked worked for KSL, KTVX and KDYL-TV in the Salt Lake area.
Borgarte said he's not in any hurry to retire and will just keeping going along with his radio work as usual.
- KSRR (alias "K-Star," AM-1400) has a new program, "Patrick Henry Speaks," airing Wednesday evenings from 9 to 10.
Patrick Henry Hansen, the show's host, tackles current political and social issues using the principles of the Founding Fathers and his own wit as a guide.
- RADIO LEGEND DIES - Herb Jepko, 64, Salt Lake City, died March 31 of liver failure. The broadcaster had previously worked at KSL, where he handled the "Crossroads" program; KDYL and KMGR-AM.
Jepko started his call-in "Nitecap" radio show at KSL. From 1964 to 1978, the program was syndicated, with 14 affiliate stations. Jepko retired briefly after working at KDYL but resumed his "Nitecap" show for a few years on KMGR.
Jepko's broadcasting style included his own special blend of music, information and conversation. He excelled at handling the overnight radio shift - midnight to 5 a.m. - a time slot rarely sought after by DJs.
- KCNR - Martin Davies, KCNR's afternoon talk show host, has compiled a running list of goods and services that have been promoted in relation to the O.J. Simpson trial. His list includes 88 businesses and organizations. Sister station KAPN (AM-860) airs the trial live each weekday.
- KTKK - "Religion on the Line" for Sunday, April 7 (8-10 p.m.) will feature guest Wendell Ashton, former publisher of the Deseret News, discussing the life and work of LDS Church President Gordon B. Hinckley. Ashton was a missionary companion of President Hinckley in England during the 1930s.
- KUER (FM-90.1) will present the second season of National Public Radio's "Jazz From Lincoln Center" beginning at 9 p.m. April 13 and airing each Thursday.
- RADIO HAPPENINGS - April Fool's Day missed weekday morning day teams this year by falling on a Saturday, but at least two DJs - "Jon and Dan" on KLZX - didn't let that bother them. They used Friday as April Fool's Day anyway. They kept calling their station "K-Dingo" and referred to themselves as "Chet and Gig." On Monday, "Jon and Dan" went on strike and were out in front of the studios demanding more listeners and better pay, among other things. Darby and another DJ replaced them on the air. . .
"Mick and Allen" on KBER gave away tickets to the Hansen Planetarium Monday. The DJs also did a live broadcast last Friday from the new Ground Zero Shopping Center . . . "The Wakeup Club" on KVRI awarded "Goofy" movie tickets to listeners this week and on Tuesday quizzed them on the most popular street name in the United States. The station will help sponsor the April 8 multiple sclerosis benefit walk in Sugarhouse Park . . . Tom Barberi on KALL discussed transportation issues, light rail and I-15 on Monday. Tuesday he talked about the high salaries baseball players command and the baseball strike . . . Welfare reform and its possible side effects on children and the poor were examined by Rogue Matthews and his listeners on KCNR Monday. On Tuesday, he discussed the high salaries in some so-called charitable organizations . . .
"Gary and Scotty" on KKAT gave away tickets to the Collin Raye concert this week. The DJs had Shaquille O'Neal as a guest in their studio last Friday . . . "Cano and McCormick" on KUTQ had a top 10 list on LDS Church changes at last weekend's General Conference. The DJs also celebrate listener birthdays each weekday morning about 7:30 . . . Len Allen and Arnie Wheeler on KLO are giving away an income tax relief cash award each Wednesday and Thursday morning through April 15 . . .
"Fisher, Todd and Fraser" on KISN-FM were part of a celebrity bash to raise funds for breast cancer awareness in Salt Lake City on Tuesday. A prize for the bash was a chance to be on their morning show . . . "Country Joe" on KSOP and Dan Pope, KTVX weatherman, are hyping their Disneyland contest for the next several weeks. Pope gives listeners the temperature at Disneyland each evening on his weathercast and listeners must use that figure to qualify for the vacation drawings. KSOP is also giving away rare Disney cards to lucky listeners . . .
KBZN will help sponsor the Country Side Bike Classic June 10-11. Register at any First Security Bank . . . KSFI will sponsor a "Safe at Home" baseball clinic on Saturday, April 15, at Franklin Quest Field. Tickets cost $25 and are available through Smith'sTix . . . "Kerry and Bill" on KXRK have decided the "alternative" music label applied to the station's format is too vague, and they are going to bury the word - literally - in a casket at a cemetery next month. The DJs asked listeners Tuesday how they goofed off at work and still appeared to be working. Kerry Jackson will appear at the Hi Fi Shop in Ogden Friday, April 7, from 4-7 p.m. in another special event.