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Bock is back on the radio -- as KOSY's morning host

Tom Bock might well have the most recognized male voice in Utah.

He's the new morning host (5-9 a.m, weekdays) on KOSY (FM-106.9, 107.9) and seems to be everywhere these days because of his free-lance voice work.Bock is the longtime voice in ads for Fox Ch. 13, RC Willey stores, Quick Loan and some other companies.

Despite these advertising jobs, "Being on the radio is what I love," he said.

He also has a keen understanding of the radio industry and explains its transitory nature -- where 18 months at a station can usually make you a veteran -- this way:

Working as a radio personality is like playing a game of musical chairs at a birthday party. When the music stops, someone is always left standing.

Indeed, Bock has been the one left standing more than once. He lost his afternoon host job at KSL in the late 1980s because of some staff downsizing. He had started there in 1973.

His radio career began on weekends at Murray's KMUR in 1963 when he was only 15. He said he had to "exaggerate" his age to get that first radio job.

After KSL, he found work at KLCY, later at "Magic 107.5" (eventually nicknamed "The Mix") and finally at KBZN ("The Breeze"), where he worked as morning host for 2 1/2 years.

At KBZN last fall, he was told the station needed a change of direction and he ending up taking an amicable departure.

During his more than seven months of non-radio station work, he said he was able to sharpen his writing skills and do some infomercials. He also worked on Saturdays for a time at KUMT ("The Mountain"), the forerunner to KOSY.

Still, he didn't take it easy and said he "trained" for another morning radio job by continuing to get up at 5:15 a.m. during that unemployed period.

Bock, 51, considers his advertising work to be his safety net.

"I've been very, very fortunate," he said.

He also considers himself lucky in radio to have always found work.

However, he's versatile and that talent, too, has aided his radio career.

"It's like acting," he said. "I've always been able to do what was necessary to get a job, even if that means talking less on the air . . . I can do any kind of radio."

He admits that there's probably an upper age when he won't be able to get a radio personality job.

"I'll likely transition out of radio someday," said. "But I'll go out kicking and screaming."

He really enjoyed his work at KBZN ("smooth jazz" music) and said KOSY ("soft and relaxing favorites") is also fun.

His pleasant voice is probably his biggest trademark.

"A lot of people recognize my voice," he said.

Sometimes at a supermarket someone will hear his voice and say they either know him or think they should.

He also donates plenty of time to KBYU-TV during its annual pledge drives and helps a child abuse prevention campaign and Ballet West.

Brock was instrumental in getting KPCW, Park City's public radio station, on the air years ago. He also helped its sister station, KCPW.

Born in Wenatchee, Wash., Bock got most of his schooling in Salt Lake City. He graduated from Skyline High and earned a journalism degree from the University of Utah.

Despite his busy schedule, he makes time to mountain bike. He recently did the Salt Lake Century bike ride and can often be found pedaling the Salt Lake Shoreline trail when his voice isn't getting a workout.

He also trains three or four days a week in a gym and has his own home garden, where he prides himself on growing many ingredients for his own salsa.

What kind of music does Bock like?

"I'm all over the board," he said, explaining his children are surprised at his variety of music tastes.

"Life is good," Bock said.

TEN YEARS AGO -- KJQN is nominated for "Radio Station of the Year" in Billboard Magazine's upcoming fall awards.