Lost in the holiday fanfare was the passing of a longtime radio host on WNEW 1130. Bob Jones was 70. The family’s obituary placed in The New York Times on January 4 listed Jones’ cause of death as complications from cancer.
Jones, for parts of three decades, had hosting stints on WNEW mainstays–The Make Believe Ballroom and The Milkman’s Matinee. He remained an advocate of the “Great American Songbook,” playing the likes of Frank Sinatra and Rosemary Clooney (George’s aunt). He remained at WNEW until the end in 1992 when Bloomberg Radio took over the frequency.
One of the many colleagues that intersected with Jones is market veteran Bob Gibson. The retired newsman worked with Jones at WNEW.
“He was pleasant and always easy to get along with, but perhaps his most endearing trait was his love for the music he played and the care he took in telling stories about a particular singer or arrangement.”
In his later years, Jones was a midday announcer at classical WQXR and morning man at WQEW until Disney took over in 1998.
Andy Fisher, who handled news on Jones’ Milkman show from 1975 to 1979, recalls fun times that the duo shared at 565 Fifth Avenue.
“For a long time we would occasionally throw a piece of light classical music into the mix, and Bob would ask me to help introduce it. He called it ‘the Klassical Korner, with two K’s.’ It was always short, maybe a small piece of a symphonic work, or something quite obscure, like Faure’s stunning harp piece, Une Chatelaine en sa tour, or The Musical Snuff-Box, by the Russian composer Liadov. No wonder he was able to make the move to WQXR so easily!” Fisher says.
Jones died on December 29.
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