A strong case can be made that Charles Laquidara was the last of a breed: a major-market rock DJ who commanded top dollar on terrestrial radio, a jock whose irreverent personality drew scores of listeners to the station over several decades.
Morning drive has always been the most important — the most listened to, the most profitable — time slot in radio and Laquidara nailed down that 6 to 10 a.m. spot at WBCN (self-tagged “The Rock of Boston”) from 1972 to 1995. (Although you can subtract nearly two years because Laquidara was on sabbatical or, as he says wryly, ” ‘BCN was getting in the way of my cocaine abuse.”)
These days, Laquidara contents himself with his own eclectic , on which he plays whatever he wants. “Great radio is what I’m doing,” he says, “where I’ll play a Shostakovich piece and mix that with a Rolling Stones song. I’ll play Harry James and mix that with Miles Davis and mix that with Nirvana. I’ll just play whatever feels right and that’s not a big moneymaker. It’s better than ‘BCN’s golden age, in my very
“It’s an interesting question because it depends on who you talk to,” Laquidara says. “If you talk to Oedipus, who was a brilliant program director, he’ll say, ‘Nobody gives a s— about Charles’ music. They like Charles’ personality and Charles’ charisma. That’s why they listened to Charles.’ And he could be right.
“My personality was what kept me on the air for so long. The reason I succeeded was probably not the best reason in the world. I think. Because I f—– up so many times, people listened to that and thought, ‘Wow, great. This guy is just like me’ or, ‘If he can do that I can do it.’ ”
An Excerpt From Jim Sullivan’s “Boston’s ‘Last DJ’ Charles Laquidara Chronicles WBCN’s Rock Radio Days”
Sullivan, Jim. “Boston’s ‘Last DJ’ Charles Laquidara Chronicles WBCN’s Rock Radio Days.” Boston’s ‘Last DJ’ Charles Laquidara Chronicles WBCN’s Rock Radio Days | The ARTery, WBUR, 12 Mar. 2018, https://www.wbur.org/artery/2018/03/12/charles-laquidara-daze-in-the-life.