As morning radio host at WCSX-FM 94.7 and a Detroit staple for over three decades, Ken Calvert is a convivial, but determined, man who has allowed nothing to prevent him from realizing his dreams.
"Don't ever let anyone stand up and tell you that you can't do something," Calvert said. He learned that personally by overcoming personal obstacles.
"My mom had heart disease and a massive stroke which required a lot of caregiving on my father's part," he said. "Unfortunately, she passed away when I was 19, and that left a mark on everyone in the family."
Though Calvert was born into a middle class, blue collar family, he set his sights on attending Brother Rice High School in Bloomfield Hills. He knew if he wanted to attend the private school, he was going to have to pitch in.
"I worked at the Kroger at Maple and Lahser, and next door at Sherman Drugs (now Rite Aid), throughout high school," he said. "Neither is there anymore." While attending Brother Rice, Calvert decided he wanted to someday get into radio. With his jovial demeanor and outgoing personality, he flourished socially.
"At Brother Rice, I started meeting a lot of people," he said. "I was not the greatest student at all, but I was a lot of fun to be with."
Calvert went on to study at Aquinas College in Grand Rapids, and took broadcast and voice courses at Oakland Community College. Despite lacking professional experience in radio, Calvert's natural abilities helped secure his first big break at WWWW-FM 106.7. He went on to work at other local stations such as WJR and WRIF, and eventually landed a position at WCSX, where he has been able to play classic rock music for the past 10 years.
"I truly am a fan first," Calvert said. "The cornerstones for me were the Beatles and the Rolling Stones. That's when I knew immediately that I had to be a part of this industry."
Calvert attained the highlight of his career when he took a hiatus from radio to pursue a position as a regional album promotions manager with Columbia Records. There, he found himself on the road five days a week and had the opportunity to work with Bruce Springsteen on the "Darkness on the Edge of Town" tour. While his experiences with Columbia Records were monumental, the late nights and long stints away from home sent him back to his roots in Detroit. There, his signature voice earned him recognition as both a broadcaster and announcer for the Detroit Pistons.
"As much as I've accomplished in radio, people will always remember me for announcing, 'Joe Duuuumars.'"...continued on page 2