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Mike Mendoza Remembers El Paso Radio in the 1970s and 1980s.

I left the radio business in 1988 to open an insurance agency office in my home town of El Paso, Texas. I've been in the insurance industry ever since. I worked for Allstate Insurance for almost 14 years, but now work for Nationwide Insurance Company in Ohio. I've been doing marketing and sales work my entire insurance career with both companies.

I started as an intern at KINT-98 in El Paso, Texas at the ripe old age of 12. I had the opportunity to work with some radio greats in the 70s like Jhani Kaye, who in those days spelled his name Johnny Kaye. Wonderful and great person!

KINT AM/FM was owned by Jim Taber during those days and was home to some other great radio names like: Guy Phillips and Michael Wall when they did the morning show under Phillips and Wall. I remember other KINT-98 veterans like: Sunny Rio, JJ Mitchell, Robert Scott, Kris Kelley, Raymond Mesa, Bob Lee, Tony Pepper, and others. I remember that the radio station used to sit in a little while building on El Paso Drive on the not so good part of town. The building housed the broadcast facilities including the station's AM antenna in back of the building itself. I remember that the ground provided such poor grounding for the antenna that the enginner used to run a garden hose into the back and would wet the ground so that the AM station's signal could be heard.

I started with Jhanni under the tuteledge of Ruben Barron--another wonderful person! I was running the Sunday morning religious programming for the station until I got my first DJ job at 14 on the AM station when Disco was hot. KINT-AM was Radio Disco 16. I was later offered to host an "All Request Show" on Sunday evenings on Kint-98 FM. What a dream come true. I was running dedications and playing songs for callers. What a great time I had. Jhani left the station to go to Chicago and Jim Zippo came in. That's when it all fell apart!!! I left KINT-98 and went to work for KELP radio, an AM station at 920 on the dial.

I worked with some other El Paso radio greats like SGT Preston, Chris "Music" Michaels, "Mucho Morgan," Raymond Mesa, Estrella Flores, Bob Payton, and others. Clearchannel sold that radio station and I went to work for a start up in El Paso by the name of 93Z. That used to the sister FM station of the very famous and successful KAMA -AM or Radio KAMA.

While at 93Z, I was working my way through college at the University of Texas at El Paso. I started as a weekend DJ and later progressed to do middays under "Mid-Day Mike Mendoza." I also did news during the morning show while working with the "Morning Flakes": Raymond Mesa, Chip Taberski, and Rick Glancey. I was the show's producer and also did character voices for them. I had a great time producing spoof commercials such as "Andale Airlines."

The PD in charge of 93Z at the time was Bob West (Robert Brulte) whose brother is now a state senator in California. He had it humming like a well oiled machine. We kicked ass in the ratings book after book with our Urban contemporary music selections and money give aways! DJ's on 93Z at the time include some of the following names: Raymond Mesa, Ron Shaw, Bob West, Baltazar Munoz, Zeezar (Cesar Asmis), Mary Chavez, Sam Ditto, "Weird brother" Jerry Wilson, Brian Roberts, Laura Warner, Georgia Saylor, and others. We had multiple #1 rating books for years in a row! We had a great group of people working with us.

Chris Michael Mendoza aka Mike Mendoza


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