A day has passed since Kidd Kraddick passed away unexpectedly in New Orleans, while at a Kidd’s Kids charity event. The industry is still absorbing the loss. Rob Chickering, Kidd Kraddick’s vice president of operations/engineering for many years, gave Radio World a few minutes of time to say a few words about Kidd Kraddick.
How did you hook up with Kidd?
“I started working for Kidd Kraddick in August of 2007, and from the first day it is a blur. I was his VP of Engineering but within a year he looked at me and saw potential to be his operations manager. He was like that, always seeing more in people then they saw in themselves.”
What was he like with the show?
“He was the definition of a perfectionist and I have never met someone better who could sense energy level and timing to his audience. He was constantly at school … He studied everything, pop culture, music, latest technology. He was the technician’s host, he would push technology to the limit and I felt the job was on me to make his show better (if possible) through technology. I was constantly looking for better ways for him to do what he did with technology. He loved that. He demanded that and that became my goal and life. ”
What was it like to work with him?
“It was incredible working for him. There were times after we would do a Kidd’s Kids broadcast or a bit that involved helping people that I would be exhausted and proud of what we had accomplished. He fueled that. I have experienced some of the greatest moments in radio with him. He hated a missed opportunity and you had to be on your toes looking down the road for what he was going to need to do whatever … God, he could do radio, he loved it, loved everything about it.
But Kidd was more than just a performer:
“I used to say to him, ‘We do stupid really good,’ messing around creating crazy things to do on the air one minute and the next taking 50 families to Disney on the Kidd’s Kids trip. He did it all and I now realize that everybody respected him and miss him as much as I do. The world has lost a great, a master of his craft, entertaining people with audio. That’s what radio was and is a lot less today with his loss.”
Here’s Kraddick’s Facebook page, which has become something of a tribute page.
Fred Jacobs has a nice remembrance of Kraddick at a Jacobs Media confab in 2008.
There are two Dallas Morning News stories of interest, here and here. Kraddick and his crew were based in Dallas.