East Georgia’s Morning Show launched one year ago today, January 13, 2020, by Bryan Steele and Travis Bilger on local stations 94.9 “The Eagle”, 106.5 “The Boro” and online through the Eagle 94.9 Facebook page . One year later, they have made a tremendous difference in our community.
MASKLESS PHOTOS WERE TAKEN PRIOR TO COVID
In February of 2019 Bryan and his wife Lee Steele purchased FM stations 106.5 and 94.9 in addition to WWNS and WPTB which operates, as both AM and FM stations. WWNS is 1240 AM and 107.7 FM. WPTB is 850 AM and 99.7 FM. They also acquired the WPTB office off of Williams Road and the WWNS office on East Olliff Street.
A native of Hinesville, Bryan grew up in a radio family with his dad owning several stations. This was the period where radio was the primary source of local news and information. Radio played an important roll in keeping the community informed and in pulling the community together. It was this hyper local appeal that made radio an important part of our community.
After Nate Hirsch sold the stations locally, we saw them become more commercialized and a move away from local news and information.
Bryan understands the important role local radio can play and made it a top priority to bring hyper local coverage back as quickly as possible. Keeping his promise, one year ago today he launched, along with Travis, East Georgia’s Morning Show.
A Look Back
I (DeWayne Grice) was fortunate to be the first guest on the show and returned today by telephone, due to COVID, to reminisce on their powerfully, eventful first year. On the air each of us discussed our top three shows over the past year.
Top of the list was a very emotional interview with local radio icon, Tommy Palmer. Bryan had asked Tommy to be the host of the morning show, but due to a battle with cancer he was unable to fulfill that role. In the height of his battle, weeks before Palmer’s death, they did a long interview Tommy about his career in radio, his popular book, “The Daisy Boys Club” and his courageous fight with cancer.
Number two was the interview with local musician Clayton Hackle where he released his now wildly popular song “Georgia Calls Me Home” on the air. The refrain of that song is:
“This ground that I grew up on runs through my veins and in my bones its buried in my heart way down deep like a lighthouse on the coast it shines a light down in my soul is part of who I am and who i will always be because no matter where I roam – Georgia Calls Me Home”.
Number three was a riveting, at times unhinged interview with then U.S. Senate Candidate Doug Collins who actually came to the studio for the interview.
Host Bring Their Personality to the Show
Over the course of the year we have learned a lot about Bryan and Travis.
Bryan is an avid Sci-Fi fan and has almost an encyclopedic memory of facts and tidbits. He has an infectious laugh and always finds a way to brighten everyone’s day. His love of food always comes through. You can count on them discussing where they last had a meal or where they are going to eat daily on the show.
We learned that Travis had a tramatic injury as a child that stopped his heart and was brought back to life, he was born on Friday the 13th and has a pinchent for catching the flu and COVID.
One of his most powerful series of shows during the year was his daily chronicling of his scary battle with COVID, live on the radio. Each day you could hear is voice get weaker and the struggle to get air and to even talk.
At 25, he didn’t match any of the conventional wisdom of someone who would be effected so severely by COVID. It was a wake up call to their listeners to take the virus more seriously, no matter what age you are.
It has been an eventful year for all of us. Tuning in daily, we have an opportunity to hear from our community directly. Bryan and Travis have made a real difference in helping get us all through this pandemic and in pulling our community together.
Tune in Weekdays for the LIVE Morning Show
They typically have local guest on from 8 AM to 9 AM daily.