Seattle’s KZOK Has Lost its Voice


We lost a dear friend at KZOK this week, when our official “Voice of the Station” passed away, the man whose deep golden vocal cords you hear on our “sweepers” and “promos” and lots of other pre-recorded announcements, Mr. Beau Roberts. He’s also in recent years served in the same capacity at dozens of other radio stations in the U.S. and Canada. 

I knew him best as “Rockin’ Beau Roberts…Seattle’s Youngest DJ“…
I think he was 30 or so when I joined the staff at the long-defunct KXRX in the late ’80s. He got that nickname at KISW, before most of that station’s heyday air staff left when its longtime Seattle owner sold out to the broadcasting wing of an insurance company, who promised to come in and start pee-testing employees (Slaton can tell you more about that). He was a few years older than me, but came from the same “Mean Streets of Bellevue” (Sammamish High, Hyak Jr. High…)
I know the movie Dazed and Confused was filmed in Austin TX, but there were more similarities than differences. Rock and Roll music as we know it changed a lot during that time. I remember watching Winger and Cinderella videos on MTV, then going out to Seattle nightclubs and seeing bands like Soundgarden, Nirvana, and Green River who I thought were more in line with the Beatles, Stones, Who, Kinks, Sabbath, Deep Purple, and Led Zeppelin I’d grown up on. This is way better than that!
KXRX was widely regarded in the industry as a unique place where, as they say, “the inmates ran the asylum.” It was an insanely fun place to work. I started playing those bands late at night, but Beau, who saw the musical connection immediately, started playing this music on his earlier shift, which got it even more exposure (literally, as you’ll read in the Beezer comment below). His support made a huge difference in helping this new era of music take off. He just loved good rock and roll, period.
One of my most enduring memories is of him pounding on the counter in the studio, blasting his favorite band, AC/DC, or tossing the whiny new Smashing Pumpkins album aside and playing their older, much better stuff. One of the nicest people I’ve ever known, he’s been a very good friend over these many years, and I’m missing him hugely.  –Scott Vanderpool

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