James Grant and “Urban Rock Radio” Remembered

It’s almost been a year since WHFR DJ James Grant suddenly passed away. He is in the “Theme Attic” Hall of Fame because of the vision that he had for music that he broadcast as “Urban Rock Radio.” It centered on “black” rock artists that didn’t quite fit the corporate world. Believe me, I don’t think any of these artists had a bigger fan than James, or “Jimi,” as he called himself.

I was a regular listener to his weekly show and learned about a whole other rock world that I wasn’t even aware existed. This is coming from someone who has obsessed about music my whole life and wasn’t aware of this alternate universe. Oh, sure, I was familiar with some of the bands, but not most of them. And James had a way of packaging the music to give you his own guided tour of that world. His world.

I miss James every time I run across something that I know he would have loved. When I was lucky enough to catch George Clinton and Parliament/Funkadelic at Detroit’s Concert of Colors (in primo seats!) I know me and James would probably still be smiling and talking about it.

I miss his laughter..and that great voice!

I hardly knew him, but we used to talk a lot when we were together. One year, if that much. I really didn’t know him at all, but I feel like I’ve known him my whole life because we connected through our musical interests.

This Wednesday, February 27, 2013, I will humbly fill his time slot, 10AM-Noon EST, at www.whfr.fm and do “Urban Rock Radio” again in his memory. I will play songs that he either played or didn’t get around to playing yet. Fortunately, James knew he was doing something special and left some of it around for us to enjoy!

If you have a memory to share or a request that I might be able to play, let me know by my facebook page, Phil Maq, or at phil@philmaq.com.

Let’s remember James and never let the memory die!

Phil Maq

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