PERMANENT WAVES: Joe “The Godfather” Anthony with Rush during the Canadian trio’s 1975 debut trip to San Antonio where they performed at Randy’s Rodeo. Rush went on to worldwide superstardom and never forgot to credit Joe for being an early supporter.
(photo courtesy Al Rendon).

By Metal Dave

Restless and wild as a San Antonio teen during the 1980s, my music collection and high school memories were immeasurably impacted by legendary deejay, Joe “The Godfather” Anthony.

In those days, radio was more Mi Tierra than McDonald’s, meaning a maverick like Joe Anthony could spike the homogenized mix of corporate overkill with personal flavors from his home collection (see Legs Diamond versus Led Zeppelin). Thanks to  Joe and his longtime KMAC/KISS FMpartner Lou Roney, once-obscure bands like Rush (Canada), the Scorpions (Germany), Saxon (Great Britain) and Queensryche (U.S.) were rock stars in San Antonio before they signed an autograph outside their own ZIP codes.

BUDGIE: ‘Never Turn Your Back on a Friend’ featuring the future Metallica cover, ‘Breadfan.’

With Joe at the helm, San Antonio earned a worldwide reputation as the “Heavy Metal Capital of the World.” Where else could Budgie rival Boston? Where else could Angel Witch share air waves with Aerosmith? Where else were The Godz treated as such? I’ll tell you where: Nowhere! That’s where!

Rather than autopiloting albums forced onto radio by music industry robots, Joe instead offered us impossible-to-find imports and underground debut albums. When most of America was introduced to the Scorpions by way of the band’s 1982 breakthrough album, “Blackout,” San Antonio – thanks largely to Joe – was already familiar with the band’s preceding seven albums. Seven! Ditto Judas Priest.

MOXY: Featuring ‘Moon Rider,’ ‘Sail On Sail Away’ and other San Antonio favorites.

Of course Joe’s early endorsement of Rush is perhaps his greatest claim to fame (go ask Geddy Lee … and his banker). Thanks to early spins from Joe, this enduring best-selling Canadian band — for all practical purposes — actually catapulted out of San Antonio, some 1,500 miles from home. Keep in mind that this countdown to stardom took place back when tape-trading and word-of-mouth were “the Internet” of the day. In other words, the odds of Rush becoming millionaires by way of Alamo City were more complicated than a Neil Peart drum solo. Distant early warning? Indeed.

TRIUMPH: ‘Just a Game’

Triumph is another Canadian trio that owes its fame to Joe. In San Antonio, “The Blinding Light Show” was every bit as air-guitar epic and cosmically nonsensical as “Stairway to Heaven.” Add falsetto-to-the-heavens hit songs “Never Surrender,” “Fight the Good Fight” and “Lay it On the Line,” and – BAM! — suddenly Joe Anthony is an honorary member of the band (it’s true … look it up). And how about the exhaustive list of other Joe-approved Canadian bands? Anvil, Helix, Aldo Nova, Killer Dwarfs, Moxy, Max Webster, Saga, Coney Hatch, Frank Marino & Mahogany Rush, April Wine, Etc., etc., et…

LEGS DIAMOND: ‘A Diamond is a Hard Rock’ featuring the San Antonio favorite, ‘Woman.’

From soon-to-be household names like Judas Priest, Iron Maiden and Def Leppard (Great Britain) to somewhat lesser-knowns like Accept (Germany), Krokus (Switzerland), Yngwie Malmsteen (Sweden) and Loudness (Japan), Joe’s global treasure hunt put the world’s most precious metals right in my backyard. Ask Rob Halford about the importance of Joe Anthony and the Metal God will graciously surrender a litany of superlatives and heartfelt thanks. I know. I’ve done it.

And the concerts? Thanks to Joe and San Antonio, rising bands like Motley Crue, Great White, Quiet Riot, Fastway, WASP, Dokken and Rose Tattoo enjoyed big crowds (and plucking groupies) at Hemisfair Arena before they’d fully escaped the drink-n-drown club circuit (OK, nix the groupies on Rose Tattoo … and, um, all but the singer of Fastway).

OWED TO JOE: My record collection featuring Fastway, Saxon, Accept and a couple hundred other bands indebted to Joe Anthony.

Need more? How about Riot, Montrose, Axe, UFO, Heaven, Killer, Starz, Y&T (when they were still known as Yesterday & Today), Mama’s Boys, Raven, Dirty Looks, E-Z-O and Baron Rojo? All came to my attention courtesy of Joe “The Godfather” Anthony.

Of course, I’d be remiss if I failed to mention Joe’s unwavering support of local and regional acts like Prezence, Pariah, Juggernaut, Mox Nix, Pantera and many, many more.

Yes, like Joe’s legacy, the list of bands goes on forever (and ever). Sadly, “The Godfather” died in 1992, but I’ve still got a few hundred vinyl records that keep his spirit alive.

KILLER DWARFS: ‘Stand Tall.’

I could never do Joe Anthony justice in the finite space of this blog, but I hope this trip down Memory Lane was enjoyed and appreciated by all who were there.

RIP Godfather … and thanks upon thanks for all your hard rock!
Joseph Anthony Yannuzzi (1936-1992)

2Fast2Die/Metal Dave Glessner would also like to thank: Tom “T-Bone” Scheppke, Debbie “The Electric Lady” Alcocer, John Lisle and Steve Hahn for years of listening pleasure (and unintended corruption). You rock!

BELOW: Two of my favorite gems courtesy of Joe Anthony: Starz and Riot

  1. Unfortunately I wasn’t in the area in those days but knew of SA’s metal reputation as all of my favorite underground bands always played there (and no in VA) and know from my years in central Texas how important Joe was to the scene.

    Rock in peace.

    • admin says:

      Yeah, Sean. You would’ve been the biggest Joe fan. His taste and influence in music is impossible to fully explain. Thanks for reading and posting

    • Wild Bill says:

      This is Lou Rourney and Joe Anthony til midnight on KMAC (take a pause for a drag off the doobie) and KISS FM and out rolls Robin Tower – Brigde of Sighs…..Early 70’s – Thunderbird hills -NW side of Alamo city when 1604 was a Farm road and Alamo Dragway was just a thought on a paper bag in Dee Martinez kitchen table………………………………………

  2. Rex Rogers says:

    I grew up on Joe Anthony in the 80’s. I learned everything about great metal and rock n’ roll from him. That instrumental “Flash Out” from Loudness still takes me back to those days. Rock Louder!

  3. Mark Lee says:

    Wow!! You have just heard a piece of real SA rock and roll history. The journey with the Godfather started when I was in middle school. I will never forget staying up until midnight on Fridays for Joe. I wore out my Panasonic boom box recording all my favorites and still have most of the tapes to prove it. My vinyl collection is a who’s who of 80’s rock, many of which are inspired by Joe Anthony and his reign on 99.5 KISS. Looking back on it now, i didnt realize how ahead of the game he was ( and us as a result). Over the years i began to realize how good we had it after seeing many of the bands you mentioned pay tribute to Joe. Go to any metal show in SA today and you will see all of our generation with the same look in there eye.It is the look of experience and gratefulness that SA really was and is the Heavy Metal Capital of the World. Every band told it to us at every concert. After all these years I know it was not lip is the TRUTH. I saw TBone at the recent Scorpions show in SA and i thanked him. I heard his voice behind me standing at the booth of the new station he is at. I recognized it right away. I never got to meet or thank Joe but i will always hear his voice as it sounded through the speakers. Thank you Joe Anthony and thank you Dave for recognizing such an important contributor. Rock on brother!! Mark

    • admin says:

      Well said, Mark! Great recollection my friend. Thanks for taking the time

    • David G says:

      Used to pick up a signal back in the day in the mid 70’s as a kid. Was a hundred miles away but on a good day when i caught a signal, it was like a hard rock education. So many great unknown bands were discovered by me just by tuning in to The Godfather. It’s not a cliche to say that those days are over and probably never will return again.

  4. Mark Lee says:

    Oh and this phrase should ring a bell as it was the prelude to many a song,

    ” This is __________(insert name) of _______(insert band name) and your rockin with The Godfather Joe Anthony on 99.5 KISS San Antonio!!”

    My favorite was always Klaus Meine’s because of the heavy German accent and the passion in which he said it. I found myself yelling that in the crowd at the recent show. Those that “knew” turned around with a smile.

  5. Steven Blackmore says:

    Hey Dave, this guy sound’s very much like ex BBC Radio One Friday Rock Show host Tommy Vance. You’ve mentioned him to me quite a few time’s, he did killer job from what you’ve just said we need more DJ’s like him etc.. To carry the flag for Hard Rock and Metal music..

  6. Al says:

    My fondest memory or should I say huge impact moment from Joe was when he debuted Accept’s Fast as a Shark. Me and Craig were in the parking lot of GW Jrs hot dog stand on Walzem RD. No looking back after that one. Got the red vinyl the next weekend.

  7. Triple A says:

    This article is great!
    I have most of these albums and Moxy is one of my favorite. I had to special order it because I could not find it local. I must say he influenced me and made me into the music lover I am today.

  8. Jesi says:

    wow a great read and tribute to a man that introduced us to so much music!Thanks Dave!

  9. Bill says:

    I think Joe’s theme song was by White Pigs – Blessed are the Unholy. If you look it up on Youtube its listed as White Pigs – munster’s theme song. Anyone else remember this being Joe’s theme song??? Moxy, Legs Diamond, Rush, etc., etc… All the songs Joe played are the same ones that are on my favorite playlist today. @Mark Lee I totally can hear the KLAUS MEINE promo in my head! Rock on guys!

  10. Blanca says:

    Sure do remember those days Moxy was my first concert they headlining for Black Sabbath and Boston In good ole San Antonio I grew up with Joe Anthony The God Father of Rock Those memories will lst me a life time wouldnt trade them for nothing in the world Awesomenesssss

  11. Samuel Vilo says:

    I have Prezence, Jumbo and Heyoka and other really hard to get Joe Anthony faves for anyone who needs it. Just want to keep the music alive.

  12. Samuel Vilo says:

    Also I have as slayer…liquid sky cry for the king…winterkat light of day and more.

  13. Samuel Vilo says:

    S.A. Slayer…damn auto correct…jumbo played the Godfather Theme as a tribute to Joe.

  14. Samuel Vilo says:

    I just posted Jumbo-Classified Love, Winterkat-Light Of Day and Liquid Sky- Cry For The King on YouTube in honor of Joe Anthony. Those are 3 artists/songs I have not seen on YouTube before. Check em out and comment on YouTube if you like.

  15. James says:

    Very cool post! I just found this while surfing around for some info on Joe Anthony. I grew up in SA during the late 70’/early 80’s, and remember his shows well. I’m currently putting together a setlist to play on our high schools internet radio station. Of course I’ll be starting out with Loudness, then Starz…

  16. Charlie says:

    Bands would make sure to hit SA on either Friday or Saturday night! I was lucky enough to spend most of the 80s and early 90s listening to Joe…Thank you Joe for all you did!

  17. Leslie says:

    I worked for a few years at 99.5 KISS ( after growing up listening to Joe Anthony).. He was just awesome!!! Leslie

    • admin says:

      Thanks Leslie. I bet you have some great stories. Joe was so important to my rock collection and memories. Thanks for reading and posting your comment, 2F2D

  18. evildedd says:

    I will never forget listening to Joe Anthony’s Metal Hour every night. actually it became like a three hour show after a while.

  19. robert says:

    Joe Anthony was a huge part of my growing up in San Antonio. I was raised on his influence of bands. Please think about getting this information on Wikipedia.

  20. Jimmy Propst says:

    I just saw something about early Rush on Twitter and decided to try and see if the SA Randy’s Rodeo show was their first American gig. I was there, and that day was the time I met Joe Anthony, who was consumed with bringing the show off smoothly. WAY too many people showed up, and when an announcement said not everybody could come inside, beer bottles flew. Joe kept a potentially bad situation from turning into a riot when he got on the PA and started to explain.. everyone in the crowd shut up at once, and quickly calmed down. That Voice – we had all practically been raised by it, and you had no fear it would lead you the wrong way – I can hear it now like it is a record I have always kept – I hadn’t thought about this in years, then I stumbled onto this site and man does it all come back..
    I lived in McQueeney, between New Braunfels and Seguin, and grew up on KMAC – KISS, Joe Anthony and Lou Roney. When you say we had it good, boy you aren’t kidding. There wasn’t internet everything RIGHT NOW like today, and, for example, a friend in Seguin had one of the very few copies of the Oz Knozz LP “Ruff Mix”. My friends and I made the pilgrimage to his house to dub that record onto reel-to reel tape. How did we know about that obscure band? KMAC – KISS. Joe Anthony would get on a kick for some band or song and for a couple weeks could not be shaken of it.. When Santana’s Europa, on the LP “Moonflower”, came out I remember one afternoon as it finished playing Joe took a long pause, pulled a deep sigh and played it again, TWICE.. Looking back I consider myself really lucky to have had the kind of influence on my music likes and dislikes that Joe and Lou provided. And let’s not forget Mark Chapman, who ran the KMAC side from 6 pm till dark in the late 70s – early 80s. KISS listeners today have a great station to be proud of, but to really understand the KMAC – KISS (spread the word..remember the sticker?) of those days was to have lived it. Any one of us would have taken a bullet to keep that sweet sound playing. Loyalty is a slogan now, but it was serious business “back in the day”. There should be something more than a blog where these memories and ideas can live.. I don’t know quite what that would be, exactly, but for someone who cannot even type to pour out like this – good stuff.
    I can trace everything musical back to these guys.. I prefer an LP to not be ‘banded’, a forgotten term today but referring to the tracks on the side of an album being broken into individual songs with silence between them – look at most records and there are ‘bands’ between the songs – and the key ones not banded are of course “Dark Side of the Moon” and “Wish You Were Here”, which may seem surprising choices to be in such a ‘metal’ rotation but they were – testament to the freestyle ways of these guys. I do photography now and did then, when there were real ‘darkrooms’, and I remember one extremely trippy afternoon I was developing and printing pictures and this strange music was seemingly NEVER going to end – it was the KMAC – KISS debut of Kraftwerk’s LP “Autobahn”, quite naturally being played in its entirety with no commercials… Joe A. strikes again. Most records were banded, but I have liked the ‘no silence’ concept my whole life – Mahogany Rush, 2112, Alan Parson’s “Tales of Mystery and Imagination”, Pink Floyd – these were and remain my favorites, thanks to you know what station.
    OK I don’t want my computer to run out of ink, so I will leave with this.. when some old geezer talks about the good old days at KMAC – KISS.. tip your hat and give a little nod to Greatness. Those really WERE the good old days.

    • admin says:

      Jimmy, thanks for an amazing comment on 2Fast2Die. You clearly remember and respect Joe Anthony. I appreciate readers like you who are truly passionate about music and the personalities that give it life. Thanks for finding me. Best regards, Dave/2Fast2Die

      • Jimmy Propst says:

        Everything came tumbling out, and the details were kind of blurred. After processing it a while, I realized that it was not Mark Chapman, but Mark Champion.. Apologies Mark if you saw this, I got it corrected as soon as I realized the mistake I had made..
        Thanks again Dave for this really nice piece being here.. I will try to ‘spread the word’ about 2fast2die…and if I find my stash of 70s KMAC – KISS stickers, you will be the first to get one.

    • mike says:

      Wrong. The first Rush performance was in New Jersey a year before they made it to San Antonio.

      • admin says:

        I never said San Antonio was Rush’s first North American concert. I said they built one of their first loyal U.S. followings there.

  21. Douglas Landis says:

    I was a Joe Anthony fan for years, thanks in part to my older brother. He would drive me home from school, playing tapes of bands he heard on Joe Anthony’s show! Of course, I became a fan too. One song in particular still bounces around in my head to this day. “Crystal Butterfly”. I love that song to DEATH! I was lucky enough to meet the Godfather at one of the KISS FM sponsored events. I think it was the Fantastic Film Festival that they had every year. Lots of old sci-fi and fantasy films ( always old chewed up copies, too!) and tons of listeners on various drugs, sneaking alcohol into the theatre. Oh wait, that was me! Uh… sorry. Anyway, got to meet Joe after the movies and in person he was a rather quiet, and unassuming guy. Only when he put on the radio voice did your skin get all gooseflesh! We miss ya Joe. Rock on!

    • admin says:

      Thanks for a great comment on my 2Fast2Die page. I, too, LOVE “Crystal Butterfly.” The band was Killer(s)? if I recall correctly. GREAT song.Thanks for reading and sharing. Cheers, dave/2Fast2Die

  22. I so wanted to live in San Antonio just b/c of Joe Anthony!

  23. Lisa says:

    Grew up on this stuff in the late 70’s. Spread the Word!

    You knew you had grown up when you stopped rushing home after to school to watch Capt. Gus and Batman and instead you were tuning in to listen to the Godfather.
    He’d play two different bands and ask us to call in and vote for which one we liked better.

  24. Terri Jauer says:

    Thank you So much for this!!! I came to Texas from the Midwest to San Anto in the late 70’s…a scared little farm girl only 16…and discovered ROCK! Course went straight to hell after that, but I am now an accomplished RN, but will NEVER forget my early SA roots nor Joe Anthony!!! <3

  25. Gary Neal says:

    I grew up on Kmac and Joe and Lou. The bands he brought here to Austin also was my life. Long live the memory of the Godfather.

  26. I was 14 in 1977, when UFO’s ‘Strangers in the Night’ came out. Joe Anthony used to put the record on and just let it play. All of side one, no breaks and no commentary between songs. Then side two, if he felt like it, etc. I remember him doing the same thing with Riot’s ‘Rock City’. It was ‘independent’ radio. Joe and Lou didn’t answer to anybody. I remember once listening at three in the morning, might’ve been Lou’s shift – after listening to a whole album side, we got about twenty minutes of the needle dragging at the end of the record – I guess Lou had fallen asleep, or maybe’d gone out for a drink (or whatever) and forgot to come back. Among my personal favorites – Angel, The Hunt, Budgie, Legs Diamond, and of course Rush. I moved away to live in Austin, then Massachusetts for several years, and now I live in Brussels, Belgium. I’m a long way and many years from home, but Joe and Lou have always remained with me, and I always tell the story of KMAC/KISS to anyone who will listen. And I still play those old bands. Yes, they’re old now. For the record, there were a lot of bands back then that Joe and Lou missed, that we never got to hear. Through the marvelous internet I have been introduced to forgotten/’unknown’ bands like Truth and Janey, Poobah and Alkana, who were ‘legendary’ in their own little hot spots, like Cleveland, Ohio (another town that was an ‘early-adopter’ of Rush).

  27. Dave says:

    Howard W Davis the Owner of KMAC/KISS did not want to pay major record companies a Royalty to play their music, so Lou and Joe HAD NO CHOICE but to find something else to play, so they hit on the idea of playing imports… but hardly anyone knows this.

  28. ERS says:

    Here is my Joe Anthony story. I was just a teenager from Helotes back in the mid to late seventies I guess when one evening I get a call from my dad. He tells me he needs some pot for him and his friends. Yes he knew I was a stoner and was always down on pot smokers, so this really blew my mind. Anyway I agree to bring him some fine buds that I happened to have at the time. He tells me to come over to the Valentine Brothers house. (Johnny and Dale Valentine the pro wrestlers.) Anyway, I get there and Joe Anthony is there as well. Here I was about 16 or so and my Dad is hanging out withe the Valentine Brothers and the God or rock himself Joe Anthony. It just blew my mind. So I got to spend the night hanging with my Dad, Dale and Johnny Valentine and Joe Anthony drinking and toking. It was a rocker’s dream! We all got really loaded and had a ball! My Dad never spoke of that night and it was like it never happened. I’ll never forget it.

  29. dcruz says:

    Okay, here’s my tale…

    it’s 1:30am on a weekend and I’m working the night shift mopping the floor of an Exxon station located at I-10 and Callaghan rd. I’m listening to the radio hoping to hear something cool when The Godfather asks if anyone wants to hear anything special. Being a lifelong resident of S.A. growing up with KMAC/KISS I knew what to expect. So I dialed up the line and Joe Anthony begine to chat. He starts off asking what I wanted to hear and I remember what I told him “Last Rose of Summer” by Judas Priest. He seemed impressed that I knew the song and we started talking about music and local bands. I have a very good friend in a SA band called BAADNEWZ so I was somewhat familiar with the scene. Then we got on this topic that surprised him. I asked him if he ever traded imported wine from Italy for weed way back in the day (circa 70’s) at his first pizza restaraunt long since closed. I knew the guy on the other end who told me stories. He was taken aback and said “Man, I gotta meet you. That was a long time ago.” So I said Okay and he asked where I was because he got off the air around 4 in the morning or something. I gave hime my coordinates and, “Whoa!, I’m right across the street from the KISS station on I-10. So, Joe shows up and we develop a friendship and hang out and party at times. He even gave me a bottle of wine to give to my wife on her birthday. He was cool guy and it surprised me that he lived over by Ft. Sam with his mother that he took care of. He invited me to go over to Europe and hang out with Juda Priest one time. We talked about music and he would give me obscure recordings (Leatherwolf!!) now and then. Things got kind of wierd once… then he was gone. But, “there ain’t no sense to bitch about it ‘cuz we all know what’s gone wrong…”

    • admin says:

      Great story, Dion. And great reference to Garfield at the end. A Joe Anthony favorite/classic for sure! Thanks for reading and sharing

  30. Flagman00 says:

    Great story and great memories. I actually met The Godfather twice at KISS-FM sponsored events.
    Right now listening to Starz “Its A Riot”. Haven’t heard that in decades 9or so it seems). I need to put that on my mp3 layer!

  31. Joebob says:

    This really brings me back. In the late 70’s and early 80’s KMAC and KISS would simulcast at night except that KMAC was not broadcasting between midnight and 6am. I was working for a computer company as a night shift driver and the company car only had an AM radio. This was especially frustrating on Friday nights since that is when Joe would do his “Battle of the Bands”. Since I started work at 11pm I would at least get to hear an hour while working but never the results since, if I remember correctly, he would announce the results around 1am. Battle of the Bands was always a great listen since Joe would simply play one track after another alternating between the two competitors. So many good memories of the sounds of KMAC and KISS.

  32. Lee says:

    As a native Torontonian it is very cool to know the local bands I worshipped like Max Webster, Moxy, Coney Hatch, Triumph, Killer Dwarfs and Santers were getting exposure far from home thanks to a real maverick in the music industry who put the music first. Bravo Joe, Bravo.

  33. Vince says:

    Love this, man…absolutely love it. Such an awesome article. I was 12 years old, laying in my bed somewhere around 1:00-2:00 a.m., and the opening riff to Budgie’s Breadfan came wailin’ out of my little portable radio that I had up against my ear. I almost peed the bed. At that time, Kiss (the band) was the meanest, nastiest, heaviest thing around for me and my buds. Not after that night. From that point on, we saw the Frank Marino (Mahogany Rush) concert that became the Live album in ’76, with Pat Travers and WidowMaker. Budgie with Garfield would follow, along with Rainbow (on the Long Live Rock and Roll tour…yes, with DIO!), UFO/Triumph, Rush: Farewell to Kings tour, Legs Diamond/The Godz, Moxy, Riot, The Hunt, Starz, Judas Priest: Stained Class, my favorite Priest to this day, Fate’s Warning, old QueensRyche, etc. etc. Yes, Joe Anthony/Lou Roney definately shaped the landscape of my musical future. It changed my life forever. And for that, I am eternally grateful. People that were not around to hear/witness the awesome, heavy rock and roll that we were blessed with will never have a clue. It wasn’t Metal. It was just plain ol’ hole in the jeans, concert t-shirt, partyin’ hard rock and roll. Hard Rock. No other way to describe it. And we were drifting along in the wake of the those Kings of the airwaves. Man, we were Godz of rock and roll! I’m thankful for that.

  34. Johnny Silva says:

    Awesome article!
    This is exactly how I would’ve written it!
    You put every band on this!

  35. Jay graduate 1977. Was also at the randys rodeo show. REX, Trapeeze, dirty tricks along with ones allready mentioned were groups I turned people on to in the navy. They had not heard of ac dc or priest and were blown away by all the albums I had. Joe and Lou and all the kiss people influenced my music taste. The venues were awsome randys, joe freeman, municipal, sunken gardens all the clubs just great. Rush 3 nites in a row at municipal, farwell to kings tour, still have the black t and stubb. Dazed and confused is accurate movie of south texas high school scene. Emporium, ice houses still own my 1971 grabber blue maverick. Thanx kiss and kmac, turned on kmac in my moms car one day and joe played sweet leaf and she lauged and told me I was crazy.

  36. Geoffrey says:

    In Holland the story goes that Vandenberg’s hitsingle “Burning Heart” was first played in the US by a Texas-radio station. Does anybody know if this was Joe Anthony on KISS FM?

    • admin says:

      Geoffrey, I can’t say for certain, but I do know Joe Anthony played that song constantly and certainly helped introduce Vandenberg to Texas and the U.S. They also had an MTV video for the song (but it rarely got played) and they did a tour with KISS which I’m willing to bet was in part owed to Joe making the band popular in the southern U.S. If he didn’t introduce Vandenberg to the U.S., he certainly championed them to a wider audience and helped bring them to these shores … just like he did for countless other overseas bands (and we’re glad he did!!). Thanks for reading and commenting

  37. Mark Almendarez says:

    Man, lots of memories of those days. I used to wait for Joe’s show to with my portable radio, just to hit record and get every part of the show and hit stop during commercials. I remember listening to Accept’s Fast as a Shark for the first time and totally blew my mind. I had to go and get Restless and Wild album on bloody red vinyl, as it was advertised on the album. Thanks to Joe I got to meet Queensryche at Westlakes mall for an autograph signing of they’re first album release self titled. Lady wore black was a big song back then that Joe would play. Album only had four songs..all of them rocked. I loved listening to the Eagle has landed by Saxon..Joe would usually play it late in his show…which by then everyone would be blazed listening to the show standing outside of my buddy’s car…RIP Louie. Angel’s song The Tower and Axe’s song Battles are true classics brought to us by the Great Godfather of Rock and Roll, Joe Anthony. He might be gone but will never be forgotten..thanks Joe for the fantastic memories I will never forget…and the awesome music I sill play on my phone Mp3 today. RIP Joe!!

    • admin says:

      Mark, thanks for reading and sharing your memories. Joe obviously touched all of our lives in a way we’ll never forget. Sadly, future generations will never know what it’s like to have such an influential DJ with the power to share his personal favorites (radio today is so bland and robotic). Fortunately, WE do! If you happen to live in San Antonio, keep an eye out for an upcoming tribute to Joe Anthony at Bond’s 007 Rock Bar on Sept. 12. Details will be posted on facebook and I will be a featured guest speaker along with tribute bands playing Rush, Saxon, Judas Priest and more

      • Mark Almendarez says:

        Thanks for the info..I’ll definitely be looking out for the show. And in the words of Joe Anthony..Rock and Roll!

  38. Paul says:

    This brings back so many great memories. I grew up in NB and graduated high school in 1977. Remember listening to Joe and Lou when they simulcast on KMAC & KISS. Joe was the best! He would play whole albums then do an on the spot ad for his favorite Italian restaurant. (dont’ remember the name of the places but I could tell Joe had the munchies just by how he would talk about the food :). Rush was my absolute favorite during high school. I didn’t get to see them at Randy’s Rodeo but did see them at Municpal Auditorium for the 2112 tour in ’76 and All the Worlds a Stage tour only 6 or 7 months later.
    Joe also help me become a huge Mozy fan and I did get to see them at Randy’s Rodeo.
    Good times!!

    • Paul says:

      Sorry, I meant Moxy fan

      • Richard S says:

        NB graduate 1982. Those were the best times growing up listening to Joe Anthony !! Pat Travers, Pretty Maids, Prezence, Gary Moore, Thin Lizzy, Killer, Starz, Rhett Forrester, The Godz, Garfield just to name a few. A friend and I have been busy building up a music library on USB to always have for future rockers !! Joe was truly one of a kind, a pioneer !! Thanks Joe for all the kick ass music !

  39. Louis Fernandez says:

    Tomorrow if you’re in kerrville area rev fm radio will be playing music Joe Anthony made famous from 3-7pm

    • admin says:

      Thanks for the heads-up, but tomorrow I will actually be hosting an event in San Antonio commemorating the 22-yr anniversary of Joe’s passing. Thanks for reading and posting, my rock-n-roll brother!

  40. Scott Ostrom says:

    Another Joe fan found a radio station that still plays these many favorites. For example, “the half hour metal hour” tonight played Iron Maiden’s “Wrath Child”, followed by Judas Priest’s “Running Wild”, followed by Accept’s “Midnight Mover”, followed by Killer Dwarfs “Stand Tall”, followed by Motorhead’s “Ace of Spades”, and ending with Metallica’s “Welcome Home”. What a set!!! Straight from the Joe Anthony playbook. This magic station is KRVL in Kerrville. Fortunately, you can listen from their website ( or their free phone app. I’ve also heard Riot and old James Gang. I’ve just started listening and look forward to radio again. Cheers, Joe – the spirit lives on!

  41. bill says:

    1970 san antonio tx. me and my cousin wayne jackson used large pieces of card board to bob sled down the side of 281/37 embankment at macrelas mall. his buddy was a drummer that would listen to kmac am and play along with the rock music. and some times to ktsa am. back before grafetti took over the south west side. today if you walk down young st. to mission road you need a flac jacket. evil has followed me my whole life. i except it its my lot in life. that dont have much to do with lou ronie. but when i drive through the belly of the beast/san antonio i think of hell ant no bad place to be. sincerly totally fucked up.

  42. Rev Jim says:

    Great article, right on the money ! In those days I lived in Austin when I could afford it, Temple otherwise. Where during the day you could pick up KMAC on your car radio, a beacon of Rock beaming in to Bell County…. But as much as I enjoyed the article there is a HUGE omission ! How in the name of all that is holy did AC/DC not get mentioned ? Hell, KMAC/KISS broke them out in this country ! And I was one of those lucky enough to be at AC/DC’s very first gig, opening for Moxy at The Armadillo. I went in convinced that Moxy was the better band, that lasted till about AC/DC’s second song. I don’t think the guys in Moxy ever recovered from it.

    • admin says:

      Great comment, Jim. Thanks for reading. And your point on AC/DC is well taken. I was born in San Antonio and then moved away, but returned in 1982-83. By then I was a teen and listening to Joe Anthony on 99.5 KISS. By that point, AC/DC was already huge and I didn’t really consider Joe as being the guy who brought them to my attention (like the other bands mentioned in the article). You were obviously in the game before me! Thanks for the historical perspective

  43. Rev Jim says:

    Correction to my post above; that should have said “their very first American gig”. Obviously. They played SA the next night

  44. Leiane Oviedo says:

    I’m very proud to say I attended the University of Joe Anthony’s Rightious Rock N Roll. What a wonderful time it was. Every concert was the Adventure of a lifetime, & every song on the radio was the best thing you had ever heard.
    Such sweet memories, that past very quickly by.
    Thank You, Joe Anthony…You Rocked us like a Hurricane.

  45. Bill Ogle says:

    Wow, lots of memories coming back to me here. 75-78 was my rock-n-roll time in San Antonio. Something reminded me of “penny for your thoughts, mister, penny for your thoughts” last night, started googling, found Garfield – Private Affair, and here I am today. Judas Priest was huge there in SA, joined the Nav, got to see them in Orlanda FL at the Great Southern Music Hall, 1 o’clock in the morning they starteted, and my room-mate fell asleep. AC/DC was coming to the Orange Bowl, the sponsoring radio station didn’t even play them. What an awesome time and place to experience music as I grew up. Not sure if Joe had anything to do with it or not, but the Motor City Madman, Ted Nugent came to town at least twice a year. A lot of the bands that opened for the big guys became hometown favorites. Thanks for the ride down memory lane.

  46. Wild Bill says:

    Early 70’s for me. Came to the Alamo City from Big LA.. To me Motown like Hip Hop today was taking over the stations out in Los Angeles……101.5 KHJ “Big Boss”Radio was promoting Motown big time. I get to the Alamo City and freaked out. Here I am in the middle of miltiary and Swift premium packing company – cow town USA – and here sits the Joe Anthony and fuzz head Lou Rourney and from what I was gathering from those in the rock and roll groups Joe was the front door man for what we called “acid rock” back then…..Seen the doors when they getting started in 68 out in LA and having internal problems with Morrison. Had the first LP’s from Iron butterly and stepenwolf when they first got started in 68 and gave the ablums away almost in mint condition as I was cleaning out a closet for the first wife in 1978. Seen Hendrix at the UCLA convention center before he left us in 70 and from what I understand from second wife who is 2 years older and me and remembers a hell of a lot more than me that I witnessed the birth of “acid rock” and from what I understand “heavy metal” ….. Program on KMAC AND KISS wasnt very long and from what I can remember was over by mid-night…..Took a mini vacation about 2 years ago to the Alamo City and remember stopping by Joe Freeman colseium and wanted to show my wife about where i sat at to see as Joe Anthony called him back then “little stevie tyler and his group “AeroSmith”…….back I beieve in 72 or 73…..That broke the scared rodeo coverneant between the cattle ranchers of the Swift premium backing corp in the Alamo City and San Antonio Rodeo assoc…..There was a big stink about it, noboady except Loretta lynn was to wear long hair in the Joe Freeman colseium….Lou Roney laughed so hard on the air about the whole situation that I think his Coca Cola came back through his nose……Joe Anthony just commented, that during that time of the concert they took in more revenue than all the country boys from KBUC took in….OOCH…..All my wife told me was – Joe Freeman colseium – this place is really old………….Eventually share the time I took my 35 year old daughter to see Robin Trower at the meridian (here in the Bayou City) in 2006………

  47. Wild Bill says:

    My wife reminded me that I told her the front row tickets back then to see “little stevie Tyler” and his group “AeroSmith” cost me $5 dollars apiece………Last time I saw “AeroSmith” was in 2006 (?) at the “Woodsland Pavilion” here in the Bayou City…….Those were expensive tickets……I think I have the t-shirt……

  48. Charmaine says:

    Hey Y’all,

    I’m trying to find some pics of Cardi’s bar, San Antonio Tx in 80s. There were some freakin awesome gigs there. Can anyone help?

  49. Mark says:

    You hit the nail on the head. I went to Trinity University in San Antonio from 1976 – 1980. I listened to KISS daily. They were competing against KEXL and KTSA (I believe). KEXL was a great station that went off the air back then, playing The End by The Doors as their last song. Then KTSA went 24 hour disco! Unreal. But Lou was gonzo before I knew what that meant. He debuted The Wall by Pink Floyd and we were all listening on the radio. But then he did what made himself great: He JERKED the needle off the record on the air declaring the album to be disco! The Wall! And if you listen to it you can hear the disco drum beat they incorporated into the album (“We don’t need no education…”). Lou was such a purist. Another time he blew about 30 minutes on the air trying to figure out the right way to pronounce San Pedro (Is it San PEHDRO or San PEEEEDRO?). I heard all the heavy metal bands you mentioned but the one song that takes me back is Victim of Changes by Judas Priest. What a wild song and back then only KISS was playing it.

    • admin says:

      Haha!! Pink Floyd disco?? Great story. Yeah, the golden days when a DJ could play whatever he/she wanted and for any length of time (smoke break, restroom). Good stuff, and of course, “Victim of Changes” became a lengthy (by radio standards) staple on SA radio. Thanks for sharing your story

  50. Stanley Pullin says:

    Those were the days. We’d drive 60 miles to Hemisfair Arena listening to KMAC (didn’t have FM), partaking party herb and get to rock out and eyeball hot SA chicks. Love every minute. Saw too many bands to remember and can’t anyway. Long live Joe Anthony and Mr. Pizza.

  51. Ken Jackson says:

    My parents moved us to SA in 1980 from Philly. WOW! Can you say “CULTURE SHOCK”! … Being a teen of 13 the first night I was there I cruised the dial on my little boom box scanning for the lame ass music I was raised on from Philthadelphia. Round and round the dial goes, where she stops nobody knows. BAM! I land on 99.5 KISS. My life was forever changed heading in a direction I could have never concieved in my head at the age of 13. My story of this radio station reads as many of the comments above. I too was there. I have tried to explain this happening to folks outside the area and they just look at you like a calf staring at a new gate and say “cool”. There is no explaination or story in any fashion that can make someone who did not experience this phenomenon understand the magnitude of the impact this scene made on so many lives. I was in SA back in 2010 I believe at Fiesta and Don Dokken played with a couple of opening bands preceding him. One of the bands blew me away, playing a bunch of old classic stuff from the 99.5 hay days. What was so great about this band and why I felt they stole the show that night was because they were all 14 years old. It was good to return to SA and hear the sounds that Joe & Lou blessed us all with still straightening the ear lobes of the SA metal army GODZ. The GODZ are rock and roll machines !!!

    • admin says:

      Well said, Ken. Thanks for reading and posting your story. You’re right. It was a special time and you had to be there. Glad we were!

  52. Greg Baumann says:

    Responding to Jimmy Propst’s post from 2013:

    Jimbob, That was masterfully written, and you speak for a whole generation of KISS listeners. Every word of it brought back memories that have been covered in cobwebs for several decades. I, too, felt privileged back in the day to have my musical world shaped by two off-kilter DJ’s at KMAC/KISS who pioneered “alternative” radio way before most Gen-X’ers were even born. I remember that Rush concert at Randy’s Rodeo and being among the privileged to get a seat inside. A couple of songs into the concert I was still on my feet in full “rock out” mode when a flying beer bottle hit me in the back of the head and nearly knocked me out. That was the only bad memory I have from the event, and looking back on it, it only makes that night more surreal. I had almost forgotten about Ozz Knozz, but after reading this blog, I’m on a mission to pirate some of these exceedingly obscure tunes since it’s unlikely I’ll hear them ever again any other way. Might look for some Trapeze while I’m at it… Godspeed Joe!

  53. Eric Griffin says:

    Thank God for the “Godfather” and KMAC 630 AM! Living and growing up in Austin, TX. and finding somehow that station out of San Antonio I listened to ROCK as never before.
    The summer of 1975, I still can remember Joe Anthony say ” this is Nazareth” and the song is “Miss Misery” and come right back with “The Tower” by Angel. He finished up his segment with “The Night Creeper” by “Hustler” and I was hooked man. Austin’s KLBJ FM would just play, ZZ Top, Stones, Hendrix, Zappa and Bob Marley which is cool, but it wasn’t this ROCK that’s was uniquely in it’s own world of heavy metal ROCK. Of coarse during the period ’76 – ’85, my friends and I would drive to SA to see and hear those bands Joe brought to SA. Riot, Moxy, Legs Diamond, Yesterday & Today, Budgie, Mahogany Rush, Prezence, April Wine, The Hounds, Brownsville Station, Derringer, Dirty Tricks, Armageddon, Rush “2112”, Widowmaker, Trigger, Truimph, Starz, Oz, UFO, Max Webster, Thin Lizzy, Pat Travers, F.I.S.T., Jumbo, Sammy Hagar, and of coarse if I remember correctly. Memorial Day Weekend of 1980 at the Hemisphere Arena Joe booked: Headliner was Ted Nugent, then the Scorpions and the US for the 1st time to play and open up was Def Leppard! Man I couldn’t hear for 3 days after that show! On through the night a 1979 Classic, Joe played everyday. I still have a lot of those albums from that era and when I hear those tunes from back in the day. It brings me back to all great and fun times growing up in Austin. Thanks Joe, we love you here in Austin too!! RIP JOE from Gibby Nation Rocks!

  54. Mike says:

    We moved to S A in 1978 I was 14 years old and starting my freshman year at MacArthur H S. I had an old Sears am/fm radio single speaker on the nightstand next to my bed. I remember lying awake and listening to Joe late at night I think he came on around 11 or midnight. I remember he was a huge Rush fan as was and still am. His show is where I first heard bands like Triumph,Moxy,The Hunt,Budgie,UFO,Angel and dozens of others. This man was so instrumental in introducing new rock bands to San Antonio and Texas and he was huge in publicizing their careers. A rock music dj pioneer who will always be loved and missed by true San Antonio rock music fans. RIP JOE YOU WILL ALWAYS BE LOVED AND MISSED.

  55. Casanova says:

    I grew up in San Antonio by The Varsity drive-in. There was a business across the street called Mr. Pizza, I understood that Joe Anthony owned Mr. Pizza and that after a lot of the concerts the bands would go and eat at Joe Anthony’s Restaurant. I have heard stories of Rush, Judas Priest, Moxy and other bands all enjoying pizza at Joel Anthony’s Restaurant after the concerts. Mr. Pizza was located across the street from the Varsity Theater which is at the corner of Culebra and 24th Street. A friend of mine has a book of poetry By Phil Lynott of Thin Lizzy which was signed by Phil Lynott and Joe Anthony. It is the prize of his collection. I wonder how many people now that Mr.Pizza existed and that mmanyrock lengends hung out at that off- corner resturant. Theres an HEB where the Varsity drive-in used to be and a popeyes fried chicken on that legendary corner. As an old SA rocker, i always and still think thereoe should be a plaque, reminding everyone and fans of the musical contribution of
    Joe Anthony. I have great memories of waiting till 10 oclock, outside with my friends, listening to the radio, and then that opening jam starts, signifying its time for the God-father of Rock n Roll.

    • admin says:

      Thanks for reading and posting. If I’m not mistaken, the leading photo of Rush with Joe was taken at Mr. Pizza. I like your idea of a plaque!

  56. The Campbell Bros. says:

    Cool article. Nice to see that Domino is still not forgotten. R.I.P.

  57. Rick says:

    Great blog….brings back tons of memories from a better time. We were truly baptised in great rock and metal thanks to Joe and Lou. I was in Navy boot camp back in April 1980 and on of the guys asked if we wanted to hear a new band that he liked. Well he popped in a cassette and it was the Scorpions ” Animal Magnatism “. After I had a good laugh I schooled him a bit on his “new band” theory. First heard them on Kiss in the 70s and they’ve been my favorite band ever since. Great place to keep the ” historical documents so to speak.

  58. eng says:

    Back in late 70’s and early 80’s I was just waiting for the Godfather on 99.5 Kiss to start with the new bands and man you talking bout a treat. and when the T-bone came on was like the best of both world teaching the young! the best thanks for all you guys with all that ya’ll did for our young life’s. Midnite was the best!

  59. Jess says:

    My gosh listening to Joe Anthony and Lou Roney were the best times of my life in the early 70’s listening to KMAC/KISS on my little transistor during the day then evenings and weekends with friends on someone’s solid state portable stereo. Darn thing was heavy but gave us the best sounds Joe and Lou would put out. God bless those guys and thx for the San Antonio memories.

  60. Mona Brown says:

    Hell Joe Anthony kicked ass like no other!!! I am the most picky out of the ordinary sane unique metal Queen of San Antonio from 1980’s ever. You don’t even know!!! Music was my love for life such as HEAVY METAL!!! NOBODY I MEAN NOBODY HAD THE SAME MUSIC TASTE AS I DO EXCEPT JOE ANTHONY!!! IT WAS AMAZING!!! He brought life to me like nothing else. I had my first daughter and found out he passed away. I was so sad. Anyhow I will never regret my daughter’s. I love them more than anything but also have to say Joe Anthony I also love! Everything he played I loved! It’s proven nobody can and won’t ever match that.He was my idol and always will be. Native of San Antonio that will never forget him.

  61. Mona Brown says:

    Miss you Joe Anthony!!! You were the best and always will be!!!

  62. Mona Brown says:

    By the way I was so crazy I wouldn’t ride with any of my friends if they didn’t put 99.5 Kiss on the radio

  63. Donald H. says:

    Me and my high school friend Jack P. would cruise around the high school early in the morning he had a 68 chevelle SS with a 396 Cu In and we listened to Lou and Joe on Kmac & Kiss we couldn’t get Kiss FM in Copperas Cove, Tx so we had to listen to KMAC am it was only on until about 12 Pm first time I ever heard Budgie, Accept, Saxon and many others. Hasn’t been a station or Dj’s like that and probably won’t ever be. This was 1978-79

    • admin says:

      Yep! DJ’s are (literally?) robots these days. Radio has no personality. Those of us who remember when passion was allowed on the airwaves are a lucky breed.

  64. Carlos V says:

    I lived about 4 hours south in McAllen during the late 80’s and had heard the Godfather numerous times while passing through San Antonio. By far, the greatest DJ I ever in metal history. In McAllen, I would spend evenings trying to construct antennas out of wires and hangers for my boom box. And if pointed just right, I could get bits and pieces of his show. Those of you who lived in SA during his time were truly privileged.

  65. Robert c says:

    Mid 70s forward jammed the raxio every night to joes show the entro would come on and there the night went me and my best friend would be out in the garage working on our good ol kawasaki z1s getting stoned maybe sfuffing a new set of smoothbore carbs maybe droppin a set of andrews 3x cams in always making them faster every week to go down to southwest military and take their money fri sat nights lol and we got high as a kite and would roll our bikes down the street about 2 blocks drop em in gear and make a quick test hit then hurry back to the garage put the door down cause someone would call the cops lol this was the good ol days nothing mattered the police technology was poor we got chased several timesbut always got away lol all you had to do is look at the hubcaps back then if the cop car was missing hubcaps you knew he was gonna give you a run for your money any how about joe he hosted a show that was jnpredictable always exviting and we would start on our bikes around 11pm and thanks to joe see the sun come up every morning joe was like no other dj ive ever seen come close to him the godfather was not a show you could turn off once it started you were in it!a bunch of people have tried to be good djs but no ome had the skillset of the godfather you had to be listening to understand that joe was not a show where yougot tired and crashed out he would literally match the music to the weather and whats going on and it fit perfectly like if it had been lracticed and rehursed for 3 months prior he was a go with the flow type of dj that actually was one of us and knew what everyone likes thats how he kept everything going remember it takes talent to recognize talent and he was the best talent ive ever heard todays talent might crack one joke and make you laugh then what??? Once joe got ahold of the mike strap yoyr seatbelts cause your in for another night ride you wont forget i wish i woulda captured it on tape back then because we never know when good times will end but i can say that the gid fathers chapter in my life is by far the best chapter in my life and as for the little saying that history repeats itself well nit in the gid fathers style – nobody will ever match his skillsrt ir talent

  66. Joseph Anthony Yannuzzi says:

    I just came across this article. This is my real name and have gone by Jay my whole life. I never knew of the Godfather until now but feel like I have known him my whole life. I have listened to the sane music he revolutionized from the beginning. I am 40 now and wish I had a chance to meet him since we are most likely related. I can’t wait to research more.

  67. Jeff says:

    I was stationed in San Antonio in the mid 80’s in the Air Force. I loved listening to his shows. He used to play a band that was 5 brothers. I cant remember their name. Wondered if anyone else knew?

  68. David Dominguez says:

    Their was a sad song he would always play on Friday & Saturdays late at night does any one know the band & song I know it’s a long shot but worth a try?

  69. Klaus Prange says:

    Man, I just looked through my old stuff, and found my long-lost KISS-FM tape recordings from 23rd/24th of July ’87 I did when I stayed there back then. That’s 4 C90 tapes of Joe’s show.

    By the way, I’m from Germany, and I just LOVED listening to KISS-FM. Through Joe’s show I also heard about the Anthrax/D.R.I./Suicidal Tendencies/Metal Church gig I then attended on 07/12/87 at the Sunken Gardens Theatre.

    So sad he passed away. Those were great times. Cheers to all of you!

    • admin says:

      Hey Klaus, thanks for reading and posting. I remember being at the Anthrax, Metal Church, DRI gig (but don’t remember Suicidal being on the bill. Great times and tunes, indeed!

  70. Klaus Prange says:

    @admin: You’re right, my memory has played dirty tricks on me, that gig was without Suicidal.

    But I’m one of the lucky ones to have met Mr. Anthony. He even gave me one of his Autographs reading “Klaus, a real rocker”. That was in downtown S.A. ata a record store (don’t remember the name anymore) where Anthrax released the “Indians” maxi, alongside with Meet & Greet AND Joe Anthony as well. Unfortunately I haven’t been able to locate that Autograph amongst all my stuff yet. But I will.

  71. Mane Sierra says:

    Your influence remains strong..

  72. Erin says:

    Hi Dave! What a great blog entry. I found it searching for the 1975 Randy’s Rodeo Rush show, hoping for photos. I was there with a carload of my friends, down front right in front of the stage, which was only about 6″ off the floor at the back of that dingy room. We were young rockers and had never set foot in Randy’s. I remember a really drunk guy was standing in the foyer, reading each signed and framed photo of a country star who had played there, before punching and smashing the glass and moving on to read the next one.

    Geddy Lee was really skinny and looked a little scared of this huge crowd that was crowding up around them. A friend of ours lit up the biggest joint I had ever seen, and a column of weed smoke drifted right up under the stage. It was an incredible show, fueled with the energy of youth and their early raw songs. When they came back next, they sold out two nights in a row at the Municipal Auditorium, I believe. And yep, we were there, too.

    We all loved Rush from listening to Joe Anthony play them incessantly on KISS. It may have still been an AM station on only half the day. Once, he had a playoff between Rush and some other (forgettable) upstart band with a high tenor singer, where he would play one song from each, back and forth, and take calls to vote for the favorite. It was no contest, really. I bought their first LP as soon as it was released.

    There wasn’t much to do in those days in San Antonio but hang out at Northcross Mall, race our cars down 1604 late at night, hang out at San Pedro Drive-in, or go to concerts. So we went to them all. It was the best part of San Antonio in the 1970s. Cheers!

  73. David Aguilera says:

    I worked at KMAC from 1979 to 1981. I left when the stations were sold to a communications company from New York. Does anyone know what happened to Mark Champion?

  74. Robert Mendez says:

    Fuck Rush -You say go ask Geddy Lee. Well in the film Beyond the Lighted Stage – Those fuckers did not mention how Joe Anthony & Lou Roney put up there own money to bring their sorry asses to Randy’s Ballroom or how influential Joe and Lou were in Rush’s early days. But they did mention Cleveland and Kudos to Cleveland for knowing a good thing when they heard it. None the less Rush did go on to become huge and Joe and Lou may be gone but they will never be forgotten. At least not in these neck of the woods. Had to get that of my chest.

    • admin says:

      Regardless of what did or didn’t make the editor’s cut in the movie, I’m certain Rush would be quick to agree they owe a debt of gratitude to Joe Anthony and San Antonio.

      • Robert Mendez says:

        And they have mentioned it at their concerts. Just rubbed me the wrong way that it wasn’t mentioned. Seems quite pivotal to me. This is a great thing you are doing here. I’m very old school when it comes to my hard rock and heavy metal. I sure do miss those days.

  75. Robert Mendez says:

    Hi. Is there a way to post pictures on here. I have an old photo of that Rush ticket at Randy’s Ballroom. On the ticket it says KISS & KMAC’s Joe Anthony & Lou Roney Present RUSH. I think it would be great to add it to the photos you already have. By the way I just so happen to be a heavy metal hard rock DJ. I play a lot of the stuff that Joe & Lou played back in the day. I just did a gig at a fundraiser and I blew those people away. People kept coming up to me and saying wow these takes me back. Here’s a sample of songs played. Point Blank – Penthouse Pauper / KISS – Duece / UFO – Natural Thing / Rush – Bastille Day / Scorpions – Loving You Sunday Morning / Triumph – What’s Another Day Of Rock & Roll / Angel – Tower / The Hounds – Angel On Fire / Face Dancer – Cry Baby / Judas Priest – Beyond The Realms Of Death. It was an awesome day.

  76. Roger Johnson says:

    What a great site!! It’s great to be with folks who were able to hear what I think was THE definitive hard rock/metal on air personality…the late Joe Anthony, on what was, and I’m biased, two of the best radio stations to ever be granted a license, KMAC/KISS. I am unashamedly old school in my musical preferences and just thinking of the old days listening to Joe and Lou on air brings back tons of good memories. I had just graduated high school iin the early ’70’s and remember listening to this guy on KMAC playing hard rock right after Perry Callison wrapped up his fifteen minute farm and ranch report which ran from noon until twelve fifteen. What a wierd segue….listening to what pork bellies were going for and the next thing you year is Bridge of Sighs!!! That was my first exposure to “Joe Anthony In Concert”, his radio show that ran until two p.m. I think I’m correct with the name of the show but never the less I was HOOKED!!! He brought to my ears bands like AC/DC, Rush, Triumph, Widowmaker, April Wine, UFO, Starz, Hawkwind, Robin Trower, Trapeze, Captain Beyond and the list goes on and on…….I was a devoted listener for many years and even today when I hear some music that Joe turned me onto I still think about the times when I was twenty years old, driving down San Pedro smoking a bomber and listening to him educate me on contemporary hard rock and metal. I miss those days and the great radio and personalities we were so lucky to have in our lives. Now I’m an old fart, sad about the state of radio and our kind of music in general but still thankful for the memories and education Joe was responsible. Wherever you are Joe… I hope you have access to a lot of old vinyl and are still carrying the torch for our kind of music. Thank you for what you did for me.

    • admin says:

      Roger, what a great memory! Thanks for sharing. As you can see, you speak for many of us who remember Joe and his influence fondly and forever.

  77. Pablo says:

    This really takes me back to memories of great times. I grew up in NB and graduated in 1977.
    During my high school years and after, listing to the great Joe Anthony & Louis J Roney were a mainstay. Remember when KMAC and KISS were simulcast. Also remember the long list of bands Joe turned me on to. Rush, Legs Diamond, UFO, Pavlov’s Dog, Budgie. One of my first concerts was seeing Mozy at Randy’s Rodeo. Most memories of that night are lost in a haze 🙂 but I do remember a guy sitting inside one of the large speakers at the front of the stage while enjoying some herb. Then he handed it to Buzz Shearman and Buzz took a drag on stage. The cop working the show just smiled and shook his head. RIP & rock on forever Joe (and Buzz).

  78. Pat H. says:

    The great Luis J. lived around the corner in Shenandoah and killer concert after killer concert was the norm. Rhett Forrester was the voice on the absolutely rocking EP Riot Live a 5 song (maybe EP, black cover Red lettering) that Joe played relentlessly. Guitarist Mark Reale actually moved to SA to join up with what was left of the SA version of Slayer in a band called Narita. Sadly Forrester was murdered in Atlanta during a carjacking in 96 and Reale died of Chrohn’s disease in early 2012. Joe A’s influence on hard rock/metal from the mid 70’s thru grunge can’t be overstated. Thankfully he was on a station (owned by an independent, Howard Davis) that was so beyond the norm, that freewheeling will never happen again. Roney and Joe A. actually built the stage and sound system for Rush’s SA debut at Randy’s in “75, crazy.

    • admin says:

      I remember Narita. And yeah, that early Riot stuff was great!

      • Bruce Alan says:

        Oh my gosh this is an incredible page and will continue to read. Long story short always was a fan of Joe Anthony and classic rock. Fast forward to now, I have a Texas and classic country internet radio station in New Braunfels. I have a classic rock show that I do every Tuesday night from 8-10 called Schlep’s Classic Rock Vault. I have had people coming out of the woodwork to get me music, lps etc to get back on the air. 99.5 kiss album, morningstar, budgie, Starz, even getting with former members of too smooth, winterkat and oz knozz to get albums and CDs in my hands for airplay. My friend Mark Wengler just did an interview with Institute of Texas Cutters about Joe and Lou that i hope to air on my show in a few weeks. Would love to hear from anyone that wants to support this show with a good listen. It will definitely bring back some great memories. Anyone can email me at with any comments, requested music concerns, etc.
        Thanks admin for letting me post here.

        • admin says:

          Hey, Schlep
          Thanks for being in touch and for keeping the spirit alive on the New Braunfels airwaves! Lots of great memories through music thanks to Joe, Lou and the countless bands they championed.
          Cheers, 2Fast2Die

  79. James H. says:


  80. Jim Spruill says:

    I lived in San Antonio in the late 70s and Joe Anthony is the greatest DJ that has ever lived. I remember he would do the call letters around midnight And say “it’s 12 o’clock …do you know where your ears are?” He arranged to have my girlfriend, who was a station groupie ,and one of her friends show AC/DC around San Antonio when they came the first time before they played the Armadillo. She said they were a really nice bunch of guys. And Joe and Lou were such cool dudes. I remember seeing Riot at Randy’s rodeo over on Bandera,And I remember Fitzwillies back when the UTSA campus was way the hell out of town. I remember seeing Krokus there and does anybody remember Oz Knozz or Heyoka? Those were some of the best days weren’t they people? I love all y’all down there in San Antonio. I’ve still got a few brothers down there …y’all rock on! Thanks for providing the space to let me do a little reminiscing. peace out

    • admin says:

      Great story, Jim. Thanks for sharing. And, yes, I remember Oz Knozz, Heyoka (and Winterkat, Heather Leather, etc.) It was a great time to be a metal head in San Antonio.

  81. ETF says:

    Love the piece Jim, I remember coming here in 1976, I was about 9 months in the service (airforce). I was brought up in the San Fransico Bay Area were music was everything, ESPECIALLY rock. I was kind of missing the music from there which was really hot around early to mid 70’s . But one night I turned on the radio here, think it was KMAC and I heard Joe .I think the first song I heard him play was from Triumph..I thought ok I found a station. I was stationed here for 3 years Joe Anthony, Kiss/KMAC was all we listened to..And when I say WE I mean our whole dormitory. .I for one never left here, S.A. is my home now and for the last 40 years. Alot of my friends at that time moved away but I know the one thing they will always remember about san antonio is Joe Anthony and KISS 99.5 . So thankyou GODFATHER…I know he’s rock’n with the GODZ .Rock On !

    • admin says:

      Thanks, man. I wrote the piece (Dave) out of respect for a deejay who shaped my record collection and introduced me to so much great music. Thanks for reading and sharing your story. Clearly, Joe had a massive influence.

  82. Kevin van alen says:

    Wow, what can I say. Took Joe a little for granted . I knew I was in a special place at the time he was on the air. He knew what San Antonio wanted, just thought it would go on forever ,Boy was I ever wrong ! What I can’t believe is no one has tried to fill at least one of his shoes. Anybody interested ? Maybe Rick Sanford ? Don’t forget The Hunt either ! R.I.P. GODFATHER.

    • admin says:

      Radio is such a different beast than it was back then. Personality and freedom to introduce new/favorite bands is strictly prohibited.Joe was among the last of the mavericks. We were lucky to have him.

  83. Lloyd Clegg says:

    I used to listen to Lou Roney and Joe Anthony back in the 70’s. They used to play music from bands that were not heard on other station formats. Fantastic music of the times. Led Zeppelin before their first album was release in the states, Rory Gallagher, Blue Oyster Cult just to name a few.

    • admin says:

      Not sure about that. Zep’s first album was released in 1969 if I recall. Not sure if that timeframe aligns with Rooney and Joe, but there’s no question they introduced a lot of great music in their time.

  84. Dae Dae Cardoza Torres says:

    MAY SAN ANTONIO, TEJAS BE REINFUSED WITH THE TRUE SPIRIT OF TRUE rOc K nROOl once again and forever be worthy of the title “The Heavy Metal Capital of the World”
    Let uspray for the return of _____ (your call).

    graciasamores antonioeluis,


  85. David Hooge says:

    After my stint in the USAF out west I returned home to SA in 1977 and it didn’t take me long to discover KMAC on my AM radio. I remember when I was a kid and KMAC used to air the Catholic Rosary in the evening and suddenly I find Joe Anthony cranking out some kick ass rock and roll. He had one song that had a “nautical” slant to it that he played quite often that I never figured out who the artist was. Anyone remember a song like that? I ;listened to a lot of KMAC all through 1978. Wow… that was another lifetime ago!

    • admin says:

      Hey, David. Thanks for reading and posting. Is the “nautical” song you mention, by chance, “Sirens” by Savatage? That’s the first one that comes to mind.