If the special feature is starting to look like the Pacific Drive In Theatre hour there’s good reason….
So tonight ahead of schedule, we have the multi-faceted Ira Cook. Talent talent talent- it always amazes when people like Ira hold it ace high. Hailing from Duluth MN, he studied at Stanford, graduating with a medical degree. Mr. Cook takes a draw from the deck and decides to move to Los Angeles. There he starts at KMTR as a record librarian and part time announcer. He served his country when WWII called collect, fighting in the Battle of the Bulge also serving as an Armed Forces Radio announcer, later again into the 1960s. Because of his interest in broadcasting, he got back into commercial radio right after the war. 1949 began a long 16 year career at KMPC which took him through the heady days of the 1950’s music era.
In 1957 when the DJ pay for play scandal erupted Ira made the following comment, “It’s safer than stealing, more legal than gambling, easier than loafing, and it beats working!” Although a great comment Ira’s actions are that of a working man. He was a big promoter of Hawaiian music and brought Don Ho over to the mainland USA.
He also was doing a show called “Lunch with the Stars”, and wrote a book called “Cook with the Stars”. He composed music and co-wrote songs. As an actor he had bits in movies and on television shows.
Ira’s statement and reason for retirement in the 1980s “The music really turned bad” is classic. Let’s go further back to check the virtues of this March 23 to April 5th 1955 lyrical lineup, another Pacific Drive In Theatre pre show and intermission recording.