One year ago at the prodding of my daughter Jacqui Kramer, a marketing manager in Seattle, I decided to do two things: one write a blog/site called The Don Rocks; and two, a dedicated The Don Rocks Facebook page, both dedicated to the Golden Age of Rock and Roll from the ’50s until 1980.
Like many ideas both of the TDR projects were intended to be one thing and turned into something quite different. We originally thought the site/blog would be devoted to the histories of the Radio and Records businesses, with a primary audience of former Disc Jockeys and Record Business folks. Any “civilians” that would have an interest in the material would also be welcome. In fact, one of the first features on the blog was author Bob Shannon interviewing prominent former Radio and Records veterans. Although Bob got some great stuff, it didn’t seem to resonate with the readership, so we dropped it.
I wrote some rather long-form articles on some of my adventures in both mediums for the blog/site, and once again the response was less than expected. However, I did some shorter pieces and found video of the original artists performing their hits, and it started to feel right. As time went on I recruited some other writers, like John Hale who had a career in radio and was already doing posts about the music and artists of the Golden Days of Rock and Roll on his Facebook page.
Meanwhile, I was using The Don Rocks Facebook page to drive traffic to the blog/site, and I began to post short pieces about some of the artists and videos on that page. Jacqui had also provided me with a Twitter account with the handle: @TheRealDonRocks, and I added that to every FB post that I did. At first we had a handful of viewers, but soon the TDR Facebook page began to draw more folks, and Twitter gained Followers. Something was going on and I reconsidered our mission. The more great old Music videos I added, the more new people were visiting the page and leaving comments.
It was obvious that the TDR Facebook page was acting like a daily blog, and the blog/site webpage had become a growing history of the Golden Age of Rock and Roll: a resource for those interested in the music artists and life styles back in the day, along with first person memories of both the music and artists. Since we’ve been adding new material to the website on an almost daily basis, the amount of content has grown incrementally, creating a real resource for those interested in that time.
So here we are, with one year under our belts and a steadily growing readership, especially for the daily TDR Facebook page, which to my amazement has expanded with folks far and wide on the planet, some posts reaching several thousand. That’s been the hardest thing for me to get my head around–the Global reach of the Internet. Some of the folks are in countries that speak different languages, but I guess the music is the international language.
It couldn’t have been done without the efforts of several other folks, some behind the scenes like Scott Johnson and Eye Lipson who pass on stories and videos on a regular basis: others like John Hale and Doug Christian who write and send stories they’ve written about their own experiences. Most of all, without my daughter Jacqui’s acting as Site Manager and Editor there is no way I could have done this. But we are entering our second year on a roll, so as The Don would say: Rock On!
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