|Buzzy Donahue ca. 1965 and 2016. Her hair's grown a bit.|
I hang out on a lively Facebook group called "San Francisco Remembered" where recently there were some musings about a North Beach institution from the Beat days onward, Clown Alley, noted for peerless charcoal grilled burgers and after hours celebrity crushes. (I once found myself waiting in line for a proletarian priced burger between Flip Wilson and Ahmad Jamal.) For nostalgia's sake, I decided to fish some snapshots taken at Clown Alley 50+ years ago from a shoebox for posting to the group. Among the ones I posted was of a woman in her late teens with a Clown Alley cheeseburger in her hand. There was no notation on the photo, but her identity was etched in my mind, because her girl companion had wasted no time in informing me that she was Buzzy Donahue, daughter of "Big Daddy" Tom Donahue. On the spot I decided I needed to immortalize her and the burger.
Wikipedia, or here or here.
I was a little hesitant about posting the picture of Buzzy Donahue. In it she is looking into the camera with a displeased mien, somewhere between teen sullenness and an ur-"Don't bother me, I'm eating" take. Would she be pissed at the posting of the image if she saw it? Au contraire! She saw it, and not only did she not lecture me, she reposted the image on her own Facebook page and "Friended" me. Thanks to her jumping into my news stream, I found out she now hosts a weekly broadcast "The Buzzy Donahue Show" on KPTZ Public Radio in Port Townsend WA, just in time for me to hook into it. I found it a lovely and (mostly) soothing mix of Hawaiian (no, not Aloha Oe), jazz, folk, soft rock, and, for good measure, Buffalo Springfield's anthem for our time (and yours!), For What it's Worth. (Hey, how about a Phil Ochs cut next time, Buzzy?)
Check out Buzzy's sweet voice and sweeter playlists, Fridays from 9:30 to 11:00 on KPTZ-FM.
Port freaking Townsend, Washington, you say?
I once saw a poster on a phone pole about an upcoming "Psychic Fair" in San Francisco, upon which someone had scrawled "You don't have to be there to attend." It's 2018, dude, and so it is with radio. You don't need to be there physically or culturally to listen. For me, it was as simple as "Hey Google, Play KPTZ radio." If Siri or Alexa don't understand that, fire them and stream Buzzy live from KPTZ's website.
And throw her a posie. It's lonely in a small market FM radio station broadcast booth.