Based on an illegally recorded phone conversation made by the author many years ago (turns out it was both a state and a federal crime), Radio Activity is a sordid little tale of life, death, and blackmail set in the world of FM rock radio.
Rick Shannon is an unemployed FM rock DJ considering a mid-life change in careers. But just as he begins selling off his record collection, a job offer comes from a small station in Mississippi, where a DJ recently stopped showing up for work.
After discovering an audio tape that might explain the fate of the missing DJ, Rick decides to look into the matter. Sensing a new career path, he assumes another identity: Buddy Miles, PI, naming himself after the one-time drummer for Jimi Hendrix's Band of Gypsys.
The result is a wickedly funny amateur investigation that turns up blackmail, murder, arson, and a major FCC violation. The suspects literally come out of the woods, ranging from a divorce who rents construction equipment to a former local beauty pageant queen (Miss Tire & Auto Parts) to the station's general manager and th president of a local personal finance company (who has peculiar ideas about collateral).
This smart, satiric, southern romp of a novel draws heavily from the author's own experience as a Mississippi-born FM rock radio DJ from the 1970s. An offbeat and hilarious whodunit that redefines the meaning of Classic Rock.
Bill Fitzhugh worked at several FM rock radio stations in the 1970s and 1980s. Born and raised in Jackson, Mississippi, he prefers The Band, Little Feat, and Van Morrision to Black Sabbath, Iron Butterfly, and Uriah Heep.
Since 2005, Fitzhugh has been the writer and host of "Fitzhugh's All Hand Mixed Vinyl" on Sirius-XM's Deep Tracks channel. In fact, this book is the reason he has the gig. The former program director, the late, great, George Taylor Morris, read Radio Activity and declared it the best book he'd ever read about FM rock radio. One thing led to another and eventually to the show on Deep Tracks. Fitzhugh is one of only three outside show hosts; the other two being Tom Petty and Bob Dylan. For more on the show along with the set lists and show commentaries, visit www.billfitzhugh.com.
The author of eight comic novels, Fitzhugh lives in Los Angeles with his wife and his record collection.