(born June 6
), a Top 40 Music radio disc jockey
who was a precursor to the shock jocks
of the 1990s, is known for his world-weary sarcastic style, "Klunk letter of the day," and darkly humorous "Animal Stories" and "Cheap Trashy Show Biz."
Born in Quasqueton, Iowa
as Larry Blankenburg, he later changed his last name to that of his football idol, Johnny Lujack
. He attended the College of Idaho
, Washington State University
and was a radio disc jockey
starting in 1958 at KCID
. He subsequently worked at several other radio stations
, including KJR in Seattle, but is best known for his antics on Chicago AM radio
Though he retired in 1987, shortly after his son John from his first marriage died in an accident, Larry began working again in May 2000 for then-WUBT in Chicago via remote ISDN link from a New Mexico recording studio. He was teamed up with Matt McCann who was based in the Chicago studio. The ratings for the show out-paced the rest of the radio station. In 1997 he had moved from Palatine to the outskirts of Santa Fe, where he plays golf and landscapes. Lujack was inducted into the Illinois Broadcasters Association's Hall of Fame in June 2002.
In 2003, he re-teamed with his Animal Stories partner Tommy Edwards (Little Tommy) on RealOldies, WRLL 1690 AM in Chicago, to broadcast his signature features on week day mornings. On August 16, 2006, Lujack was fired along with the entire WRLL on-air staff as it was announced the "Real Oldies" format would cease on September 17, 2006. On November 6, 2004, he was inducted into the Radio Hall of Fame. On April 15, 2008 Larry Lujack was inducted into the National Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame during their annual convention in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Lujack is married to Judith (Jude) his second wife, and has two surviving children Anthony Lujack and Linda Lujack-Shirley, as well as a step-son Taber Seguin
Also known as
- Lawrence of Chicago
- Uncle Lar
- Ol' Uncle Lar
- King of the Corn Belt
Superjock: The Loud, Frantic, Nonstop World of a Rock Radio DJ
with Daniel A. Jedlicka
NTC/Contemporary Publishing (October 1975) ISBN 0-8092-8302-6 SKU 199692172
- KCID, Caldwell, ID, 1958
- KGEM, Boise, ID
- KNEW, Spokane, WA
- KRPL, Moscow, ID
- KFXM, San Bernardino, CA
- KJRB (previously KNEW) Spokane, WA 1962- 1964 evenings
- KJR, Seattle, WA, April 1964 - September 1966
- WMEX, Boston, MA, September 1966 to December 1966 as Johnny Lujack
- WCFL, Chicago, IL, 1967 (Four months, all-nights)
- WLS, Chicago, IL, August 1967 - July 1972 (Afternoons, then mornings)
- WCFL, Chicago, IL, July 3, 1972 - March 16, 1976 (Afternoons)
- WLS, Chicago, IL, September 16, 1976 - August 28, 1987 (Mornings, then in 1985, afternoons)
- WLS continued to pay Mr. Lujack for five years after his departure to keep him from competing with them in markets where ABC had local radio outlets; in effect, a forced retirement.
- WUBT, Chicago, IL, May 25, 2000 - January 10, 2001
- WRLL, Chicago, IL, Oct. 8, 2003 - August 15, 2006
- Scott Childers' The History of WLS Radio The Rock of Chicago, the 1980s. Read about Lujack in the context of WLS history.
- Real Oldies 1690 AM WRLL. Through Sept. 17, 2006, hear an automated version of the station where Lujack and Tommy Edwards (Little Tommy of Animal Stories) hosted mornings from October 2003 through August 15, 2006.
- Animal Stories CDs. Sells 5 Animal Stories albums: the 3 original ones from WLS, and 2 from Real Oldies 1690 WRLL.