Wednesday, June 3, 2009
FLASHBACK:THE GEATOR WITH THE HEATER- PHILLY ROCK JOCK ROYALTY-RARE CLIPS OF JERRY BLAVAT ON PHILA. TELEVISION - CIRCA 1966
THE BIG BOSS WITH THE BIG, HOT SAUCE- THE TEENAGE LEADER- THE GEATOR WITH THE HEATER
Jerry Blavat is a Philadelphia, Rock Radio phenomenon, a show biz survivor and a force of nature. Born to an Italian Mother and a Jewish Father in blue collar, rowhouse, South Philly, he was an adolescent dancer on AMERICAN BANDSTAND when it was a local show on Philadelphia's WFIL-TV ( now WPVI 6ABC) and before Dick Clark was named host of the teenage dance party.
He came into his own as a broadcaster in the late 1950's on WCAM radio, the renegade R&B station that was owned by the City of Camden , New Jersey and was located in city hall. Against formidable competition, like the late Hy Lit on WIBG, the market's blowtorch, Top 40 station, the self anointed Geator (morphed from Gator ) cultivated a large, loyal and lasting audience, to whom he referred as Yon Teens ( and are now dubbed Yon and Beyond Teens), that has stayed with him for five decades.
The Geator's greatest foray into video came in the mid-1960's when WCAU-TV, then Philadelphia's CBS Owned & Operated Station, customized a weekly, nationally syndicated, teen dance show , called THE DISCOPHONIC SCENE ,to Blavat's high energy, high profile, talents.
After two years, WFIL-TV lured Blavat , quite literally, across the street ( even now , the two stations sit face to face on Philadelphia's City Line Avenue). There, his weekly, teen, dance-fest evolved into JERRY'S PLACE, a daily talkshow with live musical performance, aimed at a young demo.
To this day, The Geator rocks local radio on his own station, WPGR- GEATOR GOLD RADIO, and emcees dance parties at clubs across our region.He always signs-off with his signature salutation:
"Keep on rockin'...'cause you only rock once!"
Below is a clip showcasing the Geator's television history in our market, from a film by Ben Vaughn that is posted on You Tube. Enjoy!!!!