Monday, January 27, 2014

Houston LGBT Radio Icon Jimmy Carper Passes Away

I posted last year about March 10 being declared by Mayor Annise Parker as Jimmy Carper Day. 

Jimmy is a radio legend and one of the beloved iconic figures in our Houston GLBT community. 
I enjoyed the time I spent sitting next to this legendary broadcaster from November 1999 to September 2001 and being able to fulfill a dream of actually being on the Houston radio airwaves.

Having a 100,000 watt FM radio platform to say what was on my mind within FCC regulations at the time was pretty cool and heady stuff, especially in the late 90's-early 2k's when not a whole lot of Black trans people here in Houston or anywhere else in the country for that matter had that history making opportunity.

Jimmy Carper on his 'After Hours' show was practicing intersectionality and inclusion during a time when it wasn't cool in some quarters of this community to do and practice that value, and for that we in Houston owe you many thanks..

When I moved from Houston , Jimmy and the gang at KPFT-FM were some of the many people I missed.  I also discovered when I was in Oakland for Creating Change 1999 just how loved and respected he was in the LGBT  radio world when I attended a Pacifica Radio panel discussion during that event.  When the panelists discovered at the conclusion of it I was from Houston and co-hosting a show with him at KPFT-FM, I wasn't allowed to leave until I assured them I would pass on their greetings and love to him when I returned home.

So it's highly ironic and sad to me that as we are gearing up to have Creating Change here in Houston, that I heard the sad news that Jimmy Carper passed away peacefully about 12:26 AM CST this morning after a long illness.  

He'd crossed my mind Thursday and I was wondering how he was doing.   Well, now I know..  The details are still to be worked out concerning a memorial service, but when I find out, I'll pass them on.  

This was the comment I posted on his Facebook page. 
Jimmy, thanks for giving me and other people in the trans community a voice at a time when we had precious few outlets to do so. The co-host time I spent at your side from November 1999 to September 2001 still ranks as some of the happiest moments of my life.

You are with the angels now, and I and everyone else whose lives you touched who tuned into 'Queer Radio With Attitude' will miss you.

Jimmy CarperAccording to the After Hours Facebook page, this Saturday's After Hours will be a tribute one.

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Our show this Saturday night will be in tribute to him, three hours of stories, memories, jokes and the music that Jimmy loved so much. The doors are open at the station 419 Lovett Blvd for those who wish to share with us in person. Our phone lines will be open as well to join in the show at 713-526-KPFT (5738). We will also share emails sent to afterhours@kpft.org and any postings to our Facebook page as well. The show is Saturday night/Sunday morning Midnight Central time to 3 AM. Please join us for tribute to our friend.

Plans for a public memorial are in the works and will be announced soon. Check the After Hours Facebook or listen in for details as released. The entire crew of After Hours thank everyone for the love and support sent to Jimmy in the past weeks and we look forward to continuing serving the community for him.


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Jimmy Carper was a beacon of hope and a lifeline to many Houston area BTLG kids and adults who tuned into 'After Hours'.  His voice and the voices of his co-hosts and guests on 90.1 FM assured his listeners that they weren't alone and gave them the courage to be out and proud about who they are.  

And with every broadcast, Jimmy Carper helped us build a better Houston TBLG community..   

Rest in power and in peace Jimmy

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