Captain Carrot at Sac Music Fest
June 14, 2015 by Alex Cosper

The Sacramento Music Festival was an excellent experience for me because I got to hang with some radio friends like Tony Cox from the legendary KROY and Cary Nosler from the legendary KZAP. I drove all the way from San Diego on Saturday, May 23, to do some announcing for Tony, who was in charge of MCs. Cary was there for the same reason and introduced Mick Martin & The Blues Rockers.

When we had some time Cary and I walked around the event to try to find a place where we could do an interview without a lot of background noise. I used my small pocket camcorder for the interview. We talked about Cary's career in radio and doing syndicated health and nutrition tips. He even had his own national TV show on CBS in the late seventies called PM Magazine. What is profound to me about Cary Nosler is that he has been able to deliver his good messages about health through a medium that is usually more focused on what's best for sponsors than what's best for the public.

KZAP was different than typical commercial radio in its early years. For its first decade, starting in 1968, it was a freeform station, meaning jocks could play whatever they wanted. Cary, one of the original KZAP jocks, was more into talking about health food, which is how he got his nickname Captain Carrot. Each jock was allowed to bring their own unique personality to the station.

It was quite a pleasure talking with Cary. The last time we talked had been a decade earlier when I interviewed him on the phone for my report on "The Legend of KZAP." It was a relaxing and informative conversation that touched on how the organic movement started back in the sixties with people that relied more on intuition than research. It was a time when people began to think about getting back to nature and things that are real. As I told Cary, it must feel good to have been right, now that the organic food revolution is underway as a $36 billion dollar industry.

"Almost overnight things changed in the way people related to each other, the kind of social movements that were going on," says Cary in the interview about KZAP's early era. "For me it was a time of exploration and it just suited me fine because I was on that search. I was on a quest, you know, to try to figure out who I was, where I was, where I was going, why I was doing what I was doing ... To me it was the ambiance ... it was the backdrop to a movement."

The following week Cary was one of the presenters, along with original KZAP Music Director Jeff Hughson, at a KZAP discussion event in Downtown Sacramento. Interestingly, a month later surprising news spread that KZAP is returning to town on a low power FM frequency on July 4. Below is a picture of me, Mick Martin and Cary Nosler just before Mick's band took the Freeway Gardens stage, delivering high energy blues that got the crowd jumping.

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