5 Questions with… Joe Cicero

Written by on March 5, 2021

What brought you to hosting a show on WICN? Why do you love being on the air?

I am a longtime listener of WICN. I had recently retired from teaching high school Biology and was helping on the family farm in southern Illinois when I got a call from my cousin Mauro DePasquale, asking if I was interested in a job promoting jazz–the job was hosting the Jazz Highway. Mauro thought I would do well because of the knowledge and passion I have for the music, which I got from my father. I had no experience in radio, but I had been around jazz my whole life. I am so grateful to have the opportunity to share this great music with the listeners of WICN.

What is your favorite WICN memory?

My favorite memory of WICN is listening to the station in my parent’s kitchen…shows like the ones hosted by Joe Zupan, Brian Barlow and so many more past and present hosts on WICN.

FILL IN THE BLANK: The best concert I ever saw was ______________?

I can’t answer this question! I have been attending live shows my whole life. Jazz, Blues, Rock… I can’t determine which one was best. I have seen Sinatra, Basie, Herman, Puente, Mann, and most of the Marsalis family, to name a few from the jazz world. I have also seen greats like B.B. King, Richard Thompson, Santana, Stevie Ray Vaughan…I could go on all day.

Many listeners don’t know that the majority of our hosts are volunteers that do this out of a personal passion. What do you/did you do professionally off the air?

I am a retired Biology teacher. I play local gigs as a singer and guitar player, and (pre-COVID) I also give guitar lessons.

Who are your favorite artists and/or albums of all time?

This is another hard question! Sinatra, Swinging Affair; Richard Thompson, Rumor and Sigh; the first John Prine album; The Allman Brothers Band, Live at the Fillmore; Little Feat, Waiting for Columbus, Cal Tjader, Latin Beat. I could go on and on…


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