Tearson: Alive and swell

DJ Michael Tearson's trippy voice is off the Philly airwaves, but he's not off the radio. Or the radar.

"I’m on the website Radio That Doesn't Suck, and on Sirius XM," says Tearson, whose once-weekly broadcast on WMGK-FM got canned earlier this week.

Tearson, 64, of Westmont, NJ has been synonymous with Philadelphia FM rock for decades (see the 2011 column I wrote about him here). He spun records on stations including WXPN, WDAS, and WMMR in those halcyon vinyl days when FM DJs selected and segued a wide mix of music, exposing listeners to fresh sounds.

But the era mythologized in the 1978 movie FM has been over for nearly 30 years, Tearson says, citing the advent of computer-selected in 1985 as the end of the DJ's role as a "curator."

"That kind of radio still lives in what I do on the website, and on Sirius," he says.

Tearson acknowledges that losing the 'MGK gig hurt. But the outpouring of support on Facebook "was an incredibly wonderful cyber-hug," he says.