After helping Gary Burbank create the Play It Forward nonprofit assisting local musicians years ago, former WUBE-FM DJ Bill Whyte returns Friday to help raise funds with a concert at Newport’s Southgate House Revival.
Whyte performs with his “Hits & Grins” trio of songwriters, Steve Dean and Victoria Venier. They’ll play songs recorded by George Strait, Alabama, Reba McEntire, Ray Stevens, Take Six and others.
“It’s my first time playing back in the Cincinnati area in a long time, so I'm looking very forward to seeing and playing from some old friends,” says Whyte, based in Nashville.
Whyte, who did two stints on B105 (1883-92; 2003-08), keeps busy in Nashville by writing songs in a Music Row office; writing radio comedy bits for New York-based United Stations; and singing and playing guitar.
He also plays music on the radio, working part-time at Nashville’s legendary WSM-AM, home of the “Grand Ole Opry.” Read more about him on his Bill Whyte Comedy website.
Whyte was a founding board member of Burbank’s non-profit formed to raise money for local musicians in need. “My big contribution there was coming up with the name ‘Play It Forward,’” he says.
“This is a true songwriter’s show,” says Whyte, who was inducted into the Country Radio Broadcast Hall of Fame in 2012 and won the CMA (Country Music Association) “Air Personality of the Year” award while at WUBE-FM in 1991.
Whyte will play songs recorded by Stevens, Brady Seals, Cledus T. Judd, Joe Nichols and Linda Davis. Dean has penned hits for Alabama, Strait, McEntire, Rodney Atkins and others. Venier contributed a song for the Grammy-nominated album by the gospel group Take Six.
Doors open at 7 p.m. Friday at the Southgate House Revival, 116 E. Sixth St., Newport. Singer Amy Sailor opens the show. Tickets are $28 at the door. Proceeds benefit Play It Forward.