Radio Personality and Producer Calls Basking Ridge Home
Al Dukes familiar to listeners of 'Boomer and Carton' show on WFAN.
A prominent figure within the world of radio is someone you might run into in Basking Ridge, but perhaps someone you won't see at a late movie in local theaters.
Al Dukes is the brain and voice behind the "Boomer and Carton in the Morning" sports radio show, starring former NFL quarterback Boomer Esiason and co-host Craig Carton, on 660 WFAN-AM. Dukes said he moved to Basking Ridge nearly three years ago.
Dukes has become famous and infamous for his slightly off-key, but funny sports-themed song parodies played on the show on CBS radio. The "Boomer and Carton in the Morning" show airs Monday through Friday from 6 to 10 a.m.
"I know I can't sing, but I think that's part of the charm," Dukes said in an interview with Basking Ridge Patch.
Within the past three years, Dukes has written and sung a myriad of sports song parodies inspired by the top stories in the country at the time. Dukes is always on his toes looking for the next story to talk about on the air and to, of course, sing about.
One of Duke's favorite songs is "Beat Tom Brady" (parodied to Tom Jones' "She's a Lady"), which he released to the world in September. Another favorite gem of Dukes' is his "I Wanna Lick My Hands" (parodied to The Beatles "I Wanna Hold Your Hand") about Mets pitcher Mike Pelfrey who frequently licks his hands while he's on the mound.
Growing up listening to "The Howard Stern Show," Dukes knew he wanted to be in radio.
"I always liked the behind-the-scenes guys that went on the air every once in a while, so that's why I chose producing, you get to be on the air without all of the pressure of carrying the show," he explained.
Dukes, 41, has fulfilled his dream of becoming a producer. He has worked full-time in radio for 16 years and has been affiliated with CBS radio for nine years.
Dukes' career in radio began in 1991 at a station in Elizabeth. He interned at 1530 WJDM-AM, an oldies station at the time, and later ran the audio board for the DJs. Since then, Dukes has gone on to produce a variety of successful radio shows over the years.
"I worked in sports talk in Tampa with 'The Fabulous Sports Babe.' I worked with Ron & Fez at WNEW, Booker at K-Rock, David Lee Roth and then Opie and Anthony at 92.3, and now Boomer & Carton at WFAN," he said.
"Producing is a demanding job, but it's a lot of fun," Dukes said. "It kind of has to become part of your life."
The one aspect of the job that Dukes is not so thrilled about? The early wake-up call. Dukes' alarm rings during the week at 2:50 a.m.
"Like a child, I hate going to sleep early," Dukes said. "So, that means I normally only get about five hours a night, and then I'm a lot of fun on Friday nights when I pass out in the movie theater or when I want to go to dinner at 5:30 p.m."
You can listen to the "Boomer and Carton in the Morning" show on WFAN's website or watch it on the MSG Network.