A familiar voice from central Alberta radio stations has written an autobiography to chronicle the story of his career.
Go With Me On This is a book written by Troy “Stevens” Schaab, who founded Sunny 94 in Lacombe and Kraze 101.3 in Red Deer with his wife Sonia Sawyer-Schaab.
“I wanted to put my story on paper in hopes of giving my mom and dad a copy at Christmastime. That was the big reason I wrote the book,” said Schaab.
“If my great-grandkids can read about their great-grandfather and find out about where they came from, then that’s a real bonus for me.”
The married couple had moved to Red Deer in 1996 – just one month before their wedding. A year later, Schaab was working as an on-air personality at a local radio station.
“I feel like I wasn’t very strong as a radio announcer. I tried real hard and I always wanted to get to that major market, whether it was a place like Vancouver or Calgary,” he said.
“By the time 2004 rolled around, the writing was on the wall that I wasn’t talented enough. I didn’t have a big enough voice – I didn’t have what it took to make it to the big leagues. But I knew I had more to offer to the radio broadcasting industry and I wanted more for myself.”
The married couple decided to launch a radio station of their own. It took two years for that dream to become a reality.
“It was a pretty stressful time when we launched Sunny 94,” he said, adding he had parted with ways with his previous job at another radio station.
“We were down to one paycheque between my wife and I, and we had a family. There were definitely some stressful times until we were able to launch the station.”
On June 28, 2006, the station was officially launched with the song Here Comes the Sun by The Beatles.
“From the second that button was pushed, right up until we walked out of that radio station one last time in February 2016, it was constantly on our minds,” Schaab said.
“There was a lot of pressure, but it was an extremely fun experience. We had such a good team – that’s probably what I remember most about the entire venture.”
In 2009, the couple opened up Kraze 101.3 in Red Deer. They sold the stations in 2016 and now live in Calgary. But Schaab said he looks back fondly on their years in central Alberta
“I couldn’t have picked a better community than Lacombe to launch a radio company. Everyone was so supportive. We miss them,” he said.
For more information or to purchase a copy of the book, visit www.gowithmeonthis.ca.