Tag Archives: 1984

McCann, Walton & Johnson On-Air At Q93-WQUE, 1984

Times-Picayune Pic  featuring WQUE Radio’s new hires – Walton & Johnson … oh, and that Mike McCann dude (Airlift proprietor Micheal Ziants ) during the radio days/daze)

The world sure was a different place in 1984.

Ronald Reagan sat in the White House, America was watching ‘Cosby’ & ‘Family Ties’ on cathode ray tubes, Wendy’s was asking “Where’s the Beef?” …

Videotape & VCRs were state of the art,  ‘Romancing the Stone’ was huge at the box office, Los Angeles hosted the Olympic Games, the NFL had competition with the USFL – and Cut Off, LA native Bobby Hebert was QB for it’s Michigan Panthers …

Closer to home, ‘Dutch’ Morial reigned as Mayor of New Orleans, K&B Drugstores were on every corner, Maison Blanche still sat on Canal Street … and the Crescent City opened it’s doors and welcomed the world with the 1984 World’s Fair!

And the day it opened – May 12th, 1984 – yours truly, as Mike McCann, was wrapping up my first year on Q-93 as afternoon air personality.


My weekend gig was doing mid-days on-air every Saturday and, as fate would have it, the day the World’s Fair was unveiled, I was doing the duty – with Walton & Johnson as co-stars.  


John & Steve had a remote broadcast on this Saturday from the remodeled Maison Blanche department store on Canal Street – and dropped in from time to time on the broadcast.  Oh boy! 

Hard to believe that this aircheck is now thirty-three years old! Although the station positioning statement  “30 minutes of non-stop music IN STEREO!” is for sure a giveaway.

And the music?  Cindy Lauper, Van Halen,  Rod Stewart, Culture Club, Madonna …and Prince Rogers Nelson danced in the ‘Purple Rain’.

Give a listen to New Orleans radio in 1984 – in this newly unearthed, never-before-heard gem.  It’s WQUE-FM broadcasting from the top of the Tidewater Place building in the 1400 block of Canal Street on May 12th, 1984 – LIVE with Mike McCann —-

Man, it was so hard to find good part-time help in those days. 🙂


a full-page ad in Sunday’s Times-Picayune promoting WQUE’s Mike McCann


Interestingly – and not so coincidentally – 1984 was also the year that I decided to prepare my exit from the radio days and create Airlift Productions!  As to Walton & Johnson?  Well, John & Steve are still today in 2017 plying their trade in syndication on some of America’s finest radio stations…mgz




MikeChurchKingDudeSiriusRadio“When I need BIG ‘I-know-that-guy’s-voice!’ sound for any production I am working on, the first call I make is to Airlift Mike.  Micheal’s penetrating vocals and second-to-none production quality give my movie & audio feature projects the instant respectability they need.   If you want to sound like a pro, meaning no one gives a second thought to your audio because it is so well executed, you want to call Airlift!”

MIKE CHURCH, World-Famous Sirius/XM Talk Show Host, Founding Father Film Maker, Writer & Producer of ‘The Spirit of ’76’ and ‘The Road to Independence’ & Creator of the Veritas Network/Crusade Channel





Airlift Productions ~ Audio Alchemy & Digital Magic from NOLA since 1984!

One Angel Down … Airlift Productions Still Blue

Micheal Ziants aka Mike McCann, Q-93, ready to board this Blue Angel SkyHawk jet, Belle Chasse, LA – 1984

It’s all over the news this April 2017 week in New Orleans. The Navy’s Blue Angels return, after a six year hiatus, to Belle Chasse for another air show. Along with all the attendant stories of G-force, incredible speeds, and death-defying stunts.

And watching the news coverage I couldn’t help but flashback to my radio days, (cue the harp music interlude) ~ it was the spring of 1984, Belle Chasse Naval Air Base.  As Q-93 Radio afternoon air personality Mike McCann, I was invited to take part in promoting the upcoming airshow at the base.

Uh-oh, no turning back now …. Airlift Mike preparing to be Air-borne!

This proved to be one of the more remarkable days of my entire life. Picture yourself, if you can, hurtling through the skies over the Gulf of Mexico at over 500 mph UPSIDE down in the cockpit of an A-4 Skyhawk jet!

My co-pilot? Lieutenant Commander Mike Gershon. Square-jawed, clear-eyed, Bond-like, heroic, courageous, fearless… and dead way before his time.  Little did either of us realize the day we flew together that the very next year at an airshow in Niagara Falls he would make history.

Mike Gershon became one of the few Blue Angels to ever perish in action. The crash was fiery, frightening and unforgettable.  And today, courtesy of the you tube crowd, you can bear witness to the tragedy – as well as meet Mike & his widow, Sherri, here …


Lieutenant Commander Gershon – together with his #7 jet pictured – now belong to the ages. But today, I’d just like to say…’ Mike, thanks ever so for this incredible memory, sir. For the laughs, jokes, stories, and this fantastically joyous ride-of-a-lifetime!’

 And for the 21st century reminder that not all heroes die in battle. 


MikeGershonAndMichealZiantsBlueAngels 1984
Airlift Productions’ Micheal Ziants with Lt. Cmdr. Mike Gershon ~ Belle Chasse Naval Base, LA – 1984


“My experience with Airlift Productions was top notch from the start. My company is based in Los Angeles and I had a client that needed to do a last minute VO session in New Orleans. Micheal was incredibly knowledgeable and accommodating, not to mention a blast to work with! Our session turned out beautifully.” 

– Lizz Rantze,  Executive Producer, Rantze + Raves Productions, Los Angeles, CA




Airlift Productions ~ where the warmth of analogue lives…and the lightning speed of digital delivers!