BY ROY ALBERT ANDRADE, K1LLER, Inc.
BURBANK, CALIFORNIA - One of Los Angeles morning radio's biggest names doesn't belong to a young and charming man with a sweet voice stopping every foot of the way to sign autographs or take pictures with fans. Nope! It's a potbelly man with a thick mustache in a guayabera button-down shirt, and white hair tucked underneath his signature cowboy hat from a bucolic town in La Sauceda, Michocan.
Born Juan Carlos Razo, 37, cleverly roleplays Don Cheto, a fictional Mexican hillbilly, who conveys comical skits that resonate with listeners nationwide. Razo crossed the U.S. border in 1996 with the aid of a coyote, a human smuggler. He entered the country illegally after a first failed attempt, and landed a job folding clothes in a factory for $90 per week.
He lived in a garage, and utilized his pidgin skills to graduate from El Monte High School. Shortly after, he became an intern at Que Buena, a Spanish language regional radio station, and literally worked from the ground up. There were times when the bus fare became too expensive, making the trip home unfeasible, giving him no other choice but to sleep overnight at the radio station. His work ethics, and perseverance made him an overnight sensation on the air waves. His successes with a nationally syndicated morning show 'Don Cheto Al Aire,' multiple television appearances, as well as musical recordings will make anyone a firm believer in the American Dream.
Today, he's living it up in Valencia, a neighborhood in Santa Clarita located within Los Angeles County, California, and walking around with one of the biggest names in Spanish broadcasting history. Thanks to LBI Media, the largest privately held, minority-owned Spanish broadcasting company in North America, now Chicago radio listeners have a new morning drive option. The firm's #1 syndicated “Don Cheto Al Aire” show was added to the city's air waves. To date, LBI Media's radio network has a presence in over 29 significant markets across the U.S.
“We are excited to continue expanding ‘Don Cheto Al Aire’s’’ presence in key DMA’s in the US, and Chicago and Charlotte are no exception. ‘Don Cheto Al Aire’ is already #1 in many markets, including our flagship station in Los Angeles KBUE, ‘La Famosa Que Buena.’ Chicago is a giant market and we are very pleased to work with Showtime Media’s ‘El Poder.’ We are looking forward to leveraging our EstrellaTV station WESV in Chicago to promote Don Cheto to a brand new audience,” explained Winter Horton, Chief Operating Officer, LBI Media, Inc.
Shawn W. Anderson