AZ Abrahams a true friend my tribute
November 22, 2009 4 Comments
Saturday 21st Nov, Oh boy, was I up for our radio show on Heart 104.9fm .
My beloved All Blacks are playing England and Italy would get smashed by the Boks. Two fantastic rugby games.
Sam Roy is controlling the mayhem that is on the couch from 8am – 9am with Zahieer Adams and I having a full go at the French for the World cup hand goal. The private line rings in the studio; no one has that number .Sam takes the call. Off air Sam mentions to us that this man has called in to say AZ has been killed in a car accident.
My first thoughts are no this is a terrible prank. The show ends at 9am and we all leave and I drive to my office in Mowbray only to get a call at 9.40am with Sam saying two words “It’s true”.
I nearly crash my car crying uncontrollably. My first words out my mouth are Why, Why, Why. Why do the good guys go so early! I drive back to the station to see Vernon Adams calling staff. I know it is true. AZ is dead. The most amazing friend you could ever have, our birthdays are 7 days apart his on 27 Jan mine on 20th. When we first met we disliked each other, he was working for a small record label and I was at the mighty B.M.G .What did this cocky young enthusiastic kid know, the elixir of youth. We found out latter we saw ourselves in each other.
We boxed heads and we went our separate ways until I got a show at Heart 104.9fm talking sport on the couch on Sat mornings .I started with Fiona Furey and then the station did a switch and AZ was now the presenter,Wow this kid again I thought! How wrong I was .His first words to me went along the lines of “just talk and talk into the mic.” AZ loved the Boks; I loved the All Blacks – radio heaven.
We struck up an instant friendship and a deep love and respect for one another, but we needed someone to talk cricket. A chance meeting at a braai with a great friend Alan “Flapper “Alperstein, who knew cricket, played cricket and could talk was the answer. AZ I have the solution “Flapper” What he laughed, but AZ trusted my judgment.
To cut a long story short the show rocked AZ was dynamic and teaching these two complete novices everything he knew about radio, AZ loved on the couch and we loved AZ. He gave of himself 100% and we excelled so much so that I am still doing the feature today .It’s because of AZ!
AZ worked in the fashion field a lot and he would often MC or host a fashion event and I would be running the sound. It was never “work” when AZ was around .It was a joy to watch him work a crowd from Vangate Mall to Cavendish Square. He could make people rock. AZ was a total pro 100% committed to the task at hand and an absolute joy to see being in control of the stage with great mic technique and stage presence…AZ was like a young Alex Jay.
On another note I remember buying a pink baby blanket as a baby gift for his new born 1st love Zara, AZ found this very very funny .I was single and what did I know about babies, but I was taken up to his lovely home in Walmer Estate, to be shown the blanket, with the words “Zara loves the blankie look”
Eventually on the couch ended after a year and a half (on 3 March 2007) was the last show and AZ was moved to another slot .
AZ late night show 10 -2am Fri and Sat .AZ joked they moving me to fix the show and get the Listenership up. The party king was born .AZ always had it in him but now he could manifest this personality on air and off air.
Away from the public eye AZ had these amazing strong family values, with a love for his fellow friends, and his undying love for his daughter Zara. AZ would always come and confide in me or his great great friend Karen Burt who has knows AZ since he was 17. We both saw and knew the other side of AZ, this wonderful love for his daughter and son.
AZ did confide in me the last time we worked together 3rd October at Cavendish Square .
AZ was getting ready to work in Johannesburg. He was excited and wanted new challenges. He was happy for me as I was in love with Razia and insisted in no uncertain terms to Razia that she look after me as we are bothers. That was AZ always worrying about his friends .We had our customary cigarette before the show and then AZ rocked the crowd and the show pumped. He then went north that night flying backwards and forwards.
I Really wanted to see AZ and on Friday night (20th Nov ) before his show, I thought lets make plans for Saturday, I will call him Saturday morning. We needed to catch up and we could perhaps watch rugby together and Razia also wanted to see him. A friend of yours became a friend of his, he always made people feel at ease. I still face booked a message to him in the morning as his log in details are on the PC I use in the studio when I come in.
AZ my brother you gave me unconditional love and an amazing friendship. No one can take that way. I will always celebrate your life. You are an unforgettable fire, gone too soon.
Love and respect