Discuss radio host Barry Farber, who grew up in Greensboro, dies in New York Leisure
Farber moved here at the age of 5 when his father’s clothing store was running the family south.
In a 2014 interview with News & Record, he recalled watching WBIG radio broadcast from its previous location in the old O. Henry Hotel on North Elm and Bellemeade Streets.
“As printer ink gets into your blood, so do radio waves,” he said.
In 1948 he graduated from Greensboro Senior High School, now Grimsley. He studied journalism at UNC-Chapel Hill, where he was editor of the Daily Tar Heel.
When he moved from Greensboro to New York in 1957, he was aiming for a job with a newspaper or magazine.
“I didn’t think that radio or television would welcome a southern accent,” Farber recalled in a 2014 interview.
As it turned out, his southern accent and accompanying meekness didn’t hurt. He found work as a radio producer, then as a talk show host.
Farber interviewed his first solo radio program in 1960, according to the Museum of Broadcast Communications in Chicago. He’s interviewed guests longer than any other living, continuously aired radio host, the New York Times reported.
He was also an author and linguist – he translated Russian for the US Army during the Korean War – who studied more than 25 languages and wrote the book How to Learn a Language in 1991. He founded the Language Club in New York City.