A world traveler, Corny O'Connell is always seeking new discoveries. As a WFUV DJ, he is constantly making them.
Though his dulcet tones rarely betray his excitement, Corny is as thrilled by hearing new, innovative artists for the first time as he is by visiting such far-flung locales as Machu Picchu and Macao. "I'm a sucker for female vocalists such as Patty Griffin, Lucinda Williams and Norah Jones," he confesses. "The best part of my job is sharing this music with an audience that I know is open to it." While he can't pack up every WFUV member in his luggage and take them along on his trips, he can take them on his musical journeys.
After years of hosting the evening music mix, in 2012 Corny took over the anchor chair hosting WFUV's morning show, weekdays from 6-10am.
"Hosting the morning show is a nice change of pace and it's fun to make friends with the morning listeners," he says.
Corny obviously relishes unconventionality and the freedom to explore. He says WFUV stands out on the dial because "it's adventurous, independent, intelligent, personable and fun."
If he sounds like a cheerleader for WFUV, that's only fitting: in addition to his hosting duties, Corny also produces the station's membership drives. And he can be persuasive. After all, he learned the art of the argument at Fordham Law School before being sidetracked by a career in radio, thanks to his days as a student engineer and DJ at the station. His fundraising motto is: "Resistance is futile. You will be assimilated."
Joking aside, Corny takes his job seriously, making sure to stay on top of the latest releases and to constantly educate himself and his listeners. "As a public station playing lesser-known artists, it's important to provide some perspective along with the music," he posits. "And I love working at a station that allows the hosts that freedom."
Corny grew up in Westchester, and now lives in Manhattan with his wife, Amy, and their son, Leo.
What are two or three things we might find you doing away from the station? I like naps, crossword puzzles, bike riding, chocolate chip cookies, and poker.
What would WFUV listeners be surprised to know about you? This is the one question that consumes the bulk of my waking hours. Would they be more shocked to learn the sordid things I've done for love or those I've done for money?
Name a song that defines you. That would have to be a mash-up of Theme from "Shaft" and "I Feel Pretty" from West Side Story.
What would you have become if you didn't have a career in radio? I would have become a writer for Saturday Night Live, then I would have developed a drug habit, gone through a series of shallow relationships, and wound up destitute in the Canary Islands.
What wacky thing would you do if you had the time (or guts)? I would develop a drug habit, go through a series of shallow relationships, and wind up destitute in the Canary Islands.