Before the late 1960’s, there was little opportunity for people of color on radio or TV. Once opportunities did become available, these trailblazers had to work extremely hard to forge a career in the highly competitive business of broadcasting. One such pioneer is Marvin Tim Flemmings.
Flemmings, originally from High Springs, Florida, grew up in a musically inclined family (his brother, Leroy, played saxophone and toured with James Brown, Otis Redding and Joe Tex, and was a former director of the Al Downing Orchestra), and graduated in 1966 from Gibbs High School. He cites WTMP deejay George Charouve (George C) as a great influence on his developing interest in broadcasting.
While attending East Tennessee State University, Flemmings did deejay work at the college station and had his own jazz show. He also got an opportunity to work at a local country station. After graduating with a BA in health and physical education, with a minor in broadcast communication, he continued to hone his broadcast skills in Armed Forces Radio while serving in the Army.
After completing his military duty, Flemmings fulfilled his boyhood dream of commanding the radio airwaves, and eventually joined Tampa Bay’s WLCY, WTMP and WRXB. Before retiring, he worked with Tampa’s listener-supported WMNF (2004-2015) as host of early Saturday morning’s ‘Mellow Music Encounter’.