He was a kid with a dream. During his part time job as a soda jerk in a Manhattan drug store, he projected as a loose, happy-go-lucky personality, kidding with the gang at the counter, or building one of his "tailor-made" ice cream concoctions. But he nursed a secret ambition to become a great drummer.
  An independent sort of guy, he scraped together enough quarters and nickels from his meager earnings to pick up a second-hand set of drums. Laboring to perfect his technique, he squeezed in practice sessions during evening hours away from school and his job. For awhile he took lessons from the famed Cozy Cole.
  Although Art Roberts didn't become the best drummer in the world, the training in rhythm and the knowledge of music he acquired helped him climb to a top spot in radio.
  It was during his days at Southeastern Louisiana College, where Art was majoring in veterinary medicine that he first entertained the notion of making radio a career. A notice on the campus bulletin board stated, "Part-time radio announcer needed." Art relates, "I had a lot more nerve than talent, so I trotted over to the station, had an audition and was accepted for the job. After a few sessions in front of a microphone and gaining a bit of experience, I decided this was the life for me, so I switched my major to speech."
  During his last year in college, Art taught speech and speech correction at St. Paul school in Covington, Louisiana. He also met, courted and married his attractive wife, Barbara.
  "In those early days," Art recalls. "there was one station, KTTB,  in Tyler, texas, that gave me an opportunity to learn everything about running a radio station. In addition to announcing and record-spinning, I was assigned the spot of program manager, and handled everything from choosing records to be played to ordering office supplies."
  On his WLS show, Art displays a kind of restless creativity, constantly devising "something different" for his listeners. For example, Art is currently spotlighting a "Teen Disc Jockey" segment on his Saturday broadcast - in which a young listener is invited to come to the station and appear as a guest disk jockey. "We choose the guys and gals on the basis of letters they send in," he reports. "We average between 150 and 200 letters a week, from which we pick the most likely candidate. The guests are allowed a fifteen minute chunk of the show, during which they usually introduce the top three songs of the week and offer their own brand of chatter.
  "Quite a fe of these 'disc-jockeys-of-tomorrow' exhibit talent. We hope these appearances will encourage some of them to make radio their career."
  Another Roberts project is the segment titled, "Hey, Baby, they're Playing Our Song," on his Sunday night show, a dramatic presentation of recording stars of the past and the songs they offered.
  Art has recently introduced another talent - a record album he narrates called "Hip Fables." According to Art, "These fables are part of a series of kookie, swinging bedtime stories I've written and told on the show, each with a sort of twist ending that has a moral. The stories aren't 'preachy' just entertaining."
  Art, his wife, Barbara, and the five Roberts youngsters - Cheryl, 13, Robert, 11, Pamela, 9, Dahleen, 7, and Wayne, 2 - live in one of Chicago's northern suburbs, where Art spends his free moments with the family.  "I get a kick out o horse-back riding," says Art. "jogging through the woods along a quiet, sun-dappled trail allows you to forget the day-to-day pressure for a moment or two. My wife and the three older kids often join me for an outing. One of my proudest possessions is a beautiful, hand-tooled saddle I bought recently."
  Art devotes a lot of his time and talents to charitable organizations, such as Cerebral Palsy, La Rabida sanitarium, the Amvets, B'Nai B'rith and others. He was recently awarded the U.S. Treasury Department's "Minute Man" award, for his work in promoting the sale of U.S. Savings Bonds. The Chicago Police Dept. also honored Art for his work with the Fraternal Order of Police during their Thanksgiving drive for the needy of Chicago.
  That young, ambitious soda jockey with a dream earned his niche among the top radio personalities in Chicagoland.
Art Roberts and Dick Clark with high school editors
Art Roberts and Ron Riley
Art Roberts gives Don Phillips the Heave Ho
Art Roberts and Ron Riley