Ricardo Sneezy, Apache DJ
He mixes requests from traditional powwow music with tribal drums and chants and switches to Fats Domino, the Rolling Stones, Buck Owens, Louis Armstrong, Bob Marley and Creedence Clearwater but the dialogue is mostly in Apache with a few necessary words in English for commercials and special requests.
Request calls are usually from the San Carlos Apache Tribe near Globe, where Sneezy was born, raised and currently lives, but the show also draws listeners from the White Mountain Apache Tribe at Pinetop, The Gila River Indian community outside of Scottsdale and Florence State Prison so the station is heard throughout Central Arizona including most of the Phoenix area.
He uses a down-to-earth approach to his audience. He leans forward into the mike and softly asks in Apache if the parents out there have hugged their children today told them they love them. In English he says, “I see a lot of people with this cloud over their heads from long ago injustices or some current squabbles within the community and I’m trying to put good thoughts into people’s minds.”
Sneezy grew up with classic rock, the golden oldies and listens to Anne Murray and jazz to mellow out after his job as director of surveillance at the Apache Gold casino.
His radio show runs from 7 to 9 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays and is so popular the station is considering a third hour.
This story, another example of a positive approach to Native Unity, has been edited from recent article by Richard Ruelas in “The Arizona Republic”.