I’ve had so much positive feedback from all of you on this column and one common question, what’s your background? So, I’ll give you the Cliff Notes on how I came to call Muscatine home.
I was born in Elm Wood Park, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago. We lived there for several years before moving to Oak Park, another suburb located eight miles west of downtown. My parents are Sheila McCarthy (a current Muscatine resident) and John Loconsole (a retired Chicago police officer). I have three siblings; Phil is thirty-three, Brian is twenty-nine, and Gabriella, who is twenty.
Growing up I was shy (to a certain extent), lacked confidence, and had my share of struggles. I turned things around academically and socially thanks to the help of some good friends and event better teachers and guidance counselors.
I started St. Ambrose in 2002 with plans to major in Secondary English Education so I could eventually teach it. But that changed. I failed one of education department exams, a math portion to be specific. I retook the test and failed again. I became discouraged and eventually changed my major to radio and television broadcasting. I think fondly of my time spent at St. Ambrose.
Upon graduating in December of 2006, I was immediately hired by the radio station B100/KBEA-FM in Davenport. In January of 2007, the “Red Hot Brian Scott & Tony Tone” radio show was born. I spent five and a half years on B100, enjoyed tremendous success, met my wife, and had some incredible experiences.
But corporate radio doesn’t pay well, and their health insurance was bad. Did I mention my then fiancé was pregnant with our first child (Henry)? I left the station in July of 2012 for an opportunity with the HON Company here in Muscatine, my wife’s hometown. I spent six months working with a great team of folks in the customer service department. Shout out to the third floor on Oak Street–that’s a tough job.
Radio called me back, and in December of 2012, I was hired to take the then MAC FM and rebrand it. January 2013 saw the introduction of Vintage Sound 93.1 FM. The five years I spent on the radio in Muscatine were life changing. Being able to connect with this community and share in other’s lives was powerful and something I’ll never forget. I made lifelong friends and to this day will see listener friends and have great conversations with them. My goal was to have a radio station that Muscatine could be proud of. Something different and tangible.
It was hard to leave there in 2017 but, the chance to work for Hy-Vee meant wonderful benefits for my family and less work stress for me. I’m a firm believer in being in the right place at the right time and not being afraid to take a chance. This December 11th will be my second anniversary with Hy-Vee, and I’m loving every minute of it. If I’m being honest, I’ve never felt so proud of the place I work. I still get to see so many friends, be creative with the “Hy-Vee Today with Tony Tone,” and I’m actively involved in the Muscatine community.
You all have been the reason my family and I have decided to lay down permanent roots. I’m humbled to have your support and I promise to never take that for granted.