You’ve heard his voice on Sunday afternoons for years. It’s familiar, it’s friendly, it’s exciting, and it’s meant only one thing for the past decade – Buffalo Bills football.
As John Murphy celebrates ten years of live play-by-play broadcasting from the Bills radio booth in 2013, he’s also celebrating another milestone, smaller in scope but no less notable.
Last week marked the one year anniversary of the debut of the John Murphy Show, Murphy’s Monday through Friday, 7-9pm radio show on WGR 550 (Buffalo), Sports Radio 950 (Rochester) and on the Buffalo Bills Mobile App.
“We really had to hit the ground running a year ago,” Murphy said. “There was really no start up time. My last sportscast was Wednesday night, July 25th at 11 p.m. and I showed up at training camp the next day to start this job.”
But in no time an eventful year one was through, featuring a variety of guests from authors and historians, to national media personalities like ESPN’s Adam Schefter and Chris Berman, to head coach Doug Marrone and QB
“I like to break out of the typical sports talk mold and do interviews with thought-provoking people, maybe give people a different perspective of what’s going on not just with the Bills but with the NFL,” he said. “It’s a good challenge to find the right people to talk to. I kind of look for offbeat observers and get away from the day-to-day stuff.”
“He is great at knowing how to get through to people and talk about something that they’re going to relate to, to make them comfortable with him on air,” said John Murphy Show producer Russ Burton. “The show has exceeded my expectations.”
With Murphy’s local broadcasting pedigree and notoriety from his play-by-play role, the expectations were certainly set high. But with skin in the game as a Bills fan by birth who’s covered the team for the majority of his professional career, he feels his connection to the team and city only make his job more fun.
“We get a chance with one team to really get to know the ins and outs and the way the team’s going, and to share that experience with the fans,” he said. “If you’re a network football announcer, you parachute in on Friday afternoon and go to your meetings and watch your video and you’ve prepared all week, but I don’t think you have the same stake in it.”
Whether nightly on the John Murphy Show or weekly during the 2013 season, make no mistake that Murphy carries with him that homegrown passion and pride, connecting with fans in Western New York and around the world through his broadcasts.
“It’s such a good setup at Ralph Wilson Stadium to have those open windows and have those great fans right in front of you,” he said. "You can almost reach out and touch them. I root for them. I root for them to go home happy.”