As head of WMAL’s Production Department, in addition to producing promos and
commercials, Charlie created numerous specials about Music, Television, Sports, Trivia,
Comedy, Year-end Reviews, Holidays, the D-Day Anniversary, Operation Desert Storm,
POWs and MIAs, the Academy Awards, and one called All Commercials All The Time, a
consistent barrage of radio and TV commercials and jingles from the past.
A Talk Show Without the Rants
In 2000, Charlie opted for a chance to host a Monday-Friday Nightly Talk Show on WMAL.
He featured some issues, but mostly subjects on the lighter side including celebrity
interviews, contests, and a special Trivia Hour on Friday nights. When he tackled the issues
he did his best to air all reasonable points of view; a rarity in talk radio today. The
Washington Post columnist Marc Fisher called Charlie the best talk show host in DC.
Nabbing the DC Snipers
October, 2002. Unprecedented fear gripped the nation’s capital, when indiscriminate
murderers used cunning and ill-directed imagination to gun down innocent people.
On the night of October 23, WMAL learned of the car description and license number of “The
DC Snipers.” As refrigeration specialist, Whitney Donahue, was driving home after a long
workday, he was listening to WMAL. The information he heard on the Charlie Warren Show,
allowed him to identify the car at a rest stop on Maryland’s I-70, bravely watch the
suspects, then report them to authorities. The terror that had gripped Washington and its
suburbs for weeks was finally stopped.
Talking To Top Talent
At WMAL Charlie interviewed dozens of well-known entertainers such as Al Franken, Bea
Arthur of Maude, Mike Farrell of M.A.S.H.and actor Rod Steiger. Musicians such as the
Beach Boys’ Mike Love, Seals & Croft’s Dan Seals, Henry Mancini, Dionne Warwick, James
Ingram, The Oak Ridge Boys, and Neil Sedaka talked with Charlie.
USA soccer star Mia Hamm, Redskins football greats Art Monk and Darrell Green, and JFK 50
Miler champ and two-time Marine Corps Marathon winner Jim Hage, guested with Charlie.
Former White House spokesman, now ABC-TV host, George Stephanopoulos, “Homicide:
Life On The Street” and “St. Elsewhere” TV producer, Tom Fontana, the first American to
climb Mt. Everest, Jim Whittaker, one of the first men on the moon, Buzz Aldrin, General
Norman Scwarzkoff, and numerous U. S. Senators and Congressmen were interviewed by
Charlie also performed at the Kennedy Center, MC’d for Henry Mancini at Constitution Hall
and introduced Tony Bennett and the Count Basie Orchestra at Wolf Trap.
Awards At WMAL
Charlie won the March of Dimes AIR Award (Achievement In Radio)for “Best On-Air Talent” for
his work on his Saturday and Sunday morning shows. (coverage: Washington Post and
He won AIR Awards or was a finalist fourteen times in ten years in the categories of Best
Talent, Best Talk Show, Best Weekend Show, Best Performance In A Radio Spot, Best
Promo, Best Spot News Coverage, and Best Non-Drive show.
|Charlie's hiking buddy, Chuck Taylor, exits
a crag on Old Rag Mountain
Shenandoah National Park, Virginia
Nabbing The Snipers... and
"No Rant" Talk Radio
It was 1986 when Charlie joined Full-Service Music/Personality Leader WMAL-AM as Production
Coordinator and Weekend Personality. The station had been newly purchased by successful
broadcasting company CapCities.
With its well-known Morning & Afternoon Teams of Harden & Weaver and Trumbull & Core,
consistent news coverage, and its reputation for community involvement, WMAL was the
station most everyone tuned to find out what was going on.
Top Weekend Infotainment
In 1990 WMAL's famous Morning Drive Team, Harden & Weaver opted out of their Saturday
morning duties. As Charlie Warren puts it, "I fell in through the door." He felt comfortable
with the job of Morning Man again. And listeners must have agreed, for in the ten years that
Charlie hosted WMAL's Saturday Morning Program, it was the top weekend show in
Washington. As the Program Director of a major competitor told Charlie, "You were killing
In 1993, due to his success with Saturdays, Sunday mornings were added. He took WMAL’s
Sunday morning program from below the top ten to the second most listened-to.
Charlie was on the air on Sunday morning August 31, 1997 when the world was stunned by
the news of the death of Britain’s Princess Diana. Charlie devoted his entire program to the
continually changing story, with reports from ABC’s Chuck Taylor with President Clinton,
People Magazine’s DC bureau chief, and ABC reporters in London.