Rob Early grew up in Blackwell, Okla., in a farm town of 7,000 people. He got his first radio job when he was 15 at the local station (there was only one), where his father, a minister, had a Sunday-morning show. The station's manager gave him three hours on the air on Saturdays to keep him from hanging out at the station so much during the weekdays. In a 1991 interview with the Orlando Sentinel he said; ''Even though it was country and western music, which I despise, being on the radio was magic to me.'' He went to Oklahoma University near Oklahoma City, but dropped out after six semesters to take a full-time job as the night jock on KMOA-AM. Before coming to Orlando in 1987, he worked morning shows in Little Rock, Ark., Austin, Texas, and Riverside/San Bernardino, Calif. Between Little Rock and Austin he also spent ten months touring on the standup comedy circuit. Rob, a former stand up comic, did a very imaginative morning show on WSTF-FM 101.1. In 1989, he could be seen (and heard) floating high above Orlando in a hot-air balloon. When Early left his first stint at "Star 101" in March of 1989 after an 18-month stay, the station's morning show was rated tops in the Orlando area market. Rob left to pursue what he believed to be an opportunity in Charlotte, N.C., with Jefferson-Pilot Communications Co., a broadcasting company, that was not only going to give him the morning slot on then WBCY-FM, (now WBT), but the chance to develop a television show. The deal fell apart when Jefferson-Pilot had financial troubles. After moving to Charlotte, the radio station's format was changed from contemporary hits to easy listening, and Early was looking for a job. He moved to Los Angeles, fell back on an old skill - standup comedy - and spent a lot of time networking. Rob returned to Orlando and WSTF-FM 101.1 in 1991. The morning show consisted of Early, Dave Riley and Pat Madden.