The story of the JOJO BAKER bug .


The Classic Volkswagen
WAS a great advertising tool.
ALAS since 2006 it no longer rides the Idaho panhandle..
This then is the story of THE BUG  that was.

From the Bonner County Daily Bee, 1/27/01
Joe Tajan: Purveyor of prosperity
'JoJo' ready to jockey for his own success
By: Ben Silverman, Staff writer

Some people sell cars. Some sell real estate or vegetables or bicycles. Joe Tajan sells prosperity.

Tajan and his candy-apple red Volkswagen covered with colorful advertisements have become the ubiquitous symbol of his product, appearing at grand-openings and special events throughout North Idaho.

For radio listeners, Tajan is better known as Jo Jo Baker, Sunday morning disk jockey at Sandpoint's KPND for the past seven years.

"My whole concept is for people to look at the car when it's parked or driving down the road," Tajan said. "It's funny because a lot of people see the car and want to meet Jo Jo Baker. But I didn't get the car to promote me. I got the car for the people who buy ads on it and the radio listeners. I promote their prosperity."

Tajan's voice was made for radio, or as he says with a hearty laugh,
" My mother always said I have a face for radio."

Born in the Lone Star state of Texas, Tajan's smooth southern drawl and easy-going manner has hawked everything from leather goods and building supplies to cuisine from some of the regions finest restaurants.

"The best thing I like about my radio show is the feedback," he said. "People come up to me and say the show makes their day. When they come up to me in person and tell me that, it makes me excited to get out there and do an even better job."

And speaking of restaurants and radio, one of the hallmarks of Tajan's style is his deep love of good food. Scattered between the strains of off-the-beaten-track acoustic music he plays on his show, are recipe's he offers up as a delicious way to start the day.

"I've always been into food," he said. "I grew up with three sisters and I guess I was domesticated. I've always liked to cook."

His mother took the cue and sent Tajan and his three sisters to the Houston Natural Gas Cooking School where he won awards for his creations.

Locally, he was a well known part of the restaurant scene and worked as one of the last chefs at the Chateau Supper Club in Kootenai in 1974 before it closed. The Chateau later became Burt's Place and is now the Outlaw Bar.

Tajan has also worked as a chef at Schweitzer Mountain resort and the Pend Oreille Shores Floating Restaurant.

The early part of his 30-year residency in North Idaho began in the woods as a logger. Not long after that, Tajan and his wife, Tyler, brought two sons into the world, Crosby and Adam.

"My kids are what kept me here in North Idaho." he said. "They're both great kids. However, I realized I had to put my personality on the back burner as they grew up. I didn't want to embarrass them."

With both kids grown and on their own, Tajan said, with a twinkle in his eye, "now I can be myself."

All personal shenanigans aside, Tajan speaks with pride when it comes to his sons. His oldest, Crosby has earned a degree in Physical Education and is now an assistant coach at Sandpoint High School,working with the football, basketball and track teams. His younger son, Adam, has also earned a degree in the same field and like his brother, is at the high school and assistant coaches soccer.

Though Tajan likes to promote the prosperity of others, success on a scale that looms larger than the Texas horizon is just around the corner. With help and urging from supporters, Tajan has been working on landing a publishing deal for a cookbook, and if all goes well, a nationwide syndication for his radio show.

In the future, though we might remember him as that guy in the red Volkswagen, the rest of the world may well be hearing his golden voice spin tall tales on the radio; the voice we all know as Jo Jo Baker.

JOJO always has something going to advertise your product or business. 

Give JOJO a call and see what's up these days.


updated:  July 2006 - All Rights Reserved 2004-5
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