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Close Up of Bob "Expanding Man" Bennhoff

Born in 1981, Bob grew up in Georgetown, Colorado. It was during his high school years in the spring of 1998 that he was given a job shadow assignment for a class. He ended up shadowing a DJ at KGOAT (on the recommendation of his mother) and was immediately enamored with the low rent but totally free environment that makes Clear Creek Radio so unique. Despite the old egg cartons nailed to the walls and subversive materiel pinned up that many would have scoffed at, it looked like a free thinkers Xanadu through his young eyes. It was later that summer that he was offered his own show on the air, keeping with the station’s community service ideals by getting young people from the county high school involved. He immediately took the job and never looked back.

Despite a few choppy shows at the beginning of his burgeoning career Bob quickly got over his nervousness and began to settle into the DJ persona. From early on music to make up the bulk of the show, but frequently there would be guests to bring their brand of music, as well as impromptu comedy bits. The show evolved, as did the young man’s musical tastes. As the years went by Bob became more focused on the music aspect of the show, doing less on air bits, and doing an increased number of solo shows. The time he parceled out for discussion was almost exclusively limited to news about the artists and songs on the play list with anecdotes of encounters and interesting tidbits relevant to the world of music.

After graduating from Clear Creek High School in 2000, Bob moved to Boulder and began attending the University of Colorado. Despite the distance and the lack of a motor vehicle, he refused to give up his spot on Saturday, which had remained the same from his first broadcast. Arranging rides he was able to continue to do the show with few misses. Partly inspired by his DJ experience he pursued a BS in Media Studies through CU’s Journalism school in 2005, as well as a BA in US History. Now living in Denver, Bob continues to do his show in the same time slot.

It was in the Spring of 2005 that Patrick Mullen, the former co-worker, roommate, band-mate and frequent guest of the Expanding who had gotten his own show called “The Land of Sunshine” died in a car accident. Pat was Bob’s favorite guest because of an extensive record collection backed by an exhaustive knowledge and the deepest love for music of anyone he had ever known. Bob’s proudest moment on the radio was the show he dedicated to his long time friend. The program consisted only of music that he knew to be Pat’s favorite, not coincidentally this was the show that got the most response from the community that both he and Pat had grown up in. Bob will never forget Pat’s contribution to his music collection as well as his life and always thinks of him every time he is on the air.

The music that is covered in the Expanding Man program is as diverse as the hosts ever expanding tastes, hence the moniker. This can cover a multitude of genres including but not limited to classic rock, folk, country, bluegrass, blues, jazz, hardcore, punk, ska, contemporary hard rock, classical, and bizarre pop music. Some of the favorites played include Tom Waits, They Might Be Giants, Frank Zappa, The Talking Heads, The Violent Femmes, The Who, Bob Dylan, Strung Out, Ryan Adams, Bright Eyes, Ben Folds, Bruce Springsteen, Warren Zevon, Still Left Standing, The Alkaline Trio, The Foo Fighters, Paul Simon and many others. Certainly an eclectic mix. Bob has expert knowledge of the local Denver scene, attending many concerts and knowing some of the key players, including some from Clear Creak County that he met in high school. As he often points out on air the scene has been a disappointment of late, but he remains connected in the hopes that it will be revived. The shows format generally involves playing large chunks of album’s glossing over anything that was a hit on commercial radio and finding the prime cuts from the rest of the albums. Occasionally the show will be a mixed big, in which anything from his collection could be played in no particular order. Other times there will be a theme show pertaining to a style of music, single band, or something subtler that will provoke something for him to discuss. Guests are infrequent, but he always on the lookout for a fresh musical perspective to share the air and provide his audience with something they like, just haven’t heard yet.

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