Month: December 2009

WLS 25th Anniversary Broadcast | April 08, 1985

Available in parts elsewhere, the complete, unedited broadcast as heard on WLS 890 Chicago as recorded by new contributor Michael J. DeLaRosa. He writes: Hope you are able to use this. I cannot believe we are coming up on the 25th of the 25th. I recorded this as it aired at 6:00pm April 8, 1985. I have heard similar pieces voiced by Jeff Davis and played at various WLS parties…but this is the original voiced by Tommy Edwards. Running over an hour in length, this then history of MusicRadio 89 WLS is well chronicled, from the jocks, to the music, the promotions, commercials and more!

“1972 – Big D: 50 Years of Broadcasting History”, WDRC Hartford | December 31, 1972

Contributor Steve from Cape Cod sent this in in time for our New Year’s update, 2009. Produced for it’s 50th anniversary of broadcasting, this off-air recording (with some additions by your friendly webmaster) starts in 1922 and records many important events, including the Hindenburg Disaster, the bombing of Manilla (WW2), programming highlights including Big Band music shows and radio operas like The Lone Ranger… then it’s on to WDRC’s years as a Top 40 station up to then-current 1972. The final portion of this is a recording made with a mic at a radio speaker at the stroke of midnight as Big D welcomed in 1973. This is an authentic original recording and we thank Steve for his contribution!

Composite: Dallas, 1990

Contributor Marc Viquez recently sent this in for posting. He writes: This was the first time visiting Dallas, Texas; I was in town for a week for my mother’s teacher’s convention. I found that the city had some great CHR radio stations: Y95 and 97.1 KEGL. They also had 100.3 Jamz, whiched seemed to be leaning towards CHR/Rythmic. However, there was plenty of good music being played on these three stations and, even back as a teenager, I was able to tell that both Y95 and KEGL were in a state of war with one another. A lot of the sweepers and bumpers were typical of the early 1990s and within a few years-when many CHR stations ceased operations or flipped formats to either Hot AC or Alternative-they were almost nonexistent. In fact, less than two years later when I returned to ...

QuickCheck: Jack Armstrong, WFUN Miami | October, 1968

Heres’s a very young Jackson Armstrong (with a slightly higher pitched voice) on WFUN, one of the early AM Top 40 stations in Miami. This has all the elements that many personality oriented stations had, reverb, PAMS jingles, and a lot of jock patter. Certainly not the streamlined Drake approach, more like a WABC approach, circa 1964. It’s only slightly over 3 minutes in length but you can certainly get a feel for what things sounded like in the tumultuous year of 1968.

QuickCheck: Russ O’Hara, KRLA Los Angeles | June 12, 1969

1969 was a good year for Top 40 radio in Los Angeles. KFWB was still around, albeit more like a Middle of the Road station, 93/KHJ was at the top of it’s game, and then there was KRLA. Never the powerhouse hit station that other AMs were, past or future, it was a warm and cozy station that played current music and featured warm personalities. You’d probably call it your parent’s music station. Russ O’Hara is filling in for Rob Foster (KFRC) here. Russ is a laid-back jock, one you’d perhaps find on a late 70s/early 80s Soft Rock FM station. Its a cozy aircheck, and shows that KRLA was certainly not going to try and beat KHJ at its own game.

“Guess Who” – 1170 KCBQ San Diego | January 26, 1971

KCBQ was in the midst of morphing from what it was in the 60s to what it became – a 70s powerhouse Top 40 station known for its one shotgun jingle, and what became known as the “Q” format. This is Bobby Ocean’s KCBQ. You hear a jock who sounds, if one could draw an analogy, much like Dick Robinson of WDRC fame. Its the voice and personality. The news guy sounds a bit like Terrence McKeever (WHBQ, KOUL), but nobody identifies themselves, just the music. Lots of promos that mention the new Q, and one which reminds listeners to send in the list of voices to name in the “Guess Who Q” contest. No wonder nobody says their name! Does anybody remember this contest? Was it a format change of sorts? New staff hirings? We just don’t know, but someone out ther...

Barry Kay, 93/KHJ Los Angeles | 1972

The Johnny Mann Singers are still playing in between the records on 93/KHJ. This is 1972 and while Drake is on his way out, the Boss Sound is still present. Listen now to Barry Kay, as he weaves in and out of commercials and records like a crotch rocket weaves through traffic at high speed. Its one spot, then a record, and it all seems so effortless. 1972 was not a kind year for KHJ, the station was on the verge of ending one era, and launching a new. But it does sound good to our ears, which are accustom to 6 minutes of commercials, followed by the same dozen songs heard the previous hour and the same liners said by the same under-paid voice track. Yes, it was so much better in ’72, and Barry Kay was one of the good guys we remember.

Jim Davis, 93/KHJ Los Angeles | 1976

Forget about Boss Radio. KHJ had a LOT going for it in the mid-70s, if nothing else, the programming and voice brilliance of Charlie Van Dyke at the helm of an L.A. legend. It’s difficult to outline the politics of radio in Los Angeles in this era. The staple KHJ jocks that listeners were used to in the Boss Era (1966-1970) were elsewhere on the dial, and that meant that a whole different group of professionals had to perform brilliantly. RKO management had told programming pioneer Bill Drake to take a hike a few years before this, so, this high-personality lightning fast presentation with it’s unique RKO style was in place at 93/KHJ in 1976. Van Dyke did mornings (until later that year when Rick Dees arrived from WHBQ Memphis), Beau Weaver had his time slot, and then there was...

Capt. Billy, KAFM 92.5 Dallas | April, 1974

Sounding suspiciously like a McLendon station, this short-lived Top 40 outlet sat at 92.5 on the FM dial. Never to be a serious contender to the REAL McLendon FM at the time, KNUS 99, this station did sound pretty good. By today’s standards, it sounds awesome! Notice the imaging and the voices. Pretty typical for Top 40 stations in the mid-70s, in fact, listen to the 92K “Great Get-Off” promo at 1:56. The same sound effect was used as part of the Top of Hour ID at WXLO, X-Rock 80 and some others. See how many other similarities you can find with this vs other Top 40 stations of the day…

Rich Brother Robbin, KCBQ San Diego | June, 1973

Found on a tape we thought we’d already processed was this gem. From the Summer of ’73, here’s wildman Rich Brother Robin apprearing in what sounds like his return to KCBQ (we never knew he left!). Perhaps he’d just been on vacation. No matter, Rich Bro is the poster child for high energy Top 40. Right up there with Jack Armstrong, Bill Lee and other screamers, Rich Brother Robin doesn’t let us down in this nine-plus minutes of scoped AM Top 40 heaven. It really didn’t get much better than KCBQ in ’73. This is more proof.

Lisa Flairhe / Rhino, CKIK Calgary | August 22, 1996

We know very little about the Calgary market, and can only go by what the source tape says. Dated simply 8/22, we’re going to guess the year as 1996, assuming Cheryl Crow’s “Every Day Is A Winding Road” is a current song in rotation. A few notables on this 10+ minute scope: Lisa Flairhe(sp) (pronounced Flair-hay) is heard towards the beginning, in just one break. She talks after the music stops, like an old AOR approach. After a commercial break, Rhino steps in with a live Top Hour Legal ID over a music bed, and is heard often, talking over the music in a more CHR approach. I’m not sure if this was typical of the format or a fluke. The imaging voice is a guy by the name of Zak. Don’t remember his last name but he voiced a lot of Alternative and Modern AC...