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1030 WBZ / Boston

Dick Summer & the Nightlite Show, WBZ Radio 103 Boston | August, 1964

Dick SummerNow, from the 50kw Boston blowtorch reaching 38 states, Dick Summer‘s legendary night show on mid-60s WBZ!

The history of WBZ is a long, storied one reaching back to the beginnings of commercial broadcasting. Only the second licensed station in the US (although not in it’s inevitable form), WBZ was generally a pop station, first in the golden age of radio (pop in the respect that it ran the popular programs and music of the day, having been a part of the NBC ‘Red’ network in the 40s), and later, as Boston’s second top 40 station, lasting until 1966.

Smack in the middle of WBZ’s top 40 era was Dick Summer. He ruled the nighttime airwaves in Boston and all up and down the eastern seaboard until the station shifted to nighttime talk in the late 60s. Summer’s ‘Nightlife’ show was a mix of music and mystique, as you’ll hear in this aircheck. There were, of course, the top hits of the day with a generous dose of ‘oldies’ from the 50s and earlier in the 60s decade, but Summer adds in some strange radio dramas and talks about men from Mars… the stuff that certainly would fit today’s “Coast to Coast AM with George Noory” ((C) Premier Radio Networks).

Strangely enough, there are no snappy WBZ jingles, few commercials and one frequent PSA about Systic Fibrosis. This show, at least on this tape, is very much just Dick Summer and a stack of records. Fun and interesting listening for those who remember the early to mid-60s.

1030 Boston WBZ

Big Apple Airchecks Matt Seinberg New York Traders

Courtesy of Big Apple Airchecks

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  1. When I was a young teenager living in Wisconsin, I would listen to Dick Summer on a rocket radio (on cloudy nights the skip was just right) with the antenna clip attached to my bedsprings and my ear with the one earpiece pressed to my pillow for volume control. I well remember “Down with Sandwiches, Up With Shrewsburys.” I still have the dime I wore on a chain around my neck. I remember N.A.G., the protest against gutlessness (although I can’t remember what the N stood for). I really think it’s time to revive that one, and perhaps we can save some of these young snowflakes. Thanks for the memories, AirChexx.

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  2. Thanks Beckie. I agree that the NAG (Nightlighters Against Gutlessness) might be a good thing to do again. Dick Summer

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  3. I ended up here in the course of Googling which WBZ DJ it was that Wikipedia mentions as pivotal in getting increased airplay up and down the East Coast for Simon & Garfunkel’s “The Sound of Silence.” It apparently was “The Sounds of Silence” on their debut album, but the title got changed when Columbia Records remixed and re-released it, leading to bigger sales. I think any mystery about who the DJ was has been solved. (In looking up the song, I also saw a rather modest mention of “being beyond mainstream AM” in Dick’s book, which I found via Google Books. Page 176, I think it was.)
    Back in my teens, I spent a lot of time listening to Dick, Dave Maynard, and “Juicy Brucey” Bradley. Thanks for all the music, guys.

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