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Gary Russel, 970 WWDJ Hackensack NJ | December 1972

97 WWDJ… the little station that could. And DID. For a time, this station did actually compete with Midtown Manhattan for the ears of Top 40 radio listeners.

We don’t know the complete background of WWDJ, but we have restored a somewhat muffled aircheck as best as possible so that our visitors may listen to this 5 minute scope and decide for themselves if WWDJ EVER really had a chance in the NYC moarket.

970 Hackensack NJ New York WWDJ 97DJ

Credits gratefully acknowledges the contributions of Steve Bleecker in donating this high quality recording. Thanks also to Andy Kitchen and Henry Frick for their roles in bringing this wonderful recording to our archives, so that all may enjoy and remember how radio was, and how it should be. Thank you.

Contributor Steve Bleecker writes:

“I need to Publicly say “Thanks Much” to Mr. Henry Frick, who is now retired, and living with his wife of many years, in Ft. Worth Texas. Before his long and Successful Career in Railroading…Henry and I were Curry College Buddies in Milton, Mass., and so many of the tapes I now have been able to share were given to me many years ago…and were painstakingly recorded by Henry, either while he was at school, in Milton, or in Greenwich, Conn., at his parent’s home. So…we are so Very Grateful, Henry ! Thank You !”

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  1. Gary Russel’s real name was Gary Russell Corry, who was program director at WQXI 790 Atlanta in 1969-1970 when I was there. He was elected into the Georgia Radio Hall of Fame in 2008. He passed away September 15, 2010. Read about him on the Georgia Radio Hall of Fame website. He was the voice of Red Neckerson. A fun guy to work for as well.

    Karl Phillips


  2. I remember ‘DJ speeding up their records. Mostly I listened to them for Mets PBP as Country WJRZ. Signal problems made them a New Jersey station primarily.


  3. It seems the problem WWDJ had was a limited reach with a format which, while still dominated by WABC was beginning to move toward FM. In prior days as WJRZ it was a country giant in the nation while being very small in the New York market. I remember for a time Sean Casey (WOR-FM) being on the air there and for some reason I’m thinking Al Brady, though I’m not 100% sure.


  4. I seem to remember on trips down state being able to get them in the bronx and manhattan east into brooklyn and queens you lost the signal quickly… in my opinion with a better signal they could have picked up where WMCA left off as a thorn in WABCs side.


  5. The station could only be heard in the car in some areas Didn’t have a very good signal


  6. Places in lower Conn could get signal in car


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