Description by Contributor Chuck Ingersoll:
In 1980, Lew Dickey, Sr. purchased WSAY/1370 in Rochester, NY. For many years it had been one of two stations owned by Gordon Brown (the other in the Buffalo suburb of Cheektowaga) that were notable for naming every jock that came to the station Tom Thomas, Jerry Jack, and Mike Melody. With Mack McGuire and Bobby Bell on weekends. There were literally tens of Jerry Jacks, for example, throughout the decades. However Dickey wanted to create a WHAM/1180 clone. WHAM, with its 50,000 watt signal was a local daytime powerhouse and reached 35+ states and Canada at night. WSAY had an excellent directional signal at night that could be heard quite clearly in East Stroudsburg, PA, but not so well in due East and West suburbs of the suburban Brighton transmitter.
Dickey hired away George Haefner and Jack Slattery, long-time WHAM morning personalities, along with a strong news team including Mike Morgan, Mark Giardina, Dean Close and others. Current WHAM morning man Chet Walker was also on board. Dubbed “The New WSAY,” the station never really took off, and then cycled through call letter and format changes with talk/sport talk being one of them.
This aircheck is from Valentine’s Day, 1981. Chuck spent two years at the station doing middays, and was PD for a period of time. After this experience, he realized that while the advertising business (where he’d started out of college) was wacky, it wasn’t quite as crazy and radio, so he went on to work as a writer and creative director at Rochester agencies and own his own ad agency, Ingersoll et al, for 10 years. Today he keeps his hand and mouth in by doing voiceovers for training and commercials (www.hearchucknow.com), as well as naming and branding (www.brandsandtags.com), along with a weekly jazz show called The Soul Jazz Spectrum on Jazz 90.1/WGMC in Rochester. (www.jazz901.org).