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97.1 WASH-FM / Washington DC

Eddy Gallagher, 97.1 WASH-FM Washington DC | Winter, 1979

Big Apple Airchecks Matt SeinbergCourtesy of our largest Contributor (so far), Big Apple Airchecks, here’s something people likely haven’t heard in a very long time. 97.1 WASH-FM has been doing Soft Rock, or, more properly, “Adult Contemporary” for a very long time and we look back now to the Winter of 1979 for this clip. Thinking the month of February here, because on the master tape this came from, the next cut is another WASH-FM from the same time period and features a spot for ‘Valentines Day’. You’ll hear that one shortly.

The Morning Man here is Eddy Gallagher. We don’t know anything about him, but surely some of our visitors do – and that’s where you come in. Be sure to comment below the aircheck player (be sure to scroll to the bottom of this page!).

While the news reports are scoped out, along with the music by our Co-Contributor, Lee Chambers (See Below), take note of the news anchor names: Chandra (it sounds like) Phillips (first newscast) and Mike Cavanaugh (2nd newscast). Also take note of the Legal ID and News Sounder. WASH-FM was owned and operated in 1978-79 by Metromedia, the same great company which owned WNEW 1130 in New York City. Metromedia was a broadcaster known for its quality programming and superb personalities, no matter what format or city their stations happened to be in. WASH-FM was no exception.

Also, take note that this is *NOT* high-energy, uptempo programming. In ’79, the fledgeling Adult Contemporary FM stations were often times, as demonstrated here, rather dry, smooth in presentation – something that did endear these stations which played the softer hits of the day to ‘adult’ audiences, 25-54 years old. Remember, many of these stations at this point were evolving from either very slow “Soft Rock” formats (think the old WEEI-FM Boston) or sleepy Beautiful Music formats. Just five years later most of these stations were pretty up-tempo.

97.1 Washington WASH-FM Today's Best Variety Metromedia CBS


Aircheck #1,381 since May 2, 2002!
WPGC Tribute SiteCo-Contributor Lee Chambers runs the WPGC Tribute Site. He is the one who did the original scope of this aircheck, and provided it to Big Apple Airchecks’ Matt Seinberg. We wish to thank both for their generous contribution to the Aiechexx Archives!

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5 Comments


  1. I believe his name should be spelled Eddie Gallaher. I believe he worked at WTOP in Washington in the 1940’s and 1950’s when they played music.

    Reply

  2. I just read somewhere where Eddie Gallaher was with WTOP until 1968 when they switched to a news format and he went tom WASH_FM.

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  3. Eddy was a legend, and actually replaced Arthur Godfrey when Godfrey left WTOP to go to the CBS Radio Network. Eddy worked at WTOP, WASH, and finally at WWDC, playing big band tunes til the end.

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  4. Eddie Gallaher was at WTOP, playing MOR music, before it went all-news. After Metromedia bought WASH the station’s GM, Bill Dalton, made the brilliant decision to hire Eddie as the morning jock. Eddie had a fabulous connection to Wash, DC and Washingtonians. He made an immediate connection with WASH’s 25-49 target audience and helped bring WASH to the top in that demo.

    Ed Tobias
    WASH Newsman and then News Director
    1973 – 1978

    Reply

  5. I REMEMBER, VERY FONDLY, EDDIE GALLAHER ON WTOP WITH “THE SUNDIAL”,
    “THE MOONDIAL MATINEE” & “THE MOONDIAL” IN THE 50’s. HAD AN OCCASSION
    TO MEET THIS FINE GENTLEMAN WHEN HE WAS AT WWDC. ONE OF THE BEST
    BROADCASTERS I EVER HEARD.

    Reply

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