Detroit/Windsor

Taylor and Clark on WKNR Detroit | January 7, 1968

We suspect that Steve Taylor and Gene Clark recorded this show right off the board… in fact, they say that they will record all their shows from now on right at the start of this superb recording. Interestingly enough, they say they will no longer say any words that offend the audience… hmmm, you mean there were shock jocks in 1968? This is a very interesting aircheck for several reasons. First, it’s a broadcast quality aircheck of the morning show on WKNR (not too many of those around), and second, you get to hear about what’s going on in the world in ’68. It may not sound like it going back in this wonderful submission, but 1968 was a VERY long time ago!

Steve Robbins, WKNR “Keener 13” Detroit | January 1967

Not too many Keener airchecks floating around these days but here’s one in incredible audio fidelity! Right off the master reel is a composite of Steve Robbins, not heard anywhere else. Keener was Detroit’s ‘other’ Top 40 station, always in the shadow of CKLW across the river in Windsor Ontario, but WKNR had a very loyal following, especially in the mid-60s before CKLW literally ruled the airwaves of the Motor City!

QuickCheck: “Ted Richards, 800 CKLW (“The Big 8”) Windsor | May 1974

Seals & Crofts are in concert on May 28, The Beach Boys have a new album out, and Teddy Bear Richards counts down the bottom five songs on the CKLW all-time top 500! CKLW today is has a News/Talk format which is programmed entirely for the Canadian audience in Windsor, Ontario. However, in 1974, the hits were aimed straight for the other side of the international border. After all, “Motown” wasn’t just a genre of pop music or a record label, it was everything that encompassed (and what still does) Detroit, Michigan! Since it’s May, and there are still so many fans of The Big 8 and Teddy Bear Richards on both sides of the border, lets have a quick slice of history!

Composite: CKLW-FM 94 Windsor Ont. | 1988

Here’s another one we have to make an educated guess as to the year. This was the short-lived recreation of the Big 8 – on FM! Judging from my trip to Detroit in the early 90s, I remember this station and it really DID sound good. One of the very few Oldies stations to effectively recreate the original sound of their AM (KFRC 99.7 TRIED, we’ll give them credit), CKLW brought just about everything back except all the old jocks. Imagine, trying to make new jocks sound like they did at 800 on the dial in 1974. Well, they did it here. Listen for CKLW 20/20 News – one can almost expect Byron McGregor to be anchor!

Chuck McKay, CKLW Windsor | February 1975

…”I am a radio star…” If you listen to this closely, you’ll notice that Chuck McKay is returning to CKLW after some time at WLS Chicago (his words). But is this any way to return? He acts like he’s leaving again, and talks about being fired while on the air! This is the classic what not to do in a top 40 format… because the format is trashed 2 minutes into this show! No jingles are heard on this recording, but that is about right, since the Drake days have been over at the Big 8 for some time now. McKay does some name dropping… Byron McGregor, etc… and thanks mom for convincing him to go back to CKLW.

WXYZ News Covers the Detroit Civil Rights Riots | July, 1967

Those who forget history are doomed to repeat it. The city of Detroit, Michigan turned into a battleground in July, 1967 after city police raided an ‘unlicenced’, after-hours bar on what is now called Rosa Parks Boulevard, in the wee hours of July 23rd. As the situation became more tense, Governor George Romney called in the National Guard, and then President Lyndon B. Johnson ordered the U.S. Army into Detroit to quell the violence. It ended up being one of the costliest and most destructive riots in U.S. history. At the end of five days of guerilla warfare, 43 lay dead, 463 injured and several thousands of others were under arrest. Large parts of Detroit were in ruins. View a NewsReel of the 1967 Riots Listen to history as it happened, as described by ABC (network) News repor...

Mort Crowley resigns on air from WKNR (Keener 13) Detroit | March, 1964

“…Only a fool would work under these conditions” Its a rainy, cold morning in the Motor City, and station management has left a memo to the morning guy … he can only use one phone line for his show because the phone company is concerned about too many listeners calling in. So what does he do? What any responsible air personality would do… This is Mort Crowley, first aircheck of him for this website, so it’s really quite a catch! This came to us on cassette from the ‘annonymous’ contributor (we know who he is but he made us promise to keep his name a secret). The audio quality is superb, considering the year of this broadcast!

CKLW Windsor/Detroit “Million Dollar Weekend” | 1976

CKLW may have been Canadian, but it was likely the most creative and best station in the RKO chain. It’s also likely that the period of 1970-1976 was probably the height of “The BIG 8”. CKLW was a 50,000 watt music blowtorch covering most of Eastern North America… and it catered to interests in Detroit as well as to it’s own Canadian listeners. Today, however, this is known as “The Information Station” and primarilly serves the Canadian side of the boarder only. If only Canada’s CTRC knew the monster that was created way back when had the power to affect people thousands of miles away… well perhaps they did know. Either way, the CanCon rules enacted in the 70s may have helped Canadian artists, but it did spell doom for CKLW– as th...

Pat St. John’s last show on WKNR Detroit

Here’s something that Matt at Big Apple Airchecks sent in. Apparently directly from Pat St. John himself, this is a ‘reconstructed’, mostly scoped aircheck of Pat’s last show on Keener 13 before he moved on to then AOR 95.5 WPLJ New York.

Jeff Goodrich, 93.1 WDRQ Detroit | 1972

Contributor Paul Ford sent this in a while back… it’s 1972 and DRQ is airing The Last … Contest. Certainly wasn’t the last contest ever aired on WDRQ, nor anywhere else, but the contest voicers sound the same no matter what station it was done on (can you say KCBQ?). The audio quality on this is fair. The jock’s name – Jeff Goodrich, part of the early Top 40 staff of WDRQ after their launch as the nation’s first All-News FM station in 1971. That failed miserably, but if it were done today… well well well, probably would have a winner on their hands, who knows. This is a real classic for your listening pleasure!

Motor City Gold – Detroit-Area Radio, Circa 1971, Part 2

In October of 2004, in our second year on the web, we posted a series of aircheck tapes entitled “Old Gold”. The series was called that based upon one of the Oldies formats at one of the Detroit area stations. There were 12 actual tapes in the series, but for some odd reason we only posted six. And we had consolidated four of what we though were only 10 tapes into the six that we posted. Recently, I came across two envelopes containing two more of these Detroit area scopes. The tapes are old, dusty and the oxide is worn off much of the tape surface. But they do play, and we’re now going to present these final two Gold tapes in a four part series that we’d like to call, “Motor City Gold” You’ll hear plenty of banter, bits of news, commercials and lo...

Motor City Gold – Detroit-Area Radio, Circa 1971, Part 1

In October of 2004, in our second year on the web, we posted a series of aircheck tapes entitled “Old Gold”. The series was called that based upon one of the Oldies formats at one of the Detroit area stations. There were 12 actual tapes in the series, but for some odd reason we only posted six. And we had consolidated four of what we though were only 10 tapes into the six that we posted. Recently, I came across two envelopes containing two more of these Detroit area scopes. The tapes are old, dusty and the oxide is worn off much of the tape surface. But they do play, and we’re now going to present these final two Gold tapes in a four part series that we’d like to call, “Motor City Gold” You’ll hear plenty of banter, bits of news, commercials and lo...

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