Pittsburgh

Mike McGann, 1250 WTAE Pittsburgh | December, 1973

Date of Recording: 12.1973 (Exact Date Unknown) Station: 1250 WTAE Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA Featured Air Talent: Mike McGann Contributor: Mike McGann Airchexx Entry: 1,451 “Nostalgia Radio. Playin’ it like it was with Roy Orbison!” Comments: Fake or real Drake formatics and jingles abound in this short scope provided by and of Contributor Mike McGann. The station’s imaging voice is none other than Charlie Van Dyke. It’s pretty straight forward and a tight presentation overall. Listen about halfway in to a promo for Byron McGregor’s “The Americans”. Don’t forget that this was a commentary from the legendary Canadian broadcaster which was turned into a single and played on a number of radio stations across North America in 1973. Very...

Mike McGann, 96.1 WXKX Pittsburgh | 1982

Date of Recording: 1982 (Exact date unknown) Station: 96.1 WXKX Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA Featured Air Talent: Mike McGann (WIXZ, WXKX) Contributor: Mike McGann Airchexx Entry: 1,450 Comments: We can’t pin down the exact date of this scope but essentially, its from sometime in 1982. The recording itself was pretty good quality, we only did some light processing. The aircheck was already scoped down by it’s Contributor.

Marco Polo, WKTQ Pittsburgh | May 28, 1973

Date of Recording: May 28, 1973 Station: 1320 WKTQ Pittsburgh Featured Air Talent: Marco Polo Contributor: Robyn Watts Aircheck Entry: 1,413 Comments: How many stations used an approach similar to this one in the early to mid 70s? WKTQ is branded here as The New 13Q. “Don’t Say Hello, say I Listen to the New Sound of 13Q”. And if you do, you win MONEY! Well, yes. One can compare this to WAVZ New Haven around the same time and hear a nearly identical approach. The jock is Marco Polo, although we don’t know his real name… or maybe that IS his real name! This is 5 minutes long but the quality is so good you’ll think you’re hearing it for the first time on a widebanded receiver!

Lonnie Davis, Bumper Morgan & Ray Davis, WWSW 3WS AM/FM Pittsburgh

While the audio is perfectly normal for a typical Oldies outlet in the Steel City, there’s some mystique surrounding a radio station which there’s no date printed on the recording. We hear Bumper Morgan once, Lonnie Davis once, and a promo for Bill Worthington, but otherwise this is a rather ho-hum run of the mill Oldies station. The AM side of this aircheck is on 970 and now apparently is doing some other format, the FM is 94.5 and is still doing oldies… well, Classic Hits today.

Johnny Williams, WTAE Pittsburgh | 1976

Date of Recording: 1976 (exact date unknown) Contributor: Tom Lacko Station(s): WTAE 1250, WTAE-FM 96.1 Featured Jock: Johnny Williams Aircheck Entry: 1,394 Comments: Donated to our archives over ten years ago, Contributor Tom Lacko sent in this recording that he entitled “WTAE Transitions to 96 KX”. Indeed, this does sound like format change day on the FM side of this simulcast of 96.1 FM / 1250 AM. The change happened at 6pm at the conclusion of the Johnny Williams show. Unfortunately, we don’t have an exact date for the format change but it is known that just before the change, the FM side would separate from the AM and play Disco all night long. The format change brought a Rock Leaning Top 40 format and the call letters WXKX. The station has been airing a CHR format e...

Jerry Kristafer, 96.9 WFFM “FM 97” Braddock (Pittsburgh) PA | February, 1981

From Contributor Robyn Watts, here’s our first aircheck of Jerry Kristopher (WKCI, WDRC-FM), and he’s not in the Hartford, Connecticut market! In a sense, this is sort of a boring aircheck. FM 97, not much of a slogan in and of itself, is solidly an Adult Contemporary station. Perhaps the station was trying to find its way. In 1981, FM was just coming into its own and many stations didn’t quite know which way to go formatically. Those which didn’t go CHR or Country or AOR were lost in the shuffle for a time. Perhaps this is what happened to WFFM. The station has been gone for so long, there’s not even an original logo scan out there anywhere. Today, it’s Variety Hits 96.9 “Bob-FM”. After all, who needs disc jockeys? Aircheck #1,252 since May ...

Herb Crow, WWSW “3WS” Pittsburgh | October 8, 1980

Here’s another station from the Steel City which hasn’t got much exposure. “3WS” is apparently still around, although we’re not sure what format its running these days. The tape at hand was sent in by Robyn Watts. It highlights 3WS as an Oldies station in October of 1980. It sounds like the morning show, Herb Crow is very personable. Interestingly enough, the 3WS jingles are one of the JAM WABC cuts and while the jingles sound GOOD, its a little wierd hearing “MusicRadio 3WS” in an Oldies format. Just sayin’. Aircheck #1,252 since May 2, 2002>/center>

Bob Gray, 1320 WKTQ Pittsburgh | 1977

Contributor Rob Grayson is understandably proud to say he was part of Cecil Heftel’s WKTQ Pittsburgh. Known as 13Q, a Top 40 powerhouse created by Buzz Bennett, this station was a major force in the market through much of the 1970s. Here’s what the airstaff of 13Q looked like during the station’s golden years. (Courtesy of Jeff Roteman’s 13Q Tribute website) This is so tightly scoped down you have to listen closely or you’ll miss something. You have to admit, from what you hear of the playlist, 13Q was a real Rocker! From Abba to Kansas and everything in between, the station was exciting to listen to! Here’s a lesson in how to do Top 40 radio the right way!

Rolling Stones “Voodoo Lounge” Pre-Concert Broadcast, 102.5 WDVE Pittsburgh | September 29, 1994

This came to us on CD about ten years ago, cut up into 21 tracks and mastered from the original source tape. The Rolling Stones were in the middle of their biggest U.S. Concert tour of their career, the “Steel Wheels” tour, promoting their then-new album of the same name. When Mick Jaggar and company came to Pittsburgh, they played the biggest arena – Three Rivers Stadium, and the city’s biggest Album Rock station came out to greet the band with a live broadcast from the event itself. On air and behind the scenes WDVE staffers set up outside and inside the stadium and did interviews with the public, handed out plenty of station swag and turned a big concert into a huge on air event! This recording captures the pre-concert party atmosphere on air, as WDVE wove interv...

Rick Allen, 98.3 WESA-FM Charleroi PA

Here’s another from our single-largest Contributor to date, Robyn Watts. Before this station’s move to Duquesne PA in suburban Pittsburgh, this was a somewhat lower powered rimshot signal. For many years, this was a partial simulcast with its daytime only AM station, WESA. WESA-FM was branded “Class-FM” and at the time of this recording was Adult Contemporary. Unfortunately, we can’t pin down an exact date but it appears to have been recorded in the late 1980 or early 1990s. Later, in 1998, 98.3 would change formats to Top 40 and change call letters to WZKT. The station was sold to Keymarket Communications in 2000 and they in turn, changed the format again, this time to Country music. The call letters changed to WOGI to reflect a catchy monniker that stuck for...

QuickChexx: Larry Richards, 96.1 WHTX Pittsburgh

Does anyone suppose that there’s such a thing as a dead frequency? How about a ‘failed’ frequency? Okay, lets completely rephrase this. Just how many times, do you suppose, does one radio station need to change format and call letters until the respective owners find one that manages to grab and keep and audience and ratings? Since 1960, 96.1 in Pittsburgh has had EIGHT different call letters and even more formats. Perhaps the most successful of the 20th century was the Country format with the calls WXKX, “96 Kicks”. The station seems to have hit its stride since 2000, with a CHR format known as “Kiss 96.9”. Enough history. Okay, we’re all about history… Confused yet? This is very short, just over two minutes and includes a couple of br...

Suzie Barber, 96.9 WMYG Braddock PA (Pittsburgh) | 1990

Another from longtime Contributor Robyn Watts, this is a 5 minute scope of Classic Rocker WMYG Pittsburgh, known on air as “Magic 97 FM – Home of the Classic Tracks“. The station’s history describes WMYG as really beginning as Soft Rock formatted WFFM. The station played Soft Rock during the day, but beginning in 1985 started playing Classic Rock 7pm- Midnight*, then, in 1986 flipped to Classic Rock full time and picked up the WMYG calls. Pittsburgh listeners will likely remember more details than were available on the web and we invite visitor comments to complete the history of this radio station. The featured jock is Suzie Barber. Since 2005, 96.9 has been Variety Hits WRRK “Bob-FM 96.9” * Source: Wikipedia.

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