Who knows what became of this 1970’s FM competitor in the Windy City? Certainly, there’s plenty of personality on 95.5 FM (including ol’ Captain Whammo aka Jim Channel), but the jingles in use are probably the worst ever heard in contemporary radio. I suppose that would be unique enough to keep an audience, but one would think that MET had enough personality playing the hits to give WLS a run for its money. Not being from Chicago, I know next to nothing about WMET other than it existed and that Captain Whammo went on to become a preacher with his own ministry sometime after his MET days.
Come to think of it, the jingles and top 40 approach seems similar to the John Long sound at X-Rock 80 down in Juarez, Mexico… minus the cutsey Mexican female voice 🙂
This composite runs approximately 46 minutes scoped. Its in mono, but pretty clean sounding considering it’s now 31 years old as of this writing. 31 years! wow, was high school that long ago?
10 thoughts on “Composite: 95 1/2 WMET Chicago | March 1977”
Steve, this link is not working! The player comes up but does nothing.
All fixed. I forgot to put the link in the playbutton. Thanks for pointing it out.
Awesome aircheck. I remember Captain Whammo. Listen close to this aircheck and you’ll hear a mistake. Jim Channel say “DHF”- well they must have just made the call letter change and old habits die hard. I feel like I’m 17 years old and listening to my radio. Thanks for submitting and posting. YOU ROCK!
The call letters were WDHF. The station was sold to Metromedia and thus the call letter change. Wow I caught a little snipped of Larry Robinson “The Diamond Man” in this aircheck, Haven’t heard him in ages!
Actually they’d already been owned by Metromedia since around 1973. Tried a full-service AC format first, then flipped to CHR. Shortly after changing calls to WMET, they did another format change, to AOR/Classic Rock, going up against WLUP and WXRT. Chicago’s answer to LA’s KMET. The lightning bolt logo depicted is actually from the that era.
Dave Alpert was one half of the WDHF/WMET news staff and I was the other half for most of the time that I did news at the station, February 1977-April 1978, after being hired as a weekend DJ in the fall of ’76. Gary Price was our program director — not someone from Juarez, to be sure — and with the exception of Whammo, most on-air voices were kept on a pretty tight leash. We were dead serious about taking on WLS, although Metromedia ran us on the cheap; WCFL had left the Top 40 fray in March of ’76. (When I ran contests on weekends a lot of the time all I had to give away was a station T-shirt.) I’m not afraid to admit it; my pay as a weekend DJ was $6 an hour, and I made $205 a week in the newsroom.
The call letter change occurred 12/1/76, and on-air DJ F.J. Bailey blew the calls on his first set after the official change (a big production, by the way)! Nothing else changed. FM Top 40 competition arrived while I worked at ‘DHF from WEFM, which had been classical before that and was the oldest licensed FM station in the country — Zenith getting the license in 1940. It was a heck of a place to break into major market radio, though. Other WDHF/WMET voices included Greg Brown, who is on WLS-FM today and Bill Taylor, who became Bill Fortune and has been on a number of Chicago stations since. Gary Price became program director of oldies WJMK for a number of years, doing fill-in work there just as he did at WDHF/WMET, and remains a Chicago-based freelance voiceover talent. Jim Summers became a programmer also, owned Pilot Communications in the early-mid ’90s, sold the chain, got wistful for radio, and is back in the game.
I was never wistful for radio…infected by it is probably more apropos. DHF/MET was amazing while an undergrad at Northwestern
DJ, Larry actually owned KWK AM & FM in St. Louis for a couple of years in the ’80’s, after he purchased the stations from Doubleday. Problem was, he hired the wrong people (from KSHE) to operate the stations. Not long after that, KWK was sold to another group.
Steve, this link is not working! The player comes up but does nothing. Sunday August 15 2010 7:05 PM Chicago time
It’s interesting how mellow Greg Brown sounds on the station that seemed to have the image enforced by Whammo of jocks screaming “BOOGIE!” all the time. (Also, of course, referred to by many as “WCFL-FM” because it used a lot of Jack McCoy-approved music beds and stings for promos along with the nighttime screamers–and at the tail end of the format the famous TM Shockwave shotguns.) This package is TM’s Synergy and I liked it (although the edits Price did here are a little strange), especially the hour open cut.