Ken Gilbert, 102.1 WAQY Wacky 102 Springfield | 1980
WAQY used to air a Top 40 format using the brand name “Wacky 102”. What started out in the mid-70s as an automated format with no DJs evolved into a personality oriented station that by 1980 was live 24/7. Some of the names heard on Wacky 102 during this period were Glen “FM” Stevens, Mike Adams, Jim Kaye “The Big Tuna” and Ken Gilbert. The station used just two sets of jingle packages from 1975-1981, and for most of that time, just one shotgun Wacky 102 jingle and a sung Top hour ID. Starting around 1980, jingles were dropped for a time and the air personalities did a live spoken ID each hour. Jingles returned for 1981 prior to the station’s flip to AOR in August of that year.
Ken Gilbert had the afternoon drive 3-7pm. Gilbert was and still is a very funny man. You can hear his sense of humor and impeccable timing during this 18 minute scoped aircheck taken from the WAQY studio skimmer machine. Ken Gilbert would go on to do nights and weekends on WDRC AM and FM Hartford, then move north, with stints on WKNE-FM Keene NH and WZRT Rutland VT. He is currently the afternoon drive host on 92.1 WVTK Middlebury VT, south of Burlington.
This aircheck came from Ken Gilbert himself, who gave it to his longtime friend, contributor Paul DiMarco. The tape is in excellent condition, as heard here. There’s virtually no tape hiss, and while I’ve tried to clean up some of the pops from the skimmer tape when it turned on and off with the mic opening and closing, some of that is still in there. It shouldn’t detract from the overall listening experience.
ABOUT THE CONTRIBUTOR
Paul DiMarco is a longtime broadcaster, who today is the owner of the online “Totally 70s Radio Network” This is not associated with Totally 70s on SiriusXM Radio. He has recorded hundreds of airchecks over the years, and also holds Ken Gilbert’s aircheck collection along with several other well-known New England jocks.
Click below to hear an audio-only aircheck in our custom player.
Click below to watch this video from our Official YouTube Channel