William B. Williams Farewell; Bob Jones, WNEW 1130 New York, Part 1 | August 3, 1986


Somewhere, in some vault, there is a master recording of this tribute to the late William B. Williams. But, for this website dedicated to classic radio, perhaps it’s better that we present the following original ‘off the air’ recording, made by Contributor Ira Warren Patasnik on a simple table radio..
CORRECTION (10/27/10) – Our Contributor actually has a nice recording setup, as he contacted Airchexx to describe;

“I recorded it off a Technics by Panasonic FM/AM Stereo Receiver SA 300
that was 30 watts per channel and recorded it on a JVC KD-W7 Stereo Double
Cassette Deck Recorder at Normal Speed in DNR Dolby Noise Reduction.”

Nice. We’ve got something similar here at the Airchexx studio. Thanks for the correction.

WNEW Staff Photo from 1958 - Look for a young William B. Williams center right of photo

We received several tapes from our Contributor recently, along with an enclosed letter:

It is with great pleasure that I send you the following tapes on Bob Jones’ Tribute to William B. Williams from WNEW Metromedia Radio 1130 in New York on the day William B. Williams died, August 3, 1986.

Obituary from NY Times, 8/3/86

“William B. Williams, the radio personality of four decades who never wavered in his commitment to the old favorites of popular music, died yesterday at Beth Israel Medical Center in Manhattan after a long illness. He was 62 years old. A hospital spokesman said that Mr. Williams died of acute anemia and respiratory failure. Associates said he had suffered from a congenital blood disease and was hospitalized several weeks ago for removal of his spleen. Last year, Mr. Williams underwent surgery for cancer of the colon.”

This recording begins sometime at the start of Bob Jones’ fill-in show in the “Morning Report with the Chairman of the Board”. The whole program is a tribute to William B. Williams, and features recordings of Mr. Williams’ best shows, with guests like Frank Sinatra and Nat King Cole.

For us to write more on our own about this great man, and this legendary radio station, would only lessen its importance. All you must do, is listen.


  1. Peter Duggan

    Willie B died 26 years ago. He was irreplaceable then and remains so today. The picture from WNEW in 1958 was I believe an advertisement displayed throughout the NY city subway system. I remember each distinctive voice as if it were yesterday. To this day in 2011 I miss them all but most of all William B. He was a true original “of which there will be no whicher.”

  2. Harry

    I was in my twenties, now 69 years old, but will never forget the day Nat King Cole passed away, and William B. vowed to never let a day pass in his career without playing a least one recording of Nat King Cole. Willie B kept his promise, and dignified his admiration for one of Americas greatest singers. Willie B was a special part of my youth with his kind voice, and persona. He was so much more than a “disc jockey”.

  3. kenny lucas

    I remember WNEW and William B. Williams. He alway’s starte with ” Hello World”

  4. John

    I listened to WNEW AM 1130 from 1970 to the end in December 1992. Loved William B. Williams. This is a beautiful tribute to him. Does anyone know how I can obtain a copy of this on CD so I can listen to it on my stereo?

  5. Kevin L. Sealy

    Growing up listening to WNEW 1130 all through out my formative (teen) years in the 1970s, William B. Williams was a true radio personality that put a smile in your heart. A true legend he was.

  6. Jose R. Gonzalez

    I have the pleasure of meeting Guillermo B. Guillermo a few times he used to rent car from kinney rent a car and I work there . He was such a nice person. WNEW 1130 WAS THE ONLY STATION i’LL LISTEN TO. god bless all of them for making my life enrich by the likes of composer Cole Porter arrange by Nelson Riddle played by Count Bassie and sang by the chairman of the board mr. Francis Albert Sinatra.
    The most wonderful radio station in the world WNEW 1130 IN NEW YORK

    • Yes, Jose, WNEW was really something special. Its too bad that 1130 has been all Stock Market all the time for going on 20 years now. The honorable Mayor Bloomberg put Business Radio on the air, and then the Standards format moved to 1560 for many years. And the story of THAT station was beautiful as well. A group purchased the station from, I believe, the New York Times, which had been programming Classical on 1560 as WQXR. They changed the call letters to WQEW, reflecting the Classical heritage of WQXR, and the standards format they were going to put on the frequency to honor the legacy that was WNEW Eleven Three Oh.

      And so, ever since Disney, which owned ABC at the time, purchased 1560 AM, Standards has essentially been completely absent from the Big Apple airwaves. A few rimshot signals have tried the format but for the past decade, music of any kind has been hard to find on the AM dial. But thats the story in a quick nutshell. And were this 1985, I’d have to agree with you, I’d be GLUED to WNEW for music that is truly timeless, and personalities who were better at their craft than I could only dream about being. Thanks for adding your voice!

  7. Ok, I paid $35.00 to download this from the download menu above and now I can’t find the file on blocplay. Is this a scam?

    • I have no idea what you are referring to. There are no downloads on Airchexx.com, and there is no fee whatsoever to listen to airchecks here. I strongly suspect you’ve been scammed from another website, and somehow you landed here.

  8. Glenn Crespo

    William B.Williams….there was no one better, a class act. I worked at WNEW from 1977 to 1992 and it was a sad day when Willie passed away and it was as several of the employees felt,the beginning of the end. To this day, I miss working there.

  9. Larry

    WNEW wrote the book on how standards should be presented and programmed.

    They had the best personalities. One of the first that comes to mind is William B. Williams.

    I heard Frank Sinatra for the first time when I was five years old. It was just after I got turned on to radio and while dialing around, I discovered WNEW. At that point, I was hooked on this once great medium and that radio station.

    Unfortunately Bob Jones who hosted this tribute died a few years ago. Like William B. Williams, he too was a great broadcaster.

    He worked at both WNEW and WQEW.

    Thanks for posting this tribute to William B. Williams. It’s great to hear it and remember WNEW Metro Media Radio in New York.

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