610 KFRC San Francisco: The End of Top 40 | August 11, 1986; 3:00 – 6:00 AM

Public affairs programming ends and overnight jock Jack Silver picks up where the station always did at 3am – playing the best music. Only, on this particular morning, the playlist is opened up all the way back to 1955. Its the final show of Rock & Roll music on KFRC. The Big 610 was about to be put to sleep and it fell to Jack Silver to nail it down with class.

Phone lines are opened and San Francisco listeners pour their hearts out in saying goodbye to a station they grew up with, and stayed with through the 80s. Perhaps there was never an AM station to match either the personality or the popularity that KFRC had. Right up to the end, it was a class act.

At 6am, the curtain closed on three decades of Top 40 music with a song that seemed so appropriate. Journey’s “Lights” brought the house down and tied together KFRC’s years as the station the Bay Area grew up with. The song was also used in promotions on KFRC-TV. In some ways the double meaning would have significance.

KFRC would turn to playing music of a different era, one that was actually closer to Dr. Don Rose’s heart than most people imagined. As “Magic 61”, KFRC would play non-Rock hits from the Big Band era… in Stereo, from the few recordings which existed that allowed Stereo fidelity. And while Magic 61 was not The Big 610, it would go on to create a legacy of its own which would last into the 1990s until the format itself was finally found to be no longer commercially viable. But that’s a story for another time. Eventually, The Big 610 would return to the stage, this time sporting a brand new FM signal. We’ll explain that story down the road. For now, listen to the end… the FIRST time, of the Big 610, KFRC.