A Sample of Automated 98.5 WROR Boston | October, 1972

Photo courtesy Ralph Stephenson on Flicker

The WROR Boston automation system, pictured at left, was once known as “Arco-Mattic”, the shy but friendly robot back when the station had the call letters WRKO-FM. Here, the system selected WROR’s Oldies music using a teletype-keyboard terminal and the program itself loaded into auto’s ‘brain’ via paper tape reader. U.S. Navy Radiomen would know what I’m referring to.

Despite this station’s heritage, there really are very few recordings available. Contributor Russ Oasis dug up this very short piece of audio. He said about it,

“I wish I had more WROR for you, but this is all I could salvage. I believe it to be from 10/72”.

To listen, click the BIG BLUE BUTTON below.

Interestingly enough, from 1970 until RKO General took 98.5 live-assist in 1980, this was a fairly popular Boston station. Longtime personality Joe Martelle did “Saturday Night Live at the Oldies” for over 25 years, spanning the Automated Oldies era, through the AC, CHR and Hot AC era. I’ve always found it odd that there was so little audio available.


Steve West is a 39 year veteran of broadcasting. His air work as a Jock and News Anchor includes six radio markets and over two-dozen radio stations. Steve currently works on-air for the Super Radio USA media group out of Minnesota. Steve is the founder of the Airchexx Media Group and manages Airchexx.com and Airchexx Live - the official station of Airchexx.

Composite: 1510 WMEX Boston | October 4-5, 1972

Despite a signal which radiated mostly out over the Atlantic Ocean, the format and 50,000 watts of hit music power is memorable to many from the classic era of Top 40 radio!

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