1450 AM San Francisco, KSOL, KSAN, Sly Stone, Urban, Soul

Sly Stone, KSOL San Francisco | 1967


Big Apple Airchecks Matt Seinberg New York TradersKSOL (the original incarnation) was an AM station in San Francisco on 1450. AM 1450 was known as KSAN until July 1964, when the KSOL calls were first used. As KSAN, the station had devoted much time to ‘soul’ music, and the change to KSOL meant a change to full time Soul music as a 24/7 format, the first such format in America.

The Soul format would continue until 1970.

Most notable on this aircheck is Sly Stone. Before becoming a music sensation, he was a Deejay on KSOL. Here he is, doing the Soul Music format in much the same manner as many of the Top 40 stations of the 1960s. In fact, KSOL featured all the same program elements as it’s Top 40 counterparts, such as jingles, time checks and lightning fast personalities. Sly Stone fit in exceptionally well here. We wish there was more of this recording available, along with some clips of others on the station so that we could get a true representation of what KSOL sounded like throughout the broadcast day.

This website has been contacted by people connected with Sly Stone’s tribute website, as early material from Sly’s career is difficult to come by. We’re thrilled to offer this, the only known aircheck of Sly Stone, the disc jockey! Welcome fans! Please leave your comments below!

1450 AM San Francisco, KSOL, KSAN, Sly Stone, Urban, Soul


Courtesy of Big Apple Airchecks in New York City


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.


March 9, 2005 at 6:54 pm

The KSOL heard here is the original station at 1450 khz., broadcasting from San Francisco with 1000 watts of soul power. (It is currently KEST, “Personal Growth Radio.”) The Sly Stone-era KSOL was no relation to the later 107.7 KSOL-FM (down the Peninsula in San Mateo) or the current Spanish-language 98.9/99.1 KSOL-FM (Estéreo Sol, based in SF).


    June 15, 2009 at 11:39 pm

    I would like to know if this station plays the same songs as KSOL 107.7 use to play in the seventies. I missed that

      steve prinz
      September 2, 2011 at 11:11 am

      i used to listen to KSOL in the 70s first time i heard more bounce to the ounce from the ZAPP BAND to cool 107.7 KSOL very cool.

doc walker
March 15, 2005 at 2:31 am

my god milt jackson …..the vibe god…… come on folks let’s just stand up for that…….sly stone…..show prep for sly was the same as in the capitol of soul ……a cup of coffee and herbel jazz smoke!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
the doc knows

Jeff H
April 21, 2005 at 12:37 am

Cool, I have an old LP album, apparently produced by the radio station, original station logo on the label, and pressed on yellow vinyl. “Soul Over The City, KSOL 1450 AM” Is on the label, never knew of having a cover for it, got it from a friend about 18 years ago. The songs are even mixed on the album. Pretty cool music too.

February 13, 2006 at 4:01 am

Great aircheck of Sly. While this site is free, the Reel Radio.com aircheck of Mr. Stewart requires a paid subscription, which I happily contributed. I’m glad both airchecks are different. The Malt Liquor ads are ever-present, with Sylvester acting in one commercial. What a talent. I am looking for great Sly Stone stories for SlyStone.com….Amir

Jeff K
March 3, 2006 at 12:42 am

my god i stumbled onto this site with a little help from google.com, when sly was on ksol i was probably 11 or 12, we use to listen to the show almost religiously at night. i always liked when sly said yessss lawd. and before kdia he had a piano in the studio. I visited Ksol once when i was 14, sly was long gone then, but i think the dj name was Ronnie Dark, anyway that was, for me 40 years ago…
Jeff in Colorado

Jeff in Colorado, originally from Vallejo, Berkeley and Oakland Calif

March 11, 2006 at 4:56 am

8 solid minutes of a lifetime in a lifetime for a lifetime throughout a lifetime over and under above and beyond and back again taking us backwards and forwards and right on into another mind-bending experience of ORIGINALITY. I TRULY THANK YOU PROFESSOR SLY STONE – YOUR CLASS WAS A BLAST.

April 10, 2006 at 3:53 pm

This web sit is off the hook! To hear Sly Stone flow was great! I am currently writing a profile on him for Black Music Month so to be able to hear that air check was off the hook. I will pass this link along to the jocks of the old school legends I know many who have air checks so that they can contribute. I will also send the link to new school radio personalities so they can hear what it was all about and take a tip from the pro’s who paved they way. Thank You

Leo Knott
October 1, 2007 at 6:58 pm

I thought Sly gave a good performance and would be comparable today in radio. Certainly sounded good for 67 — like before his time.

Eric Mobley
January 11, 2008 at 12:42 am

WOW!!!! Sly Stone on the radio in ’67!!!!! What a blast!!!! I am a real Sly fan….this incredible history here folks….you can feel the funk flow in his vioce even back then….WOW!!! A real piece of history here folks!

January 17, 2008 at 2:53 pm

Now that brings back some great memories. I worked with Sly(“Grease” as I refered to him) at K-SOL from 1966-1968. He didn’t wear earphones when he worked, he would use the audio coming from the speakers in the production room… He always gave the same temperature every night of 59 degrees. I have’t talked to him sometime, but I do stay in touch with Ronnie Dark…Thanx for putting Sly on your site, and do you have a aircheck on Hank Spann I worked with him at WAOK in Atlanta.

jane weems
January 28, 2008 at 5:14 pm

in response to jeff h. i, too, had this album since the 60’s…the original cover was a photograph of an old console style stereo, placed upon a hilltop, with a panoramic view of the city of san francisco behind it!…lost the cover in the 60’s ( it was a hand-me-down from my older brothers) but, kept the record for years, until i had to move away!…wish i could get a CD dub of that great record!…[email protected] thanks!

jane weems
January 28, 2008 at 5:18 pm

how about “K-D-I-AAAAA, lucky 13, double-goldennnnnn!”

March 30, 2008 at 12:42 am

Jane Weems, did you go to horace mann middle school?

April 21, 2008 at 1:47 am

REmember the Dedications on KSOL..Ronnie DArk became
Johnny Morris on KDIA.
There was a second Soul over the City Album.
I was a kid but met Ronnie Dark at a Smoker Robinson and the miracles concert at the Civic Auotorium in Sf.. oh yea marth and the Vandellas were there too

Anita Locashio
May 12, 2008 at 2:30 pm

I have that album with da cover too. I need a converter to record,the album to CD…any ideas? rentals?anitalenor/San Mateo Ca.

    April 17, 2009 at 7:04 pm

    I just got done converting mine, but was in rough shape as the cover has been missing for years, since it was given to me. If your copy is in good shape we could work something out, I have the equipment to convert from LP or 45 to CD on my computer.

Johnny Morris
May 13, 2008 at 4:46 am

As Ronnie Dark on KSOL-AM, It was great listening to Sly’s aircheck. We worked together from 1964 to 1967. We had a lot of fun back then. He is so talented. KSOL was his first radio gig!Even though the stint was short, KDIA was cool too. By the way I’m pictured as one of the jock’s on the KSOL Soul over the city Vol. 1 LP. To Thomas, thanks for the mention. Marvin Gaye was the headline act that night at the S.F. Civic Auditorium.
I’ve got some great Sly Stone stories!

    September 17, 2009 at 2:34 pm

    Is this the famous Johnny Morris who worked at KDIA when my good friend and mentor Harry Jeffery was at KSOL? You are a legend based on the great stories Harry told me about your engineering feats. Feel free to contact me via my website so I can unite the two of you. //edutainmentandconvergence.vox.com or doc chris on Facebook

    November 17, 2009 at 11:21 am

    Johnny – I used to listen to KSOL and KDIA all the time when I lived in SF in 1973 and 1974. One song I’ve been trying to remember but can’t find and it’s been plaguing me for decades – both stations played it alot! It had a sitar effect on the guitar in between the verses, was kind of slow, and I think the chorus went something like “There’s a river in the valley, that runs through the hearts of everyone…” Anyway, it was real catchy and I’d love to find out who did it! Any ideas?

      December 15, 2009 at 12:27 pm

      since i wrote this I found out the song was “River” by Eugene McDaniels but the one played on KSOL and/or KDIA wasn’t his version he put out as Universal Jones in 1972 on the MGM/Verve label nor was it the 1973 version by Joe Simon which also used an electric sitar – no, the version I remember was slower. Does anyone remember who did that version? Please help!

        January 12, 2010 at 1:07 pm

        OK – now I found another cover of “River” and this one was done by Lenny Williams of Tower of Power. But, doesn’t anyone remember yet another version that KDIA used to play in 1974? You’d remember that sitar riff, and the drums were way up in the mix too. Actually, the singing reminded me of the Staple Singers, but it wasn’t them. I’d say it was almost the same tempo as Universal Jones’ original. C’mon DJs out there – Doug Cass? Bob Jones? Is anyone out there that still remembers who did it? Please!

    August 15, 2011 at 1:50 am

    johnny do tell us please some stories about sly we would love to hear them thanks jb

    April 4, 2013 at 1:36 pm

    my hero, Ronnie Dark.

Clarence Williams
June 19, 2008 at 7:38 am

I purchased the Soul Over The City lp when I was a kid. It was in the cut out section at Sears. I still have and treasure that lp. I grew up in So Cal with 1580 KDAY, Kute 102, Kjlh 102.3, and Kace. Great stations one and all!

August 30, 2008 at 1:34 am

loved the aircheck on sly, what a great sound for 1967. it was good to see the comment by my old friend doug steele from atlanta.

melvin jones wlok memphis tenn.

jane weems
February 19, 2009 at 3:26 pm

response to rose: yes, I DID go to horace mann junior high school…that’s me, the “beatle house” girl!

November 14, 2009 at 7:47 pm

I have the Soul Over The City LP with Ronnie Dark, Bert Bell (Ding Dong Daddy), Joe and others on the cover. The picture on the cover overlooks San Francisco and the disc jockeys are sitting and standing around a stereo that was to be given away in a contest. I actually won the LP July 1, 1968 on Bert Bell’s Show. My girlfriend and I, whose name is also Debbie, use to visit the station often to pick up prizes and we would often see Sly Stone’s purple sport Jaguar parked in front of the station. Ronnie dark, of course, was my favorite and I actually know his real name, (AM) He was a dear friend who has been to my home in oakland and I had the pleasure of meeting his mother, Luella or Luetta. It’s been 41 years and the memories of the KSOL days are simply marvelous and I sometimes long for those days again because today is so very different from when things were simpler.

    November 17, 2009 at 11:24 am

    I still have a blue and white KSOL bumper sticker – am saving it in between some books! Don’t think I’ll ever use it.

    johnny morris
    December 30, 2009 at 8:06 am

    Thanks so much Debbie! By the way what was or is your last name?

      July 21, 2010 at 7:24 am

      Hi Johnny . . my name was Deborah Smith from Oakland. I lived on 89th ave, just off MacArthur Blvd. I remember riding to the beach with you in your white Thunderbird. You used to DJ at some record store on E14th and you used to allow me to join you in the booth until Pat Ramsey took my place. Wow! the puppy love almost sunk me. (ha ha) Your Mom was a dream. I remember her being such a business woman and very neat. I felt so honored because not every girl gets to meet a man’s mother. Sandra Adams used to call in for dedications almost as much as I did. I think she was from Hunter’s Point. I am so proud of your accomplishments and wish nothing but the best for you and your family. May God continue to be with you.

      Sincerely Debbie Finnie, WPB Florida

        Johnny Morris
        September 15, 2010 at 5:14 am

        Thank you so much for your kind words! Those day’s were very special to me. I lost my mom about 4 years ago. She was very important in my life and career. I’m still in broadcasting. No more DJ stuff just engineering. I live in Los Angeles now. So good hearing from you Debra!

cheryl - HottC
November 18, 2009 at 2:04 pm

I worked as KSOL radio in San Mateo between 1987-1991 when Marvin Robinson and Bernie Moodie, Ken Shubat and Eva Rhodes were there.
I loved that place. Of course this is not related to Sly Sone…right?

Dennis Pete
December 4, 2009 at 1:33 am

Man, talkin’ about strollin’ down memory lane…grew up in the Bay Area in the 60’s, and KSOL and Sly took us on airwave flights where the air was fo sho rare! He set the bar, even as he did later with his gospel-flavored funk/rock songwriting and cutting edge performances (ain’t nobody before or since ever just broke out and started doin’ the hambone). First heard one of these KSOL re-broadcasts of his at the Rock ‘n Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, and I was like a child at Christmas…like man, what a gift!! Sly used ta do this call-in portion, where he’d say “Sly with the soul line…” Classic!!! And as someone earlier mentioned, he had a piano in the studio, and he’d always sign-off by singin’ and playin’ “Good Night My Love” doo-wop style. Much love and props to Sly Stone, an original and a Bay Area Legend…

    Diana Elston
    November 19, 2013 at 1:38 pm

    I remember him signing off with “Good Nigh My Love” too – at midnight I think. There was also some long quote he would say about – I did all you cats out there ….. I’m gonna lay a cat on you – the sweetest darlin’est, wailin’est cat you ever did see – Sly Stone. I found it once but I’ll have to find it again. It was part of so e other “speech”.

    Diana Elston
    November 19, 2013 at 1:41 pm

    I remember him signing off with “Good Nigh My Love” too – at midnight I think. There was also some long quote he would say about – I dig all you cats out there ….. I’m gonna lay a cat on you – the sweetest darlin’est, wailin’est cat you ever did see – Sly Stone. I found it once but I’ll have to find it again. It was part of some other “speech”.

    Diana Elston
    November 19, 2013 at 1:53 pm

    Now, I look at all you cats and kitties out there
    a whippin’ and a wailin’ and a jumpin’ up and down
    and suckin’ up all that juice and pattin’ each other on the back
    and a hippin’ each other who the greatest cat in the world is!

January 10, 2010 at 10:48 pm

Yep my pops worked @ both ksol am and fm
back in the day. Can you d-i-g-i-t……
I went to horaceman.

February 2, 2010 at 5:58 am


February 2, 2010 at 6:00 am


February 2, 2010 at 6:02 am


L.B. Kooster
July 3, 2010 at 6:36 pm

Those days of BLACK RADIO LISTENING in Oakland were a trip on the school-grounds and in the neighborhoods. What Radio Station you listened to was almost like what political party did you belong to. At lunch, on campus,the KDIAS hungout over THERE….the KSOLS over here …. KYA by the creek … KFRC under the tower … KEWB by the gym, and on and on ….

Deborah Smith Finnie
October 13, 2010 at 8:27 am

Johnny . . my sincere condolences on the loss of your mother. I do know how very close you were to her. She was such a fine lady. I lost my mother 5 years ago so I know the feeling. May God continue to embrace you.

Evanthia Ford
December 10, 2010 at 10:56 am

I did my internship at KSOl with Nicklaus Charles Harper! He was the best Dic Jockey there! I will never forgett he great staff and the warm welcome they gave me.

David Campbell
October 3, 2011 at 2:20 pm

Herbert Campbell, aka Bert Bell the “Ding Dong Daddy” and former program director at KSOL 1450 AM, passed away on September 9, 2011 after a short battle with cancer. He was 80.

In addition to his time as a DJ on KSOL and its forerunner KSAN, he also was an award-winning news reporter at KCBS 740 AM. After leaving the broadcasting industry, he channeled his time and energy into his ministry as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses, serving as a member of the body of elders in his congregation for a period spanning five decades.

He may be remembered as the Ding Dong Daddy to many music lovers in the Bay Area, but he was also MY daddy, and he will be missed.

However… //www.watchtower.org/e/bh/article_07.htm

Andrew Gordon
January 18, 2012 at 10:32 pm

Willie Popcorn was a DJ at KSOL during the early 70’s. Sly came out with Give a glass of butter milk. He’s in our early book. AT Castlemont Hi Oakland 1966. He gave free show at school. The record store on E14th st and 85 ave was The House of Music.

Andrew Gordon
January 18, 2012 at 10:40 pm

Soul station KSAN became KSOL around 1962 or 1963. Good rock Lucky was DJ. I have both KSOL LP’s. I took them to Thailand and back. Dock of the Bay and Soul over the City.

May 17, 2012 at 4:38 am

This bring back so much to me. Thank You All…When i was growing up we lived in redwood city my Mom and Aunt where Very good friends of SLYS,I rember he came over a lot after work. the way he got the saying of , Give me a tall glass of butter milk my mom and aunt brought him some at the radio station one night that how he picked that up, also i think that was a way for them to call late at night to him or hook up when he was off..I rember he live in daly city with his mom and dad. my mom is gone now but…i can rember it like yesterday!!!!

May 17, 2012 at 4:43 am

Can any one rember him saying the butermilk twins that was my mom and aunt ..Donna Mayfiel and Terry Allen Two Fine Blondes back in the days..

John Carter
December 9, 2012 at 6:36 pm

I was born and raised in the City of San Francisco. At one time, I had a copy of the Soul Over the City Album; however, through the years it got lost. Although, I remember every song that was played on this alum; it does not sound nothing like the gold LB that I once had. It presented the sound of an echo over playing the City. Nothing like I have ever heard since. One day, I am hoping to get a copy of the LP. Hopefully someone brings it back. I remembered the LP was put out by KSOL radio station. The two most popular soul radio stations at that time was KSOL and KDIA.

John Carter
December 11, 2012 at 12:55 am

The songs that I remember that were on the Soul Over the Album were:

James Brown, There was a dance, there was a time
I Feel good, I got you
Billy Stewart, I do love you
Edwin Star, Agent Double-O-Soul
Alvin Cash, Twine Time
Barbara Mason Yes I’m Ready
Arron Neville, Tell it like it is
The Invicibles, Heart full of love
There is nothing I can do about it
Esther Phillips, And I love him
Gene Chandler, Nothing can stop me
The Olympics, Mine Exclusively
Toussaint McCall Nothing takes the place of you
The Invicibles, I’ll make it easy
Bobby Moore, Searching for my Baby
Drifiters, There goes my Baby
Freddie Scott, Hey Girl
Bobby Bluebland
That is all I remember off this outstanding Album

Michael Tatmon
May 20, 2013 at 4:24 pm

I still hang out with Nick Harper, I was the best man at his wedding last year.Played in alot of celebrity basketball games with him. This is when the radio station was doing a lot of fundraisers for the communities. We played all over the bay area against any and everybody.

April 17, 2015 at 11:44 am

Does anybody remember the song mercy mercy mercy? Played the late 60’s in the bay area. Jazz and a male vocal. He sang “There is no girl in the whole world that can love like you do” Who sang that version? Please let me know.
[email protected]. Thank you.

August 26, 2015 at 1:05 am

Actually you can hear some of those guys on rmconair.com push the classic soul button

T. Watts
September 3, 2015 at 9:56 am

Also Dave Edwards, who worked as an engineer at the original KSOL, has plenty of Air Checks of Sly. Dave has a show currently on KPOO radio in San Francisco on Thursdays mornings 9-11 called Jivin’ Around. You can contact him there.

Chuck "Boom Boom" Cannon
January 18, 2018 at 6:11 am

I worked on-air at KSOL, San Mateo in 1982-1983. Worked with Marvin Robinson (PD), Bernie Moody (Operations Director), Doug Lee, Lee Perkins, Nick Harper, and others. Great memories including a TV Pilot I was fortunate to be on with Marvin Robinson called Radio Video “Off The Top” Starring Gladys Knight. It was video taped in SF for 4 days. I still have pictures. I also got to play on a KSOL basketball team with Nick Harper and ringers. Several big KSOL events included a young Janet Jackson at the Cow Palace and Debarge in Oakland. We even beat KFRC and all other music stations in the Arbitron ratings. I later worked at KFRC in between San Diego, Phoenix and East Coast radio stations. Radio was truly great in the ’80s!

Curvie Jr.
March 31, 2018 at 3:53 am

Love it!

Curvie Jr.
March 31, 2018 at 4:08 am

Loved hearing this clip that was well before my time but I can tell that Sly was definitely ahead of his time. I thought my generation (Gen X) came up with the slang “don’t get it twisted” and “do it to death” – wrong! Cool to listen to the history. I didn’t grow up in San Francisco but I found this site by searching for KSOL after hearing a caller mention their remembrance of KSOL during a radio broadcast in Dallas, TX.

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