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Its hard to believe 1980 was so long ago. Well, KFRC is heading towards the end of this first year of the decade of big hair and shortly airing a tribute to John Lennon, who was killed earlier that year. The big movie in 1980 was Xanadu and KFRC is playing plenty of the hits from that movie. Bill Lee is… himself. A rhyme at every break, ultra high-energy and lots of San Francisco’s hit music.

KFRC was at the top of its game in 1980 and still pulling huge ratings despite the encroachment of FM competition. Hard to believe that just six years later it would be all over.

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#KFRC #BroadwayBillLee #Lennon #610SanFrancisco #airchexx

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By Steve West

Steve West is a 41 year veteran of broadcasting. His air work as a Jock and News Anchor includes six radio markets and over two-dozen radio stations. Steve is the founder of and - All the BIG Hits!

14 thoughts on “Bill Lee, 610 KFRC San Francisco | December 13, 1980”
  1. KFRC was North American Perfection in A.M Rock Radio. Bill Lee is just the tip of the legendary BillBoard Jock Hall of Fame Iceberg.

    For newer viewers, be sure to check the site for other KFRC jocks. Hear what California Legends sounded like.

  2. Heard The Bellamy Brothers (scoped) at 4:52, and it was neither “Let Your Love Flow” nor “If I Said you Had a Beautiful Body”. What was the song? In later years, KFRC-AM was oldies: I guess the FM was, too. I believe 610 is now CBS-owned, along with, among others, KCBS (740 AM) and 105.9 (whatever that call is). Don’t know a whole lot about Bay Area radio stations.

  3. Last night while jogging (I declare, if nothing else, jogging makes me think more clearly), it came to me that KNBR (680 AM) was once KNBC. I wondered why there was no KNBC radio station, as there are KABC and KCBS. It was KNBC until sometime in the late ’50s, I believe. 680 and 1050 are co-owned, and if I’m not mistaken, simulcast. KCBS-FM is 93.1 in Los Angeles. It used to be KNX-FM, KNX-AM has been in Los Angeles for many decades and is on 1070. Beg pardon if I was too wordy, but I wanted to post these things while they were fresh in my mind.

  4. The Bellamy Brothers were part of a commercial, not a song played on KFRC. No idea who the sponsor was.

    CBS traded 610 to Family Life Radio for 106.9 FM ten years ago when it bought KOVR-TV in Sacramento. 610’s signal in Sacramento was so strong in those days that it put CBS over the FCC cap if a TV station was added, 106.9 doesn’t make it inland that far, so it’s not a factor. So 610’s been religion as KAER for a decade and ironically their engineering is so bad it’s barely audible in Sacramento now.

    KCBS is simulcast on AM 740 and 106.9, KFRC-FM. The legal ID is “KCBS AM and HD…KFRC-FM and HD-1…San Francisco, Oakland, San Jose.” As Greg said, KFRC-FM HD2 is playing classic hits. They do it with the old KFRC jingles, and the songs are all songs that were huge on KFRC in the glory days (1966-1979).

    1. Thanks for the reply. One more thing about KFRC: It was on 1550 for a short while. 1550 now has an Indian format, after going through sever others, including country. It was KPIX at one time.

  5. That’s right, KEAR, not KAER. The 1550 thing was simply CBS parking the KFRC call letters wherever they could. 1550 was KOBY, one of the earliest top 40s in the Bay Area (1956-1960) and it had a 20-year run as a classical station with an FM simulcast as KKHI.

    1. Thanks for telling me about 1550. I’ve been interested in radio for several decades (I’m 52 now). I also know a little about KGO. At one time, NBC was split into two networks, Red and Blue. General Electric owned NBC, and the KGO call letters had something to do with it. It may have been General Electric Oakland. Also, I saw one source that said KCBS-AM signed on in April 1909. Another source said its (KCBS) calls were KQW and that it was 1010. One other thing, 103.7 (now owned by iHeart Radio) was once a sister station to KGO and was KSFX. Again, so nice to correspond with you.

  6. Knew something was bugging me about the exhibit description. “The big movie in 1980 is Xanadu”. Maybe in terms of radio-friendly singles from soundtracks, but the movie bombed. It was the #28 movie of 1980, More people went to see “The Elephant Man”, “Bronco Billy” and “Raging Bull”.

  7. VBaskin2010 – I'm 31 years old, i'm single, i love toys anime and cartoons. I grew up on Power Rangers even since i was 7 years old, i like different types of music except EDM and Classical. I hoping to become a radio DJ as well be a Program Director too.
    Vaughn Baskin says:

    Little Did KFRC Know That Come In 1984 Is When KMEL Switched To A Top 40/CHR Format As “All Hit 106 KMEL”.

  8. I can’t get enough of KFRC from the Drake era to hearing great jocks like Dr. Don and Bill Lee.

    KFRC really stood out. It was one of the best beginning in the 60s and through the early 80s.

    Bill Lee still knows how to do it. He has been the afternoon drive jock at CBS-FM since they dropped Jack in 2007.

    Many put him down for hitting the post and rhyming but that’s part of what makes a jock stand out and very few can pull it off as well as Broadway Bill Lee can.

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