Bob Mitchell, 1260 KYA San Francisco | April, 1961

Knowing next to nothing about this recording, I have to defer to someone who might have been around in 1961 to have heard it.

This is Top 40 pioneer KYA. Doing the format several years before RKO decided to take KFRC in that direction. Bob Mitchell was known as a slick, fast talking jock (especially for that time period) and while quick, is smooth as glass on this 10 minute scope that sounds so good, it’s like standing in the AM studio with him.


1260 AM San Francisco, Tom Donahue, Bob Mitchell, KYA


  1. Johnny Morgan

    Bobby Mitchell came to KYA from Philly’s WIBG. He was there during KYA’s glory years, under PDs Les Crane and Bill Drake, coming west in 1961 with Peter Tripp and Tom Donahue (also from WIBG). He stuck with Donahue for many years, on and of air, including as concert promoters. They did the 1966 Candlestick Park Beatles concert, the last one ever.

    He worked for Drake again in 1967-68 at KHJ, as Bobby Tripp.

    His real name was Michael Guerra, and he died in July 1968 after a courageous battle with Hodkins Disease. Ron Jacobs, KHJ PD said, “there never was a better disk jockey than Bobby Tripp”.

  2. boogiebar

    wow, what a wonderful sample and a lesson in the way it was suppossed to be done…superlative effort from one of the greats…story goes: Drake hired Tripp/Mitchell at KHJ even knowing he was severely ill…and what a fabulous addition to the KHJ lineup he made…

    many thanks to who-ever contributed this…please keep ’em coming, this one is truly rare and special, Bobby in his prime at KYA! did you catch all those inside (wraparound )talkups?

  3. hi sounds like bobby mitchell to me good for him being two people at the same time lol

  4. Jaybird100

    This is a great aircheck, very typical of stations of that era. The jingles used here were also used by WAME in Miami. This is from a time where radio was for more than just pushing products, where entertainment was the name of the game. Too bad radio has deteriorated to a mere shadow of what it used to be.

  5. gene sculatti

    A wonderful aircheck from one of the best. He got much from Joe Niagara at WIBG but was his own man. He and partner Tom Donahue eschewed the silliness of most T-40 DJ’s of the day, talking to us Bay Area kids like we were equals. I try to do him proud on my own ‘Atomic Cocktail’ show, Thursdays at //

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