Bob James, “The Time Machine”; 66 WNBC New York | June 9, 1988

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Courtesy of Contributor Frank Davis, who provided all of the “Time Machine” audio found on this website (so far).

Only a few months away from deletion, the WNBC Time Machine is still going strong. We join this aircheck inside a commercial break that ends with the news, then the NBC chime-Legal ID… which is a station promo/ID combo. The promo is for “The Rock & Roll Oldies Show” with Dick Bartley. The Top Hour promo/ID rotated with different promos each hour. This is something that WNBC had been doing for many years and always helped to make the station sound huge.

There was one thing your curator noticed in the final two years with WNBC’s Time Machine – in many ways, they did the WABC music format of the 60s better than WABC did! From the reverb to the jingles to the jocks, everything flowed like a well oiled machine. There was more excitement on this station in 1988 than anywhere else, and this show highlights all the great elements!

Each Time Machine jock had his own personality while maintaining the core format. The “Real” Bob James is quite entertaining and does his own bits. This is one for the true WNBC Time Machine fans!


  1. Dale Parsons

    From the first time I heard him in the 1970s on WGAR in Cleveland, Real Bob has been one of my favorite performers. I was thrilled when we were able to get him for the Time Machine.

    I enjoyed listening to every minute of this aircheck.

  2. Robbie Thomas/Gary Cannon

    When I first heard the Real Bob James on the Big 1220/WGAR Cleveland OH in the 70’s I knew that radio was a career I wanted to get into! Luckily I was able to be mentored by Real Bob during my 18 yr career! There was only one RBJ but I tried to incorporate my personality and stick along the lines of his! Truly one of the best in his time!

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