Friday, July 6, 2018

July 6 Radio History

➦In an experiment, the first photo was sent across the Atlantic by radio from the United States to England.

➦In 1925...rock `n’ roll pioneer Bill Haley (William John Clifton Haley Jr.) was born in Highland Park, a section of Detroit. The biggest hit for Bill Haley & His Comets was the rock `n’ roll classic “(We’re Gonna) Rock Around the Clock,” a No. 1 song for eight weeks in 1955. He was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987. He died of a brain tumour Feb. 9 1981 at age 55.

➦In 1925...singer/host/entrepreneur Merv Griffin was born in San Mateo Calif.  His singing career began at KFRC San Francisco, and hit its peak as vocalist with Freddy Martin’s Orchestra.  He was the singer on a number of hits, including I”ve Got a Lovely Bunch of Coconuts.   He was a TV quizmaster, and started guest hosting the Tonight Show, which led to his own wildly popular syndicated talk show.   He became enormously wealthy after selling his two successful TV quiz creations, Jeopardy & Wheel of Fortune.  He died of prostate cancer Aug. 12 2007 at age 82.

➦In 1943...after several years in supporting radio roles with Rudy Vallee, Paul Whiteman and Edgar Bergen, Judy Canova began her own weekly comedy-and-music show on CBS. The show continued for the next 10 years, mostly on NBC Radio.

In 1947...a hidden microphone eavesdropped on unsuspecting people for the first time, as Candid Microphone hit the airwaves. Allen Funt was the host of the ABC radio show the forerunner of the long-running TV version, Candid Camera.  Candid Microphone didn’t have as long a run on radio, however, lasting one year on ABC, taking a two year hiatus and returning 1n 1950 on CBS Radio for a three-month summer run.

➦In 1950...the CBS Radio answer to NBC’s Dragnet aired for the first time. The Lineup had a distinguished three-year run in the waning days of bigtime radio.

➦In 1957...Liverpool teenagers John Lennon and Paul McCartney met for the first time after a performance by Lennon's band, the Quarrymen.

➦In 1963...Dick Biondi - the once-popular evening DJ on WLS 890 AM inChicago, begins on KRLA 1110 AM in Pasadena, Calif. He walked out on WLS about 2 months ago in a disagreement. KRLA is in a top-40 battle with KFWB.Even though KFWB is #1 - the new KRLA lineup looks like this - Reb Foster, Casey Kasem, Bob Eubanks, Dick Biondi, Ted Quilin. (Today, Biondi airs on WLS 94.7 FM in Chicago.)

KRLA overtook KFWB by the mid-1960s. In 1965, KHJ start its “Boss Radio” Top 40 format, which launched it to the No. 1 position.  KRLA was the second-place Top 40 station.  KFWB abandoned music and flipped to all-news in 1968.

As music listeners moved to FM, KRLA evolved to adult contemporary by 1982.  It became an oldies station in 1983.  That lasted until 1994, when KRLA moved to urban oldies.  In 1998, KRLA went to an all-talk format before flipping to all-sports KSPN in 2000.  Today, it’s KDIS, a Radio Disney children’s music station.

When KRLA became KSPN in 2000, the KRLA call letters went to 870 AM, which carries a conservative talk format.

➦In 1974..."A Prairie Home Companion," a live radio variety show created and hosted by Garrison Keillor and first broadcast from Macalester College in St. Paul, made its debut on Minnesota Public Radio.

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