➦In 1914...the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (known as ASCAP) was formed in New York City. The society was founded to protect the copyrighted musical compositions of its members. A rival performing rights organization, Broadcast Music Incorporated (BMI), was formed in 1939.
|Tennessee Ernie Ford|
A First Lieutenant, he served in the United States Army Air Corps in World War II as the bombardier on a B-29 Superfortress flying missions over Japan.
After the war, Ford worked at radio stations in San Bernardino and Pasadena, California. At KFXM, in San Bernardino, Ford was hired as a radio announcer. He was assigned to host an early morning country music disc jockey program, Bar Nothin' Ranch Time. To differentiate himself, he created the personality of "Tennessee Ernie", a wild, madcap, exaggerated hillbilly. He became popular in the area and was soon hired away by Pasadena's KXLA radio.
At KXLA, Ford continued doing the same show and also joined the cast of Cliffie Stone's popular live KXLA country show Dinner Bell Roundup as a vocalist while still doing the early morning broadcast. Cliffie Stone, a part-time talent scout for Capitol Records, brought him to the attention of the label. In 1949, while still doing his morning show, he signed a contract with Capitol. He became a local TV star as the star of Stone's popular Southern California Hometown Jamboree show. RadiOzark produced 260 15-minute episodes of The Tennessee Ernie Show on transcription disks.
He released almost 50 country singles through the early 1950s, several of which made the charts.
Ford eventually ended his KXLA morning show and in the early 1950s. He became a household name in the U.S., largely as a result of his portrayal in 1954 of the 'country bumpkin', "Cousin Ernie", on three episodes of I Love Lucy. His big hit in 1955 was Sixteen Tons, which propelled him to a six year prime time show on NBC TV. He has three stars on the Hollywood Walk of fame, for records, television, and radio.
A heavy drinker off stage, Ernie died of increasing liver problems Oct. 17 1991 at age 72.
➦In 1919...Early radio singer Joan Edwards was born in New York City (died at age 62 from an apparent heart attack August 27, 1981). She was perhaps best known for her work on the radio version of Your Hit Parade. She also was a vocalist for Paul Whiteman and His Orchestra.
Edwards' early appearances on radio came "via small stations in New York City."Her first network appearance was on Fred Allen's program.
Beginning March 3, 1941, Edwards had her own program, Girl About Town, on CBS. The 15-minute show was broadcast Wednesdays and Fridays at 10:30 p.m. Eastern time. Although her singing was featured, she played the piano for one song in each episode.
In December 1941, Edwards was selected as the new female soloist on Your Hit Parade. Three years later, an article in Tune In magazine observed, "Joan Edwards sets something of a record, lasting through the regimes of three male singers -- Barry Wood, Frank Sinatra, Lawrence Tibbett -- in a three-year period."
Her tenure on the program eventually reached five years, and the list of male singers' names grew to include Dick Todd and Johnny Mercer. She was dropped from Your Hit Parade in 1947 when the sponsor, American Tobacco Company, changed format, using guest stars rather than regular soloists.
On March 3, 1952, Edwards began a morning disc jockey program on WCBS-AM in New York City
➦In 1934...WNEW 1130 AM NYC Signed on
The station's origins go back to 1922 as WAAM and 1925 as WODA. A radio institution throughout the majority of the 20th century, WNEW was known for its music selection as well as its staff of radio personalities including Martin Block, Dee Finch, Gene Rayburn, Gene Klaven, Ted Brown and William B. Williams. WNEW is credited with pioneering the role of the disc jockey, as well as for developing the modern morning radio show format and debuting the first all-night radio show. In addition to its music and entertainment programming, WNEW featured an award-winning news desk and became "the voice of New York sports" for its coverage of New York Giants football games. After years of declining ratings and management changes in the 1980s, WNEW was purchased by Bloomberg L.P. in 1992 and changed call letters to WBBR.
WODA was acquired in 1934 by advertising executive Milton Biow and watch manufacturer Arde Bulova after the Amalgamated Broadcasting System failed and began selling off its radio stations.
The call letters were changed to WNEW for “the NEWest thing in radio”.
The station was launched in a ceremony performed on February 13th at 9 pm by President Franklin D. Roosevelt. From the White House the president pushed a button and moments later a lamp illuminated in a New Jersey transmitter room. As the light shined, soprano Yvonne D’Arle sang the Star Spangled Banner and WNEW 1130 AM officially went on the air.
New York socialite Bernice Judis was hired as WNEW's first General Manager.
As a small, independent radio station, WNEW lacked the funds larger networks Columbia Broadcasting System, Mutual Broadcasting System, and the National Broadcasting Company used to produce daily programming common for that time such as comedy shows, soap operas and dramatic programs. However, Judis was not discouraged, and even welcomed the opportunity to develop her own schedule of innovative programming that included playing recordings of popular music throughout the day, creating the first all-night radio show, Milkman's Matinee, and cultivating a line-up of popular morning radio show personalities.
In 1935, WNEW pioneered the concept of a disc jockey when staff announcer Martin Block needed to fill time between new bulletins during his coverage of the Lindbergh kidnapping trial of Bruno Hauptmann. Block did not have access to a live orchestra to play music during the breaks as most network stations did, so he played records instead. Soon afterward, he piloted a 15-minute experimental show called the Make Believe Ballroom, during which he played records from popular bands and singers, posed as a live performance in an imaginary ballroom. During Block's tenure as host of Make Believe Ballroom, the show attracted 25% of the listening audience in New York City. The show continued in sporadic runs until the station's end in 1992.
➦In 1947... “Family Theater” was heard for the first time on Mutual radio. Jim Ameche and Loretta Young starred in the program’s first episode, “Flight from Home”. The overtly-Christian stories were directed at Roman Catholic families. Production ceased in 1956 but reruns continued through the 1960’s.
➦In 1949...'Pat Novak for Hire', a radio detective drama series debuted. It was produced at KGO in San Francisco program and in 1949 as a nationwide program for ABC. The regional version originally starred Jack Webb in the title role, with scripts by his roommate Richard L. Breen. When Webb and Breen moved from San Francisco to Los Angeles to work on an extremely similar nationwide series, 'Johnny Madero Pier 23', for the Mutual network, Webb was replaced by Ben Morris and Breen by other writers.
➦In 1956...Coral Records, a subsidiary of Decca Records, signed a deal with NYC radio personality Alan Freed to curate four rock 'n' roll dance and party albums.
➦In 1956...KYW 1060 AM in Philadelphia PA gave call letters to WTAM Cleveland. Philadelphia’s KYW has a long (and mobile) history.
KYW began in 1921 in Chicago, Illinois. It was jointly owned by Westinghouse Electric Corporation and Commonwealth Edison. Westinghouse later bought out ComEd's share and became sole owner of the station. In 1927, Westinghouse aligned its four radio stations (KYW, KDKA in Pittsburgh, WBZ in Boston and WBZA in Springfield, Massachusetts) with the NBC Blue Network, which originated from former sister station WJZ (the present-day WABC) in New York City. Westinghouse had been a founding partner of the Radio Corporation of America (RCA), NBC's original parent company.
In June 1955, Westinghouse agreed to trade KYW and WPTZ to NBC in exchange for the network's properties in Cleveland, WNBK television and WTAM-AM-FM. Westinghouse also received $3 million in cash compensation. The main impetus for the trade was NBC's desire to acquire an owned-and-operated television station in the fourth-largest American television market. NBC had to seek a waiver for the swap since KYW and NBC Radio's New York City flagship, WRCA (now sister station WFAN) were both clear channel stations; at the time, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) normally did not allow common ownership of clear-channel stations with overlapping nighttime coverage. After clearing final regulatory hurdles, the swap went into effect on February 13, 1956. NBC took over the Philadelphia stations, rechristening 1060 AM as WRCV (for the RCA-Victor record label), and Westinghouse moved the KYW call letters to Cleveland.
On September 21, 1965, shortly after Westinghouse regained control of 1060 AM, the newly rechristened KYW once again dropped its NBC radio affiliation and was converted into one of the first all-news stations in the country.
Today KYW, Philadelphia is owned by Entercom Communications.
➦In 2007...Premiere Radio Networks announced that American Top 40 with Ryan Seacrest had passed the 400-station mark worldwide. Seacrest also enjoyed a #1 rating in New York and Los Angeles with the target demo of adults 18-34. In January 2004, Seacrest became the new host of the syndicated weekly countdown show, created and formerly hosted by Casey Kasem. A month later, Seacrest became host of Los Angeles radio station KIIS 1027 FM morning show, replacing long-time host Rick Dees.
➦In 2019...the Chicago Cubs and Sinclair Broadcast Group announced the formation of a regional channel called the Marquee Sports Network to carry the team’s games starting the following spring.