Wednesday, April 6, 2016

April 6 Radio History

In 1892...Lowell Thomas, one of America’s most respected newscasters was born in Woodington, Ohio.

He began his lengthy broadcasting career in 1930, as a replacement for NBC’s Floyd Gibbons. Thomas’ radio career spanned five decades and three networks. The first sixteen years were spent at NBC where his broadcasts became so important that the network placed two microphones in front of him … just in case one failed. Lowell Thomas would scoop the other networks and the newspapers wielding a clout and influence never before heard on the airwaves. After NBC, Thomas moved to CBS, where he stayed for thirty years.

Then, in his last years (he died Aug. 29, 1981 at age 89), he hosted Lowell Thomas Remembers, a series on National Public Radio.


In 1931...the Radio serial, "Little Orphan Annie", was first broadcast on the NBC Radio Network.

In 1974..After initially arguing with his record company about releasing it as a single ("it's the same thing over and over"), Billy Joel gets his first Top 40 hit with "Piano Man."

In 1984...Windsor’s iconic rock radio station CKLW (The Big 8 ) switched format to Adult Standards, under the brand ‘The Music of Your Life.’

It is best known for having been one of the most influential Top 40 stations in the world in the 1960s and 1970s. During this era, CKLW used a very tight Top 40 format known as Boss Radio, devised by radio programmer Bill Drake. However, CKLW never actually used the handle "boss" on the air, just the style. Rather than a "Boss 30", CKLW's weekly music survey was known as a "Big 30". And instead of calling itself "Boss Radio", CKLW called itself "The Big 8". During this period it was the top-rated radio station not only in Windsor, but across the river in Detroit, and even in cities as far away as Toledo and Cleveland in Ohio.

In 2003…NBC News reporter David Bloom died of a pulmonary embolism at the age of 39 while covering the war in Iraq.

In 2011...Coyote McCloud, a popular Nashville radio personality for more than 30 years, died of liver disease at 68.

Coyote McCloud
Born William Lehmann on August 31, 1942,was a drive-time personality at several Nashville radio stations for over 30-years. He first became well known in the early 1970s on WMAK-AM, then a market-dominant rock and roll station, as host of its 7 p.m.–midnight program. He was called "legendary" among DJs.

McCloud was one of the most controversial deejays of the late 1980s when he was the lead man on "The Zoo Crew" on Nashville's Y107 (WYHY). While enormously popular amongst his target demographic, his outlandish on-air personality drew the ire of many within the community as being a "bad influence" on teenagers. He was one of the subjects of a CBS 48 Hours documentary in 1992 about "shock radio". McCloud enjoyed his highest level of popularity while working for Y107, and had his own fan club.  He worked at the station for over 10 years, from 1984 to 1995. McCloud was featured frequently in Billboard.

Early in his career, he was an afternoon drive personality at WGOW-AM (owned by Ted Turner) in Chattanooga, using the name Bill Scott. In 1976, his recording of "Nitty Gritty Rock and Roll" was released as 45 rpm record on the Midland South label, distributed by RCA. The song included the catch-phrases he used as a nighttime deejay on WQXI "Quixie" in Atlanta.

Early in 1983 while hosting the morning show at Kix 104, McCloud was selected by Country Music Television network founders Glenn D. Daniels and co-founder G. Dean Daniels to be the first on-air "voice" of the network. When CMT (originally called "CMTV") launched on March 5, 1983, McCloud provided the first vocal announcement heard on the network under an animated "CMTV" logo with the words, "You're Watching CMTV...Country Music stereo." He remained the on-air "voice" of the network from 1983 through 1984.

McCloud also worked at Kix 104 (WWKX) in the early 1980s, Power Country 103 (WZPC) in the mid-1990s, and Oldies 96.3 (WMAK) in the early 2000s. Along with Cathy Martindale, he hosted Coyote & Cathy In The Morning on 96.3 (WMAK FM) and 97.1 WRQQ until late November 2006.

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