|Katherine Raht, House Jameson|
Success on Broadway led to a starring role in CBS radio’s Renfrew of the Mounted, and the part for which he is beloved, playing father over the 14 year run of NBC’s The Aldrich Family. When the family comedy went to TV in 1949 he was the only radio cast member to move with it. His many guest appearances on TV through the 1960’s were highlighted by recurring roles on the soaps The Edge of Night and Another World.
He died April 23 1971 at age 68.
The station's history traces back to 1924, when Alfred H. Grebe started WAHG at 920 AM. WAHG was a pioneering station in New York, and was one of the first commercial radio stations to broadcast from remote locations including horse races and yachting events. Two years later, in 1926, Alfred Grebe changed the station's call sign to WABC (for his Atlantic Broadcasting Company) after concluding a business arrangement with the Ashland Battery Company (which had owned the call sign for a station in Asheville, North Carolina) and moved his studios to West 57th Street, which would not be the last time the station would operate from 57th Street.
In 1928, General Order 40 moved the station's frequency to 970 AM, and the station became a part-time affiliate of the Columbia Broadcasting System, which was looking for a full-time radio presence in New York City (CBS's first flagship was WOR). After a short time broadcasting CBS programming three days a week, CBS president William S. Paley purchased WABC and it became a subsidiary of CBS.
As a result, this station has no relation to the longtime ABC radio flagship station on 770 AM that began in 1921 as WJZ, and has operated as WABC since 1953.
➦In 1926...KYA San Francisco, California was licensed. It signed-on 12/18/1926.
KYA went on the air on 18 December 1926, with 500 watts on 970 kHz from the Clift Hotel in San Francisco. The owners were Vincent I. Kraft of Seattle, who had started KJR (AM) there; and Frederick C. Clift of San Francisco. It got a license for 1000 watts on 850 kHz in November 1927. Its studios moved to the Warfield Theatre Building at 988 Market Street, but the transmitter stayed at the Clift Hotel.
In November 1928 moved to 1230 kHz as part of a nationwide frequency reshuffling, and joined the Columbia Broadcasting System. By May 1929 its transmitter was reported to be at 680 Geary Street at Taylor Street. The station licensee went bankrupt in August, and KYA was transferred to a new corporation by the end of 1929. The transmitter facility was moved again, on 25 June 1930, to the Whitcomb Hotel. Having moved to various locations around the radio dial during the chaotic early days of broadcasting, KYA was assigned permanently to 1260 kHz as a result of NARBA in 1941.
"The Boss of the Bay" - KYA as a Top 40 Rock Station
In the mid-1950s, KYA made its mark as a rock and roll station. KYA was for many years the leading Top 40 music radio station in the Bay Area, until the stronger-signalled KFRC switched to the format in 1966. From time to time, up through 1970, KYA would again beat KFRC in the Arbitron ratings, but KYA's dominance was truly over after the mid-60's. Former KYA morning man and legendary radio programmer Bill Drake went on to consult KFRC to its ratings success; it was at KYA that Drake first made his mark as program director. KYA was also instrumental in the careers of future sportscaster Johnny Holliday, audio and electronics store pitchman Tom Campbell, Hall of Fame disc jockey and underground radio pioneer Tom Donahue (a/k/a "Big Daddy"), and Tommy Saunders, who retired from KYA's successor, KOIT, in 2006.
Other notable disc jockeys who plied their trade on KYA's airwaves in the 1960s included Les Crane, (air name Johnny Raven), Casey Kasem, Jim Stagg, Bobby Mitchell, Norman Davis, "Emperor" Gene Nelson, Peter Tripp, Tony Bigg, Russ "The Moose" Syracuse, Chris Edwards, Ed Hider, Johnny Holliday, Bill Holley (a cousin of Buddy Holly), Bwana Johnny, and Gary Shaffer. The 1970's saw a staff that included Christopher Cain, Roger W. Morgan, Jay Stone, Scott Thomas, Steve Jordan, Jimmy "Jet" Powers, Gary Mora, and Michael Rivers.
In December 1979, KYA AM & FM flipped to a light album rock format under the title "Easy Rock 93." Within months the AM station would flip again, this time to an oldies format while the FM station would continue the light album rock format as KLHT (K-LITE). Morgan, Mora, and Syracuse would be brought back to revive the station from its heyday. This format would hold until the station was sold in 1983.
KYA's dominance was basically over by the late 1960s when FM stations began playing rock 'n' Roll and gained large chunks of the audiences.
In mid-2007, Bonneville reached an agreement to sell the 1260 AM frequency to IHR Educational Broadcasting. IHR took over the station's operations in December of that year under a time-brokerage agreement, and officially closed on the station on February 1, 2008.
In 2007, KOIT-AM, the former 1260/KYA, became KSFB, a Catholic-oriented station owned by Immaculate Heart Radio. Ironically, KYA's chief Top 40 rival in the 1960s and 1970s, KFRC (610 AM), is now the Christian-oriented KEAR (the KFRC call letters would return in January 2009, this time at 1550 AM replacing KYCY and the station is owned by CBS Radio).
On December 10, 2007, a religious format came to 1260 AM; the call sign was changed to KSFB. KSFB is part of one of the largest Catholic radio network in America, and its daily broadcasts include daily mass and rosary.
➦In 1936...Edgar Bergen became the first ventriloquist to successfully perform on national radio as he and Charlie McCarthy appeared on NBC's "The Royal Gelatin Hour," hosted by singer/bandleader Rudy Vallée.
➦In 1955...Carl Perkins wrote "Blue Suede Shoes." Less than 48 hours later, he recorded it at the Sun Records studio in Memphis.
James won a place in Beatles mythology as the first disk jockey to play the group's records on American radio. But D. L. MacLaughlan, a Beatles researcher at UCLA, has found playlists and top-40 charts from radio stations around the country that predate Mr. James's broadcast by as much as 10 months. The earliest was WLS in Chicago, which began playing ''Please Please Me'' in February 1963. Nevertheless, the Beatles and Capitol considered Mr. James's advocacy helpful, and invited him to be the master of ceremonies at the group's first American concert, at the Washington Coliseum.
James died from cancer in 1997.
➦In 1976...Ted Turner's WTCG-TV in Atlanta changed call letters to WTBS and its signal was sent via satellite to cable systems all over the U.S. – the first commercial TV station to cover the entire country – making it the first TV "Super Station."
➦In 1986...Wayne Newton won a $19.2 million suit against NBC News. The network had aired reports claiming a link between Newton and mob figures, reports later proven to be false.
➦In 1987...WPLJ NYC calls were changed to WWPR ("World Wide Power Radio") and 95.5 became "Power 95." However, a year later - December 21, 1988 - calls were changed back to WPLJ and "Power 95" was dropped.
|Richard C. Hottelet 1944|
➦In 2016…Radio personality (Rockline, Los Angeles stations KLOS, KCBS-FM, KMET, KZLA, KLSX) Bob Coburn died of lung cancer at age 68.