Saturday, July 27, 2019

July 27 Radio History

➦In 1941...WTLC-AM began operation in 1941 as WISH. In 1947, principal owner C. Bruce McConnell sold WISH to Frank H. McKinney and associates for a "stripped price of approximately $500,000."

The owners of WISH radio also started a television station with the same call letters on Channel 8 in Indianapolis. In late 1963 the radio station, along with is sister FM operation, was sold to STAR Broadcasting (Don W. Burden) who changed the call letters to WIFE and WIFE-FM.

WIFE was the ratings leader during the mid and late sixties, sometime garnering as much of a forty share of the Indianapolis radio audience. The station built this audience for "Lucky 13" by playing Top40 along with heavy and frequent contesting such as, "The 100 Thousand Dollar Dream Home", "The 100 Thousand Dollar Cash and Car Give-A-Way", just to name a few.

The hands-on owner, Don W. Burden, hired some major on-air personalities and developed others, dubbed the "WIFE Good Guys" – Big Jack Armstrong, Roger W. Morgan, Reb Porter, Jay Reynolds (later WABC), Joe Light, Jay Hawkins, Buddy Scott, Jim Fox, T.J. Byers, Scott Wheeler, Mike O'Brien, Dan Summers, Steve Miller.

The 24 hour news department was home of news announcers Lyle Dean (later WLS) , Bob Schuman, Dean Sheppard and Paul Casey. During these years, the station was infamous for a billboard near Indianapolis' Weir Cook Airport (now Indianapolis International Airport) which told passing motorists, "While you're away, we'll be here with your WIFE".

After Burden later ran afoul of the FCC, Star Stations of Indiana was denied its license renewal application for WIFE in 1976. The station was ordered off the air, forcing a sale to new ownership and management. An era of frequent call letter changes (WMLF, WTUX, WTLC) and formats (Music of Your Life, Adult Standards, and Urban Oldies) began in 1984 and continued into the 1990s.

In late 1997, then-owner Panache sold the frequency to Emmis Communications and the new owners settled on Urban Gospel. For a two-year period the majority of programming was syndicated from Sheridan Broadcasting and branded as "The Light".

In January 2001, the station was purchased from Emmis by Radio One.

➦In 1974...NBC-TV removed the daily Dinah’s Place from its programming roster. The move brought Dinah Shore’s 23-year association with the Peacock Network to a close.

Dinah Shore
Born Frances Rose Shore (February 29, 1916 – February 24, 1994) was an American singer, actress, radio/television personality, and the top-charting female vocalist of the 1940s. She reached the height of her popularity as a recording artist during the Big Band era of the 1940s and 1950s, but achieved even greater success a decade later, in television, mainly as hostess of a series of variety programs for Chevrolet.

She had a string of 80 charted popular hits, spanning the years 1940 to 1957, and after appearing in a handful of feature films went on to a four-decade career in American television, starring in her own music and variety shows from 1951 through 1963 and hosting two talk shows in the 1970s. TV Guide magazine ranked her at #16 on their list of the top fifty television stars of all time. Stylistically, Shore was compared to two singers who followed her in the mid-to-late 1940s and early 1950s, Doris Day and Patti Page.

Shore made her radio debut on Nashville's WSM-AM radio station. Shore decided to return to pursuing her career in singing, moving to New York City to audition for orchestras and radio stations. In many of her auditions, she sang the popular song "Dinah." When disc jockey Martin Block could not remember her name, he called her the "Dinah girl," and soon after the name stuck, becoming her stage name.  Shore eventually was hired as a vocalist at radio station WNEW, where she sang with Frank Sinatra. She recorded and performed with the Xavier Cugat orchestra, and signed a recording contract with RCA Victor Records in 1940.

In March 1939, Shore debuted on national radio on the Sunday afternoon CBS radio program, Ben Bernie's Orchestra. In February 1940, she became a featured vocalist on the NBC Radio program The Chamber Music Society of Lower Basin Street, a showcase for traditional Dixieland and Blues songs.

Shore soon became a successful singing star with her own radio show in 1943, Call to Music. She continued appearing in radio shows throughout the 1940s, including Birds Eye-Open House and Ford Radio Show. In early 1946, she moved to another label, Columbia Records.

➦In 1982...Dan Seymour died (Born - June 28, 1914). He was an announcer in the era of old-time radio and in the early years of television and later became an advertising executive

Seymour was once recognized as "Radio's best announcer."An obituary noted, "Seymour was best known as the deep-voiced announcer who startled Americans with a convincing but fictional account of Martians landing on Earth in the War of the Worlds broadcast in 1938."

His first job in radio—announcing came in 1935 at WNAC in Boston, Massachusetts, after his college graduation. While at the station, he was also an announcer for the Yankee Network. In 1936, he resigned and joined CBS in New York City. His first major assignment there was announcing for Major Bowes Amateur Hour.

A significant assignment early in his career was becoming the announcer on We the People, a job that led to a position with the program's advertising agency, Young and Rubicam.

Other programs on which Seymour worked as announcer were The Henry Morgan Show, The Aldrich Family, Songs by Jack Smith, Aunt Jenny's Real Life Stories, Sing It Again, Bobby Benson, and Original Gillette Community Sing.

Seymour was one of the producers of You and the News.[

Bob Hope
➦In 2003...singer-actor-comedian Bob Hope died of pneumonia at his home in Toluca Lake, California at the age of 100.

His career in broadcasting began on radio in 1934. His first regular series for NBC Radio was the Woodbury Soap Hour in 1937, a 26-week contract. A year later, 'The Pepsodent Show Starring Bob Hope' began, and Hope signed a ten-year contract with the show's sponsor, Lever Brothers. Hope hired eight writers and paid them out of his salary of $2,500 a week. The original staff included Mel Shavelson, Norman Panama, Jack Rose, Sherwood Schwartz, and Schwartz's brother Al. The writing staff eventually grew to fifteen.

The show became the top radio program in the country. Regulars on the series included Jerry Colonna and Barbara Jo Allen as spinster Vera Vague. Hope continued his lucrative career in radio through to the 1950s, when radio's popularity was overshadowed by television.

In the early days, Hope's career included appearances on stage in vaudeville shows and Broadway productions. He began performing on the radio in 1934 mostly with NBC radio, and switched to television when that medium became popular in the 1950s. He began doing regular TV specials in 1954, and hosted the Academy Awards nineteen times from 1939 through 1977.[21] Overlapping with this was his movie career, spanning 1934 to 1972, and his USO tours, which he conducted from 1941 to 1991.

➦In 2013…Dallas-based radio personality David "Kidd" Kraddick died at age 53 of a brain aneurysm while hosting his Kidd's Kids charity golf event.

Kidd Kraddick
Kraddick received the nickname "Kidd" from a radio producer and used the name on-air from 1978 until his death. He won the Billboard Magazine “Air Personality of the Year” Award three times, received the 1992 and 1997 AWRO "Air Personality of the Year," the Marconi Award for "Radio Personality of the Year", won the first annual 1999 WB Radio Music Award as the "Best Radio Personality in the Country", and also the 2001 "Radio and Records CHR/Pop Personality/Show of the Year."

He moved from Tampa to Dallas in 1984 and took over the night shift on the newly formatted Top40 station KEGL (The Eagle) and established a following. In 1990, Kraddick was named to the Ten Outstanding Young Americans list by the United States Junior Chamber. KEGL changed formats from Top 40 pop/rock to Modern Rock in 1992 and Kraddick was released from his contract.

After eight months off the air, he was hired to a morning position at Top40 KHKS 106.1 Kiss-FM in Dallas-Fort Worth.  He won a 1998 Marconi Award for Major Market Radio Personality of the Year while he was with KHKS and the next year he won Air Personality of the Year at the Radio Music Awards. He began to syndicate the show in 2001 and moved the production to an independent studio in Las Colinas.  He became a member of the Texas Radio Hall of Fame.

In the early 1990s, Kraddick launched two radio oriented businesses. A monthly publication for morning personalities called "The Morning Mouth" and a show prep "sharing service" for air personalities called "BitBoard".  Kraddick subsequently sold both entities; BitBoard is now operated by iHeartMedia and The Morning Mouth is owned and operated by Don Anthony's Talentmasters in Atlanta, Georgia

➦In 2013...Herb Kaplow, for 45 years a Washington correspondent for ABC and NBC who brought an authoritative voice to his wide-ranging reporting, suffered a fatal stroke at age 86.

...Radio talk show host and TV actor Jerry Doyle, best remembered as security officer Michael Garibaldi in the futuristic 90’s series Babylon 5, died of complications from chronic alcoholism, less than 2 weeks after his 60th birthday.  When TV assignments dried up Doyle became a syndicated radio talk host.

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