|John 'Records' Landecker|
The annual Achievement in Broadcasting Dinner instead became an online lunchtime event hosted by NAB President Gordon Smith, with presenters and recipients appearing via video conferencing as the annual gathering in Las Vegas scheduled for April was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Landecker was recognized for his trailblazing career as one of the most popular disc jockeys in America, whose long tenure in nights on WLS Chicago (890), the 50,000-watt flamethrower that reached listeners in nearly 40 states, placed him in legendary status among radio personalities.
He was inducted by Salem Media Group President of Broadcast Media and NAB Radio Board Chair Dave Santrella. A fellow Chicagoan, Santrella called Landecker one of the first radio hosts to interact live with listeners on the phone, “allowing him and those following in his footsteps to connect with audiences in a fun and meaningful way day after day.”
“John being on at night, on a 50,000-watt radio station, covering 37 states with 5.7 million listeners had a huge impact and really, to most of our listeners, John was WLS and he did us proud,” for WLS-AM GM John Gehron said.
|Back In The Day...|
“We were supposed to be in Vegas, and obviously we’re not,” he continued. “The virus came and all that it brought with it and people had to scramble to put this together and thanks to their efforts here we are, today… These are totally unique times and I’m never going to forget 2020 and this will be one of the items that will be top of the list.” Landecker then showed off the trophy for those watching the live video stream. “It’s made of crystal… and I call it Billy.”
Wrapping up his acceptance comments in true Landecker style, he said, “Let me just say something that I’m pretty sure no inductee in the history of the National Association of Broadcasters Broadcasting Hall of Fame has ever said: I’m not wearing pants. I’m John Landecker, and Records truly is my middle name.”
Landecker was inducted into the National Radio Hall of Fame in 2017. He is also memorialized in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland.