Thursday, January 7, 2021

January 7 Radio History

➦In 1904...The Marconi Company made a proposal that there be an international radio distress signal in Morse Code.

“C.Q.D” meant “Stop Sending and Listen” although many eventually thought it to mean “Come, Quick, Danger”. The code was replaced in 1908 by “S.O.S.” because it was quicker to transmit by wireless radio and could not be misinterpreted.

➦In 1924...composer George Gershwin began work on the incomparable score of “Rhapsody in Blue” (he completed it some three weeks later). George was only 26 years old at the time.

➦In 1927...First established commercial telephone service between North America and Europe.

Using radio, the American Telephone and Telegraph Co hosted a two-way conversation between New York and London. The two parties on the line were Walter S Gifford, the president of AT&T, in NY, and Sir Evelyn Murray, the Secretary of the General Post Office, which managed the British telephone system at the time.

➦In 1939...comedian Red Skelton was given his first national starring vehicle as ‘Avalon Time’ debuted on the NBC Red radio network.

➦In 1940...Gene Autry’s "Melody Ranch" debuted on the CBS Radio Network. It stayed on the air for 16 years.

➦In 1941...The NBC Blue Radio Network debuted "The Squeaky Door". The show was later became known as "Inner Sanctum." Raymond Edward Johnson was ‘Raymond your host’ for the first 4 seasons.  Thereafter an even more malevolent (but nameless) host was portrayed by Paul McGrath until the final Sanctum show in October 1952.

➦In 1943...Inventor Nikola Tesla, best remembered for his design of the alternating current (AC) electricity supply system and his contributions to the invention of radio communication, died of a coronary thrombosis at the age of 86.

Nikola Tesla
Tesla's theories on the possibility of the transmission by radio waves go back as far as lectures and demonstrations in 1893 in St. Louis, Missouri, the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and the National Electric Light Association.  Tesla's demonstrations and principles were written about widely through various media outlets. Many devices such as the Tesla Coil were used in the further development of radio.

In 1898, Tesla demonstrated a radio-controlled boat—which he dubbed "teleautomaton"—to the public during an electrical exhibition at Madison Square Garden.  The crowd that witnessed the demonstration made outrageous claims about the workings of the boat, such as magic, telepathy, and being piloted by a trained monkey hidden inside. Tesla tried to sell his idea to the U.S. military as a type of radio-controlled torpedo, but they showed little interest.   Remote radio control remained a novelty until World War I and afterward, when a number of countries used it in military programs.

In 1900, Tesla was granted patents for a "system of transmitting electrical energy" and "an electrical transmitter." When Guglielmo Marconi made his famous first-ever transatlantic radio transmission in 1901, Tesla quipped that it was done with 17 Tesla patents.

This was the beginning of years of patent battles over radio with Tesla's patents being upheld in 1903, followed by a reverse decision in favor of Marconi in 1904. In 1943, a Supreme Court of the United States decision restored the prior patents of Tesla, Oliver Lodge, and John Stone.  The court declared that their decision had no bearing on Marconi's claim as the first to achieve radio transmission, just that since Marconi's claim to certain patents were questionable, he could not claim infringement on those same patents  (there are claims the high court was trying to nullify a World War I claim against the U.S. government by the Marconi Company via simply restoring Tesla's prior patent).

➦In 1949...Radio personality Bill Gable was born.  Hegot his start in radio as a teenager in Allentown, PA and went on to work in the biggest markets in North America, including Detroit-Windsor at CKLW (The Big 8) in the 1970s.

He retired March 2014 from AM 740 in Toronto and died on Sept. 18, 2018.

➦In 1950...Nova Scotia-born Hank Snow and Ernest Tubb made their first appearances at “The Grand Ole Opry” in Nashville.  Ernest also did a 15-minute radio program each day that became very popular in West Texas. So popular, in fact, that he bought the radio station that had aired the program for years and years: KGKL in San Angelo, Texas.

➦In 1985....KHQ-AM in Spokane WA changed call letters to KLSN (now KAQQ).

➦In 2013...93KHJ's first production director and radio engineer Bill Mouzis died in LA at age 90.

Bill Mouzis 1965
Mouzis began his broadcasting career in 1947 at KPAS in Banning and KIST in Santa Barbara under the on-air name of Bill Manning. In 1951, he joined KHJ radio and television (currently KCAL-9) in Hollywood, where he remained for 26 years.

During his early years at KHJ, he worked on programming such as Family Theatre, Queen For a Day and Major League baseball. He also worked on various live network shows, including California Melodies, Sons of the Pioneers, Hawaii Calling, The Green Hornet and Wild Bill Hickock.

When KHJ changed their format to 93/KHJ Boss Radio in 1965, he worked as the production director and engineering supervisor, working closely with Boss Jocks such as the late Robert W. Morgan and The Real Don Steele. One of his most notable projects was the award-winning original 48-hour History of Rock and Roll, which debut in 1969, where he served as the engineering and production director. Taped copies of this work are in the Library of Congress, the UCLA College Library, the Records Archives at the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts in New York, and the Julliard School of Music in New York. The late Bill Drake, who conceived the Boss Radio concept, characterized Mouzis as his "secret weapon."

For the last 14 years of his career, Mouzis worked at ABC and at 710/KMPC. He produced the Gene Autry Story, which continues to be available on two-hour audio cassettes at the Gene Autry Western Heritage Museum in Los Angeles. Mouzis was generally considered to be the premier audio production engineer in the country before he retired in 1990.

  • “Rolling Stone” magazine founder Jann Wenner is 75. 
  • Singer Kenny Loggins is 73. 
  • Singer-songwriter Marshall Chapman is 72. 
  • Actor Erin Gray (“Silver Spoons,” ″Buck Rogers in the 25th Century”) is 71. 
  • Lauren Cohan is 39
    Actor Sammo Hung (“Martial Law”) is 69. 
  • Actor David Caruso is 65. 
  • TV anchor Katie Couric is 64. 
  • Country singer David Lee Murphy is 62. 
  • Bassist Kathy Valentine (The Go-Go’s) is 62. 
  • Actor David Marciano (“Homeland,” ″The Shield”) is 61. 
  • Actor Hallie Todd (“Lizzie McGuire”) is 59. 
  • Actor Nicolas Cage is 57. 
  • Singer John Ondrasik of Five for Fighting is 56. 
  • Actor Rex Lee (“Entourage”) is 52. 
  • Actor-rapper Doug E. Doug (“Cool Runnings,” ″Cosby”) is 51. 
  • Actor Kevin Rahm (“Desperate Housewives,” ″Judging Amy”) is 50. 
  • Jeremy Renner (“The Avengers,” ″The Bourne Legacy”) is 50. 
  • Country singer John Rich of Big and Rich is 47. 
  • Actor Dustin Diamond (“Saved by the Bell”) is 44. 
  • Actor Reggie Austin (“Agent Carter,” ″Pretty Little Liars”) is 42. 
  • Singer-rapper Aloe Blacc is 42. 
  • Actor Lauren Cohan (“The Walking Dead”) is 39. 
  • Actor Brett Dalton (“Marvel’s Agents of Shield”) is 38. 
  • Actor Robert Ri’chard (“One on One”) is 38. 
  • Actor Liam Aiken (“Lemony Snicket”) is 31. 
  • Actor Marcus Scribner (“black-ish”) is 21.

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