Tuesday, April 6, 2021

April 6 Radio History

➦In 1892...Lowell Jackson Thomas born (Died at age 81 – August 29, 1981).  He  was a writer, actor, broadcaster, and traveler, best remembered for publicizing T. E. Lawrence (Lawrence of Arabia). He was also involved in promoting the Cinerama widescreen system.

In 1930, he became a broadcaster with the CBS Radio network, delivering a nightly news and commentary program. After two years, he switched to the NBC Radio network but returned to CBS in 1947. In contrast to today's practices, Thomas was not an employee of either NBC News or CBS News. Prior to 1947, he was employed by the broadcast's sponsor Sunoco. He returned to CBS to take advantage of lower capital-gains tax rates, establishing an independent company to produce the broadcast which he sold to CBS. He hosted the first-ever television news broadcast in 1939 and the first regularly scheduled television news broadcast (even though it was just a camera simulcast of his radio broadcast) beginning on February 21, 1940 over local station W2XBS (now WNBC) New York. It is not known whether all or some of the radio/TV simulcasts were carried by the two other television stations capable of being fed programs by W2XBS at the time, which were W2XB (now WRGB) Schenectady and W3XE (now KYW-TV) Philadelphia.

In the summer of 1940, Thomas anchored the first live telecast of a political convention, the 1940 Republican National Convention which was fed from Philadelphia to W2XBS and on to W2XB. Reportedly, Thomas wasn't even in Philadelphia, instead anchoring the broadcast from a New York studio and merely identifying speakers who addressed the convention.

The television news simulcast was a short-lived venture for him, and he favored radio. Indeed, it was over radio that he presented and commented upon the news for four decades until his retirement in 1976, the longest radio career of anyone in his day (a record later surpassed by Paul Harvey). His signature sign-on was "Good evening, everybody" and his sign-off "So long, until tomorrow," phrases that he would use in titling his two volumes of memoirs.


➦In 1931...Little Orphan Annie debuted on the NBC Radio Network.  Annie was based on the daily American comic strip created by Harold Gray and syndicated by the Tribune Media Services. The strip took its name from the 1885 poem "Little Orphant Annie" by James Whitcomb Riley, and made its debut on August 5, 1924, in the New York Daily News.

The plot follows the wide-ranging adventures of Annie, her dog Sandy and her benefactor Oliver "Daddy" Warbucks. Secondary characters include Punjab, the Asp and Mr. Am. The strip attracted adult readers with political commentary that targeted (among other things) organized labor, the New Deal and communism.

 The strip's popularity declined over the years; it was running in only 20 newspapers when it was cancelled on June 13, 2010.

➦In 1945...'This is Your FBI' debuted on ABC radio as a weekly 30-minute police drama. Frank Lovejoy served as narrator over the following eight years.

➦In 1984...One of the most influential Top 40 stations in the world in the 1960s and 1970s Windsor’s iconic rock radio station CKLW (The Big 8 ) switched format to Adult Standards, branding as ‘The Music of Your Life.’


Some listeners believe that CKLW started to decline in popularity after Canadian content regulations went into effect in 1971. Although having to play 30% "CanCon" songs that generated little in the way of sales put the station at a competitive disadvantage compared to its U.S.-based competition, CKLW still managed to help break a number of Canadian songs and artists in the United States. These included Anne Murray, The Poppy Family, Gordon Lightfoot, Joni Mitchell, The Guess Who, April Wine, the Five Man Electrical Band, and Bachman Turner Overdrive. Just as, if not more, responsible for the decline in CKLW's ratings as the 1970s wore on was the rise of FM radio as an outlet for contemporary music, as the station gained a direct FM Top 40 competitor, WDRQ, in 1972, and its listening audience was also fragmented between album oriented rock outlets such as WWWW, WRIF and WABX and adult contemporary stations like WNIC and WMJC.

The Canadian government's initial unwillingness to licence FM frequencies with pop or rock formats stranded Canadian stations on AM while an entire demographic of listeners began the exodus to US-based FM outlets anywhere the signals were in range. For many younger listeners by 1978, CKLW was the station they listened to only if they had an AM-only radio in their cars.

The station's music softened to the point where by 1982 it gave no airtime to harder-rocking songs like Joan Jett's "I Love Rock 'n' Roll", and jingles were initially phased out, with new jingles and a new slogan ("The Great Entertainer") being introduced in 1979.

➦In 2011...Coyote William McCloud died from liver disease at age 68 (Born - August 31, 1942). He was a popular radio disc jockey in Nashville.

Coyote McCloud
For more than 30 years, he was a drive-time personality at several Nashville radio stations. 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

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 among 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 Television...in 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.

➦In 2014...actor Mickey Rooney, whose career began in vaudeville, silent movies and on radio, and continued through Hollywood’s sound era into television, his work spanning nine decades until just a few weeks earlier, died at age 93.

Candace Cameron
  • Actor Billy Dee Williams is 84. 
  • Actor Roy Thinnes (“The Invaders”) is 83. 
  • Director Barry Levinson (“Rain Man,” “The Natural”) is 79. 
  • Actor John Ratzenberger (“Cheers”) is 74. 
  • Actor Patrika Darbo (“The Bold and the Beautiful”) is 73. 
  • Actor Marilu Henner (“Taxi,” ″Evening Shade”) is 69. 
  • Actor Michael Rooker (“Guardians of the Galaxy”) is 66. 
  • Guitarist Warren Haynes of Gov’t Mule is 61. 
  • Singer-guitarist Black Francis of The Pixies is 56. 
  • Actor Ari Meyers (“Kate & Ally”) is 52. 
  • Actor Paul Rudd is 52. 
  • Actor Jason Hervey (“The Wonder Years”) is 49. 
  • Bassist Markku Lappalainen (Hoobastank) is 48. 
  • Actor Zach Braff (“Scrubs”) is 46. 
  • Actor Joel Garland (“Orange Is the New Black”) is 46. 
  • Actor Candace Cameron Bure (“Full House”) is 45. 
  • Actor Teddy Sears (“24: Legacy”) is 44. 
  • Musician Robert Glasper is 43. 
  • Actor Eliza Coupe (“Happy Endings,” ″Scrubs”) is 40. 
  • Actor Charlie McDermott (“The Middle”) is 31.

No comments:

Post a Comment