Saturday, August 28, 2021

August 28 Radio History

➦In 1922...In February, the American Telephone & Telegraph Company (AT&T) announced it planned to begin establishing stations that would be dedicated to selling their airtime to interested parties, which AT&T called "toll broadcasting".

Its primary station, WEAF in New York (now WFAN), aired its first paid $100 for a 10-minute radio commercial on August 28, 1922 for the Queensboro Corporation, advertising a new apartment complex in Jackson Heights, Queens, near the just-completed #7 subway line.

Based on a series of industry cross-licensing agreements, AT&T initially claimed that its patent rights gave it a monopoly on commercial radio transmissions. Although the courts upheld this contention, the practice was widely disliked, and AT&T soon came up with a licensing scheme to allow individual stations to begin selling airtime.

➦In 1954...Elvis Presley got Memphis airplay on his first official release “That’s All Right (Mama)” b/w “Blue Moon of Kentucky”.  Local DJ Dewey Phillips had debuted the single on his “Red Hot and Blue” radio show on WHBQ.

In 1961...Cousin Brucie Morrow started at 77WABC. 

 Morrow's first stint in radio was in Bermuda at ZBM-AM, where he was known as "The Hammer."

Morrow began his stateside career at New York Top 40 station WINS in 1959. In 1960, he moved to Miami for a brief stint before returning to the New York airwaves the following year on AM 770 powerhouse WABC, another Top 40 outlet. Morrow's return to New York City came at the precise moment that rock and roll music was exploding across the Baby Boom demographic and Morrow found himself on the most powerful radio station on the East Coast. His main competition came from his previous station WINS, which featured "Murray the K."

"Cousin Brucie" quickly became a success on WABC's teen-oriented evening shift in the 6:15 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. slot. Morrow became a commercial radio powerhouse and household name through his ability to maintain a rapport with his listeners while smoothly mixing the diverse musical genres of the time (Motown soul, pop, hard rock, surf music, novelty records), and then seamlessly segueing into commercials for youth-oriented sponsors and events such as concerts and drag-strip races.

He served at WABC for 13 years and 4,014 broadcasts until August 1974, when he jumped to rival station WNBC.

➦In 1966...the Beatles played Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles. It was their next-to-last live performance.  The Beatles performed before 45,000 people in Los Angeles. Tickets were priced at $3, $4.50, $5.50 and $6. The cheapest were reserved for members of the US Army.

The support acts for the concert were The Remains, Bobby Hebb, The Cyrkle and The Ronettes. The Beatles performed a set consisted of 11 songs: Rock And Roll Music, She's A Woman, If I Needed Someone, Day Tripper, Baby's In Black, I Feel Fine, Yesterday, I Wanna Be Your Man, Nowhere Man, Paperback Writer and Long Tall Sally.

➦In 1967...WCBS 880 AM flipped to all news.

By the early sixties, WCBS had evolved into a Middle of the road (MOR) music and personality format, which included limited talk programming. Personalities included legendary morning host Jack Sterling, Bill Randle and Lee Jordan. Like many MOR stations at the time, WCBS did mix in softer songs by rock-and-roll artists, as its ratings at the time were ordinary compared to the higher ratings at WOR and WNEW, both of which also had MOR formats and more distinct identities. Through it all, the variety show "Arthur Godfrey Time" remained a weekday mid-morning staple. Eventually, WCBS gained a foothold in local news coverage (WOR and WNEW's strengths) bolstered by its standing as CBS's flagship radio station.

During the 1960s, CBS chairman William S. Paley was concerned about the station's low ratings, and that concern started a process that would lead to the creation of a news radio format that would become known as "Newsradio 88". This format debuted on August 28, 1967. Lou Adler and Harvey Hauptman -- both veterans of the previous WCBS MOR/weekday daytime talk mix -- were there from Day 1 of Newsradio.  The original roster of anchors also included Charles Osgood, Ed Bradley, Robert Vaughn (not related to the actor of the same name) and Pat Summerall. Also, first phase of Newsradio was a block from 5:30am - 8pm.

Initially, the station ran news in the drive time periods but maintained an MOR format during the midday and overnight hours, and within a couple of years, it ran all-news programming for much of the broadcast day except for overnights. "Newsradio 88" began its transformation into an all-news format in 1970, when the overnight American Airlines-sponsored Music Till Dawn ended in January of that year, and completed the process in 1972, when Godfrey's weekday morning variety show came to an end. The station built a reputation as an all-news powerhouse during the 1970s, and has continued with an all-news format to this day.

Although 1010 WINS has usually received the higher Arbitron ratings of the two all-news stations, WCBS has had the stronger ratings in the outlying suburbs because of its broadcast-signal pattern. Its traffic reports and news coverage includes more of Long Island and the northern and western suburbs of New York City than WINS, and it occasionally allows room for longer interviews and analysis pieces than does WINS. The station is less tightly formatted than WINS, and formats at a half-hour cycle instead of a 20-minute cycle.

Courtesy of

WCBS-AM Newsradio88 debuted inauspiciously on its little-heard FM Station on August 28, 1967, because a small plane demolished the transmitter tower on High Island in a fatal crash, knocking the AM station off the air. Interestingly, the debut begins with a staff announcer reading the WCBS-FM sign-on, followed by the "Star Spangled Banner." Then, anchorman Steve Porter reads an account of the air crash. Pat Summerall delivers the sports, Gordon Barnes the weather. The rather ponderous presentation includes few if any commercials, and virtually no news audio. Charles Osgood takes over from Steve Porter at 6:00 A.M. The producer of the broadcast was Mike Ludlum, the editor was Al Wasser. Audio courtesy of Bill Tynan, Manager of On-Air Promotion, WCBS.

Part One 8/28/67

Part Two 8/28/67

Courtesy of

30th ANNIVERSARY BROADCAST WCBS's LET'S FIND OUT -- 8/3/97. Hosted by Rich Lamb, this special broadcast looks back at 30 years of Newsradio88. With Charles Osgood, Lou Adler, Art Athens. First of two broadcasts. Audio courtesy of Bill Tynan (30:00) Part One: Click Here.

30th ANNIVERSARY BROADCAST WCBS's LET'S FIND OUT -- 8/10/97. Hosted by Rich Lamb, this special broadcast looks back at 30 years of Newsradio88. With Jim Donnelly, Harvey Hauptman, Rita Sands, Gary Maurer, Ben Farnsworth, Bill Fahan, Neil Busch. Second of two broadcasts. Audio courtesy of Bill Tynan (30:00) Part Two: Click Here

➦In 1987...Superjock Larry Lujack knew when it was time to leave The Big 89WLS. ABC had already bought out Lujack's contract amid sliding ratings and on Friday August 28, 1987, after a slew of televison cameras, newspaper and magazine reporters joined him for his farewell, a tearful Larry Lujack signed off from radio and from WLS. His tenure at the station spanned three decades.

Larry Lujack 8/28/87
Despite Lujack's cynical on-air persona, he was actually quite easy to work with, his former boss John Gehron said.

"He was a professional, worked hard at what he did," Gehron said.

"He was one of those personalities that surprisingly didn't cause any problems. His feeling was, you pay me and I'll do the job for you, and he worked very hard at it."

Lujack signed off thanking listeners "not just for listening, but also for caring."

➦In 2012…Boston radio personality David MacNeill, "the voice of the Boston Pops," died at age 80.   He worked classical WCRB 102.5 FM for 57 years. In the late 1950's he spent two years at KCBH 98.7 FM, Los Angeles but returned back to Boston where he forged a long radio career. He was best known for being the voice of the Boston Pops on WCRB Radio for countless years including broadcasts from Tanglewood. He is believed to be one of the longest running radio personalities in Boston history.

➦In 2016...83-year old Charles Osgood announced his retirement. He  is best known for being the host of CBS News Sunday Morning, a role he held for over 22 years from April 10, 1994, until September 25, 2016. Osgood also hosted The Osgood File, a series of daily radio commentaries, from 1971 until December 29, 2017.

Charles Osgood
Immediately after graduating from Fordham, Osgood was hired as an announcer by WGMS (AM) and WGMS-FM, the classical music stations in Washington, D.C. (today WWRC and WTOP-FM respectively). Shortly afterward, however, he enlisted in the military to be the announcer for the United States Army Band.

Stationed adjacent to Arlington National Cemetery at Fort Myer during his service with the U.S. Army Band, using pseudonyms Osgood worked as an announcer for radio stations in the Washington area to supplement his income and experience. He hosted the morning show on WEAM (WZHF today) as "Charlie Woods."  At WGMS, he called himself “Carl Walden.” At WPGC (AM) (WJFK (AM) today), a rock station, he referred to himself as “Chuck Forest.”

When his tour with the U.S. Army Band was completed, in October 1957 Osgood returned to WGMS full-time as announcer Charles Wood and as a special assistant to the general manager. Before the end of 1958, WGMS promoted him to program director.

Actress Barbara Bach is 75
  • Actor Sonny Shroyer (“The Dukes of Hazzard”) is 86. 
  • Actor Marla Adams (“The Young and the Restless”) is 83. 
  • Actor Ken Jenkins (“Scrubs”) is 81. 
  • Actor David Soul (“Starsky and Hutch”) is 78. 
  • Actor Barbara Bach is 75. 
  • Actor Debra Mooney (“The Practice,” ″Everwood”) is 74. 
  • Singer Wayne Osmond of The Osmonds is 70. 
  • Actor Daniel Stern is 64. 
  • Actor Emma Samms is 61. 
  • Actor Jennifer Coolidge is 60. 
  • Actor Amanda Tapping (“Stargate: Atlantis,” “Stargate SG-1”) is 56. 
  • Country singer Shania Twain is 56. 
  • Actor Billy Boyd (“Lord of the Rings”) is 53. 
  • Actor-singer Jack Black of Tenacious D is 52. 
  • Actor Jason Priestley (“Beverly Hills, 90210″) is 52. 
  • Actor Daniel Goddard (“The Young and the Restless”) is 50. 
  • Actor J. August Richards (“Kevin (Probably) Saves The World,” ″Angel”) is 48. 
  • Singer-bassist Max Collins of Eve 6 is 43. 
  • Shania Twain is 56
    Actor Carly Pope (“Outlaw,” ″24,”) is 41. 
  • Country singer Jake Owen is 40. 
  • Country singer LeAnn Rimes is 39. 
  • Actor Kelly Theibaud (“General Hospital”) is 39. 
  • Actor Armie Hammer (“The Lone Ranger,” ″The Social Network”) is 35. 
  • Singer Florence Welch of Florence and the Machine is 35. 
  • Actor Shalita Grant (“NCIS: New Orleans”) is 33. 
  • Singer Cassadee Pope (“The Voice”) is 32. 
  • Actor Katie Findlay (“How To Get Away With Murder”) is 31. 
  • Actor Samuel Larsen (“Glee”) is 30. 
  • Actor Kyle Massey (“Cory in the House,” ″That’s So Raven”) is 30. 
  • Actor Quvenzhane Wallis (“Beasts of the Southern Wild”) is 18. 
  • Reality personality Honey Boo Boo (Alana Thompson) (“Here Comes Honey Boo Boo”) is 16.

    No comments:

    Post a Comment