|Top far left is DJ Lucky Logan (Norman Davis), who was on hand 6-23 when legendary Top 40 San Francisco Radio Station was honored by local Legends in Broadcasting. Also appearing were Djs Tommy Saunders and Gary Mora.|
|Visable from left are NORMAN DAVIS (Lucky Logan), TOMMY SAUNDERS and Ben Fong-Torres (back)|
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Remembering JEAN SHEPHERD and his
Christmas (Eve) Story
Great writeup by cofounder of Steely Dan about a pioneer of talk radio, when radio was still real fun and the ‘friend’ you’d take under your covers via transistor and go to sleep with. Didn’t know until now that Jean Shepherd has since become, perhaps, more known for his connection to The Christmas Story movie than the wildly popular ‘hip’ early talk show on NEW YORK’ s powerhouse, WOR. We grew up 3,000 miles away from where Shepherd reigned and never heard the man until recently, though we had many of our own out West ( Bob Sherwood, Al Jazzbeaux Collins, Russ the Moose Ssyracuse, Bobby Dale, even Ira Blue, but perhaps no one person who could put it all together in one ascerbic session like Jean Shepherd.Here’s Fagen, who can talk much more intelligently about Shepherd than we can
Remembering JEAN SHEPHERD and his Christmas (Eve) Story
KRLA Los Angeles Was Rock and Roll Radio Powerhouse 50s-60s – Top DJs
Last Sat night was a treat with Ride Radio (Seattle) and/or Top Shelf Oldies http://www.topshelfoldies.org/ playing the Top 50 from L.A. Powerhouse KRLA… One of the best surveys ever from this week in 1962 (Oct 26) as below…Fine guest DJ sitting in for the great Johnny G ….just heard #18 and #17 Torture by Kris Jensen and Leah by Roy Orbison. Don’t miss this Memory Flogger on future Saturnight nights, featurly various local, hometown surveys from the Golden Era… sounds you haven’t heard in years will bring back great memories. For now, we’ll highlight some of the show’s survey hits and other multi-media from that great LA station some of you probably grew up with. Let us know what you think and we’ll try to bring you some more ‘Hometown Countdowns ‘ surveys from various city and highlight some of the songs ini the future… After we hear the #50 hit, we’ll have a visit with original KRLA DJ , legendary Huggie Boy….
Let’s start things off with highlights from the above survey, counting backwards starting with #50 and the great Paul Anka and Esso Besso, a little bossa nova thing from Paul Ankahttps://youtu.be/UV5S5FCjMeY
We’ll Get Back to the survey in a minute, but let’s say hello to the top DJs of the Golden Era
KRLA / LOS ANGELES DJs
KRLA, PASADENA NOV 6-13, 1960 – Remember any of these DJs. We do -3 would go on to big TV gigs – Wink Martindale as a recording artist, DJ and game show host; Bob Eubanks as a rock and roll promoter (Beatles and others), DJ and game show host; Jim O’Neill as host of Shindig and other things, and Kasey Kasem would come soon to KRLA shortly after this survey. See additional survey and DJs below
‘HUGGY BOY’ DICK HUGG, KRLA
As promised, one of LA’s premier DJs, Huggy Boy, who was still announcing up to a few years ago. He has since passed. Others were Hunter Hancock, who also lived long and then there’s Art ‘Mr Oldies But Goodies’ Laboe, who is STILL announcing after all these years… to the mainly large chicano market that LOVES oldies in L.A. KRLA and KFWB were THE stations during the era. We’ll get into the DJs another time…https://youtu.be/zeJDDXJpe5A Hugg was a fixture at KRLA not only in the late 50s and early 60s but years later when KRLA lived on as an ‘oldies’ station. Hugg passed in 2012.
Classic LA sounds they still love on LA’s Art Laboe show, Mary Wells’ Two Lovers. Wells was Queen of Chicano oldies until she passed prematurelyhttps://youtu.be/oa4MqpN-A2k You’d hear Mary often on Huggy Boy’s show. He probably even interviewed her a time or two
Art Laboe is probably the last remaining active oldies DJ from the era, broadcasting Sunday nights KQIE . He’s a young 90 now and been around since the inception of R and R, helped promote the LA doowop sounds of the Penguins, Larks, Shields and many more on his Oldies But Goodies albums (he also coined the term) https://youtu.be/G03f_sCDBG0. Interesting how so many of the LA disc jockies have lasted, at least until recently. Wolfman Jack was another who spend a long time on LA stations including KRLA…
and then there’s THE ONE AND ONLY WOLFMAN JACK who came to KRLA. Here’s a classic aircheck of his https://youtu.be/GnJXLwnWDxI
The surveys back then had a lot of variety- all genres really including novelty, which you might classify this one by Jimmy Dean, Little Black Book that comes in at #40 this week in 1962https://youtu.be/9oQyNlYPNVU
Midnight Sun was a jazz standard l, a tune adapted as a pop tune by the 5 Whispers, an instrumental ‘extra’ reminiscent of Santo and Johnny you would have probably heard on KRLA also in 1962https://youtu.be/dHXUFjknWLo
KRLA jingles, DJ intros and sign-offs from the Golden Era of ‘the 11110 Men’ https://youtu.be/-YzFGAEW24Y Note the DJ names like then fast-talking Bob Eubanks and and Wink Martindale,another game show host who actually had a hit record (know it?), . KRLA was a true powerhouse, competing heavily against KFWB and later KHJ. Now they’re all memories… The call letters amy still be there but that’s about it… but they live on here!
From 1961 -one KRLA DJ was especially big on the East Coast, one Dick Biondi, who amazingly , is still on air today on WLS FMhttp://www.947wls.com/dick-biondi/ Chicago… learning a lot tonight on the Local Countdown show, which airs each week at this time on RIDE orhttp://www.TopShelfOldies.com 7-10 pm… Currently Elvis’ Return To Sender #6
BACK TO THE KRLA SURVEY for the week of Oct. 26, 1962
Do to time and media constraints, we’re going to jump to the TOP FIVE songs on KRLA the week of Oct.26, 1962…
#5 Bustin Surfboards – Tornadoes
The surf craze is hot and heavy, especially in LA and Currently playing at #5 Bustin Surfboard by the Tornados https://youtu.be/HGBIirV_9MU
#4 CHUBBY CHECKER ‘Popeye’
#2 CRYSTALS – He’s A Rebel
48 down and two to go…Well, you probably already know since we put up the survey (should have kept it a secret)… at #2 it’s Phil Spector‘s Crystals and a song written by Gene Pitney, ‘He’s A Rebel’https://youtu.be/G_SXJ18EkNw
Hunter Hancock goes back before rock and roll when he broadcast rhythm and blues in Los angeles… and broadcast un until a few years ago. He was perhaps the highest regarded of them all and had a real energetic soung… and helped get rock and roll into the mainstream playing and promoting the LA groups like the Olympics, Penguins and others… https://youtu.be/LVLmRLLrXtw
#1 FOUR SEASONS – Big Girls Don’t Cry
Drum Roll please…#1 with those boys from Jersey who are on a roll with the Four Season’s second no.1 in a row , ‘Big Girls Don’t Cry, following Sherry, which has dropped down but remains on this survey… Thanks for joining in on this classic KRLA survey on the Hometown Countdown Show… Until next week…It’s the Bopper signing off …Ending up with live performance of the song https://youtu.be/40bTOCv3_ak
Radio Museum Moves from Historic KRE Radio
Station in Emeryville to Alameda
2-14 It doesn’t seem long ago we reported, below, the California Radio Historical Society in its ‘new’diggs at the beautiful old deco KRE radio station building in Emeryville, CA. Just saw this morning this video of the CHRS moving out! Sad but true, yet founder Steve Kushman seems to take things philosophically here… So the CHRS era at KRE at the historic radio station near Oakland, CA now is a memory, but we’ve got it archived for you, below for posterity… not just for the old radios and CRHS memorabilia but for the radio station , which was one of the early ones – one of the three letter stations – with its high tower and all not far from the Bay Bridge. Hopefully the old KRE building will remain as a historical landmark but probably not in this day of developers scraping up
The Way It Was