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Radio Waves Podcast #226

Radio: June 22, 2018 Last week I had a chance to sit down and talk with Chuck Martin, the last programmer of KHJ (930 AM) before the popular top-40 station went country in November of 1980. Martin and longtime KHJ engineer/production director Douglas Brown joined me and LA Radio Studio’s Michael Stark for a career-spanning audio interview of Martin that will be available shortly at LARadioWaves.Com. I’ll have details on the the interview and a story on Martin here when the audio interview...


Radio Waves Podcast #225

Radio: June 15, 2018 Richard Irwin was a former radio personality and program director at stations including KAFY/Bakersfield and KROY/Sacramento. He is perhaps better known as the man behind the top-40 radio online museum called ReelRadio, aka Uncle Ricky’s Reel Radio Repository, a site that featured hundreds of recordings of radio stations from around the United States and a few from Canada. Irwin passed away last week after a long battle with health issues that were causing him great...


Radio Waves Podcast #224

Radio: June 8, 2018 Big news for former KRTH (101.1 FM) afternoon drive personality Shotgun Tom Kelly: not only has he been selected to lead the Pacific Pioneer Broadcasters as the organization’s president effective September, 2018, he’s also landed at SiriusXM and will be hosting afternoon drive on channel 6 -- Sixties on Six. Kelly will begin his new show in “about a week,” he says. Kelly is the perfect person to lead the PPB. With an extensive radio and television background in both...


Radio Waves Podcast #223

Radio: June 1, 2018 As I was driving today, unable to hear parts of songs or worse, large portions of stand-up comedy from John Mulaney as I tooled around town listening to SiriusXM Satellite Radio, I figured I better do a followup to the reception-problem column I wrote a few months ago. Here’s what has transpired since that previous column: absolutely nothing. Unfortunately I put the issue on the back burner for a few reasons ... primarily that reception in my area seemed to improve...


Radio Waves Podcast #222

Radio: May 25, 2018 The Los Angeles radio scene lost two good friends recently. Bill Watson, who helped make RKO top-40 radio stations into regional format leaders as national program director under consultants Bill Drake and Gene Chenault, died May 15th at the age of 88. Watson was Drake’s right-hand man and worked with RKO’s KHJ (930 AM) here in Los Angeles in the mid to late 1960s, along with KFRC/San Francisco, WRKO/Boston, WOR/New York, and some stations outside of the RKO chain...


Radio Waves Podcast #221

Radio: May 18, 2018 When I was young, my father used to ask questions about Sam Hill. “Who the Sam Hill is that?” Or “What the Sam Hill is going on?” My brothers and sisters always wondered who Sam Hill was ... asking Who the Sam Hill is Sam Hill? I thought I found the answer one time while visiting downtown Prescott, Arizona, when I saw a store called Sam Hill’s. But I think the definitive answer comes from the All Access Music Group, AllAccess.Com, a website dedicated to the music and...


Radio Waves Podcast #220

Radio: May 11, 2018 Dave Beasing isn’t your normal radio guy. He spent ten years designing and programming The Sound (now KQLZ, 100.3 FM) and developing it into a ratings leader. Previous experience had him working with radio stations nationwide as a consultant with Jacobs Media, and he programmed KYSR (and its predecessor KXEZ) before the current alternative format. He’s always been an innovator, looking for ways to push the medium forward while recognizing its history. At The Sound he...


Radio Waves Podcast #219

Radio: May 4, 2018 Perhaps it is statistically insignificant, but it must be a nice feeling for the staff of KOST (103.5 FM) that the station finally led the Los Angeles ratings outside of the holiday music season. It happened in the March Nielsen ratings released in late April when KOST jumped more than a half point from February (to 5.9 from 5.3) and former leader and sister station KBIG (104.3 FM)dropped almost a half point (to 5.7 from 6.1). Rounding the top five were KRTH at 5.0 and...


Radio Waves Podcast #218

Radio: April 27, 2018 If you have an HD Radio -- a special radio designed to receive and decode the special digital audio programming sent along with the regular analog radio signal -- you may have noticed that KKGO (105.1 FM) has been sending a total of four digital streams. In addition to the regular HD1 stream that, like all HD stations, duplicates the analog programming, KKGO has long been providing an HD2 (simulcast of 1260 AM’s LA Oldies K-Surf) and and HD3 (recently changed to...


Radio Waves Podcast #217

Radio: April 20, 2018 One of the real treats of listening to KRTH (101.1 FM) in years past was the mid-day shift hosted by Brian Beirne, known to his many fans as “Mr. Rock and Roll.” He gave himself that nickname -- it’s a registered trademark -- after listeners told him he should call himself “Mr. Something,” but it relates to the fact that he is a walking encyclopedia of early rock and roll music, the artists who recorded the songs, and the producers who put it all together. For many...


Radio Waves Podcast #216

Radio: April 13, 2018 Flannigan Passes He only spent a sort time in Los Angeles, but a staple of the post-Drake success of RKO top-40 radio stations has died. John Mack Flannigan spent part of 1975 at KHJ (930 AM) but quickly moved to KFRC/San Francisco where he entertained the Bay Area for years and quickly became one of KFRC’s top personalities. Airchecks can be found on YouTube and -- if you are fortunate enough to have access -- on ReelRadio.Com. Flannigan was the epitome of the...


Radio Waves Podcast #214

Radio: March 30, 2018 Andy Chanley, the first and last voice heard on the late-great album rocker The Sound (now KKLQ, 100.3 FM) has found a new home: The New 88.5 FM. He replaces afternoon drive personality Sky Daniels, who leaves the 3 - 7 p.m. shift to concentrate on his programming and management duties. In making the announcement, Daniels said in a written release, "As 88.5 FM continues its rapid growth, I knew my responsibilities as GM and Program Director would intensify. Looking...


Radio Waves Podcast #213

Radio: March 23, 2018 The show finally dropped: iHeart Media, owner of 850 radio stations nationwide including eight in Los Angeles, announced March 14th that it had entered into a court-supervised restructuring through a Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing. This just weeks after giving bonuses to top-level executives. Interestingly, many observers miss the point. CNN reported, for example, that “The company has struggled with falling revenue. It was down in 2015, barely grew in 2016 and fell...


Radio Waves Podcast #212

Radio: Friday, March 16, 2018 KROQ (106.7 FM) morning team Kevin and Bean are raising money for the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund and Cedars-Senai NICU this year through the now sold-out 10th annual “Kevin and Bean’s April Foolishness” show, a charity event being held this year on Saturday, March 31st at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles. On hand for the show will be Doug Benson, Adam Devine, Bryan Callen, Jeff Garlin, Gabriel Iglesias, Mike Relm and Sarah Tiana. Over the past nine...


Radio Waves Podcast #210

Radio: March 2, 2018 Inside Music Media’s Jerry Del Colliano ( is predicting that iHeart Radio, owner of numerous local stations including KIIS-FM (102.7) and KFI (640 AM) is going to be bankrupt soon ... perhaps by the time you read this. Thursday March 1st was the day he predicted. And he’s often right. What would that mean for the world’s largest radio group owner? A huge mess, says Del Colliano. And he’s right, due in part to the company having kicked the can of...


Radio Waves Podcast #205

Radio: December 12, 2018 One of the weekend highlights of the former classic rock station The Sound (now religious KKLQ, 100.3 FM) was Mimi Chen’s Peace, Love, and Sunday Mornings, an eclectic musical program that truly harkened back to the days of KMET (now KTWV, 94.7 FM) or even KNX-FM (now KCBS-FM, 93.1). When The Sound found God, her show was without a home. At least for a while. The obvious place for her show is the new 88.5 FM, formerly known as KCSN. And that’s exactly where she...


Radio Waves Podcast #204

Radio: January 5, 2018 My grandmother listened to Hilly Rose for years on various radio stations; her enthusiasm for his show made me a fan too. I found his programs informative, educational, and entertaining ... one of the best of the first generation of talk shows as heard in Los Angeles. Rose passed away December 27th of natural causes. He was 91. Prior to his many years in Los Angeles, Rose perfected his craft in San Francisco at KCBS, KGO and KNEW; he was also heard (and seen) on...


Radio Waves Podcast #203

Radio: December 29, 2017 Longtime Los Angeles radio personality Cliff Winston passed away December 19th due to a heart attack. He was 63. His Los Angeles debut was in 1986 on KJLH (102.3 FM) where he stayed until he got an offer from the original 100.3 The Beat, KKBT in 1990. He returned to KJLH is ’93, went back to The Beat in 2006, and stayed through the transition to V-100 (KRBV). He remained at V-100 until the station was sold to Bonneville in 2008. He was The Beat’s original...


Radio Waves Podcast #202

Radio: December 22 For the 8th consecutive year, David Grudt -- a regular reader of this column -- is programming Sounds of the Season that will once again be heard on Ken Borgers’ internet tribute to the original KNOB (now KLAX, 97.9 FM). You can find it at It’s a 36-hour program that starts at noon on December 24th, Christmas Eve and ends at Midnight on December 25th, Christmas day. The show features jazz instrumental and vocal interpretations of holiday music...


Radio Waves Podcast #201

Radio: December 15, 2017 LA Oldies K-SURF (1260 AM, 105.1 digital HD2) has been moving up the ratings in spite of a signal that struggles to reach much of Los Angeles and little promotion. The latest Nielsen ratings had the station at 0.7 overall, and I am told that weekends are even more impressive. Now you can show your support for the only station in town that focusses on early (earlier) rock and roll from the 1950s through the early 1970s. As announced on the K-SURF website: “The...