KRLA 1110 AM
The year was 1959. Dwight Eisenhower was in the Oval Office. Soviet Premier Khrushchev and Vice President Nixon held their famous "kitchen debate" in Moscow, while down in Cuba a young man named Fidel Castro seized power. Two new states were admitted to the Union, bringing the total to 50. A gallon of Ethyl gas cost about 27 cents, making it pretty easy to fill up your brand new Ford Edsel. Ben-Hur won twelve oscars at the box office. The Baltimore Colts were the NFL champions, beating the New York Giants 31-16 in the playoffs. Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and J.P. "The Big Bopper" Richardson died tragically in a plane crash near Clear Lake, Iowa. Bobby Darin topped the charts with Mack The Knife, while Phil Phillips sang about the Sea Of Love. Playing these hits (and many, many more) was a small Pasadena radio station located at 1110 KHz on the AM dial. It had just changed its call letters to KRLA. Signing on in 1942 as KPAS, the station became country KXLA three years later. Tennessee Ernie Ford, Cal Worthington and Jim Hawthorne were three of the announcers. When the station was sold to Eleven-Ten Broadcasting, they became KRLA, the second AM top-40 station in Los Angeles, competing with KFWB "Channel 98" in the early '60s. In 1964, when the British invaded America, KRLA seized the moment and became the first southland station to air The Beatles. Emperor...