Houston Retro Radio
Added June 7, 2012
"Found this old air check from 1970 and thought you might like to hear it. Have followed you on your web site and Twitter for a long time. Keep up the good work. "
Chuck McCann, A.R.E Network, Austin, Texas
KNUZ, Houston, 1970, Chuck McCann
Tom McKenzie Recordings from the 1970's
I received the following recordings from Tom McKenzie of Arlington in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. He recorded these KRBE & KILT airchecks at Texas locations far from Houston.
Added January 25, 2012
KRBE, Houston, 1976, Shotgun Cook
Added October 26-29, 2011
KRBE, Houston, 1977-1, Roger W. Garrett
KRBE, Houston, 1977-2, Roger W. Garrett
McKenzie wrote this about these recordings:
Here are two airchecks of the legendary Roger W. Garrett on 104 KRBE. KRBE was not limited to playing current top 40; they also played some previous hits and album rock. It was really fun listening to KRBE. The dial was not very crowded in the '70's and their signal could at times easily be heard in Corpus Christi. I regularly listened to the station from the Dallas / Ft. Worth area with my Pioneer SuperTuner.
These clips have some static as I recorded them in a car around Giddings, TX.
KRBE, Houston, 1975 or 1976, Wizard
Later, Tom sent the above recording of Wizard, another KRBE jock from the 70's:
Attached you will find a file with airchecks for KRBE's "Rock 'n Roll Wizard". The first two songs were recorded in early 1975 and the rest sometime later that year or possibly in 1976. This latter portion was recorded from here in Arlington, TX, which is some 250 miles away. Try to do that now with all the stations on the air.
KILT, Houston, 1979, Captain Jack
Tom also sent this KILT recording of Captain Jack:
I listened to your 1980 Captain Jack clips which reminded me that I had a recording from one year earlier of the good captain. I spent the summer of 1979 in Port Mansfield, and KILT was the station I listened to . . . The captain is definitely having fun here.
Hope you enjoy, and good luck in finding a great job. I can see you are a great professional. Also keep up the good work of giving us vintage radio clips.
When I first heard Mr. Blue Sky, a song on this recording, it seemed to call for an end to the gray, constantly drizzling winter of 1977-1978. The sun didn't come out for four months — at least that was how it seemed to me.
I first heard the song on KILT. During the last years of the decade, I spent most of my time working at KIOX in Bay City . That's only 80 miles southwest of Houston, and the KILT reception is very good.
Port Mansfield is much further down the coast, and it is one of the last coastal towns before the border. If you are ever curious about the weather in Port Mansfield, it is on my Gulf Coast Weather page.
KRBE, Houston, Papa John, 1976
KRBE, Houston, Tom Rivers, 1977
These two airchecks arrived with this message from Tom Mckenzie:
It's my pleasure to send you these pieces from my "library". I want to share the best of what I have as apparently there is very little of this history published on the net.
You know the migration of music from AM to FM has been a lengthy process, and apparently now music is going to satellite and internet. Subsequent generations will be further and further removed from what we were fortunate to experience.
I believe that technological advances, especially the FET which greatly improved receiver sensitivity, hastened the popularity of FM. As I remember it, FET's started appearing on the scene in about 1974-1975.
I have attached a couple more airchecks for you, Papa John is from 1976 and Tom Rivers is from 1977.
Tom originally recorded these items on cassette and did his own transfer to mp3. The files are small enough that he was able to send them in regular emails.
By the way, I still have my last remaining cassette deck. I keep it around in case someone sends me an aircheck on cassette. If you need me to copy some original cassette airchecks, please get them to me while I still have a cassette deck.
Fortunately, more and more people know how to make mp3 recordings from tapes. It makes it easier for me when I don't have to pick up a tape at the post office and mail it back. Nonetheless, feel free to send me a raw tape, either on cassette or reel-to-reel.
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On October 28, 2008, Bill Young wrote:
Spent some time today on your web
site ... wow!
You've got a lot more air checks
than I ever saved ... and some good ones too. Love hearing
Barry's scoped check and KO's intro to "In the still
of the night" is a classic! Wish we still had talents
like those guys still around.
You may not be aware that I brought
Jim Wood back to KILT for a few months. He already had
some serious health problems but was a very soft spoken
and kind man. His choices in life had taken a toll and
he spent a lot of time being 'in character' .... but he
was really a very gentle man.
But thanks for keeping the work
we all love alive!
Bill Young, Bill Young Productions
Bill Young was program director
of KILT at the time of most of the KILT airchecks. His voice
appears in many places on this site, including numerous
commercials and the intro for the Alex Bennett show.
Young also did the midday show at KILT, and you'll find
his airchecks on the Mainly '60's page. The Jim Wood recording is also on the Mainly '60's page.
Hudson & Harrigan
Added December 24, 2008
KILT, Houston, June
Hudson & Harrigan
I can't remember where I got this. Enjoy!!!
PS Any more KENR airchecks around?
I never recorded Hudson and Harrigan myself, and this is the first H & H aircheck to appear on this site.
When the first Harrigan joined the late Mac Hudson
in 1968, I never dreamed the names would still be a major
franchise 40 years later.
Apparently this material has previously appeared
on the internet. I don't go out of my way to collect airchecks from
other sites, but I will use them when people send them as mp3 files.
Even though I rarely listened to the show, the chatter on this recording brings back some personal memories.
H and H mention the massive street flooding which had struck Houston
a year earlier. During that period, I had to drive 80 miles each
way for my night job at KIOX in Bay City.
I lived on a Montrose area street that never flooded, but it flooded that day. I decided not to even attempt my absurdly long
commute to Bay City.
That decision didn't win me any points with the radio station,
but it turned out to be right one. When I drove to work the following
afternoon, I noticed abandoned vehicles all along South Main. If
I had tried to drive in the deluge, I would have never made it beyond
my own street.
This aircheck also mentions the recent appointment of Harry Caldwell
as Houston police chief. It was around that time that he appeared
on my Sunday night talk show on KIKK.
Please bear in mind that I am no expert on the Hudson and Harrigan
franchise and the various personnel changes over the years. I do
remember that the show started with the late Hudson Mac Roach, and
I also remember listening when he was trying out the first Harrigan.
Beyond that my memory is vague. In my adult life, I have never
been a regular morning drive listener. Whenever I have to experience
a day with 6:00 A.M. in it, I am in no mood to listen to the patter
if a DJ duo or nineteen minutes of commercials per hour.
I do know that there have been various other Hudsons and Harrigans
and that KLOL's Stevens and Pruett were some sort of breakaway continuation
of an H and H team. I am also fairly certain that this 1977 aircheck
does not contain the either the original Hudson or the original
Hopefully, the few facts I have stated here are correct. Perhaps
somebody who knows the entire history can write me a brief summary.
On November 2, 2009,Bill Bradley wrote:
Grady I'm sure someone else has already let you know this, but the 610 AM KILT Hudson & Harrigan clip from 1977 is Mark Stevens and Jim Pruett (before anyone knew their real names) of later fame on 101 KLOL. Love your site keep up the good work preserving Houston's radio History!
Thanks for the information. You are the first person write to me about this. Because of the date, I am not surprised to hear that it is Stevens and Pruett.
KULF IN THE EARLY 70'S
A Compilation from 1972 & 1973
Use this link to listen
to all of the materials at once. Individual cuts are listed
and described below.
program director of KULF in 1972 and 1973, sent this material
from Houston. KULF was one of the several incarnations of
AM 790. (For a more general background, please see "All
Receivers Are Go" in the column to the right.)
Even though I was not a consistent KULF listener, all of
the DJ's that Green mentions are familiar to me at
least as familiar as the KILT personalities of the day. The
AM 790 of 1972 placed a heavy emphasis on personality in both
its DJ's and its newscasters.
That gave the station a glow
that looked very different from the industrialized Demand
Radio style of 1962.
And yet, I don't recall hearing any abrupt, all encompassing
format change at a single time.
One thing that was usually
true from the 50's through the early 80's was that the station
aimed at a more mature audience than the reigning top 40 stations.
When did KTHT become KULF? My own recollection is that early
one evening I was driving by St. Joseph Hospital near the
I-45 overpass south of downtown Houston. I was not very far
from the KTHT studio in the Central National Bank Building.
I was tuned to the news on that station. At the very end of
the newscast, the announcer stated that KTHT had become KULF
on that very day. (I tend to think that this was in the fall
of 1969. If you have the exact date of the change, please
send me a note.)
Bob Green describes these KULF recordings as follows:
Here are several airchecks and other cuts from KULF circa
1972. The fact was that the MUSIC on KULF (essentially chicken
pop/MOR mix) didn't, by it's nature, define the station.
Incredible air personality-entertainers and self effacing
production helped give it definition ... your entertainment
Here are the cuts included:
Cut 1 & Cut
2: Bits from the Joe Bauer Show: Joe was definitely
the most talented air personality I have ever worked with.
Cut 3: Jim Tate
aircheck. Wonderful guy & talent
Cut 4: David
Fowler: A STYLIZED newscast!
Cut 5 & Cut 6: A few of
over 100 "Jim Tate your friend in the Morning"
promos we did, No script we just winged it. And as
for the "singing" my apologies.
Cut 7: Three
Promos for a Tate feature from Dick Orkin: "You had
to be There."
Cut 8: Promos
for the "KULF Big Balloon Race" at Astroworld.
Cut 9: Assorted
"Show & Tell" promos (same way as cut 5) cross
promoting our outdoor campaign.
Cut 10. Two
promos for "Vacation in Spain" giveaway.
Cut 11: "People
to like music by" promos
Cut 12: Ron Morgan
Birthday surprise. Ron had a "spot" indicated
on his log, but when he hit the cart- this is what happened.
Next is a "Simon & Gar" promo for Ron. Chutzpah
continued with my "singing."
Cut 13: Jim
Tate rode the Dexter Freebish Coaster at Astroworld to beat
the record for the Guinness Book. Here's the ride condensed
to 2 min.
A Roundup of Airchecks from the '70's
These airchecks came from other people.
The undated items seem to be from the early
70's. I determined the names simply by listening to the material.
In the case of K.O.
Bayley, I had to look up the spelling on the internet.
Please let me know if there are any errors.
KILT, Houston, Barry Kaye #1
KILT, Houston, Barry Kaye #2
KILT, Houston, Captain Macho with K.O. Bayley
KILT, Houston, K.O. Bayley #1
KILT, Houston, K.O. Bayley #2
KILT, Houston, K.O. Bayley #3
KNUZ, Houston, 1970, Chuck McCann
Houston, 1970, Scotty Morgan
Houston, 1972, Scotty Morgan
Houston, June 6, 1977, Beau Weaver
KRBE in the Mid 70's
Houston, Summer of 1975
Former Houston area resident Roger
Reini sent this material from Michigan. Reini states that
he appreciated "the clip of Buddy McGregor" even
though he is "too young to remember him in his heyday."
Reini recalls hearing that "Garner
State Park" anthem on an oldies show around 1979 or 1980.
According to Reini, that could have been either on a program
MacGregor had on KQUE or on another oldies show on KULF.
Web master's commentary: It's
hard to imagine the 70's without the National Lampoon.
I was a long time subscriber, and I've managed to keep a few
issues. I still have the issue with "Sargent Shriver's
Bleeding Hearts Club Band" as well as the Lemmings and Radio Dinner phonograph records.
They contain materials which wouldn't
pass muster for today's Political Correctness. The publication
took shots at all parts of the political spectrum and always
managed to reach new heights in low taste.
I remember that 3-D issue. The 3-D
idea is a fad that comes back from time to time but never
seems to stick.
A few days before I received this aircheck,
I saw the 3-D movie Beowulf (2007). Unlike the old
3-D glasses, the theater gave me ones with light grayish lenses.
The old kind of glasses used a red lens and a cyan lens. (Cyan
is the color of the border around the column you are now reading
. It is also called aqua.)
The National Lampoon had a real
radio program for a time. I remember hearing it on KLOL in
Added December 3, 2007
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