Sunday, May 6, 2007

Meet 'n Greet

HRHBlogger Name: Bruce Williamson

Career history:

A pirate radio station, somewhere in Brazoria Co., Texas, ca. 1957:

On the left, a cheap, $5 crystal knock-off of an RCA-77DX; a stack of wax (containing every single released up to that time by Little Richard); a Sears Silvertone record player (33-1/3, 45, and 78 rpm!); leaning against the lid of the record player, a couple of KILT weekly surveys so I could keep up with what was hot, picked up at the local record shoppe (mostly I just played the latest Little Richard over and over); and, barely visible on the right, a KnightKit Transceiver from Allied Radio Shack of Chicago which I built and which threw a signal about 150 yards.

(Somewhat) More Professional experience:

KUT-FM, KLRN-TV, Austin, 1965-1968
KTBC-AM/FM/TV, Austin, 1967-1970
WBAP-AM, KSCS-FM, Fort Worth, 1970
KAUM-FM, Houston, 1970-1973
KLYX-FM, Houston, 1974
KODA-AM/FM, Houston, 1974-1981
KYND-FM, Houston, 1981-1982
KILT-FM, Houston, 1983-1996
KIKK-AM/FM, Houston, 1996-2001
KILT-FM, Houston, 2001-2005

Earliest childhood memory of hearing the radio: being awakened from a nap by the intro to the old daytime series Grand Central Station.

Read the intro.

Listen to an episode entitled Moon Blind.

Favorite childhood memory of listening to the radio: Hal Peary's laugh as Throckmorton P. Gildersleeve on the program The Great Gildersleeve (apparently you'll have to listen to a whole program to hear it). I used to beg my parents to let me stay up just to hear that every week.

Favorite childhood Saturday morning radio show: No School Today, with Big Jon and Sparkie.

"Okay, the little hand is almost on the 6 and the big hand is on the ten...."

The KTBC, Austin, studio, ca. 1968.


Anonymous said...

This is a fascinating website. Good information, well and nicely written and some amazing pictures and graphics.

David Gleason

Bruce said...

Thanks. Love your site too; in fact, I'm currently working my way through some of those resources, filling in some of the gaps in my knowledge. For those of you who don't know, David's website, an amazing collection of broadcast materials, can be found in the Radio History links on the sidebar of this blog.

Chuck Tiller said...

The Great Gildersleeve episodes can be found here:

Anonymous said...

jimckemp... glad I came across your website...I was the news director of KGBC radio in Galveston when it was owned by Jim Bradner in the 1950's; KLUF owned by George Roy Clough who became mayor during the period was one of the Island's most colorful residents. My radio editorial won the RTNDA award in 1959 and played a role in the election that changed the Island's government from the commission form to mayor/council and the shut-down of wide-open gambling and prostitution. Those were the good old days!

Anonymous said...

Hey, Bruce, from a guy who used to "spin 'em" at KLBS, couldn't you find any info on KYOK?

Lil'Joe in Conroe

Bruce said...

Lot's Lil' Joe. I haven't created a station profile page for the station yet but check out the Chronology for 1950 Part I and clock on the Label KYOK at the bottom for more, or use the search window.

Now don't leave me hanging on KLBS. You know more? Or more about KYOK? Email me, please, and fill me in. Bruce

Anonymous said...

Back atcha, Bruce. You remember as much as I do about KLBS. Myself and a high school buddy, Weyman H. D. Walker and I were allowed by Tom Cavanaugh (I guess) to "sit-in" with a jock, whose name I can't even come close to, and "stack wax" for him. I do remember Hotsy Totsy of KYOK fame, though, and ashamedly found your mention of "Your OK Station in Houston!" You did leave out Zing Zang, though! Of all that era, all I really recall other than the names of Ambrose, Oldag, Spivak and Stevens, was Hotsy's line of "This is KYOK, ya OK station in Houston, with Hotsy Totsy, Zing Zang and all the gang!" It was so catchy no one could forget it.

Now, get into the 60s, I did pal around with another name you are missing, Casey Martin, who later moved into the TV arena at KEYH.

God Bless America!

Lil'Joe in Conroe

Bruce said...

Lil' Joe - thanks for reminding me of Zing Zang. I always thought I was leaving someone out but couldn't come up with a name. Great station.

What time frame was this that you sat in at KLBS? Besides Bob Byron, mentioned elsewhere on this blog, the only dj I really remember was Reed Farrell, who referred to himself (and was referred to by the other jocks) as Feed Barrel. I never knew if that was because of his size or the fact he had a live remote from Youngblood's Fried Chicken on South Main, daily, I think, during which he roamed the restaurant interviewing customers and giving away free dinners. He was a hilariously funny jock. He left several months before McLendon took over in 1957, went to Peoria, as I recall, but I've never been able to find anything about him. Along with Bob Byron, my other favorite dj on KLBS, he was one of my inspirations for getting into radio.

Some of the other names who worked there - Larry Kane and Kent Burkhart. I don't remember hearing either of them and you may have never heard of the second guy but he has quite a name in radio as a long-time programmer and consultant and is in the Texas Radio Hall of Fame, I believe.

Just before McLendon took over in the Spring of 1957, radio listings for KLBS showed jocks named Mike McKay, Mark Noble, Bob Youngue, Dave Chase and Bob Gwyn. I think the first two were the only ones still around after McLendon took over, both relegated to overnights or weekends.

Sally said...

Hi, I put up a couple photos of you. I realize now that your blog thinks my name is Sarah while you might remember me as Sally. My FB page is Sally Williams.

Bruce said...

Hi Sally, of course I know who you are, whether you go by Sarah or Sally. We had good times at KODA, fun staff. Posted a couple of comments on your blog a few months ago. Now about these pictures.... got any of KODA, KILT, KNUZ to share? Why don't you contact me directly - my email is on my profile page. I don't know nothin' bout no facebook.

Brian said...

Interesting material, I ran across this website when googling the call letters KTUE. Apparently that was a station in the late 1920's (wow almost 100 years ago!) in Houston.

I dont know who or if the call letters were in use from 1930 to 1954 when that set of letters was assigned to a small daytime station in Tulia, Texas.

I now own that old station (off the air)... the building, the tower, and the land.

Fun to look back in time and 'read all about it'!

Bruce said...

Thanks Brian. The Uhalt Electric Company is what the call letters meant when it was in Houston. The owner's name was Uhalt. The calls changed in 1930 to KXYZ and those calls are still in use on the same facility.