Dave Smith standing close to the NASA sign, below Dave Smith standing close to the NASA sign, below.


Tom Hally
Tom Hally at WBRW

Dave is riding a bicycle in the woods
Dave, far from the Information Superhighway.

The Dave Smith Collection

Dave Smith writes:

"I grew up in North-Central NJ listening to New York flamethrowers such as WOR, WABC, WCBS (AM&FM) and WNBC. Originally I went more for the spoken word type programs such as the story-telling of the late Jean Shepard ( for airchecks) and the CBS Radio Mystery Theater. It wasn't until the late 70's that I started really getting into recording top-40 radio, which makes me a "jolly come lately", I presume.

What lit my flame was hearing "radio over the radio" rebroadcasts of the Ron Jacobs Cruisin' series played on WHAS, Louisville. It took over ten years (and trips to 6 cities) but I was fortunate to obtain original pressings of Cruisin' (55-69), an accomplishment I am still proud of. Don't let them tell you "it's impossible", which many tried to tell me.

About a year ago, I started cataloging and cleaning up my collection. It is amazing how good some things sound once the heterodynes are removed! Only after seeing another Golden Gift on REELRADIO did I realize that I had something worth sharing and that's when I wrote Uncle Ricky.

All of my experience on the commercial broadcasting side of the mic comes from watching my Stepdad, the late Tom Hally, to whom this page is dedicated. He played Big Band stuff and the accompanying photo was taken at WBRW, 1170, Bridgewater NJ, while doing his Sunday Serenade show.

Today, I am back to listening to mostly spoken word (mainly news) with some oldies thrown in, but things are not the same. Skywave no longer has that "travel to a far town" mystique, as one can often hear the same program in 5 or more cities. When I'm not listening to the radio, I spend my time as an Engineer for NASA (in computers and communications, not the rocket side) or riding my bike on the C&O Canal. Of course, I spend plenty of time with my lovely wife, Liz (who thinks this old stuff makes me nuts).

73's for now.
Dave Smith

The Repository thanks Dave Smith for sharing!

[Descriptions by Dave Smith, unless otherwise indicated]

G2/5.0 compatible TOP STREAM 20Kbps (10Khz)
Hurricane Carol, WBZ Boston, August 31, 1954 (02:34)

. . . stay in your homes . . .

[Description by Uncle Ricky]

The 680-foot WBZ-TV transmitter tower falls on the WBZ Radio building as Hurricane Carol attacks the New England coast on August 31, 1954.

And the newscaster (who I hope will be identified in COMMENTS) just picks up where he was before the tower fell. You couldn't write a better script than this! Right after we are warned to stay in our homes, the tower falls on the studio with a tremendous BOOM, and he is not sure if he is on the air! Thankfully, he is able to warn us to STAY CALM and that our ONLY DANGER IS.... before he is cut off. WOW! Now THIS builds quarter hours!

Let me know if I am still on the air, will you please?

One online source claims that WBZ-AM was only off the air for 3 minutes. This recording was edited before it got to the contributor, and I don't believe it is chronologically accurate. I do believe this recording was made from microphone to speaker (accounting for the background chatter) and at some distance from the station, and that this copy was transferred from a noisy acetate. But after all, there were no memory sticks in 1954.

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G2/5.0 compatible TOP STREAM 20Kbps (10Khz)
Joe Donovan presents Alan Freed, AFRTS, 1956 (29:10)

. . . a legend in his time . . .

LIVE performances from Count Basie and his Orchestra, Laverne Baker, The Platters, Chuck Berry and Bill Haley and the Comets headline this lightning-sprinkled genuine off-the-air aircheck. We hope that Joe Donvoan will contribute the original recording, (sans static) for our non-profit Repository. In the meantime, our thanks to Dave Smith for sharing this treasure with REELRADIO visitors.
[Description by Dave Smith]:

This recording of Alan Freed for the AFRTS was rebroadcast on Joe Donovan's Friday Night Revival on WHAS/Louisville on September 23, 1988. Joe introduces it as produced for the Armed Forces Radio and Television Service in 1956.

The program appears to be a "highlight" show as it was produced with many obvious edits. It was recorded on a Hammerlund HQ-140X communications receiver in Kensington, MD, so the bandwidth and quality is subject to those conditions.

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G2/5.0 compatible TOP STREAM 32.0Kbps (16Khz)
Joe Donovan presents Tiny Tim Tindall, KIMN Denver, 1961 (21:31)

. . . The Station of the Stars . . .

[Description by Dave Smith]:

This is an edit of the best parts of four or so rebroadcasts of Joe Donovan's Friday Night Revival on WHAS in Louisville, Kentucky, from 1984 to 1988. The equipment used varied, as did the receiving locations (all over New Jersey and Maryland.) Each time, Joe would play a different segment of his 70-minute tape with some overlap between each piece. You will hear him announce that the entire aircheck was from 1960, but further analysis shows two parts, September 1960 and September 1961.

This is the 1961 piece, only, and it was recorded by me on September 2, 1988. It features Tiny Tim Tindall on KIMN in Denver.

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G2/5.0 compatible TOP STREAM 20.7Kbps (8.5Khz)
Melvin X. Melvin, WMEX Boston, January 31, 1965 (08:56)

. . . you'll win an autographed coffee cup that was just used by me . . .

[Description by Uncle Ricky]

When this exhibit was first posted, we didn't know the true identity of the Melvin X. Melvin on this aircheck. I thought it might have been Game Show Host and Actor Jim McKrell, but no one agreed. He sounds a lot like J.J. Jeffrey, and that seems to be the consensus (see COMMENT, below).

In addition to lots of PAMS (and a couple of time) jingles, you'll hear Reverb On Demand and Jack Gale on production elements for the Secret Agent 1510 promotion. Just a few months after this aircheck, Gale (Fenway) joined ex-WMEX Sales Manager Stan Kaplan at WAYS in Charlotte, N.C., where Agent 1510 became Mr. Treasure. This is a rare aircheck from the "glory" days of Max Richmond's WMEX, before WRKO was a Top 40 station.

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G2/5.0 compatible TOP STREAM 20.7Kbps (8.0Khz)
Dan Donovan, WMEX Boston, 1966 (09:09)

. . . The boss is very nice, he gives me an extra added hour every Sunday . . .

[Description by Uncle Ricky]

This recording of Tiger Dan Donovan on Boston's WMEX sounds as if it was made with the "microphone in front of the speaker" method. The WMEX reverb sounds pretty good, but the editing is not contiguous, and hence, a bit choppy.

Still, this exhibit captures a lot of Donovan's polished high-energy performance, and a bushel of PAMS, Pepper-Tanner and CRC jingles. You'll also hear a couple of classic spots, several promos and station features. It's all in this very intense 9 minutes, a worthy sample of this legendary Top 40 station.

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G2/5.0 compatible TOP STREAM 20.7Kbps (14.5Khz)
Joey Reynolds, WFIL Philadelphia, May 1985 (01:52:48)

. . . supercarelessunrealisticandyoudiefromoverdoses . . .

[Description by Dave Smith]:

This unscoped but edited recording of WFIL from May 9, 1985 runs for approximately 10 minutes from the start of the show, followed by a 1.5 hour gap, with several smaller gaps later. This was recorded while I was in college, pulling all-nighters for exams!

It starts with the jolting "Wake Up!" (From Cheech and Chong's "Sister Mary Elephant") followed by lots of high energy dialog. I liked the chemistry between Joey Reynolds, Jeff Collins and Bill Marshal.

Like so many good things in radio, one day, *poof* they were gone. There was no fanfare or an official explanation (that at least I ever heard), just a substitute DJ who didn't seem to know why he was there.

Let's give a memorial chant... "AM..AM..AM..AM"!

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G2/5.0 compatible TOP STREAM 20.7Kbps (14.5Khz)
Scott Taylor, WFIL Philadelphia, 1985 (01:39)

. . . AM! AM! AM! AM! . . .

[from Uncle Ricky]:

Joey Reynolds had disappeared, and how rare is this? There is obviously an employment contract dispute, and the "replacement" is obviously pro-Reynolds. And we are treated to a classic "inside" radio bit. I suspect that Reynolds did not return to WFIL in 1985, but of course, this website is an evolving record of the Undisputed Truth.

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Additional Exhibits in The Dave Smith Collection...
Dandy Dan Daniel, WMCA New York, April 22, 1963
Robert W. Morgan, KHJ Los Angeles, October 18 1968
Joey Reynolds, WDRC Hartford, CT. September 23, 1969, Part 1
Joey Reynolds, WDRC Hartford, CT. September 23, 1969, Part 2
Murray The K, Soundtrack Of The Sixties, September 27, 1980
Gary Owens, Soundtrack Of The Sixties, March 28, 1981
Joe Donovan, WHAS Louisville, KY January 17, 1997, 3-4 AM

The Dave Smith Collection has been a part of REELRADIO since February 18, 2001

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