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REEL TOP 40 RADIO REPOSITORY

Robert O'Brian, KLCN, 1967
Robert O'Brian,
KLCN, 1967
Robert O'Brian, KRKO, 1978
Robert O'Brian,
KRKO, 1978
Robert O'Brian, 1995
Robert O'Brian, 1995
The Robert O'Brian Collection

By Robert O'Brian (Robert Witham)

It was way, way back in 1957 or '58 that I knew that radio had to be just about the coolest thing ever invented. I remember having a 7-transistor "Silvertone" radio from Sears under my pillow at night so I "wouldn't miss anything". I think I was in the 6th grade, and I remember listening to KAYO, KJR, KING, and later KTW and KOL as the "radio wars" started in Seattle.

There were people like Al Cummings on KING, or the Breakfast Club with Clifford and Clark, then, one day KAYO started playing records that featured artists like Fats Domino. My Father had a fit. "Don't bob your head to that music" he said at the breakfast table. I think my destiny was set at that point, I had to, some how, some way be on the radio. But, what a lesson I had to learn.

In 1961 I entered high school. I taped and played promos (cut by the Seattle Radio personalities) in the lunchroom at school. That was mv first meeting with Pat O'Day. Pat cut a promo for me to play at my lunch DJ party at school. Cool eh!

I fell in love with radio and everything it had to offer. I didn't get into broadcasting until I was stationed during the "conflict" at Blytheville, Arkansas for the Air Force, (not one enemy fighter made it past me). I witnessed the start of WMC-FM aka FM 100 in Memphis. I worked at KLCN in Blytheville, and tried to get it to sound good too. During that period of time, I returned home and recorded some tapes to take back with me to the airbase. This is how I happened to get these gems from some legends! I think you'll enjoy.

AS for my career, after leaving KLCN, I went to KGY in Olympia, to KALE in the Tri-Cities, to KNDO-TV in Yakima (oops a wrong move there) then to KRKO and KWYZ in Everett. Some brief stints in Seattle, and then into sales for Trader Publishing Company (I needed to make some money). I was at Trader for 9 years, now retired and loving it!

And now.. "Serving the 'Sound' from Seattle....."

The Repository thanks Robert O'Brian for sharing!

[Description author as noted]

G2/5.0 compatible TOP STREAM 44 Kbps (10 Khz)
Pat O'Day, KJR Seattle, November 1966 (RESTORED) (01:21:58)
Play Scoped This Exhibit 'SCOPED (34:34)

. . . never understood that line about a cartridge in a pear tree . . .

[Description by Uncle Ricky]

The legendary Pat O'Day is featured in this partially unscoped and edited composite of KJR. These are bits and pieces of Pat's 3-6 PM show on what is probably the Monday after Thanksgiving. Best Guess: Monday, November 28, 1966. This exhibit has been edited and some of the music on this exhibit has been restored.

Mr. O'Day overcomes many obstacles in this composite. And he perseveres, despite a malfunctioning EBS receiver, interference from Tom Murphy, the ever-elusive commercial copy, a seven-year-old co-host with a hangover, and his serious commitment to Julie Christie. Notice that he doesn't even cue some of the records, he just starts 'em and talks or makes guitar sounds until he hears the cue scratch. So casual!

And this exhibit is stuffed with classic commercial jingles. We are treated to spots for Vox, Nancy Sinatra for Coca-Cola, a sultry solicitation for Caravelle watches, the Dodge Dear Reb campaign, and a VERY smooth jing sing for Jay Jacobs? - never heard of it. Liked hearing it, though! And for you All-Americans, there a few classic PAMS jingles, too.

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G2/5.0 compatible TOP STREAM 32 Kbps (10 Khz)
Larry Lujack, KJR Seattle, November 1966 (RESTORED) (01:03:25)
Play Scoped This Exhibit 'SCOPED (19:35)

. . . well, bag that bit . . .

[Description by Uncle Ricky]

"Baby" DJ Larry Lujack was once a fast-talking nighttime rock 'n' roll DJ, bored to tears with multitudes of Public Service Announcements in this hour and even hosting "voting" on an obscure title by what must have been a local group - there's no other excuse.

This exhibit is mostly unscoped, and some musical selections were restored. The original recording was a haphazardly-edited sample of Lujack's 6-9 PM show on KJR. It sounds like a studio recording, probably from Monday, November 28, 1966. Large chunks of the program don't exist, as you'll notice from the time checks. In the restoration process, I tried to create a chronogically-correct and enjoyable feature from the available elements of the original show.

And again, what is it with the Public Service Announcements? Did they just dump them all into Monday nights? Lujack rushes through them and he's not reading for comprehension, he's just reading them as fast as he can so he can check them off on the log.

When you give away every record you play, and announce the winners, and claim to be all-request, and announce the requesters, a lot of local names get on the radio. Multiply this by night after night for some period of time, and you will understand one of the ways that KJR built a powerful community presence.

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G2/5.0 compatible TOP STREAM 32 Kbps (10 Khz)
Pat O'Day, KJR Seattle, May 1967 (48:36)
Play Scoped This Exhibit 'SCOPED (23:01)

. . . Serving the Sound, from Seattle . . .

[Description by Uncle Ricky]

It's a chilly afternoon in Seattle, but Pat O'Day is HOT on legendary KJR, with a unique *not the same old* playlist and great PAMS Series 33 "Fun Vibrations" jingles.

The Tripps Festival is coming up, there are some awesome commercial jingles, too, and the "automatic time tone" followed by the personality ID at the top of the hour is so very, very good.

In fact, this station, and Mr. O'Day, (despite the Granny bits!) was, as he says, Number One.

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G2/5.0 compatible TOP STREAM 32 Kbps (10 Khz)
Tom Murphy, KJR Seattle, May 1967 (27:40)
Play Scoped This Exhibit 'SCOPED (16:41)

. . . Wakoz is sort of a Mocha-flavored highway to magna cum laude . . .

[Description by Uncle Ricky]

It's Memorial Day, and the day of the Tripps Festival in Seattle. KJR is on top with World Famous Tom Murphy, who reports he "got to see Jefferson Airplane and everybody today".

Murphy's casual sarcasm sure sounds like Larry Lujack sometimes, and we can't help wonder how much of Lujack is Murphy and visa-versa. Is Murphy the only jock to have worked with both The Real Don Steele and Lujack?

Some of this exhibit was edited for technical reasons. Other portions were retained, despite the disappointments. We wish all of Don't Blame It On The Children by Sammy Davis, Jr. was included, but what we got is what we got, and that includes a lot of the Seattle Today newscast. Other segments suffered sticky-tape squeaky syndrome. (We didn't have access to the original tape, so we don't know if it was baked for relief.)

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G2/5.0 compatible TOP STREAM 44 Kbps (14 Khz)
TM Productions Where Your Friends Are Jingle Demo (14:30)
. . . it's not just what you say, but how you say it . . .

[Description by Uncle Ricky]

For some reason, this TM package seems most closely associated with WDRC in Hartford, CT., but this original demo for Where Your Friends Are features WOKY in Milwaukee and WIBG in Philadelphia.

This demo includes lots of early '70's memories, music and commercial jingles, and a number of cuts from the series. "Where Your Friends Are" was intended to be a complete marketing package for a radio station. Along with format-compatible jingles, you could buy artwork and promotional ideas for TV, print and billboards.

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G2/5.0 compatible TOP STREAM 44 Kbps (14 Khz)
TM Productions Image 73 Demo for WNBC (12:59)
. . . It's Got Balls . . .

[Description by Uncle Ricky]

"You know, it's been a long time since a jingle company came out with a real exciting ID series..." Or so they said in 1973. These jingles are representative of the great talent at TM Productions in 1973. Many of the cuts are reflective of the popular tunes of the time, while retaining traditional arrangements. The overall presentation is first-rate, too, even though the jingles sound better than most of the vinyl used in this demo.

Jingles for weekends and special events can define a higher form of radio station - a Place to Be, not just a brand name. (Weekends are WNBC days). Of course, the goofy "Oldies" DJ was probably a mistake... or was it still funny then?

I'm not a big fan of the "kid" vocal groups featured on some of these cuts, but it does reflect the family-friendly focus of the popular personality and music format at flagship WNBC. This is a fun old-timey jingle demo, and the Timmy Thomas cut — simple as it is — knocks me out.

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G2/5.0 compatible TOP STREAM 32 Kbps (14 Khz)
TM Productions Propellants Demo (10:46)
. . . You must be listening to us . . .

[Description by Uncle Ricky, contributed by Robert O'Brian]

This demo opens with a reference to TM's Phase II series, and it features the late Hal Martin doing demo duty for WCFL. It was probably created in early 1972.

In addition to Big Ten, these jingles are demonstrated for WIBG/Philadelphia and KILT/Houston. Later in the decade, they were also heard on WGNG/Providence and many other stations.

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G2/5.0 compatible TOP STREAM 32 Kbps (13 Khz)
TM Productions Listen To The Music Demo, 1973 (12:03)
. . . A promise immediately fulfilled, is a reward . . .

[Description by Uncle Ricky, contributed by Robert O'Brian]

Was TM's Listen To The Music intended to compete with PAMS' Solid Rock package?

If nothing else, we give TM credit for using a station from Norfolk on a demo. I mean.. how do you pronounce that?

In addition to WNOR, there are a few examples for WPRO, Providence.

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G2/5.0 compatible TOP STREAM 44 Kbps (14 Khz)
TM Productions Penetrators Jingle Demo, 1974 (06:22)
. . . You know, if we could only get people in radio to stop and think . . .

[Description by Uncle Ricky, contributed by Robert O'Brian]

Well, way back when, people in radio did stop and think - and that's probably what led to 8 stations in the same building. In the days of regulated ownership, radio stations had to find another way to be profitable. They had to have better programs, or personalities, or be better at serving their communities of license, or something other than owning their competition. Sometimes, they used jingles to subliminally coerce innocent listeners to remember their radio stations — purely to create profit, of course.

These TM Penetrators are SO Top 40 Seventies, I mean - this was it. These jingles really sound good, this demo is very inclusive of the Big Guys and it really does it. AND, these jingles accomodate the new CODE CALLS, because Call Letters were already old school by 1974.

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The Robert O'Brian Collection debuted on April 16, 2006.
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