October, November, December 2008


Delaney Bramlett dies


A songwriter,  recording artist and producer, Delaney

Bramlett influenced and made measurable contributions

to the careers of many notable recording stars, including

Leon Russell, Eric Clapton, Joe Cocker, Jimi Hendrix,

Janis Joplin, Dave Mason, Rita Coolidge, Billy Preston,

John Lennon, Elvin Bishop and Duane Allman.


With wife Bonnie, their biggest hit, �Never Ending Song

 of Love� was one of most popular songs of the early 70�s

and was recorded by more than 100 artists.  

At 69 years of age, Delaney Bramlett died Saturday, 

December 27th in Los Angeles as a result of

complications from gallbladder surgery.


= = = = =


My Christmas Tip


C. Crain's Wifi radio


My appreciation of radio was reborn last year with the

discovery of Wifi. Soon after the C.Crain receiver arrived,

I discontinued my subscription to satellite radio and

seldom listen to �local� radio anymore.


Why pay for programming when Wifi radio delivers it

with no subscription fee, free of static and offers far more

choices, including reception of most radio stations not

only in America, but worldwide.


No longer required to serve the community of license,

local radio offers little reason to listen, so in any week

I�m tuned into dozens of radio stations, not to mention

many exclusively streaming on the internet.


 Wifi radio operates much like any other and by

including the C.Crain "pillow speaker," I often listen

during the night while other family members

sleep undisturbed.


Lagging a little behind what�s happening in Europe 

and England, where Wifi radios are this seasons top

 Christmas item, they are selling at a steady pace in

America too.


I've received no consideration for endorsing it but I

do have a Christmas tip, buy yourself a Wifi radio,

 you�ll find a whole new and exciting world of

 radio listening.



= = = = =

Holiday Hug


Knowing the past best prepare us

for the future.


 In our country, radio and society for the

most part demonstrate little appreciation

for knowing, much less caring about anything

that took place beyond last Saturday.


Some of us who recall life during the

30�s and 40�s sadly discuss the concern

we have for more recent generations

who are so ill prepared for what lies ahead.


During this holiday period and perhaps

those in future years, joy might best

come from remembering the past.


With economic conditions clouding

our ability to give in the way we

have become accustomed, it�s a time

when we can certainly give the gift

that truly keeps on giving through

the holidays and beyond.

That of making certain our friends

and family know how much we

appreciate and love them.


How bout a �hug� for the holidays.


= = = = =


Omaha radio icon Steve Brown passes

Steve Brown

Working with top 40 pioneer Don Burden at Omaha�s

 1290 KOIL, he played a major role in the early history

of  Top 40 radio.  Steve Brown passed away Saturday,

December 13th at 68 years of age as he was preparing

to do his weekend shift at KFAB.


The legendary KOIL spawned dozens of the biggest

Top 40 radio stars including The Real Don Steele,

Gary Owens, Dr. Don Rose, Kris Erik Stevens,

Fred Winston, Dave Diamond and the voice

that would become the dean of Chicago

newsmen, Lyle Dean.

= = = = =

Goodbye Pal�.

Bill Drake


Bill Drake�s contribution of radio ranked with that of

Gordon McLendon. Now, isn�t it about time we make a

concentrated effort to make sure Bill is inducted into

 the NAB radio Hall of Fame?  Send your e-mail's to

John David - [email protected]


The passing of Bill Drake served as a communication

magnet for many fortunate enough to have known him. As

usually is the case, it takes the passing of someone to

remind us how much we appreciated them. And so it was

with Bill, whose passing sparked so many phone calls

and e-mail�s to me along with numerous comments and

coverage on the web from radio and record friends alike.


With my attention glued to Saturday afternoon football

on television, the first call came from Charlie Van Dyke

asking if I�d heard of Bill�s passing just a few hours earlier

and asking for Drake�s home phone number.

Stunned I quickly reached Bill�s long time companion

Carole for the details and after relaying them on to

Charlie, I sat in quiet disbelief remembering the man I

had known as a friend for more than forty years.


It would be tears off and on for the rest of the weekend as

by Monday I decided against making the trip to California

for the memorial just forty eight hours later. Carole

assured me Bill would understand as my mind raced

with memories.


 More recently as a member of the Hit Parade Hall of Fame

Bill was eager to vote for his favorite artist nominee Roy

Hamilton, who's 1955 "Unchained Melody" was Bill's

all time favorite recording.


�Are my reservations at the Rook ranch still on the books,�

he inquired. �Yes of course I said, I�m holding them

 open for you.�  Within a few weeks, that pain he

mentioned in his back would turn out to be the

precursor to cancer that would claim his life.


Memories of Bill are with me, but he won�t be coming.


Goodbye pal�.




His final interview

This past summer when KYNO�s John Ostlund asked me

to help him connect with Bill neither of us had any idea it

would be the final Bill Drake interview. 

Reelradio.com has it here.


He was my friend of more than forty years.


Bill Drake (Phil Yarbrough) passed away

in Los Angeles on Saturday afternoon,

November 29th at 71 years of age.


Bill had stopped smoking several years

ago but in recent months lung cancer would

take its toll when radiation and chemotherapy

could not stop its spread.


It was an over flow crowd and a day Bill Drake would have

appreciated as his many friends gathered to remember

him at the Little Brown Church in Studio City.


Chatting with his friends, they each had Drake-isms to

share as a flood of memories helped provide some relief

since learning of Bill�s passing last weekend.


Shooting pool with him at his Hollywood Hills home in

the early days of 93/KHJ, I had expected a more complex

response to my question of how the station had developed

such a forward motion, non-stop exciting presentation.

 Smiling, Bill simply patted his stomach and said in his

southern draw, �it�s from my gut my boy, we�re simply

given the listener what they want.�  It would encourage

me from that day forward to remove the blinders and

rely more and more on my own �gut.�


Bill Drake and I regularly exchanged programming

thoughts, including what records we would be adding. In

late 1969, with Bill at KHJ and me a WLS, we were in

disagreement over which side of a Sly & the Family Stone

release would be the hit. Obviously �Hot Fun In The

Summertime� suited Drake best for his California

audience.  I bet on the flip, �Thank You For Letting Me

Be Myself�. In the end, both sides were million sellers

 but the side I picked reached #1 nationally and Bill�s

 �Hot Fun� peaked at #2.  Offering his excuse for the final

outcome, Bill said, �Well hell man WLS has forty five

thousand more watts than we do at KHJ.�


Bill's naming me President of his company in

1969 was one of the most exciting events

in my radio career. 


Donations in Bill Drakes name can be made

to LungUSA at the American Lung Association.


Send your condolences to his good

friend and companion Carole Scott at

[email protected]


With his many friends, I'll remember Bill

  as a man of class, a gentleman, plain spoken,

 honest, loyal,  humorous...always with a smile.


I loved the guy.



From Radio-Info.com read

Bill Drake: a Legend, a Genius, a true Gentleman

Tom Watson sez it - here


A year ago, Radio & Records interviews

 Bill Drake  here.           

= = = = =

Jerry Del Colliano


 �More Music was Bill Drake�s commitment �

With respect to the audience, the advertisers buying the

commercials and the jocks whose careers he made

better for having been a radio programmer.

So forgive me for borrowing one of Bill's own familiar

production pieces to pay tribute.

Bill Drake was "Number One then (cue the crashing

tympani) -- And number one now".


Read Jerry�s �Why Bill Drake Still Matters� here.

= = = = =


Economic Pyramid Scheme


At this time in our nation�s history the wisdom of

one of our most influential founding fathers and

a revered jurist deserve review:


�There are two ways to conquer and enslave a nation.

One is by the sword, the other is by debt.�

President John Adams

1797 - 1801


�We can either have democracy in this county

or we can have great wealth concentrated in

 the hands of a few, but we can�t have both.�

Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis



The Internet and only a very few talk radio

hosts have given the award winning Zeitgeist

documentary the attention it deserves.


It�s one of the most informative and provocative

two hours you will ever spend. Tell others about

it and be sure you stay to the end for �the solutions.�

View it here


Decision Time


Once again the nominating committee is now in the

process of deciding the 2008 inductees at the

Hit Parade Hall of Fame and those who will

 become new nominees in 2009.


The vote of fans, number of recordings sold and other

factors considered important guide the nominating

committee in making a decision on who will be inducted.

Along with voting for their favorites, recording

artist with hits in any genre of music over a thirty year

period beginning in 1950 can be suggested by fans at

 the Hit Parade Hall of Fame website.


The 2009 Inductees and Nominees will be

 announced on January 5th.


You can vote now here 



Solar Powered



In San Francisco, KGO�s been consistently first in the

ratings game longer than any major market radio

station in America and now the station has been first

in that city to harness the power of the sun to supply

 the electrical power for the 50,000 watt transmitter

 of the northern California blowtorch.


But elsewhere solar power has been used long before now.

Among the first was KTAO-fm at Taos, New Mexico and

KZMU-fm at Moab, Utah.


 Taking advantage of year round desert sunshine,

 solar provides 100% of their electrical power.



Together Again....

Larry Lujack            John Rook


Yes, Larry Lujack and I are planning on launching a

 new syndicated format for radio in early 09.


Superjock and I have been great friends from our first

days at WLS and WCFL and we look forward to our

next chapter�.


Check back to this website for more news in

the days ahead�.

Cast your vote for Jerry Del Colliano in his bid to

become President of Radio's Conscience here





This accident happened in the Dallas -Ft. Worth area  

and you must take a moment to listen to it.

Click here


Radio�.take a bow


The volatility and polarization of the presidential

 run for the roses has been more than I can recall

in recent memory. 


Since it�s beginning in the early 1960�s, talk radio has

 been the diligent watchdog of government. While the

print media shared in this responsibility back then, in

more recent years the news they report has mirrored the

biased editorial page, lacks the immediacy advantage of

radio that is free and faces more and more a society that

either can�t read or doesn�t take the time to do so.


Talk radio has become more valuable than ever as a

disseminator of information making the public aware

 and encouraging their response on news and issues that

is happening now.  A newspaper shrinking in content

 is no competition for radio with a local talk show host in

morning and afternoon drive backed up with syndicated

programming and local news coverage.  


Addressing issues important to the local listener has

always been radio�s strength. �Playing the hits� - the

economy � the presidential campaign, even if from a

nationally syndicated talk show host can

be the top issue locally.


Were it not for radio, those heading to the polls

would be fewer in number. Instead, voters are

 projected to surpass all previous elections with

black and Hispanic radio playing a major role

in registering new voters .


Talk radio can take a bow for the major role it plays

in advancing the American dream.




                     Peggy                            Angie                      Terry


Having spent my early years in the Dakota�s,

I�ve always appreciated that spectacular

slice of paradise.


 Mount Rushmore, the beautiful Black Hills,

and while the prairie of North Dakota might not

measure up with as much appeal, that state gave us

some treasure as well - Peggy Lee,

Angie Dickinson and�.Terry Ingstad.  


Terry Who ?

His interview is here



Amos Heilicher Dies


Out of Minneapolis Amos Heilicher helped launch the

career of many music stars during the early years of rock,

a time when small independent record labels and big

 distributorships introduced hits to the entire nation.


His named spelled backwards, �Soma,� became the label

 that first discovered Bobby Vee in the late 50�s and

�Liar,  Liar" by the Castaways. "Surfin' Bird" by the

Trashmen and "Six Days On The Road" by Dave

Dudley are also among the hits given a giant

national start by Heilicher, who distributed to

retail record stores in many states.


 Amos Heilicher was one of the most influential

sources at a time when word from him of a records

success would earn it a leap up the national

Hit Parade.


On October 12th in Minnesota, at 90 years of age,

pneumonia has claimed the life of Amos Heilicher.



Radio Does It Best


Leading into the vote on Monday, it was talk radio

that informed better than any other media, including

TV and print. 


The rush to push the bailout through before the public

realized the implications of the legislation was once

again stopped by talk radio that encouraged

concerned citizens to register their discontent with

their representatives in Washington, D.C., who are

up for election within a few weeks.


It was a staggering defeat for congressional leaders

and the white house, but a major victory for radio

that delivered in depth information and the time

needed for open discussion on an issue of vital

importance to the public.


As was expected, those who supported the bailout

would ignore the large majority of citizens who

opposed the plan, including a giant slice of

congressional democrats that voted against the

leadership of their own party.  Instead, losers

blamed the defeat on republicans, dismissing the

fact they voted against the wishes of a republican



Of course, a new revised, slightly cleaned up bailout

is on the agenda already and will probably be

approved in the days ahead. But, thanks to radio

the public was the winner in round one. The facts

rallied the citizenry to action.


It was a reminder of the days before deregulation

when a licensee of the public airwaves was expected

to "seek out issues of importance to the public

and make them known."


No one does it better than....RADIO !




The Sky Is Falling


For a year or more while the print and TV were

 mesmerized with a menu of fluff news items already being

 covered by supermarket tabloids, talk radio once again

 gave advance warning of the economic peril we are

 currently facing, much like they did the impending

immigration fiasco that in its own way added fuel to our

current economic collapse


Now we have major consequences facing us all that could

have been avoided with responsible government that

listened to the public. Instead the nation and the world

 is adrift with no answers from our elected officials except

to throw good money after bad, something lending

institutions would be hard pressed to do in propping up

 a failed small business. While it would appear 

government will now step in to forestall the agony of a

depression, it still looms in the near future.


For some time at the direction of the white house, the �r�

word rarely found its way on to the pages of the print

media. Certainly the dreaded �d� word was avoided

 like a plague.


Openly discussing the situation, radio found many

callers-in forecasting the inevitable, believing that

despite a government shell game to the contrary,

 we were already in a recession, with what could

 become a depression brought on by fear and instability

from a lack of confidence in the government.


As readers to this site know, deregulation isn�t all that it�s

cracked up to be. With a responsible government and

regulatory overview with strict enforcement of laws

 that guard against overreaching, we would not now

be witnessing the most serious threat to our lifestyle

that most alive today could ever imagine.

 Instead, the sky is falling.



Elmer Dills


No one was a better dining out host than Elmer Dills,

whose radio and television reports sent waves of

Angelinos to little known out of the way eating

 establishments and broad smiles to the faces of

restaurant owners .


As program director of KABC in the mid 80�s, Elmer

introduced me to meals and lunches worthy of royalty

as all steps were taken to receive his endorsement.

I�ve never before nor since witnessed such dining.


Elmer Dills entertained heads of state as an officer with

the Central Intelligence Agency prior to entering radio.

At 82 years of age he died in Los Angeles on September

15th. My condolences to wife Lynne, his family and

 all who appreciated knowing Elmer, a real classy guy.




In recent years since its creation the Hit Parade Hall of

Fame has aimed to pay tribute to recording artists,

 many largely forgotten until now, who have brought so

much enjoyment to fans worldwide.


With the help of a very accomplished Nominating

Committee, the path to success for the Hit Parade

Hall of Fame has widened considerably.


Recently, Dr. George Pollard of the widely circulated

on-line magazine Grubstreet.ca inquired about our

doing an interview not only about my many years in

radio, but on a variety of subjects including the

 Hit Parade Hall of Fame.


I couldn�t resist and hope you will find my memories

of interest.

The Grubstreet interview is here.