Tuesday, October 10, 2017

More Transmitter Pics

From Doug Virden:

"Let's not forget the reason I was able to visit the KAAY transmitter building, the reason being was to pick up a remnant from the old RCA transmitter for Bud.  I  ended up taking a meter and some tubes which I sent Bud a few weeks ago.  I  got to take me home a meter and some tubes too.  I will let Bud do the honors of posting what he received, here are pics of mine."

Thank you, Doug!  I believe the Per Cent meter referenced modulation;  The tubes are part of an RF deck, and are 813 power tubes mounted in hefty ceramic bases.  Here is a vintage advertisement:

A great many Amateur Radio operators used these in home-built amplifiers for 160 meters (the Ham band just above the AM broadcast band, 1800 to 2000 kHz) and ran them for about 1,000 watts, reliably, for years.  They are tough tubes, able to take lots of abuse.

I will have to look around, I think I had a schematic for the old RCA transmitter somewhere, by the time I post my tubes and 12.5 kilovolt meter Doug sent me, I hope to have data on where they were in the RF chain.

Thanks again, Doug!

Bud S. (staceys4@Hotmail.com)

Friday, October 6, 2017

Jerry Sims, The 2nd "Sonny Martin"

Here is a picture, shared by Doug Virden, on the KAAY-Mighty 1090 Facebook page....

I heard Jerry when I was 9 years old; when Jerry came through Mobile on a sales trip to Florida for his last employer (Hank's Fine Furniture), he stopped in Mobile and we had supper.  We calculated the years and, by gosh, we came to the same conclusion!  And he was so young back then!  later, I was able to make a trip to Little Rock in April 2012 (see other posts to this topic) and we had a great time!  Then, in August that same year, we lost Jerry.  He was doing what he loved: playing softball.  He collapsed on the field in extreme heat conditions and never regained consciousness...

...and a year later, in the same month, I almost died from heat stoke.  Two things ran through my mind: is this how Jerry went? and, what will my family do?  Fortunately, I recovered and have harped on safety re: heat-related injuries for all these years afterward.

Rest easy, Jerry, I'll see you in heaven....

Bud S. (staceys4@Hotmail.com)

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Doug Virden Visits The KAAY Transmitter Site

"Had an unexpected opportunity to visit the KAAY transmitter building last week and here is a great starter pic with the 7th Street sign.  Ever since Bud and David B. Treadway (and don't forget Jerry Sims, too! bs) had a picture with it, I really wanted one too.  The reason I got to go out there was to pick up something from the old RCA transmitter that had been dismantled to put up the new 50KW transmitter.  I ended up taking something from the old RCA home with me too.  It will be included in another post."

That's a good picture, Doug!  Keep 'em coming!

Bud S. (staceys4@Hotmail.com)

Sunday, September 24, 2017


Folks, I just heard from Jonnie King; he has just celebrated 50 YEARS in the broadcast industry!

I cannot tell the story like Jonnie King can, so, if you will, please go to his website and read all about it!


Happy anniversary, Jonnie!

Bud S. (staceys4@Hotmail.com)

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

QSL Cards From The Past!

Thanks to Larry McDonald for these reception verification ("QSL") cards from the past!

Bud S. (staceys4@Hotmail.com)

Friday, September 8, 2017

"Big Mama" Is Gone....

I was just informed by KAAY's head engineer that the RCA, "Big Mama", as David B. Treadway called her, is now gone.


...and no more:

My heart hurts!  I am so thankful that Jerry Sims, the 2nd "Sonny Martin", now gone also, pleaded and cajoled with me to make the pilgrimage to Little Rock and Wrightsville, AR to see this once-magnificent radio station.  I was tearing up heavily when I saw David B. lovingly caress her face, then listen for her as he pressed his ear to her...as I am about to now.

That's Gordon Stephan behind David B.

And, to Jerry Sims, who made me actually realize my dream:

I can't say this enough: I love you guys, for caring enough to show me around and taking time with me, a humble fan from so long ago.  One other Great, Charlie Scarbrough, "Charlie King", who took the time to ferry me and my family around, thank you SO much!

I will always have fond memories of KAAY, and especially of this trip.  A few months later, Jerry Sims died from a heat-related incident while doing what he loved: playing softball...but that's another story.

At the top left-hand corner of this blog, type in "my trip" and search; post after post will come up, relating to my trip to Little Rock and Wrightsville, AR back in 2012 and will reveal all the wonderful pictures and memories I experienced.  One more chapter closed on KAAY.  Thanks, Daniel.

Bud S. (staceys4@Hotmail.com)

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Happy 55th Anniversary!

My, how time flies!  Fifty-five years ago this moth, KAAY came into being and the "Baby Elephant Walk" song permeated the airwaves for a while, as deejays read aloud the Little Rock phone book, saying the folks were "friends of the Mighty Giant", etc.


This signaled the format- and callsign change- of 1090 AM in Little Rock, AR, as KAAY bought out KTHS and became the Mighty 1090, KAAY that so many of us loved.  It happened Labor Day, 1962.  The history is slightly murky as to who the original jocks were, as some left, others came right in, but here are links to previous posts we have entered, as well:


...as well as a few posts from A. J. Lindsey's now-inactive blog:


Yes, we have plenty to celebrate!  For my article regarding KAAY in the Encyclopedia of Arkansas, go here:


I was honored when they asked me to contribute!  No one had ever entered any information on perhaps the greatest radio station Arkansas ever had, so they encouraged me to arrange this article.  After a few months' work, and honing and polishing, and with the help of some of "The Greats" of KAAY, this was the finished project.  Enjoy!

Happy anniversary, KAAY and to you Greats who brought us so much wonderful entertainment!

Bud S. (staceys4@Hotmail.com)

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Keepin' 'Em Cool....

Larry McDonald, son of Felix McDonald, found this as the family was cleaning up at the McDonald farm.  he says he'll bet this is the only survivor.  Does anyone know what the McDonald's favorite soft drink was?

Thank you, Larry!

Bud S. (staceys4@Hotmail.com)

Friday, July 28, 2017

"The Hotline"

Larry McDonald posted this on Facebook, his comments follow:

 "It is a phone hotline my dad helped build the station it was called KTHS before Linn broadcasting made KAAY. I watched them change the letters on the transmitter building, it went from there to the Mighty 1090."

Thanks, Larry, for all you and your dad did to keep this mighty station on the air!

Bud S. (staceys4@Hotmail.com)