Wednesday, July 22, 2009


In answer to some previous inqueries, let me clarify the story of "KAAY: After Dark".

When I was hired by Mike McCormick (Barry Wood, PD) & Pat Walsh, GM, in April of 1969, it was to help with the nighttime listening audience that needed to be locked-in in the 8pm-11pm time slot.

The reasoning was simple: the afternoon-drive shift ended at 6pm. From 6pm-8pm a religious block was aired, and the station needed a strong lead-in to get not only the local listeners back, but the rest of the country (and the World). That's where I came in.

My job was to fill those 50,000 Watts of coverage with Rock 'n Roll, Top 40...the biggest hits, the best oldies, and, the up-and-coming sounds that were the staple of AM Radio at that time. Shortly after I arrived, I was also appointed Music Director to ensure that those sounds were consistent, and with my history & background, I also brought to the table many record industry connections that got us much well-deserved National recognition. I wanted the legend & history of that dynamic Radio Station to be acknowledged far & wide.

"Beaker Street" with Clyde had been consistent with the Album Oriented and "Underground" crowd, but the mass-appeal lead-in that followed the religious block had to be strong enough to stand on its own. That was my job.

So, going back to the original topic of this post, KAAY/1090 "After Dark" began at 8pm, NOT 11pm, and solidified the stations dynamic that reached deep into the night.

SPECIAL NOTES: Clyde Clifford was the only host of "Beaker Street". And he was just perfect for that shift, always did a super job, and created a great following that lasts to this day. Clyde was a good friend, and as MD I was able to work with him to get some of the most dynamite cuts on the air. I always tried to make sure he had "the best of the best" well as some cool "left field" cuts. (Anybody remember Jaime Brockett's "Legend Of The Titanic" ? That's what it was all about !)

All stations need financial stability to stay in business. The religious block (that I ran from 6p-8p at the main studio prior to my show) brought in about $100,000 a year...which sure helped pay Clyde's & my salaries !

Jonnie King


  1. Hi Jonnie,
    Thanks for the post! KAAY was certainly a unique station, with its mix of news, music, religious programming, and Beaker Street. Thanks for helping to make that happen!

    As for Beaker Street: as you noted, during your stay at KAAY, Clyde was the guru of Beaker Street, and for those folks who were with him from the beginning (1966), he _was_ Beaker Street. Certainly, he owns the patent on the concept, format, and presentation.

    But if I remember correctly, Clyde disappeared from Beaker Street in 1972. (I listened to Beaker Street from 1968 to 1976.) KAAY continued the show, and I remember listening to ''Ken Knight,'' ''Tom Roberts,'' and Stuart. On his blog, A.J. collected some info and audio clips on post-Clyde Beaker Street
    ( ).

    I remember all these people doing their best to preserve Clyde's concept, and I remember some good nights of listening. I can imagine the post-Clyde presenters were a bit humbled when they realized that they were following in Clyde's footsteps. And I can also imagine that there are some listeners out there who listened to Beaker Street for an extended period in the 70s and never once heard Clyde at the controls.

    Thankfully, we can hear Clyde every Sunday at; I'm very grateful that Clyde still comes through for us, every week, after all these years!

    Thanks again for the post!

    Best regards,
    Dave S.

  2. Dave,

    Yes,you're right about Clyde leaving...KLAZ was being put together at that time ('71-'72).

    I guess what I should have stated was that Dale (Clyde Clifford) was the only one to use that name on Beaker Street


  3. Do I remember The Legend of the U.S.S. Titanic! It took me ten years to find that album. Clyde Clifford and Beaker Street were the influence for the music that I still listen to today. I bought a lot of albums because they were played on Beaker Street.

    Jeff Madison Wi.