Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Beaker Street aircheck - New Year's Eve 1971, Parts 3 and 4

Here are Parts 3 and 4 of the 4-part aircheck of the December 31, 1971, broadcast of Beaker Street with Clyde Clifford.  (Parts 1 and 2 are available here, and here is a scoped summary of all four parts.)
As Greg Barman stated in his earlier post:

This is New Year's Eve, Beaker Street style, starting 11pm Friday, December 31, 1971, and going into the wee hours of January 1, 1972.  I got this aircheck from another collector several years ago.  From the lack of fading it sounds like it was taped off KAAY's local signal, but I don't know who originally taped it.  It is mostly untelescoped, with just a few gaps here and there and parts of some songs left out due to distortions in audio quality.  But overall the quality is quite good.  The aircheck is divided into four audio files and they cover most of the 3 hour show. 

It sure sounds like Clyde Clifford is celebrating the New Year at the transmitter site, and I mean something beyond the countdown to midnight and Auld Lang Syne.  Long songs are the norm with Beaker Street's progressive rock format, of course.  But this night Clyde is playing some VERY long songs, like Iron Butterfly's "In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida", "The Court of the Crimson King" by King Crimson, and a long unidentified Dixieland-style jam after midnight.  Was there a party going on?  Listen carefully and you can hear the clues.  In Part 4, Clyde says he is drinking "a little eggnog", with no nog in it, sorry, but with some "awful strong nutmeg".  OK.....

You will also hear some Black Oak Arkansas, Jethro Tull, Alice Cooper, Grateful Dead, Love Sculpture, Guess Who, and Deep Water Reunion's "Cindy's Cryin' ", a Beaker Street classic. The spots include A Warehouse in New Orleans.  The Allman Brothers and REO Speedwagon were playing there that weekend and tickets were only 5 bucks --- wow!  Other advertisers are Floyd's Record Shop, Jefferson Manor Apartments, Coca-Cola and Stag Beer. 

Clyde mentioned listeners in Wisconsin, Missouri and Louisiana, and we all know there were plenty more.  Imagine thousands of people celebrating New Year's in their own way, with Beaker Street blasting thru the skywaves and rocking out of radios all over the place to bring in 1972!

Thanks, Greg, for supplying these great memories!


  1. Did anyone notice that, after "Innagaddadavida", Clyde said, "...first day of 1971."? Musta been the eggnog (which had no nog, but plenty of nutmeg, according to Clyde!)! Bud S.

    Black Juju - Alice Cooper
    Aqualung - Jethro Tull
    Uncle Lijah - Black Oak Arkansas
    Mars/Sabre Dance - Love Sculpture
    Truckin' - Grateful Dead
    Bang A Gong - T. Rex
    Pussy Wiggle Stomp - Don Ellis
    Careful With That Axe Eugene - Pink Floyd
    Friends Of Mine - The Guess Who
    In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida - Iron Butterfly
    Cindy's Cryin' - Deep Water Reunion
    In The Court Of The Crimson King - King Crimson
    Lord Have Mercy on My Soul/When Electricity Came to Arkansas - Black Oak Arkansas
    Gypsy Woman's Passion - REO Speedwagon
    Uncle John's Band - Grateful Dead
    The Great Grizzly Bear Hunt - The Incredible Broadside Brass Bed Band

  3. I used to listen to Beaker Street from about 10 years old to when I moved and could no longer get the signal. This was in SW Wisconsin. I found this and other sites that brought back a lot of memories. I felt so strongly about the influence of Clyde Clifford that I sent a letter to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame advocating for his induction. If anyone else feels the same way please send a letter to the HOF. Maybe we can start a movement to get Clyde Clifford into the HOF.

    1. Agreed!Clyde's influence, including mine during my high school years 1968=1972, was wide spread across the nation! He is an institution that I am grateful to have experienced!