Thursday, May 28, 2015

Eric Thomas Shares His Story!

Eric Lensing, a.k.a. "Eric Thomas" and I have been corresponding.  He sends more goodies for us to share here, along with his story.  Eric mentioned, "My first true love was radio and I kept quite a bit of stuff when I was in the position to acquire it."  I, for one, am certainly glad he saved stuff from the round file!

Eric also mentioned to me that he took his dad's name, Thomas, as his air name, hence, Eric Thomas; what a way to honor your dad with a successful career!

Enough said, I want to share Eric's story with you, dear visitor, with some memorabilia sprinkled about:

"Everybody has interesting stories - as far as my story – I contacted Dick Downes, who was PD at KAAY, during early 1977 and offered to do anything pro-bono at the station. He was very kind and hired me to do some local callout research on weekends. Yep, I went to the station, got out a phone book, hooked up a cart deck, and commenced to call people at random playing 10 second snippets of songs and asked the caller to rate them from 1 to 10. Amazingly enough, I was rarely hung up on back then, haha! Dick also allowed me to sit in during DJ Joe James weekend shift and just observe. Wow, what a pro! He had come to KAAY from a powerhouse station in Cleveland, OH. I can’t recall which one. But Joe James was such a great jock.
 
 
Soon afterward, in the same building, easy listening KEZQ changed formats to KQ94 and Stuart McRae became its program director. He was very kind to me and kind of took me under his wing. He allowed me to be on the first “KQ94 Rock Advisory Board” and later go on-the-air for the first time in LR between 1am-4am every now and then to get the feel for it. I laugh at it now. Man, I was so shell shocked and tentative. But it was SO MUCH FUN. A great big thanks to Stuart, Bob Majers (KQ music director) and Dave Freeman (KQ 7-12 jock) for their patience and help and patience. Great times. Yea, I was still in high school and my parents let me pull the all-nighters as long as I went to school the next day. I was never asked to don the KQ94 Kangaroo costume for local remotes and outings, but I knew someone who did. Let me just say it was a hot job.
And that is how I got my start at KAAY and KQ94. So, I was actually on FM before AM. A few months before my high school graduation I got my first “real job” doing all-nights at local competitor KKYK (working for a wonderful PD, Jim Cassidy, whom I really loved for having faith in me). Over a year later I came back to KAAY and then bounced from KAAY to KQ94 – from control room to control room. Steve Kelly was PD of both stations at that time and was one heck of a go-getter. He was a hands-on boss who came to Multimedia after being a record rep in the Texas area. He knew the biz and treated me well! And I loved every single minute on KAAY. It was my dream station as a kid and I had so much respect for the station and all who were once on it.
 
In fact, I it was during a Memorial Day holiday weekend when I was doing a 7-12 shift on KAAY when I got a buzz from the front door of the station. A guy came on the intercom saying he once worked on KAAY and was driving through and wanted to show his wife or girlfriend the station.  I let him upstairs and we talked a bit and he was so happy to see it all again. I asked him what his on-air name was and he said  Steve Scott! The guy I admired and listened to all of those evenings when I was growing up – was right there. That was a magical moment! Dreams do come true."
 

I mentioned to Eric about being one of "The Greats"- and he humbly said that he was in the presence of the greats, such as "Clyde Clifford, Joe James, Steve Scott, Stuart McRae, Wayne Moss, Marvelous Mark and all the others."  I am still of the opinion that if one had the opportunity to work, er, PLAY at the 50,000-watt blowtorch KAAY, they were indeed in great company....

Thank you, Eric, for sharing your story!  We hope to hear of many other dreams that came true in your career at KAAY!

Bud S. (staceys4@hotmail.com)

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Old KTHS Shows?


Found in my e-mail box today (5/26/15):

"I used to listen to KTHS around 10 p.m. when the clear channels kicked in.  I lived in west central Minnesota in the mid-50’s.  There was a record salesman who called himself “Gatemouth (with the laughin’ face).”  He would say “The 78’s are the big record with the little hole and the 45’s are the little record with the big hole.”  This was our first exposure to rock n’ roll and we loved it.  The frequency was near to KMOX in St. Louis so I’d catch a Cardinals game while I waited for Gatemouth.  I have fond memories of those days and always wondered what his name was, hearing about Howlin’ Wolf, John Lee Hooker, and other greats.  Wonderful record specials!  I’d appreciate any links to information about those old shows.  Thanks!
Sincerely,
John Teisberg
 jeteis36@msn.com"
 
Folks, we here at the Mighty 1090 KAAY Blog would also like any links & info regarding the predecessor to KAAY!  Can anyone help John, please?
 
 
 
 

Monday, May 25, 2015

REMEMBER....

In both my jobs, I come across many people- some memorable characters stand out, however.  Like the one old 89-year-old Marine who comes into the store on my second job.  I never knew his name (and I'm ashamed that I never asked), but he was always grateful for my help.  Somehow, he was able to drive, but his eyesight was so poor, that he couldn't tell the denomination of the cash he handed me to take (or if it was enough) or needed help to run his debit card...he couldn't read the PIN pad.  He always apologized for my having to help him.  I told him he had no need to apologize, that it was my privilege to serve him for what he's done for me.

For a while, he was in every week, buying dog food, sometimes a little food for himself.  He always seemed to recognize my voice and I recognized his slow, painful walk across the parking lot.  I took the time to hold the door for him and shake his hand and he was always a gracious gentleman.  Even at 89 years, his grip was a bone-crusher, and I reveled in his strength....

When he completed his transaction, he would say, "GOD bless you, sir!" and I would reply, "GOD bless YOU, as well!"  I would tell the people behind him that they were walking in the steps of a real man, a Marine.  Many would immediately thank him and sometimes he got hugs and handshakes from those in line.  He would walk out of the store a little straighter then....

He lied about his age and joined the Marines at age 16;  He was in well over 30 years and was in pretty rough shape from the conflicts he'd weathered.  I haven't seen him in about a year now; I wonder where he is.  But every time I saw him, I made sure I thanked him for his service.

For those of you who served, THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE!  For those who didn't, please be sure to thank a veteran- EVERY DAY, not just today.

Bud S. (staceys4@hotmail.com)

Thursday, May 21, 2015

The 30th Anniversary Reunion, Part 2

As promised, we're continuing on with other pictures from the KAAY 30th reunion, compliments of Doug Virden.  All of these are of pictures from a board outside the room of various other pictures plastered on a display board.  You'll see Sonny Martin accepting an award, an earlier picture of himself in the studio, a collage of photos, the blue Funmobile in one picture, Ray & Ram billboard from later FM days and a couple others...By the way, who are they guys in the bathtub?



Remember when we posted a couple of these awhile back of Sonny (Matt White)?





Love those old radios!  You know, REAL radios glow in the dark!



R.I.P. Ray Lincoln....


Can anyone name these KAAY KQ94 personalities, please?


And WHO are these guys in the collage above, hmmm?  Maybe Sonny & Bob???

OK, one last installment to go!

Bud S. (staceys4@hotmail.com)

Monday, May 18, 2015

Radio Yesterday from Barry Mac! Feb 20, 2005


We are happy to present several of Barry McCorkindale's "Radio Yesterday" shows that aired on KAAY from early 2003 to late 2006.   Each weekend, KAAY would break away from its regular Christian programming to allow the old rock'n'roll KAAY to come back, however briefly.  Barry would feature songs from the 60's to early 80's era of KAAY interspersed with bits of old spots, jingles, and airchecks. Some of the commercials were on tapes that were rescued from storage at the transmitter site.

Barry explained the history of these shows in an earlier Blog post: 

http://mighty1090kaay.blogspot.com/2010/07/barry-mac-kaay-rewound-and-radio.html

We would like to thank Doug Virden for his help in dubbing the shows off the reel tapes and getting them to us here at the Blog!

On this show from February 20, 2005, Barry's playlist includes a favorite telephone number from the 60's, a favorite movie theme, and the only top 40 song to feature a tuba solo:




Thank you Barry!   We have more shows coming up in the next few months. 


Greg Barman


Thursday, May 14, 2015

Eric Thomas Checks In!!!

Eric Lensing, known as "Eric Thomas" checked in recently!  He sent in a concert ad for us to enjoy...here are the pictures he sent, then a little note from him at the end....

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

"To Bud S. – I found your site and scrolled around feeling a bit nostalgic and gratified someone is doing this. My on-air name on KAAY and several other LR stations from 1979-1986 was Eric Thomas, and I had a blast working on the Blowtorch of the South. No – it was more than that. It was an honor! I grew up in LR listening to KAAY and I have to say it was my most satisfying on-air experience (even though the glory years were in the rear view mirror at that point.)
Anyway, I have some old flyers, memos and program director notes from my time on Cottondale Lane if you think they would be worth scanning and sending. Let me know.
Oh yea, I saw on your site that several years ago there was a KAAY reunion with some old jocks. Sorry I missed that. I worked with Stuart and Jay back in the Multimedia days, and Tom at Magic 105.
Keep up the good work.
Eric"

I am very grateful to Eric for contacting us!  For those of you who may not know Eric, or would like a refresher, here is a link for his audio and other material:

http://mighty1090kaay.blogspot.com/search?q=Eric+Thomas

Thank you, Eric!  We are looking forward to hearing from you again soon!

Bud S. (staceys4@hotmail.com)

Monday, May 11, 2015

The 30th Anniversary Reunion, Part 1

Folks, Barry Mac (Barry McCorkindale) has brought us an account of that evening, when numerous KAAY Greats (himself included!) gathered, with about 35 other folks in attendance.  I wish I could have been there....  Herewith, Barry Mac's account:

"
It was the 30th anniversary of "the day the music died," the last broadcasting day of the "old" KAAY, April 3rd, 1985.  We gathered at The Oyster Bar party room, just as we did two and a half years ago for the station's 50th anniversary birthday party.  A lot of the same suspects were in attendance this time around, including Arkansas broadcasting legends Bob Robbins, Sonny Martin, Clyde Clifford, and Charlie Scarbrough.  Also, long time political columnist/sports announcer/jack-of-all-trades Rex Nelson descended upon us, as he, Bob and Sonny, and Clyde all shared stories with us.  In between the stories shared by our speakers, I ran some old audio bits, including a number of news items and commercials, including a great 1974 "blooper" reel featuring Bob Robbins and Bill Edwards, as they tried about a dozen times to get through a script for voter registration.  But the highlight of the evening was long time station engineer Felix McDonald coming through the party room double doors.  One of his daughters had told me earlier in the week that they were going to try to get Felix to come out, but being that his health hasn't been very good the last few years, and the fact that he's 89 years old, I wasn't holding out too much hope.  But lo and behold, at approximately 7:45 in the evening, Felix, his wife, Oleta, and two of their daughters made their entrance.  And after they had a seat at one of the tables, it was about five minutes later, while Clyde Clifford was sharing some of his stories, that Felix stood up and kind of surveyed the crowd.  After about a minute, he and his cane started making their way around the room, occasionally leaning in to share words with the various people who caught his eye.  And it was about five minutes later that Bob Robbins up and grabbed the microphone to give Felix a rousing introduction, which brought the crowd of about 35 to their feet with an energetic round of applause.

The "Two Macs"!!! 

On display just inside the entrance to the party room were a number of items from many years ago, including an enlarged KAAY top 25 chart from August of 1976 (Walter Murphy's "A Fifth of Beethoven" inhabited the #1 spot, by the way), as well as a picture of the late Governor Winthrop Rockefeller holding up a KAAY Arkansas Razorback-Texas Longhorn game day poster.


Much thanks to Virginia Boyd for accommodating us at the restaurant that she's owned for so many years.  It's really a perfect atmosphere for a gathering like ours.

I have to say that the only thing missing from this party was the presence of David B. Treadway, who, of course, was the program director those last few months before ownership transferred from Multimedia to Sudbrink Broadcasting.  And let me add, there will no consideration of any more KAAY gatherings unless David B. confirms he WILL be in attendance.  We had a great time without him, but we would've had a better time with him."
Thank you, Barry Mac!  The following are various pictures, thanks to Doug Virden, from the reunion.  Oh, here are a trio of clowns, showing off their "retro" flip phones, Gordon Stephan, Barry Mac and Charlie Scarbrough!
There were also various pictures of Doug with Clyde Clifford, Sonny Martin, Bob Robbins and sundry other items:




Folks, there are SO many pictures, this post will have to continue into several more parts!  Pleas stay tuned!

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Marvin Vines' Business Card!

Tony Meyer found this in a briefcase Marvin Vines gave him... he and Doug Virden posted it on Facebook:
 
Thanks guys for sharing this!

Bud S. (staceys4@hotmail.com)

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Dan Goode (Tom Gallagher") Gone Into Eternity....

Folks, it was brought to my attention this morning (5/7/15) that Dan Goode, otherwise known as "Tom Gallagher" on KAAY, has passed away:

Dan Goode 

Dan Goode, 63, of Conway passed away Tuesday, May 5, 2015.

He was born March 9, 1952, to the late Marple J. Goode and Leva A. Goode.

He was a radio broadcaster under the name Tom Gallagher.

After retiring from radio, Dan began his second career as a truck driver.
He is survived by his wife of 31 years, Sheila Swan Goode; son, Brent Goode of Conway; two daughters, Courtney Goode Grady (David) and Ashley Goode, both of Conway; grandchildren, Chloe Goode, Drake Grady and Laney Ford; brothers-in-law, Greg Swan (Carol) of Texarkana, Ark. and Damon Swan (Loretta) of Tyler, Texas; and many other loving family members and friends.

Memorial service will be 10 a.m. Friday, May 8, 2015 at Roller-McNutt Funeral Home in Conway, with Reverend Damon Swan officiating.

I had e-mailed Dan several times over the years, after his initial contact with us with no response.  I figured that, as with some, that he didn't want to "look back" any more.  Maybe someone can give some fond memories as to his time at KAAY.

Rest in peace, Dan....

Bud S. (staceys4@hotmail.com)
 

Monday, May 4, 2015

The FINAL Beaker Street on KAAY - April 3, 1985


The Day The Music Died.  That phrase has been used to describe what happened to so many AM Rock stations that wound up dumping their cherished music formats during the 1980’s.  It was happening all over the country, even to big legendary stations like WABC/New York, WLS/Chicago, CKLW/Windsor-Detroit, KIMN/Denver -- stations that nobody thought would ever give up the music that made them great.  Sadly, it became KAAY’s turn to throw in the towel on April 3, 1985, when it capped several days of reminiscences about its legendary history with a final Beaker Street show, AND with Clyde Clifford, at the final hour before Midnight.

We are fortunate that this Blog has great accounts of that Final day from people who were there.  The first one is from Barry McCorkindale:


And, from the final PD, David Treadway:


The last KAAY Beaker Street show featured many of the songs it helped to make famous back in the day:

Arthur Brown – Fire
Deep Water Reunion (with Barbara Raney) – Cindy’s Cryin
Allman Brothers Band – Revival
Quicksilver Messenger Service – Fresh Air
Leon Russell – Delta Lady
Jamie Brockett – Legend of the U.S.S. Titanic
Jefferson Airplane – Wooden Ships
Black Sabbath – The Wizard
Joni Mitchell – The Circle Game

Here is the aircheck of the final hour of that final day on KAAY.  Clyde Clifford gave tribute to his co-workers, his listeners, the music, and the grand old RCA 50,000-watt transmitter…..and “put the old girl down”:


This brings to a close our Beaker Street aircheck series, for now (until some “new” old tapes of the show re-surface, I got a feeling they’re still out there, somewhere).  We hope you have enjoyed this series as much as we have in putting it together. 

Next time:  The Reunion

Greg Barman

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Barry Mac's Tin Can Alley To Air Twice A Weekend On KAAY!

Yes, thanks to Doug Virden, Tin Can Alley has expanded its hours to include a 2PM Sunday slot on KAAY!  Be sure to let Barry Mac know you're listening!  As always, you can listen to it here every week, as our very own computer guru and blog co-founder Dave Schmidt posts Tin Can Alley right here on The Mighty 1090 KAAY Blog!

Bud S. (staceys4@hotmail.com)