It was a year of protests and violence in every corner of the world, and of political battles and campus unrest — a year marred by the murders of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and Robert Kennedy, and the year that Richard M. Nixon was elected to serve as our 37th president.
The year was 1968, and nearly 550,000 American soldiers were serving in Vietnam.
John Mack Flanagan, with a 45 on his hip and a portable tape recorder in his hand
Not all of that half-million-strong force was there “in country” for armed combat, however. A small group performed a different military duty: providing entertainment on radio and television for their brothers and sisters in uniform.
Among those that served in Vietnam were three men with strong Bay Area media connections — John Mack Flanagan (BARHOF 2017), Dan Ethen (BARHOF 2017), and Michael Bennett.
At the next Broadcast Legends quarterly luncheon, these three will be on hand to tell their stories.
The event, entitled “Something Happening Here: Vietnam On The Air,” takes place on Thursday, March 15, at the Basque Cultural Center in South San Francisco, beginning at 11:30 AM.
Yes, friends and neighbors, it’s time once again to raise a glass of cheer to our friends and colleagues at the annual Broadcast Legends holiday luncheon!
This year’s Holiday Bash at the Basque takes place on Friday, December 15, from 11 AM to 2 PM at the elegant Basque Cultural Center in South San Francisco.
While we haven’t assembled our full cast of characters for the event, you can be assured that the entertainment will be top-flight, and will feature a galaxy of stars from across the local radio and television firmament.
MARK YOUR SCHEDULE:
Saturday, September 23
Basque Cultural Center
South San Francisco
11 AM – 2 PM
The Broadcast Legends will celebrate the Bay Area Radio Hall of Fame‘s incoming Class of 2017 with a special luncheon on Saturday, September 23, at the Basque Cultural Center in South San Francisco.
The BARHOF Class of 2017 includes Peter Cleaveland (News), Dan Ethen (Engineer), Ron Fell (Management), John Mack Flanagan (Program Host), Richard Gossett (Program Host), Lee Jones (Specialty), Michael Krasny (Talk Show Host), Dan Sorkin (Program Host), Doug Sovern (News), Tony Tremayne (Pioneer; née Mel Fritze) and Rich Walcoff (Sports).
In addition, Chris Jackson of 98.5 KFOX will be honored as the recipient of the first Don Sherwood Award as the most popular radio personality in the Bay Area, as selected by the public. John Mack Flanagan, longtime personality on KFRC, KRQR, KSFO/KYA-FM and KWSS, goes into BARHOF as the people’s choice for the Sherwood Award in the Legends category.
Our host for the festivities will be Rosie Lee Allen, formerly of KGO Radio and herself a 2008 inductee into BARHOF.
The doors to BARHOF 2017 open at 11 AM for a no-host mix and mingle, followed by lunch and the ceremony at noon.
Ackerman’s radio career began in Sacramento, where he “got the radio bug” while attending Grant Union High School. In 1942, he landed a job at KQW. At the time, the station was still licensed to San Jose, requiring some programming to originate there. Ackerman spent time in the San Jose studios as well as KQW’s San Francisco studios.
He told the San Francisco Chronicle’s Carl Nolte in 2009 that he remembers doing live broadcasts of big bands — Muggsy Spanier at the Bush Garden, a jazz band at the Mocambo, Del Courtney, Desi Arnaz, Ray Noble or Bob Crosby and his Bobcats, “live and direct for your listening pleasure from the Rose Room at San Francisco’s famous Palace Hotel.” Some of those live broadcasts would be distributed nationwide.
The Beach Boys perform at a 1964 concert promoted by San Jose’s KLIV
San Jose’s venerable KLIV (1590 AM) has been honored with the 2017 Legendary Station Award by the Bay Area Radio Museum and Hall of Fame, in recognition of its seven decades of service to listeners in the South Bay Area, and will be celebrated at a special Broadcast Legends luncheon on Tuesday, June 20, at the Basque Cultural Center in South San Francisco.
Founded in late 1946 as KSJO, the station began its life as a thousand-watt, daytime-only outlet located in an orchard at the corner of Story Road and Lucretia Avenue in still-rural San Jose, then watched as the city grew up around it over the years.
In 1960, the station’s owners – seeing no real future in FM radio – sold off KSJO’s FM sister and changed the AM station’s call letters to KLIV, while continuing to broadcast from its home on Story Road.
During the 1960s, KLIV established itself as one of the most popular stations in the region, playing popular Top 40 music aimed at the growing number of baby boomers whose parents began settling in the area, catering to the surfer boys and girls who headed over the hill to Santa Cruz every summer weekend, and helping inspire dozens of garage bands across the South Bay.
KLIV’s Bob Kieve
Fifty years ago, in July 1967, Robert S. Kieve and a partner purchased KLIV for $974,000; to this day, Mr. Kieve continues to operate KLIV under the Empire Broadcasting banner as one of the dwindling few independent major-market radio station owners in the United States. He was inducted into the Bay Area Radio Hall of Fame (BARHOF) in 2007, and recently celebrated his 95th birthday with the station’s alumni and current staff.
Among the popular voices that have graced KLIV’s airwaves over the years are John McLeod (BARHOF 2010), Mikel Hunter Herrington (2008), Dave Sholin (2008), Bob Ray, Ross McGowan, George Sampson, John Lester, John Bettencourt, Larry Mitchell, Jack Hayes, Peter Boam and Mac McGregor.
KLIV joins previous Legendary Station honorees KCBS, KGO, KSFO, KNBR, KFRC, KSAN, KPEN and KYA.
The Bay Area Radio Museum and Hall of Fame, founded in 2005, is a program of the California Historical Radio Society (CHRS), and is dedicated to preserving and honoring the history of radio broadcasting in the San Francisco Bay Area.
You’re invited to take a trip back in time to when radio was boss as the Broadcast Legends celebrate “The Boss of the Bay” — 1260 KYA — which is being honored on Thursday, June 23, with the Legendary Station Award for 2016.
The KYA reunion and celebration will be held at the Basque Cultural Center in South San Francisco, from 11:30 AM to 2 PM.
The Emperor himself: Gene Nelson at 1260 KYA (1965)
KYA becomes the latest station to be honored with designation as a Legendary Station by the Bay Area Radio Hall of Fame (BARHOF), a program of the California Historical Radio Society. KYA joins the first-ever station to have received the award, KCBS, along with KGO, KNBR, KSFO, KFRC, KSAN and KPEN.
Even though KYA has been gone from the Bay Area’s airwaves since 1983, it can rightfully claim its heritage as the Bay Area’s longest-running Top 40 station, having begun its 25-year tenure in 1958. (By contrast, KYA’s chief competitor, the original Big 610, KFRC, had a twenty year run, from 1966 through 1986.)