Tuesday, May 23, 2023

There were a ton of famous DJs who manned the mic at WKGN 1340 in the early 70s under the leadership of PD Bob Baron...Wayne Bernard, Sonny Knight, Allen Dennis, Frank Erwin, Jerry Steele, Gary Drake, Dick Winstead, Jack Diamond, Smokey Burns, Your Dave Young, Kent Newton and Possum Riley to name a few!

We dust off the 101 Audio Vault and enjoy Bob...


Saturday, April 15, 2023

Pack Your Suitcase...

Back in 1978 I was working weekends at WIVK as was Suitcase Simpson. Suitcase aka Bill Miller went on to DJ and Program Director at WKGN and WMYU.

During his on air career Bill used some groovy DJ names...Bill Miller, Suitcase Simpson, Stan Cassidy, Lincoln Smith, Bad Willie Soul, and perhaps even more!

Here are some of Bill's stops along the way. BTW- I gathered this info from him back in '78! It all started at WCPH Etowah followed by WMTM in Morristown.

Bill did 4 years at the legendary WFLI in Chattanooga as PD and afternoons. During his Chatta time he also worked at WGOW. 

Skipping ahead Bill went to WIFE in Indianapolis for one year, and had the #1 rated night show there. His on air name was Lincoln Smith.

Bill next headed back to WFLI followed by WGIV Charlotte and then WKY Oklahoma City working nights for 2 years as Bill Miller.

Returning to East TN for school Suitcase worked at WOKI afternoons, nights at WIVK, a stint at 15Q (with everyone else) and then back to WIVK. (note- a few stops along the way are not listed).

What a trip up and down the radio dials, thank goodness he had his Suitcase!

Tuesday, April 11, 2023

line up, get your line up!

I always enjoyed keeping up with radio line ups, and loved these pamphlets...this is from 60 years ago at WIVK AM 860!

Dick Broadcasting is no longer (WIVK owner), but the off shoots still exist in Knoxville as WIVK, WOKI, and WNML.

Today was a monumental day as Sports Talk moved from afternoons to morning drive on WNML, The Sports Animal.

With Jimmy Hyams retirement, Vince Ferrara is teaming up with John Wilkerson for the 6-9a time slot. 

The Erik Ainge Show with Brian Rice, and Josh and Swain remain in their time slots. Afternoons are now anchored by Will West and Tyler Ivens, formerly the morning drive.

In today's radio...seldom are there live and local shows of any format from 6a to 7p daily, kudos to The Sports Animal, they also beam in here (Central Florida) loud and clear. Go Vols!

Friday, March 31, 2023

Happy Trails to Knoxville radio sports legend Jimmy Hyams as he hangs up his full time microphone today. Jimmy and John Wilkerson have co hosted "Sports Talk" for 25 years, currently via The Sports Animal WNML. (photo via WNML).

Tuesday, March 21, 2023

Tennessee Radio Hall of Fame

Congratulations to Allen Johnson aka Dr. Al Adams, he will be inducted into the TN Radio HOF this summer. 

Back in March 1975 Dr. Al returned to WKGN 1340 as morning DJ and Program Director. He had previously worked the night shift there in the 60's before adventuring to St. Louis, Cincinnati, Buffalo, and more! 

On Monday March 3, 1975 Dr. Al debuted at 6a (I air checked it, check the search engine box at the right of this blog). His morning co host along with Witch Hazel was News Director Joe Anderson. 

The station was now tagged as "WKGN Takes You To The Country"...the DJ line up featured Dr. Al 6-10, Frank Erwin 10-3, Mike Beach 3-7, Rick Davis 7-12, and Bob Thomas 12-6. Weekend DJs were David Todd and Russ Brown. Jean Ash joined Joe on the news desk as she anchored afternoons. 

At that time WKGN also added the phrase "WKGN where all the good old songs have gone". 

Thanks for this air check to Google and WKCS (Fulton High) TV and radio teacher Russell Mayes (for nearly three decades) he succeeded Dr. Al at Fulton...the 101 Audio Vault travels back to 1965 and the good doctor!


Wednesday, March 08, 2023

It's January 1980...yes, welcome to the 80s! I kicked off the new year by working 3-7p on WIVK (Tuesday 1/1/80). I was also a senior at UT. Where were you?

WRJZ 620 was in its 3rd year...JJ Scott, Rick Kirk, and Bob Kaghan were no longer heard on the air. But what a line up they had...6-10 CP and Walker, 10-2 Adele, 2-6 Mark McCain, 6-10 John Boy, 10-2 Fred Story, and 2-6 Jeff Jarnigan. Ernie Baker and David Henley anchored the news desk.

We dust off The 101 Audio Vault...


Tuesday, February 21, 2023

50 years ago...

 ...let's travel back to 1973! On March 30 I began my work career as a busboy at the Frank Kotsianas owned Ivanhoe House of Beef. Mr. Frank had previously owned/operated The Brass Rail on Gay Street and later founded Kotsi's (later the first Chop House in Knoxville). Enough about mE, ha!

As we travel thru the year, Bob Baron was named a finalist for the Jaycee's Man of the Year in early January. 

The prominent AM stations that year were WETE 620, WIVK 850, WNOX 990, WBIR 1240, WKGN 1340, and W-149 (WROL 1490).

Morning DJs were Eddy Roy at WNOX, Bob Baron at WKGN, and Hop Edwards at WETE, who exited in late January. 

WKGN was sounding better than ever, and at 1000 watts was overachieving...Frank Erwin and Wayne Bernard were staples and big additions that year were Jack Diamond, Smokey Burns, and late in '73 Your Dave Young exited from WNOX to The Famous 1340. 

On the Vols football side, Larry Robinson was offered a football scholarship in late February. Soon thereafter the Basket Vols signed Mike Jackson, David Moss, and Mike Smithson. 

That baseball year the Braves were on WSEV-FM and the Reds games were heard on WETE.

In August, Big Jim Hess, an original WIVK DJ from 1953, left WTVK Channel 26 to become VP at Environment Consultants.

In the fall Mike Beach was on the air at W-149 as morning DJ, Bob Hamilton, Gary Adkins, and Bill Johnson were also their jocks.

On September 20 singer/songwriter Jim Croce passed away, wow...50 years ago, but his music lives on!

In October, a young me ran into Ken Burger of WKGN...he told me Jack Diamond was going to leave for Louisville, but Bob Baron offered him a $100 raise, the Louisville folks countered so at 11:40p Jack and Guerilla left a note for Jerry Steele, put on the long song Alice's Restaurant, and exited stage left!

And that's a brief look back from 50 years ago, where were you in '73?

Tuesday, February 14, 2023


First hired as a student assistant in 1946 by General Neyland, Gus Manning went on to a have a storied and beloved 50 years career as a key member of the University of Tennessee Athletic Department. Gus passed away on Super Bowl Sunday at the age of 99.

Most have a Gus story or two...mE~ I got to know Gus back in the late 70s as he would come up to our WIVK studios on Sunday nights to record his daily sports show that aired weekdays on the station. We had some fun and meaningful conversations.

Go rest high on that football field! Go Vols! RIP!

Sunday, January 29, 2023

In early 1982 I was lucky enough to be hired at WRJZ 620 to be a weekend DJ at "My Kind of Country". The PD was the incredible Steve Bridgewater aka Dr. Don West on his morning drive show and formerly Steve West on 15Q, circa 1976. 
Being not only a radio person but a radio fan, I was in awe sitting in the same control room that had housed Bob Kaghan, JJ Scott, CP and Walker, Fred Story, etc.
In early 1980 the still rockin' WRJZ featured CP and Walker 6-10, Adele 10-2, Mark McCain 2-6, John Boy 6-10, Fred Story 10-2, and Jeff Jarnigan 2-6. The news crew included Ernie Baker and David Henley. Carrington Thompson was the fill in and weekender. 
The 101 Audio Vault features John Boy (before Billy)...