Monday, January 16, 2017

I've remembered that I have a Bob Kaghan story! I never worked for the late "Boy Wonder" first PD of WRJZ. I was hired by Fred Story for overnights after Bob (and John-Boy) left for Charlotte...but I knew him. He was only a couple of years older than I, and died far too soon. And his talent is legendary. It was Fall 1980. I was in my last year of Electrical Engineering school at UTK (6-year plan, as I had to pay my own way). I drove a green 1974 Plymouth Gold Duster with black vinyl roof and 3-on-the-floor. The car is key to the story. I had come in to WRJZ to run board for Vol-Network coverage of GA at UT. Best I recall, pregame came on at 11:30 am for a 1-pm kickoff. I do remember that I relieved Adele at the board when I came on. About 15 minutes into pregame, I heard a sound behind me. We were on the 4th floor at 1515 Magnolia, and the door to the control room was in front of me to the left. Nothing but a wall of carted oldies and 2 windows lay behind me. I heard it again. Something had hit the window! I looked out, and what do I see but Bob Kaghan, alone, standing on the lawn of the Knoxville Computer Center building. I asked him WTH? He had ridden "the Greyhound" from Charlotte, and was tossing rocks up 4 stories to the CR window. He needed a lift to the game. I tossed down my keys and he came up. I asked if he could drive a stick. He could. I told him to take my car to the game (not like I needed it till 7 pm!), just don't get it towed. He laughed and said he wouldn't. About the time postgame ended, he showed back up, muttering "f*ckin' Dawgs eat sh*t" again and again. The Vols had lost pretty mightily that day. He stayed till 7 and bought my dinner at Ramsey's Cafeteria (some good eatin'!), then I drove him to the Greyhound bus terminal for his ride back to Charlotte and his job at WBCY. I never saw Kaghan again. But what a great guy he was. I'm glad I have that story to tell about him. I'd love to hear more Kaghan stories. Better yet, I'd love to read a biography about him. Is there one?

Steve Howard via our 101 Facebook page

Monday, January 09, 2017

In early 1980 Mike Beach became the morning DJ at Rock 104 (WBIR aka WIMZ)...also on board were Kim Mayo, Kerry Lambert (PD), and Carson Cooper.

The Ktown ratings at that time showed WIVK-FM on top with a 20.9 share (plus the AM was at 8.5). In 2nd place was WEZK with a 16.4, followed by WNOX 11.9, WRJZ 9.9, WIVK-AM, WOKI 7.7, and WBIR-FM (which had just recently launched) at 6.3.

101 heard from Mike Beach~

WIMZ was born in the old WBIR studios I was the morning man and one day after the shift, I stopped by to get my production load for the day and headed toward the production room. I noticed the light going on then off and had no idea who could be in there at that time of the morning. When the light went off, I opened the door to find the legend Lindsey Nelson sitting at the console. As most of you know, Lindsey was the voice of Notre Dame for many many years. He was at WBIR cutting some promos for that weekends game...on an old reel to reel tape recorder! What a shocker and what a great pleasure it was to meet and spend a half hour with one of Knoxville's TRUE legends. I will never forget that day and the kindness of one of the great play by play men of all time. Lindsey Nelson...

Sunday, January 08, 2017

WBIR am 1240 is probably best remembered for the decades long morning program "Date with Doc", hosted by Doc Johnston. Bob Thomas even worked there in the 70's!

The 101 Audio Vault is dusted off and travels back to '76 and DJ Randy Knowles~


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WBIR-FM 103.5 converted to the call letters WIMZ shortly after switching from a country to a hard rock format in '79. The long time morning DJ was Phil Williams...101 wishes Phil a very happy birthday today!

Tuesday, January 03, 2017

New Year, New Line Up!

Knoxville radio history is made daily...and today WNML rolls out a new on air line up with the addition of "The Erik Ainge Show" with Brian Rice, weekdays from 9a-noon. And the first guest was VFL Coach Phillip Fulmer!

Here's the new line up-

6 The First Quarter with Doc and Heather
9 The Erik Ainge Show
12 Sports 180 with Josh and Will
3 Sports Talk with John and Jimmy

Monday, January 02, 2017

We're kicking off 2017 and the 101 Audio Vault with the great Your Dave Young~


Sunday, January 01, 2017

Happy 2017!

Happy New Year or HNY as the world now abbreviates itself almost 101% these days!

Thanks to all our readers and contributors this past year...there remains a ton of empty space available for your photographs and memories about Knoxville (and the world) radio!

If you are on Facebook we have a Knoxville Radio History 101 page, it's similar to our blog but is more interactive, join the fun!

Yep, that's the WIVK control room back in the late 70's!

Saturday, December 31, 2016

Goodbye 2016!

If you have a diploma from the University of Tennessee's College of Communications then you likely crossed paths with Dr. Herb Howard at some point during your orange and white years.

Dr. Herb was one of my professors and since I was a DJ at WIVK during my UT years, we had some spirited radio conversations also.

101 has learned that Dr. Howard has been elected to the Tennessee Radio Hall of Fame.

Congrats and Happy New Year!

Friday, December 30, 2016

...the legend of the frog!

The invention of the frog as a radio mascot is a grand story, having been conjured up by Bobby Denton after hearing Your Dave croak "wivick" in the production studio at WIVK back in 1978.

The term "wivick" was voiced on WIVK years before that, just no thought about the frog conversion existed. This aircheck is from April 1976, you can hear Bob Catron saying "wivick".


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Moby in the Morning signed off for the final time this morning, ending a many decades run with his syndicated country morning show, yeah baby!

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

I started as sales manager at WIVK in March of 2004. I had moved from Birmingham, and was going through a divorce, so personally my life was a disaster at that time. 
Jeff was doing morning sports on WIVK (the Sports Animal, WNML hadn’t gone on the air yet).
So throwing myself into my work, I’m the first sales-type there every morning, trying to get a hold of the sales staff and understand the market. Jeff would come in my office every morning between his sports reports, and sit in one of the chairs in front of my desk and talk to me…and he always had a smirk grin on his face.
Years later, he and I were talking about his visits to my office when I first started at WIVK…and he verified my suspicions…he thought I was in over my head and he was there to pick my brain and was curious as to what kind of plans I had. He never expressed skepticism, but I could sense empathy because I was indeed in a very tough situation and he knew it.
On his visits, we talked about sports, politics and other things besides radio, but he was always kind to me and had a great sense of humor. 
His visits in my early days in Knoxville were always comforting to me while I was in a situation that was a pressure cooker. A few years later, I went with Jeff to an Ohio State game in Columbus and enjoyed it immensely. Jeff was one of the good guys…a guy that could make you smile and provide comfort to a friend.

Sunday, December 25, 2016


101 sadly reports that Jeff Jacoby, cohost of the Doc, Jeff, and Heather Show on WNML passed away this morning. May his memory be eternal!

Merry 101 Christmas!!!

In December of 1976 I graduated from UT and had been at WIVK as Sports Director and News Reporter for 3 and a half years. Mike Hammond who hired me had moved to Nashville where Jim Dick had bought WKDA-AM-FM in August of that year. Mr .Dick had ask me to stay with Dick Broadcasting after my graduation. He met with me in October and told me I could either stay at WIVK or move to Nashville. I decided to stay at WIVK. In late November I got a call from Mike saying that Mr. Dick was going to speak with me again about coming to Nashville to work there. I would be Sports Director and Sell also.  (Many WIVK folks sold at that time if you wanted to make $$$) Mike told me not to tell Jim Dick he said this but I needed to make sure I got my parking paid. 
The Phone bussed a few minutes later and it was Mr. Dick telling me to come see him if I had a minute. I took the long walk down the hall. He told me he’d gotten a call from Mike and Mike needed help at KDA and what was being changed to KDF at the end of the year. 
He said he’d agreed for me to stay at WIVK but Mike and he both would like for me to go to Nashville. He assured me that he would stick by his word and I could stay at WIVK if I still wanted to do so. However, he explained that most of my income would be from sales and that at WIVK most of the good accounts were taken. If I went to KDA/KDF all the sales people would be turned over in the next year or so and I would get able to have a shot at some good accounts as we built their business. This all makes sense to me now but then I had no clue what he was talking about! HA! However I told him Mike Hammond had given me my chance at WIVK and worked with me to get better and trained me. If he and Mr. Dick wanted me to go to Alaska I’d do it.  Nashville wasn’t quite that far!
I couldn’t let Mr. Dick know Mike had already called me and prepped me about the parking. So I just said, “Mr. Dick, aren’t the stations in an office building down there??? Where do you park?” I guess he was so surprised by the question he never realized I had inside info. He quickly responded we’ll pay for your parking.  I said….how about moving expenses. You pay for that! We’ll at least I’d proven I’d ask for the order!!!
After I’d been in Nashville about a year and a half New GM Bill Hays called me in one day and asked me, “Paul, are you getting parking paid?”  Yes I replied. “Who did that deal with you?” Bill asked.  “Jim Dick” I answered.  “Oh ok, Well don’t tell anyone. You me and Mike are the only ones getting Parking paid.”  Believe me….I never said a word!!! Until now!
I worked for Dick Broadcasting for 27 years. 20 years as General Sales Manager for the Nashville Stations and Titans Radio when we started it. I worked for Citadel for 4 years after they bought us. That four years was all I could take of corporate life. Steve Dickert and I were made General Manager and General Sales Manager on the same day. 20 years later and within two weeks of each other we both resigned. The company was bankrupt within two years. Not just us…lots of great people were fired, run off, or just left.
Paul Lyle

Friday, December 23, 2016

I exited WIVK stage left so many moons ago that I can barely picture or smell Booby's cigar smoke in the control room...and Channing Smith joined WIVK shortly after my exit, so you know he's been there a very long time. 35 years in fact!

Today he signed off the air for the last time (until next time).

Merry Christmas and Happy Trails to one of the Ktown legends and 101 Wall of Famer~ Channing Smith!

Friday, December 16, 2016

101 memories~

Here's a memory from '76. I was at WEZK doing overnights. It was my first on-air gig, and was a good gig for a college student. Occasionally various critters would find their way into the building, but nothing could have prepared me for this. I was in the production room preparing to cut a few spots, and I reached over to grab the headphones. I looked over at them right before I was about to pick them up and saw, curled on top of them, a baby snake. It was only about five or six inches long but that was enough! He didn't move, except to lift his head. I don't like to kill anything if I don't have to, so I got an empty tape box, got him in it, and put him outside. (Mike Clark)

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Erik Ainge joins WNML in '17 with his new show airing from 9a-noon weekdays!