Thursday, September 24, 2015

A Sales Pitch About WLTD's Weird Program Schedule

<First, thanks to everyone who chimed in regarding last week's (edited) post. I appreciated the conversation. I do understand the points of those of you arguing for keeping things historically accurate, and will make future decisions on a case-by-case basis. That said, I am also struggling with some professional reasons why it might not be the best idea for me to share such recordings unedited.>

And now....

WLTD was a station located in central Evanston, IL, during the 1970's. The station existed before that point under other call letters, and still exists, but again, has had different call letters for many, many years now. It's biggest claim to fame, after the fact, is that it was the original station to host the now-legendary show "Those Were the Days", featuring Chuck Schaden and hour after hour of Old Time Radio. This is one the programs which kicked off the nostalgia craze for OTR.

I believe that when it was WLTD, it was one of those stations which sells off time for programming to anyone who wanted to air a show which fit in with the stations larger goals, but I could be wrong.

If I'm right, however, that would go a long way to explaining the near-schizophrenic programming described in this promo reel for advertisers - they go from light classic music right into discussions of abortion and suicide! They clearly want the buyers to know that they have an older, upscale listening audience, but aside from certain elements of the programming that clearly would appeal to parts of that older audience, I'm not sure who would be sticking around for all of the haphazard changes of format which seem to have gone on every day.

And all this is in addition to the idea that, by the early '70's, anyone would have been looking for a "Fine Arts" station, with a frequent focus on Classical Music, on an AM station. That seems unlikely. Oh, and that unctuous salesman announcing the sales pitch is about as big a turn off as I can imagine. Ecch. I do, however, love the descriptions he gives of the opulent lifestyles of the listeners your products will reach - it's well over the line into self-parody. And the way he sells the idea that most news of the day is aggressively unimportant. Classic. Oh, and who is this fabulous composer Bokohrock that he mentions?

Download: WLTD Promo Reel


  1. Bob, do you have any info regarding the approximate year for this compilation, or were these recordings spread out over several years and you knocked them together?
    Thanks for this compilation. I can't wait to give it a listen!

  2. Hi, Muff,

    This is exactly as heard on the tape - it's all one presentation. My guess is 1971 or 1972. Chuck Schaden was only with the statement a little over three years, from mid 1970 until early '74.

    Thanks for all your comments - glad you're enjoying the site!