Tuesday, July 17, 2018

WDAF-AM, Kansas City, Very Early 1970 (And an Added Bonus)

Today I have a prime slab of MOR-leaning Top 40 radio, from right near the beginning of 1970. The station is WDAF-AM in Kansas City (now known as KCSP).

This is, admittedly, not the most scintillating tape of music radio that you're ever going to hear. The person recording it focused on the music, so there is not a ton of between song chatter/phone calls/jingles/ads/news and weather, etc. But there are moments of that stuff, which is the gold of such a tape, and enough of it that I decided to share the material. I hope you agree that it was worth it.

In addition, the tape captures an era in radio that is utterly gone, and which has been since at least the mid-'80's, an era where pop, rock, jazz, funk (although I suppose the jazzy tune, and the ten seconds of Sly and the Family Stone could be from another channel), country, show tunes and novelty records all existed within the same bandwidth.

The date of this recording is fairly well nailed down by the presence of what is described as a brand new hit, the thoroughly awful and indefensible "Welfare Cadillac" by Guy Drake. The juxtaposition of this song, at one point, with "Blowing in the Wind" is particularly jarring.

Whoever made these recordings was quite taken with Guy Drake's spoken word record - I never understand the multiple recordings of a song, when I come across it, but in the course of recording just over an hour's worth of songs off of this station (and maybe a bit from others), he or she taped "Welfare Cadillac" four times within this hour of tape. Even leaving out the hideousness of this particular track, one would think that once one has taped something, one doesn't need another copy. Other songs, including a truly ridiculous novelty record about a chicken, are also taped multiple times.

Download: Various Artists - WDAF-AM, Kansas City, Very Early 1970

And here, for those with a voyeuristic bent, is a short phone call from a very excited young college woman, to her parents - specifically, her mom. She seemingly has no interest in telling her dad her big news.

Download: Unknown - Art Contest Phone Call


  1. This aricheq is ABSOLUTELY worthy of sharing with the world! The phone call is also great because it's nice audio quality, somehow this lady knew how to record in call via technological equipment. She probably knew her dad couldn't care less about this artsey schmartsey baloney.

  2. That chicken novelty tune is the 1967 record "The Cockfight" by Archie Campell of Hee Haw fame.

  3. This is great: more obscure tapes depicting 1960s slice of life, and our stalwart internet detectives to fill in the cultural blanks. I love it!
    You know, I had to Google what "MOR" is in terms of radio airplay. I hadn't heard that term before.
    Thanks for more great stuff, Bob :)