MovieChat Forums > WKRP in Cincinnati (1978) Discussion > My dad worked for a radio station in the...

My dad worked for a radio station in the 70's & 80's

My dad did the hourly news for 61 Country (610AM on the dial) in Kansas City for over 20 years. The broadcast booth, sales department, and sister FM radio station(KY-102 Classic Rock) were located on the 2nd floor, with the local NBC TV affiliate located on the bottom floor. The FM disc jockey was very similar to Johnny Fever. He went by the name Skid Roadie, he was short, wiry, only wore heavy metal t-shirts, and absolutely suffered no fools, I'd roam the halls on the weekends while my dad prepped his 5 minute newscast. In the copier room there was a very thick triple paned glass window where I could look down and watch the local news anchors do either the 6:30 or 10:00 nightly news. I could see they always wore jeans lol. Downstairs the entrance to the news tv set always had a security guard, no way was I going in there.

But yes, WKRP caught the 70's radio zeitgeist. There were zany characters all over that building, just like on the show. One DJ went by the name "The Afternoon Bozo", this was when the AM station was hurting in the ratings. Well, they fired The Bozo and immediately went to #1 in the arbitron ratings, stayed that way for 15 years even though it was low on the dial. I remember one of the young gals, Annie Austin, got fired for apparently no good reason and she called up my dad at home, crying. She quickly found a job at 810AM on the dial. Unlike the show, very rarely did a lot of people gather in one place, the sales department had about 10 desks but rarely more than 2 or 3 people in there at a time. The news dept. was a very small room with 2 teletypes(AP and UPI), 3 desks with typewriters, 3 TV's for the 3 major networks. Just outside the newsroom you could walk down the hall on and as you walked you'd go by the FM broadcast booth, then the AM news broadcast booth, and finally at the end of the hall was the AM broadcast booth. Usually the DJ's would stand up while they talked, in front of their microphone on the wall was always a big analog clock and a big warning sign that said "if you screw up, DON'T say the time!".