Yesterday

Saturday, December 29, 2012

When I was young, I would listen to the radio, waiting for my favorite songs, "Yesterday". This first line of an old Carpenters song has been repeating in my melon lately. It was a nostalgic song from the 1970s, accurately and fondly recalling growing up in the 50s. There was an ad campaign phrase at one time that referred to radio as the soundtrack of our lives, and nothing could be more accurate. Many local stations were affiliated to some extent to a national network that provided national news and features at the top of the hour, and some of them actually had local news reporters as well. But the centerpiece was the music. Everywhere you went, and while you were doing whatever you were doing, somewhere there was a radio, playing "your" music.

The only real specialized AM music station locally was WDOD, which played strictly Country, most of the rest were Top 40 stations. On a Top 40 station, you could listen to Pat Boone, followed by James Brown, Montovani, Al Martino, Brenda Lee, The Beachboys, or anything else that was selling records at Woolworths, or the Record Store. The few FM stations on at that time played strictly Classical music. Most of the DJ s were strictly that, played music, read the weather and an occasional ad, said their name once in a while, and more music. 

The early years air personalities were those of  your parents; Luther on WDEF of course, Harry Thornton "The Milkman" on WAPO. "Peanut" Faircloth on WDOD. Is there anyone of todays' generation who can fathom the "Milkman" moniker? When Harry went off every morning, he was followed by the "Les and Ritch Show", one of the earliest forms of local talk radio, in that they discussed other material between the music. They also co-owned a local record store.

As we began to relate more to what were becoming "air personalities" instead of DJ s, stations began to do more remote broadcasts, so we could actually see ,as well as hear the voices on the radio. The stunts became more outrageous, "Sonny Limbo" and Charley Champion did a thing in the show window in front of the old "Three Sisters" dress shop, where they broadcasted constantly for several days. WFLI was probably the first strictly Rock station in town, and they hit with a splash, and Chattanooga began to experience "churn", the constant rotating format changes of the majority of AM stations, especially as FM began to enter the mainstream.

Don Hill

Signal Mountain - North of the border


Time To Shift Our Thinking About Public Education And Community Development

There’s no denying that the month of January brings about new beginnings. But there is no reason why June or any other month can’t jump-start your desire for doing something you’ve never done before. Summertime is refreshing. It’s the ideal season to take a leap of faith and jump into something new. It’s a good time to shift the way you think; which will cause you to change the ... (click for more)

Let's Discuss Education

In recent days I have read attacks by Roy Exum against Education Commissioner Candice McQueen in the Chattanoogan.   Frankly, I am appalled with his words, and disappointed by his behavior.   It was Eleanor Roosevelt who said: "Great minds discuss ideas; average minds discuss events; small minds discuss people."  This would be an opportune ... (click for more)

Motorcyclist Dies After Crossing Center Line On Bonny Oaks Drive

A motorcyclist died after crossing the center line on Bonny Oaks Drive on Friday night. Chattanooga Police responded at 6:43 p.m. to a traffic crash at 7100 Bonny Oaks Dr.   A Jeep Renegade driven by 33-year-old Christina L. Cangelier was traveling east on Bonny Oaks Drive when a Suzuki motorcycle crossed the double yellow line and struck the Jeep head on. The ... (click for more)

Richard Anderson, 29, Struck And Killed While Trying To Cross Highway 153

Richard Anderson II, 29, was killed Friday night, while trying to cross Highway 153.   Chattanooga Police responded at 11:36 p.m. to a traffic crash involving a pedestrian struck.   A Honda Civic driven by Kelsey Hamilton, 20, was traveling southbound on Highway 153 in the middle lane with other traffic in adjacent lanes.   Mr. Anderson, wearing ... (click for more)

Baylor Beats GPS Again For D-II State Softball Title

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – Winning state championships in softball never gets old for Baylor coach Kelli Smith. They are all special and some more than others, but the latest that Baylor captured here at Starplex Field No. 3 Friday night might rank as one of Smith’s favorite. As you already know, the competition came down between the Lady Red Raiders and the GPS Bruisers. These ... (click for more)

Meigs Co. Stays Alive With 8-2 Win Over Summertown

MURFREESBORO, Tenn.  – The Meigs County Lady Tigers aren’t used to having to come from behind, but that was the case here at the Starplex Field No. 4 Friday morning. The defending Class A state champs had dropped a tough 2-1 loss to Forrest in the winners bracket semifinal on Thursday, but the Lady Tigers came back later that day with a 7-1 victory over Jackson Christian. ... (click for more)