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


Bob Corker Devolves On Same-Sex Marriage

“Devolve:  to degenerate or deteriorate gradually; to change gradually for the worse; decline; deteriorate.”  Ten years ago Bob Corker, former Chattanooga mayor, was meeting with his staff and advisors to formulate a strategy that would enable him to move from local politics to one of the highest profile stages in the nation.  As Bob met with his team they discussed ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Mom’s Parting Instructions

My mother, Helen Exum, went to be with the Lord in late August of last year and, in the way folks do, I was going through some of her files last week when I ran across an envelope with my name on it. Inside was a story and written in her hand were the words, “This is a wonderful story for you to tell!” Not being one to disobey my mother and not about to waylay the wishes of the ... (click for more)

Hard Freeze Predicted In The Area For Saturday Night

Temperatures are expected to drop Saturday night to 28 degrees or less. Here is the latest report from the National Weather Service:  HARD FREEZE WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FROM MIDNIGHT EDT /11 PM CDT/ TONIGHT TO 11 AM EDT /10 AM CDT/ SUNDAY... * EVENT... A HARD FREEZE EXPECTED WITH LOWS FROM THE TEENS NORTH TO THE UPPER 20S SOUTH LATE TONIGHT AND SUNDAY MORNING. ... (click for more)

Man Charged In Shooting On Sixth Avenue Had Been Shot Himself Last Week; Police Say Incident "Part Of Gang War"

A man charged with attempted first-degree murder on Sixth Avenue Court on Thursday afternoon was shot himself earlier this month. O'Shae Kadaris Smith, 20, of 2114 E. 12th St., is also charged with reckless endangerment, aggravated assault and possessing a firearm during the commission of a crime. He was one of two people shot on Rawlings Street on March 16. Kendre Allen, ... (click for more)

Lady Vols Headed To Elite 8 With 73-69 OT Win

For the 27th time Tennessee is headed back to the Elite Eight. The second-seeded Lady Vols had an epic rally to defeat upstart #11 seed Gonzaga, playing two miles from its campus, 73-69 in overtime, at the Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena on Saturday  night. Tennessee (30-5) will take on No. 1 seed Maryland (33-2) in the Elite Eight for a chance to reach their 19th Final ... (click for more)

Grissom Rolls Past Boyd-Buchanan For Pounder Classic Title

Virgil L. Grissom High’s baseball did accomplished exactly what it wanted to do in Chattanooga this weekend. The hard-charging Tigers rolled past Boyd-Buchanan, 9-3, Saturday night before a good – and cold -- crowd and captured the Pounder Classic baseball tournament title in impressive fashion. On a night when the wind chill factor hit 36 in the sixth inning, Grissom ... (click for more)