Music Troll - Home Page Link WPGC Aircheck:
Don Geronimo - 3/03/81


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'The Nearly Famous Don Geronimo...'

Don Geronimo's stellar career reads like a who's who in the annals of radio history with stops at 13Q / Pittsburgh, 99X / New York, PRO-FM / Providence and WDRQ / Detroit before coming home to Washington and WPGC in the Fall of 1979 where he was brought in by then Program Director, Scott Shannon for the first real skirmish with Q107's Uncle Johnny.

His impact was immediate and long felt; during his tenure WPGC righted itself and regained the CHR crown in DC. In 1981 he left for KIIS-FM in LA followed by stops at WLS & B96 / Chicago.

Don made his return to the Nation's Capital in 1985 doing afternoons at WAVA then moved to mornings the following year replacing Charlie & Harrigan. By then he had teamed up with Mike O'Meara and the rest is radio history.

Heard on this aircheck about 6 months before his two year stay at WPGC ended when he went to LA, Geronimo had reversed the station's fortunes at night in the battle with Q107. Within 90 days of this tape WPGC would command a comfortable lead in the clash of the Top 40 titans as Q107 unveiled the ill fated, 'Q Phase 2', an attempt to cash in on the strength of DC-101 driven by Howard Stern. Q dropped mechanics like talking over record intros, let songs fade off into oblivion and basically shot itself in the foot. WPGC meanwhile just kept playin' the hits and took no prisoners.

In a direct shot at Q107, Geronimo plays a WPGC Musicradio jingle (from JAM's Logoset / Priority One compilation package of 1976) no doubt at the suggestion of Program Director, Steve Kingston though both stations had been barred by a Judge from identifying themselves with that moniker in a ridiculous legal case over who had the right to use it. WPGC began using 'Musicradio' as a station identifier as early as 1972 but phased it out in 1978 (though it still appeared on the station's weekly playlists and letterhead). When Q107 signed on in early 1979, it appropriated the slogan claiming ABC ownership had used the phrase prior to WPGC in other markets such as at WABC in New York and WLS in Chicago. Nowadays stations register their slug lines for this very reason. At the time WPGC was identifying itself as '95FM & 1580AM'.

An Elliott & Woodside jingle also makes an appearance on this tape as the punch line in a phone bit about an appearance Don had made earlier for the Greenbelt Jaycees.

As for contesting, the station featured 'Free Money Music Sweeps' which were always worth at least $100 for listeners who could identify a series of songs that had been played. A tease for 'a winner a minute for three hours' is also heard on this aircheck as WPGC kept up the promotional pressure on Q107.

 




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