Music Troll - Home Page Link WPGC Aircheck:
'Cousin' Duffy - 2/04/67


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Dedicated in memory of Jim Collins



 

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'Sounding good like a great radio station should...'

'Cousin' Warren Duffy came to WPGC in 1966 as Program Director and afternoon man, positions he held down until 1968 when he left for sister station, WMEX in Boston. He later programmed KMET in Los Angeles. From 1994 - 2004 he did afternoons in LA at Salem's KKLA but has recently retired.

The good Cousin's frenetic pace was perfectly suited for the high energy style of Good Guys radio. Duffy took a backseat to no one when it came to double barrel excitement. Heard on this aircheck as the station took a break from its 'Weekend Spectacular' (every other record a 'Good Guys Goldie') for his 'Saturday Survey Show', Duffy counts down the hits to #1 (a double play of Monkees' album cuts) from the WPGC 'Tunedex'.

Along the way he features the 'Best Bet of the Week', the new Beatles song, 'Strawberry Fields Forever' and makes sure his listeners know the song isn't over when the false ending fades out not once but twice during his show. The psychedelic sound of the record and his favorable reaction to it are ironic; believe it or not, Duffy would later go on to become one of the pioneers in 'underground' radio!

This however was still the era of in-your-face Top 40 and as was the custom, Cousin Duffy did countless teen age dances. The weekend of this tape alone, he appeared at St. Patrick's Church in Falls Church on Friday plus the Episcopal Church of the Holy Comforter for his 'Saturday Shindig' where local bands were featured including an all-girl band, 'The Her'.

The connection with churches is amusing; Duffy would ultimately abandon the Rock & Roll lifestyle in his later years and become a born-again Christian. For a decade he hosted a show on a religious station in Los Angeles and is still a much in demand public speaker!

A man of many talents, Duffy also does several newscasts as 'Warren (sans Cousin) Duffy' throughout the show, covering stories such as a Navy plane that crashed on the Beltway and Maryland abolishing the law prohibiting mixed marriages. Opposition to the Vietnam War had yet to reach a fevered pitch; the 'Serviceman Salute' at the end of the news seems all the more poignant in retrospect.

Many radio station General Managers had been known to voice editorials on their stations. But few had the long lasting impact of Bob Howard who had joined the station in 1959 and been the anonymous voice of 'Mr. Soundoff' for nearly as long. A Soundoff on boys shooting birds with BB guns is heard on this aircheck.

Contesting tied in with the rapidly rising star of the Monkees. The Monkees Contest in which listeners would write in and profess their undying love for the quartet was to begin in a matter of days. In the meantime, WPGC prepared to celebrate Chinese New Year by giving away fortune cookies containing prizes such as Chinese dinners and wristwatches with the numbers in Chinese.

Jingles on this tape were primarily from a package created in 1966 by Spot Productions of Dallas known as 'Funtastic', though several cuts from previous packages by PAMS are also heard before each song on the countdown.

The plethora of commercials on this aircheck is overwhelming. Though a few are agency produced (notably for Pepsi and the Supremes for Coke), most were of local origin. Significantly, many of the establishments advertised were on the Virginia side of the Potomac, as by then WPGC had outgrown its Maryland only orientation of a few years earlier and had developed into a major Metro area radio force to be reckoned with.

Many spots are two person ones with numerous combinations of the airstaff, the most frequent pairing being morning man, Harv Moore & Cousin Duffy. The practical explanation for this is both performers had to be off the air at the same time. Hence many of these were recorded in the middle of the day when they both were! This may also explain why midday guy Bob Raleigh (Bill Miller, the fifth of six different jocks to use the name at the station over the years) is heard solo on all of those that he does.

Morning news guy, Marv Brooks is the voice of Burger Chef and Gateway Square Apartments. Elvis' latest flick, 'Spinout' was playing at the Ranch Drive-in Theatre voiced by Harv Moore, who is also heard on Dave Pyles Linclon-Mercury ad. And 'JA the DJ', Jack Alix speaks for the Carnaby Street Shop ('in tune with teens') at the Hecht Company.

'Sgt. Pepper' and the psychedelic era it ushered in was just a few months away.......the times indeed were 'a-changin'.

 




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