The Sounds Abound (ms)

Friend Flannery fell in love with the music of his generation. I, on the other hand, fell in love with one of the major purveyors of that music: WARM Radio.

Strange how these things happen. One day cruising along listening to any old thing and the next a friend says, “Give a listen to this”, and from then on I was one with my radio.

It wasn’t that the Mighty 590 had no competition. Those were the glory days of AM radio and music was blasting out of major cities like New York, Buffalo, Chicago; all of them powerhouse stations with fifty thousand watts and disc jockeys with voices that could make windows rattle fifty feet from the radio. WARM had five thousand watts, not much but it was our five thousand watts.

I listened to WARM every chance I had and so did an ever- increasing number of others. The key was a small electronic device called a transistor and it allowed radios to shrink down to about the size of a pack of cigarettes. So the Mighty 590 with its Five Towers of Power could fit into a shirt pocket allowing the greatest sounds around to play wherever and whenever you wanted. It was a revolution! We had our own station that played our own music and we could listen any time for WARM was on 24 hours a day. We were not just bonded to the station, we were Super Glued.

They brought big name acts in to perform at WARM Day in the old Rocky Glen park in Moosic. The event faded when the acts wanted to be paid for their work and not just show up to promote a record. George Gilbert, Ron Allen, Harry West and so many others became close friends of ours even though they wouldn’t know any of us from the guy who cleaned the windows. We thought they did and that was really what counted.

The station boomed on through the sixties and in the 1970’s, by random good luck otherwise known as being in the right place at the right time, I went to work at the studios in Avoca. I did news on a 3 to 11 shift five nights a week and a few hours on Sunday. I was the news guy for personalities like Bob Woody, Christopher Sky and Tim Karlson to mention but a few and it was an outrageous time in my life. I loved the work as much as I loved the station and the guys I did news for. If you can recall ever seeing WKRP in Cincinnati on television you have some idea of what went on. We maintained the integrity of the news but before and after anything might happen and often did.

Well, AM radio took a downturn, replaced largely by FM, which in turn fell to satellites, and the Internet. All of us moved on to other things or other markets and the Mighty 590, while still a presence, was not the dominant voice it once was.

I do think of it at times though, especially while porch sitting on a pleasant summer evening; always a perfect time for radio that was really my radio played by my own personal friends, the Sensational Seven.

–Mike Stevens

~ by admin on March 20, 2012.

One Response to “The Sounds Abound (ms)”

  1. Hey Mike, I can’t decide what to do today. Should I go to Goose Island and visit with Pushy Bosco, or go to the WARM Building for the Pineapple Feature? By the way… any updates on Tondelayo Jones?

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