Rich Keller at his Senior Prom, 1987 Rich Keller at his Senior Prom, 1987

WRSU Bumper Sticker

Rich Keller, 1999, Washington D.C.
Rich Keller, 1999, Washington D.C.

The Rich Keller Collection

Rich Keller writes:

"How could a kid, born and raised only 25 minutes from the George Washington Bridge, not be influenced by Top 40 radio in New York City? In the formative years of the late 1970's, early 1980's, my afternoons and evenings were filled with Ron Lundy, Dan Ingram and George Michael. On Sunday nights I would hide under my covers and listen to Musicradio77 on my portable radio until Howard Cossell came on at 10 p.m. I didn't know it then, but I was listening to the heart and soul of Top 40 radio.

And then, suddenly, it ended. All those personalities and music I learned to love ... gone. And just as I was growing old enough to appreciate WABC and it's place in radio history. For what seemed like forever I remained in a radio limbo: going from station to station, trying to find the magic that I lost.

The magic returned during my freshman year in high school -- 1983. Easy listening WVNJ went off the air, to be replaced by WHTZ, Z100. Back then it was my generation's equivalent to the glory days of WABC. Scott Shannon, J.R. Nelson, Anita Bonita, Janet From Another Planet, Shadoe Stevens, Jack the Wack, and Hollywood Hamifton - those are the personalities I remember from the Flamethrower. They brought the fun, and the competition, back into New York Radio. Top 40 was back!

So, as I said, how could I not be influenced to go into radio? I spent 3 of the best years of my life (before I got married, of course) at Rutgers University's WRSU-FM as in the news and community affairs departments. In my last year at college I held down reporting duties at 1450 WCTC-AM in New Brunswick, New Jersey; honing my skills for a future career in radio. Unfortunately, lack of opportunities and money prevented me from breaking into the big time, and I ended up in a career working with computers (Hey, who doesn't these days?) I'm still active in my college radio station, attending yearly on-air Alumni Reunions, and someday I'II return to the industry on a more full-time basis. In the end, I hope to be part of the next great generation in radio."

The Repository thanks Rich Keller for sharing!

[Descriptions by Rich Keller unless otherwise indicated]

G2 5.0 compatible TOP STREAM: 20.7Kbps (10 KHz)
PLAY WHTZ Z100 New York First Birthday, August 2 1984 (50:35)

. . . serving Newark, New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut. The hot-rockin' Z 100 . . .

Z100 The first birthday show ran from 6a.m. to noon without commercial interruption, just the way it was when WHTZ powered up in 1983. With the addition over the year of personalities such as Claire Stevens and Captain Kevin, the original Zoo Crew is now intact.

Classic bits and they even have time to give away the sheets that Michael Jackson slept on. Shades of the Beatles hysteria!

In my opinion, this is the prime of Z-100. You could tell that everything was clicking smoothly a year after they went on the air.

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G2 5.0 compatible TOP STREAM: 32.0Kbps (16 KHz)
PLAY The Best Z100 Morning Zoo WHTZ New York 1983-86, Volume 1 (1:27:58)

PLAY The Best Z100 Morning Zoo WHTZ New York 1983-86, Volume 2 (1:23:34)

. . . A man is only known by the company nobody knows he's keeping . . .
. . . My wife left town with a banana, my baby's slippin' away . . .

Z100 WIMPBUSTERS [Description by Uncle Ricky]

Both Volumes of this great compilation from Rich Keller highlight many entertaining moments from Scott Shannon's WHTZ Z-100 between 1983 and 1986. The WimpBusters graphic shows Shannon, Ross Brittain and Claire Stevens decked out in Ghostbusters style, presumably to eliminate the ghosts of WIMP, immortalized in song with 95 Dead Baboons.

Mr Leonard (John Rio) is everywhere! His virtual interviews with Michael Jackson (David Kolin) at his mansion are hysterical, if not historic. Happy Trails is here, along with several renditions of the closing show credits (J.R. Nelson and Jack the Wack.)

The second volume includes references to Jack Murphy, and many additional Z100 classics. Here are several examples of outstanding Top 40/CHR radio production of the generation raised on Boss and WABC.

There are surprises for Rangers, Bears and Rowdy Roddy Piper fans, and special faux appearances from The President, Corny Fields, Tom Snyder, and Yasser Sangria III. Plus, you will enjoy announcements about PMS (Post Menudo Syndrome), The Cyndi Lauper Burglar Alarm, the new New York City Medallion City Taxi Cab ride, Come Back to the South Bronx and many other wonderful amusements.

Thanks to Anita Bonita for additional background! (Uncle Ricky, 9/8/2001)

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G2 5.0 compatible TOP STREAM: 32.0Kbps (16 KHz)
PLAY Don Geronimo, WPGC Washington D.C. June 1980 (18:02)

. . . on the air, off the wall, feeling high and getting small. . .

WPGC was one of the premiere Top 40/contemporary hit music stations in Washington, D.C. for over three decades. In the 50's and 60's, it ruled supreme over the AM band, then became dominant as a FM station in the mid-70's.

As of January 2001, this station has an urban contemporary format, which keeps it at the top of the ratings. And Don Geronimo is syndicated on the Don and Mike show.

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G2 5.0 compatible STEREO TOP STREAM: 132Kbps (10 KHz)
PLAY Chris Stevens, WMAR-FM Baltimore, MD.
December 30, 1983

. . . a whole lotta love wrapped into three minutes and twenty four seconds . . .
We pay music licensing fees to present unedited music online. The REELRADIO organization depends on our listeners' support for these "unscoped" airchecks. Even if some airchecks are low-fidelity, like this narrowband stereo aircheck, we still pay fees for each and every song. Please support REELRADIO so we can continue to bring you unedited airchecks, and so we can pay for the bandwidth for all the edited airchecks, too!

It's Chris Stevens, 106 Hits mid-morning man on New Year's Eve Eve.

Listen for the "Baltimore Big Bucks" contest promo, which features an interesting way to win a prize.

Also, some of the songs on this aircheck haven't been heard on the radio since their initial broadcast.

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The Rich Keller Collection - Established September 19, 1999!

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