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|Mar 29, 04
As a teenager, I grew up listening to KWFM. It was easily the best rock
station in the area, and Tucson's only FM stereo rock station. I'm
pleased to be able to offer this tribute site and hope you will enjoy
browsing it. Please take a moment to sign the guestbook. If you have
any airchecks or memorabilia, we would love to hear from you. Cheers.
|Mar 30, 04
I'll scan some 8x10 promo photos I have of Bob Cooke and send them to
you. Thanks for putting together the web site.
a.k.a Eric Spector
KWFM 1977-1980 or so.
|Mar 30, 04
Tim, thank you for constructing this web site. As General Manager of
KWFM from 1972 to 1982 it gives me great pride to know that after all
these years listeners continue to remember KWFM.
Many of the crew have gone on to start their own businesses while many
have continued in radio. Matt Siegel 20 years # 1 at Boston's WXKS,
Larry Jacobs ABC Radio News, Lou Waters CNN, Karen Stern Denver radio
personality and voice talent. Little did we know that the innovative
and creative staff which deveoped: Live from Lee Furr's, the Radio/TV
simulcasts of national acts, the outdoor birthday celebrations at
Randolph Park and the Rock n Roll Picture Show — to name but a few —
would live on for so many years.
We should also remember the greats that have since passed away; in
particular the first P.D. Mark Young and of course Bob Cooke.
Thanks to every one who supported KWFM then and continue to remember it
Tim, Thanks !
|Mar 31, 04
Wow...what a tribute to a great time in our lives, both as professionals
working in radio, but more importantly, as people who LOVE MUSIC! Those
were the days when DJs were creative, when we could meet to discuss what
songs on a record would be best to play. No computers. No consultants.
OLD SCHOOL BABY! Thank you for putting this site up, and I will be
making audio and video available. Remember the Frank Zappa interview?
I've got it on tape! KWFM rocks Tucson...my first radio gig and a great
place to cut my teeth.
KWFM DJ 1980-1987
|Mar 31, 04
||Mt. Pleasant SC
Watching this site come alive is very exciting. While I was in Tucson
in February I ran into many people that still have great memories of
KWFM. I have listened to the tapes from that time and it is amazing
just how good that station sounded. Holy cow, we knew how to have a
party. 50 ounce pitchers of beer for 92 cents at the Outlaw! The
people that worked on the air and manager Lee Dombrowski made it click.
If anything was ever a group effort, KWFM was. I will be sending all
my memories to Tim to share with others. There's not too many days
that go by that I don't have a great memory about my time there. While
listening to the tapes I got chills listening to Bob Cooke and Jim
Owens. Great friends taken away from us way too early. They would
love this site. The KWFM Birthday party at Reid Park, Lee Dombrowski
and I met with Jim Ronstadt who asked us how many people we thought
might show up. We smiled and said "if we're lucky about 1500 or so."
Well, 10,000 people showed up and Mr. Ronstadt was not happy with us at
all. What a blast! The number of artists that dropped by KWFM studios
to do interviews — the names are many and there was always a "Party on
|Apr 6, 04
Wow! This brings back some memories! I loved KWFM! As a youngster,
rock musician and budding radio guy myself, that was the pinacle to
which I aspired.
I have a Bob Cooke story... I was a student DJ in the late 70s on
KUAT-AM (the local public radio/jazz station).
Bob called me during my shift one night to ask if I'd ever considered
doing commercial radio. He said he thought I'd do well in the
That blew my mind! Having this pro-DJ calling to talk to me was a
thrill that I still recount decades later. It meant a lot to me. I was
so sad when he left us...and in such a bizarre way!
I still do a bit of announcing on TV and Radio in Tucson, but one of my
buddies (also a budding student DJ at the time) is still burning up the
airwaves in Tucson...Mike Rapp.
A hearty pat on the back to all those who made my college years more
liveable by letting me tune into KWFM on my radio!
|Apr 7, 04
||Julie Kuhel/Van Loan/McKee
Tim, Thank you for this history of KWFM. Being a 4th generation native
from Tucson and working there starting in 1982 was an honor.
|May 12, 04
What a kick! I'm having a little trouble concentrating at work today as
I just discovered this webpage. I keep looking at the pictures and
remembering how I felt 25 years ago when they were taken...knowing that
Bob and Jim aren't with us any more...knowing that I missed the reunion
and haven't seen the rest of you in that long...and still being in
radio knowing how much things have changed! What an amazing time of my
life. Thank you all for being a part of it.
|May 14, 04
||Mt Pleasant SC
Jim Ray is my father! Crazy but true! Seeing him back before I was
born is nuts! With the aviators and members only jackets, he was the
|May 15, 04
||Mt. Peasant SC
My daughter Colby found the web site. A treat for her to see the old
man in his aviators and his partners with their members only jackets.
Tell your kids to look at it and respond...
Tim, you have done a great job putting this together. We need to
recognize the UNSUNG HEROS of KWFM. THE SALES & SUPPORT STAFF. Back in
the day people like Larry Sotosanti, Lauren, Chris, Julie, Linda, Sue,
Tom, Jennie, Dave, Regina Barndt, Nancy Wilson, (and a ton more that I
can see their faces but can't recall their names) helped PAY THE RENT!
The owner at the time shall we say was a bit "frugal". When we needed
something for the station these guys went out and made it happen for
us. We didn't always agree but they loved it as much as we did.
Larry Sotosanti was the original Herb Tarlick (WKRP) — this guy made
sure we all had free pizza and beer trade somewhere. Larry was the
originator of the "Blues Brothers" look-a-like contest that went on for
weeks and helped us get "off the dime", so to speak.
People like Joe Crystal — not part of our generation but put up with us
— will always be remembered. (He had a great collection of Bolo Ties,
Mexican Wedding Shirts and Kachina Dolls.)
Then the "BIG GUY" Jim Hardy came along with the corporate strcture
that would eventually put KWFM in the money making column. We didn't
agree with the structure but we accepted it and he brought the "TEAM"
to the table. Thanks Jim.
Thanks again for the site. Lets fill it up with memories!
|May 18, 04
I arrived in Tucson in mid-August 1981 as the new General Manager under
the new Sandusky ownership. Lee Dombrowski stayed on as General Sales
Manager, Jimmy Ray was Program Director, Jim Owens was Production
Director. It was a "magic" time for me in my 36 year broadcast career
and I reflect on it often.
Thanks for putting it all together.
|May 20, 04
Talk about a time warp..what a wonderful site. KWFM was truly one of a
kind, because of the people who were there and the music that we could
I'm a 2nd generation radio person; my dad and aunts and uncles were in
the biz in the way old days. But moving to Tucson, it was Bob Cooke
that said "hi, you have a great voice"..dragged me into the production
room, Jim Ray said "o.k., we'll give her a shot", and 22+ years later I
can't get radio out of my system.
Thanks to Jim Hardy, who called me his "baby d.j." and gave me my first
taste of major market radio at KBPI, Denver, and Lee Dombrowski, who
wouldn't let me quit when I threw a hissy-fit!
I have tapes I need to share, being a wife and mommy to two beautiful
boys, finding time to xfer my stuff to c.d./mp3 is a challenge, but I
promise to come through!
Tim, you're great, thank you for giving us this site to share a unique
time in radio.
weekends/middays/research/production February 1982- August 1984
|May 23, 04
What an honor to see my name listed as a former employee. I was only at
the station for three months (I think) at at $350/mo...that's all I
could afford. When my salary was cut to $175/mo. and was billed for
the electricity used to record my "news," I finally got the hint and
left. Short time but major creativity. News isn't fun anymore...it's
downright nasty. Reunion plans? Please let me know...I love Tucson.
|May 25, 04
Thanks for putting this site together and including my too brief stay
I still return to Tucson yearly and love it but I do miss the free days
|Jun 11, 04
Thanks to my dear friend Lee Dombrowski for e-mailing me this site! I
was happy to be a part of KWFM during the greatest years, and a pioneer
woman jock in the good old days. I will be happy to dig out some old
playlists and send them in...I see you have perhaps the best photo of
me that was ever taken! I keep in touch with Lee and Matty
Siegel...would love to hear from the rest of you.
|Jun 12, 04
I came to town in 1980: worked at KIKX, KCUB, and KCEE...listened to
KWFM. When I heard that "we" (Behan Broadcasting) had purchased KWFM,
I was hoping for a shot at a shift. I got one...AFTER the format had
changed. Be careful what you wish for...
|Jun 16, 04
Where else in 1970 could anyone hear songs like "The Legend of the USS
Titanic" by Jaime Brockett but KWFM? Or anything by King Crimson? Or
"Layla" coming from a cheap FM radio purchased at AMA? Or Hot Tuna's
"Water Song" played at sunset from a backyard patio on a steamy,
post-monsoon-rain summer day?
But I digress. My yellow Datsun wore the stripey KWFM bumper sticker
until the sun bleached it white. Were there any other stations then? Oh
yeah: KTKT. Pop. Shrimp.
Y'all have your memories, I have mine. KWFM was there for so many of
them. Thanks to all.
|Jun 18, 04
Dear Old Real Radio Hounds,
Imagine my surprise….. KWFM certainly lives in my head and heart, and
I’m happy to see all the aged expatriates writing in to confirm that
they have not been swallowed-up by what now passes for commercial
radio. Since my mother was the first female newscaster in New Mexico
(in, I believe, 1938) I have a small bit of family investment in the
free airwaves. Mom would like that New Times picture of me too… all
It is of course crucial to add some names to the employee list. Those
of us in the Public Affairs Department in 1974 (ok, that means me) were
busy recording news-maker and rocker interviews for the show entitled
“Love News Confusion,” an original creation by Dick Hermans whom I
replaced. My personal favorite interview exists now as a CD: a killer
discussion with John McLaughlin, who presented a number of stunning
insights into his spiritual and musical paths. Forgive me but the
interviews with Ravi Shankar, Howard Baker, John Mayall, and Cheech and
Chong (recorded at the still-standing El Minuto after their show) have
long disappeared into tape-dust.
I am indebted to many of you for an era of very creative effort, and
my final hurrah in public media. The experience drove me to become a
psychotherapist, where I still work with crazed individuals but now
make more than $40 a week.
*thanks to those guys in the next-door Spanish radio station for
calling me “Pescado” whenever they saw me
*thanks to Matt Seigel for demonstrating that a music segue could
literally provoke an altered state of consciousness
*thanks to Lee Dombroski for selling advertising so that I could spend
eight hours generating thirty minutes of taped music and interviews
*thanks to Janey Snyder for being the brilliant station on-air female
presence and for playing Allman Brother’s “Blue Sky” every time I
phoned in the request…
Let’s quit our day jobs and start up again! I’m ready!
|Jun 24, 04
I'm still a close friend of Jane Snyder and know Perk pretty well. I
used to hang at KWFM with Janie in the good ole days and remember
several live interviews that took place at the board. What great
memories. (I'm not saying anything here Janie!) It was a tribute to
Jane that years after, when she would visit Tucson and the station
would give her courtesy air time, guys would still send her roses and
chocolates. We remember her airtime well. What a good time we all had
in those years. KWFM was the only radio station worth listening to
then. I moved here in 1972 and met Janie that first month. What good
fortune. Thanks Lee and everyone else for putting this together. I
look forward to more photos and some stories.
|Jul 4, 04
A great site. Thank You
|Jul 24, 04
Hey, you folks got my name all wrong! It all started back in 1976 at
KIKX 580, .........KWFM ..... KLPX ..... KKLD .....KUPD ..... KDKB
.... England .. Guam ... and the saga continues!
|Aug 29, 04
Far out, truly wild. Hearing the Beatles ID again brought me back to 19.
Hey - I have HOURS of the Sunday night KWFM Jazz Show on fairly good
stereo 3-1/4 inch tape. How do we upload this analog stuff?
|Aug 29, 04
||Zuma Beach CA
What a trip ... this site takes me back to the Naked Pueblo ... the
Stumble Inn ... halter tops ... the best rock and roll station in the
world right there at 92.9.
I remember getting into an argument with the program director - Guy
Zapoleon, who's now a certified radio genius - when they put KRQQ on
He said Tucson in 1978 had the lowest FM penetration in the country
because FM was so bad. I argued that it was low because the only rock
station - KWFM- was too good for the masses.
He looked at me like the populist simpleton that I was.
Hearing the Beatles station ID took me to the back seat of a Datsun
210, waking up one morning in at Gates Pass and listening to the
Beatles during a Tucson sunrise....
[I have several hours of reel-to-reel tape of the KWFM jazz show -
which I loved - from the late '70s. Pls e-mail me if you want a dub...]
|Sep 19, 04
I found this site while trying to locate any information on the
DJ, Nina Joy. Besides this station, she also was on the FM station
"KDKB" (The early, really cool format KDKB, not the commercial-format
station it later turned into) in Phoenix in the early '
1970's. Does anyone know whatever happened to Nina Joy...???
|Sep 19, 04
I still have one of the famous (infamous?) classic KDKB "Howdy!"
T-shirts. Does anyone else besides me remember them?!
|Sep 26, 04
I had dinner with Nina Joy many years (10?) ago. She was out of the
radio biz and working for American Express at the time. Lost track of
her after that.
I gave her a tape of the Open Forum Program the day after Bill Compon
passed away. E-mail me if you want a copy.
|Oct 18, 04
Awesome Website! Thanks for a Historical tour of Radio here in Tucson.
Working with Margie and some of the others I am certain we've only
heard the tip of the iceberg when it comes to some of the stories out
there of "the ole days" Thanks again for the site.
|Oct 27, 04
Hey Cats and Kitties. I love this site. As a former radio personality
in town, I have fond memories of your station, including Sunday night
Jazz. Tucson needs a full-time jazz station again. Long live the
"Great American Art Form."!
|Nov 3, 04
searching google for Nina Joy and came up with this website. I was lucky
enough to grow up in Phoenix and listen to underground radio the way it
should be...KDKB 93.3 FM and 1510 if you AM..as the firesign theatre
used to say during station ID's. never got to listen to Tuscon
radio...but heard Nina and the rest...they definately shaped my
listening styles...and I thank them for that. Nina had the Lost Gonzo's
on one evening and I got to request a couple of songs...I still have
that night on tape...1977ish ....
|Nov 3, 04
PS...oops that's Tucson...forgive me for the mispellin