Sunday, March 1, 2020

Rock Radio MARCH 1970 Breaking Up Hard to Do

Rocking Memory Lane on a Sentimental Journey 

Every relationship that succumbs to “nothing lasts forever,” has a sentimental journey, whether we admit it or not. Just sometimes, it’s tough to remember the good times …

50 Years Ago this Month ~ MARCH 1970  

March 6th: The Beatles rolled out their swan song, "Let It Be" on this date, a full two months prior to the same titled album release, and a month before Paul McCartney announced his departure and dissolution of the band (April 10, 1970).
The Beatles grace the inside of KHJ/Los Angeles’s “Boss 30” Featured* music survey this month on which nary a Fab Four note is seen on the chart. It almost appears that sheepish George, Paul and John are peeking out from behind Ringo’s bravado, as another chapter ends in Rock & Roll history.

March 11th: In case you’re curious about winners from 1970’s 12th Grammy Awards on this date, here’s a few for your tuneful memories – Record of the Year: “Aquarius”/”Let the Sunshine In” (The Fifth Dimension), Best New Artist: Crosby Stills & Nash, Best Contemporary Vocal Performance, Female: Peggy Lee for “Is That All There Is?”. Ah … ♪ Let’s just keep dancing ♪ …
March 27th: Rather interesting is Ringo Starr’s release on this day, of his first solo album, Sentimental Journey. Considering only song titles reflecting their imminent break-up, The Beatles’ “Let It Be” (above) let’s them wash their hands of the band, while Starr’s “Sentimental Journey” gives it perspective. Awwww.
            The album is a who’s-who of classic romance and love-lost tunes like, “Stardust” (1927), “Love is a Many-Splendored Thing” (1955), and “You Always Hurt the One You Love” (1944). Was he trying to tell his bandmates something? … ♪ It’s because I love you most of all ♪ … 

On Your Tinny Transistor Radio ~ MARCH 1970        
Many a Radio DJ has lamented self-deprecatingly, “I have a face only for radio!” It was just the opposite, when the Real Don Steele showed up at KHJ/L.A.’s door in the mid-Sixties. They soon took advantage of Don’s photogenic California style and tapped him for their “Boss City” TV show by 1970. Smart move.
            Some stations of the era struggled with radio’s progressive changes and upgrades, like one that had a revolving door of formats and call letters, until finding its niche. KFMS/San Francisco began in 1968 at 106.1 as a new FM format for Top 40 power station, KFRC.
            Not only stations, but the FM signal was still fishing for its true calling and KFRC 610 AM established 106.1 as an innovative automated systemone of the first in the country—KFMS. Playing “Late Great and Favorite Goldens,” without the familiar DJ chatter, its chart songs are alphabetical. It listed many of the current hits, but not a rank number in sight.  
No doubt there was a call for simple, round-the-clock favorites, sans all the hype, which lasted until 1972 when it switched call letters again to KKEE, before reverting to KFRC-FM in September 1973. It rested, playing oldies and early soft rock as “K106,” finally finding its (somewhat) forever-home in the late ‘70s. Surely, if you were a NorCal resident then, you recall the KMEL! Yep—106.1 soon became another legendary Rock station of the 1980s.

Featured Radio Survey  ~ MARCH 1970 
Though many of us focused on the demise of The Beatles, another breakup was in the works with the duo of Simon & Garfunkel. They too were splitting after a #1 hit, “Bridge Over Troubled Water,” calling it quits later in the year. It hit the top at *KHJ/Los Angeles’ “Boss 30,” March 4, 1970 … 50 Years Ago this Month in Rock & Roll Radio! Where were you that groovy day when …

Celebrate MARCH 1970 and … Rock On!  

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LinDee Rochelle is a writer and editor by trade, and author by way of Rock & Roll. She has published two books (of three) in her Blast from Your Past series, available on Amazon (eBook and print): Book 1Rock & Roll Radio DJs: The First Five Years 1954-1959; and Book 2Rock & Roll Radio DJs: The Swinging Sixties. Coming soon … The Psychedelic Seventies!

Note: FYI – All links in the BFYP site are personally visited, verified, and vetted. Most are linked to commonly accessed sites of reputable note. However, as with everything cyber-security, use at your own discretion. 

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