It’s a weekend four decades in the making. WCBS-FM, the venerable Oldies turned Classic Hits station, is marking a milestone, after launching the vintage Top 40 tunes on July 7, 1972. To commemorate the occasion, the station is welcoming back, or playing vintage clips of, CBS-FM’s most popular DJs.
The call letters were created in the 1940s. In those nascent days of radio, WCBS-FM was simply a simulcast for the WCBS-AM’s programming.
Finally in 1966, CBS-FM started its own format. The Easy Listening, “Young Sound” was born. A year later, a plane crash into the transmitter, forced WCBS-AM to debut its all-news format on the FM tower.
In 1969, WCBS-FM, still seeking an identity, opted for a freeform rock genre, molded in the WOR-FM and WNEW-FM style.
But it was until 1972 that CBS-FM had its niche in New York–Oldies.
Bill Brown, longtime midday jock, and late night DJ Don K. Reed were CBS-FM “originals” from the freeform days.
The station wasn’t just the greatest oldies or greatest hits of the last 40 years. It showcased some of greatest jocks in history. Dan Ingram, Ron Lundy, Harry Harrison, “Triple D” Dandy Dan Daniel, Bob Shannon, Dan Taylor, and “Broadway” Bill Lee are just a select few that could be inducted into the CBS-FM “Hall of Fame.”
Ironically, as the audience got “older,” the music got younger. In the last several years, the original feel has been slightly altered to focus on the 1970s and 1980s, while putting the 1950s “Oldies” into “semi-retirement.”
The weekend lineup after the jump.