This page last updated Sunday, July 14, 2013


Billboard 1958 Article About The Launch Of WAKY

There has been much discussion about how WAKY came on the air. (See our interview with former McLendon Broadcasting National PD Don Keyes.) What song did they play? Did they play it for 24 hours straight or was it 72 hours (or more)? This discussion might never be settled without using a time machine, but for what it's worth, here's what Billboard magazine reported on July 21, 1958:

Psychological Ear Irritation

Louisville, Ky. -- Station WAKY (formerly WGRC) here lived up to its new call letters last week, via a day-long programming binge wherein its deejays played practically nothing but "The Purple People Eater Meets The Witch Doctor."

Every hour or so, "to give ears a change," the jocks played Jim Backus' equally wacky waxing "Delicious." The gimmick was utilized to kick off WAKY under its new owner Gordon McLendon. Philosophy behind the gag, said McLendon, was "People get completely disgusted....They tune away to another station. Then they wonder if 'they're still doing that on that other station.' So they turn back."