• Category Archives Spotlight
  • [Article 1744]Spotlight 08

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    This week we highlight WCPR/WFAT/WHOT all stations helmed by he same scurvy crew Hank Hayes and Jim Nazium.

    It all began with WCPR on the upper end of the AM broadcast band in the mid 70s. Which was visited by the FCC and subsequently taken off the air. It wouldn’t bee the last time Hank and Jim crossed paths with the FCC. They wer’nt off the airwaves for long, they soon returned with the soon to be legendary WFAT.

    WFAT signed on April 14th, 1979 to say goodbye – at least until things calmed down a little. As they were preparing to wrap up the show. Jim noticed the courtyard below filling up with official-looking vehicles, out of which FCC agents began running into the building. “Hal” and “Larry” announced that the FCC was on the way up, and immediately pulled the plug on the show, dismantling the transmitter and cutting the long wire antenna. The FCC agents were not fooled.   It wasn’t long before they were back on the air via FM as WILD, a low power outlet at 91.5 under the new names of Hank Hayes and Jim Nazuim.

    By 1980, the guys were in a new location, doing semi-regular broadcasts at 91.5 FM (or “91 and a half” as it was being called) as the newly-christened WHOT-FM, sporting a new sounding Top-40/Oldies format that relied on the time-honored radio traditions of high-personality on-air DJs, jingles, and (of course) reverb!

    By 1985, WHOT’s listenership was growing in leaps and bounds, thanks in no small part to a power boost  and an increase in broadcast hours. Then, during the early-morning hours of November 26th when suddenly there was a pounding on the door. Jim looked through the peephole to see two FCC agents demanding entry to the building. WHOT  signed off abruptly, and refused to answer the door. After an hour or so of knocking, the FCC agents gave up. After spending some time off the air, WHOT relocated temporarily to a different address, thanks to a listener who himself would run a pirate later – none other than Johnny Lightning of WJPL fame. WHOT got through the New Year’s Show of ‘85, and as impossible as it sounds, the FCC showed up AGAIN at the “new” location early in 1986! Again, having no warrant, their entry was refused. WHOT had now been “busted” twice in two different locations within the last three months – without any actual “bust”.

    There is a lot of history and information to these guys and I cant do them justice. Everything from their stint on RNI to the return of WHOT in 1987 to its bust in July of 89. Then the Radio free New York crew on WWCR shortwave, then finally broadcasting on WBCQ.
    The hank and Jim radio team have a huge amount of pirate radio history and deservedly placed in the  pirateradiohalloffame.com from there you can follow the links to the many pages dedicated to their radio history, with air checks and video from the busts and a lot of really interesting material.

    Find the entire 1983 Independence Day aircheck HERE  And the entire history pages HERE.

     



  • [Article 1727]Spotlight 07

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    The Voice of Bob made its inaugural broadcast on pirate shortwave in July 1984 on 7415khz. The Voice of Bob had become legendary by the mid-90′s and typically only came on once or twice a year. As the Church of the Sub-Genius made a bigger splash on college and commercial radio, the pirate station, slowly faded into obscurity.

    The Voice of Bob is centered around J.R. Bob Dobbs, a cartoon faced man with a pipe who looks oddly like Ward Cleaver from the “leave it to Beaver” tv show. He is the charismatic guru leader of the Church of the Sub-Genius, which for many years was based out of Dallas, Texas. Voice of Bob programming is fast paced, and is in fact taken from shows that are usually performed before a large live audience. Bob’s virtues are extolled through hard rock music, sketches, and testimonials. Pirate DX’ers are told they can be “healed” by Bob if they put their hands on the radio!

    Check out The voice of Bob and the Ivan Stang interview at their page on pirateradiohalloffame.com

     



  • [Article 1618]Spotlight No. 4

    Hall of Fame Spotlight No. 4- Radio Garbanzo.

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    The second edition of The Hall of Fame Spotlight with a look back at Radio Garbanzo.

    Since its first pirate transmission in 1987, Radio Garbanzo has become known as having some of the best produced programs in the North American pirate radio scene. Radio Garbanzo was known for elaborate skits and for playing music ”that FM used to play, but threw away like an old prostitute while seeking bigger profits” just a few of the plots in Radio Garbanzo programs have involved station manager Buck McMoney turning the station into a radio home shopping network, Radio Garbanzo overtaking a satellite uplink, spiking Huge G. Gough with LSD, Buck McMoney going to jail and finally the gang broadcasting mobile from an Ethel’s Panel truck.

    Unfortunately Radio Garbanzo was silent nearly from about 1991 to 1998. Fearless returned with a new, music based program that was heard by many listeners with good signals in December 1999. This program was repeated New Year’s day. The station was silent until May, when it rattled off seven of its eight broadcasts for the year. Three of these were the well produced Radio Garbanzo semi-annual Memorial Day shows in which Fearless pays a respectful tribute to the shortwave pirates that had been raided by the FCC over the last ten years. Several of the other broadcasts aired were for the Mothers Day 2000 show, which included a timely ad for the U.S. Forest Service Fires-R-Us Los Alamos BBQ.

     

     

    (from Andy Yoder’s Pirate Radio Stations: Tuning in to Underground Broadcasts in the Air and Online)

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     



  • [Article 1613]Spotlight No. 3

    Hall of Fame Spotlight No. 3- the Voice Of Pancho Villa.

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    The second edition of The Hall of Fame Spotlight with a look back at the Voice Of Pancho Villa.

    Each year at the end of the SWL Winterfest Pancho Villa takes to the airwaves.  The program is usually written in the closet of one of the rooms, by someone highly intoxicated, and then on the last day of Winterfest, a motely crew of DX’ers, partied out, record the program.  The part of Pancho has been played by a number of different people over the years, but Harold Cones is undoubtedly the best (?) of the Pancho’s.  Every DX’er of note has been on a “Voice of Pancho Villa” program over the years.  It is played over the air by those who came to Winterfest with an FM or Shortwave radio transmitter, which is usually 99% of the people. Typically it is heard at Midnight to mark the END of Winterfest on many FM and Shortwave frequencies.

    Pancho audio page.

    Also check out the interview that John T Arther gave  back in 1990 on Pat Muphy’s show on WNIS 

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  • [Article 1607]Spotlight No. 2

    Hall of Fame Spotlight No. 2- KNBS.

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    The second edition of The Hall of Fame Spotlight with a look back at KNBS
    KNBS took to the air in January of 1985 to advocate decriminalization of marijuana. Front man Phil Muzik used a low-key approach, playing pot-themed music and reminding listeners that in a “free country” the individual, not the government, had the constitutional right to make the decisions in his or her life. Studio engineer Pot Seedy was never heard on the air, and usually couldn’t be seen in the booth because of all the pot smoke in there. The station used the slogan “The Station With Your Mind In Mind.”The station was owned and operated by the California Marijuana Cooperative and claimed a transmitter site on Alcatraz Island, in San Francisco Bay. In later years KNBS was joined by a Canadian relay station, CNBS, but it was difficult to tell which transmitter was in use for any broadcast since it was never announced.

    KNBS also supported NORML, and cooperated with Radio Free Euphoria from time to time. They were a good verifier with a few different cards and a series of sheets and posters. They also sent out pennants and, for a lucky few, pens. The last reported transmission from KNBS was on New Year’s Day in 1998.



  • [Article 1602]Spotlight No. 1

    Hall of Fame Spotlight No. 1- The Voice of Laryngitis.

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    The first edition of The Hall of Fame Spotlight with a look back at The Voice of Laryngitis.

    The Voice of Laryngitis is legendary in the field of pirate radio… and deservedly so. No pirate station in North America (and possibly the world) has ever developed such complex and humorous original skits. In fact, most of the skits are more complex than anything heard on shortwave or commercial radio. Because of the style of programming and the work involved, only about 20 different 45 minute programs from The Voice of Laryngitis have been created since their inception in November 1983. As a result, the station has rarely operated since programs stopped being produced on a regular basis in 1985. In light of everything, it is easier to compare The Voice of Laryngitis to The Fireside Theater than to other long time active pirates.

    The Voice of Laryngitis was operated by a rather large extended family, all whom have the surname “Huxley”. The two main announcers on The Voice of Laryngitis are the gruff voiced Genghis and his nephew, Cowboy Stan. They were joined by Rev. Billy Bob Huxley, Bull Bruiser, Fudgie, and many others.

    Although the programs vary in content, many of them are sponsored by Friendly Freddy’s Budget Burial, “where death is cheap.” Freddy’s ads for kitchen cremation kits and other no-frills funerals are backed by a calliope like organ played backwards at slow speed. Another regular feature was the Rev. Bob Huxley, who appears in various skits and ads for such things as a championship mud wrestling grudge match “Battle of the Monster Ministers” with Oral Roberts. Mr Huxley’s Neighborhood(a survivalist parody of “Mr. Rogers Neighborhood” was produced n 1983- before every comedy group did parodies of Mr. Rogers); full news coverage of the Persian Rug War, “Let’s Ring the President” with President Reag- no. Barney; the Atilla Huxley Assassination show., and much more.

     



  • [Article 1589]The Hall of Fame Spotlight

    Announcing The Hall of Fame Spotlight!

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    I know that many of you have been missing the piratesweek, and I have been asked by a bunch of you when I was bringing it back. Well, I may be doing that later this year but right now I am announcing a new show that will be debuting next week.
    That’s right.  Friday Night, January 6th I will be on WBCQ Area 51 following Allan Weiner Worldwide with my bran new show the Hall of Fame Spotlight.
    Allan usually  wraps up his show around 9:15 pm eastern or so and then I’ll be on after him, 5110 khz on WBCQ. I’ll also will be hosting the new shows a couple days later on Sunday mornings on piratesweek.info and they will be up on this feed.
    So tune into WBCQ, Area 51, 5110 kHz Friday nights a little after 9pm eastern and catch the Hall of Fame spotlight where we will be taking an in depth look at some of the best pirate shortwave radio has to offer.
    Until then, as always- thanks for listening.