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Radio AM to FM: July 31, 1998

Tin Pan Alley Returns

The music of the 1920s and '30s returns to commercial radio in Los Angeles as Richard Halpern resurrects his Tin Pan Alley radio program every Saturday from 10 - 11 am on KGIL (1260 AM) beginning tomorrow. The program was last heard on big band-formatted KGRB (900 AM) until that station's unfortunate and untimely demise two years ago.

Halpern -- who is the voice of many of Rick Dees' characters on KIIS (102.7 FM) -- promises to play the music of such performers as Eddie Canter and Al Jolson just as he did on his previous program. "I love the music of the 'tin pan alley' era," says Halpern, "and I'm excited to be able to play it once again on KGIL."

UPDATE: As of Tuesday afternoon (7/28), KGIL manager Jim Roope is reporting that Tin Pan Alley will not air this weekend, due to a contract dispute between Halpern and KGIL.

Hall of Famer

Jaime Jarrin, who -- except for a seven year period when games were carried on KTNQ (1020 AM) -- has been the Spanish Voice of the Dodgers on KWKW (1330 AM) since the Dodgers moved to Los Angeles in 1958, was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York last Sunday, July 26th.

Jarrin was born in Ecuador and immigrated in to the United States in 1955. He earned a masters degree in psychology from UCLA and is, according to Vin Scully -- English-language broadcaster the Dodgers since 1949 -- "one of the most decent men" he has ever known.

According to Don Barrett, author of Los Angeles Radio People, Jarrin had a consecutive-game streak that surpassed the 3,800 mark, broken only because he took time away from the Dodgers to broadcast Spanish-language coverage of the Olympics in 1984.

Jarrin's son is also in broadcasting, known as traffic reporter "Captain Jorge" on KABC (790 AM).


There's a buzz in the air over at KLSX (97.1 FM), as the station has made significant ratings inroads in at least one demographic.

According to Arbitron, KLSX was number 13 among people aged 25-54 in the Spring Book. That compares with KFI at number 8 and KABC at number 20. In the highly-prized afternoon time slot, KLSX's Tom Leykis tied with KABC's Larry Elder (3.2) and was just a hair away from KFI's John and Ken (3.5) in the 25-54 demographic.

Programmer Jack Silver told one source that "(KLSX is) enjoying our most successful year in sales ever," although it is not clear whether he is referring to KLSX's talk days, music days or its days as KBZT, KHTZ, or KGBS-FM. My guess is that he is referring to the KLSX talk days, since the station was actually very successful prior to its fall as "classic rock" and adapting a talk format that until recently most people would rather forget.

Don't expect KFI to take this threat to their dominance lying down, though -- they've got too much invested in their programming to give up the talk top-spot without a fight. Looks like the talk wars may be heating up once again.


Copyright 1998 Richard Wagoner and The Copley Press