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Airwaves: June 19, 2009

Finally a KMET Friday

It was Valentines Day in 1987 when the legendary Southern California album rocker KMET (now KTWV, 94.7 FM) left the airwaves in order to make room for The Wave.

Now, over two decades later, KMET is coming back.

On July 10th, 100.3 The Sound will re-create KMET for one day, using as many original Mighty Met personalities as possible. On the A-list of potential participants right now are Jeff Gonzer (recently added to the Sound’s staff for weekends and fill-ins), Ace Young, Pat “Paraquat” Kelley, David Perry, and the master programmer herself who led KMET into and through it’s glory days, Sam Bellamy.

Actual recordings are being used to help set the tone for the day. Some of these airchecks will be played on the air, while others will help recreate the musical sets as they were played during the approximate years of 1976 to 1984, considered by most to be the best years of the station.

Unfortunately, not everyone will be able to attend. Jim Ladd, Denise Westwood, Cynthia Fox, and Terry Gladstone, for example, all work for rival KLOS, and I sincerely doubt that KLOS will let them off to promote another station ... even if it is a salute.

That being said, July 10th should be a fun day of radio for fans of the once mighty station. Might be a good day to take off work. Maybe, just maybe, we can get Dr. Demento to do a shift.


Even though “Paraquat” Kelley’s name is taken from the name of a chemical used to destroy marijuana plants in the 1980s, and that Kelly used to run stories on KMET partly as a warning to users to be careful of possibly tainted plants, Kelley himself has never touched the drug. Or so I read in an interview once.

Star Struck

KFI morning man Bill Handel received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame last Friday, and in the tradition started by the late Honorary Mayor of Hollywood, Johnny Grant, June 12th was declared Bill Handel Day.

“Why are we giving this man a star when there are so many other deserving people?” asked Handel Show team member Rich Marotta as he was roasting his friend. “Mother Love never got a star, Vic the Brick doesn’t have a star ... so why are we giving Bill Handel a star?”

I can take that one. Because his show is pretty damn good, and has helped propel the station to its status as one of the highest-rated stations in town, and one of the highest-rated -- if not the highest-rated -- talk station in America.

Not bad for an attorney who got his radio start giving out what Handel jokes is “bad legal advice” on his weekend Handel on the Law program. His legal expertise is in surrogate parenthood.


One of the best oldies radio stations around isn’t even on the radio., programmed by legendary programmer Rich Brother Robbin, covers a huge era and features a playlist unlike anything you’ve heard on the air in years. Check it out, and consider making a donation to help keep this resource on the net.


Copyright © 2009 Richard Wagoner and Los Angeles Newspaper Group.

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