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Airwaves: May 6, 2011


Former local personalities Ted Quillin and Dave Michaels have passed away.

Quillin was one of the original personalities on Chuck Blore’s “Color Radio” KFWB in 1958. Many may also remember him from the original KRLA, KEZY, KFI, and XPRS. He had been living in Las Vegas, but over the past few years had seen declining health.

Quillin is credited with being the first DJ in Los Angeles to play a song by Ritchie Valens, “Come On Let’s Go.” In the movie La Bamba, Quillin was played by Rick Dees. He passed away the morning of April 20th at the age of 81.

Michaels, heard during the 1970s and ‘80s on the original KDAY, KEZY, KUTE, KLAC, KIQQ, KRTH and KIIS-FM, was most recently the programmer of Citadel Media’s syndicated Classic Hits format, based out of Dallas, Texas. He also passed away April 20th at the age of 60 after a long battle with cancer.

Letter Bag

Q: “Richard, I enjoy the information you provide on radio programming so please, keep up the good work. I agree that John and Ken are getting tiresome and I fear that someday they will taint a criminal case to the point that a bad guy walks.

“I used to listen to Handel religiously but he is also getting old. To me Hoffman is the real genius and I still don't know what qualifies Marotta as a political analyst. Maybe he is auditioning to replace Keith Olberman! Rich should stick to sports where I have total respect for him. On "Handel on the Law" Bill seems to be preoccupied with where a person is from. He will waste time questioning people on their ethnicity rather than getting to the question. 

“I know this will not change him but it feels good to let someone know why I no longer listen to him. Someday I would like to see Tim Conway Jr. take over the morning show! Thanks for letting me vent a little.” -- Bill, Alta Loma 

A: I’m not sure Tim would want to do mornings, but it is an interesting idea for when Handel decides to move on, which in my estimation will be ... never.

Q: “Well ... How much did Saul (Levine) pay you for that blatant “free” ad on 4-1-2011? If I want to listen to Mozart et al, I turn to the USC station. Not only did good old Saul put a lot of well informed, entertaining people out of work, he also lost a lot of faithful listeners. I can only hope he loses his shirt with his new format, ‘cause so many of us on a limited budget do not have computers handy and cannot afford a HD radio in order to enjoy the music of our youth that brought us so much pleasure. 

“I was so delighted to find KGIL Retro when it was first aired, and now feel bereft. Again, we have lost so much wonderful music and  many artists. So, shame on both of you.  You for your obviously slanted, partisan  column, and Saul for having more money than sense.” -- Jeanne Lyons, email.

A: According to Levine, the Retro format was making no money and there is a call for an alternative to KUSC’s approach. He tells me that so far the support from the classical community, especially the smaller groups and promoters, has been amazing. But the main point to keep in mind: Retro IS still around, as the next letter states; you just have to have an HD radio, an smart phone or iPod Touch, or a computer.

Q: “Please tell Saul Levine thanks for not killing Retro 1260 and just moving it to 105.1-3 HD Radio. Even though he said that Retro 1260 was poor in the ratings ... It is rated high at my household. And my wife is happy to get another classical station....” -- Mike Reynolds, Redondo Beach

A: If more owners would program the HD Radio signals like Levine does, more HD radios would be sold. And Retro sounds fabulous in HD.

Quick note: If you haven’t received a reply to any letter or email you sent recently, I am working on clearing out my inbox ... I do try to answer each letter personally.


Copyright © 2011 Richard Wagoner and Los Angeles Newspaper Group.

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