KDWB-FM 101.3 Minneapolis MN Blueberry Bill 1978

This may be one of the rarest and most unusual KDWB airchecks of the late 1970s. Immediately following Casey Kasem’s “American Top 40” (which aired each Sunday from 7-10PM), KDWB would split the AM and FM signals. This in itself was a rare occurance. I believe this was the only time that Doubleday split the simulcast during the “FM 101 and AM 63” era of September, 1976 to September, 1979. Notice the ID given is for the AM station. The board operator messed this up since the program was definitely being broadcast on the FM signal only.

“Blueberry Bill” claimed to broadcast from a ballroom. The music he played was considered “retro” at the time: classic hits from the big band era. A radical departure in programming for sure. You’ll also notice some slight static in the signal as Bill speaks. I’m guessing a Marti or similar remote pickup system was being used to relay the broadcast from the ballroom to the KDWB studios (?) I lived only a few miles from KDWB-FM’s transmitter in Eagan, so their signal was always full-scale and solid at my location.

If anyone knows more about this show, please share with the class. I was a devout listener of American Top 40, so I’d hear it come on each week after Casey had finished the countdown. Other than that, I know very little about this late Sunday night feature. I just happened to catch this on tape since I was recording AT40. When it ended, I just let the cassette roll until the tape ran out a few minutes later. (You can hear the tape go into the leader at the end of this aircheck.)

This was recorded from my home in Apple Valley, Minnesota. Equipment used was a Sears AM/FM/cassette monaural portable unit and a Realistic Concertape C-60. Nothing fancy, but the recording somehow managed to survive for nearly 38 years!


6 thoughts on “KDWB-FM 101.3 Minneapolis MN Blueberry Bill 1978

  1. Pearl

    I know only a little bit. I know Blueberry Bill is my dad. His real name is Bill Hood and now he does bluegrass and folk under the rearranged moniker from “Blueberry Bill”: Billey R Rubble. He’s a Minnesotan bluegrass man but I came way after his radio era so I don’t know that much. It’s really cool to hear this recording, it’s the only one I’ve heard of my dad’s show!

  2. Drew Post author

    Hi Pearl,

    Sorry about taking so long to get back to you. This is the only recording I have of your dad. As I mentioned, I snagged it totally by accident, waiting for my cassette to run out after I had finished recording ‘American Top 40.’ Do you happen to know how long he did the show on KDWB-FM? I seem to remember hearing it for about a year or so. By 1979, Jim Ladd’s syndicated show “Innerview” was following Casey Kasem @ 11:00PM on Sunday nights.

  3. billey

    Drew, Thanks for tuning in…Pearl is my girl so probably I’m the guy to describe The Blueberry Bill Hour which ran the last hour of the week from 1974 to ’79. There wasn’t any script or format, and no Big Bands except The Wolverines once or twice. The shows were recorded in several studios around the Twin Towns on two tapes and simulcast on KD. A partial list of some guests over 250 shows is at http://www.dotm.biz. The music oriented towards creative musicians around in the ’70’s. It was a helluva lot of fun. It was the ’70’s you know, near as I remember,
    billey r rubble

  4. Jackie Belle

    Blueberry Bill still makes my heart thrill and stand still. He was my guitar teacher back then and I sure am pleased to hear him on the radio. He is a wonderful guy and a great father too. Here’s to Blue…

  5. Drew Post author


    Thanks so much for stopping by and filling us in. You too, Pearl! As I mentioned, I was only 13-14 years old at the time. Not quite old enough to appreciate the music you were playing. But I caught “The Blueberry Bill Hour” on KDWB since it aired immediately after Casey Kasem’s “American Top 40.” Because of this, I’m guessing there were a lot of kids my age who caught your show.. Especially during the summer months when we didn’t have to get up and go to school in the morning.

    Do you happen to remember if you were on both the AM and FM, or FM only? I’m thinking FM only, since a recorded ID would air directly after the AT40 “Shuckatoom” theme faded out. The ID only mentioned “KDWB-FM, Richfield.” But I couldn’t hear 630AM at night from Apple Valley, so I’m not certain of this.

    If I remember correctly, your show on KDWB ended in late 1979. It was replaced by Jim Ladd’s syndicated “Innerview” program.

  6. Billey R Rubble

    Drew, The Blueberry Bill Hour ran from June, 1974 to June, ’79. In the early years the program was simulcast (on separate tapes) both AM and FM. Those signals went out fom the tower on Radio Drive in Woodbury. You may hav e been tuned to 630 from Richfield, a much lower signal, than 101.3, or perhapsd the relay was weak where you lived. The KDWB engineer was Gary Narducci for several years. Later the show was engineered by Steve Weiss at Creation Sound. And sometimes I taped the shows myself in my studio in Minneapolis. It sure was fun. Thanks for the clip.

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