In the 1970s, nearly every Top 40 station counted down the previous year’s top songs on New Years Eve. Many ran American Top 40’s excellent year end show with Casey Kasem. Some stations produced their own countdowns. KDWB did both. AT40 ran on Sunday evenings. But KDWB’s live and local “Top 101 of 1976” survey aired on the actual date of December 31st, 1976.
This recording is especially rare since it was made using the FM stereo signal. KDWB had acquired their FM just 3 months earlier. Doubleday (parent company) purchased the old “U-100” FM facilities from Fairchild. KDWB was now simulcast on 101.3FM as well as their original frequency of 630AM. At the time, KDWB was the only Twin Cities Top 40 outlet to broadcast in FM stereo. Hence, the constant on air mention of “Stereo KDWB” and “All New KDWB.”
“Smokin’ Joe” Hager kicked things off at 6PM. Prior to the beginning of the countdown, he played the #1 songs of each year, 1964-76. Later, we’ll hear additional segments with Joe and also with Brian “The Cosmic” Phoenix who held down KDWB’s 9-Midnight shift in those days.
I originally recorded this on 8-track. Fortunately, I used Columbia 80 minute premium cartridges which held up amazingly well over the years. Normally when “rescuing” old 8-tracks and transferring them to digital media, both the pressure pads and the sensing tape need to be replaced. The glue dries up on the tape while the pads become “crumbly” and disintegrate. These Columbia cartridges had no such issues after more than 3 decades of storage. Reception and recording was obtained using my father’s Miida AM/FM/Phono/8-track recorder system. The transfer to digital was made using my vintage Marantz Superscope 8 track recording deck and Tascam CDRW4U CD recorder. These two components were connected directly using Monster Cable Interlinks. I think you’ll agree, the audio quality is very good for a recording of this era. Especially one which originated on an 8 track!
Smokin_Joe_KDWB_FM_Dec_31_1976_1 (Part 1 – #1 songs 1964-72)
Smokin_Joe_KDWB_FM_Dec_31_1976_2 (Part 2 – #1 songs 1973-75, Top 101 of 1976 #101-97.)