KTCR-AM 690 Minneapolis MN Mike Knight 1973

In 1973, KTCR was *the* country station in Minneapolis/St. Paul.  Both the AM and FM stations were country, but it was not a simulcast.  The stations weren’t even in the same building.  KTCR-AM was located on Winnetka Avenue in New Hope while KTCR-FM was on Minnehaha Avenue in South Minneapolis.

Since 690 is a Canadian/Mexican clear channel, KTCR-AM had to sign off at sunset.  They were also limited to just 500 watts, mainly due to close spacing with KUSD-AM (also on 690) in Vermillion, SD.  Their signal was not very strong at my location in Apple Valley, as you will hear. 

Being just 8 years old, I had not yet learned the cardinal rule of airchecking stations: “Roll tape at ALL times, or else you WILL miss something good!”  I was a bit late at getting the recorder on here, so the intro is clipped.  But you will hear Mike Knight instruct listeners to tune to 50,000 watt KTCR-FM at 97.1 Megahertz until KTCR-AM returns to the air tomorrow morning.  Only one small problem: most people did not have FM radios back then.  If they did, they would likely be listening to the FM station in the first place!  This was back in the days when stations actually took pride in their professionalism, including the sign off.  Now, daytime stations are routinely just shut off with no announcement whatsoever.  The carrier is simply cut, often in the middle of programming. 

This recording was made with my trusty ‘ol Spartan/Atlantic unit with built-in AM radio.  The ever-present Audio Magnetics “bag” cassette was also used.


5 thoughts on “KTCR-AM 690 Minneapolis MN Mike Knight 1973

  1. Tom


    I caught a typo: “Only problem was, most people did not have AM radios back then. If they did, they would likely be listening to the FM station in the first place!”

    Why would someone without an AM radio be listing to an AM station? 🙂

    I figured you meant: “Only problem was, most people did not have FM radios back then. If they did, they would likely be listening to the FM station in the first place!”


  2. Drew

    Hi Dan,

    Good catch! I try to proofread these before posting, but this is what happens when I’m in a hurry sometimes. If you see any others, please let me know.

    Thanks again,


  3. Debbie Bradley

    Can you find anything on my dad (Robert “Bob” Bradley) ? He worked for WLOL, WPBC and also KTCR.
    Thanks in advance for your consideration.

  4. Drew Post author

    Hi Debbie,

    Glad to help. Do you happen to know which years your dad worked at each station?


  5. Alex Kije

    Glad to see this outstanding writeup on KTCR! Thank You! I recall KTCR-AM with their studio and towers in Crystal. Can still drive by and see the towers. I recall Jerry Cunning, who was PD at KEVE, saying he was on his way to be PD KTCR. Indeed, he left KEVE, later KQRS, in 1964. I recall KTCR DJs Texas Bill Strength, Mike Knight, Mike Cunningham, Jim Hubbard and Rick Mason. I knew Jim Hubbard pretty well when he was working at the KTCR-FM site. The story on KTCR-FM was that it was previously KWFM, a classical music station, which was located in an electronics trade school building in south Minneapolis. Meryl Carlson, the GM for KWFM, exited to WLOL-FM, which also programmed classical music. I was pretty well immersed in radio at the time and have many fond memories of the people and the stations. It is a very tough business even if you are at the top of the ratings. I still love radio although I’m into other media now. My “Alex Kije” is a pen name now.

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