The History of WBZ NewsRadio: The 1960s


The Greatest Air Show On Earth (Credit: WBZ Archive Photo)

The Greatest Air Show On Earth (Credit: WBZ Archive Photo)

Bruce Bradley (Credit: WBZ Archive Photo)

Bruce Bradley (Credit: WBZ Archive Photo)

1960: Bruce Bradley joins WBZ, when the station is still playing middle of the road pop music. Gradually, as the music becomes more top 40, “Juicie Brucie” Bradley’s nighttime show becomes extremely popular.

1961: It’s Carl DeSuze’s 20th year with ‘BZ! He is given a big party and does a recreation of how his show from the 1940s used to sound.

April 1961: In its annual poll, Radio-TV Mirror Magazine names WBZ’s “The Newsmakers” as “Best News Program.”

June 17, 1962: Westinghouse attempts to buy KFWB but the deal falls through and Westinghouse instead purchases WINS in New York. (WINS will later become the nation’s first all-news radio station).

July 1962: Westinghouse announces it is ending its operation of Springfield’s WBZA.

September 30th, 1963: Bob Kennedy, who will do talk and public affairs, joins WBZ. His award-winning show, called “Contact,” made its debut on September 30th, 1963 and featured a wide range of celebrities – from politicians to authors to the day’s biggest newsmakers. The call-in number is Algonquin 4-5678. “Contact” remains on the air during most of the decade.

Jefferson Kaye (Credit: WBZ Archive Photo)

Jefferson Kaye (Credit: WBZ Archive Photo)

1964: The WBZ air staff is Carl DeSuze in the morning, followed at 9:30 by Dave Maynard, then Jay Dunn at 12:30, Jefferson Kaye at 3:30 and, after a news and information block at 6pm, Contact then, at 8:05, Bruce Bradley. Overnight is Dick Summer. During the folk music craze, Jefferson Kaye does a popular Sunday night show called “Hootenanny.”

Gary Lapierre (Credit: WBZ Archive Photo)

Gary Lapierre (Credit: WBZ Archive Photo)

September 1964: Gary LaPierre joins the news staff, with his first assignment to spend 24 hours with The Beatles.

November 9, 1965: The Northeast Blackout plunges the region into darkness. Only people who have transistor radios are able to tune in to WBZ.

1966: Gil Santos begins doing play-by-play of the Patriots football games.

Summer 1966: Bruce Bradley is broadcasting live in the Sundeck Studio from Paragon Park at Nantasket Beach.

August 18, 1966: The Beatles perform live at Suffolk Downs. Bruce Bradley introduces the show, and in the audience is then 13-year-old Joe Kennedy.

1968: Bruce Bradley leaves WBZ (but will be back…)

January 1969: WBZ does a series on racial problems in Boston. Newsweek Magazine does an article praising the series.

January 1969: WBZ gets the right to broadcast Boston Bruins hockey, which had been on another station. Veteran announcer Fred Cusick is chosen to do play-by-play.

July 1969: Guy Mainella’s sports-talk show “Calling All Sports” debuts.

1969: Larry Glick promotes Sunkist Lemonade as the “Commander” of the late night airwaves.

Larry Glick Promotes Sunkist Lemonade (Credit: WBZ Archive Photo)

Larry Glick Promotes Sunkist Lemonade (Credit: WBZ Archive Photo)