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C.R.M. Audio Section
Audio clips of classic Chicago radio!
(And sometimes, even classic Chicago TV audio...)
Airchecks, funny bits, vintage moments, songs, jingles, rarities, and so much more!

CHECK BACK OFTEN! New audio clips will be added approximately once each week.

Please note: The audio quality has been improved as much as possible, but overall quality will vary from recording to recording. Some older recordings may contain weaker audio, minor tape hiss, or even vinyl record snaps & pops.

Chicagoland Radio & Media makes no ownership or copyright claims on any of the audio recordings below. Recordings are posted here for entertainment, historical, and educational purposes only.

Do you have some classic Chicago-related audio that you would like to share with others here? Please email and let us know!

WLS-AM 1960s Weather Jingles

With weather reports being vital this time of year, here are a pair of classic WLS-AM weather jingles. These are quick melodies that were played on WLS-AM right before the day's temperatures and forecast were given out on the air. The first is a weekend weather jingle from the early 1960s, sung by the Anita Kerr singers. The second is a weekday weather forecast jingle from a few years later.

WLS-AM Weekend Weather jingle (Running time: 0:35)

WLS-AM Radar Weather Eye jingle (Running time: 0:03)

John Charleston aircheck, WJMK-FM 1/31/85

John Charleston spent 13 years (1978-1991) with former Chicago Oldies station WJMK-FM, back when the station was known as Magic 104, Oldies 104.3, and Magic 104.3. This audio clip is an aircheck of Charleston's that comes from 31 years ago today -- January 31, 1985. (Running time: 4:08)

92KissFM Flips To Energy 92.7 & 5 - 01/26/01

In 1998, a CHR station owned by Big City Radio appeared in the Chicago suburbs on stations WKIE-FM and WKIF-FM, called 92.7 Kiss FM. The following year, the same station was simulcast on WDEK-FM on 92.5, and the station's name was changed to the shorter 92KissFM. In 2001, Clear Channel's Chicago station WUBT-FM changed call letters to WKSC-FM and flipped formats to CHR using the branding of Kiss 103.5. Clear Channel's attorneys then informed Big City Radio they had to stop using the "Kiss" branding or face an expensive legal battle. This caused the WKIE-FM/WKIF-FM/WDEK-FM tri-cast to change names and formats. On January 26, 2001, 92KissFM flipped to the all-dance format branded as Energy 92.7 & 5. The following clip is the audio of the format flip. Hear on this clip the final song played on 92KissFM, Pearl Jam's "Last Kiss," followed by imaging promoting the new format and the dance track "The Launch" by DJ Jean. (Running time 2:42)

Dean Richards talks with Eddie Schwartz - WGN-AM, 01/22/06

Ten years ago today, WGN-AM weekend host Dean Richards had a long talk with Chicago radio legend Eddie "Chicago Ed" Schwartz. At that time, Schwartz was not working and trying hard to recover from various ailments, including kidney (renal) failure. Richards spent approximately an hour talking with Schwartz about his long career in Chicago radio. Fans were able to call in and speak with Schwartz, as well. Sadly, Schwartz never was able to return to hosting his own radio show and he passed away from his health woes in February 2009. Here now is the majority of the Richards/Schwartz program from WGN-AM that aired on January 22, 2006.
(Running time: 38:07)

Studs Terkel interviews Muhammad Ali - WFMT 11/26/75

As reported in an article on this website earlier today, Chicago media legend Studs Terkel will have his audio work preserved and made accessible via a free online archive, thanks to an ambitious initiative spearheaded by the Chicago History Museum and the Chicago-based WFMT Radio Network. The new Studs Terkel Radio Archive will seek to preserve the work and legacy of Terkel. The WFMT Radio Network has partnered with the Chicago History Museum to create this massive archive, which will ultimately showcase over 5,600 interviews and stories (a total of over 9,000 hours) from Terkel's pioneering daily radio show, which aired on WFMT-FM from 1952 to 1997. A crowdfundng campaign is hoping to raise at least $75,000, with the money raised being used to support the audio archiving, transcription, and uploading of 1,000 of Terkel's most notable interviews, which were originally recorded on reel-to-reel tapes. These interviews have been largely inaccessible to the public until now. It will bring the total number of interviews available online to over 1,400, spanning more than 40 topics, including civil rights, labor rights, literature, and music. Ultimately, the online archiving initiative will bring all of Terkel's WFMT-FM radio programs to the Internet. Here now, courtesy of the Chicago History Museum and the WFMT Radio Network, is one such recording by the great Studs Terkel. It comes from November 26, 1975 and features the host talking with arguably the best athlete of all time, Muhammad Ali. In it, Ali talks about his childhood, what life was like in his hometown, and about his autobiography "The Greatest: My Own Story." (Running time: 56:27)

Steve Dahl & Bruce Wolf's Sports Phone Sex - WMVP-AM January 1995

In late 1993, WLUP-AM became sports talk station WMVP-AM. A few months later, that station teamed up two of Chicago's biggest and best radio talk talents together, creating the Steve Dahl & Bruce Wolf morning show. Wolf, then primarily known for his comedic sports updates from other shows and stations, would sometimes play around with his sports updates on WMVP-AM. Instead of doing them as himself, he would pretend to dial up "Sports Phone" and let that automated system do the report in a robotic and comedic style (done by Wolf using a different voice). On one morning in January 1995, they went to the "Sports Phone," but instead accidentally dialed up the sports phone sex line. WMVP-AM morning news anchor Laura Witek read the sports updates, which got quite a "rise" out of the show's hosts, as well as most of the station's staff and listeners. Here is that hilarious bit... (Running time: 3:13)

Barney Pip aircheck - WCFL-AM December 30/31, 1968

This aircheck comes from 47 years ago this very night. It features WCFL-AM's late night DJ Barney Pip, the man with the cartoon-like voice and an abundance of energy. Pip (born Barney Pippenger) worked at WCFL and in Chicago radio from 1967-1970, before hopping around in numerous other markets. He passed away in a horrific one-car auto accident in June 1994. This aircheck shows Pip working in Chicago and at the height of his radio skills, goofing around with songs. Pip's shift on this audio clip started late on December 30th and went into the early morning of December 31st in 1968. Also featured on this aircheck is a news report from WCFL's John McClaren. (Running time: 12:06)

WJPC's 'Christmas Delight' Song w/Tom Joyner & More (1979)

In December 1979, Chicago soul station WJPC-AM released a free 45 RPM single for its fans. Both sides of the single contained the same song, which was "Christmas Delight." The song featured all of WJPC's biggest personalities singing and rapping holiday greetings for their listeners. The artist listed on this record is billed as "The J-P-C Gang." Heard on "Christmas Delight" are Tom Joyner, La Donna Tittle, BB D'Banana, Richard Pegue, Janis Gordon, and Dianne Thompson. The raps on "Christmas Delight" were written and produced by Terry "Casper" Marshall. The song is the WJPC DJs' version of "Rapper's Delight" by Sugarhill Gang, with a sample of "Good Times" by Chic. The following year, WJPC-AM released an updated version of the same song called "Christmas Delight 80" with the same singers, plus two additional voices. That two-sided single had a regular version and an extended version. The audio that is included below is only the original 1979 version of the song. (Running time: 3:19)

WNUA's 'Spirit Of Christmas" Broadcast 12/24/98

In 1998, WNUA-FM, then Chicago's Smooth Jazz/Smooth Rock radio station, did as most radio stations do and gave their staff Christmas Eve and Christmas off. In place of its regular programming, WNUA-FM ran an 18-hour, commercial-free block of music called "Spirit of Christmas -- Past, Present, and Future." This programming consisted of Christmas music from Smooth Jazz, Jazz, and New Age artists, combined with some instrumental Christmas music from many decades ago and some older mellow vocal standards. Approximately every 8-12 minutes, various WNUA pre-recorded imaging and voices would be heard. This includes the station's famous call letter jingle as played by Christmas bells, holiday greetings from management and staffers, and greetings from small children of station employees. Additionally, played around once per hour were segments called "A Christmas Moment from WNUA," a spoken word piece which consisted of classic holiday thoughts and/or poetry. The following audio clip comes from two hours of programming from Christmas Eve 1998 on WNUA-FM, with most of the holiday tunes edited out, leaving only the station's personal additions to the night's music programming. (Running time: 7:49)

Mike Nowak's 'It's A Wonderful Slice Of It's A Wonderful Life' - WGN-AM 12/24/99

Back in the late 1980s, Chicago radio host Mike Nowak thought it would be fun to hear the classic 1946 holiday film "It's A Wonderful Life" on the radio. This was when the film was still in the public domain and no fees would have to be paid for airing it. However, without the visuals, it seemed unlikely that any radio listener would sit through the 130 minute production. What Nowak did was to take the key audio parts of the iconic film and edit it all down to just over 10 minutes. He called it "It's A Wonderful Slice Of It's A Wonderful Life." Nowak's edited "It's A Wonderful Life" audio was a huge hit with the WGN Radio listeners each December. However, by the mid 1990s, Republic was able to once again reclaim the copyrights to the public domain film and its audio, which meant permission and fees needed to be obtained in order to play it on the radio.

In the meantime, Nowak, a local actor as well as radio host, took his edited audio and created a stage script. Thinking the audio was a fun hit, performing it live would be even more fun. From that script, he would perform "It's A Wonderful Slice" live on stage, both solo and with his actress friend Kathryn Gallagher, with each rapidly changing voices, hats, props, and lines, and cracking up audiences.

Unable to play his film's audio on the radio, he decided to bring his stage version of it to the airwaves, which again would be difficult without the visuals. Since audiences could not see the changing of hats and the facial expressions, Nowak decided he would go for speed, attempting to perform the bit in under 10 minutes. He began performing "It's A Wonderful Slice Of It's A Wonderful Life" live on WGN-AM in 1999. He has repeated this task many years since then on WGN-AM and WCPT-AM.

This audio clip is Nowak and Gallagher's performance of "It's A Wonderful Slice Of It's A Wonderful Life" as heard on WGN-AM on December 24, 1999. (Running time: 12:08)

Rich Renik's Christmas Stories (1979)

Rich Renik has worked as a radio personality in the Chicago market since 1970 at such stations as WXFM-FM, WDHF-FM, WMAQ-AM (for 13 years), the Chicago-based Satellite Music Network, WUSN-FM (for 13 years), and at WCCQ-FM, where he has been since 2003 and will continue to be heard each weekend. Additionally, he hosted the nationally syndicated "Country Flashback" show from 1994-2001. In 1979, Renik recorded a two-track single for charity, called "Yes, Virginia, There Is A Santa Claus." The A-side of that single had Renik reading the famous 1897 New York Times editorial defending the spirit of Christmas. The single's B-side featured his reading of Clement Clarke Moore's 1823 poem "The Night Before Christmas." Both readings feature background music by organist Frank Pellico. The single was remastered and re-released on CD in December 2007. The links below feature those two tracks recorded in 1979 with Renik's voice.

Rich Renik - "Yes, Virginia, There Is A Santa Claus" (Running time: 3:31)

Rich Renik - "The Night Before Christmas" (Running time: 3:27)

Eddie Schwartz Receives WLUP Christmas Party Calls - December 1993

In December 1993, WLUP-FM and WLUP-AM (then owned by Evergreen Media) held their annual holiday party for the stations' staffers. Not everybody was at the party, as nighttime host "Chicago Ed" Eddie Schwartz was on the air and taking phone calls. Some of the calls coming in weren't from casual listeners, but rather from many of his funny co-workers at his station... who had been drinking... possibly heavily. Among those calling into Schwartz's show to harass him (using various voices) included Kevin Matthews, Jonathon Brandmeier, Garry Meier, and even the station's boss Larry Wert. The following is compilation of the many calls to Schwartz's show that night from The Loop holiday party. (Running time: 11:28)

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