Philadelphia Radio Archives

History of Philadelphia radio station 105.3 WDAS

WDAS History

WDAS-FM went on the air in 1959 as the sister station to 1480 AM owned by Max Leon. The varied format included combinations of Jazz and Classical music, with occasional simulcasting of WDAS-AM. Some of the early personalities on WDAS-FM included Del Shields and his “Modern Music” show, Kal Rudman playing folk music, and Chris Albertson with tapes of “rarely recorded New Orleans artists.”1

Progressive Rock

WDAS Underground In the spring of 1968, the station switched to a progressive rock format under the direction of Hy Lit, who had just left a long stint at WIBG. Known as the “Hyski Underground,” the station played mainly album cuts and included DJs Michael Tearson, Ed Sciaky, Gene Shay, Larry Magid, T. Morgan, Wayne Joel, Steve Marko, Rod Carson and the owner’s son, Steve Leon, who called himself “My Father’s Son” on the air.

Rival WMMR-FM switched to a progressive format sometime thereafter and started pulling in listeners from WDAS. Eventually, the station’s programming was turned over to Steve Leon by his father Max with the promise of complete freedom of speech and music. The promise did not last long. On March 5, 1971, the FCC (supposedly under the influence of the Nixon administration) issued a public notice that warned broadcasters against playing songs “tending to promote or glorify the use of illegal drugs.”2

Max Leon and his son-in-law, GM Robert Klein ordered all “dope songs” off the station. 28 year-old Steve fought against this ruling, and in an infamous altercation was taken off the air and fired by his brother-in-law while playing Arlo Guthrie’s song about marijuana “Comin’ Into Los Angeles.” The next day, the station launched a “progressive soul” format.3

Inventing A Format

This format evolved into the Urban Contemporary format for which the station is still widely known today. The playlist included R&B, soul and funk, with songs that became classics of the genre. The success of this format at WDAS coincided with the popularity of the “Philadelphia Sound” made famous by Philadelphia International Records with artists such as Teddy Pendergrass, Patti LaBelle, The O’Jays and the Sylistics. As disco and rap became popular, they too were added to the playlist.

In 1979, WDAS was sold to the black-owned Unity Broadcasting Network for $5 million. By 1982, the station found itself in competition with Power 99 (WUSL), and moved even further towards the Urban Adult Contemporary format, eliminating rap and disco from their playlist. The station also strengthened its community involvement and public affairs programming aimed at the African American community. Despite these efforts, WUSL continued to win the urban ratings race. In 1989, WDAS hired Kernie Anderson, who improved the station’s ratings by targeting a somewhat older demographic (the parents of the teens who listened to Power 99) with lots of ballads and 70s and 80s hits from artists like Earth Wind & Fire and Marvin Gaye.

In 1994, WDAS was sold to Beasley Broadcasting and moved into a new building on City Avenue in Bala Cynwyd. In 1996, it was sold to Evergreen Media for $103 million. After a series of mergers, WDAS is now owned by iHeartMedia (formerly Clear Channel Communications), and continues with the urban adult contemporary format as one of Philadelphia’s legendary radio stations.

Joseph “Butterball” Tamburro

Joe Tamburro has been an integral part of Philadelphia radio since he landed a sales job at WDAS in 1964. He quickly became a DJ at the station where he put his lifelong love of soul music and R&B to work. In an industry not known for longevity, Tamburro managed to hold the Program Director’s title at WDAS for over 30 years. In May 2001, he was named WDAS VP and General Manager. He has received numerous awards in the music and radio industry for his contributions to both the business and the community.4 Joe Tamburro died in 2012 at the age of 70.

Unity Day

WDAS held the first Unity day in 1978 on the Belmont Plateau. This keystone Philadelphia event celebrates family values, pride, multiculturalism and empowerment with music, food, games and activities. The first event drew 20,000 but since then attendance has grown into the hundreds of thousands. The venue was later moved to the Benjamin Franklin Parkway where the 30th annual event was held on August 23 – 24, 2008. In June, 2009, Clear Channel Communications, owners of WDAS, ceased to sponsor the event. “Unity Day on the Parkway, Inc.” a group of concerned citizens, is now the official sponsor of the event.


  • (1)Billboard Magazine, various issues, 1961 - 1968
  • (2)Sirius, R. U. Everybody Must Get Stoned , Citadel Press, 2009, p. 104
  • (3)Fong-Torres, Ben One Toke Behind the Line, Rolling Stone, 4/15/71
  • (4)Air Awards, 1997

Discuss WDAS

Comments? Corrections? Worked there? Please let us know!

1. Posted on Wednesday, January 20, 2010 by Joanne Thompson:
Love WDAS, Georgie Woods had an album called Georgie Woods and his Girls, i would love to have a copy can you tell me where i can purchase one i won it off of the radio thanks jt

2. Posted on Monday, March 29, 2010 by Ansel Coombs:
back in the mid seventies a band from Trinidad named Kalyan had a hit song on WDAS ,the name of the sound was disco reggae,could you please tell me the year and how long did the song stay at no 1 ? thanks.

3. Posted on Tuesday, March 30, 2010 by Kim Holloway:
Can you please tell me when talk show host Elbridge Holloway was on the air with WDAS AM. Thank you

4. Posted on Sunday, April 4, 2010 by Guy M. Johnson:
I would like to know where I can find old air checks from WDAS (60-70's)

5. Posted on Wednesday, April 28, 2010 by Liz Marshall:
Back in the '70 there was a song played regularly on the air. The lyrics spoke of GOD creating the world. It went something like "rised his hands and said, let there be sunshine, let there be peace, let there me happiness" What is the name of the song and who sang it.

6. Posted on Tuesday, May 11, 2010 by Victor Bains Marshall:
I would like to know where I can get "Butterball" airchecks from WDAS (mid to late '60's)

7. Posted on Tuesday, August 10, 2010 by Stephen Leon:
All I know is Jay Mark, Rod Carson, Mike Tearson, Gene Shay, Wayne Joel and I are still with us, Ed Sciaky passed away. God Bless President Barack Obama and the Democrats. Remember in November who put us into dodo and who is getting us out. Peace

8. Posted on Thursday, September 2, 2010 by Sherman Powell:
Could you please tell me if any of Butterball's yearly countdown of the 105 greatest oldies has ever been recorded to cd and if so how can I get a copy of them? I am especially interested in his countdowns from the 80's. Also, was the album "Love 1000" by Jimmy Bishop and Butterball ever put on cd. If so, how can I obtain a copy of it? Thank you.

9. Posted on Friday, September 3, 2010 by william t. smith:
what is the name of the background music tony brown has been playing since i was a teenager i love it i know it maybe by tsop.

10. Posted on Saturday, September 18, 2010 by Ken:
Who was the guy who made the last comments of the day and at the end of each comment he would end with " The key to the bible is built within"

11. Posted on Wednesday, September 22, 2010 by J. Scott:
I am looking for the correct title of a song sung by Chaka Chan with the words "I want you, Ineed you" in it. It is an up beat song i am looking for to use in my aerobics class. It is played almost every Sunday Night. Thank you!!

12. Posted on Monday, October 11, 2010 by hailey:
Do you have the history of former Djays, like The Bonney Prince Charlie& John Bandie{ Lord Fotlouroy}?

13. Posted on Thursday, October 28, 2010 by curtis brown:
Where can we get a vintage sound clip of the late Georgie Woods the man with the goods morning show Wake up Philadelphia from the late 70's playing to the tune: It's a beautiful morning? Georgie Woods the man with the goods telling you to drive to stay alive cause the life you save just might be your own.

14. Posted on Thursday, November 25, 2010 by sherri collins:
I would like to know where I can get a copy of Georgie Woods and his girls album from

15. Posted on Tuesday, January 25, 2011 by Sammy:
I live in Maryland near Washington DC but I listen to WDAS Sunday Night Dance Party everytime I travel home from Atlantic City NJ two to three times a month. PLEASE PROVIDE ME WITH A WAY OF OBTAINING BY BUYING OR DOWNLOADING THE EXTRAORDINARY REMIX OF THE SONG COOL JERK BY THE CAPITOLS. I brag to all of my friends in Maryland, Washington, DC and New York City about how great your remix of eth song Cool Jerk by the Capitols as an example of how great teh Sunday Night Dance Party really is but I have no way of proving my point. Please advise.

16. Posted on Tuesday, January 25, 2011 by Sammy:
I live in Maryland near Washington DC but I listen to WDAS Sunday Night Dance Party everytime I travel home from Atlantic City NJ two to three times a month. PLEASE PROVIDE ME WITH A WAY OF OBTAINING BY BUYING OR DOWNLOADING THE EXTRAORDINARY REMIX OF THE SONG COOL JERK BY THE CAPITOLS. I brag to all of my friends in Maryland, Washington, DC and New York City about how great your remix of eth song Cool Jerk by the Capitols as an example of how great teh Sunday Night Dance Party really is but I have no way of proving my point. Please advise.

17. Posted on Tuesday, February 1, 2011 by Monica (Lewis) Hodge:
I was born and raised in Philly. As a teen and young adult WDAS was the only station we listened to. I now tune in by way of the internet. I appreciate the internet connection because I am living in GA with no R&B station in the area. Please keep up the good work.

18. Posted on Sunday, March 13, 2011 by eric taylor:
dear mr.t.brown,could please e.mail me the name of the artist who wrote your theme background instrumental version of quite storm? no one know's but is familar of piece. i'm 54 and been trying to find out since i was 24.i'm serious Mr.Brown. I would appreciate that a great blessing... Eric

19. Posted on Wednesday, March 16, 2011 by Ann:
This is really out there but here goes!I am searching for a song played on the Thursday night/Quiet Storm/Love Songs/Tony Brown;circa 2006. I think the artist is the O'Jays.This period in 2006 was prior to Tony's leave when Patty Jackson was the fill in and asked listeners for their prayers for him and his family.He may have been ill it was never divulged.I have been searching for some time now without resolve.If the playlists of this period could be supplied I can continue my search,however any form of help would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance.

20. Posted on Wednesday, March 23, 2011 by steve west:
You can hear a small sample of WDAS 1973 on my stevations youtube channel. Labor Day weekend 1973

21. Posted on Sunday, March 27, 2011 by jonathan:
i have a copy of Georgie Woods & his Girls fab compilation

22. Posted on Saturday, April 9, 2011 by Herschell Redmond:
Does anyone know if there are any samples of the show Lord Fauntleroy(John Bandy)the "Lord of Rhyme" had when he was on the air? He was my favorite.

23. Posted on Saturday, April 9, 2011 by Herschell Redmond:
Is Jimmy Bishop still alive today?

24. Posted on Friday, June 24, 2011 by Jim Flagg:
In 1970 (or so) WDAS had an award winning commentator that had little one-minute comments on things. Does anybody know his name? He was just great! At that time in history WDAS ruled my world! It was exciting, edge of your seat theater that was so exciting and edgy you couldn't wait to turn it on. Some of the things that were said and played were so fun and unexpected. I believe it was My Father's Son (I think) once chinged a cash register when he heard Hy-Lit coming. You could feel thru the air waves the tension that must have been going on. Oh how I wish we had true radio art like that today. Does ANYBODY have any vintage clips from that period? I have a few tapes of late night WMMR from "71" and "72" that are just fantastic as well. Thank You WDAS for standing in with US!!!!!!!!!!!!

25. Posted on Saturday, August 13, 2011 by skip:
i used to dance on canteen 17 after school. please tell me where i can buy or see those tapes of myself and my fellow dancers. my wife would love to see those tapes. georgie woods was the sponsor. thanks

26. Posted on Thursday, August 25, 2011 by Gary:
10. Posted at 3:25 PM on 9/18/2010 by Ken: I remember commentaries by Mitch Gilbert. I worked at WDAS from 1977 to 1996 in the engineering dept. and one of my assignments was to record programs. For additional information about WDAS you can visit

27. Posted on Monday, August 29, 2011 by Paul Kanagie:
I'm looking for something played by Stepheon Leon about Nixon. I thought I heard it announced it was read my John Greenflag Williams, but it's been a long time. It was anti-Nixon, of course. I was hooked on My Fathers Son. Listened every night

28. Posted on Thursday, September 22, 2011 by Stephen Leon (My Father's Son):
The commentator was Mitch Gilbert, a publisher, freedom fighter, publisher of the Psycedelphia underground newspaper 1967/68 ish

29. Posted on Friday, May 25, 2012 by Theresa:
Why don't WDAS have a list of all their music they play on the radio especially the long and the remake versions of the 70's R&B music to look at and or to have available to listeners

30. Posted on Monday, August 6, 2012 by Kenny Gee:
THANKS for the old days, WDAS home of, woods-fauntleroy-butterball and many more. Kenny GEE

31. Posted on Wednesday, October 31, 2012 by SOLO MONT:

32. Posted on Sunday, January 6, 2013 by Kathy bell:
What is the background music played by Tony browns Sunday afternoon jazz brunch thats between his Introduction of songs. Please let me know!

33. Posted on Wednesday, February 20, 2013 by David:
re comment # 7: A year-and-a-half after you posted said comment, Stephen, not only do I say, "Amen to THAT!", but today marks the one-month anniversary of Barack Obama's second term as the President of the United States. As for Butterball (Butter, for short), passed away on July 27, 2012.

34. Posted on Sunday, April 21, 2013 by Danni:
Just want, to know if John Bandy aka (Lloyd Fauntleroy is still around. Love him ,as a teen going to Uptown theater in the 60's. Those were the good ole days.

35. Posted on Monday, August 26, 2013 by R. Mori:
I remember that night in '71 well. The record scratch, a night full of dead air followed the next day by a 10 minute cart tape full of odd sounds with an eerie voice alluding to "something new" looped over and over for a day or more. When they came back for real the DJ's were different but the music was rock and some funk, not too different from the old sound. R&B only came in as they phased out the rock over several months. Despite the gradual change, when the original DJ's moved to WMMR, so did the old audience. BTW: The DJ's claimed they walked out in protest over one fired DJ and the enforcing of the FCC "warning". WDAS said they were all fired. FYI: There never was any legal FCC anti-drug rule, just a threat. There is a more up to date version of this page at Wikipedia, but it has little more about this episode.

36. Posted on Monday, December 23, 2013 by Bill G:
I always remember the old classic jazz song that sounded like the guy was yodeling, and I cannot think of the name of that song. Someone help me please... i first started listening to it in the 70's but it's a timeless classic. You guys still play it.

37. Posted on Friday, January 10, 2014 by Anon:
TO #36: Leon Thomas (with Pharoah Sanders), "The Creator Has A Master Plan"--era of about 1970-1971.

38. Posted on Friday, January 10, 2014 by Anon:
What is the song title (and artist) which Tony Brown plays at his midnight Transition? What is "Brown In Space"?

39. Posted on Tuesday, January 14, 2014 by Kelli:
Opus 1 by Mondre then into Overture by Average White Band

40. Posted on Tuesday, June 10, 2014 by Ellis B Feaster:
I've posted some of my old WDAS-FM air checks on You Tube, including this one of Georgie Woods from over 30 years ago:

41. Posted on Sunday, June 29, 2014 by Shell William:
What is the name of the artist(s) who sang this song with the lyrics,: "Happy feelings are the only thoughts we know",or : "I can take you where you never thought you'd go, and nobody has to know"."Welcome to the carnival....". Who or what group sang this song? WDAS played this song frequently in the afternoons. In the 1980's.

42. Posted on Tuesday, July 1, 2014 by Mike:
The midnight "Transition" is a combination of songs that begins with the opening of "Leaving This Planet" by Charles Earland. It also incorporates a piece of The Brothers Johnson's "Rocket Countdown". It then moves into Mandré's "Interlude" with a voice overlay of the Genie's intro and Tony's monologue. It all ended with the activation of the "Soft Machine" and the beginning of Jermaine Jackson's "Castles Of Sand". The Mitch Gilbert editorials were usually backed by either MFSB - "My Mood" or Santana - "Tales Of Kilimanjaro". The editorials always ended with "The owners manual to the human being is built in."

43. Posted on Wednesday, February 11, 2015 by denny:
always loved hearing My Fathers Son and his intro tune, Third Stone From The Sun

44. Posted on Thursday, February 26, 2015 by BJ:
Like Liz Marshall #5 I too am looking to find out the name of the song, and the group that sang it, played on WDAS FM in the early to mid 70!s the chorus was He lifted up His hands and said, "Let there be Sunshine, let there be peace, let there be happiness, Let there be Love... I've been racking my brain for some time now. Female lead (I think)

45. Posted on Thursday, February 26, 2015 by BJ:
In addition to my previous comment & link to q.#5 Asking if anyone remembered this song, and group from the 70's . I heard this on Philadelphia, PA WDAS FM 105.3. All I could recollect of the song was: "He lifted up Hs hands and said... (Chorus repeat) Le-e-et there be Sunshi-i-ne, Le-e-et there be pe-e-eace, Le-e-et there be hap-pin-ess, Le-e-et there be Lo-ve... Thinking about the intro of EWF's "That's the way of the World" song without the horn lead, but sounds like a violin instead. With female vocal lead singing ye-e-e-e-e-e-e-a-h! toward the outro over the chorus repeat sung by the background which are male, and female, if this helps at all. A real soulful R&B slow groove with a message. Someone Out there Has to remember this song besides myself and (Liz Marshall Q.#5) Please help us to find this information? I would be very grateful for I cannot get this song and melody out of my head. Thank you kindly

46. Posted on Saturday, March 21, 2015 by Joseph Haskins:
I Remember the midnight transition in 1976 begining with Mandre's solar flight and fading into dexter wansels life on mars.correct me if im wrong

47. Posted on Saturday, March 21, 2015 by Joseph Haskins:
I Remember the midnight transition in 1976 begining with Mandre's solar flight and fading into dexter wansels life on mars.correct me if im wrong

48. Posted on Saturday, March 21, 2015 by Joseph Haskins:
back in the mid 70's did tony brown use theme from in the planets by Dexter Wansel and fade into solar flight by Mandre to begin Transition ?

49. Posted on Sunday, April 19, 2015 by Dr. Napoleon N. Vaughn:
Back in the day, 1968 to be exact. that year when my book, "Who's Who In Greater Philadelphia In The Negro Community" was published, "Lord Fauntleroy," alter ego of John Bandy, had a TV talk show, beyond his management role at WDAS-FM.that socked it to his guests. Perhaps he kindly took it easy on me, because of the book's subject and the fact we had also been Howard University graduates. His ploy and hook featured a strong yet fake British accent. On WDAS radio,some thought he was white.

50. Posted on Tuesday, April 28, 2015 by Kelly Lloyd:
Looking for information on Mitch Gilbert formerly of wdas

51. Posted on Sunday, May 10, 2015 by Charlene Squires:
I'm trying to find theme song from the 70s that was sampled from a Fred D.night- Iv been lonely. Everyone that I talk to think I imagining it but I remember hearing this song played as a little girl on your radio station. It just has different lyrics. Please help me to prove them wrong. Thank you

52. Posted on Tuesday, May 26, 2015 by Aaron:
Does anyone know the theme background song/beat for Patti Jackson's 411. It's very upeat, no lyrics just a beat/instrumental. Thanks.

53. Posted on Tuesday, July 28, 2015 by Michael Rogers:
I'm Looking For That Song With Song lyrics "He raised His hand And Said Let There Be Sunshine Let There Be Peace Let There Be Happiness played On Radio station In the 80's

54. Posted on Thursday, July 30, 2015 by ruby harrington:
What happen 2 K.Williams,Jocko,Geogie Woods, Sir Lancalot,John Bandy,Jimmy Bishop,Carl Helm,Harvey Holiday,Louis Williams.And the record shops that blew the music? Treegoobes,Stan The Man's, Kenny Gambles,and the 1 on 40th st.if i forgot any of the legends put it 2 my memory not my heart.WDAS has played nonstop in my home(24-7) 67 yrs not much less.Then the Ball came 2 call(Butterball).

55. Posted on Thursday, August 13, 2015 by Edd Banks:
Is there any cd of Butterball when he used to rap when he would DJ in the 60's it was cool.He should have been labeled the original rapper. Thank you in advance for your help in this matter

56. Posted on Wednesday, December 30, 2015 by Urban Radio Nation:
Some Alumni Day air checks are posted here: Also check out YouTube and the Ellis Feaster radio air checks plays. Butterball was not the original rapper. There was a very famous DJ in New York City at the time named Frankie Crocker. He was often imitated but never duplicated.

57. Posted on Monday, January 18, 2016 by Hugh Bayard:
Is there CDs of Mitch Gilbert commentary? Also Dr.Perry Johnson theme when he came on at 7pm.

58. Posted on Thursday, April 21, 2016 by Big Poppa Mink:
I started listening 2 Blk radio in the late fiftys (est 1952) as a teenager I would stand outside the uptown 4 four days of the 10 days the shows would appear fought off gangs the weather so I could C the future best. a lot of groups that R no longer 2gether just made me feel so so good hearin all thoes crooners on stage 4 $2.75c there are soo many groups & singers I have witnessed on stage man soo much joy. but my main reason 2 B there was Bcause of the radio djs and that's all I wanted 2 B in life watchin butter jimmy b listenin 2 ms williams soulfinger donnie brooks georgie,larry daily ,and I mean B4 there was FM radio I just wanted 2 B on the air somewhere someday. that itch was killin me and that itch got satisfided wit unity Broadcasting (honorable mention AJ Kemp) even though I didn"t make philly radio just the fact of hangin out back stage at the uptown just the fact I got 2 intro people in the music business as I got oleder it felt soo good. when the manhattan's were 5 members.when georgie wore hot pants on stage 2 the battle of the groups and all that the radio dj was rite there from lord Fauntleroy 2 dr perry johnson and like tums 4 the tummy U know I'm good 4 ya. I have so much vinyl since late 60's 2 85 B cause record day tues & thurs I would B rite there collectin the best BLK music on the planet. so shout out 2 WZEN-FM & KATZ-FM st louis mo and all those DJs shoulders I have stood on & all of U who will stand on my shoulders some day..... MAY GOD BLESS...!!!!

59. Posted on Saturday, May 7, 2016 by Marvin Travick:
Please advise how I may get access to Mitch Gilbert Guru Bawa CD's/taped commentary?

60. Posted on Tuesday, August 30, 2016 by Marvin Friedman:
"Too tall to get over, too wide to get around, I'm layin' down the fat sound in our town and I'm doin it pound by pound , I wanna get close to you baby closet than white on rice closet than coal on ice " Butterball .Lord Fauntleroy "The Engineer" Jocko with the Rocket Ship Show .What a time that was .You could tune in WIBG WFIL you could pick up WABC IN NYC and hear all the Stones, Beatles or Petula Clark you wanted , or switch to 'DAS and hear The Intruders Honey and The Bees and too many more local Philly artists that helped define the sound.What passes for radio today , right wing bigots , Urban Sound NPR.Almost no creativity , I'm not sure how much I would pay to have a day of my term years back

61. Posted on Thursday, September 8, 2016 by jerome:
1972-76 the apologetic line what was the theme song, song that that played while people apologize

62. Posted on Thursday, February 2, 2017 by Brad:
What was the name of the song, that Perry Johnson would play every night ,transitioning into 12am. His catch phrase was " gottch".

63. Posted on Wednesday, April 19, 2017 by Lawrence Austin:
In the early 80s Tony Brown would begin the "Extra Sensory Connection" with an instrumental that lead with a guitar and woodwind, and inserted a sax riff in the middle. Anyone possibly familiar with the name of this song? Thank you!

64. Posted on Wednesday, May 31, 2017 by Steve:
That song they can't remember is by caston and majors. Peace is the only everlasting joy.that's not the name of the song

65. Posted on Thursday, June 29, 2017 by Denise:
How can I get copies of wdas 60'70's Sunday night air show with butter ball

66. Posted on Monday, July 17, 2017 by Assante Southerland:
WDAS is the best R&B Station in Philly and do you know what I miss? I miss WDAS was worth listening to and I miss the Michael Baisden show. Unlike today the music and the radio for me and the people are listen to will never be the same. And I wish we can go back to the years when WDAS Plays good music. I wish the old WDAS could play good music again just like it used to be.

67. Posted on Sunday, August 6, 2017 by Eve:
What was the title/theme song of theLouise Williams Bishop Gospel Show during the 1960's?

68. Posted on Friday, August 18, 2017 by Joyce Gee:
Who on WDAS played" Searching "by Luther Vandross on Fridays at 7:00

69. Posted on Thursday, October 12, 2017 by Pam Stevens:
I grew up in philly and loved wdas. I have been trying desperately to get the name of the song louise williams played at the end of her show. Something along the lines of i've got a long dusty road ahead of me. Please let me know the name and artist.

70. Posted on Tuesday, October 17, 2017 by bob domanico:
Dear Tony, would love to know what the name of your talkover song is. Love your show. Thanks

71. Posted on Monday, October 30, 2017 by Nancy Huston:
I worked at WDAS-fm, was hired by Steve Leon (“My Father’s Son”). I did the news. It was a very hot time prior to the huge anti-war match on Washington of 1970. I worked mainly during Ed Sciaky’s show. As the building held both the AM and FM sides, Hy Lit was in and out, Georgie Woods, Butterball...and others. There were also Black Panthers there at times and they were not very friendly, I have to say. I had the amazing experience of having to call the Panthers in Chicago where they were penned down by cops in s building, that big shootout. I don’t know who I was on the phone with, but it was a steady stream of invective and gunshots. A number of people were killed. It was a really bizarre and violent recording and difficult to air because of the FCC and the profanity. This was a very exciting time to be part of that scene at my young age. I quit shortly before Steve Leon’s dad pulled the plug on his programming. Given today’s music, it’s almost quaint that he got into trouble for playing Arlo Guthrie’s “Coming into Los Angeles.” I will also say this about that time, a young female, I felt unsafe around some of the men there. I was asked to go into a sound booth once to record a commercial for some head shop or something - it was called the Purple Plum on Glensidr Ave., Glenside, Pa. While I was reading copy into the mic, the door opened behind me and someone put his hands on me. I was completely stunned and mortified as this guy was mauling me. I was so young and had no idea what to do but to keep pulling away and trying to get through the commercial so I could get out fast. I was very embarrassed, and left immediately. When I came in the next day, as I walked through the hall there were guys going by laughing and making comments - they’d all had fun listening to me get molested in the sound booth, that was obvious. I did quit very soon after that.

72. Posted on Wednesday, January 24, 2018 by David:
Re Comment # 55: The same can actually be said for Jocko Henderson-a deejay on WHAT as well as on WDAS-AM-whose career on either station preceded Butterball's career.

73. Posted on Wednesday, January 24, 2018 by David:
@Nancy Huston (comment # 71): THAT is a SHOCK! ESPECIALLY considering that you posted your comment (and, at the end thereof, described the ordeal that you went through) at a time when actresses, female singers etc. began to reveal practically en masse to the world that they had been sexually assaulted by movie executives or movie directors or TV talk show hosts. (AND NOW FORMER FEMALE U.S. OLYMPIC GYMNASTS ARE CRYING IN COURT NOT ONLY DESCRIBING THEIR BEING SEXUALLY ASSAULTED BY THEIR TEAM'S DOCTOR, but also calling him out on the darn proverbial carpet FOR SAID ACTIONS of his!) Forget about the Net being nonexistent, never mind hashtags-no less #Me Too-when you got molested while recording a commercial!

74. Posted on Wednesday, January 24, 2018 by David:
Re Comment # 55: The same can actually be said for Jocko Henderson-a deejay on WHAT as well as on WDAS-AM-whose career on either station preceded Butterball's career.

75. Posted on Monday, February 5, 2018 by jj bishop:
WDAS-FM was simulcasting the 1480 AM soul programming in evenings of April of 1968 when 1480 would switch to their night pattern, making the AM signal almost non-existent in the western suburbs of Philly. I recall coming across it and hearing the late Champe Haggins filling in for Butterball around 8:30 PM, and it was loud and clear. Several weeks later the FM switched to that lame "Hyski's Underground". What a waste! Simulcasting the AM at night would have been an excellent opportunity for WDAS to get their signal to an audience that couldn't pick up WDAS AM or WHAT AM after sundown, and believe me, there WAS an audience out there hungering for it. No! Instead, they wasted three years on that stupid, pretentious rock format that was a very sloppy second to WMMR. Talk about a missed opportunity!

76. Posted on Saturday, February 24, 2018 by Louis Agre:
The song that was played during Apologetic Line was When Your Gone by Brenda and the Tabulations

77. Posted on Wednesday, April 4, 2018 by Robert Tinsley:
Jason Miller did the sunday jazz brunch back in the 1990's and he did it well.he played jazz guitarist who did a remake of dionne warwick song walk on this day i don't know who the guartist is.who can help me.i was thinking it was jaco pastorious.because he did mention a pat methany group alumni on guitar.20 years later still have nothing.HELP ANYBODY,SOMEBODY.

78. Posted on Monday, May 21, 2018 by gary blauvelt:
Does anybody remember Julian "Cannonball" Grahme one of the great screaming djs and hosted Larry Williams ("The Boney Maronie King") at the Uptown in, I think, 1958. ("Gonna make a whole lotta noise in this hall / I'm ten feet tall, I'm the Cannonball!")

79. Posted on Saturday, June 9, 2018 by A.C.E.:
Re Comment #71, I worked at DAS from May 1970, thru December 1995 in the engineering dept. During that time a do not remember a Nancy Houston working as a newsperson. Of course, it is possible she was there prior to my employment, but some of her statements seem to be a little strange, such as a recording booth. There was the AM studio, the FM studio, a news booth for the AM station. and a recording room behind the engineering station. The entrance to the room was not behind the mic but rather to the side, and there had to be someone, usually on of the engineering staff behind a glass partition to operate the sound equipment. Probably in the mid 70s this was rebuilt into a complete production studio as were to AM & FM studios. They were side by side by side. This could now be entered from behind, but still wouldn't be considered a booth.The engineers worked a swing shift so at any given time a engineer might work one week at night, then one week early morning, and the next in the middle of the day. And of course, I worked any hours any day at any given time. Of course, I wasn't there 24/7, but I do not recall ever seeing any Black Panthers at the station while I was there. While I am not trying to say all the guys at DAS are "choir boys", I do find it hard to believe they would line up and laugh at a woman if in fact, she went through this ordeal. In my 25 years at DAS, I felt the men and women there were a close knit group. It was not uncommon to socialize away from the workplace. I consider myself to be a very luck guy to have spent 25 years at DAS. It would be hard pressed to find a better employer than Max Leon. He treated everyone there like family. Even now that it is over 20 years I left DAS it is amazing to me how often someone will say to me "Oh did you work with Butter, or Jimmy Bishop, Georgie Woods, Hy Lit, and even Harvey Holliday, and Patti Jackson, both of whom are still on the air. I remember Joe Niagara was on the air when the FM went from 20,000 watts to 50.000 watts. It was definately an honor to work with some of the greats of Philly radio. Carl Helm Royce Howard, Gregg Pitts aka Johnny O. Larry Daily, Jocko Henderson, and his son Doug Henderson, Kae Williams, plus all the others that were mentioned in other posts. I'll end with this last rememberence. In the early 70's, DAS had a basketball team that would go to different schools and play the faculty. On that team was Carl Helm, Jimmy Bishop, and Gerogie Woods a

80. Posted on Monday, July 23, 2018 by kym landers:
In response to the inquiry above, yes, I remember "Cannonball" aka Julian Graham at WDAS-AM. He lived at a big house on the corner of 38th and Girard in Philly. He was involved in the Liberty Bell record label (cir.1964), and released "She Tried To Kiss Me", a real stomper by F.Beverly & The Butlers in May of that year, produced by Charles Earland. He was at 'DAS from around 1956 to 1961 (?) as an on-air personality and marketing director. He got caught up in the payola scandal of 1960, as so many of the jocks did, including Fatman, Hy Lit, and countless others. He mysteriously faded away into and the shadows of the distant past, but he is in many ways a legend. Contact Mitch Zatto of the Zatmandu Consolidated Database for additional data.

81. Posted on Saturday, September 1, 2018 by Roger:
In response to two questions: 5. Posted at 8:25 PM on 4/28/2010 by Liz Marshall: Back in the '70 there was a song played regularly on the air. The lyrics spoke of GOD creating the world. It went something like "rised his hands and said, let there be sunshine, let there be peace, let there me happiness" What is the name of the song and who sang it. The group and song: Caston & Majors - Let There Be Love (1974) Question2 11. Posted at 10:05 AM on 9/22/2010 by J. Scott: I am looking for the correct title of a song sung by Chaka Chan with the words "I want you, Ineed you" in it. It is an up beat song i am looking for to use in my aerobics class. It is played almost every Sunday Night. Thank you!! The song by Chaka is I Know You, I live You (1981) It's on the Clouds LP

82. Posted on Saturday, October 27, 2018 by Gay Blauvelt:
Yes - Cannonball was the BEST. ("Hey, you lookin' for me? I'm right back here where I'm supposed to be. Don't you be no clown. Pass the word around. The Cannonball has done re-invaded this town!" - and a lot more, of course). I went to Cannonball's Larry Williams show at the Uptown - the first matinee on the opening Friday. Jackie Wilson was also on the bill but failed to appear on that show. I'd give a great deal for a complete Cannonball radio show from that era. (Didn't he almost always kick off the show with "Let's Go, Let's Go, Let's Go" by Hank Ballard and the Midnighters?) The closest I have at the moment is an immitation I did of him on my old reel-to-reel tape recorder - that, too, long gone.

83. Posted on Wednesday, July 31, 2019 by Saleem Alhakim:
Whatever happened to Mitch Gilbert?

84. Posted on Wednesday, October 30, 2019 by Frank :
What is the song played to start the Quiet Storm

85. Posted on Thursday, November 7, 2019 by Lisa:
One question and one reply. Question: who was Butterball's Sunday night dj before Andre the Giant? Nice brother who also passed away from complications of diabetes. Comment: Perry Johnson used to rap over the song "Let's Begin the Dance" by Hamilton Bohannon. On youtube, type "Hamilton Bohannon - Perry Johnson cut" and it will come up. Yes, and make you dance. This fabulous website really takes you on a wonderful ride. Radio forever!!

86. Posted on Sunday, March 22, 2020 by Carol Morris:
I believe that Rev. Jesse F. Anderson, Sr received an award from WDAS in the mid 60's for his work in the community and civil rights movement. Can someone please verify this? I was a young teen and lived with Rev. Anderson and his wife at the time. Thank you for all the wonderful years

87. Posted on Saturday, May 2, 2020 by Myron Wright :
I'very been trying to remember Dr. Perri Johnson's theme song and most importantly the rap he said in the mid '70s. Pleas help. I only remember only a small portion of the rap, and none of the song.

88. Posted on Sunday, August 2, 2020 by Bob Forrester:
I was listening that fateful night when My Father's Son played Coming Into Los Angles. After being off the air all night and most of the morning 'DAS came back playiing a cart tape full of strange sounds and the occasional male voice with tidings of "something new" and "something different" it repeated every ten or fifteen minutes for over a day. After that the "New" WDAS started with all new DJ's as the entire on-air staff had either quit or beeen fired (depending on who you ask).

89. Posted on Tuesday, January 5, 2021 by Judy C.:
I worked at WDAS in 1960 as Max Leon's secretary and knew all the DJ's at that time. A great place to work.

90. Posted on Sunday, January 24, 2021 by Sha’Ron D.HamptonBrown:
I modeled for the very first Unity Day fashion show I’m trying to retrieve a copy of the event so I can show my Granddaughters I modeled for WDAS at several night clubs through out Philadelphia Thankful for your help.

91. Posted on Saturday, February 13, 2021 by Harry Maxwell :
Can someone please tell me the transition used when doctor Perry Johnson came on with at 6 p.m. in the early to mid 1970s before he used the Bohannon let's start the dance transition.

92. Posted on Monday, April 19, 2021 by David :
@A.C.E: Re comment # 79: Was Joe Niagara on WDAS-FM during its rock era? Because as I understand it, he either quit or was fired from WIBG (due to a modification to a Bill Drake-influenced “more music” approach to Top 40) in 1968–the same year WDAS-FM went to a progressive rock format.

93. Posted on Monday, April 19, 2021 by David:
Harvey Holiday (now—and AFAIK—still—on WOGL) was one of the first jocks on WDAS-FM’s full-time R&B format when it premiered in 1971. He was also a holdover from the progressive rock days of the late ‘60’s and very early ‘70’s.

94. Posted on Monday, April 26, 2021 by Nancy Huston:
This is in response to a post of 6/9/2018 by A.C.E. which I just read. It is a true story but my date is wrong - I worked at DAS-FM in 1969, not '70 - the big March on Wash. was Nov of 1969, not '70. I was groped and kissed on the back of my neck while reading an ad for the Purple Plum. I'm embarrassed to say I even remember a line of the script that was rather crude. I was 19 yrs old. I may be wrong on where the door into the booth was, but I am NOT wrong on anything else. I had been asked to stick around after work to do this ad. I believe I know the name of the nighttime dj who did this. I was too young then, honestly, to cope with this. The room I spent time in prior and after I'd do the news was with an elderly man who smoked cigars, which was awful, and an extremely nice, very kind gentleman named Bob Perkins. He has a very popular jazz radio program on WRTI-FM. Such a nice man. In my previous post, I mentioned the Black Panthers who were often in the building. What brought my back to this site was this new film, Judas and the Black Messiah. I just read what it was about - the Panthers - and I saw no reference to a 1970 shootout in Chicago - again it is because I was off my a year. There were 2 in 1969 - one in July, one in November. I phoned their HQ upon learning a shootout was going on, and someone actually answered. It was chaotic, shouting gunfire. I recorded it in what I think was an 8 track, that could be magnetically erased and reused - old technology. I don't know if any of it could be or was aired. Steve Leon hired me to read the news with absolutely zero experience. It was an exciting time in history and I gave it a whirl. The incident in that booth was humiliating and no, I did not walk through a row of howling laughing dj's the next day. But I did indeed know as soon as I arrived that the nighttime and maybe early morning people listened to the recording and a few comments were made. I did leave soon after. My pay was $60 a week, I cleared $42.96 a week. Steve Leon was always a nice guy to me, and I'm not sorry I took a job so completely out of left field. It was interesting.

95. Posted on Monday, June 7, 2021 by Kevin Gilbert:
I am the first son of Kevin Gilbert. I walked out of the desert after many years just this year since the time of Mitch's passing in 1986. I and my partner and team are carrying on the message at

96. Posted on Saturday, August 21, 2021 by Kevin Gilbert:
I am Mitch Gilbert's son born 1960. We have a website up on Dad and you can see my writings and hear my podcasts at Wisdom Warriors University, Peace

97. Posted on Monday, December 20, 2021 by Vermell jolly:
I worked as a Switchboard operator at WDAS. I recorded promos for commercials and was proud to have worked with all the greats, like Georgie Woods who gave me my first job as a Screamer at the Uptown Theater for the performing acts. George Woods was not only a radio personality but a Civil Rights leader. It was my honor to have attended civil rights marches. Thanks to Butterball (Joe Tamburro), John Bandy and Jocko for hiring me to sing and dance at record hops.

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