Not affiliated with CBS or its current owners, and is independent, sometime critical, often impertinent.
Edward R. Murrow died for our sins
online history and archive
of this legendary CBS radio flagship station
Anchors Lou Adler (left) Jim Donnelly (right) 1978. Photo courtesy Martin Hardee.
click to enlarge
PETER O. E. BEKKER|
photo of Peter Bekker by Rita Sands
Rich Lamb [WCBS Reporter] asked me to let you know that our friend and colleague, Peter O. E. Bekker [WCBS writer-producer], died after a long battle with brain cancer. We will miss Peter's sharp wit -- remember his feature, "On Record?" -- and his refusal to suffer fools gladly. I'm told there will be a notice in the Times. He was 62.
In recent years Peter had been the consulting director of the New York Press Club, putting us on the web, maintaining our site, and managing our very successful awards competition. Press Club president, Steve Scott, wrote an excellent tribute on the NYPC page.
--Jane Tillman Irving
by Rich Lamb
Just after sunset on Lake Champlain, on an outdoor wooden deck in Vermont, surrounded by family and friends, Peter Otto Eric Bekker, Jr., aged 62, died peacefully at 8:50 PM on Friday, August 5, 2016, the culmination of a valiant three and a half year battle with brain cancer.
Mr. Bekker was a central figure in the New York Press Club, where he held the title of Consulting Director. He was renowned for his innovations on the club's web site, including his digitalization of what had been a cumbersome method for the entry and judging of its journalism awards. Mr. Bekker's system worked to the great advantage of the Press Club, and was the object of imitation by other august organizations which honor journalistic achievements.
Memorial Gathering for Peter O.E. Bekker
Mr. Bekker was an articulate defender of the first amendment, an author, a news writer and an editor whose sentences, both spoken and written, were justly famous for their clarity and ascerbic wit. Mr. Bekker wrote endless reams of newscopy for WCBS Newsradio 880 in New York City from 1975 to 1989. He also broadcast a feature of contemporary music criticism on WCBS titled Peter Bekker, On Record. He was the author of four books about music, on topics ranging from Gospel, to Jazz, to Country and the Baroque Period. Between his work as a writer and broadcaster at WCBS, and his tenure at the New York Press Club, he worked on an encyclopedia project at the Microsoft Corporation in Washington State.
Peter O. E. Bekker was predeceased by his parents and a younger brother Paul, and is survived by another younger brother Fred Bekker and sisterin-law Dawn. At the time of his death Mr. Bekker was a resident of Manhattan's Upper East Side.
Friday, October 7. 2016
5:30 - 7:30 PM
The Century Association, Red Room
7 West 43rd Street
RETIRED WCBS ANCHOR BILL FAHAN DEAD|
by Bob Gibson
Bill Fahan was the kind of man who never had a problem making himself heard. At least not in the nearly twenty years we knew one another at New York's WCBS NewsRadio88. As anchors at the all-news station we reported our share of tragic and happy stories and yet the former always seem to outweigh everything else. Bill, who was much loved and respected by his family away from home, sadly passed away early Thursday morning, June 23, at his Pearl River, New York, residence at 82.
Bill's daughter, Robin, told me that her dad had been in failing health for several months and really deteriorated last week. Without offering any specifics, Robin goes on to say that "we are thankful that this did not drag on and on and that her father is finally without pain and at peace."
More than one of my friends and Bill's former colleagues have accurately described him as a nice man and a talented man. He knew his craft and when and how to ask the pertinent and difficult questions in the midst of breaking stories when many of us didn't know what would happen next. Bill was also a fun-loving guy with a gift for gab who for quite some time attended our twice-a-year broadcasters' luncheons in New Jersey with his lovely wife, Joyce. Many of us had not seen him in a few years because as I was told by his wife, his arthritic knees made it very difficult to walk. I had paid the Fahans a visit now and then when I'd be in the metropolitan area and did so again last year when the above photo was snapped.
For those who are wondering and per Bill's wishes, there will be no funeral nor memorial service as he wanted his ashes scattered over some body of water. The water, incidentally, was a second passion because of his love for his boat which he kept docked not far from his Rockland County home. I never sailed with Bill but good friend Don Swaim, another WCBS alum, had, and reminded me that despite his affinity for getting out on the water, Bill could not swim. But as I understand it, he never shrank from the task to spend a nice day in a nice way with family and his friends on the Hudson.
As friendly and out-going as they come, Bill had a colorful 27-year career at WCBS following TV and radio assignments in middle America, including at KMSP Television, Channel 9 in Minneapolis, where he was the lead news anchor. Bill's was a smooth and rich, bass voice that commanded attention. A former colleague at CBS, Michael Kahn, many years ago in commenting for a New York Daily News
story about his favorite radio station while growing up, listed a number of the then-anchors at WCBS in the 1970s and made it a point to say "That whenever the end of the world comes, he wants to hear it reported by Bill Fahan!" Indeed, he had that kind of authoritative voice.
Heartfelt condolences to Bill's beloved wife, Joyce, his daughter, Robin, son, Terry, and the other Fahans whom I've unintentionally overlooked!
forget the history...
the profit margin isn't big enough
"...and the signal is clear, strong...unsettling."
by Phil Rosenthal, Chicago Tribune. HERE
Part memoir, part history, this is the incredible
story of Newsradio 88's helicopter fleet and its pilots
RITA SANDS' SCRAPBOOK(S)
Former WCBS anchor Rita Sands gives us dozens of candid, behind the scenes Newsradio88 snapshots from her own collection dating back to the 70s and 80s. They're presented here in slideshow form:
new page consolidates and adds to previous
entries on the history of WCBS
WCBS MEMENTO GALLERY
A collection of WCBS souvenirs, program schedules, artifacts, pictures, posters, old ads, memorabilia, hats, clothes, kitsch, and just plain junk.
|Mitch Lebe, budding announcer
Dedicated to Newsradio 88's younger,
WCBS's UNLUCKY PHILLY SISTER STATION
REST IN PEACE
Renamed WPHT as a far right-wing talk station, it fails the Tiffany test, and is an embarrassment to the once-great CBS image.
NEW YORK MAYOR ED KOCH
FORMER NEWSRADIO 88 PRODUCER JERRY LEVIN FINDS SOLACE IN OPERA AND FAITH
Fidelio is Beethoven's only opera, the story of a faithful wife who rescues her husband from a political prison. "Fidelio is my story," said Jerry Levin, ex-WCBS, in 1985 shortly after his miraculous escape from Muslim extremist hostage-takers in Lebanon. Almost an opera story, Jerry's wife, Sis, crisscrossed the Mideast seeking her husband's release. The drama was made into a TV movie, Held Hostage, with Marlo Thomas as Sis and David Dukes as Jerry.
Sis Levin's book, Beirut Diary, describes Jerry's captivity and her efforts to gain his freedom.
Jerry says he treasures an article about him in the September 1985 issue of Opera News titled "To Freedom," in which Jerry compares Sis to Beethoven's Leonore and himself to Florestan.
After graduating from Northwestern, Jerry joined WCBS as a producer in 1967, where his hyperkinetic newsroom style involved wielding a ruler like a riding crop.
Following stints in Birmingham and Houston, he went to CNN, where he became chief of the cable channel's Beirut Bureau, leading to his capture by Hezbollah gunmen.
In captivity and in isolation for eleven months, Jerry played opera games in his mind while experiencing a spiritual reawakening.
Currently, Jerry lives in Birmingham, Alabama, where he and his wife are involved in educational efforts to achieve peace through non-violence. And Jerry has not lost his love for opera. (--DS)
Jerry's email: firstname.lastname@example.org
| In 1993, WCBS launched its worst promotion campaign ever, something to do with slapping down competitor 1010-WINS with a flyswatter. Lost on listeners and the public alike, it did nothing to stop Newsradio 88's abysmal slide to its lowest ratings level since going all-news. click image to watch
1980s NEWSRADIO88 TV SPOTS
A WCBS staffer unearthed these short back-to-back TV commercials for Newsradio88 from the 1980s on YouTube. The first features Yankees manager Lou Piniella, the second actress Sally Struthers. Announcer's voice is Jim Donnelly. Runs thirty seconds. Click on image to play.
THREE BROADCAST LEGENDS
Election night, New York, 11/7/06
Rich Lamb, WCBS; Stan Brooks, WINS; Mitch Lebe, Bloomberg Radio (ex-WCBS)
Combined broadcasting experience: 130 years (rough estimate)
Famed author Norman Mailer appears on Ohio University's "Wired for Books," 1991, one of more than 700 unedited Don Swaim interviews with the greatest writers of the 70s, 80s 90s, and preserved by Ohio University, which organized and posted the archive on the Internet. In addition, all of the broadcast's actual two-minute features, some 3,000 of them, are available as mp3 files at Book Beat: The Podcast. The archive narrowly escaped extinction, but, thanks to Ohio University and Wired for Books, is reaching fans and scholars in a way the original broadcasts could not do. Cited by PC Magazine's "Best of the Internet" in November 2007.
click image to hear Mailer interview
THROUGH THESE PORTALS...
Original Newsradio88 studios at 51 W. 52nd St.
Black Rock, 51. W. 52nd St.
A designated NYC landmark
Philly's WCAU: RIP
WCBS "Art" Gallery
Behind Every Great Building...
The CBS Ediface
WCBS's Dave Atherton reads Poe
Pre-1967 WCBS logo
site edited by Don Swaim
Special thanks to John Landers, Bob Gibson for their contributions
VISIT SOME OF DON'S OTHER SITES BELOW
WCBS Appreciation Site
Book Beat: The Podcast
Wired for Books
Aspinwall HS Class of 55
Ambrose Bierce Site
Bucks County Writers Workshop
Steinbeck in Bucks Co
Growing Up in WW 2
Don's Houses: Where I've Been
Fighting the Hun in WW I
Official Stuart Cummings Ripley Site
Swaim Name in History
The Swaim in America
The Swimsuit Issue