In a twenty four hour news cycle where I read that the Doomsday Clock had been moved forward two minutes, the Carteret Islands in the remote south pacific were the first victims of the rising sea due to global warming and the New York radio station icon WNEW has officially bit the dust, I felt I had to say something.

Yeah, things have changed.

Anyone who grew up in the New York area during the 60’s and 70’s is probably as sad as I am to hear the news about “NEW”. Not that it’s really news at this point since the radio station that we all knew and loved has not existed for many years now. This is just the final nail in the coffin of what used to be the vibrant NY radio scene.

Who could forget that rainy Saturday afternoon in 1974 when John Lennon popped in on Dennis Elsas and stayed for the afternoon playing DJ. Or when Lennon was gunned down only six years later on that dark day in December. I stayed up for three days straight listening to “NEW” and recording what they played into an old reel to reel tape recorder. I still have the tapes, but refuse to listen to them. Too depressing. It’s the only time I can remember Scott Muni crying on the air.

When Jimi Hendrix released Electric Ladyland or The Beatles released Abbey Road, “NEW” would play the whole record from start to finish without any commercials. You won’t see that anymore. They didn’t just play great music. I used to wake up early on Sunday mornings when they used to broadcast the lectures from the great philosopher Alan Watts.

Everyone was listening. The only time the radio was not on is when we were either playing the records that we just bought or playing music in our garage bands trying to copy that great sound that we heard on the records. Many a time I could remember walking into school in the morning and my friends would come up to me and say “did you hear what they were playing on “NEW” last night? Yeah, I heard. I used to go to sleep with the radio on.

Many of the old “NEW” crew has migrated over to WFUV which I guess is a positive thing. I still like listening to Pete Fornatale and Vince Scelsa on Saturdays. Too bad they and the classic rock format are only a small part of what is on the WFUV program schedule. Even so, things are just not the same. Maybe it’s me, but I just don’t feel the same excitement that I used to feel when I would turn on the radio back in the day and never knew what great song I would hear next.

Just did a search as google for WNEW and found lot’s of interesting stuff. Here is one with lot’s of cool old picts. Good memories.