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Re: lesser known pop hits

On 16 May 99,  Bob Nelson wrote:

> Hi--on today's Let's Talk About Radio, Bob and
> Donna mentioned that there are many songs from the
> pop charts (especially in the 60s and 70s) that don't
> get played on the radio, while other songs are played
> to death. They wondered if it might make sense to
> have a station play those songs--hits which made
> the top 40, maybe even the top 20, but somehow are
> judged too "uncool" for radio airplay.

When I did my airshift on WMUA a couple of weeks ago, one of the records I 
played was "Martian Hop" by the Ran-Dells.  I recalled that it was pretty high 
on the charts in the early 1960s, I thought 1961 or 62, but it never gets 
played on any of the oldies stations.  A station member called in to say that 
it reached #16 on the charts in August 1963, slightly later than I was 

Then I got e-mail from Aaron Mintz, who I believe has sometimes posted to this 
list.  He says he does a Rock & Roll oldies program on WHAI in Greenfield, and 
he plays Martian Hop. 

I just checked the WHAI website and found that they webcast, so I think I'll 
listen to Aaron's show next week.  I was too late this week.

I think that in time, the dynamics of radio must change.  As FM gets 
increasingly dull, someone with a failing station is going to be willing to 
take a chance on an innovative format, on the theory that the present format 
isn't working, so anything else =might= be better.  Eventually, too, someone 
is going to do what's necessary to publicize a new format.  Bob mentioned that 
if WJIB were to change format and adopt a format of playing rock & roll lesser 
hits, it would jump a couple of points in the ratings.  But how can that 
happen without promotion?

Well, I think that eventually, someone with some imagination and the money to 
promote will get hold of a dud station and try to do something different with 

And I think that eventually, as the baby boom ages, the advertizing community 
will have to change its notions of who they're aiming at.  There will simply 
be too many older people out there, with money to spend, to ignore.

As listenership keeps dropping, someone, someday, will get desperate enough to 
try something new.

 A.Joseph Ross, J.D.                                 617.367.0468
 15 Court Square                             lawyer@world.std.com
 Boston, MA 02108-2503              http://world.std.com/~lawyer/