We recently uncovered an extremely rare CKLW year-end playlist for 1965 from a private collection, kept undisclosed for well over 55 years.

On Saturday, September 4, Big 8 Radio streamed the Official CKLW Top 100 of 1965 — for the first time over the Labor Day weekend  — exactly as the chart was tabulated by the CKLW music department over five decades ago.

An encore presentation of the CKLW Top 100 of 1965 Countdown was also broadcast HERE at — Labor Day Monday, September 6 at NOON ET.

The year-end chart was never distributed nor made available to the public, and we believe the numbered playlist/countdown probably never aired on CKLW that year.

And last, we are pleased to say our special four-page souvenir chart of the CKLW Top 100 of 1965 is now available — FREE DOWNLOAD  — on the Big 8 Radio official webpage (click the link above).

For our friends who may have missed the stream, it is now available (anytime) — ON DEMAND — here on Motor City Radio Flashbacks. Join us for this special 5-hour ‘CK 2021 broadcasting experience. The CKLW Top 100 of 1965. Presented here — exclusively — by Big 8 Radio. 🙂

Charlie O’Brien


NOTE: On Monday, September 20, look for the special Big 8 Radio’s own (four page) CKLW ‘Countdown Top 100 of 1965’ playlist/brochure on Motor City Radio Flashbacks.




NEW! A special THANK YOU to Charlie O’Brien for contributing the featured CKLW Top 100 of 1965 broadcast with Motor City Radio Flashbacks.


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Passing a short note to inform our friends we will be away all next week for a late-summer break — but will be back here on Motor City Radio Flashbacks on Monday, September 20.

But be advised, this website remains open 24/7, always. There’s much to see here. And there may be something here you might have missed from our archives.

This site has already amassed over 6,150 posts and features to date, since January 2012. Thank you for your visits, contributions and your support! In the meantime, and until then, keep it right here. There’s more to come . . . on Motor City Radio Flashbacks! 🙂



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The Detroit Free Press March 27, 1960

SUNDAY, MARCH 27, 1960



The Detroit Free Press | Ed McKenzie | WQTE

Above article/ad courtesy newspaper archive.

Copyright 2021.


The above featured Detroit Free Press article was digitally re-imaged by Motor City Radio Flashbacks


A special THANK YOU to senior MCRFB consultant Greg Innis, of Livonia, MI., for contributing the archives, (Detroit radio related) articles, ads, and images we have featured on this site, since 2016.

Thank you, Greg Innis, for making these historic Detroit radio features possible. 🙂


Missed any of our previous ‘Detroit Radio Back-Pages‘ features? GO HERE

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From the MCRFB NEWS archive: 1964

The Bill Gavin Newsletter


Billboard Contributing Editor

“TOP 40 RADIO,” as we have known it for a decade, is fast becoming obsolete. “Top 40,” as a term of reference relating to a music format based on singles sales, will undoubtedly continue in our vocabulary for some time to come. In practice, however, the number of stations actually using a full 40 best selling singles is rapidly decreasing. The majority of pop format stations today have reduced their applicable lists of hits to 25 or 30 titles. The day of the playlist numbering 80 to 100 titles has passed. These days a list of 60 titles is considered long.

INTERESTINGLY enough, a good many stations decline to publicize the fact they have shortened their surveys. These stations continue to print and distribute a full top 40, or top 50, as they have done for years past. Their program directors will tell you privately that they are actually playing only a portion of the records on their charts. For some reason. not clearly understood, they are reluctant to publish a limited list of the hits they are playing, which omits some singles that are still selling better than some others that are being played. Other stations with attenuated surveys make no secret about it, they publish their top 30s with no attempt at concealment. There are two slightly different approaches now being taken to the short survey. In one case, the top survey items are simply listed according to tabulations of sales reports. The other system deletes the older hits that are dropping down rapidly, so that the resulting list of 30 may actually he a blue-penciled 40.

A few stations, accepting the principle of a smaller number of records for airplay, still cling to the mystic magic of the number 10. They continue with a full-blown survey of 40 hits but hold down their “extras” to only 10 or 15. Such playlists obviously have less room for new releases than lists of “25 plus 25.”

PEOPLE in the record business quite naturally regard these changes in radio program policies with some misgivings. The sale of single records. as everybody knows, is almost entirely controlled by airplay. Some record men express the fear that widespread curtailment of playlists will reduce the exposure of new product. A number of radio people consider such fears to be groundless. “What’s the good of 40 or 50 extras on a playlist?” asks one radio man. “Most of them never get played often enough to find out if they’re hits or not. With only 20 extras. and 30 survey records, all the new things on your list get played at least every three or four hours all day long.” Another program director puts it this way: “Every time we knock a tired old hit off our chart, it makes room for something new. With this new system we’ll not only break more new hits but we’ll also stir up lots more interest and excitement in new records, new artists and new sounds. The record people all ought to be cheering us, instead of finding fault.”

SUCH A STATEMENT of the new policy should make good sense, but apparently it does not. Judging from comments and inquiries that have been coming in to me, a good many people seem to think that a playlist is shortened by chop- ping new tunes off the bottom. This is not so in the big majority of cases. The first chopping is done on the older hits that have dropped down below 20 or 25. Then the half hits, whose sales have been fair, but which have failed to show improvement for two weeks, are dropped. This makes room for the more dynamic newcomers, either with a number on the chart or as “hot comers” standing next in line for a number next week.

AT THIS POINT, the playlist would show about 10 titles in addition to the chart – a total of 35 to 40 selections. The final 10 or 15 on the list will be about equally divided among (a) previous picks that still could be hits, (b) regional hits that were passed by the first time around, and (c) brand-new releases.

If every pop format station in the nation played only five new records a week – many will continue to play more – it would be practically certain that every worthwhile new release would get fair exposure in a number of markets, large and small.

True enough, promoters will find it more difficult to get big station picks in some cities. In others, of course, this condition has existed for quite some time and will not be a new experience.

Let’s get one point quite clear: The new trend is toward a shorter survey. It is not in the direction of drastic curtailing of airplay on newer material. The emphasis is on weeding out the weaker sides – either weak from the infirmities of old age, or weak from an inherent inability to build sales. This does not imply an impetuous haste to delete every item that has passed its sales peak. The occasional smashes, like a Dean Martin or a Louis Armstrong, continue selling in big volume for a long time after they have dropped out of the No. 1 position, and radio will keep its “umbrella” over them while they’re moving out of the rack locations. On the other hand, fast dropping items become candidates for oblivion.

What the change does imply is that radio programmers now rely less blindly on statistics. There is more evaluation of statistical data to interpret in terms of strongest possible airplay. END


Information, credit, and news source: Billboard; September 12, 1964

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Motown Convention Hypes 1970 Fall Happenings ala San Francisco Chartered



SAN FRANCISCO Motown disclosed sweeping sales increases on all fronts during its sales convention here last week prior to unveiling an impressive 37-LP new fall product release.

The meeting here marked the firm’s 10th anniversary and also served as the company’s first international convention attended by representatives from its affiliates in the U.K., Holland, Canada, Mexico, Australia and Japan, in addition to its U.S. distributors and their wives.

Phil Jones, Motown’s director of sales, told distributors that the company’s total singles sales during the first six months of 1970 increased by 14.7 per-cent over the same period of 1969 despite the fact that there were three fewer releases this year.

He said that the average sale per singles release during the past 12 months amounted to 618,000. The total percent of singles sales increase since 1960, Jones said, reached 2,400 per-cent.

Jones said that 18 out of 24 singles released during the first six months of this year made the charts, giving Motown a batting average of .750.

In the tape field, Motown showed a 70.8 percent increase during the first half of this year over sales for the same period of 1969, according to Jones. He said that his firm was one of the first to handle its own tape CARtridge production and helped pioneer the field. He said that since 1966, the four -year period showed a 2,600 percent sales increase in Motown’s prerecorded tape product.

On the album front, Jones said, the first six months of this year showed a 37.1 percent LP sales increase over the like period during 1969. Since 1961, the company’s LP sales have increased 5.600 percent, Jones said.

Among the incredible statistics Jones tossed at the distributors was Motown’s 10-year singles chart batting average. Jones said that during Motown’s decade the company released 535 singles. Of these, 357 made the charts, giving it a percent- age of 66.7 of all the singles it has released hitting the charts.

In announcing the new fall product, Motown revealed it was adding a new label, Black Forum, which will be devoted to “the presentation of ideas and voices of the worldwide struggle of black people to create a new era. Black Forum also serves to provide authentic material for use in schools and colleges and for the home study of black history and culture.”

Three LP’s were introduced in launching the Black Forum line. These consisted of a Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. album dealing with his opposition to the Viet Nam war, an album featuring black poets Langston Hughes and Margaret Danner, and an LP devoted to Stokely Carmichael.

Fall Product

The fall product array included a Temptations Greatest Hits LP and a Martha Reeves & the Vandellas album on the Gordy label; Earl Van Dyke, Jimmy Ruffin, Jr. Walker and the All Stars, the Ruffin Brothers, The Originals, and Gladys Knight & the Pips on Soul; the VIP line offered LP’s featuring Chuck Jackson, a new group called the Hearts of Stone, and an album by the Spinners produced by Stevie Wonder. On the Rare Earth label, new LP’s included a release by a new English group, Sounds Nice (the group was named by Paul McCartney), and albums featuring Power of Zeus, Lost Nation which was produced by Ollie McLaughlin, Holland’s top chart riders The Cats, who will be on tour in the U.S. this fall, the Poor Boys, and Rare Earth.

An eight-LP release on the Motown label will feature the Jackson 5, the Supremes, the Four Tops, an album packaging the Supremes with the Four Tops and the Magnificent 7, Gordon Staples and the Strong Things, volumes 1 and 2
of a new series called Chartbusters (this features a gold foil package with only the color of the type on the sleeve being changed from one release to
the next for easy identification purposes), with each Chartbuster package featuring established Motown names, and an album of Diana Ross to round out the Motown label portion of the fall offering.

On Tamla, the new release included albums by the Marvelettes with this LP produced by Smokey Robinson; Marvin Gaye in a package of his 16 biggest sellers; and an album of Smokey Robinson and the Miracles.

The Chisa label features Letta, the Hugh Masekela South African discovery.

4 Yule Packages

In addition to these LP’s, the firm unveiled four Christmas packages. These featured Yuletide product by the Temptations (Gordy), an album of various artists on Motown (Diana Ross and the Supremes, the Temptations, Stevie Wonder, Smokey Robinson and the Miracles), Smokey Robinson & the Miracles (Tamla), and the fourth holiday package, the Jackson 5 (Motown). Tom Schlesinger, in charge of the firm’s graphics supervision, was credited with producing the sales presentation.

The meetings convened on Aug. 28 and were concluded Aug. 31 afternoon. They consisted of a well organized schedule of activities, highlighted by a banquet and show on Aug. 30. The show featured performances by Jimmy and David Ruffin, the Four Tops, Gladys Knight and the Pips, and following the intermission, Rare
Earth and the Jackson 5.

Bobby Darin, newly signed to Motown, and Smokey Robinson were co-masters of ceremonies.

Each performer brought a standing ovation. The last two acts on the bill brought the house down. Despite the late hour, the distributors applauded loud and long for the Jackson 5 clamoring for more.

Berry Gordy Jr., Motown’s president, addressed the distributors and members of his own company prior to the show stressing that the company was celebrating its 10th anniversary. He recalled the circumstances surrounding the birth of Motown, and related some of the milestones in its growth. His brief talk was comprised of a mixture of nostalgia and humor.

Welcoming remarks to all assembled were delivered by Barney Ales, Motown’s executive vice president and general manager. Ales singled out the presence of international representatives at the convention, and then introduced Gordy.

Among the guests attending the festivities were Mr. and Mrs. Berry Gordy Sr. Representatives from abroad included from the U.K. Ken East (EMI), Philip Brodie (EMI), John Reid (EMI), John Marshall (from the London Tamla-Motown operation), and Bill Fowler (Carlin Music).

Other international representatives attending were George Barlow (EMI), Australia; John Bush (EMD, Mexico; Gerry Oord (EMI) and Pete Felleman (EMI), Holland, and Don McKim (Phonodisc), Canada. Representatives from Japan included Joshihisa Honda (Victor of Japan) and Kazuo Hoshino (Cosdel). END


Information, credit, and news source: Billboard; September 12, 1970

Note: All photos featured herein courtesy Billboard from issue as dated.


Click on images for enlargement (PC). Stretch images across your (Mobile) device’s screen for enlarged detailed view.

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RECORD WORLD TOP 100 POPS September 4, 1965

RECORD WORLD 100 TOP LPs September 4, 1965




RECORD WORLD became one of three weekly music trade magazines (Billboard; 1894, Cash Box; 1942, being the other two) when it began its publication in 1946 as Music Vendor. The MV title was changed to Record World, April 1964, and so remained under that banner until it ceased publication, April 1982.

Above singles and albums charts courtesy of Record World, as issued, for the week of September 4, 1965.


The above RW charts were digitally re-imaged and restored by Motor City Radio Flashbacks



ON YOUR PC? You can read the above Record World charts ENLARGED. For a larger detailed view click above images 2x and open to second window. Click image anytime to return to NORMAL image size.

Click your server’s back button to return to MCRFB.COM home page.

ON YOUR MOBILE DEVICE? Tap over chart image(s). Open to second window. “Stretch” across your device screen to magnify for larger print view.

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A most-rare CKLW year-end playlist for 1965 was recently found in a private collection, kept undisclosed, well over 55 years.

Now! We are delighted to inform you the Official CKLW Top 100 of 1965 — for the first time ever — will be counted down exactly as it was tabulated by the CKLW music department over five decades ago.

An encore presentation of the CKLW Top 100 of 1965 Countdown will broadcast HERE at — today —  Labor Day Monday, September 6 at NOON ET / 9 PT.

Never distributed nor made available to the public, our special four-page chart of the CKLW Top 100 of 1965 will be available (for download) on the Big 8 Radio webpage (as linked above), Tuesday, Sept. 7.

Join us again on this Labor Day for this special 2021 ‘CK broadcasting experience. The CKLW Top 100 of 1965. Brought to you one more time — exclusively — by Big 8 Radio 🙂

Charlie O’Brien


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WKNR MUSIC GUIDE August 27, 1964

WKNR MUSIC GUIDE August 27, 1964

“Dancing In The Street” | MARTHA & THE VANDELLAS


ON YOUR PC? To fully appreciate this WKNR Music Guide for the week of August 27, 1964 chart feature click on image 2x and open to second window. Click image anytime to return to NORMAL image size.

Click your server’s back button to return to MCRFB home page.



ON YOUR MOBILE DEVICE? Tap on chart image. Open to second window. “Stretch” chart across your device screen to magnify for largest print view.


The above WKNR music chart was digitally restored by Motor City Radio Flashbacks

In Memory of George Griggs



A sincere, thank you, Mrs. Patti Griggs. This featured presentation would have not been possible without your generosity, dedication, and your continuous support.

Above WKNR music chart courtesy of Mrs. Patti Griggs and the George L. Griggs estate.


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The Animals’ Arrival Here Opens New York’s Paramount Theater with 10-Day Engagement



NEW YORK — The British invasion of the U. S. continues this week with the arrival of the Animals, new group clicking on the MGM label with House Of The Rising Sun.”

The boys are here for a 10-day engagement at the Paramount Theater (NYC) that begins Sept. 4. The theater, now closed, will reopen for this special engagement. The package is being promoted by Marty Kummer. The Animals consists of John Steel (drums), Eric Burdon (vocals), Charles Chandler (bass guitar), Alan Price (organ) and Hilton Stuart Patterson Valentine (guitar).

High-powered press action is being prepared for the boys via the offices of MGM through Sol Handwerger, and indie publicists Mal Braveman and Bob Perilla. It will culminate at the Delmonico Hotel on Sept. 3.

The boys also have been set for an MGM movie, The Swinging Set,” and footage for the picture will be shot during their engagement at the Paramount. Sam Katzmzn is producing the film. END


Information, credit and news source: Billboard; September 5, 1964

THE ANIMALS (‘The Swinging Set‘; MGM) Paramount Theater September 1964 (A)

THE ANIMALS (‘The Swinging Set‘; MGM) Paramount Theater September 1964 (B)

THE ANIMALS (‘The Swinging Set‘; MGM) Paramount Theater September 1964 (C)

THE ANIMALS (‘The Swinging Set‘; MGM) Paramount Theater September 1964 (D)

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ELEVEN WEEKS overall on the singles pop charts, “House Of The Rising Son” by The Animals peaked at #1 this week (3 weeks) on the Billboard Hot 100. Beginning August 30 through week ending, September 19, 1964. (Source: Billboard)

For our previous Billboard 1964 Number One U.S.A. Hits go HERE


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