The Devil Is In The Detail

June 6, 1982 — Somewhere among the religion page, the front page, and the music page, you might have heard of “back-masking.” That’s the music industry’s name for modifying a sound and incorporating it into playbacks of the musical presentation. Some persons find this a distressing process, pointing to what they say are evil subliminal messages in contemporary rock records. (Channel 4’s “Town Meeting” addresses the question this evening.)
Locally, some folks have burned records from their collections to get rid of these influences of the devil.
This is old news to John Langan and Mike West of “Those Dudes, Langan and West,” the morning drive time show on KISW. Langan and West have been following the story since a Kentucky minister started the first bonfire. The Langan and West radio network, servicing a network of one, includes wacky hits and irreverent information along with music industry trivia. At the time of last month’s record burning in Lynnwood, the KISW duo decided to “burn their own record burner.” As morning listeners heard, the duo reported burning a fictitious Lynnwood minister and recording his screams.
According to the Langan and West analysis, the phrase “I really love Led Zeppelin” could be heard back-masked in the screams.

Tom Mann left KVI last week to develop a career as an alcoholism counselor.
“I just decided radio will play no part in my future, even though it was a big part of my past,” Mann, 51, said. In his 25 years in broadcasting, Mann had been disc jockey, news man, program director and the past four years, a talkshow host in Portland and Seattle.
“Twice in my career when I was looking for a job, I had managers interviewing me who were using a manual for talk radio that I developed when I worked at a station in Ohio,” Mann said.
After KAYO gave up talk, cutting Mann adrift along with others, he had been seeking full-time employment, but only had been able to get weekend and filling work at KVI the past year.

“It’s an absolute given,” says a veteran broadcast executive, that one or more big broadcast chains will edge their way into the Seattle-Everett market within the year. At least four radio stations have been approached about selling. Why? “Because there is no greater market in the country than the Seattle area,” explains Pat O’Day, president of O’Day Broadcasting of Washington.

Obie Communications , licensee for KAYO, has initiated action which would reserve a new set of call letters for the station.

Steve Larson is program director of the new KJET, formerly KZOK AM. Most of the initial voice tracks are his on the automated modern rock format, which debuted Memorial Day. Larson had been doing same on the old oldies format.

Susan Falconer left KMPS AM to concentrate on her musical career. Her band intends to tackle Nashville sometime soon. Her departure opened the midnight shift for Brady Wright, who patiently has been standing by as vacation fill-in and weekend jock at least three years.

Mark Ellis has been named production director at KPLZ. Within the month, he will give up his morning show, a shift he has held the past two years. Mark may move to a daytime shift, Jeff King, KPLZ program director, said.

Victor Stredicke

Author: Victor Stredicke

Former radio columnist for the Seattle Times.

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