WMMS summer sweepers
Here are three summertime sweepers we’d occasionally run in-between two songs to ID the station with.
We had competition – good competition – and we never went more than a couple of songs without identifying the station. We wanted to make sure our listeners knew what station they were listening to.
Our foremost IDs and sweeps were voiced by Len “Boom” Goldberg. These would be augmented by what we called our celebrity IDs – sweepers cut by visiting rock stars, movie and TV stars, comedians, and others of social import.
At WMMS, everyone crossed paths and it wasn’t uncommon for a recording session, whether it be for a station promo or even a commercial, to have non-airstaffers add their voice to a production piece.
Me, Gaye, and Murray Saul at the Beachland
Such was the case with these summer sweeps, cut by Gaye Ramstrom, our national sales manager. Gaye’s voice was just right for what we had in mind.
The first track dealt with sex appeal. Was it her descriptive bikini or was it the radio station she listened to?
The second was our summer sun public service announcement – a reminder that “it’s time to turn so you won’t burn.”
The third – the big, bad Buzzard O as we called it – featured our unique way of announcing the three-day Buzzard Memorial Day Weekend Blitz. We went all-out on three-day summer weekends – especially Memorial Day weekend – the unofficial kick-off of the summer vacation season. We’d pull out all the stops on those weekends, featuring classic concerts from the archives and go all-request with our music – putting special emphasis on the non-stop weekend parties we were providing the soundtrack to. It’s safe to say that you wouldn’t hear a promo like this one on radio today. Production director Tom O’Brien and I had the distinguished pleasure of directing Gaye in this epic promo.
Back then, we knew what to get away with because we knew our listeners and they knew what to expect from the Buzzard.
And Gaye? Today she’s on the forefront of the revitalization of downtown Cleveland as co-owner of Coakley Real Estate, which focuses on the sale and leasing of historic properties, the leasing of downtown/suburban retail and office space, and a new component-selling luxury condominiums and homes.