As we seek clues to establishing our black ancestry ties, always turn to the non-traditional sources such as this playlist from the nation’s first black-owned and operated radio station that was found in my hometown, KOWH-AM/FM.
This particular play list of February 1972 is more than a ranking of the top tunes among black radio listeners. It provides the first and last names, the titles and photos of the DJs and management involved in KOWH-AM/FM’s day-to-day operations.
There are a lot of themes and other nuisances associated with this playlist. For example, you can tell that there was a background sheet as the “Sound of Soul” and “Soul Men” are among the best placed graphics. The sheet was obviously placed in a typewriter as the strong impressions reveal the strength of the stroke keys.
You have to be somewhat of a detective to capture Black genealogy to share the best histories of our ancestors.
Family kudos: My Dad, Dr. Rodney S. Wead, was the initiator of KOWH-AM/FM. He was able to convince other folk to raise the $500K capital needed for the downpayment of the radio station in the early 1970s. The result was a world-class radio station that I loved.