Sunday, June 5, 2011

Bob Crane – Radio Legend

While it is generally well known that Bob Crane “got his start” in radio before he became known as Colonel Hogan on Hogan’s Heroes, what is not as widely known is how instrumental he had been in shaping the world of broadcasting. Innovative, cutting edge, and way ahead of his time, Bob Crane has been called a “genius” in radio by those who worked with him and knew him well.

His work spans several decades:

  • April 1950 (est.) to February 1951 (est.) – WLEA, Hornell, NY (also program director)
  • February (est.) 1951 to April 1951 – WBIS, Bristol, CT (also program director)
  • April 1951 to August 11, 1956 – WLIZ/WICC, Bridgeport, CT (also program director and Junior Achievement advisor)
  • September 3, 1956 to June 1965 – KNX-CBS Radio, Los Angeles, CA
  • 1967-1968 – U.S. Armed Forces Radio Network
  • 1973 (Spring/April) – KMPC, Los Angeles, CA

Over the years, Bob Crane did things in radio that had rarely, if ever, been done before, such as getting special dispensation from the engineers’ union to spin his own records and talking over a record track to introduce the song. Advertisers paid top dollar for airtime to have their products “roasted” by Crane, and celebrities clamored for the chance to be interviewed by him. Further, everything he did on the air was spontaneous. Nothing was rehearsed. With his unique style of humor and entertainment (that included his music and drumming talents), as well as his drive, ambition, and cheerful character, Bob Crane can be credited for paving the way for radio personalities and disc jockeys for generations to come.

IMPORTANT NOTE: The National Radio Hall of Fame Steering Committee did not open voting to the public for the 2011 Class. For more information about Bob Crane's nomination and our efforts for 2012, please click here.