Saturday, October 29, 2005

KRNW-FM, Boulder


I was having a nostalgia attack one evening and came across your web pages featuring KFML and KRNW. I was a part timer at KRNW from 1971 to 1975. In order to get my foot in the door, I had to agree to work the Monday evening classical programs (the Evening Salon and Evening Concert) for free. Bob Wilkinson, the station owner, was never willing to relinquish the 6-10 PM Monday through Friday time slot for anything other than classical music. While the chamber music and symphonies were on the air, I would listen to all kinds of great modern music on the other turntable.

Eventually, I was able to play whatever I wanted on a Friday evening program from 10 PM to 2 AM. Bob had a wonderful Jazz library and I usually devoted the last hour or two of the program to Jazz. I also substituted for Michael Muirhead quite a few times in the afternoon.

The studio was up the stairs at 1410 Pearl Street in Boulder across from a recording studio. Bob had a stormy relationship with the landlord as well as other business people in Boulder. After a plumbing incident that caused some damage to the hardware store below the studio, we moved to 1428 Pearl Street. This was a newly remodeled building. There was a night club on the top floor. KRNW was on the second floor. About a year or so after the move the station was sold to the KBCO people.

Some of the names of the other announcers were:

Kate Fortin (6-10 AM)
Dave Nettles (the Audio Radiance program)
Russ Mallot
Stan Rheaume
Michael Allbright (on air name was Michael Kow 2-6 AM)
Rick Schultz (went on to KHOW-FM in Denver during their brief foray in to Jazz)
Michael Muirhead (chief announcer)

The weekend people were:

Jason Sherman He was a manger of some kind at Tulagis (a Boulder night club)
Rick Stott He owned a business called Trade a Tape and Records in Boulder
Kenny Weissberg

I could come up with some interesting stories about all the wonderful people involved with KRNW. I also had my own moments of notoriety. Thanks for your efforts devoted to Free Form Radio. I am enclosing Bob Wilkinson’s obituary from several years ago. I don’t remember the person quoted in the obituary. He may have been the classical program announcer. It is possible I had a memory lapse. After all I was one of “those longhairs”.


James Kellogg


  1. Strange to read this account. It seems to this irrelevant old radio guy that non of these names, except for RNW, were present when Brian(Warthog)Steve and I were the original group of hippies at KRNW. Unless you worked there during those days (69 - 70), you didn't get the real dose of torture that comes with loving the music more than your next meal.
    Bill A.

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. As far as I know I was the first program director that Bob hired in 1967. He taught me how to work the board that consisted of one Ampex reel to reel tape machine and one manually operated turn table. Potentiometers were also manual. I had to keep manual FCC logs and power-up the station early in the mornings. There was a Chinese restaurant downstairs of the studio on Pearl St. I used to put a long cut on and go downstairs to have a cup of coffee. They would have my show on in the restaurant. That practice ended when I locked myself out of the control room. Bob was not happy.
      I also worked at KBOL with Roger Cracraft. The late Jim Fogelberg was the late night guy at KRNW while I was there. That was true FM radio.

  2. Bill - I mentioned to James that while I was part-timing with you guys at KFML (in 1972), I checked out KRNW as a possible dual home or transition-to spot. When I saw the physical state of the rooms (they weren't offices or a studio, really), I nixed that idea quick... Would love to hear some tales of KRNW from back in the 1969-1970 period...

  3. AnonymousJune 02, 2006

    What about James (Butch) Grayer, Junior(Marcello Cabus), Jim Pagliosotti, Scott Cohen, Bob (Romo)Panetta and others who were also mainstays @ KRNW. Seems like selective memory to me.
    Steve hired me to do a morning spot @ 6:00am.
    I have pictures of Jim amd Junior painting the walls in the studio.
    Remember the poster announcing the "Get Out Of Town" to heroin dealers where the distribution was done from KRNW.
    Remember when Steve & Babs lost their children in a fire on Peak to Peak and the KRNW listeners rallied with money, clothes, food and LOVE.
    Yes, that was KRNW.

  4. one who knows:

    Can you send the image of Jim and Junior and any other KRNW photos. Will put up on a KRNW page ala the KUNM page(s). If you're up for that, send them to: ... Thanks for posting!

  5. AnonymousJune 02, 2006

    I dimly remember when Marcello and I painted the studio at KRNW. Seems like a lot of other folks wandered in at various times to help us, including I guess One Who Knows. Can't wait to see that picture if it ever gets sent to you, Malcolm. If we happen to look high by any chance you can blame it on the paint fumes. Best regards and thanks again for keeping this dialogue in play.
    Jim Pagliasotti

  6. Jim - It's my honor. Freeform has been an important part of my life and I like to think that it still is... Thank you for feeling likewise... I'm serious about putting up a KRNW page or pages. I just need material.

  7. I discovered this site when googling my own name one night at 3 a.m. (Narcissism is alive and well). The thing that made me happiest was to see that Bill Ashford is still alive and well. Loved his show at KFML (along with those of his colleagues Jerry Mills, Sandy Phelps and Harry Tufts). Loved his wife Judy Roderick's band 60,000,000 Buffalo.

    I was at KRNW from September, 1971 to the final day of the station on April 1, 1977. I did 6-10 a.m. (M-F) for two years, quit and went to part time from '73-'75 and came back in '75 (8 a.m.-Noon) until the station's demise. My full time colleagues during KRNW's last hurrah were Kate Fortin, Peter Rodman and Ruth Bennett.

    After a year at KBCO, I helped launch Boulder's public station KGNU in 1978 and stayed there until leaving Boulder for San Diego in '83. After a 10 year hiatus from radio, I created "Music Without Boundaries" which has been on five different commercial stations in San Diego (currently at 91X,91.1 FM, on Saturday mornings at 7 a.m. Pacific time . . The relevance to this site is that the show is FREE FORM RADIO and has been for the past 13 years. Google my name to reach the Music Without Boundaries website and check out my Playlist Archives. Fans of free form radio will be as amazed as I am that this kind of show is on commercial airwaves in 2006.

    I have wonderful memories of my roots at KRNW and will always thank Jason Sherman for convincing Bob Wilkinson to hire me in '71. That kick started my 35 year career on the FM band which shows no sign of letting up. Anyone who wants any KRNW info can email me at

    Kenny Weissberg

  8. Hey Kenny....Thanks for the kind words and Buffalo really were a kick ass mountain band. Too bad we couldn't hold it together to fullfill our 2nd album obligation to Atlantic album. I don't know who was mentioning selective memory, but if you were sending a remark my way, I do remember Junior and Jim as the staff grew. My memory is not selective, perhaps shell shocked. All I can tell you is who was there when I was and who wasn't. BTW, Kenny, I'm programming a 24hour stream for Warpradio at
    I'm usually like 10a-2p est, M-F with the exception of this holiday week, but the music remains whether I take a day off or not. We call it the Rock Garden. Check it out.

  9. Hey Kenny! Thanks for the kind words and yes, The Buffalo were a kick ass mountain band. To bad we couldn't hold it together for our second contrated album that was never recorded. I'm curently programming a 24/7 freeform stream for warpradio. It's called the Rock Garden and available online at Once there, pick a listening speed, hear our one commercial and you should go right to the music. I'm there live M-F,10a-2p est, with the possible exception of this holiday week. Meanwhile, I know it wasn't you, but if the "selective memory" note was directed to me all I can say is that my memory may be shell shocked but not selective. I remember Junior and Pagliasoti and Steve, Scotti was with us mostly at KKML later. Sandy Phelps was hired to do mornings at KRNW, while a couple of us were waiting for KMPX in San Francisco and then came back to take KFML freeform. All that stuff that led to the sale of KRNW, and letter change to KBCO came later.Brian Kreizenbeck was also with us at KRNW and the time was late '69, a few months after Doubleday Publishing kicked us out of KMYR-FM, the first area full time freeform station.

  10. Hey,

    I don't want to be left out of this. I was at KRNW for over a year. Did weekends. Called myself "Abner Small" Show was called "The Abner Small Thing." Got the name from "Desire Under The Elms." One turntable! It was my first radio gig.

    Began in September 1969. Did Saturday and Sunday evenings. I remember following the Jazz show on Saturday nights. The show was called "A Taste Of Jazz." It was hosted by a man named Louie Buggs. His main man was James Moody. He taught me a lot.

    I also went on to do weekend Jazz at KHOW-FM. Hired by Harry Smith.

    Got my MA from CU J-School. Went to do news at KHOW-AM. Then began doing a talk show at KWBZ Denver. With Allan Berg.

    Been doing that ever since.
    Great Memories,
    David Gold

  11. How amazing to run across this discussion. I too, worked at KRNW one evening a week (I think it was like 11p-3a)from Fall 1969 through Spring 1970. I had moved out from New Hampshire in September after having worked at my local styation in Conway (WBNC). At KRNW (which stood for Robert NEAL Wilkinson) I remember that there was one turntable, one Ampex reel to reel and that the small studio looked out onto Robert Wilkinson's living room, where his classical records were piled on the floor..
    I had to keep the mike on when a cut ended, keep talking while I took it off the turntable, put a new record on the turntable, and hopefully put the needle on the right cut. Better than dead air, I guess. Of course I brought in my own records..Tom Rush's Circle Game, Circus Maximus,etc
    It was a strange experience but I stayed with radio and made it a career.
    Marc Berman

  12. Although I was somewhat on the fringes of radio in Denver/Boulder, I'd like to put in my comments. I started my radio show on KRNW in 1969. Bob Wilkinson taught me how bring the transmitter on line at sunset, I did the classical show during the evening and then had my own show until 2 AM. I worked with a number of people on KRNW including Kenny Weissberg. I was fortunate enough to be hired from KRNW to KMYR in Denver. I worked with Bill Ashford, Steve Burke and others. My radio career ended not too long after the demise of KMYR. I have very fond memories about both the music an people associated with freeform radio in Denver.

    Jim Fogelberg

  13. Jim

    I am still here in China. I was trying to get in touch. Things are going good. Send me an email if you get this message at