Tom Murphy & Bob Dearborn at WCFL

bob dearbornTom Murphy After KOL, Bob Dearborn Before KIXI
On Chicago’s Super WCFL Together – 1973
If you ever wondered what happened to Tom Murphy after his quick blitz as KOL program director in 1972, here’s the answer. Murphy went to Chicago’s WCFL and was teamed with Bob Dearborn on morning drive. And here they are in January ’73 at a time when early ’70s pop music was softer, but CFL was still in a hard battle with longtime foe WLS. (You’ll hear several references to Larry Lujack, who was doing WCFL afternoon drive at the time.) Just over 20 years later Dearborn made an impressive five-year mark in Seattle as program director and on-air guy at KIXI. At 3:13 on the aircheck we hear a brief mid-’90s KIXI clip, with Dearborn’s dry humor coming through loud and clear.

Total audio running time about 4:22. wcfl survey

Murphy (40+ years) and Dearborn (nearly 48 years) had illustrious big-market careers marked by very young beginnings. Sweet Tom converted six solid years at KJR into nearly 20 years in Los Angeles plus five years in Chicago. It’s been said he may be the only one to jock with both Don Steele (Portland) and Larry Lujack (Seattle and Chicago). Murphy’s 18-year-old start at KISN (1959) is outshined by Dearborn’s first on-air job (1960) at age 15 in Hamilton, Ontario — reported to be a long-standing Canadian record. Dearborn logged 16 years in Chicagoland radio over four decades and was for eight years the producer/host of RKO’s Night Time America. He also did radio stints in St. Louis, Cleveland, Detroit, Tampa, Pittsburgh and Toronto. He claims to have moved 38 times in his radio career. The airwaves have lost a lot with the deserved retirement of these two broadcast gentlemen.
— Ron DeHart

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Author: Ronald DeHart

Ron DeHart is a former newspaper and broadcast journalist and a retired Public Affairs Officer from both the U.S. Forest Service and the U.S. Navy/Naval Reserve. His historical accounts of Pacific Northwest broadcasting are published by Puget Sound Media. View more articles by Ron DeHart  
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