In the mid-1960s Bob Smith aka Wolfman Jack was working as the manger of a small daytime-only radio station, KUXL, 1570 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. As manager, Smith helped station operator, Marvin Kosofsky change the programing from strictly religious to a more youth-oriented format: Rhythm & Blues. The station broadcast continuous tapes of religious preachers during the mornings but from 1:00 in the afternoon until sundown KUXL played R & B records from the likes of Ike & Tina Turner, B.B. King, and The Four Tops. The station also sponsored dances & concerts featuring performers such as The Temptations, Jimmy Reed, and Jr. Walker. Even though he was the manager, Smith never broadcast from the Minneapolis station as Wolfman Jack during the time that that he was there.
|KUXL R&B Hit List, November 1968|
Aware of the immense popularity of the tiny station, Smith got dollar signs in his eyes and decided to apply the exact same format of paid-programming mixed with current R & B to take over the high-powered, 50, 000 watt Mexican station, XERB, 1090 AM. The transmitter sight for the station was located near the costal resort city of Rosarito Beach in the Mexican state of Baja California which is about 10 miles south of the California, U.S. border. Helping with the new adventure were KUXL disc jockeys, Art Hoehn (a.k.a. Fat Daddy Washington) and Ralph Hull (a.k.a. Preacher Paul Anthony and The Nazz). At first, beginning in late-1965, they operated the "Big X" from Minneapolis, then relocated to offices in Los Angeles, California in 1966.
|A facsimile of the station's 1966 schedule. Turf Craft racing results & Glory Bound Train were (unannounced) paid advertising income for the station.|
The station’s new format was a complete success. XERB had been a Country music radio station before Bob Smith & company took over. The new "Super Soul" format was quite an exciting change, and on top of it all, they had the mysterious and outrageous, Wolfman Jack howlin’ and prowlin' over the airwaves for 6 hours every single night. Have mercy!!!
|XERB Record survey July 1967 Compare this "Soul Monster" record survey to that of KRLA's Top-40 survey also from July 1967 (further below)|
|XERB RECORD SURVEY, October 7, 1967. Although the XERB transmitter towers were in Rosarito Beach, in the Mexican state of Baja California, the station operated as though it were a local Los Angeles/Hollywood station and used many local L.A. sponsors. |
|While Wolfman's shows become more eclectic, XERB's "Soul" format became limited to specific shows by DJs such as Bill Harris as this 12/22/1969 survey shows.|
- Air-Checks. KUXL (1967). Radio Tapes.com. Retrieved 2/12/2014: http://www.radiotapes.com/airchecks.html
- Air Heads Radio Survey Archive. KRLA 1110 AM Survey 7/8/1967. Retrieved 2/12/2014: http://las-solanas.com/arsa/surveys_item.php?svid=3576
- L.A. Baby Boomer's Rewind Den. Station Record Surveys. Retrieved 2/13/2014: http://lababyboomersrewind.blogspot.com/p/hodge-podge-of-stuff.html
- Steve Hoffman Music Forums. Powerhouse AM Top 40 Station: KRLA. Retrieved 2/13/2014: http://forums.stevehoffman.tv/threads/powerhouse-am-top-40-station-krla-los-angeles-now-with-vintage-krla-surveys.32282/
- The Odd Couple TV series. (1973) [Screenshots of Wolfman Jack]
- Twin Cities Radio Timeline web page.(1964) Retrieved info on KUXL on 2/13/2014: http://www.slphistory.org/history/radio.asp