Song of the Day #989
Song of the Day: WNEW (Theme Song), composed by Larry Green, is one of the most famous station-identification themes in radio history. I note it today in tribute to the late William B. Williams, on whose show one heard this theme music frequently. In 1958, Williams took over hosting duties for the "Make Believe Ballroom," a radio show created in 1935 by Martin Block for WNEW-AM, 1130 in New York. For his incredible work in radio, Williams was recently inducted into the New York State Broadcasters Association Hall of Fame. He was the man who nicknamed Francis Albert Sinatra, "The Chairman of The Board" (links to a two-part Williams interview of Sinatra). Growing up, I regularly heard Williams' wonderful, soothing voice introducing the Great American songbook to his listeners, day after day. And this theme song, which was even recorded in 1964 by Stan Getz and Bill Evans [YouTube link]) was omnipresent. Go to YouTube to listen to the original radio version and its countless variations, including this one and that one, and those inspired by holidays and seasons (Autumn, Winter, Spring, and Summer), and those done in the styles of Ray Anthony, Charlie Barnet, Count Basie, Les Baxter, Dave Brubeck and Paul Desmond, Ray Conniff, Martin Denny, Les and Larry Elgart, Erroll Garner, Benny Goodman, Neil Hefti, Al Hirt, Jazz Piano, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Spike Jones, Stan Kenton, Guy Lombardo, Henry Mancini, Billy May, Glenn Miller, Gerry Mulligan, Les Paul and Mary Ford, Nat Pierce, Perez Prado, Andre Previn, Nelson Riddle, Pete Rugolo, Lalo Schifrin, George Shearing, Felix Slatkin, Bob Thompson, and Kai Winding, and then check out our host with Nat King Cole and this specially-worded tribute to William B. Williams.