After 65 years on air, WDIA still going strong - Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

After 65 years on air, WDIA still going strong

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(WMC-TV) - Known for years as the "Goodwill station," WDIA was the country's first black radio station.

Next month, the Tennessee Association of Broadcasters will induct the station into its hall of fame.

Bobby O'Jay, WDIA's program director and announcer for 30 years, is excited about the honor.

"Most of the radio stations that came along with us, they're gone. So it's a special day."

The station dates back to 1948. Its stable of talent including BB King, Bobby Blue Bland and Isaac Hayes, as well as Rufus Thomas, who is also being inducted

Now O'Jay is heading up a new group of stars such as Bev Johnson, Stormy, Stan Bell, Ford Nelson and Mark Stansbury.

 O'Jay says the key to WDIA's success has been the way it connects with listeners.

"It's one of my Bobby O'Jay secrets. It's like that special sauce. You know what I'm saying -- like that secret sauce, you know..."

The station's formula has worked for 65 years. O'Jay said he's had a ball working there and there's more to come.

"I'll be 60 this year. I plan on being on the radio until I'm 100 ... I've no plans to retire."

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