From Bob Shannon:
The Find Perry Allen Contest
Perry Allen and The KRLA Mystery Man or Find Perry Allen
contest is probably one of the best stories in broadcast history.
According to Perry, "I was doing the KB morning show...on a newsbreak I got
a call from the front desk. The gal informed me there were two LA radio
people wishing to see me on a promotional matter. I was stoked.
"Imagine! I'm goin' with a station that's so top-of-the-line they send
guys to Buffalo in order to whip up a promotion." I wind up enthusing all
over these two guys - one of whom was Charlie Arlington, a KFWB newsman.
The other guy did sales for the Crowell-Collier Minneapolis station. They proceed to
suggest I call Jack Kent Cooke at KRLA in order that I might inform
him...he owes his competitor, KFWB ten-thousand-bucks. With wavering
voice...I do so. Jack shouts back, "Do you have any idea how much ten
thousand dollars is?" to which I respond, "If I did, I wouldn't be taking
this job with you."
The promotion was called...deceptively enough..."The find Perry Allen
Contest." Listeners were urged to walk up to any guy in L.A. and ask,
"Are you Perry Allen, the newest member of the ever-lovin' eleven-ten
men?" Theoretically, the winner would ask the question of me.
Of course, I was still in Buffalo, so winning was an impossibility. Between the time
I'd taken the KRLA job and the time I exited KB, Chuck Blore had called me
from KFWB with a job offer. Unhappily I couldn't accept because of my
KRLA commitment. So, as soon as the "new rocker" came on the
air...and he heard the "Find Perry Allen" promo...he had Cooke nailed.
Had Jack not battled so hard to keep his $10,000 in the matter, he could have
reaped a windfall of international promotion and, probably, retained the
license. But fight he did. Meanwhile the story had been picked up
by...just about everybody...including The CBS Evening News...The Wall
Street Journal...MacClean's in Canada.
I eased my way out of KRLA...threatening to tell the F.C.C. about a number
of problems within the operation. For one thing...in their application they
vowed to air 5 minutes of religion every hour (on a rocker!) and an hour
agricultural show they swore I hosted every morning. Then there was a key
to the new 50K transmitter...the one who found that was to reap a prize.
The guy (PD Bill Wheatley) who wrote out the clues supposedly leading to
the key's locale didn't know where the key had been stashed.
After due consideration...they released me from my contract. This, through
sheer coincidence, allowed Wink Martindale and I to swap shows. Wink had
been doing AMs on MOR KHJ. I was weary of a top 40 format."
It was the Perry Allen incident that ultimately lead to the revocation of
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