Erskine Faush, Two Minute Audio Snippet

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Erskine Faush, Two Minute Audio Snippet


Radio Ratings


Erskine Faush discusses segregation in the early days of Birmingham radio, and how ratings were determined.


Erskine Faush
Bob Friedman


October 22, 1997



Oral History Item Type Metadata


Bob Friedman


Erskine Faush


Erskine Faush: ... of course all the traditional trappings of life in southern Birmingham, Alabama were there. You had separate restrooms inside. You had separate -

Bob Friedman: In BCO?

E: In everywhere.

B: Everywhere. Sure.

E: What you had was a hallway with a partition down the center of it, and the executive offices if you could consider it that in as much as it was the old Bessemer waterworks building (laughs), and the management offices were on one side…

B: That building doesn’t exist anymore.

E: No. It’s since torn down. It was a little building I think on that corner of…

B: Was it a little park then?

E: No it was the Town Clock Café, was on, directly on the corner which is across the street from the city hall, in fact the Bessemer City Auditorium is still on that corner today. Across the street on the western most corner, was the Town Clock cafeteria. Next door was the building we occupied as a radio station, which was converted from the old Bessemer Waterworks building. Next door to the radio station and this waterworks building was the uh Bessemer general hospital, which no longer exists.

B: Mmhmm. I went down there um just to see and I think I think it’s almost all park now or something it’s all green.

E: That would be a probably a yeah I guess so I don’t know it’s been a long time since I’ve been there but a block aways I think is Debardeleben Park

B: Ok. So, what’s the competition like between WEDR, JLD, and BCO? How are people thinking and talking about you know competing? There’s obviously no rating system.

E: At that time?

B: At that time.

E: Oh yes there was.

B: Oh yes there was, OK.

E: There was the Hooper.

B: Hooper? Ok.

E: Yes. And the Pulse.

B: And the Pulse. And what was that – how did they, what did they do – phone? Phone calls?

E: Uhh, the Hooper ratings I think was um I think it was phone, and some of them used a combined methodology of both uh, they actually had people on the street knocking doors.

B: Wow.

E: Who would go in and sit with people. And talk to them.

B: (laughs) Really?

E: Sure.

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Erskine Faush 2 min.wav


Erskine Faush and Bob Friedman, “Erskine Faush, Two Minute Audio Snippet,” The Birmingham Black Radio Museum, accessed February 19, 2018,

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