Rare & Scratchy Rock ‘N Roll
How It All Began
The “original” Rare & Scratchy Rock ‘N Roll (“R&SRNR”) was a three-hour weekly show that eventually was syndicated on more than 135 radio stations across the United States from 1983 to 1985. It entertained listeners with “the oldies that time forgot, but maybe you remember.” Inspired by his 1968 Soundscope series on WRIF-FM in Detroit, “Radio Dave” Milberg began collaborations with two other veteran broadcasting buddies – “Ken R.” Deutsch and Al Mitchell. The would create a syndicated radio show that would provide an alternative to the mainstream “oldies” stations of the day that for the most part played the same few hundred songs over and over and over ad nauseam. And that begat R&SRNR.
It was designed to complement rather than compete with the myriad other “long-form” syndicated radio shows of the day that radio stations commonly aired to fill out their weekend schedules, such as American Top 40 (with Casey Kasem), Dick Clark’s Rock, Roll & Remember, and Gary Owens. Soundtrack Of The Sixties, among many others.
Milberg wrote the scripts, chose the music, and ran the “business side” of the enterprise. Al Mitchell voiced it and handled affiliate station relations. Deutsch produced it and assembled all the pieces. Given the technology of the day, each show required a combined 50 hours or more each week to create. Then there were the six reels of audio tape for each program, multiplied by 135 stations and further multiplied by the need to ship them to stations weeks in advance – a logistical, costly, and time-consuming adventure to say the least.