My Radio Memories

Image contains: Abbie, smiling.Today is National Radio Day, according to the national calendar. In this digital age, I wonder how many people still use radios. I rarely do, now that I have a smart speaker that can play the stations to which I enjoy listening.

When I was growing up in Tucson, Arizona, I had a transistor radio. I loved carrying it around the house. After my younger brother was born and I started acting up in second grade, Mother took it away from me for a day or two as punishment. I missed hearing my favorite songs and commercials and occasionally calling in requests. When I was a little older, I discovered an easy listening station with some classical programming that I also liked.

That radio lasted until we moved to Sheridan, Wyoming, in the summer of 1973. We stayed with Grandma for a couple of months until we found a house of our own. I slept with Grandma and loved waking up to her radio each morning. She preferred news programming. At the age of twelve, I couldn’t understand why but soon learned from her the importance of knowing what was going on in the world.

After we were settled in a home of our own, I got a clock radio for Christmas. Because of my limited vision, although I could read the time on the digital display, I couldn’t set it or the alarm. But I enjoyed waking up each morning to the same news programming and listening to popular music.

When I was in high school, one of our A.M. stations started broadcasting old episodes of The Lone Ranger, The Shadow, and some comedy. An F.M. station broadcast a mystery theater program. These helped me escape in a way television never did.

In college, my favorite shows were those containing count-downs of the most popular songs in a given week.
When my clock radio finally quit working, I asked my parents for another radio for my birthday during the summer of 1984 and got a lot more. First, there was a receiver, then a cassette deck. For Christmas that year, I finally got a Cd player. It was more than I could ever have dreamed, and since many of my friends in college also had stereos, I was elated. A year later, I discovered public radio and enjoyed news, classical music, jazz, and programs like A Prairie Home Companion. I lost interest in popular music.

Through the years and many radios, I continued listening to public radio. I still do today. I ask Alexa to play my local station each morning so, like my grandmother, I can be aware of what’s going on in the world. While working, I ask Alexa to play the station’s classical and jazz programming. I’ve also re-kindled my interest in songs that were popular when I was growing up. So, I sometimes ask her for Amazon music stations that play 1970’s and 80’s music. I still have a radio/CD player combination that belonged to my late husband, but I rarely use it.


How about you? What do you remember about radios when you were growing up? Do you still use one today?

In my new novel, The Red Dress, my main character hears, on her college roommate’s radio, the song to which she danced with the boy of her dreams before catching him in the act with her best friend. I’ll be signing copies of this book on Saturday, August 24th, from 1-3 p.m. at Sheridan Stationery Books and Gallery, located at 206 North Main Street in Sheridan, Wyoming. See below for more information about the book.

This establishment has crated a Facebook event. Even if you’re unable to attend, please at least like the page and be sure to share it with your friends. Thank you.


New! The Red Dress: A Novel

Copyright July 2019 by DLD Books

Front cover contains: young, dark-haired woman in red dress holding flowers

When Eve went to her high school senior prom, she wore a red dress that her mother had made for her. That night, after dancing with the boy of her dreams, she caught him in the act with her best friend. Months later, Eve, a freshman in college, is bullied into giving the dress to her roommate. After her mother finds out, their relationship is never the same again.

Twenty-five years later, Eve, a bestselling author, is happily married with three children. Although her mother suffers from dementia, she still remembers, and Eve still harbors the guilt for giving the dress away. When she receives a Facebook friend request from her old college roommate and an invitation to her twenty-five-year high school class reunion, then meets her former best friend by chance, she must confront the past in order to face the future.


My Other Books


My Ideal Partner: How I Met, Married, and Cared for the Man I Loved Despite Debilitating Odds

Click to purchase My Ideal Partner from Smashwords absolutely free!

That’s Life: New and Selected Poems

How to Build a better Mousetrap: Recollections and Reflections of a Family Caregiver

We Shall Overcome

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Author: abbiejohnsontaylor

I'm the author of three novels, two poetry collections, and a memoir. My work has appeared in various journals and anthologies. I'm visually impaired and live in Sheridan, Wyoming, where for six years, I cared for my totally blind late husband who was paralyzed by two strokes. Please visit my website at:

13 thoughts on “My Radio Memories”

  1. Hi Abbie.
    Sounds crazy I know, but I still listen to the radio on my stereo. I also listen to digital radio, use the Tune In app, and at times, NPR 1. But, to me there’s still nothing better than flipping through the various stations on my stereo.
    Granted, it’s a big galoot of a thing with receiver, etc. But I enjoy using it.
    Sometimes I connect my phone to it and listen to the Tune In app through it.
    I also listen to my Amazon Prime videos there, and also my audio books.
    The tape deck was stolen right before I moved here, and the CD player gave up the ghost, but I still have the receiver, and big floor speakers, and when I play Apple Music through them it really can rock down the house.
    I suppose I could call myself a Mixed Radio listener.
    I do love NPR and listen to my local station.
    One of the things I love best about that local station is the guy who reads the local news. He sounds like the old time A.M. D.J.S reading the news. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. This sounds great, Patty. I’m glad you’re enjoying your stereo. Bill and I each had our own, but I rarely use them, now that I have my smart speakers, which sound just as good. If I wanted, I could put them in one room and have them both play music simultaneously. But it’s more convenient to have one in the living room, that I carry into my office and kitchen, and the other in my bedroom which I use prinarily as a clock radio, since my other one no longer works. Thank you for sharing.


      1. Hi.

        First, you’re welcome for the share.

        Next, I’d be curious to see if you could start them both playing at the same time. That would be a neat experiment. LOL.

        Lastly, reading over your post again as I was sharing it round reminded me of my little transistor radio I had as a kid. It had a little strap on it and I hooked it to the handlebars of my bike, and road all over the neighborhood listening to the A.M. Rock and Roll station while hanging out with my friends.

        We’d meet out behind my house in the afternoon, sit on this huge rock in the yard underneath the big shade tree, and wait for the contests to begin. When they’d give the alert to be the 25 caller of the day to name a certain song, we’d rush inside hoping against hope no one was on the phone and if the line was free we’d race to dial. Sometimes we won too and then my mom or dad would pile us into the car and take us downtown to collect our pries.

        Oh what days those were.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Patty, your story reminds me of a Mello Yello jingle contest a local station here in Sheridan had one summer when I was in high school. In case you’re not familiar with Mello Yello, it was soda pop that was yellow in color and tasted like Mountain Dew. I don’t think it’s around anymore.

    Anyway, the station played the jingle, and if you were the first one to call in and repeat it, you won a six-pack of the stuff. Naturally, I won.

    They did this many times throughout the day so there were plenty of opportunities to participate. One poor kid must have misunderstoon the rules because he called in with his own jingle. I don’t think he won.


    1. LOL.

      I love going down memory lane. Yes, I’m familiar with Mellow Yellow, and Yes they still sell it. It is Mountain Dew’s highest competitor. Coke makes it and Pepsi makes Mountain Dew. LOL.

      I love that part about the kid calling in with his own jingle. They should’ve given him a consolation pries for doing that.

      This reminds me of the McDonalds ad for big Mac in the 70’s You had to be able to recite the list of what was on the Big Mac. You won a Big Mac and fries. Of course this was in the days before the value meal. LOL.

      Oh how great.

      Our local classic rock station which I still listen to has contests, which reminds me it’s 2 for Tuesday and throughout the day they’ll play doubles. When they play just one song by an artist rather than two at a time you’re to call in to catch them. You have to be the first caller. I’ve won that many times. Think I’ll turn on the radio and listen.

      I’m friends with one of their DJS on Facebook, he’s the John Patrick that’s listed on my friends list. He’s actually their program director but he also DJS in afternoons. He and I go way back. LOL.

      This is a great fun post. Wish other readers would chime in. I know they’re reading along. LOL.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I love radio and have one of the first digital radios that came out in the kitchen, a new digital radio for christmas in the bedroom and radio / stereo in my computer room. I always listen to the radio when I’m cooking or doing the housework; music, dramas, interesting talk programmes.

    Liked by 1 person

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