Special guest blog by former WEXL disk jockey Jack North about his days working for the No. 1 country station in Detroit 1966-70.
Last June marked the 41st anniversary of a Detroit country music fair honoring the 50th anniversary of WEXL radio, Royal Oak.
During the 1940s, one of the best-known voices of Detroit radio was the mellow baritone of John “Smilin’ Red” Maxedon. He sang cowboy songs with reassuring ease over WJBK and WJR stations every day. In 1946 he began cutting records for the Detroit-based Arcadia company.
1949 was a banner year for the three-year-old Fortune Records company in Detroit. Billboard magazine reviewed several country platters that Fortune issued by Detroit artists, including the only one ever made by Skeet Ring. Ring’s disk was also the last commercial record made by a country music pioneer.