Saturday With Pat O’Day – JUNE 3rd


On Saturday , June 3rd 2017 , Pacific Northwest Legend Pat O’Day dropped by the Radio Enthusiasts of Puget Sound for an afternoon  conversation sharing fascinating stores of his life in radio and concert promotion.   Pat is well known from his days as the popular 1960’s afternoon DJ on KJR.  He would eventually become program director and general manager.  In 1964 and 1965, the national radio industry acknowledged his power, voting him top Program Director. In 1966, O’Day was voted “Radioman of the Year” and was also honored (along with a select few other iconic radio men) with his own volume of the popular Crusin’ LP series that featured his powerhouse patter wedged between compiled period hits. As Seattle’s highest-profile DJ of the 1960s and the region’s dominant dance promoter, Pat O’Day ran Northwest rock ‘n’ roll for nearly a decade. He is responsible for bringing the Seattle music scene to national prominence.

O’Day’s name became synonymous with KJR, the station he ran for a decade and built into an empire. To really understand his impact you’d have to consider the power of that station back then — it was not uncommon for KJR to boast of a 37 percent rating, an unheard of dominance by a radio station. Today that rating would be more than the market share of the top seven local stations (KMPS, KUBE, KVI, KIRO, KBSG, KRWM, and KWJZ) combined!

Teen dance club business in Oregon and Washington States

Beginning in 1956 at the Astoria, Oregon National Guard Armory, Pat’s teen dance clubs (admitting only teens aged 15–20, and providing security) started out as, “Pat O’Day Dances.” The following year it moved to the Kelso, Washington, National Guard Armory, then expanded to Bremerton, Tacoma, Lynnwood, and then to Bellevue (Lake Hills Roller Rink).  Eventually teen dance clubs were also established in Olympia, Mount Vernon, Burlington, Westport, Tri-Cities, Yakima, and the north Seattle dance club “The Bummer”.

The flagship dance club was known as the Spanish Castle (located near the intersection of old Highway 99, now Interstate Highway S, and Kent-Des Moines Road, in Sea-Tac, Washington), and operated from 1959 until its closing in 1964 .  Famous artists who performed there include; Jan & Dean, the Venture’s, Larry Coryell & The Dynamics, Merrilee Rush, Paul Revere & The Raiders, the Kingsmen, the Beach Boys, the Sonics, the Wailers, Conway Twitty, Roy Orbison, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Jimi Hendrix.

In 1968, the dance club business was sold to Lester Smith and Danny Kaye along with local businessman, Mack Keith

Pat O’Day & Associates and Concerts West

O’Day is the founder of what started out as Pat O’Day & Associates (POA), with Dick Curtis and Terry Bassett as principals.  In 1967, after opening a new regional operation in Dallas, Texas, POA changes the name to Concerts West (CW), becoming the largest concert company in the world, at that time.

Concerts West client roster of touring musicians/groups, mentioned in O’Day’s autobiography, included many well-known artists and bands of the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s (here, most famous listed alphabetically); the Beach Boys, the Beatles, Bachman-Turner-Overdrive, Bad Company, Bob Dylan, Bread, the Byrds, Canned Heat, Cat Stevens, Chicago, Country Joe & The Fish, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Donovan, the Doors, Elton John, Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra, Glen Campbell, Grand Funk Railroad, Jefferson Airplane, Jimi Hendrix, John Denver, Led Zeppelin, Linda Ronstadt, Moody Blues, Neil Diamond, Paul McCartney & Wings, Paul Revere & The Raiders, Steppenwolf, Stevie Wonder, the Supremes, The Doobie Brothers, The Eagles, The Mamas and the Papas, The Monkees, Paul Anka, The Rolling Stones, The Who, and Three Dog Night.

Listen to the conversation with Pat O’Day from Saturday June 3rd, 2017

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