In April of 2004,
Country 107-5), Charleston, SC Program Director Bob McNeill and I traveled to
TM Century (now TM
Dallas, Texas to have a jingle package sung for the station. The package was
Pride, originally done for 50,000
watt AM country music station WSM-AM in Nashville, Tennessee. It features
real country music instrumentation, along with the "classic" Dallas
7-voice sound (including legendary bass singer Jim Clancy) as well
as male and female soloists. (The female solos were done by country music
star Janie Fricke,
who lives in the Dallas area.) WNKT was the first station after WSM to
have this package.
Listen to the TM Century
For a serious radio jingle collector like
me, it was a real treat to watch and hear the jingles being sung live. Due
to vocalist availability, the male solos (done by
Marty Heddin) were sung earlier in the week so
we missed seeing those done. However we got to be there during all the group
sings, which were followed by the recordings of Janie's solos.
These singers are real pros. While that big
Dallas 7-voice sound is actually 21 voices (the group stacks their vocals
three times) I don't think any stacking instance took over three takes. After the group sings were done, we had the group do several
shouts of DJ names and station slogans. Those were almost always done on
the first take, but each shout was overdubbed once to give them a
Montage of TM Century "Pride" cuts for
The jingles were recorded between 10:30 and
12:30 on Friday, April 2. Mixing began around 3:00, and Bob and I each had
a CD of all of the main cuts by the time TM Century closed at 5:00. On
April 14 we received three finished CDs from TM Century. One
contained all of the main cuts along with mixouts and shouts, while the
other two held the M-Power versions of the jingles. Not only were all of
the mixed and acapella jingles on the discs in .wav format, but each
individual component of the music beds was provided as a .wav file. This
lets one use a program like Cool Edit Pro or Adobe Audition to remix the
jingle beds to their heart's content. You could turn up the drums, re-pan
the steel guitar, take out the dobro, etc.
Very slick packaging on the final CDs too.
Instead of coming in a typical hard plastic jewel case with a separate cue
sheet, they were contained in a soft, clear plastic container similar to
the ones that hold DVDs. The cut list was on the case's full color heavy
I hope you enjoy these photos I took of our
The building that houses TM Century: 2002
Academy, Dallas, Texas
TM Engineer Tom Cusic recording a female solo vocal (Annagrey
LaBasse, who later was part
of the group that sang WNKT's jingles) in
one of TM Century's secondary control rooms.
LaBasse recording a solo jingle performance
Chief Engineer Dave Giangiulio at the
console for the main TM Century studio.
Another view of Dave at the board looking
into the studio
where the jingle singers are ready for another take.
A TMCI engineer working on one of the
company's imaging products
This TMCI engineer was in
charge of mastering HitDiscs and GoldDiscs.
One of the TMCI
The equipment rack directly behind the main
Yes, even in this computer age, this
multitrack tape machine still gets used from time to time.
It's in an
equipment room directly to the right of the control room.
A rack of digital tape decks in the
aforementioned equipment room.
Some of TM Century's master tapes
Even more master tapes
This is the room where TM Century duplicates
their CD demos, GoldDiscs, HitDiscs, etc.
Here's another view of the CD duplication
room showing the equipment used to label the CDs.
One of TM Century's warehouse rooms where
imaging libraries are ready to be packed and shipped.
This group of storage racks holds GoldDiscs,
anxiously awaiting customers.
This is just a small part of TM Century's CD
library, where "store-bought" and
record company promotional CDs are
stored. (And I thought I had a lot of CDs!)
Here's a shot of the jingle singers at work.
This picture was taken
through the glass from the control room.
Another pic of the singers, this one shot
in the studio.
And the (jingle) hits keep comin'!
More jingle singing,
WNKT PD Bob McNeill in the TM Century control
room giving guidance to the singers over the intercom.
John Quincy standing next to a jingle
legend, Jim Clancy. Jim sang for
PAMS in the 1960s and still sounds
great today...and is a heckuva nice guy!
L-R: Kay Sharpe,
Annagrey LaBasse, John Quincy,
Debby Hooper, Jim Clancy, Johnny Hooper, Steve
Hass and Greg Clancy. (Greg was the
Here's a shot of Janie Fricke, taken
from the back of the studio.
You can see the glassed-in control room on
Janie Fricke getting ready to sing the first WNKT
John Quincy with Janie Fricke
John Quincy and Janie
Bob McNeill with Janie Fricke
A final note: Bob McNeill and I spent an enjoyable
15-20 minutes with Janie in TM Century's "green room" before the session
talking about her country music and jingle singing career. Janie is as
sweet and gracious as you'd expect her to be. Janie started singing radio
jingles in the late 1960s for Pepper-Tanner in Memphis, and then a short
time later for the original TM Productions in Dallas. (She's featured on
one my favorite early 1970s TM packages, "Where Your Friends Are.") Janie
also sang in Los Angeles and, of course, Nashville.