Monday, January 24, 2011

RIP, Ruth Meyer ...

From Tom Taylor:

Ruth Meyer, “a true inventor of top 40” and a nurturer of talent, has died.

Ruth was seemingly everywhere in the explosive developmental days of top 40 – working alongside pioneer Todd Storz at WHB, Kansas City in the 1950s, then jumping right to New York's WMCA when it imported manager Steve Labunski. She was brought in as promotion director, then advanced to PD. and adapted the "Good Guys" idea that WABC had toyed with. Ruth went on to work at WHN, WNEW-AM and ABC Radio.

Consultant Walter Sabo worked with her at ABC and passes along the news of Ruth’s death. He describes her as being “from the Midwest, a good Catholic girl with a bawdy laugh…She coaxed, joked, teased and made you feel good. You did what she wanted because she knew her audience and you wanted her to be happy.” Sabo says being around her was “a front-row seat to a master class.”

Meyer brought Gary Stevens to WMCA in 1965 to do evenings and "Good Guy" Stevens says “she was a great lady. Some years later, I returned the favor by making her station manager at WHN, when Doubleday bought it.” By that time, Stevens was running the Doubleday radio group.

In 1968, Meyer left to begin consulting, working with international clients such as Radio Caroline and Radio Luxembourg. To sum up - Walter Sabo says “Ruth Meyer was a true inventor of top 40…She says she was taught, directly, by Todd Storz. She always said ‘It was all Todd.’ But it wasn’t.”

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