I remember this show in the late seventies and early eighties. The performers included The Who, Rolling Stones, Bruce Springsteen, David Bowie, AC/DC, Elton John, Tom Petty, and more. You could tune in on the radio and hear concerts and interviews.
It all started on Feb. 18, 1973, when the King Biscuit Flower Hour debuted on the D.I.R. Radio Network…on FM stations across the U.S. The innovative Sunday night series featured recorded concerts and interviews with rock’s biggest stars. King Biscuit would expand its reach to more than 300 stations before it ceased the weekly production of new shows in 1993. Reruns continued until 2005.
The first KBFH show was broadcast on February 18, 1973 and featured Blood, Sweat & Tears, the Mahavishnu Orchestra, and Bruce Springsteen. Columbia Records was one of the sponsors of the first shows, along with Pioneer High Fidelity and Scotch recording tape.
The concerts were usually recorded with a mobile multi-track recording truck, then mixed and edited for broadcast on the show within a few weeks. In the 1970s, the show was sent to participating radio stations on reel-to-reel tape. They soon switched from tape to album and then to CDs.
Although closely associated with classic rock in its later years, the King Biscuit Flower Hour dedicated much air time to new and emerging artists, including new wave and modern rock artists in the late 1970s and early 1980s.
In 1982, a three-alarm fire damaged the Manhattan office tower that housed D.I.R. Broadcasting. Reportedly, many of the King Biscuit Flower Hour recordings were lost in the fire.
By the end of the KBFH series and the sale of its assets to Wolfgang’s Vault, DIR had impressively amassed over 850 rock concerts, approximately 200 live interviews, and almost 400 country music concerts, which the company recorded on its separate Silver Eagle brand, along with 150 comedy shows.
In 2006, the King Biscuit tape archives were acquired by Wolfgang’s Vault which began streaming concerts online and has made some available for download.
There weren’t many options back then to see or hear rock performers…Don Kirshner Rock Concert, Midnight Special, and some on SNL..and maybe a few specials.