Sid Mark R.I.P
By Bob Small
Whether or not you believe Frank Sinatra was one of the greatest singers of the last century — I don’t know why you wouldn’t — only he had a devoted radio presence for 65 years in the persona of one Sid Mark.
Most recently, Sid Mark of Bryn Mawr presented his Sunday with Sinatra on 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on WPHT 1210 AM –the same station as Dom Giordan.
Sid Mark Fliegelman died on April 18 at the age of 88. He began airing Fridays with Frank, in 1957 over WHAT am and fm and continued airing his shows over various stations and/on various days until April 17 of this year.
There is plenty more information over these websites.
Personally, he was one of the two weekly shows that I had to listen to. Sid Mark had a wealth of knowledge and information about the whole Sinatra clan and, more importantly, about the recordings, bands, record labels, etc. To keep this in context, as a soloist, he released 59 albums and 297 singles, not counting what he did with Tommy Dorsey’s big band and The Pied Pipers, etc. (Note; there is some dispute over how many actual songs he did release, whether you count remakes of previous songs, etc.) The citation for this post is Wikipedia. The most unusual album he ever did was Watertown, a “concept album”.
Sid’s show, at it’s zenith,was carried over 100 stations. Now there are other shows, on both broadcast and Sirius, that focus on Sinatra or Sinatra and friends, but this was the original.
In the meantime, another Delaware Valley personage, who has been broadcasting the same format for almost the same time is one Jerry Blavat. He started in 1958 broadcasting what we call either “doo-wop” or“accapella”. He has been on numerous stations and he knows many of the acts, both old and new, and much of the history, especially the local history (Cameo-Parkway records, Chubby Checker, Bob Horn of Bob Horn’s bandstand, later taken over by a young kid named Dick Clark, etc.)
Currently, Jerry Blavat has a Saturday evening show (6 to 7 p.m.) on WXPN and a daily Monday to Friday show (5 to 7 p.m.) on 92.1 WVLT He’s only 81 as of this writing.