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The Pop Chronicles are two radio documentary series which together "may constitute the most complete audio history of 1940s-60s popular music." They originally aired starting in 1969 and concluded about 1974. Both were produced by John Gilliland.
In 1972 Gilliland had produced and syndicated 12 episodes which covered the first half of the 1940s. He then asked his listeners to write to their stations if they wanted to hear the rest of the series. He would produce another 12 episodes to cover the rest of the 1940s.
This series was syndicated by Doug Andrews and broadcast on AFRTS. In 1973 MCA Records used the show to sell a nine-album set of music from the show, so the show could be offered for free to radio stations. But in 1974, RCA negotiated for the rights to the show.
In 1994, Gilliland released an edited version as the four cassette audiobook Pop Chronicles the 40's: The Lively Story of Pop Music in the 40's. This was later rereleased as The Big Band Chronicles.
After his death, Gilliand's sister donated the Pop Chronicles tapes to the University of North Texas Music Library where they form the John Gilliland Collection.
Gilliland, John (1997). "On Chronicling Pop". In Barrett, Don (ed.). Los Angeles radio people: Volume 2, 1957-1997. Valencia, CA: Db Marketing. ISBN978-0-9658907-0-0. OCLC38994418. (The pages in this book are not numbered, but Gilliland's essay is located between the E and F entries.)
^Jim Carnegie (March 21, 2006). "RBR epaper, Volume 23, Issue 56". rbr.com. Lake Ridge, VA: Radio Business Report. Retrieved 2020. Chester Coleman, who was both a station owner and media broker passed away last Friday in San Francisco