Title: Jack Gibson remembers Martin Luther King, Jr.'s recognition of Black Radio's crucial role in the Civil Rights movement
Creator: Smithsonian Productions
Date Created: 1993-09-14
Physical Dimensions: WAV
Transcript: We had a convention of disc jockeys in Atlanta in 1967. And he [Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.] was our keynote speaker. And he mentioned that the Black broadcaster in this speech was responsible for the Civil Rights Movement. And if it had not been for the prominence of Black personality disc jockeys at different places throughout the South, that the Movement never would have gotten started.
You gotta understand that we were the voice that the people listened to. And if you gave us a message to say, "There will be a meeting tonight of SCLC at say, First Baptist Church." Well then, if you gave that, and it said that, we would just go ahead and elaborate all around it. And do our own thing by saying, "Now look. You've heard me mention it to you before that we're gonna have a meetin' tonight at seven o'clock at the First Baptist Church over there on Hunter Road. Now you know, I know how you all are. You have a time called CP. And you know what I mean when I say CP. So now let's - the Reverend King says we gonna meet at seven o'clock. Don't be come showin' up at no seven thirty and eight o'clock, and all stuff like that. Come on at seven o'clock and be there 'cause this is an importance for me, and you, and for our children. Y'all understand me?"
And that would be one of the ways that we'd be able to personalize the message that was given to us to give to our audience.
Special collection number: SC 39
Special collection name: Black Radio: Telling It Like It Was