The 7th annual Tennessee Radio Hall of Fame Induction ceremony was held on Saturday, May 5, at the Embassy Suites Hotel, in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Among the honorees inducted into the Hall this year are two African American luminaries, Clarence “Gilly Baby” Kilcrease and James “Super” Wolfe. The Tennessee Radio Hall of Fame, the “Preservationists of Tennessee’s Radio Legacy”, 2018 slate of Inductees consists of two Lifetime Achievement Inductees, six in the Career category, six in the Legacy Category, and the 2018 Legendary Station of the Year, 1300/WMAK – Nashville – “The All-Americans”.
The 2018 Lifetime Achievement Inductees are Charlie Monk and Dick Palmer. The 2018 Legacy Inductees are William E. (Billy) Benns Jr., David Earl Hughes, Jeff Jacoby, Martin Karant, John Lashlee, and Dick Layman. The 2018 Career Inductees are Billy Kidd (Winningham) , Clarence Kilcrease, Mary Glenn Lassiter, Joe Sullivan, David Tower (Milstead), and James “Super” Wolfe.
Clarence Kilcrease was nominated for Induction into the Tennessee Radio Hall of Fame by Tennessee Radio Hall of Fame member Sharon Kay and 2015 Tennessee Radio Hall of Fame Inductee Spider Harrison. Clarence is one of the city’s most legendary personalities whose work in the radio industry has impacted so many aspiring young dj’s and those wondering about a career in the industry. With a remarkable career in radio broadcasting which includes 44 years on air, decades in management and covers at least four music genres, he is still broadcasting daily after all these years, on the air from 2 pm till 5 pm Monday through Friday with the Gospel Avenue Show on 760AM The Gospel.
As a youngster in the business Clarence worked his way up the ranks at a time in radio when Blacks were few and far between as on-air personalities hired by the city’s white-owned stations. He has been instrumental in establishing and furthering the careers of many notable African American Nashville personalities including: (the late) Candy Man, T. Weakley (retired from 92Q), John Heidelberg (current owner of WVOL Radio Station), Damon King (formerly WNSG), Connie Denell (92Q), David Lane, Soul Finger (WVOL), J. Albert Brown, Gwen Dingle (92Q), Ron Youngblood, Ernie Alien(92Q), and Oprah Winfrey (WVOL) (and look where she is now), just to name a few.
Also known as “Gilly Baby” and “Momma’s Big Bouncing Baby Boy,” Clarence has served as Vice President and General Manager of 92Q and WVOL, program director / general manager and on-air personality for WNSG-1240 radio, and serves of the Advisory Board of Meharry Medical College.
Clarence has been the recipient of many awards for his commitment to the Middle Tennessee Area for such endeavors as: Spearheading numerous fund raising drives to assist families whose homes were destroyed by fire; assisting in raising funds for families who did not have insurance or funds to bury loved ones, and Raising funds to feed and house the needy. For over 20 years prior to the Christmas holidays Clarence and dedicated volunteers have been raising funds and sponsoring a gospel program to help the needy. Each year over 100 food baskets and toys are given to those in need.
Clarence truly believes in helping others. In recognition of his years of support and work throughout the community, this year the “Clarence Edward Kilcrease Communications Scholarship” was established to recognize him as he continues his commitment to helping others.
James “Super” Wolfe was nominated for Induction into the Tennessee Radio Hall of Fame by Steve Bowers and Tom Britt. His Radio Resume includes: WBHT Brownsville, TN; 1975 WDXI Jackson, TN; WTJS Jackson, TN; WJHR-FM Jackson, TN; and 1984-2000 WFKX Jackson, TN (owner). Moving to Jackson, TN in the late 60’s to attend Lane College, James at age 18 initiated a low-power FM station, WLCJ (Lane College Jackson), to broadcast to the campus. On July 16, 1977, he married the famed Queen of Blues, Denise LaSalle. February 1, 1984 at 6:01 a.m. WFKX-FM (Kix96) hit the air, as Wolfe and partners brought to Jackson the first full time black programmed station. August,1985, he created Feed the Need, not only to aid the less fortunate, but to encourage youth to avoid drugs and refrain from using violence to resolve issues. Recipient of the distinguished National Association For Equal Opportunity (NAFEO) award, presented annually to an outstanding alumni of an HBCU (Historically Black College or University). James and Denise have recently launched The Unity Project, focused on “putting unity back in community.”
2015 Inductee Spider Harrison is a well-loved radio personality, heard Mondays through Fridays 7:00 p.m. to Midnight on Hippie Radio 94.5 FM / Nashville (streamed live on the station’s website).