Radio and Records: Chicago Legend Landecker Joins WGN


In February 1972, a Top 40 radio battle waged in Chicago. ABC-owned WLS-AM 890 was on the losing side of a war for listeners with “The Voice of Labor,” WCFL-AM 1000. Under recently arrived VP/GM Paul R. Abrams, WLS went after the best talent available to set itself apart. This included replacing Kris Erik Stevens in the 6pm-9pm slot with a 25-year-old hot shot from WIBG-AM in Philadelphia.

The result? John Records Landecker, age 25, would quickly rise to international acclaim as one of the most highly regarded air personalities of the 1970s.

Now, Landecker is being called on more than 48 years later to once again put a spark in evenings for a Chicago AM in need of a lift.

That would be Nexstar Media Group-owned Talker WGN-AM 720, which will see Landecker take the 7-10pm CT slot as of Sept. 28.

His arrival is tied to a retooling of the station’s lineup, with Chicago’s Afternoon News taking the 4-7pm slot with market veteran Steve Bertrand at the helm, and Anna Davlantes serving as the 1-4pm host.

Landecker is no stranger to WGN, as he’s been a fill-in host at the spoken word station across the years. Now, Nexstar can say it has a NAB Broadcasting Hall of Fame inductee on the roster of its lone radio property, as Landecker was inducted in May 2020.

Beginning September 28, WGN Radio’s weekday programming schedule is as follows:

5am – 9am: Bob Sirott

9am – Noon: John Williams

Noon – 1pm: Wintrust Business Lunch with John Williams

1pm – 4pm: Anna Davlantes

4pm – 7pm: Chicago’s Afternoon News with Steve Bertrand

7pm – 10pm: John Landecker