ksan jumpin suit 1960

KSAN Radio 1450
KDIA Radio 1310
Jumpin’ George Lawsuit
1960

ksan_jumpin-lawsuit_1960-03-30ksan_jumpin-lawsuit_1960-05-27

Mike Dix as Jumpin' George at KSAN in 1963
Mike Dix as Jumpin’ George at KSAN in 1963
The original Jumpin' George Oxford
The original Jumpin’ George Oxford

The above newspaper articles, from (at left) the March 30, 1960, and (at right) May 27, 1960, editions of the Oakland Tribune, reported on the lawsuit filed by Golden Gate Broadcasting, owners of San Francisco’s KSAN (1450 AM), against Oakland’s KDIA (1310 AM) and George Oxford to stop the venerable disc jockey from using the well-known “Jumpin’ George” nickname on the air.

According to the March 30 article, KSAN had obtained a temporary restraining order one day earlier barring Oxford from identifying himself on KDIA’s air as “Jumpin’.” The complaint noted that Oxford had been hired by KDIA on January 26, 1960, despite being under contract to KSAN.

As detailed in the May 27 article, the suit was resolved when Judge Joseph W. Murphy accepted an agreement between the two stations that allowed Oxford to legally work at KDIA beginning on July 1, 1960, but barred him from using either “Jumpin'” or “Ole” as part of his air name. More surprisingly, the agreement stopped Oxford from using his signature sign-off — “I love everybody … especially you, baby” — on the air until after January 1, 1961.

As a result of KSAN retaining the “Jumpin’ George” moniker, the station chose to hire a new morning personality, Mike Dix, who went on the air under that name. (A recording of Dix as Jumpin’ George is presented on the museum website as part of the KSAN 1450 Collection.)

Another revelation comes in the final paragraph of the earlier article, which notes the $200,000 “payola” lawsuit filed on March 28 by KSAN against Oxford and twenty unnamed record distributing and manufacturing companies. The suit charged that Oxford had “plugged” records on KSAN’s air time in exchange for payments from the record companies. This suit was covered in more detail by the Tribune in an article which appear in the March 29, 1960, edition. (See below.)

ksan_jumpin-lawsuit_1960-03-29

SOURCE: Articles courtesy of the Oakland Tribune; photograph of Mike Dix (from the July 1, 1963, KSAN Tuff Tunes Survey) courtesy of Steve Rood.

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