Wednesday, July 04, 2018

WEEU Feedback Journal

This is a particularly unusual piece of radio ephemera from 850 WEEU-AM. Most book sellers list it as trade paperback size; this is a little misleading. Most trade paperbacks are 9" x 6"  mass market paperbacks are "6.75”  x 4.25 wide. These are 8.5" x 5.5" which is exactly the size of the Farmer's Almanac which they are designed to emulate. Various covers include clip art from the 1800s, hex signs, farm animals, and rustic fonts. The 200 and 2001 issues switch to black & white photography; one notably of a man fishing. The 1996 and 1995 issues describes it this way:
"A compendium of facts, fun, recipes, remedies, puzzles and pronouncements as culled from the popular talk show Feedback and radio station WEEU in Reading PA."
I have found images of issues from 1995, 1996, 1997, 1999 and 2001. Booksellers and worldcat  list all of those and also the 1998 issue. A single sketchy website flugbereit.com, lists the 2000 issue. Altogether there appear to have been seven issues.

The journal was the work of the host of Feedback, Jack Holcomb. The 2995 issue at least was edited by Charles J. Adams III, who was a also connected to WEEU, and a published author in his own right [LINK].  Mike Faust hosts the program today [LINK]. The program has changed with time of course. Today's topics include: politics, national and state news, and local events... but he hasn't entirely gotten away from gardening, home-remedies, and the melee that is every call-in radio talk show. When Holcomb passed the baton to Faust, WEEU stopped printing the publication.

Holcomb started out as a wee little Ithaca College graduate on WEEU working a 4:00 PM to Midnight shit in October of 1956. He played music and delivered the the news. After 44 years on WEEU, Jack Holcom retired to a quiet corner, Saturdays 8:00 AM - 10:00 AM with a talk show about bird-watching. The show isn't exactly new. Jack has hosted it for decades. Back in the day it broadcast from 11:00 AM to 11:30 AM, Monday thru Friday. From 1965 to 1972 the program was called "The WEEU, Birdwatching Society", then he re-named it simply "Birdtalk."  The modern incarnation is called "Jack’s Backyard".