News

The First Black Owned And Operated Detroit Radio Station Was On East Grand Blvd: Black Music Month

Monday, June 30, 2014


By Roger McClellan, Serena Maria Daniels & Terry Parris Jr.


For Black Music Month we put together a five-part video series of sites significant to Black Music around Detroit. We visited a site where Miles Davis used to play. We went to the place that housed the first African American owned and operated radio station. We popped into the old Phelps Lounge where James Brown once graced the stage.

Below is a story on the first radio station in Detroit to be owned and operated by African Americans. Dr Wendell Cox and Dr. Haley Bell started WCHB in the 1950s using their initials as the call letters. During the '60s and '70s it became known for playing some of the best R&B music and hosted radio personalities like Jay Butler, Ed Love, Butterball Jr. and Martha Jean "The Queen". Click play below to get the full story.

(Check out the full series here.)

Bell Broadcasting – 2994 East Grand Blvd





We also mapped the stories to show where they were throughout the city:



(Don't forget to check out our first series highlighting five spots around Detroit significant to Black History Month, also with Ken Coleman.)