The Last Nitestand
messages from April 195 to the present

"Nitestand" is the name Nitecaps gave to their local service organizations.
In 1975 there were over 80 registered Nitestands and thousands
of dedicated Nitecaps serving others "even less fortunate."

Only one Nitestand is left, the one here at www.Nitecaps.net.

Herb always believed that the Nitecap show was not "his" show, it was his listeners' show.

That's how I feel about this website too. This "Last Nitestand" page was the idea
of a Nitecap who looked over the main page at www.nitecaps.net and sent an email
to suggest we add a "bulletin board of letters from other Nitecaps."

If you would like to share your memories of the Herb Jepko Nitecap Show,
or your suggestions for creating this website, please send an email to

nightynitecaps@gmail.com


If you enjoy this website, then
please send a donation to
The Herb Jepko Scholarship Fund at the University of Utah.
800 716-0377
(801 581-6825 in the SLC area).
or
CLICK HERE TO MAKE A DONATION


If this is your first visit to The Last Nightstand, you might want to begin with

< Clicking here for MESSAGES from 1995 to 2005

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

and now to our
Utah, Indiana, Maryland, Idaho, Texas, British Columbia, California,
Florida, Missouri, Connecticut, Colorado, Alabama, Arizona, Wisconsin, Virginia,
Tennessee, Oregon, New York, Washington, Iowa, Nevada, Oklahoma and Ontario line . . .

(the 21 States and 2 Canadian Provinces represented by the Nitecaps who have written to us so far.)


80 total emails so far
(averaging one new email from a NiteCap about every other month)

2 January 2010, San Bernardino, California

This is a great idea! Nitecaps on Facebook!

I started listening in 1965 (I was 11) and sorta tapered off when the show went national via the Mutual network. It was a great show, and Herb was a great host. It's a shame that all one can find at night on the AM band are angry political commentary and paranormal and conspiracy theories (although, I will listen to Art Bell when he is actually on, as he modeled Coast to Coast on the Nitecaps). I miss all those warm friendly voices coming in at night over my old 1932 Troy radio, via KSL's 50,000 watt flame-thrower. Sadly, KSL, too, is all political rant and angst. Listening to The Nitecaps was just like sitting up late with your neighbors at the kitchen table chatting over coffee, and just enjoying the exchange and company.

I miss it!

Don

 

1 January 2010 Toranto, Canada

I used to listen to the Nitecap show on WHAS-840. I even called the show a couple times circa 1976.

Mike

 

16 December 2009 Golden, Colorado

My name is Dennis O'Brien.  I started listening to Herb at the age of 14 around 1965.  I was living in Grass Valley, California at the time and KSL was a nighttime favorite.  Listening to far away stations was a favorite thing to do and Herb's kind and soothing voice was a friend of mine.  Our part-time housekeeper was a card-carrying member, and I was for one year in the early 70s.

I just wanted to say THANK YOU(!) for preserving the memory of this wonderful ground-breaking gentleman.  I did call the show one time around 1971.  For the next few days I had friends and relatives from all over the west letting me know they heard me on the show.  Even a local telephone operator called the house later (I was acquainted with her) to ask if I had been on the NiteCap show, she said she was inundated with a dozen "information" calls wanting to know the number of the ham radio operator in Grass Valley named Dennis.  (she thought it was me, but in the absense of a last name was reluctant to give out the number)  I had mentioned my ham radio hobby while on the show.

I was wondering if there is still a Nitecap tribute organization?  I haven't studied your site very much yet, so the answer may be there. 

Thanks very much again,

Dennis O'Brien



20 November 2009

Hello......

I was so happy to see that there is a nitecaps site. I loved the nitecaps!!! I listened to it in the 70's as a teenager. I'd like to be in the nitecaps club. That would be awesome indeed.

I was sorry to hear Herb Jepko has passed away. Is there a show on KSL similiar to the nightcap show? In Salt Lake City.

I had forgot about Tinkerbell.....I taped them as a girl to listen to during the day, I have since erased them. I loved to listen every night.

I am glad there is a connection still to the nightcaps I love that site and the memories. I have shared it with my friends right along with the nightcaps theme songs!

All the Best!

Carol Freeman.

 

10 October 2009 Washington

Hello to everyone,

I was eating breakfast this morning and for no apparent reason, a memory popped into my mind of a radio show I used to listen to many years ago. At that very moment, I started humming this catchy tune from the show and realized that it was the Nitecap show. I listened to that show almost every night for several years. But that was back in the late 60s, possibly early 70s. I also recalled the AM radio station I would listen to. It was KSL in Salt Lake City, Utah. Although the signal was weak sometimes, I live out in the country, away from the city. So weak radio stations came through without having competition from the stronger signals of a large city.  

Our time zone here in Washington State made it possible for me to listen to the show at an earlier time so I could catch a few hours before having to go to bed. I could not stay up that late on weekdays because there was school in the morning. School, you ask? Yes, I was only in my teenage years during the time I listened to the show. Is it possible that I was one of the youngest listeners to the show? I will never know. But the people and stories that came across the air were very interesting and enjoyable to a teenager such as myself. I am 55 years of age now. Although I, like most teens, listened to pop, rock and roll of the era, this talk show interested me to no end. I remember tuning in at the beginning of the show just to hear that famous song that played at the beginning. And, of course, to hear that almost perfect radio voice of Herb.

I will forever have the memories of listening to the show late at night and the endless enjoyment of listening to people talking about life and just about everything. I remember being eager to see who would call next and what their story would be. I read many Internet articles on the nitecap show now that I have dusted out the attic of my memory. There was one comment I read that stated something about this kind of show not working in today's environment. I wouldn't be so sure about that... Yes, I agree that most talk show listeners want to hear controversial topics and the gossip style dialogue that is so prevalent in today's talk show world. But there are people like myself that long for the old days when there was just a simple show that lets people call in and share good things with others and just be friends. Just like on the Nitecaps Radio Show. I would love to see something like this appear again on radio. But one thing is for sure, there will never be another Herb Jepko.

Sincerely,

Harvey, from Washington State

P.S. Thanks for maintaining the Nitecaps.net site. As I sat down at the computer to search information to the show, I worried that the show's memory would be lost forever and I would find nothing. You made my day. Thank you so much.


3 July 2009

A few years ago, I was in touch with you after discovering your great tribute site to an era that has disappeared in talk radio.  I'm glad to see that you have brought the tribute back under a different URL.

Herb Jepko was ahead of his time with what he did for a national overnight audience.  Unfortunately as time went on, his contribution to radio was not appreciated by Mutual and the unfortunate way Herb wound up taking his career before he died.

I did occasionally call the Nite Cap show especially the one that ran briefly in New York on the former WRFM.  It was hosted by Gordon Owen.

WRFM was a beautiful music station that was owned by Bonneville International as was KSL.  It has been through many different call letter changes, owners and formats since the '60s.  Come to think of it, hasn't every radio station experienced that phenomenon?

Good luck with the site and keep it going.  In addition, I hope you are in better health these days.

Very truly yours,

Larry Stoler

P.S. My best to Patsy.



9 June 2009 Sacramento, California

Dear Sirs, I found a copy of the A Nitecap's Creed.  I thought it sounded like a good organization so I looked it up on the website.  I think this old thing, this copy of the creed on a hardboard with a hanger, would be something of intereest to auction off on your website for money for the scholarship fund.  I will mail to you this interesting thing and your group can do what you think is best.

Please reply with an address to mail this to, no strings attached as i just want to get this interesting thing to someone who will like it even more than me!  All in goodwill!  I am a Women of the Moose member, our slogan is faith, hope, charity.  Same good thoughts and kind actions. 

Well, let me know where to mail this creed. 

Best wishes, Cindi

 

17 February 2009

Wow I haven't thought about Herb for over 35-40 years I used to love listening to him.

Thank you

Dave

 

1 January 2009 Ponoka, Alberta Canada

Hi Joseph HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Last night, while waiting for the new year to arrive, for some reason I decided to do a search for Herb Jepko! WOW! It was SO great to hear his voice again. I was only about 10 years old when I discovered his show, and I only got to listen to it for about 3 years as a new AM station started broadcasting 30 miles from my home (on 1170 MHz) thereby wiping out KSL totally! I was able to call into the show and speak with Herb a couple of times, but up here in Canada, if you sat listening to a ringing phone on Direct Dial, about 45 minutes later you would be cut off by the phone company! Imagine the frustration caused by that! 

I learned that if I used operator assistance and explained to them why I was using them, they didn't charge me more to stay on the line until I go t through! Boy, I had some very LONG conversations with the phone operators! I also subscribed to the Wick and even had a couple of pen pals! A couple of them even holidayed up here in Canada and stopped in the little town where I live to meet me in person. (1974!) I will always have fond memories of the NiteCaps Show and Herb and Rex and "The Crusher" Doesn't time fly! The 1170 station just have their 35th anniversary last year so I was able to set my time lines. BTW I still have a few copies of "The Wick" Never to be gotten rid of! Glad I found your site, good luck, and now have I've found it, I'll be back here from time to time!

Jack Spink

PS. you can add my email address to this message. Please use jsconsult@bigfoot.com


12 December 2008, Salt Lake City

My name is Michael, I am 31 years old and have lived in Salt Lake City my whole life.

 I first heard Herb Jepko in the late '80's.  Believe it or not, he was playing music from the big band era and from people like Frank Sinatra and Nat King Cole on AM 1280 KDYL in the late evening.  That was my grandpa's favorite music and continues to be my favorite to this day, as my grandpa and I are very close. 

As a pre-teen I had no idea of Herb's national talk show career.

A couple of years after hearing Herb on KDYL, the 10 o'clock news happened to be on from what I believe was KTVX channel 4, and they did a piece very similar, actually, to the '79 documentary on your web site, announcing that Herb was resurrecting his show on K-talk, KTKK AM 630.  My grandpa and I had listened to Larry King's radio show some and I remembered I had enjoyed Herb as a music DJ and so decided to check out his talk show.  I fell in love with it!

This must have been the incarnation of the show that Rollye James mentioned listening to with Bill Drake driving through Utah during the show you were on with her in February of 2004 because I remember Herb saying at a particularly late hour one night that if they didn't get at least six calls during a particular time span they would switch over to Larry King or some recorded program.  He did get his six calls, by the way.

Herb's son Randy hosted portions of that particular show during the later hours of the night, and they did get some syndication.  They were on in Indiana, Yonkers New york, and they must have been on in some parts of Oklahoma and Kentucky because he got calls from there. 

I never dared to call into the show but I talked my sister Julia, who is three years older than me, into calling in twice.  The second call was aborted by our step-father walking in and her just hanging up because we were supposed to be in bed.

There was a guy named Homa Storm in Oklahoma who would play his organ and a lady named Wanda in Kentucky who would sing.  They talked about how neat it would be if they could get them on a conference call so Homa could play and Wanda could sing with his playing.  If they ever did it, I missed it.

The last time I heard Herb was as a DJ again, this time on KFAM AM 700 which played soft "music on hold" type stuff.  That must have been very close to his death.
In fact, he had been dead a couple of years before I found out about it.

I had got a job as a talk show host on the weekends on a station called KWUN AM 1230 "Radio One," and it was the one month anniversery of our station going on the air, so this would have been November of '98.  I had asked my listeners to share their favorite talk radio memories and I mentioned having listened to Herb Jepko.  I suggested that Mills Crenshaw, our program director, should try and get Herb onto our station.  Within a few minutes, of course, someone called and informed me he had been dead for a couple of years.  Imagine finding that out live on the air!

One of the most flattering compliments I received was while working at that station.  I filled in, a couple of nights, for the guy who did the all night show.  His name was Rand Breem.  I guess his brother, Ray Breem was a big time talk show host in San Francisco.

Anyway, Rand wrote me a letter. (I wish I would have kept it.) In it, he stated that he appreciated me filling in and that with my style of radio I could perhaps be the next Herb Jepko.
I've been totally blind since birth and am now part of a telephone system called My Telespace which is made up largely of blind people, a number of whom, like me, are radio nuts.  We've had a number of discussions about Herb Jepko.  There's a guy in his mid-fifties who goes by Frezno who can do an almost spot on impersonation of Herb.

Tonight, I couldn't sleep which is a lot more common than I'd like, and, just for fun, I decided to google "Herb Jepko" to see if I could find any audio clips or something, and came across your web site.

After the holidays are over, I definitely plan to make a donation to your scholarship fund so I can get that CD.

I can't wait to tell my friends on My Telespace about your project.  In fact, I've put the RollyeJames show up on my box there.  The number is (575) 464-8927, option 7.

I plan to put the three songs and the '79 documentary up there as well and tell people about your web site.

Well, I'm sure YOUR tinkerbell has been going off for a while now.  Although I was never a nitecap, if the show was still around, I definitely would be.

I wanted to thank you for keeping alive the memory of, perhaps, the best talk radio host in the history of the medium.

Sincerely,

Michael




20 October 2008 Ogden, Utah

I don't know if your question was actual or rhetorical, but EXTRA, the program that you have 10 minutes of audio from on your Nightcaps website, was a news magazine show that originated with KUTV-TV (then the NBC Affiliate) in Salt Lake City in the 1980's.  The host was Lucky Severnson, who later moved on as a reporter with NBC News.

I'm a 52 year old Baby Boomer who listened to the Herb Jepko and the Nightcaps show on KSL during sleepless nights as a young boy and teenager in the 1970's.  I knew the Official Song by heart and sang right along with it as I played it back on your site today.  Good luck with your work.

Vic



5 October 2008

Good Evening,

I would listen to the mutual broadcast of Herb Jepko at American University - the highest point in Washington, DC.  There I would play the theme song for everyone on the 7th floor of Hughes Hall.  It was 1976 and 1977.  I loved finding the station late at night and listening.

Many thanks for preserving it for posterity. 

Cheers to Mr. Jepko and his family.

Jane



4 October 2008

I listened to Herb and Nitecaps when I was a boy – on WBAL in Baltimore. I would listen on my transistor radio under my pillow – often after late Orioles games.  I always liked the Nitecaps and still remember the song.  Listening to Herb was one of the reasons I decided to major in Radio Communications in college.

Ken



17 September 2008

I listened to Herb late at nights in the 77, 78, 79 timeline. I just might have tape of hundreds of shows that I my late Dad would often tape. If you are interested let me know. I now live in the Salt Lake area, but at that time I would listen to him on KTRH in Houston. I was only 17 then but his show was addicting. Came by your site just surfing around and WOW, remembered part of my childhood. Anyway let me know.

Don



31 August 2008 Louisville, Kentucky

Greetings, Joe Buchman, keeper of the Nitecap flame. I've just perused your web site and listened to that Philadelphia segment and it was one of the most nostalgic and fun experiences I've ever had.

You may remember me. I am George Morrison, friend of Tim Gardner and unsuccessful aspirant in the field of radio (I ended up in print media instead, where I have done alright). Tim and I used to visit you atWXVW during the final days of Herb's misadventure with Mutual.

I called the show faithfully, often with Tim and Tim's brother Doug, during my high school years. I loved the show for its simplicity and Herb's soothing voice and civil manner. He and the show offered me, a very insecure youth, nightly reassurance, if I occasionally grew weary of hearing a virtual anatomy lesson of maladies: "I broke my hip last week... My mother had her gall bladder removed."

But that was part of the genre and the genuineness of the callers mirrored that of Herb. Consider that I listened for four years nearly every night and to this day do not know what Herb's politics were. With today's hosts, it usually takes four seconds to tell.

When I first heard Rush Limbaugh, my reaction was: "He's no Herb Jepko, is he?"

Regarding Herb's downfall, I realized intuitively -- although I knew nothing about radio economics -- that going with Mutual was a mistake. The network seemed to put a straight jacket on Herb and the show. He was losing control of the flow and spirit of the Nitecap Show, not just the sales.

Well, Joe, if you don't mind a little bit of old home week seeping into your website, e-mail me back. .

Take care, George.


 

26 August 2008 Tucson, Arizona.

Hello!

Wow was I thrilled to have found your web page. I remember the Nitecap show from when I was a very young boy. I would have a hard time sleeping at night and we had a five tube radio on the nightstand.  The Nitecap Show was fascinating to hear especially before the days of satellite feeds. Herb was always so polite and warm. Something that talk radio show hosts lack these days. Anyhow I did not mean to ramble on but just wanted to say thank you for having your web page up for all of us who recall Herb Jepko and Nitecaps.

Best wishes from Tucson Arizona,

Stuart



2 August 2008

Dear Joe,

I just read the article in Radio World and it brought back some memories I had forgot about. I was a fan of the Night Caps also. If the Night Caps ever start up again, please let me know. I have helped sponsor many of the more recent late night shows. I just wish our company was viable when Herb was on air.

Best Regards,

Bob Crane

Sincerely,

Robert C. Crane, President
C. Crane Company Inc.

(Bob,

Thanks so much for your email. I own a C Crane Radio (Thanks to your advertising on the Rollye James show.) I too wish there were someone on the air today doing what Herb was able to create with the Nitecaps, but with FM, Cable TV, the Internet -- I'm not sure that audience is out there anymore for that kind of show. Herb was a kind voice in the nitetime darkness -- one that was absent all these new media. C Crane radios are the best! Click on the photo of the CCrane radio below for more information about how to buy one for yourself.



 

14 June 2008

Good to see the site back up!  There needs to be a meeting place for us Nitecaps.

Please convey my warmest regards to Patsy, and tell her Herb's legacy lives on. 

Best Regards,
Keith Simon



11 June 2008, Ontario California

Hi!

This is an awesome site!

I started listening to the Nitecaps in 1965, at the age of 11, after my grandfather told me about it. I lived with my grandparents in Eagle Mountain, California (the Kaiser Steel mine), in the middle of the Chuckawalla desert. There was basically no AM reception during the day, even though the nearest broadcast station was only 60 miles away in Indio, California, so I radio was strictly a night time affair.

I started some informal DX’ing about this time using a mid-1930’s Troy table radio that had west-of-the-Rockies station markers on the dial, and KSL was one of them, (my other set was a late 40’s Emerson). To get my rock ‘n’ roll fix, I would listen to KOMA in Oklahoma City, and the Wolman from the outlaw XERF (or was he on XERB at the time?). But at 11:00PM PST I would dial into KSL and that is where it would stay for the rest of the night. I thoroughly enjoyed listening to all these other people from all over the country just casually chatting with Herb.

Eagle Mountain had a population of about 3300 people, (all Kaiser employees), and as a community it was very tight knit and upright. The Nitecaps felt like an extension of my community; like everyone that called in could have been a neighbor of mine. It was so informal and friendly!
 In 1966, my grandfather surprised me one day with my own Nitecaps membership card (I may still have it somewhere). I was now entitled to call Herb! (I didn’t actually call in until around 1972).

When I would go out of school for the summer, I would try to beat the night listening to Herb and the Nitecaps. I would tinker with model trains (I had a 4X8 layout over my bed), or flip through my catalogs from Allied Radio, and Lafayette, listening to all that was said. My friends at the time could not understand what I found so interesting about the Nitecaps, as it was mostly ‘old people’ calling in. I’d just shrug and tell them to listen for themselves. Some did, and also became fans.

 We did try to get some people together to start a Nitestand in Eagle Mountain. I don’t know if it ever happened, as I left Eagle Mountain in 1968. We moved back to the San Bernardino area, and AM radio was now available 24/7, but I still would listen when the conditions allowed.

 Just lately, I wondered what became of Herb Jepko and the Nitecaps, so I did a web search for the first time in awhile and found your site. I was excited to be able to hear the Nitecaps theme again. It brought back to mind the pleasant warm summer nights, and the glowing dial of my Troy radio in the dark. Happy days!

 I’ll be 54 this year, and have my own family, and currently work as a mastering engineer, and DVD author and editor (NLE) for a duplication firm in Ontario California,

Thank you for a great website, preserving the memories of Herb and the Nitecaps. Hopefully, in some attic somewhere, somebody still has a reel of tape with a complete broadcast. I know I would occasionally record the show, (3,600 foot reel at 1 7/8 IPS would get it all) so I could listen to it the nights it wasn’t on. But, being young, and short of money for blank tape, these were usually re-used to record more shows, and eventually to record music and such.

Keep up the good work on your site! Hopefully we’ll see some more memories posted from other Nitecaps soon!

Cheers!

Don

 


20 March 2008


The TV show EXTRA belonged to the Utah TV station KUTV.  Hope this helps!

Les Turner




19 March 2008

I just found your nitecaps site.   You have absolutely made my day.

I was a young teenager in the late 1960's....and somehow...someway....I happened upon the Herb Jepko's radio show.  I couldn't get it very often, because the radio signal where I lived in Northern California was sketchy at best....but I listened to it many many nights in the 1970's.  Herb's show left some kind of indelible impact on me.   So much show that almost 40 years later, I'm still thinking about it.   I had totally forgotten Herb's voice.    And when I went to your site and played the clips you have on your site....instantly...all the wonderful feelings and memories came back. 

I guess I am a sentimental fool....but I've never really had any problems admitting that.   I am just so grateful and delighted that you have kept the wick burning.    I'm sitting here smiling.  And I want to thank you for bringing this smile through your site.

Warmly,

Rich

9 March 2008 Richland Washington

I'm glad your site is up again. I have warm and fond memories of Herb and the program. He always had time to talk with me during the day, and he was kinder to me than many people. In fact, he was the father figure I wished I had had. In my book, there are only two overnight call-in programs in the history of radio: The Nitecap program, and its imitators. It was a very special and unique entity. We were fortunate and privileged to have had it and to have been part of it. Sadly, we shall  never see its like again.

When you see Patsy, please send my best wishes and let her know that the program is among my most cherished memories. It helped me through a very difficult period in my life. And, tell her I'd love to hear the sound of  Tinkerbell again.

Bob Paine


11 February 2008

My mother passed away recently and while going through her things, I found many copies of your magazine, the WICK that she had tucked away in a box, in the back of her closet.  They are in perfect condition.

If you are interested please contact me.

Thank you,

Sherry

(Note: The prior version of this website, www.nitecaps.org, was down for most of 2007 prior to being relaunched as www.nitecaps.net in early 2008.)

 

11 March 2006, Madison Indiana

When I was in Jr. High in the early 1970's, I occasionally caught NITECAP on WHAS-840 out of Louisville, Ky (probably during summer breaks) and now that I'm a real Night Owl & radio junkie, I wondered whatever happened to it. Googling didn't help as I was spelling it NIGHTCAP, even tho I also tried using the song lyrics. Finally, I found a site which also spelled it wrong but linked to your site.

I must confess, I wasn't really drawn in to the show- being even then into religious & political controversy & bizarre subjects, but I always found it a pleasant listen before going to sleep. Thanks for your site & your work to keep the NITECAP spirit alive- especially in putting up the song, which I always thought was kinda sweet.

And God bless Herb & Patsy!

Cedric Klein



31 January 2006 Spokane, Washington

I was a loyal fan towards the end of the Nitecap dynasty and used to listen to his show while working the overnight hours at a radio station here in Spokane Washington in the late 70's.

After discovering your web site and listening to the interview you did on the Rollye James show it brought back so many wonderful memories for both myself and my Mom, who is still alive and kicking at 85. At the time I really got into the nitecap's I was in my 20's and truly got hooked on the family of listeners.

I've working in radio for my entire life and at 47 am production director at Clear Channel radio in Spokane that owns six stations. I am production director and am in charge of all the commercials (and who voices them) on all six of our stations.

Randy

< Click here for our MESSAGES from 1995 to 2005

If you enjoy this website, then
please send a donation to
The Herb Jepko Scholarship Fund at the University of Utah.
800 716-0377
(801 581-6825 in the SLC area).
or
CLICK HERE TO MAKE A DONATION

 

Join THE LAST NITESTAND today.

If you would like your name, address, email, photo, or phone number
added to your message above, just let me know.

nightynitecaps@gmail.com
Joseph G. Buchman, PhD
175 Paradise Road
Park City, UT 84098