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Chester Smith


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Durant, Oklahoma according to his memorial program, but some publications have listed Wade as his birthplace. Wade is a few miles east of Durant. His musical career took him to the central valley of California where he became not only a local music legend, but also a very astute business person.

Chester started his long musical journey when he was just seven years old. He was first heard on the air in 1943 over KTRB in Modesto, California as part of a children’s broadcast. He began his disc jockey program when he was just 15 years old.

He was signed to a recording contract by Capitol Records in 1953.

In the middle 1950s, he was being heard over KTRB. His personal appearances saw him entertaining audiences on a regular basis at the Riverbank Clubhouse in the small farming community back then of Riverbank, California - just north of Modesto. Another popular group on the station at the time had a show that preceded his, Maddox Brothers and Rose. Imagine what that must have been like to live in Modesto back then to hear that kind of entertainment on the radio?


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