Jeff, you're just a wee bit off in your timeline of WCAU 1210. Many of us were never comfortable with it as a NEWS station! It was one of (if not thee) nation's 1st talk station dating back to the early 60's marketed as WCAU 121. (One To One talk) There were stringent FCC regulations of tapping into AT&T and Bell Telephone lines, and they worked around it by technically 'not' being connected directly by having the outside call lines wired through isolation transformers. The callers heard a 400 cycle beep every 15 seconds to let them know they were on the air or being recorded. The beep was eliminated through a notch filter, and all was fed through a "B-Cart" tape delay. I remember the 121 billboards on the Walt Whitman Bridge and full page ads in The Evening Bulletin. They did clear almost every CBS Radio Network feature and News as well. They didn't go News head to head against KYW until the early 70's.
Prior to the all news format, WCAU-AM was not one of those stations on my radar as I lived in Newark prior to 1970. The idea of 1-2-1 is creative in just name alone. I love it.
I had cousins in Norristown and was much more familiar with WFIL and WIBG on radio, and Sally Star on TV during the 60's. The news/talkers in Philly were not interesting to me because, as my Grandfather used to say, "Philadelphia was that small town down the street". After 1970, is a different matter and after I returned to New Jersey in 1979, (at the time) #4 market became more appealing.
Jeff in Sa-ra-so-ta!