People have tuned in for nearly 45 years to Sal Patitucci and his “Radio Italia” program. The program is considered the only daily, hour-long Italian music program in the nation. “Music is a mood,” Patitucci told YourFoxChapel.com, “It is universal. The world is changing every day and people want to know the music.” While mass immigration from Italy has tapered off over the years, the program endures and the host attributes that to the public’s deep devotion to Italian culture and the pleasure of music. It attracts not only those who are looking for the connections to their homeland but also epople seeking alternative programming.
The program began on October 11, 1964 after Patitucci talked to the general manager of WKPA-AM (1150) in New Kensington. The GM told him if he could sell five advertising slots, the program could start anytime. It took him two weeks to sell the time. Over the years, the show hopped from one station to another – WDUQ-FM (90.5), WYEP-FM (91.3), WHJB-AM (620) and has spent the last 22 years on WEDO-AM (810).
Patitucci and his wife, of Aspinwall, emigrated here in 1960 from the Calabria region of Italy following his parents who came here years earlier. He is a retired flood management engineer from the Army Corps of Engineers in Pittsburgh. At 72, the host shows no signs of slowing down and plays in ameteur tennis tournaments.