The Top DJs of the 60s
The most outstanding memory I recall about the 60s was the
DJs. As far as I am concerned today's radio DJs cannot match the wit, humor and fun that these jocks
brought to their broadcasts. (Perhaps I just don't get a kick out of crude humor on the air.) It was fun especially
when the phone calls to the station over a promotion tied up the phone lines and teed Ma Bell off. Their format was
original plus the fact the radio studio made many of the radio commercials themselves just added so
much more to the program. I remember growing up in a small town in Ohio listening on my transistor radio to a small
radio station WCOL located in
Columbus Ohio. Until FM was added, you couldn't receive a clear broadcast of
WCOL in the evening so you
relied on drifted radio shows from the likes of WLS in Chicago, WHK in Cleveland, WABC of New York, and other large city
broadcasts. Even though I did not live in those cities, I do remember these disc jockeys. I have
included some of them here as well as the DJs I have read and have heard about. Once again if
you have a DJ that needs to be recognized here please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and let me know and I will research
it and add this person. Please enjoy and feel free to make comments and suggestions in the Guestbook.
Robert W. Morgan
In 1965 Robert W. Morgan arrived in Los Angeles as the original morning "Boss Jock" at 93 KHJ. His "Good
Morgan" was a signature that awakened Los Angeles everyday. If you needed help on an exam or homework , Robert W
Morgan added boost with "Zap you've been Morganized." He left LA for what he thought was greener pastures but
returned and entertained LA for over three decades. He was a featured DJ on the "Cruisin" series. His
1965 "Cruisin" is one of the best in the series. On May 22, 1998 he lost his fight with lung
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Morgan Roger Christian/Robert W. Mogan/Real Don Steele
For more information and a
great bio on Robert W. Morgan visit his webpage.
Art Roberts is pictured here with the Byrds
while he was a DJ at WLS in Chicago.
Art was born and raised in New York City. He
attended Southeastern Louisiana University, in Hammond. While attending college there he met and married
Bobbi Voorhies, a New Orleans Southern Belle.
After graduation, Art and Bobbi headed across the border to Texas, where Art launched
his radio career in the thriving town of Atlanta and KALT. Art and Bobbi left Atlanta, for
KTBB, Tyler, then
KLIF, Dallas. His radio career
bloomed rapidly. They moved to WCUE, Akron, OH; WKBW, Buffalo, NY; and WLS, Chicago, IL, where they stayed for 10 years. Eventually, Art added WKQX, Chicago; WOKY and WBCS, Milwaukee, WI; KNBR and KNEW, San Francisco, CA; and
KLUV, Dallas and
KBUC / KXTN, San Antonio, TX to his
list of success stories.
Many of the radio stations with which Art has been associated
are recognized as legendary call letters in the broadcast industry. His experience has encompassed all areas of
broadcasting: talent, operations, sales, station manager, and general manager. Art passed away on March 6, 2002 at
the age 70 following a stroke. Click
here to visit Art's
Johnny Holliday is a broadcasting giant who
gained national fame as a top 40 Rock 'N Roll DJ with Cleveland's WHK. He was born in Miami, Florida and began his
broadcasting career in Perry, Georgia. At one time he was recognized as the number one Top Forty DJ in the nation.
He was the voice of the 60s TV show Hullabaloo which aired in 1965 to 1966. Also notable is that he was announcer
for the Roger Miller Show that aired on TV. Johnny also co-hosted the final Beatle concert held at Candlestick Park
in San Francisco. I frequently listened to Johnny Holliday from a drifted radio signal from WHK in Cleveland while
living in Circleville, Ohio and I have to say Johnny Holliday is one of my favorite DJs of all
For being one of the best in his trade he was
featured on "Cruisin 1964" which I believe is the very best of the "Cruisin'
For more information on
the legendary Johnny Holliday CLICK HERE.
Here to order his book "From
Rock to Jock."
WHK Color Radio Official Fabulous 50 Tunedex
I use to receive Cousin Brucie's broadcast in Ohio on a drifted
radio signal and enjoyed his show so much that I wished that he would come to Ohio to be a DJ. I finally tied
Palisades Park to New York after many years of listening to Freddy Cannon's song Palisades Park.
Bruce Morrow was born in Brooklyn on
October 13, 1937, and attended New York University. Morrow adopted the moniker "Cousin Brucie" in 1959, while working at WINS/New York. He left WINS
for Miami radio in 1961 before returning to WABC/New York, where he broadcast for 13
years. During his time
at WABC, "Cousin Brucie" was known for hosting the famous Palisades Park rock concerts,. In August of 1965, he had
the distinction of introducing the Beatles during their historic Shea Stadium concert. Footnote to Bruce Morrow is
that he played the magician in the movie "Dirty Dancing." Bruce Morrow was also elected to the Radio Hall of Fame
Wolfman Jack was undeniably the most hip
master of ceremonies we have known. To millions of us of Rock ‘N Roll radio of the 60s he spun the rhythm and blues
music that many white jockeys would not play. He loved the rhythm and blues music as evident when listening to his
broadcasts. Bob Smith alias Wolfman Jack grew up in one of the toughest neighborhoods in Brooklyn. His voice masked
his true roots. Many teens found him while scanning their AM radio while cruising Main Street U.SA. Most of his
audience never knew he was a white man. Wolfman was the master of entertainment as he broadcasted from Cuidad Acuna
Mexico, a 250,000 watt AM station which on a clear night reached the entire North America continent. . His howling
and grotesque broadcasts turned parents against him and just made him more popular with the teens. His fame grew
upon the release of George Lucas’ film"American Graffiti" where Wolfman played himself. George Lucas listened to
him while he was growing up and much in the movie is the recollections of George Lucas who wrote the
As the music changed rapidly in the 70s,
Wolfman had difficulty relating to the changes but the nostalgia need from his fans kept him deep in the roots that
he grew up with, the music of the 50s and 60s.
Wolfman died from a
heart attack after arriving home from an appearance on
promoting his book on July 1, 1995 at the age of
57. Visit Wolfman Jack's Online
Dr. Don Rose
Noted radio researcher Bill Earl called him "probably the
greatest air talent in the country....ever!" In a career that lasted 33 years and 28 days, Dr. Don was
honored as "Disc Jockey of the Year," while both on the East Coast (WFIL, Philadelphia) and the West Coast
(KFRC, San Francisco).
After four years at the University of Nebraska (he majored in
accounting!) Rose worked at KOIL, Omaha; KTSA, San Antonio; and KRNY, Kearney, Nebraska, and with the same
dismal result in each city; He was fired! It took several humiliating months to get another job, but Rose
ended up at KWMT, Fort Dodge, Iowa, where his luck changed; He met his one and only wife Kae, and by default,
inherited the morning show. ("Did you wake up grouchy, or is she still in bed?") Next Rose's career led him
to Duluth, Minnesota; ("It's hard to be funny when it's 40 below.....you look outside at your car and there's
a dog frozen to the wheel"). After five frigid years, he was off to Atlanta ("I said, 'Where do you do your
cotton-pickin'? And the boss said 'cotton pickin' what?"). Then came six very successful years in
Philadelphia; ("I spent some of my finest days in Philly.
All of this set Dr. Don up for the finest part
of his career. In 1973 he landed the morning show at KFRC in San Francisco, and what a run it was! KFRC was voted
"Station of the Year" four times by Billboard Magazine, with Rose as anchor. His morning program was #1 for a solid
decade! (Reprinted from the website Radio Broadcast Legends)
Notable credit to Dr.
Don Rose is that he too was selected as one of the top DJs in the nation and therefore performed on the Cruisin'
Series while a DJ at Atlanta's WQXI . Cruisin' 1967 demonstrates much of his wit and craziness. It is sad to say
that he passed away March 30,
A big thanks goes to Gay Goodwin Wallin for recommending Johnny
Rabbitt (Donald Pietromonaco) as one of the outstanding DJs of the 60s decade.
From 1963 -1969 Donald Pietromonaco was the personality known as
Johnny Rabbitt on St. Louis' KXOK-AM 630, nicknamed as "The Fun Spot." Beginning at 7 PM teenagers tuned in to hear
this award winning actor and personality. His show featured not only the Top 40 music but a mythical teenager known
as Bruno J. Grunion. (actually it was Johnny Rabbitt portraying this
teenager and nobody knew that). Donald Pietromonaco (Johnny Rabbitt) was
also inducted into the St. Louis Radio Hall of Fame.
In later years Pietromonaco worked in film, TV and
Sadly, Pietromonaco so fondly remembered as Johnny Rabbitt, passed
away April 18, 1997 at age 61.
I have received so
many request to honor Dick Biondi as one of the great Disc Jockeys of the sixties. He is an inductee in the
National Radio Hall of Fame and Dick Biondi is still broadcasting at the age of 83 doing an oldies show on WLS
He called himself “The Wild
I-tralian.” and was one of the original "screamers," known for his screaming delivery as well as his wild antics on
the air and off. In a 1988 interview, Biondi related he had been fired 23 times; both fits of temper and jokes gone
wrong were part of the tally. Over many years and many frequencies, Dick's close-of-the-program line was, "God
bless, bye, bye, Duke. Thanks a million for dialing our way." The early Rock and Roll era meant "record hops" where
disc jockeys would make personal appearances at local schools and clubs; they often included appearances by the
artists whose records were being played.] Biondi is credited as the first U.S. disc jockey
to play the Beatles, on Chicago's WLS 890 AM in February 1963, with the song "Please Please Me"
Dave Hull was voted as the top Los Angeles radio personalities of all time. Hull began his
radio career in Armed Forces Radio in Casablanca, Morocco and in commercial radio in 1955 at KGFL in Roswell,
New Mexico. He reached Los Angeles' KRLA in the summer of 1963 as weekend relief and went full-time
there in the 9pm-midnight slot by the fall of 1963. By the end of 1964, Hull's increasing popularity prompted
one young female fan, Suzie Cappetta, to write and record a song entitled "Dave Hull The Hullabalooer", which
quickly reached the local top 40 charts by early 1965. Hull became close with The Beatles during their 1965
and 1966 American tours. During that time, Hull taped approximately fourteen interviews with the band. He,
along with Bob Eubanks, planned The Beatles' 1966 concert at Chavez Ravine (Dodger Stadium). His work with the
band earned him the honorary title of "fifth Beatle." Hull worked closely with The Beach Boys, The Dave Clark
Five and The Rolling Stones during that period. In December 1965, Hull opened his "Hullabaloo" teen club on
Sunset in Hollywood. He got his nickname while working at WONE in Dayton, Ohio. Los Angeles radio
historian Don Barrett quotes Hull as saying: "A woman wrote me from a hotel outside Dayton to say she couldn't
stand all that hullabaloo. Well, Webster's defined it as a 'tumultuous outroar,' so I used
I recall Dave Hull when he was with WTVN in Columbus, Ohio before it changed
its format to classical music. If you want to really to follow the 60s from a DJs perspective check out
Dave's book "Hullabloo The Life and (Mis)Adventures of L.A. Radio Legend Dave Hull." I highly
recommend this for some reading enjoyment and a look back at the great 60s decade and