Los Angeles Radio People, O
Compiled by Don Barrett
send updates and changes to AvilaBeachdb@gmail.com
O, Steven: SEE Steven-O Sellers
O'Brien, Bob: KOLA, 2001-04. Last heard, Bob worked at WJRZ/fm in New Jersey. He's written 7 books about tv and music.
O'Brien, Jim: KBBQ, 1967; KHJ, 1969-70. During a Philadelphia station promotion in 1983, Jim parachuted out of a plane with another guy, and their cords became tangled. Jim cut his own cords and fell to his death thinking that the two jumpers could not both survive. It was his 814th jump.
O'Brien, Pat: KLAC, 2010-13. The sports/entertainment veteran joined the Loose Cannons show at KLAC in late summer of 2010 and left in 2013. He released an autobiography, I'll Be Back Right After This, in 2014.
O'BRIEN, "Big" Ron: KFI, 1979-81; KROQ, 1981; KIIS, 1982-87; KKBT, 1989-91; KOCM/KSRF, 1991-92; KIIS, 1992-93. Ron was a dj at KFI, KROQ, KIIS (also pd), KKBT, KOCM/KSRF and back to KIIS. He died April 27, 2008, from complications of pneumonia. He was 56. Most recently he had been working at KOGL-Philadelphia
Born in Des Moines, Ron was the md at WFIL-Philadelphia before coming to Southern California in 1979. His earlier stops included WCAR-Detroit, WRKO-Boston, WCFL-Chicago, WPGC-Washington, DC and WNBC-New York. In the summer of 1981 Ron worked as Eugene Oregon at KROQ. When doing research for Los Angeles Radio People, he commented that he was "#1 rated for 14 consecutive ARBs during the glory years at KIIS." In 1988 he went to WKBQ-St. Louis. For seven years he hosted the nationally syndicated CHR show "On the Radio," which was heard on over 200 stations coast to coast.
In the fall of 1991, “Big Ron” was part of the launch of "MARS/fm" and later he worked at KKBT as afternoon drive personality. In the '90s Ron worked for KZDG-Denver and KKBH-San Diego. In the summer of 1996 he went to afternoon drive at WYXR (“Star 104.5”)-Philadelphia.
O'Brien, Scott: KORG, 1973. Last heard, Scott was working at KXDC-Monterey.
O'Connor, Ken: SEE Bob Allen
O'Connor, Mike: KGBS, 1975. Unknown.
O'CONNOR, Larry: KABC, 2019-20. Larry joined a re-vamped lineup at KABC in early 2019, working 10 a.m. - noon, while continuing to do a show from WMAL-Washington, DC.
He began his radio career on Internet radio in January 2010 on BlogTalkRadio. A year later Larry began filling in for many terrestrial radio shows and stations including nationally syndicated shows like Dennis Miller and Hugh Hewitt.
Born in Detroit he attended high school in Corona Del Mar. He's written for Andrew Breitbart's Big Hollywood site under the pseudonym Stage Right. In June 2011, O'Connor was promoted to the editor-in-chief of Breitbart.tv.
O'Connor, Pat: KNAC. "Pounding Pat" sells CDs and records.
(Mike O'Neil, and Ozomatli)
O'DONNELL, Charlie: KRLA, 1964-67; KGBS, 1968-69; KLAC, 1969-71; KBBQ, 1971; KLAC, 1984-89. Charlie was one of those rare renaissance men with numerous careers and he excelled at all of them. He was the original sidekick to Dick Clark on the decades-long, successful American Bandstand. He was part of the KRLA Top 40 jock team on stage at the Hollywood Bowl to introduce the Beatles. For three decades, he was the announcer on Wheel of Fortune. In the mid-90s, Charlie was the voice of the Academy Awards telecast for two years.
Charlie knew early on that he wanted to make radio his life’s work. When he was 12 or 13 his sister was working in downtown Philly across the street from radio station KYW. She was asked to be part of a team representing her company, Du Pont, in a city-wide spelling bee. She asked Charlie if he would like to go along to see a live radio show. When they arrived he was impressed with the well appointed studio and once they were seated, a handsome man came out to the stage microphone and talked briefly with the audience, telling them what to expect and not to help the contestants. Theme music started and the man put his hand to his ear, ala Gary Owens, and opened the show. “I said to myself, ‘That’s what I want to do.’”
WHAT-AM, a 250-watt black radio station in Philadelphia, was where Charlie started his career. When Storer bought WIBG, it became the city’s first rock station. Charlie was named news director. Charlie was the morning newsman with Tom Donahue. “We became great friends,” said Charlie when interviewed for LARadio. “He was the Orson Welles of rock and roll radio. He had that marvelous stentorian voice.”
A neighbor friend of Charlie’s encouraged him to audition at a local tv station for an announcer position, which he got and his first assignment was the announcing job on American Bandstand with Dick Clark hosting. “Dick and I hit it off immediately. If anything, I’ve learned so much about the business from him. I still consider him one of the greatest commercial announcers of all time. He’s certainly one of the great businessmen.”
The timing of American Bandstand certainly worked, as rock ‘n roll music had not only peeked behind the entertainment curtain, but arrived as it rocked around the clock. Before he knew it they had moved to Los Angeles, Clark believed the music trend was moving as the Beach Boys, Righteous Brothers and Jan & Dean were topping the charts.
One night at the local watering hole for radio/tv people, Martoni’s, Charlie met the man who would be responsible for his greatest radio experience. Reb Foster was the pd at KRLA, which was in a Top 40 battle with Chuck Blore’s KFWB. “My three years at KRLA were sensational. Casey Kasem was doing his bios. The Hullabalooer, Dave Hull, was the silliest son of a gun I ever heard. He was unreal. If I was a kid in this city, there would be nobody else in this city that I would listen to. Dave Hull was the best. And Bob Eubanks was slick. He knew what it was all about. Bob was the Dick Clark of radio for the West Coast. I found myself in the middle of these people and wondered what the hell I had gotten myself into.”
Charlie was between jobs when he ended up as the staff announcer at KCOP/Channel 13. “I would do three newscasts a day for ten years, host Dialing for Dollars, and then the afternoon newscast. I always liked news. I have some kind of affinity for it and I took it very seriously when I did it.”
“It has been a great ride,” reflected Charlie. Charlie’s family sent a personal note that was included in the program for his memorial service. “Charlie was not only the voice of the world, but a loving husband and father. He was the voice in our heads, in our hearts and in our lives. He was a handsome, tall, silver-haired Irish presence. When he walked into a room, you couldn’t help but fall in love with this genuine and generous kind man who would captivate you for hours with his knowledge of pretty much everything, his stories of his past [and boy, he had some stories to tell] or just listen to whatever you had to say. No matter who needed him, nothing was too much trouble for Charlie.”
Charlie died November 1, 2010. He was 78.
O'DONOGHUE, Deirdre: KPPC, 1970-71; KKGO, 1979; KCRW, 1980-86; KMET, 1983-87; KNX/fm, 1987-88; KLSX, 1988-99. Deirdre, longtime host of "Breakfast With The Beatles" on KLSX and "Snap" on KCRW, was found dead in her apartment on January 20, 2001. A friend claims that she died of Multiple Sclerosis.
Born in 1948, Deirdre started her radio career in 1974 at WBCN-Boston, a station that she maintained was "the best radio station in the world." She worked at "underground KPPC" as part of the "community switchboard" in the early 1970s. Beginning in 1983, Deirdre was heard on two FM stations - non-commercial KCRW and KMET. She was with KMET until 1987 when the station changed format and call letters. Her show "Snap" (acronym of "Saturday Night Avant Pop") on KCRW aired three nights a week with anything considered on the cutting edge of contemporary Pop music. She started at KKGO in 1979 and went on to work for KCRW, KMET, KNX/fm and KLSX. Deirdre was 52.
O'HAIR, Thom: KMET, 1975-76; KFI, 1984. Thom was a pioneering radio pd and dj who helped revolutionize rock radio at the groundbreaking San Francisco station KSAN in the early 1970s. He was the pd under gm Tom Donahue at KSAN (during the days in which Tom was known as the only vice president of a major American corporation to sport a full length pony tail). Thom was named major market program director of 1975. Thom was a lifelong believer in the power of radio as a communication tool. "He knew what radio could do, and he went places with it that no one else had," said his son, Tim Gubbins. Thom suffered a stroke on January 8, 2001. He was 58.
Born and raised in a suburb of Chicago, one of Thom's first jobs was in a mechanic's garage, where he took over the turntable, becoming the in-house disc jockey during his shift. After a short stint in the Air Force, Thom moved to California in the early 1960s. He helped create KCSE, the radio station at California State University at Chico. He met and married his wife, Kay, in 1965. After working at radio stations in Eugene and Springfield, Oregon, Thom went to KSAN in 1971
KSAN had already gained a national reputation as a place where disc jockeys played what they wanted, where irreverence mixed with politics, and where album-oriented rock radio began. His fellow djs described him as wonderful, funny, and irascible. In 1977, it was time to start something new, and he returned to San Francisco to launch KMEL. After his AOR experience, Thom worked in Portland in 1980 at KQFM. Off the air he worked at various audio, video and computer firms. He developed training programs for the Intercollegiate Broadcasting System. In 1985, he started a syndicated radio news service called "Rip 'n' Read." At KOFY in 1988, he called his new format AS (“Adult Smoking”). "If it smokes on the air, we'll play it. We're looking to portray the spirit of San Francisco."
Thom moved to Eugene, remaining active in radio, serving as general manager of Fat Music Radio Network, an online radio station based in Santa Cruz. He also produced Mountain Blue Grass Festivals for many years. Always interested in exploring new ways to use radio, Thom founded Hog Ranch Radio in the 1980s, which aired the twice-annual Strawberry Music Festival. The roots music and bluegrass event, held at Camp Mather near Yosemite National Park, attracts as many as 5,000 people every Memorial Day and Labor Day weekend. But he remained active in radio until near the time of his death, serving as general manager of Fat Music Radio Network, an online radio station based in Santa Cruz.
O'Hara, Russ: KGFJ, 1968; KRLA, 1969-72; KKDJ, 1972-74; KEZY, 1975-77; KROQ, 1979; KRLA, 1981-82; KRLA, 1992-93. Last heard, Russ was working at KDES-Palm Springs.
O'Hara, Steve: KFWB; KCBS. Unknown.
(Pat O'Brien and Raul Ortal)
O'KEEFE, Walter: KHJ, 1962. Walter did remotes from the Hollywood Brown Derby and later at the Villa Capri restaurant. The former movie actor spun records and interviewed Hollywood celebrities. Walter died June 26, 1983, of congestive heart failure. He was 82.
Born in Hartford at the turn of the century, Walter was a versatile entertainer. He did radio, was a tv host along with a career as an American songwriter, syndicated columnist, screenwriter and musical arranger. He graduated cume laude from Notre Dame. Walter started as a vaudeville performer before going on to Broadway. By 1937, he filled-in for such radio personalities as Walter Winchell, Edgar Bergen, Don McNeill and Garry Moore. He became the lof the NBC show Double or Nothing and was a regular on that network's Monitor series.
Walter was the host for the first Emmt Awards, held on January 25, 1949 at the Hollywood Athletic Club. O'Keefe was also a songwriter responsible for the musical scores of several Hollywood films. He introduced the very popular song, The Daring Young Man on the Flying Trapese in 1934, and it became permanently associated with him.
O'KELLY, Morris: KFI, 2012-20. Mo'Kelly is also a political commentator for BBC Radio. Prior to joining KFI, he was the producer for Tavis Smiley Radio Show from 2005-10, producer for Ryan Seacrest's American Top 40 from 2003-05 and he started out as a producer for The Jim Rome Show in the early 2000s.
A graduate of Georgetown University's McDonough School of Business, Mo is a long-time music industry professional, working with numerous record labels along the way including Capitol, Virgin, Warner Bros. and Interscope.
In addition, in 1996 he began branching out into entertainment journalism, scribing for newspapers, magazines, and other periodicals. After a number of critically acclaimed Op/Ed pieces in the Los Angeles Times, he decided to combine his love of writing and media production. Among his awards for his contributions on and off the page, O'Kelly was recognized by Ebony magazine as a 'Superbachelor' in 1999. In all 3 minutes of his free time, he practices and instructs the Korean martial art of Hapkido, where he is a 4th degree black belt.
O'Leary, Jim: KBIG, 1960; KFI, 1965-68. Jim also worked as John Patrick. He spent some time in San Diego. Jim worked the all-night shift at KFI. He died of a heart attack while only in his late 30s when he had a coughing spell on his sofa while watching a ballgame. Just a year before, his 4-year-old daughter Erin Lynn O'Leary died after developing a blood clot in her head following a fall.
O'Loughlin, Sean: KLON, 2000. Sean hosted a midday weekend show at the all-Jazz station.
O'Malley, Paul: KYSR, 1997-2003. Paul was made station manager at "Star 98.7" in early 2001. Paul served as senior vp/Strategic Sales Partnerships, for Westwood One. Beginning in 2017, Paul took over as general manager for Saga's Charleston (South Carolina) cluster of 6 stations.
O'Neal, Don: KIIS, 1990-94. Don left Fresno radio in late 1997. Unknown.
O'Neil, Garvey: KLAC, 1959. Unknown.
O'Neil, Mike: KHJ, 1969-71; KWIZ, 1972-73; KUTE/KGFJ, 1974-76; KIQQ, 1975-77; KUTE, 1977-78; KIIS, 1978-83; KLAC, 1983-86; KRTH/KHJ, 1986-87; KMPC, 1989-90. Mike is retired and living in Las Vegas.
O'Neill, Erin: KACE, 1979-80. Unknown.
O'Neill, Gary: KGFJ, 1983-84; XHRM. Last heard, Gary was working at Warner Bros. Records.
O'Neill, Greg: KSRF, 1988-90; KXEZ, 1990-96. Greg is a writer and is involved in tv and film productions.
O'NEIL, Scotty: KNX/fm, 1965-71; KGIL, 1971-74; KPRZ, 1983-85; KKLA, 1985-86; KMPC/KLIT, 1985-92; KJQI/KOJI, 1995; KGIL, 1998. Scotty collapsed onstage during a broadcast remote in Las Vegas on March 24, 2011 and died. He was 69. A report in the Las Vegas Sun-Times said, "They were in the dressing room, going over the monologue. Scotty seemed in really good shape, jolly like he always was. They came out, did the monologue and sat on the couch. They went to commercial. Scotty got this expression on his face, his eyes rolled up, and he just looked very peaceful. Everyone thought he'd fainted. His partner thought he might have been doing it as a joke, a comedy bit. A nurse from the audience rushed to the stage but she could not find a pulse."
Scotty was born in 1942 in Raleigh and graduated from the University of North Carolina with a broadcasting journalism degree. He arrived in the Southland in 1965 from WKRG-Mobile to work at KNX/fm and within two years was appointed pd. He replaced one of the legendary voices on KGIL, Paul Compton. He spent a number of years in the 70s at KGIL. At KKLA in 1985, he hosted an afternoon drive show, "Music on Faith." At 710/KMPC Scotty was the midday host. When KMPC's sister station KLIT joined the Lite AC format battle, Scotty was deejay and pd.
When the all-Sports format was attempted on KMPC, Scotty "was brought in and asked to save a sinking ship," according to Larry Stewart of the LA Times. "O'Neil did the best he could. He immediately lifted morale and brought in upbeat Charlie Tuna to host the important morning drive shift. Scott was part of “Music of Your Life" for a time. Throughout the 2000's, Scotty had been living and working in Las Vegas.
O'NEILL, Jimmy: KRLA, 1959-62; KFWB, 1963-67; KDAY, 1969-71; KRLA, 1984-85 and 1990-93. Jimmy was the host of one of the earliest network (ABC) tv rock shows, Shindig! when he was only 24 years old. The program regulars were Leon Russell, Darlene Love, and Billy Preston, and one of the dancers who "frugged and twisted" was actress Teri Garr.
Jimmy died January 11, 2013, at the age of 73. His daughter Katy wrote on Facebook: "On January 11th our beloved father Jimmy O'Neill peacefully transitioned into a better place. His vivacious laugh, talented voice, sense of humor and warm heart will be deeply missed by all who knew and loved him. His legacy will live on and he will never leave our hearts. Thank you to all our friends and family for all of your support during this difficult time. Blessings." He suffered for many years with a heart condition and diabetes.
"When I first arrived in LA to work at KRLA, Jimmy was the first to welcome me," emailed Sam Riddle when he heard the passing of O'Neill. "Jimmy always invited me to Sunday dinners at his mom's house. Jimmy was on the air 3-6 p.m. and I was 6-9 p.m. so I saw him just about every day. Jimmy was definitely 'one of a kind.'"
In the mid-1960s, Shindig! brought some of the greatest names in rock 'n' roll into America's living rooms. Born in Enid, Oklahoma in 1940, Jimmy worked three times at KRLA. He arrived in Southern California from Pittsburgh radio. Jimmy was one of the original "11-10 Men" when the Rock station debuted on September 3, 1959.
In 1960, at the age of 20, he became the youngest deejay ever to be rated #1.
In 1962, Jimmy opened the first Los Angeles teenage nightclub, Pandora's Box, a former coffee house on the Sunset Strip. He opened two other teenage nightclubs in Los Angeles: The Showboat on Melrose (partnered with Phil Everly and Sam Riddle) and the Chez Paree on La Cienega. Jimmy's first tv exposure was The Jimmy O'Neill Show on KCOP/Channel 13. It was a 1962 youth-oriented talk show. Rhino Records released Shindig! on home video in 1992.
People magazine chronicled Jimmy’s journey: “In 1966, unable to find steady work in showbiz, he began a downward journey that would take him through several careers, three marriages and years of drug and alcohol abuse.” When his first wife, Sharon (Poor Little Fool) Sheeley, left him the same month Shindig! was canceled, the stress was too much. People reported that one night shortly after the show’s demise, a drunken O’Neill tried to set Sheeley’s house on fire. When police and firefighters arrived, he says, they took pity on the obviously troubled former star and told him to go home and sleep it off. Since he couldn’t burn the house down, he took a sledgehammer to it. He was taken to a psychiatric hospital for observation but was quickly released without treatment. He then went to radio jobs in Albuquerque and Omaha, where he met and married the sister of actor Troy Donahue. Jimmy found a 12-step recovery group and gave up drinking. He spent the seventies selling stocks and cars and managing nightclubs. He ended the People piece: “I have walked through every nightmare you can imagine and HAVE come out okay.”
O'Neill, Sean: KLYY, 1999-2002. In late 1999, Sean was appointed gm at "Viva 107.1." He left the station in early summer of 2002.
O'Reilly, Bill: KABC, 2002-09. The former host of FOX's O'Reilly Factor started working the 9 a.m. - 11 a.m. shift at KABC on May 8, 2002. He abandoned his syndicated radio show in early 2009.
O'SHEA, Michael: KPOL, 1979; KMPC, 1979-80. Michael is market manager for Sonoma Media Partners.
Michael was a product of the golden years at KLIF-Dallas. He was a great midday jock. Michael’s a programming talent who moved into management and eventually ownership. Before KLIF, Michael worked as a jock in Ohio and Michigan. After his stop in Dallas, he joined WFTL-Miami and WLW-Cincinnati. In the late 1970s, Michael was hired by KVI-Seattle to oversee the Mariners baseball broadcasts. He did the job so well he became national program director for Gene Autry’s Golden West Broadcasters.
“KMPC was an old line MOR station in the Dick Whittinghill days and I moved it into a talk format to go after KABC, which was a very successful talk station.” Most people don’t know that Michael was part of the management team that brought Dr. Laura Schlessinger to KMPC. “KMPC program director Jim Davis and I found her doing a public access show at two in the morning. That’s how I discovered her,” remembered Michael. “I brought her in to interview with then-general manager Ken Miller. On the day of her interview, she brought a gingham tablecloth for the conference table and brought in croissants and sandwiches and we had a picnic that she catered. We hired her on the spot.”
“AM radio was really getting strangled by fm. KZLA was a hot fm station airing a cross between AC and alternative rock. It was an eclectic, fairly new format that everybody seemed to embrace. My job was to squeeze a few more drops of life for the Golden West stations – KSFO-San Francisco, KEX-Portland and KVI-Seattle. They could never get an fm station down here until it was too late.”
Michael returned to Seattle in the early 1980s and stayed for 20 years, essentially with one radio station (KUBE) through four ownerships, including his own at the end. The Marriott family bought KUBE and hired Michael to be the first general manager.
Oakes, Robert: KFWB, 1967. After a stint at WBZ-Boston, Robert has been seen as an ABC reporter.
OAKES, Royal: KPCC, 1983-88; KFWB, 1988-2006; KABC, 1994-2018. During the “trial of the century,” Royal was one of the resident legal voices heard on KFWB and KABC, in Los Angeles, and on the ABC Radio Network nationally, describing the O.J. Simpson proceedings.
Royal's interest in radio started in the early 1970s while attending UCLA and working as a newsman and dj on campus station KLA. He went on to get a law degree and became a partner in the firm of Barger & Wolen, where he specializes in business litigation, employment law and media law.
In 1983, Royal started broadcasting a one-minute spot, "Focus on the Law," on KPCC. The feature wound up being syndicated on 55 NPR stations.
KFWB hired Royal in 1988 to be the on-air legal adviser. In addition to his "Focus" feature, he has been there for analysis during highly visible trials. His legal expertise and on-air skills have evolved to talk show work on many California stations.
OBER, Ken: KLSX, 1995-96. Ken was part of the experimental “Real Radio” at KLSX during the mid-1990s. He hosted MTV’s Remote Control before teaming up with former Brady Bunch star Susan Olsen as part of the launch of “Real Radio,” a non-traditional Talk format. He and Susan left KLSX in early summer 1996. Ken hosted a revised tv version of Make Me Laugh and he worked briefly at Comedy World. He died November 15, 2009. He was 52.
A graduate of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, he worked in Boston radio before moving to New York to pursue comedy and acting. He appeared in the tv sitcoms Parenthood and Fresh Prince of Bel Air.
Ober had worked as writer and producer on Comedy Central’s Mind of Mencia in recent years and also did a stint as a consulting producer on The New Adventures of Old Christine in 2006.
Obuchon, Homer: KGFJ, 1940s - 1970s. Homer was an engineer at KGFJ and in 1975, helped build the antenna. He died May 1, 1977, at the age of 67, of multiple myeloma. He helped build a number of new studios in several locations.
OCEAN, Bobby: KHJ, 1975-80; KWST, 1980-82. Bobby is a premier imaging voice based in Northern California. He's working at XM Satellite Radio. There was a time when radio was concerned about the total sound of a station or a program, which included the sound of the jock, jingles, commercials, imaging, contests, promotions and production elements. You could tune into a Bobby Ocean station and know right away that he was involved and what station you were listening to.
There was a time when arguably the best production man in Contemporary radio was Bobby Ocean. His voice, style and presentation created an ambiance and image so that you knew you were listening to a winner. I wondered what he was up to and he had such a fun response that I wanted to share it with you.
But first, for those of you who were not around for the Bobby Ocean days.
The seventh generation Californian started in radio as Ray Farrell on KMBY-Monterey. In 1968, Bobby was Johnny Scott on KYNO-Fresno before becoming Bobby Ocean at KGB-San Diego in March 1968. He joined KCBQ-San Diego in 1971. Bobby debuted on KFRC-San Francisco in September 1972 and on May 2, 1975, joined KHJ. He left "Boss Radio" in March 1980 to successfully pursue voiceover work in Los Angeles and also joined "K-West" that same year. He left KWST in the spring of 1982 to return to his native San Francisco. He joined K101 but was soon heard again on KFRC beginning February 10, 1983 and continued as the image voice for close to 20 years.
“I have both reached retirement age and established three companies [1.Imaging for Radio/TV; 2.Commercials; 3.Online Marketing and Promotion].
Bobby has a different definition of retirement. For him he reached a stage in his life when he’s not hustling for work or auditioning anymore. Once he gave up the quest for money, now people search him out for projects. His attitude steered him from the Bay Area to an imaging job in UFO country, Roswell, New Mexico.
He claims to have been living in the best of both worlds for the past five years. “I had gone pretty mystic, living like a monk, that is, if monks live on instant oatmeal,” said Bobby. “Suddenly I have a roommate and personal assistant, and I am eating well. It's the addition of my niece: my older brother's oldest daughter, Debbie, who has come to live with me. She takes great care of me, cooks very well and has a remarkable upbeat attitude. She works with me in my business and has sniffed out the perfect part- time job close by so she can buy a few groceries. She's been with me for close to two years now. She has her own boyfriend.”
As for a relationship in his own life he claims to occasionally date a “real cutie,” but he’s still single and “I probably ought to remain that way.”
When you ask Bobby Ocean about his broadcasting career, he claims to have had enough. “I have had every dj's dream come true. All I wanted was an all-California career and I got way more than I figured, and worked with absolutely the best. That's enough. Today's corporate radio is for others. I'm sated with being a dj. I was one when it was fun.”
“Now I work as I choose and with whom I choose,” Bobby reflected. “I learned, during the monk years, to live pretty lean and translate all my broadcast skills to online marketing and promotion. I also learned to say no, and to play again. My garage is converted into an old school Art Room, able to move from inkwork and calligraphy to cartoons [Bobby did all the cartoon work at Radio & Records for years], then to wire, beads and leather work to personalized apparel. I have a big family and can gift them with all of our experiments. Most of the family proudly wears a one-of-a-kind Keith Richards T-shirt (my sketch, embedded), as an example, which is available nowhere else.”
Bobby concluded: “There's too much in this world to cherish rather than miss out completely for a jammed schedule. Now that my schedule has been freed up a bit-- pleasingly, I have more time for my own tasks. More time for the many other things all happening at once in this exploding miracle of life, and even more time to BS about radio. What a splendid adventure THAT once was!”
OCHLAN, PJ: KMZT, 2011-12. A veteran of the original K-Mozart, P.J. is also an actor with a career spanning more than 25 years. He has appeared on Broadway, been in several critically acclaimed films, performed in Joseph Papp’s New York Shakespeare Festival, and been a four-time tv series regular. He left Saul Levine's operation in the summer of 2012.
PJ has a very active voice career with audio books.
OCHOA, Anthony: KWST, 1981-82; KTSJ, 1983; KYMS, 1985-86; KWVE, 1986-92; KUSC, 1993-2000; KKLA 1993-2001. From 2001-19, Anthony was with Salem Media Group Corporate Engineering.
"It was absolutely a great and very long run ... personally and closely working with SalemLA general manager Dave Armstrong, KKLA talk show host Warren Duffy & network national hosts Hugh Hewitt, Dennis Prager, Michael Medved, Mike Gallagher and Larry Elder ... for a cumlative total of going on 27 years."
ODM, KIIS, 2004-07; KGGI, 2007-20. Robert Gutierrez, aka ODM ("One Dope Mexican"), worked late evenings at KIIS from KGGI-Riverside until late 2007. He continues at KGGI in morning drive with Evelyn Erives.
(Daniel Oshe, Jim O'Brien, Keith Olbermann, Warren Olney, and ODM)
Ofgang, Jeff: KFWB, 1998-99. Jeff is an executive producer at KBAK/tv-Bakersfield.
Olbermann, Keith: KNX, 1985-92; KSPN, 2005-07. Keith hosted Countdown on MSNBC until November 2010 when he was suspended for contract violations. He came back and officially left MSNBC in January 2011. He abruptly left Current TV in March 30, 2012. He left ESPN2 in the summer of 2015.
Olden, Jackie: KNX, 1978-86; KABC, 1986-87; KGIL, 1988-92; KABC, 1992; KNX, 1994. Chef Jackie is living in Orange County.
OLDEN, Paul: KLAC, 1974-88; KMPC, 1990-91; KNX, 2005-09. Born in 1954, Paul announced play-by-play for the UCLA Bruins basketball and football games. In 1990 he replaced Joe Torre as KTLA/Channel 5's Angel play-by-play announcer and also hosted a baseball show called "Sportsline."
In 1991 he started covering the L.A. Rams and moved from UCLA to the Rams, replacing Eddie Doucette.
As a young production assistant at KLAC in 1978, Paul asked Tom Lasorda that infamous question about Dave Kingman’s performance and the four-letter laden response was used as a regular part of the 30-minute Jim Healey daily sports report. He announced for the New York Yankees and Jets in recent years, and has been the public-address announcer at recent Super Bowls. In the spring of 1998 he started as the radio play-by-play announcer for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays.
Paul is currently the public address announcer for the New York Yankees.
OLEESKY, Mark: KABC, 1996-2006. Mark co-hosted a computer show at KABC for almost a decade with Marc Cohen called, The Marc & Mark Show. Marc was the radio geek and Mark a computer geek. They came from two very different places but the show worked. Marc turned to Mark to be his expert on the radio show. Marc was a graduate of CSUN and a member of Mensa.
Oleesky remembered their first remote that took place at the PC Club in Burbank. “It was a rainy day and I remember driving up to the store and seeing this huge line of people and wondering what they were there for,” said Mark. “I couldn’t even imagine the whole parking lot of Toys R Us was filled to capacity. I couldn’t park in the lot. Turned out they were there for our show.”
He was head of an IT division for a real estate/property management company in West Los Angeles and the San Fernando Valley. He died of a heart attack on January 11, 2011, at the age of 60.
Oliva, George: KFI, 1989-91. George is now writing.
Olivas, Kevin: KFWB, 1996-99. Kevin is Parity Project Director for the National Association of Hispanic Journalists in Washington, DC.
OLIVER, King: KJLH, 1968-85; KACE. King Oliver (Oliver Nelson Harris Jr.) had a long run at KJLH. He’s now 83, retired and living in East Rancho Dominguez.
Oliver grew up in Newark, Delaware, in fact before he settled on the King moniker at KJLH he called himself “the square from Delaware.” “Someone told me, ‘you’re no square, you are a king.’ And that’s how my name came about,” said Oliver. Radio didn’t always pay the bills for his growing family, so he became an electrician at Texaco Oil Company where he retired in 1999.
His radio career was confined to evenings and some after midnight shifts. Rhapsody in Black host Bill Gardner called Oliver the ‘baby maker’ because of the soft and soulful r&b music he played while on the air at KJLH. “Some called me the ‘Voice of Love,’ because I drifted towards that kind of music, like the O’Jays and Spinners, those groups with the deep voices singing that great, sweet stuff,” said Oliver.
His father was a sailor so the family moved around. Oliver had three brothers and three sisters. When Oliver was sixteen, the family moved to the island of Guam, where he finished high school and then off to Park College located in Parkville, Missouri. After graduation he joined the Army and spent eight months at Fort Ord before going to Bamberg, Germany for the remainder of his time with the service.
He was discharged from the Army in July 1962. In those days, the government sent you back to wherever you called home. “I went to my parents’ home.” That’s how he got to Long Beach. “My father was still serving in the US Navy and stationed at a navy base in Long Beach. During my college years, my family lived in San Diego. I usually spent my summers with the family in San Diego. We had an antenna on top of our home so I could listen to Hunter Hancock broadcasting from Los Angeles. At that time was no r&b station in San Diego,” Oliver remembered.
Olney, Warren: KCRW, 1992-2019. Warren hosts national syndicated To the Point. He ended the 23-year run of Which Way, LA in January 2016.
OLSEN, Susan: KLSX, 1995-96. The former Brady Bunch tv star was best known for her role as Cindy Brady.
She teamed with Ken Ober during the launch of "Real Radio" in the summer of 1995. She left KLSX in early summer 1996. For a brief time she worked at ComedyWorld.com.
Susan attended the American Academy of Dramatic Arts and worked as a graphic artist. She co-executive produced CBS' Brady Bunch Home Movies. Susan is spokesperson for Migraine Awareness Month and a mother. She hosts a weekly show with Sheena Metal on LA Talk Radio.
Olson, Stu: KVFM, 1969-74; KWST, 1971-72; KWNK, 1987. Stu is an actor.
Onink, Dirk: KFOX, 1983-85. Dirk hosted a Heavy Metal show called LA Rock Scene at KFOX. He interviewed all the famous metal bands from those days, including Scorpions, KDIO, Poison, and Metallica.
(Kevin Olivas, Homer Obuchon, Ronn Owens, and Ron Oster)
Orchard, Ken: KHJ, 1959-80. Ken serves as FCC Compliance specialist for Public Inspection Files, EAS, Stations Logs and other FCC rules and regulations for over 125 stations in seven states.
Ordunio, Doug: KFAC, 1973-86; KKGO, 1991. Doug was senior music programmer for AEI Inflight audio service.
Orman, Suze: KFI, 2001; KLAC, 2002. Suze's syndicated show aired at KLAC until a format change in late 2002. She hosts a podcast through Podcast One.
ORNEST, Laura: KFWB; KNX, 1997-2009; KUSC, 2009-13. Laura is an award-winning television and radio reporter and producer who joined Didi Hirsch’s Board in 1999 as a way to “give back” to her community and to help erase the stigma of mental illness.
A native of Canada, Ornest worked as Assistant General Manager for the Vancouver Canadians, a AAA Baseball team owned by her father, Harry Ornest, who subsequently owned the St. Louis Blues of the National Hockey League and the Toronto Argonauts of the Canadian Football League. When her father sold the Vancouver Canadians in 1981, Ornest launched her broadcasting career as a sportscaster for CKNW radio in Vancouver.
A year later, CBC Television hired her to host the 11 PM nightly news sportscast and a weekend sports show, making her the first female tv sportscaster in Western Canada. Ornest began working as a freelance tv news reporter for Channel 9 and ESPN in Los Angeles in 1985. She also produced shows for E! Television, CNN and CBS before she crossed into broadcast news radio.
She worked as a local news reporter for KFWB and then KNX 1070, where she earned several Golden Mikes and Associated Press awards for her work.
Ornest currently interviews, writes and produces features on the arts for KUSC Classical Radio 91.5. She also serves on the Board of Jewish Family Services and the Jewish Federation. She spent a year at La Sorbonne in Paris before earning a BA in French, with a minor in Spanish, from UCLA. She lives in Santa Monica with her husband, Rick Leslie, an architect, and their teenage son. (bio from Didi Hirsch website)
Orozco, Lance: KCLU, 2003-18. Lance is the award-winning news director at KCLU.
Orr, Vern: KZLA/KLAC, 1982-85. Unknown.
Ortal, Raul: KCAL, 1966-71; KALI, 1971-95; KWKW, 1995-98; XRPS, 1998-2004. Raul owns a consulting company, Video Sol Communications, dealing primarily with Spanish-speaking stations in the States and Veracruz, Mexico. He now with MundoFox 34-Las Vegas.
Ortega, Sam: KRLA, 1996-98. Sam is
a commercial truck driver for an aerospace manufacturing company in Ontario, California.
ORTIZ, Arianna: "I'm a late bloomer. Some people know me from my time as a broadcaster in Los Angeles. In what feels like another life, I spent many years doing news and traffic reports for Southern California and other cities, when I wasn't doing theater or shooting commercials. I couldn't really get an agent or tv and film auditions. I was never quite Latin enough for the kinds of roles that seemed available and I was theatre trained with noone to guide me in the ways of Los Angeles. Ha!
I probably should have gone somewhere else, but I got the broadcasting job right after theater school when I basically "acted" my way into the role of "reporter" with no proper training and only a few months experience at a small local radio station during college. (A gal's gotta eat!) Needless to say, I really commited to the role and that became a full fledged second career for awhile.
But with the industry changing I left that behind a few years ago. I'm blessed to be a full time working actress ever since.
My first day of theater school at CALARTS, I begged my mentor for a transfer to the film school. I'd been obsessed with movies and directed a short film in high school and quite frankly, theater school was WEIRD for a simple gal from Texas. I was there on a scholarship (and also, that's not how it works) so I was told to stay put. I'm so glad I did and I truly love being an actor. But I've also never shaken my passion for films. Hence, my directing and producing projects and what I do in my free time.
I think bios are a little awkward, but they do provide context. The basics about me are that I don't believe in short cuts and I'm a glutton for hard work. And I like long walks and great comedy. And cheese apparently. My husband says I eat a lot of cheese. (from Arianna's website)
ORTIZ, Joe: KABC, 1971; KLOS, 1972-73; KPFK, 1975-76; KPPC, 1986; KPZE, 1988-89, KABC, 1992. Joe lives in Redlands, managing three blogs and two websites and is still President of the Official Tom Flores Fan Club, pushing for the first Latino to win two Super Bowl rings to get elected to the National Football League's Hall of Fame.
Joe is a public relations consultant in the Inland Empire and also writes for local and national periodicals.
ORTIZ, Yesi: KPWR, 2006-18; KAMP, 2018-20. Yesi worked middays at Power 106 for years. In the spring of 2018, she moved to middays at AMP Radio. In late summer of 2018, she was appointed music director at AMP. In the fall of 2019, Yesi moved to afternoon drive. In the summer of 2020 she took on apd duties.
Born and raised in Orange County, she commuted every weekend during college to Las Vegas to get her start in radio.
She is part of the Style Network’s “Latina Modern Mom” initiative, which targets Hispanic moms between 18 and 49 years old with new programming and makeovers of existing shows. Yesi hosted a new reality show called, Single With 7. The Style Network is part of NBC/Universal, which has been focusing on the Hispanic female market.
Osborn, Dale: KMPC, 1966-69. Dale lives in Portland and does occasional free-lance voice work.
Osborn, Jamie: KQLZ, 1989-91; KRLA, 1999-2000; KLSX, 2001-03. Jamie was the commercial production director at KLSX.
(Ken Orchard, and Paul O'Malley)
Osborn, Lisa: KMNY, 1990-92; KKLA, 1995; KFI/KOST, 1996-2003/ KSUR, 2003; KFI, 2005-07; KFWB, 2009-14; KCRW, 2014-15. Lisa broadcast traffic/news and was a fill-in anchor at KFWB until a format flip in September 2014. In the spring of 2015 she was morning host at KCRW-Santa Barbara until the summer of 2015. She is now the News & Public Affairs Director at University of California Santa Barbara.
OSBORNE, Super Dave: KLSX, 2001; KLAC. Bob Einstein, better known as "Super Dave" Osborne for his bizarre stunts that always go awry, he was part of the broadcast team of the Xtreme Football League. He died January 2, 2019, at the age of 76. Shortly before his death he had been diagnosed with cancer.
We went to Chapman College (now University) together. He was on the basketball team and always very funny, in a dry, droll way. My roommate was also on the basketball team, so we all hung around a lot.
Bob went on to create the “Super Dave” character, appearing frequently on Late Night with David Letterman. He also was a two-time Emmy winner who was seen fairly regularly on HBO’s Curb Your Enthusiasm. Bob was the brother of comedian and writer Albert Brooks. Bob was part of the writing team for The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour (which he was also appeared as “Officer Judy”), Sonny and Cher and Dick Van Dyke.
"Super Dave" was a fairly regular fill-in on the Sports Nuts show at KLAC, subbing for Gabe Kaplan.
Osborne, Sean: KRLA, 2002. Sean was co-host of "Ian Faith's Music Scene Revue" at KRLA. He's also produced the Dennis Prager Show. He's music supervisor at CanApple Productions.
Oscar, Carlos: KLSX, 1995-97. Carlos is a comedy actor and writer.
Oshe, Daniel: KHTZ, 1979-82; KABC, 1982-2003. Daniel was part of the engineering team at KABC.
Oshin, Steve: KBIG, 1983-97. Steve is gm of KBSG/KNDD-Seattle. In the summer of 1999, he was promoted to head the Entercom cluster of five stations. He left Entercom in February 2008.
Oster, Ron: KWIZ. The former California Man of the Year owns Rawhide Travel Agency (7 offices around the world) based in Phoenix. His Arizona agency is #1 out of 631 in the state. He's currently writing a book, The (mis)Adventures of a Travel(ing) Agent.
Othenin-Girard, Linda: KPCC, 1992-2012. Linda worked mornings at KPCC and as a senior producer for Air Talk.
Otis, Don: KHJ, 1965. From the world of ad agencies, Don was operations director at KHJ just prior to Boss Radio. He passed away in the 1980s.
OTIS, Johnny: KFOX, 1958; XERB/XPRS, 1967; KPPC, 1970-71; KPFK, 1975-89. Born John Veliotes on December 28, 1921, of Greek parentage in an integrated section of Vallejo, Johnny decided early on to live in the black community. Johnny
died January 17, 2012, at the age of 90.
In a 1979 LA Times interview, he confirmed, "Despite all the hardships, there's a wonderful richness in black culture that I prefer." In a 1995 OC Register profile: "The kids in my neighborhood that I played with, they were of the African American culture. We were raised together and I didn't care to leave and go anywhere else."
How did he get to
? Johnny told Billy Vera: "I was working with the Love Otis Band at the Barrelhouse in L.A. . Jimmy Witherspoon and Nat Cole came to Omaha and they wanted me to play drums. At first I thought it was too good to be true, but that's how I got to Omaha " L.A.
In the early 1940s, he was making $75 a week as a drummer at the big band Club Alabam. By the late 1940s, r&b was beginning to take hold. Johnny was one of the forerunners of the r&b music of the 1950s, leading his band to a #1 single, Willie and the Handjive. Johnny hosted a local tv show with all the r&b stars.
Johnny was a regular at the El Monte American Legion Stadium. As a writer he scored hits with Dance With Me Henry, So Fine and All Night Long. He produced early hits for Little Richard, Johnny Ace and Etta James, and he discovered Jackie Wilson, Little Willie John, Esther Phillips and Hank Ballard & the Midnighters. With the advent of the Beatles, r&b suddenly died. Johnny then became involved in the civil rights movement, wrote a sociopolitical column for the LA Sentinel. He twice lost the Democratic nomination for a California State Assembly seat and was chief of staff for former Lt. Governor and Representative Mervyn Dymally.
In the early 1990s, he bought a farm near
Sebastopoland converted his barn into a recording studio. In 1995 he was selling Johnny Otis Apple Juice in health food stores. His artwork is featured in Colors and Chords: The Art of Johnny Otis. Johnny and his wife Phyllis were married for over a half century. San Francisco
In 1994, Johnny was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, along with Bob Marley, Duane Eddy, Elton John, John Lennon, The Grateful Dead, The Animals, Rod Stewart, and The Band.
(Lisa Osborn, Ken Ober, and Bob O'Brien)
Owen, Ray: KPOL, 1961-69. Ray is retired and living in Aqua Dulce.
OWENS, Buck: KBBQ, 1967. The legendary country singer once worked as a dj. By 1970 Buck owned four radio stations, four ranches, a travel agency, a recording studio, a million-dollar publishing company and a syndicated tv show that was shot in
. Oklahoma City
Buck was born on August 12, 1929, in
. The son of a sharecropper, he left school in the ninth grade to work in an Sherman, Texas nightclub. His first big hit was Under Your Spell Again in 1959. A big break came in 1963 when his song Act Naturally was recorded by the Beatles. The single that launched his singing career was Tiger by the Tail. Arizona
Buck died March 25, 2006.
OWENS, Gary: KFWB, 1961-62; KMPC, 1962-81; KPRZ, 1982-84; KKGO, 1985-86; KFI, 1986-89; KLAC, 1992; KJQY/KOJY, 1993-95; KGIL, 1997-99; KLAC, 2005; XTRA, 2005; KSUR/KKGO, 2006-07. A veteran of KFWB in the Top 40 heyday and two decades with the Station of the Stars 710/KMPC, Gary died on February 12, 2015, at the age of 80. A diabetic since the age of 8, Gary died in his home surrounded by family.
Gary was voted the #1 disc jockey for the second half of the 20th century, by readers of Los Angeles Radio People. He was nationally known for holding his cupped hand over his ear while announcing the comedy breakthrough show Laugh-In. Gary is one of the most famous broadcasters in Los Angeles radio history.
Gary was born Gary Altman in Plankenton, South Dakota. He started on the air at KORN radio, worked at KMA-Shenandoah, Iowa, and KOIL-Omaha. It was at KOIL that Gary changed his name to Owens. After stops at KIMN-Denver, KILT-Houston, KTSA-San Antonio, WNOE-New Orleans, WIL-St. Louis, and KEWB-San Francisco, he moved to KFWB in 1961, where "G.O." became the morning man, with number one ratings.
A year later, he moved to KMPC, staying for two decades. Gary has made over 1,000 national on-camera tv appearances, been on over 10,000 radio shows, nearly 3,000 cartoon episodes, 35 videos, 20 albums and CDs (six Grammy nominations), 12 books on tape, thousands of commercials (he has won over 50 Clio awards) and appeared in 12 motion pictures.
Gary worked every episode of the Emmy award-winning Laugh In, making famous the phrase "Beautiful Downtown Burbank" which he had been using for years on his radio show. R&R and Billboard called him "a legend." Advertising Age and Adweek said he’s "the most decorated man in broadcasting." He was the emcee for the 1969 Grammy ceremony and the nighttime host of The Gong Show.
Gary's comedy writing included Bullwinkle and Fractured Flickers. He was the voice of Roger Ramjet. The Times named Gary 1968 Disc Jockey of the Year. At KFI he teamed with longtime friend Al Lohman. Gary was inducted into The National Broadcasters Hall of Fame, The National Radio Hall of Fame, The NAB Hall of Fame, and The South Dakota Hall of Fame - all in the same year. In 1979 he was the first radio personality to be inducted into the Hollywood Hall of Fame. In 1980, he was honored with a Star on the Hollywood Boulevard Walk of Fame. He received the NAB Radio Award for lifetime achievement. In late 1995, Gary was listed in Vanity Fair's TV Hall of Fame as one of the legendary voices in the history of television. Gary was one of the original voices for the "Music Of Your Life" format and in early 1997, he became the announcer on the Rosie O’Donnell Show.
“Humor has helped protect me from the bruises of life, in addition to a daily supply of fantasy, illusion and talcum powder."
Owens, Ronn: KABC, 1997-98. Ronn works middays at KGO-San Francisco. He was on KABC from July 14, 1997 to July 31, 1998. Ronn announced in the summer of 2014 that he had been diagnosed with Parkinson's disease. In 2015, he was inducted into the National Radio Hall of Fame. In early 2018, KGO dropped Owens' talk program in favor of 10-minute commentaries.
Oxarart, Frank: KFWB, 1968-69 and 1977-84. Frank retired from his post as vp/gm at KCBS-San Francisco in late summer 2003 and moved to Sarasota, Florida.
Ozomatli: KYSR, 2008. The six members of the L.A. based band, Ozomatli took over mornings in late summer of 2008 and left two months later.
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