Alan Freed

Alan Freed

After being fired from WABC radio and WNEW TV in 1959 for refusing to sign a statement that he didn't accept gratuities for the playing of records, Freed worked for KDAY radio in Los Angeles (1960). At first all went well. Ratings were good but he left when the station would not allow him to promote live rock shows.

Broke down barriers by playing music of black artists for primarily white audiences long before most anyone else in the business.

Elected to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as a charter member in 1986 under the category Non-Performer.

He returned to New York in 1961 to host a "Twist" review at the Audobon Ballroom. The event wasn't well publicized at the time, as he had lost his NYC radio (WABC) and TV (WNEW) programs in 1959 due to the payola scandal. Attendance was poor.

He was awarded a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for Radio at 6381 Hollywood Boulevard in Hollywood, California.

Inducted into the Radio Hall of Fame in 1988.

Legendary radio DJ in the 1950s who helped popularize the term "Rock and Roll" music.

Upon his death, he was cremated. His ashes are interred at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in Cleveland, Ohio.

Was arrested and pleaded guilty to accepting "Payola" (bribes for playing certain songs). He was blacklisted from broadcasting and died broke and bitter in 1965 at age of 42.

Worked as a DJ at WJW in Cleveland from 1951-54 and hosted the late-night "Moondog Rock N Roll Party". In 1952 he promoted the "Moondog Coronation Ball" widely regarded as the first ever rock concert.