In Memory of KLOS and KMET Rock Radio Disc Jockey Damion Bragdon – Orange County Register

LARadio.Com’s Don Barrett broke the news: Damion Bragdon – although he rarely used his last name on the air – died on March 26 at the age of 79 of complications from cancer. Listeners in Southern California would have heard him on KLOS (95.5 FM), KMET (now KTWV, 94.7 FM) and KLSX (now KNX-FM, 97.1).

Before Damion came to Los Angeles to become part of the KLOS Air Staff in 1971, Damion was with WDAI/Chicago as the station evolved from its “free” progressive rock format to the more traditional, album-oriented “rock ‘n stereo.” . …essentially repeating exactly what he did in Chicago here in Los Angeles.

These changes were no accident, the two stations were both owned by ABC, and in 1971 ABC decided that all of its owned and operated FM stations nationwide adopt the same format, adopting new call letters to distinguish the FMs from the shared AMs. In the case of KLOS, Damion joined Jeff Gonzer, JJ Jackson, Jim Ladd and programmer Tom Yates to launch the new format here. In the late 1970s he rose to become station programmer himself, a position he gave up when he joined then-competitor KMET.

In 1986 he found himself with the all new classic rocker KLSX where he stayed until 1994. He then moved to satellite based formats with Unistar and Westwood One/Dial Global, in between making a stint in Hawaii including programming AM/FM combo. He retired permanently in 2008, but continued to produce an hour-long program called Rock and Roll Cowboy – modern country music mixed with classic rock – which was aired on a number of stations across the country.

In an interview with Barrett in 1994, Damion spoke of some of the highlights of his career, including partnering with Ladd to produce early InnerView programs, interviewing Led Zeppelin, and attending the 1973 California Jam.

His wife Joy Hall shared an email with Barrett describing how Damion’s last few days had been difficult. Friends and co-workers praised Damion, describing him as kind, sweet, kind, and considerate.

“He really was one of the good guys — a sweet man with practically no ego,” Michael Benner wrote in an email to Barrett, to cite just one example.

All of this could be heard over the airwaves as he did his shows, no matter what station he was on. His delivery has always been seamless: the perfect album rock DJ and someone who loved the music he played.

You can hear airchecks yourself; Search “Damion KLOS and KMET” on YouTube.

February reviews

The February Nielsens showed a narrowing of the gap between 1st place KOST (103.5 FM) and 2nd place KRTH (101.1 FM), with just 0.1 separating the two: 5.5 to 5.4 . The remaining top 10 included KTWV (4.6), KBIG (4.5), KFI (4.1), KLVE (4.1), KIIS-FM (3.9), KRRL (3.9), KBUE (3.2) and KCBS-FM (3.1).

That Real 92.3 was linked to KIIS-FM would have been a wake-up call for KIIS-FM in the past, but now that both stations are owned by the same company, the ailing iHeart Media, that will no longer be the case. Just behind the top 10, level with KRCD in 11th, was KNX, still no better than as a standalone AM station. Now with frequencies 1070 AM and 97.1 FM it received a 2.9.

Cut out the BS

Bo Snerdley was the longtime producer of conservative orator Rush Limbaugh; He helped line up guests, monitored calls, and most importantly, helped compile the day’s news for Limbaugh to explain. In Memory of KLOS and KMET Rock Radio Disc Jockey Damion Bragdon – Orange County Register

Adam Bradshaw

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