The LA Times remembers Dave Diamond.
Rock ‘n’ roll DJ of ‘Boss Radio’
Dave Diamond, 77, one of KHJ-AM’s first rock ‘n’ roll disc jockeys when the Los Angeles station’s “Boss Radio” format was introduced in 1965, died May 5 at his home in Spearfish, S.D., according to the Fidler-Isburg Funeral Chapel in Spearfish. No cause was given.
Along with the Real Don Steele, Robert W. Morgan and other radio personalities, Diamond joined a rotation conceived by legendary program director Bill Drake to offer less chatter, fewer commercials and more music. Five months after the format change, KHJ (930) was the No. 1 station in Los Angeles.
Diamond was on the air at KHJ for only a few months but hosted his “Diamond Mine” show on other local stations, starting with KBLA and then KFWB, KRLA, KIIS and KFI. He also had a stint at San Francisco’s KFRC.
An early champion of the Doors, Diamond pushed boundaries in 1967 by playing the seven-minute album version of “Light My Fire” instead of the shorter single trimmed to fit AM radio’s standard 21/2-minute time slot.
Born Sid I. Davison Jr. on Aug. 7, 1936, in Howard, S.D., Diamond returned to his home state after retiring from radio to teach communications at Black Hills State University.
— Times staff and wire reports