Rick Dees began his career sometime in the early 1970s in the state of Mississippi. His first claim to fame occurred in Memphis, at 56 WHBQ, that powerful Top 40 station which was home to many legendary deejays, including George Klein, Wink Martindale and others.
Following his phenomenal success at WHBQ with his sidekick, Terrance McKeever, Dees left for California. Being that WHBQ was an RKO station, Dees was essentially called up to the big leagues from the brass at RKO, and sent to 93 KHJ. When KHJ began to implode due to a number of factors, Dees found himself unemployed… for two, excruciating years before finally landing the morning show at KIIS-FM. There, Dees found himself presiding over the number one radio morning show in Los Angeles, a place where he would stay until he was replaced, unceremoneously, by Ryan Seacrest, on February 10, 2004.
KIIS-FM, at this point in 1985, was still simulcasting it’s sister station, KIIS-AM 1150. The AM side was broadcasting in Motorola C-Quam AM Stereo (and did so for the rest of the 1980s and into the 1990s). JAM Creative Productions was the sole supplier of station jingles, a separate set were sung for the AM and the FM side, along with some common cuts. Dees had a full staff for the morning show, plenty of sound effects, great writers and some hilairious bits. It could be said that Dees, and KIIS-FM were both just hitting their stride in the Summer of 1985.
As usual, I’d like to cordially invite our West Coast expert, known as ‘CalRadioPD’ to comment on any errors or omissions printed here in this presentation. There is almost always a ‘story behind the story’ and we’d sure like to know about Dees and KIIS-AM and FM in the mid-1980s. In fact, anyone who would like to comment is invited to do so. Spark up a conversation in our comment section, and know that we’ll be sporting a brand new discussion board just on the topic of Classic Airchecks very soon. But for now, just click that ‘Comment’ Button!