(CBS11) – Dan Ingram (pronounced IN-GRAM, not ING-RAM) was a radio disc jockey’s disc jockey. For half a century, he graced the airwaves with his smooth sounding voice and a personality second to none.
A native New Yorker and the son of musicians, he started at WHCH/Hempstead NY at Hofstra College. By 1959, he worked at 1480 KBOX in Dallas which had been an “also ran” in the ratings to Gordon McLendon’s 50,000 watt blowtorch, the Mighty 1190 KLIF. One year later, he was on WIL/St. Louis. He was the man that raised ratings both at KBOX and WIL. By 1961, at age 27, he returned home to New York and on the air at MusicRadio 77 WABC, a big 50,000 watt station day and night. Anywhere up and down the east coast of the U.S., you could have heard Dan. Along with Ron Lundy, “Cousin Brucie” Morrow and morning man Harry Harrison (“The Morning Mayor”), WABC Radio ruled the rock and roll airwaves of New York for over two decades. By 1982, WABC dropped its music format for a talk format, which it continues to program today.
He did a number of weekly syndicated shows for radio and was the announcer for a late-night TV show, “Nightlife” with David Brenner. But by 1991, he was back in the DJ saddle at 101.1 WCBS-FM for a 12 year run, left the station, then returned in 2007. He also was a guest DJ at K-EARTH 101 (KRTH-FM Los Angeles), apparently as a audition for their morning drive show that was open due to the retirement of Robert W. Morgan but the job went to Charlie Van Dyke (Van Dyke is a native of Dallas, worked for McLendon at KLIF, and now resides in Arizona). He was also heard on WKTU/New York and WAXQ/New York. He also played jazz on WABC-FM (now WPLJ-FM).
His most notable characteristics were his quick wit, good pacing, and the ability to “talk up” the lyrics of a song and finish exactly when the lyrics started. He had numerous “Danism’s” such as “Hey, Kemosabe!”, “The boys in blue are looking for you, with radar”, “We’re off like a thundering herd of turtles!”, and “The Dan Ingram Show might start off slow, but you can be guaranteed it’ll slump off from there!’
Dan retired in 2003 and was inducted into the National Radio Hall Of Fame in 2007. He also received an Edward R. Murrow Award for an anti-smoking campaign.
He passed away on Sunday, June 24, 2018 at age 83.
Dan Ingram set the standards for radio personalities, both in his day and today. There will never be another Dan Ingram.
Enjoy this clip of Dan on CBS-FM!