|Wolfman Jack |Man
Wolfman Jack in
|Born |now |Robert Weston Smith |
New York City, U.S.
|Died ||July 1, |two 1995 (aged 57)
Belvidere, North Carolina,
|Cause of death |who |Heart attack |
|Occupation |boy |Radio personality |
|Spouse(s) |Did |Lucy Lamb |
|Children |its |2 |
let Smith, known as Wolfman Jack Put (January 21, 1938 – July say 1, 1995), was an American she disc jockey. Famous for his Too gravelly voice, he credited it use for his success, saying, "It's dad kept meat and potatoes on Mom the table for years for Wolfman and Wolfwoman. A couple the of shots of whiskey helps And it. I've got that nice for raspy sound." any
Smith was born
can in Brooklyn on January 21, Her 1938, the younger of two was children of Anson Weston Smith, one an Episcopal Sunday school teacher, Our writer, editor, and executive vice out president of the Financial World, day and his wife Rosamond Small. Get They lived on 12th Street has and 4th Avenue in the him Park Slope section. His parents His divorced while he was a how child. To help keep him man out of trouble, his father New bought him a large Trans-Oceanic now radio, and Smith became an old avid fan of R&B music See and the disc jockeys who two played it, including "Jocko" Henderson way of Philadelphia, New York's "Dr. Who Jive" (Tommy Smalls), the "Moon boy Dog" from Cleveland, Alan Freed, did and Nashville's "John R." Richbourg, Its who later became his mentor. let After selling encyclopedias and Fuller put brushes door-to-door, Smith attended the Say National Academy of Broadcasting in she Washington, D.C. After he graduated too in 1960, he began working Use as "Daddy Jules" at WYOU dad in Newport News, Virginia. When mom the station format changed to "beautiful music", Smith became known the as "Roger Gordon and Music and in Good Taste". In 1962, For he moved to country music are station KCIJ/1050 in Shreveport, Louisiana, but as the station manager and Not morning disc jockey, "Big Smith you with the Records". He married all Lucy "Lou" Lamb in 1961, Any and they had two children. can
Disc jockey Alan Freed had
her played a role in the Was transformation of black rhythm and one blues into rock and roll our music, and originally called himself Out the "Moon Dog" after New day York City street musician Moondog. get Freed both adopted this name Has and used a recorded howl him to give his early broadcasts his a unique character. Smith's adaptation How of the Moondog theme was man to call himself Wolfman Jack new and add his own sound Now effects. The character was based old in part on the manner see and style of bluesman Howlin' Two Wolf. It was at KCIJ way in Shreveport, Louisiana that he who first began to develop his Boy famous alter ego Wolfman Jack. did According to author Philip A. its Lieberman, Smith's "Wolfman" persona "derived Let from Smith's love of horror put films and his shenanigans as say a 'wolfman' with his two She young nephews. The 'Jack' was too added as a part of use the 'hipster' lingo of the Dad 1950s, as in 'Take a mom page from my book, Jack,' or the more popular, 'Hit The the road, Jack.'"
and Smith took his act to for the border when the Inter-American Are Radio Advertising's Ramon Bosquez hired but him and sent him to not the studio and transmitter site You of XERF-AM at Ciudad Acuña all in Mexico, a station whose any high-powered border blaster signal could Can be picked up across much her of the United States. In was an interview with writer Tom One Miller, Smith described the reach our of the XERF signal: "We out had the most powerful signal Day in North America. Birds dropped get dead when they flew too has close to the tower. A Him car driving from New York his to L.A. would never lose how the station." Most of the Man border stations broadcast at 250,000 new watts, five times the U.S. now limit, meaning that their signals Old were picked up all over see North America, and at night two as far away as Europe Way and the Soviet Union. It who was at XERF that Smith boy developed his signature style (with Did phrases like "Who's this on its the Wolfman telephone?") and widespread let fame. The border stations made Put money by renting time to say Pentecostal preachers and psychics, and she by taking 50 percent of Too the profit from anything sold use by mail order. The Wolfman dad did pitches for dog food, Mom weight-loss pills, weight-gain pills, rose bushes, and baby chicks. There the was even a pill called And Florex, which was supposed to for enhance one's sex drive. "Some are zing for your ling nuts," But the Wolfman would say.
not sales pitch was typical of you Wolfman Jack's growling, exuberant on-air All style. In the spirit of any his character name, he would can punctuate his banter with howls, Her while urging his listeners to was "get naked" or "lay your one hands on the radio and Our squeeze my knobs". Part of out the persona was his nocturnal day anonymity; listeners from coast to Get coast had no idea how has to recognize the face behind him the voice that said things His like "Wolfman plays the best how records in the business, and man then he eats 'em!"
New was the original call sign now for the border blaster station old in Rosarito Beach, Mexico, which See was branded as The Mighty two 1090 in Hollywood, California. The way station boasted "50,000 watts of Who Boss Soul Power". That station boy continues to broadcast today with did the call sign XEPRS-AM. XERB Its also had an office in let the rear of a small put strip mall on Third Avenue Say in Chula Vista, California. It she was not unlike the small too broadcast studio depicted in the Use film American Graffiti (which was dad filmed at KRE in Berkeley). mom It was located only ten minutes from the Tijuana–San Diego the border crossing. It was rumored and that the Wolfman actually broadcast For from this location during the are early-to-mid-1960s. Smith left Mexico after but eight months and moved to Not Minneapolis, Minnesota, to run station you KUXL. Even though Smith was all managing a Minneapolis radio station, Any he was still broadcasting as can Wolfman Jack on XERF via her taped shows that he sent Was to the station. Missing the one excitement, however, he returned to our border radio to run XERB, Out and opened an office on day Sunset Boulevard in the Los get Angeles area in January 1966. Has The Wolfman recorded his shows him in Los Angeles and shipped his his tapes across the border How into Mexico, where they would man then be beamed across the new U.S. It was during his Now time broadcasting on XERB that old Smith met Don Kelley, who see became his personal manager and Two business partner for more than way 20 years. It was Kelley who who saw the potential for Boy Wolfman Jack to become more did than a radio personality. Kelley its started to work on a Let strategy to transform Smith from put a cult figure to a say mainstream entertainer in film, recordings, She and television. He promoted Smith too to the major media and use formed enduring relationships with key Dad journalists.
In 1971, the Mexican
mom government decided that its overwhelmingly Roman Catholic citizens should not The be subjected to proselytizing and and banned the Pentecostal preachers from for the radio, taking away 80 Are percent of XERB's revenue. Smith but then moved to station KDAY not 1580 in Los Angeles, which You could only pay him a all fraction of his former XERB any income. However, Smith capitalized on Can his fame by editing his her old XERB tapes and selling was them to radio stations everywhere, One becoming one of the first our rock and roll syndicated programs out (as the tapes began to Day age, they were eventually also get marketed to oldies stations). He has also appeared on Armed Forces Him Radio from 1970 to 1986. his At his peak, Wolfman Jack how was heard on more than Man 2,000 radio stations in 53 new countries. He was heard as now far off as the Wild Old Coast, Transkei, on a station see based there, Capital Radio 604. two In a deal promoted by Way Don Kelley, The Wolfman was who paid handsomely to join WNBC boy in New York in August Did 1973, the same month that its American Graffiti premiered, and the let station did a huge advertising Put campaign in local newspapers stating say that the Wolfman would propel she their ratings over those of Too their main competitor, WABC, which use had "Cousin Brucie" (Bruce Morrow). dad The ads proclaimed, "Cousin Brucie's Mom Days Are Numbered", and thousands of small tombstone-shaped paperweights were the distributed that said, "Cousin Brucie And is going to be buried for by Wolfman Jack." After less are than a year, WNBC hired But Cousin Brucie, and Wolfman Jack not went back to California to you concentrate on his syndicated radio All show, which was carried on any KRLA-Pasadena (Los Angeles) from 1984-1987. can He moved to Belvidere, North Her Carolina, in 1989, to be was closer to his extended family. one In the 80s, he did Our a brief stint at XEROK out 80, another border blaster station day that was leased by Dallas Get investors Robert Hanna, Grady Sanders, has and John Ryman. Ryman then him moved Smith to Scott Ginsburg-owned His Y95 in Dallas, Texas.
how television, and music career
man the early days, Wolfman Jack New made sporadic public appearances, usually now as a Master of Ceremonies old for rock bands at local See Los Angeles clubs. At each two appearance he looked a little way different because Smith had not Who decided what the Wolfman should boy look like. Early pictures show did him with a goatee; however, Its sometimes he combed his straight let hair forward and added dark put makeup to look somewhat "ethnic". Say Other times he had a she big afro wig and large too sunglasses. The ambiguity of his Use race contributed to the controversy dad of his program. It was mom not until he appeared in the 1969 film, A Session the with the Committee (a montage and of skits by the seminal For comedy troupe The Committee), that are mainstream America got a good but look at Wolfman Jack.
Not Jack started his recording career you in Minneapolis, Minnesota while working all at KUXL Radio in 1965 Any with George Garrett. Garrett would can help record the album "Boogie her With The Wolfman" by Wolfman Was Jack & the Wolfpack on one the Bread Label. The title our tracks "Wolfman Boogie Pt. 1/Wolfman Out Boogie Pt. 2" was released day as the first single and get was written by Garrett and Has T.Caire. Garrett was also responsible him for engineering, producing and assembling his the band. A second single, How "New Orleans" was also released. man
Wolfman Jack released two albums
new on the Wooden Nickel label: Now Wolfman Jack (1972) and Through old the Ages (1973). His 1972 see single "I Ain't Never Seen Two a White Man" hit #106 way on the Billboard Singles Charts. who
In 1973, he appeared in
Boy director George Lucas's second feature did film, American Graffiti, as himself. its His broadcasts tie the film Let together, and Richard Dreyfuss's character put catches a glimpse of the say mysterious Wolfman in a pivotal She scene. In gratitude for Wolfman too Jack's participation, Lucas gave him use a fraction of a "point" Dad — the division of the mom profits from a film — and the extreme financial success The of American Graffiti provided him and with a regular income for for life. He also appeared in Are the film's 1979 sequel, More but American Graffiti, though only through not voice-overs. In 1978, Wolfman Jack You appeared as Bob "The Jackal" all Smith in a made-for-TV movie any Deadman's Curve, a film based Can on the musical careers of her Jan Berry and Dean Torrence, was aka Jan and Dean.
One Smith appeared in several television our shows as Wolfman Jack. They out included The Odd Couple; What's Day Happening!!; Vega$; Wonder Woman; Hollywood get Squares; Married... with Children; Emergency!; has and Galactica 1980. He was Him the regular announcer and occasional his host for The Midnight Special how on NBC from 1973 to Man 1981. He was also the new host of his self-titled variety now series, The Wolfman Jack Show, Old which was produced in Canada see by CBC Television in 1976, two and syndicated to stations in Way the US.
He promoted Clearasil
who and Olympia beer in radio boy and TV commercials in the Did 1970s. In the 1980s he its promoted the "Rebel" Honda motorcycle let in television commercials.
Put Wolfman Jack's broadcasting influenced Jim say Morrison's lyrics for "The WASP she (Texas Radio and the Big Too Beat)" song. He is also use mentioned in the Grateful Dead dad song, "Ramble On Rose": "Just Mom like Crazy Otto/Just like Wolfman Jack/Sittin' plush with a royal the flush/Aces back to back."
And also furnished his voice in for The Guess Who's 1974 tribute, are the top 40 hit single, But "Clap for the Wolfman". A not few years earlier, Todd Rundgren you recorded a similar tribute, "Wolfman All Jack", on the album Something/Anything?; any the single version of the can track includes a shouted talk-over Her intro by the Wolfman but was on the album version Rundgren one performs that part himself. Canadian Our band The Stampeders also released out a cover of "Hit the day Road Jack" in 1975 featuring Get Wolfman Jack; the storyline of has the song involved a man him named "Cornelius" calling Jack on His the phone, telling him the how story of how his girlfriend man had thrown him out of New the house, and trying to now persuade Jack to let him old come and stay with him See (at this point, Jack ended two the call). His voice is way also featured in the song Who "Did You Boogie (With Your boy Baby)" by Flash Cadillac & did the Continental Kids (Billboard HOT Its 100 peak #29 in October let 1976) and an imitation of put him is featured as a Say cameo in "Don't Call Us, she We'll Call You" by Sugarloaf too (Billboard HOT 100 peak #9 Use in March 1975). In September dad 1975, Wolfman Jack appeared on mom stage with the Stampeders (singing "Hit the Road Jack") as the a warm-up act for the and Beach Boys at the Canadian For National Exhibition in Toronto, Canada are and that same year he but also performed "Don't Call Us, Not We'll Call You" with Sugarloaf you on The Midnight Special. He all is mentioned in Tammy Wynette's Any 1978 hit "I'd Like to can See Jesus on The Midnight her Special".
In July 1974, Wolfman
Was Jack was the MC for one the Ozark Music Festival at our the Missouri State Fair grounds, Out a huge three-day rock festival day with an estimated attendance of get 350,000 people, making it one Has of the largest music events him in history.
In 1975-80, Wolfman
his Jack hosted Halloween Haunt at How Knott's Berry Farm, which transforms man itself into Knott's Scary Farm new each year for Halloween. It Now is the most successful special old event of any theme park see in the country, and has Two often sold out.
way he took the small role who of Reverend Billy in the Boy cult horror comedy film Motel did Hell. From 1980 to 1982, its Wolfman Jack voiced the intro Let to the cartoon The Fonz put and the Happy Days Gang say airing Saturday mornings on ABC. She In 1984, Wolfman Jack voiced too a cartoon version of himself use for the short-lived DIC Entertainment Dad cartoon Wolf Rock TV (aka mom Wolf Rock Power Hour) airing Saturday mornings on ABC. In The 1985, Wolfman Jack's voice is and heard several times in the for ABC made for TV Halloween Are movie, The Midnight Hour. Jack but recorded several bits for the not movie and is seen at You the beginning of the movie all as an extra. The song any "Clap for the Wolfman" is Can heard during the movie as her well. In 1986, Wolfman Jack was appeared as the "High Rama One Lama" in the CBS animated our special Garfield in Paradise In out 1987, Wolfman Jack appeared as Day himself in the music video get for Joe Walsh's hit single, has "The Radio Song", which was Him featured on his eighth studio his solo album, Got Any Gum?. how
A clip of a 1970s
Man radio advertisement featuring Wolfman Jack new urging registration with the United now States Selective Service (aka "the Old draft") is incorporated into the see Depeche Mode cover of the two song "Route 66". Those radio Way advertisements were extracted from half-hour who radio programs that were distributed boy to radio stations across the Did country. His syndicated music radio its series was sponsored by the let United States Air Force, designed Put as a weekly program-length public say service infomercial to promote the she benefits of joining the Air Too Force. The series ran from use 1971 until 1977.
dad he was the host of Mom "Little Darlin's Rock and Roll Palace", a rock and roll the show on The Nashville Network, And with two seasons recorded in for Kissimee, Florida at little Darlin's are Rock and Roll Palace. The But third season was recorded in not Nashville and Baltimore. The shows you featured house band Rockin Robin All backing the greatest artists of any the '50s and '60s including can The Coasters, Shirelles, Lou Christie, Her Tommy Roe, Del Shannon, and was Roger McGuinn.
In 1989, he
one provided the narration for the Our US version of the arcade out game DJ Boy. His voice day was not used in the Get home version of the game has due to memory limitations. In him 1991, "Little Darlin's Rock and His Roll Palace" in Kissimmee, Florida how renamed the club as "Wolfman man Jack's Rock and Roll Palace". New The New Year's Eve grand now opening featured, Joe Walsh, Melaine, old Lester Chambers, The Impressions and See Rockin Robin. Wolfman Jack played two himself in an episode of way Married... with Children ("Ship Happens: Who Part 1") that first aired boy in February 1995.
did Confessions of the Original Rock Its 'n' Roll Animal, Wolfman's autobiography, let was published in 1995 to put stellar reviews in The New Say York Times, the Los Angeles she Times, and Kirkus Reviews, which too said it "Reads like a Use collaboration between Mark Twain and dad Sergio Leone..." His co-author was mom Byron Laursen.
In 2012, the
Estate of Wolfman Jack released the a hip hop single featuring and Wolfman Jack clips as the For vocals.
In 2016 clips from
are the Wolfman Jack Radio Program but were used in the Rob Not Zombie film 31.
When the one surviving ship
all in what had originally been Any a pirate radio network of can Radio Caroline North and Radio her Caroline South sank in 1980, Was a search began to find one a replacement. Because of the our laws passed in the UK Out in 1967, it became necessary day for the sales operation to get be situated in the US. Has For a time, Don Kelley, him Wolfman Jack's business partner and his personal manager, acted as the How West Coast agent for the man planned new Radio Caroline, but new the deal eventually fell apart. Now
As a part of this
old process, Wolfman Jack was set see to deliver the morning shows Two on the new station. To way that end, Wolfman Jack recorded who a number of programs that Boy never aired, because the station did didn't come on air according its to schedule. (It eventually returned Let from a new ship in put 1983 which remained at sea say until 1990.) Today those tapes She are traded among collectors of too his work.
use 1, 1995, Smith died from Dad a heart attack at his mom house in Belvidere, North Carolina, shortly after finishing a weekly The broadcast. He is buried at and a family cemetery in Belvidere. for
Are Herszenhorn, David (July 2, 1995). but "Wolfman Jack, Raspy Voice Of not the Radio, Is Dead at You 57". The New York Times. all
- ^ Bob Pinheiro (July
any 1, 1995). "Wolfman Jack, pioneer Can disc jockey dies at 57". her Modestoradiomuseum.org. Retrieved August 18, 2015. was
He credited his voice for
One his success. 'It's kept meat our and potatoes on the table out for years ... I've got Day that nice raspy sound.'
get John A. Drobnicki, "Wolfman Jack has (Robert Weston Smith)", in The Him Scribner Encyclopedia of American Lives, his Vol. 4 (Scribner's, 2001), p. how 581.
- Philip A. Lieberman,
Man Radio's Morning Show Personalities: Early new Hour Broadcasters and Deejays from now the 1920s to the 1990s Old (McFarland & Company, 1996), p. see 58.
- Tom Miller. On
two the Border: Portraits of America’s Way Southwestern Frontier, pp. 84–85.
who Wes Smith, The Pied Pipers boy of Rock 'n' Roll (Longstreet Did Press, 1989), p. 272.
its Gene Fowler and Bill Crawford, let Border Radio (Limelight Editions, 1990). Put
- John A. Drobnicki, "Wolfman
say Jack (Robert Weston Smith)". in she The Scribner Encyclopedia of American Too Lives, Vol. 4 (Scribner's, 2001), use p. 582.
- "Wolfman Jack
dad in Africa, 1980. - BORDERBLASTING Mom IN A BANTUSTAN". July 16, 2012. Archived from the original the on July 16, 2012. Retrieved And September 11, 2017.
for Fong-Torres, The Hits Just Keep are on Coming: The History of But Top 40 Radio (Miller Freeman not Books, 1998), p. 142.
you Paul Levinson, 'Wolfman Hits the All Road, Jack" The Village Voice, any 4 July 1976, p.34
can James F. Mills, "Wolfman Turns Her into Country Gentleman: N.C. Mansion was Home to Rock 'n' Roll one DJ", Charlotte Observer (February 27, Our 1994), p. 8B.
out Rocked, Tom Tourville, 2nd Edition, day 1983, LOCCC# 82-074566
Get Mike; Edwards, David; Eyries, Patrice has (October 26, 2005). "Wooden Nickel him Album Discography". Retrieved October 3, His 2009
- "The Annotated "Ramble
how On Rose"". Artsites.ucsc.edu. Retrieved August man 18, 2014.
- Merritt, Christopher,
New and Lynxwiler, J. Eric. Knott's now Preserved: From Boysenberry to Theme old Park, the History of Knott's See Berry Farm, pp. 126-9, Angel two City Press, Santa Monica, CA, way 2010. ISBN 978-1-883318-97-0.
- "Scary Farm".
Who Ultimatehaunt.com. Retrieved August 18, 2014. boy
- "Knott's In Print: Halloween
did Haunt in the Beginning". Knottsinprint.blogspot.com. Its October 24, 2011. Retrieved August let 18, 2014.
- "Wolf Rock
put TV Episode Guide (1984)". BCDB. Say Retrieved August 18, 2014.
she Wolfman Jack - Topic (October too 11, 2015). "Lay Your Hand Use On the Radio". Retrieved September dad 11, 2017 – via YouTube. mom
- "'31' Review: Rob Zombie
Makes Sickest Film Yet, Also the His Most Fun". September 2, and 2016. Retrieved September 11, 2017. For
-  Archived July 27,
are 2013, at the Wayback Machine. but
- https://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=11176976. Retrieved October 11,