Personalities | Alan Freed | Fifties | Rock
(Disc jockey, 1922–65)
Freed, the DJ who gave rock’n’roll its name, fronted Moondog’s Rock’n’Roll Party at Cleveland’s WJW radio station, where he programmed mainly black R&B plus some early white rock’n’roll records. His vocal jive delighted his audience, and he also appeared in several early rock’n’roll exploitation movies, including Rock Around The Clock, Rock, Rock, Rock (both 1956) and others. He accepted a songwriting credit on Chuck Berry’s ‘Maybellene’ in exchange for helping to make it a hit, and was accused of payola, after which he died an alcoholic accused of income tax evasion.
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