Monday, June 16, 2014

Kemal Amin "Casey" Kasem (April 27, 1932 – June 15, 2014)

Casey Kasem (4/27/32-6/15/14)
Kasem was born in Detroit, Michigan on April 27, 1932 to Lebanese Druze immigrant parents. They settled in Michigan, where they worked as grocers.
In the 1940s, “Make Believe Ballroom” reportedly inspired Kasem to follow a career in radio and later host a national radio hits countdown show.

He was an American disc jockey, radio personality and actor, best known for being the host of the music radio programs American Top 40,  American Top 20, and American Top 10 from 1970 until his retirement in 2009.

Kasem founded the American Top 40 franchise in 1970 along with Don Bustany, Tom Rounds and Ron Jacobs, and hosted it from 1970 to 1988 and from 1998 to 2004. Between January 1989 and early 1998, he was the host of Casey's Top 40, Casey's Hot 20, and Casey's Countdown. Also beginning in 1998, Kasem hosted two adult contemporary spin-offs of American Top 40; American Top 20 and American Top 10. Kasem retired from AT20 and AT10 on July 4, 2009 and both shows ended on that day.

In October 2013, Kerri Kasem said her father was suffering from Parkinson's disease, which a doctor had diagnosed in 2007, but a few months later, she said he was diagnosed with Lewy body dementia, which is often difficult to differentiate from Parkinson's.  Due to his condition, he was no longer able to speak.

On June 15, 2014, Kasem died at St. Anthony's Hospital in Gig Harbor, Washington at the age of 82. He was survived by his wife, four children, and four grandchildren.


If the beat gets to the audience, and the message touches them, you've got a hit. Casey Kasem
For the most part, that message hasn't changed a lot over the years - love is still love, and heartbreak is still heartbreak. Casey Kasem

American Top 40, Casey Kasem The 70's

American Top 40, Casey Kasem July 24, 1982

American Top 40, Casey Kasem February 15, 1986


Anonymous said...

Omg, while listening to the countdowns, it seems like just yesterday Petra!

He always had an interesting piece of trivia during the countdowns.

And was always a gentleman. K. :)

petra michelle; Whose role is it anyway? said...

Wholeheartedly agree, K.!

Eventually, every music station had its own countdown, but none compared to Casey Kasem's. The
nostalgia! :))

Ron said...

Oh, Petra...what a faaaabulous tribute to Casey Kasem! Listening a bit to each countdown you posted here, felt like a flashback. Isn't it amazing how hearing music instantly takes you back to that time and you FEEL what you felt like back then?

Casey had the most distinct and wonderful voice. It was made for being a radio host, wasn't it?

Love the two quotes you shared. Especially the second one.

R.I.P. in Casey. You will be missed, however, your voice will live on forever in our hearts!

petra michelle; Whose role is it anyway? said...

I can remember these countdowns as if they were yesterday, Ron.

You're absolutely right. It seems music, more than any other art form, takes you right back to that place... :))