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Rick Dees Biography
Rick Dees born Rigdon Osmond Dees III is an American entertainer, radio personality, comedian, actor, and voice artist. He is best known for his internationally syndicated radio show The Rick Dees Weekly Top 40 Countdown and for the 1976 novelty song “Disco Duck”.
Rick is a People’s Choice Award recipient, a Grammy-nominated performing artist, and Broadcast Hall of Fame inductee. He wrote two songs that appear in the film Saturday Night Fever, plus performed the title song for the film Meatballs. He co-founded the E. W. Scripps television network Fine Living, now the Cooking Channel, and has hosted Rick Dees in the Morning at 102.7 KIIS FM and Hot 92.3 in Los Angeles. Today Rick continues his own syndicated daily radio show, Daily Dees and the syndicated Rick Dees Weekly Top 40 Countdown.
Rick Dees Age
Rick was born on March 14, 1950 in Jacksonville, Florida. He is 73 years old as of 2023.
Rick Dees Family | Rick Dees Parents
Rick was born Rigdon Osmond Dees III in Jacksonville, Florida. He was raised in Greensboro, North Carolina. Information about his parents and siblings is not yet available.
Rick Dees Education
He graduated from Greensboro’s Grimsley High School and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a bachelor’s degree in motion pictures, TV, and radio.
Rick Dees Wife | Rick Dees Children
He married his wife Nancy Carmody in the year 1970 after dating for some time. The couple went through the process of divorce in the year 1976. After that he continued with his life and married Julie McWhirter in the year 1977. Rick has one child known as Kevin Dees.
Rick Dees Photos
Rick Dees Weekly Top 40
Rick began his Weekly Top 40 countdown program, still currently in syndication, in September 1983. The show was created after Rick’s station KIIS dropped American Top 40 in a dispute over the playing of network commercials. The show has been heard each weekend in over 200 countries worldwide and the Armed Forces Radio Network.
The weekly top 40 is distributed domestically by Compass Media Networks and internationally by Rick Entertainment International (through Radio Express). The Weekly Top 40 became the first English-speaking radio show to air in China in December 2008 . The syndicated Countdown is available in several different editions including Hit Radio (for contemporary hit radio stations), Hot Adult (hot adult contemporary radio stations), 80s Edition and 90s Edition on terrestrial radio stations around the world.
Rick continues distribution of his Rick Dees’Weekly Top 40 Countdown globally to terrestrial radio stations. He is also streaming in the U.S., making it the longest continuously running Hit Music Countdown in the world. Rick also continues to host the syndicated Daily Dees daily show.
Rick Dees Disco Duck
While working at WMPS AM 680 (“The Great 68”) in Memphis, Tennessee, during the disco craze of the mid- to late-1970s he was introduced to the international entertainment arena. During this time wrote and recorded “Disco Duck” in 1976, that sold more than 6 million copies. This song can be heard in Saturday Night Fever in a brief scene. A group of older people were learning to “move their feet to the disco beat”. While this platinum recording earned Rick a People’s Choice Award,and the BMI Award for record sales in one year, Rickwas expressly forbidden from playing the song on the air by station management (rival stations refused to play it for fear of promoting their competition).
Rick was fired from WMPS when he mentioned that his song, “Disco Duck”, was almost #1, and his own radio station would not let him play it. The station manager said it was a conflict of interest. Rick did not perform the actual duck vocals on the song since he could not “talk like a duck.”The duck vocals were recorded at Shoestring Productions in Memphis, Tennessee by Ken Pruitt, who moved away before the song became popular, and the vocals for the duck were done by Michael Chesney of Memphis for the concert tour. Chesney had done some comedic voices for Dees prior to Disco Duck. The tour went from Disney World to New York, NY, billed as Rick Dees and The Cast of Idiots. After a 45-day non-compete clause in his contract was satisfied, Dees was hired by RKO Radio to do the morning show at WHBQ AM 560 in Memphis.
Rick Dees Net Worth | Rick Dees Salary
Rick has an estimated net worth of $15 million, he has not yet revealed his annual salary.
Rick Dees Radio Career | Rick Dees KIIS-Fm
Rick began his radio career while still in high school at a Greensboro radio station called WGBG. He worked for several radio stations throughout the southeastern United States. They include; WCAR (now known as WXYC) in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, WSGN in Birmingham, Alabama, and WKIX in Raleigh, North Carolina.
His success at their Memphis radio station, combined with Rick’s TV appearances and hit music, motivated station owner RKO General to offer him the morning radio show in Los Angeles at 93KHJ AM. He helped their ratings, but AM music radio was rapidly losing ground to FM. Rick left KHJ,when KHJ switched to country music taking a morning position at KIIS-FM in July 1981. In a short time, Rick went back to KIIS-FM into the #1 revenue-generating radio station in America, with an asset value approaching half a billion dollars.
Rick left in 2004 because of a contract dispute after 23 years on radio station KIIS-FM. He was replaced by Ryan Seacrest. In August 2006 Rick went back to Los Angeles radio on KMVN, Movin 93.9, hosting the morning show along with Patti “Long Legs” Lopez and Mark Wong. Movin 93.9 changed format on April 15, 2009, dismissing its radio personalities and changing the format to Spanish contemporary music. This is after a leasing of the station to Mexico City business Grupo Radio Centro. Rick was one of the last voices on the station before the flip, redirecting listeners of his show to RICK.COM. Rick went back for the second time, this time at KIIS’s sister station KHHT (now KRRL)In April 20, 2011, following the station’s formatting shift to a Gold-based Rhythmic AC. Rick’s show at KHHT lasted for a year.
Rick Dees Awards
Rick has earned many accolades, including the Marconi Award, induction into both the National Radio Hall of Fame, and the National Association of Broadcasters Hall Of Fame. He received a Grammy Award nomination for his comedy album Hurt Me Baby – Make Me Write Bad Checks in 1984, and has since received the Grammy Governor’s Award.
Rick’s other comedy albums – I’m Not Crazy, Rick Dees’ Greatest Hit (The White Album), and Put It Where The Moon Don’t Shine have also enjoyed worldwide success.
Rick is an inductee in the North Carolina Music Hall Of Fame, the Tennessee Radio Hall Of Fame. He has received the Billboard Radio Personality Of The Year award for 10 consecutive years. Rick has also received a People’s Choice Award, and has been awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.