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Casey Kasem, Wholesome Voice of Pop Radio, Dies at 82 (NYT)
Casey Kasem, a disc jockey who never claimed to love rock ’n’ roll but who built a long and lucrative career from it, creating and hosting one of radio’s most popular syndicated pop music shows, American Top 40, died on Sunday in a hospital in Gig Harbor, Wash. He was 82. Mashable Kasem had Parkinson’s disease and dementia. His children took him off life support in a Washington hospice this week. HuffPost Kasem will be remembered as the “the king of countdowns.” He was best known for his work on American Top 40, which he hosted from 1970 to 1988, and again from 1998 until 2004, when he passed the job on to Ryan Seacrest. Kasem was also a talented voice-over artist, most famously voicing Scooby-Doo’s pal, Shaggy. THR Kasem said he wanted to be the “voice of the guy next door,” and his style was to accent the positive, considering each one of the hits a major accomplishment for each act involved. He never focused on the negative, such as a big drop-off for a particular song, and remained family-friendly. His shows also tugged at the heartstrings with such elements as “Long Distance Dedications.” Variety Kemal Amin Kasem was born in Detroit to parents who were Lebanese Druze immigrants. He graduated from Wayne State University. Kasem got his start in radio during the Korean War, working for Armed Forces Radio. Kasem was inducted into the National Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame in 1985 and the National Radio Hall of Fame in 1992.