Monday, February 29, 2016
R.I.P.: Charlie Tuna Has Died From Cancer
Born Art Ferguson on April 18, 1944 and at age 16, Tuna began working at his hometown's radio station, KGFW. Then, he went to work at KLEO in Wichita, Kansas for a year with the air name "Billy O'Day". He then worked for KOMA Radio in Oklahoma City in 1966, where he took over the "Charlie Tuna" pseudonym from Chuck Riley, who had used it for one show the week prior to Tuna's arrival. Tuna then moved on to WMEX in Boston for the first 9 months of 1967.
In late 1967, KHJ in Los Angeles offered Tuna the 9 to noon slot, where he debuted on Thanksgiving Day 1967. On February 9, 1971, he had just commenced his morning show at 6:00 a.m. when the San Fernando earthquake occurred. In 1972 he became one of the original DJs at KROQ AM, a new Top 40 station (formerly Country KBBQ). In 1973 be moved to KKDJ as program director and morning personality. He presided over its 1975 call-letter change to KIIS-AM, and broadcast the first show at KIIS-FM as it began its AM-FM simulcast. He also worked at KTNQ, KHTZ (later KBZT), KRLA, KODJ (later KCBS-FM), KMPC, KIKF, and KLAC.
He worked at KBIG 104.3 where he hosted a long running morning show Charlie Tuna in the Morning which aired from 5 to 10 am. His last full-time morning show aired on September 17, 2007, when the station flipped to a non-rhythmic-based adult contemporary format, as 104.3 My FM. He returned to radio February 9, 2008 when he became the weekend personality on Los Angeles oldies station K-Earth 101. CBS on August 27, 2015 began down sizing their stations in Los Angeles, at which point Charlie moved on to expand his syndicated radio business with CharlieTunaSyndication.com.
Tuna served as announcer for Casey Kasem on his 1980's television program America's Top 10, and occasionally filled in for Kasem on his radio programs American Top 20 and American Top 10 . He co-hosted Your Good Time Oldies Magazine from 1992 to 1995, and he produced and hosted Back to the 70s. 52 weekly episodes of Back to the 70s were produced; Kelly continued to provide reruns to stations across the country until 2008, even though Tuna had long since left the program.
Tuna had a year long run in 2009 of a 5-hour classic hits daily and weekend show, syndicated through United Stations Radio Network in New York. He joined Black Card Radio in Los Angeles in 2010 as host of a 5-hour weekend show Charlie Tuna - The 70's, which is distributed nationally and internationally, and later added a 5-hour daily and weekend show for all radio formats. He moved his radio station voice imaging business to Black Card Radio later that year. In 2011 he introduced the syndicated "Charlie Tuna's Hollywood Minute", 4 to 5 top entertainment stories each day. Tuna reunited with United Stations Radio Network in New York in 2013 to do the ad sales for his Black Card Radio shows.
Posted 3:59:00 PM