Art Laboe death: L.A.’s radio community pays tribute to icon

The Los Angeles music and radio communities mourned the loss of hit “Oldies but Goodies” disc jockey Art Laboe, who passed away on Friday.

The Instagram page for his syndicated show The Art Laboe Connection announced that the radio legend died at his Palm Springs home at the age of 97 after battling pneumonia.

“Art Laboe’s legacy will endure as his team continues to produce his current nightly request and syndicated radio show, The Art Laboe Connection,” the Instagram post reads.

Laboe, whose voice filled the airwaves of Southern California for more than 70 years, was known for pioneering rock ‘n’ roll on the West Coast and creating the compilation album Oldies But Goodies. He became a popular character for generations of fans, especially Latinos, for his call-in dedication show, which aired first on HOT 92.3 FM and then on KDAY-FM (93.5).

A memorial to the Los Angeles radio veteran will be announced later, but numbers from local LA radio stations are already paying tribute online.

“RIP to the unique #ArtLaboe”, tweeted KCRW DJ Candace Silva-Torres. “The end of an era. Stay up late, listen to these dedications.”

“Art Laboe was one of the best DJs and it was a lovely Sunday tradition to listen to his radio show of love songs.” tweeted KCRW host Tyler Boudreaux.

Anthony Valadez, co-host of KCRW’s “Morning Becomes Eclectic” tweeted a photo by Laboe, noting that “nobody could ever do shout-outs like this OG”

KDAY said goodbye to Laboe, calling him “our longtime family member.”

“Thank you for all the many years and great times you’ve had here with us at 93.5 KDAY!” Sender tweeted.

Romeo Mastin, the co-host of KDAY’s “Morning Show,” paid tribute to Laboe, his “longtime friend and mentor,” with a video on Instagram. In the clip, Mastin and Laboe can be seen backstage sharing radio stories and laughing.

“Thank you for believing in me, encouraging me and allowing me to be a part of your amazing journey,” Mastin wrote in his caption. “We’ve told so many stories over the years and you’ve always told me ‘I have this THING’ that will bring joy to others and never stop smiling.

“I know you’re smiling from heaven because this city, the world and everyone who tunes into the @artlaboeconnection LOVES YOU!!! and I will do my part to continue your legacy,” added Mastin.

Also the hip-hop station Power 106 Laboe recalled on Twitternoting that “his Sunday night main show will not be the same on our sister station @935kday”.

Amoeba Music also remembered Laboe on social media. Taking to Twitter, the popular music store shared a photo of one of Laboe’s Dedicated to You CDs.

“Rest In Peace Art Laboe” said the store tweet. “The broadcast legend, king of dedications and longtime host of ‘Oldies but Goodies’ has died aged 97.”

Times contributor Esmeralda Bermudez contributed to this report. Art Laboe death: L.A.’s radio community pays tribute to icon

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