The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame + Museum

Tom Donahue

Induction category: Non-Performer


Tom “Big Daddy” Donahue has been called the father of progressive radio. As a deejay and executive at San Francisco radio stations KMPX and KSAN in the late Sixties and early Seventies, Donahue pioneered “free-form” radio on the largely ignored FM band and revolutionized radio broadcasting in America. A Rolling Stone article that he wrote in 1967 bore the headline, “AM Radio Is Dead and Its Rotting Corpse Is Stinking Up the Airwaves.” As Rolling Stone noted in 1969, “Donahue was the moving force behind the transition of KMPX-FM [in 1967] from a foreign-language outlet into the country’s first full-time ...

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Tom Donahue Highlights