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| Robert Weston (Bob) Smith was born on January 21, 1938, in
Brooklyn, New York. He was a gravelly-voiced disc jockey who became
world famous in the 1960s and 1970s under the stage name of Wolfman
Jack. Smith was a fan of disc jockey Alan Freed who helped to turn
African-American rhythm and blues into rock and roll music. Freed
originally called himself the "Moondog" after New York City
street musician Moondog. Freed both adopted this name and used a
recorded howl to give his early broadcasts a unique character. Smith's
adaptation of the Moondog theme was to call himself Wolfman Jack and add
his own sound effects. The character was based in part on the manner and
style of bluesman Howling Wolf. Wolfman Jack died of a heart attack in
Belvidere, North Carolina, on July 1, 1995, age 57. The day before his
death, he had finished broadcasting his last live radio program, a
weekly program nationally syndicated from Planet Hollywood in downtown
Washington, D.C. Wolfman Jack said that night, "I can't wait to get
home and give Lou a hug, I haven't missed her this much in years."
Wolfman had been on the road, promoting his new autobiography Have
Mercy!. Lou Lamb Smith, Wolfman's wife, got that hug. He died shortly
after in his home.
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