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Art Bell has left the Planet

By Patrick Van Roy On April 15th, 2018

We lost one of Radio’s Greats this weekend, my heart breaks. Thanks for the endless late nights of some of the best Radio ever created.

Arthur William Bell III (June 17, 1945 – April 13, 2018) was an American broadcaster and author. He was the founder and the original host of the paranormal-themed radio program Coast to Coast AM, which is syndicated on hundreds of radio stations in the U.S. and Canada.[4] He also created and hosted its companion show Dreamland.

Art Bell’s Coast to Coast Am was one of the best radio shows ever created. He specialised in interviewing the guests that no one else would interview. He treated all his guests as serious commentators no matter how crazy or off the wall their topic matter was. He was one of the best objective interviewers ever to take to the airways.

His specialty however was U.F.O.’s and the Paranormal. He interviewed both some of the greatest Scientific minds of our age as well as some of the craziest bastards you’ve ever heard. Each was given a serious quality interview and treated with total respect for their views. He was the true Consummate Professional in the field of Interview Journalism.

I spent many years listening to his shows which still run every week in a series called “Somewhere in Time”.

Art Bell III was born in Jacksonville, North Carolina, on June 17, 1945.[9]

Bell was always interested in radio, and at the age of 13 became a licensed amateur radio operator. Bell held an Amateur Extra Classlicense, which is in the top U.S. Federal Communications Commission license class. His call sign was W6OBB.

Bell served in the U.S. Air Force as a medic during the Vietnam War and in his free time operated a pirate radio station at Amarillo Air Force Base. He would make a point of playing anti-war music (like “Eve of Destruction” and “Fortunate Son“) that was not aired on the American Forces Network.[10]

After leaving military service he stayed in Asia, living on the Japanese island of Okinawa where he worked as a disc jockey for KSBK, the only non-military English-language station in Japan. While there, he set a Guinness World Record by staying on the air for 116 hours and 15 minutes. The money raised there allowed Bell to charter a Douglas DC-8, fly to Vietnam, and rescue 130 Vietnamese orphansstranded in Saigon at the war’s end. They were eventually brought to the United States and adopted by American families.[11]

Bell returned to the United States and studied engineering at the University of Maryland, College Park. He dropped out and returned to radio as a board operator and chief engineer, and had opportunity to be on the air a few times. For several years he worked behind and in front of the microphone. After a period of working in cable television, in 1986 the 50,000-watt KDWN in Las Vegas, Nevada, offered Bell a five-hour time slot in the middle of the night. Syndication of his program to other radio stations began in 1993.

The fact that he left us on Friday the 13th would be something he would have appreciated.

a great loss…. you can read more at wiki… it’s worth the time.

 

 

9 Responses to “Art Bell has left the Planet”

  1. Strange guy, But entertaining

    He was a big deal on late night AM radio for years

    He moved to the Philippines and tried to do the US show from there, Which did not work at all. A lot of the radio stations dropped him.

  2. Don Imus just retired, involuntary

    The loss of he and Bell is the end of an era

    They had become barely known, when they were once pretty big stars

    . Imus used to take calls from Bill Clinton, Trump, Van Morrison

    But his retirement barely made the papers here

  3. Pat, check your mail please.

  4. certainly Paul

  5. Many thanx.

  6. Tomorrow 11am gmt

  7. At one point for several years Nationally the 3 top stars on Radio were Stern, Limbaugh and Bell….

    Imus surprisingly never really took off outside of NY. I thought he would have.

  8. I don’t know about that; he had dozens of affiliated stations all across the country at one time. He is in the broadcasters Hall of Fame for whatever that’s worth

    He apparently was a very nasty guy in real life, with much bigger ego that his talent would’ve warranted

    He appparently used racist names against Robin Quivers , And was very jealous of Howard Stern’s success

    He ends his career fairly unknown, and he deserves that IMO

  9. so speaks a man who raved about Michael Savage for years until he grew tired at being laughed at…. what you don’t know fills Libraries.

    For several years Nationally the 3 top stars on Radio were Stern, Limbaugh and Bell, but the God of all Knowledge Phantom who knows all… (it must be true it’s in the NYT) says he doubts it…..

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