JIM LADD,
1948-2023

Jim Ladd, the DJ and radio producer who was a cornerstone of free-form radio in his early years and a classic rock legend decades later, died Sunday (12/17). He was 75.

Ladd suffered a heart attack late Saturday night (12/16), DJ Meg Griffin announced on SiriusXM Monday afternoon in the timeslot of Ladd's Deep Tracks show.

"He never stopped caring," Griffin said of Ladd. "He delivered the truth. ... At his base, Jim Ladd was about love."

A DJ for more than for more than 50 years, Ladd was Los Angeles’ #1 FM DJ for eight years in the late 1970s and early ‘80s during his run at KMET. While at the Mighty MET, Ladd created and hosted Innerview, an hour-long nationally syndicated program that aired on more than 160 stations between 1974 and 1986. Among the subjects he interviewed were John Lennon, Pink Floyd, U2, Joni Mitchell, Eagles and Led Zeppelin.

He also created the nationally syndicated show Headsets and famously created thematic sets of songs that became his trademark.

Ladd started in radio when free-form FM was starting to peak, beginning at KNAC in 1969, then moving to KLOS in 1971 where he worked for four years. Ladd then spent nine years at KMET.

Ladd rejoined KLOS in 1997, leaving for SiriusXM in 2011 to host a show on the Deep Tracks channel.

Beyond the airwaves, Ladd played himself on Roger WatersRadio K.A.O.S. and toured with the Pink Floyd bassist; played a DJ in Cameron Crowe’s Say Anything; and was the inspiration for Tom Petty and the HeartbreakersThe Last DJ. Griffin opened Monday's show with Petty's "The Last DJ."

He was named Air Personality of the Year in 2000 by The Los Angeles Music Awards and received The Hollywood Arts Council’s Media Arts Award in 2007.

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