Shadoe Stevens

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Shadoe Stevens
Shadoe Stevens at the 41st Emmy Awards cropped.jpg
Stevens at the 41st Emmy Awards, September 17, 1989
Born Terry Ingstad
(1947-11-03) November 3, 1947 (age 67)
Jamestown, North Dakota, U.S.
Occupation Radio host, voiceover, actor
Years active 1957–present

Shadoe Stevens (born Terry Ingstad; November 3, 1947) is an American radio host, voiceover actor, and television personality. He was the host of American Top 40 from 1988 to 1995. He currently hosts the internationally syndicated radio show, Top of the World, and co-hosts Mental Radio, an entertaining approach to UFOs and paranormal topics. He is the co-founder and creator of Sammy Hagar's new rock station "Cabo Wabo Radio" broadcasting worldwide from the Cabo Wabo Cantina in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. In television, he was the announcer for The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson on CBS, and as of July 2015, now serves as the primary continuity announcer for the Antenna TV network. His voice can also be heard as the voiceover for "G.O.D." in the Off-Broadway musical Altar Boyz. Stevens is also often heard on Hits & Favorites, calling in at least once a week to share wisdom with his brother Richard Stevens and their friend Lori St. James.

Early life[edit]

Stevens was born in Jamestown, North Dakota. He first came to fame in 1957, when a Life magazine article about him, entitled "America's Youngest D.J." featured a photo of Stevens broadcasting live over radio station KEYJ (now called KQDJ) in his hometown of Jamestown. The accompanying article extolled the fact that he had built his own working transmitter in the attic of his home the year before, using a "souped-up" wireless broadcasting kit with a hundred foot antenna, however it omitted the additional information that the equipment and advice needed to build the transmitter, had both been furnished by the staff engineers at KEYJ, which happened to be owned by his father and uncle; his family continues to own many radio stations in North Dakota to the current day under the Ingstad Family Media group. He was later "discovered" as personally in a "man on the street" interview by the station and was soon broadcasting a weekly rock show called Spin with Terry. During his high school years, he maintained a full-time shift at the station, developing his now-famous "slow 'n low" style of speaking, as a host of the Mister Midnight program.

College and early career[edit]

Stevens attended and graduated from the University of North Dakota, where he was a member of Sigma Nu fraternity. Majoring in Commercial Art and Radio/TV Journalism at the University of North Dakota and the University of Arizona, Stevens put himself through college working in radio at KILO in Grand Forks, North Dakota; KQWB in Fargo, North Dakota; and KIKX in Tucson, Arizona, where he quickly became the most popular DJ in town, under the on-air persona of "Jefferson K." Following college, he joined the Bill Drake-formatted station WRKO in Boston, during the winter of 1968-69. At WRKO, he worked the early evening (6-9 p.m.) shift during the station's peak in popularity. In the spring of 1970, he moved to Southern California to another Drake outlet, KHJ, as one of the last true "Boss Jocks", where his big baritone and energetic enthusiasm soon gained a following. Before long, he gained significant popularity on radio and became the announcer and sidekick on the nationally syndicated television series The Steve Allen Show.

Stevens later went on to become a radio personality and program director in Los Angeles at KRLA. Attaining status as a programmer, he was hired to make a success of KMET-FM and then to create the programming for a new radio format on a new Los Angeles station, KROQ-FM ("K-Rock"), where he remained for five years.

1980s–rise to fame[edit]

During the early 1980s, Stevens gained an additional cult following when he created and produced "Fred R. Rated for Federated," a long-running series of offbeat television commercials for The Federated Group, a chain of home electronics retailers in the western and southwestern United States. These ads were so popular they were the subject of a two-page spread in Time Magazine and led to a movie deal, television shows, and American Top 40.

In 1984, Stevens entered an inpatient treatment facility in order to overcome a drug problem that had plagued him since the late 1960s.[1]

Acting career[edit]

Stevens acted for the first time when he was coerced into auditioning for Arthur Miller's After the Fall at the University of Arizona. He not only won a role, he got the demanding lead of Quentin, who is virtually never off the stage. One local reviewer said, the young performer "commanded the stage with a commanding voice." He contributed several deadpan readings of absurd material for The Kentucky Fried Movie and then gained national recognition as the announcer for two incarnations of The Hollywood Squares (the 1986–1989 and the first 4 seasons of the 1998-2004 version), appearing in the middle square of the bottom row and guest hosting for a week during the final season of the 1980s version. He also became known for playing Kenny Beckett on the sitcom Dave's World (1993–1997) and serving as announcer for the Fender Bender 500 segments of Wake, Rattle, and Roll. He appeared as himself on an episode of The Larry Sanders Show and also on Caroline in the City. In 1988, he starred in the film Traxx. In 1990, Stevens also starred as the title character on the TV series Max Monroe: Loose Cannon. In 1992, he made a small appearance in the comedy film Mr. Saturday Night. In 1996, he provided the voice for Doc Samson in The Incredible Hulk.

In 1999, he had a cameo in a season 9 episode of Beverly Hills, 90210, playing Sonny Sharp, a former top radio DJ who befriends David Silver.

In late 2005, Stevens was hired to be The Late Late Show's announcer, a position he held until the end of March 2015 when the production contract with then-Late Late Show producer Worldwide Pants ran out at the end of a two month interregnum of guest hosts. As part of an April Fool's Day hosting swap, Stevens announced for The Price Is Right with Craig Ferguson hosting while Drew Carey with his Price is Right announcer George Gray hosted The Late Late Show on April 1, 2014.

In July 2015, Stevens was named the primary continuity announcer for Tribune Media's classic television subchannel network, Antenna TV, filling a position vacant since the death of fellow DJ and announcer Gary Owens on February 12, 2015.[2]

He is also the author of a series of children's books. The first, released in 2006, was called The Big Galoot.

Personal life[edit]

Stevens married his first wife in 1967 (divorced, 1978); he then married Cynthia Gaydos in 1980 (divorced, 1984). Most recently, he married Beverly Cunningham (an international model) in 1986. Stevens has three children, one son, Brad, from his first marriage and two daughters from his third marriage, Amber Dawn (West) (also an actress) and Chyna Rose.

Amber, appearing in the ABC Family series Greek, made an appearance on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson on July 27, 2007, with her father to promote the show. As a child, she also made a cameo appearance with her father on American Top 40 the weekend of December 24, 1989, as part of a Christmas skit.

His brother, Richard, who occasionally filled in for Shadoe on the 1986-89 version of Hollywood Squares, is a disc jockey on Citadel Media's Hits & Favorites format.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Charice's Surprising Revelation, Carmen Electra, Macy Gray & Shadoe Stevens." Oprah: Where Are They Now? Exec. Prod. Julie Simpson, Jill Van Lokeren, and Veronica Votypka. CEO/Chief Crea. Off. Oprah Winfrey. Oprah Winfrey Network. 19 October 2014.
  2. ^ "Susan Sarandon reunites with Nick Nolte for EPIX satire; South Park lands mega renewal deals; Miss Universe pageant finds new co-hosts". Cynopsis. 9 July 2015. Retrieved 9 July 2015. 

External links[edit]

Media offices
Preceded by
Casey Kasem
American Top 40 Host
1988-1995
Succeeded by
Casey Kasem
Preceded by
Gene Wood
Hollywood Squares announcer
1986-1989 (John Davidson)
1998-2002 (Tom Bergeron)
Succeeded by
Jeffrey Tambor