Dan Ingram, the pioneering New York top 40 radio personality best known for a two-decade run at WABC New York, has died. Ingram died Sunday evening in Florida at the age of 83, according to a post by Allen Sniffen on the New York Radio Message Board.
From 1961 to 1972, Ingram was one of WABC’s signature personalities during the heyday of AM top 40 radio at one of its most successful and influential stations.
“He combined humor, an irreverent style, and impeccable timing and established himself as the leading rock radio personality in North America,” according to the National Radio Hall of Fame, which inducted him in 2007. “Ingram was the master of the ‘talk-up,’ speaking over the introduction and finishing his thoughts at the exact moment the lyrics started.”
Born in Oceanside, NY, on Sept. 7, 1934, Ingram began his five-decade radio career at small market stations including WNRC New Rochelle, NY, WALK Patchogue, NY, WNHC New Haven, CT, and WICC Bridgeport, CT, where he was known as Ray Taylor. He moved to bigger markets and moved the ratings needle for KBOX Dallas and WIL St. Louis before returning to New York to begin his legendary run at WABC.
Later in his career, Ingram hosted CBS Radio’s syndicated Top 40 Satellite Survey and did a stint on WKTU-FM New York. He joined oldies WCBS-FM New York in 1991 where he worked until he retired in 2003.
Already, remembrances are pouring into the Dan Ingram board Sniffen has set up on the New York Message Board. “Easily the Best there ever was - or will be. An inspiration and colleague,” wrote Brian Wilson, who worked with Ingram at WABC.