This week, as most of you know, marked the passing of legendary radio personality Casey Kasem. His rise to prominence was based mostly on a vehicle called "A-T40" or "American Top 40, a program that was for years carried on radio stations all over the world and featured the biggest hits of the current week.
Now through the years there are those who have criticized his work as trite and without heart and soul since much of what he would read on the air to introduce songs sounds contrived or at best disingenuous. But the problem with most critics is that they base criticism in jealousy not in reality. When someone is successful with any formula, people seem to find reasons to try and bring him down.
For me, though I have to admit that much of the music in the top 40 is horrible, the presentation of the hits each weekend was always interesting for me and a lot of that had to do with the messenger. I'm sure that through the years, like Ed Sullivan who really didn't know much about some of the artists he would introduce, Casey surely would hold his nose and act like each song was the greatest he had ever heard. This isn't easy. I know I couldn't do it. I would introduce something horrible by saying things like, "Well that was something! Here's something else!"
So it is with sadness and reverence that I remind you all that you can hear Casey every Saturday morning on XM radio's 70's channel as they replay one of his shows from that decade. They are still priceless and he will be missed. After all, he was not only a radio personality but the voice of Shaggy from the Scooby Do cartoons and also Robin of Batman and Robin from the animated cartoons of the early 1970's. So he has a legacy beyond radio. And yet, he will forever remain the voice of A-T 40 and as I said, he will be missed.