Dees started his radio career while still in high school at Greensboro, N.C., station WGBG. The first song played on Dees’ inaugural broadcast: “Gentle on My Mind” by Glen Campbell.
Dees says the first record he ever bought was “I Got You (I Feel Good)” by James Brown.
Dees’ novelty single “Disco Duck” held the No. 1 spot on the Billboard singles charts for two months in 1976, eventually selling 6 million copies.
During the height of “Disco Duck’s” popularity, Dees was fired from WMPS, Memphis, for mentioning the song on-air.
Prior to the Ryan Seacrest brouhaha, the longest Dees had been off-air was a mandatory 45-day hiatus in 1976, following his firing from WMPS. Dees took a position at a rival station immediately afterward.
In addition to a number of short-lived TV talkshows, Dees has played himself on “Married … With Children,” “The Brady Bunch” and others. In “La Bamba,” he played legendary deejay Ted Quillin.
Billboard named Dees “radio personality of the year” 15 consecutive times.