Freed, Alan

Freed, Alan

(1922–65) disk jockey; born in Palm Springs, Calif. In the 1940s and 1950s he worked for radio stations in Ohio, Pennsylvania, and New York where he stirred controversy by playing African-American rhythm-and-blues records for white audiences and by sponsoring integrated concerts. In 1962 he pleaded guilty to commercial bribery during a broadcasting industry scandal; some believe he was scapegoated for sponsoring black performers.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.