Jim Pruett, the comic genius and half of the legendary 101 KLOL Stevens and Pruett morning team, died Friday evening at the age of 72. He is survived by his wife Joy and his children. The Pruett family has indicated that Jim died due to heart failure.
Pruett, who along with his longtime broadcasting partner, Mark Stevens, helped define morning radio in their decades together.
Born in nearby Bay City, Pruett fell in love with radio at a very early age. In interviews for my upcoming Rock 101 KLOL documentary, Pruett told me he began his career at the age of 15 at KBWD in Brownwood, Texas.
"And then I begun my kilowatt climb to incredible markets from Brownwood to Snyder, Texas to Frederick, Oklahoma and so forth," Pruett told me. "And then finally I got Merkel, Texas. Abilene, Texas. Also I ended up in Midland, Texas. And from Midland I got to do all nights in Oklahoma City, so that put me into a big market. Oklahoma City is a big market."
After serving in Vietnam, Pruett was hired by KNUZ-AM program director Buddy McGregor and Houston radio would never the same. In those days, Pruett went by the name Tony Raven on the Night Flight show playing the "hippie" style music that would define rock and roll.
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