The Philadelphia Music Alliance (PMA), a community-based not-for-profit organization dedicated to the preservation and promotion of Philadelphia’s rich musical legacy, announced legendary WMGK-FM Morning Personality John DeBella has been named among the 2023 Walk of Fame inductees.
The announcement took place during a press conference on Tuesday, February 21st at the Kimmel Cultural Campus. Established in 1986, the Walk of Fame, a creation of the Philadelphia Music Alliance, is a must-see tourist attraction on Philadelphia’s Avenue of the Arts and is located along Broad Street’s Avenue of the Arts. This series of over 100 bronze commemorative plaques honors Philadelphia area musicians and music professionals who have made a significant contribution to the world of music. The Walk of Fame recognizes the vast contribution of Philadelphia to all musical genres, and encourages the creation, celebration, and historical preservation of Philadelphia music.
Other 2023 honorees include: Leslie Odom, Jr., Governor Rendell, the Bacon Brothers, The Tymes, Patty Jackson and James DePreist. In addition, PMA will present a special award to Kenny Gamble, Leon Huff & Thom Bell as “The Sound of Philadelphia.”
The PMA will reveal the honorees’ bronze commemorative plaques on April 20, 2023, during a day-long celebration on Broad Street, which concludes with the Philadelphia Music Alliance’s Gala Celebration, which will be held at Vie (600 N Broad Street, Philadelphia).
John DeBella’s name has been synonymous with Philadelphia radio entertainment for over 47 years. John created comedy for The National Lampoon Radio Hour, the syndicated radio program that starred John Belushi, Chevy Chase, Dan Akroyd, Bill Murray and many others.
As one of the originators of the Morning Zoo format, John’s morning show not only became an unprecedented number one rated show in Philadelphia, he also achieved the highest ratings in local radio history at that time. In addition to his nationally honored radio career, John has appeared as a stand-up comedian, is a local EMMY award winning host & producer, has co-anchored the Philadelphia Mummers Parade and has won numerous local service and humanitarian awards. Along with his morning show on Classic Rock 102.9 WMGK, John heads Husky Productions, a local TV production company.
“This is the greatest honor of my career,” said DeBella. “I couldn’t be happier!”
“Whether introducing Philly to new artists, supporting budding stars, orchestrating in-studio performances or interviewing nearly every rock star there is… John has done so in a most unique and entertaining style,” said Beasley Media Group Vice President of Talent Development and WMGK/WMMR Program Director Bill Weston. “For 40 years, John’s been a credit to this town and our industry.”
“When you think of iconic Philadelphia radio personalities, John DeBella has got to be at the top of the list,” said Beasley Media Group Philadelphia Vice President and Market Manager Joe Bell. “For over 40 years, John has been at the top of Philly radio, and was one of the creators of the “Morning Zoo” format that dominated morning radio across the United States in the 80s and 90s.”
“The Walk of Fame is the City’s most impressive public monument to the people who have made Philadelphia a great music city,” said Mark Schulz, Managing Director of the Philadelphia Music Alliance. “Our 2023 inductees have deeply influenced how music is experienced not only in Philadelphia, but around the world. We are excited to honor these incredible artists, bands, and personalities on Broad Street this April.”
For more information, please visit philadelphiamusicalliance.org.
John DeBella, Philadelphia Music Alliance Chairman Alan Rubens and the Tymes