Mark Madden

Mark Madden

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DR. JOHNNY FEVER, RIP


Legendary radio DJ Dr. Johnny Fever passed away. He was 81. 

Fever’s real name was John Caravella. He was best known for his tenure at Cincinnati’s WKRP, a rock station that compiled high ratings after a format change from easy listening. 

Fever previously enjoyed success in Los Angeles but was fired for saying “booger” on-air. 

Fever (using the name Max) finished his career quietly as the program director at WFPP in Point Place, Wisc. 

Fever also worked under these names:

  • Johnny Sunshine, Boss Jock.
  • Johnny Duke
  • Johnny Style
  • Johnny Cool
  • Johnny Midnight
  • Heavy Early

Fever also hosted a TV dance show using the alias Rip Tide. 

Fever’s high tolerance for alcohol was odd and notorious. The more Fever drank, the sharper his senses got. (See below.)

Fever was the alter ego of veteran actor Howard Hesseman. 

Hesseman’s transformation into Dr. Johnny Fever on the first episode of “WKRP in Cincinnati” (see below) is one of the great moments in the history of TV sitcoms.

Howard Hesseman, RIP. “We all in critical condition, babies, but you can tell me where it hurts...” 

Thumbnail via Getty Images


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