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Rob Durkee
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Date Posted: Tuesday, June 04, 09:36:31pm
In reply to: He was 87 's message, "Legendary L.A. deejay Humble Harve dies" on Tuesday, June 04, 09:24:00pm

He’s in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

He filled in Casey Kasem on “American Top 40” once.

He hosted his own album countdown show for about nine years.

He DJ’ed on at least 10 Los Angeles radio stations.

And he served time in prison for manslaughter for killing his adulterous wife, Mary.

Humble Harve Miller was all of the above. Sadly, he died at his Camarillo, California, home Tuesday. He was 85. His first name was pronounced “Harv.”

Here is a scoped version of the “American Top 40” show when Humble Harve was the fill-in host for the weekend of July 13, 1974…when the new #1 was “Rock Your Baby” by George McCrae...


Humble Harve came close to joining Casey Kasem’s company, Watermark, when he offered to do an LP countdown. AT40 did run one LP countdown show the weekend of August 5, 1972, when the future second AT40 host, Shadoe Stevens, researched the project.

But that’s how far the project went for Watermark. “I asked TR (Tom Rounds of Watermark) if they’d be interested in doing it,” Miller told me for my book, “American Top 40: The Countdown Of The Century.” "They were (interested), but they wanted Casey to do it. I said, ‘No, I want to do it.’ I don’t know why they didn’t take it, so I did on my own.”

So…”The National Album Countdown” hosted by Humble Harve was born in the mid-70’s and lasted about nine years. “I did the whole thing,” HH told me. “I wrote it, engineered it, edited it, promoted it, sold it….It was on the Armed Forces Radio Network, and we had 380 stations at one time. I had it on all over the world.” The show lasted until the mid-80’s when a combination of too many copycat LP countdown shows and financial problems led Miller to retire the show.

Humble Harve’s life was hampered by an incident in 1971 that led to his serving prison time for manslaughter. Sources told me that Miller made a lengthy tape of himself to sound like he was on the air…and gave it to an engineer to play on the air for KHJ. Then Miller went home to catch his wife cheating on him. A gun was fired and the intended target was the cheating man…but Miller’s wife instead was hit and killed. From the time of that incident and his arrest, Miller’s station dropped from its playlist “Riders On The Storm” by the Doors. Why? Because the song had the lyric line, “There’s a killer on the loose.”

Humble Harve got his nickname when he was at WIBG/Philadelphia. He heard a Baltimore DJ who called himself Long Lean Larry Dean…so Miller started calling himself “Humble Heavy Harvey.”

Perhaps the best thing about Humble Harve Miller was his signoff slogan on that LP countdown show:

“No matter what you do, make sure you do one thing—and do one thing well—and that’s spread love every day.”

For more on this breaking story...







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Subject Author Date
I remember him very well, from KHJ & the murder. Interesting recap Rob (NT)Mr. XTuesday, June 04, 10:07:13pm
Very insightful and interesting. Thanks Rob. (NT)RussWednesday, June 05, 03:48:08am

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