Doug Mulray has died at the age of 71.
He was described by his former radio station, Triple M, as the “godfather of radio”, and tributes have already begun flowing about his achievements and career.
Mulray worked in community radio, before joining Melbourne’s 3AW and then Sydney’s Double J.
In 1982, he moved over to commercial FM radio to help launch Triple M.
Fellow former Triple M broadcaster Andrew Denton spoke this morning and credited Mulray with being part of the birth of FM radio in Australia.
“Within a decade, he had taken Triple M to the top of radio, top of all radio in Sydney. And the reason was, he was crazy. He had a genius for radio… Doug was absolutely suited to radio and he could do it all. He could do brilliant impersonations. He was so fast. He could perform. He could sing. And he was prepared to try anything,” Denton said.
On television, Mulray fronted “Beauty and the Beast” in 2002.
Perhaps most famously though, he hosted the 1992 show “Australia’s Naughtiest Home Videos”, which was pulled off the air mid broadcast by the Nine Network’s then-owner Kerry Packer. The dead air time was then filled by a re-run of “Cheers”.
He was then fired and banned from the Nine Network, but joked on his radio show the next day: “I am the first man in Australian history to be pulled off by Kerry Packer.”
Grant Blackley, CEO of Southern Cross Austereo (SCA) – the current owner of Triple M – paid tribute to Mulray’s radio chops.
“Our deepest sympathies to the family and friends on the passing of Uncle Doug. He was radio royalty and an absolute legend. He was instrumental in changing the face of radio on Triple M and became a household name. He was deeply opinionated, highly intelligent and one very cheeky bugger,” he said.
“Thank you, Dougie, for entertaining us and ensuring we never took life too seriously. We will miss you. Vale Doug Mulray.”