Legendary DJ straight out of Macon, GA “King Bee” Hamp Swain passes away Tuesday night at 88 years old.
Hamp was the first African american disc jockey in the city of Macon, working at WBML-AM in the early 1950’s. Hamp and his show became a stable in the city, where musicians wanted their music played. Iconic musicians like “The Godfather of Soul” James Brown, “The King of Soul” Otis Redding, and many others were just a few that Swain helped to give them their BIG break.
This notable celebrity broadcast DJ also got his start as a musician with his band “The Hamptones,” playing in clubs up and down the southeast. One of the lead vocalist of the band was none of then Richard Penniman aka Little Richard.
Hamp’s was also known for launching the career of Otis Redding by playing his music at his weekly “Teenage Party” at the Roxy Theater. And just like James Brown, someone heard Otis and he became the legend we know now.
Swain died of natural causes at Navicent Health Medical Center.