The Greaseman, a controversial personality

Doug Tracht (born August 1, 1950), known as the Greaseman, is an American radio DJ, famous for his morning parody radio shows, broadcasted in 1980s on WWDC-FM in Washington D.C.

The Greaseman pseudonym traces back to the college years, when one fellow deejay named him so, due to the “I’m cooking with heavy grease” phrase he used. A different character emerged, projecting the image of a middle-aged macho-voiced truck driver, drinking beer and smoking cigars. This alter ego he perfected proved to be very successful.

In 1975, he moved to WAPE-AM station in Jackson, Florida, and became the dominant radio personality of the entire Southeastern USA. His radio show consisted of comedy wits, funny stories and jokes, comical sound effects, songs with substituted lyrics, each show bringing to life one of his hilarious characters. No topic was untouchable; the show was edgy and sometimes offensive. After seven years of successful broadcasts, he moved to WWDC-FM in Washington (1982), replacing Howard Stern on the morning slot.

In 1985, an unfortunate joke about the Martin Luther King Day got him a five day suspension, but he managed to disperse the resentment by publicly apologizing and donating money to create a scholarship in the honor of Dr. King.

In 1999, after one year at WARW, an unfortunate comment he made related to James Byrd’s death generated a huge scandal. The incident proved disastrous to his radio career, Tracht being immediately fired. The comment stirred up a massive protest from listeners of all races and he was heavily chastised and called a racist. Despite his efforts to prove his good intentions, he remained persona non grata on the radio for the rest of 1999 and entire 2000.

In 2008, the general manager of Cox Radio in Jacksonville brought the Greaseman back to do an afternoon show, but in August, 2010, he stopped hosting the show with no explanation from the radio station whatsoever. The Greaseman posted a note on his website, announcing the end of the radio show and promising a swift comeback.