Who is Reinaldo Cordeiro, the world’s longest-serving DJ, who died on Friday?

Who is Reinaldo Cordeiro, the world’s longest-serving DJ, who died on Friday?

Reinaldo Maria Cordeiro, known as “Uncle Ray”, died on Friday January 13, a year after he was hospitalized after suffering cardiac arrest. His career, which shaped an entire generation, was considered the longest in the world.

A tragedy for the cultural world in China. Reinaldo Maria Cordeiro died on Friday at the age of 98 surrounded by his immediate family. A final tribute was paid to him, accompanied by the Gerry and the Pacemakers title, “You’ll Never Walk Alone,” according to a committee organizing the funeral.

Having made his name with broadcasts for public broadcaster RTHK in the 1960s, he retired in 2021. “I had the best in life and I had everything I wanted to be, everything I wanted to do,” he confessed in his autobiography. With a career spanning more than seven decades, he was already hailed by Guinness World Records in 2000 as the longest career DJ in the world.

A music industry icon

“I refuse to imagine a world without music,” Uncle Ray still confided in his book. First a prison guard, then a bank clerk, his love of music led him to pursue his passion in 1949. As a radio host in Hong Kong, he advanced the careers of many local artists by broadcasting them on the airwaves and loved discovering new talent and musical movements.

Along the way, Reinaldo Maria Cordeiro also interviewed many celebrities such as the Beatles, Frank Sinatra, the Bee Gees and Ella Fitzgerald. He is “a prominent figure in Hong Kong’s popular culture” who has made “considerable contributions to the music scene” in Hong Kong, said Kevin Yeung, the city’s culture minister, on Saturday.

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