‘The Geator With The Heater’, A Philadelphia Radio Advocate For Early R&B Artists, Was 82

Jerry Blavat, a fast-talking DJ in Philadelphia who was a staunch backer of R&B in an period the place “race information” weren’t mainstream, died Friday at Jefferson-Methodist Hospital in Philadelphia. His loss of life was confirmed by his shut buddy A.J. Mattia and Keely Stahl, the latter his companion of greater than 30 years.

The reason for loss of life was from problems attributable to myasthenia gravis, an autoimmune neuromuscular illness. He was 82 and labored up till lately, when he canceled a number of long-running dwell occasions. Nevertheless, he was nonetheless heard usually on his personal Geator Gold Radio community, and on his weekly Saturday evening present on WXPN-FM (88.5), The Geator’s Rock ‘n’ Roll Rhythm & Blues Categorical.

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A household assertion issued on Friday stated: “Jerry proudly stated, ‘Life is treasured, and I’m glad. And when I’m glad, I need the world to be glad.’ … His love for Philadelphia solely outdated his love of music. He was pleased with this nice metropolis, and nothing made him prouder than the impression the music from Philadelphia made on the world.”

Blavat made his impression in an period the place company radio was not but in control of the airwaves. Dubbing himself “The Geator with the Heater” and “The Boss with the Scorching Sauce,” he constructed a regional empire as a radio DJ, dance promoter, tv host, file firm proprietor, and all-around entrepreneur. He as soon as managed Danny and the Juniors (hit: “At The Hop”) and launched the Soul Survivors’ hit, “Expressway to Your Coronary heart” on his Crimson label.

Blavat’s memoir, You Solely Rock As soon as, was printed in 2011. Motown founder Berry Gordy praised the work: “For all of the artists, and all of the others within the music enterprise, you could have been so vital to all of us via the years.”

Gordy’s reward was earned. Blavat labored tirelessly selling the genuine variations of hits that have been usually whitewashed by cowl variations from white artists.

Todd Rundgren, talking on the 2019 induction of the band The Hooters into the Philadelphia Music Alliance Stroll of Fame (Blavat was himself an inductee in 1993) put it finest:

“I inform folks all over the place I am going that I’m the product of the Philadelphia music scene. Folks ask me, what does that imply? I inform them it comes down to 1 factor: I grew up listening to the Geator. He performed the music that will have been known as race information on the time, the music that was made south of the Mason-Dixon Line. And that’s why so many white children in Philly grew up eager to sing R&B.”

No memorial plans have been introduced.

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