7 bands DJ Rodney Bingenheimer played before they were famous

After more than 41 years on KROQ 106.7 FM, Rodney Bingenheimer’s “Rodney on the Roq” will play its final tracks from midnight — 3 a.m. Monday, June 5.

Airplay from the onetime club owner, dubbed the “Mayor of the Sunset Strip,” often means a big break for an artist. And his taste is so influential that multiple artists have thanked him in their Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction speeches.

Here’s a look at seven bands who have gained attention thanks to Bingenheimer and “Rodney on the Roq.”

The power pop band name-checked Bingenheimer during their Rock Hall induction in 2016.


“Rodney Bingenheimer, ‘Rodney on the Roq,’ Los Angeles, he was our first advocate in radio on the West Coast,” bassist Tom Petersson said in the speech.

Bingenheimer told Billboard in 1979 that he played Cheap Trick’s demos. Obviously, the band’s production values got stronger.


The rock ‘n’ roll band from Pasadena started to become a powerhouse in Los Angeles before taking over the world and that was thanks, in part, to Bingenheimer, who helped the band get gigs in Hollywood. He even played the demo of “Runnin’ With the Devil” on his show.


The Los Angeles-based rock group had a helping hand from Bingenheimer and he even ended up being written into the biopic about them. (Keir O’Donnell played him in the film.)

“He was instrumental in helping the Runaways,” singer Cherie Currie said in an interview with the Southern…

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