Shortly before his death, Sidney Wood had been caregiving for his mother who died Dec 18th, 2019 and he was trying to purchase a station in Americus, GA. The station deal fell through.

Saturday while taking a drive up the coast, I was talking to a longtime radio friend in Atlanta and out of the blue and completely off the subject, I asked her if she knew Sidney Wood or the name we knew him better by Kenny Diamond. She said the name sounded familiar and she looked him up and said: “Oh yeah I remember him.” We then continued the conversation about something else.

Sunday morning I woke up to a message from her stating that Sidney Wood (Kenny Diamond) died this past week. We were both dumbfounded that I brought up his name out of the blue and then this morning she heard from one of her radio contacts that he had died.

I started in radio with Kenny at WIGO in Atlanta in the mid-80s. We were all kids, hungry and starving ( LITERALLY just like everybody else who worked at WIGO) WIGO was truly a test of how bad you wanted to work in radio because it was by far in my 30-year history the first and the worst radio station I have ever worked for and quite often Alum from the station joke about how horrible it was working for the late Dorothy Brunson.

Kenny came to the station from Kiss 104, a super hot station in the market in the 80s that went head to head with V103. Kenny came to WIGO from Kiss and shortly thereafter I went to work for Kiss 104. “I had to fire Kenny because he kept getting chicken grease on the vinyl. He was great on the air but he kept eating in the booth.” Mitch Faulker told me as we laughed this weekend.

The late Byron Pitts hired the late Nate Quick and myself at WIGO and I'm not sure if he also hired Kenny but we all worked together and I remember being blown away by Kenny's amazing talent. Kenny not only had the voice he had the confidence and celebrity looks that could have catapulted him into superstardom.

I never wanted radio as much as many people that I know did but Kenny was absolutely MEANT to work in radio. His style and delivery were second to none and he was phenomenal on the air.

He became an even bigger radio star when he went to V103 doing afternoon drive and then he became the music director. At that time he was also working with another radio great from my hometown, the late Keith Pollard who was an AM superstar in the 70s and 80s but he was not a good fit for an FM transition. Like many other AM radio DJs, They didn't sound as good on FM.

Kenny got into an unfortunate legal situation at V that derailed the rest of his promising career. As if that wasn't enough he crossed the street into another investigation simultaneously that sealed his fate.

He disappeared for a while then did what he did best. He reinvented himself. He ran for office and then when that failed he went to work for Creflo Dollar. He was the voice of the church for many years and he also did some side jobs there.

In recent years Kenny was able to get on WAOK with something he had never done Talk radio and he did a great job with that even though he had no experience as a talk show host. He was always willing to give something a try. I never met anyone more ambitious than Kenny Diamond.

At last, he ended up doing sales for Cumulus when WAOK was over and that was his last industry gig to my knowledge. Ironically, he reached out to me within the last few months to do some writing for Radio Facts and to catch up. I never got the chance to respond.

Rest in Power Kenny. Your talent and ambition were undeniable and you were the greatest at whatever you chose to do. Say hello for the rest of the industry to Byron Pitts, Keith Pollard, Nate Quick, and yes even Dorothy Brunson.

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18 COMMENTS

  1. R.I.P. Kenny. he was definitely an Atl radio star back then. i remember taking After 7 to his show at V i think. it may have been Kiss 104. I actually just met them there, standing in for my boss at the time, India Graves.

  2. Had a few airchecks of him when I was first starting out of college dreaming of a full-time job in radio. His energy and slot on V103 made him the first “true” street-oriented night jock in Atlanta; doing a countdown, interacting with the kids and playing a couple top hip-hop hits at a time rap music wasn’t heard much on commercial radio. RIP.

  3. Wow cannot believe this news! Was just thinking about Sidney last week. He was a great guy! While at Cumulus Savannah Sidney also hosted a weekly community talk show on WTYB (Magic 103.9). I always admired his delivery. You could tell he was very seasoned. Sidney and I bonded when he shared with me that he was also the caretaker of a close family member with Dementia/ Alzheimers. Sid also gave me great advice when I was dealing with an problematic, and cantankerous PD. His advice saved me from stepping out of character while working in a hostile work environment. For that I’ll always be appreciative of my convos and remember Sidney Woods. RIP Decon Woods!

  4. The flame never died. Talked to Sid a number of times in the past year…tried to talk some sense into him :), but he was absolutely lit up and unstoppable about buying a little FM somewhere in central Georgia. Sure am going to miss that big smile and all that energy.
    And BTW, he was darn well-regarded in Savannah as an Account Exec, too.

  5. I was a care giver for his mom and from that I grew to know him and love him and his mother like they were family. I still cant believe this is true but sadly it is. I can go on and on and on about the many experiences we shared together during the time I spent caring and loving on his mother but its just too much to type. Sydney I for sure know you are in a happier place, we’ve prayed together, and you’ve even preached a number of times here at the facility your mom lived at.. You will surely be missed. Please give that beautiful mother of yours a big kiss and hug for me, Miss AKA (PINK & GREEN) didn’t play.. You have gone to join your mother and father to be a family once again.

  6. I cannot believe this! I had been talking with him often trying to minister to him. He was truly heartbroken over his mother’s passing, but seemed hopeful about a new business deal he told me about. He had been silent a few days…now I know why. I will miss my friend of over 25 years. Love you, Sid…Pastor Gloria Walker

  7. Hello everyone, I am SIDS, barber and I seen him go through some ruff patches but this takes the cake!
    He first told me about a youg woman he had fallen in Love with and that was doing him darned good, but all of a sudden he was back single. Then as he would come and get groomed he would mention his Mom’s sickness and how it was rapidly diminishing. And then he popped up, my Moms gone, I was like oh man?. He gathered himself and prepared to sell the home and bu.y
    the radio station , but I could see that he was not as successful as he thought he was going to be. Never mentioning his son, this here is how I’m left to remember such a charming charismatic, intelligent person. (RIP) Please if there is any good news left contact me @6788991986 Ragazzix