Photo: Sidney Wood in 2014. CR: Rodney Ho/rho@ajc.com
Photo: Sidney Wood in 2014. CR: Rodney Ho/rho@ajc.com

Sidney Wood (AKA Kenny Diamond) of V-103, WAOK fame, has died

Originally posted Wednesday, February 12, 2020 by RODNEY HO/rho@ajc.com on his AJC Radio & TV Talk blog

Sidney Wood, a former V-103 and WAOK radio host, recently passed. 

He died of heart failure, his only son Sidney Wood III said. He was 54 year old.

A Charlotte native, Wood was known professionally in Atlanta for years in the 1980s as Kenny Diamond on WIGO and V-103, where he was afternoon host and musical director. 

“His style and delivery were second to none and he was phenomenal on the air,” said Kevin Ross on his Radio Facts web site. Ross worked with Wood at WIGO. 

Ryan Cameron, a former V-103 host now at Majic 107.5/97.5, was Wood’s intern in the early 1990s. “He was one of the most dynamic personalities Atlanta has ever seen. The master of vocabulary and a true wordsmith.”

Parquita Nassau, a former Kiss jock known on air as Marie Stevens, wrote a posthumous note to Wood on her Facebook page which included the following: “Thank you for countless days of counsel you gave me to stay sane in this business during my early on-air days. I literally just shared some advice you gave me to a co-worker in need this week. You were my Bestie in the Biz. Hell, we hung out so much, I am sure people thought we were dating. Truth be told, at times I bet we wondered it too. But no! We were just in awe of each other being smart, young and talented in the game.” 

OG 97.9 morning host Rick Party,early in his career in Macon at age 20, would listen to Diamond. “I learned listening Kenny that being an African-American talent with a crossover sound was unique and it taught me that I didn’t have to have the same dialect as my listening audience to be great. Being myself and relatable was good enough. I credit Kenny for that.” 

Wood lost his job at V-103 in 1991 at age 26 after conceding he'd accepted goods and services that influenced his musical decisions. 

R&B station Kiss 104.7 then hired him. 

From there, he worked for a Christian radio station, then transitioned to voice-over work for pastor Creflo Dollar

He also worked as a talk show host at 1080/WAOK-AM from 2013 to 2014.

“We had great time. He was a great dad,” said his son Sidney Wood III. “The conversations, the laughs we had, the debates we had, to groom me into the man I am. He forced me to read books a lot. His laugh was contagious.”

In an AJC interview in 1994 with Sonia Murray, he said he had political aspirations. “I have an ongoing joke on the air that in 2013,” he told her, “I'll be the mayor of the city of Atlanta. And it's not really a joke because I believe that if that's still a desire, that will occur.”

In 2001, he ran for City Council for an at-large post but came in third behind winner Mary Norwood

Sidney Wood’s mother Laverne Wood just passed in December at age 78. The family has organized a combined ceremony for both Woods on Feb. 22 at St. James Methodist Church in Alpharetta at 11 a.m.

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About the Author

Rodney Ho
Rodney Ho
Rodney Ho covers radio and television for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
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