Lloyd Moss, WQXR Host for More Than 50 Years, Dies at 86

Monday, August 05, 2013 - 12:00 PM

Lloyd Moss, a WQXR host of five decades who brought an irreverence and genial wit to the once staid universe of classical radio, died on Saturday at his home in Croton-on-Hudson, NY. He was 86 and had Parkinson’s disease, said his wife, Anne Moss.

Moss came to WQXR in 1954 and by his retirement on Sept. 29, 2006, was one of the longest-serving classical music hosts in the United States. Like many radio personalities of the era, he worked as a voiceover artist and actor, with various credits in television and radio during the 1970s and '80s. Moss was also known for his eclectic outside pursuits: as a children's author, editorial cartoonist, classically-trained trombonist and even a one-time model.

"He was one of the first irreverent announcers. No one did that in the '50s on WQXR," said Anne Moss, referring to the somber, serious reportorial manner of the day. "Lloyd was a segue to a more relaxed and conversational style.”

WQXR host Jeff Spurgeon said Moss's subtle deadpan style could made you sit up and listen. "My favorite example is something he tossed off one day after a cheese commercial,” said Spurgeon. “The spot ended, and Lloyd opened the mic and said, 'What a friend we have in cheeses.' And then he simply gave the weather forecast and introduced whatever piece of music came next, never even winking an eye to the audience."

Moss's interest in music began as a child in Brooklyn, where his father owned a beauty shop that played WQXR on the radio. He attended the Metropolitan Vocational High School in Manhattan (later the High School of Performing Arts) and played trombone in a dance band, for which he arranged the swing tunes of the era. He entered New York University as a music and art major but his studies were interrupted at the age of 18 when he was drafted into the Army and then assigned to an infantry division in Seoul, South Korea. This, however, served to launch him into his career in radio.

While in Seoul, Moss played trombone and sang in a show band to entertain his fellow soldiers. Once, a colleague heard him speak into a microphone and said that his voice needed to be on the radio. Moss took the advice, transferred to the radio unit and began work for Armed Forces Radio, where he did imitations and other comic routines. “From the very beginning it was a love affair between me and the microphone," he told Spurgeon in an interview in 2006.

After his return to the U.S. in 1946, Moss worked as a radio announcer for stations in Pennsylvania, Connecticut and Long Island, as well as WNYC, before joining Voice of America. Because Moss had learned Japanese during his stint in Korea, he was able to get a job as a producer for the Japanese desk. That came to an end when the network moved to Washington, DC. Moss auditioned for WQXR, was hired a relief announcer in 1954, and joined the staff in June 1955.

WQXR Archive Collections

Moss remained an afternoon host at WQXR until 1971, when he left to pursue acting and voiceover work. “I eventually was so busy with the outside work that I couldn’t juggle both,” he said. But he continued as a freelance host, starting with "First Hearing," an hour-long weekly program featuring a changing panel of experts who give their opinions of new, unidentified recordings. At its peak the show was syndicated to 80 "good music" stations, making it the most widely heard classical music program. The Washington Post once described it as having “the stimulation of a slightly contentious scholarly forum.”

Moss also hosted “This is My Music,” a popular show in which celebrities, artists, academics and politicians talked about their favorite music (1979-1987). A partial list of the notable guests includes Gore Vidal, Benny Goodman, E. L. Doctorow, John Simon, Bella Abzug, Malcolm Forbes, Eartha Kitt, Andrew Lloyd Webber, Marvin Hamlisch, Tony Bennett, Gloria Vanderbilt, Charles Aznavour, Alan Dershowitz, Maurice Sendak, Marcel Marceau and Barbara Cook.

During the nearly two decades when Moss was not a full-time announcer, he narrated ads for products like Listerine. His screen credits included a role as a book publisher in the soap opera "As the World Turns," and as an Israeli diplomat in the 1982 movie “The Soldier.” He also was an off-camera voice in “The Color of Money” and he narrated PBS "Live from Lincoln Center" salutes to John Huston and Billy Wilder.

Listen to a 1980s-era Demo Tape featuring Moss's voiceover work:

After a surgery in 1989, Moss returned to WQXR as a full-time announcer and held the 3 to 6 pm slot until his retirement in 2006. In the 1990s, Moss began working as a children’s author, starting with Zin! Zin! Zin! A Violin, an introduction to the instruments of a chamber orchestra (1995, Simon & Shuster), and followed by Our Marching Band and Music Is. Moss also wrote a weekly editorial cartoon for the Croton-Cortland News, in his Croton-on-Hudson home, which grew out of satirical sketches with which he entertained his WQXR co-workers.

Lloyd Moss reads from his children's book in 2000 (WQXR Archive Collections)

“I never had the privilege of meeting Lloyd in person, but most certainly loved listening to him on WQXR when I moved to New York in 1995,” said Graham Parker, the Vice President and General Manager of WQXR. “His was a voice of a golden generation and his perspective on music and New York so utterly captivating.”

Parker remembers reading to his own children Moss’s Zin! Zin! Zin! A Violin, a book that has been translated into several languages and is now in its 15th printing. “One of the greatest and most joyful books to introduce the youngest of new audiences to music and instruments, ”Zin” is a masterpiece in poetry, illustration and integrity," said Parker. "I wish he had written more!”

Others, including WQXR co-founder Elliott Sanger, have remarked on Moss’s acerbic wit over the years. In Rebel in radio: The Story of WQXR, Sanger described Moss as someone who "had he gone on the stage, would have been a matinee idol and, who is undoubtedly our announcer who can do so many different kinds of programs with equal skill and who our listeners either adore or hate."

In an e-mail Monday, WQXR host Elliott Forrest noted: "I have had many role models and mentors in my blessed life. I will always consider Lloyd Moss at the top of the list.”

Moss is survived by his wife of 55 years, Anne Moss, and four children, who live in the New York City area and in Hawaii.

Please share your own memories of Lloyd Moss in the comments box below. A special thanks to the NYPR Archives for their assistance.


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Comments [95]

Allan Marshall from Manassas, VA

Much of my formative years in Brooklyn were spent listening to Lloyd Moss every weekday afternoon. Years later when I would drive to New York from my home in Northern Virginia I would tune my car radio to WQXR in Southern New Jersey and when the transmission finally came through the familiar voice of Lloyd Moss with his customary "odds and ends of incidental information" reassured me that I could come home again. That man will be missed.

Nov. 11 2013 01:57 PM
Paul Sloan from Sarasota Florida

I grew up listening to "Mr. Moss" in person as he was my neighbor and his children were my childhood friends. He was always welcoming and quite tolerating of the terror we could create....... and had a voice you could never forget or disobey. My sincerest condolences to Ann and my childhood co-conspirators.

Nov. 02 2013 08:16 PM
Dan Harrison from Briarcliff NY

There is little to say that hasn't already been said about the great Lloyd Moss. I will simply note that in an obiotuary for the newsletter of a music group in northern Westchester, where he lived, I referred to his "incomparable voice leavened with knowledge, urbanity and wit."

Sep. 05 2013 06:35 PM
Joseph R. Latore

I was a WQXR fan for many years and loved to hear Lloyd's wonderful voice and dry wit. He was truly a delight. I extend my sympathy to his family and hope they will take comfort in the knowledge that he brought joy to so many.

Aug. 25 2013 06:31 PM
Jim John

Lloyd on a Rossini opera: "Remember, a Semiramide is better than none!" What a friend we had in Lloyd.

Aug. 23 2013 09:41 AM
Al Raymond from Croton-on-Hudson, NY

One time Lloyd mentioned that he was a bike rider, and I was inspired to drop a note saying we had something in common, in addition to loving classical music. He wrote back---handwritten, as always---that we had one more thing in common---we were both Crotonians! (Unfortunately, we never met in person despite all our commonalities!)
He amazed me even more when he said one morning that he'd biked to work---all the way from Croton to (I assume) the Flatiron Building in downtown Manhattan. (For all I know, he biked to work more than just that once!)
The distance alone attests to his stamina---but doing it in NYC rush-hour traffic adds a huge dose of just plain PHYSICAL COURAGE!!!
Where you're riding now, Lloyd, you can keep on going and never again have to stop and change a flat!!!

Aug. 15 2013 12:25 PM
Jenifer from Washington, DC

Lloyd Moss was not only a great announcer with amusing, interesting introductions and a rich voice, but he was a kind and gentle man. He and his wife Anne frequently invited our children over to watch Laurel and Hardy movies and laughed as much as they did. He drew pictures of them and had a charming way of dealing with people of all ages.
Zin Zin, Lloyd.

Aug. 14 2013 07:28 PM
Joshua Daniel from Efrat, Israel

Many people asked me what I most missed when we moved to Israel in 1980.
My answer was the same to all.
The Autumn foliage and WQXR and more specifically,Lloyd Moss.
When 25 years later I was told that I could reach wqxr via the internet I was thrilled but just knew that it wouldnt be like old times with Lloyd Moss. Though I am fond of all your wonderful announcers.Excitedly I connected with the station and said to myself,really sounds like Lloyd,but how can that be ?Maybe the station filters make them all sound the same!When the announcer said this is Lloyd Moss I felt faint.How can it be after 47 years,
[i started to listen to WQXR at age 9yrs]. AND STILL GOING STRONG!
Amazing!Even though he was retired,our knowing that he left this world will make us miss him even more.My sincerest condolenses to his wife and family who must be very special to have had this unforgettable marvelous
giant of a person as its head.
Sincerely,Josh Daniel

Aug. 14 2013 04:11 AM
Jeff W from Bethesda, MD

Growing up in wilds of subjersia, I had two favorite radio personalities: Jean Shepherd and Lloyd Moss. Very different, and yet very similar personalities. Shep had been gone for a while, and now Lloyd Moss, our loss.

Aug. 13 2013 03:59 PM
Juan Feliciano from Westchester, NY

Lloyd was witty, charming, and interesting to talk to. He inspired me to become an artist and reinvent myself. I always showed him and his wife my artwork before revealing it to the public. I'm so glad I was able to spend time with such a talented, wonderful person.

Aug. 12 2013 10:47 PM
Ginger from Brooklyn

I started listening to classical music rather late in life and I adored Lloyd Moss. His sense of humor and his puns were so special. When he retired I was heartbroken, really heartbroken. I just wished I had written him a note to say how much enjoyed listening to him.

Aug. 12 2013 03:40 PM
Jock Stender from Charleston, SC

I began listening avidly to Lloyd Moss' "First Hearing" in the mid-70s, when it was broadcast by South Carolina's public radio station WSCI, from the "Pri-Fly" (primary flight control tower) of the retired aircraft carrier Yorktown, that overlooks Charleston harbor.

Never having studied music, it taught me about musical forms, conducting, orchestration, tempo, pizzicato, resonance, miking and other recording techniques, and ... temperament. As in the temperament of Herbert von Karajan/DG versus George Solti/CSO with the Beethoven symphonies.

And for the three commentators to recognize instantly, say, the clarinettist (and conductor, and orchestra) on hearing the clarinet glissando that opens "Rhapsody in Blue" was, for me, amazing. My favorite commentator was Martin Bookspan.

Lloyd Moss was a gentleman and his program was a great teaching platform for listeners nationwide. God bless him.

-- Jock Stender, Charleston, SC

Aug. 11 2013 04:27 PM
Klassic Kal from New York City

I broke down and cried when I heard of Lloyd Moss's passing.
He had been a maitre d' of the masterworks of music for so many years that I had taken him for granted. It was only after he had finally retired that I realized what he had done for me and for so many WQXR listeners.
As an informed yet informal guide to classical music, he, and his fellow stars in the constellation of culture known as WQXR, had opened the sense of beauty for us.

Aug. 11 2013 12:04 PM
Jane Thornton

Of all the WQXR announcers whom I've welcomed into my home over the air waves year after year, Lloyd Moss was my hands-down favorite. His wit, delightful sense of humor and the joy he took in wordplay brightened every day. I often, in pre-computer days, wrote him a note to tell him so, and he always responded. When he was in hospital back in the 80s (I think), I sent him a silly limerick wishing him a speedy recovery, and he replied on a postcard:
Although lying around is a pain,
And I fret and I grouse and complain,
My discomfort is less,
And I've lost my distress
On receipt of that poem by Jane.
(Back soon!)

In response to another snippet of verse I sent several years later, he wrote:
Thank you, dear Jane, for your rhyme.
I found the sentiment sublime.
It gives me great joy beyond compare
To know that, when I'm on, you're there.

Although I mourn his death, I have happy memories of the most interesting and charming man I never met!

Aug. 11 2013 08:38 AM
linda samet from nyc

I always listened to WQXR and Lloyd Moss. Great music.

Aug. 10 2013 10:20 PM
Len Rubin from Boston, Mass.

I am sorry to read of the death of Lloyd Moss, who brightened the lives of so many people in the Metropolitan area with good music, a wonderful sense of humor, and a lovely speaking voice. Someone should do a Radio Special on "The Golden Age of WQXR," with Lloyd, Duncan Pirnie, Pru Devon (she played Wonderful South American Music), Carl Haas and even Bob Sherman, among others. They informed our world: depression children who were transported by classical music. Lloyd was one of the many voices who defined civility for us and left delightful marks on our lives.

Aug. 10 2013 03:22 PM
Gerald Love

I last saw LLoyd Moss late April 1945 at Camp Wheeler Georgia before I left for Chicago to study Japanese at the U of C. He was on sick leave at the time and my memory of him is still good. He wished me well as was customary of him during our stint in basic training.
I listened to Lloyd's WQXR afternoon programs for many years which served as a sort of vicarious reunion in addition to their enjoyability.
My condolences to the family.

Aug. 10 2013 01:00 PM
Jeffrey Thompsen from Colonia, NJ

My condolences to the family and freinds of Lloyd Moss,and if you were a regular listener you most certainly felt like he was your friend! I too saved his personal e-mail response when he retired. It was clear he didn't just skim over them and send out a generic response, he actually referenced your comments! I was thrilled and humbled! I loved the Mother's Day greetings too (Kurts mazur!), His honest critiques (Sting's performance in Three Penny Opera!),and I knew my workday was done and I was headed home when Mr. Moss came back after the news at "the palindromic 5:05". He will surely be missed.

Aug. 10 2013 12:15 PM
aalevy from Mt. Vernon, NY

We lost a great voice, especially on QXR..There will be no other voice like LLoyd Moss around. He made my listening to classical music a wonderful gift. May Lloyd Moss rest in peace and continue to give musical pleasure to the Angels in Heaven.

Aug. 10 2013 12:09 PM
Dick Burch

Lloyd Moss was the voiceover narrator of a number of educational filmstrip/video productions I produced at Newsweek Magazine in the 1970s. His timing and wit were a major factor during the recording sessions. I specifically recall his frustrated interruption in one: "Who wrote this script!?" As the author and producer I quickly made changes to accommodate his revisions. And the program in question, "2000 A.D." turned out to be an award-winning bestseller!

Aug. 10 2013 11:19 AM

A great man and a wonderful wit is gone. His like we will not see again. He was part of what made WQXR so great for so many years

Aug. 10 2013 10:58 AM
Norman Silverstein

As a kid growing up in New York, and an avid WQXR listener, Lloyd greatly enhanced my love of classical music. Upon his retirement in 2006, I wrote and told him how much I will him and wished him the best. He e-mailed me back and thanked me for "sharing the airwaves with him for the past 50 years". Needless to say, his voice will be with me forever. My condolences to his family. Rest in peace my friend.

Aug. 10 2013 10:44 AM
Theresa De Santis

Lloyd Moss was witty and kind. Whenever he played music by Locatelli,he always called him "the big cheese".
I sent him a get well note one time which was addressed to LLoyd Moss at WQXR.Well, to my great surprise he sent me a hand written personal thank you note. Truly a wonderful person.May the heavenly angels keep the music going.

Aug. 09 2013 09:05 PM
Theresa De Santis

Lloyd Moss was witty and kind. Whenever he played music by Locatelli,he always called him "the big cheese".
I sent him a get well note one time which was addressed to LLoyd Moss at WQXR.Well, to my great surprise he sent me a hand written personal thank you note. Truly a wonderful person.May the heavenly angels keep the music going.

Aug. 09 2013 09:05 PM
Theresa De Santis

Lloyd Moss was witty and kind. Whenever he played music by Locatelli,he always called him "the big cheese".
I sent him a get well note one time which was addressed to LLoyd Moss at WQXR.Well, to my great surprise he sent me a hand written personal thank you note. Truly a wonderful person.May the heavenly angels keep the music going.

Aug. 09 2013 09:05 PM
Theresa De Santis

Lloyd Moss was witty and kind. Whenever he played music by Locatelli,he always called him "the big cheese".
I sent him a get well note one time which was addressed to LLoyd Moss at WQXR.Well, to my great surprise he sent me a hand written personal thank you note. Truly a wonderful person.May the heavenly angels keep the music going.

Aug. 09 2013 09:05 PM
Theresa De Santis

Lloyd Moss was witty and kind. Whenever he played music by Locatelli,he always called him "the big cheese".
I sent him a get well note one time which was addressed to LLoyd Moss at WQXR.Well, to my great surprise he sent me a hand written personal thank you note. Truly a wonderful person.May the heavenly angels keep the music going.

Aug. 09 2013 09:05 PM
Marcia from Ocean, NJ

Reading the warm and witty comments brought back the sound of Lloyd Moss, and to supplement Mark Mollek from Montclair, one Mothers' Day Sunday Lloyd brought us greetings from "Riccardo's Muti, Yo-Yo's Ma and Ima Sumac." I memorized it and repeat it every year for that occasion. RIP, Lloyd.

Aug. 09 2013 06:16 PM
George Dummitt from Manhattan, NYC

I am the House Carpenter at the Belasco Theatre, and one afternoon while listening to WQXR I heard Lloyd Moss say that he was coming to the theatre the next evening. I called the station and asked to be put through to the announce booth, and when Mr. Moss came to the phone I invited him to visit backstage before the performance. The next evening, sure enough, the Stage Doorman called me to the Stage Door and Lloyd Moss introduced himself. We had a very nice visit, and I found him to be as charming in person as he was on air. Having met him in person made it all the more fun to hear him on the air.
I think that my favorite remembrance of Mr. Moss on air was during a visit to New York by the then Pope. In discussing all the to do surrounding the Pope's visit, Mr. Moss suggested that all of us who could, should utilize "mass transit"!

Aug. 09 2013 05:14 PM
Roger from Brewster,NY

I was saddened by the loss of Lloyd. I can sincerely say I had listened to him on WQXR since I was born! My Mom was a Violinist and had WQXR on the radio in 1955 while I was an infant and while taking naps. I also remenmber listening to Duncan Pirnie as well. As I grew up, I of course turned to Rock and Roll, but in my 40's I began listening to WQXR again and there was Lloyd Moss; the "voice" I heard as a child. He could be likened to "The Cousin Brucie" of Classical Music. They don't "make" announcers very often like that of Lloyd.

Aug. 08 2013 08:26 PM
richard spokowski from Brooklyn

The only tv/radio personality I ever Emailed
That says a lot
Great loss!

Aug. 08 2013 02:59 PM
Tricia Reynolds from Croton-on-Hudson, now Naples, Italy

Lloyd Moss was a gentleman with a velvet voice. His lovely and ever-beautiful wife Anne must have gone through hell during his Parkinson's time. Big hugs to you, Anne. I baby-sat for their kids occasionally during the early 60's, would see them around town, and would always crack a special smile when his familiar voice came on the ever-present WQXR at my Mom's house, one of the things I missed after moving away. A distant memory? His New Year's Eve Countdown of Personal Favorite Pieces -- I cheered when Samuel Barber made it to the top!

Aug. 08 2013 12:56 PM
Adrienne from Basking Ridge

It was so sad hearing that Lloyd Moss had passed. Like so many of the commentators here, I too grew up listening to him on the radio every day and laughing out loud to his quirky sense of humor. As my children were growing up we loved reading his books in fact, I have bought Zin! Zin! Zin! A Violin for many children. It was a sad day when he left the station and a sadder one as he leaves the world. He touched the hearts of many but none more than his family; my condolences to all of you.

Aug. 08 2013 12:43 PM
STEVEN B. SANDERS from Shelter Island NY

Like so many, I felt Lloyd Moss was a fixture in my life for many years.
Shortly after his retirement in 2006 I wrote to him imploring him(in a humorous way I thought he would enjoy)to come back.

His response was as humorous, warm and wise as if he had actually known me for many years. I share this exchange as a fond recollection of a fine man.

ok. we have made it without you for more than a
> month now.
> now cut it out. this world is bad enough without
> losing your voice and presence on a regular basis.
> to quote the patron saint of sailors " that's all I
> can stand cause I cant stands no more!"

His responses:
Oh Steven:
That's just a lot of spinach.

There's no turning back the clock.
But I feel your pain.

Aug. 08 2013 11:03 AM
Peggy from New York, NY

I listened to Lloyd Moss everyday at work, for many years, and missed his voice every day since he retired!

Aug. 08 2013 10:44 AM
Peter O'Malley from Oakland, New Jersey

I must admit that sometimes his puns got to be a bit much, but Lloyd Moss was the last of what you could call the "middle school" announcers on WQXR: those who knew the music and could talk about it without a script. Luckily he didnn't fall by the wayside like George Edwards and Duncan Pirnie when the old WQXR got rid of its older announcers. When Lloyd left in 2006, it was said that he was retiring from his regular announcer's spot but would still be appearing for special programming. If he did, I must have missed them all, as I don't recall hearing him again. As many thers have said on this forum, he will be missed.

Aug. 08 2013 10:40 AM
john from south africa

I came upon this site purely by chance.What a humbling experience!to have lived such a long life and to be so admired and loved;not a single negative comment!

Aug. 08 2013 10:34 AM
Paul Christman from Brooklyn, NY

Lloyd Moss and WQXR were family favorites of ours. My father played only WQXR at home, and Lloyd Moss's humor and warmth enchanted my mother. And I always missed WQXR when I went to college in Missoula, Montana well before the Internet brought the station to the world. My mother once wrote to Lloyd in appreciation of his special style, and she got a very nice letter of thanks in return. Just before my father died, I won a WQXR contest and talked with Lloyd on the phone very briefly. My father died soon after that, and on the night he died I had the radio tuned to WQXR as a tribute to my dad. I felt I could e mail that fact to Lloyd with my own appreciation of him, and he responded to say he was very touched, especially with the story about my dad. I'll miss Lloyd, someone I feel I could call "Lloyd" without ever meeting him and someone who added a special touch to a station I could never live without.

Aug. 08 2013 09:05 AM
Keith from Plymouth, Wisconsin

May you rest in peace, Lloyd. His voice made my afternoon commute more than just tolerable. Witty and articulate, he was a prince among men. Upon his retirement, I sent him an e-mail of congratulations. To my surprise, he replied with a personal note. I will always cherish it.

Aug. 08 2013 08:55 AM
Paul from Bronx/New Rochelle

I remember when Celine Dion and James Ingram's Beauty and the Beast came out, Lloyd Moss enjoyed playing it and I loved listening to it while at work.

Aug. 08 2013 08:40 AM
Norma Arnold from NYC

I was a huge fan of Lloyd Moss. His late afternoon slot on WQXR coincided with many a long commute from Westchester to N.Y.C. No matter what was going on in the world, Lloyd's cultured voice and presentation was always a pleasure to listen to.

Aug. 07 2013 11:20 PM
Vincent Mohan from Bergenfield, NJ

Lloyd Moss made my afternoon drive home a pleasure. Even my metal head son appreciated him as "the guy with the dry sense of humor". He will be missed in this world, but is probably entertaining all in the next.

Aug. 07 2013 08:44 PM
Michael Goukdet from Seaford, NY

Lloyd Moss came to the elementary school where I taught to read "Zin, Zin, Zin, A Violin", his then newly published children's book. Our school band and orchestra put together all the instruments he needed to illustrate his reading except for the harp. As I play harp, I was delighted to play for a man that I had listened to on WQXR since I was a child myself. He was a kind, cheerful, and loved being with children. They loved being with him. You can fool adults, but children ALWAYS know a good person when they meet him.

Aug. 07 2013 05:43 PM
Lorraine Rolston from New York, NY

Mr. Moss was an integral part of my day for many years. His voice was part of the many voices (parents, siblings, friends) that defined the pattern of my growth and maturity. He will be missed.

Aug. 07 2013 04:50 PM
charles from Pleasant Valley, N.Y.

I am saddened of the news of Lloyds passing.as a child during summer vacation I would listen to Lloyd Moss with my mother on the porch of our house in Hyde Park.Even as an adolescent I was entertained by his irreverent style.To this day I listen to QXR and have introduced my 7 year old and 4 year old daughters to the world of classical music through WQXR. Godspeed Mr. Moss

Aug. 07 2013 02:57 PM
Stephen Marchetta from Naples, FL

I listened to Lloyd Moss in my office every afternoon upon my return to New York in 1994. His voice and wit signaled for me the approach of the end of the work day, and evoked a special feeling particularly in the winter as the sun set and the city lights turned on, all of which I viewed from my window overlooking midtown. At those moments I especially enjoyed his playing Gustav Holtz's Jupiter, from The Planets, a piece which always reminds me of New York.

Aug. 07 2013 02:34 PM
Carol from Westchester from Westchester

When I heard the sad news that Llyod Moss had died I recalled a delightful, brief meeting with him in a book store in Croton-on-Hudson. Before I even saw his face, however, I heard 'that voice' and knew I was about to meet the wonderful WQXR announcer, Llyod Moss! The very next day on his radio program, after I mentioned to him how I loved Mozart's concerto for three keyboards, he played the piece.

I would like to my deepest sympathies to his family.

Aug. 07 2013 01:44 PM
Barry Owen Furrer

Upon hearing the sad news of Mr. Moss's passing, I recalled fond and funny memories of his broadcasts during my college and work commutes as a "captive audience" member. Passers by must have thought me "nuts" laughing out loud during Mr. Moss's puns or quips, a trait I carry to the classroom to further engage my music students. While at the time I wished I had written down these witticisms I do recall a performance of the famous Clarke Trumpet Tune and Mr. Moss went on (I paraphrase): "and when asked if the soloist was forced to play it, no, he played the trumpet voluntarily." My condolences to the Moss family and countless friends.

Aug. 07 2013 11:41 AM
Stephen M. Sans from Westhampton Beach

After hearing Lloyd on the radio for many years, I was fortunate to have him as my voice-over coach. I remember our first meeting in his apartment off Bryant Park. I read copy for a movie, " the night of the shooting stars"; and then Lloyd read the copy. As I stood there in awe, he finished, turned to me, and in his dry wit simply said, " And that's why they call me " One take Lloyd".
Btw, Besides all the passions of Lloyd mentioned above, he was also an avid cyclist if I remember correctly. He would even donate cycle tours of croton-on-the-Hudson for the annual New York Philharmonic radiothons. Rest in peace Lloyd and my condolences to the family.

Aug. 06 2013 10:47 PM
Lilly Knuth from Garden City S

I remember listening to L. moss when I was a teenager. He was my companion when I did my homework. So many memories of wonderful programs. He will be missed.

Aug. 06 2013 06:12 PM
JohnI Goodwin from Demarest, NJ

I too was saddened when Mr. Moss retired and sadder still to hear that he has died. I read his wonderful book, Zin Zin Zin a violin over and over to my children. Each year I attend the Clearwater Folk Festival at Croton On Hudson
and, although I nver made any effort to visit him, I always had a good feeling about being in his town.
How sad that so soon after the WQXR signal strength was improved through WQXW that Mr. Moss has died and not lived to enjoy the improved reception.

Aug. 06 2013 05:17 PM
Phyllis Sharpe from Teaneck, NJ

Driving home from work at 4:30 pm I heard Lloyd Moss on my car radio. I loved hearing him say "That was Handel, by george!"
But as we regret his death, we also celebrate his life and his contribution to our lives.
Phyllis Sharpe

Aug. 06 2013 05:07 PM

As a rock and roller who came slowly around to classical and then determined that the best way thru my professional work-day was thru WQXR, Lloyd Moss became a voice, then a person, who I admired for the wit and charm he brought to his work and the music he brought to my ears. Thank you to QXR for bringing Lloyd into my life and making that difference. May his memory be for a blessing.

Aug. 06 2013 04:55 PM
Louise Weiss from New York

I had a brief postcard correspondence with Lloyd Moss in which I mentioned that he was just as good as Bob Trout. He was delighted! A charming man with a beautiful voice and a wicked sense of humor. By the way, I was pleased to see mention of Duncan Pirnie. Anyone remember Pru Devon? She played horrible music but had a lovely voice.

Aug. 06 2013 04:22 PM
Lee Walter from Fort Lauderdale, FL

Lloyd Moss will be terribly missed. I remember listening years ago on WQXR when Mr. Moss announced a piece of music (I don't recall the exact piece) and noted that the music was used in Cirque de Soleil were the music (in his words) is intense. What wit he brought to classical music.

Aug. 06 2013 02:32 PM
Barbara from Westchester County

When I was growing up WQXR was on from morning till night, and I knew and loved all of the wonderful voices. Bright & Early with George Edwards (another one of a kind gentlemen) Duncan Pirnie, and later on Our wonderful June LeBelle (whose cookbook I treasure) and Robert Sherman for Woody's Children, etc. But it was always such a pleasure to hear Lloyd Moss in the afternoon or early evening and any and all occasional commercial announcements. They are all missed, and I am so pleased to read what the current on air announcers have to say about the gentleman who took them under his wing to make them better at what they do because he was the best at what he did. My favorite play on words was the time that he told of reading an item about "DERBIS" which was a mispronunciation of the word debris. Hew was missed wehn he retired, and now knowing that there are no more chances to hear that wonderful voice (with the exception of some rare old recordings, He has joined the Heavenly Choir as both singer and announcer. Sincere condolences to his family from one more admirer.

Aug. 06 2013 01:24 PM
Regina Avner from Flushing, NY

I'll never forget Lloyd Moss coming to speak to us at his high school alma mater, the High School of Performing Arts. He was so personable and what a perfect announcer voice. I always enjoyed his programs on WQXR and with that voice that I will never forget! He was certainly one of the greats. I will miss him!

Aug. 06 2013 01:19 PM
Norman A Ross from New York, NY

Listening to Lloyd Moss's Cocktail Hour every day led me to drink! How could one not join in the celebration.
Standing behind a well-dressed gentleman waiting to buy tickets at a box office in a Broadway theater, I heard his voice and, OMG, it was Lloyd Moss. What a treat!
I've been listening to QXR for about 70 years. He was one of the gems.

Aug. 06 2013 12:05 PM
Mark Yolleck from Montclair, NJ

I loved Lloyd Moss. I'm a musician and and an inveterate punster, hence the empathy and pleasure I felt with and in him and his work. More important, he did what he did with extraordinary erudition and aplomb.

Memorable (in the sense that they come most immediately to mind) bits:
The introduction of Dvorak's overture as "Othello, or the Moor the Merrier"
A Mother's day reference to "Riccardo's muti" (this was part of a string of similar witticisms which I wish I could remember in toto)

Aug. 06 2013 11:24 AM
June LeBell from Sarasota (but at the moment, Santa Fe)

Lloyd was a great colleague, friend and guide to me at WQXR. He always had wisdom and wit...and working with him ( in our later years, his shift was just before mine so we had a chance to see each other and talk every day!), was not only fun but also a learning experience for me. Pronunciations...especially Japanese...were a great help. My favorite was his insistence on the two different ways to say the name Gustav. "Gus-tuv" for Holst and "Goo-stav" for Mahler. Lloyd Moss was what WQXR was about and his presence made us all better announcers and better people. I miss him.

Aug. 06 2013 11:14 AM
audra thomas from StatenIsland

Remembering Mr.Moss...

... 'so hard to say , "good-bye" to such a fine old friend.

I grew-up listening to his lovely gentleman on our classical music station, and when he retired after so many years of speaking to us through the air-ways, I added my observations of his long career, here... just as I am doing now, and I just couldn't believe it when he actually responded with a personalized message to me! He was so gracious... and I'll always miss the kindly gentleman, whose voice was much "younger" than his years, and who introduced me to classical music.

Mr.Moss... no one who ever heard you on the radio will ever forget your contribution to your listening public, and for myself, please allow me to express my sincere thanks for your contribution to my life.


Aug. 06 2013 11:13 AM
Rob Palmer from Bangor ME

Always enjoyed Lloyd Moss; what a great voice. Early days I could only listen at night from Washington and New England on 1560, which sometimes reached Miami and was better from a car radio. Today I can use the internet and run FM thru my stereo. Heartfelt condolences to his family.

Aug. 06 2013 10:39 AM
Les from Miami, Florida

Living in Florida, my only knowledge of Lloyd Moss is from his hosting of "Music at First Hearing", which I enjoyed for many years. I always consider him a jewel in the crown besides George Jellinek in "The Vocal Scene" and the Metropolitan Opera and New York Philharmonic broadcasts. I'd like to offer my condolences to his family.

Aug. 06 2013 10:25 AM
Les from Miami, Florida

Living in Florida, my only knowledge of Lloyd Moss is from his hosting of "Music at First Hearing", which I enjoyed for many years. I always consider him a jewel in the crown besides George Jellinek in "The Vocal Scene" and the Metropolitan Opera and New York Philharmonic broadcasts. I'd like to offer my condolences to his family.

Aug. 06 2013 10:25 AM
Jack McConville from Jersey City

Laugh-out-loud funny when he wanted. In one ad, he was hawking occasional pieces for a furniture vendor. When he was finished he said he had always thought of occasional pieces as casual sex in the living room. Then hr played Holst.

Aug. 06 2013 09:52 AM
12-String Frank from Staten Island

He had a great voice for a classical music station.

Aug. 06 2013 09:48 AM
Jim Trier from White Plains, NY

My entire life included listening to the greatest voices in New York radio from the DJs of the '50s Rock 'n Roll stations to the calm maturity and wit of Lloyd Moss in the '90s and 2000s on WQXR. I was saddened when he retired in 2006 and sent him an email to tell him so. To my amazement, he answered me with a nice note. I am saddened even more now that his voice has become silent, but I believe in the hereafter and expect to listen again to Lloyd's wit and wisdom on that heavenly classical music station when my time comes to pass on. God rest you Lloyd.

Aug. 06 2013 08:50 AM
Rocco Staino from Poughkeepsie

I knew Lloyd both by his voice on WQXR & by his children's books. He was a avid supporter of the Books for Kids Foundation, often participating in its events. Both my daughters now in their 20's fondly remember his readings.
When I mentioned his passing to my daughter and asked "if she remembered him". She replied, "Of course, he's the Zin Zin guy!"

As I said when introducing him at an event, "Lloyd Moss, the man who puts class in classical."

Aug. 06 2013 07:26 AM
Tom Walsh from Montclair, NJ

I'm saddened to hear of the passing of Lloyd Moss. I am a professor of math education at Kean University, Union, NJ. I invited Lloyd Moss to read his children's books in front of my class several times (2005 - 2007). He was very animated in his readings, and the whole class enjoyed his reading. He autographed books of students who bought his book. As well, I fondly remember his hosting of the afternoon WQXR afternoon show. His humor and insights on the music were wonderful. He will be missed.

Dr. Walsh

Aug. 06 2013 06:22 AM
Russ Gordon from Plainview, NY

Lloyd was my cousin. When it was time to begin my working career, Lloyd met me at his apartment in the city, many times with Anne there also. He helped me so much meeting people in my career. Even if we were meeting not to talk career, it was always a pleasure to meet up with Lloyd and his wife Anne. I read his book Zin Zin the violin to my boys night after night. They wrote reports about the book when they were in school Though they never got to meet him, they did learn about Lloyd. My sons to this day read and listen to anything connected to Lloyd online or the radio and appreciate his taste in music.
You will be sorely missed. You made listening to classic music not only enjoyable, but a learning experience. Rest in peace Lloyd, as the violins will play for you.

Aug. 05 2013 11:47 PM
Steve L from morristown, nj

He was a class act all the way. His wit and humor will be sorely missed. My condolences to his family. RIP Lloyd

Aug. 05 2013 11:38 PM
Mary Heller from Poughkeepsie, NY

Lloyd Moss was already a WQXR "fixture" when my husband and I arrived in NYC in 1958. We discovered WQXR early on and its permanent place on our radios changed only from 1560 AM to 96.3 FM. Fast forward to 2006 when we purchased Zin Zin Zin a Violin and Our Marching Band for our grandchildren. We wrote to WQXR wondering if it would be possible to get in touch with Lloyd Moss so he could autograph the books. To our delight Mr. Moss himself wrote and said of course; send me the books. We sent them to his home address, he wrote wonderful notes in each and returned the books. That was in November, 2006. We sent a thank you in a Christmas card which included a photo of the grandkids reading the books. Again he responded with a Christmas card of his own and a very warm and wonderful note. We treasure his warm words and his books...but most of all we shall never forget his charm and humor all those years we listened to his quips on WQXR. Rest in peace, Lloyd Moss. Our condolences to the family.

Aug. 05 2013 10:22 PM
joel from manhattan

I saw the NY Times listing today about Lloyd's passing. I remember when he had surgery late in 1999 or maybe early 2000's, and when he returned to the air, he thanked the Doctor who had helped him regain full usage of his voice. I thought that was kind to remember a professional who was a supportive role, not the primary physician treating the primary ailment. I enjoyed listening to his in the afternoons while I did my homework during high school in the 1990's, and extend a salute to his memory of a well-lived life.

Aug. 05 2013 10:20 PM
Frank Kain from Brooklyn NY

An additional comment, following my first.

I recall his farewell interview with, I believe, Jeff Spurgeon. Of all the things he said about his time on the air this stands out in my mind: "I never announced the next piece of music, or anything else, by saying 'coming up'. That always reminds me of a bad lunch." I laughed until I cried on hearing that.

Aug. 05 2013 08:58 PM
Frank Kain from Brooklyn, NY

I like to think of Lloyd the way I think of Duncan Pirnie. They both welcomed me into the workings of their shows with erudite banter and some of the worst puns I've ever learned (by heart!). I miss them both dearly. To Lloyd's survivors I offer my sincere sympathy but also my eternal envy that you folks had him in your lives for so much longer than we did.

Rest in peace, dear Lloyd.

All best,
-Frank Kain
Brooklyn NY

Aug. 05 2013 08:49 PM
Kenneth Bennett Lane, Lake Hiawatha, NJ from Richard Wagner Music Drama Institute, Boonton, NJ

LLOYD MOSS, a singular, upbeat warm-hearted personality with colleagues like Thomas H. Cowan [of WNYC], Olin Downes, Sigmund spaeth and Milton Cross of MET OPERA broadcasts and George Jellinek of WQXR, ALL distinctive and personable, all of whom I corresponded with by regular mail and George Jellinek with whom I presented my commentary and excerpts from from my singing at the main hall of Carnegie Hall on pre-broadcast MET OPERA WQXR Ads to include some of the selections from my upcoming Isaac Stern Auditorium [Carnegie Hall] singing of the Wagnerian heldentenor roles on my two ALL- WAGNER concerts, on Sunday, June 18th, 1955 at 2 PM and the WAGNER-THE EPIC AND THE LYRIC on Thursday May 28th, 1998 at 8 PM. One is more likely to recall with especial pleasure one's earliest acqaintance with something pleasurable and therefore i particularly esteem those I have known from long ago.

Aug. 05 2013 06:20 PM
Constantine from New York

My apologies! My comment got duplicated again! Please remove all but one of it and how ever many of this one show up. Thank you.

Aug. 05 2013 05:40 PM
Constantine from New York

My apologies! My comment got duplicated again! Please remove all but one of it and how ever many of this one show up. Thank you.

Aug. 05 2013 05:40 PM
Lee Munsick from Vero Beach FL

I can't say how sorry I am to hear of the passing of Lloyd Moss - the second of my two special friends at WQXR, the other being George Edwards. Both outstanding personalities and fine, true gentlemen. Lloyd loved the Swedish Rhapsody by Altven - music from the charming 1952 film 'The Stranger Left No Card' starring Alan Badel,which was shown several times in the 50s on Omnibus,Sunday morning CBS-TV. Lloyd would play the theme often, and always pointed out that it came from "Stranger" - it was obvious he loved it too, as did/do I. I wrote and asked if he knew where I could get a copy. He called me, and we had a great talk. He said he would send a video to me. I was elated until several days later I had another call which delated me, as he said to his chagrin and sadness,his copy was ruined! About two weeks later a perfect copy came in the mail, unannounced! We kept in touch for some years. Between Lloyd Moss and George Edwards in particular and all the other great music and voices, I enjoyed many hours, days and years with WQXR, my favorite and truly classical companion. Now in Florida just learned we can get the same programming online, which is now one of my PC bookmarks! Many thanks gents - enjoy that great mike in the sky! Lee Munsick aka Ron Pierce

Aug. 05 2013 05:14 PM
Howard Garrett from Montgomery, NY

Lloyd Moss had a wonderful voice that was a pleasure to listen to. You felt he meant everything he said. In those early days there were no female announcers, and all the men had beautiful baritone or bass voices. The news started on the dot of the hour. Everything you heard on WQXR was just perfect. And when those wonderful announcers spoke you listened. It was as if you were listening to a great authority. I miss those days. I send my sympathies to Lloyd's family.

Aug. 05 2013 05:03 PM
Constantine from New York

Extremely sorry to hear of Mr. Moss's passing. I'm glad to have corresponded with him on a few occasions and of having met him once. I loved his sense of humor. A few favorite examples: He introduced a piece in F Major and remarked that a work played earlier was also in F Major "and probably still is." When a recording of Haydn's "Philosopher" symphony (No. 22) kept skipping, he remarked that "we'll have to take it philosophically." After playing a scratchy record of the song, "How to handle a woman," from Camelot, he said, "How to handle a woman, how not to handle a record."

Aug. 05 2013 04:53 PM
Miles from Montclair, NJ

Lloyd Moss stands as a giant in the world of classical music. An announcer and commentator par excellence, he had the uncanny ability of connecting directly with his listeners over the airways that was unique. He even graciously responded to me after I wrote to him to express my admiration and appreciation of the joy he brought to listeners such as myself when he retired from WQXR -- and he had never even met me or heard of me before. Nobody who regularly tuned in to his time slots on WQXR will ever forget him. He not only was possessed of a beautiful announcer's voice, but his delivery was always marked by a subtle wit that never ceased to both educate and entertain. I still miss the demise of "First Hearing", a show he hosted for quite some time and made many a New York traffic jam I found myself in not only bearable, but actually enjoyable. He will continue to be greatly missed.

Aug. 05 2013 04:09 PM
Vinny Marino from Staten Island, NY

Very sad to hear that legendary WQXR announcer Lloyd Moss has passed away. We didn't get to work together much, but as a listener, I was always a big fan. No matter how old he was, Lloyd was always hip on the air. My favorite line of his was, "That was music for 2 celli. It had to be celli because jam don't shake like that..." Lloyd welcomed me as the "new kid" during one of our monthly WQXR town meetings for the staff, and I'll never forget that.

- Vinny Marino
WQXR Announcer, 2006-2009

Aug. 05 2013 03:58 PM
Kevin Wrenn from Astoria

Miss him. He was sui generis.

Aug. 05 2013 03:54 PM
Thomas Eccardt from New York

LLoyd Moss' humor extended beyond puns. As a host for a then commercial station, he had to put up with some inane announcements, some narrated by the owners of the establishments themselves. I remember an antiques show lady who used to entice us listeners with promises of “porcelain, majolica and jewelry” on offer at her shows. Lloyd relieved our boredom a little with his comment “love that julery!” in imitation of this philistine's mispronunciation.

Aug. 05 2013 03:35 PM
Paul Prince from Merrick

Having grown up on Long Island, where I still live, I've been a big fan of Lloyd Moss since I was a child. I was very sad when Lloyd announced that he was retiring from WQXR in 2006, but I consoled myself with the hope that he might occasionally return to WQXR's airwaves as guest announcer. Alas, that hope is now gone. But at least his wit and sense of humor live on in my memory, as well as in the voices of the announcers he influenced, including Jeff Spurgeon. My condolences to his wife, Anne, and his four children.

Aug. 05 2013 03:25 PM
warren bodow from New York

Lloyd Moss was a true radio professional. He mastered his craft and understood what business he was in: attracting and holding an audience. It was a pleasure working with him and being in his company. Our condolences to Anne and his family.

Warren Bodow, President, WQXR, 1983-1998

Aug. 05 2013 03:17 PM
Gary Moses from blog

A great voice that once our radios filled
Like a symphony ended has been stilled

My favorite bit of "irreverence" is the definition of a piece of music appended to the beginning of a no longer performed opera is a "left overture!"

Aug. 05 2013 03:13 PM
Tom Graul from Brooklyn

So sorry to hear of Mr. Moss' passing, but so glad to have had many happy afternoons listening to him on WQXR. I missed him after his retirement, and more so now. But he'll keep a fond place in my radio memories. Best wishes and condolences to his family on their loss.

Aug. 05 2013 03:12 PM

I grew up listening to LLoyd Moss and he nurtured my passion for classical music (and my appreciation for dry wit). I cried when he retired, and I now shed tears at his passing. He was a giant.

Aug. 05 2013 03:07 PM
Patty from New York

I also grew up listening to Lloyd Moss on WQXR in the 60's. His light hand and quick wit was a big factor in getting a teenaged girl whose musical taste ran to rock to come to love classical music. I am so sorry to hear of his passing, but he leaves many happy memories among his fans, while this once teenaged listener now reads Zin! Zin! Zin! A Violin! regularly to her young students. My condolences to his family.

Aug. 05 2013 02:52 PM
Gev Sweeney from Ocean Grove, New Jersey

I grew up listening to LLoyd Moss on WQXR and remember being disappointed that not all radio announcers had his sense of humor. He had me believing it was an essential part of the job! He was his own, wonderful brand. Condolences to his family.

Aug. 05 2013 02:41 PM

I am sorry to hear about Lloyd's passing. I very much enjoyed listening to him. Condolences to his wife and the Moss family.

Aug. 05 2013 02:26 PM

I started listening to Lloyd Moss back in the 1960's when he had his afternoon shift from 3:00pm to 5:00pm. I used to run home from school as fast as I could so I could tune in WQXR at 1560am. We couldn't afford a new FM radio. I missed a few minutes of his program since school didn't let out until almost 3:00pm. I particularly listened for the music, of course, but also for Lloyd's weird(?) sense of humor. When he returned after the 4:00pm news break, I remember him saying a few times LLOYD MOSSBACK (LLOYD MOSS, BACK) and then apologize for referring to that slimy fish. Another time I remember Lloyd saying that they could fit more music into his program if they played the 33 1/3 LPs at 78rpm. I will always have fond memories of Lloyd. He was one of a kind, like all the announcers were at WQXR. And the present day ones are pretty good too!


Aug. 05 2013 02:15 PM
Benita from Cary, NC

So very sad to read about Lloyd Moss. Remember him well and growing up listening to his pleasant voice. Peace and prayers to his family.

Aug. 05 2013 01:57 PM

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