Archives: May/June 2020

Compiled and Written by Don Barrett
Edited by Alan Oda

Another LARP Passing Discovered

(June 30, 2020) The radio highway is littered with huge stars from a particular market, yet for one reason or another they never translate that stardom to Los Angeles. Clark Race was as big as they get in Pittsburgh at KDKA and also host of a tv dance show at KDKA/tv. He came to 710/KMPC and really never became one of the stars at the Station of the Stars.

There are plenty of others, but this story is about Joe Light. He was the two timer at KIQQ (K-100) who might be the biggest jock in the history of Omaha. He was a legend in the 60s and 70s in his market. He worked at Don Burden’s KOIL on and off (mostly on) from about 1961 until about 1978. He was always getting into trouble with station management and getting fired, so he would take a job with a competitor.

But he was so popular, KOIL would hire him back. Joe was to Omaha what Larry Lujack was to Chicago, or The Real Don Steele was to Los Angeles.

“Well the first time Joe came to KIQQ in 1979 was when general manager Pat Shaughnessy brought him in to do mornings,” remembered Bruce Chandler who was on the air with Joe at K-100. “Pat was from Omaha so he obviously knew him from those days. The second one was when George Wilson teamed him up with comedian Jeff Thomas. It was Jeff & Joe in the morning. He never really caught on.”

“Joe left Omaha in the late 1970s, never to be heard from again in these parts,” said an Omaha colleague.

Born Charles Springer, he died March 28, 2013, four days before his 80th birthday.

“After Omaha, we went to Council Bluffs, Iowa, then to Denver, Kansas City, Texas, Oregon, a few others, and then Hollywood,” said Joe’s son on a tribute site. “That was his goal. To one day make it to Hollywood as a dj and so he quit. When dad quit and went into radio advertisement, he did a couple more little radio shows a number of years later, one in San Diego and one in Sacramento but he really didn’t have his heart into it anymore. The style of DJing had changed so much and the place in Sacramento wouldn’t allow him to use the name Joe Light, he just moved on to other things. I would like to be able to tell you that he continued to do great things but in all honesty his heart never really got into anything else like it did the radio.”

His sign-off was, "Light's Out everybody."
Side note. Radio owner Don Burden was enamored with the success of our Robert W. Morgan in the 60s and 70s, he cloned the character and created “Roger W. Morgan” for his stations. At one time he had a “Roger W. Morgan” at his stations in Portland, Omaha, and Indianapolis. There were two different “Roger W. Morgans” in Indianapolis.  One actually changed his name legally to Roger W. Morgan.

And Here's to You Mrs. Robinson

(June 29, 2020) The author of The Graduate has died at the age of 81. The book was a failure but a Hollywood producer got the film rights and turned it into an instant classic. It was the story of the Dustin Hoffman character having an affair with Mrs. Robinson, the wife of his father’s business partner. One could argue the success of the movie came from the incessant radio play of the Simon & Garfunkel hit song. Whoa, whoa, whoa. The author once said: “After college I got interested in the wife of a good friend of my parents and realized it might be better to write about it than to do it.”

Hear Ache. Former KFWB news anchor Ken Jeffries is celebrating 37 years of marriage to Stephanie Yellin-Mednick. Happy news … David Schwartz found a list of radio truths collected by Julian Breen, former programing exec with WABC-New York ad KYA-San Francisco. Here’s an example: No matter what she says, the sexy-sounding girl on the request line who wants to do the wild thing with you is ugly and underage and if your General Manager likes the way the station is sounding, you're in trouble … Think Zoom was created for the coronavirus pandemic? Wink Martindale was Zooming in the 60s. “ZOOM was a local show and it was my first job as a game show host,” recalled Wink. “It was a simple concept: Zoom in close up on a person, place or thing. With every correct response by contestants, the camera slowly zooms out to show more of the subject until there was a winner … Bill Gardner, host of Rhapsody in Black on KPFK, is celebrating 50 years of marriage with Paulette. There must be a Sam Cooke song to play at the virtual party … Consultant George Johns asks rhetorically: “Have you ever heard of a radio market where the sales department led the station into battle?” … One LARP couldn’t see a woman’s face while shopping at Costco over the weekend because of the mask she was wearing, but he could see her tee-shirt that had “Guess” on it. He shrugged and said, “Implants?” She punched him … KFI’s Wayne Resnick posed an interesting question on social media over the weekend. “What band has the highest percentage of songs that sound the same?” Wayne is thinking ZZ Top ... Barry Funkhouser is producing a new podcast series on the history of Camarillo. Listen here.

Email Saturday 6.27.2020

** Sweet Mentor

“Two amazing men launched my radio career: Rick Scarry and Sweet Dick Whittington. I was just a teenager, stumbling through my first professional gig. Sweet Dick would spontaneously call me into the studio to read a spot live on the air and praise me for all to hear. I was terrified and thrilled. 

Looking back, one realizes that ‘sweet’ is the most apt word to describe this funny, gentle, generous human. Loved by many.” – Keri Tombazian

** Sweet Dick Was a Gift

Sweet Dick Whittington was a gift to all who heard him and despite word of his temper he was the kindest, most generous person you could ever imagine to those of us who shared his space on a daily basis.

I had the pleasure of being part of his menagerie at both KFI and KGIL. Captain America, His Sweetness, Sweet Dick. To me he will always be Sonny [it's what his grandfather called him].” – Ed Ziel

** Open Email to Sweet Dick

“Great photo with Don Barrett in LARP this morning.

I bet you miss your time at KNJO more than ANYTHING, right?

I miss you too, especially with all the craziness these days.

Good to see you are well and happy.” – Harvey Kern

** Response from Sweet Dick

"Thank you Harvey. I hope you are doing well, and taking care of yourself.

I begged Barrett to substitute your name instead of mine in his column. He wouldn't budge. He hates you because you're taller than he is. Come to think of it - I hate you for the same reason. 

I guess the 'touchy, feely era' is gone forever, isn't it? There are some women whom I have touched that are glad it's over. But that's for another time.

My best to you. You are a good man Harvey Kern." - Dick Whittington

** Sweet Lunch

“So. Jealous. ;)” – Mike Nolan

** Amazing Man

“Loved your article on having lunch with Sweet Dick. He's an amazing man. He was friends with my partner Guy Hackman at K-Jewel. He cut all our fantastic station promos. He's the best.” - Kyle Ronemus    

** Keep the Legends Alive

“Enjoyed your State of the Site and the insight you gave us on your life and career. Would love to see a page from ‘Don’s Scrapbook’ from time to time. You hear about us, now we need to hear more about you and your illustrious career! is MUCH appreciated by those who made radio in SoCal great. The names in your stories and the emails you receive are all from those people who inspired us to get into this business and want to work in one of THE greatest radio markets ever.

PLEASE continue your work, at least for the short term. Life imposes change, but do know that we APPRECIATE YOU and all that you do to keep the Legend alive!” – Mike Wagner, KDES, KEZY, KIIS/fm, KBZT/KEZR, KRLA  

** Appreciates Site

“Loved your State of the Site, especially good picture of you and your grandson.

Thank you for the reading tip, too. You are truly blessed. Thanks for everything.” – Phil Harvey

** Site Should Be Fun

“All I want is for you to continue as you have — but only for as long as it’s fun! 

You’re having more of an influence than you know. When I was teaching radio at LBCC, I would often bring the site up in the classroom. Today’s kids live online, of course, and the stories and personalities featured in proved to them that the medium was important, that it mattered. It sure made my job easier.” – Ken Borgers

** Radio Has Been ’Belly-Belly Good to Me

“I read your post about the State of the Site. You have suited up and showed up daily, for a long time. People touch base with you, on an almost daily basis. I look forward to your posts each day, and also understand that you are way past retirement age, and deserve to ‘have a life,’ if you choose. I would in no way begrudge you if you decided to move on and do something different with your life.

You live in a beautiful setting, have a strong foundation in sobriety, and have passed on so much and touched so many, I understand how you are taking a look at your life.  

I did it every day for 56 years, until November 15, 2018 when I was able to call my shot, and name the day that I wanted to retire. I haven’t regretted it for a moment. My life is full. Whatever you choose, I’m grateful to have you for a valued friend and co-inhabitant of an industry that has been, ‘belly-belly good to me.’ Lots of love from Fresno.” – Joe Collins

** Mack Attack

“I am so happy to see you’re able to get on with your grandparenting and child spoiling.

I, like you, have many episodes of Bosch under my belt and am enjoying it thoroughly.  A really fine production.

Stay well my friend. Write LARP forever.” – Gary Mack

** Tom Clay Fan

“I always like the Father’s Day post about your dad. I do hope you are around with LARP, for a while longer.

I miss my dad and mom a lot, and as the years go by, I think of how blessed I have been. I think of my friend Tom Clay often. He was a great friend, mentor and got me involved with radio, at KRLA and KWIZ. His son Ron, and how he sounded like Tom, and died so young. I have lost track of his daughter Candace ‘Candy.’ I hope she is doing well. The last time we were all together, was at his rented condo at 7232 Penn Way, in Stanton. We were at KWIZ at Willow Wick golf course.

Since we both knew Tom, you before me, I just wanted to share and let you know how much I have enjoyed reading Los Angeles Radio People, and keeping up with my friends. Nice pic of you and Matthew. I wish we could have met in person.” - Gary Lane

** Radio Will Never Be What is Once Was

“After reading your very reflective-contemplative article about the future of I agree with several of your assessments. The main one is that commercial radio isn’t what it used to be. With consolidation and announcers doing voiceovers for a wide selection of radio stations, many are not even located in the market. And radio isn’t EVER GOING TO BE WHAT IT ONCE WAS.

I can tell you put in a lot of work for your site. If you decided to say goodbye to this hard work I for one would wish you VERY WELL. Although you would be missed.” – Chuck Norton, Salt Lake City (retired – formerly from So.Cal)

** Grandparenting

“So glad I logged in today. What a wonderful column! Isn’t being a grandparent the greatest invention of all time? We were able to give the kids a break and had our 2-1/2 year-old granddaughter overnight. It put a cherry on top of Father’s Day.

Couldn’t help but notice the quote from Merrill Schindler. His sister is/was a NICU nurse at Sierra Vista. I look forward to our next cup of coffee.” – Ron Yukelson, San Luis Obispo

** LARPs in Yesteryear

“Thanks for your State of the Site. A very fine look at life today, from a very fine and good man who writes about the glories and accomplishments of our blessed ‘yester-years.’" – Anthony Ochoa

** State of DB

“Today’s column! Pictures! Great stories. Great thoughts from D.B. Love that you got that producer credit! Great column. I wouldn’t mind a bit if you want to keep weaving State of D.B. stories like this is. They’re fun. Perfect time for it, during pandemic.” – Anita Garner

** Sam Rubin Thoughts

“I have been meaning to write you since you published your ‘State of the Site’ on June 22. I was particular struck by this sentence from you.

‘At some stage, LARadio will come to an end. It will have served its usefulness, so before someone pulls out a pistol and puts it out of its misery, I’ll get the message, pack up and go home.’

Doubtlessly my thoughts here are reflected and amplified by many others when I emphatically state in no uncertain terms – now is NOT the time to go home. I think we all realize that broadcast commercial radio is in especially dire straits. Ratings and revenue are a shadow of what they once were, the over reliance on automation and syndication has taken the ‘live’ and ‘local’ out of live local radio, and the late-model hybrid I drive everyday doesn’t even an AM band option for the radio.

Meanwhile, podcasts flourish, and other audio options are doing really well too. It begs the question, what has gone so very wrong with local radio? I think the excuse is that audio technology has become better, and thus there are so many more options for audiences.

The real answer is that local commercial radio has become so much worse. They’re literally chasing audiences away with ridiculous commercial spot loads, and incredibly shoddy treatment of the broadcasters, the live bodies that made live local radio so vital and so great to begin with. It occurs to me that maybe one key to the success for the future, lies in the past, and that is one reason why LARadio matters more than ever.

Your site continues to serve as a source of both information and connection.

Here is why it worked for this person, here is why it worked for this station, here is why it worked for this audience. Also, as you well know, LARadio is a huge source of community. Here is what all these people are doing now.

Lastly, LARadio has become a forum of ideas. Can local radio rise from it’s backside? Is it really possible for a live and local station that is well programmed to succeed? I sure hope so, and maybe some of the answers will come from the digital pages of LARadio and it’s many loyal readers.

I have LA Radio in my blood. I was 16 when I started as a request operator at 93 KHJ, and I was in the room when Chuck Martin hired Rick Dees from Memphis for a then unheard of $100,000 salary. I have loved and listened to LA Radio ever since, and I am heartbroken at the state of some stations and the idea that somehow smart management is better than smart on-air personalities. I don’t think that has ever been the case.

The audience is always right, and right now, their ears are mostly elsewhere. How do we lure them back? Again, maybe some of the answers will be found in the digital pages of LARadio.

Lastly, it is really rare that someone can be of service. Your site is exactly that. You provide a service that no one else does, and it is deeply appreciated and it really matters. The State of the Site is sound!” – Sam Rubin

** 50 Shades of Gray

“I love everything about LARadio!

Idea: Using a different color background behind the Nostalgia pieces to highlight them as such. Perhaps a color similar to the shade paper turns after aging.’ – Greg Glaser

** Movie Recommendation

“Thanks for the updates on your goings-on with the pandemic changing life as we know it. Since you brought up the subject of movies and using them to pass the time, I thought I’d recommend one, on the slim chance you’re unfamiliar with it. The Big Picture should be one that hits close to home, given your years in the film business. Released in 1989, it was Christopher Guest’s directorial debut, and stars a young Kevin Bacon, along with a treasure trove of supporting familiar faces.

In an inexplicably uncredited part, Martin Short nearly steals the whole movie, playing a somewhat effeminate, rather neurotic talent agent. A biting send-up of Hollywood, studio execs were apparently none too pleased with the film [as you can imagine], so it got a very brief theatrical release before then heading to cable and home video. Definitely worth a look, or I’m assuming in your case, a re-look.

Stay well, and I look forward to possibly seeing you in October.” – Dave Kunz

** Custer’s Second to Last Stand

“The Custer cartoon brings to mind something you may have seen during your days down here.  It was on Santa Monica Boulevard in Santa Monica. When I was at KTTV, I would pass it if I used an ‘alternate route’ to get to work. It was a newsstand named ‘Custer's Last Newsstand.’ 

And like the 7th Cav’s namesake commander, it’s gone, but it always made me smile as I drove by.” – Warren Cereghino

** Kimmel’s Red Face

“I appreciate your mention of Jimmy Kimmel’s apology for his past use of blackface when he was doing Comedy Central. I read his apology, and as both a Christian and minority I believe him. For the LA Times opinion writer to judge his words as lame is an assumption I choose not to make.

Congrats on your Father's Day with your family. That is a cute picture of you and your grandson!

It was the first Father's Day that my sister and I couldn’t go see my brother and sister-in-law and kids [4 girls, 2 boys and 5 grandchildren!] but we got to call him and say hi. Yesterday really did enforce that the ‘new normal’ will never be normal, just something we have to get through until things get better.

I wouldn’t change a thing about LARP. I really enjoy the different viewpoints and histories of the personalities and movers and shakers behind the mike. You do a great job of being inclusive to both the heyday of radio and the uncertainty but hope of its future.

When you mention your days in the movie business it made me think of how my uncle Ruben Lopez started. He was with Pacific Title and then was a professional artist in promotion for the studios before he became a courtroom artist for KTTV. 

I loved the article by Alan Oda about the lunch you both had with Dick Whittington; his ‘invasion of Catalina’ alone is priceless!” – Julie T. Byers

** On the Flip Side of Kimmel

"I’m sorry Jimmy Kimmel, but your apology, while it did what it was supposed to accomplish on your end, falls on deaf ears. If you had apologized without the comment regarding 'leaders who prejudice to divide us' then it would have been more of an apology. Just own up to it. It was wrong. And by the way, I am a big fan of yours." - Ruben Gonzalez

** Endorsements by Newspeople

“The other day, on one of the talk stations, I heard a news anchor, who identified herself by name, doing a commercial for a financial institution. I didn't think radio stations permitted their news people to do endorsement spots.

I’m curious to know how LARP feel about this. Does it lessen the credibility of the news operation?” – Tom Burfield

** San Diego Reader Story Re Foreign Ownership

“Phoenix Radio probably is trying to keep a lower profile because it was highly – perhaps too highly – visible when they were part of an attempt to purchase KDAY several years ago.  Unfortunately for them, I was affiliated with Don McCoy’s Magic Broadcasting at the time and he was trying to reacquire the majority ownership himself, and I uncovered the fact that Phoenix had strong ties [a large chunk of their ownership] to the Chinese government. I then filed an objection with the FCC in which I laid the results of my investigation out for display.

The FCC never got to rule on it, as the consortium suddenly decided that KDAY’s signal ‘didn’t cover the right parts of the market’ [which I also found suspect, because no one enters into an agreement to purchase a station without including in their due diligence where the signal covers] and withdrew their bid.

Therefore, it does not surprise me that Phoenix is part of this and that they are trying to conceal it. My filing against the KDAY deal suggested in no uncertain terms that they were attempting to deceive the Commission by the ‘lie of omission’ and that alone made them unfit to hold a license.  [The worst thing you can do when dealing with the FCC is lie to them.] In my opinion, the cross-border program origination authorization should be terminated with prejudice.

And to Alex Meruelo: Now you know who was responsible for KDAY being available for you to purchase.” – K.M. Richards

** History of Market #2

“Great piece on me, very well written. So well put together that it brought tears to my own eyes.

Fantastic picture of you and your grandson.

Thank you for all the years of Stories on the current state and the history. It has been incredible to be a small part of your site and the history of market #2.” – Michael Davis  

My older son will frequently send a movie poster that punctuates our life together.
This week I received this poster with a curt: "I know what you were doing 41 years ago today."

Pure Joy for 30 Years

(June 26, 2020) KNAC has a special place in the history of Southern California radio. At 105.5, the Long Beach fm station went through a variety of heavy metal machinations, with their moniker “Pure Rock” being arguably its most successful. The birth of the "Pure Rock" format was the response to Iron Maiden selling out four shows in a row at the Long Beach Arena with no significant radio airplay.

The station attracted some popular personalities like ThrashpieKiller Kat, "Wild Bill" ScottLady DiGonzo GregStew HerreraLong Paul, and the late Tawn "The Leather Nun" Mastery.

Michael Davis got his early radio start at KNAC in 1989. He spent a few years at KFMG-Albuquerque before joining KNAC. What is fun about his story is that this 38-year broadcast professional just celebrated 30 years at KRKC-Monterey.

"It's been phenomenal, endless on-air fun, Bay Area rock concerts and sports.” emailed Michael. “I've been granted a lifetime of opportunity on top of my two previous gigs. Gratitude to my parents, grandparents and Davis family.

How in the world did he last three decades at the same station?  "Perseverance, Integrity, dignity, respect for the listeners and our KRKC clients is paramount,” Michael responded. “My appreciation to Bill Gittler Lola R. Berlin, Mark Fitzmayer, Darren Nutt and all who have made KRKC incredible over three decades."

Hear Ache. Have you been to a Zoon memorial celebration yet? Former KFI personality in the late 70s, Terry Nelson, died last month, at age 73 and you can participate with his celebration of life tomorrow. Barry Salberg has sent along Zoom info: Saturday at 11 a.m. ID: 850 5808 2774 … Eleven years ago, Farrah Fawcett lost her battle with cancer at the age of 62. Our marketing department worked on an awful movie starring Farrah and Kirk Douglas called Saturn 3. She couldn’t have been nicer, especially in trying times. She was red hot. During an industry dinner in Las Vegas she had to go to the bathroom. The insane paparazzi followed her in and started pointing their camera over and under the stall as Farrah was trying to relieve herself. We restored order, fending off the bunch of jerks but she remained gracious throughout the ordeal … Which reminds of a story that former KABC and KNX morning newsman Dave Williams had with Jack Lemmon. Dave walked in on the actor who was standing there in his skivvies. Read the embarrassing story here … Brian McKnight, former morning man at KTWV (the WAVE), will give a special remote performance for fans as part of the “Keith Sweat Presents the iHeartRadio R&B Live Concert Series” at 5 p.m. on: … Bet if Cheryl Lynn had the backing of Neil Bogart, she would have been the Queen of Disco, and not Donna Summer. Cheryl was hot stuff … KSPN’s Keyshawn Johnson is scheduled to be part of a new morning show at ESPN Radio.  

Photo Link: Chuck Blore, creator of KFWB/Color Radio Channel 98, was a guest lecturer at Don Elliot’s class a few years back. Don recapped Chuck’s philosophy about radio: “Talk to people in their own language, voiceover techniques, and a discussion of how he creates his concepts. There is a great bio talk here on his formation of KFWB Color Radio 98 in Los Angeles. I hope you will find it informative and entertaining, as the principles involved are just as applicable today as the day he spoke about them,” emailed Don.

Jimmy Kimmel Apologizes 

(June 25, 2020) Jimmy Kimmel, has apologized for his blackface impersonation of NBA star Karl Malone. During the days when Jimmy and Adam Carolla hosted Comedy Central’s The Man Show, Kimmel appeared in a sketch where he impersonated the former Utah Jazz and Los Angeles Lakers power forward. “I have long been reluctant to address this, as I knew doing so would be celebrated as a victory by those who equate apologies with weakness and cheer for leaders who use prejudice to divide us. That delay was a mistake. There is nothing more important to me than your respect, and I apologize to those who were genuinely hurt or offended by the makeup I wore or the words I spoke.” Kimmel is currently taking a sabbatical during the summer from his ABC late night program. The LA Times paints a scathing portrait of Kimmel on this subject you can read here.

All Access WinnersJoel Denver’s yearly Worldwide Radio Summit Industry was canceled earlier this year due to the coronavirus pandemic. The Summit Awards, originally scheduled to be presented last March, couldn’t be awarded until now. Joel has announced industry winners, with many familiar to fans of LARadio:

Humanitarian Station of the Year: KSON-San Diego
Humanitarian Personality of the Year: Ellen K, morning host, KOST
Lifetime Achievement Award: Mike McVay, McVay Media
Radio Company of the Year: Entercom Communications
Station Air Talent: Kevin & Bean, KROQ
Imaging/Production: Jake Kaplan, KAMP
Online Presence: KIIS/fm
Consultant of the Year: Mike McVay Media
Hear Ache. Congrats to former Arrow 93 pd Tommy Edwards on 51 years of marriage! … Joel Schumacher, director of Batman films, St. Elmo’s Fire and Lost Boys, dies at 80. I met Joel while on the Universal marketing team for one of his lesser successful films, D.C. Cab starring Mr. T and Gary Busey. For many of the players, the film was one of their first efforts, yet there were outsized egos to deal with. Nonetheless, Joel could not have been nicer. We worked really hard on the film. Sometimes you just can’t convince anyone to see it. Guess it is somewhat like radio. If people don’t want to listen, there’s no way to stop them.
Pro-China station broadcasting from Rosarito: Former Mighty 690 under FCC scrutiny (click photo for Ken Leighton story)

Battle of the Whits
by Alan Oda, LARadio Senior Correspondent

(June 24, 2020) It was the ultimate Los Angeles Radio People lunch, the great Dick Whittingon joining LARadio publisher Don Barrett and his lovely bride Cherie, whom my family and I were fortunate to meet in Avila Beach. Yours truly, along with the rest of the Oda clan, were making a periodic visit to the Central Coast – my wife Donna gets to visit where she went to college, while I return to where the Odas first arrived in the U.S.

But as always, I digress.

Dick (aka “His Sweetness”) was in fine form, reminding Don and I that we married lovely women, and that we were both cradle robbers. Guilty as charged.

We dined availing of outdoor patio seating, maintaining our social distance and sharing hand sanitizer. We began the conversation with how all of us were adopting to the isolation caused by the current pandemic (“I wait for the mailman so I can have someone to talk to,” said Dick). Yet we were all truly grateful to be alive, healthy and well.

Of course, there were many stories shared. Dick talked about how he learned from so many, including listening to Arthur Godfrey on WTOP with his grandfather. He said Godfrey was the ultimate salesman on the radio, not an announcer but a conversationalist who beautifully showcased his sponsors. Don mentioned how Earl McDaniel both encouraged him in the radio biz, but more importantly became a personal mentor. 
One of the names that came up was Dick Whittinghill, the longtime morning man of KMPC. While himself doing mornings at KGIL, Dick Whittington (note the similarity in names) would periodically tweak his drive time competitor on the air. Yet when Whittington actually met Whittinghill, the former said the latter could “not have been nicer.” Dick Whittinghill shared stories about his time singing with the Pied Pipers, a vocal group which toured with Tommy Dorsey and his orchestra, before his journey to the Sunset Bouleveard studios of 710 AM. Whittinghill knew how to talk to his audience, bringing listeners together on the commute. Dick Whittington said he learned a lot from the morning veteran, one of the few fond memories he had regarding KMPC. 

A name perhaps unfamiliar to Los Angeles radio listeners, but well remembered in NorCal was Don Sherwood, longtime morning host at KSFO (interestingly, the San Francisco sister station of KMPC). Though Sherwood had a reputation for being temperamental, Dick shared how he had a unique relationship with the Bay Area legend. Sherwood once challenged Dick to fight in the middle of Market Street in the late afternoon (no punches ever landed) before heading to a bar “and telling lies.”

When Don Barrett was introduced to Sherwood as the new program director of KABL, Sherwood took the then 27-year-old recent arrival to The City and seated him in an easy chair before briefing him about what was important to know about San Francisco. Even decades later, Sherwood’s act of generosity is still acknowledged and appreciated.

I shared with Dick the first Whittington exploit I heard, when he was doing middays at KFI. Back in the mid-seventies, when Jaws was “the” movie of the year, Dick learned sharks didn’t sleep (they need to stay in motion to breathe). He surmised the reason big whites attacked people was because their lack of rest made them irritable and prone to attack. So with the help of his listeners, Dick recruited a “card shark,” a “pool shark,” and a “loan shark.”

All three men came to the Ardmore studios to stand in a kiddie pool. Lullabies and other sleepy tunes were offered to the three “sharks,” to lull them to sleep and perhaps modify their vicious temperament. I asked myself “who is this man??” And of course, I was hooked after that.

The afternoon ended far too soon. We could still be at the table listening to tales from two of the best storytellers of L.A. radio, but the restaurant had limited Covid-19 hours. As we said farewell, I said to both gentlemen I’m on the periphery of the L.A. radio community, but thanks to Don and, I’ve met so many wonderful people who entertained me on my still-preferred medium. At the top of that list is Dick Whittington. It was a great day!

Larry Elder Plays Uncle Tom

(June 23, 2020) Larry Elder (870AM) is executive producer of the new film Uncle Tom. It is an “oral history of the American Black Conservative. Uncle Tom examines self-empowerment, individualism and rejecting the victim narrative,” according to the website. “Uncle Tom shows us a different perspective of American History from this often ignored and ridiculed group, the American Black Conservative.” 

Elder (arm outstretched) acknowledges a standing ovation he receivedd at the Dallas premiere of his new documentary film, according to a story on TALKERS.

Attendees at the premiere included former U.S. Congressman Allen West, 2012 presidential candidate Herman Cain, and media personalities, ministers and civil rights activists. Larry has been on the promotion circuit calling attention to his documentary. Last night he was interviewed on Tucker Carlson Tonight. Watch a sneak preview trailer at:
Hear Ache. With Las Vegas back in business, publicist and former LARP Ira David Sternberg sent a couple things you should know if you are planning a visit: Masks are not accepted as gratuities, buffets have a new name –  restaurants, and if you’re hotter than the temperature in Las Vegas, you’re not allowed in the casino … Former KOSTer Mike Sakellarides had a double reason to celebrate last week: He and his wife Barbara celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary, which was coincidentally also Father’s Day in 1970! Congrats to one of the nicest LARP who has had a great career … John Summers, former news direction at KHTS-Santa Clarita joins Cumulus News/Talk KKOB in Albuquerque … Congratulations to Kevin Ross as his radio newsletter Radio Facts turns 25 … I am so lucky today. Having lunch with Sweet Dick Whittington and LARadio senior correspondent Alan Oda. Storytelling and laughs at the Avila Beach harbour ... While some actors may be out of work, KVEC’s Dave Congalton sent a link to a project he is involved with. “All the local actors are out of work because of the virus, so a group of them decided to mount an old-fashioned radio drama and asked me to prepare a script,’ emailed Dave. “I came up with a three-part serial, The Most Beautiful Woman about an LA attorney who gets in over his head when he agrees to reunite two former lovers. Each segment runs about 10 minutes and will be posted on YouTube. I’m also the narrator. We all recorded our parts remotely and sent them to an editor who did a nice job of putting it all together. The actors are grateful to have the opportunity to perform.” Here's the first segment. Hear it here.

State of the Site 

(June 22, 2020) State of the Site is really a misnomer. It is really the state of ME. I like to take personal inventory from time to time to figure out what is working and what isn’t in my life. At some stage, LARadio will come to an end. It will have served its usefulness, so before someone pulls out a pistol and puts it out of its misery, I’ll get the message, pack up and go home.

Oh, that’s right, I am home.

Days turn into nights and nights into days.

The coronavirus pandemic couldn’t have come at a worse time for radio. Already in bankruptcy or soon-to-be, radio companies have been trying to figure out the panacea, or just a way to survive and not give up the vibrancy of fulfilling the needs of the local listener with a much-reduced staff and cratered revenue. Furloughed workers may never come back.

But the real leaders have a grasp of the future and not afraid to make changes. The paradigm of change moves at lightning speed. Just ask Alexa or Siri. We no longer have to wait, when skills and answers are at our finger tips. Procrastination is not our friend.

But the stay-at-home orders require patience. Or at least for me.

I’ve been hunkered down since early March. So many conflicting messages on what to do, so Cherie and I are just use common sense. She is a hospice volunteer and stopped going into nursing homes and assisted living facilities in March. No reason to go into harm’s way. The real losers were her patients, in more ways than one.

I miss seeing my family. My 33-year old son was serving overseas in the Peace Corps when this virus began to infiltrate our lives. Tyler was evacuated from Zambia last March. He arrived at LAX and entered quarantine quarters at a nearby hotel for 14 days, then joined his mother in Torrance. I had yet to see him since his departure a year and a half ago … until yesterday.

He looked great. Heard many of the stories he experienced during his Peace Corps adventure. I think he was happy to be home, despite the circumstances, so he didn't have to worry about what kind of snake had slithered into his hut. He had a cobra and black mamba spend a night.

Tyler lived in a hut behind a home that housed a family of 11. The young lady to the right was learning English from Tyler. They became quite fond of each other. During the day Tyler would be out in the fields with the father and his sons. Everyone lost a little when Tyler was forced to evacuate.

My daughter Alexandra and her husband Simon had a Father’s Day get-together, which also afforded me an opportunity to spend time with my 6-month old grandson (Matthew is my first). Being a fair distance from Alexandra and her husband, coupled with the lockdown, I had only seen him once since his birth at Cottage Hospital in Santa Barbara during the holidays.

He was six months old yesterday and the perfect baby for a few hours. Whotta’ treat.
When I was in the movie business, I was responsible for many film premieres and press junkets. They were always very stressful because it was like live tv. You never got a reboot. No way to do something over. I instilled in my team a mantra that seemed to work. At the start of our event I would tell them: there is a beginning, there is a middle and there will be an end. Eventually all these people will go home.
The problem with this pandemic is that I have no idea where the middle is or when it will come to an end or are maybe we already passed it. We certainly could plan better. Americans seem to always like a quick fix. We can go back to normal once they have a coronavirus vaccine. Really? In our contentious society it will never happen.

I’m in the middle of Doris Kearns Goodwin’s Team of Rivals: The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln. Not sure I will finish the 900+ page book before this pandemic is over, but, oh, whotta fascinating read. The parallels to our times are striking. Lincoln was certainly not the first choice to lead the Republicans and this country into a new era about abolishing slavery and forging a proclamation of emancipation. Lincoln filled his cabinet with friends and rivals so that he would be afforded multiple viewpoints to navigate VERY turbulent times. Next up is Countdown 1945.
Movies and streaming tv shows have played a role in our day to day lives in Avila Beach. TV usually doesn’t go on until after dinner so there hasn’t been a lot to see but we loved Ozarks, I Know This Much is True and Bosch. I'm sure there are more but they all seem to wash over at this point. Many were just fillers.

Watched Rebel Without a Cause on TMC, mainly to see my old high school, Santa Monica High, where James Dean attends. Some LARP in the cast: Sal Mineo (KABC) played Dean’s troubled buddy and Jim Backus (KLAC) played Dean’s father.

Accidentally came across a movie I had forgotten about. I was helping an Indian company find distribution for an animated film about Sinbad. I had never seen the finished film as we shopped it from studio to studio. Even took the film to the Cannes Film Festival.

Once the distribution deal was done so was I. When I watched last month, I had no idea my Indian friends had given me a producer credit. Ah, a new career? Hardly.

Enough about me. Anything you want more or less of from

Email Saturday, 6.20.2020
** All Starts with Smulyan

“I met and worked with Jeff Smulyan many times during the time I was president of the SCBA and when I was EVP/Marketing Strategy at Katz Media. The man is every bit as authentic and amazing as you and Chachi noted. 

Rick Cummings is one of the finest broadcasters I’ve ever met, one of the fairest, most honest people in the business. Every single person I have ever met who worked for either of them has been impressive, including Val Maki, who ran Power 106 and also ran Emmis’s Austin properties, served as Chair of the SCBA during my time there.  I have never respected a person more than I do Val. And Dianna Jason is a force unto herself, a whirlwind of ideas and implementations.

I could go on and on – but it all starts with, as you said, with Jeff Smulyan. I applaud him for his ability to pick the best people and bring out the best in them.” – Mary Beth Garber

** Super Games

“I sincerely thank you for keeping me on your email list.

Regarding the CBS memo stating not being able to ‘…use the term World Cup on the air,’ I was made to think of the long-enduring prohibition on using the words ‘Super Bowl’ on the air. Even though I always honored that request from the NFL at my stations, I likewise always was curious why radio stations are banned from uttering either of those sports terms. I always assumed it only applied to contest and sponsor promotions, but where precisely does the legal line exist? Obviously, sports stations can mention both terms in their sports coverage but what stops music stations from doing the same?

I never researched the issue when I had access to corporate legal teams, but the curiosity still continues to this day.” – Dave Anthony

** Two Minute Commercial Load

“Reading Tom Burfield’s comment, I am reminded that when Bill Drake was brought in to fix KHJ in 1965, the commercial load was so low that he was able to institute a policy of short commercial breaks and a maximum limit on total advertising minutes per hour, with much objection from RKO. The only concern was from the sales department, who worried that if Drake was successful, they wouldn’t be able to capitalize on it. Drake’s reply was that, regardless of the ratings, if all those minutes were sold out, the ‘supply’ was exhausted and ‘demand’ should mandate an increase in the per-minute rate.

And he was right: KHJ never had to break the hourly limit, but the rate card went up many, many times under Drake. KROQ – like so many stations in this pandemic era – has a lower commercial load than had been the case only three months ago. 

All Entercom has to do is take a page from Drake’s playbook and increase the ad rates, regardless of ratings, when demand outpaces supply. That is how it will ‘pencil out,’ Tom, the same way that it did a half-century ago.

Cue the Bill Drake sounder with tympani: ‘50 years ago, today.’)” – K.M. Richards, K.M. Richards Programming Services

** Need Local Radio

“I was a paid subscriber back in the day and I cannot believe all that you do and at no charge!

I live in Orcutt. Our two AM stations are KSMA 1240 with zero local programming, except for 30 minutes or so on Friday. The other is KUHL 1440. KUHL says they are all about news, but the morning guy just reads verbatim the Santa Maria Times.

About the recent Paso Robles shooting: I was driving south on the 101 through the mess, KVEC had much more details than the worthless KPRL, both stations having their morning guys reading verbatim from the Tribune. But for the shooting thing, KPRL, right there in Paso Robles, just continued on with their syndicated program, Ben Shapiro, I think.

Why didn’t KPRL have a guy on the scene? Why did Dave Congalton on KVEC, 30 miles south of Paso Robles, have more info than the lazy bums at KPRL?

Outside of KFI and such, do any AM stations have reporters anymore? Before the terrible deal of deregulation, KSMA in Santa Maria had lots of reporters. KSMA also had Laker and Angel games. When Cheap Channel came in to ruin it all, the Lakers were gone, as was local content. Next was El Dorado and I think they bought KSMA because they hated radio. KPRL not being on scene of the shooting that was going on in their HOME TOWN, was disgusting.” – Herod Lowery

** Fritz Coleman at Gelson’s

“I will greatly miss Fritz Coleman at NBC4. It's funny how certain people in broadcasting actually become part of one's daily life. It's nice to see a friend every day, settling, comforting, a good thing in life. However, I will look forward to our never-ending quest of solving most of the world’s great problems while walking thru the aisles at Gelson’s.

Happy days pal, see ya soon!” – Jeff Baugh

** Nice Guy Fritz

“Hope it’s a happy ride for Fritz Coleman as he rides off into the sunset. It must have been right as I came home from Vietnam when I heard ‘Jay Fredericks’ on WKBW-Buffalo. It was good stuff and he fit right in. When we learned he entered the world of tv, were doubly impressed. 

At a K-Earth Gary Bryan salute to the USO event at The Laugh Factory, I got to meet Jay – er, Fritz who is as nice a guy as you’ll find anywhere. The weather world will be a little less happy.” – Dave Mason

** Mornings with Fritz

“Very nice tribute to Fritz Coleman, whom the Hollywood Media Professionals (former Pacific Pioneer Broadcasters) honored last year. I did middays when KZLA first went Country in 1980, and if I recall correctly, Fritz did the morning show calling himself Jay Fredericks. Decades later, I learned that his father’s name was Frederick. All the same, congratulations to an amazing, durable, multi-talented mensch!” - Mike Sakellarides

** Fritz Good on Radio

“I loved the article about Jay/Fritz Coleman and his days at KZLA. I remember he came on before ‘Natural Neil’ Ross and Barbara Barri before it went Country and he was really good. Good times and a great station.

Thanks for the quip from Adam Carolla. I can just hear his voice saying that about ‘Lady A.’" – Julie T. Byers

"Story of the Century" and the LARPs Telling It

(June 19, 2020) In a rare outburst of coverage about radio, the LA Times devoted a huge amount of space to a piece they headlined, “The Story of the Century.” The killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis has caused local show hosts to throw out the window whatever they were scheduled to talk about and speak to the story at the vortex of everyone’s consciousness. Times writer Randall Roberts featured KRRL’s Big Boy, KPWR’s Nick Cannon, KDAY’s Cece & Romeo, KJLH’s Dominique DiPrimaLon McQ and general manager Karen Slade. “They have responded “with a kind of communal outrage, in the process reconfirming the platform’s role in the L.A. media landscape,” wrote Roberts. The full story can be read here: 

Journalist DeclarationKevin Ross worked in radio in the 90s (KGFJ, KKBT and KACE) before publishing a national newsletter called Radio Facts. The emphasis is on Urban Radio. Kevin is banning all press releases pertaining to conversations about race. “Yesterday we got a total of 25 press releases from various industry corporations about special features, Zooms, and statements pertaining to ‘Conversations about Race.’ This is for ALL industry outlets including black companies.”

Kevin said enough is enough. “As we have been having conversations about race for decades this is truly a case where actions speak louder than words. We KNOW what the problem is … how are we going to fix it? That’s the entire conversation.” 

Grace at KFI. KFI Shannon Farren won two Gracie Awards from the Alliance for Women in Media Foundation.

One was for "Best Local Talk Show," based on a compilation of different stories important to women. “Interviews with a couple who was duped when they tried to adopt a child and a woman who is a genetic detective and is solving cold cases,” emailed the KFI midday co-host.

The other was for the heartbreaking story of the shootings at Saugus High School in Santa Clarita.

From the organization: “The Gracies recognize exemplary programming created by, for and about women in radio, television, and interactive media. Honorees are selected in national, local and student markets, including both commercial and non-commercial outlets. Honorees represent the substance and ethos of women’s storytelling and journalism at its best. Their work during this global state of affairs – full of innovation, courage and endurance – serves as inspiration today for the journalists of tomorrow.”
Local Success. Since moving to the Central Coast for years ago, I was encouraged to listen to KVEC afternoon Talker, Dave Congalton. He’s been servicing San Luis Obispo County with local content for almost 29 years. He loves local radio and we have become very good friends. He has an observation that I wanted to share with you. It speaks to local radio.

“I’ve never felt this much alive and on fire than I have in the last three months since the shutdown began,” Dave shared. “Don't know the ratings and they may not reflect my feelings, but this is absolutely amazing.”

Dave says he can’t believe the number of new callers. “We are consistently strong, even in the 3 p.m. hour which was historically soft. Now it’s often my strongest in terms of callers.” Even the advertisers have returned, continue to return and they have new people on board. “My lunch yesterday was to get this local doctor on board and it worked,” revealed Dave.

“During the Avila Fire earlier this week we were ‘must-listen radio.’ We reminded folks that local radio matters. I'm feeling pretty good about radio these days!”

Great message from Dave Congalton!

Hear AcheRoss Porter and his wife Lin are celebrating 59 years of marriage. Now that’s a homerun … KRRL’s Big Boy and KPWR’s Nick Cannon (for his work in tv) will receive a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame next year.  The announcement was made by Ellen K, Walk of Famer/KOST mornings and Chair of the Walk of Fame Panel ... Jimmy Kimmel announced last night that he's taking the rest of the summer off from his late night tv show. "I've been doing this job for almost 18 years," he said. "I've done 3,130 shows. And there's nothing wrong, my family is healthy, I'm healthy, I just need a couple of months off." ... We're hearing that KFI's John & Ken have been nominated for the Radio Hall of Fame Class of 2020. Whotta' wonderful recognition for our always-relevant afternooners!

Hollywood Walk of Famers Big Boy, Ellen K, and Nick Cannon

Before He Was the 4 Weather Guy, Fritz Coleman Was a LARP

(June 18, 2020) This is the end of another era in Southern California media as Fritz Coleman, LA weatherman for nearly four decades, announced his retirement. Generations of Angelenos grew up watching Coleman, a four-time Emmy winner who spent 39 years on the air. Throughout his time with KNBC/tv, Coleman has been part of one of the nation’s longest-running news anchor teams along with co- anchors Colleen Williams and Chuck Henry and sports anchor Fred Roggin.

He was named a “Treasure of Los Angeles” by the City of Los Angeles, holds the key to the city of Burbank, and is the honorary mayor of Toluca Lake.

Fritz was a LARP first before tv. He was Jay Coleman at Country KZLA in the early 80s. Coleman, a Navy veteran, started off his broadcasting career as a disc jockey and radio talk show host at various stations throughout the country and moved to Los Angeles in 1980 from WKBW-Buffalo.

In an on-line interview he remembered: “When I got to LA, my old boss from my Buffalo radio job was made the VP in charge of radio for Capital Cities Radio. They used to own KZLA here, which was an Adult Contemporary station that went to Country. It was an automated country station, meaning that they play three songs automatically and then the announcer would announce the records and play more. He asked me if I wanted to come work for him and do mornings doing the voice overs. Of course, I bowed down and kissed his feet and said, ‘Absolutely!’”

RJ Curtis, current executive director at CRS (Country Radio Seminar), worked with Fritz at KZLA, between October 1980, and fall of 1982. “Jay / Fritz did mornings at KZLA from its October ’80 launch, until he left in late ’82 to do weather at KNBC4,” emailed RJ.

“I was doing overnights at KZLA and when Jay went to KNBC, I succeeded him in mornings.”

RJ recalls Fritz’s commitment to comedy. “I remember going to see him several times at the Ice House in Pasadena. He was a solid standup comic. He wrote jokes during his morning airshift at KZLA. He didn’t use them on the air, but that’s how he filled his down time, during music sweeps.”

Curtis has high praise for the weatherman. “Fritz is definitely one of the good guys. I was pretty young back then (started at KZLA when I was 20), and he was always supportive, and helpful. He gave me some strong advice on more than one occasion.”

Ex-KNX newsman Tom Storey was also part of that early history at KZLA. “I recall that Fritz had some experience doing weather at a television station back east, it may have been in Washington, DC,” said Storey. “On the weekends he did standup comedy at the Comedy Store and met KNBC/Channel 4 anchor, John Beard, shortly after his arrival in 1980.

After meeting John, who often attended the shows at the Comedy Store, Fritz was hired as a part-time weather reporter at Channel 4.”

Former KOST veteran Ted Ziegenbusch was a neighbor. “Fritz is a genuine, warm and friendly guy. I would see him at the Starbucks, the local drug store and other neighborhood locations. It became a running joke that we were following each other with some kind of app on our phones. While waiting for our coffee, we would stand and talk about the business – his and mine. Yes, they were similar. So, the common ground found us swapping war stories and tales from our decades of employment with behemoth companies.”

Ted continued: “Fritz and I always felt blessed to still be working so many decades after our arrival in Los Angeles. Coincidentally, Fritz started with Channel 4 the same year that I started at KOST, 1982. Now, within five months of each other, we are both officially retired. Congratulations Fritz! You will be missed but never forgotten. You’ve been like a member of our family, on the big screen every night giving us the forecast. I used to love it when you would throw in the words ‘spotty drizzle’ during your weather report. I would immediately start singing ‘spotty drizzle’ to the tune of Don Ho’s song Tiny Bubbles, which always brought a roll of her eyes from my viewing companion, my wife. See you around the neighborhood, Fritz. This time, I’ll buy the coffee!”

Hear AcheArt Bell’s former show producer is re-launching “Best of Art Bell” on the Dark Matter Digital Network … If the NFL plays this season, the Los Angeles Chargers will be heard on a different station. Their Spanish language broadcast moves from KFWB to KBUE-KBUA (Que Buena 105.5/94.3) … Syndicated radio personality Tino Cochino (heard overnights at KRRL, Real 92.3 / fm) has started a series of podcasts. In a recent interview with Real afternoon man J Cruz, he asked Cruz what he thought of iHeart Radio. “This company is talent driven. They believe in what we do. I believe they understand content,” said Cruz … KYSR’s Woody wrote on Twitter: “The league, the players. Major League Baseball sucks. Prove me wrong.” … Social changes in the past month has prompted Lady Antebellum to change their name to Lady A.  Adam Carolla finds "Lady" to be problematic. “It's binary. It should be ‘They A,’” he wrote on social media.
LA Times ad from June 18, 1965 ... part of David Grudt's personal collection

Dave Anthony Came to LA with Trepidation
(June 17, 2020) Dave Anthony, former pd at KODJ / KCBS/fm (Oldies 93), checked in recently from Florida. LARadio not only provides an update on the lives of those we loved on the radio but those who worked their magic behind the microphone. They programmed the stations that we enjoyed listening.

Originally from Pennsylvania, Dave grew up in Las Vegas and studied journalism, broadcasting and music education at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV). As a proficient sax player, the life of a musician began during college years at UNLV, followed by professional performances. He co-founded the Minnesota Music Academy in the 1980s, and was inducted into the Las Vegas Rock Hall of Fame in 2011 and the Nevada Broadcasters Association in 2015.

But morning radio was part of his early work in Las Vegas, Tucson, Denver, and Minneapolis. He could be heard in other cities like San Francisco, Houston, Phoenix, Milwaukee, and Jacksonville on prime midday and afternoon radio shows.

Growing up in Las Vegas, Dave would make trips to LA. “I could never imagine being part of radio there. The traffic, the mega professionals on practically every station. Yikes. It took years of moving to bigger and bigger cities to condition me for when the opportunity came to program one of Southern California’s strongest signals,” he emailed.

The intimidation factor had vanished, but he discovered a new personal challenge.  “Coaching on-air talent that had already achieved true greatness by the time I was just getting started in radio. What on earth could I possibly teach these guys? Yet looking back, I consider my years in LA to be among my biggest personal successes because of what those professionals taught me while I thought I might have been teaching them. No question, I was the bigger beneficiary.”
Dave considered LA like a year-round radio convention. “Unexpectedly bumping into radio and record people in restaurants and grocery stores made living there feel all the more special. In my mind, the LA market was the country’s number one radio community,” he said.

Broadcast management soon beckoned, and Dave became a very successful program director for companies like CBS, Metromedia, and Doubleday in cities including Los Angeles, San Francisco, Phoenix, Minneapolis/St. Paul, Denver, Las Vegas, Jacksonville, and Tucson.

Broadcast consulting quickly followed, with clients across the U.S. and internationally. Providing voiceovers for commercials and corporate videos was a natural extension of his radio career and has been a fulltime occupation for years.

Based in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida – a beach town on the Atlantic Ocean between Jacksonville and St. Augustine – Dave works from an in-home studio with full broadcast capability. Specialties include network tv promos, commercials for tv and radio, corporate videos, website audio, and on-camera training films.

Represented by four talent agents situated across the US, an acting career also blossomed. Dave Anthony has been in films with John Travolta, Selma Hayek, Scott Caan, James Gandolfini, Ed Begley Jr., and Kevin Spacey.

National tv commercials followed, as well as tv shows like America’s Most Wanted and the live television host of the Easter Seals Telethon originating from Las Vegas.

In his continuing voiceover career, Dave Anthony counts among his clients such well-known names as the Miami Herald, the Golf Channel, Rolex, BBC Worldwide, Carrier Air Conditioning, the PGA Tour, Husqvarna, Cub Cadet, and many more. Further information is available at  

Hear Ache. Congratulations to Randy Thomas on 36 years of wedded bliss … Bryan Simmons, former KOST personality for decades, has taken over mornings at Mix 96.7/production director in Elko, Nevada … Our condolences to Pat Gorman on the loss of “great friend and roommate” Donna. Big loss for Pat.

Kids Getting Laptops Greene with Envy

(June 16, 2020) Tim Greene was a familiar voice in the nineties, working at KKBT, KJLH and KMPC. He went on to work in Charlotte at WGIV 103.3/fm and WSGE 91.7/fm.

He has been super busy during the coronavirus pandemic, purchasing laptop computers for students during the “Stay At Home Order.”

During these unprecedented times, the filmmaker and assistant program director/music director and afternoon drive radio personality recently purchased over 400 laptop computers for students in the NC Works NEXGEN program. 

Greene realized many students did not own computers that would enable them to complete their schoolwork assignments from home since all classes were moved online due to the COVID -19 Outbreak.

Two nursing students also received laptop computers from Tim during a Student Success Expo.

NC Works NEXTGEN assists youth 16-24 with barriers to self-sufficiency such as high school dropouts, homelessness, parenting youth and criminal backgrounds to gain either employment or higher-level educational pursuits.

“It was a pleasure presenting these great students with the tools they needed that will help them continue to be as successful as possible in life,” says Greene.

An Open Email to Jeff Smulyan

(June 15, 2020)  Dear Jeff:

I had quite the experience this weekend. Just when everything seemed to be like a Ground Hog day redundancy during this shutdown, I plugged into your interview with Dave Denes on his excellent Chachi Loves Everybody podcast.

My oh, my.

We all know you owned Emmis Communication (KPWR and KZLA) but we learned so much more … about YOU. I sat there mesmerized for an hour. I’m jealous. Just downright envious that I never had the opportunity to work with you. I’ve always felt blessed that I got to experience Gordon McLendon in his heyday and the Ladies Home Journal-controlled Bartell Group, as well as launching KIQQ (K-100) in Los Angeles. But yet in a time when radio people seem so disposable, you do the opposite. You embrace your employees. You said “I’m very proud on how we treat people” to Chachi, who seemed to be an equally huge fan of yours.

Your praise of Emmis president Rick Cummings is rooted in a lifelong friendship. He was the second employee when Emmis launched an AC station on July 4, 1981. “For my midday guy, I hired David Letterman when he was a local weatherman on tv. He was absolutely brilliant. Every day was a new adventure. The guy who I replaced David with was Rick Cummings, who was in production. No one understands programming and content better in America. We became very close friends. We’ll be together forever. I trust him with anything.”

You saw the coming decline of radio, pinpointing the dreadful Communication Deregulation Act of 1996 as the beginning of the end. Stations were selling for 8x-10x cash flow. “All of a sudden it was 22x cash flow,” you revealed and said the math just didn’t work anymore. Emmis went public in 1994 and the stock price was $15.50. It went to a high of $124, split two for one. By 2009, the company was selling for 30 cents a share. “The bottom fell out.”
At the height of Emmis, you talked about the pride you had in your employees. They were able to buy options, send their kids to college and they bought homes. Your care for the people at Emmis (not only radio, but print, sports team and tv) seems to be grounded in the work ethics instilled by your parents while growing up in Indianapolis. “I knew what I wanted to do as a kid. I fell in love with the industry.”

You graduated near the top of your class at USC and then went on to earn a law degree.

By 1987 you were the largest independent group.

“We were really good at buying stations and figuring out what would work.” When you bought slick monthly magazines like AtlantaLos Angeles, and Indianapolis Monthly, you had a philosophy. Same thinking prevailed with the tv and radio stations. The new acquisitions were successful for a reason so instead of a wholesale housecleaning, you appreciated the staff and let them do what they did best with input and guidance from your team.

Chachi asked if there were similarities in the staffs of the tv, print and radio stations. Loved your recognition of the differences. “There were different sensibilities. One time our radio guys presented a bit they thought was hilarious. The magazine people thought it was disgraceful. The culture was the culture.”

At an industry conference you talked about other audio options but were quick to point out the economics. “We love Pandora. We made more money at Emmis before breakfast than Pandora made in the last twelve years.”
Thanks for the insight into how Power 106 came about. Your team had an idea for a station in L.A. that would attract young African Americans, bilingual assimilated Hispanics and hip white kids in the suburbs. But you first had a chance to hire Robert W. Morgan, an icon from an earlier era at 93/KHJ, and put him on “Magic 106,” KMGG. “We started with a 2.1 and a year and a half later we had a 1.9. It just didn’t go anywhere so we created Power 106 with Big Boy.”

You were generous in giving high praise to marketing and branding leader, Dianna Jason.” At your core is a belief in branding.

Chachi was most impressed when you talked about selling Power 106 to Meruelo a couple of years ago. When the deal was complete you came to LA, took all of the players to dinner and then presented each with a substantial check as a way of saying thank you. Now who does that these days?

Well, my love letter is almost finished, but there is so much more to your story. I want people to tune into the podcast for more, lots more. I want them to hear about your acquisition of the Seattle Mariners and New York powerhouses Hot 97 and WFAN.

Oh, and how about your breakfast with Bill Clinton that led to heading a White House delegation.

More? Your stories about taking your young daughter to school EVERY day and spending that 30 minutes telling her stories and life lessons. She encouraged you to write a book, which you have completed during the pandemic. Now we can only hope you decide to pursue publication. I’ll be the first, after Chachi, to purchase a book about lessons you’ve learned.

Kind regards, Don Barrett

Email Saturday, 6.13.2020

** 2 Minute Pledge

“Stick with it KROQ!” - Mike Butts

** 2 Minute Pledge Reminiscent

“SO! They’re giving you what KHJ did back in the 60’s?’ - Bill Schwarz, Ontario

** Commercial Load

“Ahhh, what goes around, comes around. When I walked into KLUC-Las Vegas the very first time, the owner said, ‘Don’t even talk to me about the spot load. We’ll never change it.’ Mind you, they were selling out the full legal 18 minutes [not units] per hour EVERY hour, plus adding whatever percentage of extra spots the FCC permitted at that time during political and holiday seasons. We eventually cut back to a maximum unit-per-hour limit which cleaned up the station greatly.” – Dave Anthony

** News/Talk Downturns

“Did you notice that the ratings for every single one of the news/talk stations were down during the last ratings period? Perhaps listeners are finally getting tired of constant coronavirus talk.

Also, I love KROQ’s promise of only 2-minute commercial breaks. But I would be curious to know how it pencils out financially for the station. I would think they would either have to have a lot more commercial breaks or charge more for their spots.” – Tom Burfield

** May ’20 Ratings

“Wow, KRTH really deserves the gold star. You really have to have your shit together to come up with numbers like that playing basically non-current music. It reminds me of WCCO-Minneapolis to this very day:  solid #1 impervious to competition no matter what that competition tries to do to unearth [pun intended] either one of them.” – Rich Brother Robbin

** Barberie Update

“Thanks for the update on Jillian Barberie’s [soon to be confirmed] clean bill of health. She was so generous in sharing her experience with listeners and keeping such a fantastic attitude that it was disconcerting when she left KABC and we stopped hearing how she’s doing. I hope some smart station adds this talented and hilarious talker to its lineup.

Hats off to you as well for writing so openly about your family and interesting career. There’s never a dull moment in DB-Land! – Dawna Kaufmann

** Tree Planter

“I read my essay on planting a tree. Thank you for using it. Somehow I think it would have helped. Eliminating racism is another story that is being approached world-wide and seems to have a good chance to be significantly reduced.” – Norm Epstein

** KNOB’s Slim Off

“Curious factoid about KNOB. In May 1985 KNOB had a contest based on who could best replicate the yodel in Slim Whitman’s version of Paloma Blanca, calling the contest a ‘Slim-off.’ The winner of KNOB's ‘Slim-off’ was someone named Vladimir, who still had a noticeable Russian accent, even when attempting to replicate Whitman's yodel.” – David Dana-Bashian

** On the Mark

“I’ve published a collection of ‘apocalypse poetry’ [as befits the end of the world] called Sunday Traffic Every Day. The cover is an original painting by my KNX colleague, Emily Valdez. It’s available here.

My short story collection, Nothing Tells You the Truth Like the Past is still available as well. If people thought my stories were weird, my poetry says, ‘Hold my beer.’ Also, I’m a science fiction character now! Sci-fi luminary David Gerrold, who wrote The Trouble With Tribbles for Star Trek, has a story called ‘Ronni & Rod’ in the latest issue of Asimov’s Magazine. The characters of Rod Archer and his wife Ronni are named after me and my wife, Ronnie Loaiza. Rod is a helicopter pilot/traffic reporter and Ronni is a newspaper reporter when a massive tsunami strikes Southern California and wipes out Comic Con. Read it here. Enjoy!” – Rob Archer

** Change Needed

“Maybe it’s time to haul out Sir Arthur Conan Doyle who said [through Sherlock Holmes] ‘eliminate the impossible and whatever remains, however improbable, has to be the truth.’ I admit it’s a tough starting point, but radio’s in such tough shape if the industry doesn’t get onto a solution pretty soon it’s toast. [I wanted to say ‘get our heads out of our asses’ but there are ladies present.]

I keep reading about the death of radio yet month after month, year after year, station after station, it’s the same ol’ shit over and over and over. In 1965 both KFWB and KRLA were hotter than hell in LA, unbeatable, right? Then here comes KHJ and virtually wipes ’em off the face of the earth in [forgive the pun] record time.

I don’t pretend to have the answer but I can say I remember the first half hour I heard on KHJ during its first month back in ‘65 and it just flat took my breath away. Talk about 100 miles an hour with their hair on fire without being irritating! I’d never heard anything even close.

Radio was snoozy when KHJ came on. Radio is snoozy now. Yeah, KHJ was 55 years ago which tells me we should be 55 years further along which right now we sure as hell ain’t. I have no answer for this, except for anyone that’s a got what they think is a good idea to share it somehow.

Grand slam creativity still exists so c’mon you young ones let’s pull your heads out and get busy before our great industry bites the big one!’ – Rich Brother Robbin

** Lisa Bowman a Sport

“I enjoyed reading your nice article about one of my favorite hires when I was the general manager at KABC, Lisa Bowman. After launching SportsTalk with Bud Furillo and Tom Hawkins I was trying to find a female to balance the program with Bud and Tommy. I remember designing posters with a silhouette of a female, and it went on an advertising campaign looking for a female to hire. You could not do that today because of the discrimination laws governing talent being hired.

Hundreds of women sent pictures and tapes and we indeed hired another woman whose name shall not appear in this column because, as Hawkins once said, diplomacy was not her strength. She was very talented, knew her sports, but was so disrespectful to me and our programming department that we fired her and hired Lisa Bowman. 

Lisa was and still is beautiful, but here again, beauty was not the main criteria for being hired as the third member of SportsTalk, which was the first 3-hour sports talk program in America. Lisa had and has a great personality and more than anything she wanted to learn about sports. She did just that and the program became one of the most listened to programs on radio in Los Angeles.

Bud Furillo and Tommy Hawkins have passed away but if they were here today they would be smiling while remembering all the fun that was had on Sportstalk.   

By the way, after reading your story on Lisa, I just called her. She has had the same cell phone for all these years. She has a running battle with cancer and is winning that battle. She lives in Arkansas with her husband Chuck Bowman. Her personality is still refreshing. She loves her life living in Arkansas and it was a joy seeing her picture and then talking to her.” – George Green

Leigh Ann Adam was a co-host with Charlie Tuna at KBIG and went on to KVIL-Dallas
In 1993 she was selected as one of the most beautiful women of Texas
for the "Women of Texas" calendar (she was November)

It's been a long, a long time coming
But I know a change's gonna come, oh, yes, it will
- Sam Cooke

(June 12, 2020) Virtually every sector of the pop culture landscape has been affected in the past two weeks, righting things that may be wrong. Is it time to do away with Gone With the Wind because it romanticizes the Confederacy? How about all the blaxploitation films of the seventies when most all the blacks played stereotypical pimps, drug dealers and prostitutes?

After three decades, Cops has been removed from the schedule, as protests nationwide call for police reform.

Even some cartoons will be altered. The new series Looney Tunes Cartoons on the recently-launched streaming platform HBO Max will be different. Elmer Fudd is still hunting wabbits, just without his signature firearm. In fact, the new series won't feature guns at all.

What’s next, radio? Should any radio guys have the nickname: Machine Gun, Shotgun, or Rifleman?

Hear Ache
. Jerry Lewine was admitted to City of Hope yesterday for his stem cell / bone marrow transplant. “It’ll be 7 days of chemo first then the transplant then I’ll be here for another couple weeks,” revealed Jerry … Mike Seeman sent a note about a reminder that LARP Mort Sahl turned 90 this week. “He frequently appears at the Throckmorton Theatre in Mill Valley,” wrote Seeman. Mort was heard on KLAC in 1967-68 …. Furloughed iHeart employees received notice that their furlough has been extended another 90 days. Apparently there’s not much conversation about the furloughs locally, but the fear at the iHeart suite in Burbank is the furloughed jobs are never coming back … In the mid-90s, the Baka Boyz ruled mornings at Power 106. They just signed a syndication deal with Compass Media Networks and Oceanic Tradewinds. No word if an LA station will carry Eric & Nick Vidal … Who owns the transcript of your podcast? … Entercom’s two-minute commercial max pledge announced for KROQ is appearing on other Entercom stations nationwide … Are concerns about the future of radio confined to the United States? Perhaps not. Here’s a link to a similar story from England. Read it here … Les Perry’s Saturday with the Beatles program has wrangled Ringo Starr into matching donations tomorrow at noon for the 88.5/fm fund drive … After a six-week medical leave, Brian Whitman has returned to the KRLA-870AM morning show this week. Brian and Jennifer Horn are back in their TMA studio with a Covid-19 plexiglass shield in between them. “Conversation starts, moves along, and there’s a moment that we both just know it’s going to a fun place,” Brian wrote on Facebook. “There’s a twinkle in her eye for sure, she definitely reads me like a book and we enjoy the ride.” … Getting enough movies during your time at home? Caught up with Almost Famous again. I had forgotten that the Fargo star and Oscar winner for Best Actress, Frances McDormand, played the mother of the teenager who got to write a cover story for Rolling Stone.

Job Opening. Do you have a passion for talk radio and social media? Dr. Laura Schlessinger has a unique opportunity for an assistant content producer. After a long run in LARadio, Dr. Laura took her popular program to SiriusXM. Job description and pay is outlined here

"While at my first radio job in Palm Springs (73-74), I played the part of a 'Student Announcer' for an episode of Happy Days,"
Mike Wagner, former program director at 1110/KRLA. "The casting director called me at KDES
(where I as earning $500/month as Midday Mike) and she said the part was mine! After 46 years, they ran it this week on ME TV!
I guess the residuals have run out! Student announcer Mike Wagner on right with Potsie and Ralph Malph
drawing the winner of a date with a Hollywood Movie Star (Cheryl Ladd) which was won by Richie Cunningham.
On the lot at Paramount. I arrived early. During make-up, Fonzie came in and shook my hand saying:
'Hi, my name is Henry.' Other than a quick run-thru, we did only a couple of takes. I quickly left and hit the road for Palm Springs
and didn’t see other members of the cast including Cheryl. Potsie was nice. Ralph didn’t speak to me."

A Surprise New Home for Lisa Bowman

(June 11, 2020) I heard about Lisa Bowman before I met her. She was the runner-up in a much-publicized talent search at KABC to find a woman to work with Bud Furillo and Tommy Hawkins on “Sports Talk.” The winner only lasted a month, was fired, and Lisa got the job.

The first time we met was at a Southern California Sports Broadcasters luncheon. She was surrounded by all the leading sports voices like Vin Scully and Stu Nahan. She had been president of SCSB and very well-liked. We have had subsequent lunches. I learned that her husband, Chuck Bowman was an acclaimed director and helmed many Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman episodes. And then, Lisa was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis.

When we got together or talked on the phone, she never complained. She is one of those rare spirits that takes the curve ball thrown at her and hits it out of the park.

On a recent social media post, Lisa indicated she was now living in Springdale, Arkansas. How in the heck did she get there?

“Northwest Arkansas is a region unto itself, and it’s experiencing hot growth,” emailed Lisa. “In the year we’ve lived here, our home’s value has increased by nearly $40,000. There is construction everywhere – I expect the area to look like LA in 20-25 years. But I’ll be gone by then, so it’s of no concern to me, although the loss of the area’s beauty will be tragic." (photo: Lisa enjoying a cappuccino at the train station in Florence. "My heart soars in Italy")
"Other than Trader Joe’s and See’s candy, everything one could want exists somewhere between Fayetteville and Bella Vista," Lisa continued. "Luckily, my 3 lbs. of See’s candy arrived yesterday, and we’re planning on visiting LA in July, so I’ll stock up again on things I want from Trader Joe’s. One can always make things work.”

Her husband is busy shooting mini-pilots for television and film pitches. “We’ve made wonderful friends here, and we enjoy the constantly-changing weather. Chuck and I spend a lot of time in the backyard because the three bird feeders and the bird bath we’ve installed make our yard ‘the’ place to be, if you’ve wings and a beak.”

Lisa is a published author. She’s rewriting stage of Book Two of her trilogy about Margaret, Queen of Scotland which will be titled, The Arrow that Flies by Day, and covers the Norman Conquest. Book One, which is already out, begins during her childhood in Hungary and ends in England. The first book is entitled  As the Deer Yearns for Running Streams. She claims she tried to come with a longer title, but couldn’t come up with anything else she liked. Book Three will be about Margaret’s reign as queen and her marriage to Malcolm III. She died in Edinburgh Castle in 1093.

 “A colleague of mine from the Huntington Library, The Very Reverend Canon John Crean, Ph.D. [I wish I had letters to put after my name ...] and I are collaborating on a prequel to Margaret’s life,” Lisa continued. “Let's just say that I've learned a lot about the 10th and 11th centuries. John and I are having a ball being writing partners. He’s written many textbooks, but never historical fiction, so he finds this process interesting. He just had a devotional book published, Recovering Benedict. He’s become a dear friend.”

It was great to hear from Lisa and catch up on all her activities. She’s touting Tim Madigan's book about Fred Claire’s journey with the Dodgers and with cancer. The net proceeds go to City of Hope.

“Fred got me in there during my second bout with cancer. I’ve been cancer-free now for about a year and a half. I went four and a half years between my first and second battles, so I’m hoping to make it at least that long before additional recurrences, if I wind up having any. I remain very optimistic.”

Virtual hugs, Lisa

Plant a Tree. Plant a Hope

Essay by Norm Epstein

(June 10, 2020) "With the riots and protests throughout America, I was reliving some thoughts I had during a similar time. Some years ago after the Rodney King riots, Peter Ueberroth was appointed by the Mayor to head a new program called Rebuild LA.

Since I had been on the 1984 Olympics Committee with Ueberroth, I was asked to give my support and input into this program. My proposal to the committee had in mind a rebuilding of each devastated community.

How do you do this? How can you create pride in living in these devastated areas?

One of the things I proposed was to take a page out of the rebuilding of Israel. How did they take a desert and make it bloom? My thoughts were to change the blight into an opportunity for pride and respect. Give each household a tree to plant in their front yard and have them take care of it.

Create green spaces for parks and recreation for the communities. With the blight being translated into more greenery then bring in major business and industry to partner with the communities and to hire locally.

This would create opportunities for growth, innovation and safety.

As Einstein once said, “Imagination is more important than information.”
For whatever reason, nothing was done nor did I get much feedback. Think of the blight and devastation in many of our cities like LA, Detroit, St. Louis, Philadelphia, Oakland, New Orleans and so many more.

Lots of BS talk but no real action. My thinking is not a utopia but the beginning of a journey to community health and welfare.”

(Norm Epstein is a former general manager at XTRA/KOST, KMPC, KLAC, KZLA, and owner of KPSA/KLVE)


“Political correctness is the death of comedy.” (Brian Whitman, 870AM/KRLA)

      *  “I have great coronavirus news.” (Shannon Farren, KFI)

      *  "If you can change one person’s mind, you can change the world.” (George Johns)

      *  “They’re not talking crowds or restaurants, nail salons should be one the easiest businesses to open and still maintain the rules.” (Bill Handel, KFI)

Hear Ache. After a six-week hiatus, Brian Whitman returns today to 870/The Answer mornings with Jennifer Horn … ABC colleagues are concerned about Ryan Seacrest’s health with one exec saying Ryan dreads leaving the Los Angeles area when Live with Kelly and Ryan returns to filming in its New York City studio, according to a Daily Mail source. Ryan denied suffering from a stroke after he was seen slurring his speech during the live American Idol finale last month. Sources claim he's looking to make some serious lifestyle changes. He’s reportedly looking to permanently return to California … Joe Rogan Experience was the most listened to podcast last week, according to Edison Research … Former KROQ and KLOS personality Larry Woodside said dating after 30 is like going to a thrift store and looking for the least damaged thing that doesn’t smell … Former KOSTer Bryan Simmons is headed to Mix 96.7 in Northeast Nevada … Michael Harrison interviews KRLA/870AM talk show host Larry Elder, this week on his podcast. ... Former KABC host Jillian Barberie was slated for her six-month post-chemo checkup with her oncologist. "Was supposed to be in March but Covid. Immediate bloodwork results were good now waiting for the big results Thursday along with scan. I feel good about this. I don’t think the cancer has spread one bit!" she wrote on Twitter.

K-EARTH Returns to Top of Ratings 


(June 9, 2020) KRTH is back on top of the monthly ratings in Los Angeles. The Classic Hits station scored a full point over #2 KFI. The iHeart Talk station fell almost a point (last month KFI was #1) in the May ’20 PPM ratings in the 6+ Mon-Sun, 6a-12mid standings. KIIS seems to be going in the wrong direction. The once powerful Top 40 station barely made the Top 10. Is the fact the morning man, Ryan Seacrest, broadcasts from New York and has difficult being relevant? Another possible explanation is offered by Pop Jocks, a Facebook group. They make note of that “only one or two top five markets had a Top 40/mainstream that broke into the Top 5, speculation being that young people under 25 are not listening to broadcast radio.” 

1. KRTH (Classic Hits) 5.2 - 5.6
2. KFI (Talk) 5.5 - 4.6
3. KBIG (Hot AC) 4.1 - 4.5
4. KTWV (Rhythmic AC) 4.5 - 4.3
5. KOST (AC) 4.5 - 4.2
6. KLOS (Classic Rock) 3.4 - 3.9
7. KCBS (JACK/fm) 3.5 - 3.6
8. KLAX (Regional Mexican) 3.4 - 3.4
9. KIIS (Top 40/M) 3.0 - 3.3
    KLVE (Spanish Contemporary) 4.2 - 3.3 

11. KKGO (Country) 2.7 - 3.2
12. KNX (News) 3.4 - 2.9
13. KRCD (Spanish Adult Hits) 2.5 - 2.7
14. KSCA (Regional Mexican) 2.6 - 2.6
15. KLYY (Spanish Adult Hits) 2.7 - 2.5
16. KYSR (Alternative) 2.2 - 2.4
17. KPWR (Top 40/R) 2.0 - 2.3
18. KBUE (Regional Mexican) 2.0 - 2.2
      KRRL (Urban) 1.8 - 2.2
     KXOL (Spanish AC) 1.9 - 2.2
21. KKLQ (Christian Contemporary) 2.0 - 1.9
      KUSC (Classical) 2.3 - 1.9
23. KFWB (Regional Mexican) 1.4 - 1.8
24. KAMP (Top 40/M) 1.3 - 1.7
       KPCC (News/Talk) 2.0 - 1.7
26. KCRW (Variety) 1.7 - 1.6

27. KJLH (Urban AC) 1.5 - 1.5
      KRLA (Talk) 1.8 - 1.5
29. KROQ (Alternative) 1.4 - 1.4
30. KDAY (Rhythmic AC) 1.2 - 1.3
      KLLI (Latin Urban) 1.0 - 1.3
      KWIZ (Spanish Variety) 1.3 - 1.3
33. KKJZ (Jazz) 1.3 - 1.2
34. KABC (Talk) 1.4 - 1.1
35. KEIB (Talk) 1.1 - 1.0
36. KFSH (Christian Contemporary) 1.1 - 0.9
37. KDLD (Regional Mexican) 0.9 - 0.7
      KKLA (Religious) 0.8 - 0.7
      KTNQ (Spanish Talk) 0.9 - 0.7
40. KLAC (Sports) 0.5  - 0.5

KROQ's 2 Minute Promise

Whether it’s YouTube, Instagram, and even radio, there is one thing in the way of getting what you want… too many &$^% ads! You want to hear more music and more from the KROQ personalities.

Well, we feel the same way. And we’re doing something about it.  Here’s what we came up with. You will never hear KROQ play more than 2 minutes of commercials at a time. That’s our promise. The 2 Minute Promise! We even made a handy FAQ. Everyone loves FAQ’s.

Q. Why did you decide to start the 2 Minute Promise? We asked you, the fans, to help us understand what would make KROQ a better station. The thing we kept hearing is we played too many commercials that seemed to go on forever. The two minute promise will fix that, playing fewer commercials overall and in shorter bursts. 

Q. So what does this mean for me? More music and less time away from your fave KROQ personalities (and even your not so favorite like Stryker and Klein). The 2 Minute Promise gives us more time to play the artists you love, expose more new music and to focus on what’s happening in the KROQ community.

Q. Why do you have to stop the music AT ALL? Can’t you just get it all over with at one time at like 3am and then play music all day? Welllllll…. you told us short commercial breaks are easier to sit through. This will still let us stay friends with the kind folks who sponsor us. They are going to be the ones who make it possible for us to play WAY less commercials than any other station in LA plays.

Q. Alright. That sounds pretty sweet actually. But wait…if you cut back on commercials, does this mean you’ll cut back on other thing too? Shows? DJ’s? Nope. The only thing we are ditching is all the extra ads. You’ll get less of em, in shorter breaks which means more music for you. You favorite KROQ artists are still here along with all of the KROQ personalities who will continue to curate and share new music for you to discover. So let’s do this 2 Minute Promise!
Listen now on the RADIO.COM app.

  Is Any Publicity Good Publicity? 

(June 8, 2020) The saying ‘any publicity is good publicity’ or ‘there’s no such thing as bad publicity’ is said to emphasize it is better to receive bad publicity than no publicity at all. The phrase is rumored to have first been said in the 19th century by American showman and circus owner P. T. Barnum. But is it still the case? 

Recently Entercom/LA recently sat with Variety to discuss the challenges facing KROQ. In the last year, the ratings for the iconic Alternative and once ground-breaking station were hardly hearty. When dismissing personalities – including some longtime veterans –  the company seemed to be missing a heart, which caused much head-scratching with those remaining with the station. The Variety story was co-authored by Michael Schneider. The resultant headline to the story was hardly what Entercom was expecting - It’s the End of the World Famous KROQ as We Know It. 

Advertising revenues were already challenged by COVID-19 and then civil unrest. This is hardly what advertisers, usually resistant to anything controversial or negative, want to hear. The Variety story was wildly circulated throughout the country. Listeners to KCRW and Madeleine Brand’s Press/Play got an audio version of KROQ’s plight when Brand devoted an entire segment on her program to an interview with Variety’s senior editor Schneider.
“Listeners worry that the new management has taken the rock out of K-ROQ,” said Brand in her introduction. “Since firing Kevin Ryder, the station has lost about half its listenership.”

Schneider believes that KROQ is a victim of its own success. He told Brand: “For the past couple of decades, the station has been important for breaking some of the major Alternative groups of all-time, like Nirvana and Coldplay.” For many years, Kevin & Bean delivered the lion’s share of the KROQ ratings. But when Entercom bought CBS Radio three years ago they wanted to “rejigger” the station. “The station did need to freshen up,” said Schneider. “You can’t play the same five Red Hot Chili Peppers’ songs forever.”

During his final sign-off from the air, Ryder said that Entercom was part of the corporatization of radio, “They weren’t here for the building of the world-famous KROQ. I don’t think it means anything to them. It’s a numbers business, and there’s no family aspect to it anymore. It’s only numbers. But this place was built without numbers. It was musicians, artists, music, the special relationship between the music, the station and our fans.”

Said Schneider: “KROQ now has a much larger road to take before it wins back its loyal audience and even begins to attract a new audience. This is an ongoing story in radio. One day you show up and there’s a whole new format, or there are brand new djs. They never explain it. There is this need to rip the band-aid off now, quickly change a format, or quickly get rid of a host without really thinking this through.”

Brand said KROQ was a huge part of her youth listening to Rodney on the ROQ and Richard Blade. “I have to confess I haven’t listened in a while because they were no longer groundbreaking anymore.” 
KNOB Owner Dies. Jack Banoczi, co-owner of KNOB with his wife Jeannette, passed away on May 22 in Palm Desert of natural causes.

He was born in Cleveland on June 18, 1935. Jack served in the U.S. Navy from 1954 – 56 attaining the rank of Petty Officer 3rd Class. He settled in Southern California in 1958 and attended Santa Monica City College.

In 1960, Jack married Jeannette Pennino and enjoyed over 50 years of marriage. In his younger years, Jack learned to play clarinet and tenor sax. Later in 1958, he formed the “Jack Banet Orchestra,” providing entertainment for numerous dances throughout Southern California until 1980.

In 1961, Jack became the general manager/co-owner of radio station KGGK/fm in Garden Grove. Then in 1966, he became the gm and co-owner of KNOB/fm-Long Beach. Jack and Jeanette sold the station in 1987 for $15 million. In 1970, he added KXTZ-Las Vegas to his list followed by KCKC/AM and KBON/fm-San Bernardino in 1985. Jack’s broadcast career ended in 1989 with his acquisition of KUNA / KESQ Radio in Palm Desert which he ran for almost 10 years. Jack was also an active HAM radio operator (wb6gds) from 1962-69 and a licensed private pilot. He was both an avid golfer and crocheter. Funeral arrangements have not yet been announced.
KOCM, Newport Beach ad in the LA Times, Monday, June 8th, 1970
from David Grudt's collection

Email Saturday, 6.6.20

** Potpourri Satisfying

“What an enjoyable Friday column, Don. Very satisfying – a full meal for the reader.

From my own experience, I know that it sure helps to have interesting material to work with, and you had plenty, starting with Joe Rogan’s pact with Spotify [Even at $100M, did he leave money on the table?].

You also shared John Leader's clarification about the origins of R&R. As it happens, the last publication date of L.A.-based Radio & Records was exactly 11 years ago yesterday – June 5, 2009. Its passing left a still-felt hole in the landscape.

FYI, David Gleason’s encyclopedic ‘World Radio History’ site [formerly American Radio History] offers almost every issue of R&R back to October 5, 1973. That includes the final issue, and the farewell letter from then-owner Nielsen. To do a little time-traveling, the R&R section of World Radio History is here.” – Tom Taylor (retired, but still watching from the socially-distanced bleacher seats)

** Great Broadcast Journalist

“I’m shocked over CBS Radio News firing Jim Chenevey! Jim is the epitome of a great broadcast journalist. He’s a highly skilled network radio anchor. One of the all-time best!” – Bob Sirkin

** End of Radio?

“Geesus, I read about the firings at KLOS and wonder if what we’re hearing is the footsteps of radio as we know it making a slow exit. Sounds to me like it’s just possible the industry’s lights are slowly going out one at a time leading to darkness.” – Rich Brother Robbin

** Radio Dead?

“In reading about the latest radio bloodbath – this time at KLOS – radio, as we loved it, is officially dead! You can quote me.” – Jeffrey Leonard

** Left KLOS When Jim Ladd Left

“KLOS has been dead to me since they fired Jim Ladd several years ago. That said, I feel badly for these folks. Who is even left there now?

I only listen to Sirius/XM radio now.” – Bob Whitmore

** Terry Nelson Memories

“I’m sure saddened to hear of the passing of Terry Nelson. He shared so much genuine love and happiness with his listeners, fans, family, friends, and those of us that worked with him. He first brought me to Sacramento in 1980. I was young and had never experienced anyone quite like Terry. Our lineup was Terry, Bryan Simmons, myself and Jeff Hunter. 

We all had a blast, and I learned so much to take with me on my radio journey throughout California! Thank you deeply Terry for your mentorship and friendship over the years. You’re one of a kind!” – C.J. Stone

** Levine’s Legacy

“KBCA was one of my favorite stations in the sixties. I enjoyed the blurb that was provided by Saul Levine.

Attached, you will find a picture and article from 1964 when he donated an antenna and transmitter to KEDC.” – Tony Morton

 ** Uncle Tea?

“I was trying to find information about a local LA dj from the early 1970s who called himself ‘T’ or ‘Uncle Tea.’ I can't remember what station he was on but as I recall it was either Progressive or Album Rock.” – Harley Lond,

** Termination Essay

“I’ve lost track of the times I have been out of work at radio stations. Some could be called ‘downsizing,’ some ‘format change,’ and some because I had never been able to suffer fools gladly or otherwise. My lack of tolerance for idiots has mellowed somewhat over the years, but as I mentioned in my memoir, But First This Message, my big mouth got me into a lot of trouble. I should have bought stock in U-Haul. Instead I invested it – in blondes, brunettes, and redheads.

Alan Chlowitz once told the K-Earth sales manager he had come close to firing me many times. When I resigned he pleaded with me to stay.” – Steve Fredericks Liddick

** Hey, Sport

“A very sad week in our world and our sports world with the pandemic and the protests over the Minneapolis murder.

In sports, June 3 was the fourth anniversary of the death of the Greatest in Muhammed Ali, a man who gave up everything for what he believed.

June 4 was the tenth year without John Robert Wooden, the greatest coach in modern sports. Life and sports go on, but never quite the same.” – Fred Wallin, Westlake Village
** Missed Bain

“I’m sorry that my path never crossed with Jim Bain’s, the timing was off at Fullerton College and KEZY, but thanks for the tribute.

I headed over to Fullerton College recently with another radio guy, Richard Barsh. This is where we met and it was our first attempt to do a radio show. He received an F on a show because when we ran out of material, I improvised and he responded with something the teacher did not like, something he said was ‘untrue.’ It was funny. SORRY! Did not realize radio was not supposed to be entertaining.” – Mike Ritto

** Classical Gas

Laura Brodian’s reminiscing reminded me of a parallel situation early in my career. I started in 1973 at KOVA/105.5 [now KFYV] in Ojai the summer before my senior year of high school, working a nine-hour shift on Saturdays. The last four hours of my shift was as board operator [although we used the lofty title of ‘producer’ at the end of the show to identify some of a Classical program that aired in that time slot every night but Sundays.

The program was voicetracked on tape by station owner Fred Hall, who also launched his small syndication effort from KOVA with his Big Band program ‘Swing Thing,’ the live version of which preceded me in middays. It seems I had a knack for it, because Fred told me that I did a much better job of eliminating background ‘clunks,’ etc. than the weeknight producer. [All I did was add a lot of dead air, backcue the records a full turn so I could start them with the pot down and bring the level up before the first note ... but apparently those little details mattered.]

In June of 1974, he had me replace the weeknight producer as the latter moved up to a day shift. I had the distinction of being the longest-tenured producer in the program’s history, remaining until the fall of 1977 when I moved on to bigger stations in the market.

Here is where Laura triggered my memory: When Fred went on vacation every year, he would record the voicetracks for the entire two weeks of ‘Great Music to Midnight’ on a single 10-inch reel. And like my first summer in 1973, that was the case in 1974. Come 1975, I walked in on the first Monday of his vacation to find the reel totally blank. [In fact, I think the end was still taped down ... it had never been racked up in the first place.] So I proceeded to do the program live from the board and recorded Saturday’s voicetracks on Friday. All went fairly well: I just started and ended every evening with a mention of Fred being on vacation.

Came Friday of week two. Fred got back into town that evening and naturally turned on his stereo while he unloaded the car. Eventually, of course, came the end of whatever had been playing, and my voice rather than his on the back-announce. During the subsequent commercial, he called practically screaming ‘WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU DOING?’ to which I calmly asked if he had forgotten to do anything before he left on vacation.

Dead silence, followed by quietly hanging up. He called back after I pre-announced the next selection, much calmer, and told me I sounded just fine. I replied that after hearing him do the program for two years I knew the proper pronunciation of every composer, conductor, etc. in the library and all I did then was emulate his usual tone of voice and pacing.

In the summers of 1976 and 1977, he simply went on vacation and added a note in the printed program guide that I was guest hosting those two weeks. I also ‘hosted’ the abbreviated editions in the fall of 1975 and 1976 that followed Nordhoff High School football games on Friday nights, and the occasional day or two if he had a cold and his voice was off. I now wonder if I might have been the youngest radio announcer [age 19 in 1975] to do a Classical format.” – K.M. Richards

** Touched by Wooden

“I had the honor of meeting and hearing the great John Wooden in 1981. He was the guest speaker at the monthly meeting of the LA Life Underwriters Association. The Biltmore was packed for him and we were all in total awe of this great man. After his talk, I approached him, shook his hand and told him what an honor it was to meet and listen to him speak. He was so humble that you’d have thought he’d never heard that before and sincerely thanked me. I will never forget that moment.” – Bob Whitmore 

** We Could Use Wooden’s Words

“I had tears in my eyes when I read Dan Avey's Rememberance of Coach Wooden. I never had the pleasure of meeting this good man but I’ve watched various talks he’s given on tv and read of his goodness in several autobiographies. It was wonderful to hear of how he touched someone's life and we could sure use his words now!” – Julie T. Byers

**Greasiest Hits on Earth

“Another fond memory when I was general manager of K-EARTH, I’d drive home from LA to Westlake Village, I’d stop in this dive bar on Topanga Canyon, The Candy Canyon, and bum a cigarette off Bill Drake and have a drink. That was his office.

He’d write down liners on a bar napkin and I’d take them in. Charlie Van Dyke would record them and they would be on the air by the afternoon. Still remember the huge timpani crescendo to ‘The Greasiest Hits on Earth.’” – Pat Duffy

Is Joe Rogan the New Howard Stern?

(June 5, 2020) Joe Rogan is a comedian, actor, sports commentator, martial artist, and television host. He made headlines recently when Spotify picked up his podcast, The Joe Rogan Experience, for an estimated $100 million a year. As LARP struggle to launch podcasts and then find a way to attract advertisers, Rogan’s deal is a real head scratcher.

But some think the money is a far cry from what he could have earned. If Joe Rogan is a name you are unfamiliar with, Google him and listen to a free podcast (before he moves to Spotify).

He may be the new Howard Stern. Going to Spotify comes with a risk for Rogan. An estimated 8% of all Canadians listened to Joe in the past month, which is an audience the size of Vancouver. Research says 18% will continue to listen, and 23% will stop altogether. One blogger, Laptop Capri, says he could have gotten much more money going in a different direction.

The site made an analogy of the farmers who don’t realize they are sitting on tens of millions of dollars of oil, so they accept a $50,000 one-time payment. The blogger cites how Howard Stern is getting ripped off by Sirius. “He may make $90 million a year but could be making 2-3x by cutting out the middle-man and doing a subscription podcast,” cites Laptop Capri.

If the numbers are to be believed Rogan, arguably with the largest podcast audience in the world, could have gotten $3 billion. Rogan’s listeners can still access the podcast for free—as long as they use Spotify. Spotify premium subscribers get the podcast without ads, but free users will have to listen to ads (presumably sold by Spotify).

By doing this deal, Rogan gives up control over his subscriber relationship, claims Capri in his blogger. Any new audience he builds from here on out, Rogan loses. His existing podcast feed will likely die as most people eventually unsubscribe due to inactivity. It’s like Disney licensing their Disney+ content to Netflix. It might net a big one-time payout, but it completely erodes the business value that would otherwise accrue to them.

Joe Rogan is the new Howard Stern, according to another blogger. His audience is 10-12x larger than Stern’s, and Sirius makes an estimated $290 million in revenue from selling subscriptions to Stern. Because of the subscription plan to access Stern, the blogger maintains that young people have no idea who he is. “Stern has lost his impact on culture in exchange for a big upfront payment,” said Laptop Capri.

Here’s a link if you want to delve deeper into the subject

R&RJohn Leader was one of many who emailed to correct an assertion that Robert Kardashian founded the trade publication Radio & Records. The Kardashian brothers, Robert and Tom, financed the launch and were Bob Wilson’s financial partners. But the publication was founded by Bob Wilson. “So, it could be said that Bob Kardashian ‘funded’ R&R,” emailed Leader.

“Bob Kardashian, who passed away several years ago, eventually became active in the business of R&R, and was one of the nicest people on the planet,” said John. “As an 11-year employee of R&R, I can say with some authority that the publication was one of the most successful trades of all time. The scope and diversity of information presented each and every week was far beyond what came before or has since followed. It was a classic case of a great idea presented at the perfectly receptive time.”

Thanks to Bob Wilson.

Hear Ache. Rhapsody in Black host Bill Gardner turns 82 this week. “We will celebrate with a pastrami sandwich at Langer's when this nightmare is over,” said Bill … Didja know when KABC morning drive veteran Ken Minyard retired in the fall of 2004, Doug McIntyre was promoted to morning drive? … Julie Byers loves the one-liners at JACK/fm. This week she heard: “Playing what we want; Joel Grover investigates on the Channel 4 News!" …Condolences to former KTWV personality Marina Wilson on the loss of her mother. “With the help of a miracle and a very nice City Council member and the hospital, I was able to go along with my brother, be with my mom and visit her for the two weeks in the hospital,” Marina wrote on Facebook … Former KABC personality and Fox News host Sean Hannity and his wife, Jill Rhodes, have divorced after more than 20 years of marriage, according to the New York Post … Former K-EARTHer Christina Kelley was thrilled that the Wall Street Journal quoted her about the state of baseball … Jim Dawson reports sad news that LA doo-wop pioneer Gaynel Hodge has died. He co-wrote Earth Angel, played piano on the Rivingtons’ Papa-Ooh-Mow-Mow, and led various 1950s doo-wop groups like the Hollywood Flames and the Turks. Jim said that Gaynel is the last of the great Los Angeles R&B voices … It was June 2012 when Frosty Stilwell, part of the long-running Frosty/Heidi & Frank triumverate at KLSX, KABC and KLOS, joined KI0I (Star 101.3)-San Francisco as half of “The Sandy and Frosty Show” in morning drive ... Dunno if it is only me, but my nose doesn't itch until I put the mask on.


Remembering Coach John Wooden
By Dan Avey

I have known Coach Wooden since 1992.  I met him when I sent a letter to UCLA asking if it were possible for Coach Wooden to autograph a basketball for a silent auction at my daughter’s grade school. About a week later I got a call at home. It was John Wooden! He said he would be glad to sign the ball and why didn’t I bring one over to his home in Encino. I picked myself up off the floor and said “Sure” and headed for the car. 

That’s the way John Wooden was. No pretention, no fuss, tell the truth, don’t complain, don’t make excuses. I cherished the time I spent with him, either sitting in his den and talking, or taking him to lunch. (He ate at the same deli every day, always ordered soup and salad with extra crackers.) People, mostly former players, lined up for the privilege of taking Coach to breakfast or lunch.

About five years ago I made a lunch date with him for a Tuesday the next week. Then, I forgot. Really forgot. It didn’t cross my mind until the day after that I had stood him up.  I rushed over to his home to apologize and he pooh-poohed the incident, saying he, of course, accepted my apology and that would be the end of it. He did have a kind of twinkle in his eye. When the word got out in the LA sports community about what I had done, I was labeled “the Man Who Starved John Wooden.” He laughed when he heard that. 

In the mid 2000s I tagged along to a sports banquet where Pete Carroll and John Wooden would both be on the dais. Pete was really excited to meet Coach Wooden. He scooted his chair over before the event and asked Wooden for advice about being a consistently successful coach. Wooden told Carroll “Your teams will change every year but you cannot. You must be the unchanging standard.” He added “Don’t treat your players all the same. It is not possible. You’ll like some better than others just as you like some of your friends better than others. Tell your players you will treat them with the respect they have earned.” 

Carroll asked Coach who he confided in when he had a player problem. “Oh, said Wooden, I’d turn it over to my best friend – the bench. “ 

Of course I introduced my two young daughters to Coach, and he said they were always welcome to come over. They had no idea who he was but they listened closely when he spoke or told stories about his children, grandchildren and great grandchildren. 

In 2000, when my daughter Alexandra was nine, I was coaching her team in a Parks and Rec league in Encino. After one Saturday game we went over to Coach’s and he posed for a picture with her in her uniform. Later, I mailed him an 8 X 10 copy and asked him to sign it. (Photo: Jenny Avey with Coach Wooden)

He did. It says “Thank you, Ally, for being photographed with me. Best wishes and love, John Wooden, UCLA” 

That is how I will always remember him. 

When You Have to End Someone’s Employment
Essay by Guy Heston

(June 4, 2020) So many LARPs and broadcast professionals across the nation are losing their jobs. To those of you who have been “let go,” including the latest at KLOS, may I offer my heartfelt sympathy and sincere hope you find exciting new pages in the stories of your lives. To those managers who are having to let staff members know they are being let go, may I offer some advice about how to do it in a way that respects the dignity and value of your employees.

I was let go several times during my stint as an LARP. The first was at KWIZ, when I got back from vacation and received a Sunday morning phone call at home that I need not report for work in the KWIZ newsroom on Monday. All I could do was pull out the phone book, look up the nearest unemployment office, and worry about how I would make next month’s rent.

The second time was at The Programme Shoppe in North Hollywood, where I was writing the syndicated radio program “Record Report.” There was some kind of kerfuffle between the executive producer and management, which I knew nothing about and had nothing to do with. Even so I was summarily ordered out of the building. Time to worry about the rent again.
The final time I was working at Filmways Radio in Hollywood and called into the office of the company’s president, Gary Standard. I could see this one coming, as it was apparent there was more cash going out than coming in. Mr. Standard was very kind but beating around the bush. So I finally interrupted him and said something along the lines of: “So what you want to tell me is that I’m being let go and you appreciate my service, is that right?” He breathed a huge sigh of relief and said that’s right. I went downstairs to turn in my office key and leave the premises.

By this time I had wised up and stashed some savings to pay the rent. I learned from these experiences, how it feels to be let go and shown the door. No matter how you are informed and whatever platitudes you are offered, at the end of the day you are out of work. It’s a lousy feeling.

Later in my career I had to let people go for various reasons. And I followed these guidelines, which I now offer to broadcast managers who have to do the same: 

Do it in person (or in the current environment perhaps Facetime or Zoom).  As uncomfortable as it might be for you, look your employee in the eyes and try to understand their pain. Emails, texts, etc. in this situation are demeaning. Before you meet, spend a moment thinking about your employee’s family.

Do it at the end of the day, so your employee can at least feel that they put it in a good shift. If possible, after you deliver the bad news, leave the room and give your employee a few minutes to compose themselves. Yes, a little crying by them in private might be in order. Leave a box of tissue paper in the room.

Keep it brief. It’s ok to say thank you and we’re sorry, but spare them a long speech. Get to the point. They know what’s happening.

If you have one, make sure you refer your employee to your Employee Assistance Program for counseling, job resources and such. And also COBRA and other health care resources. If you don’t have an EAP, at least give them a list of non-profit resources that might help.

Unless they have stolen from you, do not have them escorted out by security. Give them the opportunity to take their personal belongings from their workspace and to speak with other employees. The other employees are, by the way, watching, and this is your opportunity to show that you are treating people with respect under difficult circumstances. For goodness sakes, let them say good-bye to their teammates!

Think about you and your family. If you were being let go, how would you like to be treated? Act accordingly.

(Guy Heston graduated from the radio/tv program at Cal State Long Beach in 1973. In the seventies he worked at KNAC, KWIZ, The Programme Shoppe, Filmways Radio and the Record Report.  He spent 30 years at Long Beach Transit, much of that time as chief operating officer. He is now retired and living in Las Vegas.) 

Jim Bain, OC Radio Talent and Professor, Dies 

(June 3, 2020) Jim Bain, a veteran of KWIZ (1965-69, 1974-79 and 1981-85), KIQQ (1973), and KEZY (1988), has died. He was 82.

Jim was a great example that you can do anything you want to, as long as you are willing to pay the price. He turned his love for radio into a career of inspiring young people by teaching at Fullerton College and running its fm station. He started a comprehensive program at Fullerton in 1981 and realized that he needed to enlarge his own academics. While running the program, he worked weekends at KWIZ and Unistar’s AM Only channel AND went back to school. From 1969 to 1973, Jim was “the Mighty Quinn” on KMEN-San Bernardino.

He received a B.A. degree in business management from the University of Redlands in 1988 at the age of 50 and didn’t stop there. Three years later he received his M.S. degree in career and college counseling. His students filled 27 shifts per week on KBPK-Fullerton. His vocational advisory committee includes some of the most respected names currently working in Southern California radio.

Jim talked about his love for radio: “This wonderful, sometimes frustrating business, ever challenging but the greatest of all industries and definitely the mistress that owns us all – radio.”
Covering the RiotsTALKERS Magazine published an internal memo from KFI pd Robin Bertolucci that provides some insight about the station and current events:

“I want to remind everyone that as this situation unfolds, we are in NEWS mode. This goes for all shows, news or talk. This is the time to tell people what’s happening and explain all the sides of the story. This is a dynamic situation and we need to cover it clearly, first and foremost. We should try to refrain from drawing grand conclusions, making pronouncements or adding to the overall tension and confusion. The tone is INFORMATION and CLARITY. There are many different factions at play in this story... business owners, Antifa, police, looters, the National Guard, and let’s not forget the original focus of this… the protest about race and police brutality that launched this moment in history. This has become something very different and awful, but we need to stop talking about this as if it’s an us / them situation. We are all part of the same community and we need to find a way to talk about what is going on. Let’s get the whole story and let’s talk to different members of our community. No, I’m not condoning any bit of this horror show but I am asking us not to simplify this, not to paint everyone with the same broad brush and to find the nuances and tell the stories.”

Anchor Overboard. Anchor/correspondent Jim Chenevey has been with CBS News Radio since 1988. Yesterday he was let go. I asked Jim if there was any indication the termination was coming. “It was out of the blue,” emailed Jim. “I was one of 75 in the news division and some 400 company-wide. Glad I’m AFTRA!”

In addition to his anchoring duties, he reported on a number of major stories ranging from the release of South Africa’s Nelson Mandela to the 1998 Winter Olympics in Nagano, Japan. Chenevey was part of the Peabody Award-winning coverage of “China in Crisis” in 1989.

Jim was part of the morning team at KKHR and the format/call letter switch to KNX/fm. He was also news and community affairs director and hosted a weekend public affairs program called “Free Form.” Prior to joining L.A.’s CBS O&O, Jim worked at WHYT-Detroit, WGAR-Cleveland, KIMN-Denver and WFMJ/TV-Youngstown, Ohio. He is a Kent State alumnus.

Hear AcheNeil Ross is reprising his role as announcer for Season 2 of Press Your Luck, starring Elizabeth Banks. “I'm also the voice of the iconic WHAMMY” … Didja know that Steve Edwards used to be a correspondent for Entertainment Tonight? …. Mookie, pd at 88.5 (KCSN), sent a note about his playlist. “You’ll be hearing many positive messages on the air this week. Songs of love, hope and solidarity.” ... Condolences to Mark Driscoll on the passing of his mother.

Pardue Parts with KPCCRita Pardue, a 14-year veteran at news/talk KPCC has accepted a buy-out and will devote her full time to her production company, Angel Wings Productions. She launched the company in 2004 to help non-profit ministries with their audio production.

Her supervisor at KPCC, Doug Gerry, sent a warm note about Rita:

Dear Colleagues, As some of you have heard by now, Rita Pardue accepted the SCPR buyout offer and will be leaving us this week. Rita has been a valuable and talented voiceover production employee since 2006. During her time here, she has produced over 10,000 promotional and underwriting spots for us! Her professional VO work and ability to turn out large volumes of high-quality spots will be missed, especially when those ASAP requests come in late in the day.

Rita also has been a member of the KPCC Quality of Life Team, helping to improve the professional work/life experience for all of us. Thank you for your service, Rita! We wish you all the best and continued success working with your company, Angel Wings Productions, and in your new role as a soon-to-be grandparent.

KPCC Reporter Hit by Rubber Bullet While Covering Protests

(June 2, 2020) The violence seen in Southern California the past few days has hit home within radio newsrooms. KPCC’s Adolfo Guzman-Lopez was shot in the throat with a rubber bullet by Long Beach police officers while covering the protests emanating from the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis.

Under the law, reporters are specifically allowed access to protests in order to do their jobs. Prior to sending reporters into the field, KPCC had confirmed with officials from L.A. County and the cities of Long Beach, Los Angeles and Santa Monica that journalists were among those exempt from the curfew. Late Sunday afternoon, Adolfo posted his first tweet: “I just got hit by a rubber bullet near the bottom of my throat. I had just interviewed a man with my phone at 3rd and Pine and a police officer aimed and shot me in the throat, I saw the bullet bounce onto the street. OK, that’s one way to stop me, for a while.”

His next tweet described the pain he was experiencing: “The rubber bullet hit stings like a mf, and is starting to hurt, talked to doctor friends, said if not having trouble breathing then ok. Going home."

After visiting the ER: “The ER doctor said the rubber bullet didn’t do damage to my wind pipe. I can breathe. I’ll be chillin’ with the family and thinking about love, compassion, and healing.”

Chris Little
, KFI news director is also President of the Radio and Television News Association (RTNA) of Southern California. He sent out the following letter to the membership:

Dear members of the press: Over the weekend, a Long Beach police officer shot KPCC reporter Aldofo Guzman-Lopez in the throat with a rubber bullet (he’s ok). We’re trying to determine whether Guzman-Lopez was targeted, since he was standing off to the side of the protest, wearing his lanyard, and had just interviewed someone with his iPhone.

Two other KPCC reporters,
Emily Guerin and Chava Sanchez, encountered officers while they were making their way through an alley in Santa Monica. They raised their hands and yelled out that they were press, but one officer pointed his rifle at them anyway. (He was riding in a Sheriff’s truck, but we are trying to determine whether he was Santa Monica PD.) Guerin and Sanchez took off in the other direction without incident.

We’d like to know whether any of your reporters have experienced any issues with law enforcement while covering the protests. Please reach out to RTNA Executive Director Maydie Encinas at  Thank you, Chris Little President / RTNA

KLOS Loss. There were other major stories about radio breaking yesterday. Gary Moore (l), one of the nicest guys and most talented in the business, was let go in the KLOS bloodbath. “After playing on the 95.5 KLOS team for some 22 seasons, I’ve been granted free agency!  Working at such a legendary rock behemoth with 6 pds, 7 gms and THE finest radio pros a guy could ever hope to meet has been the time of my life – so far.  But there’s still a lotta high octane in the tank – upward & onward!  Derby City looks mighty nice this time of year.” Gary is fielding your calls and emails: (310) 801-4279

There were more high profile personalities lost in the bloodbath. “Frosty Stilwell has been let go permanently,” said Frank Kramer on Monday morning during his KLOS morning show with Heidi Hamilton. Frosty joined Heidi and Frank at KLOS four years ago. But there were more. “A lot of people let go around here,” said Kramer. “A lot of people have been asked to make major lifestyle sacrifices just to keep the lights on.” Frank said he did his best to keep everything the same, keeping it normal, “but that was not going to happen. Management decided to go in a different direction. Who knows what they will decide tomorrow. It’s not something that seems to be consistent but I guess we will have to wait and see.”

Frosty wrote on Facebook: “It is now the Heidi & Frank Show, and I hope you will continue to give them your support. Don’t blame them, they had no say in this. Some of my best friends are in that room and I only wish everyone remaining on the show the best going forward.” He continued: “Apparently management's budget-cutting axe swinging also cut several others and perhaps I should feel honored to be in the same company of executed LA radio legends Gary Moore, Jim ‘JD’ DanielsSteve ‘Jonesy’s Jukebox’ Jones, and Frazer Smith (mornings at KLOS before Mark & Brian) and Anthony was also cut from the morning show.” Nighttimer Greg Beharrell was also let go.

 Many of those responding to the news on Facebook have been fans of The Triplets since KLSX days twenty years ago. “I hope you understand there was nothing I could do about this,” wrote Frosty. “So like it or not, I am off the team. I will have more to say later. But just not right now.” Listener David Munoz wrote to Frosty on Facebook: “So sorry you got let go Frosty. Thank you for making me laugh and putting a smile on my face when I drove into work. It was better than any cup of coffee I’ve ever had. God bless you Frosty and may God always look over you and Denver Dog as you turn a page in your book of life.”

Hear Ache. Power 106 morning man Nick Cannon decided he had to go to Minneapolis. He told Variety:  “I needed to be right there on 38th Street and Chicago where George Floyd’s life was tragically stolen from him. People are searching for a new normal. I don’t want to go back to our old normal — clearly that was killing us on many levels. What we need is a new normal, a new paradigm” … Adam Carolla took to Zoom last night for his popular tour show Adam Corolla is Unprepared … KFI newsman Kris Ankarlo’s experienced having his tires slashed over the weekend. “I’ve only got one full-size spare. Those were new tires too,” he wrote on Facebook. His boss, Chris Little, suggested that it comes with driving a SUV that looks like a police vehicle  … KROQ’s Kat Corbett was going on air Sunday when she wrote: “My job is to be upbeat on-air, but with what’s going on right now that’s not where my heart is. KROQ is a music station, not talk or news. I’ll play music and do my thing, but my thoughts are with the folks dealing with the incredible bullshit of racism. My neighborhood is destroyed. Everyone is talking about the looting. Protesters’ message is lost in the damage. To be clear, there were two parties yesterday. Protesters and those who came to loot and destroy. Don’t confuse the two.” … Former KOSTer Ira David Sternberg covers all things Las Vegas and wonders, once the craps games open, can the shooter blow on the dice?

With Morning Rush, The Poorman is Out of Limbo

(June 1, 2020) Southern Californians have seen and heard Jim Trenton for years, albeit more likely by his moniker The Poorman. From his days at KROQ including Loveline, being a regular on Rick Dees’ KIIS/fm morning show, even a year long stint doing nights at hip hop giant Power 106 (KPWR), Poorman’s Bikini Beach on tv, plus a longtime Internet presence, Poorman has always found a loyal audience.

Now he’s back on the radio, hosting Poorman’s Morning Rush weekday mornings from 7 – 10 a.m. on KOCI-Newport Beach. A friend suggested he call the station to see if they needed a surf reporter. “I called (KOCI ceo) Brent Kahlen, a great businessman and radio junkie who himself used to be a featured KROQ jock before they were ‘ROQ of the 80s.’ I went over to provide a surf report, and the next thing I know I’m doing mornings!”

It all began April 1, 2019. The station has a format of “deep cut” Classic Rock. Poorman takes his show a step further, terming it “progressive Classic Rock,” but he admits that’s not quite accurate. “My show begins with a blank easel every morning, I can play whatever I want. I often start off with a music theme – your favorite female artist, a song you’re secretly a fan of but afraid to admit, your original and favorite cover record, and so on.”

Eclectic is an inadequate adjective. “People now have the Internet, they don’t want to hear one type of music – I can hammer punk rock which could be followed by Jimmy Buffet, followed by the Chemical Brothers, followed by the Surf Punks.” He finds the progressive Classic Rock format “is interesting – programmers think older (and younger, too!) people want to hear one type of music… (yet) my program spans all generations to all genres of music – variety but not typical. I have discovered in doing the show for more than a year, because people have easy access to all types of music online, their tastes have expanded.”

“I feel Poorman’s Morning Rush is the closest thing I’ve enjoyed doing since the glory days of KROQ. It’s basically a progressive Classic Rock format combining all genres of music and all eras with plenty of listener interaction and giveaways. I take listener instant requests, real, not pre-set up. …I’m always surprised with what listeners come up with. Tons of people phone, text, email, and social media requests. It’s all about the collaboration between listener requests and my gut.”

Each day, Poorman features a “World Premiere Song of the Day” a song getting a first play ever on radio.” 

When asked how his current program compares with his past experience, Poorman said “I think this is the closest thing to the glory days of KROQ, but even KROQ had a format. For example I can play Soft Cell. I’ve discovered they have a lot of other incredible music besides Tainted Love and Sex Dwarf. We now go way beyond KROQ’s format.”

He periodically offers punk rock, something rarely ever heard on the radio. “I thought it was crap back in the day, but now I love it! A lot of people like punk rock, and many don’t realize there are quite a few punk rock classics that rarely, if ever, got played on the radio. A programmer would never play them in the morning, but I do, and it works! I’ve even played ten minute songs in the morning! The flexibility and the freedom is different than any other place I’ve worked at.”

Poorman said there are a few similarities to college radio, yet the difference is “unlike college, I mix in the hits.”

“I talk to listeners on air, and that can be pretty funny. We also feature the ‘Mayor’s Minute’ with Newport Beach Mayor Will O’Neill. We recently chronicled live on the radio his daily battle with Governor Gavin Newsom  keeping Newport and the Orange County beaches open despite the Governor’s order to shut them down during the pandemic. This battle received national news coverage, and we had exclusive access with the Mayor everyday. It was intense, great radio!”

The show also includes a Surf Report, the aforementioned “World Premiere Song of the Day,” a Loveline-themed segment, plus having sponsors “pop on the air with me.” Poorman does “a ton of giveaways, people don’t do that very often anymore – restaurant swag, the Poorman ‘social distancing t-shirt,’ hoodies, the ‘PoorManDana’ (Ed. note: These items are also available for purchase, ordering information below), gift cards, and more. BTW, giveaways, big and small, are winners! For whatever reason, radio has forgotten the audience loves stuff ‘for freeeeeeeeeeee.’”

Among the fans of Poorman’s current show is longtime LARadio veteran Kurt Kretzschmar, now Senior Director of Affiliate Sales for Premiere Networks. “I’ve listened to The Poorman for many years, starting with my days at Arcadia High School when some of the KROQ dj’s would perform at school dances, extending though my days at UCLA and after that. I was a P-1 listener of Loveline while he was the host, and watched his Poorman’s Bikini Beach show on KDOC-TV.” 

Kretzschmar said he knows why Poorman is succeeding with his latest venture. “He’s always been cool, entertaining, and knows what Southern California listeners want to hear. To his credit, he has remained entertaining to this day,” said Kretzchmar.

KOCI describes itself as “Orange County’s Community Radio,” a non-profit, low-powered fm, its 42 watts on 101.5/fm covering the southern area of the county. Still, KOCI has a potential reach of more than one million (“many affluent”) listeners, plus their worldwide live stream at

Poorman gets his own advertisers (“I’m a pretty good salesman because I have to be”). He said his sponsorship “is booming and even growing during the current lockdown. In fact, I just landed a Barber Shop sponsor, a scant few days after Orange County reopened them. It’s the Official Barber Shop of Poorman’s Morning Rush. They even want me to get a haircut!”

“I’ve kept my sponsors through the whole pandemic. I have some pretty innovative ways of integrating my sponsors into the show. From a financial standpoint, my morning show on this little station has turned into a windfall. What’s really wonderful is many of my sponsors are mainstream, big money companies. I have car dealers, financial advisors, brokerage houses, an air conditioning / heating service…I had restaurants advertising curbside service, now they’re reopening for regular business in the OC. I’ve had to think outside the box my entire career, so I do unique things with my sponsors that nobody does.”

He thinks now is an opportune time for radio. “There are no new tv shows, people have maxed out with Netflix to a certain degree…radio is live, national, local and could be slammed with sponsors. My show certainly is.”

Poorman thinks his show would be successful in syndication. “I’ve got some things that would work in the mainstream very well. It could make any market a lot of money.” Always looking at opportunities regardless of the platform, Poorman is finding ways to keep himself busy. “I’m doing two things right now. The radio show is a huge priority five days a week. In 2012, I began acting in New York. I most recently had a starring role in the Surfaces video ‘Sunday Best,’ a huge hit on TikTok, and 60 million views on YouTube. I play the grumpy boss who has the only speaking part at the beginning of the vid. I did another video for (the group) Strokes called ‘Bad Decisions.’ where I play a 70’s QVC type host trying to sell a ‘Strokes Clone Machine.’”

He also has done tv commercials, including an ad “where I’m a burned out Pepsi janitor who has discovered a secret floor remaking  Crystal Pepsi (remember the clear Pepsi experiment in the 90’s).”

I love acting as much as I love radio. It’s different.” Poorman is inviting listeners to tune in Monday, where he’ll have a “major announcement” at 8:45 a.m. “People won’t even believe what I’ve been doing during the 17 days away from the station.” If you miss the announcement, he said it will be replayed at

He continues to enjoy and appreciate his current fortunes. “I feel very humbled and honored to be back on the radio, a job that came out of nowhere when I thought I couldn’t get a job, anywhere…life is good!” said Poorman. (Story written by LARadio Senior Correspondent, Alan Oda)
(If you’d like to order a “Poorman’s Social Distancing” t-shirt or Hoodie or “PoorManDana” (bandana), here’s how:
Venmo payment at @Jim-Trenton or PayPal Choose Sizes: 2XL, XL, L, M, S (Men or Ladies).

Choose T-shirt $15 plus $5 shipping per shirt, PoorManDana $12 plus $3 shipping, and / or choose the hoodie $25 plus $5 shipping.
Please also provide Name, Shipping Address, Size, Quantity, Phone, Email Code: 6155 Allow 10 Days For Delivery. Thanks!)

"K-Earth Top 300 of All Time"

KRTH Memorial Day
Top 300

20. Return to Sender, Elvis Presley
19. Earth Angel, Penguins
18. Sherry, Four Seasons
17. Under the Boardwalk, Drifters
16. Blue Moon, Marcels
15. You Send Me, Sam Cooke
14. Walk Like A Man, Four Seasons
13. Up On The Roof, Drifters
12. Only the Lonely, Roy Orbison
11. My Girl, Temptations
10. It's All in the Game, Tommy Edwards
9. When A Man Loves A Woman, Percy Sledge
8. My Guy, Mary Wells
7. Dream Lover, Bobby Darin
6. Oh, Pretty Woman, Roy Orbison
5. Tears On My Pillow, Little Anthony
4. Shoop Shoop Song, Betty Everett
3. La Bamba, Richie Valens
2. Stand By Me, Ben E. King
1. Unchained Melody, Righteous Brothers


KRTH Memorial Day
Top 300

20. Born to be Wild, Steppenwolf
19. Something, Beatles
18. Time Is On My Side, Rolling Stones
17. Respect, Aretha Franklin
16. California Dreamin', Mamas & Papas
15. I'm Still In Love With You, Al Green
14. You've Lost That Lovin' Feeling, Righteous Brothers
13. La Bamba, Ritchie Valens
12. We Can Work It Out, Beatles
11. Rescue Me, Fontella Bass
10. Stand By Me, Ben E. King
9. Just My Imagination, Temptations
8. And I Love Her, Beatles
7. When A Man Loves A Woman, Percy Sledge
6. Shoop Shoop Song, Betty Everett
5. Ooh Baby, Baby, Smokey Robinson & the Miracles
4. My Girl, Temptations
3. Black Magic Woman, Santana
2. Unchained Medody, Righteous Brothers
1. Baby I Need Your Loving, Four Tops


KRTH Memorial Day
Top 300

20. Every Breath You Take, Police
19. Oh, Baby Baby, Linda Ronstadt
18. Stand By Me, Ben E. King
17. Can’t Buy Me Love, Beatles
16. That Lady, Isley Brothers
15. Rhythm of the Rain, Cascades
14. Tears of a Clown, Miracles
13. Nowhere to Run, Martha & the Vandellas
12. Imagine, John Lennon
11. Black Magic Woman, Santana
10. Unchained Melody, Righteous Brothers
9. Reach Out, I’ll Be There, Four Tops
8. I Say A Little Prayer, Aretha Franklin
7. Baby, I Need Your Lovin,’ Four Tops
6. When a Man Loves a Woman, Percy Sledge
5. Rescue Me, Fontella Bass
4. Something, Beatles
3. Evil Ways, Santana
2. Oh, Pretty Woman, Roy Orbison
1. My Girl, Temptations

Email Saturday, 5.30.2020

** Remembering Terry Nelson

Terry Nelson was my boss at two radio stations in Sacramento, KROY and KXOA. He was my mentor and a good friend. He was also ultra-smooth on the air. Terry worked at some great properties, 99X in NYC, KFRC in San Francisco and of course KFI in LA.

When he was doing mornings in New York City, he and his old roommate would put each other on the air doing bits. Of course, the RKO execs at 99X hated it as did the NBC execs at 660, but since it was Don Imus, what could they do?

Terry was more than my friend, he was one of my idols and taught me a lot about life and radio. I will miss him terribly.” – Bryan Simmons

** Nelson was First-Rate!

“I worked side-by-side with Terry Nelson doing the morning show on KCTC/fm, Sacramento for nine years at Tribune Broadcasting, beginning in 1981. This was after he returned to Sacramento from KFI and 99X radio in New York City because he and his wife Patti wanted to raise their young daughter in the area where they were raised. Every morning we were together, he as the host, and I as the news director / anchor.

He was a first-rate talent who was extremely generous and always encouraged me to be more than just the ‘newsman.’ We pulled some real stunts in those years. We claimed heavy rainfall caused the runways at Metro Airport to shrink therefore some planes could not land or take off. And yes, the tower at the airport got phone calls asking about flights in and out.

We started one Monday morning announcing that the International Date Line had snapped and landed in the middle of the Sacramento River. Of course, if the listeners lived on one side of the river, it was still Sunday and they did not have to go to work. If they lived on the other side, it was Monday and yes, they had to go to work.

We co-hosted a fundraiser for the Leukemia Foundation and auctioned off Rush Limbaugh for an afternoon lunch to the lucky winner. Rush said he listened to us every morning before he started his show at 9 a.m. on KFBK. During that time

Terry and I were about as close as two men could get as friends and co-workers...or should I say co-conspirators in the crazy world of Radio Broadcasting. Oh, and after the ‘International Date Line’ stunt, I received a call from a certain woman in San Francisco saying she was the news director of a certain radio station and she wanted to know ‘why she had not seen the story on the wire!’

One final thought. At the end of each morning show Terry would come down the hall, stick his head in my office and with a twinkle in his eye say ‘well DB we fooled 'em again!’ Fun-loving, extremely creative, blessed with a great set of pipes, and full of humor always...that was Terry Nelson! RIP!” – Dennis Baxter

** R & R Founder

“I wonder how many people remember that Radio and Records was founded by Robert Kardashian?” – Gary Bryan

** Jazz in LA

“The article on Richard Leos brought back wonderful memories about the history of KBCA (105.1). Commencing in 1960, KBCA became the world’s first 24-hour all-Jazz radio station. Richard was an important part of KBCA. Providing him an air shift to present Latin Jazz was a lucky inspiration. It was always a pleasure to work with him with his low-key style and his love of the format.

It was part of the process in providing an outlet for some of LA’s greatest undiscovered talent, many of whom were minority persons looking for an opportunity to break into local radio. In 1985, KBCA was honored to receive the award for the Los Angeles Business Achieving the Greatest Contribution to the Minority Community. As an aftermath to the Watts disturbances, the Award was never issued again.

The beginning was in 1960 when Daddy-O-Crump came to my office and asked for a chance to present Jazz nightly midnight to 6 a.m. I took a chance on Daddy-O, and within days Tommy Bee [the best Jazz dj ever] asked for the chance to present Jazz from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. every afternoon. A fortunate move as Tommy’s theme, Miles Davis playing Miles Ahead was played over and over.

Soon Jai Rich appeared, and although his experience was limited to being a house painter, Jai was provided morning drive, and Rick Holmes, a postal clerk, was given the 6 p.m. shift. Tolly Stroude was hired for evenings [Tolly made history with his slogan, ‘In the Middle of the Freeway’]. Next came Charlie Niles [‘Bebop Charlie’] and then Sam Fields, who was working in a deli, got an air shift. Jim Gosa, a sophisticated and all-time great dj joined the air staff.

Others to join the station: Kogi Sayama, a City employee, presented Jazz from Japan; Barbara Fouch. an African American lady began with Community Report, and of course, Hispanic dj Richard Leos joined KBCA for Latin Jazz.

KBCA now had a diverse staff of African Americans, Native American, and Japanese. Fouch was perhaps the first African American female on general market LA Radio. (Jesse Jackson came by to be on her program) We even featured a Jewish dj trainee, Stuart.

Richard Leos is missed.” – Saul Levine, president, KKGO (formerly KBCA), consultant to KKJZ

** K-EARTH Personality

“Thanks for adding my personal comment to your ‘before & after’ photos. It balanced what Rich ‘Brother’ Robbins had to say re. same topic. 

And, what former K-EARTH gm Pat Duffy had to say about K-EARTH’S success over the years is ‘right on.’ Thanks for hiring me to be a ‘voice’ on the greatest fm station in the land back in the summer of ’97.” – Larry McKay

** Robert W. Morgan Boss-o-graphy

“The Robert W. Morgan Boss-o-graphy video is terrific! Our special thanks to Kevin Gershan, producer and narration by Casey Kasem. It was a marvelous reminder of LARadio at its very best.” – Don Graham

** Boss Mornings

“Thanks for the picture of Lon Thomas and Liz Fulton from KIIS/fm, just before the introduction of ‘Rick Dees in The Morning" in 1981.

I vividly remember that control room in the mid to late 70s! It was on the 19th floor of the First Interstate Bank Building [formerly UCB / United California Bank] at 6255 Sunset Blvd, in Hollywood. I visited there a number of times, just before I just started my own carrier in LARadio. I was in shock and mesmerized out of my brain to see in ‘inner-workings’ of L.A.’s #1 pop station at the time. 

The Sunday morning board operator, ‘Darrell Weisser,’ who by the way, played back Watermark Inc.’s syndicated American Top 40 with Casey Kasem three LP set directly off the turntables, invited me up to the control room at that time. This was a few years before Pat Garrett hired me at KWST in 1981, ironically, located almost directly across the street! KWST was situated in The Crocker Bank Building, at 6430 Sunset, today’s CNN/Los Angeles Headquarters. – Anthony Ochoa, Camarillo

** Poska Memories

“Working in the PR business since the late 1950s, I had dealings with many Los Angeles radio personalities. I had become worker-friendly with a late-night talk show host on KFI named Al Poska. He’d often use my clients for his lengthy, and I must say highly intelligent, interviews.

Poska dressed immaculately in a dark blue or black pinstripe suit with a starched white shirt, button-down collar and conservative tie. He looked and dressed a bit like the late actor Adolphe Menjou. He was a model of sartorial perfection.

One day in the early 1960s, I ran into him at some sort of SCBA or advertising industry event. We chatted while sipping a pre-luncheon chardonnay when he was approached by an older woman who was obviously smitten by Mr. Poska. After a moment or two, the woman reached up and thoughtfully plucked a stray, curly black thread from his white collar.

Poska immediately yelped and feigned grabbing his crotch in pain. The woman nearly fainted and I damn near collapsed in laughter.” – Bennett J. Mintz, Chatsworth

** How I Got My First Job in Radio

“I called the local station protesting that their delivery did not do justice to their Classical format. Chief announcer called me in to the station. He administered the standard Classical announcer test to demonstrate that correctly pronouncing the names of composers, conductors, and performers in 15 languages was not easy. I aced the test. He hired me.” – Laura Brodian Freas Beraha

Terry Nelson, ex-KFI, Dies of an Apparent Heart Attack 

(May 29, 2020) Terry Nelson, a veteran of KFI in the late seventies, died this week (May 26), of an apparent heart attack. He was 73.  

Terry grew up in Modesto and attended Columbia College and Modesto Junior College in Modesto. Prior to arriving in Southern California, he worked at KFIV (1360AM) in Modesto and KJOY-Stockton with Don Imus. He was part of Top 40 KROY-Sacramento and WXLO (“99X”)-New York where he worked both drives.

While at “99X” from 1975-77, he was nominated for Disc Jockey of the Year. He had previously won the award for small market radio. In 1979, Terry left the 50,000-watt giant KFI for KFRC-San Francisco. He eventually returned to Sacramento and served as the apd at KXOA. Terry then worked at KYMX- Sacramento until 1996. He was in sales at KWIN-Stockton for many years until his retirement several years ago.  

Jeff March, a lifelong friend and colleague reacted to Nelson’s passing: “I’m still numb about the passing of Terry Nelson. I’ve known him for nearly 48 years, when he was a disc jockey (and soon to be music director) of 1240 KROY radio in Sacramento. I worked behind the scenes at the station as production manager (which meant I wrote copy for local commercials, assigned spots to jocks to voice and produce, and I voiced some spot tags and newscasts). Terry was a popular personality on the station, a big contributor to KROY’s consistent market-leading ratings.
I keep trying to replay in my mind the phone conversation that I had with Terry five weeks ago, on April 20. It was nothing remarkable, just kinda catching up with each other and talking about the shelter-in-place situation. I am glad that during the course of the conversation I made a point of telling Terry that I will always remember him for a kindness that he did for me in November 1972, shortly after he and I had first met.

When I started working at KROY, my wife Marsha and I were living in a duplex a couple of blocks from the rail yard in Roseville. We had chosen that location because it was a good halfway point for both of us when I was in my previous job at KAHI in Auburn and Marsha was a student at Sac State. One morning in mid-November ’72, my car ran rough the whole distance from Roseville to KROY on Arden Way. It was a bright yellow 1970 Plymouth Barracuda — an appropriate color because it was a real lemon. Something always was going wrong with that car.

Well, that particular morning, I parked in front of the station and lifted up my hood, hoping that I would see something really obvious (not that I knew what I was looking for, other than maybe a loose distributor cap or a dangling spark plug wire or something like that). Terry pulled up his red Volkswagen station wagon right behind my car and asked what was going on. I told him that something was wrong with the engine, but I was completely unfamiliar with Sacramento auto repair places.

Terry suggested a KROY advertiser, a repair shop on Folsom Boulevard east of Power Inn Road. He told me he would follow me there and would drive me back to the station. Consider two things: (1) Terry barely knew me then; and (2) this was shortly after 8 a.m., and Terry’s air shift started at 9. But he said, ‘let’s go,’ and off we went. The repair shop was about six miles away, all on surface streets. We hauled over there as fast as we could, I dropped off the car at the shop and quickly described the problem, and then I piled into Terry’s car and he raced back to KROY barely in time to begin his shift. At the end of the day, when the repair work on my car was done, Terry drove me back to the service shop. I was the new guy at KROY, he didn’t have to do that for me. But he did. THAT was the Terry Nelson who I will always fondly remember.

His talent took him to major markets. He left Sacramento in the spring of 1975 to join the on-air staff at WXLO (99X) New York. In a 2009 email message that I still have, Terry wrote ‘When I first went to 99X, I worked with Walt ‘Baby’ Love there. Walt broke me in at the station — he taught me the format, who was cool, who to watch out for, what I could and could not get away with.’ He returned to Sacramento in the summer of 1977 to become program director of KROY, then went to rival KXOA Sacramento, then worked at KFI and KFRC, before returning to his home turf here in the Central Valley. So long, old friend.” – Jeff March

Terry’s wife Constance posted the following on social media: "We would like to thank everyone for your outpouring of love and condolences. We can’t tell you enough how much it means to us. Terry passed away at home on May 26. It was unexpected but quick and with a happy belly. He had enjoyed a great day all the way into a dinner he said was incredible (winner winner Salisbury dinner). We are currently planning a memorial celebration of his life and would love to gather some stories and pictures from all of you. We will post details for submitting photos, audio, etc. shortly."

Hear Ache. Just when I rhetorically muttered ‘How long is this going to last?’ another month is ready to pass. June and here comes summertime … Jim Duncan saw the R&R covers in yesterday’s column. He sent a link to all of their issues over the years, which you can access here :  ... Prominent KCBS/Channel 2 anchors Jeff Michael and Sharon Tay, along with meteorologist Garth Kemp, were cut late Wednesday amid sweeping corporate layoffs … Radio stations are playing more uplifting music these days, according to a social media post. So, if you feel like you’ve heard Good as Hell by Lizzo more than usual, it’s not just in your head … Fun to hear Sluggo on KLOS, sitting in for Gary Moore. Yesterday Sluggo took a call from a listener in the High Desert, emphasis on High. “I just like it because it is High,” Sluggo told listener Lisa ... California listens to podcasts more than any other US state, according to Stitcher.

Two LARP Appear in LA Business Journal Most Influential People Issue


(May 28, 2020) The Los Angeles Business Journal's fifth annual LA500 list, honoring the most influential leaders and executives in Los Angeles, includes two LARP – KCRW’s Jennifer Ferro and iHeart’s Kevin LeGrett. The survey was done before Covid-19 and spotlighted the leading figures from the city’s business community.

Jennifer Ferro said that Santa Monica-based NPR affiliate KCRW will continue its commitment to cutting-edge music programming,
which receives substantial airtime on the station. To that end, in January the station announced it had promoted longtime KCRW DJ Anne Litt to music director.
Litt is the fifth person to hold the influential post since it was created in 1979 and the first woman in the job.

Ferro joined public radio station KCRW in 1994. Since starting as a volunteer, she has held various roles including assistant general manager
and executive producer of the “Good Food” program. She has also worked in development, membership production, operations and marketing.
In 2019 KCRW left its basement digs and moved into a new 34, 000-square-foot, three-story glass structure built at a cost of $21.7 million
on the Santa Monica College campus. Ferro is a senior fellow for the UCLA Luskin School of Public Policy and serves on the board of Zocalo Public Square.


Kevin Legrett is the Division President, Los Angeles and Division President of the West iHeartMedia
In a January restructuring, iHeartMedia grouped its markets into four divisions. LeGrett and Scott Hopeck co-led the Regional Division.
LeGrett now oversees the company’s West Coast region division, taking responsibility across some of the country’s largest markets.
He has been the market president of Los Angeles since 2015, overseeing the sales, programming, digital and event teams in L.A.
iHeart has eight radio properties in L.A., including KIIS/fm, home to Ryan Seacrest.

LeGrett began his career at CBS Radio. In 2003 he moved to Citadel Broadcasting to serve as the company s president.
LeGrett joined iHeart in 2010 as vice president and market manager for Rochester, New York.
He became senior vice president of operations for iHeartMedia’s regional markets in 2012, overseeing more than 220 radio stations
and more than 50 markets in the Northeast and Midwest regions. LeGrett moved to Southern California in 2015
when he took on the role of market president for Los Angeles. In 2017 he assumed the added responsibility of president of the company’s West Division.
LeGrett is a board member of California Broadcasters Association.

Hear Ache. After announcing the Presidential Inauguration Parade and Voices of the People Concert at the Lincoln Memorial in 2017, Steve Ray (KRCI, KGRB, KRLA, K-Lite, KMPC, Westwood One Oldies Channel) has been named the primary Live Event Announcer for the RNC Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina this coming August. He’s taking a short sabbatical from anchoring at WBAL-Baltimore during that period to maintain news credibility … KEIB’s Rush Limbaugh said Tuesday that the current cycle of treatment for his lung cancer is “kicking my ass.” He told his listeners “for the last seven days, I have been virtually worthless, virtually useless. I haven’t left the house” and that he does “not have the energy that I used to have.” ... Gallery photo above is a look at KIIS/fm prior to the arrival of Rick Dees. Lon Thomas and Liz Fulton were in morning drive.


Douglas Brown provided some classic covers from Radio & Records

Scully Sports Icon Winner

(May 27, 2020) Over the years anytime we have asked you to vote for your favorite LARPs, Vin Scully is always at the top or close to it. A number of years ago we replicated March Madness with our own brackets, pitting personalities against each other. After weeks of voting and elimination, Vin Scully won that competition. Looks like someone else decided bracketology can be fun. Houston Mitchell of the LA Times has been having readers vote for favorite sports icons. The Times held a month-long March Madness-style tournament in with 128 entrants were divided and seeded into four 32-person regionals (baseball, basketball, football and wild card.

Vin Scully easily won the baseball regionals and then defeated the legendary Rams defensive unit of the late 1960, The Fearsome Foursome. It got down to Magic Johnson versus Scully. With 45,000 votes cast for the final, Vinny received 62.1% while Magic Johnson received 37.9%.

Mitchell reiterated Scully’s final words as a Dodgers broadcaster at the end of the 2016 season and they feel equally comforting today and worth repeating: His final words as a Dodgers broadcaster: “You know, friends, so many people have wished me congratulations on a 67-year career in baseball, and they’ve wished me a wonderful retirement with my family, and now, all I can do is tell you what I wish for you. May God give you, for every storm, a rainbow; for every tear, a smile; for every care, a promise; and a blessing in each trial. For every problem life seems, a faithful friend to share; for every sigh, a sweet song, and an answer for each prayer. You and I have been friends for a long time, but I know, in my heart, I’ve always needed you more than you’ve ever needed me, and I’ll miss our time together more than I can say. But you know what, there will be a new day, and, eventually, a new year, and when the upcoming winter gives way to spring, ooh, rest assured, once again, it will be time for Dodger baseball. So, this is Vin Scully wishing you a pleasant good afternoon, wherever you may be.”  

Hear Ache.
The group Runaway June has been tapped to “take over” middays on Go Country 105 (KKGO) for the month of June. “As a California native, I listen to Go Country every time I am in the car or at home, so I am so excited that the girls and I will be hosting the show,” said Jennifer Wayne of  … Congratulations to former 93/KHJ jock Walt Baby Love who has been syndicating Gospel Traxx for 25 years … Versatile LARP Stephanie Miller is taking her Sexy Liberal Tour into your home. Purchase online tickets at:

Seacrest Misses TV Assignment. There were renewed fears for Ryan Seacrest Monday after he was once again absent from the airwaves, according to Page 6 of the New York Post. A week and a half ago during the finale of American Idol, Ryan slurred his speech during the broadcast. When he skipped the next day’s Live with Kelly and Ryan broadcast, his rep said Ryan suffered exhaustion, not a stroke. He returned to co-hosting duties with Kelly Ripa for the rest of the week. But he was missing from the show once again on Memorial Day. “Page Six is told that Monday’s episode was pre-taped last week when Seacrest was exhausted, but it was noticed by fans on Twitter when the show aired. Ripa’s husband, Mark Consuelos, stood in for Seacrest for the second straight Monday.

Mark Alyn (center) and John Darin from one of many projects they did together. Barbara Valentine was host-producer. 
"For more than 20 years John and I worked on a variety of projects - radio and TV - on one project he would be the host and I would direct.
Photo is on set in Santa Barbara where I was directing and then the next project he would direct me and I would host.
He was always funny - or should I say punny," emailed Alyn.  

New Morning Show at Go Country 

(May 26, 2020) KKGO Go Country 105 beefed up its morning show this week with the addition of Adam Bookbinder to their AM drive, joining Country singer Tim Hurley. "We could not be more excited to have Adam join Tim in the mornings on Go Country 105,” said pd Michael Levine.

“Adam is a seasoned professional who has worked extremely well with Tim over the last year. We look forward to an exciting and entertaining show from the both of them.”

Adam joined Go Country 105 three years ago as digital director. Prior to KKGO, he spent 14 years as digital content manager at CBS Radio’s 94.7 The WAVE and K-EARTH 101. Adam’s on-air experience includes KBBY-Oxnard/Ventura and WPST-Trenton/Philadelphia.

In 2014 Tim was discovered singing Karaoke at a bar in Playa del Rey. Just two months later, he was performing onstage for the first time, opening for John Michael Montgomery at Fort Bliss in El Paso. After a tremendous reception, he decided to pursue a career in music. Originally from Rhode Island, Tim was raised on a variety of musical genres, but in college, the songwriting and lyrics in country music won him over.
Hear Ache
. The fall out continues from the ‘Death of KROQ’ Variety story. Jed the Fish wrote on Twitter: “The reason I lost interest in KROQ was because the big group in 2009 was the antithetically-named ‘Fun.’” … Podcast news from PodNews: Amazon will be delivering podcasts soon, replacing TuneIn as the default podcast experience for Alexa speakers …  Have and Have Nots in Podcast world. 86-year-old Larry King, has signed a deal reportedly worth $5m for his first-ever podcast. And will Joe Rogan really get $100 million to take his podcast to Spotify?

ROBERT W MORGAN BOSS OGRAPHY (Narrated by Casey Kasem) ... thanks to Kevin Gershan

"Memorial Day. Take a moment this weekend to say...Thank the souls of every man and woman that gave all they that we may live in freedom. Semper Fi !!" - Jeff Baugh KFIinthesky

Email Saturday, 5.23.2020

** End of KROQ?

“After reading the devastating Variety piece on what could be the final chapter for KROQ [at least in any recognizable form], it might be time to consider the question: Should 106.7 FM become a simulcast of KNX Newsradio? 

AM stations will face signal challenges in the age of electric cars and audience challenges with younger listeners who’ve never once hit the AM button. It might be a way to protect the only fully-staffed 24-hour radio newsroom in the southland. The fires, impeachment and coronavirus coverage may have raised their profile of late, but KNX could need more muscle in the long run, and there will always be a need for strong local news coverage on the radio.

If KROQ is dying, perhaps let it die with dignity and give KNX its long-deserved chance at fm, just as KCBS in San Francisco and WBBM in Chicago now offer.” – Ethan Harp, New York

** KNX’s Redundancy

“In Austin, Chicago, Denver, Seattle, Portland, Jacksonville, Milwaukee, Indianapolis, Atlanta, Detroit, Cincinnati, Minneapolis, Sacramento, San Diego, San Francisco, Salt Lake City and Washington DC, either a news station or news/talk station is number one in the ratings. In Los Angeles, KNX is tied for eighth.

A typical ten-minute period can explain KNX’s eighth-place showing: ‘KNX, traffic and weather together on the fives. Here’s Tonya Campos.’ Then a traffic report. Then, ‘Next traffic report at 10:15. I'm Tonya Campos with more traffic reports more often on KNX.’ Three minutes later, a 30-second promo, totally unnecessary, telling us KNX provides traffic reports. Two minutes later, ‘A three-car pileup has the two right lanes blocked on the 210 in Monrovia. We’ll tell you about it in four minutes.’ Two minutes later, a 30-second promo, totally unnecessary, telling us KNX is a news station.

Add up all the traffic reports, promos and commercials and only 50 percent of the broadcast day on ‘Southern California's only 24-hour all-News station’ is devoted to news.” – Steven Thompson

** KNX Traffic a Howl on KTWV

“I enjoyed most of the letters in Email Saturday, except Ken Leighton needs to lighten up! For those of us who drive, essential workers, Traffic on the 5’s and Jennifer York in particular are very welcome, especially when navigating the 210 at 6:30 in the morning! [I’m sure Mr. Leighton doesn't listen to The Wave as Jennifer does Pat Prescott’s morning show in between KNX spots and is a howl!]

Love the self-portrait! Emoji And the cartoon! Re the Sports TALKERS: Sad fact of life is I can only stand two of the seven ‘Heavy Hundred’ – Dan Patrick and Petros! I’ve had the pleasure of speaking to both of them and they are both gentlemen and entertaining! As for the others, you know what they say about ‘If you don't have something nice to say...’ Ken Minyard did / said nothing but the truth. Facebook is run by cowards who allow racial slurs, hate speech and threats but will delete your posts if you call a murderer ‘white trash!’ It’s getting so you have to a) take a deep breath and count to ten before replying to offensive posts, b) scrolling by offensive re-tweets by friends and relatives without saying anything and c) unfriending / unfollowing the same friends / family if they start posting the same things as their own posts/tweets.  I miss having intelligent discussions.

By the way, in case you need a dose of real live sports, TVG has been a beacon of light in the midst of canned sports shows and classic baseball games. Even NBC Sports have teamed up with them Fridays-Sundays in a simulcast, and their on-air personalities not only entertain but educate and even talk about the old days of radio broadcasts of races.” – Julie T. Byers

** K-EARTH Success

“KRTH has arguably the best fm signal in America. First position on Mt Wilson, 6,000 feet, 53KW. Goes from Santa Barbara to San Diego, East to Mojave.

We always knew the station was underrated during the diary methodology because it was a second favorite. On everyone’s dial but never first up. The new methodology proved us right.

Then there are the programmers, from Bill Drake to Mike Phillips to Jhani Kaye during my time they kept the format intact and evolved the music. We went from 50’s-60’s to the 70’s. Now they have moved into the 80’s still playing the tight rotation big hits. They have also transitioned from the ‘big balls’ jocks of my era to a younger sounding air staff. I don’t know the new pd staff but respect them immensely. They haven’t broken the format. They have tuned it to the current times.

And they have the last of the ‘live local’ morning shows. I can say that hiring Gary Bryant was the best decision I ever made. The fact that he is still on the air makes me happy to be a radio guy.” – Pat Duffy

** Nostalgia Sunday

“I read the Nostalgia Sunday story from last week and came across the blurb about Buck Owens and the Buckaroos appearing at the Olympic Auditorium, where for many years boxing was the main draw. It was located near the south end of the I-10 freeway in downtown Los Angeles. I remember when I would take the MTA Blue Line into the city. You can see the building up close when the train would stop at the Grand Street station. There used to be a mural of a boxer, but I believe it is gone now. The building is now owned by a Korean church.” – Dan Ramos, Joshua Tree

** Look of the Quarantined

“The ‘LARadio Publisher Don Barrett Before Self-Quarantine and After’ photos are hysterical as is ‘The Sound Of Silence’ and the Hope / Jobs / Cash and Bacon funnies. You really outdid yourself in the humor department today partner, the more laughs the better these days so many thanks helping us all to keep our daubers up!” – Rich Brother Robbin

** Before and After Photos

“The pic’ of you before and after is alarming. Get a lot of rest and take serious care of yourself.  You’re very important to all of us.” – Larry McKay

Rob Newton Part of KFI News Team

(May 22, 2020) KFI AM 640 has always had a knack for finding wonderful news talent. Not only do they do their newscasts covering Southland stories, they integrate themselves seamlessly into the high-profile local talk shows. They actively become part of the show.

One of the newest voices is Rob Newton. Last summer Rob joined the Talk station as a news anchor and reporter. When he’s not doing his news job, Rob is producing the Walk in Truth radio show and podcast where he also produces and sometimes voices radio commercials. Walk in Truth is an audio ministry of Living Truth Christian Fellowship in Corona.

Rob grew up in Big Bear Lake and graduated from the radio broadcasting program at Fullerton College. “My first paid job was at KCAA AM 1050 in San Bernardino in 2012,” emailed Rob. “I was a board op and announcer.” In 2013, he started as an announcer and producer at KBRT AM 740 in Costa Mesa. 

Rob has a love for the great outdoors and has been hiking and camping since before it was REI-hipster cool. He also loves to go hunting and fishing whenever he can. Thanks to his English teacher girlfriend, he now loves to read as well. You can follow Rob @radiorobnewton.

Hear Ache
. Wanna talk sports? Harvey Hyde interviews Iron Man Chuck Hayes. Listen here ... Nancy Rodriguez, most recently with Ventura radio is the new head of marketing for the Boys & Girls Club of Santa Paula … Rob Archer is celebrating five years with KNX ... If you have Alexa, ask her to play Shimmy Shimmy Ko Ko Bop. Her response will put a smile on your face ... Cousin Brucie had a nice tribute to Johnny Otis this week on '60s on 6' at SiriusXM. Learned some things about the music pioneer I never knew. One of my first concerts was seeing him at one of Art Laboe's dances at El Monte Legion Stadium. Of course, the diversified musician was also a LARP.

Former KFWB All-News News Director Dies

(May 21, 2020) Reg Laite, former KFWB news director in 1971-73, died on May 12, 2020 of cancer at age 89. 

Reg was born on October 2, 1930 in St. John’s, Newfoundland. After his high school years in Brewer, Maine he served four years in the U.S. Air Force and subsequently earned his Bachelor’s degree in journalism from Boston University.

In 1958 he embarked on a career in broadcast news, starting as combined writer, editor and announcer at a radio station in Charlotte, North Carolina. Eventually,Reg became news director of KYW in Philadelphia and then KFWB, where he was one of the early pioneers in the all-News format.

The Laites moved to Sleepy Hollow in the Bicentennial summer of 1976, when Reg became news director of WOR 710 AM-New York. He also hosted Newsbeat, interviewing Governors Carey and Cuomo, mayors, and other public figures on air. He later left management and finished his career writing and editing for NBC television news. 

During his long retirement, he enjoyed golfing, reading, and mentoring those around him. 
Leos Materialized. Last week we lamented that while reconstructing the “L” section of Where Are They Now, we discovered that Richard Leos, formerly a jock with Jazz KBCA (105.1/fm), had died. We had scant information on his life, but David Grudt and Tony Morton both dug up a 1975 LA Times story from radio reporter James Brown. Thank you.

Richard spent eight years with Saul Levine’s station working as a county probation officer during the week and hosting a Latin music on the weekends. The music was a “melting pot of ‘30s and ‘40s Cuban dance bands, African and South American influences, fortified by American jazz and popularized by such rock groups as Santana and Malo.”

Leos starved for a time as a professional musician in Los Angeles, before deciding to join the Armed Forces and ending up at Arizona State University to study architecture. In 1963, he returned to the Southland. He loved KBCA and called the owner, Saul Levine, to complain about the paucity of Latin music. Levine gave him a weekend shift while during the week, Leos worked with youngsters at the county probation office.

He told Brown: “Music is my first love and always will be. I mean, this show is like my pacifier – I just come here and trip out.”

Hear Ache
. Tuesday night The Voice topped the competition … Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Joe Walsh is bringing an old-fashioned rock n’ roll radio show to 88.5/fm. The new show debuts at 6 p.m. this Saturday. Walsh is a longtime listener and contributor to the AAA station … Wendy Williams scheduled to take another hiatus from her show due to health reasons.

KNX's Rob Archer's new book, “Sunday Traffic Every Day: Selected poems 1980-2020,” was published this week and now available
from Amazon in Kindle and paperback versions. "Call it apocalyptic poetry," said Archer.
"The cover is an original painting by my KNX colleague Emily Valdez."

Response to Seacrest's Performance

(May 20, 2020) Social media lit up following Sunday night’s American Idol,  with concerns that host Ryan Seacrest suffered a stroke while on the air. At one point he struggled to read off the script during the finale, while his left eye appeared larger than his right. Some thought he might have had a stroke, Bell's Palsy, or a TIA incident. When Ryan didn’t appear on Monday’s Live with Kelly and Ryan, speculation grew more intense. But he was on the tv show Tuesday morning.

The 45-year-old tv and KIIS morning star said he was thankful for well wishes after suffering ‘exhaustion.’ A rep for Ryan said he did not suffer a stroke but just adjusting to the new normal and “the added stress of putting on live shows from home.” Ryan was in great spirits as he rejoined Kelly Ripa on Tuesday morning for Live with Kelly and Ryan, according to Daily Seacrest did not address fears about his health but thanked Kelly’s husband Mark Consuelos for stepping in for him when he took the day off. He didn’t make any mention of the concerns for his health. “Between Live with Kelly and RyanAmerican Idol, On Air with Ryan Seacrest, (KIIS/fm) and the Disney Family Singalong specials, he has been juggling three to four on-air jobs over the last few weeks and he’s in need of rest,” said a Seacrest rep.

Bob Koontz, a two-time victim of Bell's palsey, watched the video of Ryan and believes he may have had a very mild episode. "The first time I woke up with the entire left side of my face experiencing facial paralysis. We thought I had a stroke, my speech was affected and for me to carry on a conversation I needed to push up the left side of my face," emailed Koontz. "The second time was less severe but still had facial paralysis and the left eye lid closing. Some people told me that I sounded drunk when I spoke. I had acupuncture every day for 2 or 3 weeks and by the end of the month I was mostly back to normal. Some people never recover from it, the lasting negative effects for me my left eye still droops, so I guess I was pretty lucky."

Hear Ache. As we reported on Monday, Gene “Bean” Baxter is on the mend from coronavirus. “I’m not only feeling stronger every day but I’ll be gosh-darned if I’m gonna let Her Majesty outlive me,” tweeted Bean … The “Before” and “After” photo of me yesterday prompted some pretty snarky comments. Bob Sirkin thinks I should go to Walmart for some curlers. Dave Armstrong wanted to know which was the before photo and which was the after? K.M. Richards thinks I look just like Bruce Dern. Puhlese.  … The Voice rises to top Monday ratings … New pick-up line: “If Covid-19 doesn’t take you out, can I?” … Robert Feder was reviewing his highlights in a distinguished 40 years covering the media in Chicago, when he remembered the role that Steve Dahl (ex-KPPC) had on his own career. The news of Dahl’s firing following his Disco Demolition at Comiskey Park brought Feder his first front-page byline in the Chicago Sun-Times and “It began a career-defining association with the future Radio Hall of Famer. Though Dahl and I were at odds for many years, he did as much to boost my brand as anyone. People still tell me they first began reading my column because they heard him ripping me,” wrote Feder … Congratulations to Joe Cipriano, the voice of K-EARTH. “It's been Forty-One-derful years,” he posted on his Facebook page. “I've loved you through the 70s, 80s, 90s and Today - I think that's a radio format.” … John Jenkins of Santa Barbara thinks it may be perfect timing if you want to save some money at Christmas. “Tell the kids Santa Claus didn’t make it through the pandemic.” … Variety has a fascinating story headlined: 'It’s the End of the World Famous KROQ as We Know It.' There are even some quotes from Read it

"They said I can visit friends if I stay in my car." (Thanks to Richard Vaniotis)


Colin Cowherd Tops Heavy Hundred List of Sports Talkers

(May 19, 2020) KLAC’s Colin Cowherd has been named The Most Important Sports Talk Radio Host in America by TALKERS magazine. Every year TALKERS ranks sports talk hosts, duos, or ensembles from 1 to 100 based upon a set of criteria that includes a combination of hard and soft factors. TALKERS executive editor Kevin Casey says it’s important to note that this year’s Heavy Hundred comes with an important qualifying statement.

“The publication of this year’s list was delayed by the coronavirus pandemic and it is crucial to note that it represents a snapshot of the industry as it was shortly after January 1, 2020 and is based on performances and assessments made prior to that point. Although we were prepared to publish the list in March, we delayed publication in order to focus on the pandemic’s effect on the radio industry. As a result of COVID-19, some of the talent on this list have been victims of unexpected staff reductions and furloughs and are not currently on the air. It is our belief that they deserve to be recognized for their accomplishments, nonetheless.

Other LARP who made the Heavy Hundred Sports Talk host list:

1.   Colin Cowherd
2.   Jim Rome
3.   Dan Patrick
6.   Dan LeBatard & Stugotz
39. Steve Mason & John Ireland
42. Petros Papadakis & Matt Money Smith
65. Keyshawn, LZ & Travis

Hear Ache
. Ira David Sternberg (ex-KOST) is now a PR guru in Las Vegas. As they city reopens he suggests that you self-park at casinos unless your valet shows negative test results … Mark Taz Graves, formerly with OC Radio, has been battling prostate cancer. After a year since diagnosis Taz provides an update: “As of this month the cancer is still confined to my prostate. I have been on hormone injections of Lupron every six months and a daily regime of four Xtandi capsules. The plan is to continue to reduce the size of my prostate to a point where radiation can be performed without major damage to surrounding tissue. I still have a Supra Pubic Catheter and the goal is to avoid having a colostomy bag after radiation. My catheter prevents me from submerging in water and this is what causes me the most anxiety that I will never be able to enjoy the water like I have all my life.” … Former KABC morning super star Ken Minyard is perplexed. “On our Minyard & Minyard page Facebook shut us down for three days for using the same word that Trump did in his infamous tape to describe where he liked to grab women, only our use wasn't vulgar. We said: ‘Men who don't wear masks are P****ies.’ Better fix your algorithms Facebook.” … Mookie is thrilled that KCSN (88.5/fm) has been nominated for Station Of The Year in the upcoming, JBE (formerly FMQB) Triple-A SummitFest Awards. “The sweetest part is that the nominations are chosen by our industry peers,” emailed Mookie.

LARadio Publisher Don Barrett Before Self-Quarantine and After

Bean Contracts Coronavirus

(May 18, 2020) Gene “Bean” Baxter has again made headlines, but not the kind he was expecting. On Twitter, he announced that he has coronavirus, COVID-19. This is after doing what he perceived everything correctly with staying at home, going out only to walk the dog and food while wearing necessary protection gear. Bean recently left his almost 30-year reign as co-host of the popular KROQ Kevin & Bean Show to embark on a new journey, returning to his home country in England. In 2012, Bean donated one of his kidneys to KROQ engineer /personality Scott Mason.

Hear Ache. Pat Prescott, KTWV morning host and producer checked in to say that she is using our recent series on the future of radio after the pandemic in a Radio Broadcasting course she teaches at Santa Monica College. “The recent series on the future of radio has been especially helpful in advancing our dialogue on where we're headed and how the next generation of broadcasters will handle our industry’s current challenges,” emailed Pat … KROQ added a two-hour Latin music to its Sunday night programming. Gene “Bean” Baxter commented: “I’ve predicted @KROQ will eventually go Spanish, or Talk, for a long time. I just don’t see how the Los Angeles market can support so many rock stations. And KROQ is the most niche, and with the worst signal too. Still, I wish them well.” … Adam Carolla thinks we are well prepared for talking through plexiglass. “From arguing with the nice man at the check cashing place, being refused the bathroom key at the gas station, or catching up with family in prison this is our time to shine,” Adam wrote on social media … American Idol (hosted by Ryan Seacrest) has been renewed for a fourth season … Jim Richards noted that Keith Richards tested positive for everything but COVID-19 … Big jump in viewership at QVC and HSN, per Wall Street Journal … Strange social media posting about staying at home. “Getting a hair stuck in your mouth has to be a million times more gross when you’re bald.” … Michael Medved is returning to the radio on CRN1. “Michael is one of radio’s best storytellers. He provides knowledge, a unique perspective and truly entertains his listeners every single day,” according CRN president/ceo Mike Horn … Bad news for KNX all-News purists. The two-hour bartered Car Pro program on Saturday mornings has resumed after five-week hiatus while the station concentrated on coronavirus news … Howard Stern had a fascinating interview with Good Morning America co-host George Stephanopoulos last week. When Alex Trebek dies, Howard thinks George should be the new Jeopardy host. George, a Rhodes scholar, didn’t object to the idea … Engineer Jerry Lewine received excellent news in his cancer fight: “The results of this past week’s PET scan showed no cancer! I will soon begin stem cell replacement which will keep me isolated at City of Hope for about a month and if all goes as planned, this will ensure that the cancer will not recur. I’ll still have to be checked regularly for the rest of my life and you are invited to my 100th birthday bash! … Puns galore on the Internet about this pandemic: “I told my suitcases that there will be no vacation this year. Now I’m dealing with emotional baggage.”


LA Times ad from April 16, 1971 ... from David Grudt's collection


Email Saturday, 5.16.2020

** Tribute to R ‘n R Pioneer

“I go way back to the late 50s with Little Richard. I first saw him at my hometown Muncie, Indiana’s National Guard Armory. I was a student at Indiana University at the time. 

Richard, during one of the breaks and obviously attracted to me, asked me to travel with him on tour. I was amazed, but politely declined.

Much later, in the ’90s I was a dj at K-EARTH 101 and Richard’s original drummer [and former brother-in-law] Charles Connor was a long-time security guard there. I’d had trouble getting Richard’s autograph over the years and I asked Charles if he could get it for me. This practically indecipherable signature on Richard’s photo is the result: Little Richard aka Richard Penniman – RIP. He was an unforgettable, colorful monument to the beginnings of Rock & R & B Music.” – Larry McKay

 ** All the Hits, All the Time

“Would you have any idea why KRTH, whose playlist has been only Oldies for nearly 35 years, sits at or near the top all of the time?” – David Dana-Bashian

** Nostalgia Sunday

“I read the piece last Sunday on KNX and KFWB. I started in the mailroom at Columbia Square in 1970 and KNX had Mike Roy on in midday and the drama shows on at night. I don’t remember if USC play-by-play was on. The thinking then was there were hours where people were having lunch or watching tv. No in-car listening. Then came the killers for AM news.

Every local tv station started news shows from 6 a.m. on. Now till midnight. Then came computers, you didn’t have to wait 20 minutes to get the Dodgers score. A click and it was there. Headlines were there. The local tv shows were doing personality radio. LA never needed two all-News radio stations, KNX has the killer signal and because of that is still viable.

1010 WINS in New York had the signal to compete with WCBS. KFWB just had a hard-working talented staff trying to push the rock uphill. As for the Dodgers, their contract had clauses that only would allow for major disasters. They were the worst broadcast contracts ever because they had all the leverage. Especially at shit signals like KFWB. The final killer for AM News and Talk is the spot load, 18-20 minutes?” – Pat Duffy

** Armstrong Understood

“I really enjoyed reading the words from Dave Armstrong. He hired me to be the KKLA midday host from 1998-2004. He was the best general manager I ever worked for in my entire career. He was kind, direct and caring.

I remember my first week on air at KKLA. One of my sons suffered from migraine headaches. As a single parent, it was always challenging to have back-up childcare. On that day, I brought my son with me to the studio and put his blanket and pillow under the console and told him to be quiet as a mouse every time I opened the mic. He was such a sweet boy and was so quiet.

The studio was dark and in walked Dave Armstrong and noticed something under my console. On my gosh, I thought I was going to be fired my first week on the job. Instead, Dave returned with a special baseball. He told my son to feel better so he could get out there and play ball. I didn’t get fired and my kids were always welcomed at KKLA. Thank you, Dave Armstrong for your gentle, understanding and compassionate manner.” – Rita Pardue

** Thoughts on KNX

“I have trouble understanding how KNX actually went down in the April ratings while it seems every other news station across the country went up. Talker KFI was number 1 and even KABC increased by 40%. Here is my theory. I think KNX has done a very good job going out and getting more in-the-street ‘actualities’ than any other station. They are still staffed [thank God] by quality journalists. My only concern is this: why do they insist on so many long traffic reports? HELLO...DRIVING IS WAY, WAY DOWN. And yet their traffic reports every ten minutes seem just as long.

Also, I have to admit that while their morning traffic lady is probably a very nice person, it seems she has gotten carried away with her trademark Calamity Jane frenzy. It’s her shtick, her gimmick, to just flip out and get wildly excited over traffic, even when there isn’t any. She gets so frenetic that she mangles words to the point you can't understand them, or she just doesn’t even get them out at all. Words actually have fallen victim to her flip-out, hair-on-fire delivery. With her, it’s Fractious Friday every day of the week. It’s good she cares about her work. But there is no excuse for KNX to have gone down during the first full month of the Covid. This is the only thing I would suggest they work on. We have enough real drama. The overplayed KNX traffic reports are not helping in my opinion.” – Ken Leighton

** Early LA Radio

“I see we have Lompoc in common. Omitted from my brief bio on LARadio is the one year I spent there after leaving KFWB.

AFTRA struck the station in the spring of 1971, and since I was ‘at the editor’s desk,’ I qualified as management. The strike was brutal, worked us editors to the max during long days in six-day weeks. Management voices arrived from around Group W’s network, including Jim Burson, who had been news director at KYW in Philly when I landed there as a ‘management trainee’ after Vietnam.

It was great to work with Vince Campagna at KFWB — always gracious and friendly to me. I was a young know-it-all with a couple journalism degrees and five years as an Army officer when I took over as the editor of morning drive, and my reception from some of the heavy-hitters on the staff could be described as ‘chilly,’ but never from Vince.

One memory of my time in the early 70s: The parking lot behind KFWB on Hollywood Boulevard was a hot spot for crime. My shift on the news desk began at 2 a.m., so I was a bit wary when someone was stabbed in the lot late one night. I started carrying my Army-issue .45 caliber semi-automatic pistol into the station in a brown paper bag. I’d stash it the editor’s desk and go about my business. The union guys soon realized what I had in the drawer and filed a grievance. General manager Art Schreiber called me into his office and patiently explained that I couldn’t keep a loaded pistol in the editor’s desk any more — another cherished memory of fast times at KFWB.

I was fixing to leave KFWB when I attended a Walter Cronkite talk at the Ambassador Hotel that summer. He said cable was ‘the next big thing in television.’ I soaked it up, found a position at Lompoc Valley Cable TV as its first Local Origination Manager, and had a ball for a year cablecasting Lompoc and Cabrillo high school sports. I was the Chet Forte of Lompoc Valley! Scott Ostler, much-honored sports columnist now at the SF Chronicle, was sports editor at the Lompoc Record and hosted my Tuesday night replay of the Friday night football games. He interviewed the high school heroes, while I coordinated the playback in our tiny studio.” – Doug Carlson

** Saturday Night Come Together

“When creative people have down time, they create and that's what we’ve been doing. Tim Piper, my partner on the podcast Talks with John and the radio show Back with The Beatles, officially debuted our Saturday night variety show – the Come Together Club – on Facebook Live. It’s an hour of fun, music, talk and even a portion just for the kids. Our guests included the iconic Shotgun Tom Kelly, Big Band singer Bill A. Jones, Screamin’ Scott Simon from Sha Na Na, John Van Kamp from and Tommy Scheckel from Paul Revere's Raiders. It’s not just about entertainment, it’s about fun and positivity. We were really pleased to see [in the comments] our audience not just enjoying the show but talking to each other – exactly what the Come Together Club is supposed to do.” - Tammy Trujillo

** Post Covid-19

“As I sit in our temporary home studio, I can only think of our late great boss, Stanley L Spero, general manager at Golden West Broadcasters, KMPC 710 Los Angeles. When I first met Stan in 1976, he said radio will never die. Yes, ad revenues are down, but so what. We all are good business minds. We make adjustments and I agree radio will live on forever. I remember in 1960 when my sister took a job at the old original Poole-owned KBIG 104 FM, Sunset Blvd studios, we all wondered what fm was. And most of the old timers pooh poohed the thought of fm. AM/FM radio will never die.” – Alan L. Gottfried
1977 LA Times ad

Time for the Radio Hall of Fame

(May 15, 2020) The Museum of Broadcast Communications announced that the Radio Hall of Fame Nominating Committee is now accepting suggestions for 2020 nominees. Submit your suggestions at and click on the Nominate tab.

Every national Hall of Fame story is a painful reminder that Los Angeles, the greatest radio market, has no Hall of Fame to honor their best. It is criminal.

When the Pacific Pioneer Broadcasters struggled to reinvent themselves a year or so ago, it seemed like a natural to embrace this ambitious and rewarding venture. Under the Hollywood Media Professional banner, the group could easily put together an induction dinner once or twice a year. The revenue from participants and guests could be very lucrative, not only covering expenses but contributing to future expenses. More importantly it would put the spotlight on a much-maligned entertainment platform – radio. The museum could be put online, avoiding the costs of a building or structure. Having it online would be a great place to have audio of the inductees, representing their best work.

Let’s give this idea some serious consideration. Too many of our giants are passing.
Hear AcheJohn Lander has an idea for when this quarantine is over, “let’s not tell some people” … KFI’s George Noory joined KLAC’s Colin Cowherd’s weekly podcast. Noory chatted with Cowherd about the mysterious Navy pilot videos recently declassified by the Pentagon, the conspiracy theories around the origins of COVID-19, and the unsolved case of the D.B. Cooper airplane hijacking in 1971 … Denise Madden was saddened that Gary Price had died. Picture in the gallery above was a photo taken at Lee Larsen's (KLOS) going away party in 1983. “Gary was a good man, one we will miss,’” wrote Denise … Alex Gervasi, former middayer at KIIS, has joined Universal Music Group’s Music and Tactics team … Maryann Caruso (KLSX 1997-97) wondered on Facebook if it is really necessary to have a Fleetwood Mac channel on SiriusXM?  … Nancy Cole (Silverman), former general manager at all-Sports KMPC/1540 has successfully transitioned to a career in writing. She has just published her second book in her Misty Dawn series. LARP Rochelle Staab calls Nancy’s new book, “A great escape.” … KROQ starts a new show Sunday night called “Aternalido,” a new Latin alternative show hosted by Anthony ValadezJeff Federman, head of KROQ, explained: “Los Angeles is one of the most culturally diverse cities in the United States and we’re excited to broaden our sound to reflect the musical tastes of our community.” ... Looking forward to Hallmark’s holiday offering A Very Covid Christmas, when a big city lawyer and country candle maker accidentally meet when they go to the wrong Zoom meeting.
Timmy Manocheo found this foto of the Fab Four, perhaps the lads were ahead of the times

Mission Statement

(May 14, 2020) The mission of Los Angeles Radio People is to salute the men and women who have entertained us over the decades. We started around 1957, roughly the start of that music transition from Pop to Rock ‘n Roll and the explosion of Color Radio.

We depend a lot on the LARP themselves to update their activities, but sometimes we discover they have passed. It becomes catch up time, with the help of others, to adequately spotlight their lives. We do it because no one else does. LA Times requires an arm and leg (no pun intended) to publish an obit.

Oh, you might get a Facebook mention for a day or two but we can shine a continuous light on those who are no longer with us in the Where Are They Now section.

Technology, or my careless worked, wiped out the letter L last year. Each entry in Where Are They Now has to be redone. The other day while working on Richard Leos, we discovered he died February 5, 2017, at the age of 80. For almost a decade (1967-76), Richard introduced the Southland to Latin Jazz on Saul Levine’s station, KBCA (105.1). After his radio career, Richard worked as an LA County Probation officer in the 80's and 90's until his retirement, due to a stroke. Richard had been living in Monterey Park.

If you have a photo of Richard or further information about him, it would be much appreciated. And if your entry needs updating, send the info to

Hear Ache

(May 13, 2020)  With radio hemorrhaging listeners during this pandemic, the recent Myers Report asks the question: “Where Have All the Ideas Gone? When Will Media Ever Learn?’ The report suggests very few are focused on the innovative ideas for advertisers to implement, on sponsorship opportunities or more effective ways to connect marketers’ brand messages to relevant content environments … Former KABC and KNX morning man Dave Williams went food shopping in Dallas the other day and saw an X on the floor by the cash register. “I’ve seen too many Road Runner cartoons to fall for that,” he said ... Salem is adjusting to the uncertainty of the economy. The company has temporarily suspended the regular quarterly cash dividend on its common stock. Additional cuts include: reducing travel and entertainment, eliminating open positions and new hires, reducing staffing when appropriate, requesting rent concessions from landlords, reducing employee compensation and requesting discounts from vendors ... Julie Pilat, former pd at KYSR, is learning all sorts of new things during the quarantine. “I learned that Debbie Harry was adopted. I’ve been listening to her book while walking this week,” Julie wrote … Half of podcast consumers in China listen every day, according to the first survey of podcasting in the country from PodFest China. The most popular app is Apple Podcasts … Former KRLA jock Lee Duncan wants to re-install 2020. This one has a virus" … If you visit Pittsburgh, you can listen to Big Boy on WAMO … Ted Ziegenbusch did a fun telephone interview last week about the decade of the 1980s. During the conversation he suddenly remembered something that puts this aging thing in perspective. “We began that decade with no cellphones, no personal computers and radio was our only free source of music. Men had more facial hair, and women had outrageously puffy hairdos. The biggest #1 song for the entire decade was Physical by Olivia Newton John. It spent 10 weeks at #1. If you had your own time machine like the one in Back to the Future, would you go back to the 1980s for a little while? Would you stay there?” asked Ted.

KFI Talks to #1

(May 12, 2020) Nothing in our lives is normal, so why should we expect the ratings to be normal? Talk station KFI returns to the top of the PPM ratings for April '20 in the 6+, 6a-12mid Mon-Sun during the coronavirus pandemic ... In addition to KFI, all the Talk stations had significant increases - KABC (1.0 - 1.4) KRLA (1.4 - 1.8) and KEIB (0.8 - 1.1) ... With the Talk stations realizing these increases, all-News KNX drops (3.8 - 3.4) ... A disturbing trend is the loss of radio listeners. The top 5 music stations all lost over 800,000 listeners each ... Sports stations, with no sports to cover, tanked. KSPN failed to make the list ... KROQ took a precipitous drop to tie with KABC in a tie for 27th. The complete listing of the top 40 stations:

1. KFI (Talk) 4.2 - 5.5
2. KRTH (Classic Hits) 5.2 - 5.2
3. KOST (AC) 5.1 - 4.5
    KTWV (Rhythmic AC) 4.9 - 4.5
5. KLVE (Spanish Contemporary) 4.0 - 4.2
6. KBIG (Hot AC) 4.4 - 4.1
7. KCBS (JACK/fm) 3.4 - 3.5
8. KLAX (Regional Mexican) 3.3 - 3.4
    KLOS (Classic Rock) 3.0 - 3.4
    KNX (News) 3.8 - 3.4
11. KIIS (Top 40/M) 3.9 - 3.0
12. KKGO (Country) 2.5 - 2.7

     KLYY (Spanish Adult Hits) 2.4 - 2.7
14. KSCA (Regional Mexican) 2.3 - 2.6
15. KRCD (Spanish Adult Hits) 2.3 - 2.5
16. KUSC (Classical) 1.9 - 2.3
17. KYSR (Alternative) 2.5 - 2.2
18. KBUE (Regional Mexican) 1.9 - 2.0

      KKLQ (Christian Contemporary) 2.1 - 2.0
      KPCC (News/Talk) 1.9 - 2.0
      KPWR (Top 40/R) 2.2 - 2.0
22. KXOL (Spanish AC) 2.1 - 1.9
23. KRLA (Talk) 1.4 - 1.8
      KRRL (Urban AC) 2.4 - 1.8
25. KCRW (Variety) 1.5 - 1.7
26. KJLH (Urban AC) 1.1 - 1.5
27. KABC (Talk) 1.0 - 1.4
      KFWB (Regional Mexican) 1.0 - 1.4
      KROQ (Alternative) 2.0 - 1.4
30. KAMP (Top 40/M) 1.9 - 1.3
      KKJZ (Jazz) 1.1 - 1.3
      KWIZ (Spanish Variety) 0.8 - 1.3
33. KDAY (Rhythmic AC) 1.2 - 1.2
34. KEIB (Talk) 0.8 - 1.1
      KFSH (Christian Contemporary) 1.0 - 1.1
36. KLLI (Latin Urban) 1.0 - 1.0
37. KDLD (Regional Mexican) 1.0 - 0.9
      KTNQ (Spanish Talk) 0.6 - 0.9
39. KKLA (Religious) 0.6 - 0.8
40. KLAC (Sports) 0.9 - 0.5

Little Richard Couldn't Help It

(May 11, 2020) Bob Lefsetz wrote that Little Richard was a hero to our heroes. Some have called Little Richard a founding father of rock & roll. Would Elton John’s flamboyant garb and persona be accepted if it hadn’t been for Little Richard and his pioneering performances?

Little Richard died over the weekend. If you lived in those music explosive days in 1956-58, your radio was turned upside down and inside out by the pounding sound of Tutti FruttiRip It Up, and Long Tall Sally.

The Beatles recorded several of his songs. So did Pat Boone, sometimes to greater chart success than the originator. (Little Richard later told Rolling Stone that he made sure to sing Long Tall Sally faster than Tutti Frutti so that Boone couldn’t copy him as much.)

I can’t tell you how many times I saw The Girl Can’t Help It, an insipid Jayne Mansfield flick that opened with Little Richard singing the title song. The song was enough reason for repeat visits to the Criterion Theatre on 3rd Street in Santa Monica. Gads, is that what was in store for us in the movies? Forget those movies featuring Big Bands. Move over. It was now our turn. How about Don’t Knock the Rock?

This was now our music and Hollywood was trying to figure out how to integrate this forbidden music into mainstream films. RIP to a true rock ‘n roll personality.

Little Richard was one of the 10 original inductees into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1986.
Brian Beirne, Mr. Rock N’ Roll and longtime K-EARTH personality (pictured with Little Richard), has some warm memories of Little Richard. “I was deeply saddened to learn of the passing of my friend Little Richard. Richard and I went back over 50 years. It was a great honor for me when he asked me to be his presenter at his Walk of Fame induction. Richard worked many concerts for me over the years.”

Brian remembered his favorite memory was a wedding he did for a Newport Beach client. “The client loved my annual Legends of Rock N' Roll Show I did at The Greek Theatre and wanted something on a smaller scale. The lineup included The Penguins, Jack Scott, Phil Phillips and Little Richard. Richard was to do four songs and he wound up doing an hour and twenty minutes. He did not want to leave the stage. It was quite a wedding. Richard was one of a kind and I will miss him.”

Email Saturday, 5.9.2020

** Armstrong the Best

“Thanks for the timely article by Dave Armstrong. I’ve worked for a lot of general managers in my career. Dave was among the cream of the cream.

By far, he was the most encouraging and supportive leader that I ever worked for in Los Angeles or elsewhere. He was also generous enough to share his wisdom with the rest of us. Whenever I would ask ‘why’ he felt a certain way, whatever the topic, I got a straight-forward and fully detailed answer. He never pulled any punches and never sat on the fence waiting for the wind to blow in the right direction.

So his advice is well worth absorbing here. Instead of bemoaning what has come upon us, get to work, be creative and get back to what we all do best. Let’s entertain our audience and remember that it’s all about relationships, on both the radio and in sales.” – Ted Ziegenbusch

** Armstrong Unsung Hero  

 “At last. Someone finally sings for the ‘unsung hero.’ I enjoyed your article on Dave Armstrong. He hired me to work weekends at KWIZ in the mid-eighties. I found him to be kind, gentle and thoughtful.  After having worked in radio through four states and Mexico, I had rarely found that. Dave was kind of like ‘Arthur Carlson’ / WKRP in Cincinnati, except he was smart. 

I am not a Christian, but that did not keep me from noticing that Dave always practiced what he preached. He led by example. Pretty rare in radio then, and less so these days. 

Best to you, Dave.” - Bill ("Daniels") Schwarz, Ontario  

** GM for Polar Opposite Stations

“Great piece on Gary Price. KDAY was his one world as a general manager. KNAC was the polar opposite for him. The fact that he was comfortable and innovative in both formats is the biggest tribute to him as a radio guy. Thanks again for remembering Gary.” – Mike Stark

** Price Ruined Me

“So sad. Gary Price was a straight shooter who ruined me for other gm’s. And, he had the best pipes in the building!” – Long Paul

** Boss Man

“Thanks for the great column on the passing of my general manager, Gary Price. I’m proud to say that I go  to work for him twice: Once from October ’86 to December ’90, then again from 1992 to the end of KNAC in the Heavy Metal format on February 15, 1995. In effect, he changed my life twice [which was sorely needed] after my stints at KLOS, Pirate Radio and a bout with a brain tumor.

Gary was a great manager. What I respected about him most was his ability to make a decision. But beyond that he was an innovator, an astute observer of the markets around him which allowed him to find the niches, measure the risks [high!] and develop the audiences to be served.  He’s responsible for giving life to two formats that the ‘big boys’ ignored, first with the Urban format at KDAY, then with the Metal format at KNAC.  I am heartbroken with the news of his passing, but I am certain that I’m a better person for having known him.” – Thrasher (Ted Prichard)

** Priceless in Many Formats

“So sorry to learn about Gary Price when I checked in this morning. He was part of the KFXM-San Bernardino lineup when I first started listening to Top 40 radio in the early 60’s. He did the 6-midnight ‘Platter Party’ shift and unveiled the new Top 40 survey every Friday night starting at 6. Top 40 radio was so MAGICAL back then. I still remember the lineup of KFXM back when I first started listening to it. Ron Garner did the ‘Rise and Shine’ show 6-10a, Jack Sands was on 10a-2p on the ‘Coffee Club.’ Bill Tanner did the ‘Club 590’ show 2-6pm and Gary Price hosted ‘Platter Party’ 6-mid. George Babcock was on all night mid-6a with ‘Night Watch.’

I met Gary a few times when I was at K/men. He was always a very pleasant guy with a quick smile and obviously had great success off the air. All of the radio personalities of our teen years are slowly riding off into the sunset.” – Bruce Chandler

** Price Start

“Your ‘Where Are They Now’ entry for Gary Price says he was at KHJ/fm in 1971-72. Actually, he was promoted to general manager in May of 1970 after several months working in the sales department.  Price began in radio as a dj at 1290 KPER [now KAZA] in Gilroy.” – Steven Thompson

** Recent Passings

“If it weren'’t for, I probably wouldn't have known that general manager, Gary Price, and talent extraordinaire, Steve Lundy, had recently passed away. They, along with pd Jim Taber, made my time at KROQ the most enjoyable of my career.” – Jhani Kaye

**KIQQ Partner

“I'm sorry to hear about Gary Price’s passing. Loved seeing my old teammate Jim Maddox mentioned. He’s a very nice man.” – Mike Butts

** Investment Opportunities

“At one time, Gary Price and I were very friendly. Eventually we lost touch with one another. He even set up a luncheon with Fred Sands and me and Gary as he wanted me to explain to Fred that radio was a very good investment if stations could be purchased at around eight times cash flow or less. At the times multiples were reasonable. Sometimes the price was 1-1/2 times revenues (less trade and barter). Gary was an exceptionally nice person and very easy to be around. He had no airs and treated everyone with respect. Very sorry to hear he passed away.” – Bob Fox

**Nostalgia Sunday

“I really enjoy the Sunday nostalgia pieces. I especially liked the artwork from KLAC in 1970. If a station took that playlist and played it in that order right now, I would be their loyal listener forever. Of course, there are probably only about six of us who'd listen.” – Tim James, Mr. Procedure

** Hey Sport

“My heart goes out to the radio sports stations but for us older tv golf nuts, Golf Channel is featuring replays of great tournaments of the past. It works because us older folks don’t remember what happened a year or two or five ago. I’ll turn on such-and-such tournament replay and end up watching the whole damn thing because at ‘76 the ’CRS [Can’t Remember Nothin’] has gotten pretty severe.” – Rich Brother Robbin

** What Time Is It?

“This morning I was listening to the news, not on radio but on NBC4. THREE TIMES in one break, the two newscasters told me what time it was, and it was always 6:26! That means three times in ONE MINUTE! I was coached years ago, and have coached others along the way, not to give the time in every break. It just sounds like cheesy ‘puker jock’ radio, but the morning tv shows do it constantly!” – Brian Perez

** Smoke This

“Grand Havana Room in Beverly Hills shuttered for almost two months due to the Covid hysteria!! I worry that bugs may have infested those precious Cubans hiding in those private lockers.

I'm also worried about the CIGARS.” – Magic Matt Alan

** Humble Email

“Thanks for keeping the column going, and I trust you are well and healthy. Seeing the photo of Humble Harve you posted this week reminded me of something I keep meaning to bring up, though you may already know this. He had a major cameo in the low-budget 1980 film The Hollywood Knights. It was a bit of a rip-off of American Graffiti, but has some great early big-screen appearances from the likes of Michelle Pfeiffer, Tony Danza, Fran Drescher, and Robert Wuhl. Humble basically plays himself, manning an all-night sidewalk radio studio, essentially the same role Wolfman Jack did in American Graffiti. Bit of a silly romp overall, so don’t expect Masterpiece Theatre.” – Dave Kunz, Automotive Reporter, KABC-TV, Co-host, “The Car Show,” KPFK
** Country HOF

“As you know, in February, I was inducted into the Country Radio Hall of Fame. The induction ceremony is scheduled for September. One of my former program directors, from my KZLA Daze, is the head of the Country Radio Broadcasters. He has asked all the inductees to submit pictures from our lives and careers. I can across this from my first year as the country editor for Radio & Records newspaper. The picture is important to me because it is the only photo I could find of the pd, Gary Perkins, who was hired from KHEY in El Paso.

He and the new gm, Bert Whalen, came to San Diego and listened to the station for week in a hotel. They went to KSON’s owner, Dan McKinnon, and told him they were going to fire everyone on the station except for the guy doing the Saturday night show: Me. They wanted me to do morning drive. I was 19 and going to San Diego State. McKinnon told them ‘No way!’

Now these two new hires told Dan if they couldn’t do what they were hired to do, they would go back to El Paso. McKinnon said okay but I had to move the ratings up over two ratings books.

In those days the ratings were done four times a year. KSON was 15th in the market. My first book I took the morning show to number seven. The next rating, I was at NUMBER ONE!!!!

Held that rating from 1969 to 1974 when Bob Wilson asked me to come to LA. By the way, Dan and I later became friends and served on the Country Music Association’s Board of Directors several years. Sadly, he passed away a few years ago. But he is in the Country Radio Hall Fame. I hope they hang my plaque next to his. Gary Perkins is sitting at the control board.” – Jim Duncan

** Early Radio

“I’ve been reading your column now for about 15 years. I’m what you would call a radio geek! I grew up in the Bay Area listening to the mighty 610/KFRC and I was smitten by the disc jockeys! I attended Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, and was able to work at their campus radio station back in the late 70s, but I ended up working in television for most of my life.

I am now retired and I’m working as a life coach. The majority of my clients are in their 20s and early 30s. I currently am working with 16 clients, 11 of them I’ve been working with for over 10 years.

Being a radio geek, I have observed the way they listen to music when they drive their cars. It breaks my heart to find out that none of them listen to the radio. As soon as they get in their cars, they go straight to their phone, and stream music from the phone.

One day, one of my clients picked me up in his car to go eat lunch. He had just bought the car about six months earlier. As he was getting gas, I decided to check his presets and see which radio stations he listens to, only to discover that he had not set any presets. When he got in the car, I asked him ‘How come you haven’t preset any radio stations into your car radio?’ He replied ‘I don’t listen to the radio. In fact, I don’t even know what radio stations there are.’

I was shocked. This was a 23-year-old young man born and raised in Pasadena and he doesn’t even know what radio stations there are. The first thing I thought of was ‘Well that’s kind of true because I remember back in the day when cars would have bumper stickers advertising a certain radio station. But you never see that nowadays.’ Besides not seeing bumper stickers, very rarely do you see billboards advertising radio stations and when you go on a radio stations website, they don’t really talk about their station or the djs, they just show you celebrity gossip stories.

I met with one of my female clients, who is 21 years old, at the Chick-fil-A in Burbank. I point blank asked her, ‘Do you ever listen to KIIS/fm?’ She looked at me with a perplexed face and said ‘Is that a radio station?’  I almost fell out of my chair. Back in the 80s and 90s, every girl at that age listened to KIIS/fm to hear to their favorite boy bands. And what made this even worse was that this Chick-fil-A in Burbank is literally located across the street from the KIIS studios!! And here she is, a woman that was born and raised in Burbank, and didn’t know if KIIS was a radio station! 

I have many, many more of these kinds of stories that break my heart. So, I don’t really know where radio is going to be in the future, because so far, my 16 clients, between the ages of 21 and 31, don’t listen to the radio. ‘In fact, I don’t even know what radio stations there are.’ A very sad statement.” – Mike Hubbard  

** Banning Mighty Met

“While going through the FCC digest listings, I came across a station with the iconic KMET call letters. The station is in Banning, of all places and operates on 1490 KHz. It does not do rock music, instead it does a Talk format such as Dave Ramsey and others. I wonder who decided to pick up the call letters or did the FCC just give to them because the letters were available. I am sure a lot of people who follow LARadio will remember KMET on 94.7 MHz, its on-air staff and Rock format.

What a long way from being iconic. Once in a while, I will see an old KMET bumper sticker and think of Jim LaddJeff Gonzer and Mary Turner. What a time!” – Dan Ramos, Joshua Tree

Time is NOW for Radio to Prepare for the New Normal

(May 8, 2020) Dave Armstrong was the general manager at KWIZ, KYMS, KKLA, and KIEV/KRLA/KKLA/KFSH from the eighties through the early aughts. “I had done everything I wanted to do in secular radio and wanted to apply successful principles to Christian radio," said Dave.

He was born and raised in Jefferson, Ohio, about 60 miles east of Cleveland. Dave started his radio career as a dj at a daytimer in Ohio. Once he saw that sales people made more money than announcers, Dave moved into sales.

During the 1970s Dave worked in Erie, at KFJZ-Ft. Worth and KLOK-San Jose. He arrived in the Southland at KWIZ from sister station KLOK. He programmed KYMS-Santa Ana as a contemporary Christian outlet. Between KYMS and KKLA, Dave worked for the Orange County news channel.    

“What we do in Christian radio at KKLA is to teach rather than preach. We’re not church or a replacement for church, but we certainly support the church,” said Dave. “I  like to think that at KKLA we reinforce faith. In the fall of 1998, Salem Communications took over KIEV, and Dave orchestrated the changes to the Talk facility.

In 2000 he converted the KIEV call letters to KRLA. Later, Dave orchestrated the first “Fish” format of Contemporary Christian music to the Salem cluster, a format that’s now heard throughout the U.S. Dave continues in the entertainment world as the COO of BigIdeas.2020. Always thoughtful and forward-thinking, he shared some thoughts about radio post-coronavirus and what it will sound like:

“I believe that what radio looks like when this is over depends on what seeds are being planted now to prepare for the return to whatever normal will be. Are we planting ‘woe is me’ seeds bemoaning how tough it is, or are we planting seeds of hope as we prepare our clients to restart their businesses? Are we preparing our listeners for the same return to ‘normal?’ I want my clients to be ready to hit the ground running when the starting pistol is fired. I want messaging already prepared to let our listeners know that it is safe to come out of our cocoons and resume a semi normal life. If we wait for the opening announcement before we start strategizing, we will be even further behind than we are now!! This will end and I hope radio is ready to fly again!!!” – Dave Armstrong

Hear Ache. Zoom this. A new survey found about half of Americans don’t always wear pants while working from home … In the past, record companies would salute a personality with a unique thank you if they were instrumental in making the song a hit. Morning man Earl McDaniel was so saluted in the late 1950s by the Fleetwoods. Listen here … Sam Rubin was looking for some non-coronavirus news this week on the Channel 5 Morning News. Stop the presses. Most important topic of the day – Hostess snack cakes vs. Sara Lee Frozen Pound Cake vs. Pepperidge Farm Three Layer Cakes + Zingers …  Longtime Talk legend Barry Farber has died after his 90th birthday and 60th anniversary in radio. “It is a very sad day in radio,” said Michael Horn, President of CRN Digital Talk Radio where Barry had been broadcasting nightly for the past ten years. “Barry always said the best show in the world was watching two scorpions in a brandy glass. Sorry to correct you Barry, but the best show was your show.”

Kat Corbett Grew Up with a Double Life

(May 7, 2020) Since the turn of the century, Kat Corbett has been part of the Alternative music scene, mostly at KROQ. She recently lost her midday show, but continues hosting and curating KROQ’s Locals Only weekend show and has interviewed hundreds of artists including Jack White, Metallica, The Cure, and the Foo Fighters.

Recently the tables were turned when KROQ nighttimer Megan Holiday interviewed Kat for her 7 Words podcast. The pair seemed to have the best time, sounding more like two colleagues who admired each other while just sharing stories.

Beginning with my first book in 1994, Los Angeles Radio People, the fascination with LARadio has been the uniqueness of the personalities we profiled. Kat Corbett has a childhood filled with uniqueness.

Growing up in Boston, she lived a Sybil-like existence. From Monday through Friday she lived in the suburbs and attended a white suburban school. From Friday to Sunday she spent the weekend in East Boston with her grandfather, who didn't speak English. East Boston is a very depressed airport town. “During the week, I’m the cheerleader and on the weekend, I’m trying to figure out how to steal shit from the corner store,” she told Holiday. “You never told one group about the other because you’d get your ass kicked. I’d be ostracized in the suburbs for hanging out with low-rent folks.”
Kat’s growing up was filled with music. All kinds. “Some of favorite memories of my dad were listening to the Oldies and reading album liner notes.” She got obsessed with the Who, Springsteen, Van Halen, Prince – and then she found God. “I loved punk Rock and God. I thought my head would explode.” It seemed very clear to Kat that music would play an important role in her life.

Kat had high praise for her father who gave her nuggets that have stayed with her over the years. “My father said that the only thing you really have is your integrity and everything branched out from that – love, work, respect. If your integrity is intact everything else will fall into place.” She said she was so insecure about her double life. “I was a dick in school. It just sucked,” Kat said. “If I say I’m going to do something, I do it. I really didn’t find that with people until I found my people in my first station, WFNX-Boston, and they got me.” Kat’s passion for that first job was actually an internship where her dad had to take her and pick her up, driving a half hour each way before he went to his work. That passion for radio was originally ignited at a Christian religious station. “I was done with religion and was an ex-Catholic.”

The job she got was editing sermons, like splicing out coughs. “And I was learning how to edit. It really lit a fire under me. These people were so lovely but obviously this format wasn’t my passion.” The split lives back in a youthful Boston eventually coalesced into Alternative music and radio in Southern California.

She became a superstar in LARadio, and now you know how Kat Corbett got here. You can hear Kat at SiriusXM on Lithium Channel 34.

GM of Stations in the 70s, 80s, 90s, Dies 

(May 6, 2020) Gary Price, general manager at KHJ/fm, KROQ, KDAY, and KNAC in the 1970-90s, died Tuesday morning, at the age of 86. Jim Maddox, who worked for Price at KDAY, said that he was a great boss. “He trusted you and left you alone but was always there to support you and give you needed counsel."

Gary started as a jock, moved into sales then spent the bulk of his radio career running stations in his native California.

Born and raised in Monrovia, he earned an FCC 1st Class License after a stint in the Korean War. In 1958, he started as the morning man at KPER-Gilroy. While at KFXM-San Bernardino doing evenings in the early 1960s, he tried his hand at sales.

Crosstown KMEN hired Gary as sales manager while allowing him to work a weekend shift. His first gm assignment came in 1970 at KLYD-Bakersfield, followed a year later with a sales assignment at KHJ/fm which quickly turned into gm responsibilities.

When KDAY adopted an Urban format in early 1974, there was a prophecy of doom, but the format was a success. Gary talked about the format switch: "The only people who bought the idea were the audience. We tried something new - no screaming disc jockeys, no street jive."

Did he ever regret the switch from announcing to management? “Sometimes I think it wouldn’t have been so tough if I had stayed a jock.”

Before retiring, Gary worked as a sales consultant for Fred Sands. (Price is seated second from left in KDAY photo ... thanks to Jim Maddox. photo of Gary and his wife Donna provided by J.J. Johnson)

Sports Mics Silenced

(May 5, 2020) Sports radio and tv have really been hit hard by a pandemic that virtually has killed all live sporting events. Collateral damage are the sports voices. No games to call.

In an LA Times feature story by Jack Harris, he details what the guys are up to. Some highlights from his story:

Joe Davis, television play-by-play voice of the Dodgers, was preparing to call the Pac-12 men’s basketball tournament games in Las Vegas for Fox Sports, when he got the call telling him he could broadcast games from a studio in Los Angeles. Joe was eating a steak dinner at a Vegas casino. “Joe didn’t want to believe that the center of his professional universe would disappear –  the entire sports calendar – including college basketball games and an eagerly anticipated 2020 Dodgers campaign, would be delayed for the foreseeable future.”

On March 12, Davis couldn’t believe the tournament would be cancelled but other conference tournaments started to shut down. “One became two, and as we all saw, it snowballs so quickly to the point that we’re going home.”

Davis has been in self-isolation along with the rest of Los Angeles’ sports broadcasting community. “In a lot of ways, the grind of broadcasting defines our lives, those of us that are in baseball miss the grind. So that missing link leaves a huge void. I don’t think you can probably fully appreciate it until it’s taken away,” said Davis. The lives of play-by-play broadcasters revolve around the regimented sports calendar.

Most have side gigs. Davis and Kings play-by-play voice Alex Faust call college games for Fox Sports while Faut also works events for the Tennis Channel that occupy their offseasons. Clippers play-by-play voice Brian Sieman was gearing up for his team’s playoff push when the NBA season was put on pause. “I lived through the lockout back in 2011 and that was hard because other sports were playing. But this is so catastrophic.”

Davis has taken to the grill. The barbecue buff has recipes for smoked brisket, full port shoulders and more. He started a podcast with Dodgers analyst Orel Hershiser.

Radio in a Riot 

(May 4, 2020) In times of turmoil, conflict, catastrophe, radio does what it does best. Radio is a conduit for immediate information. Voices can be calming in tragedy or heartache.

In 1991, Casey Bartholomew was 21 years old and a Fullerton College Prep student. He was the board-op at KFI for Dr. Laura Schlessinger. In late 1995 Casey joined KFI co-host Scott Hasick for an evening weekend talk show.

During the O.J. Simpson trial Casey provided regular updates to KFI's “John (Kobylt) and Ken (Chiampou)” afternoon drive show.

Name a top-rated Talk station in a big market and Casey has done fill-in work. He provides a seamless voice for an emergency shift or vacation fill-in for all the top markets. But this is a real story, perhaps being part of a real story. Casey has been on the frontline of many big stories. This story comes from his time at KFI. It was 1992.
“I was sitting at the KFI studios in a part of Los Angeles known as Koreatown. Not a good area.

Earlier in the day, a jury acquitted the cops who beat the crap out if Rodney King.

By the time I got to the station to run the board for Barbara Whitesides, it was about 6 p.m. We watched on a small tv, in the producer’s lounge as all Hell started breaking loose, and the L.A. Riots started.

By the time I was done with my shift, around midnight, I couldn’t drive home because they were shooting at cars on the freeways. The station put us up at a hotel around the corner. On the short drive over, there were trucks driving by, filled with National Guardsmen.

I stayed up most of the night, and watched the news. Eventually, I fell asleep. At 4 o’clock in the morning I heard a very loud noise, and thought the hotel was under attack. I pulled open my window, on the 8th floor, and was looking directly into a helicopter. I took a shower and turned the news back on.

By the time the sun came up, they said things had calmed down. So I walked back to the radio station. It was creepy outside. I drove home, thinking it was all over, and saw smoke from various fires all over the place. I got home, took a nap, and drove back to the radio station that afternoon.

It was then that things really took off. Buildings all around the station were set on fire. We went on the roof – before they told us not to – and saw fires all around. We could hear what we thought were guns going off. When people started looting, we covered up the sign that said KFI - KOST, so that they wouldn’t know there was lots of expensive radio equipment inside. That night, I looked down from the third story window onto 6th street. I saw a National Guard soldier walking down the street. When he looked up and saw me peering out the window, he raised his gun at me.


The next days were spent getting the story out, and eating food from the vending machines. By the time I could leave, again, things still weren’t good. But at that point, it was more about stealing things than hurting people. So, I was able to get home.

It was a horrible time. BUT, it was also one of the most exciting times I have ever had in radio. It proved to me that Talk Radio is the single most important medium that we have, and it got me hooked.

TV has to make sure that they have the ‘shot,’ and that everyone has their make-up on. Newspapers are a day late. Even websites can’t be completely trusted, and they may not even be on the scene. But talk radio is there. Right now. Every time. Talking to the people. Creating the backdrop. Feeling the immediacy. And TELLING THE STORY RIGHT AT THAT MOMENT. Yeah, I don't have a regular gig right now. People have asked me why I don’t try and do something else. My answer is always because there is nothing else like it. I would be bored out of my mind doing something else. Radio is the BEST medium. Talk is the BEST format. Anybody who tells you different hasn’t really LIVED as a broadcaster. Okay. My vent is over.” – Casey Bartholomew

Hear AcheBob Applegate, former KPPC personality in the 70s, needs your prayers. He’s announced he is having major surgery today to have his remote surgically removed … With Cinco de May happening tomorrow, production whiz Jim Duncan noticed a sign on his favorite taco stand: “Sorry, we’re closed due to short staff.” Jim noticed an attached note: “Hire taller staff cause I need a taco!” … Ira David Sternberg has a couple ideas of what to do while sheltering in Las Vegas: pretend you’re a Vegas entertainer by performing live on Facebook and make your own 99 shrimp cocktail.

LA Times KLAC top hits of the 60s Memorial Day Weekend, 1970. KLAC  was five months before changeover to KLAC Country.   
.... thanks to Bruce Wojcik of Monterey Park for the artwork

Email Saturday, 5.2.2020

** West Word Wrong

“Sorry to say that I do not share Randy West’s devastating account of radio today, but all due respect to him, he’s looking over the hedges. We’re down, as we were in 2001, then 2008, but we’re certainly not out.

The talent that still blasts through the arteries of the business is not where it should be, but we’ll adjust to this.

And syndication, my corner of the business for decades, is still the hotbed of creativity in the industry while many deride it as the Ivan the Terrible of job loss. In fact, most of what MannGroup Radio, my company, and so many others provide are services to stations that might not have the money, time or energy to provide in-house. More so, we’re providing free webinars and syndication services focusing on public service and ideas that stations can use to make it through this crisis, not bowing our heads and praying, but facing it and creating new wins that were never there. Radio can do what very few other media can do: live and work locally.

Yep, that’s coming from a national syndi guy, but focusing on the local issues, that’s where it's at, Randy. And most of us do exactly that. Yes, yes, radio is researched to death and listeners are going elsewhere. How long have we heard that old saw? I say Tune In, Drop In, Stay In.” – Ed Mann

** Is Podcasting the Future?

“Having read Mike Stark’s comments about the future of radio, it seems he believes the future lies in podcasting. I doubt it. I have no ideas with respect to the future of the radio industry. What I do know is that commercial radio will have to find a manner in which to provide compelling programming and sell advertising in order to support the stations. Have not a thought how that will happen but I do know that debt has to be manageable based on revenues.” – Bob Fox  

** Radio Observations

"Radio has changed even before Covid19. With KZLA gone for years, what KKGO has become has made Country music listening a bit harder. With Shawn Parr not being heard on the radio makes things even more tough. Even though Bryan Douglas is at KNX, I still remember the days when he was doing nights at KZLA and for a short time doing mornings at KKGO. The djs on the air seem hard to listen to.

With KRTH doing Classic Rock when we already have two stations doing Classic Rock, isn’t that enough? I miss the old days.

I remember a site, that no longer exists. It was the best streaming Country music site ever. You could request a song by calling a phone number and leaving a voicemail. Depending on time of day you might not have to wait long to hear your request. Their variety was absolutely amazing. If terrestrial radio is going away, and even if it isn’t, we need more sites like this. We need our fearless djs like Shawn to come back in some capacity.  

KNX, our main news outlet, has been doing an impeccable job during these rough times. I think they should have one or two segments per day where they cover other local news like a big fire etc.  What will happen post covid19? who knows really. But at least we have our people who keep informing us.  Whoever wishes to reply to these thoughts, and I want comments should send them to If you’re a radio personality, when you reply, and you sign your name, please add the station you work for.” - Chananya Freedman
** Jerry Bishop Remembered

“I was sorry to learn of Jerry Bishop's passing.

For a short period of time, in 1979, we did a show together on KIIS AM. Jerry was wonderful to work with and I enjoyed doing the show immensely. He was a great talent and a very nice person.” – Tom Murphy

** Music Special

“I want to offer my thanks to you once again, as your column produced immediate results in my search for ‘The Top 100 of the 60s.’ Thank you so much for publishing this bucket list item of mine in Saturday’s column. I received a couple of emails almost immediately, and I’m happy to report I have secured a pristine copy of this special.

I am so grateful to Norm GarrMichael Hagerty and Dave Mason for reaching out and making this a reality.

But of course, none of this would have been possible without you and your offer to post my request. I can’t begin to thank you enough. You and your column have worked your magic again!” – Bob Balestieri

** Everyone Safe at Home?

“I really look forward to your daily column and the Saturday emails. Many, many good people opening up to us with their thoughts, hopes and dreams for radio.

I’d like to know which Los Angeles announcers are broadcasting from their homes vs. from their station’s studios at headquarters. To start the list I know that Bill Handel and Tim Conway at least are at home. I’m guessing that the KNX anchors are all in studios at HQ.

I’ll guess that Jack is either at home or in the JACK/fm van parked at a local Jack-in-the Box restaurant. Also, between 6 a.m. and midnight Mon-Sun, I’d like to know which shows are LIVE on the air vs. being voicetracked.

Thanks also for sharing your kid’s adventures…both good and bad. Happy Grandparenting to you! It’s fun isn’t it?” – Steve Nieto, Yorba Linda

Radio a Great Service in Difficult Times

(May 1, 2020) Someone once said that Randy West must have been vaccinated at birth with a phonograph needle. Radio was everywhere in his life. Growing up in New York, he was chapter president of WABC’s "Cousin Bruce" Morrow fan club. 

His start in commercial radio came just weeks after finding proving his mettle at his college radio station at CCNY. The trick for the next three years was to take only morning classes - a hodgepodge of courses - in order to be on the road in time to get to WRNW in Briarcliff Manor in time to do his afternoon drive shift.

After working for a number of New York area stations while earning his degree, Randy was happy to accept program directorship at WFIF-New Haven. There, his 'Sound of America' format during the U.S. Bicentennial year earned a Billboard Magazine cover story.

Randy came to the Southland in 1979 to work with Joey Reynolds as promotion director for Wayne Newton's record label, but he was never far from a radio microphone, joining KMGG (Magic 106) as production director and later on-air talent. 

During the 1980s he appeared on nine different TV game shows, and set his sights on pursuing a career in announcing and audience warm-up, inspired by announcer Johnny Olson. After some tough years, he broke though announcing Hour Magazine and The Chuck Woolery Show. Randy went on to work alongside game show hosts including Wink Martindale, Bob Eubanks, Dick Clark, Ben Stein and Bob Barker on CBS' The Price is Right during 2003 and 2004.

For many years he was the announcer on the traveling Price Is Right live game show. His passion for all projects is quite enthusiastic and contagious. Randy’s love for radio gives him the perfect perspective to answer the question on what the heck Southland radio will sound like after the coronavirus stay-at-home orders are lifted. Randy’s essay:
"The future: Twelve disc jockeys voice tracking for the millions as, one-by-one those millions tune out forever.  The fault, dear Brutus, lies with those who took flavorful ingredients, and baked nothing more exciting that audio white bread.

Ahhhhh, radio. I'm still carrying an ember of the torch for my first love. Especially vulnerable as she's approaching age 100, it looks like she's succumbed to the coronavirus. The old girl thrived with very other force majeure - floods, fires, earthquakes, hurricanes, even that morning on 9/11. Radio answered the call and became indispensable during many of these catastrophes, while scoring points with the community. This time, Covid-19 has her down for the count.

Heartbreaking. There's such a defeatist attitude. Where's the coach, the trainer, cheerleading for radio to get back up and fight? I bet Erica Farber hasn't thrown in the towel. The bulk of radio advertisers are closed, I get it. But there's another kind of advertising - business branding, building an image now, for when the world resumes. Public service advertising, and public service programming - live and local, addressing listeners' wants, needs and fears.

During World War II, when all the auto plants were making equipment for the defense department, Ford ran a winning campaign that stayed in people's minds. There were no cars to sell, but the ad campaign was memorable: "There's a Ford in your future." One of the creatives at the agency that birthed the campaign, Al Howard, told me it moved the merchandise when cars became available, actually creating waiting lists at dealerships. Is there any application for that in this crisis?

Hey. it's easy to backseat drive, I know. And hell, I've happily been out of radio long enough that perhaps I have no clue about the state of the industry. And maybe I underestimate the extent to which the corporate owners danced with Wall Street to leverage themselves to the brink before this challenge. But if the reaction is to slash staffs, cut budgets, kill promotional spending and play 1,000 hits in a row, commercial free ... well that's just going to speed the demise of a once great service. Yes, it once served communities during challenges. It's a big part of radio's great legacies from its heyday. - Randy West

Hear Ache. George Johns says the economy is so bad that his neighbor got a pre-declined credit card in the mail and concluded that a picture is now only worth 200 words …Magic Matt Alan ran out of toilet paper and is now using lettuce leaves. Today was just the tip of the iceberg … Great to hear Kevin Fleming on the KPFK pledge drives. He’s the program director … The Los Angeles Daily News has done a wonderful story on the new KROQ morning team of Stryker & Klein. You can read it here.   

The Answer? Brian Whitman, in making the announcement that he was taking a leave of absence from his KRLA (870/The Answer) morning show with Jennifer Horn, wrote on Facebook: “I’m not quitting, I’ve not been fired and ... I haven’t tested positive for Covid-19. I wanted you to get this information from me because you are an incredibly important part of my life. I know the folks I work for and those I work with won’t be able to share this personal ‘stuff’ about me. I don’t want you to wonder and please do not worry. I will be fine. I’m taking time away because my body and my mind are telling me it’s necessary. On the air, I’ve discussed anxiety I’ve been dealing with and sleeplessness and stress. The resulting mental fatigue is overwhelming and it creates physical fatigue. Often, I’m in physical pain. At 47, I’m prepared for some of this. The consistency of all of the above means I need to feel better.” 
Today at noon, Shadoe Stevens invites you to join him for a movie in your head, a wide-screen, world between your ears with funny ideas, features and characters. 
"It’s filled with optimism, and makes fun of fear, doubt, and gloom," said Stevens. "Like a movie, it's composed with an original soundtrack and 3D sound design
so you can see it come to life in your mind, especially when you listen with earphones. 

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