Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Some of Your Mid-Week Comments

The business sure has changed, Kent, and not necessarily for the better. Technology actually is hurting radio. (PPM and huge corporations ...) When I speak to kids in college, it's hard to be "upbeat" about my industry. I LOVE being on the air ... that's the saving grace to me.
Regarding "legendary WLS", funny story: Although I grew up in Los Angeles, I'd heard of WLS all my life. Ya see, Dick Biondi started there the year I was born, 1960. He had been in Buffalo, NY, while my dad was in Rochester, NY, and they knew each other. I think my dad was always envious then when Dick arrived in LA, I got to hear about it all over again! (Even though my dad was already working for Desi Arnaz on the Mothers-in-Law, he always loved radio.)
I hope to have more fun on-the-air when I move down the dial soon! Thanks, Kent.
Dave Fogel
P.S. Regarding morning radio, I did what I was told to do. There's not much "freedom" these days.
My point exactly. Why would anybody go through the bother of hiring good, quality on-air talent and then allow them to only give out the call letters nine times per hour during their 60 and 90 second breaks? Talk about a complete waste of talent! (And airtime!)
Let us know where you land and we'll help to spread the word. Thanks, Dave. (kk)
UPDATE: Well, that didn't take long!!! Dave Fogel has already landed at K-Hits, filling in on nights until further notice. Gone is George McFly (about the only guy on the station that I could stand listening to! I can't handle the one-time superstar morning team of Eddie and JoBo for more than about three minutes ... and usually that's only to hear Eddie's Senseless Survey. The rest of their morning shtick makes for the WORST morning program on the air today. Plenty of good talent out there that would better fit the station. Heck, give it to Little Tommy and have Larry Lujack call in once a week ... my guess is the ratings would go through the roof ... and certainly eclipse WLS-FM's retro-move of bringing back Brant Miller!)
CBS had big things planned for the station ... I think they thought they could create another WCBS-FM here in Chi-Town ... but the on-air staff is so disconnected with this music that they can't sell it. (Rumor has it they've been close to throwing in the towel a couple of times already.) In addition to the above-suggested morning move, why not put Tommy Edwards in charge of programming the station ... at least he KNOWS this music (and has some affection for it.) The spirit of the music just doesn't sound right when it's presented by a bunch of guys who clearly don't know or care for it.
Ironically, K-Hits Program Director Todd Cavanah told Media Reporter / Analyst Robert Feder:
“When you work the classic hits format, it's important that you love the music you play."
How true, how true. Maybe Todd ought to tune in to a couple of the other programs he's currently airing at the station. Much too often it sounds like a very bad mash-up of today's high-energy DJ patter playing the well worn-out hits of the '60's, '70's and '80's ... with VERY heavy emphasis on the '80's. Todd, people listening to this station don't really care about the the on-going Lady Ga-Ga / Madonna feud ... or the latest Taylor Swift and Rihanna show-biz news ... if you're going to program a classic hits / oldies station, do yourself a favor and read Forgotten Hits and Ron Smith's website in the morning ... and then better prepare your jocks to talk about the music and the artists that they're actually PLAYING on the station. (kk)
>>>Take a listen to what I have been doing on my web site, -- I think you'll like it. (Bart Shore)
-- Whoa, some creativity there, rare stuff and all! I even missed some! Tell Bart, thanks!
If, as Michael LaCrosse suggests, Chicago NEEDS an Oldies Station, there would be reason why someone like CBS Radio wouldn't park itself there and make tons of money. But, as I know, since there are NO 100% OLDIES stations, in my (NJ) listening range, there is little money to be made. I even told CBS, they don't gain listeners and ratings with their Greatest Hits music, but by the (near daily) prizes (such as 100% paid vacations) they offer their  listeners. THAT'S what people are tuning in for ... NOT the music.
NO ONE is playing strictly '50's music, these days - maybe a 2-3 hour specialty show here and there or on the weekends, but that's it. Looking at WLS's recently playlist, it looks biased towards what is claimed to be Classic Rock. I see no artist, such as Chubby Checker, in the mix. I'd be more a fan of a nice mix, new and past. 
These days, I find FM radio is headed towards the extinction of AM radio, because of numerous "Talk" shows now running on FM! 
Oh, and one last thing, you can now receive Internet radio stations on a table-top radio (even as a USB stick w/o internet access). So, as you can see, commercial radio has it tough keeping its head above water!!!Best,
CBS DID park itself here ... but with limited success thus far.  Chicago has always been a BIG oldies market ... we've had successful oldies stations here now for about thirty years ... so the city is primed for it.  (Right now we've got at least half a dozen stations competing for the same audience with a very similar format.  Unfortunately, the current game in town seems to be "Who can play the most Steve Miller songs in a three hour period" rather than offering up something different in the way of creative, entertaining programming.  That's our biggest beef ... radio seems to be content on simply cloning and re-cloning itself ... with no respect whatsoever for its listening audience.  (kk)
Love the column this week.
Eddie Brigatti is a close friend and I'm so glad he will be with the Rascals performing again.
Great coverage on it all.
Just back from shows in Philadelphia and the very cool Hershey Park, PA. with my pals The 1910 Fruitgum Company and original lead singer of The Ohio Express Joey Levine.
Continued success, bud.
Rock on and keep the music alive and kicking.
Ron Dante

Hey Kent,
My brother Jim has just released a book about his Lettermen years and losing his voice. You can’t put it down cause there’s some good things in it. It’ll be on bookshelves soon. Thought your readers might be interested.
Lettermen / Reunion,
Gary Pike

Yep, another album BUT ... unlike "Retrophonic 3" that I desperately needed to sell, this one is a download album and only means pennies in my pocket! It was put together from many of my CDs by K-Tel and it is available on iTunes. To hear snippets, just type my name and then click "see all" (Albums) and you'll find it around the middle of the page ("Music To Give You The Creeps").
Thanks and Happy Halloween!
Davie Allan
Here's a list of up-coming screenings of the excellent "Wrecking Crew" documentary. If you get the chance to see this when it comes to your town, please do ... you won't be disappointed. Highly recommended! (kk)
October 13th - 7 PM -
Paul and Daranne Folino Theater
Orange, CA
October 24th and 25th - 6:45 PM -
Paul and Daranne Folino Theater
Scottsdale, AZ
October 27th - 3 PM -
Alhambra High School
Martinez, CA
October 28th - 6:30 PM -
133rd Audio Engineering Society Convention
San Francisco, CA
November 3rd - 8 PM -
Empress Theatre
Vallejo, CA
November 7th - 8 PM -
Arlington Theater
Santa Barbara, CA 
November 11th - 3 PM -
California Theatre
San Bernardino, CA 
November 13th - 2 PM and 8:30 PM
Pickford Film Center
Bellingham, WA
November 15th - 2 PM and 7:30 PM
Princess Theatre
Prosser, WA 
As discussed above, you don't get to see (or hear) much from the late '50's and early '60's anymore ...
So this new link from FH Reader Clark Besch was a welcome surprise!  If you're a fan of this "vintage" music, I think you're really going to enjoy these!  (kk)
Check out these vintage videos before they are gone!  
A couple of weeks ago we told you about a gathering to get together the largest group of people ever to perform one song. The song was The Beatles' "Love Me Do" ... and the place was Liverpool, home to The Fab Four way back when ... and now FH Reader Frank B. offers you the following challenge:
Kent ...
Before you read it, guess how many people were there to sing " Love Me Do ? "
Frank B.
Well, the OLD record was 897 ... so if they BROKE the record I'm guessing they had to have at least 1200-1500 people there. But the REAL question now is ... how many of them were playing along with the harmonica part??? (kk)