Monday, March 31, 2008
Tuesday, March 25, 2008
Here's an amazing story about a guy who got gigs opening for RZA and Dead Prez from Craigslist ads.....
Check it here.
PS: looking for a good cover band/bar band/blues band/southern fried wedding band? Check here.
Mitt Romney's Mormon church didn't believe African Americans were actually created equal, until 1978, when one of its elders had a revelation.
G.W. Bush had great praise for two ministers who said that 9/11 was the result of gay people and abortions. And wasn't one of his great spiritual advisors, who spent nights in the White House, the Rev. Ted Haggard, who spent money on a gay prostitute?
All week on radio, Barack Obama has been Swift Boated by the steady play of speeches by his longtime pastor, Rev. Jeremiah Wright. Not only have the Fox, we distort so you can't decide crew been beating the drum, but I heard Howard Stern turn on Obama too.
He of all people should know better, but I fear he is a reflection of the common man, the ones who got conned in the last election into thinking that a war hero was a coward, while a war dodger was a hero.
It's scary to hear this relentless, orchestrated attack on the promising candidate. It certainly speaks to the fact that there really is no left wing media. This is all controlled by the right wing, and the message is being bashed into the heads of voters, whether fair or not.
I even head Bill O'Reilly admit it wasn't fair, but play Wright's speeches anyway.
Fair and unbalanced, indeed.
If we're going to make what a candidate hears in his place of worship an election issue, I only wish there was an equal airing of the Great Mullahs of the Christian Right, Pat Robertson, Jerry Falwell, Bob Jones and Ted Haggard.
And while we're returning to the dark ages, let's debate how many angels fit on the head of a pin.
Here's a good salon.com story.
Monday, March 24, 2008
What do you think? What does this mean for commercial radio, as the move was strongly fought by the National Association of Broadcasters?
In the height of a recession, I'm not sure it means much. It's going to be harder and harder to get people to spend more money on radio, when they can barely afford gas.
The stock market sure likes it.
Sunday, March 23, 2008
Tuesday, March 18, 2008
READ THIS STORY IN THE LA TIMES
Only here can you hear the rest of the story, as Paul Harvey says.
I set this article up for my LA Times friend, introducing him to these two former Santa Clara County cops who have become private eyes....and are on the case of a mysterious UFO spotted not far from my home.
No, I didn't set up the drone picture. There are enough people who take the picture seriously to pay these guys to search for this mysterious telephone pole. Personally, I know what can be done with photo shop, and am skeptical.
Two of my favorite quotes got cut from Glionna's story by editors, (who are too often drones themselves).
One was TK Davis's theory of why UFO hunting is back in, with shows on the history channel and magazines devoted to them. He said that with all the controversy in hard news, and the way the country is split, UFOs provide some relief. Also, he said, they are aliens that no one is condemning.
And, there are all kinds of interpretations of what the writing on the drone says here.
My favorite had me laughing out loud: "All your base are belong to us." The editors-surprise- didn't get it.
The other speculations show there is great humor in the techie world (Invasion from planet Jiffy Pop; Martians for Obama).
PS: TK Davis tells me his website has had 1,000 hits already today; and the story was picked up by Good Morning America.
Wednesday, March 12, 2008
Whites have taken so much from black culture that it's great to see one of the masters getting his due. Maybe this will help keep the legacy of one of the greats alive. Walter is on the back burner of so many mainstream listeners, but his legacy is honored by the likes of Carlos Santana (who used to check into hotels under Walter's name) and Eric Clapton.
This one brought a tear to my eye, I guess the way that the induction of Dave Clark would affect aficionados of the British Invasion.
An aside: I met Ben Harper early in his career, in 1995, when he was unknown in the US, but big in Japan. We did an interview and he gave me his home number and said that if I was ever killing time at 3 a.m., I should give him a call because he was bored waiting for flights to Japan at that hour.
A couple of albums later, he was huge everywhere.
Tuesday, March 11, 2008
New York's governor, who got busted in a prostitution sting making arrangements with $4,500 hookers, had done a big payola investigation on New York radio stations.
So, it's only natural to hear jokes such as: "He really did know about pay for play."
And one local wag: "His defense? He was researching a book on hypocrisy in the prostitution biz."
According to Radio Ink blogger Tom Taylor, "Spitzer also put Emmis’ Hot 97, New York into the stocks for public humiliation in 2005, claiming that a stunt called “Smackfest” required a state license for promoting a combative sports contest. Hot 97 said the participants had signed waivers, but Spitzer kept the pressure on until Emmis wrote a $240,000 check to the state and a $60,000 check to the Safe Horizon community service group."
Monday, March 10, 2008
Radio talk show host and cash hustler Michael Savage had a bad day in court Friday, as a California judge took a dim view of his suit trying to bar the Council for American-Islamic Relations from using a tape of four minutes of his show to collect donations.
The San Francisco Chronicle was the only local newspaper to bother to cover the suit, which Savage has funded with donations from 25,000 of his suckers, uh, listeners.
Read it here.
Then, blogger Bill Bowman picks up on the suit here, with some editorial positions.
Savage attorney Daniel Horowitz, who claimed to be a liberal, argued that CAIR violated the doctrine of fair use of copyright material, because it used it as an attempt to raise money.
U.S. District Judge Susan Illston of San Francisco leaned toward CAIR"s argument, which relied on a precedent set in San Francisco, where Hustler magazine sued Jerry Fallwell for using one of its cartoons for fundraising.
Savage often uses taped material on his show, in much the same way. While he doesn't link it to fundraising, there is constant fundraising on his show, for his lawsuit, and in the past, for the Paul Revere Society, the nonprofit he started that had its nonprofit status revoked and which has not publicly reported what happened to the nearly $1 million it raised.
Savage, who has no journalism training or backround, years ago sued the University of California when he was denied an interview to be the Dean of the School of Journalism. That suit was thrown out.
The biggest question here is, how could 25,000 people really have donated to this snake oil tent show hustler?
Thursday, March 6, 2008
Tuesday, March 4, 2008
Brian Maloney, in his Radio Equalizer blog, lists people calling for Farid Suleman's resignation as head of Citadel which aquired the healthy ABC radio chain last year and is now dismantling it for profits.
Suleman paid himself $17 million last year, at the same time that he is cutting his stations' budgets like a kangaroo with a weedwacker. And, let's not forget where he spent a fat chunk of change last year: on the poor man's Howard Stern, Don Imus. (Does anyone listen now that he's back?)
Those in Bay Area print media are seeing a similar cut in quality from the carpetbagger Media News head Dean Singleton, who is cutting the Mercury News and its sister papers into oblivion. At the rate he's going, the SF Chronicle will be the Bay Area's only daily.
Monday, March 3, 2008
The first big name layoff came down today, when morning show cohost Melanie Morgan was let go this morning and said farewell during her 5 a.m. to 9 a.m. show. (Correction, from Melanie: She didn't get to say goodbye: my source on this was wrong.)
I'm shocked by this one. Not only is she the wife of KGO operations manager Jack Swanson, but she is a very compelling, very prolific talk host in her own right, who as she says, "leads with her chin out."
As a late convert to conservatism, Morgan has had a convert's zeal for the political right side of the dial. Yeah, she could be shrill and run on emotions more than facts.
But you have to admire the fact that she organized protests and led groups of soccer moms and political zealots whose actions were as loud as their words.
It wasn't just talk for Morgan, and for that I admire her. You could argue with her facts; not her passion for her beliefs.
I don't doubt that she is hugely marketable. If KNEW-AM had some money, she'd be a huge asset over there, where their morning team is a pair of old music radio deejays who are simulcasting in SF and Sacramento, and who, to me, are not that compelling. There is always an amateurish tinge to their show, like they know they are in way over their heads.
But add Morgan to the mix...and it could be incendiary.
Morgan hates the fact that I always allude to her husband when I am talking about her, but he is one of the most powerful men in radio and was for a time the program director of her station, as well as sister station KGO. Now, Ken Berry oversees KSFO and Swanson told me today that he didn't know his wife was laid off until 10 a.m. when she told him.
As much as I have trouble believing that, I do tend to believe Swanson. I don't think he's ever lied to me.
And I think it's scary to see someone of her caliber and notoriety go.
Can radio attract more listeners by getting rid of good talent? Answer: No.
Have you heard of any other layoffs?
More on Morgan here: A press release she sent out.
SAN FRANCISCO) – Renowned radio personality and national conservative leader, Melanie Morgan, delivered her final broadcast on talk radio powerhouse KSFO 560 AM today – Monday, March 3, 2008.
The owner of KSFO radio, Citadel Broadcasting, decided not to renew Morgan’s contract as part of the company’s announced across-the-board financial cost cutting.
Melanie Morgan has been a fixture on KSFO for the past 14 years, enjoying a run from 1994-2008 that far exceeded industry standards for longevity.
During that time, Morgan emerged as one of the nation’s most dynamic conservative activists, using the radio airwaves to motivate listeners who shared her passion to take action and fight for causes important to them.
Morgan’s on-air activism included an effort that removed the carcinogen MTBE from gasoline in California, launching of the historic Recall Gray Davis campaign that led to the election of Arnold Schwarzenegger as Governor of California, and co-founding the nation’s largest pro-troop organization, Move America Forward (website: www.MoveAmericaForward.org).
“It has truly been an honor for me to work at KSFO for the past 14 years. What I loved most about my time at KSFO was that it allowed me to connect with listeners and take action to make real changes in the world,” said Melanie Morgan.
“We never had a one-way dialogue with our listeners, and we never believed that we had to resolve ourselves to accept the status quo. We got out of our chairs, left our homes and offices, and circulated petitions, rallied for our troops and met with government leaders.
“We did all this to make sure that we left an even better world for our children than the one we had inherited from generations before us,” Morgan said.
As part of her ongoing conservative activism, Morgan has traveled to the Middle East twice to interview U.S. Troops stationed in Iraq and Kuwait. Her broadcast efforts from Iraq resulted in her winning the Associated Press’s Mark Twain Journalism Award, and The Peninsula Press Club’s award for Best Interview or Talk Show.
“Meeting our troops who are on the frontlines of the war against terrorism stands as the most powerful experience in my broadcast career,” said Morgan.
Morgan’s career with ABC began in 1981 when she was a television reporter for KGO TV. In 1984, she became an on-air personality for KGO radio where she worked for six years before switching over to ABC-San Francisco sister-station, KSFO 560 AM, co-hosting the Lee Rodgers and Melanie Morgan show. In 2006, Citadel Broadcasting acquired the ABC Radio group. She has reported on the scene from the Marine barracks bombing in Beirut, Lebanon; the Mexico City earthquake; and the Tiananmen Square massacre in China.
Melanie Morgan says her focus in the days ahead remains unchanged: She will remain a conservative activist leader.
“My commitment and dedication to serve as a leader in the movement to support our military men and women continues to grow, and I am very proud to serve as Chairman of the pro-troop non-profit group, Move America Forward,” Morgan said.
Melanie Morgan is not compensated for her work with Move America Forward, a fact since the group was first launched in 2004.
Morgan will also continue her weekly column for the news website www.WorldNetDaily.com and will continue to serve as a television analyst on news programs on cable and broadcast television stations and networks.
“My passion and commitment to the troops who are fighting in Iraq, Afghanistan and around the world are foremost in my heart.
While I will miss my good friends Lee Rodgers and Officer Vic, and our great producer Sheri Yee, I am excited to stay close to the conservative grassroots. And I’ll always lead with my chin out,” Morgan concluded.
Starting today on KNEW-AM (910), you can hear Bill O'Reilly at 10 a.m., the slot vacated by Dennis Miller; Lou Dobbs from noon to 3 p.m. and Miller from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Rusty Humphries moves to 10 p.m. and Lars Larson to midnight to 2 a.m.
Not that many people tune into the low-rated conservative talk station, which keeps shuffling and reshuffling the deck and still can't crack into the Top 20 in the Bay Area (where competitor KSFO-AM (560), with Limbaugh, Schlessinger and Hannity has been lodged for years.
Miller was hoped to bolster mid-morning ratings, but didn't catch on here, any more than he did on Monday Night Football. Evenings may work better for him. The station might do better if it simply broadcast Michael Savage 24 hours a day, like Sirius does with Howard Stern.
Or maybe it could just broadcast the rants from a mental institution, Hyde Park's speaker's corner, or Scientology headquarters. Same content.
Sunday, March 2, 2008
"Citadel Broadcasting today (Feb. 29) brought home a very bad report card
and the big guy, chairman of the board and CEO Farid Suleman, says things
are going to change. And change fast -- beginning this week and over the
next two weeks. It could get ugly.
Citadel had a fourth quarter net loss of $848 million, Citadel losses were
“primarily attributable to lower revenues in our San Francisco, Calif.;
Washington, D.C.; Chicago, Ill., etc.
Suleman said that Citadel began instituting major restructuring of the
company’s major markets this past week and will continue over the next two
weeks. The restructuring will “create a very significant savings in costs
and position the stations for major growth even in a zero-based growth
environment,” he said, adding that because of the changes, the company will
offer no financial guidance for the year.
“There is at least $20 million of potential cash flow from assets that are
just not producing any cash flow right now. There is another $15 to $20
million in streamlining and expense reductions to make the company more
responsive to the market,” Suleman said. “2008 is the time and it will all
be done before the end of the first quarter. “
Suleman said, “You want to get every opportunity to perform. The environment
is such that you don’t have too much time so there could be changes across
the board,” Suleman said. “The time for talk is over and it is now time for
the walk. We will have a plan to get everything done in next three to six
months and we expect to see major changes in 2009 and 2010. But everything
will be done in 2008,” Suleman concluded. "