Tuesday, August 11, 2009


I’ve been saying for a few years now that guys in khaki pants have ruined NASCAR and radio. Let somebody else figure out NASCAR. I think there might be someone out there right now that will figure out radio. There are a couple of things taking place right now that have had me thinking that what’s going on right now is really great, and really bad. We just have to wait out the really bad for now. Let me ask you something; are you hearing the same things in your town from your station that I’ve been hearing? Really uninspired radio. Here in Jackson, Mississippi, I sampled the two country stations during the mid-day and 7-midnight shifts. One was touting 40-minute music sweeps, and the other had an all-request lunch-hour that didn’t air a phone call while I was listening. The night guy comes out of a break and asks, “So what were you doing in 1991, when this came out” and plays Garth. Where was the phoner of someone...anyone …even the guy hollering, “That was the year I got out of Parchman Farm!” Jumping Jesus, who cares? Last week I made the trek up north to visit my Harley mechanic and was listening to the Clear Channel classic rocker out of Memphis while having some work down on my baby. Mid-day gal with great pipes doing station promos and 15 second “personality” breaks into the stop sets. Nothing there. Probably voice-tracked. Who cares? Two years ago while in Dallas doing PM drive, a programmer stood in front of me and said, “If we’re talking, we’re losing.” Market 5! I said, if we’re not entertaining, we’re losing.” I was gone several months later, so the point became moot, and alas, I missed emails that automatically generated and came right into the studio to let you know your breaks were longer than 30 seconds, regardless of how bust-yer-ass/wet-yer-pants amusing it might have been. Good thing I was gone because there probably wouldn’t have been anywhere for me to hide. So, with this type of programming, and the huge blood-letting that has taken place since then, you have to ask yourself, how can anyone be creative or entertaining in that environment? A couple of years later, we have our answer. I’ve been watching with interest what Jerry Del Colliano has been reporting about what they’ve been doing to their sales staffs at Cumulus, and you start to wish for a flood, or locusts, or that virus that left Will Smith as the only guy left alive in New York without a gland problem. Some of us in my Face Book family have been thinking that the worm might be turning after we heard that Larry Wilson had just bought the CBS cluster in Portland. Baby step. Guys like Larry, Ed Christian, and John King are the good guys that somehow need to be at the helms of flagship companies that will once again make us proud of what we do and what we can yet accomplish. John King has a freaking tattoo of a microphone on his arm, even though he told me and Buddy Scott it hurt like hell (If you tell, I’ll deny ever saying it.) We would go through burning buildings for guys like this…broadcasters. For now, all I see is this sea of mediocrity run by malicious men and Judy. I’m sure everyone has their own “beginning of the beginning” date in their head. A guy that I worked for in Buffalo a long time ago, Jim Meltzer, said on my FB page the other day, “Tony, it’ll be here next spring.” Spring is a great time for new beginnings. Isn’t it? I hope he’s right. I’ve already brought all my khaki pants to Goodwill.

1 comment:

  1. Tony

    I'm hearing ya bud. I'm being let go ( after 8 1/2 years and a 10 share) offered up my services to a crosstown rival, and he said they were going to launch a new format on the station with no morning show and sweepers. Inventive! Total genius! That should have my replacements laughing in my old air chair. Why even bother?