Thursday, December 14, 2017

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Class of 2018

From this morning's RAMP Newsletter...

The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame is proud to announce that Bon Jovi, The Cars, Dire Straits, The Moody Blues and Nina Simone are the five artists selected for induction in the Performer category, and Sister Rosetta Tharpe will be recognized with the Award for Early Influence.

This year's nominees also included Kate Bush, Depeche Mode, Eurythmics, The J. Geils Band, Judas Priest, LL Cool J, MC5, The Meters, Radiohead, Rage Against the Machine, Rufus featuring Chaka Khan and The Zombies. According to Variety, Bon Jovi received more than 1 million fan votes. The rest of the top five fan vote winners were the Moody Blues (950,000), Dire Straits (616,000), The Cars (553,000) and Judas Priest (539,000). Artists can be nominated 25 years after the release of their first commercial recording.

The 33rd Annual Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony, presented by Klipsch Audio, will take place on Saturday, April 14, 2018 at the Hall of Fame in Cleveland. Ticket on-sale dates will be announced in January. The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame 2018 Induction ceremony will again have its television premiere on HBO, and a radio broadcast on SiriusXM. Broadcast details will be announced in early 2018.

Here are my favs from the new members...











Todd Manley

WGN Radio promoted Todd Manley yesterday. He is now the station manager. Robert Feder has the details.

I interviewed Todd a few years ago (2015) in the Illinois Entertainer.

You can read that interview here.

Host of New Premier League Soccer Show on NBCSN


Would you believe it's...Joe Scarborough?

Did not see that coming.

The show debuts on December 26th.

More Creeps Revealed

Tavis Smiley (suspended by PBS)

Morgan Spurlock (self reported)

and

Russell Simmons (this one sounds really bad)

Disney Buys Fox

This is a mega-mega-merger. Disney is buying all of 21st Century Fox (and the 20th Century Fox library), including the television network. Basically everything that is labeled Fox...except for Fox News.

Also, James Murdoch (Rupert's youngest son) is leaving his dad's company to join the new Disney company--possibly as the head of television--and Robert Iger is staying on as CEO for a few more years (he was scheduled to retire next year).

I'm still processing this one. It's out of left field.

Doubting the intelligence, Trump pursues Putin and leaves a Russian threat unchecked

Scary story in today's Washington Post. It's about how Trump's insecurity regarding Russian interference is causing the administration to essentially ignore the threat.

The story is well sourced and contains lots of detail.

Today's the Day

Despite everyone's best efforts, and an unprecedented barrage of negative criticism, the FCC is still determined to destroy the internet today by dispensing with Net Neutrality.

This, despite some of the news below...










The Klapper

I met an old high school buddy yesterday for a beer at Peggy Kinane's in Arlington Heights, and who did I run into? My former Loop program director Bill Klaproth! Good to see him again. It's been years.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Genuflections

Eckhartz Press author Bob Herguth was on WGN-TV this week discussing his book "Genuflections". Good stuff. Congrats Bob, and thanks to the good folks at WGN-TV.

Watch the video here.

Get your perfect stocking stuff Christmas gift here.

Harvey Weinstein Was My Monster

This is a pretty powerful essay by Salma Hayek in today's New York Times.

It explains what she had to agree to in order to film the movie "Frida"--which eventually won a few Oscars.

Not Exactly Mr. Popularity

And this is during a time of peace and prosperity. Imagine if one or the other goes haywire...


Bob & Marianne Let Go By WLS

This news just across the wire, via Robert Feder...

A push by Cumulus Media to solidify WLS AM 890 as a conservative talk station is forcing out the husband-and-and-wife team of Bob Sirott and Marianne Murciano as midday co-hosts. Their show has been airing for the last year from 10 a.m. to noon Monday through Friday.

Starting January 1, WLS will add a Washington-based syndicated talk show hosted by Chris Plante from 9 to 11 a.m. and return Rush Limbaugh to a live broadcast from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., the station announced Wednesday. Limbaugh has been airing on delay from noon to 3 p.m.

I guess that officially ends the Rick and Dave on WLS-Radio experiment too. Oh well. It was fun while it lasted.

The Loser in Alabama: Steve Bannon

Looks like Republicans know who to blame for their loss in Alabama. This could be the end of Steve Bannon's reign...






Even this guy might be turning on him...



RIP Pat DiNizio

From the RAMP Newsletter...

We received the sad news of the passing of Pat DiNizio, lead singer/songwriter of one of our favorite bands, New Jersey's own The Smithereens, who gave us such hooky hits as "A Girl Like You," "Blood and Roses," "Behind the Wall of Sleep," "House We Used To Live In" and "Only A Memory," to name a few.

According to Deadline.com, DiNizio had been recovering from injuries sustained during a fall. Tragically, he passed away just days after indicating via Facebook that he was looking forward to returning to the road.

A Facebook post from Smithereens bandmate Dennis Diken read, "Today we mourn the loss of our friend, brother and bandmate Pat DiNizio. Pat had the magic touch. He channeled the essence of joy and heartbreak into hook-laden three-minute pop songs infused with a lifelong passion for rock & roll. Our journey with Pat was long, storied and a hell of a lot of fun. We grew up together. Little did we know that we wouldn't grow old together. Goodbye Pat. Seems like yesterday." DiNizio was 62 years old.

Women Are Dressing Up Their Boobs To Look Like Reindeers

This is actually a thing. They expose one boob, paste on antlers and eyes, and the Rudolf-red nose is already there, if you know what I mean.

Allure Magazine wrote about it, and has some pictures.

Go ahead and click it. Your browsing history will only say Allure Magazine. It's a women's fashion magazine. "What? I happen to really love fashion, honey. Pardon me for trying to share your interests."

Ron Coomer

Robert Feder has the details of Ron Coomer's deal to stay in the Cubs broadcast booth...

Chicago Cubs color analyst Ron Coomer signed a three-year contract extension Tuesday with Entercom sports/talk WSCR AM 670 to continue alongside play-by-play announcer Pat Hughes. “Ron is one of the most talented analysts in baseball and we are honored to have him on our team at The Score,” Jimmy deCastro, senior vice president and market manager of Entercom Chicago, said in a statement. “Ron brings the passion and success he had as former MLB All-Star to the airwaves of Cubs baseball and hits a home run with Cubs fans.” Coomer, who spent nine years in the Major Leagues (including one season with the Cubs), joined the Cubs Radio Network in 2014.

This Could Get Ugly

And it should.

I'm talking about the FCC open meeting tomorrow. They have unleashed a whirlwind by vowing to get rid of Net Neutrality without any hearings or any mandate. The vote still appears to be a lost cause (there are three Republican FCC Commissioners already saying they will vote yes--and that's all they need), but the meeting is going to be flooded with protestors and the nation has woken up to what is happening.

The Democrats in the U.S. Senate are finally on the case. From Inside Radio this morning...


In their no holds barred letter, the senators call Pai’s plan “reckless” and “radical.” “Your proposed action will amount to the largest abdication of the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC’s) statutory responsibilities in history,” the letter says. But that’s just the opening paragraph. The Senators accuse Pai of throwing the FCC’s main responsibility to protect consumers and the public interest overboard – along with consumers themselves. “In short, you are walking away from your statutory duties and effectively eliminating FCC oversight over high-speed internet access,” the senators say.

The biggest complaint about Pai’s rollback plan is that it will allow internet service providers, or ISPs as they're called, to block, slow down or manipulate a consumer’s access to the internet – as long as it discloses those practices. But within what the senators call “mounds of legalese” contained in the Commission’s Restoring Internet Freedom order is also a provision that prevents state and local governments from adopting their own open internet protections. “It is not enough for the FCC to turn its back on consumers,” the Senators write. “You willfully plan to tie the states’ hands to prevent them from protecting their own residents.”

Pai has said he favors the “light-touch” regulation from earlier eras but the senators say that ignores the pervasive role the internet plays nowadays, when American homes and business rely on the web for everyday activities. “Your plan ignores the central and critical role that access to a free and open internet plays in Americans’ lives and the role that the nation’s expert communications agency should play with respect to the networks underlying that access,” the letter says. Even the Bush-era FCC had more teeth in its open internet policies, it adds. “The future of the internet hangs in the balance,” the senator conclude, calling on Pai to “abandon this radical and reckless plan to turn the FCC’s back on consumers and the future of the free and open internet.”

Meanwhile the FCC is preparing crowd overflow rooms at its 12th Street SW headquarters to accommodate what it calls “significant public interest” in the issue. As their name implies FCC Open Meetings are just that, open to the public. Once the Commission Meeting Room fills up, members of the public and press will be shuttled into overflow rooms, to watch a live video feed of the meeting – as long as space is available and attendees clear security. There will likely be plenty of protesters so the Commission is imposing a maximum size of 11 inches by 17 inches for signs attendees can bring into the rooms. There’s also a stipulation that the holder keeps the sign in front of his or her body to not obstruct anyone else’s views.

Why are they doing this--something that literally nobody wants them to do? There's only one possible reason. Keep an eye on where they work after their time in the FCC is up. (Chairman Pai already worked for the telecom giants BEFORE he got this job). It's pure and simple corruption, and it stinks to high heaven. Three people are destroying your internet, and there's nothing we can do about it, because the people we can complain to are the very people that are doing it.

Morrow & Smyly

The two news Cubs (Brandon Morrow & Drew Smyly) sound like names that could be featured in an Olde English poem..."Tis but a quandry on the Morrow," said the Smyly miller's wife.

Details about the two pitchers are here.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Catching up with Steve & Johnnie


Steve King and Johnnie Putnam recently did an appearance in their old timeslot, visiting with Nick Digilio on WGN Radio.

Among the subjects they discussed that night? Eckhartz Press' stunning novel "Safe Inside" by Lee Kingsmill.

Listen to it here.

Get your own personal copy of the book here.

Joe Welk

I lost a dear friend over the weekend, Joe Welk. I wrote about him on the Green White Soccer Club website and facebook page. Joe and I coached/managed together for the past eight years.

Green White lost one of our most valuable members over the weekend--Joe Welk. He was just a few days shy of his 49th birthday. Joe was more than just a member of the club. All four of Joe's kids played for Green White, and he was a tireless volunteer, willing to help out whenever and wherever he could. At the time of his passing he was the director of girls travel and the manager of two teams (the U18 girls, and the U15 boys). Over the years he has served us in so many ways, as a rec league coach, a boys and girls travel coach, the youth board treasurer, and the boys league director.

But Joe was so much more than that. He was a constant calming presence, always there to greet players and parents with a smile and a kind comment. He was beloved by his players, his fellow board members, and his fellow coaches, managers, and parents. Losing Joe is a big loss to our club, but it's obviously an even a bigger loss to his wonderful family. Green White sends our love and support to the Welk Family; Melissa, Michelle, Kimberly, Ashley & Chris. We intend to honor Joe next season, and we'll be announcing how we plan on doing that at our Christmas party.

In the meantime, we've been flooded with people asking about funeral arrangements, and asking what can be done to help the Welk family. The arrangements are as follows...

Visitation Thursday December 14, 4:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at Friedrichs Funeral Home, 320 W. Central Rd., (at Northwest Highway) Mt. Prospect, IL 60056.

Funeral Friday, December 15, 9:30 a.m. from the Funeral Home to St. Emily Church, 1400 E. Central Rd., Mt. Prospect, IL 60056 Funeral Mass 10:00 a.m.

(His obituary is here)

The U18 girls team is leading the way in starting up a GoFundMe page to help out the Welk Family. Click here to contribute.


This photo was taken last summer in Germany. Joe's on the far left. I'm on the far right. Gonna miss him a lot.

Gut Wrenching Plea from Alabama Dad

Jimmy's Health Care Reminder

More Creeps Revealed

Donald Trump, president of the United States

New Yorker Reporter (and CNN Contributor) Ryan Lizza

NFL-Network analyst (and former player) Marshall Faulk

University of California Regent (and former CEO of Westwood One) Norm Pattiz

NPR host Tom Ashbrook

Morning anchor of "Good Day LA" Steve Edwards

And...

A Wisconsin Radio host who revealed himself. Tom Taylor's NOW column has the news...
WHBY’s Josh Dukelow did something pretty astonishing, says the Appleton Post-Crescent. On Friday’s late-morning “Fresh Take” show, he told listeners he’d behaved badly in the past, that he regretted it, and that he hopes more men will come forward during this national conversation about behavior. Sounds as if Woodward Communications was surprised. It’s the owner of WHBY Kimberly/1150 and its translators at 106.3 and 103.5 in Appleton and Oshkosh. GM Kelly Radandt says while the company knew Dukelow would be talking about “the topic of sexual harassment, we were unaware of the admission, or specific information he planned to disclosed.” Put yourself in Woodward’s shoes, when Josh took off his headphones at 11am – how do you proceed, after such a confession? Radandt says “We immediately began gathering information and have had several conversations with Josh.” Woodward says it never logged any allegations of sexual harassment by Dukelow, who joined the staff only recently, after running for mayor of Appleton in Spring 2016. And what is Woodward’s response, so far? Josh still has his “Fresh Take” job. He was off-air yesterday, but should return today. In a followup statement, Dukelow says that in 2015 (before WHBY), he’d touched a female friend’s body in several places, put his arms around her and kissed her, without permission. He says “This example highlights the fact that terms like ‘sexual assault’ and ‘sexual harassment’ are not narrow and specific. They cover a wide swath of behaviors.”

Uber Accidentally Charged a Passenger $14,000 for a 21-Minute Ride


Whoops.

Time Magazine has the details.

In fairness, it was in Toronto, so we're only talking about Canadian Dollars. I'm sure the conversion rate is about $700-1.

100 Greatest Christmas Hits

From this morning's Radio Online...

MeTV FM (87.7 FM)/Chicago has joined a growing list of affiliates who are giving listeners 10 hours of "The 100 Greatest Christmas Hits of All Time." Listeners will hear commentary from the hit-making stars themselves as legendary broadcaster, Wink Martindale, supplies the stories and fun facts in this annual countdown.

"The 100 Greatest Christmas Hits of All Time will be making spirits bright for a second straight year on MeTV FM," said Chicago Program Director Rick O'Dell. "The mix of holiday standards and surprises, celebrity greetings and Wink Martindale's instantly familiar voice and inviting personality are an ideal fit with the timeless and memorable music our listeners have come to count on whenever they tune into 87.7 FM."

Monday, December 11, 2017

This made me happy


Another Creep Revealed

This time it's a celebrity chef--Mario Batali.

Four different women are accusing him.

Just Sayin...

When Sarah Sanders tweeted that it was ridiculous to give credit to Obama for the economy, Obama's former speechwriter retorted with a thing I like to call..."Facts"


Soccer Brawl

Yesterday was the Manchester Derby--Manchester United vs. Manchester City. It's a grudge match, no doubt. Although I don't think it's quite ever ended this way before...


Two New Baseball Hall of Famers

Jack Morris and Alan Trammel were voted into the Hall of Fame over the weekend by the veteran's committee.

Morris was a post-season superstar for several teams including the Tigers. Trammel was his teammate and won 4-gold gloves and a World Series MVP award. I have no problem with either of them getting into the Hall.

Ex-Fox News Anchor Accuses Trump

Juliet Huddy says that Trump kissed her on the lips without permission around the time of his marriage to Melania.

The New York Post has the details.

Honestly, I've never felt better about my life-long decision not to be a hugger/kisser. There will be no stories about me like this. I'm a handshaker. I even used to shake hands with my grandmother.

Cold fish? Perhaps. In trouble for excessive hugging/kissing? Never.

Wanna Feel Old?

Check out this Inside Radio piece about the future of "Oldies" radio.

Coming soon to an oldies station near you: Songs from the 2000s.

Now where did I put my walker?

Net Neutrality Protest

From Tom Taylor's NOW column this morning...

Tomorrow is “Break the Internet” protest day. Some groups opposed to FCC Chairman Ajit Pai’s planned Thursday vote to totally reverse the Net Neutrality policy he inherited from Tom Wheeler aim to bring the issue front-and-center to all users. Here’s what the organizers say – “This Tuesday, December 12, ‘Break the Internet’ on your site, on Twitter, Tumblr, YouTube or in whatever wild creative way you can, to get your audience to contact Congress.” It says “That’s how we win.” It claims that sites including Etsy, Pinterest and Reddit are “already working to drive calls and messages to stop the FCC.” That’s reminiscent, says John Eggerton of Broadcasting & Cable, of the “SOPA/PIPA online slowdown protest” of January 2012. That worked, though it appears more sites were on board for that (protesting the Stop Online Privacy and Protect IP acts) than for “Break the Internet.” See the organizers’ page here. There’s still protest inside the FCC itself, from the two Democratic Commissioners. Jessica Rosenworcel slams the Commission’s refusal to provide documents to the New York State A-G about the alleged identity theft around public comments about Net Neutrality. Rosenworcel says the agency’s letter to A-G Eric Schneiderman “shows the FCC’s sheer contempt for public input.” But this is likely to be another 3-2 vote – unlike the 2015 Net Neutrality decision, a vote to dismantle it.

We have to mobilize, people. These bastards are really going to hand over full control of the internet to three or four companies to do as they wish.

Bobby in Blue Island

A few photos from yesterday's Bobby Skafish appearance in Blue Island. Great turnout. Bobby sold out his books...

Mitch in Elmhurst

A few photos from yesterday's Mitch Michaels appearance at the Elmhurst History Museum (at their Disco Demolition exhibit)...Very cool place. I believe the exhibit is there through the end of the year. You should go visit if you get the chance.

Friday, December 08, 2017

Minutia Men, Episode 76


EP76 – Rick and Dave discuss smart condoms, German parenting tips, mustard on pop tarts, Prohibition at Wrigley Field, and Rick’s brush with British Royalty.

Listen to it here.

37 Years Ago Today

This is how I heard the news. I'll never forget it.

I agree with...Joe Walsh?

Not the first time I've agreed with Joe Walsh, but definitely the first time I've agreed with THIS Joe Walsh...


Switching Parties

A prominent conservative switches parties and becomes a Democrat...because of Roy Moore.

Read his opinion piece here.

Here's another piece, this one in the New York Times. Conservative columnist David Brooks writes: "The rot afflicting the G.O.P. is comprehensive — moral, intellectual, political and reputational. More and more former Republicans wake up every day and realize: “I’m homeless. I’m politically homeless.”

Tyler Chatwood

The Cubs have a new pitcher and his name is Tyler Chatwood.

His stats are not very impressive, but you have to remember that he pitched at Coors Field for the Rockies. If you look at his stats away from Coors, it's pretty darn good.

Read all about him here.

Gone But Not Forgotten


This month's Illinois Entertainer is out and features my column about the Chicago media figures we lost during 2017.

You can read it here.

Sherman and Tingle

From this morning's RAMP Newsletter...

The Sherman & Tingle morning show on Hubbard Classic Rock WDRV (97.1 The Drive)/Chicago recently held their 2nd annual live broadcast and fundraiser, "Operation: Santa PAWS" in partnership with PAWS Chicago -- an organization dedicated to building no-kill communities -- to collect food, new toys, and cash donations for those animals that don't have homes or families for the holidays.

To help raise money for this life-saving cause, the guys did a live broadcast from "a local Jewel-Osco location" in Skokie, IL on Saturday, December 2. Hundreds of Sherman & Tingle loyalists turned out to support the cause and donate carts full of pet supplies and cash. All told, the effort raised $10,300 in pet supplies and monetary donations.

Commenting on this successful venture, Sherman & Tingle said, "Again this year, we are proud to have been a part of an event that helps so many homeless animals during the holiday season -- and all year long. Our listeners are the best, and we are deeply grateful for their support and generosity." Pictured during the remote, (Front row, l-r): Sherman & Tingle Producer Jill Egan, Brian Sherman and Steve Tingle. (Back row, l-r): PAWS Chicago rep, The Drive night jock Phil Manicki and afternoon dude Steve Seaver.

FYI: I just interviewed one of the gentlemen in this picture, Steve Seaver, for my January IE column.

Delilah Returns to Lite-FM

From Radio Online...

WLIT-FM (The New 93.9 LITE FM) returns syndicated personality Delilah to the Chicago airwaves. Effective immediately, she joins the iHeartMedia AC outlet weekdays from 7-11pm. With more than 150 radio stations, she's the most listened-to woman on radio in the U.S. Delilah has quite a resume, winning a Marconi Award, being inducted into the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) Broadcasting Hall of Fame and the National Radio Hall of Fame.