Friday, December 29, 2017

Todd Manley


Radio Ink has a nice interview with new WGN boss Todd Manley.

Todd's a very nice guy. Wish him the best in his new role as the station manager.

RIP Rose Marie

As a long-time fan of the Dick Van Dyke show, and a Twitter follower (she was pretty active on Twitter, believe it or not), I was bummed to hear the news of Rose Marie's passing. She was 94 years old. The Washington Post has a great obit. I love this part...

Ms. Marie sang in a series of movie shorts including “Baby Rose Marie, the Child Wonder” in 1929 and appeared on vaudeville circuits until vaudeville’s demise. Among her friends was one of the country’s most notorious gangsters.

“My father worked as an arsonist for Al Capone,” she told People magazine in 2016. “He used to burn down your warehouse if things weren’t going the right way, but I didn’t know that at the time. I was a child star and to me Al was my ‘Uncle Al.’"






Northwest Indiana Press

Thanks so much to Tom Lounges for this mention in his year end column at nwi.com...

This was a year when a lot of folks felt the need to tell their stories, as books by and about some of the Chicago music scene's movers and shakers were published. Popular radio DJs became first time authors as they led the pack. Bobby Skafish ("We Have Company: Four Decades of Rock and Roll Encounters") and Mitch Michaels ("Doin' The Cruise") each dropped their titles via publisher Eckhartz Press.

The same is true of John Records Landecker, who updated and re-issued his previously-released 2013 autobiography "Records Truly IS My Middle Name" (Eckhartz Press), to tie-in with his being inducted this year into the National Radio Hall of Fame and being awarded the Hoosier state's prestigious Sagamore of the Wabash Award. Landecker is a resident of Michigan City. FYI: eckhartzpress.com.

Thursday, December 28, 2017

People Love Minutia Men



Over 22,000 downloads, and the reviews are coming in from around the world. These are just from this past month...

A Podcasting First
in iTunes by Chubby Smalls from USA on December 27, 2017
This is the only show that could seamlessly weave in topics as diverse as testicular fungus, psychosomatic heart attacks, and the sex life of widows into one episode and make it entertaining. Great job! Highly recommend and will be listening again!


Funny and mentally stimulating
in iTunes by L4999 from USA on December 26, 2017
Makes you laugh while making you think!


Listen!!!
in iTunes by 94MK from UK on December 26, 2017
Top Podcast by two Hosts who are really easy to listen to The episodes fly by and are very nicely broken up. Personal favourite is the section about the Cubs and baseball as someone Who doesn't really know baseball I found this easy to understand and fun. The rest of the podcast is easy going chat that is great to listen along to and you'll find yourself wanting to respond. Great podcasting from either side of the pond ๐Ÿ‡ฌ๐Ÿ‡ง๐Ÿ‡บ๐Ÿ‡ธ


Amazing!
in iTunes by alfsmith23 from USA on December 26, 2017
This is a great show. Highly recommend!


A lovely listen
in iTunes by Besd1 from UK on December 26, 2017
This is a really enjoyable wander through bits and bobs of life, with two very welcoming and interesting hosts.


Misfits
in iTunes by Cashhmonet from USA on December 24, 2017
Really entertaining ! Definitely binge listening for the holidays! Keep up the great work


Fun Podcast
in iTunes by LaughingLuchadores from USA on December 23, 2017
This is just an all around, well produced podcast. It is a lot of fun and although they talk about some Chicago based things it is still relateable to someone like me who isn't familiar with Chicago at all.


Great podcast!
in iTunes by Akshay-Blood on the Rocks pod from UK on December 22, 2017
These two are ace! Some great chemistry, stories, and solid humour go together a treat!


This Show Is Fantastic!!!
in iTunes by RayGFX from USA on December 17, 2017
I recently came across this show and i simply cant get enough, ive binged through 17 episodes already!!! These 2 guys have great chemistry, great production and one hell of an awesome show!! I highly recommend you hit that subscribe button you will not regret it!!


Easy Like Sunday Morning
in iTunes by Ericsubpar from USA on December 7, 2017
Really great laid back podcast. Super funny with wonderful topics. I loved hearing real talk from other dads. And these two have the greatest voices of any other podcast I listen to. Kick sand, Ira Glass.


This is funny
in iTunes by Mainethepain from USA on December 6, 2017
Had me from the beginning. Good show guys don’t scream at Santa guys.


good for morning commute
in iTunes by grandmastersmack from USA on December 4, 2017
reminds me of old school talk radio without the annoying music. good for a 30 minute commute to warm up your brain


Very soothing voices
in iTunes by The Hoopers Podcast from UK on November 28, 2017
I know this sounds flippant, but I very much appreciate that both speakers had excellent 'podcasting' voices. Don't underestimate that; great for paying attention and soothing to fall asleep to at the same time. Perfect! I envy you.

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

RIP DIck Orkin

So sad to hear about the passing of the greatest radio advertising man in history. Below is my interview with Dick Orkin back in 2012. Thanks to Robert Feder for mentioning this interview in his Dick Orkin obit...



Dick Orkin is the owner of the Famous Radio Ranch, and one of most acclaimed radio commercial actors and producers of all time. He worked in Chicago radio at WCFL in the late 60s and early 70s.






Rick: I still think WCFL in the 1960s was one of the best radio stations of all time.

Dick: I agree.

Rick: How did you get in the door there?

Dick: Ken Draper (photo) was a program director in Cleveland prior to that, and I worked with him there. When he moved on to Chicago, he invited me to come work with him again, and I accepted his invitation. We were together there for a few years.

Rick: Did you realize while you were doing it how special that place was--the sheer amount of talent in one place at one time--I mean here it is more than 40 years later and I'm still asking you about it.

Dick: I recognized very quickly that Draper had assembled a great group. It was a great station for talent; Jim Runyon, Barney Pipp, Jim Stagg, Ron Britain.

Rick: Tell me about the creation of Chickenman. How did that start?

Dick: The origin of Chickenman was the direct result of the popularity of the television show "Batman". It was huge. It was camp. It was fun. Draper decided that each of the DJs should choose a campy superhero mascot, and for the Jim Runyon show, we came up with Chickenman. I sort of based the character on the Broderick Crawford sheriff character--that sort of straight, know it all delivery of his. It seemed like a fun thing to parody. It began with that. I wasn't thinking about a chicken.

Rick: A good twenty years after Chickenman ran originally, my alternative rock station was still running it. It really did transcend the time and format, didn't it?

Dick: Oh yeah, no question about it. The funny thing is, it wasn't intended to run for that long. We were thinking maybe a month. That was the way Draper ran things. His style was to run with something for the short term, and then replace it with something new, to stay as current as possible. No one seems to remember that all of the personalities at the time had their own superhero mascot. Ours was just the one that caught on.

After it did, Draper decided to syndicate it from WCFL for a few years until I left the station, and then I bought it. Even after I left, it continued to run as a serial, and I continued creating new episodes. It probably still runs on a dozen stations or so. My brother, who handles that now, will still get an occasional call from radio stations around the country.

Rick: Chickenman, of course, wasn't your only radio serial. You also did "Tooth Fairy". How did that one come about?

Dick: I only did Tooth Fairy as a follow up to Chickenman. It was requested by Draper. If I'm not mistaken, the Dental Association wanted a short term thing, a PSA sort of campaign, and it also became popular, and turned into a full fledged serial. Tooth Fairy ran on more stations than Chickenman did, but it didn't have the same life.

Rick: In the early 70s, you made the decision to leave radio--at least the structured world of working at a radio station. What led to that decision?

Dick: Well, the changing of programming at WCFL was the main thing. A radio rep firm came in and decided the musical format needed to change, and those changes didn't allow for enough time to keep Chickenman. It was really that. They did change their mind about it, but I wasn't comfortable with the new format. Plus, I was production director by then, and that just wasn't as fun for me. I also wanted to go into business for myself, and I found a partner that was willing to do it with me, and the timing just seemed right.

Rick: I think it's safe to say that your radio advertising work is just as famous, if not even more famous than your earlier stuff. Everybody has a favorite Dick Orkin spot. What have you figured out in those dialogue spots that no one else can seem to figure out? Is it the writing, the acting, the timing?

Dick: I don't know how to answer that. I just did it. You know, my background was in theater--I went to the Yale School of Drama. So I was far more interested in the dialogue, and creating real characters. My partners and I, first Bert Berdis, and then Christine Coyle (photo), would discuss our days and what was happening to us, and that's where a lot of those ideas came from. Real life. Our characters and scripts were based on people we knew. Our families and friends.

Rick: In 1978, you decided to relocate to Hollywood--the current home of the Famous Radio Ranch. What was the reason you did that?

Dick: The bill collectors were chasing me (laughs). Just kidding. It was the weather. Honestly, I was suffering from respiratory problems, and the weather was just making me sick. That's really the reason we moved out here.

Rick: There are fewer and fewer advertisers focusing on radio advertising these days. What is it that they are missing about radio's potential impact?

Dick: I don't think they see it as a theater opportunity. There are no limitations to radio--they don't think of it that way. Radio has the advantage of creating any stage you want, with a limitless cast of characters, in any location in the world, your imagination is your only limitation.They're so stuck in that straight spot with a single announcer. Their concept of dialogue is a rote, 'he said, she said' thing, and they don't really deviate from that.

Rick: Your list of admirers is long and distinguished. At least a dozen of my previous interviewees have mentioned you as an influence. Whose work do you admire, then and now?

Dick: Back then I was an admirer of Bob & Ray and Stan Freeberg, and people like that. I always loved the husband and wife team Stiller and Meara (photo). I actually got to know them for a period of time and we frequently talked to one another in New York and Chicago. They did a Blue Nun commercial that really changed radio in the late 60s, early 70s, which, by the way, was also based on their own experiences and their own lives.

As for who I admire now, I really regret that there isn't anyone I can think of. I wish it wasn't so. When I hear spots on the radio today they are usually pale imitations of sitcoms.

Rick: You're in several broadcasting Halls of Fame, but in 2010 you asked the NAB to take down your plaque in the Broadcast Hall of Fame because you didn't want to be associated with Rush Limbaugh after his tacky comments in the wake of the Haiti earthquake. Do you still feel that strongly about that?

Dick: There was a whole series of things he said, that was just the last straw for me. It hasn't changed. He's still out there with his foul-mouthed racist attitudes. The foul mouthed stuff didn't bother me. I always loved Howard Stern. It's the racist stuff--there's just no call for that. But Rush just doesn't know when to stop. And the targets he chooses--like the college student Ms. Fluke. He just attacked her again the other day. He has a marvelous opportunity--there are so many pompous and stupid politicians to make fun of, but he's so pompous himself, he can't recognize the opportunity. He's a great talent, but that talent is simply wasted doing what he's doing.

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Minutia Men, Episode 78


EP78 – Rick and Dave discuss the happiest women, half-pint movie critics, a German banker’s dream, Just One Bad Century roulette, and Rick’s brush with Darlene Love.​

Listen to it here.

Isn't This The Exact Plot of "The Natural"?


Shortest Day of the Year


What Happens When You Sign a Non-Disclosure, And Then Disclose?

You get sued again.

Bill O'Reilly obviously wanted the non-disclosure included in the agreements because he didn't want the women speaking out about what he did or said. The problem, of course, is that it goes two ways. He has to keep his yap shut too. If he starts going around saying he didn't do anything, that violates the agreement.

There's a good chance those details are going to come out now.

Rolling Stone Magazine Sold



The company that owns Variety just paid over $100 million for Rolling Stone Magazine.

Jann Wenner will stay on in some capacity, according to the article.

Ryen Russillo Leaving ESPN Radio

From this morning's Radio Ink...

SVP for ESPN Audio, Traug Keller, made the announcement that, despite a lucrative offer, Ryen Russillo will not return to ESPN Radio next year. He’s been with the network for over eight years. Keller said Russillo, who hosted the 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. slot, has decided to pursue other opportunities when his contract expires next year. Russillo’s final day on the air will be this Friday.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Jerry Taft


We the People

President Obama created a page on the White House website for people to start petitions. He vowed his administration would respond to any petition that got over 100,000 signatures. They actually lived up to that, including to a petition that asked for the president to deport Justin Bieber. (They said no.)

President Trump had to take the page down. From the Washington Post...

The Trump White House has not responded to any of the petitions that have circulated on the site since the president took office, many of which have taken a particularly grave tone.

Other popular petitions on the site this year included those calling on Trump to put his businesses and financial assets in a blind trust (356,000), asking for the anti-fascist organization Antifa to be recognized as a terrorist organization (366,000), asking that the liberal financier George Soros also be declared a terrorist (152,000) and calling on President Trump to resign (138,000).

We're not a very serious people, are we?

High School Rick

This photo was sent to me yesterday by an old Heidelberg High School classmate. It's from the school yearbook...in 1979. I was a junior. This is the year before we moved back to Chicago.

Kaempfer's Woodpecker

This is The Kaempfer's Woodpecker, a real bird in Brazil. It's named after the man who discovered it--a man named Kaempfer. It wasn't me, but I do believe we have some relatives that settled in Brazil. (Not for THAT reason. Generations earlier)



The Kaempfer’s Woodpecker, once thought extinct, now has its first protected habitat through a 593-acre land purchase in central Brazil’s Cerrado biome, the world’s most biodiverse tropical savanna.

Read all about it here.

(Photo by Instituto Araguaia)

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Fixing up the old girl


Another Potential Creep Revealed



This time it's Silicon Valley star TJ Miller. He's accused of sexually assaulting and punching a woman.

Return of "The Office"


It looks like NBC is preparing to bring back "The Office". Details at the Hollywood Reporter. Steve Carrell will not be involved in this reboot.

Hall of Presidents

It does kind of look like that, doesn't it?


Twitter Blocks Violence & Hate Speech

Twitter is finally cracking down on violence and hate speech. From AdWeek...

“Content that glorifies violence or the perpetrators of a violent act,” according to the blog post. “This includes celebrating any violent act in a manner that may inspire others to replicate it or any violence where people were targeted because of their membership in a protected group. We will require offending Tweets to be removed and repeated violations will result in permanent suspension.”

Along with cracking down on violence both on and off the platform, Twitter says the rules will apply to anyone who intimidates a user or group in an effort to silence their viewpoints or voice. That now includes anyone that uses their profile’s user name, display name or profile bio. Hateful imagery will also now be banned as sensitive material.

The president just lost about a dozen twitter uses he has retweeted over the years.

Jill Stein Collusion?

Is it possible that former Green Party candidate Jill Stein also colluded with the Russians? The Senate Intelligence Committee is investigating that very possibility. I say, go where the evidence takes you. I've always thought it was strange that she was sitting at the same table with Michael Flynn and Vladimir Putin in Russia.

Fogel is Back at WLS-FM

This is good news for Dave Fogel. Happy to see he has landed back at his old station/time slot. From today's NOW newsletter...

Brant Miller and Dave Fogel both see changes out of Entercom turning Chicago’s WJMK/104.3 from classic hits to classic hip-hop/throwbacks “104.3 Jams” WBMX last month. That liberates Dave Fogel to cross the street back to Cumulus, to co-host “Wakeup Call” on classic hits WLS-FM/94.7 with Kim Berk. (He’d previously held down mornings there from 2010-2013.) And Entercom’s format change lets the versatile Brant Miller focus on his specialty – weather. He segues from co-hosting with Kim to supplying weather forecasts for both WLS-FM and talk sister WLS/890. Cumulus market manager Marv Nyren calls Brant “the best in the business.”

Monday, December 18, 2017

Sunday Breakfast with Tom Weinberg

Great piece in the Daily North Shore about Eckhartz Press author Tom Weinberg. Here's a small taste...

Mid-February 2015. Tom Weinberg, still adventurous, is a 70-year-old journalist/TV producer/professor, braving the conditions in the Mosquitia Jungle of Honduras with author Douglas Preston, cinematographer/documentarian Steve Elkins, jungle survival experts and a team of archaeologists.

“We dealt with rainstorms on steroids,” Weinberg recalls. “And Doug Preston called a spot in the jungle ‘more Jurassic than Jurassic Park.’ ”

They were there to search for The Lost City of the Monkey God (or Ciudad Blanca), a quest that began with an Elkins video shoot in 1994.

Weinberg, 73, and Elkins, 66, have been friends since the 1970s.

“It became something of an obsession for both of us,” Weinberg writes in his book, Chasing the Lost City: Chronicles of Discovery in Honduras (Eckhartz Press, 2017), a pictorial and personal companion to Preston’s 2017 New York Times bestseller, The Lost City of the Monkey God: A True Story.

“Nearly every night I wrote my personal impressions [17 chronicles in 2012; 12 more in 2015] of our journeys into the unknown.”

Read the whole story at the link. I love their illustration of Tom too.

Illinois Youth Soccer Volunteer of the Year

This was a nice surprise. Look under "Volunteer of the Year"...


Congratulations to the following, very deserving, recipients of 2017 Illinois Youth Soccer Awards. Each of the award winners will be honored at the Illinois Youth Soccer Awards Banquet on March 2.

Competitive Coaches Of Year:
Frank Mateus, Rockford Raptors*
Craig Snower, FC United

TOPSoccer Coaches Of Year:
Cary Claver, Grove United TOPSoccer

TOPSoccer Buddies Of Year:
Jenna Birdsell, Trevian TOPSoccer
Alex Narel, Park RidgeTOPSoccer
Zoey Kolhoff, Kaneland TOPSoccer
Matthew Birkshire, Chicago TOPSoccer

Demosphere Administrator Of Year:
Jan Berkley, Young Sportsmen's Soccer League

Volunteer Of Year:

Shawn Danhouser, Chicago TOPSoccer
Rick Kaempfer, Green White Soccer Club
Steve Samuelson, Green White Soccer Club

Young Referees Of Year:
Gabe Billings
Kelsey Medina

TOPSoccer Community Partner Of Year
Maine South High School
More winners still to be announced

CONGRATULATIONS AGAIN TO OUR HONOREES!

Two Legends

John Landecker (left) and Mitch Michaels (right)

Friday, December 15, 2017

John & Mitch in Orland Park

From this morning's Orland Patch...

Radio Hall of Fame Legend John Records Landecker, Radio Legend Mitch Michaels, Bob Feldman's #1 Nothing Bundt Cakes and Jonathan Toews Jersey Drawing Highlight FREE December 17 Sports Cards and More Show @ The Orland Park Civic Center

Mark your calendars NOW for the FREE Sports Cards and More Show Holiday Shopping Extravaganza @ The Orland Park Civic Center (14750 Ravinia Ave. Orland Park, IL) from 9 a.m - 2 p.m. on Sunday, December 17, 2017. You'll score awesome deals on sports and other memorabilia, Bob Feldman of the #1 ranked Nothing Bundt Cakes, will be on hand selling sweet gifts, and we are honored to announce Radio Hall of Fame Legend, John Records Landecker and Mitch Michaels will be with us from 10 a.m. - 1 p.m. selling and signing the best-selling books "Records Truly Is My Middle Name" By John Records Landecker and "Doin' The Cruise" By Mitch Michaels. Both books make perfect stocking stuffers for every music lover on your gift giving list! We have something for everyone! Admission will be FREE as our holiday gift to you, and everyone gets a chance to win door prizes including $50 Card Show Gift Certificates and a Bundlet from Nothing Bundt Cakes @ 9:30 a.m., 10:30 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. and an autographed Jonathan Toews Chicago Blackhawks Jersey @ 12:30 p.m.! (Winners MUST Be Present) Come See What We Offer....It's Not Just Sports Cards....It's A Whole Lot More!

Holy Crap

The quality of people being nominated for lifetime judicial positions. Watch this video. Whoo boy.



And then I heard this...



Why Was Net Neutrality Dropped?

The ISP industry (three giant telecoms) spent over $100 million lobbying for it. (See how much your congressman got from the business to see if he/she will ever fight for Net Neutrality's return). Oh, and by the way, the new rules contain a provision saying that states do not have a right to create their own Net Neutrality rules.

In the most recent poll 83% of Americans were against this, including 75% of Republicans.

Drain the swamp, my ass.

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Minutia Men, Episode 77


EP77 – Rick and Dave discuss who would have been a better roommate in college–POTUS or VP, plus Florida stories, Millennials, This week in 1908, and Rick’s brush with former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich.

You can listen to it here.

FCC Guts Net Neutrality

From Inside Radio...

FCC Votes 3-2 To Dismantle Net Neutrality Rules. By a 3-2 party line vote, the FCC today passed the Restoring Internet Freedom order which repeals the net neutrality rules enacted under previous FCC chair Tom Wheeler in 2015. Passage of the new rules, which end utility-style regulation of the internet in favor of a “light touch” approach, was widely expected. Chairman Ajit Pai and his fellow majority Republican commissioners had already pledged to vote in favor of the order. The vote was delayed by a 15-minute evacuation of the FCC meeting room by an unspecified “security incident” that occurred during Pai’s prepared remarks.

Look for the telecoms to lay low for a while before making major moves, but those moves are assuredly coming. I guarantee it. It's preposterous to argue otherwise (which is their current argument). If so, why was this necessary?

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). 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.