Musings, observations, and written works from the publisher of Eckhartz Press, the media critic for the Illinois Entertainer, co-host of Minutia Men, Minutia Men Celebrity Interview and Free Kicks, and the author of "Back in the D.D.R", "EveryCubEver", "The Living Wills", "$everance," "Father Knows Nothing," "The Radio Producer's Handbook," "Records Truly Is My Middle Name", and "Gruen Weiss Vor".
Friday, January 27, 2017
RIP Mike Connors
Triumph at the Inauguration
Don't Take the Bait
The New York Times has the story here.
Unlike his boss, Bannon never speaks out rashly in public. This is all part of a plan to get the media spinning into a tizzy, and it's working by the way. It's just a matter of time before someone in the media over-reaches or lashes out. When that happens, it will become the story, and the rest of the media will turn on him/her. (Like Buzzfeed after releasing Russian dossier)
That person's name will become shorthand for "hysterical media" or "unfair media" and Trump and his voters will move one step closer to being able to live in hermetically sealed information bubble. And the media will have lost all it's power to pop it.
This is going to be a challenging four years. The media must remain vigilant and disciplined. Just the facts, man. When they say something obviously outrageous and stupid (like the media needs to shut up), just report it, and move on.
It's your job. The rest of us are depending on you.
WGN Traffic App
Thursday, January 26, 2017
Surprising Mary Tyler Moore
I'll let Landecker do the setup: "Valerie Harper had been a guest on my morning show. Mary Tyler Moore was scheduled for a satellite interview from NY. Valerie agreed to come back and play the role of Vicki Truax who did the show with me."
This was one of my all-time favorite moments on the Landecker show at WJMK.
Minutia Men, Episode 36
EP36 – Rick and Dave discuss marriage vs. jail, sympathy for Spicer, Churchill’s brand new tie to the Nazis, Cub announcer trivia, and Rick & Dave’s brush with Joni Mitchell.
Listen to it here.
Still One of My All-Time Favorite Days
31 years ago today, #Bears won Super Bowl XX.— Zach Zaidman (@ZachZaidman) January 26, 2017
Bears 46, Patriots 10
At the time, the 36 point victory margin was largest in SB history.
They Have Learned Nothing
No hint of irony. iHeart is still in ridiculous debt from the last buying spree. So much so, they have nearly destroyed the medium. Now they want to do the exact same thing again? Oy.
Here's the problem. The execs who make these deals will get personally rich in the process due to the short-term increase in stock price and their own sweetheart options. They don't care what they do to the medium, the consumers, the listeners, or the employees.
RIP Butch Trucks
Claude Hudson "Butch" Trucks, one of the Allman Brothers Band's founding drummers, died Tuesday evening in West Palm Beach, Florida. He was 69. Page Stallings, Trucks' booking agent, confirmed the veteran musician's .death to Rolling Stone, but said a cause of death is currently unknown.
Butch is on the drums in this classic Allman Brothers tune...
Crossing the Rubicon
Trump cites Pew report as proof, then when told it actually disproves him, shifts to saying author is "groveling."pic.twitter.com/vLfrdGGOQG— Peter W. Singer (@peterwsinger) January 25, 2017
Watergate super-reporter Carl Bernstein reports that even some Republicans are starting to panic...
Last night @CarlBernstein said DC Republicans are raising concerns about Trump's "emotional maturity, stability" https://t.co/dUe5eFRQSu— Brian Stelter (@brianstelter) January 26, 2017
And yet, this was the response from someone I actually know. Someone who isn't a moron, but someone who is lapping up Trump's koolaid. This is not ironic. He means it...
Trump BURIES ABC on Nightline. Is strong, sticks by torture 4 terrorist, puts US worker ahead of Snowflakes Liberalism is death rattling YAY— Ed Tyll (@EdTyll) January 26, 2017
Wednesday, January 25, 2017
50 Years Ago
Bad Lip Reading
RIP Mary Tyler Moore
How To Replace ACA?
Should Republicans actually kick off a new administration by engaging in a fool’s errand that is almost guaranteed to backfire?
Sometimes you have to punt.
Maybe they'll actually work on helping fix it now. It's funny how your perspective changes when you actually have to come up with a solution rather than just blindly criticize.
Chicago Radio Ratings
New Talent at WKQX
That is, we have three of the top thirty worst traffic bottlenecks in America.
#3 is at I-290 and I-90. (I try to avoid this at all costs)
#15 is at I-90 and I-94 North. (This is right by the exit to go to Wrigley Field)
#27 is at I-90 and I-94 South.
The whole list is here. The worst one is in Atlanta and #2 is Fort Lee New Jersey. Remember that one, Chris Christie?
The True Correct Story of the Inauguration
The crowd was magnificent and huge, bigger than any crowd had ever been before! It stretched all the way to the moon. The Pope, who was there, confirmed it.
“Thanks for being here, Pope,” Donald Trump told him.
“Are you kidding? You’re my best friend,” the Pope said. “I wouldn’t miss your big day for anything!” He gave Donald Trump a big high-five.
Everyone in the world had come there at great expense. They sold all their possessions — their homes, their “Hamilton” tickets, which were worthless to them — to raise money to come and see this great sight. They could not believe that a perfect being such as Donald Trump even existed.
Read the whole thing here.
Tuesday, January 24, 2017
Pat Colander Book Signing
Pat Colander, award winning Eckhartz Press author, is having a book signing on Saturday. The details are...
On Jan. 28, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., she will be discussing and signing copies of her book at Miles Books, 2819 Jewett Ave. in Highland. FYI: (219) 838-8700 or www.eckhartzpress.com
Be there to pick up the Chicago Writer's Association Book of the Year.
Out of Touch
Best director: Denis Villeneuve (“Arrival”), Mel Gibson (“Hacksaw Ridge”), Damien Chazelle (“La La Land”), Kenneth Lonergan (“Manchester by the Sea”) and Barry Jenkins (“Moonlight”).
Best actor: Ryan Gosling ("La La Land"), Casey Affleck (“Manchester by the Sea”), Andrew Garfield (“Hacksaw Ridge”), Viggo Mortensen (“Captain Fantastic”) and Denzel Washington (“Fences”).
Best actress: Emma Stone ("La La Land"), Isabelle Huppert (“Elle”), Ruth Negga (“Loving”), Natalie Portman (“Jackie”) and Meryl Streep (“Florence Foster Jenkins”).
Best Supporting Actor: Mahershala Ali ("Moonlight"), Jeff Bridges ("Hell or High Water"), Lucas Hedges ("Manchester by the Sea"), Dev Patel ("Lion"), Michael Shannon ("Nocturnal Animals")
Best Supporting Actress: Viola Davis ("Fences"), Naomie Harris ("Moonlight"), Nicole Kidman ("Lion"), Octavia Spencer ("Hidden Figures"), Michelle Williams ("Manchester by the Sea").
Obviously a big day for "La La Land", but also of note--the return of Mel Gibson, and no-one will be able to make jokes about the whiteness of the nominees this year. In one category (Best Supporting Actress), only two of the five nominees are white.
It's gonna be a bumpy ride
The New York Daily News is going to crucify Mr. Trump the next four years if he doesn't get a thicker skin.
Early look at tomorrow's front...— New York Daily News (@NYDailyNews) January 24, 2017
POOR BABY! https://t.co/D1OPkl7SdZ@PressSec: Media fact-checking is 'demoralizing' us pic.twitter.com/zNPFf4EtEM
Even the urbane New York Times is now taking off the gloves. Here's the headline: The Lies Trump Told
You can blame the press for everything and score some short-term points with your followers, but that only works if you can take the heat when they return fire. This guy clearly cannot take the heat. I'm sure leaders around the world are taking note.
"We Have Company" Review
Bobby Skafish had the ultimate gig. Interview some of the biggest rock stars on the planet at the behest of Chicago’s prominent rock stations.
And now he’s recounting his experiences as interviewer, emcee, and observer.
The book is called “We Have Company: Four Decades of Rock and Roll Encounters.”
Rock music on the radio in the Windy City is synonyous with WXRT, WLUP, Q101, and WDRV. Skafish had stints at all of these outlets.
Beginning with an attempt to sneak into a Todd Rundgren show, and including such rock royalty as Jimmy Page and David Bowie, Skafish engages the reader as he chronicles encounters with everyone from The Ramones to Steely Dan’s Donald Fagen. The late keyboardist Ray Manzarek tells him some Jim Morrison stories during an interview.
Bobby does admit to a minor faux pas as he honed his craft, on his way to becoming the go-to interviewer, when touring acts came to Chi-town. He also describes a few times when he interacted with these starts as he emceed their concerts, including a few at now defunct venues.
As someone who attended several of the concerts described in the book, it really resonated with me. However, even if you’ve never set foot in the Midwest, you will delight at hearing stories about Debbie Harry, David Lee Roth, David Gilmour, Dave Matthews, Ron Wood, and more.
Johnny Lydon, Tom Waits, Lenny Kravitz, Bruce Hornsby, Suzanne Vega, John Mayer, Nancy Wilson (Heart) are among the icons sharing a microphone with Skafish.
Bobby joined me on Acid Flashback radio. We played music from the artists and bands covered in the book, and he recounted a few of these stories.
To listen to the interview, click here.
How the Rest of the World Sees us Now
Monday, January 23, 2017
Colbert Says Goodbye to Obama
New FCC Chairman
NAB CEO Gordon Smith issued the following statement after hearing the news that Commissioner Ajit Pai would be nominated to chair the FCC. “Without qualification, NAB supports President Trump’s selection of Ajit Pai to the position of FCC chairman. Ajit Pai is a known quantity who brings integrity, good humor, and a fierce intellect to the Commission. We look forward to working with him and his colleagues on a pro-growth FCC agenda that benefits tens of millions of Americans who rely on free broadcast radio and TV for the most popular content, credible news, and lifeline local emergency alerts.”
When they say it is good news for radio executives AND the American public, one of those things has to be untrue. I'll let you guess which one it is. Oh, and by the way, Pai is also a devoted enemy of Net Neutrality. Look for your connection to get slower and more expensive while the telecoms pad their wallets and internet innovation slows to a crawl. This will laughingly be called "pro growth".
Not a Good First Press Briefing
On Saturday, Press Secretary Sean Spicer took the podium for the first time. He falsely claimed that the turnout at Trump’s inauguration was the “largest audience to ever witness an inauguration, period.” Later, Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway explained that Spicer’s comment was based on “alternative facts.” These were some of Spicer’s first official remarks to reporters, and they were incorrect.
Yes, incorrect. And it was the way he did it too...with such anger and vitriol. And he was wrong. Way wrong. Alternative facts. Buckle up. This is going to be a very bumpy ride.
LATE UPDATE: Even the very conservative Weekly Standard is taking a shot at Spicer today: “Rule #1 for press relations is that you can obfuscate, you can misrepresent, you can shade the truth to a ridiculous degree, or play dumb and pretend not to know things you absolutely do know. But you can’t peddle affirmative, provable falsehoods. And it’s not because there’s some code of honor among press secretaries, but because once you’re a proven liar in public, you can’t adequately serve your principal. Every principal needs a spokesman who has the ability, in a crunch, to tell the press something important and know that they’ll be believed 100 percent, without reservation.”
The Single Biggest One Day Protest in American History
And it was done in a completely peaceful way. High praise all around.
the aerials out of chicago #womensmarch are something else pic.twitter.com/ucvwtVzYM5— Christina Manduley (@cmanduley) January 21, 2017
Nashville, Louisville, San Diego, St. Paul, Wichita, Chicago, Oklahoma, London, Los Angeles, NYC, Washington DC... #WomensMarch pic.twitter.com/D4xx2EMd62— Nick Bilton (@nickbilton) January 21, 2017
The #WomensMarch in England, France, Australia, and Germany today 👏💜 pic.twitter.com/UhhxK0lUks— Rossalyn Warren (@RossalynWarren) January 21, 2017