Friday, November 10, 2017

Pat McGann

Very funny Chicago-based comedian. Had me wiping away tears from laughing so hard.

Happy Birthday U.S. Marine Corp

Today's the birthday of the United States Marine Corp. Of all the military branches, I think they have the best theme song. Today's a great day to give it a spin...

Silver Slugger Awards

Last year the Cubs had several. This year, not a single one.

The entire list of 2017 Silver Slugger Award winners is below:

Catcher: Gary Sanchez (Yankees)
First base: Eric Hosmer (Royals)
Second base: Jose Altuve (Astros)
Third base: Jose Ramirez (Indians)
Shortstop: Francisco Lindor (Indians)
Outfield: Aaron Judge (Yankees)
Outfield: Justin Upton (Angels)
Outfield: George Springer (Astros)
Designated hitter: Nelson Cruz (Mariners)

Catcher: Buster Posey (Giants)
First base: Paul Goldschmidt (D-backs)
Second base: Daniel Murphy (Nationals)
Third base: Nolan Arenado (Rockies)
Shortstop: Corey Seager (Dodgers)
Outfield: Giancarlo Stanton (Marlins)
Outfield: Marcell Ozuna (Marlins)
Outfield: Charlie Blackmon (Rockies)
Pitcher: Adam Wainwright (Cardinals)

How Unpopular is Trump?

His approval rate in the military (that's right, the notoriously conservative military) is only 44%.

Among the officers his approval rating is only 31%. That's lower than the population at large.

These numbers are almost impossible for a Republican. The military traditionally votes Republican 3-1.

Two More Creeps

One of these really bums me out. The other one doesn't surprise in the least. OK, I'll be honest. Neither of them surprises me in the least. I just wish it wasn't true about my favorite comedian.

Judge Roy Moore (running for Senate in Alabama) allegedly fondled a 14-year-old girl.

Louis CK has allegedly masturbated in front of numerous women (who obviously didn't ask for that)

I had no idea there were this many creeps out there.

FCC Officially Approves Entercom/CBS Merger

From this morning's RAMP newsletter...

The Federal Communications Commission has formally approved the merger of CBS Radio and Entercom -- another giant step closer to the creation of the radio industry's second largest company, combining Entercom's 127 stations and CBS Radio's 117 stations. The approval was given near the bottom of a wordy 20-page document, which read, "We have reviewed the proposed merger, the applications for its approval, and related comments. We conclude that the applicants are fully qualified and that grant of the Merger Applications and the Trust Applications, subject to the conditions set forth herein, will serve the public interest, convenience, and necessity." In response to the FCC's ruling, Entercom President & CEO David Field said, "We are energized and excited by today's announcement from the FCC. The Commission's approval marks a significant milestone on our path toward completing the transformational combination of Entercom and CBS Radio. This brings Entercom an important step closer to our goal of delivering greater value for our listeners, customers and shareholders as a leading media and entertainment company with national scale and the No. 1 creator of live, original and local audio content."

An evening at the Red Lion with Bobby Skafish

What a fun night at the Red Lion last night. The bar has undergone a MAJOR renovation since the last time I had been there, and it's beautiful place. I had a chance to chat with the owner Colin, and he told me some great stories about the place, including the fact that it's haunted. (It's part of all the haunted house tours)

There's also a cool back story about Colin's family. His father was one of the guys that the movie "The Great Escape" was based on (he was one of the forgers). Another of the prisoners in that camp was Chicago's very own Ray Rayner. I had never heard that about Ray, so I researched it when I got home, and sure enough--it's true. Amazing.

Anyway, thanks so much to everyone who came out. Bobby will have one more signing in December. We'll get you the details as the date approaches.

Thursday, November 09, 2017

Latest Creep Update

Time Magazine has a pretty comprehensive list of famous sexual predators who have been exposed over the last few weeks.

I've reported on most of them, but there are least a half dozen or so new ones.

OK, gotta have one

Alert to people who still buy me Christmas presents (a very, very small group of people)

Brandon Hyde

My wife Bridget actually has a Brandon Hyde Cubs jersey. No joke.

Good writing

Rick Wilson is an anti-Trump GOP operative, but he also happens to be a very good writer. His latest piece about Carter Page is excellent, but I find myself most drawn to his good writing, like this paragraph...

The delta between Trump’s imagination of himself and the brand image that he desperately wants to sell is always wide; he’s the “billionaire” lout playing the Manhattan sophisticate who gorges on fast food. He’s a man with a lemur wig and a five-pound bolus of chin-wattle who think’s he’s irresistible to women. He’s the serially bankrupt master of the Art of the Deal. The TV talk show character who snuck into the Oval Office on a tide of Russian influence and now thinks he won on the merits.

Five pound bolus of chin-wattle. That's some good shit right there.


One of the most dangerous players ever. An absolute assassin on free kicks. The Italian superstar calls it quits...

The Red Lion Pub

Looking forward to tonight's Bobby Skafish book signing. It's from 7-9pm at the Red Lion Pub at 2446 N. Lincoln Avenue in Chicago. I used to go there quite often when I lived in the neighborhood. If you come up to me tonight and tell me a German beer that has the word "Lion" (in German) in the name, I'll buy you one.* (*Offer not valid to any of my German-speaking friends)

Chicago From Space

How cool is this?

Letterman's Old "Friends" Pay Tribute

Garry's Back on WGN

Well, at least for one interview. From today's Robert Feder column...

One more Veteran’s Day tie-in: Chicago radio personality and podcaster Garry Meier will talk about his late father’s service in World War II under General George Patton in an interview with David Plier on WGN AM 720. Meier will share a 1982 recording of his father, Frank Meier, recalling a 48-hour period of battle in December 1944 in Europe. Airing at 2 a.m. Saturday, the interview will mark Meier’s first appearance on WGN since he was released by the Tribune Broadcasting news/talk station in November 2014. Plier’s show will be uploaded to podcast at

Wednesday, November 08, 2017

Happy birthday Mom!

Happy birthday to my mom.

She may be 22 years older than me, but she has double or triple my energy.

No idea how she does it.

5 Authors, 5 Events

If you'd like to pick up an autographed Eckhartz Press book to give someone for Christmas or Hanukkah this year, you've got five different opportunities during the month of November...

Thursday night (11/9) from 7-9pm we'll be at the Red Lion in Chicago with Bobby Skafish! The Red Lion is located at 2446 N. Lincoln Avenue in Chicago. This will be your last chance to get a Bobby autograph on the north side of Chicago. We will have one more event with Skafish in December on the south side.

(We Have Company: Four Decades of Rock and Roll Encounters)

Saturday morning (11/11) we will be in Atlanta to cheer on Mark Gelinas, the keynote speaker for this year's Purple Stride--a 5K race to benefit pancreatic cancer research. Eckhartz Press has donated 25 copies of Mark's book "GelStrong" which will be available at the event. The proceeds go to the great cause.


Friday afternoon (11/17) we'll be at Galveston Steakhouse in Michigan City Indiana (10 Commerce Square) with John Records Landecker from noon to 4 pm. John and Mike Dempsey will be doing their regular radio show during the party. Galveston doesn't open until 4 pm but they will be open for us and have a bartender on duty. John's HOF book will be available there.

(Records Truly Is My Middle Name/Hall of Fame Edition)

Sunday morning (11/19) we'll be with Mitch Michaels from 8:45AM until noon at the Chicagoland Record Collectors Show in Hillside (at the Best Western Hotel, 4400 Frontage Road)

Mitch's buddy Jim Peterik (Ides of March/Survivor) will be there too.

(Doin the Cruise: Memories From a Lifetime in Rock and Roll and Radio)

Thursday night (11/30) we'll be at the Frisbie Center at 6pm in Des Plaines (52 Northwest Hwy) with Bruce Bohrer. Bruce will talk about his days as a Wrigley Field Usher.

(Best Seat in the House: Diary of a Wrigley Field Usher)

Swing by one or all of these events. Meet our authors. Meet me and Dave. Pick up a stocking stuffer or two.

See you there!

Brent Petersen

Eckhartz Press author Brent Petersen is a smart guy, and I always like reading his take on the world. His book "Truffle Hunt" wasn't just about truffles--it was about politics and history and intrigue. His blog tackles similar issues.

This week he took a look at the Mueller investigation and has an interesting take on it: "WE ARE IN THE MIDST OF A MAFIA INVESTIGATION"

So you're saying we've got a chance

RIP Roy Halladay

Terrible news across the wires yesterday. Former Cy Young Award winning pitcher Roy Halladay died in a plane crash.

The Washington Post has the details.

He was only 40 years old.

Fergie Jenkins just tweeted this out...

Gold Glove Winners 2017

Only one Cub on the list (Jason Heyward), but I can't complain too much about this list. I would expect to see Contreras, Baez, Rizzo, and Russell on this list again before they retire.

American League - Martin Maldonado, Angels (1)
National League - Tucker Barnhart, Reds (1)

AL - Eric Hosmer, Royals (4)
NL - Paul Goldschmidt, Diamondbacks (3)

AL - Brian Dozier, Twins (1)
NL - DJ LeMahieu, Rockies (2)

AL - Andrelton Simmons, Angels (3)
NL - Brandon Crawford, Giants (3)

AL - Evan Longoria, Rays (3)
NL - Nolan Arenado, Rockies (5)

AL - Alex Gordon, Royals (5)
NL - Marcell Ozuna, Marlins (1)

AL - Byron Buxton, Twins (1)
NL - Ender Inciarte, Braves (2)

AL - Mookie Betts, Red Sox (2)
NL - Jason Heyward, Cubs (5)

AL - Marcus Stroman, Blue Jays (1)
NL - Zack Greinke, Diamondbacks (4)

Nude Hippo

Great to see this in my e-mail box this morning from Tony Lossano...

Just when you thought that is was safe to go back online...NUDE HIPPO is BACK! Launched 20 years ago, (on May 3, 1997), NUDE HIPPO still continues to cover great people, fun locations and cool events in Chicago!

The newest NUDE HIPPO video & podcast, featuring the interview with four former journalists from DNAinfo Chicago, are now online.

You can watch the NUDE HIPPO video at:

You can hear the new NUDE HIPPO: THE PODCAST at:

PROMOTE: Everything is accessible by going to

Some British Creeps Revealed

Don't look now, but this sexual harassment issue is going worldwide. The BBC has 25 cases under investigation.

Fellas, it's time to knock it off. (Or should I say, "Chaps, it's time to knock it off"). The 85% of men who had no idea the problem was this bad are now standing in solidarity with the women.

Your creepy life has changed forever. And it should.

My first 280 character tweet

Tuesday, November 07, 2017

JRL's HOF speech

Great job on the video by Art Vuolo...

But, but, I thought people hated Obamacare...

Apparently not. 90% of advertising budget is cut. Hours and days you can sign up are cut. And still double the number from last year...

Late Night Hosts React to Shooting in Texas

This Thursday Night!

Hot Stove League

It's that time of year again for baseball. The Hot Stove League is underway, with wild speculation about which teams will make trades and sign free agents. The MLB newsletter says the Cubs will be the second most active team (behind the Giants). This is what they wrote...

By season's end, the Cubs' pitching staff included four pitchers who started 30 or more games in the Majors in 2017. Two of them -- Arrieta and John Lackey -- are free agents now, leaving Theo Epstein and Jed Hoyer with the task of replacing 60 starts. The July trade for Jose Quintana diminished the Cubs' already dwindling prospect depth, meaning any trade for a starting pitcher this offseason could cost a young Major League regular, such as Kyle Schwarber, Addison Russell or Ian Happ.

Ervin Santana will be among the most sought-after names on the trade market for starting pitching, but it may be difficult for the improving Twins to move him coming off a postseason berth. The Tigers likely would insist on multiple young players from the Cubs' Major League roster in any deal for right-hander Michael Fulmer. Regardless, look for the Cubs to aggressively pursue starting pitching, and possibly a closer as well with Davis set to hit the market.

How Ridiculously Biased is Fox News?

They won't even air it in Britain because it breaks impartiality rules. Specifically cited were the the programs hosted by Sean Hannity and Tucker Carlson.

CNN, by the way, airs there, no problem. Put that in your pipe next you want to whine about unfair coverage of Trump.

Life with FU Money

Geroge Clooney in the latest issue of Vanity Fair...

George Clooney does not have plans to appear on your big screen any time soon. During an interview with The Sunday Times, the new father of twins said that acting is no longer his priority.

“Look, I acted for a long time and, you know, I’m 56. I’m not the guy that gets the girl anymore,” he said. “Well, yeah, I shouldn’t be the guy that gets the girl. But, look, if somebody’s got Paul Newman in The Verdict, I’d jump. But there aren’t that many like that. Acting used to be how I paid the rent, but I sold a tequila company for a billion fucking dollars. I don’t need money.”

In June, shortly after the birth of his twins, Ella and Alexander, Clooney sold his tequila company, Casamigos, founded with friend Rande Gerber, for what was reported to be up to $1 billion.

Even fresh off his new film, Suburbicon, which had the worst box-office opening for any film he’s directed or starred in, Clooney isn’t worried. “I’ll make money other ways if I have to. I used to do coffee commercials.”

Monday, November 06, 2017

Rick and Dave on WLS

Thanks to the folks at WLS for letting Dave and I fill in for Bob and Marianne. It was a heavy news day, but we still managed to have fun.

Here's the audio if you missed it.

Landecker Podcast

I was proud to be a small part of this WBNR Brandmeier Nation podcast paying tribute to John Landecker. Thanks for asking Joe Callahan Jr.

You can listen to it here.

He's Baaack

Jimmy de Castro was my first boss in Chicago radio back at the Loop during our heyday. He later became a gazillionaire when he sold a cluster of stations that eventually became Clear Channel. His last stop was at WGN Radio.

Well he's back!

Jimmy was named as head of CBS Radio Stations in Chicago.


This morning John Landecker appeared on WBEZ. It was a fun interview.

You can listen to it here.

Radio Hall of Fame

From this morning's RAMP Newsletter...

The 29th Annual National Radio Hall of Fame induction ceremony in Chicago was an emotional evening full of laughs, standing ovations and reflection. Host Dave Ramsey welcomed the sold-out crowd, commenting, "We're sitting in the midst of greatness tonight." Inductee Bill Handel remarked, "I have one person I'm talking to, just a million times. Radio is truly a magic medium." Entercom President/CEO David Field introduced his father, 2017 inductee Joseph Field, saying, "What I most admire about my Dad is who he is as a human being. He's the model of honesty and decency. Working together with my Dad has been rewarding and fulfilling." Joseph stated, "I know I wouldn’t be receiving this honor tonight without David's extraordinary record."

John Records Landecker spoke about knowing "Radio's Best Friend," Art Vuolo, since high school and that Art shared with him that Nov. 2 was the 97th anniversary of radio in the U.S., making the event more special. The late Bob Sievers' daughter Caroline accepted the award on his behalf, saying, "My father was blessed with the gift of voice, which was unmistakable and always resonated with good will and enthusiasm." Tom Barnard said, "It's about working with great people," adding he plans to be around "until I drop dead, I love [radio] so much."

Bobby Bones became the youngest-ever person inducted into the NRHOF. He was congratulated via video by iHeartMedia Chairman/CEO Bob Pittman, Luke Bryan, Thomas Rhett, Kelsea Ballerini and more. Bones thanked his listeners via TuneIn and acknowledged their help in raising more than $10 million for charity over the last three years, closing with, "This is a 'we' thing, not a 'me' thing."

Pictured, (l-r): NRHOF Chairman Kraig Kitchin, John Records Landecker, Joseph Field, Bobby Bones, Tom Barnard, Bill Handel and MBC Founder Bruce Dumont. Not pictured: Inductees Sean Hannity and Robin Quivers, who were unable to attend.

WLS Monday Morning

You'll never guess who is getting another shot at hosting a radio show this morning from 10am--Noon. Your good buddies Rick and Dave. We'll be filling in for Bob Sirott and Marianne Murciano on WLS 890 AM. Tune in if you get a chance...

Thursday Night with Daddio!

This coming Thursday night might be the last chance before Christmas for you get an autographed copy of Bobby Skafish's Book-of-the-Year finalist "We Have Company"! It's a perfect Christmas gift for anyone who loves rock and roll and radio. Bobby will be selling and signing copies at the Red Lion Pub (2446 N Lincoln Ave Chicago) from 7-9pm! Come out and grab a brew and a book, and hang out with everyone's favorite Daddio!

They have a point

Tower Up! Skyrise Chicago

My wife Bridget and youngest son Sean made the trek all the way up to the top of the Sears (OK, Willis) Tower yesterday morning. It was a charity event to benefit the Shirley Ryan Ability Lab. Shirley Ryan AbilityLab is the first-ever “translational” research hospital where clinicians, scientists, innovators and technologists work together in the same space, applying research real time to physical medicine and rehabilitation.

Bridget's office signed up for this a long time ago, and Sean wanted to tackle it as well. They had no way of knowing at the time how personal an event this would be.

One of Sean's friends from his soccer team, Jack Breitenstein, suffered a brain aneurysm a few months ago, and he is now a patient at Shirley Ryan. I've coached the young lad in soccer since he was seven years old.

Much to Sean's surprise, when he reached the top of the tower, there were patients handing out medals to everyone who made it. When Sean was handed his medal, he got it from none other than his buddy Jack, who is recovering thanks to the great work of the people at Shirley Ryan Ability Lab. It was a wonderful moment.

The event raised more than a million dollars!