Listened to @espn1000’s tribute to @DickersonESPN and was so proud of @WaddleandSilvy, @TWaddle87, @CarmenDeFalco, @fred_huebner et al. as they beautifully honored JD. Even managed not to cry … ‘til Ralph called.— Jason Wilde (@jasonjwilde) December 29, 2021
Please support Parker via JD’s @GoFundMe: https://t.co/OwAPiONC1O pic.twitter.com/RW8RQTh47n
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".
Wednesday, December 29, 2021
RIP John Madden
"Chicago is a lot like the Bears"— Kevin Kaduk (@KevinKaduk) December 29, 2021
John Madden, January 1986 pic.twitter.com/CyWn7yIWrP
Wednesday, December 22, 2021
The latest Eckhartz Press book, coming in January! https://t.co/3wgYdWWoEw— Rick Kaempfer (@RickKaempfer) December 22, 2021
Tuesday, December 21, 2021
Rent a Hitman
#MinutiaMenCelebrityInterview EP89: Rick and Dave chat with Rent-A-Hitman’s Bob Innes https://t.co/J3Z2mJdVkc— Radio Misfits Podcast Network (@RadiosMisfits) December 20, 2021
Come for the pretty girl selling her gas, stay for the OCD practical jokes. https://t.co/NrOlb7rzzJ— Rick Kaempfer (@RickKaempfer) December 21, 2021
A handy guide for the matches being played over the holidays... https://t.co/oBA0veMhQu— Rick Kaempfer (@RickKaempfer) December 21, 2021
Billy Preston & Nat King Cole
Saturday, December 18, 2021
Friday, December 17, 2021
Destination Eat Drink
Thursday, December 16, 2021
New Video for My Sweet Lord
Congrats on 50 years, Mitch! From Robert Feder's column this morning...
Monday marks a milestone for Mitch Michaels, afternoon personality on Alpha Media west suburban classic hits WERV 95.9-FM. It’ll be the 50th anniversary of his first broadcast on Chicago radio — as evening host on the former WGLD. “The station was on the floor of an old folks’ home — the Oak Park Arms Hotel in Oak Park — which I always thought was an unusual place for a rock station,” he once recalled. “There was a fire escape in the program director’s office and the door out faced east. I’d go out there for smoke breaks and just look at the Chicago skyline at night, knowing that’s where I really needed to be.” Michaels went on to a stellar career, including stops at WXRT, WDAI, WKQX, WLUP and WCKG. In 2017 he released his memoir, Doin’ the Cruise: Memories From A Lifetime in Radio and Rock & Roll, published by Eckhartz Press.
Wednesday, December 15, 2021
Top 5 for me
Young Frankenstein escaped OTD in 1974. Gene Wilder said this was his favourite film of his own, but who's got time to watch it during the Christmas rush? Don't worry, I've condensed the whole thing into 2 minutes for you pic.twitter.com/HrmQHgGFfP— The Sting (@TSting18) December 15, 2021
Link to CNN New Day today https://t.co/bBM1qk8Lyc— David Frum (@davidfrum) December 15, 2021
Monday, December 13, 2021
Friday, December 10, 2021
RIP Mike Nesmith
Thursday, December 09, 2021
Randy Merkin Event
If you are out and about on Saturday, swing by Dino's Sports Fan Shop in the Glen (1875 Tower Dr, Glenview) between 1-3pm. @randymerkin will be there selling and signing copies of his new book "Behind the Glass". I'll be there too. See you there! https://t.co/HjEC2x2lGn— Rick Kaempfer (@RickKaempfer) December 9, 2021
Wednesday, December 08, 2021
Monday, December 06, 2021
Intellectual and High Brow. https://t.co/cCwuV70Yvl— Rick Kaempfer (@RickKaempfer) December 6, 2021
When Harry Met Rehab
Went to the world premiere of When Harry Met Rehab over the weekend. What a great show. Great writing by Spike Manton and Harry Teinowitz. Great acting. Highly recommended: https://t.co/fHfOsOAtTt— Rick Kaempfer (@RickKaempfer) December 6, 2021
Chris Cuomo Fired
I'm not suprised at all that he was fired. I am surprised it took this long.
Friday, December 03, 2021
The latest issue of Illinois Entertainer is out and includes my tribute to the Chicago media figures we lost this year. Thanks to Rich King, Joan Esposito, and Kipper McGee for helping me memorialize a few of their former colleagues.
Thursday, December 02, 2021
An Off-White Christmas
Just a reminder, we have a great Christmas book available at Eckhartz Press, penned by the head of the Chicago Literary Hall of Fame, Donald G. Evans. It makes a wonderful Christmas gift. An Off-White Christmas Paperback https://t.co/sdY3ovgA8h via @rickkaempfer— Rick Kaempfer (@RickKaempfer) December 2, 2021
This arrived in my e-mail box this morning. Perhaps it was in yours too. I'm not optimistic this is going to be settled anytime soon...
Thank you again for being the best fans in baseball and providing remarkable support and love to our team. We are constantly reminded of the power of our sport to unite people, restore hope and provide joy. We hope you know you are central to making that happen.
As a valued member of our Cubs family, we would like to share an update with you on the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA).
Despite Major League Baseball's best efforts to reach an agreement with the Players Association, the current CBA has expired. As a result, MLB has been forced to commence a defensive lockout of Major League players. While we share your disappointment in the situation our game finds itself in today, we can assure you MLB negotiated in good faith and exhausted every reasonable avenue to try to avoid the first work stoppage in nearly 30 years.
Today’s announcement does not necessarily mean games will be canceled. The purpose of MLB taking this step is to create urgency to reach an agreement as quickly as possible with the goal of avoiding impact to the 2022 season.
MLB is working around the clock to reach an agreement by offering solutions aimed at addressing the Players Association's stated concerns in a manner that is fair to both sides, improves competitive balance on the field so every team has a chance to compete and improves and preserves the game of baseball for all fans.
Until an agreement is reached, we are not permitted to sign free agents, offer contract extensions, waive/option/release players or conduct trades. We have prepared for this undesired outcome. Once a new agreement is reached, we will be well positioned and ready to continue our work to build the next great Cubs team.
We are confident there is a path to an agreement and both sides will work together to protect, grow and strengthen the game we all love. In cooperation with MLB, we are committed to keeping you informed throughout this process. For the most up-to-date information from the League, please visit mlb.com/update.
We appreciate your patience and support as we await a new agreement. We know how important our team and sport are to you and your family. We can't wait to share the magic of Wrigley Field and enjoy competitive baseball with you in 2022.
The Chicago Cubs
Chicago Radio Ratings
For the full break down of the dayparts, click here on today's Robert Feder column. These are the overall numbers...
1. (tie) WBBM 780-AM/WCFS 105.9-FM all news, 5.7 (6.7); WLIT 93.9-FM adult contemporary, 5.7 (4.6)
3. WVAZ 102.7-FM R&B, 5.0 (5.8)
4. WDRV 97.1-FM classic rock, 4.8 (4.3)
5. WBEZ 91.5-FM public radio news talk, 4.7 (4.9)
6. WTMX 101.9-FM hot adult contemporary, 4.4 (3.5)
7. WOJO 105.1-FM Mexican regional, 4.3 (4.5)
8. WLS 94.7-FM classic hits, 4.1 (3.8)
9. (tie) WXRT 93.1-FM adult album alternative, 3.7 (4.0); WGN 720-AM news talk, 3.7 (3.5)
11. WPPN 106.7-FM Spanish adult contemporary, 2.9 (2.9)
12. WKSC 103.5-FM Top 40, 2.8 (2.8)
13. WRME 87.7-FM soft rock oldies, 2.7 (2.7)
14. (tie) WBMX 104.3-FM classic hip-hop, 2.6 (2.5); WGCI 107.5-FM hip-hop, 2.6 (2.5)
16. (tie) WBBM 96.3-FM Top 40, 2.4 (2.3); WLEY 107.9-FM Mexican regional, 2.4 (2.4); WUSN 99.5-FM country, 2.4 (2.4)
19. WSCR 670-AM sports talk, 2.1 (2.5)
20. WKQX 101.1-FM alternative rock, 2.0 (2.0)
21. WFMT 98.7-FM classical, 1.9 (2.3)
22. (tie) WCHI 95.5-FM rock, 1.8 (1.7); WSHE 100.3-FM adult contemporary, 1.8 (1.8)
24. WMVP 1000-AM sports talk, 1.6 (2.0)
25. (tie) WPWX 92.3-FM hip-hop, 1.2 (1.3); WZSR 105.5-FM hot adult contemporary, 1.2 (1.1)
27. WGRB 1390-AM gospel, 1.0 (0.6)
28. WVIV 93.5-FM Spanish contemporary, 0.9 (1.1)
29. (tie) WLS 890-AM news talk, 0.8 (1.1); WSRB 106.3-FM R&B, 0.8 (0.7)
Tuesday, November 30, 2021
Dick Allen book
As we approach the eve of what should be (finally!) his election into @baseballhall, @LouciferOlsen and I are talking Dick Allen with @john_p_owens and Dr. David Fletcher, the authors of the upcoming book Chili Dog MVP. Give it a listen! #HOVGPodcast— Shawn Anderson (@HOVG) November 30, 2021
🎙️- https://t.co/413c6JRvLU pic.twitter.com/XwI63P7LM6
Monday, November 29, 2021
What did I do over Thanksgiving break? I watched all seven hours. Loved every minute of it. An absolute delight for Beatles fans.
Wednesday, November 24, 2021
It's here! The brand new 2022 edition of my book "EveryCubEver" is now available at Eckhartz Press. There are over 100 new and/or updated entries (geez, the Cubs had a lot of new players this year). It's the perfect Christmas gift for the Cub fan in your family. We have a few new endorsements too...
Tuesday, November 23, 2021
Two Beatles are reunited in the 2022 Grammy Award nominees list:— The Beatles (@BeatlesEarth) November 23, 2021
Best Rock Song:
Paul McCartney - “Find My Way”
Best Rock Album:
Paul McCartney - “McCartney III”
Cody Fry - “Eleanor Rigby”
Best Boxed Package:
George Harrison - “All Things Must Pass” pic.twitter.com/ZeEls06o7N
Here's the full list of nominees from the big 4 categories...
• Best New Artist: Arooj Aftab, Jimmie Allen, Baby Keem, FINNEAS, Glass Animals, Japanese Breakfast, The Kid LAROI, Arlo Parks, Olivia Rodrigo, Saweetie.
Monday, November 22, 2021
RIP Doug Jones
Former Big League Reliever Doug Jones Has Passed Away from COVID Complications - https://t.co/V71zbCxq2V pic.twitter.com/nhcgiti0a1— Bleacher Nation (@BleacherNation) November 22, 2021
Time to Become a Basketball Fan Again
Top of the morning ☀️ pic.twitter.com/fubQc5GQXJ— Chicago Bulls (@chicagobulls) November 22, 2021
Fox News Contributors Quit
Friday, November 19, 2021
RIP Mick Rock
So sad to hear this news. Dave and I interviewed Mick just a few years ago. He had incredible stories. https://t.co/7Lo0BqoANo https://t.co/D9Q0i6nXQO— Rick Kaempfer (@RickKaempfer) November 19, 2021
Randy's Book Launch
A few photos from last night's Randy Merkin book signing. Thanks to everyone who came out. Randy had a great time and was very humbled by the huge turnout...
Thursday, November 18, 2021
Born OTD in 1882, Les Mann (Cubs 1916-1919). In retirement he convinced the 1936 Olympics in Berlin to add baseball as an exhibition event, and brought two teams over to play in Nazi Germany. They drew a larger crowd in Berlin than had ever attended a WS game in US. #everyCubever pic.twitter.com/DF7mUhTxgF— Rick Kaempfer (@RickKaempfer) November 18, 2021
Life is slowly returning to normal for us at Eckhartz Press. Tonight we're even having a book launch party...our first one in two years. Randy Merkin and his book "Behind the Glass: Stories from a Sports Radio Producer" are the stars. Come out and see him, meet him, buy his book, and get it autographed tonight November 18, at the Claim Company in Northbrook (776 Skokie Blvd.) Drop by any time 6:30 - 8:30 pm. Dave and I will be there too. We hope to see you there!
Don't Travel Like a Local
Eckhartz Press author Brent Petersen (Truffle Hunt) has a great website, in case you haven't checked it out before. It's called Destination Eat Drink (He has a podcast with the same name on the Radio Misfits Podcast Network). Today's piece is a great one. Here's a short excerpt pointing out that the conventional tourism adage is wrong...you should NOT travel like a local...
Locals get up early every morning and go to a job they hate. Locals are worried about their kids’ school. Locals are eating leftovers for dinner in front of the TV. Locals are paying bills
Meanwhile, tourists are sleeping in at their luxurious hotel. Tourists turned on their “out of office” automatic email reply. Tourists left the kids with grandma. Tourists are eating at gourmet restaurants every night. Tourists put everything on the credit card that they won’t worry about paying until they get home.
Locals don’t go to vineyards for wine tastings or to the top of the Eifel Tower. They’re too busy getting crushed on the subway during their commute.
Locals don’t visit a museum and then have a leisurely lunch at a cafe while people watching. They scarf down a sandwich at their desk between depressingly soul-sucking meetings.
Locals don’t take a sunset cruise complete with hors d’oeuvres and cocktails. They’re answering after-hours emails and desperately trying to get the kids ready for bed.
Happy for Lisa Dent. She was named the new afternoon voice at WGN Radio, according to today's Robert Feder column. Steve Bertrand stays aboard as newsman. Anna Devlantas loses her show, but will remain on the staff as a reporter.
The new WGN lineup is...
6 to 10 a.m. Bob Sirott
10 a.m. to 2 p.m. John Williams (including the Wintrust Business Lunch at noon)
2 to 6 p.m. Lisa Dent and Steve Bertrand
6 to 7 p.m. WGN Radio’s Money Matters (airing early 2022)
7 to 10 p.m. John Records Landecker
Of course, I have previously interviewed Lisa. When we spoke in 2016, she was the morning co-host at US-99.
Wednesday, November 17, 2021
Minutia Men Celebrity Interview
This week's Minutia Men Celebrity Interview is with actor Dan Butler, ("Bulldog" on Frasier). He's in town for the play "When Harry Met Rehab" https://radiomisfits.com/mmci87/
Another New Eckhartz Press Book
Lots of good news for us at Eckhartz Press these days. Our latest book (not even released yet) has already been optioned for a movie. From Robert Feder's column this morning...
A new book about the late Chicago White Sox legend Dick Allen has just been optioned for a documentary film. Chili Dog MVP: Dick Allen, The 1972 White Sox and a Transforming Chicago, soon to be published by Chicago-based Eckhartz Press, was written by John Owens and Dr. David Fletcher and edited by veteran sportswriter, baseball historian and author George Castle. (Here is the link to order.) “We look back at this unique time in Chicago history, when the arrival of a controversial slugger lifted the Sox out of a daunting hole and united a fractious fan base during a time when Chicago was going through tremendous changes,” said Owens, a longtime producer and president of the Chicago/Midwest chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. Allen, who missed induction to Cooperstown by one vote in 2014, is on the 10-person National Baseball Hall of Fame’s Golden Days Era Committee ballot. Andy Billman, the former ESPN producer who directed episodes of the “30 For 30” series, optioned the book and will be with Allen’s family in Orlando for the Hall of Fame vote December 5. A portion of the book’s proceeds will be donated to Gilda’s Club Chicago.
Jim Baumann on WGN Radio
Tuesday, November 16, 2021
The True Middle America
NEW: The #2020Census #CenterOfPopulation is near Hartville, a town of about 600 people in central southern Missouri.— U.S. Census Bureau (@uscensusbureau) November 16, 2021
The #CenterOfPop is calculated every 10 years and helps quantify how fast and in what direction the population is moving.
Learn more: https://t.co/MKjoqqUX8e pic.twitter.com/V3wtGRu1ut
Monday, November 15, 2021
Every Cub Ever Sale
For the next two weeks we have a sale (while supplies last) of my EveryCubEver book (2021 edition) at Eckhartz Press. It's 50% off until the end of the month. The new 2022 version (at full price) will be coming out in December. Click here to order.
Thursday, November 11, 2021
Wednesday, November 10, 2021
Every Love Boat Guest Star Ever
This is tremendous https://t.co/PEOlhoh1Kh— Rick Kaempfer (@RickKaempfer) November 10, 2021
Brian Williams leaves MSNBC
Sorry to hear about this. I thought Williams did the best show on MSNBC.
Tuesday, November 09, 2021
Born OTD in 1897, Harvey Hendrick. Gink, as he was known, was a utility man in the big leagues for eleven seasons, including one year with the Cubs-1933. Sad ending for Gink. Just a few years after his playing career ended, he shot himself to death at the age of 43. #everyCubever pic.twitter.com/rUyP5aOnVE— Rick Kaempfer (@RickKaempfer) November 9, 2021
Looking for something to do tonight? This will be a fun virtual event at the Glencoe Library. I'll be on-line checking it out. Register here: https://us02web.zoom.us/.../reg.../WN_P2-K0OSASDiam84YtwzZoA
Monday, November 08, 2021
When you've even lost the NFL Today crew
The discussion on FOX about the Rodgers situation— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) November 7, 2021
Jimmy: "I'm disappointed in his selfish actions."
Howie: "Possibly putting your teammates in jeopardy is selfish."
Terry: "Let me give Rodgers some advice, it be nice if he came to the Navel academy and learn how to be honest." pic.twitter.com/O9rT6kDNXm
Come for the Tom Waits story you have to hear, stay for West Bank Story @MinutiaMen https://t.co/E3yZNuygvC— Rick Kaempfer (@RickKaempfer) November 7, 2021
This is Your Life, Roger Badesch
To borrow @wgnkingjohn’s line - ‘HOKEY SMOKES!’ - looky what @WGNRadio did on their web site! Thank you @1stieman & everyone else at the station! Oh, & @SteveBertrand - when you least expect it, there might be pizza 😁🍕 https://t.co/wsAfrsbNrN— Roger Badesch (@TeacherRB) November 6, 2021
Jim Baumann in Elgin
Thanks to everyone who came out to Elgin on Saturday to meet Eckhartz Press author Jim Baumann (Grammar Moses). Jim sold a lot of books while managing to stay safe and follow protocols. He also had a great time.
Friday, November 05, 2021
Behind the Glass by Randy Merkin
Our latest book is currently being announced on AM 1000, ESPN Radio. That's because the executive producer of the station is our latest author. Click here to pre-order today.
Here are a few reviews...
- Marc Silverman, Co-Host of the Waddle & Silvy Show, ESPN Radio AM 1000
“As a new talk show, finding the right executive producer is vital to a show’s long-term success. I can say that the Waddle & Silvy Show has been successful over parts of three decades due, in part, to Randy Merkin. After his sweaty first interview with Waddle, our PD, and me in 2007, Randy quickly established relationships with A-list guests, a trust with Chicago teams, and a quick wit on the air.
Merk is much more than an executive producer & is one of the best storytellers I know. I’ve enjoyed watching him creatively navigate booking the best guests in the business. And, if he’s booked them once, they continue to join us thanks to Merk establishing a trust that few other producers earn. Merk is a pro’s pro, a lifelong friend & radio brother.”
- Tom Waddle, Co-Host of the Waddle & Silvy Show, ESPN Radio AM 1000
“Randy is an incredible radio talent. His vast knowledge of the business and bottomless pool of contacts are unmatched. I’ve learned a lot about the business from Randy. His talent is only exceeded by his loyalty and integrity. Randy is the best!!!”
- Bruce Murray, former host, One-On-One Sports/Sporting News Radio & current host, SiriusXM’s NFL Radio
”In our years together I saw Randy go from green to whatever the opposite is when it comes to experience. I also saw him go from black to grey (now I’m talking hair), maybe from having to deal with us! But when it came to guest booking, I’ve never been with anyone better. My partner, Bob Berger, and I would marvel at his naivete when it came to his guest pursuits, and what he said he could deliver, until he actually DELIVERED! What a great joy it was for us to have those conversations, thanks to Randy’s passion and ‘never take no for an answer approach.’ He was the best!”
- Bob Berger, former host, One-On-One Sports/Sporting News Radio
“After more than 40 years in radio, I can tell you that Randy’s the best. There’s nobody better at booking guests! If there was a Hall of Fame for producers, Randy would get in on the first ballot. The list of those he somehow convinced to come on radio shows is a who’s who’s of the sports world and beyond. I was lucky enough to be in front of the microphone for many of those interviews.”
- James "JB" Brown, Host of NFL Today on CBS and Inside the NFL on Showtime
“While we cherish champions in the world of sports, we cheer louder for champions in the game of life. Character, integrity and honesty matter. That sums up Randy Merkin.”
The story of the Hollywood stars coming to Adam's childhood pitch is part of this week's episode. @fkadamandrick https://t.co/H3p502OMZ8— Rick Kaempfer (@RickKaempfer) November 5, 2021
Thursday, November 04, 2021
Jim Baumann on Minitua Men Celebrity Interview
This week's guest is now the Executive Editor of the Daily Herald. See what the Eckhartz Press bump can do for an author? Fun conversation with Jim Baumann, author of Grammar Moses. https://t.co/YNFtGjtSqT— Rick Kaempfer (@RickKaempfer) November 4, 2021
Jim Baumann with Steve Cochran
Eckhartz Press author Jim Baumann on Steve Cochran's highly-rated podcast: https://t.co/BshsDtEc1b— Rick Kaempfer (@RickKaempfer) November 4, 2021
Women in Radio
Behind the Tribune paywall so I can't read it, but having seen the business first hand, I probably don't need to...
Life as a woman in Chicago radio, according to a new @chicagotribune report:— Ariel Cheung (@arielfab) November 4, 2021
Bosses ask you to pose for a “strategically covered topless photo.”
Harassment after ending a relationship you felt coerced into.
Being the only woman in the room.https://t.co/CbosT90GEa
Wednesday, November 03, 2021
Eckhartz Press Author Bob Boone
VIRTUAL Author Event with Bob Boone
Journalist Donald Liebenson will interview Glencoe’s own Bob Boone about City U, his most recent book of short stories. Mr. Boone will also read selections from City U and answer questions about his other books of school stories, which, according to Eric Lutz of New City, “sparkle with the feeling of lived experience.”
REGISTER HERE for this Zoom-based virtual event.
About Bob Boone: Mr. Boone and his wife have lived in Glencoe since 1969. In addition to his short story collections, he has written a memoir, a sports biography, a literature anthology, and three creative writing books. Bob has taught English in New York City, Germany, and Highland Park. He has also taught in Chicago, where he founded Young Chicago Authors. For his work with city youth, he was presented with an award at the White House by Michelle Obama.
Thanks to Robert Feder for posting this in his column today...
Jim Baumann, managing editor of the Daily Herald, kicks off the media tour for his new book, Grammar Moses: A humorous look at grammar and usage, with two interviews Wednesday. Published by Chicago-based Eckhartz Press, the book is a collection of Baumann’s Sunday columns from the Daily Herald. (Here is the link.) He’ll join Steve Cochran on his “Live From My Office” podcast and Eckhartz Press publishers Rick Kaempfer and Dave Stern on their “Minutia Men Celebrity Interview” podcast. Baumann’s first book signing will be Saturday from noon to 1:30 p.m. at the Gail Borden Public Library in Elgin. A 36-year veteran of the Daily Herald, Baumann was promoted Tuesday to executive editor, effective with the retirement of top editor John Lampinen in December.