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Previously on The Front Page...Jan/Feb/Mar 2006

03-31-06 Sometime earlier this week ... KTRS' Bob Bruce packed his bags and hit the dusty trail back to Iowa and (hopefully) his old gig. This went unannounced by the station in the flurry of all the "positive press" they received over the Lenihan Incident. Let's see now...that's three FNG's and one replacement down and four FNG's to go.
03-31-06 I know, I know ... I swore off Kramer Komments. That was until he wrote these things:
   "25 years ago, Regan was shot. Had Hinkly been about an inch more accurate, Ronni would be dead today."
   I guess Kramer didn't get the memo about the President's funeral.
   "I really would make out with Brad Pitt. Tongue; everything. Can you imagine how many women I would get after that action?!"
   Isn't he married? Isn't he heterosexual?
   "If there's one thing I AM good at, its getting fired."
   That's getting closer and closer.
    "There is a HUGE article coming out next week about me in RIVERFRONT TIMES. The photographer was recently in the studio, blinding me with the flash! I just wanted to tell you that, because I was interviewed 2 weeks ago. I hope there's no negative slant!"
   Ummm...it's not about you, Keith, it's an article about the radio station and will likely print in April. Don't expect the best, by the way.
    "Sometimes I want to go back to my Dallas days. For those of you that don't know me, when I was in Dallas, my ratings at that station were through the roof. We could do no wrong. We went out everynight and surrounded ourselves with people that were only there due to our success. I admit that. It was FUN!
    In a MAJOR market, successful and OWNED the town. We were above the law. It was a lOT of fun. If you come over Saturday for our party, I will show you pix and you won't believe them. Here's why I loved that time. I felt indestructable.
   I am the OPPOSITE of that now. It was complete chaos at every turn. If you knew 20% of what happened, you would blush. I was a part of and witnessed SO much stuff. That was one of the best times of my life, however, its not anywhere close to what I would ever have for myself THESE days."

   I'm thinking the party this weekend at the Kramer manse in O'Fallon is gonna be a bust. And I'm sure this is just what the Cardinal's owners want to have on their conscience...Kramer is so sad. That Al Law allows him to present this juvenile crap online is sad, too. Sheesh.
03-31-06 Yesterday I heard the best description ... of this website and our associated Message Board ever: "Everybody reads it, everybody submits to it, but nobody admits it." Cool. Now I'm plausible deniability!
03-31-06 I received a distressing Secret Squirrel message ... about serious ongoing problems within the local Bonneville cluster. Names were named and situations were explained at three stations there (including one of an air talent's personal hygeine, which sounded pretty disgusting...if you've ever had to deal with that, you know how it can affect an entire office). But the saddest part was the way the sender signed off: This place is imploding...after a nice run here, its time to go. I've heard about these problems for years, but no one, even Bonneville corporate, seems to want to do anything to resolve anything at The Palace Near Ballas. What's going on there?
03-30-06 The State of Radio panel ... at Webster this afternoon was a great success. Fifty or so Press Club members and Webster students showed up, Frank Absher did his usual excellent job of moderation (why doesn't that guy have a game show?) and of course, those of us on the panel were poised, eloquent and well-dressed, solving all of the industry's problems with impressive wit and wisdom. Afterward, I bought three books at Barnes & Noble and the King Kong DVD at Borders, got out of the damned suit and into jeans and a golf shirt and turned the movie audio WAY up. A good day all around, I think.
03-30-06 Final last word on Lenihan ... Dr. Lenihan returns to his previous position as an instructor at Logan College and thanks you for your support.
03-30-06 Secret Squirrel spins on ... Clear Channel/STL: "Dennis Lamme is here to make things happen! Looks like he'll be cleaning house and changing operating systems to bring much needed efficiency into the building."
03-30-06 But The Post won't let go ... Even after all was said and done with Dr. Lenihan on Wednesday evening, the P-D publishes a story headlined Lenihan joins NAACP, wants job back at KTRS, posted online after they published this story online. The most recent story seems to refute all of the information in their previous story, and in KMOV's report, linked below. Looks like they're just trying to fan the flames after everyone concerned has put it to rest. That's just wrong, especially as Lenihan meets Thursday with Logan College to hopefully resume his teaching career.
03-29-06 The Lenihan Incident is over ... and the good Doctor has prevailed. This morning, during a joint press conference, NAACP leaders blamed the media and KTRS management for over-reacting to Lenihan's on-air statement. This evening, KMOV reported that Former KTRS talk host David Lenihan and the radio station that fired him have reached a settlement. Details have not been released, but Lenihan had hired an attorney and this was a financial settlement.
03-29-06 Kramer on Corcoran ... "I doubt this guy has any balls!" From his website: "JC Corcoran opened HIS mouth the other day and said that I am a White Supremacist, allegedly. I told my listeners, blatantly, to call him and tell him I invite him into the studio to debate me on the issue to MY FACE. Some of my listeners emailed me his reply. He said that his contract prohibits him from doing that. He went on to say that I knew that, and that's why I said that. First of all, the fact that THIS guy has a contract is pretty incredible, so I am in big doubt of that to begin with. If I asked AL if I could go on someone else's show who wanted to call me out, he'd probably LET me. So I doubt this guy has any balls. JC, ask your PD if you can come on. Here's a hint, he won't let you because he knows you aren't strong enough to handle the situation without making yourself and his station look like an ASS! TRUST ME, that's the truth." Oh, boy.
03-29-06 And finally I get it ... here's what it all comes down to: "Our forums, ironically are ran by the same company. Our forums are FREE. Mike went on his forum and asked viewers to send him money to keep his forum up BTW. (Just as a side note.) So recently, I - and several of my members turned him in for violating his Terms Of Service agreement."
   Once you get beyond the third grade grammar and punctuation, you can clearly see that he is unhappy with me because I unashamedly ask for donations (about $30 a month and you may send money anytime) to keep the MB ad free, while he simply "suggests" that users "contribute". And I should then have the MB deleted because I, in his humble bully-boy opinion, violate my own "Terms Of Service"? I spent all that money on an attorney, too. Damn.
03-29-06 Sylvester Brown gets it ... "I listened to the tape and still didn't hear it. No sarcasm. No pleasure. All I heard was a guy who seemed sincerely embarrassed by his ill-chosen words." Read it here and then look to the noon and evening TV news today for the Lenihan Press Conference. HINT: It will probably not be covered by KTRS.
03-29-06 Wouldn't you think that the P-D ... has better things to investigate than the number of toilets at the new Busch Stadium? New stadium slights women by 39 stalls. Sweet Jeebus, what's next?
03-29-06 John Rook made an interesting point ... at his website a while back: "Attention should be given to all languages spoken on the American airwaves, not just English. Allowing our public airwaves to transmit programming intended to inflame or foment insurrection could be a disastrous result of today's oversight." That, along with the new knowledge that Spanish-language stations, flying under the linguistic radar for the past few weeks, were setting up the recent massive demonstrations about US immigration policy, makes this a huge problem. I learned this the hard way when, working at KLEN in Killeen/TX in 1970, our midday Hispanic dj got busted for running a lottery when a bilingual listener turned him in. We just presumed he was playing Hot Mexican Hits and joking in Spanish. Oops.
03-28-06 For almost six years ... STLMedia has provided you with intelligent commentary and critique of radio, tv and print and a place to post your thoughts and responses.
   Now, some radio nimrod who's been in the market for only three months and his cronies from some other market are trying to destroy your resources because Keith Kramer cannot handle the criticism of his show delivered here by complaining to our MB and Website site servers about what Kramer considers "unfair treatment".
   Kramer will not be successful in this effort. I've engaged, at my expense, an attorney who will touch base with him, the site managers and Al Brady Law to correct this.
   But I thought I should mention this in the event the off-site managers jump the gun (they hate legal action and will do anything to avoid it). We will regroup as necessary and bring your STLMedia.net info to you in the best way we can.
03-28-06 WHOA! It's this close ... Arbitron Phase II for the STL Winter Book publishes at 12N tomorrow. Send available demos and dayparts other than 12+ all week here or thru the Rumors page, linked above. I'm particularly interested in 10AM-3PM, M-F, 25-34 and 25-54.
   Here's how it works:
   Phase 1 results, covering 01/05/06-02/01/06 were delivered March 1, 2006.
   Phase 2 results, covering 02/02/06-03/01/06 and averaged with Phase 1 results publish tomorrow.
   Phase 3, covering 03/02/06-03/29/06 and averaged with the two previous phases, will publish as advances of The Winter Book on April 28, 2006.
   The Spring Book starts this Thursday, March 30, 2006, and will publish when Arbitron feels damned good and ready, three and a half months or so down the road, with various Phases reported inbetween.
   Spring's the most important rating period of the year, the one that most ad agencies rely on for the rest of the year, and during which stations will present billboard and print campaigns, do their very best on-air and on-line promotions and present their lame tv ads copied from other station's best efforts or bought from syndicators. Get ready to be blitzed by the bullshit that represents fully 50% of their promotional budgets.
   The 12+ numbers that we are legally allowed to present here are essentially meaningless, as are the full-demo interrim (Phase 2) numbers.
   But it's almost a given that, this Friday or next or one very soon after, a dozen times every year, radio people will lose jobs and formats and air schedules will be adjusted to accomodate what is really only partial intelligence.
   Do the fired air talents and sales people understand this? Or do they just take their dismissal and slink away?
   Isn't it slick how this thing works? So much money for so much bad news and misery...
03-27-06 Where are they now? Radio trades are reporting that former KIX104 MD and midday air talent Buddy Van Arsdale has transferred from Cumulus/Ventura to the PD position at the company's WSM-FM/Nashville.
03-27-06 Where are they now/2? AllAccess is reporting that former KSD-FM'er Jay Philpott ('95-'97) has moved from Saga's WHQG to CC's WQBW/WRIT, all in Milwaukee.
03-27-06 UPDATE: Condi is a LeniFan ... (Story below) The P-D managed finally to get the story linked from it's website home page, but in the print edition the story appeared on Page 7 in the Metro section. Not quite the same as the accusation.
03-27-06 Why did we cut KTRS' Kramer content at the MB? Because Kramer lodged a complaint with the MB provider; he can't stand being criticized, and whined about it to them hoping the provider might consider deleting the entire MB based on just this one complaint. Can't blame 'em...they don't want to be engaged in a legal deal. Kramer and his pals know how that works. Mine was a preemptive move and we hope it keeps all your other content and effort online. Kramer also sent a complaint to the host of this website, with whom I've had a relationship for many years and many websites; we'll see what happens with that.
03-27-06 Fisking a serial liar and an idiot ... Gotta love it. This person and his/her troops are seething and snarling like venemous snakes in a basket over at his/her website and MB and he/she manages to get it all wrong, intentionally or not... Read it here.
03-27-06 Secret Squirrel spins on ... Ted Koplar: "Ted Koplar is looking to get back into TV and purchase KY3/NBC in Springfield, Missouri. Hopes to get back into St Louis television soon."
03-26-06 Condi is a LeniFan ... This morning on FNC, Chris Wallace asked SOS Condoleezza Rice about The Lenihan Incident. "My understanding is that he apologized, said he didn't mean it," Rice told Fox News Sunday. "I accept that because we all say things from time to time that we shouldn't say or didn't mean to say." Curiously, while STL tv newscasts managed to fit this in this evening, STLToday.com couldn't find the time today to get that story online. Quick to accuse, just slow to report the updates, I guess. Maybe Monday's print edition...front page, above the fold, of course. Right where they accused Dr. Lenihan...
03-26-06 Millhaven back to 9A-12N KTRS ... Deb Peterson reports this in the Sunday print edition; the station's website still says TBA. Hope for his sake this is only speculation, but a boy's gotta work. UPDATE: And work he will. It's confirmed at KTRS.com that McGraw's back, beginning Monday, 27 March. And here's a link to Deb Peterson's somewhat over the top story of the KTRS "coup".
03-26-06 I've been asked often about ... the use of the Old Dogs phrase. Years ago, the Humane Society ran a series of PSA's that said "Adopt an old dog...they're cool". I always have, bringing into their Forever Home here one Old Dog after another. Lucy and BoyDog are in double digits, each with their own infirmities and both will be well cared for, loved and rubbed until it's their time. That's why I'm proud to be an Old Dog, too. I just hope for the same treatment.
03-26-06 On the 8th Day, Dave rested ... On Wednesday morning last week, Dr. Dave Lenihan made his mis-comment about SOS Rice. A dumb error, one that should have been avoidable except for his inexperience...
03-26-06 The Lenihan Incident ... has hit the Blogosphere. Read what some of the pundits have to say here, here, here, here, here, here, and here. This will be one of, if not THE, top STLMedia stories of 2006; the resolution will involve substantial change at KTRS. "Seizing the moment" for promotion is one thing; perfidious behavior at management level is something else entirely.
03-25-06 The St. Louis Cardinals ... have an employee with a personal website that contained white supremacist imagery. It was here (RR) but the images have been removed since this was posted. He offers this, though, as an excuse:
   Where you grew up accounts a lot for how you view the image of the confederate flag. My family sees the flag as a way of missing the old South and how it used to be, meaning we see that time as peaceful, hospitable, and a nice 'romantic' time in history.
    Why is that person still employed by the Cards when Dr. Lenihan was dismissed from the 50% Cardinal-owned KTRS for what has been described by most media and civil rights agencies as a "slip of the tongue"? The 'Birds have some 'splainin' to do, dontcha think? And at least one more firing. Interested Cardinal execs may contact me at their convenience.
03-25-06 I'm always tickled ... when I renew my anti-everything-bad application: Trend Micro. Used it for years, on the networked house systems and the laptops. It takes three or four restarts and a whole-system scan to update, but it's the very best protection there is. As we speak, it's going through my outboard G-drive (160 gigs). I feel SO clean. Try it free.
03-25-06 So you do mornings ... hotcha. What do you do on weekends?
03-25-06 Buzz from the Cardinals' boardroom ... there's talk beginning from the Card's side of the deal that their investment in KTRS has already been a bit of an embarassment that may need some tweaking. No idea what that means, but I'd put a buck or two on a couple layers of management being peeled off. Maybe even a move as early as next season to a moderate music format FM owned by a conservative company, like WIL or KYKY. Ya never know.
03-25-06 Secret Squirrel spins on ... WCBW: "The owner of 770AM WEW has just gotten FCC approval to buy 880AM WCBW in East St Louis and change the call. Any idea what is in the works?" Birach Broadcasting is hq'd in Southfield MI. Their formats are varied and very sales driven. Your guess as to their direction is as good as mine; best bet, check the signal and look to the size of the immigrant population within.
03-25-06 Secret Squirrel spins on ... Big League Broadcasting: "It would appear longtime KFNS producer Tony Hubert will be named as the PD for not only KFNS, but 1190 KRFT as well. Hubert is currently undergoing some training and should take over the position before the Cards' regular season starts." Sorry, but there's no "training" for a PD. It involves industry experience, and hopefully Hubert has some. Otherwise, all the ownership can hope for is to get Tony to sit up and beg.
03-24-06 Dave Strauss ... best known as KMOX' and KTRS' "Mr. Trivia" has "assumed the position" with Ron Barber and Don Marsh of In The Line of Duty, working with them on law enforcement multimedia programming, like this one. Unfortunately, this is a QuickTime file...for broadest access, I suggest they use Windows Media for encoding. But that's just me and I've never had much luck with QT on a PC. Nonetheless, best of luck to Dave Strauss!
03-24-06 Boy, was I ever wrong ... about taking some time off while Mrs. A. was out of town. The phone hasn't stopped ringing since The Lenihan Incident and my email doth overflow with new haps and projects. If you've sent stuff, please be patient. That stack of DVDs is crying to be watched (loudly) but I'm always available for updates, I guess. One other thing: anybody run a recorder on KTRS between 7 and 9AM Thursday morning? I'm told Scott & Casey really came into their own toward the end of that show and I'd like to include it in a montage I'm making of STL morning shows. I'll pay a reasonable fee for duplication and mailing. Email me if you can help.
03-24-06 Jim Compton to 1380 ... After 9 years with KTRS, Jim Compton, a long time veteran of the motorsports industry and one of the recognized leaders in media coverage for the St. Louis region has joined 1380 AM ESPN Radio, St. Louis Sports Station, for the entire 2006 season. He'll work with Malcolm Briggs and Howard Balzer, present his PM Drive ESPN QUICK SPOT PIT STOP and appear with Randy Karraker on Monday mornings. Compton will also cover breaking motorsports news for the station.
03-24-06 NOW he tells us about the dump button ... As the STLToday polls and comment board give the lie to the previously written details of The Incident and show the overwhelming popular support in favor of Dr. Lenihan, some of the previous article's posits are restaged just the littlest bit. Notice the use of the "expert from out of town."
03-24-06 Jim McKernan Named VP/GM at KY & EZ ... From AllAccess: CBS RADIO/ST. LOUIS has nabbed JIM McKERNAN for VP/GM duties at AC KEZK (SOFT ROCK 102.5) and Hot AC KYKY (Y-98), effective 4/3/06. McKERNAN most recently served as VP/GM of EMMIS TELEVISION's CBS affiliate KMTV-TV/OMAHA. Commented CBS RADIO SVP/Regional Manager LES HOLLANDER, "We’re thrilled to have someone with JIM’s experience join CBS RADIO, ST. LOUIS. His extensive track record of success speaks for itself."
03-23-06 Once again, Calhoun nails it ... There's a fine line you must walk when you are trying to do "the right thing". It appears the management at KTRS is stomping all over the place while trying to walk it. Either that, or there are some serious questions that need to be asked in the wake of yesterday's Dave Lenihan incident. Read the rest and comment here.
03-23-06 This came in last week via Secret Squirrel ... and it's just now confirmed: Kupper Parker Communications, hq'd here and with branches throughout the US and the world, is closing its doors on April 4, 2006. No word yet on their website, but sources tell me that at least one senior partner is leaving and taking a group of major clients with him.
03-23-06 Up early Thursday ... to take Mrs. A to Lambert for meetings in Milwaukee; I'll have breakfast at Reynolds Roadhouse on the way home and she'll be back Friday night. With the exception of breaking news (and only firings and format changes happen this late in the week) I'll take my leisure until Monday with DVD's and obnoxiously loud surround sound, Chinese and Mexican takeout, leftovers and microwave popcorn. Keep out of trouble and try not to annoy me.
03-23-06 KTRS' Kramer makes his point ...
   About Lenihan: Okay. Dave Lenihan was fired today. As he should have been. He referred to Condi Rice as a COON, a racial slur. He says it was a slip of the tongue. After listening to it, it sounded rehearsed to me. It pisses me off that he's made the station look like something it isn't. I'm proud of my radio station, and those involved in helping make it successful. For this guy to come on and within EIGHT days, have this happen. Way to go Dave.
   Way to work with the crew, Keith.
   About his ongoing tendency to violence: I have actually, after a GM through a fit, once went into his office and I threatened him. I said, "If you EVER pull any **** like that, ever again, I will kick your ass." I was THAT angry and didn't care the outcome. After that he respected me and never said another bad word to me.
   Well, I guess he wouldn't. Who wants to be beat to death at the hands of an illiterate DJ? What kind of an obit would that make?
   This Kramer guy is so over the top that it scares me.
03-23-06 Fisking Dorsey and the P-D ... As of about 1AM on this date, the STLToday.com website has headlined the "Lenihan fired for calling Condi a coon" story. Let me make it very clear that this is a witchhunt and that KTRS should be ashamed for falsely sourcing the story and the Post should be embarassed for publishing such a travesty of what actually happened. Read it here.
03-23-06 Secret Squirrel spins on KTRS ... "WTF...Is KTRS doing damage control by rehiring McGraw for the 9-Noon shift???" Not if McGraw has the sense God gave little green apples...and a contract attorney who's spent time in Hell.
03-22-06 Speaking of Dave Lenihan ...
   What happened this morning at KTRS was nothing less than another representation of the ongoing inability of management there to manage. He speaks quickly on the air and Lenihan misspoke himself as he delivered effusive praise of Condoleeza Rice. Listen to the audio, linked below. It's obvious he did not say it to be intentionally cruel or racist. The word "coon" doesn't even fit in the context of the sentence he was forming.
   Lenihan's a bright guy...a Chiropractor and a teacher. And because of the predictable over-the-top media swarm (this thing's even linked on Drudge), I understand he's been suspended from his teaching position. The guy is being unfairly castigated because he bumbled a word, and it began with the actions of Tim Dorsey, who has been bumbling the management of KTRS for almost a decade.
   Now let's look to Dave's future. The Internet has plastered this patently false story around the world. At least one of his former workmates has stated unequivocally on his website that he should have been fired. The truth of the matter, though, is that Lenihan is guilty of nothing more than a simple slip of the tongue. There's considerable evidence to back that up...especially the audio record.
   Now, how does he get his reputation back?
Dr. Dave Lenihan, FNG Round 2
Eight Day Dave
03-22-06 What you thought you heard ... was not what he meant to say. The comedy that is KTRS is being rewritten every day. This morning, Round 2 FNG Dave Lenihan misspoke and used the word "coon" instead of "coup" when speaking of Condi Rice taking over the NFL. He was fired within minutes and corporate fall guy Tim Dorsey apologized profusely on the air. (Audio via STLToday.com) Channels 2, 4 and 5 were predictably all over it as soon as it happened, as was the P-D. Tom Calhoun offers the best, most reasoned look at the fiasco I've seen yet on his blog. And the ring girl walks by holding up a sign: Round 3 is about to begin.
03-22-06 Movie makers aren't worried ... about the home theater phenomenon. They should be. For a few hundred bucks you can buy an audio system that plugs into your TV's audio output and delivers five-channel surround audio from two speakers and a subwoofer. For a hundred bucks you can get this all-format DVD reader-writer. Blank DVD's cost maybe fifty cents or less here. Download this (illegal in the US) Chinese software. Toss in a monthly NetFlix subscription for about $20 and you've got everything you need to bootleg every movie ever made. The studios and the theater operators should be very, very worried. Especially when you can simply rent a flick 90 days after its theatrical release for $3. I can pop my own corn.
03-21-06 Happy Spring, by the way ... 3+ inches of snow, sheesh. And Sunday I paid $40 to fill up the truck. The good news is that I only have to drive it about twenty miles a week...that's the upside of working online. A tank of gas lasts me forever, including occasional "road trips" East and West. Sorry for you who have to drive miles to work...I just walk over to the home office and fire up the PC, as do many of my friends. It's the luxury of self-employment and it gets better as I get older.
03-21-06 So there was this person ... who threatened action of some sort against me because I posted one of his/her emails to me. Now I read this accurately quoted entry from his/her website: You wouldn't BELIEVE the amount of CRAP that gets sent to me about the show and how people disagree with this or that. Its tiring. I suggest something new age to you - if I say something that offends you, change the friggin channel. Here's her emaail BTW (redacted) - so feel free to send her news on (redacted). If you send me an email, its public. Sorry. TE HE HE HE! So which way does he/she want it? I don't go both ways. Obviously he/she does.
03-21-06 NewsNow is in a very early alpha stage Beta ... and in a soft launch. I had this idea some months back and have finally got the bare bones of some flesh on it online here. It's a news portal that uses RSS, RDF and Atom feeds from various sites to automatically update page content in a variety of categories. Kinda like one-stop shopping for show prep and your regular info hungries. I'd appreciate your help on this project: your thoughts on web publications to feature, how useful it would be to you, how often you'd access it. Let me know. I'll be working on it pretty steadily this week.
03-21-06 Persian rugs and massages? From Billboard: Three former employees of University of Michigan-owned public radio station WUOM Ann Arbor, Mich., have been charged with accepting golf club memberships, Persian rugs, airline tickets and massages, among other things, in exchange for programming. In addition to the charges of embezzlement under $20,000 filed by authorities on March 16 in Ann Arbor, U of M chief financial officer Timothy Slottow told the Detroit News an internal audit uncovered fraud at WUOM totaling more than $50,000 from July 2001 to December 2005. Guess them public radio lefties loves them some 'spensive rugs and rubs...
03-20-06 Secret Squirrel spins on ... WGNU: "WGNU continues to clean house ... in the lastest round, longtime hosts Debbie Donze, Dennis James, Bill Borst, and Susan Smith-Harmon have been relieved of their privileges. Susan was a full-time employee for more than a dozen years, and was terminated - the others were hosts."
03-19-06 Buy me one of these ... it's less than $2000. But I swear to God that I'll use it to post live interviews here and master your band's and your son's band's live shows using it...
   I can't remember wanting any recorder this much since I first met a Sony cassette recorder with auto-level in 1969 in a Vietnam PX. $99 and great stereo imaging, even then.
   Radio World's review said: "While some of today's portable Flash recorders are cheaply made, come with buggy software, omit essential features or are too complex for the layperson to easily operate, the Sony PCM-D1 hits a home run by combining high-end quality and a well-designed, compact package. This may be the easiest pro audio recorder I have used." Info and a place to order.
03-19-06 Whaddya think it means ... when the creation of "tribute" websites for radio markets and legendary stations is at an all time high? I work directly with two of them (KXOK and STLRadio) and consult with many more, and they are not being accessed only by boomers eager to recreate their youth. In fact, one of them regularly chews up so much bandwidth that they've been forced to charge for subscriptions. Radio listeners want to be entertained and baby dj's need examples to follow and they have to resort to the historical record to get what they want and need.
03-19-06 I was on the air when Cheyenne Mountain blew it ... in February 1971. A guvmint employee named W. S. Eberhardt stuck the wrong tape cartridge in the alert system and instead of the regularly scheduled test, we got a war alert. I've always linked here to my memories of that terrifying morning, and now I've redone it as a subdirectory of this website. It includes scans of the actual UPI alerts that apparently meant we were going to nuclear war. It was the longest 90 minutes of my life. Take a look.
03-18-06 Secret Squirrel spins on ... KTRS: A phone call this morning leads me to understand that Bob Bruce is being "repurposed" as a sports guy because he's not "edgy" enough. Bruce's on-air presence may be cut back substantially. If this is so, it's too bad. Bruce is one of the FNG's that I felt was able to relate to the entire market, not just the rifle-toting few. Hopefully he won't follow Jay Anderson out the door.
03-18-06 True or false: Clear Channel charges employees thousands of dollars to buy their proprietary Prophet software to voice-track out-of-market shows and be paid at low hourly rates? Any CCU guys out there getting the software for free or reduced rates? Look, $1625 a month=12.50/hour for a five-hour show, six days a week. That's less than $19k a year. It takes a lot of VT's to make a living that way. No wonder radio's got a talent problem. UPDATE: Thanks to Rob Walker for clearing it up and providing a valuable insight into the CCU VT system.
03-17-06 Secret Squirrel spins on ... KEZK: "KEZK's weekend Pillowtalk shows with Bill Clevlen (Sunday) & Jackie McCoy (Saturday) soon to be replaced by DELILAH who will now be on 7 nights a week starting April 1st. There goes more local programming...bad move!!"
03-15-06 Any great legal minds out there ... who can untangle the weirdly legally encrypted CH Holdings/Cardinals KTRS license and ownership structure? Who owns what and in what percentage? And who's in charge anyway? UPDATE: My thanks to the several business and legal types who were kind enough to examine and analyze the documents.
03-15-06 Technology update ... Back on March 1, I mentioned the purchase of the RadioShark. After playing with it, I've decided to return it. Reception, even using an external antenna, is spotty at best anywhere in the house, up- or downstairs. It's very sensitive to non-radio RF sources. The recording and time delay software is great, but it just doesn't draw in the signals. It may just be the black hole in space in which the home here is hidden, but even at a 40% discount, it ain't a keeper. YMMV, of course.
03-15-06 KMOX' Jon Grayson ... is in Iraq until Friday and his reports have been nothing less than riveting. Before he went, Jon was kind enough to answer a few questions I had about his trip... Read it here.
03-15-06 And speaking of KMOX ... their new website is excellent. Cleaner, faster and much more easily navigated.
03-14-06 Jobs at The Lake ... Casey Van Allen/Dennis Klautzer's radio stations are looking for a News Director, Reporter, and a PM Drive talk show host/production Director. You'll have the chance to learn from one of the best trainers of young talent in the biz...Casey's folks almost always leave his employ for bigger and better gigs. Call 573-434-6242.
03-14-06 KRFT flips Wednesday ... from RadioOnline: Big League Broadcasting is launching "Talk Radio 1190," a new Talk outlet in St. Louis. Beginning tomorrow, Sports KRFT-AM will flip to a lineup of nationally syndicated talk programming, including Don Imus, Neal Boortz, Al Franken, The 2 Live Stews, Jim Cramer and Dave Ramsey. Big League also owns Sports/Talk KFNS-AM & FM (The Fan) in St. Louis. "We are extremely excited to launch a second station in the St. Louis Market, especially with such a dynamic lineup," says VP/GM Evan Crocker. "There is something for everyone, from political talk on both ends of the spectrum to a brand new form of sports talk that brings a new level of energy to the genre. One thing is for certain - Talk Radio 1190 promises to be unpredictable and never boring."
03-14-06 Jeanette Grider goes back to work ... from Jeff Fowler: "Mike, just wanted to let you know that we've hired Jeanette Grider here at SLU in our University Communications office. She will be a great addition to our media relations efforts and we're lucky to have her. Hope all is well. Keep up the good work."
03-14-06 The February issue of the SJR ... is completely online, and tasty tidbits from the current March issue are as well. Read it here.
03-14-06 A good guy needs a gig ... who'll be the first to step up? Randy Raley is no longer in affiliate relations with Learfield. Randy's airwork with KSHE and other stations is top notch, and he knows just about everyone in the business within 500 miles of STL. His personal and work ethic are second to none and once he gets past this unwarranted kick in the butt, he'll be ready to render his radio magic again for a very lucky (and prescient) employer. Cards? Rams? Blues? Need a magician in affiliate relations? Contact me if you know of an opening for him and I'll pass it along.
03-14-06 From Kevin & Sue McCarthy ... We have signed a national syndication deal with BCD Worldwide of Chicago. A soft roll-out starts this weekend on WKKD-AM Aurora IL (Chicago), WONX-AM Harvard IL, WKFL-AM, Bushnell FL and WDSK-AM, Cleaveland MS. More stations to come in a few weeks. Distibution is via Westwood One satellite system. Add these new four to their existing five and the McCarthy's begin with a respectable nine stations.
03-14-06 My thanks to Trevor Corey ... and his producer Lucy for allowing me to spend an hour on his Colorado-based talk show last night. It's good to do these guest shots every now and then...makes me realize why the real world is so much nicer than the radio world has become.
03-13-06 Replacing Mr. Trivia ... You probably won't believe what the KTRS programming geniuses replaced market legend David Strauss with...from 7-9PM Sunday night, a syndicated travel show (when they already had a perfectly good and locally produced travel show from Kevin & Sue McCarthy on the air) and a syndicated legal show from 9PM-12M, whose host, in the ten minutes it takes me to drive to the grocery store, managed to spit out two offensive and racist statements. The only reason these shows are on the air is that they are free. And if they have to pare back the weekend bucks, well, this leads me to believe that what I've heard about KTRS' revenue being off almost 15% year-to-year is true. These goobers are hunkering down, conserving every penny they can. There's another firin' and a hirin' dead ahead, you can bet. I take back everything I ever said about the Cards'-KTRS deal being a good business move.
03-13-06 Waiting for the storm ... to rock the house. It's just after 2AM and I'm switching back and forth between 2, 4 and 5 as the front rolls into St. Charles County (I live in STL County, near the Missouri).
     KTVI's Dave Murray has the lead on this one, clearly. It may be a case of bad timing, but I haven't seen word one on the storm from KMOV (they're running a PI) and KSDK seems to have given up coverage, although both exhibit weather bugs in the lower left of the screen.
     Only 2 is showing watches and warnings in a crawl.
     Whoops...5 just popped in with a report at 2:30AM, very brief, and then right back to programming.
     5 back on with a report, but they sound unsure, somehow. 2's coverage has been non-stop over the past half-hour. Murray and Higgins sound in control and knowledgeable.
     2:38AM, 4 finally kicks in with a report. Where have they been? Good live shot from St. Peters. Good downtown pix.
     2:40AM and I hear the approaching thunder and can see lightning out front. 4 presents good descriptions of the storm as it moves East, advising me about almost-2-inch hail coming my way.
     2:45 and 2's back on with the thunderstorm info, 4 drops out and 5 is still in regular programming. The dogs are very aware of the weather change and have huddled under the desk (Lucy weighs in at 130 pounds so there's not a lot of room left for my feet).
     2:50AM and here's the rain. Thunder's louder, lightining's brighter. No hail yet. 4 & 5 back with brief reports; 4 continues along with 2. Back to KTVI for me.
     2:56AM and 5's back but, well, they just don't sound local. Too much of an effort to be a regional station...they should pay attention to the specific locations getting hammered and follow the storm. 2 is doing a much better job of sounding hometown.
     3AM and it appears that it's past us here, off to annoy points East.
     Just some rain and far-away lightning and no hail in the ol' neighborhood. KTVI wins the coverage award, IMHO. And my insurance company, of course.
Dr. Dave Lenihan, FNG Round 2
Jay Anderson, FNG Round 1
03-11-06 Jay Anderson O-U-T at KTRS? Looks that way. The KTRS website has been changed to present Dave Lenihan (top, left), formerly of WGNU, as the station's new 9AM-12N host. Jay and Dana have been removed from the station's Schedule and Personalities pages. God forbid the station should hire a local talent for their new "concept", but they did. To see someone displaced so suddenly is disturbing but, with KTRS, not surprising (JC, Ankarlo...). Good luck to Dave. He should watch his back. Maybe this should serve as a warning to Scott & Casey, Kramer and Monty: perform or be gone. Maybe Jay can hookup again with his old station in Florida; Dana, on the other hand, was the gold in that matchup and should be kept for use somewhere. SS UPDATE Saturday PM: Dana Daniels is still with KTRS. She will be in a different position within the station.
03-10-06 AMC plays crappy sci-fi and horror movies ... every Friday night, and I mean REALLY crappy sci-fi and horror movies (Species 2 is on as I write this) and I know a LOT about sci-fi and horror movies. Why don't they call this feature the "Friday Night Frights"? Or am I the only guy who remembers the Friday Night Fights in the 1950's...B&W telecasts of bouts between mediocre boxers, sponsored by Gillette? Look sharp and feel sharp, too...just sayin'...hey, it's a free idea.
03-10-06 XM to no longer be totally "commercial free" ... While this headline is somewhat misleading, you need to read the story to see who actually caused it to happen. Why is the answer not a surprise? Thanks to SuperMax for the tip.
03-10-06 The State of Radio Today ... That's the topic at the March 30th Press Club Panel at Webster U. Audience Q&A with Urban radio legend Bernie Hayes, KMOX GM Dave Ervin and others, including my own bad self, all moderated by a very courageous Frank Absher. But you should plan on attending, if just to see me forced to wear a coat and tie. More info ahead.
03-10-06 Xanga and MySpace.com ... are touted as the "cool places" to write and show digital photos; even some adults have been drawn in. They're kinda like low-rent, ready made blogging software. Radio consultants are advising youth-oriented dj's and talkers to make their own MySpace pages to connect with their audiences. Depending on how personal the entries are, they can cause long-term grief for the writers; the internet never really forgets and all of these sites are eminently searchable. Thanks to JK and JR for the tips.
03-09-06 Imagine the possibilities ... Prostitutes in the Brazilian city of Salvador are starting up their own radio station. So what if that group had beaten the Cardinals to the KTRS table by a few million bucks...
03-09-06 Earlier this week ... KMOV-TV/Channel 4 contacted me regarding a story they were working on about Cards' baseball, KTRS and the station's signal limitations. I don't remember the name of the reporter who called me, but I do remember that they were intent on doing a story that denigrated KTRS' signal and that the reporter was amazed when I told him that the KTRS daytime signal was actually better than KMOX. Yes, KTRS has a lousy nighttime signal in SW Illinois but that shortfall has been fixed by adding new Cards' affilliates (local FM's) in the region. Isn't this argument over and isn't this problem solved? Why do we need to continue this issue? The broadcast report knocked KTRS for no reason. Please, media folk, I'm glad to provide background and sourced info for your stories, but don't ask me to be complicit in some agenda.
03-09-06 Secret Squirrel spins on ... KTRS FNG's and Spring Training:
    Cards longtime PR guy, Marty Hendin, was literally holding these two KTRS morning dopes hands, escorting them all over the Jupiter spring training grounds and hand-feeding them interviews, etc. These two look like the guys in gym class who showed up in black socks.
    Other reporters who have all been down here all have to really hump it to try and get to the players, often relying on personal relationships we've established over our years of going down here and being seen in the pressbox, on the field and in the clubhouse, both here and on the road, to get access.
    Having Hendin work like this, obviously at the instruction of the Cards/KTRS people overseeing the new "arrangement," is exactly the sort of thing we've all seen coming.
     Oh...and don't forget the FRONT ROW, directly behind home plate, tickets to the games over the weekend they AND their wives were given. Ick!!!

03-09-06 Secret Squirrel spins on ... KRFT & Imus: In the first hour of Imus yesterday morning, he said that Steak Shapiro bought a station in St. Louis, and will start airing Imus in the Morning next week. Looked in the forums for any info and didn't find anything. Any idea what station this might be? Well, as we reported on 2/25, it looks like KRFT/AM1190 is headed to Talk and that it will include Imus In The Morning. Good luck catching it on the clock radio if you live West of the Innerbelt.
03-08-06 Secret Squirrel spins on ... The McGraw Show: Guess where McGraw Milhaven is going to do some fill-in weekend work? He's headed to Chicago to work some overnight shifts at the Windy City's powerhouse, WGN. That puts him back with former KMOX boss and now WGN VP/General Manager Tom Langmyer.
03-07-06 Wayne Hagin ... who was summarily dumped by the Cardinals as their radio PxP man after last season and who has returned to STL to work the games on KPLR, also now appears to be headed into KMOX Sports. This is a crafty move on the part of the station, on both talent and image levels.
03-07-06 Al Brady Law 'splains it all ... on the NYRadio MB. Excerpts: It's talk pointed at 25-44 Men in the daytime,but at night it's sports talk, since so much of our nightime programming is play by play. and If the 25-54 men that the Cardinals bring to the station don't stick around, this will not work, but we think this is the best chance to be competitive in all dayparts since we feel Men 35-44 are not very well served elsewhere. Read the exchange.
03-07-06 Thanks to my close personal friend ... Keith Kramer, who rescued this photo of me from maybe 1989, during a commercial shoot at a Bonanza restaurant for a KIX104 promotion. The shoulder at stage left belongs to Frank O. Pinion and Terry Dailey (The Wrangler) was sitting across the table from me. It's the only TV commercial in which I've worked that was originated on 35mm film. Because of repeated takes, there are bags off camera into which you "give back" the mouthful of food you've just eaten. Sorry...TMI! Great memories, though.
03-06-06 Secret Squirrel spins ... inside Westport: KTRS Cardinals sales are p*ss poor at best, even with the tremendous tickets sales and interest in the new stadium. The sales staff here is making like a Chinese fire drill. We will survive but a few more members will fall off the Titanic. The first trend killed any hope. I cannot believe that (a) MLB games are being sold with numbers at all (if there ever was a pure image sale, this is it) and (b) that buyers and advertisers don't understand that the first Trend represented a period during which KTRS was burning off an old audience and attempting to bring in a new one.
03-05-06 Message Board changes ... with the exception of Gear for sale or to buy and pro services all boards and forums now require full registration with a valid, working email address to read and post. Guest accounts are no longer valid. And if you have registered more than once, for whatever reason, please delete your least-used registration(s). Thanks.
03-05-06 Holy Shelly Davis ... in my work redoing this website, I suddenly realized that it was the 15th Official Anniversary of the original KIX104 crew...we had our ten-year anniversary in 2001 and here we are five years later. Any interest in getting together again? Let me know and I'll see about setting something up come September for the 15th anniversary. To be eligible to play, you must have worked at KIX104 from 1985-1991.
03-05-06 More than a year ago ... I told you this was coming: the RIAA wants a third of the profits of SatRad companies as their rights fees. Thirty cents out of every dollar they make should go to the RIAA and that could end SatRad right on the spot because of the non-existent profit margin both Sirius and XM operate on. IBOC is in its infancy and just wait and see: the RIAA will also want a major piece of change for the rights to use "their" music on newly-digitized and additional HD broadcast channels. They also want a "broadcast flag" on all digital transmissions that would prevent any copying. Information wants to be free? Not if the RIAA has anything to say about it. It's not even affordable.
03-04-06 Secret Squirrel spins the wheel ... on everyone: The FBI and the IRS are taking careful looks at cash transactions at a local radio group, including allegedly extorted income from a major fundraiser...company investigations continue into a local (and very married) radio manager who may have stashed a series of babes in company-paid lovenests, one of whom is said to be pregnant with his child...and the payola investigations continue. We're talking license revocation offenses here, kids.
03-03-06 Why KTRS will fail, even with Cardinals' baseball ... The station now has two parts, talk and sports programming and Cardinals' baseball. Al Brady Law, the station's most recent PD, has a great rep, professionally. I hope he can bring these two disparate elements together. But my best bet is that he cannot.
03-03-06 I guess we'll know this Saturday ... when KTRS begins their first season of Cardinals' baseball broadcasts, but I wonder what they'll use to fill their online stream during the games? MLB has sold the rights for online streaming to Real.com and the SatRad rights to XM. TerRad stations like KTRS, even though they originate the games, cannot stream them online. Will they run "Best Of" shows or will they run alternative live programming?
03-02-06 What the business is worth ... Kagan Consultants estimates STL Radio revenue at $146.8M for 2006. In a perfect world, each 1% of 12+ audience share would gross the station $1.468M. But it's not a perfect world. Some stations offer special programming or unique formats that skew the income distribution. And, of course, not all salesteams are equally skilled or motivated. Infinity/CBS, for example, under enormous Mel Karmazin-directed pressure, regularly used to outperform Clear Channel on a market-by-market basis. Each station's worth was based on (usually inflated) multiples of this cash flow. Last year Clear Channel wrote down the valuation of their company to more accurately reflect the new values and began selling off smaller clusters; last week, CBS reported a loss of $9.1 billion in the 4th quarter alone on radio and tv stations. They have already announced their intention to cull smaller markets from their holdings. Three years ago, the owners of KTRS were told their property was worth as much as $25 million; late last year 50% of the station went for just $2 million. Looks like the go-go days of consolidation are well and truly over. What's your station worth? Hint: it's no longer fifteen times cash flow.
03-02-06 Thanks to Richard True ... he's working on a KSHE video documentary, about which you'll eventually hear more here, and sent along this great audio snip featuring Joe "Mama" Mason, probably from the early '80's. Listen here.
03-01-06 Technology update ... here are a few items you might want to consider for Easter (a holiday on which we both remember the Resurrection of Jesus and give gifts of special interest to Men...I added the last part and expect it to become another annual tradition) gifts :
   RadioShark provides USB-connected and powered AM/FM tuning, recording and time shifting and more for PC and MAC. $70 retail, get it from Amazon for $46+shipping; I have one coming and I'll let you know how well it works. Thanks to JC Corcoran for tipping us to it.
   Squeezebox allows you to spread wireless joy all over your home via 802.11g protocol. This is what I've been waiting for, a way to distribute streamed and locally originated music programming throughout the house. It's the next step in "broadcasting". $300 for each wireless receiver, so it's a bit pricey.
   iPod Hi Fi allows you to plug your MP3 iPod in and enjoy room-filling sound for $349+shipping; so does this from Bose, for $300+shipping.
   Rotate the home tunes using one of these: Station Playlist, Powergold, Soundnoetz, MRS, Music Master, DRS, CartMax
03-01-06 KMOX' Jon Grayson ... is off to Kuwait City and Baghdad. His reports from The Sandbox begin this Friday and run through March 17th on KMOX. Jon was kind enough to answer a few questions I had about his trip... Read it here.
02-28-06 CBS sues Stern ... and the complaint makes what appear to be viable claims for damage. Read it here.
02-28-06 From an FNG, to the FOG'S ... I'm watching you! And we're just all "whoo-hoo!" about it! (snip) I vote for Keith Kramer as Most Likely To Climb To The Top Of The Gold Tower With A High-Powered Rifle. Sooner or later, this boy's gonna snap. The bad news is that my house is in range.
02-28-06 K-HITS News ... Carl "The Intern" Middleman joins JC, U-Man, Sparky and Mac on The Showgram full-time effective Wednesday. He'll work, primarily, behind-the-scenes but will also have on-air appearances. Carl has been splitting his time among several of the Emmis stations over the past three years while running the Sunday "Best Of" show on Sundays, running the board for Showgram remotes and working on special projects. He came to "prominence" a decade ago when KSHE stuffed the ballot box to help him earn The Riverfront Times "Favorite St. Louis Radio Personality" award in the annual readers poll.
02-28-06 KMOX News ... Mark Reardon, formerly of WTMJ Milwaukee (and KSD-AM) to late night and overnight swing at KMOX.
02-28-06 Jay Murray News ... Jay Murry of KWRE/KFAV will be locked up by the MDA this Thursday! Post his bail for Jerry's Kids, by calling (636) 379-4424!
02-27-06 28 years ago today ... Dave "Mr. Trivia" Strauss began his radio career on KMOX. In 1996, he joined Tim Dorsey's group when they shifted to WIBV and subsequently KTRS. This morning, Strauss was cut from the KTRS weekend lineup. Over the telephone, Craig Unger informed him that the station was dropping Strauss' weekly five-hour show as a "cost-cutting measure"; it'll be replaced by syndication. Dave has asked me to relay to his loyal friends and fans his thanks for their years of listening.
02-27-06 KTRS talker shows underage (near) nudity ... on his website. Evidently Kramer and Company had way too much Mardi Gras fun and traded it off from their already underequipped stock of good sense. Mr. Lamping? Mr. DeWitt? Mr. Lawrence? Your comments, please? Or does your silence indicate tacit approval of this moronic and possibly actionable behavior? You can't be willing to risk the ownership of an MLB team to allow what's acknowledged as kiddie porn, can you?
02-25-06 Secret Squirrel spins on ... KRFT! Apparently, Big League Broadcasting has some things in the works. Here's a domain (info somewhat truncated) set up on 2/15/06 through an Australian registrar:
   Domain Name.......... talkradio1190.com
   Creation Date........ 2006-02-15
   Registration Date.... 2006-02-15
   Expiry Date.......... 2007-02-15
   Organisation Name.... Big League Broadcasting
   Organisation Address. 8045 Big Bend Blvd, St. Louis MO 63119
   Name Server.......... ns1.melbourneit.com.au
   Name Server.......... ns2.melbourneit.com.au
Why an offshore server? Is this where AirAmerica or Imus might wind up? Are Al Law or Steve Moore shaking in their boots? Can you hear AM 1190 where you live, or on the routes you drive? Many questions, no answers, speculation ensues.
02-25-06 Secret Squirrel spins on ... stupid record promoters (apparently they've not gotten smarter than when I dealt with them, in the '90's). As the preface said, "some things never change"...
   First, Jill Devine, The River's MD, sends this message to a laundary list of record promo people, warning them that the weekly report might look a bit different: This weekend in honor of Mardi Gras, we are doing party songs all weekend long. Spins will be affected and regular programming will resume on Monday at 12a.
   A smartass promo guy (Atlantic's Tom Starr) responds: In honor of Mardi Gras please add Jewel.
   The River's PD, Marty Linck, responds perfectly, to Starr and the entire list: In honor of Mardi Gras, please have Jewel record a more uptempo song.
Marty gets it, the label doesn't. Sad, huh? And you wonder why current music is crap? No comment necessary, just 'tro me some beads, mister.
02-24-06 WSPD/Toledo staffer alleges harassment by KTRS PD ... She's filed a complaint with Toledo police, accusing the station's former PD of e-mail harassment. Meghan Smith, producer of WSPD's morning-drive show, said Al Brady Law has sent "several harassing and menacing e-mail messages to her over the last year and a half," according to a police report that was filed last Saturday. Law vehemently denies all allegations. Ms. Smith no longer appears on the Clear Channel-owned WSPD website; that presumes she's been released from employment there. Clear Channel and Jacor before it have a long, storied history of alleged harassment (in both directions).
02-23-06 Cheap, useful software ... If you run audio segments on your website this might be something to pick up: AudioRazor, converts MP3's to Flash files that stream immediately and avoid the download delay. $30 and worth it at twice the price.
02-23-06 Something went tragically wrong ... sometime in the past seventy-plus years: the Communications Act of 1934, upon which radio station licenses are based, established radio as serving "the public interest, convenience and necessity" of the station's locale. Killing off news departments and ending local Public Affairs and Public Service campaigns, along with unattended voicetracking don't seem to be making the grade. Maybe it's time citizen groups started challenging commercial broadcast licenses.
02-23-06 I've had this domain name hanging around ... for several years, bought it for a client who decided to use another name, and now I'd like to unload HappyCampers.com. Any interest? Contact me.
02-23-06 Why in the world ... would we need a regulation that says the word "sh*t" is profane and violates decency limits in certain contexts? Don't you just kinda know, from being slapped by your Mother when you said it when you were a kid, that the use of such a word in polite company or on the air is wrong?
02-22-06 I've been accused ... of overly and/or unfairly criticising KTRS. Here's why their calls show up so frequently here: the station has done stupid things for almost a decade and doesn't seem to have any inclination of changing this behavior. The station's newest show hosts are either blatantly vulgar or semi-literate or both. The shows from 5AM to 3PM are not funny, not informative, and not engaging. I can't critique FOP because of my previous relationship with his show nor can I critique the new sports guys because of my lack of sports knowledge. But 5AM-3PM on KTRS, well, it sucks. Too bad, so sad, especially if I have an Arbitron diary that I've identified down to a 25-34 demo.
02-22-06 Can't wait for this ... if you're a KTRS advertiser and will be around Westport Friday between 2-3PM, stop by KTRS (in the Mall) and take a look at KTRS' new listeners. Keith Kramer has invited no more than fifteen of his bunch to be a live audience; response has been light. I'll be there to take photos. This is gonna be GREAT...and you'll get to meet all the listeners who can't afford your products!
02-21-06 The deal on payola ... is this: if you, as an individual, accept cash or gifts to add or play a song on the radio and do not report it as income, you, personally, are liable for an IRS hit and will make your station liable for FCC fines because stations must make sure that all ads (and a pay-for-play song is an ad) include a mention of who ultimately paid for it. This Dave Universal idiot, profiled on ABC (stories here, here and here) says he "was doing my job for Entercom and I did it well" and that "I did go back and say I need a thousand, you know, what do you got on this record? Absolutely. I did that every single time." This lunchbag should be in jail and Entercom should be under examination for license revocation.
02-21-06 Anybody else notice ... how quickly and completely STLToday.com dumped the "Missing billboard Redbirds" story once the KTRS/Cards ad stunt was exposed as a hoax? Remember now, the paper owns a piece of the team...
Is this a good idea for an ad campaign, as predictable a stunt as it was?
UPDATE: Paper admits being deceived and lays out the ad campaign.
02-20-06 Lee Clear ... O-U-T!
Memo to staff from Bruce Demps: While I am not prepared to discuss where we are going in the future now I do want each of you to know that effective today Lee Clear is no longer the STL market leader... I certainly appreciate Lee's past service and wish him the best but I believe a new perspective is needed to accomplish the goals set for us... I will be meeting with the department heads today and a lot more information will be forthcoming shortly thereafter.. UPDATE: Co-owned Albany VP/Market Manager Dennis Lamme is expected to replace Clear.
02-20-06 Lee Clear ... manages CCU's local cluster but hasn't yet said a word about Paul Arca's almost-electrocution to any local media nor has he had a thing to say about their attempts to fix the situation that caused it.
   Has Lee Clear made their local engineering department aware of the problem?
   Has the company added the mast-ignition interlock to all of their second-hand vans?
   Is the company's Texas HQ aware of the problem?
   Does the company know that this is the third time this kind of accident has occurred in STL, with equipment assigned to CCU/STL??
   Clear? Clear? Clear?
02-19-06 Frank Absher ... spends entirely too much time watching microfilm, in my humble opinion, but this time he's come up with a winner, and it's from Billboard in 1964. Read this article he found.
02-19-06 If you're into digital photography ... Matt Gordon's DigiCam News Digest should be part of your regular reading. Check out the website and subscribe to his low-maintenance weekly newsletter.
02-17-06 Had a chance to catch up with Paul Arca this afternoon ... he's still on the mend following his brush with death last month. Paul says the wounds on his head and foot are healing and his strength is also improving, very s-l-o-w-l-y. He's hopeful that he'll be able to return full-time to his duties at KLOU and his CD/DVD duplication company sooner rather than later. Paul also thanks all of you who took the time to email and call him.
02-17-06 Secret Squirrel spins on ... sports-formatted KRFT: I heard from a friend at an ad agency that his KFNS rep was telling him about new plans for 1190 KRFT. Apparently the station will no longer run Sporting News Radio, but instead will take a general talk approach. Imus, Neil Boortz, Al Franken and the Two Live Stews will apparently make up the Monday through Friday lineup. There seems to be no plans for a local presence.
   Mike sez: This sounds like a stretch to me...Imus and Franken are very expensive shows to run and not likely to make back the significant fees with such a limited signal. And Imus has aired here before, with no impact whatsoever. Don't you people learn?
02-17-06 One too many fatties on the White House roof ... may have precipitated Willie's release of this gay cowboy song. I've always thought Nelson jumped the shark with this duet with Julio Iglesias in the mid-'80's. Some stations have already declared they won't be playing it.
02-16-06 He's one of my heroes ... and one of the smartest radio guys ever. John Rook writes online regularly and he always has an observation that's worth reading. Check out what he has to say currently about Clear Channel; scroll down to read about his career. Rook was a Giant in the industry and now he raises champion horses; his website will always be linked at left. Check it regularly.
02-16-06 The RIAA now owns your MP3 player ... and now we are all pirates, even though they told us that we weren't. From the EFF website: It is no secret that the entertainment oligopolists are not happy about space-shifting and format-shifting. But surely ripping your own CDs to your own iPod passes muster, right? Wow. Just wow. What are these monkeys going to do when they figure out what those video rental places are all about? (Hat tip to The Sports Lounge) I'm as against true piracy as the next guy but there's this Fair Use thing...and once I've bought it, I own it. Or maybe not.
02-16-06 Craig Unger blows smoke up our arse ... or maybe Station Manager Unger's just out of the loop, in which case young Craig might want to visit Kinko's for a thorough review of his resume. Hint to Craig: start with 100 copies and go for the matching envelopes.
02-15-06 Bose revisited ... the new surround system finally is installed. Maybe cranking up Spielberg's War of the Worlds at 12M was a bit out of line...
02-12-06 The KTRS FNG's ... After a couple weeks of listening, my feeling is not good.
02-12-06 I don't get it ... Why is this RadioWorld article even necessary? The piece is written by a former FCC official and outlines the ways to avoid prosecution for payola. What's happened to personal ethics? What's happened to caring about your work product?
02-12-06 This could be priceless radio ... From a Kramer MB subscriber: We're wanting to see if there's enough interest to do a IN STUDIO FRIDAY sometimes. Would you be able to come next Friday for an hour? We'll have limited access, so the first 20 to email will be allowed in the studio.
   Rules:
   During breaks, no talking unless Kramer asks you to get on mic.
   Cell phones off.
   NO ALCOHOL!
   You can bring cameras if you want, no problem!
   If you have something to interject while the show is happening, raise your hand.
   NO ROAMING THE HALLS AT ALL!
   Sorry, we've done this before and those problems (editor: ?). Not being rude, just have to say those.

It's the stuff in bold type that tickles me the most. The station just keeps getting weirder and weirder. HINT to Al Brady Law: Having worked radio at Westport, from the 10th Floor on down for more than a decade, I can highly recommend the use of the Maryland Heights PD as security. You'll need 'em...Fridays at Westport are pretty wild.
02-11-06 I guess this is a threat ... via Secret Squirrel: You all are some real losers!!! And time is ticking....bye bye M. A. We looked you up too so have a great life! But I just don't know what it means! Look, if you guys want to really threaten me, at least make a point. Sign your name or something. Make it real.
02-11-06 Tom Calhoun, in his blog ... has offered up an interesting observation, based on a conversation with KTRS Station Manager Craig Unger...
02-10-06 In honor of ... all the eager-to-please local television stations and newspapers and magazines who have so far avoided showing the cartoon images of Mohammed that have caused uprisings around the world, please enjoy The Mohammed Dance.
02-10-06 Brian Krueger ... promoted to KMOX LSM. Brian's been with KMOX as an AE since October 2005.
02-07-06 See it now ... BrokeBack To The Future
02-07-06 As Arbitron continues to plunge head-on into the PPM thing ... it occurs to me that radio stations might be headed for major ratings difficulties, not to mention a rude awakening.
02-06-06 Deal of the week ... Citadel merges with ABC Radio in a nearly three-billion-dollar deal. This does not include ESPN or Radio Disney stations, including WSDZ here.
02-06-06 In case you missed any ... here's a link to all of Sunday's Superbowl spots. I still like the little AB horse best.
02-06-06 Got equipment to sell? God knows I do, home gear, pro gear and so on, and I'll be listing mine. I bet you have some stuff to sell, too, new, or hardly or gently used. Here's a place to list your gear-for-sale, along with a link to a photo of the item for sale. Any deals struck are exclusively between the seller and the buyer; STLMedia is just a medium for the contact and assumes no responsibility. There is no charge to list your gear for sale here. Buyer beware, etc., blah, blah. Scroll to the bottom of the MB to see Gear for sale.
02-06-06 I bought this ... in late January and planned on installing it forthwith. But then I got bogged down in details...deleting cabling from current and former components and speakers. It's hard to believe how much of a rat's nest of wiring and dust can collect behind an entertainment system in just a few years. I'm just about done with all that and I hope to have the new system in place and working sometime this week. I'll let ya know how it sounds. My experience is that Bose never disappoints.
02-06-06 I wondered about this ... Knowing that ABC had a delay in place, when the Stones did Start Me Up, I wondered if the net would censor the line "you make a dead man cum"... Read more and comment here.
02-05-06 Was it my imagination or was Superbowl XL ... only kinda so-so? I can't speak for the game itself since I'm not a big sports guy. I'm speaking of the technical presentation by ABC. I've always been a fan of the Fox "flash" and this just wasn't, I don't think, even close to that level. And one other thing: was it my imagination or were there a lot fewer national and local commercials on the game this year? I saw what I perceived to be WAY too many network promos, NFL freebies and so on. Were advertisers avoiding the game? We'll get numbers tomorrow, I guess, and we'll know more then. And one more thing: why in the world didn't the NFL use legendary Motown performers at halftime instead of a ragged performance by The Strolling Clones?

Hammond B3 organ with Leslie rotator speaker cabinet...this could have been mine!
02-04-06 Speaking of a Hammond B3 organ ... I was working at WRNL in Richmond when they decided to dump everything prior to a move to a new facility, including a B3 console with a Leslie speaker cabinet. I had the GM talked into just letting me take it off her hands for the move out of the building when some little, bespectacled 80's AOR music weasel saw it while he was in the station for an interview on the FM and offered her $5k. She took the money. That's why I hate the '80's.
02-04-06 Back on the 18th of January ... I mentioned that I had just bought a copy of one of the worst movies ever made... Wild In The Streets ($11 from Overstock.com) ... and now what shows up as the new theme for the Target campaign? Yup, the hit from that 1968 junker...The Shape Of Things To Come, by one of the world's worst put-together-for-the-movie-studio-bands, Max Frost & The Troopers. Don't ever tell me I don't have a feel for the future... A great bass line and Hammond B3 rhythm track makes it one of my all-time favorite pieces of musical crap...why isn't KLOU all over this? There's a new sun rising up angry in the sky...
02-03-06 So, like, there's a Winter Storm thing ... for this weekend in Detroit and I remember how, in March '85, the Silverdome roof collapsed under an unusually heavy snow load and why would Ford Field be any different? Cripes, people could get killed! So why haven't the NFL Big Monkeys yet assigned a Superbowl to The Ed? It'd save thousands of lives, I bet.
02-03-06 Local chick meets biker ... they swear eternal love and then they break up.
02-02-06 What are Scott & Casey laughing at? I've tasted the KTRS Morning Show a time or five and I still do not get it. I must be too old (57 is too old to enjoy listening to radio?).
   This morning they started out their show by laughing at terminal illness. God forbid their 25-34 target audience has ever experienced such personal tragedy.
   Service elements are okay, the news promos are overdone for the service provided. Brian Kelly is a talented newsguy, but unsuited for the current "if it bleeds it leads" format. He's better than that but Brian's a good soldier.
   S&C's interviews are just okay. Jebus, I need to laugh in the morning on the way to work, not get PO'd, and this mess just does not get it done.
   Promo: What's the best thing about us? We're not KMOX! But I bet they still wish they were.
   I grade the S&C show 2 on a scale of 5. They are not survivors.
02-02-06 Sorry, but I couldn't resist posting this ... from Kramer's MySpace: I don't believe much in astronomy, but once this girl gave me a book on Cancer's. It says we like to be around our stuff or we get crabby. That's totally true. I LOVE being HOME and around MY things. Do you believe in astronomy at all? Do you read your horoscope in the paper? Ever bought a book about your sign? It's ASTROLOGY, Keith. Just sayin'. And I do believe in astronomy and my sign is Hubble with Palomar rising.
02-02-06 My thanks to all involved ... in the resolution of the Kramer MB issue, especially KTRS' Keith Kramer, who has removed the messages and threads on his board that led to the publication of confidential and proprietary information about my wife's company. Just need one more little bit of disclosure from that side of the issue and we can get on with the finalization of all this. Again, Keith, thanks for taking care of business in an honorable way, especially on moving day. Enjoy your new home.
02-02-06 This is very good news ... A CCU/STL memo: After an exhaustive search and interview process, Billy Greenwood is the new program director for KSD-FM, effective immediately! Billy has done an excellent job of holding down the PM Drive slot on the Bull, while also serving as the station's music director. Billy is extremely professional and he loves to win, something we are committed to doing on the Bull.
02-01-06 Secret Squirrel spins on ... Clear Channel/STL: There have been at least three other incidents similar to this over the past few years and finally Market Manager Lee Clear has quietly ordered DOE Daryl McQuinn to, as quickly as possible, "retrofit" mast/ignition interlocks in all CCU mobile units not currently equipped with them. Clear is scared to death of a lawsuit based on his lack of oversight.
02-01-06 STL's REAL Shock Jock ... KLOU's Paul Arca, has been on the air pretty much everywhere in the world in the past few days, recounting his amazing survival story, including a few minutes with George Noory on Coast-to-Coast AM. I had the chance to spend some time on the phone with him last night and, while he still sounds pretty beat up, his spirits are high and he's grateful to all of you who have been in touch. Here's his new email address: arcavoiceovers@yahoo.com. (hattip to Dan Strauss for the Shock Jock handle)
01-31-06 WOO HOO! The Kramer Army ... ...is up and running. And they are ready to do BATTLE! The even have a spiffy logo for their recruits to use on their posts:

01-30-06 A quick-and-dirty Flash slide show ... take a look through the KTRS Drinking Game. How many can you name? This is only a sampling of those who have reaped the Westport Whirlwind. FNG's take note.
01-29-06 Can't buy one of these for personal use in MO without cop ID ... but thanks to the Internet and Robert Byrd's (D) West Virginia, now I have a personal defense device (besides the shotguns at home) for the car. I could have gone thru all the BS to get a handgun permit, but this just seems so much handier to carry around (less than 10 inches, just over a pound). And it is so cool to make it work! Let's us all get one and go beat up a bunch of bad guys!
01-29-06 Secret Squirrel spins on the Arca Incident ... YES, those broadcast remote vehicles are supposed to have that key start locking device...
01-29-06 Paul Arca's brush with death yesterday afternoon ... poses a few interesting questions. Throughout Saturday evening, I had a number of conversations with knowledgeable media-types and a non-broadcast business manager familiar with OSHA regulations. Here's what we came up with... Read the rest and comment here
KSDK photo
Paul recuperating at home
01-28-06 Paul Arca injured in freak accident ... Arca was just finishing up a KLOU remote at the St. Charles Convention Center; he and the station promotion assistant jumped into the KLOU van in the rain and as she pulled away, clipped a power line with the unlowered hydraulic antenna. The power line broke and hit the van, Paul was physically thrown out of the vehicle, taking the 7400-volt electrical charge full-on. The PA was apparently only mildly injured; the station vehicle is a total loss. KSDK video here. Arca's injuries are described as an "entrance wound on the head and an exit wound on his foot" and "blistered hands". He was in the ER when I spoke with him just before 8PM this evening, sounded badly shaken and pretty beat up but very glad to be alive. Latest word (at 9PM) is that Paul's been released to go home. God bless the Old Dog...prayers for his well-being are in order. By the way...the photo at left, bottom, shows Paul comfortably recovering from his ordeal at home and seems to indicate that he was totally unaffected by the sudden shock. Comment here
01-27-06 Twenty years ago tomorrow ... I was just finished with my morning show on WIL and hanging around the station in that dreadful building on Tucker, less than eager to head back to my little two-bedroom apartment in Florissant... Read the rest and comment here
01-27-06 An email I sent a contributor ... A contributor and a friend recently sent me a message detailing his email correspondence with Al Brady Law, the new PD at KTRS. My friend was somewhat distressed with Al's answers and asked me what I thought. I responded with the following message and I thought maybe I should share it with you all...
Read the rest and comment here
01-26-06 Ummm ... I think I said this before ... HD radio is getting virtually no buzz. Even John Kerry and Al Gore attract more attention. What gives? HD Radio "is not ready for prime time," said Philip Remek, a media analyst at Guzman & Co. in Miami. "Nobody cares because no one can access it." Comment here
01-26-06 Both UPN and WB are shutting down ... From the Squirrel: Word is KPLR will get the replacement network. No word on what WRBU may end up programming. One can only guess it may be the return of Home Shopping or a potential sale/LMA to Tribune. (Or could ABC be in the cards for one of these stations, since we all know how ABC just loves KDNL).
01-26-06 How Brian Maloney's appearance on FNC's Bill O'Reilly ...led to this Secret Squirrel report from Belleville: Buddy of mine at FedEx-STL related story of some guy in Atlanta freaking OUT because they had mistracked a package he sent to KPNT, which HAD to be there by COB today for a nite job. Didn't catch his name, but buddy said he used to work for a 99X in Atlanta (he put that on the airbill), he was yelling and screaming about not having worked for a year, almost dying from some sort of disease and that this was the most important package of his LIFE and that it was embodiment of "time-sensitive materials" or some such grandiose language. Anyway, I linked here from a blog I was reading about Air America and Al Franken and some piece that's gonna air tonight on O'Reilly on FNC and thought hey, why not create some scuttlebutt, you know? Enjoy.
01-25-06 36 years ago today ... My 707 landed in South Vietnam, at Bien Hoa AFB. Read my memories (updated as I can) and see some of the photos I took during the year I spent there. Have at it and Happy Anniversary to me.
01-25-06 Anybody have one of these systems? I have gobs of speakers and subwoofers all over the place, in use and not, but simpler is better. The movie room is not that large... This looks pretty good, only costs $500, but I'd rather not spend the loot until I've heard from other users. I like Bose; my music speakers are Bose and they make my ears happy.
UPDATE: Okay, I ordered it impulsively from Bose early Wednesday morning with two-day delivery. Guess I'll know how well it works by this weekend.
Did I screw up?
01-25-06 Six months and a couple days from now ... STL Media will celebrate its sixth anniversary. The thought occurs that we might get together again, maybe at a more centrally located "joint" than in 2005. Mid-afternoon, 24 June, a Saturday, looks pretty good. I'll keep ya posted as plans progress.
01-24-06 This is not good news ... KTRS' hot-shot, been-everywhere, talked-about-everything, bi-coastal-experienced morning show has their own message board and we've been linking to it as long as it's been available. Two things: it, like Kramer's MB, offers different forums for past fans, in NJ and MI...and neither of those, including one for STL "fans", have had any entries. Look, these new monkeys didn't have the common sense to talk about the Ford Hazelwood plant closing. They laugh and laugh but they just do not sound like St. Louis. They don't know STL and their PD doesn't know STL.
01-24-06 Apparently, KTRS has stashed all of their New Guys ... into a less-than-reputable WestPort area hotel until they find a local home. Kramer especially seems to have a problem with the accomodations...read here and here. Why can't the FNG's find a permanent place to live in a couple or three weeks? I mean, I spent a couple weeks in a hotel now and again, but I always managed to find a place for my stuff and my family pretty quickly, usually with a pool, AC and all like that.
01-23-06 Also linked at left ... is a Blog from Mark Ramsey. Read it all. Mark has my back on what I've been trying to tell you about HD. And more. Bookmark and read his column every day.
01-22-06 If you were using the STLMedia MB ... in the past hour (10-11PM), my apologies. I spent that time reorganizing the placement of Forums into Categories, changing the order of Categories and all kinds of other stuff that I just barely understand. Net result is a cleaner, better organized MB. I think. But me and The Squirrel have had a few beers...
01-22-06 The Kramer Kidz are going Woo-hoo ... about the possibility of buying ads for the KTRS village idiot on the STLMedia MB by purchasing them through our common MB host. Word to the Kidz: save your money and buy directly, 'cause I own all the ad avails there. I'll be happy, no, orgasmic to display a Kramer ad, on three conditions: the check clears, the artwork is correctly sized and the content is acceptable. Ask for details here.
01-21-06 We've added a couple of music streams ... in the Links list at left, including Terry Fox' Oasis and Oldie Carl's Obscurios. Enjoy the experience. Send suggestions for more local, non-broadcast music stream links here.
01-20-06 CBS Radio snubs KTRS ... in Kansas City! KTRS' Frank O. Pinion was scheduled to use George Woods' home studio in Kansas City for his show today; when the system there failed, Frank turned to KBEQ, who had also promised a studio. But when he called to tell KBEQ he was on his way, Frank was told he couldn't use the KBEQ facilities because of what "KTRS did to KMOX." You radio guys make me "raff".
01-19-06 Terry Fox' Smooth Jazz stream gets noticed ... Old Dog Fox has been working on this for a long time and it's finally getting world-wide traction. The article is quoted here in its entirety because the link to the story in the RFT will last only a week...
01-18-06 Ironically, I had just bought a DVD of ... Wild In The Streets when this story appeared in the Post: Alderman Ken Ortmann, who runs the Cat's Meow bar in Soulard, says police should not throw the book at all revelers caught leaving their mark in the neighborhood. His bill would allow police to issue a different citation for those trying to be discreet. Note: Ortmann runs a bar. Bars sell alcohol, which makes people, well, pee. If I owned a Soulard property I'd be, well, pissed.
01-17-06 The quick and dirty on the Fall '05 Arbitron ...
   Note: These are all 12+ numbers.
   Corporate score: CBS Infinity CBS Radio (3 stations) = 20.2; Clear Channel (5 stations) = 22.5; Bonneville (4 stations) = 14.0; Emmis (4 stations) = 14.1; Radio One (2 stations) = 3.3.
   CBS' KMOX drops a point and change (no more baseball), KEZK up 2 points, that's the Christmas surge, and KYKY continues its long slide to the basement.
   Bonneville's Arch is off a point, WIL-FM off a point, The River hovers where it's been and WIL-AM jumps a half-point.
   CCU's Z107 is pretty much flat, KLOU up almost a point (probably the Rams), Majic off a hair, The Bull down a half-point and KATZ takes a big tumble, over 2 points.
   Emmis' Point rises 3.1-4.3 (this likely relates to Stern leaving), KSHE slides over a point, K-Hits off almost a point, and KFTK is essentially flat.
   Radio One's WFUN flat but their September '05 acquired WHHL jumps 1.4-2.9.
   KTRS is flat and in 11th place 12+, but their recent major changes make this their "mulligan" book.
01-17-06 Secret Squirrel spins on CCU ... The Big D & Bubba morning show continues to be an embarrassment to the Bull and its current jocks, to St. Louis radio and a slap in the face to listeners. I'm hearing that, once a new PD is in place, the first order of business will be to replace this ill-advised move. I've also heard that a not-unfamiliar name is among the short list of PD candidates. If it's so, this will change my opinion of CCU PD's.
01-17-06 Google wants to sell your station's open inventory ... and so far, 500 radio stations, including Emmis, have agreed to the plan. It does have its drawbacks, though. Thanks to Pam Mundy for the tip.
01-17-06 Proving the industry's getting smaller ... Boomer from CCU/STL's Z107 has landed on his feet at CCU's CHR/Pop WRVQ (Q94) in Richmond VA. Interestingly, he'll be working at the same facility (with much alteration and remodeling since I was there, I'm certain) I did for about six years in the 1980's, when I left Richmond for St. Louis. Best of luck to Boomer!
01-17-06 Bonneville/STL ... (from here) appoints 20-year radio vet Sammy Simpson as National Promotion Director for its radio group and Marketing Director for its St. Louis cluster, including WARH-FM (The Arch), WIL-AM, WIL-FM and WVRV (The River). Most recently, Simpson was Program Director at co-owned WWZZ-FM (Z104)/Washington, DC. Before that he served as Promotions & Marketing Director for CC's WHTZ-FM (Z100)/New York.
01-17-06 Shhh ... You didn't hear this from me, but if the Kramer I listened to today betweeen 12N and 1PM could be the Kramer that's always on the Kramer Show, there might be hope for the Kramer Show yet. No idea how 1-3PM turned out, but that first hour was...pretty good. Now, if Kramer would get a haircut, Cash might yet have a reason to be proud of his Dad.
01-17-06 Six In '06: Radio's Mega-Trends ... from Billboard. My personal favorite is ACCOUNTABILITY: Blame it on Eliot Spitzer, but the new watchword for 2006 is "accountability." (edit) One PD says the result of the Spitzer probe is "a lot of cover-your-ass paperwork."
01-16-06 Sid Dithers, live ... Message Board curmudgeon Sid Dithers joins Smash and Jamie just after 7AM Tuesday morning on KFTK/97.1FM. Could this get to be a regular thing?
01-16-06 There aren't many radio options for grownups these days ... and to lose one is a shame. Yeah, I know, the previous KTRS hosts had rotten numbers and should have been replaced a long time ago. But by this?
   Is this what such a revered local institution as the Cardinals' MLB team needs to be presenting as their radio partner?
   I've purposely reserved my listening to Scott & Casey and Jay & Dana until this week, allowing them a week to burn in, just as I did for Kramer. I'll let you know what I think as the week goes on...
   Kramer's Message Board (RegReq) and the postings there are claimed by Himself to be an elemental part of his show. His Board is juvenile, profane and insulting to STL radio listeners of any age. It alone is one symptom of the problems with his show. The rest of the symptoms of the illness can be heard on the air.
   It might be funny to listen to a moron rant about fifty-somethings needing walkers and booby painting for charity and such, but I bet that when the Winter and Spring Books publish there will be a lot of surprises...none to me, and many to the new 50% owners of the station.
   Reality check: most of the new "talent" at KTRS have come from the ranks of the long-term unemployed and underemployed. The best-sounding of the bunch so far is Bob Bruce, the only one who came from a full-time gig (Scott Hasick had been at a station in SC for about 6 months before being reunited with his partner). KTRS got them cheap and quickly and they are all eminently disposable. BIC-lighter like.
   Watch the smoke when this all falls apart.
01-15-06 Over the past few weeks ... I've been adding some links to the collection at the left side of the page. One of them, Steve Mays' four-year-old blog, continues to impress with Steve's remarkable thoughts. His latest entry makes a good case and asks for your input.
01-14-06 His name is Mudd ... Brandon W. "Eraserhead" Mudd, to be precise, and until last evening I had never heard of him, but he's sure heard of me...he posts here as "Skippy05" and, until yesterday, was employed at KFNS. He also apparently fantasizes about knowing me: Believe me, Mr. Anderson and I have chatted at length. He knows my opinion of him and vice versa. I've never written or spoken with him.
01-14-06 "Monetizing" is the newest magic word ... it means using whatever new technological resources are available, however iffy, to create a new revenue stream for a broadcast property. Resources like streaming, podcasting, HD Radio and HD multicasting, RDS, and music downloads are all considered ways to "monetize" the station. Let's take a look at each of these... Read the rest and comment here.
01-14-06 Al and Keith ... separated at birth?
01-13-06 CCU continues thinning the herd ... Effective today Calvin Davis and Lou Thimes Jr. are no longer employees of Clear Channel Broadcasting. All questions regarding Gospel 1600 programming should be directed to me until further notice. (signed) Chuck Atkins, Operations Manager/KMJM/KATZ AM&FM, Program Director/KMJM. Could this have something to do with a recent visit by the Suits? Comment here.

01-13-06 Who's in charge of The Bull ... now that Steve Geoffries has been transferred elswhere? Greenwood would be a good choice, but I bet he doesn't want it.
01-11-06 Diane Toroian Keaggy ... covers the radio beat for the STL P-D, and she does a terrible job of it. Here's an example of her most recent mistake-laden effort...
01-11-06 Damn, this is real 21st Century thinking ... I was using one of these to monitor remotes and listen to and record music 24 years ago. Back then, of course, it was AM/FM/Cassette in just one slightly larger unit. How far we've come..*sigh*..and my Sanyo was cheaper. Okay, less memory...
01-10-06 Secret Squirrel spins on ... KTRS: Former KTRS newsman Shawn "Puffy" Balint is set to return to The Big 550's newsroom on January 23rd; no word yet on daypart or position. This is good news for the News Department. Shawn is a great guy to work with, has a terriffic voice and is a hard worker. He'll be taking over for the soon-to-depart Brian Hauswirth who has taken a job as press flack for the Department of Corrections and leaves next week.
01-09-06 RAMS ANNOUNCER JACK SNOW DIES ... from KTVI/Fox2:
Longtime St. Louis Rams broadcaster Jack Snow is dead at the age of 62. A Rams spokesman says family members were with Snow when he died at Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis. The Rams' radio color analyst had been hospitalized on and off since October with a staph infection. His condition worsened in late December. Snow was drafted by the old Los Angeles Rams out of Notre Dame in 1965. He played eleven seasons at wide receiver and retired in 1975. During his broadcast career he also helped out during practices, mostly as a volunteer with the Rams' receivers. Snow was last in the booth November 20th during a home loss to Arizona. Survivors include his son, San Francisco Giants first baseman J-T Snow.
   Jack Snow has passed. A vibrant, charismatic life force has left us this evening. God Bless, and welcome, Jack Snow. Comment here.
01-09-06 Welcome to SatRad, Howard ... we're still listening. FamilyMediaGuide.com auditors counted 77 uses of the f-bomb on the debut Stern show as well as many other instances that would have drawn the attention of the FCC had Stern been broadcasting over public airwaves.
01-09-06 The Stern-stink is spreading ... and Tom Calhoun is on the case: Stern has been the "anti-Christ" to my vision of what a good broadcaster should be for as long as I can remember. But give the guy credit for finding a way to make radio pay off in a big way for himself. He has always been about shock and money. Read the rest of his excellent commentary on Stern's debut on Sirius.
01-08-06 Before there was Franklin Oliver Pinion ... there was Grady Grit and a News Director who would occasionally change voices and record "breaking actualities" as the newsmaker. Thanks to MB contributor dajuhl for the tip on this 1972 aircheck from Ricky Irwin's great Top 40 site.
01-07-06 What's your station's mousetrap? Al Ries, who, with Jack Trout, wrote the seminal marketing handbook Positioning late last century, examines Google's mousetrap and how they continue to be a success. Read it here.
01-07-06 Big meeting at KTRS ... All the FNG's got together in the station's Board Room, starting at 2PM Friday, before their Monday start. What was discussed, beyond promotion and audience sharing? I'd have loved to have been a fly on the wall there...
01-07-06 So who is the new KTRS PD, Al Brady Law? Al is an enormously successful radio PD, with successes in music and talk radio. Here are some links, found in a simple Google search, in which Al is mentioned or featured:: Brady 1; Brady 2; Brady 3; Brady 4; Brady 5; Brady 6; Brady 7; Brady 8; Brady 9; Brady 10; Brady 11. After you've read them, comment here
01-06-06 Clear Channel ... to offer free video. Next week, CCU will begin testing a free video-on-demand service on some of its radio station websites as part of a strategy to bolster its Internet presence. Through the service, between 2,000-3,000 music videos from Warner Music Group and Universal Music Group and an unnamed, third label group will be featured on selected station websites. How do these guys make money?
01-06-06 KMOX goes NASCAR ... Starting 2/17 at 7PM it'll be the Kenny Wallace show on KMOX. Kenny says: This is a radio station I grew up my whole life listening to. It's real good talk and sports radio and I'm excited about it. I'll broadcast from my motorhome on Friday nights. Rusty or some other special guests will do the show when I'm racing in the Busch Series on Friday nights. More here
01-06-06 Passings ... Former syndicated radio all-nighter Art Bell's wife, Ramona, at 47, in her sleep, of asthma, and singer Lou Rawls, at 72, of lung cancer.
01-04-06 Noory figures out the fastest way to the wallet ... is thru PPV specials. From R & R: [George] will be joined by a group of top psychics and futurists to foretell the year ahead in an Events On Demand pay-per-view special airing Jan. 12. Guests joining Noory for the television event include Sean David Morton; Ed "Dr. Doom" Dames; Hans Christian King; Dr. Louis "The Modern Day Nostradamus" Turi; Stan Deyo; Dr. Art Rosengaren; Joseph Jacobs; and Glynis McCants, "The Numbers Lady." $9.95 to view, info here and here. And I thought it was cool when a friend of mine had an action figure and a cartoon character based on his personna...you go, GN!!
01-04-06 WHHL staffs up ... From R & R: Garth Adams, OM of Radio One's Urban WHHL (Hot 104)/St. Louis, tells R&R that the station has hired Craig Blac as PD/morning host. Blac was most recently at co-owned CHR/Rhythmic WDHT/Dayton, where he was also PD. Blac previously was PD of Radio One's then-Urban WFUN/St. Louis before the station flipped to Urban AC last year. In addition, WHHL has hired C-Note for middays and market vet Staci Static for afternoons.
01-04-06 Secret Squirrel spins on ... Clear Channel: Quiet cuts at CC - some full-time support staff have been cut to part time, and other full-timers have been given heavier work loads. Plus local payola problems may be coming to a head and there might be a change looming at The Bull...corporate-types coming in this week.
01-04-06 MSM meltdown ... The mining tragedy in West Virginia has been followed by reporters for almost two days; one body was found and the news that twelve others had survived was sent around the world by broadcast and cable nets; it turned out to be untrue, all but one miner had died. Only CNN carried the tragic results real-time. As of 2AM (CT) no other tv-net except CNN, cable or broadcast, was still carrying the story, presuming the original report of a dozen survivors was still true. FNC finally picked it up at about 2:10AM (CT). Where the hell was ABC, CBS, NBC on this? Nothing on the broadcast channels except syndicated BS and paid programming. Comment here

01-03-06 Memo from Les Hollander ... to KYKY/KEZK staff 1/3/06: Beth Davis will be leaving CBS Radio St. Louis effective January 10th. She will be pursuing opportunities with Clear Channel as DOS of their Chicago cluster. Effective immediately, Kevin Robinson will assume the responsibility of interim GM.
01-03-06 Nineteen years ago today ... in a townhouse in Creve Coeur, Carroll and I were married. It was the single best thing that had happened to me in my life up to that point and she remains the focal point of my existence. Growing older together might be distressing for some, but Mrs. A. has made the experience a real treasure. There's no one on Earth I'd rather have "grown up" with than Carroll.
01-02-06 Leo Chears is gone ... From fox2ktvi.com: Leo Chears, The man in the red vest has just passed away Monday. He was at Barnes-Jewish Hospital in the ICU, when this occured. Leo Chears is survived by his wife of over fifty years, Betty, and three children: Kelvin, Terri, and Florence. He also had five grandchildren, and a host of other close relatives and friends. Leo Chears, a Jazz Hall of Fame inductee, was heard over the radio waves of WSIE up until recently. Chears was also a legacy inductee into the St. Louis Radio Hall of Fame in 2002. Comment here

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