HAPPY LARP BIRTHDAYS


Chester Coleman (d)
Stuart Hamblen (d)
AJ Martin
Randy Thomas

The most comprehensive listing of 6,000 Los Angeles Radio People, spanning the last 57 years, is now available just by clicking on your favorite personality. The listings provide a colorful snapshot of where they came from, where and when they worked, and what they’re doing now. Enjoy!  

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(Jack Silver, Damien Lewis, Lisa Foxx, Laurie Allen, Gary Campbell, and Bruce Chandler)


Fight for Radio in New Car Models

(October 20, 2014) “We would discover a dirty little secret: Radio was losing its relevance in the eyes of many automakers,” revealed Eric Rhoads, publisher of the well-respected Radio Ink. Rhoads was re-capping a recent industry event, the DASH conference that was held in Detroit with the automaking industry.

“We have managed to help Detroit understand the importance of radio and what we can offer. Magical moments occurred when our roundtable discussions gave groups problems to discuss, and as car company executives at high levels talked with radio managers, programmers, and even some tech people about how they can improve one another's business. Word got out about DASH, and the automotive industry was present in full force,” continued Rhoads.

The keynote speaker was Gary Shapiro, head of the Consumer Electronics Association. Rhoads described him as “possibly the most powerful man in the world of innovation and electronics. And he wasn’t so kind about radio.

“Though gracious, Shapiro suggested that radio had ample warning from him and others that radio had to migrate to digital or it would one day be reinvented by others outside the industry. ‘Why didn't you invent Pandora or Spotify?’ he said. ‘You knew this day was coming. You should have invested to invent your new digital competition so you can control it.’ It was sobering, but inspirational at the same time. He suggested that radio can still step up to digital in a much bigger way – and must, because the migration by consumers to digital is inevitable.”

Rhoades said auto companies are currently designing 2018 models. “In 2015, they are expecting 40 percent of car owners to purchase cars that have in-car connectivity [without involving a smartphone]. They are designing updatable software so current models won't be entirely rendered obsolete as technology improves.”

“Radio must keep positive pressure on the industry to continue this dialogue, and to improve the dialogue at the dealer level as well,” said Rhoades.

Valerie Geller (l) spoke at the DASH event on Thursday about creating powerful radio programming for the car. She said building a broadcast base has nothing to do with radio itself. "It has everything to do with human beings connecting with other human beings.” She outlined a three-point plan for broadcasters –tell the truth, make it matter, and never be boring. She stressed that it’s essential for radio companies to target millennials by being on every available platform, and the content must be relevant to the audience.  

The challenge in keeping radio in cars is not new. I have personal warfare from my time working in Detroit.

In 1969, Gordon McLendon sent me to manage his station in Detroit, WWWW (W4). We turned the Beautiful Music station into a full-time live Oldies station (Gold is Beautiful was our branding, making a twist on the top of mind Black is Beautiful slogan). We had a very difficult time with the agencies, local and national, because fm was not standard equipment in any of the new cars. Basically W4 and WABX (an AOR “underground” station) were the only two viable fm stations. We had no support from our AM counterparts to launch a campaign toward the car manufacturers to make AM/FM receivers standard equipment. The dial was dominated by AM stations: CKLW, WKNR, WJR, WWJ and WCAR.

As I took on the challenge of getting fm into car radios as standard equipment solo, I never let a month go by during my tenure in Motor City without a face-to-face meeting with a car executive from one of the Big Three. It was an uphill fight. The car dealers were making as much as $300 by upgrading the standard AM radio with a Delco AM/FM radio. They had very little incentive to make it standard while they were getting extra money. I continued the fight when I launched WDRQ and we were making strong progress. GM was our first breakthrough with a competitive buy.

Time solved the fm dilemma as more and more station owners started broadcasting non-simulcast programming that was compelling. Valerie Geller, right on as usual, spoke to the issue that the content has to be relevant and the storytellers have to engage the listeners.

New PD Seach at KNX. Andy Ludlum exited his programming position at all-News KNX last month. Dan Kearney, market chief for CBS/LA, embarked on a nation-wide search. How is the search going? “Search is going well,” responded Kearney. “I’ve talked to a lot of good candidates. I will continue talking to additional candidates next week and then start narrowing down the list to my top three.” Hopefully in the midst of the “good” candidates, there is a GREAT programmer.

Overheard.

Hall of Fame LARP. Todd Wallace, formerly with KEZY-Anaheim in 1970, was inducted into the Arizona Broadcasters Association Hall of Fame for the Class of 2014. When I started my radio career in Lompoc, Todd was up the road at KSEE in Santa Maria. He’s a very talented broadcaster and a very nice guy who has spent 50 years in the radio business.

Halloran Promoted. Michael Halloran, veteran from KROQ, KLYY and KMXN, has been named program director at XTRA/fm (91X) in San Diego. He grew up in Detroit where he worked at WDET, WLLZ, WABX, WLBS, and WDTX. He was repeatedly fired for being "too radical."

In 1986, Michael headed west to work the night shift at 91X. He quickly became pd and was there for 10 years except for 8 months at KROQ. He left 91X in the spring of 1996 and joined KUPR-San Diego and stayed till the end of the year. In early 1998 he returned to programming at XHRM-San Diego, a station that Rolling Stone Magazine named one of the “Ten Stations in the U.S. That Doesn’t Suck.”

In March of 1999, Michael joined “Y107” and left within the year following a format/ownership change. Michael returned to the airwaves as fill in on KOGO-AM in San Diego in early 2000 for a few months, after which he was hired to program Spin Magazine’s web radio station. (Thanks for San Diego Union-Tribune for photo)

Youth Symphony Broadcast. K-Mozart 1260 celebrated the American Youth Symphony’s 50th Anniversary Season yesterday with a special broadcast featuring a total of six works by Mozart, Strauss, Gershwin, Britten, Paganini and Debussy.

The American Youth Symphony (AYS), is one of the nation’s leading pre-professional orchestras, whose mission is to inspire the future of a timeless art form by sharing exceptional, innovative concerts based on its landmark training of musicians ages 15-27.

#1 Best LARP. When I asked Bean for a current photo of Kevin and him for the posting of the #1 Best On-Air LARP of 2014, Bean sent me a photo of the morning show crew. This act of selflessness is very reflective of how the pair has been so generous in giving credit to those around them.

(Ralph Garman, Kevin Ryder, Bean, Lisa May, Beer Mug, Christine Fung, Omar Khan. Second row: Dave Sanchez
... Photo credit, Alex Rauch)

SPERDVAC. The group that preserves old-time radio, SPERDVAC, is having its annual convention next month, November 14-16. The conventions are really a lot of fun. If you missed the early days of radio, the convention fills the bill. This year, the group will present two episodes of Lum and Abner comics. Frank Bresee will talk about the storied career of Parley Baer, best known as a radio actor on The Whistler, Suspense, Tales of the Texas Rangers (as various local sheriffs), Dragnet, The CBS Radio Workshop, Lux Radio Theater, The Six Shooter, and Yours Truly, Johnny Dollar, to name a few. He played Chester, the unofficial deputy to Marshal Matt Dillon on Gunsmoke. And then a conversation with Dawn Wells, best known as Mary Ann on Gilligan’s Island. Registration forms are on line at www.sperdvac.com

Levine Play. “My play A OR B? has opened at the Falcon Theatre in Burbank,” emailed Ken Levine. “It’s a romantic comedy in the style of Sam & Diane on Cheers. The last names of the couple are Morgan & Steele.  I suspect only LARP members will appreciate that.” The play runs through November 16. More info by clicking the artwork.  

LARadio Rewind: October 20, 1972. KMET broadcasts a David Bowie concert from Santa Monica Civic Auditorium. The announcer is B. Mitchel Reed. The show is part of the "Ziggy Stardust & The Spiders From Mars" tour and is Bowie's first concert to be carried live on an fm station. The 17 songs will soon appear on bootlegged albums. David Bowie Live In Santa Monica 1972 would not have an official release until 1994, when it appeared on MainMan Records in the UK. Griffin Music released the album in the US in 1995. A reissue on EMI came out in 2008 and reached #41 on the Billboard Catalog Albums chart. (LARadio Rewind is meticulously prepared by Steve Thompson)

Funnie.
 

Email Monday

We GET Email …

** KNX Promotion

“As I’m sure you're aware, KNX continues its downward spiral. The ‘EBOLA UPDATE!’ station now feels the need to try and bribe folks with a chance to win $1,000, for just a phone call. Savvy listeners will notice that the announcer quickly slips in the phrase, ‘this CBS national promotion.’ Of course, that means you are competing against the entire country, rather than just KNX’s dwindling local audience. Yes, the station that was built on serving the public with ethical journalism, is now trying to fool them with a shady promotion.” – Ken Davis

** Response to Saul Levine

Saul Levine said the other day, ‘The message is that young people are not going into radio, and we have to go after talent and bring them into radio.’

As the head of the radio program at Mt. San Antonio College [Mt. SAC, Walnut, CA], I have to absolutely disagree with Saul. Young people are indeed going into radio. We have a vibrant, award-winning program with approximately 200 students.

This fall, we are moving into a brand new facility on campus with over $100,000 in new, state-of-the-art equipment. We have an FCC licensed station on campus, 90.1 KSAK, Mt. Rock Radio, as well as an Internet station, Audio8ball.com. Our students have won RTNA Golden Mics, APTRA Mark Twains, as well as being honored by College Broadcasters Inc., the Broadcast Education Association and the Intercollegiate Broadcasting System. 

CBI, BEA and IBS all exist solely because young people are going into radio. Their annual conventions attract hundreds, and in some cases thousands, of student broadcasters from around the country. College Radio is alive and well and thriving as these young people embrace not only traditional terrestrial broadcasting, but Internet Radio and podcasting as well. They are excited and creative and real assets to the stations that hire them for Internships and jobs. Radio will be in good hands for years to come and these are the broadcasters who will keep it alive. The University of La Verne and Fullerton College also have very active and growing radio broadcasting programs.” – Tammy Trujillo, www.TheRealTammyTrujillo.com

** MIA LARP

“I am looking for my stepfather from a long time ago, and was wondering if you could help me. His name is/was David L. Young, and he was originally from Hollywood. He was an actor, and a jazz disc jockey. 

Have you ever heard of him?  I think his family owned a printing company in Hollywood.  His father was good friends of Billy Graham's, and when Mr. Graham came to town he would stay with the Young family.

Any help you can give me would be greatly appreciated!” – Pamela Love, love.pamela@sbcglobal.net 


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