The most comprehensive listing of 6,000 Los Angeles Radio People, spanning the last 62 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. 



(Carmy Ferreri, Dan Avey, Jeff Baugh, and Sharon Dale)  

Email Saturday, 5.25.2019

** Laughing and Crying with Dave Zorn

Dave Zorn was a very special person. A very good journalist. We used to sit in studio off-air and talk about our earlier times in Vietnam – sometimes laugh and sometimes cry together.” – Ronnie Bradford

** Zorn Tribute

“Excellent tribute to Dave Zorn. Never knew him but certainly knew of his great work.” – Bob Sirkin

** Meruelo’s Acquisitions

"I think Meruelo Media is ill advised. Radio is a business with diminishing revenues, particularly in major markets.” – Bob Fox
** LARP Offspring Wedding

"My son Andy was born just 4 weeks after I went to work at CBS Radio in 1991. Last weekend we happily welcomed his bride Sommer to our family. Mazel!" - Rick Sietsema

** Cookin’ With Melinda

“I've been missing Melinda Lee on the air. I like to cook, but don't do it often, as I live by myself. But when in my car at the proper time, I always used to tune in to her. And, of course, during my tenure in LARadio, I worked with her too.

My heart goes out to her journey with Steve. As you may know, I just lost my wife, Gina Hahn, to Alzheimer’s. Keep up the good work, Don!” – Terry Saidel

** Melinda on KRLA

“I enjoyed your update on Melinda Lee but in listing her radio credits you forgot to mention KRLA/1110. In the late 1990s, her informative food show was sandwiched [pardon the pun] between the two Saturday shows I co-hosted on KRLA. She once commented that, because we frequently had celebrity guests in-studio for our shows, she had the opportunity to meet a number of celebs that she probably otherwise wouldn’t have.

So sorry to hear about her husband’s illness. I’m sure the tasty food she brings from home helps him tremendously.

Melinda truly is a delightful person, and I wish her – and Steve – the very best.” – Reed Berry

** Audio Fidelity

“I couldn’t agree more with what Fred Missman and Bill Schwarz said about the audio quality on satellite radio. Last year I had to use a rental car for about a week. It was equipped with Sirius/XM. After about a day, I was listening to terrestrial fm again.

I don’t see how anyone can pay for it! Sure, there's ‘variety’ but it just sounds bad! I think people are so used to listening to low quality mp3s on their phones that they don’t know what music is supposed to sound like!” – Brian Perez

** More Static

“Being both a subscriber to SiriusXM and a frequent listener to Saul Levine’s two HD-2 stations [88.1 for Adult Standards, and 105.1 for Oldies], I was very interested in reading Fred Missman’s letter-to-the-editor about sound-quality problems concerning HD, SiriusXM, and Internet stations. And I was fascinated to learn that at least in the technical radio world, HD stands for ‘hybrid digital,’ not ‘high definition.’

Even if the sound quality is not totally up to par [compared to main-frequency fm stations] I plan to continue listening to Saul Levine’s HD2 stations, as well as certain SiriusXM stations. I am much more concerned about the types of music offered than the purity of sound quality. I am not into Rap, Hip-Hop, and hard-rock music. I especially like songs that have a melody and great lyrics.

Turning to a slightly different matter, I am somewhat surprised that that Saul Levine’s Oldies station has not ‘made’ the ratings for the past few months. I suspect that one of the key factors for it is the relatively weak signal for 1260, especially at night. The other factor is that some of the songs featured were simply not top hits back in the 50’s, 60’s, and early 70’s.

If I were in charge of programming for the Oldies station, I would generally feature only those songs that achieved at least a Top 40 ranking, and include those that were in the MOR, instrumental, and Country-crossover categories. Of course, rock ‘n roll songs should predominate in an Oldies format.

In closing, keep up the good work, Don. I enjoy your column very much.” – Carl C. Spring, Jr., West Los Angeles

** Audio Challenges

“I listen to a lot of radio both AM and fm. I mostly bounce around the AM dial listening to Talk, News, and Dodger games, but I suppose more often than not, I wind up on 1260 AM listening to Oldies.

I hadn’t listened to 1260 in years, but when I read on this site a few years back that they would be switching to an Oldies format, I figured I would give it a try as I was not a fan of the direction that KRTH had gone. On 1260, I heard Beatles, Beach Boys, Chuck Berry and Little Richard, but I think the moment I realized it was a station that really had something going was when I heard Ike & Tina Turner’s River Deep and Mountain High. I was hooked.

I often find myself driving to the west side of town on Saturday nights and while I wasn’t a big fan during the late 70’s and early 80’s, I now find myself easily amused listening to Disco Saturday Night on the way over and back. Recently they started playing music of the 1970’s on Sunday nights, so I have more ‘destination listening’ on the weekends.

I listen to the radio on a RADIO. I like the sound of AM radio when it is being listened thru a radio as it has the nostalgic sound that I grew up with. Maybe I’m just old fashioned, but I only listen to streaming if I have no other choice.

One day while in the office, 1260 was playing Elton John’s Crocodile Rock and I thought something sounded different. It seemed to be an odd mix. The little organ/synth that doubles the piano in the intro wasn’t there and Elton’s voice sounded different, like it wasn’t his lead but a separate vocal overdub. I thought perhaps it was just my radio.

A few weeks later I was driving in Pasadena and a song started that sounded familiar. It was just guitar and drums going chung, chunka-chung, chunka-chung and I was thinking I know this song but something is missing. After five bars the vocal came in with Jim Morrison singing Light My Fire. What was missing? THERE WAS NO ORGAN AT ALL. The whole organ solo played during the intro was gone.

Then I remembered when I used to listen to 1260 years back, when their format was playing Standards and Jazz. I would hear Dinah Washington’s recording of What A Difference A Day Makes, and there were only the oohs and aahs from the background singers. You could barely hear an echoey lead vocal from Dinah mixed way, way in the back. I also remembered hearing some recordings of Count Basie, where you heard none of the melody played by the saxes [except for some leakage into the other mics] and only the Count plinking and planking on the piano every once in a while, as was his style. 

What I had always suspected – and still do – is that in order to play stereo recordings on their mono AM signal, they would only play either the right or left channel over the air to avoid phase cancellation. I got a little bugged because I’m sure that somewhere Mr. Levine and Co. could find mono recordings of songs all the way up thru the late 70’s as AM still had many pop music stations all over the country until the 80’s. It doesn’t matter on songs from the earlier rock era but stuff recorded after the mid-60’s in stereo [or new stereo mixes of the older songs] have certain instruments or even vocals exclusively on the right or left channel, and that was problematic if you are only playing one channel. I was especially bothered when I heard Beatles tracks played with missing instrumentation because there was no reason to play the stereo recordings as they released a whole boxed set of all their recordings in mono. 

Speaking of the Beatles and odd sounds coming out of my radio, a year ago I was driving up the 2 freeway in Eagle Rock and when I hit my preset to 1260, I couldn’t believe my ears. I didn’t think anyone would believe me unless I recorded it so I hit the camera button on my dash-mounted phone and started the video recorder.  If you click this link, you will not only see the air conditioning vent on my Toyota, but hear the Beatles’ Yellow Submarine WITH NO VOCALS AT ALL. That’s right, no vocals, just the guitar and drums going chung-boom, chung-boom, chung-chung, boom-boom with sound-effects and the vocal gibberish during the verse. At the very end the band joins in singing the final chorus.

I wondered if anyone at the station was actually listening to what went out over the air? My semi-educated guess is that the station is playing the stereo recordings for a better-quality sound to those listening in stereo via streaming on their computers or phones with possibly Bluetooth speakers. 

If this is the case than I don’t quite understand who they are trying to please? Is it the small number of people live streaming on their computers at work? Or is it the people listening to the stream on their phones with either junky small Bluetooth speakers with little or no stereo separation or maybe just the tiny speaker on the phone itself? 

Maybe the station should be trying to please the much larger group of listeners who are listening on actual radios? A good mono recording never killed anyone. Some of the stereo recordings from the 70’s would throw the lead vocals slightly off center to the left or right and also the guitars or drums panned even further to either side. Unfortunately, this can mean that you might hear a song with heavy vocals and drums with little or no bass and guitar, or the opposite. 

Can somebody out there with more knowledge on the subject please fill me in as to what is going on with the sound quality on AM 1260? Until then I will keep listening because I like the music, except when I hear all Ringo banging away and no John or Paul singing along.” – Gary Gibson, Montrose

** Comedy Voices

"Hi LARadio troopers! Just wanted to stop in after reading about many memorable LARadio updates and memories. For longtime radio employees and fans, I was one of those anonymous 'drop-in' voice talents for over 20 years on the Rick Dees Morning Show in the KHJ-AM days, then following along into the KIIS/fm years. I was the voice of airhead John Revolting, a convenience store owner. All the while I was voicing and acting on cartoons, tv, and films.

After hearing of all the various 'radio related' books from hosts, programming, and stations, I had an idea that I don't recall reading. Should a radio buff like to pick up on this, and include a section on those who were part of the back-up scene in personality driven shows, such as the Rick Dees Show, which had used talents as myself, pick of the crop comic talents like Jeff Altman and Frank Welker. Then of course you have the Howard Stern Show of sidekicks, like Billy West and Jackie Martling.

If anyone is putting on a radio-oriented convention, a great idea might be to have a panel of back-up voices, characters, and personalities. It may be fun to hear about character creation for radio, or how it used to be.

On a past post you ran on Dr. David Viscott, I must say I was a big fan. I even made a few cassette tapes on his various KABC shows, about topics from creativity to emotions. I use much of his advice to get through life and daily situations as he instructed. I even have about 6 hours from his late-night KNBC tv call in show, from how to cope with the overwhelming (Iraq) war news and family situations.

Well, glad to reach you to pop my head up and say hi, keep up the great work, and long live radio! As mentioned, I am now found this time, providing spokesperson, character, animation, and sound-a-likes for tv, film, and video games.” – Greg Berg,

** KFC Answer

“No, but apparently an abundance of Chalupas.” – Don Elliot

Melinda Lee is Out of the Kitchen and Busier Than Ever 

(May 24, 2019) The delightful LARadio foodie Melinda Lee has checked in. Following a delicious stay at KFI, KABC and KNX, Melinda is officially retired, yet busier than ever.

Her start in radio was just a matter of gumption. She was working as a caterer in Malibu. In 1985, she called Bob Sims, program director at KNX. She filled in for one “Food News Hour” and an award-winning career followed.

Right now, her husband Steve is living in a Skilled Nursing Facility near Griffith Park, where he has been for more than three years. “He has an uncommon illness called transverse myelitis (to abbreviate, it is an inflammation of the spinal cord which has left him unable to walk, among other things) and a little bit of dementia, although not Alzheimer’s,” emailed Melinda. She visits him a few times a week and brings him sushi and homemade food he likes.

“He’s not a fan of the facility’s food, nor does he read or play games or anything, but they (the staff) are warm and friendly, and attentive. They take good care of him, which I am no longer able to do alone at home.”

Melinda is writing a book (“a major effort,” she admits), trying to learn to sculpt, and “finding it surprisingly difficult to find time for all the things I was expecting to find time for when I retired.”  

Melinda continued: “The closing-the-business event took a much longer time than one might think – like turning an ocean liner around in the middle of the ocean – but, as I complete the transition, more freedom comes with it, and a greater feeling of liberation.”

She is a daily reader of LARadio. “I was particularly saddened to read of the passing of Tom Hatten. A few notes from him had accumulated on my desk (as I procrastinated in responding to them, awaiting achievement of just the tone I wished). I don’t have the heart to toss them out, containing, as they do, examples of his quirky, elegant humor and stylish handwriting. I enjoy (I know, everyone does!) keeping abreast of the fortunes and adventures of my old pals and acquaintances. You do a great – and entertaining – service to the radio broadcast industry.”

LARadio is a BIG fan of Melinda Lee for a whole bunch of reasons. We wish her well.

In other news: Rita Pardue, Ms. Senior California 2018 was the featured speaker at USC Trojan Affiliates Year End Celebration event … The Chicago White Sox is celebrating the 40th anniversary of Steve Dahl’s (former KPPC) Disco Demolition, according to Chicago's Robert Feder. Steve will also throw out the first pitch … Westwood One News correspondent Jim Roope won a Deadline Club Award for best “Radio or Audio Feature Reporting” for his 2018 report “Las Vegas: Remembering and Healing.” The award is bestowed by the NY Society of Professional Journalists for reporting across all media platforms, including newspapers, magazines, radio, digital, and tv. Jim is heard locally on KABC … Congratulations to Ken Davis on his 20th wedding anniversary … Jimmy Kimmel (ex-KROQ) was the producer with Norman Lear scoring big Wednesday night with a re-staging of two Lear classics. Woody Harrelson was Archie Bunker from All in the Family and Jamie Foxx as George from The Jeffersons. Jennifer sang The Jeffersons’ Movin On Up theme song. Marisa Tomei played Edith Bunker ... SiriusXM's 60s on 6 channel is playing the Top 100 "Red, White and Blue" songs in celebration of Memorial Weekend. Let's guess the titles - White Rabbit, Blue Velvet, and Snoopy vs the Red Baron. I'm sure you can do better ... Sandy and Wink Martindale just returned from Nashville where they were guests of TBN’s Huckabee show to air this weekend, Saturday and Sunday at 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. "In honor of Memorial Day, Governor Huckabee asked Wink to recite his recording of Deck of Cards and tell the story behind it," emailed Sandy.

KXOS Movin' to Meruelo Group 

  (May 23, 2019) Many stories about L.A. radio have been about what’s happening with the national conglomerates. There’s iHeart and Cumulus entering and exiting bankruptcy, while Entercom is still engaged with the quandaries of purchasing CBS Radio. Saul Levine notwithstanding, it’s been an open question about whether a local company could ever be a major player on the local airwaves.

The answer may be the Meruelo Media Group, who has been on an apparent recent buying spree. The Downey-based company has entered into agreements with 93.9 Holdings, Inc. and Grupo Radio Centro Los Angeles to purchase Regional Mexican KXOS/fm (Radio Centro 93.9, formerly Movin' 93.9). This pending deal follows Meruelo Media's recent acquisition of KLOS from Cumulus, which is expected to close in the third quarter of 2019.

After the customary government approvals, KXOS will become the seventh station in Meruelo's Los Angeles media cluster, joining KPWR, KDAY, KDEY-FM, KWHY/tv (Channel 22) and KBEH/tv (Channel 63).

"The acquisition of 93.9/fm KXOS is a key piece in our media division expansion strategy," stated Alex Meruelo, chairman and ceo. "Our group has done an amazing job curating some of the most recognizable local media brands into one extremely powerful portfolio." Otto Padron, president/coo of Meruelo Media added, "What an amazing few weeks these have been! Adding these spectacular call letters to our full-market fm radio station SoCal cluster authenticates our hyper-local media strategy to super-serve clients, partners and our community. We are also looking forward to a productive multimedia content relationship with our friends of Grupo Radio Centro Mexico."

Padron also stated that Meruelo Media will launch with Grupo Radio Centro an all-News Spanish-language format using one of KXOS’s HD Radio channels. They will also work with the Mexican broadcaster to develop other multimedia content for Meruelo's KWHY/tv. Meruelo Media expects the transaction to be completed in the third quarter of 2019, after customary regulatory approvals are obtained.  
Norm Garr sent an hour of unscoped Robert W. Morgan (93/KHJ on April 2, 1973) 

Longtime Manager at KABC Looks in Rearview Mirror

(May 22, 2019) Recently a Nostalgia Sunday piece from five years ago noting the passing of Ben Hoberman appeared. Former KABC general manager George Green was prompted to share some thoughts about Ben and his time with ABC:

"I joined KABC radio in 1960, after spending a year at KABC/tv. I was too young to fit in with the old timers at the television station. Ben had just arrived from being the gm at WABC in New York. Yes, I was a little astonished when he told the staff that we were going to turn KABC into an all-Talk station. There were a few stations in the country that did have talk shows but none were all-Talk.

I remember walking down the street near the station, wondering how I was going to sell this station. I think when we began we may have had about 150,000 listeners.

As the station began to attract listeners, I quickly learned that getting results for our advertisers was the key to our success, rather than the number of listeners. Joe Pyne was one of the first talkers and his famous response to one of his listeners was 'GO GARGLE WITH RAZOR BLADES.’ A shocking response in 1960. 

The station did grow, and I spent the first five years as a young salesman. Then the sales manager who became the manager was a man named Phil Brestoff, who was my boss for those five years. Then Ben hired Ira Laufer to the position of general sales manager. Ira was lured into leaving KABC for a job as the general manager at KHJ Television. 

Bob Fox, a good friend of Ira’s and mine, recommended me to replace Ira, which I did. I was Ben’s gsm for 14 years from 1965 to 1979, before Ben got his promotion to be president of the entire radio division in New York.

I was making a national sales call in New York and I was sitting across from the media buyer I was talking to, when I was called to the phone to take a call from Phil Brestoff, who asked me to come over to see him. I knew then what was going to happen. I remember the day of the KABC staff meeting when Ben announced to the staff that he was going to New York, and I was going to be the general manager of the station. WOW! What now?

When we walked out of the conference room, I asked Ben ‘what do I do now?’ He responded with a quick, ‘You will find your way to do a good job.’ I think I did a good job. The station had more different advertisers than any other station in Los Angeles. 

When I retired in 1996, the station was valued at almost 100 million dollars. My radio career was over at KABC and there was never a day in the almost 37 years that I regretted. It was a fun time in my life and every day was a joy going to work.

Someone asked me what one event during my career at KABC changed the direction of my life. Without a doubt it was the acquisition the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1974. Perhaps the biggest mistake any management team made was by Jim Wesley, who was the gsm of KFI in 1974, and his manager Biggie Nevins. Peter O’Malley had just taken over the responsibility of being the president of the Los Angeles Dodgers. His father, Walter O’Malley, was the man responsible for making the decision to take the Dodgers out of Brooklyn and bring them to the west coast. 

KFI was the first station picked to air all the games of the LA Dodgers, including spring training games. Almost all of the spring training games were played and aired during the day. Jim and Biggie decided they wanted to air these games at night rather in real time during the day. Peter O’Malley said no to their request.
Ben Hoberman (in photo with Ronald Reagan) wisely approached Peter O’Malley and told him that KABC would be delighted to carry the spring training games. THAT WAS IT! KABC got a one-year contract to carry the games. Then another one-year contract. Then a series of three-year deals before Merritt Willey, the marketing man at the Dodgers and I made several five-year deals. As I remember, we quickly shook hands on many of the contracts with little negotiation between us, other than the amount of money that we would pay the Dodgers for the rights to the games.

My life changed right then and there. I was at three or four games a week for all the years we carried the games. I was the guest of the Dodgers at Vero Beach every year. Peter and I became good friends. He trusted me to deliver what I had promised. And thanks to the Dodgers, we had the top radio ratings in Los Angeles for many years. I am proud to say I have two World Series rings hanging on the wall in my office, 1981 and 1988!

I often think of Ben Hoberman who led the way for me for many years. As a summary, I have had a good life, loving every day. My advice to everyone reading this – ENJOY EVERY DAY! LIFE IS SHORT!” – George Green

Howard Stern Doing What He Does Best

(May 21, 2019) Howard Stern is the master of all things marketable and promotable. Especially himself. He’s got a new book, Howard Stern Comes Again. The self-proclaimed “King of All Media” and former KLSX morning man has carefully cherry-picked the crème of the crop in media outlets to once again get headlines.

The Hollywood Reporter (thanks to THR for use of the artwork) gave him the cover along with eight, count ‘em EIGHT, pages of copy and pictures. Whether you think he is making big self-reflections on his life and career or attempting to sell a book, he knows how to generate buzz.

Regardless of what you think, he’s thinking about the hourglass, “and the sand emptying.” He paints in his spare time and the author concludes, “Still it’s hard to imagine the guy who regularly sneaks onto Twitter to gauge listener reactions is really ready to hang it all up. His eyes, which have been darting around the studio for the past hour-and-a-half, suddenly settle on the microphone hanging high about his desk: ‘To walk away from what I’m good at? I don’t even know that I have it 100 percent right yet. And maybe there’s more to explore…’”

Hear Ache. Speaking of Howard Stern, he created more headlines recently with a feud over heated disagreement over comments Wendy Williams made about him on her talk show. Apparently, they have since mended their friendship. She claimed that Stern had lost his edge and was “so Hollywood,” to which he responded by calling her a “jealous bitch.” The pair seem to have called a truce. Howard regrets his comments made toward the former radio personality turned talk show host. “That was me at my worst. I thought she was saying that I was a piece of s— and I sucked. But as [I hear it] now, I don’t see it as an offense at all.” … KPFK’s Bill Gardner was playing the Top 25 r&b songs from the early 1950s on his Saturday Rhapsody in Black program. The top 10 included the two Annie (Had a Baby and Work With Me) songs, along with Chords’ Sh-Boom. The number one song was 60-Minute Man by the Dominoes … LA Magazine has a delight story about “Secrets of the Chateau” by Hailey Eber. Details are contained in a new book. The storied hotel has only 63 rooms, which is more than that on one floor of the Hollywood Roosevelt. The author was asked to recount the most surprising thing in the research. “Roman Polanski and Sharon Tate got pregnant there and left because Sharon didn’t want to bring a baby back to a hotel. A pregnant Tate was later brutally murdered by the Manson family in Benedict Canyon.”

Track 6:

  • Adam J. Demarais (KRLA News)
  • Shadoe Stevens (KRLA)
  • Paul Harvey (story on Rick Dees)
  • Lohman & Barkley (soaper)
  • 94/fm Jingle
  • Lloyd Petit (KMPC)
  • Phil Hendrie (Turkey promo)
  • Rich Fields (KODJ)
  • Raimondo & Evans (KROQ) call to Charlie Tuna (KHTZ)
  • Frank Bingman (KLAC)
  • Gary Owens (KMPC)

Track 7:

  • Scott Shannon (Pirate Radio Sign-On)
  • Merrill Shindler (Food Talk)
  • Gary Moore/Patty Lotz (B-100)
  • Magic Johnson Promo for KIIS
  • Tom Leykis (KFI, story on John Rook & Michael Jackson)
  • Bob Crane (KNX)
  • Dr. Dean Edell (KFI)
  • Robert W. Morgan (KMPC)
  • KMPC Jingle

Pick a Track and listen to the sounds of LARadio

A Side of KNX's Dave Zorn That Will Make Your Heart Go Pitter Patter

(May 20, 2019) For Dave Zorn, radio was something he did, not who he was. We were lucky to share Dave for 24 years at KNX. His radio career spanned 36 years, having started his career in Phoenix.

And now, we are lucky once again.

Just before Dave died on July 30, 2018, he asked his wife Carolynn to bring his manuscript to the hospital. “We thought we had several weeks of hospice care, but it was only ten days. He asked me to promise that I would publish this book,” said Carolynn.

Some Final Thoughts arrived over the weekend. The pages turn easily. They float lazily like a feather as they sway from side to side. You will recognize some of what you think you know about Dave and his career but there is oh, so much more.

Dave suffered from cardiac issues in his later years. In 2005, he recalled when his cardiologist supervised the defibrillation of his heart 42 times. He flat-lined three times. Dave talks about the experience (“white light or no white light”). His decision to retire was made for him.

Dave includes the letter he sent to his colleagues. He was fond of the behind the scenes people at KNX. “They are the wittiest, most playful and a downright witty staff.”

He says the smartest thing he ever did was to join the Marines. Dave takes us into battle during the Vietnam War, then the story of his return with fellow veteran Ronnie Bradford decades later when they met with Vietnamese officers.

Some Final Thoughts includes love letters to Carolynn, anniversary notes, poems and even Christmas letters. On their 21st anniversary, Dave wrote: “Twenty-one years after marrying you, I am a much better man, and it’s all because of you. We are so good for each other. We make sacrifices for each other and make compromises for each other and do things for each other. I know that that’s a big part of what love is all about.”

On his 50th birthday, Dave writes a moving letter to his parents, Lil and Ed, thanking them for his strong sense of patriotism, integrity, family, responsibility, decency, and introducing him to God. Dave quipped near the end of his heartfelt letter, “thanks for not stopping at two children.”
 He takes us back to his childhood home in rural Connecticut. You can almost hear the ring of the Good Humor Ice Cream man cruising down the dusty room. He relished in the carefree days of cookouts featuring hamburgers, hot dogs, and frosty lemonade.

The love story between Dave and Carolynn started in 1965 when they got engaged. But they were separated by the Vietnam War. Thirty years later, he contacts her again. The pull of first love draws them together again. He shares thoughts with her in a very revealing letter in 1994. “When I returned from Vietnam, I was traumatized by the friends I lost, the close calls I had, and the conditions we had to endure. I was so emotionally messed up at that point I’m not sure I was ready to be a good husband to anyone. I’ve never stopped loving you.” The book includes his marriage proposal.

You will fall in love with Dave and Carolynn. We should all be grateful that Dave made her promise that his memoir be available to all of us. Click the artwork to purchase the book. 
In other news: KABC’s Jillian Barberie has been an open book about her journey with cancer and chemo. On Saturday, she had good news and Tweeted: “I woke up to sunshine and mild bone pain. But I got out of bed at 6 which is not normal for me on a weekend. I feel stronger. I’m so grateful I started to cry happy tears!” … Just as I was wondering what happened to "HOT 92.3" morning co-host Michelle Visage (far left with RuPaul) there she is in the current issue of US Magazine … Adam Carolla is set for the Howard Stern show this morning … Anyone have an idea how to reach the Chuck Cecil family? There is interest in carrying his ‘Swingin’ Years’ Big Band show … Whotta’ hoot at the Chumash Theatre Friday night. It was the Golden Boys concert with Frankie Avalon, Bobby Rydell, and Fabian (minus Fabian due to illness). I guess that happens when you pass your mid-70s. Promoters replaced Fabian with Gary U.S. Bonds. Yeah for New Orleans. Gary appeared on the first seasons of Shindig and Hollywood a Go Go and for being almost 80, he was on fire. His backup singers were his wife of 54 years and his daughter … Eric Tracy is at UCLA this morning for a couple of surgical procedures. “My City of Hope cancer doctor is concerned about a nodule on my epiglottis. That’s the little thingy (sorry for the technical jargon) that covers your body cavity when you swallow.” … Brian Whitman is celebrating seven years doing mornings at 870/KRLA. 

Email Saturday, 5.19.2019

**Comparing ratings

“Why would any of us denigrate KIRN’s programming by comparing it to KABC’s. Let’s stop the nonsensical comparisons and wish them continued success.” – Greg Glaser

** Condolences to Conway, Jr.

“Please post my sincere condolences to Tim Conway Jr. I had the pleasure of working with him on our days at KLSX / 97.1 FM. Like two passing ships in the night, we had our time on Sunday mornings where I had my show and he came on to do his show.

May your dad rest now for he has giving loads and lots of fun entertainment, I still watch McHale’s Navy!” – Nelson Salsa Fernandez

** ALS Disease

“You’re so right, ALS is a very terrible disease. 

My brother Augie Nieto was diagnosed in 2004 with ALS, and he has battled to stay alive and to make a difference. He started a research facility in Cambridge, Massachusetts called ALS-TDI. Augie started Augie’s Quest to raise research funds to find a cure for this insidious disease. He’s reached over $ 65,000,000 to date. And ALS-TDI now has a treatment for those newly diagnosed with ALS, that is today under FDA guidance as being the first of its kind in the first stage of human trials.

KOST’s Mark Wallengren lost his brother due to ALS. Augie refuses to die quietly. If you’re curious about what Augie is doing to find a cure, his website is  I’m sorry you had to experience this heartache so up close and personal. The world lost a lovely and contagiously personable lady who gave the world you. God bless your mom and you.” – Steve Nieto, Yorba Linda
 ** Me Mom

“Thank you for sharing your mother with us. I am so sorry that ALS still is taking the best from our loved ones, and I hope that in our lifetime there will be if not a cure, at least a medical treatment to stall it until a cure is found. It’s only been 3-1/2 years since my mother died, and yesterday was filled with well-meaning reminders and wishes from the grocery store to neighbors.

But the mention of flowers for your mother made me smile. My mother always preferred candy and pins from my father for our births and holidays. She cleaned up during May because of her birthday and wedding anniversary falling within weeks of Mother's Day. Thank you again for your words and for LARP!” – Julie T. Byers

** National News Coverage or Lack Thereof

“The discussion of how radio covers news events reiterates some points I asked at a June 6, 2009 luncheon hosted by Don Barrett.

For many years, when I was growing up in New Jersey, we could depend on radio for always running live coverage of important events, whether it was news conferences, space shots, or even long-form UN Security Council meetings. Seemingly in the early 70s, something began to change. I especially noticed something during the coverage of the Apollo 14 mission, when radio networks (and their affiliates) were running only five minute reports twice an hour, while all three tv networks were covering the moon walks for several continuous hours.

Of course, radio has done a great job with covering the Watergate hearings and the assassination attempt of President Reagan. However, by 4 p.m. on September 11, 2001, you could hardly find any radio network coverage, yet tv network coverage was running about 90 consecutive hours.

Currently you cannot find many Presidential speeches offered live on radio without a satellite or raw network feed. And I long for the good old days, when political conventions were covered gavel-to-gavel, both on radio and tv." - Chime Hart

** Music Quality

“Bill Schwarz is exactly right. It’s not mp3 audio (on KKGO / HD2), but it’s the same concept, where a choice is made to compress the audio. Why do we do that? Computers can only process information so fast, and bandwidths come with limitations, so where the computer would normally use 100 sample points to describe a waveform, a person might instead choose to use 10 sample points to describe that waveform. Doing that allows us – or anyone – to send the same ‘audio’ using a tenth of the computer power, or in the case of HD FM channels, fitting the same song into a narrow bandwidth.

The HD FM channels are not nearly as wide as the main channels, and something has to give to fit audio in there. So the waveform is described by the computer-assigned sample points, but not quite as accurately as the original that has ten times the number of sample points, and as a result you will hear flaws from time to time when the audio sampling dots aren’t able to as precisely reproduce the original.

The confusion comes from our industry calling these FM sub-channels ‘HD,’ without clearly explaining that the HD doesn't stand for ‘High Definition’ like it does in tv, but rather ‘Hybrid Digital.’ 

BTW – you will hear this same digital compression issue with satellite-delivered audio subscriptions, for the same reasons. In fact, the quality of the audio experience in cars with satellite radio is shockingly bad, with digital compression errors – much worse than ours – being the norm. I’m surprised people pay so much for such poor audio quality. This is the same case with most streaming audio on the web. And, yes, when you take an mp3 track – audio that is already compressed – and digitally compress it further on one of these services, you can see how the error rates would increase even more from the original audio.

Neil Young is right in his campaign to improve the quality of music audio. I don’t know what the answer is. We are doing the best we can with the tools we have to work with to deliver interesting, worthy alternative formats to the L.A. listening audience. But yeah, the bandwidths are small on these HD channels, and we are squeezing as many digits through them as we can, but the limited capabilities of these Hybrid Digital channels don’t allow us the luxury of sending out the kind of audio that Neil Young would approve of. Thanks for letting us explain!” – Fred Missman, Mt. Wilson FM Broadcasters

** Audio Quality

“Well, now we know. I am also aghast at the same audio quality I hear on SiriusXM. I can’t believe anyone would pay for music that sounds like that, but I have a friend that does. I regularly get tortured by his satellite radio with songs I used to hear in high fidelity, back in the day.

Not too long ago, most scientists concluded that the universe was finite, including Albert Einstein. One who did not was Dr. Edwin Hubble, who has the space telescope named after him. He was able to prove through spectral photography aimed at certain stars that not only was the universe not finite, but expanding! Indeed, the guy who says the emperor has no clothes occupies a lonely space.

That much said, I actually deeply admire Saul Levine and his maverick ways. In an industry of yes-men, Saul serving audiences that others can’t or won’t is sorely needed!” – Bill Schwarz, Ontario

KNX's Thom Tran to MC Army Event 

(May 17, 2019)  His voice is known to thousands of KNX news radio listeners as the man helping make their daily commutes easier. Thousands more know him as the hilariously funny creator of the “GIs of Comedy” Tour. Others know him as a soldier and armed forces leader. Thom Tran now adds another assignment, when he will be the master of ceremonies at The Greater Los Angeles Chapter of the Association of the United States Army Ball. The event will take place next month at the Westin Hotel in Long Beach.

Thom created the “GIs of Comedy” Tour to help his brothers and sisters in arms, both active duty and veterans, using the healing power of laughter. He knows first-hand how traumatic a combat deployment can be on both body and mind. Another reason was to help heal his own injuries. Thom enlisted in the United States Army at 18 years of age before he even finished high school.

After joining the Army, he spent his entire career as a Communications Sergeant as well as a Civil Affairs Sergeant within the United States Army’s Special Operations Community.

In 2003, four days after crossing the border into Iraq, Thom was shot in the head, when a sniper’s bullet found its way to the back of his skull. He bandaged himself up, continued the mission, and finished his 12-month tour in Iraq. Thom also works as a writer, producer, actor, and military consultant to Hollywood films and television shows, having appeared on NCIS: Los AngelesSEAL Team, and the ABC comedy, Black-Ish.

In other news: Larry Van Nuys, celebrating 50 years of a marriage with the delightful Marsha, sent an update on his activities. “I did an interview about my career with a courageous and talented young man who suffers from Asperger's Disease. He has an on-line radio show.” The interview is here … We had a surprise on Mother’s Day our Peace Corp son Tyler calling from Zambia airport. He was being transported to Johannesburg. As he was starting his fifth week in Zambia, he fell from his bicycle and broke his collarbone. He got to the hospital and following surgery they attached a plate over the area. After two days in the hospital he was sent to rehab facility where he is now spending the next two weeks. The plan is for him to return to Zambia in two weeks where he will resume his Peace Corps training. After six months he is supposed to return to the hospital in Johannesburg where they will remove the plate and assess the healing. And how are your kids doing? … On May 10, the ubiquitous Rollye James interviewed Neil Ross about his book, Vocal Recall. You can hear it here …    If you are a LARP and have written a book, we have started a section to promote your book. Scroll down just before the Archives section. Just let us know if you want your book displayed and a link where they can buy it … Headed to Chumash Casino tonight for a real Oldie But Goodie show with Frankie Avalon, Fabian, and Bobby Rydell. Let me know if you might be there.

How I Met Your Mother. “I lost my mom,” is how Teresa Strasser, former co-host with Peter Tilden at KABC, started her Mother’s Day story.

No, I literally lost her. The box from the Neptune Society filled with her ashes (Tamara) ashes was just too much for me to deal with when it arrived by US Mail three years ago. So, I asked Daniel (my husband) to find a good spot for her, just a temporary location until I could manage to face dispersing her, or putting her in some sort of vase, or sprinkling her at sea, or at the Berkeley Flea Market, or wherever.

Well, I was finally ready to come to terms with The Box. However, nobody could find mom. She wasn't ‘lost’ lost, because where could she have gone, really? But it was a relief when she turned up, still inside her taped-up cardboard shipping box, which had been placed inside of a decorative wooden box, stacked below a smaller, matching wooden box, just next to the television in our living room. It's where she would want to be, and that's why I'm still not ready to move her, or part with her, or hold some stupid ceremony reciting poetry and blasting Bridge Over Troubled Water from a tinny Bluetooth speaker.

And if you've gotten this far, odds are you're okay with some death-y mom talk. Maybe you're also grieving this time of year, a mother you lost, or sort of lost, or just never had, some other maternal bond that broke, or just never quite delivered, in the way the post office once delivered Tammy.

Mother's Day can be a tough time for the grieving, no matter how long it's been, no matter what the loss. It's a box that's always filled with ashes, and even if you don't know exactly where it is, you feel it.  

Another story of an accidental UberPOOL ride she took through San Francisco hours after her mom died is here

Teresa added: “Happy Mother's Day to everyone, even if it feels fucked up. Just remember, ‘When you're weary, feeling small, when tears are in your eyes, my mom would have told you to dry them all, suck it up and get your shit together.’”
From David Grudt's LA Times ad collection - May 16, 1969

Erica Farber Woman of the Year 

(May 16, 2019) LARP Erica Farber has been awarded Woman of the Year by TALKERS magazine. The Radio Advertising Bureau (RAB) president/ceo is the recipient of its 20th annual Judy Jarvis Memorial Award for Outstanding Contributions to Talk Radio by a Woman, also known as the “Woman of the Year” award. 

Erica joined the RAB as executive vp in 2011 and ascended to its leadership in April of 2012. Prior to that, Farber served more than a dozen years as publisher/ceo of the historic radio trade publication Radio & Records. Her extraordinary career in the radio business also includes a 12-year stint in various top management capacities at INTEREP, one of radio’s leading rep firms, including serving as its executive vice president/radio development director. She was also a significant pioneer in the history of women breaking the glass ceiling in the management arena of the major market radio station business. 

During the early years of her career, she held positions at KRTH, KABC/tv, and KIIS-AM. In 1975, she was appointed general sales manager of WROR/fm-Boston and was promoted to general manager in June of that year. Her success then led to an appointment as VP/general manager of WXLO-New York in 1976. 

“We have just scratched the surface of this great radio woman’s work history in today’s TALKERS story," said Michael Harrison, publisher of TALKERS. "Erica could have justifiably claimed this honor many times during her stellar career and she has been awarded literally dozens of industry awards and accolades since her days in local radio management and sales.”  Harrison adds, “We look forward to day when a specific women’s award in radio becomes an obsolete concept." Past recipients of the award include: Caroline Beasley, Mary Berner, Ginny Morris, Julie Talbott, Robin Quivers, Robin Bertolucci, Heather Cohen, Stephanie Miller, Randi Rhodes, and Laura Ingraham.

Thanks to Michael Harrison for this fascinating story about our industry

Tim Conway, Jr. Loses His Father

(May 15, 2019) Our condolences to Tim Conway, Jr., host of the evening show at KFI, on the passing of his father. Beloved actor and comedian Tim Conway died on Tuesday at the age of 85. Word first reached us yesterday morning via a Tweet from KFI.

The actor is best known for his work on The Carol Burnett Show. Everyone has a favorite skit. (Ours is in the dentist chair below.) He was nominated for 13 Emmys and won six during the course of his career, including four for his work on "The Carol Burnett Show," and two more for guest appearances on Coach and 30 Rock.

“The passing of Tim Conway brought back many memories,” emailed Harvey Kern. “For years, he hosted the Tim Conway Celebrity Golf Tournament in Thousand Oaks and invited many of his friends in the entertainment industry. They raised tons of money for charities. I was privileged to broadcast from the tournament on KNJO (92.7/fm).  Harvey Korman, also gone, always had things to say about our names. Rest in Peace.”

In other news: Angie Fitzsimmons will join mornings at Country KKGO later this month. "Angie is one of the most exciting air personalities I have encountered in my years of management," emailed Saul Levine. "Her background in being associated with Carson Daly is a big plus. Her air work will be delivered on 105.1 in uncompressed full fidelity 20,000 cycle audio." Angie was born and raised in Chicago, where she began her radio career as an intern and worked her way up to becoming the executive producer for a top rated, nationally syndicated morning show. After her marriage, she loaded up the truck and moved to Los Angeles where she joined the Adam Carolla Show before landing a role with the Carson Daly show on AMP Radio. After seven years with Daly, she left radio to pursue a certification as a Pilates instructor and raise her family of three boys (including twins) … KKGO Digital Director Adam Bookbinder joins the air staff for weekends. “If you would have told me one day I'd have my own on-air shift on a Los Angeles radio station, I would have told you that you’re crazy,” Adam posted on Facebook” … In a related move, Gary Campbell exits his part-time role at KKGO and K-SURF after 12 years … Jimmy Kimmel, former KROQer, has agreed to a new three-year contract extension to continue as host and executive producer of Jimmy Kimmel Live, which will bring his ABC talk show to 20 seasons … Rick Dees been on the Water Diet. “You eat 3 small meals and drink 12 glasses of water a day,” said Rick. “I lost 7 pounds in two days. MY BLADDER FELL OUT.”

KOST With the Most

(May 14, 2019) KOST continues to be the host with the most, dominating the top spot in the just-released April PPM Nielsen Audio survey. The “Soft Hits” station leads in 6+ by almost a full point over K-EARTH. Rounding out the top five are KTWV (the WAVE), JACK/fm (KCBS/fm) and MY/fm (KBIG). KIIS fell out of the top five for the first time in – well it seems like –  forever. At seventh place is Talker KFI. Spanish language formats round out the Top 10. Some highlights: All-News KNX drops four consecutive months and out of the top 10. Rocker KLOS (newly acquired by Meruelo) is up. Sports KLAC had a big bump likely due to start of the baseball season and the Dodgers, though KSPN (ESPN L.A.) maintained their audience. The Persian station, KIRN, beat KABC. KFI’s online stream also beat 790 AM. KAMP (AMP Radio) is going in the wrong direction.

1. KOST (AC) 6.5 - 6.3
2. KRTH (Classic Hits) 5.5 - 5.5
3. KTWV (Rhythmic AC)  4.7 - 5.0
4. KCBS (JACK/fm) 4.1. - 4.2
5. KBIG (Hot AC) 4.2 - 4.1
6. KIIS (Top 40/M) 4.3 - 4.0
7. KFI (Talk) 3.8 - 3.7
8. KLAX (Regional Mexican) 3.1 - 3.1
    KXOL (Spanish AC) 3.0 - 3.1
10. KLVE (Spanish Contemporary) 3.6 - 3.0
      KPWR (Top 40/R) 2.7 - 3.0

12. KLOS (Classic Rock) 2.6 - 2.8
      KNX (News) 3.1 - 2.8
      KRRL (Urban) 2.6 - 2.8
15. KKGO (Country) 2.3 - 2.6
      KRCD (Spanish Adult Hits) 2.5 - 2.6
17. KLYY (Spanish Adult Hits) 2.1 - 2.5
18. KAMP (Top 40/R) 2.7 - 2.3
      KPCC (News/Talk) 2.1 - 2.3
      KUSC (Classical) 2.4 - 2.3
      KYSR (Alternative) 2.4 - 2.3
22. KROQ (Alternative) 2.3 - 2.0
23. KSCA (Regional Mexican) 1.5 - 1.8
24. KBUE (Regional Mexican) 2.1 - 1.7
25. KKLQ (Christian Contemporary) 1.2 - 1.6
26. KJLH (Urban AC) 1.9 - 1.5
27. KLAC (Sports) o.7 - 1.3
      KXOS (Regional Mexican) 0.9 - 1.3
29. KCRW (Variety) 1.3 - 1.1
       KDAY (Rhythmic AC) 1.2 - 1.1
      KSPN (Sports) 1.1 - 1.1
32. KKJZ (Jazz) 0.9 - 0.9
33. KEIB (Talk) 0.8 - 0.8
       KFSH (Christian Contemporary) 0.7 - 0.8
       KRLA (Talk) 0.9 - 0.8
36. KFI (Stream) 0.6 - 0.7
       KIRN (Persian) 0.5 - 0.7
       KWIZ (Spanish Variety) 0.7 - 0.7
39. KABC (Talk) 0.5 - 0.6
40. KDLD (Regional Mexican) 0.4 - 0.5
       KFWB (Regional Mexican) 0.6 - 0.5
KROQ's Kevin Ryder confronts his boss, Kevin Weatherly

Dees New Book Bakes the Top 40

(May 13, 2019) What’s cookin’ with the former morning king of LARadio, Rick Dees? While other radio people are writing books about their nomadic journey of working in small markets while attempting to get to Los Angeles or New York, Rick has put together a scrumptious coffee table book with his All-Time Top 40 Greatest Desserts.

Not only do the recipes appear to die for, but the photography is A+, which whets the appetite even more and helps inspire heating up the oven. In fact, Dees autographed the book with "Let’s bake! Just pre-heat to 350 ‘Dees-grees."

Some of his favorites include: “Rick’s Red Velvet Cake,” “Butterscotch Pecan Souffle,” “Cola Cake,” and “Grandma’s Cake with Hot Bourbon Sauce.” Rick said the recipe is “a flavorful reminder of grandmothers everywhere.” Be sure to try the "World's #1 Hot Fudge Sauce" on page 180. "That's our own personal favorite. You can't go wrong with that warm delight generously drizzled atop 3 scoops of Trader Joe's French Vanilla ice cream.....MMMMMMMMMM," wrote Dees. Click on the book to learn more.

In other news: Good news from Big Bear. Larry “Supermouth” Huffman is home from his heart bypass surgery. “Because I’ve never done drugs, which seems unthinkable knowing this industry back in the 60’s / 70’s, I’m very sensitive to pain killers. At one point I completely flipped out after an I.V. injection and it took four burly hospital orderlies to hold me down and immediately inject a child’s amount of Valium into me.” … My son Tyler was in Zambia completing his fifth week with the Peace Corps when he was tossed from his bike and broke his collarbone. We are awaiting word from the hospital in Johannesburg if he will have to come home … Former KFI Talk show hostess Marcia Clark was co-writer and co-creator on a new tv series, The Fix. The show didn’t last for very long. It has been canceled. The show centered on an L.A. D.A. who suffers a devastating defeat when prosecuting an A-list actor for double murder – sound familiar? … Brad “Martini” Chambers has been splitting his time between Studio City and Boise, which is his wife’s hometown. Brad had been spending 7 – 10 days of each month in Boise, the rest in Southern California. “That has become more and more difficult,” wrote Brad to his fan base. He’s moving to Boise full-time while still playing the tasty music on his Internet radio station … George Moore, veteran of KPWR, KGFJ, KJLH, KMPC and KACE, wrote that he’s doing okay after undergoing surgery on his neck, back in March. “Since then, I have been healing and resting. it's been very painful and draining on my body. There is still a way to go, but I hope to do that and fully recover” … April PPM ratings will be sent to all of you on the mailing list this afternoon ... It was so much fun to see all the pictures of your mothers displayed on Facebook.
CBS Sunday Morning, May 12, 2019

My Mom on Mother's Day
Written at the time of her passing

My mom passed away on Christmas Eve 2003. In 1970 she was diagnosed with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (Lou Gehrig’s Disease). It is a crappy disease. (Okay, all diseases are crappy.) But ALS is a particularly debilitating disease because it methodically disengages the sufferer, paralyzing the body limb by limb while keeping the patient’s mental agility intact. 

My 15 and 16-year-olds only know their grandmother as someone confined to a bed. As an only child, my charge was to be a parent to my own kids and also to my parents. For the past 10 years, my days started with changing her diapers and my evenings ended with changing her diapers.   

But there were vibrant times before this crappy disease began its slow journey to rob the body of all vital functions.

My mom introduced me to the beach and the ocean, and I've carried on a love affair with both ever since.

My parents moved from Boston to Hollywood (503 Sycamore Street) when I was three months old. My mom and I traveled by bus to the beach at Santa Monica. You can imagine the delight for my mom who grew up in the snow of New York and was in Kirk Douglas’ graduating class at St. Lawrence University.

We eventually convinced my father that we should move to Santa Monica and I went to John Muir Elementary, John Adams Junior High, and Santa Monica High School, a mere four blocks from the beach. (Photo of my mother and father in 1943 preparing for the drive to the beach)

I was running a radio station in Detroit in 1970 when my parents came for a Christmas visit. I received a call from my father warning me that mother’s foot was dragging and please don’t mention it to her. Hardly a unique request from a family that would have denied the presence of an elephant in the living room. It was the beginning of the physical deterioration of her body. 

On Sundays her home was filled with flowers. Mother was confined to a wheelchair before she was bedridden, but every Sunday, our home was still filled with flowers. A member of the Santa Monica Presbyterian Church would bring flowers from that morning’s service. The flowers were really an excuse for a visit. The visitor would always leave our home in better spirits. That’s just the way my mom was. 

Even in her last days, the nurses and attendants at her convalescent home, plagued by their own personal challenges, would visit my mom just to get cheered up. 

Ruth Barrett’s ashes were scattered off the coast of Santa Monica. For decades she has been unable to sit on the beach or wade in the ocean, jumping over the endless parade of waves while giggling and laughing. 

As she took her last breath on Christmas Eve, this crappy disease finally won its battle. But she will be the eventual victor; finally at peace in the ocean she so loved. 

Email Saturday, 5.11.2019

** Vassegh’s Bright Future

“Nice piece on David Vassegh. When he started at the station, we all used to call him ‘youngster.’

He sure has come a long way since then. I’m so happy for his success as he is one of the nicest, most unassuming people I ever had the pleasure of working with. I expect that his future will be very bright.” – Bob Scott

** KABC Doing Something Wrong

“As your column illustrates today, KABC is the laughing stock of radio today. When your numbers are on par with Persian language programming in the ratings, you’re doing something wrong.” – Patrick Breen

** KABC and the Trojans

“Ha!! Hilariously brilliant observations by Tom Hoffarth!” – Greg Hardison

** Breaking News on Weekends

“Sadly, Perry Simon is correct. I don’t know much about San Diego radio but I know a lot about Los Angeles radio. Our all-News monopoly, KNX, offers great anchors and reporters. However, on weekends and often during the week, they rely heavily on audio from CBS2 rather than having radio staff to cover important local stories.

Visual references tell me nobody cares. The fact that no KNX reporters are on duty tells me nobody knows. Sad!” – Cam Currier

** Local Fire Not on the Radio

“I read Perry Michael Simon’s piece and two things came to mind. Ten years ago, we had the Station Fire in the San Gabriel Mountains. At the time, I was doing construction on my home in Montrose and had scaffolding surrounding the second floor. On a Saturday morning, I was on the scaffolding painting trim and listening to the radio. From the scaffolding, I had a perfect view of the mountains and I could see the smoke from the fire way off to the east, perhaps near Azusa. I noticed the fire started moving very rapidly to the west but the talk station I was listening to mentioned nothing. I switched stations to another talk station but still nothing. I switched to KNX Newsradio and heard a cooking show.

Within two hours, the fire had burned all the way to the Sunland-Tujunga area and still nothing on the radio. I went inside to watch tv news coverage and I found sports and infomercials. I guess the message is don’t have a deadly fire on the weekend.

On possibly a more important note, five years before that, I had a kid in elementary school in the Glendale School District where I volunteered one day a week. I was stuffing folders for the kids to bring home to their parents, which contained procedures in case of an emergency. One thing that stood out to me was in case of emergency at any Glendale school, parents were instructed to tune to the local Glendale radio station, 870 AM – KIEV. 

I knew that 870 hadn’t been KIEV for years and the idea that it was still a ‘local’ Glendale station made me wonder if there had been any communication between the Board of Education and station management for a long time, as KIEV [now KRLA] was mostly made up of syndicated programming throughout the day. The station was under new ownership [Salem] and I wondered if they had any knowledge at all about their supposed role in getting emergency information to the parents of school children, or if the board of education had any idea that the station wasn’t the local station as it had been when owned by the Beatons. I suppose it doesn't matter now that we get text alerts.” – Gary Gibson

** Anyone in the Building?

“I found Perry Michael Simon’s comments about the lack of local radio coverage very powerful. However I must mention his quote: ‘On a Saturday, the people in the building might not have had the news instinct to break into regular programming.’

I wouldn’t assume there was anyone in the building on a weekend!” – Neil Young

** Oldies Quality

“I realize at an age of 67, I am in a minority demographic. Nonetheless, I am still fascinated in hearing Oldies in stereo.

While most 45s were in mono until around 1969, many from albums or re-issued CDs are happily available in stereo. I happen to love the audio quality (on K-SURF) on 1260 in HD. However, once the station added an HD3 with light hits music on 105.1/fm, the station reduced the highs on K-SURF HD2 fm simulcast. It is hard enough finding home HD receivers with a simpler interface, but I settled on a 2007 Polk Audio radio.

As far as comparing fidelity around the dial, even on analog, the best would be KOST by far, nice and bright. The worst would be KCRW, where the highs are not nearly as good as KPCC/fm HD1.” – Chime Hart

** Oldie Audio

“Thank you for reminding your readers of Gardening Day. I am planting tomatoes today the conventional way.

Interesting that Bill Schwartz objects to the recordings we use on KSURF/fm 105.1 HD2. It is an Oldies format with recordings going back up to 70 years. When we tried to play updated remakes of a number of songs, the audience wanted the original recordings or the MP3 versions. K-SURF has several hundred thousand listeners and this is the first complaint we have heard of as to audio quality. But I welcome the publicity.

PS. I hope you are aware that there is a day in September designated as ‘Chardonnay Day.’ We should all participate on that day.” – Saul Levine

** Chuck Cecil

“I played Chuck Cecil’s Big Band show on the American Forces Korea Network (AFKN) more than a half century ago. Even then it would be hard to find big band music anywhere on the dial. How much rarer it is today to find the songs of my era.” – Steve (Fredericks) Liddick, former K-Earth News Director.

** Satellite for Swingin’ Years

“With the passing of Chuck Cecil, wouldn’t it be lovely if Sirius/XM Radio created a ‘Swinging Years’ channel, featuring the many shows, interviews and music Chuck gave us over the years? Hopefully those great shows exist on tape.” – Arlen Peters

** The Wild I-Tralian

“Having had an abusive father, I would find a way to the steps of the KRLA studios at the hotel grounds in Pasadena to get away. Many times, I would find groups of kids on the station steps in the evening waiting for Dick Biondi (l) to show up. He always came in thru the front lobby door, not the side door to the engineering rooms. Mr. Biondi, unlike his radio act, was quiet, kind, with a big heart. I personally saw Biondi help kids with their homework. I've never forgotten when there was a girl in tears who was going to run away from home, and I watched Mr. Biondi console her and advise her not to make such a dangerous move.

Mr. Biondi always found time to talk to every ‘porch person’ before he would go in to work. Mr. Biondi was a class act, and truly cared about his fans who would camp out hours to see him. Yes, Biondi was ousted from KRLA in the Summer of Love, 1967, because his corny style didn’t go over with the changing vibes after Monterey Pop as the new drug culture and underground music becoming mainstream. But in December 1981, when KRLA brought Biondi back for a New Year’s Eve show on the Rose Parade route, the magic was still there. Longtime ‘porch people’ showed up on Colorado Blvd just to thank him for being someone who listened to them all those years ago. I was there too. And to my surprise, Dick remembered me, too, and invited me into the dj booth.” – Bill Earl,, Author, Dream-House (KRLA/1110 history book)

** Bugging You

“Funny picture about naked gardening — I’m afraid of bugs so I will not be attending.” – Mark Alyn

** Oliver Harris MIA

“Any chance you have any contact info on KJLH’s Oliver Harris? Just wanted to thank him for introducing me to Hank Crawford's music and his wonderful ‘Gemini Changes’ show every night...all these years later. I actually recorded a broadcast one night on reel-to-reel.” – Rick Bisetti

** Loss of Wild Bill

“Sorry to hear about the passing of Wild Bill Scott. He was a true original. He followed me at night on the original Loop in Chicago. Fearless and rebellious, a true rocker. Radio could use firebrands like Bill today.” – Sky Daniels

** Bridge to Kevin Klein at KROQ

Kevin Klein left a skid mark in San Diego last year. He was part of the kick-off of Entercom’s sports station at 97.3/fm.

The shock of the graphic, used in an ad publicizing their new morning show, caused Entercom to rebrand the station, as the Padres distanced themselves from Klein and mid-morning host Dan Sileo. Not only rebranding the station to ‘The Fan,’ the company had to pay an undisclosed fee for use of the photo.

The photo, of Coronado Bridge, is where many with mental health issues have taken their life. Klein never made it to the morning airwaves. Despite his errant error, he survived.

All the best, Kevin. Best wishes. Please come back to San Diego and leave lots of money at the resorts.” – Chris Carmichael

New News Anchor at KNX 

(May 10, 2019) The latest addition to the KNX anchor desk is Emily Valdez. She was a longtime tv reporter and anchor at KGTV in San Diego, after previously working in Cleveland at Fox 8 (WJW/tv).

Her stories have led to significant changes in the legal system. She once did a story on a paroled sex offender who went off his GPS monitoring device and had the run of the community, yet the public was never notified. Because of Emily’s report, then-California Governor, Arnold Schwarzenegger, took action. He issued an order to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, mandating they create a public alert system with photos of the wanted predators.

Emily was in the eye of the storm, covering hurricane Katrina in 2005 while living out of a car for a week. She gathered news during the day and reported live via satellite in the evening, as the city of New Orleans lay submerged under the deadly toxic water and crime in the streets ran rampant.

She also finds time to report on really important stories, such as the ransom kidnapping of a Bob’s Big Boy statue. Luckily, Big Boy was returned with only minor scratches. Emily also spent ten years in Bakersfield television.

She grew up in Los Angeles and Orange County, earning a B.A. from Cal State Northridge in Broadcast Journalism and an M.S. from University of Maryland in Life Sciences.

Emily started her broadcast reporting career in 1999 at News 21 in Rockville, Maryland. She has been won two regional news Emmy Awards and been nominated seven times.  
Smart Radio Folk. One doesn’t have to be smart to be in radio. Radio people have proven it over and over.

The latest is a BBC personality who posted a picture of a chimpanzee in a tweet about the royal baby born to Meghan and Harry. The posted photoshopped photo had an image of a couple holding hands with a chimpanzee dressed in clothes and the caption: “Royal baby leaves hospital.” BBC fired him and the personality posted that the post was an “enormous mistake.” You think?

In other news: MY/fm (KBIG) personality Billy Bush, who lost his lucrative Today show gig in 2016 in the wake of his uncomfortably close proximity to the now infamous Donald Trump / Access Hollywood tape, is getting another chance. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Bush has been hired to anchor Extra Extra, an updated version of the syndicated entertainment show, which will debut this fall when Extra moves to Fox … A big 7th Annual Music Industry Reunion this coming Monday night at the Canyon Club in Agoura. Be there or be square … Tammy Trujillo is about to launch a new podcast with Tim Piper, who has made many appearances performing as a John Lennon impressionist, including playing John in the movie The Linda McCartney Story. “Both Tim and I consider John Lennon to be far more than just one of the Beatles. Certainly as a member of that band he changed music forever. But he was also someone who wanted to change the world, get people talking to each other and find a way for us all to have a beautiful, peaceful existence. Just imagine what he would say if he was still here,” said Tammy.  Here’s a teaser listen … KIIS’ middayer Alex had a cute line this week, “Turn up the music, but if you are in your car looking for a street address, it is okay turn us down.”

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Archives April/May 2019: Passing Parade: Chuck Cecil; Brad Messer; LARPs win AllAccess Awards; Series on Podcasting; Bob McCormick exits California; Bob Eubanks dazzles telling Beatles stories; Ken Levine on podcasting; Mark & Brian reunite; Past and present music intersect; Mighty 1090 not so mighty; Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Radio Station - Nothing; J Cruz cruises to iHeart; KLOS sold to Meruelo; Ralph Lawler signing off; Talaya's Last Ride on The WAVE; Looney thoughts on LARadio; Steve Swenson to Tennessee NPR; New days for KCRW; Charlie Van Dyke reflections; Dave Hull returns to radio; Mark & Brian reunite; Money winners for 2018; Kat Corbett exits KROQ; Jim Rondeau to Northwest; Uncle Russ; Perry Michael Simon's essay on weekend news coverage; Dan Patrick health scare; Kevin Klein joins KROQ; Fight on for 'ol SC

Archives 1st Quarter 2019: Passing Parade: Sylvia Chase; Eva Ross Kilgore; David Horowitz; Richard Kimball; Super Dave Osborne, Harvey Mednick; Bruce Williams; Let's Go Trippin' with Dick Dale; Larry Van Nuys jumps into the (K)Surf; KABC shuffles line-up; LARP who died in 2018; Art Laboe set for PPB honor luncheon; Jaime Jarrin honored; Marketing lesson from Fiji Water Girl; Cindy Dole out styling; Saul Levine essay on his 105.1/fm beginnings; How will a recession hurt the radio biz?; Update on KFI reporter Hanna Scott; Series to preserve radio archives; Golden Night; 1,000 homes on site of KLOS/KABC; Video in cars; Jimmy Steal to Chicago; New head of Southern California Public Radio; Celebrating Scott St. James; Laughs are on Phil Hendrie; Afternooner like no other; Art Laboe honored by Pacific Pioneer Broadcasters; Wendy Williams show postponed indefinitely; KNX vet Diane Thompson set to retire; Delilah tells all; Motown at 60; Martoni's; Steve Harvey and Mo'nique in kerfuffle; It's news to Steve Gregory; Auspicious start for 88.5/fm; Triplets 10-year anniversary; How Pete Weber made the hockey team; We Will Rock You; Randy Keith is the piano man; Triplets partner in hope; History of Gary Theroux; New news from Diane Thompson; John Batchelor reveals he has cancer; Bean announces in leaving KROQ morning show; Actor Sal Mineo was a LARP; Sky Daniels retires from 88.5/fm; Ask Dr. Ruth; USC broadcast rights; Buzzards return to Hinckley, Ohio; Nancy Plum's new book; Elaine Perkins perks up the news; Podcast with Passion

Archives 4th Quarter 2018: Classic win for K-EARTH; Ellen K doubles down; Rachel Maddow profile; Imus lawsuit thrown out; Jeff Baugh's book; Gary Thompson was at right place, at the right time; Don Elliot reports from NAB/RAB Radio Show; Rocio Rivera gets more time at KFI; Johnny Gunn's new book gets dressed down; New life for KNX/fm; Passing Parade: Scott St. James; Hal Pickens, Ed Crook, John Lyle Campbell, Mike Parker, Dave Roberts; Bill Dudley plays a record; Invisible LARP; RJ Curtis hits jackpot; LA Times beats up Charley Steiner; KBIG begins with Poole; 93/KHJ gets benched; Allie MacKay's Journey; Al Wisked Away by Dallas;What did music stations talk about during World Series; Heaven is in Your Mind; Brother John source material; Gary Moore stands up for cancer; Jillian Barberie diagnosed with breast cancer; What's in your berry bag, Wolfman?; Flash! Bohemian Rhapsody is a Smash!; Mornings growing at 870/KRLA; Another Southern California Inferno; Ingraham transitions to podcasting; Nobody knows anything; Casey Kasem counts backwards to 48 Hours; Jim Hawthorne would have been 100; Best Broadcaster ever!; Wink a heavenly treasure; 2018 rearview review; Scott St. James remembered; Bob Cole to hell and back; VO artists sing for kids; KLAC raises 1/4 $; Highest paid radio people; Doug McIntyre is set to leave KABC after 22 years; Wally Clark falls; Vic the Brick feelin' you; KABC, By George Green; Art Vuolo's farewell party

Archives 3rd Quarter 2018: Anniversary of AT 40; Passing Parade: Ed Schultz, Johnny Morris, Fred Beaton, Dave Zorn; New Role for Kelli Gates; Art Laboe is One-of-a-Kind; Savage as Supreme; Vic the Brick is Feelin' You; Rita Pardue a thing of Senior beauty; Marcellus Wiley jumps team; Doug Dunlap has the keys to happiness; Highest paid LARP; Martoni LARP Noms; Former KIIS GM retires; Sad Sage Sylvester story; Carlucci, voice of Russia World Cup Games; Is there a Smart Radio? Springsteen on KMET; Is podcasting for you?; Rick Dees slated for Yucapia station; Time for a Southern California Radio Hall of Fame; National Radio Day; Big Boy makes unwanted news; Judging Amy Lewis; Jim Rome lookig for LARadio home' K-SURF adds morning personality; What keeps Kevin LeGrett up at night? Alex Cohen moving to new Specrum; Silver celebration at NBC Sports Radio; Jo Jo Wright takes his KIIS show to Beijing; Paxton Quigley, armed and strong with a new radio show; Mt. Rushmore of sports; Neil Ross pens new book; Highest paid radio people; Looney looks to add game show host to eclectic career; Burt Reynolds apologizes with a twinkle; Traffic reports won't be so Rosie (Wedel); Voice of Trojan basketball headed for Thunder; the night Elvira spent with Elvis

Archives 2nd Quarter 2018: Michael Benner's new book; Brian Beirne in concert; KNX celebrates 50 years; Uncle Joe to Townsquare; Amp says Yes to Yesi; Click and Clack to automotive Hall of Fame; When is an Oldie Not an Oldie? Passing Parade - Mark Morris, Bill Watson, Dex Allen, Dick Orkin, Bill Jenkins, Don Bustany, Arnie McClatchey, Mark Morris, Roger Collins, Art Bell, Mike Walker, Frank Bresee, Warren Duffy, John Mack Flanagan; 3 LA stations in revenue Top 10; NAB nominations and voting; Kimmel in People; Ted Leitner diagnosed with cancer; PPM re-issue issue; Lady LARPs of Grace; Dick Biondi out of WLS after six decades; 6-minute commercial load too much; Purely Personal with son's graduation and daughter's marriage; Len Chandler songs for Credibility Gap; Alfonzo Ortiz @KNX; THR award to Harvey; Stern cut and he's not happy; 2 LARPs on Time list of 2018 Most Influential; Ladd is back and Tribe thrilled; Larry Gifford diagnosed with Parkinson's; Is Savage being set-up; Walker needed for pd; Good Time Steve Mitchell to Georgia HOF;  LARPs nominated for HOF; Marriage of Alexandra Barrett; Lyon Queen; David Viscott king of psych Talker; Debunking myths of a dj; New day for Sue Fruend; Adam Carolla is driven to buy; Is the Bloom off the rose?; Paul Newman's cars; One of a Kind LARPs Series with Jim Ladd, Jim Healy; K-EARTH's Locks of Love excellent promotion; Good Day LA crew reunites at KABC; Baseball ratings; Jersey Boys interruption; Rita Wilde interview; LARPs inducted into Radio Hall of Fame

About the Publisher of, Don Barrett

As publisher of, Don Barrett chronicles radio news and lists 6,000 people in Los Angeles who work or have worked in radio in the past 60+ years. Barrett is a historian of contemporary Los Angeles radio history and author of Los Angeles Radio People, published in 1994. He published a second volume of the book a year later, along with the launch of a daily website column.

In 2013, he started as the radio columnist for the Orange County Register.

Barrett's Southern California roots (Santa Monica) include a bachelor's degree from Chapman University (Man of the Year, 1964). He also earned a master's in psychology. He spent 10 years in radio working as a disc jockey, program director and general manager (W4-Detroit and WDRQ-Detroit).

He launched KIQQ (K-100) Los Angeles in the early 1970s.

In the mid-1970s Don joined the motion picture business, working as a marketing executive at Columbia, Universal, and MGM/UA. Barrett was part of the marketing team that released E.T., Close Encounters of the Third Kind, Back to the Future, Thelma and Louise, Rocky and James Bond movies.

He also represented a number of films at the Cannes Film Festival.

He was the first recipient of TALKERS Magazine's Lifetime Achievement Award. Don has been honored with an honorary Golden Mike and Special Recognition from the Society of Professional Journalists. 

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Last modified: May 25, 2019