LARadio

2019

Compiled and Written by Don Barrett
Edited by Alan Oda


Jaime Jarrin Honored

(January 10, 2019) This weekend, beloved LA Dodgers broadcaster Jaime Jarrin will be presented with the Pioneer Award from the Professional Baseball Scouts Foundation at their 16th annual “In the Spirit of the Game” fundraiser. Former Dodgers manager Tommy Lasorda, who is on the Foundation’s board of directors, is due to present.

MLB Network, Larry King and others will combine to host the event. The PBSF was founded in 2003 in effort to assist baseball scouts who lose their jobs, retirement, suffer an illness, and other needs or setbacks.

For Jarrin, he’s set to be honored prior into heading into a 61st season as the Spanish-language voice of the Dodgers. He recently signed a multi-year contract extension that will take him through the 2020 season.

“I’m still enjoying it just as much as I did 60 years ago. I love what I do, and it’s a privilege for me to be able to do it,” Jaime said at the time his new deal was announced. “I have had the opportunity to work with the best of the best, ballplayers, broadcasters and staff, and I have been so fortunate throughout my career.” Jarrin’s tenure with the Dodgers began in 1959, their second season in Los Angeles. He was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1998 as the recipient of the Ford C. Frick Award, and previously received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
In Other News: Congratulations to Ron Shapiro, former pd at HOT 92.3. “It was 40 years ago today that I joined American Top 40 with Casey Kasem,” wrote Shapiro. “Everything that’s happened in my career since then is a direct result of working at Watermark. Learning the right way to do something, to the friends I made along the way, all stem from that family tree that took seed four decades ago. So many friends I made back then are still friends today." … Condolences to Michelle Kube Kelly on the passing of her father-in-law. “Steve Kelly knew everything you could know about every kind of racing there is. He spent years writing and taking photos for Hot Rod magazine, spending time in the pits at the Indy 500 and restoring his classic cars.” 
Batter Up. Jim Wesley arrived in 1973 at KFI radio, having been hired as general manager of the then-newly acquired Cox Broadcasting property. Cox had purchased KFI for $15 million, at that time the highest amount ever paid for a radio station. The 50,000-watt clear channel station was having a tough time finding a format that would be more successful.

“KFI is a massive operation. Turning it around is like changing the course of the Queen Elizabeth – it will take time," he told the LA Times at the time of his arrival. Wesley’s first action was relinquishing the broadcast rights of the MLB Dodgers. That move would help propel KABC’s ratings reign, but Wesley had his eye on finding an fm station.

A deal was reached with Dallas broadcaster Gordon McLendon, to purchase his KOST (103.5/fm) for $2.2 million. “I contacted McLendon by telephone when I heard from our Washington attorneys that he wanted to sell. We had been trying to make a deal for an fm station in Los Angeles for several months. I had met with several owners but could not reach an agreement.

Jim continued: "In our first telephone conversation, McLendon told me what he wanted for the station. We agreed on the deal during a second telephone call, which I made late in the evening from my kitchen at home in Woodland Hills to Gordon in London. He was on his way to an International conference of economists. Gordon and I met with our attorneys in Washington a few days later to work out the details of the purchase agreement. It was a quick and very pleasant negotiation. Gordon was a brilliant businessman and a delight to work with. He was one of the most charming and creative men I have ever met. He talked a lot about the development of his various formats, and although he was in the process of moving out of radio, he continued to think about new ideas for the medium and for television. I had hoped to see him again at the closing at his office in Dallas, but he was ill that day and we worked with his lawyer. I never had the pleasure of talking with him again.”

Some thought Wesley paid too much for KOST but it didn’t take long before the station was doing $2.2 million a month.
Zoo Radio. Scott Shannon was interviewed by Inside Radio recently. During the Q&A, Scott was asked for those who influenced him. “The two guys that I admired and learned the most from were both on KHJ in Los Angeles, Robert W. Morgan and The Real Don Steele. They each had a different style but both were very adept at painting word pictures in a very short period of time. Listening to them, I learned the value of what I like to call ‘suppress dynamics.’ Both sounded completely involved in what they were doing, they were exciting, entertaining, passionate about the station, the music and most importantly, they specialized in brevity. I still listen to recordings of their shows and they sound as fresh now as they did back in the 60s.”

Steve Kamer is the announcer on the Steve Harvey Show.
Steve recently appeared in the audience on Harvey's show. Why?
Listen by clicking artwork


Former KNX Reporter Dies 

  (January 9, 2019) Every year when we salute those LARP who died during the year, it is always done with compassion and reverence. You will read some interesting reactions to the class of 2018 in Email Saturday.

Tomm Looney wondered if I cringe following publication, for concern that I may have left someone off the list, like the flack that the Academy Awards broadcast seems to get each year. My attempt is to be cognizant of the importance of the listing and include everyone. But this year I was afraid I left someone off not by commission but by omission.

While I was preparing the Passing Parade 2018, word that Sylvia Chase had died reached my desk. I didn’t know that Sylvia was a LARP. It started with an email from Bob Sirkin, former KNX anchor, who wrote a note about Sylvia and a story that will appear in Email Saturday. When I reacted with concern that she really wasn’t a LARP, he read that she, indeed, spent some time at KNX. I contacted former KNX news director Ed Pyle, but her time would have been before his time. Ed then contacted longtime assignment editor Ronnie Bradford. “I just had a conversation with Ronnie who is really sorry to learn of Sylvia’s death. He says she was an excellent reporter who did a lot of long form product including documentaries and as the obit states, left the station for NY and the network. Doesn’t remember when.” Piecing together a number of obits on Sylvia, her time at KNX was 1969-70, before she left for New York.

Born in Minnesota, Chase moved to California to attend UCLA. She majored in English and then worked in politics and state government before getting a broadcasting job at KNX. She joined the staff of CBS News in New York in 1971 and moved to ABC a few years later.

She received a range of broadcasting rewards and was dubbed “the most trusted woman on TV” by TV Guide. During her time at 20/20, a survey by the magazine also pegged Chase as the top investigative reporter on any of the national newsmagazines.
Chase moved to San Francisco’s NBC station to be a local anchor. They touted her arrival with the slogan “The Chase Is On.” Her decision to move to the Bay Area came just two months after ABC killed an investigative segment she did on the links between Marilyn Monroe and the Kennedy family. Chase at the time brushed aside suggestions that the two incidents were related, but later wrote that the decision by ABC was a factor in her departure.

Whatever the cause, Chase became one of the Bay Area’s most visible news personalities of the late 1980s — not only anchoring newscasts but hosting prime-time news documentaries each year.

Chase returned to ABC News at the end of 1990. “I hate to leave the Bay Area, but if I’m going to get mugged it might as well be in New York,” Chase quipped to Chronicle columnist Herb Caen. She remained at ABC until 2001, then retired and purchased a home in Marin County. One of her colleagues remarked: “She belonged everywhere.”  


Travel back in time to a time when a newscast had verbs leaping out of the radio
and spit spraying from the mouth of the newscaster

PPB Set to Honor Art Laboe 

(January 8, 2019) By the time a Los Angeles Radio Person (LARP) spends 10 or even 25 years behind the microphone, it is usually time to end a career, either by one’s choice or the decision of management. So how’s about 75 years? That’s how long Art Laboe has been behind the mic. And finally, the Pacific Pioneer Broadcasters organization is going to salute him with a luncheon in his honor next month. Couldn’t happen to a nicer guy. If you click the artwork, here’s an AP article on Art. 

He Loves You. Chris Carter, host of Breakfast With the Beatles, checked in. “We kicked off our 35th year on the air in Southern California since the late-great Deirdre O’Donahue started the show in December of 1983 on KMET,” emailed Chris. “It’s my 19th year as host and Jackie DeShannon is in her 10th year as our official Beatles News Beat Gal. In addition to Sunday mornings on 95.5 KLOS, I’m also the morning man Monday – Friday's on Sirius/XM’s The Beatles Channel. And if that wasn’t enough, I’m also hosting another show every weekend called Chris Carter’s British Invasion, a four-hour show in Little Stevens Underground Garage (also on Sirius/XM radio). So that’s seven shows a week! Every month we broadcast LIVE from Morongo Casino. Gotta love it…yeah yeah yeah!”

In other news: George Johns asks: “How does a person who qualifies for food stamps, afford a thousand-dollar iPhone?” … Sean Parr, ex-KKGO, did a great job announcing the Sunday Golden Globes telecast … Mancow is now on WLS-Chicago in morning drive … Fred Dryer, NFL star and actor (Hunter), will pair with CRN Digital Talk Radio chief Mike Horn for a Saturday afternoon show on SiriusXM. “Sports Lounge with Fred Dryer” program is now airing on Dan Patrick Radio at noon … KFI news director Chris Little had an occasional habit of texting former Governor Jerry Brown. “I don’t know how I wound up with his number,” he wrote on Facebook. “We don’t really know each other but we have talked before. Today he called back and we talked for 7 minutes. He was at the Governor’s mansion, I was at Ralph’s. He asked about the station and mentioned that John & Ken couldn’t derail the gas tax. Other than that, no politics. We talked about Pandora, Spotify, podcasts and his retirement. Then we said good bye.”

The Passing Parade 2018
(January 7, 2019) We lost several beloved Los Angeles Radio People in 2018. Some were expected, while others came as a complete shock. Today we’ll take a minute to briefly recognize the LARP who left us in 2018.
Keith Jackson, January 12, (89) The folksy college football play-by-play announcer was a welcome treat every Saturday during the fall.

Originally from Seattle he didn't last long at KABC due to increased network commitments. One description of his folksy delivery: “Keith Jackson was like a big slab of country ham.” Another told the LA Times: “His calls were melodious, up and down the scale never losing the clippity-clop of his Southern upbringing.”

Vin Scully said of Jackson: “It might have been the result of his time in the Marines, but despite his old country boy technique, he had a quiet dignity about him.”
 
Joe Frank, January 15 (79) Joe contributed over 200 shows to KCRW. The LA Times called Joe "the most innovative radio dramatist in Los Angeles." His radio plays, Work in Progress, In the Dark, Somewhere Out There, and The Other Side, all aired on KCRW. Joe became a storytelling legend of public radio.

“The great radio artist of our time has passed away,” wrote Harry Shearer. “You will never hear anybody smarter, darker, funnier than Joe Frank.”  

Joe Langermann was born in 1939 in Strasbourg, France, to a Viennese mother and Polish father who were in flight from the Nazis. He was raised in New York, where he spent much of his childhood recovering from leg operations to correct clubfeet. He attended the prestigious Iowa Writers Workshop and was later by a private school in Manhattan.

Jack E. Sweeney, January 30 (87) Jack was a a 33-year veteran with Golden West Broadcasters.

“Jack was one of the nicest guys you could ever meet and work for,” said colleague Bob Koontz.

Born in Los Angeles on April 19, 1930, Jack graduated from Cathedral High School in 1947. He was drafted into the Army in 1950. After serving his country, he received a degree in Advertising from Woodbury College. In 1953, he married his high school sweetheart Lee Gallagher and they settled in San Marino. Jack began working in radio sales for 710/KMPC. In 1992, he retired as general sales manager. He enjoyed golf, horse racing, traveling, gardening, and cooking. He was an avid Angels and UCLA fan.
   

Mike Walker, February 16 (72) If you didn’t read the National Enquirer, perhaps you remember him from his three years at KABC or his weekly guesting on the Howard Stern show playing ‘The Gossip Game,’ [Walker read four stories and Stern had to guess which one was true]. Or maybe his foray as morning man at “Real Radio” KLSX. It could have been his newsmagazine, “National Enquirer TV.” Or the book he wrote in 2005, Rather Dumb: A Top Tabloid Reporter Tells CBS How to Do News. Walker co-wrote with Faye Resnick the #1 New York Times best-selling book about the O.J. Simpson murder trial, Nicole Brown Simpson: Private Diary of a Life Interrupted in 1994.

“The Hemingway of Gossip” — that’s how Howard Stern once described Mike Walker. To Geraldo Rivera, Walker was the “Guru of Gossip — the Dean of Celebrity News and a first-rate TV personality.” And Ryan Seacrest may have put it best when he asked: “Has Mike Walker ever missed a beat? Nope! Not to my knowledge. That guy impresses me — he always nails it!”

Lyle Kilgore, February 22 (89) For almost four decades, Lyle delivered the news in his famous dramatic style.

Lyle started at KHJ shortly after 93/KHJ "Boss Radio" was launched. For fans of early Top 40 radio, his booming voice made every story important. Verbs were so descriptive that they danced out of the radio.

"Ron Jacobs [pd at KHJ] told me that radio is like a roller coaster ride ... first you're up then you're down. I've worked the overnight. I emerged from the darkness as new operations director with a staff of 20. We covered riots, Charles Manson and the Hillside Strangler stories on 20/20 News," Lyle said when interviewed for Los Angeles Radio People.

For a brief time Lyle went into the cookie business. Before arriving at KHJ he worked the legendary Rock stations in the Inland Empire, KFXM and KMEN. "It has been a long and fun ride since the pioneering Rock stations in the Inland Empire. It's been an E ticket ride and I'm still on it and loving it!"

Paul Cassidy, March 1 (83) Paul, a colorful figure (l), was part of the LARadio scene from 1968 to 1981. He was at the helm when the new Ten-Q (KTNQ) was launched.

Paul started his radio career at KDKA-Pittsburgh in 1961 in the sales department. He spent 10 years with Westinghouse, working later at WIND-Chicago, then going to KFWB in January 1968 when it was still a music station.

In August 1971, Paul went to KHJ, where he was named manager just after two weeks at the iconic station. “My best memory of LA Radio, was 1971 when Don Imus and Robert W. Morgan were cavorting with the Billy Sol Hargus Act live in the KHJ studio. Reverend Billy was healing the hole in the records that Robert was playing! I called Robert to tell him that the FCC was on the way to the station and to get back to reality. Guess what, he did! Then came upstairs to ask, ‘are they really?’”

The RKO position lasted about a year, then Paul joined KLOS in sales before being moved to ABC sister station, KSFX-San Francisco. In October 1974 he moved back to L.A. to run KGBS AM & FM. In 1976, station owner Storer Broadcasting switched their AM property to rock ‘n roll, while KGBS/fm became “Gentle Country.” Paul became titular head of both operations. He was named vp in 1977. Paul was active in making KGBS/AM a 50,000 watt 24 hour operation rather than just a daytimer.
 
John Mack Flanagan, March 31 (71) John spent part of 1975 in Los Angeles at KHJ, but his hugest success happened in the Bay Area.

The San Francisco veteran called his brief stay at KHJ "the single biggest event in my career,” when I interviewed him for Los Angeles Radio People. “I had always dreamed of L.A., and Charlie Van Dyke asked me to assist and pull a couple of shifts."

In 1978, while working in the San Francisco market, John was Billboard Jock of the Year finalist. He was glad he didn't win, saying: "Never climb to the mountain top – the only way is down."

Raised in New Mexico, John started his radio career in the summer of 1964. He served in Vietnam before working in the Bay Area at KWSS-San Jose, K101, KSFO, KYA, and KBGG (“K-BIG 98.1),” as well as KFRC. He is a member of The Bay Area Radio Hall of Fame and National Radio DJ Hall of Fame. The organization wrote a beautiful tribute to John you can read here. He wrote a book about his life, Tight & Bright: A Diskjockey - Vietnam Memoir. John Mack Flanagan was named for the Western movie legend John Mack Brown.

“I've never wanted to be a relic. I never want to hear, 'Oh god, he was great in the 'Seventies,' or 'He was great in '64 in Lubbock, Texas.' I've never wanted that. I've always wanted people right now to go, 'Wow! It's him!'"

Don Pitts, April 7 (90) Don was a longtime voice-talent agent and radio personality. He represented a who’s-who of classic voice talent, including Orson Welles, Casey Kasem, Wolfman Jack, Rod Roddy, Robert W. Morgan, June Foray, Mel Blanc and Gary Owens.

He was well-known for his kind and friendly personality, and was much loved by his clients.

Don started in radio in 1945, but in the sixties and he made a move to Los Angeles and into representing other folks in front of microphones. An aircheck of Don working KGO and KYA is here.

“Blessed with boyish good looks but saddled with a thick, high voice, he wasn’t a natural radio star,” wrote Ben Fong Torres in the San Francisco Chronicle.


Art Bell, April 13 (72) For some strange, bizarre reason, it somehow seems fitting that Art died on Friday the 13th. 

No matter what you might have thought about what Art talked about – and that included the paranormal, abstract, conspiracies, and the world of UFOs – Art was a radio original. Broadcasting from a double-wide trailer in the Nevada desert for more than two decades, Art talked to his listeners in the middle of the night about their stories of alien abductions, crop circles, anthrax scares and, as he put it, all things “seen at the edge of vision.”

While serving in the US Air Force in the Vietnam War, Art indulged his childhood passion for radio by operating a pirate station that played anti-war music otherwise unavailable on official channels, broadcast to American servicemen. Following his time in the service, Art’s love of radio led him to working as a disc jockey for an English-language station in Japan. Over there, he set a Guinness World Record for broadcasting some 116 hours straight to raise funds to rescue over 100 Vietnamese orphans left stranded by the conflict in their home country.

Back in the states Art started his radio journey doing overnights on KDWN in Las Vegas. Syndicated nationally in 1993, Coast to Coast AM became a phenomenon. He frequently would end up on the yearly list of Best LARP. Bell was inducted into the Nevada Broadcasters Association Hall of Fame in 2006 and the National Radio Hall of Fame in 2008.

Roger Collins, April 23 (71) Roger loved his time at KFI, where he was music director and assistant pd. 

Born Paul Lancaster in Winslow, Arizona, he was director of instruction at the Los Angeles Broadcasters School during much of the 80s. He was also operations director of Breneman Radio Services and the Breneman Review.

After returning to Arizona, Roger produced video workshops for school kids at Northern Arizona University, and was a consultant to Native American education radio for the Navajo Nation. He also programmed KAFF FM/AM, KMGN/fm, KVNA-FM/AM and KZGL/fm. He went on to sales in Flagstaff.

Don Bustany, April 23 (89) Don was one of the last of the four original creators of the iconic American Top 40. “He was family to us and we got to spend time with him last weekend before he passed. We got to talk and laugh and hug each other one last time,” said Kerri Kasem, daughter of Casey Kasem. “Now he’s with his beloved wife Judy and my dad, along with countless friends.”

For those familiar with the recording of Casey’s outtakes from a recording session that have been widely circulated, Don is forever immortalized in the phrase, "Get Don on the phone!" Bustany had tv credits in addition to radio, and shared Casey’s activism in support of the Arab community.

In the 1970s and ’80s, Bustany was the camera coordinator and a director of The Bob Newhart Show and Mary Tyler Moore. He also served as the technical coordinator on several other television programs. Keep your feet on the ground, and keep reaching for the stars...

Mark Morris, May 2 (50s) “Mark was a gentleman,” said Johnny St. John Newton when he learned of Morris' passing. “He was first class all the way. He was very, very professional in his job.”

The native Los Angeleno grew up near Baldwin Park. He got the radio bug while working on Loyola Marymount University's college station, KXLU, where he was general manager for two years. During his tenure as manager, the staff won back-to-back awards as Radio Station of the Year. With a sparkle in his voice, he proclaimed his school the “Marines of God.” Mark did morning drive news and production at KKLA, then moving to SI Communications between 1988 and 1990.

Mark was also part of the morning drive team at KACE during its “Quiet Storm” period. While at KLSX in the mid 90’s, he was the host and producer of a syndicated NAC show “Night Songs” that was heard on over 20 stations.

Dex Allen, May 5 (74) A dj, radio executive (programming and sales), owner and most recently president/ceo of Pacific Start Communications, was just a small part of his legacy.  

Dex was best known for spearheading the “underground” movement at KPRI-San Diego. In the late 1960s, he drove to Southern California every weekend to work as a jock at KDAY (1969-70). Eventually he became general manager of several stations in San Diego. Dex made one of those rare journeys from dj to station owner.

Born Claude Turner in Ventura, Dex graduated from John Burroughs High School in Burbank and the University of Denver. His career can almost be broken down into decades. During the '60s Dex was a dj at KBLA, KTLN-Denver, KQV-Pittsburgh, KOL-Seattle, and KCBQ-San Diego. In the '70s he moved into radio sales and gm positions in San Diego. By the 1980s he was ready for station ownership. He created Commonwealth Broadcasting and KGGI/KMEN was his first purchase. He went on to own KROY-Sacramento, KMZQ-Las Vegas, KRST/KRZY/KOLT-Albuquerque and KYJT/KTTI/KBLU-Yuma.

Bill Watson, May 15 (88) Closely associated with legendary radio pioneer, Bill Drake, Watson was admired by friend and foe in the industry.

Watson got everyone's attention in the Inland Empire when within six months he took KMEN from 'Last to First.' At the peak of Watson's tenure, KMEN generated 70 shares which meant that 70% of the people listening to the radio were tuned into KMEN 1290. Watson was instrumental in bringing the Rolling Stones to San Bernardino's Swing Auditorium for their first performance on American soil. He very skillfully established the perfect pitch for the on-air presentation at KMEN and rode the wave of the Surf sound and the British Invasion. And he established himself and his fellow disc jockeys as celebrities in the region.

After 4 years at KMEN Watson left and became a programming consultant for other radio stations. Within a short time Watson teamed up with the legendary radio programmer Drake, who along with his partner Gene Chenault had been given the task of turning around the radio stations owned by RKO General, which included 93 KHJ in Los Angeles, KFRC in San Francisco, WRKO in Boston, and WOR/fm in New York City. Other stations under their direction included KGB in San Diego, CKLW in Detroit/Windsor, Ontario and KYNO in Fresno.

Together Watson and Drake worked their programming magic on these radio stations creating the "Boss Radio Format." Within a short time all of the stations enjoyed top ratings too. Later Watson was instrumental in producing the national version of the "The History of Rock and Roll," "The History of Country Music," and several other syndicated radio specials.
(Photo: Watson, The Real Don Steele, Bill Drake)

Frank Bresee, June 5 (88) Frank was an excellent  radio historian and character actor.

In 1942, Bresee was Alvin on the radio show Major Hopalong also starring Mel Blanc and Arthur Q. Bryan. Bryan was perhaps better known as the original voice of Elmer Fudd. Arthur later became a second father to Frank. The two often collaborated on projects. Bresee was also Little Beaver on the Red Ryder radio show until 1946.

In August of 1949, Bresee began hosting the “Golden Days of Radio” show with his large collection of transcription discs. He played early recordings from then-current radio shows while new shows were being broadcast. He wrote a book with artwork portraying every big radio show of its time.

Warren Duffy, June 13 (80) Warren was prominent on the Los Angeles airwaves as both an original voice of progressive rock and as a longtime host on Christian talk radio.

He helped launch the legendary progressive rocker KMET. Later he went to KDAY and then joined the Beach Boys as promotion director and put together their 15th anniversary tour. Warren soon found himself with a serious drug problem. He started his recovery in the late 1970s, leading to his religious conversion and renewing his faith through Robert Schuller Ministries. He became a pastor and eventually went to Salem Communication where he worked afternoon drive on KKLA for many years.

Arnie McClatchey, June 20 (76) Newer listeners to Southern California radio may have a tough time understanding that at one time there was radio exclusively for Orange County. As the population of the Southland began to spread, low powered AM station originating from L.A. had a hard time reaching the OC. Three of the leading OC stations in the 1960s and ‘70s had Arnie McClatchey as a common denominator. He was an innovator, programmer and talent.

Arnie was born June 14, 1942 in Vancouver, Washington and raised in Camus, Washington. Arnie was pd at KEZY from 1967–74 until he was succeeded by Mark Denis. Arnie transformed the station from an easy-listening station to “The Mighty 1190.”

A number of djs who later became prominent in L.A. – Mike Wagner, Paul Freeman, Bruce Chandler, among others – worked with Arnie to create a Top 40 station which dominated the OC airwaves. KEZY even had a following into the Los Angeles market despite the fading signal at night when the station reduced power.

Ed Schultz, July 5 (64) Ed was thought to be the Progressive Talk show answer to King of the Talkers, Rush Limbaugh. Ultimately Air America failed to dismantle or even challenge the juggernaut of "right-wing radio." Schultz had an uncanny similar presentation as Limbaugh, despite their opposite political views. Ed opened his show with “From the heart of America, the nation’s #1 Progressive voice where truth and common-sense rule.”

Ed played football at Minnesota State University/Moorhead, eventually becoming the play-by-play announcer for North Dakota State. Schultz began his media career working as a radio and television host in the Fargo market.  

From 2009 to 2015, he hosted a daytime news and opinion program on MSNBC called The Ed Show. He was a controversial presence. At MSNBC, Ed attacked Laura Ingraham once telling his listeners: "President Obama is going to be visiting Joplin, Missouri, on Sunday but you know what they're talking about, like this right-wing slut, what's her name? Laura Ingraham? Yeah, she's a talk slut."

The trade newspapers had a field day covering Schultz’ colorful language on his syndicated radio show. One time he tore into a caller, telling him to “get the fuck out of here” before fretting over whether the radio producers had managed to hit the delay censor button. 

John Lyle Campbell, July 10 (63)  John worked at KHTZ (K-HITS) from 1983-86. “John loved radio!” according to his sister, Charlotte. He got his initial on-air experience on the campus station while attending Hudson Valley. In Albany, he worked at WHRL, WABY, and WSNY.

In 1975, the lure of Hollywood drew him to Southern California. His booming voice enabled him to find work in LA at KRLA, KHTZ and KSRF, KWNK-Simi Valley and in San Bernardino at KMEN. He was a proud member of SAG for many years and appeared in many movies, most notably Absolute PowerLogan’s Run and The Rock. And he worked on many tv shows.

For the last 14 years of his life, John was employed at the law office of Richard M. Lester.

“John had a heart of gold. He was quirky, opinionated, interesting, passionate and lovable, always smiling or grinning. He was a ‘walking encyclopedia’ with regard to old movies and old tv shows especially. Give him a title, he knew the actors, the director and the year it came out,” his sister continued. “John leaves behind many desolate co-workers, good friends close and afar and a family that never got to say goodbye.”

Dave Zorn, July 30 (73) Dave was a news anchor/reporter and a booming baritone afternoon drive voice at KNX for 25 years, until his retirement in 2006.

Dave majored in broadcasting in college and began his commercial broadcasting career in 1969. “I can't remember a time in my life that I didn't want to be on the radio, but I really got the 'bug' one rainy summer afternoon in Cleveland in the late ‘50s when I 'played radio' with a neighborhood electronic genius who built a radio station in his basement. We tape recorded our pretend rock 'n roll radio show with ‘your boy D.Z. on K-R-A-P’ and played it through a miniature transmitter my engineer friend built. What a thrill, I was on the radio! 

Dave was in Vietnam for two years, where he served as a corporal in the U.S. Marine Corps. He married his college sweetheart, Carolynn Bauer. Dave won 7 Golden Mikes, including three consecutive Best Newscast awards. From the L.A. Press Club he received 12 first-place awards in various categories, including best newscast.

"I've had a wonderful career, 37 years in commercial radio, nearly 25 of them at KNX. I've enjoyed NEARLY every minute of it. I found something to do in life that I was pretty good at, made a pretty good living, worked with some of the best broadcast journalists and best people you could ever meet up with, interviewed fascinating people, got to do things that most people only dream of doing, and had a few laughs along the way. I walk away from my radio career with no regrets. I accomplished everything I set out to do, and MORE. It was a damn good run and now it's time to spend more time with my family."


Johnny Morris, September 1 (70) The godfather of soul radio in California (KGFJ / KACE / KJLH Los Angeles; KSOL / KDIA in the Bay Area) knew what he wanted to be when he grew up – a radio broadcaster. The curious youngster didn’t want to become an adult before pursuing his dream. At 12, he had built his first transmitter in his grandmother’s garage and constructed a small radio studio. “I loved the early rock and roll music of Fats Domino and Chuck Berry. There’s nothing like it.” While in high school, he started his radio career as the all-night personality at KSOL-Oakland/San Francisco, using the moniker Ronnie Dark. He was there at the same time Sly Stone was at the station. 

After nearly two decades in the San Francisco and Oakland communities, Johnny packed up to head down south to join Los Angeles r&b stations KGFJ-AM and KUTE/fm, when the stations were located on 1989 Riverside Drive. The lineup on the legendary station included Big Jim Woods, Magnificent Montague, Tyrone “Boogie” Nelson, Levi Booker, and Alvin John Waples. When the stations parted ways in 1985, Johnny remained with KGFJ, again taking on multiple duties as an on-air personality, program director, and chief engineer.  

Mike Parker, November 4 (75) In 1967, Mike joined KBBQ as a newscaster and worked alongside Dick Spangler and Andy West. In 1969, he moved to KFI where he worked as a street reporter, anchor, then news director from 1973-77. “So much happened at KFI and I worked with so many great people, my head reels from the great memories. In the newsroom were such greats as Mark Coogan, Bob Kerr, Larry ChattertonBill JenkinsBill BrowningEleanor Green and Vern Williams. I’m sure I’ve left somebody out but it was a fantastic news operation until Cox Broadcasting bought the place and started cutting costs. I also got to work alongside some legendary radio personalities as a newscaster. There were Lohman & Barkley, Dave HullAl “Jazzbeaux” CollinsHilly Rose, even Dave Garroway and Robert Q. Lewis. Now that was a FULL SERVICE radio station.”

In the late 1970s, Mike moved to tv at CBS station KNXT/Channel 2 as both a reporter and anchor. He said “working in L.A. in the ’70s was like covering news for the Sodom and Gomorrah bureau.”

Mike covered numerous forest fires as well as the Hillside Strangler case.

He moved in 1980 to work at the CBS station in Chicago, WBBM/tv. He became one of the station’s best known reporters over his three-and-a-half decades.

Dave Roberts, November 24 (70) Dave was an Orange County jock at KEZY and KWIZ in the mid-1970s.

Born Dave Kelliher on November 1, 1948, he held a doctorate in research from the University of Oregon. He worked at KYNO-Fresno, KMEN-San Bernardino and KPOI-Honolulu. He started his career in 1966 at KDUO, and did fill-in work at KFXM-San Bernardino. A year later he joined KREO-Indio, then on to KPOI-Honolulu. In 1980 he was at KYA-San Francisco as assistant pd, research director and afternoon drive.

In 1981 he was appointed pd at KRQR-San Francisco before he was named vp/director of programming for the RKO Radio Network in 1983. In the mid-1980s he was host of RKO’s “The Hot Ones” and was a four-time fill-in host for American Top 40.

In 1985, he joined the CBS/FM Group as vp/director of programming. Dave owned a consulting company in Austin. During part of his radio journey, Dave worked as David B. Daniels.

Ed Crook, November 26 (85) During the 50s and 60s, Ed was a veteran of KWKW, KDWC, KGRB, and KWOW. He worked on-air as Dave Gilmore. He also spent time at KPRO-Riverside. 

"He went to take a nap on Thanksgiving Day and he never woke up," according to friend Bill Kingman. "He was the nicest guy on our planet and a proud Eagle Scout.

Ed moved to Lake Tahoe in 1974 and founded KRLT/fm. He was general manager of KPTL/KKBC Carson City/Reno in the early 1980s, followed by a stint as gm at KROI AM&FM. Ed was heard at KTHO-Lake Tahoe since 2001 and was heard hourly nights and weekends announcing the local weather forecast.

Scott St. James, December 17 (75) A versatile member of the Southern California radio and tv sportsworld, Scott died of Alzheimer's Disease. Following radio stops in San Jose, Hartford, and St. Louis where he lived by the mantra, ‘Go Big or Go Home.’ When Scott showed up in Los Angeles, you definitely took notice.

He arrived in 1979 and joined Gene Autry’s “Station of the Stars,” 710/KMPC. Scott became an important member of the Robert W. Morgan “Good Morgan Team.” Scott also formed a friendship with three-time World Heavyweight Champion Muhammed Ali during this time. It was a friendship that endured the rest of their lives.

Scott also produced a nine-hour star-studded special on Gene Autry. The show covered the career of the Singing Cowboy from his three decades as a performer in radio, tv and film, to his ownership of both radio and tv stations, as well as his beloved California Angels baseball team.

Scott’s later on-air jobs in L.A. included working with KIIS/fm’s Rick Dees, “Arrow 93’s” Uncle Joe Benson and Charlie Tuna. Once nicked-named ‘The Jammer with the Hammer,’ St. James picked up multiple Golden Mike and Mark Twain awards for commentary writing.

In the ‘80s, Scott was on-camera sports director at KHJ/Channel 9. During this time, Scott regularly hosted the LA Police Department’s celebrity golf tournament.

Radio and tv wasn’t enough for this talent. He caught the acting bug and made his first appearance on the big screen with a role in Heart of a Champion: The Mancini Story, exec produced by Sylvester Stallone. He appeared in dozens of motion pictures. His tv acting work included Dallas, ER, The A-Team, Murder She Wrote, The Young & the Restless, Everybody Loves Raymond, with many appearances on Jimmy Kimmel Live. His national tv commercial credits include American Express, Pepsi, DirecTV and the Honda Motor Company.

In 2004, he briefly returned to radio and did a talk show on KTRS-St. Louis. When he returned to the Southland, he was heard on CRN Digital Talk Radio with Mike Horn. Scott was an incredible story teller.


Ron Pesha, December 26 (84) Born and raised in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Ron was the consummate broadcast engineer and technician who engineered, repaired, and built radio & tv stations from Hawaii to New York - including Honolulu, Los Angeles, San Jose, Fresno, and Midwest - from the 1950s into the 1980s. One of his proudest achievements was constructing [including home-building the control room audio mixing console] and then signing-on the new KFOA (FM) Honolulu in the 1960s. 

In Los Angeles, Ron worked for Saul Levine at KBCA. Ultimately, Ron became the professor of broadcasting at Adirondack Community College in Glens Falls, New York, for nearly twenty years which included founding their student-operated fm station WGFR. Ron contributed to many technical journals, and later while retired in Lubec, Maine [(the eastern-most tip of the United States], he authored several history books while being active in the local historical society as well as aiding the preservation and operation of Lubec's famous West Quoddy Head Lighthouse. Ron Pesha was 84." -
Bill Kingman

-30-


Email Saturday, 1.5.2019

** Fore For Super Dave

“Sad to hear on the passing of Super Dave Osborne. He played in several of the Mark & Brian Golf events. Not only was he very generous with his time, but he was a fan favorite never turning down a request from his fans. One funny story: We were going to give away a new LEXUS with the proceeds going to charity. When one of the golfers won the car, Dave comes up on the stage, grabs the mic and tells the winner to give it back to the charity! The place went crazy! Dave RIP.” – Bob Koontz

** Sports Nut Dies

“I was saddened to read about the passing of Bob Einstein. I had the pleasure of working with him when I was the vp/general manager of KLAC. We had a unique show called ‘Sports Nuts’ hosted by Gabe Kaplan. It was a comedy show with guests from the sports world, entertainment and comedy. The show featured stories related to sports with comedy as a central theme.

When Gabe was off [every Thursday] he had a guest host. Super Dave Osborne (Bob Einstein) often filled that position and he was a tremendous hit. He was so good that I offered him an opportunity to be the morning man with his own show. He was flattered and interested, but his schedule would not allow it.

Bob was one of the funniest and brightest men I have ever met. I first met Bob when as a newbie in radio, I formed a radio softball team which played in an advertising league for many years. Bob played on another team, and I remember that he was one of the best players in the league, very strong with lots of home run pop. He was a great guy and came from a remarkable family with brothers, Albert Brooks and Cliff Einstein, creative genius and President of Daily & Associates. He will be sorely missed.” – Norm Epstein
** Annoying Commercials

“In ALL the years that the moronic Morongo, Mike Diamond, and Sit and Sleep ads have been airing, has there ever been ONE that was funny and entertaining?? Especially the dopey Morongo Casino ad intro, with a befuddled announcer slightly off mic, as if he didn’t know his mic was on. Not once has his ‘joke’ been funny. Is that the point? That he’s a dork who bombs every time, like Charlie Brown kicking the football?

C’mon, Morongo! With all the money you take in, can’t you hire some good writers? Mike Diamond uses an agency in Texas [you can hear their slight twang] that does stuff in-house with mediocre actors.  Arrrrg.” – Andrew Schermerhorn

** KABC Panacea

“I made a New Year’s resolution for KABC but, unfortunately, I have no power to put it into effect. If I was running the station, I would change the format to MOR and Adult Contemporary hits of the 1950s through the 1980s: Johnny Mathis, Frank Sinatra, Barbra Streisand, Barry Manilow, Pat Boone, Al Martino, Jack Jones, Tony Bennett, Herb Alpert, Andy Williams, Anne Murray, Nat ‘King’ Cole, the Carpenters, the Lettermen et al. 

Call the station ‘America's Best Crooners, ABC 79’ or ‘America’s Biggest Classics, ABC 790.’ Instead of playing hundreds of versions of standards, ABC 790 would play only songs that were chart hits. With no competition on AM or FM, such a format would likely get much higher ratings than the talk and brokered programming.” – Steve Thompson

New Day for KABC 

(January 4, 2019) KABC is kicking off the New Year with a number of shift changes and two new additions to its on-air lineup. Moving to morning drive will be John Phillips and Jillian Barberie (an update on Jillian’s medical challenges follows this story). They had been in the afternoons.

Following John and Jillian from 10 a.m. to noon is Larry O’Connor. He began his radio career on Internet radio in January 2010 on BlogTalkRadio. A year later Larry began filling in for many terrestrial radio shows and stations including nationally syndicated shows like Dennis Miller and Hugh Hewitt. Born in Detroit, he attended high school in Corona Del Mar.

He's written for Andrew Breitbart's Big Hollywood site under the pseudonym Stage Right.

Dr. Drew Pinsky will continue in the noon – 3 p.m., but with Leeann Tweeden, who had been doing mornings with Doug McIntyre. She replaces Lauren Sivan.

In afternoon drive, the syndicated The Ben Shapiro Show, most recently part of the morning threesome at 870 KRLA The Answer.

Peter Tilden returns to his early evening slot from 6 p.m. -9 p.m.

Shapiro said: “I grew up listening to 790, and it's an honor and a pleasure to be coming to its hallowed airwaves. I can't wait to bring my brand of hard-hitting, pull-no-punches, information-first talk to the best station in my hometown!"
KABC Talker Jillian Barberie has been very open about her recent challenges with cancer. At the start of the New Year, she offered this tweet: “Hello 2019. Goodbye cancer. Goodbye hair. Hello health. I’m ready. I’m a warrior. #FuckCancer.” She had a double mastectomy late last year,  which will be followed up this year with chemo and radiation therapy. Earlier during the holidays, she wrote: “Sometimes I think I was a good tv host & I was shit canned. I was a good wife & got divorced. Twice. My birth mom died in my arms Christmas morning three years ago. I’m a single mom getting thru cancer. Who in the fuck did I piss off? But that would be feeling sorry for myself.” Good luck Jillian with of all your challenges.

In other news: Michael Medved, the conservative talk host known for his stance of #NeverTrump, lost his job with Salem to Trump supporter Sebastian Gorka. On New Year’s Day, Medved began hosting a daily live podcast. It will take a $5 per month fee to gain access to Medved’s commercial-free show. He joins Laura Ingraham, another Talker in the podcasting stratosphere … Didja know that Rick Dees is hosting a Dead Top 40? Check it out here … The message was short on the morning of January 1. Robert Feder, publisher of his excellent media blog in Chicago, said that he would be “taking some time off…I will be off the grid and away a few days for a family matter.” We have since learned that his wife, Janet, has died after a battle with cancer. Condolences, sir … Former KFI Talker Maria Sanchez is having fun on the Internet with a daily show here … Football fans reading Lisa Bowman’s Facebook posting must have sat up in their chair, grabbed a beer and read: “DO YOU WANT THESE? A friend of mine has two tickets for the 2019 Super Bowl, both box seats. He paid $2,500 each but he didn’t realize last year when he bought them, it was going to be on the same day as his wedding. If you are interested, he is looking for someone to take his place...It’s at St Mark Cathedral, off Alsbury St. in Burleson, TX at 3pm. The bride’s name is Nicole, she's 5’4”, about 115 lbs., good cook too. She’ll be the one in the white dress."
A Study in Satin Soul about KBCA from Elegant Magazine, published in 1965

Archives 1st Quarter 2019: Super Dave Osborne dies; Larry Van Nuys jumps into the (K)Surf

 

 

 

 


LARadio Bulletin: John Phillips and Jillian Barberie will be the new morning drive team at KABC beginning Monday!


A Genius at Comedy Dies 

(January 3, 2019) Sad to learn that Bob Einstein (he was a LARP as a sideline reporter for the one season of the L.A. Xtreme for the one season on KLSX) has died. We went to Chapman College (now University) together. He was on the basketball team and always very funny, in a dry, droll way. My roommate was also on the basketball team, so we all hung around a lot.

He went on to create the “Super Dave” character, appearing frequently on Late Night with David Letterman. He also was a two-time Emmy winner who was seen fairly regularly on HBO’s Curb Your Enthusiasm. Bob was the brother of comedian and writer Albert Brooks. Bob was part of the writing team for The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour (which he was also appeared as “Officer Judy”), Sonny and Cher and Dick Van Dyke. He was 76 and recently had been diagnosed with cancer.

The clock is ticking for all us. As Claude Hall used to say: “We come. We do. And we go.” We just have to be sure we do before we go.
In other news: Favorite LARP Wally Clark, former general manager at KIIS/fm, spent the holidays healing from his broken hip. A couple of months ago he fell on a wet bathroom floor. “Breaking a hip is a new experience,” emailed Wally. “Then they put a pin in to secure it. I still can’t put much weight on my left leg. Every day I walk a couple of times along with other exercises.” I’m sure Wally would love to hear from you. His email address is: wallywclark@yahoo.com … KFI’s Debra Mark emailed to say she is also in the Sandra Bullock pic Bird Box. Congrats! … Later this month, KLAC’s Vic the Brick Jacobs will receive the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 69th Annual Golden Mike Awards … Dave Williams, former KABC/KNX morning man, woke up New Year’s Day with 100% improvement in his eyesight. “Two two-minute laser procedures restored bright colors and contrast, wiping clean the filmy haze that impeded my ability to read fine print and soft fonts,” wrote Williams. “Absolutely amazing, with zero discomfort or side effects. I drove myself home immediately after the procedures. Miracle science!” … There has been a last minute reprieve for RockitRadio after rearrangement of costly promotion expenses, according to Lane Quigley … Jeff Serr, former production director at KKGO, is busy doing voiceover work.  “I left the production director job at Go Country 105 in October of 2014 to work with a producer in Seattle, doing voice work on various projects, which I’m still doing to this day,” emailed Jeff. “Recent ad campaigns I've voiced include Vitas Healthcare, Trane Heating, and the film documentary Understand A.D.” … Dawn Kamber celebrates 30 years today working for Saddleback College’s KSBR radio. “I know I’ve been very fortunate to be able to perform broadcasting duties at one place for this length of time,” Dawn wrote. “I don’t take any day for granted. I appreciate all the wonderful people I’ve worked with over the years and will do so in the future.” ... Patrick Breen noted that KABC still lists Doug McIntyre in the Morning. He's been gone for three weeks. "How unprofessional," noted Breen ... They are not the only ones, Patrick. KOST still has a banner on their website about listening to your favorite holiday music NOW.  

From David Grudt's private collection of LA Times radio ads. This one from December 31, 1957


Larry Van Nuys Goes Full Circle and Jumps in the (K)Surf

(January 2, 2019) “Great Oldies are back on ‘L.A. Oldies’” is the station’s slogan. Now, K-Surf (KSUR) is bringing a familiar voice back to L.A. radio, as veteran personality Larry Van Nuys prepares to helm mornings starting Monday.

When interviewed back in 2009, Larry told LARadio.com he was busy as a voice actor, yet “missed the interaction with friends and co-workers,” which prompted his return to radio via “Arrow 93” (KCBS/fm) and all-News KNX. He concluded his work as a news anchor at KSFO-San Francisco about a year ago, which could have been his last appearance on the airwaves. But once again, the draw back to radio offered strong appeal.

Among other reasons, it’s a return to his role of playing music. “I’ve actually been a jock longer than I’ve been a news anchor,” said Larry, reflecting on his last two radio jobs at KSFO and KNX. “The transition (back to music) should be a natural one.” Plus the opportunity to work with Saul Levine – for a second time – is “something fitting the order of the cosmos.”

“What makes this opportunity especially significant for me is that Mr. Levine was the man who helped me turn my dreams into reality offering me my first job in radio,” said Larry. “Saul is intelligent…a beautiful man with a unique approach” of bringing back tunes missing from the local airwaves.

For his part, Levine said “I am gratified that Larry is returning after fifty years. Larry rejoins the long list of major celebrities who have hosted shows on 1260AM (previously KGIL) and KKGO 105.1FM including Gary Owens, Wink Martindale, Chuck Southcott, Chuck Niles, Jim Gosa, Tom Dixon, Johnny Magnus, Nancy Sinatra, Hal Fishman, Florence HendersonStephanie Edwards, Mel Torme, and many others.”
Born in Providence, Rhode Island, Larry grew up in Southern California, graduating from Los Angeles High School. He grew up with a radio by his side, listening to serial dramas, Chuck Blore’s KFWB “Color Radio 98,” and “Boss Radio” KHJ.

In an earlier interview, Larry recalled “while the other kids were playing baseball, I was playing dj using a wooden spoon for my microphone. I actually ripped off all the labels of my mother’s canned food and pretended they were earphones. For months, she never knew what she was opening for dinner … she still kids me about that.” Eventually Larry’s parents purchased him a Webcor tape recorder, “and I was off to the races.” Larry finally made it on the air courtesy of Levine’s all-jazz KBCA.

Though he spent time at KFI, KMPC and KABC, Larry may be best remembered as the midday host at KGIL-San Fernando, a directional 5,000 watt local station which nonetheless attracted listeners from throughout Southern California. Said Larry: “I sat in a broadcast trailer on the weekends doing remotes. I think I opened every Taco Bell in the Valley. One remote that still makes me smile is when I MC’d the opening of a new traffic light in Encino. But I loved it!”

K-Surf is banking on Larry’s ability to connect with local listeners. “There’s much room for a distinctive approach for this music,” he said. Having hosted KTLA/tv’s Help Thy Neighbor, being the voice of the 1980’s tv hit The Love Boat, and the aforementioned stops across the L.A. radio dial seemingly would be enough to conclude a successful career. Yet the opportunity to return to the local radio dial is hard to pass up. “Saul has a very cool idea here (with K-Surf). The staff wants to make it as best as it can be. They’re a beautiful group, an amazing group of broadcast professional. I hope to be able to bring something and in some small way contribute to the station,” said Larry. (Story written by LARadio senior correspondent, Alan Oda)

In other news: Dick Clark’s New Year’s Rockin’ Eve with Ryan Seacrest 2019 was the top rated New Year’s Eve telecast. The show featured the ball dropping in New York’s Times Square, even though  the rating was down from last year. Carson Daly was back to host NBC’s New Year’s Eve. Social media response was less than flattering, including adjectives such as “trainwreck” and “a complete disaster.” Deadline.com noted “the special…raised some eyebrows for not showing the ball drop in Time Square.” In third place was Fox TV’s Fox New Year’s Eve with Steve Harvey … KRLA/870 launched America First with Dr. Sebastian Gorka yesterday.  His new show airs on 340 affiliate stations, including AM 870 The Answer (KRLA) from noon to three. Gorka, who is the author of two books Why We Fight and also Defeating Jihad was on the Trump White House team in 2017. His parents escaped the communist take-over of Hungary in 1956 … Former B-100 (KIBB 100.3) dj and superstar Chaka Khan got trashed on Twitter for her performance at the beginning of the Rose Parade. One Tweet: “It sounded like Chaka Khan was singing in a canyon. Not a good start to the parade.” … Nielsen had to reissue the December ’18 PPM ratings because there was a 4th week glitch. The Top 10 stations did not alter positions except for KLOS, which fell out of the Top 10 … Didja know that Frank Mottek was in  Bird Box? If you were one of the 45 million who viewed Sandra Bullock in Netflix's Bird Box over the holidays, whotta’ delight to see Frank Mottek … Anyone know how to reach Steve Fischler, son of Alan Fischler?

Sioux-z Jessup: "Island of Misfit Toys allows us to imgine that maybe our flaws are actually uniqueness misunderstood"

 

 


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