Monday, April 6, 2009

Bay area radio stations: Do you hate your listeners?

I'm not a huge radio listener, but I do love me a good morning show. Back when I belonged to the world of the employed commuter, there were plenty of excellent choices to satisfy any morning show need. The problem now is that all the bay area radio stations seem to be in the business of taking all the good shit off the air. Stick with me, here:

Exhibit A: The former Sarah and No Name show on 97.3 KLLC FM (Alice Radio). I think Sarah can be SO boring and totally full of herself at times, but man, No Name was an amped-up loon who made mornings fun. Sarah was (and still is) a stick in the mud, but No Name's antics along with producer Matty's random two cents balanced her lameness out. The result: an unpredictable good time with plenty of juvenile laughs. Always. But then, for some mysterious reason, Matty and No Name were fired very unexpectedly. I'm not sure that the official reason was ever released, but I heard that it had something to do with No Name and Matty "not fitting in with the target demographic of 19-25 year old females". The show sucks now. I hardly tune into 97.3 at all anymore in protest of their firing.

Exhibit B: A long time bay area institution, Dave Morey, left 104.5 KFOG FM's morning show back in December of 2008. Granted, his departure was voluntary after close to 30 years with the station. But his voice...his iconic one can take the place of this San Francisco radio staple. When the silliness of Sarah and No Name got to be a little much (which it frequently did), I looked to Morey and company for level-headed, respectful, adult conversation and opinions on any number of topics. I cried during his last show. I literally grew up in the bay area listening to his show and he is greatly missed.

Exhibit C: After No Name's dismissal from Alice, I struggled to find a replacement show. I tried the Dog House on 94.9 (which is now also gone!). I turned the dial to 106.1 and Chuy Gomez. This one almost worked, but not quite. Only when I tuned in to The Woody Show on Live 105 did I find something worth listening to. Host Woody and his friends Tony and Ravey were irreverant yet intelligent and instantly became my new fave morning show. Along with Greg Gory and the White Menace, Woody and friends were some of the funniest folks I'd ever heard on the radio. Ravey loved hockey and even though she roots for Pittsburgh, I still wanted to have a beer and watch a game with her. The White Menace and I became friends on Facebook. I felt like I'd finally found the perfect balance of music, talk, and shenanigans. All was well.

Then, on April Fool's Day, I heard that Woody, Tony and Ravey were fired, apparently for playing a clip of an unreleased Green Day song. Just as a reminder to the douchebags that made the call here, NO ONE cares about Green Day in 2009. Playing the song didn't create NEARLY the uproar that firing the people who played it did. Along with a TON of their former listeners, I'm up in arms about this. So unfair. Apparently, they are planning an "I quit this bitch" going away party for May 1st. I'm gonna do my best to make it out and show some support for one of the last great radio shows in the bay area.

Now, the commuters of the bay area have very few decent morning choices left. Time to plug in the iPod or tune into your favorite internet radio channel, like I will be doing from here on out. Live 105 had one good thing going for it: The Woody Show. Now that they're gone, I doubt I'll tune in anymore. I can listen to Death Cab for Cutie, old Red Hot Chili Peppers and Sublime on repeat on my own, thanks. Sheesh. WTF?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I too was sad when Dave Morey left KFOG, but his replacement 'Webster' is doing a great job. The morning show is not exactly the same of course, but it has the same intelligent, adult feel to it - you should give it another try.