Saturday, February 19, 2022

February 20 Radio History

➦In 1906..Radio/TV Actor Gale Gordon was born.

(Real Name  Charles Thomas Aldrich, Jr., died from lung cancer June 30, 1995) is best remembered as Lucille Ball's longtime television foil—and particularly as cantankerously combustible, tightfisted bank executive Theodore J. Mooney, on Ball's second television situation comedy.

Gale Gordon
Gordon's first big radio break came via the recurring roles of "Mayor La Trivia" and "Foggy Williams" on Fibber McGee and Molly, before playing Rumson Bullard on the show's successful spinoff, The Great Gildersleeve.

Gordon and his character of Mayor La Trivia briefly left the show in December 1942 when Gordon enlisted in World War II and the storyline followed. He was the first actor to play the role of Flash Gordon, in the 1935 radio serial The Amazing Interplanetary Adventures of Flash Gordon. He also played Dr. Stevens in Glorious One.

In 1950, Gordon played John Granby in the radio series Granby's Green Acres, which became the basis for the 1960s television series Green Acres. Gordon went on to create the role of pompous principal Osgood Conklin on Our Miss Brooks, carrying the role to television when the show moved there in 1952. In the interim, Gordon turned up as Rudolph Atterbury on My Favorite Husband, which starred Lucille Ball in a precursor to I Love Lucy.

Jim Jewell
➦In 1906...James Jewell was born. He was a radio actor, producer and director at radio station WXYZ, Detroit, Michigan. (Died from a heart attack August 5, 1975 at age 69)

Jewell first got into radio in 1927. with a background of summer stock, vaudeville, burlesque, and even touring with a troupe of marionettes. In June 1932, George Trendle, the owner of radio station WXYZ Detroit, decided to drop network affiliation and produce his own radio programs. Jewell was hired as the dramatic director for the radio station. He supplied the actors from his own repertory company, the "Jewell Players".

Jewell was part of the station staff that worked out the original concepts for The Lone Ranger. Jewell is also credited for selecting The William Tell Overture as the theme music for the series. "Ke-mo sah-bee", Tonto's greeting to the masked Ranger, was derived from the name of a boys' camp owned by Jewell's father-in-law Charles W. Yeager. Camp Kee-Mo-Sah-Bee operated from 1911 until 1941 on Mullet Lake south of Mackinac, Michigan. After the radio show became popular, Yeager held "Lone Ranger Camps" at his camp.

Jewell produced, directed and occasionally wrote many of the early episodes for The Lone Ranger and The Green Hornet. He was the director for both series from their beginning up until 1938.

Jewell left WXYZ in 1938, and moved to Chicago and worked as a director-producer at WBBM (AM), the CBS radio affiliate in Chicago.

He directed Jack Armstrong, the All-American Boy beginning in 1938 until the series ended in 1951. From 1951-1955, Jewell was the producer/director of The Silver Eagle, a mountie adventure which ran on ABC and starred Jim Ameche, the brother of movie star Don Ameche.

As the era of radio dramatic series came to an end, attempted to bring The Silver Eagle to television.

➦In 1914...John Charles Patrick Croghan Daly was born (Died February 24, 1991). Known as John Daly, he was a radio and television personality, CBS News broadcast journalist, ABC News executive and TV anchor and a game show host, best known as the host and moderator of the CBS television panel show What's My Line?

Daly began his broadcasting career as a reporter for NBC Radio, and then for WJSV (now WTOP), the local CBS Radio Network affiliate in Washington, D.C., serving as CBS' White House correspondent. He appears on the famous "One Day in Radio" tapes of September 21, 1939, in which WJSV preserved its entire broadcast day for posterity.

Through covering the Roosevelt White House, Daly became known to the national CBS audience as the network announcer for many of the President's speeches. In late 1941, Daly transferred to New York City, where he became anchor of The World Today. During World War II, he covered the news from London as well as the North African and Italian fronts.  Daly was a war correspondent in 1943 in Italy during Gen. George S. Patton's infamous "slapping incidents". After the war, he was a lead reporter on CBS Radio's news/entertainment program CBS Is There (later known on TV as You Are There), which recreated the great events of history as if CBS correspondents were on the scene.

As a reporter for the CBS radio network, Daly was the voice of two historic announcements. He was the first national correspondent to deliver the news of the attack on Pearl Harbor on Sunday, December 7, 1941, and he was also the first to relay the wire service report of the death of President Franklin D. Roosevelt on April 12, 1945, interrupting the program Wilderness Road to deliver the news. Transcriptions of those bulletins have been preserved on historical record album retrospectives and radio and television documentaries. Among the first were the Columbia Records spoken word series I Can Hear It Now and the later CBS Television series, The Twentieth Century.

In July, 1959, along with the Associated Press writer John Scali, he reported from Moscow on the famous Kitchen Debate between USSR General Secretary Nikita Khrushchev and then U.S. Vice President Richard M. Nixon in 1959.

➦In 1922...WGY-AM, Schenectady, NY signed-on. As early as 1912, General Electric company in Schenectady began experimenting with radio transmissions, being granted a class 2-Experimental license for 2XI on August 13, 1912 by the Commerce Department.

WGY signed on on February 20, 1922 at 7:47pm at 360 meters wavelength (about 833 kHz), with Kolin Hager at the mike, or as he was known on the air, as KH. Hager signed on with the stations call letters, explaining the W is for wireless, G for General Electric, and Y, the last letter in Schenectady.

The first broadcast lasted for about one hour and consisted of live music and announcements of song titles and other information. The early broadcasts originated from building 36 at the General Electric Plant in Schenectady. The original transmitter produced an antenna power of 1,500 watts into a T top wire antenna, located about 1/2 mile away, also at the GE plant.

WGY led the way in radio drama. In 1922 Edward H. Smith, director of a community-theater group called the Masque in nearby Troy, suggested weekly forty-minute adaptations of plays to WGY station manager Kolin Hager. Hager took him up on it and the troupe performed on the weekly WGY Players, radio’s first dramatic series.

Kolin Hager
During their initial broadcast—of Eugene Walter’s The Wolf on August 3, 1922—Smith became the electronic media’s first Foley artist when he slapped a couple of two-by-fours together to simulate the slamming of a door, and radio sound effects were born. While the invisible audience could not see that the actors wore costumes and makeup—which were expected to enhance performance but didn’t and were soon discarded—they could hear the WGY Orchestra providing music between acts.

By May 15, 1923 the station was operating on 790 kHz with a frequency/time share agreement with RPI's WHAZ. Later, WHAZ moved to 1300 kHz allowing WGY to operate full-time on 790 kHz.

In 1924, the transmitter site was moved to its current location in the Town of Rotterdam known as South Schenectady. From this site, the station's power levels were increased first to 5,000 watts, then 10,000 watts and finally to 50,000 watts on July 18, 1925. Temporary broadcasts were carried out at the 100 KW (August 4, 1926) and 200 KW (March 9, 1930) power levels. From those broadcasts, the station received reception letters and telegrams from as far away as New Zealand. Plans were to make those power increases permanent, but were never carried out.

Amelia Earhart
WGY also used the first condenser microphone, developed by General Electric for radio studio applications, on February 7, 1923.

In 1923, WGY formed the first radio network with WJZ and WRC, however the station also broadcast programs from rival station WEAF. Later in 1925, the New York State radio network was formed with WMAK, WHAM, WFBL, and WGY. In 1926, WGY affiliated with the WEAF-based NBC Red Network, and after the split of the sister NBC Blue network into today's ABC Radio, WGY remained with NBC Radio until it folded in 1989.

To add to their laurels, six years later the Players performed an old spy melodrama titled The Queen’s Messenger in the world’s first dramatic program to be broadcast simultaneously over both radio and the new medium called television.

“Radio station WGY had cornered the market on talk and music by 1928,” the Daily Gazette recalled. “Scientists from the General Electric Co. could have winked to their audience and said, ‘You ain't seen nothing yet.’ The smart guys who developed amplifiers, transmitters and bright lights were working on that next step—sound and pictures. On Tuesday, Sept. 11, 1928, they succeeded. WGY became the first radio station in the world to televise a drama on separate radio channels.”

WGY Tower Base

In 1941, WGY changed frequency from 790 kHz to 810 kHz to comply with the North American Radio Broadcasting Agreement also known as NARBA. In 1942, during World War II, a concrete wall was built around the base of the tower to prevent saboteurs from shooting out the base insulator on the tower and taking the station off-air.

WGY was the flagship station of General Electric's broadcasting group until 1983 when it was sold to Empire Radio Partners, Inc. General Electric also owned pioneering sister stations in television (WRGB-TV, signed on as WGY-TV in 1928) and FM radio (W2XOY, later WGFM, then WGY-FM, and today WRVE, signed on 1940).

As the golden age of radio ended, WGY evolved into a full service middle of the road format, slowly evolving as programming tastes changed. The station changed from full service to news/talk on Memorial Day Weekend, 1994.

Dame Media, Inc acquired WGY and WGY-FM the during proceedings in the Philadelphia bankruptcy court, late 1993. Dame moved the studios to One Washington Square at the end of Washington Avenue Extension, in the west end of Albany, New York late 1994, where they remained until 2005.

In 1999, Dame Media sold its entire radio group to Clear Channel (now iHeartMedia), whose ownership remains to this day. Clear Channel combined all of its radio station studio operations into the former CHP (Community Health Plan) building on Route 7 (Troy-Schenectady Road) in Latham August, 2005.

On September 20, 2010, WGY began simulcasting its programming on 103.1 FM (the former WHRL, which took the calls WGY-FM, previously on 99.5 FM). WGY 103.1 FM broadcasts at 5,600 watts power.

➦In 1949...future teen singing idol, 8-year old Ricky Nelson, and his older brother David began playing themselves on their parents’ radio show, “The Adventures of Ozzie & Harriet.” Until now Ricky had been played by child actor Henry Blair, while David was played by Tommy Bernard.

In 1952, the Nelsons tested the waters for a television series with the theatrically released film Here Come the Nelsons. The film was a hit, and Ozzie was convinced the family could make the transition from radio's airwaves to television's small screen. On October 3, 1952, The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet made its television debut and was broadcast in first run until September 3, 1966, to become one of the longest-running sitcoms in television history.

➦In 1971...NORAD at Cheyenne Mountain in Colorado was ready to broadcast a required weekly test of the Emergency Broadcast System.

However, AT&T reported that the United States Air Force accidentally used the wrong tape for the test, and initiated an Emergency Action Notification, normally issued by the Office of Civil Defense or the President. This prompted all stations in the Fort Wayne, Indiana, area by order of the FCC to operate under emergency procedures and feed the broadcast from WOWO through their radios.

Bob Sievers was at the microphone at WOWO at the time. Sievers and everyone at the studio had no idea what was going on.

Mistake wasn't resolved for 30 minutes.

Walter Winchell

➦In 1972..Early radio broadcaster and syndicated newspaper columnist Walter Winchell died of prostate cancer at the age of 74 in Los Angeles.  His weekly broadcasts in the 30’s, 40’s & 50’s began: “Hello Mr. & Mrs. North America & all the ships at sea, let’s go to press.”  A later generation would only know him as narrator on the TV series The Untouchables.  He is buried at Greenwood/Memory Lawn Mortuary & Cemetery in Phoenix.

Rosemary DeCamp

➦In 2001...Radio, TV, Film Actress actress Rosemary De Camp succumbed to pneumonia at age 90.  She shined in many roles on bigtime radio, including the long running part of nurse Judy Price on CBS’ Dr. Christian. On TV she was Peg Riley on Life of Riley, and also had feature roles on The Bob Cummings Show & That Girl.

➦In 2003...99 people were killed when fire destroyed the nightclub The Station in West Warwick RI. The fire started with sparks from a pyrotechnic display being used by the band Great White. Among those who died in the fire were Great White's lead guitarist, Ty Longley, and the show's emcee, WHJY 94.1 FM Providence personality Mike "The Doctor" Gonsalves.

➦In 2006...Sportscaster Curtis Edward Gowdy (Born July 31, 1919) died of leukemia at age 86 in Palm Beach, Fla., at age 86, after a long battle with leukemia. He’d been part of the national broadcast of 13 World Series, 16 baseball All-Star Games, 9 Super Bowls, 14 Rose Bowls, 8 Olympic Games and 24 NCAA Final Fours. He also hosted ABC-TV’s long-running outdoors show The American Sportsman. He was well known as the longtime "voice" of the Boston Red Sox and for his coverage of many nationally televised sporting events, primarily for NBC Sports and ABC Sports in the 1960s and 1970s.

He had a knack for broadcasting, and, in 1942, worked at the small KFBC radio station and at the Cheyenne, Wyoming Eagle newspaper as a sportswriter (and later sports editor). After several years in Cheyenne, he accepted an offer from CBS's KOMA radio in Oklahoma City in 1946. He was hired primarily to broadcast Oklahoma college football (then coached by new-hire Bud Wilkinson) and Oklahoma State college basketball games (then coached by Hank Iba).

Curt Gowdy
Gowdy's distinctive play-by-play style earned him a national audition. Gowdy began his Major League Baseball broadcasting career working as the No. 2 announcer to Mel Allen for New York Yankees games on radio and television in 1949–50. There, he succeeded Russ Hodges, who departed to become the New York Giants.

In April 1951 at the age of 31, Gowdy began his tenure as the lead announcer for the Red Sox. For the next 15 years, he called the exploits of generally mediocre Red Sox teams on WHDH radio and on three Boston TV stations: WBZ-TV, WHDH-TV, and WNAC-TV (WBZ and WNAC split the Red Sox TV schedule from 1948 through 1955; WBZ alone carried the Red Sox from 1955 through 1957; and WHDH took over in 1958). During that time, Gowdy partnered with two future baseball broadcasting legends: Bob Murphy and Ned Martin. Chronic back pain caused Gowdy to miss the entire 1957 season. He also did nightly sports reports on WHDH radio when his schedule permitted.

He left WHDH after the 1965 season for NBC Sports, where for the next ten years he called the national baseball telecasts of the Saturday afternoon Game of the Week and Monday Night Baseball during the regular season (and the All-Star Game in July), and the postseason playoffs and World Series in October.

Danny Holiday
➦In 2012...Longtime Seattle radio personality known as Danny Holiday, a so-called “walking encyclopedia of rock & roll,” died following a long illness at age 68.

He spent decades spinning top-40 hits and oldies on Seattle stations KOL, KZOK and KBSG. In retirement, he brought his Rock ‘N’ Roll Time Machine to community radio, hosting the weekly show on Everett’s KSER (90.7 FM).

Holiday was inducted into NorthWest Music Hall of Fame in 1990.

In 2014…Former NBC News correspondent Garrick Utley died at age 74.   His parents, Frayn and Clifton Utley, were correspondents for NBC radio in the mid-20th century, based in Chicago. When he passed he professor of broadcasting and journalism at the State University of New York at Oswego, NY. 

Buffy Sainte-Marie is 81


  • Singer-songwriter Buffy Sainte-Marie is 81. 
  • Actor Brenda Blethyn (“Atonement,” ″Pride and Prejudice”) is 76. 
  • Actor Sandy Duncan is 76. 
  • Actor Peter Strauss is 75. 
  • Guitarist Billy Zoom of X is 74. 
  • Country singer Kathie Baillie of Baillie and the Boys is 71. 
  • Actor John Voldstad (“Newhart”) is 71. 
  • Actor Anthony Head (“Buffy the Vampire Slayer”) is 68. 
  • Actor James Wilby (“Gosford Park”) is 64. 
  • Bassist Sebastian Steinberg (Soul Coughing) is 63. 
  • Actor Joel Hodgson (“Mystery Science Theater 3000″) is 62. 
  • Singer Ian Brown of Stone Roses is 59. 
  • Rihanna is 34
    Actor French Stewart (“Mom,” “Third Rock from the Sun”) is 58. 
  • Model Cindy Crawford is 56. 
  • Actor Andrew Shue (“Melrose Place”) is 55. 
  • Actor Lili Taylor is 55. 
  • Singer Brian Littrell of the Backstreet Boys is 47. 
  • Actor Lauren Ambrose (“Six Feet Under”) is 44. 
  • Actor Jay Hernandez (“Friday Night Lights,” ″Crazy/Beautiful”) is 44. 
  • Actor Chelsea Peretti (“Brooklyn Nine-Nine”) is 44. 
  • Guitarist Coy Bowles of Zac Brown Band is 43. 
  • Actor Michael Zegen (“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel,” ″Boardwalk Empire”) is 43. 
  • Actor Majandra Delfino (“Roswell”) is 41. 
  • Actor Jocko Sims (“New Amsterdam”) is 41. 
  • Musician and “A Prairie Home Companion” host Chris Thile is 41. 
  • Actor-singer Jessie Mueller is 39. 
  • Comedian Trevor Noah (“The Daily Show”) is 38. 
  • Actor Miles Teller (“Fantastic Four”) is 35. 
  • Singer Rihanna is 34. 
  • Actor Jack Falahee (“How to Get Away With Murder”) is 33.

Report: Gollust Made 'Misleading' Remarks To CNN

Zucker, Gollust, Cuomo

Allison Gollust resigned as CNN’s communications and marketing chief after the network’s parent determined she misled investigators about her relationship with former President Jeff Zucker and violated CNN’s news standards, according to The Wall Street Journal citing people familiar with the matter.

Gollust’s resignation came amid an investigation that originally focused on former prime-time anchor Chris Cuomo’s efforts to help his brother, former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, respond to accusations of sexual misconduct. The investigation eventually ensnared three of CNN’s biggest players: network president Mr. Zucker, Chris Cuomo and Ms. Gollust.

Shortly after Zucker announced his resignation on Feb. 2, citing his failure to disclose a consensual office romance, Ms. Gollust released a statement that her relationship with Mr. Zucker “changed during Covid.”

Gollust’s decision to put a timeline on the evolution of the relationship in her Feb. 2 statement rankled some employees at WarnerMedia and CNN, who believed it had turned romantic before the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, according to some of the people familiar with the matter. Soon after Gollust issued her statement, CNN included it in its reporting. That bothered some of those WarnerMedia and CNN employees, who said Gollust’s statement misled CNN’s audience, the people said.

In the days after Mr. Zucker’s exit, amid the widening scrutiny over the timing of Gollust’s relationship with Mr. Zucker, WarnerMedia and CNN determined that her statement was misleading, the people said.

During the investigation, WarnerMedia found communications between Gollust and Andrew Cuomo, then New York governor, related to one of his appearances on the network during the early days of the Covid-19 pandemic, including topics that Mr. Cuomo would like to be asked about during an interview on CNN, which Gollust relayed to CNN producers, according to some of the people familiar with the matter. The New York Times earlier reported on the communications between Andrew Cuomo and Ms. Gollust.

WarnerMedia determined that some of the communications between Gollust and Andrew Cuomo were inappropriate and were one of multiple factors that led to the company’s decision to ask Gollust to resign, some of the people said.

Paul McCartney Announces Plans For 'Got Back' Tour

Paul McCartney plans to launch a 14-date U.S. concert tour in the Pacific Northwest this spring, marking his first series of live performances since the end of a world tour in 2019, the former Beatle announced on Friday.

The "Got Back" tour will open on April 28 in Spokane, Washington, McCartney's first show in that city, followed by back-to-back concerts at the Climate Pledge Arena in Seattle on May 2-3, according to the tour schedule posted on his official website.

The tour is slated to stop in 11 more U.S. cities over the following six weeks, wrapping at the Met Life Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey, on June 16, two days before McCartney's 80th birthday, reports Reuters.

The McCartney outing is sure to figure as a highlight of the 2022 spring-and-summer arena music scene as recording stars begin to return to live performances after a two-year hiatus forced by the COVID-19 pandemic.

McCartney is widely considered one of the greatest songwriters of the 20th century in his 1960s Beatles collaboration with the late John Lennon. He was last on the concert circuit with a 39-date world tour that concluded with a sold-out show in July 2019 at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles.

"I said at the end of the last tour that I'd see you next time. I said, I was going to get back to you. Well, I got back," the musician said in a statement announcing his latest outing, alluding to the Beatles' 1969 hit "Get Back."

The writing and recording of the song featured prominently in the "The Beatles: Get Back," a recently-released documentary film series directed by Peter Jackson that covers the making of the band's 1970 album "Let It Be."

The upcoming tour includes McCartney's first ever shows in three Southern cities - Hollywood, Florida; Knoxville, Tennessee; and Winston-Salem, North Carolina. He also will be playing in Fort Worth, Texas, for the first time since he appeared there in 1976 with Wings, and in Baltimore for the first time since a 1964 Beatles concert.

February 19 Radio History

➦In 1878...Inventor Thomas Alva Edison got patent for the phonograph.  Edison began his career as an inventor in Newark, New Jersey, with the automatic repeater and his other improved telegraphic devices, but the invention that first gained him wider notice was the phonograph in 1877. This accomplishment was so unexpected by the public at large as to appear almost magical. Edison became known as "The Wizard of Menlo Park," New Jersey.

His first phonograph recorded on tinfoil around a grooved cylinder. Despite its limited sound quality and that the recordings could be played only a few times, the phonograph made Edison a celebrity.

Joseph Henry, president of the National Academy of Sciences and one of the most renowned electrical scientists in the US, described Edison as "the most ingenious inventor in this country... or in any other". In April 1878, Edison traveled to Washington to demonstrate the phonograph before the National Academy of Sciences, Congressmen, Senators and US President Hayes. The Washington Post described Edison as a "genius" and his presentation as "a scene... that will live in history". Although Edison obtained a patent for the phonograph in 1878, he did little to develop it until Alexander Graham Bell, Chichester Bell, and Charles Tainter produced a phonograph-like device in the 1880s that used wax-coated cardboard cylinders.

"Mary had a little lamb" were the first words that Edison recorded on the phonograph and he was amazed when he heard the machine play them back to him. In 1878, Edison established the Edison Speaking Phonograph Company to sell the new machine.

Edison 1878

Edison suggested other uses for the phonograph, such as: letter writing and dictation, phonographic books for blind people, a family record (recording family members in their own voices), music boxes and toys, clocks that announce the time, and a connection with the telephone so communications could be recorded. How many of these uses have become a reality today?

Many of the uses Edison suggested for the phonograph have become a reality, but there were others he hadn't imagined. For example, the phonograph allowed soldiers to take music off to war with them. In 1917, when the U.S. became involved in World War I, the Edison Company created a special model of the phonograph for the U.S. Army. This basic machine sold for $60. Many Army units purchased these phonographs because it meant a lot to the soldiers to have music to cheer them and remind them of home. This is an audio clip of Edison himself in which he expresses his pride in the soldiers and reminds Americans of the enormous sacrifice and contribution made by the other allied nations.

➦In 1922...Comedian, Ed Wynn became the first vaudeville star to agree to a radio contract.

In the early 1930s Wynn hosted the popular radio show The Fire Chief, heard in North America on Tuesday nights, sponsored by Texaco gasoline. Like many former vaudeville performers who turned to radio in the same decade, the stage-trained Wynn insisted on playing for a live studio audience, doing each program as an actual stage show, using visual bits to augment his written material, and in his case, wearing a colorful costume with a red fireman's helmet. He usually bounced his gags off announcer/straight man Graham McNamee; Wynn's customary opening, "Tonight, Graham, the show's gonna be different," became one of the most familiar tag-lines of its time; a sample joke: "Graham, my uncle just bought a new second-handed car... he calls it Baby! I don't know, it won't go anyplace without a rattle!"

Wynn  reprised his Fire Chief radio character in two movies, Follow the Leader (1930) and The Chief (1933). Near the height of his radio fame (1933) he founded his own short-lived radio network the Amalgamated Broadcasting System, which lasted only five weeks, nearly destroying the comedian. According to radio historian Elizabeth McLeod, the failed venture left Wynn deep in debt, divorced and finally, suffering a nervous breakdown.

Wynn died June 19, 1966 in Beverly Hills, California of throat cancer, aged 79.

➦In 1935...the longtime iconic voice of the Seattle Mariners Dave Niehaus was born in Princeton Indiana. For 34 years, from the start of the franchise, he led the M’s play-by-play coverage on radio & TV. He suffered a massive heart attack and died Nov. 10, 2010 at age 75. “My oh my!!”

➦In 1981... George Harrison was ordered to pay ABKCO Music the sum of $587,000 for ‘subconscious plagiarism.’  The court found his song, “My Sweet Lord” was strikingly similar to the Chiffons early 1960s hit, “He’s So Fine.” He claimed to have used the out-of-copyright "Oh Happy Day", a Christian hymn, as his inspiration for the melody.

➦In 2007...the SIRIUS and XM Satellite Radio services announced their intention to merge.

After years of speculation (the New York Post first reported on a potential merger in January 2005), and three months of serious negotiations, the $13 billion merger between Sirius and XM was officially announces. At the time, the nation’s only two satellite radio providers reported nearly 14 million combined subscribers (with nearly 8 million belonging to XM), with neither having turned an annual profit. Sirius was valued at $5.2 billion, and XM at $3.75 billion.  Each subscription was sold for $12.95 monthly.

Sirius and XM executives felt the merger would lower programming costs by eliminating overlapping stations and duplicated marketing costs. According to their original operating licenses, the two companies were not allowed to ever own each other’s license. In proceeding with the merger, then-Sirius CEO Mel Karmazin ignored this rule, gambling that the FCC would consider other audio entertainment to be competitors and allow the merger to proceed by waiving the rule.

➦In 2016…Charlie Tuna (born Arthur W. Ferguson), the popular deejay and TV announcer whose voice was familiar to generations of L.A. listeners and viewers. died in his sleep at age 71.

At age 16, Tuna began working at his hometown's radio station, KGFW. Then, he went to work at KLEO in Wichita, Kansas for a year with the air name "Billy O'Day". He then worked for KOMA Radio in Oklahoma City in 1966, where he took over the "Charlie Tuna" pseudonym from Chuck Riley, who had used it for one show the week prior to Tuna's arrival. Tuna then moved on to WMEX in Boston for the first 9 months of 1967.

In late 1967, KHJ in Los Angeles offered Tuna the 9 to noon slot, where he debuted on Thanksgiving Day 1967. In 1972 he became one of the original DJs at KROQ AM, a new Top 40 station (formerly Country KBBQ). In 1973 be moved to KKDJ as program director and morning personality. He presided over its 1975 call-letter change to KIIS, and broadcast the first show at KIIS-FM as it began its AM/FM simulcast. He also worked at KTNQ, KHTZ (later KBZT), KRLA, KODJ (later KCBS-FM), KMPC, KIKF, and KLAC.

He worked at KBIG 104.3 where he hosted a long running morning show Charlie Tuna in the Morning which aired from 5 to 10 am. His last full-time morning show aired on September 17, 2007, when the station flipped to a non-rhythmic-based adult contemporary format, as 104.3 My FM. He returned to radio February 9, 2008 when he became the weekend personality on Los Angeles oldies station K-Earth 101. CBS on August 27, 2015 began down sizing their stations in Los Angeles, at which point Charlie moved on to expand his syndicated radio business.

Tuna served as announcer for Casey Kasem on his 1980s television program America's Top 10, and occasionally filled in for Kasem on his radio programs American Top 20 and American Top 10. He co-hosted Your Good Time Oldies Magazine from 1992 to 1995, and he produced and hosted 52 weekly episodes of Back to the 70s, which were rerun at radio stations across the country until 2008.

Tuna had a year long run in 2009 of a 5-hour classic hits daily and weekend show, syndicated through United Stations Radio Network in New York.

Lorraine Crook is 65


  • Actor Carlin Glynn (“Sixteen Candles”) is 82. 
  • Singer Smokey Robinson is 82. 
  • Singer Lou Christie is 79. 
  • Actor Michael Nader (“All My Children”) is 77.
  • Guitarist Tony Iommi of Black Sabbath is 74. 
  • Actor Stephen Nichols (“The Young and the Restless”) is 71. 
  • Actor Jeff Daniels is 67. 
  • Singer-guitarist Dave Wakeling (General Public, English Beat) is 66. 
  • Victoria Justice is 29
    Talk show host Lorianne Crook is 65. 
  • Actor Leslie David Baker (“The Office”) is 64. 
  • Singer Seal is 59. 
  • Actor Jessica Tuck (“True Blood”) is 59. 
  • Drummer Jon Fishman of Phish is 57. 
  • Actor Justine Bateman is 56. 
  • Actor Benicio Del Toro is 55. 
  • Actor Bellamy Young (“Scandal”) is 52. 
  • Drummer Daniel Adair of Nickelback (and formerly of 3 Doors Down) is 47. 
  • Singer-actor Haylie Duff (“Napoleon Dynamite”) is 37. 
  • Guitarist Seth Morrison of Skillet is 34. 
  • Actor Victoria Justice (“Victorious”) is 29. 
  • Actor David Mazouz (“Gotham”) is 21. 
  • Actor Millie Bobby Brown (“Stranger Things”) is 18.

Friday, February 18, 2022

Hillary Clinton: Fox News 'Awfully Close To Actual Malice'

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Thursday criticized Fox News' coverage of her connection to what some conservatives have argued was a plot to spy on former President Donald Trump but that fact-checkers have found to be severely lacking in context. 

Insider reports Clinton went so far as to accuse Fox of brushing up on the line of actual malice, an important legal distinction in defamation law.

"It's funny the more trouble Trump gets into the wilder the charges and conspiracy theories about me seem to get," Clinton said during a keynote speech at the New York Democratic Party's convention. "Fox leads the charge with accusations against me, counting on their audience to fall for it again. As an aside, they're getting awfully close to actual malice in their attacks."  

Clinton's comments come as the conservative media and former President Donald Trump renew allegations that the Clinton campaign illegally spied on Trump during the 2016 campaign and after he was president.

At the center of the allegations is a recent filing by the special counsel John Durham in his ongoing case against the former Clinton campaign lawyer Michael Sussmann, who was charged last year with lying to the FBI. The filing in question says Sussmann obtained nonpublic data from the White House via a technology executive who had legal access to the data. While the details in the filing raised questions about the ethics of their conduct, Durham did not accuse the lawyer or the tech executive of spying or hacking.

Clinton's line about actual malice comes from a landmark 1964 Supreme Court decision, which set out specific tests for when a public official could make a successful defamation claim. Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin recently lost a case against the Times, which centered the standards the Supreme Court put into place.

As Clinton was speaking from the convention floor, Fox News briefly carried her remarks before cutting out after she mentioned the "big lie" of Trump continuing to claim the 2020 election was stolen.

Sean Hannity Dares Hillary Clinton To Sue

On his Fox News Channel show Thursday night, Sean Hannity dared Hillary Clinton to sue Fox for defamation, responding to remarks Clinton made in a speech to the New York State Democratic Convention, reports Forbes. In the speech, Clinton mocked former President Donald Trump, saying “it’s funny, the more trouble Trump gets into, the wilder the charges and conspiracy theories about me seem to get.”

“We must reject the big lie about the 2020 election and the coverup of the insurrection of last Jan. 6,” Clinton said in remarks that were carried live on Fox News. “And we can’t get distracted — whether it’s by the latest culture nonsense, or some new right-wing lie on Fox or Facebook.”

Clinton went on to say that “Fox leads the charge with accusations against me, counting on their audience to fall for it again. And as an aside, they’re getting awfully close to actual malice.”

“Actual malice,” a legal term that’s considered the standard for proving a libel case in court, clearly caught the attention of Hannity, who said “bring it on. Malice? Really? It’s called news. Hillary, we invite you to bring it on.”

Hannity was referring to allegations Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign had “spied on” Donald Trump, a story that has been heavily discussed on Fox News—by one count, Clinton’s name was mentioned on the network nearly 200 times Thursday alone—and a story that has also been debunked by fact-checkers.

Report: Joe Rogan's Spotify Deal Worth Much More

Spotify's massive contract for Joe Rogan is reportedly worth upwards of $200 million, double what the deal was previously thought to be worth, the NY Times reported Thursday. Rogan's contract covers 3.5 years of exclusivity on his podcasts for the streaming giant.

The Times story tracks Spotify's quest to become a podcast behemoth, which has included the acquisition of several major podcasting companies, and has only been aided by "The Joe Rogan Experience," which the company said has been its biggest podcast in more than 90 countries. But the show has been riddled with problematic themes and accused of spreading misinformation, including on the COVID-19 vaccine.

Spotify came under fire in recent weeks for not moderating Rogan's podcast. Major artists Neil Young and Joni Mitchell left the audio service in protest while #DeleteSpotify trended on social media platforms, but CEO Daniel Ek said in a blog post that the company isn't interested in being a "content censor."

Spotify was already the king of music streaming. But to help propel the company into its next phase as an all-purpose audio juggernaut, and further challenge Apple and Google, it wanted a superstar podcaster, much as Howard Stern helped put satellite radio on the map in 2006, according to The Times. Spotify executives came to view Joe Rogan — a comedian and sports commentator whose no-holds-barred podcast, “The Joe Rogan Experience,” was already a monster hit on YouTube — as that transformative star.

In May 2020, after an intense courtship, Spotify announced a licensing agreement to host Mr. Rogan’s show exclusively. Although reported then to be worth more than $100 million, the true value of the deal that was negotiated at the time, which covered three and a half years, was at least $200 million, with the possibility of more, according to two people familiar with the details of the transaction who spoke anonymously because they were not authorized to discuss it.

How To Choose The Best Music Streaming Service

The best music streaming services have a lot in common. They generally offer mostly identical libraries of songs for about $10 per month, and they all provide a lot of the same features. Most music streaming services have an unpaid trial period, and many offer a free tier; check out Consumer Reports’s guide to free music streaming for details.

You can thank market competition. Music streaming is one of the rare corners of the tech industry where there are multiple companies offering near-identical products. That has forced the streaming giants into a constant race to one-up each other and match competitors’ perks in order to hold on to subscribers. Listeners get to enjoy the benefits of services that just keep getting better.

According to Consumer Reports, there are a few differences. A few have unique features. Some have catalogs of exclusive content, including certain podcasts. You’ll also find a few gaps, where some platforms are missing particular artists and albums, though these are generally exceptions to the rule.

SiriusXM Radio: Tinx to Launch It's Me

SiriusXM has announced Tinx, the 'big sister' of TikTok, has signed an agreement to create a range of new audio content for SiriusXM and its platforms.

Tinx, whose name is Christina Najjar, will launch a new podcast, It's Me, Tinx, via SiriusXM's Stitcher on February 21. Beginning in March, Tinx will also host a weekly radio show, It's Me, Tinx Live, on SiriusXM's Stars channel, where her millions of fans will be able to talk to her directly and live.

Known for her candor, Tinx will be bringing her quick wit and engaging voice to millions of listeners with her new show It's Me, Tinx. Since launching on TikTok and other social platforms, she has earned the affectionate title of "big sister" for her honest and empathetic approach to advice, while her satirical "Rich Mom" content has become a celebrated hallmark of her content.

Listeners can hear new episodes of the It's Me, Tinx podcast every Monday and Friday on Stitcher, the SXM App, Pandora, and all major podcast listening platforms. Beginning on March 16, the It's Me, Tinx Live radio show will air Wednesdays at 11:00 am ET on SiriusXM Stars via satellite (ch. 109) and on the SXM App and will be available to all audiences after its initial broadcast on SiriusXM.

The new show, an extension of what fans already have come to know and love about Tinx, will feature Tinx discussing her own life, offering her takes on pop culture and relationships, and giving recommendations and advice to listeners. Tinx's followers who love to ask for advice during her weekly "Ask Me Anything" will now be able to call in to her live weekly show and talk to Tinx in real time. 

"One of the things I've come to value most is my relationship with my followers, who I wouldn't be here without. I'm so thrilled to bring them even more of the content they love while connecting with them on a deeper level," Tinx said of the show. "My ethos is that if there's a room full of women and someone has a problem, then someone else in that room is bound to have an answer — and this show will be a space for us all to discover and share those answers together. Grab yourself a Tinky Tequila and tune in, it's going to be a wild ride!"

"We are thrilled to bring Tinx and her humor, empathy, and insight to SiriusXM listeners for the first time," said Megan Liberman, SiriusXM's Senior Vice President of News, Talk, and Entertainment Programming.  "From TikTok, where she starts trends and connects more than a million followers, to her regular Q&As on Instagram, Tinx is a phenomenon, a rare talent who can entertain, inform, and inspire a broad audience.  We couldn't be more excited to bring her fun, fearless voice to audio."

Additionally, Tinx will be featured as a contributor on SiriusXM's TikTok Radio, which launched in August 2021 and spotlights top creators from the social media platforms. Listeners can hear an unpredictable journey through the musical world of TikTok where creators and personalities share trending sounds and the stories behind them, the next generation of rising stars and what the TikTok community is vibing to.

Wake-Up Call: Biden..Ukraine Invasion Still 'Very High'

President Biden warned yesterday that the threat of a Russian invasion of Ukraine is still, quote, "very high," saying at the White House, "Every indication we have is they’re prepared to go into Ukraine, attack Ukraine. Meanwhile, Secretary of State Antony Blinken revealed before the U.N. Security Council some U.S. intelligence conclusions about the situation. Blinken said that a sudden, seemingly violent event staged by Russia to justify an invasion would start it, mentioning things like a staged terrorist bombing in Russia or drone strike. He said the offensive would begin with cyberattacks, along with missiles and bombs across Ukraine, and then the Russian troops massed on Ukraine's border advancing into the country. For its part, Russia made a new move towards diplomacy, while still condemning the West for not meeting its demands about NATO, saying in response to U.S. offers to hold talks on limiting missile deployments in Europe, restrictions on military drills and other confidence-building measures, that it was ready to do so.

➤CALIFORNIA SHIFTS TO 'ENDEMIC' APPROACH TO COVID, FIRST STATE TO DO SO: California is shifting its policy to an endemic approach to the coronavirus, the first state to do so, with Governor Gavin Newsom yesterday announcing a plan that emphasizes prevention and quick detection and reaction to outbreaks, leaving mask mandates and business shutdowns behind. The plan also looks to hire more health care workers and stockpile tests, and also push back against false Covid claims and misinformation. Newsom said, "We are moving past the crisis phase into a phase where we will work to live with this virus."

NY Post 2/18/22

⛟POLICE ARREST TWO CANADIAN TRUCK PROTEST LEADERS: Police in Ottawa arrested two leaders of the weeks-long truck protests in Canada yesterday, and continued to threaten to break up the protest involving hundreds of trucks clogging the downtown area of the nation's capital city. 
Tamara Lich arrested
In addition to the arrests of Tamara Lich and Chris Barber, workers put up extra fences around government buildings and police began sealing off much of the downtown area to to everyone except those who live or work there. Interim Police Chief Steve Bell, said, "The action is imminent. We absolutely are committed to end this unlawful demonstration." Defiant truckers, however, continued to blast their horns in defiance of a court injunction against it because of the disturbance to residents.

➤JUDGE SAYS TRUMP MUST TESTIFY IN NYC CIVIL PROBE OF BUSINESS: A judge ruled Thursday that former President Donald Trump must answer questions under oath in New York state's civil investigation of his business practices. Judge Arthur Engoron said Trump's two oldest children, Ivanka Trump and Donald Trump Jr., must also sit for depositions, with all three having to do so within 21 days. They were subpoenaed in December by New York Attorney General Letitia James. Trump in a statement accused James' office of, quote, "doing everything within their corrupt discretion to interfere with my business relationships, and with the political process." James has said her office's probe has found evidence that the Trump Organization used "fraudulent or misleading" valuations of assets like buildings and golf courses to get loans and tax benefits.

📲HOW PICKING UP YOUR SMARTPHONE COULD REVEAL YOUR IDENTITY:  The time you spend on different smartphone apps is enough to identify you out of a larger group of people in more than 30 percent of cases. University of Bath researchers found a statistical model could identify an individual when provided with only six days of app usage data with accuracy one-third of the time. This might not sound like much, but when the models made a prediction regarding who data belonged to, it could also provide a list of the most to the least-likely candidates, and it was possible to view the top 10 most-likely individuals that a specific day of data belonged to. In addition, around 75 percent of the time, the correct user would be among the top 10 most likely candidates. Researchers say it's important to acknowledge that app usage data alone, which is often collected by a smartphone automatically, can potentially reveal a person’s identity. This provides new opportunities for law enforcement and poses risks to privacy if this type of data is misused.

➤ALL MEMBERS OF CONGRESS INVITED TO STATE OF THE UNION: All members of Congress are being invited to President Biden's State of the Union address on March 1st, in contrast to last year, when only a much-reduced number of members were allowed to attend because of the pandemic, and in contradiction of earlier reports that had said attendance was likely to be limited this year too. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's office released the guidelines yesterday from the Sergeant at Arms’ office in consultation with the Office of the Physician. Everyone will be required to be tested for Covid-19 ahead of time and wear masks during the speech, and no guests will be allowed. Cabinet members, Supreme Court justices and military leaders traditionally attend the State of the Union, but it's not yet clear if they will be invited.

🌈SEVEN PERCENT OF U.S. ADULTS NOW IDENTIFY AS LGBTQ: A new high of 7.1 percent of U.S. adults now identify as LGBTQ -- meaning lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or otherwise not heterosexual -- double the percentage from 2012, according to Gallup. The increase in recent years is largely being driven by a higher prevalence of these identities among the youngest adults. Some 21 percent of Generation Z, those born between 1997 and 2003, identify as LGBT, nearly double the percentage of Millennials who do so, and the gap is even wider in older generations.

🦅WIDESPREAD LEAD POISONING AMONG BALD EAGLES: A new study in Science provides the startling information that there is widespread lead poisoning among bald eagles, the national bird. Researchers who tested more than 1,200 live and dead eagles from across the U.S. between 2010 and 2018 found that 46 percent of bald eagles had "chronic, toxic levels of lead," as did 47 percent of golden eagles. It's mainly coming from lead bullets, as the eagles scavenge on animals shot by hunters, and the lead from the ammunition contaminates them as they eat. The researchers estimate the lead poisoning suppresses the population growth of bald eagles by about four percent a year and golden eagles by one percent.

🧠STUDY: BRAINS DO NOT SLOW DOWN UNTIL AFTER AGE 60: It’s a widely accepted fact that our brains slow down as we age, but a new study suggests mental processing speed remains nearly constant until the age of 60. Heidelberg University researchers looked at data on more than one million people, and say their findings suggest perceived reductions in mental speed is due to people becoming more cautious as they get older, and could account for the large body of research that has says mental processing peaks at the around age 20 and then undergoes a steady decline from that point forward. Researcher, Dr. Mischa von Krause adds, “Our finding is encouraging, as our results show that average levels in mental speed in contests demanding fast and forced decisions do not decline until relatively late in the lifespan.”


Russian Shcherbakova Wins Women's Figure Skating Gold, Valieva Stuns with Fourth Place Finish - Russian figure skater Kamila Valieva, who's been the focus of intense attention as she was allowed to continue to compete despite a positive doping test in December, and who'd been heavily-favored to win the gold, stunningly finished in fourth place after falling repeatedly during the women's free skate. Her teammates, Anna Shcherbakova and Alexandra Trusova won gold and silver, respectively, and Japan's Kaori Sakamoto won an unexpected bronze. The 15-year-old Valieva was sobbing and inconsolable as she saw her scores, while Trusova was angry and also in tears because she hadn't won gold despite landing four quadruple jumps. She declared, "I hate this sport!," and also lashed out at controversial Russian coach Eteri Tutberidze, who coaches all three athletes who competed. Alysa Liu was the highest-finishing American, in seventh place.

IOC President Critical of Valieva's Treatment By Entourage After Free Skate - International Olympic Committee president Thomas Bach criticized the treatment of Russian figure skater Kamila Valieva by her entourage after her fourth-place finish following multiple falls during her free skate. Bach said at a news conference, "When I afterwards saw how she was received by her closest entourage, with such, what appeared to be a tremendous coldness, it was chilling to see this. Rather than giving her comfort, rather than to try to help her, you could feel this chilling atmosphere, this distance." As Valieva got off the ice, her controversial coach, Eteri Tutberidze, was captured on camera saying to her, "Why did you let it go? Why did you stop fighting?"

  • U.S.-Born Eileen Gu Wins Gold in Ski Halfpipe for China, Third Medal - U.S.-born and raised freestyle skier Eileen Gu, who competes for her mother's native China, won gold in the ski halfpipe, her third medal in Beijing. She also won gold in freestyle big air and took silver in the slopestyle. She is the first freeski athlete to medal in three events in a single Olympics.
  • U.S. Men Lose to Canada in Curling Bronze Medal Game - The defending Olympic champion U.S. men lost to Canada in the curling bronze medal game. The U.S. was playing for bronze after losing to Great Britain in their semifinal match. The British team will play Sweden for the gold, after the Swedes beat Canada in their semifinal.
  • Second Ukrainian Positive for Doping - A second Ukrainian has tested positive for doping in Beijing, with the International Testing Agency saying that bobsledder Lidiia Hunko tested positive for an anabolic steroid after competing Monday in the monobob, in which she come in 20th. Ukrainian cross-country skier Valnetyna Kaminska also tested positive for doping at the Olympics, as did Iranian skier Hossein Saveh Shemshaki. Russian figure skater Kamila Valieva, who was allowed to continue competing, tested positive in a sample taken in December.
🥇MEDAL COUNT: (As of 4:00 a.m. ET) - Norway is in first place with 31 medals, followed by the Russian Olympic Committee with 27, and Canada with 23. In the gold medal count, Norway is first with 14, Germany is second with 10, and the U.S. and China have eight each. The U.S. has 21 medals overall, eight gold, eight silver and five bronze.  ESPN'S MEDAL TRACKER


⚾TALKS BETWEEN MLB AND PLAYERS LAST JUST 15 MINUTES: One day after what was supposed to the be the start of spring training with the reporting of pitchers and catchers, talks between MLB and the locked-out players Thursday lasted just 15 minutes after resuming following a four-day break. There's no date set for the main talks to resume, while there is a discussion session set for today for non-core issues. There's about two weeks left to reach a new labor deal that would leave enough spring training time for the season to begin on time.

⚾EX-ANGELS EMPLOYEE CONVICTED OF GIVING SKAGGS DRUGS THAT LED TO HIS OVERDOSE DEATH: Former Los Angeles Angels employee Eric Kay was convicted yesterday of providing late pitcher Tyler Skaggs with the drugs that led to his overdose death in 2019 at age 27 while they were in Texas for a road game. Kay, who was the team's public relations contact on many road trips, was convicted of one count each of drug distribution resulting in death and drug conspiracy, and faces at least 20 years in prison and potentially up to a life sentence. The trial included testimony from five MLB players, including pitcher Matt Harvey, who said they received oxycodone pills from Kay at various times from 2017 to 2019.

🏀LAKERS' DAVIS TO BE OUT AT LEAST FOUR WEEKS WITH FOOT SPRAIN: The L.A. Lakers said yesterday that Anthony Davis will be out for at least four weeks after an MRI showed he'd suffered a mid-foot sprain. Davis was hurt in L.A.'s 106-101 win over the Utah Jazz Wednesday. The Lakers said doctors will reevaluate the injury in four weeks. Davis missed 17 straight games in December and January with a strained MCL in his knee.

🏀NBA TO HONOR 75TH ANNIVERSARY TEAM DURING ALL-STAR GAME: The NBA will honor its 75th anniversary team during the All-Star Game on Sunday (February 20th), just as they did for the 50th anniversary team. The All-Star game is being played in Cleveland, where teams drafted by captains LeBron James, who is making his record 18th consecutive All-Star start, and Kevin Durant will face off against each other.

D-C Radio: WPGC Launching 'The Good Morning Show"

Jason Weems, Monique Samuels, Todd B, D. Carter, Guy Lambert

Audacy has announced the addition of “The Good Morning Show” to WPGC 95.5 FM in Washington, DC. Hosted by WPGC personality Todd B. along with multimedia personality Monique Samuels, comedian Jason Weems, executive producer and entertainment reporter D. Carter and WPGC news director Guy Lambert, the show will offer listeners all the music, content, information and giveaways to start the day. “The Good Morning Show” will be heard weekdays from 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. ET, beginning February 22.

“We are excited about the launch of the Good Morning Show on WPGC,” said Ivy Savoy-Smith, Senior Vice President and Market Manager, Audacy Washington D.C. “This eclectic group of individuals is sure to keep the DMV engaged and entertained in the mornings.”

“I am more than proud and excited to be the new morning show host at WPGC, a station that I have called ‘home’ for the bulk of my radio career,” said Todd B. “I am equally thrilled to be working with some ingenious and inspired co-hosts who are, first and foremost, great people!”

Todd B. is a radio veteran with over 25 years of experience on the air, including his most recent role as host of throwback music show “Reminisce Radio” and fill-in morning show host, both on WPGC 95.5. 

“Humbled is an understatement. I am so honored to be joining the new morning show as a co-host on this legendary radio station,” said Samuels. “Truly the DNA of the DMV, I have been a huge fan since I moved here in 2003. All of my years of hosting and podcasting on my platforms have been for this moment. Who knew co-hosting as a guest with Todd B back in December, 2021 would turn into this incredible opportunity? Get ready for a team that will have you grinning from ear to ear with real talk, relatable conversation and hilarious energy.”

Samuels, a cast member on the OWN Network’s “Love & Marriage: DC” and former star on Bravo’s hit reality television series “The Real Housewives of Potomac,” is an entrepreneur, speaker, multimedia personality, writer, music artist and philanthropist. Samuels is the mastermind behind Not For Lazy Moms, a podcast and network of contributors sharing insights, tips, and stories about raising a family while working to achieve their own goals and dreams.

“I’m a B-more boy and product of the DMV, so joining the ranks of WPGC’s airwaves as a co-host of the new morning show is unreal to me,” said Weems. “We’ve assembled something really special and I can’t wait to make people damn near hit guard rails laughing on their morning commutes.”

“I am so excited for the launch of our new morning show,” said D. Carter. “I started at WPGC four years ago as a street teamer and my dreams have literally come true in this building. I am excited to embark on a new chapter in my career and look forward to spicing up your morning commute with my new squad.”

“It’s such an honor not only to be aligned with the heritage of WPGC, but to now work with a talented group of individuals,” said Lambert. “Each cast member is a guru at their craft. Our show will be informative, funny, and truly the fabric of what the DMV represents.”

Lambert has worked in broadcast radio for over 20 years, currently serving as the news director for WPGC 95.5. He is also the host of “Community Focus,” a one-hour weekly community affairs show on WPGC which highlights people and events of influence in the local community.

Philly Radio: NPR's WHYY Has Lost Half Of Its Journalists

Thirty-four WHYY journalists signed a letter to top managers last February complaining about how they were running the newsroom at the biggest public media outlet in the region, reports The Philadelphia Inquirer.

The journalists complained of poor organization, lack of communication, and a focus on quick stories instead of the longer pieces that National Public Radio has long championed. “Inspiration, communication, and morale are low, while burnout, siloing, and attrition are high,” the letter said.

By the end of the year, 13 of the letter-signers, all members of a union that was then more than a year into negotiating its first contract with WHYY, had left. The contract was signed in September.

But, reports The Inquirer,  that doesn’t even capture the full extent of the exodus from WHYY, which had strong radio ratings at the end of last year. Since the beginning of 2021, at least 25 newsroom staffers — about half — have left or given notice, most recently a string of editors.

“The desire to retain our talented colleagues was one of the many reasons we formed a union and fought so hard for our first contract,” according to a statement from SAG-AFTRA, the union that represents about 75 WHYY employees, not all of them in the newsroom. “But WHYY has not addressed all the underlying issues contributing to turnover.”

In interviews, 10 former and six current WHYY staffers cited lower pay than at other media outlets, a lack of opportunities for advancement, a haphazard emphasis on short news pieces to the detriment of longer stories that attracted them to public radio, and a feeling that management is not firmly committed to podcasts and other newer approaches to journalism.

The turnover at WHYY has been happening during a time of volatility and disruption in local news media, including The Inquirer, as outlets here and across the country try to diversify their newsrooms and improve their coverage of communities of color — all while under pressure to find new ways to reach audiences and win their financial support.

The departures at WHYY include Sandra M. Clark, WHYY’s vice president for news and civic dialogue, who left Feb. 11 to become chief executive of StoryCorps, a Brooklyn nonprofit that records and shares the stories of ordinary Americans.

“It is not trying to flee `HYY. It’s not running away from anything, but I have an opportunity that I can’t pass up,” she said of her decision. Clark led WHYY’s efforts to diversify its on-air hosts and news staff and make the station sound more like the region it covers in part by encouraging more community contributors. And she has been praised by outside experts for those efforts.

Clark, a former managing editor at The Inquirer who started at WHYY in 2016, attributed the wave of resignations to the times: The Great Resignation hitting every industry, the intensity of news since 2020, a period of media experiments opening new opportunities, and the increasing availability of remote work.

Many of the staffers interviewed by The Inquirer agreed that large-scale socio-economic shifts — including remote work allowing people to change jobs without moving — contributed to the exodus. But departing staffers also said WHYY management was a major factor. None of the journalists would allow their names to be used for fear of reprisals that could hurt their careers.

Turnover and staff retention are challenges throughout the news industry, said Andrea Wenzel, an assistant professor at Temple University’s Klein College of Media and Communication. Wenzel is researching diversity, equity and inclusion as well as community engagement efforts at The Inquirer and WHYY in the context of larger efforts to make local journalism more equitable and antiracist.

“It’s tricky to make it a neat and tidy story about WHYY. They have some big challenges, but they are not alone,” Wenzel said. It’s the media landscape of the moment.