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Archive for November, 2009

Catching up with former 99xer Rich Shertenlieb

Rich Shertenlieb (center) at a panel about promoting a show with Todd Schnitt (left, formerly of Atlanta's Mix and Real Radio 105.7) and Chris Krok (formerly of WSB-AM) CREDIT: Rodney Ho/rho@ajc.com

Rich Shertenlieb (center) at a panel for the talk show boot camp Nov. 14 with Todd Schnitt (left, formerly of Atlanta's Mix and Real Radio 105.7) and Chris Krok (formerly of WSB-AM) CREDIT: Rodney Ho/rho@ajc.com

At a talk show boot camp here in Atlanta earlier this month, I caught up with Rich Shertenlieb , who became a popular stunt guy with 99X’ Morning X earlier this decade. He’s now part of the Fred and Rich morning show at a sports station in Boston with fellow former 99Xers Fred Toucher and Crash Clark.

They spent three years on rock station WBCN-FM until it died a couple months ago. Management, aware of their popularity, moved the trio to the Hub, a new FM sports talk station. They’ve done very well among younger men.

“The people of Boston have embraced us,” Shertenlieb said. “I think the reason it works is we’re three friends and have always been friends.” He said one way to just get a bit going is to ask what Crash did over the weekend. Or get Fred on one on his …

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TV best bets with ‘Soul Train Awards,’ two xmas dog flicks and finales of ‘Dancing With the Stars,’ ‘Jon & Kate’

mya

The second-biggest show this fall “Dancing With the Stars” closes the dance floor until 2010 this Tuesday. The consensus last week on this blog is Mya to win but Donny Osmond can’t be counted out.

Meanwhile, Atlanta is home to the Soul Train Awards, which taped the show over three-plus hours at the Georgia World Congress Center. It airs Sunday after Thanksgiving. I blogged live from there. If you like Robin Thicke, Toni Braxton or Keri Hilson, check out the live performances. Hosts Terrence Howard and Taraji Henson do some cute “Soul Train” skits and the classic dance line makes a comeback.

Rock fans who get HBO should relish the 25th anniversary concerts for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on Sunday.

MONDAY
Dancing With the Stars” 8 p.m. ABC — Donny Osmond, Mya and Kelly Osbourne face off in the finale. Joanne Krupa fans are still crying in their Playboy magazines.
How I Met Your Mother” 8 p.m. CBS — The slap bet is back! And the world is good.

Jon & Kate …

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WSB-TV’s reaction to Oprah’s pending departure

 oprah winfrey

Oprah Winfrey’s announced departure today strikes a major blow to broadcast networks that carry her, including WSB-TV here in Atlanta, which has remained a dominant station in this market for decades. Having “Oprah” as a lead into the 5 o’clock news was a great benefit for WSB.

The only good thing is syndicators have two years to come up with something to replace her or provide options for stations such as WSB. If certain talk show agreements on rival networks are up for 2011 (and I’m not sure which are), WSB could steal them away. Dr. Phil and Ellen DeGeneres, the most obvious heir apparents, are on WXIA-TV. But she destroys all other daytime shows in ratings, even though hers have drooped a bit in recent years.

Oprah’s 2011 departure

  • She is such a regular part of my routine. A major sadness in my heart.
  • It’s about time.
  • Don’t care. She beats the 2012 apocalypse, at least.

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“We’re going to miss her,” said WSB General …

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Guy Fieri food demo/concert coming to Cobb Energy Centre November 23

guy_fieri_129132

Guy Fieri, the excitable, spiky-haired host of Food Network’s popular “Diner’s, Drive in’s and Dives,” will be coming to Atlanta next month for a concert/food demo at the Cobb Energy Centre.

Fieri already shoots three shows for Food Network, including “Diners, Drive in’s and Dives.” He has two books based on that show. He operates five restaurants. He’s a busy man who decided to add a live road show, too.

“I think anybody who has a million things to do has to have a million and one,” he said in an interview late last month. “I can’t sit still for long. The road shows came out naturally. I’ve done live food demonstrations forever. My first cooking job was as the flambe captain at a table at a fine dining restaurant.”

His goal with the show: “make it a damn rock concert.” He’s had girls throw lace bras at him, like it’s a Van Halen show.

“Expect the unexpected,” he promised. “I don’t know what the hell’s going to happen. I know how we’re going to open the show and …

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Kandi Burruss said a sixth housewife might be coming

Kandi Burruss, Dwight Eubanks and Kim Zolciak yuk it up at Kandi's opening party for her unisex boutique Tags November 19. CREDIT: Rodney Ho/rho@ajc.com

Kandi Burruss, Dwight Eubanks and Kim Zolciak yuk it up at Kandi's opening party for her unisex boutique Tags November 19. CREDIT: Rodney Ho/rho@ajc.com

Despite rumors that Sheree Whitfield might not be coming back, Kandi Burruss said last night at the opening of her new unisex boutique Tags that Bravo is negotiating with all of five of them for a third season.

She wasn’t aware if anybody has signed a contract yet, so there are no guarantees all five will be back. It will come down to whether Bravo is willing to pay enough money. NeNe Leakes had said at South DeKalb Mall earlier this year that they were each paid $100,000 for season two. Expect a big raise given that “Real Housewives” averaged about 2.8 million viewers, by far the biggest so far for any “Housewives” franchise.

Burruss said it’s possible that Bravo will add a sixth housewife. Indeed, the network is fishing around for someone to fill that slot though she said she may not know herself until the network starts …

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Project Runway finale a no-brainer

Are we still awake?

Seriously, I thought tonight’s big finale was more interesting than previous episodes … even though we all knew Irina was a shoo-in to win!

I did think Irina had the strongest collection, although the all-black fabric made it difficult to see the intricate detailing. That notwithstanding, you had to be impressed by the hats, the gloves, the total LOOK of it all. Save for that cutout gray sweater, I really found her designs innovative and fun to watch.

Meantime, Carol Hannah and Althea staged decent enough collections but nothing special. Carol Hannah makes lovely dresses with no edge, sort of like Rami Kashou did on Season 4. Althea’s designs – well, her aesthetic escapes me, I admit. The half-baggy, half-tight pants; the unstructured tops – none of it looks remotely interesting. Her collection looked the least cohesive (of the three) to me, yet the judges called out Carol Hannah on that same charge.

And now a word about Lifetime. I …

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Sarah Palin gooses Oprah’s ratings numbers; Lady Antebellum, Taylor Swift scorch Atlanta radio

Credit: ABC News

Credit: ABC News

“The Oprah Winfrey Show” brought in its biggest numbers in two years this past Monday thanks to the appearance of Sarah Palin. Locally, she drew a 9.5 rating, more than 50 percent higher than normal. That’s more than 300,000 viewers in Atlanta.

Nationally, the most popular telecast last week was NBC’s Sunday nighit matchup between the Patriots and the Colts with 22.3 million viewers. Locally, the Vanderbilt/Kentucky college football game this past Saturday reigned with 559,000 viewers.

The CMA Awards, which came in fifth nationally with 17.2 million viewers and featured plenty of Georgians (Lady Antebellum, Sugarland, the Zac Brown Band), roped in the second most viewers in Atlanta during primetime last week with 493,000 fans.

Atlanta-based TruTV’s latest reality show entrant “Full Throttle Saloon,” featuring a biker bar that is only open two weeks a year during a huge South Dakota biker rally, brought in a solid 1.3 million viewers opening night Nov. 10. It’s …

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WSB-TV van, mast up, hits power line, gets fried

wsb-van_309925c

Wow, what a rush!

WSB-TV reporter Tom Jones and photographer Leonard Raglin were leaving the Fulton County jail yesterday in their van but forgot to take the mast down. It hit a power line, coursing 115,000 volts of energy into the van and the crowd, causing a loud explosion, destroyed the truck and generated a crater in the asphalt. Neither the AJC story nor the WSB story said who was driving though Doug Richards on his blog said it was Raglin.

Fortunately, both men survived with smoke inhalation and minor burns.

“Georgia Power workers on the scene were surprised anyone lived, said an APD spokesman in a statement. “The 115,000 volts traveled through the vehicle and ground, also hitting and destroying a water main which caused water to be out in the area.”

The mast is the telescoping pole used to send out live signals. It’s supposed to be lowered before putting the vehicle in motion. Richards provides some perspective about how an alarm should go off when the van …

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Report: Sheree Whitfield off ‘Real Housewives’?

Mediatakeout, which is often right but sometimes wrong, reports that Sheree Whitfield has been booted off “Real Housewives of Atlanta,” citing no concrete sources.

The Bravo publicist artfully dodged the question when I sent her an email asking her whether Sheree is gone:

hey rodney. bravo hasn’t made any decisions about season three yet. feel free to circle back and hopefully soon i’ll have more info for ya

I’ve sent emails or text messages to Lisa Wu Hartwell, Sheree herself and Kim Zolciak and have not heard anything yet. I’ll update this if I get any responses at all.

I’ve heard similar rumors and facetiously gave the greatest odds that Sheree would be out a couple of weeks ago (2-1). In an unscientific blog poll of more than 3,300 people, 29% wanted NeNe out, 26% wanted Sheree out. Kim got 19% of the votes while Lisa got 16%. Kandi was the most popular, with just 10% wanting her gone.

Bravo has not officially renewed the show but given its strong ratings, there’s 100% …

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Mad Libs for radio comments on this blog

My colleague John Kessler, who does the Food & More blog, posted this comment, which is very amusing and reminds me of what happens on this blog, too.

From Darin, who is never allowed to stop commenting on this blog:

Mad Lib for Atlanta-restaurant blog comments:

You think _________ can make good _________ cuisine? Dude, you don’t know what good ________ is!! Get your _________ out of the sand and go visit _________, where I grew up. That’s where the real stuff is! Seriously, you can’t even get a decent _________ in Atlanta.

So here’s my version of what I see on this blog whenever I comment about virtually any Atlanta  radio station.

Atlanta radio _____! I’ve tried to listen to _____ and ______ but they are just _______. What’s wrong with this city? I came from ______, where the radio stations give you ______ and _______ . It’s so _____, it’s driven me to my ______. Heck, I’m even willing to pay for______, where you can actually hear …

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