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Archive for November, 2009

Catching up with… former WSB-AM talker Chris Krok

Krok @ the talk show boot camp. CREDIT: Rodney Ho/rho@ajc.com

Krok @ the talk show boot camp. CREDIT: Rodney Ho/rho@ajc.com

At last Saturday’s talk show boot camp at a Perimeter hotel, I spent a few minutes catching up with former WSB-AM talk show host Chris Krok, now morning host at 940/WMAC-AM in Macon (6 a.m. to 9 a.m.) Krok is also program director (that helped bump him to a livable salary.)

You can catch 940 in parts of Atlanta after sunrise.

Krok, who was at WSB from early 2006 to late 2007, seems happy. If he’s still disappointed WSB-AM dumped him in favor of Herman Cain nearly two years ago, he’s not showing it. (”I’m still [PD] Pete Spriggs’ No. 1 fan,” he said.) Clearly, he was originally groomed to be a future replacement for anyone planning to leave the daytime lineup but someone high up decided he wasn’t ready.

Sure, Macon is market #155 vs. Atlanta (market #7). But he’s now a bigger fish in a smaller pond. “I’m having just as much fun,” he said.

Politicians, he observed, are just as hypocritical and potentially dirty in a …

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Jason Lee (’My Name is Earl’) playing Elvis impersonator in new TNT drama pilot

Jason-Lee-My-Name-Is-Earl

Jason Lee, fresh off a four-year stint on NBC’s quirky “My Name is Earl,” has signed on to star in a possible TNT drama called “Delta Blues.”

In the pilot episode, he’ll play a Memphis cop who also moonlights as an Elvis impersonator. There are no guarantees TNT will actually turn it into a series but the fact the Atlanta-based network sent out a press release about it bodes well for its future. And George Clooney is involved as an executive producer.

Lee  is also working with sister station Adult Swim on a possible live-action skateboarding comedy, according to Hollywood Reporter.

This is from the press release:

The pilot for DELTA BLUES, which comes to TNT from George Clooney and Grant Heslov’s Smokehouse Pictures and Warner Horizon Television, will be directed by Emmy® nominee Clark Johnson (The Shield) from a script by Liz M. Garcia (Cold Case) and actor Joshua Harto (The Dark Knight). Clooney, Heslov and Garcia serve as executive producers. Henry Bronchtein (The …

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Q100’s Bert Show goes on campaign against the phrase ‘Hotlanta’

Hotlanta

  • Love it! Use it! Embrace it!
  • Ban it! Kill it! Mock it!
  • Don’t care.

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I have noticed over the years that people who don’t live in Atlanta will often refer to our lovely city as “Hotlanta,” thinking they were cool. In fact, they always act as if they’re “in the know” by saying it. Truth is: we never say it. Ever. Except to make fun of folks who say “Hotlanta.”

taraji-henson-terrence-howard

Earlier this month, I heard actress, D.C. native and cohost Taraji Henson (left, with Terrence Howard) say it at the Soul Train Awards, airing Nov. 29 on BET and Centric. I mocked her in my blog.

Anyway, Q100’s Bert Show has decided to take this important issue head on. They are asking their listeners and celebrities to tell outsiders not to say that term on penalty of eye rolls and sighs.

The morning show already told part-time Atlantan Janet Jackson to spread the word and she agreed to pass it on to Jermaine Dupri. Jeff Dauler saw Jordan Knight (New Kids on the …

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Who made the final three on ‘Dancing With the Stars’?

Who do you think will win next week?

  • Donny Osmond
  • Mya
  • Kelly Osbourne

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Voters opted for personality over grace and skill by eliminating model Joanne Krupa.

Krupa couldn’t have been more boring as a person but she really did evoke impressive elegance on the dance floor, especially on the slower dances such as the waltz.

She had the second highest judges’ scores, garnering 81 out of 90, getting 9s from all three judges Monday night on all three dances. So she missed the finals next week.

But both singer/entertainer Kelly Osbourne (78 out of 90) and singer/entertainer Donny Osmond (just 74 out of 90) overcame the judges’ scores to overtake her in the voting.

R&B singer Mya (with a near perfect 87 out of 90) had by far the best judges’ scores, proving her superior dancing skills over everybody else. She is averaging 26.9 per three judges over 13 dances.

But realistically, this is also a popularity contest and she simply lacks the …

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TNT’s ‘Christmas in Washington’ featuring Usher, Sugarland

usher

Atlanta-based TNT picked a couple of Atlanta icons, Sugarland and Usher, to help celebrate the holidays in its annual “Christmas in Washington” special to air December 20 at 8 p.m.

Sister station TBS’s new talk-show host George Lopez will host. Other stars include Mary J. Blige, Neil Diamond and Rob Thomas. Usually, the president and first wife show up. It will be taped at the National Building Museum Dec. 13.

TBS after Lopez’s show Wednesday night will debut a standup comedy show called “The Very Funny Show” hosted by former “Bill Engvall Show” star Tim Meadows.

The comics on night one include Henry Cho and Whitney Cummings.

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Remember MTV’s ‘Remote Control’? Host Ken Ober, 52, has died

remote-control-ken-ober

People of a certain age (say, between the ages of 35 and 45) will remember MTV’s very first original non-music show “Remote Control.”

Host Ken Ober presided over a Gen X trivia game in which the contestants sat in leather recliners and holding big remote controls, answered questions about pop culture. Losers would get thrust out of the show through breakaway walls with barely a chance to say goodbye. Random junk food were thrust at the mostly college-age student for commercial breaks. Dopey skits would populate the show while Ober would crack sarcastic. Topics included “Inside Ed McMahon” and “Cartoons.”

It helped open up doors for narrator Colin Quinn (later, on “Saturday Night Live” and a standup headliner), Adam Sandler (ditto, with SNL and many many movies) and Denis Leary (”Rescue Me”).

Sadly, Ober died over the weekend, causes yet unknown. While many of his brethren did go on to bigger and better things, I really can’t say I recall anything notable Ober did post …

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Star 94 raises $558,000 for Children’s Healthcare

Star 94, in its seventh year raising money for Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, had its toughest radiothon so far.

Listeners pledged $558,000 last week during the three-day Cares For Kids fundraiser. Rick Mack, the general manager, said about the same number of people pledged this year as last year but simply weren’t able to give as much. That pledge total is down 32 percent from 2008.

I’ve been covering this radiothon since I started this blog in September 2004. That year, Star raised $1.167 million. This was followed by $1.2 million in 2005, a peak of 1,215,834 in 2006, $1,212,437 in 2007 and then a big dropoff last year to $825,284.

Over seven years, Star’s listeners have given more than $7.1 million.

Here’s the official description of the hospital:

Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, a not-for-profit organization, is committed to enhancing the lives of children through excellence in patient care, research and education. Managing more than half a million patient visits …

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Are the Regular Guys too political?

I caught up with Rock 100.5’s Larry Wachs on Saturday at the Talk Show Boot Camp, where he was a panelist.

He said he’s heard complaints that the Regular Guys show has become too political, but he doesn’t feel the actual amount of political talk is any different from the past. The difference, perhaps, is the depth of their outrage over issues.

One thing he says they are going to work more on is to look more into the humor of politics, to “find the funny” like “The Daily Show” does.

He’s also psyched to be working with the Braves again. Despite some tension with manager Bobby Cox in the past while they were at 96rock, he said Cox likes the show and is looking forward to working with them on Rock 100.5 next year.

The Regular Guys has held steady this year under the new people meter measurements among older listeners but the past couple of months, its 18-34 numbers have been cut in half. That might be a sampling problem or an issue of content, or both. It’s hard to say. …

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TBS’s ‘George Lopez Show’ averages 1.6 million viewers first week

How do you like “The George Lopez Show” so far?

  • Promising. Definitely worth checking in regularly.
  • So far, so so. Not into it.
  • Don’t care for Lopez. Won’t be watching it at all.

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TBS’s “The George Lopez Show” averaged 1.6 million viewers its first week, a very solid week based on modest expectations.

TBS sent out a release gleaning the best data from the first week. His viewers’ median age was 33, the youngest among late-night talk shows.

Among 18-49 and 18-34 demographics, he beat season-to-date averages of shows such as “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart,” “Jimmy Kimmel Live” and “The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson.” (Kimmel is on at 12:05 a.m. and Ferguson starts at 12:35 a.m. but Stewart is head to head with Lopez.)

About one-third of his audience came from Hispanics and 24% came from African Americans.

The four-day total on TBS was 1.8 million Monday, 1.4 million Tuesday, 2 million on Wednesday (after Tyler Perry’s …

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Neal Boortz cracks up talk show seminar

Neal-Boortz-speech

A week after being inducted into the National Radio Hall of Fame, Neal Boortz regaled about 100 talk-show hosts and related radio folks with advice and stories at a special forum Saturday at the Crown Ravinia at the Perimeter.

His thoughts included these:

- “You have listeners. They’re not followers. When you think these people are there because they will follow you to hell or lead them on some great crusade, your show will start to suffer. You’re on your way out the door. In the bluntest language possible, your job is to keep listeners long enough for the station to play some commercials… You aren’t there to save the world. You’re not there to preserve the republic or breath new life into the constitution… People will get tired of you. You won’t sound genuine.”

Cutting off callers is not a sin. “If you always let listeners talk until they’re finished, your show will tank. I think I can count 10 times I have ever let a caller stay on the air that long, til they say, ‘Thanks, …

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