Jeff Dauler returned to the Bert Show, entering the studio at 7:43 a.m., after lengthy back-and-forth negotiations.
“It’s done,” Jeff said. He said the attention he’s been getting felt like Ferris Bueller (left). “I’m so embarrassed by this,” he said. “It was really surprising.”
Jeff has been off the air since Monday. His last three-year contract expired December 31. I’m told a rival station (likely, Star 94) offered him a good deal late last year, which triggered a “right to match” provision. Q100 had the right to match or improve upon the offer by Friday. If they chose not to, he would have gone to Star. But Q100 decided to pay up. The terms were not revealed on the air. I hear he will be making well into the six figures and that he may have even gotten a raise in the end. He has endorsement deals with Georgia’s Own Credit Union and AT&T.
Based on Jeff’s “Jersey Shore” analogy story on his blog yesterday, he was offered a good renewal deal last summer. He didn’t take it immediately. He looked at other options simply because he wanted to see what he was worth in this current market. Some other options were decent but he decided to stay with Q100 and told the bosses he was ready to sign the original deal. Q100 management, however, changed the offer and made it significantly worse.
Bert Weiss tried to work things out as a go between. It became a stalemate. Then the rival station’s offer came in and things looked pretty bleak for Jeff staying at Q100. The station even pulled his name off the Web site last Wednesday, the day before his contract was over. He was off the air Monday. But clearly, Q100 management had a change of heart this week.
“There was a lot of anger, a lot of questioning. It was really stressful for both of us,” he said, referencing his wife Jessica, who does a weekly “Jessica Shops” segment. “It’s like asking out the person who just called you ugly and fat.”
“The reason why I’m in this chair is because of the people in this room,” he added.
“There was collateral damage,” Bert said, including all the vitriol against traffic gal Wendy Adams.
“I didn’t read it,” Wendy said. (Smart move.)
Jeff has been with the show since it started in the spring of 2001. As a producer, he not only provides sarcastic on-air comments but also books acts and helps design the show behind the scenes.
“It’s been a comedy hiatus since he’s been gone,” one caller said.
The Bert Show is one of the top morning shows in town. Among younger listeners, only Frank & Wanda at V-103 beats it.