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Archive for January, 2011

Project 9-6-1 experiments with technology to give listeners more control

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When it comes to interaction with the listeners, radio hasn’t changed much over the years. You can call in requests that are seldom heeded. Or you get a busy signal or no answer at all. Nowadays, you can email in requests, too. Again, probably to no avail.

Project 9-6-1 this week began using Jelli technology, dubbing it “Remote Control Radio” from 7 to midnight weekdays. Users online can see what possible songs are coming up (18 songs are listed at a time buy you can scan the entire playlist). You can give it a thumbs up or a thumbs down, like many personalized Web radio stations such as Pandora and Accuradio. If you love a song, you can launch a “rocket’ that propels a song to the top much faster. If you hate a song, you can unleash a “bomb” that can drop it down the list significantly. You can only bomb to a very limited degree but can rocket more. A listener’s user name is announced on air when they “rocket” a specific song.

You can track and listen to songs via your …

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What happened to Dwight Eubanks yesterday?

dwight_eubanksSeveral people told me that they saw “Real Housewives of Atlanta” recurring character Dwight Eubanks outside his home in Decatur Wednesday with city marshals hovering nearby. A U-Haul was in the driveway with people moving stuff.

Was he being evicted? That’s what neighbors were whispering. And today, there’s a for sale sign up on the home.

I got him on the phone yesterday. “I have a lawsuit with my ex partner,” he said, vaguely. (We haven’t been able to find a lawsuit.)

When I asked if it was his residence, he said, “It’s a  long story but it’s none of my stuff.” (In other words, he skirted the question.) He said the possessions n the lawn and driveway were those of a friend of his. “I’m helping a friend move his stuff,” he said.

According to public records, Eubanks has lived at that residence since June, 1999. Eubanks’ name is not listed as the owner. Terry Morris is the name on two tax liens in 2010. There have been at least two previous eviction attempts, according to tax …

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A month on top for Rihanna’s ‘What’s My Name?’ on Atlanta radio

rihanna-whats-my-nameNo need to ask what Rihanna’s name is because she has saturated Atlanta radio recently with two hits, one of which is now on top by a wide margin over all other songs: “What’s My Name?” It’s been on top for a month and is ahead of Katy Perry’s “Firework” and Pink’s “Raise Your Glass” by a whopping 102 spins.

Four stations now have the song at top rotation, reserved typically for five songs per station. Q100 (85) and Hot (87) increased spins last week to match maximum spins from Wild (98) and V-103 (58).

The top 10 was more or less the same last week, except Bruno Mars’ “Just the Way You Are” finally fell to No. 11 and was replaced by… Bruno Mars’ “Grenade.” An up-and-coming song is Lil Wayne’s new song “6 Foot 7 Foot,” which more than doubled its spins on one week and is getting serious spins from Wild, V-103 and Hot. Nicki Minaj’s “Moment4 Life” is also hot, more than tripling her spins and getting airplay on those same three stations.

Top 10 songs in Atlanta radio
1. …

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‘Regular Guys’ Larry Wachs & Eric Von Haessler signed for three more years

Tim Andrews, Eric Von Haessler, Steve Rickman, Larry Wachs and guest John Smoltz. SOURCE: Rock 100.5

Tim Andrews, Eric Von Haessler, Steve Rickman, Larry Wachs and guest John Smoltz. SOURCE: Rock 100.5

Larry Wachs and Eric Von Haessler have signed on for three more years with Rock 100.5. The pair have been together on and off as part of the “Regular Guys” radio team in Los Angeles and Atlanta for about 15 years.

I hear “Southside” Steve Rickman is still in talks but both sides expect a deal to be made. (Rickman has been part of the team for many years at 96rock but was only promoted to a true “Regular Guy” at Rock 100.5). Producer Tim Andrews, who also became an official “Regular Guy” after the Rock 100.5 version of the show started, has only been under contract for less than a year, but I believe he has no desire to go anywhere else anytime soon.

Gary Lewis, who is regional vice president for Cumulus Atlanta (which operates Rock 100.5 and Q100), said he is happy with his morning show and expects they’ll be around awhile though he declined to be more specific.

Von Haessler …

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Roseanne Barr lives on a nut farm. Literally. She’s signing “Roseannearchy” at Outwrite Books Jan. 19

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Roseanne Barr, 13 years removed from her hit show “Roseanne,” said she has mellowed with age. Over the phone earlier this week from Los Angeles, she almost seemed… happy.

“I hate the word happy,” she said. “Happy is for idiots. It’s not a happy world. Content is a better word. I like content.”

The hard-edged frankness that personifies Barr’s long career has not worn off. Even though she’s been out of the spotlight in recent years, she still pumps out her opinions daily at www.roseanneworld.comand has compiled some of her thoughts into a book she dubbed “Roseannearchy,” which came out Jan. 4.

The book, her third in her life but first since 1994, is a mish-mosh of reminiscing about her past and thoughts on religion, her three husbands and the specter of mortality, to name a few. She will be reading from the book and signing them at Outwrite Books in Midtown Atlanta Wednesday at 6 p.m.

“While it’s a lot of rants and essays,” Barr said, “I also try to make sure …

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Piers Morgan debuts on CNN with Oprah Winfrey with 2.1 million viewers

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Piers Morgan on his first CNN program last night got a lot of advance hype for getting Oprah Winfrey to admit to gorging on 30 pounds of mac and cheese after “Beloved” failed in 1998.

Did he live up to the hype last night? It was probably a losing battle on that front. Oddly, that mac and cheese anecdote didn’t even make the final cut. (Still, he pulled in 2.1 million viewers, a big number for CNN but short of what Fox News’ Sean Hannity got at 2.37 million.)

How did Piers do last night?

  • He did a great job. A promising start.
  • I wasn’t impressed.
  • Missed it but will try to catch it later.
  • Missed it and won’t even bother giving him a chance.

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Oprah has already revealed as much as she’s wanted to reveal on her show or to Barbara Walters. It was unlikely Piers was going to get much new out of her. And he didn’t. But it was a pleasant conversation nonetheless. He was respectful, not too hard hitting, calling her royalty and …

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Regis Philbin says he’s retiring. Who would be a good replacement?

Regis Philbin & Kelly Ripa back in 2001.

Regis Philbin & Kelly Ripa back in 2001.

After a quarter century, 79-year-old Regis Philbin said he’s going to retire later this year.

He made the announcement this morning on “Live With Regis & Kelly.” His show was previously co-hosted by Kathie Lee Gifford (now on “Today”) until 2000 when Kelly Ripa took over.

So who could possibly replace Philbin, who has been in the national spotlight for more than 40 years? Give us your ideas.

Jeff Probst, host of “Survivor,” has been a frequent guest host. Others include actor Mark Consuelos and CNN’s Anderson Cooper, who is starting his own syndicated show this fall.

Join my Facebook fan page and Twitter.

By Rodney Ho, rho@ajc.com, AJCRadioTV blog

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Local designer Anitra Mecadon hosts new DIY show ‘Mega Dens’

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Johns Creek interior designer Anitra Mecadon’s pet sitter in 2009 sent in a tape of Anitra for her to appear on the Animal Planet show “It’s Me or the Dog,” which was being shot in Atlanta. Her dogs, Mecadon admitted, are undisciplined.

The production company liked her – but not for the canine show. Instead, in early 2010,  when she told them she had been dying to do a design show, they created a concept about her re-doing family dens and pitched it to networks.

DIY bit. It commissioned 13 episodes, all to be shot in Atlanta. By August, she was in production.

“It’s happened so fast, it’s been a whirlwind,” Mecadon marveled. “I haven’t had a chance to sit down and grasp what’s going on!”

A Pennsylvania native, she has worked as an interior designer in metro Atlanta for more than a decade and runs her own business Plum Avocado. There, she focuses on commercial work. Her credits include Grindhouse Killer Burgers (both locations) and the Raging Burrito in Decatur.

“Working in …

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‘Real Housewives of Atlanta’ recap, episode 14: Crazy NeNe is back!

rhoa_nene_kim_fight_375“This is my tour, my tour bus, my shows, my fans. Why is this starting to feel like the Kim and Nene show?” - Kandi

Poor Kandi Burruss.

The “Real Housewives of Atlanta’ reality show producers clearly told her to bring Kim Zolciak along on her pre-release promo tour and better yet, stick them both on a tour bus. “That,” the producers figured, “will generate drama.”

Even better: have NeNe Leakes show up!

The result was exactly what the producers were hoping for: yet another Kim and NeNe dust up!

What was up with NeNe tonight?

  • She was just acting crazy for the cameras
  • She really was justifably offended by Kim and had to air it out
  • Does it matter?

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As usual, it’s NeNe who is the source of the drama. She comes on the bus with a bug up her you know what. She imitates Kim on stage in a disrespectful way to Kim’s face, then says she’s upset with the way Kim talks to her assistant Sweetie. (Kandi agrees, but doesn’t make a direct issue of …

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TV best bets with returns of ‘American Idol,’ ‘Hot in Cleveland’

Yes, the No. 1 show for the past seven years,  “American Idol,” is back, aging, if not always gracefully. It moves to a Wednesday-Thursday combo each week this season, instead of Tuesday-Wednesday.

Betty White with Mary Tyler Moore in an on-screen reunion after nearly 40 years.

Betty White with Mary Tyler Moore in an on-screen reunion after nearly 40 years.

Aging more gracefully? Betty White, who just turned a spry 89. The second season of her TV Land sitcom “Hot in Cleveland” is back Wednesday.

And while Showtime’s new show “Episodes” makes fun of American TV execs trying to import British hit shows and making them work  stateside, two shows are truly attempting to replicate U.K. success. Syfy is going with “Being Human” while MTV has “Skins” Monday.

USA has yet another potential hit on its hands Thursday with “Fairly Legal,” a new legal drama starring Sarah Shari. The writing is self assured, thanks to David E. Kelley, and Shari radiates on the screen.

There are some notable guest turns this week, too, including Candice Bergen on “House” Monday, Bob …

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