PAUL HARVEY, 1918-2009
Legendary broadcaster Paul Harvey turned his last page over the weekend. True, he was a conservative, but at least he was a fair one, and I enjoyed his work, esp. "The Rest Of The Story", which I usually only got to hear on road trips since AM reception at my workplace is non-existent because of our MR magnet, plus his show was dropped in K.C. years ago anyway. I always loved his oddball delivery style, and I’ll even admit to imitating Harvey (poorly) in a couple junior high "radio shows" in speech class. I even had the honor of running the board for "Paul Harvey News And Comment" on a rare weekday shift I worked at KKJO in St. Joseph back in the day. He was one of the last throwbacks to a better vanished time in radio, and it’s pretty amazing that he was able to continue working and doing what he enjoyed right up until almost the end of his life. A legend, indeed…good day!
AND NOW, THE WORST OF THE STORY…
"I am an average citizen…I have a microphone."—Rush Limbaugh
Oh really, Rush? Well, I’m an average citizen and I have a microphone too, but I sure’s hell don’t get paid $38 million a year to use it, you pompous prick!
As for radio personalities I dearly wish we could throw back, the Big Fat Idiot has now been deemed the de facto leader of the Republican Party. Does anyone besides me find it just a tad disconcerting that even Republican politicians find themselves apologizing for criticizing Limbaugh because the BFI now holds so much sway? Makes me almost feel pity for the GOP. As for Limbaugh, why doesn’t he get off his fat posterior and run for President himself, if he’s such an all-knowing, all-seeing political badass? Why, because he’s got it too good as it is, that’s why. It seems I’ve been low-balling Limbaugh on his salary in my previous posts at a mere $10 million a year. $38 million a year?!? Just to talk on the fucking radio?!? Nobody’s that good at any profession to rate that kind of salary! Is it any wonder this gasbag opposes increased taxes for the wealthy? I sure don’t see him volunteering to take a pay cut anytime soon in this economic climate.
LET ME UP, I’VE HAD ENOUGH!
I’m getting to the point where I almost can’t bear to watch all the talking heads on the TV news outlets yapping about the economy anymore. One "expert" says the stimulus package will work, while another shoots it down in flames, and no one can seem to agree on anything that will get us out of this mess. And Ben Stein and Donald Trump as financial experts? Puh-leeze! What’s worse, neither this Federal Reserve guy Bernanke nor Treasury Secretary Geithner seem to have a freakin’ clue what to do, either. Oh, and another thing: Fuck AIG!
Sorry if that paragraph wasn’t well-thought-out and didn't live up to my usual standards—it was pure stream-of-consciousness and I just had to vent…
ALMOST HEAVEN, WEST VIRGINIA?
Gee, kids, let’s all move to West Virginia because apparently all their major crises have been solved, being’s how one of their state representatives has time to introduce a bill to ban Barbie. You heard that right, folks, Barbie, as in the plastic doll beloved by gazillions of little girls the world over. They must not have any more economic strife in the Appalachians if all they’re concerned about is how Barbie’s image impacts the prepubescent girls of that region, hence the attempted ban. Here’s the story if you want to waste your valuable time with it.
What I wouldn’t give to be able to repeatedly smack politicians like this clown over the head with a rubber hose...
JIM DANDY NEEDED A RESCUE?
Here’s a rare nugget I unearthed the other night on YouTube that I wasn’t even aware existed. It features the overhauled Black Oak Arkansas lineup—known as just plain Black Oak at that point—performing "Race With The Devil" on "Midnight Special" in early 1978. Killer song, but sadly, Black Oak’s time had already come and gone, and being mired in the heart of the Disco era didn’t help their cause at all. Only singer Jim "Dandy" Mangrum and guitarist Jimmy Henderson (far left in the video) remained from the original BOA lineup, as they tried to shed their Southern-fried boogie-band image and prove to the critics what great musicians they were by playing more mainstream hard Rock. Didn’t work, and it was really strange to see Dandy without his trademark washboard and wearing a shirt, no less! Black Oak made one more album after Race With The Devil before hanging it up a year later.
Also while YouTubing the other night, I came upon this hidden gem from my man John Hiatt that I had never heard before called "Since His Penis Came Between Us", which he performed on PBS many moons ago, but has never actually recorded (to my knowledge, anyway). Nothing pornographic here or anything, just a damn funny song…
CLASSIC MISHEARD LYRIC #109
"Thank God I’m A Country Boy”—JOHN DENVER (1975) “My days are all filled with an easy Country charm...” I somehow managed to mangle this line up as something like "an easy cut of chaw," as in tobacco. I'm pretty certain JD holds the all-time record for the repeated use of the word "fiddle" in one song here.
BLURRING THE LINES
While I'm on the subject of Oldies music, what used to be our main Oldies station in KC, 94.9 FM, is gradually moprhing into a Classic Rock station. They still play a fair amount of ‘60s and ‘70s stuff like Dusty Springfield, Chicago, The Beatles and Elton John, but anymore, 94.9 sounds more like Classic Rock with the likes of Don Henley, Bob Seger and John Mellencamp dominating their playlist. Hell, they even play Boston now! That’s all fine, but now K.C. is totally devoid of a true old-school Oldies radio station, which I think kinda sucks. Even when 9.49 was a true Oldies format, they played a tad too much Four Seasons, Beach Boys and Motown for my liking, while ignoring classics from Little Richard, Fats Domino and Buddy Holly, et al. Methinks there might be room on the AM dial for a good '50s/'60s Rock 'N' Roll heritage station.
In a related topic, if radio stations are in such dire financial shape, then why on earth do they air meaningless baseball exhibition games on weekday afternoons when no one’s listening anyway? About as pointless as selling snow blowers on Maui...
IF A HOCKEY GAME IS PLAYED IN THE WOODS, DOES IT MAKE A SOUND?
Okay, I realize the National Hockey League is still trying to regain its status on the sporting ladder in the wake of the 2004-05 labor stoppage and all, but you’d think they rate slightly better TV coverage on Versus than they get. Versus only airs NHL games on Mondays and Tuesdays during the regular season, which makes very little sense, as the NHL doesn’t gain much by going up against "Monday Night Football" in the fall and ESPN’s "Big Monday" college bassit-ball in the winter and spring. Not to mention that Mondays are typically light nights, schedule-wise, for the NHL, thus the only choice they had this past Monday was the Colorado/New York Islanders game, featuring two teams already hopelessly out of the playoff race. Last night’s Pittsburgh/Tampa Bay broadcast wasn’t a much better match-up, even though they could’ve aired Boston/Philadelphia, a game loaded with playoff implications. It’s not like Vs. has a lot of riveting programming the rest of the week that would be pre-empted, so if nothing else, how about pirating the CBC’s "Hockey Night In Canada" on Saturday nights instead?