Alright, enough with the political blogs and while we’re waiting for my commentary on religion, LOL, I want to talk about local radio, or lack thereof.
Recently the folks at Entercom Broadcasting saw fit to unceremoniously relieve Greg Kihn of his show after a generation on the air.
Now, don’t get me wrong, Entercom can do what it wants. It owns the station, after all. However, it’s our station, too … you know that whole, “public airways” thing.
There was a time when local radio was exactly that, local. You knew the personalities and it wasn’t uncommon for them to know you. The emphasis was on where you lived.
Yes, there was news from around the world and news from up the street. I cut my teeth working in local radio at the legendary KPEN in Los Altos. Not only were we the country’s first jazz fusion station, prior to “smooth jazz” cornering the elevator soundtrack market, but we’d actually play music from Bay Area bands.
Alas, that was then. Now radio is all but void of personality, spontaneity and fun.
Apart from Bob Kieve’s KRTY and KLIV in San Jose and The Zwerling’s KSCO in Santa Cruz, broadcast has become a colorless, humorless wasteland. Loyalty and respect have been replaced by focus groups and playlists.
You know, now that I think about, I’m not really sure if Kihn was fired or his listeners were dismissed. Either way, sadly, it is what it is, big time radio … smaller than anyone could imagine and hardly deserving of a voice. At least that’s what I think.