Monday, June 25, 2018

The '7-F' BS That Failed KGO's PD Mike Anthony; Cumulus CEO Berner To SF MM Harvill: 'Make Changes'; Lee Hammer Says 'Yes' But What Now? Bearman on Short Leash; Copeland Might Be Back; Rothmann/Thurston Probable Keepers; Franklin Iffy; 415 Media Inside Story Monday

Image result for Mike Anthony KGO
OUT at KGO and KSFO: Mike Anthony
NO MORE "7F" BS; hallelujah --maybe there is a god.

When Mike Anthony took over KGO Radio two and a half years ago, the station was in its latest doldrums; thinking forward, Anthony did one better: his first major move was to, a ha, change the format (again) back to talk from news; not the old KGO form of news-talk, but his version which amounted to lifestyle crap that never caught on and was the forefront of KGO's latest downfall. Yes, it was already in a tailspin with marginal ratings and severe reduction in advertising revenue, only Anthony seem destined to burn the corpse.

That he did. And now, finally, he's gone.

Here comes new MM, Doug Harvill, making his first significant move but the move was really made a few weeks back when I reported Cumulus CEO, Mary Berner said changes were coming to the once-powerhouse 810 AM.

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Doug Harvill
Anthony, who had little PD experience and came from a small-budget San Jose station was never able to make KGO relevant. His managerial style was to try old has-been ideas only none of them worked and the few remaining people at the station weren't excited; his revamped morning slew of talkers were essentially old, tired, retreads who never registered with listeners. Rumors of Anthony's demise began percolating; once Harville was hired and got a directive to make changes from Berner, Anthony was gone.

So now KGO again is about to undergo another iteration under Lee Hammer, the veteran programmer who ran KNBR and will now run KGO and KSFO, although KSFO is actually a profitable operation despite its impish local morning show run by clowns who cherish the ultra-right. Its temporary fixture as a Bay Area conservative outpost keeps it going so Hammer will leave it alone until he doesn't.

KGO? Cumulus, and by extension, Harville, have to decide if its middle-dial station is worth the effort in dwindling terrestrial AM radio. The Bay Area has always been a news-talk bastion and even with KGO muddled in programming abyss, there is a market, still, for news and talk. Like, say, "newstalk radio." Anthony slaughtered that idea with his foolish lifestyle brand that sounded positively ridiculous especially when major news broke and a host would be talking about his favorite breakfast cereal. Seriously now, how does a programming director get away with that...especially in these uncharted times when there's a new story almost every hour with a Trump in the White House.

The real embarrassment en fuego took place at night, where, unbelievably, Anthony ran a taped, earlier-in-the-day catastrophe called the Ethan Bearman Show --mind you if a big news event broke out, how lovely to turn on KGO and listen to a guy talking about lasagna recipes. DISASTER. Anthony was trying to score points for tight-fisted Cumulus by this moronic move (to save money) but it only hastened his demise.

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Mary Berner
Thank God.

I don't know what the immediate KGO plan is; I don't think they do either but probably new and fresher voices. A weekend ensemble probably mixed with the dreaded taped financial crap but maybe something bold too. We'll have to wait and see. (I know, I'm dreaming.)

Bearman, who has zero ratings and no following is probably on a short leash. There is no way he keeps the 10-12 PM timeslot unless Hammer is completely brain dead because Hammer knows Bearman has no chance.

I'm not a Brian Copeland fan but if the rumor mill has it he might be coming back, he's better than Bearman (which is not saying much)

Chip Franklin has a contract but he could be bought out because his show is "7F" nirvana and that's not in play.

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Lee Hammer
Hammer likes John Rothmann, a lot. I would love to see Rothmann have a gig, say 7-10 PM weeknights or at least his own show on the weekend. With politics and Trump in the forefront this would seem to be an easy call for Hammer.

Pat Thurston figures to be a keeper. Michael Finney's consumer show is a ratings draw and will stay aboard.

I'm sure there's a lot on the plate and changes are coming but if you read me you already know that.



  1. Ronn back 9-12, news 12-1, 1-4? No idea, 4-7 News, 7-10, Rothman, 10-1, thurston, 1-4, Copeland.

    1. I like Ronn, but not sure he should be back 3 hours, he has health issues, perhaps 1 hour show or 2 hours. I vote for Rothmann either 9 to noon, or his old slot 10 pm to 1 am. This is for purely selfish reasons, I work retail and have a long commute, often I work 1 pm. to 9:30 p.m. those times would allow me, for the most part to listen to all of Rothmann's show, but I think he deserves 9 to noon, or 7 pm to 10 p.m. Pat could get either the late nite or afternoon slot, there should be a slot for Brian as well, he is local, has a different take on certain issues, and does some interesting interviews with celebrities (Ben Veeren, Johnny Mathis, and the daughter of Grace Slick and Paul Kanter), certainly Brian is better than Bearman, Chip or Maureen Langdon. Keep John Batchelor, and if they want a syndicated show bring on Bill Press, he has ties to the Bay Area, (use to sit in for Ronn) knows politics, and DC, a good mix.

  2. Former KGO staff blown out in the last station change have been enjoying a lovely morning of scha·den·freu·de. The word is that no one said good bye to Anthony and there were a lot of smiles among the remaining staff. Hammer can be a tough guy, but at least he knows how to program and manage a talk station.

  3. Oh Lordy,
    I thought they already cut the head off of that turd called KGO-AM.

    Let me guess???
    Now they can even attempt to sell KGO with such crappy numbers, and a crappy transmitter output of about 17,000 watts and NOT 50,000 according to recent field strength measurements conducted by a prospective buyers engineer.

    No money to fix it right now...gotta pay for managements monthly parking.

  4. Owens has no energy left; like RL says, young and fresher all the way except add Rothmann in this mix for obvious news reasons.

  5. But but but Bearman was on CNN and talked bad about Trump. Surely that guarantees him at least Pat Thurston status right? Right??

  6. "his revamped morning slew of talkers were essentially old, tired, retreads who never registered with listeners"

    TAnd they are thinking of bringing Brian Copeland back??? Hellooooo.

  7. Rich (or anyone who cares to answer): What is / are the 7F's constantly referred to? Are they:

    or what?

  8. I linked it in the beginning of the post but here:

  9. I wish Hammer well and I’m pulling for him. But I don’t think the answer is recycling has-beens like Copeland, Thurston or Rothman. They need to look for new talent. A good start would be to dump the morning show, Chip and Bearman. Nobody would care if they left. Let’s go for a fresh start.

  10. The talk genre is so bad here that I’ve been listening to KFI am640 in LA for last five years.

  11. Rothmann would be excellent for the 7-10 slot. Chip Franklin needs to go.

  12. maybe john rothman is the only guy you keep..pat thurston gets kinda flighty if she talks about pop culture or non political topics plus when she and rothman work together she seems to interrupt him frequently

  13. How does putting on Rothman or Thurston or Owens or Copie constitute a new idea? These people are either old or fill ins. Terrible station. Once KNBR goes FM KGO is officially dead.

  14. What does old or fill ins have to do with being a good or bad host? Bearman is younger, a newer kind of hosts, so to speak, how is that working out. Almost all the right wing hosts that gets big rating have been on the air for years, Savage, Hannity, Rush and Mark Levin. Rothmann, as Rich often points out, should be on the air, because he is intelligent, knows politics, can engage callers, and has many fans in the Bay Area.

  15. 40 years in radio watching programmers come and go. It's always astounded me that there's no end to the line of bad radio people who make a good living by failing their way to the top, over and over again. Consultants you never heard of before brought into major (MAJOR) stations knowing zilch about the market and immediately start dismantling a successful format (or one in need of some light touch TLC) and plugging in their flavor of the month. Three months later, they're gone, leaving behind a ratings and revenue disaster and careers in ruins (Think KFRC's "your life, your music" or "Free FM"). They're able to get in only because they have a good enough gift of gab (read "bullsh*t) to dazzle some station manager who can't run his/her own business into hiring them and their "formula".

    Like so many other stations, KGO could come back if Cumulus would simply hire the right PD, pay for talent, promote the thing and STAY OUT OF THE WAY.

    Lee Hammer just might be that guy. I'll check in to see what he's doing.

    End of rant.

  16. Rothman stinks. Thurston stinks. Copeland stinks. Bearman is the worst of them all. Morning show is garbage from Fresno. Place has no identity. Mike Anthony took a bag of garbage that was handed to him and his plan was to improve it by setting it on fire. Lee hired Mike!

    1. Sheldon from AlamedaJune 26, 2018 at 3:37 PM

      Sounds like someone is stressed out & sleep-deprived. Maybe 11:55 could use a daily dose of Ray T & "The Late Show", up & down the West Coast of this great planet of ours, including parts of Mexico & parts of Canada. Free trade over the airwaves with no taxes or tariffs whatsoever. My good sir, Raphael Vincent "Ray" Taliaferro should most definitely hold court once again during the long-overdue righteous live & local resurrection of the midnight/early morning hours of the 50,000 watt clear channel flagship once proudly known as KGO NewsTalk 810. Maybe, just maybe, what goes around, comes around. Are we having fun yet?

    2. Ray Taliaferro lol. Sorry, that George Takei sounding Titanic has passed.

    3. 4:49pm Where's your civility? Do you even have a clue about Ray's background? An aircheck of Taliaferro, from KGO, was sampled by Brian Eno and David Byrne and used on "America Is Waiting", the first track on My Life in the Bush of Ghosts. The album was recorded at Wally Heider Studios, around the corner from the KGO radio studios, then at 277 Golden Gate Avenue, San Francisco. Taliaferro aired the last interview (a full 58-minutes) done with Walter Cronkite on his Monday, July 27, 2009 program, following the news of Cronkite's passing. Ray certainly has not passed and continues to be active in SF politics, arts, & fund-raising events.

  17. the giants guys sound like they assume you can see what they see like a screen like they are so used to television broadcasts and videos. on radio you don't see or know everything going on.not just, ''you can never give the score enough'', also' you can never mention who's at bat and what the pitch is enough etc.''. sometimes youre thinking ''who the frig hit that home run?!''. lasy ass basties.

  18. Bearman (the fake Bay Area girl) has to go. Franklin has to go (what an embarrassment) He is the most obnoxious host on all radio here.. Copeland? Don't really like with his delivery and laughs at what isn't funny (even his own sch-itch), John Rothman yes. Thursten? Maybe if she tones down the Trump rants (not a trump fan but enough is enough. She actually goes off the rails then it's hard to take her opinions seriously. Move on to the topics. We get it Pat. Move on and give us good news as you used to do.

    I am up and out a 0400 and on the road between construction projects so night radio i.e. Rothman at 7 to 10? I'm sawing wood so can't listen. Rothman 10-12. I like A&G in the early morning when I'm driving down HWY 1 to Carmel and not ready for heavy political debate. Funny satire fits the bill for me at that time.

    1. Haha you mean the racist and racist show. Y'all giving yourselves away.

    2. At least A & G can look at both sides of an issue. there is NO question they lean right, but the do call BS on right side of the aisle politicians when they deserve it. Your Bearmans, Franklins and Thurstons are SO far left it's credulous. I've noticed Management has started making these shills take phone calls and I'm always surprised at how many people call in opposition to these hosts liberal rants. I am no trump fan either, but i am really getting sick of these people who make a living out of bashing him.

  19. 11:55 Just who do you like? Perhaps you don't like talk radio at all? Or perhaps right wing radio, if so you have plenty of choices between KSFO, and 810 am, as well as Sacramento's stations 650 and 1530 am

  20. does Captain Obviuos say: posey run down from game grind? : did sending mac Williamson constantly up and down to minors made him over eager to prove himself so he banged into walls for team to prove himself so he wont get sent down again leading to concussion . Giants yo yo-ing possibly ended a valuable sluggers career? : was James Harden given ''MVP'' when Le Bron could have been easily considered so the league wanted to make it look like there was more to the NBA than The Warriors and Le Bron? give it to Harden to spread the interest around. Captain Obvious, what does the Captain say.