This was originally a just a response to a comment made by JD Curtis on my "Limbaugh: Classless Putz" blog entry. As I started to write more...and more...and more...I thought it made sense to convert this into a post unto itself.
I probably would be interested in reading G. Liddy's biography. I don't agree with all of his politics, but he's a REAL man...as opposed to all the chicken-hawks out there that populate talk radio these days. I've also found him to be very open minded, in his own way. One of his favorite guests from back in the Clinton days was Lanny Davis, who is about as liberal as you can get (Liddy would call him a "Liberal's liberal"). I'd like to see el Rushbo engage in a reasoned dialogue with a liberal like Davis.
I agree that Chris Matthews is un-listenable. Truth be told, I don't like most left-leaning commentators. I think Keith Olbermann is technically good as a speaker, but he takes things to an extreme far too often with his content. Speaking of extreme content, I think Art Bell is also technically very, very good...great radio voice, knows how to work callers, etc. His subject matter is not my cup of tea, but he's great to listen to never the less.
My two least favorite media types? Hands down it's Larry King & Don Imus.
Larry King has no discernible talent as far as I can tell. I'll take that one step further: if lung cancer had a voice, it would sound like Larry King. What's more, Larry King is notoriously lazy as a broadcaster, doing virtually no research and routinely asking incredibly stupid questions.
Don Imus is horrible, simply horrible. Half the time I'm not sure what language he is speaking (he mumbles so much), and by all accounts he is simply a bitter, obnoxious, racist prick.
Of course my favorite radio/media person is, hands down, Howard Stern. That choice will not win any popularity awards, but so be it; I happen to think the guy is incredible talented, and I've counted myself as a listener since the late 80's. Sometimes I do have to turn him off when his content gets a bit much, but on balance the guy is a radio genius. I doubt that you would have the likes of Limbaugh, Imus and a few others without Stern. This is the guy who, more than anyone else, was able to ditch the records on mainstream radio in favor of a true talk format. He's also extremely under-rated as an interviewer. I'm not the only one who feels this way, as Stern probably has a paid audience of about 9 million listeners. They key word there is "paid". How many of Limbaugh's 20 million would fork over the shekels to hear his "talent on loan from god"? I'm thinking it would be some number south of 9 million.
Get Liddy's autobiography, you won't be disappointed. I lent it to 2 different people and they both liked it as well.
I liked Art Bell. George Noory is a good replacement. I actually emailed Ian Punnet once and he emailed me back. No kidding.
Imus talks like he has a mouthful of something. I tried to get into him but I was unimpressed.
Take away potty humor and Stern loses about half of his show.
He was at least somewhat funny when he had Jackie Martling on his team.
I wish he'd do 'Black Jeopardy' more often though, like once a week. It would probably help his ratings.
I will take that suggestion on the Liddy bio. I have a few things in queue to read already, but that will go on the list.
Imus...well rumor as it that he has really bad fitting dentures. Just a rumor though.
As for Stern, well take away the senseless "liberals are evil" nonsense and half of Limbaugh's audience goes. The difference is that Stern can be funny without the potty stuff...Limbaugh though is a one-trick pony. Also, Stern knows that he is full of crap...Limbaugh though believes his own act.
I agree about Martling, although with one qualification: for me the golden age of the show was when Billy West was on. Case in point: Hill Street Jews.
That one makes me laugh every time.
I just realized something.
Talk about a coincidence. The time I emailed Ian Punnet? I asked him if he could invite G. Gordon Liddy on Coast to Coast AM.
This was in response to him having Saint John Hunt (E. Howard Hunt's son) on the show and playing some recently released tapes of his father's memoirs. I wanted to see if Liddy's recollection matched Hunt's side of the story.
Punnet basically said that Liddy was on an alltogether different network and that the brass at his company would probably be scared of him.
That's interesting. I know that the radio business is pretty cut-throat, so the response doesn't shock me. Thanks for the link...I will check it out later.
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