Geo’s Media Blog. An inside look at Music Movies Radio & Life. (Classy) 7/23/18

Leaving Fairbanks Broadcasting to try my hand at consulting was a very scary thing to do, and I remember thinking, “Hey, if I’m gonna starve to death maybe I should do it where I wouldn’t freeze to death first.”Luckily the Shadek family who owned KOGO/KPRI in San Diego became my first client.
I loved San Diego and I also loved the fact that the Shadek’s owned a radio station in San Antonio where I could launch my new format, “Class FM.” The concept was modeled after KVIL which was extremely successful in Dallas as it was once again in Palm Beach at WRMF. However, I needed to get some ratings without Ron Chapman or Fairbanks being involved if I had any hope of getting this consulting thing going. With a little help from Reid Reker who was of my ops manager at KOGO and a lot of help from Bill Gardner,(pictured on the billboard) we launched America’s first “Class FM.” Bill who we lured out of Chicago with V/P stripes had been through this with me once before in Dallas, so it didn’t take him and his crew long to blow San Antonio away. Then Jim West agreed to represent me but he was so so good that immediately I needed a lot of help. Can you spell oversold?
Back in San Diego, Reid and I were doing another radio experiment on KOGO called the “Radio Magazine” which I think would work today. However, even though we got it up almost to a 5 share, it took an enormous amount of time and creativity but we were running out of time, Class FM was on fire. Meanwhile, across the hall was KPRI, an AOR station that was getting soundly beaten by KGB. Knowing that good people are always the answer, I quickly brought in Buster Bodine and Don Michael Gerrard who had both worked with me at WNAP in Indy. Like with Bill Gardner, it’s so much easier to do a project with people who have already know what you want. So after making Buster the program director, we tightened up the music and began to launch some of the promotions that we’d done together back at the Buzzard.
As I look back on it now, I think that the main reason we succeeded with KPRI, was probably because we didn’t give a damn. Buster was putting his successful Voice-Over business together and Reid and I were very busy with “Class.” None of us were worried about putting food on the table so we just ended up just having a lotta fun with KPRI and doing a lot of crazy things on the air.
Surprise, surprise, wouldn’t you know it, we beat the unbeatable KGB. This resulted in a visit Ed Shadek, the company’s president who said, “George, thank you so much for beating KGB, I’ve always hated the music we play but I just couldn’t walk away from it a loser. However, thanks to you, I can now walk away from it a winner, so now I need you to replace that sh*t music we’re now playing with some of that classy stuff from San Antonio?”

GEO’S LIFE-LINERS.

 

TRAVEL.
Of all the places I’ve been, Hawaii is still my favorite. Now if I could ever figure out how to get there by train, you’d never see or hear from me again.

I don’t know why I’m such a train freak, but no matter how long it takes me to get somewhere, I still get there too quick.

 

Remember when we used to get dressed up to get on an airplane

 

POLITICAL & POLITICALLY INCORRECT.

I hear lots of Trump bashing coming out of Canada but very little about Trudeau. What’s up with that?

Speaking of Canada, I remember when God Save The Queen used to be played at the end of the movie. Well, that’s gone, maybe it’s time for our anthem to also disappear from some events. Who decides where it gets played anyway?

So how the f*ck did Jann Wenner who can’t sing, dance, or play a musical instrument become powerful enough to decide who goes into the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame. Even more importantly he also decides who doesn’t. Shouldn’t the fans, the artists, and Dee-Jays decide?

Let’s see if I have this straight, The Philadelphia Eagles have the right to diss the presidential office, but the president doesn’t have the right to diss them?
 
People who make a difference should be invited to the White House not overpaid athletes and movie stars. They don’t make a difference.
 
So I wonder what the Jews, Irish, and Chinese, who were also slaves, think about the blacks getting all the attention about it?
 
How come even though we have all this debt there is no concern about us running out of welfare money?
 
Do thugs of any race or religion deserve any respect or rights?
 
Being a good athlete does not make you a good human being.

Somebody is getting rich off these hundreds of charities but it sure ain’t the poor.

LOVE & MARRIAGE.
Love is a word that should be used often but not overused.

Pro athletes and beautiful women get about the same amount of time. Twenty years.

Women aren’t as innocent as they think they appear to be.

The only women I agree with about women’s rights are my daughters.

Any beautiful woman can bring any meeting to a halt without saying a word.

YESTERDAY.
A few of the things that are disappearing from our lives are stores in the Mall, DVDs, CDs, maps, books, safety, the ringing of landline phones, and the sound of car horns when the New Yorkers finally go home.

Only Joe Coker did the covers better than the originals.

Isn’t it weird that when the groups who are touring today had hit records, you could see them for five bucks but now it costs hundreds and they don’t have any hits now?

INSPIRATIONAL.
To live your life any way you want to is the ultimate success.

Hey, the Red Sox still have the best record in baseball with 70 wins.

Intelligent people reasonably informed seldom disagree.

Wouldn’t pro hockey be fun if there were pro hockey teams all over the world and you could only play for your country? The Stanley Cup would come down to continent against continent. Whew!

Sometimes I put my topics and Life-Liners on Facebook first to see if they get any traction.

My Good friend Gordon Zlot who owns KZST in Santa Rosa California and is being inducted into the Bay Area Broadcasters Hall Of Fame. Congrats Gordon, well deserved.

#Geo’sLifeLiner Comments about #Trump #JannWenner #Trudeau and other politically incorrect stuff are above. #Geo’sLifeLiners about other things plus a sneak peek at an upcoming Blog or two @ GeorgeJohns.com. On Twitter@GeoOfTheRadio. Sharing and commenting is appreciated.

 

14 thoughts on “Geo’s Media Blog. An inside look at Music Movies Radio & Life. (Classy) 7/23/18

  1. George, I learned more about great radio from you in a year and a half at KOGO than in the 20 years before you. Wish we could have kept going. Your mentoring led to 14 years of success in Tampa Bay. My thanks, forever.

    • Thank you for your kind words Bob, but it had a lot more to do with you than me. You gave me permission to coach you, most of the air talent today don’t realize that they need coaching. It’s costing them money.

  2. I loved the Class FM format. I listened to it in Wichita on KLZS. It played a lot of currents and recurrents, and didn’t go to.old, but wasn’t a CHR. I really liked the concept.

  3. George, I love ya man…..but as I see this weekly, I am bemused by your always referencing Canada and Fairbanks. Great stories those but what about KFROG and the stuff Joe asked you to do? Every once in a while I see a reference to Joe and Betsy but KFROG was also a big success….Joe w’ the investment $ and yours truly executing the plan…..I was there for 16 years, with Amaturo, American Radio and CBS and many of the folks I put in place are still there today. Scott of The Frogmen in the Morning, Leslie Bischoff the Marketing/Promotions gal, Michael Valenzuela, a sales guy I hired from XEROX who is Entercom’s Market Manager today and 3 or 4 AE’s still selling.
    You have had a hand in all of that….ever think of a column on KFRG/KXFG/KVFG/KEZN? They deserve some props…..just my view.

    • Ahh, but I do have Frog stories, Tom, like your new bride saying, “Tom, I can’t believe that you live this close to Disneyland (50 miles) and you’re not there every day? Also, how you and I both know that he who has the best-looking ladies on their arm at a Malibu party, owns the party and we killed it that night. And, of course, you being the gentleman you are, how you graciously carried a fair maiden’s doggy bag for her into an exclusive club that caused some disparaging looks from the bouncers. Not to mention helping her bring a few groceries up to her apartment later that evening. The Muses give me this stuff Tom, but they do it chronologically so I’m not at the Frog days yet but I will be. Buckle up!

  4. KZZY to KLLS in San Antonio. I didn’t know what greatness I was with in the Alamo City. Thanks George!

  5. George, Funny thing between Canada and the USA many Canadians think it is wrong for Trump to want to have the Southern border secure from Latinos crossing illegally into the USA BUT they are also pissed that Trudeau is allowing/encouraging illegal immigrants flowing across the border at Champlain NY into Quebec “OTTAWA – Canadian officials in Nigeria are working with the U.S. on developing tools to flag Nigerians applying for U.S. visas who may be at “high risk” of crossing illegally into Canada across the U.S. border.
    So far this year, the majority of illegal migrants arriving in Canada are Nigerians who have recently been issued U.S. travel visas.”
    Canada has become the Nation of double standard.

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