Monday, December 12, 2005

Howard Stern and satellite radio...

First of all, I'm a bit of a radiophile. I really love good radio.

That being said, there isn't much good radio here in western Kentucky. In fact, there isn't any good radio at all. That is except for good old satellite radio like XM or Sirius. Piccu and I have XM radio which is beyond great. I love my XM radio as much or more than Piccu and Merlin love their DVR/TiVos.

Dec. 16 will also be the last day of Howard Stern's career as a "terrestrial" radio personality. Beginning Jan. 9 or so he'll be on Sirius satellite radio and in the article linked in the title, he's already coming up with insanely over the top ideas. On satellite radio he has no boundaries. Anything and everything will go and Sirius increased it's subscriptions from about 600,000 to 2.2 million since the announcement of Stern's move.

I haven't heard much of Sirius, but I dig some of their radios and they have some interesting looking shows, but when Piccu and I got in with XM it was because XM had the foot hold and was the smarter choice. Sirius has too many channels of just one artist. If I want to hear all Rolling Stones or all Tupac I'll listen to their CDs. Even though I have no Tupac CDs... Not that there's anything wrong with that.

The problem I have with Stern is the same problem I have with XM's Opie and Anthony. Opie and Anthony were fired from terrestrial radio because of the wild things they did on their morning talk show. I think broadcasting two people having sex in a church confessional or something did them in.

Either way, XM put O&A on their own channel and if you wanted that channel it was going to cost you an extra $2.95 or something. I'm going to say that very few people wanted to pay the extra fee. Then XM moved O&A to a channel called High Voltage and I believe they conveniently raised their subscription fees from $9.95 to $12.95 thinking that no one would notice and acted like they were doing us a favor.

Until now, you could hear O&A 24-7 with the live show in the morning and replays all day. Now they've added Ron & Fez which I've not listened to as of yet.

I listen to the Monsters in the Morning on Extreme 152. The Monsters are based in Orlando and syndicated on one other station. They are funny and have had a lot of drama on the show in that one of their members got mad and bailed on the show, but moved to another show since she had a contract with the station. Anyway, all of the remaining Monsters hate her now, but the show is funny because they just beat on each other, talk and let ignorant rednecks call in.

I've listened to Stern before and he's horrible. It's 6 hours of whatever he talked about in the first hour mixed in with making fun of hookers and porn stars. As if they had a wonderful childhood and when they graduated with honors from college they decided the sex-trade was for them. Then Stern will sometimes pick on a celebrity and pound on them with the same jokes for the entire show as it the jokes are just as fresh at 11 a.m. as they were when he came up with them at 5 a.m.

O&A is pretty much like that, but they curse so much it really takes away from the show since they are only on XM. I've always thought that bleeps and complete dumps were more funny than hearing the actual word. But they just do crazy over the top stuff and curse all of the time. So it's not appealing to me.

That's why I would rather listen to the Monsters. They are on satellite radio, but they still risk getting thrown off of Clear Channel. And since they are a crew of about 7 people, some of which are making at least $100,000, I'm thinking that they don't want to rock the boat. In fact, all of Extreme 152 on XM is shows from terrestrial stations. The Monsters, Tony Kornheiser, Lex & Terry (thanks XM for moving G. Gordon Liddy to Ask), then the Phillips Phile, Phil Hendrie, Davie Lawrence and John & Jeff. I'm not a big fan of Hendrie, but you can listen to Extreme all day long and have a blast.

Good talk radio is nonexistent outside of major cities and I like the radio for music too. Sure you can listen to your own CDs but the radio turns you on to other music and with XM, since you can see the band name and song title, you might find a song that you liked, but never knew who played it.

Then you make your way to iTunes and download that sucker. But that's for another time.

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