Dear Indie 103.1,
Here’s a little tip for you. If you are going to mention in an e-mail that Joe Escalante is going to be the new morning show host and you want it to stay a secret, you might want to do two things. One, BCC the mailing list and Two, not send it to people who are going to forward it to us with a note saying:
“Hey Blogging.la – Got this today in my work email… I’m still not putting Indie 103.1 back on my radio dial.. Michael Steele can go suck a big fat corporate d**k. Let the world know!! p.s. Note the anti-choice thing at the end of the wikipedia profile.”
This is especially true if the list of people you are CCing is chock full of @infinitybroadcasting.com, @abc.com, @clearchannel.com, @kdka.com and about a hundred other media entities e-mail addresses. And even more so when the e-mail itself has cell phone numbers and studios and hot lines.
Anyway, all that aside, obviously we were just forwarded an e-mail referencing a phone interview with Melora Hardin that will probably be happening next Thursday, May 11th. Personal and Work e-mail addresess and phone numbers removed, here’s the meat of it:
To: so many e-mails I don’t even know what to do about it.
Subject: Re: Melora Hardin-“The Office” Marsha
…please put Indie 1031.1-L.A. on the phone schedule for Melora Hardin…here’s the info….fyi….this is a new morning show host and they aren’t making the announcement ’til Fri. so mum’s the word…thanks. Gwen
Station: KDLD/KDLE Indie 103.1 Los Angeles
Host: Joe Escalante Show
Hot Line: 323 xxx-xxxx
back-up # 323 xxx-xxxx
Either Joe or his producer Mike will answer the phone Interview will run live or within 30 minutes of taping Joe’s asst. is Stacey…cell # 323 xxx-xxxx”
For what it’s worth Joe’s legal advice show as actually pretty entertaining (however the standard “oh I totally have the answer to your question, what you are going to do is go to my website and check out…” answer is getting a touch old), but Indie spending how many weeks now before moving one of their current DJs into the morning slot doesn’t lend a whole lot of credibility to the “Dicky was fired because of ratings” story, and makes the Dicky’s “they got pissed and fired me” version seem a lot more believable.
OK, this is the craziest thing I’ve heard all day. Dave from Little Radio (where BarCamp was hosted) just posted a comment on this entry about Shepard Fairey hosting a show on Indie 103 stating that he just received a nastygram from Indie 103‘s lawyers about his logo saying it looked too much like theirs. Here’s the trick, Shepard designed them both. Here’s his full comment:
So guys, INDIE is threatening to sue me. I own indie103.com, which was originally a stab at Clear Channel’s illegal involvement with Indie. This is a paragraph from the certified letter I got:
“We have also discovered that Little Radio is using a logo or design mark that copies the design mark that is used by our client for it’s INDIE 103 radio station. Little Radio’s use of it’s confusingly similar logo aggravates the confusion of the public caused by your blatant infringement of our clients INDIE 103 mark. This use also illustrates Little Radio’s bad faith in registering and using indie103.com domain name”.
As I’ve said all along, if Mark S. or anyone from Indie would have emailed or asked for the domain, I would’ve given to them at any time. I seriously could care less about it. I’m happy to give them the domain, though I think it’s total bullshit that they feel the need to strongarm me with threatening letters from lawyers in Chicago. Way to spend money guys!
As far as the logo dispute goes, considering that Shepard Fairey created both logos, and especially since Shepard was given no direction from me or anyone @ Little Radio about how the logo should look. INDIE 103 is threatening to sue me, basically, because Shepard stole from Shepard?? They should look at Shepard’s work and take note of his “style” not to be confused with their “mark”
They’ve given me till Friday to “cease” the use of my logo. Yea, okay.
LA’s Only True Independent, My Ass.
KPCC is running a special series discussing the Los Angeles River, and you can listen to it on their site:
When you think of the Los Angeles River, what images come to mind? Concrete? Maybe trash? Dirty water? When some people look at the river, they see willows and waterfowl… and they envision a future where the LA River is at the center of a greener city. All this week, KPCC’s environmental reporter, Ilsa Setziol, explores the dreams — and realities — of revitalizing the Los Angeles River.
[via Echo_29 on the LA River Group]
I’m getting the feeling this Indie 103.1 story is far from over. I just work up to an e-mail from one of the people who helped talk Caryn & I into moving to LA, Shepard Fairey saying he’s guest hosting the morning show on Indie 103.1 this morning. His design firm did the branding for Indie so him being on the station isn’t surprising, but if Dicky Barrett was fired for not jiving with the station’s background right wing politics and forced playlists, then this is a bit shocking. I’ve been listening live via iTunes and so far he’s talked about Bush, the war, Delay stepping down, and played a crap load of music that I’m certain isn’t on the station mandated playlist of any radio station in the country. The plot thickens…
UPDATE: I asked Shepard how it all went and if he had any inside take on the situation after being there, he says…
“As far as Indie’s politics go, they have my anti-Bush print on the wall in there. They let Steve Jones and Henry Rollins say and play anything they want to. From what I heard, Dickie’s show had bad ratings from the start and he was not open to constructive criticism about how to improve them. Bottom line… if ratings are good, the DJ’s can get away with whatever they want. I was a fan of the Bosstones back when I lived in Providence and I have no problem with Dicky. I think Dicky is embarrassed and is trying to spin the situation as if Indie is not “PUNK” enough. Every story has two sides but the station has been cool to me and I base my opinions on experience, not gossip. I told them that the stuff I would play would be the songs that helped build their format. They asked for no further specifics. Once I was there, several of my song choices were already on their list to be played. I let them play those and a few new songs for younger listeners that I was not familiar with, and I chose the others. It was easy going.”
The past week or so has found many of us here making several posts about Dickey Barrett and his abrupt replacement on the Mighty Morning Show. Needless to say I’m not psyched about it. Yesterday the LA Weekly chimed in on the subject and pours more gasoline on the “this is messed up” fire:
Barrett says that he was prepared to take his firing quietly, but that Girocco’s statement to Hits forced his hand. Last Friday, his publicist released a typo-riddled statement in which Barrett makes a number of strong accusations, including — ouch! — that he was scolded for complaining on-air about a Morrissey single. Barrett says he was told to “say the time and call letters till your [sic] blue in the face,” and he also tells the Weekly that Indie forced him to use a playlist in recent months (a rule not applied to some other celeb DJs at Indie).
Most troubling, he accuses Indie of de facto censorship at the hands of Steele and Girocco. Barrett says the two demanded approval for all his guests, and fired him the same day he held an “unauthorized” pro-choice discussion on his show with a South Dakota radio host. (“Dawn Girocco [is] Dick Cheney, Steele is George Bush,” says Barrett in the release.)
Further complicating matters, no one at Indie will discuss the matter, including Girocco, beyond the usual “we wish him the best of luck” formalities.
Maybe it’s just me, but Michael Steele’s email reply saying “If you need to find a new choice in mornings, that’s cool. Do what you need to do, we did” doesn’t quite come across as “best of luck formalities” to me.
Last month I posted about how The Mighty Morning Show on Indie 103.1 was the best morning radio show in LA. Last week it disappeared off the air with no explanation of what happened. The station said that Dicky quit to focus on the Kimmel show fulltime but that sounded lie a huge pile of crap. Turns out, it was. This morning LA Voice has a press release from Dicky explaining exactly what happened and why he was fired.
“The man hired to ”coach” me “trying to get the show to the next level” Dan Kieley said “Dicky is a true talent and a radio star” and ”it’s a great Morning Show”
I was fired for being unwilling to be, in Dawn Girocco’s words ”more mainstream” It was a great morning show. It is unfair to let people think I walked away to put more work into loudly reading twenty to thirty words a night on Jimmy’s T.V. show. I worked hard on the Mighty Morning Show. I along with Stacey, Chuck, and Liz, built and grew it to what it was. You could count on it (for the most part) to provide you with interesting, compelling content and better music then any other show on the air in the morning.”
There’s also some insight into the constant Clear Channel or not discussions surrounding the station:
“At that point the FCC said Clear Channel who operated Indie 103.1 out of the Entravision offices could no longer do so – All business ties on paper we’re severed – It became a full Entravision property – But the hard right leaning Clear Channel program director and station manager (along with a lot of the behind the scenes technical employees) were already firmly in place – It is in Clear Channel’s best interest that Indie 103.1 exist”
Complaints can be directed to Michael Steele (program director) at [email protected] or give him a ring 877.900.1031
And Dicky – if you want to start podcasting The Might Metroblogging Show just say the world and we’ll hook you up!
UPDATE: From the comments, Chris wrote and and received a reply from [email protected] that said:
Keep listening…Jonesy’s not going anywhere. If you need to find a new choice in mornings, that’s cool. Do what you need to do, we did.
Sent via BlackBerry from EarthLink Wireless.
So there you have it, doesn’t sound like he’s sticking to the “Dicky quit” story any longer does it?