Howard Has Stern Reaction To Infinity Plans
October 26, 2005 at 11:57 AM (PT)
HOWARD STERN's reaction to INFINITY's plans to replace him were predictably angry and dismissive, but he also managed to get three key facts of the situation wrong on WEDNESDAY's show.
STERN's opening segment blasted the company and WXRK (92.3 K-ROCK)/NEW YORK GM TOM CHIUSANO for lying to him and claimed that his show had been dropped, against CHIUSANO and the company's word, in SACRAMENTO and other markets after yesterday's announcements. After spending considerable time ripping INFINITY chief JOEL HOLLANDER, CHIUSANO and whoever told the GM that STERN would not be dropped anywhere, a caller from SACRAMENTO informed him that the show was airing as usual on the former KHWD, which flipped to JACK-FM as KQJK but which will carry STERN's show until its DECEMBER 16 conclusion on terrestrial radio. STERN apologized to CHIUSANO for the rant, blamed on misinformation obtained by an intern calling the SACRAMENTO station.
a scummy move... unbelievable in its callousness
Later in the show, STERN lamented the dropping of the Rock format and firing of staff at WBCN/BOSTON (which is not changing format and did not fire its staff; STERN later hurriedly corrected the story before going to a commercial break) and WYSP/PHILADELPHIA (which retained music after 7p and has not fired the staff, as afternoon host KIDD CHRIS informed STERN on the air). STERN characterized the changes in format and firing of staff (which he called "Black TUESDAY") "a scummy move... unbelievable in its callousness"; "they destroyed these music formats and took them off the air... because I'm leaving," STERN asserted.
Among the stations carrying STERN, only WXRK, which will flip to Talk in JANUARY, and KPLN/SAN DIEGO (long rumored to be dropping its Classic Rock format) dropped all of its weekday music programming and staff, and KHWD flipped to the JACK format and fired its on-air staff; the other STERN affiliates taking on the "FREE FM" name were already doing some form of FM Talk under different slogans.
During the show, STERN assailed HOLLANDER and Pres. of Programming ROB BARNETT for their comments at the TUESDAY press conference, especially HOLLANDER's post-BEETLEJUICE-prank-call comment that INFINITY will not offer "24 hour channels of people farting and people with mental illnesses," STERN pointing out that INFINITY has made a lot of money from "those freaks" over the years. STERN ripped HOLLANDER's assertion that DAVID LEE ROTH had "gone toe-to-toe" with STERN in their on-air interview (STERN noted that "it wasn't a fight") and objected to HOLLANDER's comments about STERN's falling ratings, quoting his agent DON BUCHWALD's notes on the SUMMER NEW YORK ARBITRON book as evidence.
STERN will host a camera crew from CBS' "60 MINUTES" in the studio during THURSDAY's show; the newsmagazine is preparing a piece on STERN as he moves to SIRIUS SATELLITE RADIO at the end of the year.