Leykis' 'New Normal' Launches First Original Show
May 12, 2010 at 10:11 AM (PT)
TOM LEYKIS has formally launched his new company THE NEW NORMAL with its first original content, the "GARY AND DINO SHOW," a podcast featuring his former producers GARY ZABRANSKY and DEAN DIMILIO, regulars on LEYKIS' former CBS RADIO/WESTWOOD ONE show. The new show, which LEYKIS said he would "love to see on as many platforms as possible," is the first in what LEYKIS promises will be a series of audio content produced to be distributed across several media platforms.
"What we're doing," LEYKIS told ALL ACCESS, "is to treat audio content as platform agnostic, rather than creating a radio show, or a streaming show on the Internet, or a podcast." The content, he said, may or may not be ultimately used as broadcast radio programming, but will take various forms, from podcasting to live streaming to on-demand streaming, for which he will use social media (25,000 FACEBOOK "fans," 16,000 MYSPACE users, and 800 TWITTER followers) to send clickable links that will immediately launch the content.
We are not waiting for the consent or approval of conglomerates or certain opinionated or dictatorial local management types. No longer will some guy in New York or San Antonio or anywhere else keep you from hearing exactly what you want to hear
LEYKIS himself remains, other than his existing radio and streaming wine show "THE TASTING ROOM," on the sidelines regarding his "regular" talk show due to his being under contract to CBS RADIO, but he plans to eventually offer his own content aftert he conclusion of that deal. In the meantime, he says, "we are talking to people who currently do radio and television shows who have never done Internet-specific content" about creating programming for THE NEW NORMAL.
The new initiative has been in the works for some time, LEYKIS said, but was delayed because "ee spent time to deal with the backend to make sure we had enough bandwidth" for full 128kb audio. "It took a long time to figure out how to do this economically and with the right amount of bandwidth." The service will, he added, ultimately offer live streams.
In the site's mission statement, LEYKIS asserts, "In this economy, big companies can’t afford to take the chances we are taking. The way we see it, THE NEW NORMAL has no choice but to be different. In short, THE NEW NORMAL is about new and daring content guided by the input of people like you, presented on every possible device and medium there is. We will not be 'playing what we want.' We will be playing (and doing) what YOU want. The revolution won’t be televised, and it certainly won’t be heard on radio stations with 'a bigger mix and a better variety.' With your help, it just might be heard right here."
The mission statement also says that the company wants "to partner with traditional terrestrial radio stations whenever it makes sense, but we are not waiting for the consent or approval of conglomerates or certain opinionated or dictatorial local management types. No longer will some guy in NEW YORK or SAN ANTONIO or anywhere else keep you from hearing exactly what you want to hear. If radio isn’t ready for what we’re doing, we’ll bring it to you right here anyway. We offer reasonably priced advertising for those businesses big and small who want to test the reach of the exciting new media into which we’re delving."
LEYKIS, ZABRANSKY and DEMILIO are being joined in the venture by engineer ART WEBB and veteran affiliatre relations executive LIZ LAUD, who worked with LEYKIS and crew in the early days of the syndicated show when she was with WESTWOOD ONE, as Dir./Affiliate Relations for terrestrial radio.
LEYKIS has put out a call for software developers to help develop the site and add mobile capabilities, and is also looking for new talent, especially, for example, "the 17-year-old who does his own content (an existing, successful podcast) who has a following but wants the bandwidth and the platform." Reach TOM at email@example.com.