Broadcasting legend and interviewer extraordinaire Larry King passed away Saturday, January 23rd at the age of 87. An emotional Frank Morano, host of The Other Side of Midnight on WABC, paid tribute to King during his opening monologue on Monday, saying King’s death “Marks the end of an era in broadcasting”.
Morano began his tribute by discussing King’s impact on the world of broadcasting.
“I don’t really have the vocabulary to express my deep sadness at the passing of Larry King,” Morano said. “I can’t begin to describe the impact that he has had on the world of radio, cable news and broadcasting in general. Watching his work, sometimes he would make you laugh, sometimes he would make you cry, sometimes he would surprise you and then sometimes he would make you scratch your head. But that was Larry. Because of that, it is a struggle to find what made Larry King so great. I have come to the conclusion that it wasn’t one thing, but a combination of many, many things.”
Morano adds that King had many similarities with another television icon, Alex Trebek.
“There are a lot of people in television or radio that can find success for a moment,” Morano said. “But to have longevity and be on the air for literal decades, you have to be relatable to audiences. You have to be ‘just a regular guy from the neighborhood’. You have to be curious and you have to be humble. Both Larry and Alex had those qualities and that’s why people loved them.”
While Morano does compare King to Trebek, he said it was King’s differences from other broadcasters that set him apart.
“Let’s be honest. Larry King was no Ken Doll,” he said. “He would wear those suspenders that nobody else would think about wearing. He didn’t look like the picture of somebody you thought was supposed to be on TV. He did not ask the same erudite questions that everyone else was asking. No, Larry King was different and that’s what made him so special.”
Morano closes his monologue by crediting King with shaping the modern news format, saying that his death leaves a void in the world of broadcasting,
“I didn’t know Larry personally aside from meeting him a couple of times for about ten seconds, but I feel like I lost a friend,” Morano said. “He was one of the people that helped define and create modern day cable news and call-in radio formats. That era has closed with his passing. That is really sad.”
Later in his program, Morano interviewed King’s producer Tammy Haddad. Morano also invited listeners to call in and share their memories of King throughout the program. In addition, Morano played some rare clips of King from his career, but stopped short of devoting the entire four hour show to him because, “I don’t think Larry would have wanted it that way”.
Jacob Conley writes about news/talk radio BNM. He can be found on Twitter @GWUJake or reach him by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jay Weber: Media ‘Covering’ For Biden, Democrats On Border Crisis
“Biden and the Democrats are allowing it to happen. Allowing it! And the news media covers for them.”
Many conservative commentators have maligned the interview President Joe Biden conducted with Scott Pelley of 60 Minutes last Sunday, and have claimed he got a “pass” on the nation’s southern border. 1130 WISN host Jay Weber can be added to that list.
“Trust me, if a Republican was president, dozens of terrorists roaming America because of the president — intentionally — reopened the borders, it would be a huge deal and a relentless obsession by the news media,” Weber said. “Biden and the Democrats are allowing it to happen. Allowing it! And the news media covers for them.”
Weber pointed out a perceived hypocrisy in liberal circles, as many have claimed Governor Ron DeSantis (R-FL) is guilty of kidnapping after sending illegal immigrants to Martha’s Vineyard, MA, but are ok allowing the southern border to remain open.
He continued by pointing out the southern border’s role in national security, saying it took only 13 people to attack America on 9/11.
Dan Mandis: There’s A Reason Greg Gutfeld Is Winning Late-Night Competition
“There are consequences for doing that. It is now well known that Greg Gutfeld, over there on Fox News, is beating the snot out of Stephen Colbert.”
After playing a recent clip from The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, Mandis said it was the chief reason why network shows are losing to Gutfeld. In the clip, Colbert’s audience cheers when the host brings up a Texas sheriff opening an investigation into the actions of Governor Ron DeSantis (R-FL) for shipping illegal immigrants to Martha’s Vineyard, MA. Colbert called DeSantis “a body builder who skips head day” in his monologue, and Mandis found the comments offensive. He claimed shows on ABC, NBC, CBS, and FOX should be a place for all viewers, not just members of the “progressive left”.
“To me, Colbert’s show should be on CNN or MSNBC to cater to the left,” Mandis said. “But again, he’s on the network where he should be welcoming for all. There are consequences for doing that. It is now well known that Greg Gutfeld, over there on Fox News, is beating the snot out of Stephen Colbert. I know what you’re thinking. ‘Isn’t Gutfeld blowing off half of America?’ Perhaps, but he’s on Fox News, where people know what they’re going to get.”
Mandis then pointed out the difference in Gutfeld’s approach compared to Colbert’s, saying Gutfeld’s panel approach is easier to digest than Colbert’s solo monologue followed by celebrity interviews.
Will Dahlberg New GM For WBHM
“I look forward to working with our team, our listeners and our supporters in the weeks and years ahead to put more ‘public’ in public media by better serving all our communities.”
WBHM, the news/talk station owned by the University of Alabama at Birmingham, has named Will Dahlberg as its new Executive Director and General Manager.
“Working at WBHM for the past decade has been the highlight of my professional career, and I am honored to serve as executive director,” Dahlberg said. “I appreciate the search committee’s confidence in my abilities to lead this amazing station and the talented and diverse team that works hard to serve our community. I am so grateful to the amazing WBHM team for their time, support and patience during my time as interim and throughout this search. I am also grateful to the many people at UAB who continue to support WBHM’s important mission.”
He also added how important WBHM has been, and will continue to be to the greater Birmingham communitiy.
“WBHM has done an excellent job as a public radio station since 1976, but it is important that we continue to strive to do more,” Dahlberg continued. “I look forward to working with our team, our listeners and our supporters in the weeks and years ahead to put more ‘public’ in public media by better serving all our communities. As Birmingham evolves, so should its public radio station, and I can’t wait for us to do that together.”
Dahlberg has previously worked as the Deputy Director and Membership Manager for the station. He has been the interim executive director since mid-2021.
“Will has more than a decade of experience at WBHM in a range of roles, including 15 months as interim executive director, and his passion for public radio and the people it serves is evident in everything he does,” said UAB Chief Communications Officer Jim Bakken. “WBHM provides an invaluable service to the Birmingham community and beyond, and Will’s commitment and vision will lead the station in delivering on its mission.”
Garrett Searight is the Editor of Barrett Sports Media and Barrett News Media. He previously was the Program Director and Afternoon Co-Host on 93.1 The Fan in Lima, OH. He is also a play-by-play announcer for TV and Radio broadcasts in Western Ohio.