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Airwaves: November 25, 2005

Giving Thanks

All too often it is easy to get cynical. To think about what is bad instead of what is good. But the holidays are a good time to reflect on what is good, and in the spirit of Thanksgiving, I would like to give some thanks to my friends in radio.

I am thankful for KZLA, for showing me that good radio can still be done in this era of conglomerate radio. The presentation is excellent, production is excellent, and there isn't a bad DJ on the whole station. KZLA sounds like good top-40 stations of the past, and they are the sole reason I like country music.

I am thankful for KFI, for entertaining me in the morning with Handel on the News and in the afternoon with Dr. laura and John and Ken. Yes, Dr. Laura. Many people could use her good sense, even when she is harsh.

I am thankful for KLOS for continuing to put out lineup of quality. Good music variety, great personalities. Rita Wilde is among the best programmers in the country.

I am thankful for Peter Tilden, who on KZLA has one of the best morning shows anywhere. You can listen with the kids hear good, clean humor. Tilden has been on a few stations in the past, but this is his best gig yet.

I am thankful for Don Barrett and his web site. I am a radio junkie, and Don has the stuff: inside information and in-depth stories about radio personalities and behind-the-scenes people from all walks of Los Angeles radio.

I am thankful to be able to live in Southern California, where we have access to more radio stations than most of the rest of the world. On a clear day get stations from Los Angeles, Riverside, San Diego and Ventura. Sure it's not always the best ... but it's a choice that most people never get.

I am thankful for satellite radio, for giving me song variety that most stations no longer are willing to play. Is it as good as local radio? Heck no. But it is still good.

I am thankful for my wife, Jean, for putting up with me and my radio weirdness. OK, to be honest I'm just weird. But my radio weirdness is over the top. Ask her if I occasionally announce songs as we drive somewhere (I do). Even my kids will occasionally mention KHJ. I wonder where they learned that? ...

I am thankful that my editor and the Daily Breeze allow me to write about radio in ways that I want to write. This column covers everything from new technology to new programs, current personalities to those who have retired. The freedom to cover something I love in a way I want to do is a wonderful feeling.

I know that I have missed many of the wonderful people who make radio such a magical medium. To the many people who work to make our lives better through radio, I thank you. But I would be remiss if I didn't mention one more: I am especially thankful to you for reading this column for the past eighteen years. For giving me your input, your ideas, your suggestions, and your complaints. I hope that I never betray your trust.


Copyright © 2005 Richard Wagoner and The Copley Press.

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