Tuesday, April 28, 2009

We're going home now. And by the way, you're fired.

The two guys in the photo with me are Marty Allen and Paul Rado, until yesterday producers of the Mike Trivisonno show on WTAM/1100. I say until yesterday because right around 5:00, as the Clear Channel suits were getting ready to go home, the two were called into the office and told that their services were not needed anymore.

Job insecurity is pretty much the nature of the beast in media nowadays. You give the company your best for many years and they show you the door. Clear Channel pretty much became the Walmart of radio a number of years ago when they, and other large companies, bought radio stations like they were going out of style. Each company then put all their local properties in one location and started sharing services, such as news, traffic, and weather. They also started voice tracking their music shows, mostly away from morning and afternoon drive. This made many jobs obsolete and many folks who once had dreams of making a name for themselves in this medium were shown the door. And others, who had made a name for themselves, were shown the door. I will say it again, thank God for the small number of locally owned and operated media companies still around

Clear Channel and others have had some very heartless ways of downsizing. They had cut over a thousand jobs on inaguration day when the nation was focusing on the events in Washington. But the unkindest cuts in this, and any industry, came during the holidays when people were told their services were no longer needed. Imagine being escorted out of the building while listening to Burl Ives singing "Have a Holly Jolly Christmas."

It stinks to have friends lose their jobs. But as Petula Clark once sang "Its a sign of the times."


Karen said...

There must've been a world wide meeting on this because my employers do the same thing when they're letting someone go. They wait until 4:55, call em in and let em go! Those of us still fortunate enough to have a job consider ourselves lucky I guess.

Jen said...

This stinks!
Best of luck to them in finding new employment.

wzzp said...

Paul and Marty, you are both a class act, professional to the end, and REAL. Bless you both, and take on the world with your gifts!

Pigeon said...

One thing I noticed about Clear channel stations is that they tend to have cookie cutter play lists. Gone are the days when djays program their own music. I prefer the stations who are not ownd by a massive corperation.

74WIXYgrad said...

I also got word this morning that four more on air personalities got their walking papers from CC. I will let Ohio Media Watch report the names before I post, out of respect.

Anonymous said...

The days of DJs picking their own music ended sometime in the early 80s. Radio has been dead for some time and Clear Channel is just looking to get rid of anybody at this point making over $7 an hour. How long before Bob Frantz is out the door at WTAM?

JPF Law said...

Paul, Marty:

Good luck in your next endeavor. Life is a wheel, and we always come back around to the top.

Talent and experience are too expensive for radio "management" to deal with now. Sad state of affairs, indeed.

You guys have fought more battles in Cleveland than CC's managers ever knew existed.

Think of it this way: now, you can look in from the outside and shake your head at what the company is doing (or not doing).

If you need any help, let me know.

Johnny Morgan

Anonymous said...

To all,

Thank you for your well wishes. (if you well wished us)

I was taught that when someone says something negative about you it'll only hurt you if you let it hurt you.
I'm not reacting to the dismissal as a negative, them saying I'm not good enough to be on radio. I'm going to treat it as an opportunity to go somewhere else and continue entertaining the radio or TV audience in a credible and informative way. But this time from in front.

Ever since elementary school I've been standing in front of my peers and entertaining them. I plan on continuing that. I have no choice. It's what I do.

I also feel that Marty Allen and I are affordable to most stations... as long as we don't work for food.

Paul Rado

Matt Wardlaw said...

I went to broadcasting school with Rado, and later ended up in the same building with him when Clear Channel put all of the stations in one building.

Rado is one of the greatest dudes that you'll meet in this biz, as demonstrated by his humble reply above.

Marty Allen is in the same category as well - I didn't know him as well as Paul, but he was always cool to me.

I hate to see the blog posts, Twitter messages, and Facebook status updates delivering the news that more friends and talented broadcasters have lost their jobs.

Fortunately for Paul and Marty, being cut out of the Clear Channel system is one of the best things that can happen to them.

The constant mental weight of wondering if you're going to lose your gig every time cuts are looming goes away, and hopefully you can end up working at a broadcasting company or related outfit that has more job security and better business practices than Clear Channel.

Good luck guys.

Shellmo said...

My best to those two gentlemen and may the doors of opportunity swing wide open for the both of them!!

Ohio Media Watch said...

As I said on the LP board, Rado...best to both you and Marty as you move on to the next adventure.


Gary said...

Man, oh man...no one is unaffected by this economy. Some corporations and even small companies have been so afraid of what the future will bring and over-reacting to the point of ruining some of the good things they possess that will keep them steadfast and solid through this storm.

Best of luck, Marty & Paul! I am a daily listener to the Triv show which won't be the same without you. I'll still listen, but will also keep my ears open to find out where you two land.

Take care....I know you will do well.

Gary Rodgers
Ex-Mayfield Guy

ChrissyKat said...

I am so sorry. You guys were good company on the radio, I liked listening to Simon also. Maybe it was the accent. It was all fun conversation, I don't want to listen to canned music. I like listening to nice people with different points of view. Just very sad to hear this news. Best wishes.

Norm Ezzie said...

Its always about the "bottom line"-that said,when one truly understands what's taking place within all forms of our collective media outlets-in the America of today- I shudder! Freedom of Expression soon will be a distant memory,along with Freedom of Speech! Using that "bottom line" senerio,is just another example of how these corportocracies operate!Sometime soon in that not so far distant future,they too might become expendable- Governmental Control? Ya can bet on it! and that will include the Internet too!

gumm335 said...

Well I had the pleasure of working with Paul and Marty... I wish them both the best.

I wish I could be optimistic that better days lie ahead, but I think we all know better. There sadly is no future in this industry. When de-regulation happened it was the beginning of the end.

Now everything is generic and there is no room for personality. I would love to see both these guys on a station where they could actually be themselves and not have to be constant mouthpieces for Clear Channel agenda.. they are both better then that.

Pat Jenkins said...

i thought this was a picture promoting the next contestants on the biggest loseer... ok that was inhumane and extremely uncalled for. especially since i don't even know these fine gentleman. (i am sorry but i had to!) (and its not like i can't lose a little!!)... as talented as these individuals are i know that there services will be needed rather quickly.

Rod Ice said...

Marty & Paul - You will be missed greatly by the WTAM audience. Triv is cool, but his show will be only 1/3 as good without you guys providing songs, skits, info, and banter. Clear Channel has made a MAJOR mistake here. The ratings will reflect this, very soon. Best of luck to you both!

Anonymous said...

Paul, I really applaud you, Marty, and Brian and Joe for handling this situation with class, dignity and humor.

I may have drifted away from listening to Triv a few years back, but have always had held you and Marty in high regard. Both of you were the heart and soul of the show. You were perfect as Art Modell (maybe even TOO perfect :D), and Marty's production smarts have always impressed me.

One of my favorite memories with you and Triv was the "crack patrol" incident, when the two of you went down W 117th Street, ran a red light, and had patrol cars tailing you. I nearly lost it when Kim asked what was happening back in studio, and I hear... "uh... can't talk now!" A perfect example of how radio can be the "theatre of the mind."

I wish you and Big Daddy nothing but the best. The two of you have a lot left in the tank... either on normal radio, or even online.

Nathan Obral
Webmaster/On-Air Personality
LCCCRadio.com - The Duck

Daisy said...

Clear Channel came in and took over several stations in our area a few years back. I didn't care for what happened to the broadcasts. They lost all the local color and personality that they once had. I don't listen to any of those stations anymore as a result. Best of luck to your friends in finding new jobs.

Anonymous said...

"Normal Radio," ha!