One of the perks of working from home is I don’t have to share the choice of radio stations with any co-workers.
Working for a daily newspaper requires attention to detail. I can’t have the television on. It’s too distracting. The radio serves the purpose of providing entertainment and information, but passively in the background. I can tune it out when I have to concentrate, and I can listen casually when I’m caught up on deadline assignments.
I’ve been a radio person my entire life. At a young age, a neighborhood friend and I were fans of a late-night talk show hosted by radio-personality Roy Fox on Boston’s WMEX. We won a contest to meet the Fox and his co-host, the Foxy Lady. We even made custom Fox t-shirts to wear to the meet and greet.
When I got a little older I listened to Jerry Williams and Pat Whitely on WRKO-AM, on their morning and afternoon talk shows. They offered current events with a political slant. The most entertaining part of the shows were the local callers offering opinions and criticisms.
My current radio listening habits are as eclectic as my taste in music. I begin listening at 6 a.m. by tuning in to “Billy & Lisa In The Morning” on KISS-108 FM. For years, it was the Matty in the Morning Show. When Matt Siegel retired in a vague combination of elderly rage and shadowed controversy, the torch was passed to the omnipresent Billy Costa along with the lovely Lisa Donavan and their crew. The show is fast paced, local and entertaining, although the music is a bit repetitious. The show is targeted at a younger audience but I find the morning banter entertaining. I also enjoy their entertainment reports, with traffic and weather thrown in for good measure
Some days I switch my morning listening schedule to the other end of the spectrum with the Howard Stern Show on SiriusXM. Stern is a master interviewer, somehow getting celebrities to let their guard down and prove they are real people. The show crosses the line of good-taste everyday. I have to turn it off if I’m in mixed company or if any of my grandchildren are around.
Somewhere around 10 a.m. I ask Alexa to tune to the iHeart radio app. By accident I found a radio station from Los Angeles called KFI-AM. It’s become my daily listening favorite. I’m up to date on California politics, traffic and weather. Bill Handel is the host of the morning news show. Handel is a lawyer with a sense of humor who offers a different perspective on the latest news. At noon, Gary and Shannon are on-air personalities who have a great time together as they share stories of the day including segments like Tech Tuesday and What’chu Watchin’ Wednesday.
Later in the afternoon, I tune in to a couple of celebrity podcasts. “Smartless”, is hosted by actors Jason Bateman, Sean Hayes, and Will Arnett. Their one-on-one interviews each week with celebrity friends are funny and enlightening. The trio began broadcasting in 2020 during the pandemic and they kept broadcasting weekly even when the pandemic ended. Another interesting podcast is “Literally With Rob Lowe”. The actor interviews Hollywood acquaintances and political figures who share behind-the-scenes tidbits with the audience.
After dinner, when the television news gets repetitious, I turn on the radio again and listen to KFI-AM with early evening host Tim Conway Jr. (yes, that Tim Conway). His comedic take on the news with his posse of background players makes for good radio. By bedtime, I’m still tuned in and listening to “Later, With Mo Kelly” which leads in to “Coast to Coast AM” This unique late-night talk show is hosted by George Noory (formerly anchored by the late Art Bell). The overnight airwaves are filled with tales of UFOs, ghostly encounters and Bigfoot sightings. Perfect stories to listen to while falling asleep.
I usually wake up around 5 a.m. and listen to WBZ NewsRadio 1030 before getting out of bed around 6 a.m. After reviewing my schedule, it’s no wonder I’m feeling fatigued. I may be exhausted but at least I’m very well informed.