At least four Milwaukee morning radio voices are calling on their listeners to nominate them for a shot at co-hosting the Regis Philbin-Kelly Ripa TV show next month.
And all are using social media in their campaigns to win the "Men of Radio Co-host for a Day" competition on the morning TV show airing here on at 9 a.m. weekdays on Channel 12. Listeners have until Dec. 10 to nominate their favorite hosts.
WMYX-FM (99.1)'s Kidd O'Shea has gone as far as replacing his Facebook profile picture with the "Live! with Regis and Kelly" logo.
Also turning to Facebook to get nominated is WKLH-FM (96.5)'s Dave Luczak who is asking his Facebook friends to "help a FB brutha' out."
Wes McKane of the WXSS-FM (103.7) morning team superimposed his face over Ripa's in his new Facebook profile picture, writing "You can vote more then once ... and ya might even win a toaster!"
"I wasn't concerned about Wes, but I am a bit more concerned about Dave," joked O'Shea when I told him that Luczak had entered the fray.
"We need a hometown boy to represent Milwaukee," said O'Shea, "And it's one more step in my plan to take over Ryan Seacrest's job."
As for Luczak, "I didn't know the competition existed until a reader emailed me and said I should go for it."
Among his strong points: "I'm definitely used to working with a strong, intelligent attractive woman... And, frankly, I'd bring the demo down by at least 20 years with Reege."
He tells me that while he's in it to win it, he wouldn't be horribly upset if one of Milwaukee's other two contenders get picked. "If they win, they deserve it. They're both good at what they do."
UPDATE: After posting this, I learned that WSSP-AM (1250)'s Mike Wickett has also thrown his hat into the Regis and Kelly ring.
Ryan extends, Dr. Dean retires: Clear Channel has extended its deal with Seacrest, which means three more years of his syndicated radio show, which airs here on WMYX from 4 to 7 p.m. weekdays.
Meanwhile, long-time medical talker Dr. Dean Edell has announced his retirement from radio. Here's the audio of his announcement. His show airs at 5 p.m. Sundays on WISN-AM (1130).
John Jagler's goodbye: Kudos to WTMJ-AM (620) for keeping John Jagler's farewell blog post online after Jagler signed off from the station last week. Radio stations sometimes erase all memory of a personality after they leave, so it's important to note when they don't.
Blogs Jagler, " It's not important what led to this change. Just know that I am blessed knowing you all and I never ... not once ... took for granted the privilege I had of waking you up in the morning."
Jagler continues to be a presence on Twitter, even though he's not on the radio.
Meanwhile, co-host Gene Mueller blogged his farewell to Jagler: "The Big Cat is doing what few in radio get to do. He's leaving on his own terms, a box under his arm but no pink slip in his hand."
There's no official word just yet on Jagler's next gig. He left the station after 15 years, and although he didn't comment on the departure, his job was changing as the station morning and afternoon drive-time shows take a harder, quicker news edge in an environment changed by the new portable people meter ratings system.
A seasonal change: Milwaukee Radio Group -- the cluster of Saga-owned radio stations that include WKLH and WHQG-FM (102.9) -- is dumping its annual holiday party in favor of a new idea called "Take a Day, Make a Day."
New general manager Annmarie Topel instituted a paid vacation day for staff members, combined with a gift at a local coffee shop, so staffers can donate a day to a "greater cause," such as helping a neighbor or doing volunteer work.
On TV: CBS' Tuesday night airing of "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer" pulled in more than 11 million viewers and was beaten only by Fox's "Glee," according to Nielsen Media Research numbers. Not bad for a 46-year-old stop-action animated special.
- Dish Network is the first pay-TV service to start offering live programming to iPads, with some upgrades that could cost $99.
- Spike has renewed "Auction Hunters," saying the "reality" show brings in slightly older viewers than the normal Spike show. And they mean it in a good way.
- Eonline.com's Marc Malkin quotes a source as saying ABC's "Dancing with the Stars" is shooting for Todd Palin, Meghan McCain and Elliot Spitzer as potential dancing "stars."
Real, live, TV: It's rare that you see a professional singer falter on a national TV show, but that's what happened as Susan Boyle tried to get through "Oh Holy Night" on ABC's "The View."
Here's the video:
Tim Cuprisin is the media columnist for OnMilwaukee.com. He's been a journalist for 30 years, starting in 1979 as a police reporter at the old City News Bureau of Chicago, a legendary wire service that's the reputed source of the journalistic maxim "if your mother says she loves you, check it out." He spent a couple years in the mean streets of his native Chicago, and then moved on to the Green Bay Press-Gazette and USA Today, before coming to the Milwaukee Journal in 1986.
A general assignment reporter, Cuprisin traveled Eastern Europe on several projects, starting with a look at Poland after five years of martial law, and a tour of six countries in the region after the Berlin Wall opened and Communism fell. He spent six weeks traversing the lands of the former Yugoslavia in 1994, linking Milwaukee Serbs, Croats and Bosnians with their war-torn homeland.
In the fall of 1994, a lifetime of serious television viewing earned him a daily column in the Milwaukee Journal (and, later the Journal Sentinel) focusing on TV and radio. For 15 years, he has chronicled the changes rocking broadcasting, both nationally and in Milwaukee, an effort he continues at OnMilwaukee.com.
When he's not watching TV, Cuprisin enjoys tending to his vegetable garden in the backyard of his home in Whitefish Bay, cooking and traveling.