Tulsa: March 2008 Archives

Indie changes

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Emily at Indie Tulsa is expanding that blog's coverage by inviting contributed reviews of independent businesses in the Tulsa area, the sorts of businesses that used to get ink in the recently-demised Community World sections of the Tulsa World. The first such contributed review is of D's Sweet Designs, a bakery in Owasso.

Route 66 News reports that one beloved indie Tulsa business is changing: Swinney's Hardware in Whittier Square is set to close this summer after 74 years in business and 67 years at the current location. Swinney's is the place to go for hard-to-find things, like plumbing parts that work with older fixtures. The two times I ran for City Council, I went to Swinney's to notarize my filing papers. I hope someone buys the place and manages to keep it open.

(Ron's got a nice photo of the Swinney's neon sign lit up at night. OKC neon enthusiast Dwayne has some good daytime photos of the Swinney sign and the sign and marquee of the neighboring Circle Cinema.)

From the Tulsa Police Department:

Homicide Detectives are requesting assistance from the public regarding the latest homicide. On March 11, 2008 at 11:23 p.m., officers were dispatched to 4019 S. 130th East Avenue Apartment #1605 in reference to a shooting. The victim, Jonathon Young - A.K.A. Jerrod Young, was shot outside of this apartment. Young was transported to St. Francis where he was pronounced dead.

Detectives have developed the following individuals as persons of interest.

1. White male, average height and weight, 21-25 yoa, short brown hair, wearing a red ball cap, blue jeans and a gray t-shirt. His first name is possibly "Jeff".

2. White male, average height and weight, 21-25 yoa, short brown hair with long side burns. He was wearing baggie clothes and was described as having a "skater" look.

3. Hispanic male, 21-25 yoa, small in size, long black hair in a pony tail that extended almost to his buttocks, wearing a do-rag on his head, a sweat shirt, and blue jeans. This subject also had a severe black eye.

4. White female, 5' tall, with long blonde hair, wearing a black sweat shirt or hoodie, jeans, and flip-flop shoes.

Anyone with information regarding this homicide is asked to call 596-COPS or 596-9222.

1170 KFAQ's Chris Medlock is taking a couple of days off and will be back on the air Friday. Filling in for him tomorrow and Thursday will be Pat Campbell, until recently morning host on WFLA 540 in Orlando.

I have absolutely no inside info on this, but it seems reasonable to assume that Pat's visit to Tulsa is the first in what may be a series of on-air tryouts to be KFAQ's morning show host, a position recently vacated by Gwen Freeman.

From his blog, Campbell looks like a solid conservative. In 2006 and 2007, Talkers Magazine named him one of the 250 most influential talk radio hosts in the country. I'm looking forward to getting a sense of his personality and style over the next two days, and I hope he enjoys his visit to Tulsa.

In reading up on Pat Campbell, I discovered that he met a similar fate to that of another conservative radio talk show host, my friend Kevin McCullough, late of WMCA 570 / WWDJ 970 in New York.

WFLA is one of the stations in Clear Channel's Orlando cluster. Clear Channel decided to change the format of a sister station, WQTM 740, from sports talk to "La Preciosa," Clear Channel's Mexican music format. (KIZS 101.5 is Clear Channel's La Preciosa station in Tulsa.) At the same time, they decided to move some of WQTM's sports talk programming to 570, bumping Campbell off the air. Campbell wasn't even allowed to say goodbye to his listeners on air. (To WFLA's credit, they left up Campbell's page on their website, with an explanation of his absence from the airwaves.)

In McCullough's case, his show was split between Salem Broadcasting's two New York City frequencies. Salem's stations in New York City had been about half local and national talk, carrying most of the Salem Radio Network lineup (e.g., Bill Bennett, Michael Medved), but they also carried a lot of paid programming from national Christian ministries -- e.g., Chuck Swindoll, James Dobson, Kenneth Hagin. In January, Salem made the decision to drop all local talk and almost all national talk, because of high demand from national ministries for air time in the #1 market. The only remaining talk on the cluster is two hours of Dr. Laura on WWDJ and 90 minutes of Janet Parshall on WMCA. McCullough, like Campbell, was on the air one day and gone the next, again with no opportunity to bid farewell to his listeners on the air. Thankfully, like Campbell, he could use his blog to let the listeners know what had happened. (Again, to Salem's credit, they've kept Kevin on their Townhall.com site as a columnist and blogger.)

(It's curious, though. Less than a month ago, I was able to use the Internet Archive's Wayback Machine to double-check my memory of the pre-2008 lineup on WMCA and WWDJ. Tonight I find that the website for the stations, nycradio.com, is blocking the Internet Archive. That situation always bugs me when I come across it.)

I hate to see local talk get squeezed out, and I'm thankful that Journal Broadcast Group remains committed to the idea, with over 24 hours of local talk shows each week on KFAQ.

MORE: This morning, KFAQ announced the addition of another local program. Joe Riddle brings his old-time radio show to the station, every Sunday night from 6 pm - 9 pm, sponsored by Humana.

I first met Joe almost 30 years ago, when he was a producer for KRMG's evening talk shows, Sports Line with Bob Carpenter and Night Line with David Stanford. I'd gone with a group of high school friends to visit KRMG's studios atop Liberty Towers at 15th and Boulder. Joe recorded one of our bunch doing his best David Stanford impression.

Joe's old-time radio show is fun listening, and I'm happy that KFAQ has picked it up. (Now if someone would only bring back Riders Radio Theater.)

It's fun to step back 70 years to the good old days of radio comedy and drama, although it'd be nice just to step back 30 years, to the days before cutthroat corporate control of the airwaves, back when local people like Mr. Swanson and Mr. Stuart owned stations.

Tulsa Master Gardeners, part of the OSU Extension office at Expo Square, has posted an ice storm recovery page with links to advice on whether a tree is likely to recover, how to prune trees to help a tree recover, and what trees to plant to replace those that were lost to the storm or to preventative removal by the utility companies.

There's a lot of information to digest. I'd like to find the right kind of tree to plant along our back fence, which is a utility easement. There's a three-foot wide strip planted with iris which used to be shaded by volunteer trees, but the trees were cleared out by PSO, and the sunlight allows weeds to thrive. The old trees also provided screening between our backyard and the neighbors' yard. It would be nice to find some trees that would grow to about 12' and provide partial shade below. Any suggestions?

Gwen Freeman, until recently host of KFAQ Mornings here in Tulsa, has rejoined Michael DelGiorno at WWTN (Supertalk 99.7 WTN) in Nashville. Starting tomorrow, you'll be able to hear her on DelGiorno's program from 9 am to 1 pm each weekday. (You can listen live to WTN by clicking here. Please note that the link works best in Internet Explorer.) The station will be easing her into the co-host position, so you probably won't hear much of her at first.

Gwen's departure is a loss for Tulsa radio, and I know from the many comments and questions I've received these past three weeks that her friends and listeners miss her dearly. I do, too. I'm hopeful that Nashville's larger market, there at the hub of the music industry, will give greater scope for her talents.

MORE: KFAQ is searching for a new morning show host. The qualifications -- a minimum of three to five years talk show experience, preferably morning show experience, plus:

A knowledge and understanding of issues important to a conservative talk show audience. Excellent verbal and written communications skills required; good voice quality that includes clear enunciation; ability to present your perspectives and insights in an entertaining and creative way; strong problem solving abilities; high work ethic; ability to meet deadlines and detail orientation; operate studio equipment; general knowledge of radio station operation; computer proficiency; an appreciation and understanding of the sales process.

In addition to hosting the morning show, the job requires "blogging and other web generated content tied to the morning show; public appearances; community/event involvement, and other duties as assigned by managers."

UPDATE: Tulsa Business Journal has a quote from WWTN management:

"Tulsa's loss is my gain," said John Mountz, WWTN vice president. "We have been looking forward to re-uniting them."

About this Archive

This page is a archive of entries in the Tulsa category from March 2008.

Tulsa: February 2008 is the previous archive.

Tulsa: June 2008 is the next archive.

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