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Talk, Talk, Talk!
May 10, 2002 3:16 PM   Subscribe

Talk, Talk, Talk! Everyone has heard (or heard about) Rush Limbaugh, Dr. Laura, Don Imus, and maybe even Dr. Dean, Neal Boortz, and other big-name talk-radio hosts. Take a look at the Talkers' "100 Most Important Talk Radio Hosts" list and see how many you can identify, have listened to, or admire/despise.
posted by davidmsc (26 comments total)

 

Oliver North
Icon succeeding in natl. radio and TV. Historic figure.


I love this desription of Olly:" Historic Figure"

What a laugh.
posted by yertledaturtle at 3:44 PM on May 10, 2002


A text-based list would have been nice, but that's nitpicky.

Most of the people we get to hear aren't on the list, and one of the few that are on the list isn't really a talker, he's a consumer advocate (Clark Howard).

We did get Lionel for a few weeks until there was some kind of syndication war or something and he got replaced by Glenn Beck, who I can't stand. I really did expect Lionel to look more like Joe Pesci, though.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 3:46 PM on May 10, 2002


Wow, just 6 african-americans.
posted by machaus at 3:50 PM on May 10, 2002


"Wow, just 6 african-americans."

Wow, no Asians, no Native Americans, no Hispanics either.

What's your point?
posted by mr_crash_davis at 4:02 PM on May 10, 2002


This is a PR driven non-list. Proof: Mike Gallagher is the ultra-non-talent. Proof. Jay Diamond is not on the list. Proof: Lionel is.
posted by ParisParamus at 4:04 PM on May 10, 2002


I'm a Clark Howard fan too. If you like him there is a weekend show called "Handle on the Law" hosted by a lawyer, Bill Handle, who gives legal advice. Think of Handle as a funny Clark Howard.
We also get the basic political shows, Limbaugh, Hannity, Boortz. But I prefere the comedy people like Phil Hendrie and Tom Leykis.

And Machaus, how many blacks should be on the list?
posted by Keen at 4:07 PM on May 10, 2002


Roe & Garry are on the list, but Steve Dahl & Kevin Matthews aren't? whats this world coming to?
posted by jbelshaw at 4:12 PM on May 10, 2002


I'm surprised how few I've heard of. Don & Mike, Opie & Anthony, GG Liddy, Don Imus, Dr. Laura, Ollie North, Howard Stern and Rush. The rest are strangers.
posted by crunchland at 4:22 PM on May 10, 2002


Handle also does the AM drive show in LA. Phil Hendrie is god.
posted by owillis at 4:43 PM on May 10, 2002


What's your point?
No value judgement, I was just surprised that radio was that white.
posted by machaus at 5:37 PM on May 10, 2002


None of the Chicago sports-talk hosts made it. I would have thought Mike North would have.
posted by SisterHavana at 6:08 PM on May 10, 2002


I think Mike Malloy should have made the list too.
posted by ArkIlloid at 7:27 PM on May 10, 2002


That nitwit Michael Medved is on the list. He's the epitome of yippie-turned-yuppie and insufferable in either guise. Pheh.
posted by jonmc at 7:32 PM on May 10, 2002


Oh it's a list of American radio talk show hosts
posted by johnny7 at 12:06 AM on May 11, 2002


No Alternative Radio, no This American Life. Feh.
posted by y2karl at 3:24 AM on May 11, 2002


Oh, I forgot--this is about AM Talk Radio--home of the angry white male. And Dr. Laura, honorary angry white male. Oh, and don't forget--tilt the country on its side and all the loose nuts and bolts end up at Parumph, Nevada: Art Bell. *Theme From The Twilight Zone*
posted by y2karl at 3:28 AM on May 11, 2002


They got one right. Mark Davis definitely deserves to be on any list highlighting talented contemporary talk radio personalities. I don't often agree with him, but he's damn good at what he does.

The rest of the list means little or nothing to me. G.Gordon Liddy? Puh-leeze!
posted by ZachsMind at 3:34 AM on May 11, 2002


Y2karl, you're right. I hadn't thought of that. Ira Glass deserved to be on that list as much if not moreso than Rush Limbaugh or Howard Stern. The list is obviously slanted toward corporate owned 'properties.'
posted by ZachsMind at 3:39 AM on May 11, 2002


Just FYI (and I guess a bit off-topic), I went to this site and my norton antivirus popped up a virus alert on a javascript called "seeker.js". I don't know much about viruses, but I thought I'd let you know.
posted by tlong at 5:04 AM on May 11, 2002


no This American Life. Feh.

Well, it is a list of talk radio hosts. I wouldn't consider TAL to be "talk radio." Talk radio is all about the host, who is talking about 99% of the time when he's not taking calls from listeners. TAL has prerecorded segments and music and interviews and so on, the format is completely different. Also, in most markets, NPR is an FM station, which comes close to disqualifying it right there (Stern is the only big-name talker I can think of who regularly appears on FM stations).
posted by kindall at 8:58 AM on May 11, 2002


Okay, I confess. I'm a talk radio geek.

Neal Boortz, 10 - 12. Neal is my favorite, and not just because my political philosophy is most like his (libertarian).

Rush 12 - 3. Entertaining, thought-provoking, occasionally informative.

Local 3 - 6. We just lost a great local host (Michael Graham)who is "moving up" in the Clear Channel maw.

Jim Kramer 6 - 7 - financial advice, syndicated, hell of a lot of a fun. Shame to hear he didn't make the list.

And on it goes. Art Bell overnight, because, well, you know, you just have to keep with those Pesky Alien Doings.

*adjust tinfoil hat*

The guy I missed for years is back on the air locally, Jim Bohannon. Back when Larry King overnight on Mutual was the only talk radio to speak of, Jim took over for him after Larry went to CNN. Bohannon rules.

Now, if I could just get Leykis on a local station...
posted by ebarker at 10:11 AM on May 11, 2002


Kindall, your explanation reads like an excuse. Public radio IS talk radio. From All Things Considered to Car Talk to This American Life. If you don't believe me after reading my diatribe below, read Ira Glass' take on it. He explains how talk radio works. How news radio works. How he and many others have learned the best from both genres and improved upon the format.

It's talk radio the way it should be. Instead of just someone like Rush berating the microphone with short-sighted rhetoric while not doing his homework (any dittoheads out there please feel free to email me privately as an alternative to turning this thread into dittoheadness), NPR and PRI approach life in a refreshing way and show the world back to itself.

Stern can make fun of lesbians, but Glass will get inside their heads for you and help you understand them. Gordon Liddy can waft mercilessly on modern politics, but This American Life dissects modern politics and shows how it ticks. TAL's even touched on why sometimes things don't work out the way we want.

Old talk radio's goal is to get you to listen long enough to get to the commercials, and then sell you a car. However, the Magliozzi brothers explain what to do when your car breaks down. Which is a better service to humanity?

It's still talk, but with a purpose. Actually, the reason why PRI & NPR talents don't belong on the above mentioned list isn't because of some vague criterion for what makes talk radio, but because public talk radio leaves those alleged 100 best personalities in the dust.

Come to think of it, listing Ira Glass with Imus, Dr. Laura, and Oliver North would have been a grave insult to Glass and those who work with him to consistently raise the bar.
posted by ZachsMind at 2:39 PM on May 11, 2002


An interesting quote from Bill O'Reilly:

"Conservative people tend to see the world in black and white terms, good and evil," says O'Reilly in an interview. "Liberals see grays. In any talk format, you have to pound home a strong point of view. If you're not providing controversy and excitement, people won't listen, or watch."

I guess that's why I don't pay much attention to O'Reilly and those of his ilk.
posted by mark13 at 7:02 PM on May 11, 2002


It's talk radio the way it should be.

You mean it's "talk radio the way you like it."

Instead of just someone like Rush berating the microphone with short-sighted rhetoric while not doing his homework

I'd take Rush over Daniel Shorr droning wistfully about how we should reinstate wage and price controls because there's a war on.

I'm glad you like NPR. I happen to like it as well, in addition to Rush Limbaugh, Barry Farber, Gene Burns, Howie Carr, and David Brudnoy. But don't pretend there's anything particularly superior or innovative about it, or that it does anything much better than commercial radio.

Old talk radio's goal is to get you to listen long enough to get to the commercials, and then sell you a car. However, the Magliozzi brothers explain what to do when your car breaks down. Which is a better service to humanity?

And here's an excellent example. There's a show just like this on at least one commercial station in every city in America. In Providence, I can listen to two other auto radio shows in addition to the Magliozzis, and both of them are at least as entertaining and both are more informative.
posted by ljromanoff at 7:56 PM on May 11, 2002


Hey, if you want to insult public radio by calling it "talk radio," be my guest, Zachs. :)
posted by kindall at 12:53 AM on May 12, 2002


I warned you,
I prepared you,
I instructed you,
I told you what to expect
All the times and seasons...
Look where all this talking got us, baby

FYI, Don and Mike are on FM in DC and New York, and they're pretty liberal, though it's rare for the show to be political.
posted by NortonDC at 8:09 AM on May 12, 2002


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