Radio Waves: 12/22/17

Sounds of the Season Return!

For the 8th consecutive year, David Grudt — a regular reader of this column — is programming Sounds of the Season  that will once again be heard on Ken Borgers’ internet tribute to the original KNOB (now KLAX, 97.9 FM). You can find it at

It’s a 36-hour program that starts at noon on December 24th, Christmas Eve and ends at Midnight on December 25th, Christmas day.

The show features jazz instrumental and vocal interpretations of holiday music favorites; a highlight of the annual program is a reading of the classic “Twas the Night Before Christmas” by the late, great LA Jazz DJ Chuck Niles, to be heard this year six times: noon and 6 p.m. December 24th; and at midnight, 6 a.m., noon, and 6 p.m. December 25th. harkens back to Sleepy Stein’s KNOB/Long Beach, playing mainstream jazz 24 hours a day. Stein was the owner of the original KNOB, launched in 1957 with just 320 watts at its original frequency of 103.1 FM. One year later, he was able to increase power to 79,000 watts by moving to a new frequency, 97.9.

Stein sold the station in 1966; the new owners changed the format to MOR (Middle of the Road), Beautiful Music and eventually soft rock. In 1988, current owners changed it to

Spanish; the format is now Regional Mexican music.

Howard Holiday

Howard Stern is taking some holiday vacation time away from his SiriusXM channels known as Howard 100 and Howard 101.

Since Midnight Eastern time on December 18th and running through New Year’s Day, Channel 100 is featuring Howard 100: The Interviews, described as the best (maybe all?) interviews Stern has aired over the past year. Included will be Adam Sandler, David Letterman, Robert Plant Jerry Seinfeld and more.

Then over on Channel 101, Stern is airing best-of 2017 segments that are not interviews. He’s calling it Howard 101: Everything Else.

I am a later fan of Stern’s; I actually could not understand the hype of his show back in the days when he was on traditional radio and often guesting on NBC Television’s Late Night with David Letterman. I think it had much to do with his making fun of celebrities that I really didn’t even care about. His appearances on Letterman left me thinking he was just a mean New Yorker.

When he came to town via KLSX (now KAMP, 97.1 FM) I was unimpressed. So much that I wrote a review stating that he was so bad, he wouldn’t last. Then I heard his news hours with Robin Quivers. And I saw his movie Private Parts (my wife Jean was always a huge fan of his, so she dragged me to the movie which I found hilarious).

I heard he and Quivers mock me and my column on the show. Eventually I heard his fans making it into coverage of actual news events on network and cable television stations; they would act as eyewitnesses to developing news stories leading the reporters along, and suddenly jump in with Howard-isms such as “bababooey” or some vulgar statement about Stern on the air. The idea was to prove how news reporters often don’t check sources.

Finally, I was hooked and I developed a huge respect for his program. Ironically, I can hear Stern in my truck because I have always had a Sirius subscription and now have SiriusXM All Access; my wife, the original fan who liked him years before I did, has an XM radio in her car that can’t get Channels 100 and 101. I think I better fix that.