Sunday, March 10, 2013

Thumpin' and twistin' while WBAI burns out...

"Sister from another Planet" is apparently on another planet. She played records of black pop music, mumbled a lot to herself in her usual confused manner, mentioned in passing that a fund drive was on, adding, "this time it's real." Huh? Then she went on and on about the importance of her show and the "Saturday night lineup" of important music.

Huh? again.

At 11PM, when she went off, a lengthy segue of nice but not at all remarkable '60s-'70s pop music came on, and continued on, and on for 40 minutes. Up to that point, there was no introduction to the "show," no talk of a financial crisis, no plugs, nothing that you are not likely to hear on any other black station on a Saturday night. 

When he finally spoke, Tony Ryan named the artists heard, said 

something about money being needed, but that he didn't feel like 

talking about that right now. Then he encouraged listeners to text 
him or access his Facebook site with their musical requests, giving out phone numbers for both. There was not a single mention of the Transmitter Fund phone number! "I want to 

He finally gave out the transmitter fund phone number, but it was an hour into the program, and then almost apologetically. Within a minute, he added, "this is not really a fund raising program, we just need the money—I want to get back to the music—and that's what he did, starting another segue segment.

If I were one of the WBAI producer/hosts who have true concern for the station's integrity and welfare, I would demand some immediate firings, starting with Reimers.

This is really pitiful. We know that Reimers does not listen to WBAI, but I thought Summer Reese—if she's still in town—might be. If so, I guess she also regards the impending and very possible shut-down of WBAI as a joke. Will they refund money to listeners who donated in good faith? Listeners should demand that.

At midnight, Ryan interrupted the Temps singing "Just My Imagination" to announce that he had just been texted by Berthold Reimers. So he was listening, after all, but what did he text? Did he tell Tony Ryan to pitch? Yes, but only jokingly. According to Ryan, Reimers said that the Temptations' recording was just his kind of song and that he should ask someone to donate a million dollars.

About ten minutes later, Ryan did make a half-assed pitch, offering a pair of tickets to one of his outside events for $100. He also mentioned that WBAI has a backup plan in case the transmitter is lost.

The backup plan? Streaming. Can you believe it?

No comments:

Post a Comment