Friday, February 25, 2011

EXCERPT: Cumulus Operating Manual, Volume Eleven, Chapter 7, Article IV, Paragraph 79


"Drops artificially created by a crowd being directed by a host can be very effective and amusing.  They reinforce the idea of a 'station community' and remind listeners of the enthusiasm of other listeners for the station and its programs.  Hosts should 'be on the lookout' for opportunities to create such drops.  Likely opportunities may arise at remote broadcasts, station-sponsored gatherings, and even station-sponsored sporting events.  For maximum effectiveness, please observe the following procedures:

"(a) Keep the proposed language or reaction (laughing, yelling) simple.  Make sure that the crowd can be heard through the open mics at the particular function.  If possible, involve the entire group within mic range so that extraneous signal will not spoil the drop. 

"(b)  Don't laugh over the drop."


James said...

guess you had to be there to get this.

The Plainsman said...

Pretty much. You didn't have to be at Ticketstock, but you at least had to be listening to The Hardline.

Which was, by the way, pretty good today.

That N.Y. Michael Gruber must be tearing his hair out. Although he did an instant edit on the "laughing" drop that was pretty creative.

Apologies for the extremely narrow interest of this particular post.

Anonymous said...

"(b) Don't laugh over the drop."

Yup. Totally ruined it. That was some good professional broadcasting.

-Anon B

The Plainsman said...

Corby gets so much grief from Confessors that I hate to pile on, but those were not good moments for him.

Actually, he did it twice: Once on the "laugh like Doyle King" staged drop, and again on the "worst E-News ever" staged drop.

Michael G cleverly edited it so that by the end of the show, he was playing the "laugh like Doyle" drop and cutting it off a quarter-second after Corby's first shriek, so it still retained a modicum of effectiveness. Listen for it. I'm not sure the "worst E-News ever" drop was salvageable.

Anonymous said...

Three things were confirmed in my mind after listening to this weekend's programming:

(i) The Ticket is truly singular and great.

(ii) Corby cannot help but make himself the focal point of whatever he's involved in (for better or worse; and most always it's for worse).

(iii) And I'm sorry, but Donovan is awful. He has his moments, but he's not very funny. Not only is he not funny, but he also talks over everyone, hasn't a clue as to when to move off a topic and/or close his mouth to let others speak, and overall doesn't appear to be able to carry on a conversation past the superficial level. Too boot, it seems to me to be rather obvious that the other hosts are afraid to shush him like they do to each other. There is no way in hades that, say, Gordo would allow for Dan to prattle on and on with one unfunny and obvious remark after another without saying something.

I think Donovan is fine in little bursts. But only in little bursts.

Douglas Sutherland said...

That's really interesting, anon. I don't remember hearing anyone bagging on Donnie. I have noticed that people don't really bag on him. Even the big nut-kickers Bob and Dan tread lightly (or lighter than they do with other Targets like Gribble or SeaBass). That being said I think it might be because Donnie is just so nice to everyone. As far as quirks go, Donnie doesn't have many other than being black. He's not a sports nut like Bob or a clean freak/ recluse like Dan. He just hasn't seen movies. But he's up for anything. I'm not sure why Cumulus felt the need to put him in with Bob and Dan, and the first year was a little weird, but now I think Donnie fits in well. His sports points are somewhat flat at times, kind of the way Danny or Corby can be at topics they're not super familiar with.

I'm thinking there might be a few reasons why Donnie kind of sticks out a little on the round tables.

1. He's (kind of) new. Bob and Dan have said that despite being on the air for 10+ years, they're still "the new guys" so I can imagine Donnie faces more of that than they do.

2. He's supposed to be on the same level. Normally when Bob and Dan make fun of someone it's because that person either not there in person, they're playing radio with someone who has been on the air as long or longer than they have, or in the radio caste system the subject of ridicule is lower.

and 3. The whole race thing. I think The Ticket does a nice job of using the race thing to their advantage, but like Anon said, the shots at Donnie are more careful and less personal.

I love Donnie and I think he's The Ticket Jerry Hairston Jr. He can fit in just about anywhere and do an adequate job at his spot. I mean, he makes a three hour show with Rich Phillips listenable, and that is no small feat.

T4 In Rockwall said...

Wow Douglas, I didn't realize being black was a quirk. At least it's not in my book.

Douglas Sutherland said...

When you're surrounded by extremely white broadcasters, I'd say it's a quirk.

The Plainsman said...

I am with Anon in that from everything I have heard Ticketstock was a howling success. The Ticket deserves huge credit for putting these things on (although I'm sure there's also a strong sponsor/sales department advantage to be gained by putting it on). Logistics, planning, and then pulling it off -- gotta be proud to be a P1. Sounded pretty fun on the radio, too. (I did not make it up to the Plano plains.)

I'm with Douglas on Donovan. I've always liked Donovan's on-air personality, a real nice counterbalance to dyspeptic Dan and basso Bob. I haven't noticed a hands-off attitude towards him, but, like Douglas, I think his mild personality doesn't really inspire a lot of arse-kicking. In the past I've written that I think BaD handles the race thing pretty well, not totally hands-off, bt not offensive, and Donovan holds his own.

As far as Corby is concerned -- I'm repeating myself, but when the guy is properly dialed in and Mike is engaged in the show, Corby is good-to-great and can be very funny. When he's all wired up and Mike isn't inclined to press the issue, he can be a bit much.

Got a real sizzler in the hopper, so stay tuned.

cancer monkey said...

That is the definition of a tease.

Anonymous said...

No joke, that IS the definition of a tease! Give up the goods, Plainsman!

Douglas Sutherland makes some good points. Especially regarding Donnie's amiable nature and why he's treated more gently than the others. However, I do stand by my (subjective) opinion that he isn't funny, will beat something into the ground, and will talk over/take over an entire segment... with no one stepping in to stop it.

As far as the racial aspect goes, it seems to me that where Donnie is concerned, Donnie himself brings it up/instigates it more often than not. Now when it comes to the station as a whole, those "honors" go to Gordo and Corby. Both of whom, ironically, believe themselves to be progressively-minded. I guess when they say things, it doesn't count... because we *know* they only mean it in a *fun* way. There's nothing wrong, in my esteem, with talking about race-related things on air; however, when they're said just because it's an "insert-here" moment (e.g., the "they are AFRICAN AMERICANS, SIR!" punchline), I find it to be ugly.

Sorry, I don't intend to start a political/race thread, honestly, but I must admit that it's taken me a long while to be able to stomach some of the racially risque utterances put forth on the station. Actually, it's the only thing about the Ticket that puts me off.

ap said...

Bob & Dan described it best over a year ago when they described Donny as "a professional friend" in that he's capable of getting along with just about anyone. I don't know what the original BaD Radio sounded like, but from what I've been able to gather, it was a far more contentious atmosphere than it was post-Donny - perhaps he has something to do with smoothing things out a bit? Just guessing though.

As for nut-kicking, I'd say he gets his fair share. Not directly, but drops and nicknames that might otherwise be considered by some (JWP?) as questionable can be played because Donny is part of the lineup - "look, we have a black guy, so we can say these things!" Add that to the fact that at least one member of every 'black guy' roundtable I've heard paints Donovan as an 'Uncle Tom', and I'd say he gets his ribbing from P1's and hosts alike.

Sidenote: I'm biased -- Donny has always been very pleasant to me whenever I've emailed him (even moreso than other ticket hosts), so naturally I have an affinity for him. Having written all that, I have yet to hear anything from this weekend, so I reserve the right to retract this comment at a future date.

The Plainsman said...

We're straying into BaD territory here, which is not my strong suit. So I'm glad to have seasoned listeners comment on a show that I don't get around to very often.

I did get around to it for awhile today and heard something of itnerest. I'm packaging for a Dan retrospective later in 2011.

amused said...

you all worry way too much about the station

The Plainsman said...

The Ticket should be concerned when people like we-all stop worrying about the station.

At least you're amused. We're amused, too. This is our hobby. The station cultivates a personal relationship with the P1. Of course we worry about them when circumstances are worrisome. It's fun.