Tuesday, December 31, 2013

A Few Year-End Thoughts from Confessor Thomas, and a Happy New Year to All Confessors

A few weeks ago, Thomas the Confessor left a couple of interesting, nicely-composed comments that I stored away for rebroadcast.    It's a backward look and I thought NYE was an appropriately nostalgic juncture to brush them off and display them.  They are lightly edited and reformatted for clarity:

It's funny how so much changed so quickly. The Littlest of Ones went from Skip Bayliss proclaiming they'll kick everyone's butt on D1 to packing out road shows in a few months. It went from a startup that no one in the industry thought would last 6 months to leading the pack within a few years. It had a fairly steady stream of turnover and tweaks outside The Musketeers until BaD hit the scene in 1999. It's also seen the metamorphosis of some hosts. Some for the better, some not.

It's gone from a primarily caller-driven station to a primarily talent-driven station. And it has trend-setted and set the bar for nearly all other sports/guy talk stations in America. But, to my mind (a la Jerry Jones), the biggest change has to have been what has occurred with/in technology.

My D1P1 status allows me to go back and map out every jump in technology we've had over the last 20 years. It's breathtaking. The effect it's had on The Ticket and the listener, too, is breathtaking.

It seems like yesterday when Sideshow Bob was faxing in to THL on a daily basis. Outside of Fax Fodder, mind you. Now, many below the age of 35 have very little, if any, idea what a fax machine or a fax is. The internet was almost all dial up. At least it was for 99% of all home service. We all had Internet America (local outfit) or AOL for a provider. It was slower than molasses, and there wasn't that much on there yet as far as time wasting goes.

Most of the sports, entertainment, and news stuff that was being discussed came from ESPN and the news. Which meant that both listener and host pretty much knew the same thing at the same time. Which also meant that everything was current and therefore the discussion had more urgency and zip to it. It was more of a conversation, and not a commentary like it is now. It also made you feel more a part of it. And with the way the interaction between host and listener was back then, you actually could be a part of it.

Now it seems like the majority of the listeners, specially the younger ones, only care for the bits or the outlandish, the shocking statement. And the drops.  I get it. I really do. But you rarely get that warm and fuzzy "I'm a part of this" feeling from the interaction between the hosts or between host and listener anymore. Sometimes you do, but it's very rare.

What does this mean? I'll take a stab at it. Hopefully it makes sense.

Like [an earlier commenter] said, remotes were different then. THL really did hang out afterwards. Most were in restaurant-bars or bars. Not only that, but also the younger and/or single guys used to make no secret about where they hung out at and/or where they were going to hang at on such and such a night. You could easily have some suds and a conversation with Junior, Gordo, Followill, Doogie (if any of you remember him), sometimes Expo, and sometimes the (at that time) producer, Cat.

Greggo was an 817 guy then. He had his own longtime running buddies. But he sure would sit down with you after a remote. Rhynes was married and had not yet hit his belated midlife crisis. Like [the earlier commenter] I also suffer from Good Old Days Syndrome. But it was THAT good, people. Truly it was that good. When Rhyner issued his "there'll never be anything like it again once it's gone" statement, for me, "it" left the building around 2006.

It was the immediacy of the on air conversation, due to both host and listener knowing the same things at the same time, and its making you feel like you were having it with the hosts that also made the conversations and friendships after the remotes come about. Without [that immediacy], it would've been like it is now at a remote or a station-listener event (I go to most of them). Which means that the hosts are friendly but mostly guarded in nature, and when the remote or event is over, so too are they. Work is over and they're outta there. Just like the other stations do and have always done (been to several old-days Galloway and others remotes so I know what I speak of).  

I wonder whether the listenership would have had such loyalty early on if [remotes hadn't had that personal flavor they had at the beginning]?  It was that loyalty and host-listener bunker mentality that made it what it is. The bunker mentality still exists. You read it here in the comments whenever someone even hints that another station isn't so bad.

We'll never know.

Thank you Thomas, and thanks also for permitting me to spotlight your comments, which of course you didn't.  See where he went with that?  He found a source for the intimate relationship between hosts and P1's in two places:  (1) The relatively primitive state of sports news in the very early Internet days meant that you were learning it when the hosts were, which led to greater identification between listeners and hosts in the context of the shows themselves.  This was enhanced by the greater emphasis on callers and faxers.  (2) This schlopped over to the personal contact that remotes afforded.  He wonders (I'm extrapolating a little here, Thomas, please excuse me) if The Ticket would have exploded with the intensity of its early, loyal listeners if the technology were then as it is now.  As he says, we'll never know.

          Buckle up, confessing Buttercups, round up a designated driver, and get home safely tonight.  See you in 2014, and Thank You for Shopping at My Ticket Confession.

          Happy New Year.

Monday, December 23, 2013

A Cat Flyby

Jeff Catlin does not regularly read this site, but he advises that he drops by every few months.  He was interested in the thread of comments prompted by the Sunday night show a couple of weeks ago featuring Ticket Chicks, and, in particular, the theme started by, of all people, Kevin Turner.  KT, you will recall, expressed outrage-by-proxy that long-time JVs were being passed over for opportunities to broadcast.

In the thread that followed, some Confessors pointed out that, in fact, some of the JV had, in fact, developed regular shows on The Ticket.

The Pan-American Catman dropped me an email, which he has generously permitted me to use, in part.  It is lightly edited at his request:

"Do you know how many so called 'JV'ers' have come to me to pitch me ideas for their shows in the last year  .  .  . and I am seriously thinking about this as to not miss-speak here. The answer is 0.  One guy has expressed interest in hosting over the holidays. But not one other person, team or group has come to me and said 'hey, give us a chance.'

"Do you know how many JV'ers have come to me to pitch me ideas on hosting a show in the past TWO Years?  The answer is one."

Thank you, Western Hemisphere Catman.  So it would seem that there is no general clamor among the showless JV to develop something for the air.

I'm sure that if he were queried, The Catman of the Americas would wish all Confessors a very Merry Christmas, or, depending on Cumulus policy on such matters, a very Happy Holiday.

MTC's own employee handbook permits the wishing of a Merry Christmas, and you all have been so wished.   Be blessed as your beliefs provide.  See you in a few days.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Three Ads

Before I get to the three ads:

(1)  If anyone knows whether the Ticket Chicks will be broadcasting today and when , please let us know ASAP.  Norm and Donovan will presumably be doing the post-game into the evening, so unclear if they will be on this week.

(2)  PREGAME NOTE:  The station has been promoting the Cowboys Pre-Game Plus  that is sometimes broadcast before the official Sturm + Phillips pregame show.  Not sure who is doing it this year, but I recall it as very worthwhile last year.

*     *     *

Ad One:  Reagor Dykes Auto Group

Unquestionably the worst-produced ads to have appeared on The Ticket since I started listening in 2004. Bart Reagor sounds like he is recording his lines in a cavernous bathroom at old Texas Stadium about 20 feet away from the mic, while the person he is supposedly having a conversation with -- the guy with the kid who plays baseball, and the female high school graduate who sounds like she's about nine with a room-temp IQ (one "Ashley") -- are more or less conventionally recorded.

But the main question is: what the hell is the Reagor Dykes Auto Group?  If you go to this website (www.rddirectauto.com), it appears to be a series of Toyota-Ford-Lincoln-Mitsubishi dealerships in West Texas.  What is unusually "direct" about that, I don't know, but whatever it is, it appears to be a subsidiary of the "auto group" itself, which on this website (http://www.reagordykesautogroup.com/) touts itself as being able to get you "any car you want," and lists the various locations and capabilities.  
In other words, it's a series of new-car dealerships and, astonishingly, you can also get used cars there, and, wonder of wonders, they offer leasing.  How they materialize cars that you "want" that they don't have on their lot is unexplained, but my car-buying experience has persuaded me that any dealer can get pretty much any car in the same way that the car leasing companies (D&M, AutoFlex) are able to.

By the way -- is Ashley, who gets the BMW for her graduation present, a good endorsement interview?  She may be headed for a career in quantum physics but sounds dumb as a stump and a member of a slice of society where everyone who graduates from high school gets a car. (She learned about this "great dealership" -- the name of which she has obviously forgotten or can't pronounce -- from her friends who got their cars there.)


Ad Two:  The Blind Guy

Now there is a strange spot.   This guy comes on.  He sounds AA.  He says we can't see him because we're listening to him on the radio, and he says he can't see us because he's totally blind.  Well, maybe so, but he also can't see us because he's speaking to us on the radio and, additionally, because he recorded this thing a way long time ago.  He couldn't see us if he were Superman.   But let's put aside these logical issues and ask ourselves, as we did with RDAG, what the hell this ad is about.

There is one mention of the affliction that the guy is suffering from:  "924".

But that is not correct, as I discovered as I tried to find out what this is all about.  

It's not "924" -- it's "non-24."   Here:  (http://www.non-24.com/)  It is a circadian sleep disorder, which the AA guy mentions in the ad.    It barely mentions anything else, but gives a phone number -- not a website, no brand name of any medicine, just a phone number -- to call.    Why so coy, I have no idea.  Obviously, someone is flogging a drug, and the drug is manufactured by Vanda Pharmaceuticals.  This ad feels like a setup, something to pique our interest in this poor guy's condition, and we'll soon hear another set of ads that resolve this mystery.

Ad Three:  Danny and the North Texas Field Office of the Order of Gentlemen

First time I heard this ad I didn't immediately associate it with Danny because he nowhere identifies himself.  Second time I heard it I caught an inflection and thought -- whoa, this is Danny playing it straight for Gentleman Jack.

Is there another ad done by a Ticket personality where, somewhere along the line, the speaker doesn't identify himself?  The Texas Land & Cattle ads don't identify the speakers at the outset, but Corby-Mike-Danny each speak one another's names.  There are probably a bunch of ads done by hosts where the host doesn't identify himself, but I can't think of any right now.  

Danny could be a professional voice -- he's got a couple of pronunciations to standardize (the one I catch is "min" for "men"), but this JG ad showcases nicely how good he can sound in a not-deliberately-over-the-top type of ad (Texas Land/Cattle).  

[Someone is probably going to write me and say "that's not Danny," but I'm pretty sure it is -- and, of course, he's been flogging GJ in the Whiskey War ads with Corby, who's wielding Woodford Reserve.]

*     *     *


Sunday, December 8, 2013

What in the Name of All That is Ticket-Holy . . .

I only heard five minutes of it after I saw the posts you will see in just a moment.

This evening The Ticket broadcast a Ticket-produced shows with an all-chick lineup.

Not chicks talking sports.

Chicks talking relationships.

Chicks talking things of chick-heavy interest.

The five minutes I heard did not reflect well on the dos equis chromosome people.

It was not clear to me that these were Ticket Chicks in the sense of promo-event-enhancing Ticket Chicks.  But it was clearly a Ticket-produced showgram.

Maybe, as someone suggested below, it's a bit -- and given some of what was said, and in particular the Texas-flavor valley-girl patois, it's not out of the question.

I tried to catch the name of the show right at the end.  But all the chicks said it in unison and I didn't catch it.  It isn't on the Ticket website.  At first I thought it was the "Happy Hour," since they called that hour by that name a couple of times, but I gather that was just a part of the show.

However, this site does try to be fair.  If this is going to be on again, I'll try to catch the whole show.  Perhaps it has some merit.  Perhaps I will learn something.  Perhaps I will discover the cure for ankylosing spondylitis.

And perhaps no one much listens to The Ticket on Sunday evenings, so the CTO was taking a flyer on something way different.  I'm not opposed to that.  And chicks are of interest to guys.  Guys say they want to know what chicks are thinking about guys.  So this maybe wasn't such a stretch.  Maybe we should give it a chance.

Early reviews by Confessors, however, are unmixedly negative:

Chicken Pillow said...


Seriously, I want to cut out my ear drums right now.

Thanks Cat.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

What in Sam Hill is going on at the station right now????? It's 7:32 pm on 12/8/13, and there's a gaggle of hick chicks talking all eat, love, and pray meets Dr. Phil "let's get real" like. This is awful. They're talking about Pam flippin' Anderson's hair. "I'm Tori and 31 and blond. I went blond from brunette last Christmas..." "Blonds are not stupid!" "It's like you need to call all your like um guy friends next. We all are gonna tell you all how to get a new girl..."
Thanks a lot, Cat. Genius move. Let's see: You have Ty, TC, Machine, Fahey, Newbury, and others. . . . .and this is how you use time that could go to a deserving JV team????? Brilliant, man. Just brilliant.
Anonymous Anonymous said...
@Chicken Pillow,
Indict me as guilty since as soon as I read your post I tuned in. That was so awful, I kept listening until a break. It is so terrible, it is nearly addictive. It was Cuban/Dallas CAN advertisement bad.

However, I wonder if it could be a bit or a test for Corby as the white noise those women are providing is EVERYTHING which he rails against on-air. But since they talk about events four days later, it might be a segment after drydock.

Back to Sunday Night Football
Anonymous Anonymous said...
Well, they've confirmed what I've always thought about a lot of DFW chicks, they're really shallow.

1. Your car is important to them. Your choice of car reflects the "real you." A white GMC pickup = Maturity.

2. Cleanliness = Maturity.

3. Smell Good. Not clean, but good. Cologne = Maturity.

4. The Right Shoes. Preferably Italian Leather or Cowboy Boots.

5. Hang out at Bars, Often.

6. Wear a buttoned-up Oxford Shirt.

7. If you are a Frat Guy, say you are not. Even though all of the above describes every Frat Guy there ever was since the late-80s. Paradoxically, being an "Independent" constitutes being a loser.

8. Compliment women. But not overly so. Don't say they're hot. It means you are superficial. It means you only like their looks, not the person herself. The Criteria stated in 1-7, is not, I repeat, is not, superficial.

Thank you, Cat, [REDACTED].
Anonymous said...
I REALLY REALLY REALLY hope this b.s. is addressed by The Musers, BaD, and THL tomorrow. I want to hear Snake go off on these motor mouth yapsters.
Anonymous Anonymous said...
This is stupid. Exactly what are these chicks qualifications to dispense with advice? What a fool's game of an endeavor this is.

Yeah.  I would really like to hear what any host thinks of this.  Only problem is, probably not a one of them heard it.  Anyone tweeting the thing so it might have come to someone's attention, like Town Crier Grubes?

Let's just remember, it's Sunday night.  A radio wasteland.  Who knows, maybe those chicks paid to do that show, like George DiGianni.  By the way, did anyone hear a sponsor for the thing?  As I said, the five minutes I heard -- I mean, I actually stared at the radio as though it had answers -- were train-wreckish, but I tuned in Ben & Skin again after the first five minutes I heard of their show, so I I'm willing to try a larger sample size.

If I remember, I'll try to tune in next week.  If anyone knows when the show started, and it's name, let me know.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

The White Elephant Approacheth

I'm going to make a real effort to keep the radio on all day tomorrow.  I've missed too much cool stuff over the years.

However, that does not relieve a single one of you from listening carefully and giving us reviews and updates of your favorite and/or cringe-inducing performances.

This morning, Craig mentioned that some P1's take the day off to listen to White Elephant Day.  Is this correct and are any of you among those lucky ones?