WGY: Re-hire Al Roney

As noted on Monday, I believe there’s money to be made as a talk radio consultant. I’m handing out some freebies to prospective clients to generate interest in my new venture; today here’s some advice for WGY:

The face of American talk radio.
Sooooooo, WGY: Don Weeks is retiring! Wow, what a career he had. That man’s a legend — but what are you going to do now? I’ll tell you what you’re going to do now, you’ll get on your knees and beg Al Roney to come back.

Sure, there are often hard feelings when you let someone go, but there’s a universal salve that heals even the deepest and most painful wounds: money. Throw enough money at him and he’ll forget all about Talk 1300. Oh, he has a contract? Bah! Once again, don’t underestimate the curative power of cash. This is no time to dawdle; once he hits the air on WGDJ this Monday it may be too late.

Roney is a sure thing. People know him, he knows the audience… and just think of the risks of bringing in someone new. WGY’s eclectic morning show is a different animal than the talk-fest Roney used to host, but he can handle it. And who wouldn’t rather do morning drive on WGY than afternoons on some crummy little pea shooter?

Remember: everybody has their price. My price is a $100 iTunes gift card and a case of Hennepin from Brewery Ommegang.

21 thoughts on “WGY: Re-hire Al Roney

  1. Seriously — would he rather be on the air in a top 3 radio station, or reading the weather forecast that Matty grabbed yesterday from weather.com? Doing the morning drive on one of America’s oldest talk radio stations, or broadcasting on location at Best Cleaners in Saratoga?

  2. You have always hated Paul and this is just a continuation of that hatred. It was a happy moment when WNYT let you go – even if it wasn’t for your inappropriate behavior. While you agree they should have fired you, you don’t agree that you’re a failure who is hateful and envious of those who WORK HARD to make it. Please go away.

  3. Not the Eye: Wow! Such anger…

    Just two things:

    1. They didn’t let me go, I left on my own accord.
    2. I don’t really care what you say about me, except maybe the hard work thing; I always worked hard.

  4. Couldn’t resist:

    Not The Eye seems very defensive with regard to Paul/1300…..maybe a sponsor (sorry I think they call them “clients”)…..or just an owner of Trustco stock…..

    I have wondered if the reason Al’s hiring by 1300 talk so long is that 810 might have been talking to him……we will never know the full story.

    I have numerous questions as to how Al can retain his independence but again he has a family to support and times are tough. I wonder Al’s position about lawyers who take work from school systems and unethically get themselves into the state retirement system….hmmmm.

  5. I doubt very much that CC is going to rehire someone they S***canned…a firing that led to acrimony and protests. I know from first hand experience that once you’re on their list, that’s that. Roney is lucky that there is a Vandenburgh around to give him another local chance. I say go with the little guy and if you’re really any good, you’ll make your mark and as we all know success is the best revenge.

  6. Bill: That’s true, but imagine the publicity — and radio loves a good stunt.

    where’s the money: I’m guessing the the lawyer subject won’t be a hot topic. Maybe people should call and ask him about it on the air during his show.

  7. I’m Rodney King. I really, really like Rob’s hard work but, as I have said here a few times, I enjoy Paul’s show too. I learn a lot (differently) from both of them. I can’t comment on those specific lawyers, mentioned above, although I do think that the topic was discussed on air at the time it happened, but I will say that I particularly enjoy the O&A lawyers when they come on. I think that they are very knowledgeable and from them I learn about some of the hot local topics. That’s hard to do on the radio anymore. I could listen to Steve Coffey all day long (so long as it wasn’t billable). He has a permanent spot on my “5 people you want to have for dinner” list. Just to be a kiss-ass, Rob is close to being on that list too. That’s not to say that Paul (or the Eye) or anyone else lacks flaws. Nobody is immune from criticism or a witty riposte.

  8. The reason why it took so long for VanDenburgh to hire Al, is that he is fearful that Al will outshine him. “TALK 1300” has quickly become “LISTEN 1300”. Paul pontificates for about four hours and gives the listeners maybe 15 minutes to talk. He feels that his views on everything are the definitive word, and he kicks anybody who disagrees off the air. He is self seving, takes advantage of his sponsors for trips, etc. and regularly has his “partners” on the air to talk about things without having any callers challenge them.
    That having been said, I am sure the Al Rooney will help with the ratings. He is a professional, who never should have been let go by WGY.

  9. @11:To be fair, those same 4 callers aren’t exactly going hungry, seeing as they blather on every other show during the day.

  10. Being somewhat new to this blog was just wondering if BL in post #9 when he referred to “Rob” meant “this Rob” or “big Rob” or “little Rob”……I think some of these Rob’s have conflicting interests in a radio station and a bank!!……even though Paul V would want you to believe he “owns” the radio station he is actually a minority shareholder (along with the lawyers, not O&A, and the Saturday finacial guys) and then there is “little Robbie” & “big Robbie” who(through a separate corporation) own something like 60%; at least that is what the local papers reported when the station was set up.

    I still wonder if Al will be able to truely speak his mind or is he getting in over his head with the info-mercial theme. Would Al dare comment about Ford’s receiving $ millions of loan “guarantees” . Ford has cleverly said it received no bailout money. Ford is technically correct, they rejected actual tarp money and the government intervention that went with it; but, they were able to set up loans from the banks with the aid of the government guarantees. Interestingly when Chrysler was in trouble in the 1980’s it’s “bailout” was in the form of loan “guarantees”. No doubt Ford did a great job compared to the other car companies and they continue doing a great job even while marketing some murky “bailout” info.

    I don’t mind having a little fun at 1300’s expense (the truth usually comes out) but my real thought is I’m happy that Al is back on the air. I just want to be sure that when he is telling me someting it is from the heart and not the wallet.

  11. Apologies. When I said Rob, I only meant Rob Madeo. On the other point, I always say that I own my house, knowing full well that my wife and my mortgage company may hold a differing view. I’m unclear, though, as to whether there is any special significance, other than the numerous on-air plaudits to Trustco (which I guess could be considered a possible COI), to Vandenburgh’s percent of ownership. Is it bad that he’s not full owner?

  12. where’s the money: Good points.

    A well-educated media consumer needs to be aware that what he is listening to may be influenced by advertisers. At the end of the day, talk radio hosts are not there to be honest crusaders for the public good, they are there to make a profit.

    Chuck: That ownership statement reveals some interesting things about the station, not the least of which are the connections to Siena College. Not saying that’s a BAD thing, just interesting.

  13. TO: BL,
    No apologies please, I write things often times to stimulate thought as it seems the idea of “critical thinking” has gone by the boards.
    I fully understand your comment about your home but my life in the business world has taught me that ownership and the amount of ownership can be a significant thing in that business world. Regarding Paul V I think it is just his ego at work. I would be critical of the correctness of his statements as he holds himself out as almost a business expert. Actually he is a “shareholder/stockowner” in the corporation but additionally he is an employee/officer/President. If I own 100 shares of GE do I own GE? – not really GE the company but I do own GE stock.

    Typically if you start a company and don’t have all the money to do it or you don’t want to risk your life’s savings starting a small corporation is a good way to go provided you can find people willing to invest. To me it seems unusual to sell of more than 50% of a small company like we see here. Once you drop below 50% ownership you generally lose control of the company. As long as everybody gets along that is fine but if a minority shareholder wants to take the business in a certain direction and the majority shareholder (over 50%) dosen’t want to do it then the majority shareholder wins the discussion. There is more to it based on bylaws etc.

    So -COI – well lets just say for the sake of discussion you start a small tv broadcasting business and you happen to know the President of a prominent local company and you persuade him to invest with you and he invests so much more cash than you that he owns 75% and you own 25%. To get started on a day to day basis lets say you need advertising revenue from a sponser. What better sponser that your prominent “partner”. He of course must be carefull as his responsibilities as President of his regular company includes maximizing profits to those shareholders so he needs to be mindful of all federal regulations and can’t shift the advertising around to just benifit himself. This can create a real moral/legal dilema. So, what if your friend sets up another company that he owns/controls and has that company buy the 75% interest in your company instead of him buying the 75% personally – does that change any potential conflicts?, i really don’t know but I do know it is an interesting question.

    One step further, another small investor who happens to be a financial guy buys a small piece of your tv station and also sets up a show to help people with thier money. Now when he gets asked about the financial shape of the prominent local company where the President is indirectly the major shareholder in your tv company what is he suppose to do/say?? Again I’m not sure, just find it to be an interesting question.

    I haven’t explained this well; but back to AL. Truely he was hired to make a profit and the extent to which he may be influenced by advertisers/owners we will probably never know. In fact there may be no direct influence but there could always be that subliminal aspect that sucks you in.

    In any case things are what they are, just undestand what you read and hear and be very careful what you believe.

  14. I’ll tell you what’s interesting: that Talk 1300 gets the Siena basketball games while two station owners (Girvin/McCormick) are on the board of trustees at Siena. Now THAT is interesting.

  15. I’ll post here what Talk 1300 would not approve for their blog — even though I was well within the terms of use.

    Roney is an unsophisticated lightweight and could only succeed in a small town market. Too bad we had to lose a big city talent like Dan Lynch. I won’t be tuning in to the mediocrity.

    More and more, listening to Paul’s show is like listening in on a bunch of cigar smoking, aging frat boys yuck it up. The Talk 1300 crony chat is getting tiresome and the shameless plugging of TrustCo is especially unbearable. I’ll just tune into Free Beer and Hot Wings.

  16. Al’s show not the peppy get you up in the morning schlock type of show, may not be suitable for morning drive time. At least he managed to get Dan Lynch off the air, an admirable accomplishment.

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