Namesake radio-show host Mikey Esparza fired amidst flurry of speculation as to why.
  • Namesake radio-show host Mikey Esparza fired amidst flurry of speculation as to why.
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“They hired him to improve the morning-show ratings and he ended up bringing them down like a big anchor.” That’s how one employee at a competing modern-rock station described Mike Esparza’s two years at FM 94/9. The Mikey Show was yanked off the air in a whirlpool of bad ratings, on-air rants about competitors, and negative reactions from fans who liked 94/9 for its music, not its talk. Esparza was told he would no longer be part of the Mikey Show on March 7.

There were many unanswered questions about the separation. What is known is that Esparza had about ten months left on a three-year contract that paid him an estimated $300,000 yearly, according to one inside source. If the station, owned by Lincoln Financial Media, maintains Esparza was fired for cause, they would not have to pay him the balance of his salary. General manager Rick Jackson would not comment on why Esparza was released, but he did say that the contract was no longer in effect.

Last month, morning sports-talk host Scott Kaplan was fired by AM station XX 1090 for calling a female sports reporter “Sasquatch.” Some speculated that Esparza’s acidic tirades got him fired. Last year, 91X program director Garrett Capone was the target of on-air character-assassination slurs, accusing Capone of beating up special-needs kids in the classroom.

But Jackson seemed to dash that theory. “It had nothing to do with [Esparza’s] on-air performance.”

A Facebook fan wrote that she hoped Esparza’s departure wasn’t health-related. Esparza admitted frequently on air that he had been a substance abuser. On his Mikey Show blog, Esparza wrote these two entries last month: “I think I may be in a mid-life crisis of epic proportions,” and, “I’m going through what professionals call a rough patch.” Jackson said that issue “had nothing to do” with Esparza’s termination.

The fate of the three remaining sidekicks was unclear. Jackson said last Friday that, starting Monday, former Mikey Show cast members Steve Woods, Lauren O’Brien, and Jay Isbell would be joined by program director Garett Michaels and that those four would work as an ensemble for an indefinite period. He says a permanent decision about mornings may take awhile.

The big change is that the station that brands itself with “It’s about the music” will start playing music in the mornings again, spinning four to eight songs an hour. Jackson says the listener response on the phones and via email was evenly split between those who liked Esparza’s removal and those who did not.

Whatever triggered the firing, Jackson says, “We were not prepared for this.”

Even Esparza’s arrival at FM 94/9 in January of 2010 was tumultuous. It was no secret that 94/9 was looking to improve its morning numbers, which were not on par with the rest of the day. The Mikey Show at Rock 105.3 was regularly number one with listeners aged 18–34. Working without an agent, insiders say Esparza got Lincoln Financial to commit to pay more than $1 million a year to have Esparza and his four sidekicks at Rock 105 pick up and move across town. But what Esparza failed to tell Lincoln Financial was that he could not deliver his sidekicks. When Esparza told the four that he had set up this deal to jump ship, they all told Esparza they weren’t interested and stayed at Rock 105, where they called their program The Show. This left Esparza scrambling to put together a new Mikey Show lineup. Insiders say a new, less-lucrative contract was drawn up. None of the new Mikey Show cast members had prior on-air experience. Esparza picked all his Mikey Show sidekicks at both stations.

The monthly Arbitron ratings were not good. In fact, some months in 2011 the Mikey Show did not even make the top 20 with listeners aged 18–34. It is thought that many who loved 94/9’s eclectic playlist were driven away from the station by Esparza's act. Rolling Stone said in 2006 that FM 94/9 was one of four stations that “don’t suck.”

Jackson did say that there are no plans to switch 94/9’s music format.

The Mikey Show took over the Rock 105 morning slot in 2004, replacing Howard Stern who segued to satellite radio.

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Comments

DCH March 14, 2012 @ 12:52 p.m.

Ever just write an article based on speculation and hearsay from a competing radio station? Journalism at its finest.

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LVS March 14, 2012 @ 1:36 p.m.

Wow, pot shots and innuendo.....need to better use your "pen Ken"! It has not been released by LF, or Rick Jackson the reason for Mike no longer being with 94.9. To report "A Facebook fan wrote that she hoped Esparza’s departure wasn’t health-related." All of Mike's true friends and fans know that he just had gallbladder surgery and that is the reference!!!!!! You sir make it appear that he relapsed without checking your facts!!!! Shame on you....this is journalism at it's worst!!!!

Mike took 94.9's ratings from 16th place to 6th!!!! Check the Arbitron ratings and Rick Jackson's statements! While the music lovers of this were not happy about a talk show being on their station, without the Mikey show, 94.9 would have died. Now they lose more than 16,000 listeners who followed Mike to that station....think it will survive now? Highly unlikely. The music is horrible and rotated. Even their own listeners are not happy right now with the temporary set up of music play!

"On Air Rants"?????? Never once did Mikey "rant" about anything. You just wrote a rant that is libelous, without merit.....who is bringing down the San Diego Reader like a big anchor now???? Go back to journalism school because you obviously did not learn how to accurately report a story!

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M1_12Gage March 14, 2012 @ 1:59 p.m.

Sir, you have the journalism skills of a high school freshman. You pawn off heresay and rumors as if they were fact, and that is NOT good journalism. It is well known that you never liked The Mikey Show, or the people on the show, because you wrote an article 2 years ago about Steven Woods that was just as jaded as this one. Good journalists do not take sides, and you obviously use your podium as an opportunity to tear apart Mike Esparza and his team any chance that you get. You should be ashamed of yourself, and the San Diego Reader should be ashamed for even allowing you to post this trash. You use someone from 105.3 as a "source", when you are WELL AWARE of the history they have with Mikey. OF COURSE they are not gonna say nice things about him. They are the COMPETITION and they are not cordial after the breakup they had 2 1/2 years ago with Mikey. This is absolutely ridiculous, and anyone with half a brain can see right through your one-sided "reporting" (very loose sense of the word). I find it very ammusing that directly about the are where we are invited to "Post a comment", we are advised that "We (the San Diego Reader) prohibit profanity, libel, spam, racial epithets, and the harrassment and abuse of others", when that is EXACTLY what you have just done with this "article". All of us know that you are reporting false "facts" and heresay, because FM 94.9 is REFUSING to answer any questions or say what happened to Mikey. You have NO PROOF that he was fired. Even in your own article you say that Rick Jackson said they were "not prepared for this." If they were going to fire Mikey they would have had a plan in place, or at least in the work. There is no proof that Mikey was "fired". How can you report that with a clear conscience? Oh yeah, its because you dont have one, and this article is clear proof of that. I hope the S.D. Reader wakes up and prohibits you from ever posting an article again, because really all they are doing is making themselves, and you, look like a fool.

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crashandburn45 March 14, 2012 @ 2:03 p.m.

Bad ratings? Mikey was voted best radio personality in San Diego on FOX 5 "The R Factor" contest in November. You sir have an axe to grind. I have read all your other articles regarding Mikey. Nice reporting.

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Jay Allen Sanford March 14, 2012 @ 2:07 p.m.

I'm a little troubled by the implications of placing these three seemingly (even probably) unrelated observations all together in one 'graph, followed by the (source uncited) quote from General manager Rick Jackson:

1 - "A Facebook fan wrote that she hoped Esparza’s departure wasn’t health-related."

2 - "Esparza admitted frequently on air that he had been a substance abuser."

3 - "On his Mikey Show blog, Esparza wrote these two entries last month: “I think I may be in a mid-life crisis of epic proportions,” and, “I’m going through what professionals call a rough patch.”

4 - "Jackson said that issue “had nothing to do” with Esparza’s termination."

Was Jackson's quote a direct response to Mr. Leighton's query? (presumably about "that issue," tho WHICH issue is ALSO unstated, and thus unclear - is the issue Mikey's "mid-life crises," his "rough patch," or his on-air references to "substance abuse")

OR was Jackson's quote taken from an official radio station statement about the situation? I have no idea. The article says "General manager Rick Jackson would not comment on why Esparza was released, but he did say that the contract was no longer in effect," and yet this statement is followed by what seems to be SEVERAL quotes from Jackson that SEEM to reference "why Esparza was released." So how and where were those quotes obtained?

Running all four statements together (at least three of them mere observations gleaned from reading online and/or listening to the show) makes it look like it's all about substance abuse.

The lack of clarity as to WHERE Jackson's quote come from, or even WHAT the quote is referencing, makes for a muddy report indeed. This one should have ripened a bit before being served with a few more facts.

Perhaps Mr. Leighton can follow up with subsequent reports about this on the Reader's music blog Jam Session, where he first broke this local news. No space limitations for Reader staff blogs (and it's entirely possibly this Blurt's imprecise and irresponsibly speculative tone is more the result of available Blurt space than the reporter's inattention).

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M1_12Gage March 14, 2012 @ 2:18 p.m.

Besides the facts that I already posted about your "article", you also stated that Mikey had an "on-air rant" against Garrett Capone about beating up "special needs kids in the classroom." What you fail to report is that at that time, Mikey and his show were running a 28hour show to raise money for Rady's Children's Hospital and autism awareness, and 91X (Garrett Capone) was advertising and running their own campaign directly AGAINST the 28hour show. They were advertising that they would play nothing but music during those 28 hours, and stating "who wants to listen to talk for 28 hours anyway". They were competing against a good cause, instead of joining forces with Mikey for one day to raise money for children with autism. Mikey's son has autism, and Mikey took it as a personal offense that they would run advertising against him on that day, which sparked his anger on the air....OF COURSE! Mr. Leighton, PLEASE, for the sake of journalism, go take some courses at a local community college and learn what good reporting consists of. Because you sir, only report what you want people to know, and not the facts. You make me nauseous...seriously.

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Ken Leighton March 14, 2012 @ 3:35 p.m.

The "speculation" was an honestly labeled statement that many in the industry have said over and over. The Mikey show certainly had its fans, but that the mix of the show an the station was a huge mistake. There was no "speculation or inuendo"...it was a statement that you can accept or reject. It is a verifiable fact that 949's overall rating are lower since January 2010 when Mikey came on board. Whoever said that above that Mikey took the ratings up is misinformed. The most recent overall ratings show that 91X is in 14th place, Rock 105 in 16th and 949 23rd. On what planet does that not support the other DJ's comment?

But besides that, here are some SPECIFIC MORNING RATINGS from a few months ago that maybe you were not aware of:

September 2011, AM Drive (M-F 6am-10am)

Men and women 18-34 91X 4th place Rock 105 14th place FM 94/9 24th place

Men & women 25-54 91X 6th place Rock 105 20th place FM 94/9 21st place

Keep in mind 949 is owned by an insurance company who would not terminate an employee contract unless they had a good reason. Jackson said Esparza is no longer under contract even though he was inked until December. If it was a mutual decision, I would imagine both sides would come out and say something. 949 won't talk specifics and Mike has been silent.

Mikey numerous times on the air talked about his past with substance abuse. I think any reasonable person would bring that up in a situation like this. Jackson said it was not the case. So why the bitch?

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Ken Leighton March 14, 2012 @ 3:36 p.m.

PART 2 Yes it is true that the Mikey facebook page has 16000 friends. But the arbitron ratings are what counts.

Hate to tell you M1_12 but just because 91X had a commercial free weekend does not give Esparza license to through those slurs out there. That was a degenerate rant (audio files exist) that there is no excuse for. Even if Mikey is your personal radio savior, you just don't do stuff like that.

Regarding "taking sides" not sure what that was all about. I spoke to Rick Jackson and would have loved to speak with Mr. Esparza. If it seems like I was repelled by what Esparza said about Garrett Capone, well, I guess you might be right on that. If you are Don Imus you cant say "nappy headed hos" and if your Rush Limbaugh you can't call a lady a "slut." Heck, here in San Diego you can't even call a woman a "sasquatch." Do you get that? If you Esparza can get away with because he tells us all how Christian he is....don't think so.

To Mr Sanford, yes that was a direct response from him to my statement to him that there was a lot of speculation that substance abuse was thought by many to be cause of the separation. I think any reasonable person would think that those statements and facts are germane to each other. Hence the question to Jackson, and hence his answer. Do you get it Jay?

Regarding the Fox TV R Factor...They reported that The Mikey Show was the most popular in San Diego because they had, like, 700,000 votes. Who's to say 10 people couldn't 7,000 times. You get the idea.

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Ken Leighton March 14, 2012 @ 3:56 p.m.

Part 3 It needs to be pointed out again....even though Esparza's bile-filled attacks were over the top, Rick Jackson said the separation was NOT due to anything he he said on the air. Yet, I think it is fair game to ask that question.

Hey something I'm missing here...If Esparza can talk about his substance abuse on air, why am I taking "potshots" or putting out "innuendo" if I do. You Mikey fans need to do better. This was a newsworthy event and these topics were all germane to this very peculiar event. And trust me, there were rumors and innuendo out there that was not used for this story.

And although I think Mikey's legacy as a rating's earner (or not) are appropriate to bring up as he exits the station, I am certain bad ratings could not have been a legal reason for Lincoln Financial Media to terminate his contract.

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M1_12Gage March 14, 2012 @ 7:39 p.m.

PART 1 - Mr. Leighton, I appreciate and respect the fact that you took the time to respond and attempt to back up your statements. But it still remains that in your orginal article, you discuss the rumors and inuendo as if they were facts. You state that he was "fired", and yet you yourself do not even know if that is true. How do you know that he did not have a clause in his contract that allowed him to walk away, or get out of the contract, if the station attempted to change his format? He has stated many times, on the air, that he runs a talk show; he will never play music during his show. It is obvious that 94.9 wanted to get music back in the mornings, even if it was a "hybrid" show that had both talk and music. Doesn't it seem likely that they told him to change the format, and he walked away? But to bring up in your article that perhaps his "mouth" got him into trouble (behind the scenes), and that he was fired for it, is just completely unfounded and there is nothing to back that up. In my opinion, it just shows your dislike for him. Christians, especially outspoken ones, are targets for ridicule. Because people dont like Mikey and his beliefs, when something like this happens, those people come out of the woodwork and just start slinging trash and garbage. Im not saying that you are "one of those people", but your article would definitely lead me to believe that. Your responses dont really provide any definitive backup for the information that you reported in your article as "fact". The bottom line is that no one knows what happened. Mikey could be sick, or he may have personal family issues that forced his early retirement. He may have asked the station to keep quiet because he doesnt want the whole world to know about his personal problems (which he did briefly discuss in a blog entry, and you did report on in your article). But because of your bias towards him, you draw unfair conclusions that maybe he is struggling with substance abuse. You stated that he had discussed on the air that he has struggled with substance abuse in the past (that is a fact), and immediately in the next sentence you discuss his blog entries (another fact), and yet your unfairly put those 2 things together which would lead a reader to believe that his personal problems were due to substance abuse. The way you wrote the article, and claimed rumors as facts without actually stating that all of this is rumors, leads to the obvious conclusion that you didnt like Mikey or the Mikey Show...which is fine, everyone has their opinion, but its not fair or right to use your position as a "journalist" (or glorified blogger, and I do not mean that in a disrespectful way), to slam him with rumors and information that may or may not be true. I agree that the ratings were down, although that does not really reflect anywhere NEAR the amount of people that listened to the Mikey Show (via podcasts, the 94/9 app, and online streaming).

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M1_12Gage March 14, 2012 @ 7:39 p.m.

PART 2 - With regards to your comments about 91X and Garrett Capone, in my baised opinion, Mikey had every right to have the rant against them. There IS such a thing sir as rightious anger, and speaking out against things that are not right. Now, in this situation maybe what is "right" is a matter of opinion, so that point can not really be argued. What can be argued is your slanted view against Mikey, and claiming rumors as facts. Thank you again for your response, it does show that you care about your article and at least you have the guts to attempt to back it up. I respect that, although I am sorry, I really cant respect the article. Those of us that know Mikey, and care about him and the others on the Mikey Show, have taken this very seriously and are genuinely upset and worried about Mike. If he deserved the article that you wrote, then I wouldnt be able to say anything against it, but he doesn't. This just does not reflect the type of man that he is, and all of the lives that he has touched. His Friday "testimony" (which last only a few minutes at the end of the show, and is all about helping people with substance abuse) has actually prevented people from committing suicide. There have been several people call in and say that they were about to end their lives, they heard the testimony on the air, and they got help. Did you know that? Have you ever reported on that? That to me sounds like a newsworthy event.

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M1_12Gage March 14, 2012 @ 7:44 p.m.

Oh, I am sorry...one other thing. Your last paragraph of your last response discusses the "R Factor". It was impossible to vote more than once. I know, because many of us tried and discussed the fact that we were not able to!!! lol. We were only about to vote once every round, so the 700,000 number that you quoted was probably the total amount at the very end, with all of the rounds added up. But even that to me does not sound correct. The website showed the number of votes that each competitor had, and I remember he only had several thousand votes per round (enough to have him win every round), but there is no way they all added up to 700,000.

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Ken Leighton March 14, 2012 @ 8:38 p.m.

Dear M1 First, how about you tell us who you are. You know who I am. Second I did find out if he was fired or not. Let's leave it at that out of respect. I'm not sure that 949 necessarily wanted to get music back in mornings. I don't think they know exactly what they want to do. Chris Cantore is telling people that 94/9 called him up last week and asked him to do mornings but he turned them down. If you did not hear Mikey's rant against Capone you should. It is awfully foul. Completely unacceptable. Also, I don't dislike Mikey. It's just that there are different types of radio. There is hip radio (949 before Mikey and NPR) and there is hack radio (DSC, Mikey and Stern, 1090). Mikey is hack. And that is fine. But mixing ultra hack and ultra hip proved to be a marriage made in hell. It was weak that 949 brass thought they could mix water with oil and end up with gold. They ended up with another substance. I stand corrected on R Factor. And by the way. I will absolutely will be the first to admit that even though the Mikey/949 marriage was all wrong, it is clear the Mikey show had much more listeners than Arbitron gave him credit for. And that is too bad. I mean that. I never brought up his testimony. But since you did, I happen to think he would have done a lot more Christian good if he just walked the walk and did not ram his 15-minute testimony down our throats. If I am wrong on this, please explain. Hey and guess what? "Personal family issues" did not cause this separation. Are you kidding? LFM is an insurance company. Do you think they could get away with severing his contract if he was consumed by struggles with his kids or his parents ? Ummmm...don't think so. It is 2012. I think your ongoing support of Mikey is commendable. He connected with you deeply. That represents good radio. And I know, based on what you said and what I have learned, that you are not Mikey. But I'd sure like it if everybody else would step up.

If I had an agenda it was that Mikey (a proven ratings winner with his old crew) would not come to 94/9 and bring that station down to a point where it would change format. In my solo opinion, it appears that could happen now. For god's sake, Swami left 94/9 for internet radio! That is a bloody crime against nature.

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lunchbox23 March 14, 2012 @ 10:02 p.m.

Don't bother trying to reason with the mikey show fans, they laugh at facts and logic that go against their leaders views. He'll probably spin another sob story about how he is the victim AGAIN and everyone turned on him. The guy is just poison and drama. Worst thing is people buy into his act, he's probably laughing about it all the way to the bank in his BMW

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M1_12Gage March 14, 2012 @ 10:29 p.m.

Lunchbox, did you actually listen to the Mikey Show, or are you just talking based upon things that you have read online. If so, then your opinion has no bearing on this issue and is not based upon your own experiences with Mikey. And just to provide you with a little bit of fact, Mikey takes the blame for his part in everything that happened at 105.3, which is something that the others on "The Show" have never done......hold on a second, now it all makes sense. You must be a listener of "The Show".

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lunchbox23 March 14, 2012 @ 10:40 p.m.

I did my best, when he wasn't belittling others and going on about his substance abuse and christianity. Got sick of it eventually. If you actually talk to him about it, which I have extensively, he still blames his old cast mates. He pawns them off to his listeners as turn coats when in reality it was his greed that dismantled the show. He left rock 105.3 because he wanted more money, that's about it. I listened to both new shows and at one point the show was funnier. Now it's a hybrid of music and talk with no substance so I went back to mikey and now that's gone too. Just music for me now until a good all talk show comes back. also "Oh god you listen to the show!" get over yourself

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M1_12Gage March 15, 2012 @ 9:37 a.m.

Hey man, that is cool that you listened for yourself, and came to your own conclusions. I wont argue you with you there...everyone is entitled to their own opinions. I dont necessarily agree with how you feel things went down at 105.3, but again, all we can do is hear what they tell us over the radio, and what we read on the internet, and draw our own conclusions. The only reason I said that I thought you listened to "The Show" was because most of the ones that stayed with them have strong feelings against Mikey; and of course they side with the old crew when it comes to what happened during "the breakup".

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lunchbox23 March 16, 2012 @ 2:02 a.m.

Well thank you for being so respectful in your reply and I'll do my best to follow suit. I have talked to Mikey about the situation, as I said. Though in different words he did say he left to find better contracts for his team, which is fine and dandy, hell even ambitious. What I hear from the other side of the table from four people is the story that Mikey did this unbeknownst to them. So they did the smart thing (economy was/is pretty bad) and resigned with rock 105.3 . I feel if Mikey hadn't rejected his original CC contract he'd still be there and the original (best imo) Mikey show would still be around. Anyways after this all went down, Mikey quickly turned his story into "they betrayed me and I'm the victim". I understand his pain but he has to understand he can't go behind peoples backs and discuss their livelihoods. Even now M1's are debating if the same thing happened and already calling the new cast turn coats and traitors. It's bewildering to me. Either way I hope they do well for themselves because I know Mikey will and I did enjoy his replacement, Costa, on rock 105.3.

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M1_12Gage March 16, 2012 @ 8:08 a.m.

Lunchbox, everything that you said is fairly accurate. The only thing is that Mikey has admitted that he made some serious mistakes during that time. They had just recently fired their agent, so Mikey was negotiating on behalf of the entire team. He has admitted over and over again that his mistake was not talking to the team more, and keeping them appraised of the situation. He went to other stations, negotiated for the ENTIRE team, and then went back to 105.3 to give them a chance to counteroffer (which is normal practice in radio contract negotiation). What they told him was that the offer was NO LONGER on the table, he was NOT welcomed back, and that the rest of the team had already re-signed with Clear Channel. What came out after the fact, was the the rest of the team no longer wanted Mikey with them. They were tired of having to "play by his rules" and keep the show clean. It was the Mikey Show, so he was the final say in everything that happened, and the rest of the team was not willing to do that anymore. They wanted to take the show in a different direction, so they took the opportunity that the contract negotiation process offered for them, and they ran with it.

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lunchbox23 March 16, 2012 @ 4:09 p.m.

But don't you think it's slightly hypocritical for someone like him to go look for more money else where? He had it made at 105.3. Obviously everyone else liked the money they were getting. My only gripe is that greed was the deciding factor and nothing else. I don't really blame the other cast mates, the show was a bit too clean near it's end. I wish he didn't make those mistakes but it's his own fault and I don't see a reason to give him sympathy or to blame the other show mates like most 'm1's' have.

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M1_12Gage March 16, 2012 @ 6:49 p.m.

I dont think there is anything wrong with trying to get more money. The man has a family to take care of...just like any of us that would try to get a raise. At the time, they were the definite #1 show in San Diego, and (I dont remember the exact numbers) they were not making #1 money. He was negotiating for the whole show, not just himself (which was a big issue with the "others"). But his real goal at the time was to force Clear Channel to meet or exceed the offer from another station so that he could stay on 105.3, but of course it ended up blowing up in his face.

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lunchbox23 March 18, 2012 @ 3:33 a.m.

I don't really see the point in asking for more money when you live in a big house, you drive a nice car and you and your family are well taken care of. Greed is one of the 'deadly' sins. He was greedy and it goes against everyone he stands for. Negotiating for other people is illegal without their written consent. HE tried to have his cake and eat it too and all he was left with was a lesser deal at a different radio station with new people. He can spin the story how he likes but that is the bottom line. he got greedy and he screwed up. But for some reason everyone blames the rest of the 1053 crew and I have no idea why? Because they kept their amazing jobs? Because they didn't trust some verbal agreement? Why? It is beyond me.

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M1_12Gage March 14, 2012 @ 10:22 p.m.

PART 1 - Mr. Leighton, again, I appreciate you taking the time to respond and providing a little more insight into your initial article. As for my name, I have no problems with telling you...my name is Mike Gage. I used my M1 name just for solidarity with Mikey and the Mikey Show. I have been an avid listener of the Mikey Show since he first went to mornings after Howard Stern parted ways with Clear Channel (or however it may have happened...I dont know all of the facts about that). I am not just the casual listener, so as I said earlier, maybe I am biased towards him, but I also keep an open mind. There were definitely some things I didnt like about the show, at times, but there were FAR more things that I did like. As for the "rant" against Capone, yes, in fact I did hear it, live on the radio. In fact, I stayed up for the entire 28 hour show and listened to the entire thing, live on my radio. Like I said, I am not just your casual listener, I am a diehard fan. That is the thing about us real M1's...the Mikey Show, and Mikey himself, was a real part of our lives. Not that he was my "Jesus", or my fearless religious leader....no, he, and the rest of the show, were like family; and when you care about family, you want to know what is going on with them, and that is what the Mikey Show always did. They made us a part of their lives. That's what sets them apart and makes them different from every other morning show in the country. I may sound crazy, but trust me I am not. I have a good job and am well educated; you may not even understand what I am saying, but he was just a big part of our lives, and we care about what happens to him. To address your comment about you know whether he was fired or not, honestly, that definitely piqued my interest. There is a very serious legal issue there, with a gag order in place. So if someone at the station is leaking that information then that could be a real problem. If you are lying, well that is something entirely different (and I have no reason to believe you would lie about that).

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M1_12Gage March 14, 2012 @ 10:23 p.m.

PART 2 - You mention about the different types of radio, and I TOTALLY get that. Trust me, we felt that when he first came over to 94.9. Those listeners gave him and us fans a beating on the Facebook pages. But you really gotta keep in mind, that 94.9 (Lincoln Financial Media) brought him over! Its not like he forced himself upon them and into their morning slot. They brought him in an attempt to "change it up" and bring up their morning ratings (as you obviously know already). So if there is anyone to blame, it is LFM themselves, not Mikey. For some reason or another, it just didnt work. I guess most of the people that like rock music and 105.3 stayed with "The Show". But those of us that follow Mikey, for Mikey, came over with him, but I guess it wasnt just enough of us. I know one issue was that they did not advertise him hard enough (away from their airwaves). As for "ramming his 15 minute testimony down our throats", I 120% disagree with that. Everyone has options and choices; they can change the channel for those 15 minutes. So there is definitely no "ramming" anywhere when it comes to radio. Everyone can change it or put on their ipod's for that time. But it's more than that. It wasn't just a testimony, it was Mikey's story. Just out of curiousity, did you ever hear it? I'm just wondering...not trying to throw it in your face if you didn't. He would discuss his struggles with self esteem and substance abuse, and then he would say he found Jesus. That is the ONLY time he would mention it, so it really was the opposite of "ramming". He clearly would state that it was his freedom from addictions. He then would invite anyone else suffering from addiction or self esteem issues to check out the Mikey Show website where there were links for people to seek help. I REALLY dont understand how ANYONE can find something wrong with that. Mikey was different. Thats what made him special.

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M1_12Gage March 14, 2012 @ 10:25 p.m.

PART 3 - He sincerely cared about people and wanted to help people (which he did). And this was not all that he would do in the community, he just didnt talk about it very much. He would talk in churches and tell his story, and he had a campaign called "BeDifferent" that was aimed at reminding people to treat each other with respect. I encourage you to go back and listen to the very first episode of the Mikey Show, on 1 Feb 2010. In the first 20 minutes or so, he discusses the 105.3 breakup, and you should hear how nice he is to those that stabbed him in the back (and I mean not just signing the new contract without telling him, but the stuff they said about him as well). Then near the end of the episode that day he has some of the old 94.9 listeners call in, and they just BASH him. You should hear how he handles it with such grace, and actually apologizes to them for the way that he used to be, and explains how different he is now and invites them to give him a chance. Come on man, Mikey is such a good human being. It's a disgrace how people are treating him. I dont blame you; maybe you just really dont know what kind of man that he is. But maybe if you take a little while to find out, you can write a different kind of article that maybe discusses how good of a human being he is, and that he doesnt deserve the beating he has taken. I would be more than willing to provide you with old podcasts (including the first episode), and any first hand information that you might like as a witness to the change that he made in people's lives. And ok, I see your point about the "personal family issues", although you never know how serious it might be. If it is serious enough I could see that LFM would let him out of his contract, but maybe I am being naive to the facts. I do hope though that is not the case. We wish nothing but the best for Mikey. Again, thanks for the additional information. I only wish you had included it in the initial article. I mean come on, even your title was jaded.."Take a Hikey, Mikey". Really? How can you honestly say that you have nothing against Mikey with a title of the article like that. Your article just sounded very one-sided, and maybe you do have some inside information. Maybe you could have included that without giving any names or specifics. If that is true, then you are the only person in all of San Diego with that information; because to the rest of us, the article seems to be only based upon rumors.

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Dave Rice March 15, 2012 @ 10:38 p.m.

I've got plenty to say on this, but for the most part I'm going to keep quiet and just watch the carnage ensue. But I've got to add one thing.

M1_12Gage - while you seem very well-versed in radio, or at least how it pertains to Mikey, I've got to clue you in a bit on how print media works. Writers write stories. Editors pare them down to fit space requirements and make the final decisions on what content holds the most value (we get a little more leeway online, where 'ink' is free - compare the Reader blogs to what ends up in the magazine and you'll find the online articles a bit wordier). They also write headlines that are meant to draw attention to a story. Don't throw Ken under the bus if you don't like his headline for being too provocative - it was written by someone else to pique your interest in the text that follows. And it appears obvious that the editor here accomplished that goal.

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M1_12Gage March 14, 2012 @ 10:25 p.m.

PART 4 - Also, I was serious about providing you with any information you would like to get a different viewpoint of Mikey. Many of us M1's stay closely connected and we could provide you with a lot of great information about what Mikey has done in our lives, and the affect he has had on many, many people. It might make for a good article. It sure would be nice for somebody to see our side of it and provide Mikey with some positive publicity, because from our view on this side of the field, he is not deserving of this terrible slamming he is taking. Thanks for taking the time to read my responses.

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hmmmm March 15, 2012 @ 9:47 a.m.

I think he needs to go back for much more basic schooling than Community College!

Ken Leighton:

"Regarding the Fox TV R Factor...They reported that The Mikey Show was the most popular in San Diego because they had, like, 700,000 votes. Who's to say 10 people couldn't 7,000 times. You get the idea."

1) First of all, ",like,". In what world is this grammatically okay. A journalist should not be THAT person, who types like he talks. Strike one!

2) Second, "...10 people couldn't 7,000 times." We'll just assume you meant "couldn't vote 7,000 times." But strike two!

3) Third (and my favorite), 10 x 7,000 = 700,000??? I mean, at least if you're bad at math, a calculator can save you some embarrassment. So strike three!

I would say fifth, maybe sixth grade would take you...

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AaronBaker March 15, 2012 @ 11:55 a.m.

This Ken character is a freaking idiot...

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Ken Leighton March 15, 2012 @ 1:43 p.m.

Hey guys, if you want to read another article that came out today about this please read http://www.nctimes.com/entertainment/columnists/dotinga/dotinga-mikey-makes-an-exit-from-fm/article_b95105a9-2004-5ed9-9b03-61f0d291a900.html

Writer's name is Randy Dotinga. Are you now going to spend your daytime hours calling him an idiot? He pretty much says the same thing as we did.

Also, regarding the R Factor, the thing was set up by brackets over several weeks, like March Madness. Anyway, you could vote once a week online per email address, but if you bothered to create 50 email addresses you could vote 50 times per week per person. And if you got the other four members of the team to do the same thing, you got yourself a nice pool of votes.

It was a great way for Fox 5 to get radio stations to get their listeners to connect with Fox 5. Good work Fox 5! Mikey won nothing for winning that "contest." It certainly didn't help him keep on the air.

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M1_12Gage March 15, 2012 @ 2:35 p.m.

Ken, that is cool that you (or your friend) got in touch with them to get the scoop on the R Factor. I HIGHLY doubt that very many people would have taken the time to create that many different email accounts. Mikey won by a very large margin. I am one of the biggest fans of his show, and even I didnt take the time to create multiple email accounts, and then create multiple accounts on the Fox website, to vote more than once. Thats a lot of work that most people wouldnt take the time to do, and Mikey did win by a large margin every time. You yourself even acknowledged the fact that there were MANY more listeners that were fans of the show than what the Arbitron rating showed, thanks to ipod/ipad apps, online streaming, and podcasts. That Fox 5 contest really displayed the true following that Mikey had, and still has.

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M1_12Gage March 15, 2012 @ 2:41 p.m.

And Mr. Leighton, the difference between that article and the article that you wrote, is that Mr. Dotinga did not claim rumors to be facts, like you did. He said it was still unclear what happened, while you basically came right out and said Mikey was fired. Mr. Dotinga kept his article a little more "middle of the road" than you did. He was still a little slanted against Mikey with his talk about Christianity and religion, but it did not give me a sense of real dislike of Mikey like your article did.

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M1_12Gage March 15, 2012 @ 2:46 p.m.

Wait a minute, I just re-read this post. Are you suggesting in the last paragraph that Mikey would himself create multiple email addresses, and take the time to vote multiple times to make himself win, while having the other crew members do it for him as well? HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAHAHAHAAHAHA.....you just lost a LOT of points in my book...I was just starting to respect you a little bit. You REALLY dont know anything about Mikey or the Mikey Show. He didnt even like the R Factor contest because it made him very uncomfortable. He always said that they were a team, it was not just him. And something like that goes directly against his morality. Keep in mind, if you are gonna say that about him, that also goes for anyone else that was in that competition. They could have done the same thing, and ended up beating him. No one wants to admit that the radio ratings are extremely skewed, and that Mikey actually, in reality, has the largest following in San Diego radio.

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lunchbox23 March 16, 2012 @ 2:06 a.m.

I think you're reading into it a bit much...

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M1_12Gage March 16, 2012 @ 8:50 a.m.

How Lunchbox, that is exactly what he said!! And I quote:

"Also, regarding the R Factor, the thing was set up by brackets over several weeks, like March Madness. Anyway, you could vote once a week online per email address, but if you bothered to create 50 email addresses you could vote 50 times per week per person. And if you got the other four members of the team to do the same thing, you got yourself a nice pool of votes."

So if he wasnt referring to the Mikey Show, what "team" is he referring to about creating email addresses and voting?

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SandiB March 15, 2012 @ 2:16 p.m.

Ken- Next time you call a TV station, use your real name. We know each other and I would have been happy to tell you how the R Factor/contest was conducted. Sandi

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Ken Leighton March 15, 2012 @ 2:23 p.m.

I did have my friend call in to speak to you. Glad you could help us clear this up. The information was helpful.

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M1_12Gage March 15, 2012 @ 3:06 p.m.

Mr. Leighton, would you mind sharing an email address that I could contact you at? I have a couple things I would like to discuss with you, and I would prefer not to do it here on these boards. You have my word that I will be completely respectful and professional with you. If I wanted to slam you, I would do it here in public.

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Ken Leighton March 15, 2012 @ 3:19 p.m.

M1 - The general manager said Esparza's contract was terminated. Do you understand what that means? He is no longer employed by Lincoln Financial Media. His contract was deemed no longer in effect with almost a year to go on it. That is what I said. I repeated that fact. I also said the specific reason for the termination was not disclosed, (even though I have been told, I did not repeat because that WOULD have been unverifiable speculation). I think you are particularly sensitive because we brought up his on-air attacks he made against a competing station employee. We had just written about that about 2 months ago. And with the recent Scott Kaplan firing and the Limbaugh episode, I think it was germane and timely to this story. Hey, when Kaplan was fired that was sure talked about in the media. And what Esparza said was way worse. So it is a question that needed to be asked.

Let me explain something. Careers and lawsuits are on the line here. Including careers of people who are still at 94/9. If I said anything that misrepresented what Mr. Jackson said, I guarantee he would demand a retraction or correction or whatever. I hate to break it to you, but although you may not like what you are reading, this is reality. Yes, it may be painful for a Mikey disciple to read that his hero is out of radio, and that his ratings sucked, and that he fired off a completely unacceptable series of personal slurs on the air, but that's what happened. We asked if there was any cause and effect, and the boss said no.

But I will agree he sure does well on the internet what with his huge Facebook fan base and that R Factor thing. And he seems to get more bumper stickers on cars than anyone else.

And by the way what does M1- 12gage mean? Does that mean Mikey is your radio savior but that you also like guns? Just wondering.

And here's one question....why has Mikey said nothing? Maybe he should speak for himself.

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M1_12Gage March 15, 2012 @ 3:51 p.m.

PART 1 - Mr. Leighton, there is no changing your mind, so I will not continue to trade posts with you and just continue to insult each other. I see how you work.....just like you knew nothing about Mikey and you slam him, you know nothing about me, and attempt to slam me as well.

M1 is what the Mikey show fans refer to ourselves as. If you took the time to actually do some real research, you would know this. P1 was what we were referred to when he was at 105.3, but he went to 94.9, the lawyers told him that he could not continue to use P1 (which stands for Priority 1, meaning the listener is the first priority). We took the term M1 (for MikeyShow1). If you read my above posts, I told you my name is Mike Gage. While I was in the Navy, I was given the nickname "12Gage", but it never really had anything to do with guns. I have never touched one, besides training while in the Navy. It's just a nickname that my Chief gave me. So hence my M1 name, M1_12Gage. But nice attempt at a correlation there to Mikey being my savior and I somehow must like guns. The Gage in my 12Gage nickname isnt even spelled the same as a 12 gauge shotgun.

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M1_12Gage March 15, 2012 @ 3:51 p.m.

PART 2 - It really isnt gonna do me any good to continue to go back and forth with you about terminology used in your initial article (whether or not termination = fired). In your caption underneath Mikey's picture, you state that he was fired. I have spent a lot of time trying to explain to you that Mikey was not our "savior", but that we are more like a family and how we are very different than all other radio shows and listeners. You either arent reading my other posts or just ignoring what I am saying. I am not mad about you bringing up his on-air attacks, it is just another example of your jaded view of Mikey. As I said before, there is such a thing as "righteous anger", but again, I will admit it is all about your viewpoint. If you were a 91X fan, I could understand being angry about Mike's "rant". But keep in mind that he took that situation as a personal offense. He found out about it live on the air in the early hours of his 28 hour fundraiser, and that was his initial reaction. If you were right in the middle of trying to raise money for a cause that was very important to you, and found out that someone was advertising against it, you might be upset as well.

As for Mikey not saying anything....I dont know. M1 Nation (what the Mikey Show fans are called) is really hoping he will say something soon.

The bottom line is this. We just hope that everything works out for everyone. We hope that whatever is going on with Mikey gets worked out and that he is ok. We would love for him to get another show if that is what he wants. We hope that Woods, LOB, and Jay can go on to have successful careers, and we hope that 94.9 can work through this and continue to be able to stay on the air. But the hatred (and I continue to call it hatred because of your continued assaults against him, and the unfounded conclusions that you draw) that you continue to spew is based upon your own view's and opinions, and I felt the need to respond and share our views and opinions as fans and friends of his. I think I have shared just about everything that I can. I still invite you to consider writing a different type of article, one that shares all of the good things that Mikey did, and how he affected many, many lives for the better. For the few things about Mikey that you mention that people dont like, there is a whole other side to him that isnt being shared.

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M1_12Gage March 15, 2012 @ 4:25 p.m.

I have to say one more thing. You continue to say that because his contract was terminated, it must mean that he did something to get "fired". It is my understanding that a contract is an agreement between two parties, and if either party violates the agreements and terms laid out in the contract, that the contract can be terminated by the other party. Isnt it possible that Mikey had a clause in his contract that he would not play music during his show, and that 94.9 asked him to do it and he said no? Which then gave him the option to walk away? You state that you have inside information and that you know why the contract was terminated, but do you at least understand our frustation with what is being reported and what we are hearing from 94.9? You act like we have no right to be upset, and that you have all of this "inside knowledge" about what went down.

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David Dodd March 15, 2012 @ 4:35 p.m.

Look, I don't have a gun in this fight, I can't haul in 94.9 from down here, but I get how it's relatively serious and uncommon that a contract gets terminated in radio. Normally, when talent is let go, the contract remains, which means that if that would have happened with Esparza, he would still be getting paid. Radio stations generally want to avoid the lawyers and so on, so they'll allow talent to simply drift if the ratings tank and they eat the money. The fact that Esparza has nothing to say about this should lend you a clue that something went sideways. I get you're a big Mickey fan, but pull yourself back and look at this rationally. If Esparza is the awesome talent you claim he is, then he will turn up elsewhere, eventually. In radio, you have a shelf-life at any station you work for. That's part of that business. Relax, let it all play out.

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M1_12Gage March 16, 2012 @ 11:01 a.m.

Good morning. I really like your nickname by the way....lol...thats pretty funny. You make a very legitimate response with a lot of good points. But as you said, you can't get 94.9 where you are at so I am assuming you can only go by what you read here on these pages. There is a lot more to the story, like the things that Mikey has been going through the past few months. We dont even really know all of it, besides the fact that his son has autism, his mother is suffering from Alzheimer's disease, and he just had his gallbladder removed a couple of weeks ago (he frequently suffers from stomach ailments). We dont know if all of this has resulted in severe depression, which may have forced him to end his contract early, or if something else may have happened to him. Now this is all very much speculation...I am not inferring that I have any idea that this is true...but there are many different rumors floating around as to what may have happened, but nothing at all has been substantiated. He definitely has been talking about his "life falling apart" over the past few weeks, as well as saying he was going through the toughest time in his life. Those are in his blog for everyone to see. All I am saying is that we dont know for sure the he was fired for something that he said or did.

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demon666 March 15, 2012 @ 4:56 p.m.

San Diego doesn't need another revamped talk show. No offense to the people that are on now in the morning on 949 (they're cool), but its unnecessary. Just play MUSIC. Thats your mission statement. Stick to it. (or change your mission statement,...whatever's easiest). Just do it sooner than later because right now, its not good. I know this article was about Mikey, but really ,it doesn't seem that important or even correct. I'm sure Mikey is just fine. Its still early and it stings a little but its time for the M1's to move on. The blurt section of the Reader is usually pretty informative about what's happening locally but some of the contributors ONLY write about the unfortunate music happenings in San Diego. Take it with a grain of salt and let the true facts unfold when they may. Have a great night everyone.

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BookwormKM March 15, 2012 @ 5:32 p.m.

"Acidic tirades"? If you can name one other instance of Mikey being either "acidic" or going on a "tirade," aside from being upset with 91X for staging a counter-program to his Mikeython, which raises money for the Autism Discovery Institute at Children's Hospital (a cause that is very dear to his heart as his son Jake is diagnosed with autism), please cite it. Like Mike Gage said, Mike's initial reaction was a combination of hurt/sadness/fear, also known as anger. You guys at the Reader seem to be a little bit snarky about this whole Mikey leaving situation. Can we show a little compassion and stop speculating for the time being, as there could be some very grave reasons that Mikey is no longer working at LFM? Or is that too much to ask?

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David Dodd March 15, 2012 @ 5:39 p.m.

Isn't it a little much to ask that media not report about current events? Sure, they could print recipes in place of this, but there are already enough websites devoted to that sort of thing.

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lunchbox23 March 16, 2012 @ 2:14 a.m.

as a listener I've heard mikey belittle and poke fun at others expense when talking to someone on the line. That could be what he's mentioning. Though funny, they could be very cruel

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Ken Leighton March 15, 2012 @ 6:12 p.m.

To demon - I don't think everyone saw this as an overall negative. There are many who see this as a step in the right direction. A correction that may stop 949's downward slide. Regarding your contention that there are some contributors who are always negative, I'd like to know who they are. In the last 2 months I've done stories on Alas de Mosca, a new open mic in OB, and Makeda Dread's saving of an annual reggae event. I would love to know exactly who you are referring to or was this just an empty, anonymous whine. And I would also like to know what was not correct in this article. Sure, there are some juicy parts to this story but that's how Mikey rolled.

And to bookworm....you said that aside from from what Mikey said about Capone....are you kidding? That's like saying aside from Scott Kaplan calling that lady a Saquatch or a monster, what did Scott Kaplan do wrong? Aside from Rush Limbaugh calling that student a slut, tell me one thing he did wrong. Come on!!!

To M1-12gage...The "inside information" was unconfirmed and will not be repeated by me in any way. If it is true it may come out. If it wasn't, it didn't bare repeating.

I think this story was newsworthy. But now maybe we should back off and let it play itself out as the man said. And let's let 94/9 come back!

I have no specific inside info, but I think the talk fans should know that there may be no talk in 94/9's future. That makes some people happy and some people not. 94/9 used to be about the Shins and Arcade Fire and local bands.

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MsGrant March 15, 2012 @ 6:14 p.m.

Oh, dear lord. Tweek much?!? Gives new validity to the "only a face for radio" stereotype. Just like politics is show biz for ugly people, this proves that some people are really unaware of how awful they really are.

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BookwormKM March 15, 2012 @ 7:41 p.m.

That's a cop out argument, Ken. When Mike had had a chance to cool down, he apologized. I'm not saying that what he did was right, I'm just saying that if THAT is your ONLY instance of "acidic tirades" (which you pluralized, by the way, not me), then you need to provide more examples. I don't know about Scott Kaplan, but Rush has a history of being incendiary. Mikey didn't, at least not after he became a born-again Christian. Your straw man arguments aren't going to work with me, unfortunately. I asked for more specific examples. I think you'll be hard-pressed to find them.

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kitkat March 15, 2012 @ 8:21 p.m.

I think 94.9 still completely fulfilled its roll in supporting local bands even with the Mikey Show. I love 94.9 don't get me wrong, but they have a tendency to play the same songs over and over and over again until they are into the ground... That is why I change the station. I find your article to be very biased and obviously you prefer a no talk situation. Have you listened to what is on 94.9 in the morning lately? It is extremely awkward with Garrett being there and completely boring. Not surprisingly, they are playing the same old songs we always here. When I am up early in the morning I want something that makes me laugh and that wakes me up. This whole playing more of the same stuff for more time of the day just turns me off. I loved the Mikey Show and the chemistry the group had. It is sad to have it disappear out of nowhere.

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sageofsantee March 15, 2012 @ 8:26 p.m.

Hey Dan Millican

Can we talk about how many times in the last 2 months your band SUNNY RUDE played last and then chased everybody out of the room when you started playing. Are you hating life? Is that your issue? Dude your band is worse than a hepatitis scare

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DMillicanbass March 16, 2012 @ 5:22 p.m.

the real dan millican loves you. Keep Santee classy.

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Ken Leighton March 15, 2012 @ 8:57 p.m.

Look...where is the bias? Mikey show ratings were awful. The rest of station went way low after Mikey came on board. What are you talking about bias? Mikey Show numbers suck and this station is about to go under because of it or at least partly because of it. There is no bias against talk radio. There IS bias against a once great radio station that is tanking because it has been overwhelmed by the Mikey brand and it now appears to be losing if you look at Arbitron ratings over the last year. Did Swami quit 94/9 because it became the Mikey station? Hmmmmm....

Bookworm: Garrett Capone specifically told me Mikey never apologized. I asked him.

Plus, if anybody wants to find out what kind of guy Mikey is, why don't you speak with the 4 people he worked with for five years at Rock 105. I didn't go there in this article because it was not relevant, but for all of you folks who are holding Mikey up as this great religious icon with great moral underpinnings, I would say character counts and that you should ask his longtime teammates about it.

Anyway, so Garrett says on air he is leaving mornings and going back to afternoons. His temporary involvement in the morning show has no bearing on anything. After he leaves will the new name of the morning show be Mikey Show Remnants? It seems like the bar keeps going lower and lower.

And even if 94/9 still did support local bands(which I assume they do) if people aren't tuning in to the station for whatever reason, what good does it do those local bands?

By the way, I am happy to be part of this huge discussion even if it means anonymous bloggers who fawn over Mikey are taking shots at me. I am glad there were a few reasonable people out there who suggested that M1's now should start thinking about getting a life. Amen.

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M1_12Gage March 15, 2012 @ 10:36 p.m.

Ken, dude, I cant even believe I am responding again. But every post you make just gets me more and more worked up. 94.9 was tanking BEFORE they brought Mikey onboard. They are not tanking BECAUSE of him...they brought him on to try and raise their ratings. We can agree that it didnt work, and there are many reasons for that. And yes, in regards to the Capone situation, Mikey apologized on the air later in the day during the 28 hour show. He admitted that he initially over-reacted. Im not sure how anything he said is actionable in a court of law, but I wont outright disagree with you because I dont know enough about that (apparently you do). It seems that you are a big supporter of 94.9, and that is cool. I actually kind of like the new format that they had over the past week...I enjoyed listening to some of the music. I definitely miss Mikey of course, but I liked it. I wish the best for them and hope they do well...I will be continuing to listen....they have a really good following of listeners and Garrett the station manager seems like a really good guy. Not sure what you mean by "anonymous bloggers" taking shots at you...I told you who I am , and I even gave you my name when you asked it...not sure if you read all of my posts or not. When you write an article like the one that you wrote, you should expect a reaction. It was pretty f'd up of you to tell M1's to "get a life".....I got a great life dude. Not sure why I am giving you the time of day, but I felt it was necessary for some of us to stand up for Mikey. Maybe I dont know everything that he does day in and day out, or what he is like away from the airwaves, but all I know is the incredibly great impact he has had on many lives, which is more than I can say for you.

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climbergirl March 15, 2012 @ 9:44 p.m.

Mike Gage- thank you for defending Mikey's name and reputation here. You're a good man.

Ken- had your article been "well balanced," you would have included mentioning all the good things Mikey did for his listeners and the community. Such as his Be Different campaign, as well as the money he raised for Rady's Hospital. I'm sure Mikey's old show members did slam him to you and have nothing nice to say, but to Mike's point and other commenters on here, Mikey never slammed his old show on air or was mean spirited toward them. In fact, when his listeners took that approach he did NOT allow them to speak of his old crew that way. He also took responsibility for his mistakes in the break up of the old show, and he owned those mistakes multiple times on air. I have yet to hear The Show do that and to not speak mean spirited of him.

Mikey is human, like the rest of us. If he did do something wrong to get himself fired, he is human and imperfect like all of us, but I don't question his character for one moment. So what if the ratings fell, so what if he and 94.9 weren't a match...your fails to mention the GOOD that Mikey brought. Instead the tone of your article is to demonize him. That makes me sad, as you are completely missing the good person that he is and the character and integrity he brought on air everyday. And I say again, if he did something wrong and messed up, that makes him a normal imperfect person just like the rest of us.

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sageofsantee March 15, 2012 @ 9:49 p.m.

Hey Dan Millican...are you the same Dan Millican who was kicked out of a successful North County band named Stone Senses. Are you the same Dan Millican who is now part of Sunny Rude...a band that chases way much more people than you attract. If you are, why are you bothering to use your real name? I would be so ashamed, that I would use an alias like all the other losers who spend all their time on this site.

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David Dodd March 15, 2012 @ 10:01 p.m.

It could be the copious amounts of blow...

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DMillicanbass March 16, 2012 @ 5:28 p.m.

The real Dan Millican loves the fact that you know so much about me. Thanks for the support!

The real Dan Millican wants to know why your heart is so full of hate?

Everyone is a critic

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Ken Leighton March 15, 2012 @ 10:06 p.m.

Dear climbergirl- It is clear you are pure and decent person. But please let me explain my point of view: anytime you drape yourself in self-righteousness, not only do you immediately hold yourself up to a higher standard, but the very preachiness makes you a target (I AM ONLY SPEAKING FOR MYSELF AS A CONTRIBUTING WRITER TO THE READER). Mikey's slur against Garrett Capone was vile and slanderous and actionable in a court of law. I don't think he has a carte blanche because he says he frequently reminds us he is a Christian. But you say he just made a mistake. Let's not fight. Let's just move ahead. We just disagree. Mikey has done good things. Let's all know that and accept that. Let us hope Mikey is safe and well and good. He has three kids for goodness sakes. He has a wife. I would never pile on if he were struggling. Let's all help this very talented man get to to the better place he needs to be.

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M1_12Gage March 15, 2012 @ 11:03 p.m.

It's only fair that I give you props for the last 7 sentences that you wrote. It's good to see you finally say something nice about him. Would have been GREAT to have a balanced initial article and include some of this.

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theangryintern March 16, 2012 @ 8:15 a.m.

"It is thought that many who loved 94/9’s eclectic playlist were driven away from the station by Esparza's act."

I'm definitely one of those, I basically went from listening to FM949 exclusively to barely listening to them at all. Ironically, for one who enjoyed music in the morning instead of chatter, I started listening to the DSC on JACK FM, and then on the way home from work I would usually just leave it on JACK as they play pretty decent music.

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M1_12Gage March 16, 2012 @ 8:19 a.m.

Angryintern, have you checked out 94.9 this week? They are back to playing some music in the mornings while talking in between...It is actually very good..I am enjoying it. Although I was a huge Mikey Show fan, and am still a big supporter of Mikey, I am really onboard with the new format they are pushing....you should check it out.

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BookwormKM March 16, 2012 @ 8:43 a.m.

Just because someone is vocal about being a Christian, that doesn't mean that they "drape [themselves] in self-righteousness." If I'm basing my opinion of you solely on the way you write about Mikey's faith, I'd think you have an issue with Christianity in general. Maybe you're not aware, but being Christian doesn't make us infallible, and it doesn't give us the moral high ground. That's the beauty of having a Savior. We don't have to be perfect, we just have to try to live our lives like Christ did. Guess what? We slip up all the time. You seem to have some deep-rooted notion that Christians are hypocritical and overzealous. Some are. Mikey is not. As far as his old cast members are concerned, not all of them would have bad things to say about Mike. Anyway, I'm going to wash my hands of this conversation and move on with my life. I suggest you build a bridge, and then get over it.

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lunchbox23 March 16, 2012 @ 4:13 p.m.

to say Mikey isn't overzealous is just an incorrect statement

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tomjohnston March 16, 2012 @ 12:31 p.m.

I have been reading the comments here and I have to say, with no offense to anyone here, I’ve had quite a chuckle. So I'll weigh in with my 2 cents, for what it's worth. First let me say this. I don’t live in SD. But I do have many, many, many relatives living there, I’ve been to SD hundreds and hundreds of times and probably have spent literally thousands of days there so SD is very familiar to me. So as I believe someone else has said, I don’t have a gun in this fight. Regardless of where I’m at, if I listen to terrestrial radio, it’s usually NPR or a sporting event. When I was down in San Diego when I was growing up, I was usually running around with my cousins and we probably were listening to the old KCBQ on the old transistor radio. When my wife and I got out of college, we did live in Encinitas for a few months, maybe 6 or 8. We shared a house with my cousin and his gf. That was probably a couple of yrs after KGB started and then a few yrs later it was probably one of my cousins that turned us on to 91X. Not the crap 91X is now but back when it was AOR and then Alternative. OK so yeah I’m an old guy. I’m 61 and I happen to think most, not all, but most radio in the last 10yrs is crap. Just my opinion. Opinions vary. So here’s why I’m having a nice little chuckle over this. This guy was at this station for just over 2 yrs, if I read the story correctly. I was not familiar with him, but a quick search reveals that he was fired from 3 of his precious gigs and not "given a chance to renew his contract” at a fourth. And now the same in San Diego. So it appears that in his 20 or so yrs in radio, he has never left a gig on his own accord. And that’s what’s so amusing. Some people all up in arms about a guy who seems to be just repeating his own history. I mean it’s not as if this shouldn’t have been expected at some point. With a few exceptions, most radio “personalities” do not spend an extended period of time in one place; a shelf life as someone said. And in most cases, they’re either fired or just not brought back when their contracts are up. Especially this guy, who got “yanked off the air in a whirlpool of bad ratings, on-air rants about competitors, and negative reactions from fans”. It’s a way of life in radio. Most are just transients passing thru. I mean come on. Seriously? It’s not as if this was Jim Ladd getting the boot from Cumulus Media. As I said. Just my opinion. Opinions vary. Let the bashing begin!!!! LOL

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M1_12Gage March 16, 2012 @ 12:42 p.m.

Hey Tom. I'm not gonna bash you, and would encourage everyone else to not bash you as well. You are more than entitled to your opinion, and I understand your viewpoint as well, because of not having listened to the Mikey Show. If you read my post above, the Mikey Show is very different. They connected with their fanbase in a way that no other morning show does. The reason's that Mikey was fired from some of his early stints as a radio show host was because he used to be very "Howard Stern-like". He struggled with substance abuse, and was constantly pushing the limits of what he was allowed to do on the radio, and frequenly crossed those lines. A few years ago he accepted Jesus Christ, changed his life, and became COMPLETELY different. He created an amazing show that really connected with people, and he made an incredible impact on many, many lives. I wont take up any more of your time and bore you, but I encourage you to go to itunes and download some of the podcast from the Mikey Show. You can find them by searching for "M1 Site Daily Archives". Trust me, it is not a preaching show.....he does not preach or even discuss religion very often. It is a normal morning show where they discuss things in their lives as well as current events. There are about 300 episodes there on itunes. If you do get a chance to listen, let us know what you think!!

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tomjohnston March 16, 2012 @ 1:51 p.m.

M1_12Gage It seems as if you missed my points. From your u/n, and your words, I gather that you are one of his fans. As such, you surly must realize that your views are most certainly tempered strictly to your own point of view. Since, as I said, I have no gun in this fight, I believe mine to be far less biased, in either direction. Let me be clear. Mike Esparza's personal life has no bearing what so ever on my opinion. Good or bad, those events and his personal beliefs are completely irrelevant; the kind of person he is off air, in "real life" has no bearing. The fact is undeniable that this is, at minimum, the 5th time he has either been asked to leave or not asked to return. No matter what logic you use, it remains a fact that for what ever the reason was, history has indeed repeated itself. You also seem to take issue with the statement from the author in regards to ratings, rants and negative fan reactions. Since I never listened, I don't have personal knowledge of these "rants", but the ratings are what they are; they don't lie. And after having just viewed a few other stories, I would have to say a large majority of the comments appear to give creedence to what the author wrote in regard to his "rants". I don't personally have an issue with Esparza or his show. My point was 2 fold. 1. After barely 2 years, he is off the air again, for whatever reason, and is continuing the pattern. As I said in my previous post, I would think it was to be expected. Life in radio is transitory at best for most, and again as I said, sadly predictable, for whatever reason, for some. 2. After barely 2 yrs into his current gig, being let go, in whatever manner it actually was done, while painful for some, really wasn't a major event in radio. No disrespect to Esparza and his seemingly loyal, if not rabid listeners, but his loss will be, relatively speaking, barely felt in the industry, if at all, outside of San Diego.If not for my regular perusal of the Reader , despite my many, many visits to San Diego during the time he was on the air because of my ties to San Diego, I would never have heard of him. As was said somewhere above, if he is talented he will resurface somewhere else. Again, it's not like the new owner of a station showed Jim Ladd the door. Just my opinion. Opinions vary.

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M1_12Gage March 16, 2012 @ 3:45 p.m.

Tom, I do respect your opinion. Like I said before, this is a different case. Mikey is different, and his fanbase is different, and it just isnt my "viewpoint" as a fan. I would like to address one point that you made, where you said "ratings dont lie". Actually in this case, they do. The Arbitron ratings are based on who is actually listening on the radio, on the frequency, during that timeframe. Mikey had a HUGE fanbase, #1 in San Diego, but a majority of them did not listen on the radio. 94.9 has an ipod/ipad application, as well as a link to "Listen Live" on their website, as well as there were daily podcast of the show. Because of the large "M1 Nation" that follows Mikey (from all over the country), the fan's would listen at work, at home, onboard Navy ships, everywhere; even overseas in Iraq and Afghanistan (he has a large military following). Many would listen to the podcast later in the day if they could not listen to the show live. Now I understand ratings, and advertisement dollars, and how the fanbase that doesnt listen live, on the radio, doesnt matter to Lincoln Financial Media or any other station owner. But your dismissal as this is "not any big deal", is actually misguided. The Mikey Show was not just your daily, run of the mill radio show.

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tomjohnston March 16, 2012 @ 5:21 p.m.

I originally only meant to make one post, so here's my third and final one on this thread. You are still circumnavigating my point and the bulk of your comment has no relation to anything I said. My comments are only about his viability on the RADIO. Everything else in you post has no bearing to that. My comments had nothing to do with his "fanbase" and non radio alternatives and really, neither did the article. Nowhere in either of my posts did I even mention anything not related to his radio gig as being part of the issue. If your understanding of ratings is true, then you know that in almost all cases, your shelflife on the radio is indeed all about the ratings, not counting the occasional socially/political incorrect incident, which usually, though not exclusively occurs on air, and was, btw mentioned as an on air issue in this case. Put simply, the amount of money your show can bring in to the advertisers is the deal. They generally don't care about anything else that doesn't create a positive addition to their bottom line. He may well indeed be a great guy with outstanding personal virtues and I have no reason to doubt what you say about that. But that wasn't what I addressed. In the context of my comments, about ONLY his radio gig, his short tenure is following the previous pattern, and while the loss of his show apparently is a big deal to you and the others in his fanbase, which I understand, within the radio industry, his loss as I said, will be barely felt, if felt at all at all, outside of San Diego. It's great to be passionate about your subject, but you're not writing with passion, you're writing with emotion, which doesn't serve your point of view well. That's proven out by the fact you don't seem to be able to make the distinction between his strictly on the radio gig which is all I'm commenting on, and the rest of his life, both professional and personal which have no bearing to my comments. You're rolling everything up into the same big ball, but you're the only one here doing so. As is said below, he may be a great guy but he has to be doing something wrong professionally. Sorry for your loss, but life does indeed go on for all of us.

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M1_12Gage March 16, 2012 @ 7:07 p.m.

What are you talking about Tom? Arent passion and emotion the same thing? If you have "a passion" for something, arent you also showing "emotion" for that thing you have a passion for? That is just a silly point to make. You really aren't even close to getting it, and I really dont know why you are bothering to comment about a show that you never even listened to, and have never even heard of before this. Yes, he has a history, and yes, he lost this job as well. Ok, so what is your point? I would respect you a lot more if you actually listened, and didnt like the show, than someone from the outside commenting about something that you have no clue about. You cant knock my passion, or emotion, or my love for the show, when you dont even know what you are talking about. I wasnt circumnavigating anything. For us, it is all "rolled up in one big ball", as you said. I wish everyone on the Mikey Show Facebook pages that agreed with me would comment here. We would take up all of the San Diego Readers server storage space. And who cares if him being off of 94.9 wont be felt outside of San Diego...who gives a crap? You could say that about any local radio station show in any town in the country! It is felt strongly here, and thats all that matters to us...you are just making points that dont even matter.

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tomjohnston March 16, 2012 @ 9:07 p.m.

gage gage gage, being a sniveling little crybaby is emotional, but is that being passionate? Ranting and raving about something without using any logic is emotional, but again, passionate? A flush of joy or fright is definitely a show of emotion, but again is that demonstrating a passion? Passion can indeed be emotional, but not in those contexts and not in this one. In your writing, emotion is merely the manifestation of the manic psychological affect the loss of a radio show you "love" has on you. Been there done thatbut I'm sorry, but that's not passion but rather just plain being emotional. Of course his loss is strongly felt by you and his other his M1's. I get that but it wasn't part of anything I referred to; it wasn't part of my point. And listening, or not, and liking, or not has nothing to do with my comments and I didn't knock you for your "love of the show" because it's nothing that matters to me. My points don't matter to you and and I never intended for them to. My point is, which you yourself just made, is that people in radio lose their jobs all the time. If you don't produce you're gone. Just like has happened to Esparza several times. And to put your words a little more concisely, he is a very little fish in a very very large pond. As you said, "And who cares if him being off of 94.9 wont be felt outside of San Diego...who gives a crap".You're right and that's EXACTLY the other point I was making. Thanks for finally getting, even if you don't realize you did. Oh and btw, I've lived in L.A. almost all of my life and for almost 30 yrs my wife had several different positions behind the scenes so to speak, in the entertainment industry.And In in that time we've had many friends, probably 2 or 3 dozen, who have or are working in the entertainment industry, both on the air and behind the scenes. So I actually have a very good idea of what I;m talking about. Again, I'm sorry for your loss, but life does still go on for all of us.

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SurfPuppy619 March 16, 2012 @ 11:30 p.m.

Very true-rating mean everything.

Remember Burger and Prescott on KGB, big ratings, then 91X stole them and they TANKED.

I used to like Kati Manor and the Breakfest Club on 91X.

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M1_12Gage March 17, 2012 @ 11:33 a.m.

What I have been trying to explain to you Tom, is that this is more than just another "radiojock" getting kicked off the air. Most of us have not only been listening to Mikey for the past 2 years...a majority of us, including me, have been listening to him for over 8 years, since he first went to mornings at Rock 105.3. You keep unfairly referring to all of the times that Mikey has been fired, but most of those were early in his career when he was an alcoholic and was always breaking limits on the air. That is not him anymore. He had his job at 105.3 for almost 6 years, and his departure from there was different than the other instances. There is a LOT of emotion wrapped around the Mikey Show...its not just me...there is an entire "M1 Nation" that is wrapped up in this thing right now, waiting to hear from Mikey as to what really happenned. You have no "horse in the race", and that is fine, but dont judge me for having emotion because you know nothing about the situation. I understand where you are coming from, and what your points are. I responded with emotion because this is a very emotional situation for us. Mikey made us a part of his life...he wasnt just on the air "talking" about BS. Him and the rest of the show would discuss everything about their lives. When Mikey's son was born, he made us a part of it. When they found out his son had autism, they made us a part of it. When his twins were born, we were a part of it. When he found out that his mother has alzheimer's, we were a part of it. When the contract with 105.3 ended, and he was off the air, and the rest of the show stayed, it was just as emotional as this (this is actually a little worse because we havent heard from Mikey). We are part of his extended "family". So it's only fair that we are wrapped up in this thing emotionally. It's not really something you can understand, and I really dont have anything else to say about it. We have different opinions and viewpoints of it, and that is fine. And of course, yes, life goes on. Its not like I am sitting in my house wrapped up in a blanket in the corner and rocking back and forth crying (aren't I?...lol)...but he was a big part of our mornings, and he will be missed.

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lunchbox23 March 16, 2012 @ 4:17 p.m.

I never thought of it that way, great points made. Mikey may be a great guy but he has to be doing something wrong.

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Ken Leighton March 16, 2012 @ 12:39 p.m.

I was only referring to (in this blog, not in the article) that he would spend the last 15 minutes of his show each Friday with his "testimony." Of course he was coming from a good place but I think it drove people from the station, My point is, why not just walk he walk...lead by example....let your good works do the testifying. He in fact did do good works. But there people of other faiths out there, or people who are not connected to a faith. This 15 minutes, although well intentioned, did more harm than good in my opinion. He could have shortened it to one minute and say..."If you want to connect with me on this, here, read this on line", or whatever.

And since he wanted to be known as a man of faith, what did it say, for instance, when he lashed out at Garrett Capone in that fashion. I think hat sent quite a contradictory message.

Because I stand for this, it does not mean I am anti-Christian. I'm just saying that Mike was counterproductive to what he was trying to get done. Does this make sense?

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M1_12Gage March 16, 2012 @ 12:45 p.m.

For sure Ken. You are absolutely entitled to your opinion. But many, many of us disagree with you saying that he was "counterproductive" with his testimony....but then again, there are some people that agree with you as well (we hear about them all the time on the Mikey Show page and 94.9 page). Mikey was a polarizing figure. It would make for a great article.

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lunchbox23 March 16, 2012 @ 4:21 p.m.

when I did listen to him I always turned the radio off or the station when he did a testimony or talked too in depth about his religion.

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Ken Leighton March 16, 2012 @ 3:30 p.m.

Webmaster: the blogger who logged in as dan_millican and used Dan's phone number is not Dan Millican who does exist. And that is his real number.

Please remove those posts.

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DMillicanbass March 16, 2012 @ 3:46 p.m.

OK, so obviously someone has used my name and is slandering me. This is the REAL dan millican. the same guy that was in stone senses and sunny rude(which has nothing to do with this blog posts or article) I was notified today by ken, who should know by now the level of professionalism that i use. With that being said, whoever is talking shit about me can stop. you are stupid and immature. Do you really think i would use my real name and talk about doing coke? the fact that people actually believe that i would type something so incompetent, damaging to both myslef and others,and slanderous is laughable in its own right. I have neither read the article, or the bulk of the responses, because, quite frankly, this topic has little interest. In kens words "if it mattered, i'd react" What does matter is that someone is parading around as me. I appreciate the flattery and all, but if you can't be man enough to talk shit to me face to face, and you think that some local entertainment guide is the best way to talk trash, then you are pathetic. See you at our shows coming up St. Patty's day at hennesseys carlsbad.

PS: you guys are really stupid. do you really think i would talk about drugs and leave my number. you are all dumbasses.

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M1_12Gage March 16, 2012 @ 7:08 p.m.

sorry dude...that sucks. whoever it was said some pretty messed up stuff.

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demon666 March 16, 2012 @ 4:19 p.m.

Hi Ken. I don't really know why I care but it seems the article had a lot of questionable attributes which is why 6,....6 people are commenting on it. You upset 6 people who really care. That was why I said that. As for the contributions to the Reader being negative, that may have been the wrong wording. I should have said something like... controversial. Feel better. Not an anonymous whine. I just don't need the headache. I have opinions like everyone else here and I was sharing them. Not taking sides or pot shots at anyone. I just hope 949 does figure out their current situation and stay away from talk radio in the mornings. As for supporting local music. Not to sure about that statement. The show on Sundays' does a pretty good job but I think there are a lot of bands overlooked due to the sheer volume of bands in San Diego. I'm sure listening to all those submissions takes a fair amount of time and consideration. And putting the ones making some real headway are the ones that are played on air. At least thats how it used to work. Again just my opinion. Im sure I could go on and on but its not really necessary. Again, let the cards fall where they may and the truth will unveil its ugly head when it's ready. And all 6 of us ...will be waiting to comment on it.

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M1_12Gage March 16, 2012 @ 6:57 p.m.

There might only be 6 people commenting on this page, but hundreds of people have read this article and the comments. There are several Facebook pages for the Mikey Show and M1's, both closed pages and open to the public. There has been several conversations with a lot of comments about this article.

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shuttterbug March 16, 2012 @ 5:58 p.m.

When I first moved to San Diego a year ago, I remember commenting to a coworker on how god-awful the talk radio is here. It's just bad. 105.3 has the shrill voice of soccer mom Sky who fake-laughs at EVERYTHING (to which I have to turn my radio down for) and Ashley- the idiot of the universe who dumbs herself down to appear "cute". Only girls that aren't naturally witty and funny have to pull that one.

And then there's The Mikey Show. To be fair, LOB, Jay, and Woods are pretty funny. Actually, when they're on alone, I rather enjoy it. But Mikey man. Christian rants have no place on a rock station...who does he think he's catering to? Half the time, I felt like LOB, Jay, and Woods were sitting in the room just CRINGING. Cause I was. The audience of that station doesn't want to hear that. It's weird and awkward for everyone. On top of that, Mikey would ALWAYS get his feelings hurt when they playfully made fun of him, but was the first to make fun of the rest of the crew. Ugh. Yes, PLAY MUSIC. Or let LOB, Jay, and Woods host. LOB is hilarious, that girl's dry sense of humor and impressions are awesome.

Great article..whether he was let go, or he left on his own, I know a lot of people are happy about this decision.

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tomjohnston March 17, 2012 @ 12:51 p.m.

reply to SurfPuppy619 11:30 p.m., Mar 16, 2012.

Surfpuppy619 My wife and I took an extended summer vacation down there after we got out of grad school. We ended up staying the rest of the year and finally moved back up here in January of 75. Coincidentally, that’s when I first started reading the Reader. The original format print version of course. But yes I do remember them. Someone please correct me if I’m wrong, but as I remember things, Jeff Prescott was there first. I think he started around 75 or 76 as a news guy. Eventually his role kind of morphed into a newsguy/dj sidekick kind of thing and eventually quit doing the news all together. I don’t think Berger arrived until around 84-85, some where n that time frame. I think it was about 4 or 5 yrs they teamed up there before defecting to 91X. I have always thought that they tanked at 91X because by the time they got there, 991X was one of the highest rated alternative format stations in the country and I just don’t think that spending all of that time at an AOR station translated well to the 91X audience. I read an interview with Jeff Prescott a few years ago when he retired from the radio business. In it he said his gig at KGB for 15yr was his favorite one of his career. I will also say this. From the mid 70’ to the late 80s/early 90s, I got to listen to a lot of good DJs. KGB has some good ones. People like BC(Bob Coburn) and his great show Rockline(and BC has been up here at KLOS for more than 30 yrs), Sue Delany Coe Lewis, Kymythy Schultz (Kymythy is such a great name), Gabriel Wisdom, John Leslie ( we thought he John Lesley the porn star for the longest time), Jim McInnes and of course Dace Shelly and Chainsaw. And I’m sure I have forgotten some others that I haven’t heard in a long time . And then there are the ones up here from KMET and KLOS. The late Raechel Donahue and her iconic show Breakfast With The Beatles, Cynthia Fox, The Gonzer, Paraquat Kelly, the immortal late B. Mitchel Reed , Uncle Joe Benson, Denise Westwood, Lovely Rite Wilde, the Fraz, Gino Michelini, Gary Moore and his long running show Get The Led out on KLOS, Mark and Brian(at least the early M&B), Michael Benner and his 20 yrs hosting his great late Sunday night show IMPACT and Frank Sontag who took up the gauntlet for another yrs after Michael left, J.J. Jackson, yes that J.J. Jackson, my buddy Jim Ladd and of course I can’t forget the one , the only the inimitable Barret Eugene Hansen, known lovingly to most as Dr. Demento. And I’m sure I have forgotten some others that I haven’t heard in a long time but man, what a trip down memory lane. Fortunately a few of these greats are still around and going strong. There are just left. In my opinion, most radio has been crap since the mid 90s.

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SurfPuppy619 March 18, 2012 @ 8:04 p.m.

Do you remember "Pirate Radio" back in the early 1990's with, Scott Shannon. It was like nothing else in So Cal. It was an LA Station but picked up in parts of SD.

I remember when Shelley was not with Dave and Chainsaw- and I forgot how they hooked up, it was Dave and Chainsaw and then Shelley was with another team and somehow she ended up with Dave and Chainsaw........

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tomjohnston March 18, 2012 @ 10:40 p.m.

Are you talking about the station that used that as their moniker or the weekend show they called Pirate Radio. If you mean the station as a whole, you and I have different opinions of it. It wasn't around very long and I admit I had to look it up. It was a very short lived station March 89 through April 93. I don't remember much about it. The wiki entry didn't ring a lot of bells except I do remember their flush your old station thing and I seem to remember they had a billboard ad some place with a toilet on it, someplace p on Sunset, I think. I don't remember Shannon at all. I did listen to Pirate Radio USA once in a while but I think it was probably thru a Westwood One show. They used to do a lot of live concerts, some of them from L.A. clubs. I still have a bunch of reel tapes o some of those show, transferred to dc at some point. Coincidentally, my wife was listening to one a couple of days ago. It's Christine McVie at the Country Club in Reseda in 83. At that time, I was listening to KLOS. Besides the fact they were pretty damn good, a friend of ours worked on the M&B show for a while back then. Pretty much when I did listen to alot of radio, it was either KMET and KLOS,once in a while KNAC or KLSX, until KMET died. Since then, mainly KLOS, when I listen to music radio, but most of the time It's NPR, the IPod or a CD. There are a few of my old favorites around, so occasionally I listen in, but not that often. As for DSC, I don't remember Shelly Dunn before DSC.

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SurfPuppy619 March 19, 2012 @ 12:10 a.m.

Pirate Radio did NOT last-and I was surpised, because I loved the music they played.

KLOS was always the go to station in LA for good rock-Gold's Gym Venice would only play KLOS.

Golds Gym Pacific Beach always played KGB and 91X.

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tomjohnston March 19, 2012 @ 10:31 a.m.

"KLOS was always the go to station in LA for good rock" I guess that became true at some point, especially after KMET died. In the early days, for me anyway, probably 75-85, it was pretty close between the 2. KLOS was owned by ABC at the time and they were a little more structured than KMET. KMET was a little bit more counterculture. I went to Berkeley and that appealed to me a little more. And alot of it, for me, depended on the time of day and the DJ. You listen to the same ones for 5 or 10 yrs,or at this point 30+, you meet some of them become friends with a few and you tend to stick with your favorites. No different I guess than watching a particular local newscast because you like the anchors. Like I said, once M&B showed up,I started listeng to KLOS almost exclusively. By that time, KNAC was more alternative, KLSX had shown up on the scene with that newfangled "classic rock" format, LOL, and KROQ had gone more like 91X. Did you know the guy who changed 91X from AOR to alternative was from L.A.? It was the same guy who did it to KROQ up here. I don't know nearly as much about the genealogy of radio in San Diego, for obvious reasons, but from the mid 70's thru the turn of the century, there were some pretty good people on the air. You might be surprised at some of the names.

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tomjohnston March 19, 2012 @ 10:57 a.m.

Also let me apologize to the "late" Raechel Donahue. She's the wife of the late Tom Donahue, who pretty much started free form Fm radio at KSAN in the early 70's and then brought it to KMET and is alive and hopefully well, all of which my better half was so kind to remind me of. It was the late great Deirdre O'Donoghue who created BWTB.

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Bryan_H March 18, 2012 @ 7:50 a.m.

Dear Mr. Leighton, I read your article and a majority of the comments following. I do not care about your opinion on anything else except the Garrett Capone "Rant" that you talk about. I heard it live on the radio. From what I have read, I cannot tell if you heard it for yourself or you heard about it from a third party. I can't express how deeply I disagree with you. If anyone tried to advertise for personal gain over a fundraiser that helps children, they would be ridiculed. They should also be shot. It would be like Perez Hilton trying to get people to not watch the Kony 2012 video so he can get more hits. Mr. Capone is lucky Mikey didn't let people who could ruin his career know what he did, for example the SD Union Tribune or some other main stream media. I really don't know how it did not get out to a bigger media source. You don't mess with raising money for kids who desperately need it and You, Mr. Leighton, surely are aware of this. To defend someone of that character is asinine. Sicerely, Bryan Herness

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Ken Leighton March 18, 2012 @ 1:17 p.m.

Bryan - Yes I heard the rant. Someone sent me the audio files, Believe, they were passed around to a number of people. It was outrageous. First, 91X played music for 2 days with no commercials while 94/9 went all talk. Those are two separate things. Some people want talk, some people want music. You see this as a competition. I say apples and oranges. I don't think that by another station not playing commercials it will turn a Mikey fan into a non Mikey fan. He did have lots of followers. H also had lots of detractors. But it were his fans who would stay with him for 48 hours during the Mikeython. So you are saying that someone who decides to not play commercials should be shot? Wow dude, I hope you aren't psycho. Please don't shoot anybody. I am sure Mr. Esparza was truly trying to do a good thing with this fundraiser. It just seems so bizarre that someone who is trying to do such a good thing could turn around and be such a monster. Man he is one complex dude. And what do you mean that Capone is lucky that he didn't let the UT know about what Capone did. Dude, MIKEY'S RANT WENT OUT OVER THE AIR. Everyone knew about this.

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M1_12Gage March 18, 2012 @ 4:24 p.m.

Ken, everytime you choose to respond to this article, you look more and more like a moron. You aren't even making sense in this response, and you completely ignore what actually happened. I have tried to be respectful, and not resort to name-calling and cheap responses, but you make it impossible. Tom Johnston, who made comments above, actually makes more sense than you do. You completely ignore the fact that 91x was advertising their "non-commercial" weekend, DIRECTLY AGAINST the Mikey 28 hour show (and its 28 hours, not 48 hours like you list above....and Im sure that was a typo because of the wonderful investigative reporting that you have exemplified, like not even bothering to actually research your articles before you submit them..i.e. R Factor on Fox 5). Anyway, 91x has 364 OTHER days in a year that they could choose to run a non-commercial marathon, but they chose to do it during his 28 hour show, directly taking listeners away from his attempt to raise money for children with autism. If someone is listening to 91x for that time, it is potentially a time when they might be flipping through the channels, land on 94.9, and hear Mikey discussing Rady Children's Hospital. We will never know how many potential donors did not donate money because they were listening to 91x instead. Competition and ratings is one thing...directly campaigning against a good cause is hellish. It should be very obvious why Mikey was upset when he found out about this live on the air. Quit being an idiot and ignoring common sense and facts. You are making yourself look ignorant and close-minded, which is the opposite of what a "journalist" is supposed to be. You only hold this against him because it is Mikey. If it was one of your buddy DJ's, you certainly would make every effort to defend them if they did the same thing.

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Bryan_H March 18, 2012 @ 5:32 p.m.

Mr Leighton, First I would appreciate you not putting words in my mouth. You know that I used "Should be shot" as an expression. Also one that referred to attempting to steal money from kids with autism not because they didn't play commercials. Nice try. Lets try and be civilized and stick to the facts here, if that is possible. That is the nature of this forum, is it not.

I will try to make this simple for you to understand. Fact #1 Capone purposely tried to compete with the Mikeython directly during the hours that it ran. I think that makes it related not seperate. Fact #2 Mikey stated the facts. And his comments back that up. Slander requires a false statement. Fact #3 We live in America, where we have the right to free speech. Which is how you are able to write your comments on the topic as well. I am pretty sure that falls under the First Amendment. And Fact #4 Stealing money from little kids is and always will be wrong. Morals still exist Mr. Leighton. Defending little kids with austism doesn't make you a monster. Stealing from little kids makes you a monster. Sorry I think that last sentence makes fact #5

Now for my personal opinion, you should be ashamed of attempting to defend such an act. I am not here to defend Mikey but to give a voice to someone who cannot do it for them self. "Give a voice" is another expression fyi. Show some respect "Dude," those kids are people too. Next time I hear someone wants to advertise directly against a fundraiser I will be sure to let them know that there is someone in their corner to support them. Again "someone in their corner" is an expression...fyi

Not that it matters but I don't believe you have audio of "the rant". 94.9 claims to not have audio of the show. I find it hard to believe that someone else recorded it on their own. Feel free to prove me wrong though.

Sincerely Bryan Herness

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Ken Leighton March 18, 2012 @ 5:48 p.m.

Alright 28 hours. whatever. Sorry you are having trouble understanding. Let's try it again. One station went all talk for 28 hours. They other one was all music. Get it? Some people really love Mikey. Others not so much. Mikey fans liked this 28 straight hours of Mikey. For them it was heaven. For the everyone else, it was radio hell. Those Mikey fans (and there were many) are not going to abandon their radio hero because the music station happens to be playing more music during this time. I probably would not have done that if I was in charge at 91X. But nevertheless, they did. Anyway, the point is, how can someone be so good by staging this fundraiser, and then turn around and sound like Linda Blair on the Exorcist, projectile vomiting and all, because the other station stopped playing commercials. It wasn't good PR for 91X, but Mikey's response was way over the top. Mr. Capone does not beat up kids with autism, Mikey, and Capone told me he got no apology. I can not believe you would defend Mikey for making these personal slurs on the air. It is not OK. And as I said, Scott Kaplan got fired from XX 1090 for much less. But this is all academic, since Jackson said Esparza was not let go for anything he said on the air.

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Bryan_H March 18, 2012 @ 6:14 p.m.

Like I said, I am here in support of kids, who I feel were done an injustice. I belive Kaplan got fired for slander, he made derogatory comments towards a womans character that were not true. Mikey's comments directly resembled the character Mr. Capone demonstrated in that situation. I think it's a little different. I really do appreciate your time in response regarding this matter. It shows you care about what you write. I have said my piece, have a nice day!

Sicnerely Bryan Herness

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David Dodd March 18, 2012 @ 11:09 p.m.

Kaplan didn't get fired for slander. He got fired for not following company policy. And his contract did not get terminated, they let it expire. Big difference.

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Ken Leighton March 18, 2012 @ 9:25 p.m.

Bryan...we agree to disagree. 91X maybe should not have done what they did. But I also maintain that Mikey was out of line in his response. The fact is, there is a family (including an autistic child) involved and that should be everyone's primary concern. I still stand by everything I wrote. I will say some of the stuff Mikey did seemed hypocritical. But let's all know that Mikey has a huge following, he should one day reconnect with following, and that there are probably immediate concerns more important that what flunky bloggers have to say. Because I am one of those flunkies, I am signing off now. Talk amongst yourselves.

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DCH March 19, 2012 @ 10:36 a.m.

Ken, you'll be back. Because much like a stripper with daddy issues...you like the attention.

I read your article and was actually the first one to comment. Yay me! :) That being said, your article pissed me off but not NEARLY as much as your ridiculous responses. What's your damage Ken?

Your assumption that all M1's fawn over Mikey's words as if they were gospel is absurd. I disagreed with Mikey on A LOT of things and he and I went back and forth on a lot of those issues. In regards to his "tirade" against 91X. Who cares? Capone can't fight his own battles? Was that really the worst thing EVER said on air????

I don't care what your personal opinion of Mikey is. What pissed me off was the lack of integrity in your article. Right off the bat you're quoting someone from a rival station. As if they would know the details of Mikey's departure. Then you say you know why he was fired but you aren't going to share that info. Then when you get called out on THAT you start to back pedal.

Bottom line Ken, you're a hack. If you can find someone dumb enough to give you a paycheck for your writing...keep on keepin on. You got the system beat!

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Dryw Keltz March 19, 2012 @ 3:25 p.m.

"I wish everyone on the Mikey Show Facebook pages that agreed with me would comment here. We would take up all of the San Diego Readers server storage space."

M1, take a deep breath, replace "The Mikey Show" with "The Real World/Road Rules Challenge" and "the San Diego Reader's" with "MTV Networks" and you will get the idea. You are an adult but your tactics reflect those of a 13 year old girl. At some point, nearly everyone is going to have to deal with a show they love getting the can. The key is to cherish the good memories and move on with life. When Comedy Central cancelled Mystery Science Theater 3000 in the mid-90s I was distraught. I loved this show! So much so that I signed every online petition to get it back on the air that I could track down on the internets. Eventually myself, and my fellow pre-historic interneters, prevailed and The Sci-Fi Network brought back the program...and it stunk. Upon further reflection, it was obvious the show had peaked a couple years prior. I am sure, at the time, the ratings reflected this but, being a rabid fan, I refused to acknowledge the elephant in the room. M1 you may not see the elephant in the room right now but eventually you will. The Mikey Show was past its prime and no matter how great of a person Mikey was, his show wasn't delivering the goods to keep him on the air. HBO recently cancelled "Luck" because a third horse died during the shooting for the second season. After a lil' protest from Peta HBO pulled the plug on the program with little hesitation. It is of note here that the ratings for "Luck" stunk. HBO would have, literally, gone to war with Peta if they had tried to cancel "Game of Thrones" for the same reason. They would have driven tanks through the Peta corporate offices before they pulled the plug on their ratings juggernaut. Even if "Game of Thrones" had killed the only three remaining live dragons left on Earth (Note: If you don't watch "Game of Thrones" this portion of the argument may not make sense)during the filming of their second season, HBO would have spewed forth a press-release stating that the "dragons died for a noble cause" and the show would have remained in production. The lesson here is that if The Mikey Show was still bringing in the same RADIO listener numbers that it did while it was on 105.3, and the same potential advertising revenue, it would without a doubt still be going strong today. You can continue to micro-analyze and critique the comments people are making on here which paint Mikey as anything less than a saint but it will make little difference regarding the big picture. The events which lead to Mikey's departure from 105.3 were obviously driven by greed, and the events which lead to his departure from 94/9 were most certainly driven by the same.

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M1_12Gage March 22, 2012 @ 9 a.m.

While I agree with your first statement, it is easy for your to pick one sentence out of all of my posts and label it as "that of a 13 year old girl." I agree that I could have stated it better, but my point was that there are many, many Mikey Show fans that agree with me. And actually, your entire post is wrong. The majority if the current fans that were listening to the Mikey Show felt that the current show and crew were even better than before, when he was on 105.3. They created a connection with us that was not there at the old station. The problem was, when he went to 105.3, they already had a ton of listeners. Most of the younger crowd here in San Diego listen to 105.3....the 6-10am timeslot was already established because of Howard Stern, so when Mikey went in there he kept most of that crowd (which was why he was #1 most of the time on 105.3.) When he went to 94.9, it took months for a lot of people to even realize he was back on the air. Us fans of his knew it because he announced it on his page, but the casual listener did not. The ratings before him on 94.9 were not that good, so it was an uphill climb from the very beginning. While his show was even better, they just could not garner the ratings that they did before because most young people listen to 105.3 on the radio in the morning, and the old show kept a lot of those younger listeners. A lot of the Mikey Show fans are older, and while they would listen on the radio on their way in to work, most of them were listening via the internet at work, via the ipod app, or via podcasts later in the day. Again, he had more people listening to him than any other morning show, just not on the radio where the ratings are looking. Just look at the Mikey Show facebook page (which is still up)...it has almost double the fans of any other morning show page in San Diego.

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Infiniteuniverz March 20, 2012 @ 10:21 p.m.

Ken, I enjoyed the Mikey show. I consider myself an M1 simply because that is the title of fans of the Mikey show. I also enjoy pondering the wonders of baryon assymetry as well as imagining a world in which the Battle of Stamford Bridge did not happen at the same time as Williams invasion from Normandy. The things that give us pleasure really do not define us and some of us can actually love a performer and feel no need to lock step and follow every belief or word of our preferred entertainers.

It sickens me everytime someone mentions his Christin beliefs or his testimony on Fridays. Ken, who cares? What do you believe in? I am an atheist. Wait, that us not true. Unlike yourself I actually understand the implications of a Big Bang happening in a multiverse which now (replacing the Copenhagen Interpretation) seems to not be built on the collapse of the wave function but the sprouting of infinite separate universes. In short, Mr Everett was right-- we live in a universe in which every conceivable quantum state is realized.

If you have yet to open new windows and begin several searches on Wikipedia then you would agree that how is believing that there is a separate universe in which one copy of The Turn of The Screw had a typo on page 35 replace the word the with then any superior in believing a man named Jesus is the son of an omniscient, omnipotent and omnipresent Creator?

He was funny on air. He was self effacing. He knew he had flaws and he exposed them. Unlike Howard Stern his show was not one large inside baseball fractal of behind the scenes jokes. He spoke about his day, his children as well as what was going on in the world.

Ken the tree you have carved your name on is in a forgotten field and will be chopped down one day. I suspect that if you attempted to entertain more than one person for a few hours each day they would rather strip nude and start hiking to Alaska. It probably grows weary being trapped in that skull of yours, no?

But wait, you have a past time! You write for the San Diego Reader! And you sometimes find joy in writing negative things about a popular local entertainer who is out of a job. Despite what you may feel a lot of us loved Mikey and only wish him the best. Reading your article is tantamount to overhearing someone spew childish insults at your grandmother as she took too much time with her coupons at the grocery store.

I am sure you had dreams as a child, Ken. Well give up. This is what your lonely life has become-- is it not grand? Responding to comments on an article you wrote about a radio personality that is missed by many people on a blog for a free rag in San Diego. Seeing you flounder around in the bottom of a steel fishing boat is unbecoming. Go take a walk. Read something good! Expand your horizons! I suggest two books for your summer list: Persian Fire by Tom Holland and The Fabric of Reality by David Deutsch. Sorry for typos and such, taking a shit and on my iPhone.

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villageram March 20, 2012 @ 10:39 p.m.

HAH HAH!!! you wrote all this on iphone? You couldve read a book in the same time!! Maybe you have a lotta free time now that the cult is broke up! J/K!

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LurkSkywalker March 21, 2012 @ 6:46 a.m.

from the general manager of the station that hired and released mikey, reprinted without permission:

From Rick Jackson: Hi - I'd like to thank you for taking the time to write us and share your thoughts about FM 94/9. This is a general note instead of a personal response and for that - I apologize. We've had so many listeners write us that it's impossible to send a personal note to everyone in a timely fashion.

I want you to know that I've read every single email sent to our idea box. It's been very helpful, sometimes painful, occasionally funny but always important. Here are the questions and comments that seem to have cropped-up the most:

Question - "What happened with Mikey"?

Answer - Perhaps this seems like a cop-out but the plain and simple truth is, I can't answer that question. His departure is an internal, personnel matter and legally I am prevented from discussing anything related to that question. I apologize and I hope you can understand that this is equally frustrating for me because I have nothing to hide and prefer a culture of complete disclosure. In this case, it's not possible.

Question - "Can you bring Mikey back"?

Answer - No. It's over.

Question - "Will Steve, Lauren and Jay remain"?

Answer - Yes. We have some ideas and many of you have submitted your own about where 94/9 mornings should go from here. Our program director, Garett Michaels, is sitting in this week and we'll have an announcement this Monday about a more permanent solution.

Question - "Will you play music in the morning"?

Answer - Yes. We honestly don't know how much yet but music will definitely be a part of our morning programming.

Question - "Will you return to music only in the morning"?

Answer - No.

Those are the questions that seemed to be on the minds of most our listeners. Hopefully, I've answered the questions you have.

The biggest debate about the future of mornings on FM 94/9 is the question of music vs personality. We've had hundreds of emails from folks who want no part of a show that features music and a nearly equal number from those who want a music only show. And there are as many who would like both - though the idea of what that sounds like varies quite a bit.

This isn't an easy decision. Two years ago, the reason the station decided to feature more personality in the morning was because of poor listener support of our previous music intensive morning programming. We struggled for years with many different hosts but music was always the star and consistently, regardless of the host, mornings performed poorly.

We haven't forgotten that. At the same time it seems that most of you want at least some music when you wake up. That's certainly not true for everyone - but for most. We heard you and that's likely the direction we'll take.

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LurkSkywalker March 21, 2012 @ 6:46 a.m.

end the next part.....

Radio is an art. Not many practice the art of radio but it can be artfully delivered. The people who love this station understand that more than any station I've ever heard. Your letters are articulate, imaginative and thoughtful and I think I have a good understanding of who you are - collectively if not individually. This station needs to do a better job of defining it's mission and developing our culture. Garett and I have had inspired moments reading your comments and exalting in the quality of the people who have given us the direction we need to make some exciting things happen - both here and in this town.

We look forward to building and rebuilding FM 94/9 into the kind of station that will champion your spirit and do the kinds of things that make you proud to be a part of what we do.

Thanks for listening to FM 94/9.

Rick Jackson

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Dealwittit April 3, 2012 @ 11:52 a.m.

Wow I just can't believe the denial oozing from Mikey fans. Yea some of the statements in the article are here say but since Mikey is hiding out like a criminal on the run and 94.9 is mum on the issue that sort of thing will happen. I'm just a fan, but I called 94.9 the day after his departure...err firing...fully ready to rant and spoke to a well informed individual for a good 5mins or better. I was informed that this was totally not planned and that they got caught with their venerable pants down. Now isn't that obvious with what they had "ready" to replace him...huh...isn't it!? Or can't his fans even admit that simple conclusion? What is true is that he's "no longer under contract." Well, a fact about that is that he had 10mons left on his contract. In other words, he was fired with cause otherwise he would still be under contract and 94.9 would still owe him a good deal of money. If 94.9 had planned this they would've done what 105.3 and every other radio station in the history of radio does, waited for the contract to end and say...buh bye Mikey. Funny how they 94.9 kept the rest of the crew huh fans? Deja vue all over again. Sorry M1's, P1's et al...your hero has fallen...again...and based on the fact of his "midlife crisis" blog and his deafening silence..dude effed up badly and simply got fired for cause. Outside of relapse and or personal problems...uhh...what else is there, what could it be? The King is gone long live the King

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sageofsantee April 3, 2012 @ 5:41 p.m.

Did you mean "hearsay" anyway what was the hearsay? His ratings sucked, he slandered a competitor on air. so what was hearsay? He even said he was an addict on the air. Why shouldn't that be question that is brought up? (by the way, If he did go to rehab, he should be getting out right about now). If he didn't, why hasn't he spoken to you devoted groupies who hang on to his every word? You guys are pissed your radio Jesus has clammed up. Anyway, I wish 94/9 would go back to all music OR let those three talk on their own without music. Let's see how good they are.

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Dealwittit April 3, 2012 @ 8:32 p.m.

Well the "hearsay" is inferred because no one really knows...that is cuz no one's talking but...you and I actually view the fans the same...they can't believe he would do anything untoward...sorry about the brain fart and the misspelling I hope ur OK about it...oops there I go again...I meant You're or you are whatever yore comfortable with Professor

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sageofsantee April 4, 2012 @ 1:07 p.m.

Easy portnoy! Little touchy? Anyway the point is there was no hearsay or gossip. His ratings sucked. Plus the whole station went down in ratings when he was on the air. He made vile personal attacks on the air, and the station and Mikey aren't talking about the actual reason for the firing. So where is hearsay? There was no hearsay. There are rumors on the Facebook page if you want rumors. It seems like the old 94/9 listeners are slowly coming back, wouldn't you agree? The station seems more friendly and less, uh, distracted. People are getting along on air. There's not this toxic guy in the morning spraying pepper spray in the name of Jesus. I do hope Mikey comes back somewhere. His followers seem lost. Coincidence: My dog is named Say. When I want him to come I say "Here Say."

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Vorh33s23 April 6, 2012 @ 11:49 a.m.

I havent read through ALL the post here but i just wanted to add my two cents, I appreciate everyones opinions and you are entitled to them. I was never a strict listener of the Mikey Show but i did enjoy it when it was on and I am suprised by all this discussion. I thought he was a great talk show host, the show was funny. I am saddened by Mikey not being on air anymore. "The show" and whatever they are now calling the 94.9 version are both still good. I have no clue about ratings but i do know that when Mikey switched to 94.9 that was the first i ever started listening to that station. I think Mikey has done great things and i was angered by Capone running interference so i have stopped listening to 91X completely because of it. This article was biased in my opinion but i do not want to slam the writer, Mr. Leighton either. Every media now is biased to some degree, it is hard to find one that is purely neutral if not impossible. Anyway, i hope whatever happened with Mikey gets resolved and hope to hear him back on the air soon. Thanks for taking the time to read my post, this is my first one to ever get involved in. Good day everyone!

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MrSanDiegoPlayNicePlayFair April 9, 2012 @ 7:29 a.m.

I am extremely pleased! Probably not for reasons that you are -- but pleased nonetheless. If Mikey's ego had gotten any larger, he would have imploded and his mean-spirited antics would have eventually littered San Diego radio waves with no hope of redemption.

Mikey reminds me of ian benardo meets perez hilton wanna-be, but since Mikey was OUT LOUD about his non-loving (AKA- anti-christian) stance for homosexuals -- he wouldn't truly be able to take on that caliber of competition of being the wittiest cultural voices. In between Mikey's weekly rants about his testimony and what a great Christian role-model he is, he would jab at homosexuals and anyone who favored marijuana in society. It was a case of the pot calling the kettle black!

He'd get you to warm up to him one minute by parading his families journey with autism -- so you might think he is a nice guy. BUTTT!!!! He is not a nice guy. I wonder if that is why they got rid of him. I hope some higher ups with Lincoln put the kabosh on him FOR GOOD.

GET YOUR ACT TOGETHER MIKEY! You are funny, but not a nice or respectful person by any stretch of the imagination.

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sageofsantee April 11, 2012 @ 1:37 p.m.

It's one thing to be a radio bully and bash an entire group of people (like gays). Stern does it all the time. But the difference to me is that Stern is funny. Stern has talent. Stern is good radio. Mike Esparza was a non talent who got lucky at Rock 105. At 94/9 the old grey mare was finally put out of its misery. This guy was weak on the air. I can take ugly bile spewing. But if you play that way, you better be backed up by talent. Mikey was all about being saying ugly, mean things in the name of Jesus. And he didn't have the talent to back him up. This is one time where the bully got his due. Karma lives!

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dankness May 18, 2012 @ 7:50 a.m.

I agree with you Ken. Seems like the backlash you are getting here are from people just like Mikey himself; arrogant, ignorant and narcissistic. Mikey clearly offends more people than he pleases and just because his audience is louder than the rest, does not mean he is any more popular than anyone else. Good riddance, I might actually start listening to FM949 instead of NPR again.

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