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1/22/98 - Behind-The-Scenes

We've been pulled off WTLK in Jacksonville.  A real bite in the bag.  WTLK
Program Director Steve Fox is a great guy and BIG fan (a Doo-Wop nut), but he
couldn't fight the "suits" who insisted on a new direction.  We can only
continue to do the best Show HERE in D.C. in hopes of returning to
Jax..Atlanta..L.A...NYC, and all the other places that really would get a boost
out of a hot morning show.  'TLK didn't have the stick, power or format to help
in the cause.(see attached Times Union article)

In other news...hope you caught Jim Cook (Mr. Samuel Adams) on today's Show.
Thanks for the Sammie, Jim...GREAT GUEST.  His best insight..they have Samuel
Adams in stock at the White House and he thinks it may have "lubricated a few

DC fans look for an announcement on the "Greatest Hits" available in a local
music chain in the next week.  And, plans are in the work for the 2nd Annual
"Greaseman Trap and Skeet Fun Shoot" in May.   Watch DIS space!!

Bill Scanlan

From the Florida Times Union:

Thursday, January 22, 1998
Story last updated at 7:04 p.m. on Wednesday, January 21, 1998
Greaseman's off local radio dial once again

By Charlie Patton
Times-Union television writer

As he had been doing every weekday for more than a year, Larry Alexander
set his clock radio so he could wake up Monday morning to the ''basso
profundo'' sounds of The Greaseman, who Alexander calls ''the eighth
wonder of the world.''

Instead, the 48-year-old insurance salesman found himself listening to
''another classic rock station.''

Last Friday afternoon, WTLK (106.5 AM), switched formats, abandoning the
programming known variously as ''adult talk'' or ''real radio'' for a
classic rock format.

The station is in the middle of an automated run that promises 10,000
songs in a row. It has dropped all its syndicated talk shows, including
The Greaseman and Don and Mike.

As a result, Alexander said, he's ''feeling a little depressed'' this

Also feeling blue was Uncle Greasy himself, a one-time Jacksonville
radio legend who is discovering the truth in the phrase ''you can't go
home again.''

''I'm feeling kind of sad,'' he said in a call from Washington, D.C.,
where his daily talk show originates.

In the late 1970s and early 1980s, The Greaseman, the on-air persona
adopted by Doug Tracht, was Jacksonville's dominant radio personality.
Wild, outrageous and raunchy, the pioneering shock jock helped keep the
now-defunct WAPE AM the dominant station in Jacksonville, even in the
face of the rise of FM radio.

Tracht took his act to Washington in 1982. But in the fall of 1996, he
returned, sort of, to Jacksonville when WTLK, a new station, began
simulcasting his show from 6 to 10 a.m. daily.

Linda Byrd, general manager of a six-station group that includes WTLK,
said the decision to drop The Greaseman and change formats was based
strictly on ratings. WTLK simply hadn't caught on with listeners the way
she had hoped, she said. She praised Tracht as ''a real nice guy,'' who
worked hard to make his show successful in Jacksonville.

Tracht admitted, ''The ratings never kicked in to the massive degree
that we hoped.''

But he said the crowds that showed up for his Jacksonville appearances
convinced him the problem was a lack of aggressive promotion. ''One of
the most frustrating things would be that I'd be having a drink in some
bar in Jacksonville and someone would recognize me and say, 'Hey, I used
to listen to you,' '' Tracht said. ''And he'd have no idea I was back on
the air in Jacksonville.

''There's got to be some broadcast genius in Jacksonville who can figure
out a way to market The Grease.''

Mark Schwartz, general manager of six Jacksonville stations including
WAPE (95.1 FM), where The Greaseman's one-time sidekick Hoyle Dempsey is
part of the station's morning drive-time team, said he would consider
picking up the Greaseman's show for one of his stations. ''Clearly the
man has roots on WAPE,'' he said.

But memories are short in radio, he noted, and being a legend in the
1970s doesn't necessarily translate into being a legend in the 1990s.
''When you've been out of the picture for over 10 years, it's tough,''
Schwartz said.

Rooting for someone to give the legend one more try is Dick Melkerson, a
51-year-old schoolteacher who listened to The Greaseman while driving
each morning from the Beaches to the Westside.

''He got me to work every morning,'' Melkerson said. ''He's just very
funny, with a different kind of humor. He has a gift.''

''I'll do whatever it takes,'' vowed Alexander. ''Grease needs to come
to back . . . We're not going to go down without a fight.''