Metro Detroit: May 2005 Archives

35 Years and Still Going Strong



Tomorrow Active Rock WRIF-FM 101.1 Detroit afternoon jock and radio legend Arthur Penhallow will mark 35 years of being on the airwaves of Metro Detroit. It's a rare feat to log so many years in one town -- let alone in a career -- these days. It's hard to believe that Penhallow's WRIF career started back in 1971... when WRIF itself was still basically in its infancy as a rock station.

Throughout his reign on the Detroit airwaves, "Big Daddy" Arthur P has developed relationships with numerous rock and roll acts across the decades, including Bob Seger, The J. Geils Band, Aerosmith, Metallica, and Kid Rock. Here in Detroit he has built his legend not only with his trademark phrases (“Baby!”) but also with his annual “Maui Time” trip where select winners each year head off to the warm sun and sand of Maui for a week long vacation with the “Grand Poobah”.

The long running tenure of Big Daddy along with his legendary party animal personality have brought him numerous honors, such as being inducted into the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, an honor typically reserved for musical acts only. And more recently, he also had a supporting role in the Mike Binder film “The Upside of Anger” in which he played himself as the afternoon drive host on, where else, WRIF.

In celebration of his unmatched achievement of 35 years on the air in the same time slot, 101 WRIF will be running a special afternoon drive show tomorrow starting at 3pm when Big Daddy takes over the Riff rock ‘n’ roll controls. A variety of guests from Kid Rock, Sammy Hagar, and Rob Halford to Iggy Pop and Peter Wolf will all be calling in to wish Arthur a “Happy Anniversary” and reminisce about the last 35 years on the air.

It's great to give some recognition to a personality that rock fans of all ages remember growing up with. Congrats Arthur!





Detroit media outlets are reporting tonight that former WYCD-FM 99.5 midday host Erin Weber has been awarded $10 million in her civil suit against the station. Weber developed an allergy to strong perfumes after an exposure to nail polish remover in a WYCD studio and was eventually fired from the station after it appears the accommodations needed to deal with the allergy caused strained relations between Weber and station management in place at the time. The suit had asked for "only" $6 million - apparently the jury that heard the case believed that either enough harm was caused to Weber that the award asked for wasn't sufficient enough to cover the damages or that they wanted to punish the station severely for its actions.

Of course WYCD and parent Infinity Broadcasting will appeal the decision -- but this certainly has to send a message to more than just the bosses at WYCD...

The hard part for the people currently at WYCD will be overcoming the actions that were taken by people that are no longer working there-- the person that fired Weber has since moved on as has the former general manager. It'll be interesting to see how long the legal eagles from Infinity can drag this process out before having to pay up- if they ever do.

Update 5/24:
* DJ takes in sweet smell of victory- Detroit Free Press
* Radio DJ wins $10.6 million in stink over perfume- Detroit News


Detorit rocker WRIF-FM (101.1) will join the countless numbers of radio stations across the country featuring 'shuffle' programming when this weekend it offers up a special "Memorial Weekend Shuffle". The RIFF will open up the music vaults to showcase some of the greatest rock tunes from the last three decades in a celebration of the Motor City's love of all things rock.

The station promises to play all the RIFF rock you’ve loved since taking over the 101.1 airwaves 34 years ago. From deep cuts, B sides and your favorites to current hits, the Memorial Weekend Shuffle will highlight it all, from “oh wow” to right now and everything in between. The weekend special will also feature giveways to see Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith along with copies of the new Star Wars video game and a limited edition Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith movie poster. The station will be in shuffle mode from 6pm Friday 'til 11:30am Monday and then plans on airing a similar specialty program every Saturday from 6-10am.


Detroit News:

Warren and Detroit are strange bedfellows in a knuckleheaded television production that ought to result in the yanking of their licenses to produce cable programming. The two communities collaborated on a short video attacking Steve Wilson, the attack-dog reporter for WXYZ-TV Channel 7... Warren, Detroit Wrong to Use Cable Show to Target Reporter, Tue 5/31

Detroit Free Press:

The chairman of the Detroit Cable Commission says the city is broadcasting an attack on a local TV reporter over the chairman's objections, and despite his concern that the program could cause trouble with the Federal Communications Commission... Report attacks TV newsman; official frets about sanctions, Wed 5/25

Here, by key time period, are Detroit results from Nielsen Media Research's May sweeps ratings period, which ended Wednesday... MAY SWEEPS RESULTS: Channel 7 rules the A.M.; 'Today' show slips, Fri 5/27

Ruminate over last week's monthly Arbitrend report card on radio ratings and your perspective changes... Clear Channel, Infinity lead local radio ratings, Mon 5/30

When I broadcast baseball play-by-play, I had two major hobbies -- playing golf and writing music. My partners and I always welcomed anyone connected with either endeavor into our radio booth. Sometimes our visitors went on the air with us. More often, they simply enjoyed watching the games.... ERNIE HARWELL: In booth, hobby was music to my ears, Tue 5/31

Oakland Press:

It’s not the kind of publicity that country WYCD-FM (99.5) was looking for. This week, a federal jury in Detroit awarded $10.6 million to former midday air talent Erin Weber who was fired by the station in 2001 — after complaining that a co-worker’s perfume made her sick... Country station says it will appeal $10.6 M suit, Fri 5/27

All Access:

Today (5/31), ABC Hot AC WDVD/DETROIT, MI held their "PEDAL FOR PISTONS TRYCYCLE RACE" at the PALACE in AUBURN HILLS, home of the DETROIT PISTONS. Ten contestants competed for a pair of playoff tickets to see game 4 of the PISTONS and MIAMI HEAT series tonight.

More stories:


News/Talk 760 WJR will again bring live coverage from the 2005 Detroit Regional Chamber Mackinac Policy Conference. The three days of meetings, discussions and speeches traditionally result in a number of breaking news stories heard first on WJR. Tune in to hear a Who's Who of guests as Paul W. Smith (5:30am-9am) and Frank Beckmann (9am-11:30am) broadcast LIVE on Thursday, June 2 and Friday, June 3 from the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island. Then, join Paul W. Smith LIVE as he hosts the annual "Big Four" on Saturday, June 4th from 10:30 AM-Noon. Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, Oakland County Executive L. Brooks Patterson, Wayne County Executive Robert Ficano and Macomb County Commission Chair Nancy White will participate in this lively, topical, roundtable discussion, surrounding significate issues facing southeast Michigan. The Big Four will be re-broadcast on News/Talk 760 WJR on Sunday, from 4:30-6pm.







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About this Archive

This page is a archive of entries in the Metro Detroit category from May 2005.

Metro Detroit: April 2005 is the previous archive.

Metro Detroit: June 2005 is the next archive.

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