Friday, March 09, 2007

MIKE BULLARD IS BACK!


First, here's a big positive writeup in the Toronto Sun about Mike Bullard's successful comeback as an on-air comedian, hosting his morning show on XM Satellite Radio after so many years on TV with the successful Mike Bullard Show.

Now, here's the big writeup the next day, where the writer revealed----oops!--- that Mike got the can. And apparently they ran that positive piece the other day without knowing that Mike had gotten the can. The bad news was confirmed at www.JudyCroon.com. Budget cuts are supposed to be the reason why the show's over. I think maybe this XM/Sirius merger business might have something to do with it.

Either way, the headline is correct. Mike Bullard is back... on the street.

Here's the rant by Paul Romanuk about Bullard's departure and the whole state of the radio industry and all that. Romanuk said the radio industry was notorious for sackings and for stations going under. Actually, Romanuk has some bitter personal experience. He was part of the big bloodbath at CHUM 1050 when they dropped the all-sports Team format and shut down the national network that they had going at the time. I know that he ended up suing CHUM and there were a lot of hard feelings. Anyway Romanuk says radio is notorious for dumping people on the street and changing formats on a whim.

Sometimes it can't be helped. Lots of AM stations dumped music and switched to talk radio when FM took off, so stations had to change formats just to survive. Sometimes it leads to a better product. But when CHUM dropped sports it went the El Cheapo route, playing cheap oldies--- the same format they dumped to go all sports to begin with.

It reminds me of the scene in that movie Private Parts, where Howard Stern was on the air at that rock station in Detroit, and it suddenly went country and Stern was left looking for a new job. That scene wasn't an act, that's pretty much what happened to him in Detroit. Format changes are a fact of life in the radio business and it isn't pretty sometimes. Lots of name personalities can be booted at the drop of a hat. In Toronto, personalities get canned all the time. Folks like Humble and Fred, and Carla Collins, and even Erin Davis, can go from prominent hosting gigs to the street in no time.

Some stations have a lot of stability-- ie. Fan 590, 680 News, and CFRB 1010. And of course the CBC. But even they deal with personnel changes a lot. I know CFRB had a bit of a shakeup in December of last year.

I sure didn't expect Bullard to be out of a job so quickly, especially when it appeared a lot of people were starting to discover that he was on XM and were buying radios so they could listen to him. Anyway, maybe some station will take pity on him and give him a new gig--- and maybe stick with him, for a change.

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