Sunday, March 2, 2008

Geronimo decides to take the leap into private life

The one bad thing about moving away for the Washington DC area is not being able to turn on the radio and hearing the Don and Mike Show, a show featuring a pair of Radio DeeJays that I had been listening to for about 20 years. From the first time I had heard them when they were "the Morning Zoo" at 105.1 WAVA (a Top 40 Station), it was obvious that Don Geronimo and Mike O'Meara had a genuine chemistry which is a rarity in the cut-throat world of commercial radio.

But it seems like that chemistry will broken when Geronimo does his last show on May 30th; a move which is due to major factors like the death of his wife and the change in regulating the commercial terrestrial radio airwaves. Geronimo touched on these points in an interview with the Washington Post last week. If you are not familiar with the show, here's an excerpt for the aforementioned piece describing what the show used to do prior to 2004 as well as Don's explanation for leaving the show:

"I'm going to be 50 in September," Geronimo says. "You change as a person. Maybe what you did when you were 35, you find it old and tedious now, regardless of Janet Jackson or Freda's passing. Even if you took all the restrictions off now, I don't know if I'd be up for all the shenanigans we did."

Of course, Don and Mike's die-hard fans -- who have made the show a ratings powerhouse in afternoon drive time here and in 25 other cities where the program is syndicated -- may lament the passing of some of the show's raunchier antics, such as taking a busload of listeners to Intercourse, Pa., to have sex in motel rooms while the hosts narrated the event on the air.

"This is certainly not the climate for something like that," Geronimo says now.

Nor do Don and Mike any longer subject celebrity interview guests to their patented sex quiz, which would get quite explicit back in the day.

Hearing those two radio bits reminded me how fun the show used to be; even if Geronimo's claim later in the interview that the show sounds better than ever before comes off like weak sauce. Even though the rest of the crew will continue as "The Mike O'Meara Show" which may be just as good as the original but for me, there will be something missing. And it won't be just just the guy behind the mike. It will be all those memories of listening to two guys talk about anything and everything that would usually start off with a proclamation of "We're fat, we're white , We're catholic and we're sick about it!" They never got any complaints from me.

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