Monday, February 9, 2009

Sadness. No More Russ Belville. RIP The Radical Writ.

One of lefty talk radio's best kept secrets (and sadly so) was The Russ Belville Show. I say was because his program was just yanked:

It saddens me to report that I have just received a call from the VP of Original Talk for the newly-merged XM/Sirius Satellite Radio to inform me that, effective immediately, The Russ Belville Show will no longer air on satellite radio. This will also mean no more replays on AM 620 KPOJ as well.

It has been a fantastic experience, from entering the local KPOJ contest and winning to visiting Washington DC for the first time to win the national contest. I’ve met Thom Hartmann, Ed Schultz, Bill Press, and other behind-the-scenes radio professionals, all of whom have been extremely generous in helping me to become a talk radio host. I’ll never forget it.

Russ Belville "won" a spot on the dial because, about three years back, more or less, there was a "Next Great Progressive Talk Star" competition (you heard it on KPOJ). Russ won, with high praise from Ed Schultz.

He won a year's production and support and then he was on his own, but after that he had a cracking good show. He's an interesting bird, Russ: NORML activist, unapologetic liberal, and had a very enjoyable program. It was broadcast on Sundays in the morning, admittedly, not the best time to gain an audience.

If any of you thought that all you had to do was talk hard and have an opinion to have a future in the radio biz, I guess this is your proof that the stars also had to align for you.

Russ is going to be returning to his roots in pro-cannabis activism (a passion I don't share but I liked the way he challenged me to think deeply about it).

We wish him well. We'll be missing his show.

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