Recalling the career of a radio personality who spent five decades on the air – Pasadena Star News

I came across two books recently, both of which have dissemination at heart. They’re written by former stars of radio and that trendy thing called TV, and great fun reads.

Bill Diehl’s “50 Years of Gossipy Celebrities” provides personal, behind-the-scenes insight into the celebrities and stars Diehl has interviewed throughout his own radio career. Starting locally, he had a long career with ABC Radio where he spent five decades – the first 36 years as a personal correspondent and later as a freelancer.

If you were a celebrity at that time, Diehl probably interviewed you: Mel Brooks, Carl Reiner, Charlie Chaplin, Celine Dion, Liza Minnelli, Tom Hanks, John Denver, Barbara Streisand, Tony Bennett, Peter Jennings, Esther Williams, Katherine Hepburn , Larry King, Sharon Stone, Steve Allen. They are all there, to name a few.

Diehl introduces the stars as the people they were and are, including personal recollections of the events leading up to the interviews as well as something interesting that may have happened while they were talking…like the moment he recalls Robin Williams asking to go home after the interview. “One of our assistants gave him five dollars,” Diehl recalls.

Diehl does not give up his name; he takes his job seriously and was actually one of the ABC Radio writers who pre-prepared and updated memorials for celebrities in case they died suddenly. In this book, he presents his interviewees as ordinary people, as one perhaps meets in the street.

It’s a fun read, not too intense and very entertaining. Worth checking out.

“In Bed with Broadcasting: A Memoir” by Ken Davis takes you on a journey through time with an award-winning writer, producer, editor and on-air journalist. Davis has spent most of his career in television — he began anchoring news on NBC affiliate KOAI-TV in Flagstaff when he was 20 — but his roots are in radio via working at university, so I think it’s OK to mention it here. Besides, TV is nothing more than a radio with pictures, right?

Davis calls broadcasting his “mistress,” and it helps set up the life story he tells of the trials, tribulations, occasional ethical issues, and people he’s encountered throughout his life. over 40 years in the business.

It tells the story of when he decided – finally – to dedicate an entire day to his family, only to almost miss the biggest news of the year. Or the time Walter Cronkite asked Davis what he thought of Cronkite’s replacement, Dan Rather, and then turned the conversation to Davis himself.

This one stands out because it shows how serious Cronkite was when it came to news.

“The old reporter heaved a deep sigh and tapped his long fingers on the table.” Davis wrote about the conversation he had. “You can’t just pretend to be an objective journalist. You have to follow the march,” Cronkite told him.

“Then he said something I’ve told journalism students over the years. “Respect your audience. A journalist’s only job is to hold a clear mirror and show honestly what happened. He leaned closer. “Opinions have no place in our business.

“‘Even my own kids don’t know how I vote,'” he recalled, telling Cronkite.

It’s an easy read that immerses you in the world of Davis, his family and his career, and the balance involved that sometimes becomes difficult to master. Insights and behind-the-scenes information help spark a renewed respect for true journalism, which often seems to be lacking today. Again, another highly recommended read.

Rush hours

Jim “Poorman” Trenton extends the reach of his Morning Rush show by simulcasting his entire show from 6 to 11 a.m. weekdays, except for the last hour, for the low-power community station KOCI (101.5 FM) show. It will be simulcast on Radio Suerte KLIE (90.3 FM), another low-power community station.

KOCI covers Costa Mesa and Newport Beach; KLIE is licensed in Fountain Valley but can be heard as far away as San Pedro, weather permitting. Both stations can be streamed on their web pages ( and as well as various smartphone apps.

Poorman says his show will remain exactly as it is now with a theme each morning for the songs that will be played. Each song should match the theme in some way. So, for example, if the theme was “the evening” or even “the fabric,” you might hear “Nights in White Satin” from the Moody Blues.

“It’s already an on-demand show,” says Poorman, “so you never really know what’s going to be played next. I’m really excited to see what new audiences come up with as suggestions.

KOCI will air the last hour of Morning Rush exclusively due to programming needs on KLIE.

Restaurant dreams

Speaking of Radio Suerte: Want to make your dreams come true? If your dream is to own a restaurant, Radio Suerte wants to help you.

Airing Wednesdays from 1 to 3 p.m., “The Frank Garcia Show” will provide advice and help anyone looking to open their own restaurant. Garcia’s background comes from his own life as a restaurateur and philanthropist, as the owner of La Casa Garcia in Anaheim and the founder of We Give Thanks, the nonprofit organization that sponsors the annual free Thanksgiving dinner at Honda Center.

According to station manager Maria Luisa Luna, Garcia is becoming more involved both in the station and in one of its activities of which she is most proud: feeding the homeless.

“We feel very lucky because since 1987 we have cared for the homeless and less fortunate in our communities thanks to the generosity of Radio Suerte star Victor Mendez. Frank Garcia has agreed to step in and from now on he will be sponsoring the International Penny Crusade by giving us all the food we need, lending his dishes and lending his delivery truck for us to deliver food to different destinations.

The station sponsors the events once a month.

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