Friday, June 08, 2007

"It's time to take our audience back. We have great brands, let's invest in them again. The age of cutting is over. Consolidation 2.0 is on. And it's all about the operators. I love that!" Bill Figenshu

Fig checked in; today's quotation is from his email. Bravos Fig! A good broadcaster and a gentleman. The outfit lucky enough to sign him may reasonably expect nothing less than great things to happen.

A bunch of emails about the Eric Zorn writing on Chicago things gone but not forgotten. Mel Markon's was on Lincoln Park West just south of Fullerton. America's #1 morning radio anchor, Lee Harris, pings and reminds me...another Chicago late nite hang was close by - the Medina on Clark. Programming ace Tom Teuber weighs in with his Chicago list...The Little Corporal, The Brief Encounter, Punchinellos, Riccardo's, The Bergoff, Eli's, and Medici on Surf. The Little Corporal was a Lyle Dean and Fred Winston favorite, as "the kid" on staff they would send me off on early morning "breakfast runs" - the help at the joint well knew the preferences of Mr Dean and Mr Winston. Tom goes on to add some Madtown favs...Holy Mackeral, Big Mama and Uncle Fats, the original Ella's on State Street.

My first days in Madison, way back when, I recall The Brat House on State being an incredible value, not so today. Living at Langdon Hall I enjoyed walking around the corner to eat at the "counter" of the Rennebohm Drug store. Trips to the Twin Cities in those days always included dinner at the Nankin Cafe.

Method in Mel's madness: Getting $250 mil in senior from Morgan Stanley buys Mel more time and creates the war chest needed for his coming renewed battle with XM. My sense is the merger is dead and Mel knows it. The FCC opened their formal inquiry into the merger today. My odds remain 6 to 5 against.

Reading Mel's mail: David Rehr writes Mel a three page letter requesting the merger application be withdrawn. The letter, in pdf format, here.

The big four: Google, Microsoft, Yahoo and AOL captured 85% of the gross online ad dollars in 2006. The top ten online sites, the big four included, captured 99% of all gross ad dollars in 2006. Jeffrey F. Rayport writing at MarketWatch says Advertising's death is greatly exaggerated, a good read here.

Hot fun in the summertime: Sean Ross bows his annual handicapping - The Summer Song of 2007. Read his nominees and jump into the conversation with your own pick here.

Summer reads: NPR's Susan Stamberg favors us with Booksellers' Picks for the Beach - or the Backyard.

Spanish grapes: Another fine Tempranillo. My quest to find good red wines for $10 or less continues. Montecillo Crianza 2002, Bodegas Montecillo. Noteworthy bottle since the 2002 grapes were not exceptional. Cheers!

Bonus: A favorite waste of bandwidth - cykam airtos online game. Warning: addictive. Enable audio, click on new game and enjoy!

Have a wonderful weekend.