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John Kiesewetter on the world of local and national TV

Senior Entertainment Reporter John Kiesewetter has been covering TV and media issues for 20 years. After joining the Cincinnati Enquirer in 1975 as a summer intern, he worked as a county government and suburban reporter; assistant city editor and suburban editor; and features editor supervising the Life section. He has a B.S. in journalism from Ohio University.

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Friday, October 12, 2007

Swing With Bing This Weekend

Nostalgia/Big Band WMKV-FM (89.3 and blows out regular programming this weekend for "#0 Hours with Bing," to commemorate the 30th anniversary of Bing Crosby's death, one of the greatest entertainers of the 20th century.

Starting at noon Saturday, WMKV-FM will air Bing's best songs, duets and old radio broadcasts, including some overseas World War II shows never heard in the U.S. The 30-hour marathon -- until 6 p.m. Sunday -- also includes interviews with jazz critic and Bing biographer Gary Giddins and producer Ken Barnes , and Bing's collaborations with jazz legends Bix Beiderbecke and Louis Armstrong, rocker David Bowie, comedian Bob Hope and singers Frank Sinatra, Rosemary Clooney and others.

"The Big Broadcast" old-time radio show 7-11 p.m. Saturday will be a "Bing Broadcast," with rare audio such as 1930 recording of Bing as a band singer to his final radio series in 1962 (with Rosemary Clooney), and cuts from some of his 3,400 radio shows.

Bing, who died at age 75 on Oct. 14, was a multimedia superstar. His "White Christmas" is the most popular record ever. He had 396 hits from 1927 to 1962, as a solo artist and band singer. He had 38 No. 1 hits (compared to 24 by the Beatles and 18 by Elvis). He was the No. 1 box office star of the World War II era (1944-48).

Bing also helped revolutionize recording technology, by financing and popularizing the development of audio tape. In 1946 he was the first to record his ABC show for radio, which was a live performance medium until that time.

This will be a real treat for those of whom Bing was soundtrack to their lives.


at 10/13/2007 9:52 AM Blogger George Zahn said...

Here's the Saturday lineup on WMKV 89.3FM, streaming everywhere at All times EDST

Noon-4pm Tom Sandman Plays the Hits of Bing
4-5pm In Concert with Ken Luther-Bing Crosby
5-7pm Sandman Standards--2 Hour tribute to Crosby
7-Midnight "The Bing Broadcast" with Mike Martini and Mark Magistrelli--classic radio appearances

at 10/13/2007 9:55 AM Blogger George Zahn said...

And here's the Sunday Lineup..89.3FM and streaming at

Midnight-6am "Bing and Frineds" with Mark Magistrelli
6-10am "Bing-A Musical Autobiograpy"-Decca 1954
10am-2pm Mark Magistrelli and author Gary Giddins with plenty of Bing tunes
2-3pm Bing on Broadway
3-6pm Big Band Bing with Mark Magistrelli

Thanks for listening!

at 10/13/2007 9:56 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's extremely frustrating being unable to receive WMKV clearly, even in southern Butler County. Yes, listening over the Internet seems like a reasonable alternative, but then again, you'd have to stay glued to your computer for hours on end (30 hours for this Bing Crosby salute -- yeah, right!). Why don't the technology gurus responsible for "The Big Broadcast" make their shows available via podcast? And a larger question -- after purchasing WVXU, why did the geniuses at Cincinnati Public Radio ditch "The Big Broadcast"? It's FAR better than the constantly repetitive "Golden Age of Radio" series that replaced it. How many times can we old time radio fans listen to the same episodes of Superman, Burns & Allen and Gunsmoke? Over and over again, every couple of weeks, the SAME EPISODES turn up. What's going on, WVXU? Can't you do better than this? If not, can't you kiss and make up with Mike Martini and Mark Magistrelli?

at 10/14/2007 4:46 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

What I've heard of the Bing marathon has been utterly delightful. Really well done. Unfortunately This tiny station is an Alamo of lost causes like Bing Crosby and old radio and whatever else was trashed from WVXU when UC took over. WMKV's "reception" is a joke. Even Brian Patrick's Catholic Sacred Heart of Radio (whatever its called) does better. It's embarassing to our community that fanatic religious broadcasters of every persuasion can be heard, even pervs get a decent shot on WAIF, but this interesting station can't even get into downtown Cincy. I've called the station but they say the FCC won't allow WMKV to get any bigger. The FCC should either let WMKV get a signal that doesn't crap out after 5 minutes on the road, or the old folks home that runs the place should shut the thing down entirely and put in a good hot tub or something.

at 10/15/2007 8:26 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks to WMKV for keeping these things alive and fresh and sounding better than they did originally. We have a gem dedicated to preserving our audio heritage. They should collaborate with the historical society.

at 10/15/2007 1:32 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Message to Anonymous 10/13 9:56 PM:

Podcasts of Big Broadcast are available weekly on Apple iTunes. I've been downloading them since January and the quality is just great. They also give you an extra hour of Inner Sanctum and Lights Out that WMKV doesn't carry.

I totally agree about WVXU's Golden Age of Radio being a lousy and repetitive substitue for Big Broadcast. Once i got the podcast going I stopped listening to WVXU's saturday show completley. In car terms, Martini and Magistrelli and WMKV have the Mercedes while WVXU is stuck with a rusty old Yugo.

at 10/15/2007 2:45 PM Anonymous Tom Sandman said...

THANK YOU for the kind words regarding 89.3 WMKV and our "30 Hours with Bing." A few notes:

WMKV is beginning to podcast! Later this week, you'll be able to go to the I-tunes tab at to download the first 5 hours of our Bing special, then re-visit for a new 5-hour dose every week for the next 5 weeks. Also, our old-time radio extravaganza, "The Big Broadcast" (Saturdays 7-11 PM) has been pod-castable for a while now.

WMKV continues to search for ways to increase our power and better serve our listeners. Not easy when 8 of the best radio signals are controlled by just one firm here in Cincinnati.

Finally, good timimg: WMKV is planning to partner with the Cincinnati Museum Center and its Cincinnati History branch for future programs & projects. Stay tuned!

Thanks again!

at 10/17/2007 12:23 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Last letter is correct--forget the Burns & Allen, and all the unfunny segments of old radio. They are gone and forgotten, stick with the music, it never gets old, especially Sinatra,Crosby,all good stuff.Do a weekend again

at 10/17/2007 3:33 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I find it a damn shame WMKV's signal is so weak. There is a nitch for this type of programming for the folks over 50 or 60 to listen to etc. Somebody, including the Corporate Giant that controls everything in this town cant be more understanding in this arena. But, I guess Corporate money making greed rules!! Oh well, at least there is 90.9

at 10/17/2007 7:56 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey! What's with the "over 50-60" talk??? I'm nowhere near "AARP" age and I listen to WMKV whenever possible, usually in the car 'cuz I can't pick it up at home. But it's true, it would be a lot better if they could start broadcasting from 90.9. Or maybe WGUC can just start replacing the CSO with Sinatra and Bing and old radio shows like Bold Venture :)

at 10/17/2007 10:32 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nice to see that the WMKV folks are actually reading and responding to items posted here! Not too many media people care at all what their listeners think...

Suggestion for Tom Sandman (who was missed *greatly* after WRRM ended his great Sunday Evening Standards) -- how about podcasting your WMKV "Standards" programs too?

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