On March 22, Dicky Barrett, former front man for the Mighty Mighty Bosstones, was fired from his position as host of Indie 103.1‘s morning program, The Mighty Morning Show. The reason for the firing, according to Indie 103.1 station GM Dawn Girocco:
“We have been working with Dicky for the past five months trying to get the show to the next level.. We invested a lot into not only the show, but in promoting and coaching him. Unfortunately it takes a lot of work to build and grow a morning show as well as develop interesting, compelling content. This was not Dicky’s priority, as he had other commitments with Jimmy Kimmel Live, which was, in his words, ‘his bread and butter.’ Everyone at Indie has a tremendous commitment to the station and to the audience. We need to have a morning show that is able to make Indie their #1 priority.”
Barrett disgrees with this statement, and had the following to say in rebuttal:
Jimmy Kimmel is a great guy who supported the Mighty Morning Show, and loved it, even though he helped to build the Kevin and Bean Show on KROQ and is the Producer of the Adam Carolla Morning Radio Show.
The man hired to “coach” me “trying to get the show to the next level” Dan Kieley said “Dicky is a true talent and a radio star” and “it’s a great Morning Show.” I was fired for being unwilling to be, in Dawn Girocco’s words “more mainstream.” It was a great morning show. It is unfair to let people think I walked away to put more work into loudly reading twenty to thirty words a night on Jimmy’s T.V. show. I worked hard on the Mighty Morning Show. I along with Stacey, Chuck, and Liz, built and grew it to what it was. You could count on it (for the most part) to provide you with interesting, compelling content and better music then any other show on the air in the morning.
The Mighty Morning Show ran for about a year, from March of 2005, until last week. Barrett has been the announcer for Jimmy Kimmel live since 2003, which was about the time the Bosstones went on extended hiatus. I never got a chance to hear what the Mighty Mornign Show sounded like, as I’m usually at work when it aired in LA, or out running errands if I’m off. From what I’ve read, though, it seems like the show was pretty popular. Sad to see something like what Dicky describes below happen at what I’ve always found to be a cool radio station. Now, I can’t say I listen to Indie 103.1 as much as I would were it on the air out here in the midwest, but when I’ve tuned in (especially to shit like Jonesy’s Jukebox), it’s been as cool a station as I could have hoped for.
The full story of what happened, according to Dicky:
The station was built to fuck with KROQ (Infinity) by people from KISS-FM (Clear Channel) it was just supposed to be a short lived pain in the ass that that took away a few ratings points, and talked some shit about KROQ – Inadvertently (and you can credit Steve Jones and the other celebrity DJ’s) it became good, and got a lot of national attention, and credible press “the coolest station in America” rolling stone etc. At that point the FCC said Clear Channel who operated Indie 103.1 out of the Entravision offices could no longer do so – All business ties on paper we’re severed – It became a full Entravision property – But the hard right leaning Clear Channel program director and station manager (along with a lot of the behind the scenes technical employees) were already firmly in place – It is in Clear Channel’s best interest that Indie 103.1 exist – the PD, Michael Steele (who brags about “breaking Britney Spears”) and the station manager, Dawn Girocco (a long time radio sales women) are believing their own hype and considering themselves radio geniuses who masterminded the Indie 103.1 phenomenon, so it’s now time to implicate their superior “radio wisdom” and conventional “radio strategy” – #1) Morning shows need to be musically formatted and the music needs to be heavily rotated – #2) All guests must be approved by Michael Steele (Dawn Girocco really, she’s Dick Cheney, Steele’s George Bush) “no guests to controversial soccer moms are listening in the a.m.” – There were other things that were more annoying, then actually detrimental to the show “say the time, and call letters till your blue in the face” – I reluctantly, and unhappily against my better judgment went along with all this for about two weeks, hoping they would come to their senses – During this time they brought in a longtime radio guru, to consult (he also worked at one point for Clear Channel) – His assessment was the show was “really good” and I was a “legitimate talent and a potential radio star” – Not the information these people wanted me to have – When I made an on air remark about not liking the new overplayed Morrissey track I was marched into the President of Entravisions office (Jeff Lieberman, a fan of Mighty Morning show) – In front of me, Jeff told Dawn he was not prepared to “strip Dicky of his opinion” she was obviously and visibly embarrassed – Then he asked her if she gave me the book about morning radio that he gave her to give to me “no, it’s at home” she said, “why the hell, is it there” he asked, she looked humiliated – This was the beginning of the end for me, and the writing was most likely on the wall – Two weeks after that I had a substantial, unauthorized, pro-choice conversation on the air with a South Dakota disc jockey and a few callers, the straw that broke the camels back – This is not the direction supporters of the current administration want the station going in.
– I was fired that day
-I loved doing the show and loved the people who loved it
Contact Indie 103.1 and express your disappointment call #877.900.1031 or or e-mail Michael Steele (program director).
the Mighty Mighty Bosstones – “Everybody’s Better”
the Mighty Mighty Bosstones – “Another Drinkin’ Song“