Monday, December 17, 2007

Air America Radio to Drop the Young Turks Next Month

The Young Turks Show will be dropped from the Air America Radio line-up next month, according to announcements by the surviving Turk -- Cenk Uygur -- and a spokesperson for the liberal talk radio network.

Uygur, confirmed that the Turks relationship with Air America will end amicably on January 15. Speaking to his listeners at a hastily arranged podcast earlier today, Uygur said that a new venture would be started, at that time, which will involve the internet.

When the Young Turks were added to AAR’s line-up in September, 2006 there were three of them – Uygur, Jill Pike, and Ben Mankiewicz. Pike left in July and Mankiewicz dropped out in August. Since that time, Uygur has essentially worked alone.

AAR’s publicist, Anne Strahle told Talking Radio earlier today that AAR and the Young Turks mutually agreed to end their show. "The reason being", according to Strahle, is that "their show will be going in a different direction."

AAR has not announced how they plan to fill the Turk’s 6-9 AM ET time slot.

This represents the second weekday show dropped by the liberal talk radio network since the Green brothers – Stephen and Mark – took over the bankrupt network, earlier this year. The Air Americans, featuring several AAR hosts including Mark Riley, Laura Flanders, David Bender, Robert F. Kennedy Jr. and Mike Papantonio was dropped from the weekday line-up in August.

In a separate development, Dave Kaufman, AAR's VP of Affiliate Relations leaves the company to take a position with RBR/TVBR Trade Publications.

During his podcast today, Uygur was very upbeat about the future of the Young Turks franchise. He said that he was looking forward "a new direction" for the show and "couldn’t wait until he could tell everyone about it."

Uygur dismissed rumors that were circulating on the internet this morning that he was being suspended by AAR for drinking beer (to celebrate the anniversary of the end of prohibition) or for slamming Democratic party leaders like Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV).

"Let’s put the rumors about Air America Radio aside," Uygur said. "The termination of the Young Turks Show was agreed too amicably."

The Young Turks never got much traction, despite the fact that there is not much competition in the early morning time period on liberal talk radio stations. Only 16 of the 50 plus stations that carry four or more AAR hosts picked up the Turks. The Turks also held the 6-9 AM slot on XM’s Air America Channel.

Rumors circulated on internet message boards that the Turks would return to Sirius Satellite Radio. (Before joining the AAR line-up, the Turks were carried by Sirius for several years.) Uygur would not confirm or deny these rumors on his podcast today.

One talk radio host must be very happy about AAR’s plans to drop the Turks. Bill Press, who’s 6-9 AM EST talk show is distributed by Jones Radio, would appear to be a strong candidate for carriage in the time slots soon to vacated by the Turks.

The Young Turks was definitely a different type of talk show. When Pike and Mankiewicz were on the show if often delved into non-political talk about sex and entertainment. It definitely appealed to a younger demographic than other shows on AAR’s weekday line-up. The Turks also offered a video feed of the daily radio show.

This irreverent style was displayed last month when Uygur threatened to sue Stephen Colbert for allegedly stealing one of his jokes.

While it’s hard to believe that Uygur is not unhappy about his departure from the AAR weekday line-up, there is no doubt that he is very happy that he doesn’t have to wake up in the middle of the night to do his radio show. Since the Turk's show originates from Los Angeles, Uygur had to go on the air at 3 AM PST.


Anonymous said...

No buzz. No listeners. No chance.

I suppose the easiest thing for Air America would be to pop the New York show onto the bird.

Or they could let Bill Press take the slot.

Ron Kuby is on the beach. So is Stacy Taylor, and Neil Rogers is trying to get there.

Anonymous said...

they're getting rid of the all the progressive folks

Anonymous said...

How come they don't put a good commentator like Mark Levine on? Are they afraid of facts and figures?

Speaking of Mark Levine, how come you don't link to

Jill said...

Why not give Sam Seder that slot? For that matter, why not bring on Lee Rayburn or Stacy Taylor?

Anonymous said...

Air America is broke and the idiots running the company will have it back in bankruptcy court within 6 months...or sooner.

What a waste...

Anonymous said...

Article posted at 9:08 pm.

Jill asks for a Sam Seder comeback at 7 am.

Maybe somebody should fix up Jill and Sam on a date. You don't often see somebody who likes somebody else that much.

I have to admit though, every time Air America makes change what they end up with is worse than what they had before (OK except maybe Franken -> Hartmann and Majority Report -> Maddow).

But otherwise, all down hill
Unfiltered -> Jerry -> Seder -> Lionel.
Malloy -> Elliot
Morning Sedition -> Young Turks -> ??
I'm not sure where to put The Air Americans and Clout here but both belong at the bottom of any list.

Didn't Richard Greene play Robin Hood in a show produced by a communist activist and written by black-listed Hollywood writers?

Anonymous said...

More like The Young Turks leave AAR because they're (AAR) a bunch of asstards!!!

Anonymous said...

TYT is in good company. AAR also dropped Morning Sedition, The Majority Report, The Sam Seder Show (absolutely no excuse for that, considering the replacement), and the award winning Mike Malloy Show. I hardly recognize the network any more. When it started, it k'd a.

Anonymous said...

They need to give Maron a call.

Anonymous said...

Bring back Morning Sedition, PLEASE!

Anonymous said...

It's a push.
The young turks stink and they're leaving a network that stinks.

It's a pitty, but that's how I see it. Rachel Maddow is the only voice on AA worth hearing. Sadly, the way AA is going, she won't have a platform much longer.

bits barnes said...

bring back sam seder

Anonymous said...

I agree with those who say that every change that AA makes in the morning slot is worse than it was in the first place.

It takes a while for radio shows to get traction, and AA never waits long enough.

After TYT leave, there isn't a voice on AA that I HAVE to catch.

bits barnes said...

randi rhodes when she's not congratulating herself is worth listening to - very fact drive. tom hartman is always worth listening to. sam seder funny, fact driven, and much can be learned from listening to him argue with opposing positions. he draws the caller in, then goes in for the kill. excellent. lionel is the worst thing that happened to air america. unlistenable. ed schultz - self promoter - unlistenable. rachel madow - gentle genius. proof is her new tv exposure - keith obherman and lou dobbs. if you don't appreciate randi, sam, rachel, tom, robert kennedy junior, maybe you just don'st like progressive radio.

bits barnes said...

lionel is the worst thing that ever happened to air america

Anonymous said...

I love TYT and I'll miss it. Hopefully I'll still be able to stream online.

Having said that, I'd love Marc Maron and Sam Seeder to do a show together.

bits barnes said...

sam seder without "katherine harris" would be a great replacement.

Anonymous said...

I think Cenk was great. He made politics fun. His insight was always interesting. I think AAR made a big mistake.

Anonymous said...

Bring back Sam Seder! The Turks were ok when it was Cenk AND Ben, but when Ben left, Cenk was too much.

Lionel just plain sucks; as much as I hated Stephanie Miller (who, like Schultz, is NOT part of AAR,) Lionel is so bad that I welcomed my local station replacing him with Miller.

As much as I like AAR (and Rachel is simply fabulous, Hartmann is very good, and Randi is good if you're in the mood), if Mark Green's notion of a good and successful radio line-up includes Richard Green (rather than David Bender, Bobby Kennedy, jr., and Papantonio) AND includes Lionel, then his IS consigning AAR to the dustbin of history.


bits barnes said...

bill press is totally boring and monotone... he is as bad on the radio as he is on television.. air america might as well go off the air... rachel maddow is the only daytime person worth listening to. after the 3 way debate, hillary, obama and edwards, randi rhodes might as well join fox... all she did was bash the democrats.. kucinich is not going to be president.. she has to get over it and start building up the three who have a chance to be president rather than giving the republicans more fuel to destroy the democrats.

Anonymous said...

I am happy I don't have to listen to the Young Turks again in the morning. When TYT were three, the show was entertaining and informative.
Cenk is too arrogant and has a superiority complex.

Welcome Bill Press!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Morning Sedition pleeeaaassssseeeee!
Just tell me it was a bad nightmare and Mark Maron never really left the air and Sam seder comes back.

Anonymous said...

What in the world is wrong with AAR? R they just plain STUPID??? Right when I got addicted to waking up at 3 in the morning and reaching in the dark to turn on my radio to connect political thought rages with Cenk they kill him off again JUST like they did with my most beloved Morning Sedition. It's sooo true that each replacement either gets worse or gets replaced when it really starts to hit the nail on the head. Every stinkin morning on my way to work I'd laugh my ass off at that 'best radio 2-fr' Mark & Marc. After I'd regain my composure I'd literally say out loud--- THEY BETTER NEVER TAKE THESE GUYS OFF THE AIR!! So please please please make it up to me and get the old gang back together again to save your assss, AAR. Oh ya, last time Marc Marin subed for Rachael, I laughed so uncontrollably, in my car, by myself, in the pouring rain, that I MISSED MY EXIT, took me an extra hr., to get home, but it was worth it, more time to get the full Marin. ps I sleep straight through Bill Press.... big mistake

Anonymous said...

First of all, dumping Sedar caught me totally by surprise .. I though "somebody special must be coming for them to ditch Seadr". I was wrong. Lionel is the absolute LAMEST thing on AAR. Put him on a court TV comedy show, but he's a waste of time slot on AAR. I liked Ben and Cenk on TYT (never thought Jill added anything) and I still put TYT in my top 3 when it was just Cenk. I like Randi (more now than originally) & Rachel ... and my favorite thing on AAR is Ring of Fire. I podcast that every week.

Anonymous said...

Lionel is even worse than unlistenable if that is possible. He sounds like a babbling cretin ibicile reading a Thesaurus with an asshat on.

Anonymous said...

Bill Press is terrible. How can someone that boring and unprepared have a job in radio?

Anonymous said...

What a poorly researched blog followed by equally ignorant comments. Air America was holding TYT back. Cenk is passionate and happy to be free of his restraints. He likes to swear and say controversial, non-"leebral" type things. He's not like Randi Rhodes, who freaks out when someone criticizes Democrats even though they're acting like Republicans. I listen to TYT EVERY day and I NEVER get bored of it. TYT is the only reason I have ever listed to Air America, and now that Cenk's gone, I won't listen anymore. All the other shows are boring or annoying, especially Randi Rhodes. I can't even bear to listen to her take callers because she's sooooo rude to them; but I guess it's tough for her ALWAYS being right and being surrounded by idiots. I think Thom Hartmann is very smart and has great insight, but his show isn't that entertaining and there are WAY too many commercials. The new TYT Internet show has no commercials. It's funded by members so it's not accountable to advertisers. Cenk, et al. can say whatever they want and I think that's AWESOME!

Anonymous said...

air america has become unlistenable. everyone but tom hartmann is in the tank for barack obama and the hillary supporters dont count. there is no fairness about obamas record and how he got where he is... the only negatives are about hillary. a left wing radio station should be supporting both of them and attacking the right wing. instead most of the air time is spent attacking hillary. we, and others like us, no longer listen to air america. ed schultz is the worst. he's a blowhard and his self interest is nauseating. sam seder, who i at one time supported, can go off the air for all i care. he, too, is in the tank for obama. if hillary should get the nomination what are randy, sam, ed, rachel and the rest of the left wingers going to do.. back track and say they were for hillary all along... goodbye air america..... goodbye, ba bye, ba bye

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David said...

good post thnks for sharing

Unknown said...

This goes to show how absolutely stupid racist republicans are: Look at the third Anonymous in the list who asks why not put Mark Levine on. First, he can't even spell his name. The assfuck's name is Mark Levin. No "e" idiot. And second, Mark Levin is a racist republican!! What the hell would he be doing on a Progressive station??? YOU ARE AS DUMB AS DISHWATER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Unknown said...

Here's another stupid comment:

"air america has become unlistenable. everyone but tom hartmann is in the tank for barack obama"

um...Limbaugh as 20 million. Ya' think there's a lot of people in the tank for him as he spews racist hatred?? All people who listen to Limbaugh drink the Limbaugh lemonade and are Limbaugh Lemonade Lemmings!

davidbieber80 said...

The Young Turks never got much traction, despite the fact that there is not much competition in the early morning time period on liberal talk radio stations. Only 16 of the 50 plus stations that carry four or more AAR hosts picked up the Turks. The Turks also held the 6-9 AM slot on XM’s Air America Channel.
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Unknown said...

if they are that talented then they will get what they deserves. maybe its better for them to leave air america

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