Readers Respond!

So you do care after all. Extreme Radio 94.3's decision to add the mutterings of Mancow Muller to its morning line-up has actually gotten some response from the radio-listening public. Far be it from Zippy to not continue fanning the flames:

Knoxville sends me yet another swoon-inducing, hip-swiveling, and thoroughly addictive record by the V-Roys...meanwhile, I'm thoroughly embarrassed by the latest Chicago export to hit you guys. I'm sorry that a city full of great music, great authors, great food, great theater and just plain great fun is sending you the biggest load of shit we could shovel out of Lake Michigan. Mancow Muller and his morning madhouse dunces are a tumor on the face of Chicago radio, and I hate hearing that Knoxville has succumbed to the disease. Yuck. So Knoxvillians will now be able to hear interviews (in other words, promotional hype) with the likes of Lenny Kravitz, huh? Can't you watch Donny & Marie for that? Leave it to Shane Cox, the only man in town who could make Jonathan Pirkle look like a genius.
—Shelly Ridenour

[Yes, Shelly's the former Metro Pulse entertainment goddess—Z.]

I have an opinion on the Extreme Radio/Mancow debate.
First, the response from the reader was dead-on. WNFZ was a WILDLY popular station when it was 94Z and was programmed by Jonathan Pirkle. Since South Central Communications has taken it over they have run it into the ground! Shane Cox stated that "syndication is the wave of the future." That is total nonsense. Syndication is the wave of the late '70s-early '80s when the FCC "dropped in" many new small town FM radio stations (WNFZ was one of them). Syndication allowed the "mom and pop" operators the ability to pick up programming for barter of their network spots and run the stations with very little capital for staffing.
I just hope that in the future the operators of WNFZ will see that the wave of the future is to grant the Knoxville Metropolitan area a great radio station and bring back the winning formula of 94Z with the man who put Knoxville on the radio map, Jonathan Pirkle.
As for Mancow, he is one of the least-carried syndicated shows. If Shane Cox wants "a rock station to keep its listener(s)" and have a "major rock and roll morning show" maybe they should develop one from the local pool of talent and not take the easy way out and sign off on some overly inflated never-will-be like Mancow. Hell, this isn't Chicago.
Emmerson Fangio

[We were unable to verify the existence of Mr. Fangio. Pirkle himself or just some random radio lover? You be the judge—Z.]

I think the satellite feed of "Mancow's Morning Madness" is a welcome addition to Knoxville's morning drive-time listening options. I think Shane Cox, as Programming Director, has done a tremendous job of giving 94 Xtreme Rock a real competitive edge in the Knoxville radio market. And, no, I don't know Mr. Cox. It sure beats listening to DJ's that should be working for a 1-900 sex service; or talk incessantly, waxing philosophically about Jimi Hendrix's guitar solos (no offense Jimi!). Give the intelligent crap a rest! I want entertainment!
Long live Mancow! I give Shane, and the station, my personal thumbs up!
A Knoxville Radio Listener

I Love Pie!

Calling all thespians. The swingin' folk over at Actors Co-op are having their second annual Pie Social and Benefit, which helps to fund all of the groovy things that the Co-op does each season, like their most recent production with V-Roy Scott Miller, among other great Knoxville actors. The Social will take place at JFG Coffee House in the Old City, with free music by members of the Appalachian Music Exchange, free pies by Magpies, Inc., and free beer from the New Knoxville Brewing Company. Now y'all, don't just show up to soak up all of the gratis stuff. Please dig deep so we can keep the Co-op able to produce the witchcraft they weave so well.

Tool Time

The coolest spouses in local rock—Teri and Tony Lee—are back, with a revamped line-up of Girls With Tools. The band, relocated from Carbondale, Ill., played a handful of blistering Knoxville shows last year before going on hiatus. But guitarist Dennis Garrison says the long search for a new drummer finally ended with Atom Smasher (ex-Evil Twin), and the Girls are ready to rock again. And rock is what they do, with Teri's great big Patti Smith-ish vocals presiding over a post-punk juggernaut. The first show is set for the Longbranch on Nov. 13. Zippy says yowza.

A Human Rights Issue

As tempting as it is to close your eyes when faced with the news of Matthew Shepard's kidnapping, savage beating, and untimely death in Wyoming, resist. It's hard to not just give up in the face of such brutality (allegedly directed at Shepard because he was an openly gay man), whether you be gay, straight, or somewhere in between. While the calendar says it's 1998, there are some who still believe that violence is the only appropriate way to channel anger and that beating someone to death is perfectly acceptable. If you are stunned or outraged or firmly believe that everyone should have the right to personal safety, plan to attend a memorial service held by Positively Living Center on Tuesday, Oct. 27 at 8 p.m. The service will be followed by a panel discussion about hate crimes and members of the Knoxville Hate Crimes Working Group, the KPD, the FBI, and the Metropolitan Community Church will participate. The service will be held at St. Michael's Episcopal Church on the UT campus.

—Zippy "Social Conscience" McDuff