Harry Shearer 04.16.13

Special Message Regarding Le Show

Some relationships endure; some end.  I’ve just finished celebrating the 20th anniversary of my wedding to Judith Owen.  We’re staying together.

On the other hand, Le Show is leaving KCRW Radio.  Not of my volition.

On Monday, April 15, I had an Income Tax Day to remember.  I was invited to hear a “proposal” from the general manager of KCRW.  The proposal was, in fact, a notice of a fait accompli.  Le Show was being cancelled from the airwaves–something I had suspected might be the nature of the proposal, but the surprise was the timing: “effective immediately”.  Thus does public radio, in one more small way, come to resemble ever more closely commercial radio’s way of doing business.

In fairness, KCRW gave me a weekly hour for nearly 30 years, and our deal was simple: they got my program for free, and they left me completely alone.  That deal is over.

Le Show will continue to air on the many wonderful affiliated radio stations around the country, and on our outlets overseas.  It will continue as a podcast, as well.  And I’m in the process of seeking an alternative broadcast outlet in Los Angeles.

I’m not saying I haven’t thought about ending the series.  I think about it every week as I contemplate another Saturday with no idea yet of what I’ll do on Sunday.  But, nearly halfway through the 30th year of the broadcast, I know there’s much more to say, and, sadly, much more information that isn’t being shared with the audience anywhere else on the dial.

Le Show was not the only victim of management’s ax last weekend.  But Tom Schnabel, the architect of the station’s longtime “eclectic” music format, was allowed to say goodbye on air.  I was not, because, management said, I have “a national platform”.  I guess this is it.

This, or my nightly show on….Sorry, I went dreamy for a minute there.

If any of this pisses you off, aside from my staying married to Judith, you might want to let KCRW know.  If you couldn’t care less, congratulations on your equanimity.

This may, for a while, affect the Le Show archives.  So listen while you can.

Thanks for listening to Le Show.