NEIL ROGERS SIDEKICK GETS BOOT
Miami Herald, The (FL) – Wednesday, December 6, 1989
Author: JUAN CARLOS COTO Herald Entertainment Writer
There will be a cackle missing from The Neil Rogers Show today.
Glen “The Bird” Hill, Rogers’ sidekick on the WIOD (610 AM) midday program, has been removed from the show in a joint decision by station management and Rogers.
Hill, with his trademark chuckle, was Rogers’ foil and a part-time laugh track on three South Florida stations for 2 1/2 years, during which Rogers’ show was consistently the most- listened-to talk program in the area.
Hill, 41, said Tuesday the move was “the biggest shock of my life. Neil and I were a team. I thought I would be doing this for the rest of my days.”
But they were no longer a team, Rogers said. “I don’t think that the chemistry was the same,” said the acerbic host. “His role on the show in his mind had changed to the point where he thought it was a two-man show, and it’s not. It’s not going to be. I don’t think those things work out.”
Rogers and Hill said they had had no falling-out.
Hill had no contract with WIOD, only a letter of agreement stipulating his salary. The station canceled that agreement Tuesday, but said Hill would remain with WIOD through the end of the year.
WIOD General manager Mike Disney said Hill is a candidate for a weekend show, or the 2-to-6 afternoon drive slot, left open when Steve Kane moved to a New York radio station in October. Disney said the station is not set on keeping Stan Major, the current fill-in for Kane, and is considering hosts from around the country in addition to Hill.
WIOD and Zeta 4 (WZTA 94.9 FM), fined in October for airing material the Federal Communications Commission deemed indecent, have announced their reactions to the penalties. The material was broadcast during shows hosted by Rogers on both stations.
WIOD, fined $10,000 for airing four joke songs and a fake commercial, will pay. General manager Disney said “business sense took over”; legal fees to contest the penalties would be too expensive for the station.
Zeta 4, hit with $2,000 for airing one of the same songs, opposes the decision and filed a response with the FCC last week.
Zeta 4 general manager Tim Williams said the FCC fines were unnecessary and inappropriate, because the station’s management removed the material from the air on its own. In addition, Rogers was released from his contract in November 1988 over content disputes.
“We demonstrated to them that we had already acted in a responsible fashion,” Williams said.
Record Number: 8903260395
Copyright (c) 1989 The Miami Herald