At The Philadelphia Business Journal, Jeff Blumenthal spoke with new WIP Brand Manager Rod Lakin, who recently replaced Spike Eskin. Spike went to New York to take over at WFAN after Mark Chernoff’s departure.
Blumenthal asked Lakin about Angelo Cataldi’s 2022 departure, and finding a replacement:
…what I always say is that nobody replaces Angelo. Angelo is a once in a lifetime type talent. He’s a one of a kind of personality that can never be replicated. Trying to replicate Angelo Cataldi is a failure strategy to begin with. So the job really is to create a product in the morning drive that can adhere to the standards that Angelo created. So that’s kind of job one. And in terms of looking around the [Philadelphia] market, I’m listening to a lot of different things. We have a great lineup at WIP with a lot of great internal people as well. So I’m just taking it all in. But to your question about the enormity of the responsibility? I don’t feel that. I feel like I have a responsibility to WIP to continue the great work that’s been done. And longterm, we have a long time to kind of build out this plan. And it’s an exciting opportunity for any programmer.
It’s certainly true that you cannot replicate Angelo Cataldi. You cannot find another person who will bullshit their way to the top via a phony acting job. He will go down in history as the only Yankees fan from Rhode Island to convince the lowest common denominator of Philadelphia sports fans that he speaks for them and represents them. Hopefully Angelo’s replacement will be a person who just wants to talk sports instead of some goofball who is “playing a character.”
Anyway, it’s a good interview, so check it out at the PBJ. The only thing Blumenthal didn’t ask about is caller-driven radio. Specifically, he should have asked why WIP allows the same people to call in EVERY SINGLE GOD DAMN DAY, at the exact same time. If I have to hear one more phone call from Chuck from Mt. Airy, or Mad Mike, or INGY, I’m gonna drive my truck off the side of route 309 and purposefully put myself in a ditch.
Hopefully, because Lakin is not a local guy, he has taken this new job and discovered how ridiculous local radio programming is. Hopefully he’s thinking “why do we program our entire station around callers, who add nothing to the show?” God willing, he puts the kibosh on that and makes some changes. Changes that make WIP great again. The non-Howard, non-Angelo talent is very good, and we just need to hear more from them and less from the dopey dope listeners.