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Is Jonathon “Johnny B” Brandmeier Best Fit As New Morning Man On WGN Radio?

December 2, 2011

There is good news to report from the Chicago radio market as WGN tosses out morning man Greg Jarrett, who I have commented about as being at his best when the radio volume is turned way down.  I could not abide Jarrett behind the microphone.

Taking over morning drive-time on WGN will be the famous man, “Johnny B”, who has made radio important to so many listeners over the years.

Greg Jarrett is out and Jonathon Brandmeier is in as morning man at WGN-AM 720.  The announcement Friday ends Jarrett’s run at the Tribune Co.-owned station after two years. It also marks the return of “Johnny B,” longtime morning man at “The Loop” WLUP-FM 97.9, after two years on the radio sidelines.

“Jonathon Brandmeier is a Chicago superstar and we’re thrilled to have him on the air, at the station where he belongs,” said Tom Langmyer, WGN Radio’s vice president and general manager.

“Johnny’s high-energy humor and unique Chicago experience make him an exceptional fit as ‘The Voice of Chicago’ evolves with another generation of listeners,” he added.

While I am delighted that the pompous Jarrett is off the air in Chicago after only two years, (and they were long ones for listeners) I am not sure how  Jonathon Brandmeier will fit into the WGN mold

In January 2010 I offered a quick comment that echoes my concerns now.

From his start behind the microphone in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin to his wild ride on the famed “The Loop” in the Windy City, Brandmeier has been one of the voices that makes for ratings and plenty of  laughs. (Not all the laughs are ‘high-toned’, and therein lies the concern.)  Question is, will he fit in on a mature and seasoned talk station?

Like many radio listeners, both from Chicago and the whole midwest who have their dials set on WGN, I will be listening and waiting for the answer.  There is no way that WGN could have done worse than Greg Jarrett.

12 Comments
  1. Michael B permalink
    March 5, 2012 9:52 AM

    He offers absolutely nothing, I find it hard to believe he actually has followers. He’s not offensive, he’s just a ZERO. I cannot imagine why he was hired and on top of it, put in a prime slot. My preference would be listening to the pledge drive on NPR

  2. February 7, 2012 7:00 AM

    I am looking for another station to listen to in the morning….Johnnie B is not WGN quality. I have listened to WGN since I was a kid and my mother had it on……that’s a long time. And Johnny B doesn’t fit. How about Mike McConnal (sp).

  3. steve permalink
    January 30, 2012 3:03 PM

    Johnny b you are the best.

  4. qwerty permalink
    December 24, 2011 5:31 AM

    Hey please keep Leslie on in the mornings and put Mary in the afternoon, or send her packing along with poor Greg.

  5. Jeff permalink
    December 20, 2011 4:57 PM

    I am glad GJ is finally gone. That to way too long. As far as Johnny B, it seems and odd slot for his style of show. The pace is too fast and freewheeling for the morning, he would be better in another time slot, just not the afternoon drive, I wouldn’t want to miss Gerry M. They should put John Williams on in the morning slot again and give him a chance. Johnny would be great over the lunch time.

  6. Deb Parker Johnson permalink
    December 6, 2011 11:37 AM

    I will turn off WGN. Didnt like Johnny B on WLUP and I can’t imagine he will be much better now.

  7. Jimmy Hat permalink
    December 4, 2011 10:29 AM

    Re hashed bits from 80-90’s. Steve Dahl is only radio guy who adjusted to his age. Unfortunately it could not keep him popular. I wish Dahl would have been offered this gig. Right now Pete McNutty is the most creative on radio in between Akynyrd and Journey songs. That is the sad state of Radio.

  8. mlerc permalink
    December 3, 2011 7:08 PM

    OK, not what is WGN going to do to find a place for Steve Cochran?

  9. Gehrig Peterson permalink
    December 2, 2011 2:50 PM

    This is a great move for WGN and Brandmeier brings fun back to radio, it’s been too long!

  10. Lorin Winter McDonald permalink
    December 2, 2011 2:33 PM

    welcome back johnny b! ill be listening!

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