Tradional Radio Is Feeling the Heat and Chubby Checker Wants a Comeback

February 26, 2007
Photo: The Howard Stern Show

Howard brought up that Tim Sabean had been bothering him lately to get Chubby Checker on the show, which he guessed was because they knew each other from Tim’s days in Philadelphia. However, Tim came into the studio and reported he recently found himself with in a car with Chubby, and Chubby played a portion of a new album he was working on. This led Artie to wonder what kind of “enormous car” could fit both Tim and Chubby in it, while Howard asked Tim if the wheels on the car “exploded,” which Tim claimed didn’t happen.

Regular Radio Feels the Heat

SIRIUS CEO, Mel Karmazin stopped in as promised, and Howard started by bringing up his “brilliant business move” with the potential merger between SIRIUS and XM. Mel replied by saying he brought up the idea for the merger as soon as he started at SIRIUS two years ago, and felt the battle between SIRIUS and XM was “anti-consumer.” Mel went on to note he thought SIRIUS would be successful regardless of what happened with the merger, mentioning that SIRIUS had added 5.4 million subscribers compared to XM’s 5.2 million since Howard announce he was headed to SIRIUS, even though XM had 2.5 million subscribers while SIRIUS had just 600,000 back then.Mel then said the announcement of the merger wouldn’t have taken place if the people behind it weren’t confident that the government would approve it. Mel added he felt some of the complaints the government had been making about the potential merger proved just how big of a threat terrestrial radio felt satellite radio to be.

The Price Remains the Same

Photo: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Mel noted the subscription price for SIRIUS had remained the same at $12.95 throughout its existence, and believed that wasn’t likely to change if the merger took place.

Mel went on to say subscribers wouldn’t have to buy new radios if the merger went through either, and that they’d still be able to pick up programming that was originally exclusive to XM, and vice versa. Mel then noted the merger was designed with the consumer in mind, and that he was confident it would be approved because of all the “advantages” it would provide not only for the listeners, but also for the stores that sold satellite radios.

Predicting a Positive Result

Mel said “the boards of both companies” chose him to be the CEO of the new satellite company, but insisted he would’ve stepped aside had the deal been delayed over the title. Mel added that he was satisfied with his attempt to merge SIRIUS and XM, no matter what the end result was. Howard then asked Mel what he thought the odds were of the merger being approved, and he responded “better than 50 percent” – at least when it came to the FCC making its decision.

Name That Company

Photo: The Howard Stern Show

Dominic Barbara called in and said the FCC would need to come up with a “rational basis” if it struck down the merger, but that Mel would be able to appeal such a decision even if that happened. Mel replied that, although that was true, he felt it would be “too time consuming” to bring the matter to court, so the merger was a one-shot deal. As the discussion continued, Artie said he and his “camp” had one question: After the merger, would the vending machine on the thirty-sixth floor carry both Linden’s Butter Crunchers and chocolate chip cookies like the one on the thirty-seventh floor did – Mel promised it would. Another caller wanted to know what the new service would be called, but Mel said no decision had been made on the matter. Because of this, Howard played the following Wack Pack responses as to what the service should be renamed:

• Wendy the Retard said “Jessica” because “it’s a really cool name”• Blue Iris went with “Howard Stern” because she wanted to “suck his c*ck”• Riley Martin replied with “Sirium”• King of All Blacks thought “Surge” was the perfect choice• Jeff the Drunk responded, “I don’t have a f’in’ name and I don’t give a f’…