Superfans and Wack Packers alike had something to celebrate on Tuesday morning with the news that Howard Stern would return to SiriusXM's airwaves in 2016.
Howard's decision came down to the wire, once again, but he announced that a new contract was signed this week in a deal that will keep the Howard Stern Show on satellite radio through at least 2020.
"This morning I am very, very pleased to announce -- and excited to announce -- that in fact we will be here for the next five years," he told his audience.
Howard also teased some details of what's to come. "Now let me tell you why I'm excited about this. This deal that I have with Sirius … enables us now to move really into the future – not only to continue to bring you radio for the next five years, but there's an excitement about an app we'll be developing that will now include video streaming of the show!"
Howard confirmed that the show will continue to air beginning at 7 a.m. ET as well.
"We look forward to working with Howard to offer the Howard Stern experience through new platforms," SiriusXM CEO Jim Meyer said. "In 2006, when Howard launched his two uncensored satellite radio channels – Howard 100 and Howard 101 – he transformed how people listen to radio. We are thrilled that Howard is staying and expanding his relationship with SiriusXM to include video."
"As a broadcaster, it does not get better than working at SiriusXM and I'm truly excited for the future with this great company," Howard added. "I happen to think that its best days are ahead. So, if you are not listening to SiriusXM and The Howard Stern Show, then you are really more like a zombie, a rotting corpse monster, living half a life, deadened and blackened inside. It's as if you were still watching black and white television while shopping in actual stores on your way to the post office to fax a memo."
For months, avid listeners of Stern have waited and wondered whether or not the King of All Media would re-up at SiriusXM, find a new home for his beloved show, or retire from radio altogether. Stern cited his hectic schedule earlier this summer for why he decided to leave "America's Got Talent" after serving four seasons as a judge on the NBC reality series.
"The good people here at Sirius like me very much and they would like me to do the show some more," he said in June while announcing his departure from "AGT."
Stern initially signed with Sirius in 2004 (before the company merged with XM in 2008) and his show began broadcasting on satellite radio in January 2006. While on traditional terrestrial radio, the Howard Stern Show became the #1 morning program in several markets around the country. After Howard's move to Sirius, the company's subscriptions jumped from less than 500,000 to nearly 20 million by 2009. The company's subscriber numbers have continued to climb with Stern at the mic, with current subscription figures at just shy of 30 million.
In 2010, Howard forged a new five-year deal with SiriusXM, calling the new contract his "final five years in radio." With that contract set to expire at the end of the year, it would appear Howard has (thankfully) had a change of heart. Now, he plans to add yet another chapter to his already impressive legacy.
Robin Quivers, who broke into tears in the wake Howard's announcement, told him: "This was a tough five years for me and I'm so happy to be able to have another five years with you. And that's what I keep thinking about … that almost didn't happen."
Five more years of Howard on the air. If you listen carefully, you can hear Mariann from Brooklyn screaming with delight.