Archive for the ‘Early Voices’ category

50 Years Since Barry Goldwater’s Nomination I: The Role of a Talk Radio Host in Making it Happen

July 16, 2014

This week marks the 50th anniversary of the Republican National Convention that nominated Barry Goldwater for president in San Francisco. Goldwater lost a crushing landslide in 1964, but his campaign of ideas helped shape the modern conservative movement.

Barry Goldwater (Senate.gov/artandhistory)

Barry Goldwater (Senate.gov/artandhistory)

The Right Frequency details how conservative talk radio host Clarence Manion helped make Goldwater a star years before he entered the presidential race.

From The Right Frequency:

In 1957, Senator Barry Goldwater got welcomed national exposure as a guest on the show. Clarnnce Manion talked Goldwater into writing a book that the he thought should be titled a “Conscience of a Conservative.” The book was ghost written by L. Brent Bozell II. But the publishing industry was not receptive, so Manion founded Victor Publishing Company, and the book launched Goldwater’s forward to the 1964 Republican presidential nomination and influenced the politics for generations.

“Clarence Manion was very important to the conservative movement. His weekly program was very well read and carried on many stations,” said Lee Edwards of the Heritage Foundation. “The transcripts of his broadcasts were then reproduced and distributed widely in the conservative movement. It was always regarded as a mark of your standing if you were a guest on the Manion Forum. He was a major player.”

To learn more about Manion and his influence on the conservative movement and Goldwater’s campaign, read The Right Frequency.

 

Why Alternative Media is Better than the Good Old Days

June 28, 2014

The rise of new media has produced too much “advocacy journalism” according to Larry Atkins a journalist and attorney.

Walter Cronkite (NASA.gov)

Walter Cronkite (NASA.gov)

From Huffington Post

Over the past 15 years, as newspaper circulation has declined, more and more people are turning to advocacy journalism via websites, talk radio, cable TV, and blogs to get their news. …

Advocacy journalists do not set out to inform; they set out to advance an agenda, whether it be conservative or liberal. While FOX News and conservative talk radio show hosts like Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity are the worst offenders, liberal television hosts like Al Sharpton and Rachel Maddow also fall into this category. They are all giving their opinion and reporting news with a goal and a biased agenda.

In light of the explosion of media outlets ranging from cable news outlets, talk radio, blogs, and websites, we need to be more savvy news consumers. As I tell my journalism students, it’s important to consider the source of the information before we make our judgments.

Atkins is both right and wrong.

Neither Rush Limbaugh nor Rachel Maddow are journalists, and have been known to omit facts to push their point of view.

However, Atkins longs for the good old days that never really existed, of The New York Times setting the agenda and Walter Cronkite telling America, “That’s the way it is.” Today we know that establishment media had their own agenda and framed debates in one way.

So the public should be more savvy news consumers and always consider the source of information. That’s always been the case. What’s better about today than Atkins’ mythical yesteryear is that an alternative media has produced multiple sources to check both politicians and media.

To learn more about how talk radio established a successful commercial model for the exploding alternative media universe of today, read The Right Frequency.

First Radio President

June 21, 2014

This week marks 92 years since Warren Harding became the first president to be heard on the radio. It was still a new medium and few new how potent it would become in defining American politics by the 1990s.

Warren G. Harding (Library of Congress)

Warren G. Harding (Library of Congress)

It was on June 14, 1922 when Harding addressed a crowd dedicating the memorial site for Francis Scott Key, the composer of the Star Spangled Banner, a fairly non-controversial event. It was nevertheless historical day for media in America.

Harding was also the first American president whose election was called on the radio, by KDKA in Pittsburgh, the first radio station in America to broadcast election returns.

From the History Channel:

Harding was an advocate for advanced technology. In 1923, he recorded a speech on an early “phonograph” that recorded and played back sound on wax discs. Harding was also the first president to own a radio and was the first to have one installed in the White House.

Harding’s Francis Scott Key memorial dedication was heard by 125,000. President Coolidge’s inaugural radio address reached 23 million via the radio. … It was not until three years later, however, that a president would deliver a radio-specific address. That honor went to President Calvin Coolidge.

To learn more about how presidents successfully used radio to shape public opinion, read The Right Frequency.

 

Top 10 Again! Right Frequency Climbs Amazon List

September 7, 2013

The Right Frequency on Friday hit the #6 spot on Amazon’s History & Criticism category.

The book was also #25 in the overall radio category.

This makes four consecutive months that The Right Frequency has been on an Amazon bestseller list.

Click here to order a copy of The Right Frequency.

 

 

One Year After Release, The Right Frequency a Bestselling Radio Book

September 1, 2013

One year after its release, The Right Frequency stands strong on Amazon.

The Right Frequency, released in August 2012, reached the Top 20 over the past week on Amazon’s Radio History & Criticism category for Kindle books. This book reached the top 10 on Friday, Aug. 30. The Right Frequency also returned to the bestseller list in Amazon’s Radio category.

The Right Frequency paperback edition also returned to the bestseller list for Amazon’s History & Criticism category.

The book, that chronicles the history of talk radio from the days of Walter Winchell through Rush Limbaugh, has been an Amazon bestseller for four consecutive months.

Click here to order a copy of The Right Frequency.

Boston Globe post on National Radio Day

August 20, 2013

The Right Frequency was featured on The Boston Globe’s website in a posting about National Radio Day, Aug. 20.

Of the day, the article said, “[O]ne trend that appears obvious is the shift to talk radio away from music radio due to the demand for music being satisfied by iPods, YouTube and a variety of electronic factors.”

“And when it comes to talk radio, one of the very few experts on the subject, Fred Lucas, author of ‘The Right Frequency,’ a history of the remarkable influence talk radio has had on Conservative politics in the United States, is well aware of the trend.”

“Radio is becoming more widely used than ever before,” Lucas said. “There are more portals through radio, and I mean talk radio, flows today than ever before. When one considers the portable electronic devices in use today, the numbers are staggering. Talk radio influence appears to be never ending.”

Click here to order a copy of The Right Frequency.

‘Radio Has the Best Pictures’

August 18, 2013

A post on One News Page discussed the upcoming National Radio Day and The Right Frequency.

“Radio communication was around since the 1800s in some form, but became a commercial force in the 1920s, when commentators such as H.V. Kaltenborn ruled the airwaves. The story of these early radio voices through the current talkers such as Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck is told in “The Right Frequency: The Story of the Talk Radio Giants Who Shook Up the Political and Media Establishment” by Fred Lucas (History Publishing Co.),” the post says. 
It continues, “National Public Radio enthusiastically declared in 2011, ‘That’s right – one day is set aside to celebrate radio. At NPR, we honor it every day, but we’re happy to have an excuse to pay it extra special attention.’ Seeking to answer the question, “Why would anyone want to celebrate radio in this digital age?” NPR asserted three points: 1.) “Radio is one of the nation’s most accessible forms of media.” 2.) In times of crisis, radio can be the only source for emergency information, and 3.) Quoting NPR correspondent Susan Stamberg, “Radio has the best pictures.”
The Right Frequency explains how radio talkers spanning two centuries from Walter Winchell, Bob Grant and Sean Hannity have painted the clearest pictures, rarely leaving ambiguity on the hot political and social issues of the day.”