Slog - The Stranger's Blog

Line Out

The Music Blog

« May I Have This Lap Dance? | Conservative Attire »

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

I Love the Smell of Ranting in the Morning

Posted by on December 27 at 9:53 AM

This angry email, complete with malapropisms and misspellings, arrived in my in-box this morning. It concerns an interview I did recently with KEXP DJ John Richards about his controversial salary (a topic that is also generating some ranting in this KEXP thread in The Stranger forums).

Anyway, enjoy the bitterness…

From: britta sumy

Date: Tue, 27 Dec 2005 09:48:04 -0800 (PST)



So are you suggesting the sum of $120.000 was wrong? U fucking scab! you have lied your ass of to many times to count, you start this story like the SEATTLE WEEKLY messed up! WRONG! you are just a two bit hag! change your profession, try cock sucking!! like you did for DJ John….fuckin loser!!

CommentsRSS icon

So .. ah .. your corresponent is suggesting John Richard's salary is too high? Color me confused. Perhaps the malaprops and vulgarity confused me.

Better you than I.

I have no idea what my correspondent is suggesting, other than that I'm a "two bit hag." But I've just let "Britta Sumy" know that he/she is up on the Slog, so maybe he/she will post a clarification here.

But yes, a lot of people around town have been suggesting that John's $90K/yr salary is too high.

If you think 90 large is too much, stop listening/giving money to KEXP. I can't stand shoe-gazing self-important rock anyway, so I don't listen, but if people don't like John's payday, they need to stop whining like a bunch of sniveling Marxists.

Yeah, but that "ranting" in the forums stopped days ago. Some whackjob is keeping it going by creating new accounts (with names like "I pledged $500!") and posting every day. It's weird.

I can't honestly say that 90k per year is too high. I'd make that much (adjusted) if I moved to Seattle - it's probable that I provide less value to my employer than John Richard does to KEXP.

Whatever - guys that can keep servers running are a dime a dozen; DJs that people will listen to are not.

I really don't know why people are that upset; yes KEXP is having financial difficulty, yes they asked you for money, and you're working for tips in a diner. And?

It was a freely entered into transaction. You pay, you feel good about listening. If you pay good people under market wages they won't stick around and part of the reason you listen is gone. You don't like it stop donating.

Of course if KEXP has to change because people aren't paying up and you don't like those changes .... well change is life.

I think the point is that people are surprised that salaries are that high, and they aren't interested in giving money to pay star salaries.

the john-in-the-morning formula was pretty simple:

- rap music
+ pixies oldies

One of the most clever levers ever devised to exercise control of the arts is that silly old myth that your level of integrity is determined by your dedication to making no money.

No one has ever won the lottery and given the money back but when a guy who plays records for a living hits his stride and earns a comfortable salary, he's supposed to say "Thanks, but no thanks. I have a reputation I'm worried about". Riiiiiiiight. His salary negotiations are supposed to be mitigated by his conscience? Is that how he's supposed to think, Dearest Altruists?

John Richards apparently works hard, sticks to what he believes in regardless of detractors, conceivably even declines higher paying opportunities to that end and meanwhile wears numerous hats in the process of earning his well deserved salary. This guy is supposed to further shun the rewards of a job well done? He earns below industry standard for morning drive time DJ in a market this size, but he's supposed to make nothing, right? Would that make it better?

Being upset with KEXPs direction and management is one thing but this whole salary issue is a low blow.

There are obviously alot of agendas at play in this whole "Screw KEXP" thing.

From such petty things as the very popular "they're too hip, and that's not hip enough for me" sentiment and the "no way I'm donating any of my $18k a year salary so someone who looks and acts like me can make $90k" all the way on up to legitimate gripes like "I donated $1000 and they cancelled my polka hour!" type shit. The angles are abundant and have little if anything to do with what guys in his line of work make and where he fits in that bigger picture versus what he brings to the table at KEXP.

People are throwing up their hands like John Richards is Ken Fucking Lay. WTF?

Anyway, I'm happy for the guy.

So John should live in one of the crappy-ass old seattle condos or should he be able to actually afford a nice home for his family in the city that he contributes so much to?

I make less than half that and will still proudly contribute $100 a year.

While I wouldn't put it so ineloquently, I would say that the Richards interview pretty much fills the bill of a puff piece. It's somewhat forgivable, though, since the SW article (if I remember correctly) apparently didn't really talk to him at all.

one thing that i don't think has gotten much play in all of this is, really, just how formatted our "indie" station is. i'm lucky enough to have a job, where i can listen to music all day long, but unfortunately i don't have a cd player so i end up listening to kexp for most of the day. and i'm appalled at the number of times the same lame music comes up. the afternoon guy is ok, but john and cheryl have bad taste and they seem to play their poor choices on a loop. god if i never here devendra barnhart or jeff buckley again i'd be a happy man. they just seem really formatted. so much so that if you were to look at their play lists you'd find a lot of the smae shit, day in:day out.

gets pretty boring and doesn't seem worth all the money they recieve. at least to me.

i say fire them both. john and cheryl. let more volunteers come back! it certainly would make it more interesting....

"they just seem really formatted. so much so that if you were to look at their play lists you'd find a lot of the smae [sic] shit, day in:day out."

And there you've nailed why KEXP is successful; its programmers play the "smae shit" every day. That's what people want, even so-called "alternative rock" aficionados. They front like they want variety and edginess, but deep down they crave sonic comfort food, and KEXP is all too happy to serve it up to these faux hipsters. In this light, the station's smugness is annoying in the extreme.

I can't believe how many idiots think that KEXP is so great. Apparently they're so spellbound by the programming they haven't had a chance to find other music stations across this country (on-line of course). I can name 10 public radio stations that would kill KEXP in a heart beat. Just chalk it up to a bunch of Seattle idiots who live in a bubble and have probably never been out of this city. "KEXP this and KEXP that," blah, blah blah. It's like a friggin cult. Christ, what is wrong with the people here anyway?


Comments Closed

In order to combat spam, we are no longer accepting comments on this post (or any post more than 45 days old).