On Friday, the iconic New York station, on the air since 1971, goes silent for good. Love. The station — heard on 95.5 across the tri-state area — will sign off on Friday evening, but the farewell party begins even earlier. If you think the caller is being a little zany and over the top, odds are you’re getting pranked by award-winning radio broadcaster and former WWE announcer Todd Pettengill. Eileen Moliere of Teaneck, New Jersey, had that kind of PLJ experience. "It's not really time for me to reminisce," he said, "but with our final show we'll take calls and let people have their say.". But I had a hell of a ride. At noon a once-familiar sound hit the air, as show openers and sweepers from “Shannon in the Morning” were played. There were often many times when I just wanted to go in my office and close the door and shed a tear because it was so powerful and it was all due to you all in this room and the people that made time to come back here and pay tribute to this radio station.”, WPLJ will sign off Friday, May 31 at 7pm with the full staff on air for their regular shifts with Taylor saying the door will be open for more station alumni as they end an era in New York City radio. “I think we have done it right. Rush Limbaugh: The President Praises, Michael Savage Attacks. Copyright 2020 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. It was our mission when we found out back in February that this was going to happen. While WPLJ made history by staying off the air for Yoko, Pettengill chose to remember the station's response to another dark New York day, 9/11, when he and his previous morning co-host, Scott Shannon (now on WCBS FM), stayed on the air for 16 hours, well past their usual sign-off, taking calls from anxious listeners. “I feel like the prodigal son coming back home for a little while,” Shannon said as he opened his segment. Fink, the WPLJ veteran who is now on the air at Westchester's WXPK "The Peak" 107.1 FM, said he and some of the station's former disc jockeys will be on hand Thursday to talk about the old times, back on the WPLJ air one last time. “That was an incredible time for radio in New York, there was that battle going on between ‘NEW and ‘PLJ.” Shannon arrived in the market in 1983, launching “Z100” WHTZ and going from “worst to first,” which many believe led to the demise of the rock-formatted WPLJ. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. "Yoko requested 15 minutes of silence, and we actually went silent for 15 minutes," Fink said. During his hour, Shannon welcomed former WPLJ president & GM Mitch Dolan and ex-PD Tom Cuddy to the studio, the two responsible for bringing Shannon aboard and ushering in a new era for the station. “It was at midnight and Linda Energy was the last person to broadcast from the studios at 1313 Avenue of the Americas and at 12 midnight we signed these studios on and the first song was ‘You’ve Got To Fight For Your Right (to Party)” by the Beastie Boys.”. That. “It’s the first pre-set. (The song of the day was "All I Need," by Jack Wagner. On January 5, 2015, The Todd Show was re-branded to Todd & Jayde in the Morning, with Jayde Donovan joining Pettengill as a co-host. On February 7, 2014, Scott Shannon announced his retirement from WPLJ after 22 years. Pettengill said he is still under contract and won't make any decisions about his next chapter for a while. Lee told the story of Scott Shannon deciding on her on-air name, telling her that, “Monkey Boy says it sounds more Hollywood.” Marc Coppola joined the segment, noting he was the “last rock jock hired and the first one fired.”. “I called to make a request and got connected to the vice president of ABC and he said ‘Why don’t you come down and make a tape,’ and he put me on the air the following Saturday.” Fink worked at the station for eight years as a fill-in part time host, “but there was so much turnover that my fill-in part-time job was almost full time,” he continued. After less than 3 years — working full time, raising two kids under 10 and going to school — she earned her associate's degree. "I signed up for classes at Bergen Community College in January. ", Weather: We're getting extreme weather, but Hollywood got there first, Closing: Urban Coalhouse restaurant at Paramus Park mall has closed, News: 235 migrants who crossed Mexico border transferred to NJ and NY this month, Wrote MaryAnn Masley-Bassett: "I feel like I've been broken up with. Taylor, Kramer and company reminisced about when each of them joined the station and some of the highlights from their time there. Fink said this switch is bigger than the move away from classic rock in 1983, which prompted his departure from WPLJ. I’ve recruited other drivers to listen to it. Patty Steele Reportedly Leaving WPLJ. "I've read every comment, and it's humbling," Pettengill said. I’ve been listening to them steady for 28 years,” said Spiridigliozzi, who said she listened to PLJ for the hosts, particularly for morning host Pettengill. I mean you've become family, and it's one of those things that's pretty rare in radio now.". On Friday, the current roster of deejays will wind the station down, including Todd Pettengill, Jayde Donovan and Race Taylor. ", Remembering the heyday of WPLJ: Tape decks, 'album-oriented rock' and 'cross talk', The best music: 100 of the best songs in history, WPLJ says goodbye: Former 95.5 DJ Jimmy Fink's picks for a proper send-off, "It should be a thank you," he said. But she's grateful for what the station gave her and will never forget it. Positive COVID Test Silences ‘Joe Rogan Experience.’. Friday's final "Todd and Jayde" show will turn the mic over to listeners, Pettengill said. “Every bus I get into, I program it to 95.5,” said the New City resident. Shannon mentioned the names of those that came before him, including Tony Pigg, Jim Kerr and Carol Miller. "That's still the defining moment in my career," Pettengill said. Co-host Todd Pettengill immediately took control of the morning show, which re-branded as The Todd Show on February 24. "I still remember like it was yesterday when they said: 'We're evacuating 2 Penn Plaza [the station's home],' and we all looked at each other and said we're going to stay, because we thought we owed it to the audience to be there.". "I'll be there and I know Jim Kerr and Shelli Sonstein and Carol Miller will be there," Fink said. I never worked with anyone funnier than him in my entire career.”, Pettengill then joined Shannon and traded stories about promotions gone wrong and bits they did over the years, including Pettengill’s “phone scams,” playing back one of the most requested scams of all time the “Book Crook Phone Scam.”. He's starting a subscriber-based Internet comedy show starting next month. Coming out of the strains of Backstreet Boys “Everybody (Backstreet’s Back),” current ‘PLJ afternoon host Race Taylor, joined by Joey Kramer, began the tribute at 9am. Taylor and Kramer wrapped up the day-long tribute with calls from Domino, who spoke of the “guerilla radio” days, which may have included him spray painting rival station vans with a domino. After nearly 50 years on the air, New York radio institution WPLJ is not going away quietly. WPLJ has been broadcasting in New York since 1971 as a pioneer of the album-oriented rock (AOR) format. "WPLJ has been a part of my mornings for the last 20 years and I feel like I'm losing a limb," wrote Randi Shaffer. She has been to the PLJ studios for the “weekend blastoff,” and to Point Pleasant for the “summer blastoff,” where her brother’s band once played. “He was working at the station on February 14, 1971 when WPLJ was born.” Fink then filled listeners in on how he got his job at the radio station. In 1983, the station became transitioned to playing pop music, anchored by its popular "Scott and Todd in the Morning" radio show with Shannon and Pettengill. "Jim Kerr played my recording for like three or four days in a row, until the next crazier person came along.". (White Port and Lemon Juice)” and the early AOR days of the station. Speaking of his longtime co-host Todd Pettengill, Shannon said, “He was a major part of the show and we were like brothers for a long time. A clip of Lionel Richie playing keyboards under a traffic report from O’Rourke from back in the day was played. As for how things will end on WPLJ, before the silence, Pettengill said: "I think I'm going to be allowed to record something and have it be the last thing that's played. Just thank you for your loyalty and for listening all these years and for being a huge part of my life and everybody who works there. Objections Are A Regular Part Of Ad Sales. It’s a little bit of a shock,” he said. WPLJ fan Wendy Spiridigliozzi has no idea what she’ll do on Monday when she gets behind the wheel of her Clarkstown, New York, school bus and switches the radio on. They were not leaving the air. “You know I got the willies when I heard that Cumulus ID… I know it’s a nice company now but I got the willies on that one.” Shannon was famously dismissed by Cumulus in 2016 and then picked up by CBS Radio to anchor mornings on classic hits WCBS-FM. By continuing to use our services, you accept our new privacy policy and terms of use. The Radio Hall Of Famer joined WPLJ in 1991 as PD and morning man. “I’m probably the only person who worked against them [WPLJ] and then worked here and then didn’t work here,” Shannon said. Longtime WPLJ host Todd Pettengill is coming back, but not to radio. It was so powerful.". Love to all.". Speaking of his longtime co-host Todd Pettengill, Shannon said, “He was a major part of the show and we were like brothers for a long time. “The history of this radio station is incredible. Now 59, she's a nurse at Integrity House in Newark, where she works with those battling addiction. Acknowledging the sale and imminent flip represent the business side, Steele added, “it is heartbreaking from an artistic standpoint.”. In 1983, the station became more focused on pop music as well as its popular "Scott and Todd in the Morning" radio show with which aired from 1991 until 2014. You are all the best! Kerr then spoke of Fink, who was there from the beginning. Listened to Todd since he started as I had just moved to NJ. "To have people say 'I remember when you announced that your second daughter was being born. It was just something that came to me after I won the money and thought that it would be a great thing.". It’s a far cry from "Todd & Jayde," with its popular “Blown Off” segments, in which couples recall recent dates that one side is convinced went well while the other sees as a disaster not to be repeated. “It’s been a blessing and you guys made me proud today to be a part of this,” he said to the crowd gathered in the studio. During the WPLJ Farewell Reunion special with Scott Shannon, Patty Steele, Joe Nolan, and Brad Blanks, Todd Pettengill makes light of being fired from WPLJ. Man,” said Spiridigliozzi, who is no casual listener. Following Shannon at 1pm was AJ Hammer and Fast Jimmy Roberts, who also reminisced on their time there and were later joined by Broadway Bill Lee. We're getting extreme weather, but Hollywood got there first, Urban Coalhouse restaurant at Paramus Park mall has closed, 235 migrants who crossed Mexico border transferred to NJ and NY this month, Tape decks, 'album-oriented rock' and 'cross talk', Former 95.5 DJ Jimmy Fink's picks for a proper send-off, Your California Privacy Rights/Privacy Policy. Dave Stewart and Christine Ricci joined Taylor and Kramer for the following hour with a visit from JJ Kennedy and a call-in from Bobby Valentine and “Brucer the Producer.” WPLJ’s longest running disc jockey, Bill Ayres spoke of his illustrious past hosting his Sunday night talk show and the beginnings of World Hunger Year, which he co-founded and serves as Executive Director.

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