The "Voice of Reason" is coming back.
Tom Barberi will return to KALL radio (AM-700) with his own two-hour show, weekdays 5-7 a.m. starting Monday.
"I am happy to report that the reports of my demise and that of KALL Radio have been a bit premature," Barberi stated in an e-mail. "... To say that I am rested and ready would be an understatement. The lack of local talk radio has just been given a shot, or if the Legislature passes new liquor legislation, a shot-and-a-half in the arm.
"I hope to welcome many old friends and advertisers and a whole bunch of new listeners who have not had a place to go to get some divergent opinions and a place to feel comfortable to express themselves.
"One of the things that I missed most not doing my show was giving listeners a voice different than the constant drumbeat from the far right and a place to have their voices heard. What we have, mostly due to the culture of big corporate radio today, is a small group of syndicated talkers who really don't relate to the listeners where they live. I live for the cheap laugh, and we have much to laugh about ..."
Barberi has been off the air about 18 months. He last did a radio show on KFMS (FM-97.9) from September 2005 to September 2006.
He left KALL radio in October 2004, after an almost 33-year career there, when his contract was not renewed.
Barberi is one of the greatest polarizers the Salt Lake radio market has ever had. Listeners either love or hate him. There's little in between.
Whether you agree with Barberi or not, he has a true love for the medium. His return also signals more interest in live, local talk radio and that alone is a plus even for those who don't like Barberi's radio style.
Barberi is nationally known for his talk show talents. Talkers Talk magazine named him one of the "100 Most Important Radio Talk Show Hosts in America" twice.
He's also been inducted into the Utah Broadcasters Hall of Fame.
Barberi's show will replace some Fox Network sports programming.
• CLARIFICATION Last week the "Horse Talk" show was mentioned as only being available through the Internet. The show actually airs live each Saturday, from 10-11 a.m. on FM-88.1/91.9 (despite the fact KPCW's own program log erroneously doesn't include the show). You can probably only hear it in Park City area over the airwaves, because its signal doesn't reach most of the Salt Lake Valley.
"Horse Talk" remains a popular live show in Park City. Those who can't hear the show on the radio can listen anytime through a link at www.kpcw.org.
• RADIO HAPPENINGS KENZ ("The End," FM-101.9) will be playing its one millionth song sometime between now and Memorial Day. Listeners can guess what time and day the song will play. The listener who guesses the closest will win a car from Legacy Mazda. For more details, go to www.1019theend.com.
"Fisher and Candace," the new 5:30-9 a.m. weekday show on KOSY (FM-106.5), will celebrate leap year's Feb. 29 today with free pancakes to the public, from 9-10 a.m., at the West Valley IHOP, 3383 Decker Lake Drive.
This Fisher is indeed Scott Fisher, a longtime Utah radio veteran who used to be on KISN and other stations.
KUDD ("The Mix" FM-107.9) is giving listeners the opportunity to have a guitar signed by Matchbox 20 when their "Exile in America" tour comes to the E Center on Thursday. Listeners will have the chance to win tickets Feb. 29 when the station broadcasts live from The Skybar private club, 9-11 p.m. Radio Disney (AM-910) will offer a chance to see a showcase of props from Disney's "High School Musical 2" at A Disney Backstage Magic Party on Saturday, 1-3 p.m., at Summerhays Music., 5450 South Green St. A sweepstakes drawing for an original "High School Musical 2" prop will be held. "Taja" will also perform and sign autographs. For more information, go to RadioDisney.com/SaltLakeCity
Deseret Morning News radio editor Lynn Arave can be reached by e-mail at [email protected], or by phone at 237-2168.
E-mail: [email protected]