Robservations on the media beat:
During the six months she was absent from “The Eric and Kathy Show” last year, Kathy Hart says she underwent treatment for headaches, dizziness and “some other unpleasantries that I won’t share.” In the first of three guest-hosting appearances on Tribune Broadcasting news/talk WGN 720-AM, Hart disclosed that she had been suffering from Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (CIRS) caused by water-damage mold. “So basically what I had to do was detox my body from all of these symptoms,” she said. But Hart continued to stonewall when WGN weekend host Frank Fontana asked why she walked out of Hubbard Radio hot adult-contemporary WTMX 101.9-FM after 21 years as morning co-host with Eric Ferguson. “It’s none of your business,” she said. “It’s really difficult to answer that. It certainly was an unorthodox way to leave a show. Usually I’m not a woman of mystery, but I have to say that it was kind of fun having the little bit of mystery out there.” When a caller asked whether anything at The Mix contributed to her leaving, Hart said: “Well, there’s a loaded question,” adding: “They were very respectful of what was going on with me — the personal leave that I took at the time — they were very, very respectful for all that. Because I didn’t even know what was going on with me at that time. So, yeah, it was a crazy, crazy time. When you think about how a show is going to end, never in my dreams — anybody’s wildest dreams — saw it coming the way that it did.” You can hear Fontana and Hart together from 1 to 3 p.m. today on WGN.
Now that “Chicago’s Very Own” WGN-Channel 9 and WGN 720-AM dodged a bullet from Sinclair Broadcast Group, another politically connected group may be seeking to buy parent company Tribune Media. Hicks Equity Partners and Cerberus Capital are teaming up to bid for the Chicago-based owner of WGN and 41 other TV stations around the country, according to the New York Post. Tom Hicks Jr. also is chairman America First, a super PAC closely aligned with President Donald Trump. If the name rings a bell, the Hicks family once owned Chancellor Media, a forerunner of iHeartMedia and onetime operator of nine radio stations in Chicago.
NBC Sports Chicago has announced the launch of “MyTeams by NBC Sports,” a new app incorporating all of the network’s Blackhawks, Bulls, Cubs, White Sox and Bears content, including live in-game streaming. Billed as the first of its kind, the “team-focused” mobile app offers customizable, all-in-one access to complete coverage of Chicago’s pro teams, along with those from the 10 other NBC Sports regional networks around the country. Fans can download “MyTeams” for free on iOS and Android devices in the Apple App Store and Google Play Store.
Malika Andrews, a former sports reporter for the Chicago Tribune and the New York Times, has been hired as a reporter for ESPN.com and sports/talk WMVP 1000-AM. As an NBA reporter based in Chicago, she’ll cover the Bulls, Bucks and Timberwolves. Andrews succeeds Nick Friedell, who’s been ESPN Chicago’s NBA reporter for almost 10 years. Friedell is heading west to cover the Golden State Warriors for ESPN on all platforms.
Tuesday’s comment of the day: Mike Braden: So WLS says its “WOMP! WOMP! Sears files for bankruptcy…” post was misinterpreted??? No, it didn’t need interpreting to begin with. It was as clear as could be. What a ridiculous statement trying to excuse a moronic post.