Good Food Hour Axed at KSRO

Saturday, November 17th, 2012

Garner and Ash in a photo from the KSRO website

SHOCKER! After 25 years, Good Food Hour radio program has been cancelled by KSRO.

It was one of several budgetary cuts made at the Santa Rosa radio station, owned by Maverick Media this week.

The long-running show featured Chef John Ash and Steve Garner as hosts each Saturday morning. Also eliminated: Garden Talk and KSRO Morning News Anchor Curtiss Kim. Garden Talk and The Good Food Hour were the longest running garden and food shows in California, according to KSRO.

This morning lines lit up with confused callers when Good Food Hour was replaced by a syndicated radio program. Insiders say that Ash and the others were informed late this week.  The KSRO website no longer lists the Good Food Hour or Garden Talk.

“We were totally shocked,” said Ash, reached Saturday. He stated that it was an especially tough blow for Garner, who worked on both shows for decades. “It’s a real loss of local broadcasting that was part of the local community.”

While the food community was taken aback at the unceremonious cancellation, its not without precedent. In 2010, Steve Jaxon’s “The Drive” was cancelled on KSRO but returned several weeks later with its own lineup of sponsors. In San Francisco, KGO cut Dining Around with Gene Burns (along with a number of other shows) in 2011.

Apparently the cuts at KSRO were made for purely budgetary reason, but BiteClub hopes that Good Food Hour might be able follow a similar model to Jaxon’s and possible reach a new audience through Podcasting and the Internet.

Because that kind of experience in our local food scene, along with Garner and Ash’s insight, humor and wit would be a pretty tragic loss to the community.

Can we find a way to bring Good Food Hour back? Let’s hope so.

Author: biteclub

Food Dining and Restaurants in Sonoma County and beyond, is Wine Country dining with Drive-Thru Sensibility.

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  1. KSRO has been cancelling great segments and dismissing talented personnel now for several years. I have little reason to urn them on. Too bad – a local AM station is a nice thing to be able to rely on.

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  2. I am in Raleigh, NC and listen via podcast. I have never understood why KRSO did not slip national commercials into their podcast. Check out Adam Corolla’s podcast for how to monetize podcasts. With podcast, most people never skip the commercials because it is a pain versus just listening to the spot. I know the all KRSO local commercial backwards and forwards… “The best time to plant is a tree is 10 years ago but it not then then now., etc”

    Here’s hoping this situation is worked out….

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  3. This is really sad for the Sonoma County community. This was the one station that really connected with the people who make this place what it is. Do we really want advice on gardening from some ghost of a person on the east coast who has no idea what is truly needed to make things flourish out here! ( plants and people!!!!) Good job you guys, I will be sure to take you off my radio listening choices. Bring back the good stuff you idiots!

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  4. I’m adding my support to the previous comments.I want to do what is necessary to either convince Maverick Media of their mistake and lead them to reinstating “The Good Food Hour and the Gardening Show”. Perhaps it will be necessary to find an another station and funding sources. Whatever we can do to keep these wonderful programs and the community together.I’ve been a faithful listener for most of the LAST 25 years. KSRO was how I started my mornings. Steven and John have been a commitment for me. Similar to ” CBS Sunday Morning “and “60 Minutes “on Sunday Evenings.

    I feel lost without them.

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  6. PS – Be sure to get thru to Steve Jaxon and let him and the station management know our feelings. Steve will be the next to go.

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  7. Wow, what can they be thinking.
    These are the shows that connect us to our own community. They promote local business as well.
    I hope they don’t replace it with something like the ” Monti show”. We were treated to his brand of intolerance for anyone unlike him last weekend. Truly ill individual.

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  8. So much for “Local” programming. Very sad indeed! Hey, new owners of the Press Democrat! Wanna buy a radio station?

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  9. With food network and cooking channel do they think this is going with the times. So many foodies and so many home gardeners give me the farmers market and skip KSRO bye

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  10. I, like SO many other Sonoma County residents (and beyond ), was confused (and yeah Ellen, it WAS like tuning in to some parallel universe) and then angered and saddened yesterday morning to find that my weekly gardening and cooking shows – with their darling informative,funny and entertaining LONGTIME hosts – were GONE and replaced with some boring generic and apparently non local shows. It reminded me of when they (Maverick Media) did the same thing to another local and equally precious KSRO talk show host – of course, Steve Jaxon who, thank heavens, returned and with his own sponsors! Today I found out that Curtis Kim also has been given the ax. It is a sad,sad commentary that big money comes before the loyalty from the hosts as well as from the listeners. I send out my disappointment to Maverick Media and my support to Steve Garner who has done some really special things for this community, and to talented chef John Ash and to everyone else connected with Garden Talk and The Good Food Hour – as well as Curtis Kim. I hope that they all come back – if they want to.

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  11. WTH? I am almost in tears! I loved Garden Talk! It is amazing that the idiots running Maverick couldn’t foresee the backlash from this! Oh, and by the way Maverick, the constant use of Lauren Marks to do all the voices on your commercials, is annoying. I am sure she is a lovely person, but really, I am sure you could find someone else to do the voices once in a while. I am so dissapointed in this change. Ugh!!

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  12. I was so dismayed when KGO dropped 99% percent of their real talent and was horrified yesterday by the crap, generic, know nothing substitutes for the Garden Show and the Good Food Hour on KSRO. Please, Maverick Media – we love our local programing and will completely shun your station with the drivel you aired yesterday.

    You are your own undoing.

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  13. Maybe there should be a local boycott of KSRO. It appears not to be much of a local station anymore.

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    • VERY sad indeed!!

    • If you want to ensure that the last of the local shows are cancelled as well, this would be an effective way to make it happen.

  14. Cuts, syndicated shows, and less of a ‘local’ flair, but more importantly: YOU SOLD OUT, AGAIN!!!

    As for kzst, if you’ve listened to Brent’s morning show lately, it’s not much of a show anymore. Debbie Abrams has gone to her own time slot after Brent, and the hideous music they play is catered to a target audience in middle school, and stuck in the 70’s crowd. Not to forget that kzst too is syndicating much of their late night and weekend programs.

    Gone is local radio, both AM and FM who care about the community, and are participants within. BTW kzst and brent, we have heard enough about Friedman’s.

    And Maverick Media, you’ve destroyed a once worth listening too group of stations. And please, don’t be another follower stating that this is where radio is heading, like your “In San Francisco, KGO cut Dining Around with Gene Burns (along with a number of other shows) in 2011,” analogy. KGO too SOLD OUT, and myself and tens of thousands of other ‘former’ listeners to kgo and now your garbage programs are fed up with your we don’t care attitude!!

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    • Andrew, I am sorry to hear that you don’t like the show on KZST but there are some things I need to set straight.
      First of all, Jacqui , our mid day person, had cancer, and the entire staff jumped in to fill her air shifts so she could keep both her job and her health care. Only recently has she told us that she will not be coming back to KZST.
      We are trying to find a new talent as good as she was to fill her role on KZST,but great talent is hard to find. If you know of someone have them send me their tape or mp3.
      The music on KZST is what the listeners want, I know because I ask them and in a number of different ways. We do numerous Local audience music research projects and every month I invite a number of listeners , picked at random from our KZST website, to have lunch with me in the KZST. conference room.
      We talk about the issues that concern them, listen to music we play, and ask them for their opinions on what we as a Local radio station can do to better serve the community. Many of the most loved features of KZST were created in those meetings by those listeners.
      You are wrong that KZST has a syndicated night or weekend show. In fact , if you call the KZST studio, this weekend you will get a real live person in the control room . I encourage you to call 707-284-1000
      Our night oldies show with Wolfman Jack is created right here in Sonoma County, and is the only show of it’s kind in the world. I obtained the raw voice tracks of the real Wolfman from the family and have painstakingly recreated his show.( he died in the 90’s )
      Using an amazing array of technology he even talks to local callers from Sonoma County. Since I create and edit that show personally I can tell you taht unlike almost all of the other radio stations, KZST’s night time is not syndicated .
      KZST is a Live, Localy Owned and Operated radio station that believes in serving the community in which we live. We have been doing it for over 40 years.
      If you have any suggestions for programming I would love to hear them. My personal email is Brent@

      Oh and by the way, I only talk about Friedmans 1 time per morning show, for 60 seconds. ( it is a commercial ) I guess radio really works !!! Thanks

    • Thanks Brent. Glad you cleared that up.

      Brent and I do a Thursday morning show about the local food scene in Sonoma County and have been for — wow is it gonna be three years in February?

      Neither of us get additional revenue or perks (other than the occasional morning barbecue feast or donut or other delicious dish a guest brings in) — we do it because we believe in Sonoma County.

    • Brent, I appreciate your response, and clearing up your weekend 60’s tribute( not a good fit ). However, I still cannot understand that your audience desires to listen to the, what I term “bubble gum” music, and “stuck in the 70’s and 80’s” tunes. The vast majority of your play lists are female artists, whining about something, and maybe only about 10% of the current artists. At one time about a decade ago KZST was worth tuning into 24/7.

      As for Jacqui, I was aware of what she was going through with respect to her treatment in San Diego at the time, and I even emailed her my best for a successful and speedy recovery and return to KZST. She’s missed.

      You Brent, and Debbie, make the best morning show team in Sonoma County, and I, as well as others miss your combination of talent and fun. However, the music selections NEED to be more diverse, and not so predictable, and whiney, and maybe strongly consider doing one hour music ONLY blocks. Meaning no KZST ads either snuck in between songs. It’s very annoying when you’re thinking you’re listening to non stop nice music, then you have to hear even a 5 second plug for the station. We know what station we’re listening too, and in the digital age, it’s not difficult to see the 100.1 numbers.

      Two final comments: 1. the “where’s Debbo” event you once did once a week or so, became very dangerous. People would park across the street in the Kaiser parking lot, wait for Debbie to leave, then follow her to the location. Not very fair to other listeners.
      2. Many of us do not use FaceBook. So it might behoove you to put all your information on the KZST website. Especially videos and pictures. And links you mention occasionally.

      Thanks to you too!!!

  15. These two shows provided a service by broadcasting from events in the county.
    I too miss Jim Grady.

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  16. Another point that was not mentioned was the fact that those two shows told about events happening in the community when they would broadcast from the place. They performed a service for many. I also miss Jim Grady.

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  17. Sonoma County will certainly miss listening to this quality pair of epicureans and their guests. The interesting places in Sonoma County that I learned about and the people that I met through listening to the will certainly be missed by me. I hope that it was an oversight that the show didn’t get to close with several programs that featured John and Steve’s favorite’s and the ability to allow the community to say “goodby” and “thank you” for all the joy and education that they gave us. This show was all about us, in Sonoma County. Who we are, what we want to learn about, our history, our food, our soil. What a loss. Why, I guess we, the community, will have to follow John and Steve where ever they go.

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  18. Absolutely tragic on all fronts. These shows were the gems of KSRO.

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  19. Kzst is still locally owned and Having worked with Brent for several years I know how committed he is to the local market. I also know several folks who work at ksro and they are great people and really dedicated. If we all stop listening that doesn’t hurt maverick. It hurts the people who work there. Voice your opinion and vote by listening to local shows and patronizing local advertisers. As someone who has been in the thick of changes in local media ownership at the PD I can tell u all that local support is more important than ever for us ALL. My thoughts are with my ksro media brethren!

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    • Ps. If people make a big enuf stink and are willing to support John and Steve I would be surprised if they couldn’t find a way to make something work. Lets support them!!

    • KSRO has a Facebook page, post there if you want to see them bring back Garden Talk and The Good Food Hour. Maybe they’ll listen?

    • Heather, How would you suggest to ” make a big enuf stink?’

    • Angelique and others: Email the station manager

      Post on the KSRO Facebook page. Make your views known!

    • Another big way to make a difference is to find a way to support the show. I know that there are some plans in the works, and if the show is to come back, they will need local businesses to support them. Reach out the radio station and let them know you’ll be willing to support a revamped show financially.

      Or email me personally. and i’ll help connect the dots if i can.

    • Heather – stop listening is only one way to impact the station. The BEST way is to listen and contact each and every advertiser and let them know we will top using their businesses if they continue to advertize on KSRO. IT seems that the Conneticut bunch has forgotten where there income is generated. Eventually Maverick will get the picture.

      Has anyone started a boycott campaign?

  20. KSRO has just written their own obit. This is the last straw. Ending the Garden Talk Show and the Good Food Hour is their demise. I’m also sorry that Curtiss Kim has been let go.

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  21. No local tv and no local radio. Unless u speak Spanish of course. This city sox.

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  22. What a shame, Curtis Kim also gone. I so much enjoyed waking up to him in the morning. It won’t be the same. Will go back to Bay Area radio. Good by KSRO. It was great all these years.

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  23. We used to listen to KSRO every day back in the Jim Grady days but it has been many years since we even thought to tune in. It’s not even programmed on any of our radios in the house or cars. After cutting these two programs, there is absolutely no reason to ever tune the dial to 1350 AM.

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  24. I, like other listeners, were taken aback when Steve Garner wasn’t the voice on the air this morning. I too thought I had tuned in to some parallel universe on my a.m. dial. What a poorly thought out management decision to abruptly take these shows off of the air. Garden Talk and the Food Hour has become a place for many residents to tune in to over the years for great information on our community, and many many helpful tips in our gardens. It is tiring to think that management can just dictate to listeners what they think “we” want to hear, versus what we want to hear, what we have been hearing, and have responded to vehemently for decades. I as well as countless others will not be tuning in to a syndicated garden show that is on the East Coast. Garden Talk was community education at its finest. I have been a regular listener for over ten years!!! What a loss to me personally and to the garden community of listeners. It is hard to believe that this show is no longer on the air… it just takes my breath away

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  25. Maverick Media…after the Fox got axed, I’ve had nothing but disdain for their stations and their way of doing business. Another instance of Sonoma County radio listeners getting snubbed…

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  26. I tuned in as usual to listen to Garden Talk.
    Was confused at first with someone Ive never heard of.
    Once I figured out it WAS ksro I was listening to?
    I changed the station.
    Very sad. I really enjoyed both Garden Talk AND the Good Food hour.

    Didn’t they JUST have a little deal about how long both have been a part of Sonoma County???
    Too bad. Dont think I’ll need to tune in anymore.
    Thank you for all the good yrs of listening to Garden Talk and Good Food.

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  27. I used to listen to KSRO all the time, when they had good local people doing the talking. Garden Talk and the Good Food Hour, especially Garden Talk, were the only good programs left. Now I can just take KSRO off my radio settings. Too bad–those were good local shows. KSRO is useless now and I can’t imagine who listens to it.

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  28. Too bad. Those were the only shows I listened to on that station.

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  29. Just shut the station down completely! ksro blew it big time when they let Jim Grady go, and NEVER recovered. All you hear are commercials, and that annoying “ksro, the news and talk of Sonoma County,” over and over and over again.

    RIP ksro, you will NOT be missed!!

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