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Russ Martin Speaks on Getting Canned by the Fan

Yesterday Live 105.3 switched formats. It’s now mostly sports talk, and it’s called The Fan. With the switch,  afternoon drive ratings juggernaut Russ Martin was let go. He was kind enough to answer a few questions via e-mail:

FrontBurner: Was yesterday’s format change a surprise to you? When did you learn of it?

Russ Martin: Surprised? Not really. Got an e-mail from a friend over the weekend that KLLI had registered The Fan website. They officially told me Monday afternoon.

FrontBurner: When is or was your contract up?

Russ Martin: They indicated they’d honor the remainder of my contract, which runs through April of 2011. So, no worries. Very odd, though, to be paid seven figures annually to do nothing. Gonna sit back, relax, and get me some of those Dr. Shoal’s jelly pads for your feet.

FrontBurner: What did station management tell you about their decision?

Russ Martin: They said nothing more than they were flipping to all sports talk and apologized — many times. I told them I didn’t perceive this as a personal attack and to make sure my money showed up every two weeks.

FrontBurner: I assume you can’t comment on any other station you might be in talks with. But would you ever consider doing mornings again?

Russ Martin: As far as other stations, I haven’t heard from anyone. My e-mail inbox exploded yesterday and had to use an auto responder. That way every e-mailer at least got something.

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340 comments on “Russ Martin Speaks on Getting Canned by the Fan

  1. Personally I glad he’s gone!! His show sucked!! Seven figures??.whatever…he’s not worth four figures as a radio personality.

  2. Are they freakin crazy!!!!dont we have enough
    sports news as it is.big mistake.i leave in east tx and russ martin was the best thing out there.so no matter how much we complain
    it wont do any good.but w all know what goes around comes around and bites us in the butt.
    And to all those people that didnt like russ martins show.SCREW THEM

  3. The Fan?! The Fan?! You gotta be kidding me! Like we don’t have enough sports radio in Dallas already! Too bad for Kidd Kraddick; he won’t have anyone to steal ideas and bits from anymore…2 things will kill a radio personality and his show: no ratings and no revenue. You tell me, which one was Russ not able to bring to KLLI? The most popular show for 8 yrs running in DFW? Gavin and David Henry are morons…
    We are waiting for you Russ, JD, Dan, Clo, Chuck…your faithful fans will follow you.

  4. Does a non compete include TV like a new “Hot Ticket” They could call it THE TREE HOUSE I’d so watch that.

  5. We are waiting for you Russ, JD, Dan, Clo, Chuck…your faithful fans will follow you.

    Ditto above!

    - Russ – Please speak to your faithful and loyal followers! We need to hear from you -

  6. It’s about time this low rate Stern wanna-b got what he deserved. BTW, he’s lying about the 7 figure salary. It’s in the low 6 figure range but his delusions of grandeur are pretty much to be expected!!!

  7. Well Lee, is that all you’ve got? I’m happy to see you believe everything your hear on the radio. I suppose you believe everything you read on the internet as well…..

  8. You know, I have listened to the Russ Martin Show for the better part of 8 years and I have not found anything else worth listening to. When I found out the show was canceled and Russ got “fired”, I sent an email to the station (I hope you got my email Gavin), I have not listened to broadcast radio since. RMS was the only worthwhile show on the dial, so now, my Ipod and CD changer have become my source of driving entertainment until RMS makes its way back to the airwaves. I sincerely hope that Gavin is the next one to get the boot (as I’m sure he will). Stay strong people, RMS will be back on the air in no time, and if I have to buy satellite radio to hear it…..THE F’N MONEY IS WELL WORTH IT!!!!!!!!!!

  9. I just had a thought…..Russ has enough money, why doesn’t he get his own FCC license, and run the show from his house, whenever he wants to. I would listen no matter the time of day or night if he should choose to do that. Or better yet, the RMS has talked about buying the crapped out CBS building they were previously housed in, why not buy it and tear it down….that’ll show them…lol

  10. I speak for all the female listeners who say We miss you Russ!! I am a nurse and I loved the fact that he was so abrasive yet so caring. I get it! Can’t wait for him to find a new home.

  11. It bears repeating – there is a website with a petition to bring russ back – you can sign it anonymously;

    http://bringrussback.webs.com/

    Don’t know where it will go, but over three hundred and fifty people have signed it, looking for for one thousand. There are great comments too!

    We are with you russ!

  12. Try Sirius/XM! Yeah you gotta pay a little but i guarantee that a week or two of satellite radio will having you saying Russ who?

  13. Oh my! please find a new home soon. My hour to hour an half drive home is a total bore with you and your great team. You brought so many laughs for so many years to my daily commute. Hurry back on the radio you are missed!

  14. Russ was the victim of CBS Corporate Management and their long term goals based on/coupled with some a percieved “public outcry” concerning morality or “righteous indignation,”….creating a ” “Too hot to handle,” situation.

    We, the true listeners, must suffer from the comments and charges of a few in the Morality Police sector who listen to shows and determine, from their perspective, what is “Good,” and what is “Bad,” for airing to the public at large. That would certainly be you and I, excluding them.

    The FCC is obligated to review and respond to complaints. Starting with the Janet Jackson wardrobe malfunction through Howard Stearn at the higer levels, the witch hunt gained momentum. The FCC started getting more complaints from the nutbags like the one (name escapes me)who used to call Russ, threatening him with what has now occurred.

    That individual probably had an army of faithfuls who flooded the FCC and they were forced to put pressure on CBS (others too), and if this affected sponsors, ratings or any single Executive at CBS, the death nell was sounded.

    Russ has ben “Imusized,” for lack of a better term, for screwing an individual for the sake of the greater moral good. The screwers, would not know satire, “a bit,” or good old “ball-breaking,” amongst Russ and his crew, if their lives depended on it.

    Therefore, exit all! Kill the messenger, punish the listeners, appease some dim-witted, courage lacking sponsor, or easily offend, nutless, CBS exec, who can not make the deterination of what is fact or what is fiction.

    No-one looked at the tremendous good done by IMUS for kids with cancer, SIDS funding, and the Fallen Heros Foundation Veterans Hospital in San Antonio. No-one dared to consider Russ’s position, regarding the Police and Fireman in North Texas and the fine, indivdual effort to create a fund for those injured or killed in the line of duty.

    Let’s punish them for getting killed or injured and deprive their families of needed near term financial resources and recognition becasue Russ tries to trap JD into using the N – Word. Exit all! Be Gone!
    My African American friends are asking, “Russ is gone, whatup with dat? Dats just wrong,” and they mean it from the depths of their very souls. Courage brothers! He’ll be back.

    Sorry, didn’t mean to get off on a rant there….just lamenting the decision that CBS made for me as to what I can or can’t listen to.

    But ask IMUS, Stearn or Russ what they told any offended listener: “Don’t listen. Change the station.”

    Russ – We need you. Please make the effort to provide some feedback. Support is a mutual deal.

  15. I have totally taken 105.3 off of the radios I listen to. It is no longer a favorite station. I have listend to Russ seems like forever. He makes the drive home bearable. He did alot to bring the station from the bottom to the top. So this is how they repay him? Russ has always bounced back and he will again. I will wait for him on another station.

    Since going to all sports they really suck! They are boring. They sound like they have no clue as to what to talk about. I get my sports from “ESPN” radio and the “Ticket”. These guys will never compare to those stations. They don’t have the talent to do sports. To try and listen to Jagger and his crew talk sports. Well, they speak for themselves. They will be next. Why do what they did? Read Bob’s reply it says it all!!!!

  16. @ Blah:

    I totally agree. The popped Russ, and Leykis.
    And Leykis was doing his syndicate for free.
    And it drew just as many listeners.

    I knew something was up when they took leykis off a few months ago. But then monday afternoon, No Russ. I was pissed.

    105.3 is not on my radio anymore. I’ve decided to replace it with Kraddick, of all people.

  17. I must say I’m a little mystified by CBS/Henry electing to keep the “Jagger Mafia” in the morning slot – a less sports-oriented gang you will not find… it kind of leads one to believe that the firing was more than just a format change expedited by the desire to cash in on the Dallas Cowboys post-season…

    But this isthe response I expected. Russ is a pro & will be back – perhaps on XM? In a market where 3 corporations own every station worth talking about he’s not going to burn any bridges.

    Best of luck Russ…

  18. As sad as it may be, I am listening to O&A on he XM re-reobroadcast during drive time. I boycott AM180, FM1053 and the others due to this poor decision. Go Russ and crew!!

  19. How long can this go on? The interminable drive back to FTW every afternoon? The depression creeping in from all sides, choking me. The voices in my head, subtle reminders of the tyranny and oppression of communist regimes. Visions of slaughter in the streets – listeners, ruthlessly gunned down. It is coming! They are on the way! They’ll be burning books pretty soon. We’ll have to wear little tags on our tattered clothing that say, RMS, as they force us onto the trains and off to the camps. Have mercy, Lord! Bring Russ back (JD too [He takes a lickin’, but keeps…..).

  20. I Think LIVE is making a very bad choice. To take the best show they have a toss it out the door is just plain Stupid. STUPID STUPID STUPID!!! (RMS) will be back.

  21. I go to houston for a couple months, come back with a desire to hear russ, and now i find myself devastated. Come back russ! Start your own station! Do what it takes! Your fans need you!

  22. the drive home everyday is now pondering on what’s for dinner instead of stuff we can never get on cable. please make it stop! i have erased 105.3 from my buttons! the drive home will never be the same! i am 45 yrs old and have listed to russ since his 1st day on the eagle…miss ya little buddie!

  23. Forty five years old! I’m sixty two (wife tells me to “grow up,” … “act your age,” but I don’t buy it! She sucks and I secretly loathe her – she found you know who – now, life sucks out loud)….and I am really, really, suffering with the long commute. It is not right! I wrecked my hacksaw cutting down the barrel of my ten gauge Remington Pump. Cut off the stock, too! It fits under my trench coat and I have it on the seat next to me for the (now), “ride of dispair.” Rage engulfs me! There is no-one on the radio making snide comments and cruelly abusive remarks to JD, which would normally lift my spirits and make the commute bearable. (Sorry JD – nothing personal)

    Russ took the edge off! Now……….Go ahead …Cut me off …Make my day….@$$#o!+!

  24. I miss Russ & the guys more than anything. Afternoons are such a bore without them. The sooner they’re back the better, and hopefully it’ll be before April 2011.

  25. I use to listen to Russ all the time but ever since Howard Stern went to Sirius I have had Satellite Radio. If you have not made the change you do not know what you are missing. This should be reason enough to get a Sirius Radio and YOU chose what you listen to instead of letting the executives control you. Russ give Howard a call, he could fit you in on one of his channels.

  26. I take Lithium now and the voices have subsided somewhat. I leave the Reminington at home most days. It is still the ride of dispair (similar to the walk of shame) but I could not help but think of the poor widow of the law enforcement officer who was killed yesterday.

    Russ would normally have taken care of her and her fammily. Thanks CBS and 105.3! The deprivation of the funds for them weighs heavily on my mind and I hear a faint whisper asking me if this is right?

    I will ponder this from 3:00 to 4:00 this afternoon as I drive home in my continued, self induced radio listening silence. Is it right – Only God and Russ truly know. The decision was made by the station management. Odd that they take pride in their decision. Does anyone listen any more?

    Could someone please tell me where I can see the ratings. That would be interesting. I had a fleeting thought that Osamma Bin Laden might have been involved with the show being cancelled. I think he was a stringer for CBS News at one time.

    I still think Russ has done more for Sports than Babe Ruth, Mickey Mantle and Johnny Unitas combined and there was no need to put more sports on the radio. I also think Russ did more for law enforcement than J Edgar Hoover, Elliott Ness and the Lone Ranger. People just don’t understand why he never tried to take more credit in these areas, but I do.His humble humility is yet another fine example of his truly humanitarian nature and his contributions to the American way of life.

    I failed to mention what Russ has done for animals and I feel a flush of shame for overlooking this. Russ has done more for Animals than Lassie, Rin Tin Tin and Mickey Mouse combined. Russ is legend! If animals listened to the radio – they too would be upset.

    May the good Lord watch over us all with Russ gone. We need you Russ, and we understand your silence (I (We) think).

  27. The Police/Fire foundation is alive and well. See Russ’ Myspace and continue to donate. There is a copy of the $30k check given to our latest hero’s widow yesterday posted on his Myspace page.

    To any in doubt, this is a true sign of who Russ Martin really is.

    KEEP THE FOUNDATION GOING…. http://www.russmartin.com/listeners_foundation.asp

  28. I moved away from Dallas about 2 years ago. Missed Russ everyday. Now I find out that I may never hear him again. I am sad to hear that he will no longer be on 105.3. He was the only person who could make me laugh out loud while I was commuting through Dallas rush hour. My sympathies are with you Dallas.

  29. I can’t find any updates on RMS…With Clear Channel firing locals and putting on national shows, is there any hope of RMS ever returning EVER?!….If he is under contract until 2011, seems he will be silenced forever…Figures…The RMS crew was real talent…I rarely turn on the radio…Except t listen to ESPN or music…The Fan sucks…I’ll take Randy Galloway any day…Actually, every weekday now

  30. I too drive in silence on the ride home…no more laughing outloud. I HATE these sports guys, come on..give us a break!!!
    Russ, as much of an ass as you can be, you were OUR ass and we loved you!! I sometimes flip channels to see if just maybe you have popped up somewhere….
    I feel for The Jagger Mafia. I hope they know their days are numbered as well…they just do not fit anymore….(but we love them too!!!)
    Would someone PLEASE promise to post when these guys do surface again????
    Silence on Central Expwy.

  31. It is odd that we have heard nothing. The terms of the “Format Change,” must have been pretty restrictive. I was greatful to see Russ on TV when he donated $30K on or about January 7th, and wonder if he had to get the appearence cleared, as he didn’t say too much at all. The way I figure it, Russ is getting paid to stay home and I don’t blame him.

    I suspect (no basis in fact) that part of the deal was “at full pay with restrictive covenants” which preclude him from popping up wihtout losing his income. I imagine too, that Russ is P’O’ed enough to want to jump back on the air — but wise enough to keep his end of the deal – unless and until someone can come up with a lot of $$ for him (which meets or exceeds his present compensation).

    That being said – the ride home still sucks and I can only hope that some station can come up with the dinero to fund a show for Russ as it is unfair to listeners to bar the airway to a specific individual. It sounds to me like a loose arm of the “Fairness Docterine,” that Liberals devised to keep honest, hard working law abiding citiazens from being enlightened or in this case, entertained with a spin that they didn’t like.

    I still take the meds. Some things die a slow death and even though entries to this site have dwindled, the legend of Russ lives on in the hearts and minds of many Americans. I’m trying to get a job with no commuting time during the afternoon hours. I am thinking of going to second shift but I am a Project Manager and not many projects are managed in the dark.

    We can only hope for a miracle. Russ we understand. Semper Fi -

  32. I’m there with you man, the posts on here have died down, but I still come back from time to time to see if there is any news of the second coming of Russ. Had a thought thought, and I agree with him if this is his plan. To NOT pick up a nother gig even if they do offer more money, until his contract runs out. CBS radio big wigs prolly thought that “we can agree to keep paying him, someone will surely offer him more in the mean time and release us of our end of the deal.” I’d turn down other offers just to keep making them pay. Then again they also prolly didn’t count on the economy taking a continuing nose dive as it is. WTG CBS you get the D-Bag award of the year for business decidion, and the compition was freaking steep!!

  33. I had listened to Russ and the gang for about 10 years and loved them. Since the station changed formats I went ahead and retired in January. No way could I commute over an hours drive each day with nothing but silence. The Fan will never make it; nor, do I see the station surviving. Although I’m an old fat woman, yet I loved hearing Russ rag on and on about overweight, heavy set asses. In real life I bet he was a softy for us old flabby bitches. He made me laugh!

  34. I still listen to Jagger on the fan and this morning Dan O’mally was filling in, for those of you who quit listening completely. Ben and Foreskin suck and need to be replaced. If they would just bring Russ back in his old slot the station would be great. Because the two mid day shows before ben and foreskin, are actually pretty good.