Hearne: It’s Time for News Radio KMBZ to Bring Back Tom Becka


In the spirit of not missing your water til the well runs dry, it’s time to bring back one of KC’s best talk show hosts…

Former KMBZ personality Tom Becka never turned in Rush Limbaugh-like ratings during his tenure here, and his raspy voice was a known irritant to former Entercom boss Bob Zuroweste. That said, the 50-something yakker looks like Prince Charming in the rearview mirror compared to most of the hosts that have followed in his footsteps.

And until radio giant Clear Channel pulled the plug on its stations across the country yesterday, Becka was kicking butt and taking names at KFAB in Omaha. He was let go as part of the sweeping cutbacks reported by Chicago media columnist Robert Feder.

"When the largest radio company in America assembles its major market general managers in Chicago today. it won’t be to tell them what a swell job they’re doing," Feder wrote yesterday. "Instead, if knowledgeable industry reports are correct, Clear Channel Radio will set in motion massive cutbacks that could lead to what one analyst called ‘a new form of local radio.’ ”

Translation: "By the time the plans are implemented, the company could be operating with far fewer employees and virtually no local involvement in what goes out over the air and online," Feder added.

Unfortunately for Becka – but perhaps fortunately for KC – Feder’s prediction was spot on.

As a result Becka is ready, willing and able to take his show on the road and help bring about the higher ratings KMBZ has hoped for since going with an FM simulcast earlier this year on the signal of former adult contemporary station KUDL FM.

"I’m looking at all of my options right now," Becka says. "And I’m going to take a little time off and regroup."

Would Becka consider a return to Kansas City?

"I mean, I’m open to anything," he says. "I have a lot of energy and now that they Royals are going to be contenders, of course I’d like to come back to Kansas City. I’ve been dealing with (the Royals’) AAA team up here and I’ve seen the quality of players that have come down to Kansas City. So I know KC’s going to be a contender next year and I’d love to come down and watch ’em play."

Becka’s been ruling the roost for seven years in Omaha, but he totally knows KC and could hit the ground running, complete with the kind of name recognition that would vault him onto the map post haste.

"We’ll see," Becka says. "But if Kansas City wanted me to come back, I’d be happy to come back. And now that the river’s gone down, it’s an easy drive."

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14 Responses to Hearne: It’s Time for News Radio KMBZ to Bring Back Tom Becka

  1. Orphan of the Road says:

    Or maybe
    Johnny Dolan could return to the Worlds Happiest Broadcasters too?

    KMBZ advertising itself as “newsradio” is beyond laughable. They are all talk except for the morning shows infotainment.

    Though she is not my cup o’ tea, putting Darla on in S&P’s spot would result in better ratings.

    Hell Bip and The Little Tramp would have more to say than what S&P put out over the air.

  2. kcfred says:

    Carcasses on the radio highway
    Mark Edwards PD of KUDL/THE POINT/whatever is out too, along with Jim Ladd of LA Radio fame. It’s a dangerous business to be in.

  3. Hearne says:

    Hey, Becka is on top of his game
    Sounds like we all mostly agree that KMBZ could use a boost

  4. Orphan of the Road says:

    KMBZ probably needs

  5. smartman says:

    Tom Drecka?
    Yeah, let’s go back to the future and retread the old bias tires. Let’s play some TIME BOMB and have a PLATTER-POLL!
    FUCK THAT! Becka had a good run here and in Omaha, so time to MOVE ON not MOVE BACK.

    Christ, I could do a radio show, while I’m working, and smoke EVERYBODY from 2-6, and it’s got more to do with the current lack of talent puddle being so awful and not that I’m so great. I could base my whole schtick on abusing callers that say uh, um, OK, ya’ know, OK, so, I mean, OK, alright, at the end of the day, Ok, uh, um, well, so.

    Way to go PUBLIC EDUCATION! You took CARPE DIEM and made it CRAPPY DIME.

  6. chuck says:

    Holy 40 Star Survey!!!
    Id listen to smartman and Orphan , and bschloz could do the weather and finance at the top of the hour.

  7. xxMillerTimexx says:

    Give it a shot Smartman!
    I mean why not? You can comment with the best of them, but can you give 4 hrs of programming? I mean go for it, I can not listen to KK anymore because he has lost his ever loving mind with the B12 stuff, Nick Wright blows anyway you cut it. I could use a fresh face. Smartman, give your opinion on Taxes, Health care, and the Economy. Lets see if you have the stuff. This is your interview. GO!

  8. smartman says:

    @Miller Time
    Here are a few of my first day in office EXECUTIVE ORDERS to restore the economy.

    Make the mortgage industry change the way they calculate and apply principal and interest so all homes are PAID FOR in 15 years NOT 30.

    Start a NATIONAL LOTTERY with minimum weekly prize of 100 MILLION DOLLARS…50 MILLION after taxes. All proceeds go towards debt reduction.

    Eliminate ALL capital gains tax but institute a 75% DEATH TAX on all estate assets above 5 Million Dollars. This country made it possible for you to get rich, spend it while you’re alive or we’re gonna take it.

    Make all health insurance carriers pay for 50% of Complimentary Alternative Medicine Treatments with a cap of $2K per year.

    De-Certify all TEACHERS UNIONS and establish common basic criteria for K-12 education and have it taught via satellite or cable with proctors in each classroom who will tazer kids that don’t pay attention.


    Establish ONE CREDIT BUREAU. Fuck all this Experion-Equifax-Transunion can’t get shit right the first time or get it corrected bullshit.

    License LEGAL sports books in all 50 States. FUCK LAS VEGAS and THE MAFIA. Generate 100 BILLION in license revenue annually.

    Eliminate all Federal-State-City and County sales-income and property Taxes in favor of a 30% sales tax on ALL transactions under TEN GRAND, 20% on those OVER Ten Grand. ALL commercial and residential Real Estate Transactions at 10%

    Institute $5000.00 penalties for out of wedlock childbirth, and yeah I’ll let gay people have kids or adopt. Have FEDERALLY RECOGNIZED CIVIL UNIONS. No gay marriage bullshit. And if you argue with me on that I’ll institute a sodomy tax for the homos and a cat tax on lesbians.

    Pay TEN GRAND for a marriage license. You get divorced before 25 years you lose it. Money will be invested in a broad market ETF and returned to you with interest on your 25th anniversary.

    Declare War on MEXICO and make it the 51st State. Get their economy back on track so the Mexicans will go home. Gonna be lots of roofing and landscape work.

    OK gotta go, buddy of mine just scored GAME SEVEN tix on Stub Hub. ROAD TRIP! Biscuits and Gravy at the BOBBER on the way to STL!

    OH Yeah, I’d also break up the State of Texas into 50 smaller states and make UT move to D2.

  9. chuck says:

    Great ideas smartman.
    Plus, this might open up a few opportunities for the proles. bschloz just called, and we are gonna move to Witchita and invest heavily in abortion clinics. I have already call blocked Bill O’Reilly’s phone number. 🙂

    I like the sales tax ideas, but the enforcement would have to be draconian, or, no one would pay it, and retailers would be bullshitting their asses off and claiming to be “Distributors”. We would all incorporate.

    Some of those ideas had me LMAO. East of Troost, the shit is hittin the fan baby! The first week these laws are enacted, we will have AIG type debt in a matter of hours. BAILOUT!!! Obammmma will be addressing the press from 75th and Prospect (Is that Nick Wright’s girlfriend in the crowd?) in an effort to keep our great nation calm in the face of soaring national debt, once again. You just put THOUSANDS of preachers, teachers and “community leaders” outta work. The unemployment rate jumped up to 98% in the 3rd 4rth and 5th districts.

    But no one cares, cause the birth rate just went flatter than Jimmy Hoffa’s EKG.

    Godamn are there a lot of confused Mexicans. The fuckers don’t know whether to shit or go blind. More nervous than a coked out cat in a mess of guitar strings. No one can communicate, and everyone is packing to go somewhere, they think, maybe…

    My advice to those Mexicans, is don’t go to war, but stick around, speak English and head straight to fuckin Hallbrook. That inheritance tax means HUGE wage increases for a revolution in LANDSCAPING!!! If your in your dotage, and gotta spend it all, why not dress up the yard a little. Fuck it, import some Redwoods. Every rich guys house in the United States, is gonna look like 12 fuckin Oaks.

    Pretty funny shit smartman. Have fun at the game, I am “Home, home to Tara.”

  10. Fairplay says:

    Great show, smartman. Now, what do you have lined up for Tuesday? Wednesday? All the way to Friday? Becka put together compelling stuff every day, not just a list of tirades for one afternoon. When you can do that, then you MIGHT be able to compete with him.

  11. smartman says:

    Next show is how easy it is to convert a majority of gas powered cars to run on compressed natural gas for around $3500.00 and how for an additional $1500.00 you can fuel them at home assuming you have natural gas running to your house. Sorry Ray-Pec.

    Also how BIG OIL is working behind the scenes to keep this from happening through BULLSHIT local legislation.

    This is PHASE ONE of my energy independence plan.

    Next show is a special version of Kansas City JEOPARDY. First three players/guests are Craig Glazer, harley and Alonzo Washington.

  12. Orphan of the Road says:

    Good start
    Get the government out of the marriage business, that’s for the various religions to decide. Marriage is too important for government to be involved. Civil unions the only things government is qualified to oversee. If churches wish to marry gay couples that is fine. It is fine if they don’t as well.

    The $500,000 penalty on children born outside of a civil union/marriage is as dumb as the draconian drug laws. It will only flood the courts. When the little head is doing the thinking it ain’t gonna worry about fines or penalties. Education always works better than legislation. While abstinence is really the only successful birth control, teaching it has not lowered teen pregnancies. The youth who sign those pledges have the same, or worse, record of pregnancy. Somehow young people must be given the information on how to prevent pregnancy when they have sex. The devil is in the details as always.

    No national lottery, lotteries are a tax on the stupid which is heavily paid by those who can least afford it. But I will entertain your national lottery plan if incoming money is directed to lowering the national debt and state lotteries are eliminated. Gambling would be decriminalized. States which allow gambling parlors and sports books will be heavily taxed. Any company obtaining a gambling license will be required to structure their executive compensation so the top guy will be payed no more than 10 times the rate of the lowest payed worker in the system.

    Capital gains should be taxed as ordinary income. The present tax code would be scrapped and replaced with a flat tax and a consumption tax. Food, clothing and basic shelter will be tax-free. Death tax laws will be written so individuals can distribute their wealth before they are dead. Estates with more than $5 million would be taxed heavily. The redistribution of wealth should be done by the individual but if they refuse the government should be overly compensated for it.

    If you want a government-sponsored student loan you will sign a contract to pay 0.05% of your earnings when you graduate. If you don’t graduate the rate would drop to 0.025%. High schools would be required to provide a liberal arts education for students who want to go to college. Students who don’t want to go to college would be able to enroll in training programs which teach various trades which are in demand. Teachers would still be required to take CE classes but they would no longer be given a raise just because they took a class and passed it. It does not happen in any other profession and it shouldn’t happen in education.

    General education would continue until what would be a students sophomore year. At that time they would choose a liberal arts/college prep course or a vocational track.

    The US Congress, President, Vice-President and members of the Supreme Court would have their salary and benefits restructured. They would be under the same laws, regulations and practices as the common citizen. Dormitories would be constructed to house members of Congress. Styled along the lines of college dorms they would be part of the compensation package. If they want to live off campus it would be on their dime.

    Health insurance will be mandatory. There will be a government option. But to be eligible you must serve four-years in the military or be a member of the national guard or reserves.

    The War on Drugs ends NOW. Decriminalization would be the first step for users. Any legalization and taxation of what are now illegal drugs will make the first priority rehabilitation of drug abusers. Taxes on alcohol and tobacco would also provide for treatment programs and to pay for the government option on health insurance.

    Money donated to a college athletic endeavor would no longer be considered a donation to education and as such would not be tax exempt. Athletic scholarships would guarantee the student will have the opportunity to complete his education after his eligibility to play has been used if necessary. Or scholarships based entirely on athletic ability would be abolished. Scholarships would be based on need or ability rather than extraordinary hand/eye coordination.

    Natural resources would become the exclusive property of American citizens and its sale and use reserved for America. A sustainable energy and agricultural policy will guide policy. Catsup and relish will no longer be considered vegetables.

    An admission by the Executive Branch the United States of America has been in violation of a Supreme Court ruling for 180-years. While there is no feasible way to redress the wrongs of the years of illegal actions by the government it is an admission of guilt. The government and the oil industry have already admitted they stole over $6 billion dollars from the Indian Nations. If we are truly a nation of laws we must live up its virtues.

    As they say, the devil is in the details.

  13. Craig Glazer says:

    Always Liked Tom/ but like Shanon and Parks As Well
    Tom is a good guy, does a nice job. I think Shanon and Parks have done very well in a market that is tough. When I am on as a guest I still feel plenty of energy from them and listeners. Lots of calls. So I don’t think their show is bad at all, in fact often fun. The mistake is that KMBZ plays to an older audience and is so far right. KMBZ needs a middle of the roader with both audiences young and old. So you keep Mike and Scott but add something new.

    As Johnny Dare has proven, KC likes its local gossip and news with local talent.

  14. Hearne says:

    I’m not saying blow out Shanin and Parks…
    I’m saying squeeze in Tom. I’ll take the politically correct road and leave it to the wisdom of corporate as to where, but if they could read my mind right now I’m thinking of two distinct places…

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