"The Commentator?" That may end up being the new name for KOMO-AM/FM'ês current daytime talk show with Ken Schram and John Carlson, now called "The Commentators." Beginning Jan. 25, Fisher Communications is moving Carlson to the afternoon drive shift for a solo show on sister station KVI-AM. Carlson'ês new show will run from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m.
Jim Clayton, vice president and general manager of Fisher'ês Seattle operations, says they may try pairing Schram with guest hosts or have him go solo. In the short-term, Carlson is likely to remain for at least a portion of the four-hour Commentators program, heard from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Clayton says that management will be closely watching Carlson'ês stamina and ratings — which provide almost instant feedback — to help decide what to do.
Also new on Jan. 25 is former KVI (and former KIRO-AM) host Bryan Suits in the old Kirby Wilbur slot, from 5 a.m. to 9 a.m. Wilbur was dismissed in November after 16 years with the station, and KVI has been running the national Laura Ingraham program in his place.
'êKirby was much farther right'ê in his politics and harder for those not so far to the right to identify with, Clayton said. Both Suits, who most recently was at KFI in Los Angeles, and Carlson present themselves on-air as more moderate than Wilbur, and their choice as hosts on the newly rebranded 'êFreedom 570 KVI'ê reflects a significant shift for the once fairly conservative station.
Clayton also said Laura Ingraham will remain on KVI but will shift to the 9 a.m.-to-noon slot. Sean Hannity will remain on the air from noon to 3 p.m.