Dees quickly e-mailed Orange Country Register media columnist Gary Lycan: "We launched a one-year marketing campaign with my friends at Clear Channel to increase the awareness and revenue of Hot 92.3. The campaign has been a great success and we look forward to other new shows and marketing strategies with the talented team from Clear Channel in the near future. See you on the air again soon and at www.rick.com plus all over the world with the Rick Dees Weekly Top 40 and Daily DeesRadio Show. Be caller #10."
A&O has been fortunate to work with Rick's production company and I can personally testify that his positive attitude isn't just "spin."
He's the real deal. An entrepreneur who gives 100% to everything he undertakes.
Greg Ashlock, president and market manager of the Clear Channel stations in Los Angeles, wrote in a memo to his staff also quoted by Lycan last week, "Rick has been with us for a year and we've thoroughly enjoyed every moment. He's a consummate professional and we wish him the best as he pursues some national opportunities."
Before I say much more, let's put my personal biases on the table.
I know what Ashlock says about Rick is true,
Hindsight is 20/20, but I have always felt that if Emmis had put Rick in mornings on KZLA and kept it country back in 2006 when they hired him to relaunch the station at "Movin' 93.9" it would have been a match made in heaven and country radio in Los Angeles would be billing considerably more than what Go Country 105 has been doing very happily since they filled the void, due to Dees' power with listeners and savvy with advertisers.
I am a big Dees fan (click to listen to three consummate pros in action earlier this year on Ellen K's birthday on KISS-FM as an example of why I am).
I admire his ability to bring his entire self and skill set to every opportunity as well as his business acumen, professionalism and optimism in dealing with career adversity.
He's an inspiration to anyone who's serious about building a long-lasting career in this business.
Lesson #1: when the station you're on is positioned as both "hot" and "old school," make sure your fan base really wants you to be "old school" too and if it's possible to be both things the position statement promises.
Lesson #2: when, like happened with "Movin'", people describe the place where you work as "the Rick Dees Station," it could be a sign that the station's music format may not be the best one to attach yourself to unless you're prepared to work 24/7.
Lesson #3: when the axe falls, be proactive and positive. You want to work for these people again in the future.
Lesson #4: keep a lot of other irons in the fire.
If you're ever in Burbank, stop by his studios just off the Ventura Freeway near Riverside and Olive and see everything he's up to.
And, if you're ever in need of a place to broadcast live from beautiful downtown Burbank for a special event, I know he'd be pleased to do business with you.
That's Rick. Moving forward, never looking backward.