While Boston talk-radio fans await the resolution of the legal dispute involving veteran WRKO-AM host Howie Carr, let’s give a “shout-out” to Michael Graham, who’s been holding down the fort for rival station WTKK-FM in morning drive over the past few months.
It’s amazing how much of an impact Graham has made in Boston despite having been at WTKK for just under two years. He has consistently delivered a quality broadcast filled with humor and insight; he is every bit as enlightening as he is entertaining. He’s been moved around the schedule quite a bit during his tenure at WTKK, but his ability to put on a top-notch show has always remained solid.
It’s odd to listen to folks complain about the generally poor quality of modern-day talk radio in Boston without giving credit to folks like Graham who are maintaining a standard of excellence. Graham has the same mix of courage, wit and intellect that made Boston’s past legends so memorable. If the courts decide that Carr must remain with WRKO, WTKK would be wise to make Graham the station’s permanent post-Imus morning host; he clearly has the potential to become a Boston radio institution.
Those who complained about WRKO’s decision to hire Tom Finneran as a morning host argued that Finneran, because of his political past, would not maintain WRKO’s tradition of holding Beacon Hill’s feet to the fire. If one finds Finneran unbearable, Graham is a fine alternative; his criticisms of state-government arrogance–both on his show and in his Boston Herald op-ed column–are just as harsh as some of Carr’s best stuff.
When Graham first came to Boston, he was the target of much criticism because of previous (overblown) controversies concerning his views on terrorism, immigration reform and violence in public schools. In a relatively short time, he has become the unsung hero of Boston talk radio. If Carr is legally barred from moving to WTKK, it won’t be the end of the world-because if “Boston’s Talk Evolution” makes the right decision, our mornings will still be graced with the Natural Truth.