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May 7 2005

I Can No Longer Get My Steve Dahl Fix

191hiatustape.pngI'm bummed.

I just sat down ready to do a blog entry, work on some digital photos and do a little research on Westlaw for work. Such long weekend nights at the computer usually start, as they did tonight, with surfing over to Dahl.com to download the Friday radio show of Steve Dahl, 27 year veteran of Chicago radio, so that I can listen to it while I work.

I grew up in Chicago and listened to what was then Steve and Garry (Meier) starting in the early eighties. Steve Dahl had first gained national attention on July 12, 1979, for Disco Demolition which blew up a pile of disco records at the Chicago White Sox's Old Comiskey Park between games of a double-header. An unplanned rush of fans onto the field resulted in the Sox forfeiting the second game.

192steveandgarry.gifIn 1981 Steve was fired from WLUP (The Loop) for "assaulting community standards." The appeal to a rock loving male high school student should be obvious. But don't get the wrong idea. The attraction of Steve or Steve and Garry was that they spoke their minds and made fun of everything in a manner that didn't insult the intelligence of their audience. Unlike, the talentless grade school potty humor of Howard Stern and his ilk, Steve Dahl's humor and commentary appealed to a more sophisticated audience.

During the latter half of the eighties when I was in college, Steve and Garry were sometimes broadcast on the AM which allowed me to pick up crackling broadcasts at the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana. When I went out of state for grad school, my dad would occasionally send me cassette tapes of the show that he recorded for me. Over the years he sent me about forty tapes, many of which got played many times over. It was just nice to hear about people and events happening back home. Even the commercials were enjoyable as they reminded me of home. In 1993 Steve and Garry parted their ways. It took me ten years of my intermittent listening to get used to Steve without Garry.

193stevedahl.jpgSometime just before the turn of the century, after internet radio broadcasts and downloads become common place, I emailed The Steve Dahl Show several times and even made it on air once requesting that Steve either simulcast or make copies of the show available for download. The answer was always the same, that it was in the works. Finally, in 2002, copies of the show became available for download. Since then, I've listened to a show every two or three weeks, just enough to maintain my thinning connection to Chicago and days gone by.

Very recently, Steve made his show available via daily podcasting, a system originally designed for Apple iPods which automates the downloading process. Unfortunately, due to the increased popularity that podcasting brought the show, it finally came to the attention of the higher-ups that making the show available for download over the internet conflicted with Infinity, ASCAP, BMI, and SESAC licenses. Accordingly, all downloads and podscasts have been suspended. Streaming is supposed to resume next month. Until then, I have three years worth of occasional downloads to listen to. Right now it's a best-of program broadcast on December 31, 2004.

Posted by Don |


  1. #1
    Jon said on June 8, 2005 | Reply

    By any chance are those previously downloaded files anywhere to be found online? You obviously have quite a few, and I'm looking for a way to get my hands on em. drop me an e-mail if you can help me out.

  2. #2
    douglas said on July 2, 2006 | Reply

    do you still have any steve and garry tapes?! i would love to have some copies if you do, i have many from their wlup and wls days to offer in exchange, or cash.

  3. #3
    Don said on July 2, 2006 | Reply

    Yes, I still have my mini-collection of around 40 tapes. And, while I appreciate the offer, I just don't have time to make copies. Sorry.

  4. #4
    Steve said on August 18, 2006 | Reply

    I graduated from high school in 1981 in suburban Chicago and was a Steve and Garry fan, as well. I moved to Phoenix shortly before their breakup and my only connection had been reports from friends still in Chi-town. I recently acquired an iPod and have been listening to Steve, Buzz and Wendy everyday. It has been an absolute blast, like going home.

    Today, Friday, Aug. 18, 2006, Steve was broadcasting from Oak Street Beach and Garry Meier stopped by, and stayed for the duration of the show. If you don't have iTunes, it is worth getting it to hear and save this show.

  5. #5
    sharon Paschke said on August 19, 2006 | Reply

    hey there,
    Did you hear the steve dahl show on friday? I missed it and I can't believe it. They reunited. My dad would also send me tapes while I was in college in Kansas. I listened from the very beginning. My sister in law also happens to work at westlaw. How weird is all of that?

  6. #6
    Leon said on October 8, 2006 | Reply

    I'm not familiar with Steve Dhal or radio show at all
    but I assume the licensing issues you spoke of are because of the music played in the show being available for download

    where I live the radio stations that provide podcasts
    just cut the music out of the cast

    doesn't take a genius

    maybe you can suggest it to them

  7. [Edit...just inserting a line so that the formatting on my blog doesn't get mess up.]

    you might enjoy my steve and garry post at:


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Don Danz and I are more kindred than I had suspected. I am 38, born in Chicago, lived there until the early 90's sometime, moved a few places, and ended up in Oklahoma. (Of course, I attended Loyola instead of U of I, never set foot in a grad school, a... Read More

Tracked on May 9, 2005 3:20 PM