5 'More' Questions with...Steve Dahl


5 'More' Questions with...Steve Dahl

Wednesday, Feb. 9, 2011

By Jeff NuichCSN Chicago Senior Director of CommunicationsCSNChicago.com Contributor

Want to know more about your favorite Chicago media celebrities? CSNChicago.com has your fix as we put the citys most popular personalities on the spot with everyones favorite local celeb feature entitled 5 Questions with...

On Wednesdays, exclusively on CSNChicago.com, its our turn to grill the local media and other local VIPs with five random sports and non-sports related questions that will definitely be of interest to old and new fans alike.

This weeks guestand back by popular demandhes a Chicago radio legend, pioneer, innovator, trendsetter, etcthat list can go on foreverfans can catch him hosting the 23rd annual Comcast SportsNet Sports Awards benefiting the March of Dimes on February 14 LIVE on Comcast SportsNet (coverage begins at 7:00 PM)a man whos truly one of a kindhere are 5 MORE Questions withSTEVE DAHL!

BIO: From Radio Legend to Podcasting Pioneer, Steve, in his 32nd year of broadcasting, has just as much to talk about today as he did on day one.

Steve Dahl is one of radios most successful and enduring talents, known for holding few topics off limits and allowing his listeners an intimate look into both his professional and private lives. He now invites listeners to experience an even more intimate glimpse of his life by doing his show in his own home studio where daily life and show boundaries collide. From Janet, to their dogs, Mable and Milly to their sump pumps, nothing is off limits.

Starting out his radio career in California and Detroit, respectively, Steve set his sights out for a career in Chicago radio, beginning with two stints at WLUP-FM (97.9, "The Loop") and the now- defunct WLUP-AM. He later spent five years at WLS-AM (890) and FM. Closing an 11-year chapter in radio at WCKG-FM (105.9) in November 2007, Steve moved to mornings on sister station WJMK-FM (104.3), also known as Jack-FM. Steve is still a member of the CBS family and records a daily 1-hour podcast from his in him studio in the western suburbs. With countless shakeups in the radio world, Steve has remained a Chicago mainstay.

Steves expertise is not just limited to radio, but extends to television and music as well. He won a Chicago television Emmy in 1982 in the category "Outstanding Achievement for a Single Program" for his work on Greetings From Graceland, chronicling his tour of Elvis' estate. Since then, he has produced groundbreaking programs such as ABCs story of the Beach Boys, Summer Dreams, and the shows It's Too Early, New Year's Steve and Garry and the CBS late-night show, The Midnight Hour. He also created and executive produced the PBS music series Soundstage in 2003.

Steve has hosted the Comcast SportsNet Sports Awards benefiting the March of Dimes in 2008, 2009, 2010 and will host again on February 14, 2011. The 2009 show was even up for a Local Emmy award.

Steves name is often synonymous with 1979s Disco Demolition. Some even call it Steves most influential contribution to the national music scene. Initially crafted as a radio promotion, Steve lead a Disco Sucks chant as an estimated 90,000 fans and listeners showed up to storm the field, joining him in setting fire to thousands of disco records. The event put Steve on the map in Chicago and the rest of the country, and earned him the reputation of being one of the most influential DJs in rock history.

His 25th anniversary in Chicago was recognized with a party in February 2003 at Chicagos Museum of Broadcast Communications. For his 20th anniversary, Illinois Governor Jim Edgar proclaimed February 28, 1998 "Steve Dahl Day" throughout the entire state.

Steve and his wife Janet reside in the western suburbs of Chicago. They have three grown sons: Pat, Mike and Matt.

1) CSNChicago.com: Steve, thanks for coming back for a second 5 Questions with interview. Truth be told, your first interview last year was one of our most popular to date so we had no choice but to ask you back for a second interview. On to the questionsfirst off, and this has to be asked right off the bat, with your existing radio contract ending this summer, which has kept you off the radio airwaves for the past two years, is it safe to assume your fans can expect to hear you back on the radio come this fall?

Dahl: I am really enjoying the freedom of podcasting, but the concept might be a little bit ahead of the curve technicallyfinancially. Media buyers are still trying to understand the digital explosion and what it means to their agencies and their clients. In the meantime, recorded podcasts are extremely low on the advertising dollar food chain. Its too bad too, because I have over 20,000 people a day who specifically seek out my show and then listen to it in its entirety. That would translate to extremely good radio ratings, if anybody would bother to do the math. Thats an audience that advertisers should be paying top dollar to reach. However, they tend to avoid what they dont understand. So, the short answer is yes, I will be back on the radio, or possibly a satellite near you. I also really miss being on the radio when big events are happening in the city. As a broadcaster, I have a need to be there for people when theres a giant snowstorm or a monumental Bears collapse.

2) CSNChicago.com: With the Oscar Awards season upon us and the fact that youve always been a big movie buff, any chance you went to see the more artsy Best Picture nominated films such as The Kings Speech or Black Swan? Its just kind of tough to picture you sitting in a theater watching those movies. And a follow-up heregive us your picks for Best Actor, Best Actress and Best Picture as well.

Dahl: You are imagining correctly. I have seen neither The Kings Speech nor Black Swan, and I will wait to see them in the privacy of my own home in case they make me weepy. Out of the 10 movies nominated for Best Picture, I have only seen True Grit and The Social Network. I plan on watching as many as I can via DVD or On Demand before the awards, because its always more fun to watch the ceremony with at least a few of the films under my belt. That said, AMPAS didnt do me any favors by expanding the Best Picture list to 10. I bet it increased movie going somewhat, since I cant be the only person who wants to see them all first. Based on what I have seen, I am giving all my awards to True Grit. I thought it was just a spectacular film from start to finish. I love the Coen Brothers when they are on their game. It should also win for best cinematography too. The scenery was some of the most beautiful I have ever seen.

3) CSNChicago.com: Isnt it time for everyone to just let go of the daily Jay Cutler bashing?or do you think the current harsh stance by both the media and fans will change him for the better come next season?

Dahl: I have no doubt that Cutler was really hurt, and that hes extremely tough, but I think he needed to be a little bit more dramatic about it. I think he was willing to go back in the game, but the Bears made the decision to keep him out. Pouting on the sidelines wont get it done for him, since hes always pouting, so you cant tell that theres anything actually wrong. Going on the exercycle to show the team thats hes okay sent a weird message to the fans, and Fox didnt do anything to help by making it seem like he had a phantom injury. Joe Buck is in love with Aaron Rodgers though, so I guess that was to be expected.

I think the Bears should have handled the PR aspect of that whole situation a lot better too, by getting out in front of it and saying Cutler took a shot, tried to play, but the coaches chose to keep him out. They should have alerted the media to that during the second half of the game. Also, shopping in LA the next day with K-Cav wasnt the smoothest PR move on Jays part either. At least get a pair of fake crutches just to shut people up. As for making the team better next year, as we know with Cutler, it could go either way.

4) CSNChicago.com: You recently participated in the White Sox Fantasy Camp in Arizona. What was your favorite moment from that experience and do you think youll ever do it again?

Dahl: My favorite moment from Fantasy Camp was when it was over and I could still walk. Seriously, I had no idea what do expect, and it had been some 40 years since I had played hardball. The camp was a blast. The White Sox run a first class operation out there in Glendale. The coaches were all great guys to hang out with, and by the end of the week, they had actually made me a better player. I dont know what becoming a better baseball player really accomplishes, other than to make me feel better about myself, but Ill take it. I would gladly do it again, and would love to take my three sons with me for the week sometime. I now also have a completely authentic 1959 White Sox uniform that should serve me well as a Halloween costume for the rest of my natural life.

5) CSNChicago.com: What body part of yours ached the most after you shoveled your way out of the Blizzard of 2011?
Dahl: I was in Florida for the storm, so mostly my butt ached from sitting around and watching it on TV. I did go across the street to the beach and shovel some sand just to stay in shape for future blizzards. I actually like to shovel snow. Its an excellent workout. I wear a heart rate monitor, to be on the safe side, and when it gets up into the 160s, I take a break and let my heart slow down to a more doable 130 or so. Truth be told: I was kind of jealous to be missing out on such a big event, and as I mentioned earlier in this interview, I really missed being on the air before, during and after the storm. Its what I do, and I feel like Im letting people down when Im not there to help them through it with a few laughs, and some fake school closings.

BONUS QUESTIONCSNChicago.com: Were once again thrilled youre back hosting the Comcast SportsNet Sports Awards benefiting the March of Dimes for the fourth-straight year and truly appreciate your support over all these years. As you know, Ozzie Guillen is this years Lifetime Achievement award winner. As a lifelong Sox fan and season-ticket holder, are there any game-related suggestions for the upcoming season that you plan on passing along to Ozzie that night?

Dahl: I love Ozzie, and I love the way he runs his ball club. My only advice to him would be to shut down Oneys Twitter account. Im all for family protecting family, but my kids would never do anything to affect my job in a negative way (even if they were standing up for me against attacks by Bobby Jenks), and if they did, I would make sure that it never happened again. Plus, where the heck is the guy code these days? What happens in the locker room stays in the locker room, even if you are mad at somebody. Theres plenty Oney could have said about Jenks like his losing velocity or his control, instead he went for the personal stuff. Not cool, little dude! I can tell you one thing, thats not the way we rolled at fantasy camp. We keep a lot of secrets out there in the desert.


Official Steve Dahl website

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Steve Dahl on Twitter

23rd annual Comcast SportsNet Sports Awards

Zach LaVine, Lauri Markkanen fail to produce in crunch time for Bulls

Zach LaVine, Lauri Markkanen fail to produce in crunch time for Bulls

Coby White’s second straight 3-pointer splashed through the net — a three that, combined with a Ryan Arcidiacono long-ball, capped a 9-0 run to give the Bulls a one-point lead over the Bucks with 6 minutes, 23 seconds to play.

For the second time in five days, the Bulls had an opportunity to knock off the Bucks, an Eastern Conference champion contender.

Then, reality hit. Or the starters returned. At this point, that’s one and the same.

Here’s all you need to know about where the Bulls’ rebuild stands as 'Year Three' fell to a 4-10 start following the Bucks’ 115-101 victory: Coach Jim Boylen admitted he considered riding a bench unit down the stretch over one that featured Zach LaVine and Lauri Markkanen.

“They have a guy that they can go to that can get them a bucket, which is what good teams have,” Boylen said, referring to the Bucks and Giannis Antetokounmpo. “I’ve been on those teams. We’re figuring out who that guy is and we’re learning to play that way. We’re not there yet.”

Boylen then supported his beleaguered core players, because that’s what he’s paid to do. But the sobering reality of the Bulls’ current fortunes didn’t just play out in LaVine’s stat line of 11 points on 4-for-16 shooting, or Markkanen’s 9 points on 2-for-12.

It played out when Boylen indeed returned to LaVine and Markkanen with 5:04 remaining, and the Bucks leading 103-99. From that point, the Bulls didn’t score another field goal.

Markkanen sank two free throws but missed a driving layup and 13-foot jumper. LaVine committed a turnover, missed a layup and a 3-pointer.

Game, set and match.

“They got the MVP over there. He did his thing. And we didn’t,” LaVine said. “It’s going to be tough when your leading players, me and Lauri, don’t perform at our level. You can understand that. You’re missing a lot of points and a lot of plays. We understand we have to pick it up.”

What’s that they say? Recognition is the first step towards recovery. The Bulls have to hope so, especially after Markkanen admitted his slump is affecting him mentally.

“It’s frustrating knowing I’ve never had this kind of stretch of not even not hitting 3s but missing layups and dunks,” he said. “I have to keep my head up knowing that you work too hard for this not to turn around. Keep working and I know it’s going to turn around.

“I noticed myself kind of thinking too much at the half. I tried to switch it up and make the plays for the team. That’s how you get out of your own head. I have to stay aggressive. Create contact and then finish every shot. Not getting out of it too early or anything like that. I’ve done my film study. Put the work in and I know it’s going to turn around.”

At one point, Markkanen actually missed two dunk attempts on the same possession. Following the second, he rolled his eyes toward the United Center roof as if to say, 'What’s next?'

Markkanen is shooting 36.2 percent overall and 26.8 percent from 3-point range. He missed all four three-pointers he attempted versus the Bucks.

“Just try to get an easy bucket and lay it in. But having two 7-footers there, I know it’s going to be blocked so I tried to go up quick and end up missing it,” Markkanen said of the dunk sequence. “It was frustrating. I know I can play better. It’s not going to be like this forever. I don’t know what else to say.”

Antetokounmpo made 13 field goals, equaling the total of five Bulls starters. How do you say 'ouch' in Greek?

“What I’m going to do is I’m going to support those two guys. I’m going to coach them like I always have. I’m going to show it to them on film and we’re going to work on it in practice. We’re going to get them to understand that we believe in them, we value them and that we need to do better,” Boylen said. “It’s all part of this process. We’re slugging uphill right now. We gotta keep slugging. That’s all I can say.”

Boylen said he returned to LaVine and Markkanen because he still believes in them. He has to say that and he has to believe that. The rebuild is structured for them to shine.

It’s not currently happening.

“I’m still developing two young guys,” Boylen said. “Zach missed a year-and-a-half. Lauri was hurt last year. He has basically played two years. I’m going to keep developing them to come in and learn how to win games. I believe in both of them. I believe they’re important to what we’re doing.”

Raising LaVine’s absence to an ACL injury and subsequent rehab is a curious approach from Boylen given that LaVine has been fully healthy and rehabbed for quite some time. But again, he has been placed in a position where he has to protect their play and lack of production in big moments.

The Bulls are a long way away from respectability at this point.

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Three observations: Bulls come up short against Bucks — again

Three observations: Bulls come up short against Bucks — again

For the second time in less than a week, the Bulls played the Bucks close, but came up just short — this time falling 115-101 at the United Center. Three observations from a soul-crushing loss:

Daniel Gafford: Free man

If I dumped all the expletives I have written in my notebook about Daniel Gafford from this game, you’d never read another article under this byline.

So, while I catch my breath, here are the hits:




Gafford ended the game a -4 in 20 minutes, but it’s hard to overstate the impact he had on a particularly electric Bulls bench in this one. He was every bit the gumptious, brick-bodied big that Jim Boylen billed him as, and so much more. Every second without the ball in his hands on offense, his feet were moving — setting screens and leveraging rebounding position. In the air, every shot, pass or lob within five feet of him seemed to find his hands, and then — rather violently — the bottom of the net.

At one point, en route to his team-leading 16 first-half points, a fan behind me exclaimed: “Him and Giannis are going at it!” In reference to… Daniel Gafford. What a night.

Gafford ended his stellar breakout performance with 21 points, 5 rebounds, 2 blocks and approximately 2.716 million hearts stolen, on 10-of-12 shooting.

The three-guard lineup provides a spark

At the very beginning of the season, Boylen’s utilizing of a three-guard lineup (Kris Dunn-Coby White-Ryan Arcidiacono) was widely panned. Tonight, that group — with contributions from Thaddeus Young and a combination of Wendell Carter and Daniel Gafford at the center spot — proved their mettle. 

In the first half, that lineup catalyzed a 20-8 run that pulled the Bulls from down nine with 2:17 remaining in the first quarter to up two with 8:05 to go in the second. In the fourth quarter, a torrid stretch by Arcidiacono and White vaulted the Bulls from down 98-90 to up 99-98 in a matter of 66 seconds, sending the UC in a frenzy not seen in quite a while.

The Bucks pulled away from that point on, but this lineup showed something tonight — so much so that Boylen closed with White and Arcidiacono both on the floor along with Zach LaVine, Lauri Markkanen and Wendell Carter. (Stunningly absent was Tomas Satoransky, who logged only 18 minutes tonight after coming out of the gate aggressive, offensively.)

Arcidiacono was on every loose ball in sight. White was a blur in transition and coming off screens and dribble handoffs. Combined, they shot 7-of-11 from long distance. Maybe Boylen is on to something.

Bulls melt down the stretch

The Bucks finished the game on a 17-2 run after that aforementioned White-Arcidiacono blitz. For most of the game, the Bulls were able to hang around despite being out-shot from three and on the wrong end of a 35-14 free throw disparity, but their energy waned late in the game. Despite miraculously out-rebounding the Bucks 50-48, out-scoring them in the paint 50-46 and competing defensively throughout, the Bulls couldn’t buy a bucket down the stretch (they failed to score a field goal in the final six minutes), and it ultimately cost them.

The blame is shared in this one. Lauri Markkanen and Zach LaVine combined to shoot 6-of-28 from the floor (only 0-of-4 in the fourth) and were largely outplayed by the bench unit. 

In a performance reminiscent of last Thursday’s in Milwaukee, the Bulls appeared to everything necessary to win on Monday. But they didn’t. Now, with a record of 4-10, the heat is on.

Attention Dish and Sling customers! You have lost your Bulls games on NBC Sports Chicago. To switch providers, visit mysportschicago.com

Click here to download the new MyTeams App by NBC Sports! Receive comprehensive coverage of your teams and stream the Bulls easily on your device.