Weekly Obsession: And that’s Plaster, by George

Sunday, September 25, 2011 at 10:05pm

Just after 3 p.m. Monday, Eddie Van Halen’s iconic synthesizer introduction to “Jump” beamed out from the top of Rutledge Hill, same as it ever was.

It’s Nashville’s Moog-based sports-talk security blanket. “Jump” plays, and then George Plaster greets us: “Hello everyone.”

Except Monday, it was different.

It was longtime Plaster sidekick Willy Daunic giving us the greeting on WGFX 104.5’s Allstate Sports Zone, not the avuncular afternoon staple.

After eight years in the prime slot on The Zone, Plaster had left.

It was a bit of a death foretold. Plaster came to 104.5 in 2003 after a decade at WWTN, a stint that ended acrimoniously — and litigiously — when Cumulus Media purchased WWTN and Plaster tried to change stations. It was a time of breach of contract claims and countersuits, but after two months, Plaster was back on the air.

But then Cumulus bought 104, the sale finalized two weeks ago, and Plaster opted out of working for the new bosses. He says he’s going to explore his options — maybe he’ll end up at new sports-talk launch 102.5 The Game — and take a breather.

In the meantime: Who will give us “about two minutes”? Who will be bold enough to refer to those ubiquitous mobile devices as “car phones”? Who else will extol the virtues of gift-wrapping that’s always free?

Plaster has his fans, no doubt — otherwise those high-dollar advertising partners for big ticket items like diamond rings, home additions, work trucks and mortgages would go elsewhere. 

But Plaster is more than that. Plaster is a habit. It’s 3 p.m., flip on the radio and listen to George talk about the Braves with Danny Evans and then do an hour on the NFL and American film with John McClain. Or, it’s 3 p.m., Plaster’s about to blather on about the Braves, and that kooky guy from Houston is going to talk about the time he had dinner with Merlin Olsen and Gina Lollobrigida — time to switch over to NPR.

Like traffic snarls in Hickory Hollow, Plaster is a part of Nashville’s afternoon commute. Plaster and those close to him — Daunic included — say the Doyen will be back on the airwaves, somewhere, eventually.

Like those I-24 back-ups, George Plaster’s going to still be part of our afternoon. Eventually. Just hang up and listen.

3 Comments on this post:

By: 742180 on 9/26/11 at 7:24

Personally I hope ( and urge) 102.5 to try to make it without George Plaster. Plaster is a local hero who has little appeal outside of middle Tn bandwidth. His incessant bumbling and sticking his foot in his mouth is really inexcusable.
We here in Nashville are lucky to have such good sports talk. The addition of 102.5 is wonderful and to have snared ESPN Radio is quite a coupe de gras. Their content is good and it will only get better.
104.5 allowed the 'director' to lull them to sleep. His local appeal and ability to draw advertisers was misleading enough to overlook the poor programing. His former show is far better with him gone, Willy and Chad do a much smoother show.
To coin a phrase, 'its the audience stupid, it's the audience'. Men are going to listen to Sports Talk and advertisers are going to try and reach them regardless of wheather George is there or not.

By: TITAN1 on 9/26/11 at 8:44

I like Plaz. I didn't always agree with him, but he is down home and a local guy. The ratings don't lie. His show was always at the top and I'm sure it will be again. I didn't listen everyday. If I tuned in and it wasn't a subject I was interested in, I simply turned the radio to a different station. I like the local emphasis. I don't care for the national stuff. I hope he does land at another local station.

By: localboy on 9/27/11 at 12:50

I hope one of the stations program more baseball, like the ESPN game of the week or 'gasp' the Braves network...from where I sit it's pretty hard to pick up that weak sgnal out of the 'boro if I want to listen to the Bravos.