Exclusive: Michael Graham out at NewsRadio 106.7 May 27; could Larry Wachs replace him?

By RODNEY HO/ rho@ajc.com, originally filed Friday, May 13, 2016

After two years, conservative talk show host Michael Graham is leaving NewsRadio 106.7, according to an email sent out to employees today.

His final day on the Atlanta news/talk station is May 27. He may end up going back for a job in D.C., where he worked in the early 2000s. He last worked in Boston.

His show "The Natural Truth," heard from 9 a.m. to noon weekdays, has pulled in modest ratings since management decided to add more talk voices to what had been an all-news operation.

NewsRadio 106.7 has struggled to make a mark in Atlanta since it debuted in 2012. As a whole, the station  pulled in just a 1.2 share in April, its worst performance since May of last year. It was tied for 22nd with non-commercial jazz station 91.9/WCLK-FM and new classic hip-hop station Boom 97.5/102.9.

Graham averaged a 1.2 share in the first four months of 2016 vs. 1.4 for the entire station. He typically placed around 22nd.

In comparison, Kim "The Kimmer" Peterson drew a 2.7 share, more than twice Graham's share, from noon to 3 p.m. That placed him around 16th place.

A few minutes after I posted my item, he wrote this on his Facebook page:

Sometimes you get "an offer you can't refuse" that DOESN'T involve horse heads in your bedding or Corey Lewandowski lurking outside your hotel room. Not long ago, I got one of those offers from MediaDC--the publishing company that owns The Weekly Standard, the Washington Examiner and Red Alert Politics.

After Memorial Day, I'll be in Washington, DC--literally walking distance from the White House (and some of Michelle's favorite vendors of handpicked, organic kale) helping create audio and video content as MediaDC's Creative Director.

I'll be working with some of the best political reporters and pundits in America every single day. Plus they're giving me video equipment and unleashing me on Washington, DC (along with a very expensive liability insurance policy)

This is an incredible opportunity to move into the fast-growing world of multi-media fulltime, and it's great news for me and my family.

The downside (for me, anyway. Gov. Nathan "Kneepads" will be thrilled!) is that my last day on the air at NewsTalk is Friday, May 27th. If you're near a radio or the interweb--please tune in!

My many, many thanks to the management of Cumulus Media and the people of Atlanta who put up with me every day.

See you (uh--hear you?) tomorrow morning!

Now the question is: who will replace him? The station in the email said it will do a national search.

The most obvious local choice is former Regular Guy Larry Wachs, who the station recently brought back to sub out for Kim "The Kimmer" Peterson .

Wachs, who created the Regular Guys in the 1990s and co-hosted the show for 15 years in Atlanta until late 2014, has since been honing his solo talk show chops on his Modcast app.

NewsRadio 106.7 program Director Greg Tantum and Cumulus Atlanta VP/market manager Sean Shannon didn't return calls and emails for comment.

Graham is a conservative who is adamantly against Donald Trump. His latest Tweet:

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About the Author

Rodney Ho
Rodney Ho
Rodney Ho covers radio and television for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.