Howard Stern was a personality that radio would not soon forget. But in 1982, listeners in the New York City area could only imagine what the hype was about.
And then August 30 happened.
Thirty years ago, Stern arrived in New York at WNBC Radio (clip below), complete with sidekick Robin Quivers, who first worked with Stern in Washington a year earlier. Of course, with his roots in rough and tumble Roosevelt, Long Island, this was Howard’s homecoming.
As characterized in his book and film, Private Parts, Stern dealt with internal clashes from day one at WNBC. Specifically, his verbal barrages with program director Kevin Metheny, not-so-affectionately called “Pig Vomit” in the film (“Pig Virus” in real life). Stern slightly altered the immortalized version of Metheny, changing his name to “Kenny Rushton,” played exquisitely by Paul Giamatti.
“The book and the script are fascinating, engaging, and entertaining,” Metheny tells FishbowlNY. “I think [there's] a fair and appropriate amount of artists’ liberties taken with factual elasticity in order to make a more interesting project.”
In one memorable scene, Giamatti’s Rushton attempts to teach Stern the key to success, announcing the call letters properly (W-N-N-N-N-B-C). (See clip after the jump)
“I’m certain that I was a pain in the tush with respect to putting the emphasis on the “N” in WNBC,” Metheny says.