Update: Olbermann responds to SNL skit

tjndc5-5b4dl4iamz9sxta7nb6_original.jpgJohn McCain’s campaign not only praised the senator’s performance on Saturday Night Live over the weekend, but spent even more time talking about the sketch making fun of MSNBC anchor and Tarrytown native Keith Olbermann.

Olbermann responded to Time magazine today with these words:

“Honestly, everybody deserves a laugh but if on the weekend before the presidential election they spent more than seven seconds bothering with ME, the campaign staff has even less of a clue than I thought.”

Olbermann then goes on to credit the McCain campaign for helping him beat Bill O’Reilly in the TV ratings, and then teases to this juicy tidbit that he’s going to reveal on his show tonight:

“One last SNL thing: I’ll be reporting the details on this tonight. ask them why Governor Palin didn’t say her first line as scripted three shows ago. As they pulled back from the monitor shot of Tina doing the impression she was supposed to compliment Tina. Could’ve been a real rehab to her image – why’d she refuse?”

Interesting…

(AP File Photo)

Olbermann skewered on SNL

Ben Affleck nailed an over-the-top impression of Keith Olbermann this weekend in a sketch for Saturday Night Live.

Olbermann apparently was so curious to see how Affleck was going to portray him that he crashed the SNL set on Friday to watch the rehearsal.

If you’ve never watched Olbermann’s Countdown show on MSNBC, he’s known for being a bit extreme in his commentaries, calling just about everyone a fascist dictator and demanding their resignation.

My fave part was the Special Comment segment at the end. Check out the sketch below:

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But my fave Olbermann impression of all time is still this YouTube video.

‘SNL’ newbie Bobby Moynihan first topic of today’s Howard Stern show

The likeness of Eastchester native and new “Saturday Night Live” cast member Bobby Moynihan to comedian Artie Lange was the first topic of conversation on Howard Stern’s radio show Monday morning.

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Lange serves as a sidekick to Stern, who launched his professional radio career in Briarcliff Manor.

Here’s how the show started while Rob Zombie and Stern’s “American Nightmare” theme music slowly faded in the background:

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Howard Stern: I don’t even know where to begin.
Robin Quivers: Well, you could say ‘Good morning.’
HS: Uh, good morning. That’s a good place to begin. Every television show has like a Belushi type; now it’s the Artie type. ‘Saturday Night Live,’ look at the latest guy they got: Bobby Moynihan. Who’s he look like, Artie?
Artie Lange: (Laughs.) Does that look like me?
HS: You know, that— does that look like you?!
RQ: Oh, my God. Of course it does!
AL: No, well, uh—
HS: It’s like the Artie type—
AL: I told you— Artie type?! It’s the Belu—
HS: The Belushi type.
AL: John Belushi got guys like me a career. God bless that guy.

OK, so the entire Bobby Moynihan conversation lasted 35 seconds. But after only two “SNL” appearances, at least word is spreading fast and Stern’s assessment was rather benign.

As Bedford resident Chevy Chase will tell you, being an “SNL” alum on Stern’s cranky side can have serious pitfalls; only in recent years did Chase and Stern amicably settle a nasty public feud that raged for nearly two decades. Continue reading

MSNBC pulls Matthews and Olbermann from anchor chairs

MSNBC has yanked Chris Matthews and Tarrytown native Keith Olbermann from anchoring live events, after on-air feuds between the two created a storm of hilarity the past two weeks during the Republican and Democratic conventions.tjndc5-5b4dl4iamz9sxta7nb6_original.jpg

David Gregory will now be anchoring live election coverage, including the presidential debates. Despite the network’s slogan, MSNBC is NOT the place for politics, ranking dead last in network ratings during both conventions.

I’ll still watch MSNBC over CNN though, but that’s mainly because I have an intense rage of jealousy over Wolf Blitzer’s neatly trimmed beard.

(AP Photo/Richard Drew)

Keith Olbermann vs. Tom Brokaw

Finally, a hardcore Westchester vs. Westchester brawl!tjndc5-5b4dl4iamz9sxta7nb6_original.jpg

MSNBC anchor Keith Olbermann, who grew up in Tarrytown, is trying to get MSNBC to ban Tom Brokaw, who lives in Pound Ridge.

Apparently Brokaw has expressed his dismay of Olbermann’s heavily opinionated reporting, and now Olberman is trying to give Brokaw the boot.

By the way, I highly recommend you watch the Democratic National Convention coverage on MSNBC this week. Even if you’re not a political junkie, it’s worth tuning in because Chris Matthews, Keith Olbermann and Joe Scarborough  have fighting nonstop on the air.tjndc5-5cx5s59ynsn1cltm333q_original.jpg

Last night, Keith Olbermann did this handpuppet gesture to make fun of Chris Matthews, and Matthews cut him off and threatened him.

Huffington Post has all the details, with clips.

(Olbermann: AP Photo/Richard Drew)

(Brokaw: AP Photo/Danny Moloshok)

Josh Hamilton, former Hudson Valley Renegade, hits 1 of his 38 Home Run Derby dingers into ‘Pelham’

It’s the new math.

hamilton.jpgComeback kid Josh Hamilton of the Texas Rangers crushed 28 homers in the first round of last night’s Home Run Derby at Yankee Stadium — 20 more than any other player in that frame — but lost the doggone thing because the Minnesota Twins’ Justin Morneau hit more in the third and final round.

Never mind that Hamilton, who relaunched his career with the Hudson Valley Renegades, outslugged Morneau overall, 38-22. Or that Hamilton’s total could have been even bigger had he not essentially skipped the second round so that he could save it for the third. Totals from the first two rounds don’t carry over. Pffft. What a joke.

No matter. Did you see some of these shots? The Journal News’ Brian Heyman does a great job describing three of his most magnificent:

502 feet off the Bank of America sign behind the right-center bleachers and below the frieze; 504 feet to the back of the bleachers near the video board; and 518 feet to the black seats in center….

And while the Bank of America sign shot was the third-longest of the bunch, it was doubly exciting. The thundering thud with which the ball hit the sign was like none I’d ever heard as a devout, lifetime Yankee fan; and it was in the extremely short list of home runs ever coming close to being hit out of the stadium, even in an exhibition format.

A couple of LoHud-related notes about the broadcasting of Hamilton’s blasts:

Using the Yankee Stadium public address system to call the live action for the stadium crowd was Hartsdale resident Michael Kay, the main play-by-play broadcaster for the Yankees’ TV broadcasts.

And calling the Home Run Derby action for ESPN was Chris Berman, an alumnus of The Hackley School in Tarrytown. At the 3:53 mark of this must-watch MLB.com highlight reel, here’s how Berman described one of Hamilton’s moonshots: “This one is in Pelham!”

(Photo by Frank Becerra Jr./The Journal News)

Catherine Zeta-Jones trotting around Tarrytown today

This just in from intrepid Journal News reporter Nicole Neroulias: tjndc5-5j2zoqphgeog2zbaf42_layout.jpg

A film crew is backing up traffic on Bedford Road, near Coprock Road, this morning. The crew is filming “The Rebound,” a movie starring Catherine Zeta-Jones. Police and film crews are stopping traffic periodically along Bedford Road, also known as Route 448. Drivers should expect delays throughout the morning.

In the movie, Zeta-Jones plays a single mom who captivates her 25-year-old neighbor, played by Justin Bartha (“National Treasure”). The movie started shooting in Manhattan earlier this month, is due in theaters next year.

UPDATE: Nicole confirms that the film crew moved into the Pocantico Hills Central School for interior scenes for the rest of the day. Here are some shots she took of the production today.

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(Location-shoot photos: Nicole Neroulias; AP Photo of Zeta-Jones in Australia in March/Rick Rycroft)

‘History of Howard Stern’ spends 90 minutes on Westchester days

howard.jpgThirty years ago, Howard Stern launched his career as a professional deejay in Briarcliff Manor. The radio world would never be the same.

With Stern and his crew off for holiday break, Sirius satellite radio has been broadcasting the premiere of “The History of Howard Stern� in lieu of his live morning radio show this week. Featuring first-person interviews and narration by Jim Forbes of “Behind the Music� fame, the first 90 minutes of Tuesday’s broadcast alone were dedicated to Stern’s days spinning vinyl in Briarcliff and plugging various businesses and events throughout the Lower Hudson Valley.

“My first radio job really was WRNW in Westchester and that was a very difficult situation for me,� Stern said during the special. “I was not a good broadcaster; I was not a good straight broadcaster, and I wasn’t thought of much.�

Recently completing his second year of a five-year, $500 million contract at Sirius satellite radio, Stern said he launched his full-time career with a $5,000 annual salary on Jan. 1, 1977 at 107.1 FM. He was 11 days shy of his 23rd birthday.

“My first shift, when I got on the air, I was so nervous my hands were shaking,� he said. “The station was empty, thank God, because it was New Year’s morning. I hit the button to play the record, the whole board jams up. I must’ve hit it too hard.�

Reflecting on the incident with sidekicks Robin Quivers and Artie Lange, Stern said he woke up the program director when calling him in the ensuing panic.

“The engineer came in and started yelling at me – this big fat guy – and he fixed it at some point, I guess,� he said. “And all the other jocks heard me and they think I was horrible. I was the laughing stock of the station. The program director was going to fire me, I heard, because I woke him up. And again, I had to beg for his mercy. I said, ‘I’m so sorry.’ He goes, ‘You’re terrible; you’re horrible.’ It’s a miracle I sit here today.�

In addition to Briarcliff, check out the “King of All Media’s” direct connections to Armonk, Elmsford, Tarrytown, Bronxville, Scarsdale, White Plains and Yorktown after the break.

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Suburbarazzi Week in Review on RNN: Stone rolls, Kalter quips and Rosie not the closest to the actual retail price without going over

After the break, find out the answer to this week’s quiz question: Which local stand-up comedian received early show business advice from the late father of Tarrytown product and fellow stand-up Greg Fitzsimmons?

Download:

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Greg Fitzsimmons discusses afterlife, comedians with Howard Stern

AP/Stuart Ramson Stand-up comedian Greg Fitzsimmons, who was raised in Tarrytown, stopped by Howard Stern’s studio this morning to discuss, among other things, Fitzsimmons’ Sirius satellite radio broadcast last night, the afterlife and fellow stand-ups.

Stern, who launched his professional radio career on 107.1 FM in Briarcliff Manor, commended Fitzsimmons for his recurring Sirius show, which Stern said has been getting rave reviews. The ability appears to be hereditary, as Fitzsimmons’ late father, Bob, was a famous deejay and TV host himself. (More about Bob Fitzsimmons’ connection to another Lower Hudson Valley comedian later.)

After Stern congratulated Fitzsimmons for his radio show, Stern sidekick Artie Lange teased the guest with some dark humor, saying “your father can complete the 180 (degree) turn in his grave.” Fitzsimmons laughed.

“God, I hope they don’t have satellite (radio) on the other (side),” Fitzsimmons said.

Stern asked Fitzsimmons if he believes in an afterlife. Replied Fitzsimmons:

<blockquote><div>

I don’t disbelieve it any more than I believe it. I’m right in the middle. I can’t imagine that with the amount of thoughts that go on in of my head, that I can’t stop without medication, that it all just ends immediately.

</div></blockquote>

Find out Fitzsimmons’ takes on Billy Crystal, Steve Martin and the greatest living stand-up — and which other local comedian’s early career was helped by the elder Fitzsimmons — after the break.

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Tarrytown comedian on Jeni suicide: ‘His whole identity was as a stand-up comic’

Greg Fitzsimmons, a frequent sit-in guest on Howard Stern’s radio show and a Tarrytown product, talked Thursday about the apparent suicide of journeyman stand-up comic Richard Jeni. Fitzsimmons told the former Briarcliff Manor deejay he received a late-night phone call from fellow comic Dave Attell, then reflected on his own 17 years as a stand-up comedian and Jeni’s personal life.

<blockquote><div>You see somebody who you respect that much and who you think has got it all, and then it ends like that and you realize that they’re really unhappy and that’s my future. Luckily I’m married and I have kids and I love them. I have some more balance in my life that he didn’t have. … His whole identity was as a stand-up comic. One quote that I heard was (from) a friend of mine (who) talked to him the week before (Jeni died) and (Jeni) was freaking out because his 2007 calendar was not filled — the <em>whole</em> year had not been filled. There were holes in it.</div></blockquote>

When fellow stand-up comedian Artie Lange chimed in with “See, that’s a sickness. That’s, like, crazy,” Fitzsimmons agreed to an extent.

<blockquote><div>That made him crazy. And again, I don’t want to say why he did it. I have no idea. There were rumors that he had an illness; there’s obviously a possibility that he had chemical problems.</div></blockquote>

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Where did the Howard Stern show first go to try to replace sidekick Jackie ‘The Jokeman’ Martling? Westchester County Airport.

Today on the Howard Stern show, Jackie “The Jokeman� Martling returned as a sit-down guest for the first time since the show moved from terrestrial radio to Sirius satellite radio on Jan. 9, 2006. There were plenty of laughs and awkward exchanges between Martling and friend/rival Fred Norris, who both wrote jokes for the shock jock before Martling left the show after a drawn-out contract dispute.

In early 2001, Martling rejected a final contract offer from Infinity Broadcasting (now CBS Radio) to return to the show and laugh too hard at his own jokes. Stern — who launched his professional radio career at 107.1 FM in Briarcliff Manor — agonized over the transition to move on, but it was one he said he had to make, according to producer Gary Dell’Abate (a.k.a. “Bababooeyâ€?).

After today’s show, the producer explained to listeners how Stern made his first real step toward replacing Martling by authorizing Dell’Abate to pick up a prospective replacement at Westchester County Airport, which straddles North Castle and Harrison and borders Fairfield County, Conn.:

<blockquote><div>Howard called me that weekend and he was like, ‘Listen, it’s done. Jackie’s not coming back. I just got off the phone with (92.3 FM General Manager) Tom (Chiusano). The last offer was made. We’re moving forward.’ And for Howard to speak those words was very difficult. And I remember we talked about who would we get to sit in. … He goes, ‘Hey, you know, Ron Zimmerman? The comedian? He’d like to sit in.’ And I remember, it was a big deal. I had to go to Westchester Airport on a Saturday night and put on my credit card a first-class ticket for him to come in overnight. But I remember when Howard gave me the go-ahead — he was like, ‘Fly him in’ — that was really the finality of it: that, like, we’re putting a different guy in that chair. And it was hard for him. It was hard for him to do that. He did not want to do that. It wasn’t what he wanted, but he was like, ‘I have to move ahead.’</div></blockquote>

In the months that followed, other comedians — including Tarrytown product Greg Fitzsimmons — would audition for the right to sit in Martling’s chair. Former “Mad TVâ€? star Artie Lange was awarded “The Jackie Chairâ€? later that year.

(Associated Press file photo/Louis Lanzano)