Remembering Tom Magliozzi’s “bright light”

Tom Magliozzi, co-host of public radio’s wildly popular Car Talk, died of complications from Alzheimer’s disease Nov. 3. He was 77. Magliozzi was born in East Cambridge, Mass., in 1937 and co-hosted Car Talk with his brother, Ray, from the show’s inception as a local broadcast of WBUR in Boston through a 25-year run as one of the top draws for public radio listeners on weekends. The show ended original production in 2012 due to Magliozzi’s declining health, yet it continues to attract large audiences for local stations while airing in repeats.

Car Talk co-host Tom Magliozzi dies at 77

Tom Magliozzi, half of Click and Clack on NPR’s Car Talk, the Tappet Brothers, died Monday of complications from Alzheimer’s disease. He was 77. Magliozzi and his brother Ray hosted Car Talk for 37 years before it ended production in 2012. The show continues airing in reruns. Doug Berman, the show’s producer, said in a blog post that Tom Magliozzi and his brother “changed public broadcasting forever.”

Car Talk was still #1 among NPR weekend shows in spring 2012

A new report from Walrus Research shows that NPR’s Car Talk continued its streak as NPR’s most popular weekend program in Spring 2012, with Wait Wait … Don’t Tell Me! coming in second and Weekend Edition Saturday a more distant third. The report says airing the three shows in sequence is the “ideal scheduling to benefit all three programs.” Car Talk goes into repeats starting next month.

Eric Nuzum

Where does Car Talk belong? Let listeners decide

NPR’s v.p. of programming responds Ira Glass’s suggestion that stations not devote prime weekend airtime to Car Talk reruns after the Magliozzi brothers retire this fall. Like Ira, I’m really excited about all the innovation in public radio today. Each of these new programs will need several things if they are to grow and prosper: an intellectual spark, real talent giving them a unique, authentic voice, money, smart plans for development, and stations willing to take a small risk. There is one other critical thing they need to grow and prosper: Car Talk. Airing Car Talk on Saturday mornings doesn’t stand in the way of innovation.

Want new radio hits on Saturday? Step 1: Drop Car Talk when the guys retire

I enjoy Car Talk. I like those guys. And as a public radio lifer, I’m grateful for what Tom and Ray Magliozzi did to bring a vast audience to public radio, year after year.. … But — with all respect to Doug Berman and my colleagues at Car Talk Plaza — I think when they stop making new episodes in October, they should be pulled from Saturday mornings.

Car Talk led the way to homogenization of noncom radio, writer says

“Car Talk is the exemplar for consolidation and homogenization on the noncommercial end of the dial,” writes Paul Riismandel, adviser to WNUR-FM at Northwestern University, on Radio Survivor. Riismandel notes that “as syndicated programming has taken over the programming schedule of public stations, local news, information and culture is pushed off. Car Talk is a program which pushed the frontier of this movement.” He cites the 1997 uproar when Wisconsin Public Radio canceled its popular local About Cars program to carry Car Talk, which culminated in a hearing before the state legislature (Current, March 17, 1997). WPR received Car Talk free in exchange for continuing a contract to distribute its own syndicated program, Whad’Ya Know?