Christopher Lydon returns to public radio, but WGBH this time

WGBH announces that among the contributors to a new "Open Mic" segment on its "Boston Public Radio" midday show will be Christopher Lydon, anchor of the station's 10 o'clock TV news who later got famously fired in a contract dispute over at WBUR.

Emily Rooney, Rev. Eugene Rivers, Charlie Baker and Brian McGrory will also contribute to the 1 p.m. segment on Jim Braude's and Margery Eagan's new show. Lydon is slotted for Thursdays.



    Free tagging: 


    Brian McGrory?

    Oh, boy! Now I can find out Boston's best burger straight from the horses mouth! Hopefully he'll be bringing the Andelmans with him!

    Eugene Rivers call-in show?

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    Call in to get advice on how to run your non-profit into bankruptcy and best methods for chairing an ineffective laptop school committee.

    I suspect that rotating

    I suspect that rotating through people who aren't good enough on their own to have their own show won't be a winner. Radio relies on the personality of the host. People tune in because they know what to expect. In this case, diversity is not good.

    The connection was a good show

    but Lydon got too big for his britches, believing he was worth more to WBUR than they were willing to pay. I agree with you on the others, though, and expect Lydon to eventually take on a few more days as the also rans get dropped.

    Big heads all around - but Lydon's was somewhat more deserved

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    Let's not rewrite history here - yes, Lydon and McGrath (his producer) were getting big bucks (well for public radio - not really for successful talk radio in general). And yes, on top of that they were asking for a slice of the syndication revenue. But honestly, they and their crew made The Connection into a serious moneymaker for WBUR, and were becoming real powers not just in boston-area talk radio, but nationwide as well. In it's last year with Lydon, the show allegedly brought in about $2M/year (just through rights sales - not counting subscriber revenue) - that's 10% of the WBUR budget. And at the time, WBUR was claiming that it was poised to break nationally in a huge way and quadruple that amount in the next several years - That's would have increased WBUR's revenue by a third!

    I can see why Lydon&Co felt they were due a piece of that action. Otoh, I can see why the mgmt was paranoid after letting Car Talk "get way", and WBUR General Mgr Jane Christo had a rep as a strong hand. She and Lydon at loggerheads was a recipe for disaster from the start.

    Unfortunately, although On Point is a decent show, it's not as consistently excellent as The Connection. And Christo, whatever her former successes, didn't leave WBUR better than she found it.

    Chris Lydon may be legitimately accused of being self-aggrandizing, but you'll note that when he left, a bunch of people left with him. When Christo left, she left alone.

    The Connection

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    was a great show and Christoher Lydon was great on it. It will be good to have him back on radio.

    I was a regular Connection listener....

    ...and when Lydon left during that contract dispute I immediately thought "wow...this guy is going to immediately cash in HUGE on for-profit talk radio."

    but he um, didn't. Still not sure why; almost everyone I knew in Boston listened to that show.

    Christopher Lydon

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    I agree. Mary McGrath and Chris Lydon were a brilliant team. My husband and I still miss that incarnation of The Connection. Lydon's intellectual versatility, his curious mind, and the incredible audience/community he created were really something! Great to hear him on the radio today -- along with the now famous Amber!

    WBUR doing it from the press releases fails.

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    WBUR could get a someone more knowledgeable and get rid of the other guy who does the call in shows merely from press releases without much of his own knowledge on a topic.

    More channels are available from local broadcasters with the new Hybrid Digital HD radios like at

    See also

    Christopher Lydon

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    When Ch. Lydon left and The Connection stopped, I felt as if I had lost my best friend. I was new in the country, alone at home with 2 little kids, and while I was doing my tedious housework , this wonderful world of ideas and intelligent conversations flodded in through the radio. Just hearing his voice was thrilling.
    And the huge amount of things that I learned listening to The Connection, and the sensitive way Ch.L. tuned in to his guests, and still got his own opinions in.....his program was my daily treat! So: Welcome back Christopher Lydon!