We've lived in Utah, Nebraska, upper Michigan and now we've settled in Colorado...at least for now! Marley is 10, Isi is 6 and Enzo is 4.

Life is great!

Saturday, December 8, 2007

The Jimmy Chunga Show (What?!? What about Mister West?)

I'm so bummed!!!! Every morning I listen to The Chunga & Mister Show on 101.9 THE END. Well, Mister has been gone since Monday. They just keep saying "Mister has the day off." Turns out that upper management didn't renew his contract.

Jimmy Chunga and Mister West have been friends and associates for 20 years. They have been doing this morning show together for the past 7-8 years at least. When I moved to Utah in '99 it was the Chunga and Marcus show. Marcus got abruptly fired for doing something the station didn't agree with (he was kind of a rebel and an idiot)...that's all they said, no details but it seemed like a little scandle. Marcus shortly ended up on another radio station...I can't remember which one, and I'm not sure if he is still on.

I have always thought that Chunga and Mister balanced each other out so well...and represented Utahns in the Salt Lake and Utah Valleys. Chunga runs the show and is a very funny aspiring actor. He can do A LOT of really good impressions of people and characters. Chunga gets inappropriate sometimes and (by good assumption) he was raised LDS but, is not active. He knows EVERYTHING about the culture and is far from anti. Mister is a journalist and reported on the Top News Stories and Hollywood Headlines. He also reported on the Really Stupid News. Mister is an active member of the church and was pretty good at letting Chunga be funny and even laughing with him...but, was good at moving on when he was getting out of hand. They are kind of the odd couple. Crazy zanny free spirit and a straight arrow.

I got my mom hooked on Chunga and Mister when I carpooled to BYU with her. She didn't like it at first, but it didn't take long for her to LOVE IT! I'm not even exagerating. She still listens even when I'm not in the car. Then when they said they were going to finally explain where Mister has been (because listeners were getting suspicious) my mom WAITED IN THE CAR even after she got to work to find out. Then she said she wanted to cry! I wanted to cry too. My mom was going to email me right way about this, but when she opened her email...I had already emailed her to tell her the news.

I had also emailed my husband about it. His response was, "I don't think I could care less. I'm not really a talk show person." I knew that but, I responded by saying, "I know. I just thought you should know why your wife is suddenly so depressed." It was sad and the feeling was similar to, if my own husband got layed off! What is Mister going to do?

Well, I've given it some thought. They didn't give much details, of course. It's an internal matter and the station would probably like to keep it that way. But, Chunga said that though he is VERY sad that Mister is now longer with him on the show, there are no black cats in this situation, which sounds like the station may have offered Mister a new contract and Mister, for whatever reason, didn't accept it. Maybe he wanted more money. Maybe he just doesn't want to do the show anymore...he teaches the Deacons on Sunday. Maybe he wants to get back into doing real news and journalism.

I like to think it was Mister's decision to leave for all of above listed reasons and more. Chunga illuded to the fact that the station probably gave him compensation...a lot of people that called in were upset that the station would do this right in the midst of the holidays. Heck, if the station gave him compensation and he gets to spend more time with his family for the holidays...it's a blessing. Even though I don't think he was away from his family all that much.

And the show goes on. I'm scared for who will replace him. If it's someone annoying or stupid or TOTALLY inappropraite...despite how much I like Chunga, I won't listen. I'm coping. There is still the question...why mess with a good thing? Which once again leads me to think that it was Mister's choice to move on.


Divegirl said...

I too (along with my hubby & kids) are BIG listeners of the show! My children have practically grown up with Chunga and Mister! Every day before school while eating breakfast, Chunga and Mister joined us in the kitchen! They were a fabulous team and why management did not recognize this is beyond me! Why ruin a good thing? Together they were like the family we never met!

I'm sure that Chunga has to be VERY careful what he says on air. He also has to be so frustrated! Chunga has signed on for another three years with the station. It makes me wonder if he even knew he'd be without Mister when he signed?

Either way, I am sad that none of us (as fans) got a chance to say goodbye to Mister - to tell him how funny he was or how much he made us laugh each morning! He was just as much a part of the show as Chunga. Instead, he mysteriously does not return on the air and the management leaves it up to the listeners to finally start wondering!

I gave it some thought and I, too, wonder if Mister decided not to come back. I wonder if it came down to money? If I were anyone else (Chelsea, Cort....) I'd be walking on eggshells!

The show itself will never be the same. I have struggled to listen to it this week (knowing Mister is REALLY gone and not on vacation) and even though I am a huge CHUNGA fun, I don't know if I can accept the next sidekick they hire. If they tried to it would be copying the show or trying for the same format or feel. And that's the thing I'm having a hard time accepting - the same format without Mister! It's almost like they will have to change the whole show to make it new because it's certainly not going to be how it was...

Anyone else have a take on this? Please share if you do!

And Mister, if you are out there, whether you finally decided it was time to go or they let you go, please know you were fabulous and we loved every minute!

Julie J. said...

Mister will be missed and I too am having a struggle in wanting to continue listening.... Of course I want to continue, but I want it to be like it was.

And who is this divegirl....Could you identify yourself, please?

Divegirl said...

Hi Julie J. This is the very first blog in which I have ever responded. I typically just read the blogging out there on the web but never put in my two cents worth. Because it was about Chunga and Mister West I just had to say SOMETHING! I noticed that the site didn't allow anonymous comments, so I had to create an account/profile on myself. I randomly found 'farmer frietas' wife' by searching from google by typing the words: Where is Mister West? Sooo, this kind of stuff is new to me (personally posting blogs and comments). Anyway, thanks for reading.

Julie J. said...

That's awesome, divegirl. You have good thoughts and obviously think the same way my sister and I do. You should fill out the profile and start your own blog so that we can get to know you. I was a blog lurker for two years before I started my blog last month. It has been so fun.

Becky said...

divegirl! That is so awesome that you found my blog. I started this blog about a month ago, as my sister Julie has mentioned. It's fun! Especially now that someone I don't even know has commented! It was a great comment too! I agree, I hope they change the whole show because it's not going to be the same without Mister. But, I hope they change it in a way isn't TOTALLY different...it's gotta be good...and funny!
You should start your own blog! I'd love to get to know you.

ibrokemyguitar said...

As a side note...I grew up in the same ward as "Jimmy Chunga" (real name Brett Smith) in Taylorsville, Utah. His parents still sometimes go to church, but not often. He was active until he was about 17 or 18. I was in young men/scouts with him and saw him bless the sacrament a bunch of times (GASP!) He was the same loud, obnixious person in jr. high and high school as he is now. But in high school he was VERY skinny.

I was very sad to hear about Mister. Thanks to your little blog here, I finally know what happened! So thank you. I am not sure if I will continue to listen to the show or not. If they put that Parker guy on there, I'm history. That guy seriously needs to lay off the caffeine.

KordelandHeather said...

Oh Becky! Thanks for posting, I did not now because I haven't been listening lately, but oh so sad! I've been listening to Chunga and Mister for I don't know how long. Kordel is going to be sad too! Who would ever want to commute in the mornings without them?

sandra said...

Our whole family is so sad about mister. We loved his laugh and stupid news. We'll miss him on our commute.

Divegirl said...

Thanks Becky and Julie! It's been fun reading your comments. You gals are so nice. Glad to know I have friends out there!

It's been a long week already on 1019 the end. I'm not trying to beat a dead horse but the show has lost something (mister)! I have really tried to listen and like it but I just don't! Maybe I'm just mad right now so it makes it worse to listen to the show? It's not nearly as funny and I long for Mister's laugh! The guy that came on yesterday after Chunga in the AM (I listened in my car a little while Christmas shopping) sounded REALLY new to radio. He didn't even pronounce Enya's name right! Anyway, I found out that with my XMRADIO contract I have in my car, I can pull the radio through my computer as well for free with my account. It's been nice to listen to whatever music I feel like listening to without commercials and annoying adds! Maybe this is my way of escaping the 1019 the end disaster!?

That is my venting for the day. If anyone knows where we can find Mister please let us know! He deserves to hear from his fans. I know he has a ton of them.

Also, I did hear that he went back to the Deseret News. Don't know if that is true...also, on this same site I was reading about Mister going back to the DN, two different employees of Citadel Broadcasting had contrasting views on Mister West. One said he was the nice guy in radio and did not deserve what happened, that it all came down to $$$ and that Chunga kept asking for more and more for 4 hours of work a day. The other person said that Mister West was very difficult to work with and employees at citadel were relieved that the contract wasn't renewed. I don't know how much I believe that??! It seems that between the two of them Chunga would be more $$$ hungry and have the power to ask for it. Any thoughts? How are you all surviving without the Chunga and Mister show? Any other radio morning shows (dare I say) out there worth listening to? Do tell!

Have a great day.

Becky said...

Thanks for all the cool comments! I never thought this post would be so popular.

Divegirl - I still like the show. I think Chelsea is funny, especially how she just makes everything up as she goes along, for the birthday game. I think Cort does a good job too. I think it's funny that Chunga is trying to quit swearing and is stuck in a $10,000 bet. I think it's hilarious that a listener called in and totally tricked him into swearing...it was hilarious!!! (but it didn't count...they gave him grace) I agree with you though...after the Jimmy Chunga show...I don't listen to Grant, the afternoon guy...he might grow on me...but, I doubt it if I never give him a chance. I really didn't like Parker at first.....but....NO! I still don't like Parker...but, I don't hate him and think he is ruining the station...like some "what's happening hotstuff" callers do.

But, I still miss Mister and wonder where he is and what he is doing.

I feel like it's just different.

I think you are right about Chunga asking for more money and getting it. But, if you think about it...Chunga is a lot more appealing, especially (I'm sure) to a radio exec. He has multiple entertaining talents. Whereas Mister was (as mentioned above in your comment)just "the nice guy in radio." He did the news...and the way the radio execs probably see it...anyone can read the news. In a way they are right.

It's an unfortunate situation...probably mostly for the listeners.

Divegirl said...

Hi Becky! I couldn't agree with you more on your thoughts with Chunga's appeal to the BIG WIGS.

I was comforted today that a lot of the 'hot stuff' callers actually got through to say they missed Mister! One guy even asked who he could call or email to complain about the situation. The caller said that we're the listeners and we should have a say. Chunga told him it wouldn't matter or make a difference because they are owned by the 3rd largest broadcasting company in America and they do whatever they want.

I think it's sad for Chunga and the gang that they really can't say what they think. It bugs me that every day they have to act like nothing happened and no one disappeared. Obviously I understand why they do this on the radio, but it's sad that the people that worked with him can't tell the fans what is going on truthfully. Chunga has got to be going crazy. It would be hard to lose your sidekick after all these years and have to carry the show without him. The spark that they had as a team on the show is not there now that is for sure!

Don't mean to keep dragging this on but those are my thoughts today. Have a good one!

Divegirl said...

PS: Look up this link. This is a good place to send a boycott email and support to Mister. People here are really voicing their opinions like us!


Dave Cebrowski (aka DCWAVE) said...

Don't believe for a second that Chunga did NOT have a say in where Casey or Mister or Steve Oldfield ended up. Chunga has a lot of say about it - he started the The End, was a principle of the end until Citidel bought them. He is their only talent in this market and has a say in who is on his show.

Having worked with both The End and citadel in the past I can tell you that those who are no longer there (everyone but Chunga, Cort, Chelsea and Parker) are better off.

Darci said...

Interesting reading everyone's comments....thought I would just put in my thoughts....

I was KJQ --> X96 --> The End junkie....and then I moved away from the SLC area in 1999. I moved back a couple of years ago and was REALLY excited to get back to a place with a great radio station! It took me a few months to come to the realization that morning show on The End had actually turned into the "Let's all bow down to Chunga" show. I couldn't believe how arrogant he had become! At times I was embarrassed for him! Talking about all of his movies (yeah, I'm not so impressed....) and always chatting up SoCal and Hollywood like it's so cool and glamorous. PLEASE! I lived in "SoCal" for 6 years...and it's really not that big of a deal. Yeah, you see famous people sometimes. Who cares! Chunga just loves to name drop and talk about HIMSELF constantly! I got SO sick of him interrupting Mister ALL THE TIME to talk about HIMSELF! He is such a narcisist! He complains all the time about his job and radio in general and he has made it really clear that he is just biding his time doing this lame radio show (and putting ZERO effort into it) until he becomes an "A-List" celebrity! Yeah...you keep working on that Chunga! Lipo, nose jobs and Porches don't make you a better man!

He's really a been a disappointment. I actually miss my radio station in SoCal...I didn't really like the music, but I liked the people....because they liked the listeners more than themselves!

Thanks for letting me vent!

jackiej said...

Thanks for this post, Becky, and everyone for their comments. I'm kind of relieved to have a place to process this with other people. I thought the loss of Casey a few years back was a slap in the face, but this is way worse. I understand that things happen, and sometimes these things may even be for the best - heck, for all I know Mister West is much happier. But to not allow Mister to say goodbye and go on as though everything is ok is to both downplay his extremely important contribution to the show and the listeners' attachment to him as an integral part of the show.

Like Divegirl, I've tried to not let my disappointment completely cloud my feelings and try to listen anyway. But I honestly don't like it as much. Without Mister to balance Chunga's sometimes overweaning ego with his down-to-earth, sometimes corny-but-wise self, it's just... not as good. I'm sure they have to keep going on, but even though Cort does as good a job as he can with the stupid news and hollywood news and such, it's just not the same. I miss their interplay and I don't know that I'll get used to things this way.

Having said...

I used to love the morning show with Chunga and mister. However, I can honestly say that I don't listen to it all anymore. I've kind of just moved on. It really isn't the same and I have to agree that Chunga has really lost his appeal. He just seems like doing radio is such a chore. I just couldn't listen to that type of attitude anymore.

As far as Parker is concerned... that guy tries a bit too hard. I just can't get with him. I've given him multiple chances but it just doesn't work for me. I'm super sad to say it, but I've moved on. Bummer.

Becky said...

I can't believe this is still going and with new commenters and everything!

I haven't moved on from THE END. But, I haven't been listening much this week...it's just Chelsea and Cort. I was amazed though that they got to interview Nicholas Cage. And they did a pretty good job too! I was surprised.

I too wish they could have given us a chance to say goodbye to Mister. Chunga talked about his stupid contract renewal (which he claims he hates talking about) and tons of people called in and said they were so glad that he signed on for another 3 years. Don't get me wrong...I still like Chunga...I'm not totally turned off by him yet. But, they could have told us like a week of two before Mister left so we could call in and tell him we are going to miss him and wish him well.

With most companies I've worked for in the past...if someone has worked there more than a year or so they have a little party or something and this seems to give all parties involved some closure.

It's still weird to me that he was just gone all of the sudden and nothing was told to the listeners until the listeners asked!

Divegirl said...

Hi all & Becky! I've enjoyed monitoring all the comments and thoughts. THANKS to everyone out there that has been sharing what they think! It's amazing how much the show REALLY has changed. I have given it my best to listen and enjoy it but I just don't. On the other hand, I don't really know where to turn or listen now (except for XM radio from time to time). The X96 show is a little over-the-top for me. I'm a lost radio listener I guess. Anyone else out there feel the same way? I don't enjoy the show like I used to anymore. It's boring. Chunga doesn't seem as funny and the antics don't work very well with Cort and Chelsea at his side.

I did hear the Nicolas Cage interview (they get a certain amount of interviews through Citadel yearly and the movie stars contract out for promos to their movies) and although they did the interview, Chelsea bugged me with her "Can I call you, Nicky" comment right off the bat. She just strikes me as a little unprofessional, immature and a wanna-be like she has been doing this for years and years (NOT)! Granted Chunga was gone for this interview (on vacation) so he wasn't there to take control.

I agree with Jackie when she said how they 'downplayed Mister's contribution to the show'. Maybe Mister will show up on the radio in the next few months? Maybe he's having a great time now off-the-air and exploring other interests or opportunites? In any event, the show has changed for the worse. I am a frustrated listener who feels loyal to the station but with the way things have been going I don't know if I can hang on any longer.

KCGLFreeRadio said...

I've been cross posting this on multiple sites for a week or so, sorry for those who have already read it:

If Parker's arrival to 101.9 The End was the death knell for the station, then the letting go of Mister West is undeniably the confirmation of it. For those of us that listen between the lines, we saw it coming on one of Parker’s first days on the air when he started trashing Artie. Not cool flit boy, not cool…

Change is inevitable, but this one hurts, and it is very significant when looking at the history of SLC alternative music stations. Salt Lake City has always had an unusually large group of alternative music lovers for a city that has typically been behind the times in other things. Mr. West has been an integral part of this history. I've listened to every permutation of this station since the KCGL days. KCGL, KRP, KRPN, KJQ, X96. I was at the Berlin concert the day KCGL died and Biff and the DJs got on the stage to say they'd be back. This was back when 99% of the world hadn’t heard of U2, and the word “alternative” hadn’t been coined to describe our music – New Order, The Cure, Depeche Mode, Joy Division, Thompson Twins, Yaz. I remember being crouched over the radio on Sunday nights when they could only afford a few hours of air time in the evening on some random station. But eventually, when the rest of the world clued in and alternative music became not so alternative, a lot of the core people came back and prospered. Infighting, feuds, and competing stations aside, there is a core group of people gave us music that for a number of years you couldn’t find in any store. Many of these core people have faded into different markets/professions, but some have continued to exist (at least up until recently) at 101.9 The End and X96. No station has ever lived up to KCGL standards, but then again, who could? The bar was set pretty high because the commercials were few and the DJs were playing the music they loved. They were gods to us; it was real radio. But you've got to make money to stay in the game, right?

Mr. West, you are missed. Together, you and Chunga had at times wit and timing that could make me laugh out loud. The Saturday Night Cold Case days were some of the best radio I've ever heard. We were always listening to you when we were out on the town. It was as good as Bill and Kerry's original KJQ morning show when Brett (Chunga) was their lackey. No wonder he has such an inferiority complex going. Unfortunately, without you, Chunga's act is weak, repetitive, juvenile and boring. He's just not funny anymore. I find his unfounded arrogance and name dropping too much to bear without you to balance it out like only you can. His acting is laughable (good luck with that endeavor there Brett, maybe you'll land a gig at a nice dinner theater somewhere if you really focus your boundless talent) and his lack of sincere self-deprecation in the face of his arrogance is his undoing. Unfortunately guys, my kids and I had to stop listening to you months ago when Chelsea started chiming in. She's a disgusting excuse for a woman and is witless. Chelsea, if are reading this, if you can in fact read, go DJ at a strip club where you belong. Actually, you and I both know you're not even qualified for that. I've started to listen to X96 exclusively now instead of switching back and forth during commercials. Gina, Bill, Kerry, thanks for letting me listen.

Parker, I find it hard to even waste my breath on you. Your ignorance and disrespect for the unique culture and history of SLC alternative music listeners is unforgivable. Will you please just run the station into the ground as quickly as possible so SLC can be done with you? Artie is 10 times the DJ and talent you'll ever be, because you're a no talent poseur. Artie, I'm sorry about your Mom my friend. May she rest in peace.

Mr., is there bad blood between you and x96, or could you maybe land a gig over there? Todd, Kerry, Bill, anyone listening over there? Isn't there a job over there for Mr. West?

I suggest that rather than anyone wasting time on an email campaign aimed at 101.9 that will fall on deaf ears on a sinking ship, maybe we can appeal to X96 to carve out a niche for one of their own. Anyone agree?

shea710 said...

I'm a blogger lurker and this is my first comment ever. I too am feeling the loss of my favorite morning show team. Mister totally balanced Chunga's huge ego. Chunga was best when he was being funny. But every time he went off on something or started bragging how great he is, I wanted to throw up. I thought the loss of Biff Raff in the afternoon was bad enough. Parker had already completely ruined my afternoon listening. (I actually started listening to KSL!) But to lose Mister feels like I've lost a friend. I fell for Chunga's lies that it was all management. But I heard from someone who knows Mister that it was all Chunga's idea! Management planned to renew the contract, but Chunga wanted the change. He plays the innocent cause he knows it makes him look like an ass. What a two-faced back stabber! How could he do that to his friend? They said Mister was totally shocked by it. He loved the End and would never have left. No severance or explanation. Nice station. I'm not listening ever again. Thanks for letting me grieve and vent!

Having said...

BTW, what happened to lil Stevie Olfied? Did he suffer the same fate as Mr. West??

Arrrgaaa said...

Here is a web site that gives Mister West point of view.
Its sad.

Arrrgaaa said...

Here is the full site link.

jimwehde said...

I have to chime in here.

I spent 11 years in Salt Lake, from 1994-2005, and felt like Chunga and Marcus/then Mister were friends who rode to work with me. I listened to them from day #1.

When I came back to visit this year, and found the country station at 107.5, I made a mental note to find Chunga.

What everyone is saying here is so depressing - Chunga thinks he's good enough on his own. WRONG - you definitely need a straight man for your type of humor, Chunga. Get smart about this and listen to these people!

So much change is happening in SLC, I look for an anchor when I come back...one less anchor is available. Bummer.

APaulC said...

I got upset when they didn't renew Casey's contract and they did the same thing, then Chunga blamed management. I stopped listening and then earlier this year I heard Bushman on a station in St. George. I eventually was pulled back because of the music, but will not listen to the morning show anymore as Mr West isn't there.

Anonymous said...

Guess Mister West is getting the LAST LAUGH!
Hosta la Vista, Chunga Baby!
Good riddence to stinky rubbage!
Haven't listened once in 3 years since Citadel & Chunga fired the Mister.

Hey, I know... Chunga, why don't you rush out and make another Blockbuster like, 'Church Ball' while you're looking for a new job. Idiot.