Tag Archives: tony kornheiser

Pandora Plays Old Guy Radio


I wasn’t feeling it Wednesday when I got home and got ready for the afternoon run. Tuesday’s 6-miler tried to kill me, and while my knee was doing fine thanks to some icing and a few Aleve, I just had zero motivation to go.

But I’m trying for another triple-digit-mile month in July, and I’m already off to a slow start. I hit 100 or more miles in May and June for the first time in over a year, and going over the century mark is a big deal to me. I’m trying to keep it going, but thanks to a non-running trip to Atlanta to start the month, I’m way behind, so I gritted it out and ran.

Not far, 4 miles, but far enough to at least put up a respectable number in my running log.

As for the music, I’ve been doing mostly new-ish music in my Pandora stations, so I wanted to mix it up some today and go back to the oldies and listen to songs that were made before I was born. I am also missing the Tony Kornheiser Show podcast and his Old Guy Radio segments where he plays oldies music, so 60s, 70s and 80s Hits seemed appropriate.

My mom always listened to the oldies station in the car when we would drive to school, so none of the songs were “new” to me as I have a pretty broad ‘60s and ‘70s music knowledge. And I figured surely I wouldn’t get back-to-back playlist duds from Pandora, right?

You be the judge:


Beatles — “Here Comes The Sun”

There aren’t many other bands I’d rather start an oldies playlist with than the Beatles. And while the song isn’t fast and isn’t the most conducive to running motivation, it helped me connect with the outside world and the high heat outside.

Granted, I think a (voluntary) run in 95 degree heat probably isn’t what George Harrison was writing about or similar to the problems he faced at the time. (I’m not too keen on my Beatles knowledge, but I believe he quit the band before he wrote this song and John Lennon had been in a serious car crash around this time. Can anyone back me up on this?)

But it’s good to connect with nature and the outside environment to start the run. It brings you inner peace and happiness all over. (Who says I don’t love this sensitive shit?)

Song Energy: 3/10
Run Motivation: 5/10
Old Guy Radio Factor: 9/10
Overall: C


Creedence Clearwater Revival — Have You Ever Seen The Rain?”

Back-to-back weather-related songs. But the flow would have worked better if the rain song came first and was followed by “Here Comes The Sun.”


KC and the Sunshine Band — “Get Down Tonight”

Remember when I said that I associate oldies music to riding in my mom’s car on the way to school. Well, I also associate a lot of them with movies, in both and bad ways.

Like many, many, many ‘60s and ‘70s songs, “Forrest Gump” is the first thing that comes to my mind when I hear this song. It’s not necessarily a bad thing, but it’s not really a great thing either. There are many other better songs from “Forrest Gump” that I’d rather listen to.

Still, after the two previous slow songs, it was nice to hear something with some energy and excitement.

Song Energy: 7/10
Run Motivation: 6/10
Old Guy Radio Factor: 6/10
Overall: C


Kansas — “Dust in the Wing”

Another song associated with a movie. I will never hear this song and not think of Will Ferrell in “Old School.”


Van Morrison — “Brown Eyed Girl”

Finally a song I don’t associate with movies, but instead high school.

This song was a staple at every homecoming, prom, spring fling, Christmas dance I went to in high school. I went to those dances with the same group of about 12 guys and girls and every girl sang this song — except for the non-brown eyed girls. The blue-, green- and whatever else-eye-colored girls would sing their color. Actually, no, not sing. Scream as loud as 16 and 17-year-old girls can scream.

“Our hearts are thumping and you my BLUE!!!!! eyed girl. You’re my BLUE!!!!! eyed girl.”

Is this really necessary? I ask now because back then I didn’t want to get punched by asking my clearly discriminated female friends this question.

As for the run, it’s Van Morrison. How can you not love his music? It doesn’t have the high energy (again, it’s Van Morrison), but I still love his music.

Song Energy: 4/10
Run Motivation: 6/10
Old Guy Radio Factor: 6/10
Overall: B


Bob Seger — “Old Time Rock N’ Roll”

Oh look, another movie song.

Admittedly, I hadn’t seen “Risky Business” until about four years ago. I knew the general plot and of course knew the Tom Cruise underwear scene, but that was about it. One weekday night, Katie and I were sitting at home with nothing to do and decided to end that.

It’ll never top “Top Gun” as my No. 1 Tom Cruise film, but I did like it. I just wish I hadn’t been so late to the party on it, but to be fair, it did come out two months before I was even born.

As for the song, if Joel Goodsen can dance and play air guitar to it, then I can enjoy it on the run. Sometimes, you’ve just gotta say “What the fuck?”

Song Energy: 8/10
Run Motivation: 7/10
Old Guy Radio Factor: 2/10
Overall: B


The Foundations — “Build Me Up Buttercup”

Another movie song! Thank you, Ben Stiller, for ruining this song for me.


Queen — “We Will Rock You”

OK, you can’t get much better than this song to hear as you’re finishing any sort of athletic thing. Bravo, Pandora.


Natalie Cole — “This Will Be”

And then you do something like this? Are you kidding me, Pandora?

I’m running for crying out loud and you give me an eHarmony song as the final song? Screw you!

I actually got angry that this was the final song of the run. So angry that I started to run faster so I wouldn’t have to listen to it anymore. So in a way it worked, but not as it was intended to do.

No, I’m not looking for online dating, dating advice or my perfect match. I’m done with that, and thankfully, I’m done with this playlist.

Song Energy: 0/10
Run Motivation: 0/10
Old Guy Radio Factor: 1/10
Overall: F-


Overall, I think Pandora’s version of Old Guy Radio had some hits and misses — and one giant fuck up. But it did what I wanted it to do, and that was allow me to listen to songs I haven’t heard since I got my own car and stopped carpooling with my mom.


Filed under Pandora, Running

You’re Up, Pandora


The emergence of July is a welcomed mark for me. The year is halfway over, and if it’s been a particularly crappy year, well, you’re 50 percent done with it.

July marks the heart of summer, which will also soon end and make way for fall, cooler weather, my birthday and football.

July also brings America’s birthday. Happy birthday, USA, you beautiful nation you.

But alas, July can also be a cruel bitch as it means my favorite podcast — The Tony Kornheiser Show — goes on its summer hiatus and won’t return until Labor Day. Tony Kornheiser is a Washington, D.C.,-based sports writer, but his show covers so much more than just sports. I learn politics from Huffington Post’s Howard Fineman, movie review from the Washington Post’s Ann Hornaday, legal insight from America’s best white collar lawyer Abbe Lowell and, yes, sports from a slew of great sports writers. There’s even Reginald the Monkey making football picks against NFL hall of gamer Ron Jaworski.

I love to listen to the Tony Kornheiser podcast when I run. It makes the miles goes by so much faster, and on numerous occasions, I’ve had to stop running because I couldn’t stop laughing to the tales of a 60-something.



What am I to do now that Tony is gone? Well, in previous summers I would hit shuffle on the iPod and go. But, well, the iPod has had a couple of incidents recently, rendering it an electrical hazard when surrounded by sweat.

So now I turn to the iPhone and Pandora for savior. The goal (and we’ll see how long this will last) is to try a new Pandora station on every run and report back to what I heard, if it motivated me and what songs will remain find future homes in my iTunes.

So away we go. I have two months without Mr. Tony. I might as well make the best of it.

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Filed under Pandora, Running