Chicago podcasters skyrocket from Q101 to Howard 101

Radio Hall of Famer Howard Stern is more than just the King of All Media. He’s also a kingmaker.

Four goofy guys from Chicago owe their national radio success to Stern, who plucked them from obscurity and gave them a shot on Sirius/XM Satellite Radio.

The Abe Kanan Show began two years ago as a podcast featuring three Q101 alums — Abe Kanan, Ryan Manno and Dan “Bass” Levy — and Kanan’s brother, Sam. It’s billed as a “fast-paced, topical blend of pop culture, current events, comedy, sports and entertainment — unconventional, unfiltered, uncensored.”

Of everyone they approached, only Stern was willing to give them a shot. A three-night tryout led to a Saturday afternoon show. As of this week, the show has been extended yet again — airing live from 7 to 10pm Thursdays and Fridays on Howard 101.

“We went from three out-of-work radio guys and one guy who's never worked in radio before to being on one of the biggest stations in the world, and working for one of the biggest radio icons of all time,” Levy told me. “I’m not sure if going from podcast to full-blown radio show will be how radio transitions in the future, but from telling others and students that I meet, it's pretty inspirational.”


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Laura Baginski, Editor (@TimeOutChicago)