Local radio war: Wild 94.1's Orlando and The Bone's Bubba the Love Sponge fight on air over Caylee Anthony song
When it comes to clashes between big radio personalities it's tough sometimes to tell the difference between staged confrontations for ratings and genuine fights over real arguments.
But this morning's emotional battle between two of the area's biggest radio personalities -- WLLD-FM's Orlando Davis (right) and WHPT-FM's Bubba the Love Sponge Clem -- sure sounded like a genuine, put-up-your-dukes fight.
The argument started as a conflict over an attention-getting song created by another personality who works for Davis' employer, CBS Radio.
Cledus T. Judd (left), the co-host of the morning show at WQYK-FM (99.5), penned a tune called She's Going Places (Caylee's Song) with Gary Levox of the hit country band Rascal Flatts, trying to draw attention to the deceased, 2-year-old daughter of acquitted murder suspect Casey Anthony.
The song has drawn lots of attention already, with more than 520,000 views on YouTube; versions of the song on iTunes and Amazon.com are now sold with proceeds going to Protect.org, a children's safety charity supported by HLN anchor (and outspoken Casey Anthony critic) Nancy Grace.
You can see Judd on HLN with Grace at 2:30 p.m. today, likely talking about the argument and the song's success.
Clem has criticized Judd's song as transparent attempt to earn ratings and attention from the highly publicized Anthony trial; Davis wrote an email to a co-host on Clem's show to complain. This morning, both hosts clashed in segments aired on both morning shows over who was in the right.
"You do everything for attention ... you're a hack," said Davis to Clem on air, unleashing a string of insults in which he accused the rival host of struggling to rescue a fading broadcast career by unfairly criticizing Judd. "You have ratings, but you're at the end of your run. You're a broke down Howard Stern."
Clem countered by alleging that Protect.org was a questionable charity, saying the organization's tax returns show a large percentage of donations it collects fund staff salaries. "First of all, you're a liar," Clem said, challenging Orlando's statements about dominating ratings in young listeners. "Play the song on your air and let your listeners decide how...cheesy it is."
After clashing on air, both hosts spent the rest of their shows dissecting the argument, with Clem simmering over criticism that he is racist, while Davis railed about the "sideways country bumpkin" he accused of lying on air. "We are not cool," Davis said on air, pushing aside the idea the fight might be ginned up for ratings.
Judd, who called into Davis' show after the argument ended, also said he was scheduled to appear on HLN at 2:30 p.m. today to talk about the song with Grace. He said producers on the TV show had asked for audio of the argument, so he expected the subject to come up.
Of course, such fights often help both hosts by sparking press coverage, galvanizing fans and inciting curious onlookers to check out the song and shows to see what all the fuss is about. And as the competition for ratings gets more intense locally, some hosts are pulling out old school techniques for gaining attention, including old fashioned radio wars.
So, regardless of whether their fight is genuine or even a little manufactured, each host could benefit from the friction.
Look below for audio provided by WLLD's website of the confrontation, along with audio provided by Bubba Clem and a YouTube video of the song.