Ralph Barbieri, who has been at KNBR for 28 years, was fired yesterday in a cost-cutting move, station manager Lee Hammer told the Chronicle. His co-host of the 3-7 p.m. show “The Razor and Mr. T,” Tom Tolbert, will do the shift solo from now on.
The sports-talk station is owned by Cumulus Media, the same company that owns KGO 810 and fired most of its talk hosts in November. Barbieri, 66, revealed last year that he has Parkinson’s disease. Gary Radnich, the other big name at KNBR, is staying on. He just signed a new contract, according to media blogger Rich Lieberman.
- UPDATE, April 12, 5 p.m. The Chron’s Peter Hartlaub writes: “Ralph’s voice was actually one of my favorite attributes, because it was a reminder that you don’t have to be a Ken doll or sound like Morgan Freeman to make it here. This is the Bay Area, where we’re more concerned with what you have to say than how you look or sound saying it. CBS-5′s Dana King can let her hair go gray. Jon Miller can go on near-hallucinatory tangents during a Giants broadcast. And Barbieri, with that voice, could work 28 years in this market. I worry that his departure is a sign that something is changing.”