In his first official project after being abruptly ejected from mornings at KROQ-FM Los Angeles (106.7) in March, Kevin Ryder is launching a daily podcast and YouTube series that focuses on positive stories in the news. Ryder, who spent 30 years as half of the popular “Kevin & Bean” morning show on the iconic modern rocker, is paired with another KROQ alumnus, Mike Catherwood “Great News with Kevin and Mike” bows Jan. 4 as both a video series and an audio podcast.
“I really connect with those stories that there are still good people out there, and still doing good things, and if everybody was like that, this life would be a lot better,” Ryder tells Variety. “There are endless stories. You just have to look a little bit. It’s just such a difference from watching the news, reading Twitter, going on Instagram, it just seems like it’s much more needed right now. It’s just kind of a natural way to evolve for me.”
Catherwood was a board operator for “Kevin & Bean,” appeared regularly on the show and co-hosted “Loveline” with Dr. Drew Pinsky. The call-in sex and relationships show got its start on KROQ.
After Entercom fired Ryder and the rest of his morning crew in March, he remained under contract to the company until the end of November. “Kevin in the Morning with Allie & Jensen” never really had a chance to get off the ground following the exit of Gene “Bean” Baxter, who retired in November 2019 and moved to England. In a shakeup, “Kevin in the Morning” was replaced by “Stryker and Klein,” who moved from afternoons.
Baxter, who was born in the U.K., picked up a new gig there as the second of Podcast Radio’s “podjocks” — a cross between a DJ and announcer. Baxter and former “Kevin & Bean” cast member Allie Mac Kay now also host a three-times-a-week podcast on Patreon, “A Cup of Tea and a Chat.” In what Variety describes as “a bit of a ‘Kevin & Bean’ creative universe,” former “K&B” producer Dave Sanchez, imaging director Omar Khan and board op Jonny “Beer Mug” Kantrowe created the weekly show “Jankytown,” and former co-host Jensen Karp is also behind several podcasts. Another ex-“K&B” member, Ralph Garman, has hosted “The Ralph Report” on Patreon since 2018.
“When I was out of work, and I was just thinking about what to do, who I would want to do it with, I just thought Mike would be a perfect person for this project,” Ryder tells Variety. “He’s one of those few people that’s really funny but also a good guy. And a lot of times you have to pick between the two.”
Ryder is paying for the technical costs involved to create a produced TV show for YouTube and hopes one day to sell the show to a streaming service or a local TV station. He has set up his own company, I’m a Kid, and is writing a book about his story-rich three decades at KROQ. While he hasn’t ruled out working again with Baxter, he also makes it clear not to expect a reunion anytime soon. “I’m absolutely not against working with Bean again but I don’t think it’s for us right now,” he says. “And I think that’s okay because neither of us are upset about it, neither of us are angry at each other and neither of us are ruling out something in the future but for right now it’s just, I think, having more projects [for ‘Kevin & Bean’ fans] is better than fewer.”