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Glenn Hollis Is Back

Glenn Hollis, the longtime evening voice of the Washington area's lovelorn and love-smitten, is returning to the airwaves after a two-year absence. But while WASH-FM (97.1) is putting Hollis back on its air, this won't be the old "After Hours" show of love songs and dedications. Rather, Hollis, who has spent his radio exile starting up a picture framing shop in Frederick with his wife, Irene, is hosting the station's new Sunday morning jazz brunch show, which airs from 8 a.m. to noon.

(And watch the labeling on that show--it's not real jazz, but the "smooth" stuff that vanished from the local airwaves when WJZW (105.9) died earlier this year.)

Is this a sign that local radio stations are finally waking up to the idea that it's all about personalities and the kind of added value that automated Internet radio stations cannot provide? Well, it would be nice to believe that, but probably not. Yes, it's good to return a well-known voice and personality to the local radio dial, and Hollis's gentle, friendly manner won him many friends over his 12-year run on the station, but so far, there's not nearly enough evidence to support the idea that this is a trend of any sort.

WASH replaced Hollis in 2006 with the nationally syndicated "Delilah," a program of light pop and love stories that, as I wrote a couple of years ago, bears a superficial resemblance to the Hollis broadcast, but which takes you down a different aisle in the greeting-cards store. Delilah Luke -- on the radio, she has but one name -- offers a show that matches up to the cards found under the big, calming sign that reads, "Inspirational." Ugh.

By Marc Fisher |  April 22, 2008; 1:15 PM ET
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I was anti-"Delilah" when she replaced Hollis, but the few times I've listened -- I'm a married guy, no longer a lovelorn single -- I've been slightly impressed. I have to admit that she's pretty good. Plus, Glenn's reading of poetry snippets had worn thin before his ouster, I thought.

I'm glad he's back, although I don't listen to the radio much on Sunday mornings.

Posted by: Discman | April 22, 2008 2:32 PM

Wow - it's been two years since he stopped doing After Hours?

Posted by: Betty | April 22, 2008 3:42 PM

I had the chance to catch Delilah several times while moving across the country and back a few years ago. I found her style fine, until she broke into sermons. I'll never forget driving through New Mexico bouncing along to a song that was playing, then having her break into the song to tell her listeners that God is watching them tonight went on to quote scripture for at least 10 minutes (I shut it off after that, but when I scanned back 15 minutes later she was still going).

Her ability to kill the mood by playing a couple of good, upbeat songs, then coming back to tell me the gory details about a high school love who was taken away too early, then playing something so slow that time stopped, is uncanny. I don't know how she stays on the air by taking the mood down to depression, she depressed me.

Bring back Glenn, enough with syndication, get more "home-town" atmosphere on the radio.

Posted by: Jarrod | April 23, 2008 10:13 AM

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