Thursday, February 08, 2007

Poker Best of 2006 - Podcast

Better late than never, Chicago Poker Club announces the first of it's Poker Best of 2006 - Podcast.

- Ante Up!

Scott and Chris of TBT and the St. Petersburg Times turned in an impressive second year of effort to kill the competition and take their first Chicago Poker Club "Best Of" award. After showing in their first partial season of broadcast, second to the podcast that started it all, Card Club on Lord Admiral Radio, Ante Up extended the length of their broadcast, expanded their listener community, and bolstered their offerings with an online tournament series and even a small paraphernalia shop on CafePress.

With the departure of Lord Admiral mid-season, and the temporary loss, and successive re-invention of The Circuit (CardPlayer Magazine's poker podcast), Ante Up had a large void to fill. And fill it they did.

Ante Up produced a product to be respected by the online media and traditional broadcast community alike. Their approximately one-hour show treated loyalists to their goofy and entertaining banter, callbacks of inside jokes, and original poker content such as interviews, hand analyses, and strategy discussions. They rewarded their listener community with on-air plugs (and avoided asking us to "bang the boards"), active discussions on the online forum, and additional content on their highly-promoted blog. Ante Up shares a forum host with Chicago Poker Club on the network. This year they blew our discussion forum out, with over 4300 posts, to CPCs 2300.

Congratulations to Ante Up!

Most Improved

My Sport's Radio's All In Poker Podcast experienced a rejuvenation with the introduction of new talent, in host Jonathan Levy, or J-Lev. Brian Mollica, the show's originals host, moved on to new adventures, including hosting the weekday verson of TV's Ultimate Poker Challenge.

In the past, I've been particularly tough on Brian and the All In podcast. Brian, Jonathan, and other solo hosts deserve credit and respect for flying alone behind the mic, which puts them under a lot of pressure to be dynamic and "always on". Jonathan has done well taking over the reigns from Brian, but to be successful in my eyes, I believe the show needs to find a co-host that will compliment J Lev's style. I just don't love the topics enough to listen to one man speak for minutes on end.

Top Competition
Rounders: The Poker Show, featuring Adam Schwartz and Mike Johnson deserve mention here for a consistently good AM talk show, also distributed as a podcast. Adam and Mike often feature top interviews and strong poker discussion. Their style can leave a bit to be desired, as their delivery hearkens back to "old radio" (at least they come by it honestly), and I often feel uncomfortable after 10 minutes of show. Breathe, baby, breathe. Rounders recently launched their own online tournament series.

Chicago Jason and David Singer
The Circuit - Poker Radio, by CardPlayer Magazine took a hiatus this past year, as Scott Huff left for new pursuits. Gavin Smith and Joe Sebok opted not to carry on without him, leaving at the height of their game to focus on their real game. They were turning out an absolutely fantastic show, and on a frequent basis, prior to the hosts' departure. The podcast listeners of the world breathed a collective sigh of relief to learn that Mike Matusow would not be returning to host full-time, but merely make an occasional appearance on the new version of the show, host by Konan Luce, David Singer and Rich Belsky. It should come as no surprise that CardPlayer's production has the most up-to-date news and the consistently best interviewees. Time will tell how the new hosts pull together and what time of show they will produce on the long-term. The Circuit also has a regular home on Sirius satellite radio.