Radio & TV Talk

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2013 flashback: Mara Davis hosting 'Atlanta Eats' show on WGST

This was posted on the AJC Radio & TV Talk blog by Rodney Ho on September 6, 2013

Former Dave FM jock Mara Davis has landed her first radio gig since Dave FM died a year ago.

In May, she joinedSteak Shapiro's"Atlanta Eats"  weekly TV show on Peachtree TV. Now the brand has added a radio show on Saturday mornings on 640/WGST-AM.

The show will feature Davis' dishy approach she honed for 18 years at Z93 and Dave FM, which closed shop last fall for a sports talk station.

"Atlanta Eats" will debut Saturday, Sept. 21 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Producer Matt Edgar (formerly of 790/The Zone) has been teaching Davis the ropes about talk radio.

But really - talking about a topic for 8, 10, 12 minutes at a time? That's a piece of cake for Davis, who was increasingly restricted on music radio near the end of the her time at Dave.

"My whole career has been, 'Get back to the music! Get back to the music! You talk too much!' Finally, it's an opportunity to talk," she said in an interview today. "I can talk about a chicken wing for 30 minutes!"

During a test run of the "Atlanta Eats" radio show, "it went by so fast," Davis said. "We couldn't run out of things to talk about."

Cody Hicks, the Atlanta Eats day-to-day manager (who also once worked at the Zone), said "Mara was built for the talk format. She's super passionate about food. It's going to make really fun radio."

Each week will have a theme. The first show will focus on Atlanta's best dining neighborhoods. The next week will be barbecue. The show will be live and Davis will take calls.

"It's a dream come true," she said.

And so far, she has recorded eight stories for the TV show as well. "Every restaurant," she said, "tells a story. As I've said before, food is the new rock. People just love chefs."

WGST flipped to Hispanic sports talk a year ago, but that failed experiment quickly ended in early June with GST returning with no local voices on the weekdays. But the station is willing to fill weekends with local product.

While AM radio has been losing steam in recent years, WGST is available on the I Heart Radio app and the shows will be podcast and ready to go on the Atlanta Eats website.

Shapiro launched Atlanta Eats a year ago and has continued to build it even after losing his 790/The Zone job in June after that infamous Steve Gleasonbit.

Shapiro will make occasional appearances on the radio show. (His noncompete clause ends in less than two weeks.)

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About the Author

Rodney Ho covers radio and television for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.