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THEY HEARD THE NEWS TODAY, OH BOY FANS HUNGRY FOR MORE `BREAKFAST'.

Byline: Glenn Whipp Staff Writer

One week after ``Breakfast With the Beatles'' host Chris Carter announced that the 10 a.m. Sunday program would end a 23-year run with its Sept. 3 broadcast, he still doesn't know what Beatles song might cap the final show.

Will it be George's Harrison's elegiac ``All Things Must Pass''? Or the determined melancholia of ``I'll Be Back''?

``I don't know what's going to happen,'' Carter says from his Sherman Oaks home. ``All I know is I have the best job in the world. And a couple of weeks from now, it's going to be gone.''

Not if the show's fans have anything to say about it. Minutes after Carter read the news that day (oh boy) on KLSX-FM (97.1), he got a call from a Web page designer who put together a site, www.savebreakfastwiththebeatles.com, that received more than 1,500 hits in its first three days.

KLSX program director Jack Silver has been besieged with phone calls and e-mails (the numbers and addresses are on the aforementioned Web site) this week -- but he hasn't changed his mind.

Beginning Sept. 10, KLSX will be running infomercials and broadcasts of random NFL football games in the Sunday morning ``Breakfast With the Beatles'' slot, ignoring ratings (football draws a third of the listeners but more revenue from ads) and listeners' pleas.

``It's always tough to make these decisions, but we are an FM talk-radio station, and `Breakfast With the Beatles' is our last non-spoken-word show,'' Silver says. ``We're doing our best to find a home for the show.''

Silver's best -- which includes a possible move to Sunday nights during football season or a return in January -- isn't good enough for the show's longtime supporters, who include Creative Artists Agency president Richard Lovett, musician Steve Van Zandt, actors Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson, filmmaker Cameron Crowe and the two surviving Beatles -- Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr -- both of whom have called the program during Carter's five years hosting the show.

``You can't cancel the show now -- the Beatles themselves have started calling in for interviews,'' Crowe says. ``I loved what Chris did with the program. Over the years, this guy turned the show from a Sunday morning appetizer into a hot-house lab for Beatle passion, Beatle rarities, way-inside Beatle news, brilliant set-lists and a place where music fandom in general could flourish.''

Carter took over ``Breakfast'' after the show's founder, disc jockey Deirdre O'Donoghue, died in 2001. The lovely O'Donoghue, who started the program on KMET-FM in 1983, was a huge on-air presence, equally passionate about the Beatles and the listeners who loved the band.

Carter, though, added to her legacy, building the program around carefully planned set lists that manage to illuminate songs we've all heard hundreds of times. The fact that he owns -- and plays -- one of the most extensive collections of Beatles rarities and unreleased songs doesn't hurt, either.

``There's the long-standing idea that a monkey could host a Beatles show because the songs are all good. But I've tried to take it up a few notches. I love putting a great set together and sharing it with an audience,'' he says.

After Carter announced the show's demise Sunday, he played ``Apple Scruffs,'' ``Heaven on a Sunday,'' ``The Long and Winding Road'' and ``We Can Work It Out.'' After a commercial break, he came back with Badfinger's ``Come and Get It'' (a Lennon-McCartney tune) and ``Lovely Rita,'' a not-so-subtle shout-out to KLOS-FM program director Rita Wilde. Carter remains hopeful that the classic rock station might pick up ``Breakfast With the Beatles'' on Sunday mornings.

Wilde says she's open to the idea. ``I love the show and hope to find a place on the station for it,'' she says. ``I really hope we can do it.''

Says Crowe: ``There's got to be enough bandwidth in the world for `Breakfast With the Beatles.' Frankly, if I had a station, I'd make him stay an extra two hours and do `Breakfast With Bowie,' too.''

Glenn Whipp, (818) 713-3672.

glenn.whipp(at)dailynews.com

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``I don't know what's going to happen. All I know is I have the best job in the world. And a couple of weeks from now, it's going to be gone,'' says Chris Carter, host of ``Breakfast With the Beatles.''

Gus Ruelas/Staff Photographer

Box:

Chris Carter's fab faves (see text)

- G.W.
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Publication:Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
Date:Aug 13, 2006
Words:736
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