The Free Beer and Hot Wings Show

The Free Beer and Hot Wings Show
The Free Beer and Hot Wings Show
Other names The Free Beer and Hot Wings Morning Show
Genre Humor, Talk radio
Running time 5:00 - 10:15 EST (in Grand Rapids)
5:00 - 10:00 EST (syndicated stations)[1]
Country United States
Languages English
Home station WGRD-FM
Starring Gregg "Free Beer" Daniels
Chris "Hot Wings" Michaels
Eric "Zane" Zeitunian
"Producer" Joseph Gasmann Jr.
Assistant Producer Steve McKiernan
Air dates since 2004-06-14[2]
Podcast Official podcast

'The Free Beer and Hot Wings (Morning) Show' is a syndicated talk radio show based at WGRD-FM in Grand Rapids, Michigan. The show is hosted by Gregg "Free Beer" Daniels and Chris "Hot Wings" Michaels with Eric "Zane" Zeitunian, "Producer" Joseph Gasmann, Jr, Assistant Producer Steve McKiernan, and Robot. The show is syndicated mostly throughout the Midwest and Eastern United States. The show is distributed by Compass Media Networks.

The Free Beer and Hot Wings Show has also been guest hosts on The Dan Patrick Show on multiple occasions.[3]



The Free Beer & Hot Wings Show began as an afternoon show in Council Bluffs, Iowa (within the Omaha metropolitan area) at non-commercial station KIWR in March 1997. The Show consisted of two former Central Michigan University roommates, who eventually moved to mornings several months later where they remained until the summer of 2000, when they moved to WBON in Knoxville, TN. It was there that they met the show’s eventual 3rd member and fellow CMU grad, Eric "Zane" Zeitunian, who was, at the time, their direct competitor at WIMZ. When Zane was fired, he immediately drove across town, and joined The Free Beer & Hot Wings Show. The show then moved to New Jersey, where they were on WTHK in Trenton and WCHR on the Jersey Shore. The Free Beer & Hot Wings Show began full syndication in 2004 with the move to WGRD in Grand Rapids, Michigan and began syndicating to WTHK and WCHR. The show is now heard on 20+ radio stations.

Origin of names

The names "Free Beer" and "Hot Wings" were chosen by the hosts as "just stupid names that were easy to remember" early in their career, when they never really thought the show would last long. The guys have stated numerous times that they realize the names are not clever, but as of now, it's too late to change them. Since Eric Zane joined the show later, he does not have a "dumb food name", as stated by Free Beer.

Show Segments

Free Beer & Hot Wings Show Segments
Segment Description Times
The Free Beer & Hot Wings Report Biggest news stories of the day are discussed Daily
Can't Wait To Talk About Blank Listeners can call in and discuss any topic with the guys Daily
Flashback A look-back on a funny segment from the past Daily
What Hot Wings Thinks Hot Wings provides his own commentary about current topics Daily
Dumber Than Zane Trivia Listeners get their chance to call in and face Zane in a game of trivia. Sponsored by Cat Footwear Thursdays
Name That Blank Game where listeners compete against each other with questions that encourages them to "name that ____" of audio clips Fridays
Sounds of the Game A collection of soundbites from college and pro football that, when taken out of context, sound dirty Weekly during the football season
Dude Shadoway The guys invite their esteemed colleague/legendary radio DJ Dude Shadoway in to do an interview with "flash from the past" celebrities and current events heroes rarely
What Can Joe Do? Producer Joe performs a stunt, and if he's lucky, for money Once in a while
Paired With An Idiot Listeners are paired with the hosts in a game similar to Pyramid Once in a while
Intern-view A show intern conducts an interview. But here, the intern is set up to fail. The intern is told only moments before that they will be doing an interview and given minimal info about the interviewee. Once in a while
OCTOSMASH A parody game of "crazy morning zoo" radio shows, where eight different songs are played simultaneously and listeners must identify each level. Once in a while

Charity work

In 2006, Eric Zane was approached by a former teacher of one of his children to raise money for the Ataxia-Telangiectasia Children's Project. The teacher has two children who have this disease and told Zane that they needed money for a clinical trial. Zane took the quest to the listeners and the radio show managed to raise $65,000, more than enough money to cover the trial.[4] Zane also followed through with his part of the deal, running the Detroit Marathon and getting the infamous Mr. 10 tattoo.

In 2007, Zane asked for volunteers to join the A-T Army, which was the radio show’s team in the 2008 Walt Disney World Marathon. Each member was asked to raise money and take part in the A-T Children’s Project’s events that weekend. Over forty people signed up and raised almost $50,000. Zane recently participated in the 2009 half-marathon. While in Florida for the event, he presented the A-T Children's Project with a check for that amount. In 2009 Zane also participated in a triathlon for A-T, asking listeners to donate money for every minute he raced. Throughout the race Zane pulled/pushed a listener's daughter that suffers from A-T and the race was completed in just over 2 hours, raising nearly $75,000 for the charity.

Holiday Break-in

Each December, the show solicits the nomination by their listeners of needy families to be the recipients of the Holiday Break-in for those unable to buy holiday gifts. Once the recipients are selected, participating radio affiliates break-in to the houses of these families (with the assistance of the nominator, a locksmith, and local police) and bring the holidays where there would be none.[5] They decorate and leave presents - in the past, the gifts have included toys for the children, gift cards, paid rent, appliances, and cars. A few of the break-ins occur on the air - most do not. No notification is left as to who the gifts came from; the recipients rarely determine who was responsible for the seemingly random act of charity.

Inspired by the work done by the show, in 2008 local high schools in West Michigan began conducting their own break-ins for needy families. In 2009, representatives of each school appeared on the show and shared stories about the recipients and how the break-ins went.


The Free Beer and Hot Wings Show won the Michigan Association of Broadcasters award for Best Morning Broadcast Personality/Radio Team in 2005[6] 2006,[7] and 2007.[8]


Robot joined the show on November 10th 2010 during the great "Barry, berry, bury" debate between Producer Steve and Eric Zane. He quickly became a fan favorite after coming out and with his style of saying whatever comes to mind, similar to Eric Zane, and his Free Beer esque "word scrambles". He usually starts a statement with, "Hey everybody, Robot here...".


Station Location Notes
WGRD-FM 97.9 GRD Grand Rapids, Michigan[9][10] Flagship station
WBUZ-FM 102.9 The Buzz Nashville, Tennessee[9][11] Replaced The Bob and Tom Show
WCHR-FM 105.7 The Hawk Manahawkin, New Jersey[12][13][14] First station to carry the show when it became syndicated
WLKZ-FM 104.9 The Hawk Wolfeboro, New Hampshire
WEXP-FM 101.5 The Fox Rutland, Vermont
WHXR 106.3 The Bone Portland, Maine
WQBK-FM 103.5 / 103.9 Q-103 Albany, New York Replaced The Howard Stern Show
WQLZ-FM 92.7 The Rock Station Springfield, Illinois Replaced Ray Lytle's Morning Disaster
WKZQ-FM 96.1 KZQ Myrtle Beach, South Carolina Swapped morning shows with WYAV-FM 104.1 Wave
WWYY-FM 107.1 The Bone Allentown, Pennsylvania
KZRV-FM REV 96.7 St. Cloud, Minnesota
WXKR-FM 94.5 Toledo, OH
WWBN-FM Banana 101.5 Flint, Michigan Replaced The Bob and Tom Show
WJZJ-FM Real Rock 95.5 Traverse City, MI
WVIC-FM 94.1 The Edge Lansing, MI
WXBN-FM 105-5 The Bone Winchester, Virginia
WXCM-FM 97.1 97X Owensboro, Kentucky
WSCO-FM 95.3 The Score Appleton, Wisconsin Replaced The Stephen A. Smith Show
KROG-FM 96.9 The Rogue Medford, Oregon Replaced The Rogue Morning Show with Beefcake & Laura
KRWN-FM 92.9 KRWN The 4 Corners Rock Station Farmington, New Mexico
WPXC-FM 102.9 PIXY 103 Cape Cod, Massachusetts
WNFZ-FM 94.3 The X Knoxville, Tennessee
Rock 94.7 Wausau, WI

Past affiliates

Station Location Reason
KMXN-FM X 92.9 Lawrence, Kansas Station changed format in 2009
WDRK-FM 99.9 The Carp Eau Claire, Wisconsin[15] Station changed format in August 2009.
WXTT-FM eXtra 99.1 Champaign, Illinois
WYAV-FM 104.1 Wave Myrtle Beach, South Carolina Swapped morning shows with WKZQ-FM 96.1 KZQ
WODE-FM 99.9 The Hawk Allentown, PA
KERX-FM 95.3 The Rebel Fort Smith, Arkansas
WTHK-FM 97.5 The Hawk Trenton, New Jersey Station changed format in November 2006
WEGE-FM 104.9 The Eagle Lima, Ohio[16]
KBZZ-AM The Big Buzz 1270 AM Reno, Nevada
WAVF-FM 96.1 WAVE FM Charleston, South Carolina


  1. ^ "Free Beer and Hot Wings Info". April 9, 2008. Retrieved 2008-04-09. 
  2. ^ "June 2004 News and Notes". 2004-06-11. 
  3. ^ "Barkley, Simms, Harbaugh on tap for Thursday's DP Show". CNN. 
  4. ^ "ACTP Updates November 2005" (pdf). Retrieved 2008-04-14. [dead link]
  5. ^ Free Beer and Hot Wings embrace the Holidays
  6. ^ "Michigan Association of Broadcasters". Retrieved 2008-04-14. 
  7. ^ "Michigan Association of Broadcasters". Retrieved 2008-04-14. 
  8. ^ "Michigan Association of Broadcasters". Retrieved 2008-04-14. 
  9. ^ a b Slack, Chris (2006-11-24). "Red Meat and Boobies". Nashville Scene. 
  10. ^ "Grand Rapids Rock Alternative 97.9 WGRD". April 8, 2008. Retrieved 2008-04-08. 
  11. ^ "The Buzz Homepage". April 8, 2008. Retrieved 2008-04-08. 
  12. ^ Fybush, Scott (2004-06-14). "WBIX Sold (Again)". NorthEast Radio Watch. 
  13. ^ "The Hawk's Free Beer and Hot Wings Page". April 8, 2008. Archived from the original on 2008-03-08. Retrieved 2008-04-08. 
  14. ^ "From Animation to Streaming Radio, Cable Interconnect to Web, Region's Diamond Specialist Takes to the Airwaves in a New Way for a New Generation". MyWire. 2006-03-03. 
  15. ^ "The Carps Show List". April 8, 2008. Retrieved 2008-04-08. [dead link]
  16. ^ "Free Beer and Hot Wings Info". April 8, 2008. Retrieved 2008-04-08. 

External links

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