KKAT (FM-101.9) is conducting a nationwide search for a new morning team to replace what was Utah's most popular radio show: "The Morning Guys," Richard Cano and Ken Simmons.

The DJs, together since the fall of 1990, were dismissed last week in a shakeup after Simmons pleaded guilty to lewdness, a Class A misdemeanor. Market research reveals KKAT listeners want a different type of morning team."We want a warmer, friendlier morning show," Dana Horner, KKAT general manager, said of conclusions based on the research.

He said KKAT is looking closely at five different radio teams across the country as possible replacements for the "Morning Guys." He said that despite playing more music, a new team will still have plenty of time to talk.

Horner also said the research shows listeners want more morning music, and KKAT has been playing more music since Dec. 13. However, he stressed these modifications do not involve a format change for the station, as erroneously reported by various media last weekend.

While the search for new DJs goes on, Jim Michelson, "Gentleman Jim" and KKAT program director, is the main morning host, assisted by Kevin Stanfield, who is doing news, weather and traffic.

Because of this temporary morning team, the remainder of KKAT's weekday lineup is: T.J. Evans, 10 a.m. until 2 p.m.; Bob Wells, 2-6 p.m.; Gaylen Palmer, 6-10 p.m.; and Tracy Chapman, 10 p.m. to 2 a.m. Wells used to do the 6-10 slot, and Palmer is Tom Barberi's producer on sister station KALL-AM.

While KKAT management may have ended Cano's contract, he's not totally out in the cold.

"He's a good guy," Horner said, explaining Cano has the talents to do a warmer, friendlier morning show, but that he'd need a fresh start because listeners likely won't accept him as such after four years on an irreverent show.

Because Cano didn't do anything illegal, KKAT is displaying a show of support by providing him with his own office until he finds a new radio job elsewhere and is even assisting him with an employment search.

"We don't think he'll be off the air for long," Horner said.

While some media have reported that Cano is being hounded by the public as if he had a part in Simmons' off-air problems, Horner said these reports have been overblown. He said Cano is receiving some "insensitive" comments from the public regarding his former on-air partner's crime, however.

Cano started at KKAT with co-host Chris Kramer in April 1989, 18 months before Simmons came along.

Cano is in Mexico this week on a vacation.

- KMXB (alias "The Mix," FM-107.5) - The station's second "Dollar Bill Exchange" will be held Saturday, Jan. 29, at the R.C. Willey store in Orem, 40 E. 1300 South.

Listeners can exchange up to five of their dollar bills for five "Mix Bucks." Then, beginning Jan. 31 on the "Tom and Robbin" show, "Mix Buck" serial numbers will be called out and the money can grow anywhere from $50 to $500.

KMXB recently had a similar "Dollar Bill Exchange" at the R.C. Willey in Salt Lake City.

- KUER (FM-90.1) will celebrate Black History Month in February with numerous specials. The station's classical music hosts, Gene Pack, Ricklen Nobis and Sheila Hayes, will feature the works of black composers throughout the month.

Here are some highlights for the month:

- "Ain't Gonna Be Treated this Way," Thursdays, Feb. 3 and 10, at 6:30 p.m.

- "Great Black Performers," produced by Pack, will air Mondays, Tuesdays and Fridays at 9 a.m. throughout the month.

- "Classically Black: A Tribute to Marian Anderson" will be presented Friday, Feb. 4, 9 a.m.

- KCPW (FM-88.3) broadcasts live weekly sessions of the Hinckley Institute of Politics at the University of Utah each Tuesday and Thursday at 11 a.m. The George S. and Dolores Dore Eccles Foundation funds the broadcasts.

KCPW will celebrate Presidents Day early with a five-part series, "May It Please the Court: Five Landmark Cases." The five 30-minute shows will air daily at 10 a.m. Jan. 31 through Feb. 4.

- KXRK (alias "X-96," FM) - Here are the top songs for 1993 on FM-96.1: 1. "No Rain," by Blind Melon; 2. "Plush," by Stone Temple Pilots; 3. "Crazy Mary," by Pearl Jam; 4. "All That She Wants," by Ace of Base; 5. "Sober," by Tool; 6. "Creep," by Radiohead; 7. "I Feel You," by Depeche Mode; 8. "Linger," by the Cranberries.

- KUMT (alias "The Mountain," FM-105.7) - More than 400 people attended a Jan. 22 benefit for the Utah Blues Society sponsored by the station. The bands included Reverend Willie, House of Cards, the Rooster Band and Fender Benders. KUMT plans more events like this in coming months.

- Here's the station's weekday DJ lineup: Rob Reisen, 6-10 a.m.; Len Thomas, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.; and Ed Nunn, 3-7 p.m. Nunn has a "5:01 Blues" segment at 5:01 p.m.

- MORNING RADIO HAPPENINGS - "Jon and Dan" on KLZX have been in a Super Bowl mode this week, giving away party treats to listeners. Their movie critic, "Lex Reed" (Clyde Lewis), discussed sequels Monday and his theory of how they, particularly an upcoming "Karate Kid" film, caused the earthquake in California. The DJs also discussed Utah game shows and had a top 10 list about finding a job in Utah County. "Mr. Twister" had a two-part series about ice fishing this week.

I still haven't heard Karl Malone host the morning show on KUTQ lately, but McCormick and Scotty do have some recorded promotions by Malone airing. In one, Malone says, "You're listening to McCormick and Scotty, so what?" Scotty was off the air several days last week while he was in St. George filming a commercial. The "Breakfast Bunch" is approaching its second anniversary and has now moved into seventh place among the most popular morning shows.

KKAT is hyping its loyal listener card this week and the advantages it provides. The station is also sponsoring a special Super Bowl party at the Westerner Club Sunday.

"Mike in the Morning" on KZHT said he's been using some of his own money to purchase tickets to an upcoming Salt Lake concert for Janet Jackson to ensure listeners who win tickets to the event have great seats.

"Ron and Allen" on KBER were lining up dates for "Dave," Ron's friend who is coming to town soon. Ron said he's paying for the expenses for the dates. Allen celebrated a birthday Wednesday. . . . KXRK is sponsoring a spring break ship cruise in a couple of months and Bill and Kerry from the "Radio From Hell" morning show are already discussing their plans for the trip.

"The Wakeup Club" on KVRI had a special guest Tuesday - "Bob" from Texas, who won $10 million in the Publishers Clearing House Sweepstakes in 1989. He's now mayor of a small Texas town and still single.

"Fisher and Todd" on KISN-FM encouraged listeners to look for a lost dog Tuesday, even offering prize incentives. The DJs also had a telephone interview with the "Secrets" master, Bill Poundstone from California. He explained how several magic/illusion tricks are performed and said the secret Big Mac sauce has its origin in a Russian dressing. In this week's "Battle of the Sexes," David defeated Michelle.

- KBZN (alias "The Breeze," FM-97.9) - Native Ground, whose albums include "One Fine Morning," will be on the Sunday, Jan. 30, "Musical Starstreams" show, 8-10 a.m. Later in the day, Richard Smith will be featured on "Jazz Trax," 7 p.m.-midnight.

- Here's a schedule of the station's "10 O'Clock CD" show next week:

Monday, Jan. 31: "Ocarina II," by Modena & Audin.

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Tuesday, Feb. 1: "Soleil," by Ralf Illenberger.

Wednesday, Feb. 2: "Cristofori's Dream," by David Lanz.

Thursday, Feb. 3: "Global Village," by Special EFX.

Friday, Feb. 4: "Breathless," by Kenny G.

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