Cumia in 2007
April 26, 1961 |
Elwood, New York, U.S.
|Alma mater||Elwood-John H. Glenn High School|
|Show||The Artie and Anthony Show|
|Previous show(s)||Opie and Anthony
The Anthony Cumia Show
|Spouse(s)||Jennifer Cumia (m. 1990; div. 2002)|
Anthony Cumia (born April 26, 1961) is an American radio personality and broadcaster who is best known as the co-host of the Opie and Anthony radio show with Gregg "Opie" Hughes that aired from 1995 to 2014, alongside comedian Jim Norton from 2001.
In 2014, Cumia was fired by SiriusXM Radio after posting a series of tweets, which they deemed to be "racially-charged and hate-filled". He started his own video podcast soon after named The Anthony Cumia Show, which aired until September 2017. He has since been the co-host of The Artie and Anthony Show with comedian and actor Artie Lange.
- 1 Early life
- 2 Radio career
- 3 Other ventures
- 4 Personal life
- 5 References
- 6 External links
Cumia was born on April 26, 1961 in Elwood, Town of Huntington, New York. He has two siblings, Joe and Dawn. He attended Elwood-John H. Glenn High School in Elwood, but did not graduate. He spent several years of his childhood living with his father in California.
Before he started his radio career, Cumia took up manual work installing heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems. He wanted to get into radio, and was influenced by popular New York City personalities Howard Stern and Don Imus.
Opie and Anthony (1994–2014)
Cumia first met radio personality Gregg "Opie" Hughes when the latter held an O. J. Simpson song parody contest on his Nighttime Attitude show on Long Island radio station WBAB. He and Joe decided to enter the contest, and recorded an entry as Rotgut titled "Gonna Electric Shock OJ" to the tune of "(Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay" by Otis Redding. The song was a hit with Hughes, who played it several times on his show and, in September 1994, invited the Cumias to the studio to perform the song live. Cumia began to contribute and produce comedy bits for Hughes and the station's morning show soon after, while working his installation job. By early 1995, Hughes and Cumia decided to become the hosts of their own radio show, and Hughes produced an air check and sent it to several stations.
Hughes and Cumia accepted an offer to host afternoons at WAAF in Boston, Massachusetts and launched Opie and Anthony in March 1995. Cumia originally thought that by getting into radio he would make very good money, but later said his salary at WAAF was barely higher than doing manual labour. The pair were fired in April 1998 for an April Fool's Day prank that had listeners believe Boston Mayor Thomas Menino was killed in a car accident while transporting a young female Haitian prostitute. Cumia referred to their days on WAAF as the most cringe-inducing moments of his career.
In June 1998, Opie and Anthony began at WNEW in New York City in afternoons, becoming a top 10 afternoon drive show in two years. Around 2000, Hughes considered leaving the show but Cumia convinced him to stay as Infinity Broadcasting promised them a more lucrative contract and have the show nationally syndicated. The show developed further when comedian Jim Norton joined the show as their co-host in 2001, as a go between for their off air troubles. By mid-2002, Opie and Anthony was syndicated on 17 stations nationwide. On August 22, 2002, Opie and Anthony was cancelled over their "Sex for Sam 3" segment five days earlier that involved a Virginia couple having simulated sex in St. Patrick's Cathedral. Infinity kept Hughes and Cumia from being hired for the duration of their contract which expired in mid-2004.
On October 4, 2004, the show returned to the air on XM Satellite Radio, a subscription-based satellite radio service. From April 2006 to March 2009, part of the show was simulcast on nine terrestrial radio stations owned by CBS Radio that was compliant to the broadcast regulations imposed by the Federal Communications Commission. During this time, XM suspended the show for thirty days on May 15, 2007 after a homeless man dubbed "Homeless Charlie" expressed his wish to rape Condoleezza Rice and Laura Bush.
On July 3, 2014, Cumia was fired by SiriusXM for a series of tweets that were described by the company as "racially-charged and hate-filled". His firing came after Cumia stated that he was repeatedly punched by a black woman as he was taking pictures in Times Square. In the following week, Cumia refused to apologize for the incident.
Live from the Compound (2012–2014)
During his time at SiriusXM, Cumia gradually built a studio in his home to broadcast. In 2012, he launched Live from the Compound via Ustream that he started as a hobby and involved discussions on a variety of matters and "drunk karaoke". Cumia retired the program in 2014.
The Anthony Cumia Show (2014–2017)
In the week after his firing from SiriusXM in July 2014, Cumia announced the launch of The Anthony Cumia Show, a "live, uncensored HD video podcast" broadcast from his home studio. Initially he was "petrified" about the show's success and lacked the confidence to turn the project into a full-time job, but hired people to help get the show running in one month. The show launched on August 4, 2014 through his subscription-based network, Compound Media which was initially known as The Anthony Cumia Network, from Monday through Thursday from 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm. In June 2015, Cumia expanded the network with new shows added to the weekly schedule. In August 2015, Cumia relocated his show to a studio in New York City to better suit guests and the new hosts.
The Artie and Anthony Show (2017–present)
On August 21, 2017, Cumia announced the addition of comedian and actor Artie Lange as the co-host of his new show, The Artie and Anthony Show. The show launched on September 5 and airs from Monday to Thursday, from 4–6 p.m.
In September 2017, Cumia announced he is in the process of writing a book. He revealed the completion of some chapters, and a foreword written by Norton.
Along with Opie, Cumia co-hosted XFL Gameday, a pregame show for Vince McMahon's startup football league, for four weeks in February 2001. The half-hour show was produced by NBC's owned and operated stations and shown on Channel 4 in New York. The show was taped on Wednesdays at the WWF's "World" restaurant in Times Square, and was open to the public. It featured analysis by WNBC sportscaster Bruce Beck and New York/New Jersey Hitmen head coach Rusty Tillman, but also featured plenty of raunch. One segment featured Opie and Anthony as chefs, inserting a cucumber between two melons.
After the show's cancellation four weeks into the season, XFL creator Vince McMahon stated that he'd had no creative control over the show, further elaborating, "I heard it was horrible. Had I seen it, I would have shut it down."
Opie, along with Anthony released a compilation of segments from their show that aired on WAAF on a CD entitled Demented World in November 1997.
Opie and Anthony Traveling Virus
Search and Destroy
On the morning of March 26, 2008, Opie & Anthony revealed they had taped a pilot for Comedy Central. The show was titled Search & Destroy and it featured teams of comedians performing various tasks throughout New York City. Opie and Anthony believe that it may have been too graphic even for cable television. Comedy Central did not pick the show up.
In 1987, Cumia met the future Jennifer Cumia who was dating his brother, Joseph, at the time. Anthony began dating her in 1989 after she broke up with Joe, and the two married after seven months. In March 2002, they finalized their divorce. Cumia later stated that marrying Jennifer was the biggest mistake of his life. He dated Jill Nicolini in 2008, and model Melissa Stetten in 2012. Cumia also took an 18-year-old date to his high school reunion.
On December 19, 2015, Cumia was in an argument with his 26-year old girlfriend Dani Brand in his house, which turned violent. He was arrested by Nassau County police on charges of strangulation, assault, criminal mischief, and unlawful imprisonment. Cumia was released without bail on December 21, at which time his attorney stated that Cumia denied the allegations. In June 2016 Cumia pled guilty to third-degree assault and criminal obstruction of breathing in a plea deal. As a condition of the deal, if Cumia completed six months of outpatient alcohol rehab and participated in a program designed for batterers, the original charges to which he pled guilty would be dropped and reduced to harassment, which would not leave Cumia with a record.
On March 30, 2016, Cumia announced he would be spending April in rehabilitation for unspecified issues. He said that although his decision to enter rehab was related to the December 2015 incident, it was not court-ordered. However, Cumia has described on-air his frequent alcohol abuse that started at a young age due to the enabling from his father. Cumia's alcohol abuse had also been a recurring source of humor on the show although at times his co-hosts would comment on the detriment his drinking had on the quality of the show as on occasion Cumia would be unable to perform due to a hangover.
Cumia is a supporter of the National Rifle Association and has a carry permit for New York City. His favorite weapon is the Heckler & Koch P2000 .40 caliber, which he normally carries with him, in addition to his PPKS .380 ACP.
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- "High Profile NYC Celeb With a Concealed Carry Permit Responds to New York's New Laws: 'We're All Just Sheep Now'". 16 January 2013.