He was fired from KGO in November 2008. Bouley was forced to recreate himself, returning to stand-up comedy and re-entering radio in a market where no one would hire him. Subsequently, he independently syndicated his show five days a week, going nationwide after negotiating a satellite hookup. In November 2011, Karel returned to KGO, where he currently occupies his previous weekend time slot, in addition to his weekday show.
Bouley is a high profile blogger for The Huffington Post, and his editorials have appeared in The Wall Street Journal. He was also an editor and columnist for The Advocate.com, and a celebrity photographer for Billboard Magazine.
Charles Raymond Bouley, II was born November 7, 1962, in Miami Beach, Florida, to Charles Raymond Bouley (1929-1987) and Rose Marie (née Tremblay) Bouley (1930-2003). He has been an entertainer since childhood, emceeing his first event in 7th grade, the talent show, "Car Wash", at his junior high school. While attending Long Beach Poly High School, Bouley was editor of the high school's newspaper, "High Life." and reviewing plays for his school paper for free by taking the words "high school" out of the paper's masthead and getting on all the PR lists. As a member of the press he was able to be included on press-only lists for premieres and openings in the Los Angeles area. With this type of press access, Bouley began attending stage productions and writing reviews of the shows for publication in his school and community newspapers. Unable to afford tickets to movies, he became an usher at the Long Beach Terrace Theatre so he could review the new releases.
Karel and Andrew by Judy Jones
Charles Karel Bouley, known on-the-air as Karel, is an American talk radio host and author. Bouley and his late domestic partner, Andrew Howard, were the first openly gay radio talk show hosts on KFI in Los Angeles. Karel and Howard met in the late 80s and were together until Howard's death in 2001. Following the death of Andrew, Bouley went on to file and win a lawsuit in the Court of Appeal of the State of California to establish the rights of domestic partners to be recognized.
Bouley attended community college in Southern California and then university on scholarship where he majored in music journalism, but did not graduate. Karel went on to work for Billboard Magazine; his affiliation with the publication gave him further access to music concerts and after-concert parties.
Before his radio career began in the late 1990s, Karel was a stand-up comic and recording artist. While getting very little attention from the GLBT press, his 1995 album, "Dance ... Or Else," attracted critical notice in the mainstream press, it was named #10 pick-of-the-year by "Billboard"'s Dance Music editor Larry Flick. Karel later recorded the single "Don't Stop" with Steve Bronski and the single "I Am" with Jellybean Benitez as well as "Take Your Heartache Away" also on the Jellybean label. Many projects featured Thea Austin, a personal friend of Karel and former lead singer of Snap!!. Bouley also owned a graphic arts company and worked as a celebrity photographer, imaging celebrities such as Michael Jackson and Diana Ross.
Bouley, along with his domestic partner, Andrew Howard, started in radio at KYPA Los Angeles in addition to Triangle Broadcasting based in Palm Springs, California. For the latter, the duo hosted a morning program, "Good Morning Gay America".
Professionally known as "Karel and Andrew", Bouley and Howard became the first openly gay radio talk-show hosts on a U.S. major-market radio station in 1998. Hired for the afternoon drive slot at Los Angeles' KFI, the duo replaced KFI mainstays John Kobylt and Ken Chiampou. "I'm sure there are a million gay [radio] hosts, but not many of them are open, and no one had ever appeared on the air as a gay couple," said Ron Rodrigues, editor-in-chief of Radio & Records magazine. " The backbone of their on-air banter was their contrasting world views. Bouley, who dominated the conversation, could be stopped in his tracks with one, well-placed word from Howard". Al Peterson, an editor at Radio & Records magazine said, "They didn't feel like it was their job to be the poster boys for the gay community or to effect social change, just because they were the first openly gay hosts who were partners off the air."
In March 2000, however, "Karel & Andrew" were bumped from the afternoon-drive slot into the evening-drive slot, being replaced by the nationally syndicated Phil Hendrie Show. David G. Hall, KFI's Director of Syndication, was quoted at the time of the change as saying "KFI might still find a spot" for "The Karel & Andrew Show," stressing that the team "haven't been terminated." The station's programmers said they were preparing to return "Karel & Andrew" to the airwaves by putting their show on another Clear Channel station.
Unfortunately, Andrew Howard, who also was suffering from AIDS, suddenly died from a heart attack on May 21, 2001. At the time of his death, Howard had completed two children's novels he hoped to get published and a gay-themed play he wrote for Bouley to star in. He was 34. Following his partner's death, Bouley returned to KFI and hosted a talk show there until he was fired by station management in April 2002. Seven months later, Karel was hired as an on-air host by the most successful San Francisco radio station at the time, KGO, for the weekend evening time slot.
Bouley has appeared on television, having completed two seasons on TNN's Ultimate Revenge with Ryan Seacrest. He also wrote and directed a 60-second spot, Barbarians At The Gate of Our Future, which won second place in the GLAAD "I Do" Marriage Equality project. Bouley has been a fill-in host on the Bill Press radio talk show and has also appeared as a guest commentator on topical issues on CNN, MSNBC and Fox News. He has appeared as a frequent guest on TV and radio as a Macintosh Computer expert. On August 4, 2010, Karel appeared on the nationally syndicated Alan Colmes Show to discuss that day's controversial decision to overturn California's Proposition 8, allowing equal rights for marriage. The next day, Colmes appeared on The Karel Show, referring to him as a "trailblazer" for the rights of gay citizens.
In 2004, Bouley authored a book of essays titled, You Can't Say That. In this well-titled book, he never holds back in speaking frankly about a wide range of topics. The book was published by the LGBT publishing house, Alyson Press. Karel also contributed to "When I Knew" by Robert Trachtenberg, stories of "coming out" directed at Gay and Lesbian youth.
Bouley's new book, Shouting at Windmills, BS From Bush to Obama was released in June 2011. This wide-ranging book of essays chronicles the end of the Bush Era and Obama to the Present. It also reveals what life is like after a very public firing and puts the "Joe the Plumber" issue to rest.
Following the untimely death of his domestic partner, Andrew Howard, in 2001, "Charles Karel Bouley II" went on to file and win a lawsuit in the Court of Appeal of the State of California in Los Angeles County to establish the rights of domestic partners to be recognized as such and giving them the right to sue for wrongful death: AB 25 of 2005, the "California Domestic Partnership Law" This court victory effectively changed the wrongful death laws in California for domestic partners, as well as making them retroactive. In signing the AB 25, Governor Schwarzenegger wrote: "This legislation...is about civil rights, respect, responsibility, and, most of all,it is about family. Therefore, I am honored to sign one of the strongest domestic partner laws in the nation."
In 2008, Bouley had no choice but to recreate himself, returning to stand-up comedy and re-entering radio in a market where no one would hire him. Billed as Karel Stands Up!, he is regularly seen performing his uncensored stand-up comedy to sold out audiences in the Rrazz Room, in San Francisco and at Planet Gemini in Monterey, California. He has also appeared with Bruce Vilanch at Cobb's Comedy Club, in San Francisco. He has performed at The Comedy Store in Los Angeles and at The Laugh Factory in Long Beach, California.
In March 2009, Bouley was employed by San Francisco's KNGY as well as by KRXA in Monterey, California, his only remuneration coming from ad revenue and unemployment benefits. Shortly thereafter, he was hired by San Francisco's Green 960, which became his home station. Working from his home studio, he had been his own producer, engineer and ad salesman for over two years. In January 2010, Bouley was hired by KKGN, San Francisco; and by KYNS, San Luis Obispo. KJRB, in Spokane, Washington has added Bouley's show to their lineup. as has KGOE in Eureka, California, Green 1640 in Decatur and Atlanta, Georgia, KJFK Reno, WXMR in Vermont and WVNJ in New Jersey, and some areas of New York. Karel is now billed as the "Nation's first openly gay liberal talk show host." "The Karel Show" went into syndication in December 2010, after Bouley negotiated a satellite hook-up with Genesis Communication Network. In November 2011, Karel added an FM station, KNWZ 94.3, to his lineup on Sundays, 5PM to 7PM, also serving KPLM, KPSC, KPSF, KPSH, KPSI, KPSI-FM, KPST-FM, KPTR, KRCK-FM, KUNA-FM, KVLA-FM, KWXY, KXPS, California Radio Markets Bakersfield, Chico, Fresno, Los Angeles, Merced, Modesto, and Oxnard-Ventura
The "Karel Show" on KGO was reinstated in March 2011. He can be heard on KGO 9pm -12am on Saturdays and 7pm- 10pm on Sundays.
"They say home is where the heart is and I definitely left my heart at the KGO studios. It's my radio home, my flagship," Karel states. Jack Swanson, KGO's former operations director, had been supportive of Karel returning to the station for some time. The"Karel Show' will continue in syndication five days a week at all syndicated stations.
Bouley is currently single and resides near the beach in Southern California, with his two dogs and a cat.
Shouting At Windmills: BS From Bush to Obama by Charles Karel Bouley II
Paperback: 518 pages
Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (June 27, 2011)
Amazon: Shouting At Windmills: BS From Bush to Obama
Amazon Kindle: Shouting At Windmills: BS From Bush to Obama
Syndicated talk show host, political satirist, author and all around entertainer Karel (Charles Karel Bouley II) gathers some of his most controversial columns from the HuffingtonPost as well as never-before-published forays in to common sense covering the end of the Bush Era, the beginning of the Obama and even a glimpse in to his personal life through a very public firing over a certain plumber and the rebuilding of a career at the time America rebuilds as well.
More LGBT Couples at my website: http://www.elisarolle.com/, My Ramblings/Real Life Romance
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