Melissa Walsh

Woods couple streams family fun

Grosse Pointe News | May 31st, 2018 | Pointer of Interest


Woods couple streams family fun By Melissa Walsh

Bill and Danielle McAllister say talk-radio media is in their DNA as a couple.

“We met on the air,” Danielle said.

Danielle was performing at the Detroit Hoedown May 23, 2007, where Bill’s radio show co-host, Jay Towers, was doing television work.

“I was a huge fan of Bill’s radio show, so I immediately approached Jay, gushing about how much I enjoyed Bill’s personality and his takes and opinions on things and his sense of humor. So Jay invited me to be a musical guest on their show.”

The two soon became a couple and remain in Detroit’s entertainment and media scene. Last March they launched a morning podcast from their Grosse Pointe Woods home, co-hosting their live broadcast, “At Home with the McAllisters,” 8 to 10 a.m. Monday through Friday. The pair serve up friendly “water-cooler” conversation for the morning commute and early workday with no prescribed scope or agenda.

“The idea for the show is, yes, we do the show from our home and the appeal, or the draw, is that we want you, the listener, to feel like you’re right there with us,” Bill said. “We try to talk about what everyone else is talking about.”

“We go out in 10,000 different directions, like any married couple does,” Danielle said.

Metro Detroiters might call theirs a mixed marriage. Westsider Danielle Carlomusto, 39, grew up in Livonia, and Bill, 54, is an eastsider from Warren.

Today, they’re Pointers raising fraternal 2-year-old twins, Amelia and Marco, who are off-camera during the live streaming but appear spontaneously on mic in the background.

“We have old Grosse Pointe hardwood floors. So you’ll hear a creak or a wayward animal cracker falling through a vent,” Danielle said.

The McAllisters, who moved to the Woods in 2013, said doing the show from their home supports the work-life balance they need.

“I think living in this community in particular has been helpful because you know all your neighbors,” Danielle said. “Everyone has these extensive ties within the community and everyone has this allegiance to each other and it’s a very tight-knit community.”

Bill said going forward they plan to invite people on the show they see regularly, such as a barista at the coffee shop or an employee at the health food store.

“Because we do talk about our neighborhood,” Bill said. “We talk about our community, not just metro Detroit, but our community specifically. And there’s just a feel to Grosse Pointe that we don’t have in other cities.”

Supporting Bill’s statement, Danielle sang the Sesame Street lyric, “Oh, who are the people in your neighborhood?”

Danielle is a long-time musician. Known as Danielle Car, her country/Americana tracks are available online.

“I’ve always been a musician. That’s how we met,” Danielle said.

“She does country, but her biggest influence is Queen,” Bill said. “We’re both huge music fans and I’d say very knowledgeable music fans.”

“I tend to sequester myself within my own brain and go down in my little studio downstairs and experiment a little bit,” Danielle said.

“You’re like the Beatles when Sgt. Pepper’s came along,” Bill joked.

“I’ve been waiting for someone to say that,” Danielle replied.

From 2007 to 2016, Bill co-hosted “The Jay and Bill Show” and “The Stoney and Bill Show” on 97.1 The Ticket.

Danielle’s career includes stretches at WNIC, The Beat and WYCD.

“I remember doing interviews with my family with the little Casio tape recorder I got for my 11th birthday,” Danielle said. “And I remember them being very annoyed with that little microphone. But I thought everyone had a story to tell and I wanted to record it.”

Added Bill, “As a youngster myself, my brother and our friend Greg — one of us had a tape recorder — you know kids record themselves and we would re-create Detroit Tigers games. We had two bats we would click together to the sound of the bat and someone would be the play-by-play guy and another the color analyst and the other one would do the sound effects. He’d take a ball and mitt and (sound effect) ‘There’s the out. … I would love to have those tapes. I don’t know where they are. They’re ‘looong gone.’”

Outside their home studio, the McAllisters look forward to discovering more in the Pointes.

“Now that the kids are getting older, we’re going to have more opportunities to explore the community more,” Danielle said.

Knowing now what the community offers for parents of twin infants and toddlers, Danielle said they’ll learn what the Pointes offer to parents of twins in school and extracurricular activities.

“We adore our local library,” where she takes the twins for story time, Danielle said. “And in the summer months, we love our Lake Front Park.”

“Once the kids get older, I plan on coaching Little League and getting involved,” Bill said, “and my daughter likes to dance a lot, so we plan on enrolling her in the local Irish dance club and ballet. We plan on being involved with all of that with them.”

Danielle is active on the Grosse Pointe mom swap Facebook page, where she’s connected with other women in the community.

“As a new mom, it’s easy to feel isolated, especially a first-time mom. You feel like you’re on an island of one and no one understands,” she said. “But it seems from the time I was pregnant with them up through walking them through the neighborhood with the stroller, someone’s always offered a kind word or a sympathetic ear or a pat on the back.”

Danielle and Bill said they’re observing interests emerging in their young children.

“They like the music we like, which is sad for them but great for us,” Danielle joked.

“They’re going to be the kids in school who, when in first and second grade (other kids) are talking about Arianna Grande or whomever else, say ‘What about Freddie Mercury?’” Bill said.