Talk Radio/Media Industry News

Thursday, June 21, 2018

| June 21, 2018

PPM Analysis: Sports Talk. Managing editor Mike Kinosian presents a look at the performances of radio stations based on data from Nielsen Audio’s May 2018 PPM survey, today focusing on sports talk.  More than half of the sports talk stations in PPM markets saw their 6+ weekly AQH shares rise compared to the April survey (54%).  Better still, 65% of sports stations realized positive 6+ movement compared to the same ratings period a year ago.  There are no sports talk stations ranking #1 in their market (6+), however Entercom’s WFAN, New York ranked #3 in the Long Island market and the company’s KDKA-FM, Pittsburgh also ranked #3.  See the entire report here.

Beasley Adds FM Translator to News/Talk KDWN, Las Vegas.  Las Vegas news/talker KDWN-AM officially begins life on the FM band today (6/21) as Beasley Media Group adds translator K268CS at 101.5 FM to the station’s transmission.  At the same time, the station re-brands as “The New 101.5FM/720AM The Talk of Las Vegas.”  The translator is located “high atop the Stratosphere in Las Vegas.  The decision to create a simulcast broadcast stems from the company’s market research and a desire to offer Las Vegas residents an alternate way to hear KDWN’s locally originated programming, along with a venerable line-up of personalities that will include Laura Ingraham, Sean Hannity and Mark Levin.”  Beasley Las Vegas VP and market manager Dennis Gwiazdon adds, “We’re truly excited about this new opportunity to expand KDWN’s presence in the Las Vegas market.  Not only does this provide our listeners with an additional choice to enjoy KDWN’s programming, but an FM simulcast immediately adds value to our advertising customers.”

TRN Seeks Permission to Appeal Case Against Westwood One.  Radio company Talk Radio Network is asking Southern District of New York bankruptcy court Judge Shelley Chapman to give it relief from the automatic stay so it can appeal the Oregon federal court dismissal of its case against Westwood One and others.  TRN says it filed a timely appeal of the previous dismissal but Cumulus Media’s entry in to Chapter 11 last fall put an automatic stay in place that prevented the Eleventh Circuit Appellate Court from taking up the case.  Now that Cumulus has exited Chapter 11, TRN wants to continue the appeal process.  It’s also asking for an extension in which to file its Opening Brief in the Westwood One case.  Fellow defendants in the case are: Compass Media Networks, WYD Media Management, WYM Media Management, Lew Dickey Jr., and Charles SteinhauerMark Masters-led TRN has claimed in a number of previous suits that Westwood One and the other defendants all conspired to monopolize the radio syndication ad sales market and that Westwood One also committed breach of fiduciary duty, among other allegations.

TALKERS News Notes. Award-winning hospitality figure, New York Times best-selling author, entrepreneur, and television personality Jon Taffer is partnering with PodcastOne to present his new podcast, “Jon Taffer: No Excuses.”  The new program debuted this week with fan-voted guest Big Cat from Barstool Sports.  The weekly show “features the Bar Rescue star’s trademark straight talk and unapologetic approach to daily topics, current events and celebrity interviews. In addition to his genuine opinions and in-your-face analysis on these topics, Jon will offer tough-love advice to fans in the interactive program.”…..Conservative media figure Armstrong Williams – who had a long career hosting a radio talk show on AM stations – is putting his SiriusXM program to bed. Williams tells the Heritage Foundation’s Daily Signal that he will focus all of his attention on his television station company, Howard Stirk Holdings.  He’s not exiting the performance side of the business entirely as he’ll continue to host his eponymous TV show and will keep producing his podcast…..Scripps executive Tom Langmyer is being honored by the Buffalo Broadcasters Association with entrance into its Hall of Fame as part of the class of 2018.  Langmyer, who currently serves as VP of News, Talk and Sports and GM for news/talk WTMJ and country WKTI in Milwaukee, is a Buffalo native and former WGR-AM traffic reporter.  He’s being honored with the Buffalo Bob Smith Award bestowed upon a native broadcaster who achieves national prominence…..WBUR, Boston announces the winner of its Next Great Show Content and has selected “McSweeney’s Presents.”  The program was submitted – and beat about 400 other program pitches – by McSweeney’s Internet Tendency editor Chris Monks as a way of bringing the online magazine’s humor and insight to radio.  Monks says, “I am thrilled that WBUR chose my idea for the Next Great Show contest.  I look forward to making a radio version of McSweeney’s Internet Tendency, and the challenge of not bringing shame upon my family of avid WBUR listeners.”  The program is said to be a “satirical look at the world, from pop culture, to politics, to the playground, featuring work of the country’s best established and up-and-coming writers and comics.”

TV Comedy Writer Andy Cowan Is This Week’s Guest on Harrison Podcast. The world of television sitcoms and late-night talk shows is explored in depth as former “Cheers,” “Seinfeld,” and “Third Rock from the Sun” writer Andy Cowan is this week’s guest on the award-winning PodcastOne series, “The Michael Harrison Interview.” Cowan discusses his new book, Banging My Head Against the Wall: A Comedy Writers Guide to Seeing Stars (Black Rose Writing, 2018) and the neurotic nature of his brand of comedy as well as comedians in general. The discussion includes a look at the fractionalization of TV audiences going forward into the 21st century. Harrison states, “Andy Cowan’s unique mind operates at the turbulent intersection between the generations, the centuries, the down-to-earth, and the absurd. He is a largely unsung genius and potential cultural hero to the gigantic but quietly suffering population of neurotics that drag their sorry asses amongst the rest of us who are perfect.” To listen to the podcast in its entirety, please click here or click on the player box marked “The Michael Harrison Interview” located in the right-hand column on every page of Talkers.com.

Illegal Immigration Policy/Peter Fonda Tweet, Trump Trade War, U.S.-North Korea Meeting, Cops Kills Black Teen in Pittsburgh, World Cup, and MLB Action Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (6/20).  The controversy over the separation of children from parents in the crackdown on illegal immigration and the related case of Peter Fonda’s Tweet about separating President Trump’s son from his family; the tariffs being tacked on foreign goods and concerns about  global trade war; the aftermath of President Trump’s meeting with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un; the death of an unarmed black teenager at the hands of a police officer in Pittsburgh; the World Cup tournament in Russia; and Major League Baseball action were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Radio Talk Show Producer Opportunity. The Salem Radio Network is seeking a radio talk show producer in the Washington, D.C. area. Candidates should be capable in booking radio talk shows and have radio experience both on air and in digital. The position is based at the Salem Radio Network News Bureau. Contact Phil Boyce, SVP spoken word for SRN at 212-857-9696, or email resume and qualifications to: Philip.Boyce@salemmedia.com.

 

Music Radio News and Career Moves. Detroit radio personality Lauren Crocker signs a new contract with Cumulus Media’s hot AC WDVD where she’s co-host of the ‘Blaine Fowler Morning Show.”  She joined the program in 2015.  Program director Robby Bridges says, “It sounds clichéd, but it is the absolute truth.  When Lauren first walked in and interviewed with me seven years ago, I knew then she was going to be a superstar.  To see her flourish as co-host of ‘The Blaine Fowler Morning Show’ alongside Blaine and Matty, become a fixture in the Detroit market, work with local charities and appear on ‘Dish Nation’ and WDIV-TV’s ‘Live in the D’ is just terrific.  Lauren’s star is still on the rise and I’m so glad she’ll be with us at Cumulus into the next decade!”…..In Chicago, Cumulus signs alternative WKQX personalities Walt Flakus and Lauren O’Neil to multi-year contracts.  Flakus is assistant program director, music director, and evening personality.  He’s been with WKQX since 2014.  Midday personality O’Neil is entering her seventh year with the station.  Cumulus Chicago VP and market manager Marv Nyren states, “There’s no greater joy than being able to work with incredibly talented people, and Walt and Lauren are two of the most creative, hard-working, and talented people I’ve had the privilege to work with.  They are an essential part of what truly separates us from our competition every day.  Together, Walt, Lauren and the entire staff make 101WKQX one-of-a-kind.”…..WBBM-FM, Chicago morning personality Kevin Buchar, a.k.a. DreX, is off the air as he recovers from complications that arose from a previous surgical procedure.  In the interim, co-host Nina and producer Gabe Ramirez are handling the show duties…..Colorado Springs classic rock KKFM “Classic Rock 98” appoints Jonathan “J.P.” Peletis afternoon drive host and promotions director.  Cumulus Media Colorado Springs operations manager Bobby Irwin says, “J.P. brings to KKFM and our station cluster an awesome mix of radio rock show, digital marketing and promotions experience, with passion for the Colorado lifestyle.”…..Longport Media agrees to sell Atlantic City CHR WWAC “AC 102.7” to Educational Media Foundation for $570,000.  EMF will convert the station into a non-profit and flip it to a Christian music format…..iHeartMedia and MediaLink combined to host the seventh annual intimate VIP Dinner in Antibes, France during the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity.  On Tuesday evening (6/19), the VIP Dinner included a special performance by Jon Bon Jovi.  Attendees included corporate officers from such firms as Unilever, AT&T, Google, Vivendi, Conde Nast and others.  Katie Couric and Ryan Seacrest were also in attendance.  Picture below are (from l-r): Gayle Troberman, chief marketing officer for iHeartMedia; Tom Poleman, chief programming officer for iHeartMedia; Rich Bressler, president, COO and CFO of iHeartMedia; Jon Bon Jovi; John Sykes, president of entertainment enterprises for iHeartMedia; Bob Pittman, chairman and CEO of iHeartMedia; and Tim Castelli, president of national sales and marketing partnerships for iHeartMedia.

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

| June 20, 2018

RTDNA Announces National Edward R. Murrow Award Winners. From more than 4,400 entries, the awards recognize 89 local and network radio, television and digital news organizations for 118 examples of outstanding journalism in 16 categories. The leader in overall Radio Television Digital News Association awards with five – NPR – scores wins in “Continuing Coverage,” “Excellence in Social Media,” “Excellence in Sound,” “Excellence in Hard News,” and “News Documentary.” Hubbard Washington, DC all-news WTOP and New Hampshire Public Radio repeated their 2017 wins for “Overall Excellence” in large market radio and small market radio, respectively. RTDNA executive director Dan Shelley notes, “Winning an RTDNA National Edward R. Murrow Award means that a news organization has provided exemplary public service to its viewers, listeners, and readers. These honorees truly represent the very best in broadcast and digital journalism around the world. We cannot make our communities better unless we understand them, and these stories from news organizations large and small have educated, uplifted, inspired, uncovered, and enlightened. These winning pieces revealed the tragedies of human trafficking, kept audiences safe and informed during devastating hurricanes and fires, and provided desperately sought information and context during too-common moments of violence. They provided insight into healthcare, homelessness and immigration issues, engaged communities in learning about mental health and dug deep into election interference.” In addition to the “Overall Excellence” award won for the second time straight and 12th over 18 years, CBS News Radio was recognized for “Best Audio Newscast” for the sixth time in succession. This year, it was for “World News Roundup” coverage of Hurricane Harvey with Norah O’Donnell reporting from Houston and Steve Kathan anchoring from New York. Coverage of the mass shooting of concertgoers on the Las Vegas Strip last October earned the staff the “Breaking News” award for a report by Steve Futterman, Steve Dorsey, and Deborah Rodriguez. This year’s “Excellence in Writing” award went to Dave Ross for his daily feature. CBS News Radio general manager Craig Swagler states, “It is because of our great radio station affiliates that we are a better, stronger radio network.” Entercom was honored with three awards: Large Market Radio “Excellence in Sound” to all-news KCBS-AM, San Francisco for “Wine Country on Fire”; News Series to all-news WCBS-AM, New York for “The Breaking Point”; and the same station scored for “Newscast” (October 31, 2017, 5:00 pm). The national awards will be presented in four months (10/22) at the RTDNA “Edward R. Murrow Awards Gala” in New York City’s Gotham Hall.

KBME To Shuffle Its Lineup. Former National Football League quarterback Sean Salisbury will join the weekday lineup of iHeartMedia Houston’s KBME “Sports Talk 790” in afternoon drive (3:00 pm – 6:00 pm), starting in less than three weeks (Monday, 7/9). Director of AM programming for iHeartMedia Houston, Bryan Erickson, notes, “We are thrilled to be adding Salisbury to the team. The former quarterback brings a unique perspective from his days on the gridiron. We have put together an all-star lineup of guys who know sports and love talking about sports. [KBME] is truly the best destination for compelling local sports content in Houston.” Salisbury adds, “I have been blessed with a full career. This opportunity to work with iHeart and ‘Sports Talk 790’ was too good to pass up in so many ways. I don’t take these great moments lightly. The last five years have been special. I fully expect this new journey to be filled with ‘wow’ moments that make our listeners feel like they are getting the show they deserve.” Following his ten-year professional football career, Salisbury was an NFL analyst on ESPN, and served as a consultant for the 2005 remake of “The Longest Yard.” KBME’s revised lineup as of July 9 will include Josh Innes (6:00 am – 10:00 am); “In the Trenches with Koch & Kalu” (10:00 am – 12:00 noon); Matt Thomas (12:00 noon – 3:00 pm); and Salisbury from 3:00 pm – 6:00 pm. The station will continue its broadcast partnerships with the Houston Astros, Houston Rockets, and the University of Texas football and basketball teams.

MacFarlane Donates $2 Million to NPR; $500,000 to KPCC. Opting to answer Fox News host Tucker Carlson’s comments about dishonesty in the media with his wallet, “Family Guy” creator Seth MacFarlane is making a $2 million donation to NPR and $500,000 to Los Angeles’ NPR membership station, KPCC. MacFarlane’s contribution will directly benefit NPR’s Collaborative Journalism Network, which connects NPR’s nearly 1,800 journalists so they are able to share resources and eliminate “news deserts” in the United States. An NPR spokesperson writes, “We are deeply appreciative of the generous gift from Seth MacFarlane, which will go to supporting local news coverage, allowing NPR and member stations to continue working together to tell the story of the whole country from everywhere in the country.” Southern California Public Radio president and CEO Bill Davis states, “We are deeply moved by Seth’s generous contribution to Southern California Public Radio, KPCC, and NPR. It is this local/national partnership that is the heart of our shared public service mission and we are committed to more fully realizing that mission thanks to this gift and his challenge for others to join us.” Last Thursday, Carlson stated, “If you’re looking to understand what’s actually happening in this country, always assume the opposite of whatever they’re telling you on the big news stations.” In a tweet, MacFarlane wrote that statements like Carlson’s “make me embarrassed to work for this company,” referring to Fox for whom MacFarlane has provided “Family Guy,” “American Dad,” “Cleveland,” and “Orville.” As a direct rebuke to Carlson’s remarks, MacFarlane further told his Twitter followers, “In other words, don’t think critically, don’t consult multiple news sources, and in general, don’t use your brain.”

TALKERS Founder Michael Harrison Says Fox News Channel Hosts Present “Legitimate” Point of View on the Current Border Controversy.  TALKERS publisher Michael Harrison spoke this morning (6/20) on CNN’s Headline News Channel (HLN) program “Across America with Carol Costello” about the media’s role in the current border immigration controversy (pictured above).  Costello asked Harrison for his perspective on threats by 21st Century Fox show business producers such as Seth MacFarlane (“Family Guy”) and Steve Levitan (“Modern Family”) as well as director Paul Feig who have publicly expressed “disgust” and “embarrassment” over the way Fox News Channel has been covering the family-separation issue with hosts Sean Hannity, Laura Ingraham and others showing support of President Trump’s stringent policy.  Harrison said that he doesn’t take these threats seriously and the situation will probably be resolved with the country moving on to the next issue before they could even make good on them.  If anything, Harrison said, this issue will force Trump to further tweak and define murky areas of his immigration policy.  Harrison went on to say that the Hollywood establishment “which includes show business across the board such as Broadway and what took place at the Tony Awards” is hurting its own cause as well as its business interests by speaking out so vehemently for one side in what is a highly-charged polarized situation.  Harrison stated, “Famous people whose media products are not directly involved in politics would be wise to stay out of the fray because they will only further alienate the significant segment of the public and electorate that is supportive of Trump… even to the point of strengthening its resolve.”  When asked if he thinks the potential acquisition of Fox by Walt Disney Co. or Comcast could result in the Fox News Channel modifying its conservative stand, Harrison replied, “Probably not – they are in business and it is doubtful that they would do something to diminish the formidable earnings of a viable news venue serving a large portion of the population.”  Harrison concluded, “No matter how harsh or even cruel Trump’s handling of this situation might be, there are many millions of Americans who support him on it and, thus, Fox News Channel is presenting a legitimate point of view within the highly diverse American marketplace of ideas.  If Fox were to back off on its pro-Trump stance, you can be sure other venues such as Newsmax would be more than happy to swoop in and fill the void that would be waiting to be served.”

Westwood One News’ Vietnam Retrospective Nabs Gold Medal Award. Among the five citations Westwood One News received Monday night (6/18) from the New York International Radio Festival was a gold medal award for “Pain & Pride: Remembering Vietnam – 50 Years Later,” which aired during Veterans Day weekend (November, 2017). Westwood One host/Vietnam veteran Jim Bohannon narrated “Pain & Pride.” Bohannon, who served with the 856th Radio Research Detachment in Cat Lai and Long Binh from 1967 -1968, won a NY Festival prize 30 years ago for his first “Pain & Pride news special. He comments, “I am very gratified that producer David Oziel, the Westwood One News team, and I have received this recognition. For me, there is special meaning in that we did a 20-year look back special that won the New York Festival’s Grand Award in 1988. Also, I’ll be the keynote speaker [tomorrow, Thursday, 6/21] at the Branson, Missouri reunion of my Vietnam unit, the 199th Light Infantry Brigade. It is a delightful manifestation of what Vietnam vets say to each other – ‘welcome home.’” Bohannon gave the keynote address at the Vietnam Wall Memorial in Washington in 1990; was the principal MC for the Vietnam Veterans reunion in Branson in 2002; and hosted the “Rumble” at “TALKERS 2018” less than two weeks ago (6/8) in New York City.

PPM Analysis: All-News. Managing editor Mike Kinosian presents four analyses of the performances of stations based on data from Nielsen Audio’s May PPM survey. Today’s report focuses on the all-news format. A year-to-year improvement of nine-tenths (8.8 – 9.7, 6+) enables Hubbard’s WTOP to move from second to third in Washington, DC. It is the only all-news station in a PPM-market to rank first in May 2018. Moreover, with a 9.6 (6+), it once again boasts the strongest 6+-share among its all-news peers. The category’s runner-up in all six survey periods highlighted in this analysis (“Holiday” 2017 – May 2018) is iHeartMedia Sacramento’s KFBK (6.7, 6+, May 2018). See the entire all-news overview here.

Edison Research Releases 2018 Q1 “Share of Ear” Report. The study quantifies reach and time spent with of all forms of audio. Results indicate terrestrial AM and FM radio remains the centerpiece of audio. Among nuggets from the quarterly report as summarized on the Westwood One website by director of content marketing Lauren Vetrano: AM/FM accounts for 47% of all audio time spent among persons 18+. “Owned music” is next at 12%, followed by YouTube videos (9%); ad-free SiriusXM (5%) and TV music channels (5%). AM/FM’s share has been consistently strong throughout the last few years. Edison reports AM/FM radio’s daily reach also remains stable, while Pandora continues to see losses in share and reach; Spotify has grown 36% (3% to 4.1%). Since 2016, Pandora’s “Share of Ear” dropped 17%. From 2016 to 2018, millennials 18-34 daily reach jumped 39%. Daily reach among 25-54s increased 52%. In addition, podcasting’s daily reach is growing, especially among younger audiences, with listening share +39% in two years to 15.2% among those 18-34 and +52% to 9.7% in the same timeframe among 25-54s.

Salem Radio Network Sets Midterm Election Coverage. With its vice president of news & talk programming Tom Tradup commenting, “There is unprecedented interest in this year’s midterms,” Salem Radio Network will feed live Mike Gallagher-anchored coverage on (Tuesday) November 6 beginning at 7:00 pm (ET). Adding their perspective as well that night will be SRN host Hugh Hewitt; White House correspondent Greg Clugston; Senate correspondent Linda Kenyon; Congress correspondent Wally Hindes; Pentagon/military affairs correspondent Colonel Robert Maginnis; and SRN analyst/former presidential candidate Gary Bauer.

TALKERS News Notes. Having overseen the programming content strategy for 54 radio stations in Radio One’s 15 markets and Reach Media‘s nationally syndicated programming since January 2007, senior vice president of programming content Jay Stevens will leave the company when his contract expires the middle of next month. Immediately prior to joining Radio One, Stevens spent 16 years as vice president of programming for CBS Radio ….. It’s a busy week for Westwood One “Sterling on Sunday” host Walter (Sabo) Sterling who is filling in for Westwood One teammate Jim Bohannon tonight (Wednesday, 6/20) and tomorrow night (Thursday, 6/21). Sterling will be originating those shows from Entercom Pittsburgh news/talk KDKA-AM. Then, in approximately two weeks (7/5 and 7/6), he will guest host for Cumulus Media Little Rock news/talk KARN-FM afternoon drive talent Doc Washburn ….. Chicago media writer Robert Feder (RobertFeder.com) is first to report that veteran “Windy City” news anchor Dave Stewart (WGN, WLS-AM, WIND) will retire at the end of the month … Word from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s Rodney Ho is that Elly Yu is remaining in the public news/talk arena but shifting from Atlanta Public Schools-owned WABE to American University’s WAMU as a general assignment reporter.

ABC Radio To Air Four July 4th Specials. All will be three hours in length for broadcast over the upcoming holiday weekend. In “America’s Pastimes,” ABC News Radio correspondent Aaron Katersky enjoys the pastimes that comprise a classic American summer such as the back porch, barbeque, sports, and a day at the beach. Katersky will explore not only the traditional American summer hobbies, but also those that are new. ABC News Radio correspondent Alex Stone hosts “Great American Car Show” in which he examines America’s love affair with the automobile. He tours the presidential limousine that John F. Kennedy was in on that fateful day in Dallas; visits an assembly line making the Ford Mustang (pictured at left); and ponders a future with flying cars. Stone will take listeners on a tour down historic Route 66, do donuts with a Hollywood stunt car driver and learn about the latest in car technology. “Red, White and True-Blue Country Fan Salute” is hosted by Dustin Lynch, who reveals the special relationship between country artists and their fans. Among those included are Jason Aldean, Kelsea Ballerini, Luke Bryan, Florida Georgia Line, Little Big Town, and Darius Rucker. They discuss their most memorable and strangest fan encounters, how they engage with fans on social media and what sets country fans apart from partisans of other musical genres. Eddie Money-hosted “Red, White & Rock 2018” celebrates cities, artists, and songs that comprise the landscape of American rock and roll. It will feature music from Aerosmith, Allman Brothers Band, Cheap Trick, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Tom Petty, Bob Seger, Bruce Springsteen, Van Halen, and ZZ Top.

Coleman Insights To Present Podcast Engagement Study. Results will be shared next month (7/25) in Philadelphia at Podcast Movement as part of the conference’s Industry Track. The study will reportedly offer second-by-second data in an analysis on listener reactions to “The Ben & Ashley Almost Famous Podcast,” hosted by former contestants from ABC-TV’s “The Bachelor.” Coleman Insights executive vice president/senior consultant Sam Milkman notes, “We will go well beyond the simple measures of listener and download counts that podcasters are used to seeing and examine content engagement. By looking at how the audience responds to specific content, podcasters can more effectively develop engaging content.” Podcast Movement co-founder Dan Franks remarks, “One of the biggest challenges for a podcaster is to figure out who their listener is, and what their listener wants. Coleman’s solutions for this problem are very exciting for us as organizers, as we get to help spread the word throughout the entire podcast community this July.” Milkman will present the findings with John Boyne and will be joined by iHeartRadio senior vice president of podcasting Chris Peterson.

For The Record. An item in yesterday’s TALKERS (Tuesday, 6/19) noted that “CBS World News Roundup” earned a “gold” medal in the New York Festivals International Radio Program Awards; “CBS World News Roundup” actually won a “bronze.” We apologize for the error.

 

NYC’s “Alt 92.3” Adds Segall, Stone. In two separate moves, Entercom New York’s WNYL “Alt 92.3” names Bryce Segall music director/evening talent and Dan Stone imaging director. Segall begins in less than two weeks (Monday, 7/2); Stone starts next Monday (6/25). Entercom New York regional president and market manager Susan Larkin comments, “Bryce has continuously displayed the ability to be innovative in the programming end of our industry; we are excited to add his talents. Dan’s previous imaging and voiceover experience will pay great dividends as he joins us in the same capacity.” According to Segall, “New York City is an iconic pillar of alternative culture. It has long deserved a radio station that not only pays tribute, but adds to that legacy. I am looking forward to working with the ‘Alt 92.3’ team to develop an outlet that truly adds value to the thriving, pre-existing music community.” Stone notes, “Helping to build an ‘Alt’ radio brand for New York City is a dream come true. This station’s passion for the format is unequalled; I can’t wait to wake up and be a part of that.” Segall previously was assistant program director/air personality for Seattle’s KNDD “107.7 The End,” and label manager for Mad Zoo. Stone was an imaging contributor/consultant for Cumulus Media Chicago. WNYL is the former WBMP – its calls were changed last Tuesday (6/12). Among persons 6+ in Nielsen Audio’s May 2018 sweep, the station ranked #19 (2.0).

Bevvy of Beasley Media Group Philly Activities. Several community-oriented activities undertaken by Beasley Media Group Philadelphia seemingly converged all at once. Many employees at the cluster were involved in its recent “Best Day of Caring event to help the City of Philadelphia Community Life Improvement Program (CLIP). Team members from WMMR “93.3 Everything That Rocks”; WMGK “102.9 Philadelphia’s Classic Rock”;  adult hits WBEN-FM “95.7 Ben FM”; sports talk WPEN-FM “97.5 The Fanatic”; sports talk WTEL “610 ESPN”; and WWDB “Talk 860” divided into two shifts to clean up a block in the city’s Frankford section. While there, they picked up trash and removed graffiti to help support the organization’s beautification project. Vice president and market manager Joe Bell comments, “This is truly what being a part of a local community is all about. I could not be more proud of our employees for paying it forward and helping our beloved city. I am proud to be on their team.” Meanwhile, last Friday (6/15), WMGK’s John DeBella raised over $143,000 for local veterans as part of his 13th annual radiothon at the National Constitution Center. Over the past decade, the station has raised over one million dollars to support vets in need. Among those donating items used in a series of eBay auctions that occurred in conjunction with the radiothon were Def Leppard’s Rick Allen, Jimmy Buffett, Phil Collins, Eagles, Billy Joel, and Yes. Former leader of Creedence Clearwater Revival, John Fogerty, called the station to voice his support. The following day (Saturday, 6/16), the 13th annual WMMR “I Bleed For Preston & Steve Blood Drive” produced 1,128 units of blood to benefit The American Red Cross Penn-Jersey Blood Services Region. Listeners showed up during a time when the American Red Cross needs blood the most and they received “Preston & Steve” T-shirts and “I Bleed For Preston & Steve pint glass. Hundreds of donors were randomly selected to receive a pair of tickets to a summer concert. Free food and samples were also provided. Thus far, the annual event has collected nearly 15,000 pints of blood.

O’Brien Inks Multi-Year WCSX Extension. Four-year WCSX “94.7 The Classic Rock Station” morning drive personality (Big) Jim O’Brien signs a multi-year deal to continue hosting “Big Jim’s Houseon the Beasley Media Group Detroit outlet. Vice president/market manager Mac Edwards comments, “It is really a pleasure to be associated with Jim and the healthy combination of creativity, wit, and passion for cars and classic rock he brings to his morning listeners in the ‘Motor City.’ Jim’s work to establish Glenn Frey Drive in Royal Oak and soon Bob Seger Boulevard in Ann Arbor; his tireless efforts on behalf of veterans; and his respect for all things Detroit prove he is an extraordinary ambassador for both WCSX and the city he calls home.” Program director JT Tarrants states, “I have been a ‘Big Jim’ fan since I arrived here. We are so glad to have him buttoned up to lead our morning show into the future.” O’Brien adds, “It is an honor to be part of the Beasley Media Group family in Detroit. I look forward to continue entertaining our dedicated ‘Motor City’ listeners for years to come.” O’Brien has been with WCSX since 2002 and is joined on the morning show by co-host Erin V and producer Ryan Logan.

San Andres Ascends to “Z-90” APD. XHTZ “Z-90 – Today’s Hit Music,” the Comunicación XERSA-owned mainstream CHR covering San Diego, promotes music director Kat San Andres to assistant program director. Program director R Dub comments, “It is team members behind the spotlight like Kat San Andres who are responsible for the incredible success of ‘Z-90’ and the other brands in this building. Kat’s relentless work ethic and passion for the business helps propel ‘Z-90’ forward every day; expanding her role here was overdue. Add to that, she is the ‘Z-90’ listener; has a great set of ears; and is a lot cooler than I will ever be.” With the station since 2004, San Andres remarks, “Fourteen years later, I am still in love with this career. I am always so thankful and grateful that I decided to take a risk to follow my dreams because it has led me to this wonderful adventure. I am so excited for this opportunity and cannot wait to start this new chapter.” Meanwhile, Kalyna Astrinos of San Diego’s KGTV-TV joins “Z-90” for weekends. She and R Dub worked together at iHeartMedia Los Angeles in 2009.

More Music Radio News and Career Moves. After 16 years in the CBS Radio Los Angeles – now Entercom – cluster, John Michael resigns. During his tenure, he was assistant program director/music director at mainstream CHR KAMP “97.1 Amp Radio”; music director for adult hits KCBS-FM “93.1 Jack FM’: and music coordinator/weekend air talent at alternative KROQ ….. Digital program director for iHeartMedia San Francisco Matty Staudt is elevated to iHeartRadio’s vice president of podcast programming. Staudt has launched more than 30 original locally-focused podcasts and hosts iHeartRadio’s “Access Podcast.” In 2008, he became part of the startup team and first director of content and community for the podcasting app Stitcher before moving to Premiere Networks as a consulting producer. A teacher at the Academy of Art University, Staudt will report directly to senior vice president of podcasting Chris Peterson …..Exiting Saga Columbus adult contemporary WSNY “Sunny 95” after 24 years is morning talent Dino Tripodis. Co-host Stacy McKay is the interim replacement named by program director Michelle Matthews …..  Morning drivers Chaz & AJ of Connoisseur Media New Haven’s WPLR “99.1 Connecticut’s #1 Rock Station” raised $18,000 for Connecticut based “Homes for the Brave.” WPLR operations manager Keith Dakin states, “It was truly inspiring to look at a packed house of people who were there not only for laughs but to help out a great organization making a difference in our community. ‘Homes for the Brave’ is doing great things in our state and we are so happy to write them this check.” Chaz adds, “With over a million U.S. veterans at risk of homelessness, this is the least we could do. It is up to us to help take care of those that gave for their country.” All money raised will go to help build homes, teach vocational training, and work with homeless veterans ….. The co-host of Cumulus Media’s “Nash Nights Live” – Elaina Smith – teams up with Nash Country Daily for an ongoing conversation about women in country music. Each article will feature a female county artist with an accompanying opinion piece, interview, podcast, or playlist. Profiled female artists will be featured on 90 Cumulus Media websites and more than 130 radio stations nationwide, with a reach of 400,000 people on Twitter and 180,000 on Facebook.

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

| June 19, 2018

New York Festivals International Radio Program Awards Names ‘World’s Best Radio Programs’ – Westwood One and CBS News Radio Win Gold Medals. Last night at New York City’s Manhattan Penthouse, the New York Festivals International Radio Program Awards honoring the World’s Best Radio Programs were announced. The NYF’s Grand Jury awarded global networks and content creators from 31 countries, celebrating trophy-winning digital content, podcasts and audiobooks, live events, dramas and documentaries, breaking news coverage, multi-genre music specials, sound art, and promos from around the globe.  New York Festivals VP and executive director Rose Anderson says, “As the radio landscape evolves to accommodate the shift in the way individuals consume audio, New York Festivals Radio Awards is at the forefront celebrating all popular forms of audio content available today.”  In the News and Talk/Interview category, gold medal winners included: CBS News Radio for “CBS World News Roundup,” Westwood One for “Pain & Pride: Remembering Vietnam – 50 Years Later,” and National Press Club for “The Kalb Report.”  See the entire list of winners in all categories here.

Former Blackhawk Eddie Olczyk to Join WMVP, Chicago’s ‘Kap & Company.’ Former Chicago Blackhawk center Eddie Olczyk will join WMVP’s David Kaplan two days per week (generally Mondays and Fridays) during the 9:00 am to 12:00 noon “Kap & Company” program.  “ESPN 1000” VP and general manager Jim Pastor states, “What fans may not realize is that Eddie is not only a legendary hockey and horse racing broadcaster, but having grown up here, he’s also a huge fan of all Chicago sports teams.  Pairing him twice a week with his good friend David Kaplan will give him a chance to put those passions on display for ESPN listeners.”

WMAL, Washington Legend Frank Harden Dies at 95.  One half of the team that ruled the morning drive airwaves on WMAL-AM, Washington has died at age 95.  Frank Harden, described as the straight man to Jackson Weaver on the long-running Harden and Weaver morning program died on Friday (6/15) at his home in Chevy Chase, Maryland. The show ran from 1960 to 1992 when Weaver died.  Harden continued on the air with Tim Brant and Andy Parks as co-hosts until 1998.  Read the Washington Post obit here.

Bo Brown to Lead Cumulus Beaumont, Texas.  Radio management pro Bo Brown is joining Cumulus Media as the new VP and market manager for the Beaumont, Texas cluster that includes sports talk simulcast KIKR-AM/KBED-AM “Sports Radio 1450AM/1510AM,” as well as three sister music outlets.  He was most recently with Rhino Marketing in Houston.  Brown says, “I’m excited about getting back to my roots and coming home to where I started my radio career.  I want to thank Mary Berner, Bob Walker, and Mark Sullivan for this opportunity.  I’m looking forward to being a part of an already very talented team and helping them to become even more successful.”

TALKERS News Notes.  WHP, Harrisburg afternoon drive talk show host Ken Matthews is a busy man.  Over the next 10 days he’s pulling a lot of double duty.  In addition to his regular show on WHP, he’s filling in for late morning host Dom Giordano on WPHT, Philadelphia a couple of days this week.  Then on Friday (6/22), he’s sitting in for Premiere NetworksRush Limbaugh.  The following week he’s back on WPHT filling in for morning drive host Chris Stigall June 27-30…..WCBM, Baltimore staffer Nino Mangione’s campaign for state delegate is the subject of an investigation by the Maryland state prosecutor’s office.  According to a report in the Baltimore Sun, Mangione’s work as the webmaster at his family’s radio station and the website’s reporting on Mangione’s campaign could be interpreted as an in-kind donation to his campaign, says a complaint filed with the state. The state prosecutor’s office doesn’t comment on the status of investigations and only reveals details if charges are filed.  Mangione had hosted a weekly, Friday night radio program but ended that show in April after filing for the campaign…..Hubbard Radio’s WTOP, Washington is honored by the Institute for Excellence in Sales with its “Innovation in Sales” award.  WTOP director of national and federal sales Jeffrey Wolinsky says, “With a desirable audience, WTOP’s sales staff continues to grow its value to local, regional, and national clients through custom marketing solutions that begin with the clients’ needs and end with continual renewals as 91% of the companies that invest at the super key account level renew each year!”…..Pictured below is nationally syndicated GCN host and TALKERS Heavy Hundred member Dr. Daliah Wachs (right) celebrating her 47th birthday with a party at her Las Vegas home on Sunday (6/17).  Pictured celebrating the event are KMZQ, Las Vegas personality Heidi Harris (left) and KDWN, Las Vegas news/program director John Shaffer (center).  Word from Las Vegas is that Harris and Wachs have been bringing down the houses at a number of local events with their dynamic singing act! Wach’s show is carried locally on KDWN.

Illegal Immigration Enforcement, Trump vs Merkel, Trump-Russia Investigation/Roger Stone Allegation, Inspector General’s FBI-Clinton Probe Report, Trump Trade Wars/Additional China Tariffs, Audi Emissions Scandal, and MLB Action Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (6/18). The Trump administration’s illegal immigration enforcement policies and the controversy over separating children from parents; President Trump’s criticism of Germany’s immigration policy and his relationship with Angela Merkel; the investigation into possible connections between Trump campaign operatives and Russian agents and the related allegations against former Trump adviser Roger Stone, the inspector general’s report on the FBI’s Hillary Clinton email server probe; Trump’s placing of tariffs on foreign goods, the fear of a trade war, and addition tariffs added to Chinese goods; Audi’s CEO accused in new emissions scandal; and Major League Baseball action among top news/talk stories yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

 

 

Music Radio News and Career Moves.  A partnership between Sun Broadcast Group and Alpha Media brings the weekend countdown program, “The Hit List with Fitz,” to more than 20 of Alpha’s country stations.  This addition means the program is heard on more than 100 affiliate stations each week.  Fitz says, “We are ecstatic about our new partnership with Alpha Media across their whole country platform.  Scott Mahalick has been an important creative partner and mentor of mine for over a decade and when Mahalick and I collaborate, crazy stuff happens! Together we aren’t afraid to take risks.  It’s about to get fun again!”…..Envision Networks announces the panelists participating in its June 27 webinar on programming underperforming station for success using 24/7 formats.  Taking part will be Howard Kroeger of Kroeger Media, creator of the HANK FM and BOB FM formats; Brian Burns, creator of the brand new innovative No Borders Radio bilingual CHR format; Mike Marino, legendary producer and creator of Jammin’ Radio and MOOD FM formats; George Gimarc, the creator of Today’s Comedy Network and Stand Up Rock; and Neal Sabin of MeTV-FM fame.  The panel will share the processes behind formatting, imaging, and marketing a 24/7 format. The webinar begins at 2:00 pm ET…..CMT personality Cody Alan recently hosted the latest “Story Behind The Songs” event in the Bahamas featuring Broken Bow Records’ award-winning artist Jason Aldean and rising country star Dustin Lynch.  The four-day getaway at the Sandals Royal Bahamian was held from June 13-16 and included live performances on the beach from the artists, as well as personal stories from the road, which were also broadcast live from paradise on “CMT After MidNite with Cody Alan”…..The fourth annual country music talent search conducted by Cumulus Media is getting underway. The “NASH Next 2018” contest began in more than 54 markets across the United States including: Dallas, New York, Atlanta, Detroit and Nashville.  The winner of the four-month-long national competition will receive a record deal under the Big Machine Label Group.  The “NASH Next 2017” winner, Radio Romance, released their debut single, “Weekend,” in April 2018 and cracked the top 50 country charts their first week on the radio.  They also appeared at CMA Fest this June and will start their Summer/Fall tour this August.

Monday, June 18, 2018

| June 18, 2018

NAB Pushing for Relaxed Ownership Regs. The National Association of Broadcasters is asking the Federal Communications Commission to modernize what it calls the “outdated radio ownership rules” as part of the quadrennial media ownership review expected to take place later this year.  The NAB states that the last change in ownership rules was part of the 1996 de-regulation of the industry and that since that time, competitors such as SiriusXM and the various digital audio services were born and have changed the audio media landscape.  Specifically, the NAB is suggesting the FCC consider the following: For station owners in the top 75 Nielsen Audio markets, raise the cap to up to eight FM signals and put no limit on the number of AM stations it can operate.  In the markets smaller than the top 75, it suggests there be no restrictions on the number of FM or AM stations a single entity can operate.  In explaining its request, the NAB writes, “The Commission’s goal of fostering audio programming ‘tailored to the needs and interests of specific local markets’ must account for today’s reality: tailoring now occurs on the basis of specific listeners, not just on the basis of local radio markets.  The FCC’s approach to regulating free OTA radio must reflect today’s competitive audio market in which consumers have access to a virtually infinite number of ‘stations’ tailored to their specific interests.  Continuing to insist that the existing radio ownership limits are necessary because local stations only compete among themselves defies reality and is contrary to law.  Indeed, the FCC’s current regulatory framework simply ignores a large portion of the listening and advertising equation.  The notion of what constitutes a competitor to radio stations must include audio outlets that consumers in local markets are listening to and the outlets that advertisers use.”

WGOW-FM, Chattanooga Morning Host Jeff Styles Wounded, Charged in Road Rage Incident. Chattanooga morning drive talk host Jeff Styles has been charged with aggravated assault and vandalism after a Friday afternoon road rage incident that left him with a gun-shot wound to his arm. WRCB-TV, Chattanooga reports that Styles – morning drive co-host on Cumulus Media’s news/talk WGOW-FM, Chattanooga – and fellow motorist Nickolas Bullington were involved in a road rage incident late Friday afternoon (6/15) that ended after Styles allegedly attacked Bullington’s car with a “military grade tomahawk” and Bullington responded by shooting Styles in the arm with a handgun.  Styles was treated at a local hospital and arrested the following day. The WRCB-TV report includes a statement from Styles’ lawyer alleging Bullington was the aggressor and Styles the victim.  Styles hosts “The Morning Press” with co-host Jim Reynolds and program and news director Kevin West.

Robert Feder Provides Glimpse Behind the Ratings Woes at WGN, Chicago.  Windy City media maven Robert Feder publishes an exclusive report on what some of the station’s talent are saying about the state of Tribune’s venerable WGN-AM as it moves from the Tribune Tower to brand new studios at 303 Wacker Drive.  It’s no secret that WGN has suffered a long trend of dwindling ratings as measured by Nielsen Audio’s PPM surveys, and Feder’s story offers a look at what at least a few of the station’s personalities are feeling about the situation.  Read it here.

ESPN Audio Now Available on iHeartRadio. This move adds ESPN Audio’s networks and on-demand content to the iHeartRadio digital platform.  The multi-year deal with iHeartMedia allows users to livestream the ESPN Radio Network shows – “Golic and Wingo,” Dan Le Batard, Stephen A. Smith, etc. – the O&O’s in New York, Chicago and L.A., ESPN-affiliated stations, live play-by-play events, and ESPN’s roster of podcasts.  ESPN VP, Audio and Talent Traug Keller says, “We are consistently looking for new ways to give fans access to ESPN Audio’s tremendous content.  iHeartRadio, with its expansive network and reach, will help us bring new listeners into the fold and give current fans yet another way to enjoy their sports content, anytime, anywhere.”

National Radio Institute Begins Today at University of Tennessee. Today begins the Tennessee Association of Broadcasters Radio Talent Institute at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville.  At this session, students from four different universities will learn from broadcast pros from Patrick Communications, Midwest Communications, Stonecom Radio, Entercom, Cumulus MediaScripps Radio, 5 Star Radio/Saga Communications, Cromwell Communications, Thunderbolt Broadcasting, and others.  The course is led by industry professionals and facilitated by the Tennessee Association of Broadcasters and the University of Tennessee’s College of Communications and Information and was spearheaded by radio consultant Dan Vallie.  The TAB Radio Talent Institute is the fourth of eight Radio Talent Institutes this summer from the National Radio Talent System, next are Confer Radio Talent Institute at Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania; Hubbard Radio Talent Institute at Central Washington University; KBA WKU Radio Talent Institute at Western Kentucky University, and the MBA Radio Talent Institute at Northwest Missouri State University.

TALKERS News Notes. The case of Nielsen Audio v. Bubba the Love Sponge was supposed to begin in trial court today, but the start of the eagerly awaited legal face-off will not happen until July 23 – that is, unless the two parties come to a settlement.  Nielsen’s complaint that Bubba the Love Sponge damaged its reputation by tampering with the PPM survey in the Tampa market goes back more than two-and-a-half years. Although a settlement is always a possibility, it seems unlikely Bubba would concede anything after spending as much on legal fees as he has up to this point.  Nielsen is seeking $1 million in damages.  Federal Judge James Whittemore offered no reason for the change in trial start dates but says it’s expected to last five to seven days…..cabana, the digital audio division of AdLarge Media, is announcing an exclusive ad sales representation deal for the newly launched true crime podcast network Murder.ly. AdLarge co-founder and co-CEO Cathy Csukas says, “True crime dramas are sought-after and in high demand among listeners and advertisers.  We’re proud to represent the titles in Murder.ly and bring this exclusive opportunity to cabana advertisers.”

Three Join Broadcasters Foundation Board of Directors. The Broadcasters Foundation of America elects Wendy McMahon, president of the ABC Owned Television Stations Group, and Charlie Weiss, publisher of New Bay Media’s TV Sector Brands, to its board of directors, and names Dennis Lyle, president and chief executive officer of the Illinois Broadcasters Association, an officer and vice president.  The new directors and Lyle were voted in during the board meeting that took place in New York City last week.  In a related story, at the TALKERS 2018: Full Speed Ahead! conference held in New York City on June 8, WPG, Atlantic City morning host and Heavy Hundred member Harry Hurley (pictured below at left) donated $2,000 to the Broadcasters Foundation of America on behalf of his successful Harry Hurley Charitable Foundation.  Foundation president Jim Thompson (right) accepted the check.  This marked the third year in a row that Hurley has made a large donation to the Broadcasters Foundation.

Trump-Russia Investigation/Roger Stone Allegation, Illegal Immigration Enforcement, Inspector General’s FBI-Clinton Probe Report, Trump Trade Wars, Trump-Kim Jong Un Meeting, and MLB Action Among Top News/Talk Stories Over the Weekend. The investigation into possible connections between Trump campaign operatives and Russian agents and the allegation Roger Stone met with a Russian promising “dirt” on Hillary Clinton; the controversy over the treatment of illegals with young children; the inspector general’s report on the FBI’s investigation of the Hillary Clinton email server case; the tariffs being levied by the U.S. and retaliation by China and concerns about a global trade war; President Trump’s meeting with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un; and Major League Baseball action were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio over the weekend, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. Rock programmer Mat Bates has reportedly exited Cumulus Media’s legendary triple A KFOG, San Francisco where he was serving as program director.…..In the Reno market, Lotus Communications names Tina Smash morning drive host at classic rock KOZZ.  Smash is taking over the morning host role from operations manager and program director Jave Patterson who will assume the afternoon drive show hosting duties on Lotus’ sister active rock KDOT “Rock 104.5.”…..On-air pro Diana DeVille joins Strategic International Ministries’ country KWSV, Simi Valley, California “99.1 The Ranch” to host the midday program that was hosted by departed personality Mese Smith.  Station programmer Michael Raffety says, “It’s always hard replacing a strong personality that listeners have grown to love, like Mese Smith.  But if anyone can carry on the success, it’s Diana Deville. She’s loaded with great ideas and has a genuine love for the country music format and listener.  I know the audience will grow to love Diana as much as they do Mese.”…..Some of the winners at the North Carolina Association of Broadcasters awards luncheon held last Thursday (6/14) include Capitol Broadcasting’s hot AC WRAL-FM, Raleigh-Durham “MIX 101.5,” winner of the Radio Station of the Year honor in the large market category. Station PD Michele Williams says, “We at ‘MIX 101.5’ are honored to accept the North Carolina Association of Broadcasters’ radio station of the year award for 2017.  We thank this amazing community for allowing us to give back through events like our Radiothon for Duke Children’s Hospital, Interfaith Food Shuttle’s Back Pack Buddies Mediathon and our annual Christmas Choir Competition that supports local schools’ music programs.  It’s a privilege to serve you, our listeners, and we look forward to what’s to come in 2018 and beyond.”  Other winners were Beasley Media Group’s hip hop WZFX-FM, Fayetteville, which took home the Station of the Year honor for medium market stations, as well as WPEG, Charlotte “Power 98” evening personality Ya Girl Nikki who was honored with Large Market Personality of the Year.

Friday, June 15, 2018

| June 15, 2018

Former Gambino Family Crime Head John A. Gotti (John Gotti, Jr) Is This Week’s Guest on Harrison Podcast. There is a lot of media interest this week in the late John Gotti, the infamous boss of the powerful New York-based Gambino crime family who died in prison in 2002 while serving a life sentence. Two major productions are being released depicting the story of the legendary mobster — one on TV, the other on film — offering up a double dose of a larger-than-life figure known, among other names, as the “Dapper Don.” A&E’s two-part biography documentary “Gotti: Godfather & Son” began airing this past weekend and the movie “Gotti,” starring John Travolta opens this Friday (6/15). The film dramatizes the rise and fall of the infamous criminal and the relationship he shared with his son who succeeded him as the acting head of the Gambino family until he broke away to live a legitimate life as a businessman, husband, and father. The movie is based on a book penned by Gotti’s son, John A. Gotti (also known as John Gotti, Jr or Junior Gotti) titled, Shadow of My Father (Phoenix Media 2015). Junior Gotti is this week’s guest on the award-winning PodcastOne series, “The Michael Harrison Interview.” Harrison and Gotti discuss the Travolta movie as well as the real relationship between the father and son, in addition to delving into the unusual nature of the often-fragile code of honor that exists among organized gangsters. Check it out! To listen to the entire podcast, please click here or click on the player box marked “The Michael Harrison Interview” located in the right-hand column on every page of Talkers.com.

Weekly Golf Show Debuts on WFAN, New York. New York sports talker WFAN is launching a weekly, one-hour golf program called “Talking Golf,” hosted by sports media pro Ann Liguori.  It will air from 7:00 am to 8:00 am beginning this Sunday through September 2 and the inaugural show will be live from the 2018 U.S. Open in Shinnecock Hills, New York.  Entercom New York VP of programming Mark Chernoff states, “As New York’s flagship sports station, we are committed to providing fans with the most engaging content from their favorite sports.  Ann’s golf expertise will add a distinct layer to this show and having the inaugural broadcast live from the U.S. Open will offer our listeners an up close experience to one of golf’s biggest events.”  Liguori covers the major U.S. golf tournaments, including the Masters, U.S. Open and PGA championship for WFAN and CBS Sports Radio Network. In addition, she contributes columns to WFAN.com throughout the golf season.

Sales in the New Talk Media Landscape.  Radio sales pro Al Herskovitz writes today about his experience chatting with fellow media sales practitioners at last Friday’s TALKERS magazine conference held in New York City.  Herskovitz says, “The challenge to the sales folk is how to sell advertising in this ever-evolving, high-tech environment.  Ratings, as we once knew them, have lost their value, even if they exist at all.”  And as for the rates one can charge, Herskovitz says, “And how does a sales person determine the rates?  By simply making them up and seeing what the reaction will be.  As of this time there is no reasonable, statistical information to know what to charge.  Most of the gang I spoke with use their old rate cards as the basis for the prices they want to present.  Then it becomes the floor upon which to negotiate with the potential advertiser.”  Read Herskovitz’s piece here.

Trump-Kim Jong Un Summit Top News/Talk Story for Week of June 11-15.  The summit meeting between President Trump and North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un was the most-talked-about story on news/talk radio this week, landing atop the Talkers TenTM.  At #2 this week was the Hillary Clinton email server investigation report.  Coming in at #3 was the G-7 meeting and President Trump’s spat with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, followed by the Tuesday primaries and Mark Sanford’s loss at #4.  The Talkers TenTM is a weekly chart of the top stories and people discussed on news/talk radio during the week and is the result of ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.  It is published every Friday at Talkers.com. View this week’s entire chart here.

TALKERS News Notes. San Diego sports talk personality Dan Sileo – heard in late mornings on Entercom’s new sports talk outlet KWFN-FM, San Diego “97.3 FM The Fan” – will be doing a daily, live segment with CBS Sports Radio Network superstar Jim Rome as part of his show…..Chicago media writer Robert Feder reports that Neil Fiorito is appointed to the position of overnight traffic voice on Entercom’s all-news WBBM-AM/WCFS-FM.  Fiorito has been a part-time traffic reporter for the station since 2009.  Traffic operations director Kevin Scott says in a memo to staffers, “Neil’s reports are conversational and authoritative, so listeners can trust the information he provides.  Behind the scenes Neil has one of the best attitudes ever.”…..A joint marketing agreement between MyNorth.com, Traverse Magazine and Blarney Stone Broadcasting is bringing the foodie talk radio show “Lick the Plate” to five Northern Michigan radio stations in the Traverse City and Petoskey markets.  The feature will air during afternoon drive and be repeated in evenings.  Program host David Boylan says, “This is an incredible opportunity for me to expand the reach of the show in Northern Michigan.  The culinary scene extends throughout the Northern half of the state and the talent driving it is incredible. This is also going to be a huge bonus for my guests who will now have a much larger audience listening in on their story.”  “Lick the Plate” also airs on CKLW, Detroit-Windsor “93.9 The River.”…..Public news/talk WUSF, Tampa – operated by WUSF Public Media – names Jessica Meszaros to a position in the WUSF newsroom and on the “Morning Edition” news team.  Meszaros says about her new position, “‘Morning Edition’ starts the day and gives so many people their first news of the day and we take that responsibility very seriously. I’m looking forward to exploring the Tampa Bay area and reporting on stories that keep local listeners intrigued, inspired and informed.”

Music Radio News and Career Moves. A talent shuffle takes place at Hubbard Radio’s St. Louis station group.  The duo “Mason and Remy” – Mason Schreader and Zach “Remy” Hoesly – returns to the market after doing mornings at iHeartMedia’s country WEBG, Chicago “Big 95.5.”  They are taking over the afternoon drive show on Hubbard’s WIL-FM “New Country 92.3.”  As a result of their return, the “Stacey and Jonah” program – hosted by Stacey Boyer and Jonah Griss-Bush – moves from WIL-FM over to sister adult hits WARH-FM “106.5 The Arch” for afternoons.  Scott Roddy programs both stations and he says, “Today is a banner day – a historical day – for Hubbard St. Louis.  It is an honor to work with talent of this caliber.  Today’s announcement cements that Hubbard continues to be the platinum standard for LOCAL broadcasting.”…..Pictured below is the nationally syndicated country morning show “Ty, Kelly, and Chuck” with the band Little Big Town.  The group stopped by the show to promote their new tune, “Summer Fever!”  From left to right are: Ty Bentli, Little Big Town, Kelly Ford, and Chuck Wicks.

Round Four of May 2018 PPM Data Released. The fourth and final round of ratings information from Nielsen Audio’s May 2018 PPM survey has been released for 12 markets, including: Austin, Raleigh, Indianapolis, Milwaukee, Nashville, Providence, Norfolk, Greensboro, West Palm Beach, Jacksonville, Memphis, and Hartford. Nielsen’s May 2018 survey period covered April 26 – May 23. See all the numbers from subscribing stations here. Meanwhile, managing editor Mike Kinosian (Kinosian@Talkers.com) provides his “Takeaways” from all 12 of these PPM-markets.

TWELVE TAKEAWAYS

Austin

Spoken-Word Formats – Not only does KUT tack three-tenths onto April’s +.7 (7.9 – 8.2, 6+), the University of Texas at Austin-owned news/talker progresses from second to first. This (8.2) is its highest 6+-share since 9.0 in November 2016. A combined +1.0 in January and February (6.5 – 7.2 – 7.5, 6+), KUT previously was -1.4 as the result of three straight decreases (7.9 – 7.6 – 6.8 – 6.5, 6+). Its November loss of three-tenths ended three successive gains that netted +1.8 (6.1 – 6.5 – 7.1 – 7.9, 6+). Even though it picks up one-tenth – after dropping one-half share in April – Emmis news/talk KLBJ-AM “News Radio 590 AM” (4.6 – 4.1 – 4.2, 6+) backslides from ninth to tenth. Three straight increases by KLBJ-AM prior to April’s -.5 resulted in a +1.8 (2.8 – 4.1 – 4.3 – 4.6, 6+). Immediately in advance of that streak, “News Radio 590 AM” was -1.3 in four straight decreases (4.1 – 3.9 – 3.7 – 3.2 – 2.8, 6+). A one-tenth gain to 1.8 (#19 to #18, 6+) by Genuine Austin Radio sports talk KTXX “The Horn” curtails three straight down or flat trends that accounted for a -.3 (1.8 – 1.7 – 1.7 – 1.5, 6+). Unchanged at #24, iHeartMedia’s similarly-programmed KVET-AM “1300 AM The Zone” is without an increase for the fourth time in a row, (.6 – .6 – .5 – .3 – .3, 6+).

Austin Music Formats – Completely erasing its combined March and April -.6 (4.3 – 3.8 – 3.7, 6+) with a May +.7    to 4.4 (6+), Emmis’ KLBJ-FM “93.7 The Rock of Austin” cracks the top ten (#12 to #9). Moreover, this (4.4) is its best 6+-showing since 4.5 in November 2016. Regional Mexican cluster-mate KLZT-FM “La Z 107.1” (4.7 – 5.3, eighth to fifth, 6+) and Spanish contemporary KLZT-HD2 (3.0 – 3.6, #13 to #12, 6+) each improve by six-tenths. The 5.3 for KLZT-FM is its highest 6+-stat since November 2017’s 5.4. After being #1 the past four sweeps, adult hits sibling KBPA “103.5 Bob FM” relinquishes all of April’s -1.0 and another four-tenths as it segues to #2 (8.9 – 7.5, -1.4, 6+). A November gain of one-half share halted three down or flat trends for a collective -.4 (8.7 – 8.7 – 8.6 – 8.3, 6+). Before picking up one-tenth in March (2018), “Bob” was -.6 (February); +1.7 (January); and -1.7 (“Holiday” 2017). Following four straight upticks that netted a +1.7 (3.9 – 4.6 – 5.1 – 5.3 – 5.6, 6+), iHeartMedia-owned KASE “Austin’s #1 For New Country” drops one-half share to 5.1 (sixth to eighth, 6+). When KASE racked up a +.7 in January, it ended three consecutive decreases for an overall -1.2 (5.1 – 4.6 – 4.5 – 3.9, 6+). One full-share ahead of it is co-owned/similarly-formatted KVET-FM “98.1 – The Austin Texas Original,” which falters by three-tenths (6.4 – 6.1, 6+) but carries on at #3. April’s +1.1 enabled KVET-FM to notch its best 6+-stat since last December’s 6.2; “The Austin Texas Original” was -.9 in February. KVET-FM and KASE were tied for fifth place in March (5.3, 6+). Their mainstream CHR sibling KHFI “96.7 Kiss FM – Austin’s #1 Hit Music Station” surrenders one-half share (5.7 – 5.2, 6+), dipping from fifth to sixth.

Raleigh

Spoken-Word Formats – There are more noteworthy ups/downs for Capitol Broadcasting sports talk WCMC “99.9 The Fan,” which was -1.3 in January; +.5 in March; -.5 in April; and now +.5 in May (3.4 – 3.9 – 3.4 – 3.9, #13 to #11, 6+). Following eight straight up or flat moves that produced a gain of three-tenths (.2 – .3 – .4 – .4 – .5 – .5 – .5 – .5 – .5, 6+), co-owned sports talk WDNC “620 The Ticket” sputters by four-tenths to .1 (#21 to #25, 6+). Leveling off at 7.8 (6+) after April’s -1.0 (8.8 – 7.8, 6+), University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill news/talk WUNC “91.5 North Carolina Public Radio” nonetheless slips from second to third. January 2018’s 9.1 is its strongest 6+-share since January 2014’s 9.4. WUNC fell to third-place in “Holiday” 2017 after four consecutive months in the runner-up slot. Flat as well (5.1 – 5.1, 6+), iHeartMedia news/talk WTKK “106.1 Stay Connected” remains in seventh-place. An April loss of two-tenths curtailed three consecutive upticks that yielded a +1.5 (3.8 – 4.7 – 4.9 – 5.3, 6+). Just before that, WTKK was -1.4 via three straight decreases (5.2 – 5.0 – 4.7 – 3.8, 6+). One streak by Curtis Media Group news/talk WPTF “News Radio 680” continues and another is broken. This is the fourth time in a row that it posts a 1.0 (6+) – but – after nine straight sweeps at #19, WPTF advances to #18.

Raleigh Music Formats – In back-to-back sweeps, Capitol Broadcasting adult contemporary WRAL “Mix 101.5” is a collective +2.0 (5.1 – 5.8 – 7.1, March – April – May, sixth to fifth, 6+) with its strongest 6+-showing (7.1) since 10.4 in “Holiday” 2017. Three negative moves in succession accounted for a roughly 50% decline (-5.3) in its 6+-share (10.4 – 6.1 – 5.4 – 5.1, 6+). A combined -2.0 in three successive decreases (9.4 – 8.3 – 7.5 – 7.4, 6+), Curtis Media Group-owned WQDR “Today’s Best Country 94.7 QDR” answers with a +.7 to 8.1 (third to second, 6+). In January, WQDR posted a +2.6; “Today’s Best Country” was off a collective full-share October-November-December (7.7 – 6.9 – 6.7, 6+). Leading the pack in this North Carolina market for the 12th straight month, Radio One urban AC WFXC “Foxy – Today’s R&B and Classic Soul” recaptures the four-tenths it squandered in April (9.3, 6+), curtailing three dips in a row that accounted for a combined -1.8 (10.7 – 9.5 – 9.3 – 8.9, 6+). This past January’s 10.7 is its best-ever (6+) PPM stat. Immediately prior to February, “Foxy” was an overall +2.0 in four consecutive gains (8.7 – 8.9 – 9.4 – 10.4 – 10.7, 6+). Its loss of one-half share last October halted six straight positive spikes that netted +2.4 (6.8 – 7.2 – 7.5 – 8.1 – 8.2 – 8.7 – 9.2, 6+). Albeit -1.1 in April and May (5.0 – 4.6 – 3.9, 6+), Curtis Media Group classic hits-oldies WKIX “Kix 102.9 – Carolina’s Greatest Hits” remains at #11. Up or flat the past three monthlies for a +1.4 (3.4 – 4.1 – 4.8 – 4.8, 6+), Radio One-owned gospel WNNL “103.9 The Light” tumbles by four-tenths to 4.4 (ninth to tenth, 6+). February’s +.7 ended three straight decreases that accounted for a -1.0 (4.4 – 4.1 – 3.6 – 3.4, 6+).

Indianapolis

Spoken-Word Formats – Having forfeited seven-tenths in April, Metropolitan Indianapolis Public Broadcasting news/talk WFYI answers with a one-half share May increase (2.6 – 3.1, #14 to #13, 6+); WFYI was +1.1 in January. Following four straight positive spikes for a combined +2.5 (3.4 – 4.5 – 5.0 – 5.6 – 5.9, 6+), Emmis news/talk WIBC “93.1 Indy’s News Center” regresses by three-tenths to 5.6 but is steady at #7 (6+). Preceding the aforementioned streak, WIBC was an overall -1.8 in four straight downward moves (5.2 – 4.9 – 4.2 – 3.6 – 3.4, 6+). Locked on 2.1 (6+) in January and February, co-owned sports talk WFNI “The Fan” has now been stuck on 2.3 (#15 to #16, 6+) in March, April, and May. At the same time, iHeartMedia’s similarly-formatted WNDE “Indy’s Sports Station” is in a repetitive 1.7 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 1.7 sequence (flat at #17, 6+).

Indianapolis Music Formats – Country-formatted properties occupy the first two slots here, with Cumulus Media’s WFMS “95.5 The Country Station” following April’s +1.1 with a +.5 (6.2 – 7.3 – 7.8, 6+) to repeat at #1. Meanwhile, Emmis-owned WLHK “Country 97.1 Hank FM” is +1.6 in five consecutive monthlies without a loss (5.5 – 6.2 – 6.2 – 6.7 – 6.8 – 7.1, fourth to second, 6+). Prior to April, the last time WFMS reached #1 was in November 2013. The 7.8 by “The Country Station” is the highest 6+-stat by either WFMS or “Hank” since WFMS logged an 8.3 in October 2013. An overall +.8 in May and June (2017), WFMS was -.9 (July); +.8 (August); +.5 (September); -.7 (October); +1.1 (November); -.9 (December); -.6 (“Holiday” 2017); -.5 (February 2018); +1.0 in April; and now +.5 in May. On the strength of a +.7 in January, “Hank” ended three straight down or flat sweeps for a -1.6 (7.1 – 7.1 – 6.4 – 5.5, 6+). This (May 2018’s 7.1) is the strongest 6+-showing for WLHK since 7.6 in September 2015. Erasing exactly half of its -1.2 accumulated in three downward moves in a row (5.5 – 4.7 – 4.5 – 4.3, 6+) with a +.6 (4.9, 6+), Entercom hot AC WNTR “107.9 The Mix – Better Variety for a Better Workday” enters the top ten (#11 to #9). A combined +2.2 in January and February (3.2 – 4.3 – 5.4, 6+), Radio One CHR WNOW “100.9 Radio Now” follows with a collective -2.3 in March, April, and May (5.4 – 4.7 – 3.9 – 3.1, flat at #13, 6+). Unchanged at #12, urban AC cluster-mate WTLC-FM “106.7 Indy’s R&B Leader” is -1.3 in three downward trends in a row (5.2 – 4.6 – 4.1 – 3.9, 6+).

Milwaukee

Spoken-Word Formats – Simultaneous with iHeartMedia’s WISN “News/Talk 1130” hanging out a +.9 to 7.7 (fourth to second, 6+), Scripps news/talk and Milwaukee Brewers flagship WTMJ “Wisconsin’s Radio Station” falters by six-tenths (7.9 – 7.3, second to third, 6+). With downward trends in each of the last three sweeps (8.4 – 8.3 – 7.5 – 6.8, 6+), WISN was an overall –1.6. Finishing second in six successive survey periods, “News/Talk 1130,” which was a combined -.9 in February and March, fell to fourth in April; it was +1.0 in January. When WISN dropped one-half share in “Holiday” 2017, it ended five straight gains that yielded a +1.9 (6.0 – 6.1 – 6.7 – 6.8 – 7.0 – 7.9, 6+). Prior to January, the last time it reached the eight-share level (6+) was just over five years ago (8.1, April 2013). Meanwhile, in April (2018), WTMJ matched February’s +.9. Before that particular February gain, “Wisconsin’s Radio Station” was without an increase the previous four sweeps for a -2.0 (7.3 – 6.4 – 6.4 – 6.1 – 5.3, 6+). Steady at #15, WUWM is an overall +.8 in four sweeps in a row without a loss (2.0 – 2.3 – 2.4 – 2.7 – 2.7 – 2.8, 6+). The University of Wisconsin news/talker is within 2.0 – 2.9 range (6+) for the 13th consecutive report. After being off six-tenths as a result of three successive negative trends (1.8 – 1.6 – 1.3 – 1.2, 6+), Entercom’s WSSP “Sports Radio 105.7 The Fan” picks up one-tenth to 1.3 (#17 to #16, 6+).

Milwaukee Music Formats – Not only does a positive spike of six-tenths to 4.2 (6+) by Milwaukee Radio Alliance adult contemporary WLDB pull the plug on four consecutive sweeps without an increase for an overall -3.8 (7.4 – 4.8 – 4.8 – 4.3 – 3.6, 6+), “B-93.3 The ‘80s to Today” cracks the top ten (#12 to #10). April’s 3.6 is its lowest 6+-showing since November 2017’s 2.9. Improving by six-tenths as well is iHeartMedia’s WMIL “FM 106.1 – Milwaukee’s Best Country,” which is a cumulative +2.5 in five straight increases (3.6 – 4.5 – 5.0 – 5.4 – 5.5 – 6.1, sixth to fifth, 6+). Before registering a +.9 in January, “FM 106.1” was a combined -3.2 in five successive downward moves (6.5 – 5.7 – 5.0 – 4.3 – 3.9 – 3.6, 6+). Unchanged at #9, WMIL’s format rival, Scripps’ WKTI “94.5 KTI Country,” regains the one-tenth it lost in April (4.4 – 4.3 – 4.4, 6+). Its +.6 in February interrupted six successive down or flat survey periods for a collective -1.4 (4.8 – 4.5 – 4.4 – 4.4 – 4.4 – 3.6 – 3.4, 6+). Immediately in advance of that trending, WKTI posted three straight gains for a +1.1 (3.7 – 3.8 – 4.0 – 4.8, 6+). While flat at #7, Entercom hot AC WMYX “99.1 The Mix” logs a +.3 to 4.8 (6+), applying the brakes to five successive sweeps without an increase which accounted for a -1.2 (5.7 – 5.4 – 5.3 – 5.2 – 5.2 – 4.5, 6+). April’s 4.5 marked the first time “Mix” slipped below a five-share (6+) since “Holiday” 2016’s 4.9. Over and above being back in double-digits (6+) for the first time since “Holiday 2017,” iHeartMedia classic hits-oldies WRIT is +1.5 in three straight increases (8.8 – 9.4 – 9.9 – 10.3, 6+). Moreover, “95.7 Big FM – Milwaukee’s Greatest Hits” is #1 for the 39th consecutive ratings period. Prior to January 2018, “Big FM” had been in double-digits (6+) in six of the previous 12 ratings periods; 11.6 in “Holiday” 2017 was its strongest 6+-stat since 14.4 in “Holiday” 2015. Duplicating April’s loss of one-half share, Saga Communications’ WKLH “96.5 Milwaukee’s Hometown Rock” (7.4 – 6.9 – 6.4, 6+), segues from third to fourth. WKLH was -.9 (“Holiday” 2017); +.5 (January 2008); -.9 (February); +1.1 (March); -.5 (April); and now -.5 in May. “Milwaukee’s Hometown Rock” was an overall +3.0 in four consecutive August through December increases (4.6 – 5.1 – 5.5 – 6.0 – 7.6, 6+). December 2017’s 7.6 marked the first time WKLH reached the seven-share level (6+) since the station reappeared in print more than three years ago (December 2014). Slipping by one-half share as well is urban AC sibling WJMR “Jammin’ 98.3 – Today’s R&B and Old School” (3.5 – 3.0, #13 to #14, 6+).

Nashville

Spoken-Word Formats – In three straight sweeps without an increase, Nashville Public Radio news/talk/classical hybrid WPLN-FM “NPR News and Classical Music” is a combined -.5 (5.3 – 5.3 – 5.0 – 4.8, flat at #9, 6+). January’s full-share gain ended three decreases in succession that resulted in a -2.4 (6.4 – 5.7 – 4.6 – 4.0, 6+). WPLN-FM was +1.2 in October to 6.4, its best 6+-share in the PPM-era. Returning the two-tenths it added in April (3.5 – 3.7 – 3.5, 6+), Cumulus Media news/talk WWTN “Super Talk 99.7” remains at #11. January’s half-share improvement suspended three straight declines that yielded a -2.0 (5.0 – 4.4 – 3.1 – 3.0, 6+). Co-owned sports talk WGFX followed “Holiday” 2017’s -.6 with a January +.9, but “104.5 The Zone” is -3.4 in four consecutive losses (6.5 – 3.9 – 3.7 – 3.4 – 3.1, #12 to #13, 6+). Similarly-formatted/Cromwell Group-owned WPRT “102.5 The Game,” which was +.7 in April, is off one-tenth in May (2.6 – 2.5, #14 to #15, 6+). With a high of 1.4 and a low of .9 (6+), the topline (6+) May 2017 – May 2018 trending for iHeartMedia news/talk WLAC “Talk Radio 1510” (flat at #19) is 1.1 – 1.1 – 1.1 – .9 – .9 – 1.0 – 1.0 – 1.1 – 1.0 – 1.4 – 1.3 – 1.1 – 1.3 – 1.2.

Nashville Music Formats – As it recaptures in its entirety the six-tenths squandered in March and April (6.1 – 5.6 – 5.5 – 6.1, 6+), Cumulus Media urban AC WQQK “92-Q” progresses from seventh to fifth. Notwithstanding a May loss of one-half share (8.7 – 8.2, 6+), Midwest Communications adult contemporary WJXA “Mix 92.9 – Your Life, Your Music” is #1 for the fourth month in a row. WJXA ranked first in November, December, and “Holiday” 2017; shifted to second in January; but returned to #1 in February with a +1.0. Prior to January’s -6.7, “Mix” was +8.0 in six straight increases (6.4 – 6.5 – 6.7 – 7.4 – 7.7 – 9.9 – 14.4, 6+). Via four successive up or flat trends (.5 – .6 – .7 – 1.2 – 1.2, #20 to #18, 6+), Cromwell Group’s WQZQ “Classic Hits 93.3” more than doubles (+.7) its 6+-share; 1.2 is its best 6+-stat since last November (1.2, as well). On the heels of gaining eight-tenths in April (1.1 – 1.9, 6+), WAY Media contemporary Christian WAYM “WAY-FM” surrenders all but one tenth of that increase in May (1.2, -.7, #17 to #18, 6+). April’s 1.9 is its strongest 6+-share since September 2017’s 2.0. Owing to three straight up or flat moves (.2 – .9 – 1.4 – 1.4, #18 to #17, 6+), TBLC Media Spanish contemporary WNVL “Activa” now has a 6+ AQH stat that is seven times greater than it was in February; “Activa” reached the top twenty for the first time in March. After combining for a -1.4 in April, the market’s two CHR rivals post a collective +.5 in May. Specifically, iHeartMedia’s WRVW “107.5 The River” is up two-tenths (5.7 – 5.9, steady at #6, 6+), while Midwest Communications’ WNFN “106.7 Nashville’s New Hit Music” adds three-tenths (2.3 – 2.6, #16 to #14, 6+). Having registered a -.5 in March and a +.6 in April, iHeartMedia’s WSIX “The Big 98 – Nashville’s #1 for New Country” is flat in May (5.9, fifth to sixth, 6+). Flat this sweep as well (4.0 – 4.0 and steady at #10, 6+), Cumulus Media’s similarly-formatted WKDF “103.3 Nash FM” responded to a -1.2 in March with an April +.5. Meanwhile, its cluster-mate, WSM-FM “95.5 Nash Icon,” which faltered by one-half share in April following March’s -.3, improves by four-tenths and remains at #8 (5.3 – 5.7, 6+). Following four straight gains for an overall +1.8 (3.2 – 3.3 – 3.6 – 3.9 – 5.0, 6+), “Nash FM” dropped three-tenths in February. WSIX was +1.1 in January to end three straight decreases that accounted for a -1.4 (5.5 – 5.1 – 4.9 – 4.1, 6+); “The Big 98” added six-tenths in February. A January and February +1.9 by “Nash Icon” (4.2 – 5.6 – 6.1, 6+) wiped out its -1.7 from December and “Holiday” 2017 (5.9 – 5.6 – 4.2, 6+).

Providence

Spoken-Word Formats – On the heels of April’s +.6, Entercom sports talker WVEI tacks on an additional half-share (3.4 – 3.9, 6+) and climbs from eighth to seventh. The Boson Red Sox Radio Network affiliate was a cumulative -2.2 in February and March (5.0 – 3.6 – 2.8, 6+); however, leading up to the February sweep, WVEI was an overall +1.8 via three consecutive up or flat trends (3.2 – 3.6 – 3.6 – 5.0, 6+). It is tied with Cumulus Media news/talk WPRO-AM “News Talk 630,” which surrenders in its entirety the eight-tenths it collected via three consecutive upticks (3.9 – 4.2 – 4.6 – 4.7, 6+). When WPRO-AM lost one-tenth in January, it curtailed four straight upward moves of two-tenths each for a collective +.8 (3.2 – 3.4 – 3.6 – 3.8 – 4.0, 6+). Linked at #10 are The Wheeler School’s WELH (flat at 2.2, #11 in April, 6+) and WGBH Educational Foundation’s WGBH (2.1 – 2.2, +.1, #12 to #10, 6+). Immediately prior to this sweep, these two public news/talkers finished back-to-back four straight times. Following a February gain of six-tenths (1.4 – 2.0, 6+), iHeartMedia news/talk WHJJ “Providence’s News, Traffic, and Weather” is down an overall one-half share in three straight decreases (2.0 – 1.8 – 1.7 – 1.5, 6+) yet actually improves from #13 to #12. The January 2018 – May 2018 (6+) topline for Cumulus Media-owned WPRV “AM 790 Talk & Business” is a steady .4 – .5 – .6 – .5 – .6 (#16 to #15).

Providence Music Formats – In addition to wiping out April’s -.5 with a May +.8, Cumulus Media adult contemporary WWLI “Lite Rock 105” progresses from third to first (8.6 – 9.4, 6+). Whereas “Holiday” 2017’s 12.3 was the strongest 6+-share for WWLI since 18.0 in “Holiday” 2016, April 2018’s 8.6 is its weakest since 7.2 in October 2015. Prior to this past October, “Lite Rock” (-1.1 in March) was a combined +1.6 as the result of three straight increases (9.8 – 10.0 – 10.8 – 11.4, 6+). Departing the top spot after spending March and April there is iHeartMedia-owned WHJY “94 HJY Providence’s Home of Rock and Roll” (9.4 – 9.0, -.4, first to second, 6+). February’s 9.6 is its best 6+-stat since September 2013 (9.6, as well). As a result of five straight up or flat trends (7.2 – 7.4 – 7.5 – 8.3 – 8.3 – 8.8, fourth to third, 6+), Hall Communications’ WCTK “Cat Country 98.1” is +1.6 and displays its best 6+-share since September 2015’s 8.9. Whereas it was a cumulative +1.3 in “Holiday” 2017 and January 2018, Red Wolf Broadcasting Spanish tropical WKKB “Latina 100.3” loses half its 6+-share (-1.4) in April and May (2.8 – 2.3 – 1.4, 6+), exiting the top ten (#10 to #13). “Latina 100.3” was down six-tenths in February and up seven-tenths in March.

Norfolk – Not only is WVKL “Smooth R&B from Yesterday & Today” #1 for the 18th time in a row, it hangs out a +.9 (12.3 – 13.2, 6+). The Entercom urban AC posts a 6+-share of 11.0 or higher for the 26th time in the last 27 sweeps. When it logged a 14.6 this past November, WVKL set the record for highest 6+-performance by any Norfolk station in the PPMera, breaking the old mark of 14.3 (6+) it set two months earlier. Before slipping by one-half share in October, “Smooth R&B from Yesterday & Today” – which earlier was on top for 55 consecutive ratings periods – posted three straight improvements accounting for a +2.4 (11.8 – 12.0 – 13.4 – 13.7 – 14.2, 6+). With a gain of seven-tenths to 3.6 (unchanged at #7, 6+), its hot AC sibling – WPTE “94.9 The Point – The Sound of Now” – pulls the plug on three straight down or flat trends that accounted for an overall loss of six-tenths (3.5 – 3.5 – 3.2 – 2.9, 6+). This (3.6) represents the strongest 6+-stat for “The Point” since 4.4 in September 2017. Following three upticks in succession that generated a +1.8 (4.3 – 5.7 – 5.9 – 6.1, 6+), co-owned adult contemporary WWDE “101.3 2WD” returns more than half that increase (5.0, -1.1, 6+) but stays in fifth-place. Without a gain the past seven ratings periods for a -.8 (1.7 – 1.7 – 1.3 – 1.3 – 1.2 – 1.0 – 1.0 – .9, 6+), Norfolk State University urban contemporary WNSB “Hot 91.1” is up one-tenth to 1.0 (6+) and carries on at #12. By dropping four-tenths to 6.7 (flat at #4, 6+), Saga Communications classic rock WAFX “106.9 The Fox” suspends three upticks in a row (4.7 – 5.9 – 6.3 – 6.4 – 7.1, 6+) that netted +2.4. In five successive (slightly) up or flat trends, iHeartMedia urban-rhythmic oldies WHBT gained three-tenths (1.9 – 2.0 – 2.0 – 2.0 – 2.2 – 2.2, 6+), but “92.1 The Beat” falters by three-tenths to 1.9 (eighth to ninth, 6+). As the result of five successive sweeps without an increase, hot AC sibling WMOV spirals by -3.9 (5.0 – 1.6 – 1.3 – 1.1 – 1.1 – 1.1, 6+) with “Movin’ 107.7” exiting the top ten (#10 to #11).

Greensboro

Spoken-Word Formats – A gain of two-tenths to 4.0 (ninth, 6+) by iHeartMedia news/talk WPTI “94.5 Your News, Talk, & Sports Station” applies the brakes to three decreases in succession that produced a cumulative -2.1 (5.9 – 5.2 – 4.6 – 3.8, 6+); WPTI was +1.6 in January (4.3 – 5.9, 6+). An overall +2.2 in five consecutive increases (3.3 – 3.4 – 3.6 – 4.4 – 4.5 – 5.5, 6+), it relinquished more than half that total in December (4.3, -1.2, 6+). Prior to the November 2017 sweep, the last time WPTI reached the five-share level (6+) was in November 2016 with a 5.0. While Wake Forest University news/talk WFDD “88.5 Public Radio for the Piedmont” drops one-tenth (2.3 – 2.2, flat at #13, 6+), University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill news/talk WUNC is up four-tenths (.7 – 1.1, #15 to #14, 6+). In “Holiday” 2017, WFDD returned in its entirety the +.6 it gained in November and December (1.7 – 2.1 – 2.3 – 1.7, 6+). Prior to April, WUNC registered a .9 (6+) in three of the previous four sweeps (.9 – .9 – 1.1 – .9, 6+). By way of three straight (slight) increases, Curtis Media Group sports talk WSJS quadrupled its 6+-share (.2 – .3 – .6 – .8, 6+), but “Triad Sports” is off three-tenths in April and May (.8 – .6 – .5, unchanged at #16, 6+).

Greensboro Music Formats – In what proves to be a powerful ratings periods for the market’s two country FMs, Entercom’s WPAW “93.1 The Wolf” roars back from April’s -.9 with a +1.1 (5.1 – 6.2, steady at #6, 6+). Its April decrease curtailed three successive upticks that accounted for an overall gain of seven-tenths (5.3 – 5.7 – 5.8 – 6.0, 6+). At the same time, iHeartMedia’s similarly-programmed WTQR “Q-104.1 – #1 for New Country” hauls out a +1.2 (5.0 – 6.2, 6+) to draw even with its format rival. This (6.2) is the highest 6+-share for “The Wolf” since 7.1 last October, while “Q-104.1” posts its most potent 6+stat (6.2) since last November – and like WPAW, it’s 7.1. Co-owned WVBZ “105.7 Man Up!” improves by a collective nine-tenths via three consecutive upticks (2.9 – 3.0 – 3.3 – 3.8, 6+) and enters the top ten (#11 to #10). Back in print after an extended hiatus, Dick Broadcasting’s WKRR “Rock 92” notches a +1.0 (5.3 – 6.3, unchanged at #5, 6+, while CHR sibling WKZL 107.5 KZL – The #1 Hit Music Station” sputters by seven-tenths (5.0 – 4.3, seventh to eighth, 6+). Notching double-digits (6+) for the 19th sweep in a row, Entercom urban AC WQMG “97.1 QMG The Best R&B and Old School” remains at #1 (12.2 – 12.0, -.2, 6+). WQMG was -1.1 in March but then +1.2 in April. Before slipping to #2 in “Holiday” 2017 with a -1.2, WQMG spent seven straight survey periods on top and had been #1 each month in calendar year 2017 except April and May. Its adult hits sibling – WSMW “98.7 Simon Says We Play Everything” – remains at #2 for the fifth straight sweep but is -2.2 owing to four consecutive decreases (11.6 – 11.4 – 10.4 – 10.3 – 9.4, 6+). Eroding by six-tenths each are rhythmic CHR cluster-mate WJMH “102 Jams” (7.9 – 7.3, flat at #3, 6+); iHeartMedia adult contemporary WMAG “The Triad’s Best Variety of the ‘80s, ‘90s, & Today,” (6.9, steady at #4, 6+); and Curtis Media Group regional Mexican WYMY “La Ley 101.1” (4.0 – 3.4, #10 to #12, 6+). WJMH was a combined +1.1 (7.3 – 8.0 – 8.4, January – February – March, 6+), but off one-half share in April. Entering the May sweep, WMAG netted +1.4 as the result of three positive or flat trends in a row (6.1 – 7.0 – 7.0 – 7.5, 6+). A collective +.7 in three consecutive positive moves (2.9 – 3.4 – 3.5 – 3.6, 6+), WYMY dropped six-tenths in March, but rebounded in April with a +1.0. Through six successive sweeps without a loss (2.6 – 2.8 – 3.1 – 3.4 – 3.4 – 3.6 – 4.1, 6+), iHeartMedia CHR WMKS was +1.5, however, “100.3 Kiss FM All the Hits” falters by four-tenths to 3.7 (6+) and exits the top ten (#9 to #11).

West Palm Beach

Spoken-Word Formats – Unchanged at #8, Dade County School Board news/talk WLRN is without a loss for the fifth report in a row for a +1.2 (2.3 – 3.2 – 3.2 – 3.2 – 3.5 – 3.5, 6+). Packed close together ranker wise are iHeartMedia news/talk WJNO “1290 The Palm Beaches’ News & Talk” (flat at 2.3 and remaining at #10, 6+); Alpha Media’s WFTL “News Talk 850” (2.0 – 1.7, -.3, #12 to #11, 6+); and iHeartMedia news/talk WZZR “Real Radio 94.3 – Real Talk for the Palm Beaches” (2.1 – 1.6, -.5, #11 to #13, 6+). Before gaining three-tenths in April, WJNO was a collective -1.3 via four successive decreases (3.3 – 2.9 – 2.6 – 2.1 – 2.0, 6+), whereas WFTL had been +1.0 in four straight sweeps without a loss (1.0 – 1.3 – 1.3 – 1.5 – 2.0, 6+). Similar to WJNO, WZZR posted a +.3 in April, stopping four consecutive down or flat trends that resulted in a -.9 (2.7 – 2.3 – 2.1- 2.1 – 1.8, 6+).

West Palm Beach Music Formats – An increase of seven-tenths to 3.8 (ninth to seventh, 6+) by WAY Media contemporary Christian WAYF “Uplifting-Upbeat-Real” halts three straight decreases for a collective -2.2 (5.3 – 4.0 – 3.4 – 3.1, 6+); WAYF was +.9 in January (4.4 – 5.3, 6+). Six downward moves in a row by iHeartMedia’s WKGR eventuated in a -1.9 (6.4 – 6.2 – 6.1 – 5.7 – 5.3 – 4.9 – 4.5, 6+) although “98.7 The Gater – The Palm Beaches’ Rock Station” dials up a one-half share increase in May to 5.0 (fifth to fourth, 6+). Even though it is -1.2 in three straight decreases (10.2 – 9.9 – 9.2 – 9.0, 6+), Alpha Media hot AC WRMF “97.9 Variety from the 90s and Now” is on top for the fifth month in a row. Prior to January’s +1.6, WRMF was down or flat in three consecutive ratings periods for an overall -3.0 (11.2 – 11.2 – 8.9 – 8.2, 6+). It spent 12 consecutive months on top before dropping to the runner-up slot in “Holiday” 2017. A one-tenth September loss ended four straight increases that netted +1.6 (9.3 – 9.4 – 9.5 – 10.4 – 10.9, 6+). No sooner does iHeartMedia CHR WLDI gain six-tenths to 4.3 (6+), suspending three successive downtrends that accounted for a -1.2 (4.9 – 4.6 – 4.0 – 3.7, 6+), “WiLD 95.5 The Palm Beaches’ #1 Hit Music Station” erodes in May by exactly -1.2 (4.3 – 3.1, sixth to ninth, 6+). Following April’s -1.0, its adult contemporary cluster-mate WOLL “Today’s Kool 105.5” levels off at 5.9 (second to third, 6+), while Alpha Media’s similarly-programmed WEAT “Sunny 107.9” returns 80% of April’s +.5 (5.2 – 4.8, -.4, fourth to fifth, 6+). Prior to April, “Kool” was +2.0 in three consecutive upticks (4.9 – 5.4 – 6.4 – 6.9, 6+) and had been +.8 (December 2017); -.6 (“Holiday” 2017); +.5 (January 2018); +1.0 (February); +.5 (March); and -1.0 (April). Down one full-share in September to 4.2 – its lowest 6+ showing since 3.9 in July 2011 – “KOOL” regained six-tenths of that decline in October; 6.9 in March was the station’s highest 6+-share since 7.5 in July 2016.

Jacksonville

Spoken-Word Formats – Tacking on a +1.1 to April’s +.9 (7.3 – 8.2 – 9.3, 6+), Cox Media Group news/talk WOKV “104.5 – Jacksonville’s News, Weather, and Traffic” progresses from a three-way tie at #2 to #1. This (9.3) is the strongest 6+-showing since September 2017’s 9.7 for WOKV, which was -.9 in March. Four straight negative trends (9.7 – 8.5 – 7.7 – 7.0 – 6.9, 6+) accounted for a -2.8 but “104.5 – Jacksonville’s News, Weather, and Traffic” wiped out nearly alf that margin in January and February (6.9 – 8.1 – 8.2, +1.2, 6+). In “Holiday” 2017, WOKV recorded its softest 6+-stat since 6.6 in “Holiday” 2016; the station was +1.3 in September. Public news/talk WJCT drops one-tenth for the third month in a row (3.5 – 3.4 – 3.3 – 3.2, #11 to #12, 6+). WJCT was a combined +.9 in January and February (2.6 – 3.0 – 3.5, 6+) with January’s +.4 halting five straight down or flat sweeps for a collective -.7 (3.3 – 3.2 – 3.0 – 3.0 – 3.0 – 2.6, 6+).

Jacksonville Music Formats – Making up 80% of its March and April -1.0 (5.2 – 4.6 – 4.2, 6+) with a +.8 to 5.0 (6+), iHeartMedia urban contemporary WJBT “93.3 The Beat” progresses from ninth to seventh. As a result of three consecutive negative trends (4.7 – 4.2 – 3.5 – 3.1, 6+), CHR sibling WKSL was a collective -1.6 but “97.9 Kiss-FM” wipes away nearly half that loss with a +.7 to 3.8 (#12 to #11, 6+). “Kiss” was +1.0 in January to conclude three straight losses that produced a -1.2 (4.9 – 4.3 – 3.9 – 3.7, 6+). Despite not having a decrease in each of the past five sweeps for a combined +1.8 (6.6 – 7.1 – 7.7 – 8.2 – 8.2 – 8.4, 6+), Cox Media Group classic hits-oldies WJGL backslides from second to third; “96.9 The Eagle” was -1.7 in “Holiday” 2017 (8.3 – 6.6, 6+). Off two-tenths (9.2 – 9.0, 6+), Renda Broadcasting adult contemporary WEJZ “96.1 Jacksonville’s Official Work Station” slides from first to second after just a one-month stay on top. WEJZ was #1 in “Holiday” 2017; February; and April. Before sputtering by -4.3 in January, “Jacksonville’s Official Work Station” was an overall +5.8 in four straight up trends, practically doubling its 6+ AQH share (6.1 – 6.4 – 6.4 – 9.0 – 11.9, September 2017 through “Holiday” 2017, 6+) and noted its highest 6+-stat since 14.7 in “Holiday” 2016. A whopping -5.7 in four straight decreases (13.6 – 12.3 – 11.0 – 10.6 – 8.2 – 7.9, 6+), iHeartMedia-owned WQIK “99.1 – Jacksonville’s Country” posted a +1.1 in March, but is now -2.3 in April and May (9.0 – 8.2 – 6.7, second to fourth, 6+). WQIK ranked first in December 2017; January 2018; and March. On top for 12 ratings periods in succession, “Jacksonville’s Country” shifted to #2 in “Holiday” 2017. A combined -1.8 in July and August (12.2 – 11.6 – 10.4, 6+), it followed with an overall +3.2 in September-October-November (10.4 – 11.7 – 13.6, 6+), with October’s 13.6 WQIK’s best-ever (6+) PPM-performance. In October 2017, “Jacksonville’s Country had a 10.3-share advantage (13.6 – 3.3, 6+) over Renda Broadcasting’s WGNE but that lead is now just nine-tenths as “Gator Country 99.9” sits at 5.8 (sixth to fifth, 6+). WGNE bounced back from its -.6 in March with a +1.1 in April. Entering the April ratings period, Cox Media Group CHR WAPE posted a 5.5 (6+) in three of the previous five ratings periods (5.5 – 4.8 – 5.5 – 5.4 – 5.5, 6+). It then logged a +.8 to 6.3, its strongest 6+-stat since last August’s 6.6, but “95.1 Jacksonville’s #1 Hit Music Station” is off six-tenths in May to 5.7 (fifth to sixth, 6+).

Memphis

Spoken-Word Formats – Separated by two-tenths are iHeartMedia news/talk WREC “600 AM – Memphis’ News, Traffic, & Weather” (flat at #11, 6+) and Entercom sports talk WMFS “ESPN Sports Radio” (3.2 – 2.8, -.4, #11 to #12, 6+). WREC, -.8 in “Holiday” 2017 and a +.9 in January, is without an increase for the fourth successive sweep for an overall deficit of one-half share (3.5 – 3.3 – 3.2 – 3.2 – 3.0, 6+). Its loss of eight-tenths in “Holiday” 2017 brought to a close five consecutive up or flat moves for a collective +.7 (2.7 – 2.7 – 2.9 – 3.1 – 3.4 – 3.4, 6+); January’s 3.5 is the best 6+-share for WREC since 3.6 in February 2017. Immediately prior to dropping one-tenth in April, WMFS was up or flat three monthlies in a row for an overall gain of eight-tenths (2.5 – 3.1 – 3.1 – 3.3, 6+). Following four straight increases that accounted for a +1.3 through November (2.0 – 2.2 – 2.6 – 2.9 – 3.3, 6+), “ESPN Sports Radio” was a combined -.8 in December and “Holiday” 2017 (3.3 – 3.1 – 2.5, 6+).

Memphis Music Formats – Over and above shifting from third to second, Cumulus Media urban-rhythmic oldies WRBO “Soul Classics and Today’s R&B” is +2.3 in three straight positive spikes (7.7 – 8.0 – 9.2 – 10.0, 6+), hitting an even ten-share – its finest 6+-performance since October 2017’s 10.2. By hauling out a +.8 to 7.9 (steady at #4, 6+), Entercom adult contemporary WRVR “104.5 The River” pulls the plug on four successive sweeps without an increase that accounted for a -5.8 (12.9 – 7.6 – 7.5 – 7.5 – 7.1, 6+). On top for three months in a row, iHeartMedia urban AC KJMS slipped to second in April, but with a +.7 in May (9.4 – 10.1, 6+), “V-101” is back at #1. KJMS rebounded from January’s -.6 with a +.7 in February; it departed the top spot in “Holiday” 2017 after four consecutive months there. Following three straight improvements that yielded a +2.1 (9.2 – 10.0 – 10.4 – 11.3, 6+), “V-101” was -1.0 in December. It succeeds urban contemporary sibling WHRK “K-97.1 – Memphis’ Only Hip-Hop and R&B” (9.8 – 9.4, -.4, first to third, 6+). By gaining six-tenths in April (following a +1.0 in March), “K-97.1” displaced “V-101” at #1. Still in that iHeartMedia cluster, gospel WHAL “95.7 Halleluiah – Memphis’ Inspiration Station” regresses for the third time in a row (7.3 – 7.2 – 7.1 – 6.1, fourth to fifth, 6+), with all but two-tenths of that overall -1.2 coming in May’s -1.0. This (5.4) is its softest 6+-stat since December 2017’s 5.4.

Hartford

Spoken-Word Formats – This is the fourth down or flat trend in succession for Connecticut Public Broadcasting Network news/talk WNPR “Connecticut’s Public Media Source for News & Ideas,” which is -2.3 in that stretch (5.9 – 5.9 – 5.5 – 4.2 – 3.6, eighth to tenth, 6+). WNPR followed “Holiday” 2017’s -1.3 with a +.9 in January. The last time it was below a five-share (6+) was in August 2017 (4.7). Flat at 5.8 (6+), Entercom news/talk WTIC-AM “News Talk 1080” remains in seventh place. An April loss of one-tenth halted three increases in a row that netted +1.5 (4.4 – 5.1 – 5.5 – 5.9). Immediately prior to that streak, WTIC-AM was a collective -1.4 in three straight dips (5.8 – 5.6 – 5.0 – 4.4, 6+). As a result of five consecutive sweeps without a loss, Connoisseur Media news/talk WDRC-AM “AM 1360 The Talk of Connecticut” gains four-tenths (.8 – 1.0 – 1.0 – 1.2 – 1.2 – 1.2, 6+) and remains at #13. Immediately after being a cumulative +1.1 in three straight gains (1.4 – 1.7 – 2.3 – 2.5, 6+), University of Massachusetts-owned WFCR “New England Public Radio” is -1.1 in three successive down or flat trends (2.5 – 1.8 – 1.4 – 1.4, unchanged at #12, 6+). Entering the January 2018 sweep, WFCR was within 1.0 – 1.7 range (6+) in each of the previous 21 ratings periods.

Hartford Music Formats – Not only does iHeartMedia’s WWYZ post its fifth successive improvement for an overall +2.9 (4.9 – 5.1 – 5.5 – 6.0 – 7.0 – 7.8, 6+), “Country 92.5” has its best 6+-showing since last October (7.8, as well) and jumps from fifth to third. With a heretofore consistent January 2018 – April 2018 topline of 7.2 – 7.7 – 7.3 – 7.5 (6+), Entercom rhythmic CHR WZMX “Hot 93.7” busts out a +.8 to 8.3, its highest 6+-stat since April 2016’s 8.6; “Hot” continues in the runner-up slot. After Entercom adult contemporary WRCH recorded a +1.1 in March (13.2 – 14.3, 6+) only to lose all of it in April (13.2, -1.1, 6+), things settle down in May for “Lite 100.5,” which is #1 for the 22nd consecutive ratings period (13.2 – 13.1, -.1, 6+). For the 19th time in the last 21 sweeps – and eleventh in succession – “Lite” is in double-digits (6+). January’s -4.9 halted at six its consecutive string of up or flat trends that yielded a +8.4 (9.9 – 10.2 – 10.2 – 10.3 – 11.0 – 13.0 – 18.3, 6+). By notching a +.6 to 3.7 (tenth to ninth, 6+), Red Wolf Broadcasting alternative WMRQ “Radio 104.1” erases 75% of its collective March and April -.8 (3.9 – 3.4 – 3.1, 6+).