Category: Industry News

Monday, October 22, 2018

| October 22, 2018

Jim Villanucci Returns to Albuquerque Air on ‘ESPN 101.7 The Team.’ Former longtime KKOB-AM, Albuquerque talk show host Jim Villanucci returns to the air in the market on Team Broadcasting’s sports talk KQTM-FM “ESPN Radio 101.7 The Team” today from 4:00 pm to 7:00 pm.  Villanucci left KKOB in 2013 after 14 years on the air there.  After exiting KKOB, he hosted shows at KXNT, Las Vegas and KXL, Portland.  Team Broadcasting president Joe O’Neill says, “The range of this show is as unlimited as Jim’s talent.  Of course, there will be sports but Jim will jump into current events, pop culture, and anything a listener – or Jim – wants to talk about.”  Villanucci’s show fills the slot left by the recent retirement of Bob Brown, host of “The Locker Room.”  O’Neill adds, “This is an exciting and dynamic addition to our station.  We are fortunate to have a person with Jim’s talent, intellect, and humor who also is familiar with the Albuquerque and New Mexico culture.  I’m certain that Jim’s thousands of fans share our excitement.” Villanucci says, “It’s great to be back in New Mexico.  I’m humbled by this opportunity.  I’m excited to catch up with the audience I gained over my 14 years of radio here.  Trust me, the best is yet to come.”

Hofstra University Communications Students Spend Day at iHeartMedia New York. On Friday (10/19), a group of students from The Lawrence Herbert School of Communication at Hofstra University spent the day with industry professionals at iHeartMedia’s New York station group.  The group included members of the two-time NAB Marconi Radio Award-winning college station WRHU “88.7 FM Radio Hofstra University” as well as students enrolled in the Department of Radio, TV, Film’s “Radio Industry in the Digital Age” course. The students toured the iHeartMedia studios and met with vice president of digital operations Tony Molaee, digital content coordinator Allie Gold, WLTW local sales manager Hetal Raythattha, senior account manager Jody Berger Wenig, WAXQ program director Eric Wellman, WKTU program director Rob Miller, iHeartRadio associate producer Mark Wiener; WHTZ “Z100” personalities Maxwell, Brady, and Shelly Rome, WWPR jock DJ Whutever, WOR talk host Mark Simone, promotions director Danielle Dellilo, The Weiss Agency EVP Heather Cohen, and iHeartMedia Markets Group division president Scott Hopeck.  (Berger Wenig, Wiener, DJ Whutever, Dellilo, and Cohen are all Hofstra alumni.)  The visit also included a performance by current Herbert School student Jenna Rose at the iHeartRadio Dunkin’ Donuts Iced Coffee Lounge.  Pictured above are (from l-r): Adria Marlowe, associate dean, The Lawrence Herbert School of Communication; Wiener; Hopeck; Cohen; Mark Lukasiewicz, Dean, The Lawrence Herbert School of Communication; John Mullen, Director of Operations, and Dellilo.

Inaugural iHeartRadio Podcast Awards Takes Place on January 18. This first-ever iHeartRadio Podcast Awards will take place on Friday, January 18 at the iHeartRadio Theater in Los Angeles and will be hosted by “Stuff You Missed in History Class” co-host Holly Frey, “Breakfast Club” cast member Charlamagne Tha God, morning personality Bobby Bones, and syndicated host Mario Lopez.  The panel of judges will include industry leaders from Gimlet, iHeartMedia, NPR, Parcast, PRX, Tenderfoot TV, Wondery, and others.  iHeartMedia podcasting division president Conal Byrne states, “Podcasting has roared onto the audio scene creating the most excitement since the advent of streaming music services.  The iHeartRadio Podcast Awards will provide a forum to celebrate the high-caliber, creative content that has made podcasting a major new audio category – and that truly reflects America’s favorite podcasts, voted by the listeners themselves.  We look forward to hosting this transformative, annual event and encouraging everyone in the podcasting industry to push the envelope and inspire even more creators in this space.”  Voting by listeners will decide 17 of the 22 categories with the panel of judges to select the winners in the following five categories: Podcast of the Year, Breakout Podcast, Best Branded Podcast, Best Social Impact from Podcast/Host and Podcast Innovator Award.

Sean Spicer-Katie Pavlich Podcast Launches Today on Radio.com. This podcast is a continuation of the pilot episodes launched by the duo in June.  Former White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer and political commentator Katie Pavlich are debuting the “Everything’s Going to be All Right” podcast today on Entercom’s Radio.com platform.  The 12-episode weekly podcast will feature Spicer and Pavlich discussing the latest political news and issues surrounding the country as Americans prepare to head to the polls in three weeks. The program is being produced by Entercom program director Joe Zarbano.  Entercom SVP and general manager Pam Russo says, “We are excited to welcome Sean and Katie back to Radio.com and hear their informative take on current events.  Their intimate knowledge of today’s political landscape and expertise will provide listeners with a timely and diverse perspective.”

TALKERS News Notes. When the 2018 World Series gets underway tomorrow night in Boston, ESPN Radio will be broadcasting the game between the AL champion Red Sox and the NL champion Dodgers with Dan Shulman and Chris Singleton calling every pitch and on-field reports coming from Buster OlneyMarc Kestecher will lead into each broadcast with 60-minutes of pre-game coverage that will include reports from Tim Kurkjian and Olney.  ESPN Deportes Radio is presenting coverage in Spanish with Orlando “El Duque” Hernández, Renato Bermudez, and José Francisco Rivera…..This Wednesday (10/24), Federal Emergency Management Agency, in coordination with iHeartMedia, is hosting the unveiling of the modernization project of iHeartMedia’s WLW-AM, Cincinnati “NewsRadio 700.”  WLW is one of 77 stations across the country that serve as National Public Warning System (NPWS) Primary Entry Point (PEP) stations, participating with FEMA to provide emergency alert and warning information to the public before, during, and after incidents and disasters.  As directed by Congress in the Integrated Public Alert and Warning System (IPAWS) Modernization Act of 2015, FEMA, which manages IPAWS, launched an effort to upgrade PEP stations.  These stations are designed and hardened to withstand various natural and man-made events to ensure continuity of operations.  WLW-AM is the second station in the country to complete the upgrade, which includes increased sheltering capabilities, expanded broadcast capacity, and sustainable power generation for all types of hazardous events.

BFoA’s 2019 Golden Mike Award Goes to Perry A. Sook.  The president and chief executive officer of Nexstar, Perry A. Sook, will receive the 2019 Golden Mike Award from the Broadcasters Foundation of America at a ceremony at the Plaza Hotel in New York City on Wednesday, March 6, 2019.  Upon learning of this honor, Sook said, “There is no greater testament to broadcasters’ commitment to public service than in times of emergency.  From hurricanes to wildfires, news teams across the country consistently brave extremely dangerous conditions to deliver lifesaving news coverage and information to local communities.  Many of us at Nexstar have experienced firsthand the devastating effects and extensive damage caused by severe weather and other unforeseen events.  That is why we are proud to support the important work of the Broadcasters Foundation in providing both one-time emergency aid and ongoing monthly grants to help our colleagues most in need.  I would like to thank Dan Mason and the Broadcasters Foundation for this prestigious Golden Mike Award and the more than 9,000 Nexstar employees who share in this great honor for the work they do each day to make a positive difference in their local communities.”  BFoA chairman Dan Mason says, “Perry has led the growth of Nexstar with vision and resolve that has benefited the entire television industry.  As a member of our Board, he has championed our mission of helping broadcasters in acute need and spread the word about the assistance we can provide. He is admired among his colleagues, and it is a privilege to honor him.”

Legal Gender Definition Issue, U.S. to Exit Nukes Treaty, Trump-Russia Investigation, Migrant Caravan, the Khashoggi Death Case, Midterm Elections, New Halloween Film, NFL Action, and MLB Playoffs-World Series Among Top News/Talk Stories Over the Weekend. The Trump Administration’s plan to create a legal gender definition based on a person’s genitalia at birth; the U.S. plan to leave the Intermediate Nuclear Forces Treaty with Russia; the Robert Mueller-led Trump-Russia investigation probes Roger Stone’s Wikileaks contacts; the growing Honduran migrant caravan enters Mexico; the aftermath of the slaying of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi; the November midterm elections and the battle to control the House and Senate; the latest Halloween installment rules the weekend box office; the weekend’s NFL action; and the MLB playoffs and the World Series were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio over the weekend, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

 

KIRO-FM, Seattle Seeks Night Host. As the Bonneville station says, this is a “golden opportunity with one of the nation’s most established and respected news/talk stations. We’re looking for a fun, entertaining, and well-informed individual who can deliver remarkable content that attracts an adults 25-54 audience. In addition, qualified candidates should be able to regularly contribute to the various digital platforms including, but not limited to regular blogs, podcasts, and/or videos, online listener chats, and use of other social media platforms in addition to emerging digital technologies.” KIRO-FM would prefer candidates have one to two years of major market hosting experience. Check out the application info and full job description here.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. At Twin Cities CHR KDWB, owner iHeartMedia extends its deal with morning show host Dave Ryan (center) and co-hosts Steve-O (right) and Falen (left). Ryan celebrated his 25th anniversary as morning host of the station back in June and iHeartMedia says this deal will keep the “Dave Ryan in the Morning Show” on air as “one of the most popular shows in the Twin Cities.” Ryan will also continue his role as a talent mentor for iHeartMedia where he is “helping to develop the next generation of on-air talent and personalities.”  KDWB program director Rich Davis adds, “Dave Ryan is a Twin Cities institution and I’m so glad he will continue to anchor mornings for KDWB.  He’s a true talent whose hard work, entertaining topics, and views on pop culture have kept him beloved by listeners and fans and at the top of the ratings for so many years.”…..At Townsquare Media’s country KAWO-FM, Boise, brand manager Rich Summers exits the station after four years.  Operations manager Jeff Connell is handling programming duties while Summers’ replacement is sought.

Friday, October 19, 2018

| October 19, 2018

Limbaugh Sits Down with Hannity on FNC.  Nationally syndicated talk radio superstar Rush Limbaugh sat down with Sean Hannity on the latter’s FOX News Channel program last night (10/18) for a freewheeling hour in which the two talked about everything from Limbaugh’s historic success as a radio personality, the radical left’s alleged “mob violence” tactics, the importance of the midterm elections, the Kavanaugh confirmation, Limbaugh’s concern for the future of America, and more.

Dibs Re-Ups with ‘The Game’ in San Francisco. Morning drive personality Dan Dibley signs a long-term deal to continue as a host on the “Joe, Lo & Dibs” show on Entercom sports talker KGMZ-FM, San Francisco “95.7 The Game.”  Entercom San Francisco SVP and market manager Gregory Nemitz says, “Dan brings a unique style full of knowledge and humor to ‘95.7 The Game.’  He plays an important role on our morning team and we are excited to keep him around for years to come.”  Dibley was part of the first morning show when the station was launched in 2011. He left the station in 2014 and returned the following year.  Dibley works with co-hosts Joe Fortenbaugh and Lorenzo Neal.

Former Radio Financial Advice Host Convicted of Fraud.  This story is even stranger than so many of the past cases of financial advisers who bilked listeners to their (usually brokered) financial advice talk shows out of their life savings.  The backdrop to the case against Dawn Bennett was tinged with allegations of her use of “hoodoo” spells to prevent authorities from catching her.  The jurors who convicted Bennett on 17 counts of securities fraud, bank fraud, wire fraud and others did not hear about her attempts to keep investigators silent through the use of a “hold your tongue” spell using cow tongues nor her spending some $800,000 to pay Hindu priests to pray to keep investigators at bay.  But it certainly gave the press something to add to its coverage of the case.  Bennett was convicted of diverting millions of dollars from investors – both radio listeners and personal friends – to pay for her “lavish lifestyle.”  Her weekly “Financial Myth Buster” program was heard on WWRC, Washington.

More Than 500 Attend OAS and WHO, Des Moines Newt Gingrich Event.  Pictured above is former House Speaker Newt Gingrich on stage before a crowd of 500-plus at the Iowa Historical Building in Des Moines.  “An Evening with Newt Gingrich” was presented by iHeartMedia news/talk WHO-AM and Lee Habeeb’s rapidly growing, nationally syndicated “Our American Stories” program (heard evenings at 10:00 pm on WHO).

TALKERS News Notes. Two tidbits of news from Chicago from media journalist Robert Feder.  First, all-news WBBM-AM/WCFS-FM weekend anchor Regine Schlesinger is stepping away from the station after a 45-year career there.  She left her full-time anchor role with the radio news outlet in 2016 and has been handling weekend anchor duties since then.  She first joined the station as an anchor and producer in 1973.  Also from the Windy City, at urban talk outlet WVON-AM, general manager Melody Spann-Cooper gets some relief from a Cook County Circuit Court judge who issues a stalking no-contact order against a former station account executive whom Spann-Cooper and her husband Pierre Cooper say has been harassing them.  She issued a public statement, “This has been a difficult chapter, having to prosecute someone who once had such great potential in our industry.  But history has shown that you cannot take threats and intimidation lightly, especially in the workplace.  My priority has been and will always be protecting my staff, my family, and myself.”…..A new podcast is launched on the iHeartRadio platform.  “Alchemy This,” a new improv comedy podcast hosted by award-winning comedian Kevin Pollak makes its debut.  Pollak is the star of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel and was named one of the Top 100 Comedians of All Time by Comedy Central.  Each episode his team of alchemists will act out bizarre comical scenarios, giving listeners the opportunity to choose the settings/scenes…..SiriusXM is unveiling its new Big Ten Radio channel in cooperation with the Big Ten Network and the Big Ten Conference.  Big Ten Radio will feature live play-by-play broadcasts from several Big Ten men’s and women’s sports including football, basketball, baseball, softball and more. The new channel’s programming will feature exclusive new shows hosted by former Big Ten athletes, journalists and conference insiders, including former Ohio State star and 2005 Lombardi Award winner A.J. Hawk; former Illinois All-America offensive lineman Brad Hopkins; former Iowa defensive lineman Anthony Herron; former Penn State basketball player Jon Crispin; former Ohio State tight end Ben Hartsock; as well as Jason Goff, Tom Luginbill, Pete Pistone and Matt Schick…..Also from SiriusXM, the satcaster is presenting a special stand-up show, “Ricky Gervais and Friends: A Work In Progress,” featuring actor and comic Ricky Gervais.  It will take place at The Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College on November 8.  “Ricky Gervais Is Deadly Sirius” premiered on the Comedy Greats channel in October 2017 and featured Gervais interviewing an eclectic group of guests, including musician Noel Gallagher and renowned scientist Richard Dawkins. In the second year, Gervais is expected to sit down with Jerry Seinfeld and other celebrities, as well as friends and fellow comedians…..In the Florence-Muscle Shoals, Alabama market, Singing River Group is buying a station group from URBAN Radio Broadcasting that includes news WVNA-AM, rock WVNA-FM, hip hop WMSR, country WLAY, and urban contemporary WMXV.  The price has not been announced.  George Reed of Media Services Group was the exclusive broker for the transaction.

The Case of Presumed-Dead Saudi Journalist Top News Talk Story for Week of October 15-19.  The case of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi – presumed murdered for his criticism of the Saudi regime – and the effect on U.S.-Saudi relations, tied with the numerous parties who’ve backed out of attending an investment conference in Saudi Arabia in response was the most-talked-about story on news/talk radio this week, landing atop the Talkers TenTM.  At #2 this week was the November midterm elections and speculation about the 2020 presidential race.  Coming in at #3 was Senator Elizabeth Warren’s video revealing her ancestry test results, followed by the Robert Mueller’s expected release of a report on the Trump-Russia investigation 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. See this week’s entire chart here.

Radio, Real Estate and Real Life: Former ‘Shock Jock’ Carolyn Fox Is This Week’s Guest on Harrison Podcast.  One of the first female radio personalities to be called a “shock jock,” former New England disc jockey and talk show host Carolyn Fox, is this week’s guest on the award-winning PodcastOne series “The Michael Harrison Interview.”  Back in the 70s, 80s and 90s, Fox was a major personality on a variety of leading radio stations in Boston and Providence with a growing national reputation in the industry.  She is a two-time recipient of Billboard’s Radio Personality of the Year award and has been inducted into the Rhode Island Radio Hall of Fame. But when the 21st century rolled around, things began to unravel for Fox in terms of both her career and marriage.  Her career sputtering and simultaneously going through a painful divorce, this mother of two decided to make a major change.  She packed up and headed to New York where she launched a new career and life as a real estate salesperson in Manhattan.  Playing upon her connections in radio, colorful history, and superb communication skills, she forged a dynamic career in the lucrative but highly competitive Manhattan real estate market as a member of the prestigious Corcoran Group’s sales team.  Harrison and Fox talk candidly about changes in radio including what it takes to “move on” and explore the fascinating idiosyncrasies of Manhattan real estate.  Harrison says, “Let’s not hide from the fact that the shrinking of the radio industry since consolidation has forced thousands of broadcasting pros to reinvent themselves and find new ways to make a living, not to mention keep their heads on straight.  I think this conversation provides an enlightening and even inspirational glimpse into that process.”  To listen to the podcast in its entirety, please click here or click on the player box marked “The Michael Harrison Interview” in the right-hand column of the TALKERS newsletter and on every page on Talkers.com.

Envision Networks Seeks Talent Booker. If you’ve got the talent, we’ve got the cash. Do you have the contacts to book top celebrities for morning radio shows across the U.S.?  We’re seeking a highly motivated, freelance, go-get-’em type to book tours with everyone from Hollywood and TV types to classic rock artists and quirky people making headlines or going viral.  Good commissions and there’s no limit to the amount of $$ you can make.  Please have at least three years of experience as a talent booker.  If you have the connections, we want to connect with you.  Send a resume along with a list of celebrities you’ve booked in the past to celebsonradio@envisionnetworks.com.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. Rock programming pro Borna Velic is promoted to program director for Saga Communications’ WHQG, Milwaukee “102.9 The Hog,” taking over for Joe Calgaro, who recently left the station to program Entercom’s rock WAAF, Boston.  Velic has been serving as music director and afternoon drive personality (with co-host Mitch Paget).  He’ll remain on the afternoon show in his new position.  WHQG general manager Annmarie Topel says, “Borna has been a major contributor since he joined us and an integral part of The Hog’s success.  He has great music intuition and knowledge of the format, coupled with a solid analytical ability that is essential in programming. It doesn’t hurt that the staff likes and respects him.”…..Farther north at Cumulus Media’s alternative WWWX, Appleton, Wisconsin “96.6 The Fox,” the station brings air personality Max back to host the afternoon drive show, effective Monday (10/22). He’s most recently been serving as operations manager at Case Communications’ triple A WLGE “FM 106.9 The Lodge” and classic hits WQDC “Rewind 97.7” in Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin.  He worked at the Cumulus Appleton station group from 2002 through 2009.

Thursday, October 18, 2018

| October 18, 2018

Hannity to Have Limbaugh on FNC Program for Full Hour.  This evening (10/18), FOX News Channel star Sean Hannity will have fellow Premiere Networks syndicated radio superstar Rush Limbaugh on his 9:00 pm ET show for the full hour.  According to the Washington Times, the two “will chat for a full hour about President Trump, the midterm elections and the ever-changing prism of vital information, political and otherwise.”  This is noteworthy because Limbaugh does not make a habit of appearing on other peoples’ programs.  In fact, he is very particular about making television appearances in the first place. Industry watchers remember that it was on Limbaugh’s radio program that an up-and-coming Sean Hannity first reached a national audience as a substitute host.

New Jersey Devils and Skyview Networks Expand Relationship. The National Hockey League’s New Jersey Devils are working with Skyview Networks to produce their radio broadcasts.  Skyview will continue to supply its AdView Inventory Management application while adding full production services to the partnership.  Skyview Networks’ Scottsdale, Arizona production studios provide remote production services for professional and collegiate sports properties, news networks and syndicators.  Skyview says that with state-of-the-art studios and a dedicated producer for each client, all responsibilities and quality control of the broadcast are maintained by Skyview Networks to deliver a polished product.  Skyview VP of business development Matt Stys adds, “We are pleased to deepen our relationship with the Devils and their broadcast team.  We have exceptional studios and producers out of our corporate office and feel the franchise will benefit by moving these responsibilities to our team. As rights deals and distribution channels change in the sports broadcast industry, I see this as a valuable service we can provide at the highest level.”

TALKERS News Notes. The Apollo Theater and SiriusXM are presenting a live forum on Thursday, November 1 called “Say It Loud…With Your VOTE!” that will be broadcast the following day across a number of SiriusXM channels.  The discussion, obviously centered around political and social issues, is being moderated by Urban View channel hosts Karen Hunter and Reverend Al Sharpton and will feature a panel of SiriusXM hosts and contributors including Urban View host Joe Madison, former chairman of the Republican National Committee Michael Steele; Progress channel hosts Zerlina Maxwell and Jess McIntosh; SiriusXM chief Washington correspondent Olivier Knox; and Breitbart contributor and Patriot channel host Sonnie Johnson.…..Former WIOD, Miami talk show host Rick Sanchez is joining cable channel RT America to host “The News with Rick Sanchez,” launching at 7:00 pm on Monday (10/22).  Sanchez was a longtime television news personality in Miami before serving with CNNMSNBC, FOX News Channel, FOX News Latino, and Mundo FOX…..Northern California public media company KQED announces that president and CEO John Boland is retiring in September 2019 and the board of directors is selecting current EVP and COO Michael Isip as his successor.  He’s been appointed president elect.  KQED notes that during Boland’s tenure, it “prioritized investment in local content and services, increasing the staff by 40% and growing the newsroom to become one of the largest in the Bay Area and among all public media stations.  As a result, KQED audiences, membership and community financial support are at all-time highs. KQED Pubic Radio has become the number one-rated station in Northern California and commands the largest audience among all public radio stations nationally.  KQED is also now home to the largest science unit on the West Coast, an expanded arts and culture team, and an education division that develops digital media tools and media literacy products for youth educators and students.”  Isip joined KQED in June 2001 as executive producer in TV productions and rose through the ranks, attaining SVP and chief content officer status in 2014 and his current EVP/COO post in 2017…..A recent poll conducted by Edison Research and public media platform Marketplace reveals fewer Americans describe themselves as anxious about their financial situation than they have in the past three years.  Decreases in economic anxiety are across demographics and are most significant among Independents and African-Americans.  Since 2015, Marketplace and Edison Research have used responses to the poll to develop the Economic Anxiety Index, a unique measure of the American economy.  The number, on a scale from 0-100, is calculated from answers to a battery of questions. They say the Economic Anxiety Index describes just how stressed out people feel about their personal financial situations. The higher the number, the more economic stress someone is feeling. Another finding from the study indicate that nearly three-quarters of Americans (74%) are worried about the spread of false information on social media websites like Facebook and Twitter. See the study results here.

Taking in to the Streets in Tampa. Pictured above are Salem Radio Network syndicated talk show hosts Hugh Hewitt (left) and Mike Gallagher (right) mugging for the camera ahead of this evening’s Midterm Battleground Talkers tour taking place tonight in Tampa, Florida. Also taking part in the live event at the Straz Center will be Sebastian Gorka and Kayleigh McEneny.

Saudi Journalist Case, Trump-Russia Report, November Midterms/2020 Presidential Race, Migrant Caravan, Treasury Leaker Case, Warren Ancestry Video, NFL Action, and MLB Playoffs Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (10/17). The case of presumed-dead Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi and the Trump Administration’s response; news that after the November elections, Robert Mueller will release his findings so far in the Trump-Russia investigation; the battle for control of the house and senate in the November midterms and speculation about who will run for president in 2020; the caravan of Central American migrants headed toward the U.S.; the case of Treasury official Natalie Mayflower Sours Edwards’ alleged theft of sensitive documents about former Trump campaign officials; criticism over Senator Elizabeth Warren’s Native American heritage video; NFL action; and the Major League Baseball playoffs were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. The new morning show at iHeartMedia country station WGAR, Cleveland is the “LeeAnn and Wazz Show,” starring incumbent morning talent LeeAnn Sommers (left) and Steve Wazz (right).  The new program will launch on Monday (10/22) and replaces the show hosted by the departed Brian Fowler and Sommers. iHeartMedia North Ohio Region president Keith Hotchkiss says, “Bringing Wazz back home to Cleveland is an important step for WGAR as we develop a fresh new morning show for Clevelanders by Clevelanders.  We are thrilled to pair Wazz with LeeAnn Sommers, who is already a fan favorite on WGAR.  Wazz is not only an engaging on-air talent but he also possesses incredible talents off-air and in the social space.”  Wazz was most recently afternoon personality and APD at iHeartMedia’s CHR WDCG, Raleigh “G105.”…..At Cumulus Media’s country KSCS, Dallas Jasmine Sadry exits her role on the “Hawkeye in the Morning” program where she worked with Mark “Hawkeye” Louis and Katelyn “Connected K” Maida…..Pictured below at the NASH campus in Nashville is country artist Jimmie Allen (second from right) with Ty Bentli, Kelly Ford, and Chuck Wicks (l-r) after Allen’s appearance on the syndicated “Ty, Kelly, and Chuck” morning show.  Allen spoke about his new album, Mercury Lane, advice he’s gotten from Charley Pride, racism in the country music world, and recording his favorite song from Keith Urban’s Ripcord album.

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

| October 17, 2018

E.W. Scripps to Acquire Triton for $150 Million. Cincinnati-based E.W. Scripps Company may not want to operate radio stations anymore (in August it announced a deal to sell its remaining 19 radio stations to SummitMedia for $47 million), but it likes the digital audio space enough to pony up $150 million for digital audio tech and measurement services firm Triton.  Scripps says that the move helps it “advance its strategies for near- and long-term value creation.”  Triton provides measurement in the digital audio space as well as hosting and advertising infrastructure (including dynamic ad insertion).  Scripps president and CEO Adam Symson says, “Triton positions Scripps well to expand its role in the fast-growing global digital audio marketplace. Triton’s efficient business model, multiple growing revenue streams, competitive advantages and expanding international footprint made this an attractive opportunity.”  He adds, “The acquisition of additional television stations remains our number one M&A priority, with the goal of enhancing our national scale and in-market depth for our Local Media portfolio.  On the National Media side, acquiring Triton complements our strategy of owning growth businesses that capitalize on the evolving habits of media consumers and furthers our commitment to margin expansion.” Triton powers or measures streaming music and podcasting for media companies including: Pandora, Spotify, NPR, iHeartMedia, Entercom, Cumulus Media, Prisa (Spain), Mediacorp (Singapore) and Karnaval (Turkey).  This is a cash transaction and Scripps notes that Triton’s 2018 revenue is projected to be approximately $40 million, with EBITDA projected in the mid-teen millions. Triton’s 2019 revenue is projected to grow in the low to mid-teens percent range over 2018.  Triton co-founder and CEO Neal Schore and his management team will continue to lead Triton.

WOWO, Fort Wayne Names Kayla Blakeslee New Morning Host. News director Kayla Blakeslee is named as the new morning drive host at Federated Media’s news/talk WOWO-AM/W298BJ in Fort Wayne. Longtime station morning personality and market legend Charly Butcher died unexpectedly in August and the station had been searching for his replacement.  Blakeslee returned to WOWO as news director in 2016 after a year away from radio.  She’d been with the station previously from 2011 through 2015.  WOWO afternoon host Pat Miller announced Blakeslee’s appointment on his program yesterday (10/16).

Rosati Named President of Binnie Media. New England media company Binnie Media promotes EVP of New Hampshire and Maine radio Massimo Rosati to president of the company.  Rosati joined Binnie in 2015 as regional sales manager after having previously served with iHeartMedia and Saga Communications.  Binnie Media owner Bill Binnie says, “Massimo joined us five years ago and was responsible for regional sales before taking responsibility for New Hampshire radio sales and eventually all of the radio sales.  I am confident that Mass’ creativity, energy, and passion for the business will be crucial to our success.”

Cristina Mayer to Serve as iHM Washington-Baltimore Marketing Director. Marketing pro Cristina Mayer is named marketing director for iHeartMedia’s Washington DC/Baltimore operations.  She comes to iHeartMedia from Mimi Brown Studio in New York where she was production manager.  In this position, Mayer will be responsible for developing and creating marketing strategies in order to increase brand awareness, enhance business relationships, and assist with driving in revenue for the region.  Washington/Baltimore RVP of programming Jeff Kapugi says, “Cristina’s extensive experience across many different types of media and entertainment organizations made her the perfect person to oversee marketing & promotions for iHeartMedia Washington DC/Baltimore.”

TALKERS News Notes. At suburban Chicago news/talk WCGO, Evanston, the “Citizen Kelly” show hosted by William J. Kelly moves to the 9:00 pm to 11:00 pm daypart.  At the same time as the show time change is announced, Kelly takes the opportunity to announce the filing of his paperwork to run for mayor of Chicago.  He says, “As the only Republican candidate in this race against 15 Democrats, I can win this race with the 133,000 Trump voters in Chicago alone.  My callers support me 100%.”…..Milwaukee news/talk WTMJ Radio is again presenting its holiday radio show “The Night Before Christmas,” starring Milwaukee media personalities Gene Mueller, Jane MatenaerJeff Wagner, and a cast of WTMJ hosts and local voices.  The annual show will be presented Monday, November 26 at Turner Hall.  It will be recorded in front of a studio audience and replayed on WTMJ and WTMJ.com throughout the Christmas season.  Five dollars from every ticket sold will benefit Kids2Kids Christmas…..Chicago media writer Robert Feder reports that ESPN hires former Chicago Tribune and New York Times sports reporter Malika Andrews to serve as an NBA reporter for ESPN.com and WMVP, Chicago “ESPN1000.”  She’ll cover the Bulls as well as the Milwaukee Bucks and the Minnesota Timberwolves.  She takes over for Nick Friedell who’s moving to NoCal to cover the Golden State Warriors for the company…..PodcastOne launches the new podcast, “Life Reboot,” hosted by television personality Leah Messer, self-empowerment speaker and teacher Lindsay Rielly, and celebrity journalist Brian Scott.  The podcast will guide listeners in learning to transform and live their best lives through personal stories, guest interviews, and tips from the Live Your Standard life coaching program…..iHeartRadio and HowStuffWorks are debuting a new iHeartRadio original podacast titled, “The End of The World.”  It’s developed and hosted by fan-favorite Josh Clark, co-host of the beloved podcast “Stuff You Should Know”.   This program “tackles the existential risks humankind faces and how today’s technological advancements will contribute to our survival.”  Clark is joined by a number of top experts including, astrobiologists, philosophers, and economists…..There’s a new senior vice president for news at NPR as Nancy Barnes fills the role left vacant by Mike Oreskes last fall after allegations of misconduct from his past arose and forced him to resign.  Her background is in newspapers.  She’s served as executive editor of the Houston Chronicle.

Saudi Journalist Case, Elizabeth Warren Criticism, T.I. ‘Melania’ Video, November Midterms/2020 Presidential Race, Trump-Russia Report, Trump-Stormy Daniels Spat, Canada Legalizes Pot, Hawking ‘No God’ Conclusion, NFL Action, and MLB Playoffs Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (10/16).  The case of presumed-dead Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi and the Trump Administration’s response; criticism over Senator Elizabeth Warren’s Native American heritage video; rapper T.I.’s video that depicts a Melania Trump look-alike doing a striptease; the battle for control of the house and senate in the November midterms and speculation about who will run for president in 2020; news that after the November elections, Robert Mueller will release his findings so far in the Trump-Russia investigation; the legal and social media spat between President Trump and Stormy Daniels; Canada becomes the second nation in the world to legalize marijuana; Stephen Hawking’s final book concludes there is no God; NFL action; and the Major League Baseball playoffs were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. Chicago media maven Robert Feder reports on Windy City radio pro Kathy Hart’s guest stint on news/talk WGN-AM over the weekend in which she spoke – to some degree – about her tumultuous end at Hubbard Radio hot AC WTMX.  While co-hosting with WGN weekend personality Frank Fontana, Hart disclosed she underwent medical treatment for what ended up being Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome during the time she was off the air leading up to her exit.  But when asked why she ultimately did not return to the very successful “Eric & Kathy” show, she declined to explain…..Southern California sales pro George Herrera joins Meruelo Media as local sales manager for hip hop KPWR, Los Angeles “Power 106” and urban contemporary duo KDAY, Redondo Beach and KDEY, Ontario. Previously, he served as an account executive at alternative KROQ…..Envision Networks announces the return of the Wink Martindale-hosted program “The 100 Greatest Christmas Hits of All Time” for holiday programming.  This 10-hour show counts down from 100 to 1 the top-selling, highest-charted, and best-loved Christmas songs ever released…..The Radio Music License Committee announces that Salem Media Group CEO Ed Atsinger is elected chairman of the RMLC.   He succeeds Ed Christian and John VerStandig, who had been operating as RMLC co-chairs for the past year.  Atsinger, no stranger to music licensing committees, previously served as chairman of the National Religious Broadcasters Music Licensing Committee for many years.  Ed Christian comments, “Given my vested interest in seeing to it that the RMLC continues to thrive, it’s reassuring that we now pass the baton to an experienced chairman who is perfectly positioned to hit the ground running.”  Atsinger adds, “I am fortunate to be assuming the mantle of chairman of the RMLC at a time when Ed Christian and a talented executive committee have worked so hard to build a solid foundation for the group and to enhance the RMLC’s stature in the industry. That said, it’s no secret that there are multiple challenges facing the industry right now and I am anxious to get to work with a great RMLC team that has already distinguished itself in many ways. We will continue the fight to maintain reasonable license fee levels during difficult economic times.”…..Pictured at right are “Steve Harvey Morning Show” cast members Shirley Strawberry (left) and Carla Ferrell (right) joining the more than 4,000 people who took part in the 2018 Sista Strut Breast Cancer Walk in Chicago this past weekend organized by iHeartMedia urban contemporary WVAZ “V103,” hip hop WGCI-FM, and Gospel WGRB “Inspiration 1390.”…..Sun Broadcast Group appoints of Rich O’Brien vice president of programing & affiliate relations.  O’Brien comes to SBG with more than 25 years of experience in national radio syndication, having served as a VP of radio programs for Superadio Network…..Sad news from the Motor City as former WRIF air personality Mike Clark passed away on Monday (10/15) at age 63.  Clark was one half of the “Drew and Mike” show (with Drew Lane) that aired on the rock station in morning drive for more than two decades.  Lane is quoted in the Detroit News saying, “He had some medical issues the past couple years, but I’m still very surprised because we were texting yesterday and he was in typically good humor.”…..Pictured below is Premiere Networks-syndicated personality Delilah (left) during her appearance on ABC-TV’s “Good Morning America” show with Robin Roberts (right) to talk about her latest book, One Heart At A Time, (2018, Rosetta Books).  During the book tour, she’s also appearing on “Megyn Kelly TODAY” and is featured on the cover of Women’s World Magazine and Guideposts magazine.

Tuesday, October 16, 2018

| October 16, 2018

PPM Analysis: News/Talk. Managing editor Mike Kinosian presents a look at the performances of radio stations based on data from the September 2018 PPM survey from Nielsen Audio, today focusing on news/talk. Among news/talk stations in PPM markets, some 47% see a dip in their 6+ weekly AQH share while 39% improve and 14% remain unchanged.  Looking back to last September, 53% of news/talk stations improve from September 2017 to September 2018 with 42% losing ground.  Four news/talk stations ranked #1 (6+) in their respective markets in the September survey: Cox Media Group’s WSB-AM/WSBB-FM, Atlanta rolls with a 7.9 share; Entercom’s KMOX, St. Louis shoots up to an 8.3 share; iHeartMedia’s WLW, Cincinnati dips to a 9.1 share (but stays in first place); and Townsquare Media’s WKXW, Trenton “New Jersey 101.5” stays on top with an 8 share. See Kinosian’s entire report here.

Cox Media Group Unveils its Broadcast Analytics Service. This platform for radio advertisers from Cox Media Group is called Cox Analytics for Broadcast and promises that “through rich audience data and insights, this new solution helps advertisers target active consumers in their product category and track the effectiveness of their campaigns through detailed analysis of their website traffic.”  The press release explains further: Data has always been used in the broadcast industry to determine results, and by leveraging the power of social media to identify these insights, CMG can tap into its massive digital audience – matching offline to online audiences.  Results are collected by combing listener data with social audiences, leading to a clearly defined, hyper-specific audience for radio advertisers to target.  These numbers are then generated through a custom dashboard, which allows advertisers to improve performance and understand what is driving their results. CMG executive director of revenue Katie Reid says, “These new capabilities will transform the way our clients target consumers and advertise with our radio platforms. Through Cox Analytics for Broadcast, we can measure the effectiveness of these audience segments, attribute actions taken by consumers and provide insightful research and data to reach ROI and help meet our clients’ goals.”

WVMT-AM, Burlington and Sister CHR Sold to Vox AM/FM LLC. Burlington, Vermont news/talk WVMT-AM and sister CHR WXXX-FM “95 TripleX” are being sold by Sison Broadcasting to Vox AM/FM, LLC for an as yet undisclosed price.  Vox currently owns sports talk duo WCPV-FM “101.3 The Game” and WEAV-AM “960 The Zone,” and classic hits WVTK-FM.  Vox will begin operating the stations under an LMA on January 1, 2019.  Sison owner Paul Goldman says, “WVMT and ‘95 TripleX’ have been my life and passion for over 40 years.  There is no player in our market better equipped to ensure their future than Vox.  My valued employees and stations are in great hands.”  Meanwhile, Vox partner and principal Ken Barlow states, “The people and stations at Sison are terrific! They have enormous market history and blend very well with our current cluster.  We look forward to merging our operations to better serve the Burlington-Plattsburgh radio market.”  This transaction was arranged by Doug Ferber of DEFcom Advisors on an exclusive brokerage basis.

Oakland A’s and KGMZ Breakup Not Pretty. The Oakland A’s announced their parting from flagship station KGMZ-FM, San Francisco with a Tweet showing radio equipment being wheeled away and the phrase, “It’s not us; it’s you.” Ouch!  But as the San Jose Mercury News writes, the parting was not a surprise since the team announced in April that this was the last year of the deal and asked fans if they thought the sides should renew with the Entercom sports talker.  There’s no word where the A’s radio broadcasts will end up for the 2019 season.

Missing Saudi Journalist, Paul Allen Dies, November Midterms, Hurricane Michael Aftermath, Warren Ancestry Video, Trump ‘60 Minutes’ Interview, Portland Patriots-Antifa Skirmish, Stormy Daniels Suit Tossed, NFL Action, and MLB Playoffs Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (10/15). The case of missing Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s trip to Saudi Arabia; Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen dies at 65 after battle with cancer; the November midterm elections and the battle for control of the house and senate; the devastation in the Florida panhandle after Hurricane Michael; Senator Elizabeth Warren produces video proving Native American ancestry, taunts President Trump; the president’s interview on “60 Minutes” with Lesley Stahl; the weekend’s clash between Patriot Prayer demonstrators and Antifa protestors; a judge tosses Stormy Daniels’ suit against President Trump; the weekend’s NFL action and the MLB Playoffs were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. Triangle radio personality Madison Lane returns to the air on Curtis Media Group’s adult hits WBBB-FM, Raleigh “96BBB” to host the morning drive program.  Lane previously was the morning personality at iHeartMedia’s CHR WDCG “G105” and WRSN-FM.  She left the business in 2006 to raise her children.  Lane says, “It was such a blessing to be able to have some time away to raise my kids and focus on my family.  This new chapter of my life is exciting and WBBB feels like home.  I love the awesome variety of music and the loyalty to the community.  I’m so excited to be a part of the team.”  Curtis Media Group SVP and general manager David Stuckey comments, “From our very first meeting, I knew Madison was the perfect fit for mornings on WBBB.  Madison brings familiarity and star power to the fastest growing station in the Triangle.  Her life experiences and knowledge of the Raleigh-Durham market make her the right person to solidify WBBB as the dominant radio brand in the Triangle.”…..Indiana Radio Watch’s Blaine Thompson reports that Adams Radio Group’s rhythmic CHR WJFX, New Haven, Indiana (Fort Wayne market) promotes late night and weekend host Taylor Morgan to middays…..Entercom announces the dates for the “Not So Silent Night” concert events in New York, San Francisco, and San Diego.  The alternative music festival debuted in San Francisco in 1991 and has grown from a small acoustic concert to a large arena show hosting some of the biggest alternative acts in three cities.  This year, the show will debut at New York’s Barclays Center and will be co-headlined by Muse and Florence + The Machine. WNYL, New York ALT 92.3’s holiday event will also feature musical performances by AJR, Bastille, Chvrches, Death Cab for Cutie, Foster The People, and Mike Shinoda on Thursday, December 6…..Entercom triple A WXRT, Chicago is announcing its 10th annual “Holiday Jam” will feature music from The Head and the Heart with special guest Mt. Joy…..WCSX, Detroit morning host Big Jim has been on a six-month mission to get a street named after Motor City music legend Bob Seger and this Friday (10/19) it’s going to happen.  The Beasley Media Group station, “The Big Jim’s House Morning Show,” and the City of Allen Park will officially unveil Bob Seger Boulevard during a two-hour event and ceremony at Allen Park City Hall that will include a special performance by a Bob Seger tribute band as well as a video screen featuring fans and celebrities congratulating the rock legend!

Monday, October 15, 2018

| October 15, 2018

iHeartMedia Appoints Greg Millard to EVP of Event and Experiential Partnerships Post. This new position is under the watch of iHeartMedia president of national sales, marketing and partnerships Tim Castelli.  New EVP of event and experiential partnerships Greg Millard comes to the company from his most recent position with Turner Broadcasting as vice president of partnerships and branded programming.  In his new role, Millard will spearhead the go-to-market strategy for all of iHeartMedia’s national sponsorship sales efforts, including the company’s roster of nationally recognized marquee events; the iHeartRadio Theaters in New York and Los Angeles; custom events and partnership opportunities; and local events in more than 150 markets nationwide.  Castelli says, “iHeartMedia has the biggest, culture-defining events in music across every genre.  Greg will leverage these events and culturally relevant moments to connect brands with their consumers.  With our unique access to data, insights, artists, moments and airwaves, iHeartMedia’s one-of-a-kind partnership opportunities help brands shape pop culture – not just chase it.”

Alpha Media’s ‘640 The Hurricane’ Names Andy Slater Afternoon Host. West Palm Beach sports talk outlet WMEN-AM “640 The Hurricane” announces the addition of the Andy Slater show in the 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm slot, effective today.  Slater was most recently hosting afternoons at iHeartMedia’s WINZ, Miami.  He’d served with Alpha Media’s WMEN for six years prior to that.  WMEN program director Paul Mason states, “Nobody has their finger on the pulse of the South Florida Sports scene like Andy Slater.  His proven track record of breaking local sports stories, inside sources, and his massive poker tournament is a huge win for ‘640 The Hurricane.’”

KLBJ-AM, Austin Weekend Talk Host Sued by Local Police Commander. Austin police commander Jason Dusterhoft is suing gun shop owner and weekend talk personality Michael Cargill and retired police officers group members Lyndon Lueders and Kevin Fisk for defamation. Dusterhoft claims that the trio defamed him by talking on the radio about his being put under criminal and internal investigation for allegedly assaulting a woman at a local nightclub. Dusterhoft is currently on restricted duty.  He claims the three made false statements about him.  Cargill tells the Austin American Statesman that the matter is a free speech issue.  Cargill’s one-hour, weekly show, “Come and Talk It” airs Sundays at 4:00 pm on Emmis-operated news/talk KLBJ-AM.

TALKERS News Notes. Conservative media icon Bill O’Reilly won a round in his legal battle with fellow, former FOX News Channel colleague Laurie Dhue, who is suing O’Reilly for allegedly breaking the terms of a previous sexual harassment settlement by speaking publicly about those past allegations.  O’Reilly’s team had filed a Motion to Compel Arbitration and/or Dismiss the Complaint and U.S. District Judge Deborah Batts ordered the two sides to arbitration, citing the clause in the settlement providing for dispute resolution.  Dhue argues that in a series of media appearances in 2017 prior to and leading up to FOX’s firing of O’Reilly, he made categorial denials of any wrongdoing even though, she argues, the settlement terms forbade him from doing so.  Dhue complains that these “false statements” cause her harm because “no employers will hire her if they believe that [Plaintiff] has previously made false allegations of sexual harassment in the workplace.”…..iHeartMedia and Einhorn’s Epic Productions are teasing their new original scripted mystery podcast call “Lethal Lit.”  “Lethal Lit” is a six-episode scripted podcast that follows teen detective Tig Torres as she returns to her small hometown of Hollow Falls where her aunt was framed as a serial killer ten years ago.  It’ll debut October 29 with two episodes and subsequent episodes will air each Monday on the iHeartRadio platform.  iHM says this is a “new type of storytelling format” for iHeartRadio.  Check out the official trailer here…..The photo below is a shot of the KKOB, Albuquerque hot air balloon that flew during last week’s Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta.  Station PD and director of AM Operations for Cumulus Albuquerque Pat Frisch says the now-world famous balloon festival was started back in 1972 to celebrate the heritage station’s 50th anniversary.  The balloon below is being piloted by Ron Curry.

Trump ’60 Minutes’ Interview, Sears Declares Bankruptcy, U.S.-Saudi Tensions, November Midterms, Kanye West White House Visit, Portland Patriot Prayer Violence, American Pastor Andrew Brunson Released, Hurricane Michael Aftermath, NFL Action, and MLB Playoffs Among Top News/Talk Stories Over the Weekend. Reaction to President Trump’s sit-down interview with ’60 Minutes’ reporter Lesley Stahl; iconic American retailer Sears files for bankruptcy protection; the ongoing tensions between the U.S. and Saudi Arabia over missing journalist Jamal Khashoggi; the November midterms and the battle for control of congress; Kanye West’s Oval Office meeting with President Trump; the violence at the Portland, Oregon Patriot Prayer rally; Turkey releases American pastor Andrew Brunson; the aftermath of Hurricane Michael; the weekend’s NFL action; and the Major League Baseball league championships series were 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. In the Beaumont, Texas market, Cumulus Media names Tommy “Jammer” Muzzillo program director for CHR KQXY “Q94.”  Muzzillo has been serving as assistant program director and music director, as well as afternoon personality at the station since 2010.  He rises to this position with the recent retirement of former OM and PD Brandin Shaw.   Muzzillo says, “I am thrilled to be programming the station I helped put on the air back in 1993!  And the funny thing is, our VP/market manager Bo Brown, who took the reins at the stations about three months ago, was with me when we kicked off ‘Q94’ back in 1993!  He and I work very well together and we have a really solid team at Cumulus Beaumont, plus having great Cumulus leaders and great minds like Doug Hamand, Mike McVay, Leslie Whittle, and Louie Diaz to bounce music and ideas off of makes us even stronger as we take the station into the future.”…..Director of programming Jerry McKenna exits Cape Cod Broadcasting’s four-station cluster – including country WKPE and adult contemporary WOCN – as the company eliminates his position…..Premiere Networks-syndicated radio host, Emmy Award-winning television personality, and best-selling author Steve Harvey was among the honorees at the Merge Gala Awards at the 10th annual Merge Summit in Los Angeles.  The Merge Gala Awards recognize those making an impact in bridging the worlds of faith and entertainment.  Harvey was joined by fellow award recipients Laila Ali, DeVon Franklin, and Chad Johnson & Michelle Williams.  (Photo: Von Jackson, Vlex Photos)…..Detroit radio duo “Rat and Puff,” a.k.a. Jeff Daly and Josh Foreman, respectively, are launching the 3rd annual “Terror Tour” – showcasing three of the biggest and scariest haunts that Michigan has to offer. Friends of the “Rat and Puff” show have the opportunity to win free tickets on their social media accounts and go along with the show as they document each experience. Despite not having a radio home at the moment, the show wanted to continue its yearly tradition.   They say, “We are really excited about our ‘Terror Tour’ this year because we personally, hand-picked all three stops.  We are super fans of haunted attractions and Michigan has some of the scariest in the country.  We encourage everyone to follow along with us on our social @RatAndPuffShow as the tour is bigger and scarier than ever.”…..iHeartMedia Nashville’s CHR WRVR “107.5 the River” announces the lineup for its second annual “Live. Life. Love.” concert taking place on Monday, December 10 at Marathon Music Works.  The concert will feature performances by Why Don’t WeDan + Shay, Lauv, and Kim Petras.  All proceeds from the event will benefit To Write Love On Her Arms (TWLOHA), a non-profit organization that supports mental health and suicide prevention resources nationwide.

PPM Analysis: Hot AC. Managing editor Mike Kinosian presents a look at the performances of radio stations based on 6+ data from Nielsen Audio’s September PPM survey, today focusing on hot AC. Compared to the August 2018 PPM survey, 49% of the hot AC stations on this panel were down (6+ AQH share) in September with 42% up and 9% flat.  Year-over-year, 50% were down with just 45% of stations up.  Just two hot AC outlets ranked #1 in their market in September – iHeartMedia’s KBIG, Los Angeles and Alpha Media’s WRMF, West Palm Beach – while nine hot AC outlets ranked in the top five in their respective markets.  See the whole report here.

Friday, October 12, 2018

| October 12, 2018

PPM Analysis: Sports Talk. Managing editor Mike Kinosian presents a look at the performances of radio stations based on 6+ data from Nielsen Audio’s September 2018 PPM survey, today focusing on sports talk radio.  More than half (54%) of the sports talk stations on Kinosian’s panel saw their weekly AQH share go up from the August 2018 survey to the September 2018 survey, led by Cumulus Media’s WGFX-FM, Nashville “104.5 The Zone,” which enjoyed a 1.4 share increase.  Comparing September 2017 to September 2018, some 55% of sports talkers improved.  Interestingly, Cumulus’ KNBR enjoyed a 1.2 share increase year-over-year in the San Jose market but dipped a tenth in the adjacent San Francisco market.  Entercom’s WFAN, New York “The Fan” ranked #1 (6+) in the September PPM survey in the Long Island market – the only sports talker to achieve a #1 ranking.  See the entire report here.

Cumulus Makes Prepayment of Portion of Loan. This $50 million discounted prepayment means Cumulus Media has paid off a portion of its $1.3 billion senior secured term loan facility due May 2022. Cumulus successfully purchases $50.2 million aggregate principal amount of term loans under the facility for $50 million (a discount to par value of 0.40%).  The transaction closed on October 11, 2018 and was funded with cash from operations.  The company notes that it will recognize a one-time, non-operating gain of approximately $0.2 million in its fourth quarter 2018 earnings, and its annual interest expense will be reduced as a result of this transaction.

KVI, Seattle Hosts Listener Appreciation Event. Seattle news/talk station KVI held a listener appreciation party on Tuesday (10/9) at Sinclair Broadcasting’s KOMO Plaza.  The station’s local hosts joined producer Phil Vandervort on stage for a discussion of such topics as the coming midterm elections and their favorite local restaurants.  Pictured (from l-r) are: KVI program director Rick Van Cise, station manager Gary Greenberg, morning host John Carlson, late morning duo Jamie Markley and David van Camp, early afternoon host Lars Larson, afternoon drive personality Kirby Wilbur, and Compass Media Networks VP of affiliate sales Adam Wilbur.

Doug Stephan Celebrates 30th Anniversary as a Continuously Running Independent Syndicated Host.  It began as a morning show titled “Good Day” in a basement studio at WCKY, Cincinnati 30 years ago this week and has been on the air as a general news/talk weekday show hosted and managed by veteran broadcaster Doug Stephan ever since.  Along the way, it evolved under different names and has been co-hosted by a variety of personalities alongside Stephan in addition to spawning a number of specialty shows under the corporate banner of Stephan Multimedia.  The program is currently titled the “DJV Show” and, in addition to central figure Doug Stephan, is co-hosted by Jennifer Horn and Victoria Keelan.  In marking the milestone, Stephan tells TALKERS, “I think for the first few months, I was talking to myself, and now after all these years, I have spoken to millions of listeners…how many…who really knows?  Plus being on over 1,400 stations in the collective over the years, I am humbled by the support of so many station managers and program directors.  If my count is correct, we still have some 24 stations who were on at the beginning or close to the beginning of this fabulous ride, and to all of them, and all of you, I say thank you from the bottom of my heart.  I could not remain as the only host/producer of these programs which have nothing but advertiser support… no big company, no big advertiser, no big benefactor – just me and the folks on the team made this happen…wow!”

TALKERS News Notes. Programming pro Michael Cross is named operations manager for Cherry Creek Media’s seven-station cluster in Wenatchee, Washington that includes news/talk KPQ, talk simulcast KKWN-FM/KWNC-AM, and sports talk KYSP in addition to four music-formatted stations. Cross – who starts his new gig on November 5 – was most recently OM with NRG Media’s rock KFMW and classic hits KOKZ duo in Waterloo, Iowa.  Cherry Creek Wenatchee market manager Kevin Andrus says, “Michael has a passion for radio and clearly understands the influence radio has in our listeners lives.  He understands how to win ratings, coach talent, and manage those under his direction.  Cherry Creek Media is excited to have Michael join the team.”…..Entercom news/talk WTIC-AM, Hartford inks a deal with Division III school University of Saint Joseph to broadcast the team’s home games during the school’s men’s basketball team’s inaugural season.  The partnership will run through the 2018-19 collegiate season.  The school recruited former University of Connecticut basketball coach Jim Calhoun as its head coach to launch its men’s basketball program.  As part of the partnership, Joe D’Ambrosio, co-host of the station’s “Mornings with Ray Dunaway” program, will handle play-by-play duties for the games…..SiriusXM is debuting a new, weekly show hosted by former open-wheel racing star Danny Sullivan – winner of the 1985 Indy 500 and 1988 CART Series champion – on the Dan Patrick Radio channel.   Titled, “The Real Spin with Danny Sullivan and Bill Armour” it will debut on October 15 and air every Monday…..The nationally syndicated “Motley Fool Money” radio program with host Chris Hill adds new affiliate KSOO-AM, Sioux Falls, South Dakota to its roster of stations.

Hurricane Michael Top News/Talk Story for Week of October 8-12.  The destruction in the Florida panhandle from Hurricane Michael was the most-talked-about story on news/talk radio this week, landing atop the Talkers TenTM. At #2 this week was the release of the UN Climate Change Report and its dire warning about continued global warming. Coming in at #3 was the global stock selloff and the related interest rate hikes, followed by the Brett Kavanaugh confirmation aftermath and the related issue of Democrats accused of incivility 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.  See this week’s entire chart here.

“Cousin” Bruce Morrow Is This Week’s Guest on Harrison Podcast. The legendary “Cousin” Bruce Morrow is this week’s guest on the award-winning PodcastOne series “The Michael Harrison Interview.” Morrow is one of the most celebrated radio personalities of all time whose remarkable career as a big-time disc jockey goes all the way back to the late 1950s when he broke into New York City radio at WINS and is still going strong today as a featured host on the SiriusXM Satellite Radio ‘60s on 6’ channel. Harrison and Morrow take a deep conversational dive into the early days of rock ‘n’ roll, their shared memories of growing up in Brooklyn, the great top 40 stations, the universals of radio communication, Morrow’s successful years in station ownership and the importance of keeping up with advances in technology. This is a must-listen for anyone who loves radio! Harrison says, “It was a thrill for me to be able to spend so much time in conversation with one of the true greats of our industry and culture. Cousin Brucie is full of joy – it pours out of him and that’s what keeps him going at such a remarkable and admirable level. It is deeply gratifying for me as a radio student, historian, and professional broadcaster to present this episode of my podcast to the world.” 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 of the TALKERS newsletter and on every page of Talkers.com.

Operations Manager Position Open at Dick Broadcasting’s Eastern NC Cluster. The five-station cluster of Dick Broadcasting in the Greenville/New Bern/Jacksonville, North Carolina market is seeking an operations manager. The company says the successful candidate will “manage a team of great program directors, air talent, and promotional personnel. We need someone that knows what leadership means! Someone who can inspire a team!” Dick Broadcasting operates sports talk WRNS-AM “The Bull,” CHR WERO-FM “Bob 93.3,” rock WXQR, country WRNS-FM, and adult hits WQSL/WQZL. The company says candidates must have experience as a supervisor, leader, music programmer, strategic thinker, and the ability to coach air talent. On air experienced preferred. The cluster is managed by market manager Tony Denton and vice president of programming Jason Goodman. E-mail all materials to newbernresumes@dbcradio.com. DBC is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

WQYK, Tampa Seeks AM Drive Co-Host. Tampa country outlet WQYK is seeking a morning show co-host. The Beasley Media Group station says the successful candidate must possess strong digital skills. “We’re seeking a great communicator and story teller with a great sense of how to create great content that will be displayed across all of our platforms. The perfect candidate is great on the air, great digitally, is forward thinking and is a true content innovator. This is a very active station, heavily involved in the community and requires someone who is fearless and willing to get out of the studio and meet listeners. If you are ready to work in a building full of incredible talent with a family atmosphere and a must-win attitude, we would love to hear from you.” Qualifications include: At least three years of proven success as a morning show co-host; full understanding of PPM best practice as it applies to an on-air show; proficient with Vox-Pro, WordPress social networking platforms, interviewing, and LIVE broadcasts; and more. Send materials to operations manager Travis Daily at: Travis.daily@bbgi.com. Beasley is an EOE.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. Phoenix-based, nationally syndicated morning duo “Johnjay & Rich” – Johnjay Van Es and Rich Berra – were inducted into the Arizona Broadcasters Hall of Fame at a ceremony last night at the Talking Stick Resort in Scottsdale.  The program is heard in Phoenix on iHeartMedia-owned flagship CHR KZZP “104.7 KISS FM” and is syndicated by Premiere Networks.  The program debuted in Tucson on KRQ.  It moved to KZZP in 2006.  It’s currently heard in 20 markets across the country…..The Envision Networks-syndicated weekly Wolfman Jack show adds new affiliates” WCCW-FM, Traverse City, Michigan; WOWY, State College, Pennsylvania; and KMGZ, Lawton, Oklahoma.  The stations add the classic radio program in time to also air the two-hour special “Wolfman Jack Halloween Party.”  WOWY program director Bob Steele says, “I have been searching for this show for years.  Knowing what a legend he was and how much fun the show was, I knew it was going to be an instant listener favorite!  He is probably the most referenced DJ in history. Everyone has heard of him.  I think it’s his personality that resonates with people.  He makes people laugh and feel good.  He often had a shocking side and I think that may be what keeps people glued to his every word.”…..Country artist Jessie Ritter from Fort Walton Beach, Florida is named the winner of Cumulus Media’s 4th annual “NASH Next” competition.  The final competition event took place last night (10/11) at Nashville’s Wildhorse Saloon and featured live performances from the top 10 national finalists, and a special performance by Radio Romance, last year’s “NASH Next” winner whose single “Weekend” rose to the top 40 on the country airplay charts.  Ritter will receive national radio airplay on Cumulus stations and gets a recording contract with Nash Next Records under the Big Machine Label Group umbrella…..Country music legend Dolly Parton was on the NASH campus in Nashville yesterday joining “Ty, Kelly and Chuck” in-studio to talk about her latest Netflix project, “Dumplin’,” in which she found herself working with Jennifer Aniston and Sia. Pictured below are (from l-r): Ty Bentli, Parton, Kelly Ford, and Chuck Wicks.

Thursday, October 11, 2018

| October 11, 2018

Emmis Fiscal Q2 Revenue Down 7%. Financial data from the second fiscal quarter of Emmis Communications’ year (ending August 31) is released and the company reports pro forma revenue was down 7% in markets that were down 4%.  The recent sales of KPWR, Los Angeles in August of 2017 and the St. Louis cluster on April 30 of this year make year-over-year figures not comparable.  Net revenue for the 2018 second fiscal quarter was $30.7 million, down from $41.8 million in the same quarter of 2017.  The company says underperformance is principally due to weather-related issues for New York’s Summer Jam in June, which led to its June revenues declining 16% for the month.  Emmis CEO Jeff Smulyan says, “Emmis’ radio revenues were up 2% in both July and August, and Emmis’ third quarter is off to a strong start with September revenues up 1% and October pacing up double digits, which would be our strongest month in four years.  Ratings remain strong in New York and continue to improve in Indianapolis.  Austin has rebranded KGSR as “Austin City Limits Radio,” the result of a multi-year licensing agreement with Austin City Limits Enterprises, LLC, creating an eclectic format sure to connect with Austin listeners.  Also, our dynamic pricing business, Digonex, has seen a surge of new clients in the last couple of months and we are more excited than ever about the prospects for that business moving forward.”

Smulyan Says Future of NextRadio and TagStation in Limbo.  In his comments about Emmis Communications’ fiscal Q2 numbers, CEO Jeff Smulyan gives an update on the status of the NextRadio and TagStation projects.  He says, “For the past several months, Emmis and other companies in the radio industry have been working diligently to form a consortium that would own and operate the NextRadio and TagStation businesses. The participating companies envisioned using their collective scale and resources to build an attribution platform for the radio industry that would have provided the common language and measurement that radio advertisers are demanding.  Unfortunately, the consortium has not been formed and these efforts appear to have been unsuccessful.  Because Emmis is unwilling and unable to continue to fund the NextRadio and TagStation businesses as they are currently structured, we plan to dramatically reduce the operations of these businesses and explore other means of eliminating the operating losses from these businesses in the coming months.”

PPM Analysis: All-News. Managing editor Mike Kinosian presents a look at the performances of radio stations based on 6+ data from Nielsen Audio’s September PPM survey, today focusing on all-news.  While Entercom’s WWJ, Detroit shows a marked improvement of almost a full share over its 6+ weekly AQH in September of last year, most of the country’s all-news stations declined year-over-year.  Hubbard Radio’s WTOP, Washington was again the only all-news station to rank #1 in its market, but Entercom’s KCBS-AM ranked #2 in both the San Francisco and San Jose markets, while WWJ, Detroit ranked #3 in September.  See the entire report here.

Dow Drops 800+, Hurricane Michael Hits Panhandle, UN Climate Change Report, Clintons Speaking Tour, Astronauts Emergency Landing, Missing Saudi Journalist, First Man Film, NFL Action, and MLB Playoffs Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (10/10).  The Dow dips more than 800 points on fears of interest rate hikes; Hurricane Michael slams into the Florida panhandle causing devastating flooding; reactions to the UN climate change report that heightens urgency for controlling carbon emissions; Bill and Hillary Clinton’s plan to launch a speaking tour after the November election; U.S. and Russian astronauts survive emergency landing in failed launch to International Space Station; concerns about Saudi deception in case of missing journalist; this weekend’s opening of the film First Man; the weeks’ NFL action; and the Major League Baseball playoffs were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

TALKERS News Notes. Fans of Howard Stern and Opie & Anthony will certainly get a kick out of the latest “Opie Radio” podcasts.  Gregg “Opie” Hughes recently hosted former Stern cast members “Stuttering John” Melendez, and Jackie “The Jokeman” Martling (along with “Opie Radio” regular Carl Ruiz) for what is being produced as a two-part podcast.  Westwood One says the podcasts reveal “personal stories about backstabbing and redemption in a post-Howard Stern satellite radio world.  This double-episode also covers the complicated history between the Howard Stern show, the Opie & Anthony show, ‘The Tonight Show with Jay Leno,’ and the revealing books available now from John and Jackie.”…..In a related story, Anthony Cumia is publishing a book that promises to tell all about his break-up with Gregg “Opie” Hughes, his suspensions and firings from radio gigs (including SiriusXM), and much more.  It’s called, Permanently Suspended: The Rise and Fall… and Rise Again of Radio’s Most Notorious Shock Jock (2018, Post Hill Press) and is to be published on November 20.  Cumia is currently producing and hosting his eponymous online program…..Chicago media writer Robert Feder reports that former longtime WTMX morning star Kathy Hart is going to make some appearances on Tribune’s news/talk WGN this month. Hart exited her role alongside Eric Ferguson on the Hubbard Radio hot AC back in April of 2017 – a move that has never been fully explained.  Since that time, she’s made a few appearances on WFLD-TV’s “Good Day Chicago” and now she’ll sit in with WGN’s Frank Fontana on his weekend show on the 14th and the 28th. The two will also sub for midday host John Williams next Wednesday (10/17)…..HRN Media Network, a Gen Media Partners company, hires broadcast and digital media expert Matt Feinberg as its chief strategy officer. HRN Media Network president Clark Logan says, “Matt is a longtime media industry veteran who has been involved with growth-oriented companies and is credited for leading their expansion across emerging technologies and platforms.  As HRN looks to meet the many opportunities that go beyond broadcast radio, Matt’s experience and knowledge will be pivotal in helping us achieve results for our content partners and advertisers.”…..E.W. Scripps’ news/talk WTMJ, Milwaukee is hosting another “The Hometown Call at Turner Hall” viewing party for the Milwaukee Brewers’ NLCS game three against the Los Angeles Dodgers on Monday, October 15.  The free event features a massive movie-screen broadcast at Turner Hall Ballroom synced to Hall of Famer Bob Uecker’s play-by-play broadcast as heard on WTMJ RADIO and the Associated Bank Brewers Radio Network…..Monday night’s Westwood One broadcast of the Green Bay Packers vs San Francisco 49ers game will feature the first-ever national NFL broadcast with a father-daughter broadcast team.  MNF play-by-play announcer Kevin Harlan (right) will be joined by his daughter Olivia Harlan Dekker (left), who will serve as the sideline reporter.  Harlan says, “It’s probably every parent’s dream to someday get a chance to work side-by-side with their child.  The fact that this will be at Lambeau Field where Olivia’s grandfather ran the Green Bay Packers for more than two decades and where she used to play as a little girl and attended many games growing up, makes it even more special.   To be a part of an NFL broadcast is always an honor, but to have our daughter as part of our crew is extraordinary and wonderful.  I know I speak for Olivia, my wife Ann, and our three other children in saying that this will be an incredibly proud moment for our family, and we offer our sincere thanks to Westwood One and the NFL.”

Chris Stigall Hosts Ann Coulter for WPHT Speaker Series. Pictured above are WPHT, Philadelphia morning host Chris Stigall (left) with author and conservative media figure Ann Coulter (right) at the Broadway Theater in Pitman, New Jersey appearing before a sell-out crowd of 1,000.  Coulter is on tour promoting her new book, Resistance is Futile! How The Trump-Hating Left Lost Its Collective Mind.  Stigall tells TALKERS magazine that the event also brought about 100 people out to protest Coulter’s appearance.

Entercom Launches LGBTQ+ Station ‘Out Now.’  The station is airing on a number of Entercom stations’ HD2 signals as well as on Radio.com. It’s launching today (10/11) to coincide with National Coming Out Day and is based at the company’s KAMP-HD2 in Los Angeles.  Entercom LA SVP and market manager Jeff Federman says, “We are thrilled to launch ‘Out Now,’ a passion project for our entire team, to give a voice to the LGBTQ community and its allies.  Our goal is to provide a high-quality listening experience and content for our community as well as a diverse platform with differing points of view.”

Broadcasters Foundation of America Prepared for Emergency Grants for Those Affected by Hurricane Michael. The Broadcasters Foundation of America is preparing for another influx of emergency grant applications from victims of Hurricane Michael, even as requests for emergency aid from those affected by Hurricane Florence are still coming in.  Broadcasters whose personal lives or property are acutely affected by Hurricanes Michael or Florence are encouraged to find out if they quality for an emergency grant by visiting https://broadcastersfoundation.org/hurricanerelief/State broadcast associations in affected areas are working with the BFoA to alert members that they can apply for aid.  The Broadcasters Foundation Emergency Grant Relief Program provides an expedited application process that is streamlined to deliver emergency funds as quickly as possible to qualifying individuals who work (or have worked) in broadcasting.  Emergency grants are based on financial need.  Earlier this year, the Broadcasters Foundation board of directors elected to double the maximum amount of an individual emergency grant from $1,000 to $2,000.  Last year, more than $300,000 was awarded to individual victims of a rash of disasters that included Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria, as well as wildfires and floods.  To learn more about emergency or monthly grants or to donate, please contact the Broadcasters Foundation at 212-373-8250 or info@thebfoa.org or visit www.broadcastersfoundation.org.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. The Atlanta Journal Constitution’s Rodney Ho reports that Ryan Cameron is soon to be back on the Atlanta airwaves at Urban One’s urban contemporary simulcast of WAMJ/WUMJ “Majic 107.5/97.5,” beginning November 5.  Cameron will also be working with the company to “create content and strategy.”  He’ll host afternoons, bumping current PM drive personalities Silas “SiMan” Alexander and Chubb Rock to the evening show…..Entercom is launching its new morning show on Twin Cities country outlet WMNB “BUZ’N @ 102.9” that will star Mandy James, Paul “PT” Thomas, and current AM host Mike Dubs, a.k.a. Michael Wilczynski.  James was most recently host of the morning show at Townsquare Media’s CHR WZOK, Rockford.  Thomas comes to WMNB from Milestone Radio’s country KLCI, Elk River, Minnesota…..The Chicago-based rock band Friday Pilots Club is the winner of Cumulus Media’s 2nd annual neXt2rock competition.  Close to 1,700 artists entered the second installment of the neXt2rock franchise.  The final competition event featured live performances from the top five national finalists and a special performance by Roc Nation recording artist Dorothy. The winner of neXt2rock was selected by a panel of rock music luminaries and industry professionals, including Big Machine Label Group president & CEO Scott Borchetta; fashion designer and record label head John Varvatos; musician, songwriter, and producer Desmond Child; Korn frontman Jonathan Davis; and Fozzy frontman, actor, and wrestler Chris Jericho.

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

| October 10, 2018

Price: Today’s Radio Handle Is ‘Michael.’ Continuity and crisis management expert Howard Price writes today that Gulf Coast stations should be all about Hurricane Michael.  With the storm expected to make landfall later today, Price is shocked that so many Gulf Coast radio stations were still in regular programming mode with a potential category 4 hurricane headed straight for them.  Hopefully, those stations have prepared for the worst.  Price offers some advice to those stations who have not prepared for an emergency with a simple outline of how to create an emergency plan that all station staffers can understand and execute in a short amount of time. Remember, not all emergencies come with the days of warnings that hurricanes do.  Some weather events come seemingly out of nowhere.  Man-made emergencies such as shootings or other forms of civil unrest also leave little time to plan ahead.  Read Price’s entire piece here.

KKOB-AM Is Voice of Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta.  Pictured above is the KKOB-AM, Albuquerque hot air balloon (center) among the dozens of other balloons lifting off at the 47th Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta.  The event opened on October 6 and runs through the 14th.  The Cumulus Media news/talk station is the official radio voice of the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta. The station is broadcasting live every day from the event with traffic, weather, and official updates starting at 4:57 am each day.

JVC Media Expands KC Armstrong’s ‘WMAP Radio’ Show to Orlando. The daily, one-hour radio program “WMAP Radio” starring former, longtime Howard Stern show cast member KC Armstrong is branching out from its home on WRCN, Riverhead, Long Island “103.9 LI News.”  JVC Media is syndicating Armstrong’s program and the first affiliate station is the company’s rock WOTW-HD2/W231CT “BUD 94.1” in Orlando.  The program’s full title is “World’s Most Amazing People with KC Armstrong,” and the station says, “In this era of bad news, fake news, Internet trolls, and general weary cynicism, KC is making quite a positive impression on Long Island and expansion of his show is the next evolution.  KC, who many people remember as a cast member of Howard Stern’s terrestrial radio show back in the day, comes to this pursuit carrying some damn dramatic baggage.”  KC adds, “My first book comes out on October 27.  It’s called Simply Amazing and it includes my struggle with mental illness and health problems along with 11 of my most inspirational interviews.  This will be a wonderful opportunity to share this with listeners all over the country.” WRCN general manager Bruce Shepard says, “‘LI News Radio’ is proud to have served as the flagship station for KC Armstrong over the past year.  We look forward to the next evolution as his show’s expansion is sure to bring more access to celebrity guests and entertainment.”

TALKERS News Notes. The New York Daily News reports that former WFAN, New York morning show co-host Craig Carton is asking the court not to use the phrase “Ponzi scheme” during his coming trial on fraud charges, arguing that it would prejudice the jury against him.  Carton is facing charges in federal court in New York for allegedly using millions of dollars from investors in his after-market concert ticket business to pay off personal expenses, including large gambling debts.  But prosecutors argue that a search of his cell phone indicates Carton himself executed several online searches for the terms “Ponzi scheme” and “Ponzi” in the months prior to his arrest.  Jury selection for his trial is to begin on October 29…..iHeartRadio and HowStuffWorks in partnership with School of Humans launch a new, true-crime podcast called “Hell and Gone.”  This podcast dives deep into the murder of Rebekah Gould, a 22-year old college student who was mysteriously murdered on her way to a gas station in Ozarks, Arkansas 14 years ago.  It’s hosted by Catherine Townsend…..Entercom all-news WCBS-AM, New York names Anita Bonita to the station’s staff as a weekend news anchor…..Cumulus Media names Scotty Bastable VP and director of sales for its San Francisco cluster that includes news/talk station KGO and KSFO. Bastable was most recently agency and corporate development manager for CBS 360.  He also served in the Bay Area as general manager of Entercom’s adult contemporary KOIT.  He begins his new role with Cumulus on November 15.

Nikki Haley to Step Down, Kavanaugh Confirmation Aftermath, Tracking Hurricane Michael, AMAs/Taylor Swift Speech, U.S.-China Trade War, Sears to Enter Bankruptcy, Missing Saudi Journalist, NFL Action, and MLB Playoffs Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (10/9). The announcement that Nikki Haley will leave her Ambassador to the UN position at the end of the year; the aftermath of the contentious nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court; the tracking of Hurricane Michael as it heads toward the Florida panhandle; Tuesday night’s American Music Awards and Taylor Swift’s “get out the vote” speech; the trade war between the U.S. and China; a report Sears has hired a firm to begin bankruptcy proceedings; concerns missing Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi was murdered by the Saudi regime; the weekend’s NFL action; and the Major League Baseball playoffs were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Pioneer Valley Radio Reaches Special Milestone.  Now in its fourth year of service to Western Massachusetts, hyper-local online radio station, Pioneer Valley Radio (www.pioneervalleyradio.com) has reached a milestone that GM/morning host Brad Shepard describes as “extremely gratifying.”  Yesterday (10/9), the station posted its 200th on demand special feature program.  Pioneer Valley Radio’s “special feature” programs include interviews with community leaders and in-depth reports on local people and activities that are presented to its listenership above and beyond its daily fare of a morning show, regularly scheduled specialty hosts, video events, and live, local sports play-by-play.  The outlet was launched in 2014 by Shepard and TALKERS publisher Michael Harrison as an experiment in digital era “media station” development.  Shepard – a former longtime Springfield, MA morning host on iHeartMedia’s WHYN and Cumulus Media’s WMAS – describes Pioneer Valley Radio’s format as “non-partisan, personality-oriented public affairs covering local politics, business, public safety, health care, and arts & entertainment.”

Music Radio News and Career Moves. After the recent resignation of long-time program director Ron Valeri, Entercom names Joe Calgaro program director for its active rock WAAF, Boston.  Calgaro leaves his post at Saga Communications’ WHQG, Milwaukee “102.9 The Hog” to make the move to Boston…..iHeartMedia announces Marc Anthony is being honored with the third annual iHeartRadio Premio Corazón Latino Award at the 2018 iHeartRadio Fiesta Latina on November 3 at the American Airlines Arena in Miami.  In addition, Marc Anthony, Manuel Turizo and Mau y Ricky are joining the lineup that includes previously announced performers Pitbull, Nicky Jam, Steve Aoki, Farruko, Nacho, Becky G, and Zion & Lennox…..Friends, family, and co-workers are mourning the death of classic rock WBVX, Lexington, Kentucky air personality Shea Maddox, who committed suicide early Monday morning.  Maddox was the midday host at the LM Communications’ station…..Pictured below is “NASH Nights Live” co-host Elaina Smith (left) with country star Kane Brown (right) backstage at the American Music Awards in Los Angeles.  Brown picked up three awards at last night’s ceremonies: Favorite Male Artist – Country; Favorite Album – Country (for his self-titled album), and Favorite Song – Country (for “Heaven”).

Tuesday, October 9, 2018

| October 9, 2018

ESPN’s WMVP, Chicago to Celebrate 20 Years as Sports Talker. Chicago sports talk outlet WMVP “ESPN1000” is celebrating its 20th anniversary as a sports talk radio station this Friday (10/12), dubbed “Fanniversary.”  The station will broadcast live from Austin’s Fuel Room in Libertyville, including the ESPN Radio morning show “Golic & Wingo,” plus “Kap & Co,” “Carmen & Jurko,” and “Waddle & Silvy.”  WMVP vice president and general manager Jim Pastor says, “ESPN 1000 has provided Chicago sports fans with an outlet for listening to, sharing and experiencing every top Chicago sports story for the past twenty years.  We gave them a front-row seat during championship runs by the Blackhawks, Cubs, White Sox, and Bulls and we introduced them to new voices who would become part of their daily routine.  It’s a great source of pride knowing the role we play in keeping Chicago sports fans informed and entertained.”

Marty Griffin’s Return to KDKA-AM Postponed by Fall.  Late morning talk show host Marty Griffin did not return to the air on Monday as many of his listeners had hoped. The KDKA-AM, Pittsburgh host has been battling throat cancer brought about by the HP virus and has been off the air recently while undergoing chemotherapy, radiation, and immunotherapy. Griffin posted a video from his hospital bed at UPMC Cancer Center explaining that he blacked out early Monday and hit his head, though assuring his listeners he did not suffer a stroke. Griffin was diagnosed back in August and is keeping listeners posted on his treatment and progress via his blog here.

Elvis Duran Invites Radio Biz to This Year’s ‘Carney Awards.’ This is the fourth year Premiere Networks and “Z100” New York personality Elvis Duran has been serving as executive producer of “The Carney Awards” – named after Art Carney and dedicated to honoring exemplary character actors – and this time Duran is inviting all of his radio industry friends to attend the star-studded event.  It takes place October 28 at The Broad Stage in Santa Monica, California.  This year’s class of honorees include: Joe MortonJessica Walter, Joe Pantoliano, M. Emmet Walsh, James Cromwell, and Bruce Greenwood.  Comedian Patton Oswalt hosts the evening’s program. Red carpet begins at 3:00 pm and the televised show begins promptly at 5:00 pm with a cocktail reception following. Tickets are complimentary to radio industry members.  RSVP to david@elvisdurangroup.com or amir@foresterpublicrelations.com. The Carney Awards were created by Elvis Duran Group CEO David Katz, his brother Jim Katz, an Emmy Award winning producer, and Brian Carney, actor/voice-over artist and Art’s son.  The Carney Awards is a joint production between The Elvis Duran Group and Radcliffe Road Pictures.  Elvis Duran, the Katz brothers and Carney are executive producers.

TALKERS News Notes. WHP, Harrisburg afternoon talk show host Ken Matthews will be attending the opening of the new film, First Man, at the local Regal Cinemas to hand out “moon flags” to moviegoers this Friday (10/12) at 7:00 pm.  Matthews says that, as many people are aware, the film reportedly does not show Neil Armstrong – played by Ryan Gosling – planting the U.S. flag on the moon.  Matthews will tell moviegoers, “By holding your “moon flag” up to the screen at that moment, you can get the exact effect.  You may keep your moon flag and hold it up to the sky as you gaze at the moon for years to come.  One moon flag per American citizen at the event.”…..In Washington, DC, Hubbard Radio’s FederalNewsRadio.com and WFED-AM is changing its name to Federal News Network, a move aimed at highlighting its many distribution platforms and channels that include on-air, online, podcasts, video, and more.  Federal News Network editor-in-chief Lisa Wolfe says, “Our reporters, editors, radio hosts, and producers will continue to find and share the most important news of the day across all platforms, making Federal News Network a great meeting place for thought-leaders to have conversations, share ideas, and discuss topics meaningful to the federal workforce.”….The nationally syndicated financial talk radio show “Motley Fool Money” with host Chris Hill adds new affiliate station WSAU, Wausau, Wisconsin to its roster of affiliates.

Kavanaugh Confirmation Aftermath, November Midterms, Columbus Day-Indigenous Persons Day, Deadly New York Limo Crash, Clintons Speaking Tour, Tracking Hurricane Michael, Weekend’s NFL Action, and MLB Playoffs Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (10/8).  The response to the Senate’s confirmation of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court; the coming November midterm elections and speculation about which party will control congress; the Columbus Day versus Indigenous Persons Day debate; the upstate New York limo crash that killed 20; Bill and Hillary Clinton to embark on a joint speaking tour; the potential strength and path of Hurricane Michael; the weekend’s NFL action; and the MLB Playoffs were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. For air during Veterans Day weekend (Saturday through Monday 11/10-12) Westwood One is making available the annual Kix Brooks program “A Salute to Our Military Veterans.”  The host of Westwood One’s “American Country Countdown” rallies his long list of friends to join him for this musical salute, including Tim McGraw, Chris Young, Dierks Bentley, Sam HuntCole Swindell, and more.  These country superstars talk about their appreciation for the nation’s military and Kix Brooks plays the most popular songs that capture America’s patriotic spirit…..iHeartMedia is announcing the lineups at the numerous “Jingle Ball” concerts taking place in cities across the country.  The list of performers playing at the concerts varies from city to city but many will include: Cardi B., Shawn Mendes, Calvin Harris, Dua Lipa, Alessia Cara, Bebe Rexha, Bazzi, NF, G-Eazy, and Sabrina Carpenter.

Monday, October 8, 2018

| October 8, 2018

KQED Names Blakley Executive Director/Radio Programming. Four-year Minnesota Public Radio program director Jonathan Blakley is appointed executive director of radio programming for Northern California Public Broadcasting news/talk KQED, San Francisco. The Western Michigan University graduate previously was a senior producer and editor at NPR and launched all-news on WKZO, Kalamazoo. He has also worked for all-news WWJ, Detroit and the Associated Press. In other station news, KQED promotes executive director of news Holly Kernan to chief content officer. She will now oversee news, arts, science, and education for radio and TV programming. Kerman joined the station in 2014 from San Francisco Unified School District news/talk KALW, where she was news and public affairs director. Meanwhile, managing editor Ethan Lindsey succeeds Kernan as executive director of news. Among persons 6+ in Nielsen Audio’s September 2018 report for San Francisco, KQED is #1 for the eighth straight month. Its gain of four-tenths pulls the plug on five downward trends in a row that accounted for a -2.5 (8.9 – 8.4 – 8.1 – 7.1 – 6.7 – 6.4, 6+). In San Jose, KQED progresses from sixth to fourth. It finished first in that Bay Area market between January and June.

Harrison:  Neither Side is as Bad as Political Opponents ClaimTALKERS publisher Michael Harrison, described by TV anchor/moderator/commentator Carol Costello as “the voice of reason” appeared today as a panelist on CNN’s Headline News channel (HLN) to discuss the impact of the Brett Kavanaugh confirmation on the coming mid-term elections.  He joined other panelists Republican Scott Jennings and Democrat Nomiki Konst.  Jennings supported the President’s assertion that the Democrats and Liberals have become an unruly mob unfit to govern.  Konst expressed the opposite view that working people have never faced the level of economic inequality that presently exists and that the Kavanaugh addition to the Supreme Court feeds into the “women are doomed” scenario.  When asked by Costello if we as a nation are “going to remain as divided  – men versus women, Democrat versus Republican – as we are now permanently forever more?” Harrison replied by saying “Hopefully not permanently.  Let’s hope it ebbs and flows as it has through history.  Both sides are extremely energized.  The coming mid-term election promises to be as exciting, if not more, than a presidential election.  But we can’t tell which side will feel that way in a few weeks on Election Day when it will be decided by voter turn-out. From a media standpoint, which is the lens through which I view this, even though both sides in ‘biased media’ express righteous indignation – and there is extreme bias on both sides in the media  – both sides are loving this because this is a golden era for media that plays the news for the American public viewing it as a spectator sport.  The demonization of the ‘other side’ is just that – excessive hyperbolic demonization.  Nothing is going to be so terrible no matter how it plays out.  Women are not doomed and the Democrats are not a mob.  And if for some reason Trump loses his majority in Congress, he’ll work that to his advantage as well.  It’ll be his excuse for not fulfilling all his campaign promises to his base.”

One Putt Lands O’Rorke as VP/GM. Ten-year Lotus Broadcasting Fresno market manager Kevin O’Rorke joins cross-town One Putt Broadcasting as vice president and general manager, succeeding Josh Riley. One Putt partner John Ostlund comments, “We are excited to have Kevin on our team. His passion for radio, [as well as his] experience with many of our clients and involvement in non-profit organizations, makes him a great fit.” Another One Putt partner – Chris Pacheco – notes, “I have known and worked with Kevin many times over the years – he brings tremendous experience to our team.” California State University-Fullerton alum O’Rorke adds, “Radio is an exciting industry, but locally-owned radio with the kind of community focus that Chris and John have demonstrated over the years is very unique. I am looking forward to getting started and making a difference.” One Putt’s Fresno cluster includes sports talk KFIG “940 ESPN Radio”; KFRR “New Rock 104.1”; classic rock KJFX “95.7 The Fox”; triple A KJWL “K-Jewel 105.5”; CHR KWDO “99.3 Now FM”; and classic hits-oldies KYNO-AM.

Daniel Joins Fresno’s KVPR and Bakersfield’s KPRX As News Director. News/talk KQED, San Francisco reporter Alice Daniel is appointed news director of similarly-formatted KVPR, Fresno and KPRX, Bakersfield. Valley Public Radio interim president Joe Moore comments, “Alice is a talented reporter and educator, who always finds a way to bring out something special or unexpected in her stories. Six years ago, we didn’t have any local reporters at the station; now, we have three. Our work is increasingly being recognized with awards at the regional and national level.” Daniel remarks, “I am excited by the prospect of working with other reporters to cover this diverse and story-rich region in a way that makes a difference for the community at large. I love the creative process of figuring out the best way to tell a compelling story. There is nothing I love more in journalism than finding that gem of a story that no one else has unearthed.” In addition to contributing to Success Magazine, Daniel – who has a master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University – has taught journalism for 17 years at Fresno State University.

TALKERS News Notes.  In a presentation to be made this coming Saturday (10/13), Cumulus Media San Francisco news/talk KSFO morning host (5:00 am – 9:00 am) Brian Sussman will receive the Don Sherwood Award from the Bay Area Radio Hall of Fame. The listener-voted honor recognizes the Bay Area’s favorite news/talk radio broadcaster for 2018. Sussman replaced Lee Rodgers in morning drive on KSFO in February 2010 ….. Beginning this Thursday (10/11), The New York Times debuts “The Argument,” a weekly opinion podcast hosted by three of the paper’s op-ed columnists – David Leonhardt, Ross Douthat, and Michelle Goldberg ….. As reported by the St. Louis Dispatch, “Real Housewife of Orange County” Meghan King Edmonds will appear with “Meghan’s Must Haves” every week on the Sunday morning edition of Rick & Tracey Ellis’ show on Entercom St. Louis news/talk KFTK “FM Newstalk 97.1.” The segment starts this Sunday (10/14). Edmonds is the wife of former St. Louis Cardinals and Los Angeles Angels outfielder/current Fox Sports Midwest analyst Jim Edmonds ….. The former six-year general manager of Tri-States Public Radio and an adjunct instructor at Western Illinois UniversityJonathan Ahl, will be a Rolla, Missouri-based reporter for University of Missouri-St. Louis news/talk KWMU. Ahl previously was news director and reporter at Iowa Public Radio ….. KTTC-TV, Austin (Minnesota) multimedia journalist James Bunner has been fired for wearing a “Make America Great Again” hat while covering President Trump’s appearance last Thursday in Rochester, Minnesota. KTTC news director Noel Sederstrom said Bunner was let go for wearing campaign gear while covering the political event – not because of his personal politics. Sederstrom told BuzzFeed News, “[Bunner] violated our policy so he’s no longer with us. We don’t allow our people to wear campaign clothing while on assignment.” On the day of Trump’s inauguration, Bunner posted a video of himself on Facebook dancing to “Celebration” (Kool & The Gang). KTTC removed Bunner’s online profile from its website last Friday …..  Listeners will be able to use touch and voice to tune into live iHeartRadio radio stations on Portal and Portal+ – Facebook’s home video communications devices. The Portal comes with a variety of features such as AI-powered video cameras, smart sound technology, and crystal-clear audio. Powered by Amazon’s Alexa voice control system, the video chat devices were introduced today (10/8).

Richard Neer Pens Sixth Murder Mystery Book.  Longtime TALKERS columnist Richard Neer, a 30-year sports talk veteran at WFAN, New York and former WNEW-FM, New York radio great, has released his sixth Riley King murder mystery, An American Storm (Amazon Digital Services, 2018). This one has a strong radio sub-plot as King’s cohort Rick Stone deals with a career crisis after moving from making big dollars at a large market station to a small labor-of-love outlet, attempting to create a free form talk and music format. He is frustrated by a dearth of callers and the aging demo. Neer is well-known for his landmark radio non-fiction FM, the Rise and Fall of Rock Radio (Villard, 2001) and is developing a large following as a writer of the mystery fiction genre. He can be reached for interviews at novelistcafe@windstream.net. The new book is available at Amazon in both Kindle and paperback editions.

Kavanaugh Confirmation and Ensuing Protests Across the Nation Top the List of Stories Discussed on News/Talk Radio Over the Weekend.  The U.S. Senate Confirmation and Swearing-in of controversial Judge Brett Kavanaugh and the protests that took place during and after the vote topped the list of stories discussed on news/talk radio over the weekend.  These stories were followed by the US-China trade war; November midterm elections and the battle for control of Congress; the new USMCA deal; the disappearance of the head of Interpol after traveling to China; NFL action during week number five and the MLB divisional playoffs which were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio over the weekend, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Welsh, Porreca Join JAM Media Solutions. East Orange, New Jersey-based JAM Media Solutions names Donovan Welsh executive vice president of sales and Kerry Porreca executive vice president of finance. JAM Media Solutions closed on its media properties last Wednesday (10/3). They take over eight media properties in Outer Banks, North Carolina and Muscatine, Iowa. The Outer Banks properties include WCMS “Water Country”; hot AC WCXL “Beach 104”; WVOD “99.1 The Sound – The Outer Banks’ Alternative”; WZPR “Classic Rock 92.3”; and “The Outer Banks Voice.” The Muscatine properties include classic rock KMCS “Vintage Sound 93.1”; KWPC “The Voice of Muscatine; and “The Voice of Muscatine.” JAM Media Solutions president and CEO Jonathan A. Mason, Sr. remarks, “In the early years of my career in New York, I worked with Mr. Welsh and am honored that he has decided to join JAM Media to oversee our sales efforts. Mrs. Porreca is a veteran finance executive and has extensive knowledge of the Outer Banks. She is uniquely positioned to help us achieve our goal of giving back to the communities we seek to serve. I am humbled to step into the next phase of our collective journey. Our goal is to deliver a first-rate experience for the communities we serve. We love our radio local and our listeners will come to know that for themselves.” Most recently, Welsh was sales manager of Entercom New York sports talk WFAN. Porreca has spent the majority of her professional career in the manufacturing and advertising areas.

 

 

Music Radio News and Career Moves. Additions at Entercom Los Angeles CHR KAMP “97.1 Amp Radio” find DJ Vice hosting “DJ Vice in the Mix” weekdays from 5:00 pm – 6:00 pm and Krystal Bee joining the station’s weekend lineup. According to Entercom Los Angeles senior vice president and market manager Jeff Federman, “DJ Vice and Krystal Bee have been household names in the Southern California radio and music scene for more than 25 years collectively. We look forward to them delivering a fresh listening experience for fans.” DJ Vice remarks, “As someone who was born and raised in Los Angeles, it is an honor to be a part of the ‘97.1 Amp Radio’ family. This mix is so fulfilling to do for my city, and hopefully, I can ease the pain of our listeners as they sit in L.A. traffic.” Krystal Bee notes that, “[KAMP] has a vision for radio that is so exciting. I have loved working with the team and I am excited about everything the future holds for me, the station, and our amazing listeners.” In 2011, DJ Vice was named one of “America’s Best DJs” by DJ Times. Prior to joining Entercom, Krystal Bee held on-air roles for cross-town rhythmic CHR KPWR “Power 106” since 2011 ….. Following last week’s departure of brand manager/program director Ron Valeri, Entercom Boston-owned WAAF “The Only Station That Really Rocks” names Joe Galgaro, PD of Saga Communications Milwaukee’s WHQG “102.9 The Hog,” as Valeri’s replacement ….. Most recently doing mid-days for Beasley Media Group Tampa’s WQYK “99.5 New Country Hits,” June Knight joins Entercom Miami’s similarly-formatted WKIS “Country 99.5” as morning drive co-host, where she will pair with assistant program director/music director Tim “TC” Conlon as “TC & June. Knight previously worked in Boston at CHR WXKS-FM “Kiss 108” and WODS …  As we reported last week, Louie Diaz is promoted to vice president/contemporary for the Cumulus Radio Station Group, continuing his role as operations manager for Cumulus Media Atlanta and as PD for CHR WWWQ “Q100.” Associated with that move, Cumulus Media vice president/contemporary programming (CHR and hot AC) Cat Thomas departs. Thomas joined Cumulus Media nearly three years ago, after a 27-year career with CBS Radio Las Vegas where he was vice president/programming. For approximately 20 years, he programmed that company’s Las Vegas CHR, KLUC ….. Morning co-host Brian Fowler exits WGAR. He joined “Country 99.5.” in 2011 to team with LeeAnn Sommers, who remains with the iHeartMedia Cleveland outlet ….. Next year’s iHeartRadio “ALTer Ego” officially sold out on the first day on sale. The second annual music event, which will broadcast live (1/19/2019) across over 70 iHeartRadio alternative and rock stations, reportedly sold out in less than a minute of being on sale to the general public. The “ALTer Ego” lineup at Los Angeles’ Fabulous Forum includes The Killers, Weezer, Rise Against, Twenty One Pilots, Muse, Bishop Briggs, and The Revivalists. Chief programming officer for iHeartMedia Tom Poleman notes, “It was remarkable to watch how fast tickets sold out. All tickets immediately went the moment we made them available. It speaks to the power of the lineup and how fast the ALTer Ego brand has grown in just two years.” Meanwhile, iHeartMedia president/national sales, marketing & partnerships Tim Castelli comments, “The lineup is incredible and reaches the millennial trend leaders who make up the mega-event’s core audience. Given such an amazing response, we are expecting this to break social chatter records like we have done with our lineup on our other iHeart marquee events” ….. Former WPIA “98.5 Kiss FM,” Peoria (Illinois) program director Jonathan Steele is named to a similar position at Martz Communications Pittsburgh urban contemporary WAMO …..Tennessee Senate candidate Phil Bredesen and congressional hopeful Jim Cooper have picked up a big-name endorsement – Taylor Swift. The singer usually doesn’t express her political beliefs but notes on Instagram, “Due to several events in my life and in the world the past two years, I feel very differently about that now.” Bredesen and Cooper are Democrats ….. At the box office, Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga’s “A Star Is Born” remake took in $41.3 million. According to comScore, with $174.5 million in tickets sold at United States and Canadian theaters, it was easily the best October weekend ever…. Starting today (10/8), iHeartMedia Columbus CHR WNCI-originated “Dave (Kaelin) & Jimmy (Jam)” will air (6:00 am – 10:00 am) on Alpha Media Canton (Ohio) hot AC WHBC-FM “Mix” 94.1.” WHBC-FM operations manager Bo Matthews comments, “Dave & Jimmy are Ohio guys [who] celebrate the region with their content. They experience all the pain that comes with being Cleveland sports fans. I am super excited for the show they will be providing us every weekday morning.” According to Jimmy Jam, “Canton is my hometown so I have about 200 relatives [who] will be listening every day.”

Friday, October 5, 2018

| October 5, 2018

BREAKING NEWS: Jack Swanson to Return to KGO and KSFO as PD. Former KGO and KSFO, San Francisco program director Jack Swanson is returning to the Cumulus Media news/talk radio stations to serve as program director of both stations.  This will be Swanson’s second tour of duty at KGO, having served for a number of years up until 2011 as PD, OM and eventually VP of programming at KGO and sister station KSFO.  He left at that time due to a massive cost-cutting that took place in the aftermath of Cumulus acquiring the station in a “merger” with its former parent company Citadel Broadcasting.  Swanson most recently served a two-year stint as news director of then-CBS owned KCBS-AM, San Francisco between 2015 and 2017.  Swanson says, “People have asked why I’m returning.  Simple.  This is the most exciting time in the history of these iconic stations.  I’m jazzed about their future.  Returning to work with [market manager] Doug Harvill and the support of a re-energized Cumulus is going to be an amazing adventure.  I’m excited to be a part of the new Cumulus!

Talk Radio Examines #MeToo Movement One Year Later.  It is exactly one year since The New York Times triggered what has come to be known as the #MeToo movement by publishing an exposé by reporters Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey on movie mogul Harvey Weinstein’s sexual improprieties that eventually brought him down along with a list of prominent men in the entertainment, business, media and political industries.  After a couple of turbulent weeks of headline dominating events emanating from Judge Brett Kavanaugh‘s controversial confirmation hearing culminating in what is certain to be a historic and consequential vote by the U.S. Senate, TALKERS looks at the #MeToo movement through lens of some of news/talk radio’s prominent female hosts.  We spoke with the following women working in talk radio to get their points of view: WABC, New York’s Rita Cosby; WGCH, Greenwich, Connecticut’s Lisa Wexler; SiriusXM’s Karen Hunter; WFTL, Fort Lauderdale’s Joyce Kauffman; KRLA, Los Angeles’ Jennifer Horn; and KMZQ, Las Vegas’ Heidi Harris.  Read the story here.

Austin Rhodes Renews with WGAC-FM, Augusta. Georgia talk show host Austin Rhodes signs a new, long-term contract with Beasley Media Group to continue hosting his afternoon drive program on the company’s Augusta news/talk station WGAC-FM. Rhodes celebrated his 26th year on the air at WGAC-FM in July and Beasley Augusta VP and market manager Kent Dunn says, “Austin has the longest-running radio talk show in Augusta, Georgia history.  His commitment to WGAC listeners, the community, and Beasley Media Group is tremendous.  We are fortunate to have him on our team for the future.”  Company EVP of programming Justin Chase adds, “Beasley is committed to top quality local content across our platforms and Austin Rhode’s show is loved by our clients and listeners in the Augusta market.  Austin has been with Beasley for many years and we are thrilled that he’ll be with us for many more!”

Beasley Adds QCB for Commentary Across Charlotte Stations. The personality known as QCB, a.k.a. Tremaine Sloan, joins the Beasley Media Group Charlotte stations as a part-time sports entertainment talent.  He’ll will host a podcast called “3 with the QCB.”  QCB previously was heard on Entercom’s crosstown sports talk WFNZ.  When he is not on the airwaves, Q performs stand-up comedy at The Comedy Zone in Charlotte, as well as at similar clubs across the Southeast.   Beasley Charlotte VP and market manager Bill Schoening says, “I’m really excited to be reunited with QCB and hear him on our airwaves.  We look forward to listening to his great sports entertainment commentary.”

Report: 13% of Americans Don’t Trust Any Traditional News Source.  That’s one of the conclusions of a study by Simmons Research that attempts to quantify the American public’s trust of 38 major news outlets.  The data was culled from an online study fielded the week of August 14 consisting of 2,009 people, weighted to the U.S. population.  The Wall Street Journal was rated most trustworthy among 57.7% of respondents.  The Daily Caller came in last at 22.5%.  Simmons Research says, “Based on our study, it is clear that news media is in crisis overall.  The average percentage of respondents who rated news sources as trustworthy or very trustworthy was just 40.1% — not a ringing endorsement for journalism in general.” Across the 38 outlets in the study, the news organizations that present from a decided political perspective – FOX News, MSNBC, Huffington Post, Daily Beast – did not fare as well as the traditional news organizations such as ABC, NBC, CBS, The New York Times, Forbes and even BBC News.  The study found that 13% of respondents found none of the 38 sources listed to be trustworthy.  Simmons calls this segment Doubters and further explores this group’s political, consumer, and lifestyle profile in the study.  It notes that 62.2% of Doubters voted for Donald Trump in 2018 and 27.8% voted for Hillary Clinton.  Simmons says, “Our data suggest that about six million of the 129 million people who voted in the 2016 election were Doubters.  Among this group, Trump beat Clinton by about two million votes.  Consider that Trump won Pennsylvania by 44,292 votes, Wisconsin by 22,748 votes, and Michigan by just 10,704 votes.  Given this narrow electoral margin, Doubters’ vote choices may have played an important role in the election result.” Read the study here.

iHeartMedia CEO Bob Pittman Sits for In-Depth Interview with KHOW, Denver’s Ross Kaminsky. Usually, interviewing the chairman and CEO of the company from which you draw your paycheck means you’re going to be very careful not to ask him any “sensitive” questions, but KHOW, Denver’s Ross Kaminsky conducts a wide-ranging and interesting chat with iHeartMedia chief Bob Pittman – touching on everything from how he got into radio to his love affair with piloting airplanes to his business philosophy and how that affects how he operates iHeartMedia.  Regarding podcasting, Pittman says, “Podcasting is to talk radio and talk shows on the radio as streaming is to music on the radio.” While working for Bob Ross at MTV, Pittman says he took some advice he got and applies it to his work at iHeart.  “In this company, you will never get fired for making mistakes, you’ll get fired for not making mistakes because that shows that you’re not trying anything new and the assets that we’ve given you to manage will wilt away under your leadership.”  Listen to the interview here.

Kavanaugh Investigation Top News/Talk Story for Week of October 1-5.  The FBI investigation into allegations of sexual misconduct by Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh was the most-talked-about story on news/talk radio this week, landing atop the Talkers TenTM. At #2 this week was the New York Times story suggesting the Trump family passed its wealth down to the children through tax schemes.  Coming in at #3 was the investigation into possible connections between Trump campaign operatives and Russian agents, followed by the allegations of abuse by U.S. Rep and DNC deputy chair Keith Ellison 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. See this week’s entire chart here.

 

Music Radio News and Career Moves. WKTU, New York-based radio personality Sean “Hollywood” Hamilton and iHeartMedia New York announce they’ve agreed to terms on a contract extension.  Hamilton will continue his current role as host of his weekday afternoon show on “103.5 KTU” in New York City.  He also renews and extends his partnership with Premiere Networks to syndicate his trio of radio programs – “The Remix Top 30 Countdown with Hollywood Hamilton,” “Weekend Top 30 with Hollywood Hamilton,” and “Weekend Top 30 with DJ Pup Dawg” – that broadcast on 120 stations worldwide…..In Charlotte, iHeartMedia names Sarah Lee the new morning drive co-host on WKKT “96.9 The Kat” alongside Country Radio Hall of Famer Paul Schadt on the “Paul Schadt and Sarah Lee in the Morning” program, effective October 22.  Lee comments, “I’m ecstatic to return to Charlotte and work on-air with one of my idols in the genre my parents raised me in.  Paul Schadt is not only a talent that I have respected for years, but he is a legend in the format, a mentor, a peer, and a friend.  It is my deepest honor to be able to call him partner and a dream come true to wake up the Carolinas on ‘96.9 The Kat.’”  Lee was most recently an artist social media manager with Black River Entertainment…..The CBS News Radio Network is launching a new service called CBS Connect, designed to provide news, entertainment, and information specifically designed for FM music radio listeners.  Its flagship program is “The Connected Minute,” anchored by Jennifer Brown.  The company says CBS Connect affiliates will also receive a number of other short-form features on entertainment, health, and lifestyle.  CBS News Radio general manager Craig Swagler says, “The launch of CBS Connect demonstrates our commitment to providing our broadcast partners with the tools, services, and content they need to win in our hyper-competitive media environment.”…..Cumulus Media’s Nashville urban AC WQQK “92Q” announces it will launch its new morning show on Thursday, October 11. The “The Kenny Smoov Morning Show” features WQQK program director Kenny Smoov (right), Sissy Brown (center), producer and social media director C-Dub (left).  Smoov also serves as afternoon host for Westwood One’s nationally syndicated “The Touch” format…..iHeartMedia’s Bobby Bones show is celebrating its fifth annual Joy Week October 8-11 with in-studio performances by country music stars Kelsea Ballerini, Jon Pardi, Luke Combs, and Old Dominion.  During the week, Bones and his cast encourage listeners to choose joy, spread happiness, and do good things for others.  The program is also selling #PimpinJoy apparel, the proceeds from which will benefit military service members, veterans and their families.  Since the #PimpinJoy movement was launched in 2014, more than $2.5 million dollars has been raised to support many worthy causes.

September 2018 PPM Data – Part Four. September 2018 ratings information has been released for Austin, Raleigh, Indianapolis, Milwaukee, Nashville, Providence, Norfolk, Greensboro, West Palm Beach, Jacksonville, Memphis, and Hartford. Nielsen Audio’s September 2018 survey period covered August 16 – September 12. See all the 6+ numbers from subscribing stations here. Meanwhile, managing editor Mike Kinosian (Kinosian@Talkers.com) provides his “Takeaways” from all 12 of these PPM markets below.

TWELVE TAKEAWAYS

Austin

Spoken-Word Formats – Despite dropping one-tenth (4.4 – 4.3, 6+), Emmis news/talk KLBJ-AM “News Radio 590 AM” inches up from tenth to ninth; August’s 4.4 is its highest 6+-share since March (4.6). 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+). It has been a wild ride lately for Genuine Austin Radio sports talk KTXX “The Horn,” which was +.5 in June; -.9 in July; and now in September, posts a +1.0 to 2.5 (#18 to #14,), its best 6+-stat since December 2016 (2.5, as well). A one-tenth gain in May halted three straight January through April down or flat trends that accounted for a -.3 (1.8 – 1.7 – 1.7 – 1.5, 6+). Flat at #24, iHeartMedia’s similarly-programmed KVET-AM “1300 AM The Zone” nets two-tenths in five straight sweeps without a loss (.3 – .3 – .5 – .5 – .5 – .5, 6+). Its +.2 in June halted four consecutive down or flat trends that accounted for a 50% loss (-.3) of its 6+-share (.6 – .6 – .5 – .3 – .3, 6+). Roaring back from August’s full-share decline (8.1 – 7.1, 6+) with a +.8 in September (7.9, 6+), University of Texas at Austin-owned news/talker KUT advances from second to first. KUT was #1 in July and May – with 8.2 that month its best 6+-showing since November 2016’s 9.0.

Austin Music Formats – In four straight downward trends, iHeartMedia-owned country KVET-FM was an overall -1.7 (6.4 – 6.1 – 6.0 – 5.6 – 4.7, 6+), but “98.1 The Austin, Texas Original” hauls out a +.6 to 5.3 (6+), progressing from eighth to sixth. While April’s +1.1 to 6.4 (6+) enabled KVET-FM to notch its best 6+-stat since last December’s 6.2, August’s 4.7 is its lowest 6+-performance since April 2016’s 4.6. Co-owned and similarly-formatted KASE, which was -.5 (May); +.5 (June); -.5 (July) and +.4 in August (5.6 – 5.1 – 5.6 – 5.1 – 5.5, 6+) adds two-tenths (5.7, fourth to third, 6+). Immediately before May’s one-half share decline, “Austin’s #1 For New Country” was +1.7 in four straight upticks (3.9 – 4.6 – 5.1 – 5.3 – 5.6, 6+). KASE and KVET-FM were tied for fifth in March (5.3, 6+). Meanwhile, after stopping three straight decreases that produced a loss of six-tenths (1.4 – 1.2 – 1.1 – .8, 6+), Genuine Austin Radio-owned KOKE “Austin’s Country Alternative” erases that -.6 with a combined +.6 in August and September (.8 – 1.0 – 1.4, flat at #21, 6+). Notwithstanding a one-half share September increase, Emmis adult hits KBPA “103.5 Bob FM” backslides from first to second; “Bob” was a collective -.8 in July and August (8.1 – 7.5 – 7.3, 6+). On top four months in a row, Austin’s version of “Bob” segued to second in May, owing to a massive -1.4 (8.9 – 7.5, 6+). KBPA would later have one-month stays at #1 in both June and August. Improving by one-half share as well are its triple A cluster-mate KGSR “Austin City Limits Radio” (2.4, #17 to #15, 6+) and Univision Radio Spanish adult hits KLJA “Amor 107.7” (1.9, steady at #19, 6+). Entering the September sweep, KGSR had a (6+) topline of 1.9 – 1.9 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 1.9, while “Amor” applies the brakes to five straight monthlies without an increase that accounted for a -1.0 (2.4 – 2.4 – 2.3 – 1.9 – 1.4 – 1.4, 6+). On the heels of recording its strongest 6+-stat (6.7) since “Holiday” 2017’s 12.4, Entercom adult contemporary KKMJ “Majic 95.5” has August’s one-half share increase (6.2 – 6.7, 6+) wiped away with a -1.2 to 5.5 (third to fourth, 6+). After four successive up or flat trends that netted a +1.0 (3.7 – 4.4 – 4.4 – 4.4 – 4.7, 6+) Emmis’ KLBJ-FM “93.7 The Rock of Austin” forfeits 90% of that increase (3.8, -.9, 6+) and exits the top ten (#8 to #11). Somewhat similarly, Univision Radio regional Mexican KLQB “Que Buena 104.3,” which was a collective +.9 in three upticks in succession (2.2 – 2.2 – 2.8 – 3.1, 6+), surrenders seven-tenths to 2.4 (#13 to #15, 6+). It is tied at #15 with University of Texas at Austin-owned triple A KUTX “98.9 The Austin Music Experience,” which has improved by a cumulative six-tenths in six straight sweeps without a loss (1.8 – 1.8 – 1.9 – 2.4 – 2.4 – 2.4 – 2.4, 6+).

Raleigh

Spoken-Word Formats – After logging a 5.1 (6+) three times in the last five ratings periods (5.1 – 5.1 – 5.0 – 5.4 – 5.1, 6+), iHeartMedia news/talk WTKK “106.1 Stay Connected” improves by four-tenths to 5.5 (6+), advancing from ninth to eighth. A similar gain of four-tenths in July halted three down or flat trends that produced a loss of three tenths (5.3 – 5.1 – 5.1 – 5.0, 6+). An April decline of two-tenths ended three consecutive upticks that yielded a +1.5 (3.8 – 4.7 – 4.9 – 5.3, 6+). A collective +.7 in seven straight sweeps without a loss (1.0 – 1.0 – 1.0 – 1.0 – 1.2 – 1.4 – 1.5 – 1.7, 6+), Curtis Media Group news/talk WPTF continues at #19. In May, “News Radio 680” finished at #18, but prior to that, it occupied the #19 slot for nine straight sweeps. By gaining four-tenths to 2.2 (#16 to #14, 6+), Capitol Broadcasting sports talk WCMC “99.9 The Fan” (#14 to #16) pulls the plug on three losses in a row that resulted in a loss of more than 50% (-2.1) of its 6+-share (3.9 – 2.6 – 2.0 – 1.8, 6+). Raleigh’s “Fan” was -1.3 in January; +.5 in March; -.5 in April; +.5 in May; -1.3 in June; and -.6 in July. Over the last four sweeps, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill news/talk WUNC “91.5 North Carolina Public Radio” has gone from third to first (June, +9); first to third (July, -1.1); third to first (August, +1.2, 6+); and now first to second (September, 8.8 – 8.4, -.4, 6+). In April, WUNC  was -1.0.

Raleigh Music Formats – As a result of a robust +1.1 to 9.6 – its strongest 6+-stat since January’s 10.7 – Radio One urban AC WFXC “Foxy – Today’s R&B and Classic Soul” marches from third to first, succeeding WUNC (see above). A collective -1.2 in three straight downward moves (8.1 – 7.7 – 7.2 – 6.9, 6+), Curtis Media Group’s WQDR “94.7 QDR Today’s Best Country” eliminates all but two-tenths of that deficit with a +1.0 to 7.9 (fifth to third, 6+). Conversely, iHeartMedia-owned WNCB “B-93.9 #1 For New Country” falters by four-tenths to 2.9 (unchanged at #12, 6+), thus snapping at four its consecutive string of increases that netted six-tenths (2.7 – 3.0 – 3.1 – 3.2 – 3.3, 6+). Gaining one-half share each are Radio One gospel WNNL “103.9 The Light” (4.7 – 5.2, tenth to ninth, 6+) and Curtis Media Group regional Mexican WYMY “101.1 La Ley” (1.5 – 2.0, #18 to #16, 6+). This (5.2) is the brightest 6+-showing for “The Light” since May 2017’s 6.0, and the highest 6+-stat for “La Ley” since January (2.0, as well). Significant ups/downs continue for Capitol Broadcasting adult contemporary WRAL “Mix 101.5,” which is a collective +2.6 via three April, May, and June improvements (5.1 – 5.8 – 7.1 – 7.7, 6+); -1.3 in July (7.7 – 6.4, 6+); +.6 in August (6.4 – 7.0, 6+); and now -1.2 in September (7.0 – 5.8, fourth to seventh, 6+). June’s 7.7 is its strongest 6+-showing since 10.4 in “Holiday” 2017. Following six straight up or flat trends that netted a +3.1 (5.9 – 6.9 – 6.9 – 7.2 – 7.5 – 7.6 – 9.0, 6+), Radio One urban contemporary WQOK “K-97.5” is a cumulative -1.2 in August and September (9.0 – 8.7 – 7.8, second to fourth, 6+); “K-97.5” jumped from fifth to first in July. A combined -1.3 in four straight down or flat trends (6.3 – 5.7 – 5.7 – 5.2 – 5.0, 6+), iHeartMedia CHR WDCG “G-105 Raleigh’s #1 Hit Music Station” slips from eighth to tenth, with its lowest 6+-share since December 2017 (5.0, as well).

Indianapolis

Spoken-Word Formats – In a March through September up/down pattern that includes September’s -.7 (5.6 – 5.9 – 5.6 – 6.7 – 6.0 – 6.2 – 5.5, 6+), Emmis news/talk WIBC “93.1 Indy’s News Center” is off one-tenth in that stretch and remains in sixth-place. Prior to May’s -.3, WIBC was a combined +2.5 via four straight positive spikes (3.4 – 4.5 – 5.0 – 5.6 – 5.9, 6+), preceded by an overall -1.8 in four straight downward moves (5.2 – 4.9 – 4.2 – 3.6 – 3.4, 6+). Co-owned sports talk WFNI “The Fan – Indy’s Sports Center” trots out a +.6 to 2.2 (#18 to #15, 6+), which nearly erases its collective -.7 through five consecutive sweeps without an increase (2.3 – 2.3 – 2.3 – 2.2 – 1.6 – 1.6, 6+). After notching a +.1 in back-to-back reports (1.5 – 1.6 – 1.7, June-July-August, 6+) to end three down or flat sweeps in succession for a loss of three-tenths (1.8 – 1.8 – 1.7 – 1.5, 6+), iHeartMedia’s similarly-formatted WNDE “Indy’s Sports Station” is off two-tenths to 1.7 (#16 to #19). A combined +1.8 in four straight increases (2.6 – 3.1 – 3.3 – 3.8 – 4.4, 6+), Metropolitan Indianapolis Public Broadcasting news/talk WFYI slips by one-tenth to 4.3 (6+) but continues at #10. Having increased by one-tenth in back-to-back (July and August) reports (.8 – .9 – 1.0, 6+), Moody Bible Institute religious teaching WGNR “Moody Radio” improves by one-half share to 1.5 (6+) and continues at #20.

Indianapolis Music Formats – Shattering milestones it set just last month, Cumulus Media’s WJJK “Classic Hits 104.5” boasts a +1.1 to 9.7, the highest 6+-share in the station’s PPM-history – and first time it reaches the nine-share threshold (6+). By way of perspective, the previous best for “Classic Hits 104.5” was 8.6, set in … August 2018. If that weren’t enough, WJJK is #1 for the third month in a row and registers its fourth successive uptrend that accounts for a cumulative +2.9 (6.8 – 7.3 – 7.9 – 8.6 – 9.7, 6+). While not as dramatic perhaps as what “Classic Hits 104.5” has recently accomplished, Emmis adult contemporary WYXB posts its fourth consecutive up or flat move for an overall +1.4 (6.1 – 6.6 – 6.6 – 6.8 – 7.5, 6+) to progress from fourth to second. Moreover, this (7.5) represents the finest 6+-showing for “B-105.7” since January’s 7.9. By gaining six-tenths to 2.1 (#19 to #17, 6+), Cumulus Media CHR WYRG “Energy 93.9” pulls the plug on eight straight sweeps without an increase that resulted in a roughly 70% (-3.6) decline of that frequency’s 6+ AQH share (5.1 – 2.9 – 2.9 – 2.0 – 1.8 – 1.5 – 1.5 – 1.5 – 1.5, 6+). It was in mid-November 2017 when WRWM “The Beat” evolved to WYRG “Energy.” Locked on 6.6 (6+) in July and August, Emmis-owned WLHK craters by -1.5 to 5.1 (6+), as “Country 97.1 Hank FM” drops from fifth to eighth. In July, “Hank” regained four-tenths of June’s -.9. Immediately prior to that, WLHK was +1.6 in five consecutive monthlies without a loss (5.5 – 6.2 – 6.2 – 6.7 – 6.8 – 7.1, 6+). May’s 7.1 is its strongest 6+-showing since 7.6 in September 2015. Its format rival – Cumulus Media’s WFMS “95.5 The Country Station” – is up four-tenths (7.0 – 7.4, 6+) and remains at #3. WFMS was #1 in April, May, and June, before becoming a cumulative -1.2 in July and August (8.2 – 7.7 – 7.0, 6+). July’s one-half share loss suspended four straight upticks that netted +2.3 (5.9 – 6.2 – 7.3 – 7.8 – 8.2, 6+). Representative July 2017 – August 2018 WFMS fluctuations include: -.9 (July 2017); +.8 (August); +.5 (September); -.7 (October); +1.1 (November); -.9 (December); -.6 (“Holiday” 2017); -.5 (February 2018); +1.0 (April); +.5 (May); -.5 (July); and -.7 (August). In addition to being down or flat for the third straight month for an overall loss of seven-tenths (2.9 – 2.9 – 2.7 – 2.2, flat at #15, 6+), iHeartMedia urban contemporary WZRL “Real 98.3” has its lowest 6+-share (2.2) since April’s 2.1.

Milwaukee

Spoken-Word Formats – Substituting August’s one-half share loss with a September gain of six-tenths (7.3 – 7.9, 6+), Scripps news/talk WTMJ “Wisconsin’s Radio Station” advances from third to second. In April, the Milwaukee Brewers flagship more than doubled February’s +.9 with a +1.9; two months later (June), WTMJ virtually eliminated May’s -.6 with a +.5. Conversely, iHeartMedia’s similarly-formatted WISN, which also forfeited one-half share in August, sputters by another six-tenths, segueing from fourth to sixth. “News/Talk 1130” is now a combined -2.1 in four straight decreases (7.7 – 6.9 – 6.7 – 6.2 – 5.6, 6+), following a +.9 in May (6.8 – 7.7, 6+). Unchanged at #16, Entercom’s WSSP “Sports Radio 105.7 The Fan” notches a gain of one-tenth for the third month in a row (1.2 – 1.3 – 1.4 – 1.5, 6+). Meanwhile, University of Wisconsin news/talk WUWM is off one-tenth in back-to-back sweeps (2.9 – 2.8 – 2.7, 6+) but ranks #14 for the third straight month. It is within 2.0 – 2.9 range (6+) for the 17th consecutive sweep. Immediately prior to June’s loss of one-tenth, WUWM was up eight-tenths in five sweeps in a row without a loss (2.0 – 2.3 – 2.4 – 2.7 – 2.7 – 2.8, 6+). Regaining the two-tenths it lost in August (.9 – .7 – .9), Wisconsin Public Radio news/talk WHAD continues at #19.

Milwaukee Music Formats – Powered by three consecutive positive spikes that have netted a +2.2 (4.0 – 4.3 – 5.1 – 6.2, 6+), Milwaukee Radio Alliance adult contemporary WLDB zooms from eighth to fourth. This (6.2) constitutes the strongest 6+-showing for “B-93.3” since “Holiday” 2017’s 7.4. Notching improvements of one-half share each are Entercom hot AC WMYX “99.1 The Mix” (5.4 – 5.9, sixth to fifth, 6+) and Saga Communications urban AC WJMR “Jammin’ 98.3” (#13 to #11). “Mix” has its best 6+-stat (5.9) since August 2017’s 6.3, while “Jammin’” posts a gain for the third consecutive month for an overall +1.6 (2.6 – 3.4 – 3.7 – 4.2, 6+). Steady at #9, Entercom CHR WXSS “103.7 Kiss FM” posts its fourth gain in succession for an overall +1.0 (4.1 – 4.5 – 4.9 – 5.0 – 5.1, 6+) and has its best 6+-showing (5.1) since December 2016’s 5.5. At the same time, iHeartMedia’s similarly-formatted WRNW “97.3 Now,” which had three straight decreases for an overall loss of eight-tenths (3.1 – 2.7 – 2.4 – 2.3, 6+), gains four-tenths to 2.7 (#15 to #14, 6+). Six straight down or flat trends by Milwaukee Radio Alliance classic hits-oldies WZTI resulted in a more than 50% loss (-.6) of its 6+-share (1.0 – .8 – .7 – .6 – .6 – .5 – .4, 6+), but “Fonz FM” picks up one-tenth to .5 (6+) and continues at #21. While it sets the pace for the 43rd consecutive ratings period, iHeartMedia classic hits-oldies WRIT “95.7 Big FM – Milwaukee’s Greatest Hits” spirals by -1.6 (10.2 – 8.6, 6+). Prior to July’s loss of seven-tenths, “Big FM” had been +1.7 in four straight February through June increases (8.8 – 9.4 – 9.9 – 10.3 – 10.5, 6+). Not unlike WRIT, Saga Communications’ WKLH “96.5 Milwaukee’s Hometown Rock” is accustomed to some substantial month-to-month fluctuations. In September, for example, it is -.5 (8.4 – 7.9, 6+), but remains at #2. WKLH previously was -.9 (“Holiday” 2017); +.5 (January 2008); -.9 (February); +1.1 (March); -.5 (April); -.5 (May); +.9 (June); and +1.2 (August). In the market’s country skirmish, iHeartMedia-owned WMIL “FM 106.1 – Milwaukee’s Best Country” regains the three-tenths it lost in August (5.3 – 5.6, seventh to sixth, 6+), while Scripps’ WKTI “94.5 KTI Country” falters by that margin and is an overall -.9 in four straight decreases (4.4 – 4.3 – 4.2 – 3.8 – 3.5, #11 to #13, 6+). WMIL rebounded from June’s -1.0 with a +.5 in July. Entering the August sweep, WKTI had been within 4.0 – 4.4 range the previous six months (4.0 – 4.4 – 4.3 – 4.4 – 4.3 – 4.2, February through July, 6+).

Nashville

Spoken-Word Formats – Albeit flat at 3.8 (6+), Cumulus Media news/talk WWTN “Super Talk 99.7” departs the top ten (#10 to #11). Entering the August ratings period, “Super Talk” had a fluctuation of two-tenths in April, May, June, and July (3.5 – 3.7 – 3.5 – 3.3 – 3.5, 6+). With a (6+) high of 1.4 and low of .8, iHeartMedia news/talk WLAC “Talk Radio 1510” (#20 to #19, 6+) has a May 2017 – September 2018 topline of 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 – 1.1 – 1.2 – .8 – .7. Piling on a +1.4 to August’s gain of six-tenths (3.6 – 5.0, 6+), Cumulus Media sports talk WGFX returns to the top ten (#11 to #7). This (5.0) is the highest 6+-share for “104.5 The Zone” since January’s 6.5. Immediately prior to August, WGFX was without an increase for six straight monthlies for a -3.5 (6.5 – 3.9 – 3.7 – 3.4 – 3.1 – 3.0 – 3.0, 6+). An overall -1.9 in four straight decreases – three of which were by one-tenth (2.6 – 2.5 – .9 – .8 – .7, 6+) – Cromwell Group-owned sports talk WPRT “102.5 The Game” picks up one-tenth to .8 (6+) and enters the top twenty (#21 to #19). After logging a one-half share increase in August, Nashville Public Radio news/talk/classical hybrid WPLN-FM “NPR News and Classical Music” relinquishes three-tenths (4.9 – 4.6, seventh to tenth, 6+). Just before August’s +.5, WPLN-FM was a combined -.9 in five straight down or flat trends (5.3 – 5.3 – 5.0 – 4.8 – 4.8 – 4.4, 6+).

Nashville Music Formats – At the same time that iHeartMedia’s WSIX “The Big 98 – Nashville’s #1 for New Country” posts a +.8 (4.3 – 5.1, ninth to eighth, 6+), Cumulus Media’s similarly-programmed WSM-FM “95.5 Nash Icon” spirals by -1.0 (6.6 – 5.6, fifth to sixth, 6+). The market’s other country FM – Cumulus Media’s WKDF “103.3 Nash FM” – picks up one-tenth (3.6 – 3.7, 6+), yet backslides from #11 to #12. “The Big 98” had been without an increase the past four sweeps for a collective -1.6 since April (5.9 – 5.9 – 5.6 – 5.2 – 4.3, 6+); August’s 4.3 is its lowest 6+-stat since “Holiday” 2017’s 4.1. Up four-tenths in August, “Nash Icon” faltered by one-half share in April. Following three straight up or flat trends that netted a +1.1 (3.5 – 4.0 – 4.0 – 4.6, 6+), “Nash FM” was a combined -1.0 in July and August (4.6 – 3.8 – 3.6, 6+). On the heels of August’s +.4, iHeartMedia CHR WRVW adds seven-tenths (4.4 – 4.8 – 5.5, eighth to seventh, 6+) as “107.5 The River” has its best 6+-stat since May’s 5.9. Improving by seven-tenths as well is Educational Media Foundation contemporary Christian WLVU “Positive & Inspiring K-Love,” which is an overall +.8 in four straight up or flat moves (2.3 – 2.3 – 2.4 – 2.4 – 3.1, #15 to #13, 6+). In three upticks in succession (5.9   – 6.8 – 6.9 – 7.4, 6+), Cumulus Media urban AC WQQK is a collective +1.5; “92-Q” progresses from fourth to third. Even though it returns in its entirety the nine-tenths it added in August (8.8 – 9.7 – 8.8, 6+), Midwest Communications adult contemporary WJXA “Mix 92.9 – Your Life, Your Music” sets the pace for the eighth month in a row. “Mix” – which was +1.0 in June and -.5 in May – ranked first in November, December, and “Holiday” 2017; shifted to second in January; but returned to #1 in February. Co-owned adult hits WCJK “96.3 Jack FM Playing What We Want” stumbles by eight-tenths (7.8 – 7.0, 6+), slipping from second to fourth. An overall +1.5 via four consecutive increases (6.3 – 6.4 – 6.7 – 6.8 – 7.8, 6+), iHeartMedia-owned WNRQ surrenders two-tenths to 7.6 (6+), but carries in the runner-up slot. August’s 7.8 is the best 6+-stat for “105.9 The Rock – Nashville’s Classic Rock” since January (7.8, as well). After eroding by seven-tenths in August, urban contemporary cluster-mate WUBT “101.1 The Beat” sputters by another six-tenths (6.6 – 6.0, 6+) but stays at #5. Entering the August sweep, “The Beat” was trending 7.5 – 7.1 – 7.2 – 7.5 – 7.3 (6+).

Providence

Spoken-Word Formats – Adding four-tenths to August’s +.3 (3.7 – 4.0 – 4.4, 6+), Cumulus Media news/talk WPRO-AM “News Talk 630” advances from eighth to seventh. Its August increase halted three straight sweeps without an increase for a -1.0 (4.7 – 3.9 – 3.9 – 3.7, 6+). A decline of eight-tenths in May wiped out the eight-tenths it collected via three consecutive upticks (3.9 – 4.2 – 4.6 – 4.7, 6+). Somewhat similarly, iHeartMedia news/talk WHJJ “Providence’s News, Traffic, and Weather” is a combined +.4 in August and September (1.1 – 1.3 – 1.5, #14 to #12, 6+), directly following an overall loss of nine-tenths through five straight decreases (2.0 – 1.8 – 1.7 – 1.5 – 1.3 – 1.1, 6+). While its net loss between May and September is just one-tenth, Cumulus Media-owned WPRV “AM 790 Talk & Business” (#20 to #21) is without an increase for the fourth sweep in a row (.6 – .6 -.6 – .5 – .5, 6+). Following an approximately six-and-one-half year absence from the Providence report, iHeartMedia Boston’s WBZ-AM “News Radio 1030” returned in print in May. Its five May through September 6+ Providence stats are: 1.4 – .8 – .8 – 1.0 – 1.0 (#18 to #19, 6+).While level at 4.1 (6+), WVEI slips from seventh to eighth. The Entercom sports talk outlet was up seven-tenths in August, after a drop of six-tenths in July. In advance of July’s decrease, WVEI was a collective +1.2 in three upticks in a row (2.8 – 3.4 – 3.9 – 4.0, 6+). The Wheeler School’s news/talk WELH, which was off one-half share in six straight sweeps without an increase (2.3 – 2.3 – 2.2 – 2.2 – 2.1 – 2.0 – 1.8, 6+), adds four-tenths to 2.2 (6+) and enters the top ten (#11 to #9). At the same time, WGBH Educational Foundation news/talk WGBH returns the four-tenths it earned in August (1.8 – 2.2 – 1.8, 6+) and exits the top ten (#10 to #11). Immediately prior to the May sweep, these two outlets finished back-to-back four straight times and were tied in May at #10.

Providence Music Formats – Bouncing back from August’s -1.2 with a +.8 (9.5 – 8.3 – 9.1, 6+), iHeartMedia’s WHJY “94 HJY Providence’s Home of Rock & Roll” climbs from third to second. August’s 8.3 is its lowest 6+-stat since July 2017 (8.3, as well). The four most recent fluctuations for hot AC cluster-mate WSNE “Coast 93.3” are: -1.2 (June); +1.1 (July); -.8 (August); and now +.6 in September (5.4 – 4.2 – 5.3 – 4.5 – 5.1, flat at #6, 6+). June’s decrease directly followed three upticks in a row that netted seven-tenths (4.7 – 5.0 – 5.2 – 5.4, 6+). Cumulus Media adult contemporary WWLI follows August’s +.1 with a September +.2 and repeats at #1 (9.9 – 10.0 – 10.2, 6+). On top in May and June, with June’s 10.3 its highest 6+-stat since 12.3 in “Holiday” 2017, “Lite Rock 105” has been in double-digits (6+) in 11 of the last 17 sweeps. Entering the August sweep, iHeartMedia classic hits-oldies WWBB was +.3.1 in five upticks in a row (5.0 – 5.9 – 6.5 – 6.9 – 7.2 – 8.1, 6+), but “B-101” is a combined -1.7 in August and September (8.1 – 7.3 – 6.4, flat at #5, 6+). In July, it reached the eight-share level (8.1) for the first time since August 2015 (8.0). On a seesaw, Cumulus Media CHR WPRO-FM “92 PRO FM – Today’s Hit Music” is -.7 (July); +1.0 (August); and now -.7 in September (9.1 – 8.4, second to third, 6+). August 2018’s 9.1 is its strongest 6+-showing in more than a year (9.1, as well, in June 2017).

Norfolk – A cumulative -1.8 in four straight decreases (7.1 – 6.7 – 6.0 – 5.9 – 5.3, 6+), Saga Communications’ classic rock WAFX “106.9 The Fox” roars back with a +1.1 to 6.4 (fifth to third, 6+). When “The Fox” dropped four-tenths in May, it halted three upticks in a row that netted a +2.4 (4.7 – 5.9 – 6.3 – 6.4 – 7.1, 6+). In April-May-June, Entercom hot AC WPTE was +1.0 (2.9 – 2.6 – 3.9, 6+). It returned 90% of that increase (-.9) in July and August (3.9 – 3.4 – 3.0, 6+) and now regains one-half share in September (3.5, 6+); “94.9 The Point” carries on at #7. A collective +3.4 in five straight increases (12.1 – 12.3 – 13.2 – 14.3 – 14.6 – 15.5, 6+), urban AC sibling WVKL relinquishes just over half of that bounty (13.7, -1.8, 6+). Even so, “Smooth R&B from Yesterday & Today” is #1 for the 22ndtime in a row and posts a 6+-share of 11.0 or higher for the 30th time in the last 31 sweeps. Its 15.5 in August sets the record for highest 6+-performance by any Norfolk station in the PPM-era, breaking the old mark of 14.6 (6+), which WVKL tied in July. Meanwhile, CHR sibling WNVZ “Z-104,” which was +1.2 in four straight sweeps without a loss (4.1 – 4.1 – 4.2 – 4.6 – 5.3, 6+), surrenders half that increase (4.7, -.6, fifth to sixth, 6+). August’s 5.3 is its highest 6+-share in more than four years (5.4, May 2014). An overall +1.3 in June and July (5.0 – 5.5 – 6.3, 6+), Entercom adult contemporary WWDE “101.3 2WD” is off an overall four-tenths in August and September (6.3 – 6.2 – 5.9, 6+), shifting from third to fourth. Just prior to May’s -1.1, WWDE posted three upticks in succession that generated a +1.8 (4.3 – 5.7 – 5.9 – 6.1, 6+). After losing 86% of its 6+-share (-4.3) through seven successive sweeps without an increase, (5.0 – 1.6 – 1.3 – 1.1 – 1.1 – 1.1 – .9 – .7, 6+), iHeartMedia rhythmic hot AC WMOV “Movin’ 107.7” picks up three-tenths in August and September (.7 – 1.0 – 1.3, 6+) to crack the top ten (#11 to #10). As the result of four straight declines, Saga Communications’ WNOR “99 Rocks” is -2.5 (8.3 – 7.3 – 6.1 – 6.0 – 5.8, fourth to fifth, 6+).

Greensboro

Spoken-Word Formats – A loss of eight-tenths (4.3 – 3.5, 6+) drops iHeartMedia news/talk WPTI “94.5 Your News, Talk, & Sports Station” out of the top ten (#10 to #11). WPTI posted a gain of two-tenths in back-to-back sweeps (3.8 – 4.0 – 4.2, April – May – June, 6+), before dropping one-tenth in July. In six straight down or flat survey periods, Curtis Media Group sports talk WSJS has lost 75% (-.6) of its 6+ AQH share (.8 – .6 – .5 – .4 – .2 – .2 -.2, 6+) and stays at #16. Immediately before that, owing to three straight increases, “Triad Sports” quadrupled its 6+-share (.2 – .3 – .6 – .8, 6+). For the fourth sweep in succession, Wake Forest University news/talk WFDD “88.5 Public Radio for the Piedmont” finishes at #13 (2.1 – 2.3, +.2, 6+). Its +.1 in August concluded at four a consecutive string of down or flat monthlies for an overall -.5 (2.5 – 2.3 – 2.2 – 2.0 – 2.0, 6+). The May through September topline for University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill news/talk WUNC (#14 to #15) is 1.1 – 1.0 – .9 – 1.0 – 1.0 (6+). Prior to April, WUNC registered a .9 (6+) in three of the previous four sweeps (.9 – .9 – 1.1 – .9, 6+).

Greensboro Music Formats – Posting whopping gains of +1.1 each are iHeartMedia adult contemporary WMAG “99.5 – The Triad’s Best Variety” (6.8 – 7.9, fifth to third, 6+) and Dick Broadcasting CHR WKZL 107.5 KZL – The #1 Hit Music Station” (eighth to sixth). WMAG had been a collective -1.0 in July and August (7.8 – 7.2 – 6.8, 6+). After a lengthy hiatus, WKZL recently returned in print. Its February through September topline is 4.0 – 5.4 – 5.0 – 4.3 – 5.4 – 5.1 – 4.6 – 5.7 (6+) for an overall +1.7 in that timeframe. Adding one-half share to August’s +.2 (2.7 – 2.9 – 3.4, 6+), iHeartMedia CHR WMKS “100.3 Kiss FM All the Hits” finishes at #12 for the fourth sweep in a row. Prior to August, “Kiss” was a collective -1.4 in three downward moves in a row (4.1 – 3.7 – 3.2 – 2.7, 6+). Notwithstanding that it is down two full-shares as the result of five successive decreases (12.2 – 12.0 – 11.2 – 10.9 – 10.5 – 10.2, 6+), Entercom urban AC WQMG “97.1 QMG The Best R&B and Old School” leads the pack for the ninth month in a row and is in double-digits (6+) for the 23rd straight time. WQMG was -1.1 in March, but then +1.2 in April. In the runner-up slot for the ninth consecutive time, adult hits cluster-mate WSMW “98.7 Simon Says We Play Everything” is off a combined four-tenths in August and September (10.0 – 9.7 – 9.6, 6+). A July gain of nine-tenths halted five consecutive decreases that accounted for an overall -2.5 (11.6 – 11.4 – 10.4 – 10.3 – 9.4 – 9.1, 6+). Down three-tenths in July and then up four-tenths in August, iHeartMedia-owned WTQR “Q-104.1 – #1 for New Country” regresses by eight-tenths in September (7.3 – 6.5, third to fifth, 6+). July’s decrease ended at three its consecutive streak of gains that netted a +2.3 (4.9 – 5.0 – 6.2 – 7.2, 6+); June’s 7.2 is the highest 6+-share for “Q-104.1” since October 2017’s 7.3. Locked on 5.6 (6+) in July (when it was up nine-tenths) and August, Entercom’s similarly-formatted WPAW drops two-tenths to 5.4 (seventh to eighth, 6+); “93.1 The Wolf” plummeted by -1.5 in June (6.2 – 4.7, 6+). Immediately prior to that loss, WPAW was +1.1 in May to 6.2, its highest 6+-share since October 2017’s 7.1.

West Palm Beach

Spoken-Word Formats – Steady at #10, Alpha Media’s WFTL “News Talk 850” is an overall +.7 in four successive upticks (1.7 – 1.9 – 2.1 – 2.3 – 2.4, , 6+). After four straight up or flat trends that netted nine-tenths (2.0 – 2.3 – 2.3 – 2.7 – 2.9, 6+), iHeartMedia news/talk WJNO “1290 The Palm Beaches’ News & Talk” is now a combined -1.0 in August and September (2.9 – 2.3 – 1.9, -.6, 6+) and departs the top ten (#10 to #13). Before posting a +.3 in April, WJNO was a collective -1.3 via four successive decreases (3.3 – 2.9 – 2.6 – 2.1 – 2.0, 6+). Following a one-half share gain in August, co-owned news/talk WZZR returns 40% of that increase (2.0 – 1.8, -.2, #13 to #14, 6+). Prior to August, “Real Radio 94.3 – Real Talk for the Palm Beaches” had been down or flat the previous three ratings periods for a -.6 (2.1 – 1.6 – 1.6 – 1.5, 6+). Returning to print in West Palm Beach, Miami news/talk sibling WIOD is trending 1.1 – .9 – 1.0 – 1.2 (#19 to #18, 6+). Progressing from ninth to eighth, Dade County School Board news/talk WLRN has been within 2.9 – 3.5 range (6+) each month this calendar year: 3.2 – 3.2 – 3.2 – 3.5 – 3.5 – 3.1 – 2.9 – 3.1 – 3.4 (6+).

West Palm Beach Music Formats – A collective +1.0 in four straight up or flat trends (9.0 – 9.3 – 9.3 – 9.4 – 10.0, 6+), Alpha Media hot AC WRMF finishes first for the ninth consecutive month and is in double-digits for the first time since February. When “97.9 Variety from the 90s and Now” logged a +.3 in June, it suspended three straight decreases that produced an overall -1.2 (10.2 – 9.9 – 9.2 – 9.0, 6+). WRMF spent 12 consecutive ratings periods on top before dropping to the runner-up slot in “Holiday” 2017. On the heels of August’s +1.2 to 5.1 – its best 6+-stat since June 2017 – co-owned WIRK surrenders 75% of that increase (4.2, -.9, fourth to sixth, 6+). Immediately prior to August, “Country 103.1” notched five successive sweeps without an increase that accounted for a -1.0 (4.9 – 4.5 – 4.1 – 4.1 – 3.9 – 3.9, 6+). Off for the third time in a row for an overall -1.2 (6.5 – 6.3 – 6.1 – 5.3, 6+), iHeartMedia-owned adult contemporary WOLL segues from second to third with its lowest 6+-share (5.3) since 4.9 in “Holiday” 2017. “Today’s Kool 105.5” was up six-tenths in June, after being locked on 5.9 (6+) in April and May. One-tenth behind WOLL is its format rival, Alpha Media’s WEAT “Sunny 107.9,” which is up four-tenths in back-to-back sweeps (4.4 – 4.8 – 5.2, steady at #4, 6+), after July’s half-share loss. This is the best 6+-showing for “Sunny” since April (5.2, as well). Big ups/downs continue for iHeartMedia CHR WLDI “Wild 95.5,” which was -1.6 in May and June (4.3 – 3.1 – 2.7, 6+); a collective +1.3 in July and August (2.7 – 3.8 – 4.0, 6+); and now -.5 in September (4.0 – 3.5, flat at #7, 6+). Faltering by one-half share as well are WAY Media contemporary Christian WAYF “WAY-FM Uplifting-Upbeat-Real” (3.3 – 2.8, eighth to ninth, 6+) and iHeartMedia’s WBGG “Big 105.9 – South Florida’s Classic Rock” (1.6 – 1.1, #16 to #19, 6+).

Jacksonville

Spoken-Word Formats – In the last three sweeps, Cox Media Group news/talk WOKV “104.5 – Jacksonville’s News, Weather, and Traffic” has been -.7 (July); +.5 (August); and -.6 in September (9.2 – 8.6, second to third, 6+). Immediately in advance of July’s decline, WOKV was +2.1 in three upticks in a row (7.3 – 8.2 – 9.3 – 9.4, 6+). Off nine-tenths in March, WOKV was #1 in May. Flat at .5 – its best 6+-stat since January’s .7 – iHeartMedia sports talk WFXJ “Sports Radio 930” remains at #19. A very steady January – August topline for public news/talk WJCT (3.0 – 3.5 – 3.4 – 3.3 – 3.2 – 3.3 – 3.2 – 3.4) gets a bit of a September jolt with a -.6 to 2.8 (flat at #12, 6+).

Jacksonville Music Formats – It has been a real rollercoaster ride the past four sweeps for Cox Media Group classic hits-oldies WJGL “96.9 The Eagle,” which was -.5 (June); +.8 (July); -.7 (August); and now a whopping +1.3 in September (8.0 – 9.3, third to second, 6+). Immediately in advance of June’s one-half share loss, “The Eagle” was a combined +1.8 in five straight up or flat trends (6.6 – 7.1 – 7.7 – 8.2 – 8.2 – 8.4, 6+). In a continuation of that theme, iHeartMedia urban contemporary WJBT “93.3 The Beat,” was a cumulative -1.0 in March and April (5.2 – 4.6 – 4.2, 6+); +.8 (May); -.5 (June); +1.0 (July); -.4 (August); and now +.8 in September (5.1 – 5.9, flat at #6, 6+). A collective -1.2 in three straight down or flat trends (4.6 – 4.6 – 4.2 – 3.4, 6+), Cox Media Group adult contemporary WEZI answers with a collective +1.3 in August and September (3.4 – 4.2 – 4.7, 6+) as “Easy 102.9” jumps from tenth to seventh. While Renda Broadcasting’s similarly-formatted WEJZ is #1 for the fourth month in a row, “96.1 Jacksonville’s Official Work Station” regresses by eight-tenths (10.6 – 9.8, 6+) and has its consecutive string of reaching double-digits (6+) end at three (10.4 – 10.3 – 10.6, 6+). August’s 10.6 is the best 6+-showing for WEJZ since “Holiday” 2017’s 11.9. A loss of two-tenths in May knocked WEJZ (which was +1.4 in June) from first after just a one-month stay on top; it was #1 in “Holiday” 2017 and February 2018. Having recorded a March through July topline of 3.5 – 3.1 – 3.8 – 3.6 – 3.9 (6+), iHeartMedia CHR WKSL “97.9 Kiss-FM” gained one-half share in August to 4.4 (6+), only to lose nine-tenths in September (3.5, 6+) and exit the top ten (#8 to #11). August’s 4.4 is its strongest 6+-share since January’s 4.7. In five straight negative moves (5.9 – 5.8 – 5.7 – 4.8 – 4.6 – 4.4, 6+), Renda Broadcasting’s WGNE is an overall -1.5 and slips from seventh to ninth; “Gator Country 99.9” was +1.1 in April. Unchanged at #4, iHeartMedia-owned WQIK “99.1 Jacksonville’s Country” is off a combined four-tenths in three straight down or flat moves (7.1 – 7.1 – 6.8 – 6.8, 6+). A collective -2.3 in April and May (9.0 – 8.2 – 6.7, 6+), WQIK bounced back with a one-half share increase to 7.2 (June, 6+). Its +1.1 in March suspended four straight decreases that accounted for an overall -5.7 (13.6 – 12.3 – 11.0 – 10.6 – 8.2 – 7.9, 6+). October 2017’s 13.6 is the best-ever (6+) PPM-performance for WQIK, which was #1 this past January and March.

Memphis

Spoken-Word Formats – An overall +.6 in July and August (2.9 – 3.1 – 3.5, 6+), iHeartMedia news/talk WREC “600 AM – Memphis’ News, Traffic, & Weather” drops one-tenth in September to 3.4 (6+) but continues at #10. July’s increase stalled five straight sweeps without an increase for an overall loss of six-tenths (3.5 – 3.3 – 3.2 – 3.2 – 3.0 – 2.9, 6+). Fully erasing July’s -.6 (2.9 – 2.3, 6+) with a combined +.6 in August and September (2.3 – 2.4 – 2.9, 6+), Entercom sports talk WMFS “ESPN Sports Radio” carries on at #12. 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+). Co-owned sports talk WMC-AM “Sports 790 AM” is up or flat for the fifth time in succession for a net gain of three-tenths (.1 – .1 – .1 – .3 – .3 – .4 – .4, flat at #18, 6+).

Memphis Music Formats – Answering August’s loss of eight-tenths with a September gain of seven-tenths (3.9 – 4.6, 6+) iHeartMedia-owned WEGR continues in ninth-place. Prior to August, “Rock 102.7 – Memphis’ Classic Rock” was a collective +1.7 via four straight gains (3.0 – 3.8 – 4.0 – 4.5 – 4.7, 6+). After being down or flat the past six monthlies for a collective -2.7 (7.3 – 7.2 – 7.1 – 6.1 – 4.8 – 4.8 – 4.6, 6+), co-owned gospel WHAL “95.7 Halleluiah – Memphis’ Inspiration Station” picks up one-tenth to 4.7 (6+) and is unchanged at #8. August’s 4.6 is its lowest 6+-stat since September 2017 (4.6, as well). Improving by six-tenths and jumping from fourth to second is Entercom adult contemporary WRVR “104.5 The River” (8.0 – 8.6, 6+), which was +.6 in July as well. This (8.6) is the best 6+-stat for WRVR since “Holiday” 2017’s 12.9. Cumulus Media’s similarly-formatted WKIM “98.9 The Bridge” is up a total of three-tenths in three straight up or flat reports (1.4 – 1.6 – 1.7 – 1.7, steady at #14, 6+). Also notching a +.6 in September, in addition to “The River,” is Entercom country WLFP “94.1 The Wolf” (1.8 – 2.4, #14 to #13, 6+), which has its best 6+-performance since January (2.4, as well). Format rival – Cumulus Media-owned WGKX “Kix 106 Today’s Best Country” – is off two-tenths to 5.0 (flat at #7, 6+), thus halting three straight increases that netted +1.8 (3.4 – 3.9 – 4.5 – 5.2, 6+). June’s gain of one-half share interrupted four decreases in a row that accounted for a cumulative -1.0 (4.4 – 4.1 – 3.9 – 3.7 – 3.4, 6+). At #1 for the fifth month in a row, iHeartMedia urban AC KJMS “V-101” is nonetheless a combined -.8 in August and September (11.1 – 10.4 – 10.3, 6+). Entering the August sweep, KJMS was +1.7 in three straight up or flat trends (9.4 – 10.1 – 11.1 – 11.1, 6+). An overall -2.6 in five downward moves in succession (9.8 – 9.4 – 8.5 – 8.2 – 8.1 – 7.2, 6+), urban contemporary cluster-mate WHRK “K-97.1 – Memphis’ Only Hip-Hop and R&B” shifts from third to fourth with its lowest 6+-stat (7.2) since March 2017’s 6.5. By gaining six-tenths in April (following a +1.0 in March), “K-97.1” succeeded “V-101” at #1. Without an increase for the fourth successive sweep for a combined -1.4 (10.0 – 9.3 – 8.8 – 8.8 – 8.6, 6+), Cumulus Media urban-rhythmic oldies WRBO “Soul Classics and Today’s R&B” stays at #2, where it is tied with AC sibling WRVR. Immediately in advance of the June sweep, WRBO was +2.3 in three straight positive trends (7.7 – 8.0 – 9.2 – 10.0, 6+); May’s 10.0 is its finest 6+-performance since October 2017’s 10.2. Albeit down for the third straight month for  a combined -1.7 (6.8 – 6.0 – 5.3 – 5.1, 6+), Entercom hot AC WMC-FM remains at #6. Entering the July sweep, “FM 100 Today’s Best Mix” was an overall +2.3 in four straight increases (4.5 – 4.9 – 5.2 – 5.5 – 6.8, 6+); June 2018’s 6.8 is its strongest 6+-showing since May 2017’s 7.0.

Hartford

Spoken-Word Formats – This is the third time in a row that Entercom news/talk WTIC-AM “News Talk 1080” has posted a 6.2 (seventh to sixth, 6+). July’s one-half share gain halted three straight down or flat trends in succession for a -.2 (5.9 – 5.8 – 5.8 – 5.7, 6+). Prior to July and August, WTIC-AM last reached the six-share level (6+) in June 2017 (6.7). This calendar year’s (6+) topline trending for Red Wolf Broadcasting news/talk WDRC-AM “AM 1360 The Talk of Connecticut” (#14 to #15) is: 1.0 – 1.0 – 1.2 – 1.2 – 1.2 – 1.0 – 1.2 – 1.1 – 1.0. After seven straight down or flat trends for a -2.4 (5.9 – 5.9 – 5.5 – 4.2 – 3.6 – 3.5 – 3.5 – 3.5, 6+), Connecticut Public Broadcasting Network news/talk WNPR “Connecticut’s Public Media Source for News & Ideas” notches a +.5 to 4.0 (flat at #9, 6+). Prior to May, the last time WNPR was below a five-share (6+) was in August 2017 (4.7). Level at #13, University of Massachusetts-owned WFCR “New England Public Radio” follows August’s gain of three-tenths with a loss of one-tenth (1.6 – 1.5, 6+). Its August improvement curtailed five successive down or flat trends that led to a -1.2 (2.5 – 1.8 – 1.4 – 1.4 – 1.4 – 1.3, 6+).

Hartford Music Formats – Wiping away August’s -.6 with September’s increase of seven-tenths (7.3 – 8.0, 6+), iHeartMedia mainstream CHR WKSS “Kiss 95.7 – All The Hits” repeats at #2. Entering the August sweep, “Kiss” posted three straight upticks that netted +1.0 (6.9 – 7.3 – 7.6 – 7.9, 6+). Similarly, co-owned WWYZ “Country 92.5” virtually erases August’s loss of seven-tenths with an improvement of six-tenths (6.4 – 7.0, 6+), as it jumps from sixth to third. Off an overall six-tenths in July and August (4.0 – 3.5 – 3.4, 6+), Red Wolf Broadcasting alternative WMRQ “Radio 104.1” logs a one-half share gain to 3.9 (6+) and continues at #10. Setting the pace for the 26th consecutive ratings period, Entercom adult contemporary WRCH “Lite 100.5” slips three-tenths (11.4 – 11.1, 6+) but is in double-digits (6+) for the 23rd time in the last 25 sweeps. Following July’s -2.2, “Lite” rebounded with a +1.2 in August, which pulled the plug on four straight March through July downward moves that accounted for a -4.1 (14.3 – 13.2 – 13.1 – 12.4 – 10.2, 6+). WRCH was  +1.1 in March, but then -1.1 in April. A decrease of six-tenths (6.5 – 5.9, fifth to seventh, 6+) by iHeartMedia classic hits-oldies WHCN takes “105.9 The River” to its lowest 6+-stat since October 2017’s 5.6. A cumulative +1.9 in three straight up or flat trends (3.8 – 4.3 – 4.3 – 5.7, 6+), Red Wolf Broadcasting’s WDRC-FM “102.9 The Whale – Hartford’s Classic Rock” loses three-tenths to 5.4 (6+) but is steady at #8; August’s 5.7 is its best 6+-stat since last October’s 6.0. Entercom rhythmic CHR WZMX “Hot 93.7” is -1.6 in four straight decreases (8.3 – 8.2 – 7.8 – 7.0 – 6.7, fourth to fifth, 6+).

Thursday, October 4, 2018

| October 4, 2018

iHeartMedia Enters into $10 Million Ad Deal with High Times. Via the Form 1-U filing with the SEC by Hightimes Holdings Corp, we learn that iHeartMedia has entered into a deal with the marijuana-centric media firm to provide advertising – initially $5 million worth of ad inventory with the option for another $5 million – in exchange for an 8% convertible note due September 26, 2020.  Hightimes Holdings plans to use the inventory to publicize – via radio, digital and outdoor – its pending maximum $50 million Regulation A+ initial public offering.  The 1-U filing explains that “upon completion of the Hightimes Pubic Offering, provided that a minimum of $15,000,000 of gross proceeds are raised and Hightimes Class A voting common stock trades on an ‘Approved Securities Market’ (as defined in the convertible note), all iHeart Ad Inventory purchased and the entire outstanding amount of the BMH [Broader Media Holdings] Note shall automatically convert into shares of Hightimes Class A common stock at a conversion price equal to the volume weighted average closing prices, as traded on such Approved Securities Market for the 10 trading days immediately following completion of the Hightimes Public Offering.”

FOX Sports Radio Adds New Talent to Weekend Programming. The new fall weekend lineup for FOX Sports Radio is announced by Premiere Networks.  Focusing on college and NFL football, the network adds five-year NFL veteran Bucky Brooks, who teams up with FSR personality Mark Willard to host Saturdays from 4:00 pm to 8:00 pm ET, and sports radio and TV pro Kelvin Washington partners with FSR’s Steve Hartman on Saturdays from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm ET.  Washington will also join FSR weekend host and 13-year NFL veteran Ephraim Salaam on Sundays to host “Red Zone Radio” from 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm ET.  Premiere Networks VP of sports programming Scott Shapiro states, “Coupled with the recent additions of RJ Bell, Chris Broussard, and Rob Parker to our weekday lineup, FOX Sports Radio has the best array of talent to provide thoughtful insight and entertaining commentary for all sports fans both on weekdays and weekends.  When sports news breaks or action on the field develops, we are live 24/7 to provide instantaneous reaction with perspective and opinions from the best minds in the game.”

Kicking off the Upfront Season. Executives and talent representing Skyview Networks, CBS Audio and ABC Radio were present on Tuesday night at The Onyx Room in New York kicking off the upfront season at an event positioned as “Experience Beyond,” drawing the largest spenders in network radio. The event focused on new integrations and experiential opportunities for 2019 across Skyview Networks’ sales portfolio.  The night was capped with an exclusive, live acoustic performance from country music star, Cassadee Pope.  Pictured above (from l-r) are: Steve Jones, vice president/GM ABC Radio; David Muir, anchor, “World News Tonight”; Sara Haines, co-host, “GMA Day”; Dr. Jennifer Ashton, ABC News chief health and medical correspondent; Brad Mielke, host of ABC’s “Start Here” podcast; and Aaron Katersky, ABC News correspondent.

Michael Harrison Guests on Journalist Joe Strupp’s New Podcast Series.  Noted journalist Joe Strupp, whose long list of credits includes serving as senior editor/investigative reporter for Media Matters for America and senior editor for Editor & Publisher has launched a new media-focused podcast series titled “Joe’s Media Corner” (that features extensive interviews with leading figures in the news and communications industries).  TALKERS publisher Michael Harrison is his guest on episode 3.  In this deep-dive interview, Harrison talks extensively about the challenges facing spoken-word radio in the 21st century, the role of news/talk within the talk radio spectrum, why conservative programming has worked more successfully than progressive on commercial news/talk radio, and how the radio industry has arrived in its present financial predicament.  He also shares a historical overview about his role as a pioneer in FM progressive rock radio and the rise of album oriented rock (AOR) radio which later evolved into present-day classic rock radio.  Don’t miss this fascinating, unvarnished conversation.  To listen to this podcast in its entirety, please click here.

Bruce Law Named VP/GM for Cumulus Media’s Grand Rapids Cluster. Michigan native Bruce Law returns home to join Cumulus Media as vice president and general manager of the company’s Grand Rapids stations, including news/talk WJRW and sports talk WBBL-FM. Law previously served as president of Saga Communications’ Asheville, North Carolina cluster.  Cumulus Media EVP of operations Bob Walker states, “We are thrilled to welcome Bruce back home to Grand Rapids.  His passion for these brands and for Western Michigan is obvious and we are glad to have him on the team.”

TALKERS News Notes. As part of a new deal with the NHL’s New Jersey Devils and New York Islanders, Entercom announces that all regular-season and postseason games for both teams will stream live from Radio.com, the exclusive digital home for all Entercom content.  The broadcasts will be available free via Radio.com’s app and website as well as the NHL, New Jersey Devils and New York Islanders mobile apps and website.  In addition, WFAN, New York will promote all live, digital streams and air select head-to-head matchups between the two teams. Entercom SVP Jeff Sottolano says, “We’re excited to expand our partnership with the New Jersey Devils and add the New York Islanders.  As the fastest growing digital audio app in the United States and unrivaled leader in local sports coverage, Radio.com aims to become a daily habit for the millions of users we reach each month, including tri-state hockey fans.”…..iHeartMedia-owned Total Traffic and Weather Network inks a deal to provide public radio news/talk WBEZ, Chicago with real-time traffic data and services, including TrafficNet, a 24-7 dashboard covering live breaking traffic information…..For its 21st consecutive season, ESPN Radio is broadcasting every game of the MLB Postseason.  A rotating team of Marc Kestecher, Kevin Winter, John Brickley, and Jim Basquil will host 30-minute pre-game shows during the Division Series and a one-hour show during the Championship Series and World Series broadcasts.

Michael Harrison Podcast Poses Provocative Question:  Does the Human Brain Act as a Kind of Radio/Television Antenna?  Silicon Valley high-tech industry financial expert Mark Gober is this week’s guest on the award-winning PodcastOne series “The Michael Harrison Interview.”  Gober is the author of a provocative new book titled “An End to Upside Down Thinking: Dispelling the Myth That the Brain Produces Consciousness, and the Implications for Everyday Life” (Waterside Press, 2018).  In it, he presents the latest scientific research and evidence suggesting that, contrary to popular belief and mainstream science dogma, human consciousness doesn’t originate in the brain but, rather, in a higher universal dimension – perhaps even beyond time and space as we perceive them.  The implications of such a possibility are profound.  Harrison states, “I’ve always been fascinated by the obvious connections between human biology and our technological extensions of it.  In other words, our inventions are enhanced mechanical versions of what nature has already provided us.  Is it not possible that just as the content of radio and TV programs does not originate in the physical appliances that pluck it out of the air for us, our consciousness – thoughts, words and creativity – comes from some other invisible source outside the brain?  Maybe the brain is a biological radio antenna processing signals from elsewhere?  Mark Gober’s book tackles this issue in a direct, credible and understandable way.  He’s a great guest!”  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.

Kavanaugh Investigation, NYTimes‘ Trump Wealth Story, U.S.-China Tensions, Trump-Russia Investigation, Midterm Elections, South Carolina Cop Attack, NFL Action, and MLB Playoffs Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (10/3). The accusations of sexual assault against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh and the FBI’s investigation into Christine Blasey Ford’s claim; the New York Times story alleging Donald Trump’s family engaged in tax schemes to achieve its wealth; U.S.-China tensions over tariffs and China’s military programs in the South China Sea; the investigation into possible connections between Trump campaign operatives and Russian agents; November’s midterm elections and speculation about which party will have control of congress; the deadly attack on police attempting to execute a search warrant in South Carolina; NFL action; and the Major League Baseball playoffs were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. Classic hits it is for Entercom’s former hot AC WIAD, Washington “94.7 Fresh FM.”  The new format and brand – “94.7 The Drive” – launched yesterday afternoon with the station promising “expertly curated classic hits, including rock, pop, and R&B hits from the 1980s, as well as mass appeal titles from the 1970s and 1990s.”  Entercom Washington SVP and market manager Phil Zachary says, “Washington D.C. is the only major market without a classic hits radio station.  With Entercom’s track record in the format from New York to L.A., we have the wherewithal to capitalize on this unique opportunity.  It’s no stretch to launch with a high level of confidence when Pat Paxton, Jim Ryan, and Jeff Sottolano are part of the brain trust.”  The station launched with limited commercial inventory and will announce programming updates in the coming months…..On-air pro Amy Reed is appointed morning drive co-host at Entercom’s country WPAW, Greensboro alongside Dale O’Brian on the “Wake Up with the Wolf” program.  She had most recently been with Alpha Media’s CHR WARQ, Columbia, South Carolina as midday host and assistant program director…..Kelly Ford, co-host of the nationally syndicated “Ty, Kelly and Chuck” morning drive program is serving as host committee chair of the Play Like a Girl Honors Gala. The black-tie event will benefit the national non-profit organization, Play Like a Girl, and is being held on Monday, November 26 at the Marriott Hotel in Franklin, Tennessee.  Ford joins fellow host committee chair (and WKRN-TV, Nashville chief meteorologist) Danielle Breezy, and honorary chair, Trisha Yearwood for the gala evening that will celebrate the achievements of leading women and men in sports and the girls they inspire.  The Play Like a Girl Honors Gala will raise funds for programs that inspire leadership through sport and build confidence in girls on and off the field.

September 2018 PPM Data – Part Three. September 2018 ratings information has been released for Portland, Charlotte, San Antonio, Pittsburgh, Sacramento, Salt Lake City, Las Vegas, Cincinnati, Orlando, Cleveland, Kansas City, and Columbus. Nielsen Audio’s September 2018 survey period covered August 16 – September 12. See all the 6+ numbers from subscribing stations here.  Meanwhile, managing editor Mike Kinosian (Kinosian@Talkers.com) provides his “Takeaways” from these 12 PPM markets below.

TWELVE TAKEAWAYS

Portland

Spoken Word Formats – With a May – September topline of 5.3 – 4.9 – 5.0 – 5.3 – 5.2 (6+), Alpha Media news/talk KXL “101 FM News – Stay Connected” carries on in fifth-place for the fourth straight month. KXL was up six-tenths in April and then off a combined one-half share in May and June. When “101 FM News – Stay Connected” faltered by four-tenths in March, it ended three consecutive increases that produced a cumulative +1.7. By way of comparison, the January through September trending for iHeartMedia’s KEX “News Radio 1190 – Depend on Us” is 1.7 – 1.7 – 1.8 – 1.6 – 1.6 – 1.7 – 1.6 – 2.0 – 1.9 (#18 – #20, 6+), with August’s 2.0 marking the first time it reached the two-share level (6+) in nearly two years (2.1, November 2015). An April improvement of two-tenths interrupted three straight up or flat trends that netted six-tenths (1.2 – 1.7 – 1.7 – 1.8, 6+). Returning two-tenths of August’s +.3 (1.0 – .8, 6+), Alpha Media news/talk KUFO falls from #24 to #26. “Freedom 970” posted a 1.0 (6+) four times in a row before dropping three-tenths to .7 (6+) in July. After six straight down or flat moves that resulted in a -1.0 (2.4 – 2.0 – 2.0 – 2.0 – 1.5 – 1.5 – 1.4, 6+), Entercom’s KFXX “1080 The Fan” regains 90% of that loss with a collective +.9 in August and September (1.4 – 1.7 – 2.3, #20 to #18, 6+). Flat at #22, Alpha Media-owned KXTG “The Game” erases August’s -.2 with September’s +.3 (1.2 – 1.5, 6+), while iHeartMedia’s KPOJ “Sports Radio 620” recovers from August’s loss of seven-tenths with a +.1 (1.1 – .4 – .5, #29 to #28, 6+). Despite adding one-tenth (8.1 – 8.2, 6+), Oregon Public Broadcasting news/talk KOPB shifts from first – where it has been each month this calendar year – to second. KOPB was +1.1 (January); -1.1 (February); +1.0 (March); -1.0 (April); and -.5 (May).

Portland Music Formats – Succeeding KOPB at #1 (see above) is iHeartMedia adult contemporary KKCW “K-103,” which advances from the runner-up slot. In addition to logging its best 6+-stat (8.8) since “Holiday” 2017’s 16.9, “K-103” is an overall +1.6 in three upticks in a row (7.2 – 7.7 -7.9 – 8.8, 6+). KKCW was #1 in December 2017 (13.0, 6+); “Holiday” 2017 (16.9, 6+); and tied for first (with KOPB) in April 2018 (8.5, 6+). By tacking on one-half share to August’s +.9 (4.4 – 5.3 – 5.8, 6+), Alpha Media triple A KINK “101.9 Uniquely Portland” progresses from fifth to fourth. Prior to August, KINK last reached the five-share level (6+) in February (5.0). In a somewhat similar boat is Salem Media Group contemporary Christian KFIS “104.1 The Fish,” which jumps by one-half share in September after posting a +.8 in August (1.7 – 2.5 – 3.0, #17 to #16, 6+). Entering the August sweep, “The Fish” had been down in each of the previous four sweeps for a cumulative -.8 (2.5 – 2.1 – 2.0 – 1.8 – 1.7, 6+). Following four straight up or flat trends that netted a +1.6 (4.0 – 4.0 – 4.6 – 5.4 – 5.6, 6+), Entercom-owned KGON “92.3 Portland’s Classic Rock” is a collective -.8 in August and September (5.6 – 5.4 – 4.8, 6+), slipping from fourth to sixth. July’s 5.6 is the highest 6+-showing for KGON since June 2017 (5.6, as well). Off by one-half share each are KGON’s adult hits cluster-mate KYCH “97.1 Charlie – We Play Everything,” which falls out of the top ten (#10 to #11); iHeartMedia-owned KXJM “Jam’n 107.5 Portland’s #1 For Hip-Hop” (3.3, #12 to #13); and Alpha Media’s KUPL “98.7 The Bull – #1 for New Country” (#16 to #17). “Charlie” is -1.0 in three straight down or flat trends (4.6 – 4.6 – 4.1 – 3.6, 6+) and is below a four-share for the first time since April 2016’s 3.9. “Jam’n” had been a collective +.4 in four straight up or flat moves (3.4 – 3.4 – 3.6 – 3.6 – 3.8, 6+), while “The Bull” is -1.6 in three straight sweeps without an increase (4.0 – 4.0 – 3.9 – 2.9 – 2.4, 6+). Even though iHeartMedia-owned CHR KKRZ is without a gain for the fourth sweep in a row for a combined loss of nine-tenths (4.0 – 3.6 – 3.4 – 3.3 – 3.1 – 3.1, 6+), “Z-100 Portland’s #1 Hit Music Station” climbs from #15 to #14.

Charlotte

Spoken-Word Formats – Backsliding from #14 to #15, Entercom news/talk WBT has a May – September (6+) topline of 2.6 – 2.8 – 2.7 – 2.9 – 2.9. When WBT gained two-tenths in June, it halted three straight losses that accounted for a -1.7 (4.3 – 3.6 – 3.4 – 2.6, 6+). Immediately prior to that particular streak, WBT was a collective +1.2 in three increases in succession  (3.1 – 3.2 – 4.0 – 4.3, 6+). Following four straight down or flat sweeps that led to a -1.1 (1.7 – 1.7 – 1.1 – .7 – .6, 6+), co-owned sports talk WFNZ “The Fan – Charlotte’s Sports Leader” improves by a collective one-half share in August and September (.6 – 1.0 – 1.1, 6+) and is unchanged at #19. “The Fan” bounced back from February’s -.7 with a one-half share gain in March. A combined -1.4 in three downward moves in succession (4.1 – 3.7 – 3.0 – 2.7, 6+), University Radio Foundation news/talk WFAE drifts from #13 to #17. Up one-half share in June, “Charlotte’s NPR News Source” had a consistent January – May topline trending of 3.6 – 3.5 – 3.3 – 3.5 – 3.6 (6+). Having tripled its 6+-share as a result of three gains in a row (.2 – .4 – .5 – .6, 6+), South Carolina Educational Television Commission news/talk WNSC is off one-tenth to .5 (6+) but remains at #20.

Charlotte Music Formats – Continuing a down/up pattern that began in March and includes September’s +.8 (3.9 – 3.4 – 3.6 – 3.1 – 3.2 – 2.7 – 3.5, 6+), iHeartMedia CHR WHQC “Channel 96.1” (#15 to #12) is a combined -.4 in that stretch. Steady at #5, adult hits sibling WLKO “102.9 The Lake – Charlotte’s We Play Anything Station” is up or flat for the fifth straight month for an overall +1.4 (4.1 – 4.3 – 4.7 – 5.2 – 5.5 – 5.5, 6+). By posting a gain of six-tenths to 1.7 (flat at #18, 6+), Davidson College-owned WDAV “Classical Public Radio” erases the six-tenths it lost in three straight sweeps without an increase (1.7 – 1.3 – 1.1 – 1.1, 6+). Advancing by six-tenths as well is iHeartMedia’s WKKT “96.9 The Kat – Charlotte’s #1 for New Country,” which is an overall +.8 in three straight up or flat moves (6.0 – 6.2 – 6.2 – 6.8, 6+) and continues in third-place. Before gaining two-tenths in July, “The Kat” was a combined -1.0 in May and June (7.0 – 6.4 – 6.0, 6+). Format rival – Beasley Media Group’s WSOC – is not only up or flat for the fourth time in a row for an overall +1.5 (6.2 – 6.9 – 6.9 – 7.5 – 7.7, 6+) – “103.7 Country’s Hottest Hits” advances from second to first. Prior to August, the last time WSOC reached the seven-share level (6+) was in “Holiday” 2016 (7.0). Changing places with WSOC is its urban AC sibling WBAV “V-101.9,” which is -1.0 in August and September (7.9 – 7.6 – 6.9, first to second, 6+). WBAV stayed at #1 in back-to-back ratings periods, a highly-unusual occurrence in Charlotte. Prior to the August 2018 sweep, no station in this North Carolina metro had repeated at #1 since September 2017/October/November when iHeartMedia classic rocker WRFX “The Fox” accomplished the feat. It has been a revolving door for the market’s top spot which has been held by (in chronological order) iHeartMedia adult hits WLKO (December 2017); Beasley Media Group adult contemporary WKQC (“Holiday” 2017); iHeartMedia country WKKT (January 2018); Beasley Media Group urban AC WBAV (February); WRFX (March); WKKT (April); WBAV (May); WSOC (June); WBAV (July and August); and WSOC (September). “V-101.9” was +1.4 in May; eroded by -1.2 in June; and erased that -1.2 in its entirety in July with a +1.2. After notching five positive spikes in succession for an overall gain of nine-tenths (4.0 – 4.1 – 4.2 – 4.3 – 4.5 – 4.9, 6+), Beasley Media Group urban contemporary WPEG slips by one-tenth in September to 4.8 (6+). “Power 98” remains at #8 for the fourth straight month; August 2018’s 4.9 is its best 6+-showing since 5.9 in August 2017.

San Antonio

Spoken-Word Formats – An uptick of one-tenth (3.8 – 3.9, 6+) is enough to propel iHeartMedia news/talk WOAI News Radio 1200 – San Antonio’s News, Traffic, & Weather” from #11 into the top ten (#9). July’s 3.5 was its lowest 6+-stat since “Holiday” 2017’s 2.8. Repeating at #22, Alpha Media news/talk KTSA “Stay Connected” returns the three-tenths it gained in August (1.4 – 1.7 – 1.4, 6+). KTSA was a collective -.5 in June and July (1.9 – 1.8 – 1.4, 6+), after not having a loss for five reports in a row for a collective +.6 (1.3 – 1.6 – 1.7 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 1.9, 6+). Unchanged from August in 6+ AQH share (.7), iHeartMedia sports talk KTKR moves from #30 to #27. This time last month, “Ticket 760 – San Antonio’s Sports Station” wiped away its combined -.3 from three straight one-tenth decreases (.7 – .6 – .5 – .4, 6+) with a +.3. Texas Public Radio news/talk KSTX duplicates August’s +.4 (2.6 – 3.0 – 3.4, 6+), climbing from #14 to #12. A July loss of seven-tenths suspended three up or flat moves that led to a +.5 (2.8 – 2.9 – 3.3 – 3.3, 6+). With a +1.0 to 4.7 in Holiday2017, KSTX crossed the four-share level (6+) for the first time in its PPM-history.

San Antonio Music Formats – Not only is Cox Media Group classic hits-oldies KONO-FM the market leader for the ninth successive sweep, “101.1 San Antonio’s Greatest Hits” is +2.2 in four straight increases (6.6 – 7.0 – 7.7 – 7.8 – 8.8, 6+) and reaches the eight-share threshold (8.8) for the first time since November 2016’s 8.2. Its +.4 in June stalled three consecutive downward moves for an overall -.7 (7.3 – 7.2 – 6.9 – 6.6, 6+). Country-formatted stations continue to hold down the #2 and #3 slots, however, iHeartMedia’s KAJA “KJ-97 San Antonio’s #1 Country Station” (5.6 – 6.1, +.5, third to second, 6+) overtakes Cox Media Group-owned KCYY “Y-100 San Antonio’s New Country Leader” (6.8 – 6.0, -.8, second to third, 6+). The +2.7 that “KJ-97” racked up in January and February (4.1 – 5.2 – 6.8, 6+) was cut virtually in half in March and April with a collective -1.3; “KJ-97” answered with a +.6 in May. September’s -.8 by “Y-100” suspends three straight gains that netted +1.5 (5.3 – 5.7 – 5.9 – 6.8, 6+). In August, it reached the six-share level (6.8) for the first time since October 2017’s 6.0. Off one-tenth in May, KCYY curtailed four straight up or flat trends that accounted for a +1.3 (4.1 – 4.7 – 4.7 – 5.1 – 5.4, 6+). These two country adversaries were locked together in the runner-up slot in June. Three straight decreases by KROM accounted for a -1.7 (6.1 – 5.5 – 4.7 – 4.4, 6+), but the Univision Radio regional Mexican outlet answers with a +.6 to 5.0 (seventh to fourth, 6+). “Que Buena 92.9” was a combined +.5 in April and May. Improving by six-tenths as well is Cox Media Group’s KISS “Rocks San Antonio,” which is an overall +.9 in three consecutive up or flat moves (3.6 – 3.6 – 3.9 – 4.5, tenth to seventh, 6+). Bouncing back from August’s -.6 with a September increase of one-half share (4.3 – 4.8, 6+), classic rock cluster-mate KTKX  advances from eighth to sixth. Entering the August sweep, “106.7 The Eagle” gained nine-tenths in four straight up or flat trends (4.0 – 4.0 – 4.3 – 4.5 – 4.9, 6+). Gaining one-half share as well are Alpha Media regional Mexican KSAH “Norteno 104.1,” up a collective six-tenths in four straight sweeps without a loss (2.9 – 3.0 – 3.0 – 3.0 – 3.5, #14 to #11, 6+) and Univision Radio’s KXTN “107.5 Tejano & Proud” (2.7 – 3.2, #17 to #15, 6+). On the heels of August’s +.5, which ended three straight decreases that produced a loss of seven-tenths (4.7 – 4.4 – 4.2 – 4.0, 6+), Univision Radio rhythmic CHR KBBT surrenders more than twice that increase with a -1.1 to 3.4 (6+); “98.5 The Beat” plummets from #5 to #12. The wild ride continues for Cox Media Group hot AC KSMG, which was -.9 in three straight March through June downtrends (5.1 – 4.9 – 4.3 – 4.2, 6+); +.7 in July; -.9 in August; and now -.7 in September (4.0 – 3.3, 6+). “Magic 105.3 Today’s Best Music,” fades from #9 to #14 with its lowest 6+-share (3.3) in nearly three years (3.1, November 2015). Following four straight gains that accounted for a +1.8 (3.2 – 3.3 – 4.1 – 4.2 – 5.0, 6+), iHeartMedia CHR KXXM is an overall -2.1 in five April through September decreases (5.0 – 4.9 – 4.4 – 3.7 – 3.3 – 2.9, 6+); “96.1 Now – San Antonio’s #1 Hit Music Station” falls from #13 to #16. Meanwhile, Alpha Media’s similarly-formatted KTFM “Energy 94.1,” which was +.7 via three straight increases (2.1 – 2.4 – 2.5 – 2.8, 6+), falters by one-half share to 2.3 (#16 to #19, 6+).

Pittsburgh

Spoken-Word Formats – Flat at #10, Entercom news/talk KDKA-AM “News Radio 1020” is off four-tenths in three straight down of flat sweeps (4.4 – 4.2 – 4.0 – 4.0, 6+). A gain of two-tenths in June halted four sweeps in a row without an increase that produced a -1.1 (5.3 – 5.3 – 4.6 – 4.5 – 4.2, 6+). Co-owned sports talk KDKA-FM “93.7 The Fan” was a combined +1.3 in “Holiday” 2017 and January 2018; -.9 in February; +2.0 in April (5.8 – 7.8, 6+); -2.0 in three straight May – June – July declines (7.8 – 7.4 – 6.5 – 5.8, 6+); +1.4 in August (5.8 – 7.2, 6+); and now -1.1 in September (7.2 – 6.1, fourth to fifth, 6+). April’s 7.8 is the strongest 6+-showing for the Pittsburgh Pirates flagship since October 2015 when it scored a 10.1. A model of consistency – iHeartMedia sports talk WBGG “970 AM – ESPN Pittsburgh” (.1 – .2, +.1, flat at #18, 6+) has logged either a .1 (6+) or a .2 (6+) in each of the last 17 ratings periods. Adding six-tenths to August’s +.4 (2.0 – 2.4 – 3.0, 6+), Essential Public Media news/talk WESA carries on at #13 with its best 6+-showing (3.0) since October 2017’s 3.2. Before faltering by one-half share in April, “90.5 Pittsburgh’s NPR Station” was an overall +.8 as a result of three consecutive up or flat moves (2.1 – 2.7 – 2.9 – 2.9, 6+).

Pittsburgh Music Formats – A collective -1.7 in three negative moves in a row (7.3 – 6.9 – 6.3 – 5.6, 6+), iHeartMedia CHR WKST “96.1 Kiss FM Pittsburgh’s #1 Hit Music Station” dials up a +1.1 to 6.7 (fifth to fourth, 6+). Prior to August, the last time “Kiss” fell below a six-share (6+) was nearly five years ago (5.6, October 2013). Co-owned classic hits-oldies WWSW “94.5 – 3WS” (9.3 – 10.2, +.9, 6+) is #1 for the 19th consecutive ratings period and in double-digits (6+) for the fifth time this calendar year. WWSW was a combined +.9 in March and April (10.3 – 11.1 – 11.2, 6+), but forfeited -1.3 in May. In the runner-up slot for the ninth successive sweep, co-owned rocker WDVE erases nearly half of August’s -.8 with a September gain of three-tenths (8.5 – 7.7 – 8.0, 6+). WDVE was +1.6 (October 2017); -1.0 (November); -.8 (“Holiday 2017”); +.8 (January 2018); -.9 (February); -.5 in March; and -.8 in August. Debuting in August with a .4 (6+), Entercom’s urban contemporary WBZZ-HD3 adds six-tenths to 1.0 (6+) and remains at #17. After recording six straight up or flat trends since February for a collective +1.9 (2.3 – 2.4 – 2.7 – 2.7 – 3.2 – 3.7 – 4.2, 6+), iHeartMedia-owned WPGB surrenders seven-tenths (3.5, 6+) and exits the top ten (#9 to #11). With a 4.2 in August, “Big 104.7 – Pittsburgh’s #1 For New Country” reached the four-share threshold (6+) for the first time since February 2017’s 4.0. A one-half share loss to 3.4 (6+) by Steel City Media hot AC WLTJ suspends three consecutive improvements for a collective +1.1 (2.8 – 3.2 – 3.7 – 3.9, 6+), but “Q-92.9” continues at #12. After having their March 2018 – June 2018 information displayed, five stations are unlisted for the third straight month: classic hits-oldies WKPL and WPKL; and country-formatted WLYI, WOGG, and WOGI.

Sacramento

Spoken-Word Formats – Once again finishing in third-place, KFBK “Sacramento’s News, Weather, and Traffic Station” is down or flat for the eighth straight report for an overall -3.0 (8.6 – 8.1 – 8.1 – 7.8 – 6.7 – 6.3 – 6.0 – 6.0 – 5.6, 6+). The iHeartMedia-owned news/talk station was third in December 2017; second in “Holiday” 2017; first in January 2018; second in February; first in March (tied with KSEG); second in April, May, June, and July; and third in August and September. Meanwhile, the February – September topline trending for co-owned KSTE (moving from a three-way tie at #13 to #14) is: 2.5 – 2.4 – 2.5 – 2.5 – 2.4 – 2.4 – 2.3 – 2.6 (6+). In January, “Talk 650” notched a 2.7, its highest 6+-share since June 2017’s 2.8. Entercom’s KHTK “Sports 1140” is up one-tenth (1.1 – 1.2, #22 to #21, 6+). It is tied with co-owned KIFM-AM “ESPN Radio 1320,” which had lost 50% of its 6+-share (-.8) in three straight decreases (1.6 – 1.4 – 1.1 – .8, 6+), but adds four-tenths in September to 1.2 (#25 to #21, 6+). Capital Public Radio news/talk KXJZ tacks on two-tenths to August’s +.6 (4.5 – 5.1 – 5.3, 6+) and carries on in fourth-place. KXJZ was up a collective seven-tenths in May and June (4.3 – 4.7 – 5.0, 6+). After three straight up or flat trends that produced a net gain of four-tenths (.3 – .6 – .7 – .7, 6+), Northern California Public Broadcasting’s KQEI drops one-tenth to .5 (#27, 6+).

Sacramento Music Formats – Bragging rights for largest (6+) August 2018 – September 2018 increase by any station in the 12 PPM-markets noted here go to Entercom’s KRXQ “98 Rock” (3.9 – 5.2, +1.3, ninth to fifth, 6+). The last time “98 Rock” hit the five-share threshold (6+) was in December 2016 (5.1). Not only is co-owned KSEG #1 for the eighth successive sweep, “96.9 The Eagle – Sacramento’s Classic Rock” adds six-tenths to August’s +.1 (9.0 – 9.1 – 9.7, +.1, 6+). “The Eagle” was +1.0 in May; +.9 in June to 9.9, its strongest 6+-showing since July 2016’s 10.3; -.9 in July; and now +.6 in September. This marks the eleventh straight monthly report that Entravision Communications rhythmic CHR KHHM “Hot 103.5” (+.5, #16 to #13) is within 2.2 – 2.9 range: 2.9 – 2.6 – 2.5 – 2.7 – 2.5 – 2.6 – 2.4 – 2.3 – 2.5 – 2.2 – 2.7 (6+). Educational Media Foundation contemporary Christian KLVB “Positive & Encouraging K-Love” falters by one-half share (2.0 – 1.5, #18 to #19, 6+). In terms of 6+ AQH share, there is very little movement in the market’s country contest: Entravision Communications-owned KNTY “101.9 The Wolf” improves by one-tenth to 2.2 (#17 to #16, 6+), while Entercom’s KNCI “New Country 105.1” (4.4 – 4.2, sixth to eighth, 6+) and iHeartMedia’s KBEB “92.5 The Bull – #1 for New Country” (2.3 – 2.1, #13 to #17) are each down by two-tenths. “The Wolf” was off one-half share in April; lost one-tenth in May; regained one-tenth in June; was down four-tenths in July; and was flat in August. This time last month, “New Country” forfeited seven-tenths of July’s +.8. KNCI had been within 4.1 – 4.4 range (6+) between January and June (4.2 – 4.2 – 4.4 – 4.2 – 4.1 – 4.3, 6+); July’s 5.1 is its highest 6+-share since August 2017 (5.4). An August -1.1 by “The Bull” erased July’s +1.0. Immediately prior to being off four-tenths in May, “The Bull” was up or flat the previous four reports for an overall gain of seven-tenths (1.8 – 1.8 – 2.1 – 2.1 – 2.5, 6+).

Salt Lake City

Spoken-Word Formats – Even though Bonneville’s KSL drops two-tenths (5.0 – 4.8, 6+), “News Radio 102.7 FM & 1160 AM” advances from seventh to sixth. By picking up four-tenths in August, KSL pulled the plug on three consecutive declines that accounted for a -3.5 (8.1 – 5.2 – 4.9 – 4.6, 6+). Immediately prior to the May sweep, KSL, which was #1 in April, was +3.0 as a result of four consecutive increases (5.1 – 6.4 – 6.7 – 6.9 – 8.1, 6+). Following a May-August (bookend) topline of 4.1 – 4.0 – 4.0 – 4.1 (6+), iHeartMedia’s KNRS “Talk Radio 105.9 – Listen And You’ll Know” is off two-tenths to 3.9 (ninth to tenth, 6+). A +.3 in May ended three successive down or flat moves that accounted for a loss of two-tenths (4.0 – 3.9 – 3.9 – 3.8, 6+). Broadway Media-owned KALL recaptures half of August’s -.2 with a +.1 to 1.8 (#22 to #21, 6+). In advance of the August sweep, “ESPN 700 – Utah’s #1 Sports Talk” was an overall +.5 via four consecutive positive or flat moves (1.4 – 1.5 – 1.5 – 1.9 – 1.9, 6+). After four successive sweeps without a decrease that netted seven-tenths (2.8 – 2.9 – 3.1 – 3.5 – 3.5, 6+), University of Utah news/talk KUER falters by one-half share to 3.0 (#11 to #14, 6+). It previously was an overall -1.3 from three straight down or flat ratings periods (4.1 – 3.0 – 2.9 – 2.8, 6+). Brigham Young University news/talk KUMT debuts with a .9 (#26, 6+).

Salt Lake City Music Formats – Simultaneous with independent KSOP-FM “Z-104 Utah’s #1 Country” busting out a +1.1 (3.5 – 4.6, #11 to #8, 6+), Cumulus Media’s similarly-formatted KUBL “K-Bull 93 FM” freefalls by -1.5 (5.7 – 4.2, third to ninth, 6+). A combined -1.2 in June and July (4.6 – 3.9 – 3.4, 6+), “Z-104” added one-tenth in August. Meanwhile, when “The Bull” dropped two-tenths in August, it snapped a string of three straight improvements for a +1.1 (4.8 – 5.0 – 5.2 – 5.9, 6+). More than erasing August’s -.6 with a September gain of nine-tenths (2.7 – 3.6, 6+), Cumulus Media adult contemporary KBEE “B-98.7 Today’s Hits & Yesterday’s Favorites” jumps from #15 to #11. “B-98.7” gained six-tenths between April and July (2.7 – 3.3 – 3.3 – 3.3, 6+). Carrying on at #13, CHR cluster-mate KENZ “Power 94.9 Utah’s New Hit Music” posts its fifth consecutive increase for a +1.1 (2.4 – 2.5 – 2.8 – 2.9 – 3.3 – 3.4 – 3.5, 6+). Up eight-tenths (3.9 – 4.7, 6+), iHeartMedia-owned hot AC KJMY progresses from tenth to seventh. A one-tenth decline in August by “MY-99.5” ended at three a consecutive string of increases that netted a +1.1 (2.9 – 3.0 – 3.2 – 4.0, 6+). A collective +.9 in three straight sweeps without a loss (4.8 – 5.2 – 5.2 – 5.7, 6+) Capital Broadcasting’s similarly-programmed KBZN “Now 97.9 Today’s Best Music” leaps from sixth to fourth. After sharing the #1 slot in August, iHeartMedia’s KODJ regains the three-tenths it squandered in August (6.7, 6+) as “94.1 Salt Lake’s Greatest Hits” takes sole possession of first place. It was #1 this past June and July, as well. Moreover, September’s +.3 brings to a close three straight decreases that accounted for a loss of one-half share (6.9 – 6.8 – 6.7 – 6.4, 6+). Prior to June’s -.1, KODJ nearly doubled (+3.4) its 6+ AQH share through five successive up or flat trends (3.5 – 5.3 – 5.3 – 5.4 – 5.8 – 6.9, 6+). May marked the first time KODJ reached the six-share level (6+) since its 6.6 in June 2016. The station with which it shared August’s penthouse – Bonneville adult contemporary KSFI – loses two-tenths (6.4 – 6.2, 6+) and takes over at #2. “FM 100.3 – Better Music, Better Work Day” gained one-half share in August. Immediately prior to August, KSFI was -2.3 in four successive down or flat trends (8.2 – 7.3 – 7.3 – 6.3 – 5.9, 6+) with August’s 5.9 its lowest 6+-showing since May 2016’s 5.7. Up nine-tenths in March – only to lose nine-tenths in April – “FM 100.3” was on top for six straight ratings periods (November 2017 through March 2018). After trending 4.4 – 4.2 – 4.4 (6+), Broadway Media’s KXRK “X-96 – Utah’s Original Alternative” stumbles by eight-tenths to 3.6 (6+) and exits the top ten (#8 to #11). By faltering six-tenths to 2.1 (6+), rhythmic CHR sibling KUUU “U-92” (#15 to #19) has its consecutive string of increases that produced a +.7 end at four (2.0 – 2.2 – 2.3 – 2.4 – 2.7, 6+).

Las Vegas

Spoken-Word Formats – Returning half of August’s +.2 (1.9 – 1.8, -.1, 6+), Entercom’s KXNT  remains at #20. Before August’s increase, “News Talk Radio 840” had been down or flat the previous three ratings periods for a net loss of four-tenths (2.1 – 2.0 – 1.7 – 1.7, 6+). The March – September topline for Beasley Media Group news/talk KDWN “AM 720 Where Las Vegas Comes to Talk” (#23 to #24 ) is .9 – .9 – 1.1 – 1.0 – 1.1 – 1.1 – 1.0 (6+). A one-half share decrease in March concluded five straight positive or flat trends (.7 – .7 – .7 – .7 – 1.3 – 1.4, 6+) that doubled KDWN’s 6+-share. A combined -.3 in June and July (.8 – .6 – .5, 6+), Lotus Communications sports talk KWWN “ESPN Radio 1100” is now +.4 in August and September (.5 – .6 – .9, #27 to #25, 6+). Nevada Public Radio’s KNPR is an overall +.9 through four consecutive improvements (2.0 – 2.4 – 2.6 – 2.8 – 2.9, #15 to #13, 6+) and has its best 6+-showing since March (2.9, as well). A cumulative -.9 in April and May (2.9 – 2.6 – 2.0, 6+) directly followed three consecutive improvements that accounted for a +1.0 (1.9 – 2.5 – 2.6 – 2.9, 6+).

Las Vegas Music Formats – It’s another game of music chairs atop the leaderboard between Beasley Media Group classic hits-oldies KKLZ “96.3 – 70s, 80s and More” (7.5 – 6.9, -.6, first to second, 6+) and iHeartMedia adult contemporary KSNE “Sunny 106.5 Better Music for a Better Workday” (6.3 – 7.5, +1.2, second to first, 6+). Whereas KKLZ gained eight-tenths in August, “Sunny” spiraled by -1.3. The end result was KKLZ succeeding KSNE at #1. It is a familiar pattern between these two properties as “Sunny” was off six-tenths in April and replaced by KKLZ at #1. In May, “Sunny” succeeded KKLZ at #1. The two swapped places at the top in March as well. Back in December, KKLZ was ousted from the penthouse by “Sunny” after five straight months there. August marked the ninth time between July 2017 and August 2018 that KKLZ has been #1: July 2017 through November 2017, January 2018, February 2018, April 2018, and August 2018. KKLZ, which was up nine-tenths in July, has its best 6+-performance (7.5) since January’s 7.6. “Sunny” had been on top in May, June, and July, with July’s 7.6 its highest 6+-share since “Holiday” 2017’s 12.5. Unchanged at #4, Beasley Media Group urban-rhythmic oldies KOAS “Old School 105.7” is a cumulative +1.7 in five consecutive upticks (4.1 – 4.3 – 4.7 – 4.9 – 5.1 – 5.8, 6+). Adding one-half share to August’s +.2 (4.1 – 4.3 – 4.8, 6+), iHeartMedia-owned KWNR “95.5 The Bull – Las Vegas’ New Country Leader” advances from eighth to sixth. Within 2.2 – 2.9 range (6+) in each of the last six survey periods (2.9 – 2.3 – 2.2 – 2.4 – 2.3 – 2.6, 6+), Lotus Communications’ KOMP “92.3 The Rock Station” erodes by nine-tenths to 1.7 (6+) and departs the top twenty (#16 to #22). Forfeiting one-half share each are iHeartMedia adult hits KYMT “93.1 The Mountain” (3.2 – 2.7, #12 to #14, 6+) and Entercom alternative KXTE “X-107.5” (3.0 – 2.5, #13 to #16, 6+).

Cincinnati

Spoken-Word Formats – An overall +2.8 in three straight positive spikes (7.7 – 9.1 – 10.4 – 10.5, 6+), iHeartMedia news/talk WLW has that bounty slivered exactly in half (9.1, -1.4, 6+). Nonetheless, the Cincinnati Reds flagship is #1 for the fourth month in a row although it shares the honor with Cumulus Media classic hits-oldies WGRR (see below). August 2018’s 10.5 is WLW’s highest 6+-share in more than two years (10.8, June 2016). “The Big One” was a combined +2.0 in January and February; -1.0 in March; +1.6 in April; -1.2 in May; and now -1.4 in September. Off four-tenths to 3.7 (6+), co-owned WKRC “55 KRC The Talk Station in Cincinnati” slips from eighth to tenth. It was a collective +1.3 in July and August (2.8 – 3.6 – 4.1, 6+), with July’s increase stopping four straight monthly reports without an increase for a collective -1.0 (3.8 – 3.7 – 3.3 – 3.0 – 2.8, 6+). Sports talk sibling WCKY “Cincinnati’s ESPN 1530” is flat at .9 (6+), but climbs from #20 to #19. Cincinnati Public Radio news/talk WVXU is unchanged from August in both 6+ AQH share (3.5, its best 6+-stat since February’s 3.6) and 6+ market rank (#12).

Cincinnati Music Formats – A gain of eight-tenths (to 4.8, ninth to seventh, 6+) by iHeartMedia’s WEBN “Cincinnati’s Rock Station” all but eliminates its -.9 in four straight down or flat trends (4.9 – 4.4 – 4.2 – 4.2 – 4.0, 6+). Adding six-tenths to August’s one-half share increase (4.1 – 4.6 – 5.2, 6+), Hubbard rhythmic hot AC WREW “Mix 94.9” inches up from seventh to sixth. Stuck on 4.9 (6+) in May and June, “Mix” was off eight-tenths in July, with 4.1 its lowest 6+-share since “Holiday” 2017’s 3.7. Over and above continuing a down/up pattern that surfaced in May (9.6 – 8.2 – 8.7 – 8.6 – 9.1, 6+), Cumulus Media classic hits-oldies WGRR “103.5 Cincinnati’s Greatest Hits” proceeds from the runner-up slot to a first-place tie with iHeartMedia news/talk WLW. After posting a one-half share gain in August to 1.3, its best 6+-stat since February’s 1.5, Cincinnati Public Radio’s classical-formatted WGUC surrenders six-tenths to .7 (6+) and leaves the top twenty (#18 to #22). Between March and July, “90.9 Music For Your Heart, Mind, & Spirit” registered a .8 (6+) four times (.8 – .8  – .8 – .9  – .8, 6+). Having trended 7.9 – 8.1 – 7.9 (June-July-August, 6+), Hubbard hot AC WKRQ “Q-102 Cincinnati’s Hit Music” slumps by one-half share in September to 7.4 (third to fourth, 6+). Off eight-tenths in four straight sweeps without an increase (5.6 – 5.2 – 4.8 – 4.8 – 4.8, 6+), Cumulus Media’s WOFX “92.5 The Fox – Cincinnati’s Classic Rock” shifts from sixth to seventh, while iHeartMedia CHR WKFS “Kiss 107.1 Cincinnati’s #1 Hit Music Station” is -1.0 in five straight down or flat sweeps (4.9 – 4.2 – 4.2 – 3.9 – 3.9 – 3.9, tenth to ninth, 6+).

Orlando

Spoken-Word Formats – Off one-tenth (4.7 – 4.6, 6+), iHeartMedia news/talk WTKS “Real Radio 104.1 – We Say What We Want” slips from ninth to tenth. Its +1.0 in August suspended three straight decreases that resulted in a -1.8 (5.5 – 5.3 – 4.0 – 3.7, 6+). July’s 3.7 is the lowest 6+-showing for “Real Radio” since “Holiday” 2017’s 2.2. Steady at #11, Cox Media Group news/talk WDBO-FM “News 96.5” is +.8 in three consecutive increases (3.3 – 3.7 – 3.8 – 4.1, 6+). Before gaining four-tenths in July, WDBO-FM was -1.4 in five straight down or flat trends (4.7 – 4.7 – 4.6 – 3.9 – 3.9 – 3.3, 6+). As the result of three successive sweeps without a loss, iHeartMedia news/talk WFLF is a collective +.6 (1.5 – 1.5 – 1.9 – 2.1, #16 to #15, 6+). Unhanged at #18, co-owned sports talk WYGM “FM 96.9 The Game – Orlando’s Sports Leader” is likewise a collective +.6 via seven successive up or flat trends (.7 – .9 – .9 – 1.0 – 1.0 – 1.0 – 1.0 – 1.3, 6+). It is two-tenths ahead of Cox Media Group sports talk WDBO-AM “ESPN 580 Orlando” (.7 – 1.1, #22 to #20, 6+). Owing to September’s +.5 (to 4.0, steady at #12, 6+), Community Communications’ news/talk WMFE “90.7 Public Radio for Central Florida” halts a down/up pattern that began in February: 3.7 – 2.9 – 3.5 – 3.3 – 3.8 – 3.4 – 3.5.

Orlando Music Formats – Substituting August’s -.5 with September’s +.7 (4.3 – 5.0, 6+), Cox Media Group rhythmic CHR WPYO “Power 95.3” jumps from tenth to eighth with its strongest 6+-stat (5.0) in more than two years (5.3, August 2016). Prior to August, “Power” was a collective +1.2 in four successive sweeps without a loss (3.6 – 3.6 – 4.1 – 4.3 – 4.8, 6+). As a result of four straight negative moves (6.3 – 6.1 – 6.0 – 5.7 – 5.2, 6+), Entercom hot AC WOMX was an overall -1.1, but “Mix 105.1” picks up one-tenth to 5.3 (6+) and climbs from eighth to seventh. An increase of one-half share to 7.7 (steady at #2, 6+) by iHeartMedia-owned CHR WXXL “XL-106.7 Orlando’s #1 Hit Music Station” applies the brakes to three downward moves in a row that accounted for a collective -1.7 (8.9 – 8.4 – 7.8 – 7.2, 6+). Between February and May, WXXL was up an overall six-tenths via three increases of two tenths each (8.3 – 8.5 – 8.7 – 8.9, 6+). While co-owned Spanish tropical WRUM is #1 for the ninth month in a row, “Rumba 100” is an overall -3.4 in August and September (11.6 – 10.1 – 8.2, 6+), with September’s -1.9 the largest (6+) August 2018 – September 2018 erosion by any station in the 12 PPM-markets noted here. Prior to the May sweep, WRUM was +1.8 in four upticks in succession (8.9 – 9.3 – 9.5 – 9.9 – 10.7, 6+). April 2017s 12.8 is the best-ever 6+-share in the station’s PPM-history. An overall +2.1 in six straight up or flat trends (4.0 – 4.2 – 4.5 – 5.1 – 5.6 – 5.6 – 6.1, 6+), Cox Media Group country WWKA “K-92.3” surrenders roughly half that increase (5.0, -1.1, sixth to eighth, 6+).

Cleveland

Spoken-Word Formats – This is the fourth successive sweep without an increase for iHeartMedia news/talk WTAM “1100 Cleveland’s News Radio” (6.6 – 6.5 – 6.4 – 6.0 – 6.0, seventh to eighth, 6+), which is -.6 in that stretch. A loss of one-tenth in June interrupted three consecutive increases that netted +1.3 (5.3 – 5.5 – 6.3 – 6.6, 6+); May’s 6.6 is the best 6+-stat for the Cleveland Indians flagship since October 2017’s 8.3. Not only is Entercom’s WKRK +1.3 in three upticks in a row (3.4 – 3.5 – 3.8 – 4.7, 6+), “Sports Radio 92.3 The Fan” cracks the top ten (#12 to #9). Cleveland’s “Fan” was a combined -1.8 in three straight (March through June) setbacks (5.2 – 4.4 – 4.2 – 3.4, 6+). A gain of one-half share (2.7 – 3.2, steady at #13, 6+) takes Ideastream-owned news/talk outlet WCPN to its best 6+-showing (3.2) since February’s 3.6. WCPN was a combined -2.5 in February and March (5.3 – 3.6 – 2.8, 6+).

Cleveland Music Formats – In addition to notching four straight improvements for an overall +1.5 (7.8 – 8.4 – 8.5 – 8.7 – 9.3, 6+), iHeartMedia classic hits-oldies WMJI “Cleveland’s Greatest Hits” is #1 for the fourth consecutive sweep. Ten recent WMJI fluctuations include: +.8 (November); -.9 (December); +2.5 (Holiday” 2017); -1.9 (January); +1.9 (February); -2.0 (March); +1.0 (April); -1.5 (May); +.6 (June); and +.6 (September).  When “Cleveland’s Greatest Hits” reached double-digits (6+) in “Holiday” 2017, it was the first time WMJI accomplished that feat since September 2016 (10.8). Having lost roughly 40% of its 6+ AQH share (-4.1) in five straight down or flat trends since March (10.1 – 9.6 – 8.1 – 6.8 – 6.8 – 6.0, 6+), Radio One urban AC WZAK notches a +.5 to 6.5 (seventh to fifth, 6+). With a +.9, WZAK reached the top spot in December, but fell to third in “Holiday” 2017. Down two-tenths to 6.6 (yet progressing from fifth to fourth, 6+), urban contemporary cluster-mate WENZ “Z-107.9” concludes four straight improvements that netted +1.9 (4.9 – 5.6 – 6.0 – 6.1 – 6.8, 6+). Relinquishing more than half of the +2.4 generated via four successive upticks (6.0 – 7.1 – 8.0 – 8.2 – 8.4, 6+), Entercom-owned WNCX “98.5 Cleveland’s Classic Rock” (6.9, -1.5, 6+) slips from second to third. August’s 8.4 is its finest 6+-performance since June 2017 (8.4, as well). A collective +1.7 in July and August (6.4 – 7.4 – 8.1, 6+), iHeartMedia’s WGAR “99.5 – Cleveland’s #1 for New Country” surrenders nine-tenths to 7.2 (6+), yet actually advances from third to second. Three straight negative January through April moves resulting in a -1.0 (7.2 – 6.8 – 6.3 – 6.2, 6+) were largely halted by a +.8 in May; WGAR was -.6 in June.

Kansas City

Spoken-Word Formats – Up seven-tenths in August to curtail five straight February through July decreases that accounted for a -1.7 (5.6 – 5.4 – 5.3 – 4.8 – 4.1 – 3.9, 6+), Entercom news/talk KMBZ-FM “98.1 News-Traffic-Weather” drops two-tenths in September to 4.4 (eighth to ninth, 6+). Forfeiting two-tenths as well is co-owned KMBZ-AM “Talk 980” (2.4 – 2.2, flat at #19, 6+). “Talk 980” was locked on 2.2 (6+) in April and May before slipping one-tenth in June. Down or flat for the third sweep in a row for a loss of two-tenths (.7 – .6 – .6 – .5, 6+), Cumulus Media’s KCMO-AM “Talk Radio 710 AM” remains at #23. Entercom’s KCSP “610 Sports Radio,” which was up three-tenths in July and August (2.9 – 3.0 – 3.2, 6+), is off one-tenth to 3.1 (#12 to #15, 6+). The Kansas City Royals flagship more than doubled its 6+-share with a combined +1.9 in April and May (1.8 – 3.1 3.7, 6+). Three-tenths behind KCSP is Union Broadcasting’s WHB “Sports Radio 810,” which is a collective +.8 in four straight increases (2.0 – 2.1 – 2.4 – 2.6 – 2.8, #18 to #16, 6+). WHB was -.9 in February; +.9 in March; and an overall -2.0 in April and May (4.0 – 2.9 – 2.0, 6+). Locked on 3.0 (6+) in July and August, University of Missouri news/talk KCUR gains three-tenths to 3.3 (#14 to #12, 6+). Prior to May, KCUR was up nine-tenths as a result of six straight November 2017 through April 2018 up or flat trends (1.9 – 2.2 – 2.4 – 2.7 – 2.7 – 2.7 – 2.8, 6+).

Kansas City Music Formats – Not only is Cumulus Media’s KCFX #1 for the fourth month in a row, “101 The Fox – Kansas City’s Classic Rock Station” is a cumulative +1.8 in four straight sweeps without a loss (7.0 – 7.2 – 7.2 – 7.8 – 8.8, 6+). Moreover, this (8.8) is the strongest 6+-performance for KCFX since 9.1 in “Holiday” 2017. Prior to June, “The Fox” – last held the #1 position in February. It was -1.6 through three February through May decreases in succession (8.6 – 8.0 – 7.6 – 7.0, 6+). Tacking on eight-tenths to August’s +1.0 (5.5 – 6.5 – 7.3, 6+), Entercom-owned KQRC repeats in the runner-up slot. In six consecutive Holiday 2017 – June 2018 monthlies without a loss, “98.9 The Rock” was a combined +1.7 (4.5 – 4.5 – 5.0 – 5.6 – 5.8 – 5.8 – 6.2, 6+) and then dropped seven-tenths in July. In addition to entering the top ten (#11 to #7) with a gain of six-tenths (4.0 – 4.6, 6+), Steel City Media adult contemporary KCKC “KC-102.1 Today’s Best Variety” has its highest 6+-stat (4.6) since 4.7 in March. At the same time that KCKC sibling KBEQ “Q-104 New Hit Country” gains six-tenths to 5.6 (sixth to fifth, 6+), co-owned KFKF “Country 94.1” regresses by nine-tenths (6.2 – 5.3, fourth to sixth, 6+). “Q-104” was off a combined nine-tenths in July and August (5.9 – 5.8 – 5.0, 6+). It was up or flat in seven straight December 2017 through June 2018 sweeps for an overall +2.0 (3.9 – 3.9 – 4.4 – 4.4 – 4.8 – 5.5 – 5.8 – 5.9, 6+). Meanwhile, “Country 94.1” improved by six-tenths in July (5.9 – 6.5, 6+). When KFKF posted a one-half share increase in May, it erased the -.5 it recorded through three decreases in a row (6.0 – 5.9 – 5.6 – 5.5, 6+). The market’s other country FM – Entercom’s WDAF “106.5 The Wolf” – is down or flat for the fifth time in a row for a net loss of six-tenths (4.9 – 4.8 – 4.6 – 4.6 – 4.6 – 4.3, 6+), dipping from eighth to tenth. Flat at #3, Cumulus Media classic hits-oldies KCMO-FM “94.9 Kansas City’s Greatest Hits” is a combined -1.8 in six successive March through September declines (8.1 – 7.7 – 7.2 – 7.1 – 6.8 – 6.4 – 6.3, 6+). “Kansas City’s Greatest Hits” was #1 in March, April, and May.

Columbus

Spoken-Word Formats – The extremely steady March – September topline of iHeartMedia news/talk WTVN is 5.4 – 5.6 – 5.4 – 5.3 – 5.6 – 5.4 – 5.5 (unchanged at #6, 6+). Earlier this year though, “News Radio 610” was +1.5 in January; -1.0 in February; and -.7 in March. A collective +.6 in August and September (.5 – .9 – 1.1, 6+), iHeartMedia sports talk WXZX “105.7 The Zone” progresses from #15 to #14. Following four down or flat sweeps in succession for a -.2 (.9 – .9 – .8 – .8 – .7, 6+), “The Zone” was +.3 in April and May, but dropped a collective one-half share in June and July for a 50% reduction of its 6+-share (1.0 – .9 – .5, 6+). Ohio State University news/talk WOSU is without a loss for the third month in a row for a net gain of seven-tenths (3.9 – 3.9 – 4.5 – 4.6, flat at #7, 6+). September’s 4.6 is its strongest 6+-stat since 4.7 in August 2017.

Columbus Music Formats – Anchored in the runner-up slot for the ninth time in succession, iHeartMedia mainstream CHR WNCI “97.9 Columbus’ Hit Music Station” – which was +1.3 in June and -1.8 in July and August (10.7 – 10.0 – 8.9, 6+) – gains one-half share to 9.4 (6+). WNCI lost seven-tenths in July, curtailing three successive up or flat March through June monthlies that yielded a +1.7 (9.0 – 9.4 – 9.4 – 10.7, 6+). June’s 10.7 is the strongest 6+-stat for WNCI since October 2017 (10.7, as well). Well ahead of WNCI is co-owned WCOL (15.0, -.1, 6+), which is #1 for the ninth consecutive sweep. When “92.3 Columbus’ #1 For New Country” eroded by -1.2 in August, it concluded five consecutive increases for an overall +4.0 (12.3 – 13.4 – 14.4 – 14.5 – 15.7 – 16.3, 6+). WCOL has been in double-digits (6+) each sweep since June 2017. Among the major fluctuations for “92.3 Columbus’ #1 For New Country” this calendar year are +3.1 (January); -1.7 (February); +1.1 (March); +1.0 (April); +1.2 (June); +.6 (July); and 1.2 (August). Regressing by six-tenths each are One Connection Media Group contemporary Christian WCVO “104.9 The River” (4.1 – 3.5, steady at #8, 6+) and Saga Communications hot AC WVMX “Mix 107.9” (3.3 – 2.7, ninth to tenth, 6+). Following four consecutive improvements that netted a +1.6 (5.1 – 5.6 – 5.7 – 5.9 – 6.7, 6+), iHeartMedia adult hits WODC “93.3 The Bus – We Play Anything” falters by three-tenths to 6.4 (third to fourth, 6+); 6.7 in August is its highest 6+-share since 8.1 in “Holiday” 2017.

Wednesday, October 3, 2018

| October 3, 2018

Beasley Launches Esports Initiative; Acquires ‘Checkpoint Radio’ Show. The company made the announcement of its acquisition of the esports gaming lifestyle radio show, “Checkpoint Radio” at the 2018 Esports Business Summit at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas, Nevada yesterday (10/2).  Beasley Media Group is calling its esports initiative BEASLEY XP.  “Checkpoint Radio” is a weekly, two-hour show (also found on the twitch platform) hosted by Nathan Bender, Norris Howard, Robbie Landis, and Joe Sloan. It’s currently heard on Beasley’s WBZ-FM, Boston “98.5 The Sports Hub,” WPEN-FM, Philadelphia “97.5 The Fanatic,” as well as in 58 other markets across the United States and Canada via Westwood One.  Beasley CEO Caroline Beasley comments, “Our company is excited to enter the growing arena of esports.  It’s a great way for us to reach future generations of listeners as we continue to focus on new and innovative ways to grow and transform the way we do business as a company.”  Pictured here are (from l-r): Nate Bender, Caroline Beasley, and Joe Sloan.

A Reunion at Westwood One Podcast Network. Pictured above at the Westwood One Podcast Network offices are (from l-r): WWO SVP of digital Tim Sabean, Jackie “The Joke Man” Martling, Gregg “Opie” Hughes, and “Stuttering” John Melendez.  Hughes does the “Opie Radio” podcast with WWO and Sabean, Martling, and Melendez all worked together on the Howard Stern show.  For a period, both the Opie & Anthony and Howard Stern shows aired on SiriusXM at the same time and Sabean was SVP of the Howard Stern channels there until 2014.

WNBF, Binghamton’s Roger Neel Celebrates 40 Years with the Station. At Townsquare Media’s news/talk WNBF, Binghamton, morning host Roger Neel (pictured above) is being honored for his four decades of service to the station.  The station writes on its website that “Neel joined WNBF on October 2, 1978.  He had been working in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, when he learned of an opportunity to be the play-by-play announcer for the Broome Dusters in Binghamton.  Over the years, Neel has covered countless sporting events for WNBF Radio.  He also has been involved with television coverage of a wide range of Binghamton events over the years.  In addition to his sports-related work, he has served at WNBF in various capacities. He now is co-host of the station’s ‘First News’ program weekday mornings.  He also writes for the WNBF.com website and is the WNBF brand manager for Townsquare Media.” Neel was honored Tuesday afternoon with a luncheon at the radio station’s Court Street offices.

TALKERS News Notes.  On Tuesday afternoon (10/2), a jury in Atlantic County, New Jersey convicted Ferdinand “Freddy” Augello of murder in the death of WOND-AM, Atlantic City talk host April Kauffman in 2012.  The Pagans motorcycle gang member was also convicted of conspiracy and racketeering.  Prosecutors said April Kauffman was killed by hitman Francis Mullholland – hired by Augello – after her husband, Dr. James Kauffman, decided he wanted her dead for fear she would expose the prescription pill ring he was operating.  Mullholland is deceased and James Kauffman killed himself in his cell two weeks after being indicted in January of this year…..Las Vegas-based conservative media figure Wayne Allyn Root is expanding his reach as Las Vegas Review Journal opinion column is being syndicated nationally.  Root says, “It’s an amazing honor to announce that my Las Vegas Review Journal newspaper column has been chosen for national syndication by Creators Syndicate.  My political opinions will now reach newspapers across the USA.  I’ll be joining the Creators Syndicate lineup of stars such as Michelle Malkin, Patrick Buchanan, Ben Shapiro, Walter Williams, Armstrong Williams, Dick Morris, Thomas Sowell, and Judge Andrew Napolitano – all heroes of mine.”  Root is heard on the radio in national syndication via USA Radio Network and the program is simulcast on Newsmax TV…..iHeartMedia Houston and the Houston Rockets announce an extension of their long-term partnership to keep KBME-AM “Sportstalk 790 AM” as the Houston Rockets flagship radio station.  As part of the deal, all the games will also be broadcast on KTBZ-HD2 and many of the games will be simulcast on news/talk KTRH AM 740 and KODA-HD2…..Dr. Ronald Hoffman is celebrating his 30thyear talking medicine on the radio.  His nationally syndicated “Intelligent Medicine” show is one of the longest-running medical/health radio programs in the country.  After a brief run at WMCA, New York, Dr. Hoffman joined crosstown WOR in 1988, first as a local show, and then as a part of the WOR Radio Network.  Upon the demise of that network, the program moved to the Radio America network in 2014 where it remains today.  Hoffman says, “Although we have great sponsors and value their commitment, this show has always been about the audience first.  We never have and never will do anything to betray their trust and I strongly believe that’s why my show is still going strong.”…..Podcaster Stitcher announces it is naming Drew Welborn vice president of content partnerships. He’ll oversee Stitcher’s partnership team and the process of working with its podcast partners – ranging from content publishers to podcast talent…..Mt. Rushmore Broadcasting names Kevin Barrett as its new general manager.  Barrett has served with stations such as sports talk KTRB, San Francisco, KABZ-FM, Little Rock, and news/talk KTRS, St Louis.  Casper-based Mt. Rushmore operates 10 stations in Wyoming and South Dakota.  Barrett says, “I am thrilled to be in Casper. We have a dynamic array of brands and there are many opportunities for growth.  I am especially excited about working with the great Mt. Rushmore team.  This is a wonderful community, and I look forward to being a part of it.”…..The Philadelphia Flyers and Beasley Media Group announce a renewed broadcast partnership that includes sports talk WPEN-FM “97.5 The Fanatic” as the flagship station of the Flyers Radio Network and rock WMMR-FM as a partner broadcast station as part of a multi-year partnership extension.  In addition, new, original Flyers programming will be introduced on a weekly basis on “97.5 The Fanatic” during the 2018-19 season.  The first “Fanatic Flyers Weekly” hosted by Jason Myrtetus and Chris Therien will air this Thursday from 6:00 pm to -7:00 pm.

Harrison:  The ACLU and Judicial Crisis Network Wasted their Donors’ Contributions on Expensive Political TV Ads Both Pro and Con Kavanaugh.  TALKERS publisher Michael Harrison appeared this morning on the CNN Headline News (HLN) channel’s program “Across America with Carol Costello” to discuss the multi-million-dollar TV ad campaigns being waged by America First (pro) and the ACLU (con) in states represented by key undecided senators from both parties regarding their forthcoming votes in the Judge Brett Kavanaugh confirmation process. Harrison was joined by GOP “branding strategist” Justin Wallin. During the conversation, Harrison stated, “I think both organizations have wasted their donors’ money by investing in political advertisements that will have no impact on their intended targets’ minds.  The last people who will be influenced by the messages of political ads are politicians themselves who know very well that they are exercises in hyperbole.  The only winners in this scenario are the television production companies that produced these ads and the TV stations that are running them.”  Harrison added, “President Trump and the Republicans would have been smarter to kick Kavanaugh to the curb and replace him with a less distracting nominee than to hitch their wagon to his star and allow this circus to become about him and not their elected mission to fill the seat with a conservative.  Now, it might be too late.”

Kavanaugh Investigation, NYTimes Trump Piece, U.S.-China Tensions, Trump-Russia Investigation, Midterm Elections, Record High Dow/Debt Bubble Concerns, Amazon Wage Hike, Facebook Hack, Ricin Packages Sent to Pentagon, NFL Action, and MLB Playoffs Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (10/2). The accusations of sexual assault against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh and the FBI’s investigation into Christine Blasey Ford’s claim; the New York Times story alleging Donald Trump’s family engaged in tax schemes to achieve its wealth; U.S.-China tensions over tariffs and China’s military programs in the South China Sea; the investigation into possible connections between Trump campaign operatives and Russian agents; November’s midterm elections and the battle to control congress; the Dow hits a new, record high and concerns a global debt bubble could burst and result in a recession; the ramifications of Amazon’s decision to raise its workers’ minimum wage to $15; the hack of Facebook data; packages containing ricin are sent to the Pentagon; the weekend’s NFL action; and the Major League Baseball playoffs were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio during the week, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. In Portland, Entercom names Buck Wise new morning host at hot AC KRSK “105.1 The Buzz.”  Wise’s career includes stops at KFMS, Las Vegas; KYSR, Los Angeles; WKQI, Detroit; and KKRZ, Portland.  He says, “I’m honored to be joining the talented Entercom Portland family.  I’ve admired [market manager] Bill Ashenden and [program director] Brian Bridgman’s approach to local entertaining radio and I’m excited to work with them as a member of the KRSK team.”…..iHeartMedia announces that this year’s “iHeartRadio Jingle Ball Tour 2018 Presented by Capital One” will feature Alessia Cara at select stops across the country.  She’ll join the previously announced Bebe Rexha.  The full lineup of performers will be announced next Tuesday (10/9)…..Entercom is expected to unveil the new format for WIAD, Washington – the former hot AC “94.7 Fresh FM” today.  On Tuesday (10/2), Entercom took a number of staffers off the air – including morning host Tommy McFly – in advance of the format change.  The new format is rumored to be launching today at 5:00 pm ET and industry chatter has classic hits as a leading contender…..On Friday (10/5), more than 470 college radio stations will unite for College Radio Day.  The event is a celebration of college radio and this year has support from leaders such as FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, former Vice President Joe Biden, rocker Joan Jett, and producer/songwriter Kenny Laguna…..Service Broadcasting’s hip hop KKDA, Dallas “K104” is looking for an “elite” music director.  The company says that if you: are a “music maven” and “cultural curator” ready to elevate your brand, career and creativity; have a passion for people, music, culture and community; live, love and breathe the “hip hop” lifestyle; have mastered music scheduling and how to create the perfect music flow; and more, Service Broadcasting Group may have a rare opportunity for you in the fifth-largest market in America.  Send your resume package, music scheduling philosophy, success stories, and references to: SBG HR Manager Debbie Henry at jobs@k104fm.com.  No phone calls please. Service Broadcasting is an equal opportunity employer (EEO).

September 2018 PPM Data – Round Two. September 2018 ratings information has been released for Washington (D.C.), Boston, Miami, Detroit, Seattle, Phoenix, Minneapolis, San Diego, Denver, Tampa, Baltimore, and St. Louis. Nielsen Audio’s September 2018 survey period covered August 16 – September 12. See all the ratings for subscribing stations here.  Meanwhile, managing editor Mike Kinosian (Kinosian@TALKERS.com) provides his “Takeaways” from all 12 of these PPM markets below.

TWELVE TAKEAWAYS

Washington, DC

Spoken-Word Formats – A combined +1.0 in July and August (3.5 – 3.7 – 4.5, 6+), Cumulus Media news/talk WMAL levels out at 4.5 (6+) in September, yet progresses from seventh to sixth. Immediately prior to July, WMAL was a combined -1.5 via three consecutive downward moves (5.0 – 4.5 – 3.9 – 3.5, 6+). In March, it reached the five-share level (6+) for the first time in the PPM-era (5.0). Having completely erased July’s -.5 with an August +.5 (3.7 – 3.2 – 3.7, 6+), Entercom sports talk WJFK-FM “106.7 The Fan” now drops one-tenth to 3.6 (6+), shifting from ninth to tenth. July’s decrease ended three gains in a row by the Washington Nationals’ flagship that netted a +1.3 (2.4 – 3.1 – 3.4 – 3.7, 6+). Flat at .9 (6+), Radio One’s similarly-formatted WTEM “980 The Team” slides from #19 to #20. “The Team” had a lengthy hiatus from Nielsen Audio; reappeared in June with a 1.0 (6+); immediately disappeared again in July (0.0); but returned in August. The six most recent trends for WTOP are a very steady 9.6 – 9.7 – 9.5 – 9.3 – 9.4 – 9.4 (6+) as the Hubbard all-news facility sets the pace for the ninth straight month. Following four consecutive months at #1, it shifted to second-place in “Holiday” 2017. WTOP rebounded from April’s -.8 with a +.1 in May (10.4 – 9.6 – 9.7, 6+). Between January – June, WTOP and American University-owned news/talk WAMU “The Mind Is Our Medium” finished first and second, respectively. By gaining four-tenths in August, WAMU curtailed three straight flat or downward trends that resulted in a collective loss of nine-tenths (8.5 – 8.3 – 8.3 – 7.6, 6+) and returned (from #3) to its familiar runner-up slot. With a gain of two-tenths (8.0 – 8.2, 6+), it is ensconced there again in September. An August increase of two-tenths to .5 (6+) by WDCH ended three straight months without an increase (5 – .4 – .3 – .3, 6+), but the Entercom business news outlet forfeits one-tenth in September to .4 (6+) and is flat at #24.

Washington, DC Music Formats – Without an increase the past three sweeps for an overall loss of -1.1 (4.8 – 4.8 – 3.8 – 3.7, 6+), iHeartMedia adult contemporary WASH “97.1 Washington’s Variety of the ‘80s ‘90s and Today” answers with a +.7 to 4.4 (ninth to seventh, 6+). Greater Washington Educational Telecommunications’ WETA posts its third positive spike in succession for a collective +1.3 (2.2 – 2.3 – 2.9 – 3.5, #14 to #12, 6+). Prior to this sweep, “Classical 90.9” had been inside 2.0 – 2.9 range (6+) the past 22 ratings periods. The three-tenths lead Radio One-owned urban AC WMMJ “Majic” had over Howard University’s similarly-formatted WHUR lengthens to one-half share as “Majic” improves by three-tenths (7.0 – 7.3, 6+), while WHUR adds one-tenth (6.7 – 6.8, 6+). The two rivals repeat at third and fourth, respectively. Following six straight up or flat reports for a collective +2.3 (5.6 – 5.6 – 5.6 – 5.8 – 6.6 – 7.1 – 7.9, 6+), WMMJ faltered by nine-tenths in August. In July, “Majic”  registered the highest 6+-stat (7.9) in its PPM history, breaking the “old” record set the previous month (June). In April, “Majic” pulled ahead of WHUR for the first time since November 2015, which was when the two rivals were tied at 4.7 (6+). This is the sixth sweep in succession that WHUR has finished at #4. After four straight reports without an increase for an overall -1.4  (7.1 – 6.2 – 6.1 – 5.7 – 5.7, 6+), WHUR was a combined +1.1 in June and July (5.7 – 6.3 – 6.8), with July’s 6.8 its best 6+-showing since January’s 7.1. Despite being up or flat for the third successive report for a +.4 (2.6 – 2.9 – 2.9 – 3.0, 6+) iHeartMedia’s WMZQ “98.7 Today’s Best Country” backslides from #14 to #15. In August, co-owned WBIG recaptured the three-tenths it lost in July, but “Big 100 – Washington’s Classic Rock Station” falters by seven-tenths in September (4.7 – 4.0, fifth to ninth, 6+). Going into the August sweep, WBIG was down or flat three months in a row for a -.4 (4.8 – 4.7 – 4.7 – 4.4, 6+). Within 2.4 – 2.9 territory (6+) for the tenth successive sweep (2.4 – 2.5 – 2.7 – 2.8 – 2.9 – 2.6 – 2.8 – 2.6 – 2.9 – 2.8, 6+), alternative sibling WWDC “DC-101” drops from #14 to #16. An overall -.9 through five consecutive decreases (4.1 – 4.0 – 3.9 – 3.7 – 3.3 – 3.2, 6+), Entercom rhythmic CHR WPGC-FM shifts from #12 to #14.

Boston

Spoken-Word Formats – Up three-tenths (2.4 – 2.7, 6+), iHeartMedia news/talk WRKO  progresses from #14 to #13. When “AM 680 – The Voice of Boston” notched a gain of two-tenths in July, it ended three downward moves in a row for a collective loss of seven-tenths (3.0 – 2.7 – 2.4 – 2.3, 6+). Two-tenths of a share separates Beantown’s two mammoth sports talkers, as Entercom’s WEEI-FM drops one-half share (5.1 – 4.6, sixth to seventh, 6+), while Beasley Media Group-owned WBZ-FM “98.5 The Sports Hub” notches a +.4 (4.0 – 4.4, ninth to eighth, 6+). As it entered the September ratings period, Boston Red Sox flagship WEEI-FM had been an overall +1.1 in three straight positive spikes (4.0 – 4.1 – 4.2 – 5.1, 6+). A +1.0 in April cut in half a cumulative -2.0 in February and March (5.4 – 4.1 – 3.4, 6+). Meanwhile, New England Patriots’ key station WBZ-FM was a combined -1.9 in June and July (5.7 – 4.3 – 3.8, 6+). Notwithstanding that it gains one-tenth (5.3 – 5.4, 6+) following a one-half share decline in August, iHeartMedia-owned news-talk hybrid WBZ-AM “News Radio 1030” backslides from fifth to sixth. An April loss of nine-tenths ended three straight improvements that produced a cumulative +1.5 (4.9 – 5.2 – 5.4 – 6.4, 6+); 6.4 in March is its best 6+-stat since January 2017’s 6.6. Off two-tenths (5.7 – 5.5, 6+), Boston University’s news/talk WBUR falls from third to fifth. In June, WBUR returned half of May’s +.6 with a loss of three-tenths; it was +.7 in January and +1.0 in March. Surrendering the one-tenth it logged this time last month (3.1 – 3.2 – 3.1, 6+), WGBH Educational Foundation news/talk WGBH slips from #11 to #12. Prior to August’s +.1, WGBH was an overall -1.6 in three decreases in a row (4.7 – 4.1 – 3.5 – 3.1, 6+). WGBH improved by seven-tenths in January but was off two-tenths in both February and March.

Boston Music Formats – Typically solid in its home market (Worcester), Cumulus Media hot AC WXLO is up or flat for the fifth straight time for a +.9 (1.2 – 1.2 – 1.3 – 1.4 – 1.7 – 2.1, #19 to #17, 6+), reaching the two-share level in Boston (2.1, 6+) for the first time in nearly four years (2.0, November 2014). Doubling August’s +.3 with a September improvement of six-tenths (4.8 – 5.1 – 5.7, 6+), iHeartMedia’s WZLX “Classic Rock 100.7” jumps from sixth to fourth. While co-owned mainstream CHR WXKS-FM is on top for the ninth consecutive ratings period, “Kiss 108 – Boston’s #1 Hit Music Station” sputters by seven-tenths to 7.1 (6+), thus erasing the +.7 it netted in four consecutive up or flat monthlies (7.1 – 7.3 – 7.3 – 7.8 – 7.8, 6+). It exited the top spot in December 2017, after three straight months there. Its format challenger, Entercom’s WODS “103.3 Amp Radio” (#16 to #14), has a “Holiday” 2017 – September 2018 topline trending of 2.6 – 2.2 – 2.5 – 2.3 – 2.5 – 2.1 – 2.3 – 2.2 – 2.2 – 2.3 (6+). Steady at #10, hot AC cluster-mate WWBX “Mix 104.1 Boston’s Best Variety” drops one-tenth to 3.7 (6+), thus snapping at five its consecutive string of up or flat trends that yielded one-half share (3.3 – 3.4 – 3.5 – 3.5 – 3.5 – 3.8, 6+). Not only does co-owned WAAF notch a +.3 to 1.8 (6+) to suspend four consecutive sweeps without an increase that resulted in a loss of eight-tenths (2.3 – 1.8 – 1.6 – 1.5 – 1.5, 6+), “The Only Station That Really Rocks” returns to the top twenty (#21 to #20). Somewhat similarly, Northeast Broadcasting triple A WXRV, which was off six-tenths in five straight down or flat trends (2.2 – 2.1 – 2.0 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 1.6, 6+), breaks that streak by adding one-tenth to 1.7 (6+). The difference is that “92.5 The River” backslides from #20 to #21. Within 2.2 – 2.9 range (6+) for the 15th straight sweep, iHeartMedia rhythmic CHR WJMN “Jam’n 94.5” (2.5 – 2.3, -.2, 6+) dips from #13 to #14. In the market’s country tussle, Beasley Media Group’s WKLB “Country 102.5” is off for the third successive sweep for a -.5 (4.7 – 4.5 – 4.3 – 4.2, eighth to ninth, 6+), while iHeartMedia-owned WBWL “101.7 The Bull – Boston’s New Hit Country,” which had been in a March through August down/up sequence (2.2 – 2.1 – 2.2 – 2.1 – 2.5 – 2.3, 6+), drops two-tenths to 2.1 (#15 to #17, 6+).

Miami

English-Language, Spoken-Word Formats – By regaining the one-tenth it squandered in August, iHeartMedia news/talk WIOD maintains a May through September topline pattern of 1.9 – 2.0 – 2.0 – 1.9 – 2.0 (6+); News Radio 620 – Miami’s News, Traffic, & Weather Station” carries on at #20. WIOD’s one-half share loss in May halted seven straight positive or flat trends that netted an overall nine-tenths (1.5 – 1.5 – 1.5 – 1.7 – 1.8 – 2.1 – 2.4 – 2.4, 6+). Included in a five-way logjam at #25 (up from #27 in August) is Entercom’s WQAM, whose May through September trending is .9 – .8 – .9 – .8 – .9 (6+). A May gain of two-tenths by “Sports Radio 560” suspended five sweeps in succession without an increase for a collective -.8 (1.5 – 1.2 – .8 – .8 – .8 – .7, 6+). Cluster-mate WAXY “Sports Talk 790 The Ticket” is in that scrum at #25 as well, but is up three tenths (to .9, #28 to #25, 6+), thus applying the brakes to seven straight (mostly) flat or down trends that accounted for a loss of three-tenths (.9 – .9 – .9 – .9 – .9 – .8 – .7 – .6, 6+). Doubling August’s one-tenth increase with a +.2 in September (1.8 – 1.9 – 2.1, 6+), Dade County School Board news/talk WLRN inches up from #20 to #19. On the strength of a +1.1, Moody Bible Institute religious teaching WRMB “Moody Radio South Florida” nearly triples its 6+-share (.6 – 1.7,  #22, 6+).

Miami Music Formats – A gain of seven-tenths to 4.6 (tenth to sixth, 6+) by iHeartMedia Spanish contemporary WZTU “Tu 94.9 – Donde Viven Tus Hits” nearly erases its -.8 through three downward moves in succession (4.7 – 4.6 – 4.3 – 3.9, 6+). Tacking on four-tenths to August’s one-half share gain (6.9 – 7.4 – 7.8, 6+), Cox Media Group adult contemporary WFEZ “Easy 93.1” sets the pace for the fourth month in a row. “Easy” advanced from second to first in June, but after three straight months without a decrease for an overall gain of eight-tenths (6.7 – 7.3 – 7.3 – 7.5, 6+), it faltered by six-tenths in July. Prior to April, WFEZ had been within 6.2 – 6.8 range (6+) in each of the previous 12 sweeps. In three straight monthlies without an increase, Entercom’s similarly-formatted WLYF was a cumulative -1.2 (6.7 – 6.4 – 5.8 – 5.5, 6+); however, “101.5 Lite FM” is a collective +.5 in August and September (5.5 – 5.8 – 6.0, 6+). Nonetheless, it backslides from a fourth-place tie to fifth. July 2018’s 5.5 is the lowest 6+-share for “Lite” since 5.2 in July 2017. A collective -1.4 in three straight downturns (7.5 – 7.1 – 6.8 – 6.1, 6+), Cox Media Group urban AC WHQT “Hot 105” picks up one-tenth to 6.2 (6+) and is unchanged at #3. Entercom rhythmic CHR WPOW “Power 96” is up two-tenths to 2.7 (#17 to #16, 6+), curtailing three consecutive down or flat trends that resulted in a loss of four-tenths (2.9 – 2.9 – 2.7 – 2.5, 6+). Fully erasing August’s +.5 with a -.5 in September (3.5 – 4.0 – 3.5), Univision Radio-owned Spanish tropical WRTO slips from ninth to tenth. In July, “Mix 98.3” surrendered three-tenths, thus snapping at four a consecutive string of increases that yielded nine-tenths (2.9 – 3.1 – 3.5 – 3.6 – 3.8, 6+). Sputtering by one-half share as well (2.5, #14 to #17, 6+) is Spanish Broadcasting System Spanish contemporary WRMA “Ritmo 95.7,” which was +.7 in three up or flat months in a row (2.3 – 2.6 – 3.0 – 3.0, 6+). Slipping from sixth to seventh, Cox Media Group urban contemporary WEDR “99 Jamz” has a March – September (6+) topline of 4.7 – 4.6 – 4.7 – 4.5 – 4.7 – 4.6 – 4.4. Down a combined -1.1 in four straight sweeps without an increase (3.3 – 3.0 – 2.5 – 2.5 – 2.2, 6+), iHeartMedia rhythmic hot AC WMIA “93.9 MIA – Variety From The ‘80s, ‘90s, & Today” moves from #17 to #18. The tie at #11 between the market’s two mainstream CHRs is broken as iHeartMedia-owned WHYI “Y-100 Miami’s #1 Hit Music Station” is off one-tenth (#12), while Cox Media Group’s WFLC “Hits 97.3” sputters by three-tenths (#14). “Y-100” is trending 3.2 – 3.2 – 3.2 – 3.1 – 3.3 – 3.3 – 3.2 (March – September, 6+), while “Hits 97.3” is down for the third sweep in a row (3.7 – 3.6 – 3.3 – 3.0, 6+) for an overall loss of seven-tenths. Down or flat nine consecutive reports for a collective -1.4 (4.5 – 4.5 – 4.2 – 4.0 – 3.5 – 3.5 – 3.5 – 3.4 – 3.1 – 3.1, 6+), WFLC was +.6 in June. Locked on 4.0 (6+) in January and February, “Y-100” eroded by eight-tenths in March. The two rivals were separated by one-tenth in April and May.

Detroit

Spoken-Word Formats – In back-to-back sweeps, Cumulus Media’s WJR “News Talk 760” is a combined +.5 (3.6 – 3.8 – 4.1, flat at #11, 6+). Its +.2 in August, suspended three straight negative trends that accounted for a loss of seven-tenths (4.3 – 4.2 – 3.7 – 3.6, 6+). Off seven-tenths in three downward moves in a row (5.3 – 5.6 – 4.7 – 4.6, 6+), Entercom sports talk WXYT-FM “97.1 The Ticket” answers with a +.9 to 5.5 (ninth to sixth, 6+). A combined -.6 in February and March, the Detroit Tigers flagship was up nine-tenths in April. Adding two-tenths to August’s robust +.8 (5.5 – 6.3 – 6.5, 6+), co-owned WWJ “News Radio 950” (unchanged at #3) registers its best 6+-performance since its 6.5 in March. Following four up or flat trends in succession for a collective +1.0, WWJ was -.8 in April; and was then frozen on 5.8 (6+) in May and June. Following eight straight survey periods without an increase for a collective -.3 (1.9 – 1.9 – 1.9 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 1.7 – 1.7 – 1.6, 6+), Michigan Public Media news/talk WUOM picks up one-tenth to 1.7 (#19 to #18, 6+). Steady at #22, Wayne State University news/talk WDET adds one-tenth for the third consecutive sweep (.6 – .7 – .8 – .9, 6+).

Detroit Music Formats – Powered by a +1.3, more than quadrupling August’s 6+ AQH share (.4 – 1.7, 6+), Radio One gospel WDMK-HD2 “Detroit Praise Network” checks in at #18. Progressing by seven-tenths each are iHeartMedia mainstream CHR and urban AC cluster-mates WKQI “Channel 95.5 – Detroit’s #1 Hit Music Station” (tenth to eighth, 6+) and WMXD “Mix 92.3” (5.2 – 5.9, sixth to fourth, 6+). An overall -.9 in six successive sweeps without an increase (4.8 – 4.6 – 4.3 – 4.2 – 4.1 – 4.1 – 3.9, 6+), “Channel 95.5″ is now a collective +1.3 in August and September (3.9 – 4.5 – 5.2, 6+). The last time WKQI reached the five-share level (6+) was in December 2017 (5.0). Meanwhile, Entercom’s similarly-programmed WDZH, which was a combined +.4 in three straight up or flat moves (2.4 – 2.7 – 2.8 – 2.8, 6+), falters by four-tenths to 2.4 (#15 to #16, 6+). Just before that streak, “98.7 Amp Radio” suspended three straight setbacks of one-tenth each (2.7 – 2.6 – 2.5 – 2.4, 6+). Despite dropping one-tenth (7.6 – 7.5, 6+), Entercom classic hits-oldies WOMC “104.3 Detroit’s Greatest Hits” advances from second to first. It dislodges Beasley Media Group’s WCSX “94.7 – Detroit’s Classic Rock” (7.9 – 7.4, -.5, 6+), which had been #1 the past four months; it slips to #2. WCSX was +.6 in July but is now a combined -.9 in August and September. A loss of two-tenths in June ended five straight positive spikes that generated a +2.5 (5.4 – 5.9 – 6.3 – 6.7 – 7.6 – 7.9, 6+). Co-owned WRIF “Everything That Rocks” is a collective -1.3 in three consecutive negative moves (5.6 – 5.3 – 4.8 – 4.3, eighth to tenth, 6+). This comes immediately after four consecutive improvements that led to a combined +1.5 (4.4 – 4.6 – 4.7 – 5.5 – 5.9, 6+). June’s 5.9 is its strongest 6+-stat since January 2017 (5.9, as well). Forfeiting the three-tenths it picked up in August (5.5 – 5.8 – 5.5, 6+), Entercom’s WYCD segues from fourth to sixth. Three down or flat moves in succession by “99.5 Detroit’s Best Country” accounted for a cumulative loss of one-half share but that was fully erased in June with a +.5. While unchanged at #17, Cumulus Media’s similarly-programmed WDRQ “93.1 Nash FM” is -1.0 in four consecutive decreases (3.0 – 2.8 – 2.5 – 2.3 – 2.0, 6+). When “Nash FM” slipped by two-tenths in June, it halted five consecutive up or flat moves that netted nine-tenths (2.1 – 2.7 – 2.8 – 2.8 – 2.8 – 3.0, 6+).

Seattle

Spoken-Word Formats – On the heels of August’s +.8 to 5.9 (6+), Bonneville news/talk KIRO-FM tacks on two-tenths (6.1, 6+) and carries on in the runner-up slot. Prior to its -.7 in June, KIRO-FM had an October 2017 – June 2018 6+-topline of 5.7 – 6.0 – 5.7 – 5.7 – 5.4 – 5.7 – 5.6 – 5.5 – 5.8 – 5.8. Within 2.0 – 2.4 range for the sixth month in a row (2.0 – 2.0 – 2.1 – 2.4 – 2.1 – 2.3, 6+), co-owned KTTH “Conservative Talk Radio” returns to the top twenty (#22 to #20). The (6+) topline February – September trending for Sinclair Broadcast Group-owned KVI “Talk Radio 570” (flat at #24) is a remarkably consistent 1.0 – 1.0 – 1.1 – 1.0 – 1.1 – 1.1 – 1.1 – 1.1. Even though it is off eight-tenths via three straight down or flat trends (4.2 – 3.5 – 3.4 – 3.4, 6+), Bonneville sports talk KIRO-AM “ESPN 710” moves up from #14 to #13. As a result of four positive spikes in succession (2.3 – 2.9 – 3.6 – 4.1 – 4.2, 6+), the Seattle Mariners flagship was a combined +1.9. Prior to May, the last time KIRO-AM reached the four-share level (6+) was in October 2015 (4.3). Locked on .6 (6+) in May and June, iHeartMedia-owned KJR-AM “Seattle’s Sports Radio 950” follows in July through September with a .5 – .7 – .9, #28 to #26, 6+). Sinclair Broadcast Group’s all-news KOMO gains two-tenths in back-to-back sweeps (2.3 – 2.5 – 2.7, 6+) and continues at #19. Not only is Northwest Public Radio news/talk KUOW a collective +.8 in three up or flat trends in succession (5.4 – 5.4 – 5.9 – 6.2, 6+), it proceeds from #2 to #1 with its highest 6+-share (6.2) since April’s 6.5. August’s increase concluded three straight down or flat sweeps that accounted for an overall -1.1 (6.5 – 6.0 – 5.4 – 5.4, 6+). KUOW took over the runner-up slot in May after a one-month stay at #1. On top for four straight months before dropping to second in December, KUOW was +1.5 in January (6.4 – 7.9, 6+) as it returned to #1.

Seattle Music Formats – Within 2.4 – 2.8 range (6+) the past six survey periods (2.8 – 2.8 – 2.6 – 2.5 – 2.4 – 2.5, 6+), Crista Ministries contemporary Christian KCMS-FM “Spirit 105.3” erupts with a +1.0 to 3.5 (#19 to #12), its strongest 6+-performance since December 2017 (3.5, as well). The market’s 6+ hot AC share swells by +1.3, virtually equally divided between Sinclair Broadcast Group’s KPLZ “Star 101.5” (4.0 – 4.7, +.7, eighth to seventh, 6+) and iHeartMedia-owned KBKS “106.1 Kiss FM Seattle’s New Hit Music” (2.6 – 3.2, +.6, #18 to #16, 6+). Conversely, country’s 6+-share here shrinks by six-tenths, as Entercom’s KKWF “100.7 The Wolf” forfeits two-tenths (4.0 – 3.8, eighth to tenth, 6+), while Hubbard’s KNUC “98.9 The Bull” (formerly KVRQ) sputters by four-tenths (3.6 – 3.2, #13 to #16, 6+). By gaining one-tenth in August, “The Wolf” concluded a streak that dated back to October 2017 in which KKWF alternated an up sweep with a down one (3.1 – 2.9 – 3.4 – 2.9 – 3.3 – 2.9 – 3.6 – 3.3 – 3.6 – 3.4 – 3.9, 6+). “The Bull” bounced back from July’s -.4 with an August +.6. Entering the July sweep, “The Bull” more than tripled (+2.4) its 6+-stat as the result of six straight survey periods without a loss (1.0 – 1.5 – 1.5 – 1.6 – 2.0 – 2.8 – 3.4, 6+). These two country stations were tied at #14 in June. For the first time since Entercom’s KSWD “The Sound” (3.8 – 4.2, +.4, #11 to #8, 6+) became an adult contemporary outlet in early-December 2017, it overtakes the longtime incumbent – Hubbard’s KRWM “Warm 106.9” (seventh to ninth, 6+). In August, “The Sound” posted a one-half share increase to halt four straight down or flat trends that resulted in a loss of eight-tenths (4.1 – 3.5 – 3.3 – 3.3 – 3.3, 6+). “Warm” is currently -1.0 in three successive setbacks (5.0 – 4.3 – 4.1 – 4.0, 6+). Prior to a +.3 in June, KRWM was -7.1 (or down roughly 60%) in five consecutive down or flat sweeps (11.8 – 5.5 – 4.9 – 4.9 – 4.8 – 4.7, 6+). Its 11.8 in “Holiday” 2017 was the AC station’s strongest 6+-stat since 13.4 in “Holiday” 2015; “Warm” was #1 in December and “Holiday” 2017. The rollercoaster ride continues for co-owned CHR KQMV “MOViN 92.5,” which was +1.7 in July (6.1 – 7.8, 6+); -1.4 in August; and now -.6 in September to 5.8, its lowest 6+-showing since April’s 5.6. Having finished first in June, July, and August, KQMV drops to third. A decline of seven-tenths takes Classic Radio’s KING “98.1 Listener-Supported Classical Music” to 1.7 (#21 to #22), its softest 6+-stat since 1.6 in November 2017. Dropping one-half share each are iHeartMedia adult hits KJAQ “96.5 Jack FM Playing What We Want” (3.9 – 3.4, #10 to #13, 6+) and Entercom rhythmic hot AC KHTP “Hot 103.7,” which is a collective -1.1 in four straight sweeps without an increase (3.4 – 2.8 – 2.8 – 2.8 – 2.3, #17 to #20, 6+).

Phoenix

Spoken-Word Formats – Continuing at #11, Bonneville news/talk KTAR-FM is a collective +.5 in three upticks in a row (3.1 – 3.2 – 3.3 – 3.6, 6+). KTAR-FM was up three-tenths in April but was then a combined -.5 in May and June. Following four straight gains that netted eight-tenths (2.1 – 2.5 – 2.7 – 2.8 – 2.9, 6+), iHeartMedia’s KFYI “News Talk 550” falters by four-tenths to 2.5 (#15 to #17, 6+). When KFYI lost one-tenth in March, it ended at three its successive string of upticks that netted nine-tenths (1.5 – 1.6 – 2.1 – 2.4, 6+). A September increase of one-half share to 3.1 (#17 to #13, 6+) by Bonneville sports talk KMVP-FM “98.7 Arizona Sports” halts its May through August topline of 2.6 – 2.5 – 2.5 – 2.6 (6+). It is the first time the Arizona Diamondbacks flagship reaches the three-share level (6+) since October 2017’s 3.0. From January through May, it was a collective +1.1 in three straight positive spikes (1.5 – 1.6 – 2.3 – 2.6, 6+); KMVP-FM was then frozen on 2.5 (6+) in June and July. Regaining one-tenth of August’s -.3 (3.0 – 2.7 – 2.8, 6+), Maricopa County Community College news/talk KJZZ bumps up from #16 to #15. Its July increase of six-tenths halted three consecutive negative moves that accounted for a combined -1.5 (3.9 – 3.6 – 2.7 – 2.4, 6+).

Phoenix Music Formats – Major ups/downs continue for Univision Radio Spanish adult hits KOMR “Amor 106.3,” which was +.5 in June and July (1.6 – 1.9 – 2.1, 6+); -.8 in August; and now +.5 in September (1.3 – 1.8, #26 to #22, 6+). Improving by one-half share as well is iHeartMedia CHR KZZP “104.7 Kiss FM” (5.5, seventh to fifth, 6+), which had been -1.0 in three straight down or flat trends (6.0 – 5.3 – 5.0 – 5.0, 6+). The only station in the 12 PPM-markets noted here posting an August 2018 – September 2018 decrease of at least one full-share is KZZP’s adult contemporary cluster-mate KESZ (7.3 – 6.1, -1.2, 6+). Not only is this the fourth consecutive decline for KESZ for an overall -2.9 (9.0 – 8.7 – 7.5 – 7.3 – 6.1, 6+), it relocates to #2 after spending the last ten reports at #1. KESZ was up seven-tenths in April and then logged a +1.7 in May; 16.4 in “Holiday” 2017 was its strongest 6+-showing since 16.5 in “Holiday” 2016. Taking over at #1 is Hubbard’s KSLX “Classic Rock 100.7,” which levels out at 6.3 (6+), after August’s +.8. As the result of July’s -1.1 to 5.5 (6+), KSLX erased in its entirety the +1.1 it netted in six straight sweeps without a loss (5.5 – 5.8 – 6.0 – 6.0 – 6.1 – 6.2 – 6.6, 6+). Moreover, “Classic Rock 100.7,” which occupied the runner-up slot eight consecutive ratings periods, shifted to fifth. An overall +.9 in three straight increases (2.1 – 2.2 – 2.5 – 3.0, 6+), Univision Radio regional Mexican KHOT “Que Buena 105.9” relinquishes two-thirds of that collective increase (2.4, -.6, #14 to #18, 6+). In three straight positive spikes (3.5 – 4.3 – 5.9 – 6.2, 6+), iHeartMedia adult hits KYOT  managed to rack up a collective +2.7; however, “95.5 The Mountain – We Play Everything” is off three-tenths in September to 5.9 (6+) and continues in third-place. For perspective, “The Mountain” finished tenth in May. Within 5.2 – 5.9 range (6+) each month this calendar year (5.2 – 5.4 – 5.3 – 5.6 – 5.6 – 5.5 – 5.6 – 5.7 – 5.9, 6+), iHeartMedia’s KNIX “102.5 Today’s Best Country & All-Time Favorites” moves from fourth to third, while its format challenger – Entercom’s KMLE “Country @ 107.9” – returns half of August’s +.4 (4.2 – 4.0, -.2, 6+) and remains at #9. A cumulative -2.1 (or roughly -50%) in six successive negative trends (4.1 – 4.0 – 3.2 – 2.5 – 2.3 – 2.2 – 2.0, 6+), Farmworker Educational Radio regional Mexican KNAI “101.9 Campesina” slips from a three-way tie at #18 to #19.

Minneapolis

Spoken-Word Formats – Recording a 4.4 (6+) for the third straight month, Entercom-owned WCCO drops out of the top ten (#9 to #11). Prior to August, the four previous fluctuations for “News Radio 830” were +.8 (April); -.8 (May); -.8  (June); and +.5 (July). The Minnesota Twins flagship was locked on 4.4 (6+) in December 2017 and “Holiday” 2017 and then on 5.0 (6+) in January 2018 and February. A loss of three-tenths (3.7 – 3.4, 6+) drops iHeartMedia’s KTLK Twin Cities News Talk AM 1130” from #13 to #14. In advance of the June sweep, KTLK was +1.4 in five successive sweeps without a loss (2.5 – 3.4 – 3.4 – 3.5 – 3.8 – 3.9, 6+). Flat at #16, Hubbard news/talk KTMY “My Talk 107.1” surrenders two-tenths (2.7 – 2.5, 6+). An August gain of three-tenths halted three straight down or flat moves that accounted for an overall loss of seven-tenths (3.1 – 2.7 – 2.7 – 2.4, 6+). Its March decrease of three-tenths stopped four straight up or flat trends that generated a +1.2 (2.1 – 2.1 – 2.3 – 2.7 – 3.3, 6+). A collective -2.1 via four decreases in a row (5.8 – 5.5 – 4.7 – 4.0 – 3.7, 6+), iHeartMedia-owned KFXN “Sports Radio 100.3 K-Fan” answers with a +1.2 in August and September (3.7 – 3.8 – 4.9, 6+) and returns to the top ten (#12 to #9). “K-Fan” was -1.5 in February. Trending 1.0 – .9 – .9 – 1.0 – .8 – 1.0 – 1.0 – .8 (February through September, 6+), Hubbard sports talk KSTP-AM “ESPN 1500” slips from #21 to #22. Following four negative moves in a row for a collective -2.2 (5.9 – 5.4 – 4.7 – 4.4 – 3.7, 6+), Minnesota Public Radio news/talk KNOW is +.8 in August and September (3.7 – 4.4 – 4.5, ninth to tenth, 6+). Its recent fluctuations include -.7 (February); +.7 (March); -.5 (April) +.7 (May) -.7 (July); and +.7 (August).

Minneapolis Music Formats – Not only does its increase of nine-tenths to 8.0 (6+) suspend three straight negative moves that generated a -.6 (7.7 – 7.3 – 7.2 – 7.1, 6+), iHeartMedia classic hits-oldies KQQL “Kool 108 – Minnesota’s Greatest Hits” advances from second to first with its strongest 6+-showing since “Holiday” 2017’s 14.2. “Kool 108” succeeds co-owned CHR KDWB “101.3 The Twin Cities’ #1 Hit Music Station” (7.8 – 7.2, -.6, first to third, 6+), which occupied the top spot for just one month. August’s 7.8 is its highest 6+-share since September 2016’s 8.1. Prior to August 2018, the last time KDWB claimed the top spot was August 2017. Locked on 1.5 (6+) in May and June and then on 1.6 (6+) in July and August, Minneapolis Public Schools’ KBEM breaks out a +.5 to 2.1 (steady at #19, 6+), the first time “88 FM – The Twin Cities’ Voice For Jazz, Roots Music & Education” reaches the two-share level (6+) since March (2.0). Hubbard hot AC KSTP-FM “KS-95,” which held the lead position seven straight sweeps before being ousted in August, is up three-tenths to 7.4 (steady at #2, 6+), thus curtailing four straight downward trends that accounted for a -1.5 (8.6 – 7.9 – 7.8 – 7.5 – 7.1, 6+). Its -.7 in May suspended four successive progressive moves that netted a +2.8 (5.8 – 7.6 – 8.2 – 8.3 – 8.6, 6+). Following four consecutive increases for a cumulative +1.0 (3.2 – 3.3 – 3.5 – 3.8 – 4.2, 6+), iHeartMedia’s similarly-programmed KTCZ “The Cities” dropped six-tenths in August and is flat in September (at 3.6, #14 to #13, 6+). After gaining four-tenths in August, iHeartMedia’s KEEY “K-102 Minnesota’s Country Station” surrenders twice that margin in September (6.0 – 5.2, -.8, fourth to sixth, 6+). At the same time, Entercom’s KMNB “Minneapolis Country Music – Buz’n @ 102.9” is down a collective two-tenths in three consecutive down or flat reports (4.2 – 4.2 – 4.0 – 4.0, #11 to #12, 6+). Unchanged in fifth place, Cumulus Media-owned KQRS is off one-half share (5.8 – 5.3, 6+). Following five consecutive months without an increase for a cumulative -.7 (6.2 – 6.1 – 5.8 – 5.7 – 5.7 – 5.5, 6+), “Minnesota’s Classic Rock” posted a +.3 in August.

San Diego

Spoken-Word Formats – Locked on 5.1 (6+) in June and July, iHeartMedia news/talk KOGO regresses by seven-tenths in August and September (5.1 – 4.5 – 4.4, 6+), yet actually improves from ninth to seventh. “News Radio 600” was +.8 (January); -.7 (February); +.8 (March); +.6 (May); and -.6 (August). October 2017’s 7.2 is KOGO’s highest 6+-share in its PPM-history. Flat at #22, Tegna news/talk KFMB-AM “AM 760” is down one-tenth in back-to-back sweeps (1.8 – 1.7 – 1.6, 6+). Its June increase of one-tenth interrupted three straight negative moves that accounted for a loss of seven-tenths (2.2 – 2.1 – 1.8 – 1.5, 6+). It is two-tenths ahead of iHeartMedia Los Angeles news/talk KFI “AM 640” (1.8 – 1.4, -.4, #22 to #23, 6+). Finishing one after another  are Interamericana de Radio’s XPRS-AM “The Mighty 1090” (1.0 – .9, -.1, #24 to #25, 6+); Entercom-owned/San Diego Padres flagship KWFN “97.3 The Fan” (.8 – .9, +.1, even at #25, 6+); and iHeartMedia’s KLSD “Fox Sports 1360 San Diego’s Sports Station” (.5 – .8, +.3, level at #27, 6+). San Diego State University-owned news/talk KPBS shifted from first to second in April; returned to #1 in May; dropped from first to third in June; slipped from third to fourth to July; returned to first in August; and segues from first to second to September (6.5 – 6.2, -.3, 6+). KPBS was up seven-tenths in August.

San Diego Music Formats – Boasting a +1.1 (2.6 – 3.7, 6+), Educational Media Foundation contemporary Christian KLVJ zooms from #16 to #10 as San Diego’s version of “Positive & Encouraging K-Love” reaches the three-share threshold (6+, 3.7) for the first time since March (3.1). Both of the market’s rockers – Tegna’s KFMB-FM “100.7 KFM BFM” (3.6, #12 to #11, 6+) and iHeartMedia’s KIOZ “Rock 105.3” (2.8, #20 to #16, 6+) – improve by six-tenths. In August, KFMB-FM sputtered by one-half share to 3.0, its lowest 6+-showing since March (2.9). Meanwhile, “Rock 105.3” was a collective -.6 in four successive down or flat sweeps (2.8 – 2.6 – 2.6 – 2.4 – 2.2, 6+). Gaining one-half share each are Local Media San Diego-operated XHTZ “Z-90.3 Today’s Hit Music” (3.6, #10 to #11, 6+) and Univision Radio Spanish contemporary KLQV “Amor 102.9” (2.5 – 3.0, #18 to #14, 6+). CHR “Z-90.3” was -1.4 via three decreases in a row (4.5 – 3.9 – 3.2 – 3.1, 6+), while “Amor 102.9” recorded a 2.7 (6+) in March, April, May, and June. A collective +2.8 through seven consecutive ratings periods without a loss (3.5 – 4.2 – 4.2 – 4.5 – 4.7 – 4.8 – 6.3 – 6.3, 6+), iHeartMedia-owned CHR KHTS “Channel 93.3 – San Diego’s #1 Hit Music Station” storms from second to first. A collective +1.6 in July and August (3.7 – 4.7 – 5.3, 6+), Univision Radio regional Mexican KLNV surrenders nine-tenths in September (5.3 – 4.4, 6+) slipping from sixth to seventh. In August, “Que Buena 106.5” crossed the five-share level 6+ (5.3) for the first time since “Holiday” 2017’s 5.1. Uni Radio’s similarly-formatted XHTY “Invasora 99.7,” which was up eight-tenths in five consecutive monthlies without a loss (2.3 – 2.3 – 2.4 – 2.4 – 2.4 – 3.1, 6+), drops two-tenths to 2.9 (#10 to #15, 6+). In four downward moves in a row (4.0 – 3.4 – 3.3 – 2.4 – 2.1, #19 to #20, 6+), Imagen Spanish contemporary XLTN “104.5 Radio Latina” is a collective -1.9 (approximately -50%).

Denver

Spoken-Word Formats – With a May through September topline of 5.0 – 5.4 – 5.3 – 5.0 – 5.1 (6+), iHeartMedia news/talk KOA advances from sixth to fourth. Following January’s one-half share loss, “Colorado’s News, Traffic, & Weather Station” picked up one-tenth in consecutive sweeps (4.2 – 4.3 – 4.4, 6+) and posted a +1.4 in April to zoom from ninth to first, but the flagship of the Colorado Rockies exited the top spot in May after a one-month run. In an up/down pattern, iHeartMedia news/talk KHOW was +.3 (June); -.2 (July); +.1 (August); and now -.4 in September (2.1 – 1.7, 6+) as “Talk Radio 630” departs the top twenty (#19 to #21). Immediately before the June sweep, KHOW had been down or flat four sweeps in a row for an overall setback of four-tenths (2.3 – 2.3 – 2.1 – 2.0 -1.9, 6+). Adding nine-tenths to August’s +.4 (2.5 – 2.9 – 3.8, 6+), Bonneville-owned KKFN “Sports Radio 104.3 The Fan” proceeds from #14 to #12 with its best 6+-stat (3.8) since December 2017’s 4.2. “The Fan” faltered by one-half share in June and July (3.5 – 3.0 – 2.5, 6+), posting its lowest 6+-stat (2.5) since July 2017’s 2.3. Denver’s “Fan” was +1.0 in March. On the heels of hauling out a +1.1 (5.2 – 6.3, 6+), Colorado Public Radio news/talk KCFR tacks on another one-tenth (to 6.4, 6+), which is sufficient to progress from second to first. It was a brief one-month stay at #1 (in May) for KCFR, which lost seven-tenths in June. In addition to being on top in May, KCFR was #1 in January and March. After dropping one-tenth in back-to-back sweeps (1.0 – .9, -.8, 6+), Community Radio for Northern California news/talk KUNC registers a one-half share increase to 1.3 (#26 to #23, 6+). Prior to June’s 1.0 (6+), KUNC recorded a .7 (6+) in each of the three previous sweeps.

Denver Music Formats – The market’s (6+) hot AC share balloons by +1.2, which is nearly equally divided between KSE Radio Ventures’ KIMN (3.9 – 4.6, +.7, tenth to ninth, 6+) and Entercom’s KALC “Alice 105.9” (4.3, +.5, #11 to #10, 6+). The (6+) April – May – June – July – August stats for “Alice” were 4.1 – 3.9 – 3.9 – 4.1 – 3.8. Having notched a 2.7 (6+) in three of the last six sweeps (2.7 – 2.8 – 2.8 – 2.7 – 2.5 – 2.7 (6+), Entravision Communications Spanish adult hits KJMN “La Suavecita 107.1” breaks out a +.7 to 3.4 (#15 to #13, 6+). A gain of six-tenths to 2.3, the best 6+-stat for Colorado Public Radio’s KVOD since “Holiday” 2017’s 2.4, ends its April – August 1.7 – 2.2 – 1.7 – 1.5 – 1.7 (6+) trending and takes the classical station to #19. Since debuting in print in February, iHeartMedia’s KWBL “106.7 The Bull – Colorado’s New Country” (#18 to #16) is trending 2.3 – 2.4 – 2.7 – 3.0 – 2.7 – 2.5 – 2.3 – 2.8. Immediately after registering three consecutive up or flat trends that yielded a +1.0 (4.6 – 5.1 – 5.1 – 5.6, 6+), KSE Radio Ventures classic hits-oldies KXKL followed with a combined -1.1 in June, July, and August (5.6 – 5.0 – 4.5 – 4.5, 6+). In September, “Kool 105 – Denver’s Greatest Hits” gains two-tenths to 4.7 (6+) and continues in eighth-place. May’s 5.6 is its most potent 6+-stat since December 2016’s 5.7. On the other hand, August’s 4.5 is its softest since “Holiday” 2017’s 3.8. Two streaks come to an end for Entercom classic rocker KQMT: It drops six-tenths to 6.0 (6+), thus snapping its consecutive string of three positive spikes that netted a +1.7 (4.9 – 6.1 – 6.5 – 6.6, 6+) – and – after being #1 the past three months – “99.5 The Mountain – A Mountain of Classics” shifts to the runner-up slot. Up or flat five months in a row for a collective +1.4 (4.6 – 4.7 – 5.3 – 5.3 – 5.6 – 6.0, 6+), Bonneville adult contemporary KOSI “101.1 Real-Music-Variety” is now -1.0 in August and September (6.0 – 5.8 – 5.0, fourth to sixth, 6+). Whereas July’s 6.0 is the strongest 6+-showing for KOSI since Holiday’s 2017’s 11.5, September’s 5.0 is its lowest since March (4.7). Erasing in full the one-half share increase it recorded in August (1.5 – 2.0 – 1.5, 6+), iHeartMedia’s KBPI “107.9 Rocks The Rockies” departs the top twenty (#20 to #22). Prior to August, KBPI posted a 1.5 (6+) in four of the previous six sweeps (1.5 – 1.6 – 1.5 – 1.5 – 1.8 – 1.5, 6+), Also forfeiting one-half share is Entercom rhythmic CHR KQKS “KS-107.5” (3.8 – 3.3, #11 to #15, 6+).

Tampa

Spoken-Word Formats – Returning half of August’s +.6 (4.2 – 3.9, -.3, 6+), iHeartMedia news/talk WFLA “970 Tampa Bay’s News Radio” exits the top ten (#10 to #11). In January and February, WFLA was +.5 (2.7 – 3.2 – 3.7, 6+); -.5 in March (3.7 – 3.2, 6+); +.8 in April (3.2 – 4.0, 6+); +.4 in May (4.0 – 4.4, 6+); -.7 in July; and +.6 in August (3.6 – 4.2, 6+). Without a loss the last four sweeps for a +.8 (2.7 – 2.7 – 2.9 – 3.1 – 3.5, 6+), Cox Media Group news/talk WHPT “102.5 The Bone – Real, Raw, Radio” falters by two-tenths to 3.3 (#13 to #14, 6+). A one-tenth setback in April ended three straight increases that produced a gain of one-half share (2.3 – 2.6 – 2.7 – 2.8, 6+), while a January improvement of three-tenths curtailed four straight down or flat trends for a collective -1.1 (3.4 – 3.4 – 3.1 – 2.8 – 2.3, 6+). Conversely, with a gain of four-tenths to 2.5 (#19 to #18, 6+), iHeartMedia-owned WDAE “620 Tampa Bay’s Sports Radio” pulls the plug on four consecutive down or flat reports that led to a loss of two-tenths (2.3 – 2.3 – 2.2 – 2.2 – 2.1, 6+). Beginning with the “Holiday” 2017 report, the Tampa Bay Rays flagship was up or flat for the next five survey periods for a +.8 (1.5 – 1.6 – 1.6 – 1.8 – 2.3 – 2.3, 6+). The March – September topline trending for University of South Florida news/talk WUSF (flat at #20) is 1.9 – 1.9 – 1.7 – 1.9 – 1.7 – 1.4 – 1.6 (6+). When WUSF added two-tenths in June, it halted six successive ratings periods without an increase that accounted for a collective -1.6 (3.3 – 3.0 – 2.8 – 2.8 – 1.9 – 1.9 – 1.7, 6+).

Tampa Music Formats – In addition to dialing up a +.6 to 4.2 (6+) which halts five straight sweeps without an increase for a collective -1.3 (4.9 – 3.9 – 3.9 – 3.8 – 3.6 – 3.6, 6+), iHeartMedia urban contemporary WBTP “95.7 The Beat” cracks the top ten (#12 to #8). Albeit down three-tenths (8.9 – 8.6, 6+), Cox Media Group-owned adult contemporary WDUV “Lite Favorites” is in the driver’s seat for the 73rd successive ratings period. After four straight up or flat trends that netted seven-tenths (8.4 – 8.9 -9.0 – 9.0 – 9.1, 6+), WDUV slipped three-tenths in July but picked up one-tenth in August. “Lite Favorites” was -3.5 in January and February (11.9 – 8.8 – 8.4, 6+), following a +1.5 in “Holiday” 2017 (10.4 – 11.9, 6+). A September decrease of eight-tenths by  classic hits-oldies sibling WXGL “107.3 The Eagle” completely wipes away August’s +.7 (6.4 – 7.1 – 6.3, 6+). In August, “The Eagle” registered its highest 6+-stat since July 2017 (7.1, as well). Similarly, iHeartMedia-owned WXTB “98 Rock” erases August’s one-half share increase with a September decrease of six-tenths (3.8 – 4.3 – 3.7, 6+) and drifts from the top ten (#9 to #12). Four straight up or flat trends by “98 Rock” netted eight-tenths (3.9 – 4.0 – 4.0 – 4.6 – 4.7, 6+), but it was down nine-tenths in July; June’s 4.7 is its strongest 6+-showing since October 2017 (4.7, as well). Whereas iHeartMedia-owned CHR WFLZ “93.3 FLZ – Tampa Bay’s #1 Hit Music Channel” was up one-half share in August, Cox Media Group’s similarly-formatted WPOI “Hot 101.5” was down by that same margin. WFLZ is flat at 4.1 (#11 to #10, 6+) and “Hot” picks up three-tenths (3.4 – 3.7, #14 to #12, 6+).

Baltimore

Spoken-Word Formats – A loss of one-half share (3.1 – 2.6, #11 to #12, 6+) takes independent news/talk WCBM “680 Stimulating Talk – Breaking News” to its lowest 6+-showing (2.6) since “Holiday” 2017’s 2.5. Steady at #14, Hearst Television news/talker WBAL gains one-tenth to 2.5 (6+), thus applying the brakes to five straight sweeps without an increase that accounted for a collective -.9 (3.3 – 2.8 – 2.8 – 2.8 – 2.5 – 2.4, 6+). Up or flat the past three sweeps for a +.7 (4.0 – 4.3 – 4.7 – 4.7, 6+), Entercom sports talk WJZ-FM “105.7 The Fan” carries on at #9. Baltimore’s “Fan” was +.6 (January); -.6 (February); +1.0 (April); and a combined -1.0 in May and June (5.0 – 4.5 – 4.0, 6+). A collective -.5 in August and September (3.1 – 3.0 – 2.6, 6+), Your Public Radio news/talk WYPR “88.1 Your NPR News Station” remains at #12. Following five decreases in a row for a cumulative -1.7 (4.2 – 3.7 – 3.2 – 3.1 – 3.0 – 2.5, 6+), WYPR posted a July increase of six-tenths. American University-owned news/talker WAMU (1.0 – 1.1, +.1, 6+) is part of a four-way scrum at #18. Before slipping to 1.0 (6+) in August, WAMU notched a 1.1 (6+) five consecutive times in the Baltimore report. The March through September topline for Entercom business news WDCH is .8 – .8 – .8 – .6 – .5 – .5 – .6 (#26, 6+).

Baltimore Music Formats – Answering July’s -.8 with a collective +1.1 in August and September (4.4 – 5.0 – 5.5, 6+), Hearst Television’s WIYY “98 Rock” progresses from sixth to fourth with its best 6+-stat since August 2017 (5.5, as well). Prior to July’s decrease, “98 Rock” registered six successive ratings periods without a loss for an overall +1.8 (3.4 – 4.0 – 4.4 – 4.7 – 4.7 – 4.9 – 5.2, 6+). A collective -1.8 in four successive negative moves (6.8 – 6.5 – 6.1 – 5.2 – 5.0, 6+), Entercom adult contemporary WLIF improves by three-tenths to 5.3 (6+) and is steady in sixth-place. “Today’s 101.9” was #1 in December 2017 (9.7, 6+) and “Holiday” 2017 (16.3, 6+). In back-to-back sweeps, Baltimore City Community College-owned WBJC “91.5 Maryland’s Classic Music Station” more than triples (+1.9) its 6+-share (.8 – 1.3 – 2.7, 6+), catapulting from #16 to #11. In August, WBJC halted four straight down or flat trends that carved away approximately half (-.7) its 6+-share (1.5 – 1.2 – 1.0 – .8 – .8, 6+). It is a somewhat similar scenario for Entercom-owned gospel WLIF-HD2 which also more than triples (+1.3) its 6+ AQH share in August and September (.6 – 1.1 – 1.9, #18 to #15, 6+). Up one-tenth to 8.8 (6+), Radio One urban AC WWIN-FM finishes first for the ninth successive sweep as “Magic 95.9” bounces back from August’s -.8 (9.5 – 8.7, 6+). In three successive decreases (11.6 – 11.5 – 10.3 – 9.4, 6+), “Magic” was an overall -2.2 but it responded with a +.3 in June. After going eight straight ratings periods without a loss for an overall +3.8 (7.8 – 7.8 – 7.8 – 7.8 – 8.7 – 9.2 – 10.4 – 10.6 – 11.6, 6+), it lost one-tenth in March. Urban contemporary cluster-mate WERQ (7.8 – 7.6, -.2, 6+) occupies the runner-up slot for the fifth month in a row; “92-Q Jams” was up nine-tenths in August, with 7.8 its strongest 6+-stat since September 2017 (7.8, as well). The rollercoaster ride continues for iHeartMedia-owned WPOC “93.1 – Baltimore’s #1 for New Country,” which was a combined -2.6 in December and “Holiday” 2017 (7.2 – 6.2 – 4.6, 6+); +2.5 (January); -.9 (February); -1.5 (April); +.6 (May); +.5 (June); +.8 (July); -.6 (August) and now -.6 in September (6.2 – 5.6, flat at #3, 6+). Off one-tenth to 4.9 (6+) and dropping from sixth to eighth, Shamrock Communications-owned WZBA “100.7 The Bay – Baltimore’s Classic Rock Station” has its successive string of up or flat trends that produced an overall +2.2 snapped at eight (2.8 – 3.8 – 3.8 – 4.0 – 4.0 – 4.3 – 4.5 – 4.5 – 5.0, 6+).

St. Louis

Spoken-Word Formats – Wiping away July’s -.6 with a combined +.9 in August and September (7.4 – 7.6 – 8.3, 6+), Entercom news/talk KMOX “The Voice of St. Louis” marches from the runner-up slot to #1 with its highest 6+-stat since May (8.3, as well). The St. Louis Cardinals flagship was +2.3 in April. Following a January +1.0, KMOX was a combined -.6 in February and March. Despite being -.7 in three straight sweeps without an increase (3.3 – 3.1 – 2.6 – 2.6, 6+), Emmis-to-Entercom’s KFTK “FM News Talk 97.1” improves from #17 to #16. Owing to May’s +.3, “FM News Talk 97.1” ended three straight negative moves that accounted for a loss of eight-tenths (3.3 – 3.1 – 2.6 – 2.5, 6+). Three straight negative moves by Hubbard sports talk WXOS generated a loss of eight-tenths (3.5 – 2.9 – 2.8 – 2.7, 6+), but “101 Sports” follows with an overall +1.3 in July, August, and September (2.7 – 3.0 – 3.7 – 4.0, #12 to #11, 6+); 4.0 is its strongest 6+-showing since January (4.0, as well). WXOS posted a -.6 in both February and April. Without a decrease in the last four ratings periods for a net gain of six-tenths (2.9 – 3.2 – 3.4 – 3.5 – 3.5, 6+), University of Missouri news/talk KWMU remains at #14. Off by an overall half-share in February and March (3.7 – 3.5 – 3.2, 6+), KWMU added one-tenth in April.

St. Louis Music Formats – In back-to-back major-league wobbles, iHeartMedia classic hits-oldies KLOU “103.3 St. Louis’ Greatest Hits” completely obliterates August’s -1.1 (7.8 – 6.7, 6+) with a September gain of the same magnitude (6.7 – 7.8, +1.1, 6+) and advances from third to second. After regressing by a combined -1.5 in May and June, KLOU recaptured nine-tenths in July (6.9 – 7.8, 6+). On top for four consecutive months (January through April), “St Louis’ Greatest Hits” shifted to #2 in May. An overall -2.0 in January and February (9.5 – 7.9 – 7.5, 6+), KLOU made up 45% of that loss in March and April (7.5 – 8.3 – 8.4, 6+). Entercom adult contemporary KEZK “102.5 The Best Mix of the ‘80s & Today” erases an August decline in its entirety as well, flipping August’s -.5 into a September +.5 (5.9 – 5.4 – 5.9, seventh to sixth, 6+). Its August loss ended six consecutive up or flat trends that netted +1.7 (4.2 – 4.6 – 4.9 – 4.9 – 5.0 – 5.9 – 5.9, 6+). It is tied at #6 with Hubbard’s KPNT “105.7 The Point – Everything Alternative,” which registers its fifth consecutive positive spike for a +1.9 in that stretch (4.0 – 4.2 – 4.4 – 4.5 – 5.4 – 5.9, seventh to sixth, 6+). Moreover, this (5.9) is the highest 6+-performance for “The Point” since March 2016’s 6.1. It is only a one-month stay at #1 for Gateway Creative contemporary Christian KLJY (7.8 – 7.6, -.2, 6+), which segues from first to third. Even so, it’s a noteworthy story for “99.1 Joy FM,” which – after being unlisted for 18 straight sweeps – reappeared in print in June and by hauling out a +1.3 in August (6.5 – 7.8, 6+) marched from third to first. After posting a repetitive May through August topline of 5.8 – 6.2 – 5.8 – 6.2 (6+), Hubbard adult hits WARH “106.5 The Arch” falters by eight-tenths to 5.4 (fourth to eighth, 6+). Without a gain for the fifth straight sweep, Emmis-to-Entercom CHR KNOU “Now 96.3 All The Hits” (#16 to #17) is a collective -1.2 (3.7 -3.4 – 3.4 – 2.7 – 2.7 – 2.5, 6+).

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

| October 2, 2018

iHeartMedia Releases August Financial Figures; Revenue Up 6.3%. Although iHeartMedia is not publicly traded and required by law to release financial data, it is making monthly reports public during its Chapter 11 reorganization process. According to yesterday’s statement detailing August financial data, the company’s revenue climbed 6.3% to $299.4 million.  Operating income rose significantly to $76.8 million, and net income rose to a five-month high of $66.9 million.  (iHM posted sizable losses of $139.8 million and $119.7 million in both April and June, respectively.) During August, iHeartMedia paid out $9.7 million to outside professionals – those handling the reorganization process – down from July’s five-month high of $15.7 million.

Michael Harrison Podcast Poses Provocative Question:  Does the Human Brain Act as a Kind of Radio/Television Antenna?  Silicon Valley high-tech industry financial expert Mark Gober is this week’s guest on the award-winning PodcastOne series “The Michael Harrison Interview.”  Gober is the author of a provocative new book titled “An End to Upside Down Thinking: Dispelling the Myth That the Brain Produces Consciousness, and the Implications for Everyday Life” (Waterside Press, 2018).  In it, he presents the latest scientific research and evidence suggesting that, contrary to popular belief and mainstream science dogma, human consciousness doesn’t originate in the brain but, rather, in a higher universal dimension – perhaps even beyond time and space as we perceive them.  The implications of such a possibility are profound.  Harrison states, “I’ve always been fascinated by the obvious connections between human biology and our technological extensions of it.  In other words, our inventions are enhanced mechanical versions of what nature has already provided us.  Is it not possible that just as the content of radio and TV programs does not originate in the physical appliances that pluck it out of the air for us, our consciousness – thoughts, words and creativity – comes from some other invisible source outside the brain?  Maybe the brain is a biological radio antenna processing signals from elsewhere?  Mark Gober’s book tackles this issue in a direct, credible and understandable way.  He’s a great guest!”  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.

TALKERS News Notes. The NFL’s Washington Redskins are working with Skyview Networks’ AdView Inventory Management software and Live Read Capture system, under a new, multi-year deal.  Skyview says, “AdView’s custom design makes scheduling complex play-by-play inventory efficient, providing the Redskins a user-friendly solution as they bring their radio rights in-house for the first time.  With the ability to manage their own broadcast, the Redskins will benefit from scheduling flexibility and quick proof-of-performance turnaround to their sponsors.”  Skyview vice president of business development Matt Stys comments, “We are thrilled to work with the Washington Redskins and believe that AdView will be a powerful tool as they begin managing inventory in-house for the first time.  AdView is custom-tailored to play-by-play broadcasts, which maximizes value in scheduling.  We look forward to growing our partnership in seasons ahead.”…..More Washington Redskins news as Entercom announces it has inked a deal with the club to present Spanish play-by-play on WJFK-AM “El Zol Deportes.”  Entercom Washington SVP and market manager Phil Zachary states, “We’re excited to partner with the Washington Redskins and bring Spanish-language coverage of the team to fans in the community. As the unrivaled leader in sports radio, we remain committed to expanding our sports content and reaching an even broader audience.”…..In Indianapolis, Emmis Communications news/talk WIBC-FM takes on a new television partner for news and weather coverage. Since 2011, the station had a relationship with E.W. ScrippsABC affiliate WRTV-TV.  Going forward, the station is partnering with Nexstar’s CW affiliate WISH-TV.  As part of the deal, WIBC-FM will air an audio simulcast of the 5:00 am to 6:00 am “Daybreak” program.  Emmis Indianapolis vice president and market manager Bob Richards says, “WIBC has a serious commitment to local news.  We are thrilled to work with a TV station that is equally passionate about local coverage.  This partnership is a natural.”  WIBC director of programming David Wood adds, “We are already planning for some joint projects that will make this TV-radio partnership unique to the market.”…..The Waco Herald-Tribune reports that the launch of a new sports talk station by Edwards Media LLC is being delayed until the end of this month due to “engineering and recent weather issues.” The station – be heard via the HD2 channel of the company’s co-owned hip hop KWBT-FM and on translator K231CG at 94.1 FM – is expected to air CBS Sports Radio programming such as Jim Rome and “Tiki and Tierney,” along with local morning show “Go Big or Go Home” with station GM Rich Richardson.….It’s been seven seasons since the Milwaukee Brewers made the MLB playoffs and to celebrate, flagship radio station WTMJ is hosting “The Hometown Call at Turner Hall” for game one of the National League Division Series on Thursday (10/4).  At the venue, fans will hear Baseball Hall of Famer Bob Uecker calling the game on WTMJ while watching the television video.  Station director of programming and news Eric Brooks says, “We can’t wait to hear Mr. Baseball calling October baseball with hundreds of Brewers fans hanging on his every word.  This what the postseason is all about.”

Warner Wolf Loses Imus Age Discrimination Suit; Attorney Vows to Appeal. According to a report in the New York Daily News, longtime New York sports media figure Warner Wolf has lost his age discrimination suit against former employer Don Imus, largely on jurisdictional grounds.  Imus fired Wolf, who had been handling sports reports on the “Imus in the Morning” show from his home in Florida, in 2016.  In the complaint, Wolf states that Imus regularly mocked his senior citizen status on air prior to firing him.  But Manhattan Supreme Court Justice James d’Auguste ruled that since Wolf lived and worked in Florida, any discriminatory conduct would have taken place there.  In his decision, Judge d’Auguste also noted that Imus’ jabs about Wolf’s age didn’t rise to the level of discrimination since Imus himself is also old. Wolf attorney Doug Wigdor says they will appeal.

Kavanaugh Investigation, Sanders’ Stop BEZOS Bill, the USMCA Deal, U.S.-China Tensions, Kanye West ‘SNL’ Pro-Trump Speech, Midterm Elections, NFL Action, and MLB Playoffs Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (10/1). The accusations of sexual assault against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh and the FBI’s investigation into Christine Blasey Ford’s claim; Bernie Sanders’ bill that would tax Amazon, Walmart and others for the amount their workers receive in federal benefits; the new USMCA trade pact between the U.S., Mexico, and Canada; U.S.-China tensions over tariffs and China’s military programs in the South China Sea; the flap over Kanye West’s pro-Trump speech on “SNL”; November’s midterm elections and the battle to control congress; the weekend’s NFL action, and the MLB playoffs were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. In Atlanta, Louie Diaz is promoted to vice president/contemporary for Cumulus Radio Station Group.  Diaz is continuing his role as operations manager for Cumulus Media Atlanta and as program director for CHR WWWQ “Q100.” Cumulus EVP of content and programming Mike McVay states, “This move recognizes the success that our company has had with Louie Diaz, first in Dallas, then in D.C., and now in Atlanta.  We’re excited to have him join the team in the Office of Programming at Cumulus Media.”…..Adult hits WRRA, Pittsburgh “96.9 BOB FM” has a new program director as John Robertson announces his retirement from the Steel City Media station and Sean Stevens rises to the PD position.  Robertson has spent the last 20 years of his 40-plus year radio career with Steel City Media.  Stevens is currently the afternoon drive star and will retain that role while assuming the PD position…..M-10 Broadcasting’s classic hits WQLL-AM “Q1370” brings Ken Merson, a.k.a. Merson Person, aboard to host the “Merson Person in the Morning” program, effective October 8.  Merson has most recently been program director of SiriusXM’s “60s on 6” channel.  Current morning host Platinum Pat O’Neill moves to afternoons to make room for Merson…..In Kansas City, Steel City Media’s adult contemporary KCKC “KC102.1 ups Natalie “Rush” Randall from her APD/MD role to program director. She says of her promotion, “I discovered a new family since joining the team at ‘KC102.1,’ and being able to watch the station grow has been such an honor.  I’m excited to continue the forward momentum of KCKC and to lead the next chapter of the station.”…..WKLB, Boston morning personality Hannah Byrom exits the Beasley Media Group country station after two-plus years there.  She says via Facebook, “This morning was my last show with ‘COUNTRY 102.5.’  It’s been a great run for the past two-and-a-half years, and I’ll miss getting to hang with [co-host] Jackson Blue & [producer] Santi DeOleo every morning. THANK YOU to every one of you that allowed me into your life every morning.”…..Drake Hall and “The Drake Hall Show” come out on top again in The Memphis Flyer’s “Best in Memphis” 2018.  Hall hosts the morning show on Cumulus Media’s rock WXMX “98.1 The Max.”…..The new classic hits radio show, “Throwback Nation Radio,” debuts tonight from 7:00 pm-12:00 midnight on AC and classic hits stations in multiple markets across the U.S.  The show is being hosted by Tony Lorino and Danny Hustle…..Connoisseur Media announces the “One Song, One Us” campaign that is designed to “encourage unity, love, kindness, acceptance, and hope in our communities through the power of music and the artist’s messages by featuring a song at 2:00 pm every weekday on all stations.” Connoisseur director of brand management Michelle Stevens says the song will be chosen by the listeners.  She says, “The interactive nature of this initiative will provide listeners an authentic acceptance of the things that really matter most to each of us as human beings.  We all have struggled with issues like depression, addiction, insecurity, abuse, and a host of other things that can be disabling to the human spirit without compassion and support. Music is so often the familiar tie that is able to connect us all on a deeper level when it’s difficult to articulate for ourselves.  Together, we can take a fresh approach to the meaning behind the lyrics and weave a bond of unity, inner strength and the simple reassurance that we are not alone.”

September 2018 PPM Data – Round One. Information for the September 2018 ratings period has been released for New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Dallas, Houston, Atlanta, Philadelphia, Nassau-Suffolk (Long Island), Riverside, San Jose, and Middlesex-Somerset-Union (New Jersey). Nielsen Audio’s September 2018 survey period covered August 16 – September 12. See all the 6+ numbers from subscribing stations here. Meanwhile, managing editor Mike Kinosian (Kinosian@TALKERS.com) provides his “Takeaways” from these 12 PPM markets below.

TAKEAWAYS

New York City

Spoken-Word Formats – Off in each of the last four months for a collective -.8 (2.5 – 2.1 – 2.0 – 1.8 – 1.7, 6+), iHeartMedia news/talk WOR “710 The Voice of New York” adds three-tenths in September to 2.0 (#20 to #19, 6+). The key station of the Mets was up six-tenths in April. Its March gain of one-tenth ended five straight down or flat reports for a -.4 (2.2 – 2.2 – 2.0 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 1.8, 6+). Flat at #23, Townsquare Media’s news/talk WKXW “New Jersey 101.5” records its fifth straight month without a loss (1.1 – 1.1 – 1.1 – 1.1 – 1.1 – 1.3, 6+). Down of flat for six consecutive sweeps for a collective loss of three-tenths (1.2 – 1.2 – 1.1 – 1.1 – 1.0 – .9 -.9, 6+), Cumulus Media news/talk WABC mirrors WKXW by picking up two-tenths (1.1, #25 to #24, 6+). Having logged a 4.7 in three of the last four sweeps (4.7 – 4.4 – 4.7 – 4.7, 6+), Entercom sports talk WFAN “Sports Radio” falters by eight-tenths to 3.9 (6+), sliding from fifth to ninth; 4.7 (May, July and August) is its best 6+-showing since 5.2 in November 2017. The Yankees’ flagship logged back-to-back gains of +.8 (3.1 – 3.9 – 4.7, March – April – May, 6+). For the third month in succession, WEPN posts a 1.4 (#22 to #21, 6+); “98.7 ESPN New York” was locked on 1.7 (6+) in May and June. When WEPN picked up two-tenths in February, it halted three downward moves in succession that produced a loss of seven-tenths (1.8 – 1.4 – 1.2 – 1.1, 6+). A combined -2.0 in six consecutive sweeps without an increase (6.2 – 5.5 – 5.0 – 4.8 – 4.2 – 4.2 – 4.2, 6+), Entercom all-news WINS manages to advance from seventh to a sixth-place tie. Trending 2.7 – 2.5 – 2.7 – 2.6 – 2.8 (6+), co-owned/similarly-formatted WCBS-AM progresses from #15 to #13. In July, it ended three successive down or flat sweeps that accounted for a loss of eight-tenths (3.3 – 2.9 – 2.7 – 2.5, 6+). With an August improvement of seven-tenths, WNYC Broadcasting Foundation’s WNYC-FM recaptured in its entirety the seven-tenths it lost in May, June, and July (3.4 – 3.0 – 2.7 – 2.7, 6+); however, the public radio news/talker surrenders six-tenths in September (3.4 – 2.8, #11 to #13, 6+). Meanwhile, after recording a .5 (6+) three times in a row, co-owned news/talk WNYC-AM gains one-tenth to .6 (#30 to #27, 6+).

New York City Music Formats – Up or flat for the sixth time in succession for an overall +.6 (3.4 – 3.4 – 3.6 – 3.6 – 3.6 – 3.8 – 4.0, 6+), iHeartMedia rhythmic CHR WKTU “103.5 The Beat of New York” jumps from tenth to eighth. It overtakes Emmis’ similar-formatted WQHT “Hot 97 – #1 for Hip-Hop,” which sits at 3.9 for the fourth time in the last five ratings periods (3.9 – 4.0 – 3.9 – 3.9 – 3.9, 6+) and repeats at #9. After posting four straight modest gains for an overall boost of one-half share (3.5 – 3.6 – 3.7 – 3.9 – 4.0, 6+), “Hot” dropped one-tenth in July. An overall -1.6 via three setbacks in succession (8.5 – 7.7 – 7.3 – 6.9, 6+), iHeartMedia adult contemporary WLTW is a combined +.6 in August and September (6.9 – 7.1 – 7.5, 6+). Moreover, “106.7 Lite FM” is #1 for the 14th successive sweep. Prior to July, the last time WLTW fell below a six-share (6+) was in October 2017 (6.6). A collective +7.1 in five consecutive gains (6.0 – 6.1 – 6.6 – 7.0 – 8.8 – 13.1, 6+), WLTW was -5.1 in January and February (13.1 – 8.5 – 8.0, 6+) but rebounded in March and April with a +.5 (8.0 – 8.4 – 8.5, 6+). Its urban contemporary sibling, WWPR, continues a down/up pattern that began in December 2017 (3.9 – 3.2 – 3.5 – 3.3 – 3.4 – 3.3 – 3.6 – 3.4 – 3.8 – 3.3 – 3.5, 6+) as “Power 105.1” climbs from #12 to #11. In the market’s hot AC battle, Entercom’s WNEW “New 102.7,” whose April through August topline was 2.4 – 2.4 – 2.4 – 2.7 – 3.0 (6+), is off two-tenths to 2.8 (#13 to a four-way tie at #13), while Cumulus Media-owned WPLJ “New York’s 95.5 PLJ” adds one-tenth and is trending 2.2 – 2.2 – 2.4 – 2.2 – 2.3 (May through September, #18 to #17, 6+).

Los Angeles

Spoken-Word Formats – Albeit steady in sixth-place, iHeartMedia news/talk KFI “AM 640” is down or flat for the fourth time in a row for a collective loss of seven-tenths (4.4 – 4.1 – 4.1 – 3.8 – 3.7, 6+). Repeating August’s 1.2 (6+), Salem Media Group news/talk KRLA “AM 870 The Answer” inches up from #28 to #27. Flat in May (.8 – .8, 6+), and then up one-tenth in June, July, and August (.8 – .9 – 1.0 – 1.1, 6+), iHeartMedia news/talk KEIB “AM 1150 The Patriot” drops two-tenths to .9 (6+) and remains at #32. Cumulus Media-owned KABC “790 News-Talk-Evolved” logs a .4 (6+) for the fourth month in a row and stays at #41 (6+). Matching the (6+) August – September (1.2 – 1.2) topline of KRLA is iHeartMedia-owned Los Angeles Dodgers flagship KLAC “AM 570 LA Sports,” which triples its 6+-stat (+.8) through eight successive sweeps without a loss (.4 – .4 – .5 – .9 – .9 – 1.0 – 1.1 – 1.2 – 1.2, #28 to #27, 6+). Tied with news/talk KEIB is sports talk KSPN “710 ESPN,” which bounces back from August’s -.4 with a +.1 to .9 (#33 to #32, 6+). Prior to August’s loss of four-tenths, KSPN gained one-tenth in three straight sweeps (.9 – 1.0 – 1.1 – 1.2, 6+). A decrease of just one-tenth (3.1 – 3.0, 6+) is enough to force Entercom’s KNX from the top ten (#9 to #11); “1070 News Radio” added four-tenths in August. Down six-tenths in April, KNX followed with in an alternating 2.6 – 2.7 – 2.6 – 2.7 pattern (April – May – June – July, 6+). Over the course of the last seven sweeps, Pasadena City College news/talk KPCC “The Voice of Southern California” (unchanged at #16) has a 6+ topline of 2.7 – 2.6 – 2.7 – 2.7 – 2.5 – 2.5 – 2.5.

Los Angeles Music Formats – Within two-share range (6+) in each of the last 12 ratings periods, Meruelo Group rhythmic CHR KPWR “Power 106” busts out a +.6 to 3.2 (6+), catapulting from #15 to #9. On top for the fifth straight sweep, iHeartMedia hot AC KBIG is nonetheless off one-tenth for the third sweep in a row. In fact, its seven most recent trends are: 5.7 – 5.7 – 5.7 – 5.8 – 5.7 – 5.6 – 5.5 (6+). Dating back to December 2015, “My-FM” has set the pace on 17 of the past 37 Los Angeles sweeps: February 2017 through November 2017; January and February 2018; and May 2018 through September 2018. Remaining in the runner-up slot is Entercom classic hits-oldies KRTH “K-Earth 101,” which continues a repetitive 5.0 – 5.1 – 5.0 – 5.1 – 5.0 (6+) sequence. A collective +.7 in five straight months without a loss (4.1 – 4.4 – 4.4 – 4.7 – 4.8 – 4.8, 6+), smooth AC cluster-mate KTWV was then a combined six-tenths in three straight dips (4.8 – 4.5 – 4.3 – 4.2, 6+). In September, however, “94.7 The Wave” improves by four-tenths to 4.6 (fifth to fourth, 6+). An overall -.7 in six consecutive down or flat trends (4.9 – 4.9 – 4.7 – 4.5 – 4.5 – 4.3 – 4.2, 6+), iHeartMedia CHR KIIS picked up four-tenths in August, but “102.7 Kiss-FM” returns half that increase in September (4.6 – 4.4, -.2, 6+), slipping from third to fifth. Meanwhile, Entercom’s similarly-programmed KAMP “97.1 Amp Radio” – which had logged a 2.7 (6+) in May, June, and July before adding one-tenth to 2.8 (6+) in August – sputters by one-half share to 2.3 (6+), plummeting from #12 to #20. In six straight up or flat trends (2.2 – 2.2 – 2.3 – 2.4 – 2.5 – 2.8 – 2.9, 6+), co-owned KROQ was a combined +.7, but the alternative outlet drops one-tenth to 2.8 (#11 to #14, 6+). Its format foe, iHeartMedia’s KYSR-FM “Alt 98.7 – LA’s New Alternative,” is off a combined nine-tenths in four declines in succession (3.2 – 2.8 – 2.5 – 2.4 – 2.3, #19 to #20, 6+). After logging a 2.1 (6+) the past three consecutive months, Univision Radio regional Mexican KSCA drops one-tenth to 2.0 (#21 to #22, 6+); “Zona Mx 101.9” is within 2.1 – 2.8 range (6+) for the 20th ratings period in a row. Similarly, Mt. Wilson FM Broadcasters’ KKGO “Go Country 105” (#20 to #17, 6+) is within 2.0 – 2.9 range (6+) for the 35th time in succession and is without a loss for the fourth straight time (2.1 – 2.3 – 2.3 – 2.4 – 2.4, 6+) for a net gain of three-tenths.

Chicago

Spoken-Word Formats – Bouncing back from August’s one-half share loss with a gain of three-tenths (2.5 – 2.8, 6+), Tribune Media news/talk WGN climbs from #17 to #16. Entering the August sweep, the Chicago White Sox flagship posted three consecutive upticks for a combined full-share gain (2.0 – 2.2 – 2.4 – 3.0, 6+). When WGN picked up two-tenths in May, it halted three successive decreases that accounted for a collective -1.3 (3.3 – 3.1 – 2.2 – 2.0, 6+). The May through September topline trending for Cumulus Media news/talk WLS-AM is 1.7 – 1.5 – 1.7 – 1.7 – 1.7 (#23 to #22, 6+). Its +.2 in July ended four consecutive down or flat moves that accounted for a one-half share loss (2.0 – 2.0 – 1.8 – 1.7 – 1.5, 6+). Immediately prior to that, WLS-AM registered seven straight up or flat ratings periods and was +.7 in that stretch (1.3 – 1.5 – 1.5 – 1.5 – 1.5 – 1.7 – 2.0 – 2.0, 6+). Having logged a fluctuation of one-tenth in each of the last three months (3.6 – 3.5 – 3.4 – 3.5, 6+), Entercom sports talk WSCR “670 The Score” trots out a +.8 to 4.3 (eighth to sixth, 6+). Off two-tenths in back-to-back reports (2.7 – 2.5 – 2.3, 6+), the Chicago Cubs flagship rebounded with a +1.3 in April and May (2.3 – 3.2 – 3.6, 6+). Without an increase for seven successive sweeps for an overall loss of six-tenths (1.6 – 1.5 – 1.5 – 1.4 – 1.3 – 1.3 – 1.2 – 1.0, 6+), ESPN-owned WMVP “ESPN Chicago 1000” is up two-tenths to 1.2 (#26 to #24, 6+). After six straight down or flat showings for a collective -.7 (5.3 – 5.1 – 4.9 – 4.9 – 4.8 – 4.6 – 4.6, 6+), Entercom’s WBBM-AM adds two-tenths to 4.8 (sixth to fourth, 6+); February’s 5.3 its finest 6+-stat since March 2017’s 5.4. A combined -.8 in four straight decreases (3.0 – 2.8 – 2.5 – 2.4 – 2.2, 6+), Chicago Public Media news/talk WBEZ is up one-tenth to 2.3 (flat at #20, 6+); it was an overall +.8 in March and April (2.2 – 2.5 – 3.0, 6+). A March increase of three-tenths ended six straight down or flat sweeps that resulted in a collective -.7 (2.9 – 2.7 – 2.6 – 2.4 – 2.3 – 2.2 – 2.2, 6+).

Chicago Music Formats – While on top for the ninth month in a row, iHeartMedia urban AC WVAZ “V-103 Today’s R&B and Throwbacks” (6.0 – 5.7, -.3, 6+) has its lowest 6+-performance since “Holiday” 2017 (5.7, as well). WVAZ was up one-tenth in back-to-back ratings periods (5.9 – 6.0 – 6.1, May – June – July, 6+). Its gain of one-tenth in June halted four straight down or flat trends that produced a -.9 (6.8 – 6.6 – 6.1 – 6.1 – 5.9, 6+). In a highly-noteworthy eight straight up or flat trends (2.5 – 3.3 – 3.3 – 4.2 – 4.6 – 4.8 – 4.8 – 4.9 – 5.5, 6+), Hubbard’s WDRV more than doubled its 6+-stat (a combined +3.0). In September, however, “97.1 The Drive – Chicago’s Classic Rock” forfeits more than one-third of that increase (4.4, -1.1, second to fifth, 6+). Upon entering the September sweep, co-owned hot AC WTMX was no higher than 5.1 (6+) and no lower than 4.7 (6+) in each of the previous seven sweeps; however, “101.9 The Mix” regresses by eight-tenths to 4.1 (6+), sliding from fourth to seventh. A combined -.6 in July and August (3.5 – 3.1 – 2.9, 6+), iHeartMedia’s similarly-formatted WLIT erases half the deficit in September with a +.3 to 3.2 (#15 to #12, 6+). Immediately prior to that, “93.9 Lite FM” notched three increases in succession for an overall gain of four-tenths (3.1 – 3.3 – 3.4 – 3.5, 6+). Following August’s eight-tenths’ leap, Moody Bible Institute religious teaching WMBI “90.1 Moody Radio” surrenders more than half that increase (1.7 – 1.2, -.5, #24, 6+). Via three consecutive upticks, Cumulus Media-owned WLS-FM is a cumulative +1.2 (4.2 – 4.9 – 5.3 – 5.4, third to second, 6+). Before surrendering one-tenth in June, “94.7 Chicago’s Classic Hits” was an overall +1.6 in seven consecutive sweeps without a loss (2.7 – 3.0 – 3.0 – 3.1 – 3.4 – 3.5 – 3.8 – 4.3, 6+). Up or flat for the fifth successive month for a +.5 (2.6 – 2.7 – 3.0 – 3.0 – 3.0 – 3.1, Hubbard adult contemporary WSHE carries on at #13. Seven-tenths ahead of “100.3 SHE” is Venture Technologies Group adult contemporary WRME-LP “FM 87.7 Me TV,” which is within 3.3 – 3.8 range (6+) for the eighth month in a row and up or flat for the third successive time (3.6 – 3.5 – 3.5 – 3.5 – 3.3 – 3.7 – 3.8 – 3.8, seventh to eighth, 6+). Entercom’s WUSN “US-99 Chicago’s Hottest Country” (3.3 – 3.7, +.4, tenth to ninth, 6+) has a more than two-to-one advantage over iHeartMedia’s WEBG “Big 95.5 – Chicago’s New Country” (1.8 – 1.6, -.2, #22 to #23, 6+). This is the 14th straight time that “US-99” is within 3.0 – 3.9 range.

San Francisco

Spoken-Word Formats – Following four successive increases for an overall +1.3 (2.1 – 2.3 – 2.7 – 3.0 – 3.4, 6+), Cumulus Media news/talk KSFO falters by a combined -1.0 in August and September (3.4 – 3.0- 2.4, #12 to #15, 6+). Prior to gaining two-tenths in March, KSFO was a combined -1.3 in five straight decreases, (3.4 – 3.0 – 2.4 – 2.2 – 2.2 – 2.1, 6+). As a result of forfeiting three-quarters of August’s +.4 (2.1 – 1.8, -.3, 6+), cluster-mate KGO departs the top twenty (#20 to #22). The August increase ended four successive down or flat trends that resulted in a -.3 (2.0 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 1.7 – 1.7, 6+). After trending 3.8 – 3.7 – 3.6 – 3.7 – 3.7 (6+) since April, co-owned San Francisco Giants flagship KNBR spirals by eight-tenths to 2.9 (6+) and fades from the top ten (#5 to #14). “The Sports Leader” gained nine-tenths in April. Chipping away at July’s -1.1 (2.6 – 1.5, 6+), Entercom’s KGMZ “95.7 The Game” is a combined +.5 in August and September (1.5 – 1.8 – 2.0, #22 to #21, 6+). Before the June report, when it lost one-tenth, the key station of the Oakland A’s had been without a loss the previous nine ratings periods, nearly tripling (+1.7) its 6+-stat in that timeframe (1.0 – 1.2 – 1.4 – 1.4 – 1.5 – 1.7 – 2.1 – 2.1 – 2.3 – 2.7, 6+). This marks the eighth time in a row that sibling KCBS-AM (5.7 – 5.3, -.4, 6+) finishes in the runner-up slot. Frozen on 5.4 (6+) in April and May, the all-news operation was then stuck on 5.5 (6+) in June and July. In advance of posting a one-tenth gain in June, KCBS-AM had been down or flat the previous four sweeps for a net loss of eight-tenths (6.2 – 5.7 – 5.6 – 5.4 – 5.4, 6+). It is 1.5 shares (6+) behind Northern California Public Broadcasting news/talk KQED (6.8, +.4, 6+), which is #1 for the eighth straight month. Its gain of four-tenths pulls the plug on five downward trends in a row that accounted for a -2.5 (8.9 – 8.4 – 8.1 – 7.1 – 6.7 – 6.4, 6+). San Francisco Unified School District’s KALW “91.7 Local Public Radio” notches a one-half share for the fifth time in the last seven monthlies (.5 – .5 – .6 – .4 – .5 – .5 – .5, #32, 6+).

San Francisco Music Formats – Steady at #4, Entercom-owned hot AC KLLC is up or flat for the fourth straight time for a +.5 (3.3 – 3.6 – 3.8 – 3.8 – 3.8, 6+). Prior to June’s increase, “Alice @ 97.3” was off eight-tenths via four successive declines (4.1 – 3.7 – 3.6 – 3.5 – 3.3, 6+). Adult contemporary cluster-mate KOIT-FM “96.5 Today’s Hits & Yesterday’s Favorites” regresses by a collective -.7 in four straight down or flat moves (3.9 – 3.8 – 3.4 – 3.4 – 3.2, ninth to tenth, 6+). Unchanged at #3 is iHeartMedia’s similarly-formatted KISQ “98.1 The Breeze,” which is -.4 in three modest dips in succession (5.0 – 4.8 – 4.7 – 4.6, 6+), after being an overall +.6 via four straight up or flat trends (4.4 – 4.4 – 4.6 – 4.9 – 5.0, 6+). Improving by one-half share each and making healthy ranker moves in the process are Bonneville urban AC KBLX “102.9 The Soul of the Bay” (3.3 – 3.8, tenth to fourth, 6+); iHeartMedia hot AC KIOI “Star 101.3” (3.2 – 3.7, #11 to #6, 6+); and co-owned KOSF “iHeart80s @ 103.7” (2.7 – 3.2, #15 to #10, 6+). This is the best 6+-stat for “Star” since February’s 3.8. Meanwhile, the last time KOSF reached the three-share level was nearly three years ago (3.0, October 2015). In four straight up or flat sweeps, Cumulus Media classic rocker KSAN is an overall +.7 (2.3 – 2.4 – 2.9 – 3.0 – 3.0, #12 to #13, 6+). Prior to August, “107.7 The Bone” recorded a 6+-share between 2.0 – 2.9 in each of the previous 40 sweeps.

Dallas

Spoken-Word Formats – An increase of two-tenths to 2.4 (6+) is enough to send Cumulus Media’s WBAP  back into the top twenty (#21 to #19). Preceding the September sweep, “News Talk 820” posted a 2.2 (6+) in three of the previous five sweeps (2.2 – 2.2 – 2.1 – 2.1 – 2.2, 6+). Salem Media Group-owned KSKY “660 AM The Answer,” which had been without an increase the past four months for an overall -.3 (1.0 – .8 – .7 – .7 – .7, 6+), gains two-tenths to .9 (6+) and is steady at #34. Down or flat four consecutive ratings periods (.6 – .6 – .6 – .5 – .4, 6+), Cumulus Media’s KLIF-AM “570 News & Information” adds one-tenth to .5 (flat at #25, 6+). Displaying a repetitive 2.9 – 2.8 – 2.9 – 2.8 6+-topline, co-owned sports talk KTCK “The Ticket – All Sports, All The Time” continues at #16. The +1.2 (2.9 – 3.3 – 4.1, 6+) that “The Ticket” racked up in April and May was fully erased in June by a -1.2. Although level at 2.3 (6+), Entercom sports talk KRLD-FM “105.3 The Fan” drops from #19 to a three-way tie at #20. Prior to August, “The Fan” had been down by one-tenth in each of the previous three sweeps (2.4 – 2.3 – 2.2 – 2.1, 6+). In advance of a +.5 in April, the Texas Rangers flagship posted five straight negative trends that resulted in a -1.2 (3.1 – 2.5 – 2.4 – 2.3 – 2.1 – 1.9, 6+). The ten most recent 6+-stats for ESPN’s KESN “103.3 ESPN Dallas” (#33 to #32) are 1.1 – 1.0 – .9 – 1.0 – 1.1 – 1.1 – 1.0 – .9 – .9 – 1.0. Despite being a consistent 2.1 – 2.1 – 2.3 – 2.2 (6+) from June through September, Entercom news-talk hybrid KRLD-AM “News Radio 1080” exits the top twenty (#19 to #23). In fact, going back to “Holiday” 2016, KRLD-AM is within a high of 2.8 and a low of 2.0. Prior to August’s +.2, “News Radio 1080” was a collective -.7 through five straight months without an increase (2.8 – 2.6 – 2.6 – 2.4 – 2.1 – 2.1, 6+). A loss of two-tenths in March ended at seven a consecutive string of up or flat trends that netted seven-tenths (2.1 – 2.1 – 2.2 – 2.4 – 2.4 – 2.5 – 2.7 – 2.8, 6+). After notching a 6+-stat in the two-share range for 37 consecutive sweeps, North Texas Public Broadcasting news/talk KERA posts a +.4 to 3.0 (#18 to #14, 6+).

Dallas Music Formats – At the same time that WAY Media contemporary Christian KAWA “WAY-FM Uplifting-Upbeat-Real” improves by seven-tenths (1.6 – 2.3, #20, 6+), First Dallas Media’s similarly-formatted KCBI “90.9 Encouraging Music – Words of Hope” regresses by one-half share (2.0 – 1.5, #27, 6+). It is the lowest 6+-share for KCBI since “Holiday” 2017’s 1.3. As the result of five straight sweeps without a loss, City of Dallas-owned WRR “Classical 101” more than doubles (+1.7) its 6+ share (1.4 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 2.0 – 3.0 – 3.1, #15 to #13, 6+). At #1 for the ninth straight month, iHeartMedia-owned KHKS “106.1 Kiss – Dallas/Fort Worth’s Hit Music” follows August’s +1.1 (5.5 – 6.6, 6+) with a loss of four-tenths to 6.2 (6+). “Kiss” was a combined -1.4 in June and July (6.9 – 6.3 – 5.5, 6+), after a +1.5 via three upticks in a row (5.4 – 6.0 – 6.7 – 6.9, 6+). When “Kiss” reached #1 in January, it was the first time the mainstream CHR held the lead position since March 2017. Without a loss for five successive sweeps for a +.7 (2.4 – 2.4 – 2.5 – 2.8 – 2.8 – 3.1, 6+), Entercom-owned KVIL “Alt 103.7 – DFW’s New Alternative” surrenders four-tenths to 2.7 (#13 to #18, 6+). Notwithstanding it is down or flat  for the sixth time in a row (4.4 – 4.3 – 4.2 – 4.2 – 4.1 – 4.1 – 4.1, 6+), Cumulus Media country outlet KPLX “99.5 The Wolf” climbs from sixth to fifth. It is two-tenths behind co-owned and similarly-programmed KSCS “New Country 96.3” (flat at 4.3 and steady at #3, 6+). When KSCS dropped nine-tenths in August, it curtailed seven successive up or flat trends that accounted for a +1.3 (3.9 – 4.3 – 4.3 – 4.3 – 4.5 – 4.6 – 4.7 – 5.2, 6+). July’s 5.2 represents the best-ever 6+ share in KSCS’ PPM history and first time it ever reached the five-share level (6+).

Houston

Spoken-Word Formats – Off a combined nine-tenths in August and September (4.1 – 3.6 – 3.2, 6+), iHeartMedia news/talk KTRH tumbles from #13 to #16; “News Radio 740” improved by six-tenths in January. Among the market’s sports talk competitors, iHeartMedia-owned Houston Astros flagship KBME “Sports Talk 790” is trending 1.3 – 1.2 – 1.2 – 1.3 – 1.1 – 1.5 (unchanged at #22, 6+); Entercom’s KILT-AM “Sports Radio 610” gains two-tenths (.9 – 1.1, 6+) yet backslides from #23 to #24, 6+); and Gow Communications’ KFNC returns August’s +.1 (.6 – .7 – .6, 6+) but “ESPN 97.5” remains at #27. Albeit flat at 3.2 (6+), University of Houston news/talk KUHF advances from #17 to #16, where it is tied with KTRH.

Houston Music Formats – An overall -1.3 in three straight negative moves (4.8 – 4.4 – 4.2 – 3.5, 6+), Radio One rhythmic CHR KBXX “97.9 The Box” responds with a +.4 to 3.9 (6+) and returns to the top ten (#14 to #9). In August, “The Box” slipped below a four-share (3.5, 6+) for the first time since July 2017’s 3.9. In addition to being on top for the fifth month in a row, iHeartMedia adult contemporary KODA “Sunny 99.1” is up six-tenths in three straight up or flat trends (7.0 – 7.3 – 7.3 – 7.6, 6+). Having finished first in four successive sweeps, “Sunny 99.1” segued to second in March, but then rebounded from a -1.1 in March with an April +.8 to return to the top spot. Its 12.5 in “Holiday” 2017 is its strongest 6+-stat since “Holiday” 2016’s 10.3 and the first time any Houston station reached double-digits (6+) since that ratings period. A cumulative -1.5 in June and July (7.2 – 6.5 – 5.7, 6+), Radio One urban AC KMJQ responds with a collective +.7 in August and September (5.7 – 6.3 – 6.4, 6+). “Majic 102.1 – The People’s Station” remains in the runner-up slot for the fifth month in a row. Stuck on 7.0 (6+) in January and February, “Majic” dropped to 6.8 (6+) in March; it was tied for #1 in April. On the heels of gaining four-tenths in August to 4.2 (6+), Entercom Spanish contemporary KLOL “Mega 101” forfeits twice that increase with a September loss of eight-tenths (3.4, 6+), drifting from #9 to #15. In advance of the August sweep, “Mega 101” had a March – July 6+ topline of 3.7 – 3.8 – 3.9 – 3.8 – 3.8. Adult hits cluster-mate KKHH “95.7 The Spot,” which was +1.2 in four straight positive spikes (4.5 – 4.6 – 4.9 – 5.3 – 5.7, 6+), surrenders just over half that combined increase (5.0, -.7, third to seventh, 6+). Dating back to “Holiday” 2017, Cox Media Group classic rock KGLK was an overall +1.4 in eight straight up or flat trends (4.3 – 4.6 – 4.8 – 4.8 – 4.8 – 4.9 – 5.2 – 5.7 – 5.7, 6+). The string ends in September though as “Houston’s Eagle” is off four-tenths to 5.3 (third to fourth, 6+). KGLK’s 5.7 in July and August is its strongest 6+-performance since 5.9 in October 2017.

Atlanta

Spoken-Word Formats – Down three-tenths in July and August (7.8 – 7.6 – 7.5, 6+), Cox Media Group news/talk WSB-AM rebounds in September with a +.4 to 7.9 and is #1 for the 34th consecutive time. When WSB-AM gained three-tenths in June, it halted three consecutive negative moves that accounted for a -2.7 (10.2 – 9.4 – 8.4 – 7.7 – 7.5, 6+). Leveling out at 1.3 (6+), following August’s -1.0 (2.3 – 1.3, 6+), Cumulus Media’s WYAY “106.6 Where Atlanta Comes to Talk” continues at #21. WYAY was a collective +.5 in June and July (1.8 – 2.1 – 2.3, 6+). Prior to April’s 2.0 (6+), WYAY recorded a 1.8 (6+) in January, February, and March. A combined -1.1 in May and June (3.3 – 2.7 – 2.2, 6+), following an April increase of seven-tenths, Entercom sports talk WZGC “92.9 The Game” is now an overall +1.1 in three upticks in a row (2.2 – 2.5 – 3.2 – 3.3, #16 to #15, 6+). Doubling the two-tenths it picked up in August (2.0 – 2.4, +.4, 6+), Dickey Broadcasting’s WCNN “Sports Radio The Fan” carries on at #18. When the AM flagship of the Atlanta Braves lost two-tenths in July, it halted seven successive sweeps without a decrease that netted eight-tenths (1.2 – 1.2 – 1.2 – 1.3 – 1.5 – 1.7 – 1.8 – 2.0 – 2.0, 6+). Down or flat five sweeps in a row for an overall -1.4 (4.5 – 4.5 – 4.2 – 4.0 – 3.8 – 3.1, 6+), City of Atlanta Board of Education news/talk WABE recoups half that deficit (seven-tenths) in August and September (3.1 – 3.5 – 3.8, #12 to #11, 6+). April – September stats for Georgia State University news/talk WRAS (#25 to #23) are .6 – .7 – .6 – .8 – .8 – .8 (6+).

Atlanta Music Formats – An increase of three-tenths to 5.5 (fifth to fourth, 6+) by Cox Media Group adult contemporary WSB-FM “B-98.5” pulls the plug on four down or flat sweeps in succession for a collective loss of seven-tenths (5.9 – 5.8 – 5.6 – 5.6 – 5.2, 6+). An overall -.9 in July and August (4.3 – 4.0 – 3.4, 6+), urban AC sibling WALR “Kiss 104.1 – Atlanta’s R&B” erases two-thirds of that shortage with a +.6 to 4.0 (6+) and is back in the top ten (#13 to #10). “Kiss” posted three negative trends in succession for an overall loss of nine-tenths (4.5 – 4.3 – 4.1 – 3.6, 6+), but was up seven-tenths in June. This Georgia metro’s two CHR rivals again finish back-to-back, only in September, iHeartMedia’s WWPW “Power 96.1 Atlanta’s #1 Hit Music Station” (ninth to seventh, 6+) emerges ahead of Cumulus Media’s WWWQ “Q-100, Atlanta’s New Hits” (unchanged at #8, 6+). “Power” is without a loss for the fifth straight time for a cumulative gain of one full-share (3.4 – 3.4 – 3.5 – 4.1 – 4.1 – 4.4, 6+), while “Q-100” is up three-tenths in four straight up or flat moves (4.0 – 4.0 – 4.2 – 4.2 – 4.3, 6+). Locked on 6.6 (6+) in June and July, classic hits-oldies sibling WSRV notched a one-half share increase in August to 7.1 (6+), but “97.1 The River” surrenders seven-tenths to 6.4 (6+), segueing from second to third. Three positive spikes in a row by Salem Media Group contemporary Christian WFSH netted a +1.9 (4.0 – 4.8 – 5.0 – 5.9, 6+), but “The Fish” falters by six-tenths to 5.3 (fourth to fifth, 6+). August’s 5.9 is its strongest 6+-showing since January’s 6.0. Following a May through August (repetitive 6+) sequence of 4.6 – 4.7 – 4.6 – 4.7, Radio One-owned WHTA “Hot 107.9” surrenders one-half share to 4.2 (seventh to ninth, 6+). In the market’s country contest, iHeartMedia’s WUBL “94.9 The Bull” is off one-tenth (3.8 – 3.7, #11 to #12. 6+), while Cumulus Media-owned WKHX “Kicks 101.5 – Atlanta’s #1 For Country Hits” adds one-tenth (3.3 – 3.4, flat at #14, 6+). A one-tenth May setback by “The Bull” ended four increases in a row for an overall gain of six-tenths (4.1 – 4.2 – 4.5 – 4.6 – 4.7, 6+); it was then -.7 in June. July’s 3.9 by “Kicks” is the station’s  best 6+-showing since August 2017 (3.9, as well). Not only does Entercom hot AC WSTR have its consecutive string of up or flat monthlies that yielded a collective +1.4 end at four (2.5 – 3.6 – 3.6 – 3.9 – 3.9, 6+), “Star 94.1 – Today’s Hits” exits the top ten (3.6, -.3, #10 to #13). Having logged seven straight up or flat moves (1.3 – 1.3 – 1.5 – 1.5 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 2.1, 6+) and finishing #19 in May, Cox Media Group urban contemporary WSTR-HD3 is unlisted for the fourth month in a row.

Philadelphia

Spoken-Word Formats – Continuing its winning ways, Entercom’s WPHT is +1.3 in five straight positive spikes (1.5 – 1.6 – 1.7 – 2.2 – 2.5 – 2.8, #15 to #14, 6+). “Talk Radio 1210” was stuck on 1.8 (6+) in “Holiday” 2017 and January 2018 and then on 1.9 (6+) in February and March, before dropping to 1.5 in April. Townsquare Media news/talk WKXW “New Jersey 101.5” (#21 to #22) is off two-tenths to 1.3, its weakest 6+-showing in Philadelphia since December 2017 (1.3, as well). After logging a +.7 in August, Entercom sports talk WIP “Sports Radio 94.1” levels out at 5.9 and remains in sixth-place (6+). Prior to August, WIP was a collective -1.7 in three straight decreases (6.9 – 6.1 – 5.6 – 5.2, 6+). The Phillies flagship was an overall +2.6 (January); -.8 (February); -2.9 (March); +1.1 (April); -.8 (May); -.5 (June); and +.7 in August. Flat at #18, Beasley Media Group sports talk WPEN-FM is without a gain for the fifth time in succession for an overall decline of one full-share (2.8 – 2.3 – 2.0 – 2.0 – 1.9 – 1.8, 6+); “97.5 The Fanatic” was +.9 in January. On the heels of an August +.7 to 5.2 (6+), Entercom’s KYW “News Radio 1060” slips by one-tenth to 5.1 but continues in eighth-place (6+). In four consecutive down or flat trends (6.0 – 5.0 – 4.7 – 4.5 – 4.5, 6+), KYW was -1.5. An increase of nine-tenths in March (5.1 – 6.0, 6+) gave “News Radio 1060” its strongest 6+-showing in three years (6.1, March 2015), but it then surrendered one full-share in April. An August increase of one-half share by WHYY discontinued three successive declines for an overall -1.1 (4.4 – 3.7 – 3.6 – 3.3, 6+), but the public news/talk outlet drops one-tenth in September (3.8 – 3.7, 6+) and stays at #10.

Philadelphia Music Formats – Not only does iHeartMedia CHR WIOQ jump from #13 to #11 with a one-half share increase to 3.5 (6+), “Q-102 Philly’s #1 Hit Music Station” applies the brakes to four straight decreases that accounted for a collective -.8 (3.8 – 3.6 – 3.5 – 3.2 – 3.0, 6+). Over and above racking up its third improvement in a row for a +1.9 (5.8 – 6.4 – 7.3 – 7.7, 6+), co-owned WDAS-FM marches from second to first. August’s 7.3 marked the first time “Philly’s Best R&B and Throwbacks” reached the seven-share level (6+) since September 2017’s 7.1. Immediately prior to a loss of one-half share in June, WDAS-FM was an overall +.8 in three straight positive spikes (5.5 – 5.8 – 6.0 – 6.3, 6+). Ousted from the top spot and shifting to second is Entercom classic hits-oldies WOGL “98.1 – Nobody Plays More 80s,” which is a combined -1.2 in August and September (8.2 – 7.5 – 7.0, 6+). This comes immediately after six straight gains for a combined +2.9 (5.3 – 6.3 – 6.9 – 7.0 – 7.2 – 7.7 – 8.2, 6+). July’s 8.2 represents its highest-ever 6+-stat in the PPM-era. When WOGL reached #1 in that sweep, it was the first time the station occupied that spot since August 2017. In five straight sweeps without a loss (3.4 – 3.4 – 3.4 – 3.6 – 3.6 – 3.8, 6+), iHeartMedia alternative WRFF gained a collective four-tenths, but “Radio 104.5 Philadelphia’s Alternative” falters by six-tenths to 3.2 (6+) and departs the top ten (#10 to #12). Unchanged at #4, WBEB “Today’s 101.1 More FM” is a collective -2.2 in three consecutive decreases (8.5 – 7.8 – 6.5 – 6.3, 6+). WBEB had been on top from March through June but was dislodged from the top spot in July. In “Holiday” 2017, WBEB achieved its most potent 6+-share since 17.9 in “Holiday” 2016.        Entercom is now operating WBEB under a Time Brokerage Agreement (TBA), until it officially closes on its $57.5 million purchase of the Jerry Lee Radio adult contemporary outlet.

Long Island

Spoken-Word Formats – In three straight down or flat trends (3.1 – 2.3 – 1.9 – 1.9 – 1.8, 6+), iHeartMedia news/talk WOR “710 The Voice of New York” was a collective -1.3, but the key station of the New York Mets recaptures one full-share (2.8, 6+) and rockets back into the top twenty (#22 to #13). Before surrendering three-tenths in March, WOR was an overall +.8 in three straight gains (2.0 – 2.1 – 2.6 – 2.8, 6+). Cumulus Media news/talk WABC adds two-tenths to 1.5 (#23). Its +.1 in August stopped four consecutive down or flat moves that accounted for a loss of three-tenths (1.5 – 1.4 – 1.4 – 1.4 – 1.2, 6+). Despite dropping two-tenths (5.2 – 5.0, 6+), Entercom’s WFAN repeats at #1. August’s 5.2 is its strongest 6+-showing in Long Island since November 2017’s 5.9. “Sports Radio” was -1.1 in February; a collective +1.8 in April and May (2.9 – 4.0 – 4.7, 6+); -.5 in June; and the New York Yankees’ flagship was +.7 in July. WEPN “98.7 ESPN New York” is off seven-tenths in four straight down or flat trends (2.3 – 2.0 – 1.8 – 1.6 – 1.6, #22, 6+), immediately after five consecutive upticks for a +1.2 (1.1 – 1.2 – 1.3 – 1.8 – 2.0 – 2.3, 6+). Stuck on 2.5 (6+) in June, July, and August, WCBS-AM adds two-tenths to 2.7 (#15 to #14, 6+). The Entercom all-news operation gained two-tenths in January, halting four straight down or flat trends for an overall loss of one full-share (3.8 – 3.7 – 3.0 – 2.8 – 2.8, 6+). It is tied with co-owned and similarly-formatted WINS (2.8 – 2.7, -.1, #13 to #14, 6+). Prior to the September sweep, WINS showed a month-to-month fluctuation of three-tenths four straight times: +.3 (May); -.3 (June); -.3 (July); and +.3 (August). Checking in at #19, WNYC Broadcasting Foundation news/talk WNYC-FM is trending 1.6 – 1.9 – 1.6 – 1.7 – 1.5 – 1.5 – 1.7 – 2.0 (February 2018 – September 2018, 6+).

Long Island Music Formats – It remains tight at the top, as the first six Nassau-Suffolk September 2018 finishers are separated by seven-tenths of a share. Despite dropping four-tenths (5.1 – 4.7, 6+), Connoisseur Media hot AC WALK-FM remains in the runner-up slot. “Real Variety 97.5” was ousted from the penthouse in July after nine straight months there. Its +.1 in August halted seven successive sweeps without an increase for an overall -7.6 (12.6 – 7.4 – 7.4 – 7.0 – 6.1 – 5.8 – 5.1 – 5.0, 6+). A one-half share decline (2.6 – 2.1, 6+) sends Entercom’s similarly-programmed WNEW “New 102.7” from #14 to #18. One-tenth behind is its NYC format rival – Cumulus Media’s WPLJ “New York’s 95.5 PLJ” (2.2 – 2.0, -.2, #18 to #19, 6+). Mirroring WALK-FM’s (6+) August – September 5.1 – 4.7 profile and thus part of the four-way tie at #2 is its classic hits-oldies sibling WBZO “103.1 Max FM,” which gained one-half share in August (4.6 – 5.1, 6+). In five straight down or flat trends, Entercom’s similarly-formatted WCBS-FM was a collective -1.2 (4.9 – 4.4 – 4.3 – 4.3 – 3.8 – 3.7, 6+), but “101.1 New York’s Greatest Hits” regains one  full-share in August and September (3.7 – 4.6 – 4.7, 6+). It moves from #5 to that aforementioned four-way logjam at #2. Included in that scrum as well is iHeartMedia New York City CHR WHTZ “Z-100,” which is flat or down slightly for the fifth straight time for a collective loss of four-tenths (5.1 – 5.0 – 5.0 – 4.9 – 4.8 – 4.7, 6+) yet actually moves up from #4. Off one-tenth (2.5 – 2.4, 6+), Emmis rhythmic CHR WQHT “Hot 97” (#15 to #16) is within 2.0 – 2.9 territory (6+) for the 47th consecutive ratings period.

Riverside

Spoken-Word Formats – Immediately after dropping four-tenths in August to 1.3 (6+), San Bernardino Community College news/talk KVCR regains one-tenth (1.4, #13 to #12, 6+). KVCR nearly doubled its 6+-stat in June and July (.9 – 1.1 – 1.7, 6+). In advance of the February sweep, KVCR was +.4 via three minor upticks in a row (.9 – 1.0 – 1.1 – 1.3, 6+). Without an increase for the fourth Inland Empire sweep in succession (.5 – .5 – .4 – .4 – .3, 6+), Pasadena City College news/talk KPCC “The Voice of Southern California” manages to climb from #19 to #17. It is tied with iHeartMedia news talk KKDD “1290 News Talk IE,” which after debuting in July with a .2 (6+), gained one-tenth in August (.3, 6+) and is flat in September (.3, 6+). Co-owned KPWK “Fox Sports Radio 1350 AM” (formerly KUBE) disappeared from print in June; resurfaced in July with a .2 (6+); dropped one-tenth to .1 (6+) in August; and adds one-tenth in September (.2, #21, 6+). Los Angeles Angels-owned (LAA 1, LLC)/similarly-formatted KLAA “Angels Radio AM 830” is unlisted for the eighth month in a row.

Riverside Music Formats – In an absolute runaway, the honors for largest (6+) August 2018 – September 2018 gain by any station in the 12 PPM-markets noted here goes to Entravision’s KLYY “Jose” (7.4 – 9.9, +2.5, 6+). Not only that, “Jose” finishes first for the fourth successive sweep and is +5.3 in five straight positive spikes (4.6 – 6.4 – 6.5 – 6.9 – 7.4 – 9.9, 6+). This follows five sweeps in succession without an increase for an overall -3.0 (7.6 – 7.3 – 5.8 – 5.8 – 5.0 – 4.6, 6+). June 2018 marked the first time “Jose” was in the lead position since “Holiday” 2017 when it scored a 7.3 (6+). The last time KLYY reached the nine-share level (6+) was in February 2017 (9.2). Continuing in the runner-up slot, Anaheim Broadcasting classic hits-oldies KOLA is a collective +.9 in three successive monthlies without a loss (6.3 – 6.6 – 7.2 – 7.2, 6+). Its +.3 in July ended four downward trends in succession that generated a -2.1 (8.4 – 7.1 – 6.7 – 6.5 – 6.3, 6+). In four straight sweeps without a loss (2.5 – 3.0 – 3.0 – 3.1 – 3.8, 6+), LC Media urban-rhythmic oldies KQIE is a collective +1.3 as “Old School 104.7” carries on at #6. Following four straight Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario decreases for an overall -1.8 (5.3 – 4.9 – 3.9 – 3.6 – 3.5, 6+), Univision Radio Spanish contemporary KLVE “107.5 K-Love” posts a +.6 to 4.1 (6+) and is steady at #5. A collective +1.5 in June and July (3.4 – 4.1 – 4.9), iHeartMedia rhythmic CHR KGGI relinquished 80% of that increase in August (3.7, -1.2, 6+); however, “99.1 Riverside’s Hottest Hit Music” answers with a +.5 in September to 4.2 and continues in fourth-place. Improving by one-half share as well is All-Pro Broadcasting adult contemporary KATY “101.3 The Mix” (1.1, #17 – #14, 6+), which had notched a .6 in four of the last five sweeps (.6 – .6 – .7. – .6 – .6, 6+). In three consecutive losses, Entercom country outlet KFRG was -1.5 (5.9 – 5.5 – 4.9 – 4.4, 6+), but “K-Frog” picks up one-tenth to 4.5 and carries on at #3. When KFRG sputtered by four-tenths in June, it snapped at four a consecutive string of increases that netted an overall +1.3 (4.6 – 4.9 – 5.4 – 5.8 – 5.9, 6+). Faltering by six-tenths each are Anaheim Broadcasting’s KCAL-FM “96.7 Rocks” (ninth to tenth, 6+), which is -1.0 in four straight sweeps without an increase (2.8 – 2.8 – 2.7 – 2.4 – 1.8, 6+) and Lazer Licenses’ Spanish adult hits KCAL-AMLa Mexicana 1410” (.7 – .1, #16 to #23, 6+). Meanwhile, Lazer Broadcasting regional Mexican KXSB “Radio Lazer” is without a gain for the fifth straight month for a collective -.6 (.7 – .6 – .6 – .4 – .3 – .1, #21 to #23, 6+). Entering the August sweep, iHeartMedia Spanish adult hits KFOO recorded a .3 (6+) in three of the previous four sweeps (.3 – .3 – .5 – .3, 6+). “La Preciosa 1440 AM” erupted with a +.7 to 1.0 (6+), only to disappear from print in September.

San Jose

Spoken-Word Formats – This is the third increase in a row for Cumulus Media’s KGO for a cumulative +1.1 (1.7 – 1.9 – 2.4 – 2.8, #16 to #15, 6+). July’s increase stopped four successive downward sweeps for a -1.4 (3.1 – 2.9 – 2.1 – 2.0 – 1.7, 6+). Co-owned news/talk KSFO, however, relinquishes exactly half of its 6+-share (-1.1) in three consecutive downward moves (2.2 – 2.0 – 1.8 – 1.1, #21 to #27, 6+). Prior to July, KSFO was without a loss the previous five months for an overall +1.0 (1.2 – 1.5 – 1.9 – 1.9 – 2.0 – 2.2 – 2.2, 6+). Immediately after registering a +.8 to halt three decreases in succession that accounted for a cumulative -1.0 (4.6 – 4.3 – 3.9 – 3.6, 6+), sports talk cluster-mate KNBR “The Sports Leader” spirals by one full-share (4.4 – 3.4, seventh to tenth, 6+). The San Francisco Giants flagship posted a +1.6 in April, as it reached the four-share level in San Jose (6+) for the first time since May 2017’s 4.2. The six most recent San Jose topline stats for Entercom sports talk/Oakland A’s flagship KGMZ “95.7 The Game” are 1.0 – 1.1 – 1.4 – unlisted – .6 – .8 (6+). Even though it loses the one-tenth it gained in August (6.4 – 6.5 – 6.4, 6+), all-news sibling KCBS-AM remains in second-place. Its -.8 in July curtailed four consecutive up or flat trends that netted +1.4 (5.8 – 5.8 – 6.3 – 6.4 – 7.2, 6+) and its strongest 6+ (San Jose) showing since November 2017 (7.2, as well). Bouncing back from July and August’s -1.6 (7.5 – 6.5 – 5.9, 6+) with a +.3 to 6.2 (6+), Northern California Public Broadcasting news/talk KQED progresses from sixth to fourth. Between January 2018 – June 2018, KQED and KCBS-AM finished first and second, respectively. A June increase of six-tenths by KQED followed a combined -1.9 in April and May (8.8 – 8.2 – 6.9, 6+); it was +1.0 in January.

San Jose Music Formats – As a result of three upticks in succession (1.7 – 2.2 – 2.3 – 3.4, 6+), iHeartMedia-owned KOSF “iHeart80s @ 103.7” has doubled its 6+-share (+1.7) and vaults into the top ten (#18 to #10). A July gain of seven-tenths by adult contemporary cluster-mate KISQ interrupted four straight negative trends that produced a loss of nine-tenths (4.5 – 4.4 – 4.0 – 3.7 – 3.6, 6+). In August, “98.1 The Breeze” surrendered eight-tenths, but it recaptures seven-tenths in September (3.5 – 4.2, ninth to seventh, 6+). Erasing in full August’s -.5 with a September +.6 (3.0 – 2.5 – 3.1, 6+), Univision Radio regional Mexican KSOL “Que Buena” advances from #15 to #13. Enjoying an increase of six-tenths as well are University of Southern California classical KDFC (1.8 – 2.4, #19, 6+) and Entercom urban AC KBLX (1.2 – 1.8, #22, 6+). KBLX cluster-mate, KUFX “98.5 K-Fox The South Bay’s Classic Rock,” is a collective +1.7 in three increases in a row (5.2 – 6.7 – 6.8 – 6.9, 6+) and is #1  for the third straight month. As the result of six consecutive sweeps without a loss (1.9 – 2.0 – 2.0 – 2.1 – 2.2 – 2.4 – 2.7, 6+), Cumulus Media triple A KFOG was up eight-tenths, but has that increase wiped out in full (1.9, -.8, 6+) and drifts from the top twenty (#13 to #21). After recording five gains in a row for an overall +2.1 (4.0 – 4.1 – 4.2 – 4.5 – 5.1 – 6.1, 6+), Empire Broadcasting’s KRTY “San Jose Hot Country 95.3” returns one-third of that increase (5.4, -.7, fifth to sixth, 6+). Alpha Media hot AC KEZR “Mix 106 Today’s Best Music,” which had been +.9 in three straight up or flat trends (4.0 – 4.5 – 4.9 – 4.9, 6+), is now -.9 in August and September (4.9 – 4.3 – 4.0, flat at #8, 6+).

Middlesex

Spoken-Word Formats – There is more good news for Townsquare Media news/talker WKXW “New Jersey 101.5,” which is #1 for the third month in a row and +2.0 in four straight increases (6.0 – 6.4 – 6.8 – 7.1 – 8.0, 6+). Moreover, this (8.0) is its best 6+-share since March (8.1). “New Jersey 101.5” was on top four ratings periods in succession before segueing to #2 in May. WKXW was a combined -2.1 in April and May (8.1 – 7.3 – 6.0, 6+) and posted a +.9 in January to advance from second to first with its strongest 6+-stat since April 2016’s 8.5. Up or flat for the third time in a row for a +.6 (1.7 – 2.0 – 2.0 – 2.3, 6+), iHeartMedia news/talk WOR returns to the top twenty (#22 to #20). The New York Mets flagship was off a collective six-tenths in May and June (2.3 – 1.8 – 1.7, 6+). The January – September 6+ topline for Cumulus Media news/talk WABC (flat at #25) is: 1.5 – 1.6 – 1.4 – 1.5 – 1.4 – 1.7 – 1.6 – 1.6 – 1.5.      Remaining at #10, Entercom sports talk and Yankees’ key station WFAN has its fourth Middlesex-Somerset-Union decrease in a row for a -.9 (4.4 – 4.3 – 4.2 – 3.6 – 3.5, 6+). June’s one-tenth setback halted three straight positive spikes that netted a +1.1 (3.3 – 3.4 – 4.1 – 4.4, 6+). Sports talk WEPN “98.7 ESPN New York” is up eight-tenths via three positive spikes in a row (1.7 – 1.9 – 2.1 – 2.5, #20 – #18, 6+). The March through September topline for Entercom all-news WCBS-AM (#22) is 2.9  – 2.0 – 1.8 – 1.5 – unlisted – 1.7 – 1.9 (6+). Stuck on 1.1 (6+) in March and April, all-news sibling WINS has now recorded a 1.7 (#23 to #24, 6+) for the fifth straight time. Tied with WCBS-AM at #22 is WNYC Broadcasting Foundation’s WNYC-FM, which drops two-tenths to 1.9 (6+). An August gain of three-tenths halted five straight losses (3.4 – 2.6 – 2.5 – 2.2 – 1.9 – 1.8, 6+) that accounted for a nearly 50% erosion of its 6+ share (-1.6).

Middlesex Music Formats – Off seven-tenths in July and August (5.1 – 4.8 – 4.4, 6+), iHeartMedia CHR WHTZ “Z-100” roars back with a +1.0 to 5.4 (fifth to second, 6+). Even though it notches its third increase in succession for an overall +.6 (4.1 – 4.2 – 4.5 – 4.7, 6+), classic rock cluster-mate WAXQ “Q-104.3” backslides from fourth to fifth. Faltering by eight-tenths (6.0 – 5.2, 6+), Emmis urban AC WBLS “107.5 #1 For R&B” slips from second to third. Its rhythmic CHR sibling – WQHT “Hot 97” – wipes out August’s +.3 with an August -.5 (3.8 – 4.1 – 3.6, sixth to eighth, 6+). Prior to August, “Hot” was within three-share range (6+) in each of the prior 13 sweeps. Posting identical 3.5 – 3.2 (-.3, #12 to #14, 6+) profiles are Beasley Media Group adult contemporary WMGQ “Magic 98.3 – Todays Hits & Yesterday’s Favorites,” which was down one-half share in August; Spanish Broadcasting System Spanish tropical WSKQ “La Mega 97.9,” down for the third straight time (3.9 – 3.8 – 3.5 – 3.2, 6+); and iHeartMedia urban contemporary WWPR “Power 105.1.” Despite being down for the fifth consecutive month for an overall -1.4 (4.8 – 4.6 – 4.0 – 3.9 – 3.5 – 3.4, 6+), Pillar of Fire contemporary Christian WAWZ “Star 99.1” advances from #12 to #11.

Monday, October 1, 2018

| October 1, 2018

WPEN-FM, Philadelphia Reveals New Morning and Midday Shows. A little more than a week after rumors in Philly swirled about the departure of Anthony Gargano from the morning drive show at Beasley Media Group’s sports talker WPEN-FM “97.5 The Fanatic,” the company announces its plans.  The new AM drive show is “Farzetta and Tra In the Morning” with Philly sports media personality Marc Farzetta and former Eagles star William “Tra” Thomas.  The new midday program (10:00 am to 2:00 pm) will star Anthony Gargano and current midday host Jason Myrtetus.  Both shows launch on October 8.  Farzetta currently serves as co-host of NBC Sports Philadelphia’s “Philly Sports Talk.”   Previously, he served as an associate producer for NBC’s Sunday Night Football. Farzetta and Thomas will be joined by longtime Philadelphia sports journalist and current morning show co-host Bob Cooney and producer Jamie Lynch.  Station content manager Eric Johnson says, “We are very excited to be adding Marc Farzetta and Tra Thomas to ‘The Fanatic’ lineup.  I’ve been a fan of Marc’s since he started on the air in Philly in the mid 2000s.  He’s evolved into a major talent in town, growing from update anchor and time out entertainer at Temple basketball games to radio talk show anchor and NBC Sports Philadelphia host.  Tra has a natural gift of compelling story telling.  With Anthony Gargano leading our midday show with Jason Myrtetus, these moves will put the station in a much stronger competitive position.  This really ushers in a new era for a great brand…’97.5 The Fanatic!’”

Bob Pittman to Present at Advertising Week New York. The title of this panel discussion is “An America Divided: Are We Listening?” and it takes place this afternoon at day one of Advertising Week New York (AWNY runs through Thursday).  iHeartMedia chairman and CEO Bob Pittman will host a roundtable featuring Amy Brown, co-host of the “Bobby Bones Show”; Enrique Santos, chairman and chief creative officer of iHeartLatino; WHTZ, New York-based syndicated radio star Elvis Duran; and Stephanie Ruhle, the anchor of “MSNBC Live.”  Noting that the ad business is run by those living and working mostly in Manhattan and that often skews its perspective, Pittman’s presentation addresses that fact that “the Hispanic population of America is now 18%; the African American population is now 13%; and a quarter of a billion people live outside New York and Los Angeles.  Effective marketers need to understand everyone – not just their neighbors here [in NYC].”  The panel will explore what the multiple voices are in America today, what marketers don’t understand about this audience, and the best way to reach them.

Bob Brinker Ends Weekend ‘MoneyTalk’ Program.  One of the longest-running weekend financial talk programs wrapped on Sunday (9/30) as Bob Brinker steps away from “MoneyTalk,” the program he’s been hosting for more than 32 years.  Westwood One says that Brinker has decided to spend more weekend time with his family.  He’ll continue to author his award-winning investment letter, “Marketimer.”  Brinker began his radio career as a news anchor on KYW, Philadelphia in 1966.  In 1970 he entered the investment banking business with Provident National Bank as a portfolio manager.  He began a financial investment talk show on WMCA, New York in 1981 and went syndicated with the program in 1986 via the old ABC Radio Network.  The show eventually transitioned to syndication through Westwood One.

Sales Pro Chuck Deskins Returns to iHeartMedia as SVP of Inside Sales. Sales and management pro Chuck Deskins Jr. is rejoining iHeartMedia as senior vice president of inside sales, effective immediately.  He’ll be based in St. Petersburg, Florida and will report to EVP of inside sales, James Donovan.  Deskins was most recently a partner at C3 Media but spent the majority of his career with iHeartMedia. He launched his career as an account executive with Jacor in Cincinnati and became a Clear Channel staffer when it acquired Jacor.  In his new position, Deskins will “manage iHeartMedia’s team of inside sellers and managers and create advertising opportunities for brands and iHeartMedia partners across the company’s vast array of platforms including radio broadcasting, digital, mobile, outdoor, live concerts and events and more.”  He comments, “I spent most of my career at iHeartMedia and couldn’t be more excited to help our clients tap into such a powerful combination of marketing assets.  The iHeartMedia inside sales team is the best in the business and I look forward to working with our great team of professionals.”

TALKERS News Notes. From Chicago media writer Robert Feder comes news that WSCR, Chicago sports director Brendan McCaffrey is exiting the Entercom sports talk station after 10 years there to join SiriusXM’s NFL Radio as a producer.  Feder quotes station operations director Mitch Rosen’s staff memo in which he said, “It is hard putting into words what Brendan McCaffrey has meant to ‘The Score’ for the last 10-plus years because B-Mac has done just about everything at the station and knows more about the inner workings more than anyone.  I, like many of you, will miss Brendan’s humor, wit, and most importantly his interest and care for others around him.”…..Also from Robert Feder is the reported move of urban talk WVON and regional Mexican WRLL to new offices in the South Loop.  Midway Broadcasting is moving the stations from their South Side offices to 800 South Wells Street by the end of this year.  Midway chair Melody Spann-Cooper is quoted saying, “We will miss the South Side terribly, and the sentimental value of being here can’t be overstated.  However, I am excited about the move.  Like Cumulus, WGN, the Trib and the Sun-Times, it is time for Midway to downsize for efficiency and we embrace this new chapter.”…..KXL, Portland associate producer Jackson Sager (right) is leaving his role with the Lars Larson (left) show to launch his own talk show on sister news talk KUFO “Freedom 970.”  The weekend program will air Saturdays at 7:00 am.  Sager tells TALKERS that he’s also doing podcasting and voice-over work and says the time and dedication necessary to produce the Lars Larson show wouldn’t allow him to handle his other duties as he pursues his dream of having his own talk show…..In the screen shot below of this past weekend’s “Saturday Night Live” opening skit, Salem Radio Network East Coast director of affiliate relations Jim Bligh can be seen behind and to the right of host Matt Damon as an extra.  Bligh’s second career has landed him roles in a number of New York-filmed movies as well as an extra on “SNL,” which he’s done several times.  SRN VP/news & talk programming Tom Tradup says Bligh told him, “Toughest thing was to keep from laughing at the guy lying on the floor next to me, who you can’t see, holding the Alyssa Milano pop-up on a stick!”

Well-Known Broadcasting Professional and TALKERS Exec Al Herskovitz Pens New Book.  Korean War veteran and renowned broadcasting industry “veteran” Al Herskovitz who, following his service to America, embarked upon a 68-year career in the radio business that’s still going strong, has written a new book published by TALKERS.  In The Tall, Skinny Jewish Kid with Eyeglasses from Bridgeport: A Radio Guy’s Chance Encounters with the Colorful and Famous (Talkers Books, 2018), he recalls the fascinating characters whom he met growing up in Bridgeport, Connecticut as a child of hard-working Jewish, Hungarian immigrants, a young man in the army, and a broadcaster at some of the nation’s leading radio stations.  They include show business celebrities, sports stars, politicians, mysterious international figures (including a couple of spies), and even a few mobsters!  Stories include details about the world famous movie actress who served as his babysitter before she was a star; a local radio co-worker who went on to become a quirky TV actor with a scandalous lifestyle; an articulate young man he met at a dinner party who became a present-day world leader; a major presidential candidate whose campaign he served as media consultant; and the touching story of his family’s search for relatives lost in the Holocaust.  The book also recalls numerous wild and wacky radio promotions and provocative insights into the lives of a parade of celebrities.  Herskovitz’s fascinating life in the idiosyncratic world of radio brought him into contact with an array of hundreds of figures from Kate Smith and Bob Dylan to Steve Forbes and Benjamin Netanyahu.  He writes about everything from skills he employed playing ping pong in the army recreation center to the pain of losing an officer friend accidentally blown up by a hand grenade in a war games maneuver.  It’s a story set against the backdrop of almost nine decades of American history – wars, protests, rapidly evolving pop culture and social norms – all the way to the author’s current activities on the leading edge of the digital era!  Today, pushing 90, Al remains fully engaged in the communications field and serves as senior marketing director for TALKERS.  He lives in Bradenton, Florida and is an active member of the Sarasota-based Media Round Table.  To arrange an interview with Al Herskovitz, please call Barbara Kurland at 413-565-5413.

Kavanaugh FBI Investigation, Kanye West’s ‘SNL’ Trump Speech, New U.S.-Canada-Mexico Agreement, Midterm Elections, Trump-Russia Investigation, U.S.-China Relations, Warren Re-Considers Presidential Run, California Net Neutrality Law, NFL Action, and MLB Regular Season Finale Among Top News/Talk Stories Over the Weekend.  The accusations of sexual assault against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh and the FBI’s investigation into Christine Blasey Ford’s claim; rapper Kanye West’s controversial pro-Trump speech on “SNL”; the U.S., Mexico and Canada agree to new NAFTA deal; November’s midterm elections and the battle for control of congress; the investigation into possible connections between Trump campaign operatives and Russian agents; the trade war between the U.S. and China; Senator Elizabeth Warren’s statement she’s considering running for president; the Trump administration sues California over its net neutrality law; the weekend’s NFL action and the final weekend of baseball’s regular season 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. KOST, Los Angeles morning personality Ellen K is launching The Ellen K Podcast Network designed to share “behind-the-scenes stories from Ellen K’s career and dive deeper into the stories of the day.”  The network will launch three new podcasts on iHeartRadio that will give listeners an in-depth look at what really goes on at the Ellen K shows.  Ellen K says, “I’m so excited to invite listeners into our studio through The Ellen K Podcast Network.  The opportunity to explore daily topics and everyday situations in a deeper way is thrilling to me.  I used to get in trouble in school for talking too much during class, and thanks to iHeartRadio I can continue my passion for connecting with listeners after the morning radio show is off air.”…..At Entercom’s classic hits KLUV, Dallas “98.7 K-LUV,” Jeff Miles is the new morning personality alongside Rebekah Black and David Rancken on the new “Miles in the Morning” program. Miles takes over for Jody Dean, who exits the program but will continue with KLUV in other capacities…..iHeartMedia announces the lineup for its 2nd annual ALTerEgo concert taking place on January 19 at the Forum in Los Angeles.  The bill for the event includes: Twenty One Pilots, The Killers, Muse, Weezer, Rise Against, Bishop Briggs, and The Revivalists.  iHeartMedia chief programming officer Tom Poleman says, “This will be one of the strongest alternative performance lineups to ever appear on one stage.  It’s such a strong lineup that it’s impossible to refer to any one of these incredible artists as the headliner – in fact, several of the performers have told us that it’s a show they would want to go to even if they weren’t already on the bill.”

Friday, September 28, 2018

| September 28, 2018

Talk Personalities, News/Talk Stations Finish Strong in 2018 Marconi Awards. At the 2018 RAB/NAB Radio Show last night, the winners of the 2018 Marconi Awards from the National Association of Broadcasters were announced and talk radio personalities took home four of the five Personality of the Year honors.  Premiere NetworksDan Patrick was honored with Network/Syndicated Personality of the Year; WDBO-FM, Orlando morning host Joe Kelley was named Large Market Personality of the Year; KSRO-AM, Santa Rosa morning host Pat Kerrigan received the Medium Market Personality of the Year award; and WSOY-AM, Decatur, Illinois morning host Brian Byers was honored with the Small Market Personality of the Year award.  Meanwhile, Hubbard Radio’s WTOP, Washington was named News/Talk Station of the Year; Cox Media Group’s news/talk WSB-AM/WSBB-FM, Atlanta took home the Major Market Station of the Year; Cox’s news/talk WDBO-FM, Orlando won Large Market Station of the Year; and Amaturo Sonoma Media Group’s KSRO-AM, Santa Rosa was Medium Market Station of the Year.  Entercom’s WEEI-FM, Boston was the Sports Station of the Year.  See all the winners here.

Alleged Co-Conspirator Fingers Carton in Plea Deal. According to the New York Post’s reportMichael Wright – the man alleged to be former WFAN morning host Craig Carton’s co-conspirator in the alleged concert ticket racket – told a federal judge that Carton directed him to use funds from investors to pay off Carton’s personal expenses, including gambling debts.  Wright has struck a plea deal with prosecutors to testify against Carton at his October 29 fraud trial that alleges Carton and his accomplices used $4.6 million from investors to repay other investors and to pay off debts.  The story says Wright is likely to get a 21- to 27-month sentence instead of the 20 years a conviction could carry.  Carton has maintained his innocence all along and says he expects to show that at his coming trial.

Adams Radio Group Goes with TTWN for ‘24/7 News Source.’ The deal between Total Traffic and Weather Network and Adams Radio Group calls for the former to provide its “24/7 News Source” wire service to Adams’ 24 stations operating in five markets.  The service includes news, sports, show-prep, and audio content. Adams Radio Group president and CEO Ron Stone comments, “Adams Radio Group is live, local, and focused on super-serving our listeners.  TTWN continues to innovate all aspects of its media content solutions.  We’re thrilled to leverage our new partnership with ‘24/7 News Source’ to enhance our on-air and online products.”

Seen & Heard at the Radio Show: Day 3TALKERS magazine special features correspondent Jeff McKay is in Orlando reporting from the 2018 RAB/NAB Radio Show at the Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek.  In today’s report, McKay reveals the hot topics he’s hearing discussed in the hallways of this year’s conference.  He also shares some thoughts from NAB EVP of communications Dennis Wharton on what he sees for radio over the six to 12 months.  Read his report here.

TALKERS News Notes. As part of the contract extension with award-winning journalist Don Van Natta Jr., ESPN will expand his role across its platforms, including as host of two new series slated to debut in 2019.  Van Natta will increase his contributions to ESPN’s investigative news show “Outside the Lines,” and he’s developing an interview podcast called, “The Triangle.”  Working with executive producer John Dahl, Van Natta will lead a “three-way discussion featuring provocative pairings that explore topics and shared histories with a level of depth, storytelling and, at times, conflict likely to test the comfort zones of all involved.”…..Cumulus Media’s sports talk KTCK-AM/FM, Dallas “The Ticket” extends its deal with the NHL’s Dallas Stars to continue serving as the club’s exclusive radio broadcast home.  Cumulus Houston regional vice president Dan Bennett says, “We are entering our 10th season as the flagship station of Dallas Stars hockey and we are proud to extend our relationship with the Stars for another five years. Thank you to team CEO Jim Lites for his continued faith in the Ticket to represent his great brand.”…..Pictured below is the cast of the nationally syndicated “Bob & Tom Show” performing live in North Foyer of the Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek at the 2018 Radio Show.  Host Tom Griswold and the cast, including Chick McGee, Josh Arnold, Kristi LeeDonnie Baker, Allee Breen, Al JacksonGrace Yinger and Jessica Alsman, broadcast live Wednesday through Friday morning.

WOR Morning Co-Host and New York Post Broadway Theater Critic Michael Riedel Is This Week’s Guest on Harrison Podcast.  Legendary New York Post Broadway theater critic, Michael Riedel is this week’s guest on the award-winning PodcastOne series, “The Michael Harrison Interview.”  Six months ago, Riedel was named as co-host with sports media veteran Len Berman of the WOR, New York morning show.  Together, these two well-known NYC media figures collegially discuss and dissect the hot issues of the day and interview newsmakers from a friendly left-right perspective (Riedel describes himself as an “Eisenhower Republican with a libertarian position on social issues”).  Harrison and Riedel talk about the process of doing news/talk radio in the Trump era and then take a deep dive into the world of Broadway, newspapers, and theater criticism.  Harrison states, “Michael Riedel is a fabulous conversationalist and a walking-talking history book of the fascinating universe that is Broadway and its role in almost 100 years of American popular culture.  This installment of the podcast is one of my personal favorites because it takes an intelligent and revealing look at the confluence of two of my biggest passions – radio and the theater.”  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.

Talking Content at the Alpha Media Programming PopUp. — Pictured above are Alpha Media programming execs doing a panel discussion at the company’s “Programming PopUp” — a two-day get-together held Wednesday and Thursday at HQ in Portland for some 50 Alpha programmers.  From left to right are: national director of digital content Ernie Martinez, vice president of content Phil Becker, and executive vice president of content Scott Mahalick

Kavanuagh-Ford Hearing Top News/Talk Story for Week of September 24-28.  Thursday’s hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee of testimony from accuser Christine Blasey Ford and Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh was the most-talked-about story on news/talk radio during the week, landing atop the Talkers TenTM.  At #2 this week was the investigation into possible connections between Trump campaign operatives and Russian agents.  Coming in at #3 was President Trump’s addresses at the United Nations, followed by the president’s accusation that China is trying to interfere in the U.S. elections 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. See this week’s entire chart here.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. In Philadelphia, Entercom names radio sales pro Blaise Howard general sales manager for its recent acquisition, hot AC WBEB “101.1 More FM,” effective October 1.  In a press announcement, Entercom notes that Howard led WBEB for 18 years as vice president and general manager under previous management in which he “created a culture of high performing professionals and consistently maintained the status as one of the top rated and top revenue producing stations in the Philadelphia market.”  Howard says, “I can’t wait to start this new chapter with Entercom and be a part of the team led by Dave Scopinich and David Yadgaroff.  I am excited to take a step forward with a company so positive about our industry, and so committed to the growth of radio.”…..iHeartMedia’s Seattle hip hop outlet KUBE launches the new morning program “The Wake Up Show,” effective October 1. The new show will be hosted by Strawberry, Lizette Love, Jenna and DJ Supa Sam.  Station program director Mark Adams says, “In the few months since the re-launch, Seattle listeners have responded passionately to the return of KUBE and we’re creating noise on-air, online, and on the streets. With the addition of these personalities to anchor our mornings, I’m confident ‘The Wake Up Show’ is going to shake things up.”…..Longtime St. Louis on-air personality DC is moving south to Gulf South-owned CHR WKMX, Dothan, Alabama to serve as afternoon host and brand manager.  DC, a.k.a. Christian Chymes, spent 20-plus years as one half of the “Steve & DC” team with Steve Shannon.  DC comments, “My career began in Alabama and I am so excited to be back.  I’m honored to lead the staff at such a legendary station in the market.  I was sold after meeting [station manager] Bryan Holladay and his team, as well as getting a little taste of the winning atmosphere in the building.  And great BBQ is crucial for a good quality of life!”

Thursday, September 27, 2018

| September 27, 2018

Alpha Media to Sell West Palm Beach Cluster to Hubbard Radio. The press release notes that a definitive sales contract between Alpha Media and Minneapolis-based Hubbard Radio has yet to be signed, but they have reached an agreement in principle to transfer Alpha’s six stations in the West Palm Beach market to Hubbard for a yet-to-be-disclosed sum.  Alpha says it employs about 105 people at the cluster that includes: news/talk WFTL; sports talk WMEN-AM/WIRK-HD2; adult contemporary WEAT-FM; hot AC WRMF; country WIRK-FM; and urban contemporary WMBX-FM. Alpha acquired the cluster in February of 2016 with its purchase of Digity LLC.   After the deal is consummated, Alpha will own 213 stations in 46 markets.  The company says it has been selling off assets to lower its debt leverage.

Good Karma Announces Investors in WTMJ-AM and WKTI-FM, Milwaukee Acquisition. The recently announced acquisition of E.W. Scripps’ Milwaukee duo – heritage news/talk WTMJ-AM/W277CV and country WKTI-FM – by Craig Karmazin’s Good Karma Brands LLC is being fleshed out a bit more from the financial perspective.  Good Karma announces that Wisconsin-based Morgan Murphy Media – owner of WISC-TV, Madison and WKBT-TV, La Crosse – is investing in the deal along with a group of local investors that includes: Ted Kellner, chairman and CEO of T&M Partners, LLC; Gale and Judi Klappa (Gale Klappa is chairman and chief executive of WEC Energy Group); David Marcus, CEO of Marcus Investments; and Greg Marcus, CEO of Marcus Corporation.  Morgan Murphy Media EVP and COO Brian Burns states, “Craig and his team at Good Karma Brands truly understand what it means to serve a local community.  We are excited to be in business with a group of people we’ve known for years who have an outstanding track record of success.” It’s already been announced that upon closing, Milwaukee broadcasting management pro Steve Wexler will assume the vice president and market manager role with the two stations as well as Good Karma’s sports WAUK, Waukesha “540 ESPN,” ESPN Digital, the Wisconsin Sports Awards, and the Tundra Trio.  Craig Karmazin adds, “We’re thrilled to welcome longtime friends, business partners, and members of the community to the Good Karma Brands team.  The addition of prominent local investors will further our relationship with the Milwaukee community and, paired with Steve Wexler’s leadership, will help guide our businesses to greater heights.  Good Karma’s focus has always been serving our marketing partners, fans and teammates, and today’s announcement is a huge boost for all three.”

Rich Zeoli Hosts FOX News’ Gregg Jarrett for WPHT Speaker Series. Pictured above is WPHT, Philadelphia afternoon drive host Rich Zeoli (left) with FOX News legal analyst Gregg Jarrett (right) after Zeoli interviewed Jarrett at the sold-out WPHT Speaker Series live event that included a discussion of Jarrett’s book The Russia Hoax.

Seen & Heard at the Radio Show: Day 2.  The National Association of Broadcasters reports that attendance at this year’s 2018 RAB/NAB Radio Show is up 8% with 2,130 persons registered.  TALKERS magazine special features correspondent Jeff McKay is in Orlando reporting from Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek.  McKay says that monetizing podcasting, the connected car, the state of news/talk radio and more were topics of discussion.  Read his report here.

TALKERS News Notes. From a report in Variety comes news that FOX News is unveiling a new tagline for its subscription service FOX Nation: “Opinion Done Right.”  The story says, “The slogan would suggest the new service, said to be aimed at FOX News ‘superfans,’ will emphasize the opinion programming that brings top ratings to the 21st Century FOX cable news network’s primetime lineup.”  FOX TV will promote the new service during tonight’s “Thursday Night Football” broadcast…..The NBA’s Boston Celtics and Beasley Media Group’s WBZ-FM, Boston “98.5 The Sports Hub” announce a multi-year extension for the station to continue serving as the official flagship for the club’s radio broadcasts.  Sean Grande and Cedric Maxwell continue their play-by-play duties while Celtics general manager and president of operations Danny Ainge will appear on the “Toucher & Rich Show” Thursday mornings at 9:00 during the season and head coach Brad Stevens will join “Zolak & Bertrand” each Wednesday around 12:00 noon…..The Briscoe Center for American History at the University of Texas acquires the papers of reporter and columnist Paul Colford – a journalist who, in addition to numerous accomplishments, wrote biographies of Rush Limbaugh and Howard Stern.  During his career, Colford reported for New York Newsday and the New York Daily News and served as vice president for media relations at the Associated Press.  The papers include considerable research materials on the subjects of his biographies, The Rush Limbaugh Story (1993) and Howard Stern: King of All Media (1996).  Colford says, “As a media columnist and biographer, I’ve often found gold and indispensable details in libraries and archives around the country, including the Briscoe Center.  I’m honored and thrilled to know my files, photos, clippings, and other documents will be preserved and made available before long to media historians, students, and other journalists for their work in years to come.”  The Briscoe Center’s news media holdings include the papers of New York newspapermen Jack Newfield and Wayne Barrett, as well as those of social columnists Walter Winchell and Liz Smith…..ESPN senior writer Mina Kimes agrees to a multiyear extension with the sports media giant.  Along with news of the signing comes the launch of her NFL-themed podcast, “Bootleg with Mina Kimes.”  Kimes continues to write for ESPN The Magazine as well as continuing to appear on shows such as “Around the Horn”; as a co-host on “The Morning Roast on ESPN Radio with Domonique Foxworth and Clinton Yates”; guesting on “The Dan Le Batard Show with Stugotz” and “Highly Questionable”; as a debater on “First Take”; as a contributor to “E:6”; appearances on “Get Up”; and more…..iHeartMedia, in collaboration with HowStuffWorks, is launching a new, original podcast on October 3 called, “Unobscured,” that focuses on the Salem witch trials.  Aaron Mahnke – host of the popular podcast “Lore” – is hosting “Unobscured.”…..California-based not-for-profit Christian broadcaster Educational Media Foundation is acquiring another Chicagoland signal – this time it’s WCPT-FM, DeKalb from WDEK Inc – and the purchase price is $1.6 million.  Bob Heymann of the Chicago office of Media Services Group served as the exclusive broker.  If you recall, EMF was the recent surprise buyer of heritage Windy City FM WLUP, for which it paid $21.5 million.  WCPT-FM has been airing progressive talk, also heard on WCPT-AM, Willow Springs, Illinois…..SiriusXM is airing live, hole-by-hole coverage of the 2018 Ryder Cup tomorrow through Sunday from Le Golf National near Paris.  Listeners will hear a combination of SiriusXM’s exclusive broadcast featuring calls by Earl Forcey, Mark CarnevaleFred Albers, John Maginnes and Carl Paulson, as well as the IMG-produced broadcast led by longtime European golf broadcaster Richard Kaufman.  After each day’s play, listeners will hear post-match shows hosted by SiriusXM’s Taylor Zarzour, John Maginnes and Ron Green…..Pictured below are some of the participants on the Wednesday Headliner Session at the 2018 RAB/NAB Radio Show at the Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek.  The panel, moderated by PodcastOne founder and chairman Norm Pattiz, was titled, “The Podcast Boom.”  From left to right are: Elaina Smith, co-host, “NASH Nights Live”; singer-songwriter Jewel; Suzanne Grimes, president, Westwood One and EVP, corporate marketing, Cumulus Media; and Kaitlyn Bristowe from television’s “The Bachelorette.”

Kavanaugh Hearing, Trump-Russia Investigation/Rosenstein Status, Trump’s China Election Interference Accusation/Press Conference, China Trade War, Midterm Elections, Fed Hikes Interest Rates, NFL Action, and MLB Playoff Push Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (9/26). Today’s Senate hearing for the accusation made by Christine Blasey Ford against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh; the investigation into possible connections between Trump campaign operatives and Russian agents and the related status of Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein; President Trump’s claim during his UN speech that China is trying to interfere with U.S. elections and the president’s subsequent press conference; the tariffs being placed on U.S. and Chinese goods; the November midterm elections and which party will control congress; the Fed raises interest rates again and speculation about the strength of the U.S. economy; NFL action; and the Major League Baseball playoff push were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. Another entrant into the world of podcasting is iHeartMedia personality Mario Lopez.  iHeartRadio and iHeartMedia Networks Group president Darren Davis says that the “iHeartRadio Countdown” host will launch a new podcast network this fall that will be available on the iHeartRadio Podcast Network platform.  The network will feature several iHeartRadio Original podcasts including an up-close-and-personal look into the life of Mario Lopez.  He’ll also executive produce an additional slate of podcasts to roll out in the near future…..Air personality Heather Davis joins Curtis Media’s country WQDR, Raleigh to host middays and serve as APD and music director.  She comes to Curtis from Cumulus Media’s WKDF, Nashville…..At E.W. Scripps’ rock KQXR, Boise “100.3 The X,” morning personalities Jeremy “Nic” Nicolato and Jeremi “Big J” Schlader sign new, two-year deals to continue hosting “The Morning After.”  Nic, who also serves as program director, says, “It’s an honor to wake up every morning and deliver this show to the Treasure Valley.  Knowing we will be able to mark 13 years of doing it feels fantastic.”

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

| September 26, 2018

New Morning Host Greg Tish Takes Over on WVFT, Tallahassee. At WVFT, Tallahassee “Real Talk 93.3,” operator Magic Broadcasting II names Greg Tish the new morning host after declining to renew the contract of former morning personality Greg Marr Jr.  According to a story at Tallahassee.com, the new show, “Real Mornings with Greg Tish and Bobby Mac,” will focus less on politics than Marr Jr.’s “Voice of Freedom Today” program.  WVFT station manager Jon Jopling is quoted saying, “We are going to be intellectually honest and locally relevant.  It’s going to be more interesting and more thought provoking. We want to engage listeners on a higher level.”  Tish has been employed for the past 19 years with the Florida Sheriff’s Association.  He is described in the piece as a “partially retired DJ and man-about-town socialite.”

PodcastOne Sportsnet Beefs Up Offerings with Nine New Shows. These new programs now available on the PodcastOne Sportsnet platform are from The Pro Football Focus Network, The Underdog Network, The Collider Network, RealGM, and Natalie Eva Marie. PodcastOne chairman and CEO Norman Pattiz says, “As a full-service sports network totally focused on podcasts, plus up-to-date coverage of live events and major sporting events from around the world, these new inclusions from our podcasting partners further signal our commitment to sports and maintaining our leadership position.” New shows include “The PFF NFL Show” with Steve Palazzolo and Sam Monson; “The Underdog” with Chris Horwedel and writer Anshu Khanna; “You’re Wrong and Here’s Why”; “Tales from the Association”; “Collider Sports”; “RealGM Radio Football” with Jeff Risdon; and “The Natalie Eva Marie Show.”

NAB/RAB Radio Show Happening Now in Orlando — The 2018 installment of the annual “Radio Show” produced and presented by the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) and the Radio Advertising Bureau (RAB) kicked off yesterday (9/26) in Orlando, FL and will run through Friday (9/28) at the dual location of the Hilton Bonnet Creek and the Waldorf-Astoria Orlando.  TALKERS special features correspondent Jeff McKay is on the scene providing first-hand coverage of the event and conducting interviews with speakers and attendees.  Read his coverage here.  McKay (on crutches due to a recent knee injury) is pictured below in front of one of the convention’s promotional posters that adorn the hallways and public spaces of the radio industry gathering.

Edison Teases ‘Share of Ear’ Data; Estimates SiriusXM-Pandora Market Share.  Tomorrow at the RAB/NAB Radio Show, Edison Research will unveil data from its 2018 “Share of Ear” study.  In advance of that, the company teases some of the findings, including that “in-car is the top listening location in the U.S. for all audio.”  That’s probably not a surprising statistic to radio pros, but the research puts some figures on that conclusion.  Edison says, “In any given day, nearly everyone in the U.S. will consume at least some audio, and on average, people age 13 and older spend four hours per day listening to music, news, personalities, and sports…70% of Americans age 13 and older listen to audio in a car each day – higher even than the portion who listen to audio at home.”  In a separate press release, Edison comments on the proposed acquisition of Pandora by SiriusXM saying that its research indicates that if the deal is consummated, the new company would deliver 12% of all audio consumed in the U.S.

Beasley Media Group Presents Dr. Shawn DuBravac at Radio Show — The appearance by best-selling author Dr. Shawn DuBravac came at the Beasley Media Group-sponsored “Evening of Dinner and Disruption” event held last night (9/25).  DuBravac discussed transformative innovation, including smart cities, AI, data, and the opportunities for radio in the future.  Pictured above (from l-r) are: DuBravac, Beasley CEO Caroline Beasley, COO/EVP Brian Beasley, and president Bruce Beasley.

Westwood One’s Kevin Harlan Gives Advice to Future Broadcasters – At the Westwood One-sponsored presentation by “Monday Night Football” announcer Kevin Harlan (right), he spoke with a large group of 2018 Radio Show Student Scholars about the business of radio broadcasting.  Harlan shared stories and offered advice to the students.  He’s pictured above with University of Indianapolis student broadcaster Mallory Moreno (left).  “The Student Scholar Kick-off with Kevin Harlan” was hosted by Westwood One Sports EVP/executive producer Howard Deneroff.

Harrison: Corporate Media Will Stop Catering to Targeted Audience Biases Only If It Sees Ratings and Revenue in Journalistic Objectivity. TALKERS publisher Michael Harrison appeared as a guest on CNN’s Headline News Channel (HLN) yesterday (9/25) on “Across America with Carol Costello” to share his take on Brett Kavanaugh’s FOX News interview the night before (9/24).  As the conversation delved into the widespread practice of news organizations catering to target audience mindsets, Costello asked Harrison if he thinks any minds would be changed by Kavanaugh’s historically unusual FOX News appearance.  Harrison responded with the cynical observation, “I don’t think anything changes minds anymore.  We’re in a very strange impasse and I think it’s corroding our democracy.  I do hope that we eventually get to the point where it’s a little more fluid, where people are a bit more open-minded and that the media in general is a little bit more independent of adhering to its political flavor.  I guess the only way the media will ever get to that point will be if the media thinks it is in their interests to be that way – that you can actually get ratings and revenue and build an audience by not preaching to choirs.  But right now, we’re really in a quagmire of partisanship and polarized reporting where even media people who think they’re objective find themselves succumbing to the temptation to preach to their audience’s biases.”  Harrison went on to say that he does not hold FOX solely responsible for this type of positioning and insinuated that it is practiced to one degree or another by outlets all across the political spectrum including CNN and even TALKERS.

Trump UN Speech, Kavanaugh Sexual Assault Allegations, Trump-Russia Investigation/Rosenstein Status, Midterm Elections, U.S.-China Tensions, Bill Cosby Sentenced, NFL Action, and MLB Playoff Push Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (9/25). Tuesday’s UN address by President Trump, including his warnings to Iran; the sexual assault allegations against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh; the investigation into possible connections between Trump campaign operatives and Russian agents, and the related status of Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein; the coming midterm elections; the tense relationship between the U.S. and China over tariffs and weapons sales; entertainment icon Bill Cosby is sentenced to 3-10 years in prison for sexual assault; the week’s NFL activities; and the Major League Baseball playoffs push were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. In Boston, iHeartMedia names Rebekah “Bex” Maroun executive producer and co-host on CHR WXKS-FM’s “Matty In The Morning, effective October 1. She joins the program alongside well-known on-air personalities Matt Siegel, Billy Costa, and Lisa Donovan. She assumes the role previously held by Medha Gandhi, who recently joined the syndicated “Elvis Duran & The Morning Show.”  “Kiss 108” program director Dylan Sprague comments, “Bex’s chemistry with the Matty team was obvious at our first meeting.  Couple that with her magnetic personality and producing experience and it was really an easy choice.”  She was most recently an air personality and producer at Entercom’s hot AC WTDY…..BMI announces it has re-elected six members of its board of directors during the company’s annual meeting of shareholders.  The following have been elected to new three-year terms: Caroline Beasley, CEO, Beasley Media Group, LLC; Amador Bustos, president and CEO, Bustos Media Holdings, LLC; Michael Fiorile, current chairman, BMI board of directors; chairman and CEO, The Dispatch Printing Company; and chairman and CEO, Dispatch Broadcast Group; Bill Hoffman, president, Hoffman Communications, Inc. and retired president, Cox Media Group; Catherine Hughes, founder and chairperson, Urban One, Inc.; and Jerry Kersting, former president, Tribune Broadcasting and past EVP/CFO, Clear Channel Radio.…..In Miami, Entercom adds Melissa Maxx to the air staff of alternative WSFS “104.3 The Shark” to host the 7:00 pm to 12:00 midnight show. She takes over for Erin Lee, who remains with the station to handle weekends and fill-ins…..At company headquarters in Portland this week, Alpha Media programmers are meeting for the first-ever “Alpha Media Programming Pop-Up.”  Fifty of Alpha’s content directors from around the country are taking part in a two-day forum.  The company says the goal is to “motivate and educate Alpha’s brand leaders by providing interaction with and information from some of the industry’s top executives and celebrity influencers.  Meetings and presentations are taking place today and tomorrow at Alpha’s theater located at the corporate offices.  Pictured below at Tuesday evening’s rooftop cocktail party are (from l-r): Alpha EVP of programming Scott Mahalick, Republic Records’ Sharon Dastur, Republic’s Gary Spangler, Alpha VP of content Phil Becker, Republic artist Mike Posner, Republic’s Brett Dumler, Republic’s Mike DePippa, and model/TV personality Kim Stolz.

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

| September 25, 2018

It’s a New Deal for Cumulus Programmer Bill Hess.  Programming pro Bill Hess and Cumulus Media sign a new, multi-year contract extension.  Hess is the company’s vice president of news/talk, program director for WMAL-AM/FM, Washington, and operations manager for the Washington, DC cluster.  During his 41-year career, Hess has programmed WTEM, Washington; WHJJ, Providence; and WHYN-AM/FM, Springfield, Massachusetts. He served as SVP of programming for Air America Media and has programmed music outlets WASH and WBIG in Washington.  Cumulus Media Washington VP/market manager Jake McCann says, “This is an exciting time for news/talk in our nation’s capital and we have the privilege of being led by one of the strongest program directors in the country.  Under Bill Hess’ leadership and hands-on approach, WMAL has consistently grown ratings.  He works daily with on-air staff to guarantee they are delivering a top-level product to their audience.”

Stone Canyon Buys Northern Arizona Station Group. This deal has three broadcast management pros organized as Stone Canyon Radio and Marketing, LLC buying four Northern Arizona signals from Grenax II Broadcasting for an as yet undisclosed sum.  The stations are: news/talk KBTK-FM/K246AA “97.1 The Big Talker,” country KSED “107.5 KOLT Country,” classic rock KWMX “The Wolf-Classic Rock 96.7,” and 80s rock KFLX “Rewind 92.5/104.1.”  Stone Canyon’s principals are former Cherry Creek Media CEO Joe Schwartz (left), Emmis SVP John Beck (right), and Withers Broadcasting and Dana Communications president Dana Withers (center).  Schwartz states, “This is a wonderful opportunity for three veteran broadcasters to pool our years of broadcast experience to create exceptional programming, on-the-street marketing, top digital assets, and to bring the best advertising services available to the Flagstaff-Prescott area. In addition, I can’t wait to work with current VP & general manager Stan Pierce and his team.”  Schwartz will be relocating to the Flagstaff area to work with the cluster team and Beck and Withers will remain in their current positions in St. Louis and Mt. Vernon, respectively.  The start of an LMA is expected to be announced in the near future.

WMAL’s Mary Walter to Host Fisher House Foundation’s Talk Radio Special. The Fisher House Foundation’s annual talk radio special, “Home Away from Home – The Fisher House Story,” is being hosted this year by WMAL-AM/FM, Washington morning co-host Mary Walter.   The Fisher House Foundation and The Jeff Wyatt Group are producing the program for talk stations around the country to be aired any time from Veterans Day (11/11) through the holidays.  Regular TALKERS readers are aware that the Fisher House program provides “a home away from home” for families of patients receiving medical care at major military and VA medical centers.  The homes provide temporary, free lodging so families can be close to their loved ones during a medical crisis.  This year’s three-hour radio special will feature stories of our nation’s heroes, families who serve by their side, and how Fisher House plays a role in their journey.  Show producer Jeff Wyatt says Mary Walter’s love of the military will add to the quality of the program.  “Her talent, well known support for our military, and broad base of listening across the U.S. makes her a great fit to support our wounded, injured, and ill service members and their families.”  Stations interested in the program can contact Wyatt at: jw@thejeffwyattgroup.com

TALKERS News Notes. Rhode Island talk radio host John DePetro is celebrating 20 years on talk radio in the Ocean State this month. DePetro says that he was working part-time air shifts on WABC, New York while also serving as national sales manager for WABC and sister WPLJ when he was offered a weekend show on WHJJ, Providence in his home state.  After a few months, he took over the full-time job of mid-morning host on WHJJ in January of 1999.  He currently is heard in Rhode Island on WNRI, Woonsocket, Rhode Island.…..iHeartMedia announces the fruit of its partnership with technology platform creators Jelli and Foursquare is a new attribution product for broadcast radio that will offer marketers “a unique combination of iHeartMedia’s massive reach and Jelli’s programmatic buying capabilities, with the attribution and insights tools from location technology company Foursquare.”  iHeartMedia says this is the next step in its effort to make radio easier to buy and measure. It says it “invested in Jelli’s programmatic platform to make the purchase of data driven radio campaigns as easy as digital, and now with the addition of Foursquare, more in-depth campaign measurement and real-world attribution data is now available to advertisers who buy via Jelli’s demand side platform SpotPlan.”  iHM president of revenue and data operations Brian Kaminsky adds, “This initiative with Foursquare and Jelli is the next evolution in the development of our platform, providing retailers and QSRs the same measurement and accountability for broadcast radio as Google is in search and Facebook is in social.”…..Entercom and Telemundo’s KTMD-TV, Houston announce a multi-platform media partnership that includes distribution of content across all partner channels, including KTMD-TV and Entercom’s Houston stations sports talk KILT-AM “Sports Radio 610” and KIKK “CBS Sports Radio 650,” plus country KILT-FM, Spanish KLOL, and hot AC KHMX.  Content will also be distributed across each entity’s websites and social media platforms. Entercom Houston SVP and market manager Sarah Frazier says, “We are excited to partner with Telemundo and further serve our community with enhanced coverage.  We’re looking forward to continue bringing our listeners improved access and coverage of live, local news.”…..Sun & Fun Media announces it has hired Tim Closson to join the company as a senior AE.  He was previously manager of affiliate sales for country & sports at Westwood One.  Sun & Fun Media offers a “suite of products and services designed to increase sales, improve ratings, and reduce expenses for 100% barter.”…..Donna Hardwick is appointed chief marketing officer for PRX, the public media program supplier that recently merged with PRI.  Hardwick was most recently senior director of communications & distribution for ITVS.

Kavanaugh Assault Allegations/Cruz Restaurant Protest, Trump-Russia Investigation/Rosenstein’s Status, Midterm Elections, U.S.-China Trade War, Iran Threatens Attacks, NFL Action, and MLB Playoff Push Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (9/24). The allegations of sexual assault against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh and the related restaurant protest that forced Senator Ted Cruz and his wife to leave; the investigation into possible connections between Trump campaign operatives and Russian agents and the related uncertainty over the status of Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein; the coming midterm elections; the trade war between the U.S. and China; Iran’s threats against Saudi Arabia, Israel, and the U.S. after the deadly attacks on its military parade; the weekend’s NFL action; and the Major League Baseball playoff push were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. In the Charlotte market, Beasley Media Group announces promotions at urban contemporary WBAV “V 101.9” and hip hop WPEG “Power 98.”  Brian “Mr. Incognito” Robinson is upped to program director for both stations.  He was most recently APD for WPEG and previously held the music director, afternoon drive host, and morning drive co-host positions.  At the same time, the company bumps Janine Davis up from traffic correspondent for both stations to midday personality at “V 101.9.”  Nikki “Ya Girl Nikki” Davis rises from evening host to afternoon drive personality on “Power 98.” Finally, John Reynolds is promoted to operations manager for the entire cluster.  Reynolds most recently served as the program director and operations manager at CHR WNKS “KISS 95.1” and Adult contemporary WKQC “K 104.7.”  Beasley Charlotte VP and market manager Bill Schoening comments, “John is an exceptional leader and very committed to the success of all of our Beasley Media Group Charlotte radio stations. I am looking forward to seeing him continue to build our strong brands for many years to come.”…..The Envision Networks-syndicated “Collin Raye’s Rewind Country” adds new affiliate stations WVWF-FM, Waverly, Tennessee and WPAY-FM, Garrison, Kentucky.  “Rewind Country” is a daily, one-minute vignette that “highlights amazing stories behind the greatest country hits, shared by Raye and friends such as Dolly Parton, John Michael Montgomery, and Lorrie Morgan…..ABC Radio, Skyview Networks, and Front and Center Entertainment are introducing radio versions of the PBS programs “The Front and Center Sessions”  — for country stations — and “The Speakeasy Sessions” for rock outlets.  Both series will feature 12, two-hour programs that are being produced exclusively for ABC Radio’s distribution.  ABC Radio VP and general manager Steve Jones says, “We are excited to work with today’s greatest performers in country and classic rock music.  We’re taking a wealth of content and weaving it into fast-paced radio programming that features great music and riveting behind-the-scenes stories and never-before-shared anecdotes from some of the biggest country and rock stars.”…..Westwood One is launching a new urban morning show on its 24/7 network starring former WHQT, Miami “Hot 105 FM” personality Rick Party (right) and former WALR, Atlanta “Kiss 104.1” jock Sasha the Diva (left). Comedian Benji Brown is also named as part of the cast.  WWO says it has 20-plus stations initially lined up to carry the program that is targeted to females 35-44.

Monday, September 24, 2018

| September 24, 2018

Nielsen Audio Announces Monthly Reporting for Diary Markets Starting in July of 2019. This is a move that broadcasters in diary markets have been waiting for.  Ratings giant Nielsen Audio announces it will “transform the measurement of markets that are measured with the audio diary from a quarterly or two times a year view to year-round measurement with monthly reporting.  This more dynamic measurement solution enables clients to see seasonal shifts and react more quickly to marketplace changes.  With this transition, radio will be able to find new insights and tell its reach story to advertisers each month.”  The implementation of Continuous Diary Measurement will begin in phases with the first starting in July 2019 in the markets currently measured four times a year.  The current four-book markets will convert to 12 currency releases that will comprise three months of data starting with the May/June/July 2019 report period.  Effective with July 2019, approximately 70% of radio’s ad spend will be reported monthly by Nielsen Audio.  Company managing director Brad Kelly says, “Big billion-dollar advertisers leave nothing to chance.  Every decision they make is data driven and updated audience data is crucial for timely decisions.  Nielsen Audio is excited to help diary market clients have a better understanding of the audio landscape and respond faster to dynamic market conditions. Continuous Diary Measurement will help radio reinforce its compelling reach story more often and provide fresh radio data to fuel marketing mix models — the decision tools big advertisers rely on to allocate budgets and evaluate the effect of their ad spend.”  Nielsen plans to deliver monthly reports, covering six months of data in markets with at least 1,000 metro in-tab, and monthly reports covering 12 months of data in the smallest markets.  Currently, Nielsen reports larger diary markets four times a year (winter, spring, summer and fall), mid-sized diary markets twice a year in the spring and fall and the smallest markets with two book averages of Spring/Fall and Fall/Spring.

SiriusXM to Acquire Pandora.  Satellite radio broadcaster SiriusXM announces that it is acquiring internet pure-play Pandora in an all-stock deal valued at about $3.5 billion.  According to today’s statement, Pandora owners will get 1.44 shares of SiriusXM stock for each Pandora share they own.  Both companies issued brief financial statements within the announcement. SiriusXM reiterates its previous outlook of 1.15 million new, self-pay subscribers and an adjusted EBITDA of $2.17 billion for the year.  Pandora reports expected Q3 revenue to be $390 million to $405 million.  SiriusXM says of the deal, “The combination creates the world’s largest audio entertainment company, with more than $7 billion in expected pro-forma revenue in 2018 and strong, long-term growth opportunities.”  SiriusXM says it plans no immediate change in listener offerings but adds that it can “capitalize on cross-promotion opportunities” and leverage its “exclusive content and programming with Pandora’s ad-supported and subscription tiers to create unique audio packages, while also utilizing SiriusXM’s extensive automotive relationships to drive Pandora’s in-car distribution.”  SiriusXM CEO Jim Meyer comments, “We have long respected Pandora and their team for their popular consumer offering that has attracted a massive audience and have been impressed by Pandora’s strategic progress and stronger execution.  We believe there are significant opportunities to create value for both companies’ stockholders by combining our complementary businesses.  The addition of Pandora diversifies SiriusXM’s revenue streams with the U.S.’s largest ad-supported audio offering, broadens our technical capabilities, and represents an exciting next step in our efforts to expand our reach out of the car even further.  Through targeted investments, we see significant opportunities to drive innovation that will accelerate growth beyond what would be available to the separate companies, and does so in a way that also benefits consumers, artists, and the broader content communities.  Together, we will deliver even more of the best content on radio to our passionate and loyal listeners, and attract new listeners, across our two platforms.”

Beasley Promotes Buzz Knight to EVP of Strategy and Innovation. Programmer Buzz Knight is promoted from his vice president of programming position to executive vice president of strategy and innovation, effective immediately.  Knight came into the Beasley Media Group organization with the company’s acquisition of Greater Media in 2016.  In his new role, he will be responsible for the company’s existing and future strategic initiatives, along with new opportunities that innovate and diversify its portfolio.  Knight says, “These are transformative times in the company and the media industry.  Beasley Media Group is committed to pursuing and embracing strategy and innovation.  I am grateful to have the opportunity to be a part of helping to shape the company’s next exciting chapter!”

WTAM, Cleveland Adds ‘Geraldo in Cleveland’ Program and Begins 106.7 FM Simulcast. Heritage Cleveland news/talk WTAM unveils a number of programming additions that take effect today (9/24), starting with the AM station’s addition of translator W295DE at 106.7 FM to the station’s signal.  Also, American news and talk icon Geraldo Rivera is launching at daily, one-hour program on WTAM called “Geraldo in Cleveland” that airs at 9:00 am.  The iHeartMedia station says the program will address “a range of local and national headlines, including the latest business, political, and pop culture news.”  Rivera says in a press release, “Cleveland is my home now and so is WTAM.  History put me here by random chance and now I am a part of this great city where I fell in love with my wife of 15 years, Erica Rivera.  I will continue to work on a national level with FOX News [as correspondent-at-large], and I look forward to sharing conversations and perspective locally with you every day.  This is just the beginning of what I hope will be a long relationship with WTAM, iHeartMedia, and most importantly – YOU.”  Also at WTAM, the station adds former Cleveland Indians pitcher and current Indians TV broadcaster Jensen Lewis to the afternoon daypart as co-host of the 6:00 pm sports show “Sports Feed 2.0” with Mike Trivisonno and Nick Camino.  Finally, longtime station personalities Bill Wills – co-host of the morning drive show – and afternoon drive personality Mike Trivisonno have once again renewed their agreements with WTAM, both signing multi-year contract extensions.  Wills will continue his 20-year tenure as anchor of morning drive and Trivisonno will extend his 22-year reign as afternoon drive on-air personality.

Report: Gargano Off Mornings at WPEN-FM.  According to a report by Rob Tornoe at Philly.com, Beasley Broadcast Group’s sports talk WPEN-FM “97.5 The Fanatic” is removing Anthony Gargano from his post as host of the morning show and set to replace him is NBC Sports Philadelphia (and former crosstown WIP) personality Marc Farzetta. The story says it’s unclear if current morning show cast members Bob Cooney and producer Jamie Lynch will remain with the new lineup. WPEN has not responded publicly to the report.  Gargano left Entercom’s crosstown sports talker WIP in 2015 to take the WPEN gig.  Gargano is still listed as morning host on the station’s website and spots with his voice are still airing.

‘Savage Nation’ Reinvented for the New Year; One-Hour Radio Show and One-Hour Podcast to Replace Current Show. Starting in January, Michael Savage and Westwood One transition his current three-hour, syndicated talk show into two separate entities – a one-hour version of “The Savage Nation” radio show and a new, original podcast (that will also be available for radio broadcast).  Savage currently releases a podcast version of his radio show.  This new podcast will be original content.  Savage states, “As I move into the next phase of my 25-year radio career I hope to bring even more listeners to the medium of audio with ‘The Savage Nation.’  I will be free to innovate in unique ways on my podcast.  The flexibility of the platform will permit me to expand my storytelling and insights into politics, books, food, cars, and rock and roll.  I’m going to change the way talk radio is spoken and consumed.”  WWO adds that the combination of podcast and broadcast will fuel the audience for both shows, saying Savage will cross-promote across “The Savage Nation” radio show and podcast, which will also be heavily promoted by Westwood One Podcast Network.

Westwood One to Produce New, Two-Hour Ben Shapiro Radio Show. A lot has been made about making conservative media figure and Daily Wire editor-in-chief Ben Shapiro’s podcast available to broadcast radio stations. But, the real innovation in today’s news about Westwood One’s new, two-hour radio show being made available to news/talk stations is that the national spots will be restricted to a “limited number of powerful live reads” just as Shapiro does on his podcast.  The new Ben Shapiro show will air live from 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm ET and debut in January. Shapiro says, “I grew up on talk radio and cut my teeth there.  There’s no medium that allows the exchange of ideas and the explanation of detailed narratives better than talk radio and I can’t wait to bring two more live hours to listeners across the country.  And we’re going to bring the values of podcasts – islands of advertising surrounded by oceans of content – to talk radio, too, merging the best of both worlds. Westwood One is a tremendously innovative partner, and I can’t wait to get started!”

RAB/NAB Radio Show Gets Underway This Week in Orlando.  The 2018 Radio Show opens in Orlando tomorrow (9/25).  Radio consultant Holland Cooke offers a little teaser about Edison Research’s “Share of the Ear” study that will be released at the Radio Show this year.  He also has some insight on the new Echo Auto.  Read his piece here.  Among the numerous happenings at this year’s confab is a live broadcast of “The Bob & Tom Show” Wednesday through Friday.  The broadcasts will take place in the North Foyer of the Hilton Orlando Bonnet Creek and will feature special guests; Frank Caliendo, Drew Hastings, Pat Godwin, and Greg Hahn.

Kavanaugh Assault Allegations, Trump-Russia Investigation/Rosenstein Status, Midterm Elections, New Illegal Population Study, U.S.-China Trade War, Deadly Iran Parade Attack, NFL Action, and MLB Playoff Push Among Top News/Talk Stories Over the Weekend.This week’s scheduled testimony from Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh and his accuser, Christine Blasey Ford, and the new allegation from Kavanaugh’s Yale years; President Trump’s attacks on the Russia investigation and speculation about Deputy AG Rod Rosenstein’s job security; the coming midterm elections; a new illegal population study that declares real illegal population is 22 million – double previous estimates; the escalating placement of tariffs on goods by the U.S. and China; the attack on an Iranian military parade being blamed by Iran on the U.S. and Israel; the weekend’s NFL Action and the Major League Baseball playoff push 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. In Las Vegas, Beasley Media Group names Kris Fisher the new brand manager for rhythmic oldies KOAS “Old School 105.7” and hot AC KVGS “STAR 107.”   Fisher was most recently PD at the company’s hip hop WCHZ.  Beasley Las Vegas vice president and general manager Dennis Gwiazdon comments, “We’re thrilled that Kris will be joining our team in Las Vegas.  After a lengthy nationwide search, it is especially gratifying to be able to promote someone from within our company.  “HD98.3” and “Hot 95.5/ 93.1” have achieved some of their highest ratings under his direction.  I’m looking forward to watching Kris work his magic for us here!”…..The nationally syndicated “DeDe in the Mornings” show is being added to the program schedule at iHeartMedia’s WHTY-FM, Columbus, Georgia “Hot 100.”  Compass Media Networks officially launched “DeDe in the Mornings” in partnership with Service Broadcasting’s “K104” in Dallas on July 16.  The program is also heard on WJMR-FM, Milwaukee; KATJ-HD2/K242CS, Victorville, California “HD 96.3”; and more…..Chicago on-air pro Brian Peck is named evening personality on Cumulus Media’s classic hits WLS-FM.  Peck has recently shared evening hosting duties with fellow WLS personalities Tom O’Toole and Danny Lake.  They will continue with their weekend shows along with Erin Carmen and Abby Ryan. Peck arrived in Chicago in 1992 as a morning co-host on WKQX “Q101.”  He’s also worked at WTMX, WSHE, and WJMK.

Friday, September 21, 2018

| September 21, 2018

iHeartMedia’s Fourth Chapter 11 Re-Org Does the Trick. When it comes to eliminating billions of dollars of debt in a Chapter 11 re-organization, someone is not going to be happy with what they get (or don’t get). Certain debt holders are likely to feel they’re not getting what they deserve.  But Houston Bankruptcy Court Judge Marvin Isgur liked what he saw enough to approve iHeartMedia’s fourth crack at its Joint Chapter 11 Re-Organization Plan.  Yesterday’s approval of the adequacy of the disclosure statement sets the stage for more deadlines and court dates as iHeartMedia still hopes to exit Chapter 11 by the end of this year.  The deadline for voting on this plan is set at November 9.  The Plan Objection deadline is November 28.  A pre-trial conference is set for December 7 and the Confirmation Hearing is set for December 11.

Hannity Talks with President Trump in Las Vegas. The screenshot above is from FOX News Channel and the “Hannity” show’s coverage of President Trump’s rally in Las Vegas last night (9/20).  After the president addressed the crowd he spoke with host Sean Hannity about a number of issues, including the allegation against Supreme Court nominee Brett KavanaughRobert Mueller’s Russia investigation, and the midterm elections.

iHeartMedia Adds FM Translator to WLAC, Nashville; Expands Steve Gill Reports. Nashville news/talker WLAC has an FM presence now that iHeartMedia adds translator W252CM at 98.3 FM to WLAC’s broadcast.  The station is also being transmitted on WSIX-FM’s HD-2 signal.  As the company says, the 250-watt translator is heard “across the southern portions of the Nashville area, including Williamson County and the Franklin area.” The translator had been carrying country WSIX-FM’s broadcast.  At the same time, the station announces that it is expanding the “Tennessee Star Report” so that the Steve Gill-hosted program now airs from 5:00 am to 8:00 am.  Tennessee Star executive editor Michael Patrick Leahy co-hosts the program with Gill, who comments, “It’s been great being back on the air in Nashville over these last few weeks.  Adding a big booming FM signal on WLAC will be a great opportunity for us to reach voters in the final month of this election season and we will be right in the thick of things.”

Tony Howard Named Interactive Sales Manager for Alpha Media Portland. Digital sales pro Tony Howard joins Alpha Media to serve as interactive sales manager for the company’s Portland operations that include news/talk KXL “FM News 101”and sports talk KXTG-AM/FM “102.9 The Game.”  Howard was most recently with Clip Interactive as VP of sales and affiliate partnerships. He’s also served with TribuneCBS RADIO, and iHeartMedia.  Alpha Portland VP of sales Amy Leimbach states, “I’ve had the opportunity to work with Tony Howard when he was at CBS RADIO and again when he handled affiliate partnerships at Clip Interactive.  Tony is creative, competitive, and has a drive to succeed – all qualities that correlate with Alpha’s core values.  I am looking forward to having Tony join the Alpha Portland team.”

KBOI, Boise’s Paul J Schneider to Retire After 51 Years. Incredibly, Paul J Schneider has been working on the air at KBOI, Boise since June of 1967.  Back then he worked on both TV and radio.  He was a news anchor and voiced the TV replay of Boise State football games. He shifted to radio only in 1976. Now, after 51 years on the station, he’ll retire after his December 14 program to finally sleep in for a change. During his career at KBOI he enjoyed one of the country’s largest radio audience shares as a part of “Dunn & Schneider,” that aired from 1973 to 1993. Since 2001, he’s hosted “Idaho Talks Live” with Chris Walton.   and throughout his career, Paul J and his morning partners have been at the top of station ratings.  Schneider says, “I have been privileged to work with great morning show partners and to be on AM radio in its heyday.  I was able to call the Boise State games through their growth trajectory and when not all the games were broadcasted live on TV.”  Schneider plans to produce weekly features and blog for NewsTalk 670 KBOI as well as continue covering Boise State football for Learfield Sports.

TALKERS News Notes. The San Diego Reader is reporting that local photographer Jesse Cuevas has received a settlement from Entercom over talk host Kevin Klein’s unauthorized use of his photo of San Diego’s Coronado Bridge in the ill-advised social media post that derailed his gig as morning host on what is now sports talk KWFN.  If you recall, Klein’s post teased his debut as the station’s new AM host with the phrase “Jump to a new morning show.”  The Coronado Bridge has been the scene of hundreds of suicides during its existence.  Cuevas can’t reveal how much he was paid but the paper speculates that settlements in cases like this are usually in the five figures…..PodcastOne reports that award-winning investigative journalist and WTOP, Washington national security correspondent J.J. Green recently spoke with a former Russian internet troll named Marat Mindiyarov on his podcast “Target USA.”  Mindiyarov served with the Kremlin-linked Internet Research Agency in St. Petersburg where his job was to “trick Americans on Facebook,Twitter and other social media platforms.”  During the interview Mindiyarov says one of the main objectives was to impact the U.S. presidential election by promoting Russian government views to Americans by pretending to be Americans on social media.  Listen to the episode here…..Beasley Media Group CEO Caroline Beasley is launching a brand-new podcast series.  In the premiere episode, Beasley speaks with Dr. Shawn DuBravac, author of the best-seller Digital Destiny: How the New Age of Data Will Transform the Way We Work, Live, and Communicate (Regnery, 2015).  Beasley says, “Podcasting is an area of growth in the audio space that I am personally very passionate about as we continue to grow as a company.  It was such a privilege to speak with Shawn and hear his valuable thoughts about the future role of smart cities, the transformation of automotive industry and more!”  Listen to the podcast here.

Talk Media Public Relations Pioneer Richard Strauss Is This Week’s Guest on Harrison Podcast.  The man who literally opened the White House doors to talk radio and gave the medium top tier access to the executive branch of the Federal Government for decades to come, Richard Strauss, is this week’s guest on the award-winning PodcastOne series, “The Michael Harrison Interview.”  Strauss, the founder and president of Washington, DC-based Strauss Media Strategies was the first-ever White House radio director, appointed at the age of 23 and serving between 1993 and 1996, the first three years of President Bill Clinton’s administration.  During that time, Strauss elevated the burgeoning medium of news/talk radio to equal status with newspapers and television in enjoying access to the presidency.  Prior to that, radio was a second-class citizen in that arena – at least during the modern era going all the way back to the Eisenhower years.  According to Michael Harrison, “What Richard Strauss did for talk radio, while still a kid, is a major piece of the medium’s colorful history and should serve as an inspiration for aspiring youngsters looking to make their mark in this industry going forward.   I am so glad we have a chance to tell his story on this week’s program.”  Media freaks, historians and audiophiles will not want to miss this podcast!  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.

Kavanaugh Assault Allegation Top News/Talk Story for Week of September 17-21. The allegation of sexual assault against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh was the most-talked-about story on news/talk radio this week, landing atop the Talkers TenTM.  At #2 was the investigation into possible connections between the Trump campaign and Russian agents. Coming in at #3 was the growing trade war between the U.S. and China, followed by the GOP spending bill and President Trump’s criticism it provides no funding for a Mexican border wall 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. See this week’s entire chart here.

Noted Record Producer and Social Commentator Robbie Stevens Launches Short-Form Series on TalkersRadio.  TALKERS magazine is pleased to welcome noted record producer and iconoclastic social commentator Robbie Stevens to its experimental talk radio platform, TalkersRadio, beginning today (9/19).  Stevens is launching a series of short-form features titled “I Don’t Do Podcasts” in which he randomly shares his views and experiences about a variety of subjects including politics, media, education, sociology, philosophy, psychology, sports and, of course, music.  He is well-known for decades in the record business for his prolific contributions as a musician, recordist, mixer, and/or producer on records by such artists as Herbie Hancock, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, the late Gil-Scott HeronJohn Lydon a.k.a. Johnny RottenAfrika Bambaataaa, the posthumous John Lennon catalog, and many more.  Stevens most recently headed up the production of Yoko Ono’s remarkable run of 13 Billboard #1 dance singles with her EDM band, ONO and just concluded the exciting 2018 surround sound re-mix of key elements from John Lennon’s “Imagine” album called “Raw” as a soon-to-be released box set titled “John Lennon’s Imagine – the Ultimate Collection” (Universal).  A Columbia University graduate, this fascinating raconteur was born in Brooklyn, raised in Queens and now resides in the Bronx.  Bringing what can be described as an “outer-borough” grit to the microphone, TALKERS publisher Michael Harrison has referred to Stevens as the “Bronx Philosopher” as well as the “Rogue from Riverdale.”  TALKERS general manager of broadcast operations David Bernstein says, “I first became aware of Robbie almost a decade ago when he came to my attention as a successful record producer who liked to dabble in news/talk radio.  He briefly did some interesting work on WNYM in New York and WOR’s short-lived online ancillary talk show platform where his well-informed, ‘streety’ take on hot topics generated a positive buzz.  I am beyond thrilled that he is clearing the time in his busy schedule to get back to trying new things in spoken word programming on TalkersRadio.  This guy is an original and that’s what TalkersRadio is all about.”   TalkersRadio was launched in 2013 as an experimental radio workshop/lab where new ideas in talk programming could be tested and showcased by newcomers to the industry as well as seasoned pros looking to expand their repertoire.  Since then, a number of shows have been developed on TalkersRadio that have gone on to achieve success in terrestrial radio and/or podcasting.  To listen to the first episode of “I Don’t Do Podcasts with Robbie Stevens” please click here.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. In the Panama City, Florida market, Powell Broadcasting enters into an agreement to sell CHR WPFM-FM to religious not-for-profit broadcaster Educational Media Foundation……….Programmer Candy Cintron is promoted to program director for Entercom’s Spanish pop outlet WLZL, Washington “El Zol 107.9.” She’s been morning show producer and assistant program director since 2015.  SVP and market manager Phil Zachary says, “Candy has invested close to a decade of her career in making ‘El Zol’ a vital, vibrant voice in DC’s Hispanic community.  This promotion honors her past, present and, most importantly, her future contributions to the ‘El Zol’ legacy.”…..Chicago media maven Robert Feder reports on the unexpected death of Chicago radio sales pro Laura Hangren, who died after a heart attack on Saturday (9/15) at age 56.  She’d most recently been an AE at Weigel Broadcasting’s WRME-FM “Me-TV FM.” She’d also worked at such heritage Windy City signals as WLS-FM and WLUP-FM…..The Premiere Networks nationally syndicated alternative morning program “The Woody Show” hosted Foo Fighters Dave Grohl (left) and Taylor Hawkins (right) recently.  They’re pictured below with show host Woody (center).  During their visit, they talked about how they met, the evolution of rock music, the upcoming Foo Fighters-curated “Cal Jam 18” festival, being parents, and more.

Thursday, September 20, 2018

| September 20, 2018

JVC Media’s ‘LI News Radio’ Debuts Sports Betting Programming. The latest broadcaster to announce new programming centered on sports betting is JVC Broadcasting.  The company announces it is partnering with Sports Garten Network to bring that firm’s flagship talk program “Wanna Bet?” – hosted by Tom Barton with Gary Pollakusky – to news/talk WRCN, Riverhead, Long Island “103.9 FM LI News Radio.”  The one-hour program airs at 5:00 pm Monday through Saturday and at 10:00 pm on Sunday.  SGN is also providing the station with sports updates throughout the day.  JVC Media executive vice president and general manager Bruce Shepard says, “Having sports professionals like Tom and Gary with their sports talent and skill set is a complete win for us.  We are in the sports capital of the world and we are the radio home to the NY Islanders and Stony Brook Football.  This is fun live, local and hometown radio the way it is supposed to be.  This is the first show like this on the radio here and we are excited to have them on the team.”  SGN founder Pollakusky adds, “I am thrilled to be part of such a dynamic, live and local radio organization like ‘LI News Radio’ and JVC Broadcasting. The sports betting landscape in America shifted forever on a Monday morning in May when the U.S. Supreme Court released a game-changing ruling that put the nation on a path toward widespread legal sports betting.  We are the first show on the air in this market talking about this exciting, nationwide decision.  Sports betting has made national news – for something other than a controversy – and we are talking about it.”

Buck Sexton Gets Facetime with the President. Pictured above is Premiere Networks nationally syndicated personality Buck Sexton (far right, blue tie) in the Oval Office interviewing President Trump.  During the 45-minute interview, Trump talked about immigration policy, the Mueller probe and its negative affect on his presidency, his disappointment with Attorney General Jeff Sessions, his regret for not immediately firing FBI Director James Comey, and more.

Westwood One to Collaborate with AP for Ad Representation. This deal for Westwood One to provide ad sales representation for The Associated Press’ short-form news network is being termed a collaboration.  WWO will rep the AP’s bartered breaking news wire service, photos, video, web content, sports scores, datasets, audio bites, and more.  AP president of local media Michael Fabiano says, “AP is very pleased to have our diverse content set and affiliate list represented by Westwood One in the advertising marketplace.  Westwood One has a rich history of providing consumers relevant news/talk, entertainment, and sports programming.  Westwood One COO Charles Steinhauer adds, “Westwood One has had a long relationship with the AP and with our entry into the short-duration ad market they were a natural partner.”

Radio News and Sports Pro Dave Barrett Dies at 63. The industry is mourning the death of award-winning radio pro Dave Barrett, who died unexpectedly yesterday (9/19) at age 63.  Barrett was serving with CBS News Radio at the time of his death.  CBS News Radio general manager Craig Swagler says, “Dave Barrett was a special kind of broadcaster – one who could transport you to the scene of the story in just a few words.  He will be dearly missed – both in this newsroom and across the country.”  The obit from CBS notes that Barrett “was a lover of his medium who was especially interested in utilizing natural sound as well as words to tell stories better.  He was CBS News Radio’s go-to reporter for outdoor events such as music and sports and reported from 10 Olympic Games.  Barrett received one of the highest honors in electronic journalism, the Edward R. Murrow Award, in 2011 for his insightful report that brought to life for listeners how kids occupy their time, illustrated by the sounds of their activities.”  Barrett also won a Murrow for a report on the 200th anniversary of the Star-Spangled Banner in 2015.  He won his first Murrow for a 1998 profile of Tiger Woods.  Barrett joined CBS News Radio in February 2001 from the Fox News Radio Network, where he was news director beginning in 1998. He spent 15 years at ABC Radio News, covering everything from political conventions and hurricanes to the Olympics.