Tag: "Checkpoint Radio"

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+).

Thursday, August 10, 2017

| August 10, 2017

Bennett Helps WCBS-AM Note Its All-News Golden Anniversary. A special interview and performance this past Tuesday (8/8) by iconic singer Tony Bennett at the PlayStation Theater in Times Square highlighted a celebration of 50 years of news as CBS Radio New York’s WCBS-AM observed its 50th birthday as an all-news outlet. Wayne Cabot (29 years at WCBS-AM, the station’s longest-tenured anchor) and fellow news anchor Alex Silverman (who joined WCBS-AM in April 2011) hosted the event, which included a plethora of stories from WCBS-AM personalities and guests. Senior vice president and market manager for CBS Radio New York Marc Rayfield states that WCBS-AM “is a trusted New York City news outlet with a rich history and legacy of delivering up-to-the-minute news. We will continue to tell the stories of the people, places, and happenings from all around this great city. This special night gathered listeners, station personalities, and prominent figures to celebrate what the station has meant for the past 50 years and will continue to mean into the future.” In addition to Cabot and Silverman, other WCBS-AM personalities there Tuesday night included Craig Allen, Joe Connolly, Pat Farnack, Brad Heller, Tom Kaminski, Paul Murnane, Steve Scott, and Michael Wallace. Among those sharing their New York stories were Lesley Stahl of “60 Minutes,” “Late Show with David Letterman” bandleader (“The World’s Most Dangerous Band” and “CBS Orchestra”) Paul Shaffer, and former New York Mets manager Bobby Valentine. CBS News’ Anthony Mason conducted the Tony Bennett interview. A portion of the proceeds from ticket sales (which ranged from $55 to $150 per person) was donated to Exploring the Arts Foundation, Bennett’s charity organization dedicated to transforming lives of young people through arts education. Following back-to-back 2.4 showings (6+) in Nielsen Audio’s April and May PPM reports, WCBS-AM has registered a 2.7 (6+) in June and July, moving up from #13 in June to #12. Entercom will continue to use the CBS Radio News brand for at least one year after it closes on all of CBS Radio’s AM and FM properties.

KIRO-FM Teams with Seattle Police to Provide “Beds for Kids.” The goal of a joint effort between Bonneville Seattle news/talk KIRO-FM and the Seattle Police Department is to provide 600 needy local children with mattresses, bedframes, sheet sets, comforters, pillows and a Teddy bear. KIRO-FM afternoon drive (3:00 – 7:00 pm) hosts “Ron (Upshaw) & Don (O’Neill)” have been dedicated advocates for the “Beds for Kids” project since its inception, with O’Neill emphasizing, “Now, more than ever, we need to make sure that every child that needs a bed – gets a bed. When a child gets a good night sleep and something to eat, it is proven they stay in school and they do better in school. Help us help police help kids – it’s another way to be a part of something bigger than ourselves.” The “Beds for Kids” cofounder Jeremy Wade notes, “Over the last three years, we have been amazed to see how many kids in our community sleep on the floor. Through the ‘Beds for Kids’ program, we have provided over 500 local kids with a brand-new bed. This year’s goal of 600 beds is our most ambitious yet, but with the support of our partners and the public, we know it can be done.” The project was created in 2014 by Wade and fellow officer Ryan Gallagher, who responded to a 9-1-1 call and discovered two young girls had been sleeping on the floor. Wade and Gallagher returned to that home with new beds purchased with their own money. Since then, hundreds of people have stepped up to assist the two officers in providing beds for children in need. Elsewhere inside that Bonneville cluster, Seattle Seahawks coverage on sports talk KIRO-AM “710 ESPN” will include John Clayton (formerly with ESPN-TV), who will serve as a sideline reporter. In addition, Hall of Fame quarterback Warren Moon, who called Seahawks pre-season games and was part of Westwood One’s NFL coverage the last two seasons, returns as radio analyst, a role he held for 13 seasons prior to 2015. Back as well for his 36th year on play-by-play is Steve Raible; Jen Mueller is in her ninth season doing sideline reporting.

Stigall Featured on “The Fox News Specialists.” Pictured above at the far right as he made his point yesterday afternoon (Wednesday, 8/9) on “The Fox News Specialists” is CBS Radio-owned WPHT “Talk Radio 1210,” Philadelphia 5:30 am – 9:00 am talent Chris Stigall. Intently looking on (left to right) are another guest specialist Mike Baker, co-host Eboni Williams, guest-host Mark Steyn, and co-host Katherine Timpf.

PPM Data – Part Three. July 2017 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 July 2017 survey period covered June 22 – July 19. View all the 6+ numbers from subscribing stations here.

Gottlieb Kicks Off Training Camp Tour. Gearing up for the start of football season, Fox Sports Radio’s Doug Gottlieb hits the road for on-location coverage from several NFL training sites. The journey began this past Monday (8/7) with a broadcast from the Los Angeles Rams facility at UC Irvine. Still in Southern California (Oxnard-Ventura), Gottlieb is with the Dallas Cowboys today (Thursday, 8/10), and he will visit the Los Angeles Chargers’ camp at the Jack Hammett Sports Complex in Costa Mesa next Wednesday (8/16). Pictured left to right are Fox Sports Radio’s Doug Gottlieb with Los Angeles Rams head coach Sean McVay.

LG To Activate FM Chips in its Smartphones. The announcement that LG phones in North America and Latin America will have FM chips activated moving forward comes from NextRadio parent TagStation, whose president Paul Brenner states, “We are proud and excited to partner with one of the world’s leading Smartphone providers to continue our mission of connecting and exposing users to a fully immersive radio experience. This alliance will give millions of consumers the opportunity to receive real over-the-air FM radio through their phone.” NextRadio will be pre-loaded on some models.

WQBA Named Dolphins’ Spanish-Language Radio Flagship. As part of the multi-year agreement, Univision Radio Miami Spanish news/talk WQBA will air all Miami Dolphins pre-season, regular season, and playoff games. Raul Striker Jr. will handle play-by-play duties, while Eduardo Martell will provide color analysis. WQBA will produce pregame and postgame shows, as well as a weekly show covering Dolphins-related news/events. Sports programming falls under the recently-launched Univision Deportes Radio sports network. WQBA senior vice president and general manager Claudia Puig comments, “We are excited to once again partner with the Miami Dolphins, offering them a terrific opportunity to reach their Spanish-speaking fans through Univision Deportes Radio. Our listeners will now be able to cheer their favorite football team ‘en español.’ The Dolphins broadcasts will be a perfect complement to Univision Deportes Radio’s outstanding sports programming lineup.” Miami Dolphins senior vice president and chief commercial officer Todd Kline adds, “We are proud to partner with Univision Deportes Radio WQBA 1140 AM and are confident they will deliver the most complete and up-to-date coverage of the Miami Dolphins to fans. The Dolphins have a 36-year commitment to broadcast games in Spanish in the South Florida market – this partnership delivers on our strong tradition.” Spanish-language broadcasts of Dolphins games were previously heard on crosstown Deportes Media Spanish Sports WNMA “ESPN Deportes Miami.” The team’s English-language flagships are CBS Radio Miami’s WQAM “Sports Radio 560” and co-owned WKIS “Kiss 99.9 New Country.”

TALKERS News Notes. Citing other media sources, The Tennessean reports that former Tennessee Titans tight end Frank Wycheck will leave his “Wake-Up Zone” morning show co-hosting duties on Cumulus Media Nashville sports talk WGFX “104.5 The Zone” in the next few weeks. Earlier, Wycheck announced he is stepping away from his role as analyst for Titans’ radio broadcasts for a year, owing to cognitive issues related to concussions from his playing days. It is reported, however, that Wycheck will remain with “The Zone” for swing duty ….. In other football-related news, iHeartMedia Tucson’s KTZR “Fox Sports 1450” joins the Arizona Cardinals radio network. Senior vice president of programming for iHeartMedia Tucson David Adams comments, “As the new home for Fox Sports in Tucson; the future home of Dan Patrick; and the official broadcast partner of the Tucson Roadrunners, we couldn’t be more excited to solidify our position as ‘Tucson’s Sports Station’ by adding the Cardinals.” The team’s previous Tucson affiliate was Cumulus Media’s KCUB “Sports Radio 1290.”

Checkpoint Radio Adds Houston, Philadelphia, and St. Louis Affiliates. The latest to join Checkpoint Radio – the first nationally syndicated radio show dedicated to the world of e-sports and gaming – are GOW Media’s KFNC “ESPN 97.5 FM,” Houston; Beasley Media Group’s WPEN “97.5 FM The Fanatic, Philadelphia”; and Hubbard’s WXOS “101 ESPN, St Louis.” Westwood One president/Cumulus Media executive vice president of corporate marketing Suzanne Grimes comments, “Checkpoint Radio is the only national show that connects radio stations and listeners to the explosive energy around e-sports. According to Newzoo, e-sports will grow to $696 million in revenue this year, a year-over-year increase of 41%. Brand investment is predicted to grow to $1.5 billion by 2020. This is a space you want to be in. Westwood One is the undeniable leader in sports programming – we know e-sports is an important sector for affiliates and advertisers.” Checkpoint Radio managing partner Rick Scott notes, “We are excited at the rapid growth of Checkpoint Radio in so many quality and big markets. It is a testament to the quality and appeal of the show and the passionate crew working to put it together.” Hosted by Nate Bender, Robbie Landis, Norris Howard, and Joe Sloan, two-hour weekly Checkpoint Radio features insights, news, interviews, and updates designed specifically for the video game and e-sports fan. In addition to the weekly show, Checkpoint also produces a podcast featuring content not heard on the radio program.

WKLB Elevates Santolucito to Director/Music and Marketing. Over and above continuing her oversight of the marketing/promotions department of WKLB “Country 102.5,” Dawn Santolucito is promoted to music and marketing director at the Beasley Media Group Boston property. Program director David Corey states, “Dawn’s passion, dedication, and organizational skills – plus a great ear for music – made her the ideal candidate for the position. We are proud to have Dawn in our ‘Country 102.5’ family.” Santolucito comments, “It truly has been a privilege being a part of the ‘Country 102.5’ family for the past seven years in my role within the marketing/promotions department. I am thrilled to begin this new chapter.” Among persons 6+ in Nielsen Audio’s just-released July 2017 PPM report, WKLB is flat at 4.5, but climbs from seventh in June 2017 to sixth, while cross-town format competitor – iHeartMedia-owned WBWL “101.7 The Bull – Boston’s New Hit Country” is up (modestly) for the third straight time (2.1 – 2.2 – 2.4 – 2.5, 6+) and inches up from #17 to #16. With a 7.7 (6+), WKLB classic hits-oldies sibling WROR “Boston’s Classic Hits” remains at #1 for the seventh successive sweep.

iHR, Understood.org Align to Help Kids Facing Learning/Attention Issues. One of every five children have a learning and attention challenge such as ADHD or dyslexia. A partnership between iHeartMedia and Understood.org explores and raises awareness of learning and attention issues, and breaks stereotypes about these often-misunderstood children. The partnership includes public service announcements voiced by iHeartMedia personalities Ryan Seacrest, Elvis Duran, Mario Lopez, and Bobby Bones, as well as a long-form public affairs show. Commenting about Understood.org, its executive leader/corporate partnerships & alliances Nancy Smith states, “This whole team is deeply committed to helping the millions of children with learning and attention issues get the support they need – support that can help them reverse any downward spiral in school.” From prior experience, Smith felt that iHeartRadio “has a strong belief in win-win partnerships and in helping the world be a better place. I knew collaboration with the iHeart team could take us to new levels of support for kids with learning and attention issues.” Aided by 15 nonprofit organizations, Understood.org launched nearly three years ago. “Today, it supports and empowers millions of parents through personalized resources, daily access to experts, a community of other parents and experts, and interactive tools,” Smith explains. “Many accomplished musicians including Justin Timberlake [ADHD], Lindsey Stirling [dyslexia], and Jewel [dyslexia] have learning and attention issues. Understood is happy to call iHeartRadio a partner in our mission to raise awareness of learning and attention issues. Having the support of a community of musical artists and fans who embrace differences can help build widespread acceptance for kids who are so often misunderstood. Together with iHeartRadio, we want to help even more children with learning and attention issues.”

Sun Broadcast Group Enters the “Country Fried Mix.” A sales and affiliation partnership with Sun Broadcast Group will bring “Country Fried Mix” with national touring artist and producer DJ Sinister to the network in three weeks (9/1). Sun chief executive officer Jason Bailey remarks, “One of the things we have always tried to do at Sun is find exciting and unique programs for our listeners and clients. When I heard ‘Country Fried Mix’ for the first time, I knew we had to have it in our lineup. There is simply nothing [else] like it on the radio – that’s why it is perfect for us. We are honored to represent this incredible product to the industry and the clients who support it.” According to DJ Sinister, “This new opportunity really takes us to the next level with partners that are willing to take risks,” while the program’s producer Charlie Pennachio adds, “Focus created this expansion; this opportunity gives us the ability to become a laser beam with a team.” The weekend show of mashed up/remixed country hits has aired since 2014 and has affiliates in (among other markets) Philadelphia, Miami, Detroit, Phoenix, and Nashville.

Opening “The Vault” Again in Montgomery. Jettisoning its top 40 format in order to return to rock as “107.1 The Vault” is Bluewater Broadcasting Montgomery, Alabama’s WQKS-HD3 W296AI. It abandoned “The Vault” four years ago in favor of classic jams “Yo! 107.1,” but as program director Rick Peters writes on his Facebook page, “The market has spoken and –  contrary to popular belief – we do listen. ‘The Vault’ will try to recreate album and progressive rock stations from the 1970s, such as [Los Angeles’] KMET and KLOS; [Chicago’s] WLUP [‘The Loop’]; [Philadelphia’s] WMMR; [Miami’s] WSHE; and [St. Louis’] KSHE. The format is freeform – the [on-air talent] can program what they like. Every day will be different – it’s a throwback. At the same time, it’s evolutionary for the day [but] it’s not designed to be mass-appeal. For those that ‘lived’ the music the first time, we will try to be worthy. For the rest of you, listen up [because] you might find something you love.” Among persons 12+ in Montgomery’s most recent Nielsen Audio book (spring 2017), WQKS-HD3 checks in at #16 with a .8, while iHeartMedia urban contemporary WZHT “Hot 105.7” is on top with an 11.2 (12+).

More Music Radio News and Career Moves. Earlier this week, midday host Danny Dwyer of Alpha Media Portland country outlet KUPL “98.7 The Bull” raised $10,000 for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in his inaugural golf invitational at Salem Oregon’s Creekside Country Club ….. A variety of tomato-themed activities will be included next Saturday (8/19) when Beasley Media Group Philadelphia classic rock WMGK morning personality John DeBella holds his three-hour (11:00 am – 2:00 pm) “Tomato Fest” in Pennsauken, New Jersey. Among the highlights are a biggest-tomato contest; a dunk tank manned by the show’s “Super Steve”; and bobbing for tomatoes. In addition, WMGK’s house band Kategory Five will perform, and there will be a classic car display. Donations of canned goods and fresh produce will be collected to benefit the South Jersey Food Bank. DeBella is said to have thought up the “Tomato Fest” concept while seeing a vast number of farm stands and pondering why the tomato wasn’t being celebrated ….. Three (four-hour) Westwood One Labor Day weekend music specials are in the pipeline. Imagine Dragons front man Dan Reynolds will host rock’s “Summer Wrap Up”; Louis Tomlinson does the same for the pop format’s “Last Big Summer Weekend”; and ACM-award winner Kelsea Ballerini has the honors for “Workin’ Hard Country.”

Ell Talks Up Her Latest “Project.” During her visit to Westwood One’s syndicated “Ty, Kelly, & Chuck” morning show, Lindsay Ell discussed touring with Brad Paisley and creating her new album “The Project” with producer Kristian Bush. Shown left to right are Ty Bentli, Kelly Ford, Lindsay Ell, and Chuck Wicks.