Tag: "KABC-AM"

Wednesday, September 2, 2020

| September 2, 2020

Round Two of August PPM Ratings Released. The second of four rounds of ratings information from Nielsen Audio’s August 2020 PPM survey has been released for 12 markets including: Washington, Boston, Miami, Seattle, Detroit, Phoenix, Minneapolis, San Diego, Tampa, Denver, Baltimore, and St. Louis. Nielsen’s August 2020 survey period covered July 16 – August 12. You can see all the 6+ numbers from subscribing stations here. Meanwhile, TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian presents his Ratings Takeaways from these 12 markets. In the Washington, DC market, Cumulus Media’s news/talk WMAL-FM dips a half share to finish with a 7.9 share and falls to #2 behind Hubbard Radio’s all-news WTOP-FM which added eight-tenths for an 8.6 share and the #1 rank. Beasley Media Group sports talker WBZ-FM, Boston “98.5 The Sports Hub” climbs eight-tenths to a 4.9 share good for the #7 rank in the market while iHeartMedia’s crosstown all-new WBZ-AM “News Radio 1030” loses one-tenth, finishing the August survey with a 6.6 share but rises to the #3 rank. In Seattle, Bonneville’s KIRO-FM remains unchanged at a 7.1 share and continues its now six-survey run at #1. See Mike Kinosian’s complete Ratings Takeaway from this report (and the first round!) here.

Cumulus Stations Sign Up with ABC Audio for News Service. With the shuttering of the Westwood One News service that took effect on August 30, Cumulus Media news/talk, sports talk and some music outlets were in need of a news affiliation. The company announces that 29 of its news/talk stations – including heritage signals such as WLS-AM, Chicago and KGO-AM, San Francisco — are now using ABC Audio’s news. At the same time, 12 of Cumulus’ sports and music stations are signing on to air ABC’s hourly newscasts. ABC Audio executive director of business strategies, programming and distribution Heidi Oringer says, “We’re excited to welcome these big stations back to the ABC Audio family after six years away. Through this partnership, our unmatched reporting including crisis coverage, breaking news, and special programming, will reach new listeners and help ABC Audio continue to be the best in the business.” ABC Audio VP and general manager Stacia Philips Deshishku adds, “We’re in one of the biggest news cycles in history, with no end in sight. Our teams have worked nonstop to not only keep up with but also exceed listeners’ demand for trusted information. We’re thrilled that more stations are noticing our robust offerings and signing on to be part of our affiliate family.”

Pat McAfee Show to Air on SiriusXM’s Mad Dog Sports. After exiting the CBS Sports Radio platform last month, former Indianapolis Colts punter and sports media personality Pat McAfee will be heard on SiriusXM’s Mad Dog Sports Radio channel live from 12:00 noon to 3:00 pm ET, beginning September 9. McAfee says, “I’m very thankful and honored for the chance to be on Mad Dog Sports Radio. SiriusXM is such an incredibly massive platform and the freedom it allows is perfect for our style of show. To say we’re grateful to Scott Greenstein, Steve Cohen, Andrew Moss and all of the other awesome folks at SiriusXM for this opportunity would be an understatement. Let’s do the damn thing. We hope you’ll join us daily.”

Trump Visits Kenosha/Protests/BLM Movement, Presidential Race, Pelosi Salon Flap, COVID-19 Stats & Projections, School Opening Debate/College Outbreaks, Melania Trump Book, and New Stimulus Deal Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (9/1). President Trump’s visit to Kenosha in the aftermath of the shooting of Jacob Blake, the protests in Kenosha, Portland, Minneapolis and Los Angeles, and the Black Lives Matter movement; the November presidential election; the controversy over House Speaker Nancy Pelosi pictured maskless in a closed San Francisco salon; the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the U.S. and projections for future cases; the debate over opening schools and the flareups on some college campuses; former Melania Trump aid Stephanie Winston Wolkoff’s book about the First Lady; and a new stimulus deal were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Report: Radio Listening Returning to March Levels. This week’s Westwood One blog includes data from Nielsen Audio from the August PPM survey and the May-June-July diary markets survey that indicates radio listening is returning to its March 2020 levels. The Nielsen data cited notes that “benchmarking against the March PPM survey, August average quarter-hour audiences increased again, now generating 90% of the prior audiences. In terms of weekly reach, AM/FM radio in the PPM markets has recaptured 96% of March cume listening. In diary markets, AM/FM radio has retained 97% of prior weekly cume.” Further, Nielsen says, “In medium and smaller diary markets, AM/FM radio is ‘pandemic proof’: AQH listening in the just-released May-June-July survey is virtually identical to the January-February-March period as AM/FM radio retains 100% of prior listening.” In a sign that more people are back in their cars in the morning, Nielsen notes “in the just-released August PPM data, most of the AQH growth occurred Monday-Friday 6AM-10AM and on weekends.”

iHeartMedia Reveals Results of ‘Trustworthiness’ Study. Based on information from data & analytics firm Engagement Labs, iHeartMedia says that one of the key findings is that “listeners’ trust in radio and its on-air personalities continues to grow as social media has become far less trustworthy over the past year.” The survey of radio listeners found radio to be 79% more or just as trustworthy versus a year ago while social media is 50% less trustworthy during the same time period. In particular, sentiment for Facebook, Instagram and Twitter has plummeted in recent months, with Facebook down 56%, Instagram down 38%, and Twitter down 140%. The survey of radio listeners age 18-69 ranked media trustworthiness as follows: 75% trust radio, 66% trust television, 57% trust websites, 38% trust Twitter, and 37% trust Facebook. iHeartMedia chief marketing officer Gayle Troberman comments, “The COVID-19 pandemic has made it more important than ever for Americans to get information they trust and to find ways to connect with people – and these findings show that radio continues to deliver a much needed and sought out trusted companionship during this historic and uncertain time.”

TALKERS News Notes. Former Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg and iHeartMedia are partnering on a 20-episode podcast series in which the former South Bend, Indiana mayor will discuss “the issues and choices that will define America’s next chapter.” “The Deciding Decade with Pete Buttigieg” debuts on September 9. iHeartPodcast Network president Conal Byrne says, “Pete created a groundswell of excitement during his presidential campaign run, and he is one of the most admirable and energetic young leaders of our time. We’re excited to bring Pete’s sharp intellect and remarkable eloquence to The iHeartPodcast Network.”…..A new podcast partnership between iHeartMedia and The Recount results in three new weekly shows: “Hell and High Water with John Heilemann,” “Just Something About Her with Jennifer Palmieri,” and “Battleground with David Plouffe and Steve Schmidt.” The Recount executive editor John Heilemann says, “The 2020 election is, without question, the most important election of our lifetime and this exciting trio of podcasts from hosts who’ve operated at the highest level of politics will help listeners cut through the bullshit and understand the big picture of what’s happening ahead of Election Day and beyond. Our content is resonating on our platform and across social media and we are excited to bring it to podcasting with iHeartMedia.”…..Pictured below is GCN nationally syndicated talk host Dr. Daliah Wachs giving blood during National Blood Donation Week. Dr. Wachs tells TALKERS magazine, “We’re off to a great start to National Blood Donation Week. Multiple governors declared Blood Donation Months, all falling on September 4 (National Blood Donation Day). Not only does this week help raise much needed blood for our blood banks and medical centers that has been drastically lowered during the COVID pandemic, but it unites both Democratic and Republican governors in a common cause. Blood isn’t a political issue, it’s a human life issue and National Blood Donation week proves Americans can come together for a common cause.”

Music Radio News and Career Moves. Programming pro Angelique Alston is promoted to brand manager for Entercom’s hip hop WPGC-FM, Washington. Since 2013, Alston has served WPGC as assistant program director, morning show producer and events producer. Entercom Washington SVP and market manager Ivy Savoy-Smith says, “Angelique has done a tremendous job elevating our team and I am excited to see her expand her career as brand manager. Her unique way of providing entertainment for our listeners, educating the community with viable content and her engagement with the sales management team tells me she will thrive in this new role. Her ability to multi-task, implore creative thinking, work hard and commit to excellence has led to great success and we are delighted to have her lead WPGC 95.5 FM.”…..Rochester country WBEE announces that air personality Chris Konya is joining “The All New Bee Morning Coffee Club” program alongside Terry Clifford and TJ Sharp. This is a return to Entercom Rochester for Konya. Entercom Rochester SVP and market manager Sue Munn says, “Chris was a fan favorite during his time producing ‘The Breakfast Buzz’ and we’re thrilled to welcome him back to our airwaves alongside Terry and TJ. His humor and wit make him a perfect fit as a co-host for our new weekday morning program and together the trio will create a dynamic show for our community.”…..Premiere Networks’ syndicated Delilah adds three new affiliate stations. Picking up Delilah for evenings are: iHeartMedia’s KBFP-FM, Bakersfield “Sunny 105.3,” Cumulus Media’s WBZE-FM, Tallahassee “Star 98.9,” and McKenzie River Broadcasting’s KMGE-FM, Eugene, Oregon “Mix 94.5.”…..An application has been filed with the FCC for transfer of country KZTL-FM, Paxton and rock KRNP-FM, Sutherland in Nebraska from Legacy Communications to Eagle Communications. Kalil & Co is serving as the exclusive broker.

Thursday, June 27, 2019

| June 27, 2019

Cumulus to Sell WABC, New York to Red Apple Media for $12.5 Million. As TALKERS magazine tipped earlier today, Cumulus Media Inc. is agreeing to sell New York City heritage AM WABC to John Catsimatidis-controlled Red Apple Media, Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Red Apple Group, for $12.5 million in cash.  Cumulus Media’s CEO Mary Berner says, “Today’s agreement with Red Apple is yet another step in the execution of our portfolio optimization priority to drive Cumulus’s long-term success.  Consistent with our financial goals, we intend to use the sale’s net cash proceeds to pay down debt and invest in the company to better serve our 250 million listeners and the advertisers who want to reach them.  We are also pleased that WABC’s excellent team will work with Red Apple following the transaction’s close to continue building this iconic station’s legacy.”  Under the terms of the agreement, Red Apple will take responsibility for programming WABC immediately following the close of the sale, which is expected to occur in the third quarter of 2019. Catsimatidis says, “I am very pleased that Red Apple Media Inc. has agreed to acquire 77 WABC Radio.  The station is a real New York legend with a rich history in broadcasting.  I started a radio show five years ago which is now available in 14 states and on the internet.  It has gained a large and loyal audience.  Our purchase of 77 WABC Radio is the next step in building a new broadcasting business, and we look forward to considering the acquisition of more broadcasting assets.  We plan to retain the excellent staff and talent working at the station now and look forward to working with them.”  Catsimatidis is the owner, president, chairman and CEO of Gristedes Foods, a large Manhattan-based grocery chain and the Red Apple Group, a real estate and aviation company with about $2 billion in holdings in New York, Florida and Pennsylvania.  He is also the chairman and CEO of the Red Apple Group subsidiary, United Refining Company.  He hosts a Sunday morning talk radio show on a number of stations along the East Coast out of his flagship, Salem Media’s WNYM, New York “AM 970 The Answer.”  Catsimatidis was the runner-up for the Republican nomination for Mayor of New York in 2013.

Exclusive! TALKERS Publisher Michael Harrison Speaks with John Catsimatidis.  Listen to Michael Harrison‘s conversation about his company’s acquisition of WABC, New York here.

Cox Enterprises Announces Sale of Cox Media Group Radio Assets to Apollo Global Management. This sale of the Cox Media Group radio station portfolio to private equity fund manager Apollo Global Management – the price not disclosed in the press release – will be less disruptive to the operations than a typical transfer of ownership of this size as it appears the new company will keep management in place. The deal calls for Cox Media Group’s radio station portfolio as well as its CoxReps and Gamut national advertising businesses to become part of a newly expanded media company called Cox Media Group, based in Atlanta, that acquired Cox’s broadcast television group and the company’s radio, newspaper, and television properties in Ohio back in February.  Cox Enterprises is maintaining a minority stake in the new company.  This deal affects some 52 radio brands in 10 markets – including heritage news/talk stations WSB-AM/WSBB-FM, Atlanta; WOKV-FM, Jacksonville; WDBO-FM, Orlando; and KRMG-AM/FM, Tulsa.  The new Cox Media Group will operate more than 60 radio stations across 11 markets.  The presser states that “the buyer plans to maintain the successful operating structure of Cox Media Group’s television, radio, CoxReps and Gamut businesses and leverage these assets to continue building a national media company with station properties in key markets across the country.”  However, the sale means Cox loses the grandfathered ownership status in Tampa and Orlando and will divest WPYO-FM, Orlando and WSUN-FM, Tampa in order to comply with FCC ownership caps.  Cox Enterprises CEO Alex Taylor says, “We are happy our Cox Radio and national ad platforms will continue to be operated with our television group.  Keeping these media businesses together gives us even more confidence in the future success of the new company.  We have spent many years fostering a culture of collaboration and innovation across these businesses and are pleased to see that work will continue.”  Apollo senior partner David Sambur adds, “We are thrilled to acquire the Cox Radio station portfolio, CoxReps and Gamut and combine them with the Cox Television business to form a new media company focused on quality local broadcasting.  Cox has deep roots in the media industry and has stood for the highest quality in local journalism for the past 120 years.  As we shepherd these businesses into the future, we are committed to investing in high-quality programming and fostering innovation in local media.”

‘Coach’ John Kentera Moves to Middays at ‘97.3 The Fan’ in San Diego. Market sports talk pro “Coach” John Kentera will take over the 12:00 noon to 3:00 pm daypart at Entercom’s sports talk KWFN-FM, San Diego “97.3 The Fan,” effective July 1.  Kentera will continue to host 97.3 The Fan’s pre- and post-game shows for Padres baseball games, “The Fan’s High School Football Show,” on Thursday nights in the fall, and serve as the color commentator on “The Fan’s Friday Night High School Football Game of the Week” broadcast.  Kentera served with former sports talker XEPRS-AM “The Mighty 1090” from 2003 through 2015.  His show replaces FOX Sports Radio’s Doug Gottlieb.  Entercom San Diego SVP and market manager Bob Bolinger says, “We’re thrilled to add Coach Kentera to 97.3 The Fan’s weekday lineup.  Coach has a rich history in San Diego and is truly beloved by the community, sports fans, and advertising partners alike.”

WGMN-AM, Roanoke Flips to News/TalkThe Roanoke Times reports that 3 Daughters Media has flipped WGMN-AM/W270CU, Roanoke from sports talk to news/talk.  The station dropped its 21-year affiliation with ESPN Radio and is airing FOX News Radio’s Brian Kilmeade show, Compass Media Networks-syndicated “Markley and van Camp” show, and the syndicated Tom Sullivan program.   3 Daughters owner Gary Burns tells the paper that more competitors in sports talk radio in the market have “watered it down.”  He also says of the flip, “I just think there’s a larger available audience in Roanoke for talk radio…than there is for sports radio.”

TALKERS News Notes. The nationally syndicated “Thom Hartmann Show” is now heard on Genesis Communications’ “News/Talk Florida” – the duo of WIXC, Titusville and WWBA, Tampa — airing in the 12:00 noon to 3:00 pm daypart…..Radio personality Susie Wargin – midday jock at iHeartMedia’s classic rock KRFX, Denver “103.5 The Fox” – is joining the radio broadcast team for Denver Broncos games this fall.  Wargin will serve as a sideline reporter alongside play-by-play voice Dave Logan and color commentator Rick Lewis. Games air on iHeartMedia’s news/talk KOA and KRFX-FM…..cabana announces it has published its 2019 Guide to Buying Podcasts.  The report includes new features, such as white-labeled case studies, “Ask an Ad Ops Expert” section, and insights into dynamic ad insertion.  cabana VP of digital sales Ilwira Marciszek says, “We’re seeing bigger brands with different goals entering podcast advertising, so we wanted to speak to their concerns directly.  Podcast advertising has worked for direct response, and it can work for all kinds of campaigns when used smartly.”  You can download the Buying Guide here…..Coastal Broadcasting’s sports talk KLRZ-FM, New Orleans “ESPN 100.3” is the new flagship for New Orleans Pelicans basketball beginning with the 2019-20 season.  Last season, games aired on iHeartMedia’s news/talk WRNO-FM.  Pelicans president Dennis Lauscha says, “We could not be more excited to begin this new era of Pelicans basketball with our new flagship radio partner and its devoted listening audience.  ‘ESPN New Orleans’ offers a tremendous daily sports lineup with a significant focus on the Pelicans, along with all of the local professional, collegiate, and high school teams.  This is an outstanding and natural alliance for our city and region.”…..Chicago media writer Robert Feder reports that WGN-AM weekend talk host David Plier is taking over the interim chairman position with the Museum of Broadcast Communications.   Plier has been and will continue to be a member of the museum’s board of directors.  He assumes the role from Larry Wert, who has been interim chairman since 2016.

44thAnnual Gracie Awards Luncheon Held in New York City. The Alliance for Women in Media Foundation presented the 44th Annual Gracie Awards Luncheon yesterday (6/26) at Cipriani 42nd Street in New York City.  Sheinelle Jones, co-host of “3rd Hour of TODAY” and co-anchor of NBC News’ “Weekend TODAY,” led the program alongside presenters Angela Yee from Premiere Networks’ syndicated “The Breakfast Club”; supermodel, TV personality and podcast host Emme; Roula Christie of “The Roula and Ryan Show” on KRBE, Houston; and Duarte Geraldino from Al Jazeera Digital and “PBS NewsHour.”  Winners in the Radio Local category included: Julie DiCaro and Maggie Hendricks, hosts of “The Julie and Maggie Show” on Entercom sports talker WSCR, Chicago; “The Jason & Alex Show” on Hubbard Radio’s KTMY, Minneapolis’; Jillian Barberie, morning personality on Cumulus Media’s  KABC-AM, Los Angeles; and Tara Granahan, talk show on Cumulus’ news/talk WPRO-AM, Providence.  See all the winners here.  The National Gracie Award honorees were recognized at the Gracies Gala on May 21 at The Beverly Wilshire in Beverly Hills.

Democratic Debate/2020 Presidential Race, Immigration Policy/Detention Facilities/Wayfair Protest, G20 Summit, Mueller to Testify, Iran Tensions, and Dominican Republic Tourist Deaths Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (6/26).  Wednesday night’s debate featuring half of the Democrats seeking their party’s nomination; the Trump administration’s Southern border policies, the conditions at U.S. detention centers, and Wayfair employees’ protests over contracts to supply furniture to child detention centers; the G20 Summit in Osaka and President Trump’s plans to meet with Vladimir Putin; former special counsel Robert Mueller to testify before a House Judiciary subcommittee; the diplomatic break between Tehran and Washington; and the deaths and illnesses affecting travelers to the Dominican Republic 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. Urban programming pro Kenny Smoov is promoted to vice president, urban formats for Cumulus Media, a role in which he will serve as a corporate programming resource for the company’s 37 urban outlets.  Smoov has been with Cumulus since 2003 and is program director and morning host for urban contemporary WQQK, Nashville “92Q,” role in which he will continue…..Also at Cumulus MediaPatrick Scott is upped to program director for CHR WLTO-FM, Lexington, Kentucky “Hot 102.5.”  For the past three years, he’s been promotions and marketing director for Cumulus’ five Lexington stations…..Adams Radio of Delmarva names Angela Caswell senior account manager for the five-station music radio cluster that includes rock WZBH, Millsboro, Delaware “The Beach”; CHR WOCQ, Berlin, Maryland “OC 104”; classic rock WGBG, Fruitland, Maryland “BIG 107.7”; country WUSX, Seaford, Delaware; and WOQC-HD2 “KOOL Oldies.”  Caswell most recently served in the sales department at Delmarva Broadcasting, which recently sold its radio properties to Forever Media.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

| February 20, 2019

iHeartMedia and ‘Disgraceland’ Creator Announce Deal; Season 3 to Premiere on Radio. Season 3 of the true crime podcast “Disgraceland” – produced and hosted by Jake Brennan – will be available on the iHeartRadio platform, it was announced at today’s Winter Podcast Upfront.  In announcing the deal, iHeartMedia notes that each new episode will premiere on its broadcast radio stations before being available digitally.  The first episode of Season 3 is part-one of a two-part program about Kurt Cobain and Courtney Love.  Brennan says, “I can’t wait for ‘Disgraceland’ listeners to hear Season 3. They can expect more of the same highly entertaining stories from the seedy underbelly of rock and roll past and present, but with a whole new cast of characters: Kurt and Courtney, Ike and Tina, Johnny Cash and Amy Winehouse to name a few.  More death, self-destruction, scandal, amazing music, and pre-set mellotron loops.”  Brennan will also create new, original podcasts later this year.  Two of those include: “Rocka Rolla,” focusing on the “madness and genius of Phil Spector,” and “The 27 Club,” a new anthology series that explores the lives of rock stars who died mysteriously at the age of 27.

February 19 Declared Jillian Barberie Breast Cancer Awareness Day in LA. Yesterday (2/19) was declared “Jillian Barberie Breast Cancer Awareness Day” in the City of Los Angeles. The KABC-AM, Los Angeles morning personality announced late last year that she had been diagnosed with breast cancer. The declaration from the office of Councilman Bob Blumenfield states that Barberie “made her recovery journey public to encourage, support and honor the tens of thousands of women and their family members who endure the same challenge.” Blumenfield says, “Jillian has made honesty, full public disclosure and transparency a hallmark of her storied and acclaimed media career. When she was given a life altering diagnosis, she decided to step up and use her experiences to shed more light on this disease.  Early detection is vital and for the sake of the countless families who are impacted by it every day, we must continue to break down stigmas around cancer.”  Barberie reponds, “I am beyond moved and honored to receive this recognition. My fight is the fight of so many and I am committed to raising the awareness of the impact of breast cancer on so many women and their families. My thanks to Councilman Blumenfield and the city council, for this great honor, to all my colleagues at KABC and Cumulus Los Angeles for their support, and to the many people who have sent their messages of love.” Barberie co-hosts KABC’s “The Morning Drive” with John Phillips.

‘Motley Fool Money’ Celebrates 10 Years.  “Motley Fool Money” host Chris Hill checks in with TALKERS magazine to report the show is celebrating its 10th anniversary.  Hill says “Motley Fool Money” launched on February 22, 2009 as a 15-minute, weekly podcast.  A year later it made the leap to radio as a nationally syndicated program.  It currently airs on 55 stations across the U.S. He says the program paved the way for a series of finance-related podcasts that the company now produces.

Border Wall, Trump-Russia Investigation, 2020 Presidential Hopefuls, Lara Logan Journalism Criticism, Covington Student Sues Washington Post, Jussie Smollett Case, Venezuela Unrest, Catholic Clergy Abuse Scandal, NFL-Kaepernick Settlement, NBA/NCAA Action Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (2/19).The U.S.-Mexico border wall project, President Trump’s emergency declaration, and the 16 states suing over the emergency declaration; the growing list of Democrats entering the 2020 presidential race, including Bernie Sanders; former CBS News chief foreign affairs correspondent Lara Logan’s criticism of agenda-driven journalism; the family of Covington Catholic student Nicholas Sandmann sues the Washington Post for $250 million; the investigation into actor Jussie Smollett’s claim of being assaulted in Chicago; President Trump ramps up criticism of Nicolas Maduro’s regime in Venezuela amidst the political unrest; the latest revelations of sexual abuse in the Catholic Church; the settlement of Colin Kaepernick’s collusion suit against the NFL; and NBA and NCAA basketball action were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

iHeartRadio Music Festival Returns to Las Vegas September 20-21. The eighth iHeartRadio Music Festival will take place this year on September 20-21 in Las Vegas, iHeartMedia announced today (2/20). The evening performances will take place at the T-Mobile Arena and the Daytime Stage will take place at the Las Vegas Festival Grounds on Saturday, September 21. The Daytime Stage features performances by both popular and emerging artists.  As it has done in the past, the festival will broadcast live via iHeartMedia radio stations will be featured as an exclusive national television broadcast special on The CW Network at a later date.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. On-air pro Jason Kidd is moving from Cumulus Media’s hot AC WRXQ, Washington – in the process of being sold to religious broadcaster Educational Media Foundation – to Entercom’s classic hits WIAD “94.7 The Drive” to host the morning drive program, effective immediately.  Entercom Washington SVP and market manager Phil Zachary says, “Jason’s boundless energy and local connection to the D.C. market made him a strong candidate early in the search process.  Once we had the opportunity to meet and discuss his innovative ideas, there was no doubt that Jason was ideally suited to host mornings on ‘The Drive.’”…..Beasley Media Group Philadelphia announces Nicole Michalik is named the new weekday afternoon drive personality on country WXTU, effective February 25.  Michalik appeared on the radio in Philly on WISX-FM and WIOQ-FM.  She’s also been on television as a contestant on NBC-TV’s “The Biggest Loser.”  She is currently hosting the podcast “Why Are You Following Me?”  She replaces Mark Razz, who was recently promoted to program director and is currently splitting the midday shift with Brian Mckay…..Sales pro Andy Anderson is appointed president of sales for American Urban Radio Networks.  In this role, Anderson will be responsible for the network’s sales, marketing strategy, digital expansion and new business development.  He’s been with AURN for the past 11 years as vice president sales for the Eastern Region…..The YEA Networks-syndicated Tino Cochino Radio show adds another new affiliate.  Saga Communications’ hip hop WMXZ-HD2/W257BQ, Charleston, South Carolina “99.3 The Box” is airing the program from 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm…..SiriusXM announces that alternative rockers Weezer will perform in an exclusive concert on Wednesday, February 27 at the Black Cat nightclub in Washington, DC.  The intimate set for SiriusXM listeners will feature Weezer performing music from their new album, Weezer (Black Album) ahead of its March 1 release via Crush Music/Atlantic Records.  In addition to their new music, the performance will also feature Weezer playing numerous hits from their iconic albums as well as covers from their most recent hit covers album, Weezer (Teal Album).….The Tom Joyner Foundation’s “Party with a Purpose” cruise to benefit Historically Black Colleges and Universities sets sail on its epic 20th voyage from Miami on April 7.  The Carnival Magic cruise makes stops at Amber Cove, San Juan, and St. Thomas.  This year’s cruise will feature entertainment favorites, informative seminars, morning inspiration, fitness classes, notable celebrities, and popular theme nights. Music superstars including Janet Jackson, Maxwell, Charlie WilsonFantasia, KEM, and more will headline the entertainment lineup.  Joyner is pictured below on deck with listeners on a previous cruise.

January 2019 PPM Data – Round One. Information for the January 2019 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. Nielsen Audio’s January 2019 survey period covered January 3 – 30. 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.

New York City

Spoken-Word Formats – In three straight decreases, iHeartMedia news/talk WOR lost a collective nine-tenths (2.3 – 2.0 – 1.7 – 1.4, 6+), but “710 The Voice of New York” retrieves four-tenths to 1.8 (6+) and returns to the top twenty (#21 to #20). WOR was a cumulative +.6 in September and October (1.7 – 2.0 – 2.3, 6+). When Townsquare Media news/talk WKXW dropped two-tenths in “Holiday” 2018, it ended eight straight monthly reports without a loss that netted one-half share (1.1 – 1.1 – 1.1 – 1.1 – 1.1 – 1.3 – 1.4 – 1.5 – 1.6, 6+). In January 2019, “New Jersey 101.5” is flat at 1.4 (#21 to #22, 6+). Up or flat five straight sweeps for an overall increase of three-tenths (.9 – .9 – 1.1 – 1.1 – 1.2 – 1.2, 6+), Cumulus Media news/talk WABC lost one-tenth in “Holiday” 2018 but regains it in January 2019 (1.2 – 1.1 – 1.2, unchanged at #24, 6+).

Three losses in succession by Entercom sports talk WFAN resulted in a -1.2 (4.4 – 3.7 – 3.5 – 3.2, 6+), but the flagship of the New York Giants, Brooklyn Nets, and Yankees is up one-tenth to 3.3 (tenth to ninth, 6+). Off a cumulative four-tenths in December and “Holiday” 2018 (1.8 – 1.5- 1.4, 6+), WEPN “98.7 ESPN New York” picks up four-tenths (1.8, #21 to #20, 6+). Entering the December sweep, the flagship of the New York Jets and New York Knicks notched an overall gain of four-tenths via four straight up or flat monthlies (1.4 – 1.4 – 1.4 – 1. 7 – 1.8, 6+).

Entercom all-news siblings WINS and WCBS-AM transform their combined -.9 in “Holiday” 2018 into a January 2019 +1.3, as the former is up one full-share (3.8 – 4.8, seventh to fifth, 6+), while the latter improves by three-tenths (3.0 – 3.3, #13 to #9, 6+). WINS was off one-half share in “Holiday” 2018, while WCBS-AM is rebounding from a “Holiday” 2018 loss of four-tenths, which halted four consecutive upticks that produced a net gain of eight-tenths (2.6 – 2.8 – 2.9 – 3.2 – 3.4, 6+).

While flat at 3.2 (6+), WNYC-FM departs the top ten (#10 to #11). The WNYC Broadcasting Foundation news/talk outlet had been a cumulative -.7 (May, June, and July); +.7 (August); -.6 (September); +.6 (October); -.4 (November); +.6 (December); and -.4 (“Holiday” 2018). Co-owned news/talk WNYC-AM, which logged a .5 (6+) in each of the past four sweeps, is up one-tenth to .6 (#29 to #27, 6+).

New York City Music Formats – Erasing its combined December and “Holiday” 2018 -1.2 (6.3 – 5.4 – 5.1, 6+) with a January 2019 +1.3 to 6.4 (6+), Entercom classic hits-oldies WCBS-FM “101.1 New York’s Greatest Hits” pushes up from third to second. It is one-tenth ahead of Emmis urban AC WBLS “107.5 #1 For R&B,” which is up seven-tenths (5.6 – 6.3, 6+), yet backslides from second to third. Major fluctuations continue for Spanish Broadcasting System Spanish tropical WSKQ “La Mega 97.9,” which was a collective +.5 (October and November, 4.3  – 4.7 – 4.8, 6+); -.6 (December); +.8 (“Holiday” 2018, 4.2 – 5.0, 6+); and now +.5 in January 2019 (5.5, steady at #4, 6+). Off a collective three-tenths in three straight down or flat sweeps (2.3 – 2.2 – 2.2 – 2.0, 6+), Cumulus Media country WNSH is up four-tenths to 2.4 (#19 to #16, 6+). Next month, the (pending) new owner of “94.7 Nash FM” – Entercom – will begin operating the station. While it is #1 for the 19th successive sweep, iHeartMedia adult contemporary WLTW “106.7 Lite FM” falters by -4.9 to 7.6 (6+). “Lite FM” was a combined +5.8 in December and “Holiday” 2018 (6.7 – 9.1 – 12.5, 6+). In four straight up or flat reports, WNYC Broadcasting Foundation-owned WQXR netted nine-tenths (1.4 – 1.6 – 1.6 – 2.0 – 2.3, 6+), but “New York’s Classical Music Radio Station” surrenders all of it and fades from the top twenty (1.4, -.9, #15 to #22, 6+). Unchanged at #8, Emmis rhythmic CHR WQHT “Hot 97”  is without an increase for the eighth straight time for a cumulative loss of one-half share (4.0 – 3.9 – 3.9 – 3.9 – 3.7 – 3.7 – 3.7 – 3.7 – 3.5, 6+). The sale of Cumulus Media’s WPLJ (2.0 – 2.3, +.3, #19 to #17, 6+) to Educational Media Foundation is expected to close in early-summer, at which time EMF will flip the hot AC to contemporary Christian.

Los Angeles

Spoken-Word Formats – An overall -1.2 via eight straight down or flat trends  (4.4 – 4.1 – 4.1 – 3.8 – 3.7 – 3.7 – 3.6 – 3.5 – 3.2, 6+), iHeartMedia news/talk KFI “AM 640” wipes out half that deficit with a +.6 to 3.8 (6+, ninth to sixth). Co-owned news/talk KEIB “AM 1150 The Patriot” is up one-tenth (.8 – .9, 6+) and carries on at #31. Regaining the two-tenths it dropped in “Holiday” 2018, Salem Media Group news/talk KRLA “AM 870 The Answer” (.8 – .6 – .8, 6+) advances from #38 to #33. Off one-tenth (.7 – .6, 6+), Cumulus Media-owned KABC “790 News-Talk-Evolved” slips from #33 to #37. Prior to “Holiday” 2018, KABC was up two-tenths in consecutive sweeps (.3 – .5 – .7, 6+).

The AM flagship of the National Football Conference champion Los Angeles Rams KSPN “710 ESPN” – records a one-half share gain (1.6, #27 to #25, 6+). Disney-owned KSPN was down two-tenths in consecutive survey periods (1.5 – 1.3 – 1.1, 6+), after practically doubling its 6+-stat (+.7) through three straight gains (.8 – .9 – 1.3 – 1.5, 6+). Meanwhile, iHeartMedia’s similarly-formatted/Los Angeles Chargers AM key station KLAC “AM 570 LA Sports” gains two-tenths to .9 (#33 to #31, 6+). The flagship of the NL champion Los Angeles Dodgers posted ten successive ratings periods without a loss – in which time it more than quintupled (+1.7) its 6+ AQH share (.4 – .4 – .5 – .9 – .9 – 1.0 – 1.1 – 1.2 – 1.2 – 1.7 – 2.1, 6+), but then plummeted by -1.4 in December.  

Obliterating its “Holiday” 2018 loss of one-half share with a January 2019 +1.1 (2.6 – 3.7, 6+), Entercom’s KNX “1070 News Radio,” which was up three-tenths in December, returns to the top ten (#13 to #7).

Within 2.3 – 2.7 range in each of the last 11 sweeps (2.7 – 2.6 – 2.7 – 2.7 – 2.5 – 2.5 – 2.5 – 2.6 – 2.7 – 2.5 – 2.3, 6+), Pasadena City College news/talk KPCC “The Voice of Southern California” erupts with a one-half share increase to 2.8 (6+) and rockets into the top ten (#16 to #10).

Los Angeles Music Formats – Even though it erases “Holiday” 2018’s -.9 with a January 2019 +1.0, iHeartMedia hot AC KBIG “104.3 My-FM” (4.9 – 4.0 – 5.0, 6+) remains in third-place. When KBIG gained two-tenths in December, it snapped at five a consecutive string of decreases that resulted in an overall loss of -1.1 (5.8 – 5.7 – 5.6 – 5.5 – 4.8 – 4.7, 6+). “My FM” spent five successive months at #1 before being dislodged in October. Within 4.0 – 4.9 range (6+) for 19 straight survey periods, co-owned mainstream CHR KIIS faltered by one-half share to 3.5 in “Holiday” 2018, but “102.7 Kiss FM” roars back with a +.8 to 4.3 (fifth to fourth, 6+). Meanwhile, Entercom’s similarly-formatted KAMP “97.1 Amp Radio” is within 2.0 – 2.9 territory for the 20th  time in a row (2.3 – 2.4, +.1, 6+), yet drifts from #16 to #20. Gaining seven-tenths (each) are KAMP’s classic-hits oldies and smooth AC cluster-mates KRTH “K-Earth 101” (5.1, steady at #2, 6+) and KTWV “94-7 The Wave” (3.6 – 4.3, unchanged at #4, 6+), as well as Entravision Spanish adult hits KLYY “Jose” (1.1 – 1.8, #23, 6+). On top in October 2018, “K-Earth” regains in its entirety the seven-tenths it lost in five straight down or flat trends (5.1 – 5.0 – 5.0 – 4.5 – 4.4 – 4.4, 6+). KLYY’s co-owned/similarly-formatted KSSE, which was trending 1.1 – .8 (6+) disappears from print. Unlisted the past four sweeps, Grupo Radio Centro regional Mexican KXOS “Mega 96.3” returns with a 1.0 (#30, 6+), while California State University – Northridge triple A KCSN debuts with a .6 (#37, 6+). An overall +8.4 via five upticks in succession (4.6 – 4.7 – 4.9 – 5.1 – 9.0 – 13.0, 6+), iHeartMedia adult contemporary KOST surrenders a -6.8 to 6.2 (6+), but “Coast 103.5” is #1 for the fourth straight time. Down or flat the past eight sweeps for an overall -1.2 (2.6 – 2.1 – 2.1 – 2.1 – 2.0 – 1.8 – 1.7 – 1.7 – 1.4, 6+), Univision Radio regional Mexican KSCA “Zona MX 101.9” picks up two-tenths to (1.6, 6+), yet slips from #24 to #25. A loss of one-half share by Spanish Broadcasting System Spanish contemporary KXOL (3.3 – 2.8, sixth to tenth, 6+) takes “Mega 96.3” to its lowest 6+-showing (2.8) since June 2018’s 2.6. In addition to being without an increase for the sixth straight time for an overall loss of one-half share (2.5 – 2.4 – 2.4 – 2.3 – 2.2 – 2.1 – 2.0, 6+), Liberman Broadcasting regional Mexican KBUE “Que Buena” exits the top twenty (#20 to #22).


Spoken-Word Formats – A combined -1.0 in December and “Holiday” 2018 (3.2 – 2.6 – 2.2, 6+), Tribune Media news/talk WGN wipes away 80% of that deficit with a +.8 to 3.0, propelling itself back into the top twenty (#21 to #12). Immediately prior to the December sweep, the key station of the Chicago White Sox logged three straight up or flat trends for a collective +.7 (2.5 – 2.8 – 2.8 – 3.2, 6+). Off one-half share in December and “Holiday” 2018 (1.6 – 1.4 – 1.1, 6+), Cumulus Media news/talk WLS-AM answers with a January 2019 gain of six-tenths to 1.7 (#26 to #22, 6+).

Up an overall one-half share in three straight gains (2.8 – 2.9 – 3.0 – 3.3, 6+), Entercom sports talk WSCR “670 The Score” (flagship for both the Cubs and Bulls) inches up from ninth to eighth. WSCR was up eight-tenths in September and then -1.5 in October and November (4.3 – 4.2 – 2.8, 6+). Flat at 1.2 (6+), ESPN-owned WMVP slips from #24 to #26. Prior to surrendering three-tenths in “Holiday” 2018, “ESPN Chicago 1000” was up one half-share in four straight sweeps without a loss (1.0 – 1.2 – 1.4 – 1.4 – 1.5, 6+).

Not only does Entercom news outlet WBBM-AM substitute its “Holiday” 2018 loss of four-tenths with a January 2019 gain of nine-tenths (5.3 – 6.2, 6+), the flagship of the NFL’s Chicago Bears marches from second to first. WBBM-AM – which was a collective +1.1 via four consecutive up or flat trends (4.6 – 4.8 – 5.6 – 5.7 – 5.7, 6+) – shifted from first to second in December.

Regaining all of the three-tenths it lost in “Holiday” 2018 and one-tenth more (2.6 – 3.0, +.4, #14 to #12, 6+), Chicago Public Media news/talk WBEZ logs its best 6+-showing since April 2018 (3.0, as well). Its loss of three-tenths in “Holiday” 2018 ended four straight up or flat trends that generated a gain of seven-tenths (2.2 – 2.3 – 2.3 – 2.9 – 2.9, 6+).

Chicago Music Formats – With a May 2018 – “Holiday” 2018 topline between 4.1 – 4.9 (4.7 – 4.9 – 4.8 – 4.9 – 4.1 – 4.6 – 4.5 – 4.2 – 4.4, 6+), Hubbard Broadcasting hot AC WTMX “101. 9 The Mix” explodes with a +1.0 to 5.4 (fifth to third, 6+). This is its best 6+-stat in exactly one year (5.4, as well in January 2018). While it remains at #6, co-owned classic rock WDRV “97.1 The Drive” adds six-tenths (3.9 – 4.5, 6+) for its highest 6+-showing (4.5) since 5.5 in August 2018. An increase of nine-tenths to 5.5 (fourth to second, 6+) by Univision Radio regional Mexican WOJO “Que Buena 105.1” curtails its December – “Holiday” 2018 mini-slide that resulted in a loss of eight-tenths (5.4 – 4.7 – 4.6, 6+). By picking up one-tenth to 3.7 (steady at #7, 6+), Cumulus Media-owned WLS-FM “94.7 Chicago’s Classic Hits” halts four straight setbacks that resulted in a cumulative -1.8 (5.4 – 5.0 – 4.8 – 4.0 – 3.6, 6+). Improving by six-tenths and one-half share, respectively, are adult contemporary outlets WSHE (2.5 – 3.1, 6+) and WRME-LP “87.7 FM Me TV – Me Music” (2.8, 6+). Hubbard Broadcasting’s “100.3 SHE” leaps into the top ten (#16 to #10),while Venture Technologies Group’s “FM 87.7 Me TV” advances from #19 to #16. WRME-LP had been down or flat five successive times for a collective -1.5 (3.8 – 3.8 – 3.4 – 3.3 – 2.7 – 2.3, 6+). A combined +10.1 in December and “Holiday” 2018 (3.2 – 8.4 – 13.3, 6+), the market’s other AC – iHeartMedia’s WLIT “93.9 Lite FM” – surrenders a -8.3 to 5.0 (6+), segueing from first to fourth. This marks the fifth time in a row that Entercom-owned WUSN “US-99 Chicago’s Hottest Country” is without an increase for a net loss of nine-tenths (3.7 – 3.7 – 3.7 – 3.4 – 2.8 – 2.8, #13 to #16, 6+). Entering the “Holiday” 2018 sweep, WUSN had been within 3.0 – 3.9 range in each of the prior 17 ratings periods. A collective -1.3 in seven straight down or flat trends (6.1 – 6.0 – 5.7 – 5.7 – 5.3 – 5.3 – 4.9 – 4.8, 6+), iHeartMedia urban AC WVAZ “V-103” drops from third to fifth.

San Francisco

Spoken-Word Formats –Off three times in succession for a -1.0 (3.1 – 2.6 – 2.3 – 2.1, 6+), Cumulus Media news/talk KSFO picks up two-tenths to 2.3 (6+), yet backslides from #15 to #16. KSFO was up seven-tenths in October, after being a combined -1.0 in August and September (3.4 – 3.0- 2.4, 6+). Cluster-mate KGO is a cumulative -.6 in four successive down or flat sweeps 2.2 – 2.1 – 2.1 – 1.8 – 1.6, 6+) and departs the top twenty (#20 to #22, 6+).

Notwithstanding that it gains two-tenths (2.7 – 2.9, 6+), co-owned KNBR “The Sports Leader” moves from #12 to #13. Prior to November, KNBR was without an increase the previous three ratings periods for a cumulative -1.2 (3.7 – 3.7 – 2.9 – 2.5, 6+). Continuing an up/down pattern (2.0 – 2.1 – 1.9 – 2.2 – 1.8 – 2.0, 6+), Entercom’s similarly-formatted KGMZ “95.7 The Game” continues at #18. KGMZ was a combined +.6 in three straight up or flat trends (1.5 – 1.8 – 2.0 – 2.1, 6+), before faltering by two-tenths in November.

Not only does all-news cluster-mate KCBS-AM log its third consecutive positive spike for an overall +1.7 (5.3 – 5.7 – 5.8 – 7.0, 6+), it progresses from third to second. At #2 ten (10) straight sweeps before shifting to #3 in December, KCBS-AM was in 5.3 – 5.8 range (6+) between February 2018 – “Holiday” 2018.

A one-half share improvement returns KQED (7.5 – 8.0, 6+) to #1. Following 11 straight months at #1, the Northern California Public Broadcasting news/talk station fell to #2 in “Holiday” 2018. This (8.0) is its best 6+-performance since May’s 8.1. In eight successive sweeps without a loss, San Francisco Unified School District’s KALW “91.7 Local Public Radio” nets six-tenths (.4 – .5 – .5 – .5 – .6 – .6 – .7 – .9 – 1.0, 29 to #28, 6+).

San Francisco Music Formats – Down four-tenths in December and “Holiday” 2018 (3.8 – 3.7 – 3.4, 6+), iHeartMedia’s KYLD “Wild 94.9 – The Bay’s #1 Hit Music Station” answers with a +.8 to 4.2 (sixth to fifth, 6+). Similarly, Entercom hot AC KLLC “Alice @ 97.3,” which declined by one-half share in December and “Holiday” 2018   (3.5 – 3.4 – 3.0, 6+) bounces back with a January 2019 increase of seven-tenths to 3.7 (ninth to sixth, 6+). After posting one-half share increases in consecutive sweeps (2.1 – 2.6 – 3.1, 6+), University of Southern California-owned classical outlet KDFC dropped one-tenth in “Holiday” 2018 but notches a +.6 in January 2019 (3.6, ninth to seventh, 6+). Displaying increases of one-half share (each) are iHeartMedias KISQ “98.1 The Breeze” (4.3, steady at #4, 6+) and Cumulus Media classic rocker KSAN “107.7 The Bone” (3.1, #13 to #9, 6+). “The Breeze” had been off a combined nine-tenths in three setbacks in a row (4.7 – 4.4 – 4.1 – 3.8, 6+), while “The Bone” lost eight-tenths in December and “Holiday” 2018 (3.4 – 2.8 – 2.6, 6+). An overall -.9 in five consecutive negative or flat trends (2.2 – 2.2 – 2.0 – 1.7 – 1.6 – 1.3, 6+), Entercom’s KUFX “98.5 K-Fox The South Bay’s Classic Rock” adds two-tenths to 1.5 (#25 to #23, 6+). At the same time, Empire Broadcasting’s KRTY “Hot Country 95.3,” which hadn’t had an increase in five straight reports and surrendered 50% (.9) of its 6+-share in that stretch (1.8 – 1.5 – 1.3 – 1.3 – 1.2 – .9, 6+), is up two-tenths to 1.1 (flat at #27, 6+). After improving its 6+-stat by seven full-shares in December and “Holiday” 2018 (3.7 – 6.4 – 10.7, 6+), Bonneville-owned adult contemporary KOIT-FM falters by -5.9 to 4.8 (6+) and shifts from first to third. For the third sweep in a row, iHeartMedia-owned urban contemporary KMEL “106.1 #1 for Hip-Hop and R&B” notches a fluctuation of one-half share. It was -.5 (3.5 – 3.0, December, 6+); +.5 (3.0 – 3.5, “Holiday” 2018, 6+); and now -.5 in January 2019 (3.5 – 3.0, fifth to tenth, 6+). In six straight reports without an increase (2.1 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 1.7 – 1.7 – 1.4 – 1.4, #23 to #24, 6+), Entercom alternative KITS “Alt 105.3 The Bay Area’s Alternative” is an overall -.7.


Spoken-Word Formats – A combined -.9 in December and “Holiday” 2018 (3.2 – 2.7 – 2.3, 6+), Cumulus Media’s WBAP “News Talk 820” regains one-half share to 2.8 (#19 to #16, 6+). Immediately prior to December, WBAP was without a loss five monthlies in a row for a collective +1.1 (2.1 – 2.1 – 2.2 – 2.4 – 2.8 – 3.2, 6+). Progressing from #35 to #34, Salem Media Group-owned KSKY “660 AM The Answer” is up two-tenths to 3.7 (6+), thus ending four straight down or flat trends that resulted in a loss of four-tenths (.9 – .9 – .7 – .6 – .5, 6+), while Cumulus Media’s KLIF-AM “570 News & Information” is without an increase for the fifth time in a row (.5 – .4 – .4 – .4 – .3 – .3, #36 to #37, 6+).

In seven straight sweeps without a loss (2.1 – 2.3 – 2.3 – 2.4 – 2.5 – 2.6 – 2.6 – 3.1, 6+), Entercom’s KRLD-FM “105.3 The Fan” is a +1.0 and climbs from #14 to #13. Up by one-half share as well in January 2019 is Cumulus Media-owned KTCK “The Ticket – All Sports, All The Time” (2.9, #18 to #15, 6+), which had been off a collective eight-tenths in three dips in a row (3.2 – 3.1 – 2.9 – 2.4, 6+). Even though ESPN’s KESN is down one-tenth (1.0 – .9, 6+), “103.3 ESPN Dallas” advances from #33 to #32.

Having been down or flat five straight times for an overall decline of three-tenths (2.3 – 2.2 – 2.2 – 2.2 – 2.0 – 2.0, 6+), Entercom news-talk hybrid KRLD-AM “News Radio 1080” picks up two-tenths to 2.2 (6+) and returns to the top twenty (#23 to #20). Going back to “Holiday” 2016, KRLD-AM remains within a high of 2.8 and a low of 2.0.

Locked on 3.1 (6+) in December and “Holiday” 2018,North Texas Public Broadcasting news/talk KERA is up three-tenths to 3.4 (#13 to #12, 6+). Before September’s +.4 to 3.0, KERA logged a 6+-stat in the two-share range for 37 consecutive sweeps.

Dallas Music Formats – Trending 3.7 – 3.8 – 3.6 (November – December – “Holiday” 2018, 6+), Entercom adult hits KJKK busts out a +1.3 to 4.9 (6+), elevating “100.3 Jack FM” from ninth all the way to second. The rollercoaster ride continues for WAY Media contemporary Christian KAWA “WAY-FM Uplifting-Upbeat-Real,” which has been +.7 (September); -.8 (October); +.6 (November); a combined -.9 in December and “Holiday” 2018 (2.1 – 1.9 – 1.2, 6+); and now +.6 in January 2019 (1.2 – 1.8, #30 to #24, 6+). Improving by six-tenths as well in January 2019 is Cumulus Media country outlet KPLX “99.5 The Wolf,” which not only returns to the top ten (3.8, #11 to #9, 6+), it pulls the plug on three straight negative trends that resulted in a -1.0 (4.2 – 4.1 – 3.6 – 3.2, 6+). It is one-tenth behind co-owned/similarly-formatted KSCS (3.8 – 3.9, +.1, 6+), which had been -1.4 in six straight down or flat reports (5.2 – 4.3 – 4.3 – 4.1 – 4.1 – 4.1 – 3.8, 6+); “New Country 96.3” backslides from sixth to eighth. Up by one-half share (each) are Univision Radio regional Mexican KLNO “Que Buena 94.1” (3.5 – 4.0, tenth to sixth, 6+); Entercom’s similarly-formatted KMVK “La Grande 107.5” (2.5 – 3.0, #16 to #14, 6+); and Educational Media Foundation contemporary Christian KYDA “Air 1 Worship Now” (1.5 – 2.0, #21, 6+). In eight successive sweeps without a loss, iHeartMedia adult contemporary KDGE almost tripled (+4.4) its 6+-stat (2.7 – 2.9 – 3.1 – 3.2 – 3.2 – 3.5 – 3.7 – 5.1 – 7.1, 6+), but “Star 102.1” regresses by -2.9 to 4.2 (6+) and segues from first to fourth. Replacing it at #1 is co-owned CHR KHKS “106.1 Kiss – Dallas/Fort Worth’s Hit Music” (5.9 – 6.1, +.2, 6+). On top 12 straight times, “Kiss” shifted to #3 in “Holiday” 2018. On the heels of a +1.8 in “Holiday” 2018, Entercom classic hits-oldies KLUV surrenders all but three-tenths of that gain (6.1 – 4.6, -1.5, second to third, 6+). Four successive improvements netted Salem Media Group contemporary Christian KLTY a combined +1.4 (3.2 – 3.8 – 4.0 – 4.4 – 4.6, 6+), but “94.9 Your Life … Inspired” forfeits one full-share to 3.6, dropping it from the top ten (#4 to #11). When Service Broadcasting urban AC KRNB gained four-tenths in “Holiday” 2018, it ended five consecutive sweeps without an increase that accounted for a combined -1.0 (3.1 – 3.1 – 2.9 – 2.8 – 2.3 – 2.1, 6+). In January 2019 though, “105.7 Smooth R&B” returns eight-tenths (2.5 – 1.7, 6+) and fades from the top twenty (#16 to #26). Co-owned urban contemporary KKDA “K-104” is without an increase for the third straight time for a collective loss of six-tenths (3.3 – 3.2 – 3.2 – 2.7, #11 to #17, 6+).


Spoken-Word Formats – For the third sweep in succession, iHeartMedia news/talk KTRH records a move of seven-tenths: -.7 December (4.3 – 3.6, 6+); -.7 “Holiday” 2018 (3.6 – 2.9, 6+); and now +.7 January 2019 (2.9 – 3.6, #16 to #12, 6+). “News Radio 740” posted a November gain of six-tenths to 4.3, its strongest 6+-stat since February 2017’s 4.4.

In six straight up or flat trends (.9 – .9 – 1.1 – 1.1 – 1.1 – 1.3 – 1.4, 6+), Entercom’s KILT-AM “Sports Radio 610” was a collective +.5, but the AM flagship of the Houston Texans drops two-tenths to 1.2 (6+) and repeats at #22. After four straight monthlies of notching a .8 (6+), Gow Communications’ KFNC “ESPN 97.5” is up one-tenth to .9 (#25 to #23, 6+), while KTRH cluster-mate/Houston Astros flagship KBME “Sports Talk 790” regains the one-tenth it dropped in “Holiday” 2018 (.6 – .5 – .6, #28 to #27, 6+).

Down or flat the past six ratings periods for a collective -1.5 (3.4 – 3.2 – 3.2 – 3.0 – 2.4 – 2.4 – 1.9, 6+), University of Houston news/talker KUHF erases roughly half the deficit (2.7, +.8, #21 to #18, 6+).

Houston Music Formats – After seven straight sweeps without an increase for an overall -1.8 since June 2018 (5.0 – 5.0 – 4.7 – 4.5 – 4.3 – 4.2 – 3.8 – 3.2, 6+), iHeartMedia alternative KTBZ “94.5 The Buzz” posts a gain of seven-tenths (3.9, #14 to #10, 6+). Improving by seven-tenths as well is Entercom’s KILT-FM “100.3 The Bull” (3.8 – 4.5, ninth to eighth, 6+), which pulls ahead of Cox Media Group’s similarly-formatted KKBQ “93-Q Country,” which despite gaining four-tenths to 4.3 (6+), slips from eighth to ninth. KKBQ was a collective -1.5 in four straight reports without an increase (5.4 – 4.7 – 4.6 – 3.9 – 3.9, 6+). Improving by one-half share (each) are Univision Radio regional Mexican KLTN “Que Buena 102.9” (6.5 – 7.0, unchanged at #2, 6+) and Cox Media Group classic rocker KGLK “The Eagle” (5.3, sixth to fourth, 6+). Prior to plummeting -1.5 in “Holiday” 2018, “Que Buena 102.9” was a collective +3.3 through five successive increases (4.7 – 5.0 – 5.2 – 6.0 – 6.8 – 8.0, 6+). “The Eagle” pulls the plug on three consecutive downward moves that resulted in a collective loss of six-tenths (5.4 – 5.3 – 5.1 – 4.8, 6+). Steady at #6, KSBJ Educational Foundation contemporary Christian KSBJ “89.3 – God Listens” is an overall +1.5 via seven straight sweeps without a loss (3.3 – 3.7 – 3.7 – 3.7 – 4.0 – 4.2 – 4.8 – 4.8, 6+). A cumulative +4.9 via three consecutive upticks (7.2 – 7.5 – 9.7 – 12.1, 6+), iHeartMedia’s KODA “Sunny 99.1” erodes by -3.5 to 8.6 (6+) but is the market leader for the tenth straight time. In “Holiday” 2017, “Sunny” recorded a 12.5, the station’s strongest 6+-stat since “Holiday” 2016’s 10.3 and the first time any Houston facility reached double-digits (6+) since that particular ratings period. Off seven-tenths (3.8 – 3.1, 6+), Univision Radio’s KOVE “Amor 106.5” fades from the top ten (#9 to #16) with its lowest 6+-stat (3.1) since July 2018’s 2.8. A collective +1.6 as the result of five positive spikes in succession (3.5 – 3.9 – 4.1 – 4.3 – 4.6 – 5.1, 6+), Radio One rhythmic CHR KBXX “97.9 The Box” drops one-half share to 4.6 (fourth to seventh, 6+). Down one-half share as well in January 2019 is Univision Radio Spanish contemporary KAMA “Latino Mix” (2.2, #17 to #20, 6+), which had been trending 2.7 – 2.7 – 2.8 – 2.7 (6+). An overall -2.0 in six successive sweeps without an increase (5.7 – 5.0 – 4.9 – 4.2 – 3.7 – 3.7 – 3.7, 6+), Entercom adult hits KKHH “95.7 The Spot” continues at #11.


Spoken-Word Formats – A combined -2.1 in December and “Holiday” 2018 (8.6 – 7.9 – 6.5, 6+), Cox Media Group news/talk WSB-AM wipes away two-thirds of that deficit with a +1.4 to 7.9 (6+); moreover, it returns to #1. WSB-AM had been #1 37 sweeps in a row before segueing to #2 in “Holiday” 2018. Prior to November 2018, WSB-AM was a collective +1.1 in three straight gains (7.5 – 7.9 – 8.2 – 8.6, 6+). Flat at 1.2 (6+), WYAY “106.6 Where Atlanta Comes to Talk” remains at #22. WYAY, which Cumulus Media is selling to Educational Media Foundation, was -1.0 in August (2.3 – 1.3, 6+). Following eight consecutive sweeps in a row without a loss for an overall gain of six-tenths (.1 – .2 – .2 – .2 – .4 – .5 – .6 -.6 – .7, 6+), Entercom news/talk WAOK is off two-tenths to .5 (#25 to #28, 6+).

Co-owned sports talk/Atlanta Falcons flagship WZGC “92.9 The Game” is a combined -.5 in “Holiday” 2018 and January 2019 (4.2 – 4.1 – 3.7, 6+) and departs the top ten (#8 to #12). Prior to November 2018, WZGC was an overall +1.7 in four consecutive positive moves (2.2 – 2.5 – 3.2 – 3.3 – 3.9,  6+). Unchanged at #19, Dickey Broadcasting’s WCNN “Sports Radio The Fan” regains half (+.1) of the two-tenths it lost in “Holiday” 2018 (2.0 – 1.8 – 1.9, 6+). After three straight down or flat trends for a collective -.5 (2.4 – 2.0 – 1.9 – 1.9, 6+), the Atlanta Braves flagship picked up one-tenth in December.

Bouncing back from a “Holiday” 2018 loss of six-tenths with a January 2019 +1.0 (3.7 – 4.7, 6+), City of Atlanta Board of Education news/talk WABE zooms back into the top ten (#11 to #6). Immediately before the “Holiday” 2018 ratings period, WABE was a collective +1.2 as a result of five straight up or flat trends (3.1 – 3.5 – 3.8 – 3.9 – 3.9 – 4.3, 6+). Georgia State University news/talk WRAS is down or flat for the third time in a row for a collective loss of three-tenths (1.0 – .7 – .7 – .7, #25 to #26, 6+).

Atlanta Music Formats – Until dropping seven-tenths to 4.4 (6+) in “Holiday” 2018, WAMJ “Majic” had been within 5.1 – 5.6 range (6+) for ten consecutive sweeps. Now in January 2019, the Radio One urban AC posts a +1.0 to 5.4 (seventh to fourth, 6+), its strongest 6+-stat since June 2018’s 5.6. Gospel sibling WPZE “Praise 102.5 Atlanta’s Inspiration Station,” which also lost seven-tenths in “Holiday” 2018, gains one-half share (3.0 – 3.5, #15 to #13, 6+). A combined -1.0 in December and “Holiday” 2018 (4.4 – 3.8 – 3.4, 6+), Cumulus Media-owned WWWQ “Q-100 Atlanta’s New Hits” makes up 70% of that deficit with a +.7 to 4.1 (#12 to #10, 6+). When “Q-100” lost one-tenth in October, it snapped at four a consecutive string of up or flat moves that netted three-tenths (4.0 – 4.0 – 4.2 – 4.2 – 4.3, 6+). Having almost doubled (+4.2) its 6+-share in December and “Holiday” 2018 (4.4 – 5.4 – 8.6, 6+), Salem Media Group contemporary Christian WFSH “The Fish” flounders by -3.7 to 4.9, slipping from first to fourth. In advance of the December sweep, WFSH posted three negative trends in succession that accounted for an overall -1.5 (5.9 – 5.3 – 4.8 – 4.4, 6+). A “Holiday” 2018 increase of one-half share by Cox Media Group adult contemporary WSB-FM halted at three a consecutive string of decreases that accounted for a loss of four-tenths (5.5 – 5.4 – 5.3 – 5.1, 6+), but “B-98.5” erodes by -1.0 in January 2019 (5.6 – 4.6, fifth to seventh, 6+). Down six-tenths to 2.6 (#14 to #16, 6+), Cumulus Media-owned WKHX “Kicks 101.5 – Atlanta’s #1 For Country Hits” puts an end to what was a September 2018 through “Holiday” 2018 up/down pattern (3.4 – 4.0 – 3.7 – 3.8 – 3.2, 6+). Conversely, its format rival, iHeartMedia’s WUBL “94.9 The Bull,” is a collective +1.4 via four straight increases (2.9 – 3.5 – 3.8 – 3.9 – 4.3, 6+) and is steady at #9. November’s gain of six-tenths followed three consecutive decreases that led to a -1.1 (4.0 – 3.8 – 3.7 – 2.9, 6+).


Spoken-Word Formats – A combined -.9 in December and “Holiday” 2018 (2.9 – 2.1 – 2.0, 6+), immediately following seven straight ratings periods without a decrease that generated a +1.4 (1.5 – 1.6 – 1.7 – 2.2 – 2.5 – 2.8 – 2.9 – 2.9, 6+), Entercom’s WPHT “Talk Radio 1210” produces a +.5 to 2.5 (#18 to #17, 6+). Up one-tenth (1.3 – 1.4, 6+), Townsquare Media news/talk WKXW “New Jersey 101.5” climbs from #22 to #21.

An improvement of one-tenth (7.1 – 7.2, 6+) is enough to propel Entercom sports talk WIP from second to first; “Sports Radio 94.1” was #1 in October, as well. The flagship of the Eagles and Phillies was -.8 (February 2018); -2.9 (March); +1.1 (April); -.8 (May); -.5 (June); +.7 (August); +1.4 (October); -1.0 (November); and +.8 (“Holiday” 2018). Without a loss the past four ratings periods for an overall +1.0 (1.8 – 2.5 – 2.7 – 2.7 – 2.8, 6+), Beasley Media Group-owned WPEN-FM “97.5 The Fanatic” is off one-tenth to 2.7 (#12 to #16, 6+). Prior to October, the key station of the 76ers and Flyers was without an improvement the previous five months for an overall -1.0 (2.8 – 2.3 – 2.0 – 2.0 – 1.9 – 1.8, 6+).

After spiraling by eight-tenths in “Holiday” 2018, Entercom’s KYW “News Radio 1060” rebounds with a +.7 (4.3 – 5.0, steady at #7, 6+).

A collective -1.1 via three declines in a row (3.8 – 3.4 – 3.0 – 2.7, 6+), public news/talk WHYY picks up two-tenths to 2.9 (6+) and continues at #14. An August increase of one-half share interrupted three successive negative trends for an overall -1.1 (4.4 – 3.7 – 3.6 – 3.3, 6+).

Philadelphia Music Formats – Trending 6.8 – 6.6 – 6.8 – 6.9 (August through November, 6+), Beasley Media Group’s WMGK dropped seven-tenths in December and then seven-tenths in “Holiday” 2018. “Classic Rock 102.9 MGK,” however, roars back in January 2019 with a +1.6 to 7.1 (fourth to second, 6+) and is one-tenth behind #1 finisher WIP. In mid-November, iHeartMedia transitioned rhythmic hot AC WISX “Real 106.1” to adult contemporary as “106.1 The Breeze – Philly’s Relaxing Favorites.” WISX was off eight-tenths in its first report as an AC (December 2018), but is a combined +1.9 in “Holiday” 2018 and January 2019 (2.5 – 3.0 – 4.4, 6+) and is already in the top ten (#11 to #9). Its format rival – Entercom adult contemporary WBEB “Today’s 101.1 More FM” –  suffers a whopping -10.3 (16.3 – 6.3, 6+) and slips from first to third. In back-to-back gains, WBEB was +10.1 (6.5 – 10.4 – 16.6, 6+).“Today’s 101.1 More FM” was on top from March through June before being dislodged in July. A combined -2.4 in December and “Holiday” 2018 (7.4 – 6.4 – 5.0, 6+), classic hits-oldies sibling WOGL “98.1 – Nobody Plays More 80s” responds with a +1.3 to 6.3 (fifth to a three-way tie for third, 6+). November’s increase of six-tenths curtailed three straight negative trends that accounted for a combined -1.4 (8.2 – 7.5 – 7.0 – 6.8, 6+). WOGL finished first in August 2018 and segued to second in September. The last three sweeps have been particularly interesting for Beasley Media Group’s WMMR “93.3 Everything That Rocks,” which is -.6 (December); -1.0 (“Holiday” 2018); and now +1.1 in January 2019 (6.5 – 5.9 – 4.9 – 6.0, unchanged at #6, 6+). Prior to December, WMMR had been an overall +1.1 via four straight up or flat trends (5.4 – 6.0 – 6.1 – 6.1 – 6.5, 6+). In that same vein, Entercom’s WXTU “92.5 Philadelphia’s Country Station” has recently been -.9 (October); +.6 (November); -1.1 (December); -.7 (“Holiday” 2018); and now +.9 (3.6 – 4.5, ninth to eighth, January 2019, 6+). After a September gain of four-tenths, WXTU surrendered more than twice that increase with a loss of nine-tenths. With a November – December – “Holiday” 2018 topline of 1.7 – 1.8 – 1.6 (6+), Educational Media Foundation contemporary Christian WKVP “Positive & Encouraging K-Love” logs a gain of seven-tenths to 2.3 (flat at #19, 6+). Up six-tenths (2.4 – 3.0, #16 to #13, 6+), Beasley Media Group adult hits WBEN-FM “95.7 Ben FM” has its best 6+-showing (3.0) since July 2018’s 3.4. Surfacing at #26 and #28, respectively, are Delmarva Broadcasting hot AC and country siblings WSTW “93.7 Today’s Best Variety” (.7, 6+) and WXCY “New Country 103.7” (.5, 6+).

Long Island

Spoken-Word Formats – Three decreases in succession by iHeartMedia news/talk WOR accounted for a -1.5 (3.6 – 3.1 – 2.2 – 2.1, 6+), but “710 The Voice of New York” adds three-tenths to 2.4 (#16 to #15, 6+). In September and October, WOR doubled (+1.8) its 6+ share (1.8 – 2.8 – 3.6, 6+). Down or flat the past four sweeps (1.5 – 1.4 – 1.4 – 1.3 – 1.3, 6+), Cumulus Media news/talk WABC picks up one-tenth to 1.4 (6+) yet backslides from #25 to #26. Its August increase of one-tenth 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+).

A collective -1.4 via three drops in a row (5.6 – 4.8 – 4.4 – 4.2, 6+), Entercom sports talk WFAN pulls the plug by gaining four-tenths to 4.6 (6+), progressing from #4 to a three-way tie at #2. In November, the flagship of the Giants, Brooklyn Nets, and Yankees was in a three-way tie at #1. Owing to three decreases in a row (2.2 – 2.1 – 1.9 – 1.7, 6+), similarly-programmed WEPN lost one-half share, but the key station of the New York Jets is up two-tenths to 1.9 (6+) and stays at #20. As was the case with WFAN, “98.7 ESPN New York” gained six-tenths in October.

This market’s (6+) all-news share balloons by +1.3 as Entercom’s WINS is up eight-tenths (2.8 – 3.6, #11 to #10, 6+), while co-owned/similarly-formatted WCBS-AM gains one-half share (2.9 – 3.4, #10 to #12, 6+). WINS lost four-tenths in “Holiday” 2018 and WCBS-AM was off three-tenths. The two cluster-mates were tied in December and separated by one-tenth of a share in November.

Unlisted in October and November, WNYC Broadcasting Foundation news/talk WNYC-FM resurfaced in December (2.0, #17, 6+); was off three-tenths in “Holiday” 2018 (1.7, #19, 6+); and adds four-tenths in January 2019 (2.1, #17, 6+).

Long Island Music Formats – Off eight-tenths in December and then down seven-tenths in “Holiday” 2018 (3.9 – 3.1 – 2.4, 6+), Connoisseur Media classic hits-oldies WBZO “103.1 Max FM” follows with a January 2019 +1.1 to 3.5 (#14 to #11, 6+).After three straight decreases that accounted for a -1.0 (4.2 – 4.1 – 4.0 – 3.2, 6+), co-owned adult contemporary WKJY “Long Island’s K-98.3” gains seven-tenths to 3.9 (6+) and continues at #8. Ascending by seven-tenths as well in January 2019 is Cox Media Groupowned WBAB “102.3 Long Island’s Only Classic Rock” (3.8, unchanged at #9, 6+), which had been an overall -1.9 in six straight down or flat trends (5.0 – 4.5 – 4.3 – 3.7 – 3.3 – 3.1 – 3.1, 6+). Having been down or flat the past seven sweeps for an overall decline of -1.3 (2.8 – 2.5 – 2.5 – 2.4 – 2.3 – 2.1 – 1.9 – 1.5, 6+), Emmis rhythmic CHR WQHT “Hot 97” answers with a gain of six-tenths to 2.1 (6+) and returns to the top twenty (#24 to #17). Prior to December, WQHT had been within 2.0 – 2.9 territory (6+) the previous 49 consecutive Long Island ratings periods. In six straight down or flat ratings periods, Cumulus Media country WNSH lost 50% (-1.2) of its 6+ AQH share (2.4 – 2.2 – 2.2 – 2.2 – 2.0 – 1.5 – 1.2, 6+), but “94.7 – Nash FM” is up one-half share to 1.7 (#26 to #22, 6+). Licensed to Bridgehampton (New York), LRS Radio adult contemporary WBAZ “102.5 BAZ – Refreshing & Relaxing Music” debuts with a .5 (#33, 6+). Through six consecutive sweeps without a loss, Spanish Broadcasting System Spanish tropical WSKQ “La Mega 97.9” more than doubles (+1.4) its 6+-stat (1.2 – 1.4 – 1.5 – 1.8 – 2.1 – 2.6 – 2.6, #12 to #14, 6+). A combined +6.1 in December and “Holiday” 2018 (4.4 – 6.5 – 10.5, 6+), Connoisseur Media hot AC WALK-FM “97.5 – Real Variety” surrenders a -4.5 to 6.0 (6+) but is #1 for the third straight time. “Real Variety” was off one-half share in November. More than tripling (+6.4) its 6+-stat in seven Long Island sweeps in succession without a loss (2.8 – 2.9 – 3.3 – 3.4 – 3.4 – 3.8 – 6.3 – 9.2, 6+), iHeartMedia New York City adult contemporary WLTW “106.7 Lite FM” has its 6+-share slashed exactly in half (4.6, -4.6, 6+) yet continues in the runner-up slot. In six straight down or flat trends (3.9 – 3.8 – 3.6 – 3.6 – 3.1 – 2.4 – 2.4, #14 to #15, 6+), Emmis urban AC WBLS “107.5 – #1 For R&B” is an overall -1.5.


Spoken-Word Formats – This is the fourth consecutive down or flat trend for iHeartMedia news talk KKDD “1290 News Talk IE” (.4 – .2 – .2 -.2 – .1, #21 to #24, 6+). KKDD debuted in July with a .2 (6+); gained one-tenth in August; was flat in September; and up one-tenth in October.

Co-owned KPWK “Fox Sports Radio 1350 AM” (formerly KUBE) disappeared from print in June; resurfaced in July (.2, 6+); dropped one-tenth in August; and added one-tenth in both September and October. It is without an increase for the fourth successive time (.3 – .2 – .2 – .1 – .1, flat at #24, 6+). Similarly-formatted/Los Angeles Angels-owned (LAA 1, LLC) KLAA “Angels Radio AM 830” is unlisted for the 13th straight sweep.

San Bernardino Community College news/talk KVCR erases its “Holiday” 2018 loss of two-tenths with an increase of four-tenths (1.1 – 1.5, #13 to #11, 6+). A collective -.4 in three straight losses (.6 – .4 – .3 – .2, 6+), Pasadena City College news/talk KPCC “The Voice of Southern California” is up one-tenth to .3 (#21 to #20, 6+).

Riverside Music Formats – Pulling the plug on four straight negative trends that resulted in a collective -1.7  (3.8 – 3.4 – 3.1 – 2.8 – 2.1, 6+), LC Media urban-rhythmic oldies KQIE “Old School 104.7” dials up a +.6 to 2.7 (ninth to seventh, 6+). An October loss of four-tenths halted five straight increases that netted +5.3, more than doubling its 6+-stat since April (4.6 – 6.4 – 6.5 – 6.9 – 7.4 – 9.9, 6+). Notwithstanding it is a collective +1.8 via five successive up or flat trends (2.3 – 2.3 – 2.7 – 3.2 – 3.9 – 4.1, 6+), Good News Radio contemporary Christian KSGN “89.7 – Family Friendly” slips from fourth to fifth. Setting the pace for the ninth successive sweep, Entravision’s KLYY “Jose” follows “Holiday” 2018’s -2.0 with a more modest decrease of three-tenths (8.5 – 8.2, 6+). “Jose” was +1.1 in December and +2.5 in September. December 2018’s 10.5 marked the first time any Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario station reached double-figures (6+) since April 2015, when KLYY recorded a 10.4. Up one-tenth (7.2 – 7.3, 6+), Anaheim Broadcasting classic hits-oldies KOLA is secure in the runner-up slot for the ninth time in a row. KOLA hit #1 in May 2018 with a 6.5 (6+). Flat at 1.4 (#12 to #13, 6+), Univision Radio Spanish adult hits KRCD “Recuerdo” is in one-share range (6+) for the 18th successive ratings period. Without an increase the past three sweeps for a net loss of four-tenths (2.9 – 2.9 – 2.7 – 2.5, 6+), regional Mexican sibling KSCA “Zona Mx 101.9” adds two-tenths to 2.7 (eighth to seventh, 6+). Lazer Broadcasting’s similarly-formatted KAEH “Radio Lazer” is without a loss for the sixth report in a row (.1 – .2 – .2 – .3 – .3 – .3 – .3, #17 to #20, 6+). This is the fourth straight down or flat report for iHeartMedia rhythmic CHR KGGI “99.1 Riverside’s Hottest Hit Music,” which is off seven-tenths in that timeframe (4.0 – 4.0 – 3.6 – 3.6 – 3.3, flat at #6, 6+).

San Jose

Spoken-Word Formats – Owing to four straight sweeps without an increase, Cumulus Media’s KGO is an overall -1.1 (3.0 – 2.2 – 2.2 – 2.1 – 1.9, #18 to #19, 6+). Prior to November’s -.8, KGO posted four improvements in a row for a cumulative +1.3 (1.7 – 1.9 – 2.4 – 2.8 – 3.0, 6+). Co-owned news/talk KSFO, which was a collective -.3 in December and “Holiday” 2018 (1.2 – 1.0 – .9, 6+), gains three-tenths to 1.2 (#27 to #25, 6+). Its October increase of one-tenth ended three consecutive downward moves that resulted in the disappearance of exactly half (-1.1) of its 6+-share (2.2 – 2.0 – 1.8 – 1.1, 6+).

By adding six-tenths to 3.4 (#13 to #11, 6+), sports talk cluster-mate KNBR “The Sports Leader” halts five straight down or flat moves that yielded a combined -1.6 (4.4 – 3.4 – 3.2 – 3.2 – 2.9 – 2.8, 6+). Meanwhile, Entercom sports talk KGMZ “95.7 The Game,” which was a collective +.9 in November and December, is up four-tenths (1.4 – 1.8, #25 to #21, 6+).

Over and above being a collective +1.4 in three straight up or flat moves (5.7 – 5.9 – 5.9 – 7.1, 6+), all-news sibling KCBS-AM marches from fourth to first with its best 6+-stat (7.1) since June 2018’s 7.2.

Unlisted in October and November, Northern California Public Broadcasting news/talk KQED returned in December with a 6.7 (6+); added four-tenths in “Holiday” 2018; but drops two-tenths in January 2019 (7.1 – 6.9, flat at #2, 6+). In December, San Francisco Unified School District news/talk KALW debuted with a .5 (6+). It added two-tenths to .7 in “Holiday” 2018 and is flat in January 2019 (.7, #30 to #26, 6+).

San Jose Music Formats – A collective +1.3 in November and December (2.4 – 2.9 – 3.7, 6+), iHeartMedia rhythmic CHR KYLD faltered by seven-tenths in “Holiday” 2018, but “Wild 94.9 – The Bay’s #1 Hit Music Station” bounces back with a +.9 (3.0 – 3.9, 6+) and rockets into the top ten (#12 to #7). Regaining in its entirety the eight-tenths it squandered in “Holiday” 2018 (4.6 – 3.8 – 4.6, 6+), hot AC cluster-mate KIOI “Star 101.3” progresses from seventh to fifth. Having posted a +1.2 in October and a +.7 in November, “Star” relinquished one-half share in December. A combined -1.8 in December and “Holiday” 2018 (8.0 – 6.9 – 6.2, 6+), after being an overall +1.7 in October and November (6.3 – 6.9 – 8.0, 6+), Alpha Media classic hits-oldies KBAY “94.5 Bay FM – The Bay’s Greatest Hits” is up seven-tenths (6.9, third to second, 6+). In November, “Bay FM” reached the eight-share level (6+) for the first time since “Holiday” 2016 (8.0, as well). Improving by six-tenths (each) are Empire Broadcasting’s KRTY “San Jose Hot Country 95.3” (3.3 – 3.9, tenth to seventh, 6+), which spiraled by eight-tenths in “Holiday” 2018, and Univision Radio rhythmic CHR KVVF “Hot 105.7” (2.4, 6+), which was trending 2.3 – 1.9 – 1.8 (6+). A December gain of four-tenths by KRTY curtailed three consecutive negative trends that resulted in a collective -2.4 (6.1 – 5.4 – 4.5 – 3.7, 6+). Prior to the aforementioned streak, “Hot Country” was an overall +2.1 via five successive gains (4.0 – 4.1 – 4.2 – 4.5 – 5.1 – 6.1, 6+). November’s 3.7 marked the first time KRTY was below a four-share (6+) since January’s 3.8. “Hot 105.7” catapults from #22 to #13. Via five straight down or flat trends, Cumulus Media classic rocker KSAN was an overall -1.1 (2.3 – 2.0 – 2.0 – 1.9 – 1.3 – 1.2, 6+) but “107.7 The Bone” is up one-half share to 1.7 (#26 to #22, 6+). Gaining one-half share as well is Spanish Broadcasting System regional Mexican KRZZ “93.3 La Raza” (.9 – 1.4, #24). As the result of five straight upticks (3.0 – 3.1 – 3.2 – 3.3 – 6.0 – 10.1, 6+), KOIT-FM was a cumulative +7.1 and reached #1 in “Holiday” 2018. The Entercom adult contemporary facility, however, is unlisted in San Jose’s January 2019 report. An overall +1.5 in December and “Holiday” 2018 (3.8 – 4.4 – 5.3, 6+), Univision Radio Spanish adult hits KBRG forfeits one full-share (4.3, fifth to sixth, 6+). Immediately in advance of the December sweep, “Amor 100.3” was -2.4 through three declines in succession (6.2 – 6.0 – 5.4 – 3.8, 6+). In four successive San Jose setbacks, iHeartMedia adult contemporary KISQ has lost roughly half (-2.3) its 6+-share (4.5 – 3.8 – 3.0 – 2.6 – 2.2, #14 to #15, 6+); “98.1 The Breeze” was a combined +1.0 in September and October (3.5 – 4.2 – 4.5, 6+). Similarly, Bonneville-owned KUFX “98.5 K-Fox The South Bay’s Classic Rock” sees its 6+ AQH share sliced nearly in half (-3.2) in five straight declines (6.9 – 5.9 – 4.8 – 4.3 – 3.8 – 3.7, seventh to ninth, 6+). Three increases in a row netted it a collective +1.7 (5.2 – 6.7 – 6.8 – 6.9, 6+). Before shifting to #3 in October, KUFX had been #1 for three straight months.


Spoken-Word Formats – It’s a brief (“Holiday” 2018-only) time away from #1 for Townsquare Media news/talk WKXW “New Jersey 101.5” (6.9 – 8.1, +1.2, second to first, 6+). “New Jersey 101.5” occupied the top spot for   six straight sweeps, before shifting to #2 in “Holiday” 2018 with a -1.1. When it lost three-tenths in December, WKXW had its consecutive string of increases that netted +2.3 halted at six (6.0 – 6.4 – 6.8 – 7.1 – 8.0 – 8.2 – 8.3, 6+). November 2018’s 8.3 was its best 6+-share since January 2018 (8.3, as well). Completely erasing its overall -1.0 in December and “Holiday” 2018 (3.4 – 2.8, 2.4, 6+) with a January 2019 +1.0 to 3.4 (6+), iHeartMedia news/talk WOR leaps from #17 to #12. Entering the December sweep, WOR was without a loss the previous five ratings periods and precisely doubled (+1.7) its 6+-share (1.7 – 2.0 – 2.0 – 2.3 – 3.0 – 3.4, 6+). Without an increase the past seven reports for an overall loss of roughly half (-.9) its 6+ AQH share (1.7 – 1.6 – 1.6 – 1.5 – 1.5 – 1.5 – 1.2 – .8, 6+) Cumulus Media news/talk WABC adds two-tenths to 1.0 (6+) but remains at #26.

Following three consecutive slips which accounted for a -1.0 (4.2 – 3.7 – 3.4 – 3.2, 6+), Entercom sports talk WFAN is up three-tenths to 3.5 (#13 to #11, 6+). Its October increase of seven-tenths ended four Middlesex-Somerset-Union decreases in succession that resulted in a loss of nine-tenths (4.4 – 4.3 – 4.2 – 3.6 – 3.5, 6+). Similarly-programmed WEPN “98.7 ESPN New York” has lost six-tenths in three straight reports without an increase (2.9 – 2.5 – 2.3 – 2.3, #18 to #19, 6+). The New York Jets flagship was +1.2 through five consecutive up or flat trends, (1.7 – 1.9 – 2.1 – 2.5 – 2.9 – 2.9, 6+).

Both Entercom all-news outlets show “Holiday” 2018 – January 2019 increases: WCBS-AM regains the four-tenths it lost in “Holiday” 2018 (2.3 – 1.9 – 2.3, #22 to #19, 6+), while WINS improves for the third straight time (1.4 – 1.6 – 1.7 – 1.8, #23 to #24, 6+).

Missing from print in October and November, WNYC Broadcasting Foundation’s WNYC-FM reappeared in December (2.6, #18, 6+); was down six-tenths in “Holiday” 2018 (2.0, #21, 6+); and is up one-half share in January 2019 to 2.5 (#18, 6+).

Middlesex Music Formats – Tacking on eight-tenths to “Holiday” 2018’s +.2 (5.1 – 5.3 – 6.1, 6+), Emmis urban AC WBLS “107.5 #1 For R&B” jumps from fourth to second with its best (6+) Middlesex-Somerset-Union figure (6.1) since June 2018’s 6.8. Displaying improvements of seven-tenths (each) are Pillar Of Fire contemporary Christian WAWZ “Star 99.1” (3.5 – 4.2, ninth to seventh, 6+) with its highest 6+performance (4.2) since May 2018’s 4.6, and Spanish Broadcasting System Spanish contemporary WPAT “Amor 93.1” (2.3, #20, 6+), which had been trending 2.5 – 2.0 – 1.6 (November – December – “Holiday” 2018, 6+). At the same time, up one-half share are Entercom-owned WNYL “Alt 92.3 New York’s New Alternative” (3.0, flat at #16, 6+), which had been trending 3.1 – 2.7 – 2.5 (6+), and Beasley Media Group’s WDHA “105.5 The Rock Of New Jersey” (1.3 – 1.8, #24, 6+). By improving two-tenths to 4.5 (fifth to fourth, 6+), iHeartMedia mainstream CHR WHTZ “Z-100” applies the brakes to four successive down or flat moves that accounted for a collective -1.1 (5.4 – 5.0 – 4.9 – 4.9 – 4.3, 6+). Owing to five straight Middlesex-Somerset-Union upticks (4.9 – 5.1 – 5.4 – 5.8 – 6.5 – 11.4, 6+), adult contemporary sibling WLTW was an overall +6.5. In January 2019, however, “106.7 Lite FM” plummets by -6.2 to 5.2 (first to third, 6+). On the heels of its +1.7 in “Holiday” 2018, Beasley Media Group’s similarly-formatted WMGQ “Magic 98.3 Today’s Hits/Yesterday’s Favorites” forfeits -1.3 (5.8 – 4.5, third to fourth, 6+). “Holiday” 2018’s 5.8 is the highest 6+-share for “Magic” since February 2018’s 5.9.

Monday, December 10, 2018

| December 10, 2018

Report: Cumulus Interested in WGN-AM, Chicago.  According to a report by Chicago media writer Robert FederCumulus Media – owner of news/talk WLS-AM, classic hits WLS-FM and alternative WKQX – is interested in buying legendary news/talk WGN-AM.  Television station company Nexstar has bid to acquire Tribune Media – 42 TV stations, numerous digital properties and cable channel WGN America – for $4.1 billion.  A report in Crain’s Business Chicago indicates that although Nexstar is “in no hurry” to sell WGN-AM, it is not planning to build out a  radio division and will likely sell the station.  None of the major radio operators are up against the AM ownership cap in Chicago so Cumulus, Entercom, Hubbard or iHeartMedia could be contenders to acquire the station.  Feder says that Cumulus Media president and CEO Mary Berner told staffers Cumulus would be interested in the station.

John Hanson Named Program Director for WCCO-AM, Minneapolis.  Taking over after the departure last month of station OM and PD Andy Bloom as program director for news/talk WCCO-AM is John Hanson.  He joins the station from the company’s Kansas City sports talk duo KCSP “610 Sports Radio” and KWOD “1660 The Score.”  Entercom Twin Cities SVP and market manager Shannon Knoepke says, “John brings extensive knowledge of the Minneapolis community to his new role with 830 WCCO. I trust our listeners will enjoy the innovative and exciting programing that he will add to the station.”  Prior to joining Entercom in 2013, Hanson co-hosted “Twin Cities Live” on KSTP-TV, Minneapolis.

Jeff Styles Returns to the Air in Chattanooga. Former WGOW-FM, Chattanooga morning drive personality Jeff Styles is back on the air in the market today on Brewer Broadcasting’s news/talk WPLZ-HD4/W224AZ “NoogaRadio 92.7 FM” for a daily show in the 8:00 am to 10:00 am slot.  Styles was let go from WGOW by Cumulus Media after being arrested during a road rage incident in which he was shot in the arm by the other motorist.  The case was bound over to a grand jury but the charges against him were dropped.  WGOW subsequently named midday host Brian Joyce host of “The Morning Press” with co-hosts Jim Reynolds and Kevin West.  Styles’ new program is called “Fred the Show” – Fred stands for Free Radio Every Day – and Styles says, “I’m excited to have a platform to listen, and talk to, listeners again…I’m chomping at the bit, excited to stir things up!”

Doug McIntyre to Exit KABC, Los Angeles. Longtime KABC-AM, Los Angeles personality Doug McIntyre announces he’s leaving the Cumulus Media news/talk station after his contract expires at the end of this month.  McIntyre is also a columnist for the Los Angeles Daily News.  In a Tweet, McIntyre says, “Time for me to say goodbye.  After 22 years, I will do my last show at KABC this Friday, December 14th.  What a great run and wonderful experience it has been.  This was a tough call, but I appreciate KABC management for for respecting my decision.”

Nielsen Audio: News/Talk Top Format in PPM Markets.  According to data from Nielsen Audio, overall (Persons 6+), news/talk is the most-listened-to radio format of 2018 to this point with 10% of the AQH audience. Looking at the 25-54 demographic, CHR was again the dominant format with 8% of the AQH audience.  Although news/talk’s audience skews older, it still was the third most-listened-to format (tied with adult contemporary) with 7% of the AQH audience.  Keep in mind that Nielsen lumps public radio news/talk in with its commercial brethren and that certainly adds some youth to that figure, as it likely does with the 18-34 demo, in which news/talk scores 4.3% of the AQH share.

The Bob & Tom Show Renews with iHeartMedia for 13 Affiliate Stations. The nationally syndicated “Bob & Tom” show announces it has struck a renewal deal with iHeartMedia to continue being carried by 13 of the company’s radio stations, including home base WFBQ, Indianapolis; WQMF, Louisville; WTUE, Dayton and more.  The program is distributed by Westwood One.  Show host Tom Griswold says, “Thanks to [EVP/GM iHeartMedia national programming group] Brad Hardin and all the folks at iHeart for keeping our long relationship moving forward.  Many of these stations have been with us for years, so they are jewels in the ‘Bob & Tom’ crown.  Actually, we started our syndication at WFBQ and we’re happy to continue our close and unique tie with that special group in Indianapolis.”

Kim Komando Show to Air on Bloomberg TV in January. Beginning on Saturday, January 5, the new, television version of the weekly Kim Komando program will air on the Bloomberg Television Network at 4:00 pm ET.  Komando’s show is produced by her WestStar Multimedia Entertainment firm and the TV show will be produced at WestStar’s $8 million broadcast center in Phoenix.  Komando says, “We’re thrilled to take our content to an international audience.  We’re taking what we’ve perfected on the airwaves over the last 20 years, reaching millions of Americans each week and sharing it worldwide.  How cool is that?”  The press release says that the program “will be expertly produced to speak to Bloomberg’s loyal audience of business executives, industry leaders, investors, and entrepreneurs.”  Komando adds, “We’re all about tech wellness and helping consumers use technology to enrich their lives and improve their businesses.”

TALKERS News Notes. In a report by Paul Farhi in The Washington Post, it’s revealed that NPR employs “an army of temps” that for them creates a “workplace of anxiety and insecurity.”  Farhi writes, “Without temporary workers — who are subject to termination without cause — NPR would probably be unable to be NPR.  Temps do almost every important job in NPR’s newsroom: They pitch ideas, assign stories, edit them, report and produce them.  Temps not only book the guests heard in interviews, they often write the questions the hosts ask the guests.”  Temp workers are covered under NPR’s union contract and they make a base salary as per that contract.  According to the piece, about 20%-22% of NPR’s 483 union staffers are temps…..iHeartMedia and Learfield announce that new Milwaukee sports talk outlet WRNW “97.3 The Game” will serve as the new radio home of the Wisconsin Badger Sports Network in Milwaukee.   iHeartMedia division president Jeff Tyler comments, “We have enjoyed great success with many of our new sports/talk and entertainment brands and are excited about the launch of ‘97.3 The Game’ for Milwaukee and Southwestern Wisconsin.  We are also pleased to continue and expand our longtime partnership with Learfield’s Badgers Sports Properties and the University of Wisconsin with ‘The Game,’ ‘The Big 920’ and all the other Milwaukee stations and of course our iHeartRadio brand.”…..National radio rep firm Gen Media Partners announces its acquisition of  Regional Reps and The Tacher Company.  In a press release, GMP says, “While the newly acquired companies will continue to operate on behalf of the radio stations they represent, Gen Media Partners’ combined roster of 4,000 radio station partners will create more opportunities for national advertisers, particularly when they are looking for scale in radio.”  GMP CEO Kevin Garrity says, “With the increased scale and reach, we can develop more national opportunities and generate more agency business for our independent radio partners, while we continue to provide the exceptional service and support that are our hallmark.”  Regional Reps chairman Stuart Sharpe exits while Greg Tacher and Joe Costello of The Tacher Company and Jeff Slivka of Regional Reps remain with their respective companies and take on expanded roles within the Gen Media Partners organization.

Trump-Russia Investigation, Trump Cabinet, Financial Markets Activity, Charlottesville Murder Conviction, Southeast Winter Storm, Paris Riots, Huawei CFO Arrest, and NFL Action Among Top News/Talk Stories Over the Weekend. The Robert Mueller-led investigation into possible connections between Trump campaign operatives and Russian agents; changes in the Trump cabinet as William Barr to be nominated for attorney general, Heather Nauert to be UN ambassador; and questions arise about a new chief of staff; the huge stock selloff and the activity on the world’s financial markets; James Alex Fields Jr. is convicted of murder in the death of Heather Heyer at the 2017 Charlottesville protests; a winter storm dumps heavy snow in the Southeast; France continues to deal with violent protests over economic matters; the tense U.S.-China relations after the arrest of Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou in Vancouver, BC; and the weekend’s NFL action were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio over the weekend, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

PPM Analysis: Urban Contemporary. Managing editor Mike Kinosian presents a look at the performances of radio stations based on data from Nielsen Audio’s November 2018 PPM survey, today looking at urban contemporary.  Three PPM market urban contemporary stations had improved more than a share over the November 2017 survey: Urban One’s WQOK, Raleigh “K97.5” (up 1.5); iHeartMedia’s WZRL, Indianapolis “Real 98.3” (up 1.4); and Urban One’s WERQ, Baltimore “92 Q Jams” (up 1.1). There are no urban contemporary outlets that rank #1 in their markets (6+), but WQOK, WERQ, and iHeartMedia’s WUBT, Nashville all ranked #2 in their respective markets in the November 2018 survey. See the whole report here.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. The Toledo Blade reports a major shuffle of morning show talent at the Cumulus Media cluster in Toledo.   Beginning next Monday (12/17), classic hits WRQN morning hosts Cliff and Lyn will join Gary Shores on country WKKO-FM, 99.9 “K-100.”  Denny Schaffer’s morning team moves from hot AC WQQO-FM to WRQN.   Meanwhile Eric Chase, who handles evenings on WQQO, assumes mornings on the station.  The following Monday (12/21), Jeremy “Pyke” Peterson takes over mornings on classic rock WXKR-FM as Mark Benson retires after a 22-year stint with the station…..In Seattle, Michael Kraig exits Hubbard Broadcasting’s country KNUC where he’d been handling the evening show.

Thursday, March 29, 2018

| March 29, 2018

Don Imus Says ‘Good-Bye’ to Listeners After 50 Years On-Air.  Today (3/29) was the last live “Imus in the Morning” program on WABC, New York.  Don Imus served up an emotional monologue as only he could do, then left the broadcast booth and let “best-of” Imus show segments play for the rest of the morning.  Imus was forced into an early retirement by Cumulus Media’s need to cut costs as it moves through Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization.  He said, “I know in my heart there’s been nobody ever better on the radio than me.  I mean that.  I’m telling you how it is.  Nobody ever did this.  Nobody.  But, it wasn’t me who did this.  I’m gonna miss you.  Because you were the one – and I don’t know who ‘you’ is – I always thought and still think I was always talking to one person.  I didn’t know if you were male or female, I just knew there was one person that I talked to and that would listen to me…I know you’re going to miss me, but you have no idea how much I’m gonna miss you.”

Ben Shapiro Returns to Radio with Westwood One-Distributed Daily Podcast.  Conservative media star Ben Shapiro says, “The Daily Wire and Westwood One are doing something unprecedented; we’re launching the first podcast-to-talk-radio transition ever.  And we’re doing it in five of the top 10 DMA markets in the country, which is amazing in and of itself — no show launches with this constellation of stations.  We already have an enormous digital audience and we can’t wait to extend that audience to more traditional platforms.”  Cumulus Media-owned stations WABC, New York; KABC-AM, Los Angeles; WLS-AM, Chicago; WMAL-AM/FM, Washington; WYAY-FM, Atlanta and KKAT, Salt Lake City will air the program, as well as Bonneville‘s KTTH, Seattle (where Shapiro previously hosted his own talk radio show).  WLS-AM will air the program nightly from 9:00 pm to 10:00 pm.  In New York, the show replaces the Curtis Sliwa-hosted “The Drive at Five” program at 5:00 pm ET.  WABC program director Craig Schwalb tells staff in a memo, “Curtis has held down the ‘Drive at Five’ for about two years and has done a magnificent job making that hour a strong round-up of the news of the day with the Curtis touch.  And yet, we have been given the opportunity to air one of the hottest commentators in the country in Ben Shapiro.  To say that he has hit the podcast world by storm would be an understatement.  Everyday, he is one of the top podcasters in any genre, ranking in the top 10 or top 15.  It’s for a reason.  He is brilliant, informative, and opinionated.  This podcast to broadcast is in the perfect spot between Savage and Levin.”

Curtis Sliwa to Appear at WLS-AM-Sponsored Screening of Vigilante.  Speaking of New York City icon Curtis Sliwa, he is in Chicago today for tonight’s appearance at the Chicago premiere of the Guardian Angel’s film Vigilante at the NBC Tower.  The event is taking place at the WLS-AM 890 Sound Lounge performance theatre and is being hosted by WLS-AM morning personalities Big John Howell and Ramblin’ Ray Stevens.  Sliwa will take part in a Q&A with premiere attendees.  He’s hosting his WABC, New York show from Chicago today.

WABC, New York Officially Announces Chris Plante Show for Late Mornings.  A couple of weeks ago TALKERS magazine reported that WABC, New York program director Craig Schwalb told the staff that WMAL-AM/FM, Washington-based talk host Chris Plante would be filling the 10:00 am to 12:00 noon daypart when the “Bernie & Sid Show” moves to mornings on April 2.  Now, the station makes that official, welcoming Plante to the lineup.  The press release says the New York audience knows Plante from his work covering the U.S. military and intelligence community for CNN.  Plante says his political party is “Practi-crat,” “because of my distinctly practical political leanings…As any school child knows, as a broadcaster, if you could choose one radio station in one market in the English-speaking world, it would be WABC in New York.  I’m honored to join the team.”

Cumulus Media Releases Q4 2017 and Full-Year Financial Figures; Radio Group Down 3.9%.  The company as a whole reports net revenue down 1.9% compared to the fourth quarter of 2016.  Separating the radio station group from syndicator and sales arm Westwood One, the radio station group dipped 3.9% in Q4 of 2017, while Westwood One rose 2.5%.  For all of 2017, Cumulus Media net revenue was basically flat at $1.13 billion; the radio group was down 1.9%; and Westwood One was up 2.8%.  President and CEO Mary Berner says, “Our 2017 financial performance is a true testament to our employees’ hard work and commitment to our turnaround plan.  Having also made the decision to definitively address our overleveraged balance sheet, we look forward to completing our financial restructuring and continuing our progress in the months ahead.”

Cumulus Responds to Objections to Plan of Reorganization.  After Wednesday’s filing of objections to Cumulus Media’s Plan of Reorganization by the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors and the Cross-Holder Committee, the company issued the following statement: “Today’s objections to our Plan of Reorganization by the UCC and the Cross Holders were anticipated – they are normal parts of the restructuring process and will not impact our restructuring timeline.  We look forward to emerging from the restructuring process with a stronger foundation and to continuing to execute our turnaround plan which remains on track both operationally and financially.  Both objections largely reiterate statements that have already been made through the restructuring, which we believe have no merit, and we remain confident that we will successfully address these claims through the Court process.”

PPM Analysis: Public News/Talk. TALKERS managing editor Mike Kinosian presents a look at the performances of radio stations based on data from Nielsen Audio’s February PPM survey, today focusing on public news/talk.  Comparing the January and February PPM surveys, 38% of public news/talk stations saw their 6+ AQH shares go up while 46% went down.  A year-over-year comparison indicates that 54% of stations in the survey went up (6+), with 36% losing AQH share.  During the February survey, two public news/talk stations – KQED, San Francisco and KOPB, Portland – ranked #1 in their respective markets.  KQED also was #1 in the adjacent San Jose market.  See the whole report here.

TALKERS News Notes. Boston-based New England talk show host Howie Carr just published his latest book, this one a jab at Hillary Clinton’s book of the same name, titled, What Really Happened: How Donald J. Trump Saved America from Hillary Clinton.  President Trump Tweeted praise for Carr’s book.  “@HowieCarrShow just wrote a book which everyone is talking about.  He was a great help.  He is a veteran journalist who had a great influence in NH and beyond.  He calls it the most amazing political campaign of modern times.  The book is called, ‘What Really Happened.’ Enjoy!”…..ESPN adds a new podcast from Bomani Jones to is slate of podcasts.  “The Right Time with Bomani Jones” launches on Tuesday, April 3.  New, hour-long episodes will drop each Tuesday and Thursday.  Jones says, “I’m really looking forward to rebooting ‘The Right Time’ and moving it into the future.  We want to do as much as we can with the flexibility of the podcast format to take what was a three-hour radio show and make it into an even better podcast.  I really think the audience we served before – many of whom consumed the show digitally – will be happier with what’s next and the content will attract new listeners.”…..SiriusXM is again providing comprehensive national audio coverage of the 2018 Major League Baseball season.  Subscribers can access live play-by-play of every regular season and postseason game, as well as 24/7 news, talk and analysis on the exclusive MLB Network Radio channel.

Trump-Russia Investigation, Stormy Daniels Case, Kim Jong Un in China, Stevens’ Second Amendment Repeal Suggestion, Parkland Student-Ingraham Feud, California Sanctuary Cities Controversy, ‘Roseanne’ Re-Boot,’ Sacramento Unrest, the NCAA’s Final Four, NFL Rule Changes, and NBA Action Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (3/28). The Robert Mueller-led investigation into possible connections between Trump campaign operatives and Russian agents and the suggestion by Republicans that the FBI, CIA, and the Obama Administration coordinated early in the investigation; the legal actions targeting President Trump related to the Stormy Daniels affair allegation; North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un visits Chinese President Xi Jinping; the controversy over Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens’ editorial calling for a repeal of the Second Amendment; the feud between Parkland shooting survivor David Hogg and FOX News’ Laura Ingraham; the legal battles over the California sanctuary cities policies; the success of the first episode of the “Roseanne” re-boot and Roseanne Barr’s support of President Trump; the unrest in Sacramento in the aftermath of the fatal police shooting of Stephon Clark; the NCAA Men’s tournament Final Four; free agency signings in the NFL; today’s MLB season openers; and NBA action 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 Chicago, Entercom makes changes in morning drive at CHR WBBM-FM “B96” and ousts “The J Show” with host J Niice, a.k.a. Jamar McNeil, and cast members Gabe, Shelly, and Minnie.  Meanwhile, Chicago media maven Robert Feder reports that Kevin Buchar, a.k.a. DreX, is headed back to the Windy City to assume the morning daypart there…..Beasley Media Group adult hits WBEN-FM, Philadelphia is welcoming Emmy Award-winning celebrity chef Rachael Ray as keynote speaker at the station’s 2nd annual “Her Story Luncheon” on Saturday, April 14.   The luncheon is being hosted by Kathy Romano, host of 95.7 BEN FM’s “Her Story” program.  The Saturday morning show features dynamic women who are making a significant impact in the community…..iHeartMedia’s hip hop WKTU, New York reveals the lineup for this summer’s “KTUphoria 2018” concert at Jones Beach Theater.  Performing this year will be: Dua Lipa, Ne-Yo, Charlie Puth, Enrique Iglesias, Sting & Shaggy, Pitbull and more to be announced…..Midwest Communications names Corey Schaefer brand manager for CHR KOYY, Fargo “Y94.”

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

| December 14, 2016

Cumulus Renews Rush Limbaugh Through 2019.  The news/talk icon is heard on 33 of Cumulus Media’s news/talk outlets across the country and today’s announcement insures he’ll be heard there through 2019.limbaughrush15  Premiere Networks and Cumulus Media are extending the affiliation agreement for the Rush Limbaugh show and the deal is what the latter calls a “multi-million dollar” one that “represents Limbaugh’s increased power and audience appeal as the most-listened-to national radio talk show host in America.”  Cumulus throws some ratings data into the presser as well, noting that the Limbaugh show cumulus-logo“experienced combined audience growth of +49 % with Persons 12+ and +23% with Adults 25- 54 on Cumulus-owned stations in Chicago (WLS-AM), Detroit (WJR-AM), Washington, DC (WMAL-FM), Dallas (WBAP-AM) and San Francisco (KSFO-AM).  Nationwide, the program has experienced significant year-over-year audience growth in 2016 with Persons 12+ (+21%), Adults 25-54 (+13%), Adults 18-34 (+12%) and Women 25-54 (+17%).”  All data is credited to Nielsen Audio.   Cumulus Media SVP of operations and co-head office of programming Bob Walker comments, “Rush is a unique and true broadcaster, and we’ve had a successful partnership for many years.  We’re pleased to continue offering the Rush Limbaugh show on our market-leading brands, which connect with millions of consumers and drive positive results for our partners.”

KABC, Los Angeles and Doug McIntyre Ink Two-Year Extension.  Los Angeles radio personality Doug McIntyre and Cumulus Media sign a deal that will keep him hosting the “McIntyre in the Morning” show on KABC-AM for at least two more years.  KABC operations director Drew Hayes comments, “We’re thrilled Doug will mcintyreinamlogo17be with us for at least another two years given the dramatic growth he has achieved for us over the past year.”  In the press release, Hayes says McIntyre has achieved “an impressive 61% increase in weekly listeners in the third quarter of 2016 over 2015 and 70.6% growth year-to-year in the key 25-54 demographic.  Doug has also been a hit with women listeners.”  McIntyre says, “I think we’ve found success by evolving talk radio awaymcintyredoug from stridency; by striking the right balance between today’s headlines and laughs without beating people over the head with ginned-up outrage and demoralizing partisanship.”  McIntyre also writes a popular weekly column for the Los Angeles Daily News and is a regular contributor to The Daily Beast and numerous other publications.  He is also a much-in-demand emcee, helming the annual “L.A. Political Roast,” “The Cinema Audio Society Awards,” and the annual “Timothy Coughlin Dinner” in New York, a 9-11 related charity.  Next month, McIntyre will host four evenings with comedy legend Steve Martin as part of the Southern California Distinguished Speakers Series.  In past years he has performed with Monty Python icon John Cleese, Betty White, Ron Howard and Robert Redford among others.

Joe Bell Returns to Beasley to Lead Philly Cluster.  Radio sales and management pro Joe Bell worked for Beasley Media Group for 16 years leading its Fort Myers and Miami operations. Now, almost three years afterbelljoe leaving the company, he returns to serve as market manager of the Philadelphia station group.  Beasley president Bruce Beasley states, “Joe made us proud as he served at the helm of our Miami cluster in charge of an iconic heritage sports station WQAM, in addition to his experience with major personalities at WPOW ‘Power 96,’ and Miami’s ‘Kiss Country.’  As our company has grown, we have benefitted tremendously from Joe’s successful team management skills.  Joe will hit the ground running in Philly!”  In Philadelphia, Beasley operates sports talker WPEN-FM and WTEL-AM, rock WMMR, adult hits WBEN-FM, classic rock WMGK, and talk WWDB-AM.

Cumulus Suing JP Morgan Chase for Hindering Refinancing.  In this suit, filed in U.S. District Court in the Southern District of New York, Cumulus Media is asking the court to take action forcing creditor JP Morgan Chase to follow through on steps that will allow Cumulus’ debt-for-equity refinancing to happen before the January 27 deadline.  Cumulus recently announced that it has reached an agreement with bondholders that would allow it to deleverage by as much as $305 million.  But the refinance of those senior notes requires borrowing from Cumulus’ $200 million revolving line of credit and JP Morgan has not allowed the transfer of the revolving line of credit to the new lenders and extended a loan amendment giving the company access to the credit line.  In the suit, Cumulus says it is being affected by an industry-wide decline in business and its heavy debt load is affecting its prescription for improving ratings and revenue.  This refinancing would help ease that burden.  There’s been no public comment by JP Morgan Chase on the suit.

iHeartMedia Announces Strategy in Not Repaying 2016 Legacy Notes.  Saying that as part of its “ongoing efforts to proactively address its capital structure,” iHeartMedia reports that a Special Committee of independent directors has decided not to repay the $57.1 million of the 5.50% Senior Notes due tomorrow (12/15) held by affiliate iheartmedia-logo-smallestClear Channel Holdings, Inc.  It says it will pay the $192.9 million of 2016 Legacy Notes held by other holders.  With this, iHeartMedia will continue to have at least $500 million of legacy notes outstanding on December 15 and will therefore not be obligated to grant certain additional security interests in favor of certain of its debtholders under a so-called “springing lien” set forth in relevant debt agreements.  The company announces that it also filed lawsuits in the State District Court in Bexar County, Texas, seeking a declaration that the $57.1 million of 2016 Legacy Notes remains outstanding and that the Company is not currently obligated to grant any of its debtholders the “springing lien” on any of its assets.

Baltimore Talk Personality Allan Prell Dead at 79.  Longtime WBAL, Baltimore radio personality Allan Prell passed away on Saturday (12/10) at the age of 79.  Prell worked at several stations in Baltimore but made his prellallanmark in the talk radio business hosting a show in middays on WBAL from 1982 through the early 2000s, according to Prell’s obit on WBAL.com.  Prior to his talk host career, Prell was a newsman who won two Edward R. Murrow awards for investigative journalism.  As a talk show host, Prell was named to the TALKERS magazine Heavy Hundred (The 100 Most Important Radio Talk Show Hosts in America) for three years straight (1999, 2000, and 2001).  He also co-hosted a specialty weekend program called “The Movie Show on Radio” for several years in the early 2000s.  Check out David Zurawik’s memories of Prell in the Baltimore Sun here.

David Field Sells $1.2 Million of Entercom Stock.  In a legal filing disclosed to the SEC, Entercomfielddavid Communications Corp. reports that company president and CEO David J. Field sold 79,607 shares of Entercom stock in a December 12 transaction valued at $1,268,935.58.  Field sold the shares at an average price of $15.94.  After the transaction, Field’s stock ownership stands at 2,053,161 shares valued at $32,727,386.

Odds & Sods.  Last month, programmer Bob Shomper quietly exited CBS RADIO’s Twin Cities news/talk WCCO-AM.  The company is presently searching for WCCO’s new program director…..Westwood One is now serving as the exclusive ad sales rep for the weekly podcast “The Pollsters,” featuring Democratic pollster/political consultant Margie Omero and Republican pollster/political consultant Kristen Soltis Anderson.  The program is available via audioBoom, iTunes, Google, Spotify, and others…..College basketball legend John Calipari is the host of a new, weekly podcast on the Midroll platform, owned by E.W. Scripps.  The “Cal Cast” gives Calipari “a new way for me to connect with people and to talk honestly with high profile guests who all have very interesting stories and bold opinions.”

Trump Transition/Kanye West Visits Trump Tower, Trump Cabinet Nominees, the Syrian Civil War/Allegations of Atrocities in Aleppo, New Abortion Legislation, Election Recount/Russian Influence Allegations, New Star Wars Flick, and NFL Action Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (12/13).  The transitioning of the Trump Administration and rapper Kanye West’s visit to the Trump Tower in NYC; President-Elect Donald Trump’s choices of ExxonMobil chief Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State, former Texas Governor Rick Perry as Energy Secretary, and U.S. Rep. Ryan Zinke for Secretary of the Interior; the Syrian civil war and allegations that Bashar al Assad’s forces are randomly killing civilians; the 20-week abortion limit passed in Ohio and an attempt to put restrictions on abortions in Oklahoma; the failed election recount started by Green Party candidate Jill Stein and questions about the extent of Russian influence in the recent elections; chatter about the new Rogue One installment in the Star Wars film franchise; and the week’s NFL action were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

| June 30, 2015

2015 NYC 150Talkers New York 2015 “Programming Talk Radio in 2015” Video Posted Today. One of the most important panel discussions of the Talkers New York 2015 mega-conference (held on June 12) is posted today on Talkers TV. Skillfully moderated by TALKERS VP/executive editor Kevin Casey and introduced by Radio America syndicated host Dana Loesch, the take-away-packed session includes (in alphabetical order): Carl Anderson, EVP, programming, iHeartMedia; Mike Bendixen, PD, Newstalk 1010, CFRB, Toronto; Valerie Geller, CEO, Geller Media International; Scott Masteller, PD, WBAL, Baltimore; and Mike McVay, SVP, content & programming, Cumulus Media. Subjects covered include keeping the news/talk format fresh and modern, the primacy of content, the relationship today between programming and sales, overcoming widespread negativity about the news/talk format, the benefits and pitfalls of branding, the challenge of hiring good talent, the effective utilization of social media and more. To view the video in its entirety, please click here.

hunnicuttclayHunnicutt Exits iHeartMedia to Head New Record Label.  A shocker in the radio biz as longtime iHeartMedia exec Clay Hunnicutt leaves his EVP and general manager of national programming platforms position to become president of the new record label Big Loud Records.  The move was announced to iHeartMedia staffers via a memo from national programming platforms president Tom Poleman.  He writes, “After more than 15 years here with us, Clay Hunnicutt has decided to leave iHeartMedia to become president of Big Loud Records, a record label startup. Clay has not only been a great partner to me in the day-to-day operations of national programming, he’s also become a great friend; I know you all feel the same.  He’s been a pioneer and leader in shaping the great company that we are today, and for that I’ll always be thankful.”

courtemanchejasonCumulus Media Los Angeles Courts Courtemanche as VP/Sales. Former iHeartMedia Chicago vice president of sales Jason Courtemanche relocates to Los Angeles for a similar position with Cumulus Media talker KABC-AM and classic rocker KLOS. Cumulus Media senior vice president of operations Tom Schurr comments, “I am thrilled to be working with Jason again. He is a smart, competitive, experienced broadcast executive who attracts top talent and produces results for partners and stations. We are excited to have a leader of his caliber joining the team.” Courtemanche remarks, “I am looking forward to this excitingCumulus opportunity on the west coast with these two legendary radio stations and the highly respected sales team. I am committed to getting in the trenches and helping make Cumulus the place to be in Los Angeles media.” Prior to his stint at iHeartMedia Chicago, Courtemanche was sales manager for CBS Radio Chicago all-news operation WBBM-AM; general sales manager for iHeartMedia San Diego; and director of sales for San Diego-based MVS International Communications.  In pro hockey for six years (1993 – 1999), Courtemache played for various teams in the ECHL, IHL, AHL, WCHL, and CHL.

harrisonUpCloseFarOutsmallBridging the Generational Divide – 17 Year Old Talk Radio Rising Star, Pavlina, Meets Michael Harrison on “Up Close and Far Out” Podcast.  It starts out light and chatty but quickly develops into an insightful dialogue that spans the generational divide.  Seventeen-year-old, multi-platform talk radio host Pavlina Osta is interviewed by TALKERS publisher Michael Harrison on this week’s installment of the international hit Podcast One production “Up Close and Far Out.”  “Pavlina” has been remarkably active as a self-motivated “celebrity journalist” since the tender age of 11 — racking up archives of more than 450 interviews with famous figures in show business, music, sports and public policy.  She hosts a weekly radio show called “Pavlina’s Kidz Place” heard on Florida stations WAPN, Holly Hill; WAPB, Madison; and WELE, Ormond Beach plus a number more across the Sunshine State and scattered around the country — as well as maintaining a very active website and YouTube presence. She is already a two-time Gracie Award winner and holds the Guinness world record for the most radio interviews conducted in 24 hours.  She conducted 347 interviews, each being a unique set of at least five questions. The entire 24-hour periodPavlinaMHselfie15 was broadcast live on Ustream.tv and via Live365.  Pavlina, a published author and tireless charity volunteer, has attended a number of industry conferences including the last two TALKERS events in New York City where her irrepressible personality, charisma and unique flair for fashion caught the attention of industry leaders – many of whom have begun championing her career.  She served a summer internship with Premiere Networks star Sean Hannity in 2014 and is working this summer with Salem stations (WNYM and WMCA) in New York City under the direction of Phil Boyce.  She has also received vigorous talent coaching by David Bernstein. Pavlina recently made an appearance on Newsmax TV as a guest of Steve Malzberg further fueling her rocketing profile as a media figure to be reckoned with.  Upon interviewing Pavlina for “Up Close and Far Out,” Michael Harrison states, “What this remarkable young woman lacks in polish and sophistication, she more than makes up for in sheer likability.  She oozes positive energy, remarkable charisma, unmistakable style and indelible authenticity.  Plus, and most important, just under the surface of her ‘contemporary teenage girlishness’ lies an uncommon intelligence and wisdom that are clearly fueling this young woman’s self-motivated juggernaut to stardom.  I didn’t treat her like a kid – but, rather, the amazing young woman into which she is clearly developing.  I gave her the respect of asking her tough questions. We talked about kids today – sex, drugs, peer-pressure, education, even tattoos and body piercing, plus more.”  On being interviewed by Michael Harrison, Pavlina states, “We actually covered more than I’ve ever done in an interview. This was a lot of fun.  I appreciate it.”  To hear the entire conversation between Michael Harrison and Pavlina, please click here or click on the “Up Close and Far Out” player located in the right hand column of every page on Talkers.com. (Pictured here are Michael Harrison and Pavlina in a selfie taken at Talkers New York 2015 on June 12.)

ppmunit altVoltair and PPM Controversy Getting Play in Consumer Press.  The digital publication FiveThirtyEight.com (published by ESPN) just posted a story by Carl Bialik that brings the industry’s concern about the reliability of the PPM technology used by Nielsen Audio to lightvoltair image with more of the public.  The piece uses the demise of the smooth jazz format as the primary case against the ratings technology – though it does point out that the talk and classical formats are likely adversely affected by alleged inadequacies in the PPM, as well.  Though the piece doesn’t go into detail about how Voltair works, it offers a summary of the processor’s recent history, including the moratorium on it in Canada.  The piece also poses the question: If this controversy turns the radio ratings on its head, isn’t that a potential death knell for the entire industry?  One anonymous industry executive replies, “When you’re buying on a flawed system, nobody’s winning.”  Read the entire article here.

tacinelliglenGlen Tacinelli Named 77WABC General Sales Manager.  Heading up the sales efforts at Cumulus Media-owned news/talk WABC, New York is Glen Tacinelli, who begins his role as general sales manager on July 13.   Tacinelli comes to WABC from Eastman Radio’s New York office, where he’s repped radio stations in more than 137 markets across the United States for the past seven years.  Prior to that he served at CBS RADIO’s WCBS-FM, New York.  He began his radio career at Arbitron (now Nielsen Audio).  Cumulus New York VP/market manager Chad Lopez states, “We are thrilled to welcome Glen Tacinelli as the GSM to the iconic, legendary WABC brand.  Glen’s outstanding talent, knowledge of the New York radio market and expertise in selling some of the top AM stations across the country is exactly what we were looking to add to the Cumulus New York team.”

Odds & Sods.  Taking home two awards from the Virginia Association of Broadcasting is Monticello Media’s news/talk WCHV-AM/FM, Charlottesville, Virginia.  The station was honored with the “Outstanding Newscast” and “Outstanding News Series” awards.  Program director Joe Thomas says, “Less than eight years since taking over a station with no local news content, I am so proud of news director John Peterson, his news team and our afternoon drive host Coy Barefoot and their efforts to both inform and entertain our community!”…..Delta Media Corporation welcomes Ben Love to the station’s permanent program lineup on sports talk KLWB-FM, Lafayette, Louisiana “103.7 The Game.”  Love, who hosts “Bumper to Bumper Sports with Ben Love,” is an award-winning sports media pro who recently was honored with the Best Website Feature, Best Website Column awards and finished second for Best Website Game Story by the Louisiana Sports Writers Association…..SiriusXM plans regular coverage of Pope Francis’ visit to the U.S. in September on The Catholic Channel.  SiriusXM says it will feature around-the-clock coverage each day, including live broadcasts of all of the major events during the Pope’s visit, including his appearance at the World Meeting of Families and Papal Mass in Philadelphia, his speech at the United Nations, the mass at the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, DC, and more.

masondanMason Elected BFA Co-Vice Chair, Treasurer. Recently retired CBS Radio president and chief executive officer Dan Mason is elected co-vice chair and treasurer of the Broadcasters Foundation of America. Broadcasters Foundation chair Phil Lombardo declares that, “Dan is one of the Foundation’s most ardentBroadcasters Foundation of America ambassadors and he gives tirelessly of his time. The entire board is grateful that he is taking on these additional responsibilities to advance our charitable mission of helping broadcasters in need.” As CBS Radio’s president/CEO, Mason oversaw more than 125 stations in 27 markets. The National Association of Broadcasters’ executive committee honored him as its 2012 “National Radio Award” winner for his outstanding leadership in the industry.

SCOTUS Gay Marriage and ObamaCare Rulings, 2016 Presidential Prospects, Trump-NBC Fallout, Iran Nukes Negotiations, NY Prison Escape Aftermath, Greece-EU Tensions, and ISIS Atrocities Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (6/29).  Last week’s rulings by the Supreme Court supporting federal subsidies for the Affordable Care Act and making same-sex marriage legal in all states; the potential candidates for president in 2016; Donald Trump’s skirmish with NBC over the Miss America and Miss Universe pageants; the negotiations between the West and Iran over its nuclear program; the capture of the second escapee from a New York prison and the aftermath of the ordeal; the economic tensions being created by Greece’s inability to pay its debt to the IMF and talk of its exit from the EU; and the ongoing atrocities being perpetrated by ISIS were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS.

First We Entertain: You’re Here Because of Ben Hoberman

| May 6, 2014

By Walter Sabo
Sabo Media

sabowriterNEW YORK — In the 1970s and early 80s KABC-AM, Los Angeles was the number 1 or 2
biller in America.  From its inception it was run by Ben Hoberman.

Meeting Mr. Hoberman was an event.  You made an appointment, no one just
walked in to his office.  The GM down the hall at KLOS made an
appointment.  Mr. Hoberman’s office was different than yours.  It was
crisp, immaculate and no-nonsense.  Just like Mr. Hoberman.

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