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Urban Media Corporation Radio One to Use Platforms to ‘Promote Peace’ and ‘Demand Justice.’ In a statement from Radio One, Inc., the company says it is “deeply saddened and troubled by the recent events in our country. There is no doubt, this is a critical moment in our history. From Baton Rouge, LA and Minneapolis, MN to Dallas, TX, the outcry of Black people is reverberating throughout this country. Our prayers and condolences are with the bereaved families of Alton Sterling, Philando Castile, Dallas officers Lorne Ahrens, Michael Krol, Michael Smith, Brent Thompson and Patrick Zamarripa. We pray for your peace and comfort. Though the chain of events this week is unprecedented, the sound of frustration and outrage are all too familiar. Black lives matter because ALL lives matter. Martin Luther King said, ‘The ultimate weakness of violence is that it is a descending spiral, begetting the very thing it seeks to destroy.’ The killing must stop. It doesn’t serve anyone. Certainly there is a better solution. We are not anti-police. We are anti-police misconduct, abuse and excessive force. We must protect the civil rights and lives of Black Americans and we must protect law enforcement officers who serve our communities. Both of these goals can co-exist and equally be served. Unfortunately, when these ideals aren’t aligned nor remembered, we are forced to live with the greatest loss of all – life. Acknowledging the significance of this moment, all this week, we have leveraged our multi-media platforms of local radio, TV One, Interactive One and Reach Media to encourage our community to lift their voices and be heard; promote peace in the street; and demand justice, accountability and reform in our police and justice systems. From exclusive coverage on TV One’s ‘News One Now with Roland Martin‘ to stopping the music and opening the phone lines for listener expression on our 56 urban radio stations and syndicated shows such as the ‘Tom Joyner Morning Show,’ ‘Rickey Smiley Morning Show,’ ‘Russ Parr Morning Show’ and ‘DL Hughley Show,’ we’ve served our community. We’ve produced numerous public service announcements and created empowering and informative content that spanned our national digital platforms such as NewsOne.com and HelloBeautiful.com to the millions of people we touch through our social media network. And we won’t stop here. We will do more to educate and mobilize our community. As a communications company, we are obligated to tell the stories others won’t and to amplify the voices of our hurting community. We won’t be silent.”
Cox Media Atlanta Holds Roundtable Simulcast on News/Talk WSB-AM/WSBB-FM and Urban Contemporary WALR. On Friday evening (7/8), Cox Media Group’s Atlanta news/talk WSB-AM/WSBB-FM and urban contemporary WALR “Kiss 104.1” hosted a live roundtable discussion that was simulcast on both stations about the shooting of two black males by police and killing of five police officers in Dallas after a peaceful protest there. The roundtable was hosted by WSB personality Mark Arum and panelists included radio hosts: Monica Pearson, John Pearson, Condace Pressley, Jennifer Keitt, and Herman Cain.
iHeartMedia’s 24/7 News Network Partners with NBC News. There appears to be a number of angles to this newly announced deal between iHeartMedia and NBC News. The relationship will allow affiliates of iHeartMedia’s 24/7 News Network to have access to a wide variety of audio content from NBC News products. An hourly radio newscast will be available around the clock, and the iHeartRadio platform will feature an NBC News Radio channel. 24/7 News Network SVP/GM Chris Berry says, “We couldn’t be more excited to partner with NBC News in providing our affiliates and listeners with award-winning news coverage along with the global reach of this powerful news organization. Plus, the addition of NBC News Radio on iHeartRadio showcases both our companies’ commitment to providing our consumers with the most credible news wherever they are, whenever they want it.”
Dallas Cops Slain/Weekend Cop Protests, The Presidential Race, Hillary Clinton Email Case Aftermath, and Wimbledon Tourney Among Top News/Talk Stories Over the Weekend. The majority of discussion on news/talk radio over the weekend centered on the slaying of five police officers in Dallas and the deaths of two black men at the hands of police in Baton Rouge and Minneapolis. Other topics included the presidential race, the aftermath of the FBI investigation into Hillary Clinton’s use of a private email server for State Department business, and the Wimbledon tennis tournament.
Max Kellerman Gives Up KSPN, Los Angeles Gig for Role ESPN2’s ‘First Take’ Gig. Rising to the permanent role of co-host of ESPN2’s “First Take” alongside Stephen A. Smith and Molly Qerim is Max Kellerman, who will depart his radio show with Marcellus Wiley on ESPN O&O KSPN, Los Angeles. Kellerman is also giving up his role on the Los Angeles-based “SportsNation” show on ESPN2. Kellerman says, “I’m thrilled to join the excellent team at ‘First Take.’ Years back, on-the-air and in the hallways of ESPN Radio New York, Stephen A. and I would engage in detailed and thoughtful discussions on sports and every other topic you can imagine. To do that again, now for the ‘First Take’ audience, is going to be a lot of fun.” Kellerman’s last show on KSPN is Friday (7/15).
Bram Weinstein Replaces Tony Kornheiser on WTEM, Washington. Sports media pro Bram Weinstein interned at Red Zebra Broadcasting’s WTEM, Washington “ESPN 980” while attending American University. Then he served as a show host and Redskins beat reporter from 1999 through 2008. Since then he’s been working at ESPN. Now, he returns to DC to host the 11:00 am to 1:00 pm show, replacing Tony Kornheiser. Weinstein says, “I always knew my career would bring me back to Washington. What I never envisioned was getting this particular opportunity. It’s a surreal honor. I can’t wait to get the show started.”
Nielsen Audio Releases Fourth Round of June 2016 PPM Data. The fourth of four rounds of June 2016 PPM ratings data from Nielsen Audio has been released for 12 markets including: Austin, Milwaukee, Indianapolis, Providence, Raleigh, Norfolk, Nashville, Greensboro, West Palm Beach, Jacksonville, Memphis, and Hartford. The June 2016 survey period covered May 19 to June 15. You can find the complete 6+ ratings numbers from subscribing stations here. Additionally, TALKERS/RadioInfo managing editor Mike Kinosian provides his “Twelve Takeaways” from this group on the main page of our sister publication here.
NRHOF 2016 Inductees Announced. The National Radio Hall of Fame announces the results of the voting for the class of 2016. There were 24 nominations in six categories. The first four categories below were decided by a panel of 400 industry professionals. The last two categories — Music Format On-Air Personality and Spoken Word On-Air Personality — were voted on by the public. The 2016 inductees are: Eric & Kathy (Eric Ferguson and Kathy Hart), WTMX, Chicago — Active Local/Regional, 10+ years; Jeff & Jer (Jeff Detrow and Jerry Cesak), KYKY, San Diego — Longstanding Local/Regional, 20+ years; Steve Harvey, Premiere Networks — Active Network/Syndication, 10+ years; Delilah, Premiere Networks — Longstanding Network/Syndication, 20+ years; Bob Kingsley, Westwood One — Music Format On-Air Personality; and Michael Savage, Westwood One — Spoken Word On-Air Personality. Additionally, the National Radio Hall of Fame nominating committee voted to induct four individuals for their contribution to the industry. They are: George G. Beasley, Chairman/CEO/Founder of Beasley Broadcast Group, Inc; Kidd Kraddick, the late syndicated air personality; Tony Roberts, former sportscaster and play-by-play announcer for Notre Dame Football; and Neil Rogers, the late South Florida air personality. NRHOF chairman Kraig Kitchin says, “This year’s class of inductees represents the diversity that makes radio so personal, entertaining and impactful. We all very much appreciate everyone who participated in this process as we welcome the very best in our business into the National Radio Hall of Fame.” The induction ceremony takes place at the Museum of Broadcast Communications in downtown Chicago on November 17.
KXL, Portland’s Clyde Lewis to Host Controversial Science Figure Marshall Barnes in Live Demonstration of ‘Time Machine.’ This Friday evening, “Ground Zero” host Clyde Lewis will welcome Marshall Barnes to Alpha Media Portland’s Skype Live Studio where Barnes will present two experiments before a live audience that KXL says “will have a major impact in the field of theoretical physics.” According to a press release, “the first experiment will demonstrate retrocausality, cause after effect. Done usually with single particles of light called photons, Marshall has achieved it with many photons at once from a laser and causes a portion of the beam to appear out of nowhere after the laser has been turned off. The second experiment, and most spectacular, will demonstrate the first and only time machine – the Verdrehung Fan. The Verdrehung Fan appears to open micro wormholes through which the infra-red pulses of a hand held remote control will disappear and fail to emerge out the other side to activate a TV.” Barnes – who calls himself an R&D engineer – is a controversial figure in the scientific world. Lewis says, “Marshall Barnes is the real deal – he’s been on ‘Ground Zero’ a few times and has blown away the listeners and myself with his innovative, scientific concepts and multi-dimensional perspective about the universe. I believe these upcoming experiments Marshall conducts are going to provide us with profound insights and expand our consciousness with regard to the mysterious multi-verse. Enjoy the ride!”
Odds & Sods. The independently syndicated “Joe Walsh Program” adds new affiliate stations KSEV, Houston; WXLW-AM/WFDM-FM, Indianapolis; and WYDE-FM, Birmingham. This brings Walsh’s affiliate roster to seven stations for the syndicated program. Walsh also hosts a separate show on Salem Media Group’s WIND, Chicago…..Brian Roth returns to the play-by-play role in the radio booth for Colorado State University football and men’s basketball. He’ll also serve as host for the coaches’ shows. Roth was color commentator for the past three years. Learfield’s Rams Sports Properties hold the rights to games and Townsquare Media’s KARS-FM, Fort Collins “Rock 102.9” is serving as flagship for the network…..The nationally syndicated “America’s Healthcare Advocate Show” moves to a 12:00 noon Saturday (CT) start time on KMBZ-FM, Kansas City…..On the day that the nation learned about the five police officers killed in Dallas, Radio America nationally syndicated talk host Dana Loesch thanked the Indianapolis officers who helped provide security during her stop in the market to promote her new book, Flyover Nation. She said via social media, “They put their lives on the line every day.” Loesch was visiting local affiliate WIBC-FM as part of the book tour.
Round One of October PPM Data Released. The first of four rounds of October 2014 PPM data from Nielsen Audio has been released for 12 markets including: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Dallas, Houston, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Nassau-Suffolk (Long Island), Riverside, San Jose, and Middlesex-Somerset-Union (New Jersey). The survey period was September 11 through October 8. TALKERS magazine’s sister publication RadioInfo has all of the numbers from subscribing stations here. In addition, managing editor Mike Kinosian presents his “Ten Takeaways” from this batch of ratings on the main page at RadioInfo.com here.
President Obama Using Radio to Reach Black Voters. In an effort to bring black voters to the polls on November 4 – especially in Southern states such as Georgia, North Carolina, Arkansas and Louisiana where important U.S. Senate seats are on the line – President Barack Obama has been going on talk radio shows and drive time programs hosted by black personalities. The president has appeared on such syndicated shows as Syndication One’s Rev. Al Sharpton program, “The Yolanda Adams Morning Show,” the Rickey Smiley show, and SiriusXM’s Joe Madison program. Whether the strategy works remains to be seen but TALKERS magazine’s own research indicates the radio blitz is time well spent since, on a percentage basis, blacks are strong users of radio and those who tune in to either talk shows hosted by black personalities or morning shows that tackle issues are more likely to vote in the mid-term and presidential elections.
Odds & Sods. The NBA’s Philadelphia 76ers and Greater Media’s WPEN-FM, Philadelphia “97.5 The Fanatic” ink a new multi-year extension of their contract to present 76ers play-by-play on the station. This time, the deal includes a number of unique elements designed to provide Sixers fans with news, updates and information that expands beyond the game broadcasts, pre-game show and 30-minute post-game show. The team and the station will create multi-platform shoulder programming that will include 10 one-hour Sixers shows throughout the season, a “Player Diary” feature, and a “Call of the Game” segment. Additionally, there will be an online “Get to Know the Sixers” component produced exclusively for 975thefanatic.com…..Premiere Networks’ Glenn Beck will move farther up the dial in Chicago from DuPage Radio’s WCKG at 1530 to Kovas Family Trust-owned WCGO at 1590 (licensed to Evanston). WCKG is transitioning to a more business talk intensive format and is giving up the rights to Beck’s show…..Chris Nicholas joins MacDonald Garber Broadcasting’s Traverse City, Michigan station group where he’ll serve as morning personality on adult contemporary WLXV “Mix 96.7” and program the company’s sports talker WKAD, Harrietta “93.7 The Ticket” and news/talk WATT, Cadillac.
WHO’s Simon Conway Raises Funds for Puppy Jake Foundation. That organization acquires, raises and trains service dogs for physically and mentally wounded military personnel and provides them for free. WHO, Des Moines afternoon drive host Simon Conway (pictured here with the mic) recently held a tasty fundraiser to help the cause. Conway managed to get a local supermarket to donate 200 pounds of meat, convinced a bakery to provide 800 buns and even got a champion BBQ king to do the grilling so he could hold a cookout in the WHO parking lot. In two hours he raised more than $4,000. Conway says, “The audience was incredible. We were non-stop with people driving through, picking up sandwiches and throwing heaps of cash in the donation buckets.” There were also plenty of dogs – including Conway’s own chocolate lab Reagan – on hand to enhance the “cute” factor!
Ebola Pandemic Threat, Mid-Term Elections, Sharyl Attkisson Book, Battle Against ISIS, 2016 Presidential Prospects, World Series, and NFL Action Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (10/27). The response to quarantine procedures in various states for health care workers who’ve visited West Africa and the threat of a global pandemic; the ramp-up to the mid-term elections as high-profile Democrats and President Obama hit the campaign trail; journalist Sharyl Attkisson releases a new book detailing her experiences at major news organizations trying to cover news that could be negative for the Obama Administration and Democrats; the growing concern over Western citizens joining the ISIS organization; the potential candidates for president in 2016; the Royals-Giants World Series; and the weekend’s NFL action were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS.
Michael Savage Bashes “Bash Obama” Programming Philosophy. Cumulus Media Networks nationally syndicated talk host Michael Savage appeared on WABC, New York’s “Aaron Klein Investigative Radio” program last night and told Klein’s audience that talk radio conservatives are “committing suicide” by incessantly criticizing Barack Obama. Savage, who recently left longtime syndicator Talk Radio Network and subsequently signed on with Cumulus Media Networks, said, “Many people on the conservative side of the dial are making the same mistakes now that the liberals made when Bush was in power. “Air America went bankrupt, why? Because all they did was…Bush bashing and they were just crazy in the Bush bashing. Boring. Boring. How much could you listen to? It wasn’t even clever Bush bashing. This is what’s going on now with the conservatives. They’re committing suicide. Just attacking Obama – although he deserves it – is not good radio…Remember one thing, radio is primarily an entertainment medium. It was not created to be the voice of the Republican Party or the Democrat Party.” Savage’s program begins airing on Cumulus O&O WABC tonight from 9:00 pm to 11:00 pm.
CBS Radio Dallas Offices Hit by Gunfire. The offices of CBS Radio’s Dallas operations that house its radio stations was hit by gun shots on Friday and police are still investigating the source of the bullets. CBS Dallas is reporting the shots hit the outside panes of glass on two floors of the 12-story building that abuts the busy Central Expressway. One of the offices hit was that of NewsRadio 1080 KRLD’s promotions director Matt Stacks. The other window hit was above the KRLD offices belonging to former police officer and practicing attorney Pete Schulte who tells CBS, “It sounded like a rifle. It was clearly a loud bang, and as soon as I heard the loud bang the glass shattered in my office.” Schulte says he was frustrated by how long it took the police to take action. “I should think police should at least canvass the area to see if they can find anyone with a long gun.” The CBS story notes police did canvass the area a little over an hour later and that Schulte was told the call had been mis-categorized as a criminal mischief call instead of an active shooter case. The building also houses CBS Radio’s other Dallas stations including sports talk KRLD-FM “105.3 The Fan,” AC KVIL “103.7 Lite FM,” adult hits KJKK “100.3 Jack FM,” classic hits KLUV, and Spanish WMKV, “Mega 107.5 FM.”
WLS, Chicago Adds Early-Morning Newscast. Time Out Chicago’s Robert Feder tips that Cumulus Media-owned news/talk WLS, Chicago began a 4:30 am newscast anchored by John Dempsey this morning (12/3). The move means WLS is cutting the second half of The Wall Street Journal Radio Network’s “This Morning” program that aired from 4:00 am to 5:00 am. “The 89 WLS First Morning News at 4:30” also uses ABC Radio News London-based correspondent Tom Rivers as a contributor.
Radio One to Consolidate Syndication One Division with Reach Media in January. Radio One will increase its ownership stake in Reach Media from 53% to 80%. The consolidation of Radio One-owned Syndication One and the Tom Joyner– and David Kantor-founded Reach Media will, according to Radio One, create an “assembly of top talent, programming and prime national advertising inventory that make Reach Media the leading radio network with the ability to speak directly to the African-American audience. In 2013, Reach Media will use its strong affiliate lineup and relationships with leading urban stations to also launch a new network. Reach Media’s new network is expected to be in the top tier of radio networks and have one of the largest African-American audiences of any radio network. Reach Media will expand its dedicated sales and marketing staff to sell the radio network advertising inventory along with web and event sponsorships.” The company will offer talk and music radio talent including: Tom Joyner, Rickey Smiley, Russ Parr, Yolanda Adams, Reverend Al Sharpton, Warren Ballentine and CoCo Brother. It indicates it has plans to acquire more urban-targeted talent in the near future. Radio One CEO Alfred Liggins says, “Radio One has a commitment to be the leader in radio and online programming with compelling entertainment and information for the African-American audience. Combining our assets under Reach Media offers an incredibly broad platform for affiliate stations and advertisers to connect with our loyal audience.” Reach Media CEO David Kantor states, “In bringing together the most compelling urban programming in radio, we’ve created a platform that can focus on outstanding talent for our affiliates and the delivery of an incredibly responsive consumer base. We look forward to expanding our offerings and becoming the primary radio network for advertisers to reach African- Americans.”
Pat Miller Returns to PM Drive on WOWO, Fort Wayne. Longtime WOWO, Fort Wayne talk show host Pat Miller re-joins the station for the afternoon drive slot beginning in January. Miller exited his full-time role at the station last spring but continued to do a two-hour weekend program. After Gregg Henson exited the program director and PM drive posts at WOWO at the end of the summer Federated Media plugged in Premiere Networks’ Sean Hannity. But Hannity has been moved to the 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm slot with Casey Hendrickson filling in on the PM drive show. Hendrickson also hosts the morning drive show at Federated’s WTRC-AM/FM, South Bend, Indiana “Michiana’s News Channel.”
Dave Ramsey Moves to Daytime in Atlanta on WCFO. Nationally syndicated financial talk star Dave Ramsey’s program is moving to new affiliate JW Broadcasting’s WCFO, Atlanta beginning today where he’ll air live in the 2:00 pm to 5:00 pm time slot. Ramsey’s program most recently was heard in the 10:00 pm to 1:00 am slot on Cox Media’s WSB-AM and WSBB-FM. Prior to being picked up by WSB in 2011, Ramsey aired in afternoons on Clear Channel’s WGST. Brian Mayfield, vice president of broadcast for The Lampo Group, says, “We are very excited that Dave can now be heard live in Atlanta. Our audience has been asking for this, and we are proud to partner with WCFO to deliver on this request.”
Five Practical Digital Lessons Radio Can Learn from the Obama Campaign. Noted radio digital consultant Chris Miller says broadcasters should look to the recent Obama Campaign’s effective use of digital media for promotional and branding initiatives. In this piece, he illustrates how 1) all the various platforms we use today are inter-connected and must be treated as such; 2) every platform has a specific purpose and should be used to achieve clearly defined goals; 3) remember that it is all a “show” and just because it is digital or “social media” doesn’t mean it isn’t show biz; 4) make sure your emails are likely to be opened by labeling them with irresistible subject lines; and 5) create “community,” not just “conversation.” Read Miller’s entire piece here.
Jason Pugh Exits WEFL, West Palm Beach for DC TV Gig. Jason Pugh is leaving his positions at Good Karma’s “ESPN 760” WEFL, Tequesta, Florida where he partnered with Jeremy Marks-Peltz for the 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm show and his sportscasting gig at WPTV-TV for a position at NBC O&O WRC-TV, Washington, DC. Pugh also worked in the play-by-play booth for Florida Atlantic University football games. The Florida Sun-Sentinel reports Pugh joined Good Karma in 2006 and began hosting his own program in 2009.
ESPN New York O&Os Re-Up with NFL’s Jets. The New York City ESPN O&O stations – WEPN-FM “ESPN New York 98.7” and WEPN-AM “ESPN Deportes New York 1050” announce they have extended their contract to be the exclusive New York radio partners of the NFL’s New York Jets. Included in the deal are three ancillary programs — the “Jets Player Spotlight” (Mondays at 3:30 pm) a weekly interview with Jets head coach Rex Ryan (Mondays at 5:15 pm) and “Inside the Jets” (Mondays at 7:00 pm). ESPN New York vice president and general manager Dave Roberts states, “We’re excited to continue our relationship with the Jets. The Jets have a huge fan base in the New York metropolitan area and we look forward to continuing to serve them.”
XtreMedia Talk Hosts DoGood.com Charts Giving Success. XtreMedia talk show hosts Dani Johnson, Kevin McCullough and Stephen Baldwin began a campaign in April of this year to assist 2,012 orphans with a stated goal of raising $185,000. After achieving the goal in just eight weeks instead of the eight months they had given themselves, they set about creating DoGood.com and partnered with Kings Ransom Foundation to assist orphaned children and others in need. Some examples of their success include: In November, Dani Johnson again publicly challenged her listeners to radically help with practical help for victims of hurricane Sandy. In one weekend’s broadcast the Dani Johnson web and radio community (some of whom were directly impacted by the storm) and working with Kings Ransom Foundation raised in excess of $35,000 to aid specific cases whose stories were of particularly tough loss. Over the course of five weeks after Sandy, Kevin McCullough was able to rally listeners to his national daily show to provide aid by connecting volunteers to engineering and contracting, clean-up crews, and miscellaneous needs in excess of $25,000 towards help for churches, communities, pastors, and parishioners in hard hit communities in Brooklyn, Queens, The RockAways, and down the Jersey shore. On December 12, Stephen Baldwin is scheduled to headline a fundraising gathering being hosted by VH1 with proceeds to be donated to hurricane Sandy relief efforts via DoGood.com. On December 1, the clients and listeners in attendance at Dani Johnson’s “Creating a Dynasty” leadership training weekend raised an additional $113,000 (by auctioning off slices of cheesecake freshly prepared by Dani personally) for the King’s Children’s Home orphanage in Belize that is in need of a new roof for four buildings on its campus. The total cost for the roofing project will run $200k for all four structures.