Tag: "Scott Kaplan"

Monday, August 19, 2019

| August 19, 2019

Monday Memo: Your Donald Trump Elevator Speech?  In these dog days of summer when everyone seems to be on vacation, phones can be slow.  In this week’s column, consultant Holland Cooke invites you to rip off a call-in topic that he says has never failed.  See it here.

TALKERS News Notes. San Diego sports talk personality Scott Kaplan tells KUSI-TV, San Diego personality Paul Rudy that his recent negotiations with the owners of Mexican radio station XEPRS-AM, Rosarito to return the sports talk format – “The Mighty 1090” – back to the station has failed, at least for now.  Kaplan, co-host of the “Scott and BR” program, says after a lot of number-crunching discussions, his attempt to lead a new company that could operate the sports talk radio station isn’t being realized because the numbers show it to be an uphill battle from a financial standpoint.  As you recall, Broadcast Company of the Americas lost its lease of the signal after it was unable to keep up the payments to the Mexican owners. Still, Kaplan says his sports talk show continues to be available on digital platforms, including TuneIn and YouTube…..WEEI, Boston staffer Alex Reimer announces he’s exiting the Entercom-owned sports media outlet after a three-year stint to become the director of communications for Massachusetts State Senator Eric Lesser.  Reimer has been a featured personality on the station’s radio programs as well as a writer for WEEI.com…..Entercom’s Washington, DC station group is celebrating National Radio Day tomorrow (8/20) with live broadcasts from its District Live studios at 1015 Half Street in Southeast Washington, DC.  Four radio programs will be broadcast live for listeners to watch, including the afternoon drive Chad Dukes program – heard on sports talk WJFK-FM – from 2:00 pm to 6:30 pm…..ADX Communications is adding WEBY-AM and translator W256DL at 99.1 FM to the multicast of its sports talk “ESPN Pensacola.”  The station emanates from WYCT-HD2 and is also being added to the company’s WYCT-HD4.  The station is heard on translator W233CM at 94.5 FM but that will cease after September…..Talk show host Jeremy Hanson is exiting the libertarian-themed digital platform MOJO 5-0.  He tells TALKERS magazine he’s had a good relationship with operator Ron Phillips but that his show as “outgrown the platform.” His program remains available via Spreaker.com and his website www.ujhlive.com.

Entercom Launches RADIO.com Sports Digital Network. The new digital, subscription-free sports platform from Entercom debuts today (8/19) with live programming and podcast content.  RADIO.COM Sports Digital Network includes daily live shows such as “Home & Home with Ross Tucker and Dave Briggs” (8:00 am to 11:00 am ET), “Swings & Mrs.” with Cody and Jennifer Decker(1:00 pm to 4:00 pm ET); and “You Better You Bet” with Nick Kostos (6:00 pm to 10:00 pm ET).  It also makes available new podcasts including, “Prevent Defense” and “Love @ First Fight.”  The programming is available in both audio and video.

Salem Media Group to Sell 20 Signals to Relevant Radio for $17 Million. This deal delivers 20 radio signals – a mix of stations and translators – from Salem Media Group to Christian operator Relevant Radio for $16.95 million.  The signals are located in 10 markets across the country.  They include: WAFS-AM, Atlanta; WWDJ-AM, Boston; KTNO-AM, Dallas; KTEK-AM, Houston; KRDY-AM, San Antonio; WSDZ-AM, St. Louis; KXFN-AM, St. Louis; and WHKZ-AM, Youngstown.  This deal comes after Salem CEO Ed Atsinger’s recent statement that the company would seek to sell assets if the moves aligned with the company’s long-term strategy.

Michael Harrison: The Notion of “Mass Appeal” Was a Temporary 20th Century Construct!   TALKERS founder Michael Harrison was a guest on Holland Cooke’s “The Big Picture” television program this past Friday evening (8/16) on RT America to discuss the subject of Woodstock’s 50th anniversary.  Legendary radio programmer Jay Clark (SiriusXM Satellite Radio, WABC, etc.) was a guest panelist as well.  Cooke asked Harrison if he thought that popular music would ever be able to return to mass appeal status via radio as it did back in the day of the 1969 iconic festival.  Harrison replied, “‘Mass appeal’ is a term we really have to do some thinking about in this modern world of the 21st century digital era.  Maybe ‘mass appeal’ was just a temporary construct of the 20th century because I don’t think there was such a thing before electronic media.  The country and world were very fractionalized in the 19th century and certainly earlier than that.  Maybe these notions of the ‘general public’ and the ‘mass media’ were a temporary juncture in the evolution of media and society from the 19th century when it took forever for everybody to be on the same page because it wasn’t instantaneous by far and now when everybody has their own page.  I don’t know if that’s the natural way of homo sapiens communication.  We are going through a major transition in which the human nervous system is being rewired by the way we communicate in the digital era.”  To view the entire segment please click here.

SRN Presents Christian Films Series. Pictured above is Salem Radio Network v.p./News & Talk Programming Tom Tradup (left) with Christian filmmaker Alex Kendrick (right) during a break while recording the network’s week-long special series on Christian films.  Kendrick directed and stars in the newest Sony/Affirm Films production Overcomer that opens nationwide this Friday.  Others profiled by SRN include Cameron Arnett, the “Star Trek: The Next Generation” and “Miami Vice” star who has devoted his career to sharing Christianity with others.

Epstein Suicide Ruling, U.S.-China Trade War, 2020 Presidential Race, Peaceful Hong Kong Protest, Portland Antifa-Proud Boys Clash, Kabul Wedding Massacre, Russian Nuke Weapon Test, and Woodstock Anniversary Among Top News/Talk Stories Over the Weekend. The official ruling that the prison death of accused sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein was a suicide; the economic effects of the trade war between the U.S. and China; the Democrats hoping to challenge President Trump in 2020; the peaceful protest in Hong Kong; the violent clash between members of the Proud Boys and Antifa during a march in Portland; the Islamic State-credited bombing of a wedding in Kabul, Afghanistan that killed more than 60; the explosion that rocked a Russian missile test and killed five scientists; and the 50th anniversary of the Woodstock festival were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio over the weekend.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. On-air pro Dave O’Brien is the new morning show host at Entercom’s classic rock KQMT, Denver “99.5 The Mountain,” effective August 27.  He was most recently morning host at Emmis Communications’ country WLHK, Indianapolis.  He says, “I’m very excited to join the talented team at Entercom Denver and can’t wait to start rocking Denver awake every morning on ‘99.5 The Mountain.’  I’m eager to embrace the Colorado lifestyle and I’m more than ready to return to my classic rock roots.”…..Programming pro Brad Austin exits his role with Forever Media as corporate director of programming.  He also had been serving as program director and afternoon drive host for the company’s country WXCY, Havre de Grace, Maryland.  Austin had been serving in a similar capacity with Delmarva Broadcasting prior to its being acquired by Forever Media…..iHeartMedia hip hop WWPR, New York “Power 105.1” announces the lineup for its annual live music event, “Powerhouse,” presented by AT&T and produced by Live Nation taking place on October 26 at Prudential Center in Newark.  Performers will include: Migos, Meek Mill, Lil Baby, A Boogie wit da Hoodie, Da Baby, DavidoMegan thee Stallion, Saweetie, Polo G, Lil Tjay, with more to be announced.

Nielsen Audio’s July 2019 PPM Data. July 2019 ratings information has been released for Kansas City, Columbus, San Jose, Raleigh, Indianapolis, Milwaukee, Middlesex, Nashville, Providence, Norfolk, Jacksonville, and West Palm Beach. Nielsen Audio’s July 2019 survey period covered June 20 – July 17. Managing editor Mike Kinosian (Kinosian@Talkers.com) provides his “Takeaways” from these 12 PPM-markets.

Kansas City

Spoken-Word Formats – Ups/downs continue for Entercom news/talk KMBZ-FM “98.1 News-Traffic-Weather,” which was -.8 in March/April  (5.6 – 5.4 – 4.8, 6+); +.7 May/June (4.8 – 5.2 – 5.5, 6+); and now -.6 in July (5.5 – 4.9, flat at #4, 6+). The February 2019 through July 2019 topline for co-owned KMBZ-AM “Talk 980” is much more consistent: 2.2 – 2.0 – 2.3 – 2.1 – 2.3 – 2.2 (#19 to #20, 6+). Off two-tenths through three straight down or flat trends (1.4 – 1.4 – 1.3 – 1.2, 6+) before picking up one-tenth to 1.3 (6+) in June, Cumulus Media’s KCMO-AM “Talk Radio 710 AM” coughs up two-tenths to 1.1 (6+) and is anchored at #22.

A June increase of two-tenths by Union Broadcasting’s WHB suspended four straight negative or flat trends that led to a -2.0 (5.0 – 3.8 – 3.8 – 3.1 – 3.0, 6+). “Sports Radio 810” is off four-tenths in July to 2.8 (6+) and repeats at #15. A combined -1.5 in June/July (4.0 – 3.9 – 3.3 – 2.5, 6+), Entercom’s KCSP slumps from #14 to #18; “610 Sports Radio” was +1.7 in March/April (2.3 – 2.8 – 4.0, 6+).

Answering June’s loss of eight-tenths with a July increase of two-tenths (4.1 – 4.3, 6+), University of Missouri news/talk KCUR jumps from ninth to seventh.

Kansas City Music Formats – Not only is Cumulus Media-owned KCFX +2.6 in four upticks in succession (7.3 – 7.7 – 8.4 – 8.6 – 9.9, 6+), “101 The Fox – Kansas City’s Classic Rock Station” advances from second to first. This (9.9) is the highest 6+ showing for KCFX since January 2019’s 10.1. Albeit +3.8 via six successive sweeps without a loss (5.4 – 6.6 – 7.7 – 7.9 – 7.9 – 9.2 – 9.2, 6+), classic hits-oldies sibling KCMO-FM “94.9 Kansas City’s Greatest Hits” backslides from first to second. Five recent KCMO-FM fluctuations include +1.6 (“Holiday” 2018); -1.3 (January 2019); +1.2 (February); +1.1 (March); and +1.3 (June). In the seven survey periods in calendar year 2019, KCFX has been on top four times (January, February, May, and July), while cluster-mate KCMO-FM has been at #1 the other three (March, April, and June). By gaining one-half share to 2.6 (#20 to #16, 6+), Entercom alternative KRBZ “96.5 The Buzz” erases the -.5 it lost in three straight decreases (2.6 – 2.4 – 2.2 – 2.1, 6+). Improving by one-half share in July as well is Carter Broadcast Group’s KPRT “Gospel 1590,” which doubles June’s .5 to 1.0 (#23, 6+). An increase of three-tenths to 3.1 (#16 to #13, 6+) by Cumulus Media-owned urban AC KMJK “Magic 107.3” halts three drops in succession that resulted in a -1.2 (4.0 – 3.9 – 3.0 – 2.8, 6+). A combined +1.5 in May/June (3.3 – 3.9 – 4.8, 6+), Entercom hot AC KZPT “99.7 The Point” forfeits roughly half that increase (4.1, -.7, fifth to eighth, 6+). In June, “The Point” crossed the four-share threshold (4.8) for the first time since September 2018’s 4.3. In five consecutive reports without a loss, University of Northwestern St. Paul contemporary Christian KJNW was an overall +2.0 (1.5 – 1.9 – 2.0 – 3.0 – 3.0 – 3.5, 6+), but “Life 88.5” relinquishes 30% of that gain (2.9, -.6, #12 to #14, 6+). In June, KJNW had its strongest (6+) performance since January 2018 (3.5, as well). Steel City Media’s KFKF “Country 94.1” is trending 4.5 – 4.8 – 4.8 – 4.5 (April – May – June – July, fifth to sixth, 6+), while co-owned KBEQ “Q-104 New Hit Country” is -1.8 in three drops in a row (5.9 – 5.3 – 4.2 – 4.1, flat at #8, 6+). July’s 4.1 is the weakest 6+-stat for “Q-104 since December 2018’s 3.7. The market’s other country FM, Entercom’s WDAF “106.5 The Wolf,” gains an overall seven-tenths in its third successive up or flat trend (3.0 – 3.5 – 3.5 – 3.7, 6+) and returns to the top ten (#12 to #10).

Columbus

Spoken-Word Formats – After being an overall -2.3 via five consecutive negative or neutral trends (7.0 – 5.9 – 5.5 – 5.0 – 5.0 – 4.7, 6+), iHeartMedia news/talk WTVN “News Radio 610” breaks out a +.6 to 5.3 (6+) and remains in sixth-place.

Since reappearing in print several months ago, RadiOhio sports talk outlet WBNS-FM was 4.7 (April, 6+); down one-tenth to 4.6 (May, 6+); and off seven-tenths in June to 3.9 (#9, 6+). In July, “Sports Radio 97.1 The Fan” is once again unlisted.

The ultra-consistent January 2019 through July 2019 topline for Ohio State University news/talk WOSU is: 4.5 – 4.7 – 4.5 – 4.7 – 4.6 – 4.8 – 4.5 (fifth to seventh, 6+).

Columbus Music Formats – Replacing June’s -.5 with a July increase twice that magnitude (4.6 – 5.6, +1.0, 6+), iHeartMedia adult hits WODC “93.3 The Bus” drives from seventh to fifth. Prior to the June sweep, WODC notched three consecutive up or flat sweeps that netted a +1.0 (4.1 – 4.2 – 4.2 – 5.1, 6+). This (5.6) is its best 6+-stat since 8.7 in “Holiday” 2018. Owing to three straight declines, co-owned WCOL is an overall -2.2 (13.0 -11.7 – 11.1 – 10.8, 6+); however, “92.3 Columbus’ #1 For New Country” is #1 the 20th sweep in a row and has been in double-digits (6+) each ratings period since June 2017. Sample WCOL fluctuations include 1.5 (November 2018); -2.1 (“Holiday” 2018); +.8 (January 2019); +.7 (February); +1.2 (April); -1.3 (May); and -.6 (June). Not only does Saga Communications classic hits-oldies WNND extend its consecutive string of upticks to four for a collective +1.2 (2.2 – 2.3 – 2.5 – 3.0 – 3.4, 6+), “Rewind” enters the top ten (#11 to #10). In June, WNND reached the three-share level (6+) for the first time since December 2017’s 3.1. When “Rewind” cluster-mate WLVQ gained three-tenths this time last month, it stopped an April/May slide that resulted in a combined -1.4 (8.7 – 8.4 – 7.3, 6+). In July, “Iconic Rock Q-FM 96” erodes by -1.3 (7.6 – 6.3, 6+) and slips from second to fourth. In three straight “Holiday” 2018 through March 2019 increases, WLVQ netted a +1.9 (6.8 – 7.2 – 8.1 – 8.7, 6+). For the third time in the last six survey periods, hot AC cluster-mate WVMX “Mix 107.9” logs a 2.5 (2.5 – 2.5 – 2.9 – 2.6 – 3.0 – 2.5, #11 to #13, 6+). June’s 3.0 was the highest 6+-stat for “Mix” since October 2018 (3.2). Immediately following May’s +1.4, iHeartMedia-owned CHR WNCI “97.9 Columbus’ Hit Music Station” is a combined -1.5 in June/July (8.6 – 7.4 – 7.1, 6+) yet actually advances from third to second. May’s 8.6 was its strongest 6+-performance since September 2018’s 9.4. Prior to May, WNCI was a collective –1.1 through three successive decreases (8.3 – 8.0 – 7.7 – 7.2, 6+). Nine consecutive sweeps without a loss by Ohio State University’s WOSA resulted in more than doubling (+.7) its 6+ AQH share (.5 – .9 – .9 – .9 – 1.0 – 1.0 – 1.0 – 1.1 – 1.1 – 1.2, 6+), but WOSA forfeits one-tenth in July to 1.1 (#17 to #16, 6+).

San Jose

Spoken-Word Formats – The last time Cumulus Media news/talk KGO logged an increase was October 2018 (2.8 – 3.0, +.2, #15 to #13, 6+). Since then, KGO has lost more than 50% of its 6+ AQH share (-1.6) in ten straight San Jose sweeps without an increase (3.0 – 2.2 – 2.2 – 2.1 – 1.9 – 1.9 – 1.9 – 1.9 – 1.7 – 1.5 – 1.4, #21 to #23, 6+). Likewise, co-owned news/talk KSFO has lost roughly half (-.7) its 6+-stat in three successive setbacks (1.5 – 1.3 – 1.2 – .8, #23 to #27, 6+) and falls below a one-share (.8, 6+) for the first time since “Holiday” 2018 (.9).

Sports talk cluster-mate/Giants flagship KNBR “The Sports Leader” erases June’s half-share loss and posts a 4.2 (+.5, 6+) for the third time in the last four reports (4.2 – 4.2 – 3.7 – 4.2, eighth to seventh, 6+). KNBR was +1.1 in April. Entercom sports talk KGMZ “95.7 The Game,” which lost one-half share in June as well, regresses by another eight-tenths (2.9 – 2.4 – 1.6, 6+) and fades from the top twenty (#15 to #21). In three consecutive positive spikes (1.5 – 1.7 – 1.9 – 2.9, 6+), “The Game” nearly doubled (+1.4) its 6+-stat.

Returning in full June’s increase of four-tenths, all-news sibling KCBS-AM drops from fourth to fifth. KCBS-AM was -1.9 in three straight March through May decreases and has an April 2019 through July 2019 topline of 5.6 – 5.2 – 5.6 – 5.2 (6+).

Three straight dips by KQED accounted for a collective -1.1 (7.1 – 6.9 – 6.1 – 6.0, 6+) but the Northern California Public Broadcasting news/talk facility picks up three-tenths in July to 6.3 (6+) and carries on in third-place. In June, KQED slipped from second to third, after an April-only stay at #1. Stuck on .9 (6+) in March and April and then on .7 (6) in May and June, San Francisco Unified School District news/talk KALW erupts with a +.6 to 1.3 (#27 to #24, 6+).

San Jose Music Formats – An overall -1.1 in three successive declines (6.1 – 6.0 – 5.3 – 5.0, 6+), Univision Radio Spanish adult hits KBRG “Amor 100.3” recaptures all but two-tenths of that shortfall with a +.9 to 5.9 (sixth to fourth, 6+). Somewhat similarly, in five consecutive sweeps without a gain (4.6 – 3.8 – 3.6 – 3.5 – 3.5 – 3.2, 6+), iHeartMedia hot AC KIOI was a collective -1.4 but “Star 101.3” erases half that deficit with a +.7 to 3.9 (ninth to eighth, 6+). “Star” was -.8 (4.6 – 3.8, “Holiday” 2018, 6+); +.8 (3.8 – 4.6, January 2019, 6+); and -.8 (4.6 – 3.8, February, 6+). On top the third month in succession, Alpha Media classic hits-oldies KBAY “94.5 Bay FM – The Bay’s Greatest Hits” has a March 2019 through July topline of 7.7 – 6.2 – 7.5 – 7.7 – 7.3 (6+). “Bay FM” answered April’s -1.5 with a +1.3 in May (6.2 – 7.5, 6+) as KBAY returned to #1 after an April-only stay at #2. Prior to the April sweep, “Bay FM” had been +1.5 via three bumps in a row (6.2 – 6.9 – 7.3 – 7.7, 6+). In back-to-back sweeps, iHeartMedia rhythmic CHR KYLD “Wild 94.9” is a combined -1.1 (3.4 – 3.0 – 2.3, 6+) and departs the top ten (#10 to #13). “Wild” falls below a three-share (2.3, 6+) for the first time since November 2018 (2.9). Faltering by one-half share each are Entercom alternative KITS “Alt 105.3” (2.3, #12 to #13, 6+); iHeartMedia urban contemporary KMEL “106.1 #1 For Hip-Hop and R&B” (2.2, #13 to #15, 6+); and Educational Media Foundation contemporary Christian KJLV “Positive & Encouraging K-Love” (.1, #28 – #31). Both KITS (2.3 – 2.4 – 2.8, 6+) and KMEL (2.2 – 2.3 – 2.7, 6+) were a combined +.5 in May/June. “K-Love” popped on with a .6 (6+) in June. This is the seventh month in a row that KOIT-FM is unlisted in San Jose. As the result of five straight increases (3.0 – 3.1 – 3.2 – 3.3 – 6.0 – 10.1, 6+), “Today’s Hits & Yesterday’s Favorites”  was a cumulative +7.1 and reached #1 in “Holiday” 2018. The Bonneville adult contemporary outlet remains in print in the San Francisco report.

Raleigh

Spoken-Word Formats – While it remains in ninth-place, iHeartMedia news/talk WTKK “106.1 Stay Connected” is an overall -1.8 in four straight downturns (6.5 – 6.1 – 5.8 – 5.3 – 4.7, 6+), basically neutralizing three successive up or flat trends that netted a +1.9 (4.6 – 6.1 – 6.5 – 6.5, 6+). This is the 20th time in a row Curtis Media Group news/talk WPTF “News Radio 680” (1.9 – 1.8, -.1, unchanged at #16, 6+) has recorded a 6+ AQH share between 1.0 – 1.9; June marked the first time it reached 1.9 in that timeframe.

For the fourth successive month, Capitol Broadcasting sports talk WCMC “99.9 The Fan” posts a 2.2 (6+) and finishes at #15. Co-owned/similarly-formatted model of consistency WDNC “620 The Ticket” has an August 2018 through July 2019 topline of: .1 – .1 – .1 – .1 – .1 – .1 – .1 – .1 – .2 – .2 – .1 – .1 – .2 (#26 to #24, 6+).

Repeating in the runner-up slot, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill news/talk WUNC  follows June’s gain of eight-tenths with a loss of three-tenths (7.8 – 7.5, 6+); “91.5 North Carolina Public Radio” was +1.0 in January and -.6 in February.

Raleigh Music Formats – In addition to jumping from fifth to third by gaining two-tenths to 6.7 (6+), Capitol Broadcasting adult contemporary WRAL “Mix 101.5 – The Variety That Makes You Feel Good” pulls the plug on four successive sweeps without a gain that resulted in a -2.1 (8.6 – 7.7 – 7.7 – 7.5 – 6.5, 6+). June’s 6.5 was the lowest 6+- showing for “Mix” since October 2018’s 5.3. In June, Curtis Media Group adult hits WBBB “96.1 BBB – Your Life/Your Music” and iHeartMedia’s WRDU “Classic Rock 100.7” each logged gains of six-tenths. As WBBB replicates that accomplishment and is an overall +1.8 in six straight sweeps without a loss (4.8 – 4.9 – 5.0 – 5.4 – 5.4 – 6.0 – 6.6, 6+), WRDU spirals by -1.4 to 5.5 (6+), virtually negating its +1.5 in three consecutive positive or neutral moves (5.4 – 6.3 – 6.3 – 6.9, 6+). WBBB jumps from eighth to fifth, while “Classic Rock 100.7” tumbles from fourth to eighth. Radio One urban contemporary WQOK “K-97.5” has followed its combined March/April -1.6  (7.8 – 7.3 – 6.2, 6+) with a +.7 (6.9, May, 6+); -.7 (6.2, June, 6+); and +.5 in July (6.7, sixth to third, 6+). Notching a June 2019 – July 2019 half-share gain as well is Curtis Media Group’s WPLW, netting a +1.3 in three successive sweeps without a loss (3.2 – 4.0 – 4.0 – 4.5, 6+). Steady at #11, “Pulse FM” has its best 6+-showing (4.5) in just over two years (4.9, June 2017). Setting the pace the 12th consecutive survey period, Radio One urban AC WFXC “Foxy – Today’s R&B and Classic Soul” is nonetheless an overall -2.8 in six straight down or flat sweeps (11.0 – 9.9 – 9.5 – 9.5 – 9.1 – 8.8 – 8.2, 6+). A half-dozen recent “Foxy” fluctuations include: +.9 (November 2018); -1.5 (December); +1.1 (“Holiday” 2018); +1.1 (January 2019); -1.1 (February); and -.6 (July).  January’s +1.1 took WFXC to 11.0, its highest 6+-stat in the PPM-era. In that same vein, the four most recent shifts for Curtis Media Group-owned WQDR-FM “94.7 – Today’s Best Country” are: +.7 (April); -.5 (May); +.6 (June); and -.8 in July (7.3 – 6.5, third to sixth, 6+). “Today’s Best Country” logged a 6.5 (6+) in March, as well. After having wiped away its combined March/April -.9 (6.0 – 5.4 – 5.1, 6+) with a May/June +1.1 (5.1 – 5.5 – 6.2, 6+), iHeartMedia-owned CHR WDCG “G-105 – Raleigh’s #1 Hit Music Station” “G-105” surrenders six-tenths in July (5.6, sixth to seventh, 6+). Owing to seven consecutive down or flat Raleigh reports (3.2 – 2.9 – 2.1 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 1.6 – 1.6 – 1.6, 6+), Curtis Media Group-owned regional Mexican WYMY has had its 6+ AQH share sliced precisely in half (-1.6); “La Ley 101.1” continues at #17. Curtis Media Group classic country WQDR-AM debuted in print in “Holiday” 2018. In five up or flat reports, “Just Right Country – AM 570” progressed from a .1 to 1.0 (.1 – .1 – .4 – .8 – .8 – 1.0, 6+). Roughly halfway through the June sweep (6/4), the station switched to hot AC; changed call letters to WPLW-AM; and adopted a new handle  “Star 92.9.” Raleigh’s new “Star” is a combined -.8 in June/July (#20 in May to #23 in June to #24 in July, 6+).

Indianapolis

Spoken-Word Formats – Steady in fifth-place, Emmis news/talk WIBC “Indy’s Mobile News 93.1” follows June’s gain of nine-tenths with a loss of four-tenths (6.4 – 6.0, 6+). Ten recent WIBC fluctuations are: -.7 (September 2018); +1.0 (October); +.7 (November); -.9 (December); -.9 (“Holiday” 2018); +.9 (January 2019); +.9 (February); -.8 (March); -1.2 (April); and +.9 (June).

Even though it is off a combined half-share in June/July (2.4 – 2.3 – 1.9, 6+), WIBC cluster-mate WFNI “The Fan – Indy’s Sports Center” advances from #17 to #16. It has a nine-tenths advantage over iHeartMedia’s WNDE “Indy’s Sports Station,” which has lost a total of eight-tenths in six successive sweeps without an increase (1.8 – 1.7 – 1.7 – 1.3 – 1.2 – 1.0 – 1.0, 6+) but progresses from #19 to #18. Following 16 consecutive sweeps of logging either a .1 or .2 (6+), Cumulus Media’s WXNT disappeared in June; “CBS Sports AM 1430” resurfaces in July though with a .1 (#22, 6+).

Having lost seven-tenths in June (4.6 – 3.9, 6+), Metropolitan Indianapolis Public Broadcasting news/talk WFYI rebounds with a +1.0 to 4.9 (tenth to eighth, 6+).

Indianapolis Music Formats – Not only is Cumulus Media classic hits-oldies WJJK #1 the seventh consecutive month, “Classic Hits 104.5” chalks up a robust +1.4 to 11.1 (6+), obliterating its May/June -.5 (10.2 – 9.9 – 9.7, 6+). Furthermore, 11.2 is the highest 6+-share in the station’s PPM-history, eclipsing April’s 10.2. Among  WJJK’s 2019 shifts are: +2.9 (January); -.7 (February); -.6 (March); +1.7 (April); and +1.4 (July). After spending six straight sweeps on top, “Classic Hits 104.5” slipped to third in “Holiday” 2018 but returned to #1 in January 2019. A combined +1.1 in June/July (6.1 – 6.2 – 7.2, 6+), Emmis’ WLHK “Country 97.1 Hank” jumps from sixth to fourth. The last time “Hank” reached the seven-share threshold was May 2018 (7.1). It is three-tenths behind Cumulus Media’s similarly-formatted WFMS “95.5 The Country Station,” which has a May – June – July topline of 7.4 – 7.6 – 7.5 (second to third, 6+). The day after the June sweep commenced (5/24), WFMS’ CHR sibling, WYRG “Energy 93.9,” flipped to rock WNDX. In June and July, “93.9-X” responds by nearly tripling (+2.3) its 6+-stat (1.3 – 2.8 – 3.6, 6+, 6+) and has jumped from #18 (May) to #16 (June) to #12 (July). After being off six-tenths in four consecutive down or flat reports (1.8 – 1.8 – 1.7 – 1.6 – 1.2, 6+), “Energy” gained one-tenth in May. By improving four-tenths in July to 7.8 (third to second, 6+), Emmis adult contemporary WYXB “B-105.7” ends a May/June slide that accounted for a -1.4 (8.8 – 8.2 – 7.4, 6+). April’s +1.9 (to 8.8, 6+) suspended three negative moves in succession that resulted in a -9.5 (16.4 – 7.6 – 7.0 – 6.9, 6+). On the heels of losing one-half share in June, iHeartMedia-owned WFBQ “Q-95 Indy’s Classic Rock” falters by another eight-tenths in July (7.2 – 6.7 – 5.9, 6+), skidding from fourth to seventh. “Q-95” hadn’t been below a six-share (6+) since March 2017’s 5.8. A May loss of four-tenths by WTLC-FM “106.7 Indy’s R&B Leader” curtailed four successive up or flat trends that yielded eight-tenths (4.6 – 4.6 – 5.0 – 5.3 – 5.4, 6+). The Radio One urban AC rebounded with a one-half share increase only to drop seven-tenths in July (5.5 – 4.8, eighth to ninth, 6+). Regressing by seven-tenths as well is iHeartMedia-owned WOLT “Alt 103.3 Indy’s Alternative” (3.6 – 2.9, #12 to #14, 6+).

Milwaukee

Spoken-Word Formats – April/May provided Good Karma Brands’ news/talk WTMJ “Wisconsin’s Radio Station” a +3.5 (5.9 – 8.8 – 9.4, 6+), but the Brewers flagship is -1.8 in June/July ( 9.4 – 8.7 – 7.6, second to third, 6+). Recent WTMJ shifts include +2.5 (October 2018); -1.0 (November); -2.6 (December); +2.9 (April 2019); -.7 (June); and -1.1 (July). The six-tenths iHeartMedia’s WISN “News/Talk 1130” gained in April/May (5.1 – 5.5 – 5.7, 6+) evaporates with June/July’s -.7 (5.7 – 5.3 – 5.0, seventh to ninth, 6+).

Five Milwaukee sports talk outlets combine for a 2.3 (July 2019, 6+), down one-tenth from June. Leading the field is iHeartMedia’s WRNW “The Game,” which has tripled its 6+-stat since April (.3 – .6 – .8 – 9, #17 to #16, 6+). In late-November (2018), CHR WRNW “Now” became sports talk “The Game” and this (.9) is the best 6+-stat on that frequency since 2.8 (December 2018). Good Karma Brands’ WKTI “94.5 ESPN” and Entercom-owned WSSP “Sports Radio 105.7 The Fan” were tied in May (1.0, 6+) and again in June (.6, 6+). The ties are broken in July though as WKTI is up one-tenth to .7 (#19 to #18, 6+), halting three straight winless sweeps in which it lost roughly half (-.7) its 6+ audience (1.3 – 1.0 – 1.0 – .6, 6+). Meanwhile, WSSP is a collective -1.0 in five straight dips (1.4 – 1.3 – 1.2 – 1.0 – .6 – .4, 6+) and departs the top twenty (#19 to #21). WRNW cluster-mate WOKY “The Big 920” posts a .2 (6+) for the seventh time in the last nine sweeps (.2 – .3 – .2 – .2 – .3 – .2 – .2 – .2 – .2, #24 to #22, 6+). After popping on in November 2018 with a .5 (6+), Good Karma Brands’ WAUK disappeared from print the next seven ratings periods. It returned in June with a .2 (6+) but drops one-tenth to .1 (#24 to #28, 6+).

In five straight negative or neutral moves (4.8 – 4.8 – 4.4 – 3.9 – 3.3 – 3.0, 6+), University of Wisconsin news/talk outlet WUWM is a collective -1.8 but is anchored at #13. This directly follows three reports in a row without a loss that netted a +1.2 (3.6 – 4.5 – 4.8 – 4.8, 6+). Off one-half share as a result of five straight negative or neutral moves (1.3 – 1.1 – 1.1 – 1.0 – .9 -.8, 6+), Wisconsin Public Radio news/talk WHAD slips from #16 to #17.

Milwaukee Music Formats – Four straight down or flat moves by Saga Communications’ WKLH resulted in a -1.1 (8.1 – 7.9 – 7.9 – 7.3 – 7.0, 6+), but “96.5 Milwaukee’s Hometown Rock” makes that shortfall vanish completely with a +1.4 to 8.4 (6+) and advances from third to second. Doubling June’s increase of six-tenths with a July +1.2 (5.3 – 5.9 – 7.1, 6+), iHeartMedia-owned WMIL “FM 106.1 Milwaukee’s Best Country” climbs from fifth to fourth. This (7.1) is the highest 6+-stat for “Milwaukee’s Best Country” since 7.5 in January. Four positive or neutral moves in succession by co-owned urban contemporary WKKV yield a +1.1 (4.3 – 4.3 – 4.8 – 4.8 – 5.4, 6+) as “V-100.7 Jams” rockets from tenth to fifth. Repeating at #1, iHeartMedia classic hits-oldies WRIT “95.7 Big FM Milwaukee’s Greatest Hits” is +1.1 in June/July (8.6 – 9.4 – 9.7, 6+). WRIT occupied the lead position five straight sweeps before segueing to #2 in May with its lowest 6+-figure (8.6) since December 2018’s 7.7. Having spent 43 consecutive ratings periods at #1, “Big FM” shifted to #2 in October 2018. “Holiday” 2018’s 11.5 is the strongest 6+-stat for any Milwaukee station since WRIT’s 11.6 in “Holiday” 2017. Eight of its recent moves are: -1.0 (December); +3.8 (“Holiday” 2018); – 1.9 (January 2019); +.6 (February); -.8 (March); +.7 (April); -1.5 (May); and +.8 (June). Absorbing a -1.6 is Entercom hot AC WMYX “99.1 The Mix” (6.7 – 5.1, 6+), slumping from fourth to eight with its lowest 6+-stat (5.1) since November 2018’s 4.8. A loss of seven-tenths (5.1 – 4.4, 6+) by Saga Communications’ WHQG sends “102.9 The Hog Everything That Rocks” from ninth to tenth.

Middlesex

Spoken-Word Formats – While this is the sixth time in a row that Townsquare Media news/talk WKXW hasn’t had an increase and is -1.2 in that stretch (8.1 – 7.9 – 7.5 – 7.3 – 7.1 – 6.9 – 6.9, 6+), “New Jersey 101.5” is #1 the sixth successive month. After logging a 3.0 (6+) in May, iHeartMedia news/talk WOR is stuck on 2.9 in June and July (#15 to #17, 6+). Cumulus Media news/talk WABC started 2019 by recording a 1.0 (6+) in January, February, and March. Since then, its April through July topline is: .7 – .6 – .7 – .9 (#27 to #25, 6+).

An improvement of three-tenths by Entercom sports talk WFAN takes the Yankees flagship to a four-share (3.7 – 4.0, steady at #10, 6+) for the first time since October 2018 (4.2). Similarly-programmed WEPN “98.7 ESPN New York,” which added seven-tenths in May, is down a combined nine-tenths in June/July (2.5 – 2.1 – 1.6, #21 to #23, 6+).

A collective +.3 in three straight gains of one-tenth each (1.6 – 1.7 – 1.8 – 1.9, 6+), Entercom all-news WINS jumps from #24 to #21. Co-owned/similarly-programmed Mets flagship WCBS-AM is off four-tenths (2.5 – 2.1, 6+) and falls from #18 to #19.

Tied with WINS at #21 is WNYC Broadcasting Foundation’s WNYC-FM, which is off six-tenths in three consecutive setbacks (2.5 – 2.2 – 2.0 – 1.9, #22 to #21, 6+).

Middlesex Music Formats – As a result of three positive spikes in succession (2.7 – 2.8 – 3.0 – 3.6, 6+), rhythmic CHR WQHT “Hot 97” is an overall +.9 and progresses from #13 to #11. This is its best 6+ performance in Middlesex-Somerset-Union since November 2018 (3.6, as well). WQHT’s format rival, iHeartMedia-owned WKTU, posts a gain of three-tenths to 3.1 (#17 to #15, 6+), thus suspending three down or flat moves in a row that led to a loss of two-tenths (3.0 – 2.9 – 2.8 – 2.8, 6+). Advancing from eighth to sixth, Beasley Media Group adult contemporary WMGQ “Magic 98.3 – Today’s Hits/Yesterday’s Favorites” is up one full-share in three consecutive positive or neutral trends (3.4 – 4.1 – 4.1 – 4.4, 6+). Four successive improvements by Entercom hot AC WNEW yield a +1.6 (3.4 – 3.8 – 3.9 – 4.5 – 5.0, 6+) as “NEW 102.7” continues in fifth-place. Meanwhile, its former hot AC competitor, WPLJ, is a combined -3.4 in June/July (3.8 – 2.0 – .4, 6+) and fades from #22 to #30. Cumulus Media sold WPLJ to Educational Media Foundation, which shifted the station from hot AC to contemporary Christian on May 31. On the heels of June’s gain of eight-tenths (5.8 – 6.6, 6+), iHeartMedia New York mainstream CHR WHTZ forfeits seven-tenths to 5.9 (6+) but continues in the runner-up slot. When “Z-100” faltered by four-tenths in May, it halted four straight improvements that netted +1.9 (4.3 – 4.5 – 5.2 – 5.8 – 6.2, 6+). Co-owned urban contemporary WWPR “Power 105.1” is off an overall one-half share in three sweeps in a row without an increase (3.7 – 3.5 – 3.5 – 3.2, #11 to #14, 6+). Down or flat the third straight time as well is Spanish Broadcasting System Spanish tropical WSKQ “Mega 97.9,” which has faltered by seven-tenths since April (3.7 – 3.6 – 3.0 – 30, #13 to #16, 6+).

Nashville

Spoken-Word Formats – A June gain of four-tenths by Cumulus Media news/talk WWTN ended three straight down or flat moves that resulted in a collective one-half share loss (3.6 – 3.6 – 3.2 – 3.1, 6+). Now, “Super Talk 99.7” repeats June’s 6+ AQH-share (3.5) and 6+-rank (#12). Although flat at #17, iHeartMedia news/talk WLAC “Talk Radio 98.3 & 1510” improves by four-tenths to 1.8, its best 6+-stat in nearly four years (2.0, October 2015).

In three straight decreases (5.5 – 4.8 – 4.2 – 2.7, 6+), Cumulus Media-owned sports talk WGFX had its 6+ AQH-share sliced approximately in half (-2.8), but “104.5 The Zone” picks up two-tenths to 2.9 (6+) and continues at  #14. Prior to June, the last time WGFX fell below a three-share (6+) was July 2017 (2.7, as well). Meanwhile, Cromwell Group-owned WPRT “102.5 The Game” is a combined -1.1 in three straight down or flat moves (1.9 – 1.1 – .8 – .8, #22 to #21, 6+).

May/June’s +1.2 (4.4 – 5.4 – 5.6, 6+) by Nashville Public Radio’s WPLN-FM “NPR News and Classical Music” essentially wiped away March/April’s -1.3 (5.7 – 4.8 – 4.4, 6+), but the news/talk/classical hybrid outlet falters by one-half share in July to 5.1 (fifth to seventh, 6+).

Nashville Music Formats – The market’s three major country FMs were separated by just three-tenths of a share in June, but the gap widens to 1.5 (6+). Winning ways continue for iHeartMedia’s WSIX, which is a whopping +2.7 in seven consecutive sweeps without a loss (3.5 – 4.7 – 4.7 – 5.0 – 5.2 – 5.2 – 5.2 – 6.2, 6+). Not only does “The Big 98 – Nashville’s #1 for New Country” jump from eighth to fourth, it reaches the six-share level (6.2, 6+) for the first time since April 2017’s 6.1. Cumulus Media’s WSM-FM “95.5 Nash Icon” logs a 5.0 (6+) for the fifth time in the last six sweeps (5.0 – 5.0 – 5.0 – 5.2 – 5.0 – 5.0, 6+) and advances from ninth to eighth. After posting a collective +2.2 in five straight gains (4.1 – 4.2 – 5.4 – 5.9 – 6.1 – 6.3, 6+), co-owned WKDF “103.3 Nash FM” is a combined -1.6 in three setbacks in succession (6.3 – 5.8 – 5.3 – 4.7, sixth to tenth, 6+). It’s been a rollercoaster ride lately for Educational Media Foundation contemporary Christian WLVU “Positive & Encouraging K-Love,” which was +.7 in April (3.0 – 3.7, 6+); a combined -1.7 in May/June (3.7 – 2.8 – 2.0, 6+); and is now +.8 in July (2.8, steady at #15, 6+). June’s 2.0 was its lowest 6+-stat since February 2018’s 1.0. Tacking on six-tenths to June’s positive spike of nine-tenths (7.2 – 7.8, 6+), iHeartMedia’s WNRQ progresses from third to second. Entering the June sweep, “105.9 The Rock” was an overall -1.2 in three successive down or flat reports (7.5 – 6.6 – 6.3 – 6.3, 6+). An overall +1.6 in three successive upticks (8.2 – 9.2 – 9.6 – 9.8, 6+) – which immediately follows four straight decreases that resulted in a collective -5.9 (14.1 – 10.6 – 9.3 – 8.8 – 8.2, 6+) – Midwest Communications adult contemporary WJXA is #1 the third month in a row. Before forfeiting six-tenths in April, “Mix 92.9 – Your Life, Your Music” had been on top the previous 15 ratings periods. Seven recent WJXA fluctuations include: +1.9 (December 2018); +3.2 (“Holiday” 2018); -3.5 (January 2019); -1.3 (February); -.5 (March); -.6 (April); and +1.0 (May). “Holiday” 2018’s 14.1 is the highest 6+-share for any Nashville outlet since WJXA’s 14.4 in “Holiday” 2017. On the other hand, in three consecutive negative or neutral sweeps, co-owned adult hits WCJK “Jack” is a collective -1.6 (8.4 – 7.6 – 7.6 – 6.8, 6+) and segues from second to third. After dropping one-half share in June, iHeartMedia urban contemporary WUBT “101.1 The Beat” falters by another seven-tenths (6.8 – 6.3 – 5.6, fourth to fifth, 6+) and has its lowest 6+-share (5.6) since December 2016 (4.9). Following five positive spikes in a row which nearly quadrupled (+1.3) its 6+-stat (.5 – .6 – .8 – .9 – 1.5 – 1.8, 6+), TBLC Media Spanish contemporary WNVL “Activa 105.1 & 1240 AM” forfeits roughly half that increase (1.2, -.6, #16 to #20, 6+). A collective +1.0 through four straight bumps (3.5 – 3.8 – 3.9 – 4.1 – 4.5, 6+), Salem Media Group contemporary Christian WFFH “The Fish” is off one-tenth to 4.4 (6+) but repeats at #11. June’s 4.5 was its best 6+-stat since “Holiday” 2018’s 4.7. Unchanged in sixth-place, iHeartMedia CHR WRVW “107.5 The River” has a March 2019 through July 2019 topline of: 5.3 – 5.9 – 5.9 – 5.3 – 5.3 (6+).

Providence

Spoken-Word Formats – While down seven-tenths via three consecutive sweeps without an increase (3.8 – 3.7 – 3.1 – 3.1, 6+), Cumulus Media’s WPRO-AM “News Talk 630” inches up from eighth to a seventh-place tie. Five downturns in a row by iHeartMedia-owned news/talk WHJJ have resulted in a more than 50% reduction (-1.2) of its 6+-AQH share (2.1 – 1.9 – 1.7 – 1.6 – 1.3 – .9, 6+) as “Providence’s News, Traffic, and Weather” drifts from #14 to #17. Even though Cumulus Media’s WPRV forfeits two-tenths (.7 – .5, 6+), “AM 790 Talk & Business” is back in the top twenty (#21 to #20).

A one-half share loss (3.6 – 3.1, flat at #7, 6+) sends Entercom sports talker WVEI to its lowest 6+-stat (3.1) since March 2018’s 2.8.

Even though iHeartMedia Boston hybrid news – talk WBZ-AM is off by three-tenths in three consecutive Providence reports without an increase (1.3 – 1.2 – 1.0 – 1.0, 6+), “News Radio 1030” advances from #18 to #16.

By gaining six-tenths (1.6 – 2.2, 6+), WGBH Educational Foundation Boston news/talk WGBH jumps into the top ten (#12 to  #9). WGBH, which notched a 1.6 (6+) five times in the last seven survey periods (1.6 – 1.6 – 1.9 – 1.6 – 1.6 – 1.7 – 1.6, 6+), overtakes The Wheeler School’s news/talk WELH, which has lost three-tenths in three successive down or flat sweeps (2.0 – 2.0 – 1.9 – 1.7, 6+). WELH exits the top ten (#10 to #11).

Providence Music Formats – Albeit unchanged at #6, iHeartMedia-owned hot AC WSNE vaporizes June’s -.7 with a July increase twice that size (4.3 – 5.7, +1.4, 6+). Prior to June’s loss, “Coast 93.3” was a collective +1.2 in three consecutive improvements (3.8 – 4.3 – 4.5 – 5.0, 6+). This is its best 6+-performance in just over two years (June 2017, 5.7, as well). Despite dropping four-tenths (10.2 – 9.8, 6+), co-owned WHJY “94 HJY Providence’s Home of Rock & Roll” is #1 the third month in a row. An April loss of nine-tenths forced WHJY from the top spot after three straight months there. The decline halted four consecutive positive or flat moves that netted a +2.0 (8.5 – 9.8 – 9.8 – 9.8 – 10.5, 6+). Before taking over at #1 in January, WHJY was in the runner-up slot from September 2018 through “Holiday” 2018. Locked on 7.4 (6+) in May and June, Cumulus Media CHR WPRO-FM “Today’s Hit Music 92 PRO-FM” (flat at #5) sputters by six-tenths to 6.8, its lowest 6+-stat since January (6.8, as well). Meanwhile, iHeartMedia Boston’s similarly-programmed WXKS-FM “Kiss 108” is up a collective half-share via five successive up or flat Providence moves (1.1 – 1.2 – 1.2 – 1.5 – 1.5 – 1.6, #13 to #12, 6+). Also in the CHR arena, Townsquare Media’s WFHN “Fun 107 – The South Coast’s #1 Hit Music Station” sees its 6+-stat erode by two-thirds (-2.8) in six negative or neutral reports in succession (4.2 – 3.7 – 2.6 – 1.9 – 1.9 – 1.6 – 1.4, 6+) and drops from #11 to #14. Immediately in advance of this stretch, WFHN more than tripled (+3.0) its 6+-stat as a result of six successive up or flat moves (1.2 – 1.3 – 1.4 – 1.4 – 1.5 – 1.7 – 4.2, 6+). Cumulus Media rhythmic CHR WWKX “Hot 106” has lost six-tenths in June/July (2.4 – 2.3 – 1.8, ninth to tenth, 6+) and is below a two-share (6+) for the first time since October 2018 (1.8, as well). Disappearing from print in July are Red Wolf Broadcasting Spanish tropical WKKB “Latina 100.3,” which posted a 1.2 in June (#16, 6+) and classic hits-oldies sibling WSKP “Good Times … Great Oldies” (.8, #19, June 2019, 6+).

Norfolk

Spoken-Word Formats – Highly noteworthy here is the return to print of Max Media stations that had been unlisted the past three years. Included in that group is sports talk WVSP “ESPN Radio 94.1,” which has a July 2019 1.2 (#16, 6+); its internet stream appears with a .1 (#19, 6+).

Norfolk Music Formats – Other Max Media outlets listed again after a hiatus of exactly three years (July 2016)  are country WGH-FM “97.3 The Eagle” (4.7, #7, 6+); adult contemporary WVBW “92.9 The Wave” (3.4, #9, 6+); CHR WVHT “Hot 100” (3.2, #10, 6+); urban AC/talk hybrid WGH-AM “1310 The Power” (.1, #19, 6+); and the internet streams of WGH-FM and WVBW (both at .1, #19, 6+). Among stations affected by the reappearance of Max Media stations from a ranker standpoint are iHeartMedia alternative WNOH “Alt 105.3” and Entercom hot AC WPTE “94.9 The Point.” Notwithstanding that it has nearly tripled (+1.4) its 6+-stat in seven straight survey periods without a loss (.8 – .9 – 1.0 – 1.1 – 1.4 – 1.4 – 1.9 – 2.2, 6+), “Alt 105.3” exits the top ten (#8 to #11). Meanwhile, “94.9 The Point,” an overall +1.2 in three consecutive up or flat trends (2.8 – 2.8 – 3.2, 4.0, 6+) backslides from seventh to eighth. Moreover, this (4.0) is the best 6+-showing for “The Point” since September 2017’s 4.4. Setting the pace the seventh consecutive month, WPTE’s urban AC cluster-mate – WVKL “Smooth R&B from Yesterday & Today” – nonetheless spirals by -1.4 (11.4 – 10.0, 6+). WVKL was a combined -2.4 in March/April (12.9 – 11.6 – 10.5, 6+) and then added a +1.0 in May to 11.5 (6+). Just prior to logging a 10.5 this past April, WVKL had posted a 6+-share of 11.0 or higher 37 of 38 times. “Smooth R&B from Yesterday & Today” had been on top 25 successive survey periods before segueing to the runner-up slot in “Holiday” 2018. Its August 2018 15.5 holds the record for highest 6+-performance by any Norfolk station in the PPM-era. Following four successive positive or neutral moves that netted eight-tenths (7.4 – 7.6 – 7.8 – 7.8 – 8.2, 6+), Saga Communications-owned classic rock WAFX “106.9 The Fox” (second to third) surrenders a -1.2 to 7.0, its lowest 6+-stat since “Holiday” 2018’s 6.1.

Jacksonville

Spoken-Word Formats – Over and above pulling the plug on five consecutive down or flat sweeps that accounted for a collective -2.9 (10.4 – 9.7 – 8.8 – 8.6 – 8.6 – 7.5, 6+), Cox Media Group news/talk WOKV-FM (7.5 – 8.0, +.5, 6+) marches from second to first. Tied for the top spot in May, WOKV-FM 104.5 – Jacksonville’s News, Weather, and Traffic” had sole possession of first-place in January, February, and April.

Without an increase the ninth consecutive time for a net loss of 75% (-.6) of its 6+-stat (.8 – .7 – .6 – .6 – .5 – .3 – .3 -.3 – .2 – .2, 6+), iHeartMedia sports talk WFXJ “930 The Game – Jacksonville’s Sports Leader” drops from #19 to #20.

Down or flat the fourth straight sweep for a net decrease of seven-tenths (3.7 – 3.5 – 3.3 – 3.0 – 3.0, 6+), public news/talk WJCT repeats at #12. Immediately prior to April, “Your Community – Your World” was a cumulative +1.5 in five increases in a row (2.2 – 2.3 – 2.4 – 3.0 – 3.5 – 3.7, 6+).

Jacksonville Music Formats – A May/June mini-slide by Renda Broadcasting’s WGNE that resulted in a loss of nine-tenths concludes with a July improvement of eight-tenths to 4.3 (6+) as “99.9 Gator Country” enters the top ten (#11 to #9). Advancing from a fifth-place tie to a fourth-place tie with identical (6.0 – 6.6, +.6, 6+) June 2019 – July 2019 profiles are Cox Media Group CHR WAPE “95.1 Jacksonville’s #1 Hit Music Station” and iHeartMedia urban contemporary WJBT “93.3 The Beat.” WAPE had been an overall -1.3 in three straight sweeps without an increase (7.3 – 7.2 – 7.0 – 6.0, 6+) with June’s 6.0 its weakest 6+-stat since 5.2 in “Holiday” 2018. Meanwhile, “The Beat” – +1.4 in June – has its best 6+-showing (6.6) since May 2017’s 7.2. Improving by six-tenths as well in July is iHeartMedia gospel WKSL-HD3, which erases June’s loss of six-tenths (2.9 – 2.3 – 2.9, #14 to #13, 6+). Prior to the June sweep, WKSL-HD3 had shown a net increase of seven-tenths in four straight positive or neutral sweeps (2.2 – 2.2 – 2.2 – 2.7 – 2.9, 6+). The market’s adult contemporary battle tightens as the two principals are now separated by just nine-tenths of a share. Specifically, Renda Broadcasting’s WEJZ “96.1 Jacksonville’s Official Work Station” is a collective -1.5 in four setbacks in succession (8.7 – 8.3 – 7.6 – 7.5 – 7.2, second to third, 6+), while Cox Media Group’s WEZI “Easy 102.9” nets +1.8 in four consecutive bumps (4.5 – 4.9 – 5.1 – 5.9 – 6.3, 6+) and is anchored at #7. “Holiday” 2018’s 16.3 by WEJZ is the highest 6+-mark for any Jacksonville station since “Holiday” 2015 when WEJZ notched a 19.5. A combined +1.1 in January/February, WEZI surrendered roughly half that increase with a March loss of six-tenths. In three straight reports without an increase, Cox Media Group-owned WXXJ lost seven-tenths (3.1 – 3.1 – 3.0 – 2.4, 6+), but “X-106.5 Jacksonville’s Alternative” answers with a one-half share gain to 2.9 (6+) and continues at #13. On the strength of June’s +1.0, iHeartMedia-owned CHR WKSL crossed the five-share level (5.2, 6+) but “97.9 Kiss FM” craters by -1.4 to 3.8 (6+) and drops from eighth to tenth. In addition to being -1.3 in June/July (8.6 – 8.1 – 7.3, 6+), Cox Media Group classic hits-oldies WJGL “96.9 The Eagle” segues from first to second. After a March-only stay at #1, “The Eagle” shifted to a second-place tie in April; progressed to a first-place tie in May; and had sole possession of first-place in June. WJGL’s April loss of six-tenths interrupted three upticks in succession that resulted in a +1.6 (7.3 – 8.1 – 8.6 – 8.9, 6+). Off nine-tenths in June/July (2.7 – 2.3 – 1.8, 6+), co-owned urban AC WOKV-HD2 drops from #14 to #16.

West Palm Beach

Spoken-Word Formats – There seems to be no stopping iHeartMedia-owned WJNO, which is a collective +1.7 in five successive sweeps without a loss (2.0 – 2.3 – 2.7 – 2.7 – 3.1 – 3.7, 6+) as “1290 The Palm Beaches’ News & Talk” zooms from ninth to sixth. June marked the first time WJNO reached the three-share level since December 2017’s 3.3. Up a combined seven-tenths in June/July (1.7 – 2.0 – 2.4, 6+), Hubbard Broadcasting’s WFTL “News Talk 850” advances from #13 to #11. In three straight down or flat sweeps, iHeartMedia-owned news/talk WZZR “Real Radio 94.3 – Real Talk For The Palm Beaches” loses four-tenths (2.3 – 2.3 – 2.0 – 1.9, 6+) and slips from #13 to #14. Miami news/talk sibling WIOD “610 News Radio” is up three-tenths in June/July (.6 – .8 – .9, 6+) and reenters the top twenty (#22 to #20).

Co-owned sports talk WBZT “1230 The Zone” posted a .1 (6+) in August 2018 but has been a “no-show” in the subsequent 12 ratings periods.

While it repeats at #10, Dade County School Board news/talk WLRN is up two-tenths to 3.1 (6+), its best 6+-stat since March (3.1, as well).

West Palm Beach Music Formats – Adding one-half share to June’s +1.2 (2.0 – 3.2 – 3.7, 6+), iHeartMedia Spanish contemporary WRLX “Mia 92.1” jumps from eighth to sixth. On top the seventh time in a row, Hubbard Broadcasting hot AC WRMF “Variety from the 90s and Now” is nonetheless an overall -3.4 via four successive downturns (11.2 – 9.0 – 8.8 – 8.2 – 7.8, 6+). This (7.8) is it lowest 6+-share – and first time below an eight-share (6+) – since “Holiday” 2016 (7.7). On the other hand, WRMF logged a +2.0 in March to 11.2, its highest 6+-share since November 2017 (11.2, as well). Having faltered by -1.0 in January, WRMF was frozen on 9.2 (6+) in January and February. Cluster-mate WIRK “South Florida’s New Country 103.1” is down seven-tenths in June/July (3.9 – 3.7 – 3.2, 6+), slipping from seventh to ninth. Regressing by eight-tenths (7.2 – 6.4, 6+), iHeartMedia-owned adult contemporary WOLL “Today’s Kool 105.5” segues from second to third. Whereas June’s 7.2 was the best 6+-showing for “Kool” since July 2016’s 7.5, this is its softest since March (6.4, as well). An overall -1.7 via three straight decreases (8.2 – 7.0 – 6.8 – 6.5, 6+), Hubbard Broadcasting’s similarly-formatted WEAT-FM “Sunny 107.9” applies the brakes with a one-tenth increase to 6.6 (6+) and leapfrogs “Kool” (third to second). In six straight positive spikes, iHeartMedia CHR WLDI was +1.6 (2.5 – 2.7 – 3.0 – 3.3 – 3.4 – 3.9 – 4.1, 6+) and reached the four-share level (4.1, June 2019, 6+) for the first time since August 2018’s 4.0. In July, however, “WiLD 95.5 The Palm Beaches’ #1 Hit Music Station” forfeits one-tenth to 4.0 (6+) and carries on in fourth-place. Hubbard Broadcasting urban AC WMBX “X-102.3” is a collective -2.2 in three straight setbacks (5.9 – 5.0 – 4.1 – 3.7, 6+) and dips from fourth to sixth. An April gain of six-tenths took WMBX to 5.9, its highest 6+-share since May 2018’s 6.2. While off a full-share in three drops in succession (2.7 – 2.5 – 1.9 – 1.7, 6+), WAY Media contemporary Christian WAYF “WAY-FM Uplifting – Upbeat – Real” climbs from #16 to a tie at #15.

Friday, July 18, 2014

| July 18, 2014

horowitzdrewHubbard Names Drew Horowitz President and COO.  Just a week after announcing that president and CEO Bruce Reese was stepping down from his role with the company, Hubbard Radio today announces that Drew Horowitz, executive vice president and chief operating officer, is named president and chief operating officer, effective immediately.  Ginny Morris remains chairman and chief executive officer.  She states, “For the past few years I have had the privilege to work with Drew and see first-hand what a giftedhubbardradio logo broadcaster he is.  Drew’s passion for the radio business and for the people with whom he works is evident in how he approaches every opportunity and every challenge.  I look forward to further partnering with him as we continue to move our business forward.”  Horowitz came over to Hubbard from Bonneville International in 2011 where he’d been EVP and COO since 1992.  Horowitz comments, “I am honored to have this wonderful opportunity to work more closely with Ginny and to be part of this extraordinary family-owned company.  I’m looking forward to continuing my work with the rest of the leadership team to further Hubbard Radio’s success across our seven nationwide markets.”

2014 NYC logo 150Talkers New York 2014 Videos Being Posted.  Up Today:  Michael Harrison Moderates “Radio: The Big Picture” Panel.  Today (7/18) marks the fourth day of TALKERS magazine’s video posting of speeches, sessions and presentations made during last month’s 17th annual installment of the talk media industry’s longest-running and most important national convention – Talkers New York 2014.  The presentation of these informative and historic recordings is sponsored by WYD Media Sales, LLC., the rep firm recently launched by Ron Hartenbaum and headed by John Murphy, that specializes in the advertising sales of spoken-word media on all popular platforms.  The worldwide showing of these very special videos continues today with the event’s powerful “Radio: The Big Picture” panel moderated by TALKERS publisher Michael Harrison. The panel features an array of leading radio figures including Steve Goldstein, EVP, Saga Communications; Sam Kimball, CRO, Livestream; Tom Langmyer, VP/news/talk programming, Journal Broadcast GroupTom Leykis, CEO, The New Normal; Mike McVay, SVP, Cumulus Media; and Walter Sabo, CEO, Sabo Media.  As Michael Harrison’s series of “Big Picture” panels are known to do, this fast-paced, sometimes rollicking session cuts a broad swath across many of the universal topics of importance to radio broadcasters in general – including the future of the stick (AM/FM radio), the relationship between talk and music radio, the pros and cons of utilizing video as a component of digital radio, the evolving relationship between radio and newspapers, techniques for lowering the news/talk demos, overcoming the challenges of rating radio accurately in the digital era and much more.  To view “Radio: The Big Picture” please click here.  Coming Monday: “The State of Local Talk Radio” panel moderated by TALKERS GM of broadcast operations, David Bernstein and featuring Michael “Bax” Baxendale, morning co-host, WAQY (Rock 102), Springfield, MA; Jerry Crowley, VP/GM Salem Communications-New York; Lee Harris, morning anchor, 1010WINS, New York; McGraw Milhaven, morning host, KTRS, St. Louis; and Larry Young, morning host, WOLB, Baltimore.  The TALKERS conference videos were recorded by Art Vuolo.

chapmanjakePistons Radio Network Chooses Chapman to Be Executive Producer.  Five-year Orlando Magic radio network executive producer Jake Chapman departs the Sunshine State to handle similar responsibilities for the Detroit Pistons radio network and its Greater Media sports-formatted flagship WMGC “Detroit Sports 105.1.”  WMGC program director Jason Dixon states, “We are thrilled to welcome Jake to the ‘Detroit Sports 105.1’ and Pistons radio network team.  His skill set and his experience working in the NBA made him a perfect fit to join us. Jake shares our vision to provide Pistons fans with unparalleled content and coverage of their team.” Palace Sports & Entertainment and Detroit Pistons executive vice president/chief marketing officer Charlie Metzger remarks, “We appreciate Jake’s ability to provide entertaining and informative year-round content for our fans; we look forward to his coverage of Detroit basketball.”  In addition to being responsible for day-to-day network operations, Chapman will host the team’s pre-game and post-game shows, as well as various other programming. He begins his new assignment in three weeks (8/6).

scott&br poster‘The Mighty 1090’ San Diego’s Scott Kaplan and Billy Ray Smith Team with Fox Sports San Diego for TV Special.  The afternoon drive duo of Scott Kaplan (right) and Billy Ray Smith (left) – “Scott & BR,” on Broadcasting Company of the Americas-operated XEPRS, San Diego “The Mighty 1090” is working with Fox Sports San Diego on a seven-part TV series that will begin airing on Tuesday, July 22.  The series is being filmed at the Fox Sports San Diego studios and will feature athletes and sports celebrities being interviewed by Kaplan and Smith as well as segments with other San Diego sports reporters. “The Mighty 1090” programming and operations manager Mike Shepard comments, “I am thrilled to partner with Fox Sports San Diego on this special series.  The exclusive ‘Scott & BR’ content created specifically for the network is an exciting venture that will bring San Diego sports fans something they’ve never had before.”

frischpatOdds & Sods.  Congratulations are in order for Pat Frisch, AM operations manager at Cumulus Media’s Albuquerque cluster, who this week is celebrating his 15th anniversary with the station group.  Frisch is ops manager for news/talk giant KKOB and sports talker KNML “610 The Sports Animal.”…..In celebration of its three-year anniversary, the Yahoo! Sports Radio is broadcasting live from Las Vegas beginning Monday, July 21.  Dubbed, “Super Week,” the network says the broadcasts will emanate “from Lagasse’s Stadium at the Palazzo Hotel and Casino with more than 80 hours of live programming packed with superstar guestsyahoosportsradiologo including Mike Tyson, Dana White, Stephen Curry and more.”  Hosts taking part in the Las Vegas broadcasts include: Steve Czaban, Travis Rodgers, Geoff Ketchum, John Granato & Sean Salisbury, Ken Thomson, and Peter Brown.  Yahoo! Sports Radio CEO David Gow states, “This is a great opportunity to spotlight our entire lineup.  We’re thrilled to be partnered with the Venetian and Palazzo and it’s truly an honor to broadcast from the magnificent Lagasse’s Stadium.”…..Entercom’s WWKB, Buffalo is the new flagship for University of Buffalo football and men’s basketball play-by-play.  The school’s games return to WWKB after being heard on Cumulus Media’s crosstown WHLD “Sports Radio 1270 The Fan.”

hayeshunterNAB Hands Hayes Marconi Award Performance Duties. Louisiana-born, Nashville-based, country songwriter/artist, multi-instrumentalist Hunter Hayes has been selected to entertain at the NAB‘s Marconi Radio Awards dinner September 11 in Indianapolis.  According to NAB executive vice president of radio John David, “Hunter Hayes is a talented musician, whose performance will contribute to a memorable 25th NAB Marconi Radio Awards dinner.  Atlantic Records and Warner Music Nashville connected us so Hunter can join radio in saluting the Marconi nominees and winners.”  Hayes’ platinum-selling, self-titled debut album was released on Atlantic Records three years ago.  Among his accomplishments are three number one singles: “Wanted,” “Somebody’s Heartbreak,” and “I Want Crazy.”  Established in 1989, the Marconi Radio Awards – named after inventor/Nobel prizewinner Guglielmo Marconi – recognize stations and individuals for excellence in 21 categories.  This year’s Radio Show (9/10 – 12) is produced by the NAB and the Radio Advertising Bureau (RAB).

ingrahamlauraTALKERS Weekly Affiliate Roundup.  Joining the lineup at KWTO-AM, Springfield, Missouri, is the Courtside Entertainment Group-syndicated Laura Ingraham show which is being heard from 9:00 am to 10:00 am and from 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm…..KYDT, Sundance, Wyoming adds the nighttime edition of the GCN-syndicated “Freedom Feens” show featuring Michael W. Dean.

Child Immigration Crisis Tops Talkers TenTM for Second Straight Week.  The influx of child illegal immigrants in the Southwest and the political issues surrounding the problem was the most-talked-about story on news/talk radio during the week of July 14 – 18, landing atop the Talkers TenTM for the second week in a row.  At #2 this week was the Israel-Hamas violence.  Following at #3 was the ISIS campaign in Iraq and Syria and the shooting down of the Malaysia Airlines plane over the Ukraine came in at #4.  The Talkers TenTM is a weekly chart of the top stories and people discussed on news/talk radio during the week and is the result of ongoing research from TALKERS.  It is published every Friday at Talkers.com.  View this week’s entire chart here.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

| December 11, 2012

Holland Cooke: Start Your Own Media Station.  Noted radio consultant and TALKERS columnist Holland Cooke says getting laid off during this year’s pre-Christmas industry bloodbath, though painful and scary, might not be the worst thing that can happen to enterprising broadcasters.  In a boldly worded opinion piece, the forward-thinking programming advisor connects numerous dots and cites fascinating examples painting a positive picture of just how much opportunity now exists in the digital world for radio people daring enough to go “stickless.”  He points to a number of telling signs in the changes in our culture – such as Larry King’s new online show being listed in a larger font on the USA Today television listings page than his former home, CNN.   Cooke writes, “Anyone who uses Twitter online can click-to-listen.  Those who Tweet on smartphones or iPad simply touch-to-listen.  Voila!  You’re in-the-pocket, where AM/FM radio used to be.” Read his piece here.

Rumors of Format Change at WTKK, Boston Rampant.  The Boston media is all over the rumors that Greater Media will flip the news/talk station to a different, music-based format in the near future.  The local media picked up on domain name registrations such as 969BostonsBeat.com, 969TheBeat.com, and Power969.com.  The Boston Herald speculates the change is coming because “’toxic’ all-talk formats aren’t attracting enough younger listeners.”  Greater Media spokesperson Heidi Raphael states, “We deal in a business of attitudes and being responsive to the preferences of our audiences and the needs of our advertisers and communities.  We are continually exploring our options, looking for ways to improve our product and brands.  No decisions have been made on any changes to the format.”  Radio operators register domain names that go unused frequently so the actions by Greater Media don’t necessarily mean a change is coming but it certainly means the company is considering it.

Dave Ramsey Changes Affiliates in Home Town of Nashville; Jumps from WWTN to Sports WPRT.  The nationally syndicated Dave Ramsey show will move to Cromwell Radio Group’s sports talk WPRT “102.5 FM The Game” beginning January 1.  Ramsey’s program has aired on Cumulus Media’s WWTN, Nashville since the program debuted in the early 1990s.  Ramsey states, “After 20 years on WWTN it is very difficult to leave.  Unfortunately, we couldn’t come to terms with Cumulus on a simple renewal agreement.  There are a lot of great people at WWTN and we’ll miss them.  But we’re excited to have the opportunity to work with an independent radio station owner the caliber of Bud Walters.”  It appears as though the move is being precipitated by Cumulus’ desire to give its own talk programs more exposure – in this case, giving Mike Huckabee a full three hours on WWTN.  The new schedule at WWTN puts Huckabee on live from 12:00 noon to 3:00 pm and allows Phil Valentine a 3:00 pm start to his PM drive show.  At the same time, Cumulus announces its newly acquired Michael Savage will air live from 10:00 pm to 1:00 am.  Cumulus Nashville market manager Mike Carpenter states, “We believe in the Mike Huckabee show and anticipate that this change will accelerate the governor’s popularity in Nashville.  Mike is a man of such character that we feel our clients will appreciate the opportunity to make him a key part of their marketing plans.  His on-air interest in music expands our talk repertoire and will play extremely well in a city where the music industry is the number three employer.  As for Savage, we assure you that a large number of our listeners will be happy to learn that their pleas have been heard and that Michael Savage is back on in Nashville.”

FCC Approves Transfer of WFAN-FM, New York to CBS Radio.  The $75 million deal that sends Merlin Media’s former WRXP, New York to CBS Radio as WFAN-FM, New York is approved by the Federal Communications Commission.  The station changed its call letters to WFAN-FM and CBS began operating it under an LMA on November 1 simulcasting sports talk WFAN-AM on the signal.

More on Changes at XEPRS, San Diego.  Yesterday, TALKERS reported sports talk XEPRS, San Diego “XX1090” let morning hosts Dave Palet and Jeff Dotseth go.  But now we’ve learned more as midday hosts Josh Rosenberg and Charod Williams have also been let go.  Lee “Hacksaw” Hamilton is now on mornings and the San Diego Union-Tribune is reporting that former morning hosts Scott Kaplan and Billy Ray Smith will return to the station in AM drive soon and Darren Smith will move to the 12:00 noon to 3:00 pm slot.  Kaplan and B.R. (Smith), who were fired after Kaplan made disparaging comments about a female sportscaster, have been hosting the San Diego Union-Tribune’s online TV morning show and, according to the report, would continue in that role.

Dave Wheaton Exits WOWO-AM/FM, Fort Wayne.  As tipped by Indiana Radio Watch’s Blaine Thompson, news director Dave Wheaton leaves his position at Federated Media’s WOWO-AM/FM, Fort Wayne to take the assignment editor post at Granite Broadcasting’s WPTA-TV, Fort Wayne (channel 21) and WISE-TV, Fort Wayne (channel 33).

Envision Radio Network Names Paul Harris “America Weekend” Host.  Talk radio pro Paul Harris is named the host of the new “America Weekend” program from Envision Radio Networks.  Executive producer Kipper KcGee says, “I’m thrilled to be working with Paul again.  We will be announcing the remainder of the ‘America Weekend’ lineup in coming weeks, and look forward to demonstrating that news/talk radio can enjoy weekend ratings and revenues!”  McGee worked with Harris in St. Louis and at WLS, Chicago.  Harris states, “I’m excited about launching ‘America Weekend’ to give both affiliates and listeners something more compelling, with great stories, interesting interviews, and my own perspective on what’s happening.”

Clear Channel Donates WDTW, Detroit to the Minority Media and Communications Council.  Clear Channel Media and Entertainment is donating progressive talk outlet WDTW, Detroit – a 5,000-watt Class B signal – to the MMTC under the Clear Channel-MMTC Ownership Diversity Initiative.  Clear Channel CEO and chairman John Hogan states, “We applaud MMTC for creating a program that helps minority broadcasters develop the skills and experience necessary to become successful broadcasters.  We’re pleased that the donation of these resources will give the opportunity for enthusiastic new entrepreneurs to own and operate their own radio station.”

Main Street Radio Network Launches New Weekly Program.  “The RichLife Show” with host Beau Henderson is a weekly one-hour program that, according to syndicator Main Street Radio Network, is “a fast-paced hour with a BIG mission to help listeners live healthy, wealthy, fulfilled lives on purpose by combining a highly engaging mix of education, entertainment, inspiration, and motivation.  The format of the show is financial Q&A, discussion around listeners’ biggest questions and concerns, and relevant expert interviews.”  Henderson is a senior financial advisor, Master Certified Success Coach, and Certified Master Behavioral Analyst and author of the book, The RichLife – Ten Investments For True Wealth.  Main Street president Jane Silk says, “We know ‘The RichLife Show’ will be a great addition to our current shows and our rapidly growing radio network.  Beau Henderson is a caring, honest person who truly has the listener’s best interest in mind.  Beau will cover a variety of topics such as all aspects of living rich: money, health, meaningful relationships, and living a fulfilled life of purpose.  Beau and RichLife advisors have built an online community through a weekly newsletter and social media that now exceeds 35,000 committed to living their definition of a RichLife.”

KGO, San Francisco Partners with Good News in Oakland for News Feature.  Cumulus Media San Francisco news/talker KGO announces a partnership with internet media outlet Good News in Oakland to create a feature that “will highlight a person or organization in Oakland that has made a difference in creating a positive image for the East Bay’s largest city.”  Good News in Oakland is described as an “internet-based renewable psychological socially responsible environmentally focused media outlet.”  Stories will be produced by KGO reporter Tihanna McCleese and Good News in Oakland founder Sean Kennedy.  KGO program director Paul Hosley states, “We’re thrilled to enter into this partnership with Good News in Oakland. This collaboration will give KGO listeners an opportunity to hear about the positive side of the city…stories that have not been told before.”  Features will air at 6:46 am, 1:46 pm, and 5:46 pm on Mondays and Wednesdays.

WNYM, New York Begins Picture Caption Contest for Lunch with Sliwa & Lichtman.  Salem Communications-owned WNYM, New York’s PM drive team of Curtis Sliwa and Jeffrey Lichtman are enjoying their new street-level studio with the giant display window at the Hotel Pennsylvania on 7th Avenue.  The station and hotel management say they are getting such a buzz from New Yorkers about the setup that they’re beginning a photo caption contest to capitalize on the publicity.  WNYM is asking fans to take a picture of Sliwa and Lichtman broadcasting, give it a caption and post it via Twitter or Instagram or send it to the station via email.  First prize is lunch with Sliwa and Lichtman.  Other prizes include Broadway show tix, restaurant deals and more.  WNYM general manager Sean O’Neill states, “The iconic Hotel Pennsylvania with Curtis Sliwa and Jeffrey Lichtman broadcasting live in the hub of midtown Manhattan is an extraordinary opportunity to personalize the radio experience in the digital age.  Hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers walk through this block daily and now have the opportunity to connect face to face with their favorite radio personalities.”

Quentin Tarantino Entertains Live Audience at SiriusXM.  As part of the “Town Hall Series” on SiriusXM, noted filmmaker Quentin Tarantino (l) was interviewed by Village Voice film critic Scott Foundas (r) before an intimate, live studio audience.  Tarantino, who also took questions from the crowd, discussed his new film “Django Unchained” and told stories about his career as a film director.  Photo Credit: Kevin Mazur / WireImage for SiriusXM.

ESPN Radio Broadcasts 24 College Bowl Games.  The college football bowl season will bring plenty of play-by-play to ESPN Radio affiliates as the sports media giant announces plans to broadcast 24 bowl games.  Beginning with the Gildan New Mexico Bowl on December 15 and wrapping up with the National Championship game between Notre Dame and Alabama in Miami on January 7, ESPN Radio’s coverage will span 16 days.  David Norrie and Bill Rosinski will call five of the games beginning with the S.D. County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl on December 20.  Additionally, both the “Mike & Mike in the Morning” and “SVP & Russillo” programs will originate from South Florida on Monday and Tuesday, January 7 and 8.

Lotus Communications’ ‘SuperGol’ Soccer Show Scores Affiliates.  The Spanish-language soccer show “SuperGol” recently snagged its 25th affiliate for the one-hour program targeted to younger Hispanic men.  The show airs live from 4:00 pm to 5:00 pm PT and is hosted by Halim Zadat and Erika Garza.  The show is produced by Lotus’ KWKW, Los Angeles and station president James Kalmenson says, “The young US-born Latino is a growing segment of the sports audience that’s responding extremely well to the program.  Latinos of all generations are avid soccer fans, making the soccer-themed talk show an ideal platform for younger audiences while maintaining the traditional sports target of men 25-54.”

Gow Broadcasting Acquires Sports Flash Radio Network.  The service that specializes in sports updates is acquired by Gow Communications, the company that is operating Yahoo! Sports Radio.  Gow announces at the same time that its affiliate base has grown to more than 360 stations.  David Gow states, “We are really pleased with the ongoing expansion of our affiliate base.  The acquisition of the Sports Flash Radio Network extends our reach to both sports-format and non-sports-format stations.  And the additions of new shows we have introduced over the past year have enabled us to achieve industry-leading growth.”

‘Fiscal Cliff’ Battle, Looming ObamaCare Costs, Michigan Right-to-Work Bill Controversy, Hillary in 2016, and Aussie DJ Prank Fallout Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (12/10).  The GOP versus Obama fight in Washington over avoiding the “fiscal cliff”; the costs associated with ObamaCare that will begin to take effect in 2013; the battle in Michigan over the union-busting right-to-work bill; the proposition Hillary Clinton will run for president in 2016; and the fallout after the Australian DJ prank call to Kate Middleton’s hospital in London were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

| July 24, 2012

Arbitrator Rules in Favor of Former XEPRS, San Diego Hosts Scott Kaplan and Billy Ray Smith.  Sports talk hosts Scott Kaplan and Billy Ray Smith were fired by XEPRS, San Diego – XX Sports Radio 1090 – in February after Kaplan made derogatory comments about the appearance of Mountain West TV Network sports personality Andrea Lloyd.  Kaplan and Smith contended they were let go in violation of their contract which outlined a process by which the station was to address content issues in case of a disagreement.  An arbitrator – retired Superior Court Judge Linda Quinn ruled in the hosts’ favor and has awarded the two more than $490,000 in damages based on their respective salaries, commissions, endorsements and incentives as provided by their contracts.  U-T San Diego (for which Kaplan now works co-hosting an online TV show called “Scott, B.R. + Amber”) reports Kaplan and Smith feel vindicated with Kaplan stating, “I feel vindicated.  They breached the contract.  I knew that from the beginning.  There was a lot of embarrassment that came with the termination.  I spent 11 great years on the radio…I loved what I did and I loved who I worked for.”  XEPRS has not paid the duo yet and has filed a motion asking Quinn to reconsider her decision.

NPR Hires Lobbying Firm to Fight GOP Effort to Defund CFPB.  Congressional Republicans are again organizing efforts to defund the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and NPR is hiring the lobbying firm Navigators Global to help shut that down.  The Hill reports NPR spokesperson Dana Rehm says that the organization is a content provider but is also a trade organization representing member stations.  “It is part of our mission to represent the interests of NPR member stations to Congress, executive, regulatory and judicial bodies.  At a time when the federal government is running a large deficit, every program and function of the government deserves to be scrutinized, and a review of federal funding to public broadcasting is fair and to be expected.”  Rehm says the firm’s job is to explain “how the federal investment in public radio stations and larger public broadcasting system provides one of the most effective returns of any program authorized by Congress.”

Talk Radio Rises to the Occasion in Covering Aurora Massacre Aftermath.  The natural progression of the analysis and coverage of the killing of 12 and wounding of dozens of others at the Aurora, Colorado premiere of “Dark Knight Rises” continues and talk radio is rising to the occasion to serve its listeners with compelling and responsible discussion.  Examples of talk outlets rising to a high level of performance through the use of experts in the fields of psychology, law enforcement, media violence, gun control and more are being reported to TALKERS from all over the country.  Here two examples of similar coverage:  Compass Media Networks nationally syndicated talk host Todd Schnitt featured an interview with shooting victim Pierce O’Farrill, who was hit three times by bullets from the shooter’s gun.  O’Farrill described live on the air the chilling events at the theater, his perspective on the gunman, the death penalty, and his visit with President ObamaXtreMedia president Kevin McCullough tells TALKERS several of his company’s programs – his own Kevin McCullough show, the Saturday evening “Baldwin/McCullough LIVE” broadcast  and the Sunday night Dani Johnson show spent the bulk of their collective platforms allowing hurting, confused and stunned listeners to respond to the attacks.  Actor Stephen Baldwin took time out from a publicity tour in neighboring Cheyenne, Wyoming (90 minutes from Aurora) to meet with those in Aurora whose lives have been touched by the shootings.  While there, CNN‘s Don Lemon asked Baldwin (see photo) to weigh in on his perspective of the events.  Baldwin told CNN, “It may be time for those of us in the Hollywood community to re-examine how we advance violence through films, television, and video games.  It also blows my mind that someone could purchase 6,000 rounds of ammo in 45 days.  I’m a gun enthusiast but a red flag should’ve gone off somewhere.”

Progressive Town Hall Forum in Seattle.  Premiere Networks syndicated talk host Randi Rhodes (center) was one of eight panelists who took part in “Showdown 2012: Recapturing Democracy,” a progressive town hall forum presented by Seattle’s Progressive Talk AM1090 (CBS Radio’s KPTK) at the ShoWare Center in Kent, Washington on Saturday, July 21.  Rhodes appeared on a panel focused on the evolving role citizens play in the political and public policy process, including strategies to protect our role in democracy and to build a better future for everyone.  Panelists in this picture are (from l-r): Congressman Jim McDermott, WYD Media talk host Thom Hartmann,  talk host Mike Papantonio, Compass Media Networks talk host Norman Goldman, Rhodes, talk host Sam Seder, talk host Ron Reagan, and panel moderator David Postman, former chief political reporter for the Seattle Times.

KESN, Dallas Renews Contract with Cowboys Great Drew Pearson.  ESPN O&O KESN, Dallas – ESPN Dallas 103.3 – announces it is renewing its deal with Dallas Cowboys great Drew Pearson for another season.  Under the terms of the contract, Pearson will join “Ben & Skin” co-hosts Ben Rogers & Jeff “Skin” Wade on Mondays from 11:00 am to 12:00 noon, do Friday call-ins to the “Galloway and Company” show, and co-host the “5th Quarter Cowboys” post-game show.  Pearson will act as the “go-to guy” for any breaking Cowboys or NFL news, and do a weekly video segment with “Galloway and Company.”  Pearson states, “I am very happy and excited to be joining the ESPN Radio team for my third season as Cowboys/NFL analyst.  My role with ESPN provides a platform for me to express my sports opinions and it also allows me the opportunity to continue my association with the ‘Worldwide Leader in Sports’ – ESPN – which to me is priceless.”

Old Friends.  Dial Global nationally syndicated talk host Dennis Miller (r) poses for a shot with former “Saturday Night Live” cast member and co-star David Spade (c) and show promoter Bill Blumenreich (l) at Miller’s recent live concert at Boston’s Wilbur Theater.  Spade snuck into the theater and found his way to Miller’s dressing room where they chatted and caught up.

Fox Sports Radio and Yardbarker Enhance Content Relationship.  The latter is described by Fox Sports Radio as a sports opinion site and blog network.  It’s a property of Fox Sports Interactive Media and now it and Fox Sports Radio Network will begin working together more closely beginning with incorporating FSRN’s “Loose Cannons” into Yardbarker’s content.  FSRN states “‘Loose Cannons’ will feature a daily segment with co-hosts Pat O’Brien, Steve Hartman and Vic ‘The Brick’ Jacobs as they take listeners into O’Brien’s ‘backyard’ for all the dirt from Yardbarker.  Fox Sports Radio will soon add similar segments across other network programs.  In addition, Yardbarker will feature select content from Fox Sports Radio on its website and social media platforms.”  Yardbarker VP of operations Jack Kloster states, “Yardbarker is incredibly excited to partner with Fox Sports Radio and to introduce our content to the loyal listeners of ‘Loose Cannons.’  The partnership is a natural fit.  Our content is inherently conversational and Fox Sports Radio is home base for sports conversation.”

Geoff Neuhoff Passes Away at Age 59.  Neuhoff Communications president and CEO Geoff Neuhoff died Sunday after falling ill suddenly on Saturday.  Neuhoff owned and operated stations in rural Illinois including clusters in Springfield and Decatur.  The company operated news/talk WSOY, Decatur and sports talk WFMB, Springfield.  Neuhoff COO Mike Hulvey tells the State Journal-Register, “Geoff Neuhoff was a giant among small- and medium-market broadcasters.  Geoff demanded from all of us a dedication of greatness and excellence no matter the market size or the power of the station.  Geoff believed strongly that innovation was the way forward and he embraced new technologies with enthusiasm.  He will be missed by his team, but the legacy he leaves behind will last for years to come.”  Neuhoff is survived by his wife and three children.

Aurora Movie Theater Massacre, Penn State Penalties, Syria Instability, and European Debt Worries/Financial Markets Activities Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (7/23).  The aftermath of the massacre at the “Dark Knight Rises” showing in Aurora, Colorado; the severe penalties levied against Penn State in the Jerry Sandusky child abuse scandal; Syria’s political instability and threat to use weapons of mass destruction; and ongoing concerns over the debt of some European nations and the effect on world financial markets were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

| June 13, 2012

10 Things You Need to Know About Live Endorsements.  The live endorsement is one of the most powerful advertising vehicles talk radio has to offer. But KTRH, Houston talk show host and TALKERS Heavy Hundred member Michael Berry writes that advertisers and sales personnel too often force the talent into making mistakes that undermine its effectiveness. For starters, Berry says that forcing the talent to work with a script takes away from his or her ability to put the message in unique terms. The best way is to have the talent use the good or service and like it. “We can sell what we like because then it’s not ‘selling.’ It’s simply sharing what we like, and it’s what we do. Make sure your endorser understands you, the individual who owns the business.” Read Michael Berry’s 10 points about live endorsements here.

WYD Media Management Announces Formation of Sister Firm for Affiliate Sales and Marketing.  WYD Media founder Ron Hartenbaum states the formation of WYM Media Management LLC will serve the purpose of handling the affiliate marketing strategies for its planned expansion of new talk programming. “WYM is a natural expansion of the business. WYD manages and produces programming, while WYM will focus on multiple platform distribution of that product.” Industry pro Liz Laud joins the company as the first affiliate sales and marketing associate. Hartenbaum says, “Liz is an accomplished industry veteran whose track record from Westwood One, Jones Radio and Dial Global speaks for itself. We are absolutely ecstatic with Liz on the team as WYM’s first affiliate sales & marketing associate.” WYD Media Management has been a key figure in the growth of talk shows such as the “The Stephanie Miller Show,” “The Thom Hartmann Program” and “The Michael Smerconish Show.” Ron Hartenbaum has also worked with numerous highly successful talk talent including Rush Limbaugh, Dennis Prager, Neal Boortz, Mike Malloy, Clark Howard, Mike Gallagher, and “Ring of Fire” with Sam Seder, Mike Papantonio and Robert Kennedy Jr. WYM Media will be based in New York and Los Angeles and is expected to announce new programming shortly. Liz Laud says, “This is a wonderful opportunity to participate in new, fun, informative, and entertaining long form programming and to participate in the growth of WYD as a key player in national radio programming.” She can be contacted at Lizlaud@mac.com or 310-625-9753.

Former San Diego Sports Talk Host Scott Kaplan Joins U-T San Diego TV Initiative.  The San Diego newspaper U-T San Diego – formerly known as the Union-Tribune – is developing TV programming for cable and the web and one of its first efforts is a roundtable program designed to discuss San Diego topics. Scott Kaplan (pictured here at left), who most recently worked hosting the AM drive sports talk show at XEPRS, San Diego, is part of the cast alongside Amber Mesker (c) and Billy Ray Smith (r). U-T San Diego CEO John Lynch is quoted in the U-T saying, “We’re going to be, every moment of the day, talking about San Diego. We realize that we have a very valuable asset and that is unique, exclusive content that is hyper-local and all about San Diego — from sports to business to the news.” U-T San Diego was purchased by hotelier Doug Manchester in November of 2011 and so far has spent $3 million constructing a professional studio and hiring about a dozen of the 50 people it will need to operate the station.

Mike Scott Named OM/PD at WCAR, Detroit.  Mike Scott previously served as assistant program director and midday host at CBS Radio‘s country WYCD-FM, Detroit. He recently left the market to take the programmer’s post at KZKX-FM, Lincoln, Nebraska but exited that position after just four months. Now, he returns to the Motor City market as operations manager and program director of Birach Broadcasting‘s sports talk WCAR, Livonia, Michigan.

Comrex Corporation’s STAC VIP Gains Skype Certification; Paves Way for Hi-Fi Skype Calls on Talk Radio.  The engineers at Comrex Corporation are celebrating the fact that their Comrex STAC VIP VoIP Call Management Systems has passed qualification by Skype to allow it to process Skype calls alongside all other calls for radio call-in shows. This certification means the STAC VIP meets the guidelines to be called “Plugged into Skype” and can carry the Skype logo. What it means to radio talk shows is the ability to have one unit that processes calls from numerous formats – including Legacy POTS, ISDN, VoIP, IP-based PBX systems and now Skype – into the call screener and control unit and onto the radio. Skype provides “studio quality” sound for users. Comrex technical director Tom Hartnett states, “Skype support was an important factor in development of the VIP product. Skype, by its nature, carries very high-fidelity audio when being used between Skype clients. Skype support means stations that use STAC-VIP for their call-ins can take wideband calls from anyone who has Skype installed on their PC or smartphone.”

Talk Radio Legend Barry Farber Featured on TALKERS TV.  Pioneering talk radio host Barry Farber – currently heard in national syndication via Talk Radio Network and CRN Digital Talk – was honored at the recent New York City edition of the TALKERS New Media Seminar on Thursday, June 7 with a “Lifetime Achievement Award.” During the event, Farber found time to sit down in front of the Talkers camera and speak about his craft and his career. View the video in the TALKERS TV box on this page.

Odds ‘n’ Sods.  Independently syndicated talk show host Leslie Marshall is named one of the Top 50 Fabulous Women by Pasadena, California’s THE Magazine. The publication recognizes Marshall for her charity work to build schools and provide education, especially for girls in Islamic countries such as Pakistan, through various charities such as “Shine For Humanity.” She was also recognized for using her talk show to bring people together on issues and to raise awareness of human suffering worldwide in order to change it…..KNX, Los Angeles continues its Business Breakfast series with a June 22 event dedicated to creating a winning culture in the workplace. “KNX Business Hour” host Frank Motek moderates a discussion that includes: Chester Elton, co-author of the New York Times bestseller All In; G.J. Hart, the chief executive officer and president of California Pizza Kitchen; Jodi Walker, president of Success Alliances; and Yvonne Trupiano, director of talent acquisitions at Avis Budget Group…..Michigan-based talk host Michael Patrick Shiels broadcasts his morning drive radio and TV show (heard on WDTW, Detroit; WTKG, Grand Rapids; and seen on Fox 47 TV in Lansing) from Kennebunkport, Maine today, the day after former President George H.W. Bush‘s 88th birthday party. Shiels will interview Bush family and friends at the Cape Arundel Golf Club where the former president’s charity is holding a golf outing…..Tampa-based talk host Bubba the Love Sponge‘s charitable foundation is assisting local mother Christine Dean in paying for her trip to Los Angeles this summer to take part in a fundraiser for St. Baldrick’s Children’s Cancer Research. Gary Kompothecras – founder of the attorney and doctor referral service 1-800-ASK-GARY – heard Dean on Bubba’s program talking about her child’s leukemia diagnosis and her desire to go to L.A. for the event. He donated the $1,000 necessary to make the trip.

Sports Talker Dan Sileo Addresses Power of the NFL in Shaping its Coverage. WQAM, Miami afternoon drive talk host Dan Sileo writes about the problem sports talk hosts – and sports journalists – face covering the mighty National Football League, especially in light of controversies such as the recent Saints bounty case in which several players received suspensions. Read his column here.

Attorney General Eric Holder Under Fire, 2012 Presidential Race, Jerry Sandusky Trial, Texas Beating Death and Los Angeles Kings Win Stanley Cup Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (6/12).  Republican scrutiny of Attorney General Eric Holder in connection with the ‘Fast and Furious’ program; the 2012 presidential campaign; testimony from alleged victims in the Jerry Sandusky case; the beating death of an alleged child molester in Texas; and the Los Angeles Kings’ first franchise Stanley Cup were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday according to ongoing research from TALKERS.

Beasley Las Vegas Helps Raise $165k for Children’s Miracle Network.  That’s KDWN, Las Vegas-based talk host and physician Dr. Daliah Wachs (r) appearing at the recent radiothon interviewing an unnamed guest. Dr. Wachs reports to TALKERS that Beasley Broadcast Group‘s Las Vegas stations partnered with St. Rose Dominican Hospitals for the cause and brought in $165,000 for the Children’s Miracle Networka foundation raising money for specialized medical equipment, family needs, and more for pediatric patients.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

| February 9, 2012

Cumulus Media Networks to Syndicate Daily Mike Huckabee Talk Show in Same Time Slot as Rush Limbaugh.  Former Arkansas Governor and presidential candidate Mike Huckabee has been producing a daily feature for Cumulus Media Networks and hosting his weekend show on Fox News Channel since shortly after the 2008 presidential race.  Now CMN decides to develop a three-hour talk show for Huckabee – based out of Florida – airing live from 12:00 noon to 3:00 pm ET and beginning April 2.  Already, industry watchers are viewing the move as Cumulus “taking on” Premiere Networks’ syndication dominance in the time slot with Limbaugh while Cumulus COO John Dickey tells The New York Times that it is positioning the show as an alternative to Limbaugh.  Huckabee himself defers to Limbaugh’s success telling Times writer Brian Stelter he doesn’t feel like a competitor, “He’s going to have an audience that will be very loyal and has been for over 20 years.  I doubt that will change.”  Within the industry, the big question is will Cumulus push Huckabee onto its news/talk stations that currently carry Limbaugh, especially at such major market stations as WABC, New York; WLS, Chicago; WJR Detroit; WBAP-AM/FM, Dallas and WMAL-AM/FM, Washington?  All are markets where Premiere parent Clear Channel Media and Entertainment doesn’t have a news/talk outlet (or a strong-performing talk outlet) on which to move Limbaugh.  Huckabee is a good broadcaster with a personality all his own, great name recognition and is adept at taking on subjects outside the realm of politics.  He’s likeable and smart.  But Limbaugh has performed well for the aforementioned stations and it would be a gamble to make a change of such significance.  Perhaps far more concerned than Premiere are local talk hosts at the Cumulus stations not mentioned above who understand Cumulus is not making this move without a plan to roll Huckabee out onto as many of its O&Os as possible.

Sports Talk Host Scott Kaplan Admits Fault in Comments About Female Broadcaster.  Former XEPRS, San Diego morning drive talk host Scott Kaplan tells the San Diego Union Tribune that he needs to apologize to Mountain West sports broadcaster Andrea Lloyd for comments he made about her appearance that may have led to his and co-host Billy Ray Smith’s departure from the station.  Kaplan called Lloyd a “beast” and a “sasquatch of a woman” on the program and was let go from the station more than a week later.  Broadcast Company of the America’s VP/GM Tex Meyer had told the Union Tribune he’d spoken with Kaplan in the past about similar issues.  But Kaplan’s comments to NBC San Diego prior to being fired strike at the heart of the issue for edgy, sports talk hosts trying to reach a younger, male demo when he stated, “I don’t apologize for the fact that we’re a guy show, a locker-room kind of show.  There’s no apology for that.  This is what we do.”  The reality is that radio hosts targeting young men often comment on the appearances of women – often positively, but sometimes not.  It’s certainly the right of any operator to tolerate it or not but points to the fine line such hosts must walk in creating an edgy show and being savvy enough to realize who is “fair game” and who the public will perceive as an innocent undeserving of such criticism.  As for Kaplan, he says he can’t talk about his actual firing but tells the paper he doesn’t believe he was validly terminated from the station.

CNN Suspends Roland Martin for Super Bowl Tweets.  Numerous media reports indicate CNN is suspending commentator Roland Martin for tweets he sent during the Super Bowl – one of which in response to the David Beckham H&M underwear ad is being perceived by gay rights activists to have been homophobic.  In the tweet, Martin wrote, “If a dude at your Super Bowl party is hyped about David Beckham’s H&M underwear ad, smack the ish out of him! #superbowl” Martin responded that he was only making fun of soccer.  The Washington Post reports CNN issued the following statement about Martin’s status: “Roland Martin’s tweets were regrettable and offensive.  Language that demeans is inconsistent with the values and culture of our organization, and is not tolerated.  We have been giving careful consideration to this matter, and Roland will not be appearing on our air for the time being.”  TALKERS recently addressed the issue of talent using social media in a feature piece titled, “Social Media: Handle with Care.”  If you haven’t read it yet, check it out here.

WTKK-FM, Boston Talk Host Michael Graham Sponsors Candidate’s School.  Local talk show host Michael Graham broadcasts on Greater Media’s WTKK-FM, Boston but he’s also an experienced GOP consultant.  Last night, Graham sponsored a non-partisan workshop at the Café Escadrille in suburban Boston in which Republican, Democratic and independent political professionals donated their time to help educate and train private citizens on becoming candidates in the 2012 election and beyond.  Graham says of the event, “We’re answering the question I’ve been asked thousands of times: ‘What can I do to make a difference?’  Here’s what you can do: Run.”  This is not Graham’s first workshop.  Since 2010 more than 500 New Englanders have attended Graham’s Candidate’s School.

Former Blue Star Media Group Exec “Doesn’t Own Feature Concepts.”  That’s the position of Blue Star Media Group president and CEO Michael Metter after former EVP Jeff Weber sent out an industry-wide press release on 2/7 accusing – though not by name – Blue Star’s Business TalkRadio Network and Lifestyle TalkRadio Network of not having the rights to a news feature and a music history vignette.  In the release, Weber references the music vignette “Pop Quiz” and the news feature “Heard Around Town” which he says are still available through his company, Jeff Weber Marketing.  Metter tells TALKERS when Weber left the company in December he asked that his name and voice be removed from all Blue Star content and the company complied.  Metter says his new features – “Heard Across America with Wendy Lowy Sloane” and “Rhythm & Pop with Tony Legg” – are “totally different names with the new content written by the talent.  These concepts are as old as radio itself.  What ownership does he have?”

Maryland Brewer Makes Beer to Honor the Late Ron Smith; Proceeds Benefit Cancer Research.  Brewer Jay Lampart at Johansson’s Dining House in Westminster, Maryland has created a beer call Reason Saison to honor the late WBAL, Baltimore talk host Ron Smith.  Lampart tells WBAL, “Ron has been part of my ride home since 9/11, which was also the time I moved to Maryland.  I learned a lot about Maryland politics and critical thinking from Ron.”  Lampart says proceeds from the brew will go to the Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center where Smith was treated for pancreatic cancer.  It’ll remain on sale at the restaurant through the end of the month or until supplies run out.  The name of the beer stems from Smith’s calling himself the “voice of reason” combined with the Belgian style of beer known as saison.

Deer Creek’s KCKS-FM, Chico, California Simulcasts Sports AM.  KEWE, Chico is Deer Creek’s “Fox Sports Radio 1340” and after a year of trying a CHR music format, the station returns being a simulcast for the company’s sports talk outlet.  Although San Francisco and Sacramento AMs get into the market, Chico doesn’t have another local sports talk outlet.

Syrian Violence Escalates, GOP Primary Race/2012 Presidential Election, Iran Nuclear Ambitions, and L.A. School Sex Abuse Case Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (2/8).  The international community’s growing conflict over the escalating violence in Syria; Rick Santorum’s victories complicating the GOP primary race and the beginning of President Obama’s campaign; Iran’s nuclear ambitions and the Los Angeles school sex abuse case were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

| February 7, 2012

Cumulus Media CEO Lew Dickey Addresses “Inherently Inefficient” Nature of Old-Line Media Business Model in Bain Capital News Story.  The chief executive officer of the second largest radio station operator in America is one of several Atlanta-based business executives to speak to the Atlanta Journal Constitution about his business and the role private equity firm Bain Capital played in its progress.  The piece ran Sunday (2/5) online and in print and was written from the perspective of giving insight into Bain Capital – the company formerly run by presidential candidate Mitt Romney.  However it also probes the nature of corporate radio as it rides the rough surf of an economic downturn and a dramatically changing media business – complete with layoffs and job consolidation.  The story notes Cumulus CFO Joseph Hannan explained to investors at a recent conference that they had to “wholesale re-engineer the way these operations work” in order to cut costs and that the company learned this process while working with the private equity firms.  Hannan said the company was able to cut $70 million in costs.  Lew Dickey tells the AJC the business has to work that way to survive.  He says old-line media companies have become “inherently inefficient.  We run the business as efficiently as technology permits us to do.”  Interestingly, Bain Capital took a loss on its involvement with Cumulus.  Cumulus ended up buying out Bain and the other private equity partners.  It worked with other private equity firms to engineer the Citadel Broadcasting deal and it remains to be seen whether that will turn out to be a wise investment for them or whether they will suffer the same fate as Bain.  Through it all, Dickey remains confident and tells the AJC he believes his company will add jobs – albeit in different sectors – during this year.  “By the end of the year, we’ll have a net increase in jobs. They’ll be different jobs.  That’s how business evolves.”

Exit of CBS Radio CHR Programmer and 92.3 Now PD Dom Theodore Fires Up Speculation About Sports or News Moving to the New York Signal.  There was big news in the CHR world yesterday as CBS Radio’s format captain and PD of 92.3 Now (WXRK-FM, New York) Dom Theodore left the building.  For those awaiting the (some say) way overdue addition of an FM signal for sports talk WFAN, this move gives them plenty to talk about.  Still others believe one of CBS Radio’s all-newsers – WINS or WCBS – could end up with an FM simulcast.  Right now it’s all guesswork but rumors that the rest of the on-air staff at 92.3 Now may have received news of its imminent demise along with Theodore’s departure have the message boards in the Tri-State area red hot with chatter.

Courtside Entertainment Group Names Rich Rapiti Senior Director of Affiliate Relations.  Longtime affiliate relations pro Rich Rapiti is reunited with Westwood One founder Norm Pattiz in his new role as senior director of affiliate relations for Pattiz’s Courtside Entertainment Group.  Rapiti will be based in New York City.  Courtside president Bob Moore says, “Rich Rapiti is a unique guy.  He has worked in the radio business his entire adult life and has mastered the art of working with radio stations in providing quality programming.  We are extremely excited about having Rich on our team.”  Speaking about his new position, Rapiti states, “I am thrilled to be the newest member of the Courtside team.  Rarely does the opportunity occur where you can work with the likes of a Norm Pattiz and his executive team.”

XEPRS, San Diego Makes AM Drive Changes; Scott Kaplan Exits, Dave Palet and Jeff Dotseth In.  After 11 years at the station, morning drive host Scott Kaplan and co-host Billy Ray Smith are out as hosts of the program.  Station VP/GM Tex Meyer says in a press release the change was made “after very careful consideration and evaluation of several important factors.”  However, many San Diego media observers are saying Kaplan’s recent unflattering on-air comments about Mountain West broadcaster Andrea Lloyd put management over the top and forced its hand.  Broadcast Company of the Americas brings San Diego market veterans Dave Palet and Jeff Dotseth in to take over the morning drive show.

WGN, Chicago Holds “Cubs Song” Contest.  Musically inclined Chicago Cubs fans are being encouraged to write a tribute song to their favorite baseball team and have the chance for it to become part of Cubs radio broadcasts all season long.  Tribune Company’s WGN – flagship for Chicago Cubs baseball – will be the judge of the winning submission for this unique promotion.  Here are the rules: Write an original song about the Chicago Cubs and e-mail it as an .mp3 file attachment to cubssong@wgnradio.com by February 29, 2012.  The lyrics must mention the Cubs and WGN Radio, but may not mention names of individual players, coaches or Cubs management.  Songs longer than four minutes will be disqualified.  You must also include your name, address, daytime phone number, e-mail address, and age in the e-mail.  Entries on behalf of a group must provide the required information for each member of the group.  WGN will post up to 10 finalists on its website and give fans the chance to vote on the winner.  The writer/performer of the winning entry will have the chance to get the song recorded in a professional studio and perform it live during Jonathon Brandmeier’s Opening Day broadcast on WGN.

WBNS-FM, Columbus Debuts “Off-Season with Bobby Carpenter.”  The NFL season is over – more or less – until the draft in April and RadiOhio sports talker 97.1 The Fan (WBNS-FM) is taking advantage of the year-round interest in the National Football League by creating a weekly, Friday afternoon show co-hosted by former Ohio State standout and current Detroit Lions linebacker Bobby Carpenter and WBNS-TV’s Beau Bishop.  Director of programming and operations Jay Taylor announces the one-hour show airs from 12:00 noon to 1:00 pm featuring talk about the NFL, the upcoming draft and Buckeye football and debuts this Friday, February 10.

CNN Names Jim Acosta to National Political Correspondent Role.  The cable news channel announces Jim Acosta is promoted to national political correspondent where he’ll appear regularly on several CNN programs including “The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer” and “John King, USA,” according to TVWeek.  CNN SVP and Washington bureau chief Sam Feist states, “Jim has been an outstanding addition to the political team.  He has emerged as one of the key reporters on the campaign trail and his astute reporting skills will only help to position the network to dominate this important election cycle.”

CBS Radio Renews with MLB’s Phillies; Games to Air on WIP-FM.  CBS Radio’s news/talk WPHT, Philadelphia has been the longtime flagship for Philadelphia Phillies baseball and the company and team just struck a new multi-year deal to keep the team with CBS Philadelphia.  This season the games will also air on sister sports WIP’s new FM signal as well.  CBS Radio Philadelphia VP/market manager Marc Rayfield states, “It’s a very exciting time for WPHT and WIP, and this partnership with the Philadelphia Phillies only adds to the interest audiences have in these two leading radio stations.  We look forward to the future with the most thrilling team in baseball.”

Talk Host Steve Cochran Ready to Return to Action After Health Scare.  Chicago-based talk host Steve Cochran – who handles the afternoon program at Salem Communication’s WIND, Chicago and hosts the late morning program for KTRS, St. Louis (which is rerun in the evening) from his home in the Chicago area – took himself off the air last week and went to the hospital after feeling chest pains, according to Time Out Chicago’s Robert Feder.  Cochran underwent some tests and was prescribed medication and reports he hopes to be back on the radio soon.  Cochran tells Feder, “The doctor said I’ll be 125 percent, which is great news unless you really hate my show.”

More TV Work for TRN’s Phil Hendrie.  Los Angeles-based, nationally syndicated talk radio personality Phil Hendrie scored a recurring role on the hit Fox TV show “New Girl.”  Hendrie says, “The entire cast and crew is so hard working, gracious and welcoming.  It’s an honor to get to work with them.”  Last year, Hendrie taped an episode of the ABC-TV hit show “Modern Family” in which he plays the recurring character “Boots.”  That episode is to air soon.  Pictured here is the cast of “New Girl” – from left to  right: Max Greenfield, Lamorne Morris, Hannah Simone, Hendrie, Zooey Deschanel and Jake Johnson.

Romney Surges in GOP Primary, Super Bowl Aftermath, Syria Violence and Closure of U.S. Embassy and New Iran Sanctions Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (2/6).  Mitt Romney’s victory in Nevada over the weekend and his continuing lead over competitors, the aftermath of the Giants’ victory in Super Bowl XLVI, continuing violence in Syria and the U.S.’s closure of its embassy there and new sanctions levied against Iran were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.