Tag: "Suzanne Grimes"

Thursday, October 31, 2019

| October 31, 2019

Round Three of October PPM Ratings Released. The third of four rounds of October 2019 PPM ratings data from Nielsen Audio has been released for 12 markets including: Portland, Charlotte, San Antonio, Sacramento, Pittsburgh, Salt Lake City, Las Vegas, Orlando, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Kansas City, and Columbus. The October 2019 rating period covered September 12 to October 9.  Here are some of the ratings gains (6+) of note from this group of markets: Bonneville’s KSL-AM/FM, Salt Lake City puts up an astonishing 2.4 share increase from last month to finish at a 6.4 share and a #3 rank in the market; Alpha Media’s news/talk KXL-FM, Portland adds 0.4 to its September number for a 5.1 share and a rise to the #5 rank in the market; iHeartMedia’s WOAI, San Antonio adds to its four-sweep, upward trend to finish the October survey at a 5.7 share and a #2 rank in the market; in Pittsburgh, Entercom’s news/talk KDKA-AM adds 0.4 tenths to finish at a 4.1 share and the #10 rank while sports talk sister KDKA-FM “93.7 The Fan” increases 0.8 for 7.1 share and remains ranked #4; and Entercom’s sports talk WKRK, Cleveland adds 0.9 tenths to its four-month upward trend to finish with a 5.3 share, good for a #8 rank in the market.  TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian, as he does each month, presents his “Takeaways” from the performances of each market’s spoken-word and music stations.  See his “Takeaways” from this first round here.  You can see all the 6+ numbers from subscribing stations here.

Cumulus Names Robert Berju Vice President of Finance and Strategy. Media finance pro Robert Berju joins Cumulus Media in the newly created position VP, finance and strategy. In this role, Cumulus says Berju “will lead financial planning and analysis, budgeting and forecasting, capital management, and modeling of strategic initiatives, while having financial oversight of Westwood One.”  Berju is based in New York City.  Berju was most recently with Clever Devices as SVP, finance and accounting.  He previously served with iHeartMedia as VP, corporate finance and as VP, finance and operations for AMC Networks.  Cumulus Media EVP, marketing and president, Westwood One, Suzanne Grimes says, “Robert is a highly accomplished media veteran with over two decades of finance, accounting, and strategic planning experience.  He will play an important role in building upon the success of Westwood One and propelling the organization to new heights in 2020 and beyond.”

SiriusXM Reports Third Quarter Pro Forma Revenue Up 7%. Reporting 2019 third quarter financial data, SiriusXM says revenue jumped 36.7% to $2.01 billion due to the impact of the February acquisition of Pandora.  Revenue was up 7% on a pro forma basis.  However, net income was $246 million – down from $343 million during the same period a year ago – due largely to expenses tied to redeeming its 6% senior notes due 2024 alongside prior-year non-recurring tax benefits.  Still, the satellite/internet radio business added 210,000 net subscribers, pushing the service’s total to 34.6 million.  Self-pay subscribers now total 29.6 million.  Pandora’s ad revenue rose 8% to $315 million, an all-time high for the service.

TALKERS News Notes. As the wildfires in California continue to create havoc, ABC News Radio says that it is providing extensive coverage with correspondent Alex Stone having spent two days on the fire lines in Northern California covering the Kincaid Fire and correspondent Jason Nathanson on the fire lines in Southern California.  Stone will also host the ‘Start Here’ podcast on Thursday and Friday morning from Los Angeles with a heavy focus on the wildfires…..The content creators at public media organization WHYY-FM in Philadelphia voted overwhelmingly to recognize SAG-AFTRA as their union with 99% voting in support.  The election was conducted by the National Labor Relations Board.  The move allows the unit to proceed with negotiating a first contract.  The new bargaining unit will cover the public media professionals who create content for all areas of the station, including radio, television and digital.  It also covers those working in the news department, on the digital team, on podcasts, in the production departments and on “Fresh Air with Terry Gross,” “The Pulse,” “Billy Penn,” “PlanPhilly,” and “Radio Times.”…..iHeartMedia announces the premiere of “Second Oil Age,” a new, scripted sci-fi podcast set in a deep-sea adventure in a post-energy crisis world.  The first three episodes are available on the iHeartPodcast Network and new episodes debut every Tuesday and Thursday.  The podcast is written by host Robert Lamb and follows Synøve Pan, voiced by Angèle Masters, a specially conditioned agent of the UDEX Oil Corporation as she investigates the disappearance of an oil executive on the deep-sea Atlas Station.  iHM says, “The 10-episode scripted podcast will have true sci-fi fans not only hooked but left with their blood pumping.”

Al Herskovitz Honored by the Media Roundtable in Sarasota.  TALKERS marketing director Al Herskovitz was honored yesterday (10/30) at the monthly luncheon gathering of the Media Roundtable, a Sarasota, FL-based, 300-plus member organization of active and retired media professionals.  Herskovitz (right) pictured with the organization’s chairman Dick Miller (left) was honored for his “years of success in the media and great service to the Media Roundtable.”  TALKERS founder Michael Harrison states, “We are so proud of Al and indeed lucky to have his knowledge and wisdom to draw upon.  At 88, he is still going strong and brings a wealth of career experience to our ‘table’ that spans the decades and centuries.  He is indeed an industry treasure and we love him.”

Impeachment Inquiry, California Wildfires, Twitter Bans Political Ads, 2020 Presidential Race, APEC Summit Canceled/U.S.-China Trade Deal, and Nationals Win World Series Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (10/30). The testimony for the impeachment inquiry against President Trump; the millions affected by the California wildfires and the PG&E power blackouts; social media platform Twitter announces a ban on political ads; the Democrats vying to challenge President Trump in 2020; Chile cancels the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Summit due to civil unrest and the related U.S.-China trade deal; and the Washington Nationals upset the Houston Astros to win the World Series were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. Programming pro Jake Thomson rises to program director at Dick Broadcasting’s country WUBB, Savannah-Hilton Head “BOB 106.9,” taking over for Hunter Meyer, who exited the station back in May.  Thomson will continue to host the PM drive daypart…..Air personality Isaac Wenzel exits iHeartMedia’s Madison country outlet WMAD “96.3 Star Country.  He was also in charge of promotions for the company’s Madison station group.

Thursday, October 17, 2019

| October 17, 2019

PodcastOne and Edison Research Reveal Data on Podcast ‘Super Listeners’ at IAB Upfront. The topline findings from the first-ever Super Listeners study from PodcastOne and Edison Research were revealed yesterday (10/16) at the IAB Podcast Upfront in New York and the complete findings will be made available via a webinar on Tuesday, October 22.  PodcastOne and Edison say, “This study showcases the power of podcasting’s most active consumers, including how they react to advertising, the role ads play in their listening experience, and what the industry must be cautious about in maximizing advertising impact.”  The podcast “super listeners” are defined as “those who spend at least five hours listening to podcasts each week.”  This smaller number of consumers that account for a high degree of demand are the people most likely to hear podcasting ads and to really have an opinion about them.  Some of the highlights of the study indicate that advertising in podcasts increases favorability for specific brands.  For example, 60% of “super listeners” appreciate podcast advertisers for supporting their favorite podcasts and 44% say their opinion of a company is more positive when they hear it mentioned in a podcast they regularly listen to.  This favorability impacts the thing advertisers care about most, conversions.  70% considered a new product or service as a result of hearing a sponsorship or ad on a podcast they regularly listen to and 43% say that when price/quality are equal, they prefer to buy products from companies that advertise on podcasts they regularly listen to.  However, the study also warns that too many ads will leave a negative impression as 50% of “super listeners” say it is important or very important to limit their exposure to ads and 49% of say there are more ads now than there were a year ago.  Right now, only 24% say there are too many ads in podcasts, compared to 62% for TV, 47% for AM/FM radio and 45% for streaming audio.  The webinar will feature PodcastOne CEO Peter Morris and Edison Research SVP Tom Webster as they walk attendees through an exclusive look at podcasting’s heaviest listeners, their attitudes towards advertising, and how they view podcasting in the greater media landscape.  Register here.

Westwood One to Distribute ‘The McLaughlin Group’ Programs. Though we lost program creator and original host John McLaughlin in 2016, the political roundtable talk show “The McLaughlin Group” has been airing on Maryland Public Television since January of this year with a scheduled rollout to public television stations across the country in January 2020.  Now, Cumulus Media’s Westwood One announces it is exclusively distributing and selling a new podcast and weekend radio show with “The McLaughlin Group.”  The podcast becomes available on the Westwood One Podcast Network on November 1, and the radio show will debut the weekend of December 7-8.  New host, political writer and commentator Tom Rogan, is joined by original panel members Pat Buchanan, Eleanor Clift, and Clarence Page.  Additionally, new generation of panelists will join the group engaging in conversations about politics, culture, and foreign policy issues. Listeners will get content from the TV program as well as original bonus content in both the radio show and the podcast.  Cumulus Media EVP and Westwood One president Suzanne Grimes states, “We’re proud to provide access to this legendary show as we gear up for what will certainly be one of the most heated election years in American history.  ‘The McLaughlin Group’ was a pioneer among political talk shows and this distinguished iteration lead by Tom Rogan offers important commentary at a significant time.”  “The McLaughlin Group” is produced by BL Sports & Media Group.

TALKERS News Notes. The nominations for the Digital Hollywood Awards are announced and PodcastOne proudly reveals that its programs have earned a total of 51 nominations in the event’s inaugural year.  The awards will be announced at the Digital Hollywood Conference on November 14, 2019.  PodcastOne CEO Norm Pattiz states, “From the day PodcastOne was founded, we were committed to providing advertisers and listeners programming in all genres. Our showing at the Digital Hollywood Awards, with 51 nominations, shows that we accomplished that goal.”  See all the nominations here…..Chicago media writer Robert Feder reports that former WSCR-AM “The Score” sports talk host Jason Goff is joining NBC Sports Chicago to host pre-game and post-game shows for Chicago Bulls games.  Goff lost his gig at “The Score” after Entercom SVP and market manager Jimmy de Castro decided some of the station’s hosts were becoming too political, writes Feder…..Award-winning television producer and writer Shonda Rhimes is partnering with iHeartMedia to launch Shondaland Audio that will develop a full slate of iHeartRadio Original Podcasts set to release over the next three years as part of the iHeartPodcast Network.  Rhimes will oversee the development and chief digital and design officer Sandie Bailey will manage day-to-day operation.  Rhimes says, “Podcasting continues to see tremendous growth and I’m excited to partner with iHeartMedia as Shondaland expands its storytelling journey into this medium which has seemed to usher in a unique sense of boldness, intimacy and connection.  With iHeartMedia we aim to share stories that are engaging, insightful, and reflect a robust world-view while staying true to the authentic storytelling voice that has become synonymous with Shondaland.”

Executive Moves at Urban One. The company promotes VP and deputy general counsel C. Kristopher Simpson to senior vice president and general counsel.  At the same time, Urban One announces it is bringing Tony Spinelli aboard as chief information officer.  The company says Simpson will now oversee legal operations across the company’s five divisions.  Throughout his tenure with Urban One, Simpson has provided counsel to the board of directors, executive management, and corporate finance/treasury teams.  He’s also served as counsel on various acquisitions and divestitures across Urban One’s divisions, managed its outside counsel, and worked with its investment advisors on various refinancing projects.  Urban One says Spinelli – who comes to the company after 25 years in the financial services industry – will manage all aspects of the company’s technology infrastructure.  He most recently led the digital startup, Fractal Industries.

2020 Presidential Race, U.S.-Syria Policy, Impeachment Inquiry/Ukraine Controversy, U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings Dies, U.S.-China Trade Talks/Hong Kong Bill, and Brexit Deal Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (10/17). The aftermath of Tuesday’s Democratic presidential debate; the Trump Administration’s Syria policy and the withdrawal of American troops for Northeastern Syria; the impeachment inquiry against President Trump and the related controversy over Hunter and Joe Biden’s and Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani’s Ukraine dealings; longtime U.S. Rep. Elijah Cumming dies at 68; the status of U.S.-China trade talks and China’s warning about the U.S. Congress’ Hong Kong bill interfering in their internal affairs; and reports of a Brexit deal on the table were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Legendary Country Jock Bob Kingsley Passes at 80. Country radio air personality Bob Kingsley passed away today (10/17) at his home in Weatherford, Texas after a battle with bladder cancer.  He was 80.  Kingsley’s “Bob Kingsley’s Country Top 40” is produced by his KCCS Productions and syndicated globally by Westwood One.  A celebration of life is planned for November 14 at the CMA Theater at the Country Music Hall of Fame.  TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian profiled Kingsley several years back when he served as special features editor for Inside Radio.  Read that piece here.

More Music Radio News and Career Moves. At Cumulus Media’s hot AC WDVD, Detroit, midday personality and assistant program director Kendall Taylor adds music director duties for the station.  Cumulus Detroit director of FM programming Lance Tidwell says, “Since I started last December, Kendall has been such an important team member and she contributes so much to WDVD.  She brings great ideas and follows them with great organization and execution to what we do on WDVD.  I am thrilled to have her to help improve communication with our important label partners and bringing her own perspective to what we do musically at WDVD.”…..Entercom announces the three dates and lineups for its “Not So Silent Night” alternative music festival.  The RADIO.COM event will happen in New York, hosted by WNYL “ALT 92.3” on December 5; in San Diego, hosted by KBZT-FM “ALT 949” on December 8; and in San Francisco, hosted by KITS “ALT 105.3” on December 7.  Acts booked include: Mumford & Sons, Cage the Elephant, Vampire Weekend, Twenty-One Pilots, Neon Trees, and more…..Modelo beer teams up with rapper Anderson .Paak for the “Modelo Fighting Chance Concert Series,” produced by iHeartRadio, in an effort to raise money for the International Rescue Committee (IRC) to help refugees, immigrants, and Americans in need achieve their full potential.  Anderson .Paak will perform in San Francisco on November 13, Atlanta on November 15, and New York on November 17…..Skratch N Sniff’s Halloween Mix 2019, “Puddle of Blood” features guest host Wes Scantlin from Puddle of Mudd in which he’ll play his favorite Halloween tunes in the mix with tracks from the new album, Welcome to Galvania.  The radio special syndicated by Compass Media Networks is available for alternative and rock stations for air Friday, October 25 through Halloween…..Pictured below at last night’s “iHeartRadio ICONS with Elton John” at the iHeartRadio Theater in Los Angeles is pop icon Elton John (left) with WAXQ, New York “Q104” morning personality Jim Kerr (right).  The event celebrated the release of John’s autobiography, ME (2019, Henry Holt) as Kerr spoke with John about his life and career.

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

| October 16, 2019

Results of WWO’s Podcast Download Fall 2019 Report. This third annual fall study looks into the audience and advertiser trends for podcasts.  Cumulus Media’s Westwood One conducted the study in conjunction with consumer research firm MARU/Matchbox.  It was fielded online late this summer using a nationally representative sample of 601 respondents over the age of 18 who listened to at least one hour of podcasts within a week.  WWO president Suzanne Grimes says, “On the audience side, our latest study finds the majority of new podcast listeners are women and that there is a disconnect between smart speaker ownership and smart speaker usage for podcast.  For advertisers, it’s important to understand that podcast ad preferences for the industry and listeners are at a crossroads – listeners want host-read ads, while the use of traditional pre-produced ads is growing.”  The study found that compared to July 2017, weekly female podcast listeners are spending +23% more time with podcasts.  It also learned that podcast events are a huge growth opportunity for content providers and advertisers.   “Podcast listeners are willing to travel, intend to go to more events, and are open to spending. These podcast event-goers skew male, Millennial 18-34, and are heavy podcast and audio users. One out of five heavy podcast listeners (19%) reported attending a live podcast show.  52% of podcast event-goers are willing to travel over 25 miles to see a live show.”  However, the study also reveals that while smart speaker ownership has increased, “there is little podcast listening on smart speakers…although podcast listeners are 33% more likely to own a smart speaker, their device ownership is not translating into smart speaker podcast listening.  From 2017 to 2019, the number of weekly podcast listeners who use smart speakers to listen to podcasts only grew from 16% to 18%.”  See more here.

Advertiser Sentiment Study Shows Positive Trends in Podcast Advertising. In more podcast-related news and in advance of today’s IAB Podcast Upfront taking place in New York City today (10/16), Westwood One commissioned a study by Advertiser Perceptions to get a handle on podcast advertising sentiment among agencies and advertisers.  The study compares results from the first questionnaire of some 300 agency and marketer respondents in 2015 with this year’s responses.  It indicates that the number of advertisers considering podcast advertising this year is holding steady compared to 2018, with 42% of agencies and marketers definitely considering podcast ads in the next six months.  That’s up from the 18% considering podcast advertising in September of 2015.  As far as actual usage goes, 39% of agencies and marketers are currently advertising in podcasts, up from 32% in May 2018 and up from 15% in September of 2015.  See the Westwood One blog post here.

iHeartMedia’s KFI, Los Angeles and Voice Coach Roger Love Launch Podcast. A new iHeartRadio Original Podcast is being launched by iHeartMedia’s KFI, Los Angeles and renowned voice coach Roger Love.  Titled, “Love Your Voice,” the program is designed to “take listeners on a journey to discover how their voice can positively affect all aspects of their life, from personal to business.  Using real life examples, and with the help of some of his celebrity students like actor Eric McCormack, host Roger Love will help listeners ‘Love Your Voice,’ and then use that voice to change their life.”  Love says, “Our voice tells people a lot about us.  From breathing to melody and tone, your voice can determine the quality of your life and how much success you achieve.  In this new podcast, I’ll take my more than 30 years of experience with singers, actors, actresses, and public speakers and teach you how subtle changes to the way you breathe and speak can change your voice for the better.”

TALKERS News Notes. “The Breakfast Club” star Angela Yee is the guest on the first episode of the Premiere Networks and Dr. Dave Creative Entertainment podcast called, “The Spirited Actor.”  The program is hosted by world-renowned casting director and celebrity acting coach Tracey Moore.  On the show, Moore welcomes celebrities, actors, and industry insiders to discuss the challenges, obstacles, and truths about working in show business.  Yee appears on the podcast to talk about her work as a transitional actor…..The ABC News Investigative Unit and ABC Audio are producing a new podcast titled, “Have You See This Man?,” hosted by “The View” co-host Sunny Hostin with ABC News’ senior investigative reporter Matthew Mosk.  As the title implies, it investigates the cases of most-wanted criminals in the U.S. and the first two episodes focus on convicted murderer Lester Eubanks, who’s been on the run for more than 45 years.  The podcast reveals Eubanks’ crimes and prison escape and features exclusive interviews with key players who knew both Eubanks and his victim.  Listeners are encouraged to provide tips on Eubanks’ whereabouts to the U.S. Marshals.

Democratic Debate/2020 Presidential Race, Impeachment Inquiry, Ukraine Controversy, U.S. Pulls Out of Syrian Conflict, Catch and Kill Book, U.S.-China Relations/Hong Kong Bill, and Brexit Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (10/15). Last night’s Democratic debate and the 2020 presidential race; the Democrats’ impeachment inquiry against President Trump; the controversial Ukraine dealings involving Hunter and Joe Biden and Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani; the state of the war in Syria after the U.S. withdrawal; the controversy surrounding Ronan Farrow’s Catch and Kill book; the trade negotiations between the U.S. and China and the Hong Kong bill making its way through congress; and the U.K.’s Brexit procedure were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. Air personality Karina Farias is promoted to program director for Bonneville’s classic rock KUFX, San Jose “98.5 KFOX.”  She’s been a weekend personality at sister adult contemporary KOIT, San Francisco.  Director of programming and operations Brian Figula states, “Karina has quickly elevated our music and programming initiatives for both KUFX and KOIT.  Her passion, commitment, and digital talents will reinforce the market-leading classic rock position we have on 98.5 KFOX.  Nobody deserves this opportunity more than Karina.”…..Bustos Media Holdings closes on the acquisition of KRCW-FM, Royal City, Washington (in the Tri-Cities market) from Farmworkers Educational Radio Network, Inc.   The station airs a regional Mexican format.

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

| September 18, 2019

‘Brock & Salk’ to Leave KIRO-AM, Seattle Airwaves for Podcast. Due to expanding duties in their other roles, KIRO-AM, Seattle “710 ESPN” personalities Brock Huard and Mike Salk are ending their daily 7:00 am to 10:00 am talk show and will instead do a podcast.  The two have been together on the air for more than a decade.  Salk was recently promoted to director of programming, increasing his programming responsibilities at Bonneville Seattle, and Huard – a college football analyst – joined FOX Sports earlier this year.  The “Brock & Salk” show will wrap on September 27 and the podcast will launch on October 2.  The station has not said how it plans to fill the programming vacancy.

KGMZ-FM, San Francisco Officially Debuts ‘Damon, Ratto & Kolsky’ Show. Although former San Francisco Chronicle and NBC Sports Bay Area columnist Ray Ratto and San Francisco Examiner columnist Matt Kolsky have been on the KGMZ-FM, San Francisco air with Damon Bruce for a couple of months now, the Entercom station announces that the two have officially joined the show and it’s now the “Damon, Ratto & Kolsky” program.  “95.7 The Game” says that Ratto recently agreed to a multi-year deal with the station.  The program airs from 2:00 pm to 6:00 pm.

Salem Reduces Board Members to Cut Expenses. Four of the Salem Media Group, Inc. board members – James Keet Lewis, Jonathan Venverloh, Stuart W. Epperson Jr., and Edward C. Atsinger – have resigned from the company’s board of directors.  Salem CEO Edward G. Atsinger III says in a statement, “The board members’ decisions to resign were not the result of any disagreement with the company on any matter relating to the company’s operations, policies, or practices.  During the last few years, Salem has faced several unique financial headwinds and we are looking for ways to cut costs while not impacting revenue.  These resigning board members agreed that a reduction in board fees and travel costs would help improve the bottom line.  I am grateful for the service of Messrs. Lewis, Venverloh, Epperson Jr. and Atsinger.  Their years of service on the board contributed significantly to the impact Salem is making.”  The Salem board now consists of: Edward G. Atsinger III, Stuart EppersonEric HalvorsonRich Riddle, and Heather Grizzle.

TALKERS News Notes. Central New Jersey news/talk WCTC-AM “News Talk Radio 1450” is adding Compass Media Networks  syndicated “This Morning – America’s First News with Gordon Deal” in the 5:00 am to 9:00 am daypart, effective September 23.  The Beasley Media Group station makes the move two months after former morning personality Bert Baron left the station to take the public information officer position with New Brunswick’s mayor’s office.  Alan David Stein has been hosting the program in the interim. The station says Jennifer Kushinka, the current morning drive news anchor, will provide the latest breaking national headlines during the show and WCTC news anchor Racquel Williams will provide local updates at the top and bottom of the hour “for a seamless blend of local and national news, along with sports traffic and weather.”…..Bay Area radio personality Victor Zaragoza – most recently afternoon host at Entercom’s rhythmic oldies KRBQ “Q102.1” – is now serving with the company as a sports anchor and traffic reporter for all-news KCBS-AM/KFRC-FM, San Francisco…..Pictured here is FOX News contributor Tomi Lahren (left) with relationship expert Jennifer Styers (right) after recording Styers’ “LoveAbility” podcast.  The two talked not politics, but “boundaries, putting up walls, confidence, and looking for love.” Lahren also gives her own raw and real relationship advice for women.  Styers says, “The ‘LoveAbility’ podcast is all about having the conversations around dating, relationships and love.  Tomi’s love story is a sweet one AND it is also full of the same challenges that each one of us face every day in our own personal relationships.”…..Public media company KQED held a groundbreaking for the renovation of its San Francisco headquarters.  KQED says the $91 million project “will transform KQED’s headquarters to accommodate the station’s significant staff growth over the past decade and the expansive nature of the services it provides audiences today.  It will also create brand new onsite spaces for in-person events, programs. and convening.”  Over the past 25 years, KQED has grown from 200 to nearly 500 employees.

Westwood One Uses LeadsRx for Attribution Measurement. Syndication and sales company Westwood One is using LeadsRx for its attribution measurement.  LeadsRx’s attribution software provides a comprehensive, quantitative analysis of how audio advertising drives advertiser search and site traffic.  LeadsRx’s platform also depicts business outcomes such as sales of products, form completions, in-bound phone calls, and more.  Cumulus Media EVP of corporate marketing and Westwood One president Suzanne Grimes says, “The LeadsRx platform gives Westwood One industry-leading marketing measurement capabilities that greatly benefit advertisers with comprehensive, digital-like attribution analytics.”

2020 Presidential Race, Lewandowski Testimony, Saudi Oil Attack, NYTimes Kavanaugh Story, Israeli Elections, GM Strike, Cokie Roberts Passes, and Imelda Threatens Houston Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (9/17). The Democrats vying to challenge President Trump in 2020; former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski’s testimony before the House Judiciary Committee; the attack on a Saudi oil installation and allegations Iran is responsible; the controversy over the New York Times Brett Kavanaugh story; the Israeli elections and the fate of Benjamin Netanyahu; the UAW’s strike against General Motors; journalist Cokie Roberts dies after a battle with breast cancer; and Tropical Storm Imelda threatens Houston with severe flooding were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Music Radio News and Career Moves.  Air personality and programming pro Alex Mac moves from iHeartMedia’s “ALT 106.3” in Des Moines where he was afternoon jock and APD to Raleigh to serve as APD and afternoon drive host at CHR WDCG, Raleigh “G105,” effective October 1.  iHeartMedia Virginia-Carolina Region SVP of programming AJ says, “Alex’s passion for music and entertainment is like no other.  I look forward to him joining the team and I am thrilled about what he will bring to the Raleigh community as we build the next chapter of ‘G105.’”…..Public radio triple A WXPN, Philadelphia announces that it has named Raina Douris host of the nationally syndicated “World Café” program.  Douris was most recently host and writer for the daily, national morning program “Mornings” from the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.  Douris has also served as guest host and interviewer for various CBC Music and CBC Radio programs.  She succeeds Talia Schlanger who announced earlier this year she is leaving the program to pursue new creative endeavors…..iHeartMedia names Brent Johnson general sales manager for four of its music-formatted stations in the Louisville cluster: country WAMZ, hot AC WLGX “100.5 KISS FM,” hip hop WTFX “Real 93.1,” and CHR WNRW “98.9 Radio Now.”   iHeartMedia Kentucky-Indiana SVP of sales Kristy Beebe says, “We are proud to have Brent on our iHeartMedia Louisville team.  Our team is highly impressed by Brent’s previous digital experience.  His familiarity of the Louisville market will contribute greatly to the success of this team.”…..Beasley Media Group CEO Caroline Beasley (left) is pictured below with Big Machine Label Group founder, president and CEO Scott Borchetta (right).  Borchetta joined Beasley for her podcast, “Beyond the Business.”  On it, the two discussed the transformation taking place at BMLG, as well as Borchetta’s thoughts on how the music industry is evolving to meet the needs of today’s consumers.

Tuesday, August 6, 2019

| August 6, 2019

Talk Radio Pioneer Mike Siegel is this Week’s Guest on Harrison Podcast.  Veteran conservative/libertarian talk radio personality Mike Siegel is this week’s guest on the award-winning PodcastOne series, “The Michael Harrison Interview.”  Siegel, a former private practicing attorney and school teacher, currently syndicated by Genesis Communications Network (GCN), was one of the early broadcasters to emerge in the late-eighties post-Fairness Doctrine period described by Harrison as “the modern era of talk radio.”  During that period, Siegel – who hosted shows on such stations as KING and KVI in Seattle – was, according to Harrison, “the quintessential, local, muckraker aggressively holding local politicians, government and big corporations accountable for their actions.” Harrison and Siegel, whose latest book is titled Airing the Wave: Talk Radio at the Dawn of the Digital Era (Page Publishing, 2016), informally chat about the changes talk radio has experienced through the years as it has evolved from the analog era into the digital age, not to mention the transitional state of journalism itself.  To listen to the podcast in its entirety, please click here or click on the player box marked “The Michael Harrison Interview” located in the right-hand column of the TALKERS email newsletter and on every page of Talkers.com.

Ten Candles Atop WBZ-FM’s Birthday Cake. One week from today (Tuesday, 8/13), Beasley Media Group Boston sports talk outlet WBZ-FM “98.5 The Sports Hub” will commemorate its 10th anniversary by airing a ten-hour special (7:00 am – 5:00 pm) celebrating Boston sports moments and events. It will include the victories and agony the city has experienced, as well as special moments that have been broadcast the past decade. According to Beasley Media Boston vice president/market manager Mary Menna, “In ten short years, [WBZ-FM and national spoken-word brand manager] Mike Thomas and the amazing team that he has assembled have built ‘The Sports Hub’ into an award-winning iconic brand and a household name in New England.” Thomas states, “It is an honor to work with the incredibly-talented ‘Sports Hub’ staff, on and off-the-air Not many people gave us a chance ten years ago. We were heavy underdogs – but so were Boston teams for many, many years. The ascendancy that Boston sports fans have experienced is unprecedented. We are just happy to have been along for the ride the past ten years and we look forward to many more victories to come.” Nielsen Audio July 2019 results will be released later today, but in Boston’s June 2019 report, WBZ-FM placed fourth (5.6, 6+). “The Sports Hub” is the flagship station of the Stanley Cup runner-up Bruins; Super Bowl champion New England Patriots; and the Celtics. By the way, in the years since “The Sports Hub” surfaced in 2009, the Patriots have won three Super Bowl titles (2015, 2017 and 2019) and the Red Sox have scored two World Series championship banners (2013 and 2018). The Bruins won the Stanley Cup in the 2010 – 2011 season, while the Celtics were NBA champions in 2008 – one year before “The Sports Hub” debuted.

Cumulus Media Faces $233,000 Sponsorship ID Rule Violations Fine. The infraction as cited by the FCC stems from Cumulus Media’s apparent violations of the commission’s sponsorship identification rules. In addition, Cumulus Media ostensibly failed to promptly self-report some violations, even though the company agreed to do so under a 2016 consent decree with the FCC’s Enforcement Bureau. It is noteworthy, however, that the commission’s “Notice of Apparent Liability For Forfeiture” only advises Cumulus Media on how it has perhaps violated the law and sets a proposed fine. This isn’t a final ruling. The FCC cannot impose a higher penalty than the proposed $233,000 amount. Cumulus Media has a chance to appeal to the “Notice.” Prior to  acting further to resolve the matter, the commission will evaluate Cumulus Media’s legal arguments and any submission of evidence. More than three years ago, the Commission’s Enforcement Bureau reached a $540,000 settlement with Cumulus Media regarding sponsorship identification in radio ads promoting a proposed energy project. It was the largest payment in FCC history for a single-station violation of the commission’s sponsorship ID laws. The settlement resolved an investigation into whether the company’s Dover, New Hampshire country outlet WOKQ “The Big 97.5” violated the rules. The FCC is alleging that in 2017 and 2018, seven Cumulus Media operations failed, in 26 instances, to air appropriate sponsorship identifications as required by its rules. Moreover, the FCC claims the company waited approximately eight months before reporting some rule-breaking, which would be in conflict of its 2016 consent decree commitments.

“Share of Ear” Study Highlights Audio Habits of Registered Voters. Share of Ear views how Americans consume audio content. Cumulus Media’s Westwood One has released results of Edison Research’s recent quarterly analysis. Edison reports share of audio time spent and percentage of Americans who use each type of content. Westwood One president/Cumulus Media executive vice president of marketing Suzanne Grimes states, “To build name recognition, candidate perception, affinity, and voting intent, campaigns have to reach as many voters as possible. According to this new analysis, AM/FM radio has massive and powerful ad-supported audience shares among registered voters and key voter segments.” Among registered voters, AM/FM radio’s share of audio time spent (80%) is eleven times larger than Pandora (7%), twenty times larger than Spotify (4%), and twenty-seven times larger than SiriusXM (3%). Terrestrial radio has the highest share of ad-supported audio time spent among all three major political affiliations: Independents (79%), Republicans (82%), and Democrats (78%). Each quarter, Edison Research conducts a national study of 1,000 Americans (13+) to measure reach and time spent listening to audio sources. Respondents complete a 24-hour diary of their audio listening on an assigned day. Diaries were completed both online and by-mail using a paper diary. Diaries were completed in English and Spanish. Each report consists of 4,000 respondents representing the prior year worth of surveys. This wave is based on persons from the third and fourth quarters of 2018, and the first and second quarters of this year (2019).

 

Recipe for Better Sales Revenue: Better Sales Compensation Programs.  In an exclusive TALKERS advice piece posted today (8/6), veteran radio/media sales pro Bill Brady – president/CEO of Futures & Options, Inc. – suggests that the key to reviving radio sales is to reward hard-working, well-trained reps with increased compensation packages.  He writes, “Over the last generation, radio companies have gone through several rounds of sales compensation reductions.  Sales staffs were reduced in size and byzantine commission and compensation plans were implemented.  Radio revenues have essentially stagnated ever since.” Read the article here.

Entercom, Penn State Intercollegiate Athletics Join Forces. As part of the multiyear, multiplatform agreement, Entercom Philadelphia’s 50,000-watt WPHT “Talk Radio 1210” becomes the new radio home for Penn State football and men’s basketball games, beginning with the 2019 – 2020 athletic season. In addition, Radio.com will feature ancillary on-demand programming. Entercom Philadelphia senior vice president and market manager David Yadgaroff remarks, “As a proud Penn State alum, the easy access to Penn State sports content on air and on Radio.com makes me very happy for our listeners, the University, and all alumni. This will be an excellent partnership with Penn State Athletics and will complement our existing portfolio of leading sports coverage in the city.” Penn State Intercollegiate Athletics vice president Sandy Barbour states, “We appreciate the opportunity to create a new radio partnership with Entercom. The tremendous reach of WPHT ‘Talk Radio 1210’ allows us to connect with Penn State alumni and fans throughout the Delaware Valley, and promote the comprehensive excellence of Penn State Athletics. We look forward to our new partnership and having a great new radio home for Nittany Lion basketball and football in metro Philadelphia.” Penn State Sports Properties vice president and general manager Doug Nelson adds, “We’re happy that WPHT ‘Talk Radio 1210’ will serve as our new radio home for Penn State football and men’s basketball in Philly. The enhanced radio audience and promotional opportunities for Penn State with our new Entercom partnership are exciting for both fans and advertisers.” WPHT cluster-mates KYW “News Radio 1060,” WIP-FM “Sports Radio 94,” adult contemporary WBEB “B-101.1,” classic hits-oldies WOGL, and CHR WTDY “96.5 Today’s Hits” will provide promotional support for Penn State Athletics.

Mayor Joins iHeartMedia Louisville For Its First Community Breakfast. Last Friday’s (8/2) event at the Muhammad Ali Center united over 125 community leaders, business partners, and non-profits to showcase iHeartMedia Louisville’s commitment to the community. WHAS “News Radio 840” on-air talent Terry Meiners hosted the event which spotlighted iHeartMedia Louisville’s community partners. In his keynote speech, Louisville mayor Greg Fischer discussed the importance of giving back within the community. Fischer comments, “Compassion is good for business and it’s good for our city and our country. I want to thank the folks at iHeartMedia Louisville for supporting our vibrant and active non-profit community.” Plans call for iHeartMedia to quadruple its efforts by providing media support to twelve non-profit organizations that fall under the “Kids: Heart of Kentuckiana” theme. Region president for iHeartMedia Kentucky-Indiana Earl Jones notes that, “Each campaign will include PSAs, on-air personality endorsements, as well as streaming and digital placement. We are committed to using our resources to amplify the message of these organizations that work so hard for our community.” Pictured below (left to right) are Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer, iHeartMedia Kentucky-Indiana Region president Earl Jones, and WHAS “News Radio 840” afternoon personality Terry Meiners.

SiriusXM To Debut Daily “Jess Cagle Show” This Fall. Former editor of Entertainment Weekly (2009 – 2014) and People (2014 – 2019), Jess Cagle will host a two-hour weekday (3:00 pm – 5:00 pm, PT) Los Angeles-originated eponymous show on SiriusXM starting this fall. It will feature pop culture news and long-form conversations from Cagle and co-host Julia Cunningham. Of Cagle, SiriusXM senior vice president of news, talk, and entertainment Megan Liberman notes, “It’s hard to think of anyone who knows Hollywood better or could bring more insight and expertise to the conversation about pop culture. This show will be a destination for the biggest stars in movies and television and a must-listen for entertainment fans.” SiriusXM chief entertainment anchor Cagle states, “As a magazine editor, I’ve done a lot of work with SiriusXM. The producers and executives there have been magnificent partners – smart, strategic, and innovative. Over the years, SiriusXM has become a second home to me. I’ve always wanted to do a news and talk show with a lot of humor, smart commentary, and in-depth interviews. I’m so grateful for the opportunity to make that a reality, and excited to work with SiriusXM on their growing podcast and video content. I’m a longtime fan of Julia Cunningham, and am really looking forward to working with her every day.” In addition to his daily show on “SiriusXM Stars” (channel 109), Cagle will host SiriusXM Town Hall events and appear across channels. Cagle spearheaded the partnership with SiriusXM to launch Entertainment Weekly Radio and recently joined the USC Annenberg Center of Communication Leadership & Policy as a senior fellow.

Focus 360 Partners With Lipstick & Vinyl. As a result of investing in the female-oriented podcast network Lipstick & Vinyl and assuming its ad sales representation duties, Focus 360 cracks the podcast arena. According to Focus 360 chief executive officer Phil Brown, “We have been looking for a podcast partner that offered stand-out content. By seeking out the underrepresented and diverse voices in the marketplace, Lipstick & Vinyl delivers audiences that are super-loyal and highly engaged. Expanding our suite of audio ad platforms enables us to offer more solutions to our advertisers.” Lipstick & Vinyl founder and chief executive officer Allyson Marino notes that, “Focus 360 is known for its outstanding relationships with agencies. That is extremely important to the growth of our company and our content partners. Podcasts provide a wonderfully unique and intimate way to connect with people and tell stories. Focus 360’s expertise in audio ad sales made them the perfect choice to help us grow.” Lipstick & Vinyl network hosts include journalists, TV writers, comedians, single mothers, and advocates for social change.

TALKERS News Notes. Changes going into effect today (Tuesday, 8/6) at iHeartMedia San Diego sports talk KLSD “XTRA 1360” find  Darren Smith taking over mid-days (12:00 noon – 3:00 pm) and Jon Schaeffer shifting from that slot to 3:00 pm – 6:00 pm, where he’ll join “Loose Cannons hosts Steve Hartman and Rich Ohrnberger. Prior to his west coast broadcast career, Smith spent four years (1998 – 2002) at ESPN Radio, where he produced several programs, including “The Dan Patrick Show.” Smith will be joined by senior reporter/producer – and San Diego State University grad – Marty Caswell. Taking an “NFL Insider” role with the station is Nick Hardwick, who most recently co-hosted mid-days with Schaeffer. Hardwick’s “Football Hour” will air Monday and Friday at 8:00 am. The revised KLSD “XTRA 1360” weekday lineup is: Costa & Richards (6:00 am – 9:00 am); “The Herd” with Colin Cowherd (9:00 am – 12:00 noon); Darren Smith (12:00 noon – 3:00 pm); “The Loose Cannons” (3:00 pm – 6:00 pm); and Ernie Martinez (6:00 pm – 7:00 pm) ….. Meanwhile, across the hall at news/talk KOGO “News Radio 600,” Lou Penrose’s “Penrose Report” grabs the vacant afternoon drive (3:00 pm – 6:00 pm) opening created when Carl DeMaio (“The DeMaio Report”) exited to focus on running for California’s 50th congressional district seat. Director of news & sports programming for iHeartMedia San Diego/Riverside Brian Long notes, “Lou Penrose is an exciting talent and a perfect addition for the afternoon drive show.” Penrose runs a full-service government relations and public affairs consulting firm and has served as district chief of staff for multiple U.S. congress members, including John Campbell, Ed Royce, and Mary Bono. He previously was director of news & talk programming for Morris Media’s KNWZ, Palm Springs (California) …..  Having covered the Washington Nationals for NBC Sports Washington, Bobby Trosset joins Hearst Television Baltimore news/talk WBAL “News Radio 1090” and co-owned WIYY “98 Rock.” He will anchor morning sports updates on both stations and be a significant part of the stations’ coverage of the NFL’s Baltimore Ravens. WBAL & WIYY president and general manager Cary Pahigian declares, “Nobody covers sports in Baltimore like we do. The home of the Baltimore Ravens and Navy Football welcomes Bobby Trosset to Maryland’s most-connected and elite sports staff.” Trosset – who starts his new assignment this Thursday (8/8) – adds, “Baltimore’s loyalty to its sports teams is second to none. I’m ecstatic to be returning to the city I called home during my college years at Loyola and look forward to providing coverage, insight, and analysis to a passionate fan base.” ….. “The Greatest Bluefish Tournament on Earth” begins two weeks from this Saturday (8/24) at 12:01 am throughout Long Island Sound. The tournament offers up to $40,000 in cash prizes, including the grand prize of $25,000 for heaviest bluefish. Connoisseur Media Bridgeport, Connecticut news/talk WICC “600 AM” will broadcast hourly update results all weekend from Captain’s Cove and interview the first-place winner live … After 14 years with ESPN, Ryen Russillo departs to join Bill SimmonsThe Ringer. On Twitter, Russilo writes, “So … the news is out. I’m headed to [The Ringer]. Want to thank [ESPN] for the last 14 years. I grew up on [SportsCenter]. To be on the actual set, my name on a show, I have to remind myself at times how cool that is.” Using the same social media platform, Simmons tweets, “Happy to confirm that [Ryen Russillo] will be working exclusively for [The Ringer] for all multi-media stuff starting in September. Will be a regular on my BS Pod as well.” ….. This Saturday (8/10), iHeartMedia Wilmington, Delaware holds its 15th annual “Miles For Military” motorcycle ride to benefit USO Delaware. A number of on-air personalities from the cluster will be on site hosting the event, one of the largest motorcycle rides crossing the state. Participants will finish at Dover International Speedway. USO Delaware director Bruce Kmiec remarks, “We are excited about our partnership with iHeartMedia Delaware for the ‘Miles for Military’ motorcycle event. It has grown over the years into a household name event. We are floored by the amount of support we get for our current military and their families by all the riders that attend this amazing event. The money raised provides funding to over 50 USO Delaware military support events and programs we hold each year.” The five-station iHeartMedia Wilmington cluster consists of WDOV “News Radio 1410,” WILM “News Radio 1450,” and WWTX “Fox Sports 1290,” as well as WDSD “94.7 Delaware’s Continuous Country,” and hot AC WRDX “92.9 Tom-FM.” ….. In an unusual move, “CNN Newsroom” showed the names of 49 GOP lawmakers who turned down an invitation to discuss this weekend’s shootings in El Paso and Dayton. “CNN Newsroom” offered 50 Republican lawmakers a chance to discuss the attacks. Yesterday (Monday, 8/5), it led an interview with Florida Republican Congressman Ted Yoho by naming the 49 other GOP lawmakers, who refused to come on the network to talk about the shootings.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. With over 20 years of broadcast industry experience, Al B. Sure! last night (Monday, 8/5) debuted his Sunday through Friday, 7:00 pm – 12:00 pm, REACH Media-syndicated “Love and R&B Hosted By Al B. Sure!” program. The five-hour longform show launched on affiliates in markets that included Dallas; Washington, DC; Detroit; St. Louis; Cincinnati; Columbus; Raleigh; and Richmond. REACH Media and Radio One chief executive officer David Kantor comments, “Al B. Sure! has a style that’s been well-established with his music, performance, and past broadcast experience that is ideal for evening listening. I’m confident he will be a nightly draw to a very large listening audience.” According to the host, “I am elated to be part of what media icon Ms. Cathy Hughes identified as the ‘Dream Team of Radio’ – REACH Media. I look forward to taking ‘Love and R&B’ to a new level.” When the program director of San Francisco’s KISQ “98.1 Kiss-FM” heard Al B. Sure! being interviewed in the early-2000s, he asked the singer if he would do a weekend radio show. Shortly thereafter came Al B. Sure!’s syndicated “‘Secret Garden Radio” show. His musical career dates back to 1988 with “In Effect Mode,” which was certified triple platinum and spent seven straight weeks at #1 on the R&B chart. He has received four Grammy awards; the American Music Award for “Best New R&B Artist”; and more than 75 ASCAP awards for writing and composition performance. Sean Andre is the program’s producer. Founded by Kantor and Tom Joyner in 2003, REACH Media is an Urban One company ….. Under program director Jeremy Reyes (a.k.a. “DJ Jeremiah Red”), Entercom Los Angeles introduces “FireLane” on KAMP-HD3 and Radio.Com. The station features mixers such as DJ Vice, Flipside, DJ Lisa Pittman, DJ Majestik, DJ Sophenom, DJ Drew Pierce, and DJ Sabio. Entercom Southern California regional president Jeff Federman notes that we are “currently living in a world where music tastes have collided and consumers are more interested in the authenticity of the music blend, rather than the genre. I have to credit a member of our team for suggesting the development of a station that encompasses today’s ‘festival tent’ feel with rhythmic, dance, hip hop, and EDM all being represented.”

 

 

July 2019 PPM Data – Round One. Information for the July 2019 ratings period has been released for New York, Los Angeles, and Chicago. Nielsen Audio’s July 2019 survey period covered June 20 – July 17. See all the 6+ numbers from subscribing stations here. Managing editor Mike Kinosian (Kinosian@TALKERS.com) provides his “Takeaways” from these three markets.

New York City

Spoken-Word Formats – Down or flat the past five survey periods for a collective loss of three-tenths (1.8 – 1.7 – 1.6 – 1.5 – 1.5 – 1.5, 6+), iHeartMedia news/talk WOR “710 The Voice of New York” picks up one-tenth in July to 1.6 (6+) and repeats at #20. The March 2019 through July 2019 topline for Townsquare Media’s similarly-formatted WKXW “New Jersey 101.5” is a very consistent 1.2 – 1.2 – 1.3 – 1.2 – 1.3 (#23 to #22, 6+).  May’s one-tenth increase halted five straight down or flat sweeps that resulted in an overall loss of four-tenths. Following four successive decreases accounting for a loss of six-tenths (1.5 – 1.3 -1.2 – 1.0 – .9, 6+), news/talk WABC adds one-tenth to 1.0 (#24 to #23, 6+). Cumulus Media is selling WABC to John Catsimatidis Red Apple Media for $12.5 million; the deal is expected to close later this year.

A May/June loss of seven-tenths (4.2 – 4.0 – 3.5, 6+) by Entercom sports talk WFAN is followed by a July improvement of one-tenth to 3.6 (6+) as the Yankees’ flagship inches up from ninth to eighth. Off one-tenth (1.7 – 1.6, #19 to #20, 6+), WEPN has its weakest 6+-stat (1.6) since “Holiday” 2018’s 1.4. Before adding two-tenths in May, “98.7 ESPN New York” posted a 1.8 (6+) in three of the previous four sweeps (1.8 – 1.8 – 2.2 – 1.8, 6+).

Entercom all-news siblings combine for a net June 2019 – July 2019 decrease of four-tenths, after an overall May 2019 – June 2019 loss of one-half share. Specifically, WINS is trending 3.9 – 3.5 – 3.2 (6+) and drifts from the top ten (#9 to #13), while Mets flagship WCBS-AM falters by a collective full-share via four straight declines (3.4 – 2.9 – 2.6 – 2.5 – 2.4, flat at #15, 6+). In advance of adding two-tenths in May, WINS was -1.1 in three successive down or flat reports (4.8 – 4.1 – 3.7 – 3.7, 6+).

While unchanged at #18, WNYC Broadcasting Foundation news/talk WNYC-FM has lost a collective eight-tenths in three successive negative or neutral sweeps (2.9 – 2.4 – 2.1 – 2.1, 6+). An April boost of three-tenths curtailed four successive down or flat sweeps that resulted in an overall -1.0 (3.6 – 3.2 – 3.2 – 2.9 – 2.6, 6+).  The February 2019 through July 2019 topline for co-owned news/talk WNYC-AM is .4 – .3 – .4 – .3 – .2 – .3 (#37 to #35, 6+).

New York City Music Formats – Within 3.1 – 3.7 range (6+) in each of the last ten ratings periods (3.6 – 3.2 – 3.3 – 3.1 – 3.1 – 3.1 – 3.2 – 3.1 – 3.4 – 3.7, 6+), iHeartMedia rhythmic CHR WKTU erupts with an increase of six-tenths to 4.3 (eighth to sixth, 6+). The last time “103.5 KTU” reached the four-share level (6+) was in September 2018 (4.0). Its format rival, Emmis’ WQHT “Hot 97,” has lost a collective half-share in four straight down or flat moves (3.8 – 3.5 – 3.4 – 3.4 – 3.3, #11 to #12, 6+). Peekskill, New York-licensed Pamal Broadcasting adult contemporary WHUD “100.7 – Westchester & The Hudson Valley’s Music Station” debuts with a .5 (#27, 6+). This marks the third month in succession that WLTW “106.7 Lite FM” logs a 6.8 (6+), as the iHeartMedia adult contemporary outlet is #1 for the 25th consecutive ratings period. WLTW posted a one-half share increase in March, but surrendered seven-tenths in April. A combined -5.3 in January/February (12.5 – 7.6 – 7.2, 6+), “Lite FM” was +5.8 in December/“Holiday” 2018 (6.7 – 9.1 – 12.5, 6+). In back-to-back mega losses totaling a massive -2.7, WPLJ has virtually wiped away its May AQH-stat (3.1 – 1.5 – .4, 6+) and plummets from the top twenty (#20 to #31). In conjunction with its sale from Cumulus Media to Educational Media Foundation, WPLJ flipped from hot AC to contemporary Christian “K-Love Classics.” The legendary contemporary music outlet went out on a very positive note leading up to the format flip though, as it posted five straight New York City gains for a cumulative +1.1 (2.0 – 2.3 – 2.4 – 2.4 – 2.5 – 3.1, “Holiday” 2018 through May 2019, 6+). Down one-tenth in May, Entercom hot AC WNEW-FM “NEW 102.7” follows the WPLJ format change with a combined June/July gain of six-tenths (3.0 – 3.3 – 3.6, 6+) and enters the top ten (#13 to #8). Spanish Broadcasting System Spanish contemporary WPAT-FM “Amor 93.1” notches its fourth successive up or neutral move for an overall plus of six-tenths (2.9 – 2.9 – 3.2 – 3.4 – 3.5, flat at #11, 6+). In the last six sweeps, Spanish tropical sibling WSKQ “La Mega 97.9” has recorded a 5.0 (6+) on three occasions and a 5.3 (6+) the other three times (5.3 – 5.0 – 5.0 – 5.3 – 5.3 – 5.0, fourth to fifth, 6+).

Los Angeles

Spoken-Word Formats – After a combined May/June uptick of eight-tenths (3.7 – 3.9 – 4.5, 6+), iHeartMedia news/talk KFI “AM 640” drops two-tenths to 4.3 (6+) but carries on in fifth-place. Ever since debuting in February, its internet stream notched three straight up or flat moves (.6 – .6 – .7 – .8, #34, 6+), but disappears from print in June and July. Co-owned news/talk KEIB regains the one-tenth it lost in July (.9 – 1.0, flat at #32, 6+). “AM 1150 The Patriot” was off by just an overall one-tenth in three straight down or flat sweeps (9 – .8 – .8 – .8, 6+) before adding two-tenths in May to 1.0 (6+). Having regressed by three-tenths in June (.9 – .6, 6+), Salem Media Group news/talk KRLA “AM 870 The Answer” rebounds with a spike of two-tenths to .8 (#35 to #34, 6+). Cumulus Media-owned KABC “790 News-Talk-Evolved” loses half (-.3) its 6+ AQH-share in three straight dips (.6 – .5 – .4 – .3, #41 to #42, 6+).

Just as they were in June, iHeartMedia sports talk/Dodgers flagship KLAC “AM 570 LA Sports” and Disney-owned KSPN “710 ESPN” are deadlocked at #27, as both repeat June’s 1.4 (6+). KLAC was up two-tenths in June and KSPN improved by one-tenth.

Five straight negative or neutral monthlies by KNX “1070 News Radio” accounted for a full-share loss in that January 2019 – June 2019 timeframe (3.7 – 3.6 – 3.1 – 2.8 – 2.8 – 2.7, 6+) but the Entercom operation is up one-tenth in July to 2.8 (#14 to #13, 6+).

Up one-tenth after June’s loss of one-half share (2.3 – 1.8 – 1.9, 6+), Pasadena City College news/talk KPCC “The Voice of Southern California” remains at #23.

Los Angeles Music Formats – Recording an AQH share between 1.4 – 1.9 in each of the last ten sweeps (1.8  – 1.7 – 1.7 – 1.4 – 1.6 – 1.5 – 1.5 – 1.8 – 1.7 – 1.9, 6+), Univision Radio regional Mexican KSCA “Zona MX 101.9” busts out an improvement of seven-tenths to 2.6 and reenters the top twenty at #16. This is its finest 6+-performance in over a year (2.6, as well in May 2018). Bouncing back from June’s decrease of eight-tenths with a one-tenth gain to 5.9 (6+), iHeartMedia adult contemporary KOST “Coast 103.5” is #1 the tenth straight time. After its “Holiday” 2018 13.0 (6+), “Coast” has followed with 6.2 – 6.5 – 6.5 – 6.3 – 6.6 – 5.8 – 5.9 (6+). Prior to January when it surrendered a -6.8 to 6.2 (6+), KOST was an overall +8.4 through five improvements in a row (4.6 – 4.7 – 4.9 – 5.1 – 9.0 – 13.0, 6+). Co-owned hot AC KBIG “104.3 My-FM” is up or flat the third straight time for a half-share gain (4.1 – 4.5 – 4.6 – 4.6, unchanged at #4, 6+). While it repeats in eighth-place, KLOS logs its seventh straight up or flat trend for a net gain of nine-tenths (2.4 – 2.5 – 2.5 – 2.6 – 2.8 – 2.9 – 3.3 – 3.3, 6+). Meruelo Media Holdings acquired KLOS from Cumulus Media for $43 million and is programming the station under a Local Marketing Agreement. A loss of three-tenths to 2.9 (6+) by Spanish Broadcasting System regional Mexican KLAX not only snaps at seven its consecutive string of up or flat moves that yielded a +1.1 (2.1 – 2.3 – 2.7 – 2.9 – 3.1 – 3.1 – 3.1 – 3.2, 6+), “97.9 La Raza” exits the top ten (#9 to #11). Notwithstanding that it has lost eight-tenths in five consecutive negative or neutral sweeps (4.4 – 4.3 – 4.0 – 4.0 – 3.7 – 3.6, 6+), iHeartMedia CHR KIIS “102.7 Kiss FM” continues in seventh-place. Prior to June, the last time “Kiss” was under a four-share (6+) was in “Holiday” 2018 (3.5). Meanwhile, Entercom-owned/similarly-formatted KAMP “97.1 Amp Radio” is within 2.0 – 2.9 territory the 26th time in a row (2.4 – 2.3, #16 to #17, 6+). Slipping from #18 to #19, iHeartMedia’s KYSR “Alt 98.7 – LA’s New Alternative” has lost two-tenths in four consecutive sweeps without an increase (2.4 – 2.3 – 2.2 – 2.2 – 2.2, 6+). It remains two-tenths ahead of format rival, Entercom-owned KROQ (flat at 2.0, #20 to #21, 6+), whose June gain of one-tenth ended four consecutive negative or neutral sweeps that resulted in a collective half-share deficit (2.4 – 2.4 – 2.4 – 2.3 – 2.0 – 1.9, 6+).

Chicago

Spoken-Word Formats – Even though Tribune Media news/talk and White Sox flagship WGN repeats June’s 2.9 (6+), it drops from #12 to #13. Not only is WLS-AM “890 AM” without a loss the seventh consecutive report, doubling (+1.1) its 6+ AQH share in that “Holiday” 2018 through July 2019 timeframe (1.1 – 1.7 – 1.7 – 1.7 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 2.1 – 2.2, 6+), the Cumulus Media news/talk outlet is back in the top twenty after a lengthy absence (#21 to #20).

In May, Entercom sports talk WSCR “670 The Score” posted its best 6+-showing (4.2) since October 2018, but the Cubs flagship loses a combined four-tenths in June/July (4.2 – 3.9 – 3.8, flat at #7, 6+). Erasing June’s loss of two-tenths with a July increase of three-tenths (1.4 – 1.2 – 1.5, 6+), Disney/ESPN-owned WMVP “ESPN Chicago 1000” progresses from #26 to #24.

Dipping from third to fourth, Entercom news outlet WBBM-AM is an overall -1.4 via six successive down or neutral moves (6.2 – 6.1 – 5.8 – 5.3 – 5.3 – 4.8 – 4.8, 6+). Prior to April, WBBM-AM finished on top the previous three survey periods.

Off a collective nine-tenths in three consecutive sweeps without an increase (3.4 – 2.8 – 2.8 – 2.5, 6+), Chicago Public Media news/talk WBEZ ends the slide with a gain of two-tenths to 2.7 (unchanged at #19, 6+).

Chicago Music Formats – A combined -1.3 in May/June (5.6 – 5.2 – 4.3, 6+), iHeartMedia urban AC WVAZ “V-103” reduces roughly half the deficit with an improvement of six-tenths to 4.9 (fourth to third, 6+). The combination of a three-tenths uptick by Hubbard Broadcasting classic rock WDRV “97.1 The Drive” (5.1 – 5.4, second to first) and an equal margin decrease by hot AC cluster-mate WTMX “101.9 The Mix” (5.5 – 5.2, second to first, 6+) results in the siblings swapping places at the top. “Mix” was #1 the past three months and continues its relatively steady January 2019 through July 2019 topline of 5.4 – 5.5 – 5.4 – 5.9 – 5.6 – 5.5 – 5.2 (6+); April’s 5.9 was its highest 6+-stat since November 2017’s 6.3. A combined +.9 in May/June (3.9 – 4.5 – 4.8, 6+), Cumulus Media classic hits-oldies WLS-FM “94.7 Chicago’s Classic Hits” surrenders all but one-tenth of that increase (4.8 – 4.0, -.8, 6+), skidding from third to sixth. Advancing from #18 to a three-way scrum at #16, Entercom-owned WUSN “US-99 Chicago’s Hottest Country” has a February 2019 through July 2019 topline of 3.0 – 2.6 – 2.7 – 3.0 – 2.7 – 2.8 (6+). Similarly-formatted/iHeartMedia-owned WEBG repeats June’s 1.6 (6+) but inches up from #24 to #23. Before dropping two-tenths in June, “Big 95.5 Chicago’s New Country” had been up or flat the previous seven sweeps for an overall gain of four-tenths (1.4 – 1.4 – 1.5 – 1.5 – 1.6 – 1.6 – 1.7 – 1.8, 6+). Chicago’s three principal adult contemporary operations all record June 2019 – July 2019 fluctuations of one-tenth. On the positive side, iHeartMedia’s WLIT “93.9 Lite FM” is up or neutral the fourth time in a row for a gain of four-tenths (3.9 – 3.9 – 3.9 – 4.2 – 4.3, sixth to fifth, 6+) and Venture Technologies Group-owned WRME-LP “FM 87.7 – Me TV” has its third straight bump for a collective increase of six-tenths (2.5 – 2.9 – 3.0 – 3.1, #12 to #11, 6+). Prior to gaining three-tenths in June, WLIT was an overall -9.4 as a result of five successive down or flat reports (13.3 – 5.0 – 4.4 – 3.9 – 3.9 – 3.9, 6+); “Lite FM” was a combined +10.1 in December/“Holiday” 2018 (3.2 – 8.4 – 13.3, 6+). June’s 3.0 marked the first time WRME-LP reached the three-share level (6+) since November 2018’s 3.3. Meanwhile, Hubbard Broadcasting’s WSHE “100.3 SHE,” which was up one-tenth in June, returns that increase in July (2.8 – 2.9 – 2.8, #15 to part of that three-way logjam at #16, 6+). Before faltering by one-half share in May, WSHE notched an overall increase of eight-tenths via four consecutive positive or flat moves (2.5 – 3.1 – 3.2 – 3.2 – 3.3, 6+). Up four-tenths in four straight sweeps without a loss, alternative WKQX logs a 3.0 the third time in a row (2.6 – 2.8 – 3.0 – 3.0 – 3.0, #12 to #13, 6+). Meanwhile, iHeartMedia urban contemporary WGCI-FM has a January 2019 through July 2019 topline of: 2.9 – 2.7 – 2.9 – 2.8 – 2.7 – 2.8 – 2.8 (flat at #16, 6+).

Tuesday, July 16, 2019

| July 16, 2019

APOLLO 11 ANNIVERSARY:  CBS News Radio Correspondent Peter King is This Week’s Guest on Harrison Podcast.  In commemoration of the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing (7/20) and the stellar 45-year career of a CBS News Radio reporter who has been covering the Kennedy Space Center in Florida for the past two decades, Peter King is this week’s guest on the award-winning PodcastOne series “The Michael Harrison Interview.”  Harrison (a passionate space enthusiast) and King discuss a wide variety of topics including NASA, US space exploration, memories of the Apollo 11 mission, their love of radio, and the state of journalism in America.  To listen to the podcast in its entirety, please click here or click on the player box marked “The Michael Harrison Interview” located in the right-hand column of the daily TALKERS email newsletter and every page of Talkers.com.

Esiason Gets The Call to NY State Broadcaster’s Association HOF. Twelve-year Entercom New York City sports talk WFAN morning show co-host, Boomer Esiason, has been selected to the New York State Broadcaster’s Association’s Hall of Fame. The legendary former NFL quarterback will be inducted at the Broadcast Leadership and Hall of Fame luncheon during the NAB New York Show in October. Entercom New York regional president/market manager Susan Larkin remarks, “Boomer has been a cornerstone of this station since his arrival. This distinguished recognition represents his invaluable contributions to our station and industry overall.” In thanking the NY State Broadcaster’s Association “for this incredible honor,” Esiason comments, “It is extremely humbling to be recognized alongside hardworking, accomplished individuals in our industry.” He and Gregg Giannotti form “Boomer and Gio” weekday mornings on WFAN, which is the flagship of the Yankees, Giants, Brooklyn Nets, and New Jersey Devils. After his 14-year NFL career, Esiason debuted as a commentator on ABC-TV’s “Monday Night Football.” For nearly two decades, he has called games for Westwood One/CBS Radio Sports and served as a studio analyst for “The NFL Today” on CBS-TV and Showtime’s “Inside the NFL.”

Talkers 2019: Telling the Story Videos Continue Posting Today with Special Luncheon Address by Salem Radio Network Host Sebastian Gorka.  TALKERS is continuing to post key speeches, presentations and sessions from the recent 22nd annual edition of the talk media industry’s longest-running and most-important national convention – Talkers 2019: Telling the Story.  Today’s (7/16) post presents a special luncheon address by former Trump Administration advisor Sebastian Gorka, now a personality syndicated by Salem Radio Network.  Yesterday’s (7/15) post presents the panel discussion “Adding the Video Component to Talk Radio” featuring Howie Carr, host of the Howie Carr Show (Howie Carr Radio Network and Newsmax TV), Jared Hart, former PD, WPHT, Philadelphia, and  Art Vuolo, president, Vuolo Video.  The session was introduced and facilitated by Scott Lakefield, APD, WOR, New York.  Already posted: the special keynote address delivered by CBS Sports Radio syndicated host Jim Rome with an introduction from Yappy Days author/college professor Bernadette Duncan; the panel discussion, “Generating Talk Radio Revenue in 2019” featuring (in alphabetical order) Asa Andrew, host, AsaRx;  Vince Benedetto, CEO, Bold Gold Media Group;  Suzanne Grimes, EVP/marketing, Cumulus Media and president, Westwood One; and Dave Robinett, chief marketing officer, #250-America’s Mobile Speed Dial – moderated by Erica Farber, president and CEO of the Radio Advertising Bureau (RAB) and introduced by renown independent station owner Michael Zwerling of KSCO/KOMY, Santa Cruz, CA; the special keynote address by Key Networks syndicated personality Bill O’Reilly; the one-on-one discussion, “Sports Talk Radio’s Role in Popular Culture” featuring a conversation between Mark Chernoff, senior VP/programming WFAN/Entercom, NY and captain/sports format, CBS Sports Radio and Mike Thomas, PD, WBZ-FM “98.5 The Sports Hub,” Boston and brand manager/spoken word, podcasts, esports, Beasley Broadcasting with  Kate Delaney, host, GCN and correspondent NBC Sports Radio, serving as facilitator; the panel discussion, “Broadcasting and Podcasting,” featuring (in alphabetical order) Greg Batusic, chief operating officer, PodcastOneSteven Goldstein, founder/CEO Amplifi MediaMichael Czarnecki, program director, WONK-FM, Washington, DC and iHeartRadio Podcast Channel; and Craig Schwalb, former program director WABC, New York and WPRO, Providence with moderation by Mike Kinosian, managing editor/West Coast bureau chief, TALKERS; the keynote “fireside chat” in which TALKERS publisher Michael Harrison interviews Premiere Networks/Fox News Channel star Sean Hannity in a casual one-on-one conversation introduced by DC Radio Company executive director Victoria Jones; the opening address titled, “Telling the Story,” delivered by Lee Habeeb, host and producer of the successful syndicated program, “Our American Stories;” RAB president/CEO Erica Farber receiving the Woman of the Year award and SiriusXM Satellite Radio star “Cousin” Bruce Morrow receiving the Lifetime Achievement award. The convention took place in New York City on Friday, June 7 and was one of the most positively received in the event’s colorful history.  TALKERS plans to add one or two videos per day to those posted until all the major events of the conference are posted here at Talkers.com where they will remain on view for the rest of the year.  To see the videos and convention video page, please click here.

Preliminary iHM Q2 Results, NASDAQ Listing. Under the Global Select Market ticker symbol “IHRT,” NASDAQ approves the listing of iHeartMedia’s Class A common stock, par valued at $0.001 per share. Class A shares are expected to begin trading on NASDAQ this Thursday (7/18). Meanwhile, preliminary SEC-filed second-quarter financial show year-to-year revenue rose 2.4% to $913 million. Operating income (OI) was off $1 million to $180, while Adjusted EBITDA grew 3.1% ($255 million to $263 million). Preliminary results have not been audited or reviewed by the company’s independent accountants, and remain subject to review by iHeartMedia’s management and audit committee. Results may differ from actual results, which remain subject to completion of management’s and the audit committee’s final review, as well as the interim review by its independent accountants.

Study: Podcast Ads Least Likely To Be Skipped. Monthly podcast listeners skip digital ad formats the most – online pop-up ads, online banner ads, e-mail advertising, direct mail, and online video. That’s among the nuggets Westwood One uncovered when it teamed with Canadian media research consultancy Audience Insights in a study focused on podcast consumers and their listening habits. Fielded this past March, the report examines podcast consumption habits of 1,407 monthly podcast listeners. It addresses four distinct segments based on when people began listening to podcasts: 313 “Podcast Pioneers” who started listening four or more years ago; 415 who began listening two to three years ago; 327 who began listening in the past seven to 12 months; and 352 “Podcast Newcomers” who began listening within the last six months. Westwood One president/Cumulus Media executive vice president of marketing Suzanne Grimes states, “The finding that emerging podcast listeners are using a diverse number of platforms signals a turning point for the podcast industry. When compared to the ‘Podcast Pioneers,’ who use Apple Podcasts almost exclusively, ‘Podcast Newcomers’ are open to using multiple platforms to access podcasts.” Audience Insights president Jeff Vidler notes, “This podcast download report expands on much of what we have seen as we put our microscope on Canadian podcast listeners. Podcasting is uniquely engaging, on trend with on-demand content platforms like Netflix or paid music streaming services, but the only one accessible to advertisers.” Other study highlights include: Roughly three of ten (31%) “Podcast Newcomers” typically discover podcasts by hearing about them on terrestrial radio. While the average monthly podcast listener accesses 2.7 podcast platforms, “Podcast Newcomers” use 3.5 platforms. Two of three “Power” podcast listeners follow their favorite podcast hosts on social media. Podcast listeners equally use Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube to follow their favorite hosts. Approximately two of five (42%) “Power” podcast listeners follow their favorite podcast host on Twitter, compared to 22% of U.S. adults who ever use Twitter. Spotify and Google Podcasts are attracting consumers who recently began listening to podcasts. Among those listening to podcasts over four years, Apple is the leading destination.

SBG President: “Case Is Far From Over.” As we reported yesterday (TALKERS, 7/15), a Los Angeles superior court jury ruled unanimously in favor of independent syndicator of radio live play-by-play Sports USA in its multi-year violation of contract suit against Sun Broadcasting Group. The jury awarded Sports USA damages in excess of $2 million as compensation for Sun’s breach of its advertising representation agreement with Sports USA. Sun Broadcast Group president Jason Bailey, however, stresses, “This case is far from over. We were shocked and saddened by the verdict in Pacific West Radio Sports, LLC (d/b/a Sports USA) v. Sun Broadcast Group, Inc. Despite establishing wrongdoing by Sports USA from even before the inception of the agreement between the parties, the jury granted judgment in favor of Sports USA. The jury reached that verdict without the benefit of being able to consider key evidence of Sports USA’s wrongdoing. Sun was barred from introducing that evidence at trial on hearsay grounds. We remain determined to see that justice is done, and plan to pursue every available avenue to overturn this result so that Sports USA’s improper business practices are exposed and no other company falls victim. This verdict involves the old Sun, which has not traded since late 2018. It does not involve the current SBG-owned and operated by Gen Media Partners.” Bailey further notes, “This will be the only statement I will make on the matter while we work through the appeal process.”

Three Moody Radio AM Stations Are On The Block. With plans to exit the AM radio business, Moody Radio is set to spin off its three AM facilities. Chicago-based operator Moody Bible Institute will focus on FM network expansion. Senior vice president of media Greg Thornton writes, “Moody Radio seeks to transform the world for Jesus Christ, one listener at a time, by producing and delivering quality, creative, biblical content, which helps people take the next step in their journey with Jesus. In looking to the future, Moody Radio is committed to double [our] overall impact by  2030. Our strategic roadmap to achieving this bold vision includes audience growth through market expansion/realignment, and content development strategies.” Thornton recognizes “the limitations of AM broadcasting today, including [that] many AM stations only broadcast in the daytime.” Thus, Moody Radio will be selling Spanish religion WMBI W268AY “Moody Radio – AM 1110,” Chicago; Spanish religion WDLM “Moody Radio – AM 960,” East Moline/Quad Cities, Illinois; and Spanish religion WGNR “Moody Radio – AM 1470,” Anderson, Indiana. According to Thornton, “Listeners in these cities will still hear Moody Radio 24 hours a day on our strong FM signals. Proceeds from the sale of these three AM licenses will be used to further the expansion of Moody Radio through the addition of digital/online content, new apps in both English and Spanish, and the acquisition of select FM broadcast licenses.”

TALKERS News Notes.  As part of a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing investigating charges of bias against conservatives, Salem Radio Network host Dennis Prager will testify at 2:30 pm (ET) today (Tuesday, 7/16). Prager’s opening statement has already been submitted and, in part, he states, “I have been communicating this appreciation of America for 35 years as a radio talk show host, the last 20 in national syndication with the Salem Radio Network, an organization that is a blessing in American life.” According to Salem Radio Network vice president of news & talk programming Tom Tradup, videos from Prager’s “online Prager University have been blocked as ‘controversial’ by Google and other search engines. Google officials deny any political bias or filtering of conservative viewpoints.” Texas Republican senator Ted Cruz is the chair of today’s hearing ….. In two weeks (7/30 & 7/31), Westwood One News’ coverage of the Democratic National Committee-sanctioned/CNN-produced Democratic Presidential Debates will air from Detroit. Westwood One News correspondent Evan Haning will anchor, starting at 7:59 pm (ET) both nights, while Bob Costantini handles on-scene reporting and will be available for live Q&A from the Motor City. The network will offer stations an unanchored feed and one-minute special reports each night at the top and bottom of the hour (8:00 pm – 12:00 midnight) ….. Set to rejoin WTEM “980 The Team” in three weeks (8/5) is Kevin Sheehan, who wasn’t retained when Radio One acquired the Washington (DC) sports talk outlet late last year. Sheehan co-hosted mornings with Chris Cooley and will return for 7:00 am – 10:00 am duty. Radio One senior regional vice president Jeff Wilson comments, “I’m elated to have Kevin Sheehan back home on ‘The Team.’ His unique approach to the sports landscape, combined with his overwhelming passion, provides an entertainment destination for listeners throughout the Nation’s Capital.” Prior to departing last year, Sheehan had been with WTEM 14 years and states, “I’m looking forward to coming home – it’s great to be back.” ….. The first three Jim Rutt Show podcasts went live yesterday (Monday, July 15) on JimRuttShow.com. The series will examine “cutting-edge thinking” in science and technology, and the future of our economic, political and social systems and institutions. The past chair of The Santa Fe Institute; former chief executive officer of Network Solutions; and first CTO of Thomson-Reuters, Rutt was called “the internet’s bad boy” by The New York Times for his reputation for creative mischief. A complete collection of Rutt’s podcasts, including show transcripts, episode highlights, guest biographies, and links are available on the aforementioned website.

Line Drives. This past weekend, NBC Sports Radio produced seven radio shows from the driving range at Edgewood Tahoe golf course in Lake Tahoe (Nevada), site of the American Century Championship celebrity golf tournament. Flanking MLB Hall of Fame pitcher John Smoltz (center) are Tim Murray and Michael Jenkins, hosts of NBC Sports Radio’s “The Daily Line.” Launched this past January in conjunction with Westwood One, “The Daily Line” is a weekday, 3:00 pm – 7:00 pm sports talk show, focusing on sports betting.

Trump’s Controversial Tweets; US Immigration Policy/Detention Facilities; 2020 Presidential Race; and US-China Trade War Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (7/15). President Donald Trump’s Tweets attacking four Congressional Democratic women of color; conditions for migrants detained at the border; the relative standing and contributions raised by Democratic Party presidential candidates; and the US-China trade war’s impact on the Chinese economy were the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

CRB Elects 2019 – 2020 Board of Directors. Returning as board president of the Country Radio Broadcasters is Townsquare Media’s Kurt Johnson; Cumulus Media’s John Shomby is elected vice president; and SummitMedia’s Beverlee Brannigan returns as secretary. Johnson remarks, “This is one of the strongest boards CRB has ever had. [I am] so proud to work with this group of radio and Music Row leaders to present country with the best CRS ever – February 19 – 21, 2020.” This year’s board of directors are: Chuck Aly (Country Aircheck); Beverlee Brannigan (SummitMedia); Becky Brenner (Albright & O’Malley & Brenner Consulting); Johnny Chiang (KKBQ-FM, Houston); George Couri (Triple 8 Management); Andy Denemark (United Stations); Ryan Dokke (Curb); Mike Dungan (UMG); John Esposito (Warner Music Nashville); Dan Halyburton (Falls Media); Debra Herman (Apple); Steve Hodges (Sony Nashville); Clay Hunnicutt, Dave Kelly (Big Machine Label Group); Jon Loba (BBR/BMG); Mike McVay (McVay Media); Charlie Morgan (Emmis Communications); Rod Phillips (iHeartCountry); Tim Roberts (WYCD, Detroit); Royce Risser (UMG); Bob Richards (Emmis Communications/WLHK, Indianapolis); Brittany Schaffer (Spotify); John Shomby (Cumulus Media); Lesly Simon (Pearl Records); Matt Sunshine (CFSS); Joel Raab (Joel Raab Country Radio/Media); Ryan Redington (Amazon Music); Kristen Williams (Warner); and Charlie Monk continues as a lifetime director emeritus.

More Music Radio News and Career Moves. Many stations are noting the 50th anniversary of Apollo 11 astronaut Neil Armstrong’s first-ever “moon walk” (July 20, 1969) with Apollo lunar module pilot Buzz Aldrin. Without question, one of the cleverest promotions is being done by the program director of Cumulus Media Salt Lake City country-formatted KUBL “K-Bull 93” … Travis Moon. As part of the “Travis Moon Walk,” which began today (Tuesday, 7/16) at 7:00 am and is expected to end Saturday (7/20) coinciding with that history-making mission, Moon plans to “walk” more than 80 miles to raise money for Salt Lake City-based Shriner’s Hospitals For Children. Hoping to travel approximately 16 miles a day, Moon admits it will be a “long, tough walk. The exciting part is the unknown – if I can actually do this physically. I guess we will all find out.” While on foot from (Utah cities) Provo to Ogden, Moon will discuss the hospital’s purpose and invite listeners to make donations ….. “California Live,” a 30-minute lifestyle/entertainment show, which airs on Los Angeles’ KNBC-TV (as well as KNTV-TV, San Jose and KNSD-TV, San Diego) has added “On Air with Ryan Seacrest” co-host Sisanie as a correspondent. In her latest segment, Sisanie visits Los Angeles’ first cat cafe experience, where customers can drink coffee while cuddling rescue cats that are up for adoption ….. Starting next Monday (7/22), Sytonnia “Toni” Moore joins Cox Media Group Atlanta urban AC WALR “Kiss 104.1” as co-host/news anchor on the (5:00 am – 9:00 am) “Morning Groove” with Art Terrell and Corey “Zooman” Miller. The station’s director/branding and programming, Terri Avery, declares, “Toni Moore is the real deal. Her experience and passion for radio is beyond compare and will take ‘Kiss 104.1’ to new levels.” Moore remarks, “This is an incredible opportunity: I’m thrilled and honored to be joining the powerhouse that is Cox Media Group and ‘Kiss 104.1.’ It’s a dream I’ve had for a few years. It’s beyond exciting to see it come to fruition.” Moore previously was an on-air personality for cross-town Entercom urban contemporary and sports talk siblings WVEE “V-103” and WZGC “92.9 The Game,” as well as a sports reporter for the Atlanta Hawks and Atlanta Falcons ….. Continuing his role as afternoon-drive host, Andy Chanley adds music director duties at California State University – Northridge’s KCSN & Saddleback College’s KSBR, Mission Viejo (both California, simulcast on 88.5). General manager Patrick Osborn proclaims, “Andy has done it all in this market – mornings, middays, afternoon drive – and has vast experience in all the rock format genres. I’m happy to say we are operating at full strength with great, experienced broadcasters in every position.” Program director Marc “Mookie” Kaczor notes, “Andy is such an asset for us. He’s an incredible personality and he’s been a great sounding-board for me. We’re constantly bouncing ideas off of each other.” Chanley adds, “There’s no station in the world like 88.5 FM. It’s a special blend of music and people — on both sides of the transmitter — that makes radio fun again. I’m really proud to be on this team, and beyond excited at the opportunity to help steer the rudder even more.” KCSN and KSBR began simulcasting just over two years ago …. Three-year WUSN “US-99” nighttime talent Kimmie Caruba departs the Entercom country outlet. Caruba was previously heard in the same day-part in Phoenix on co-owned KMLE “Country @ 107.9,” and she did mid-days in that Arizona market on cluster-mate KALV “Live 101.5.” ….. A six-episode podcast on Milwaukee’s hip-hop history, “Backspin,” debuted yesterday (Monday, 7/15) on Radio Milwaukee triple A WYMS “88Nine.” Hosted by hip-hop expert Tyrone Miller (“DJ Bizzon”) and “88Nine” music director Justin Barney, “Backspin” provides an insightful view into black America in the late-1970s and early-1980s, through the lens of hip-hop. Miller comments, “The series is about so much more than who recorded Milwaukee’s first hip-hop song. It’s about the journey of getting to that song. Hip-hop is more than a genre: It’s connected everywhere – radio, movies, TV, and fashion. It’s in every piece of culture.” ….. After departing two months ago from Townsquare Media, “Taste of Country Nights” host Sam Alex surfaced yesterday (Monday, 7/15) on the eponymous “Sam Alex Show.” Affiliate licensing and sales for the syndicated program are being handled by Sun Broadcast Group. Alex notes (in Forbes Magazine) that he’s “so excited about this new chapter. The world of radio,” he opines, “has changed so much in the past decade, with continued consolidations, new technology, and increased competition to discover new music. This change positions me to have full creative control and reach listeners in new ways.” ….. KDVV “V-100 Topeka’s Rock Leader” 3:00 pm – 7:00 pm talent Randy Raley adds PD duties at the Cumulus Media rocker and classic hits cluster-mate KWIC “99.3 The Eagle.” Cumulus Topeka operations manager Amber Lee notes, “Randy brings significant on-air experience and format knowledge to these stations and to our programming team.” According to Raley, “I’ve been a radio geek since an early age – I’m happy to be taking the programming reins at the legendary ‘V-100.’ Amber Lee has put together an incredible staff and we’re going to do great things together.” St. Louis Classic Rock Hall of Famer Raley did afternoon drive on St. Louis’ KSHE  for 13 years and has worked in Kansas City at KYYS “KY-102,” and KCFX “101 The Fox.” ….. Among the latest affiliates for Envision Networks’ “The Wolfman Jack Radio Show” is Metro Radio Berkeley Springs, West Virginia classic hits-oldies WXDC. The show airs Saturday nights starting at 7:00 pm on “Cool 92.9 – Good Times/Great Oldies.”

 

 

June 2019 PPM Data – Part Four. June 2019 ratings information has been released for Austin, Raleigh, Indianapolis, Milwaukee, Nashville, Providence, Norfolk, Jacksonville, West Palm Beach, Greensboro, Memphis, and Hartford. Nielsen Audio’s June 2019 survey period covered May 23 – June 19. See all the 6+ numbers from subscribing stations here.

Thursday, June 13, 2019

| June 13, 2019

Cumulus Prices $500 Million Senior Notes Offering.  This press release from Cumulus Media Inc. comes just a few days after the initial news that its indirect wholly owned subsidiary Cumulus Media New Holdings Inc. was pricing $300 million in aggregate principal amount of 6.750% senior secured first-lien notes due 2026.  Now, that figure is increased to $500 million.  The sale of the Notes is expected to close on June 26, 2019. Cumulus says it intends to use the net proceeds of the offering to partially repay existing indebtedness under its senior secured term loan facility.  These notes are available only to qualified institutional buyers in a private offering.

Pat Frisch Exits KKOB-AM, Albuquerque.  Program director and midday talk show host Pat Frisch exits Cumulus Media’s news/talk KKOB-AM, Albuquerque after 20 years with the station.  He says, “It was a hell of a run.  During the 20-years we had a run of nearly 14 years at #1.  Three Marconi’s, including talk station of the year and legendary station.  I was twice voted as one of the top programmers by Radio Ink. The station was also chosen as one of the best talk stations by Radio Ink and was voted best talk station by the former Radio and Records.  The last few years have been a struggle but I’m leaving with the station back at #1 12+ and my midday show goes out on top #1 adult 25-54 and #3 adults 18-49.”  Frisch says he plans to take a few weeks off before searching for his next opportunity. He can be reached at patfrisch46@yahoo.com.

RTDNA 2019 Newsroom Diversity Report; Radio Workforce of Color Highest in 20 Years. The 2019 Newsroom Diversity Report conducted by the Radio Television Digital News Association and Lawrence Herbert School of Communication at Hofstra University indicates that the percentage of women and people of color in local TV newsrooms reached record highs for the second year in a row and the local workforce of color is the highest it has been in more than 20 years – the third highest level ever.  The study also found that the percentage of radio news directors of color is at the highest level in five years.  RTDNA executive director Dan Shelley says, “This research is both a cause for celebration and a call to action for our industry to do even better in its efforts to ensure newsroom staffs represent the diversity of the communities they serve. It’s gratifying to see improvement in the radio news sector, but clearly there is more to be done to ensure radio newsrooms contain a diverse workforce.”  The report shows women make up 44.4% of the workforce compared to last year’s 34.3%.  Furthermore, local radio management is the most diverse in the last five years, with the percentage of women in management positions up significantly.  See more here.

Westwood One Announces Partnership with Subnation for Esports Audio Content. In an effort to capitalize on the popularity of esports, Westwood One and multi-platform media brand Subnation enter into a strategic alliance designed to bring esports audio content to millions of fans across the country.  The first collaboration between the two companies is a weekly feature on the Westwood One-syndicated “Zach Sang Show.”  The partnership begins with Zach Sang being on site with Subnation at this week’s 2019 Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) talking with celebrities, artists, insiders, and fans at Subnation’s “ESPORTS ZONE.”  These interviews will air on the nightly radio show. The first guest is gaming legend Paul “Redeye” Chaloner (pictured here at right with Sang).  WWO says heavy esports watchers are more likely to be heavy AM/FM radio listeners, according to a recent MARU/Matchbox National Community study fielded in February 2019.  The study also found that heavy esports watchers and heavy video game players frequently listen to sports, rock, and top 40.  Cumulus Media EVP/marketing and Westwood One president Suzanne Grimes says, “Given our decades of leadership in iconic sports audio entertainment, Westwood One is uniquely positioned to capture the passion, scale and momentum of esports, bringing the new voices, commentary and perspectives of esports to the audio platform.  Subnation is the perfect partner to collaborate on authentic, high quality esports content that will resonate with our massive audience.”

WGTK, Greenville’s Joey Hudson Featured on HLN Program. Morning drive talk radio personality Joey Hudson – heard daily on Salem Media Group’s WGTK-FM, Greenville, South Carolina “94.5FM The Answer” – is featured on the CNN Headline News documentary “Chained By a Serial Killer” that will air on HLN on June 15. Hudson is a longtime board member of Crime Stoppers and offers perspective on the case of Upstate South Carolina realtor Todd Kohlhepp, who is currently serving seven life sentences, and his double life as both a respected citizen and a serial killer. Hudson says, “I got to know parents of one of the victims, and helped raise awareness of these horrible crimes which, thankfully helped lead to Kohlhepp’s 2016 arrest and conviction before others fell victim to his evil.”

Round Three of May PPMs Released.  The third round of Nielsen Audio’s May 2019 PPM survey results is released for the group of 12 markets that includes: Portland, Charlotte, San Antonio, Sacramento, Pittsburgh, Salt Lake City, Las Vegas, Orlando, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Kansas City, and Columbus.  You can see all the 6+ numbers from subscribing stations hereTALKERS managing editor Mike Kinosian presents his Takeaways from this group of markets tomorrow (6/14).

Comedian and SiriusXM Talk Host Dean Obeidallah Wins $4.1 Million Judgement from Neo-Nazi. Yesterday (6/12), a judge ordered Daily Stormer founder Andrew Anglin to pay $4.1 million to comic and SiriusXM talk show host Dean Obeidallah. The judgement was for damages after Anglin was found guilty of defamation for publishing a story that falsely connected Obeidallah to an ISIS attack.  The Daily Beast reports that Anglin has been on the run for more than a year and did not testify at the trial.  Obeidallah may never see a penny of the judgment but says that if he does, it will be donated to “organizations that fight hate and bigotry.”

2020 Presidential Election/Trump’s Foreign Intel Controversy, Democrats’ Impeachment Talk, Middle East Oil Tanker Attacks, Hong Kong Protests, Memphis Violence, and Blues Win Stanley Cup Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (6/12). The Democrats vying to challenge President Trump in 2020 and the president’s statement that he would want to hear about dirt on an opponent even if it came from a foreign source; the Democrats’ intensifying chatter about impeaching President Trump; the attacks on two oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman; the violent protests in Hong Kong over China’s new extradition law; the protests in Memphis after the fatal police shooting of a suspect; and the St. Louis Blues beat the Boston Bruins to win their first Stanley Cup were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

WPG, Atlantic City Morning Mainstay Harry Hurley Is This Week’s Guest on Harrison Podcast.  The man who has been waking up South Jersey listeners from 6:00 am to 10:00 am on heritage talk station WPG-AM/W238CZ, Atlantic City for more than a quarter century, Harry Hurley, is this week’s guest on the award-winning PodcastOne series, “The Michael Harrison Interview.”  Hurley is about to be honored with the very first New Jersey Broadcaster of the Year Award at the forthcoming New Jersey Broadcasters Association (NJBA) convention this week on Thursday (6/13) at Atlantic City’s Tropicana Hotel.  Hurley, who also serves as the lead FOX News Radio substitute host, is a past recipient of the TALKERS Humanitarian of the Year Award for his remarkable philanthropic work in raising more than $800,000 over the past dozen years via his Hurley in the Morning Charity and distributing it to hundreds of worthy causes and organizations in Atlantic City and across the Garden State. Harrison and Hurley – who is positioned this year at number 51 on the TALKERS “Heavy Hundred” list of the Most Important Radio Talk Show Hosts in America – discuss the state of politics, media, journalism, and popular culture in a fascinating conversation that dives deep into the workings and thought-processes attendant to executing today’s talk show.  Don’t miss it!  To listen to the podcast in its entirety, please click here or click on the player box marked “The Michael Harrison Interview” located in the right-hand column of the TALKERS email newsletter or on every page of Talkers.com.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. Programming pro Kelly Mac is named program director for Cumulus Media’s urban adult contemporary KTCX, Beaumont, Texas “Magic 102.5.”  She says, “It’s an honor to rejoin forces with the Cumulus family and I look forward to expanding the KTCX team and brand.  As a big fan of Cumulus’ new programming initiatives, I look forward to exercising my creativity and programming experience in this exciting new role.”  During her almost 20-year career, she won a Marconi Award from the NAB for “Personality of the Year” while with WJMZ, Greenville, South Carolina…..At non-profit triple A WYMS-FM “88Nine Radio Milwaukee,” membership manager Maggie Corry is promoted to development director. Station executive director Glenn Kleiman says, “We’re so excited to be promoting Maggie to this position. She is so smart and skilled, and fun to work with. Her education, experience elsewhere and impressive performance at ‘Radio Milwaukee’ made this decision relatively easy.  Can’t wait to see how she helps us grow.”…..iHeartMedia’s Philadelphia hip hop outlet WUSL “Power 99” is launching the first of three of its annual “Peace on the Street Jams” – a series of anti-violence live events and activities designed to promote peace and provide communities with the necessary resources to prevent violence.  The event will include live music, spoken-word performances, and resource tables from community-based organizations.  Power 99’s first “Peace on the Street” event will take place at Great Plaza at Penn’s Landing on Thursday, June 13 from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm and will feature Calboy, LightskinKeisha, and DJ Diamond Kuts and Friends. iHM Philadelphia director of news and community affairs Loraine Ballard Morrill says, “Philadelphia is experiencing a sharp spike in gun related deaths.  There’s never been a better time to promote the message of Peace on our Streets than now.  ‘Power 99’ helps give voice to those who are working hard to end the cycle of violence impacting our communities.  ‘Power 99’ is working closely with community based organizations to help make our neighborhoods safer.”

Takeaways from Round Two of Nielsen Audio’s May PPM Survey. May 2019 ratings information has been released for Washington (D.C.), Boston, Miami, Seattle, Detroit, Phoenix, Minneapolis, San Diego, Tampa, Denver, Baltimore, and St. Louis. Nielsen Audio’s May 2019 survey period covered April 25 – May 22. See all the 6+ numbers from subscribing stations here.  Meanwhile, managing editor Mike Kinosian (Kinosian@TALKERS.com) provides his “Takeaways” from all 12 of these PPM markets.

Washington, DC

Spoken-Word Formats – Three straight improvements by WMAL resulted in a collective +2.5 (4.3 – 5.7 – 6.6 – 6.8, 6+). That streak culminated with March’s 6.8 – the Cumulus Media news/talker’s best 6+-stat in the PPM-era. In April/May, however, WMAL has surrendered 64% (-1.6) of that increase (6.8 – 5.5 – 5.2, 6+) but stays in fifth-place. After posting a .2 (6+) in August 2018, Radio One’s WOL “News Talk – Where Information Is Power” is unlisted for the tenth sweep in succession.

A combined +.9 in March/April (3.0 – 3.1 – 3.9, 6+), Entercom sports talk WJFK-FM “106.7 The Fan” relinquishes eight-tenths in May as the Nationals flagship fades from the top ten (#9 to #16). Radio One’s similarly-formatted WTEM “980 The Team” is up a combined three-tenths in March/April/May (.5 – .7 – .8 – .8, 6+), climbing from #23 to #22.

Notwithstanding it is without an increase the fourth month in a row for an overall -1.7 (10.4 – 9.8 – 9.7 – 8.7 – 8.7, 6+), Hubbard Broadcasting all-news WTOP is #1 for the fifth straight time; it shared the lead in April. January 2019’s 10.4 is its best 6+-performance since March 2018 (10.4, as well). Entercom business news WDCH returns the one-tenth it added in April (.4 – .5 – .4, 6+) and is flat at #25.

With a February 2019 through May 2019 topline of 8.6 – 8.9 – 8.7 – 8.4 (6+), American University-owned news/talk WAMU moves from a first-place tie with WTOP to the runner-up slot. Prior to gaining three-tenths in March, “The Mind Is Our Medium” was -2.2 (“Holiday” 2018); +2.5 (January 2019); and -1.2 (February).

Washington, DC Music Formats – As noted in yesterday’s “Takeaways” column (Wednesday, 6/12), Cumulus Media sold New York City hot AC WPLJ and Atlanta news/talk WYAY to Educational Media Foundation, which has converted those two stations to contemporary Christian. The same scenario exists in the Nation’s Capital regarding hot AC WRQX “Mix 107.3 More Music – More Variety” (now WLVW “Positive & Encouraging K-Love”). In its final sweep before the hot AC-to-contemporary Christian transition, “Mix” adds six-tenths (3.5 – 4.1, 6+) and goes out as a top ten station (#11 to #8). Its January 2019 through May 2019 topline is 3.5 – 4.1 – 3.5 – 3.5 – 4.1 (6+). In addition to being up six-tenths via three straight gains (3.0 – 3.1 – 3.3 – 3.6, 6+), Entercom rhythmic CHR WPGC enters the top ten (#14 to #10). Progressing from #14 to #11, iHeartMedia-owned WMZQ “98.7 Today’s Best Country” gains seven-tenths through three consecutive improvements (2.8 – 3.1 – 3.3 – 3.5, 6+). Ever since surfacing in print in January, Maryland-licensed Manning Broadcasting classic hits-oldies WWEG “106.9 The Eagle” has notched four straight up or flat trends (.6 – .9 – .9 – .9 – 1.0, #20 to #19, 6+). Faltering by six-tenths each are Radio One urban contemporary WKYS (4.0 – 3.4, #8 to #12, 6+) and gospel cluster-mate WPRS “Praise 104.1 – DC’s Station for Inspiration” (2.2, #17 to #18, 6+). Prior to April 2019’s 4.0 (6+), the last time WKYS wasn’t in 3.0 – 3.9 range (6+) was May 2017 (2.9). Regarding “Praise,” its decrease curtails four consecutive up or flat trends that netted nine-tenths (1.9 – 2.1 – 2.5 – 2.5 – 2.8, 6+). Another positive streak concludes as Atlantic Gateway Communications contemporary Christian WGTS, an overall +1.8 via four positive spikes in a row (3.5 – 3.6 – 3.9 – 4.6 – 5.3, 6+), is off one-tenth to 5.2 (6+). Nonetheless, “91.9 Christian Music Radio” moves from sixth to a fifth-place tie. WGTS wiped away four straight September 2018 through “Holiday” 2018 declines that resulted in a -1.4 (4.9 – 4.5 – 4.0 – 3.8 – 3.5, 6+). Six successive increases by WMMJ yielded a +1.8 (6.4 – 6.7 – 6.8 – 7.4 – 7.5 – 7.9 – 8.2, 6+), but “Majic” is off by one-half share in April/May (8.2 – 7.8 – 7.7, 6+). Even so, the Radio One urban AC is anchored at #3 for the sixth time in a row. After dropping one-tenth in back-to-back reports (6.5 – 6.4 – 6.3, 6+), Howard University’s similarly-programmed WHUR regains that deficit with a May pickup of two-tenths to 6.5 and repeats in fourth-place. Its March loss of one-tenth suspended three successive increases that accounted for a +1.2 (5.3 – 6.2 – 6.4 – 6.5, 6+).

Boston

Spoken-Word Formats – With an overall gain of six-tenths in five successive up or flat trends (2.1 – 2.2 – 2.2 – 2.4 – 2.5 – 2.7, 6+), iHeartMedia news/talk WRKO “AM 680 – The Voice of Boston” elevates from #14 to #12. November 2018’s 3.2 is its best 6+-stat in more than four years (3.3, November 2014). Co-owned WXKS-AM “Talk 1200,” however, is down or flat the fourth straight time (.6 – .5 – .4 – .4 – .4, 6+) and continues at #27.

Three straight down or flat trends by Beasley Media Group-owned WBZ-FM resulted in an overall -1.0 (7.2 – 6.4 – 6.4 – 6.2, 6+) but “98.5 The Sports Hub” roars back with a May uptick of eight-tenths (7.0, 6+) and is anchored in third-place. Seven recent fluctuations for the key station of the Stanley Cup runner-up Bruins (as well as the Celtics and Super Bowl champion New England Patriots) include +.9 (October 2018); +.8 (November); -1.0 (December); +.5 (“Holiday” 2018); +1.6 (January 2019); -.8 (February); and +.8 (May). Meanwhile, WEEI-FM, the flagship of the 2018 World Series champion Boston Red Sox, has gained a combined eight-tenths in April/May (3.2 – 3.8 – 4.0, 6+) and advances from tenth to eighth. The Entercom-owned sports talk outlet has been -.5 (September 2018); +.5 (October); +.6 (November); -2.0 (December); -.7 (“Holiday” 2018); +1.7 (January 2019); -1.0 (February); -.5 (March); and +.6 (April).

For the third month in succession, iHeartMedia-owned news-talk hybrid WBZ-AM logs a 5.0 (6+) and carries on in sixth-place. “News Radio 1030” was +1.3 in January/February (4.3 – 5.5 – 5.6, 6+).

In three slips in a row, WBUR eroded by -2.4 (5.7 – 4.6 – 4.1 – 3.3, 6+), but the Boston University news/talk operation picks up two-tenths in May to 3.5 (flat at #11, 6+). Off seven-tenths in March/April (2.7 – 2.2 – 2.0, 6+), WGBH Educational Foundation news/talk WGBH erases roughly half that shortfall (2.4, +.4, 6+) and progresses from #19 to #15.

Boston Music Formats – Not only does iHeartMedia-owned CHR WXKS-FM post a one-half share increase (7.1 – 7.6, 6+), “Kiss 108 – Boston’s #1 Hit Music Station” marches from the runner-up slot to a first-place tie. Moreover, this (7.6) is its strongest 6+-performance since August 2018’s 7.8. In two-share range for the 19th time in a row, Entercom’s similarly-formatted WODS “103.3 Amp Radio” is down or flat the fourth straight time for a net loss of four-tenths (2.5 – 2.4 – 2.4 – 2.2 – 2.1, #16 to #19, 6+). “Kiss,” meanwhile, shares the lead with Beasley Media Group classic hits-oldies WROR “105.7 – 80s & More,” which drops two-tenths to 7.6 (6+), thus snapping at four a consecutive string of up or flat trends that netted a +2.2 (5.6 – 6.2 – 6.8 – 7.8 – 7.8, 6+). Boston’s (6+) pacesetters thus far this calendar year have been: WXKS-FM (January, 7.3, 6+); WXKS-FM (February, 7.4, 6+); WROR (March, 7.8, 6+); WROR (April, 7.8, 6+); and WROR and WXKS-FM (May, 7.6, 6+). Beasley Media Group rhythmic hot AC WBQT “Hot 96.9,” which was a combined +1.1 in March/April (3.2 – 4.0 – 4.3, 6+), surrenders seven-tenths to 3.6 (eighth to tenth, 6+). A cumulative +1.3 in four straight bumps (3.5 – 3.6 – 3.7 – 4.2 – 4.8, 6+), co-owned WKLB “Country 102.5” forfeits four-tenths to 4.4 (6+) but continues in seventh-place. By gaining one-tenth in January, WKLB pulled the plug on seven successive down or flat reports that accounted for a combined -1.2 (4.7 – 4.5 – 4.3 – 4.2 – 3.8 – 3.8 – 3.7 – 3.5, 6+). While the positive streak for “Country 102.5” concludes, iHeartMedia-owned WBWL “101.7 The Bull Boston’s #1 For New Hit Country” hasn’t had a loss in each of the last six sweeps for a net gain of six-tenths (1.8 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 1.9 – 2.2 – 2.4, 6+), climbing from #16 to #15. This (2.4) is the highest 6+-share for “The Bull” since July 2018’s 2.5. Extending into “Beantown” from Worcester (40 miles to the west), Cumulus Media hot AC WXLO “104.5 XLO” is up seven-tenths in five successive positive or flat trends (1.3 – 1.6 – 1.6 – 1.9 – 2.0 – 2.0, 6+) and logs its best 6+-stat since November 2014 (2.0, as well). After registering a 14.5 (6+) in “Holiday” 2018, Entercom adult contemporary WMJX “Magic 106.7 – Today’s Hits/Yesterday’s Favorites” has a January 2019 through May 2019 topline of 6.1 – 6.3 – 6.4 – 6.1 – 6.2 (steady at #4, 6+). Dropping from #16 to #18, iHeartMedia rhythmic CHR WJMN “JAM’N 94.5” falters by a collective nine-tenths in four straight down or flat moves (3.1 – 2.8 – 2.3 – 2.2 – 2.2, 6+).

Miami

English-Language Spoken-Word Formats – While flat at #17, iHeartMedia news/talk WIOD “News Radio 620 – Miami’s News, Traffic, & Weather Station” slips one-tenth to 2.6 (6+), suspending four consecutive sweeps without a loss that yielded a one-half share gain (2.2 – 2.4 – 2.4 – 2.5 – 2.7, 6+).

In six straight positive or flat sweeps, Entercom’s WAXY “Sports Talk 790 The Ticket” nets three-tenths (.6 – .6 – .6 – .7 – .7 – .8 – .9, 6+) and remains at #25. The January 2019 through May 2019 topline for co-owned WQAM “Sports Radio 560” is .6 – .5 – .7 – .5 – .6 (steady at #29, 6+). An increase of two-tenths in March ended three consecutive down or flat sweeps that led to a loss of four-tenths (.9 – .9 – .6 – .5, 6+).

Backsliding from a tie at #19 to #20, Dade County School Board news/talk WLRN is up two-tenths in three straight up or flat reports (2.1 – 2.2 – 2.3 – 2.3, 6+).

Miami Music Formats – Entering the May sweep with a fairly constant December 2018 through April 2019 topline of 2.9 – 2.9 – 2.9 – 2.5 – 2.6 – 2.5 (6+), iHeartMedia-owned CHR WHYI “Y-100 Miami’s #1 Hit Music Station” improves by one-half share to 3.0 (#18 to #15, 6+). When “Y-100” added one-tenth in March, it curtailed five straight reports without an increase for a collective loss of nine-tenths (3.4 – 3.3 – 2.9 – 2.9 – 2.9 – 2.5, 6+). Cox Media Group’s similarly-formatted WFLC “Hits 97.3” repeats April 2019’s 6+ share (3.5) and market rank (tenth). “Hits 97.3” responded to March’s one-tenth loss with an April increase of six-tenths. Prior to slipping to 2.9 (6+, March 2019), WFLC had been within 3.0 – 3.7 range (6+) in each of the previous 15 survey periods. WFLC and WHYI are separated by one-half share (6+) in May, compared to one full-share in April, and three-tenths in March. By gaining four-tenths to 5.5 (sixth to fifth, 6+), Spanish Broadcasting System’s WCMQ “Zeta 92.3” suspends four successive down or flat moves that resulted in a -1.0 (6.1 – 5.8 – 5.7 – 5.7 – 5.1, 6+). Albeit a combined -.6 in April/May (7.4 – 7.3 – 6.8, 6+), Cox Media Group-owned adult contemporary WFEZ “Easy 93.1” is #1 for the fifth consecutive ratings period (including a three-way tie at #1 in February). Its March increase of eight-tenths completely wiped away February’s decline of that magnitude (7.4 – 6.6 – 7.4, 6+). Entering the “Holiday” 2018 sweep, “Easy 93.1” finished on top seven straight times. For the third month in a row, Entercom’s similarly-formatted WLYF is in third-place; however, “101.5 Lite FM” has lost an overall one-half share in March/April/May (6.6 – 6.2 – 6.2 – 6.1, 6+). “Lite FM” notched its best 6+-stat (7.3, “Holiday” 2018) since January 2018’s 7.4. Adult contemporary outlets “Easy” and “Lite” traded places with each other in January, as WFEZ went from second to first and WLYF segued from first to second. Consequently, an adult contemporary controls or has a share of Miami’s lead position (6+) for the 13th straight ratings period. After notching a +1.0 in four straight bumps (4.2 – 4.5 – 4.9 – 5.1 – 5.2, 6+), Entercom classic hits-oldies WMXJ “102.7 The Beach” forfeits four-tenths to 4.8 (fifth to sixth, 6+). Flat at #7, iHeartMedia Spanish contemporary WZTU “Tu 94.9” sputters by -1.0 in three straight drops (5.1 – 4.8 – 4.7 – 4.1, 6+) with 4.1 its lowest 6+-share since August 2018’s 3.9. Even though Spanish Broadcasting System Spanish tropical WXDJ is off eight-tenths in March/April/May (4.9 – 4.8 – 4.1 – 4.1, 6+), “El Zol 106.7” advances from #9 to a three-way tie at #7. Spanish contemporary sibling WRMA “Ritmo 95.7” is off six-tenths in March/April/May (3.4 – 3.3 – 2.8 – 2.8, 6+) but remains at #16. Cox Media Group urban contemporary WEDR “99 Jamz” is a collective -1.1 through four straight declines (5.2 – 4.7 – 4.5 – 4.4 – 4.1, 6+) yet manages to climb from eighth to a three-way logjam at seventh. Its format challenger, iHeartMedia-owned WMIB “103.5 The Beat,” drops three-tenths in April/May (2.9 – 2.9 – 2.6, #14 to #17, 6+).

Seattle

Spoken-Word Formats – Following its February 2019 posting of 5.9 (6+), Bonneville news/talk KIRO-FM has a March through May topline of 4.8 – 4.8 – 4.9 (fourth to fifth, 6+). KIRO-FM was a combined +1.0 in January/February (4.9 – 5.6 – 5.9, 6+). As a result of three straight down or flat trends, co-owned KTTH “Conservative Talk Radio” has lost roughly 43% (-.9) of its 6+-stat (2.1 – 1.4 – 1.2 – 1.2, 6+). It continues at #23 where it is again tied with Sinclair Broadcast Group-owned KVI “Talk Radio 570,” which falters by four-tenths in March/April/May (1.6 – 1.3 – 1.2 – 1.2, 6+).

In March/April, Bonneville’s KIRO-AM more than doubled (+2.2) its 6+-stat (2.1 – 2.9 – 4.3, 6+), but “ESPN 710” surrenders nine-tenths in May as the Mariners’ flagship drifts from the top ten (#6 to #13).

Down one-tenth in back-to-back sweeps (1.4 – 1.3 – 1.2, 6+), iHeartMedia-owned KJR-AM “Seattle’s Sports Radio 950” slips from #22 to #23.

Even though KOMO is off four-tenths in April/May (3.1 – 2.8 – 2.7, 6+) the Sinclair Broadcast Group all-news operation improves from #18 to a tie at #17.

One-tenth of a share separates May 2019’s top three Seattle finishers. Heading up that trio is Northwest Public Radio news/talk KUOW, which bounces back from March/April’s massive combined -2.3 with a gain of four-tenths to 6.1 (6+), progressing from second to first. KUOW was a combined +2.1 in January/February (5.9 – 7.4 – 8.0, 6+) and shifted to #2 in April after three months in a row at #1.

Seattle Music Formats – As a result of six straight positive spikes (3.7 – 3.9 – 4.4 – 4.5 – 4.8 – 5.6 – 6.0, 6+), iHeartMedia-owned KZOK “102.5 Seattle’s Classic Rock Station” amasses a +2.3, advancing from third to a second-place tie. Immediately prior to this run, KZOK was -1.6 in four consecutive ratings periods without an increase (5.3 – 5.1 – 4.9 – 4.9 – 3.7, 6+). It’s a strong sweep for the market’s two main country players as Entercom’s KKWF “100.7 The Wolf – #1 For Country” posts a +.9 (4.1 – 5.0, eighth to fourth) and Hubbard Broadcasting’s KNUC “New Country 98.9 The Bull” improves by one-half share propelling it into the top ten (#13 to #10). Prior to April, when it regressed by six-tenths, “The Wolf” was a cumulative +1.4 as a result of three straight upticks (3.3- 4.3 – 4.5 – 4.7, 6+). “The Bull” records its sixth successive up or flat sweep and has nearly doubled (+1.9) its 6+ AQH share in that stretch (2.1 – 2.1 – 2.4 – 2.8 – 3.3 – 3.5 – 4.0, 6+). Ever since it surfaced in print in February, Hubbard Broadcasting adult standards KIXI “AM 880” has almost doubled (+.6) its 6+-stat (.7 – .7 – .7 – 1.3, 6+) and checks in at #22. It’s good news/bad news for Entercom-owned KISW “Rock 99.9,” which gains one-half share (4.0 – 4.5, 6+) and cracks the top ten (#11 to #7), but displays an identical magnitude loss for its internet stream (.7 – .2, #31, 6+). Faltering by six-tenths each are Hubbard Broadcasting CHR KQMV “MOViN’ 92.5 – Seattle’s #1 Hit Music Station,” which segues from first to second, and Classic Radio, Inc.-owned KING “98.1 Listener-Supported Classical Music” (#15 to #19). “MOViN’” is a collective -1.0 in four successive down or flat trends (7.0 – 6.8 – 6.8 – 6.6 – 6.0, 6+). April marked the first time it reached #1 since November 2018. The four most recent shifts for KING are +.9 (February); -.5 (March); +.7 (April) and now -.6 in May (3.1 – 2.5, 6+). Its October 2018 through January 2019 topline was a consistent 2.2 – 2.1 – 2.2 – 2.0 – 2.0 (6+). Departing the top ten (#8 to #12) is Entercom alternative KNDD “107.7 The End,” which is a collective -1.1 via four straight sweeps without an increase (4.7 – 4.3 – 4.3 – 4.1 – 3.6, 6+). Sinclair Broadcast Group hot AC KPLZ “Star 101.5 Today’s Best Mix” is a collective -2.2 in five straight sweeps without an increase (5.1 – 3.8 – 3.7 – 3.1 – 3.1 – 2.9, #15 to #16, 6+). Separated by one-tenth are Entercom adult contemporary KSWD “94.1 The Sound” (4.1 – 4.5, +.4, a three-way tie at #8 to #7, 6+) and Hubbard Broadcasting’s similarly-formatted KRWM “Warm 106.9” (4.8 – 4.4, -.4, fourth to ninth, 6+). “The Sound” was an overall +1.5 through three consecutive increases (3.7 – 3.8 – 5.1 – 5.2, 6+) before eroding by -1.1 in April. Prior to the May sweep, “Warm 106.9” recorded a 4.8 (6+) in three of the previous four reports (4.8 – 4.0 – 4.8 – 4.8, 6+) and was #1 in December and “Holiday” 2018.

Detroit

Spoken-Word Formats – In four straight months without an increase, Cumulus Media’s WJR “News Talk 760” has lost six-tenths (3.7 – 3.5 – 3.5 – 3.5 – 3.1, #15 to #16, 6+).

Anchored in sixth-place, Entercom sports talk WXYT-FM“97.1 The Ticket” repeats April’s 5.4 (6+); the Tigers flagship was locked on 5.0 (6+) in February and March.

Even though co-owned WWJ advances by one-tenth May to 6.2 (6+), “News Radio 950” backslides from a three-way tie at #2 to #4. WWJ plummeted by eight-tenths in both March and April (7.7 – 6.9 – 6.1, 6+) and had a March-only stay in first-place.

Michigan Public Media news/talk WUOM drops one-tenth (1.6 – 1.5, 6+) but remains at #20. May’s -.1 ends four consecutive fluctuations of three-tenths (1.6 – 1.9 – 1.6 – 1.3 – 1.6, 6+). Down a collective four-tenths in three straight (slight) declines (1.5 – 1.4 – 1.3 – 1.1, 6+), Wayne State University news/talk WDET slips from #21 to #22.

Detroit Music Formats – Over and above being +1.4 through three successive bumps (5.5 – 6.0 – 6.1 – 6.9, 6+), iHeartMedia urban AC WMXD “Mix 92.3” marches from a three-way tie at #2 to #1. There’s good news as well for Radio One-owned format foe WDMK, which is +1.0 in four straight improvements (2.7 – 2.8 – 2.9 – 3.2 – 3.7, 6+); “105.9 Kiss-FM” jumps from #16 to #13. Furthermore, “Kiss” has its best 6+-stat since June 2018 (3.7, as well). The station “Mix” succeeds at #1, Beasley Media Group-owned WCSX “94.7 – Detroit’s Classic Rock,” is without an increase the third month in succession for a -1.4 (7.8 – 6.5 – 6.4 – 6.4, 6+) and segues from first to third. In March, WCSX eroded by -1.3 to shift from first to second. Its March/April decline of -1.5 followed back-to-back gains of nine-tenths (6.0 – 6.9 – 7.8, 6+). “Detroit’s Classic Rock” spent four straight months at #1 before being dislodged in September 2018. Skidding from #13 to #15, iHeartMedia urban contemporary WJLB “97.9 – Detroit’s Hip-Hop and R&B” falters by eight-tenths in April/May (4.1 – 3.9 – 3.3, 6+). In early-November (2018), Entercom flipped CHR WDZH “Amp Radio” to adult contemporary “98.7 The Breeze.” Despite the fact it is an overall +1.8 in seven successive reports without a loss (2.3 – 2.7 – 2.7 – 2.9 – 3.6 – 4.0 – 4.0 – 4.1, 6+), “The Breeze” backslides from #11 to #12. After its 6+ AQH share eroded by nearly two-thirds (-11.8) the past four sweeps (17.9 – 7.1 – 6.6 – 6.2 – 6.1, 6+), iHeartMedia’s similarly-formatted WNIC “The Best Variety of the ‘80s, ‘90s, & Today” answers with a May increase of four-tenths to 6.5 (6+) and remains at #2. Its “Holiday” 2018 17.9 is by far the largest 6+ AQH share by any Detroit station in the PPM-era. On top in December 2018 and “Holiday” 2018, WNIC more than tripled (+12.2) its 6+-share via four straight increases (5.7 – 6.2 – 6.6 – 12.2 – 17.9, 6+). Not only is Cumulus Media country outlet WDRQ a collective +1.0 through three consecutive positive spikes (1.6 – 1.9 – 2.4 – 2.6, #18 to #17, 6+), “93.1 Nash FM” posts its best 6+-topline (2.6, 6+) since June 2018’s 2.8; WDRQ was down six-tenths in February. It is chasing Entercom-owned WYCD “99.5 – Detroit Country Music,” which regains the two-tenths it squandered in April (5.1 – 4.9 – 5.1, 6+) and continues in eighth-place. As was the case with “Nash FM,” WYCD regressed by six-tenths in February. Unchanged at #9, Beasley Media Group’s WRIF “Rocks Detroit” sputters by -1.5 in four successive down or flat sweeps (6.0 – 5.9 – 4.9 – 4.5 – 4.5, 6+).

Phoenix

Spoken-Word Formats – With a March 2019 through May 2019 topline of 4.1 – 4.2 – 4.0 (6+), Bonneville news/talk KTAR-FM slips from eighth to tenth. After posting a 2.6 (6+) in consecutive reports (March and April), iHeartMedia’s KFYI “News Talk 550” notches a one-half share gain to 3.1 (#17 to #14, 6+).

Bonneville sports talk KMVP-FM “98.7 Arizona Sports” enjoys its third straight gain for a collective +1.1 (2.0 – 2.3 – 2.4 – 3.1, 6+) as the Arizona Diamondbacks flagship leaps from #20 to #14 with its strongest 6+showing since September 2018 (3.1, as well).

This is the third sweep in succession that KJZZ has a fluctuation of one-tenth (3.6 – 3.5 – 3.4 – 3.5, 6+). The Maricopa County Community College news/talk outlet, a combined +1.1 in January/February (2.5 – 3.2 – 3.6, 6+), remains at #12.

Phoenix Music Formats – April’s loss of six-tenths by Entercom rhythmic CHR KALV curtailed three successive up or flat sweeps that accounted for a gain of nine-tenths (3.0 – 3.4 – 3.5 – 3.6 – 3.9, 6+). In the May sweep, however, “Live 101.5” roars back with an increase twice the magnitude of that April setback and rockets back into the top ten (3.3 – 4.5, +1.2, #13 to #7, 6+). A combined +1.0 in April/May (4.0 – 4.1 – 5.0, 6+), classic hits-oldies sibling KOOL “94.5 Phoenix Classic Hits” advances from ninth to fifth. Up one-half share (2.8 – 3.3, 6+), Entravision regional Mexican KLNZ “La Tricolor 103.5” moves from #16 to #13. An April +1.2 by  Hubbard Broadcasting’s KSLX fully expunged its January – February – March -1.2 (6.5 – 5.4 – 5.3 6+). Even though “Classic Rock 100.7” regresses by four-tenths in May (6.5 – 6.1, 6+), it proceeds from second to first. Ousted from the top spot and tumbling to third is iHeartMedia adult hits KYOT “95.5 The Mountain – We Play Everything,” whose five latest shifts are -1.2 (“Holiday” 2018); +1.6 (January/February); -.8 (March); +.7 (April) and -1.2 in May (6.6 – 5.4, 6+). “The Mountain” had been at #1 the past three ratings periods. Logging decreases of one-half share each are Educational Radio regional Mexican KNAI “101.9 La Campesina” (2.9 – 2.4, #15 to #19, 6+) and Hubbard Broadcasting-owned KDKB “Alt 93.3 Arizona’s Alternative” (3.5 – 3.0, #11 to #16, 6+). When “La Campesina” dropped eight-tenths in April, it halted three successive improvements that yielded a collective nine-tenths (2.8 – 3.1 – 3.2 – 3.7, 6+). Heading into the March 2019 survey period, iHeartMedia’s KNIX notched a collective gain of one-half share via five consecutive survey periods without a loss (4.6 – 4.7 – 4.7 – 4.7 – 5.0 – 5.1, 6+), but “102.5 Today’s Best Country” is now off nine tenths in three straight decreases (5.1 – 4.5 – 4.3 – 4.2, seventh to eighth, 6+).

Minneapolis

Spoken-Word Formats – Tacking on four-tenths to April’s robust +1.5 (3.3 – 4.8 – 5.2, 6+), Entercom-owned Twins flagship WCCO “News Radio 830” repeats at #8. A combined +1.2 in January/February (2.2 – 3.3 – 3.4, 6+), Hubbard Broadcasting news/talk KTMY “My Talk 107.1” follows with three straight decreases for a net loss of seven-tenths (3.4  – 3.2 – 2.9 – 2.7, #13 to #14, 6+). In four straight down or flat trends (3.3 – 3.3 – 2.8 – 2.6 – 2.4, #16 to #17, 6+), iHeartMedia’s KTLK “Twin Cities News Talk AM 1130” has lost nine-tenths.

Answering April’s dip of nine-tenths with a May increase of two-tenths (4.8 – 3.9 – 4.1, 6+), iHeartMedia sports talk KFXN “Sports Radio 100.3 K-Fan” remains at #12. After logging four successive up or flat reports for a net gain of two-tenths (.6 – .7 – .7 – .7 – .8, 6+), Hubbard Broadcasting sports talk KSTP-AM “ESPN 1500” returns one-tenth (.7, flat at #24, 6+).

A combined -.4 in April/May (4.7 – 4.6 – 4.3, 6+), Minnesota Public Radio news/talk KNOW exits the top ten (#10 to #11).

Minneapolis Music Formats – After roughly 54% (-6.8) of its 6+ AQH share evaporated through four straight negative or flat trends (12.6 – 6.3 – 6.3 – 6.3 – 5.8, 6+), iHeartMedia-owned classic hits-oldies outlet KQQL not only busts out a +1.0 to 6.8 (6+), “Kool 108” zooms from fifth to a first-place tie. Co-occupying the penthouse is Cumulus Media-owned KQRS “Minnesota’s Classic Rock,” which is +1.3 in three straight upticks (5.5 – 5.6 – 6.7 – 6.8, second to a first-place tie 6+). Prior to April’s 6.7, KQRS had been within five-share range (6+) in each of the previous 13 sweeps. This (6.8) is the best 6+-stat for “Minnesota’s Classic Rock” since December 2016’s 6.9. Unchanged at #7, Entercom adult hits KZJK “104.1 Jack-FM Playing What We Want” improves by seven-tenths (5.0 – 5.7, 6+). Up six-tenths, Cumulus Media rocker KXXR “93-X” has a February 2019 through May 2019 topline of 6.2 – 5.9 – 5.6 – 6.2 (sixth to fourth, 6+). The Twin Cities’ (6+) hot AC share escalated by +3.1 (January); deflated by -1.3 (February); improved by +.8 (March); was +1.0 in April; and tumbles by -1.0 in May. The brunt of the decline is absorbed by Hubbard Broadcasting’s KSTP-FM “KS-95,” which not only falters by eight-tenths (7.5 – 6.7, 6+), it shifts from first to third. This calendar year, “KS-95” has been +1.9 (January); -.8 (February); +.6 (March); +.5 (April); and -.8 (May). Meanwhile, iHeartMedia-owned/similarly-programmed KTCZ “Cities 97.1” surrenders two-tenths (4.7 – 4.5, ninth to tenth, 6+). Shifts this calendar year for “Cities 97.1” include +1.2 (January) -.5 (February); +.2 (March); +.5 (April); and -.2 (May). Following three straight positive spikes that led to a collective +1.9 (4.6 – 5.2 – 5.6 – 6.5, 6+), University of Northwestern St. Paul contemporary Christian KTIS-FM forfeits four-tenths to 6.1 (third to fifth, 6+). In April, “Twin Cities Christian Radio – Always Uplifting” reached the six-share threshold (6.5, 6+) for the first time since January 2016’s 6.4. Albeit flat at #13, Entercom’s country-formatted KMNB is without an increase the fourth time in a row with “102.9 The Wolf” losing eight-tenths in that timeframe (3.7 – 3.4 – 2.9 – 2.9 – 2.9, 6+).

San Diego

Spoken-Word Formats – Three straight increases by iHeartMedia news/talk KOGO account for a +1.0 (4.0 – 4.2 – 4.4 – 5.0, 6+) as “News Radio 600” jumps from eighth to sixth; KOGO was down four-tenths in February. Tegna news/talk KFMB-AM “AM 760,” which was an overall +.9 via four successive increases (1.6 – 1.9 – 2.0 – 2.4 – 2.5, 6+), has that streak snapped with a loss of two-tenths to 2.3 (6+) yet improves from #18 to #17. The (ultra-consistent) December 2018 through May 2019 San Diego topline for iHeartMedia Los Angeles’ similarly-formatted KFI “AM 640” is: 1.2 – 1.2 – 1.2 – 1.1 – 1.2 -1.0 – 1.1 (#23 to #22, 6+).

The flagship of the Padres – Entercom-owned KWFN– triples (+1.4) its 6+ AQH share in three straight bumps (.7 – .9 – 1.7 – 2.1, 6+) as “97.3 The Fan” cracks the top twenty (#21 to #19). At the same time, iHeartMedia’s KLSD “Fox Sports 1360 San Diego’s Sports Station” nets six-tenths via three consecutive improvements (.4 – .5 – .8 – 1.0, #25 to #24, 6+).

On the heels of April’s mammoth -1.7 (7.7 – 6.0, 6+), San Diego State University-owned news/talk KPBS erases roughly half the deficit with a May gain of nine-tenths to 6.9 (6+) and sets the pace for the fifth month in a row. Prior to April’s loss, KPBS notched three straight gains resulting in a +2.6 (5.1 – 7.2 – 7.5 – 7.7, 6+).

San Diego Music Formats – Repeating in the runner-up slot, Entercom classic hits-oldies KXSN “Sunny 98.1 – San Diego’s Greatest Hits” is a collective +1.3 in three successive improvements (4.7 – 5.0 – 5.9 – 6.0, 6+). Posting increases of six-tenths each are Local Media San Diego-programmed CHR XHTZ “Z-90.3 Today’s Hit Music” (tenth to eighth) and Entercom-owned KBZT “Alt 94.9 – San Diego’s Alternative” (#14 to #11). “Z-90.3” continues an alternating up/down pattern that commenced in “Holiday” 2018 (3.8 – 4.2 – 3.9 – 4.3 – 4.1 – 4.7, 6+), while “Alt 94.9” nets +1.1 in three upticks in succession (2.6 – 2.8 – 3.1 – 3.7, 6+). By notching a one-half share increase (2.0 – 2.5, 6+), Univision Radio Spanish adult hits KLQV “Amor 102.9” jumps from #20 to #16. A March positive spike of eight-tenths stymied three down or flat moves in a row that accounted for a collective loss of nine-tenths (2.9 – 2.8 – 2.8 – 2.0, 6+). Stuck on 5.8 (6+) in March and April, Entercom’s KSON “103.7 San Diego’s New Country” coughs up eight-tenths to 5.0 (6+) and drops from third to sixth. In the iHeartMedia cluster, CHR KHTS “Channel 93.3 – San Diego’s #1 Hit Music Station” is a combined +1.2 in three consecutive sweeps without a loss (4.3 – 4.8 – 5.5 – 5.5, fourth to third, 6+), directly after a cumulative -2.3 as a result of four straight decreases (6.6 – 6.0 – 4.6 – 4.5 – 4.3, 6+). Conversely, co-owned KGB “San Diego’s Classic Rock” is -1.5 in three drops in a row (5.9 – 5.3 – 4.5 – 4.4, seventh to tenth, 6+), following three consecutive improvements that yielded a +2.2 (3.7 – 3.8 – 4.5 – 5.9, 6+). While it stays within two-share range (6+) for the 11th consecutive ratings period, Imagen Informativa Spanish Contemporary XLTN “104.5 Radio Latina” forfeits six-tenths (2.9 – 2.3, #15 to #17, 6+). A combined +.7 in March/April (1.9 – 2.0 – 2.6, 6+), Local Media San Diego-programmed alternative XTRA-FM “91-X” returns one-half share to 2.1 (#17 to #19, 6+).

Tampa

Spoken-Word Formats – Three successive upticks by iHeartMedia-owned news/talk WFLA accounted for a +1.4 (3.1 – 3.6 – 4.3 – 4.5, 6+), but “970 Tampa Bay’s News Radio” plummets -1.5 in April/May (4.5 – 3.6 – 3.0, #13 to #14, 6+). Frozen on 2.9 (6+) in January and February, Cox Media Group news/talk WHPT “102.5 The Bone – Real, Raw, Radio” added two-tenths in March, but is off eight-tenths in April/May (3.1 – 2.5 – 2.3, #17 to #16, 6+).

An April bump of nine-tenths (1.7 – 2.6, 6+) by iHeartMedia-owned WDAE “620 Tampa Bay’s Sports Radio” is followed by a May decrease of four-tenths to 2.2 (6+) as the Rays’ flagship slips from #16 to #17.

In three straight declines, University of South Florida news/talk WUSF loses six-tenths (2.1 – 1.9 – 1.7 – 1.5, #19 – #20, 6+).

Tampa Music Formats – Three consecutive improvements yielding a collective +1.2 (3.2 – 3.4 – 3.5 – 4.4, 6+) propel iHeartMedia’s WXTB “98 Rock” into the top ten (#14 to #9). Albeit +1.3 in seven successive sweeps without a loss (3.1 – 3.2 – 3.6 – 3.7 – 4.2 – 4.2 – 4.3 – 4.4, 6+), urban contemporary cluster-mate WBTP “95.7 The Beat” backslides from a (conventional) tie at #8 to a three-way scrum at #9. The market’s two mainstream CHRs combine for a +.7 (6+), nearly equally divided between Cox Media Group’s WPOI “Hot 101.5 – Tampa Bay’s New Hit Music” (+.4 in May), which is +1.3 in three straight upticks (3.2 – 3.4 – 4.1 – 4.5, tenth to seventh, 6+), and iHeartMedia’s WFLZ “93.3 Tampa Bay’s #1 Hit Music Channel,” up three-tenths (4.0 – 4.3, #11 to #12, 6+). Frozen on 1.6 (6+) in March and April, Beasley Media Group classic rocker WPBB “98.7 The Shark” posts a one-half share increase to 2.1 (#20 to #18, 6+), its highest 6+-showing since “Holiday” 2018’s 4.6. Improving by one-half share as well is The Diocese of St. Petersburg-owned contemporary Christian WBVM “90.5 Spirit FM – Tampa Bay’s Hit Christian Music” which more than doubles (+.7) its 6+ AQH share in four straight sweeps without a loss (.5 – .6 – .7 – .7 – 1.2, #21, 6+). Owing to a May gain of three-tenths to 9.3 (6+), Cox Media Group adult contemporary WDUV applies the brakes to four straight negative trends that resulted in a -4.7 (13.7 – 11.8 – 11.6 – 10.6 – 9.0, 6+); “Lite Favorites” is #1 for the 81st straight time. April’s 9.0 is its lowest 6+-showing since October 2018’s 8.9 and halted its consecutive streak of reaching double-digits (6+) at five. WDUV’s January decrease interrupted three straight gains that netted +4.8 (8.9 – 9.7 – 10.8 – 13.7, 6+) and that 13.7 in “Holiday” 2018 is the highest 6+-stat for any Tampa station since WDUV’s 14.9 in “Holiday” 2015. Co-owned/similarly-formatted AC WWRM “Magic 94.9 – Tampa Bay’s Best Music,” a combined +.9 in March/April (5.3 – 5.9 – 6.2, 6+), surrenders eight-tenths in May to 5.4 (6+) but stays in third-place (as part of a three-way logjam). Also included in that scrum at #3 (up from #4) is Beasley Media Group classic hits-oldies WRBQ “Q-105,” which was +1.4 via three straight sweeps without a loss (4.7 – 4.9 – 6.1 – 6.1, 6+) but hands over half that bounty with a -.7 to 5.4 (6+). Its format rival – Cox Media Group’s WXGL “107.3 The Eagle – Tampa Bay’s Classic Hits” – repeats April’s 6+-share (6.6) and market rank (#2). “The Eagle” was +2.1 in April but then -.9 in April. Prior to the March report, “The Eagle” was an overall -1.5 in five successive sweeps without an increase (.9 – 6.6 – 6.0 – 5.7 – 5.4 – 5.4, 6+).

Denver

Spoken-Word Formats – Following April’s half-share increase, the flagship of the Colorado Rockies,  iHeartMedia news/talk KOA “Colorado’s News, Traffic, & Weather Station,” returns 60% of that increase (5.2 – 4.9, -.3, fifth to sixth, 6+). Co-owned KHOW “Talk Radio 630” has a “Holiday” 2018 through May 2019 topline of 1.1 – 1.4 – 1.4 – 1.1 – 1.3 – 1.3 (#24 to #23, 6+).

A collective -1.5 in three straight setbacks (4.1 – 3.3 – 2.9 – 2.6, 6+), Bonneville-owned KKFN “Sports Radio 104.3 The Fan” ends the slide with a +.4 to 3.0 (#17 to #16, 6+). KSE Radio Ventures’ KKSE-FM “Attitude Sports Radio 92.5” has nearly tripled (+.5) February’s 6+ stat in three consecutive bumps (.3 – .4 – .6 – .8, #27 to #26, 6+).

Even though Colorado Public Radio news/talk KCFR returns one-third of April’s +.9 with a May decrease of three-tenths (6.5 – 6.2, 6+), it repeats at #1. A combined +1.2 in January/February (6.4 – 7.1 – 7.6, 6+), KCFR was #1 in September 2018, October, and November before segueing to #2 in December. Returning to the top twenty (#21 to #19), Community Radio for Northern Colorado news/talk KUNC logs a 1.5 (6+) for the third time in the last four ratings periods (1.5 – 1.8 – 1.5 – 1.5, 6+).

Denver Music Formats – Off seven-tenths as a result of three straight down or flat trends (2.7 – 2.1 – 2.1 – 2.0, 6+), iHeartMedia’s country KWBL “106.7 The Bull” storms back with a +1.1 to 3.1 (#18 to #15, 6+), its highest 6+-share since November 2018’s 3.5. Powered by a +.7, alternative cluster-mate KTCL “Channel 93.3 Denver’s Modern Rock” vaults from eighth to second and has a February 2019 through May 2019 topline of 5.4 – 5.1 – 4.7 – 5.4 (6+). Climbing from ninth to eighth, Entercom rhythmic CHR KQKS is a collective +1.7 in five straight up or flat trends (2.9 – 2.9 – 3.0 – 3.8 – 4.6 – 4.6, 6+). The four most recent fluctuations for Bonneville adult contemporary KOSI are -.7 (February); +.7 (March); -1.3 (April); and +.6 in May (4.0 – 4.6, 6+) as “101.1 Real-Music-Variety” returns to the top ten (#12 to #8). An overall +7.9 in three straight sweeps without a loss (4.9 – 4.9 – 7.6 – 12.8, 6+), KOSI was #1 in December and “Holiday” 2018 (with a 12.8, 6+), but was a combined -8.2 in January/February (12.8 – 5.3 – 4.6, 6+). The last time any Denver station reached the 12-share level (6+) was more than four years ago (KOSI, 12.4, “Holiday” 2014). Another station in the “Mile High City” with major month-to-month shifts is KSE Radio Ventures’ classic hits-oldies KXKL “Kool 105 – Denver’s Greatest Hits” which has been +1.2 (January); -.6 (February); +1.2 (March); -.9 (April); and -.8 in May (5.4 – 4.6, third to eighth, 6+). “Kool” had a March-only stay at #1. Sputtering by seven-tenths each are Bonneville’s country KYGO (second to fifth) and Educational Media Foundation contemporary Christian KLDV “Positive & Encouraging K-Love” (2.6, #14 to #18, 6+). KYGO suspends four straight up or flat trends that netted +1.4 (4.3 – 4.6 – 5.0 – 5.7 – 5.7, 6+), while KLDV erases its +.7 in four successive up or flat moves (2.6 – 2.7 – 3.1 – 3.1 – 3.3, 6+). Following four straight sweeps without a loss that yielded a +1.4 (4.0 – 4.0 – 4.6 – 5.2 – 5.4, 6+), iHeartMedia’s KRFX “Classic Rock 103.5 The Fox” relinquishes one-half share to 4.9 (third to sixth, 6+). Even though Entravision’s KJMN pulls the plug on three consecutive loss that led to an overall -1.2 (4.7 – 4.2 – 4.0 – 3.5, 6+) by adding one-tenth to 3.6 (6+), “La Suavecita 92.7” backslides from #13 to #14.

Baltimore

Spoken-Word Formats – The remarkably consistent January 2019 through May 2019 topline for Hearst Television news/talk WBAL “News Radio – Expect More” is: 2.7 – 2.8 – 2.7 – 2.7 – 2.8 (#12 to #11, 6+). Without an increase the fourth time in succession for a collective -1.2 (3.4 – 3.4 – 3.1 – 3.0 – 2.2, 6+), independent news/talk WCBM “680 Stimulating Talk – Breaking News” slips from #11 to #13. In four straight up or flat sweeps (.3 – .3 – .4 – .5 – .6, 6+), Cumulus Media Washington, DC news/talk WMAL doubled (+.3) its 6+ Baltimore stat, but in April/May, WMAL has its 6+ AQH share sliced in half (.6 – .5 – .3 (unchanged at #28, 6+).

Despite adding one-tenth to April’s half-share gain (3.9 – 4.4 – 4.5, 6+), Entercom sports talk/Orioles flagship WJZ-FM “105.7 The Fan” backslides from eighth to ninth.

Co-owned business news WDCH answers March’s loss of four-tenths with an April/May +1.0 (.9 – 1.6 – 1.9, #16 to #15, 6+).

Off by one-half share in back-to-back reports (3.4 – 2.9 – 2.4, 6+), Your Public Radio news/talk WYPR “88.1 Your NPR News Station” regains two-tenths to 2.6 (#13 to #12). American University-owned news/talk WAMU, which picked up one-tenth in March, is a combined -.4 in April/May (1.5 – 1.2 – 1.1, #19 to #20, 6+).

Baltimore Music Formats – On the strength of a +1.0 (4.4 – 5.4, 6+), iHeartMedia adult hits WQSR “102.7 Jack-FM” leaps from eighth to fifth and reaches the five-share level (5.4, 6+) for the first time since December 2018’s 5.3. Advancing from seventh to fifth, Hearst Television’s WIYY “98 Rock” (+.7 in May) continues a down/up pattern it started in December 2018 (4.3 – 4.0 – 5.1 – 4.7 – 5.0 – 4.7 – 5.4, 6+). While it is the (6+) market leader the fourth straight time, Radio One urban contemporary WERQ “92 Q Jams” sputters by -1.0 to 8.8 (6+), immediately after posting a +2.2 in March/April (7.6 – 8.3 – 9.8, 6+), reaching the nine-share level (9.8, 6+) for the first time since July 2016’s 9.2. Its January +1.0 halted three consecutive declines that resulted in a -1.2 (7.9 – 7.7 – 7.0 – 6.7, 6+). After posting a 15.2 (6+) in “Holiday” 2018, Entercom adult contemporary WLIF-FM is trending 6.5 – 6.6 – 6.4 – 5.8 – 5.8 (fourth to third, 6+). Unchanged at #3, iHeartMedia’s WPOC “93.1 Today’s Best Country” loses one-half share in three straight down or flat moves (6.3 – 5.9 – 5.9 – 5.8, 6+), while co-owned CHR WZFT “Z-104.3 Baltimore’s #1 Hit Music Station” is off four-tenths in three sweeps in a row without an increase (4.6 – 4.3 – 4.3 – 4.2, flat at #10, 6+). At the same time, Shamrock Communications-owned WZBA “100.7 The Bay – Baltimore’s Classic Rock Station” regresses by nine-tenths as a result of three consecutive setbacks (6.2 – 5.8 – 5.6 – 5.3, fifth to seventh, 6+). This is the ninth sweep in a row that Peter and John Radio Fellowship contemporary Christian WRBS-FM is unlisted; “95.1 Shine FM – Baltimore’s Positive Hits Station” was #13 in August 2018 (2.6, 6+).

St. Louis

Spoken-Word Formats – Forfeiting roughly one-third of April’s gigantic +2.2 with a May decrease of seven-tenths (7.3 – 6.6, 6+), Entercom news/talk KMOX “The Voice of St. Louis” has an April-only stay at #1 and drops to #3. Prior to April, the last time the St. Louis Cardinals flagship occupied the top spot was October 2018 (8.4, 6+). Off four-tenths in March/April (2.5 – 2.2 – 2.1, 6+), co-owned KFTK “FM News Talk 97.1” erases half that shortfall with a +.2 to 2.3 (flat at #18, 6+).

After back-to-back losses of one-half share (4.1 – 3.6 – 3.1, 6+), Hubbard Broadcasting sports talk WXOS “101 Sports” is a combined +.3 in April/May (3.1 – 3.2 – 3.4, steady at #15, 6+).

A combined -1.3 in March/April (4.5 – 3.7 – 3.2, 6+), University of Missouri news/talk KWMU adds one-tenth in May to 3.3 (6+) yet backslides from #15 to #16.

St. Louis Music Formats – In addition to cracking the top ten (#11 to #9), Entercom CHR WNOU “Now 96.3 All The Hits” extends its consecutive string of positive spikes to five and has more than doubled (+2.6) its 6+ AQH share in that timeframe (2.5 – 3.4 – 3.7 – 4.4 – 4.7 – 5.1, 6+). Simultaneous with Hubbard Broadcasting’s WIL “New Country 92.3” improving by eight-tenths (5.8 – 6.6, sixth to third, 6+), iHeartMedia’s KSD “93.7 The Bull – #1 For New Country” regresses by seven-tenths (4.9 – 4.2, 6+) and departs the top ten (#9 to #12). WIL was up seven-tenths in March, but dropped three-tenths in April. In February, “New Country” faltered by six-tenths to 5.4, its lowest 6+-stat since “Holiday” 2017 (5.4, as well). The four most recent fluctuations for “The Bull” are +.5 (February); -.5 (March); +.9 (April); and -.7 (May). An increase of six-tenths (6.0 – 6.6, 6+) enables Hubbard Broadcasting’s KPNT “105.7 The Point – Everything Alternative” to progress from fifth to third. In five straight sweeps without a loss, iHeartMedia-owned/similarly-formatted KLLT “Alt 104.9” nets two-tenths (1.7 – 1.7 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 1.9 – 1.9, flat at #19, 6+). As a result of three straight upticks, Entercom hot AC KYKY is a +1.0 (4.6 – 4.7 – 5.1 – 5.6, 6+) as “Y-98” inches up from eighth to seventh. Hubbard Broadcasting’s KSHE “95 Real Rock Radio” was tied for February’s top spot with iHeartMedia classic hits-oldies KLOU and then took sole possession of first-place in March. In April, KSHE again had to share the lead – on that occasion with Entercom news/talk KMOX (see above). Up one-tenth in May (7.3 – 7.4, 6+), KSHE now claims sole possession of the top spot. Six recent shifts for KSHE include +.5 (December); -.7 (Holiday” 2018); +2.0 (January 2019); -.5 (February); +1.3 (March); and -1.6 (April). March’s 8.9 is its highest 6+-share since November 2016 (8.6). A combined -.7 in April/May (4.6 – 4.5 – 3.9, 6+), Radio One urban AC WFUN “95.5 R&B For The Lou” falls from #12 to #13. Despite a half-share dip, Gateway Creative Broadcasting contemporary Christian KLJY “99.1 Joy FM,” which is trending 7.3 – 6.9 – 7.2 – 6.7 (6+), advances from third to second. Flashing a +1.6 in January, the aforementioned KLOU “103.3 St. Louis’ Greatest Hits” has followed with four straight setbacks for a cumulative -2.0 (7.9 – 7.6 – 6.8 – 6.2 – 5.9, fourth to sixth, 6+).

Friday, April 26, 2019

| April 26, 2019

Mark Levin to Air Interview with President Trump. Nationally syndicated talk radio host Mark Levin is presenting an exclusive interview with President Trump on his Westwood One program later today (4/26).  In the segment, the president tells Levin he’ll be proud to run on a position that continues prohibiting felons from voting and accuses Democrats of moving to the far left.  Trump also weighed in on the Mueller Report.  Check out some of the audio from the interview here.

NJBA to Induct Class of 2019 into Hall of Fame.  At this summer’s New Jersey Broadcasters Association convention in Atlantic City, the state broadcasters organization will induct seven into its Hall of Fame.  Being enshrined this year will be: Beasley Media Group CEO Caroline Beasley (who will also present a keynote address at the convention), iHeartMedia Networks Group president Darren DavisTownsquare Media CEO Bill Wilson, Salem Radio Network SVP Phil Boyce, Emmis Communications founder and chairman Jeff Smulyan, WFPG-FM, Atlantic City “Lite Rock” morning host Eddie Davis, and late national syndication and WCTC-AM, New Brunswick talk radio legend Bruce Williams.  Also at this year’s event,TALKERS magazine publisher Michael Harrison will address the conference as a featured speaker.

Jim Bohannon Helps WDUN Celebrate 70th Anniversary. Pictured above is Westwood One nationally syndicated late night personality Jim Bohannon (right) with WDUN, Gainesville, Georgia EVP and general manager Bill Maine (left).  Bohannon visited his affiliate station in the market yesterday (4/25) to attend its 70thanniversary celebration luncheon.

Kellie Holeman Named Market President at iHeartMedia Greensboro. Radio executive Kellie Holeman is moving from iHeartMedia’s Toledo operations to the Greensboro/Winston-Salem/High Point cluster to serve as market president.  The station group consists of news/talk WPTI-FM and seven music formatted stations.  iHeartMedia area president Bill McMartin says, “I am very excited to have Kellie Holeman lead the iHeartMedia team in the Triad and the Virginia-Carolina region.  Kellie has an extensive track record and brings over 25 years of experience managing iHeartMedia stations in a competitive Ohio media environment.  Our Greensboro team is looking forward to Kellie’s strong leadership, positive enthusiasm, and competitive drive to further lead a best-in-class team at iHeartMedia Greensboro.”  Holeman served as market president for a seven-station market for iHeartMedia Toledo for the past seven years.

Detailed Agenda for Talkers 2019: Telling the Story Posted.  Although speakers and sessions are still being added, the basic detailed agenda for the forthcoming 22nd annual installment of the longest-running, most important annual gathering of the talk media industry is now posted and can be accessed here.  According to TALKERS VP/executive editor Kevin Casey, “The sheer quality of this convention’s lineup of speakers is a testimony to the present-day vibrancy of talk radio and the associated talk media industry. This is the place to be for anyone who is serious about their career and business in the field of talk shows.”  The event will take place on Friday, June 7 in New York City at the ultra-modern Helen Mills Event Space and Theater located in the colorful Chelsea district of Manhattan.  The conference will feature more than 55 top speakers from all aspects of the spoken-word media industry – including influential talent, programmers, managers and owners – with a focus on talk radio and its role in the rapidly accelerating digital age.  This will include programming, sales, marketing, and technology as well as the full spectrum of concerns, challenges and opportunities facing modern day talk broadcasters and broadcasting organizations.  It will feature keynote addresses, panel discussions, fireside chats, one-on-one conversations and exhibits of the latest services and equipment available to broadcasting professionals. Like its predecessors, Talkers 2019: Telling the Story will also provide its attendees with unparalleled networking opportunities and social mixers including breakfast, lunch, and a closing cocktail reception — all in a single, fast-paced day!  As is customary with TALKERS conventions, Talkers 2019: Telling the Story is only open to members of the professional media industry and communications students. Because seating is limited and the event has been an early sellout every year since the 1990s, in order to maintain this policy, non-refundable registrations can only be purchased via telephone with a credit card. A full registration, including all functions, meals, and refreshments, costs $329. To register or obtain sponsorship information, call Barbara Kurland at 413-565-5413. To take advantage of the hotel discount available to TALKERS convention attendees, contact the Hilton Fashion District Hotel located directly across the street from the venue at 152 W. 26th St, New York, NY 10001 by clicking here.

TALKERS CONVENTION SPOTLIGHT:  Panel Discussion to Address Talk Radio’s Challenges and Opportunities Generating Revenue in 2019.  One of the many highlights planned for the forthcoming Talkers 2019: Telling the Story on Friday, June 7 in New York City will be an extremely useful and pertinent panel discussion focusing on the challenges faced by and opportunities available to talk radio in 2019 in advertising sales, digital marketing, and the generation of non-traditional revenue.  Titled, “Generating Talk Radio Revenue in 2019,” the session will feature panelists (in alphabetical order) Asa Andrew, host, “AsaRx”; Vince Benedetto, CEO Bold Gold Media GroupSuzanne Grimes, EVP/marketing, Cumulus Media and president, Westwood OneChad Lopez, VP/market manager, Cumulus Media New York; Dave Robinett, chief marketing officer, #250 – America’s Mobile Speed Dial; and Julie Talbott, president, Premiere Networks. The discussion will be moderated by Erica Farber, president/CEO of the Radio Advertising Bureau (RAB).  The session will be introduced by Michael Zwerling, owner, KSCO/KOMY, Santa Cruz.  The panel will identify problems as well as solutions inherent in the sales and marketing of talk radio as the medium integrates its multi-platform assets into the rapidly evolving digital era.   Don’t miss this session!  The TALKERS convention is rapidly heading toward being an early sellout.  To see the entire up-to-the-minute agenda and registration/hotel information, please click here.

WMVP’s Zederman Launches Fitness-Nutrition Podcast. Chicago media writer Robert Feder reports some podcast news out of the Windy City. Danny Zederman, who serves ESPN sports talk O&O WMVP-AM as executive producer of the late morning “Kap & Co.” with host David Kaplan, is striking out into the podcast space with the health, nutrition, and fitness-focused “The Armchair Nutritionist” program.  Zederman tells Feder, “I target a demographic that usually goes unserved in the health and nutrition marketplace: the newbies trying to figure out health and nutrition in order to get themselves on track in life with the limited time they have in the day.”

Mueller Report Aftermath/Impeachment Talk Top News/Talk Stories for Week of April 22-26.  The reaction to the release of the redacted version of the Mueller Report and Democrats’ calls for impeachment of President Trump were the top news/talk stories this week, landing atop the Talkers TenTM.  At #2 this week was the Trump Administration’s plan to ignore subpoenas from House leaders.  Coming in at #3 was the 2020 presidential candidates and their political strategies, followed by the Southern border migrant issue at #4.  The Talkers TenTM is a weekly chart of the top stories and people discussed on news/talk radio during the week and is the result of ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.  It is published every Friday at Talkers.com.  See this week’s entire chart here.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. Programmer Dave Numme is promoted to format captain for hot AC and rock brands for Alpha Media.  Numme serves as content director for hot AC KEZR and classic hits KBAY in San Jose, positions he will continue to hold.   Numme says, “Alpha Media is progressive in building a culture that empowers our people to initiate new ideas to grow our brands and audience.  It’s exciting to be asked to help share best practices and collaborate with all of our content managers to have fun and win.”…..In Rhode Island, Hall Communications appoints April Shibley to the position of promotions manager for WCTK-FM, Providence “Cat Country 98.1.”  She previously served with Cumulus Media New York as promotions director.  Hall Communications VP of programming Bob Walker says, “April is a true industry pro and we are thrilled to have her join us in Providence.”…..WCMF, Rochester midday personality Dave Kane is the subject of a feature piece in the Rochester Democrat & Chronicle this week.  The piece reveals Kane’s thoughts on classic rock from the late 1960s and the 1970s and why it still resonates with people.  Kane is being honored by the Rochester Music Hall of Fame for his 38 years of work on the rock station at a ceremony on Sunday (4/28).

PPM Analysis: Mainstream Rock.  Managing editor Mike Kinosian takes a look at the performances of radio stations based on data from Nielsen Audio’s March 2019 PPM survey, today focusing on mainstream rock.  Based on weekly 6+ AQH share, about half the rock stations in PPM markets saw their ratings go up and about half saw them go down.  Comparing March 2018 to March 2019 slightly more than half (56%) of rock stations saw ratings improve year-over-year.  Three rock stations ranked #1 in their respective markets during the March survey: Hubbard Radio’s KSHE, St. Louis; and iHeartMedia’s WDVE, Pittsburgh and WHJY, Providence.  See the whole report here.

Friday, April 5, 2019

| April 5, 2019

Craig Carton Sentenced to 42 Months in Prison.  Former WFAN, New York morning personality Craig Carton was sentenced to three-and-a-half years in federal prison plus three years probation today (4/5) after being found guilty of fraud charges in connection with a bogus concert tickets resale scheme involving $5.6 million.  Prosecutors had sought six to seven years.  After today’s sentencing, Carton is releasing a short film he produced called, “The Reckoning,” that reveals his gambling addiction and what it did to his life.  Carton opens up about the astonishing amounts of cash he was wagering while proclaiming on his radio show that he was a “blackjack savant” – until the morning of September 6, 2017 when the FBI arrested him on fraud charges.  The New York Post’s Phil Mushnick writes about it here.

Remembering Bruce Reese. Former longtime Bonneville International and Hubbard Radio president and CEO Bruce Reese passed away earlier this week at age 70 after a long illness.  He retired from full-time duties with Hubbard in 2014.  During his career he also chaired the NAB’s Joint Radio and Television Boards as well as the NAB Education Foundation. For a number of years, he served as a board member of the Radio Advertising Bureau.  Years ago, TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian wrote a feature piece about Reese.  You can read that here.

KWMU, St. Louis Host Resigns After Manager Questions Guest Greeting. St. Louis Public Radio host Don Marsh resigned from his role with the pubcaster after management told him his greeting a guest by telling her she “looked great” was “on the line” of acceptable.  Eighty-year-old Marsh made the comment to 75-year-old Karen Foss (a longtime television personality in the market) who did not complain and even posted a social media comment saying she was not offended, calling his words a “common way for those of us who are aged to greet each other.” The complaint came from a producer who witnessed the exchange.  Marsh told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch he hadn’t wanted to retire from the station and called the incident “very much a generational thing.”

Joyce Littel Named PD at WAOK, Atlanta. As reported by the Atlanta Journal Constitution’s Rodney Ho, urban news/talk WAOK, Atlanta names acting PD Joyce Littel program director for the station.  Littel also serves as the evening personality on urban contemporary WVEE “V-103.”  She has been handling programming responsibilities at the station since the retirement of Jean Ross last fall.  Littel is quoted from a press release saying, “I’d like to get back to WAOK’s roots.  My goal is to further expand the station’s heritage by pushing boundaries to reach new heights in our communities with education, entertainment, and financial literacy.”

Gorka Draws Sell-Out Crowd in Dallas. Pictured above are Salem Radio Network host Dr. Sebastian Gorka (left) and KSKY, Dallas “660 The Answer” morning host Mark Davis (right) along with the crowd from last night’s sold-out “An Evening with Sebastian Gorka” event at the Palace Arts Center in historic downtown Grapevine, Texas.  Gorka fielded questions from the audience for two hours, discussing breaking news and 2020 presidential politics.

TALKERS News Notes. Michigan’s Hillsdale College is launching a new, nationally syndicated radio program produced by the school called, “The Radio Free Hillsdale Hour.”  So far, the program is airing on nine stations in three states.  WRFH “Radio Free Hillsdale 101.7 FM” general manager Scot Bertram – who hosts the show with production assistance from students – says, “The ideas and arguments discussed here at Hillsdale College are relevant to all citizens and this new radio program is one way to share them with people across the country.  Talk radio listeners already know Hillsdale by reputation.  Now they’ll have the opportunity to hear from the school’s faculty, staff, alumni, and others directly.”  The program addresses public affairs and news through the lens of classical liberal arts education…..Westwood One is presenting exclusive hole-by-hole coverage from the 83rd Masters Tournament beginning Thursday, April 11 and running through Sunday, April 14. Mike Tirico is joining the network to anchor the coverage from the 18th green at the Augusta National Golf Club in Georgia.  This year marks the 64th consecutive year that Westwood One has provided Masters radio coverage, the longest continuous sports broadcast partnership in network radio history.

Mueller Report Aftermath Top News/Talk Story for Week of April 1-5, 2019.  The aftermath of the Mueller Report completion was the most-talked-about story on news/talk radio during the week, landing atop the Talkers TenTM.  At #2 this week was the Trump tax returns issue.  Coming in at #3 was President Trump and the Mexican border, followed by Joe Biden’s #MeToo problem at #4.  The Talkers TenTM is a weekly chart of the top stories and people discussed on news/talk radio during the week and is the result of ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.  It is published every Friday at Talkers.com.  See this week’s entire chart here.

Westwood One: TV and AM/FM Beat Google/Facebook for Site Traffic Lift. This study is the subject of Westwood One’s blog post this week.  Westwood One and LeadsRx say the report on media attribution and awareness of the direct-to-consumer (DTC) retail category indicates, among other things, that “combined TV and AM/FM radio ads generate twice the site traffic lift of Google/Facebook ads.”  Further, WWO says LeadsRx found that “TV and AM/FM radio drove a combined 40% site traffic lift, compared to 17% for Google/Facebook.”  Cumulus Media EVP of marketing and Westwood One president Suzanne Grimes says, “Two-thirds of podcast advertisers today are DTC brands and they report stunning sales effect and spectacular ROI with podcasts.  With this report, we now have hard evidence that AM/FM radio generates significant impact for DTC brands too.”

Harrison Podcast Focuses This Week on Health Care Issues.  Nationally syndicated radio talk show host and noted physician Dr. Daliah Wachs is this week’s guest on the award-winning PodcastOne series, “The Michael Harrison Interview.”  Wachs, a Las Vegas-based physician, teacher, author, public speaker and radio talk show host, is a member of the TALKERS Heavy Hundred as one of America’s leading radio MDs and is a past recipient of the TALKERS “Humanitarian of the Year” award for her significant charity work over the years.  These accomplishments were highlighted by her direct initiative in 2014 to replenish hospital blood supplies, in which she worked with United Blood Services and the American Red Cross to create a state Blood Donation Day in Nevada.  In 2016, this effort was taken nationally to create state Blood Donation Days in the majority of states as well as National Blood Donation Week. No longer operating a private family practice, Wachs has developed an extraordinary footprint in media hosting a nationally syndicated talk show on the Genesis Communications Network.  She is heard on iHeartRadio and multiple affiliates worldwide. She also makes multiple television appearances commenting on medicine and health-related issues.  Harrison and Wachs take a deep, non-partisan dive into President Trump’s relaunched campaign to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act as well as the vaccination controversy that is currently being debated in the national conversation.  Harrison states, “Dr. Daliah Wachs is a broadcast industry treasure.  She can always be counted on to bring a sense of intellectual clarity, honesty and first-hand experience to touchy health care topics that transcends the partisan bickering so common in this arena.”  To listen to the podcast in its entirety, please click here or click on the player box marked “The Michael Harrison Interview” located in the right-hand column of the TALKERS email newsletter and on every page on Talkers.com.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. Air personality Tamara G. and Entercom agree to a contract extension for her to continue co-hosting the morning show on adult contemporary WLYF, Miami “101.5 Lite FM” with co-host Julie Guy.  Entercom South Florida SVP and market manager Keriann Worley states, “Tamara G. is the yin to Julie’s yang and we are thrilled to have her remain on the ‘101.5 LITE FM’ team.  Their morning show is so uniquely catered to South Florida listeners and features two of the market’s most loved personalities.”…..As reported in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, iHeartMedia makes a morning show change at classic hits WRIT, letting Meg McKenzie and Dave Murphy go after 11 years at the station.  Station PD Brett Andrews takes over the morning show.  The duo wrote in a Facebook post that programming change was a “business-related” decision by the company and they understand that…..Programming pro Jay Dixon is named program director for Radio One’s Philadelphia stations rhythmic oldies WRNB and WPPZ.  Radio One corporate vice president of programming Colby Tyner says, “I’m excited to be working with Jay.  He’s a seasoned pro who understands the urban format and has a strong track record of success.  We’re glad to have him on the Philly team.”…..JVC Media announces two on-air changes at its Gainesville-Ocala market stations.  Fifteen-year market pro Leroy joins Jenn Ryan to co-host the morning show on CHR WFMQ “Q92.9.” Leroy comes from the company’s country WXUS “US 102.3” where he was hosting mornings.  Taking over for him on WXUS is Barry Michaels.  The changes take effect on Monday (4/8).

Monday, March 18, 2019

| March 18, 2019

Atlanta’s ‘92.9 The Game’ Ousts Midday Hosts Rick Kamla and John Michaels. First reported by Atlanta Journal Constitution writer Rodney Ho, the midday team of Rick Kamla and John Michaels – together on the air since 2016 – has been let go by Entercom sports talker WZGC-FM, Atlanta “92.9 The Game.”  Kamla was part of the station’s morning show when WZGC launched as a sports talk station in 2012, but later moved to middays.  He was joined by Michaels in 2016.  Michaels confirmed his exit via Twitter saying they were given a number of reasons why they were being let go, including “not connecting with the audience.”  WZGC has made no public comments about the changes, including its plans for the 10:00 am to 2:00 pm slot.

Kridel Reduces Air Time at WBBM, Chicago.  As reported by Chicago media writer Robert Feder, news anchor Kris Kridel is scaling back her time on the air at Entercom’s all-news WBBM-AM/WCFS-FM, Chicago to part-time status.  The 34-year station veteran will now be heard from 12:00 noon to 3:00 pm.  She had been on the air for six straight hours.  Feder reports that Lisa Fielding will be on the 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm program with co-anchor Keith Johnson most weekdays.

Monday Memo: The Boys Are Back. Consultant Holland Cooke delivers this week’s Monday Memo from the heart of Red Sox Nation with advice about the return of baseball to radio’s airwaves: “Mathematically, baseball may be affiliates’ best friend for the next several months, when play-by-play invites new cume, and tune-in to fringe hours; and is full of suspense and commercial inventory that sells without numbers.” In this week’s Monday Memo, Cooke – ALREADY wearing his Red Sox jersey – offers three tips for boosting awareness and recycling and impressing advertisers.  Read it here.

Westwood One Promotes Stuart Greenblatt to SVP. Serving in his 20th year with Westwood One, Stuart Greenblatt is promoted to senior vice president, affiliate sales.  In his previous VP, affiliate sales post, he was in charge of station services for the network’s talk show properties.  In his new role, Greenblatt will oversee the distribution and marketing of all Westwood One programs and affiliate services for radio stations around the country, as well as supervise the national affiliate sales team and manage station client relationships.  Greenblatt says, “After working in affiliate sales for almost 20 years, I am honored to be leading the affiliate sales team here at Westwood One, truly the best in the business.  I look forward to working together with our station partners and our outstanding sales team to grow and promote our first-rate programming across the board.”

Nielsen’s National Media Impact Added to Westwood One’s Audio Insights Platform. This deal between Nielsen and Westwood One allows the latter to license the national version of Nielsen Media Impact (NMI) powered by Nielsen’s Total Media Fusion.  NMI is a cross-platform media planning and optimization solution that helps clients understand total campaign reach, frequency, and duplication using advanced audience segments.  It will enable Westwood One to demonstrate the value that its unique audiences bring to an advertiser’s media plan and illustrate radio’s substantial incremental reach.  Cumulus Media EVP of marketing and Westwood One president Suzanne Grimes says, “With Nielsen Media Impact, we can show our advertising partners the effect on overall campaign reach and frequency when money is moved between media.  Advertisers will be able to access this tool through the groundbreaking Westwood One ROI Guarantee audio insights platform.  It’s a new dimension in making media investments work smarter for marketers using radio, podcasting, and streaming to drive ROI.  We welcome the opportunity to demonstrate the power of adding audio to a media plan, giving agencies and brands the information they need to understand the true value of our medium in driving sales.” Nielsen says that in 2018, it enhanced NMI to include national radio.  Nielsen’s national radio data within Nielsen Media Impact allows buyers and sellers to understand the value of radio as a medium at the national level, as well as the incremental reach achieved by including national radio in the media mix. With the national version of Nielsen Media Impact clients can plan and optimize media allocation and compare total radio, radio formats, and radio owner groups with other national media (including TV, digital, print, cinema and digital place-based media) in advanced audience segments.

Randi P’Pool Joins Aptivada as Chief Marketing Officer. Leaving her role with Alpha Media as vice president of marketing is Randi P’Pool, who joins Aptivada, a provider of promotions contesting and audience engagement tools as chief marketing officer.  In her role with Alpha Media (which, along with iHeartMedia and Bonneville,is a client of Aptivada) P’Pool led national promotions, corporate partnerships, digital contesting, company communications and PR, events and cross-platform brand marketing.   In her new role, she’ll join Aptivada’s leadership team focusing on the strategic evolution and growth of Aptivada.  P’Pool says, “Not only does Aptivada offer the optimum digital marketing platform but it also provides extremely innovative solutions to generate new digital revenue for broadcasters.  The opportunity to support, foster and endorse a company as innovative and remarkable as Aptivada is the utmost honor and privilege for me!”

TALKERS News Notes. As long as the court schedule doesn’t change, former WFAN, New York morning drive personality Craig Carton will learn his fate on April 5 at his sentencing on conspiracy and fraud charges.  According to sentencing guidelines, Carton could get as much as 45 years in prison, although it’s likely he’ll serve far less than that. Two of his convicted co-conspirators have already been sentenced.  Michael Wright is serving a sentence of almost two years and Joseph Meli is doing six and-a-half years.  The three were involved in a Ponzi scheme that took money from investors in a VIP concert ticket re-sale business.  Prosecutors convinced jurors Carton spent some of the money paying off gambling debts and for personal expenses…..The Buffalo News reports that Entercom has sold its radio tower on Grand Island – one that carries the signal for CHR WKSE-FM “Kiss 98.5” to Vertical Bridge for almost $1.5 million.  WKSE’s signal will continue to emanate from the tower under a leaseback deal…..Condolences to the family and friends of Dave Sandler – a former longtime traffic reporter for Hearst’s WBAL-AM, Baltimore – who passed away last Thursday evening at age 58 after a long illness.  Sandler was known as “Detour Dave Sandler” to WBAL and rock WIYY-FM. He exited WBAL in 2017 after 31 years there.

Mosques Massacre Aftermath, Trump’s Weekend Tweetstorm, College Admissions Scandal, Boeing’s 737 Woes, Trump-Russia Investigation Status, 2020 Democratic Hopefuls/Kirsten Gillibrand Announces, Midwest Flooding, NBA Action, and NCAA Tournament Seeding Among Top News/Talk Stories Over the Weekend. The aftermath of the mosques attacks in New Zealand that left 50 people dead; President Trump’s weekend tweets that took aim at General Motors and a UAW boss, the late Senator John McCain, and NBC’s “Saturday Night Live”; the blowback from the college admissions cheating scandal; Boeing’s challenges with the 737 Max planes in the wake of the second crash in five months; the status of the investigation into possible Trump campaign connections with Russian agents; the Democrats hoping to challenge President Trump in 2020, including the entrance of Senator Kirsten Gillibrand; the devastating floods in Nebraska and Iowa; NBA hoops action; and the 2019 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament bracket were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio over the weekend, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Hexagon 2019: Romp in the Swamp. Nationally syndicated late-night talk show host Jim Bohannon (left) poses for a photo with former NBC anchor Jackie Nedell (right) on the set of the satirical musical comedy review, “Hexagon 2019: Romp in the Swamp,” in Washington on Friday (3/15).

Music Radio News and Career Moves. At Des Moines alternative rock KDXA “ALT 106.3,” Alex Mac is named assistant program director, adding the duties to his roles as afternoon drive personality and music director.  iHeartMedia Des Moines SVP of programming Greg Chance says, “Alex has a bright programming future and has displayed all the characteristics of a great programmer. We are excited to see him further develop his career.”  Prior to joining the iHeartMedia Des Moines market in October 2017, Mac served as evening host and promotions assistant for WRXL-FM, Richmond…..Entercom radio personality Ken Hicks is being recognized by the Georgia State Senate for his career in radio and community service.  Hicks hosts the morning show at WUSY-FM, Chattanooga “U.S. 101” that serves a large portion of Northwest Georgia.  Entercom Chattanooga SVP and market manager Nichole Hartman says, “In his nearly 35 years with ‘U.S. 101,’ Ken has raised millions of dollars for charities, assisted in relief efforts for dozens of disasters, and has served and continues to serve the Chattanooga and North Georgia community with his whole heart.  Ken epitomizes the distinct group of people deserving of this honor and I am proud that he is a part of our team.”…..In the Palm Springs market, Tommy Carrera, a.k.a. Tommy C, exits his PD roles with Alpha Media.  He’d been programming both country KDES “98.5 The Bull” and classic hits KDGL “106.9 The Eagle.”

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