NOW POSTED: New Installment of “The Michael Harrison Wrap: An Overview of the National Conversation.” The vibrant, one-hour weekend special, “The Michael Harrison Wrap,” that looks back each week at the hottest topics discussed in American talk media per the research of TALKERS magazine, is now posted. The new episode titled, “WHO – Do You Trust?” looks back at this past week of April 13-17, 2020 and features guests (in order of appearance): Kevin Casey, executive editor, TALKERS; Simon Conway, talk show host, WHO, Des Moines / WOC, Davenport / WMT, Cedar Rapids; April Ryan, Washington, DC correspondent, American Urban Radio Networks / political analyst, CNN; McGraw Milhaven, talk show host, KTRS, St. Louis; and John McConnell, senior vice president, Workhouse Media. This acclaimed news/talk radio show airs each week on its flagship, WONK-FM, Washington, DC, Friday evenings at 6:00 pm ET. It also airs throughout the weekend on WRKO, Boston; KSCO, Santa Cruz, CA; KDFD (“Freedom 93.7”), Denver; KFNX, Phoenix; WVLY, Wheeling, WV; WVOX, Westchester, NY; KBDT, Dallas; KQSP, Minneapolis; KBKW, Aberdeen, WA; WGDJ, Albany, NY; WJFN-FM, Richmond, VA; WZFG, Fargo; KTGO, Tioga, ND; WPHM, Port Huron, MI; the Virginia Talk Radio Network and Pioneer Valley Radio in Springfield, MA. To listen to this week’s episode (and the program’s complete archives), please click here. To view the latest TALKERS magazine topic research, please click here. “The Michael Harrison Wrap” is now available in syndication via Talk Media Network to stations across America on a market exclusive basis. For affiliation information, please click here or call 616-884-8616.
TALKERS EXCLUSIVE: Audio Interview with John McConnell. As reported in TALKERS (4/3), former ABC Radio SVP of programming and current EVP of talent and content for management agency Workhouse Media, John McConnell, narrowly escaped the clutches of COVID-19 thanks to the controversial drug Plaquenil (hydroxychloroquine) – a med used to combat malaria, lupus, and rheumatoid arthritis. After being admitted to Cleveland Clinic Indian River Hospital in Vero Beach, Florida in very bad shape with pneumonia, McConnell and his wife made out their wills and, after a time, had even said goodbye to each other, expecting the worst. Staff were preparing to put him on a ventilator and McConnell had heard about the poor recovery rates for ventilated patients. However, Premiere Networks superstar Sean Hannity intervened by arranging with Dr. Mehmet Oz to connect with McConnell’s doctor in Florida and arrange for Plaquenil therapy. Soon thereafter, McConnell began to feel better and recover. He says he’s feeling better every day and his main concern is to not get exposed again. Don’t miss an exclusive TALKERS interview conducted between Michael Harrison and John McConnell discussing the details of his experience. To listen to the entire conversation, please click here.
Round Two of March PPMs Released. The second of four rounds of ratings from Nielsen Audio’s March 2020 PPM survey has been released for 12 markets including: Washington, Boston, Miami, Seattle, Detroit, Phoenix, Minneapolis, San Diego, Tampa, Denver, Baltimore, and St. Louis. The survey covered February 27 through March 25. You can see all the weekly, 6+ AQH share numbers from subscribing stations here. Positive movement among spoken-word stations included: Cumulus Media’s WMAL-FM, Washington – up five-tenths from February to finish with a 7.8 share and the #3 rank in the market; Hubbard Radio’s all-news WTOP-FM, Washington added four-tenths for an 8.2 share and the #2 rank; iHeartMedia’s all-news WBZ-AM, Boston tacked on eight-tenths to wrap March with a 6.4 share and the #3 rank; Bonneville’s KIRO-FM, Seattle jumped 1.2 shares in March, finishing with a 6.0 share and taking over the #1 rank in the market; Sinclair Broadcast Group’s all-news KOMO-AM/FM, Seattle climbs to the #3 rank after adding 1.3 shares to finish with a 5.4 share; and Entercom’s all-news WWJ-AM, Detroit tacks on a full share to end March with a 5.8 share and the #3 rank in the market. You can see all of TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian’s Ratings Takeaways from the first two rounds of this survey here.
Jerry Schemmel Joins Talent Lineup at Denver’s ‘The Fan.’ Former Colorado Rockies radio play-by-play personality Jerry Schemmel – who exited that role earlier this year as part of the “employee dislocation” that took place at iHeartMedia (the Rockies radio rights holder) – is joining Bonneville’s sports talk KKFN, Denver “Sports Radio 104.3 The Fan.” Schemmel will make appearances on the station’s sports talk programs. ‘The Fan’ will also air his “Amazing Americans” program on Sunday mornings, effective April 26. Schemmel will contribute to the station’s website and social media platforms, as well. KKFN program director Raj Sharan says, “There is no more respected figure in Denver media than Jerry Schemmel. He’s a man of the highest integrity and professionalism. Jerry has served as the soundtrack of so many great Denver sports moments. It’s only fitting that in the year of our 25th anniversary, we welcome back one of the legendary voices in the history of our radio station.” Prior to his booth work for the Rockies, Schemmel was a radio and TV play-by-play man for the Denver Nuggets.
WGN-AM, Chicago Brings Paul Harvey’s ‘The Rest of the Story’ Back. The voice of legendary broadcaster Paul Harvey is returning to the airwaves in Chicago on Nexstar Media’s WGN-AM for a limited time, beginning April 27. The late newscaster’s daily feature – “The Rest of the Story” – will be aired on the station’s morning drive show starring host Bob Sirott. WGN Radio and WGN America EVP Sean Compton says, “Paul Harvey’s radio adventure made him one of the most influential personalities in history. It’s an honor for WGN Radio to re-introduce his amazing body of work to those of us who miss him and to a younger generation which didn’t have the privilege of growing up with him.” WGN notes that Bob Sirott and Paul Harvey crossed paths in 1986 when Sirott interviewed him for a profile that aired on the CBS news magazine program, “West 57th.”
Proud Papa Zeoli. Pictured above is WPHT, Philadelphia morning drive host Rich Zeoli in the hospital with his wife, Brigid, and their newborn daughter Reagan Eileen (6 lbs.-4.4 oz. and 19”). Reagan Eileen came into the world at 10:24 on Thursday morning.
COVID-19 Statistics and Projections Top News/Talk Story for Week of April 13-17. The national tally of confirmed coronavirus cases, estimates of actual cases, the death toll and projections about future cases were the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio this week, collectively landing atop the Talkers TenTM. At #2 this week was the shuttered U.S. economy and the CARES Act. Coming in at #3 was the state of the health care system in the country’s hot spots, followed by the presidential race and politics at #4. The Talkers TenTM is a weekly chart of the top stories and people discussed on news/talk radio this week and is the result of ongoing research from TALKERS magazine. It is published every Friday at Talkers.com. See this this week’s complete chart here.
Music Radio News and Career Moves. On-air pro Mollie Kendrick joins Entercom’s CHR KUDL, Sacramento “106.5 The End” as its new afternoon drive host. Kendrick says, “I’m honored to be joining a team of such talented people at ‘106.5 The End’ who are as dedicated to the craft as I am. I’m excited to connect with listeners in the afternoon as Sacramento’s new BFF and to work with [brand manager] Rayne, [operations manager] Vince Richards and the whole Entercom Sacramento team.” She was most recently morning show host at iHeartMedia’s hot AC KTCZ, Minneapolis “Cities 97.1.”…..Hubbard Radio’s adult hits WARH, St. Louis “106.5 The Arch” names Courtney Landrum the new morning host, leading “The Courtney Show” that also features Brandon “Brando” Luttman and Chris Convy. She was most recently morning host at Entercom’s crosstown hot AC KYKY “Y-98.” WARH brand/content manager Marty Linck said in a release. “She also has great chemistry with Brando and Chris, so it will be fun to hear them add to the overall ‘Arch’ experience.” Landrum and crew take over for Stacey Boyer and Jonah Griss-Bush, who exited last month…..The nationally syndicated “Dana Cortez Show” is presenting virtual job fairs via Facebook Live. She and co-hosts DJ Automatic and Anthony A are facilitating the fairs daily. The show says it has had success, recently connecting an employer with 20 construction workers he hired and put to work immediately. Cortez says, “Our listeners are our family and during this time when we all are experiencing change, uncertainty and even loss of income, we need to bring the family together to help any way we can. There is so much out of our control right now but using our platform to connect people to opportunities is something we can do and are dedicated to continuing.”