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Thursday, June 10, 2021

| June 10, 2021

TALKERS Magazine’s 2021 Heavy Hundred Published . The 2021 edition of TALKERS magazine’s “100 Most Important Radio Talk Show Hosts in America” – a.k.a. The Heavy Hundred – has been published. This highly anticipated ranking of America’s talk radio hosts from the editors of TALKERS is published annually. TALKERS executive editor Kevin Casey says, “This is one of the most challenging projects TALKERS undertakes each year. The large number of quality talk radio hosts working in America makes this job a very difficult one. While longtime talk pros tend to dominate the list, each year the Heavy Hundred reveals some new faces that prove there is fresh, new talent eager to undertake the hard work necessary to build a successful talk radio career.” TALKERS magazine congratulates the members of this year’s Heavy Hundred. See the list here.

Michael Cohen Exploring Wider Audience for ‘Mea Culpa’ Program. TALKERS learns that Krantz Media Group’s Gary Krantz is feeling out major groups and networks about a project featuring former Donald Trump attorney, New York Times best-selling author, and successful podcaster Michael Cohen, who is eyeing a wider, diverse, and immediate live audience for his “Mea Culpa” podcast. KMG is in the process of talking with the major groups/networks for a Monday – Friday show on terrestrial radio stations, networks, and platforms across the United States. The new show is an obvious extension and progression of Cohen’s podcast. “Mea Culpa Radio” is an insider’s discussion of the major news of the day in politics and government today and not biased to the right or the left. Recent guests have included Stormy Daniels, Donny Deutch, CNN’s Don Lemon, Rosie O’Donnell, Ben Stiller, and Adam Carolla. Krantz says, “We’ve been talking to Michael since before his book and podcast came out and the response is explosive. The time is right to take it to radio. He is the ultimate insider to the current narrative in our country and his perspective, knowledge, and ability to converse with the biggest newsmakers in the world make for extremely compelling radio.” “Mea Culpa Radio” will launch in the third quarter of 2021. Check out the podcast here.

Former RI Trump Chair Alleges WPRO’s Dan Yorke ‘Defamed’ Him. According to a piece in the Providence Journal, former Donald Trump Rhode Island campaign co-chair Gerald Zarrella is alleging that WPRO-AM/WEAN-FM, Providence afternoon drive talk host Dan Yorke defamed him. Though no suit has been filed, Zarrella’s attorney has filed a miscellaneous petition in Rhode Island Superior Court seeking to issue subpoenas and depose Yorke. This comes after a political fundraiser Zarrella was planning for Democratic Governor Dan McKee was canceled because McKee wanted nothing to do with anyone associated (or formerly associated) with Donald Trump and this was apparently discussed on Yorke’s WPRO program. The court petition says that Yorke “while on air, made defamatory and offensive statements about Gerald Zarrella which painted Gerald Zarrella in a false light and was stated with the intent to cause harm to his name, reputation and ethnic group from which he derives.” Zarrella tells the Journal, “I’m proud that I’m an Italian-American from Rhode Island. To portray us all as Mafia or crooked people, we’re not crooked people. We’re not crooked people. We’re sensitive people. We have families. We raise children. We pay our dues. I want to get the tapes.” Cumulus Media, WPRO, and Yorke have not commented on the matter.

Doug Stephan Show Adds Seven Affiliates. The nationally syndicated “DJV Show” – hosted by Doug Stephan – announces it has added seven new radio stations to its roster of affiliates. The program features Jen Horn and Victoria Keelan, along with Jai Kershner anchoring the daily “What’s Trending Report,” in addition to Stephan himself. It now airs in more than 325 markets nationwide. Stations adding the program to their lineups include: KTLR, Oklahoma City; WCAP, Lowell, Massachusetts; KUJ-AM, Walla Walla, Washington; WKCT-AM/FM, Bowling Green, Kentucky; and KLID-AM, Poplar Bluff, Kentucky. The program is syndicated by Radio America and is repped by Sun Broadcast Group and AdLarge Media. Doug Stephan comments, “It’s exciting to see the show continue to grow after all these years. We welcome these new stations to a new and different way to start their day.”

Bloomberg Beefs Up Washington, DC Coverage. There are a number of personnel moves to report from Bloomberg. Global head of television and radio Al Mayers announces that Jodi Schneider is taking over as Bloomberg TV and Radio’s political news director while Annmarie Hordern and Joe Mathieu are joining as Washington correspondents covering the White House and Capitol Hill. Bloomberg government senior congressional reporters Emily Wilkins and Jack Fitzpatrick will continue to contribute to daily coverage and round out Bloomberg’s air team with contributors Rick Davis and Jeanne Zaino. Mathieu joins Bloomberg from public media’s WGBH Radio in Boston where he was the host of “Morning Edition.” Prior to that, he was the morning anchor at WBZ-AM, Boston. Hordern returns to the U.S. from London where she was most recently anchor of “Bloomberg Daybreak Europe.”

Salem VP Phil Boyce is This Week’s Guest on Harrison Podcast. Longtime talk radio executive, Phil Boyce, senior VP/spoken word format, Salem Media Group and Salem Radio Network is this week’s guest on the award-winning PodcastOne series, “The Michael Harrison Interview.” Boyce, who also serves as Salem’s operations VP, New York region, which includes WMCA and WNYM “AM970 the Answer,” is one of the most influential news/talk radio programmers of the past quarter century having been a significant influence in the careers of dozens of leading personalities including Sean Hannity and Mark Levin. Before joining Salem, Boyce served as program director of such major stations as WJR, Detroit and WABC, New York in addition to an influential stint as VP of programming for ABC Radio. In a candid wide-ranging conversation, Harrison and Boyce discuss the basic tenets of talk radio as well as political aspects of social media bias, “cancel culture” censorship and principles of the First Amendment. Don’t miss this! To listen to the podcast in its entirety, please click here. Phil Boyce will be one of 50 industry speakers at TALKERS 2021 tomorrow (6/11).

TALKERS News Notes. Chicago media writer Robert Feder reports that former WLS-AM and WGN-AM talk show host Roe Conn has joined the Office of Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart as a senior project manager in which he’s currently working on a crime analytics team specializing in vehicular hijacking and roadway shootings. Conn tells Feder, “It’s definitely an unexpected pivot, but Chicago is where I’m from and where I always want to be. It’s been the honor of a lifetime to be part of Chicago’s radio landscape – especially on two of the continent’s most legendary stations. But our town is facing a tough battle ahead and I couldn’t be more proud to get the chance to work alongside these amazing men and women who try to make our streets safer and our city better.”…..At 12:00 noon ET today (6/10), Premiere Networks nationally syndicated personality, political commentator and podcaster Ben Ferguson makes an appearance on FOX News Channel’s “Outnumbered.” He’ll be the #OneLuckyGuy to discuss the latest news stories and headlines for a full hour with the hosts, Harris Faulkner, Emily Compagno, Kayleigh McEnany, and Kennedy…..The Digital Division of Nexstar Media announces the promotion of Susan Parker to chief strategy officer/EVP strategy & data for the division. In this newly created role, Parker will oversee all data and strategy functions for the division that extends Nexstar’s audience insights into the digital realm…..PodcastOne announces it is now producing and distributing the “Innovation on the Edge with Microsoft Edge” podcast hosted by  Jordan Harbinger and television host and lifestyle expert Chelsea Briggs, who will trade hosting duties through the limited run series. “Innovation on the Edge with Microsoft Edge” is a weekly podcast that explores the cutting edge of Internet innovation and pop culture trends. Each of the ten planned episodes will dig into how people are currently using the web to innovate, notable ways in which it’s evolving, what its future might look like, and how we can create that future together.

Joe Biden’s European Trip, Kamala Harris’ Latin America Trip, COVID-19, Critical Race Theory, Ransomware Attacks, Keystone XL Project Abandoned, Alzheimer’s Drug Controversy, and California Drought Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (6/10). President Joe Biden’s meeting with European allies and his coming meeting with Vladimir Putin; Vice President Kamala Harris’ Latin America trip and her glib response to why she hasn’t visited the U.S.-Mexico border yet; the fast-falling rate of COVID-19 cases in the U.S., vaccine hesitancy and criticism of Dr. Tony Fauci’s emails; the blowback against Critical Race Theory in U.S. schools; the recent ransomware attacks and concerns about the vulnerability of America’s digital infrastructure; the developer of the Keystone XL pipeline drops the project; the controversy over the FDA approval of an Alzheimer’s drug that some experts say is largely ineffective; and the worsening California drought were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

| May 10, 2017

iHeartMedia Names JoJo Turnbeaugh and Kelly Ransford to Posts at Colorado Operations.  Moving from the regional SVP of programming post at iHeartMedia’s Nevada/Central California region to the same position at the company’s Denver market is JoJo Turnbeaugh.  He’ll work with personalities and programmers at the company’s 26 stations in Denver, Colorado Springs and Fort Collins markets.  iHeartMedia Denver region president Tim Hager says, “As a Denver native, JoJo has a great understanding of the legendary brands that encompass the Denver region and our greatest asset: the people who operate them.  A job of this scope comes with great responsibility and I know JoJo is the leader we need for this vital role.”  At the same time, the company officially welcomes Kelly Ransford to the Denver cluster as director of event marketing.  She’ll be responsible for spearheading the cluster’s multiple events throughout the year and will work closely with SVP of sales Ryan Clune on sponsorships and revenue opportunities.  She will also work with the stations’ programming departments to promote the market’s events on air and online.  She was most recently with CBS RADIO’s triple A WXRT, Chicago as music director.  Her previous experience in marketing and planning includes time at KMTT-FM and KNDD-FM in Seattle and KFOG-FM, San Francisco, California.  She began her career in Denver at iHeartMedia’s news/talk KOA-AM/FM and rock KBCO-FM.

TALKERS Magazine’s 2017 Heavy Hundred to Be Published on May 23.  This year’s edition of the “100 Most Important Radio Talk Show Hosts in America” – also known as the Heavy Hundred – will be published by TALKERS magazine on Monday, May 23.  This 23rd edition of the Heavy Hundred is compiled by the editors of TALKERS and inclusion is based upon a combination of hard factors such as ratings, revenue and longevity, plus soft factors including effort, impact, recognition, service, talent and uniqueness.  Executive editor Kevin Casey says, “As we put the finishing touches on this year’s Heavy Hundred, we’re reminded how difficult it is – not only to select the 100 most important talk show hosts – but also of the challenge in ranking these fine radio talk show hosts.  A small number of these hosts have been on the list since its debut, but there are also a number of fresh faces that reflect the changing flavor of the talk radio industry.”

Joe Pags Show Hits 95 Affiliate Mark with KRLD-AM, Dallas Addition.  WOAI, San Antonio-based Joe “Pags” Pagliarulo is now heard in Dallas as CBS RADIO adds “The Joe Pags Show” for the evening daypart on KRLD-AM.  The addition to Joe Pags’ affiliate roster puts his program on in virtually every market in his home state of Texas and extends his list of affiliates to 95.  Pags states, “It is an absolute privilege to be a part of a station with so much heritage and a track record for being an industry leader in news and talk.  I’m thrilled to be on KRLD!”  Pagliarulo’s program is syndicated by Compass Media Networks.

McKay: Norway’s DAB TroublesTALKERS magazine special features correspondent Jeff McKay visited Oslo, Norway this spring and witnessed first-hand how radio listening is being affected by that country’s mandated switch from AM/FM to DAB radio.  The problem, McKay reports, is the cost.  The Norse were told the country would adopt the DAB platform for radio in 2015 and it would be each citizen’s responsibility to acquire DAB radios for their homes and cars.  The trouble is that people tend to procrastinate and don’t like to spend several hundred dollars to replace the radios in their cars that work just fine.  Except that soon, they won’t work just fine.  Read McKay’s report here.

TALKERS News Notes. It its latest State of the Market Report for the first quarter of 2017, the New York Market RadioNYMRAD – notes that “radio listenership in New York is up 1.45% from December 2016 to January 2017 (this according to Triton Digital).”  The report also points out recent growth in the professional services and pharmaceuticals industries, suggesting they are prime candidates to benefit from radio campaigns, in part because “radio listeners trust the news that they hear on the radio.  Sixty-eight percent consider radio trustworthy, whereas only 25% of those who get their news on social media deem it to be trustworthy.  The majority, 88% of Republicans and 89%% of Democrats, believe it not likely that they will encounter fake news on local radio.  The trust in local radio benefits advertisers, as listeners will transfer that trust in their local radio station’s news reporting to their advertising.”  Read it here…..iHeartRadio and Arianna Huffington’s Thrive Global are launching the first episode of the “Thrive Global Podcast With iHeartRadio” all about health and well-being.  On the podcast, Arianna hosts one-on-one interviews with notable celebrities, athletes and influencers to discuss how they thrive and how listeners can enhance their own lives.  The premiere episode features a conversation with Jennifer Aniston.  Upcoming guests include Golden State Warriors star Andre Iguodala, business mogul Mark Cuban, and best-selling author Glennon Doyle Melton.

Trump Fires James Comey, Trump-Russia Connection Investigation, GOP Health Care Plan, More Troops to Afghanistan, North Korea Nuclear Program/Threats Against U.S., L.A. Declares Schools Sanctuaries, and MLB, NBA and NHL Action Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (5/9).  President Donald Trump fires FBI director James Comey; the investigation into possible connections between Trump campaign officials and Russian agents; the GOP plan to replace the Affordable Care Act with its own health care plan; the Trump Administration’s intent to increase U.S. troops in Afghanistan by as much as 5,000; ongoing speculation about North Korea’s nuclear weapons program and threats against the U.S. by Kim Jong Un; the Los Angeles public schools declare the schools sanctuaries; and MLB, NBA and NHL action were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Talk Host Dr. Asa to Co-Host New TV Show for Discovery Life.  Improving the lifestyles of people with diabetes is the goal of the new show co-hosted by nationally syndicated radio and TV personality Dr. Asa Andrew and celebrity chef Charles Mattocks.  The two have partnered to launch WellTent Media Group LLC, a joint venture designed to create health-based content that inspires true lifestyle transformations.  The two have both appeared frequently on various shows on FOX, NBC, ABC, and CNN with their insights toward improving lifestyle choices for people struggling with diabetes and chronic disease.  Their first project is titled, “Reversed,” that will air in July on the Discovery Life Channel.  The show is designed as reality TV intended to present the powerful effects of unmanaged diabetes and the hope of reversal.  It will showcase the struggles and the triumphs of five individuals living with diabetes as they work to radically transform their lifestyle choices.  The show will have an evidence-based team of nutritionists, trainers, doctors, therapists, and celebrity guests focused on the common goal of improving the health and well-being of each person living with diabetes.  Dr. Asa says, “Better health begins with better choices.  ‘Reversed’ is about transforming the behavior of those fighting diabetes.  I am thrilled to partner with Charles Mattocks in WellTent Media, we share a common mission and this is just the beginning. In my years of coaching and clinical experience, our shows may just be the most powerful version of an inspirational office visit to those watching for empowering your health.”

Michael Harrison Interviews Legendary Stray Cats Drummer, Slim Jim Phantom on “Up Close and Far Out” Podcast. Back in the 1980s, a rock ‘n’ roll group comprised of three kids from Massapequa, Long Island called the Stray Cats set the international music world on fire with a sound that came to be known as “neo-rockabilly.” Their music and appearance was based on the authentic style of such 1950s artists as Elvis Presley, Buddy Holly, Carl Perkins, Jerry Lee Lewis, Gene Vincent and Eddie Cochran with a distinctly modern flare. The Stray Cats were comprised of lead guitarist Brian Setzer, bassist Lee Rocker and drummer Slim Jim Phantom (aka James McDonnell). They released multi-platinum albums and were embraced and befriended by classic rock acts like the Rolling Stones and Led Zeppelin, as well as original punk heroes such as the Sex Pistols, the Damned, and the Clash… and even rock ‘n’ roll originators Carl Perkins and Jerry Lee Lewis. Now at 55, well-spoken Slim Jim Phantom, lives in Los Angeles, still plays drums, dabbles in radio, plays senior league softball, is a dad and has compiled his fascinating rock ‘n’ roll stories into a book titled A Stray Cat Struts: My Life as a Rockabilly Rebel (Thomas Dunne Books/St. Martin’s Press, 2016). He joins TALKERS founder Michael Harrison (an old rocker himself) as the guest on this week’s informative and fun installment of the award-winning PodcastOne series “Up Close and Far Out.” To listen to the podcast in its entirety, please click here or click on the “Up Close and Far Out” player box located in the right-hand column on every page of Talkers.com.

 

 

Music Radio News and Career Moves. At Detroit country outlet WYCD, CBS RADIO promotes afternoon drive co-host Holly Hutton, adding music director to her day-to-day responsibilities.  Hutton moved to WYCD from sister station classic hits WOMC in August of last year, taking over for the late Linda Lee on the afternoon show.  CBS RADIO VP of country Tim Roberts states, “Holly’s in-depth experience dealing with the music industry, as well as her understanding of programming has been evident from the beginning.  She lives, eats and breathes the country lifestyle.  Holly will be a great asset to the music and programming efforts of WYCD.”…..Cumulus Media agrees to a multi-year extension for KRBE, Houston evening host Tyler Frye.   He joined the station in April of 2015.  KRBE program director Leslie Whittle says, “Tyler made an immediate impact when we launched ‘H-Town Live with Tyler Frye on KRBE’ two years ago.  He understands there’s more to being a great personality than just doing an amazing show.  He has a unique ability to personally connect with our listeners through fantastic digital content and focuses on what’s happening today in Houston.  I look forward to another incredible two years of working with Tyler!”…..Air personality and programmer Shawn Williams exits the Cumulus New Orleans station group where she was morning host on alternative WZRH “106.1 The Underground” and afternoon jock on country WRKN “NASH FM 92.3,” as well as serving as assistant program director…..At the corporate level at Cox Media Group, Ashley Peterson is named the new senior director of human resources.