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Thursday, July 14, 2022

| July 14, 2022

KFNX, Phoenix Owner Bill Brady is This Week’s Guest on Harrison Podcast. The veteran radio broadcaster who rolled up his sleeves in 2019 and fulfilled his lifelong dream of owning and operating a radio station by acquiring news/talker KFNX (1100 AM) in Phoenix is this week’s guest on the award-winning PodcastOne series, “The Michael Harrison Interview.” Michael Harrison has known and closely followed the solid career of Bill Brady since hiring him as program director and afternoon drive host at WSPR, Springfield in 1986. Harrison says, “Bill Brady is one of the smartest, most-talented, and dedicated talk radio broadcasters on either side of the microphone that I have ever met, and I’m delighted to have him on the podcast this week to talk about hosting and managing in 2022.” In his steadfast career, Brady served in a number of key industry positions on air and in sales management in large market radio and television as well as the newspaper business. His resume includes stints with Clear Channel Radio, Citadel Communications, Comcast and the Miami Herald. His radio background includes the aforementioned WSPR, Springfield; WQBK, Albany and WPRO, Providence among others. When Brady purchased KFNX right before the pandemic hit, he vowed to upgrade the Phoenix talk outlet to competitor status by eliminating much of its brokered clutter, adding high-caliber syndication and local shows (including his own 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm daily program) bolstering the sales initiative, instituting a modern expansion of its digital presence and growing its community involvement and outreach. He is well on his way to achieving his goals. News/talk radio practitioners will find this interview illuminating. To listen to the podcast in its entirety, please click here.

Cary Pahigian Named VP/GM of Salem News Channel. Broadcasting industry management pro Cary Pahigian is named vice president and general manager for Salem Media Group’s Salem News Channel (SNC), effective July 18. Pahigian was most recently president and GM for Hearst Television’s news/talk WBAL-AM and rock WIYY-FM in Baltimore. Salem SVP of spoken word Phil Boyce states, “Cary has been an active, hands-on executive in radio for years, but his last eight years at Hearst Television prepared him well for the burgeoning OTT television market. In Cary we have a strong experienced general manager, who will help us get SNC to the next level. Cary was ready for the next adventure in his long and storied career, and we are extremely fortunate to have that opportunity to give him.” Salem says the new SNC platform “is providing news-oriented content using a combination of Salem Radio Network hosts, and new TV-only content, and recently began top- and bottom-of-the-hour news capsules.” Pahigian will supervise all elements of production on the network including talent, content, sales, marketing, and social media. He comments, “I have long admired Salem Media Group’s unique culture and dedication to community service, quality content and client partnerships. Salem News Channel has put Salem Media Group front and center in the fast-growing video streaming arena with a lineup of prominent hosts and straightforward news and analysis.”

Round Two of June PPMs Released. The second of four rounds of ratings information from Nielsen Audio’s June 2022 PPM survey has been released for 12 markets including Washington, Boston, Miami, Seattle, Detroit, Phoenix, Minneapolis, San Diego, Tampa, Denver, Baltimore, and St. Louis. Nielsen’s June 2022 sweep covered May 26 – June 22. Today, TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian presents his Ratings Takeaways from this group of markets. In Washington, Cumulus Media’s news/talk WMAL-FM adds two-tenths for a 4.1 share (weekly, 6+ AQH share) finish lifting it up to the #7 rank, while Hubbard Radio’s crosstown all-news WTOP falls nine-tenths to a 6.9 share but remains ranked #3. iHeartMedia’s news/talk WRKO, Boston dips eight-tenths to finish with a 3.4 share good for the #11 rank as sister all-news WBZ-AM is steady at a 4.8 share and stays ranked #6. In Seattle, Bonneville’s news/talk KIRO-FM is ranked #1 after adding four-tenths for a 7.3 share finish, while Lotus Communications’ all-news KNWN-AM/FM falls six-tenths for a 3.3 share finish good for the #14 rank. You can see Mike Kinosian’s complete Ratings Takeaways from this group of markets (as well as yesterday’s round one) here.

Beasley Unveils New PM Drive Show for ‘97.5 The Fanatic’ in Philly. The new afternoon drive show at Beasley Media Group’s WPEN-FM, Philadelphia “97.5 The Fanatic” is announced. In the wake of longtime PM drive host Mike Missanelli’s May departure, the station unveils “The Best Show Ever?” featuring (pictured from l-r) former MLB pitcher and NBC Sports Philadelphia analyst Ricky Bottalico, digital sports media influencer Hunter Brody, air personality Jennifer Scordo, and current “Fanatic” personality Tyrone Johnson. The 2:00 pm to 6:00 pm program that will be simulcast on NBC Sports Philadelphia debuts on August 1. Beasley VP and market manager Joe Bell says, “When you put long time ‘Fanatic’ personality Tyrone Johnson together with social media star Hunter Brody and former Phillies pitcher Ricky Bottalico, then mix in ‘Ring Master’ Jenn Scordo, you’re going to have some exciting afternoons on ‘The Fanatic.’” Station PD Chuck Damico adds, “Philadelphia fans are the best fans ever and they deserve ‘The Best Show Ever?’ We look forward to this diverse group of passionate sports experts providing some of the most entertaining sports talk in Philadelphia.”

Morgan Zegers Latest Addition to Salem Podcast Network. The latest addition to Salem Media Group’s growing slate of programs on its Salem Podcast Network is Morgan Zegers. Her eponymous podcast officially joins the platform on July 18. Salem Media Group VP of spoken word Phil Boyce states, “When we talk to consumers about podcasts, they keep telling us to give them more young, female hosts. Morgan is a perfect example of the nation’s young females taking a stand in favor of America, and we could not be more pleased to add her to SPN.” The 25-year-old Zegers comments, “I am so honored to join the Salem Podcast Network with my show highlighting key issues and events in our nation from the perspective of a young conservative woman. Americans, especially members of my generation, are sold a heap of lies by our education system, media, and pop culture. To get America back on track, we must embrace our roots, rethink education and leadership, and take back control of ourselves, our families, and our country. I hope to inspire my listeners to join into this hopeful and mindful American mentality! I’m thankful to Salem for giving me the opportunity to grow with their support.”

Wayne Allyn Root Featured at FreedomFest Convention. Las Vegas-based, USA Radio Network-syndicated talk radio host Wayne Allyn Root is playing a couple of roles at this week’s FreedomFest conference in Las Vegas. The event, billed as “a big tent event that strives for attendees to come to a deeper understanding of freedom and important social issues through open conversations, debate and civil discourse by bringing together a variety of perspectives” will include Root on a Saturday (7/16) panel debate exploring the question “Was the 2020 election stolen and is Trump the best choice for the 2024 GOP nomination?” Root will also serve as the “judge” during a debate over the legalization of drugs.  Root tells TALKERS magazine that on Saturday he will also announce not one, but two TV deals he has signed.

Cox Media Group Sells CoxReps and Gamut. Noting that this sale will allow Cox Media Group to “focus on our core businesses,” the company announces it is selling national television rep firm CoxReps and multiplatform ad firm Gamut to private equity firm One Equity Partners. The terms of the deal have not been disclosed. OEP managing director Andrew Dunn states, “OEP is thrilled to begin its investment partnership with these two superb teams leading two companies at the forefront of the television advertising and digital streaming industries. While both CoxReps and Gamut are leaders in their respective markets, and will continue to operate as sibling companies, we expect to foster even greater collaboration between them, increasing the flow of advertising dollars into local video. We will assist these efforts with increasing investment in technology and by capitalizing on OEP’s own deep expertise in the media industry.”

Industry Mourns Tanita Myers. Radio programming pro Tanita Myers – VP of news operations for iHeartMedia’s Black Information Network – died unexpectedly at age 49 on Tuesday (7/12). The Black Information Network posted news of her death on its website, including part of a memo from BIN president Tony Coles, who wrote: “Tanita was a passionate leader, a champion of women in journalism, and one of the driving forces behind the Black Information Network. We are a better organization because of her dedication to our mission, and we are better humans because of her love, her humor, and her spirit. While she took great pride in her work, it was her friends and family who brought her the most joy. Tanita’s smile always got a bit brighter when she spoke about her mom and her son Brandon.” Myers joined iHeartMedia’s Black Information Network in June 2020, following 15 years at Reach Media where she was senior director of radio operations. She previously served as director of operations for “The Tom Joyner Morning Show” and executive producer of “The Rickey Smiley Morning Show.”

TALKERS News Notes. WNRI, Woonsocket, Rhode Island midday talk host John DePetro is now also heard on Audacy’s WPHT, Philadelphia on Saturday mornings from 10:00 am to 11:00 am. In addition to his radio work, DePetro is a frequent contributor to Newsmax TV…..The Independent Broadcasters Association announced it will conduct the IBA Fall 2022 National Cash Contest, its fifth since the birth of the IBA in 2020. IBA president and executive director Ron Stone says, “We fully expect this upcoming IBA National Cash Contest to be the most successful campaign we’ve done so far! IBA member stations invest $300 to leverage thousands of prize monies, making this the best ratings and revenue opportunity ever presented. But remember, stations must be an IBA member to participate. Nearly $3 million in sponsorship revenue has been generated for participating IBA member stations thus far, with an average of 14.7 to 1 ROI.”…..The Society of Broadcast Engineers is holding its national meeting, awards dinner, board of directors and committee meetings at the Ramada by Wyndham in Liverpool, New York on September 28 and 29. The event includes the SBE22 Broadcast and Technology Expo with a trade show exhibit hall and technical sessions.

The Economy, Biden in Middle East, January 6 Hearings, Midterms/2024 Presidential Race, Southern Border Crisis, Russia-Ukraine War, Abortion Battle, Musk vs Twitter, and COVID-19 Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (7/13). The latest inflation report, pressure on the Fed to raise interest rates again, and fears of a recession; President Joe Biden’s visit to the Middle East; the ongoing January 6 hearings; November’s midterms elections and speculation about who the nominees will be for the 2024 presidential race; the migrant problem at the U.S.-Mexico border; Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine and Vladimir Putin’s potential arms deal with Iran; the abortion rights battles at the state level after the Supreme Court’s reversal of Roe v Wade; Elon Musk’s legal battle with Twitter over his canceled takeover bid; and the spread of the coronavirus BA.5 variant were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Wednesday, June 1, 2022

| June 1, 2022

Chris Camp Retires from WSB, Atlanta News Director Role. The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s Rodney Ho reports that after 28 years leading the news department at Cox Media Group’s WSB-AM/WSBB-FM, Atlanta, Chris Camp is retiring from that station and his role as news director. The story indicates that assistant news director Amanda Moyer will step up to the news director role and Jennifer Perry will rise to assistant news director. The 63-year-old Camp says that around Christmas of last year he made the decision to retire and return to New England where he’s from and where most of his family still lives. Camp tells the AJC, “It’s time for somebody else to shepherd this ship and take it to the new heights.”

 

Mike Missanelli and ‘97.5 The Fanatic’ Part Company. Philadelphia sports talk host Mike Missanelli announced to his listeners on Tuesday that it would be his last day leading the afternoon drive program on Beasley Media Group’s WPEN-FM “97.5 The Fanatic.” According to a report by NBC 10 Philadelphia, Missanelli told his audience that his contract is expiring in a couple of weeks and “he and the company have decided to go in different directions.” He added that Beasley has a new program under contract to fill the daypart. Missanelli, who previously served with crosstown sports talker WIP, had been hosting at WPEN for 12 years.

 

Remembering William O’Shaughnessy. TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian presents this look at the life and career of radio executive William O’Shaughnessy, who passed away on Saturday (5/28) at 84 after a battle with cancer. Kinosian writes, “Those privileged to spend time with the perfectly coiffed president & editorial director of Whitney Radio’s WVOX-AM & WVIP-FM were guaranteed to be regaled with classic radio nuggets spun in extraordinary style and vibrant flair. Queries on any subject produced at least a handful of animated recollections, all eloquently crafted by the classy O’Shaughnessy, who frequently and delightfully referred to himself in the third-person.” Read his piece here.

 

TALKERS News Notes. Chicago media writer Robert Feder reports that Salem Media Group’s news/talk WIND, Chicago “AM 560 The Answer” is hosting what is expected to be the final GOP debate before the June 28 Illinois primary. The debate is taking place on June 23 at McAninch Arts Center at the College of DuPage in Glen Ellyn. News director Mike Scott will serve as moderator and WIND morning co-host Amy Jacobson and Illinois Radio Network’s Greg Bishop will serve as panelists. WIND program director Marcus Brown states, “As Chicago’s leading conservative media outlet, we look forward to providing a forum for the Republican candidates for governor to address our audience and make their closing arguments. We know that our listeners will be the ones that decide the outcome of this election, and we expect a spirited and informative exchange of ideas at our debate just a few short days before the election.”…..In celebration of Pride Month, Audacy all-news outlets WINS and WCBS-AM in New York are launching “It’s OK to Say Gay,” a new LGBTQIA+ podcast focused on various topics affecting the LGBTQIA+ community. The podcast is being hosting by managing producer of podcasts Femi Redwood, who says, “As some LGBTQ people feel like they’re being forced back into the closet due to legislation like the ‘Don’t Say Gay’ bills, queer and trans voices are more important than ever before. With humor and honesty, the new ‘It’s OK To Say Gay’ podcast brings together diverse voices across the LGBTQIA+ spectrum that rarely get to be heard.”…..iHeartRadio announces a deal with Victoria’s Secret and Amanda de Cadenet to bring “VS Voices” to the iHeartPodcast Network. The podcast “builds on the Victoria’s Secret vision of being a leading advocate for women by highlighting stories of trailblazers who have paved the way for other women to succeed today and beyond.” De Cadanet says, “Storytelling with a purpose is what I have focused on for most of my career. I am looking forward to continuing that mission in partnership with iHeart, and to amplify the powerful life experiences that my guests share with me. With each of the podcasts we will be able to tell a wide variety of stories, from the profound and insightful, to those that are simply entertaining. I’m excited to be launching this audio trifecta!”…..Virtual News Center announces that a group of stations owned by Southern Broadcasting LLC joins its roster of affiliate stations. WTKI, Huntsville; WSLV, Ardmore, Tennessee; WIEZ, Decatur, Alabama; WYDL, Middleton, Tennessee; and WWGM, Selmer, Tennessee are now using the Virtual News Center services.

 

Uvalde Shooting Investigation/Gun Control, Inflation/Recession Fears, Russia-Ukraine War, COVID-19, Durham Investigation, SCOTUS Leak Investigation, and China’s Taiwan Ambitions Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (5/31). The investigation into the timeline of the Uvalde, Texas shooting that left 19 students and two teachers dead and the topic of gun legislation; the still soaring price of gasoline & food and the concerns about a recession; Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine and the global economic repercussions; the rate of COVID-19 cases in the U.S. and the impact of restrictions and mandates; special counsel John Durham’s probe into the Trump-Russia investigation and the acquittal of former Hillary Clinton lawyer Michael Sussman; the intensifying investigation into the leak of the Supreme Court’s potential overturning of Roe v Wade; and China’s military interest in Taiwan were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Friday, October 15, 2021

| October 15, 2021

NOW POSTED: This Weekend’s Installment of “The Michael Harrison Wrap: An Overview of the National Conversation.” The latest installment of the 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. This new episode titled, “Boosters and Rockets,” looks back at this past week of 10/11 – 10/15. The program features guests (in order of appearance): Kevin Casey, executive editor, TALKERSDr. Daliah Wachs, talk show host, Genesis Communications Network/physician; Dom Giordano, talk show host, WPHT, Philadelphia; Victoria Jones, executive director, DC Radio CompanyRichard Neer, talk show host, WFAN, New York; and Dr. Renee Kohanski, medical field podcaster/forensic psychiatrist.  The 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 WTIC, Hartford; KSCO, Santa Cruz, CA; KDFD, Denver; KFNX, Phoenix; KTLK-FM, St. Louis; WPG, Atlantic City, NJ; WVLY, Wheeling, WV; WTRW-FM, Scranton/Wilkes Barre, PA; WVOX, Westchester, NY; KBDT, Dallas; KQSP, Minneapolis; KBKW, Aberdeen, WA; WGDJ, Albany, NY;  WJFN-FM, Richmond, VA; WZFG, Fargo; KTGO, Tioga, ND; KWAM, Memphis; K-NEWS, San Luis Obispo; WGMD, Rehoboth Beach, DE; WCHM, Clarkesville, GA;  WPHM, Port Huron, MI; KSYL, Alexandria, LA; KTOE, Mankato, MN; WCED, DuBois, PA; K-NEWS 101.3, Owensboro, KY; WWTK, Sebring, FL; WSAR-AM/FM, Fall River, MA; WIZM-AM/FM, La Crosse, WI; WMVA, Martinsville, VA; KQEN, Roseburg, OR; the Virginia Talk Radio NetworkCRN Digital Talk Radio Network; the iHeart Podcast NetworkPioneer Valley Radio, Springfield, MA; Podcast Radio, UK and many more.  To listen to this week’s episode, 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.

Kristine Bellino Joins WIBX-AM, Utica Morning Show. Television and radio pro Kristine Bellino returns to Townsquare Media’s WIBX-AM, Utica, New York to serve as morning news anchor and co-host of the “First News with Keeler in the Morning” program, effective Monday (10/18). Townsquare says that Bellino has worked in television, radio, and cable TV, most recently as director of programming and audience development and morning show host at public radio outlet WCPE-FM, Raleigh. She has also produced and hosted a podcast on sustainability and dreams of owning an off-the-grid farm one day. Bellino says, “I am thrilled to be working with Bill Keeler and Andrew Derminio in the morning again, I am beyond excited! Returning to our adopted hometown of Utica is an inspiring homecoming for my family. Returning to TSM and [market president] Karen Carey’s team means doing it right.”

FOX News Inks Book Deal with HarperCollins. A new deal between FOX News Books, the publishing imprint of FOX News Media, and HarperCollins calls for the publication of six new titles. FOX News Media CEO Suzanne Scott says, “We are thrilled to once again partner with HarperCollins, furthering the multiplatform brand extension of FOX News Media. Over the past 25 years, we have developed a unique connection with our audience and look forward to delivering more of the content they desire from their favorite FOX News personalities through our expanded publishing platform.” Next month, All American Christmas will be the third title from the imprint. Authored by “FOX & Friends Weekend” co-host Rachel Campos-Duffy, along with her husband, FOX News contributor Sean Duffy, the book features an inside look at how the family of 11 celebrates the holidays, showcasing their favorite memories and traditions with stories and photos from over the years. The Duffy’s will also spotlight several FOX News personalities sharing their favorite holiday memories, including stories from Steve Doocy, Ainsley Earhardt, Brian Kilmeade, Bill Hemmer, Dana Perino, Martha MacCallum, Geraldo Rivera, Lawrence Jones, Jesse Watters, John Rich, Charles Payne, and many more.

Cumulus Adds FM Translator to WFTW-AM, Fort Walton Beach. Fort Walton Beach, Florida news/talk WFTW-AM now has an FM translator broadcasting its audio at 107.5 FM. Cumulus Media launched the new signal at 7:00 am this morning (10/15). Cumulus Fort Walton Beach-Destin VP and market manager Ashley Allegretto says, “This is an exciting day for local radio and for the Fort Walton Beach market. We are elated to bring this sought-after content and renowned programming lineup to the FM dial.” Cluster OM and program director Chris Kellogg adds, “The proud tradition of 1260 WFTW continues across multiple streaming platforms and now the addition of 107.5 FM. This deepens our commitment to our conservative community of listeners and businesses and provides multiple access points for news and opinion.”

WGN, Chicago to Present ‘Halloween Radio Theatre.’ Chicago’s WGN Radio will broadcast “Halloween Radio Theatre with Carl Amari” live on Sunday, October 31 from 5:00 pm to 9:00 pm. The show will consist of six half-hour spooky classic radio shows including: “Mystery in the Air” starring Peter Lorre, “Lights Out!,” “The Whistler,” and “Mystery House,” starring Bela Lugosi and John Carradine. Listeners can also expect shorter scary clips and other fun surprises. Amari says, “I’m super excited to be on the air live this Halloween evening to bring WGN listeners some of the spookiest shows from the golden age of radio. It’s going to be a ‘hair-raising’ four hours, so don’t miss it!” Amari has spent decades licensing and preserving original radio broadcasts, is the curator of the Classic Radio Club and board member of the Museum of Broadcast Communications in Chicago.

TALKERS News Notes. A contest from Beasley Media Group and Philadelphia restaurateur John Tripodi is asking WPEN-FM “97.5 The Fanatic” listeners to provide the new name for a restaurant and sports bar. Midday show personality Anthony Gargano unveiled the details for the Name This Restaurant and Sports Bar Contest. The restaurant – located in Bensalem, Pennsylvania – has re-opened but needs a name. The person who comes up with the winning name receives a $100 monthly tab for a year at the location. It’s also the location of the official home of “97.5 The Fanatic’s Football Friday Tailgate with Anthony Gargano” live broadcast (Fridays from 10am to 2pm) and 97.5 The Fanatic’s “Birds Away Game Pre-Game Show with Devon Givens and Derrick Gunn.” WPEN-FM program director Chuck Damico says, “Partnering with John Tripodi and his amazing place for our ‘Name This Restaurant and Sports Bar’ promotion was an opportunity we had to jump at. If you’re not actually at the game, you’re out with friends and enjoying delicious food (maybe a drink or two) and having a great time! This is the next great spot to be doing it and to have the chance to have one of our listeners decide what it’s called. How cool is that?”…..SiriusXM announces its coverage of the 2021-22 NBA season in which it offers live play-by-play of every game from Opening Night through The Finals, plus daily in-depth talk and analysis on SiriusXM NBA Radio. The NBA begins its season on Tuesday (10/19) as the NBA Champion Milwaukee Bucks host the Brooklyn Nets in a rematch of last season’s seven-game conference semifinals series. SiriusXM hosts Frank Isola and Brian Scalabrine will host a special show live from Fiserv Forum in Milwaukee starting at 6:00 pm ET and leading into the game broadcast.

The Economy, Inflation, Supply Chain Woes, and Labor Shortage Combine at Top News/Talk Story for Week of October 11-15. The state of the U.S. economy, the inflation affecting consumer prices, the broken supply chain, and the shortage of workers in the U.S. and abroad combined as the most-talked-about story on news/talk radio this week, landing atop the Talkers TenTM. At #2 this week was the rate of COVID cases in the U.S., booster shots and mask & vaccine mandates, followed by the pandemic’s effect on the politics of education at #3. 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 complete chart here.

Thursday, December 3, 2020

| December 3, 2020

PPM Analysis: All-News. TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian presents his analysis of the performances of radio stations based on data from Nielsen Audio’s November 2020 PPM survey, today focusing on the all-news format. Comparing the October 2020 survey to the November 2020 survey (10/8-11/4), 50% of all-news stations saw their weekly, 6+ AQH share go up while 28% were down and 22% were unchanged. Gainers were led by Entercom’s WWJ-AM, Detroit (+0.6) and KCBS-AM/KFRC-FM, San Jose (+0.5). Comparing year-over-year data, 63% of all-news stations were up with gainers led by iHeartMedia’s WBZ-AM, Boston (+2.2) and Sinclair Broadcast Group’s KOMO-AM/FM, Seattle (+2.0). During the November ratings period, two all-news stations ranked #1 in their respective markets: Hubbard Radio’s WTOP-FM, Washington with a 9.3 share and WBZ-AM, Boston with a 7.0 share. You can see Mike Kinosian’s complete analysis here.

John Kincade Named New Morning Host at WPEN-FM, Philadephia. As a number of Philadelphia radio watchers had predicted, Beasley Media Group brings sports talker John Kincade back to Philadelphia to take over hosting duties at WPEN-FM “97.5 The Fanatic,” effective January 4. Kincade was a longtime host of the “Buck and Kincade” show (with Buck Belue) on Dickey Broadcasting’s WCNN-AM, Atlanta “680 The Fan.” He exited that role back in September as part of a budget-related talent shakeup at the station. He has also served as co-host of “The BIG Podcast with SHAQ” on PodcastOne. WPEN-FM program director Chuck Damico says, “We have a very clear vision for what we want to accomplish at the station and adding John Kincade is a giant leap towards accomplishing those goals. Our team is thrilled that he chose ‘97.5 The Fanatic’ for his homecoming to Philadelphia. We’re excited about the future!” Kincade says, “From the beginning of my search for a new radio home, my conversations with [market manager] Joe Bell and Chuck Damico were the most enthusiastic and interesting. It became clear to me that joining the team at ‘The Fanatic’ was the best place for me to start this next chapter. With guys I have long respected like Mike Missanelli and Anthony Gargano already there, I knew it would be an honor to join their team.”

Former NFLer Geoff Schwartz Joins FOX Sports Radio. Former NFL offensive lineman Geoff Schwartz becomes part of the weekend lineup at FOX Sports Radio where he joins FSR personality Steve Hartman as co-host of the Saturday afternoon program (3:00 pm to 5:00 pm ET). The program debuts on Saturday (12/5) on 400 stations and includes highlights and instant analysis on the weekend in games plus conversations with insiders and experts. Schwartz has served as one of the primary fill-in hosts for FSR’s “Outkick The Coverage with Clay Travis” for the past three years and is a weekly guest on the show. Premiere Networks SVP of sports programming Don Martin says, “Building on what’s already the strongest weekend lineup in the game, Geoff’s entertaining and thoughtful approach takes it up yet another notch. FSR’s talented weekend cast is here to deliver exactly what sports fans want before, during and after games.”

WEEI-FM, Boston Raises $1.5 Million for Jimmy Fund. The COVID-19 pandemic put the kibosh on the annual Jimmy Fund Radio Telethon that takes place every August, so this year Entercom sports talk outlet WEEI-FM, Boston used the national “Giving Tuesday” (the first Tuesday after Thanksgiving) to help raise more than $1.5 million for The Jimmy Fund that directly supports innovative cancer research at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston and helps transform cancer treatment, so patients and their families can spend more time together. Since 2002, WEEI has helped raise nearly $60 million for The Jimmy Fund. Entercom Boston regional president and market manager Mark Hannon says, “This was the first time in 19 years we were unable to hold our annual ‘Jimmy Fund Radio Telethon,’ but this broadcast allowed us to continue supporting the fund’s lifesaving mission to provide compassionate patient care and groundbreaking cancer research for children and adults. I’m very grateful for the widespread support from our listeners and some of New England’s biggest stars to help make this radiothon a success.”

COVID-19 Stats/Vaccines, Biden Transition/Trump Tactics, Georgia Runoff Elections, UN Climate Report, the Economy/New Stimulus Negotiations, and NFL’s COVID Cases Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (12/2). The fast-rising number of COVID-19 cases in the U.S., the climbing death toll, and the rollout of vaccines in the U.K. and Russia; the Joe Biden administration transition process and Donald Trump’s ongoing statements calling the election results into question; the January runoff elections for Georgia’s two U.S. Senate seats; the dire tone of the new UN Climate Report; the state of the U.S. economy and current negotiations for a new COVID relief deal; and the NFL’s handling of positive COVID cases as the season moves toward the playoffs were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Progressive Political Talker and Multi-platform Groundbreaker Stephanie Miller Is This Week’s Guest on Harrison Podcast.  One of the longest-running leaders among the relatively rare species of commercial news/talk radio progressives, Stephanie Miller is this week’s guest on the award-winning PodcastOne series, “The Michael Harrison Interview.” Miller’s daily morning ensemble program, now in the middle of its second decade, has developed a large, active, and extremely loyal national audience through a cross-platform array of venues that includes terrestrial radio, SiriusXM Satellite RadioFree Speech TV, podcasts, and online streaming. During the past several years, this three-decade-plus veteran of talk radio has enjoyed groundbreaking success in bringing her “Sexy Liberal Tour” – a theatrical version of her ensemble radio show – to sold out houses at some of the most prestigious theaters in America. Since that got sidelined in early 2020 by COVID-19, she and her business partner Ron Hartenbaum have successfully morphed it into the “Sexy Liberal Virtual Tour” that has been drawing in gigantic monthly audiences anxious to see and follow what has become a rising force in online political sketch comedy. Ironically, Miller comes to the Left from the Right. She is the daughter of William MillerBarry Goldwater’s 1964 Republican presidential running mate. In a fast-paced, candid, and informal conversation between longtime friends, Harrison and Miller discuss the “survival mode” state of progressive news/talk radio, non-traditional methods of generating broadcasting revenue, the evolution of her successful theatrical (and now online) “Sexy Liberal” offshoot, and her no-holds-barred take on today’s explosive presidential politics. Not to be missed! 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 on every page of Talkers.com.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. At  Entercom’a hip hop WVEE, Atlanta “V-103,” air personalities Tylerchronicles and Christina “Ms. Basketball” Granville join “The Morning Culture with Big Tigger” that airs from 6:00 am to 10:00 am. Entercom Atlanta SVP and market manager Rick Caffey says, “Adding Tylerchronicles and Christina ‘Ms. Basketball’ Granville will not only round out our widely popular morning program, but further establish ‘V-103’ as the people’s station throughout Atlanta. Both possess a unique talent for captivating and entertaining their audiences, and I look forward to introducing them to our listeners as part of their morning routines.”…..Eagle Communications closes on the acquisition of country KZTL-FM, Paxton and rock KRNP, Sutherland – both in Nebraska – from Legacy Communications. KALIL & CO., INC. was the exclusive broker for this transaction.

Wednesday, December 2, 2020

| December 2, 2020

Entercom Names Rick Dayton Afternoon Host at KDKA-AM, Pittsburgh. Almost three months after former afternoon drive talk host Wendy Bell was taken off news/talk KDKA-AM, Pittsburgh’s air for suggesting park rangers shoot people caught defacing public monuments (she was officially fired on October 16), Entercom names local news pro Rick Dayton host of “KDKA Radio Afternoon News hosted by Rick Dayton,” effective December 7. Dayton has worked in television news in North Carolina, at WOWK-TV, Charleston, West Virginia; and at KDKA-TV, Pittburgh. He’s most recently been a fill-in host for the station. Entercom Pittsburgh SVP and market manager Michael Spacciapolli says, “Rick is ingrained in the local community and has a tremendous news reputation in the market. He is a beloved personality who will engage the listeners daily with content and information and I’m excited to welcome him to our weekday lineup.” Dayton adds, “After spending more than a decade back home in western Pennsylvania, I am honored to join KDKA Radio and build on its iconic legacy. To talk with KDKA’s loyal listeners each day and to discuss important issues is something I do not take lightly. I cannot wait to get those conversations started on Monday afternoon.”

WPEN-FM, Philadelphia Fires Morning Host Marc Farzetta. According to a report in the Philadelphia Inquirer, morning drive host Marc Farzetta is out at Beasley Media Group’s sports talk WPEN-FM, Philadelphia “97.5 The Fanatic” after a little more than two years in the daypart. Farzetta let fans know about his departure via Twitter in which he said: “I was informed a few hours ago that today was my last day hosting the Morning Show at 97.5 The Fanatic… I’m so proud of the work we did taking that time slot to heights it hadn’t seen in the station’s 15-year history in the sports format.” Farzetta had been hosting the show with Bob Cooney and producer Jamie Lynch. At this time, it’s not clear if they remain with the station or not.

OPINION: Broadcasting’s Free Speech Responsibility. In the response to the on-air statement by Trump campaign attorney Joe diGenova about former cybersecurity official Chris Krebs, WYD Media Management and Crossover Media Group Sales president Ron Hartenbaum pens a piece for TALKERS explaining his take on the responsibilities of broadcasters who find themselves in such a position. diGenova, while appearing as a guest on “The Howie Carr Show,” said, “Anybody who thinks the election went well, like that idiot Krebs who used to be the head of cybersecurity. That guy is a class A moron. He should be drawn and quartered. Taken out at dawn and shot.” Read Hartenbaum’s response here.

UNCF First Recipient of iHeartMedia’s Media Grant Program. The new iHeartRadio Communities Spotlight Media Grant Program from iHeartMedia is designed to “support organizations that are making a positive impact within the communities iHeart serves and to use iHeart’s multi-platform media network to deliver messaging that is timely, relevant and hyper-targeted to most effectively serve impacted communities.” The company says that the inaugural Spotlight Grants will provide a nationwide platform for Black-focused community organizations to “inspire, educate, and empower listeners to take a stand against systemic racism and promote social justice; celebrate Black excellence, achievement, and culture; help members of the Black community express themselves and address the unique needs of their communities; and invest in educational programs and individuals that are inspiring the next generation of Black journalists and leaders.” Long-time partner UNCF, an organization that helps fund 37 private historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs), has been named the first partner and will receive a minimum media grant of $350,000 to be used through the end of the year. The all-new PSA airs now through the end of the year across all iHeartMedia radio stations and will bring attention to the many social, financial, educational and mental health challenges the COVID-19 pandemic has caused to communities of color and the threat to America’s progress for a more equitable society. UNCF is asking listeners to donate $10 online at UNCF.org/donate to help HBCU students who had to withdraw from school because of COVID-19 challenges get back to college in the spring. Additionally, iHeart will again host UNCF President and CEO Dr. Michael L. Lomax as a guest on the iHeartRadio Communities public affairs show in the coming weeks.

TALKERS News Notes. There’s a new sports channel coming to SiriusXM as the satellite radio company and NBC Sports have partnered to create NBC Sports Audio on SiriusXM that will launch tomorrow (12/3). Sirius XM SVP of sports programming Steve Cohen says, “The NBC Sports Audio channel is a terrific addition to the SiriusXM lineup. Fans of NBC Sports’ great programming and talent will get access to an outstanding sports talk lineup every weekday, and our subscribers will get access to live play-by-play of many top events on the sports calendar.” Shows airing on the channel will include: “PFT Live featuring Mike Florio and Chris Simms,” “The Dan Patrick Show,” “The Rich Eisen Show,” “Brother From Another with Michael Holley and Michael Smith,” and more…..Entercom Chicago is presenting its 25th annual “Good Neighbor Radiothon” on all-news WBBM Newsradio (WBBM-AM/WCFS-FM) to raise money for The Salvation Army. Hosted by WBBM Newsradio news anchor Pat Cassidy, the live program will encourage listeners to donate through the station’s phone bank or online via the station’s website…..Prior to Thanksgiving, Cox Media Group Atlanta’s radio stations – including news/talk WSB-AM/WSBB-FM – partnered with the Atlanta Community Food Bank to collect food and monetary donations to supply holiday meals for local families in need and collected a grand total of 2,127 pounds of dry food, 1,325 pounds of frozen turkey, and monetary donations that will provide 25,816 meals for hungry children, hardworking families and struggling seniors…..Entercom Milwaukee is presenting WSSP-AM  1250AM The Fan’s 14th annual “FAN Toy Drive,” to benefit Children’s Wisconsin. This year’s 24-hour virtual on-air event will aim to raise funds and toys for the hospital’s patients. Listeners will be encouraged to donate via the station’s website…..Cumulus Media’s Westwood One, Imperative Entertainment’s Podcast Division and Pegalo Pictures are premiering the podcast, “American Coyote” that tells the true story of America’s most successful coyote, Elden Kidd. While active, Elden was responsible for ushering over a thousand people across the border — and was unfazed even after cheating death multiple times and spending two years incarcerated in a Mexican prison…..iHeartMedia Stockton’s “Fox Sports AM1280, Stockton’s Only Sports Station,” announces an extension of its broadcast agreement with the University of the Pacific to continue to broadcast the university’s men’s and women’s Pacific Tiger basketball games through the 2020-2021 basketball season.

COVID-19/Vaccines, Trump Tactics/Barr Statement, DOJ Pardon Bribery Investigation, Georgia Runoff Elections, Iran Nuke Scientist Death, and the NFL’s COVID Problem Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (12/1). The fast-rising number of COVID-19 cases in the U.S., the death toll, concerns about private gatherings fueling the pandemic, and the promise of soon-to-be-available vaccines; Donald Trump’s ongoing attempts to call the election results into question and Attorney General William Barr’s public statement that his agency had found no evidence of widespread election fraud; the DOJ’s investigation into a possible bribery scheme involving pay for pardons; the January runoff elections for Georgia’s two U.S. Senate seats; the fallout from the assassination of Iran’s top nuclear weapons scientist; and the NFL’s strategy for dealing with growing COVID-positive players 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. In a move that’s not too surprising to the staffers at the Pohlad family’s Northern Lights Broadcasting, the company’s two radio stations – hip hop KZGO-FM and alternative KQGO-FM in Minneapolis – are being sold to religious broadcaster Educational Media Foundation for an undisclosed sum. The Pohlad family owns MLB’s Minnesota Twins and until 2018 games were broadcast on KQGO. Now, with Twins broadcasts on WCCO-AM, the family has little use for the signals. Both stations will flip to religious formats in the New Year. KALIL & CO., INC. is the exclusive broker for this transaction…..SiriusXM and the family of Bob Marley announce a new, exclusive year-round channel dedicated to the legacy of Bob Marley. Bob Marley’s Tuff Gong Radio launches tomorrow (12/3) and will feature the cultural icon’s entire music catalog, both live and recorded, including rare recordings, some of which have never been made available to the public. The channel is being curated by the Marley family and will include a wide range of Caribbean music from its inception to present day.