PPM Analysis: All-News. TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian presents a look at the performances of stations based on data from Nielsen Audio’s December 2019 PPM survey with a focus on all-news stations. As the calendar inches closer to the holidays each year, listening to spoken-word radio usually dips to some extent and the end of 2019 was no different. Fifty-three percent of all-news stations saw their 6+ weekly AQH share decline from the November survey to December, with 33% going up and 13% staying flat. More concerning for all-news operators was the year-over-year decrease. Seventy-three percent of all-news stations were down from December 2018 to December 2019 with just 27% improving. The lone big gainer there was Entercom’s KCBS-AM, San Francisco in which it put together a 2.1 share increase. KCBS-AM was also the only all-news station to rank #1 in its market in December. WBBM-AM/WCFS-FM, Chicago ranked #3, as did Hubbard Radio’s WTOP-FM, Washington. See Mike Kinosian’s entire report here.
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 on the website of its flagship station, iHeartMedia’s WONK-FM, Washington, DC (1/3). The new episode titled, “Roaring Not Boring Twenties!” looks back at this past week of December 30, 2019 – January 3, 2020 and features guests (in order of appearance): Kevin Casey, executive editor, TALKERS; Curtis Sliwa, talk show host, WABC, New York; Gary Sutton, talk show host, WSBA, York, PA; J.D. Hayworth, radio-TV talk host / former US Representative (R-AZ); Christopher Ruddy, CEO, Newsmax / Newsmax TV; Graham Mack, talk show host / program director, FIX Radio, London, UK; and Don Imus (1940 -2019), legendary talk show host. This acclaimed news/talk radio show airs each week on WONK-FM, Washington, DC on Friday evenings between 6:00-7:00 pm. It also airs throughout the weekend on WRKO, Boston; KSCO, Santa Cruz, CA; KFNX, Phoenix; WVOX, Westchester, NY; KBDT, Dallas; KQSP, Minneapolis; KBKW, Aberdeen, WA; the Virginia Talk Radio Network and Pioneer Valley Radio in Springfield, MA as well as appearing on the iHeartRadio App. 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.
Entercom Announces New CBS Sports Radio Lineup; ‘The DA Show’ to Mornings. The CBS Sports Radio network has a new lineup for 2020, Entercom announces. Entercom SVP of programming Jeff Sottolano says, “Our new CBS Sports Radio lineup will provide enhanced programming for fans and further cement our place as a leader in national sports coverage. Damon Amendolara – “DA” – has continued to demonstrate that he is a rising star in the format and will excel with his move to mornings. We are thrilled to add the Westwood One-produced Pat McAfee program to the network lineup and happy to introduce our audience to Zach Gelb at night.” Westwood One remains the exclusive sales and distribution partner for the network. The daily lineup is as follows: “The DA Show” in AM drive; “The Pat McAfee Show” from 10:00 am to 12:00 noon; “The Jim Rome Show” from 12:00 noon to 3:00 pm; “Tiki and Tierney” from 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm; Zach Gelb from 6:00 pm to 10:00 pm: “Ferrall on the Bench” from 10:00 pm to 2:00 am; and Amy Lawrence from 2:00 am to 6:00 am.
Mary Dixon Appointed WBEZ-FM, Chicago Morning Anchor. Former triple A WXRT-FM, Chicago morning drive co-host Mary Dixon – recently let go by the Entercom station as part of a number of air talent moves – is signing on with public outlet WBEZ-FM as morning news anchor and local “Morning Edition” host. The Chicago Tribune says Dixon begins training next week and takes to the air in February. She takes over for Lisa Labuz who is moving to the midday anchor position. Dixon had co-hosted the morning show on WXRT with Lin Brehmer for the past 20-plus years. Brehmer moves to the midday show on WXRT.
TALKERS News Notes. New York sports talk personality Bart Scott will not begin his radio show with Alan Hahn on ESPN’s WEPN “ESPN New York” until January 20. According to Andrew Marchand in the New York Post, Entercom threatened legal action to keep Scott from starting on time – he was expected to start yesterday (1/2). But an ESPN spokesperson says WEPN GM Tim McCarthy wanted to give Scott some time off since he finished his stint with WFAN by working right up until Christmas…..iHeartMedia Erie launches a new station airing podcasts available on the iHeartRadio platform. The station WLTM-FM (just across the state line in Mina, New York) is branded “iHeartPodcast 95.9 FM” and showcases “today’s most popular podcasts,” allowing listeners to discover them through the radio. iHeartMedia Erie SVP of programming Joe Lang says, “We’re thrilled to welcome the iHeartPodcast Channel to the Erie community. Now our local listeners have even more access to a variety of their favorite iHeart podcasts, while helping them discover new podcast content all through the power of radio. From true crime to history, comedy to food, this station will offer a wide variety of topics every week.”…..iHeartMedia North Dakota launches the new “Dakota Farm and Ranch Report” – a three to four-minute report that airs five times on weekday mornings on news/talk KFYR and country KBMR in Bismarck, North Dakota; country KLTC-AM, Dickinson, North Dakota; and country KCJB-AM in Minot, North Dakota. North Dakota rancher and broadcaster Scott Bachmeier joins iHeartMedia Bismarck as farm and ranch director and host of the “Dakota Farm and Ranch Report.” iHeartMedia North Dakota market president Charlie Thomas says, “We realize farming and ranching in the Dakotas is unique and we wanted to offer a custom informational show that would focus on international, national, and state agricultural issues, but also dedicate a fair amount of time to the issues that affect farms and ranches a little closer to home.”…..Newsday’s Neil Best reports that John Sterling and Suzyn Waldman will return to call New York Yankees games on Entercom-owned radio flagship WFAN, New York for the 2020 season. This will be the duo’s 16th season behind the mics together…..Condolences to the family and friends of former Montgomery, Alabama talk host Mark Montiel, who passed away recently. Montiel, also a practicing attorney in the area, worked at Cumulus Media from 2011 through 2017, hosting his own program on news/talk WLWI-AM. Cumulus Montgomery operations manager Rick Hendrick tells the Alabama News Network, “Working with Mark Montiel was awesome. He was very outspoken. He’s like me, just very outspoken and very opinionated which makes good radio for us here at Cumulus. It was awesome to work with him.”
U.S. Embassy in Iraq Protests and Middle East Tensions Among Top News/Talk Stories This Week. The violent protests at the U.S. embassy in Iraq and the subsequent killing of Iranian General Qasem Soleimani in a U.S. air strike was the most-talked-about story on news/talk radio this week, landing atop the Talkers TenTM. At #2 on this week’s chart is the impeachment of President Donald Trump. Close behind at #3 is the 2020 presidential race, followed by the New York City Hanukkah attack and the related rise of anti-Semitism and race relations 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. In Pennsylvania’s Lancaster-York-Harrisburg market, programming and on-air pro Ronnie Ramone is upped to program director for Hall Communications’ hot AC WROZ “Fun 101.3.” He’ll continue hosting the evening show on the station. Cluster VP/general manager Billy Baldwin says, “Ronnie has been instrumental in building the ‘Fun 101.3’ brand in Central Pennsylvania. He has been our go-to guy on so many things for so long and we are excited to give him this opportunity.”…..At iHeartMedia’s Wichita cluster, senior vice president of programming Jim Dorman takes over the program director role for adult contemporary KRBB “B98.” He also is PD for country KZSN. Additionally, alternative KTHR, Wichita program director Manny Cowzinski adds PD duties for sister CHR KZCH “Channel 96-3.” Dorman says, “Manny has shown he has the passion and skills to not only program alternative ‘ALT 107-3,’ but also program ‘Channel 96-3.’