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Round One of April PPMs Released. The first of four rounds of ratings information from Nielsen Audio have been released for 12 markets, including: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Dallas, Houston, Atlanta, Philadelphia, Nassau-Suffolk (Long Island), Riverside, San Jose, and Middlesex (New Jersey). You can see all the 6+, weekly AQH share data from subscribing stations here. TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian will present his “Twelve Takeaways” from this first round of ratings information in tomorrow’s edition of TALKERS magazine online.
Post: Francesa Takes First Month of Spring Ratings. The New York Post continues its reporting on the sports talk radio war in the Big Apple, today writing that WFAN afternoon drive personality Mike Francesa beat WEPN PM driver Michael Kay in the Men 25-54 demographic with a 7.0 share to Kay’s 6.1 share, according to Nielsen Audio’s April PPM survey. If you recall, there’s been disagreement between the two stations over whether WFAN should include its stream audience since it sells streaming ads separately. WEPN – which airs the same ads on air and online – made noise about Michael Kay’s strong performance in the Winter book (Jan., Feb., and March PPM surveys) and arguments ensued about whether he could really claim victory.
Neal Bird Joins Sun & Fun and Key Networks. Affiliate sales pro Neal Bird is named senior account executive for Sun & Fun Media and Key Networks. Bird spent the last 11 years with Westwood One, the last five years as VP of affiliate sales for music & entertainment and backstage events. Bird’s joining the companies comes just a few weeks after Key Networks’ April 29 launch of the new, 15-minute daily radio program, “The O’Reilly Update,” starring Bill O’Reilly. Sun & Fun and Key Networks chief revenue officer Dennis Green comments, “I’ve had the pleasure of working with Neal and am delighted to welcome him to the Sun & Fun Media team and Key Networks. Neal has strong relationships throughout the radio industry and is known as someone who gets the job done and delivers for his clients. He will be an integral part of growing our core business while helping chart a course in building our new syndication division at Key Networks.” Bird adds, “It’s an exciting time at Sun & Fun Media as its core business is as strong as ever and now, with the launch of Key Networks and ‘The O’Reilly Update,’ the future is even brighter. With that, I’m thrilled to be joining the great team that Rob, Roger, and Dennis have assembled and I look forward to working with our valued partners and in growing the business.”
Radio One Returns WDBZ, Cincinnati to Urban News/Talk. The Cincinnati Enquirer is reporting on the move by Radio One to reverse the 2016 decision to flip urban news/talk WDBZ-AM/W268CM, Cincinnati to rhythmic oldies as “Soul 101.5.” The station returned to its previous “The Buzz” brand with a new program lineup. Remaining with the station is late morning talk host Lincoln Ware (his was the only talk show to survive the previous format change and remain on air in the 10:00 am to 12:00 noon slot). Emanuel Livingston hosts 12:00 noon to 3:00 pm, and former Cincinnati Mayor Dwight Tillery begins hosting the 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm show, effective June 3. The Tom Joyner Show remains in AM drive and the station carries “Keepin’ It Real” with Al Sharpton. Radio One Cincinnati vice president and general manager Mitch Galvin tells the paper, “With the climate of Cincinnati and the United States right now, there is more of a need for talk and the voice of the inner city to have an outlet, and that’s what we wanted to accomplish by bringing it back.” Lincoln Ware is quoted saying, “This 2020 election is going to be like none you’ve seen before. There are too many right-wing stations out there and we’ve got to balance it out. ‘The Buzz’ will add a little weight toward that balance.”
Full Power Radio Launches ‘Trump 103.3 WDRC’ to Promote FM Translator and New Program Lineup. The trio of Connecticut talk stations – WDRC-AM, Hartford; WMMW-AM, Meriden; and WSNG-AM, Torrington – gets an FM partner as Full Power Radio fires up translator W277DT at 103.3 FM and temporarily re-brands as “Trump 103.3 WDRC.” A press release from Full Power says the station is airing promos that call for the firing of Governor Ned Lamont and demand “No New Tolls or Taxes for Connecticut.” Owner John Fuller says, “There is a real hunger for the truth and ‘Trump 103.3’ will report and uncover statewide waste and corruption that conventional media are afraid to touch.” The program lineup includes: “Brad Davis and Friends” in morning drive, Salem Radio Network’s Mike Gallagher in late mornings, and local host Lee Elci shares the noon hour with Bill O’Reilly’s “The O’Reilly Update.” Afternoons include Radio America’s Dana Loesch and Westwood One’s Michael Savage and Ben Shapiro. Wayne Allyn Root is heard in the evening daypart. After a period, the station will return to its “The Talk of Connecticut” brand.
Progressive Talk Radio Returns to Madison on FM. Madison-area signal WTTN-AM, Columbus added an FM translator at 92.7 on Saturday (5/11) that brings progressive talk back to Madison on the FM band. The last time the format aired in the market on FM was on iHeartMedia’s WXXM “The Mic 92.1.” But iHeartMedia flipped that station to classic hits in 2016. Mike Crute’s “Resistance Radio” format is airing on the signals, as well as on the signal he purchased from Good Karma in 2017, WRRD-AM, Waukesha, Wisconsin in the Milwaukee market. Crute co-hosts the daily “The Devil’s Advocates” program that airs in afternoon drive. The stations also air WYD Media’s “Thom Hartmann Program” and “Stephanie Miller Show” as well as local personalities Earle Ingram Jr., and Bryan Kelly.
Good Karma Re-Aligns Sports Programming on Milwaukee Stations. A couple of new, local shows will begin airing on Good Karma Brands’ Milwaukee sports talk stations and that will have an effect on sister news/talk outlet WTMJ. Good Karma operates WKTI-FM and WAUK-AM as “ESPN Milwaukee.” Beginning June 4, WAUK-AM will carry the entire ESPN Radio lineup except for the 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm daypart in which Doug Russell will host “ESPN Milwaukee Podcenter.” As for WKTI-FM, the station will debut “Gabe & Chewy,” airing from 7:00 am to 9:00 am and co-hosted by Gabe Netzel and former Green Bay Packers tight end Mark Chmura. Also, former Marquette University basketball star Tony Smith partners with Bryan Dee for the 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm program. Greg Matzek moves over from WTMJ to host a daily noon hour program and Doug Russell hosts a nightly 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm program. Good Karma Brands vice president and market manager Steve Wexler says moving some of the sports talk from WTMJ will allow for new, non-sports programming in evenings when there are no Milwaukee Brewers or Milwaukee Bucks games on WTMJ. He says, “We will be adding local talk content to WTMJ in the evening that will feature new voices and perspectives. We’re on the lookout for additional local, compelling, and entertaining personalities to add to WTMJ.”
U.S.-China Trade War, Mueller Testimony, ‘Heartbeat’ Abortion Laws, 2020 Presidential Politics, U.S.-Iran Tensions, Immigration Policy, and NBA/NHL Playoffs Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (5/13). The financial markets’ reactions to the U.S.-China tariff war; the possibility that special counsel Robert Mueller testifies before congress; the passing of “heartbeat” laws restricting abortion in several states and a possible challenge to Roe v Wade; the Democrats vying to challenge President Trump in 2020; the saber-rattling between the U.S. and Iran; U.S. policy regarding migration at the Southern border; and NBA and NHL playoff action were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.
TALKERS News Notes. Best-selling author, keynote speaker, and entrepreneur Heather Monahan joins PodcastOne with her debut podcast, “Creating Confidence.” In this series, Monahan shares the techniques and strategies to create your confidence, pursue your dreams and leapfrog the villains that get in the way. The debut episode features top-ranked podcaster, Gary Vaynerchuk…..iHeartRadio announces that its podcast “Stuff You Missed in History Class” posted its first branded episode in partnership with Warner Bros Pictures. The episode delves into the historical perspective of the Godzilla legend, exploring how this iconic story came about during WWII and subsequently gained mainstream attention…..WPGG, Atlantic City morning host Harry Hurley is filling in for nationally syndicated talk radio host Tom Shillue on FOX News Radio’s 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm ET program today (5/14).
Music Radio News and Career Moves. The new on-air lineup at Entercom’s Atlanta CHR WSTR “Star 94.1” is officially revealed after last week’s changes that saw Jeff Dauler, Mike Marino, and Heather Branch exit the station. The station adds personalities Mark Owens and Curtis Slade as co-hosts of the morning drive “Jenn & Friends” show with host Jenn Hobby. In addition to contributing to the morning show, Amanda Kelly is promoted to midday host. Finally, Kannon takes over the afternoon drive program. Mark Owens served for the last six years as a producer at sister sports talker WZGC-FM “92.9 The Game.” Curtis Slade began his career as an interior design consultant and then went on to host a weekly segment on WWXM-FM, Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Jeannine Riley is producing the morning show…..Cumulus Media promotes three at its Worcester, Massachusetts cluster. Classic hits WWFX “100 FM The Pike” program director Chuck Perk adds operations manager duties for classic country WORC-FM “98.9 FM NASH Icon.” Keith Stephens is named program director for WORC-FM, and Matt Henry is upped to promotions director for AC WXLO, WWFX and WORC-FM…..Programming pro Tom Ferguson is appointed program director for Times-Shamrock Communications-owned alternative WFUZ, Wilkes Barre-Scranton “ALT 92.1.” Ferguson programmed WFUZ from 2013 through 2017 and had most recently been hosting afternoon drive at Entercom’s crosstown classic hits WMQX “Max 102.3.”…..Jodi Vale exits Connoisseur Media’s adult contemporary WKJY, Hempstead, New York “K98.3” in order to finish her master’s degree in communications.