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December 2021 PPM Ratings Takeaways – Part Three

| January 3, 2022

December 2021 PPM Data – Information for the December 2021 ratings period has been released for Portland; Charlotte; San Antonio; Sacramento; Pittsburgh; Salt Lake City; Las Vegas; Orlando; Cincinnati; Cleveland; Kansas City; and Columbus.

Nielsen Audio’s December 2021 sweep covered November 11 – December 8.

Managing editor Mike Kinosian provides “Takeaways” for spoken-word stations finishing in their respective markets’ top twenty.

Cited as well are each particular city’s #1 station (6+) and loftiest (6+) upticks and drop-offs.

All comparisons noted are November 2021 – December 2021 (6+).

 

PORTLAND

News/Talk: Alpha Media’s KXL “FM 101 News” flat at 7.1, second to fourth

iHeartMedia-owned KEX “News Radio 1190” 3.1 – 2.5, -.6, unchanged at #16

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: None in the top twenty

Public Radio News/Talk: Oregon Public Broadcasting’s KOPB 6.9 – 7.2, +.3, fourth to third and KOPB’s internet stream steady at 2.2, #19 to #17

Number One 6+: iHeartMedia adult contemporary KKCW, first month, 7.1 – 12.4, +5.3

Largest 6+ November 2021 – December 2021 Increase: adult contemporary KKCW (+5.3)

Largest 6+ November 2021 – December 2021 Decrease: hot AC KRSK (-.8)

CHARLOTTE

News/Talk: Radio One-owned WBT AM & WBT-FM “Charlotte’s News Talk” (Carolina Panthers) 4.5 – 3.8, -.7, #8 to #11

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Audacy’s WFNZ “Sports Radio The Fan” (Hornets) 1.0 – 1.1, +.1, remains at #18

Public Radio News/Talk: University Radio Foundation-owned WFAE 4.1 – 4.3, +.2, tenth to ninth

South Carolina Educational Television Commission’s WNSC steady at .5, locked at #20

Number One 6+: Beasley Media Group adult contemporary WKQC, first month, 5.0 – 8.8, +3.8

Largest 6+ November 2021 – December 2021 Increase: adult contemporary WKQC (+3.8)

Largest 6+ November 2021 – December 2021 Decrease: classical WDAV (-.8)

SAN ANTONIO

News/Talk: iHeartMedia’s WOAI “News Radio 1200” (Spurs) 4.3 – 4.2, -.1, tenth to eighth

Alpha Media-owned KTSA “Stay Connected” 2.1 – 2.2, +.1, #16 to #14

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: None in the top twenty

Public Radio News/Talk: Texas Public Radio’s KSTX 3.3 – 3.1, -.2, #13 to #12

Number One 6+: iHeartMedia adult contemporary KQXT, first month, 5.9 – 10.8, +4.9

Largest 6+ November 2021 – December 2021 Increase: adult contemporary KQXT (+4.9)

Largest 6+ November 2021 – December 2021 Decrease: classic hits-oldies KONO-FM (-1.8)

SACRAMENTO

News/Talk: iHeartMedia-owned KFBK-AM & KFBK-FM “News 1530 AM & 93.1 FM” 9.1 – 7.3, -1.8, first to third and cluster-mate KSTE “Talk 650” 2.7 – 2.9, +.2, #14 to #12

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Audacy’s KIFM-AM “ESPN 1320” 1.0 – .9, -.1, #18 to #19

Public Radio News/Talk: Capital Public Radio’s KXJZ 4.9 – 4.5, -.4, seventh to eighth

Number One 6+: Audacy classic rock KSEG, first month, 8.3 – 10.2, +1.9

Largest 6+ November 2021 – December 2021 Increase: adult contemporary KYMX (+3.1)

Largest 6+ November 2021 – December 2021 Decrease: adult contemporary KBEB (-2.2)*

*Represents the largest November 2021 – December 2021 decrease (6+) of any station from these 12 PPM-markets

PITTSBURGH

News/Talk: Audacy’s KDKA-AM “News Radio 1020 AM” 4.1 – 3.7, -.4, remains in ninth-place

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Audacy-owned KDKA-FM “93.7 The Fan All Sports All The Time” 8.7 – 7.8, -.9, stays at #4

Public Radio News/Talk: Pittsburgh Community Broadcasting’s WESA 3.3 – 2.7, -.6, #11 to #13

Number One 6+: iHeartMedia classic hits-oldies WWSW, first month, 8.9 – 11.1, +2.2

Largest 6+ November 2021 – December 2021 Increase:  adult contemporary WSHH (+2.5)

Largest 6+ November 2021 – December 2021 Decrease: sports talk KDKA-FM (-.9)

SALT LAKE CITY

News/Talk: iHeartMedia’s KNRS-AM & KNRS-FM “Talk Radio” 7.2 – 7.1, -.1, anchored in second-place

Bonneville-owned KSL “News Radio 102.7 FM & 1160 AM” 7.5 – 6.0, -1.5, first to fifth

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: None in the top twenty

Public Radio News/Talk: University of Utah’s KUER steady at 4.1, repeats at #8

Number One 6+: Bonneville adult contemporary KSFI, first month, 5.5 – 10.9, +5.4

Largest 6+ November 2021 – December 2021 Increase: adult contemporary KSFI (+5.4)

Largest 6+ November 2021 – December 2021 Decrease: news/talk KSL (-1.5)

LAS VEGAS

News/Talk: Audacy’s KXNT “News Talk 840” 1.9 – 1.8, -.1, #21 to #16

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: None in the top twenty

Public Radio News/Talk: None in the top twenty

Number One 6+: iHeartMedia adult contemporary KSNE, first month, 6.0 – 13.1, +7.1

Largest 6+ November 2021 – December 2021 Increase: adult contemporary KSNE (+7.1)**

Largest 6+ November 2021 – December 2021 Decrease: contemporary Christian KSOS (-2.1)

**Represents the largest November 2021 – December 2021 increase (6+) of any station from these 12 PPM-markets

ORLANDO

News/Talk: iHeartMedia’s WTKS “Real Radio 104.1” 5.6 – 5.3, -.3, seventh to eighth

Cox Media Group-owned WDBO “Orlando’s News Talk” 2.1 – 1.9, -.2, flat at #16

iHeartMedia’s WFLF “Orlando News Radio” 1.8 – 1.3, -.5, #18 to #19

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: iHeartMedia-owned WYGM “96.9 The Game” (Magic) 2.3 – 2.2, -.1, #15 to #14

Public Radio News/Talk: Community Connections’ WMFE 2.5 – 1.7, -.8, #13 to #17

Number One 6+: iHeartMedia adult contemporary WMGF, first month, 6.1 – 12.0, +5.9

Largest 6+ November 2021 – December 2021 Increase: adult contemporary WMGF (+5.9)

Largest 6+ November 2021 – December 2021 Decrease: rock WJRR (-1.5)

CINCINNATI

News/Talk: iHeartMedia-owned WLW “700 Cincinnati’s News Radio” 11.8 – 10.2, -1.6, flat at #2 and cluster-mate WKRC “55 KRC The Talk Station” 5.8 – 5.2, -.6, fourth to sixth

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: iHeartMedia’s WCKY “ESPN 1530” (Bengals) locked at 1.4, repeats at #17

Public Radio News/Talk: Cincinnati Public Radio-owned WVXU steady at 3.9, tenth to eighth

Number One 6+: Cumulus Media classic hits-oldies WGRR second month in a row, 12.3 – 11.0, -1.3

Largest 6+ November 2021 – December 2021 Increase: adult contemporary WRRM (+1.8)

Largest 6+ November 2021 – December 2021 Decrease: news/talk WLW (-1.6)

CLEVELAND

News/Talk: iHeartMedia’s WTAM “News Radio 1100” (Cavaliers) 4.7 – 4.0, -.7, stays in ninth-place

News: iHeartMedia-owned WMMS-HD2 “BIN 99.1 Because Truth Matters” unchanged at .2, #18 to #20

Sports Talk: Audacy’s WKRK “Sports Radio 92.3 The Fan” (Browns) 5.5 – 4.6, -.9, seventh to eighth and WKRK’s internet steam debuts with a 1.5, #14

Public Radio News/Talk: Ideastream-owned WCPN steady at 2.6, #13 to #12

Kent State University’s WKSU 1.3 – 1.1, -.2, #15 to #17

Number One 6+: Audacy adult contemporary WDOK first month, 9.8 – 10.4, +.6

Largest 6+ November 2021 – December 2021 Increase:  iHeartMedia classic hits-oldies WMJI (+1.4)

Largest 6+ November 2021 – December 2021 Decrease: sports talk WKRK (-.9)

KANSAS CITY

News/Talk: Audacy’s KMBZ-FM “98.1 FM News, Traffic, Weather” 5.0 – 4.6, -.4, seventh to sixth

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Audacy’s KCSP “Sports Radio 610 Our Teams, Our Town” 2.1 – 2.3, +.2, remains at #16

Public Radio News/Talk: University of Missouri-owned KCUR 6.6 – 6.1, -.5, continues in third-place

Number One 6+: Cumulus Media classic rock KCFX, third consecutive month, 8.9 – 9.7, +.8

Largest 6+ November 2021 – December 2021 Increase: adult contemporary KCKC (+3.4)

Largest 6+ November 2021 – December 2021 Decrease: country WDAF (-1.6)

COLUMBUS

News/Talk: iHeartMedia-owned WTVN “News Radio 610” 6.7 – 6.5, -.2, remains in fourth-place

News: iHeartMedia’s WYTS “Columbus’ BIN 1230” .2 – .1, -.1, locked at #19

Sports Talk: Tegna-owned WBNS-FM “97.1 FM The Fan” (Blue Jackets) 9.6 – 10.3, +.7, #1 and cluster-mate WBNS-AM “ESPN 1460 AM” .6 – .5, -.1, #16 to #18

Public Radio News/Talk: Ohio State University’s WOSU 6.2 – 6.5, +.3, sixth to fourth

Number One 6+: sports talk WBNS-FM, fourth successive month, 9.6 – 10.3, +.7

Largest 6+ November 2021 – December 2021 Increase: adult hits WODC (+2.1)

Largest 6+ November 2021 – December 2021 Decrease: classic rock WLVQ (-1.2)

 

Up next: December 2021 overviews for Austin; Raleigh; Indianapolis; Milwaukee; Nashville; Providence; Norfolk; Jacksonville; West Palm Beach; Greensboro; Memphis; and Hartford.

 

Email Mike Kinosian at Mike.Kinosian@gmail.com.  

September 2021 PPM Ratings Takeaways – Part Three

| October 7, 2021

September 2021 PPM Data – Information for the September 2021 ratings period has been released for Portland; Charlotte; San Antonio; Sacramento; Pittsburgh; Salt Lake City; Las Vegas; Orlando; Cincinnati; Cleveland; Kansas City; and Columbus.

Nielsen Audio’s September 2021 sweep covered August 19 – September 15.

Managing editor Mike Kinosian provides “Takeaways” for spoken-word stations finishing in their respective markets’ top twenty.

Also cited are each particular city’s #1 station (6+) and loftiest (6+) upticks and drop-offs.

All comparisons noted are August 2021 – September 2021 (6+).

PORTLAND

News/Talk: Alpha Media’s KXL “FM 101 News” 5.2 – 5.8, +.6, anchored at #4

iHeartMedia-owned KEX “News Radio 1190” 2.5 – 3.2, +.7, #18 to #15

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Audacy’s KFXX “1080 The Fan” 1.4 – 1.6, +.2, #22 to #20

Public Radio News/Talk: Oregon Public Broadcasting’s KOPB flat at 8.1, #1 and KOPB’s internet stream 1.0 – 1.7, +.7, #23 to #19

Number One 6+: public radio news/talk KOPB, ninth month in a row, unchanged at 8.1

Largest 6+ August 2021 – September 2021 Increase: classic rock KFBW (+1.0)

Largest 6+ August 2021 – September 2021 Decrease: CHR KKRZ (-.9)

CHARLOTTE

News/Talk: Radio One-owned WBT AM & WBT-FM “Charlotte’s News Talk” (Carolina Panthers) 4.0 – 4.7, +.7, tenth to eighth

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Audacy’s WFNZ “Sports Radio The Fan”.8 – .9, +.1, stays at #18

Public Radio News/Talk: University Radio Foundation-owned WFAE 3.6 – 3.4, -.2, #11 to #13

South Carolina Educational Television Commission’s WNSC flat at .5, continues at #20

Number One 6+: iHeartMedia classic rock WRFX, first month, 6.0 – 6.7, +.7

Largest 6+ August 2021 – September 2021 Increase: alternative WEND (+.8)

Largest 6+ August 2021 – September 2021 Decrease: urban contemporary WPEG (-.8)

SAN ANTONIO

News/Talk: iHeartMedia’s WOAI “News Radio 1200” 5.2 – 5.0, -.2, fifth to seventh

Alpha Media-owned KTSA “Stay Connected” 1.5 – 2.1, +.6, #19 to #17

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: None in the top twenty

Public Radio News/Talk: Texas Public Radio’s KSTX 3.7 – 3.6, -.1, repeats at #11

Number One 6+: Cox Media Group hot AC KSMG, second month in a row, 7.7 – 7.0, -.7

Largest 6+ August 2021 – September 2021 Increase: regional Mexican KROM (+1.3)

Largest 6+ August 2021 – September 2021 Decrease: classic hits-oldies KONO-FM (-1.0)

SACRAMENTO

News/Talk: iHeartMedia-owned KFBK-AM & KFBK-FM “News 1530 AM & 93.1 FM” 8.7 – 9.8, +1.1, #1 and cluster-mate KSTE “Talk 650” 3.6 – 3.4, -.2, #10 to #12

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: None in the top twenty

Public Radio News/Talk: Capital Public Radio’s KXJZ 5.4 – 6.1, +.7, seventh to fourth

Number One 6+: news/talk KFBK AM & KFBK-FM, third straight month, 8.7 – 9.8, +1.1

Largest 6+ August 2021 – September 2021 Increase: news/talk KFBK AM & KFBK-FM (+1.1)

Largest 6+ August 2021 – September 2021 Decrease: country KNCI (-1.8)

PITTSBURGH

News/Talk: Audacy’s KDKA-AM “News Radio 1020 AM” 5.4 – 4.7, -.7, fifth to sixth

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Audacy-owned KDKA-FM “93.7 The Fan All Sports All The Time” (Pirates) 8.2 – 8.8, +.6, third to second

Public Radio News/Talk: Pittsburgh Community Broadcasting’s WESA 3.1 – 3.8, +.7, repeats at #11

Number One 6+: iHeartMedia rock WDVE, fourth consecutive month, 9.6 – 10.4, +.8

Largest 6+ August 2021 – September 2021 Increase:  adult hits WRRK (+1.6)

Largest 6+ August 2021 – September 2021 Decrease: news/talk KDKA-AM (-.7)

SALT LAKE CITY

News/Talk: Bonneville-owned KSL “News Radio” 6.8 – 8.2, +1.4, third to first

iHeartMedia’s KNRS-AM & KNRS-FM “Talk Radio” 5.0 – 6.3, +1.3, seventh to fourth

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: None in the top twenty

Public Radio News/Talk: University of Utah’s KUER 5.0 – 4.7, -.3, repeats at #7

Number One 6+: news/talk KSL, first month, 6.8 – 8.2, +1.4

Largest 6+ August 2021 – September 2021 Increase: news/talk KSL (+1.4)

Largest 6+ August 2021 – September 2021 Decrease: classic hits-oldies KRSP (-1.9)

LAS VEGAS

News/Talk: Audacy’s KXNT “News Talk 840” 1.8 – 1.9, +.1, #20 to #19

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: None in the top twenty

Number One 6+: iHeartMedia adult contemporary KSNE, first month, 6.0 – 7.5, +1.5

Largest 6+ August 2021 – September 2021 Increase (Tie): adult contemporary KSNE and country KWNR (+1.5)

Largest 6+ August 2021 – September 2021 Decrease: rock KOMP (-.9)

ORLANDO

News/Talk: iHeartMedia’s WTKS “Real Radio 104.1” 5.9 – 6.1, +.2, locked at #7

Cox Media Group-owned WDBO “Orlando’s News Talk” 2.2 – 2.5, +.3, #16 to #15

iHeartMedia’s WFLF “Orlando News Radio” 1.9 – 1.5, -.4, #17 to #19

Spanish News/Talk: Star Over Orlando’s WRSO “Acción 97.9” 1.4 – .9, -.5, repeats at #20

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: iHeartMedia-owned WYGM “96.9 The Game” flat at 1.7, #19 to #17

Public Radio News/Talk: Community Connections’ WMFE 3.2 – 2.7, -.5, #11 to #13

Number One 6+ (Tie): Audacy classic hits-oldies WOCL, ninth successive month, 7.5 – 7.6, +.1 and iHeartMedia CHR WXXL, first month, 6.9 – 7.6, +.7

Largest 6+ August 2021 – September 2021 Increase: rock WJRR (+.8)

Largest 6+ August 2021 – September 2021 Decrease: Spanish contemporary WOEX (-.9)

CINCINNATI

News/Talk: iHeartMedia-owned WLW “700 Cincinnati’s News Radio” (Reds) 14.1 – 14.5, +.4, #1 and cluster-mate WKRC “55 KRC The Talk Station” 4.7 – 4.5, -.2, fifth to seventh

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: iHeartMedia’s WCKY “ESPN 1530” (Bengals) .8 – 1.3, +.5, #19 to #18

Public Radio News/Talk: Cincinnati Public Radio-owned WVXU 4.1 – 3.8, -.3, #9 to #11

Number One 6+: news/talk WLW sixth successive month, 14.1 – 14.5, +.4

Largest 6+ August 2021 – September 2021 Increase: rock WEBN (+1.0)

Largest 6+ August 2021 – September 2021 Decrease: classic hits-oldies WGRR (-1.5)

CLEVELAND

News/Talk: iHeartMedia’s WTAM “News Radio 1100” (Indians) 6.4 – 6.6, +.2, seventh to eighth

News: iHeartMedia-owned WMMS-HD2 “BIN 99.1 Because Truth Matters” .2 – .1, -.1, flat at #19

Sports Talk: Audacy’s WKRK “Sports Radio 92.3 The Fan” (Browns) 3.3 – 3.4, +.1, repeats at #10

Public Radio News/Talk: Ideastream-owned WCPN 2.8 – 3.0, +.2, steady at #13

Kent State University’s WKSU .9 – .7, -.2, #16 to #17

Number One 6+: Audacy classic rock WNCX third successive month, 10.2 – 9.6, -.6

Largest 6+ August 2021 – September 2021 Increase: hot AC WQAL (+.9)

Largest 6+ August 2021 – September 2021 Decrease (Tie): classic rock WNCX; classic hits-oldies WMJI; and adult contemporary WDOK (-.6)

KANSAS CITY

News/Talk: Audacy’s KMBZ-FM “98.1 FM News, Traffic, Weather” 5.2 – 4.5, -.7, fourth to fifth and cluster-mate KMBZ-AM “Talk 980 AM” 1.0 – .9, -.1, flat at #20

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Audacy-owned KCSP “Sports Radio 610 Our Teams, Our Town” (Royals) steady at 2.8, #16 to #15

Public Radio News/Talk: University of Missouri’s KCUR 5.3 – 5.7, +.4, carries on in third-place

Number One 6+: Cumulus Media classic hits-oldies KCMO-FM, third successive month, 9.4 – 10.1, +.7

Largest 6+ August 2021 – September 2021 Increase: country WDAF (+1.0)

Largest 6+ August 2021 – September 2021 Decrease: country KFKF (-.9)

COLUMBUS

News/Talk: iHeartMedia-owned WTVN “News Radio 610” 6.7 – 6.9, +.2, repeats in fourth-place

News: iHeartMedia’s WYTS “Columbus’ BIN 1230” .1, #20 (WYTS appears in print for the first time since April 2021)

Sports Talk: Tegna-owned WBNS-FM “97.1 FM The Fan” 5.6 – 8.1, +2.5, sixth to first and cluster-mate WBNS-AM “ESPN 1460 AM” .6 – .5, -.1, flat at #16

Public Radio News/Talk: Ohio State University’s WOSU 8.1 – 7.9, -.2, first to second

Number One 6+: sports talk WBNS-FM, first month, 5.6 – 8.1, +2.5

Largest 6+ August 2021 – September 2021 Increase: sports talk WBNS-FM (+2.5)

Largest 6+ August 2021 – September 2021 Decrease: classical WOSA (-1.2)

 

 

Up next: September 2021 overviews for Austin; Raleigh; Indianapolis; Milwaukee; Nashville; Providence; Norfolk; Jacksonville; West Palm Beach; Greensboro; Memphis; and Hartford.

 

Email Mike Kinosian at Mike.Kinosian@gmail.com.  

Thursday, July 29, 2021

| July 29, 2021

Audacy Chicago Assigns VP Stripes To Solk. Four-year Audacy Chicago triple A WXRT “93 XRT” operations manager/program director Greg Solk is elevated to vice president of programming & operations for the company’s Windy City cluster. The promotion takes effect this Sunday (8/1) and will give Solk programming/operations strategy oversight for all-news WBBM-AM & WCFS “News Radio 780 AM & 105.9 FM” and sports talk WSCR “670 The Score,” as well as CHR WBBM-FM “B-96”; country WUSN “US-99”; urban-rhythmic oldies WBMX “104.3 Jams”; and WXRT. Audacy Chicago regional president/market manager Rachel Williamson remarks, “Greg has been an invaluable partner who is respected and appreciated by his team at WXRT; across Audacy; and throughout the industry. He has been influential in the success of many of the biggest brands in Chicago. I could not be more excited to promote him into this enhanced role overseeing our Chicago programming strategy.” Solk states, “These past years at WXRT have been among the most rewarding of my career – especially the opportunity to work alongside legendary talents. Along with so many others behind the scenes, this team returned WXRT to the top echelon of our great city’s broadcast properties. I now look forward to continuing to work with Rachel and our group’s superb brand/programming leaders. Together we will do our best to continue enlightening, entertaining and delighting the millions we serve on our airwaves and through our growing digital channels.” A then-21-year-old Solk began his programming career in 1983 at Chicago’s WLUP-FM “The Loop” and programmed comedy/talk WLUP-AM three years later. His resume also includes a tenure as Bonneville’s senior vice president of programming and the same title at Hubbard Broadcasting. Solk previously programmed Chicago sports talk WMVP and San Francisco triple A KFOG. Audacy Chicago is conducting an immediate search for Solk’s replacement at WXRT.

iHeartMedia Teams With NBA For Podcast Slate. The multi-year partnership between iHeartMedia and the National Basketball Association will feature more than 20 co-produced podcasts. The first one is set to debut this fall and will be distributed by the iHeartPodcast Network. According to iHeartMedia Sports president Kevin LeGrett, “The NBA is one of the toughest leagues in the world. These are relentless athletes with a grueling schedule at the absolute height of their game. Their stories are the stuff of legend and deserve mass-reach audiences and top-tier brand partners – iHeart alone can deliver that.” NBA senior vice president/national & local network partnerships David Denenberg comments, “We are excited to expand the league’s audio offerings to fans by teaming up with iHeartMedia to deliver NBA content and storytelling to the iHeartPodcast Network. We look forward to reaching more fans with content about our teams, players and history through this partnership.” Along with a mix of the latest league news; player commentary; and insider analysis, the podcasts will be produced using a wide variety of content from the NBA archives to tell backstories of some of the greatest moments in sports history.

Audacy’s NFL Training Camp Programming Kicks Off Tomorrow. “Training Camp Live” will be an in-depth look at National Football League training camp and preseason storylines. It debuts tomorrow (Friday, 7/30) and continues each Monday and Friday through September 3. Audacy vice president of sports Matt Volk remarks, “Training camp is the perfect time to capture pro football fans who are excited about the start of the season. By identifying insiders throughout our markets, this exclusive digital content will give fans a front row seat to all of the training camp and preseason storylines surrounding their favorite team.” Available on Audacy’s digital platform, “Training Camp Live” will be produced by these nine Audacy-owned sports talk properties: WFAN “Sports Radio 101.9 FM & 66 AM,” New York; WSCR “670 The Score,” Chicago; KGMZ “95.7 The Game,” San Francisco; KRLD-FM “105.3 The Fan,” Dallas; WJFK-FM “106.7 The Fan,” Washington, DC; WIP “Sports Radio 94,” Philadelphia; WEEI-FM “93.7 Boston’s Sports Station,” Boston; KDKA-FM “93.7 The Fan,” Pittsburgh; and KCSP “610 Sports Radio,” Kansas City.” Local Audacy NFL experts will provide twice weekly insights into all of the market’s team’s training camp news. Shows will be hosted by various on-air personalities from each station; episodes will be repurposed into time-shifted podcasts.

New York Festivals Announces Its 2021 Finalists. The 2021 Radio Awards Grand Jury of creative media professionals and content creators from around the world selected finalists based on production values, writing, creativity, direction, achievement of purpose, and audience suitability. Entries achieving “finalist” status will advance to the next round to determine gold, silver, and bronze trophies. New York Festivals Radio Awards vice president/executive director Rose Anderson notes, “Once again, this year’s finalists – in addition to appealing to their own listeners – also impressed the Grand Jury with their mastery of the audio medium. Across all genres, they proved that radio, the original social medium, is robust and thriving. From podcasts and audiobooks to sound art and breaking news, these talented storytellers bring the world together and engage in real time.” Global broadcasters led the way including Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, the 2020 NYF “Broadcaster of the Year,” and RTÉ Ireland, 2019’s “Broadcaster of the Year.” Additional prominent broadcasters moving onto the medal round include: BBC, Bloomberg, CBS News Radio, ESPN, National Radio of Argentina, Radio New Zealand, SiriusXM, and Westwood One. New categories were unveiled across all genres to shine the spotlight on “Social Justice.” The Radio Awards receives entries from radio stations, networks, and independent producers from over 30 countries. The mission of the competition is to honor the achievements of the men and women who make up the global audio storytelling community. The 2021 NYF Radio Award winners will be announced October 12th at the annual Storytellers gala taking place at NAB in Las Vegas. This is the 11th year of NYF’s strategic partnership with the NAB Show. View the complete list of the New York Festivals Radio Awards finalists by clicking here.

WOR, New York Personality Mark Simone is This Week’s Guest on Harrison Podcast. Longtime Big Apple radio star Mark Simone, who hosts the daily 10:00 am – 12:00 noon show on WOR, New York, is this week’s guest on the award-winning PodcastOne series, “The Michael Harrison Interview.” Simone, described by Harrison as the “ultimate embodiment of the expression ‘man-about-town’” for his numerous speaking engagements as a toastmaster and emcee has been a radio mainstay for decades in the nation’s number one market having performed on the rosters of such legendary outlets as WABC, WNEW, WMCA and WPIX, prior to joining WOR. For two years, he was the co-host of a three-hour daily comedy show with the legendary Steve Allen on the NBC Radio Network. He co-hosted a two-hour nightly talk show with Tom Snyder on the CBS Radio Network. In addition to discussing local and national politics, Simone is a music and entertainment historian who has hosted over 250 PBS entertainment specials and he has lectured at Hofstra University on the career and cultural legacy of Frank Sinatra. A regular guest on national cable TV, Simone and newspaper columnist Linda Stasi have co-hosted their “What a Week” segments for over 18 years on New York 1 TV, the highly-watched, all-news channel in NYC. Harrison and Simone discuss radio, politics, music, and technology in a fast-paced conversation that will engage both professional practitioners and dedicated fans of today’s cross-platform media environment. To listen to the podcast in its entirety, please click here.

Cumulus Media Nashville Extends Multi-Year Titans’ Agreement. Continuing as flagship of the National Football League’s Tennessee Titans through the 2025 NFL season is Cumulus Media Nashville sports talk WGFX “104.5 The Zone.” Cumulus Media Nashville vice president/market manager Allison Warren comments, “As the predominant sports voice in Middle Tennessee, we’re proud to extend our partnership with the Tennessee Titans. We are committed to bringing ‘104.5 The Zone’ listeners and Titans fans the compelling sports content they seek.” WGFX “104.5 The Zone” and Titans Radio Network operations manager/program director Paul Mason contends, “The Tennessee Titans and WGFX are among the best marriages in the NFL. We are excited to continue as the flagship station for Titans Radio. I am thrilled that our listeners will hear [the Titans] on ‘The Zone’ and Titans Radio for years to come.” Tennessee Titans senior vice president/chief marketing & revenue officer Gil Beverly adds, “The Tennessee Titans and ‘104.5 The Zone’ have had a long-standing partnership. We are excited to continue with a brand that shares our vision for the Titans. ‘The Zone’ has established itself as the preeminent Middle Tennessee sports leader and the Titans Radio Network will continue to create an incredible offering for passionate fans across the state.” WGFX will again have broadcasting rights for gameday play-by-play with Mike Keith and color analyst Dave “Coach Mac” McGinnis, as well as pre- and post-game programming. Also included are weekly shows such as “The Mike Vrabel Show,” “Titans Tonight,” and “Mac Talk.” Hall of Fame play-by-play announcer Keith and former NFL head coach McGinnis are entering their fifth season together on Titans Radio.

COVID-19, January 6 Committee, Voting Legislation, Infrastructure Bill, and Crime Were the Top News/Talk Stories on Wednesday. The rising rate of COVID-19 cases in the U.S., the Delta variant being the dominant strain, and vaccine hesitancy in many parts of the U.S. combined as the most-talked-about story on news/talk radio yesterday (7/28). That was followed closely by the dramatic January 6 Committee Hearings featuring the testimony of the police officers involved, the Economy and Crime and Violence in the nation’s urban centers. 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 updated and published every Friday at Talkers.com. See this week’s complete chart here.

TALKERS News Notes. Through his partnership with the iHeart Podcast Network, “Lore” creator Aaron Mahnke has fashioned supernatural podcast “Bridgewater.” The Lauren Shippen-written mystery is about folklore professor Jeremy Bradshaw, who is pulled into the mysterious 1980 disappearance of his police officer father, Thomas. “Along the way, he’s helped by some unlikely partners who challenge everything he believes in and ultimately tries to answer the question: Can the past actually be rewritten? Jeremy must chase the clues that will tell him whether his father really did fall victim to a satanic cult in the Bridgewater Triangle – or something much more dark and unexplainable.” The first two episodes of a ten-episode first season will be posted next Friday (8/6). A second season of 12 episodes has been approved for fall 2022. Among those in the “Bridgewater” cast are Nathan Fillion, Will Wheaton, Lori Alan, Hilarie Burton Morgan, Melissa Ponzio, and Misha Collins.

Timely Guest Alert! Attorney/author/commentator Wayne Avrashow has penned an insightful article about the California Recall, Larry Elder’s Bid, and celebrity candidacies. The article deals with the potential impact of talk show host Larry Elder’s bid to replace California Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom in the Golden State’s forthcoming recall election. In addition, Avrashow sheds light on the growing trend toward celebrity political candidacies across the nation. The article appears in today’s installment (Thursday, 7/29) of RealClearPolitics – Following in The Donald’s Celebrity Footsteps | RealClearPolitics. Attorney, college law professor and author, Avrashow is a respected non-partisan expert on the subject of California politics and is available for interviews. He has an extensive background in West Coast politics; served on two government commissions; was chair of a Los Angeles County ballot proposition; and co-authored ballot arguments. He began as a campaign manager for two victorious Los Angeles City Councilmembers and later served as a chief of staff. He can be contacted at 818-995-1100 or walaw@sbcglobal.net.

 

 

Audacy Greenville-Spartanburg news/talk WYRD “106.3 WORD” has an opening for a full-time, aggressive, curious reporter/anchor to add to our award-winning news staff. Candidates must demonstrate creative instincts in finding local stories. He or she must have efficient and effective writing skills and the ability to react to breaking news. The successful candidate should be familiar with news gathering tools and be comfortable with social network postings and usage, including video for digital assets. Experience writing, producing, and reporting news is required. If you are passionate about reporting news and creating compelling, story-telling news features for on-air and digital platforms, show us you have what it takes. Please submit your resume, cover letter, and work sample. https://careers-audacy.icims.com/jobs/2164/news-reporter/job.

The Sons of Liberty and Bradlee Dean are looking for an affiliate relations person to take over the current line-up. With 153 affiliates nationwide – as well as broadcasting in over 53 countries – The Sons of Liberty and Bradlee Dean rank as the #1 and # 2 show on the Genesis Communications Network (out of 65 show hosts); they seek to build even more. If interested please call 1-866-233-0747;  www.sonsoflibertymedia.com.

Monday, January 27, 2020

| January 27, 2020

Monday Memo: Format Solution?  Ever get a song stuck in your head?  Consultant Holland Cooke shares one that stuck in his 40 years ago.  And when you click-to-listen in this week’s column, HC thinks you could hear an opportunity. Check it out here.

Impeachment/Bolton Manuscript, Presidential Race, Coronavirus Concerns, U.S.-Iran Tensions/Rocket Attack on Baghdad Embassy, the Grammy Awards, and Kobe Bryant Death Among Top News/Talk Stories Over the Weekend. The impeachment trial of President Trump and the related manuscript by former Trump national security adviser John Bolton in which he suggests there was a quid pro quo; the Democrats vying to challenge President Trump in November; the Wuhan coronavirus and concerns about a global epidemic; the tensions between the U.S. and Iran and the rocket attack on the U.S. embassy in Baghdad; Sunday night’s Grammy Awards ceremony; and the death of NBA legend Kobe Bryant, his daughter and seven others in a helicopter crash were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio over the weekend, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

New Sports Talk Station ‘The Gambler’ Launches in Akron-Cleveland. This new gambling-centric sports talk outlet on WARF-AM, Akron launched by iHeartMedia Cleveland airs a mix of traditional sports talk shows and wagering-focused programs.  iHeartMedia says, “‘FOX Sports 1350 AM, The Gambler’ will focus on sports talk with a concentration on gambling, including top-of-the-hour wagering updates from the VSiN (Vegas Stats and Information Network) and will feature programming from the BetR Network, including ‘My Guys in the Desert,’ hosted by American sportscaster, Brent Musberger.  The station will also broadcast a mix of programming offering betting guides, handicapping, and betting strategies as well as signature programming from FOX Sports Radio, including ‘The Herd with Colin Cowherd’ and ‘FOX NFL Kickoff Simulcast,’ as well as ‘The Red Zone’ and ‘The Lombardi Line,’ hosted by former Cleveland Browns general manager Mike Lombardi.”

Karyn Cerulli Succeeds Bob Bolinger at Entercom San Diego. The Times of San Diego has the story from the market’s Entercom cluster.  Director of sales Karyn Cerulli is promoted to SVP and market manager for the station group as Bob Bolinger is leaving the role he’s held with the cluster since 2015.  Bolinger tells the paper he’s not retiring.  “The last four and a half years I have spent with Entercom have been among the most rewarding of my career.  I am very proud and grateful for what this amazing Entercom San Diego team has accomplished and wish them and Karyn only the very best.”  Bolinger joined Entercom from CBS RADIO.  He’d been with the San Diego stations since 2009.

iHeartMedia Names News Executives. In Pennsylvania, iHeartMedia announces that Brit Goldstein is named area president for iHeartMedia Pennsylvania.   At the same time, Nick Mickley is the new market president of iHeartMedia Harrisburg, Reading, and Lancaster; and Dave Hovel is named area SVP of programming for iHeartMedia Pennsylvania.  In this new position, Goldstein is responsible for creating new business and revenue opportunities, overseeing all programming, business and sales teams for iHeartMedia Pennsylvania, Delaware and the Eastern Shore stations.  He reports to division president Shosh Abromovich.  In his new role, Hovel oversees all on-air content as well as music and digital programming operations for the Salisbury, Wilmington, Allentown, Harrisburg, Erie, Reading, Lancaster, and Williamsport markets.

New Lineup at KIRO-FM, Seattle; ‘Tom & Curley’ Move to PM Drive.  It was a year ago that the “Candy, Mike & Todd” show – co-hosted by Candy Harper, Mike Lewis, and Todd Herman – took over for the “Ron & Don” – featuring Ron Upshaw and Don O’Neill – in afternoon drive on Bonneville International’s KIRO-FM, Seattle.  Now, that show is gone and the late morning “Tom & Curley” program hosted by Tom Tangney and John Curley moves to afternoon drive, effective Wednesday (1/29).  While both Candy Harper and Todd Herman exit the station, Mike Lewis partners with the station’s Aaron Mason to host the new 7:00 pm to 10:00 pm program.  The new late morning show (9:00 am to 12:00 noon) features award-winning Seattle journalist Ursula Reutin and the station’s Gee Scott, who moves from the evening daypart.  Regarding the afternoon drive change, KIRO-FM program director Bryan Buckalew says, “Tom and John are at the top of their game.  They have a unique ability to tackle the news from both sides of the issue, which consistently connects with listeners.”

Tim Weisberg New Host of Art Bell’s ‘Midnight in the Desert.’ Beginning tonight (1/27), radio pro Tim Weisberg takes over the hosting duties on the late-night radio show, “Midnight in the Desert,” the last program created by the late Art Bell.  Weisberg has been filling in on the program since 2018.  He currently serves as digital managing editor for Townsquare Media’s New Bedford, Massachusetts stations.  He’s also hosted the paranormal radio program/podcast “Spooky Southcoast” for 14 years – a project he’ll continue in addition to his new duties.  Weisberg has served as a writer/researcher/producer on paranormal television programs such as “Ghost Stalkers,” “Ghost Asylum,” and “Haunted Towns.”  He has also been featured in front of the camera on programs such as “Ghost Adventures,” “My Ghost Story,” “MonsterQuest,” “Most Haunted Towns,” and will be featured in two upcoming television series in 2020.  He is also the author of two books on the paranormal and is an award-winning sportswriter covering the New England Patriots and previously covering the Boston Celtics.  “Midnight in the Desert” was started by Art Bell in 2015.  The title of the program comes from a song written specifically for Bell by country music superstar Crystal Gayle.  Bell and subsequent hosts have continued to use the song, with Gayle’s blessing, as the program’s closing theme, something Weisberg said will continue.  “Although nobody will ever replace Art Bell, we at MITD think it’s important to honor his memory as the one who started it at all, especially this program.  While the best way we can pay tribute is to just continue to discuss these topics in a long-form, objective style, keeping the name and the theme song is just a small touch to make sure Art is never far from our thoughts.”

Round Three of Holiday PPMs Released. The third of four rounds of ratings data from Nielsen Audio’s Holiday PPM survey has been released for 12 markets including: Portland, Charlotte, San Antonio, Sacramento, Pittsburgh, Salt Lake City, Las Vegas, Orlando, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Kansas City, and Columbus.  The survey period was December 5 through January 1.  Spoken-word radio always faces a challenge during the calendar month of December due to holiday-related lifestyle changes and Christmas music listening.  In this batch of markets, the most positive news comes out of Kansas City where, thanks to the success of the Super Bowl bound Chiefs, sports talk radio enjoyed increased listening.  Union Broadcasting’s WHB got a three-tenths bounce to finish with a weekly 6+ AHQ share of 3.9 – good for the #9 ranking.  Entercom’s KCSP adds a half share to land at 2.7 and the #15 ranking in the market.  See all the 6+ numbers from subscribing stations here.  Meanwhile, TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian presents his Ratings Takeaways here.

TALKERS News Notes. Journalist Don Steinberg wrote a piece – published Saturday (1/25) – for Philadelphia Magazine that’s a deep-dive into Philly-based Entercom.  Interviewed for the piece are CEO David Field, Philadelphia SVP and market manager David Yadgaroff, and others.  The story addresses the company’s struggling stock price, its efforts to establish a leading position in the digital audio entertainment realm, and former employees’ gripes about management style, among others.  Read it here…..WHO, Des Moines afternoon drive talk host Simon Conway is being asked by the U.S. State Department – via its Foreign Press Centers – to host a telephone briefing for foreign journalists to explain the Iowa Caucuses.  The briefing is non-partisan.  Conway says, “It’s a great honor to be asked.  The point is to make sure that journalists around the world understand the process and report it accurately.”…..Sports media personalities Mark Titus and Tate Frazier are joining FOX Sports and Cumulus Media’s Westwood One for the new “Titus and Tate” podcast, available in visual formats on FOXSports.com, the FOX Sports app and social media platforms.  The audio version from Westwood One is available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Stitcher, TuneIn, and more.  Westwood One is the exclusive audio distribution and ad sales representation partner of the “Titus & Tate” podcast..…Barstool Radio on SiriusXM is broadcasting live from Miami Beach today through Friday, ahead of Super Bowl LIV.  Barstool’s biggest personalities, including Dave Portnoy, Dan ‘Big Cat’ Katz, Kevin ‘KFC’ Clancy, PFT Commenter, Kayce Smith, Willie Colon and others – will host their shows live from Tequila Chicas in the heart of South Beach…..The Mayo Clinic Radio team unveils the new “Mayo Clinic Q&A” podcast.  It features Mayo Clinic physicians, researchers, and care teams sharing knowledge about topics including cancer, heart health, scientific advances, artificial intelligence, and wellness.  Mayo Clinic Radio co-hosts Thomas Shives, M.D., and Tracy McCray anchor the new podcast.  Mayo Clinic Radio says, “While the weekly, hour-long ‘Mayo Clinic Radio’ program will continue to deliver easy-to-understand answers on more than 250 outlets across the U.S., each episode of the ‘Mayo Clinic Q&A’ podcast will highlight one subject.”  Dr. Shives adds, “With the resources of Mayo Clinic and thousands of physicians and medical experts supporting us, this tool is one more way to educate busy consumers on how to stay healthy and also help them learn more about serious or complex health topics.”…..iHeartMedia Denver announces that Mike Rice is the new play-by-play announcer for the Colorado Rockies baseball on flagship KOA, Denver.  Rice has been with KOA since 2002, serving in a number of sports roles, including studio host for the Denver Broncos, fill-in play-by-play announcer for the Colorado Rockies, and anchoring morning sportscasts.  He also serves as sports director for KOA, a position he will retain.  Rice joins Jack Corrigan, who is entering his 18th season as a play-by-play announcer for the Rockies.  In addition to play-by-play duties, Rice will host “Rockies All Access,” airing every Saturday on KOA…..Entercom sports talk outlet KRLD-FM, Dallas and the MLB’s Texas Rangers extend their broadcast deal to have the station continue to serve as the team’s radio flagship for the Texas Rangers Radio Network and the team’s English language radio play-by-play broadcasts…..The nationally syndicated “Motley Fool Money” show with host Chris Hill adds new stations KIFG-AM and KIFG-FM in Iowa City and WPVC-LPFM, in Charlottesville, Virginia to its roster of affiliates.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. In Chicago, Premiere Networks announces today that “The Sweat Hotel” – starring Keith Sweat – will move from the overnight daypart to the evening slot on iHeartMedia’s urban contemporary WVAZ “V103.”…..Dallas rock outlet KEGL “97.1 The Eagle” unveils the lineup for BFD 2020, taking place Sunday, May 24 at Dos Equis Pavilion.  Featured acts will be: Disturbed, Chevelle, The Pretty Reckless, Dirty Honey, The HU, Puddle of Mudd, Badflower, and Dinosaur Pile-UpiHeartMedia regional SVP of programming Patrick Davis says, “‘The Eagle’ is delivering yet another stellar lineup to kick off the summer concert season with BFD 2020.  Fans of ‘97.1 The Eagle’ always expect a great lineup and this year’s will not disappoint them.”

Thursday, December 12, 2019

| December 12, 2019

TALKERS and The Epoch Times Co-Present the Second in a Series of Talk Media Forums on US-China Relations at the National Press Club in Washington, DC.  In response to the positive feedback received about the recent “Talk Media Forum on US-China Relations” co-presented by TALKERS and The Epoch Times in New York City this past October 1 (see video here), a second installment of the event was successfully presented Tuesday morning (12/10) at the National Press Club in Washington, DC.  The conversation again focused on the US-China trade war, the Hong Kong protests, China’s human rights abuses, Huawei and the worldwide battle for 5G dominance, the North Korea nuclear threat, China’s ongoing intellectual property theft, and the long term goals and methods of the Chinese Communist Party, plus more. The 90-minute event featured a panel of three experts on the state of US-Chinese relations including Nan Su of NTDTVJoshua Philipp and Dr. Dana Cheng of The Epoch Times, plus four leading talk radio hosts – John Fredericks of the John Fredericks Radio NetworkDr. Sebastian Gorka of the Salem Radio NetworkLarry O’ Connor of WMAL, Washington, DC; and Doug Stephan of Stephan Multimedia. According to TALKERS publisher Michael Harrison, who again moderated the discussion, “The numerous pressing issues that exist under the umbrella of US-China relations promise to be a major component of talk media conversation for years to come and it is important that its practitioners stay on top of these complex concerns free of the spin and propaganda constantly manufactured by the Communist regime in Beijing.  Our colleagues at The Epoch Times are firmly situated on the leading edge of the Chinese resistance to the Communist grasp on their homeland and serve the culture’s diaspora in the United States and around the world with bold, truthful reporting of the facts.” The Epoch Times was formed in 2000 by Chinese Americans and is now published in multiple languages around the world.  A video of the entire forum will be posted on Talkers.com within the next few days. Pictured below are (from l-r): moderator, Michael Harrison, TALKERS; Dr. Sebastian Gorka, Salem Radio Network; Dr. Dana Cheng, The Epoch Times; John Fredericks, The John Fredericks Radio Network; Doug Stephan, Stephan Multimedia; Larry O’ Connor, WMAL, Washington, DC; Josh Philipp, The Epoch Times; and Nan Su, The Epoch Times/NTDTVPhoto: Samira Bouaou/The Epoch Times

KYW-AM, Philadelphia Reporter Barred from Press Conference. Maybe it was a snafu, but the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office’s explanation for KYW-AM, Philadelphia crime and justice reporter Kristen Johanson being barred from the press conference for a criminal case is inconsistent.  DA Larry Krasner was asked by fellow FOX 29 journalist Jeff Cole if Johanson had been barred from the conference and he replied, “What I can tell you is I did not bar anybody from coming to a conference.  We always enjoy having Kristen Johanson here and if there’s been some kind of miscommunication, then I’m sorry to hear that that has occurred.”  The DA offices’ spokesperson later said only reporters who requested comment on the case were notified of the press conference.  However, a reporter from the Philadelphia Inquirer who did request a comment was not invited to the press conference either.  The spokesperson then said “security protocols” were the reason Johanson was denied access to the conference.  KYW program director Alex Silverman says, “A press conference open to some members of the media should be open to all.  To deny access to a reporter who covers the crime and justice beat in our city raises serious questions about how the District Attorney’s Office views a free and fair press.”

Opinion: Gen Z Is Excited About Radio. Georgia College lecturer Chad Whittle writes in an opinion piece for TALKERS magazine about the intertest in radio he’s hearing from his students.  He says, “This semester, I have had the honor and privilege of getting to teach a course on radio broadcasting to students ranging from freshmen to sophomores.  In this course, multiple students are excited about learning more about the radio industry.  I know because they told me last semester they were interested and eager to take the class.”  Read his story here.

Slater Joins Entercom for Digital Sales Role. Sales pro Andy Slater joins Entercom as SVP of digital sales, East Coast.  He was most recently regional VP of sales for Stitcher’s Midroll Media ad sales division.  Entercom EVP of digital sales Ken Lagana says, “Andy has a tremendous track record leading sales strategy across numerous digital platforms, most recently in podcasting.  His unique combination of experience in broadcast radio and digital will prove to be a major asset as we continue developing and expanding our position as leaders in the digital audio marketplace.”

Articles of Impeachment, Inspector General’s FBI Report, 2020 Presidential Race, Jersey City Shooting, USMCA Trade Deal, and UK Election Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (12/11). The articles of impeachment against President Trump; the inspector general’s report on the failures within the FBI; the Democrats vying to challenge President Trump in 2020; the aftermath of the deadly shooting in Jersey City; the Trump administration’s United States-Mexico-Canada trade deal; and Britain’s prime minister election were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

TALKERS News Notes. In Kansas City, Entercom appoints Josh Vernier to the Royals insider position.  Vernier had been co-host of the “Show and Vern” midday program on sports talk KCSP “610 Sports Radio” prior to the exit of co-host Ron “Show” Hughley last month.  This is a return to the Royals insider position for Vernier, who will also host the pre- and post-game shows for Royals play-by-play on KCSP.  He’ll also host the “Royals Hot Stove Show” this winter…..ESPN reports that last month, ESPN Podcasts set a new record for the month with a verified unique audience of 7.3 million, according to Podtrac.  ESPN says the total represents an increase of 28% over November 2018 and is the 11th consecutive month of year-over-year growth.  In addition, ESPN podcasts had 45.6 million downloads, up 24% from November 2018 and just shy of last month’s all-time record of 46.1 million…..iHeartMedia sports talk WYGM-AM/W245CL, Orlando “FM 96.9 The Game” is hosting a live holiday show special during the “Open Mike” morning show to benefit the Boys and Girls Clubs of Central Florida.  Former Orlando Magic head coach and current NBA TV analyst Stan Van Gundy will join the show dressed up as Santa Claus and will encourage listeners to stop by, take pictures, and donate new unwrapped toys or cash for children in the local community.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. Programming pro Dustin Matthews is named director of rock programming for iHeartMedia’s Washington, DC stations classic rock WBIG “BIG 100” and alternative WWDC “DC 101,” effective January 13. He comes to Washington from iHeartMedia’s Charlotte operations where he was program director and afternoon drive personality at WEND “106.5 The End.”  iHeartMedia regional SVP of programming Jeff Kapugi says, “Dustin is one of the most dynamic rock programmers in the country.  His programming expertise combined with his creativity and passion for our rock brands is unparalleled and we look forward to welcoming him to Washington, D.C.”…..Entercom announces that it has signed a new, multiyear deal with WPOW, Miami “Power 96” program director and midday host Miguel “Mijo” Irizarry for him to continue in those roles.  Entercom South Florida SVP and market manager Keriann Worley says, “‘Mijo’ has been a strong force in the ‘Power 96’ studio over the last year.  We are thrilled that he will continue to lead one of our most iconic brands in our cluster.”  ‘Mijo’ joined ‘Power 96’ in August 2017.  He assumed the role of program director in October 2018…..Tegna’s adult hits KFMB-FM, San Diego names Soleil Spigelman the new producer of “The Cantore Show.”  She says, “Becoming a part of ‘The Cantore Show’ is a big step in joining the San Diego community.  I’m from a small surfing town in the San Francisco Bay Area and I immediately feel at home here in SD.  I’m looking forward to showcasing my passion for entertaining people and sharing my kooky-yet relatable-personality with this on-air family and our listeners.”