Tag: "Lance Zierlein"
Zellner Promoted to President of Programming Operations at iHeartMedia’s National Programming Group. The company says that Jon Zellner is moving up from his EVP of programming operations to president of programming operations for its national programming group. In this new role he’ll continue to manage the division’s operations, “ensuring that iHeartMedia’s 850 local radio station brands in 150 markets are able to best utilize the company’s unparalleled national resources. In addition to managing iHeartMedia custom programming, daily connection to the local markets, on-air partner integration and event broadcast operations, Zellner will also now partner with other divisions within the company to expand programming technology and provide key support to iHeartMedia’s national team of programmers at market-leading radio brands that serve more than a quarter of a billion listeners a month in the U.S.” iHeartMedia chief programming officer Tom Poleman says, “Jon’s leadership in the growth of our custom programming and providing the delivery of our at scale national resources to our markets for their use at the local level has been invaluable to our company. We are excited that he’ll be taking on an even larger role in our company-wide programming initiatives.”
Tori Kahl Named Market Manager for iHeartMedia New Orleans. Radio sales pro Tori Kahl moves from iHeartMedia’s Mobile-Pensacola cluster where she was SVP of sales to New Orleans where she is the new market president for the station group that includes news/talk WRNO-FM sports talk WODT-AM plus six music radio outlets. iHeartMedia area president for Baton Rouge and New Orleans Michael Hudson says, “iHeartMedia is big on promoting our super stars within the company. Tori has done an incredible job growing our Mobile properties and its employees. I have no doubt that Tori Kahl will do great things for the New Orleans market.” Kahl comments, “As I join the iHeartMedia New Orleans team, I am humbled to have the opportunity to work alongside some of the most talented professionals in the industry, representing the power of iHeartMedia and the heritage of our brands in the market. The city of New Orleans, its culture, and its people are unparalleled. I am born and raised in Louisiana – it feels good to be home!”
News Anchor Kim Gordon Moves to PM Drive on WGN, Chicago. Twelve-year WGN news staffer Kim Gordon is named the new afternoon drive news anchor at Tribune’s WGN-AM, Chicago. The station says, “Gordon will assume a role as both a leader in the WGN Radio news room and an essential voice on ‘The Roe Conn Show with Anna Davlantes.’” WGN director of news and operations Stephanie Tichenor adds, “For more than a decade at WGN, Kim has been a key player in our newsroom and in our hallways. Her ability to gather and deliver news with a Chicago filter makes her the best voice for our afternoon drive team.” Gordon started her career at legendary Louisville news/talk station WHAS.
A.J. Hoffman Appointed KFNC-FM, Houston PD. At sports talk KFNC-FM, Houston “ESPN 97.5,” A.J. Hoffman is promoted to program director. Hoffman currently co-hosts the Gow Media station’s afternoon drive program, “The Blitz,” with Fred Faour – a duty he will continue in addition to his new programming responsibilities. WFNC general manager Todd Farquharson says, “We are excited to elevate AJ to the PD position. He has demonstrated excellent programming instincts and we think his experiences and leadership abilities make him a natural for this opportunity.” Farquharson says “ESPN 97.5FM” has grown significantly over the past two years. “In a competitive Houston landscape, the station has finished #1 for M25-54 nearly every month of 2018. In the fall of 2017, we committed to a nearly all local lineup. We were able to bring back Lance Zierlein, reuniting John [Granato]and Lance in the mornings, and insert Charlie Pallilo in middays. With this talented group, our audience totals are up 50% year-over-year.”
Former WBAL-AM Morning Host Dave Durian Dies at 72. Former longtime WBAL-AM, Baltimore news and morning drive personality Dave Durian died yesterday (1/28) at 72 after suffering complications from cancer and a stroke. The Baltimore Sun’s obituary chronicles his career, especially his time at WBAL. The Iowa native arrived in Baltimore in 1982 as an anchor at WBAL-TV. After three years there, worked in public TV before returning to Hearst as morning talk show host for WBAL-AM. WBAL morning news anchor John Patti is quoted saying, “He was the smoothest reader of the news I’ve ever met. He could read it cold — you could give him a piece of news copy and he read it so effortlessly he made it sound like it had been news all morning.”
Border Wall Battle, Trump-Russia Investigation, Frigid Forecast for Midwest, 2020 Democratic Hopefuls-Schultz Considers Run, U.S.-China Trade War-Huawei Allegations, Brokaw ‘Hispanic Assimilation’ Controversy, Venezuela Unrest/Bolton Columbia Note, PG&E Files for Bankruptcy, SAG Awards, and Super Bowl LIII Build-Up Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (1/28). The political battle in congress over President Trump’s proposed U.S.-Mexico border wall; the report that Robert Mueller is close to wrapping his Trump-Russia investigation and the indictment of Roger Stone; the record cold set to hit the Midwest; the 2020 Democratic hopefuls and a possible run by Starbucks founder Howard Schultz; the trade tensions between the U.S. and China and the charges against Huawei and CEO Meng Wanzhou; the controversy over newsman Tom Brokaw’s statement that Hispanics in the U.S. should try harder to assimilate; the Venezuelan political crisis and the flap over national security adviser John Bolton’s ‘5,000 troops to Columbia’ note; PG&E files for bankruptcy in the wake of charges filed against it over the recent California wildfires; Sunday night’s Screen Actors Guild awards; and the build-up to Super Bowl LIII were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.
iHeartCountry Festival Acts Announced. The iHeartCountry Festival at the Frank Erwin Center in Austin, Texas on Saturday, May 4 will be the sixth edition of the concert event produced by iHeartMedia. This year, the acts committed to performing include: Tim McGraw, Florida Georgia Line, Dan and Shay, Luke Combs, Little Big Town, Lauren Alaina, Old Dominion, Chris Janson, Bobby Bones & The Raging Idiots, and Tenille Townes. Syndicated personality Bobby Bones will serve as host on the main stage. He says, “I look forward to the iHeartCountry Festival every year. It’s always special to have so much of the country music community together in one place, including some really talented new artists we have been supporting on Women of iHeartCountry.”
More Music Radio News and Career Moves. Programmer John E. Kage is named program director at iHeartMedia’s CHR KPTT “95.7 The Party.” He moves across town from his most recent position as program director for Bonnville’s country KYGO. Kage says, “I am excited to remain in my adopted home of Denver, Colorado where I have 20 years of deep roots and relationships. iHeartMedia’s unparalleled platforms provide a tremendous opportunity for present and future growth in a rapidly changing environment. I look forward to working with my team to help contribute to 95.7 The Party’s ongoing success.”…..The afternoon team of Matty Blake and Nick Stevens exits Entercom’s rock WAAF, Boston and are being replaced – at least on an interim basis – by Bob Hannah. Blake and Stevens took over the afternoon drive slot in 2017…..Cumulus Media announces that country KHAY, Oxnard-Ventura OM/PD Chris Cox is retiring from the station and the business after a 45-year career. He’s been with KHAY since 2012 and had worked in numerous markets during his career, including Los Angeles, Houston, Cincinnati, Louisville, and more. Cumulus regional VP Sommer Frisk says, “Oxnard-Ventura-Santa Barbara has been extremely fortunate to have benefited from Chris’s stewardship over the last seven years. What we will miss about Chris is his dedication, hard work, professionalism and relentless commitment to the success of our cluster. What we will miss MOST about Chris is his leadership, character and compassion. We wish him well in his much-deserved retirement.”…..As reported by Chicago media writer Robert Feder, Melissa McGurren is leaving the traffic reporting department at Hubbard Radio’s hot AC WTMX to begin an expanded role on the “Eric in the Morning with Melissa & Whip” show. As previously reported, Violeta Podrumedic is leaving WGN-AM to join WTMX as morning drive traffic reporter…..KJCK-FM, Manhattan, Kansas adds Westwood One’s Adam Bomb show to its programming lineup.
Peter Casey Exits WBZ-AM, Boston After 24 Years. Longtime director of news and programming Peter Casey exits all-news WBZ-AM, Boston. The Boston Globe reports that Casey has been let go by iHeartMedia, which is operating the station under an LMA until it closes on the station. WBZ-AM is joining iHeartMedia as part of a swap of assets with Entercom for the latter to comply with station ownership limits. Casey tells the paper he has nothing bad to say about iHeartMedia and calls the people he’s been dealing with “respectful and impressive.” Casey, who’s been director of news and programming for the past 21 years, wrote in a memo to staffers, “I will cherish the memories of this place, of all of you and those that came before you. I will keep those memories with me. I will keep them a part of me even as I walk out the door today on my very last day at WBZ NewsRadio 1030.” Assistant program director Bill Flaherty is serving as interim director of news and programming.
Lance Zierlein Returns to Houston Airwaves. Houston sports talk personality Lance Zierlein is back on the radio today at Gow Broadcasting’s KFNC-FM, co-hosting the 7:00 am to 9:00 am show with John Granato. The two will be joined by Raheel Ramzanali for the 9:00 am to 10:00 am hour that is being simulcast on KFNC-FM and KFNC-HD2. As part of his new gig, Zierlein will also write for the Gow-owned CultureMap and SportsMap digital publications. He exited iHeartMedia’s crosstown sports talk KBME back in July. During his tenure on Houston sports talk radio he also served with the former CBS RADIO station KILT-AM, where he worked with Granato for 10 years (1997-2007).
Westwood One Announces New Leadership Structure. National radio network Westwood One reveals strategic changes to the leadership and structure of its national sales team, effective immediately. The Cumulus Media-owned company says, “These organizational changes are designed to capitalize on Westwood One’s strong sales momentum, as well as to propel the organization to new heights in 2018 and beyond.” Bryan Forbes replaces the retiring Steve Shaw as president, sales at Westwood One. He’s responsible for leading the network and national spot sales organizations and reporting to Westwood One president Suzanne Grimes. Forbes was most recently with Katz Radio Group as SVP and general manager of Westwood One national sales. Current EVP strategic partnerships Mark Wildman is charged with launching the Audio Active Group – a newly established, dedicated business development team responsible for “creating integrated, brand-focused solutions that leverage the vast portfolio of assets across the company’s 446 radio stations and network platforms.” Pierre Bouvard continues in his role as chief insights officer at Cumulus/Westwood One. And Ari Molovinsky joins Westwood One as VP strategic planning & analysis, responsible for “supporting the leadership team with revenue-focused and general management initiatives.” Molovinsky was most recently with SiriusXM. Grimes states, “Westwood One has a top-notch sales organization in place, as demonstrated by our performance this year, and I am thrilled to welcome both Bryan and Ari to the team. With these new hires, as well as the exciting launch of the Audio Active Group and expansion of our actionable data and thought-leadership platform, Westwood One is poised to deliver significant growth as we continue to champion radio as the #1 mass reach medium that delivers exceptional results.”
Media Equality Project to Stage Event at National Press Club. The Media Equality Project is led by talk media pros Melanie Morgan and Brian Maloney. Joining them for Wednesday’s event at the National Press Club in Washington, DC is fellow talk radio pro Blanquita Cullum. A press release says the goal of the event is to pressure Senator Al Franken (D-MN) and Congressmen John Conyers (D-MI) and Joe Barton (R-TX) to resign. Organizers say, “…We’re taking the Media Equality Project straight to Washington. Dozens of women and other victims of sexual harassment are joining together this Wednesday with this message: #ShowUsTheList of representatives or staffers who received taxpayer funded pay-outs totaling $17 million dollars. The Media Equality Project is bringing Bill Clinton’s victims, other luminaries, including Dr. Alveda King, niece of the late Martin Luther King, and others to Washington to confront Franken, Conyers, and Barton. We believe that this effort should be in a spirit of bi-partisanship in order to end sexual harassment on Capitol Hill and across the country…joining us at the podium at the National Press Club are Kathleen Willey, Juanita Broaddrick, Paula Jones, [and former Fort Smith, Arkansas TV reporter] Leslie Millwee.” The event takes place at 10:00 am in the National Press Club’s First Amendment Room.
Mike Golic Breaks Silence on ‘Mike & Mike’ Breakup; New ‘Golic & Wingo’ Show. Speaking to the Coloradoan, Mike Golic tells the paper that he was blindsided by the decision to end the show because now-ex-partner Mike Greenberg was taking on a new role on the TV side of ESPN. “When I went into see the bosses, I thought it was to talk about the next deal since our contracts were ending. We had talked the previous year about moving the show to New York and I thought maybe it was about that. Instead, they told me the show was going to end and that Greenie was going to do a show in New York and I was going to do a show with my son.” As regular industry watchers know, ESPN Radio’s “Mike & Mike” morning drive show went on for about six months with the two knowing the show would wrap before the end of the year. Today (11/27), the new “Golic & Wingo” show launched (pictured above with NBA commissioner Adam Silver as their first guest) with Trey Wingo as co-host. Read the Coloradoan piece here.
DC Sexual Impropriety Allegations, Roy Moore Case, Thanksgiving Holiday, Mueller Investigation-Flynn Cooperation, Meredith-Time Inc. Purchase, CFPB Appointment, College Football Playoff Scenarios, and NFL Action Among Top News/Talk Stories Over the Holiday Weekend. The sexual impropriety allegations lodged against Al Franken and John Conyers; the sexual predation charges leveled at Alabama U.S. Senate candidate Roy Moore; the Thanksgiving holiday; special prosecutor Robert Mueller’s investigation into possible connections between Trump campaign operatives and Russian agents and reports of cooperation between former national security adviser Michael Flynn and the investigation; Iowa-based media company Meredith to buy Time Inc.; controversy over Consumer Financial Protection Bureau appointment; the weekend’s college football games and speculation about which teams will make the four-team tournament; and the weekend’s NFL games were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio over the weekend, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.
KYW-AM, Philadelphia Awards Computers to Local Elementary School. This promotion was a partnership with Comcast which, along with Entercom’s all-news KYW-AM, Philadelphia, presented 10 new Dell Latitude Education Series laptops to General Philip Kearny Elementary School in Philadelphia. KYW director of news and programming Steve Butler states, “As the nation’s unrivaled leader in news, Entercom is committed to enriching the lives of local residents. KYW Newsradio’s partnership with Comcast, allows us to support local community organizations like General Philip Kearny Elementary School in their commitment to education.” Pictured above are KYW and Comcast representatives with students and teachers at the school.
TALKERS News Notes. National radio news service Westwood One News is reporting affiliate renewals for major market stations including: WINS, New York; KYW, Philadelphia; WBZ-AM, Boston; and WWJ, Detroit. The news network also announces its expanding reach as more than 70 new stations join the network, including: KKOB-AM, Albuquerque; KMJ-AM/FM, Fresno; and KOKC-AM, Oklahoma City…..SiriusXM announces former Cleveland Cavaliers general manager David Griffin and former Phoenix Suns front office exec Amin Elhassan are joining the roster of NBA experts on its SiriusXM NBA Radio channel. Griffin makes his debut tomorrow (11/28) from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm ET alongside host Joel Meyers and can be heard multiple times every week. Elhassan joins the roster on Sunday, December 10 and will be on regularly with host Jason Jackson.
Small Business Guru Jim Blasingame Joins Michael Harrison on This Week’s Installment of “Up Close and Far Out.” Noted small business expert and talk show host Jim Blasingame is this week’s guest on the award-winning PodcastOne series, “Up Close and Far Out with Michael Harrison.” Blasingame is the tremendously successful independently-syndicated host of the long-running radio show, “The Small Business Advocate.” The program is celebrating its 20th anniversary on the air. He and Harrison discuss various aspects of entrepreneurism as we accelerate from the analog era of the 20th century deeper into the digital age of the 21st century focusing on the increasing disconnect between Wall Street and Main Street in our economy and society. Harrison says, “Blasingame is a unique player in the talk industry and a fascinating, bright man. He proves on every level that independent media and business can still be viable in this brave new world.” To listen to the podcast in its entirety, please click here or click on the “Up Close and Far Out” player box located in the right-hand column on every page of Talkers.com.
Music Radio News and Career Moves. Classic rock WBIG and alternative WWDC, Washington program director James Howard is promoted to vice president of programming for iHeartMedia’s DC station group that also includes CHR WIHT “HOT 99.5,” adult contemporary WASH-FM, and country WMZQ. Howard will continue to program WBIG and WWDC. iHeartMedia SVP of programming Jeff Kapugi states, “James has been a rock star for years. Now he gets to be an AC star, a country star and a top 40 star. This is a well-deserved promotion for one of the most creative programmers I’ve had the opportunity to work with.”…..Cox Media Group announces on-air changes at urban contemporary WALR-FM, Atlanta “KISS 104.1” The new morning show is called “Morning Groove” with Art Terrell and Roy Wood Jr. with news and information from Condace Pressley. CMG Atlanta VP of programming Tony Kidd says the show will include commentary, opinions and humor from voices like Clark Howard, Corey “Zooman” Miller, and Aaron Paxton Arnold. “The changes we’re making represent a new day dawning in Atlanta R&B music. This new programming lineup reflects what Atlanta’s African-American listeners want most from their favorite R&B station.” Also, Sasha the Diva takes over the afternoon drive daypart.
Bill O’Reilly Touts New Operation; Promises ‘Grisly’ News About His Fox Ouster. At a performance at the NYCB Theatre in Westbury (Long Island) on Saturday, former Fox News Channel personality Bill O’Reilly told attendees, “In the weeks to come, there will be a bunch of news stories that will explain what happened and why it happened,” regarding his exit from FNC. “It’s pretty grisly. It’s pretty nasty. It has to do with far-left progressive organizations that are bent on destroying anybody with whom they disagree, including the president.” This is according to CNN, which covered his “The Spin Stops Here Tour” that includes former Westwood One talk host (and ‘SNL’ alum) Dennis Miller. Newsday also covered the event and reports O’Reilly promoted the efforts of his eponymous website. “But I am starting my own operation. We are going to do that.” He says they will being airing a new, half-hour newscast “where we will go into a studio and it will look like ‘The Factor.’ It’s basically an experiment to see how many people are going to want this service. That’s coming and will be here before September in a robust form. But I suspect there will be another network maybe merging with us. There will be a network that rises up because the numbers for Fox are going down.” However, the CNN report also indicates he’s not exactly predicting the death of FNC, answering a question from the audience about starting a TV network to compete with Fox, “Don’t underestimate it. The Fox brand is very strong. They have a lot of talent. But if you want to get into that game, you need about $200 million.”
KBME, Houston Moves Josh Innes to AM Drive in Schedule ShuffleWith the impending departure of Lance Zierlein from the station at the end of his contract, “The Proper Gentlemen of Sports” morning drive show will disappear and current afternoon personality Josh Innes will move to mornings, effective July 17. Zierlein’s co-host Matt Thomas moves to the 12:00 noon to 3:00 pm daypart. “In the Trenches with Koch & Kalu” moves up an hour to 10:00 am to 12:00 noon, and “The Bottom Line” moves from middays to afternoon drive. Joining “Bottom Line” hosts Adam Clanton and Sean Jones will be Jayson Braddock. iHeartMedia director of AM programming Bryan Erickson states, “We’ve received a lot of great feedback since Josh joined ‘SportsTalk 790.’ Love him or hate him, he’s one of the most passionate guys on the radio right now and that resonates with sports fans.”
Reynolds Appointed Marketing/Promotions Director for iHM Portland. Radio pro Susan Reynolds joins the Portland operations of iHeartMedia as marketing/promotions director. The cluster includes news/talk KEX “News Radio 1190,” sports talk KPOJ “Rip City Radio,” country K279BO “103.7 The Legend,” rock KFBW “105.9 The Brew,” hip hop KXJM “JAM’N 107.5,” classic hits KLTH “106.7 The Eagle,” CHR KKRZ “Z100,” and adult contemporary KKCW “K103.” Reynolds’ experience includes time spent as a freelance publicist for various lifestyle clients; talk show producer at CJAD-AM, Montreal; director of marketing and promotion for Alpha Media Portland; and marketing and promotions director for KSOL, San Francisco.
Second Annual Hubbard Radio Talent Institute Begins at Central Washington University. Today begins the second annual Hubbard Radio Talent Institute at Central Washington University in Ellensburg, Washington. Hubbard Radio chair and CEO Ginny Morris leads the opening session of the 10-day institute. She says, “Compelling and relatable on-air talent is what separates local radio from all other audio entertainment services. Our investment in the National Radio Talent System at Central Washington University is an extension of Hubbard Radio’s commitment to do our part to nurture and grow the talent pipeline for the industry. We are proud to partner with Dan Vallie and his team in this important initiative.” Hubbard president Drew Horowitz will close the institute with his session titled, “Now is the Time to Start Thinking like a Pro.” Students from various universities in the state and region accepted into the program will learn from radio pros from Hubbard, Bonneville, Alpha Media, Entercom, Townsquare Media, and others. Each student will be certified as a Radio Marketing Professional by RAB.
TALKERS News Notes. Effective today, KSOO, Sioux Falls, South Dakota moves Fox News Radio’s “Kilmeade & Friends” with Brian Kilmeade from the delayed evening broadcast to a live airing from 8:00 am to 11:00 am CT…..Fred Weinberg is the new CEO of USA Radio’s parent company, Anthem Broadcasting LLC. He announces in a press release that Corrie Creasman is now news director for the network and that USA content is being distributed digitally via VPN…..This year’s NAB Marconi Radio Awards Dinner and Show, taking place on September 7 at the 2017 Radio Show in Austin, is being emceed by Reach Media-syndicated personality Rickey Smiley…..Rock’n Robin Productions and ABC Radio announce that Robin Roberts’ podcast series “Robin Roberts: Everybody’s Got Something” returns on Wednesday (6/21). The 10-episode series will continue to feature aspirational, positive and intimate discussions that ABC says resonated so deeply with listeners in season one. ABC Radio vice president Steve Jones comments, “After a debut season filled with candid and uplifting conversations, we are thrilled to have Robin return with 10 new emotionally satisfying episodes for listeners.”
Trump-Russia Investigation, Iran Attacks Syrian ISIS Targets, USS Fitzgerald Collision, Megyn Kelly-Alex Jones Interview, GOP Baseball Shooting, Kaepernick Police Comments, U.S. Open, and MLB Action Among Top News/Talk Stories Over the Weekend. The special counsel investigation into possible links between Trump campaign operatives and Russian agents and debate over whether President Donald Trump himself is being investigated; Iran launches missiles into Syria at ISIS targets in response to Tehran terror attacks; the deaths of seven sailors in the collision of the USS Fitzgerald with a merchant marine vessel; the controversy over Megyn Kelly’s Sunday broadcast of her interview with Infowars’ Alex Jones; the status of U.S. Rep. Steve Scalise and the attack on the GOP baseball practice; Colin Kaepernick’s comments that police are comparable to runaway slave patrols after the ‘not guilty’ verdict in the case against officer Jeronimo Yanez; Brooks Koepka wins the U.S. Open; and Major League Baseball action were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio over the weekend, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.
KGO’s Ethan Bearman on Fox News Channel’s ‘The Specialists.’ The screen capture above is from KGO, San Francisco midday talk host Ethan Bearman’s recent appearance on Fox News Channel’s “The Specialists” program. The show makes regular use of radio talk show hosts.
Music Radio News and Career Moves. Air personality Aimee Montgomery shifts from Beasley Media Group’s hot AC KVGS “Star 107.9” to adult contemporary W268CS “Lite 101.5” as midday host, effective July 5. Montgomery joined “Star 107.9” in 2015 and most recently served as a co-host of the morning show and worked as local on-air liaison/producer for the “Brooke and Jubal” program. Beasley Las Vegas operations manager John Candelaria comments, “We have witnessed Aimee’s great attitude, effort, and dedication. We look forward to her applying these same skills across the hall on ‘Lite FM.’”…..Programming pro Joshua Raiford, a.k.a. J1, moves from Urban One’s Indianapolis cluster where he was PD of hip hop WHHH “Hot 96.3” and CHR W275BD “Boom 102.9” to Washington to program the company’s hip hop WKYS. Raiford comments, “I’m humbled, honored and excited about this great opportunity. I thank God first and foremost, and I would also like to thank Jay Stevens, Jeff Wilson, and Kashon Powell for selecting me for this tremendous responsibility.”…..Longtime triple A WXRT, Chicago personality Wendy Rice is leaving the station. She’s been the host of “Saturday Morning Flashback” for more than 30 years. Rice married then-station PD Norm Winer in 1987 and works full time as a middle school teacher. Taking over her duties will be WXRT’s Frank E. Lee and Johnny Mars who will rotate as host of the 8:00 am to 11:00 am program…..There are three moves to report from CBS RADIO’s Philadelphia cluster from VP of music programming Shelly Easton. Mark Radziewicz (a.k.a. Razz) of country WXTU, Nicky G. of classic hits WOGL, and Michael Bennett of adult contemporary WTDY all add assistant program director to their titles. All three remain music directors for their stations…..Brian Fisher is upped to operations manager at Curtis Media Group’s Boone, North Carolina cluster. Fisher will continue to host the 11:00 am to 2:00 ppm show on country duo WMMY/WWMY “Highway 106.1 and 102.3” and handle operations at news/talk WATA-AM/W243DH and Gospel WECR…..Beasley Media Group launches a “Southern”-based format on W234BY, Charlotte branded “94.7 Smoke.” Beasley says “the core of the playlist will be Southern rock, however, ‘94.7 Smoke’ will also play anything it deems ‘Southern,’ including both local and new artists. In addition, the station will focus all things deemed ‘Southern,’ including hunting, fishing, four-wheeling, pick-up trucks, cold beer, horseshoes, great BBQ, Myrtle Beach, The Smokies, NASCAR and more!”
CBS RADIO’s KNCI, Sacramento Forced to Apologize for Artist Snub. This is one that CBS RADIO’s country KNCI, Sacramento would like to have back. Up-and-coming artist Lindsay Ell was scheduled to be part of a station appearance at KNCI by country artists in town on Brad Paisley’s “Weekend Warrior World Tour.” But, Lindsay happens to be dating air personality Bobby Bones and his show airs on iHeartMedia’s crosstown KBEB “92.5 The Bull.” So, the station “uninvited” her. She tweeted about the incident, apologizing to her fans. Meanwhile, “The Bull” took the bull by the horns and declared it Lindsay Ell Day and played her single, “Waiting on You,” every hour on the hour. Realizing its error, KNCI subsequently tweeted out the following, “Lindsay is an amazingly talented, up-and-coming artist and today we regrettably made a bad decision to cancel her show. We only hope that she — and our listeners — will forgive us, and that Lindsay and her team will allow us to reschedule the show.”