Jim Bohannon is This Week’s Guest on Harrison Podcast. One of the most honored, celebrated and longest-running active radio personalities in American broadcasting, Jim Bohannon, is this week’s guest on the award-winning PodcastOne series, “The Michael Harrison Interview.” His show airs every night between 10:00 pm and 1:00 am ET delivering his unique brand of wit and wisdom on more than 300 stations via Westwood One. A member of the TALKERS Heavy Hundred list since its inception in the early 90s, he was a recipient of the TALKERS Lifetime Achievement Award in 2013. Among his many achievements, Bohannon is an inductee in the Radio Hall of Fame and is about to be inducted in the NAB Hall of Fame at the NAB Show later this month in Las Vegas. Harrison and Bohannon take a deep dive into this Vietnam War veteran’s colorful career as well as exploring their panoramic perspective of radio and related media’s past, present, and future. This is not to be missed! To listen to the podcast in its entirety, please click here.
Gabfest at Mar-a-Lago. TALKERS publisher Michael Harrison and his wife Bernadette Duncan attended a dinner/discussion last night (4/13) hosted by Newsmax CEO Christopher Ruddy at Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Florida. Former President Donald Trump joined the chat (pictured above) which covered a variety of topics including the Russia-Ukraine War, Section 230, and the coming midterm elections. Participants included a dozen luminaries from politics, media, business and religion. Pictured at right: Harrison (l), former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee (c), and Newsmax radio/TV star Rob Carson (r). Duncan (author of the radio classic Yappy Days: Behind the Scenes with Newsers, Schmoozers, Boozers and Losers) is shown at left snapping a photo of the former president with Carson. Harrison stated, “It was fascinating seeing Donald Trump in his ‘home’ environment. He seemed extremely relaxed, informal, healthy and happy. We all got a big kick out of hearing him perform as a DJ in which he presented a variety of artists including Elvis Presley and Andrea Bocelli.” Trump mentioned that he thinks Rob Carson is one of the “funniest performers on radio and television today.” Harrison – known for playing his political cards close to the vest – was overheard telling the former president, “Sir, I must tell you… this is the best friggin’ piece of chicken I’ve eaten in years.”
Bob & Tom Show Performs Live at Cincinnati Hard Rock Casino for Reds Home Opener. Pictured above is the cast of “The Bob & Tom Show” on Tuesday (4/12) as it performs its nationally syndicated morning drive program live from the Hard Rock Cafe in Cincinnati’s Hard Rock Casino to celebrate the home opener of MLB’s Cincinnati Reds. Host Tom Griswold and the ensemble cast welcomed a live audience of 250, along with special guests Duke Tumatoe & The Power Trio, and comics Donnie Baker and Drew Hastings.
iHeartMedia’s ‘97.3 The Game’ Milwaukee Renews Steve Czaban for Mornings. Sports talk personality Steve Czaban and iHeartMedia’s Milwaukee sports talk WRNW-FM “97.3 The Game” announce a multi-year broadcast agreement extension to keep Czaban hosting the morning drive show. The station says that Czaban – who’s hosted nationally syndicated programming during his career in addition to his history in the Milwaukee market – joined “97.3 The Game” in May of 2019 and quickly became the most listened to sports talk show in Milwaukee. Czaban says, “What we are building at ‘The Game’ is incredible to watch, and not just in Milwaukee, but across Wisconsin. Sports talk radio that is entertaining, regardless of the season, and with a true Wisconsin flair. I’m looking forward to continuing to build upon our success in the market for years to come!” WRNW program director Tim Scott comments, “Continuing to work every day with a true legend of the format is pretty cool. Add in our all-star line up alongside Czabe, and I’d say this is going to be a really fun ride.”
KRMG, Tulsa Covers Oklahoma Warriors Honor Flight. On Tuesday (4/12), Cox Media Group’s news/talk KRMG-FM, Tulsa and several of its staffers accompanied area veterans on a one-day trip to Washington, DC to see the memorials constructed in their honor. The Oklahoma Warriors Honor Flight is part of a nationwide, non-profit organization dedicated to bringing veterans to visit the memorials. Tuesday’s flight included 189 veterans from World War II and the Korean and Vietnam Wars. Joining them were KRMG-FM anchor reporter Russell Mills and sister country station KWEN-FM’s Matt Bradley. KRMG-FM director of branding & programming Levi May says, “KRMG is proud to walk alongside these Oklahoma veterans and honor their service by sharing their stories during this trip. We want to help raise awareness and money for this organization so they can fly another group of veterans to Washington DC this October.”
TALKERS News Notes. Chicago media writer Robert Feder reports that Good Karma Brands promotes KMVP-AM, Chicago “ESPN 1000” part-time board op and producer Tyler Aki to full-time producer for the afternoon drive “Waddle & Silvy” show hosted by Tom Waddle and Marc Silverman. At the same time, the station brings former iHeartMedia and Audacy BetQL Radio Network producer Shea Norling aboard to serve as producer for the late morning program hosted by David Kaplan and Jonathan Hood. Station director of content Danny Zederman says, “Both Tyler and Shea have track records of producing original and compelling content. They are strong additions to our content team, and I look forward to a bright future with them.”…..PodcastOne announces that the wellness podcast “The Dr. Gundry Podcast” releases its 200th episode. PodcastOne says the milestone episode features interviews with esteemed motivational speaker Tony Robbins and leading entrepreneur Peter Diamandis. PodcastOne president Kit Gray states, “We’re proud to be the network that brings ‘The Dr. Gundry Podcast’ to audiences each week. His episodes are informational, enlightening, and quite literally life changing. Cheers to 200 wonderful episodes and we’re looking forward to the next 200.”…..The newly launched College Athletes Network, founded by Ron Pivo and Brett Martzke, announces its new partnership with iHeartMedia to launch a new college sports centered podcast slate hosted by the athletes themselves. Listeners will hear directly from the athletes and their guests on what life is like in the world of big-time college sports and share unique insights that will take listeners behind the curtain at a variety of schools. The first show, “WalkieTalkieZ,” is hosted by Noah Buono, a walk-on basketball player at Duquesne University. His podcast discusses walk-ons from a variety of major sports programs across the country. He says, “After five incredible years of being a college basketball walk-on, I can confidently tell you that every walk-on has their own inspiring journey to tell. I’m super grateful and excited that ‘WalkieTalkieZ’ now has a national platform to help share these incredible stories and I look forward to the continued growth of this podcast through the College Athletes Network and its collaboration with iHeartMedia to reach massive audiences.”
Russia-Ukraine War, Biden Approval Ratings, the Economy/Inflation, NY Subway Shooter/Urban Violence, Hunter Biden Investigation, Midterms/Trump & the GOP, Immigration/Border Issues, January 6 Committee, and Elon Musk & Twitter Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (4/13). Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine and allegations of war crimes; President Joe Biden’s approval ratings hit a low of 33% in the latest Quinnipiac University survey; the high price of gas & food and concerns about a recession; the arrest of the NYC subway shooting suspect and the larger problem of rampant violence in America’s urban centers; the DOJ’s investigation into Hunter Biden’s international business ventures; the battle for control of Congress in November’s midterm elections and Donald Trump’s influence over the GOP; the illegal migrant problems at the U.S.-Mexico border and the transportation of migrants from Texas to Washington, DC; the ongoing investigation into the January 6 Capitol attack and the prosecution of those arrested there; and Elon Musk offers to buy Twitter and take it private were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.
Mary Walter Joins WMAL-AM/FM, Washington’s ‘Mornings On The Mall.’ Radio pro Mary Walter is named the co-host of the “Mornings On The Mall” program on Cumulus Media’s news/talk WMAL-AM/FM, Washington. Walter is working with co-host Brian Wilson. She takes over for Larry O’Connor, who recently moved to the afternoon drive daypart. Walter was most recently with iHeartMedia’s WHAS, Louisville, hosting the evening program. She’s been a frequent guest host on WMAL in addition to guest host stints on FOX News Radio and SiriusXM’s The Patriot channel. WMAL program director Bill Hess comments, “Mary’s experience, energy, and familiarity to our audience made her the perfect addition to our team.”
WTMJ, Milwaukee Announces New Midday Show. The new midday show at E.W. Scripps’ WTMJ, Milwaukee is being unveiled. The station moved Jeff Wagner to the late morning slot that opened up with the retirement of Charlie Sykes at the end of last year. Now, taking over the 12:00 noon to 3:00 pm slot is the “Scaffidi & Bilstad” show with Steve Scaffidi (center) and executive producer Erik Bilstad (left). Scaffidi was most recently mayor of suburban Oak Creek and an account executive at the Leonard & Finco Public Relations firm. He’s resigned from both posts to join WTMJ. Station VP/GM Tom Langmyer states, “We’re pleased to welcome Steve to our team. He brings a great depth of knowledge and local connection to add to his take on the news of the day. Steve is a Wisconsin native, has a deep background and so much life experience, beyond broadcasting.” News anchor and reporter Colleen Boland (right) will man the newsroom during the program. The show debuts on February 28.
ABC News Radio Makes Staffing Changes; Gearing Towards Covering Breaking News. An ABC News Radio spokesperson tells TALKERS magazine that the news organization is making staffing changes that signal a shift from putting its primary resources into newscasts and focusing more intently on the coverage of breaking news, “reflecting immediacy and producing additional program content” for their approximately 1,575 affiliates. ABC News Radio says it has parted ways with a handful of employees but is in the process of hiring for a number of positions that will exceed those eliminated. Those include: Affiliate Solutions Manager, Associate Producer, Country Reporter/Producer, Urban Reporter/Producer, and WGA Newswriter/Producer. An ABC News Radio spokesperson tells TALKERS, “These changes allow ABC News Radio to provide more two-ways, breaking news and anchored coverage which have become more important to stations. It is never easy when fellow employees leave and we wish the very best to these colleagues. The media landscape is always evolving and it’s critical we’re meeting stations’ needs every step of the way.”
Erik Kuselias to Host Daily Talk Show on Genesis Communications Florida Talk Stations. Known primarily for his work in the sports media business, Erik Kuselias is expanding his reach in Florida by hosting a daily, two-hour talk show on Genesis Communications-owned news/talk outlets WWBA, Tampa and WIXC, Titusville (on the Space Coast). Kuselias – a former ESPN and NBC Sports personality – currently hosts a morning drive sports talk show on the company’s sports talk duo WHBO, Tampa and WHOO, Orlando. He’s continuing in that role in addition to the new program that airs from 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm. WWBA program manager Tom Paleveda states, “This is a natural progression for EK. We launched EK on the sports stations in both Tampa and Orlando last year. He is incredibly talented and will produce one of talk radio’s best programs. He will also continue to provide his brand of content on the company digital platforms, ‘News Talk Florida’ and ‘Sports Talk Florida.’”
Bubba the Love Sponge Files New Counterclaim Against Nielsen. The first time Bubba the Love Sponge filed a counterclaim against Nielsen, the court denied the motion ruling that it was difficult to discern the relevant facts due to the heavily redacted documents supplied by plaintiff Nielsen. That counterclaim included third parties Cox Media Group and CMG employee (and WHPT, Tampa personality) Mike Calta. But the denial was without prejudice, allowing Bubba’s lawyers to try again. And he has, this time leaving Cox and Calta out of the counterclaim. The counterclaim still alleges Nielsen entered into a conspiracy with Cox Media Group to get Bubba off the air in Tampa and interfere with his ability to do business with Beasley Media Group (owner of Tampa affiliate WBRN). The specific counterclaims are: Tortious Interference with Contractual and Business Relationships, Violation of the Florida Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices Act, and Civil Conspiracy.
KFYO, Lubbock, Texas Names Dave King & Matt Martin Morning Hosts. Friday (2/17) was the last day for the “First News with Tom Collins and Laura Mac” on Townsquare Media’s news/talk KFYO, Lubbock, Texas. Assuming the morning show role are Dave King (right) and Matt Martin (left). The station says, “Both Dave and Matt are easy going, view the world from a conservative viewpoint, and want to interact with KFYO listeners. King is owner of Dave King Advertising in Lubbock. Matt Martin is a realtor with The Wyatt Team at Keller Williams.
Neuhoff Ups Byerly to DOS and Associate GM for Decatur Station Group. Moving up from her general sales manager position at Neuhoff Communications’ Decatur, Illinois cluster is Kathy Byerly. She’s now director of sales and associate general manager for the group that includes news/talk WSOY, sports talk WDZ, hip hop WCZQ “HOT 105.5,” CHR WSOY-FM “Y103,” and country WDZQ “95Q.” Neuhoff COO Mike Hulvey states, “Kathy is a wonderful success story. She has grown a career from the front desk to market leadership. You can’t get much better than that. The group of Decatur stations and digital products are not only the market leaders, they also have been recognized among the best in the industry. Kathy will help support those traditions while driving more business to our advertising partners.”
Hanging Out at the Club. Nationally syndicated Westwood One talk host Michael Savage and his son, Rockstar energy drink founder Russ Weiner, crossed paths with President Donald Trump at the chief executive’s famous Palm Beach, Florida private club, Mar-a-Lago, this weekend. They were attending a dinner hosted by Newsmax CEO Christopher Ruddy when the president stopped by to say hello. Pictured (l-r): Ruddy, Trump, Savage, and Weiner.
Limbaugh-Touted Book Debuts at #6 on NYT Bestseller List. The latest book by conservative writer David Horowitz – Big Agenda: President Trump’s Plan to Save America – debuted on the New York Times Bestseller list at #6 in the hardcover nonfiction books and e-book/hardcover nonfiction categories. Newsmax reports that the book was released the week of President Trump’s inauguration and is being praised by Rush Limbaugh, among other conservative media figures, for its predictions about Trump’s agenda. Horowitz is founder of the David Horowitz Freedom Center.
New Trump Travel Order, McMaster Named National Security Advisor, Trump’s Sweden Comment, McCain vs Trump, UK’s Anti-Trump Debate, Uber Sexual Harassment Scandal, Yiannopoulos Controversies, and NBA-NHL Action Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (2/20). The Trump Administration issues new travel order exempting green card holders; President Donald Trump names Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster national security advisor; the controversy over Trump’s allusion to crime in Sweden and filmmaker Ami Horowitz’s allegations that violent crime there has spiked due to immigrants; Republican Senator John McCain’s role as a major critic of Trump’s policies; the British House of Commons debates denying President Trump’s state visit; the allegations of sexual harassment at Uber’s corporate headquarters and the company’s hiring former AG Eric Holder to investigate; the controversies surrounding media figure Milo Yiannopoulos, including his being uninvited to CPAC and Simon and Schuster refusing to release his book; and NBA and NHL action were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.
TALKERS News Notes. Phoenix market broadcast legend Pat McMahon is being roasted on March 15 at local comedy club Stand Up Live in an event being organized by Bonneville news/talk outlet KTAR-FM. The “Tip of the Hat to Pat” roast is being hosted by KNIX personality Tim Hattrick and will feature rock legend Alice Cooper, as well as local celebrities Jude LaCava from Fox 10, John Holmberg from KUPD, authors Jana Bommersbach and Rita Davenport and former ADL director Bill Straus. McMahon says, “I’m feeling both honored and terrified at the prospect of this event. But you can be sure that I’ll be able to dish it out, just as well as I can take it.”…..New York Mets flagship station WOR, New York announces it will air play-by-play for 15 spring training games, beginning on February 24 when the Mets take on the Boston Red Sox…..The New York Times recently published a feature story about Premiere Networks host George Noory. In the piece, the “Coast to Coast AM” host discusses how “Coast to Coast AM” has evolved over the years, his open approach to stories and topics, and his relationship with his audience. Read the story here.
Music Radio News and Career Moves. At the Atlanta cluster of Cox Media Group, Jaleigh Long is promoted to director of sales. She moves up from her general sales manager role. She’ll oversee the sales efforts for news/talk WSB-AM/WSBB-FM, CHR WSB-FM “B98.5,” classic hits WSRV “97.1 The River,” urban contemporary WALR “Kiss 104.1 FM,” and country simulcast WNGC/WTSH “Your Georgia Country.”…..At Mid-West Family Broadcasting’s rock WXRX, Rockford, Illinois “104.9 The X,” Zander – who’s been morning host and PD since joining the station in August of last year – moves to the afternoon drive slot. At the same time, Lori joins the station from crosstown competitor WKGL “96.7 The Eagle.”…..In the Lexington, Kentucky market, iHeartMedia drops sports talk on the simulcast of WWTF-AM and translator W239DJ at 97.7 FM and flips it to rock as “WTF 97.7 Lexington’s Rock Alternative.” Air personalities include Aly, Big Rig, Audrey, and Shroom…..Binnie Media says good bye to classic music on its WBQX, Thomaston, Maine and translator W245AA, Portland at 96.9 FM. WBQX takes on the classic hits format “FRANK FM” while the translator is simulcasting country station WTHT, Auburn “99.9 The Wolf.”
iHeartRadio Music Awards Announces Best New Artist Nominees. When the 2017 iHeartRadio Music Awards take place on Sunday, March 5 at the Forum in Los Angeles, one of the awards to be given will be the Best New Artist. The ultimate winner will be chosen by fans from all categories of popular music. The first step was naming the nominees in each category. Now, the finalists have been named. They are: Best New Rock/Alternative Rock Artist: The Strumbellas; Best New Country Artist: Kelsea Ballerini; Best New Hip-Hop Artist: Chance the Rapper; Best New Latin Artist: CNCO; Best New Regional Mexican Artist: Joss Favela; Best New Pop Artist: The Chainsmokers; and Best New R&B Artist: Bryson Tiller. The awards show will be televised live on TBS, TNT and truTV at 8:00 pm ET and simulcast on iHeartMedia radio stations nationwide, as well as on iHeartRadio.