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Friday, August 14, 2020

| August 14, 2020

Pandemic-Related Layoffs At KQED. Twenty staff members at KQED Inc. San Francisco public radio news/talk KQED-FM and PBS affiliate KQED-TV have become layoff victims, owing to the coronavirus pandemic. That represents more than 5% of KQED’s workforce. Among those known to be affected are a full-time limited term journalist and two temporary members of the science team. In a communication to staffers, president/chief executive officer Michael Isip notes that some employees are having their hours reduced and those in leadership roles are taking a 12% slash in pay. Furthermore, “non-essential” staffers will be required to take four-day furloughs at the very end of this year and immediately after July 4th (in 2021). As of October 1, KQED will drop its employer match of 403(b) contributions; there won’t be any salary increases the rest of this calendar year. Laid-off employees though are welcome to apply for any future openings. Among persons 6+ in Nielsen Audio’s July 2020 sweep, KQED-FM ranks second in San Francisco (7.4, 6+) and second, as well, in San Jose (6.6, 6+).

NOW POSTED:  This Weekend’s Installment of “The Michael Harrison Wrap: An Overview of the National Conversation.”   The latest installment of the vibrant, one-hour weekend special, “The Michael Harrison Wrap,” that looks back each week at the hottest topics discussed in American talk media per the research of TALKERS magazine, is now posted on the website of its flagship station, WONK-FM in Washington, DC.  This new episode titled “Momala Kamala!” looks back at this past week of August 10-14, 2020.  The program features guests (in order of appearance): Kevin Casey, executive editor, TALKERSErick Erickson, talk show host, WSB, Atlanta / independent Georgia statewide network; Michael Medved, talk show host, KTTH, Seattle / CRN Digital Talk Radio Network; Pat McCrory, talk show host, WBT, Charlotte / former Governor of North Carolina; Steve Weisman, founder, Scamicide.com / law professor, Bentley University; and Victoria Jones, executive director, DC Radio Company. This acclaimed news/talk radio show airs each week on its flagship, WONK-FM, Washington, DC, Friday evenings at 6:00 pm ET. It also airs throughout the weekend on WRKO, Boston; WTIC, Hartford; KSCO, Santa Cruz, CA; KDFD (“Freedom 93.7”), Denver; KFNX, Phoenix; WVLY, Wheeling, WV; WTRW-FM, Scranton/Wilkes Barre, PA; WVOX, Westchester, NY; KBDT, Dallas; KQSP, Minneapolis; KBKW, Aberdeen, WA; WGDJ, Albany, NY;  WJFN-FM, Richmond, VA; WZFG, Fargo; KTGO, Tioga, ND; KWAM, Memphis; K-NEWS, San Luis Obispo; WCHM, Clarkesville, GA;  WPHM, Port Huron, MI; KSYL, Alexandria, LA; KTOE, Mankato, MN; WCED (“Connect FM”), DuBois, PA; K-NEWS 101.3, Owensboro, KY; the Virginia Talk Radio NetworkPioneer Valley Radio in Springfield, MA; Podcast Radio, UK and many more.  To listen to this week ’s episode, please click here.  To view the latest TALKERS magazine topic research, please click here.  “The Michael Harrison Wrap” is now available in syndication via Talk Media Network to stations across America on a market exclusive basis. For affiliation information, please click here or call 616-884-8616.

Entercom, Good Karma Brands, Browns Extend Partnership. As part of the deal between Entercom Cleveland and the NFL’s Browns, sports talk WKRK “92.3 The Fan” and co-owned WNCX “98.5 Cleveland’s Classic Rock” will continue serving as FM radio flagships of the 26-station University Hospitals Cleveland Browns Radio Network. They have been in that capacity since 2013. The team’s AM key station is Good Karma Brands’ sports talk WKNR “850 ESPN Cleveland.” Entercom Cleveland senior vice president/market manager Tom Herschel comments, “With football season right around the corner, we’re excited to continue delivering premier coverage of the Browns to Cleveland’s biggest sports fans on two of our market-leading stations. We value our long-standing partnership with the Cleveland Browns and look forward to many more seasons as the flagship radio stations of the team.” Good Karma Brands vice president and Cleveland market manager Sam Pines states, “We are thrilled to extend our partnership with the Cleveland Browns and Entercom. The power of live sports, particularly Cleveland Browns football, is baked into the fabric of the city and ‘850 ESPN Cleveland.’ We look forward to supporting and being a partner of the Browns in the years ahead.” Cleveland Browns executive vice president and chief operating officer Dave Jenkins notes, “Through our partnership with Entercom and Good Karma Brands, we have incredible opportunities and resources to consistently provide our fans with compelling radio programming on game days and throughout the year. We greatly appreciate the efforts of Entercom and Good Karma Brands to bring our fans even closer to our players, coaches, and entire team. We are excited to continue to produce these shows with them in the years to come.” Over and above gameday coverage, WKRK morning show talent Ken Carman and former NFL player Je’Rod Cherry host a one-hour (7:00 pm – 8:00 pm) Wednesday night “Cleveland Browns Preview Show.” In addition, Browns senior media broadcaster Nathan Zegura and Beau Bishop will chat with Browns head coach Kevin Stefanski on “The Kevin Stefanski Show,” each Thursday evening (7:00 pm – 8:00 pm).

PPM Analysis: The News Format. In the first of a four-part series of extensive recaps of the July 2020 survey period, TALKERS managing editor Mike Kinosian highlights the performance of the all-news format. Right off the bat, there is a bit of a statistical oddity: Precisely mirroring June’s stats, 50% of stations in our sample experience month-to-month erosion; 44% improve; and 6% remain steady. While the percentages are identical in back-to-back sweeps, there were only a few duplications by station. Specifically, only iHeartMedia Boston news-talk hybrid WBZ-AM (+.7 and +.1, 6+) and Sinclair Broadcast Group Seattle’s KOMO (+.2 and +.3, 6+) notch increases both times. Regressing in June and July are Entercom-owned WINS in both New York (-.7 and -.4, 6+) and Long Island (-.1 and -.2, 6+); co-owned business news WDCH (Baltimore report, -.3 both times, 6+); and KCBS-AM (San Jose sweep, -.2 and -.9, 6+). A whopping 81% of all-news stations post July 2019 – July 2020 growth. Gaining +2.2 year-to-year are Entercom siblings KCBS-AM, San Francisco (6.1 – 8.3, second to first, 6+) and WBBM-AM/WCFS-FM, Chicago (4.8 – 7.0, fourth to first, 6+). See Mike Kinosian’s entire report here.

Audio Industry’s Unique Opportunity. In a presentation last week to Radio Advertising Bureau members, MediaVillage founder Jack Myers opined that radio broadcasters need to play up their local ties. According to Myers, “Radio has an opportunity to recreate unique marketing opportunities on localism and content and to rebuild its competitive position.” Many in the ad community may not be familiar with audio’s evolving story. The industry is a relatively new space for some of them, as according to The Myers Report data, 62% of media professionals have less than eight years’ industry experience and brand managers spend just 2% of their time on media. “As an industry, we have to take a stand for increasing the importance of media decisions and the medium is the message,” Myers notes. Audio sellers, he suggests, should communicate positive attributes. “At the top of the list is radio and digital audio’s trust and reliability. Audio is a brand-safe environment where companies know exactly where their ads will run and select the content or personalities they’ll be associated with. Radio and audio need to stump for a larger slice of ad budgets and creative spending. To do that, play up all the opportunities that radio can deliver, including both local over-the-air and digital audio, and to reach diverse audiences, including minorities and consumers 55-plus.” Forecasts from The Myers Report are suggesting that this year’s total ad spending will fall between 14% and 20%, compared to 2019 levels. Myers projects the ad market will not begin a meaningful recovery until 2022. Audio is suffering major revenue losses, with year-over-year spending down 20% to 25%. Those declines, however, are in line with local TV, cable, and broadcast networks. As ad markets slowly recover, Myers admonishes radio and audio companies to invest in education within their organizations and externally. “Companies that invest significantly in education and rethink their PR and promotional output in an educational context will be the next generation of leaders.”

TALKERS News Notes. Progressing from swing and weekends at Hearst Radio Baltimore news/talk WBAL “News Radio 1090 & FM 101.5” is Torrey Snow, who takes over afternoon drive duties (2:00 pm – 6:00 pm). WBAL president and general manager Cary Pahigian states, “Torrey’s deep knowledge of Baltimore, Maryland, and his thoughtful viewpoint on the current issues of importance are valuable additions to WBAL. Listeners can expect a spirited examination of topics from all angles, along with late-breaking news, weather and traffic.” Portugal-born/Boise, Idaho-raised Snow relocated to Maryland 14 years ago. The president of the Frederick Douglass Foundation of Maryland, Snow was named Anne Arundel County’s “Republican Man of the Year” in 2018. He was appointed to the Maryland Commission of African-American History and Culture and makes his WBAL PM drive debut today (Friday, 8/14) … Given that the coronavirus wiped up this year’s “March Madness,” Fox Sports Radio is countering with a “Basketball Bracket Challenge” focused on the NBA playoffs. The challenge debuts tonight (Friday, 8/14) after the final regular-season game between the Philadelphia 76ers and Houston Rockets. Listeners will compete against each other, as well as against FSR’s Colin Cowherd, Clay Travis, Doug Gottlieb, Chris Broussard, Rob Parker, R.J. Bell, Jason Smith, Mike Harmon, and Ben Maller. Up for grabs is the chance to win a Westinghouse 50” Roku TV. Fox Sports Radio vice president of sports programming Scott Shapiro declares, “We all have bracket envy since the tournament was robbed from us in March. So we thought why not give sports fans what they want – a way to compete against our hosts and fellow listeners in a basketball bracket.” Brackets must be submitted prior to tipoff of the first playoff game (next Monday, 8/17) at 12:59 pm (ET).

Kamala Harris/Mail-in Ballots/School Opening Challenges are the Top News/Talk Stories for this past week of August 10-14.   The Talkers TenTM is a weekly chart of the top 10 stories and people discussed on news/talk radio during the week and is the result of ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.  It is published every Friday at Talkers.com.  See this week’s entire chart here.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. Following a 28-year run at WHBC-FM “Mix 94.1,” Kayleigh Kriss exits the Alpha Media Canton (Ohio) hot AC – victim of coronavirus-related cutbacks. Alpha Media Canton general manager Larry Gawthrop comments, “While the effects of COVID-19 created some tough decisions for us, one thing is for certain: Kayleigh Kriss will forever be part of the legacy of WHBC-FM. For 28 years, she endured multiple owners, managers and musical directions; she played just about every song ever recorded. Kayleigh is a true professional and I have no doubt her career will continue to be a success no matter which side of the mic she’s on.” Kriss began in the station’s promotion department in 1992 and became a member of the on-air staff in 1997. She was furloughed four months ago and was officially let go earlier this month … Former director of sales/general sales manager for Radio One Charlotte, Michael Taylor, is named general manager /sales manager for cross-town Core Radio Group urban contemporary WGIV “Streetz 103.3 & 100.5.” Core Radio Group president/chief executive officer Steve Hegwood comments, “I am extremely pleased to have Michael Taylor lead our Charlotte team to victory. He brings the experience, relationships, and successful proven track record to our company.” Taylor notes, “I have been watching and paying attention to the growth of Core Radio Group and the ‘Streetz’ brand for many years. I am extremely impressed with their perseverance and success. Steve Hegwood is focused and determined – I am honored to join his team.” Taylor’s background includes account manager stops in Philadelphia (WPHI); Raleigh (WZZU and WQOK); and Charlotte (WPEG) … Tonight at 9:00 pm (Friday, 8/14), iHeartMedia Philadelphia CHR WIOQ “Q-102 Philly’s #1 Hit Music Station” and Verge Aero join forces to announce the annual “Q-102 102 Grand in the Sand” presented by Acme. “Q-102” listeners are encouraged to continue practicing social distancing while watching the drone light show from their windows and rooftops. The show will be live-streamed on WIOQ’s Instagram Live. In addition, the drone light show’s musical soundtrack will be broadcast live and synced on the station. To prevent gathering of any kind, the exact location of the drone light show will not be released to the public … Six-year Townsquare Media Albany (New York) operations manager Steve Richards exits. In addition to his OM duties, Richards was brand manager for adult contemporary WPBZ “103.9 The Breeze”; alternative WQSH “Alt 103.5”; and classic rock WQBK “Q-105.7.”

Monday, August 10, 2020

| August 10, 2020

Monday Memo: Say It Shorter. In this week’s concise column, consultant Holland Cooke barely says ANYTHING, “and that’s the point.” Read it here.

The Presidential Race, Biden VP Choice Speculation, Vote-By-Mail Debate, and Stimulus Exec Orders Top News/Talk Stories Over the Weekend (8/8-9). The November presidential election, speculation over Joe Biden’s pending VP selection, the failure of Congress to arrive at a new stimulus package with President Trump responding by signing contestable executive orders to move the process along  as well as the controversy over his ongoing allegation that voting by mail encourages voter fraud were the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio this weekend according to TALKERS research of the most talked about topics on issues-oriented news/talk radio. Other heavily discussed topics over the weekend included the school closing debate and COVID-19 stats and projections.

Pending Business: Talk to the Winners. Sales and marketing consultant Steve Lapa, president of Lapcom Communications, writes about how radio sales professionals should have faith in the resilience of local, small business based on the premise that many WILL survive the COVID-19 era.  He suggests that radio sellers seek out those whose innovation clearly has them on a winning track and talk directly to them, customizing campaigns that are in sync with their efforts. Read it here.

Update: WAMU-FM Sexual Harassment. As we reported here last week (TALKERS, 8/5), American University-owned public news/talk outlet WAMU-FM, Washington, DC is in a state of chaos over sexual harassment allegations. WAMU-owned publication DCist ran a Rachel Kurzius-written story detailing allegations of harassment and improper behavior by former WAMU-FM reporter Martin Di Caro. Numerous employees were asking for station general manager J.J. Yore to resign, something he said he was not prepared to do. That situation changed, however, late last week as the station’s six-year general manager has indeed stepped down. Vice president of people and external affairs/chief of staff Seth Grossman states, “American University thanks JJ for his years of service to WAMU; we wish him well as he pursues his next endeavor. We are announcing a series of critical steps designed to address issues in the areas of diversity, equity, inclusion, human resources, and management, as well as how matters of misconduct are handled at WAMU. These actions are a combination of immediate and longer-term steps to accelerate WAMU’s work to enhance culture and workplace. The changes will provide important support to the WAMU staff, who we thank for continuing to focus on producing award-winning journalism that the Washington, DC region relies on amid this period of change. We believe these actions will offer support for the entire WAMU team and provide a foundation for the station’s next chapter.” An interim general manager will be named in “the next four to six weeks.” In addition, a human resources employee relations consultant with “proven experience in improving organizational culture and creating inclusive workplaces” will be put in-place. Interim chief content officer Monna Kashfi becomes the permanent chief content officer, overseeing WAMU and DCist. WAMU’s former chief content officer, Andi McDaniel, left the station last month to join Chicago Public Media’s WBEZ-FM, Chicago as president and chief executive officer; McDaniel begins those duties next month. As indicated in the The DCist piece, McDaniel was well aware of Di Caro’s behavior, having signed off on a “Level III Final Written Warning for Serious Misconduct” given to Di Caro after “almost two years” of complaints.

Coronavirus Affects Cumulus’ Q2 Numbers. Second quarter figures for Cumulus Media include a 47.8% year-to-year revenue decrease to $146 million. The company witnessed its net income transition from a gain of $42.9 million to a loss of $6.4 million and adjusted EBITDA dropping from $61.8 million to -$6.4 million. Despite the pandemic’s material impact on revenue, Cumulus Media president/chief executive officer Mary G. Berner explains, “The company generated over $90 million of cash in the quarter through quick and decisive expense actions, strong working capital management, and the completion of sale of land in Bethesda, Maryland. Ending the quarter with nearly $200 million of cash, we have entered into an agreement to monetize our tower portfolio for more than $210 million, proceeds which will further add to our liquidity and contribute to significant incremental debt paydown.” She adds, “Our demonstrated ability to rise to a challenge, strong liquidity position, and resilient balance sheet are critical assets as we operate through this uncertain environment. We believe we remain very well-positioned to drive long-term shareholder value through continued aggressive debt reduction and the execution of our growth initiatives.” Broadcast station revenue was down 51.6% to $114.2 million. Spot revenue was off 55.6% and network revenue declined by 42.7%. Meanwhile, digital revenue was up .7% to $20.3 million.

COVID-19 “Impacts” Townsquare Q2 Results. Commenting on selected results for the second quarter that ended June 30th, Townsquare Media chief executive officer Bill Wilson remarks that, as expected, the company’s “second quarter financial results were significantly impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.” Net revenue and Adjusted EBITDA declined 34.5% and 93.1%, respectively, as compared to the prior year. Advertising net revenue throughout the quarter, however, “experienced sequential improvement,” Wilson reports. “Together with our Live Events, net revenue has experienced the brunt of the negative business impact.” To Wilson’s point, one second quarter highlight is that, compared to the second quarter of 2019, Live Events net revenue decreased 99.5%. Wilson observes that by the end of the second quarter, “Advertising net revenue had materially improved, from -42.1% in April to -29.6% in June and continued to show improvement through July and early-August.” Townsquare Interactive added approximately 900 net subscribers, ending the quarter with approximately 20,750 subscribers, with Wilson commenting, “Townsquare Interactive’s growth continued in the second quarter, with net revenue increasing 10.5%, at an Adjusted Operating Income margin in excess of 30%, marking the ninth consecutive quarter of 850 (or more) net subscriber additions. During this pandemic, the Townsquare Interactive team became a tremendous resource for their local clients by strengthening online presence and capabilities and powering their online communication strategy. Our thesis has always been, that Townsquare Interactive is a recession-resistant subscription business and will continue to grow its revenue and subscriber base throughout the year.” Wilson explains that Townsquare Media “enacted approximately $1.7 million of monthly fixed cost savings during the second quarter, in addition to the reduction of variable costs related to the decline in revenue, which led to total direct operating expenses declining 14.8%, compared to the prior year. In addition, we have reduced our planned capital expenditures, which declined 30% in the second quarter compared to the prior year. Our board of directors elected to cease paying our quarterly dividend moving forward. Even with all the challenges and unknowns during this pandemic, we have not had to alter our core strategy. Instead, the pandemic placed a spotlight on the need to double-down on executing our existing long term strategy. We believe our ‘Local First’ strategy, together with our talented team and diversified and differentiated product offering, ensures that Townsquare will emerge from this crisis well-positioned for the future. Although a very tough Q2, we believe our revenue, profit and cash flow results will be among the best in the radio – as well as in the local media – industry.” 

Why Are “You” Voting? That’s the simple question iHeartMedia is putting forth to listeners, cultural influencers, athletes, and musicians. It’s in advance of the November election, of course, when – in addition to the presidential contest – Americans will be voting for 35 Senate seats and all 435 House of Representative seats. Soundbites start today (Monday, 8/10) and run until Election Day (11/3). President of iHeartMedia entertainment enterprises John Sykes states, “With voter turnout expected to hit record numbers, ‘Why I’m Voting’ presents a rare opportunity for people of all backgrounds and beliefs to have their voices heard by millions of their fellow Americans before we cast our votes.” Listeners can record/submit their own 20 second or less audio or video message. Meanwhile, also debuting today (8/10) and running through Election Day is iHeartMedia’s longer-form “Why I’m Voting” podcast, which will feature conversations with a wide-range of celebrities on why/how this year’s election will shape our future. The podcast will showcase personal stories behind why voting means so much for our nation. The “Why Are You Voting” series of soundbites will air on iHeartMedia’s 850+ broadcast radio stations in 160 markets, podcasts, social media platforms, and the iHeartRadio app.

Podcast Ad Spending to Surpass $1 Billion Next Year. That forecast further predicts that more than one in five digital radio ad dollars will go toward podcasts. By the end of this year, podcast ad spending in the United States will reach $782 million, up 10.4% from last year, giving it a 21% share of the US digital radio ad market. Spending is expected to jump nearly 45% next year to $1.13 billion. Insider Intelligence eMarketer forecasting director  Shelleen Shum comments, “Growth in podcast advertising spend will be more resilient this year relative to digital radio advertising as a whole, which will see double-digit declines. The continued growth in podcast advertising is no surprise, as investments have made podcasts accessible to a wider audience. The news genre, a focus of many podcast advertisers, has performed well during the pandemic. While some ad campaigns were paused due to the uncertainty from COVID-19 lockdowns, we expect a rebound in Q3 and Q4. One key challenge in podcast advertising is the lack of uniformity in measurement. [The Interactive Advertising Bureau] has released a set of guidelines to establish a common set of ad metrics for podcasts, which should bring some standardization to the industry and give advertisers more confidence.” This year, 105.6 million people in the US will listen to podcasts, the first time podcast listening will surpass 100 million.

KYW Silences Familiar Sound. Owing to pandemic-related budget cuts, a number of well-known voices on spoken-word and music-intensive formats across the country have been eased off the air. A longtime fixture at Entercom Philadelphia’s KYW “News Radio 1060” is gone, but it had nothing to do with the bottom line or COVID-19 – and it isn’t a human. The station has eliminated the teletype sound effect that – for decades – has been played underneath its news broadcasts. With tongue planted firmly in cheek, KYW program director/brand manager Alex Silverman remarks to The Philadelphia Inquirer, “They stopped making the ribbons for the trusty teletype in 1986 and our supply finally ran out; so, old reliable is out of commission until further notice.” To that, co-owned WIP “Sports Radio 94” brand manager Spike Eskin mocks in a tweet, “Just excuses again from Alex Silverman. Are we to believe he couldn’t find a new one on Ebay, or simulate the sound somehow? Does he think we are fools?” On a more serious note, Silverman states, “As technology has evolved over the years, so has KYW. The sound of the station should reflect the modern, nimble, multi-platform news organization we’ve become.”  KYW has recently updated its jingle and logo. Entercom’s other top ten market news and news-talk hybrids include: WCBS-AM and WINS, New York City; KNX, Los Angeles; WBBM-AM & WCFS-FM, Chicago; KCBS-AM, San Francisco; and KRLD-AM, Dallas.

Leadership Training Program Accepting 2021 Applications. Designed to prepare senior-level broadcasters to advance into ownership or executive positions, the NAB’s Broadcast Leadership Training (BLT) program is accepting applications through August 19 for next year’s session. BLT program founder and dean/ ShootingStar Broadcasting founder, president, chief executive officer Diane Sutter states, “As we transition to a hybrid online and in-person model, we look forward to expanding the reach of the Broadcast Leadership Training program. Now, more than ever, it is imperative that we cultivate the next class of diverse industry leaders and equip them with the knowledge and training to advance their careers.” As it moves into its 21st year, this executive MBA-style program teaches the fundamentals of purchasing, owning, and operating radio and television stations to senior-level broadcast professionals. All education sessions planned through the end of 2020 will be held online, with the starting gathering to be held next month (9/24 – 25). Broadcast professionals from all areas of the industry, including general managers, sales managers and department heads, as well as regional and corporate executives, are encouraged to apply. Fellowship opportunities are available for women and people of color. The complete schedule will be made available in early-October.

TALKERS News Notes. Starting one week from today (Monday, 8/17) and lasting through next Thursday (8/20), ABC News Radio is set to cover this year’s Democratic National Convention and plans to do the same  the following week (8/24 – 27) for the Republican National Convention. Aaron Katersky and Karen Travers will anchor; Alex Stone, Ryan Burrow, and Jim Ryan are slated to serve as reporters; and Steve Roberts joins for analysis. Multiple one-minute “Status Reports” will air each night, as will the network’s daily Brad Mielke-hosted podcast, “Start Here.” Meanwhile, each day during the conventions, the Karl & Klein-hosted podcast “Powerhouse Politics” will release special editions featuring interviews and analysis …  Former iHeartMedia Jacksonville senior vice president of programming Tommy BoDean joins Cumulus Media as operations manager of its four-station Melbourne (Florida) cluster, which includes sports talk WLZR “1560 The Fan.” Cumulus Media regional vice president Pete DeSimone comments, “I am really excited Tommy is joining the Cumulus Melbourne team. He’s going to make an immediate impact – and at a time [when] programming and operational leadership are critical.” BoDean adds, “The world we live in is changing every minute; radio has not just an opportunity, but an obligation, to get plugged in and help. Now is the perfect time to step into a role that both challenges and excites me every day.” In addition to his OM duties for WLZR and classic rock WROK “95.9 The Rocket,” BoDean will be the day-to-day program director for CHR WAOA “107.1 A1A” and country WHKR “102.7 Nash FM.” He previously was operations manager for iHeartMedia Cincinnati and programmed Nashville CHR WNFN “Hot 106.7.” …  Effective today (Monday, 8/10), Bustos Media Tucson’s KVOI “AM 1030 The Voice” adds “The Joe Walsh Show” to its weeknight (7:00 pm – 9:00 pm) lineup and shifts “Our American Stories with Lee Habeeb,” which had been in that slot, to 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm … Twenty-year Spokane television and radio journalist Teresa Lukens will return to Morgan Murphy Media Spokane’s KXLY-AM “920 News Now” next Monday (8/17) as morning drive co-host. After three years as a reporter on KXLY-TV’s “Good Morning Northwest,” Lukens transitioned to radio as morning host on co-owned KXLY-FM “Classy 99.9 FM” and then as news anchor on KXLY-AM. Lukens left KXLY-TV in 2010 and hosted “Health Matters” on Spokane public television outlet KSPS.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. Every Friday this month, iHeartMedia San Antonio joins forces with San Antonio Metro Health for the “Friday Night Virtual Dance Party” (7:00 – 7:30 pm). Participating stations within the iHM cluster include adult contemporary KQXT “Q-101.9”; CHR KXXM “96.1 Now;” country KAJA “KJ-7″; and Spanish contemporary KZEP “104.5 Latino Hits.” According to iHeartMedia San Antonio senior vice president of programming Jason McCollim, “There is nothing like the power of music. [We] are excited to partner with our friends at San Antonio Metro Health for ‘Friday Night Virtual Dance Party’ [and] look forward to raising our community spirit during these challenging times – all while abiding by the state’s safety guidelines to fight the COVID-19 virus.” Mayor Ron Nirenberg notes, “We want to send an encouraging and positive message to San Antonio to keep doing the things that make our city great, but do them in a safe way so we can continue to stop the spread.” …  A country music special hosted by four-time Entertainer of the Year Luke Bryan is among several, three-hour ABC Audio Labor Day weekend specials. “Luke Bryan: Born Here Live Here Die Here” takes listeners through each song on Bryan’s new album, which has produced three #1 singles. “Labor Day Rock Salute: Frontline Edition – From Speakeasy” honors frontline workers who stepped up during COVID-19. Hosted by ABC Audio’s Matt Wolfe, the special features hits from artists including ZZ Top, Alice Cooper, and Stevie Nicks. Top rock artists will also share what they’ve been up to during lockdown. Meanwhile, the Aaron Katersky-hosted  news special “How America Works Now” explores how people are coping through the pandemic. It questions what the future of American life and labor may look like, and puts a spotlight on those adapting to the new normal  … “CMT After MidNite with Cody Alan” takes over 12:00 midnight – 5:00 am duties in Santa Rosa, California on Amaturo Sonoma Media Group-owned KFGY “Froggy 92.9 Today’s Country.” Alan comments, “Our show is excited to be a part of the ‘Froggy 92.9’ lineup. We already feel like part of the ‘Froggy’ family. I can’t wait to get to Sonoma for a visit to wine country.” Amaturo Sonoma Media Group vice president of programming and operations Jim Murphy notes, “Cody creates unique, multiplatform content that really resonates with country fans; we couldn’t be happier to welcome him to the ‘Froggy’ family. The station’s revised lineup includes: Amber & Tanner (5:00 am – 10:00 am); Jenn (10:00 am – 3:00 pm); Dano (3:00 pm – 7:00 pm); Lia (7:00 pm – 12:00 midnight); and “CMT After MidNite with Cody Alan” (12:00 midnight – 5:00 am) … Former four-year wakeup duo at Hubbard Broadcasting St. Louis’ WIL “New Country 92.3, Bud Ford and Jerry Broadway (“Bud & Broadway”), sign with Houston-based SuiteRadio for morning show syndication, gearing up for next month’s start (9/7). The show will be represented on a market exclusive basis by Colbert Media Group. Prior to exiting WIL this past May, “Bud & Broadway” worked in Tulsa and Dothan, Alabama.

Friday, April 24, 2020

| April 24, 2020

NOW POSTED:  New Installment of “The Michael Harrison Wrap: An Overview of the National Conversation.”   The vibrant, one-hour weekend special, “The Michael Harrison Wrap,” that looks back each week at the hottest topics discussed in American talk media per the research of TALKERS magazine, is now posted.  The new episode titled, “Between a Rock and a Hard Place!” looks back at this past week of April 20-24, 2020 and features guests (in order of appearance): Kevin Casey, executive editor, TALKERSDr. Renee Kohanski, forensic psychiatrist / contributor, “Psychcast-MDedge” podcast;  Glenn Beck, talk show host, Premiere NetworksMichael Riedel, talk show host, WOR, New York; and Bob Flaherty, talk show host, WHMP-AM, Northampton, MA. This acclaimed news/talk radio show airs each week on its flagship, WONK-FM, Washington, DC, Friday evenings at 6:00 pm ET. It also airs throughout the weekend on WRKO, Boston; KSCO, Santa Cruz, CA; KDFD, Denver “Freedom 93.7”; KFNX, Phoenix; WVLY, Wheeling, WV; WVOX, Westchester, NY; KBDT, Dallas; KQSP, Minneapolis; KBKW, Aberdeen, WA; WGDJ, Albany, NY;  WJFN-FM, Richmond, VA; WZFG, Fargo; KTGO, Tioga, ND; WPHM, Port Huron, MI; KSYL-AM, Alexandria, LA; the Virginia Talk Radio Network and Pioneer Valley Radio in Springfield, MA.  To listen to this week’s episode (and the program’s complete archives), please click here.  To view the latest TALKERS magazine topic research, please click here.  “The Michael Harrison Wrap” is now available in syndication via Talk Media Network to stations across America on a market exclusive basis. For affiliation information, please click here or call 616-884-8616.

PPM Analysis: All-News. TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian presents a look at the performances of radio stations based on data from Nielsen Audio’s March 2020 PPM survey, today focusing on the all-news format.  For those following how all-news and news/talk stations have fared since the coronavirus pandemic hit the U.S., it won’t be a surprise that every all-news station in the U.S. saw its weekly, 6+ AQH share go up from the February survey. Comparing the March 2020 and February 2020 surveys, Entercom’s WBBM-AM/WCFS-FM, Chicago and KYW, Philadelphia led the gainers with each rising 1.9 shares.  Taking a look at year-over-year data, 67% of all-news stations were up, 22% were down, and 11% remained steady.  While Entercom’s KCBS-AM, San Francisco was the leader here (+3.5 for a 9.9 share and the #1 rank in the market), Sinclair Broadcast Group’s KOMO-AM/FM, Seattle’s 2.3 share increase pushed it from the #15 rank in 2019 to the #3 rank this year.  Despite the ratings jumps, just two all-news outlets ranked #1 in their respective markets in March – WBBM-AM/WCFS-FM, Chicago and KCBS-AM, San Francisco.  See Mike Kinosian’s entire report here.

Michael Banks to Lead Connoisseur’s Frederick, Maryland Duo. It’s a return to the general manager position at news/talk WFMD-AM and country WFRE in Frederick, Maryland for Michael Banks.  He led the duo under iHeartMedia’s Aloha Trust that was created to divest of stations it couldn’t own due to ownership cap regulations. Now, Connoisseur Media puts Banks back in the GM chair.  Connoisseur Media CEO Jeff Warshaw states, “Mike has been the general sales manager of our Long Island operation.  He was a crucial part of our success and today we are excited to promote him into this important position.”  Banks comments, “I’m excited to get back to Frederick.  This is a perfect fit for my family and me.  I look forward to working with a world-class staff and once again becoming a leader in the community.”

RAB’s ‘Business Unusual’ Series Continues on April 29. The RAB announces the next element in its “Business Unusual” initiative – a live video series titled, “Open for Business.”  The RAB says it will bring together broadcasters and advertisers “to discuss proven programs they are leveraging on radio’s platforms during COVID-19.  Each live presentation will feature several broadcasters and/or advertisers sharing success stories in their local markets including marketing promotions, community service programs, and ideas they have executed to drive revenue success for their stations and results for local businesses.”  RAB president and CEO Erica Farber will moderate the event.  Wednesday (4/29, 12:00 noon CT) will be the first live presentation featuring: Darrell Calton, chief executive officer, ILIAD Media Management, LLC; Erik Hellum, chief operations officer, local media, Townsquare Media; Beth Neuhoff, president and CEO, Neuhoff Media; Ron Stone, president and CEO, Adams Radio Group.

Former Affiliate Sales Reps Sue Cumulus Media and Westwood One. In a suit filed in federal court in New Jersey, Michael J. Capozzoli and Lee Napier allege that TM Studios parent Westwood One and company executives Kirk Stirland and William G. Clancy unlawfully discriminated against them based on their age.  Capozzoli was an affiliate relations rep for TM Studios and Napier was a regional manager for affiliate sales.  The allegations state that beginning in 2016, Stirland stated to Capozzoli his desire to “reinvent TM Studios to attract a younger demographic by hiring younger employees in the sales division.  Stirland became obsessed with hiring young sales employees who he perceived to be ‘hip’ and compared Defendants’ sales employees with those of a competitor (Reel World) that employed younger individuals.”  The complaint goes on to allege the two were treated differently with respect to their compensation despite meeting or exceeding sales goals.  They were both terminated in November 2018.  They are seeking back pay, compensatory damages and more.

The Economy and Lives vs Livelihood Top News/Talk Story for Week of April 20-24. The precarious state of the U.S. economy and the question of saving lives versus preserving the livelihoods of American workers was the most-talked-about story on news/talk radio this week, landing atop the Talkers TenTM. At #2 this week was the encroachment on civil liberties tied with the federal government’s relief packages.  Coming in at #3 was the presidential race and politics, followed by the state of the country’s health care system at #4.  The Talkers TenTM is a weekly chart of the top stories and people discussed on news/talk radio during the week and is the result of ongoing research from TALKERS magazine. It is published every Friday at Talkers.com.  See this week’s complete chart here.

TALKERS News Notes. The New York Post’s Andrew Marchand reports on the spat between WFAN, New York’s Mike Francesa and Twitter user Funhouse that uses the handle @BackAftaThis to critique Francesa.  For years @BackAftaThis has posted audio and video of Francesa, but recently Francesa and Entercom warned @BackAftaThis about its policy regarding use of its content that largely forbids it.  Marchand reports that “Francesa reversed course in a tweet Thursday saying it is now going to be OK.”  However, @BackAftaThis tells Marchand, “I have absolutely no plans to resume posting Mike’s clips.  He let me out of jail and I’m not going back willingly unless I’m compensated handsomely for it.”…..iHeartMedia announces that it will present its first quarter 2020 financial report on May 7.  It will also hold an investors conference call on that day.  iHeartMedia is the first media company heavy with radio assets scheduled to announce financial figures from the quarter that ended with the first few weeks of the coronavirus pandemic.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. In San Antonio, Cox Media Group names Joe Pesh the new co-host of the morning show on country KCYY “Y100,” effective May 6.  Pesh will work alongside current AM co-host Beth Chandler.  He was most recently morning personality on Radio One’s CHR WNOW, Indianapolis.  Cox Media Group San Antonio operations manager Jeff Garrison says, “We are very excited to have Joe join the team here in San Antonio!  We can’t wait to see his talent in action – just one minute speaking with Joe, and you know he is committed to his work, passionate about his audiences, and dedicated to doing his very best every day.”…..Alpha Media’s country KUPL, Portland “98.7 The Bull” adds the Premiere Networks-syndicated “Bobby Bones Show” for morning drive.  The program replaces the “Tony, Jake & Jenn” show.  Both Tony Russell and Jake Byron exited the station earlier this month and Jenn Hays moved to host of the midday show.  Bobby Bones says, “I love Portland. I love the people of Portland. Every time I’m in PDX I beg to be put on the air there.  And finally, I get that chance.”…..In West Palm Beach, iHeartMedia unveils a classic hip hop and R&B format on translator W277CX.  The previous country format heard on the signal was fed by WRLX-HD2.  The new station is branded “Throwback 93.3 FM” and features core artists including: Usher, 50 Cent, Kanye West, Mary J. Blige, Jay-Z, Mariah Carey, Eminem, 2Pac and more.  Air personalities include: “The Bushman Show,” Roxy Romeo, Lady Ray, and others…..Educational Media Foundation names Jim Houser to the newly created position of chief content officer.  The Christian music pro will oversee content for the “K-LOVE” and “Air1” radio networks, which currently broadcast on more than 1,000 signals nationwide.  Additionally, Houser will further develop EMF’s streaming strategy, oversee the upcoming podcast platform, all marketing strategy, and the integration of EMF’s digital assets with its programming initiatives…..Local Media San Diego received approval for the new call letters for KFMB-FM.  The adult hits outlet branded “100.7 BIG FM” now carries the calls KFBG-FM.  LMSD acquired the station from Tegna and part of the deal was giving up the KFMB calls that remain associated with Tegna’s KFMB-TV.  LMSD spun KFMB-AM to iHeartMedia in a deal that has not closed yet and that station will also have to change its calls…..Condolences to the family and friends of Southern California disc jockey and voice over pro Jerry Bishop, who passed away on April 21.  Using the stage name Bill Bishop, he worked at KCBQ, San Diego in 1963, moved to Los Angeles in 1965 and worked at such stations as KLAC, KFI, KKDJ, KIIS and KGIL.  He moved into voice-over work and became known for his work on the syndicated “Judge Judy” show.

Thursday, September 5, 2019

| September 5, 2019

Adam Hoge Promoted at WGN; Content Partnership with The Athletic Announced. WGN, Chicago enters into a content partnership with The Athletic that will provide The Athletic subscribers an exclusive, additional podcast from WGN Radio’s Adam Hoge and The Athletic’s Adam Jahns. The “Hoge & Jahns” podcast has been popular with WGN listeners and the addition of the new podcast coincides with Adam Hoge’s promotion to manager of digital sports content for Tribune’s Media’s WGN Radio.  WGN director of marketing & digital innovation Tabitha Green says, “The success of ‘Hoge & Jahns’ is a great example of the innovation Adam will bring to his new role.  His passion for sports and expertise in digital storytelling will take us to a whole new level.”  In this new role, Hoge will oversee online strategies and content created by WGN Radio sports journalists.  Hoge will continue to be the station’s Chicago Bears insider, traveling with the team throughout the season.

Connoisseur Promotes Keith Dakin to VP of Programming. Connecticut-based programmer Keith Dakin has been the regional operations manager for Connoisseur Media. Now, after nine years with the company, Dakin rises to vice president of programming for the entire station group. Connoisseur Media CEO Jeff Warshaw says, “Keith has done a terrific job with our Connecticut stations and has been an extremely valuable resource for Connoisseur.  His ability to work with talent is particularly prized within our company.”  Dakin says, “I am beyond honored to be given a chance to oversee the programming for Connoisseur Media.  Our CEO Jeff Warshaw has assembled a collection of legendary radio stations that I can’t wait to work with. These are huge brands that really connect on a local level and bring unique, interesting and compelling content to our listeners.”  Connoisseur recently acquired news/talk WICC, Bridgeport and AC WEBE, Westport Connecticut, as well as Frederick, Maryland duo news/talk WFMD-AM and country WFRE-FM.

Cumulus Names Eric Mastel to Charleston Market Manager Role; Gigi South to Lead Savannah Station Group. The July passing of Charleston, South Carolina market manager Sherry Dollar put Cumulus Media in the position of searching for her replacement.  Now, the company announces it is moving Eric Mastel from his VP and market manager post in Savannah to the leadership position in Charleston.  The Charleston cluster includes news/talk WTMA-AM and four music outlets.  Cumulus EVP Bob Walker comments, “We are thrilled that Eric will be moving to Charleston to lead our team and our great brands.  He is an accomplished leader and will complement the strong team in Charleston nicely.”  Taking over the cluster management in Savannah is Gigi South, who joins Cumulus Media to serve as vice president and market manager for the six-station group that includes news/talk WBMQ-AM and sports talk WJLG-AM “The Ticket AM900,” as well as four music brands.  South was most recently general manager with Mississippi Broadcasters.  Prior to that, she was vice president of WSCG-TV in Beaufort, South Carolina.  South says, “To say that I am overjoyed to return to the Savannah-Hilton Head market with Cumulus would be an understatement.  A thriving market, a results-focused team, the support and tools available from Cumulus, and our dominant signals are enough to get anyone excited.”

Great Lakes Media Adds Mitch Dolan and Ed Nolan to Leadership Team. The Milwaukee-based firm Great Lakes Media Corp. announces two additions to its leadership team.  Mitch Dolan joins as chief operating officer and Ed Nolan is named chief financial officer.  Dolan was most recently COO of radio & outdoor for Times-Shamrock Communications.  During his career he also served as president of the ABC Radio Station Group and president and general manager of WPLJ-FM, New York.  Nolan was most recently SVP/CFO & treasurer of Greater Media, Inc.  Great Lakes Media CEO Tom Langmyer states, “I’m pleased to welcome two experienced and exceptional leaders to Great Lakes Media.  Mitch is highly respected in the media industry and, whether in New York City, where he operated stations directly, or in the ABC major markets he led across the U.S., his outstanding track-record of achievement was defined by his ability to consistently out-perform the companies and stations with whom he competed.  Ed’s distinguished career is highlighted by his oversight and successful execution of a number of complex M&A transactions while serving on the senior leadership team of one of America’s finest and most-admired media companies.” Great Lakes Media Corp. intends to primarily invest in the acquisition of local radio stations and digital platforms in the U.S., focusing on properties in medium and large markets in the Northeast and Upper Midwest.

Clingerman Appointed Market President for Townsquare’s Wichita Falls Stations. Moving from the television to the radio business is Troy Clingerman, who is named market president and chief revenue officer for Townsquare Media’s Wichita Falls, Texas cluster that includes news/talk KWFS-AM and three music-formatted stations.  Clingerman was most recently local sales manager for Tegna’s KYTX-TV in Tyler, Texas.  Prior to that, he served in the digital sales department at E.W. Scripps’ KJRH-TV, Tulsa.  Clingerman says, “I’m excited to join the Townsquare team in Wichita Falls.  The key to our success will be talented people and all the solutions any small business would ever need, both of which we have in Wichita Falls.”

Sports Talk WOFX-AM, Albany Adds FM Signal. Albany market sports talk outlet WOFX-AM “FOX Sports 980” adds an FM signal to its broadcast via translator W240EC at 95.9.  The iHeartMedia station carries the FOX Sports Radio daily lineup – “Outkick the Coverage with Clay Travis” in mornings, followed by Dan Patrick, “The Herd with Colin Cowherd,” and Doug Gottlieb in afternoon drive. Station program director Jeff Wolf says, “FOX Sports has the best national talent and sports play-by-play programming for sports fans all over the Capital Region.  We are absolutely thrilled to bring FOX Sports programming to even more listeners on 95.9 FM.”

Christine Travaglini to Receive MIW Group’s 2019 Trailblazer Award. The Mentoring and Inspiring Women in Radio Group announces that Katz Radio Group president Christine Travaglini is the recipient of this year’s MIW Group Frances Preston Trailblazer Award.  The MIW Group Trailblazer Award is presented annually to a woman who, through her leadership and success in the industry, creates opportunities for other women in radio to further their careers.  Travaglini will receive the award on September 25 during the Wednesday headliner, “You’re Not Just in the Radio Business Anymore: Stories from Innovators Who’ve Made the Transformation,” session at the NAB/RAB Radio Show.  MIW Group National Spokeswoman Denyse Mesnik says, “Christine began her career with Katz as a sales assistant in the Atlanta office and was the first person to rise from an assistant to a division president within the organization — that personifies a Trailblazer!  When selecting our MIW Trailblazer, we look for a woman who forged her own path to success in our industry while making it a priority to nurture others in their career growth.  Christine embodies those qualities and we look forward to honoring her at the 2019 Radio Show.”

TALKERS News Notes. On October 7, Howard Stern will commemorate the official opening of SiriusXM Hollywood, the company’s new Hollywood complex that features artist-first studios, with his first broadcast from the West Coast in almost 20 years.  The new broadcast and performance space is located in the heart of the burgeoning Hollywood Media District at 953 N. Sycamore Ave.  SiriusXM/Pandora says it “has been built from the ground up to reflect the company’s commitment to the West Coast artist community and audience, and to be the base for originating great talk, compelling entertainment, world class music, and exclusive performances for the more than 100 million listeners of the United States’ leading audio entertainment company.”…..The Westwood One-distributed “BOB & TOM Show” begins airing in Chicago on Monday (9/9) on Cumulus Media’s WKQX-HD2.  Cumulus says, “The popular show will broadcast with limited commercial interruption via a full metro market signal broadcasting from the top of the John Hancock Building.  The nearly 1.8 million HD Radio-equipped cars in the Chicago DMA will make ‘The BOB & TOM Show’ accessible for scores of people in the Chicagoland area who grew up listening to the legendary morning comedy show in markets across the Midwest and beyond.”…..iHeartMedia Milwaukee announces it has joined forces with The Wisconsin Podcast Festival to promote one listener’s podcast on-air with the “iHeart Your Podcast” contest.  The promotional contest will give the winner the opportunity to have their podcast advertised on all six of iHeartMedia Milwaukee’s stations including, news/talk WISN and sports talk WRNW-FM “97.3 The Game.”  The festival is the first of its kind and will feature live podcasts and special guests, including ‘95.7 BIG FM’ personality Eric Paulsen.  Wisconsin Podcast Festival founder Allison Phillips says, “It only made sense to partner with iHeartMedia Milwaukee for the Wisconsin Podcast Festival.  We can’t wait to bring Wisconsin’s podcasters and aspiring podcasters together for a weekend of learning and sharing.”…..Rapper and actor Tip “T.I.” Harris drops his first two “expeditiously” podcast episodes in partnership with PodcastOne.  In one episode, hip hop legends LL Cool J and Ice Cube join Harris to share never-before-heard stories of transitioning from kids who rapped in the hood, into mega superstar MCs, along with their evolution into successful businessmen…..iHeartMedia Riverside’s KPWK “FOX Sports AM 1350” enters into a  broadcast agreement with the California Baptist University athletics department, effective for the 2019-2021 athletic seasons.  As part of the deal, “FOX Sports AM 1350” will serve as the official flagship radio station for the school’s men’s basketball team.

Music Radio News and Career Moves. In Chicago, Hubbard Radio names Rachel Kelso associate producer of the morning drive “Sherman & Tingle Show” on classic rock WDRV “97-1 FM The Drive.”  Kelso previously served as producer for the “Jenn & Friends Show” at Entercom’s CHR WSTR, Atlanta “Star 94.”…..Pictured below (l-r) are WMMR, Philadelphia’s Bill Weston, Jacky Bam Bam, and Bill Burns assembling boxes of food at Metropolitan Area Neighborhood Nutrition Alliance as part of Beasley Media Group Philadelphia’s 2019 Day of Caring Initiative.  Three shifts of Beasley volunteers peeled and chopped vegetables, prepared and packaged soups, and assembled breakfast, lunch and dinner meal trays for freezing.  The organization provides medically appropriate meals, three a day, seven days a week, for area residents affected by chronic, life-threatening illnesses.

 

 

August 2019 PPM Data – Information for the August 2019 ratings period has been released for Washington (D.C.), Boston, Miami, Seattle, Detroit, Phoenix, Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, San Jose, and Middlesex-Somerset-Union. Nielsen Audio’s August 2019 survey period covered July 18 – August 14. See all the 6+ numbers from subscribing stations here.  Meanwhile, managing editor Mike Kinosian (Kinosian@TALKERS.com) provides his “Takeaways” from these nine PPM markets.

Washington, DC

Spoken-Word Formats – On the heels of July’s +.9, Cumulus Media news/talk WMAL is steady at 5.3 (6+) but pushes up from sixth to fifth. July’s increase halted three successive March through June declines that accounted for an overall 2.4 (6.8 – 5.5 – 5.2 – 4.4, 6+). Immediately before that streak, WMAL posted three straight (“Holiday” 2018 through March 2019) improvements for a collective +2.5 (4.3 – 5.7 – 6.6 – 6.8, 6+), with March’s 6.8 its best 6+-stat in the PPM-era. After posting a .2 (6+) in August 2018, Radio One’s WOL “News Talk – Where Information Is Power” is unlisted for the 13th sweep in succession.

This is the third consecutive report that Entercom sports talk WJFK-FM (Nationals) has logged a 3.4 (#13 to #12, 6+). In June, “106.7 The Fan” recaptured almost half (three-tenths) the eight-tenths lost in May. After nearly doubling (+.4) its 6+ AQH share via four straight sweeps without a loss (.5 – .7 – .8 – .8 – .9, 6+), Radio One’s similarly-formatted WTEM “980 The Team” is off 33% (-.3) in July/August (.9 – .7 – .6, #21 to #23, 6+). On July 1, Cumulus Media suspended its news/talk simulcast of WMAL-AM & WMAL-FM; WMAL-AM became sports talk WSBN “ESPN 630 AM The Sports Capitol.” WSBN checked in with a .1 (#29, 6+) in the July report but is unlisted in August.

An overall -2.5 in six successive down or flat sweeps (10.4 – 9.8 – 9.7 – 8.7 – 8.7 – 8.2 – 7.9, 6+), WTOP applies the brakes with a +.1 to 8.0 (6+) but backslides from second to third. The Hubbard Broadcasting all-news operation shifted to the runner-up slot in July after six straight months at #1. January’s 10.4 was its best 6+-performance since March 2018 (10.4, as well). Entercom business news WDCH gains two-tenths via three consecutive up or flat moves (.4 – .5 – .6 – .6, #24 to #23, 6+).

A July boost of four-tenths by American University-owned news/talk WAMU (8.0 – 8.4, 6+) interrupted three successive slips that accounted for a loss of nine-tenths (8.9 – 8.7 – 8.4 – 8.0, 6+). “The Mind Is Our Medium,” which progressed from the runner-up slot to #1 this time last month, forfeits two-tenths to 8.2 (6+) and is tied for the lead position. Immediately prior to gaining three-tenths in March, WAMU was -2.2 (“Holiday” 2018); +2.5 (January 2019); and -1.2 (February).

Washington, DC Music Formats – Over and above adding one-half share to July’s +.2 (7.5 – 7.7 – 8.2, 6+), Radio One urban AC WMMJ “Majic” – which had been anchored in third-place the past eight reports – marches to a first-place tie (with public news/talk WAMU – see above). July’s increase applied the brakes to three consecutive dips that resulted in a cumulative loss of seven-tenths (8.2 – 7.8 – 7.7 – 7.5, 6+). Immediately prior to that skid, “Majic” put together six successive increases that netted a +1.8 (6.4 – 6.7 – 6.8 – 7.4 – 7.5 – 7.9 – 8.2, 6+). This is its highest 6+-showing since March (8.2, as well). Howard University’s similarly-programmed WHUR is off six-tenths in three down or flat monthlies in succession (6.5 – 6.1 – 6.1 – 5.9, 6+) and is in fourth-place the fourth consecutive time. Down one-tenth in back-to-back reports (6.5 – 6.4 – 6.3, 6+), WHUR regained that deficit with a May pickup of two-tenths. Its March loss of one-tenth suspended three successive increases that accounted for a +1.2 (5.3 – 6.2 – 6.4 – 6.5, 6+). Tacking on eight-tenths to July’s +.1 (4.2 – 4.3 – 5.1, 6+), Atlantic Gateway Communications contemporary Christian WGTS “91.9 Christian Music Radio” carries on at #7. Myersville, Maryland-licensed WWEG “106.9 The Eagle” surfaced in print in January with a .6 (6+). The Manning Broadcasting classic hits-oldies station cracked the top twenty in February, April, May, and June. “The Eagle” is up one-half share to 1.2, its highest 6+-stat since debuting in January, and lands at #19. A loss of one-half share (3.8 – 3.3, 6+) sends Greater Washington Educational Telecommunications’ WETA “90.9 – Washington’s Classical Music Station” off the top ten (#9 to #13). While it remains in fifth-place, iHeartMedia adult contemporary WASH “97.1 – Washington’s Variety” surrenders one-tenth to 5.3 (6+), thus snapping four straight sweeps without a loss that accounted for a +1.0 (4.4 – 4.5 – 4.5 – 5.3 – 5.4, 6+). July’s 5.4 was its best 6+-performance since “Holiday” 2018 (10.4). On May 31, Cumulus Media hot AC WRQX “Mix 107.3 More Music – More Variety” transitioned to an Educational Media Foundation-owned contemporary Christian as WLVW “Positive & Encouraging K-Love.” May 2019 marked the final sweep before the format/ownership switch and “Mix” added six-tenths (3.5 – 4.1, 6+) to exit as a top ten station (#11 to #8). Its January 2019 through May 2019 topline was 3.5 – 4.1 – 3.5 – 3.5 – 4.1 (6+). In its new format, WLVW eroded by roughly 78% (-3.2) in June/July (4.1 – 2.2 – .9, #17 to #19, 6+); however, WLVW adds four-tenths in August to 1.3 (6+) and inches up to #18.

Boston

Spoken-Word FormatsEight positive or neutral trends in succession by iHeartMedia news/talk WRKO have yielded a +1.6 (2.1 – 2.2 – 2.2 – 2.4 – 2.5 – 2.7 – 2.7 – 3.6 – 3.7, 6+); “AM 680 – The Voice of Boston” repeats at #8. For the third month in a row, co-owned WXKS-AM “Talk 1200” adds one-tenth (.4 – .5 – .6 – .7, #26 to #25, 6+).

Up four-tenths (3.3 – 3.7, tenth to eighth, 6+) Entercom-owned sports talk WEEI-FM (Red Sox) catches Beasley Media Group-owned (Patriots, Celtics, Bruins) WBZ-FM “98.5 The Sports Hub,” which has lost nearly half (-3.3) its 6+ AQH-share in three drops in a row (7.0 – 5.6 – 3.8 – 3.7, seventh to eighth, 6+). Sample shifts for WEEI-FM include: -.5 (September 2018); +.5 (October); +.6 (November); -2.0 (December); -.7 (“Holiday” 2018); +1.7 (January 2019); -1.0 (February); -.5 (March); +.6 (April); and -.6 (July). Nine recent shifts for “The Sports Hub” include: +.9 (October 2018); +.8 (November); -1.0 (December); +.5 (“Holiday” 2018); +1.6 (January 2019); -.8 (February); +.8 (May); -1.4 (June); and -1.8 (July).

Frozen on 5.0 (6+) the past five months, iHeartMedia-owned news-talk hybrid WBZ-AM “News Radio 1030” busts out a one-half share increase to 5.5 (6+) and continues in fifth-place; WBZ-AM was +1.3 in January/February (4.3 – 5.5 – 5.6, 6+).

Up four-tenths in July/August (3.4 – 3.5 – 3.8, 6+), Boston University news/talk WBUR moves from ninth to seventh. In addition to advancing from #16 to #14, WGBH Educational Foundation news/talk WGBH picks up six-tenths to 2.8, its best (6+) showing since December 2018 (2.8, as well).

Boston Music Formats – Improving by six-tenths each are Beasley Media Group’s WBOS “Boston’s Rock 92.9 Rocks” (#14 to #13) and Northeast Broadcasting triple A WXRV “92.5 The River – Boston’s Independent Radio” (2.1 – 2.7, #17 to #15, 6+). “Rock 92.9” is up eight-tenths in three straight increases (2.4 – 2.5 – 2.6 – 3.2, 6+). When “The River” relinquished six-tenths in July, it curtailed four consecutive upticks that netted nine-tenths (1.8 – 2.3 – 2.4 – 2.6 – 2.7, 6+). A gain of three-tenths to 2.2 (flat at #18, 6+) by iHeartMedia rhythmic CHR WJMN “Jam’n 94.5” pulls the plug on six straight down or flat moves that resulted in a -1.2 (3.1 – 2.8 – 2.3 – 2.2 – 2.2 – 2.0 – 1.9, 6+). Notwithstanding that it is #1 the fifth month in a row, Beasley Media Group classic hits-oldies WROR “105.7 – 80s & More” falters by -1.1 (8.8 – 7.7, 6+). This follows – and basically wipes away – back-to-back (June and July) increases of six-tenths (7.6 – 8.2 – 8.8, 6+). When WROR dropped two-tenths in May, it snapped at four a consecutive string of up or flat trends that netted a +2.2 (5.6 – 6.2 – 6.8 – 7.8 – 7.8, 6+). Boston’s (6+) pacesetters thus far this calendar year have been: iHeartMedia-owned CHR WXKS-FM “Kiss 108 – Boston’s #1 Hit Music Station” (January, 7.3, and February, 7.4, 6+); WROR (March and April, 7.8 – both times, 6+); WROR and WXKS-FM (May, 7.6, 6+); and WROR (June, 8.2, July, 8.8, and August, 7.7, 6+). In the market’s CHR arena, iHeartMedia’s aforementioned WXKS-FM “Kiss 108” is an overall -1.3 in three setbacks in succession (7.6 – 7.2 – 6.9 – 6.3, 6+) but is in the runner-up slot the third straight month. A one-half share increase in May took “Kiss 108” to 7.6, its strongest 6+-performance since August 2018’s 7.8. Entercom’s similarly-formatted WODS “103.3 Amp Radio” is without an increase the seventh consecutive time for a net loss of seven-tenths (2.5 – 2.4 – 2.4 – 2.2 – 2.1 – 2.1 – 2.1 – 1.8, #16 to #19, 6+). The combined +.8 that Entercom adult contemporary WMJX “Magic 106.7 – Today’s Hits/Yesterday’s Favorites” racked up in May/June (6.1 – 6.2 – 6.9, 6+) is vaporized in July/August with a -.9 (6.9 – 6.4 – 6.0, 6+). June’s 6.9 was its highest 6+-stat since “Holiday” 2018’s 14.5. The April 2019 through August 2019 (6+) profiles of Beasley Media Group rhythmic hot AC WBQT “Hot 96.9” and Entercom hot AC WWBX “Mix 104.1” are extremely similar. “Hot” is -1.0 in four straight down or flat moves (4.3 – 3.6 – 3.6 – 3.3 – 3.3, #10 to #11, 6+), while “Mix” is -.6 in four consecutive months without an increase (3.9 – 3.7 – 3.5 – 3.3 – 3.3, #10 to #11, 6+).

Miami

English-Language Spoken-Word Formats – The April 2019 through August 2019 topline for iHeartMedia news/talk WIOD “News Radio 620 – Miami’s News, Traffic, & Weather Station” is a very consistent 2.7 – 2.6 – 2.6 – 2.5 – 2.6 (#18 to #17, 6+).

Recently rebranded from “Sports Radio 560” to “560 The Joe,” Entercom-owned WQAM (Dolphins) gains one-tenth in back-to-back sweeps (.5 – 6 – .7, #30 to #28, 6+). It leapfrogs co-owned WAXY “Sports Talk 790 The Ticket,” which is down 33% (-.3) in July/August (.9 – .8 – .6, #26 to #29, 6+).

After logging four straight up or flat reports that produced two-tenths (2.1 – 2.2 – 2.3 – 2.3 – 2.3, 6+), Dade County School Board news/talk WLRN falters by seven-tenths in July/August (2.3 – 1.9 – 1.6, 6+) and departs the top twenty (#20 to #21).

Miami Music Formats – Within 6.3 – 6.6 range in each of the last eight survey periods (6.5 – 6.4 – 6.6 – 6.4 – 6.3 – 6.3 – 6.6 – 6.3, 6+), Cox Media Group urban AC WHQT “Hot 105” breaks out a +.7 to 7.0 (6+) and continues in the runner-up slot. This (7.0) is the highest 6+-stat for “Hot” in just over one year (June 2018, 7.1, 6+). A collective -1.1 through six straight negative or neutral moves (5.2 – 4.7 – 4.5 – 4.4 – 4.1 – 4.1 – 4.1, 6+), urban contemporary sibling WEDR ends the slump with a +.3 to 4.4 (6+); “99 Jamz” is anchored at #7. By gaining six-tenths (3.2 – 3.8, 6+), iHeartMedia classic rock WBGG “Big 105.9” cracks the top ten (#12 to #8) and records its best 6+-showing (3.8) since November 2017’s 3.9. In addition to regaining the three-tenths it lost in July (7.6 – 7.3 – 7.6, 6+), Cox Media Group-owned adult contemporary WFEZ “Easy 93.1” is #1 the eighth consecutive ratings period (including a three-way tie at #1 in February). Eight-tenths has been a common fluctuation recently for “Easy” as it was down eight-tenths in February; up by that magnitude in March; and up again by eight-tenths in June. Entering the “Holiday” 2018 sweep, “Easy 93.1” finished on top seven straight times. Entercom’s similarly-formatted WLYF repeats July’s (6+) AQH-share (5.5) and market rank (fourth). When “101.5 Lite FM” picked up one-tenth in July, it curtailed four straight sweeps without an increase that led to an overall -1.2 (6.6 – 6.2 – 6.2 – 6.1 – 5.4, 6+). It was in third-place March, April, May, and June. Following four upticks in succession that produced a +1.3 (2.8 – 3.1 – 3.4 – 3.7 – 4.1, 6+), rhythmic CHR cluster-mate WPOW “Power 96” surrenders all but one-tenth of that increase and fades from the top ten (2.9, -1.2, #7 to #15, 6+). While it continues at #9, Spanish Broadcasting System-owned Spanish tropical WXDJ “El Zol 106.7” is -1.2 in six straight down or flat trends (4.9 – 4.8 – 4.1 – 4.1 – 4.0 – 3.8 – 3.7, 6+). In the market’s CHR contest, iHeartMedia-owned WHYI “Y-100 Miami’s #1 Hit Music Station” gains three-tenths (2.8 – 3.1, 6+) at the same time that Cox Media Group’s WFLC “Hits 97.3” forfeits three-tenths (3.3 – 3.0, 6+). As a result, “Y-100” (#15 to #11) overtakes “Hits 97.3” (#11 to #13).

Seattle

Spoken-Word Formats – Steady in fifth-place, Bonneville news/talk KIRO-FM gains one-half share in July/August (4.6 – 4.9 – 5.1, 6+). Co-owned KTTH “Conservative Talk Radio,” which logged a +.5 in three straight sweeps without a loss (1.2 – 1.2 – 1.4 – 1.7, 6+), drops two-tenths to 1.5 (flat at #22, 6+). In five successive negative or neutral reports, Sinclair Broadcast Group-owned KVI lost more than half (-.9) of its 6+ AQH share since February (1.6 – 1.3 – 1.2 – 1.2 – 1.1 – .7, 6+), but “Talk Radio 570” ends the slide by picking up two-tenths to .9 (#26 to #25, 6+).

A collective -1.3 in four straight down or flat trends (4.3 – 3.4 – 3.4 – 3.0 – 3.0, 6+), Bonneville sports talk KIRO-AM “ESPN 710” (Mariners, Seahawks) slumps from #14 to #17. After having its 6+ stat sliced by more than 60% (-.9) via four consecutive slips (1.4 – 1.3 – 1.2 – .6 – .5, 6+), iHeartMedia-owned KJR-AM “Seattle’s Sports Radio 950” improves by three-tenths to .8 (6+) and repeats at #28.

An increase of four-tenths (2.8 – 3.2, #15 to #13, 6+) takes Sinclair Broadcast Group all-news KOMO to its best 6+-stat (3.2) since November 2017’s 3.4.

In three consecutive decreases (6.1 – 5.6 – 5.5 – 5.2, 6+), Northwest Public Radio news/talk KUOW has lost nine-tenths and drops from second to fourth.

Seattle Music FormatsJune’s first-place tie between iHeartMedia-owned KZOK “102.5 Seattle’s Classic Rock Station” and Hubbard Broadcasting CHR KQMV “MOViN’ 92.5 – Seattle’s #1 Hit Music Station” was broken with emphasis in July when the former gained nine-tenths and the later spiraled by eight-tenths. The roles are reversed in August though as “MOViN’ 92.5” hangs out a +1.1 (5.3 – 6.4, third to first, 6+) while “Seattle’s Classic Rock Station” plummets by -1.0 (7.0 – 6.0, first to second, 6+). An overall -1.0 in four successive down or flat trends (7.0 – 6.8 – 6.8 – 6.6 – 6.0, 6+), KQMV ended the slump in June with a gain of one-tenth. “MOViN’” made it to #1 in April, the first time it reached the lead spot since November 2018. As a result of August’s -1.0, KZOK snaps its consecutive string of eight straight positive spikes that produced a +3.3 (3.7 – 3.9 – 4.4 – 4.5 – 4.8 – 5.6 – 6.0 – 6.1 – 7.0, 6+). Immediately in advance of that particular run, KZOK was -1.6 in four consecutive ratings periods without an increase (5.3 – 5.1 – 4.9 – 4.9 – 3.7, 6+). It’s a strong sweep for the market’s two adult contemporary outlets as Entercom’s KSWD “94.1 The Sound” logs a +1.0 (4.4 – 5.4, sixth to third, 6+), while Hubbard Broadcasting’s KRWM “Warm 106.9” improves by six-tenths (4.3 – 4.9, eighth to sixth, 6+). In each of the last three sweeps, “The Sound” and “Warm” were separated by one-tenth. Prior to eroding by -1.1 in April, “The Sound” was an overall +1.5 through three consecutive increases (3.7 – 3.8 – 5.1 – 5.2, 6+). Entering the May sweep, “Warm 106.9” recorded a 4.8 (6+) in three of the previous four reports (4.8 – 4.0 – 4.8 – 4.8, 6+) and was #1 in December and “Holiday” 2018. By notching a +.3 to 3.1 (flat at #15, 6+), Sinclair Broadcast Group hot AC KPLZ  “Star 101.5 Today’s Best Mix” halts seven straight down or flat reports that accounted for a collective -2.3 (5.1 – 3.8 – 3.7 – 3.1 – 3.1 – 2.9 – 2.9 – 2.8, 6+). A combined +1.4 in July/August (3.7 – 4.5 – 5.1, 6+), iHeartMedia adult hits KJAQ “96.5 Jack FM Playing What We Want” surrenders half that increase (4.4 -.7, fourth to eighth, 6+). In July, Seattle’s version of “Jack” reached the five-share threshold (5.1, 6+) for the first time in nearly ten years (5.0, October 2009). After a lengthy hiatus from being in print, Hubbard Broadcasting adult standards KIXI resurfaced with three straight .7 showings (February, March, and April, 6+). It elevated to 1.3 (6+) in May; 1.2 (June, 6+); and 1.4 (July, 6+). In August, however, “AM 880 – Music As Cool Now As It Was Then” drops to .9 (#25, 6+). After more than doubling (+2.2) its 6+ AQH share in eight successive up or flat sweeps (2.1 – 2.1 – 2.4 – 2.8 – 3.3 – 3.5 – 4.0 – 4.2 – 4.3, 6+), co-owned KNUC “New Country 98.9 The Bull” returns one-tenth to 4.2 (6+) and departs the top ten (#8 to #12). One-tenth ahead of “The Bull” is Entercom’s KKWF “100.7 The Wolf – #1 For Country” (4.1 – 4.3, +.2, #12 to #9, 6+), which wiped away May’s +.9 with June/July’s combined -.9 (5.0 – 4.5 – 4.1, 6+). Prior to April, when it regressed by six-tenths, KKWF was a cumulative +1.4 as a result of three straight upticks (3.3- 4.3 – 4.5 – 4.7, 6+).

Detroit

Spoken-Word Formats – Six straight sweeps without an increase by Cumulus Media’s WJR led to a -1.7 (3.7 – 3.5 – 3.5 – 3.5 – 3.1 – 2.6 – 2.0, 6+), but “News Talk 760” (Lions) applies the brakes with a +.2 to 2.2 (6+) and is flat at #19.

Stuck on 5.0 (6+) in February and March and then on 5.4 (6+) in April and May, Entercom sports talk WXYT-FM (Tigers) is a combined -1.5 in three successive setbacks (5.4 – 4.7 – 4.5 – 3.9, 6+); “97.1 The Ticket” exits the top ten (#9 to #11).

A combined -1.4 in June/July (6.2 – 5.4 – 4.8, 6+), co-owned WWJ “News Radio 950” roars back with a +1.1 to 5.9 (6+) and vaults from sixth to second; WWJ was #1 in March.

The (repetitive) April 2019 through August 2019 topline for Michigan Public Media news/talk WUOM is: 1.6 – 1.5 – 1.6 – 1.5 – 1.6 (flat at #20, 6+). Unchanged at #21, Wayne State University news/talk WDET regains the two-tenths it dropped in July (1.2 – 1.0 – 1.2, 6+).

Detroit Music Formats – Not only is Beasley Media Group urban-rhythmic oldies WMGC +1.3 in July/August (3.9 – 4.1 – 5.2, 6+), “105.1 The Bounce” jumps into the top ten (#11 to #7) and reaches the five-share level for the first time since February 2017 (5.2, as well). Co-owned WRIF “Everything That Rocks” improves by six-tenths (4.6 – 5.2, 6+) to advance from eighth to seventh. This (5.2) is its highest 6+-showing since February’s 5.9. Still in that Beasley Media Group cluster, WCSX “94.7 – Detroit’s Classic Rock” is off three-tenths (7.2 – 6.9, 6+) but repeats at #1. Its June/July +.8 (6.4 – 6.5 – 7.2, 6+) followed three successive down or flat months that accounted for a -1.4 (7.8 – 6.5 – 6.4 – 6.4, 6+). In March, WCSX eroded by -1.3 to shift from first to second. Its March/April decline of -1.5 followed back-to-back gains of nine-tenths (6.0 – 6.9 – 7.8, 6+). “Detroit’s Classic Rock” spent four straight months at #1 before being dislodged in September 2018. Off a full-share through four straight survey periods without an increase (4.1 – 3.9 – 3.3 – 3.1 – 3.1, 6+), iHeartMedia urban contemporary WJLB “97.9 – Detroit’s Hip-Hop and R&B” halts the slide with a +.4 to 3.5 (#15 to #14, 6+). A loss of six-tenths (6.2 – 5.6, 6+) sends adult contemporary cluster-mate WNIC “The Best Variety of the ‘80s, ‘90s, & Today” from second to fifth. After its 6+ AQH share eroded by nearly two-thirds (-11.8) in four successive sweeps (17.9 – 7.1 – 6.6 – 6.2 – 6.1, 6+), WNIC answered with a May increase of four-tenths. WNIC’s “Holiday” 2018 17.9 is the largest 6+ AQH share by any Detroit station in the PPM-era. On top in December 2018 and “Holiday” 2018, WNIC more than tripled (+12.2) its 6+-share via four straight increases (5.7 – 6.2 – 6.6 – 12.2 – 17.9, 6+). Unchanged at #10 is its format rival – Entercom’s WDZH “98.7 The Breeze” – which is off a combined eight-tenths in July/August (4.8 – 4.3 – 4.0, 6+). CHR WDZH “Amp Radio” became adult contemporary “The Breeze” in early-November (2018) and, in eight successive reports without a loss (2.3 – 2.7 – 2.7 – 2.9 – 3.6 – 4.0 – 4.0 – 4.1 – 4.8, 6+), it more than doubled (+2.5) its 6+ AQH share. The streak, however, ended in July. Even though Cumulus Media’s country-formatted WDRQ is +1.3 through six consecutive positive or neutral sweeps (1.6 – 1.9 – 2.4 – 2.6 – 2.8 – 2.8 – 2.9, 6+), “93.1 Nash FM” backslides from #16 to #17. This (2.9) is its best 6+-stat since May 2018’s 3.0. Entercom’s similarly-formatted WYCD “99.5 Detroit Country Music” is off seven-tenths in July/August (5.3 – 4.8 – 4.6, 6+) and slides from sixth to ninth.

Phoenix

Spoken-Word Formats – On the heels of June’s -.8 (4.0 – 3.2, 6+), Bonneville news/talk KTAR-FM (Arizona Cardinals) is a combined +1.0 in July/August (3.2 – 3.3 – 4.2, 6+) and zooms into the top ten (#11 to #6). Despite being off seven-tenths via three drops in succession (3.1 – 2.8 – 2.5 – 2.4, 6+), iHeartMedia’s KFYI “News Talk 550” climbs from #16 to #15.

Off -1.0 in June/July (3.1 – 2.2 – 2.1, 6+) Bonneville sports talk KMVP-FM “98.7 Arizona Sports” (Arizona Diamondbacks) notches an August +.3 to 2.4 (6+) and leaps from #19 to #15 (tied with KFYI).

Albeit that Maricopa County Community College news/talk KJZZ repeats July’s 3.4 (6+), it departs the top ten (#10 to #11).

Phoenix Music Formats – Recording increases of one-half share each are Entercom classic hits-oldies KOOL “94.5 Phoenix Classic Hits” (third to second) and iHeartMedia’s KNIX “102.5 Today’s Best Country” (steady at #5). KOOL is an overall +2.3 in five bumps in succession (4.0 – 4.1 – 5.0 – 5.3 – 5.8 – 6.3, 6+) and has its best 6+-stat (6.3) in more than two years (July 2017, 6.4, 6+). KNIX “Today’s Best Country” gains nine-tenths in three successive spikes (4.2 – 4.3 – 4.6 – 5.1, 6+), obliterating its -.9 in three straight decreases (5.1 – 4.5 – 4.3 – 4.2, 6+) and matches February’s 5.1. Adult contemporary sibling KESZ is an overall +1.7 via five consecutive upticks (5.3 – 5.5 – 5.9 – 6.5 – 6.8 – 7.0, 6+) and repeats at #1 with its strongest 6+-showing since January (7.0, as well). Owing to three drops in a row (5.3 – 4.6 – 4.5 – 3.7, 6+), CHR cluster-mate KZZP “104.7 Kiss-FM” is a cumulative -1.6 and shifts from seventh to tenth. The last time “Kiss” fell below a four-share (6+) was “Holiday” 2017 (3.0). Univision Radio regional Mexican KHOT “Que Buena 105.9,” which was -1.1 in four straight sweeps without an increase (3.0 – 3.0 – 2.7 – 2.5 – 1.9, 6+), ends the slide with a +.3 to 2.2 (6+) and reenters the top twenty (#21 to #18). Off seven-tenths (2.7 – 2.0, 6+), Entravision’s similarly-formatted  KLNZ “La Tricolor 103.5” fades from the top twenty (#14 to #21). Faltering by one-half share each are iHeartMedia adult hits KYOT “95.5 The Mountain – We Play Everything” (6.7 – 6.2, second to third, 6+); Hubbard Broadcasting-owned KUPD “Arizona’s Real Rock” (4.6 – 4.1, fifth to seventh, 6+); and iHeartMedia hot AC KMXP “Mix 96.9” (4.4 – 3.9, eighth to ninth, 6+). Recent shifts for KYOT “The Mountain” include: -1.2 (“Holiday” 2018); +1.6 (January/February); -.8 (March); +.7 (April) -1.2 (May); +1.2 (June); and -.5 (August). “The Mountain” ranked first three ratings periods in succession before being ousted in May. KUPD “Arizona’s Real Rock” has its lowest 6+-stat (4.1) since “Holiday” 2016’s 4.0. In July, KMXP “Mix” gained one-half share to halt seven successive down or flat reports that accounted for a -2.0 (5.9 – 4.9 – 4.8 – 4.8 – 4.4 – 4.4 – 4.2 – 3.9, 6+).

Riverside

Spoken-Word Formats – After three ratings periods in a row of being unlisted, iHeartMedia news talk KKDD “1290 News Talk IE” resurfaces with a .1 (#20, 6+).

Unchanged at #20, co-owned KPWK “Fox Sports Radio 1350 AM” has a November 2018 through August 2019 topline of: .2 – .2 – .1 – .1 – .1 – .2 – .1 – .2 – .1 – .1 – .1 (6+). For the 20th straight sweep, similarly-formatted/Los Angeles Angels-owned (LAA 1, LLC) KLAA “Angels Radio AM 830” is unlisted.

This is the fourth report in a row that San Bernardino Community College news/talk KVCR is below a one-share (.8 – .4 – .6 – .5 – .8, flat at #14, 6+). Pasadena City College news/talk KPCC “The Voice of Southern California” posts a .3 (6+) for the third time in the last five reports (.1 – .3 – .1 – .3 – .3, 6+) and repeats at #16.

Riverside Music Formats – Off six-tenths in June/July (3.0 – 2.9 – 2.4, 6+), Univision Radio regional Mexican KSCA “LA 101.9” erases that shortfall with an increase of nine-tenths to 3.3 (eighth to sixth, 6+). In three down or flat trends in a row (4.6 – 4.4 – 4.4 – 3.5, 6+), Spanish contemporary cluster-mate KLVE was a collective -1.1 but “107.5 K-Love” picks up two-tenths to 3.7 (6+) and carries on at #5. Not only does KLYY add eight-tenths to July’s one-half share increase (6.2 – 6.7 – 7.5, 6+), “Jose” marches from second to first. Prior to July, the Entravision Spanish adult hits outlet was an overall -4.3 in seven straight declines (10.5 – 8.5 – 8.2 – 8.1 – 7.4 – 7.0 – 6.4 – 6.2, 6+). It had been in the runner-up slot in April, May, June, and July. In advance of the April ratings period, “Jose” occupied the #1 spot 11 sweeps in succession. December 2018’s 10.5 marked the first time any Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario station reached double-figures (6+) since April 2015, when KLYY recorded a 10.4. After four straight months at #1, KOLA segues to #2. The Anaheim Broadcasting classic hits-oldies station is -1.7 in July/August (8.6 – 7.6 – 6.9, 6+), immediately after being +1.8 via three successive positive spikes (6.8 – 7.2 – 8.0 – 8.6, 6+). Prior to May, the last time KOLA reached the eight-share level (6+) was February 2018 (8.4). KOLA finished second in 11 successive survey periods and went to #1 in April. Good News Radio contemporary Christian KSGN falters for the sixth time in the last seven sweeps and is a collective -1.7 in that stretch (4.1 – 3.9 – 3.8 – 3.6 – 3.3 – 3.4 – 3.2 – 2.4, sixth to eighth, 6+). “Family Friendly 89.7” falls below a three-share (2.4, 6+) for the first time since November 2018’s 2.7. Two of its format rivals – Educational Media Foundation-owned KLRD “Air 1 – Worship Now” (1.6, #11, June 2019, 6+) and KKLQ “Positive, Encouraging 100.3” (.7, #15, June 2019, 6+) – are unlisted for the second month in succession. After reaching the five-share level in July (5.1, 6+), Entercom’s KFRG “New Country K-Frog” sputters by seven-tenths to 4.4 (6+) but continues at #3. In four consecutive down or flat trends, Liberman Broadcasting regional Mexican KRQB is down eight-tenths (3.3 – 3.1 – 3.0 – 3.0 – 2.5, 6+) but stays in seventh-place. This (2.5) is the lowest 6+-showing for “Que Buena 96.1” since 2.3 in November 2018. The +1.6 that LC Media urban-rhythmic oldies KQIE “Old School 104.7” chalked up in three successive improvements (2.1 – 2.7 – 3.0 – 3.7, 6+) becomes a -1.6 in five consecutive setbacks (3.7 – 3.4 – 2.7 – 2.6 – 2.3 – 2.1, flat at #9, 6+).

San Jose

Spoken-Word Formats – In ten straight San Jose sweeps without an increase (3.0 – 2.2 – 2.2 – 2.1 – 1.9 – 1.9 – 1.9 – 1.9 – 1.7 – 1.5 – 1.4, 6+), KGO lost more than 50% of its 6+ AQH share (-1.6). The Cumulus Media news/talk station answers with an August gain of four-tenths to 1.8 (6+) and reenters the top twenty (#23 to #19). There is a similar turnaround for co-owned news/talk KSFO, which is up two-tenths to 1.0 (#27 to #24, 6+), thus pulling the plug on three successive declines that accounted for a loss of roughly half (-.7) its 6+-stat (1.5 – 1.3 – 1.2 – .8, 6+). In July, KSFO fell below a one-share (.8, 6+) for the first time since “Holiday” 2018 (.9).

Regressing by six-tenths each are KGO and KSFO sports talk cluster-mate KNBR “The Sports Leader” (4.2 – 3.6, seventh to eighth, 6+) and Entercom’s similarly-formatted KGMZ “95.7 The Game” (#21 to #24, 6+). Giants flagship KNBR erased June’s half-share decrease and had posted a 4.2 (6+) three times in the previous four reports (4.2 – 4.2 – 3.7 – 4.2, 6+); KNBR was +1.1 in April. “The Game” erodes by nearly two-thirds (-1.9) in three straight sharp declines (2.9 – 2.4 – 1.6 – 1.0, 6+), immediately after a +1.4 as a result of three consecutive positive spikes (1.5 – 1.7 – 1.9 – 2.9, 6+).

The (repetitive) April 2019 through August 2019 topline for all-news sibling KCBS-AM is: 5.6 – 5.2 – 5.6 – 5.2 – 5.6 (fifth to fourth, 6+). KCBS-AM was -1.9 in three straight March through May decreases.

Even though it returns the three-tenths it added in July (6.0 – 6.3 – 6.0, 6+), Northern California Public Broadcasting news/talk KQED remains at #3. Three straight slips by KQED accounted for a collective -1.1 (7.1 – 6.9 – 6.1 – 6.0, 6+). San Francisco Unified School District news/talk KALW follows July’s +.6 with an August drop-off of three-tenths (1.3 – 1.0, flat at #24, 6+).

San Jose Music Formats – Positive news continues for Alpha Media classic hits-oldies KBAY “94.5 Bay FM – The Bay’s Greatest Hits,” which not only is #1 the fourth consecutive month but hauls out a +1.3 (7.3 – 8.6, 6+). “Bay FM” answered April’s -1.5 with a +1.3 in May (6.2 – 7.5, 6+), returning to #1 after an April-only stay at #2. Prior to the April sweep, KBAY had been +1.5 via three bumps in a row (6.2 – 6.9 – 7.3 – 7.7, 6+). Notching increases of six-tenths each are Univision Radio regional Mexican KSOL “Que Buena” (3.0 – 3.6, tenth to eighth); iHeartMedia rhythmic CHR KYLD “Wild 94.9” (2.9, #13 to #11, 6+); and Educational Media Foundation contemporary Christian KJLV “Positive & Encouraging K-Love” (.1 – .7, #31 to #28, 6+). “Que Buena” has its best 6+-stat (3.6) in nearly two years (3.8, November 2017). “Wild” was a combined -1.1 in June/July (3.4 – 3.0 – 2.3, 6+), falling below a three-share (2.3, 6+, July 2019) for the first time since November 2018 (2.9). “K-Love” popped on with a .6 (6+) in June and then lost one-half share in July. Up one-half share (3.6 – 4.1, 6+), Empire Broadcasting’s KRTY “95.3 San Jose Hot Country” has its best 6+-performance since December 2018 (4.1, as well) and advances from ninth to sixth. Major ups/downs continue for Univision Radio Spanish adult hits KBRG “Amor 100.3,” which was an overall -1.1 in three successive declines (6.1 – 6.0 – 5.3 – 5.0, 6+); rebounded in July with a +.9 to 5.9 (6+); but now craters by -1.5 (4.4, fourth to fifth, 6+). In three straight drops, Bonneville-owned KUFX “98.5 K-Fox – The South Bay’s Classic Rock” falters by an overall -1.9 (5.8 – 5.3 – 4.9 – 3.9, sixth to seventh, 6+). This is the eighth month in a row that adult contemporary sibling KOIT-FM is unlisted in San Jose. As the result of five straight increases (3.0 – 3.1 – 3.2 – 3.3 – 6.0 – 10.1, 6+), “Today’s Hits & Yesterday’s Favorites” was a cumulative +7.1 and reached #1 in “Holiday” 2018. KOIT-FM remains in print in the San Francisco report.

Middlesex

Spoken-Word Formats – In a bit of an oddity, Townsquare Media news/talk WKXW is #1 the seventh successive month yet hasn’t had an increase the seventh time in a row. “New Jersey 101.5” is -1.5 in that January 2019 through August 2019 timeframe (8.1 – 7.9 – 7.5 – 7.3 – 7.1 – 6.9 – 6.9 – 6.6, 6+). A boost of six-tenths (2.9 – 3.5, 6+) enables iHeartMedia news/talk WOR “710 The Voice of New York” to rocket from #17 to #12. Owing to three Middlesex-Somerset-Union upticks in succession, Cumulus Media news/talk WABC doubles (+.6) its 6+ AQH-share (.6 – .7 – .9 – 1.2, #25 to #24, 6+).

Three successive bumps by Entercom sports talk WFAN (Yankees, Giants) result in a net gain of eight-tenths (3.6 – 3.7 – 4.0 – 4.4, tenth to ninth, 6+). Similarly-programmed WEPN “98.7 ESPN New York,” which added seven-tenths in May, is down an overall nine-tenths in June/July/August (2.5 – 2.1 – 1.6 – 1.6, flat at #23, 6+).

In addition to being up one-half share via four consecutive positive spikes (1.6 – 1.7 – 1.8 – 1.9 – 2.1, 6+), Entercom all-news WINS enters the top twenty (#21 to #20). Conversely, co-owned/similarly-programmed WCBS-AM (Mets) is off seven-tenths in July/August (2.5 – 2.1 – 1.8, 6+) and departs the top twenty (#19 to #22).

After losing six-tenths in three consecutive decreases (2.5 – 2.2 – 2.0 – 1.9, WNYC Broadcasting Foundation news/talk WNYC-FM ends the slide with a +.1 to 2.0 (6+) and repeats at #21.

Middlesex Music Formats – In addition to jumping from sixth to fourth, Beasley Media Group adult contemporary WMGQ “Magic 98.3 – Today’s Hits/Yesterday’s Favorites” is a collective +1.9 in four consecutive positive or neutral trends (3.4 – 4.1 – 4.1 – 4.4 – 5.3, 6+). This (5.3) is the strongest 6+-stat for “Magic” since “Holiday” 2018’s 5.8. Posting a robust August 2019 increase of nine-tenths as well is Emmis urban AC WBLS (5.4 – 6.3, third to second). WBLS now trails market frontrunner (news/talk) WKXW by just three-tenths. Three up or flat moves in succession by rhythmic CHR cluster-mate WQHT yield a +1.1 (2.7 – 2.8 – 3.0 – 3.6 – 3.6, 6+) as “Hot 97” enters the top ten (#11 to #10). This is its best 6+ Middlesex-Somerset-Union performance since November 2018 (3.6, as well). An uptick of six-tenths by iHeartMedia-owned WAXQ enables “Q-104.3 – New York’s Classic Rock” to reach the five-share level (4.4 – 5.0, unchanged at #6, 6+). On the other hand, off by six-tenths each are Entercom-owned WNYL “Alt 92.3 New York’s New Alternative” (3.3 – 2.7, #12 to #15) and iHeartMedia rhythmic CHR WKTU “103.5 KTU” (3.1 – 2.5, #15 to #17, 6+). This (2.7) is the lowest 6+-stat for “Alt” since 2.5 in “Holiday” 2018. When WKTU posted a July gain of three-tenths, it interrupted three down or flat moves in a row that led to a loss of two-tenths (3.0 – 2.9 – 2.8 – 2.8, 6+). Faltering by one-half share (4.1 – 3.6, 6+), Cumulus Media’s WNSH “New York’s Country 94.7” slips from ninth to tenth. Unchanged at #14, iHeartMedia-owned urban contemporary WWPR “Power 105.1” is off seven-tenths in four straight down or flat trends (3.7 – 3.5 – 3.5 – 3.2 – 3.0, 6+). While Spanish Broadcasting System Spanish tropical WSKQ is without an increase the fourth straight time for a -1.0 since April (3.7 – 3.6 – 3.0 – 3.0 – 2.7, 6+), “Mega 97.9” actually climbs from #16 to #15. Five successive improvements by Entercom hot AC WNEW net a +1.7 (3.4 – 3.8 – 3.9 – 4.5 – 5.0 – 5.1, 6+) as “NEW 102.7” continues in fifth-place. A combined -3.4 in June/July (3.8 – 2.0 – .4, #22 to #30, 6+), WNEW’s former hot AC competitor, WPLJ, disappears from print. Cumulus Media sold WPLJ to Educational Media Foundation, which shifted the station from hot AC to contemporary Christian on May 31.

Friday, August 16, 2019

| August 16, 2019

New Installment Posted of “The Michael Harrison Wrap: An Overview of the National Conversation.” The recently launched, one-hour experimental weekend program, “The Michael Harrison Wrap,” produced by Goodphone Communications that looks back each week at the hottest topics discussed in American talk media per the research of TALKERS magazine, is now posted on the website of its flagship station, iHeartMedia’s WONK-FM, Washington, DC.  The new episode titled, “A Variety of Unpleasant Conundrums!” looks back at this past week of August 12-16, 2019 and features guests (in order of appearance): Kevin Casey, executive editor, TALKERS magazine; Renee Kohanski, M.D.; Kevin Miller, talk show host, KIDO, Boise; Joe Thomas, talk show host WCHV, Charlottesville; and Elaina Newport, co-founder and head songwriter, The Capitol Steps. The news/talk media show airs on WONK-FM on Friday afternoons between 6:00 pm and 7:00 pm as a recap and exclamation mark for the week-in-review as well as several other stations around the country including KSCO, Santa Cruz, CA; KBKW, Aberdeen, WA and during the weekend on the Virginia Talk Radio Network as well as Pioneer Valley Radio in Springfield, MA and the iHeart Podcast Network. Hosted by Michael Harrison, this excellent show is now being made available as a service to terrestrial news/talk stations from TALKERS for on-air or online presentation on a market-exclusive basis.  For information call Barbara Kurland at 413-565-5413.  To listen to this week’s episode (and the program’s complete archives), please click here.  To view the latest TALKERS magazine topic research, please click here.

First-Half Ad Drivers. It isn’t your imagination – automotive dealers and insurance providers are the top advertising categories in radio, TV, and cable. That’s the analysis of Media Monitors’ latest rankings that cover the period from January 1 through July 31. Local auto dealers finish far ahead of any other category during the same period last year. As far as the number of vehicle insurance commercials are concerned, Media Monitors opines, “New auto buyers are likely to shop around. To get their brand in front of interested consumers, insurance providers are right behind auto dealers in the number of spots they’ve aired this year.” Local car and truck dealers focus their advertising on radio, where they broadcast the highest number of spots (7,659,729), and on TV, where they ranked #10 (2,537,737). As far as specific advertisers are concerned, Home Depot, GEICO, Liberty Mutual, and McDonald’s aired the most spots thus far through July 31 of this year. The top 10 radio advertisers for the first seven months of 2019 are: Home Depot, GEICO, Lowe’s, Indeed, McDonald’s, Progressive, Seriously, Sprint, Macy’s and JC Penney. By way of perspective, #1 Home Depot had more than three times the number of “radio instances” (1,777,560) than #10 JC Penney (579,288).

TALKERS News Notes. The new Phoenix affiliate for CUMULUS MEDIA’s Westwood One Radio Network primetime NFL coverage is CRC Broadcasting Company sports talk KQFN “The Fanatic.” CRC president and chief executive officer Ron Cohen remarks, “There are no more popular yearly sporting events in this country than NFL football. We’re proud to be the exclusive Phoenix radio affiliate and excited for the incredible opportunity to air these high-profile NFL games, including the Super Bowl in February.” ….. After 24 seasons covering University of Central Florida football – most recently as sideline reporter and pre-game host – Jerry O’Neill is retiring from the radio team. He made the announcement on Marc Daniels’ show on UCF football flagship, iHeartMedia Orlando sports talk WYGM “The Game.” Taking O’Neill’s place as pre-game host and sideline reporter is Scott Adams; former UCF defensive lineman and NFL player Leger Douzable joins as analyst. Meanwhile, producer Chris Vasquez is boosted to executive producer, and assistant producer Tom Morgan will produce all men’s basketball and baseball radio broadcasts ….. The corporate director of programming of Forever Media stations in Wilmington (Delaware) and Salisbury-Ocean City (Maryland), Brad Austin, exits. In addition to his corporate duties, Austin programmed and did afternoons on WXCY “New Country 103.7.” He had been with WXCY the past six years and added corporate responsibilities three years ago. The Wilmington and Salisbury-Ocean City stations for which Austin was responsible included news/talk WDEL-AM & WDEL-FM; WXDE “News Talk 105.9”; sports talk WYUS “ESPN Delaware”; WSTW “Today’s Best Variety”; WAFL “Eagle 97.7”; classic hits-oldies WAVD “97.1 The Wave”; classic rock WNCL “Cool 101.3 Delaware’s Greatest Hits”; and gospel WFAI “Faith 1510.” ….. More than 300 members of Congress (or their spouses or family members) participated in this year’s NAB Congressional PSA Campaign. The program invites members of Congress and their families to be featured in free spots that address issues of importance to their constituents. The PSAs have been sent to radio and TV stations across the country. NAB executive vice president Dennis Wharton notes, “The NAB Congressional PSA Campaign provides legislators and their families an opportunity to share pro-social messages that can have a positive impact on communities across America. Local radio and TV broadcasters will be generously donating airtime for this initiative as part of our commitment to serving local communities.” NAB has hosted the biannual campaign in off-election years since 1985.

Top Choice For News Among Teens? YouTube. A June 14 – June 25 poll of more than 1,000 U.S. teenagers (13 – 17) conducted by nonprofit Common Sense, in tandem with SurveyMonkey, found that 54% of respondents get news at least a few times per week from social networking platforms including Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, while one-half do so from YouTube. As David Cohen writes in AdWeek, “Six of ten citing YouTube indicated they were more likely to get their news from celebrities, influencers, and personalities than from news organizations.” The preference for YouTube may best be explained that more than six of ten respondents stated, “seeing pictures and video showing what happened” helped them understand major news events, while roughly one of three would rather “read or hear the facts.” In a release detailing its findings, Common Sense notes that the news habits of teens, “reflect the diversity of the modern media landscape. While most news organizations maintain accounts on social media and other platforms, they are competing for attention with corporate brands, celebrities, influencers, and personal connections.” Two of three teens who do turn to news organizations say it helps them better understand what is going on; 53% of those who get news from social media expressed the same sentiment. Meanwhile, one of five believe getting news via social networks makes them more confused about current events. Common Sense chief executive officer James Steyer observes, “These findings raise concerns about what kind of news the next generation is using to shape their decisions. There are few standards for what constitutes news and how accurately it’s portrayed on the platforms teens use.” SurveyMonkey chief research officer Jon Cohen adds, “While it’s notable that teens rely heavily on platforms such as Facebook and YouTube to stay informed, their reliance on news from celebrities and influencers rather than journalists may have pernicious implications. It’s a bit of a paradox: Overwhelmingly, teens say that they are interested in keeping up with the news, but they’re not seeking out either traditional or new media to do so.”

Music Radio News and Career Moves. Yesterday at 5:00pm (Thursday, 8/15), iHeartMedia Indianapolis transitioned WOLT-HD2 (W248AW-FM) to CHR “97.5 “Kiss-FM.” Debuting commercial-free and featuring an air staff (KD, Rucker, Jake B, and Catalina) heard on a number of other iHeartMedia stations, “Kiss” will rely on a playlist from artists such as Drake, Ariana Grande, Halsey, Jonas Brothers, Bruno Mars, and Shawn Mendes. Market president Brett Beshore states, “We are thrilled to bring the ‘Kiss FM’ brand to Indy. The music, events, and personalities featured on ‘97.5 Kiss FM’ is the perfect formula and will contribute to building a great audience for our advertisers.” Senior vice president of programming for iHM Indianapolis Dave Hill comments, “Our listeners can now listen to their favorite songs and hit music they love without commercial interruption. ‘Kiss FM’ is going to energize our listeners and shakeup the [CHR] landscape.” WOLT-HD2 did not appear in Nielsen Audio’s July 2019 report for Indianapolis. Existing CHRs in the market include WZPL “99.5 ZPL” (6.0, #5, July 2019, 6+) and WNOW “Radio Now 100.9” (2.9, #14, July 2019, 6+). A third CHR, WYRG “Energy 93.9,” flipped to rock WNDX “93-X” two months ago (May 2019) …. Heard weekday mornings (5:00 am – 10:00 am) on Hearst Television Baltimore’s WIYY “98 Rock,” Justin, Scott & Spiegel are expanding to television this weekend. The first episode of their half-hour “Justin, Scott and Spiegel Shouldn’t Be On TV” will air immediately following “Saturday Night Live” on Hearst Baltimore’s WBAL-TV (channel 11). WIYY president and general manager Cary Pahigian declares, “Pairing Baltimore’s most colorful and imaginative radio show in this great time slot after ‘SNL’ is a terrific opportunity to reach our listeners on one of the country’s strongest NBC affiliates. Justin, Scott and Spiegel are ready to take full advantage of this great lead-in.” WBAL-TV president and general manager Dan Joerres remarks, “Creating this television program for broadcast on WBAL-TV 11 is a natural extension of our partnership with sister station ‘98 Rock.’ Like our shared partnerships with the Baltimore Ravens and Maryland Lottery, we’re always looking for new and innovative ways to serve our Baltimore viewers and listeners. Given the popularity of the live stream of Justin, Scott and Spiegel’s morning show, we saw an opportunity to develop this program for local fans.” Justin, Scott and Spiegel have been a morning show team since 2013 ….. Also in that Maryland market, WWMX “Mix 106.5,” Baltimore nighttime talent Neci Williams takes on music director duties there. Entercom Baltimore director of programming, music stations/WWMX PD Tom Cook remarks, “I’m happy to recognize Neci’s ability and talent with this promotion. She has a great ear for new music and really hears the art and flow when editing a log; being a music director has been a goal of hers for years.” Formerly with Washington, DC’s WHFS, Williams has worked for Baltimore’s “Mix” the past three years ….. Initiating this weekend is Premiere Networks’ two-hour “Hollywood Unlocked with Jason Lee,” the founder and chief executive officer of “Hollywood Unlocked.” He and co-hosts Melyssa Ford and DJ Damage will “keep listeners on the pulse of hip-hop and pop culture.” Miami rapper Trina guests on the first show and discusses “stripper rappers.” Among the 50 stations clearing “Hollywood Unlocked” are iHeartMedia urban contemporary outlets KRRL “Real 92.3,” Los Angeles; WGCI-FM, Chicago; KQBT “93.7 The Beat,” Houston; WRDG “96.7 The Beat,” Atlanta; WUSL “Power 99,” Philadelphia; WMIB “103.5 The Beat,” Miami; and WJLB, Detroit ….. Nine stations are added to the roster for Entercom’s “Channel Q” on the LGBTQ+ Talk Radio Network. The network brings the latest in LGBTQ+ news and information, pop culture, and new music. Entercom Southern California regional president and market manager Jeff Federman comments, “Channel Q’s already expansive reach nationwide is another step in the right direction as we aim to promote and support inclusion throughout our country. We remain as persistent about providing the LGBTQ+ community and its allies with a voice as we did when we first launched. We are proud to continue to expand our efforts into new markets.” Listeners can find Channel Q on the following stations via an HD Radio capable device: WSTR-HD3 “Star 94.1,” Atlanta (next month); WTDY-HD3 “96.5 TDY,” Philadelphia; WDZH-HD3 “98.7 The Breeze,” Detroit”; WDSY-HD3 “Y-108,” Pittsburgh”; WQMP-HD2 “FM 101.9, Orlando”; WXSS-HD3 “103.7 Kiss FM,” Milwaukee; WNVZ-HD2 “Z-104,” Norfolk”; WEZB-HD2 “B-97, New Orleans”; and WMQX-HD2 “Max 102,” Wilkes Barre-Scranton ….. In the summer of 1969, 400,000 people converged on a local farm in upstate New York to hear 32 top musical acts. The 600-acre farm was overwhelmed with intense heat, rain and mud. “Woodstock” became a legendary scene and spawned an Academy Award winning film, soundtrack album, and major hit song. On the 50th anniversary weekend, CUMULUS MEDIA’s Westwood One will have correspondent Steve Kastenbaum reporting from Bethel Woods, New York; 50-year old sound will be replayed from the Westwood One News archives. The golden anniversary will be celebrated with a half-hour Mike Moss-hosted special, “Woodstock: A Festival for the Ages.” The news retrospective will run Labor Day weekend and explore Woodstock’s legacy with archived audio clips, news reports, and interviews. In other Westwood One news, multi-platinum singer/songwriter Dierks Bentley will host the network’s annual four-hour “Workin’ Hard Country” music special over Labor Day weekend. Bentley will showcase work songs, summertime anthems, and current hits from his own catalog, as well as songs from (among others) Luke Bryan, Carrie Underwood, Jason Aldean, Florida Georgia Line, Maren Morris, and Keith Urban. Many of the artists will share stories about their pre-fame jobs ….. Starting one week from Monday (8/26), iHeartMedia San Diego hot AC KMYI “Star 94.1” premieres Jesse Lozano and Tati Santiago (“Jesse and Tati in the Morning”) as its 6:00 am – 10:00 am wakeup team. KMYI program director Joe Haze states the show will be “entertaining and San Diego-centric, focusing on relatability. It will give listeners a great variety of music to get their day started.” San Diego native Lozano began his radio career inside the iHM San Diego cluster as “Boy Toy Jesse” on CHR KHTS “Channel 93.3 FM” and moved to Los Angeles CHR sibling KIIS “102.7 Kiss FM” in 2007 for afternoon drive duties. He has been hosting “Jesse Lozano in the Morning” on “Star” and remarks, “I’ve been a fan of Tati’s for a very long time – I feel so lucky to be teaming up with her. Adding her brand to ‘Star’ mornings is an incredible opportunity; our listeners are in for a good time.” Honolulu’s KIKI-FM was the site of Santiago’s first radio job. Her on-air credits since KIKI include morning co-hosting responsibilities at WPGC-FM, Washington and iHeartMedia San Diego urban contemporary KSSX “Jam’N 95.7.” She comments, “Being able to work mornings with Jesse Lozano on ‘Star’ is something I could never have dreamed. I’m excited to interact, laugh, and dig the ‘sleepies’ out of my eyes with the San Diego community every morning.” Santiago will succeed Delana Bennett, who – as noted here yesterday (8/15) – is boosted to KMYI’s assistant program director/afternoon drive host (2:00 pm – 6:00 pm) ….. Assistant program director/music director DJ Q is elevated to content director at Alpha Media Louisville urban contemporary and urban AC siblings WGZB “B-96.5” and WMJM “Magic 101.3.” DJ Q is a 15-year veteran at that Kentucky operation.

 

 

July 2019 PPM Data. July 2019 ratings information has been released for Cincinnati, Austin, and Cleveland. Nielsen Audio’s July 2019 survey period covered June 20 – July 17. Managing editor Mike Kinosian (Kinosian@Talkers.com) provides his “Takeaways” from these three PPM-markets.

Cincinnati

Spoken-Word Formats – An increase of one-tenth to 9.2 (6+) by iHeartMedia news/talk WLW “The Big One” halts three straight sweeps without an increase that resulted in the loss of one-half share (9.9 – 9.5 – 9.4 – 9.4, 6+). The Reds flagship – which had a January-only stay on top – continues in the runner-up slot. Co-owned WKRC is off nine-tenths via three straight down or flat trends (3.6 – 3.5 – 2.7 – 2.7, 6+) and repeats at #13. Prior to June 2019 (2.7), the last time “55 KRC The Talk Station in Cincinnati” fell below a three-share was June 2018 (2.8).

As a result of six straight sweeps without an increase, sports talk cluster-mate WCKY “Cincinnati’s ESPN 1530” has lost more than 50% (-.7) of its 6+ AQH-share (1.2 – 1.0 – .9 – .9 – .8 – .6 – .5, flat at #22, 6+). The April 2019 through July 2019 topline for co-owned WSAI “Fox Sports 1360” is .4 – .3 – .3 – .4 (steady at #23, 6+).

In addition to ending at three a consecutive string of decreases that resulted in a -1.2 (3.7 – 3.1 – 2.6 – 2.5, 6+), Cincinnati Public Radio news/talk WVXU (2.8, +.3, 6+) progresses from #14 to #12.

Cincinnati Music Formats – On the heels of June’s mammoth -2.1 (11.7 – 9.6, 6+), Cumulus Media classic hits-oldies WGRR “103.5 Cincinnati’s Greatest Hits” answers with a +1.0 to 10.6 (6+) and is #1 the sixth sweep in succession. Furthermore, WGRR has registered double-digits (6+) five times in the last six ratings periods. Entering the June report, WGRR was +3.6 in five successive increases (8.1 – 9.6 – 10.2 – 11.1 – 11.3 – 11.7, 6+). After a December-only stay at #1, “Cincinnati’s Greatest Hits” spiraled by -1.8 in “Holiday” 2018 (9.9 – 8.1, 6+) and shifted to third. The three latest moves for Radio One urban AC WOSL are +.7 (3.2 – 3.9, 6+, May); -.8 (3.9 – 3.1, 6+, June); and +.9 (3.1 – 4.0, July, 6+). Not only does “100.3 Cincy’s R&B Station” return to the top ten (#11 to #9), it has its highest 6+-share (4.0) in more than five years (4.3, March 2014). Owing to five straight positive or neutral moves, Cincinnati Public Radio’s WGUC “Classical 90.9” triples (+1.2) its 6+-stat (.6 – .9 – 1.1 – 1.2 – 1.2 – 1.8, #18 to #17, 6+). Hubbard Broadcasting-owned WUBE has been on a wild ride lately. After logging three straight negative trends that accounted for a -2.1 (9.4 – 8.7 – 7.9 – 7.3, 6+), “B-105.1 Cincinnati’s Country” responded with a combined +1.5 in May/June (7.3 – 7.5 – 8.8, 6+), but erodes in July by -1.6 (7.2, flat at #3, 6+). June’s 8.8 was its best 6+-stat since January’s 9.4. It’s a somewhat similar scenario for Radio One urban contemporary WIZF. Four consecutive positive or neutral reports yielded a +.7 (2.7 – 2.7 – 2.9 – 3.2 – 3.4, 6+); “101.1 The Wiz” was down -.4 in May; bounced back with a June +.7; but regresses by -.7 in July (3.7 – 3.0, 6+) and exits the top ten (#9 to #11). Seven successive negative or neutral trends by Cumulus Media’s WFTK “96 Rock” have resulted in a cumulative -1.4 (4.0 -3.7 – 3.1 – 3.0 – 3.0 – 3.0 – 3.0 – 2.6, #12 to #14, 6+).

By dropping three-tenths to 2.2 (#14 to #15, 6+), country sibling WNNF “94.1 Nash FM” has its consecutive string of up or flat trends that netted a +1.1 stall at six (1.4 – 1.6 – 1.6 – 2.0 – 2.0 – 2.5 – 2.5, 6+). In three straight sweeps without an increase (3.8 – 3.7 – 3.7 – 3.2, 6+) iHeartMedia CHR WKFS “Kiss 107.1” has lost six-tenths and falls from ninth to tenth.

Austin

Spoken-Word Formats – A June/July +1.4 by news/talk KLBJ-AM vaporizes three straight drops that accounted for a -1.0 (3.8 – 3.7 – 3.1 – 2.8, 6+) as “News Radio 590 AM” reenters the top ten (#11 to #9).

Advancing from #20 to #18, Genuine Austin Radio sports talk KTXX “The Horn” has a February 2019 through July 2019 topline of 1.6 – 1.7 – 1.8 – 1.7 – 1.3 – 1.6 (6+). After notching a .4 (6+) in May, iHeartMedia’s similarly-formatted KVET-AM “1300 AM The Zone” is stuck on .5 (#24, 6+) in June and July.

A gain of nine-tenths (5.8 – 6.7, 6+) enables University of Texas at Austin-owned news/talk KUT to advance from fourth to second. Six of KUT’s seven shifts this calendar year include: +1.6 (January); -.6 (February); +.7 (March); -2.0 (April); -1.6 (May) and +.9 (July). June’s 5.8 was its lowest 6+-showing since April 2017 (5.8, as well).

Austin Music Formats – Up six-tenths (3.8 – 4.4, 6+), iHeartMedia rhythmic CHR KPEZ “102.3 The Beat” progresses from tenth to eighth with its highest 6+-share (4.4) in more than two years (4.7, June 2017). Four successive reports without a loss by alternative KROX net a +1.2 (2.6 – 2.9 – 3.3 – 3.3 – 3.8, 6+) as “101-X” climbs from #12 to #11. This (3.8) is its best 6+showing since September 2018’s 4.0. Off one-half share in May and then roaring back with a robust +1.1 in June, adult hits KBPA “103.5 Bob-FM” loses one-tenth in July (9.3 – 9.2, 6+) but is the market pacesetter the fourth month in a row. June’s 9.3 was its highest 6+ share since “Holiday” 2018 (also 9.3). Prior to April 2019, the last time “Bob” occupied the top spot was December 2018 (8.3, 6+). There’s as intriguing situation in the market’s three-way country tussle. For openers, Genuine Austin Radio’s KOKE-FM strings together its fourth straight sweep without a loss for a net gain of six-tenths (2.0 – 2.0 – 2.1 – 2.1 – 2.6, 6+). “Austin’s Country Alternative” jumps from #14 to #16 with its best 6+-stat (2.6) since February’s 2.7. At the same time, slipping by six-tenths and seven-tenths, respectively, are iHeartMedia country siblings KASE “Austin’s #1 For New Country,” (4.8, sixth to fifth, 6+) and KVET-FM “98.1 The Austin Texas Original” (4.5, flat at #7, 6+). KASE is a combined -1.0 in June/July (5.8 – 5.4 – 4.8, 6+), directly after +1.5 in three straight bumps (4.3 – 4.5 – 5.7 – 5.8, 6+). It plummeted by -1.9 in “Holiday” 2018; improved by +1.2 in January; and was -.6 in February. Likewise, KVET-FM is -1.3 in June/July (5.8 – 5.2 – 4.5, 6+), following May’s +.9; “The Austin Texas Original” was +1.2 in January (5.0 – 6.2, 6+). After posting six successive positive or neutral monthlies that yielded an impressive +2.1 (3.6 – 4.3 – 5.4 – 5.4 – 5.4 – 5.5 – 5.7, 6+), iHeartMedia CHR KHFI “96.7 Kiss-FM” surrenders roughly half that increase (-1.1) to 4.6 (fifth to sixth, 6+). KLBJ-FM “93.7 The Rock of Austin” loses six-tenths to 3.6, its lowest 6+-showing since “Holiday” 2018’s 3.2, and exits the top ten (#9 to #12). Following May/June’s combined +1.1(5.3 – 5.8 – 6.4, 6+), Entercom hot AC KAMX “Mix 94.7” forfeits roughly half that increase (5.9, -.5, third to fourth, 6+). Having scored a March +1.2, regional Mexican KLZT “107.1 La Z” is now a collective -2.7 in four subsequent decreases (6.7 – 5.9 – 5.1 – 4.4 – 4.0, 6+) and falls from eighth to tenth. With an April – May – June (6+) topline of 1.2 – 1.1 – .9 (6+), Genuine Austin Radio classic hits-oldies KTXX-HD4 vanishes from print.

Cleveland

Spoken-Word Formats – The five most recent fluctuations for iHeartMedia news/talk – and Indians flagship – WTAM “1100 Cleveland’s News Radio” are: -.6 (March); +.9 (April); -.7 (May); and +.5 (June); and another +.5 in July (5.6 – 6.1, eighth to sixth, 6+).

Upon resurfacing in print this past April, Salem Media Group news/talk WHK logged a .5 (6+) in April, May, and June, finishing at #19. “AM 1420 The Answer – News-Opinion-Insight,” however, is unlisted in July.

In an alternating down/up pattern that began in January (which includes June’s -1.0), Entercom’s WKRK “Sports Radio 92.3 The Fan” is a collective -2.3 (5.4 – 4.2 – 4.6 – 3.9 – 4.0 – 3.0 – 3.1, #14 to #13, 6+).

Notwithstanding that it repeats June’s 3.6 (6+), Ideastream-owned news/talk outlet WCPN departs the top ten (#10 to #12).

Cleveland Music Formats – Similar to its sports talk cluster-mate WKRK “Sports Radio 92.3 The Fan” (see above), Entercom hot AC WQAL “Q-104” is in an alternating down/up pattern. WQAL’s sequence started in January and includes July’s +.8 (3.6 – 3.9 – 3.2 – 3.8 – 3.4 – 4.2, #11 to #10, 6+). A boost of seven-tenths by iHeartMedia adult hits WHLK (5.4 – 6.1, 6+) propels “106.5 The Lake” from ninth to sixth with its strongest 6+-stat since January (6.1, as well). Improving by six-tenths each are Entercom adult contemporary WDOK “Cleveland’s Star 102” (6.0 – 6.6, sixth to fifth, 6+) and iHeartMedia CHR WAKS “96.5 Kiss FM” (#12 to #11). WDOK bounces back from June’s -1.5 which sent “Star” to 6.0, its weakest 6+-stat since January (6.0, as well). Meanwhile, “Kiss” is within 3.1 – 3.9 range for the sixth successive time (3.6 – 3.9 – 3.1 – 3.5 – 3.3 – 3.9, 6+). Its classic hits-oldies sibling WMJI “Majic 105.7 – Cleveland’s Greatest Hits” finishes on top the eighth straight sweep (9.8 – 9.2, 6+). Six of its recent shifts are: +2.8 (“Holiday” 2018); -1.7 (January 2019); +.8 (February); +1.0 (March); -1.0 (April); and -.6 (July). On the heels of June’s gain of six-tenths, Radio One urban contemporary WENZ suffers a setback more than four times that magnitude (7.0 – 4.5, -2.5, 6+) as “Z-107.9” tumbles from fifth to ninth. June’s 7.0 was its best 6+-showing since November 2017’s 7.2. When urban AC sibling WZAK gained three-tenths in June, it suspended five successive sweeps without an increase that resulted in a -1.2 (8.7 – 8.5 – 8.5 – 8.5 – 8.2 – 7.5, 6+). The July report indicates that WZAK is off by -1.1 (7.8 – 6.7) and continues in fourth-place. Three positive spikes in a row by iHeartMedia-owned WMMS netted a full-share (4.7 – 4.8 – 5.6 – 5.7, 6+) but “100.7 Cleveland’s Rock Station” coughs up two-tenths to 5.5 (6+) and dips from seventh to eighth. In May, WMMS reached the five-share level for the first time since October 2017’s 5.0.