Tag: "Mitch Albom"
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. This new episode titled, “Truth, Justice, and the American Way,” looks back at this past week of December 7 – December 11, 2020. The program features guests (in order of appearance): Kevin Casey, executive editor, TALKERS magazine; Michael Berry, talk show host, KTRH, Houston / Michael Berry Radio Network; Grace Curley, talk show host, WRKO, Boston / Howie Carr Radio Network; Steve Weisman, professor of law, Bentley University, Boston / founder Scamicide.com; Graham Mack, talk show host, Podcast Radio, UK; and Robbie Stevens, record producer / commentator, TalkersRadio. 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 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; WWTK, Sebring, FL; the Virginia Talk Radio Network; CRN Digital Talk Radio Network; Pioneer Valley Radio, 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.
NYPost: Craig Carton to Host ‘Responsible Gambling Show.’ According to a story in the New York Post, WFAN, New York afternoon drive co-host Craig Carton will host a Saturday show called “Hello, My Name Is Craig” that is being called a “responsible gambling show.” The show is a partnership between Entercom’s sports talk WFAN and problem gambling help network 1-800-GAMBLER. Carton said on WFAN, “They’re going to bring their expertise into it. I’ll tell the stories of gambling and the way my addiction manifested itself in the bad decisions I made, which became criminal.” It was the need to pay off gambling debts that caused Carton to create a phony concert tickets brokerage scheme that put him in prison for fraud after a November 2018 conviction.
WJR-AM, Detroit’s Mitch Albom Radiothon Raises $1.5 million for Local Charity. During Thursday’s daylong radiothon, WJR, Detroit afternoon drive host Mitch Albom helped raise more than $1.5 million for SAY Detroit – a local organization that helps the needy with health care, housing, food and education. The “9th Annual Mitch Albom SAY Detroit Radiothon” included appearances by special celebrity guests including Kate Hudson, Hugh Jackman, Katie Couric, Lily Tomlin, Hank Azaria, Tim Allen, and Anderson Cooper.
WGN-AM, Chicago’s Dean Richards to Return to Air After COVID Case. Chicago media writer Robert Feder reports that Windy City media personality and WGN-AM weekend talk host Dean Richards is returning to the air after a couple weeks off due to a bout with COVID-19. The 66-year-old Richards will broadcast from his home for the next week or two before returning to the Nexstar Media Group station’s studios. Richards tells Feder his symptoms were relatively mild and adds that he’s not sure how he caught the coronavirus because he was being very careful. “The moral of my story is no matter how careful you think you’re being, be ten times more careful than that. Because I thought I was being super careful. I know I was being super careful.”
News/Talk KBOI, Boise Holds Successful Toy Drive for Marine Corps Reserve Campaign. Last Thursday through Sunday (12/3-6), Cumulus Media’s news/talk “NewsTalk 670” KBOI, Boise and Idaho Central Credit Union hosted Idaho’s biggest toy drive to benefit the US Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots program for Treasure Valley children in need this holiday season. The event helped bring in more than 70,000 toys and $27,000 in cash donations. Pictured above (from l-r) are: US Marine Corps Reserve Charlie Company Marines Elmore and Perez, a smitten stuffed bear, Miss Idaho USA Katarina Schweitzer, and KBOI’s Mike Kasper and Nate Shelman.
WMAL-FM, Washington Fisher House Radiothon Raises More Than $360,000. During last weekend’s annual two-day WMAL Operation Fisher House Radiothon, the Cumulus Media news/talk station helped raise $368,000 for the Fisher House Foundation. WMAL listeners have donated more $7.5 million dollars over the last 15 years to support the efforts of the Fisher House Foundation to provide housing to families of injured military members who are undergoing treatment. Cumulus Media VP of news/talk and WMAL program director Bill Hess says, “We are humbled by the response of our listeners each and every year. Their response is incredibly heartwarming.”
COVID-19, Vaccines, Stats, and Protection Top News/Talk Story for Week of December 7-11. The fast-rising number of positive COVID cases in the U.S., the status of hospitals, hope for effective vaccines, and warnings about holiday get-togethers combined for the most-talked-about story on news/talk radio this week, landing atop the Talkers TenTM. At #2 this week was Donald Trump’s continuing efforts to overturn the election results. Coming in at #3 was Joe Biden’s transition appointments and nominations, followed by the Georgia senate runoff elections 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.
Music Radio News and Career Moves. Milwaukee urban contemporary “HOT 105.7” (WXSS-HD2) adds two air talents to the program schedule. Entercom announces that former crosstown WKKV-FM personality Promise is now hosting mornings while DJ Gee A moves from sister CHR WXSS-FM to afternoons on “HOT 105.7.” Entercom Milwaukee market manager Andrea Hansen says, “We’re excited to welcome Promise and DJ Gee A to our on-air lineup and introduce them to our listeners. Both have deep roots in this community with valued experience entertaining and connecting with the listeners of this city. We trust that combination will quickly resonate with our fans and round out our locally focused programming lineup.”…..The nationally syndicated “Ashley & Brad” show – hosted by Ashley Paige and Brad Abrell and produced by Skid Trax and distributed by Sun Broadcast Group – adds new affiliate stations as KFLX-FM, Chino Valley, Arizona; KPPT-FM , Depoe Bay, Oregon; KQBG-FM, Rock Island, Washington; and KHKM-FM, Hamilton, Montana add the program to their schedules.
Townsquare Media Reports Q4 2018 Net Revenue Up 12%; Net Revenue Rises 4.7% for Full Year of 2018. Note that those figures are not pro forma – they include the revenue from Townsquare Media’s July 2018 closing on three Trenton stations that didn’t exist for the company in 2017 – and they also include political advertising. Pro forma net revenue for the fourth quarter was $109 million – up 9.7% over the same period in 2017. Excluding political revenue, the figure was $103.3 million, an increase of 5.2%. For all of 2018, net revenue was $430.6 million. That’s up 4.7% from all of 2017. The pro forma figure for the whole of 2018 was $434.2 million, up 3.7%. Excluding political revenue, the yearly figure was $420.6 million, an increase of 2.8% over 2017. For all of 2018, Townsquare reports a pro forma net loss of $30.6 million, as compared to $8.2 million in the same period in 2017. The company says the decline in net income was driven by an increase in non-cash impairment charges in 2018, due in part to the revision of certain assumptions in the company’s annual testing for intangible impairment as a result of the company’s depressed stock price and market capitalization as compared to the prior year, among other factors. Net income was also impacted by a $9 million decline in income tax benefit, primarily related to the 2017 Tax Cut and Jobs Act. Townsquare CEO Bill Wilson states, “In 2018, we delivered net revenue growth of approximately 5% and Adjusted EBITDA growth of over 7%, driven by the impressive growth of our digital businesses, which now total $120 million in annual net revenue and thus nearly 30% of our total net revenue. Further, we beat our previously issued 2018 revenue guidance. The fourth quarter delivered the strongest year over year growth in 2018, with net revenue growth of 12%, and we saw sequential improvement in our advertising business throughout the year.”
Saga Communications’ Fourth Quarter Net Revenue Rises 4.7%. Reporting on both the fourth quarter and the full year of 2018, Saga Communications indicates net revenue was $32.9 million – up 4.7% — in the fourth quarter, compared to the same period in 2017. Income from continuing operations before tax increased $2.3 million to $6 million compared to $3.7 million last year. Operating income increased $2.1 million to $6 million and station operating expense increased $523 thousand to $23.8 million for the quarter. During the fourth quarter of 2017 Saga recognized an income tax benefit of $11.2 million compared to an income tax expense of $1.7 million for the same period in 2018. The income tax benefit in 2017 was primarily due to an $11.5 million reduction in our deferred tax liability as a result of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Looking at the full-year 2018 report, net revenue increased 5.7% to $124.8 million. Income from continuing operations before tax increased $3.1 million to $19.4 million compared to $16.3 million last year. Operating income increased $2.5 million to $19.7 million and station operating expense increased $6 million to $93.7 million for the twelve-month period. On a same station basis for the twelve months ended December 31, 2018 net revenue increased 1.1% to $116.5 million. Operating income increased $2.6 million to $19.4 million and station operating expense increased $642 thousand to $86 million. Saga Communications reports total bank debt of $20 million as of December 31, 2018 and had $40.7 million cash in hand as of March 11, 2019.
Erika Beasley Moves to Corporate Digital Content Director Role. Most recently, Erika Beasley has been serving as vice president and market manager for Beasley Media Group’s Fayetteville, North Carolina cluster. Now, she takes on the Tampa-based position corporate digital content director for local markets, reporting to chief digital content officer Lori Burgess. In this role she’ll be responsible for leading the company’s digital content expansion at the local level as well as working in tandem with digital program directors, programming teams, and talent on locally relevant content development and marketing initiatives. Burgess says, “Erika brings a positive, can-do attitude, and locally-centric focus to our digital initiatives. She was quick to embrace the company’s content transformation this past fall and expanded Fayetteville’s digital presence and audience growth for both WKML and WZFX. We fully expect Erika to leverage her experience to further our live and local mission in an effort to grow digital value for consumers and advertisers alike.”
Beasley Promotes Kent Dunn to RVP for Augusta and Fayetteville. Radio management pro Kent Dunn has been leading Beasley Media Group’s Augusta, Georgia station group that includes news/talk WGAC-AM/FM and sports talk WRDW since December of 2017. Now, he takes on leadership of the company’s Fayetteville, North Carolina cluster as Erika Beasley moves into a corporate position (see story above). Prior to returning Augusta, Dunn served as vice president and market manager of the company’s Tampa cluster. Beasley EVP and COO Brian Beasley states, “It is a privilege to promote Kent to the position of Regional Vice President within the company. His vast experience and leadership continue to raise the bar within the organization. We look forward to him continuing to lead Augusta and now Fayetteville into the future.”
Cumulus Star Larry O’ Connor Joins the Washington Examiner as Podcaster and Columnist. Bi-coastal, local talk radio host Larry O’ Connor, who is heard in mid-mornings on KABC, Los Angeles and in afternoon drive on WMAL-AM/FM, Washington, DC, is expanding his media footprint to the Washington Examiner news organization where he will be launching a regular print column and audio podcast. O’ Connor will also be helping spearhead a new Washington Examiner podcast channel that is currently on the drawing board.
Jennifer Keiper Lands at All-News WBBM in Chicago. Just a day after reporting news pro Jennifer Keiper had exited Cumulus Media’s crosstown news/talk WLS-AM, Windy City media writer Robert Feder reports that Keiper has signed with Entercom’s all-news WBBM-AM/WCFS-FM as a news anchor and reporter. Keiper served with WBBM in the past as a traffic reporter and part-time anchor/reporter. The Chicagoland native had done two stints with WLS-AM as well as having served as a Midwest correspondent for FOX News Radio.
WJR, Detroit Grabs Numerous Honors at MAB Broadcast Excellence Awards. Detroit news/talker WJR was honored with the Radio Station of the Year honor from the Michigan Association of Broadcasters at last week’s Great Lakes Media Show in Lansing. The Cumulus Media station has won the award three out of the last four years. WJR also took home nine other Best awards – including for Best Breaking News Story, Best Morning Show Broadcast (Frank Beckman), and Best Weekday Broadcast, Personality or Team (Mitch Albom) – as well as seven Merit awards. Cumulus Detroit VP and market manager Steve Finateri says, “We here at Cumulus Detroit couldn’t be prouder of our WJR team. The level of creativity and professionalism at all levels rivals that of any station in the country.
Sook Honored at 2019 Golden Mike Award Gala. Pictured above is honoree Perry Sook – the founder, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Nexstar Media Group – at the Broadcasters Foundation of America’s 2019 Golden Mike Award gala at the Plaza Hotel in New York City. The event raised more than $450,000, a record-breaker, including a $100,000 personal donation from Sook and his wife, Dr. Sandy Sook. The evening was hosted by NBC News’ Craig Melvin and featured a performance by country superstar duo Sugarland. Pictured above are (from l-r): BFoA chairman Dan Mason, Melvin, BFoA president Jim Thompson, Perry Sook, and his wife Dr. Sandy Sook.
Comrex Announces Firmware Updates. Users of Comrex’s ACCESS and BRIC-Link codecs should know that the company is releasing firmware version 4.3-p6 that includes an experimental version of a new HTML5-based user interface along with bug fixes and improvements. The company says that given that Adobe has announced the end of Flash support, and because most browsers disable Flash by default, it is providing an alternative to the Flash-based GUI with this new, fresh, more user-friendly interface. All current Comrex IP audio codecs by default still use the Flash interface, as well as Toolbox, Codec Commander, and Fleet Commander. Users who try the new HTML5 interface are encouraged to send a note to email@example.com if they notice potential bugs not listed in the “known issues” section of the 4.3-p6 Changelog. Firmware version 4.3-p6 also includes Comrex’s new HotSwap feature that lets users back up studio-to-transmitter links (STL) or other dedicated links with a wireless modem. ACCESS NX Rack and ACCESS MultiRack will both have the new HTML5 user interface, and will be featured at NAB 2019.
Trump Budget Request/Border Wall Funds, Sanders Press Briefing, Pelosi Impeachment Comment, 2020 Democratic Hopefuls/Young Dems Socialist Movement, Boeing 737 Max 8 Worries, Brexit Vote, Carlson-MMA Flap, Venezuela Blackout, and NBA/NCAA Action Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (3/11). The 2020 budget proposal from President Trump and the inclusion of funds for the U.S.-Mexico border wall; yesterday’s contentious press briefing from White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders; House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s statement declining to consider impeachment of President Trump; the group of Democrats vying for the 2020 nomination and the related socialist movement of younger Democrats; Boeing’s troubles with the new 737 Max 8; today’s Brexit vote and concerns Britain’s exit from the EU may never actually happen; FOX News Channel star Tucker Carlson’s spat with Media Matters over past radio show comments; the blackout in Venezuela continues as the U.S. recalls diplomatic staff; and NBA and NCAA basketball action were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.
Music Radio News and Career Moves. At Thursday night’s iHeartRadio Music Awards, the Backstreet Boys, Ella Mai, lovelytheband, and Marshmello with special guest Lauv will perform. Additionally, Travis Barker and Yungblud will join Halsey as special guest performers. The awards show takes place at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles and is being broadcast live on FOX Television and iHeartMediastations across the country…..Syracuse radio personality Scott “dXn” Dixon was inducted into the Syracuse Area Music Awards (SAMMYS) Hall of Fame on Thursday, March 7. Dixon is afternoon personality, APD/MD, and “Locals Only” show host at Cumulus Media’s alternative WAQX “95X.” Dixon has been covering and supporting the local music scene in Syracuse for the past 20 years…..Programming pro Chris Patyk is leading the curation of alternative and rock stations for TuneIn. He was most recently with Entercom in the San Diego market programming alternative KBZT “ALT 94.9” then-CHR KEGY “Energy 97.3” and adult contemporary KYXY…..Cox Media Group names David Abel vice president/market manager of its six San Antonio music-formatted radio stations. Abel joins the CMG San Antonio team from his most recent position as vice president of radio with Tulsa-based Griffin Communications…..LARadio.com is reporting the death of former KMET-FM, Los Angeles program director Richard Kimball. He was believed to have been 82. Programmed KMET and KWST “K-West” in the mid-1970s. He managed music acts including Emerson, Lake, and Palmer and David Cassidy before returning to radio with Westwood One in 1980. He later founded Artist Acquisitions Service Kompany…..Pictured below you can see the WWPR, New York-based, Premiere Networks-syndicated “The Breakfast Club” show as guests on FOX News Channel’s “FOX News @ Night” with anchor Shannon Bream. The trio of (from l-r) DJ Envy, Angela Yee & Charlamagne Tha God talked about their role hosting presidential candidates on their influential radio program.
By Ryan McCormick
Goldman McCormick Public Relations
NEW YORK — Phil Boyce has been senior vice president of Salem Radio Network & spoken word formats at Salem Communications since November 2014. Boyce served as vice president and director of spoken word format of Salem Communications from February 2012 to November 2014.
He is well known for his 14-year stint as program director of WABC, New York. During his time there, he was named vice president of news/talk programming for ABC Radio and later Citadel. He is credited with hiring Sean Hannity at WABC and taking his show into national syndication for ABC in 2001. Later he hired Mark Levin at WABC and took him into national syndication in 2006. He left WABC in October of 2008 shortly after WABC hit a 5 share 12+ in New York (Arbitron PPM Sept. 2008), the highest share the station has achieved since going talk from rock in 1982.
Before joining WABC, he programmed WJR, Detroit where he hired morning host Paul W. Smith and afternoon host Mitch Albom, both of whom are still working there. Read More
WBUR, Boston Talk Personality Tom Ashbrook Suspended During Investigation. “On Point” is a public radio talk show produced by WBUR, Boston – owned and operated by Boston University – and syndicated to almost 300 NPR affiliate stations. As reported by WBUR.org, host Tom Ashbrook has been suspended while the school and the station conduct an investigation into allegations, the details of which are not being specified by the station. It released this statement on Friday (12/8): “Yesterday, Boston University and WBUR received some allegations against Tom Ashbrook. Tom will be on leave from his duties at WBUR while an outside organization hired by Boston University examines these allegations. We will decide a course of action after getting the results of this investigation.” In the WBUR.org story, Ashbrook says he’s “stunned at the situation” and says he respects the process the school must go through in this situation.
Mark Kaye Hosting New Daily Talk Show on WOKV, Jacksonville. CHR radio pro Mark Kaye is now hosting a daily talk show on Cox Media Group’s WOKV-AM/FM, Jacksonville. Kaye is the morning drive host on the company’s sister CHR WAPE. His new talk show airs from 11:00 am to 12:00 noon, in between the Herman Cain show and Rush Limbaugh on the program schedule. Kaye has worked for WOKV in the past, hosting a weekend show.
Former Nevada Broadcasters Association Founding President Admits to Improper Behavior. Radio personality and former Nevada Broadcasters Association president Bob Fisher admits to engaging in “improper behavior” with teenage boys back in the 1980s. This was reported in a piece in Jewish Week that reveals the details of allegations by two men who were 18 and 16 at the time Fisher was a leader of the Pacific Southwest Region of United Synagogue Youth. In the story, Fisher admits to the allegations and says he is ashamed of his behavior, though he says he never forced himself on anyone. He also tells the paper of his dysfunctional childhood and being raped as a child and as a college student.
Nielsen and Cumulus Renew Deal for Ratings Services. The ratings giant is owed approximately $6.65 million by Cumulus Media – that figure was released by Cumulus as part of its Chapter 11 filing. But, Nielsen Audio knows that Cumulus needs its services to help sell its radio stations and national programming on Westwood One. This renewal means Cumulus continues to use the ratings service but will also have access to data from Nielsen Scarborough, enhanced talent analytics from Nielsen N-Score and national networks ratings from Nielsen RADAR. Cumulus EVP of operations Bob Walker comments, “Despite the abundance of media options, radio continues to lead the way in reach and ROI. We are excited to extend our agreement with Nielsen so that we can continue to leverage their vast datasets and analytical insights to provide the proof that we do indeed deliver the highest ROI of any local media to our advertisers.”
PPM Analysis: NBA Flagships. TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian presents a look at the performances of radio stations that serve as flagship stations for play-by-play broadcasts for NBA teams. Note that this isn’t a review of PPM ratings for game broadcasts, but for weekly 6+ AQH shares for stations that serve as flagships. A number of these stations serve as flagships for NFL and MLB franchises, as well. In addition to charts comparing stations’ ratings in numerous ways, Kinosian reports the station ranks for the Nielsen Audio’s November PPM survey and the five previous surveys. At the top of the heap, WBZ-FM, Boston ranked #3 (6+) in November. WTMJ, Milwaukee ranked #4 and WFAN, New York and WXYT-FM, Detroit ranked #5 in their respective markets. See the whole report here.
News Pro Chuck Rich Dead at 65. News pro Charles “Chuck” Rich died suddenly on Friday (12/8) at the age of 65. Chuck Rich was married to Washington, DC public relations pro Rita Rich. During his career, he held positions with WTOP-TV (WUSA), WTOP Radio, AP Radio and for well over 25 years, Westwood One Radio Networks. He also spent many years with Voice of America. He also was a contributing editor for Washingtonian Magazine.
Trump Jerusalem Recognition Reactions, California Wildfires, Iraq’s ISIS Liberation, Roy Moore Campaign, North Korea Nuclear Program, Trump-Russia Probe, Bitcoin Activity, Sunday’s NFL Games, and NBA Action Among Top News/Talk Stories Over the Weekend. The violent protests in the Middle East over President Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel; the raging California wildfires and authorities’ concerns there’s no end in sight to the Santa Ana winds; Iraq declares the country liberated from the ISIS forces that had held control over numerous Iraqi cities; the U.S. Senate campaign of former Alabama judge Roy Moore and allegations of his history of sexual predation; the North Korea nuclear program and the war of words between President Trump and Kim Jong Un; the Robert Mueller-led investigation into possible ties between Trump campaign operatives and Russian agents; the volatility of Bitcoin; Sunday’s NFL games and attendance figures; and NBA action were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio over the weekend.
Radio’s Greatest Storytellers. Pictured above at the Entercom broadcast center in Philadelphia are some of radio’s “greatest storytellers” gathered to appear on the Westwood One-syndicated “Sterling on Sunday” program starring Walter M. Sterling. From left to right are: Douglas Henderson Jr., Michael Tearson, Denny Somach, Gary R’Nel, Tommy McCarthy, Rasa Kaye, AJ Essington, Lee Harris, Ross Brittain, Sterling, and Allen Shaw. (Not pictured but on the broadcast were Tommy Woods and Dick Summer.) On the couch is Judy Anderson and Neil Pohl who had a major announcement: He asked her to marry him live on the air and she said “yes.” Sterling tells TALKERS that listeners heard how album rock radio was really invented by Allen Shaw. Michael Tearson revealed the early days of prog rock. Ross Brittain explained that HE was responsible for “Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer.” Doug Henderson described the work of his dad Jocko which aired on a Philly station and a New York City station thanks to a daily train commute. You can hear and download the show on www.waltermsterling.com Tuesday (12/12).
TALKERS News Notes. Radio executive Charlie Ferguson is retiring from Saga Communications where he’s been the VP and general manager at its Springfield, Illinois station group for the past three years. The 65-year-old Ferguson tells the State Journal-Register, “It occurred to me that I have not seen any of my seven grandchildren more than once a year for the last several years. This is probably the right time.” Saga operates news/talk WTAX and six other music formatted signals in the market…..CNN Money is reporting that SiriusXM is getting some “celebrity backlash” from Stephen K. Bannon’s return to the satcaster’s airwaves. As TALKERS reported last week, Bannon is back on the “Breitbart News Daily” morning program that’s part of the Patriot channel lineup and that has some celebs, including musician Melissa Etheridge, vowing not to appear on the radio service. Etheridge says she’s no longer going to do her “Melissa’s Basement” interview show that aired on the Volume channel. Actors Seth Rogan and John Leguizamo have also said they’ll not appear on SiriusXM anymore…..In Columbus, Ohio, sports talk host (and former NFL linebacker) Bobby Carpenter renews with RadiOhio’s sports talk WBNS-FM “97.1 The Fan” for a multi-year deal to continue co-hosting the midday “Carpenter and Rothman” show with Anthony Rothman.
Howie Carr Hosts NH Toy Drive. Regionally syndicated New England talk radio superstar Howie Carr held a special toy drive event in partnership with Two International Group in Portsmouth, New Hampshire on Friday (12/8). Carr broadcast his program from the lobby of Two International Group and collected toys for the Toys For Tots program. Carr is pictured here with four New Hampshire State Police Troopers who came by to donate toys. Howie Carr’s show is heard on more than 25 affiliate stations in New England and is seen nationwide on Newsmax TV.
Mitch Albom Radiothon Raises Record Dough for Detroit Charities. Pictured above, WJR, Detroit afternoon drive host Mitch Albom (second from right) celebrates the announcement of the record $1.25 million raised during last Thursday’s radiothon event to benefit Mitch Albom Charities (which benefits other Detroit charities). Post-radiothon donations have boosted that total to more than $1.8 million! The 15-hour show was hosted by Albom, with dozens of celebrity guests appearing, including: Dr. Phil, Hugh Jackman, Hank Azaria, Matthew Stafford and more.
Beasley NYC Holiday Bash. Last Friday (12/8), Beasley Media Group held its Holiday Soiree at the Park Central Hotel in New York City. The festivities included performances by SEAL and Brothers Osborne. Pictured above are (from l-r): Bruce Beasley, SEAL, Caroline Beasley and Brian Beasley.
KSFO, San Francisco Morning Host Brian Sussman is This Week’s Guest on Harrison Podcast. One of the nation’s hottest local morning radio talk show hosts, Brian Sussman of Cumulus Media O&O KSFO, San Francisco, is this week’s guest on the award-winning PodcastOne series “Up Close and Far Out with Michael Harrison.” Sussman discusses the challenges of doing competitive morning news/talk radio which requires finding the correct balance between hard political issues and more general interest areas of pop culture and fun. He also talks about his fascinating transition from being one of the most popular TV meteorologists in the Bay Area for many years to becoming a radio talker. Don’t miss this interesting and informative conversation! To listen to the entire podcast please click here or click on the “Up Close and Far Out” player box located in the right-hand column on every page of Talkers.com.
Music Radio News and Career Moves. St. Louis CHR KSLZ “Z107.7” names Jordan host of the morning drive program. The iHeartMedia SVP of programming for St. Louis A.J. says, “Jordan is one of the best radio talents in the industry. Moving him to mornings will help write the next chapter in ‘Z107.7’ history. During his time in St. Louis, Jordan has had tremendous success with afternoons and we are very excited for him to host a fun, compelling and local morning show for St. Louis.”…..In iHeartMedia’s Denver Region, changes take place in its rock radio formats. Effective today, KBPI, Denver “Rocks the Rockies” programming is being simulcast on KPAW, Fort Collins and KDZA, Colorado Springs. The station’s programming includes “Your Morning Show with Willie B” and air personalities Beardo and Colfax. At the same time, the KPAW, Fort Collins format will replace the adult contemporary format on KYWY, Warren AFB, Wyoming.
Former Radio Exec Perry Ury Passes at 91. Retired radio executive Perry Ury passed away at his home in Sarasota, Florida a week shy of his 92nd birthday. Ury led WRKO, Boston “Big 68” during its CHR days. He went on to manage all of the RKO radio stations. After serving with RKO, he managed WTIC-AM and WTIC-FM in Hartford until his retirement.
Howard Stern Renews with SiriusXM in Landmark 12-Year Audio/Video Deal. The wait is over – Howard Stern and SiriusXM are announcing the two sides have agreed to an extension to keep Stern’s live program on the satellite radio service for another five years. But the new deal also includes an agreement that will allow SiriusXM to use Stern’s extensive audio and video library – drawn from performances, specials, and shows spanning his more-than-30-year broadcasting career – for the next dozen years. The details of the video plans will be announced at a future date. This will be SiriusXM’s first venture into the video realm. Under the new deal, Stern’s show will continue to be broadcast live exclusively from 7:00 am to 11:00 am ET, with replays throughout the day, and on demand online and through the SiriusXM app. Additionally, Stern will continue to produce his Howard 101 channel, which includes current and classic episodes of the Howard Stern show as well as original special programming throughout the day. Stern is currently working a three-day week and the press release does not indicate any changes there so we’ll assume that remains the same. Also, the financial details are not being announced. Stern says, “As a broadcaster, it does not get better than working at SiriusXM and I’m truly excited for the future with this great company. I happen to think that its best days are ahead…I am living a dream here on satellite radio and Jim Meyer is my life partner and the baby we are about to have is our new streaming video app. The joy we are going to bring you in the very near future will make you feel like Christmas is every day. Ho, Ho, Howard…out.” SiriusXM president and chief content officer Scott Greenstein comments, “Howard is better than ever. Howard is a one-of-a-kind interviewer, who always delivers a provocative, engaging and headline-grabbing show. We look forward to providing fans even more and deeper ways to experience Howard, and his world-class talent and insights.” Noting that the deal has been worked on for months, Stern agent Don Buchwald adds, “Jim, Scott, and I have been discussing this arrangement for some time. Obviously, the terms and conditions of a deal of this nature required a lot of give and take, as well as creative thinking on everyone’s part, and I am grateful to them both for the hard work they invested to make this deal a reality. Howard and I are excited to enter into this cutting-edge and truly unique broadcasting agreement with SiriusXM that I believe will further the legacy of Howard Stern.”
Art Bell Tells TALKERS He Doesn’t Want to Be Off the Air. Legendary late night talk host Art Bell abruptly quit his most recent return to a regular program on Friday (12/11), stating that he’s been the victim of attempts on his life that make it impossible for him to do the program. The sudden end to “Midnight in the Desert,” which was steadily picking up affiliate stations, caused some in the business to think, “Oh no, here we go again.” But Bell tells TALKERS magazine he wants to be on the radio. Citing three incidents on October 21, November 23 and December 8, Bell says his wife has said, “Enough.” Bell says, “If this jerk is caught I will be back, if not I will wait for some time to pass without incident and then do some non-scheduled shows. I would like my fellow radio people to know this is not what I want.”
Kirby Wilbur to Host Late Morning Show on KVI, Seattle. Last month, Sinclair-owned KVI-Seattle announced that market conservative talk pro Kirby Wilbur would return to the air and KVI in the New Year. Now, the station announces Wilbur will host the 9:00 am to 12:00 noon slot, effective January 4. Wilbur will be joined for the first hour by current morning drive host John Carlson, then host the next two hours solo. The station is dropping Glenn Beck’s Premiere-syndicated show to make room for Wilbur. KVI program director Rick Van Cise states, “It’s clear our listeners want more local conservative conversation on Seattle radio. And who better to have back-to-back than two of the original Northwest conservative voices who made KVI great.” Wilbur has been off the radio for the past six years. Most recently he’s been the Washington director for Americans for Prosperity heading up the Washington, DC-based National Journalism Center. Wilbur comments, “I’m glad to be back with a new knowledge of the workings of the other Washington as we address local and national issues affecting all of us here.”
WOWO, Fort Wayne Switches FM Frequencies. This is a bit of a downgrade as far as market coverage is concerned since the move of news/talk WOWO, Fort Wayne’s FM simulcast is from class A FM WFWI to 75-watt translator W298BJ at 107.5 FM. The heritage station has been heard on WFWI’s 92.3 frequency since Federated Media signed it on in March of 2012. Program director Ryan Reker says, “It’s just a different place to listen to us. The change from 92.3 FM to 107.5 FM means our listeners will need to update their radios to get the same news, weather and talk coverage they listen to now.” WOWO-AM is heard very well throughout northeastern Indiana on its 50,000-watt 1190 kHz signal. No plans have been announced for WFWI-FM’s new format.
Talk Host Kate Delaney Talking Pete Rose Across the Country. Nationally syndicated general issues show host Kate Delaney is guesting on scores of radio shows today (12/15) because of her sports expertise and her knowledge of the Pete Rose decision that came down yesterday from the Major League Baseball commissioner’s office. The commissioner is continuing the ban on Rose working in baseball because of his cover-up of his gambling on baseball while manager of the Cincinnati Reds. Prior to her “America Tonight” program, Delaney spent a good part of her career in the sports media world covering 15 Super Bowls, 10 Final Fours, 10 U.S. Opens and numerous other sporting events. She also served as sports director of KRLD, Dallas and did a stretch at sports talk WFAN, New York. In addition to her regular show Delaney currently does a weekend shift on the NBC Sports Radio Network.
Odds & Sods. San Francisco all-newser KCBS-AM is being honored with a special finalist citation by the 2016 Alfred I. duPont-Columbia Awards for reporter Doug Sovern’s “Unholy Water,” a series of investigative reports that exposed the San Francisco Archdiocese’s installation of an illegal plumbing system at St. Mary’s Cathedral that poured water on homeless people at night to keep them from sleeping in the cathedral doorways, in the middle of the worst drought in California history. The CBS RADIO-owned station will be recognized at a ceremony hosted by veteran newsman Tom Brokaw at Columbia’s Low Library on January19, 2016…..Former WFED, Washington afternoon drive personality Francis Rose is handling a lot of fill-in work this week and next. Rose is sitting in for Larry O’Connor on WMAL-AM/FM, Washington’s “Drive at Five” all this week, and Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday next week. Rose is also in for Westwood One’s Jim Bohannon tonight and that company’s John Batchelor on Wednesday and Friday of this week…..The 27th annual Holiday Magic Radiothon on Bonneville’s KIRO-FM, Seattle to benefit Treehouse raised more than $512,000. Treehouse is a nonprofit organization that addresses the essential education and enrichment needs of kids in foster care…..In advance of tonight’s GOP primary debate, Salem Radio Network talk hosts Michael Medved (left) and Dennis Prager (right) are seen at right broadcasting from the Venetian Hotel in Las Vegas. Salem Radio Network is partnering with CNN to provide the audio to radio stations across the country. All five SRN daytime syndicated personalities are broadcasting from Las Vegas. Additionally, SRN is presenting both pre- and post-debate programs co-hosted by Hugh Hewitt and Mike Gallagher. Hewitt is also serving as one of the media panelists on the debate…..Premiere Networks announces it is broadcasting four college bowl games. Available to sports stations nationwide, Premiere will distribute the live play-by-play for the Air Force Reserve Celebration Bowl, Popeye’s Bahamas Bowl, Zaxby’s Heart of Dallas Bowl and Lockheed Martin Armed Forces Bowl, all of which are produced by RedVoice Productions LLC…..Cumulus Media announces that the 2015 Mitch Albom S.A.Y. Detroit Radiothon raised $1,002,748 during last Thursday’s event. Albom is afternoon drive host on the company’s news/talk WJR, Detroit. This was the fourth year of the charity broadcast and included special guests Hugh Jackman, Paul Stanley, Billy Bob Thornton, Jane Pauley, JK Simmons, Craig Ferguson, Alice Cooper, Dr. Phil, Tim Allen, Howard Schultz, Dave Barry, John Pizzarelli, Mayor Mike Duggan, Bruce Cornblatt, Kevin Eubanks, Charles Woodson, Kirk Cousins, Matt Stafford, Stan Van Gundy, Brad Ausmus, Dan Gilbert, and Bernie Smilovitz. Pictured here is Mitch Albom (at center) on the remote set during the radiothon.
2016 Presidential Race/Tonight’s GOP Debate, Government Shutdown Threat, Paris Climate Summit Agreement, Battle Against IS/Islamic Anti-Terror Alliance, Refugee/Immigration Issues, Looming Freddie Gray Verdict, and NFL Action Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (12/14). The activities of the candidates for president in 2016 and the build-up to tonight’s GOP primary debate in Las Vegas; the temporary spending bill and the threat of a government shutdown; the agreement that came out of the Paris Climate Summit and the larger topic of global warming; the battle against Islamic State and the news of a Saudi-led anti-terror coalition; the status of Syrian refugees and the issue of immigration policy in the United States; the expected verdict in the first phase of the Freddie Gray trials in Baltimore; and the weekend’s NFL action were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS.