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Thursday, June 17, 2021

| June 17, 2021

Weekly Reach, Average Audience Post Highest Levels In 14 Months. As the nation continues to reopen and returns to pre-pandemic routines, the industry experiences another month of radio listening gains. According to results from Nielsen Audio’s May 2021 PPM survey period, radio’s weekly reach is at its highest level since March 2020 and has grown each of the past four months. In the latest sweep (May 2021), radio’s reach surpassed 122 million weekly listeners, which is within two million of where it was before lockdown precautions took effect last year. In May 2021, radio’s Average Quarter-Hour (AQH) audience also scored its highest level since March 2020. Coinciding with vaccination rollouts and more normal commutes, AQH audience levels have increased 11% since January. PPM’s year-over-year (May 2020 – May 2021) weekly reach and AQH comparisons stand at a 108 index and 120 index, respectively. From a weekly reach perspective, May 2021’s radio audience is 8% larger than this time last year, while the AQH audience is 20% larger versus May 2020. May 2021 listening gains were widespread, with all major dayparts at or near AQH peaks since COVID-19 began. Weekday morning drive and weekends hit their highest audience levels in 15 months. May 2021’s weekend AQH (6.6 million) is 300,00 higher than March 2020’s 6.3 million, before the peak of the lockdown. Even though news/talk is lower than in prior months (12.6% in May 2021, compared to May 2020’s 13.6%), it does remain the most-listened to format in PPM markets. Registering its third gain in a row (4.1% – 4.2% – 4.4% – 4.6%), sports talk posts its highest AQH share since COVID-19 began, surpassing October’s high point (4.5%) when football season was in full swing.

Round One of May 2021 PPM Ratings Released. The first of four rounds of ratings data from Nielsen Audio’s May 2021 PPM survey has been released for 12 markets including: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Dallas, Houston, Atlanta, Philadelphia, Nassau-Suffolk (Long Island), Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, San Jose, and Middlesex-Somerset-Union (New Jersey). In presenting his “Ratings Takeaways” from this round of markets, Mike Kinosian notes that, while it erodes by one full-share from April 2021 (9.6 – 8.6, 6+), Cox Media Group Atlanta’s WSB-AM & WSBB is the only mainstream news/talk outlet to reach #1 (24th consecutive month, 6+). Meanwhile, the lone news/talk stations from the aforementioned metros that finished in the top 20 (6+) and posted an April 2021 – May 2021 increase are Cumulus Media’s WBAP, Dallas (3.2 – 3.4, 6+) and Townsquare Media-owned WKXW, Middlesex (3.8 – 4.1, +.3, 6+). Off one-half share and three-tenths, respectively are Audacy NYC news siblings WINS (3.2 – 2.7, #11 to #14, 6+) and Mets key station WCBS-AM (2.7 – 2.4, #15 to #16, 6+). Cumulus Media San Francisco sports talk KNBR (Giants) improves by eight-tenths (4.3 – 5.1, 6+) to progress from fourth to third. You can see Mike Kinosian’s complete “Ratings Takeaways” here.

IBA/Vipology Technology Contest Creates Nearly $1 Million In Local Sponsorships. During an eight-week “Key Word Contest” (April 19 – June 11), participating Independent Broadcasters Association (IBA) member stations collectively generated approximately one million dollars of revenue from local sponsors. IBA president/Adams Radio Group chief executive officer Ron Stone notes, “Hundreds of our member stations were able to generate new revenue from our group contesting. “Vipology’s technology, member execution/management, and data follow-up was nothing short of spectacular. We are planning a second contest for the fall; many participating groups have already indicated their interest in participating again.” Vipology CEO Chris Peaslee adds, “From Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania to Pittsburg, Kansas, I’m proud of our team for building the technology and supporting hundreds of stations across the country in their effort to sound big on-air and powerful in their markets.” Participating stations’ on-air personalities gave three key words throughout the day. Listeners were then encouraged to enter the words on the IBA “contest widget” on that station’s website. Listeners correctly identifying the day’s ‘Winning Key Word” became eligible for that day’s random drawing to win $1,000.

Shattuck Set To Join WTIC-AM. Formerly the senior editor of Lowell Massachusetts’ “The Lowell Sun,” Tom Shattuck will become the mid-day host (10:00 am – 2:00 pm) on news/talk WTIC-AM “1080 News Talk” next Monday (6/21). The Audacy Hartford outlet will feature all-local programming from 5:00 am to 6:00 pm. Audacy Hartford senior vice president/market manager Stephanie Perl opines, “Radio is best when it is local, when we can discuss and look at the local issues affecting our listeners. Being able to expand our local weekday programming further separates WTIC-AM from other radio stations in the state and we look forward to unveiling this new slate of content to our audience.” According to Shattuck, “[WTIC-AM] has been serving the people of Connecticut for almost 100 years. I’m truly honored to be given the opportunity to contribute to the legacy of this great station. These are extraordinary times and I look forward to talking about our politics and culture with the thoughtful, astute WTIC-AM audience.” Shattuck previously was editorial page editor of The Boston Herald and executive producer of Boston Herald Radio. In addition, he spent four years at Boston’s WTKK as executive producer of the afternoon drive show and was a content manager, web designer, and executive producer at cross-town news/talk WRKO. In other WTIC-AM changes, morning show co-host Brian Shactman will add “Extra Time with Brian.” As of next Monday (6/21), the station’s revised 5:00 am – 6:00 pm lineup will be: “WTIC Sunrise Special” (5:00 am – 5:30 am); “Mornings with Ray and Brian” (5:30 am – 9:00 am); “Extra Time with Brian” (9:00 am – 10:00 am); “The Tom Shattuck Show” (10:00 am – 2:00 pm); and “The Todd Feinburg Show” (2:00 pm – 6:00 pm).

TALKERS 2021 Was a Success! The 24th annual installment of the talk media industry’s longest running and most important conference, the Talkers Convention, took place last Friday (6/11) on the campus of Hofstra University in Hempstead, New York. The event was a presentation of TALKERS in association with Hofstra’s multi-award-winning radio station, WRHU. More than 50 industry leaders from talk radio and cable news/talk TV spoke during a non-stop day of presentations and panel sessions. Due to strict regulations adhering to COVID-19 protocols, attendance was limited to a sellout crowd of 175 people which was reached about a week prior to the event. TALKERS publisher Michael Harrison comments, “We were delighted to be able to join forces again with our colleagues at Hofstra – the site of our very successful 2016 event – and be able to actually present a live conference in an extremely COVID-19 compliant environment which Hofstra was equipped to provide. The convention achieved its goal to boldly address key existential issues facing the talk radio and talk media industries at this dramatically critical juncture.” TALKERS will be posting extensive coverage of the event in the days to come including video documentation recorded under the direction of Art Vuolo covering every speech, presentation and panel discussion. Stay tuned for details.

TALKERS News Notes. After a five-year run at KNBR “The Sports Leader” and KTCT “KNBR 1050,” program director Jeremiah Crowe is set to depart the Cumulus Media sports talk facilities the middle of next month. A new assignment has not been announced for Crowe, who is reportedly relocating to Las Vegas … Starting next Wednesday (6/23) at 9:00 am, Audacy Chicago sports talk WSCR “670 The Score” will air a 24-hour “What About Chicago?” radiothon. In partnership with former Chicago Bears player Sam Acho, the radiothon will benefit Athletes For Justice and the Austin Harvest program. WSCR afternoon talent Danny Parkins comments, “I hate when people who don’t care about our city ask ‘What about Chicago?’ in bad faith. The name ‘What About Chicago’ is a defiant response and this radiothon will hopefully highlight what Chicago is really about: A Chicago radio station partnering with a Chicago charity with a mission to help improve the lives of Chicago kids in a Chicago neighborhood.” … In acknowledgement for its protest coverage following the death of George Floyd, Audacy San Francisco all-news KCBS-AM & KFRC has won a national Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) Sigma Delta Chi award for “Best Radio Breaking News Reporting.” KCBS-AM & KFRC director of news & programming Jennifer Seelig comments, “I’m incredibly proud of my team’s thoughtful and compelling protest coverage. On behalf of everyone at KCBS-AM & KFRC, I’d like to thank SPJ for this prestigious honor. [We strive] to deliver comprehensive coverage of stories that resonate with our audience. This recognition underscores our unwavering commitment to our community.” KCBS-AM & KFRC was the only commercial station in the country to win in any category … Even though its officials have not released an official statement, Cox Media Group continues to rectify digital damage apparently caused by a ransomware attack. Those trying to stream a CMG station hear the following, “This stream is currently unavailable and we are working diligently to bring it back online. Our radio stations continue to broadcast 24/7; you can listen to us over the air – thanks for your patience.” Cox Media Group news/talk outlets include WSB-AM & WSBB, Atlanta; WHPT, Tampa, WDBO, Orlando; and WOKV-FM, Jacksonville.

Facebook Censors Harry Hurley’s “Heavy Hundred” Post.  A post regarding Townsquare Media Atlantic City news/talk WPGG “WPG Talk Radio 95.5 FM & 1450 AM” morning host Harry Hurley being named to the TALKERS list of the 100 Most Important Radio Talk Show Hosts in America (“Heavy Hundred”) has been censored by Facebook. In an article posted this morning on the “WPG Talk Radio” website, Hurley (pictured with TALKERS publisher Michael Harrison at TALKERS 2021) says that his story about receiving the honor was taken down by the social media giant with the explanation that it does not meet Facebook’s community standards and that the URL to the feature is considered spam. To read the entire article, please click https://wpgtalkradio.com/facebook-censored-my-post-about-talkers-magazine-honor/. 

Now Saluting “Kentucky Colonel” Roten. WVHU “News Radio 800” morning talk host Tom Roten was recently presented a plaque commissioning him as a Kentucky Colonel, the highest honor awarded by the Commonwealth of Kentucky. Commissions as Kentucky Colonels are presented for contributions to the community, state, or nation, and for special achievements of all kinds. The honor stunned Roten, who happened to be emceeing a grant award ceremony. Kentucky Colonels executive director Sherry Crose spoke of Roten’s commitment to the community and years of promoting charitable organizations and then made the surprise presentation. Having just marked his 20th anniversary at the iHeartMedia Huntington, West Virginia – Ashland, Kentucky station, Roten remarked, “This is such a tremendous honor – I am very grateful.” Roten has interviewed hundreds of guests from the region including many from the Commonwealth. He regularly talks to state and federal lawmakers from the Bluegrass State and speaks to representatives of many Kentucky charitable groups. For over 10 years, Roten served as public service director for iHeartRadio’s Huntington-Ashland cluster and has written/produced hundreds of PSAs for non-profit organizations. Approximately 30 Eastern Kentucky charities received a portion of $2.1 million in grants that the Kentucky Colonels will award this year. Kentucky Colonels are that state’s ambassadors of goodwill and fellowship around the world.

Total Subscribers To Paid Audio Services Double in Six Years. According to data from Edison Research’s “Share of Ear,” 47% of Americans 13+ now subscribe to at least one paid audio service. That’s just over double what it was in 2015, when 23% had a paid subscription. Edison Research president Larry Rosin comments, “While much of this doubling of the numbers is the redirection of money that was going to physical music formats to music streaming subscriptions, there is also the trend of more people paying to avoid commercials. I believe we’ll see more subscription efforts in the future, particularly from radio companies. Bauer Media in the U.K. recently launched a subscription radio service that offers commercial-free versions of their radio brands and other content. Such efforts are likely to be launched in the U.S. as well.” Growth has come across the board from SiriusXM Satellite Radio and Audible audiobook subscriptions to music streaming services such as Spotify Premium, Apple Music, and Pandora Premium or Plus.

KCUR Enlists Edgell As Midwest Newsroom Managing Editor. Effective July 6, public radio news/talk WFYI, Indianapolis project manager/assistant editor Holly Edgell will join University of Missouri-Kansas City’s similarly-programmed KCUR, Kansas City as managing editor of the Midwest Newsroom. KCUR general manager Sarah Morris states, “We are thrilled to have had such a strong pool of candidates and delighted that Holly will be joining the Midwest Newsroom as a KCUR employee. Holly has extensive leadership in working with newsrooms across the midwest and beyond. She will help form and create a highly functional and collaborative team for the hub.” NPR managing editor for collaborative journalism Kenya Young adds, “We’re excited to see Holly join our team of stellar managing editors leading the hub newsrooms across the country. Holly at the helm ensures our mission to plan shared coverage and create stories that reach local, regional, and national audiences. Holly will be an agent of change in the midwest region; I look forward to seeing how she shapes collaborative journalism within our network.” KCUR is lead partner in the NPR-formed Midwest Newsroom, a collaborative among Nebraska Public Media; Iowa Public Radio; St. Louis Public Radio; and NPR.

iHeartPodcast Network Adds Three True Crime Mysteries. The new entries include: “Missing On 9/11”; “After The Uprising: The Death Of Danye Dion Hones”; and “Algorithm.” From the producers of “Missing In Alaska,” “Missing On 9/11” traces the whereabouts of a woman living near the World Trade Center who disappeared on that horrific day. John Duffy and Ray Nowosielski-hosted “After The Uprising” is an 11-part series that examines the truth behind the hanging death of a St. Louis Black Lives Matter activist. From iHeartMedia and Tenderfoot TV, Ben Kuebrich-hosted “Algorithm” is an examination of a reporter’s algorithm he claims can detect serial killers.

Friday, May 21, 2021

| May 21, 2021

NOW POSTED: This Weekend’s Installment of “The Michael Harrison Wrap: An Overview of the National Conversation.” The latest installment of the 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,“Rebranding the Unidentifiable,” looks back at this past week of May 17-21, 2021. The program features guests (in order of appearance): Kevin Casey, executive editor, TALKERS magazine; Harry Hurley, talk show host, WPG, Atlantic City; Steve Weisman, law professor, Bentley University, Boston / founder, Scamicide.com; Dr. Renee Kohanski, forensic psychiatrist / commentator, MDedge Psychcast; Alan Stock, talk show host / commentator, KXNT, Las Vegas; and Victoria Jones, executive director, DC Radio Company.  The 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, 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; WGMD, Rehoboth Beach, DE; WCHM, Clarkesville, GA;  WPHM, Port Huron, MI; KSYL, Alexandria, LA; KTOE, Mankato, MN; WCED, DuBois, PA; K-NEWS 101.3, Owensboro, KY; WWTK, Sebring, FL; WSAR-AM/FM, Fall River, MA; WIZM-AM/FM, La Crosse, WI; WMVA, Martinsville, VA; the Virginia Talk Radio NetworkCRN Digital Talk Radio Network; the iHeart Podcast NetworkPioneer 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.

Round Four of April PPM Survey Released. The fourth and final round of ratings information from Nielsen Audio’s April 2021 PPM survey has been released for 12 markets including: Austin, Raleigh, Indianapolis, Milwaukee, Nashville, Providence, Norfolk, Jacksonville, West Palm Beach, Greensboro, Memphis, and Hartford. Nielsen’s April 2021 sweep covered April 1 – 28. TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian presents his Ratings Takeaways from this round of markets. Waterloo Media’s news/talk KLBJ-AM, Austin adds six-tenths to finish the April survey with a 5.7 share (weekly, 6+ AQH share) and remains ranked #4 in the market. In Indianapolis, Emmis’ WIBC-FM falls from #3 to #4 after dropping six-tenths and posting a 6.6 share. The start of the baseball season helps Good Karma Brands’ news/talk WTMJ-AM (Milwaukee Brewers flagship) add 4.1 shares for a 9.7 share finish that rockets the station from #5 to #1 while iHeartMedia’s crosstown WISN-AM sheds six-tenths and falls from #2 to #4. Cox Media Group’s WOKV-FM, Jacksonville stays ranked #3 after dropping just one-tenth to a 7.8 share. You can see Mike Kinosian’s complete Ratings Takeaways from this group of markets (and the three previous market groups) here.

45 Joins the Joe Pags Show. Pictured above is Compass Media Networks nationally syndicated talk show host Joe “Pags” Pagliarulo (left) in a video still from his radio program in which he interviewed former President Donald Trump. Pags conducted the interview and spread it out over two days of his program. He’s also made it available at his joepags.com site.

FEATURE STORY: Creesh, We Hardly Knew Ye… Longtime radio personality and talk show host Mark Wainwright – most recently morning host at WSYR, Syracuse – authors this fascinating tale of a late-night television show that might have put the name Don “Creesh” Hornsby into the same ranks as American entertainers Milton Berle, Sid Caesar, and Johnny Carson, yet it didn’t. Wainwright was inspired to research and write this story by the CNN series “The Story of Late Night” that he says, “overlooked both ‘Broadway Open House’ and the brilliant young comedian/host who was stricken by tragedy on the eve of his network television debut.” Hornsby was that California-based comic tapped by NBC in 1950 to host a new late-night variety show that never took off as planned. Read Wainwright’s feature story about what went wrong here.

Westwood One’s Dan Bongino Show to Launch on Monday. On Monday (5/24), Cumulus Media’s Westwood One launches the nationally syndicated “Dan Bongino Show” in the 12:00 noon to 3:00 pm ET daypart. The former Secret Service agent has risen to the status of conservative media star based on the success of his eponymous podcast and his appearances on FOX News Channel. The new show is being carried on most of Cumulus Media’s news/talk stations that used to carry “The Rush Limbaugh Show.” Some of the 115 affiliate stations at the launch will include: KABC-AM, Los Angeles; WLS-AM, Chicago; WBAP-AM, Dallas; KSFO-AM, San Francisco; KSEV-AM, Houston; WMAL-FM, Washington, DC; KTTH-AM, Seattle; and WJR-AM, Detroit. During the second hour of this show on Monday, Bongino will interview former President Donald Trump

Westwood One Wins Deadline Club Award for ‘New York City Protests’ Report. The news report “New York City Protests” by correspondent Steve Kastenbaum has won a Deadline Club Award in the Radio or Audio Spot News Reporting category for Cumulus Media’s Westwood One. The story aired as part of America in the Morning’s extensive reporting on the unrest in the aftermath of the death of George Floyd. The Deadline Club is the New York City chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. The Deadline Club’s journalism competition began in 1957. In announcing the award to Westwood One, the judges noted, “Steve Kastenbaum’s reporting on the civil rights protests in New York City over this past summer demonstrated strong, as well as balanced, reporting. The ‘day-of’ reporting was comprehensive and superb, but the follow-up reporting on peaceful protesters diffusing tensions with police was equally crucial, painting a fuller picture and therefore rendering the story in all the complexity it entailed.”

COVID-19 Vaccine Hesitancy and Mask Controversy Top News/Talk Story for Week of May 17-21. The hesitancy among some Americans to get the COVID vaccine and the confusion surrounding the CDC’s mask guidelines combined as the most-talked-about story on news/talk radio this week, landing atop the Talkers TenTM. At #2 this week was the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, followed by the January 6 Commission debate and the criminal investigation into the Trump Organization tied at #3. 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.

April 2021 PPM Ratings Takeaways – Part Four

| May 21, 2021

April 2021 PPM Data – Information for the April 2021 survey period has been released for Austin; Raleigh; Indianapolis; Milwaukee; Nashville; Providence; Norfolk; Jacksonville; West Palm Beach; Greensboro; Memphis; and Hartford.

Nielsen Audio’s April 2021 sweep covered April 1 – 28.

In addition to providing “Takeaways” for spoken-word stations finishing in their respective markets’ top twenty, TALKERS magazine, managing editor Mike Kinosian notes each particular city’s #1 station (6+), as well as greatest (6+) gains and losses.

All comparisons noted are March 2021 – April 2021 (6+).

AUSTIN

News/Talk: Waterloo Media-operated KLBJ-AM “News Radio” 5.1 – 5.7, +.6, remains at #4

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Genuine Austin Radio’s KTXX “The Horn” 1.2 – 1.4, +.2, #20 to #19

Public Radio News/Talk: University of Texas-owned KUT steady at 8.9, third to second

Number One 6+: Waterloo Media-operated adult hits KBPA, second month in a row, 9.3 – 9.6, +.3

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Increase: country KOKE-FM (+1.2)

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Decrease: adult contemporary KKMJ (-2.4)

RALEIGH

News/Talk: iHeartMedia’s WTKK “106.1 FM Talk” 5.2 – 5.0, -.2, sixth to seventh

Curtis Media Group-owned WPTF “News Radio 680” 2.0 – 1.8, -.2, flat at #16

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Capitol Broadcasting’s WCMC-FM “99.9 FM The Fan” 3.1 – 2.3, -.8, stays at #14

Public Radio News/Talk: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill-owned WUNC 9.1 – 9.6, +.5, repeats at #1

Number One 6+: public radio news/talk WUNC, sixth straight month, 9.1 – 9.6, +.5

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Increase: CHR WDCG (+.8)

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Decrease: gospel WNNL (-1.0)

INDIANAPOLIS

News/Talk: Emmis’ WIBC “93.1 FM Indy’s Mobile News” 7.2 – 6.6, -.6, third to fourth

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: WIBC cluster-mate WFNI “The Fan” 4.7 – 5.9, +1.2, eighth to seventh

iHeartMedia’s WNDE “Fox Sports 1260” .6 – .5, -.1, flat at #20

Public Radio News/Talk: Metropolitan Indianapolis Public Broadcasting’s WFYI 5.1 – 4.9, -.2, seventh to eighth

Number One 6+: Cumulus Media adult hits WJJK, third successive month, 10.0 – 10.8, +.8

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Increase: sports talk WFNI (+1.2)

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Decrease: urban AC WTLC-FM (-1.2)

MILWAUKEE

News/Talk: Good Karma Brands-owned WTMJ  “Wisconsin’s Radio Station” (Brewers) 5.6 – 9.7, +4.1, fifth to first

iHeartMedia’s WISN “News Talk 1130” 8.0 – 7.4, -.6, second to fourth

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: iHeartMedia’s WRNW “97.3 The Game” 1.1 – 1.3, +.2, #18 to #17

Good Karma Brands’ WKTI “ESPN Milwaukee” flat at .7, #22 to #20

Public Radio News/Talk: University of Wisconsin-owned WUWM 4.3 – 4.0, -.3, eighth to ninth

Number One 6+: Good Karma Brands news/talk WTMJ, first month, 5.6 – 9.7, +4.1

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Increase: news/talk WTMJ (+4.1)*

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Decrease: news/talk WISN and rock WHQG (both -1.0)

*Represents the highest (6+) gain by any station in all 48 PPM markets (March 2021 – April 2021)

NASHVILLE

News/Talk: Cumulus Media’s WWTN “Super Talk 99.7” 6.9 – 7.1, +.2, fourth to third

iHeartMedia-owned WLAC “Talk Radio 1510” 1.7 – 2.2, +.5, unchanged at #17

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Cumulus Media’s WGFX “104.5 The Zone” 3.5 – 3.1, -.4, flat at #12

Public Radio News/Talk: Nashville Public Radio’s WPLN-FM 4.0 – 3.8, -.2, steady at #10

Co-owned WPLN-HD3 Stream .6 – 1.0, +.4, #22 to #19

Number One 6+: Midwest Communications adult hits WCJK, fourth straight month, 9.3 – 8.7, -.6

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Increase: country WSM-FM and urban contemporary WUBT (both +1.4)

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Decrease: country WKDF and classic rock WNRQ (both -.7)

PROVIDENCE

News/Talk: Cumulus Media’s WPRO-AM & WEAN “News Talk 630 AM & 99.7 FM” 5.1 – 4.8, -.3, fifth to sixth

News – Talk: iHeartMedia-owned WBZ-AM “1030 News Radio” 1.5 – 1.3, -.2, #15 to #16

Sports Talk: Beasley Media Group’s WBZ-FM “98.5 The Sports Hub” 4.1 – 4.2, +.1, locked at #7

Audacy-owned WVEI “Sports Radio 103.7” 2.8 – 3.2, +.4, unchanged at #9

Public Radio News/Talk: WGBH Educational Foundation’s WGBH 2.6 – 3.1, +.5, #11 to #10

Rhode Island Public Radio-owned WNPN 2.7 – 2.0, -.7, #10 to #11

Number One 6+: iHeartMedia rock WHJY, fourth consecutive month, 9.2 – 8.4, -.8

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Increase: CHR WPRO-FM (+.9)

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Decrease: rock WHJY (-.8)

NORFOLK

News/Talk: Commonwealth Radio’s WNIS “News Talk AM 790” 3.6 – 4.0, +.4, tenth to eighth

News: iHeartMedia-owned WNOH “BIN 105.3 Because Truth Matters” .9 – 1.3, +.4, #21 to #18

Sports Talk: Max Broadcast Group Holdings’ WVSP “ESPN 94.1 FM” 1.6 – 1.3, -.3, #17 to #18

Public Radio News/Talk: None in the top twenty

Number One 6+: Audacy urban AC WVKL, 30th consecutive month, 13.4 – 13.3, -.1

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Increase: classic rock WAFX (+.7)

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Decrease: rhythmic hot AC WMOV (-.9)

JACKSONVILLE

News/Talk: Cox Media Group’s WOKV-FM “104.5 Jacksonville’s News & Talk” 7.9 – 7.8, -.1, unchanged at #3

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: None in the top twenty

Public Radio News/Talk: WJCT, Inc.-owned WJCT  5.6 – 5.3, -.3, remains in seventh-place

Number One 6+: Cox Media Group classic hits-oldies WJGL, second month in a row, 9.6 – 10.3, +.7

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Increase: adult contemporary WEZI (+1.1)

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Decrease: country WGNE (-.5)

WEST PALM BEACH

News/Talk: iHeartMedia’s WJNO “News Radio 1290” 3.1 – 3.0, -.1, stays at #9

Hubbard Broadcasting-owned WFTL “News Talk 850” 2.1 – 2.0, -.1, flat at #13

iHeartMedia’s WZZR “92.1 Real Radio” 1.9 – 2.0, +.1, #14 to #13

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: None in the top twenty

Public Radio News/Talk: Dade County School Board-owned WLRN 3.9 – 4.3, +.4, seventh to sixth

Number One 6+: Hubbard Broadcasting hot AC WRMF, 13th straight month, 8.4 – 10.4, +2.0

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Increase: hot AC WRMF (+2.0)

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Decrease: classic hits-oldies WEAT (-1.0)

GREENSBORO

News/Talk: iHeartMedia’s WPTI “News Talk 94.5” 3.5 – 4.1, +.6, locked at #9

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Curtis Media Group-owned WSJS & WPCM 600 AM & 920 AM” .4 – .5, +.1, steady at #15

Co-owned WMFR “Triad Sports Network” .0 – .1, +.1, #17

Public Radio News/Talk: Wake Forest University’s WFDD 3.5 – 3.0, -.5, #9 to #11

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill-owned WUNC 1.7 – 2.4, +.7, unchanged at #13

Number One 6+: Audacy urban AC WQMG, fourth straight month, 11.5 – 10.0, -1.5

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Increase: rhythmic CHR WJMH (+.8)

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Decrease: urban AC WQMG (-1.5)

MEMPHIS

News/Talk: iHeartMedia’s WREC “News Talk 600 AM” 3.6 – 3.7, +.1, eighth to tenth

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Audacy-owned WMFS “Sports Radio 92.9” 3.0 – 3.5, +.5, #11 to #12

Co-owned WMC-AM “ESPN 790 AM” .2 – .3, +.1, flat at #18

WMFS’ internet stream .2 – .1, -.1, #18 to #19

Public Radio News/Talk: Mid-South Public Communications’ WKNO 2.0 – 1.9, -.1, #13 to #14

WKNO-HD2’s internet stream .2 – .1, -.1, #18 to #19

Number One 6+: iHeartMedia urban AC KJMS, second consecutive month, 9.5 – 9.9, +.4

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Increase: gospel WHAL (+1.3)

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Decrease: urban contemporary WHRK (-.4)

HARTFORD

News/Talk: Audacy’s WTIC-AM “News Talk 1080” 5.7 – 5.1, -.6, seventh to eighth

Red Wolf Broadcasting-owned WDRC-AM “The Talk of Connecticut” .7 – 1.0, +.3, #16 to #15

iHeartMedia’s WPOP “News Radio 1410 AM & 100.9 FM” flat at .2, #19 to #18

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: iHeartMedia-owned WUCS “97.9 ESPN” 1.3 – 1.1, -.2, #13 to #14

Public Radio News/Talk: Connecticut Educational Communications’ WNPR 7.2 – 5.7, -1.5, second to seventh

New England Public Media’s WFCR .4 – .6, +.2, #18 to #16

Number One 6+: Audacy adult contemporary WRCH, 13th month in a row, 13.8 – 13.9, +.1

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Increase: classic hits-oldies WHCN (+1.1)

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Decrease: public radio news/talk WNPR (-1.5)

 

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

 

Thursday, May 20, 2021

| May 20, 2021

Round Three of April PPMs Released. The third of four rounds of ratings information from Nielsen Audio’s April 2021 PPM survey has been released for 12 markets including: Portland, Charlotte, San Antonio, Sacramento, Pittsburgh, Salt Lake City, Las Vegas, Orlando, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Kansas City, and Columbus. Nielsen’s April 2021 sweep covered April 1 – 28. TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian presents his Ratings Takeaways from this group of markets. In Portland, Alpha Media’s news/talk KXL-FM dips four-tenths for a 5.3 share (weekly, 6+ AQH share) but hangs on to the #4 rank while iHeartMedia’s crosstown news/talk KEX-AM adds eight-tenths to finish with a 3.5 share and rises to the #12 rank. Radio One’s news/talk WBT-AM/FM, Charlotte sheds six-tenths for a 4.4 share and drops to the #8 rank. In Sacramento, iHeartMedia’s news/talk KFBK tacks on five-tenths for an 8.7 share finish good enough to climb to the #1 rank. Similarly, in Salt Lake City, Bonneville’s KSL-FM jumps by 1.5 shares for an 8.3 share finish and leaps from #3 to #1. You can see Mike Kinosian’s complete Ratings Takeaways from this group of markets (as well as the first two rounds of markets) here.

Nielsen: Radio Listening Continues to Rebound. Fourteen months after the coronavirus pandemic began and dramatically affected the amount of time people were spending in their vehicles commuting to work, the country is steadily reopening and Nielsen Audio reports that radio listening is growing again. Nielsen says, “The April 2021 PPM survey revealed new gains in radio listening across the aggregate of markets for the second month in a row. As America continues to reopen, consumers are returning to radio in numbers not seen in over half a year. Radio’s weekly reach is now at its highest levels (121 million weekly consumers) since March 2020 when COVID-19’s impact began to take hold. Since the beginning of 2021, radio has added more than 5 million new weekly listeners. Radio’s Average Quarter-Hour (AQH) audience in April 2021 hit its highest levels since the fourth quarter of 2020, prior to this winter’s virus surges and associated restrictions. What’s more, AQH audience levels have jumped 10% in the past two months as vaccinations and a gradual return to pre-pandemic routines have proliferated.”

Rudy Giuliani Visits News/Talk WEEO-FM. Pictured above is former New York City Mayor, former Donald Trump attorney, and current WABC, New York personality Rudy Giuliani (center) at Magnum Broadcasting’s WEEO-FM, Chambersburg, PA/Hagerstown, MD “News Talk 1037FM.” Giuliani was the guest of PA State Senator Colonel Doug Mastriano and spent about 45 minutes on the radio sharing stories and answering questions about topics from the FBI to NYC. He’s pictured with station GM Patrick Ryan (left) and political analyst Michele Jansen (right).

Report: Audacy in Negotiations to Fill Rush Daypart with Dana Loesch Across Company News/Talkers. According to Bobby Burack’s report at Outkick, Audacy is in negotiations with Radio America to have “The Dana Show” starring Dana Loesch fill the 12:00 noon to 3:00 pm ET daypart formerly occupied by Rush Limbaugh on many of its news/talk stations. Burack says his sources say it’s in the “advanced stages” but not a done deal just yet. The story also says that video platform The First – which simulcasts video of Loesch’s radio program as well as that of other talk hosts such as Buck Sexton, Bill O’Reilly, and Jesse Kelly – is launching a daily TV-only, one-hour show hosted by Dana Loesch that will air at 6:00 pm ET.

Bonneville’s KTTH-AM, Seattle Adds Dan Bongino Show. Seattle news/talk KTTH-AM is adding Westwood One’s “Dan Bongino Show” to its program lineup, airing in the 9:00 am to 12:00 noon daypart. The Bonneville station is programmed by Jason Antebi who says, “We’re excited to welcome Dan to the KTTH family. I can’t think of many people better suited to carry the torch in this daypart. This isn’t a ‘Rush replacement show’ because no one can replace Rush. He will always be the greatest broadcaster in history. KTTH, in part, has become what it is because of him. We’re now looking to grow on that with the help of Dan and we’re confident he can help us do that.” Bongino comments, “I’m honored KTTH decided to go with the show. All I can do is bring a high-quality product, put a ton of work into it and I promise, I will never waste the audience’s time. I don’t just tell you stories to tell you stories. People don’t want their time wasted. They want to know why the news matters.”

CBS Audio Offers Memorial Day Special. This year’s Memorial Day Holiday special from CBS Audio is being made available to non-affiliate stations on a market availability basis. The three-hour program is hosted by Gil Gross and guests and topics include author Malcom Gladwell about the longest night of World War II, Pulitzer nominee Max Boot looks at the forgotten wars of American History, the announced end of America’s longest war—Afghanistan, and the forgotten heroes of the war in Vietnam. It’s available via FTP on May 25 for airing Friday, May 28 through Memorial Day (May 31). Reach out to Melek Demir at: Demirm@cbsnews.com for availability in your market.

TALKERS News Notes. Next Tuesday (5/25), Townsquare Media’s WKXW-FM, Trenton “New Jersey 101.5” is presenting the first GOP gubernatorial primary debate between candidates Jack Ciattarelli and Hirsh Singh at 7:00 pm. The two will face off in the June 8 primary to determine which candidate will take on incumbent Governor Phil Murphy in November. “New Jersey 101.5” senior political director Eric Scott will moderate the one-hour live program and will take questions from on-air and online listeners. Scott says, “This format allows ordinary citizens a chance to talk directly to the candidates about what is important to them and you never know what they are going to ask.”…..Radio ad pros Jim and Dan Price – founders of Oink Ink – are launching a digital audio creative agency called Price Brothers. Dan Price says, “Digital audio technology exploded so quickly that it outpaced creative. That’s where we saw an opportunity. While the tech guys are developing new platforms and vehicles to support ads, we wanted to get out in front and put energy into making great creative to make the most of that technology.” He adds that “with digital, the consumption is different than with ‘traditional’ radio; the patterns are different, the usage is different… so the creative should be different.”

January 6 Commission, COVID-19, AZ 2020 Vote Audit, Israel-Hamas Violence, Texas Abortion Law, Trump Org Investigation, and U.S.-Russia Relations Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (5/19). The U.S. House moves to create January 6 Commission to investigate Capitol invasion and Mitch McConnell’s opposition to it; the declining rate of COVID cases in much of the U.S. and concerns about vaccine hesitancy; the 2020 election vote audit taking place in Arizona and Republicans’ desire to audit Georgia’s election results; the ongoing rocket attacks between Israel and Hamas; Texas passes a new law banning abortions after six weeks; the New York attorney general’s expansion of the Trump Organization into a criminal probe; and U.S. and Russian officials meet in Iceland were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

April 2021 PPM Ratings Takeaways – Part Three

| May 20, 2021

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

Nielsen Audio’s April 2021 sweep covered April 1 – 28.

In addition to providing “Takeaways” for spoken-word stations finishing in their respective markets’ top twenty, TALKERS magazine managing editor Mike Kinosian notes each particular city’s #1 station (6+), as well as the most significant (6+) improvement and erosion.

All comparisons noted are March 2021 – April 2021 (6+).

PORTLAND

News/Talk: Alpha Media’s KXL “FM 101 News” 5.7 – 5.3, -.4, flat at #4

iHeartMedia-owned KEX “News Radio 1190” 2.7 – 3.5, +.8, #16 to #12

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: None in the top twenty

Public Radio News/Talk: Oregon Public Broadcasting’s KOPB 10.7 – 9.9, -.8, repeats at #1

Number One 6+: Oregon Public Broadcasting public radio news/talk KOPB, fourth month in a row, 10.7 – 9.9, -.8

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Increase: hot AC KRSK (+1.5)

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Decrease: classic rock KGON and CHR KBFF (both -1.0)

CHARLOTTE

News/Talk: Radio One-owned WBT AM & WBT-FM “Charlotte’s News Talk” 5.0 – 4.4, -.6, fifth to eighth

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Audacy’s WFNZ “Sports Radio The Fan” .9 – 1.3, +.4, #19 to #17

Public Radio News/Talk: University Radio Foundation-owned WFAE 4.1 – 4.2, +.1, #11 to #9

Number One 6+: iHeartMedia classic rock WRFX, first month, 6.0 – 7.0, +1.0

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Increase: urban contemporary WPEG (+1.7)

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Decrease: adult contemporary WKQC (-1.8)

SAN ANTONIO

News/Talk: iHeartMedia’s WOAI “News Radio 1200” flat at 5.0, remains in seventh-place

Alpha Media-owned KTSA “Stay Connected” 1.6 – 2.1, +.5, #18 to #15

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: None in the top twenty

Public Radio News/Talk: Texas Public Radio’s KSTX 3.6 – 4.3, +.7, #12 to #11

Number One 6+: Cox Media Group classic hits-oldies KONO-FM, fourth consecutive month, 9.6 – 9.4, -.2

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Increase: public radio news/talk KSTX and country KAJA (both +.7)

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Decrease: adult contemporary KQXT and regional Mexican KROM (both -.8)

SACRAMENTO

News/Talk: iHeartMedia’s KFBK-AM & KFBK-FM “News 1530 AM & 93.1 FM” 8.2 – 8.7, +.5, second to first

Co-owned KSTE “Talk 650” 2.1 – 3.7, +1.6, #14 to #11

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: None in the top twenty

Public Radio News/Talk: Capital Public Radio’s KXJZ 5.3 – 5.2, -.1, sixth to seventh

KQED, Inc.’s KQEI flat at .8, #19 to #18

Number One 6+ (Tie): iHeartMedia news/talk KFBK AM & KFBK-FM, first month, 8.2 – 8.7, +.5 and Bonneville adult contemporary KYMX, second month in a row, 8.5 – 8.7, +.2

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Increase: news/talk KSTE (+1.6)

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Decrease: rock KRXQ (-.7)

PITTSBURGH

News/Talk: Audacy’s KDKA-AM “News Radio 1020 AM” 4.7 – 4.2, -.5, seventh to tenth

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Audacy-owned KDKA-FM “93.7 The Fan All Sports All The Time” (Pirates) 6.2 – 6.9, +.7, fifth to fourth

Public Radio News/Talk: Pittsburgh Community Broadcasting’s WESA 3.1 – 3.5, +.4, steady at #11

Number One 6+: iHeartMedia classic hits-oldies WWSW, first month, 9.5 – 10.5, +1.0

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Increase: classic hits-oldies WWSW (+1.0)

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Decrease: news/talk KDKA-AM and adult contemporary WSHH (both -.5)

SALT LAKE CITY

News/Talk: Bonneville-owned KSL “News Radio” 6.8 – 8.3, +1.5, third to first

iHeartMedia’s KNRS-AM & KNRS-FM “Talk Radio” 6.5 – 6.3, -.2, unchanged at #4

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: None in the top twenty

Public Radio News/Talk: University of Utah’s KUER 4.7 – 4.1, -.6, sixth to tenth

Number One 6+: Bonneville news/talk KSL, first month, 6.8 – 8.3, +1.5

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Increase: classical KBYU (+2.5)

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Decrease: adult contemporary KSFI (-1.3)

LAS VEGAS

News/Talk: None in the top twenty

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: None in the top twenty

Public Radio News/Talk: Nevada Public Radio Corporation-owned KNPR flat at 2.3, #16 to #19

Number One 6+: Beasley Media Group classic hits-oldies KKLZ, first month, 6.4 – 7.0, +.6

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Increase: contemporary Christian KSOS (+1.0)

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Decrease: Spanish adult hits KWID (-1.5)

ORLANDO

News/Talk: iHeartMedia’s WTKS “Real Radio 104.1” unchanged at 5.9, remains in fifth-place

Cox Media Group-owned WDBO “Orlando’s News Talk” 3.2 – 2.9, -.3, #11 to #12

iHeartMedia’s WFLF “Orlando News Radio” 1.4 – 1.9, +.5, #18 to #16

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: iHeartMedia-owned WYGM “96.9 The Game” flat at 1.3, continues at #19

Public Radio News/Talk: Community Connections’ WMFE 2.4 – 3.5, +1.1, #15 to #10

Number One 6+: Audacy classic hits-oldies WOCL, fourth straight month, 9.2 – 10.2, +1.0

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Increase: public radio news/talk WMFE (+1.1)

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Decrease: Spanish tropical WNUE (-1.1)

CINCINNATI

News/Talk: iHeartMedia’s WLW “700 Cincinnati’s News Radio” (Reds) 9.1 – 12.7, +3.6, second to first

Co-owned WKRC “55 KRC The Talk Station” 4.3 – 4.2, -.1, tenth to eighth

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: iHeartMedia’s WCKY “ESPN 1530” flat at .7, unchanged at #20

Public Radio News/Talk: Cincinnati Public Radio-owned WVXU 3.7 – 2.9, -.8, #11 to #12

Number One 6+: iHeartMedia news/talk WLW first month, 9.1 – 12.7, +3.6

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Increase: news/talk WLW (+3.6)

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Decrease: country WUBE (-1.5)

CLEVELAND

News/Talk: iHeartMedia’s WTAM “News Radio 1100” (Indians) 6.9 – 8.6, +1.7, fourth to third

News: Co-owned WMMS-HD2 “BIN 99.1 Because Truth Matters” steady at .1, remains at #19

Sports Talk: Audacy’s WKRK “Sports Radio 92.3 The Fan” 3.4 – 3.2, -.2, #11 to #12

Public Radio News/Talk: Ideastream-owned WCPN 3.2 – 3.4, +.2, #12 to #11

Kent State University’s WKSU flat at .7, stays at #17

Number One 6+: Audacy classic rock WNCX, second month in a row, 10.6 – 10.7, +.1

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Increase: news/talk WTAM (+1.7)

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Decrease: urban AC WZAK (-1.1)

KANSAS CITY

News/Talk: Audacy’s KMBZ-FM “98.1 FM News, Traffic, Weather” 5.6 – 6.0, +.4, fourth to third

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Audacy-owned KCSP “Sports Radio 610 Our Teams, Our Town” (Royals) 1.5 – 3.5, +2.0, #20 to #11

Union Broadcasting’s WHB “Sports Radio 810” 2.8 – 2.3, -.5, #15 to #16

Public Radio News/Talk: University of Missouri’s KCUR 5.3 – 5.2, -.1, eighth to fifth

Number One 6+: Cumulus Media classic hits-oldies KCMO-FM, fifth consecutive month, 8.8 – 9.1, +.3

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Increase: sports talk KCSP (+2.0)

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Decrease: country WDAF (-1.6)

COLUMBUS

News/Talk: iHeartMedia’s WTVN “News Radio 610” 5.9 – 7.0, +1.1, fifth to fourth

News: None in the top twenty

Sports Talk: Tegna-owned WBNS-FM “97.1 FM The Fan” 5.4 – 4.5, -.9, sixth to seventh

Co-owned WBNS-AM “ESPN 1460 AM” flat at .2, #19 to #20

Public Radio News/Talk: Ohio State University’s WOSU 6.6 – 5.8, -.8, third to fifth

Number One 6+: iHeartMedia country WCOL, fourth successive month, 11.3 – 10.6, -.7

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Increase: news/talk WTVN (+1.1)

Largest 6+ March 2021 – April 2021 Decrease: CHR WNCI (-1.6)

 

Up next: April 2021 overviews for Austin; Raleigh; Indianapolis; Milwaukee; Nashville; Providence; Norfolk; Jacksonville; West Palm Beach; Greensboro; Memphis; and Hartford. Email managing editor Mike Kinosian at Mike.Kinosian@gmail.com.