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Monday, October 31, 2022

| October 31, 2022

Monday Memo: Earwitness News. There are new WCBS/WINS synergies and USA top-biller WTOP offers voluntary separation buyouts. With so many radio voices now in permanent remote mode, and the post-pandemic gig economy flourishing, consultant Holland Cooke describes an opportunity “like Uber for newscasters.” Read his column here.

 

Pending Business: Gear Up for the Holiday Season. The midterm elections are almost history and radio sellers are getting ready for this year’s holiday season. There’s no way of knowing for certain how much consumers will spend and on what, but radio sales pro Steve Lapa writes in today’s column that a look at where Americans are spending now can provide a roadmap to a successful holiday sales season. Read more here.

 

Scott Shannon Announces Retirement. Legendary radio personality Scott Shannon didn’t work in talk radio, but it seems almost criminal not to recognize his announced retirement from his daily morning show. On Friday (10/28), he told his WCBS-FM, New York listeners that is retiring from morning radio on December 16. Among his many achievements in the radio business are his stints at three New York City stations, first at WHTZ-FM “Z100” – which is chronicled in the documentary film, Worst to First: The True Story of Z100 New York – and then at WPLJ-FM. He is credited with the creation of the “morning zoo” concept that was imitated throughout the 1980s. Shannon will continue his other roles with Audacy as host of the nationally syndicated “America’s Greatest Hits” program and the “True Oldies” format on WCBS-HD3.

Hubbard and VSiN Bring Sports Betting Content to Seattle. KNUC-HD2 is the new home of sports gambling radio as Hubbard Radio and VSiN partner in the effort. The press release says, “The station will deliver news and analysis from the industry’s most knowledgeable sports betting experts and legendary book makers to inform and entertain the growing number of people betting on sports. Sister station KIXI-AM 880, will also air “Action Updates” twice each weekday as well as “VSiN PrimeTime” with Tim Murray and former NFL quarterback Shaun King. Hubbard Seattle market manager Trip Reeb comments, “With the incredible growth sports betting has seen in recent years, we saw this as a great opportunity to capitalize on that rapid expansion and the specialized content VSiN delivers.” VSiN content currently airs on more than 140 terrestrial radio stations in 33 states.

iHeartMedia Announces New ‘Glee’ Podcast. The newest podcast for fans of the television hit “Glee!” titled, “And That’s What You REALLY Missed,” is available from iHeartRadio, hosted by Jenna Ushkowitz and Kevin McHale. iHeartRadio says, “Calling all Gleeks! We’re baaaaack…again. Kevin McHale (aka Artie Abrams) and Jenna Ushkowitz (aka Tina Cohen-Chang) are heading back to William McKinley High School to re-watch all six seasons of ‘Glee!’ We’re taking you all the way from McKinley High to New York City, from the choir room to Nationals, and from the Super Bowl to a world tour! We’ll look back on your favorite moments and never before heard stories with a slew of guests including cast, crew, celebrities and you, the fans! So warm up those vocal cords and tune those ears, because it’s all coming out.”

Midterms, Pelosi Attack, January 6/Trump Legal Issues, Russia-Ukraine War, Affirmative Action, The Economy, Brazil Election, and Elon Musk & Twitter Among Top News/Talk Stories Over the Weekend. The debates ahead of the midterm elections and speculation about which party will control the House and the Senate; the aftermath of the attack on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s husband; the legal battle over former President Donald Trump’s January 6 emails and his other legal issues; Russia’s continuing assault on Ukraine’s infrastructure; the U.S. Supreme Court takes on affirmative action in higher education; inflation and fears of a recession; Lula defeats Bolsonaro in Brazil’s presidential election; and Elon Musk takes control of Twitter were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio over the weekend, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Monday, October 17, 2022

| October 17, 2022

Monday Memo: Podcasting? Think How-Long, Not How-Many. “When I say, ‘Seinfeld quote,’ you think ‘Do the opposite,’” consultant Holland Cooke reckons. In this week’s column, HC borrows another Jerry-ism to warn against “an all-too-common mistake” he hears podcasters make. Read it here.

 

Pending Business: How Do You Handle Mistakes? Radio sales pro Steve Lapa asks that question after his recent experience with a local company that handled a problem the right way. When the inevitable mistake happens at your station or network, are you “all hands on deck” or do you back away from the issue? He offers a four-point prescription for overcoming this adversity. Read it here.

 

KNX, Los Angeles Unveils ‘LA’s Morning News.’ Today (10/17), is the debut of the new “LA’s Morning News” program in Audacy’s all-news KNX-AM/FM, Los Angeles. The company calls it “the next generation of the iconic brand’s all-news morning show about the stories that matter to millions of Southern Californians.” Longtime KNX News anchor and podcaster Mike Simpson moves to the morning drive daypart as host alongside co-host Vicky Moore and veteran traffic reporter and news personality Jennifer York. The moves follow the retirement of legendary morning news anchor Dick Helton after a 53-year career with 24 years of it spent at KNX. Audacy regional president Jeff Federman says, “Mike, Vicky, and Jen are the perfect team to build upon the legacy of integrity, credibility, and humanity in our great shared experience – the morning commute in LA. We’d also like to extend our gratitude to Dick, as his decades of service to our communities are unrivaled.” Mike Simpson states, “There’s something very special about waking up a region as large and dynamic as this one. It’s about getting people out the door and keeping them company on their commute with what they need to know. I’m beyond thrilled to start working with Vicky, Jen and the entire team. Here’s to multiple alarm clocks!” Simpson most recently co-anchored the afternoon drive news and “KNX In Depth,” and created the hit podcast “I’ve Got Questions with Mike Simpson.” Vicky Moore has hosted mornings on KNX since 2004, and Jennifer York has been guiding KNX listeners through their commutes for more than a decade following a long stint as an airborne television traffic reporter in Los Angeles.

SummitMedia Gives Todd Johnson Oversight of Richmond Market. Wichita market president Todd Johnson adds market president duties for SummitMedia, LLC’s Richmond, Virginia station group that includes sports talk WURV-AM “ESPN Richmond” and four music brands. Johnson continues to serve in the president role for the Wichita market. SummitMedia chairman Carl Parmer comments, “Todd has done an outstanding job developing our Wichita cluster and I am confident he will bring the same passion, dedication and leadership to Richmond.” Johnson adds, “I’m honored to assume this new role for SummitMedia and expand my role in the company. I look forward to working with a new team of broadcast and digital experts, while enhancing the products and services we deliver to our clients.”

TALKERS News Notes. Joining the sale department at Skyview Networks are audio sales professionals Leslie Sturm and Jeana Meade. Sturm joins as vice president, network sales. She comes to Skyview with an extensive background at the agency and advertising sales levels. Meade, a 12-year broadcast audio veteran, is now Skyview’s newest network audio manager. Skyview president of network partnerships and chief revenue officer Jeanne-Marie Condo says, “Leslie and Jeana’s tremendous experience and stellar industry knowledge will be a driving force for sales on both coasts. Each of them has hit the ground running, fitting in perfectly with our current culture while bringing their unique skills forward, and we are thrilled to have them on board to help lift our initiatives to new levels.”…..DailyWire+ Podcast Network names audio industry pro Scot Herd SVP of ad revenue. Herd most recently served as VP of network sales for iHeartMedia. In this position, Herd will oversee the company’s team of in-house ad sales reps selling podcasts including: “Candace Owens,” “The Jordan B. Peterson Podcast,” “Morning Wire,” and the YouTube exclusive show, “The Comments Section with Brett Cooper.” DailyWire+ continues its sales partnership with Westwood One, which continues selling the network’s flagship podcast, “The Ben Shapiro Show.” Herd says, “I’m thrilled to take over this new role at DailyWire+ and to capitalize on our tremendous growth. We are committed to our partners and will go above and beyond to optimize all our advertising campaigns. This sales team is second to none and I am privileged to be in this position. 2023 here we come!”…..Podcast discovery platform Podcast Radio Network, official podcasting content partner of NAB Show New York 2022, announces that it is kicking off Podcast Futures New York, a special event for audio and podcasting professionals held in conjunction with NAB Show New York, on Wednesday (10/19) from 10:00 am-5:00 pm at the Javits Center.

TALKERS PERSONALITY PROFILE: The Late Barry Farber’s Daughter Bibi’s Musical JourneyTALKERS managing editor Mike Kinosian follows the fascinating story of Bibi Farber, the NYC-born daughter of the late talk radio legend Barry Farber on her musical odyssey that took her from the U.S. to Sweden (where she spent her teen years and was part of that country’s emerging alt-rock scene) and back again. Bibi Farber and her two-years younger sister Celia grew up in the Big Apple. Their parents had long been separated and in 1976 the two young girls (13 and 11 at the time) relocated to Orebro, Sweden with their mother, Ulla. “I didn’t want to go, but it wasn’t up to me,” emphasizes Bibi, who would wind up living in Sweden for six years – Celia for eight; both finished high school there. “I went to the United Nations School and loved it. Even though my father saw less of us, he loved that we were living in Sweden. He thought it was a much safer place than New York, which in the mid-1970s, was no place for two teenage girls to live. Sweden was a great place, although we did split with American culture.”  Albeit that Bibi didn’t start playing music until becoming a high school student in Sweden, she loved rock music and was self-taught. “I didn’t have any formal music training but was able to play in punk bands,” she points out. “I was a classic rock kid from New York, so I was into artists such as Led ZeppelinDavid BowieElton John, the Who and the Stones. When I got to Sweden, those artists weren’t big there. They didn’t have any commercial radio as we do in America.” Over the years, Bibi has written and recorded a number of tracks – some that have found their way into major commercials – and has carved out a niche performing for people in hospitals, nursing homes, and similar locations between her home in the Hudson Valley and Brooklyn, New York. She has also mastered the art of stilt-walking and has, upon occasion, incorporated it into her unique performances. To read the entire story, please click here.

Russia-Ukraine War, Midterms, Trump Legal Issues, Xi Jinping, January 6 Hearing, Inflation/Financial Markets, and Ye-Parler Deal Among Top News/Talk Stories Over the Weekend. Russia’s use of Iran-made drones to bomb civilian targets in Ukraine; the Herschel WalkerRaphael Warnock debate and the build-up to the November midterm elections; the numerous legal battles facing former President Donald Trump; Chinese President Xi Jinping begins third term, speaks at Communist Party’s 20th Congress; the final January 6 hearing and the committee’s recommendation to subpoena Donald Trump; the high rate of inflation and the mercurial financial markets; and Ye’s deal to acquire conservative media platform Parler were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio over the weekend, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Friday, September 23, 2022

| September 23, 2022

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, is now posted. This new episode titled, “Comes the Fall,” looks back at this past week of 9/19 to 9/23. The program features guests (in order of appearance): Kevin Casey, executive editor, TALKERS; Gregg Stebben, talk show host Beamz/Live; Jeff Katz, talk show host, WRVA, Richmond; Jack Heath, talk show host, “The Pulse of NH”; Daliah Wachs, M.D., physician/talk show host, Genesis Communications Network; Renee Kohanski, M.D., podcast commentator/forensic psychiatrist. The show airs weekends (Friday evenings to Sunday nights) on almost 100 broadcast signals and networks across the U.S. and U.K as well as having developed a significant international following as a podcast. To listen to this week’s episode, please click here. To view the latest TALKERS topic research, please click here. “The Michael Harrison Wrap” is 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.

What ‘Serial’ Has Meant to the Audio Industry. The release of Adnan Sayed from prison last week put the investigative podcast “Serial” back in the spotlight. Sayed – convicted of killing his girlfriend Hae Min Lee – was one of the subjects of the first season of the podcast and, as it turned out, the true crime genre would become one of podcasting’s most popular. Eight years ago, radio consultant Bill McMahon of The Authentic Personality wrote a piece about the first season of “Serial,” explaining why the program was so appealing. Today, he says that column also “explained why podcasts containing journalism, news reporting, and storytelling similar to ‘Serial’ are among the most-listened-to podcasts today.” McMahon adds, “This quote from an interview the Nieman Lab conducted with ‘Serial’ creator Sarah Koenig just prior to the launch of ‘Serial’ speaks volumes about how the status quo, conventional wisdom and groupthink that is so pervasive in broadcasting stifles creativity and innovation: ‘For us, that it’s a podcast is so liberating. We can tell it as long as we need to tell it, and we don’t have to worry about it.’” You can read McMahon’s original column published in TALKERS here.

Media Research Council Holds 35th Annual Gala. Pictured above at the Media Research Council’s 35th annual gala in Washington, DC on Wednesday (9/21) are (from l-r): conservative author Andrew Klavan, Daily Wire CEO Jeremy Boreing, Salem Radio Network host Dr. Sebastian Gorka, Newsmax TV host and former White House press secretary Sean Spicer, Epoch TV executive producer Matthew Faraci. The event was titled, “Night of the Unwoke,” and featured speakers Larry O’Connor of WMAL-FM, Washington and Cal Thomas, whose daily commentaries are syndicated by the SRN.

Binnie Media Promotes Czarnecki. One of the nation’s most successful regional media groups, Binnie Media, promotes Michael Czarnecki from director, brand operations to VP of programming for the company’s Maine operations for the company’s New Hampshire news/talk stations branded as “The Pulse of New Hampshire.” Heath Cole continues his role as VP of programming for the company’s New Hampshire operations. Both Czarnecki and Cole will report to company president Massimo Rosati. Binnie Media is New England’s largest locally owned media company with radio, digital and outdoor assets covering Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont and Massachusetts.

iHeartMedia Partners with Neustar for Marketing Attribution. This partnership between iHeartMedia and Neustar, Inc. includes broadcast radio in end-to-end marketing attribution. A press release says the “new solution combines iHeart’s unparalleled audio reach with Neustar’s industry-leading marketing attribution solution to measure consumer engagement and the sales impact of broadcast radio alongside all other advertising channels.” It expands the Neustar Unified Measurement Solution, which spans Marketing Mix Modeling (MMM) and Marketing Attribution solution to include the iHeart broadcast radio universe. The release also says that Neustar is the first attribution service to unify the measurement of radio, which reaches over 90% of Americans a month, with all other channels into one platform. This innovation provides critical insights into the incremental contribution the massive reach of broadcast radio has on consumer purchase behavior. iHeartMedia chief data officer and president of revenue strategies Brian Kaminsky says, “The scale and effectiveness of broadcast radio is undeniable. Now with Neustar, we are able to offer brands a new level of granular user-level consumer analysis, to ensure that all media channels –including broadcast radio, are used to optimize their marketing plans and drive the results they are seeking.”

TALKERS News Notes. On yesterday’s edition of “The Todd Starnes Show,” former President Donald Trump was a guest and addressed a number of topics, including the civil suit filed against him, his children and two Trump Organization officers in New York, as well as the “Contract with America” he says Republicans will soon announce…..WRVA, Richmond talk host Jeff Katz’s program is named “Best Local Afternoon Radio Show” by the Richmond Times-Dispatch in it’s “The Best” feature for the third consecutive year…..The NBA’s Golden State Warriors sign a multi-year contract extension with Audacy sports talk outlet KGMZ-FM, San Francisco “95.7 The Game” for the station to continue serving as the team’s flagship radio station. Tim Roye, who is entering his 28th season as the radio voice of the Warriors, will once again handle play-by-play duties. Jim Barnett will continue to join Roye in the booth as color analyst for all road games, with Tom Tolbert handling analyst duties for home games. Audacy San Francisco regional vice president Stacey Kauffman says, “We’ve been so fortunate to give listeners a front row seat to the sounds of three championships over the last decade, and we’re thrilled to extend our partnership with the NBA’s premier franchise.”…..Audacy’s Cadence13 releases the trailer and announces initial guests for “K[no]w Mercy with Stephen A. Smith,” the sports personality’s first podcast. The podcast launches on Monday (9/26) guests will include: Snoop Dogg, Sean Hannity, LL COOL J, Chris Cuomo, and Sue Bird…..Cumulus Media and YAP Media agree to a deal for Cumulus to monetize, market, and distribute YAP Media’s existing and forthcoming podcasts. Joining the Cumulus Podcast Network is YAP Media’s flagship podcast, “Young and Profiting,” hosted by YAP Media founder and CEO Hala Taha. Additional YAP Media podcasts joining the Cumulus Podcast Network include “Creating Confidence with Heather Monahan,” “True Underdog with Jayson Waller,” “A Feminine Impression with Dr. Michelle Daf,” “The Murdaugh Family Murders with Matt Harris and Seton Tucker,” “Chapter a Day Audio Bible read by Pastor John Stange,” and “The Greatness Machine with Darius Mirshahzadeh.”…..Audacy’s C13Originals unveils the second season of “It Was Said,” the podcast franchise that looks back on some of the most powerful, impactful, and timeless speeches in history. Season 2 will feature an all-new lineup of generation-defining speeches from towering figures in history, including: Winston Churchill’s “The Finest Hour,” JFK’s “We Choose to go to the Moon,” Theodore Roosevelt’s “Man in the Arena,” Margaret Thatcher’s “The Lady’s Not for Turning,” Nelson Mandela’s “I am Prepared to Die,” and Ronald Reagan on the 40th Anniversary of D-Day….. National Soccer Hall of Famer Eric Wynalda is joining fellow Hall of Famer and teammate at the 1990 and 1994 World Cups Tony Meola to host the popular SiriusXM FC afternoon show “Counter Attack.” Wynalda previously hosted “Wynalda Talks Football” on SiriusXM.

The Economy, Inflation, and Fed Interest Rate Hike Top News/Talk Story for Week of September 19-23. The state of the U.S. economy, the high food and gas prices and the Fed’s raising intertest rates by three quarters of a point combined as the most-talked-about story on news/talk radio this week, landing atop Talkers TenTM. At #2 this week was former President Donald Trump being sued by New York Attorney General Letitia James for fraud and the Department of Justice’s classified documents investigation, followed by the Russia-Ukraine War and foreign affairs at #3. The Talkers TenTM is a weekly chart of the top stories and people discussed on news/talk radio 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.

Thursday, September 22, 2022

| September 22, 2022

FAIR’s Hold Their Feet to the Fire Radio Row 2022 Brings Hosts and Guests Together in Washington, DC. Today (9/22) is the second day of the two-day radio row presented by Federation for American Immigration Reform. The 15th annual “Hold Their Feet to the Fire” began on Wednesday with more than 65 talk media personalities interviewing politicians and immigration experts and discussing the hot-button issue of immigration reform and the problems the nation faces with the recent surges of migrants at the U.S.-Mexico border. Pictured above are two of the hosts taking part in the radio row. Above left is WNRI, Woonsocket, Rhode Island personality John DePetro flanked by U.S. Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA), and above right is WRVA, Richmond afternoon host Jeff Katz with the media personalities Diamond and Silk.

WPHT, Philadelphia Talent Shuffle Includes New Morning Show; Zeoli Moves to PM Drive. A change in the programming schedule at Audacy’s news/talk WPHT, Philadelphia includes a new morning drive program titled, “Kayal and Company,” led by Nick Kayal and including Dawn Stensland and Greg Stocker (who also serves as station PD). Current morning drive host Rich Zeoli moves to the 3:00 pm to 7:00 pm daypart. Dom Giordano remains in the 12:00 noon to 3:00 pm slot and Stensland continues her solo program from 10:00 am to 12:00 noon. The changes become effective on October 3. Audacy Philadelphia SVP and market manager David Yadgaroff comments, “For the first time ever, WPHT will be live and local from 6:00 am to 7:00 pm, which further cements this fan favorite as the voice of Philadelphia and a reliable destination for our listeners. We’re excited to welcome Nick, who is trading in his sports background for his passion for politics, to our morning drive, and move Rich and his highly-successful program to entertain and inform listeners as they wind down their days.” Kayal previously worked in the market on sports talk WPEN-FM “97.5 The Fanatic.”

The Ramsey Network Launches ‘Smart Money Happy Hour’ Podcast. A new podcast from the Ramsey Network is launched titled, “Smart Money Happy Hour,” starring Rachel Cruze and George Kamel. The podcast is described as “a mix of solid advice and snark from two friends who also happen to be money experts.” The show joins the Ramsey Network roster of podcasts that includes “The Ramsey Show,” “The Dr. John Delony Show,” “The Rachel Cruze Show,” “The Ken Coleman Show,” “The Fine Print,” “Borrowed Future” and “The EntreLeadership Podcast.” Ramsey Network EVP Blake Thompson says, “Rachel and George have such unique chemistry. One minute I was laughing along with them, the next I was thinking about money in a whole new way. People are going to love the pop culture references and the casual, pour-a-glass-of-wine environment these two have created in this new podcast.” Some of the “Smart Money Happy Hour” topics include: Is Convenience Culture Worth Being Broke?; HGTV: The Network That Brainwashed Us; How to Leave a Royal Legacy for Your Family; and Can the Middle Class Still Afford to Go to Disney?

SmileyAudioMedia Offering ‘Agenda for America’ Election Programming to Stations. As a part of its continuing election coverage, Tavis Smiley, SmileyAudioMedia, Inc. and KBLA, Los Angeles “Talk 1580” announce that they are offering exclusive election programming to urban stations nationwide. SmileyAudioMedia, Inc. and KBLA Talk 1580 are producing a live, four-part series titled, “Agenda for America: An African American Perspective” that is executive produced by Smiley and moderated by KBLA’s radio hosts. The company says these four national conversations featuring influential Black voices will be offered at no charge to other talk- and urban-formatted radio stations and audio platforms across the country. The four programs are: “The State of Black Women in America,” hosted by Areva Martin; “The State of Black Men in America,” hosted by Zo Williams; “The State of Black Youth in America,” hosted by Dominique DiPrima; and, “Why We Can’t Wait: The Urgency of Now,” hosted by Tavis Smiley. The series airs live on Thursdays from 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm PT on KBLA “Talk 1580.” Smiley says, “KBLA ‘Talk 1580’ is not only a portal for talk and opinions for the progressive African American listening audience, but also a content provider of relevant programming for urban stations around the country. We intend for KBLA ‘Talk 1580’ to be the epicenter of election coverage, addressing local, state and national issues, affecting what matters most to our people.”

Audacy’s All-News WWJ, Detroit Unveils New Anchor Lineup. Beginning on October 3, the news anchor lineup changes at Audacy’s all-news WWJ, Detroit “News Radio 950.” The station says longtime anchor Jackie Paige (right) moves to mornings, joining Jonathan Carlson (left) from 7:00 am to 10:00 am. Paige will also host middays from 10:00 am to 12:00 noon. Brooke Allen follows from 12:00 pm to 2:00 pm. Tony Ortiz takes over at 2:00 pm and is joined by Allen from 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm. Ortiz also hosts from 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm. Erin Vermeulen remains the evening news anchor from 7:00 pm to 12:00 midnight. Audacy Detroit SVP and market manager Debbie Kenyon comments, “We are excited to announce our new lineup, which is full of news anchors who are seasoned and well known in the community. This new slate will allow WWJ to continue its mission of keeping listeners informed of breaking news and the top stories of the day.”

BIA Advisory: WTOP Maintains Top Biller Spot for 2021. A report from BIA Advisory Services tallying radio’s top billers for last year reveals that Hubbard Broadcasting’s all-news WTOP-FM, Washington stayed in the #1 position with an estimated $70 million in revenue in 2021. BIA Advisory says that figure was an increase of 12.9% from $62 million in 2020. It goes on to say, “This surpasses the overall growth rate of 10.3% that BIA forecasts for over-the-air radio from 2020 to 2021, as the industry started to pull out of the pandemic slump. WTOP-FM is also the only station on this list to surpass its pre-pandemic revenue figure of $69.8 million in 2019.” The spoken word stations on the 2021 list that showed improvement include Audacy’s all-news WBBM-AM/WCFS-FM, Chicago – up to the #4 spot from #5 in 2020 ($34 million); Beasley Media Group’s sports talk WBZ-FM, Boston rose from #6 to #5 ($33.4 million); Audacy’s all-news WINS, New York was up from #9 to #8 ($31.6 million); its sports talk WFAN, New York rose from #10 to #9 ($31.5 million); and its all-news WCBS-AM, New York entered the top 10 at #10 ($30.9 million). The big change from the 2020 list to the 2021 list was Cox Media Group’s news/talk WSB-AM/WSBB-FM, Atlanta falling from #4 to #12. BIA also ranked the top billing by radio companies. You can see both charts here.

Triton Digital Releases August 2022 U.S. Podcast Report. This report from Triton Digital ranks the most popular podcasts in the U.S. for the month of August based on Average Weekly Downloads. Changes from the July 2022 report include audiochuck’s “Crime Junkie” rising from #3 to #1, bumping Cumulus Podcast Network’s “Ben Shapiro Show” from #1 to #3. Remaining in the #2 spot is NPR’s “NPR News Now.” You can see the complete list of the top 100 U.S. podcasts from Triton Digital here.

TALKERS News Notes. The New York City Radio Committee, a joint partnership of all the major radio broadcasters in New York City, is developing a marketing campaign to promote the power of radio. The campaign includes radio messaging on over 20 of New York’s most-listened-to stations, digital and social media marketing along with trade media. The multi-media campaign runs through November. The focus of the initiative is on advertising agencies and businesses that purchase advertising. Audacy New York market president and chairman of the New York City Radio Committee Chris Oliviero says, “Radio has been and continues to be a critical and valued part of millions of New Yorkers’ daily lives. These iconic brands, from music to news to sports, provide the soundtrack of the city. This campaign offers a fresh, fun and innovative approach to highlighting the efficacy of radio for media planners and advertisers.  The collaboration of the city’s major broadcasters shows a clear commitment to our belief that local radio, consumed on FM or AM or streaming or in podcasts, is an essential tool in any overall marketing strategy in the media capital of the world.”…..iHeartMedia extends the contract of Michael McGuinness through June 1, 2027 and changes his title from EVP – finance and deputy chief financial officer to EVP, deputy chief financial officer of the company and chief financial officer – multiplatform and digital segments…..FOX News Channel names Trace Gallagher anchor of “FOX News @ Night.” Gallagher takes over for Shannon Bream, who was recently promoted to anchor of “FOX News Sunday.” FOX News Media CEO Suzanne Scott says, “When it comes to breaking news coverage, Trace Gallagher is one of the best in the business and having a seasoned journalist at the helm of this hour ensures our viewers unrivaled 24/7 news coverage.”…..“The Todd Starnes Show” adds new affiliate KHTS, Santa Clarita, California to its roster of stations.

Inflation/Interest Rate Hike, NY Sues Trump Org, Trump Documents Case, Immigration/Migrant Transportation, Midterms/2024 Presidential Race, Zelenskyy UN Speech, Iran Protests, and Hurricane Fiona Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (9/21). Inflation, the rising price of gasoline, and the Fed’s interest rate hike; New York Attorney General Letitia James files a civil fraud suit against Donald Trump, his children, and Trump Org officers; an Appeals Court rules DOJ can resume criminal probe of Donald Trump documents case; the immigration troubles at the U.S.-Mexico border and the transporting of migrants from Southern states to Northern cities; the November midterm elections and speculation about the nominees for president in 2024; Volodymyr Zelenskyy addresses the UN General Assembly pressing for punishment for Russia’s invasion of Ukraine; the protests in Iran over the death of a woman in custody of the country’s “morality police”; and the destruction caused by Hurricane Fiona were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Tuesday, July 5, 2022

| July 5, 2022

Monday Memo: Vino, Vodka, Video. All this month, consultant Holland Cooke is using his weekly column to offer “Inflation Hacks,” dozens of ways to cope with “the rising cost of EVERYTHING,” tips for your listeners (and you). Read it here.

 

Pending Business: Halftime. Radio sales pro Steve Lapa says the third and fourth quarters of 2022 are looking a little foggy due to inflation and the possibility of recession, but says, “The good news is by now you’ve met with your manager and second half adjustments are in place. You have agreed on the course correction expectations and the game plan that will help you power through the dynamics of a constantly changing business environment.” He offers some suggestions for tackling the next six months and keeping those commission checks coming in here.

New TALKERS 2022 Session Video Posted. The latest video from the June 10 TALKERS 2022 convention at Hofstra University to be posted is the panel discussion, “Maintaining Integrity in Times of Political and Cultural Polarization.” The panel was moderated by WPHT, Philadelphia talk host Dom Giordano and featured panelists: Mandy Connell, host, KOA, Denver; Jeff Katz, host, WRVA, Richmond; Joe Thomas, PD, WCHV, Charlottesville, Virginia; Dr. Daliah Wachs, physician/host, Genesis Communications Network; and Lisa Wexler, host, WICC, Bridgeport/Probate Judge, Connecticut. View the video here.

HRN Media Launches Carlos Baerga Show for Hispanic Audiences. A new, daily feature titled, “Are You Ready to Play Ball with Carlos Baerga and Legends from Yesterday and Today” is debuting in national syndication from HRN Media Networks. The 90-second feature includes baseball analytics and interviews with elite players. HRN Media Networks president Clark Logan says, “Carlos is an energetic and dynamic sports figure, who will entertain listeners. Baseball is the most popular American sport among Hispanics, and Carlos’s insights about the game and the top-name players that will join him will engage sports fans.” Baerga comments, “I am excited to launch my Hispanic radio career with the HRN Network and talk about my favorite topic… baseball. Listeners will get behind-the-scenes stories from the elite players we’re going to have on as guests.  I can’t wait to get started.”

Former Florida Sports Talk Host Hank Goldberg Dead at 82. Numerous mainstream news outlets, including CBS Sports, are reporting the death of former sports talk host “Hammerin’ Hank” Goldberg, who died on his 82nd birthday at his Las Vegas home. Goldberg hosted a South Florida sports talk show first on WIOD and later on WQAM from 1978 through 2007. He also became a nationally known reporter and prognosticator. Goldberg had been battling kidney disease and CBS Sports reports that Goldberg, who’d been working for CBS Sports HQ and SportsLine, continued to work until about three weeks ago, despite his declining health. Goldberg broke into the sports media world ghost-writing Jimmy The Greek’s syndicated gambling column. He also worked at ESPN.

The Economy, January 6 Hearings, Fourth of July/Deadly Illinois Shooting, Midterms/2024/Trump & the GOP, Russia-Ukraine War, Brittney Griner Case Among Top News/Talk Stories Over the Weekend. The high price of gas & food, the declining financial markets, and threats of a recession; the January 6 Committee hearings and questions about former President Donald Trump’s role in the Capitol assault; the Fourth of July holiday and the shooting in suburban Chicago that took the lives of six people; the midterm elections, speculation about presidential candidates in 2024, and Donald Trump’s influence over the GOP; the ongoing Russian invasion of Ukraine and its effects on the global economy; and American basketball player Brittney Griner writes a letter to President Joe Biden from her Russian jail were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio over the weekend, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.

Thursday, June 30, 2022

| June 30, 2022

James Golden is This Week’s Guest on Harrison Podcast. TALKERS founder Michael Harrison describes him as a “radio renaissance man.” James Golden, a.k.a. Bo Snerdley, is this week’s guest on the award-winning PodcastOne series, “The Michael Harrison Interview.” A native of Queens, New York – Golden spent approximately 30 years as the producer of Rush Limbaugh’s historic nationally syndicated radio show. In addition, he played a major role in the program’s many media offshoots from publishing to podcasting. Before that, he was involved in radio as a producer, researcher, programmer and on-air host at such New York outlets as WABC and WWRL, and Talkspot.com. After Rush passed away in February of 2021, Golden produced a multi-episode documentary podcast for iHeartRadio titled, Rush Limbaugh: The Man Behind the Golden EIB Microphone, in addition to writing a critically acclaimed book, Rush On The Radio: A Tribute From His Sidekick of 30 Years. And now, he’s back on Red Apple Media’s WABC with a daily afternoon talk show of his own. To listen to the podcast in its entirety, please click here.

Trip Reeb Adds Oversight of Hubbard’s Seattle Operations. The Seattle operations of Hubbard Radio will be under the supervision of Trip Reeb, effective July 18. Reeb, who also serves as VP/market manager for the company’s Phoenix cluster, will hold the same title for the Seattle group that includes alternative talk KKNW-AM, four music brands and 2060 Digital office. Reeb takes over for Wheeler Morris, who exits to lead Townsquare Media’s Fort Collins, Colorado operations. Hubbard CEO Ginny Morris says, “Hubbard Radio is so fortunate to have Trip Reeb in our leadership ranks. He has raised his hand for this assignment in the past and now is the right time to take him up on his willingness to share his unique and varied talents with not one Hubbard market but two. Trip has built a solid team in Phoenix and that gives us every confidence that the great success that team is having there will continue as Trip quickly adds his knowledge and talents to our Seattle market to build on the momentum that the Seattle team has been building in recent years.”

New TALKERS 2022 Video Posted. The latest video from the recent TALKERS 2022 convention at Hofstra University is posted. The panel discussion titled, “Strategizing a Talk Host Career,” was moderated by Salem Radio Network host Mike Gallagher and featured panelists: Bruce Avery, GM, WRHU-FM/WRHU.org, Hofstra University; Heather Cohen, EVP, The Weiss Agency; Frank Morano, host, WABC, New York; Walter Sterling, host, “Sterling on Sunday”; Brett Winterble, host, WBT, Charlotte; and Martha Zoller, host WDUN, Gainesville, Georgia. See the video here.

Industry Pros Add Informative, Personal Touch to Introductions at TALKERS 2022. Over the past week or so, we’ve been highlighting the talk media industry professionals who served the critical role of introducing panel discussions and presentations at the recent TALKERS 2022 convention at Hofstra University. We’re giving more digital ink – as well as our tremendous thanks for their outstanding efforts – to those who took the time to prepare brief speeches that provided informative and relevant information. Pictured below is Alex Fife introducing the “Attracting the Younger Demos and Broadening the Base” panel. Fife serves as VP operations, Southeast, iHeartMedia – Total Traffic & Weather Network.

Pictured above is VP/associate publisher, TALKERS and media attorney Matthew B. Harrison introducing the Fireside Chat between TALKERS magazine publisher Michael Harrison and Red Apple Media CEO and WABC owner John Catsimatidis.

Mike Gallagher Hits the Streets in Munich. Pictured above in the plaza outside Munich, Germany’s City Hall is Salem Radio Network talk host Mike Gallagher (left) interviewing a German citizen protesting against government mandates. Salem says that Gallagher is filing Special Reports this week on America’s image overseas during the Biden Administration. SRN says Gallagher encountered hundreds of “anti-mandate” marchers charging that the government gives them no say in their freedom over vaccines, masks, and other issues. Mike Gallagher comments, “It may not be a Red Wave, but the populist protests here in Germany are echoing the dissatisfaction with the role of government we keep seeing in the USA.”

Jeff Katz Welcomes Joe Kenda to Central Virginia. Pictured above is WRVA, Richmond afternoon drive talk show host Jeff Katz (left) with The Discovery Channel’s Joe Kenda (right). Kenda, who hosts “Homicide Hunter” and “American Detective,” is a retired Colorado Springs police lieutenant who was visiting Central Virginia to promote his new book, Killer Triggers. Ex-cop Katz and Kenda talked about the challenges facing law enforcement officers that have led Kenda to become a vocal advocate for mental health services for police personnel and has longtime police peer counselor Katz now studying to become a certified police chaplain. Katz also presented Kenda with a Thin Blue Line bracelet handcrafted by Emily Morrissey a local jewelry artist who has a number of disabilities and special challenges.

TALKERS News Notes. Longtime rock KQRS-FM, Minneapolis morning personality Tom Barnard announces he’s retiring from the Cumulus Media station after his final show on December 23 of this year. Barnard has been host of the KQRS morning program since 1986. The Minneapolis native is a Marconi Award winner as well as a member of the National Radio Hall of Fame…..At SiriusXM, Jessica Casano-Antonellis joins as SVP and head of communications, reporting to chief marketing officer Denise Karkos. In this new role, Casano-Antonellis will be responsible for all aspects of the company’s communications function, including strategic communications, brand reputation management and media relations. Karkos comments, “Jessica is a valued and respected leader who brings a wealth of strategic communications experience in the media, entertainment and technology industries to SiriusXM. She will be an incredible asset to the company and will play a key role as we continue to tell the story of SiriusXM as a leader in audio entertainment.” Casano-Antonellis was most recently with The Walt Disney Company where she had a significant role in the Company’s pivot to streaming, first with the launch of ESPN+ in 2018, followed by the successful launch of Disney+ in 2019…..iHeartMedia announces the first slate of podcasts from its NextUp Initiative that aims to empower participants of all backgrounds by giving them the tools to succeed in the podcast industry: from developing and marketing a podcast to using industry-leading software. iHeartMedia says that in this program, the NextUp fellows have learned from some of iHeartRadio’s top creators and have developed shows centered around their unique voices. The first podcast in the slate, “Beauty Translated,” is hosted by Carmen Laurent, and focuses on the transgender community in the South and touches on their experiences with coming out, launching careers, and family life.

January 6 Hearings, Russia-Ukraine War/NATO, The Economy, Abortion/SCOTUS, Immigration-Migrant Deaths, Israeli Politics, and R. Kelly Sentencing Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (6/29). The aftermath of former White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson’s testimony before the January 6 Committee; Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine and Vladimir Putin’s response to Finland’s and Sweden’s invitation to join NATO; the high price of food & gasoline, activity on the world’s financial markets, and concerns about a recession; reactions to the overturning of Roe v Wade and the end of the Supreme Court’s 2021-2022 term; immigration issues at the U.S.-Mexico border and the deaths of 51 migrants in San Antonio; Israel’s Knesset votes to dissolve; and R&B singer R. Kelly is sentenced to 30 years in prison for sexual abuse of underage girls were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.