Tag: "Scott Shapiro"
Newsmax TV to Be Carried on Comcast’s X1 Platform. In a major move for the Newsmax TV channel, Newsmax and Comcast have signed an agreement for the latter to carry the 24/7 cable news channel on the Xfinity TV X1 platform. Newsmax TV will initially launch to subscribers of Xfinity’s Digital Starter package that have an X1 device. Newsmax Broadcasting CEO Michael Clemente says, “Comcast is the largest cable operator in the nation and we appreciate their decision to recognize Newsmax TV as a valuable, independent programmer for their viewers.” Newsmax TV says it “consistently offers important viewpoints not covered elsewhere and continues to add talent to an impressive lineup that includes: Joe Walsh, Brett Winterble, Howie Carr, Wayne Allyn Root, Todd Schnitt, Joe Pags, and Jesse Lee Peterson, as well as Newsmax anchors John Bachman and Miranda Khan.” It adds that it is currently available in 50 million U.S. cable/satellite homes and expects to reach as many as 80 million such homes by the end of 2019. Clemente adds that the network plans to ramp up programming in the coming months as it prepares for 2020 presidential election coverage that will begin in earnest next year.
PPM Analysis: Sports Talk. Managing editor Mike Kinosian presents a look at the performances of stations based on data from Nielsen Audio’s August 2018 PPM survey, today focusing on sports talk radio. Sports talk listening heated up during the August survey as 74% of sports talk stations saw their 6+ weekly AQH share rise compared to the July 2018 survey. Looking at changes from August 2017 to August 2018, 67% of stations were up from a year ago. Entercom’s WFAN, New York – on the back of a three-tenths increase – ranked #1 (6+) in the Long Island market in August. The company’s KDKA-FM, Pittsburgh ranked #4, and WFAN, New York and Cumulus’ KNBR, San Francisco ranked #5 in their respective markets. See the whole report here.
RJ Bell and Chris Broussard & Rob Parker Host New FOX Sports Radio Programs. On the heels of last week’s end of the JT The Brick program and the “Steve Gorman Sports!” show, Premiere Networks today announces the launch of the shows that are rounding out the FOX Sports Radio network program schedule. Beginning today (9/17), “Straight Outta Vegas with RJ Bell” debuts from 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm ET as what Premiere calls “the first-ever national daily radio show focused on sports betting.” Las Vegas personality and founder/CEO of Pregame.com RJ Bell hosts the program that also features FOX Sports Radio personality Jonas Knox, plus famed betting experts Brad Powers and Steve Fezzik. Premiere says the weekday launch of the program comes after a successful year-long run as part of FSR’s weekend lineup on Friday and Saturday evenings. Also moving up from its weekend status is “The Odd Couple with Chris Broussard (left) & Rob Parker (right),” launching tonight from 7:00 pm to 10:00 pm ET. As part of the changes, “The Jason Smith Show with Mike Harmon” adds an hour, airing from 10:00 pm to 2:00 am ET. Premiere Networks SVP sports programming Don Martin and VP sports programming Scott Shapiro say in a joint statement, “This historic new lineup further solidifies FOX Sports Radio’s standing as the preeminent sports network in the nation. It’s now crystal clear that when you’re looking for the best, live sports-talk, this is the place to tune in. Listeners who want to be entertained, informed, and emotionally invested with the most compelling personalities and storytellers in the industry will be rewarded with every listening occasion.”
Zak Burns Gone from ‘KIRO Nights.’ Talk show host Zak Burns is no longer co-hosting “KIRO Nights” with Gee Scott at Bonneville’s KIRO-FM, Seattle. Burns joined the station two years ago to co-host the evening show with Jason Rantz, who left the program last fall to assume the morning drive show hosting duties at sister conservative news/talk KTTH. KIRO contributor Drew Barth has been sitting in with Scott since Burns’ departure.
Entercom to Relocate Offices to Philadelphia. In an interview with David Field in Philly.com, the Entercom president and CEO declined to comment on the “worst-kept secret” in Philadelphia – that the company is moving its corporate headquarters from Bala Cynwyd to a building on the Schuykill River in Philadelphia that it will share with Aramark (according to a recent report in the Philadelphia Business Journal). However, in the piece written by Bob Fernandez, Field acknowledges the intense work that the CBS RADIO merger has brought Entercom but says he’s happy with what the new-look company has accomplished so far. Regarding the move, it’s being reported that the new facility will not only be home to the corporate HQ but will also house the various radio station offices currently in numerous sites throughout the Philadelphia area. Read the piece here.
Rumor Confirmed: Mets Games to Air on WCBS-AM, New York in 2019 Season. The recent reports out of the Big Apple that Entercom has been wooing the New York Mets to bring their play-by-play to all-news WCBS-AM turn out to be true as the company announces it has struck a six-year deal with the MLB club. Mets games have aired on iHeartMedia’s WOR since the 2014 season. Entercom regional president and market manager Susan Larkin comments, “We’re pleased to be the new radio home of the Mets. We remain committed to bringing our listeners and partners the most exciting sports content from their hometown teams, especially in the New York metropolitan area, where we will be the radio home for both Major League Baseball clubs beginning in 2019.” As part of the deal, Entercom’s other New York radio stations – alternative WNYL ALT 92.3,” hot AC WNEW-FM “NEW 102.7 FM,” classic hits WCBS-FM and fellow all-news WINS-AM – will provide promotional support.
Crossover Media Group Sales to Handle Ad Sales Support for Sports Byline USA and BlueWirePods. Cross-platform content production and advertising sales rep firm Crossover Media Group Sales announces it is handling ad sales support for Sports Byline USA network. Sports Byline is led by founder and host Ron Barr and president Darren Peck and serves some 200 U.S. radio affiliates and some 500 additional stations globally as well as satellite radio, iHeartRadio, TuneIn, iTunes, CRN Digital, airlines’ in-flight channels and the American Forces Network. The company is also working with newly launched podcast network Blue Wire that is aggregating content from sports talk personalities. Bay Area-based Blue Wire was founded by former KNBR-AM, San Francisco host Kevin Jones. CMGS managing member Scott Calka says, “CMGS is rapidly becoming one-stop-shopping for marketers to reach a variety of fans across the panoply of sports talk.”
23 Stations Off the Air as a Result of Hurricane Florence. According to the FCC, as of yesterday (9/16), some 20 FM stations are off the air and three AM stations are off due to the impact of Hurricane Florence. Also, four television stations report being out of service and 7.2% of the region’s cell towers were reported off-line, with Brunswick, Cumberland, and Carteret Counties in North Carolina reporting the largest loss of cell service.
Kavanaugh Accusation, Florence Drenches the Carolinas, Border Patrol Serial Killer Case, Trump-Russia Investigation, Bob Woodward’s Trump Book, NFL Action, and MLB Playoff Push Among Top News/Talk Stories Over the Weekend. The sexual assault allegation against Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh; Hurricane Florence’s arrival and the resulting historic flooding in the Carolinas; the case of the U.S. border patrol agent charged in connection with four deaths; the investigation into possible connections between Trump campaign operatives and Russia agents and the related plea deal of former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort; Bob Woodward’s book, Fear: Trump in the White House; the weekend’s NFL action; and the Major League Baseball playoff push were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio over the weekend.
WPG, Atlantic City Morning Host Harry Hurley with Miss America 2019 Nia Franklin. Pictured above is WPGG, Atlantic City morning host Harry Hurley with Miss America 2019 Nia Franklin (Miss New York) during Franklin’s visit to the station today (9/17). Franklin discussed the year ahead for her as Miss America, saying she will continue her work with the performing arts and several children’s charities that’s she supports. Hurley presented the Miss America Foundation with a surprise $500 grant that will be designated to two charities of Franklin’s choice.
Music Radio News and Career Moves. In Dallas, Cumulus Media brings Nathan Fast aboard to co-host the morning show on KPLX “99.5 The Wolf” with current morning personality Lisa Taylor. He was most recently with Entercom’s crosstown CHR KVIL “AMP 103.7” as morning host. KPLX program director Mac Daniels says, “Nathan is an amazing, creative talent wrapped around the passion and work ethic of four people. With his leadership skills and winning spirit, we’re excited about the bright future for Nathan Fast and ‘The Wake Up With The Wolf Show’ on one of America’s leading country music brands. We’re excited to hear him and Lisa Taylor together in the morning.”…..iHeartMedia moves Vladimir “DJ Loui Vee” Scott from its Columbia, South Carolina station group to its Indianapolis offices to serve as program director for hip hop WZRL “REAL 98.3” and hip hop WTFX, Louisville “REAL 93.1.” iHeartMedia Indianapolis SVP of programming Mike Killabrew comments, “Vladimir possesses the creativity, passion, and leadership we look for in programmers. His direction and attention to detail will take WZRL and WTFX to the next level.”…..iHeartMedia Raleigh names Joe Johnson program director and afternoon drive personality for classic rock WRDU, Raleigh, effective September 24. Johnson held the same positions at the company’s WROV, Roanoke-Lynchburg…..Classic hits KGOR, Omaha debuts the “Mornings with Montez & Shari” featuring Montez and Shari Stone. Stone was most recently digital project coordinator and midday host at Salem Media Group’s crosstown Christian contemporary KGBI-FM. Montez was most recently afternoon host and music director at the iHeartMedia Omaha cluster’s CHR KISO “96.1 Kiss FM.” The duo say, “Being from Omaha, we both couldn’t be more excited about the opportunity to serve our community in a fun way because we love this town. We can’t wait to entertain every morning and grow our big, radio family.”…..Envision Networks announces that the “Full Metal Jackie” program – hosted by Jackie Kajzer – is now airing on the American Forces Network, broadcasting to United States military servicemembers and their families at home and abroad. AFN Radio director Scott Stover says, “American Forces Network Radio is proud to bring Full Metal Jackie to our US military serving overseas as they listen to our alternative music channel ‘Freedom Radio.’ We thank ‘Full Metal Jackie’ and Envision Networks for partnering with AFN Radio to ‘serve those that serve.’”
iHeartMedia Releases May Financial Figures; Net Income in the Black. As iHeartMedia winds its way through Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization, it is releasing monthly financial statements with a bunch more information than the privately-owned company used to reveal in its quarterly reports. Although iHM’s revenue dipped from $417.9 million in April to $318.7 million in May, net income went from a loss of $139.8 million to a gain of $57.7 million. Operating income also rose from April to May – going from $63.9 million to $80.9 million.
‘Rip City Sports Radio’ Announces New Programming. Portland, Oregon sports talker KPOJ “Rip City Radio 620” and collaborator NBC Sports Northwest announce a new weekday lineup starting Thursday (7/19). Changes include sports talk radio pro Brian Noe taking over for “The Dwight & Aaron Show” in the 12:00 noon to 3:00 pm daypart and the re-launch of the evening program, “The Bridge,” hosted by Serena Winters. Noe has been a national host at FOX Sports Radio since 2013 during which he hosted a Saturday evening show with Ephraim Salaam and a Sunday morning show with Andy Furman. Noe has also hosted shows with Rob Parker, former ESPN NBA insider Chris Broussard, former NBA slam dunk champion Cedric Ceballos, and former Notre Dame quarterback Brady Quinn. Aaron Fentress and Dwight Jaynes will return to NBC Sports Northwest as digital contributors, taking on bigger roles covering all sports on NBCSportsNorthwest.com. Serena Winters was previously co-host of “The Bridge” and has been elevated to primary host. She’ll be accompanied by a variety of expert contributors. Rich Moore is PD for the iHeartMedia station and he says, “We are excited to be adding Brian Noe to the team and our daily lineup at ‘NBCSNW Rip City Radio 620.’ He’s a great young talent and will help us strengthen our platform with NBC Sports Northwest and for the Portland fans.”
FOX Sports Radio and Clay Travis Extend Deal. Nationally syndicated sports media personality Clay Travis and FOX Sports Radio (a division of Premiere Networks) announce they’ve come to terms on a new, multi-year agreement. The deal will keep Travis in his current role as host of the network’s morning drive (6:00 am to 9:00 am ET) program, “Outkick The Coverage with Clay Travis.” Premiere SVP sports programming Don Martin and VP sports programming Scott Shapiro say, “We’re excited by what we’re building with this network and ‘Outkick The Coverage with Clay Travis’ is an integral piece of the puzzle. We’re proud to have Clay leading our lineup every weekday morning with his bold, opinionated, and entertaining brand of sports talk, which continues to drive positive results for our affiliates and advertising partners. We look forward to working together for many years to come.”
Sweet New Studios. Pictured above are WBZ-FM, Boston “98.5 The Sports Hub” personalities (from l-r) Mike Felger, Marshall Hook, and Matt McCarthy in the station’s new studios. The station began broadcasting from Beasley Media Group Boston’s new facilities in Dorchester this week.
TALKERS Continues Posting Videos Today of the Recent TALKERS 2018: Full Speed Ahead! Convention – Today’s Post: Panel Discussion, “Programming News/Talk Radio.” Today (7/17), TALKERS magazine continues posting individual events from the recent TALKERS 2018: Full Speed Ahead! convention held in New York City on June 8. Each business day, another session or activity will be posted in the order that they originally took place. Today’s 15th installment is the panel discussion titled “Programming News/Talk Radio.” It is moderated by TALKERS managing editor Mike Kinosian; introduced by KFBK/KSTE, Sacramento PD, Bill White; and featuring panelists CFRB, Toronto PD and Bell Media national news/talk format head, Mike Bendixen; iHeartMedia national brand coordinator, news/talk/sports programming and director of AM programming Miami/Fort Lauderdale, Grace Blazer; WOR, New York assistant PD, Scott Lakefield; WBAL, Baltimore PD, Scott Masteller; and WABC, New York PD, Craig Schwalb. Already posted: the panel discussion titled, “Talk Media: The Big Picture.” It is moderated by ABC News Radio VP/GM, Steve Jones; introduced by “The Cats Roundtable” host, John Catsimatidis; and featuring panelists iHeartMedia SVP news/talk/sports programming Chris Berry; Beasley Media Group EVP programming, Justin Chase; Weiss Agency EVP, Heather Cohen; Cumulus Media EVP content & programming Mike McVay; and Premiere Networks president, Julie Talbott. Already posted: the panel discussion titled “Hosting a Talk Show in 2018.” It is moderated by Cumulus Media VP of news/talk and PD of WMAL, Washington, DC, Bill Hess; introduced by iHeartMedia VP programming/national news/talk brand coordinator and PD KOA, Denver, Greg Foster; and featuring panelists Howie Carr Radio Network host, Howie Carr; WPGG, Atlantic City host, Harry Hurley; Fox News Radio/Fox News Channel host, Brian Kilmeade; Westwood One host Chris Plante; Talk Media Network host Tom Sullivan; WPRO, Providence host, Dan Yorke; and KTSA, San Antonio host, Jack Riccardi; the panel discussion titled “Attracting Younger Demos to Talk Radio.” It is moderated by Mike “Bax” Baxendale, morning co-host, WAQY-FM (Rock 102), Springfield, MA; introduced by WPHT, Philadelphia host Rich Zeoli; and featuring panelists Armstrong & Getty Show co-hosts Jack Armstrong and Joe Getty; WRKO, Boston PD, Michael Czarnecki; WRHU-FM/WRHU.org, Hofstra University OM, John T. Mullen; WABC, New York host Sid Rosenberg; and Compass MediaNetworks/Newsmax host, Todd Schnitt; a video of the donation given by WPGG, Atlantic City morning host Harry Hurley to the Broadcasters Foundation of America and accepted by its president Jim Thompson; convention luncheon greetings by WNYM “970 AM The Answer,” New York morning host Joe Piscopo with an introduction by Salem SVP Phil Boyce along with the posthumous presentation of the “Humanitarian of the Year” award to the late Texas and Ohio radio talk show host Matt Patrick by Michael Harrison with an acceptance by his widow and show producer, Paula Ryan; the panel discussion titled “Adding the Video Component to Talk Radio” moderated by Livestream head of news, Clayton Rose and featuring panelists Krantz Media Group CEO, Gary Krantz and KTRS, St Louis host, McGraw Milhaven; the panel discussion titled “Generating Talk Radio Revenue in 2018” moderated by TALKERS VP/executive editor, Kevin Casey; introduced by Crossover Media Group managing member, Ron Hartenbaum; and featuring panelists Asa RX host, Asa; Bold Gold Media Group CEO, Vince Benedetto; Howie Carr Radio Network president, Kathy Carr; Westwood One president, Suzanne Grimes; WBAL, Baltimore president/GM, Cary Pahigian; and KSCO/KOMY, Santa Cruz owner, Michael Zwerling; the special presentation by Amplifi Media CEO, Steven Goldstein titled “Radio Broadcasters and Smart Speakers with an introduction by GCN personality, Dr. Daliah Wachs ; a special presentation by PodcastOne chairman and CEO, Norm Pattiz titled “Radio Broadcasters and Podcasting” with an introduction by Voice of America and National Public Radio anchor/reporter, Lori Lundin; a special presentation by WFAN personality, Mike Francesa titled “Sports Talk’s Role in Media and Popular Culture” with an introduction by author and former radio producer, Bernadette Duncan; Salem SVP, Phil Boyce’s address titled “What Has Donald Trump Done to Talk Radio?”; the fireside chat between TALKERS publisher, Michael Harrison and Beasley Media Group CEO, Caroline Beasley including Harrison’s presentation of the 2018 “Woman of the Year” award to Beasley; Harrison’s fireside chat with FOX News Radio/FOX News Channel mega-star, Brian Kilmeade with an introduction by Westwood One syndicated host, Walter Sterling and special remarks by Sean Hannity; opening remarks by the convention’s co-emcees, TalkersRadio GM, David Bernstein and Good Day Networks/DJV Show CEO/host, Doug Stephan; KGO, San Francisco host, Ethan Bearman delivering the event’s welcoming remarks and Pioneer Valley Radio GM/host, Brad Shepard introduction of Bearman; and the presentation of the Gene Burns Memorial Award for Freedom of Speech (“Freedom of Speech Award”) by TALKERS managing editor, Mike Kinosian to SiriusXM Satellite Radio host, book publisher, Hunter College professor, and former New York Daily News/Pulitzer prize-winning journalist, Karen Hunter. To view the page, please click here.
NAB Announces Marconi Finalists. The finalists for the National Association of Broadcasters’s 2018 Marconi Awards have been announced. The winners will be revealed at the NAB Radio Show at the Awards Dinner & Show on September 27 in Orlando. Of the five stations nominated for Legendary Station of the Year, four are spoken-word outlets: iHeartMedia’s KOA-AM, Denver; Cumulus Media’s WBAP-AM, Dallas; and Cox Media Group’s WHIO-AM, Dayton and WOKV-AM/FM, Jacksonville. News/Talk Station of the Year Nominees are: CMG’s KRMG-AM, Tulsa; Entercom’s KYW-AM, Philadelphia; Tribune’s WGN-AM, Chicago; Townsquare Media’s WKXW, Trenton; and Hubbard Radio’s WTOP-FM, Washington. See the whole list here.
Cohen Victim Joe Walsh Says He’s ‘Gotta Own’ What He Said. The list of politicians and media pros who’ve been fooled by comedian and producer Sacha Baron Cohen for his new Showtime program “Who Is America?” is lengthy. Last Friday, TALKERS pointed to a THR piece in which WGAC-AM, Augusta personality Austin Rhodes detailed his experience being taped (and fooled) for the program. Former congressman and Salem Radio Network syndicated talk host Joe Walsh was also a victim and he – like Rhodes – is taking it in stride. Borat – who tricked Walsh into traveling to Washington to receive an “award” from an Israeli TV network as a “friend of Israel” – got Walsh to read phony ad copy for a “course” that trains kids to wield guns. Walsh says, “I gotta own what I said.” Read the CBS piece here.
Bill Handel (Reluctantly) Celebrates 25 Years at KFI, Los Angeles. As reported by LARadio.com, Bill Handel – who apparently hates studio decorations and celebrations – was forced to recognize his quarter-century mark at iHeartMedia’s KFI, Los Angeles as an air talent. Handel started in 1993 on weekends doing his legal show. He moved to morning drive and has been one of the most successful news/talk morning personalities in American radio.
Trump-Putin Meeting, Trump-Russia Investigation, Illegal Immigration Policy, Sacha Baron Cohen Show, U.S.-China Trade War, Brexit Complications, Elon Musk-Cave Rescuer Spat, and MLB All-Star Week Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (7/16). Monday’s meeting between President Donald Trump and Russia’s Vladimir Putin; the investigation into possible connections between Trump campaign operatives and Russia agents, including the indictment by special counsel Robert Mueller of 12 Russian agents for hacking; the Trump Administration’s illegal immigration policies; the duping of numerous guests on Sacha Baron Cohen’s “Who Is America?” TV show; the Trump tariffs and concerns about a U.S.-China trade war; British Prime Minister Theresa May’s attempts to craft a strategy for leaving the EU; the public spat between Elon Musk and Thailand cave rescuer Vernon Unsworth; France beats Croatia for the soccer World Cup; and the Major League Baseball All-Star week 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. A shocker in San Diego as Shelly Dunn of KFMB-FM’s “Dave, Shelly and Chainsaw” morning program announces she will retire from the show and the radio biz after a 36-year radio career and 28-and-a-half years on the program. Adding spice to this news are reports in San Diego that the morning show’s contract comes up next month and there’s speculation about the status of negotiations as some industry watchers wonder if TV-centric Tegna wishes to continuing owning the radio stations it got in the Midwest TV deal that also landed it KFMB-TV. If the station is for sale, it may not want to burden a new owner with a lucrative talent deal – even for a show that is as successful as “Dave, Shelly and Chainsaw.” Others wonder if Entercom will try to woo the show over to handle mornings on embattled, fledgling sports talker KWFN “97.3 The Fan.”…..iHeartMedia announces Rachel “Rach” Viggiano is the new midday personality at CHR WIOQ, Philadelphia “Q102.” Station PD Jared Fallon says, “On the search for our next star, I was looking for someone who’s passionate about our brand and engaged in the lifestyle of our audience, so as soon as I met Rach I knew she was exactly what ‘Q102’ Philly needed! Between her upbeat energy and humor, she is the perfect fit for our listeners.” Rach joins the Philadelphia market from WPUR-FM, Atlantic City, New Jersey where she was morning host…..Air personality and programmer Toni Marie is leaving Buck Owens Broadcasting’s country KRJK, Bakersfield “The Bull 97.3” where she was PM drive host and music director for an opportunity yet-to-be-disclosed. This was her second tour with Buck Owens Broadcasting. She was music director for country KUZZ from 2009 through 2015…..In Santa Rosa, California, Carey Edwards is the new program director and morning personality at Redwood Empire Stereocasters-owned country KBBL “106.5 The Bull.” Edwards was most recently morning host at Riviera Broadcasting’s adult contemporary KOAI, Phoenix…..Morning personality John Balginy exits Sandhill Media’s country KUPI, Idaho Falls, Idaho as Jeff Roper joins the station as program director and morning host. Balginy says in a Facebook post, “For the first time in 27 years, I will not be waking up listeners in Southeast Idaho. The ‘99 KUPI ‘Breakfast Boys’ are no longer! I would like to thank my co-hosts for going on this ride with me – Dennis Carlson, Phillip Moon, Kenny Mac, Brother Dale & Jess Jennings, and Cory Daniels. It’s time for this old man to sleep in for the first time in over a quarter of a century. A big thank you to all of the great listeners who have tuned in all these years.”…..The second episode of the “iHeartRadio Presents: Inside the Studio’ podcast has been released and features an exclusive interview with Dave Matthews. Rolling Stone contributor Joe Levy interviews Matthews, hitting subjects including the six-year gap between records, the year he took off from music, and the secret connection between his band and Black Sabbath.
How Radio Is Handling Harvey. Tropical storm Harvey was a hurricane when it hit the Gulf Coast of Texas on Friday evening and is being called the strongest hurricane to make landfall in the U.S. in more than 10 years. Obviously, the intense rain brought by the storm has caused widespread flooding in the region and Houston has been the recipient of some of the most serious floodwaters. iHeartMedia’s Houston news/talk KTRH “News Radio 740” is being simulcast across all of the company’s Corpus Christi stations. In Houston, talk KPRC is off the air due to water damage to its transmitter, but “Sunny 99.1,” “94.5 The Buzz,” “93.7 The Beat,” KTRH, and “Sports Talk 790 AM” have been broadcasting around the clock since Friday morning. The company says the region lost a station vehicle and numerous employees’ homes have been affected by the storm, on-air talent, operational staff, sellers and managers are on-site to answer phones and direct listeners to the appropriate community resources. Also, the Red Cross is featured across all of iHeartMedia’s station websites letting people know where to find information and to encourage donations. Salem Media Group’s Salem Radio Network News and Townhall News have been airing round-the-clock appeals for donations for the non-profit relief organization Save The Children, already on the ground in Texas and Louisiana. SRN vice president/news & talk programming Tom Tradup says, “With SRN based in Dallas — and Salem radio colleagues operating in Houston and San Antonio — this critical national news story took on an even more compelling, personal nature because Hurricane Harvey was devastating our friends, colleagues, and families throughout the region.” Tradup says Salem deployed veteran talk host Sam Malone in Houston and SRN News southwest correspondent Val DeOre in Corpus Christi to offer analysis and perspective on the impact of Harvey’s high winds and 25-30 inches of rain.
Broadcasters Foundation of America Comes to Aid of Broadcasters. Broadcasters affected by Hurricane Harvey are being encouraged to find out if they qualify for emergency aid from the Broadcasters Foundation of America. Broadcasters can complete the emergency grant request form on the website at https://broadcastersfoundation.org/emergency-grant-form/. The Broadcasters Foundation’s emergency relief program distributes one-time grants of $1,000 each after a disaster, such as a hurricane, tornado, fire, flood, or other serious misfortune. The expedited emergency grant application process is streamlined to provide assistance as quickly as possible. BFoA chairman Dan Mason says, “The Broadcasters Foundation is a safety net in an emergency. When a colleague’s roof is suddenly blown away, their belongings destroyed, or their families displaced, the Broadcasters Foundation can step in quickly. We need everyone in our business to help us ensure that all broadcasters in need are aware of the Broadcasters Foundation.” The BFoA works closely with state broadcast associations to ensure that colleagues who are in need know about the foundation and that they can apply for aid. The Texas and Louisiana Broadcasters Associations already have been contacted and are working with the Broadcasters Foundation to get the message to broadcasters in their area who might need help. Following last year’s floods in Louisiana, the Broadcasters Foundation awarded nearly $100,000 to radio and TV professionals, including account executives, on-air personalities, producers, program, music, and traffic directors, and more. The Broadcasters Foundation also delivered aid to colleagues who were struck by Hurricane Sandy in the New York area in 2012, the tornadoes in Joplin in 2011, and Hurricane Matthew in the Carolinas last year. Following Hurricane Katrina in 2005, the Broadcasters Foundation awarded a total of $250,000 to 250 broadcasters.
Westwood One Reveals Audience Demos for On-Demand Listening. The data indicating who is using on-demand audio comes from Nielsen’s Total Audience measurement delves into the demographics of those listening to its local on-demand content from Cumulus Media-owned radio stations and national on-demand content from Westwood One syndicated programs. Cumulus Media EVP of corporate marketing and Westwood One president Suzanne Grimes says, “It’s hard to believe, but this is the first ever study of the demographic profile of on-demand radio content. Our biggest finding is that on-demand content skews more female than AM/FM radio content across all genres. This is an incredible insight for brands and content creators, as it opens up new opportunities to connect with women.” Other key findings include: Information-based on-demand shows (news/talk, sports) skew younger than the AM/FM audience, while entertainment-based on-demand shows attract a similar audience to AM/FM; the median age of news/talk on demand listeners is eight years younger than the AM/FM audience, and the sports audience is seven years younger; among adults 25-54, more than 40% of on demand news/talk listeners are women, compared to 30% of AM/FM listeners; and the younger the listener, the more likely they are to consume on-demand content on a mobile device. See more here.
FOX Sports Radio Adds R.J. Bell for Weekends. Las Vegas sports-betting pro R.J. Bell – who is also founder and CEO of Pregame.com – joins FOX Sports Radio to host weekend programs for the network. “Straight Outta Vegas with R.J. Bell” debuts on September 1, airing live Fridays from 8:00 pm to 9:00 pm ET and on Saturdays from 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm ET. FSR says Bell and Las Vegas radio personality Steve Cofield, along with Pregame.com’s top analysts, will give listeners the true Vegas perspective on all the leading sports stories and the major games, including how breaking news and injury updates affect the odds. Bell will continue to serve as a contributor to FOX Sports Radio’s 24/7 lineup, including Colin Cowherd’s “Blazing Five” podcast, the “JT The Brick Show with Tomm Looney,” and “Steve Gorman SPORTS.” Premiere Networks and FOX Sports Radio VP of sports programming Scott Shapiro says, “We’re excited to welcome R.J. Bell to FOX Sports Radio, adding to the strongest lineup of sports-talk personalities in the industry. There has never been more demand for the Vegas perspective in the world of sports. R.J. has proven to be a credible national voice for years who brings a uniquely interesting outlook for both casual and hardcore sports fans.”
TALKERS News Notes. Listeners to Hearst’s news/talk WBAL and rock WIYY “98 Rock” for Baltimore Ravens programming this year will hear four former Ravens on the radio. Dennis Pitta, Todd Heap, Justin Forsett and Jarret Johnson will appear for four games each, joining play-by-play team Gerry Sandusky and Stan White…..SiriusXM is announcing the addition of former NFL quarterback Phil Simms to the Mad Dog Sports Radio channel where the longtime CBS Sports television color man will join host Christopher “Mad Dog” Russo each week for “Simms and the Mad Dog,” an hour-long program where the duo will discuss the news from the league that week and preview the coming weekend’s matchups. Simms will make his debut on Thursday, September 7 from 4:00 pm to 5:00 pm ET…..Also, former Florida State and NFL quarterback Danny Kanell is joining SiriusXM as a daily host on the college sports channel. Beginning today (8/28), Kanell will host “Playbook” every weekday afternoon from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm ET with co-host Jason Horowitz. Kanell says, “I’m honored and thrilled for the opportunity to join the SiriusXM family and I look forward to contributing to a company that is made up of such incredible people.”
Harvey Hits Texas, Trump Pardon’s Arpaio, Trump Targets China Tariffs, Berkeley Rally Violence, ‘Game of Thrones’ Season Finale, MTV’s Video Music Awards, Mayweather-McGregor Fight, MLB Action, and NFL Pre-Season Action Among Top News/Talk Stories Over the Weekend. Hurricane Harvey dumps enormous amounts of rain on Texas hitting Houston and the Gulf Coast particularly hard; the reaction to President Trump’s pardon of convicted former Maricopa County sheriff Joe Arpaio; Trump reiterated desire for tariffs on Chinese imports to level trade imbalance; “anti-facists” attack conservative protestors at rally in Berkeley, California; the finale of this season’s “Game of Thrones” series; Sunday’s MTV Video Music Awards and the politically oriented speeches at the event; Saturday’s Floyd Mayweather–Conor McGregor fight; Major League Baseball action; and NFL pre-season activity were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio over the weekend.
Brian Joyce Serves as PA Announcer at Chattanooga Lookouts Game. Pictured above is WGOW, Chattanooga and WYAY, Atlanta talk show host Brian Joyce in the broadcast booth at AT&T Field. After hosting his 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm show on WGOW, then his afternoon drive show on WYAY, Atlanta “Newsradio 106.7,” Joyce hustled down to the ballpark to serve as PA announcer for the Lookouts’ game against the Mississippi Braves.
Music Radio News and Career Moves. Taking on the assistant operations manager position at Cumulus Media’s Peoria station group is Brian Scott. As of September 5, he’ll be working with country WFYR “NASH FM 97.3” and CHR WZPW. Cumulus Peoria OM Matt Bahan says, “We’re thrilled that Brian Scott is taking the programming reigns in Peoria with WFYR and WZPW. His passion is obvious, and his attention to detail and history of great ratings and success speak for themselves. Brian will be a tremendous asset to our already strong programming team.”…..WPRI-TV, Providence is one of a number of media outlets reports that religious broadcaster Educational Media Foundation has signed a deal to buy FM signal WBRU, Providence. The station has been affiliated with Brown University since the 1960s as a rock and alternative rock outlet. The station was put up for sale in the spring after the not-for-porofit Brown Broadcasting Service board determined was not a viable business under the current operating structure. It’s expected EMF will install the “K-Love” format on the station, possibly as early as Friday (9/1)…..From Blaine Thompson’s Indiana Radio Watch comes news that, “after roughly six weeks, Tiny exits as morning host at Swick Broadcasting-owned hot AC WLKI, Angola, Indiana” ( in the northeast corner of the state). Mike Scott will take over the morning show. He’ll also voice-track airshifts for the Swick Broadcasting-owned Local Radio Networks country and classic hits 24 hour formats…..Indiana-based Woof Boom Radio acquires a five-station cluster in Lima, Ohio from Childers Media Group. The company is acquiring CMG from principal Matt Childers who will continue to manage the Lima cluster for Woof Boom. Childers bought the stations from Maverick Media four years ago…..iHeartMedia Portland launches the new “Alt 102.3, Portland’s New Alternative” and brings in the syndicated “The Woody Show” to anchor mornings. The station is fed from the HD2 channel of iHeartMedia’s CHR KKRZ to translator K272EL at 102.3 FM. Program director Ben Marcotte says, “Portland has an avid alternative rock fan base and ‘The Woody Show’ has built an incredibly compelling and entertaining brand that we can’t wait to share with our listeners.”…..Marc Radio closes on purchase of classic hits WXJZ, Gainesville from JVC Broadcasting. Marc paid $500,000 for the station and says in a press release that it is “bullish on the Gainesville-Ocala market.” Marc Radio says it has no plans to change the format. General manager Dave Cobb comments, “What’s especially important about this purchase is that it provides our company with yet another signature item on the menu for advertisers to reach the audiences they covet.”…..“Radio’s Best Friend” Art Vuolo has posted a video tribute to late actor and radio personality Jay Thomas, who passed away last week at age 69 of cancer. See the video here.
Todd Schnitt and Len Berman to Host Mornings on WOR, New York. Legendary New York news/talk station WOR announces it will debut the new morning program, “Len Berman and Todd Schnitt in the Morning,” effective January 26. iHeartMedia says the program will “focus on New York and feature interactive programming, showcasing what local listeners are talking about in news, sports, entertainment and pop culture.” Both Berman and Schnitt are native New Yorkers. Schnitt has been based in Tampa and currently hosts his nationally syndicated, eponymous talk show via Compass Media Networks, which he’ll continue to do in addition to the New York morning show. Berman is an “Emmy-Award winning sportscaster and New York Times best-selling author who has covered just about every major sports event including multiple Super Bowls, World Series and Olympics during his 40-year career in broadcasting. He was a long-time sports anchor for WNBC-TV, New York.” Regular TALKERS readers are aware that Schnitt, in addition to his syndicated talk show, hosted the “MJ Morning Show” on CHR WFLA-FM, Tampa for many years. iHeartMedia market president Joe Puglise says, “Len is a well-known sports reporter and this opportunity will also showcase his other skills and personality. Listeners will immediately engage with Todd’s quick wit and creative take on the things that impact New Yorkers.” Schnitt adds, “Len Berman is the perfect co-host, he is a well-known New Yorker and brings a ton of wit, wisdom and street smarts to the microphone. Together we are very excited to construct a new local, engaging and entertaining morning show for New York.” iHeartMedia tried simulcasting WWDC, Washington “DC 101” morning personality Elliot Segal on WOR after parting company with longtime morning host John Gambling, but that lasted only a month, ending in February of 2014. Regarding his move to NYC, Schnitt adds, “Locating our [Compass syndicated] show in the heart of New York City will be a huge benefit to our national listeners and help drive ratings for our affiliates. I look forward to continuing to work with Compass Media Networks, our affiliates and sponsors.”
Premiere Names Shapiro VP – Sports Programming. Former ESPN Radio program director Scott Shapiro joins Premiere Networks in a newly created position of vice president of sports programming. His duties will include overseeing daily execution of sports content, including the Fox Sports Radio Network. Premiere Networks senior vice president of sports programming Don Martin comments, “Scott’s experience producing some of the most successful, multi-platform sports programming speaks for itself. I am excited for the opportunity to team up with such a class act. His addition reaffirms our commitment to providing the best sports entertainment content the industry has to offer, along with unique and valuable opportunities for our partners.” Shapiro remarks, “I greatly look forward to working with the talented team in place. There is tremendous growth potential and a real opportunity to develop outstanding sports content. The sky is the limit in terms of the talent, infrastructure, and resources available.” In addition to programming ESPN Radio, Shapiro’s resume includes being producer of that sports network’s “Mike & Mike” morning show; he previously was assistant program director/executive producer of WQXI “The Zone,” Atlanta.
Daunais, Walker Get Westwood One EVP – Regional Sales Stripes. Atlanta-based Jim Daunais and Dallas-based Tim Walker are appointed executive vice presidents in Westwood One‘s network sales division. Daunais’ responsibilities are in the southeast region – Walker’s duties are in the southwest. Westwood One president Steve Shaw comments, “Hot off the heels of promoting Kim Bryant to lead west coast sales, we are on an accelerated path to building an exceptional, preeminent sales organization. Jim and Tim are uniquely qualified to lead our southeast and southwest regions. Their respective abilities to manage, strategize, and effectively deliver client solutions will drive more revenue success across our platforms.” Daunais is “excited for the opportunity to continue” his more than 10-year Westwood One career, where he works “alongside Steve and the rest of our incredibly talented management team, and to build upon the company’s rich history as the leader of all things audio.” Walker states he is looking forward “to leading the southwest region and bringing integrated solutions to our clients and agencies.” It is a promotion for Daunais, who joined the company in 2004. Most recently, he was Westwood One’s senior vice president, sales and vice president of southeast sales. His prior background includes being an account executive for MLB‘s New York Mets. Walker is rejoining Westwood One. He spent the last three years as Cumulus Media‘s director of national sales for the southwest region. Prior to that, Walker was national sales manager for Cumulus-owned stations in Dallas and Houston; he had a similar title for CBS Radio Dallas; and he was a Westwood One account executive (2000 – 2002) in the company’s Dallas office.
John McConnell Named EVP at Workhouse Media. Radio management pro John McConnell is named executive vice president for talent and content management company Workhouse Media. In this role, McConnell will oversee Workhouse Media’s East Coast offices and he will serve in a new senior management role for the company. A longtime ABC Radio executive, McConnell has been managing his own firm for the past six years. Workhouse Media principal and CEO Paul B. Anderson comments, “John comes to Workhouse Media with a powerful combined background in programming, syndication and strategy. His track record is both broad and deep, and the industry recognizes his impeccable reputation for integrity and results.”
Odds & Sods. Today (1/20) begins Steve Deace‘s relationship with the USA Radio Networks. With the move from Genesis Communications Network, Deace’s program moves from an evening live airing (9:00 pm to 12:00 midnight) to live in afternoon drive, Eastern Time…..Following the path of New York’s Christian talk WMCA, New York, Salem Communications-owned KKMS, Minneapolis takes on “The Mission” brand. Salem rolled out “The Answer” as the brand for its news/talk stations and it appears likely most if not all of the company’s Christian talk stations will become “The Mission.”…..Tomorrow (1/21) marks the fifth anniversary of the internet program the Nicole Sandler show at radioornot.com. Sandler began her digital program after the demise of Air America Radio in 2010.
Non-Comms Rocking the Boat. For those interested in bold, new developments in music radio, check out Jeff McKay’s piece in our sister publication, RadioInfo, exploring the non-comm stations creating targeted-yet-daring rock and pop formats for hungry audiences. Many listeners still see public radio as either left-leaning news/talk or jazz- and classic music-oriented. But stations such as KCSN, Los Angeles; WXPN, Philadelphia; KCMP, Minneapolis; and KKXT, Dallas are bucking that trend and drawing in younger audiences. Read more here.
Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Resonates Throughout News/Talk Radio. As reported yesterday (1/19), news/talk radio hosts, programs, stations and networks buzzed with conversation inspired by Martin Luther King, Jr. Day – memorializing the birthdate of the slain civil rights leader of the turbulent 1960s. Shows covering the spectrum of political and ideological approaches including urban, progressive and conservative positions all found pertinent subject matter for discussion to commemorate the annual Federal holiday, lifting race relations to the most-talked-about topic of the day. Pictured here is WOLB, Baltimore morning legend Larry Young (third from right) at a ceremony in Baltimore held last week on the actual birthdate of the historic activist. Young – a longtime member of the TALKERS Heavy Hundred – tells TALKERS,“One of my proudest moments was to have planted in 1985 the only MLK Jr. tree on state house property in the USA. On his actual birthdate on January 15 we did a re-dedication and I said, ‘King put before us a serious vision that we would be one nation under God and indivisibly one America.’ And I want to believe that even today I can still believe in his vision.”
State of the Union/Obama Tax Plan, ‘American Sniper’ Film, MLK Jr. Day/‘Selma’ Film, ISIS Violence/Two Japanese Hostages Held, 2016 Presidential Prospects, and NFL Conference Championships Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (1/19). This week’s State of the Union Address and President Obama’s expected announcement of his tax proposal; the political arguments surrounding the film “American Sniper”; the observation of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday and the concurrent release of the film “Selma”; the ongoing violence perpetrated by ISIS and its threat to execute two Japanese hostages; the potential candidates for president in 2016; and the weekend’s NFL conference championships were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS.