Steele Returns to ‘FOX News 92.5’ in Naples-Ft. Myers; Radel to Drive Time. Effective today (9/25), Sun Broadcasting’s news/talk WFSX, Naples-Fort Myers “FOX News 92.5” makes changes to its drive time programming, bringing Drew Steele back to the station for morning drive duties and moving Trey Radel to the 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm daypart. About the changes, program director Casey Bartholomew tells the Naples Daily News, “We wanted to better serve the market and what better way than with two live, local shows. And Trey was more than happy to not have to get up (in the early morning).” Steele was host of the morning show on WFSX from 2012 through 2016. He comes back to Sun Broadcasting from Bonneville’s news/talk KSL-AM/FM, Salt Lake City. Radel replaced Steele in mornings when he left for Salt Lake City. Read the Daily News piece here.
Bowen Out at Cumulus Chicago. As reported by Chicago media maven Robert Feder, radio executive Peter Bowen exits the Cumulus Media cluster there after three years as vice president and market manager. As Feder points out, Bowen was responsible for bringing White Sox baseball and Chicago Bulls hoops to WLS-AM. The company told Feder, “Peter Bowen has left the company and we wish him well in his future endeavors. The open market manager role in Chicago is a priority for us and we are working to find the right leader for this important market as soon as possible.” See Feder’s column here.
Steve Dahl Re-Ups with WLS-AM. Also, as reported by Robert Feder, Chicago radio legend Steve Dahl re-ups with Cumulus Media to continue hosting his afternoon show on news/talk WLS-AM for another three years. Dahl hosts the program with cast mates Dag Juhlin and Brendan Greeley. Dahl tells Feder, “I’m proud of the work Dag, Brendan and I are doing every afternoon for WLS AM 890, and gratified that they like it, too. The show is funny, informative and apolitical. We could still use a little marketing, however, so I am currently in negotiations to buy the ‘Kathy’ half of the Eric and Kathy billboards.” Read Feder’s report here.
TRN Files to Appeal Dismissal of Suit Against Industry Syndicators. A year ago, the anti-trust lawsuit brought by Talk Radio Network against several industry syndicators including Westwood One, Compass Media Networks, WYD Media Management, and others was dismissed with prejudice and that dismissal affirmed. TRN is filing to appeal that dismissal to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. The appellate court will decide if it will hear the case.
TALKERS News Notes. Launching this fall on CRN Digital Talk Radio is a new program titled, “HEAR IT NOW – A Radio Document of Our World,” hosted by Thomas Ross Bond II. Bond calls the show “a program that focuses on the human-side of individuals who made an imprint on our world and the sounds of the times, in hope that another dimension is given to our understanding of our world and the human condition. Unlike other programs concentrating on controversy, we strive to focus on the life of our ‘guest,’ the human side, to find out about ‘them,’ where they grew up, what influenced their life, why they made the choices they did.”…..The Rhode Island political talk radio show, “The Coalition – Talk Radio for Independent Minds,” moves from Cumulus Media’s WPRO, Providence to the digital platform of GoLocalProv.com. The weekly, Friday evening show is hosted by Pat Ford, the chair of the Libertarian Party of Rhode Island and airs from 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm…..SiriusXM is presenting comprehensive coverage of the Presidents Cup golf tournament September 28 through October 1 at Liberty National Golf Club in Jersey City, New Jersey.
Trump Calls Out Athlete Protesters, North Korea Nuclear Threats/Sanctions, Graham-Cassidy Health Care Bill, Merkel Re-Election, Maria-Devastated Puerto Rico, Kingsman Film, MLB Playoff Push, College Football, and NFL Action Among Top News/Talk Stories Over the Weekend. The issue of athletes protesting during the national anthem after President Trump’s criticism; North Korea’s nuclear weapons program and new sanctions put upon the hermit kingdom; the push by Republicans to pass the Graham-Cassidy health care bill to replace the Affordable Care Act; Angela Merkel wins fourth term as Chancellor of Germany; the devastation of Puerto Rico caused by Hurricane Maria; the new Kingsman film tops It at the box office; the weekend’s MLB games with playoff implications; Saturday’s college football games; and Sunday’s NFL action were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio over the weekend, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.
KXL and Compass Media Talker Lars Larson Co-Starring Regular TV Segment. Pictured here during the “Left Hook, Right Jab” segment on KGW-TV, Portland is news/talk KXL, Portland and Compass Media Networks syndicated talk show host Lars Larson (right). Going against Larson in the debate-style segment is former Portland City Commissioner Steve Novick (left). Larson tells TALKERS magazine he’s been doing the TV segment for a few months now. “They wanted a standard ‘he said, he said’ format but I suggested a chess clock format. Each of us gets 90 seconds. Here’s the difference: we take turns leading off on a different question. You can weigh in for, say 20-30 seconds (or shorter or longer), hit the bell and the other person has to respond. He can go as long or short as he likes and then it switches back. Back and forth until both run out of time. It moves fast. It forces each to get right to the point (like Twitter).”
EXCLUSIVE TALKERS DIALOGUE: Terminated and Embattled KXNT, Las Vegas Talk Show Host Heidi Harris Speaks with Michael Harrison about the Events Leading Up to and Following CBS Choosing Not to Renew Her Contract as Morning Host. In an exclusive TALKERS interview conducted Thursday evening (9/21), TALKERS founder Michael Harrison talks to former KXNT, Las Vegas morning host Heidi Harris about CBS RADIO’s decision not to renew her contract that was about to expire in a few weeks in the wake of a controversial social media comment about gay adoption posted by the broadcaster. Although CBS has not cited the controversy as its reason for choosing not to renew Harris’ contract, the widespread speculation in the press and across the radio industry is that the host was let go because of negative blowback from organized activists in the gay community. Discussing the interview, Harrison states, “I entered this conversation hoping to give Heidi the chance to present her side of the story, but, perhaps, wishfully to see if there was any chance to smoothen out the situation and set the stage for CBS to reconsider its decision if she clarified her position short of actually apologizing. Apologizing is not something I would expect or encourage her to do. But it would be unfortunate if she left the station because of a misunderstanding of terms and today’s tendency for black and white thinking to rule the narrative.” To listen to the interview, please click here.
Yappy Tour Rolls into NewsmaxTV. Pictured above being interviewed by NewsmaxTV‘s John Bachman is Bernadette Duncan, author of one of the most-discussed radio books in the talk media industry, Yappy Days: Behind the Scenes with Newsers, Boozers, Schmoozers and Losers (Talkers Books, 2016). Former producer Duncan chronicles her 26 years as the woman behind the glass on shows hosted by such legends as Sally Jessy Raphael, Larry King, Tom Snyder, Lou Dobbs, Gil Gross, Charles Osgood and others covering a large swath of modern talk radio’s pre- and post-9/11 “golden era.” Plus, she tells stories about behind-the-scenes encounters with hundreds of quirky guests from the worlds of show business, politics, media, business and literature. Due to the strong response by hosts across the nation to the subject and Duncan’s lively air presence, the national “Yappy Tour” will continue to roll on through the remainder of 2017. Duncan has already appeared on more than 85 local and syndicated programs since the book’s release in September of 2016. Hosts and shows interested in booking Bernadette Duncan can do so by calling Barbara Kurland at 413-565-5413.
Music Radio News and Career Moves. Milwaukee’s WKTI “94.5 KTI Country” brings Brew City radio personality Karen Dalessandro aboard to host the afternoon drive daypart. Dalessandro is a Country Music Hall of Famer and a two-time CMA Personality of the Year who previously was a morning personality on iHeartMedia’s crosstown WMIL “FM 106” until “retiring” from the station back in March. About this new gig, Dalessandro says, “I made the switch to ‘94.5 KTI Country’ to join a staff that is excited about country music, committed to winning and actually living in Milwaukee. It’s refreshing to see this kind of radio still exists. [Scripps Milwaukee ] GM Tom Langmyer and PD Ryan Wild deserve much credit for believing that real people doing real radio is important to the community they serve. I spent 19 years hosting Milwaukee morning radio so to continue my career as music director/afternoons at WKTI is more than I could have imagined!”…..iHeartMedia names Nikki Corl marketing director for its Charlotte market operations and the rest of the Carolinas. She was most recently promotions director at iHeartMedia’s Richmond station group…..In Nashville, iHeartMedia CHR WRVW “107.5 The River” announces that Wells Adams begins hosting the 7:00 pm to 10:00 pm show (starting tonight). The 10-year market pro was most recently on the company’s sister classic rock WNRQ “105.9 The Rock” hosting afternoons. Adams was also a recent contestant on ABC-TV’s “The Bachelorette.” WRVW program director Jonathan Shuford says, “Wells is already a well-known and talented radio personality here in Music City, a reality show star, social influencer, and all-around great guy. It just made sense to marry his pedigree with Nashville’s most-listened to station and we’re excited to launch this new chapter in Nashville radio.”…..CBS RADIO’s WUSN, Chicago is presenting its third annual “Stars and Strings” show in honor of America’s veterans and their families on Wednesday, November 15 at The Chicago Theatre. The all-star lineup features: Brad Paisley, Chris Young, Darius Rucker, Kelsea Ballerini, Lady Antebellum, and Sam Hunt with a special appearance by Lindsay Ell. WUSN morning duo “Stylz & Roman” announced the concert on their program this morning.
iHeartRadio Music Festival Wraps Two Days in Las Vegas. Pictured here are iHeartMedia chief programming officer Tom Poleman (second from left) and iHeartMedia Entertainment Enterprises president John Sykes (right) with singer Demi Lovato (second from right) and an unidentified guest (left) backstage at the iHeartRadio Music Festival at the T-mobile Arena in Las Vegas. Some of the artists that played on Friday and Saturday night included: Coldplay, The Weeknd, DJ Khaled, Chris Stapleton, Lorde, Kings of Leon, Big Sean, P!NK, Miley Cyrus, Thirty Seconds to Mars, Niall Horan, David Guetta, Thomas Rhett, Harry Styles, Kesha and more, plus this year’s ‘Macy’s iHeartRadio Rising Sta’ winner, James Maslow.
Drew Steele to Exit Mornings on ‘92.5 FOX News’ in Fort Myers/Naples. Current WFSX, Estero, Florida (Fort Myers/Naples market) morning personality Drew Steele is leaving Sun Broadcasting’s news/talk station to join KSL-TV, Salt Lake City. The News/Press reports that station management is talking to former morning show host – and former U.S. Rep. – Trey Radel, among others, about the position. Radel left the morning show host position at the station in 2012 to successfully run for congress in Florida’s 19th District. However, he resigned from the seat in January of 2014 after a cocaine possession conviction in late 2013. Station manager Jim Schwartzel tells the News/Press they have talked with Radel as well as other candidates about the open position.
Bill Michaels Upped to OM for Cumulus Toledo Cluster. Programmer Bill Michaels – responsible for leading classic rock WXKR, sports talk WLQR “106.5 The Ticket,” talk WTOD-AM, and alternative WQQO-HD2/W264AK – is promoted to operations manager for Cumulus Media’s Toledo cluster and Monroe, Michigan property country WMIM “98.3 NASH Icon.” The cluster also includes country WKKO “K100” and classic hits WRQN. This is a newly created position and in addition to his new responsibilities, Michaels will continue to program WXKR, “100.7 The Zone,” WLQR and WTOD as well as host the WXKR midday show from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm. Cumulus RVP and market manager Andy Stuart says, “Bill and I have worked together for a long time and while I am quite certain that he has the experience, intuition and leadership skills necessary to lead our stations to greatness, I’m also quite certain he can handle my penchant for emailing and texting him at 3:00 am.”
Dan Conry Assumes PM Drive on ‘Power Talk 1360/1280’ in Modesto/Stockton. Talk show host Dan Conry joins iHeartMedia’s news/talk simulcast KFIV, Modesto and KWSX, Stockton – “Power Talk 1360/1280” for the 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm show. Conry says, “I’m extremely grateful for this opportunity with iHeartMedia in the Modesto/Stockton market. I’m excited to work with this team to take ‘Power Talk’ to the next level and I am very grateful to the leadership in Milwaukee, Madison and Sacramento talk radio for allowing me to sit in for some of the best talk talent in the country and keeping my show in the game.”
Dallas Cop Slayings Aftermath, The Presidential Race, Hillary Clinton Email Case, Michigan Bailiffs Slain, and NBA’s Tim Duncan Retires Among Top News/Talk Stories Yesterday (7/11). The aftermath of the slayings of five Dallas police officers and the deaths of two black men at the hands of police in Baton Rouge and Minneapolis; the activities of presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump; the GOP’s move to investigate whether Hillary Clinton lied to the FBI about the email issue; two Michigan bailiffs are slain in a courthouse; and NBA great Tim Duncan announces his retirement were some of the most-talked-about stories on news/talk radio yesterday, according to ongoing research from TALKERS magazine.
Odds & Sods. This Thursday, ESPN is covering the Celebration of Life service honoring legendary Tennessee women’s basketball coach Pat Summitt. The 7:00 pm ET broadcast will also be covered by ESPN Radio’s Ryan McGee, co-host of “Marty & McGee.”…..KDKA-FM, Pittsburgh “SportsRadio 93.7 The Fan” is holding its 2016 Fan Kickoff to the PNC Champions Club at Heinz Field on September 8. The CBS RADIO station’s event allows fans to take part in an exclusive evening that includes appetizers, cocktails, desserts, and unique cigars – this year at the Pittsburgh Steelers’ home stadium. It’s also a fundraiser for The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society via live and silent auctions featuring sports memorabilia, experiences and other items…..SRN Broadcasting (InternetFM.com,) and David Rusch Media (HomeImprovementUSA.net,) are launching the Home Improvement USA Radio Network that will air a variety of programs and features from across the country on a 24/7 basis. It will serve as a clearinghouse for programming for other terrestrial or Internet radio stations. Programming will center on home improvement, lawn and garden, energy efficiency, sustainable living, and product safety, among others…..“Motley Fool Money” with Chris Hill adds two New Hampshire affiliates to its roster: WNNH-FM, Concord and WTSN, Dover/Portsmouth…..SiriusXM is presenting live coverage of the Republican and Democratic National Conventions. Beginning Monday, July 18 for the Republican National Convention and Monday, July 25 for the Democratic National Convention, SiriusXM will transform its non-partisan P.O.T.U.S. (Politics of The United States) channel into “Convention Radio” featuring uninterrupted, gavel-to-gavel coverage from the convention floor. P.O.T.U.S channel hosts including Tim Farley, Michael Smerconish, Julie Mason, Michael Steele, and Rick Ungar will broadcast from each convention city, with White House correspondent Jared Rizzi reporting live from the convention floor.