General Music Radio Industry News
Taylor Swift Album Promotion Moves into Overdrive at iHeartMedia. Yesterday, RadioInfo reported about the Taylor Swift “Secret Session” program set to air on digital platform iHeartRadio and iHeartMedia CHR stations. Now, the company announces even more appearances by Swift – sponsored by Diet Coke – on the company’s shows as she plugs the release of her new album 1989. Here’s a rundown of the country-turned-pop star’s scheduled appearances: She’ll guest host “American Top 40” this weekend and be featured on “Direct From Hollywood with Ryan Seacrest” on October 27. She will also appear as a special guest during “On with Mario Lopez” on October 29. On October 30, Swift is co-hosting “On Air with Ryan Seacrest” for the show’s entire four-hour broadcast live from New York City. iHeartMedia says this will be the first time an artist has co-hosted the entire radio program, as well as the first time the full show is presented by a single brand (Diet Coke). Diet Coke is hosting the Ultimate 1989 Fan Party LIVE from iHeartRadio’s NYC studios during the broadcast. Additionally, Swift will make appearances on other iHeartMedia shows including: Elvis Duran, “The Kane Show” and the Johnjay & Rich show. She’ll also appear on the “iHeartRadio Countdown with Romeo” and be a featured guest on “iHeartRadio Countdown with Mario Lopez,” “Weekend Top 30 with Hollywood Hamilton,” “Saturday Night Online Live with Romeo,” and on “Club Kane.”
WQBU Transitions to Regional Mexican. After just seven months, WQBU “Univision America New York” jettisons Spanish Talk in favor of regional Mexican as “92.7 FM Nueva York.” Univision’s “El Show de Raul Brindis” airs 6:00 am – 8:00 am and it is followed – until 1:00 pm – by “El Bueno, La Mala y El Feo.” Univision Radio president Jose Valle explains, “Our mission is to give audiences what they want and we heard them loud and clear. We are now bringing the best regional Mexican music, along with our top two morning shows from across the country to our audience in New York.” WQBU was the first FM to air the Univision America format. “Nueva York” is expected to target adults 18 – 49. Spanish contemporary WXNY “X-96.3″ and Spanish talk WADO are the company’s other two New York City stations. Among persons 6+ in Nielsen Audio‘s August and September monthly reports for New York City, Garden City-licensed WQBU registered a .1; it has a .1 as well in September’s Long Island monthly.
RadioInfo Career Moves. Joining Digity Media as director of revenue development is Jeffrey A. Schatz, most recently president of Total Marketing Solutions. Prior to his work there, Schatz served as vice president of sales for Gapwest Broadcasting…..At CBS RADIO’s Charlotte CHR outlet WNKS “Kiss 95.1,” Kelly Meyers exits the midday host position after her contract there was not renewed…..Alpha Media’s triple A KINK, Portland parts company with Marconi Bologna who’d joined Sheila Hamilton on the morning show in July. PD Chris Mays writes on KINK’s Facebook page that the pairing didn’t “strike the right chord” for many listeners.
Michael Harrison Tapped to Write Liner Notes for New GUNHILL ROAD album, “Every 40 Years.” RadioInfo publisher Michael Harrison, whose relationship with legendary seventies band GUNHILL ROAD goes back to 1971 when he played their records as one of his favorites on WNEW-FM, New York, has penned an essay titled “Back When My Hair Was Long” to be specifically used as liner notes on the trio’s new album, “Every 40 Years.” The album, which will be officially released the first week in November, marks the group’s first recorded project in more than four decades! The name of the essay is a play on the title of the group’s classic hit single, “Back When My Hair Was Short,” which still gets airplay on classic hits stations. Harrison states, “I was delighted at the opportunity to write these liner notes for a number of reasons. First and foremost, I have always loved this band – they represent so much of the fabulous, timeless music we played ‘back in the day’ that has unfortunately fallen through the cracks of changing times, but more so because of changing media. Now, they have a really fantastic new collection of 19 tracks! I also welcome the opportunity to talk a bit about my days as a jock on that amazingly, historic station – something I don’t have that much of an opportunity to do still being active on the front lines of today’s radio and music scene. When I hosted mornings at WNEW-FM — the home of broadcasting icons Scott Muni, Alison Steele and Jonathan Schwartz — I was one of four extremely young DJs in our early 20s working there – who in addition to myself included Richard Neer, Dennis Elsas and the late, great Pete Fornatale – and we all played the heck out of GUNHILL ROAD as well as a bunch of acts that made it to our smokin’ hot turntables simply because we thought they were good and our listeners would like them.” Harrison writes, “By today’s standards, we were eclectic to an extreme. However, back then, in our quest to play really good ‘progressive’ music, it seemed normal and an obvious way to reach our target audience. ‘Rock’ was not sonically specific. It was more of an attitude than any one singular sound. We even included hip comedy tracks…and it all fit.” To read the entire essay, please click here. The photo here was taken in the WNEW-FM air studio in 1971 and shows (from left to right): DJs Dennis Elsas, Michael Harrison, Richard Neer, and Pete Fornatale. Photo courtesy of DennisElsas.com.
WQRS, Olean, New York Now Airing ‘The Core.’ Western New York rock outlet WQRS, Olean adds the Envision Networks-syndicated “The Core” to its weekend program schedule. Program director Chris Russell says, “As we take ‘98 Rocks’ to the next level programming-wise, it made perfect sense to add “The Core” to our lineup. No one in the market delivers the type of rock we do, and this show delivers the goods!” Envision describes “The Core” as “a weekly two-hour program featuring the music and artists that thrived in the 90s.” The program is hosted by Meltdown and programmed by Steve Black from Detroit’s rock powerhouse WRIF. Envision says the program is one of the first nationally syndicated shows to follow the PPM format and is programmed with extended music plays and only two commercial breaks an hour.
WCSX, Detroit and Bob Seger Help Replace Firefighters’ Equipment. After the Detroit Fire Department’s Ladder Company 22 had its saws stolen while responding to a blaze, WCSX, Detroit morning team Jim O’Brien and Trudi Daniels decided to help replace the $2,000 tools. The Greater Media classic rock station says O’Brien and Daniels were so upset by the news that they reached out to Detroit native and friend Bob Seger to see if he would sign a guitar that they could auction off. Seger had a different plan. He offered to buy the replacement saws for the department. The saws in question are used to breach roofs to vent buildings during a fire.
Duane Doobie’s Picks of the Week. RadioInfo’s hard-working music editor/director, Duane Doobie, backed by a growing team of information contributing researchers and golden-eared trench broadcasters, provides programmers with musical suggestions worthy of the attention of pro-active radio formats. You’ll be turned on to some of the exciting artists and music buzzing out there just over the horizon from the worlds of pop, rock, country and EDM. This week’s selection posted today (10/22) includes such names as: Lorde, Taylor Swift, Pixie Lott, Ella Henderson, Fergie, Kendrick Lamar, McBusted, Fall Out Boy, Echosmith, Yusuf Islam, Robert Plant, Foo Fighters, Young Rising Sons, Brothers Keeper, DEC3, Toby Keith, Doobie Brothers, Blake Shelton, Hunter Hayes, Little Big Town, Old Dominion, Brian Kelley, Lilly Wood & The Prick, Robin Schultz, Cherub, and Tokio Hotel among others. To check out this valuable information, please click here.
McEntire Introduced as Initial Big Machine – Cumulus Signing. It will be the first new music in over five years for 59-year-old Oklahoma native Reba McEntire, who shared the news yesterday (10/21) on Blair Garner‘s “America’s Morning Show.” With regard to her being the first artist to sign-on with Nash Icon Music – the joint label venture between Cumulus Media and Big Machine Label Group – she comments, “We have been in the studio having a blast recording new songs. I can’t wait for my fans to hear them.” She specifically thanked Big Machine president and chief executive officer Scott Borchetta, Cumulus executive vice president of content and programming John Dickey, and “everyone at Cumulus for letting me be a part of these new and exciting times.” Big Machine and Cumulus announced the creation of Nash Icon Music five months ago, and according to Dickey, “By the numbers, Reba defines what it is to be an ‘icon.’ She has sold 56 million albums, she has 35 #1 singles, is the #1 female country touring artist of all time, and she has a room full of CMA, ACM, and Grammy awards. Reba is Nashville. Nash Icon is thrilled to have Reba as our first artist on this exciting new label.” In addition to the Dickey-cited accolades, McEntire is one of only four entertainers to receive the National Artistic Achievement Award from the U.S. Congress. The business relationship between the singer and Borchetta goes back to 1991 and he is “again reminded of the power of all things Reba. Her presence, vocal prowess, song selection, and her passion are unequaled in her multi-decade career. We will again blaze new trails together. I cannot think of a more important artist or voice to crown as our first Icon artist, as there are none truer to the definition.” A McEntire song was played on “America’s Morning Show” every half hour in advance of the on-air announcement. Cumulus operates 16 Nash Icon stations and will soon distribute Nash Icon content through Westwood One, its wholly owned distribution service. Pictured here celebrating the announcement are (left to right): Nash Icon Music general manager Jim Weatherson, “America’s Morning Show” co-host Chuck Wicks, “America’s Morning Show” co-host Terri Clark, Reba McEntire, BMLG president and chief operating officer Scott Borchetta, Cumulus Media executive vice president of content and programming John Dickey, and “America’s Morning Show” host Blair Garner.
Taylor Swift to Use iHeartMedia for Album ‘Secret Session.’ The record industry will be watching the sales of Taylor Swift’s new album 1989 very carefully, hoping the newest offering from one of today’s hottest artists will change the tide of what’s been a down year for music sales. Big Machine and iHeartMedia will give it their best assist when Swift’s new record is featured on the digital platform iHeartRadio and across iHeartMedia’s FM CHR stations. “Taylor Swift’s 1989 Secret Session with iHeartRadio” takes place the day the album is released on Monday, October 27 at 7:30 pm.
Urban Artist Slated to Address Country Radio Seminar. Not exactly – the confab lands country mainstay Keith Urban to headline “Keith Urban: Being Present.” Country Radio Seminar executive director Bill Mayne declares to have “this incredible talent address the most critical skill in today’s hectic professional business environment will be a definitive ‘memorable moment.’ Urban is one of the first artists to have literally broken down the separation that can exist even on the concert stage. Not only has he been leaving the stage to join his audiences for years, he was the first artist I have ever seen whose stage literally bled into the crowd with no barrier of any kind. No doubt, that was entirely by design.” Urban’s spot as a featured speaker is scheduled for Friday, February 27 during CRS’ annual get together at the Nashville Convention Center.
WRAT, Monmouth/Ocean Adds Dave McDonald to Morning Show. New Jersey rock outlet WRAT, Point Pleasant “95.9 The Rat” announces the first station personality addition in 12 years as “East Side” Dave McDonald joins the “RAT Morning Show.” He’s working alongside Carl Craft and sidekick Gotts on the Greater Media-owned station. In the past, McDonald has worked with the Ron and Fez show on SiriusXM and has appeared on the satcaster’s Opie & Anthony show. Program director Carl Craft comments, “Dave has been a great addition to the show. He’s got the fun, upbeat vibe that the show craves without being fake or over the top. He’s totally fitting in with me and Gotts and so far the listeners have welcomed him to their favorite morning show. It’s funny how personally they’ve taken it, going so far as to ‘welcome him to The Rat’ at our first public appearance last Friday.”
SBS Radio Boosts Garcia to Revenue Chief. Former vice president of sales for Spanish Broadcasting System New York Spanish tropical WSKQ “Mega 97.9″ and Spanish contemporary WPAT “Amor 93.1″ Eric Garcia becomes revenue chief of SBS’ radio division and general manager of the company’s New York City cluster. Chief operating officer Albert Rodriguez states, “My appointment of Eric Garcia to a senior leadership role in SBS represents complete confidence that he will do an excellent job. Eric Garcia has demonstrated a capacity for leadership and management skills in improving New York’s station performance. We are asking him to extend those abilities to our other radio markets.” Garcia comments that he is “extremely excited” for this opportunity and that he “will be able to work alongside the best operators in the business across our SBS markets. Together, we will grow the dynamics of the overall SBS portfolio. As with any close family, I look forward to working together with each market and use our current relentless drive to grow SBS shares in every market.” Prior to joining SBS 10 years ago, the Queens, New York native and Long Island University alum worked at McGavren Guild Media.
Westwood One and vCreative Extend Partnership. The rep deal between Westwood One and vCreative continues as the two firms announce a multi-year extension. vCreative offers cloud-based terrestrial and digital software that allows continuity, traffic, and production departments to work easily together. Westwood One COO Charles Steinhauer says, “vCreative is a great partner for Cumulus and the radio industry at large as they continue to innovate and improve station work flow. Westwood One is proud to extend our partnership with vCreative president Jinny Laderer and her team as we continue to represent the best and brightest companies in the marketplace.”
The Conclave to Honor Ginny Morris with Rockwell Award. As the 39th Conclave Learning Conference on November 14-15 in Minneapolis approaches, The Conclave announces the 2014 Rockwell Award is being bestowed upon Hubbard Radio chair and CEO Ginny Morris. Conclave board of directors chairman Mark Bolke says, “The Rockwell Award recognizes those who have contributed to the rich legacy of the radio industry, communicating, inspiring and mentoring. Ginny has led Hubbard’s radio division from a two-station Minneapolis based group to one of the prominent and most respected radio companies in the country. We thank Ginny for her support of the Conclave over the years.”
Alterations at Alpha Media Richmond. In market #55, Alpha Media Richmond introduces Envision Networks’ Legends of Country “Hank” format on WLFV (93.1); moves contemporary country WWLB “The Wolf” from 93.1 to 98.9; and transitions oldies WBBT (107.3) to classic hits. Alpha Media executive vice president of programming Scott Mahalick states that, “In order to increase our competitive edge in Richmond, we needed to shake things up and turn up the heat. Not only will these improvements provide a more contemporary opportunity for revenue, they will give our listeners what they have been asking for.” Regarding the move of “The Wolf” to 98.9, market manager Paul Johnson comments, “This gives us full coverage in the Richmond metro, something we did not have on 93.1. In addition, the station will simulcast on 100.3 [WARV, licensed to Petersburg, Virginia], which covers the southern end of the market. This is a station that performs well where it is heard – it now has 100% penetration. [Along with WLFV's "Hank" on 93.1], we have a full country spectrum, and focused demo breakouts on each specific station; we think advertisers will welcome the choice. Even though [WBBT] was called ‘Big Oldies’, it really was a classic hits station already. We switched the position to ‘Richmond’s Greatest Hits,’ and evolved the music to a 1970s base.” Among persons 12+ in Nielsen Audio‘s summer 2014 book, WBBT registered a 2.6 (#12); WWLB 1.9 (#13); and WLFV 1.7 (#14). WBBT was down one-half share from spring 2014 and -.4 from a year ago (summer 2013); WWLB declined by six-tenths from spring and -.4 from a year ago; and WLFV was off by four-tenths compared to both spring 2014 and summer 2013.
Grande, Trainor Added to CMA Awards. Pop artists Ariana Grande and Meghan Trainor are now among those scheduled to perform at the 48th annual Country Music Awards. The twist will be that American Music Award “New Artist of the Year” Grande will be paired with CMA “Vocal Group of the Year” Little Big Town, while Trainor will do her smash “All About That Bass” with Miranda Lambert – who has a record-setting nine CMA nominations. Trainor actually has several country songwriting credits on her resume. For the seventh consecutive year, Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood will co-host the CMA event, which takes place in Nashville two weeks from tomorrow (Wednesday, 11/5). Others scheduled to perform are Jason Aldean, Dierks Bentley, Luke Bryan, Kenny Chesney, Eric Church, Florida Georgia Line, Lady Antebellum, Tim McGraw, Kacey Musgraves, Paisley, Blake Shelton, the Band Perry, Underwood and Keith Urban. Competing for “Entertainer of the Year” are Bryan, Lambert, Shelton, George Strait and Urban. ABC-TV will telecast the award show starting at 8:00 pm (ET).
RadioInfo Career Moves. After working in radio for 20 years with groups including Cox Media, CBS RADIO and most recently Hubbard Broadcasting, Doug Smith joins DMR/Interactive as vice president/marketing strategy…..Longtime Twin Falls, Idaho radio personality Kelly Klaas is retiring after a 45-year career that started on top 40 station KEEP (now KEZJ-AM). Klaas has been hosting a talk show on Townsquare Media’s news/talk KLIX since 2007…..Kansas City morning personality Mike Kennedy – currently hosting the wake-up show at Wilks Broadcasting-owned country outlet KBEQ “Q104” – is named to the Kansas Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame in a ceremony in Wichita on October 19.
Paul Shaffer Feature Added to KBKG, Jonesboro Programming. The daily feature starring Paul Shaffer and syndicated by Envision Networks is now heard on Shields-Adkins Broadcasting’s KBKG, Jonesboro, Arkansas. “Paul Shaffer’s 60-Second Rewind” is a vignette that features Shaffer’s stories about the hit-makers of the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s as well as pop culture updates and topical facts about songs, movies and TV shows from the era. KBKG program director Amanda Miller says, “We are very excited to have ‘Paul Shaffer’s 60-Second Rewind’ as a part of our morning show on ‘More Music 93.5 FM.’ Our listeners love trivia and entertainment news, especially pertaining to music and movies, and Paul is a perfect fit!”
CBS RADIO Las Vegas Stations Announce Holiday Concert Lineups. Two of the CBS RADIO O&Os in Las Vegas are hosting holiday concerts – hot AC KMXB “Mix 94.1” presents the annual “Mark and Mercedes’ Not So Silent Night” and alternative KXTE “X107.5” is presenting the two-night “Holiday Havoc.” The December 5 “Mark and Mercedes’ Not So Silent Night” features Train with special guests Better Than Ezra, Matt Nathanson and Andy Grammer. A portion of the proceeds will benefit Candlelighters Childhood Cancer Foundation of Nevada. The “X107.5” annual “Holiday Havoc” on December 11 will feature Imagine Dragons, Young the Giant and Brumby. Night two on Friday December 12 features Bush, The Airborne Toxic Event, Priory and Meg Myers. A portion of the proceeds will go to Las Vegas’ St. Jude’s Ranch for Children.
‘98.7 The Bull’ in Portland Snags Josh Turner for ‘Santa Jam.’ Country superstar Josh Turner is headlining the “Santa Jam Concert” presented by Alpha Media country outlet KUPL, Portland “98.7 The BULL.” The show is December 7 and will also feature Stoney Creek recording artist Parmalee and Jackson Michelson. Alpha Media EVP of programming Scott Mahalick says, “We couldn’t be more excited to have phenomenal country artists such as Josh Turner and Parmalee for the 2014 ‘Santa Jam.’ This energetic lineup is guaranteed to rock the Moda Center into the NEXT Holiday Season.”
Ne-Yo Visits Hollywood Hernandez. Motown recording artist Ne-Yo is pictured here in the Dallas studios of Westwood One’s adult urban format “The Touch” where he chatted on the air with host Hollywood Hernandez. The two talked about his performance at the Dallas House of Blues and his soon-to-be-released sixth studio album Non-Fiction.
“Music Industry Reunion New York” a Smash! After two successful Music Industry Reunions in Los Angeles over the past couple of years, organizer (and music industry promotional icon) Jon Scott responded to numerous requests and “took the party to New York.” The result was an extraordinary, emotion-packed event that drew more than 200 prominent music industry and radio friends to Manhattan’s Hill Country Barbecue this past Wednesday evening (10/15). Some of the folks that attended are retired giants of the business, some seasoned legends still vigorously playing an active role in the industry, and a number of young up-and-comers that showed up to share the good cheer as well as the priceless knowledge and wisdom packed into the room. In the words of Scott, “It was a non-stop hug-fest!” (Pictured here at right are music business legends Johnny Barbis, and Ron Alexenburg, right.) Throughout the weepy, huggy, kissy, happy, and yappy evening, a number of participants took to the stage to say a few words of tribute to and about each other and express the powerful sentiments that permeated the festivities. One of the speeches that resonated with the crowd big-time was delivered by Paul “Rap” Rappaport — former Columbia Records exec and current co-owner (with Judy Libow) of classic rock promotion and marketing firm, Classics Du Jour. (See story below for more details and full text of the speech.) Jon Scott sums it up as follows, telling RadioInfo, “We all gathered together to share the friendships and stories that developed during the incredible period of music that helped shape contemporary cultural history as we know it. The Music Industry Reunion committee that organized this with me is to be commended: Judy Libow, Roxy Myzal, Harvey Leeds, Steve Leeds, Jimmy Del Balzo, Jessie Scott, Wayne McManners, Peter Gidion, Greg Lee, and Ted Utz.” Scott says because of the success and numerous requests, another party is already on the drawing boards for 2015. Jon Scott can be emailed at email@example.com. (Pictured above, from left to right, are: Jon Scott, music business impresario George Cappelini, USRN exec Roxy Myzal and former WBCN, Boston GM Tony Berardini.)
Paul Rappaport Delivers Knock Out Speech at “Music Industry Reunion New York.” As indicated in the story above, a number of people made compelling speeches at last Wednesday evening’s (10/15) reunion of music and radio industry professionals in New York City (see story above) – one of the highlights being the impassioned words delivered by the ever-popular Paul Rappaport, former Columbia Records VP and current co-owner of promotion/marketing firm Classics du Jour. “Rap” tells RadioInfo, “I just wanted us all to remember a time when art and creativity mattered first, and the money mattered second. And not to forget a time when something like a magical segue could just stop everyone in their tracks in pure appreciation of the art of radio, and how it filled us with so much joy and shared understanding, all feeling as one.” To read the entire text of Rappaport’s address, please click here. Rappaport is pictured here at left with Jimmy Del Balzo (center) and Jerry Lembo (right).
iHeartMedia Ups Mark Adams to PD at KIOI, KYLD in San Francisco. This move brings Mark Adams south from his VP of programming post at iHeartMedia’s Portland station group to San Francisco to serve as program director for hot AC KIOI “Star 101.3” and CHR KYLD “WiLD 94.9.” Adams is taking over for Cat Collins who’s been elevated to the corporate National Programming Platforms and Strategic Services division. iHeartMedia San Francisco VP of programming Don Parker says, “I’m thrilled to have Mark return to the Bay area and lead these two legendary stations. His track record speaks for itself and his prior experience programming in San Francisco make him the ideal candidate to take the reins of ‘Star’ and ‘WiLD.’”
Entercom Names Lamadrid to VP Post. This is a newly created position at Entercom Communications and Carlos Lamadrid comes to the vice president of national sales and strategic partnerships post from his most recent position with TC Media where he was senior vice president. Entercom station group president Weezie Kramer says, “We are thrilled to have someone of Carlos’ experience join our team. His sales, business, and marketing acumen are market tested and will help us elevate the conversation with our customers.” Entercom says Lamadrid’s focus will be on “increasing revenue in the company’s national sales channel as well as developing integrated partnerships with leading national advertisers.”
Claudine Cazian Promoted to VP of Programming and Branded Entertainment for Premiere Networks. This moves up the person in charge of production for Premiere Networks programming including “On Air with Ryan Seacrest,” “American Top 40” and “Direct from Hollywood” to vice president of programming and branded entertainment for all Premiere products. Premiere EVP of programming Jennifer Leimgruber says Cazian will “work closely to develop and oversee entertainment programming and content, while identifying and developing opportunities to strengthen our brands, and support our partners.”
More RadioInfo Career Moves. At Radio One’s Cleveland hip hop signal WENZ “Z107.9,” Peter Parker is the new afternoon drive personality. Parker comes to Radio One from his most recent gig at CBS RADIO’s hip hop WPGC, Washington…..“Rolls” Royce Stevenson is promoted to APD at Entercom’s hip hop KDGS, Wichita “Power 93.5.” Stevenson is also afternoon drive personality and music director…..It’s a return to radio after a six –year absence for Julie Haskell Gade who is named general manager for Digity Media’s Lincoln, Nebraska cluster. The Lincoln Journal Star reports that Gade takes over for Joy Patten who stays with the company to serve as sales manager. Gade worked for the stations when they were owned by Three Eagles Communications.
SF Stations Implement Royal Playlist Adjustments. On the eve of MLB‘s 2014 “Fall Classic,” which will feature the San Francisco Giants against the Kansas City Royals, 17-year-old New Zealand-born singer Lorde finds herself in the middle of a bit of a baseball-related brouhaha. Lorde, of course, has the hit single “Royals,” a title one might imagine would not go over very well this week in the Bay Area. In fact, at least two San Francisco outlets – Entercom adult contemporary KOIT-FM “Better Music for a Better Workday” and Cumulus Media adult alternative KFOG – have decided to delete the song from their playlists for at least the duration of the series. KFOG’s tweeted statement indicates the station will be a “‘Royals’- free zone,” while KOIT-FM indicates the song “will be removed” until the series concludes. In an interview with NBC Bay Area, KFOG program director Jim Richards rhetorically asks, “Why send any positive vibes to Kansas City – why not give the song a rest? No one is going to get hurt over it.” Earlier this year, Lorde received an autographed jersey from Royals Hall of Famer George Brett and she maintains it is “one of the coolest things” she owns. The series gets underway tomorrow (Tuesday, 10/21) in Kansas City and we can’t help but wonder if Kansas City stations might retaliate by temporarily tinkering in a similar fashion with the music of a well-known Giants fan – Steve Perry.
Radio Express to Distribute Akon Show Globally. The weekly radio program “Stadium Live Radio,” produced by hip hop artist and producer Akon, is going to be distributed outside the U.S. by Burbank, California-based Radio Express. The company says, “‘Stadium Live’ connects radio audiences to the world of hit music through the personality and the voice of Akon. The show features the biggest charting and downloaded songs from the four corners of the world and exclusive remixes straight from the studio to the listener.”
Westwood One Producer Jaan McCoy Dies. Lifelong radio pro Jaan McCoy died at his studio in Dallas over the weekend. McCoy was a producer for Westwood One’s 24-hour Classic Hits format. McCoy started in radio at age 16 on WFBL, Syracuse. His radio adventure has taken him to gigs in the Hamilton/Toronto and Ottawa markets in Canada, then to Dallas for FM classic rock, rock hits on the ABC Radio Network, and 20 y ears as morning host of “The Breakfast Club,” with 10 of those years at WLGZ’s sister station KAAM. Most recently he was one of the principals in the ownership of country and classic hits stations in Greenville, Texas. He is survived by his wife and six children. David Felker, Westwood One’s classic hits program director, says, “Jaan loved radio and anything to do with music and programming. We’d talk for hours about it. He was dedicated, hard-working, always willing to be there to help out, and he always did it with a smile. Jaan was a true professional, an inspiration and a friend to us all. He’ll be missed.”
Alpha Flips Dayton Hot AC to Country. The Dayton market has a number of country stations – including a couple of signals that reach the market from nearby Cincinnati. But Alpha Media says none are playing the classic artists from the 80s, 90s and 2000s. So the company flips hot AC WCLI “Click 101.5” to “101.5 Hank FM” and it will include such artists as Garth Brooks, Brooks & Dunn, Alan Jackson, Reba McEntire, Shania Twain and George Strait. Alpha Media EVP of programming Scott Mahalick says, “The wise decision to add ‘Hank FM’ in Dayton becomes part of the foundation to help increase our value as a cluster in the market. The ‘Icons of Country’ format connects us to a passionate and underserved audience that continues to grow.” Program director Brad Waldo adds, “‘101.5 Hank FM’ is being launched because we miss the ‘golden era’ of country music and we know that a lot of people in Dayton do, too. There are some great stations in the area, just none that are playing what we play.”
Rock Makes Way for CHR on WDQX, Peoria. An Alpha Media rocker bites the dust as the company flips WDQX, Peoria “102.3 Max FM” to CHR as “Energy 102.3.” Peoria market vice president of programming Phil Becker says, “Over the last few months Alpha Media has shown our commitment to locally programmed top 40 stations. That focus is once again proven as we add WDQX to our top 40 roster. A new ‘Energy’ has come to Peoria and it’s fully charged!”
Jordan Tapped to Succeed Coyote as WAMZ PD. It is going to take (a) Michael Jordan to replace Coyote Calhoun. In this case, that would be iHeartMedia Lexington, Kentucky operations manager Michael Jordan, who is being given additional duties to program Louisville country sibling WAMZ. After 35 years with WAMZ, Calhoun will be departing the station at the end of this year. Regional programming manager Kelly Carls points out that, “Michael was born and raised in Kentucky. He has distinguished himself with outstanding success in Lexington with signature community events like the annual Fourth of July ‘Red, White and Boom’ festival. We are thrilled to see him bring that expertise to WAMZ.” Jordan states, “Coyote Calhoun built WAMZ into a legendary brand. We want to continue his legacy of great country music, concerts, and a tireless dedication to the community. I would like to thank Kelly Carls and iHeartMedia’s senior leadership for this amazing opportunity.” In addition to his new Louisville assignment, Jordan will continue as iHeartMedia Lexington’s OM and as program director of country WBUL “The Bull” there.
iHeartMedia Chicago Names Hudson LSM. At the Chicago cluster of iHeartMedia, Anne Hudson is appointed local sales manager for urban contemporary WGCI-FM, gospel WGRB “Inspiration 1390″ and urban AC WVAZ “V-103.” iHeartMedia Chicago vice president of sales Jason Courtemanche opines, “Anne Hudson will be an excellent addition to our local sales team. Anne’s strong sales background and passion for driving revenue made her a natural choice for our organization.” Hudson comments she is “looking forward to creating meaningful relationships with business and civic leaders in Chicago. Together with my new team, I am confident we will develop exciting new campaigns designed to achieve brand goals.” Her background includes management positions at Emmis Los Angeles rhythmic CHR KPWR “Power 106″ and iHeartMedia San Francisco urban contemporary KMEL.
Journal Broadcast Group Celebrates 50 Years of Country at KFDI, Wichita. Fifty years is a long time for a station to program the same format and that’s part of what Journal Broadcast Group is celebrating as it recognizes the 50th anniversary of country outlet KFDI, Wichita. The station is presenting “KFDI – Fifty Years and Counting,” a radio retrospective special that will air in two parts: the first hour at 7:00 pm on Sunday, October 19, and the second hour at 7:00 pm on Sunday, October 26. The program will feature archive audio and conversations with former KFDI on-air personalities from the past five decades, from “Ol’ Mike” Oatman to Cornbread to current personalities. Journal calls it a “neighborly look back at KFDI’s birth, how the station continues to serve Wichita today, and where KFDI is headed.” Journal Wichita OM Justin Case comments, “In a business known for frequent change, it is rare to have a station – any station – that has kept the same format for 50 years. This is a tribute to the support of the Wichita community.”
Classic Country Shifts to AM on JBG Wichita Signal. With the pending sale of KFTI, Wichita from Journal Broadcast Group to non-profit Envision Broadcast Group, JBG is adding the classic country format currently heard on KFTI to co-owned (and currently sports talk) KLIO at 1070 on the AM band, effective October 22. The format will simulcast on both KFTI and KLIO until Envision closes on the former. JBG Wichita VP/GM Beverlee Brannigan comments, “I am excited to return classic country to the legendary AM 1070 frequency in Wichita. That’s where KFDI was born. As we get ready to celebrate KFDI’s 50th birthday, it feels right to bring authentic country music and the KFTI call letters back to the AM band.”
Cumulus Announces ‘Winter Nash Bash’ in Nashville. It’s being called the inaugural “Winter Nash Bash” and is being held at the historic Ryman Auditorium on December 1. Cumulus Media’s Nashville country stations – WKDF “NASH FM 103.3” and WSM “95.5 NASH ICON” – are promoting the concert that will feature artists including: Clint Black, Parmalee and special guests to be announced. The event will be hosted by “America’s Morning Show” personalities Blair Garner, Terri Clark and Chuck Wicks. Fans attending are encouraged to bring an unwrapped toy or gift for a child or senior in need. All gifts will be donated to the Salvation Army’s Forgotten Angels program.
Scott Shannon’s True Oldies Finds Home on iHeartRadio. After a long relationship with Cumulus Media that ended last year, Scott Shannon finds a new digital platform for his True Oldies Channel on iHeartRadio. Shannon is now hosting mornings on CBS RADIO’s classic hits WCBS-FM, New York. The True Oldies Channel format had been syndicated by Westwood One since 2004 but that arrangement also ended after Shannon and Cumulus split. The channel is available on iHeartRadio effective today (10/17).
Pitbull Joins Lineup at the iHeartRadio Fiesta Latina. In addition to Pitbull, J. Balvin and Becky G are joining the lineup of performers for the first-ever iHeartRadio Fiesta Latina Presented by Sprint set for November 22 at The Forum in Los Angeles. As you can see iHeartMedia has Sprint on board as the name sponsor for this inaugural show. Other artists already signed on for the concert include: Ricky Martin, Roberto Tapia, Alejandra Guzmán, Prince Royce, La Original Banda El Limón with a special guest appearance by Voz A Voz, Daddy Yankee, Jesse & Joy and others.
Bob & Tom Debut Customized Football Songs. The first affiliate to get a Bob & Tom customized football song is Cumulus-owned classic rock WOFX, Cincinnati “Fox 92.5.” The Westwood One-syndicated morning show duo is creating the songs for affiliates in markets with college or pro football teams. The song for WOFX promotes the Bob & Tom show while getting listeners pumped for the next Bengals matchup. Sample the Cincinnati Bengals song, “Who Dey,”
Wallace Inducted into the Arizona Broadcasters Association Hall Of Fame. The ceremony for the “Class of 2014″ – which included Todd Wallace – was held yesterday (10/16). Wallace comments that he is “very proud of this A.B.A. honor. It is especially rewarding since I will be alongside so many of my good friends and colleagues who are past inductees.” In that category, Wallace specifically cites Chuck Blore, Gary Edens, W. Steven Martin, Al McCoy, Pat McMahon, Bill Phalen, Dave Pratt, Bobby Rich, Charlie Van Dyke, Mary Jo West, and Preston Westmoreland. Internationally recognized as the founding father of callout passive music research, the now semi-retired Wallace has been Phoenix-based since 1970 and he is the former program director of six different #1 Phoenix stations (KRUX, KRIZ, KUPD, KFYI, KTAR, and KOOL-FM). In addition, Wallace consulted the launch of Tucson’s KRQQ. Other stations he has consulted over the years include WPIX, New York; KIIS, Los Angeles; Dallas’ KKDA-FM, KHKS, KRNB, and KLIF; WKYS, Washington, DC; WSNI, Philadelphia; and WXKS-FM, Boston. Over 200 radio stations have used his MARS system. Last year, Wallace celebrated his 50th anniversary in radio.