General Music Radio Industry News
Round One of September PPM Data Released. The first of four rounds of September 2014 PPM data from Nielsen Audio has been released for 12 markets including: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Dallas, Houston, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Nassau-Suffolk (Long Island), Riverside, San Jose, and Middlesex-Somerset-Union (New Jersey). The survey period was August 14 through September 10. You can see the numbers from subscribing stations here. Meanwhile, RadioInfo managing editor Mike Kinosian presents his “Ten Takeaways” from this batch of ratings below.
- New York – Make that three straight months that classic hits-oldies WCBS-FM (6.9 – 6.8, -.1) occupies the top spot (6+), and in each case, iHeartMedia adult contemporary WLTW “Lite FM” (6.1 – 5.7, -.4) finishes as runner-up. This represents the seventh consecutive monthly in which WCBS-FM has been in the six-share range (6.1 – 6.6 – 6.6 – 6.3 – 6.4 – 6.9 – 6.8). Conversely, 5.7 for “Lite-FM” matches its lowest 6+-stat in approximately three years (5.7 in October 2011). Rather than having its sights set on regaining its customary penthouse position, “Lite-FM” must now concentrate on not slipping to third. While trailing WCBS-FM by 1.1 shares, WLTW is only four-tenths ahead of Emmis urban AC WBLS, which drops two-tenths to 5.3. Other stations – in addition to “Lite-FM” – declining by four-tenths (6+) are co-owned rhythmic CHR WKTU (3.9 – 3.5, #7 to #8) and CBS Radio hot AC WWFS “Fresh” (3.2 – 2.8, #12 to #16). Regarding WKTU, this is the fifth successive time it is down or flat (4.6 – 4.4 – 4.0 – 3.9 – 3.9 – 3.5, 6+). Spanish Broadcasting System‘s WPAT-FM “Amor 93.1″ regains one-half of July – August’s -.8 (2.6 – 1.8) with a +.4 to 2.2 (#19 to #17).
- Los Angeles – With the exception of “All-Christmas Music”-related ratings sweeps, month-to-month gains of at least one-full share (6+) are a rarity in Los Angeles. Nonetheless, Entravision-ownedSpanish adult hits KLYY “Jose 97.5″ registers a +1.0 (1.4 – 2.4) as it zooms from #25 to #18. This comes one month after “Jose” suffered a -1.2 from 2.6. iHeartMedia CHR and hot AC siblings KIIS “Kiss-FM” (5.0 – 5.2, +.2) and KBIG “My-FM” (5.3 – 5.0) exchange places at #1 and #2, respectively. Hot AC “My-FM” had notched three straight progressive trends (4.8 – 4.9 – 5.0 – 5.3, 6+) prior to September’s -.3. “Kiss-FM” format rival – CBS Radio‘s KAMP “Amp Radio” – falters by two-tenths to 4.0 and places seventh; CHR “Amp” had been sixth the past three sweeps. Its classic hits-oldies cluster-mate KRTH “K-Earth 101″ has an erosion of four-tenths (4.9 – 4.5) as it falls from third to fourth. By advancing one-half share (3.8 – 4.3), Univision Spanish contemporary KLVE “K-Love 107.5″ inches up from seventh to fifth. Other than a 4.1 this past May, “K-Love” has been exclusively in the four-share range ever since it posted a 4.1 more than three years ago (August 2011). Emmis rhythmic CHR KPWR “Power 106″ adds four-tenths (4.3 – 4.7), progressing from fifth to third. For the fourth successive time, iHeartMedia talker KFI (steady at #8) is up or flat (2.7 – 2.8 – 2.9 – 3.3 – 3.3). With a -.3 to 3.0, Bonneville classic rocker KSWD “The Sound” has its streak of up-trends broken at six (2.0 – 2.2 – 2.5 – 2.6 – 2.9 – 3.2 – 3.3 – 3.0, 6+); “The Sound” slides from eighth to ninth.
- Chicago – Flat at 5.9, iHeartMedia urban AC WVAZ “V-103″ sets the pace in the “Windy City” for the seventh straight month. Univision regional Mexican WOJO “La Que Buena” improves by seven-tenths (3.6 – 4.3) and rockets from tenth to fifth. The last time “La Que Buena” hit the four-share threshold was in December 2012 (4.0). iHeartMedia’s similarly-programmed WNUA “El Patron 95.5″ (#20 to #22) is off by one-half share; this is the station’s third consecutive (6+) downward trend (2.2 – 2.1 – 2.0 – 1.5). After a cumulative +1.2 (3.4 – 4.4 – 4.6, June – July – August), Cumulus Media‘s WLS-FM “Chicago’s Classic Hits” (fifth to sixth) regresses by six-tenths to 4.0.
- Houston – With its sixth consecutive up or flat monthly (5.7 – 5.8 – 6.2 – 6.2 – 6.3 – 6.4 – 6.7), Radio One urban AC KMJQ “Majic 102.1″ catches iHeartMedia adult contemporary KODA “Sunny 99.1″ (6.8 – 6.7, -.1) at #1. It is the strongest 6+-showing for “Majic” in over a year (6.9 in June 2013). “Sunny” held sole possession of first-place in July and August. After four monthlies in the three-share range (3.3 – 3.1 – 3.2 – 3.1, May through August), KTRH explodes with a +1.3 to 4.4 (6+). In so doing, the iHeartMedia talker catapults from #16 to #9. Simultaneously, the 6+-share of the University of Houston‘s KUHF (#17 to #19) declines by more than one-third (3.0 – 1.9). The -1.1 reflects the largest (6+) month-month drop-off by any station in the 12 Nielsen Audio PPM markets whose data was released on Monday. Tied for second in that dubious category is Cox Media Group classic hits-oldies outlet KGLK “The Eagle,” off by one full-share to 5.2 (third to fifth). Starting in April, “The Eagle” had put together four successive up or flat monthlies (5.4 – 5.7 – 5.7 – 6.1 – 6.2, 6+). Leaping by seven-tenths each are iHeartMedia urban contemporary KQBT “The Beat” (3.7 – 4.4, #11 to #9, tied with KTRH) and CBS Radio-owned country KILT-FM “The Bull” (3.3 – 4.0), which advances from #15 to #11. While steady in seventh-place, iHeartMedia’s KTBZ “The Buzz – Houston’s New Rock Alternative” falters by six-tenths (5.2 – 4.6).
- Philadelphia – Just as it has been a safe assumption that either – if not both – the Red Sox and Yankees would be in post-season play, we have become accustomed to seeing either – if not both – New York adult contemporary WLTW and Philadelphia adult contemporary WBEB first each month in their respective markets. Well, the 2014 season is history for the Red Sox and Yankees with no post-season for either. Likewise, WLTW is second this month in New York (noted above) and Jerry Lee-owned WBEB “More FM” drops out of first-place in Philadelphia. “More FM” finished first in 17 of the last 18 surveys, including the past six. Even though “More FM” gains one-tenth to 6.6, WDAS-FM “Philly’s Best R&B and Old School” overtakes it. After the iHeartMedia urban AC’s back-to-back 5.5 shares in July and August (6+), WDAS-FM rings up an impressive +1.2 to 6.7 and leapfrogs from a third-place tie to first. The last time “Philly’s Best R&B and Old School” reached the six-share level was March 2013 (6.3). Public WHYY (+.7) is up or flat (6+) for the fifth straight time (2.6 – 2.6 – 2.7 – 2.9 – 3.0 – 3.7) and vaults from #16 to #11. Improving by four-tenths are Greater Media-owned WMGK “Philadelphia’s Classic Rock” (5.5, sixth to fifth) and CBS Radio sports outlet WIP-FM (3.7, #14 to #11).
- Atlanta – Four of the market’s top sixfinishers are owned by Cox Media Group, including talker WSB-AM, which ends its mini (6+) slide (7.4 – 7.0 – 6.6 – 6.4) with a +.8 to 7.2, enabling it to jump from a third-place tie to first. Similarly, Radio One-owned WAMJ “Atlanta’s Best Mix of R&B” applies the breaks on its downward trend of the same duration (6.0 – 5.2 – 4.4 – 4.3) by dialing up a +.9 to 5.2 (ninth to eighth). Seven-tenths proves to be lucky for CBS Radio urban contemporary WVEE “V-103″ (6.3 – 7.0, +.7, fifth to second), but unlucky for Cox Media Group urban AC WALR “Kiss 104″ (6.8 – 6.1, -.7, first to fourth) and Cumulus Media’s WWWQ-HD2 (.9 – .2, -.7, #21 to #29). It was only a one-month (August) stay at #1 for “Kiss 104″; the last time it reached #1 was the “Holiday” 2013 report.
- Long Island – Not only does WKJY “K-98.3″ halt its negative trending at three straight months (3.8 – 3.6 – 3.4 – 2.9), it boasts the most significant (6+) month-to-month improvement by any station in the 12 PPM markets released on Monday. The whopping +1.5 by “K-98.3″ (2.9 – 4.4) rockets the Connoisseur Media adult contemporary facility from twelfth all the way to fifth. This is the strongest 6+-share for the station since “Holiday” 2013′s 4.7. Rebounding from a July – August -.8, Cox Media Group CHR WBLI regains six-tenths of it (5.1 – 5.7) and remains in the runner-up slot. This time last month, Connoisseur Media adult contemporary-turned-hot AC WALK-FM “Real Variety from the 1990s, 2K, and Today” enjoyed a robust +1.1 (6+) to 7.0. Unchanged at 7.0, WALK-FM repeats at #1; in August, it curtailed WBLI’s four-month first-place run.
- Riverside – Owing to a massive +1.3 (3.2 – 4.5), Univision Spanish contemporary KLVE “K-Love 107.5″ jumps from sixth to fourth. Entravision Spanish adult hits KLYY “Jose 97.5″ scores a +1.0 in the Los Angeles monthly, but Riverside’s perennial (6+) frontrunner does not fare nearly as well in its home market. Despite a -.8 (9.5 – 8.7) though, “Jose” remains #1 in Riverside; 8.7 is the lowest for “Jose” (6+) since April’s 8.3. CBS Radio-owned country outlet KFRG “K-Frog” drops one-half share (3.9 – 3.4) to slide from fifth to sixth.
- San Jose – Back in June, Univision‘s KBRG slumped by six-tenths to 5.5, as the station fell from first to second. “Mas Variedad” then had almost twice as much erosion (-1.1) to 4.4, further dropping the Spanish adult hits outlet to seventh. Some of that was recouped in August, owing to a one-half share gain to 4.9 (fourth). Now – with a robust +1.2 to 6.1 – “Mas Variedad” catches public KQED (6.5 – 6.1, -.4) at #1. Even though KQED shares the lead, this is its fourth successive month at #1. There is good news as well for KBRG’s rhythmic CHR cluster-mate KVVF “Hot 105.7,” which improves by seven-tenths (2.4 – 3.1) and climbs from #16 to #11. Spanish Broadcasting System regional Mexican KRZZ “La Razza” declined in August by nine-tenths to 1.6, but regains one-half share to 2.1 (#25 to #20).
- Middlesex – Punching up a +.8 to 5.8 in August (fourth to second), classic hits-oldies WCBS-FM does even better in September with a +.9 and progresses to #1 (6.7). This is the first time since April, when it scored a 6.5, that WCBS-FM has occupied the top spot in this New Jersey market. Displaced from the penthouse is iHeartMedia classic rocker WAXQ “Q104-3,” which segues to second. Ironically, “Q-104.3″ actually has its fifth successive positive trend (4.5 – 4.7 – 5.4 – 5.9 – 6.2 – 6.4), resulting in a cumulative +1.9. Advancing by six-tenths each are Townsquare Media talker WKXW (5.4 – 6.0, remaining third) and iHeartMedia rhythmic CHR WKTU (2.4 – 3.0, #17 to #13). This constitutes the fourth successive (6+) up trend – and a cumulative +1.4 – for WKXW (4.6 – 4.8 – 4.9 – 5.4 – 6.0). It is a tough month here for hot AC. For openers, Cumulus Media hot AC WPLJ falters by one full-share (3.6 – 2.6) as it tumbles from #12 to #16. Falling by seven-tenths each are CBS Radio hot AC WWFS “Fresh 102.7″ (4.0 – 3.3, ninth to twelfth) and SBS-owned Spanish contemporary WPAT-FM (2.2 – 1.5, #18 to #22). In August, “Fresh” had rung up a +.9.
Adult Contemporary WMIM, Monroe-Toledo to Flip to Country as ‘98.3 Nash Icon.’ Saying that the company “spent a great deal of time analyzing what is the best format” for the market, Cumulus RVP Andy Stuart announces adult contemporary WMIM takes on the company’s classic country format and positions itself “98.3 Nash Icon” beginning this Friday at 5:00 pm ET. In making the announcement, the company says the current local air staff will remain in place, including Chris King in morning drive and Mark Benson in evenings.” King, who also programs the station, says, “‘Nash Icon’ is an exciting new format and the perfect fit for Monroe and Monroe County. This station will proudly serve Monroe, Monroe County and Southeastern Michigan with the music that listeners love and our continued commitment to the community. I am very happy to be a part of this new chapter in Monroe radio.”
Pinch Postpones Retirement. Apparently, you can hold off buying a gold watch for Jon Pinch a bit longer. Cumulus‘ 14-year executive vice president and chief operating officer was scheduled to call it quits in late-November, but the company is installing him as market manager for its six-station Atlanta cluster. Cumulus president and chief executive officer Lew Dickey comments, “Jon is the consummate team player and will now be contributing in this new role. We are excited to have someone with his loyalty, talent, and experience leading our terrific team in Atlanta.” Pinch remarks that he is “honored” to lead “these great stations at this important juncture in the company’s growth. This makes perfect sense for the stations and for me – personally and professionally – so retirement will have to wait. To say that the position amounts to downshifting for me sounds almost comical. The lifestyle change, with far less travel, allows me to spend my time at home in Atlanta and continue to work in the industry I love. It is the best of both worlds. I am thrilled to work with the incredible team in place at our Atlanta stations to drive the continued growth of these vibrant radio brands.” The position has been open since April when Cumulus promoted Jeff Brown to corporate senior vice president. Cumulus’ Atlanta cluster consists of country WKHX “Kicks 101.5,” WNNX “Rock 100.5,” CHR WWWQ “Q-100,” country WWWQ-HD2 “Nash Icon 98.9″; news WYAY “News Radio 106.7,” and WWWQ-HD3.
Corporate Changes at iHeartMedia. This is a promotion for two Chicago-based iHeartMedia execs as Earl Jones is named senior vice president of urban operations for the company, effective immediately. Jones, who had been market president of iHeartMedia Chicago, remains based in Chicago for this corporate post and will report to the company’s president of national sales Jeff Howard. Jones is charged with developing and implementing urban sales and programming initiatives and strategies to generate revenue for the Chicago, New York, Dallas, Miami, Atlanta, Los Angeles, Jacksonville and Orlando markets, as well as iHeartMedia urban stations throughout the country. Taking over the Chicago market president post is Matt Scarano, who comes back to Chicago after serving as market president for the company’s Atlanta station group. Scarano joined iHeartMedia in 2009 as the director of sales for the Chicago cluster.
Warfield Named PD at WSM-AM, Nashville. The Grand Ole Opry-owned classic country outlet WSM-AM, Nashville announces Nashville market pro Dean Warfield is its new PD. Warfield, who served with crosstown WSIX-FM in the past, most recently was serving as manager of digital content for South Central Communications. He comments, “I’ve had the good fortune to be a part of Nashville country radio for 20 years. The opportunity to work with a Hall-of-Fame air staff at the legendary 650 AM WSM is a true blessing.”
More RadioInfo Career Moves. Joining the Hudson Valley operations of iHeartMedia is Sammy Suarez who is serving as PD of classic rock WBWZ, New Paltz “Rock 93-3” and PD and afternoon host at CHR WPKF, Poughkeepsie “96-1 Kiss FM.” He was most recently with Apex Broadcasting’s AC WMXZ, Charleston, South Carolina…..After exiting Saga Communications’ CHR WNRG, Milwaukee “Energy 106.9” in August, Ashley Z lands the evening gig at Entercom’s CHR KDND, Sacramento “107.9 The End.”…..Chris Alan is named program director at Powell Broadcasting’s CHR WPFM, Panama City, Florida “Hot 107.9.” He held the PD post at Magic Broadcasting’s crosstown CHR WILN prior to this new gig…..The syndicated “Ace & T.J.” show names Tracey Millman director of operations for the program.
To Reach Millennials, Get Real. In a column posted today (9/29), media consultant Holland Cooke reports from the recent Maine Association of Broadcasters conference where a major topic of conversation was reaching the Millennial generation. Cooke writes that the news for radio operators today with regard to this generation is a good news/bad news scenario: The good is that Millennials like the idea of an audio-only medium but the bad news is they don’t want it to sound like it did for generations past – they have very different media sensibilities. “Keeping it real” is the mantra for this generation as comments from the “How Millennials Use Media” panel indicate. Cooke reports college-age panelists said things like, “People our age find radio gimmicky,” and, “Authenticity is a huge factor.” Read Cooke’s entire column here.
Kansas City Woman’s Court Victory at Entercom’s Expense Serves Up Lessons for Broadcasters. Friday’s court victory for a Kansas City law student who was incorrectly identified as a “local porn star” by the “Afentra’s Big Fat Morning Buzz” show on Entercom’s alternative KRBZ “96.5 The Buzz” provides more lessons for broadcasters in how to avoid falling victim to a (in this case) $1 million dollar penalty for something that could have been avoided. As you are probably aware by now, Ashley Patton was misidentified by the morning show as a “local porn star” after confusing her name with that of a text-message suggestion by a listener who wrote to the show that Ashley Payton put pornographic images of herself online. On Friday, the jury awarded $250,000 in actual damages and the two sides agreed to punitive damages of $750,000, which Entercom will not appeal. Entercom had believed that its hosts had not actually engaged in negligent behavior since the identification of Patton was accidental and the station fixed the mistake as soon as it found out about it, as reported in the Kansas City Star’s coverage of the case. But that’s not exactly what happened. It stands to reason the station may have been able to avoid further angering Patton – and avoid the subsequent lawsuit – if it had acted quickly when Patton spoke with program director Scott Geiger hours after the bit aired. According to court records, during that conversation, Geiger questioned Patton’s statement that she was not a porn star, even asking her, “How do you know that you’re not a porn star?” He also promised to call her back after investigating the incident but never did.
WKQK, Memphis Transitions to Country. In the Memphis market, Entercom jettisons classic hits on WKQK in favor of country-formatted “94.1 The Wolf.” Vice president and market manager Dan Barron comments, “We are thrilled to introduce the highly successful ‘Wolf’ brand to Memphis. There is a huge appetite for today’s country music and we are proud to share this with Memphians. ‘The Wolf’ is the perfect complement to our local Entercom stations including sports WMFS-AM ‘ESPN 790,’ sports WMFS-FM ‘ESPN Radio,’ hot AC WMC-FM ‘FM 100,’ and adult contemporary WRVR ‘The River.’” According to program director Chris Michaels, “‘The Wolf’ will be locally focused on music that country fans want. We are excited to bring this great brand and the most new country to Memphis.” After reaching a 4.1 (#10) in June (6+, Nielsen Audio PPM), WKQK notched a 3.5 (#11) in July and August (steady at #11). It was the market’s lone classic hits station and had been in the format the past six years, before making the switch last Friday (9/26) at 6:00 pm. “The Wolf” now joins a country field that includes Cumulus’ WGKX “Kix 106″ (8.0 in August, #4, 6+) and Mighty Media Group‘s WEBL “The Rebel” (1.3, #18).
Mighty Media Adds Classic Hits to Translator in Memphis. Responding to the departure of the classic hits format on WKQK, Mighty Media Group LP begins airing the classic hits format already heard on WGUE-AM, Memphis on translator W257CY at 99.3 FM. Positioned as “GUESS FM 99.3,” Mighty Media points out that the station limits the amount of commercials that air on the station. Program director Tom Freeman says, “We couldn’t be more excited to have the new ‘GUESS FM 99.3’ super-serve the legion of established loyal classic hits listeners here in Memphis. According to the latest Nielsen ratings, the last classic hits station has been averaging about 175,000 loyal listeners every week and we hope to transition and grow that audience with extra features and the added local appeal of ‘GUESSFM 99.3.’” Sales manager Curt Peterson adds, “I am pleased that commercial breaks will be short and infrequent so that advertiser messages will stand out and listeners can enjoy the most hits per hour.”
Curtis Media Flips WFNL-AM, Raleigh to Bluegrass. Last year the International Bluegrass Music Association moved its annual convention to the Raleigh area. Figuring the region’s connection to the genre is important, Curtis Media Group announces it is flipping former comedy-formatted WFNL-AM to all bluegrass. This year’s convention begins tomorrow (9/30) and runs through the week. Curtis Media EVP Trip Savery comments, “Our commitment to bluegrass started when WPTF hired Flatt & Scruggs in 1952. We are very proud to bring a part of our heritage back to the airwaves.”
Handa Joins ‘NASH FM 92.3’ in San Francisco. KBBY, Ventura, California program director and air personality Angie Handa heads north to become the APD and midday jock at Cumulus Media’s country KSJO, San Jose “NASH FM 92.3.” Handa will hold down the 10:00 am to 3:00 pm slot at the station and will work with program director Mac Daniels on production, imaging and music scheduling. Daniels says of Handa, “Angie brings a high degree of talent and broadcast experience on and off air with a fresh perspective that will continue to grow the ‘NASH’ brand in the San Francisco – Oakland – San Jose Bay Area. I am very proud and excited to have her joining the team.”
More RadioInfo Career Moves. Air personality No Name exits the afternoon drive slot at CBS RADIO’s alternative KITS, San Francisco “Live 105.” No Name announces his departure via his blog and says there are too many people with whom he’s worked at CBS for whom he has love and respect so he’s choosing not be negative about the change. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org…..Moving from middays at American General Media’s CHR KKXX “Hits 93.1” to the company’s sister hip hop KISV “Hot 94.1” where she’ll be the new evening jock is Monisha “Mo” Mann…..Mike Scott is named program director at Adams Radio’s country WBTU, Fort Wayne “US 93.3” and W277AK “Great Country 103.3.”…..Cody Welling is promoted from GSM to director of sales for the Cumulus Media Toledo/Monroe cluster.
Katz-Commissioned Study: Radio Effective Way to Reach Swing Voters. A study commissioned by Katz Media Group shows swing voters are regular radio users – 81% of those identified as swing voters report listening to AM/FM radio regularly. Moreover, voters across the political spectrum report that radio ads are more credible than the ads they see on the internet by a 56-35 margin, which increases to a 62-38 margin among low-turnout voters. The survey was handled by Vox Populi Polling to examine how much influence radio has in the electoral marketplace. The sample size for the survey was 1,059 active voters. Other results from the study include: Swing voters spend 10% more time with radio daily than the average American voter; 67% of swing voters listen to FM regularly, while 14% are exclusively AM radio listeners; 65% of low-turnout Republicans and Democrats say they listen to FM music on a regular basis; and 61% of swing voters agree that radio is a good way for political candidates to reach them. KMG EVP of strategy, analytics & research Stacey Lynn Schulman says, “This research illustrates that radio is both a habitual and influential medium for reaching voters who can make the difference on Election Day. In the race for credibility, radio outshines online advertising by a wide margin in the minds of still impressionable voters.”
CBS RADIO Opens DC Performance Space Sponsored by DC Lottery. Gearing up for the first performance, CBS RADIO Washington, DC and the DC Lottery are announcing the grand opening of “DC Lottery Live,” a state-of-the-art, street-level studio and performance space that the company says will “serve as an entertainment showcase in the heart of the trendy Capitol Riverfront neighborhood.” Pop rock artist Gavin DeGraw will headline the facility’s first-ever event with a private show on Thursday, October 9. The DC Lottery Live venue is part of CBS RADIO’s new broadcast home for WPGC-FM, WIAD “94.7 FRESH-FM,” WJFK-FM “106.7 The FAN,”WLZL “El Zol 107.9,” WNEW-FM, “All News 99.1 WNEW,” WJFK-AM, “1580 CBS Sports Radio.” CBS RADIO SVP and market manager Steve Swenson comments, “We are proud to unveil this unique venue that will showcase a variety of live events and appeal to the entire community, whether they enjoy music, sports, entertainment or interacting with today’s newsmakers. With DC Lottery as our partner we can bring our brands closer to the audience and enhance their experience.”
Moscow, Idaho’s ’99.5 Bull Country’ to Hold Radio-A-Thon. For the third year in a row Inland Northwest Broadcasting-owned country outlet KZZL, Moscow, Idaho “99.5 Bull Country” is holding the “Bull Country Community Cares Radio-A-Thon” sponsored by the local Sam Dial Jewelers. The fundraiser takes place on Thursday and Friday, October 9 and 10. During the past two years the station has raised more than $17,000 for the United Way of Pullman, Washington and United Way of Moscow/Latah.
Fourth Annual College Radio Day Is Friday. Now in its fourth year, the college radio event founded by William Paterson University associate professor of communications Dr. Rob Quicke is set for Friday, October 3. This year’s CRD president, Peter Kreten, GM of WXAV, Chicago (St. Xavier University), expects hundreds of college radio stations to take part. Among the highlights for this year will be: The Lumineers’ Jeremiah Fraites, Andrew W.K., Sean Astin, Ty Segall, the Dropkick Murphys’ Matt Kelly, Marko from Sugarcult, all available for exclusive interviews; plus, the first-ever College Radio Day Simulcast takes place at 1:00 pm ET with more than 50 college stations broadcasting the specially produced one-hour show.
LaRoche Tapped for Mornings at ‘Live 95.5’ in Portland. At Alpha Media’s CHR KBFF, Portland “Live 95.5,” Bryan LaRoche is named co-host of the morning drive show alongside Hannah Byrom. LaRoche most recently was PM drive personality at iHeartMedia’s WKSL, Jacksonville “97.9 Kiss FM.” He also worked in Detroit at WKQI “Channel 95.5” as APD and music director. Alpha Portland VP of programming Phil Becker says, “I’m excited to once again be working with Bryan. I’ve watched him develop over the years and he’s turned into a talent that I would not like to compete against. Teaming him up with Hannah and forming Portland’s only local CHR morning show is going to be a great thing for our listeners, advertisers and brand for a long time to come.”
Norm Feuer Exits Role as GM of BCA’s San Diego Stations. Longtime radio executive Norm Feuer is retiring from his position as general manager of Broadcast Company of the Americas’ San Diego operations – sports XEPRS “The Mighty 1090” and classic hits XHPRS “Max 105.7.” During his long career, Feuer has worked for iHeartMedia and founded Triathlon Broadcasting and Force II Communications. Radio management pro Mike Glickenhaus is being tapped to serve as interim GM for the stations.
Nathan Butler Joins Clear Channel Satellite. Named the new director of operations for Clear Channel Satellite is Nathan Butler. The company says Butler has served in the radio broadcasting, engineering and technology field for years. His background includes director of operations at Kentucky News Network and Total Traffic Network. His expertise includes working with the X-Digital System, radio broadcasting, radio programming, social networking, broadcast journalism, radio producing and digital media.
More RadioInfo Career Moves. Four weekenders at CBS RADIO’s classic hits KRTH, Los Angeles “K-Earth” have been let go as the station tweaks its weekend programming. Gone are Sylvia Aimerito, Bruce Chandler, Dave Randall, and Christian Wheel…..At the New York City iHeartMedia station group, Colleen Shea is named producer for the “Cubby & Carolina in the Morning” show on hot AC WKTU. Shea’s produced the Romeo-hosted “Saturday Night Online” show, the “iHeartRadio Countdown,” and worked on the Premiere Networks end of the iHeartRadio Music Festival…..Triple A programming pro Amy Miller is the new APD at North Texas Public Broadcasting’s KKXT, Dallas. Miller most recently served at Davis Media’s WTYD, Deltaville, Virginia (Newport News-Norfolk market) triple A as program director. Her other experience includes stints at KFOG, San Francisco and KZSC, Santa Cruz, California…..A budget-related move forces the exit of Tommy Carrera, a.k.a. Tommy C, from the morning show at CBS RADIO-owned country outlet KFRG-FM, Riverside “K-Frog.” Carrera had been co-hosting mornings with Scott Ward for the last nine years. Now, midday personality Heather Froglear will co-host the morning show with Ward and Christy McLeap takes over the entire midday shift…..The San Antonio-based, syndicated Billy Madison morning show is added to the lineup at Sun Broadcasting’s rock WXNX, Fort Myers…..After a year away from radio in the TV business, Jessica Martinez returns to Great Scott-owned hip hop WOCQ, Ocean City-Salisbury, Maryland “OC104” where she’s again paired up with Bill Baker on the morning drive show.
Tom Joyner Announces Dates for Next Year’s ‘Party with a Purpose’ Cruise. The 16th annual Tom Joyner Foundation Fantastic Voyage – a charter cruise dubbed the “Party with a Purpose” that benefits students and Historically Black Colleges and Universities – is set for departure April 11, 2015. Artists performing during the eight-day cruise will include: R. Kelly, Jennifer Hudson, Earth Wind & Fire, TLC, LL Cool J featuring DJ Z-Tri, Fantasia, TV One’s R&B Divas: Chrisette Michele, Michel’le, Syleena Johnson, Lil’ Mo, and Monifah, plus Mary Mary, War, Ruben Studdard, Millie Jackson, and The Family Stone. The cruise has sold out for the past 15 years and Joyner states, “This is one of those special experiences that will stay with you forever.”
Bill McMahon: Perhaps We Should Focus on What We are Good at and That Which the Public Still Wants and Needs. In a new opinion piece posted in RadioInfo today (9/25) by veteran radio consultant and talent coach Bill McMahon, the following questions are presented to radio broadcasters: What business are you in? Does your business have a future? He says, “These seem like fundamental questions radio broadcasters should be asking themselves right now.” In it McMahon adds his voice to the chorus of industry opinions supporting the preservation of audio-only media as one of — if not the — major products of “radio” in the emerging unified multi-media platform marketplace. McMahon sarcastically says, “This vision for the future seems perfect for radio broadcasters who create precious little content of any kind. It makes total sense to go compete with everyone in the entertainment business. Sure, why not? Go take on Disney and Live Nation. You have all kinds of talent and experience creating video entertainment. You’ll be great at creating and promoting massive concert events. This is the kind of stuff your current customers have come to expect from you. You have lots of resources ready to commit to these enterprises. They’ll no doubt drive lots of additional listening to your AM and FM radio stations. Like Nike says, you should ‘just do it!’” He concludes on a serious note, “Yikes! Let’s get real! What’s wrong with the business you’re in right now? What’s wrong with the audio entertainment business? Doesn’t it have a future? Audio entertainment is unique and powerful. It involves the consumer in creating the experience it provides. Sound generates pictures and emotions in minds and hearts. The effect is deeper and more memorable than anything on a screen. When you hear someone laughing or crying you don’t need to see them to fully experience their joy or sorrow. Music can change your mood instantly. The sound and the lyrics create a vibe. Music is mind altering, heart penetrating, and memory making. Audio entertainment can be consumed while you’re doing other things like walking, running, driving, or making love. Audio entertainment will never go out of style. Americans spend more than four hours per day with audio entertainment according to the “Share of the Ear” study from Edison Research. Audio entertainment has an enduring future as long as great audio entertainment is created. Radio broadcasters are in the audio entertainment business. Why not stay there? Why not focus your limited resources on creating extraordinary audio entertainment? Why not be really good – even exceptional – at something, rather than average or mediocre at everything. Your current consumers are predisposed to using and appreciating audio entertainment. Why not concentrate on creating new audio entertainment content that surprises, amazes, and delights them. Hire gifted artists who love creating content for the theater of the mind. Create content in all shapes and sizes and distribute it on the platform that fits it best. That’s a future that makes sense for radio broadcasters. To read Bill McMahon’s entire piece, please click here.
Radio to Be on Hand at Advertising Week Conference in NYC Next Week. When Advertising Week kicks off in New York City next week, radio will be a segment of the media industry presenting during the four-day conference. One of the panel highlights will be titled, “Voices of the Original Social Media,” hosted by the RAB and moderated by RAB president and CEO Erica Farber, on Tuesday, September 30 at 11:30 am ET. This session will feature both nationally syndicated air talent and local stars relating their experiences with listeners and brand partners and how that’s being leveraged over the airwaves and on digital platforms. The panel will include: NBC Sports Radio Network’s Amani Toomer, Premiere Networks’ Bobby Bones, WQHT, New York “Hot 97” morning personality Ebro Darden, and WMIB, Miami “103.5 The Beat” midday personality Angie Martinez. iHeartMedia chairman and CEO Bob Pittman will take part in a panel titled, “Loss of Serendipity” on Wednesday, October 1 alongside MediaLink chairman and CEO, Michael Kassan and Google SVP global marketing Lorraine Twohill during which they will “explore the flip side of data-tailored content creation and distribution by considering the importance of serendipity.” Entercom president and CEO David Field will moderate a panel titled “Evolution or Revolution Part II” on Thursday, October 2. His panelists will include: Enterprise Group president Jim Doyle, The New York Times EVP of advertising Meredith Kopit Levien, TBWA president and CEO Troy Ruhanen, Centaur Media CEO Andria Vidler, and Shelly Palmer of Shelly Palmer Digital Living. They will talk about “disruption, real-time reinvention, retaining and growing share, and balancing today with tomorrow.”
Hearst Baltimore’s Cecil to Exit. Director of sales Bob Cecil has shared his decision to leave Hearst Baltimore’s two-station combo. President and general manager Cary Pahigian comments that Cecil has “contributed immeasurably” to the Baltimore tandem “for several decades,” but “after careful consideration” he will “step away and enjoy time with his family. We thank Bob for his extraordinary efforts and wish him only the best.” In a staff memo, Cecil writes, “It has been a great privilege teaming with the Ravens, Orioles, Naval Academy, and so many other terrific business partners throughout my career. I am appreciative of the support of Cary Pahigian and look forward to his – and your – great success in the years ahead.” Hearst Baltimore consists of WIYY “98 Rock” and talker WBAL. Cecil joined the stations 14 years ago; his last day there will be one week from Friday (10/3).
Salierno Named Interim GM of Star Radio Group. Longtime radio sales executive Ralph Salierno is promoted to interim general manager of the Star Radio Group based in Fredericksburg, Virginia. For the past two years, Salierno has served as director of sales for the station group. He’s also worked in the industry in Orlando, Virginia Beach, Oklahoma City and Memphis. Star Radio Group is part of The Free Lance-Star Publishing Company which was purchased at a bankruptcy auction in May of this year by Sandton Capital Partners for $30.2 million. The radio stations are: country WFLS, hip hop WVBX, classic rock WWUZ, and news/talk WNTX-AM and translator W243BS at 96.5 FM. Free Lance-Star and Star Radio Group publisher and CEO Gene Carr states, “Ralph has been a key member of the Star Radio group and has earned this internal promotion. In his new duties as interim GM, he will continue to serve as the director of sales as well. Ralph has done a great job in driving revenue growth.” At the same time, the station announces Jeff Beck is promoted to program director for WFLS and WWUZ. He’ll also have a supervisory role over WVBX and WNTX. Carr adds, “Jeff brings years of service and industry knowledge to the team. This new management team will help to position the company for further growth.”
WCKX, Columbus ‘Power 105.7’ Adds ‘Clairissa Jenkins’ Phone Checks.’ The Radio One-owned hip hop outlet is the newest affiliate for Envision Networks-distributed Clairissa Jenkins’ Phone Checks, the daily prank phone call for radio stations’ use on-air, online and on demand. WCKX program director Big Bink comments, “These Phone Checks will definitely keep my audience engaged and laughing on the way to work! We are excited to be the only station in Columbus with Clairissa!” Envision says the morning show bit produced by Clairissa Jenkins takes phone scams to the next level with her loud, politically incorrect, in-your-face style. “No one is safe from Clairissa’s wrath and some of her recent targets have experienced unexpected telephonic calamity including rabid dog attacks, fireplace cremations, and giving birth over the phone.” Envision also says listeners can set up their friends, family, and co-workers to be phone checked by Clairissa via the web, cultivating listener engagement and driving web traffic to affiliated station websites.
Diana Krall Postpones Tour, Album Release Due to Illness. Jazz pianist and singer Diana Krall is suffering from a severe case of pneumonia and the affliction is keeping her off the road this fall and postponing the release of her new record Wallflower (Verve Records). Wallflower was due for North American release on October 21 and the U.S. leg of her “Wallflower World Tour” was to kick off in Phoenix on November 7. Her condition has worsened after first being diagnosed and she’s under orders not to travel or undertake promotional activities for at least two months. She says in a statement, “I’m deeply saddened that I will have to postpone the release of my new album. Performing is both a privilege and joy for me. When I go out on stage I want to be able to give it everything. Taking this time to rest and recuperate will allow me to do that.”
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 (9/24) includes such names as: You + Me, Pink, Dallas Green, City and Colour, Nick Celino, John Legend, Sam Smith, Miley Cyrus, Sterling Fox, Cydel Gabutero, Lil Dicky, Lack of Afro, Herbal T, Wax, Jack Tyson-Charles, Annie Lennox, Live, Chad Taylor, Jenny Lewis, Beck, Johnny Winter, Ben Harper, Billy Idol, Steve Stevens, Jamestown Revival, Alt-J, Pat Green, Lyle Lovett, Ben Rush, Railers, Young Rising Sons, Bleachers, Whilk & Misky, Anastacia, Tove Lo,and Alesso among others. To check out this valuable information, please click here.
SCBA White Paper Contrasts AM/FM Radio Satisfaction with That of Pandora. In an effort to combat the perception that pureplays like Pandora are running away with consumer satisfaction – and more important, being an effective advertising medium – the Southern California Broadcasters Association is issuing its latest white paper titled, “Consumer Response and Listening Satisfaction of Broadcast Radio vs. Pandora Internet Music Service.” Using data from Bridge Ratings LLC and Scarborough, the study included a survey of 4,339 Pandora Prime users and 4,400 heavy users of broadcast radio. The SCBA states while marketers are always looking for something new and different, “questions of how the audience is measured and/or its effectiveness over time may not have been looked at in the rush of the ‘new media blitz’ on advertisers. Moreover, how is the consumer using broadcast radio vs. the Pandora internet music service over time and what are the trend lines advertisers should concern themselves with to protect their media investment and ensure the media plans are performing as they should?” Some of the conclusions reached by the SCBA include: customer dissatisfaction with Pandora over time as evidenced by a 40% drop in reported satisfaction over the course of three years; the collapse of session use on Pandora; and diminished awareness – or recall – of ads heard on Pandora versus broadcast radio. See the white paper here.
JVC Closes on West Palm Beach Signals; Flips WBGF and WSWN to Rock as ‘The Bar.’ As had been rumored in Florida media circles, the closing by JVC Media on a trio of signals in the West Palm Beach region brings about changes as the company drops the regional Mexican format and goes rock on WBGF-FM and WSWN-AM in Belle Glade, Florida (about 30 miles due west of West Palm Beach) as ’93.5 The Bar.’ The stations flipped at 12:00 noon on Tuesday (9/23) and began a 24-hour marathon of the Bubba the Love Sponge show before beginning a 10,000 song, commercial-free period. Bubba will hold down mornings on the simulcast. JVC market manager Shane Reeve comments, “This is the only place on the dial to hang out where there’s great music, good conversation, and tons of fun. We’re doing radio the old-fashioned way: personality driven. And the happy hours are going to be unbelievable!” The station says it will play “the best shots of 90s, 2K and current rock.”
Red Rock Radio Makes WWWI, Brainerd Part of KQ Network. The classic rock format based at Red Rock Radio-owned KQDS, Duluth expands to Red Rock’s WWWI, Brainerd, Minnesota. The company calls it the KQ Network and with the change the station will become “KQ96” as of October 6. The KQ Morning Show (pictured here) hosted by Jason Manning, Scott Savage and sportscaster Bruce Ciskie will air on the station from 6:00 am to 10:00 am. Red Rock Radio president Shawn Skramstad comments, “We are very much looking forward to providing listeners in the Brainerd/Baxter Lakes area with our newest KQ station. The KQ brand is well known throughout Minnesota, and ‘KQ96’ will nicely complement our other stations in the area.”
More RadioInfo Career Moves. At Kemp Broadcasting-owned rhythmic CHR KVEG, Las Vegas “Hot 97.5,” Natalia Hernandez joins the morning show alongside host Miggy Santos. She most recently served with Beasley Broadcasting’s WPOW, Miami “Power 96.”