“Riot” by Mandy Rain (Mandyland)
Mandy Rain started her career at 13 on a Nickelodeon music television program produced by Nick Cannon. Cannon realized her talent and began grooming her for an eventual solo career.
Fast forward and Rain announced late May of this year that her debut extended play was finally available for pre-ordering through online music outlets. Additionally, she also announced that she was partnering with PledgeMusic to capitalize on the crowd funding ability of her music direct to fans.
105.1 “The Beach” WOMX, Daytona Beach is seriously all about this track. There’s information about the song, links to the video, and some photos on the station’s website. Not to mention the track plays – with a custom intro from Rain – immediately on the station’s website.
“High Places” by Anna Graceman (Another Girl)
Anna Graceman is an American folk, rock, and soul singer-songwriter/pianist that has caught the internet’s attention – a few times – resulting in her hitting a collective One Million views achievement earlier this year. At the age of nine, Graceman made several appearances on national television including The Ellen DeGeneres Show. Two years later, she’s in the finals on season six of America’s Got Talent. Two years later, she performed 43 critically acclaimed shows at The Palazzo Theater in The Venetian Hotel and Resort over an eight-week span.
This is one of four singles she has released this year – and it just keeps getting better and better. Her voice is amazing and considering she’s only 14, I would imagine that we will be hearing from her for quite a while.
(This is the acoustic version … there’s also a studio single.)
“New York State of Mind” by Barbara Streisand featuring Billy Joel Partners (Columbia)
Barbara Streisand is releasing an album of duets with male superstar singers, including the late Elvis Presley and Grammy winner Michael Buble, in September. Other artists featured on the 12-track album include John Legend, Babyface, Stevie Wonder, Andrea Bocelli and Streisand’s son, Jason Gould.
Listeners both in the Big Apple and out seem to be able to relate to Joel in the original “New York State of Mind.”
This may not be an add for your station, even after a listen or two. However, for some out there – this is something BIG.
We recently highlighted the debut single “Ghost” from Ella Henderson as a song worthy of a few minutes of your ear time. The second single, “Glow” is due out in less than a few weeks, and it — even more than the first one — is worth your attention.
“Glow” by Ella Henderson Chapter One (Syco)
Despite finishing sixth on the ninth season of TV’s British X-Factor, she signed a deal with Simon Cowell’s Syco records. Regarding her decision to sign with Syco, Henderson said, “The most important thing I was looking for was to be involved creatively, and which label presents me with the best team to bring the best out of me. The fact that [Cowell] is letting me be involved creatively is overwhelming.”
The album is due out September 22nd but that hasn’t prevented 102.5 “Fresh” KEZK, St. Louis from featuring an extensive story about Henderson on their website supplementing the adding of “Ghost” (and eventually “Glow”) to their playlist, and Henderson to the lineup of stars gracing the station’s airwaves.
“Take Me To Church” by Sinead O’Connor I’m Not Bossy, I’m The Boss (Nettwerk)
Does the world still hold a grudge against O’Connor for the now infamous SNL performance? If so – the world has missed some great music and I say that it’s time to let it go.
This album – her 11th – features 12 brand new songs that showcase her passion and direct prowess yet do so with an overarching fragility. O’Connor’s voice and lyrics are as powerful as they are tender; as raw as they are polished; as classic as they are fresh.
With “Take Me To Church,” O’Connor explains, “The protagonist I’m writing about has had a profoundly distressing experience from which she is ultimately able to not only salvage herself but give birth to herself, coming to the conclusion, ‘I am only one I should adore.’”
I heard this track in rotation on 91.3 KSUT public radio, an NPR affiliated station, in Southwest Colorado. The station provides national, local and international news, an eclectic music mix and cultural programming. Personally, I don’t think O’Connor is eclectic… but considering she may not have been on your radar – for whatever reason – it’s time to hear her again for the first time.
“Blame It On Me” by George Ezra Wanted On Voyage (Columbia)
We have been spotlighting this guy off and on for the past six months. Not the same song, but three different offerings. He’s been a big deal across the pond in his home country, and now his music is being released domestically.
We first shined the spotlight on George Ezra in March with “Cassy O’” because the track was a clap-happy boot stomper that highlighted the Bristol singer/songwriter’s talents. Of course, upon seeing the video – it was a flash back to seeing Rick Astley. The voice doesn’t quite match the guy… but oh wow. Ezra is actually oh wow plus, since he looks relatively young (he’s 20) – but his voice has the depth and soul of an aging crooner.
Golden-eared music director Karoline Kramer Gould is the brain behind the programming of “The Heights” – a 12-hour block featuring a unique blend of triple A formatted songs, drawing from an ever expanding bottomless pit of a deep playlist on WJCU 88.7 FM, a noncommercial broadcast station owned and operated by John Carroll University. Gould recommends George Ezra. She says, “I love Budapest and cannot wait for the full album. His voice is gorgeous.”
Most of the songs on his debut album are inspired by his lonesome travels last summer, the guitar being his only companion, when he filled his diaries with adventures of what he had seen while busking.
This song is exploding in Ireland and in South Africa… the same places he’s been dominating the itunes charts with his other singles for weeks. This guy is hot and should be considered for playlist addition.
(Beware of the bird poo…)
Golden-eared, on-air personality and interactive specialist, Bayley Brown from WKLC-FM (Rock 105) in St. Albans, West Virginia is always on the listen for music that will motivate her listeners to reach out to the station and thank them for keeping the quality rock coming. The station is an “everything that rocks” powerhouse that serves the Charleston market.
Brown tells RadioInfo about Chet Faker. She says, “I immediately thought ’this has quite the crossover hit potential’ when I first heard Chet Faker’s soulful track ‘Talk is Cheap’ off his debut album Built on Glass (Future Classic).” She continues, “The album debuted at # 1 on Australia’s ARIA Charts and the single did well down under as well as in France. Recently, the Melbourne songwriter’s first cut has begun to see a little airplay in the states and I can only imagine that this sensuous, engaging tune will capture the all spectrums of the American audience. “
Rita Ballou, afternoon co-host on KOBE-FM, Austin and prolific author of the Texas/Red Dirt Music blog, RawhideAndVelvet.com, says that Sunny Sweeney is “Pretty spunky. No princesses. No castles. No tear drops on her guitar! Forget Bro Country…that is BRA COUNTRY!”
When I first mentioned Sweeney (her track “Bad Girl Phase”), I asked if Bra Country was right for your station? Suggesting that even if it wasn’t, this track was still worthy of playlist consideration. However, this next track is more about the working class… whether they happen to be the bra wearing type or not.
“Everyone Else Can Kiss My Ass” by Sunny Sweeney Provoked (Aunt Daddy Records)
It’s not a new song – if you have happened to catch Sweeney in concert. However, up until being the final track on the new album, it had been formally unreleased… which is too bad, because I haven’t heard a working class anthem with teeth, balls, grit, and a beer foam mustache, in a long time. Star News wrote, “Sweeney delivers … with enough oomph to knock Jason Aldean over the Florida-Georgia Line.”
Or perhaps the Flora-Bama line…
“Flora-Bama” by Kenny Chesney
Imagine Kenny Chesney and 40,000 of his closest friends partying on the Florida-Alabama state line… well, it happened Saturday afternoon in a celebration he termed “Flora-Bama-lama.”
Announced as the country music superstar’s only concert appearance of 2014, the concert was named for the Flora-Bama Lounge and Package Store, an iconic, 50-year-old roadhouse situated just on the Florida side of the Florida-Alabama state line on Perdido Key.
From coverage by USA Today, “Chesney opened the concert with the new song and set to work making sure the audience’s day-long wait in the broiling Florida summer heat was time well spent. Performing for about 2½ hours, Chesney was as sweaty as his fans within just a couple of songs, giving his all through an eclectic set packed with new songs, old favorites and more.”
“The Devil Is All Around” by Shovels & Rope Swimmin’ Time (Dualtone Music)
This is the first cut from their upcoming sophomore release due out at the end of the month. Cary Ann Hearst and Michael Trent blend their roughhewn harmonies while kicking the classic form of country, one that relies upon courage and perseverance in the wake of hardships.
Golden-eared program director Jim McGuinn from 89.3 KCMP “The Current” in Minneapolis is a strong supporter and has added this track to the playlist rotation. The station is owned by Minnesota Public Radio and broadcasts a triple-A music format that includes a lot of plays from local artists.
“9TS (90s Baby)” by Redlight
The 90s are back baby! Or should I say the “9TS”? The repetitive lyrics and a wobbly bass line just calls out “let’s party like it’s 1990, baby”, as it shouts out to the bread and buttery base of 90s rave culture.
The video (which you could also post on the station website) is full of awesome vintage fashion set to sonic retro randomness that will easily get stuck in your head and keep listeners engaged longer.
“Take Shelter” by Years and Years
It starts out ominous but very quickly evolves into a polished dance track with a magnetic allure.
EQ Music wrote, “Years & Years placement of tropical dance beats nestled a crest, a bed of sub-bass underpinning is a simply divine combination, only more so in might when the soul expressed vocals of front man Olly Alexander trips out into the swaggered patter of hip gyrating rhythms that flow so readily, as if one was directly under a waterfall consisting of coconut water.”
The video for the song has the three musicians going down into the woods where they stumble upon a hippie figure cloaked in a shaggy coat, expressing ritualistic moves as a way of charming these young lads. It’s pretty trippy and worth mentioning should the song end up in your playlist.
“Skinny Love” by Birdy (Sebastian Carter Remix)
We last featured Sebastian Carter in February with his remix of “Ghosts” by Emily Underhill,“At only 19 years old, Sebastian Carter is making bodies melt and minds swoon with his ethereal downtempo ambience. In his latest remix of Emily Underhill’s glorious record ‘Ghosts’, the young beatsmith creates a delicate production underlined by melancholy violin chords, warm reverb and entrancing vocal loops. He hijacks her powerful and emotive vocal track and splices it with downtempo chords that pay tribute to house while keeping the ambiance chilled out.”
At 20, Carter shows us once again that musical maturity is based on sound – regardless of age or experience. There’s just this emotive weight in the grooves that makes anything he touches explode with crossover potential.
The Music Ninja writes, “Already with stirring retouches of The 1975, Bad Suns, and Alt J along with a few addictive originals; today Carter’s taken Birdy’s cover of the Bon Iver staple ‘Skinny Love’ and spun a tranquil web of house all over its pop leaning framework. With rising pads serving as a slow-burning build and simultaneous mood setting device, his airy synths are free to bubble their way to the surface while Birdy’s ethereal vocal stylings submerged in hazy reverb play as beautiful as ever amongst the wunderkind’s polished instrumentation.”
Duane Doobie is music editor/director of RadioInfo and reflects the composite musical opinions of the RadioInfo editorial staff. He can be emailed at firstname.lastname@example.org.
By Mike Kinosian,
In this order, we will focus on alternative (occasionally referred to as “modern rock” or “new rock”); rock (sometimes labeled “mainstream rock” or “active rock”); and adult alternative (occasionally listed as “album adult alternative” or “Triple A”).
Facilities that rank in the top 20 in a PPM market (6+, July 2014) comprise the following alternative scoreboards.
Nielsen Audio only releases audience estimates for stations that subscribe to its services. Owing to that reason, ratings stats in this RadioInfo analysis are limited to stations that pay Nielsen Audio for this data.
Remembering Don Pardo. “It’s Saturday Night Live.” One extremely simple sentence, yet only one exceptional voice will forever be associated with it or capable of making it sing. Don Pardo. The elegant gentleman with the huge booming pipes passed away Monday night (8/18) at the age of 96. His nearly-40 year association with NBC-TV’s “Saturday Night Live” was only one part of a voluminous resume on the network for which he had a lifetime pact. Only Bob Hope had a similar arrangement deal with the network. Revered by virtually anyone who has been behind a microphone, the beloved — and yes legendary — Pardo began his career in radio. The off-camera announcer for a multitude of game shows from “Jeopardy” to “Jackpot,” Don Pardo truly achieved pop culture status. “SNL” hosts and cast members felt they arrived once they heard their names uttered by him. Click here for managing editor/West Coast bureau chief Mike Kinosian‘s brief retrospective salute to the Massachusetts native and 2010 inductee in the Television Academy Hall of Fame whose voice and persona were a staple for so many.
King Named VP/Programming – Network Formats at WestwoodOne. Townsquare Media regional operations manager and western region brand leader/country George King is appointed vice president of programming, network formats for Westwood One. He will oversee the company’s 24-hour country formats, which include “Mainstream Country,” “Hot Country,” “Classic Country,” and “Real Country.” Network programming president Kirk Stirland comments that, “George’s experience in markets large and small, along with his position in the country music world, makes him a perfect fit for this role at Westwood One. He is joining an all-star programming management team, and he will be working with a first-rate air staff on our biggest format category.” According to King, “The way Westwood One is able to integrate local content into a national feed will continue to be an essential way our business moves successfully into the future. I am truly excited to work with this remarkable technology, and on the team creating radio with it.” Prior to Townsquare Media, King held programming and operations positions at Washington, DC’s WMZQ; KNIX, Phoenix; San Antonio’s KCYY & KKYX; and WCTO & WLEV, Allentown. The past ACM board member begins his Westwood One duties next month (9/15); he will be based in the company’s 24-hour format production center in Denver.
SCBA Schedules Awards Luncheon for Outstanding Achievement in Radio Advertising. The special event of the Southern California Broadcasters Association (SCBA) and SCBA’s Sales Management Council will be held in approximately two months (10/16) at the Sheraton Universal Hotel in Universal City (Los Angeles). Selected regional advertisers will be honored with “Outstanding Achievement in Radio Advertising” awards. Former SCBA Lifetime Achievement Award winner – and current chairman and chief operating officer of U.S. International Media – Dennis Holt will be this year’s keynote speaker. SCBA president Thom Callahan explains that, “Based on last year’s sold-out event, we have expanded the nominating categories and our winning advertisers. We are absolutely thrilled by both client and agency response to this prestigious luncheon. This year’s winners represent the robust diversity and energy of Southern California radio advertisers; we are so proud to honor them. [This year's festivities] is on-pace to be another record sell-out. The enthusiasm and commitment to Southern California radio will be showcased by senior client management, their agencies, our member stations, and special guests – all coming together on this one special day to honor this year’s Southern California Radio Award winners.” Being recognized this year are: Children’s Miracle Network; First 5 California; Galpin Ford; Morongo Casino; WaBa Grill; and Westside Rentals. Awards in six categories of creative radio commercials, using both Southern California broadcast radio and its digital platforms, are voted on by the Sales Management Council.
Mandis Lands WWTN’s Programming Chair. Cumulus Nashville talker WWTN “Super Talk 99.7 WTN” elevates Dan Mandis to program director. Cumulus executive vice president and co-chief operating officer John Dickey comments, “Dan Mandis is an accomplished spoken-word programmer and the perfect choice to guide WWTN into its next phase as the place where Nashville comes to learn about and celebrate life in one of America’s greatest cities.” Mandis remarks, “WWTN is an amazing station with some great local talent. I am looking forward to my expanded role with Cumulus Nashville, and appreciate the faith Cumulus has shown in my abilities to take WWTN to the next level.” Mandis is the station’s weekday 12:00 noon – 3:00 pm host. In his 25-year radio career, the Los Angeles native has worked for Los Angeles talker KFI, where he did news, traffic and production. Prior to embarking on his own career as a talk show host, Mandis was associated with Dr. Laura Schlessinger’s syndicated program.
Ausham Appointed Program Director of Atlanta’s “Rock 100.5.” Former Clear Channel Northeast Ohio operations manager Greg Ausham is named program director of Cumulus Atlanta’s WNNX “Rock 100.5.” Cumulus corporate programmer/rock formats Troy Hanson comments, “We are very pleased to add another high caliber programmer in Greg Ausham to our industry-leading team of program directors at Cumulus. Greg’s vast experience will be tapped into and felt immediately on our classic rock brand in Atlanta at ‘Rock 100.5.’” Ausham jokes that, “After working in Detroit, Minneapolis, Milwaukee, and Cleveland, it will be nice to live somewhere where snow and ice are more of an anomaly than just expected. It is an honor to get to work for the great people at Cumulus.” Over the course of his 30-year programming career, Ausham – who begins at “Rock 100.5″ immediately – has held the PD title at WRIF, Detroit; WMMS, Cleveland; WLVQ, Columbus; and WLZR, Milwaukee. In addition, he was operations manager in Columbus for the former Jacor.
Kelly Transfers to Clear Channel WPB as Director of Sales. Clear Channel Sarasota director of sales Bryan Kelly remains in the Sunshine State, but as of next Monday (8/25), he will traverse from the state’s west coast to West Palm Beach on the east coast in a similar capacity. West Palm Beach market manager John Hunt observes, “Bryan produced outstanding sales results in Sarasota and I know he will do the same in West Palm Beach.” Kelly comments, “I look forward to joining the exceptional West Palm Beach team assembled by John Hunt and [Clear Channel regional program manager] Dave Denver. It has been a goal of mine to represent Clear Channel in a fast-paced and competitive market.” Kelly will oversee the sales efforts for Clear Channel’s 10-station West Palm Beach cluster consisting of country WAVW; talk WAXE; talk WBZT; talk WJNO; classic rock WKGR; CHR WLDI; adult contemporary WOLL; oldies WQOL; Spanish contemporary WRLX; and talk WZZR. His previous Clear Channel assignments were in Tampa and Allentown.
“Billy Madison Show” and Nineball Radio Enter Syndication Deal. Owing to the just-signed pact with Nineball Radio, the weekday morning “Billy Madison Show” is now available for national distribution. Madison currently airs on Cox Media Group Tampa talker WHPT “The Bone, Real-Raw-Radio” and on CMG San Antonio rocker KISS. Nineball Radio president and chief executive officer Stefan Jones opines, “A show with such chemistry is rare, especially with the support of such a great company like Cox Media Group. Billy is a true professional who preps relentlessly and continually creates a show that is like nothing else being offered in rock syndication. He took KISS from 16th to number one, and he is number one at WHPT. I think the numbers speak for themselves. We are excited to be a part of it.” Madison’s show arrived in San Antonio in late-2011. Jones formed independent creator/clearance house for radio programming and services Nineball Radio as an underground prep service in 2005.
Wiggins Joins “Get Up Crew” on Boston’s “Hot 96.9.” Starting today (Tuesday, 8/19), former NFL player Jermaine “Wiggy” Wiggins is part of the “Get Up Crew” on Boston rhythmic hot AC WBQT “Hot 96.9.” In another roster move, the station’s mid-day talent “Melissa” also becomes a “Get Up Crew” member; “Pebbles” continues as the show’s anchor. Greater Media Boston director of programming Cadillac Jack explains, “Morning shows are built to excel when the personalities are live, local, and make a connection with their marketplace. The deep and real footprint that ‘Pebbles,’ ‘Melissa’ and ‘Wiggy’ each already have individually in Boston make the ‘Get Up Crew’ an unbeatable team and the start of another great chapter in Hot 96.9′s success story.” Wiggins comments that he is “super excited” to be working with “Pebbles” and “Melissa,” as well as “everyone else at ‘Hot 96.9.’ I can’t wait to do my part to help the ‘Hot 96.9′ morning show continue to be one of the hottest shows in Boston.” Meanwhile, “Pebbles” points out that she and “Melissa” have worked together “for years” and “I am excited to have her back on the morning team. I have also had the pleasure to get to know ‘Wiggy’ over the past few weeks. I can assure you – we could not be more different – it is going to be entertaining.” Wiggins most recently was at CBS Radio Boston’s WBZ-FM “The Sports Hub,” as “the man with an opinion on everything.” In addition, the NFL analyst has worked at Boston sports outlets Comcast SportsNet New England, WBZ-TV, WHDH-TV, New England Sports Network (NESN), and the Kraft Sports Production show “Patriots This Week.” Wiggins played college football at the University of Georgia and was signed by the New York Jets as an undrafted free agent in 1999. The East Boston native earned a Super Bowl ring with the New England Patriots in Super Bowl XXXVI (2001); the 39-year-old tight end also played for the Indianapolis Colts, Carolina Panthers, Minnesota Vikings, Jacksonville Jaguars and Florida Tuskers.
“DJ Laz Morning Show” To Debut on Miami’s WFLC. Starting next Monday (8/25), DJ Laz returns to South Florida radio as morning host on Cox Media Group Miami CHR WFLC “Hits 97.3.” DJ Laz will be accompanied by co-host “Kimmy,” who segues from the cluster’s co-owned urban contemporary WEDR. Cox Media Group Miami vice president and market manager Rob Babin states, “We are excited that DJ Laz will be joining our ‘Hits 97.3′ team and we look forward to launching a new local morning show custom built for South Florida.” CMG Miami director of branding & programming Jill Strada remarks, “I am excited to welcome DJ Laz back to morning radio in Miami. He is a star with undeniable talent. We have such great talent within our stations – I am happy to be able to promote someone within the CMG Miami family. Laz and ‘Kimmy’ together are a superstar team.” DJ Laz comments that he is “so pumped” to get back to doing “what I love in the city I love. Radio is about to get fun again,” while “Kimmy” thanks Strada and CMG Miami “for believing in me and giving me this opportunity to grow. I can’t wait to get started with my new partner – DJ Laz. Miami mornings will never be the same.” DJ Laz spent 22 years in Miami at cross-town rhythmic CHR WPOW “Power 96.”Most recently, the platinum recording artist (“Move, Shake, Drop” and “Esa Morena”) was on SBS Broadcasting Spanish contemporary siblings WRMA, Miami and KXOL, Los Angeles.
More RadioInfo Career Moves. Emmis New York City rhythmic CHR WQHT “Hot 97″ music director Karlie Hustle resigns; however, in an Instagram post, she indicates that she is remaining “through the end of the month to assist in the transition of duties.” Hustle further notes she is not going to a cross-town radio competitor. “I have spent the past three years living my dream in New York City, working at what I believe to be the most important radio station in the world and I have been a part of launching the careers of future stars from behind the scenes. It has given me the confidence and the enhanced platform to start my own [bowtie] business. I’ll never forget the team at ‘Hot 97′ for being so warm and embracing this girl from the west so fully” … Townsquare Media hot AC WSJO “SoJO 104.9,” Atlantic City, New Jersey promotes music director Heather DeLuca to brand manager. Market general manager Michael Ruble notes, “Over the last few years, she has grown in roles and has helped make ‘SoJO’ a true force in our market, on-air and especially online. She has such passion for the station and lives ‘SoJO’ in every way.” DeLuca has been with the station since 2009 … Envision Networks’ “The Core” welcomes Lagniappe Broadcasting‘s KXRR “Rock 106,” Monroe, Louisiana as the newest of over 350 affiliates. “Rock 106″ airs the weekly two-hour Meltdown-hosted/Steve Black-programmed show, which features the music/artists of the 1990s, Sunday morning at 6:00 am.
By Mike Kinosian
Managing Editor/West Coast Bureau Chief
Tucson — While many in the industry continue to agonize over the peculiar details following the death of Casey Kasem and the tragic suicide of Robin Williams, news late last night produced yet more chills, as we learned that Don Pardo’s golden voice has been silenced.
Countless professionals in the industry have strived to emulate the cadence, delivery, and unmistakable sound of the longtime NBC announcer. It is next to preposterous to believe another talent will do the opening cast credits to “Saturday Night Live” or that anyone else could have introduced Art Fleming (“Don Pardo – tell him what he’s won”) on the original daytime version of “Jeopardy.” In fact, he did a memorable cameo on “Weird Al” Yankovic’s 1984 parody song “I Lost on Jeopardy.”
By Duane Doobie
SPRINGFIELD, MA – The following thoughts might irk a number of programmers who subscribe to the “Greatest Hits of the 70s, 80s… etc.” school of radio station branding – but I am compelled to speak my mind because it pains me to silently stand by while they continue to shoot themselves in the foot.
It might have worked back in the 80s and 90s, but branding stationality by musical years is a horrible idea in 2014 – almost 15% of the way into the 21st century – that exposes a lazy lack of original thinking when it comes to luring listeners without pigeonholing your station into an inflexible position that is irrelevant – even repellant — to most listeners in this day and age.
Worse, actually subscribing to the dogma that “we ONLY play music from certain years” and clearly demarcating unbending cut-off dates of what you will and will not play when crafting a playlist is shooting yourself in…. wait, I already used that cliché… it’s cutting off your nose to spite your face.
It might work for SiriusXM, but they have a truckload of channels to play with. You don’t.