Category: Industry News

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

| May 31, 2016

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nummedaveHubbard Radio Names Numme ‘Rock 98.9’ Seattle PD.  Rock radio pro Dave Numme is the new program director for Hubbard Radio’s KVRQ, Seattle “Rock 98.9.”  Numme was most recentlykvrq with CBS RADIO in San Francisco where he programmed KITS-FM “Live 105” and served as VP programming for rock and alternative formats.  He also was the first PD at KUFO, Portland and served there from 1991 through 2006.  Hubbard Radio Seattle VP/market manager Marc Kaye says, “We are so excited that Dave is returning to the Pacific Northwest and joining us at Hubbard Radio Seattle.  He understands the market, the opportunity, and will identify great talent that can make a huge difference in building the ‘ROCK 98-9’ brand.”

San Diego’s KSSX Becomes “Jam’n KSSX95.7.” Formerly known as rhythmic hot AC “95.7 Kiss FM,” iHeartMedia San Diego’s KSSX transitioned to rhythmic CHR late Friday (5/27) and now utilizes “Jam’n 95.7 – Today’s Hip Hop and R&B” as its handle. Senior vice president of programming for iHeartMedia Riverside Rob Scorpio is programming the station, which is airing non-stop, commercial-free music through the (Memorial Day) weekend. According to iHeartMedia San Diego-Riverside regional senior vice president of programming John Peake, “We are fortunate to have Rob’s level of expertise leading ‘Jam’n 95.7.’ He has incredible passion for the format. We are excited about not only the music changes he has implemented, but also the amazing talent lineup he has assembled.” Scorpio previously worked at KKBT “The Beat,” Los Angeles; KBXX “The Box,” Houston; and WPGC-FM, Washington, D.C. His on-air roster in San Diego features Pablo & Tati (morning drive); Mercedes “Cedes” Howard (mid-day); Frankie V (afternoon drive); and Beto Perez (night). Representative “Jam’n 95.7” artists include Beyonce, Chris Brown, J Cole, Drake, Fetty Wap, G-Eazy, Jeremih, Kid Ink, Kendrick Lamar, Rihanna, The Weeknd, Kanye West, and Yo Gotti. In the 2.1 – 2.7 range (6+) the past seven Nielsen Audio PPM survey periods, KSSX ranks #17 in April (2.4, 6+); Entercom adult contemporary KXSN “Sunny 98.1” is on top with a 6.6 (6+).

iheartmedia logo smallAnother Investor Sues iHeartMedia.  This time, the complaint against iHeartMedia comes from Gamco Asset Management Inc., which owns close to 10% of Clear Channel Outdoor Holdings public stock.  According to a report by Bloomberg, Gamco is saying that shareholders of Clear Channel Outdoor Holdings are not being protected first and foremost and that the subsidiary is being given short shrift in order to benefit the parent company.  An iHeartMedia spokesman says the asset shift is legal.  Gamco was in iHeartMedia’s corner during the recent case iHM won after being sued by senior lenders for the move.  Still, Gamco is alleging the stock’s shift to Broader Media Inc., harms CCOH’s ability “to exploit business opportunities.”

harrisonUpCloseFarOutBold Gold Media Group CEO Vince Benedetto Interviewed on ‘Up Close and Far Out with Michael Harrison.’  One of the rising young stars of radio station group ownership, Vince Benedetto, is the guest on this week’s installment of the PodcastOne international hit “Up Close and Far Out with Michael Harrison.”  Benedetto, who just turned 40, bought his first station at 29.  In slightly more than a decade, he has built Bold Gold Media Group into a chain that owns and operates nine radio stations, fifteen broadcast frequencies, and multiple digital media platforms throughout Eastern Pennsylvania and Upstate New York.  Benedetto is a graduate of the United States Air Force Academy, a former Air Force captain and Air Force OSI special agent, where he worked on counter-intelligence, counter-terrorism and felony level investigative efforts for the Department ofbenedettovince Defense.  In 2013, Bold Gold was nominated for a Pennsylvania Governor’s ImPAct Award for Entrepreneurialism and Vince was recently named by RadioInk magazine as one of the “Top 30 Under 40 Rising Stars in the Radio Industry.”  Benedetto also established and runs a non-profit foundation providing support for young people entering broadcasting and studying the U.S. Constitution.  In the podcast, Harrison and Benedetto discuss the extremely positive aspects of radio ownership that still exist in 2016 and analyze broadcast radio’s transition into the digital era.  They examine the differences between the Boomer and Millennial generations (as well as Generations X and Y) and Benedetto applies his experience in the US intelligence community to the principles of operating a media business as well as commenting on the nation’s present positioning in the struggle against international terrorism.  To listen to the entire podcast please click here or click on the “Up Close and Far Out” player box located on every page of Talkers.com and RadioInfo.com.

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gentrybillAlpha Media Names Bill Gentry Louisville Market Manager.  Resurfacing as SVP and market manager for the Alpha Media Louisville station group is Bill Gentry.  He was most recently regional market manager for iHeartMedia, overseeing the Louisville and Lexington markets until September of 2015.  In Louisville, Alpha operates CHR WDJX, classic hip hop and R&B WGHL, hip hop WGZB, urban contemporary WMJM, and hot AC WXMA.  Alpha EVP Bill McElveen says, “We’re delighted to have Bill Gentry lead our great Alpha Media team in Louisville.  Bill has been a dynamic player on the Louisville media landscape for many years and we are excited about putting his knowledge of the market and his long-standing client relationships to work for the Alpha Team and for our valued Louisville community partners.”

RadioInfo Career Moves.  Two promotions take place in iHeartMedia’s Central Texas Region (Austin and San Antonio markets) where the company announces Callie Hoch is now regional digital program director and Travis Hill is director of marketing and promotions.  Hoch – most recently director of marketing for the San Antonio cluster – assumes digital strategy responsibility for the region’s 15 brands – including their websites, social media, mobile and online presence.  Hill – who was previously director of marketing and promotions for therazor company’s Austin cluster – adds San Antonio to his watch…..Classic rock KLPX, Tucson APD and overnight jock Rey De Carlo, a.k.a. Razor, adds APD duties for alternative KFMA “Rock 102.1” at the Arizona Lotus-owned station…..John Mingione, a.k.a. John On Line, announces his exit from Cox Media Group’s Long Island stations where he was serving as director of digital media for CHR WBLI, Patchogue and classic rock WBAB, Babylon.

McVaySpecForc16NASH Country Music Festival Benefits Special Forces Charitable Trust.  Over the holiday weekend, Cumulus Media and Westwood One presented a country music festival at Fontanel Nashville to benefit The Special Forces Charitable Trust.  The organization provides sustainable and meaningful financial support, programs and services to the United States Army Special Forces (Green Beret) community and their Families.  Performing were Big & Rich, Thompson Square, Parmalee, Chuck Wicks (co-host of America’s Morning Show and MC of Camp NASH), RaeLynn, and Breaking Southwest.  Pictured here are (from l-r): Mike McVay, Cumulus/Westwood One SVP content & programming; Blair Garner, “America’s Morning Show” co-host; Kelly Ford, “AMS” co-host; Tasha Blasi, SVP sales & marketing for NASH; and Chuck Wicks.

Friday, May 27, 2016

| May 27, 2016

dimick, johnCumulus Media Appoints Dimick Vice President/Programming Operations. Former Lincoln Financial Media senior vice president of programming and operations John Dimick joins Cumulus Media as vice president of programming operations. Cumulus Media senior vice president of content and programming Mike McVay remarks,Cumulus “John Dimick brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to this position. He joins Doug Hamand and Greg Frey as a [vice president of programming operations]. Those three, along with our format specialists and analysts, will provide even more tools to our managers and program directors to employ when programming their stations.” Dimick – who begins his new assignment next Wednesday (6/1) – jokes, “I am very happy that Mike McVay would not buy my ‘retirement from the industry’ thinking. The new senior management team at Cumulus is building [something that] is extraordinary and compelling. I am flattered [corporate believes] I can help advance the growth and success of the stations and the remarkable Cumulus platform. Joining the corporate programming team with people like Greg Frey, Doug Hamand and the other pros at Cumulus is very exciting.” For the past 11 months, Dimick was franchise owner of the Dimick Automotive Group. In addition to Lincoln Financial stations in San Diego, Dimick has programmed Emmis rhythmic CHR WQHT “Hot 97,” New York; KPLZ, Seattle; KISN, Salt Lake City; and WNCI, Columbus.

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schneekloth, brianSchneekloth Named GSM at WMJX. Following a 12-year run as vice president and manager of the Katz Radio Group, Brian Schneekloth becomes general sales manager of Greater Media Boston adult contemporary WMJX “Magic 106.7.” Greater MediaWMJX Boston vice president and market manager Mary Menna comments, “Brian’s exceptional client relationships and expertise in the radio and digital space make him the perfect addition to the Greater Media Boston family.” In addition to his Katz Radio Group management role, Schneekloth was director of sales for Katz Digital. Prior to that, he held sales management roles at CBS Radio Boston’s WBCN and classic rock WZLX. Among persons 6+ in Nielsen Audio‘s April 2016 PPM report, “Magic 106.7” finished second (7.2), eight-tenths behind co-owned classic hits-oldies WROR (8.0, 6+).

marshall, robin“The Diary of a Sugar Mom- Don’t Tell the Kids”“Sugar Mom” Marshall’s Meaningful Marking. While “voiceover artist,” “audio producer,” and “author” are apt summations of Robin Marshall, the most important depiction of the Dallas-based talent is that she is a one-year cancer survivor. Marshall will release recordings of “Lemons to Lemonade” blogs, which she wrote while undergoing aggressive ovarian cancer treatment. Those episodes will be part of the “Sugar Mom” podcast, leading up to National Cancer Survivors Day next Sunday (6/5). Starting next month, Marshall will distribute her audio book “The Diary of a Sugar Mom: Don’t Tell the Kids” free via her “Sugar Mom” podcast on various podcast directories. Marshall comments, “I want women and men who subscribe to my podcast and/or visit my Facebook page to understand what the concept of a ‘Sugar Mom’ really is, and more importantly, what it is not. If you can try one new thing a day, you are headed towards becoming who you used to be and now want to be again.” The “Sugar Mom” podcast releases new episodes Tuesdays and Thursdays. Marshall spent 20 years as a New York City on-air talent and she is the imaging voice for several radio stations. Since being diagnosed with stage three ovarian cancer, she underwent weekly chemotherapy treatments in Dallas; she is in full remission.

alan, codymccoy, nealAlan, McCoy in Special Salute. Country artist Neal McCoy and Premiere Radio Networks’ personality Cody Alan  treated more than 200 (Phoenix area) Luke Air Force Base service members and their families to an evening of music and conversation last night (Thursday, 5/26). The event marked the first stop on this year’s “Super 8 Salutes” tour, a multi-city effort created by Super 8 and Premiere Networks, providing access to events and concerts with country music stars. McCoy states, “I am always excited to spend time with the women and men of our military and their families. Whether it is entertaining them overseas or here at home, it is the highlight of my year. I thank Super 8 and my buddy, Cody Alan, for inviting me to join in this salute to the hard work they do every day at Luke Air Force Base.” Thursday night’s Alan-hosted function included a “Q & A” with McCoy, followed by an acoustic set and a meet and greet. “Super 8 Salutes” is in its second year and will make three stops; last year the tour included visits to Fort Campbell, Kentucky and West Springfield, Massachusetts. Alan is host/executive producer of “CMT After MidNite,” “CMT Radio Live,” and “CMT All Access.” Included among McCoy’s 15 albums are three that went platinum and one gold.

bentley, dierksTo Tell the Truth – It’s Dierks Bentley. As part of a promotional tour for his album “Black,” which comes out today (Friday, 5/27), Dierks Bentley visited “America’s Morning Show.” During yesterday’s visit (Thursday, 5/26), the country singer agreed to enter the program’s “TruthBooth,” where he was given a sealed envelope with questions that he swore to answer honestly.

Nielsen LogoMillennials Account For 66.5 Million Radio Users. This is not a homogeneous group with a common set of beliefs, interests, and behaviors; ungrouping millennials can help advertisers, agencies, and radio stations understand each group more closely. Nielsen‘s Q4 2015 “Total Audience Report” separated 18-34s into three groups: “Dependent Adults” (those living in someone else’s home); “On Their Own” millennials (those living in their own home without children); and “Starting a Family” millennials” (those living in their own home with children). The data shows 97% of 18-year-olds live in someone else’s home. By their mid-30s, 90% of millennials live in their own home, and more than half have children. Radio is an important part of a millennial’s life and they listen to it in many ways. In the average week, radio reaches about 92% of “Starting a Family” millennials; 90% of “Dependent Adult” millennials”; and 89% of “On Their Own” millennials. CHR is the number one format for all three groups, but “Dependent Adult” millennials, who tend to live at home with their parents or another adult, listen to more classic rock, classic hits-oldies, and urban AC than the overall millennial group. “Dependent Adult” millennials listen to these formats because they are exposed to them by older adults in the home. “On Their Own” millennials are the least ethnically diverse group and they show a preference for non-ethnic formats like hot AC and alternative. They also listen to sports stations more than the other two millennial groups. Radio reaches 90% of all 18-34 African-Americans each week with urban AC the top format among this group. “Starting A Family” millennials include the highest percent of Hispanic and Spanish-speaking listeners. In this group, regional Mexican has the third-highest share of listening time. Overall, 16% of this group’s listening is spent with a Spanish language format. That is more than three times the amount of “On Their Own” millennials.

smaldone and jamesGetting Together with Smaldone. For almost 24 years, Valerie Smaldone was the mid-day talent at market dominant adult contemporary WLTW “Lite-FM,” New York. More recently, she has been hosting/producing a variety of projects. The latest for the imaging voice of CBS Radio New York all-newser WINS is “Hit Makers: Music Icons in Performance and Conversation”; Tommy James (“Tommy James & The Shondells“) was her first guest and he sang several of his hits. In addition, Smaldone interviewed him about his book “Me, The Mob, and the Music,” as well as his days with Roulette Records. For the past two years, Smaldone’s weekly, three-hour Envision Networks’ talk show “America Weekend with Valerie Smaldone & Friends” is heard in 15 markets.

KOIT-FMRadioInfo Career Moves. Effective next Tuesday (5/31), Entercom San Francisco rhythmic hot AC KRBQ “Q-102” mid-day talent “Freska” will transition to afternoon drive on adult contemporary sibling KOIT-FM “Better Music for a Better Workday.” Taking her place at “Q-102” is Billy Vidal, who is promoted from weekends. KOIT-FM program director Brent Carey comments, “Freska’s unique delivery, community relationships, and creative show ideas will build a strong connection for our listeners.” The changes come about as former KOIT-FM PM driver Brent Carey exits.

The PulseSirius XM’s “The Pulse” To Air “Live In The Vineyard” Concert Special. The three-hour feature will run this (Memorial Day) weekend. It was captured at the seventeenth installment of the “Live In The Vineyard” music festival in Napa Valley, California early last month (4/7-10) and will include acoustic performances by Andy Grammer, Ingrid Michaelson, Cold War Kids, Lukas Graham, Ben Rector, VineyardDaughtry, Zella Day, Tor Miller, Brendan James, Shawn Hook, The Strumbellas, AudioDamn!, Pentatonix and SafetySuit. SiriusXM “The Pulse” host Jim Ryan remarks, “It is an incredible weekend of wine, food, and ‘Pulse’ music that our listeners respond to in overwhelming numbers to try to attend the event twice a year. It is great to be able to bring the experience to listeners on the radio, especially for those that are not able to attend.” The special premieres tonight (Friday, 5/27) at 7:00 pm (ET) on channel 15 and it will rebroadcast tomorrow (Saturday, 5/28) and Sunday (5/29) at various times. Created eight years ago by Bobbii Jacobs and Claire Parr, “Live In The Vineyard” will take place again in November.

Beasley Media GroupBeasley Broadcast Group Board Declares Quarterly Cash Dividend. It is for $0.045 per share of its “Class A” and “Class B” common stock. The dividend is payable on July 8 to shareholders of record on June 30. While Beasley Broadcast Group intends to pay regular quarterly cash dividends for the foreseeable future, all subsequent dividends will be reviewed quarterly and declared by the board at its discretion.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

| May 26, 2016

johnnyblondieliveCumulus v Johnny and Blondie Gets Underway in Michigan.  Another non-compete case involving Cumulus Media is in the courtroom, this time in Michigan.  Cumulus is suing former WHNN, Saginaw, Michigan morning personalities Johnny Burke and Bonnie Belger-Holzhei, a.k.a. Blondie, alleging they violated the non-compete and non-solicitation clauses in their contracts after being fired by the station earlier this year.  As reported in MLive.com, this comes after the pair sued Cumulus for age discrimination.  Cumulus is asking the court to prevent the duo from continuing to host the internet show they launched shortly after leaving the station.  Interestingly, Cumulus is not after Burke for the non-compete violation since it would then have to pay six months of his $125,000 salary but is pursuing the non-compete matter with Belger-Holzhei as her salary was just $31,200.  What Cumulus really appears to want is the court to find that they have been going after Cumulus clients to sponsor their internet show and force them to stop.  Read the MLive story here.

RadioInfo Career Moves. At the Toledo operations of iHeartMedia, Scott Sands is promoted to SVP ofsandsscott programming for the station group.  Sands is the program director and afternoon drive host for news/talk WSPD.  He now has oversight of CHR WVKS, country WCKY, adult contemporary WRVF, rock WIOT and sports talk WCWA.  Sands assumes the role previously held by Nathan Reed who recently exited the company to join Cox Media Group’s hot AC KRAV, Tulsa “MIX 96.”…..Nate Mumford is leaving his director of digital operations position with Berkshire Broadcasting’s Danbury, Connecticut station group to join RCS where he’ll serve as engineering tech for the company’s GSelector.

RadioInfo Tidbits.  A re-branding takes place at iHeartMedia’s Louisville cluster.  Hot AC WLGX leaves behind the “100.5 MyFM” brand to become “100.5 Kiss FM.”…..In the Columbia, South Carolina market, Davis Broadcasting is shucking two stations.  First, triple A WWNU “92.1 The Palm” is being sold to Radio Training Network, Inc.  Also, the company is agreeing to transfer country WWNQ “94.3 FM The Dude” to Midlands Media Group…..Kudos to Columbus Radio Group for being named a 2016 Top Workplace by Columbus C.E.O. Magazine.  The honor is the result of an employee feedback survey administered by WorkplaceDynamics, LLC, a research firm that specializes in organizational health and workplace improvement.  Several aspects of workplace culture were measured, including alignment, execution, and connection, just to name a few.  Columbus Radio Group operates adult contemporary WSNY “Sunny 95,” classic rock WLVQ “Qfm96,” hot AC WVMX “Mix 107.9,” and classic hits simulcast WNND/WNNP “RewindwpljSummerKick16 103.5/104.3.”…..Cumulus Media hot AC WPLJ, New York marks the start of the summer season tomorrow (5/27) with its annual “95.5 ‘PLJ Summer Kick-Off at Jenkinson’s Pavilion in Point Pleasant, New Jersey from 6:00 am to 10:00 am.  “Todd & Jayde in the Morning” will broadcast live with performances by the Goo Goo Dolls, MAGIC!, American Authors and Ruth B.  WPLJ has hosted this legendary event for more than 20 years featuring activities on site and the morning concert.  WABC-TV senior meteorologist Bill Evans will also be onsite throughout the morning, reporting the weather live from the Jersey Shore.  The event is free and open to the public.

gracies16grouppic41st Annual Gracie Awards Held in Beverly Hills.  The annual Gracie Awards took place last night at the Beverly Wilshire in Beverly Hills.  Awards were handed out in both television and radio categories.  Some of the women working in commercial radio who were honored include: Loren Raye, co-host of “The TJ Show” on WODS, Boston “103.3 AMP Radio”; Marla Diamond, reporter/correspondent with WCBS, New York; Nina Hajian, co-host “Shoboy in the Morning” at WBMP, New York “92.3 AMP Radio”; Rita Cosby, WABC, New York; Joan Hamburg, WABC, New York; Felicia Middlebrooks, WBBM, Chicago; Suzyn Waldman, WFAN, New York; and Jane Tillman Irving, WCBS, New York.  See the entire list of winners here.  Pictured above is the Alliance for Women in Media board at last night’s awards ceremony.  They are: (l-r, front) Kristen Welch, AWM/F chair, SVP, Global Content Operations, Discovery Communications; Christine Travaglini, AWM/F treasurer-elect, president, Christal Radio; Karla Ballard Williams, AWM/F director and Gracies chair, founder and chief executive, Ying Bank; Josie Thomas, AWM director, EVP and chief diversity and inclusion officer, CBS Corporation; Heather Cohen, AWM/F director and Gracies chair, EVP, The Weiss Agency; Annie Howell, AWM/F director and Gracies chair, founder & co-president, The Punch Point Group. Back row: Sarah Foss, AWM/F chair-elect, vice president, product management, media, Imagine Communications; Kimberly Maki, AWM/F director, Bright House Networks, corporate vice president, Corporate Communications; Keisha Sutton-James, AWM/F treasurer, vice president, ICBC Broadcast Holdings.  Photo: Hamilton Photography

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

| May 25, 2016

popesummerDuane Doobie Jr.’s Music Picks of the Week.  RadioInfo’s hard-working co-music editor, Duane Doobie Jr., backed by a growing team of information-contributing researchers and golden-eared, trench broadcasters, including this week: on-air personality Bayley Brown from KHUM, Humboldt County, California; Internet sensation The Iceman; and Bill Phipps, the golden-eared afternoon personality at WSIG, Mt. Jackson, Virginia “Real Country 96.9” provide 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, and country.  This week’s selection posted today (5/25) includes such names as: Bitter’s Kiss, One Republic, Justin Timberlake, The Tragically Hip, Lukas Graham, The Dirty Heads, Brett Eldredge, Leslie Cours Mather, Cole Swindell, among others. To check out this valuable information, please click here.

RadioInfo Career Moves.  Marketing pro Dayne Damme is named marketing director for Entercom’s Austindammedayne station group that includes adult contemporary KKMJ “Majic 95.5,” hot AC KAMX, “Mix 94.7,” urban AC KKMJ-HD3 “96.3 RnB,” and news/talk KJCE “Talk Radio 1370.”  Damme moves to Texas from Entercom’s Sacramento cluster where he held a similar position…..The WHEB, Portsmouth, New kretschmargregHampshire-based “Greg & The Morning Buzz” show – with Greg Kretschmar – joins the Radio Button Network for national distribution.  The company was formed for the purpose of syndication by the principals of the “Ace & TJ Show.”…..At Pamal Broadcasting’s hot AC WKBE, Corinth, New York “100.3 The Point” (Glens Falls market), Pete Kelly takes over the morning drive slot after Justin Mallow exited to CRS Radio Holdings’ adult hits WHGM-AM/W284BE “The Point” in Havre de Grace, Maryland.  Kelly previously served with Saranac Lake Radio’s hot AC WYZY, Saranac, New York “Y106.3.”

RadioInfo Tidbits.  The weekly, syndicated “Sammy Hagar’s Top Rock Countdown” is now being representedhagarshow in both sales and networking of the show by United Stations Radio Networks.  The year-old show had been produced by Envisage Radio Group with the show being repped by USRN…..The Siga Broadcasting-owned signal KGBC, Galveston, Texas is no longer airing programming from China Radio International.  The station is now airing programming from BizTalkRadio…..SiriusXM is bringing The Strokes lead singer Julian Casablancas aboard to host a monthly show titled fullmetaljackie“Culture Void.”  Casablancas is also singer for his band Julian Casablancas+The Voidz and is founder of Cult Records.  He says, “I’m excited to have an hour to get weird on a big platform.”….. The Envision Networks-syndicated “Full Metal Jackie Radio” – featuring Jackie Kajzer – is now being heard on Sun Broadcasting’s WXNX, Fort Myers.  Envision says that “‘93X New Rock’ broadcasting ‘Full Metal Jackie’ every weekend, the station joins over 350 affiliates on the Envision Rock Network.

nextradio logoNextRadio: Interactive Experience Results in More Tune-Ins.  Research from NextRadio indicates that stations providing a “more visually appealing and interactive in-app experience” realize more listener tune-ins and more time spent with those stations.   NextRadio is the app that allows users to listen to free, over-the-air FM radio on their smartphones.  It reports that when comparing NextRadio usage in 2015 to 2016, radio stations creating enhanced in-app experiences – such as program schedules, social media interactions, contest entries or other visuals – experienced three times the growth in tune-ins when compared to those stations that only displayed a station logo or nothing at all.  Tune-ins refers to the number of times a unique listener listens to a FM radio station broadcast through the NextRadio mobile app.  NextRadio also says stations with enhanced content also saw 1.6 times the growth in time spent listening when compared to non-enhanced stations.

harrisonUpCloseFarOutsmallMichael Harrison Conducts Candid ‘Fireside Chat’ with Sean Hannity.  One of the highlights of last week’s TALKERS 2016: Bridging the Generations was a “fireside chat” conducted by Michael Harrison with Premiere Networks/Fox News Channel superstar Sean Hannity.  They tackled a variety of hot industry topics, including ratings in the digital era and Hannity’s ongoing critical assessment of the progress being made by Nielsen in providing accurate metrics reflecting talk radio’s numbers both on air and online.  They explore thehannity dynamic and volatile relationship between politics and talk radio – focusing on the Trump phenomenon.  Harrison asks Hannity to spill some behind-the-scenes gossip about the impact of this year’s presidential election on the relationships between his high-profile colleagues at Fox News Channel.  In addition, they discuss lowering the demos and make very positive predictions about the future of talk radio and talk media in general.  Hannity reveals that he has just re-signed contracts with both Premiere and Fox through 2020.  To listen to the entire conversation within the context of this week’s installment of the PodcastOne international hit “Up Close and Far Out with Michael Harrison,” please click here or click on the “Up Close and Far Out” player box in the right hand column on every page of Talkers.com and RadioInfo.com.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

| May 24, 2016

iheartmedia logo smalliHeartMedia Prevails in Suit Against Creditors.  As reported by Reuters, iHeartMedia Inc wins its suit against a group of creditors that wished to have the company declared in default on its debt obligations after transferring $500 million in Clear Channel Outdoor stock to a shell company called Broader Media Inc.  The trial lasted just over a week in Bexar County, Texas.  The court ruled the transfer does not violate the terms of its loans.

sotojoeJoe Soto to Replace Doug Banks on WVAZ, Chicago.  After the untimely death of syndicated urban talk radio star Doug Banks, Chicago personality Joe Soto has been hosting the 2:00 pm to 7:00 pm show.  Now, Soto is named permanent replacement for the late Banks on iHeartMedia’s urban AC WVAZ “V103.”  In a press release announcing the move, iHeartMedia director of urban programming Derrick Brown says, “I’m proud to have Joe Soto take the reins of afternoon drive on ‘V103.’  I’ve known Joe for over 25 years and worked with him on several occasions, most directly at ‘V103.’ for almost a decade.”  Soto – previously an afternoon host on “V103” – has been heard in evenings since the station first added Doug Banks to the lineup.

RadioInfo Career Moves.  Sacramento morning personality Erica Cobb is resigning her position as co-host ofcobberica the Todd Baker AM show at CBS RADIO hot AC KZZO, Sacramento to return to Denver for personal reasons.  Cobb worked in the Denver market co-hosting mornings on country KWOF, Denver “92.5 The Wolf.”  She says she looks forward to her next radio opportunity…..At the iHeartMedia cluster in San wadeshelleyDiego, Shelley Wade moves from the midday shift at CHR KSSX “95.7 Kiss FM” to sister hot AC KMYI, “Star 94.1.”  At KMYI she’ll host the 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm show and then voice entertainment features and updates from 4:00 pm to 8:00 pm…..Exiting Cumulus Media’s adult contemporary WTCB, Columbia, South Carolina “B106.7” is assistant program director and midday personality Tara Madison…..Programmer Jeff Andrews joins Mid-West Family Broadcasting’s rhythmic CHR KOSP, Springfield, Missouri “92.9 The Beat.”

Former KHKX, Midland-Odessa Personality Mike Lawrence Dies.  Longtime KHKX morning drive personality Mike Lawrence – half of the “Mike and Dana Show” with spouse Dana Carole – died unexpectedly on Saturday (5/21) in New Mexico.  The husband-and-wife team of Lawrence and Carole worked together for 25 years and are to be enshrined in the Country Radio Hall of Fame on June 22.  They retired from the business in 2014.

maederNakedDJRadio Pro Jo Maeder Publishes Novel Titled, NAKED DJ.  Former rock jock and talk show host Jo Maeder is publishing a novel set in the radio business titled, NAKED DJ (Vivant Press 2016).  The former “K-ROCK” New York air personality says of her novel, “NAKED DJ is an uncensored, all-access pass to one woman’s climb to the radio top.  Then her troubles really begin.  It’s also a great contemporary story.  How far do you go for your job?  And for love?”  Several years ago, Maeder wrote a best-selling memoir about her time caring for her aging mother titled, When I Married My Mother.  Now, she says she’s a full-time writer.  High-profile entertainment and media people quoted promoting the book include, musician Paul Shaffer, Premiere’s Delilah, and RadioInfo publisher Michael Harrison.  The audio version of the book is read by comic and impressionist Rachel Butera who is booked to appear on SiriusXM with Mader’s old “K-ROCK” co-worker Howard Stern in June.

Monday, May 23, 2016

| May 23, 2016

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kinosianmikePPM Analysis: Classic Rock.  RadioInfo managing editor Mike Kinosian presents the third of three analyses of the performances of stations airing gold-based formats, based on data from Nielsen Audio’s April PPM survey.  Previously, we published reports on the classic hits-oldies and adult hits formats.  One chart in this report measures 6+ ratings fluctuations from a year ago (April 2015) compared this year.  Hubbard Radio’s KSLX, Phoenix shot up two full shares during the year to jump from #8 in the market to #2.  Just two stations in PPM markets ranked #1 in their respective markets in April – both are Entercom-owned stations: KQMT, Denver and KSEG, Sacramento.  In this report you’ll also find a chart comparing the performances of classic rock stations, classic hits-oldies outlets and adult hits stations.  See Kinosian’s entire report here.

davisheatherHeather Davis Takes Middays at ‘NASH FM 103.3’ in Nashville.  Moving from Curtis Media’s country WQDR, Raleigh to Cumulus Media’s WKDF, Nashville “NASH FM 103.3” is air personality Heather Davis.  She’ll handle the midday shift.  Cumulus Nashville OM and company VP of country programming Charlie Cook says, “The minute I heard Heather’s audio I knew that she was the sound we need on WKDF.  I love her varied on-air experience and she is a social media monster, which is so important today.  We are looking forward to Heather joining radio’s best company in one of America’s best cities.”

donovanbrianDonovan Moves to iHeartMedia Tampa as Director of Digital.  Digital pro and air talent Brian “Munchie” Donovan re-locates within the iHeartMedia family from its Hartford cluster where he was director of digital and afternoon jock on CHR WKSS “Kiss 95.7” to the company’s Tampa station group where he will serve as director of digital.  iHeartMedia Tampa president Sam Nein says, “This is a welcome return to Tampa for Brian — he has ‘93.3 FLZ’ in his blood.  He has a proven track record across multiple cities, and we’re excited for Brian’s expertise to make a positive impact on our digital strategy.”  He assumes the role on July 1.

podcastone bFoo Fighters Guitarist Chris Shiflett Joins PodcastOne.  Los Angeles-based guitarist Chris Shiflett is launching a podcast titled “Walking The Floor” on the PodcastOne platform.  The show hosted by the longtime Foo Fighters guitarist “engages a wide range of musical guests with Shiflett’s in-depth, one-on-one interviews exploring their creative inspirations, struggles and successes.  With an insider perspective, ‘Walking The Floor’ features some of the biggest names in country, roots, and Americana music, as well as punk rockers, rock’n’rollers, writers, athletes and actors.”  Guests include Merle Haggard, Sturgill Simpson, Dwight Yoakam, Brad Paisley, Mike Ness and many more.  New episodes will be released every other Monday and this week’s edition features an extended interview with country singer Dierks Bentley and explores his history and new album, Black, due out this week.  PodcastOne founder and CEO Norm Pattiz says, “It’s great to have the talents of Chris now on PodcastOne.  The relationships he brings are an outgrowth of his many years as, quite literally, a ‘player’ in the music business.  It’s great to have him aboard.”

nationalradiohalloffameNational Radio Hall of Fame 2016 Nominees Announced.  Today, industry voting begins for the 2016 National Radio Hall of Fame inductees.  The 24 nominations in six categories were determined by the organization’s nominating committee.  Four of those categories will be voted on by a voting participant panel comprised of 400 industry professionals, while the other two will be voted on by the public.  Public voting commences June 20 for eight nominations for Music Format On-Air Personality and Spoken Word On-Air Personality.  National Radio Hall of Fame chairman Kraig Kitchin says, “The sheer depth of talent in our industry never ceases to amaze me.  After much discussion and deliberation, our nominating committee is very proud of this year’s class of nominees.  We’re all looking forward to seeing the voter outcome from our industry peers and listeners nationwide.”  Inductees will be announced July 11.  The induction ceremony will be held Thursday, November 17 at the Museum of Broadcast and Communications in downtown Chicago.   Nominees are: Longstanding Local/Regional (20 years or more): Jeff & Jer (Jeff Detrow & Jerry Cesak), San Diego; Charles Laquidara, Boston; Bobby O’Jay, Memphis; and Garland Robinette, New Orleans.  Active Local/Regional (10 years or more): Tom Barnard, Minneapolis; BJ & Migs (BJ Shea & Steve Migs), Seattle; Eric & Kathy (Eric Ferguson & Kathy Hart), Chicago; and Preston and Steve (Preston Elliot & Steve Morrison), Philadelphia.  Networks/Syndication (10 years or more): American Top 40 & On-Air With Ryan Seacrest, Ryan Seacrest; The Fabulous Sports Babe, Nanci Donnellan; The Steve Harvey Morning Show, Steve Harvey; and Wait, Wait…Don’t Tell Me!, Peter SagalLongstanding Network/Syndication (20 years or more): Delilah, Delilah; Gospel Traxx with Walt “Baby” Love, Walt “Baby” Love; The Jim Rome Show, Jim Rome; and The Kim Komando Show, Kim Komando.  The following are to be voted on by listeners. Music Format On-Air Personality: Sean “Hollywood” Hamilton; Tom Kent; The Kevin & Bean Show (Kevin Ryder & Gene Baxter); and Bob KingsleySpoken Word On-Air Personality: Diane Rehm; Mike Francesa and Chris Russo; Michael Savage; and Sean Hannity.

Friday, May 20, 2016

| May 20, 2016

RadioInfo Career Moves.  Adding program director duties for Entercom’s classic hits WMXJ, Pompano Beach, Florida “102.7 The Beach” is John O’Connell.  This is in addition to his current role as program director for alternative WSFS, Miami “104.3 The Shark.”…..At Zimmer Radio Group in Joplin, Missouri, Chad Elliot is promoted to market manager for the six-station group.  Elliot has been operations manager for the stations in addition to acting as host of news/talk KZRG’s “Morning Newswatch” program.  At the same time, the company ups Rob Meyer to operations manager and PD roles for KZRG and promotes Carol Daily to director of sales for the company from her previous national and regional sales manager role…..Cate Carrier moves from Manhattan Broadcasting’s rock KMKF, Manhattan, Kansas to Bahakel Communications’ alternative rock KRXP, Colorado Springs where she’s now midday personality and promotions director…..At Plymouth Rock Broadcasting’s adult contemporary WPLM, Plymouth, Massachusetts “Easy 99.1,” APD Scott Reiniche is promoted to program director.  That moves Kevin Cronin from PD/morning host to afternoon personality and Billy Teed is handling AM drive.

mcvaygarth16Garth Brooks Announces Ticket Sales for Yankee Stadium Concert.  Country legend Garth Brooks (right) is pictured here with Cumulus Media SVP of content and programming Mike McVay (left) at Yankee stadium during Tuesday’s press conference announcing tickets for his Yankee Stadium concert go on sale today (5/20).  The concert takes place on July 9 and this will be the first-ever country concert at Yankee Stadium.  Brooks announced the show last week on “America’s Morning Show.”

Thursday, May 19, 2016

| May 19, 2016

iheartmedia logo smalliHeartMedia Reports New Directors Added; Both with Chapter 11 Experience.  In a filing with the SEC, iHeartMedia notifies the commission that it is adding two seats to its board of directors and it is naming Frederic Brace and Charles Cremens to the board of directors.  The two are also named to the board of managers of iHeartMedia Capital.  Brace is also president and CEO of Midstates Petroleum.  Cremens is a Boston-based consultant with 30 years’ experience in restructuring public and private companies.  He was most recently president and CEO of Spirit Finance.  This certainly indicates the company is preparing for the possibility it will have to reorganize if it loses its current trial in Bexar County, Texas in which it is suing Benefit Street Partners LLC over creditors’ claims the company is in debt default.

kinosianmikePPM Analysis: Classic Hits-Oldies.  RadioInfo managing editor Mike Kinosian presents the second of three reviews of the performances of gold-based radio stations based on April 2016 PPM data from Nielsen Audio.  Yesterday, we published his report on adult hits.  Today, Kinosian takes a look at classic hits-oldies.  When it comes to market rank (based on 6+ numbers) there are six classic hits-oldies stations that ranked #1 in their respective markets in April.  Amazingly, 16 other classic hits-oldies stations ranked either #2 or #3 in their respective markets.  In this report, see graphics charting ratings fluctuations from last month to this, from April 2015 to April 2016, plus a chart comparing the performances of adult hits and classic hits-oldies outlets.  Read Kinosian’s entire report here.

RadioInfo Career Moves.  Beginning Tuesday, May 31, Justin Mallow assumes the morning drive duties on CRS Radio Holdings’ adult hits WHGM-AM/W284BE “The Point” in Havre de Grace, Maryland.   Mallow was most recently with 6 Johnson Road Licenses-owned WKBE, Corinth, New York (Glens Falls market)…..Entravision Communications names Don Daboub EVP of integrated marketing solutions, Mountain Region.  This is a promotion for Daboub who moves up from his SVP of integrated marketing solutions, Colorado.

hubbardradio logoHubbard Radio’s WTOP, Washington Partners with Creative Agency.  In an effort to improve the effectiveness of its clients’ marketing strategies, Hubbard Radio DC announces it is entering into a strategic partnership with Yamanairyamanair Creative for its WTOP-FM, WFED and WTOP.com.  WTOP VP and general manager Joel Oxley says, “Investing in the creative of our clients is now more critical than ever.  Yamanair Creative has a proven track record of results for local direct radio clients across the country for over a decade.  Their team of experts will handle not only some of our key client projects but also assist us with on-air imaging for our own brands.  We are stepping up our game which is exciting both for us and our clients.”  In a press release, Yamanair says its “creative sales tools have been used since 2008 by CBS RADIO, Saga Communications, Townsquare Media, Alpha Media, Cherry Creek Radio, Radio One, Connoisseur Media, and in select markets of Entercom Communications.”

garnerblairNashville16Blair Garner’s Latest ‘Nashville’ Cameo.  The photo here is a still from ABC TV’s hit show “Nashville.”  In this episode, “America’s Morning Show” host Blair Garner appears playing a country radio station DJ alongside series star Chris Carmack.  This was Garner’s fourth appearance on the television series.

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

| May 18, 2016

iheartmedia logo smalliHeartRadio’s Darren Davis Testifies Bankruptcy Threat Is ‘Disrupting’ Company’s Business.  The debt default trial underway in Texas pitting iHeartCommunications against Benefit Street Partners LLC is being covered by Bloomberg’s Laura Brubaker Calkins.  Yesterday’s star witness for iHeart was iHeartRadio president Darren Davis and in his testimony, he painted a picture of a company that was able to make its debt payments as it works to build adavisdarren global digital music service, that is, until the debt default was declared.  Calkins reports that Davis said as it stands now, the company’s line of credit has been reduced, its relationships with partners are strained, and it’s affecting iHeart’s ability to attract top, and in some cases, critical employees.  The upshot is that the debt default issue is hampering the company’s goal of building iHeartRadio into the global content service that it believes it can be.  The case stems from iHeartCommunications’ transfer of $500 million of Clear Channel Outdoor stock into the shell company Broader Media Inc.  iHeart says the transfer was legal, and Benefit Street Partners LL says it was not.  Read Calkins’ Bloomberg piece here.

vancefoyDuane Doobie Jr.’s Music Picks of the Week.  RadioInfo’s hard-working co-music editor, Duane Doobie Jr., backed by a growing team of information-contributing researchers and golden-eared, trench broadcasters, including this week: on-air personality Bayley Brown from KHUM, Humboldt County, California and Internet sensation The Iceman, provide 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, and country.  This week’s selection posted today (5/18) includes such names as: One Republic, Cody Vavrik, Justin Timberlake, Rhyan Besco, Foy Vance, Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Dirty Heads, Paul Simon, Blake Shelton, Gwen Stefani, Darius Rucker, Cole Swindell, Jerrod Niemann, Lee Brice, Scott Brantley, Leslie Cours Mather, among others. To check out this valuable information, please click here.

kinosianmikePPM Analysis: Adult Hits.  RadioInfo managing editor Mike Kinosian takes a look at the performances of gold-based radio stations based on data from the April 2016 PPM survey from Nielsen Audio.  The first format up is adult hits.  Kinosian tracks the 6+ performances of adult hits stations over the past six PPM surveys, notes ratings fluctuations from one year ago, and provides market rank information.  While just one adult hits station ranks #1 in its market (6+) – that being Emmis’ KBPA, Austin “BOB FM 103.5,” there are five other adult hits stations that rank in the top five in their respective markets.  Read Kinosian’s entire report here.

ulettjohnKSHE, St. Louis’ John Ulett to Celebrate 40th Anniversary with the Station.  Next Wednesday (5/25), Emmis rocker KSHE, St. Louis will celebrate the 40th anniversary of station morning personality John “U-Man” Ulett.  The bash will include a live broadcast from the legendary station’s original location in suburban Crestwood.  Ulett and KSHE morning show co-host Lauren “Lern” Elwell will be joined by fellow KSHE personalities Mark Klose and Joe “Mama” Mason.  Ulett says, “There is only one way that an air personality could stay at a music radio station for 40 years… the same format, stable ownership/management and getting up when the alarm clock goes off every morning.  I thank our listeners for being there the whole time.”  Ulett began his KSHE career in 1976 and is the station’s longest, continuously broadcasting air talent.  He is a member of the St. Louis Hall of Fame and has won several Missouri Broadcasters Association awards.  He’s been the PA announcer for the St. Louis Cardinals for 33 years and has been a cast member of “Cardinal Kids TV” for 10 years.

mahoneyrossRoss Mahoney Takes on PD, On-Air Roles at Alternative KXTE, Las Vegas.  Moving from modern rock WRMR in the Jacksonville/Wilmington, North Carolina market to CBS RADIO’s alternative KXTE, Las Vegas “X107.5” is Ross Mahoney.  He assumes the program director and afternoon drive roles, effective immediately.   CBS RADIO Las Vegas operations manager JB King says, “After a long, nationwide search, I am thrilled we have found Ross to take the lead at ‘X107.5.’  I am confident that his experience, great ideas, knowledge and passion for the format, will take ‘X107.5’ to new levels!”

boethinheatherCMG Names Heather Boethin to Gamut Sales Director Post.  Named to the director of sales south for Gamut is Cox Media Group sales pro Heather Boethin.  She’s based in Dallas and will oversee the territory of Atlanta, Dallas, and outlying areas.  She’ll also work closely with CoxReps Digital on “driving high-level strategic initiatives between the two companies.”  Gamut is a digital media services company owned by CMG.

More RadioInfo Career Moves.  Knoxville country outlet WIVK adds Sean “Mac” McNally to its on-air lineup asmcnallysean local host for the 7:00 pm to 12:00 midnight slot where he’ll enhance the “NASH Nights Live” programming by delivering local flavor, on-location broadcasts and commentary.  McNally was most recently morning show host and PD at Brewer Broadcasting’s country WPLZ, Chattanooga prior to its flip to classic hits…..In Colorado Springs, Adam Burnes exits iHeartMedia’s country KCCY, hot AC KVUU and rhythmic CHR KIBT where he was serving as program director…..Shawn Reed signs on with Signal Media to be the afternoon drive personality on country KHLR, Little Rock “106.7 The Ride.”

robinsonjeremyJPR Entertainment Launches Radio Show Service.  The new show service is the work of 20-year radio pro Jeremy Robinson via his new JPR Entertainment venture.  Robinson says the goal of his company is to “provide radio stations with their choice of a LIVE and local show hosted by me in real time or a local and entertaining voice tracked show full of content and local info important to the station and their listeners!  Our new North Dallas studios are equipped with Wide Orbit Radio Automation, 800 number, Vox Pro, phone lines, music master scheduling software and more.  Everything we need to provide PDs and stations a daypart of their choice as if we were down the hall from them.”  Robinson hosted “The Jeremy Show” for over 120 stations via ABC Radio Networks from 2008-2011.  He also hosted “Taste Of Country Nights with Jeremy” for all of Townsquare Media’s country stations.  See more at www.jeremyshow.com.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

| May 17, 2016

austinbradBrad Austin Named Corporate PD for Delmarva.  This promotion puts Brad Austin in charge of the programming of the company’s nine radio stations.  Austin is operations manager for Delmarva Broadcasting Company’s country WXCY, Wilmington, Delaware – a position he’ll continue to hold.  But he’s now also overseeing Wilmington stations hot AC WSTW, news/talk WDEL-AM/FM, and Gospel WFAI; Milford, Delaware classic hits WNCL, hot AC WAFL, sports talk WYUS, and news/talk WXDE; plus Salisbury-Ocean City, Maryland country WKTT, adult hits WICO, and classic hits WAVD.  The company says Austin will oversee the programming and promotions efforts on all stations and assist the staffs on a wide variety of issues involving local programming and community service.  Austin says, “I appreciate the confidence president Jeff Boden and WXCY general manager Bob Bloom have placed in me with the creation of this position.  Making local radio great, compelling and of service to our listeners is priority #1.  Oh – and we plan to have a hell of a lot of fun doing it!”

More RadioInfo Career Moves.  The syndicated Ace & TJ morning drive program has launched its own network – the Radio Button Network – and longtime show manager Adam Goodman is named president and CEO of the new firm.  They are calling the network a “radio personality resource service” whose mission is to assist radio talent that wants to improve its digital content and delivery, enter radio syndication, and develop new inventory.  Godman says, “Digital distribution now opens immediate revenue streams, brand growth and audience interaction the performers and the radio ownership they partner with will both love.”…..PodcastOne appoints radio pro Amy Lewis Schachter vice president, East Coast sales.  Schachter comes to PodcastOne from CBS after 20 years with the company.  She was named Digital Sales Person of the Year for CBS Radio NY in 2013.  At the same time, PodcastOne announces that Dana Senit is being promoted to vice president, West Coast sales.

RadioInfo Tidbits.  Hastings College is turning in the license for non-commercial alternative rock KFKX, Hastings, Nebraska to the FCC on June 30.  The college says it will continue programming the format via a web stream…..Westwood One is presenting “Westwood One Backstage at the Billboard Music Awards” this weekend.  On Saturday, WW1 will host a radio row from 12:00 noon to 4:00 pm PT from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas featuring 20-plus radio stations from across the country as well as the Adam Bomb show and theazaleaCBSLV16 Zach Sang show.  The event will also feature a performance by the California pop trio Bahari.  The awards show takes place Sunday evening at 8:00 pm ET and will air on ABC TV…..CBS RADIO’s SPF concert took place at Boulevard Pool at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas on Sunday evening (5/15) with performances from Iggy Azalea, Alessia Cara, Lukas Graham, Fifth Harmony, Kygo, and Mike Posner.   Prior to her set Azalea stopped to chat with CBS RADIO programmers, including SVP programming and music initiative Michael Martin, VP of programming Jeff Sottolano, and VP of music initiatives Chad Fitzsimmons, and they posed for the photo seen here.

nielsen logoContentious Nielsen vs Flinn Broadcasting Case Settled.  The hotly contested case in which Nielsen Audio was suing Memphis market operator Flinn Broadcasting for failure to pay for PPM ratings (and other services) and Flinn was countersuing, alleging inaccurateflinnlogo PPM surveys that adversely affected minority-patronized stations, has been settled.  This comes after a court-ordered attempt at settlement.  The terms of the pact are, of course, sealed.  Nielsen alleged Flinn owed almost $140,000 in PPM fees accrued over the course of eight months.  As long as the settlement is consummated within 30 days, the suits cannot be filed again.  It’s anyone’s guess how the settlement panned out but it’s a safe bet that Nielsen did not want to go to trial, if only because even more information about the inner workings of the PPM surveys would have been made public as part of the evidence.  As a result of the press this story received, the industry and the public already learned more about the fee structure for the service than it had known before.

harrisonUpCloseFarOutsmallMichael Harrison Flies with the Black Eagle, Joe Madison.  This week’s installment of the PodcastOne international hit “Up Close and Far Out with Michael Harrison” presents a fascinating conversation between the TALKERS/RadioInfo publisher and SiriusXM Satellite Radio “Urban View” channel morning host Joe Madison.  Listed at #8 on the TALKERS 2016 “Heavy Hundred,” Joe Madison is the highest-ranked African American news/talk show host inmadisonjoe the US radio industry.  Michael Harrison describes him as a “political, cultural and inspirational thought leader.”  The two discuss their 25-year friendship as well as race relations in America, Black Lives Matter, the 2016 presidential election, and the pros and cons of the dizzying advances in communications technology that we are all experiencing.  To listen to the entire podcast, please click here or click on the “Up Close and Far Out” player box located in the right-hand column of Talkers.com and RadioInfo.com.

glassiraIndiana Public Station and TAL Founder Ira Glass Disagree on Pandora Strategy.  A disagreement over Ira Glass’ decision to make “This American Life” available via Pandora has caused public station WBAA, West Lafayette, Indiana general manager Mike Savage to cancel his station’s affiliation with the program, effective in August.  Savage posted a criticism of the Pandora move on his LinkedIn page stating that it’s “inconsistent with the mission of public radio” – assuming because Pandora is a for-profit company.  He also writes, “I am all for improving the bottom line.  However, we as publicwbaa radio leaders must keep the balance between mission and bottom line in the forefront.  If all we wanted to do was grow the audience, we could change our formats to country music and accomplish that objective.  We must respect the mission.  Do the ends justify the means?  For a program that got its start on public radio and had some of the best on-air fundraising messages for listeners where Ira Glass says he is volunteering his time because he believes in the mission of public broadcasting, the move by ‘This American Life’ to Pandora is disingenuous at best.”  But Glass says TAL is not leaving public radio and its presence as a podcast before (and now on Pandora) is not hurting listening on public radio stations.  In fact, Glass says the numbers bear that out and that the influx of cash is allowing him to hire more staff and produce better and more far-reaching programming.  You can read his more detailed response in The Current here.  What this really shows is divergent broadcasting philosophies.  Many media observers would consider Savage’s take on the issue to be outdated, and would say Glass is successfully taking advantage of the platforms available to grow his program and his staff.

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