Category: Industry News
Parker Takes Over Mornings on ‘106.9 The Fox’ in Norfolk. At the Saga Communications station group in Norfolk, Virginia, Tim Parker slides over from his afternoon drive shift at sister station rock WNOR “FM 99” to the morning drive shift at classic rock WAFX “106.9 The Fox,” replacing Troy Brimmer. Parker also is the music director for WNOR and he will retain the position after making the on-air move. Cluster brand manager Mike Beck says, “Tim is one of the most experienced and versatile air personalities in the area with a skill set that is ideal for mornings on ‘The Fox.’ Tim will continue to be the MD for ‘FM99’ and he’ll be very involved with the Lunatic Luau – our annual music festival. We are very fortunate to have someone with this range and depth of talent.” Meanwhile, Stephen Hill takes over the afternoon show on WNOR until a permanent replacement is named.
More RadioInfo Career Moves. In the State College, Pennsylvania market, JC Burton is named VP of programming for the seven-station group operated under the Seven Mountains Media banner. Those stations are: AC WZWW, CHR WBHV, rock WEMR, classic hits WOWY, AC WLAK, AC WMRF, and news/talk WIEZ. Burton is also VP of programming for the four Frankfort, Kentucky stations the company operates under the Cap City Communications name.
Net Revenue Dips 5% for Beasley During Third Quarter. That figure is for continuing operations – the stations Beasley is keeping, excluding those slated to be sold to CBS. Due to the pending transaction between Beasley and CBS in which it’s trading five of its stations for 14 CBS signals, the company is required to report both continuing operations and discontinued operations. The net revenue from the combination of both continuing and discontinued operations was -5.9%. The company reports that the decline “primarily reflects lower advertising revenue at the Company’s Wilmington and Greenville-New Bern-Jacksonville market clusters which more than offset net revenue increases at the Company’s Las Vegas and Ft. Myers market clusters.” Company chairman and CEO George Beasley comments, “We don’t believe third quarter operating results from continuing operations reflect the strength, ratings and local relevance of our platform, as the lower level of reported net revenue from continuing operations is temporarily mismatched with certain expenses that will be better amortized across the Company’s larger revenue base once we complete the asset exchange with CBS Radio. We are very excited by the potential presented by the CBS transaction…The planned asset exchange with CBS Radio addresses these strategic objectives and upon completion, we will expand our owned and operated station base by nine stations increasing Beasley’s portfolio to 53, including 33 FM and 20 AM stations, in 12 markets with approximately 7.7 million weekly listeners. Importantly, we will add completed clusters in the Tampa and Charlotte markets which complement our already strong mid-Atlantic presence.”
Nielsen Q3 Revenue Up 14%. That’s on a constant-currency basis. The company reports that its core top-line growth (excluding the Arbitron and Harris acquisitions) was 3.4%. Nielsen CEO Mitch Barns says that increase was “driven by strong growth in Audience Measurement, double-digit growth in Ad Solutions and double-digit growth in the emerging markets, offset somewhat by anticipated softness in our Insights business in North America.” Barns adds that “Adjusted EBITDA was up nearly 20% or 22% on a constant-currency basis, reflecting the impact of our Arbitron acquisition as well as great execution by our operating units…And our free cash flow of $289 million was up 17% in the quarter versus the prior year.” During yesterday’s investors conference call, Barns discussed the integration of ratings systems for television and digital but only spoke of radio and digital ratings integration in passing, saying the company is “making progress” and it would keep the industry “posted.”
WILV, Chicago’s Megan Reed Battling Cancer. From a memo sent by Hubbard Radio SVP of programming Greg Solk to the staff at adult hits WILV “Chicago’s 100.3” comes the news that midday personality Megan Reed is battling cancer. The memo indicates that Reed’s doctors are calling her prognosis good. Reed sought medical attention for back pain that returned a diagnosis of breast cancer that had metastasized resulting in brain tumors. She’s been off the air for several weeks and is expected to miss more work as she undergoes treatment but she hopes to return to the air very soon.
Michael Harrison to Serve as Keynote Speaker at College Radio Conference. RadioInfo publisher Michael Harrison (pictured here) will deliver the keynote address at the 7th Annual Intercollegiate Broadcasting System East Coast Radio, Webcasting & Media Conference held tomorrow (10/25) at Simmons College in Boston. Harrison’s speech is titled “The Precarious Position of Audio-Only Media in the Age of Video Screens.” Harrison will discuss the psychological processes at play in the different ways in which the human brain processes various forms of sensory stimulation. According to Harrison, “I enjoy speaking at events with college broadcasters because they are still, shall we say, academically inclined and it gives me the opportunity to put on my media theorist hat and address some of the abstract concepts underlying general communications in our electronically accelerated relationships. I believe it is very important for people involved in anything having to do with the aurally based art forms of music and ‘radio’ to at least have an understanding of the mind’s different relationships with the eye and the ear.” Harrison also plans to include a serious discussion of the sensitive relationship between form and content in the art and science of media in his address. For more information about the one-day event, please click here.
Taylor Swift Album Promotion Moves into Overdrive at iHeartMedia. Yesterday, RadioInfo reported about the Taylor Swift “Secret Session” program set to air on digital platform iHeartRadio and iHeartMedia CHR stations. Now, the company announces even more appearances by Swift – sponsored by Diet Coke – on the company’s shows as she plugs the release of her new album 1989. Here’s a rundown of the country-turned-pop star’s scheduled appearances: She’ll guest host “American Top 40” this weekend and be featured on “Direct From Hollywood with Ryan Seacrest” on October 27. She will also appear as a special guest during “On with Mario Lopez” on October 29. On October 30, Swift is co-hosting “On Air with Ryan Seacrest” for the show’s entire four-hour broadcast live from New York City. iHeartMedia says this will be the first time an artist has co-hosted the entire radio program, as well as the first time the full show is presented by a single brand (Diet Coke). Diet Coke is hosting the Ultimate 1989 Fan Party LIVE from iHeartRadio’s NYC studios during the broadcast. Additionally, Swift will make appearances on other iHeartMedia shows including: Elvis Duran, “The Kane Show” and the Johnjay & Rich show. She’ll also appear on the “iHeartRadio Countdown with Romeo” and be a featured guest on “iHeartRadio Countdown with Mario Lopez,” “Weekend Top 30 with Hollywood Hamilton,” “Saturday Night Online Live with Romeo,” and on “Club Kane.”
WQBU Transitions to Regional Mexican. After just seven months, WQBU “Univision America New York” jettisons Spanish Talk in favor of regional Mexican as “92.7 FM Nueva York.” Univision’s “El Show de Raul Brindis” airs 6:00 am – 8:00 am and it is followed – until 1:00 pm – by “El Bueno, La Mala y El Feo.” Univision Radio president Jose Valle explains, “Our mission is to give audiences what they want and we heard them loud and clear. We are now bringing the best regional Mexican music, along with our top two morning shows from across the country to our audience in New York.” WQBU was the first FM to air the Univision America format. “Nueva York” is expected to target adults 18 – 49. Spanish contemporary WXNY “X-96.3″ and Spanish talk WADO are the company’s other two New York City stations. Among persons 6+ in Nielsen Audio‘s August and September monthly reports for New York City, Garden City-licensed WQBU registered a .1; it has a .1 as well in September’s Long Island monthly.
RadioInfo Career Moves. Joining Digity Media as director of revenue development is Jeffrey A. Schatz, most recently president of Total Marketing Solutions. Prior to his work there, Schatz served as vice president of sales for Gapwest Broadcasting…..At CBS RADIO’s Charlotte CHR outlet WNKS “Kiss 95.1,” Kelly Meyers exits the midday host position after her contract there was not renewed…..Alpha Media’s triple A KINK, Portland parts company with Marconi Bologna who’d joined Sheila Hamilton on the morning show in July. PD Chris Mays writes on KINK’s Facebook page that the pairing didn’t “strike the right chord” for many listeners.
Michael Harrison Tapped to Write Liner Notes for New GUNHILL ROAD album, “Every 40 Years.” RadioInfo publisher Michael Harrison, whose relationship with legendary seventies band GUNHILL ROAD goes back to 1971 when he played their records as one of his favorites on WNEW-FM, New York, has penned an essay titled “Back When My Hair Was Long” to be specifically used as liner notes on the trio’s new album, “Every 40 Years.” The album, which will be officially released the first week in November, marks the group’s first recorded project in more than four decades! The name of the essay is a play on the title of the group’s classic hit single, “Back When My Hair Was Short,” which still gets airplay on classic hits stations. Harrison states, “I was delighted at the opportunity to write these liner notes for a number of reasons. First and foremost, I have always loved this band – they represent so much of the fabulous, timeless music we played ‘back in the day’ that has unfortunately fallen through the cracks of changing times, but more so because of changing media. Now, they have a really fantastic new collection of 19 tracks! I also welcome the opportunity to talk a bit about my days as a jock on that amazingly, historic station – something I don’t have that much of an opportunity to do still being active on the front lines of today’s radio and music scene. When I hosted mornings at WNEW-FM — the home of broadcasting icons Scott Muni, Alison Steele and Jonathan Schwartz — I was one of four extremely young DJs in our early 20s working there – who in addition to myself included Richard Neer, Dennis Elsas and the late, great Pete Fornatale – and we all played the heck out of GUNHILL ROAD as well as a bunch of acts that made it to our smokin’ hot turntables simply because we thought they were good and our listeners would like them.” Harrison writes, “By today’s standards, we were eclectic to an extreme. However, back then, in our quest to play really good ‘progressive’ music, it seemed normal and an obvious way to reach our target audience. ‘Rock’ was not sonically specific. It was more of an attitude than any one singular sound. We even included hip comedy tracks…and it all fit.” To read the entire essay, please click here. The photo here was taken in the WNEW-FM air studio in 1971 and shows (from left to right): DJs Dennis Elsas, Michael Harrison, Richard Neer, and Pete Fornatale. Photo courtesy of DennisElsas.com.
WQRS, Olean, New York Now Airing ‘The Core.’ Western New York rock outlet WQRS, Olean adds the Envision Networks-syndicated “The Core” to its weekend program schedule. Program director Chris Russell says, “As we take ‘98 Rocks’ to the next level programming-wise, it made perfect sense to add “The Core” to our lineup. No one in the market delivers the type of rock we do, and this show delivers the goods!” Envision describes “The Core” as “a weekly two-hour program featuring the music and artists that thrived in the 90s.” The program is hosted by Meltdown and programmed by Steve Black from Detroit’s rock powerhouse WRIF. Envision says the program is one of the first nationally syndicated shows to follow the PPM format and is programmed with extended music plays and only two commercial breaks an hour.
WCSX, Detroit and Bob Seger Help Replace Firefighters’ Equipment. After the Detroit Fire Department’s Ladder Company 22 had its saws stolen while responding to a blaze, WCSX, Detroit morning team Jim O’Brien and Trudi Daniels decided to help replace the $2,000 tools. The Greater Media classic rock station says O’Brien and Daniels were so upset by the news that they reached out to Detroit native and friend Bob Seger to see if he would sign a guitar that they could auction off. Seger had a different plan. He offered to buy the replacement saws for the department. The saws in question are used to breach roofs to vent buildings during a fire.
Alterations at Alpha Media Richmond. In market #55, Alpha Media Richmond introduces Envision Networks’ Legends of Country “Hank” format on WLFV (93.1); moves contemporary country WWLB “The Wolf” from 93.1 to 98.9; and transitions oldies WBBT (107.3) to classic hits. Alpha Media executive vice president of programming Scott Mahalick states that, “In order to increase our competitive edge in Richmond, we needed to shake things up and turn up the heat. Not only will these improvements provide a more contemporary opportunity for revenue, they will give our listeners what they have been asking for.” Regarding the move of “The Wolf” to 98.9, market manager Paul Johnson comments, “This gives us full coverage in the Richmond metro, something we did not have on 93.1. In addition, the station will simulcast on 100.3 [WARV, licensed to Petersburg, Virginia], which covers the southern end of the market. This is a station that performs well where it is heard – it now has 100% penetration. [Along with WLFV's "Hank" on 93.1], we have a full country spectrum, and focused demo breakouts on each specific station; we think advertisers will welcome the choice. Even though [WBBT] was called ‘Big Oldies’, it really was a classic hits station already. We switched the position to ‘Richmond’s Greatest Hits,’ and evolved the music to a 1970s base.” Among persons 12+ in Nielsen Audio‘s summer 2014 book, WBBT registered a 2.6 (#12); WWLB 1.9 (#13); and WLFV 1.7 (#14). WBBT was down one-half share from spring 2014 and -.4 from a year ago (summer 2013); WWLB declined by six-tenths from spring and -.4 from a year ago; and WLFV was off by four-tenths compared to both spring 2014 and summer 2013.
Grande, Trainor Added to CMA Awards. Pop artists Ariana Grande and Meghan Trainor are now among those scheduled to perform at the 48th annual Country Music Awards. The twist will be that American Music Award “New Artist of the Year” Grande will be paired with CMA “Vocal Group of the Year” Little Big Town, while Trainor will do her smash “All About That Bass” with Miranda Lambert – who has a record-setting nine CMA nominations. Trainor actually has several country songwriting credits on her resume. For the seventh consecutive year, Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood will co-host the CMA event, which takes place in Nashville two weeks from tomorrow (Wednesday, 11/5). Others scheduled to perform are Jason Aldean, Dierks Bentley, Luke Bryan, Kenny Chesney, Eric Church, Florida Georgia Line, Lady Antebellum, Tim McGraw, Kacey Musgraves, Paisley, Blake Shelton, the Band Perry, Underwood and Keith Urban. Competing for “Entertainer of the Year” are Bryan, Lambert, Shelton, George Strait and Urban. ABC-TV will telecast the award show starting at 8:00 pm (ET).
RadioInfo Career Moves. After working in radio for 20 years with groups including Cox Media, CBS RADIO and most recently Hubbard Broadcasting, Doug Smith joins DMR/Interactive as vice president/marketing strategy…..Longtime Twin Falls, Idaho radio personality Kelly Klaas is retiring after a 45-year career that started on top 40 station KEEP (now KEZJ-AM). Klaas has been hosting a talk show on Townsquare Media’s news/talk KLIX since 2007…..Kansas City morning personality Mike Kennedy – currently hosting the wake-up show at Wilks Broadcasting-owned country outlet KBEQ “Q104” – is named to the Kansas Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame in a ceremony in Wichita on October 19.
Paul Shaffer Feature Added to KBKG, Jonesboro Programming. The daily feature starring Paul Shaffer and syndicated by Envision Networks is now heard on Shields-Adkins Broadcasting’s KBKG, Jonesboro, Arkansas. “Paul Shaffer’s 60-Second Rewind” is a vignette that features Shaffer’s stories about the hit-makers of the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s as well as pop culture updates and topical facts about songs, movies and TV shows from the era. KBKG program director Amanda Miller says, “We are very excited to have ‘Paul Shaffer’s 60-Second Rewind’ as a part of our morning show on ‘More Music 93.5 FM.’ Our listeners love trivia and entertainment news, especially pertaining to music and movies, and Paul is a perfect fit!”
CBS RADIO Las Vegas Stations Announce Holiday Concert Lineups. Two of the CBS RADIO O&Os in Las Vegas are hosting holiday concerts – hot AC KMXB “Mix 94.1” presents the annual “Mark and Mercedes’ Not So Silent Night” and alternative KXTE “X107.5” is presenting the two-night “Holiday Havoc.” The December 5 “Mark and Mercedes’ Not So Silent Night” features Train with special guests Better Than Ezra, Matt Nathanson and Andy Grammer. A portion of the proceeds will benefit Candlelighters Childhood Cancer Foundation of Nevada. The “X107.5” annual “Holiday Havoc” on December 11 will feature Imagine Dragons, Young the Giant and Brumby. Night two on Friday December 12 features Bush, The Airborne Toxic Event, Priory and Meg Myers. A portion of the proceeds will go to Las Vegas’ St. Jude’s Ranch for Children.
‘98.7 The Bull’ in Portland Snags Josh Turner for ‘Santa Jam.’ Country superstar Josh Turner is headlining the “Santa Jam Concert” presented by Alpha Media country outlet KUPL, Portland “98.7 The BULL.” The show is December 7 and will also feature Stoney Creek recording artist Parmalee and Jackson Michelson. Alpha Media EVP of programming Scott Mahalick says, “We couldn’t be more excited to have phenomenal country artists such as Josh Turner and Parmalee for the 2014 ‘Santa Jam.’ This energetic lineup is guaranteed to rock the Moda Center into the NEXT Holiday Season.”
Ne-Yo Visits Hollywood Hernandez. Motown recording artist Ne-Yo is pictured here in the Dallas studios of Westwood One’s adult urban format “The Touch” where he chatted on the air with host Hollywood Hernandez. The two talked about his performance at the Dallas House of Blues and his soon-to-be-released sixth studio album Non-Fiction.
“Music Industry Reunion New York” a Smash! After two successful Music Industry Reunions in Los Angeles over the past couple of years, organizer (and music industry promotional icon) Jon Scott responded to numerous requests and “took the party to New York.” The result was an extraordinary, emotion-packed event that drew more than 200 prominent music industry and radio friends to Manhattan’s Hill Country Barbecue this past Wednesday evening (10/15). Some of the folks that attended are retired giants of the business, some seasoned legends still vigorously playing an active role in the industry, and a number of young up-and-comers that showed up to share the good cheer as well as the priceless knowledge and wisdom packed into the room. In the words of Scott, “It was a non-stop hug-fest!” (Pictured here at right are music business legends Johnny Barbis, and Ron Alexenburg, right.) Throughout the weepy, huggy, kissy, happy, and yappy evening, a number of participants took to the stage to say a few words of tribute to and about each other and express the powerful sentiments that permeated the festivities. One of the speeches that resonated with the crowd big-time was delivered by Paul “Rap” Rappaport — former Columbia Records exec and current co-owner (with Judy Libow) of classic rock promotion and marketing firm, Classics Du Jour. (See story below for more details and full text of the speech.) Jon Scott sums it up as follows, telling RadioInfo, “We all gathered together to share the friendships and stories that developed during the incredible period of music that helped shape contemporary cultural history as we know it. The Music Industry Reunion committee that organized this with me is to be commended: Judy Libow, Roxy Myzal, Harvey Leeds, Steve Leeds, Jimmy Del Balzo, Jessie Scott, Wayne McManners, Peter Gidion, Greg Lee, and Ted Utz.” Scott says because of the success and numerous requests, another party is already on the drawing boards for 2015. Jon Scott can be emailed at email@example.com. (Pictured above, from left to right, are: Jon Scott, music business impresario George Cappelini, USRN exec Roxy Myzal and former WBCN, Boston GM Tony Berardini.)
Paul Rappaport Delivers Knock Out Speech at “Music Industry Reunion New York.” As indicated in the story above, a number of people made compelling speeches at last Wednesday evening’s (10/15) reunion of music and radio industry professionals in New York City (see story above) – one of the highlights being the impassioned words delivered by the ever-popular Paul Rappaport, former Columbia Records VP and current co-owner of promotion/marketing firm Classics du Jour. “Rap” tells RadioInfo, “I just wanted us all to remember a time when art and creativity mattered first, and the money mattered second. And not to forget a time when something like a magical segue could just stop everyone in their tracks in pure appreciation of the art of radio, and how it filled us with so much joy and shared understanding, all feeling as one.” To read the entire text of Rappaport’s address, please click here. Rappaport is pictured here at left with Jimmy Del Balzo (center) and Jerry Lembo (right).
iHeartMedia Ups Mark Adams to PD at KIOI, KYLD in San Francisco. This move brings Mark Adams south from his VP of programming post at iHeartMedia’s Portland station group to San Francisco to serve as program director for hot AC KIOI “Star 101.3” and CHR KYLD “WiLD 94.9.” Adams is taking over for Cat Collins who’s been elevated to the corporate National Programming Platforms and Strategic Services division. iHeartMedia San Francisco VP of programming Don Parker says, “I’m thrilled to have Mark return to the Bay area and lead these two legendary stations. His track record speaks for itself and his prior experience programming in San Francisco make him the ideal candidate to take the reins of ‘Star’ and ‘WiLD.’”
Entercom Names Lamadrid to VP Post. This is a newly created position at Entercom Communications and Carlos Lamadrid comes to the vice president of national sales and strategic partnerships post from his most recent position with TC Media where he was senior vice president. Entercom station group president Weezie Kramer says, “We are thrilled to have someone of Carlos’ experience join our team. His sales, business, and marketing acumen are market tested and will help us elevate the conversation with our customers.” Entercom says Lamadrid’s focus will be on “increasing revenue in the company’s national sales channel as well as developing integrated partnerships with leading national advertisers.”
Claudine Cazian Promoted to VP of Programming and Branded Entertainment for Premiere Networks. This moves up the person in charge of production for Premiere Networks programming including “On Air with Ryan Seacrest,” “American Top 40” and “Direct from Hollywood” to vice president of programming and branded entertainment for all Premiere products. Premiere EVP of programming Jennifer Leimgruber says Cazian will “work closely to develop and oversee entertainment programming and content, while identifying and developing opportunities to strengthen our brands, and support our partners.”
More RadioInfo Career Moves. At Radio One’s Cleveland hip hop signal WENZ “Z107.9,” Peter Parker is the new afternoon drive personality. Parker comes to Radio One from his most recent gig at CBS RADIO’s hip hop WPGC, Washington…..“Rolls” Royce Stevenson is promoted to APD at Entercom’s hip hop KDGS, Wichita “Power 93.5.” Stevenson is also afternoon drive personality and music director…..It’s a return to radio after a six –year absence for Julie Haskell Gade who is named general manager for Digity Media’s Lincoln, Nebraska cluster. The Lincoln Journal Star reports that Gade takes over for Joy Patten who stays with the company to serve as sales manager. Gade worked for the stations when they were owned by Three Eagles Communications.
SF Stations Implement Royal Playlist Adjustments. On the eve of MLB‘s 2014 “Fall Classic,” which will feature the San Francisco Giants against the Kansas City Royals, 17-year-old New Zealand-born singer Lorde finds herself in the middle of a bit of a baseball-related brouhaha. Lorde, of course, has the hit single “Royals,” a title one might imagine would not go over very well this week in the Bay Area. In fact, at least two San Francisco outlets – Entercom adult contemporary KOIT-FM “Better Music for a Better Workday” and Cumulus Media adult alternative KFOG – have decided to delete the song from their playlists for at least the duration of the series. KFOG’s tweeted statement indicates the station will be a “‘Royals’- free zone,” while KOIT-FM indicates the song “will be removed” until the series concludes. In an interview with NBC Bay Area, KFOG program director Jim Richards rhetorically asks, “Why send any positive vibes to Kansas City – why not give the song a rest? No one is going to get hurt over it.” Earlier this year, Lorde received an autographed jersey from Royals Hall of Famer George Brett and she maintains it is “one of the coolest things” she owns. The series gets underway tomorrow (Tuesday, 10/21) in Kansas City and we can’t help but wonder if Kansas City stations might retaliate by temporarily tinkering in a similar fashion with the music of a well-known Giants fan – Steve Perry.
Radio Express to Distribute Akon Show Globally. The weekly radio program “Stadium Live Radio,” produced by hip hop artist and producer Akon, is going to be distributed outside the U.S. by Burbank, California-based Radio Express. The company says, “‘Stadium Live’ connects radio audiences to the world of hit music through the personality and the voice of Akon. The show features the biggest charting and downloaded songs from the four corners of the world and exclusive remixes straight from the studio to the listener.”
Westwood One Producer Jaan McCoy Dies. Lifelong radio pro Jaan McCoy died at his studio in Dallas over the weekend. McCoy was a producer for Westwood One’s 24-hour Classic Hits format. McCoy started in radio at age 16 on WFBL, Syracuse. His radio adventure has taken him to gigs in the Hamilton/Toronto and Ottawa markets in Canada, then to Dallas for FM classic rock, rock hits on the ABC Radio Network, and 20 y ears as morning host of “The Breakfast Club,” with 10 of those years at WLGZ’s sister station KAAM. Most recently he was one of the principals in the ownership of country and classic hits stations in Greenville, Texas. He is survived by his wife and six children. David Felker, Westwood One’s classic hits program director, says, “Jaan loved radio and anything to do with music and programming. We’d talk for hours about it. He was dedicated, hard-working, always willing to be there to help out, and he always did it with a smile. Jaan was a true professional, an inspiration and a friend to us all. He’ll be missed.”
Alpha Flips Dayton Hot AC to Country. The Dayton market has a number of country stations – including a couple of signals that reach the market from nearby Cincinnati. But Alpha Media says none are playing the classic artists from the 80s, 90s and 2000s. So the company flips hot AC WCLI “Click 101.5” to “101.5 Hank FM” and it will include such artists as Garth Brooks, Brooks & Dunn, Alan Jackson, Reba McEntire, Shania Twain and George Strait. Alpha Media EVP of programming Scott Mahalick says, “The wise decision to add ‘Hank FM’ in Dayton becomes part of the foundation to help increase our value as a cluster in the market. The ‘Icons of Country’ format connects us to a passionate and underserved audience that continues to grow.” Program director Brad Waldo adds, “‘101.5 Hank FM’ is being launched because we miss the ‘golden era’ of country music and we know that a lot of people in Dayton do, too. There are some great stations in the area, just none that are playing what we play.”
Rock Makes Way for CHR on WDQX, Peoria. An Alpha Media rocker bites the dust as the company flips WDQX, Peoria “102.3 Max FM” to CHR as “Energy 102.3.” Peoria market vice president of programming Phil Becker says, “Over the last few months Alpha Media has shown our commitment to locally programmed top 40 stations. That focus is once again proven as we add WDQX to our top 40 roster. A new ‘Energy’ has come to Peoria and it’s fully charged!”
Jordan Tapped to Succeed Coyote as WAMZ PD. It is going to take (a) Michael Jordan to replace Coyote Calhoun. In this case, that would be iHeartMedia Lexington, Kentucky operations manager Michael Jordan, who is being given additional duties to program Louisville country sibling WAMZ. After 35 years with WAMZ, Calhoun will be departing the station at the end of this year. Regional programming manager Kelly Carls points out that, “Michael was born and raised in Kentucky. He has distinguished himself with outstanding success in Lexington with signature community events like the annual Fourth of July ‘Red, White and Boom’ festival. We are thrilled to see him bring that expertise to WAMZ.” Jordan states, “Coyote Calhoun built WAMZ into a legendary brand. We want to continue his legacy of great country music, concerts, and a tireless dedication to the community. I would like to thank Kelly Carls and iHeartMedia’s senior leadership for this amazing opportunity.” In addition to his new Louisville assignment, Jordan will continue as iHeartMedia Lexington’s OM and as program director of country WBUL “The Bull” there.
iHeartMedia Chicago Names Hudson LSM. At the Chicago cluster of iHeartMedia, Anne Hudson is appointed local sales manager for urban contemporary WGCI-FM, gospel WGRB “Inspiration 1390″ and urban AC WVAZ “V-103.” iHeartMedia Chicago vice president of sales Jason Courtemanche opines, “Anne Hudson will be an excellent addition to our local sales team. Anne’s strong sales background and passion for driving revenue made her a natural choice for our organization.” Hudson comments she is “looking forward to creating meaningful relationships with business and civic leaders in Chicago. Together with my new team, I am confident we will develop exciting new campaigns designed to achieve brand goals.” Her background includes management positions at Emmis Los Angeles rhythmic CHR KPWR “Power 106″ and iHeartMedia San Francisco urban contemporary KMEL.
Journal Broadcast Group Celebrates 50 Years of Country at KFDI, Wichita. Fifty years is a long time for a station to program the same format and that’s part of what Journal Broadcast Group is celebrating as it recognizes the 50th anniversary of country outlet KFDI, Wichita. The station is presenting “KFDI – Fifty Years and Counting,” a radio retrospective special that will air in two parts: the first hour at 7:00 pm on Sunday, October 19, and the second hour at 7:00 pm on Sunday, October 26. The program will feature archive audio and conversations with former KFDI on-air personalities from the past five decades, from “Ol’ Mike” Oatman to Cornbread to current personalities. Journal calls it a “neighborly look back at KFDI’s birth, how the station continues to serve Wichita today, and where KFDI is headed.” Journal Wichita OM Justin Case comments, “In a business known for frequent change, it is rare to have a station – any station – that has kept the same format for 50 years. This is a tribute to the support of the Wichita community.”
Classic Country Shifts to AM on JBG Wichita Signal. With the pending sale of KFTI, Wichita from Journal Broadcast Group to non-profit Envision Broadcast Group, JBG is adding the classic country format currently heard on KFTI to co-owned (and currently sports talk) KLIO at 1070 on the AM band, effective October 22. The format will simulcast on both KFTI and KLIO until Envision closes on the former. JBG Wichita VP/GM Beverlee Brannigan comments, “I am excited to return classic country to the legendary AM 1070 frequency in Wichita. That’s where KFDI was born. As we get ready to celebrate KFDI’s 50th birthday, it feels right to bring authentic country music and the KFTI call letters back to the AM band.”
Cumulus Announces ‘Winter Nash Bash’ in Nashville. It’s being called the inaugural “Winter Nash Bash” and is being held at the historic Ryman Auditorium on December 1. Cumulus Media’s Nashville country stations – WKDF “NASH FM 103.3” and WSM “95.5 NASH ICON” – are promoting the concert that will feature artists including: Clint Black, Parmalee and special guests to be announced. The event will be hosted by “America’s Morning Show” personalities Blair Garner, Terri Clark and Chuck Wicks. Fans attending are encouraged to bring an unwrapped toy or gift for a child or senior in need. All gifts will be donated to the Salvation Army’s Forgotten Angels program.
Scott Shannon’s True Oldies Finds Home on iHeartRadio. After a long relationship with Cumulus Media that ended last year, Scott Shannon finds a new digital platform for his True Oldies Channel on iHeartRadio. Shannon is now hosting mornings on CBS RADIO’s classic hits WCBS-FM, New York. The True Oldies Channel format had been syndicated by Westwood One since 2004 but that arrangement also ended after Shannon and Cumulus split. The channel is available on iHeartRadio effective today (10/17).
Pitbull Joins Lineup at the iHeartRadio Fiesta Latina. In addition to Pitbull, J. Balvin and Becky G are joining the lineup of performers for the first-ever iHeartRadio Fiesta Latina Presented by Sprint set for November 22 at The Forum in Los Angeles. As you can see iHeartMedia has Sprint on board as the name sponsor for this inaugural show. Other artists already signed on for the concert include: Ricky Martin, Roberto Tapia, Alejandra Guzmán, Prince Royce, La Original Banda El Limón with a special guest appearance by Voz A Voz, Daddy Yankee, Jesse & Joy and others.
Bob & Tom Debut Customized Football Songs. The first affiliate to get a Bob & Tom customized football song is Cumulus-owned classic rock WOFX, Cincinnati “Fox 92.5.” The Westwood One-syndicated morning show duo is creating the songs for affiliates in markets with college or pro football teams. The song for WOFX promotes the Bob & Tom show while getting listeners pumped for the next Bengals matchup. Sample the Cincinnati Bengals song, “Who Dey,”
Wallace Inducted into the Arizona Broadcasters Association Hall Of Fame. The ceremony for the “Class of 2014″ – which included Todd Wallace – was held yesterday (10/16). Wallace comments that he is “very proud of this A.B.A. honor. It is especially rewarding since I will be alongside so many of my good friends and colleagues who are past inductees.” In that category, Wallace specifically cites Chuck Blore, Gary Edens, W. Steven Martin, Al McCoy, Pat McMahon, Bill Phalen, Dave Pratt, Bobby Rich, Charlie Van Dyke, Mary Jo West, and Preston Westmoreland. Internationally recognized as the founding father of callout passive music research, the now semi-retired Wallace has been Phoenix-based since 1970 and he is the former program director of six different #1 Phoenix stations (KRUX, KRIZ, KUPD, KFYI, KTAR, and KOOL-FM). In addition, Wallace consulted the launch of Tucson’s KRQQ. Other stations he has consulted over the years include WPIX, New York; KIIS, Los Angeles; Dallas’ KKDA-FM, KHKS, KRNB, and KLIF; WKYS, Washington, DC; WSNI, Philadelphia; and WXKS-FM, Boston. Over 200 radio stations have used his MARS system. Last year, Wallace celebrated his 50th anniversary in radio.
Journal Broadcast Group and Radionomy Announce Debut of ‘#1 Hits Radio.’ At its breaking news and trending stories site NowTrending.com, Journal Broadcast Group has partnered with Radionomy to feature a hit music service called #1 Hits Radio. Journal says, “Now Trending Hits Radio focuses on the most popular hits, using downloads, shares and radio play data to compile the biggest songs in the world, all in one place.” JBG VP of interactive media Michael Gay adds, “Launching #1 Hits by NowTrending.com gives our audience a new way to hear more of their favorite songs with fewer commercials. We hope this becomes a favorite stream for fans to enjoy at home, at work or on the go through their smartphone.”
Perez Appointed VP/GM of Salem Miami. At the Salem Communications Miami cluster, Felix Perez is tapped to be vice president and general manager. Perez – who has nearly 23 years of experience in Spanish media – was most recently vice president and general manager of Univision New York. Salem radio division senior vice president Allen Power comments, “We are excited about having Felix at the helm in Miami. His years of leadership in media; his focus in Spanish radio; and his track record for exploiting new opportunities and solving problems make him uniquely qualified for this role.” Perez remarks, “Salem’s values and mission are a great match for my own personal business philosophy. The company’s record of delivering for all of its constituencies while holding true to its mission makes it unique.” Salem’s Miami cluster consists of Christian talk WHIM “The Answer”; Spanish Christian talk WKAT “Radio Luz”; Spanish variety WOCN “La Nueva”; and business talk WZAB “The Biz.”
More RadioInfo Career Moves. Former WABC and WPLJ, New York president and market manager and WOR, New York station manager Steve Borneman is named GM of Times-Shamrock’s Wilkes Barre-Scranton stations that include: classic rock WEZX “Rock 107,” alternative WFUZ “Fuzz 92.1” and sports talk WEJL “ESPN.”…..Julie K is named afternoon host at Cumulus Media’s KRMD, Shreveport “NASH FM 101.1.” Her arrival means PD James Anthony slides down to middays, taking over for John Fox who focuses on his duties as PD and morning host at sister CHR KQHN…..Nick D is the new program director at Golden Isles Broadcasting-owned adult contemporary WXMK “Magic 105.9” and country WRJY “104.1 The Wave.”
KXPZ, Las Cruces Adds ‘The Live Ride.’ The newest affiliate of Envision Networks’ “The Live Ride with Marty McFly” is Bravo Mic Communications-owned country outlet KXPZ, Las Cruces, New Mexico “99.5 The Rocket.” Envision says of the program, “‘The Live Ride with Marty McFly’ is a two-hour radio show hosted by 25-year country radio veteran Marty McFly, also host of Envision’s ‘The Country Download.’ ‘The Live Ride’ brings a weekly ‘concert’ to country radio featuring live performances of current and recent chart hits by today’s biggest acts.” Nashville insider McFly also provides up-to-date country news, concert information and artist interviews.
“This Was Christmas” Redefines Christmas Programming and Marketing – Mega-Special Available FREE to Stations. It seems the closer we get to Halloween, the closer we get to music stations trading in their established formats to try to beat others in their markets in a flip to playing Christmas songs. Stations from Boston to Los Angeles and Dallas to Minneapolis will all make the move, all playing basically the very same songs from Bing Crosby’s “I’ll be Home For Christmas” to the many remakes of “White Christmas” to Lou Monte’s “Dominick the Donkey.” The overall “holiday” sound of each station will be virtually the same, whether they’re broadcasting in New York City or the smallest of markets – that is, except for an oldies station in Brainerd, Minnesota whose programmers have taken holiday music and weaved it with everything from world events to old-time commercials, blockbuster films and hit TV shows to create a seasonal, successful and very profitable “This Was Christmas.” The major addition of “This Was Christmas” on KUAL-FM was the brainchild of BL Broadcasting’s managing partner Mike Boen and KBLB-FM morning host Dan Goshey. What they have created is hours of feature programming they spice into their Christmas music format. The reward for listeners is a journey back in time to favorite moments in their youth, and a new way for young and old radio listeners to connect to the station. As for KUAL-FM, the reward along with listener satisfaction comes in the form of insanely increased ad revenue, to the tune of over 110%. Now, as KUAL plans an additional 20 one-hour shows, taking the series from 1945 to 1999 with 55 hours of compelling radio, they believe it’s time to share that unique holiday programming with other radio stations around the nation, as well as the chance to ramp up holiday revenue. First of all, it is important to note that “This Was Christmas” is receiving rave reviews for both its music and information content from industry observers including Michael Harrison who states, “‘This Was Christmas’ is a ton of fabulous Christmas music within the setting of a great old fashioned radio ‘special’ – the kind of exquisitely written, masterfully performed and extensively produced, entertaining documentary that jumps out at the listener – as well as the advertisers – and says don’t miss this truly unique radio event!” Now, here’s the best part: As part of the rollout of what is planned to be a long-term marketing strategy for this property, Boen and BL Broadcasting are making this package available to stations around the country for the 2014 holiday season on a market-exclusive basis, absolutely free with no long-term commitment. Want to learn more? Click here.
Alpha Media’s ‘Live 95.5’ in Portland Gets Help from Internet Star for Charity Event. Tomorrow is the 14th annual “Truckload of Coats” charity event being presented by Alpha Media’s CHR KBFF, Portland “Live 95.5” and the station is getting some help from YouTube sensation Andrea Russett. The station and local charity Transition Projects are asking Portlanders to help fill two 50-foot semi-trucks with gently used coats, sweaters, hats, gloves, towels, socks and other winter supplies to benefit area homeless persons. KBFF program director Phil Becker says, “We believe there are times when making a difference is more important than making a buck. I am proud of our team’s live and local commitment toward helping families from our own community. In addition, we want to make this a memorable experience for everyone who donates. So this will be the first public appearance from our new morning show ‘Live with Bryan & Hannah’ as well as a guest appearance from YouTube star Andrea Russett.”
Duane Doobie’s Picks of the Week. RadioInfo’s hard-working music editor/director, Duane Doobie, backed by a growing team of information contributing researchers and golden-eared trench broadcasters, provides programmers with musical suggestions worthy of the attention of pro-active radio formats. You’ll be turned on to some of the exciting artists and music buzzing out there just over the horizon from the worlds of pop, rock, country and EDM. This week’s selection posted today (10/15) includes such names as: Taylor Swift, One Direction, Ed Sheeran, We Came As Romans, Me First and the Gimme Gimmes, Magic!, Lorde, Sheppard, Fergie, Red Wanting Blue, Annie Lennox, Reagan Browne, DEC 3, Rancid, Carrie Underwood, Moccasin Creek, Railers, Me and Mae, Penguin Prison, Maroon 5, Youngblood Hawke, Tove Styrke, Chainsmokers, SirenXX, and Lash among others. To check out this valuable information, please click here.
Halloran Hiked to PD at San Diego’s “91-X.” Two-year Local Media San Diego alternative XTRA “91-X” 2:00 pm – 6:00 pm on-air talent Mike Halloran is elevated to program director. Director of operations and programming Joe Lindsay comments that Halloran’s “knowledge of the brand, the city, and the music are a huge asset to the station. He is passionate and has a deep respect for ’91-X’ and the staff. I am looking forward to him leading the team to another level and exceeding the expectations of the audience.” Halloran – who retains his air-shift – remarks that he is “more than honored” at the promotion. He previously was music director and afternoon drive talent for similarly formatted Lincoln Financial Media San Diego’s KBZT “FM 94-9″ and previously programmed in Orange County (California) for hot AC KMXN “Cool 94.3.”
iHeartMedia Names Geary Sacramento Market President. Sixteen-year Entercom Sacramento VP/GM John Geary is back in the radio business after a brief retirement that started in 2013. Now, he’ll serve as market president for iHeartMedia Sacramento. Commenting on his new post, Geary says, “iHeartMedia is a company that thinks and delivers in a big way. Putting my retirement on hold wasn’t planned, but this is a compelling opportunity. I’m excited to be part of iHeartMedia and look forward to leading the Sacramento team.” iHeartMedia EVP of operations Hartley Adkins adds, “After former market president Dave Milner decided to take another career path, we are fortunate to bring someone to the Sacramento team who delivers tremendous market equity, and brings exemplary sales and programming experience. John’s leadership and extensive relationships will provide unparalleled results for our advertisers.”
More RadioInfo Career Moves. At iHeartMedia’s Raleigh country outlet WNCB “B 93.9,” midday personality Mimi Wheeler is named music director for the station…..At Sarkes Tarzian-owned hot AC WAJI, Fort Wayne “BEST FM 95.1,” Mandi Michaels is named midday personality. Michaels most recently was with Cumulus Media at hot AC WRWM, Indianapolis “i94.”
2014 CMA Award Winners Named. The winners of the 2014 CMA Broadcast awards have been announced. The four stations of the year are: Cox Media Group’s KKBQ, Houston (major market); Curtis Media Group’s WQDR, Raleigh-Durham (large market); iHeartMedia’s KXKT Omaha (medium market); and WUSY, Chattanooga (small market). In the talent categories, the winners are: Lon Helton, “Country Countdown USA,” Westwood One (national); “Laurie DeYoung Show” featuring Laurie DeYoung, Mark Williams, Jeff St. Pierre, and Claire Scattergood, WPOC, Baltimore (major market); “Chris Carr & Company” featuring Chris Carr, Jeff “Maverick” Bolen, and Jason Statt, WUBE, Cincinnati (large market); Buzz Jackson, KIIM, Tucson (medium market); and “Gator & The Styckman” featuring Gator Harrison, Greg “Styckman” Owens and “Cowboy” Kyle Croft, WUSY, Chattanooga (small market). The 48th Annual CMA Awards show will be televised on November 5 at 8:00 pm on ABC TV live from Nashville.
Troberman Named to New Corporate Marketing Post at iHeartMedia. The executive vice president and chief marketing officer position is a new one at iHeartMedia and hired to fill it is Gayle Troberman. She comes to the company from her most recent position with IPG Mediabrands where she was chief marketing and ideas officer. The company reports that in the new role, Troberman “will work with all of iHeartMedia, Inc.’s businesses to connect them more closely to consumers, helping integrate the company’s brands, products and platforms even more deeply into consumers’ daily lives. She will also bring her marketing expertise, creativity and experience to developing a marketing innovation agenda that fully leverages the company’s extensive range of content, experiences and technologies to bring brands together in new ways with consumers of all of the company’s businesses, including Clear Channel Outdoor.”
Village Voice Names Angie Martinez Best FM Personality in NYC. New York’s The Village Voice has published its 2014 Best Of Awards and taking the honors for Best FM Radio Personality is “Power 105” jock Angie Martinez. The Voice writes, “The Brooklyn-born radio personality started at ‘Hot 97’ as a teenage intern, and came up under the tutelage of Funkmaster Flex. Now a good quarter-century into her career, Martinez solidified her place as the unchallenged queen of New York radio when she left the ‘Hot 97’ nest in June, only to land at rival ‘Power 105,’ which means the Voice of New York can now be heard on airwaves in Miami.” Interestingly, for the paper’s Best Radio Station honor, it chose not an AM or FM signal but the internet station called Heritage Radio Network – a service that focuses almost exclusively on food and beverage-related programs. Read that entry here.
New Weekly Smooth Jazz Show Debuts. The new show is hosted by Allen Kepler and comes from The Smooth Jazz Network. “Smooth & New” is a weekly two-hour show that airs Sunday nights. Kepler says in a statement, “Since the 1980s, I have been programming this genre of music and selecting songs to play on the air. Over the past year, our programming team and I have noticed a huge influx of high-quality new music. So many talented musicians are writing and recording smooth jazz music, and we feel a responsibility to go deeper and get more of this wonderful new music on the radio.”
Toby Keith Visits ‘America’s Morning Show.’ According to the folks at Cumulus Media, it’s a star-studded week at the NASH Campus in Nashville as country artists are popping by all week long. Appearing on the program yesterday (10/14) with host Blair Garner (right) and co-host Terri Clark (left) was country superstar Toby Keith (center). Today, singer Lee Ann Womack is visiting the program and, later this week, Josh Turner and Lee Greenwood are expected to visit and appear on the “America’s Morning Show” program.
The Original Company Closes on WEJK, Booneville, Indiana. The station was purchased from Booneville Broadcasting Company for $350,000. Kalil & Co, was the exclusive broker for the transaction. In late August, the station was tweaked from its Jack FM format to a classic hits format so that it now plays songs from the 1960s through the early 1990s. The Original Company owns 12 other broadcast signals in Indiana and Illinois.
Cool Job Opportunity. WLNK, Charlotte “107.9 The LINK” is seeking an on-air personality. Greater Media Charlotte, a family-owned company, has a rare opening for a midday talent for “107.9 The LINK.” Duties include hosting a daily topical, compelling show, recording daily show promos, participating in station events as required by programming management, production, blogging and other tasks as assigned by the program director. The right candidate also must have a willingness to work with the sales staff as requested to provide revenue opportunities for the station. Applicant qualifications desired: The ideal candidate has experience hosting an air shift in radio; Experience in all aspects of broadcasting live from events and client locations; Must have a strong knowledge of the format; Should be able to develop current topics that are unique and will provide compelling content to listeners; Additionally, the candidate should have the ability to meet deadlines, work under pressure, and have an excellent attention to detail. Please send your cover letter and resume to WLNK program director Anthony Michaels at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
PPM Analysis: Country Market Comparisons. In a follow-up to last Friday’s overview, RadioInfo managing editor Mike Kinosian delves even further into Nielsen Audio September PPM country data to determine which markets are the format’s true (6+) leaders. Is it Nashville, as you might instantly believe, or perhaps a Texas market such as Dallas or Houston? Find out by clicking here for Mike Kinosian’s special feature ratings piece – but spoiler alert – it is neither Los Angeles nor New York City.
Houston’s KROI Becomes “Boom 92.1.” After jettisoning the all-news format on Houston’s KROI last week, Radio One followed up by teasing with a commercial-free, wall-to-wall Beyonce format. That culminated yesterday (10/13) at approximately 5:00 pm with the station’s actual full-time format of classic hip hop and utilization of the “Boom 92.1 FM” identity. Senior vice president of programming Jay Stevens declares that, “Radio One is known for firsts. This is ‘classic-throwback’ hip hop. You can only hear it all-day, every day on the ‘Boom.’” Operations manager Terri Thomas comments, “We could not be more excited about bringing classic hip hop back to listeners who grew up on the lyrics, beats, and rhythm of this genre of music.” Among persons 6+ in Houston’s latest (September 2014) Nielsen Audio PPM report, KROI ranks #23 with .9. The station reached an even 1.0-share this past January, February, March, and April. “Boom” will be paired with Radio One’s other Houston properties – urban AC KMJQ “Majic 102.1″ (6.7, tied for first in September) and rhythmic CHR KBXX “The Box” (5.6, fourth). Also in the competitive landscape is iHeartMedia urban contemporary KQBT “The Beat,” which ranks ninth (4.4) in September (6+).
CBS Radio DC Designates Davis Vice President of Programming. At CBS RADIO Washington, rhythmic CHR WPGC-FM and hot AC WIAD “Fresh FM” program director Steve Davis takes on additional duties as vice president of programming for the company’s stations in the nation’s capital. Senior vice president and market manager Steve Swenson points out that Davis joined CBS RADIO’s DC cluster four years ago and that he grew “Fresh FM” into “one of DC’s most successful stations. Within the last year, he also took over the programming helm of the iconic WPGC-FM. His diverse format experience and respected reputation – both in and outside our company – are perfect for leading Washington, DC’s programming team. Steve and I have worked very closely for several years. He has become my right-hand man to create ratings growth across our cluster of stations.” In addition to having held senior programming positions with Four Seasons Communications and Liberty Broadcasting, Davis was a consultant with Zapoleon Media Strategies; vice president of programming for NextMedia Group; and was an on-air talent at several stations, including WBBM-FM, Chicago and WZGC-FM, Atlanta.
Richards Rises to KMLE-KZON Operations Manager. In Phoenix, CBS RADIO boosts KMLE program director Tim Richards to operations manager of the country outlet, as well as co-owned CHR KZON “Live 101.5.” Richards remarks that he is “excited to be joining the ‘Live 101.5′ team. KZON program director Michael Coquia understands the ‘Live’ DNA and he has seven years of experience with this amazing brand. We have a world-class team here in Phoenix and I am looking forward to all the great accomplishments we will have in the coming months.” Richards – who continues to program KMLE “Country@107.9″ – joined the station last year. Before that, he held similar duties at crosstown iHeartMedia-owned CHR KZZP “Kiss-FM” and he was the show director for “Johnjay & Rich.” His other past credits include regional vice president of programming for iHeartMedia; program director of Chicago’s WKQX “Q-101″; assistant program director and music director of Boston’s WBMX “Mix 98.5″; PD of Detroit’s WKQI “Q-95.5″; and operations manager at Tucson’s KRQQ.
Westwood One Unveils Country Veteran’s Day Show. Hosted by Kix Brooks, the “Salute to our Military Veterans” show is designed to “honor all the men and women who serve, who have served, and those who sacrificed their lives to keep our nation safe.” This program, available to air between November 8 and 11, “will feature songs that symbolize the spirt of American pride and patriotism, like Zac Brown Band’s ‘Free,’ Lee Brice’s ‘I Drive Your Truck,’ Carrie Underwood’s ‘Just a Dream,’ Toby Keith’s ‘American Soldier’ and ‘Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue,’ Brooks & Dunn’s ‘Only in America,’ Tim McGraw’s ‘If You’re Reading This,’ Keith Urban’s ‘For You’ and more.”
‘Energy 103.7’ in San Diego Holds 13th Annual ‘AJ’s Kid’s Crane.’ The annual toys-for-kids promotion hosted by morning radio personalities AJ Machado and Hula Ramos takes place once again this year, and it features AJ living atop a 30-foot “crane” – rain or shine – with the goal of collecting 100,000 toys benefitting AJ’s Kids Fund for Rady Children’s Hospital San Diego. The station has partnered with IKEA and will use the furniture retailer’s parking lot for the promotion. Machado says, “It’s been incredible watching the community of San Diego grow this annual toy drive over the course of a dozen years. I have faith that we’ll have another great event benefitting the amazing patients at Rady Children’s Hospital.”
Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Nominees Released. Fifteen (15) artists have made the cut. They include The Paul Butterfield Blues Band; Chic; Green Day; Joan Jett & The Blackhearts; Kraftwerk; Marvelettes; N.W.A; Nine Inch Nails; Lou Reed; Smiths; Spinners; Sting; Stevie Ray Vaughn; War; and Bill Withers. This marks the ninth nomination for Chic, fourth for The Paul Butterfield Blues Band, and third time for N.W.A. While Sting (Police) and Lou Reed (Velvet Underground) are already in the hall as members of their groups, this represents their initial time as solo artist nominees. Fan voting is open until December 9 at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame website. The top five public-selected artists will comprise a fans’ ballot. It will be tallied along with other ballots by artists, journalists, and music industry figures to choose the 2015 inductees. The 30th annual induction ceremony will be held next April 18 at Cleveland’s Public Hall.
Nielsen Knew of TV Ratings Errors. In a story, which at the very least, is bound to raise some eyebrows in the radio industry, Nielsen last Friday (10/10) acknowledged that it had been reporting inaccurate television ratings for the last seven months. In a Friday conference call with reporters, however, Nielsen executives Pat McDonough and Steve Hasker downplayed viewer discrepancies, saying they fell between .1% – .25% of viewing totals. They repeatedly indicated incorrect ratings fell “well within the tolerance of statistical error.” Nielsen said it discovered a software flaw and traced it back to March. Inaccuracies, of course, could affect billions of advertising dollars based on the research company’s rating stats. WPP‘s GroupM is the world’s largest media buying group. A managing partner in charge of research there, Lyle Schwartz, tells The New York Times, “You look at Nielsen as the gold standard for currency. When you introduce these errors on systems that were working fine in the past, you start looking at the numbers a little bit closer to see if there is anything else occurring that we haven’t identified yet.” Nielsen execs say any changes in numbers or program rankings would be corrected when the company issues new TV ratings today (Monday, 10/13).
Idol Invited As KINK’s “Jingle Bell Jam” Headliner. Alpha Media Portland adult alternative KINK “Discover Music” is bringing in multiplatinum recording artist/two-time Grammy nominee Billy Idol to front its December 9 “Jingle Bell Jam” concert at the Roseland Theatre. Among Idol’s greatest hits are “Rebel Yell,” “White Wedding,” and “Cradle of Love.” Scheduled to be released one week from tomorrow (Tuesday, 10/21), Idol’s “Kings & Queens of the Underground” is the singer’s first studio album in nearly a decade. In addition to Idol, KINK’s December 9 concert will feature performances by Guster and Spanish Gold. Guster will release their first album in four years next January 13.
Meghan Trainor’s “All About That Bass” has more than 120 million YouTube views and her hit song is perched at a lofty #1 this week on the RadioInfo Pop Songs Chart. The 20-year-old Nantucket, Massachusetts native guests later tonight on Westwood One’s “NightsLive with Adam Bomb!” The hot artist is pictured (l-r) with Bomb in studio.
SAG-AFTRA’s White Gains Four-Year Extension. SAG-AFTRA national executive director David White received a four-year contract extension yesterday (Sunday, 10/12). White comments, “This job presents new challenges every day and I am thrilled to continue in my role at SAG-AFTRA. It is an honor to represent SAG-AFTRA members and I look forward to continuing the great work we have accomplished to date.” Along with union president Ken Howard, White was a lead negotiator on the recent primetime television and feature film deal. White was a candidate for a similar position with the National Basketball Association this spring.
Will Sony/ATV Music Publishing Cut Ties with ASCAP and BMI? According to a Richard Morgan-written story in yesterday’s (Sunday, 10/12) New York Post, Sony/ATV Music Publishing “plans to dump” BMI and ASCAP - the industry’s oldest and biggest performance-rights organizations – by the end of the year. Circumventing BMI and ASCAP would allow number one music publisher Sony/ATV to go it alone in the battle to boost digital royalties paid to songwriters and negotiate directly with Pandora, Spotify, and YouTube. Morgan writes that the industry’s second-leading music publisher – Universal Group Music Publishing – is also “anxious to enter into direct negotiations over digital rights.” Further quoting from Morgan’s Post article, “A withdrawal would saddle Sony/ATV with significant administrative responsibilities historically handled by BMI and ASCAP. It would likely cripple the licensing groups as well.” While Sony/ATV would not confirm that it is pulling out of the licensing groups, it acknowledged the option is on the table. A Sony/ATV spokesperson told The New York Post that calling it a done deal “would be very premature.” Sony/ATV Music Publishing’s catalog ranges from Beatles classics to Taylor Swift‘s hits. To read The entire New York post article, please click here.
CBS Radio Benefit Concert Adds Keys. Multi-award-winning artist Alicia Keys is joining the lineup for CBS Radio‘s second annual “We Can Survive” concert one week from Friday (10/24) at the Hollywood Bowl. For every ticket sold (the event is already sold-out), two dollars benefits Living Beyond Breast Cancer and Young Survival Coalition, organizations dedicated to supporting/educating those who have experienced breast cancer. CBS Radio senior vice president of strategic events and partnerships Amy Stevens comments, “What makes ‘We Can Survive’ so special is the camaraderie of the artists coming together to support an important cause, while delivering a truly unique experience for the audience. The addition of Alicia to the lineup makes an already great show even better with thousands of music fans witness to a memorable evening of performances.” CBS Radio Los Angeles CHR KAMP “Amp” morning drive talent (and host of NBC-TV‘s “The Voice” and “Last Call”) Carson Daly will host the concert. In addition to Keys, others scheduled to perform include Iggy Azalea, Ariana Grande, Lady Antebellum, Paramore, Sia, Gwen Stefani, Taylor Swift, and Pharrell Williams.
Aldean To Host All-Star “Thanksgiving Weekend Celebration.” The four-hour affair – featuring two-time Academy of Country Music “Male Vocalist of the Year” Jason Aldean – celebrates a country Thanksgiving. It is the latest in a series of Westwood One holiday music specials. In addition to Aldean – whose “Old Boots, New Dirt” album was released last Tuesday (10/7) – there will be music from Garth Brooks, Luke Bryan, Florida Georgia Line, Brad Paisley, and Blake Shelton. Other country artists including Dierks Bentley, Lady Antebellum, Miranda Lambert, Tim McGraw, and Keith Urban will discuss what they are grateful for this holiday. According to Westwood One, stations can air the special from (Thursday) November 27 through (Sunday) November 30, between 6:00 am – 12:00 midnight.
Music Industry Reunion Set for New York Coming up on Wednesday (10/15). The excitement is growing as a very cool music/radio industry social event – Music Industry Reunion, New York – coming up in the Big Apple is just two days away! The tremendous success of two recent Music Industry Reunions in Los Angeles has prompted organizer (and record industry legend) Jon Scott to schedule another, this time in New York City. Scott tells RadioInfo, “I’ve had numerous calls from music industry friends in New York who asked, “Why don’t you have a reunion in the Big Apple? It’s obvious that we as a music industry just don’t get together as much as we used to. So my answer is, let’s just do it. From early response I can tell it’s going to be an incredible event.” The event is basically informal where people from the music business past and present (along with related radio pros) can “join their colleagues to just laugh, tell some stories, give a hug to old friends and just hang with each other for one night.” It’s a no host bar and food event. The Music Industry Reunion is set for this Wednesday October 15th, at the Hill Country Barbecue Market beginning at 6:00 pm. The restaurant is located at 30 West 26th Street and only a handful of tickets remain, so hurry. This is an invitation-only party. For information, contact Jon Scott, email@example.com or Greg Lee, firstname.lastname@example.org. The New York Music Industry Reunion’s organizing committee includes Jon Scott, Greg Lee, Judy Libow, Roxy Myzal, Ted Utz, Wayne McManners, Harvey Leeds, Steve Leeds, Pete Gidion, Jim DelBalzo, and Jessie Scott.
Benztown Adds DeGregorio For Affiliate Sales. Among other duties, Nick DeGregorio will market Burbank-based Benztown’s radio imaging, production libraries, voiceover, and jingles products/services. He will report to vice president of sales and operations Masa Patterson, who comments, “I have known Nick for years and have always been impressed by what he brings to the table. He is a total pro and a perfect fit for our company. We are thrilled to welcome him to the Benztown team.” DeGregorio remarks that, “After being friends for years, the Benztown Brigade ‘did me a solid’ and gave me this great opportunity to join one of the most creative teams in media. I will now repay them by calling every program director in the country and leaving a message — because PDs never answer the phone.” DeGregorio previously worked for United Stations, Westwood One, Sun BGI, and the CBS Sports Radio Network.
Diabetes Fundraiser Attracts Mega-Stars. A multitude of music industry artists and dignitaries were among those present this past Saturday night (10/11) at Barbara Davis’ Mercedes-Benz Carousel of Hope Ball. The juvenile diabetes fundraiser – founded by Barbara and the late Marvin Davis – was held in Los Angeles at the international ballroom of the Beverly Hilton Hotel. Among those seated at the head table were Clive Davis, Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds, David Foster, Berry Gordy, Jimmy Jam, Quincy Jones, and Rod Stewart; legendary songwriter Diane Warren was prominently seated as well. Josh Groban sang three songs; Jennifer Hudson performed “Hallelujah,” as well as “And I’m Telling You”; and “Babyface” did a David Foster-led closing acoustic set. Other celebrities were also omnipresent from Jay Leno, Raquel Welch, “Magic” Johnson and Kareem Abdul- Jabbar to Barry Manilow, Johnny Mathis, Natalie Cole, and Larry King, who has ‘Type Two” diabetes. Johnson – a former superstar for the Los Angeles Lakers and currently part of the Los Angeles Dodgers’ ownership group – pointed out that he has been living with HIV the past 23 years so, “what you can do for people is so important.” Expressing his sorrow and disappointment that the Dodgers were eliminated from the National League playoffs, Johnson promised, “We will be better next season. I want to tell [the team's ace pitcher] Clayton Kershaw not to worry about a thing. He will bounce back and lead us to a World Series.” Located in Denver, the Barbara Davis Center for Diabetes treats 7,000 children and adults with diabetes. Since 1977, the Carousel of Hope Ball has raised approximately $75 million.
Azalea Tops “American Music Award” Nominees. Listed in six categories for the fan-voted American Music Awards is Australian recording artist Iggy Azalea. Five-time 2014 AMA nominees include John Legend, Katy Perry and Pharrell Williams. Other multiple-award nominees are Bastille, Beyoncé, Luke Bryan, Drake, Eminem, Imagine Dragons, Lorde, One Direction, OneRepublic and Sam Smith. The complete list of 2014 American Music Awards nominees are “Artist of the Year”: Iggy Azalea, Beyoncé, Luke Bryan, Eminem, Imagine Dragons, John Legend, Lorde, One Direction, Katy Perry, and Pharrell Williams. “New Artist of the Year” nominees are: 5 Seconds of Summer, Iggy Azalea, Bastille, Sam Smith, and Meghan Trainor. “Single of the Year” nominees are: Iggy Azalea featuring Charli XCX “Fancy”; John Legend “All of Me”; MAGIC! “Rude”; Katy Perry featuring Juicy J “Dark Horse”; and Pharrell Williams “Happy.” “Favorite Male Artist – Pop/Rock” nominees are: John Legend, Sam Smith, and Pharrell Williams. “Favorite Female Artist – Pop/Rock” nominees are Iggy Azalea, Lorde, and Katy Perry. “Favorite Band, Duo or Group – Pop/Rock” nominees are: Imagine Dragons, One Direction, and OneRepublic. “Favorite Album – Pop/Rock” nominees are Lorde “Pure Heroine,” One Direction “Midnight Memories,” and Katy Perry “Prism.” “Favorite Male Artist – Country” nominees are: Jason Aldean, Luke Bryan, and Blake Shelton. “Favorite Female Artist – Country” nominees are: Miranda Lambert, Kacey Musgraves, and Carrie Underwood. “Favorite Band, Duo or Group – Country” nominees are: Eli Young Band, Florida Georgia Line, and Lady Antebellum. “Favorite Album – Country” nominees are: Garth Brooks “Blame It On My Roots: Five Decades of Influences,” Eric Church “The Outsiders,” and Brantley Gilbert “Just As I Am.” “Favorite Artist – Rap/Hip-Hop” nominees are: Iggy Azalea, Drake, and Eminem. “Favorite Album – Rap/Hip-Hop” nominees are: Iggy Azalea “The New Classic,” Drake “Nothing Was The Same,” and Eminem “The Marshall Mathers LP 2.” “Favorite Male Artist – Soul/R&B” nominees are: Chris Brown, John Legend, and Pharrell Williams. “Favorite Female Artist – Soul/R&B” nominees are: Jhene Aiko, Beyoncé, and Mary J. Blige. “Favorite Album – Soul/R&B” nominees are Beyoncé “Beyoncé,” John Legend “Love in the Future,” and Pharrell Williams “G I R L.” “Favorite Artist – Alternative Rock” nominees are: Bastille, Imagine Dragons, and Lorde. “Favorite Artist – Adult Contemporary” nominees are: Sara Bareilles, OneRepublic, and Katy Perry. “Favorite Artist – Latin” nominees are: Marc Anthony, Enrique Iglesias, and Romeo Santos. “Favorite Artist – Contemporary Inspirational” nominees are: Casting Crowns, Hillsong United, and Newsboys. “Favorite Artist – Electronic Dance Music (EDM)” nominees are: Avicii, Calvin Harris, and Zedd. “Top Soundtrack” nominees are: “Frozen,” “The Fault In Our Stars” and “Guardians of the Galaxy: Awesome Mix, Volume 1.” ABC-TV will air the AMA ceremonies on (Sunday) November 23.
Indefinite Extension Proposed to LPTV Digital Deadline. The FCC last Friday (10/10) released a Third Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on the issue of analog low power and translator TV stations. The Commission suggests extending indefinitely the present September 1, 2015 deadline for those stations to switch to digital transmission. Broadening the cut-off date would give new life for Channel 6 analog television stations that basically function as FMs, given that channel 6 audio is receivable on FM (at 87.75). The docket – open for comment 30 days after publication in the Federal Register – proposes LPTV and translator channel-sharing in the manner being proposed for full-power digital stations; creation of a new digital-to-digital replacement translator service; and elimination of the analog tuner requirement.