Category: Opinions

A Salute to Family, Sex and Radio

| January 27, 2015

By Carolyn Fox
Whimsical Fox, LTD

fox carolynNEW YORK — Hey, I might not be towering genius but I do know a few things about life. There is nothing better in the world than great kids, sex and radio.

I’ve known many of you since my days as music director at WBRU, Providence. Ok, so we all have a little less hair where we want it and too many pounds of blubber where we don’t. You’re basically the same and so are the basic tenets of good radio.

Let me remind you of why I had over 50% of the available radio audience at any given time listening to me for over 20 years. I’m going keep this short because I know we all have the attention spans of gnats, which is why we ended up in this biz to begin with!

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Thoughts for the New Year

| January 5, 2015

By Walter Sabo
Sabo Media


sabowriterNEW YORK — The biggest trends and their impact that Sabo Media has been following in this challenging year of disruption:

1) The vital initiative of NextRadio activating the FM chip in your smartphone.  Jeff Smulyan’s endless effort is paying off.  There are two important lessons.  Radio can infiltrate new technological platforms effectively.  Secondly, a solo operator determined to make positive change, can!

2) Major advertisers, such as Coke, moving their money from prime time network TV shows such as American Idol to online video.  Sabo Media was the first company, in 2007, to identify online video stars and monetize their work. Our HITVIEWS division persuaded Pepsi, Timberland, US Government, TiVo, Sony, Panasonic and many others to put their products inside user-generated video content.  Not worthless pre-rolls or pop-ups but placement inside web-star shows. For radio this means that radio divisions within TV companies are becoming more important to total corporate financial health.

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The Spreading Digital Junkyard

| December 23, 2014

By Michael Harrison

mh2014SPRINGFIELD, MA — Is it just me?  Have you noticed lately that some of your favorite websites have become increasingly user-unfriendly?

Odds are your usual haunts in the newspaper, magazine, general entertainment and information arenas have become cluttered with terribly annoying pop up ads, videos that start playing loudly without invitation (sometimes more than one at a time) – and maddeningly confusing hodge-podges of editorial and commercial content laid out in such a manner as to make it almost impossible to follow an article without being sidetracked into a unwanted advertisement.  (Hmm, which one of these three arrows should I click?)

How about the emergence of that creepy entity known as the “sponsored” or “promoted” story  that innocently sits among the non-paid editorial content on so many of our distinguished bastions of journalism.

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A Somber Anniversary

| December 8, 2014

By Rob Stevens
One Stone Productions, Ltd.
studentrobbieNEW YORK — My name is Rob Stevens.  If you go to the website of my discography ( you’ll see that I’ve mixed, produced, and A&R’d much of the posthumously released John Lennon material.

It was and continues to be an honor to be chosen to participate, as I have, in these projects.

It speaks well of me professionally.

I truly wish there was never cause for it.

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Do Not Forget the Magic of the Music and Radio Industry’s Golden Era

| October 20, 2014

The following is the text of music industry legend Paul “Rap” Rappaport’s speech to the “Music Industry Reunion New York” on October 15, 2014. 

By Paul Rappaport
Classics du Jour

rappaport paulNEW YORK — I know that a lot of us sometimes reflect on how lucky we’ve been to have lived through such a magical, musical time in the world, and particularly here in the good ol’ USA.

But I thought it was worth reminding us all here tonight, that we were not only lucky to live through one of the most artistic times this country has ever seen, but that we also got to have a hand in shaping that culture.

By being able to help shape that culture, it let each of us know that we mattered, that we were in the right place at the right time — that we belonged to a much bigger picture, in helping connect some of the greatest music ever made with the public and that by making that connection we were somehow amazingly connected ourselves.

It was a time of creating high art, not only for the musicians, but in the way promotions were done at radio, the way we treated the press, and all of this art and creativity took precedence, and mattered before the money did.  And, we were all able to accomplish things that could have only happened at that magical time.

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Music radio should break down the barriers to expand audience and increase potential

| October 6, 2014

Pop, rock, AC and urban can take a creative lead from country


By Rob Stevens
One Stone Productions, Ltd.


studentrobbieNEW YORK — I’m in the music making side of the record biz.  Exec producer, producer, mixer, musician, etc.  Eleven Billboard #1s.  Red Hot Chili Peppers, Herbie Hancock, John Lennon (posthumous anthology), ONO’s recent string of dance hits, and scores of current top shelf EDM performers and remixers.

I’m also a big fan.  I’ve got high school and teenage kids who turn me on to the rare artist I haven’t yet turned them on to.

So I’m a hybrid.  Not some putt-putt Prius; more like one of those new Lexus power ‘brids, or my beloved “05 Accord hybrid with the 270 hp internal combustion engine AND a battery to make acceleration from 30-60 feel like you’re in a banal looking Porche.

So much for my street and corner office cred.

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Big Questions for Radio Broadcasters

| September 25, 2014

Perhaps we should focus what we are good at and that the public still wants and needs

By Bill McMahon
The Authentic Personality

mcmahonbillEAGLE, Idaho — What business are you in? Does your business have a future? These seem like fundamental questions radio broadcasters should be asking themselves right now.

Time spent listening to your AM and FM radio stations is declining precipitously each year. This is particularly true among young people. They’ve grown up in a world of visual stimuli and conditioning addicted to “screens.” They love music, but have minimal attraction to or experience with AM and FM radio. Advertising revenue for AM and FM radio is flat to declining.

There are shiny new high-tech competitors everywhere. Mobile phones and the internet are sucking up massive amounts of consumer time and attention. Pandora, Spotify, YouTube, and other services and apps offer continuous music customized to listeners moods and tastes as well as individual songs on demand. This competition is becoming widely available and easily accessible in cars where the majority of AM and FM radio is consumed.

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The Times They Are a-Changing…

| June 26, 2014

William O’Shaughnessy
Whitney Media


oshaughnessywriterNEW ROCHELLE, NY — As you have no doubt read in the public press, our colleagues at WFAS-FM are pulling up stakes and moving to the big City with a different name and changing to an “urban” format.

WFAS-FM has served Westchester and environs as a locally based suburban station with various music formats for years and we wish them well as they now turn their focus to the highly competitive New York City market.


During our own 54 years of serving the County, we’ve always had cordial relations with the 17 (count ‘em!) absentee owners of WFAS-FM … and, indeed, with many among the dizzying parade of 43 hard-working general managers who tried mightily to give the station some meaning and purpose and at least a semblance of local involvement despite the many corporate changes and turmoil in their front office.  

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If I Owned a Radio Station Right Now

| June 17, 2014

By Jerry Del Colliano
Inside Music Media


delcollianoSCOTTSDALE, AZ — This is a question I get all the time especially because I have devoted my career to generational media.

When 95 million millennials are rejecting radio, music, network television and disrupting everything they can, operating a radio station for profit seems like a bad business.

One thing I can tell you upfront.

I wouldn’t run my station the way the biggest majors run theirs.

Nor would I go brain dead not knowing whether to go or grow.

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NJBA’s Paul Rotella Addresses ‘Songwriters Equity Act’

| June 12, 2014

By Paul S. Rotella, Esq.
New Jersey Broadcasters Association


rotellapaulwriterMONROE TOWNSHIP, NJ — I am writing to you concerning the pending legislation entitled “Songwriters Equity Act” and what I feel is the continued “politicizing” of the topic without anyone fairly providing meaningful background on the inner workings of the “music compensation” topic from both sides of the isle.

In the essence of full and fair disclosure, which is something unfortunately very lacking about this topic by the partisan groups weighing in on this topic, I am the President and CEO of the New Jersey Broadcasters Association, representing the free-over-the-air radio and television broadcasters in the Garden State since 2008. I am also an attorney and a creative artist and have many friends and colleagues in the recording and performing arts.

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