CBS Names Matthew Siegel CFO of CBS RADIO. President Andre Fernandez says that as CBS RADIO prepares to be separated from parent CBS Corp, it is putting officers in place that will help the company succeed. It names Matthew Siegel as its chief financial officer. New York-based Siegel will “oversee all financial functions of the business, including treasury, investor relations, financial planning, corporate accounting and risk management.” Fernandez says, “Matt’s broad financial experience serving top media organizations will help position us for continued success.” Most recently he served as the co-CFO and treasurer of Time Warner Cable through the merger period with Charter Communications. Prior to that, he was the senior vice president and treasurer of TWC since just prior to TWC’s separation from Time Warner.
iHeartMedia Names Dustin Fletcher PD for ‘ALT 104.9’ in St. Louis. Calling on the services of alternative programming pro Dustin Fletcher, iHeartMedia names the PD for its month-old St. Louis alternative rocker, KLLT “ALT 104.9.” Fletcher recently served with the company as program director and midday host at Richmond’s WRXL “XL102” and W214AP “96.1 The Planet.” During his career he’s served at WFNX, Boston; WFXH, Savannah; WDYL, Richmond; and WFNZ, Knoxville. Fletcher comments, “I’m thrilled to join the iHeartMedia St. Louis team. The launch of ‘ALT 104.9’ along with the return of ‘The Woody Show’ are ushering in a new era for alternative rock fans in St. Louis and I’m honored to be a part of it.” ‘ALT 104.9’ launched on October 18. Fletcher begins his duties on December 6.
‘Rover’s Morning Glory’ Show Re-Ups with iHeartMedia. The WMMS, Cleveland-based “Rover’s Morning Glory” and iHeartMedia have agreed to a contract extension for the morning show hosted by Shane “Rover” French. The announcement isn’t specific about the term of the new contract but says that Rover will continue to host the show that airs weekdays from 6:00 am to 11:00 am on WMMS and “affiliates in key markets.” The program will continue to feature other on-air personalities including Duji, Dieter, Charlie, Nadz, Alex and Jeffrey. The program and is presented on the Internet in video format via RMG-TV. Rover says, “We’ve had a blast working with iHeartMedia since 2008 to expand and grow the show. In the coming months we’ll enter the next phase of ‘Rover’s Morning Glory’ – something BIG that’s never been tried in radio before. As the saying goes…stay tuned!”
More RadioInfo Career Moves. This change doesn’t take effect until February 28, 2017, but after 19 years in the position, Steve Fisher is leaving as EVP/chief financial officer at Entercom. The company is seeking Fisher’s replacement and has enlisted the services of executive search firm Spencer Stuart…..In the Twin Cities, Chris Rahn has exited the brand manager position at Go Media’s alternative KTWN “GO 96-3.”…..Morning personality Jeff Miles says that, due to personal reasons, he’s exited Beasley’s country WKLB, Boston…..In Sacramento, Todd Baker has stepped down from his morning show duties at CBS RADIO’s hot AC KZZO “NOW 100.5.”
RadioInfo Tidbits. New York State radio operator Galaxy Communications announces it has a new national ad sales rep firm. Gen Media Partners is now serving as Galaxy’s exclusive national ad sales rep. Galaxy president and CEO Ed Levine comments, “We are very pleased to move Galaxy’s national business to the leading independent rep firm in radio. I will sleep better at night knowing that I’m not relying on my direct competitor to oversee my national business any longer. Gen Media’s independent standing aligns with Galaxy’s, and their experienced team knows how to increase national revenue for the independent broadcaster.”…..iHeartMedia Milwaukee announces that beginning this Thursday (11/17) at 12:00 noon, classic hits WRIT “95.7 BIG FM” will begin playing all-Christmas music…..The Broadcasters Foundation of America unveils its new logo (pictured here), as well as its redesigned its website. The charity also launched new social media sites as part of a rebranding campaign that makes it easier for broadcasters to find help and give back. The new logo, with images of the American flag and a microphone, reinforce that the Foundation is a nationwide charity that helps broadcasters across the country. The more user-friendly and intuitive website makes navigation to the get-help and give-back pages easier, and the new social media sites generate broader awareness among broadcasters. BFoA president Jim Thompson says, “Over the past few months, we’ve received more requests than ever before, within a similar timeframe. As we get ready for our year-end donation drive, it’s important that our process is seamless and that every broadcaster knows where and how to ask for help or give back.”
53rd Anniversary of the JFK Assassination Coming Up – Investigator Mark Shaw Guests on Harrison Podcast Connecting Mysterious Death of Dorothy Kilgallen to Murder of President. With the anniversary of President John F. Kennedy’s assassination coming up on November 22, noted investigative reporter and author Mark Shaw guests on this week’s installment of the award-winning PodcastOne series “Up Close and Far Out with Michael Harrison.” Shaw is the author of the soon-to-be-released book The Reporter Who Knew Too Much: The Mysterious Death of What’s My Line TV Star and Media Icon Dorothy Kilgallen (Post Hill Press/Simon & Schuster, 2016). Was the “What’s My Line” TV star, media icon, gossip columnist and crack investigative reporter/journalist Dorothy Kilgallen murdered for writing a tell-all book about the JFK assassination? If so, is the main suspect in her death still at large? These questions and more are effectively tackled in former CNN, ESPN and USA TODAY legal analyst Mark Shaw’s forthcoming book. On interviewing the former radio talk show host and prolific author of 25 books, Harrison states, “Mark Shaw is the real deal when it comes to investigative journalism – as was Dorothy Kilgallen – one of the most important multi-media icons of the 20th century. I loved doing this interview for two reasons. First, as the years go by it is becoming increasingly evident that there is more to the story of JFK’s death than the official history would indicate. Second, I take every opportunity I can to expose new generations of media practitioners to the late Dorothy Kilgallen – hands down the most important woman ever to appear on radio, television and in print in the mid-20th century… and perhaps, ever!” To listen to the podcast in its entirety, please click here or click on the “Up Close and Far Out” player box located in the right-hand column on every page of Talkers.com and RadioInfo.com.
KVRQ Names Monroe APD. Having had previous market experience at Entercom alternative KNDD “The End,” Kim Monroe returns to Seattle as assistant program director/on-air talent for Hubbard Radio‘s KVRQ “Rock 98.9.” Monroe states, “I have always imagined myself coming back to this amazing city – I just was not sure how or when. Given this incredible opportunity to return to the city I love and resume my
radio career at KVRQ is like a dream. I am beyond excited to work side-by-side with well-respected programmer Dave Numme. I know we are going to do great things together. I especially want to thank my new radio family at Hubbard Radio Seattle, particularly [vice president and market manager] Marc Kaye.” In addition to KNDD, Monroe’s other credits include being an original content producer/programmer at SiriusXM; programming alternative WXTM, Cleveland (now CBS Radio sports outlet WXRK); music director/on-air talent at WEND, Charlotte; and doing record promotion for Sony/RED. Roughly five months ago (mid-March), Hubbard flipped hot AC KLCK “Click 98.9” to rock, changing its calls to KVRQ. In the July 2016 sweep, “Rock 98.9” was off two-tenths to 2.5 (#19, 6+, Nielsen Audio PPM) and is 3.8 shares behind CHR cluster-mate KQMV “MOVin’ 92.5” (6.3, #1, 6+).
Williams Wings to Denver’s KQKS for Mid-Days. Making a significant market size leap, Bryan Broadcasting CHR KNDE “Candy 95.1,” Bryan – College Station (Texas) mid-day talent Ebony Williams will transition to a similar assignment at Entercom Denver rhythmic CHR KQKS “KS-107.5.” In just over two weeks (Monday, 8/29), she will succeed Tony V, who segued to afternoons earlier this year. According to “KS-107.5” program director Victor Starr, “Ebony’s commitment to community involvement and command of social media will make her a game changer in Denver. Her great personality and fantastic listener engagement is perfect for mid-days at KQKS.” Williams comments, “I am ready to bring more flavor to a growing city while working alongside some of the best in the industry.” Three years after doing television weathercasts on KTBY-TV, Anchorage (Alaska), Williams shifted to radio, working for Anchorage stations KMVV and KFAT before landing at “Candy 95.1” Among persons 6+ in Nielsen Audio‘s July 2016 PPM report for Denver, “KS-107.5” is tied for ninth-place with a 4.3; classic rock cluster-mate KQMT “The Mountain” (6.9, 6+) sets the pace at #1.
PPM Analysis: Rhythmic CHR. RadioInfo managing editor Mike Kinosian presents his analysis of three hit-based formats based on ratings data from Nielsen Audio’s July 2016 PPM survey. Posted yesterday (Thursday, 8/11) was an overview of rhythmic hot AC, while a similar July 2016 mainstream CHR recap is coming next week. The focus today though is rhythmic CHR. In the nation’s largest radio market, nine-tenths of a share separates iHeartMedia‘s WKTU “The Beat of New York” and Emmis-owned WQHT “Hot 97.” It is the third straight gain for WKTU, while “Hot 97” registers a 3.5 (6+) for the third time in the last four sweeps. For much more, including charts illustrating (6+) ratings fluctuations from last month to this; July 2015 – July 2016 comparisons; and July 2016 market rank (no rhythmic CHR ranks first), click here.
AURN’s ”The Afternoon Rush” Adds Colyar. Former co-host of the syndicated “Rickey Smiley Show” – comedian Michael Colyar – joins Ebony Steele and sidekick Loni Swain on American Urban Radio Networks’ 3:00 – 7:00 pm (ET) “The Afternoon Rush.” Mike Love oversees programming for the show and comments, “We are delighted to add the comedic talents of Colyar. He is funny, politically astute, and his adult approach to the issues of our time make him the perfect fit.” Chicago native Coyer was the original host of “BET Live from LA” and he is a motivational speaker. “The Afternoon Rush” replaces the long-running program hosted by Doug Banks, who passed away four months ago.
Wright Choice for Mornings on KVRV. Onetime KIOI, San Francisco morning talent Danny Wright joins Amaturo Sonoma Media Santa Rosa (California) classic rocker KVRV “97.7 The River” for wakeup duty. Amaturo Sonoma Media vice president of programming and operations Jim Murphy remarks, “Danny Wright’s passion for – and knowledge of – contemporary pop culture, and sports will bring lots of dimension to the show. He will add to our commitment of live and local community radio.” Program director Mike Watermann notes that Wright’s morning drive program “will be bright and fast-paced. It will include plenty of great classic rock songs from artists like AC/DC, Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, Rolling Stones, Rush, and many others for which ‘The River’ is famous.” No stranger to Amaturo Sonoma Media, Wright – who begins his new duties one week from Monday (8/22) – previously worked for Santa Rosa cluster-mates hot AC KMHX “Mix 104.9” and CHR KHTH “Hot 101.7,” as well as for KZQZ, San Francisco; XHTO, El Paso; and KSXY, Santa Rosa.
RadioInfo Tidbits. Maryland prosecutors have dropped assault charges against iHeartMedia syndicated personality/co-owned Washington, D.C. CHR WIHT “Hot 99.5” morning talent Kane (real name – Peter Deibler). A judge’s ruling last month lifted a protective order obtained by the person filing the charges – Kane’s wife Natasha Deibler – and questioned whether the allegations rose to the level of second-degree assault. In last month’s protective order hearing, Montgomery County judge Terrence McGann stated the two sides had “wildly different” accounts of the May 25 incident and that the Deiblers “detest and loathe each other.” Investigators tried and failed to interview Natasha Deibler, so based on her resistance to cooperate, the frontline prosecutor believed the case should not be prosecuted. The Deiblers are going through a divorce. ….. Nine-year KMXV “Mix 93.3,” Kansas City program director and morning co-host “Ponch” exits. All told, “Ponch” had been with the Steel City CHR for the last 17 years. ….. Numerous lineup alterations at CBS Radio rhythmic CHR KSFM, Sacramento find Tony Tecate, who had been voice-tracking a nightly shift from Hawaii, relocating to Sacramento to do morning drive, where he will be teamed with midday personality Bre Ruiz. Tecate & Ruiz succeed Wayne, Jay, & Megan with Megan replacing Ruiz in mid-days; Wayne and Jay exit. Finally, New York City CHR sibling WBMP “92.3 Amp Radio” morning co-host Nina takes over voice-tracking the KSFM night shift vacated by Tecate. ….. After one year as program director of Scripps Tulsa CHR KHTT “K-Hits 106.9,” John Roberts exits. Meanwhile, mid-day talent Tabatha Grammer is upped to assistant PD and nighttime personality Aly Presser is promoted to mornings. Also within that cluster, production director Terry Cooper departs, as do talk KFAQ morning co-host Eddie Huff and morning anchor Richard Linihan. ….. There’s more news from that Oklahoma market: Three months after leaving iHeartMedia-owned country KTGX “106.1 The Twister,” Tulsa as program director, Kristina Carlyle will join cross-town format rival – Scripps‘ KVOO “Today’s Country Variety” – next Monday (8/15) as assistant program director/music director. Carlyle previously was assistant program director/music director of Cox Media Group Tulsa’s country-formatted KWEN “Today’s Country 95.5″ and she spent eight years with Cumulus Media Albuquerque’s country KRST. ….. Nashville is the site of this year’s Radio Show produced by the Radio Advertising Bureau (RAB) and the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB). In less than six weeks, Grammy-winner Jennifer Nettles will perform at the NAB Marconi Radio awards dinner & show (9/22). NAB executive vice president of radio John David states, “Jennifer Nettles is a truly phenomenal country music performer with awards and accolades recognizing both her voice and songwriting abilities. We thank Big Machine Label Group and Scott Borchetta for connecting us; I look forward to what will surely be an unforgettable performance.”
Local Radio Networks, Rocking M Media Sign Multi-Station Deal. Through the arrangement, Local Radio Networks (LRN) will provide eight full-time music formats to Rocking M Media‘s 21 music stations – all of which are located in Kansas. Rocking M Media president Christopher Miller maintains that, “If I had to rate the level of support and quality of product we have received from Local Radio Networks on a scale of one to 10, it would be a 12.” Recently added to the list of LRN formats are CHR, classic hits, and mainstream rock. Its other formats are adult contemporary, hot AC, country, classic country, classic rock, and oldies. AdLarge Media provides national advertising sales representation for all LRN audio formats.
Soon-to-be-Released Book About Talk Radio Discussed on Harrison Podcast. Veteran talk radio producer, Bernadette Duncan, appears as the guest on this week’s installment of the PodcastOne hit series “Up Close and Far Out with Michael Harrison” talking about her forthcoming book, scheduled for publication in September, titled Yappy Days: Behind the Scenes with Newsers, Schmoozers, Boozers and Losers (AuthorHouse/Talkers Books 2016). The book chronicles Duncan’s 26-year career “behind the glass” as a New York City-based talk radio producer in the “golden era” between the eighties and first decade of the 21st century. Duncan (who is also married to Michael Harrison) served as a producer for some of the biggest names in talk radio during that period. They include Larry King, Sally Jessy Raphael, Gil Gross, Tom Snyder, Lou Dobbs, Charles Osgood and more. The book explores the quirky egos of radio’s top performers and often-neurotic guests and is set against the dramatically changing backdrop of America’s pre- and post-9/11 realities. It is full of anecdotes and insights about the industry, its people and processes. Duncan explores the complex office politics in this offbeat arena of show business capturing what it takes to be a radio producer – a role she describes as “the most under-rated, under-paid and under-appreciated job in commercial media.” On the podcast, Harrison and Duncan specifically discuss her experiences working with Sally Jessy Raphael – one of the true pioneers of talk radio who paved the way for countless others and was Duncan’s earliest inspiration to enter the field. Duncan talks about the personal growth she achieved working across the glass from Larry King during his media heyday as well as the fiery drama that took place behind the scenes of The Lou Dobbs Show that she helped launch as executive producer. On completing the podcast Harrison says, “There are so many stories and people written about in this book that we hardly scratched the surface in this advance interview – but there will be plenty of time to get deeper into it all when Bernadette goes on tour promoting it next month. Meantime, it was enormously fun having her as a guest on the podcast and I think radio pros and media freaks alike will love it.” 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 every page of Talkers.com and RadioInfo.com.
Candelaria Upped to OM at Beasley Las Vegas. After almost four years of success as PD for rhythmic oldies KOAS “Old School 105.7” and hot AC KVGS “Star 107.9” in Las Vegas, John Candelaria is promoted to operations manager for the Beasley Media Group Las Vegas cluster. Market manager Tom Humm states, “John has lead ‘Old School 105.7’ to new ratings and revenue increases, year after year. Additionally, John has assisted the Las Vegas program directors on a daily basis, while working with vice president of programing Justin Chase to launch new rhythmic formats across the country. I am excited to have John manage and lead our Las Vegas stations to even greater success in the years ahead.” Candelaria, who also serves as morning drive co-host on KOAS, will work with cluster programmers Mike O’Brian of classic hits KKLZ, Kris Daniels of country KCYE, and John Shaffer of news/talk KDWN, as well as cluster marketing director Shayla Martinez.
Sickles Named Alpha Media Corporate Marketing Manager. Previously director of urban promotions and community affairs for Alpha Media Louisville, Valerie Sickles is upped to the corporate level where she is now corporate marketing manager. Alpha says Sickles will remain based in Louisville and will focus “mainly on the East Coast and centrally located Alpha markets with brand/station marketing, contesting, promotions and event facilitation.” She’ll report to Alpha vice president of marketing Randi P’Pool, who comments, “I’ve worked with Valerie for quite some time at the market level and have been impressed with her passion, drive and energy. She’s a great addition to the Alpha marketing team and I’m very excited to have her on board to help us continue growing all of our live and local brands.”
More RadioInfo Career Moves. This is the time of the year when the radio industry tends to see the most budget-related staff reductions and that’s the case at Hubbard Radio’s classic rock WDRV, Chicago “The Drive” as longtime director of creative services Tom Couch is let go. On his Facebook page, Couch writes: “Well, it was a good, almost 15 year run, but my time at WDRV in Chicago is up. Budget issues necessitated staff cutbacks, and I was one who was cut. Thanks to Greg Solk and everyone at the Drive. It was a great ride. Onward and Upward.” Couch spent more than a decade in the same position with CBS RADIO’s crosstown triple A WXRT before joining WDRV in 2001…..Salem Media Group announces Kevin Isaacs is moving from his director of sales role with the company’s Atlanta station group to general manager for the Cleveland operations. Salem VP of operations Mike Moran says, “Having worked with Kevin since he joined the company, I have seen first-hand his business skills, passion, creativity, and leadership. Kevin brings the added benefit of being a native Ohioan with deep ties to the state. I believe with Kevin we have a leader who will guide our Cleveland team and this cluster to new heights.” Salem operates news/talk WHK “AM 1420 The Answer,” and Christian outlets WHKW, WHKZ, and WFHM.
Beasley’s WBRN, Tampa Re-Brands as ‘98.7 No Rules Rock.’ When Beasley Media Group brought Bubba the Love Sponge to its Tampa station WBRN, it branded the station “Bubba 98.7,” and built the talk/rock station around him. That was before Bubba’s admission to ratings tampering earlier in the fall that saw the station delisted from the Nielsen Audio PPM surveys in both September and October. Bubba is not technically an employee of Beasley so the company has enjoyed some degree of separation from Bubba in the wake of the scandal. Bubba syndicates his morning program to a number of other markets from the Tampa flagship. Bubba is being sued by Nielsen for $1 million for damages relating to the ratings tampering. Beasley is not being sued. But, whether this re-branding is to put a degree of distance between it and Bubba’s public image or whether this portends a change in the company’s relationship with Bubba is not clear.
KORL, Honolulu Adds Envision’s ‘Notorious 90s.’ “KROCK 101.5” in Honolulu adds the “Notorious 90s” show to its Saturday afternoon programming, airing from 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm. The Envision Networks-syndicated program is hosted by LA Lloyd and produced by Joe Kelly (producer of AV Deli and Sun City Café) and features two hours of 90s rock from artists including Alice in Chains, Nirvana, Godsmack, Pearl Jam, Metallica, Stone Temple Pilots, Soundgarden, Green Day and more. Hochman Hawaii Communications operates the rock format on translator K268BE.
Duane 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: Chris Russell, golden-eared program director at WMXO-FM, Buffalo; on-air personality Bayley Brown from KHUM, Humboldt County; Golden-eared music director Karoline Kramer Gould (also known to her followers as Momma K) at WJCU, Cleveland; Bill Phipps the golden-eared afternoon personality at WSIG, Mt. Jackson, Virginia “Real Country 96.9”; plus internet sensation The Iceman; provides programmers with musical suggestions worthy of the attention of pro-active radio formats. You’ll be turned on to some of the exciting artists and music buzzing out there just over the horizon from the worlds of pop, rock, country and EDM. This week’s selection posted today (9/23) includes such names as: Lauren Winans, Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Lana Del Rey, Pitbull, Mohombi & Wisin, Alison Wonderland, Ryan Adams, Naughty Boy, Beyoncé, Arrow Benjamin, Selena Gomez, Maroon 5, Angela Perley & The Howling Moons, Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats, Fall Out Boy, Chris Cornell, Cold War Kids, Never Shout Never, Jackie Greene, G. Love & The Special Sauce, Citizen Cope, Viet Cong, Kopecky, Skinny Lister, Alabama, Thomas Rhett, Kristian Bush, Jewel, Dolly Parton, Jack Tempchin, Jason James, Kacey Musgraves, Willie Nelson, Toby Keith, Joe Nichols, Vicetone, Battles, Unknown Mortal Orchestra, among others. To check out this valuable information, please click here.
Nielsen Calls Audible to Publishing September Stats. Rather than spreading out the release of ratings information over four days as it typically does with its monthly data, Nielsen Audio is opting to consolidate its September PPM results into two – next Tuesday (9/29) and Wednesday (9/30). The first batch of markets is unaffected by the decision and will get their September numbers next Tuesday as originally planned. Those markets are New York City; Los Angeles; Chicago; San Francisco; Dallas; Houston; Philadelphia; Atlanta; Nassau-Suffolk (Long Island); Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario (Los Angeles’ Inland Empire); San Jose; and Middlesex-Somerset-Union (New Jersey). The second group not only moves up one day, it will join group one – meaning 24 (rather than 12) markets will have data released next Tuesday. Group two consists of Washington, DC; Boston; Detroit; Miami; Seattle; Phoenix; Minneapolis; San Diego; Tampa; Denver; Baltimore; and St. Louis. Stations from the remaining 24-PPM markets (groups three and four) get to see the outcome of the September 2015 sweep next Wednesday. Group three is Portland; Charlotte; Pittsburgh; Sacramento; San Antonio; Cincinnati; Cleveland; Salt Lake City; Las Vegas; Kansas City; Orlando; and Columbus. Comprising group four are facilities in Austin; Milwaukee; Indianapolis; Providence; Raleigh; Norfolk; Nashville; Greensboro; West Palm Beach; Jacksonville; Memphis; and Hartford.
CBS RADIO’s Mick Anselmo to Retire. Senior vice president and market manager for CBS RADIO’s Minneapolis cluster, Mick Anselmo, announces he’s retiring from the company at the end of the year. Anselmo has been managing radio stations in the Twin Cities for more than 20 years – for iHeartMedia and the old AM/FM and Chancellor groups – with the last seven spent working for CBS RADIO. The company is searching for Anselmo’s replacement to oversee news/talk WCCO “Newsradio 830,” country KMNB “BUZ’N @ 102.9” and adult hits KZJK “104.1 Jack FM.”
Fort Wayne Market Gets New ‘Alt 99-5’ from Sarkes Tarzian. The new alternative rock “Alt 99-5” is airing on Sarkes Tarzian-owned sister station WAJI’s HD-2 channel and on a new translator at 99.5FM. It’s launching with 10,000 commercial-free songs and featuring core artists including: Black Keys, Cage the Elephant, Foo Fighters, Green Day, Imagine Dragons, Mumford & Sons, Muse, Nirvana, Red Hot Chili Peppers, The Killers, Weezer and more. WTTS, Bloomington, Indiana PD Brad Holtz is handling programming for the new outlet.
Dave Cobb to Head MARC Radio’s Gainesville Station Group. Southeastern radio pro Dave Cobb is named the general manager for MARC Radio’s seven-station Gainesville, Florida cluster. Cobb – who’s served as chairman of the Florida Association of Broadcasters in addition to his decades of work at commercial radio outlets – will oversee contemporary Christian WPLL “Pulse 106.9”; hip hop WTMG “Magic 101.3”; alternative rock WHHZ “100.5 The Buzz”; news/talk WRZN “NewsRadio 980”; Christian teaching WTMN “The Shepherd”; and classic country WDVH “Hank FM.” MARC Radio VP of sales Kirk Litton comments, “You know you are on the right track when you can convince star veterans like Dave Cobb to join your management team. Dave has a great track record of success and brings an impressive firsthand knowledge of the markets from his prior experience here in Florida.”
Blake Shelton Visits NASH Campus. Country music star and cast member of NBC-TV’s “The Voice,” Blake Shelton, dropped by the NASH Campus today (9/23) to visit with the nationally syndicated “America’s Morning Show” program. Pictured here (from l-r) are: Cumulus Media SVP of content & programming Mike McVay, AMS personality Ashley Figueroa, Shelton, and AMS host Blair Garner.
PPM Data – Round Three. The third installment of July 2015 PPM ratings data has been released. The latest markets are Portland, Charlotte, Pittsburgh, Sacramento, San Antonio, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Salt Lake City, Las Vegas, Kansas City, Orlando, and Columbus. This survey period covered June 18 through July 15. View all the 6+ numbers from subscribing stations here. RadioInfo managing editor Mike Kinosian provides his “Ten Takeaways” below.
1) Portland – Not only does KKCW “K-103” occupy the penthouse for the 13th consecutive survey, the iHeartMedia adult contemporary facility registers a walloping +1.5 (8.7 – 10.2) for its strongest 6+-stat since the monstrous 18.1 in “Holiday” 2014. Bumping up from an eighth-place tie to seventh is Alpha Media‘s country KUPL “The Bull,” which posts its fifth successive positive trend (3.5 – 3.8 – 4.0 – 4.5 – 4.7 – 4.8, 6+) for a cumulative +1.3. Down in back-to-back sweeps (3.1 – 2.8 – 2.6, 6+), Entercom‘s KNRK “94/7 Alternative Portland” (#17 to #16) busts out a +.8 to 3.4, which happens to be its best performance in exactly one year (3.7 July 2014). After notching a +1.1 to 7.6, its loftiest (6+) stat in the PPM era, co-owned country KWJJ “The Wolf” regresses by six-tenths to 7.0, but it remains in the runner-up slot for the fourth straight time. Also off by six-tenths is classic rock sibling KGON, which in addition to dropping out of the top 10 (#8 to #13), is down or flat for the fifth successive sweep (5.6 – 5.5 – 4.8 – 4.8 – 4.7 – 4.1, 6+) for a combined -1.5. Remaining in that Entercom cluster, hot AC KRSK “The Buzz” sputters by -1.4 as its string of progressive trends ends at three (4.5 – 4.8 – 5.3 – 5.7 – 4.3, 6+); “The Buzz” freefalls from fourth to tenth.
2) Charlotte – Over and above dialing up an impressive +1.2 to 3.9, Radio One gospel WPZS “Praise – Charlotte’s Inspiration Station” (#13 to #12) curtails eight straight monthlies of down or flat trends which nearly sliced its 6+-share in half (5.1 – 4.6 – 4.4 – 4.4 – 4.0 – 3.7 – 3.6 – 2.9 – 2.7). Faltering by eight-tenths in June, iHeartMedia‘s alternative WEND “106-5 The End” regains seven-tenths (3.9 – 3.1 – 3.8, 6+), yet actually slips from #12 to #13. Improving by one-half share each (6+) are Beasley Media Group CHR WNKS “Kiss 95.1” (eighth to fifth); Blue Ridge contemporary Christian WMIT “106.9 The Light” (1.5, #17 to #16); and Davidson College-owned classical WDAV (1.3, #18 to #17). Yielding a combined +1.3, this is the third straight up-trend for “Kiss” (4.2 – 4.4 – 5.0 – 5.5, 6+); WDAV had been down or flat the past five sweeps (1.5 – 1.4 – 1.1 – .9 – .9 – .8, 6+). On the heels of a stunning +1.5 in June, Beasley Media Group‘s WSOC “Country’s Greatest Hits” surrenders most of it (7.4 – 8.9 – 7.8, -1.1) but repeats at #1 (6+). Similarly-formatted WKKT, which was down by nine-tenths in June, fails to capitalize on the WSOC decline as “The Kat” regresses by another one-half share (8.2 – 7.3 – 6.8) and slides from third to fourth. Prior to June’s -.9, “The Kat” was locked on 8.2 (6+) in April and May. In addition to WSOC, another market outlet erodes by -1.1, as iHeartMedia adult hits WLKO “The Lake” slips from fifth to seventh with its third straight downward trend (6.8 – 6.7 – 6.3 – 5.2, 6+). Hanging out a lofty +1.4 in June to 6.0, its best showing since January’s 6.6, Beasley Media Group adult contemporary WKQC “K-104.7” declines by six-tenths in July, but is steady at #6. Although it repeats in the runner-up slot, co-owned urban contemporary WPEG “Power 98” falters by seven-tenths (7.6 – 6.9, 6+). Having improved by seven-tenths in June, Greater Media‘s WLNK “The Link” forfeits all of it and one-tenth more (4.1 – 4.8 – 4.0, 6+), shifting from #10 to #11.
3) Pittsburgh – Despite a seven-tenths gain (6.0 – 6.7, 6+), CBS Radio/Pittsburgh Pirates flagship KDKA-FM “The Fan” remains in fifth-place. Bumping up from ninth to eighth (4.0 – 4.8, +.8, 6+), co-owned WDSY “Y-108 Pittsburgh’s New Hit Country” is in the 4.0 – 4.9 for the ninth straight sweep. It widens the lead over iHeartMedia‘s WPGB “Big 104.7 Pittsburgh’s New Country Leader,” which is flat at 3.4 and steady at #10. Its alternative sibling WXDX “The X at 105.9” gains six-tenths (4.4 – 5.0, 6+) to inch up from eighth to seventh. Rock cluster-mate WDVE dipped by one-half share in June and now sputters by more than twice that (10.2 – 9.7 – 8.6, -1.1, 6+), yet finishes second for the fourth straight sweep. Albeit down for the third consecutive survey period (11.2 -10.7 – 10.3 – 10.0, -.36+), iHeartMedia classic hits-oldies WWSW “3WS” remains on top for the fourth successive sweep.
4) Sacramento – As it regains the one-tenth it lost in June (8.8 – 8.7 – 8.8, +.1, 6+), Entercom classic rocker KSEG “The Eagle” finishes first for the seventh straight time. By registering a +.3 (to 2.3, 6+), Entravsion-owned KNTY “The Wolf” (steady at #17) is the only country outlet in California’ state capital to improve month-month. In the six previous sweeps – January through June – “The Wolf” logged a 2.0 or 2.1 (2.0 – 2.0 – 2.1 – 2.1 – 2.0 – 2.0, 6+). Meanwhile, country rivals KNCI (4.6) and KBEB “B-92.5 Today’s Country” (3.4) are off by four-tenths and one-half share, respectively; CBS Radio‘s KNCI stumbles from fifth to eighth, while iHeartMedia‘s “B-92.5” falls out of the top ten (#10 to #13). KNCI had been up the past three sweeps for a combined one-share gain (4.0 – 4.3 – 4.9 – 5.0, 6+). Its hot AC sibling KZZO “Now 100.5” relinquishes all of June’s one-half share gain and one-tenth more (4.2 – 4.7 – 4.1, -.6, 6+), backtracking from eighth to ninth. Format foe – Entercom’s KUDL “Star 106.5” – forfeits June’s one-tenth increase (3.5 – 3.6 – 3.5, 6+), yet improves from #12 to a tie at #11. In addition to KBEB, Entercom alternative KKDO Radio 94.7 and Lazer Broadcasting Spanish contemporary KLMG (1.6 – 1.1, 6+) also regress by one-half share from June. For KKDO, it is its sixth consecutive sweep without an increase (4.9 – 4.4 – 4.2 – 4.2 – 4.0 – 3.7 – 3.2, 6+) for a cumulative -1.7.
5) San Antonio – Chalk up an accomplishment for an HD channel. Specifically it is iHeartMedia‘s KQXT-HD3, which improves by seven-tenths (1.1 – 1.8, 6+) to crack the top 20 (#20). Notching gains of six-tenths each are Cox Media Group cluster-mates KCYY “Y-100 San Antonio’s New Country Leader” (6.4 – 7.0, steady at #2) and KKYX “Country Legends” (2.3 – 2.9, #17 to #15). Exactly one-share behind “Y-100” is iHeartMedia’s similarly-formatted KAJA “KJ-97” (5.8 – 6.0, +.2), which advances from fourth to third; “Country Legends” was off by one-half share in June. Up by nine-tenths in June, Alpha Media regional Mexican KSAH-FM “La Ley” returns all of it (1.4 – 2.3 – 1.4, 6+), as it spirals from #17 to #22. This time last month, KBBT “The Beat” racked up an eye-popping +2.4, but the Univision rhythmic CHR forfeits one-third of it (4.0 – 6.4, 5.6, -.8, 6+), slipping from the runner-up slot to fourth-place. The 6.4 that “The Beat” recorded in June is its strongest 6+-stat since 6.8 in August 2014. Faltering by one-half share each (6+) are iHeartMedia CHR KXXM “Mix 96.1” (5.3 – 4.8, steady at #5); co-owned rhythmic CHR KZEP “Hot 104.5” (2.6 – 2.1, #15 to #19); and Cox Media Group’s KISS “Rocks San Antonio” (4.7 – 4.2, eighth to tenth); KISS was +.7 in June. Following June’s potent +1.2 (one-half that registered by “The Beat”), Cox Media Group classic hits-oldies KONO-FM “San Antonio’s Greatest Hits” declines by four-tenths (7.5 – 7.1, 6+) but finishes #1 for the 12th time in the last 17 sweeps.
6) Cleveland – Properties owned by iHeartMedia finish first, second, and third, including pacesetter WMJI “Cleveland’s Greatest Hits,” which nearly matches June’s +1.1 with a full-share improvement (9.6 – 10.7 – 11.7, 6+). WMJI racked up 11.7 shares in February and March, as well. While it is runner-up for the third straight sweep, country WGAR sputters by nine-tenths (9.8 – 8.9, 6+). Down one full-share in June after May’s -.7, WHLK “The Lake” rebounds with a one-half share gain (8.7 – 7.7 – 8.2, 6+) to advance from fourth to third. It dislodges co-owned talker/Cleveland Indians flagship WTAM, which suffers an erosion of -1.2 (7.8 – 6.6), falling to fifth; WTAM was +1.9 in May. Owing to a robust +.9 to 7.5 (6+), Radio One-owned urban AC WZAK more than makes up for three successive (slight) downward trends (7.2 – 6.9 – 6.8 – 6.6, 6+) and inches up from fifth to fourth. In May, CBS Radio hot AC WQAL “Q-104” improved by one full-share; it slipped by seven-tenths in June; and now drops another nine-tenths (6.0 – 5.3 – 4.4, 6+), departing the top ten (#9 to #11). Before a +1.0 in May, “Q-104” had three straight downward trends (5.8 – 5.4 – 5.3 – 5.0, 6+). Its 4.4 is the station’s lowest 6+-stat in almost five years (4.1 in November 2010). With a three-tenths improvement to 5.9, cluster-mate WNCX “Cleveland’s Classic Rock” (steady at #7) applies the brakes to four straight downward trends which had resulted in a combined -1.2 (6.8 – 6.7 – 6.2 – 6.1 – 5.6, 6+).
7) Salt Lake City – Hot AC is the headline here with Capital Broadcasting‘s KBZN “Now 97.7” (8.1 – 7.8, -.3, 6+) repeating at #1 and iHeartMedia-owned KJMY “My-99.5” logging a +1.1 (4.1 – 5.2, 6+) to jump from ninth to sixth. Prior to July’s -.3, “Now” notched six straight progressive trends producing a combined +3.1 (5.0 – 6.3 – 6.7 – 6.9 – 7.1 – 7.2 – 8.1, 6+). Its lead over Bonneville adult contemporary KSFI “FM 100” (7.5 – 7.7, +.2, 6+) though is just one-tenth; “FM 100” held the top spot for seven consecutive months before relinquishing the title to “Now” in June. The last time “My-99.5” crossed the five-share barrier was September 2013 (also 5.2). Down or flat for the fifth successive sweep (5.2 – 5.2 – 5.0 – 4.5 – 4.5 – 3.8, 6+), Bonneville’s KRSP “The Arrow” (-.7) drops out of the top ten (#8 to #11) and has its weakest 6+-showing since December’s 3.7. Declining by six-tenths each (6+) are Brigham Young University‘s KBYU “Classical 89” (2.2 – 1.6, #16 to #19) and Broadway Media country outlet KEGA “The Eagle” (1.9 – 1.3, #18 to #22).
8) Kansas City – It has been more than five years since KCUR reached the four-share threshold (4.1 in May 2010, 6+), but by registering a strong +1.4, the University of Missouri-owned facility not only hits 4.5, it enters the top ten (#14 to a tie at #9). The rollercoaster ride continues for Entercom alternative KRBZ “The Buzz,” which gained one-half share in May; returned all of it in June; and now dials up a +.9 in July (5.2 – 5.7 – 5.2 – 6.1, 6+), as it zooms from fifth to second. In the runner-up slot, it catches co-owned Kansas City Royals flagship KCSP “610 Sports Radio – Where the Royals Play,” which has its second straight decline (7.4 – 6.6 – 6.1). The combined -1.3 in June and July follows May’s astonishing +3.3 that took KCSP from #12 all the way to #1 (6+). Having regrouped from a -1.0 in May by ratcheting up a +1.2 in June, Cumulus Media classic rocker KCFX “The Fox” adds one-half share (6.1 – 7.3 – 7.8, 6+) to finish first – as it did in December 2014, “Holiday” 2014, January 2015, February 2015, April 2015, and June 2015. Also improving by one-half share are co-owned hot AC KZPT “99.7 The Point” and Steel City Media CHR KMXV “Mix 93.3”; both have identical 5.5 – 6.0 #3 (tie) to #4 (tie) profiles. Following three successive positive trends (1.8 – 2.3 – 2.8 – 3.0, 6+), contemporary Christian KJNW “Life 88.5” regresses by nine-tenths to 2.1 to slide from #16 to #19. There is no July consensus in the market’s country battle: Steel City Media’s KFKF “Country 94.1” is up by three-tenths to 4.8 (#8 to #7); co-owned KBEQ “Q-104” is flat at 3.1 (tie at #14 to #15); and Entercom’s WDAF-FM “The Wolf” is down by one-half share to slip from #10 to #11. It is the fifth straight time “The Wolf” has failed to post a positive trend (6.2 – 5.0 – 4.9 – 4.1 – 4.1 – 3.6, 6+) for a combined -2.6.
9) Orlando – The good news for iHeartMedia‘s Spanish tropical WRUM “Rumba” is that it is #1 for the fifth straight ratings period. On the flipside though, “Rumba” erodes by -1.3 (8.4 – 7.1, 6+) and is being chased by CHR cluster-mate WXXL “XL-106.7,” which gains six-tenths (6.2 – 6.8) to leap from fourth to second, three-tenths from the top. “XL-106.7” was down by eight-tenths in June. As iHeartMedia talker WFLF improves by one-half share (1.1 – 1.6, 6+), Central Florida Educational Foundation contemporary Christian WPOZ “Z-88.3 Safe for the Little Ears” declines by that margin (6.3 – 5.8). WPOZ tumbles from a tie at #2 to a deadlock at #6, while WFLF advances from a tie at #20 to a tie at #18. The 1.6 by WFLF is its highest since March 2013 (also 1.6, 6+). After three successive up or flat trends (4.7 – 5.9 – 6.3 – 6.3, 6+), CBS Radio classic hits-oldies WOCL “Sunny 105.9” drops three-tenths to 6.0, moving from second to part of a three-way tie at #3. Owing to a +.1, Cox Media Group country WWKA “K-92.3” records its third straight progressive trend (4.8 – 5.2 – 5.9 – 6.0, 6+) and joins WOCL at #3.
10) Columbus – The top five rankers are the same as in June. Locked on 11.7 in April, May, and June – iHeartMedia‘s WCOL-FM posts a hearty +1.2 to 12.9, thus putting an exclamation point on the top spot for the seventh successive sweep. Off by two-tenths after June’s +.7 (9.3 – 10.0 – 9.8, 6+), co-owned WNCI finishes second for the 14th consecutive ratings period. It fails to do so this time, but the heritage CHR has registered a 10.0-share or higher in 24 of the last 30 monthlies for an 80% success rate. Their talk sibling WTVN (steady at #3) improves by seven-tenths (7.3 – 8.0, 6+), as does Saga adult contemporary WSNY “Sunny 95,” which is fourth for the fourth consecutive sweep. Recent (6+) trends for “Sunny” are +2.1 (December – “Holiday”); -1.7 (“Holiday” – January); +.8 (January – February); -.5 (February – March); +.4 (March – April); -.7 (April – May); +1.1 (May – June); and +.7 (June – July). Unlike WTVN and WSNY, seven-tenths is not lucky for Wilks Broadcasting‘s WLVQ, as “Q-96 Ohio’s Best Rock” sputters by that amount (4.8 – 4.1, 6+) to slip from sixth to seventh. Even though they drop by six-tenths each (6+), Radiohio-owned sports WBNS-FM “The Fan” and iHeartMedia urban contemporary WZCB “The Beat” (3.5 – 2.9) retain their #8 and #10 rankings, respectively. Not only is it the sixth straight monthly without an increase for “The Fan” (7.2 – 5.0 – 4.9 – 4.5 – 4.3 – 4.2 – 3.6, 6+), its 6+-share has been sliced exactly in half in that period.
Tidwell Tapped as iHM San Antonio SVP/Programming. Inbound from Tucson where he was iHeartMedia‘s senior vice president of programming, Lance Tidwell transfers to San Antonio for similar duties. Executive vice president of programming for iHeartMedia major markets Brad Hardin comments, “I am extremely pleased to welcome Lance to the iHeartMedia San Antonio family. Tidwell is a strong talent and has had much success in his tenure with iHeartMedia. His programming acumen and depth of experience will allow him to ramp up quickly and build immediate relationships with the programming and sales team.” San Antonio market president Marlene Trevino remarks, “I am excited that our San Antonio programming operations will be led by Tidwell. He understands our company¹s vision to be innovative with every move. Lance¹s experience collaborating with programming and sales teams will provide us and our partners with unbeatable forward momentum in the continued evolution of our brands in the San Antonio market.” Tidwell notes that he is “grateful” to Trevino and Hardin “for the chance to work with these great brands and team in San Antonio. I am eager to get started and lead the market to continued growth and success.” In addition to having programmed in Seattle, Memphis, Hartford, Monterey-Salinas, and New Haven (Connecticut), Tidwell was chief operating officer for Southern Star Broadcasting. With 6+ share/market ranks from the most recent Nielsen Audio PPM sweep in parentheses (July 2015), iHeartMedia’s San Antonio cluster consists of country KAJA “KJ-97” (6.0, #3); mainstream CHR KXXM “Mix 96.1” (4.8, #5); adult contemporary KQXT “Q-101.9” (4.7, #6); talk WOAI (4.2, #10); rhythmic CHR KZEP “Hot 104.5” (2.1, #19); regional Mexican KQXT-HD3 (1.8, #20); sports KTKR “The Ticket” (.6, #26); and classic country KRPT “B-Buc” (.2, #27).
CBS Radio Q2 Revenue Off 5%. While second quarter revenue for CBS Corp. increased 1% to $3.22 billion from $3.19 billion in 2014, CBS Radio revenue declined 5%. Executive chair Sumner Redstone states, “CBS is at the center of the action during an extremely exciting time in media. We continue to succeed as a result of our world-class content.” According to president and chief executive officer Les Moonves, “This quarter underscores the key steps we are taking to build out our long-term growth strategy. Our premium content remains the cornerstone of our success, and I am confident this fall’s new primetime lineup will lead us to another victory next season.” The company’s local broadcasting revenue was down 2% to $654 million from $665 million, as television station revenue was up 1%, and local broadcasting operating income (OI) fell 8% to $198 million from $215 million. The company posted net earnings of $332 million, down from $439 million in the year-ago period.
National Radio Hall of Fame Nominees Announced. The 24 candidates in six categories were determined by the organization’s steering committee. National Radio Hall of Fame chair Kraig Kitchin brings back public engagement through social media balloting in the “Music Format On-Air Personality” and “Spoken Word On-Air Personality” categories. This is the first time that will be done in the last five years. “This impressive list of nominees represents the best examples of talent with commendable audience relationships past and present,” Kitchin declares. “Each individual and show was selected after extensive deliberation by the steering committee. We are all looking forward to seeing the results as determined by our industry peers and listeners nationwide.” The four nominees to be voted on by a participant panel in the “Longstanding Local/Regional (20 years or more)” category are Tom Barnard (Minneapolis); Johnny Dare (Kansas City); Johnny Holliday (Washington, D.C.); and Ronn Owens (San Francisco). Those in the “Active Local/Regional (10 years or more)” category are “Big Boy” – real name Kurt Alexander (Los Angeles); Preston Elliot and Steve Morrison (Philadelphia); Eric Ferguson and Kathy Hart (Chicago); and Garland Robinette (New Orleans). The four candidates in the “Networks/Syndication (10 years or more)” category include Tom Kent (Cleveland); Dave Ramsey (Nashville); Diane Rehm (Washington, D.C.); and Michael Savage (San Francisco). Those in the “Longstanding Network/Syndication (20 years or more)” category are Bob Kevoian & Tom Griswold (Indianapolis); Bob Kingsley (Weatherford, Texas); “Marketplace” (Los Angeles); and Harry Shearer (Los Angeles). Nominees to be voted on by listeners nationwide in the “Music Format On-Air Personality” category are Delilah (Seattle); Elvis Duran (New York); Steve Harvey (Atlanta); and Ryan Seacrest (Los Angeles). In the “Spoken Word On-Air Personality” category, the nominees are Sean Hannity (New York); Clark Howard (Atlanta); Jim Rome (Los Angeles); and Dr. Laura Schlessinger (Los Angeles). Voting begins today; names of the winners will be revealed in just over three weeks (8/31). The induction ceremony will be held in three months (11/5) at the Museum of Broadcast and Communications in downtown Chicago
LA City Council Declares Saturday “KLOS ’80’s Rock Day.” In recognition of KLOS providing Los Angeles residents “with outstanding community service and classic rock music for over 45 years,” the Los Angeles City Council is honoring the Cumulus Media outlet by declaring this Saturday (8/8) “95.5 KLOS ’80’s Rock Day.” City Council president Herb Wesson (left) presented the official proclamation yesterday (8/5) on the Heidi & Frank Show. Wesson comments, “It is an honor to [offer] a warm congratulations to KLOS for withstanding the test of time and remaining the preferred rock and roll station for millions of rock music fans.” Program director Keith Cunningham acknowledges, “This is quite the honor – a grand tip-of-the-hat to a fun decade of music and the hundreds of talented men and women who have worked at KLOS over the past 45 years. KLOS rocked Los Angeles in the 1970s and furthered the British Invasion; then came Motley Crue, Guns ‘N Roses, and a whole new movement of rock that made the Sunset Strip so famous. KLOS was right there in the middle of the madness, throwing backstage parties and helping to break bands. We accept this honor on behalf of our listeners, current and former employees, and the rock bands that have always called KLOS home.” The station’s “Rock Week,” which started Monday, is extended through the weekend with “Pour Some ‘80’s On Me,” beginning tomorrow (Friday, 8/7).
NextRadio, CBI Team To Find Best Radio Spot. College students are encouraged to create/submit a 60-second radio spot, as NextRadio and College Broadcasters Inc. (CBI) join forces to find the “best-of-the-best in radio spot ads.” According to NextRadio president Paul Brenner, there are currently 50,000 – 70,000 radio spots that run each month supporting the NAB National Awareness Campaign, which launched in February; “this is a huge opportunity for students to have their radio spot played nationally among thousands of broadcast stations and heard by millions. We will get the opportunity to showcase rising talent for the radio industry.” CBI president Greg Weston comments, “CBI is thrilled to team with NextRadio to offer students from our media outlets this unprecedented opportunity to have their work appear in front of millions of listeners. Not only will the winners get national exposure for their talent, they will be able to take advantage of the educational opportunities available to them at the National Student Electronic Media Convention.” First-place winner will have his or her 60-second spot included in “flight four” of the NAB National Awareness Campaign, which starts October 1. The contest begins one week from next Monday (8/17) and will run through September 18; winners will be announced September 28.
iHeart(s) Radio Disney. Through a joint collaboration, Radio Disney launches on iHeartRadio. The two entities will support cross-platform promotion opportunities and develop joint broadcast/digital content initiatives. Radio Disney vice president of programming/general manager Phil Guerini notes that, “Radio Disney aims to continuously provide listeners with the music and entertainment they want in the most accessible way. By teaming up with iHeartRadio and its portfolio of platforms, we will be able to expand our content reach to millions of additional listeners that consume radio via digital streaming.” The chief product officer for iHeartRadio, Chris Williams, comments, “Radio Disney is a great addition to iHeartRadio. Increasing the variety of family friendly programming is a priority and Radio Disney is sure to be a hit with parents and kids alike.” In addition to a variety of on-air talent-hosted programming, Radio Disney features include “Insider,” “Take Over,” “Top 30,” “Saturday Night Party,” and “The Alli Simpson Show.”
Pluto TV Plucks Parks from Spotify. Los Angeles-based online video startup Pluto TV hires Spotify content chief Ken Parks to be its executive chair. Pluto TV chief executive officer Tom Ryan states, “The addition of a world-class executive like Ken Parks to Pluto TV is a transformative moment for our company. Ken’s experience in building a successful global entertainment service will be invaluable to us as we capitalize on our strong momentum to rapidly grow Pluto TV.” Parks – who will begin his new assignment in October – comments, “Pluto TV has an enormous opportunity to define the future of television and online video. As an advisor since 2014, I have had a front-row seat to the rapid growth the company has achieved so far – I am thrilled to join the team full-time.” According to The New York Times, Spotify chief strategy officer Stefan Blom will succeed Parks. Longtime music lawyer Parks joined Spotify in 2007 as the Swedish music streaming company’s first United States employee. Launched last year, Pluto TV has raised nearly $14 million in venture capital from investors including Universal Music Group. Its more than 100 channels include music videos, news, and comedy.
Hubbard Radio Officially Names McNeil and McMurray WDRV, Chicago Morning Hosts. The rumor of this pairing of Chicago radio personalities was reported by Windy City media writer Robert Feder last week but now Hubbard Radio makes it official, saying the Dan McNeil and Pete McMurray show will debut on classic rock WDRV “The Drive” in early March, replacing the retiring Steve Downes. Dan McNeil is, of course, a well-known sports talk personality in the market who comes to “The Drive” after a long stint with CBS RADIO’s WSCR which ended last June. Pete McMurray is currently evening host on Tribune’s news/talk WGN. In a press statement, Hubbard Chicago’s VP and market manager John Gallagher comments, “We are all very excited to bring two well-known Chicago personalities together with one iconic rock brand. ‘The Drive’ has maintained a dominant classic rock position in the market for many years. The departure of Steve Downes offered us the opportunity to reevaluate our mission and once again bring something unique to mornings.”
PPM Stats Are Forthcoming. January ratings information for Nielsen Audio’s 48 PPM markets will be released later today (Tuesday, 2/17) and we anticipate that the great majority of the more than three-dozen facilities that registered double-figures (6+) in the “Holiday” 2014 survey will return to single-digits. Most are adult contemporary outlets that transitioned to all-Christmas music between (roughly) Thanksgiving to Christmas Day. Led by iHeartMedia‘s adult contemporary outlet in Portland, the top ten (6+) share leaders from “Holiday” 2014 are: KKCW, Portland 18.1; KSFI, Salt Lake City 17.9; WEJZ, Jacksonville 17.9; WMJX, Boston 16.5; WMAG, Greensboro 16.1; KQQL, Minneapolis 15.3; WWLI, Providence 15.2; WRCH, Hartford 15.2; WBEB, Philadelphia 15.1; and WLIF, Baltimore 14.6. Finishing 11-20 are: KESZ, Phoenix 14.3; WLIT, Chicago 14.2; WJXA, Nashville 14.1; WWSW, Pittsburgh 14.0; WRAL, Raleigh 14.0; WNIC, Detroit 13.7; WYXB, Indianapolis 13.7; WASH, Washington, DC 13.6; WLTW, New York 13.5; and KSNE, Las Vegas 13.2. The next ten (21-30) are: WDUV, Tampa 13.0; WMGF, Orlando 12.8; KODA, Houston 12.5; WVKL, Norfolk 12.5; KOSI, Denver 12.4; WLTW, Middlesex 12.4; KOST, Los Angeles 12.2; WRIT, Milwaukee 12.2; WRVR, Memphis 11.5; and WRRM, Cincinnati 11.2. Remaining stations that hit double-digits (6+) in the “Holiday” 2014 report are: WDOK, Cleveland 11.1; KRWM, Seattle 10.7; KOIT-FM, San Francisco 10.6; WALK-FM, Long Island 10.6; WKQC, Charlotte 10.5; WLW, Cincinnati 10.3; and KQXT, San Antonio 10.0. All of the above are FM music outlets, with the exception of Cincinnati AM talker WLW. The first of four installments of RadioInfo‘s exclusive “Top Ten Takeaways” from the January 2015 results will be posted tomorrow (Wednesday, 2/18).
WWMX, Baltimore Personality Maria Dennis Successfully Battles Leukemia. The story of CBS RADIO jock Maria Dennis beating leukemia was featured recently on WJZ-TV, Baltimore. Dennis is the midday personality on adult contemporary WWMX, Baltimore “Mix 106.5.” It was less than a year ago that Dennis was diagnosed with leukemia. After chemotherapy treatment and a bone marrow transplant, she’s been given a cancer-free diagnosis. See the WJZ-TV story here.
RadioInfo Career Moves. Hit radio pro Lisa Paige is hosting a new syndicated CHR radio show being offered by Townsquare Media and its PopCrush.com brand. In addition to airing live in the evenings (7:00 pm to 12:00 midnight ET) on 38 Townsquare Media stations and via the company’s mobile app, it will be made available to other stations by Compass Media Networks. It’s being described as featuring “the hottest new pop music, as well as…trending entertainment and music information.”…..Denny More is hanging up his headphones after a long radio career, the last seven years of which have been spent co-hosting the morning show at Telemedia’s country WGRX, Fredericksburg, Virginia. His last day will be May 29.
Corporate Promotions at Cherry Creek Radio. At the corporate level, Cherry Creek Radio announces eight promotions that affect its 55 O&O stations in 15 Western U.S. markets. Moving up from regional director of sales to EVP and regional manager are: Kelley Cheatwood, John Craft, and Ron Korb. Group PD Bob Guerra rises to EVP/director of programming. Rita Calvin adds EVP stripes to her controller position. Travis Cronen is now VP/director of operations & IT; Ken Eklund is upped to VP of engineering, and Mary Sims becomes VP/director of accounting. Cherry Creek Radio president and CEO Joe Schwartz comments, “With our new financial structure in place and with the many plans we have to grow the company, I feel it was important to recognize these eight individuals for the outstanding work they have done for the company over their tenure at Cherry Creek Radio. Each of these promotions are for employees who have been with the company for at least eight years or more.”
Futuri Media Awarded Patents for Instant Alert and Listener Driven Radio. Calling it a “milestone for the company,” Futuri Media CEO Daniel Anstandig announces the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has issued a patent to him and the company’s chief technical officer Brian Seeders for its “Instant Alert” and Listener Driven Radio (LDR) technology. In a press release, Futuri Media says the patent describes a broad range of methods related to Listener Driven™ programming, including Instant Alerts, where listeners can receive e-mail, SMS text, and tweets moments before their favorite songs play on the air. This is also one of several U.S. and foreign patents and pending patent applications held by the company that describes and protects its unique interactive mobile and social apps. Anstandig comments, “Futuri has invested a significant amount in R&D related to interactive broadcasting as well as social and mobile technology for local broadcasters. The issuance of this patent is a milestone for our company and our many innovative broadcast partners, who have used this and our other technologies to drive ratings and revenue since the company’s launch in 2009.” Futuri CIO Brian Parsons adds, “Protection of our team’s innovations is critical. Our goal is to shape the future of media with social and mobile technology that makes it possible for consumers to embrace and personalize their favorite media brands. Whether it’s an interactive playlist, alerts for your favorite songs, a feature-rich mobile app, or social monitoring, we’re striving to create easy-to-use platforms that deliver innovative and proprietary high value for our partners.”
Duane Doobie, Jr.’s 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 personalities Bayley Brown and Matt James from WKLC, St. Albans, West Virginia “Rock 105”; internet sensation the Iceman; and rock jock “Zip” (aka Ryan Zipperian) of WAMX, Huntington, West Virginia “X106.3,” 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 (2/11) includes such names as: Madonna, Taylor Swift, Tony Bennett, Lady Gaga, Olly Murs, Travie McCoy, Gym Class Heroes, Andy Grammer, AronChupa, George Ezra, Rick Astley, Tori Kelly, Hunter Hayes, Who Is Fancy, Laura Doggett, One Direction, Death Cab for Cutie, AWOLNATION, POP ETC, Rhiannon Giddens, Iron & Wine, Willamena, Matchbox 20, Dexter Freebish, Toad the Wet Sprocket, Incubus, Marilyn Manson, Qiet, Robert Earl Keen, Kari Kimmel, Mo Pitney, Jillian Kohr, Michael Ray, J. Tex and the Volunteers, Black Mountain Shine, Hardwell, Harrison, Tough Love, and Lion Babe, among others. To check out this valuable information, please click here.
Emmis Wins Round One Against ‘Big Boy’; Court Grants TRO. In the intensely watched legal battle going on between air personality Kurt Alexander, a.k.a. Big Boy, and employer Emmis, the radio company has won the first round by securing a temporary restraining order preventing Big Boy from going to work for iHeartMedia’s KHHT, Los Angeles while the case makes its way through the courts. Obviously, Emmis is seeking a permanent injunction (plus damages) preventing Big Boy from going to iHM’s crosstown outlet. Emmis alleges Big Boy is violating the clause in his contract that gives Emmis the right to match competing offers. After receiving an offer from iHM to work in Los Angeles, Emmis matched the offer to keep him at KPWR, Los Angeles, but Big Boy informed Emmis he wishes to leave anyway. The next step is a preliminary injunction hearing scheduled for March 3.
Kruz Adds WZFT PD Duties. One-name WZFT “Z-104.3,” Baltimore assistant program director and afternoon drive talent Kruz is promoted to program director of the iHeartMedia CHR. He will continue doing his daily 3:00 pm – 7:00 pm “Z-104.3” air-shift. Vice president of programming Meg Stevens (who programs iHM Washington, DC country WMZQ) comments that, “Kruz is an exceptional on-air talent and leader. He is the perfect choice to lead ‘Z-104.3.'” According to Kruz, “I could not be more excited to expand my role at ‘Z-104.3’ and take the next step in my career. The iHeartMedia team in Baltimore is first-class and I look forward to leading [WZFT] to the next level of success.” Prior to joining WZFT, Kruz did nights for iHeartMedia Washington, DC CHR WIHT “Hot 99.5.” In addition, he has worked at CBS Radio Cleveland hot AC WQAL “Q-104” as well as Cumulus Media Detroit outlets WDRQ and WDVD.
More RadioInfo Career Moves. Chicago media writer Robert Feder is reporting that Hubbard Radio will replace the retiring Steve Downes with the duo of Dan McNeil and Pete McMurray in the morning drive slot on classic rock WDRV, Chicago “The Drive.” Feder reports that McNeil (formerly of sports talk WSCR) and McMurray (current WGN evening personality) will team up for the “McMorning Show.”
SU’s WJPZ, Syracuse to Hold 30th Annual Birthday Banquet. Alumni of Syracuse University’s student-operated CHR outlet WJPZ will gather on February 28 for the station’s 30th Annual Birthday Banquet. The WJPZ Alumni Association says that nearly 100 alumni and students will attend the evening celebration, which marks the 30th year of WJPZ on the FM band. iHeartMedia SVP of programming Jon Zellner will deliver the keynote address. Stephen Donovan (Class of ’95), morning host at WWLI-FM, Providence will emcee the event. During the weekend the Alumni Association will induct the 7th class into the WJPZ Hall of Fame. The inductees are: Eric Fitch (’85), now chief engineer at Entercom Boston. He was instrumental in getting the station onto the FM dial; Scott MacFarlane (’98), now investigative reporter for WRC-TV and NBC in Washington, DC. He served as producer for the Alumni Association’s documentary “Greatest Media Classroom” on the history of the station and also served on the Association’s board of directors. WJPZ Alumni Association president Josh Wolff states, “WJPZ is billed as The Greatest Media Classroom and with good reason: The scores of talented individuals who have graced its halls are simply unparalleled. Once again, this weekend unites students, alumni, and leaders in the industry to celebrate the past, present, and future of WJPZ.”
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 including this week, Tom Yates, KOZT, Fort Bragg, CA; Bayley Brown, WKLC, Charleston, WV; The Iceman; and Bill Phipps, WSIG, Mt. Jackson, VA; 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 (11/12) includes such names as: Gwen Stefani, Taylor Swift, Meghan Trainor, Kevin Kadish, Hoodie Allen, Ed Sheeran, Hozier, Slash, Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators, Slipknot, Weezer, Decemberists, Tove Lo, Lenny Kravitz, Papa Roach, Gunhill Road, Rodney Atkins, Maddie & Tae, Ronnie Fauss, Rhett Miller, North Country Flyers, Lorde, Kanye West, Mike Posner, Eau Claire, and Charlie Darker, among others. To check out this valuable information, please click here.
WXRT, Chicago’s John Farneda Calls it a Career. Announcing his retirement from CBS RADIO’s triple A WXRT, Chicago is operations manager and music director John Farneda. He’s been with the station since beginning as an intern in the early 1980s and has served in numerous roles with the station – including producing the ONXRT: Live from the Archives CD series culled from exclusive WXRT live performances that benefits local charities. Farneda wrote in a memo to fellow staffers: “I realized that I have achieved all my goals at the radio station and it is now time to set new ones. In 2015, I look forward to exploring new adventures in the music industry. I hope to share my decades of programming experience with friends wanting to innovate and entertain. In the meantime, I’m going to enjoy some well-deserved time off by traveling and spending more time with friends and loved ones.” His last day is November 26.
More RadioInfo Career Moves. Adding new duties in Rochester for iHeartMedia is A.J., who is now program director for the company’s hot AC WDVI “100.5 The Drive.” He’s been PD and afternoon personality at CHR WKGS, Rochester “Kiss 106.7” and the company’s Syracuse CHR WWHT “Hot 107.9.” He will continue in the programming role for WKGS and WWHT…..Matt Stone is the new APD and evening personality at Broadcast Company of the Americas-owned alternative XETRA, San Diego “91X.” Stone recently worked in the market at Compass Radio Group’s crosstown triple A KPRI as PD and afternoon host…..Erik Deatherage is leaving his morning show gig at Towson University-owned triple A WTMD, Baltimore to move to Fargo to start a family. The station is beginning a search for his replacement.
WMMS, Cleveland’s Rover Sets Up Fundraiser for Former Producer’s Family. Former producer of the “Rover’s Morning Glory” program on rock/talk hybrid WMMS, Cleveland – Rob Garguilo – exited that show recently to take a similar position with WHPT, Tampa’s Mike Calta program. Tragedy entered his life as his girlfriend Sarah and the couple’s children, 5-year-old Ben and five-week-old Serena were hit by a car while crossing a Largo, Florida street. The three are in critical condition in a Tampa hospital and Garguilo Tweets that Serena is on life support with no signs of brain activity. Now, Shane “Rover” French has set up a GoFundMe.com donation page to assist the family of his former producer. As of Wednesday morning, almost $18,000 has been raised for the family.
What Listeners Will Find Under the Tree. Each year, radio consultant Holland Cooke spends a week in early January in Las Vegas attending and reporting back to RadioInfo readers about the technology being displayed at the massive Consumer Electronics Show. 2015 will be no different and recently Cooke was in New York for the annual preview show called CES/Unveiled. He writes that the top five wish-list items for this holiday season are (in order): tablets, notebook computers, TVs, smartphones, and video game consoles. Find out more of what’s being touted as big consumer electronics spending decisions during the next year here.
Tough Q3 for Radio One as Radio Division Posts Net Revenue Decline of 8.1%. The company as a whole saw net revenue dip 5.3% but the radio division alone was hit worse as net revenue sank 8.1% compared to the same period a year ago on $112.2 million in net revenue. Radio One CEO Alfred Liggins comments, “Our radio business experienced a very soft quarter. We had a perfect storm of weak market revenues and soft ratings in our four largest markets, and political revenues were less than anticipated. We had some ratings challenges in Washington DC, Baltimore and Atlanta in addition to the new competitor in Houston. Management has taken steps to remedy these issues, including a format change in Houston from news to classic hip hop. The initial ratings for our new station, ‘Boom 92,’ are extremely encouraging, and should mean we reverse the annual $1.5 million of losses that we were incurring on the news format. Outside our top four markets, radio revenues for the third quarter were +1.5% against a flat market. Overall Q4 radio revenue is currently pacing 1.9% and I believe we will have positive momentum going into the New Year. Reach Media experienced a similarly weak third quarter, but is performing better in 4th quarter, consistent with the radio division.”
Dawg Gone. For the second time, “American Idol” judge-turned-mentor Randy Jackson says he is leaving the Fox singing competition, although this time he really intends to do so. In May 2013, Jackson – whose catch phrases include calling everyone “dawg” – indicated he would be departing. Several months later though, it was revealed he was staying on to coach the contestants; he succeeded Jimmy Iovine in that role. In a statement, Jackson notes, “After 13 seasons, I felt now was the perfect time to leave. I am proud to have been a part of a series that discovered some incredible artists and will go down in history as one of the most successful television shows ever. A true original, ‘Idol’ started it all. Onto what is next.” The show’s producers Fox, FremantleMedia North America and 19 Entertainment write that, “Randy has been such an integral part of ‘American Idol’ since day one, both as a judge and as a mentor. He has provided great advice and support, shaping the success of so many ‘Idols’ we have discovered over the years. We wish him all the best in his next chapter. Randy will always be part of our family and we hope he will visit from time to time.” It is widely believed that “Idol” host (and KIIS, Los Angeles “Kiss-FM” morning talent) Ryan Seacrest is returning, as are judges Jennifer Lopez, Keith Urban, and Harry Connick Jr.
Vance Joy Does Special Show for WDVD, Detroit and Select Fans. It was a special pre-concert show for Vance Joy fans who won tickets to his Detroit appearance from Cumulus Media’s CHR WDVD as morning hosts Blaine and Allyson invited them to an in-studio event. Those lucky listeners got to meet Vance Joy, hear an exclusive acoustic set and take pictures with the Aussie star. He’s pictured here (center) with Blaine (left) and Allyson (right).