Tag: "New York"

Thursday, December 18, 2014

| December 18, 2014

dastursharonSharon Dastur Rises to SVP of Programming Integration with iHeartMedia; Mark Medina to Program ‘Z100.’  Superstar programmer Sharon Dastur is taking an elevated role with iHeartMedia as SVP of programming integration on the company’s National Programming Platforms team.  Dastur’s accomplishments as program director of WHTZ, New York “Z100” are well known throughout the industry.  She’s also served as national CHR brand coordinator for the company and was programmer for Nickelodeon’s “Nick Radio” on the iHeartRadio platform.  The company says that in this new position, Dastur will “use her years of industryiheartmedia logo small experience to create cutting-edge programs that leverage the company’s assets for brands and partners and will assist with the program execution with artist, managers and labels.  In this role, she will develop cross-promotion partnerships between label groups and agencies, and in addition she will work with in-market programmers, lending her knowledge and ability to help refine current programs and initiatives.  She will also work together with the artist relations team on booking and talent negotiations for all iHeartRadio national events and industry events.”  Dastur comments, “When Tom [Poleman] and Clay [Hunnicutt] first approached me medinamarkabout this incredible new position, and knowing the direction where iHeartMedia is going, it seemed like the perfect next step in my career.  After more than 18 years at the world-famous ‘Z100,’ I am extremely proud of all of the accomplishments the team has achieved.  From guiding the station to its highest ratings and revenue, to recently coming off of our biggest and most successful ‘Z100 Jingle Ball,’ it will be exciting to take those things we’ve successfully built locally over the years and integrate them into the national platform and throughout our organization across the country.”  Taking over for Dastur as program director of WHTZ is Mark Medina, who will move from iHeartMedia’s Washington operations where he’s been programming CHR outlets WIHT, Washington “HOT 99.5″ and WZFT, Baltimore “Z104.3.”

parkerdonParker Picks Up Sacramento Duties. In addition to overseeing programming for iHeartMedia‘s six San Francisco stations, vice president of programming Don Parker expands his role to include the company’s six-station Sacramento cluster.  iHeartMedia executive vice president of programming Brad Hardin comments, “Don’s programming leadership in San Francisco has resulted in significant increased listenership and engagement for our brands.  The additional responsibility for our Sacramento stations is well deserved and I look forward to partnering with Don to grow our reach in Northern California.”  According to Parker, “Our Sacramento stations have evolved greatly.  With market veteran John Geary at the helm, our leadership team and talent in the Sacramento market is shaping up to be among the best in the business.  I am grateful to iHeartMedia for the amazing opportunity.”  The six Sacramento stations involved include country KBEB “B-92.5″; news/talk hybrid KFBK-AM/FM; rhythmic hot AC KHYL “The Beat of Sacramento”; adult hits KQJK “Jack-FM”; and talk KSTE “Talk 650.”  Parker joined iHeartMedia San Francisco in 2009 as operations manager.  He previously was NextMedia‘s vice president of programming and has been a PD in Los Angeles, Houston, Phoenix, Las Vegas and Fresno.

chiassonscottJournal Broadcast Group Names Chiasson GSM.  Radio sales pro Scott Chiasson is named general sales manager for Journal Broadcast Group’s Wichita operations.  He’s served as GSM for WQYK-FM/AM, Tampa and Cox Media/Cable TV in Lafayette, Louisiana.  He’s also worked with Metro Networks/CBS in Orlando and Premiere Traffic in Colorado and Florida.

More RadioInfo Career Moves.  Morning drive personality Bob Richards adds program director to hiskaplanrebecca duties at Cumulus Media’s country KBUL, Reno “NASH FM 98.1” where he’s been on air since 2009…..Also from Cumulus Media, Rebecca Kaplan is named promotions director for country stations KSCS and KPLX.  She joins Cumulus from iHeartMedia where she was promotions director at the Tampa station group…..At iHeartMedia, Dick Lewis exits the company’s New Orleans cluster where he’s been market manager for the past 10 years.

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bonesbobbySusan G. Komen Recognizes Bobby Bones for Charitable Efforts. Nationally syndicated country morning personality Bobby Bones is being named to the 2015 class of Pink Tie Guys for his charitable work fighting breast cancer.  The Pink Tie program honors influential leaders who help mobilize, energize and engage audiences in the breast cancer movement through their role within the community, within their organizations, and through their personal involvement.  Bones’ Premiere Networks-syndicated show recently raised $50,000 for the charity as part of an on-air bet with two-time Academy of Country Music “Top Male Vocalist” Jason Aldean, who agreed to play a charity show with Bones’ band The Raging Idiots if the show could raise the money.  The 2014 Pink Tie Guys will be honored at the Pink Tie Party on February 24, 2015 at Jonathan’s Green Hills in Nashville.

heos logoiHeartRadio App Added to Denon’s HEOS System.  HEOS is the wireless, multi-room sound system marketed by electronics manufacturer Denon.  Today, iHeartMedia announces it and Denon have reached an agreement for the iHeartRadio digital platform to be made available on the system.  The audio product is pretty simple: Consumers purchase one of three available models that connect to their existing home wireless network and they are able to bring content from various platforms into their homes.  If the HEOS webpage is accurate, Denon has already signed on other digital platforms to be available on the system, including Pandora, Spotify, TuneIn and Rhapsody.  iHeartRadio president Darren Davis comments, “We are excited to partner with Denon Electronics to bring iHeartRadio into even more homes with the HEOS music player.  Its sleek and compact design combined with its premier stereo sound makes it perfect for enjoying your favorite iHeartRadio stations anywhere in the house.”

madisonrisingMadison Rising Song to Benefit Operation 300.  Rock band Madison Rising – heralded as “America’s most patriotic rock band,” is helping to support the charitable group Operation 300 with a portion of the proceeds from the sale of their latest release, “Soldier’s Christmas.”  Operations 300 hosts adventure camps for the young children of fallen military men and women.  It was founded by the family of a Navy Seal Aaron Vaughn who lost his life fighting in Afghanistan.  The camps provide an opportunity for the youngsters to participate in activities that embody the spirit of adventure that characterized the lives of their absent parents.  Madison Rising lead vocalist David Bray (pictured here) – a US Navy Veteran, joined by the rest of the band – says, “The entire group wholeheartedly supports this charitable endeavor.”

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dorseyterryDickeypicLegendary Dallas Jock Terry Dorsey Honored.  Renowned Dallas country radio personality Terry Dorsey (right) takes in the framed photo compilation being presented to him by Cumulus Media president and CEO Lew Dickey (left) on Wednesday (12/17).  As RadioInfo reported last week, Dorsey is retiring from the radio business after a 46-year career – 33 years of which were spent in the Dallas market and the last 26 at KSCS.

Friday, December 12, 2014

| December 12, 2014

donovanjaydeJayde Donovan Joins Todd Pettengill for Mornings on WPLJ, New York.  Just a few days after announcing she was leaving Cox Media Group’s CHR WPOI, Tampa “Hot 101.5,” Jayde Donovan is named morning drive co-host on Cumulus Media’s New York hot AC WPLJ.  Donovan joins Todd Pettengill for the newly re-named “Todd and Jayde (In the Morning” program, effective January 5.  Cumulus New York vice president and market manager Kim Bryant says, “We are thrilled to have a talent like Jayde on ‘PLJ.  She is genuine, smart and beautiful.  The New York market is going to fall in love with her.”  Inwplj addition to her radio work, Donovan has worked as a correspondent for WTVT-TV, Tampa “Fox 13,” with the weekly segment “Hot Happenings” on “Good Day Tampa Bay” and the daily segment “Hot Dish” on Dish Nation.  She also hosted the television show “The Cue” on WOFL-TV Orlando “Fox 35.” in Orlando.  About her new gig, Donovan says, “I still can’t wrap my head around the dream job in front of me!  To co-lead a show in the number one market in the world is more than a dream come true.  Huge thanks to John Dickey, Mike McVay, Gillette, and my legendary radio friend Todd Pettengill for bringing me on the team.  Can’t wait to get to work!”

richmcclain logoRichard Deaver Exits KOSP, Springfield After Traffic Citation Controversy.  Neither side is talking too much about air personality Richard Deaver’s exit from Mid-West Family Communications’ CHR KOSP “92.9 The Beat,” but it comes almost a month after he complained on the air about treatment he alleges he received from the Springfield police during a traffic stop.  The on-air talk about Deaver’s traffic citation caused the Springfield Police Officers Association to issue a boycott of the radio station.  Neither Deaver nor Mid-West Family would say too much to the Springfield News-Leader and would not say if the matter played a direct role in Deaver’s exit.  You can read the News-Leader piece here.  For now, Deaver’s co-host Dawn McClain will host the morning program solo.

More RadioInfo Career Moves.  The new afternoon personality at CBS RADIO’s alternative KITS, San Francisco “LIVE 105” is Greg Beharrell.  He comes to the Bay Area from his most recent gig at Corus-owned rocker CFOX, Vancouver, BC.  Beharrell has also worked at alternative outlets CFNY, Toronto “102.1 The Edge” and CFEX, Calgary “X92.9.”…..Govia returns to the Peoria market where he’ll be the evening personality on Alpha Media’s new CHR WNGY “Energy 102.3” beginning December 15…..Heather Stupeck joins the team at Jerry Duncan Promotions as secondary promotion manager.  Stupeck is a former digital media assistant and on-air personality at WKDQ and sister station WDKS in Evansville, Indiana.

nightbeforeCBS RADIO Announces ‘The Night Before’ Concert in Phoenix.  The “Night Before” concert will take place on January 31 – the night before the NFL’s Super Bowl being played at University of Phoenix Stadium on February 1.  CBS RADIO announces the lineup for this show will include country stars Jason Aldean, Dierks Bentley, and Florida Georgia Line.  The news of the show was announced on CBS O&O KMLE, Phoenix by Dierks Bentley today (12/12) as he said, “I’m excited to be part of a huge night in country music the night before the biggest event in sports…in my hometown!  We’re about to take tailgating in Phoenix to a whole new level.”  CBS SVP of strategic events and partnerships Amy Stevens adds, “There’s no bigger sporting event than the Super Bowl, and what better way to celebrate the greatest championship in the world than with a star-studded concert event The Night Before.  We had an amazing inaugural show in 2014 with the Red Hot Chili Peppers in New York, and we’re thrilled to present the next installment in this emerging tradition with some of this generation’s greatest country acts.”

AMSLennonMaisyLennon & Maisy Visit ‘America’s Morning Show.’  Stars of ABC-TV’s hit series “Nashville,” Lennon & Maisy, stopped by the NASH Campus in Nashville where they chatted and performed on “America’s Morning Show.”  The duo performed their new Christmas single, “Christmas Coming Home,” and their YouTube hit cover of The Lumineers’ “Ho Hey.”  Pictured here (from left to right) are:  Lennon Stella, Maisy Stella, Terri Clark, Chuck Wicks and Blair Garner.

marksidWPHT, Philadelphia Celebrates Sid Mark’s 58th Anniversary.  News/talk outlet WPHT, Philadelphia is honoring the 58th anniversary of the broadcasting career of Sid Mark – host of the legendary “Sounds of Sinatra” program.  The sold-out, special event is taking place tonight (12/12) from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm at Parx Casino’s 360 Lounge.  The evening will feature a special live broadcast of the “Sounds of Sinatra” program with special guest Frank Sinatra, Jr.  Today also marks what would have been Frank Sinatra’s 99th birthday.  Marc Rayfield, SVP/market manager for CBS RADIO Philadelphia says, “WPHT  is proud to pay tribute to a living legend.  Sid Mark has entertained generations of listeners through the years and it’s wonderful to be able to honor the legacy of Frank Sinatra and celebrate Sid’s amazing career at the same time.”  Mark launched the “Sounds of Sinatra” show in Philly 57 years ago.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

| November 5, 2014

stefaniBabyDon'tDuane 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 (11/05) includes such artists as: Gwen Stefani, Meghan Trainor, Taylor Swift, Heather Jeanette, OK Go, Gunhill Road, Julia DeMato, Who, George Ezra, DEC3, You+Me, Lolawolf, Lenny Kravitz, King Tuff, Smashing Pumpkins, Dallas Smith, 32 Below, Wade Bowen, Kane Brown, High Valley, Talking Heads, Golden Pony, Tenterhook, Christina Perri, Addal, among many others.  To check out this valuable information, please click here.

kinosianmikePPM Analysis: Urban Adult Contemporary.  This month, RadioInfo managing editor and West Coast bureau chief Mike Kinosian presents his analysis of three urban formats: urban AC, urban contemporary and urban-rhythmic oldies.  The October PPM data from Nielsen Audio indicates the month was pretty good to the urban AC stations subscribing to the ratings company’s service: 60% of those stations went up from September to October, led by Entercom’s WVKL, Norfolk “95.7 R&B FM,” which posted a 2.2 share jump.  In this report, see more September to October share fluctuations, comparisons to PPM ratings from October of last year, market rank for urban AC stations, and market share for the past six ratings periods.  See Mike Kinosian’s entire story here.

pollockseanSeattle’s ‘107.7 The End’ Adds Millennial Marketing Specialist.  The Entercom alternative station brings Sean Pollock aboard to serve in the newly created position millennial marketing specialist.  Pollock comes to Entercom from a 10-year stint in the marketing field working with both national and local clients at Remer Inc. in Seattle.  Entercom Seattle VP and general manager Jack Hutchinson comments, “We are thrilled Sean has joined our team where he will immediately begin working with our clients on all of their marketing needs targeted at the Millennial consumer.  This is part of our 360 Degree Immersion Concept that will help our advertisers unravel the Millennial consumer decision-making process, especially how they select products or services.”

gunhillrdCoverThe Remarkable Return of GUNHILL ROAD.  Tomorrow (11/5) marks the official release of the brand new 19-track album by the early seventies band GUNHILL ROAD titled, Every 40 Years (Gunhill Road Records).  Pop music and radio historians remember the group as a “one-hit wonder” for the infectiously clever song “Back When My Hair Was Short” (Kama Sutra).  However, album rock radio veterans remember them as a great three-man band of the golden era that produced two outstanding albums yielding several “turntable hits” (“42nd Street,” “Sailing,” “She Made A Man Out Of Me,” and more) that simply fell through the cracks as the years rolled by.  In its heyday, GUNHILL ROAD was a regular at the legendary NYC nightclub, the Bitter End sharing the stage with some of the biggest name acts of the era.  After touring into the mid-seventies, the group finally called it quits with each of the three members going their separate ways.  Glenn Leopold became a successful writer of stories and music for some of TV’s best-known animated features; Steve Goldrich became the accomplished CEO of a thriving manufacturing firm; and Paul Reisch continued as a professional musician and painter.  Inspired to record again after a brief, well-received appearance three years ago at a benefit concert for their former manager (and Bitter End owner) Paul Colby, the trio finally decided to give it another shot, if for no other purpose than their own satisfaction.  Exactly one year ago, they went into the studio where they became immersed for months in an outpouring of decades worth of pent up creativity and emerged with a massive collection of 19 meticulously honed songs covering a wide range of contemporary styles from CHR to triple-A.  Standout tracks include the album’s first single, “Selling Apples” (featuring Paul Shaffer on the Hammond B3), a reggae-flavored tune that deals with overcoming the anxiety of unemployment during tough economic times and “Everything Passes” – a Beatles-ish reflection on “When I’m 64” told from today’s perspective of someone who’s “traveled far and wide but is still a boy inside.”  (NOTE: All RadioInfo subscribers will receive a link to download the entire album in tomorrow’s email blast.)  The fascinating story about the unlikely re-emergence of GUNHILL ROAD after four decades — written by RadioInfo managing editor Mike Kinosian — has been posted today (11/4).  To read it in its entirety, please click here.

gikofskyirvMr. G Retires from WCBS-FM, New York.  Revered New York City meteorologist Irv Gikofsky – known affectionately as Mr. G – announced his retirement from his gig on CBS RADIO’s classic hits outlet WCBS-FM.  Gikofsky has been serving as the morning meteorologist on the station for the past 37 years, working with such talent as Harry Harrison, Dan Taylor and Scott Shannon.  Gikofsky will continue to report the weather on WPIX-TV’s 5:00 pm and 10:00 pm newscasts.

radioleague logoJournal Broadcast Group Adds More Digital Christmas Formats.  Last week RadioInfo wrote about the expanding Christmas music offerings from pure plays like Pandora and satcaster SirusXM.  Now, Journal Broadcast Group reports that “following last year’s record-breaking audience on ‘The Christmas Station’ digital radio stream,” the company is launching two addition Christmas stations: “Country Christmas” and a contemporary Christmas station named “Hitsmas.”  Last year “The Christmas Station” streamed worldwide on Journal Broadcast Group websites and apps, via Radionomy and through the TuneIn app.  It was ranked as the top Radionomy-powered station in the United States on Christmas day.  J. Pat Miller serves as director of marketing & innovation for Journal’s Milwaukee Radio Operations, and he says, “When listeners need a little shot of holiday cheer they can click over to one of our Christmas music stations.  Adding three channels to the Radio League app allows the music focus that streaming music listeners expect.  From Bing Crosby to Mannheim Steamroller, it’s all there!”

Magnum Communications Closes on Wisconsin Station Acquisitions.  The sale of four radio stations in Wisconsin from Bliss Communications – publisher of the Janesville Gazette and parent company of Racine Broadcasting and West Bend Broadcasting – to Magnum Communications has closed.  Bliss transferred news/talk WRJN and AC WEZY in Racine and country WBWI and news/talk WBKV in West Bend to Magnum for $2.25 million.

mightymetacousticflashbackMighty Met Acoustic Flashback to Benefit Pat ‘Paraquat’ Kelley.  Next month the “Mighty Met Acoustic Flashback Benefit Concert” will be held at the Canyon Club in Agoura, California to benefit longtime Los Angeles radio personality Pat “Paraquat” Kelley.  A jock on the legendary album rock station KMET, Kelley was diagnosed in 2003 with Primary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis.  Kelley is in the advanced stages of the disease and award-winning musicians, KMET alumni and friends are bringing their talents and efforts together for a one-night special event in recognition of Pat’s unstoppable spirit and courage.  Confirmed performers include George Thorogood, Janiva Magness, Paul Barrere, Waddy Wachtel, Peter Stroud, Dan Navarro, Kiki Ebsen, Michael Ann Azoulai, Bill Champlin, Prescott Niles, Christina La Rocca, Julian Sha-Tayler, Riley Biederer, Angeles Band and special guests to be announced.  KMET alumni Cynthia Fox and Jeff Gonzer will be among the evening’s emcees and there will be a special appearance by SiriusXM host and legendary Southern California radio personality Jim Ladd.  In addition to an entire evening of very special acoustic performances and collaborations, a silent auction featuring rock ‘n’ roll royalty donations, including an Eagles personalized guitar, and an exclusive getaway vacation.”  Kelley’s wife Melody Rogers-Kelley comments, “Pat and I are deeply touched and honored by this out pouring of love.  Borrowing a line from the Beatles, ‘There’s been some time in preparation, a splendid time is guaranteed for all.’”  The event is December 14 at 7:30 pm and tickets are on sale now through Ticketmaster.  For updates, up to the minute info go to www.canyonclub.net.  Contact for the event: Rich Piombino, 404-512-2850.

Friday, October 31, 2014

| October 31, 2014

ppmunitRound Four of October PPM Data Released.  The fourth of four rounds of October 2014 PPM data from Nielsen Audio has been released for 12 markets including: Austin, Milwaukee, Indianapolis, Providence, Raleigh, Norfolk, Nashville, Greensboro, West Palm Beach, Jacksonville, Memphis, and Hartford.  The survey period was September 11 through October 8.  You can find all of the numbers from subscribing stations here.  Meanwhile, RadioInfo managing editor Mike Kinosian presents his “Ten Takeaways” from this batch of ratings below.

Ten Takeaways

  • Austin – For the past four ratings periods, KKMJ “Majic 95.5″ has been in the three-share range (3.9 – 3.1 – 3.8 – 3.7), but the Entercom adult contemporary outlet erupts with a +1.2 to 4.9, its most potent (6+) share since “Holiday” kkmj logo2013’s 10.1. In the process, “Majic” catapults from twelfth to fifth. Successive significant declines result in Emmis adult hits KBPA plummeting by a combined -2.2 (9.4 – 8.6 – 7.2), taking “Bob-FM” to its lowest (6+) share since Holiday’s 6.4. Even so, “Bob” remains in first-place (6+) for thekbpa tenth consecutive month. iHeartMedia rhythmic CHR KPEZ “The Beat” declines by nine-tenths (5.3 – 4.4), finding itself in a four-way tie at #7 – down from a tie in September at #4. September marked the first time since June 2013 that iHeartMedia-owned KASE “Today’s Country” was not in the runner-up slot. After 15 straight appearances at #2, KASE slipped to third, having been bounced out by similarly-programmed sibling KVET-FM “All-Time Country Favorites.” Unchanged in their rankings from September, KVET-FM is flat at 6.9 (second), but KASE drops seven-tenths to 6.1 (third).
  • Milwaukee – Following three successive (6+) down-trends (5.0 – 4.2 – 4.0 – 3.7), WKKV “V-100.7 Jams” scored a wkkv logoone-half share gain in September and adds a whopping +1.4 in October (4.2 – 5.6) to inch up from a three-way tie at seventh to fifth. Over and above that, 5.6 is the best-ever 6+-stat for the iHeartMedia urban contemporary facility. Although they remain at #2 and #6, respectively, Journal talker WTMJ (8.7 – 9.2) and Entercom CHR WXSS “Kiss-FM” (4.8 – 5.3) progress by one-half share each. Despite a full-share decline (11.6 – 10.6), iHeartMedia’s country WMIL “FM 106.1″ is the market’s pacesetter for the fifth straight month. Flat at #3, co-owned WRIT “Oldies 95.7″ (-.5 from September) falters for the fourth consecutive sweep (7.7 – 7.1 – 7.0 – 6.9 – 6.4).
  • Indianapolis – The last time Cumulus Media‘s WJJK “Classic Hits 104.5″ reached #1 was July, but bolstered by a +.9 (6.6 – 7.5) it exchanges places with Emmis adult contemporary WYXB “Soft Rock B-105.7″ (7.2 – 6.9, -.3, first to wjjk logothird). After progressing by nine-tenths in July, WYXB country sibling WLHK “Hank FM” followed up with a +.6. “Hank” faltered by seven-tenths in September, but storms back with awlhk +.9 in October (6.4 – 7.3), inching up from fourth to second. The market’s largest (6+) month-to-month improvement though is credited to Radio One gospel WTLC-AM “The Light,” which breaks up back-to-back 1.8 performances (6+) with a full-share boost to 2.8 (#16 to #13). It is the best performance for “The Light” since February (also 2.8). In August, WZPL plunged by -1.2 to 6.1. The Entercom CHR rebounded with a +.6 in September to return to the runner-up slot (from #6), but “Indy’s Hit Music Station” regresses by -1.4 (6.7 – 5.3), sinking from second to ninth.
  • ProvidenceCumulus’ WPRO-AM adds six-tenths to September’s 5.2 to inch up from seven to sixth; 5.8 is the wpro logotalk station’s strongest 6+-stat since March 2013’s 6.0. Co-owned CHR WPRO-FM (9.0 – 8.6, -.4) finishes first for the ninth time in the last ten ratings surveys. Remaining steady at #4, their adult contemporary sibling WWLI “Lite Rock 105″ notches its fourth successive up-trend (6.5 – 6.8 – 7.1 – 7.6 – 8.1), yielding a cumulative +1.6. This is the most potent 6+-share for “Lite Rock” since “Holiday” 2013, when it registered 11.5. iHeartMedia rocker WHJY follows up September’s -.5 with a -.9 (7.1 – 6.6 – 5.7) to slide from fifth to seventh.
  • Raleigh – On the strength of a one-share improvement (3.5 – 4.5), Curtis Media Group CHR WPLW “The Pulse” moves up from eleventh to ninth. Not only does cluster-mate WQDR “Today’s Best & Most Continuous Country” wqdr logomake it nine straight months at #1 (6+), it logs a robust +1.2 and is back in double-digits (9.4 – 10.6) for the ninth time in the last 12 survey periods. Meanwhile, iHeartMedia‘s WNCBwplw “B-93.9 – New Country” has its string of eight consecutive (6+) progressive trends come to a halt (1.5 – 2.1 – 2.8 – 3.1 – 3.3 – 4.0 – 4.2 – 4.4 – 4.8), as it drops one-half share to 4.3 (tenth to eleventh). Radio One urban AC WFXC “Today’s R&B and Classic Soul” dials up a +.6 to 6.1, surging from eighth to fifth. Following a one-half share gain in September, Capitol Broadcasting‘s WCMC “ESPN 9.9. The Fan” tacks on another +.5 (2.7 – 3.2) and is steady at #12. Ironically, Curtis Media Group adult hits WBBB “Radio 96.1″ and iHeartMedia CHR WDCG “G-105″ each trend 6.5 – 5.7 (-.8, fifth to seventh).
  • Norfolk – This marks the second straight month that a Norfolk station has hung out a month-to-month +2.2 (6+). In September, it was iHeartMedia CHR WNOH “Now 105,” which nearly doubled its 6+ share (2.4 – 4.6). Now it is wvklEntercom urban AC WVKL “95-7 R&B” doing the honors. Continuing its market dominance, WVKL (11.1 – 13.3) finishes first for the 27th straight survey period and 52nd time in 54 PPM sweeps. This is the 13th occasion in the last 14 ratings periods that “95-7 R&B” has been in double-digits (6+). Regarding “Now 105,” it returns about two-thirds of September’s +2.2 (4.6 – 3.1, -1.5)wowi and falls from sixth to tenth. Urban contemporary sibling WOWI posts a +.8 to 9.0 and maintains its runner-up status. Owing to a hearty +.9 in September, Max Broadcast Group Holding‘s WVSP “ESPN 94.1″ applied the brakes to three straight (6+) downward trends (2.6 – 2.3 – 2.1 – 1.6). It adds seven-tenths (2.5 – 3.2) to enter the top ten (#12 to #9). After freefalling by -1.7 in September, iHeartMedia rhythmic hot AC WMOV “MOViN 107.7″ regresses by another six-tenths (3.1 – 2.5), dipping from tenth to eleventh. It is the station’s lowest (6+) share since January’s 2.3. For the fifth consecutive month, Sinclair-owned country WUSH; adult hits WNOB; talk WNIS; alternative WROX; and talk WTAR are not in print.
  • Nashville – The sports format makes noise in “Music City USA,” as Cumulus Media‘s WGFX “The Zone” registers a colossal +1.8 (6.6 – 8.4) to progress from fourth to second. The last time the flagship of the Tennessee Titans was wgfx-fm logoin eight-share territory was roughly three years ago (8.1 in November 2011). While not nearly as dramatic as what “The Zone” does, Cromwell’s WPRT “The Game” nonetheless advances by one-half share to 1.5 (#19 to #17). Midwest Communications adult hits WCJK “Jack-FM” dials up a +.7 (5.3 – 6.0) and escapes a three-way tie at sixth for a fifth-place tie. In the country arena, Cumulus’wcjk WSM-FM “Nash Icon” (5.4, sixth to seventh) and iHeartMedia‘s WSIX-FM “The Big 98″ (4.8, tenth to ninth) each gain one-tenth, while Cumulus’ WKDF “Nash FM 103.3″ (4.8, sixth to ninth) drops one-half share. Ryman Hospitality Properties-owned classic country WSM-AM, which declined by one full-share in September, drops another six-tenths (2.0 – 1.4); it moves from #15 to #18. Also falling by six-tenths (8.0 – 7.4) is iHeartMedia CHR WRVW “The River,” which relocates from second to fourth. Following four successive down trends for a combined -2.4 (7.2 – 7.0 – 6.0 – 5.7 – 4.8), Cumulus urban AC WQQK “92-Q” is up one-half share to 5.3), bumping up from ninth to eighth. Although remaining in first-place for the 30th consecutive monthly, Midwest Communications adult contemporary WJXA “Mix 92.9″ drops one full-share (11.0 – 10.0). The three-share advantage it enjoyed over September’s #2 “The River” is now reduced to 1.6 over runner-up “The Zone.”
  • Greensboro – The streak of five straight (6+) increases (5.1 – 5.8 – 6.0 – 6.9 – 7.5 – 8.3) for iHeartMedia‘s WTQR “New Country Q-104.1″ ended in August with a -.6, followed by a -.9 in September. This time last month, it trailed wtqrEntercom-owned WPAW “The Wolf” by 2.2 shares (6+), but owing to an impressive +.9 by “Q-104.1″ (6.8 – 7.7) and a stunning -1.6 by “Wolf” (9.0 – 7.4), WTQR (fifth to fourth) overtakes format rival WPAW (second to fifth) by three-tenths. “Wolf” was up or flat in five successive sweeps through August (7.5 – 7.5 – 7.8 – 7.9 – 8.2 – 9.3), prior to dipping by three-tenths in September. Urban AC cluster-mate WQMG “The Best R&B and Old School” (11.1 – 11.5, +.4) finishes first for the tenth successive ratings period; it is its third straight time in double-digits (6+). After back-to-back months at 6.1 (June and July) and then consecutive months at 5.8 (August and September), Dick Broadcasting CHR WKZL “The #1 Hit Music Station” dials up a +.6 to 6.4, advancing from seventh to sixth. Despite a six-tenths gain to 4.7, iHeartMedia CHR WMKS “100.3 Kiss-FM” ranks ninth for the 18th successive time.
  • West Palm Beach – No sooner had WRMF (second to first) dropped six-tenths (8.0 – 7.4) than the hot AC improves by +1.4 to 8.8, its strongest 6+-showing since June 2013’s 9.3. Digity Media-owned WRMF takes over the top spot wrmffrom iHeartMedia adult contemporary-classic hits hybrid WOLL “Kool 105.5,” which precisely relinquishes the nine-tenths it gained in September (8.0 – 8.9 – 8.0). In July, “Kool” (first in September to second in October) ended WRMF’s consecutive #1 run at four. WRMF sibling WIRK “South Florida Country” enjoys a whopping +1.2 (4.5 – 5.7) to progress from fifth to third. Stuck on 3.9 in August and September, co-owned WMBX “X-102.3″ notches a +.8 to inch up from seventh to fifth. After declining by nine-tenths in August, iHeartMedia’s WKGR rebounded in September with a +.6 – but “Gator 98.7 – The Palm Beach’s Rock Station” plummets by -1.4 (5.3 – 3.9); WKGR had ranked third for six straight months – but tumbles to seventh.
  • Jacksonville – Steady at #2 for the fourth straight sweep, Cox Media Group‘s WAPE “Jacksonville’s #1 Hit Music Station” gains seven-tenths (6.5 – 7.2), while talk sibling WOKV improves by one full-share (5.1 – 6.1) to tie yet another wejz logoCMG property – classic hits-oldies WJGL “The Eagle” (6.0 – 6.1, +.1) – at #3. Down or flat the past six survey periods (6+) for a combined -3.2 (8.0 – 6.6 – 6.1 -5.9 – 5.9 – 5.3 – 4.8), iHeartMedia-wokv logoowned WQIK “Jacksonville’s Country” posts a hearty +.9 to advance from eighth to sixth. Conversely, Renda Broadcasting‘s WGNE “Gator Country,” which packaged three straight up trends (4.5 – 5.4 – 5.5 – 6.2) before September’s one-tenth loss, falters by -1.2 to 4.9 (third to seventh). Until renewing as a Nielsen Audio subscriber in July, WEJZ “Lite 96.1″ was unlisted for 30 straight months. The Renda adult contemporary property finished first (6+) in July (8.9), August (8.4), and September (9.8). It does so again, however, October’s 8.6 reflects a -1.2 from September.

RadioInfo Career Moves.  At the Wilks Broadcasting Columbus operations, Stiller is named OM and program director for the company’s classic rock WLVQ, country WHOK and sports talk WZOH.  He was most recently with Federated Media in Fort Wayne programming the company’s sports stations and co-host of the PM drive show on WFGA “106.7 The Fan.”…..New general managers are named by Salem Communications for its San Diego and Sacramento station groups.  Dale Hendry relocates to San Diego to lead the team there. He moves south from the company’s Sacramento cluster where he’s been serving as GM.  Taking over Hendry’s role in Sacramento is Mark Durkin who is promoted from his director of sales position.  And Scott Hamilton becomes general sales manager in Sacramento…..Chris Atticus, a.k.a. Crate, takes over the afternoon drive show on iHeartMedia’s alternative WOLT, Indianapolis “Alt 103.3.”  He’ll also serve as imaging director for the cluster.  Atticus replaces Deuce in afternoons on WOLT.

wwyy logoConnoisseur Media Flips WWYY, Lehigh Valley to Alternative.  The Belvidere, New Jersey-licensed station drops its active rock format and re-brands from “107 The Bone” to “The New Spin Radio, 107.1…The Valley’s Alternative.”  Connoisseur Media’s WWYY serves the Lehigh Valley and Poconos area in Pennsylvania and Western New Jersey.  Core artists for the new format will include: The Black Keys, Foo Fighters, Green Day, Weezer, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Imagine Dragons and more.  Cluster GM Rick Musselman states, “We conducted an intense local radio market research project, and it clearly stated there was significant demand for an alternative station in our area.  It’s a format that will attract a wide variety of listeners right away.  The Millennial generation will embrace this station.  It’s their music, and they’re extremely passionate about it.  Our advertisers – both existing and new – will reap the benefits of the loyal and long listening habits of these alternative music partisans.”

journalcommunicationsJournal Reports Radio Revenue Up 5.1% in Q3.  Bucking the industry-wide third quarter trend, Journal Communications is reporting a downright outstanding quarter for its radio and television division.  On the radio side, operating earnings were up 16.1% and the net revenue figure of $21.6 million saw a percentage hike of 5.1%.  Television net revenue was up 22.8% but publishing fell 5.4%.  The irony here is that Journal is entering into a complex deal with E.W. Scripps that would put the combined TV and radio properties into one company and the publishing platform into another called Journal Media Group.  Journal Communications CEO Steve Smith states, “Journal benefitted from continued growth in television retransmission revenue along with significant political and issue advertising spending in a number of our markets.  Our focused broadcast sales efforts grew both television and radio revenue, excluding retransmission and political, by approximately 3% and drove television and radio digital revenue up 22% and 31%, respectively.”  Journal has fared better than other radio station owners in the political advertising arena by luck of the draw – it owns stations in states and markets with tight and high-profile races and ballot issues.

siriusxm with holly‘Tis the Season!  The annual move to all-Christmas music is beginning to happen around the country.  Some of the early adopters include Equity Communications-owned WEZW, Wildwood Crest, New Jersey and SummitMedia’s WVEZ, Louisville – both adult contemporary stations.  The digital pure plays and SiriusXM are heavily into the Christmas music business this year as well – and they don’t have to drop their regular programming to do so.  According to The New York TimesBen Sisario, Pandora will feature 35 holiday-themed channels this year.  SiriusXM just announced it will present eight different holiday channels (an increase from years past) – including a country Christmas station, a Hanukkah channel and a Latin seasonal station – in addition to the channel featuring traditional Christmas music.  As a subscription service, SiriusXM has the added benefit of being able to present these stations commercial free.

fullmetaljackieWQRS, Olean Adds ‘Full Metal Jackie.’  The Envision Networks-syndicated heavy metal show “Full Metal Jackie Radio” is added to the program schedule at Pembrook Pines Media Group’s WQRS, Olean “98 Rocks.”  The station will air the show at 10:00 pm on Friday nights.  Program director Chris Russell comments, “As we take ‘98 Rocks’ to the next level, it made perfect sense to add ‘Full Metal Jackie’ to our lineup.  No one in the market delivers the type of rock we do, and Southern Tier listeners REALLY know that the only home for REAL ROCK is WQRS-FM.”

B&OLive showBig Bax & O’Brien Bash in Springfield.  The long-running, highly-successful morning talk team of Bax & O’Brien (Mike “Bax” Baxendale and John O’Brien) of Saga Communications’ classic rocker, WAQY (Rock 102), Springfield, Massachusetts presented their second annual “Thursday Night Live” show last night (10/30).  The bawdy, irreverent comedy spectacular played before a sold-out house of more than 200 core fans at downtown Springfield’s prestigious City Stage theater whoharrisongoldsteinBOsmall paid $27 each for the honor of being entertained by a slew of guests and performers that included salty crooner Red Peters & the Alan Pinchloaf Singers, show producer/newsman/sidekick Steve Nagel, a “mystery guest,” comedic appearances by several high-profile local sponsors as well as hilarious video drop ins from Lionel of LionelMedia.com and show regular, Fitsy. Pictured above (l-r):  Bax & O’Brien on stage.  Pictured at right (l-r): Saga Communications EVP Steve Goldstein and RadioInfo publisher Michael Harrison with a photo bomb appearance of associate publisher Matthew B. Harrison taken at a selfie machine set up in the theater lobby.

Monday, October 27, 2014

| October 27, 2014

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blandkjKJ Bland Re-Signs with KRNB, Dallas.  At Service Broadcasting’s Dallas urban contemporary outlet KRNB “Smooth R&B 105.7,” midday personality KJ Bland signs a new, two-year contract to remain with the station.  Brand manager and program director Kevin Gardner says, “KJ is a passionate, multi-platform personality and a social-media savvy entertainer who easily turns listeners and clients into friends and fans.  We are happy to have her continue her winning contributions to the ‘Smooth R&B 105.7’ team and the Service Broadcasting family.”

k297boiHeartMedia Debuts ‘Tailgate Country 103.7’ on Translator.  There’s a new country format in Portland as iHeartMedia debuts “Tailgate Country 103.7” on translator K297BO.  The 34-Watt signal is licensed to Portland, sits on the city’s southeast side and its primary signal covers a fair portion of the metro.  The company says the station will feature contemporary country artists such as Brad Paisley, Lady Antebellum, Jason Aldean and Florida Georgia Line.  The station will present the format commercial free.  SVP of programming Brad Hardin says, “‘Tailgate Country’ features the hottest contemporary country artists and no commercials.  It’s the perfect station for crankin’ up while sitting on your tailgate and watching the Ducks pull out another win.”

envisionnetworks newEnvision Networks’ Westar Music Library Gets Updated Site.  In an announcement  from Envision Networks, the company’s Westar Music Library gets a website update for the service that features a streamlined experience for users to search, organize and download thousands of royalty free music tracks and sound effects.  The company says the Westar Music commercial library currently offers more than 11,000 royalty-free music tracks sourced from the broadcast industry standard as well as more than 113,000 sound effects, with more constantly being added.  Westar Music sales manager Peter Alexander says, “With new features and benefits that our users asked for, we believe the new WestarMusic.com is quite simply the most seamless, easiest to navigate website available for high quality production music and professional sound effects.”

swifttaylorMore Taylor Swift Promotion Happening This Week.  With today’s release of Taylor Swift’s 1989 album, the PR machine behind the country-turned-pop starlet kicks into another gear.  Last week RadioInfo reported the album release-related appearances by Swift across the iHeartMedia platforms.  Now, we learn Swift will be a telephone guest on Westwood One’s syndicated “Nights Live with Adam Bomb.”  She’ll also appear on SiriusXM’s Town Hall series where she’ll appear with a select group of listeners for a Q&A with SiriusXM Hits 1 personalities Nicole Ryan, Stanley T, Rich Davis and Ryan Sampson.  The show will air live on Wednesday (10/29) at 2:00 pm ET.

WW1FlaGaFoxFlorida Georgia Line Visit WW1’s Ryan Fox.  It’s always cool to have one of the hottest acts in the country on your network but it’s especially cool if that act is hosting the new awards show your company is producing.  Westwood One’s Ryan Fox (center) poses for a shot with Florida Georgia Line’s Tyler Hubbard (left) and Brian Kelley (right) after the duo appeared on his “Now with Ryan Fox” show on Hot Country and Mainstream Country Local formats produced by the network.  Florida Georgia Line is hosting the “American Country Countdown Awards” on Fox TV on Monday, December 15 live from Nashville’s Music City Center.  Westwood One will have a big backstage presence at the ACC Awards as part of its exclusive Red Carpet Radio event coverage.

elsasdennisStudioLegendary Rock Radio Personality Dennis Elsas Bringing His “Rock ‘n’ Roll Never Forgets” Live Multimedia Show to NJ.  After more than 40 years of hosting radio shows on great radio stations in the Northeast, veteran rock DJ Dennis Elsas (pictured here) is still going strong.  The longtime favorite of New York-area music radio fans that remember him from his major presence at groundbreaking album rocker WNEW-FM during its glory days, is still spinning quality sounds during PM drive at triple-A formatted WFUV in the Big Apple and is heard nationally on SiriusXM Satellite Radio’s “Classic Vinyl” program.  Well known for his creative programming skills and history-making interviews with some of music’s greatest legends, the man described by Michael Harrison as “one of pop culture’s finest raconteurs” has been wowing live audiences around the New York Metropolitan area for years with an in-person multimedia show titled “Rock ‘n’ Roll Never Forgets.”  In it, he plays excerpts from key conversations he had back in the day with such legends as John Lennon, Elton John, Jerry Garcia and so many more, highlighted by rare video clips and airchecks of legendary broadcasts.  He also shares his insights and memories of growing up in one of the greatest radio markets of all, New York City, where he heard some of the best top 40 DJs of all time.  Next stop for this traveling extravaganza will be its first visit to New Jersey – this coming Saturday, November 1 at the Montclair Art Museum at 7:00 pm.  For more information, please click here.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

| October 23, 2014

swifttaylorTaylor 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 logoWQBU 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.

1971Michael 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.

core 4WQRS, 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 logoWCSX, 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.

Monday, October 20, 2014

| October 20, 2014

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MIreunion logo“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 theMIreunion johnny and ron 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 MIreunionJonGeorgeKappRoxytext 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 jonpaulscott@gmail.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.)

MIreunionPaulJerryPaul 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).

adamsmarkiHeartMedia 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.’”

lamadridcarlosEntercom 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.”

cazianclaudineClaudine 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.

lordeBrettjerseySF 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 kfog logoalternative 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.

radioexpress logoRadio 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.”

mccoyjaanWestwood 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.”

Monday, September 15, 2014

| September 15, 2014

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kinosianmikePPM Analysis: Rhythmic CHR and Rhythmic Hot AC.  RadioInfo managing editor Mike Kinosian presents this analysis of the rhythmic CHR and rhythmic hot AC formats based on the latest August 2014 PPM data from Nielsen Audio.  In addition to tracking the performances of these stations over the past six PPM surveys, the piece also takes a look at fluctuations from the July PPM, changes compared to the August 2013 PPM survey, station market rank, plus a comparative chart tracking the performances of mainstream CHR, rhythmic CHR and rhythmic hot AC.  See Mike Kinosian’s complete story here.

wittmayerjustinWittmayer Named Cumulus San Francisco Market Manager.  The new vice president and market manager for Cumulus Media’s San Francisco station group is Justin Wittmayer who joins from Clear Channel’s Miami cluster where he was VP of sales.  Wittmayer also worked for Clear Channel in the Bay Area as GSM and market manager for that company’s San Jose stations.  Cumulus SVP Gary Pizzati says, “Our business in San Francisco is very complex.  The assortment of formats, which now include Nash FM, coupled with three major sports teams requires a leader who understands how to maximize revenue and cash flow from each.  Justin not only understands what it takes to drive revenue, he knows how to run a business.  His years of experience in the Bay Area will serve us well with the relationships he’s established in the ad community and with recruiting top talent.  We are thrilled to welcome Justin to the Cumulus family – now at the helm of our San Francisco operations.”

biakelseyBIA/Kelsey Study Indicates Social Media an Important Means of Promotion for Small and Medium Businesses.  The study from BIA/Kelsey is called Local Commerce Monitor and the full findings of the study will be presented to clients attending the firm’s LEADING IN LOCAL: SMB Digital Marketing conference taking place September 22-24, in New Orleans.  What’s relevant to radio is the growing importance of marketing via social media to small- and medium-size businesses.  The study surveyed 546 local businesses and determined that almost 75% report using social media to market their businesses with those businesses using 21.4% of their marketing budgets on social media.  As suspected, Facebook is the dominant form of social media, with 55.1% of SMBs reporting they have a Facebook page for their business.  LinkedIn came in second at 31%.  But other social media that are being used for marketing by SMBs include Pinterest, Instagram and Twitter.

virgintimCumulus Begins Rebuilding ‘The Loop’ in Chicago.  On Friday, Cumulus Media said goodbye to nine-year afternoon personality Patrick Capone, morning man Maxwell and other staffers and brought in former WLUP-FM, Chicago jock Tim Virgin for the afternoon drive show.  Also joining the station formarielyndsey middays is Lyndsey Marie, who comes from her most recent gig at the company’s rock WNNX, Atlanta, and Pyke, who is the new evening personality.  The station is beginning the search for a new morning show.  EVP, programming and content John Dickey says, “This is a part of the continuing evolution of WLUP.  Chicago is a city known for great personalities and this new lineup continues that tradition.”  Station PD Wade Linder adds, “Chicago has a high expectation for the personalities on ‘The Loop,’ so we’re thrilled to have Tim, Lyndsey and Pyke join us.  Now, we start our search for Loop’s next amazing morning team.”

maxxmelissaKLOS, Los Angeles Ups Maxx to Middays.  Giving program director Derek Madden more time to focus on PD duties is part of the reason evening personality Melissa Maxx moves up to the midday show at Cumulus Media’s LA rock outlet KLOS.  Maxx has been with KLOS since 2010 and was previously executive producer and VJ for the first made-for-mobile music video channel, Altitude.  She has also appeared in numerous TV shows and commercials as both a host and an actress.  Before moving to Los Angeles in 2005 she was the co-host of the nightly “Deek and Melissa Show” on WBCN in Boston.  Madden says of Maxx, “Melissa has done a tremendous job in nights for the past year, doing a heavily interactive show that has garnered a really unique fan base.  I’m excited to share this show with an even larger audience during daylight hours.”

blackleycarsonCarson Moves to CC’s Pittsburgh Country Station.  Filling in the air talent at Clear Channel’s new Pittsburgh country station WPGB-FM “Big 104.7,” the company moves Carson Blackley from its Raleigh CHR outlet WDCG “G105” to become the midday jock.  The station, which flipped from talk this summer, will air Premiere’s Bobby Bones in morning drive.

Giessinger Named GSM for CC Minneapolis.  Taking the role of GSM for Clear Channel Media and Entertainment’s Minneapolis station group is Grant Giessinger.  He joins the company from CBS RADIO’s Minneapolis cluster.  He’s worked for Clear Channel in the past, having served as sales manager and VP/GM for the company’s North Dakota stations.

gunhillroadHarrisonEvery 40 Years.  That’s the amazingly apt name of the soon-to-be released third album of the legendary band GUNHILL ROAD whose first two LPs (Mercury and Kama Sutra) were “turntable” favorites back on FM rock radio in the early 1970s.  Pop music observers will remember the one AM radio hit single these collections yielded titled, “Back When My Hair Was Short,” which still gets airplay on classic hits stations around the country including SiriusXM’s “70s on 7.”  After a colorful few years of concerts, airplay and television appearances, the trio faded from the scene in the mid-70s going their separate ways into different fields of endeavor.  However, they remained friends and in contact during the decades that followed.  To make a long (but fascinating) story short, GUNHILL ROAD recently got back together and went into the studio where the band recorded an album of 19 brand new original songs.  RadioInfo publisher Michael Harrison, who along with then-station mates Richard Neer, Dennis Elsas and the late Pete Fornatale, championed the group back in his days as morning show host on WNEW-FM, New York (1972-73), describes this new music as “a pop cultural archeological treasure yielding 19 category-busting songs that would have been considered major league even back in the day when the music really mattered on so many levels.”  Harrison further describes GUNHILL ROAD as “one of the greatest bands from the golden era of album rock that, for reasons having nothing whatsoever to do with their talent, didn’t make it to the really, really big time that their art so richly warranted.”   Harrison says, “It is a miraculous turn of events that we will all have another chance to experience GUNHILL ROAD when Every 40 Years is released next month – absolutely miraculous!”  Meantime, the group played a very special pre-release reunion concert this past Saturday night (9/13) to a packed, wildly enthusiastic house of Boomers and Millennials at New York City’s legendary club The Bitter End where it all began for them more than four decades ago.  The show was introduced by Harrison and filmed by movie director Eric Goldrich’s A2A Productions for inclusion in a feature-length retrospective set for release in 2015 chronicling GUNHILL ROAD’s journey from the early days of the Greenwich Village music scene to their unlikely 21st century rebirth.  Interesting note:  Back in 1972, to show appreciation for playing their album and first single “42nd Street,” GUNHILL ROAD presented then-22 year old DJ Mike Harrison with a homemade gold record with the inscription, “Hearing you play 42nd Street on WNEW-FM is worth a million to us.”  According to Harrison, “That was the first ‘award’ I had received in the music business and it absolutely blew me away.  Even though I went on to receive dozens and dozens of RIAA certified gold and platinum records in my career that followed, nothing touchedgunhillroadoldpic my heart as much as that homemade gold paint-sprayed, drugstore-framed plaque – and it hung on my wall for decades and decades to follow right next to Bruce Springsteen, Supertramp and Fleetwood Mac.”  Pictured above and left at Saturday’s concert is the band presenting Harrison with a new homemade plaque with a gold paint-sprayed CD of the forthcoming “Every 40 Years” album.  Pictured (l-r):  GUNHILL ROAD main songwriter/lead singer/lead guitarist Glenn Leopold; keyboardist/singer Steve Goldrich; Harrison; and bass guitarist/singer Paul Reisch.  Stay tuned to RadioInfo for a major feature story about the odyssey of GUNHILL ROAD by Mike Kinosian and the release of Every 40 Years coming in October.  For more information about this most unusual band, please click here.  Pictured at bottom right (from left to right) are Glenn Leopold, Steve Goldrich and Paul Reisch during the first incarnation of GUNHILL ROAD.

wgee Duke logoWGEE, Green Bay Goes Country with DUKE FM.  With the flip of Midwestern Communications WGEE-FM, Green Bay from rock to country, the station is now airing the Envision Networks and Kroeger Media Inc. country format DUKE FM.  Midwest Communications VP of programming Jeff McCarthy says, “Country music continues to progress with boundless new artists and songs, but we can’t ignore the amazing artists and songs that have come before.  With country leader ‘Y100’ supplying today’s hits, ‘DUKE FM’ generates a home for the legends of country music throughout Northeast Wisconsin.  ‘DUKE FM’ and ‘Y100’ are a wonderful complement to each other and we’re honored to have them on the same team.”

wzlr logoCox Dayton Classic Hits Outlet ’95.3 The Eagle’ Goes Commercial Free on Weekends.  Taking a page from CBS RADIO’s “92.3 AMP Radio” in New York which went commercial free on weekends during the summer, Cox Media Group classic hits station WZLR, Dayton “95.3 The Eagle” is clearing its air of commercials on Saturdays and Sundays in hopes people will listen on weekends to the commercial-free station, decide they like the music and listen more during the week.  The company’s VP of marketing and branding, Nick Roberts, tells the Dayton Daily News that he doesn’t know of any other station in the country that is currently doing this.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

| September 11, 2014

cookeholland‘The Golden Age of Audio Consumption.’ Reporting from Indianapolis, media consultant Holland Cooke summarizes some of the sessions he’s attended at both the RAIN Summit and the 2014 Radio Show.radioshow14  Edison Research president Larry Rosin is quoted referring to the current era as the “golden age of audio consumption” noting that, according to his company’s research, Americans spend roughly a fourth of their day listening to some form of audio.  While this may be true, how this falls out for AM/FM radio is open to interpretation.  Is it an opportunity for AM/FM radio or just a sign that other forms – read: digital – are poised to overtake AM/FM’s dominance in the near future.  That is THE topic being discussed at the NAB/RAB-produced Radio Show this week.  Read Holland Cooke’s entire column here.

americasgreatesthitsScott Shannon Syndicated Classic Hits Show to Debut.  In a program development from CBS RADIO, WCBS-FM, New York morning personality and radio legend Scott Shannon will host a new weekend, syndicated classic hits show titled, “America’s Greatest Hits.”  The program will debut the weekend of October 18-19 on 10 of CBS RADIO’s classic hits O&Os across the country, including on WCBS-FM.  It will also be distributed nationally by United Stations Radio Networks.  The four-hour show will be highlighted by artist interviews, song countdowns, one-hit-wonders and commentary from Shannon himself, among other features.  CBS RADIO EVP of programming Chris Oliviero says, “Scott has established himself as one of the leading authorities on music from the 60s, 70s and 80s, and is among the best storytellers to ever grace the airwaves – it’s why he’s been so successful anchoring the lineup at WCBS-FM.  Today’s announcement takes what he does on a day-to-day basis and expands it to millions of listeners nationwide.”

kimberybeckbroweeseClear Channel Flips Classic Rock ’95.1 The Brew’ to ‘Radio 95.1’; Oldies WODX Becomes ‘107.3 The Bull.’  Two format flips and talent changes take place at Clear Channel’s Rochester cluster where classic rocker WQBW becomes “Radio 95.1” – a format the company is calling “an innovative rock and personality-based station.”  Coming to the station for afternoon drive there after being let go from their most recent role at Entercom’s crosstown rock WBZA “98.9 The Buzz” are Kimberly & Beck.  The two were fired from WBZA after commenting on a news story about the city’s health care plan paying for gender reassignment surgery in a way management felt was “hateful.”  In addition to their 2:00 pm to 7:00 pm shift at WQBQ, Kimberly & Beck will host a one-hour evening show on sister news/talk WHAM at 8:00 pm.  And, flipping from oldies to country is WODX which becomes “107.3 The Bull, Rochester’s New Hit Country.”  The station is playing 10,000 songs in a row commercial free and will feature Premiere NetworksBobby Bones show in morning drive later this fall. Pictured here with WQBW morning personality Brother Weese (center), are Kimberly (left) and Beck (right).

More RadioInfo Career Moves.  At the San Antonio Alpha Media cluster, Mark Landis exits his program director position for CHR KTFM and adult hits KJXK “Jack FM.”  Prior to Alpha Media’s purchase of the stations, Landis was Border Media Partners’ director of English programming…..At Journal Broadcast Group’s country WCYQ, Knoxville “Q100.3,” Kevin King is named program director for the station, taking over for Mike Hammond who recently exited the radio business.  King leaves ADX Communications‘ country WYCT, Pensacola “Cat Country 98.7” where he was operations manager to move to Knoxville…..Clear Channel brings Josh Klinger to Washington from the company’s Atlanta operations to serve as evening host at alternative WWDC “DC101.”…..Alpha Media names Rachel Davis promotions director for its Richmond cluster.  Davis moves south from her previous post at Albany Broadcasting where she was also promotions director.

dickeyjohnzacksangPartying with Westwood One.  The 2014 NAB/RAB Radio Show is the scene of a lot of industry parties, including the one last night presented by Westwood One.  Pictured here are Cumulus Media EVP, content and programming John Dickey (left) and Zach Sang, host of the WYD Media-produced and WW1-distributed “Zach Sang and the Gang” syndicated CHR program (right).  At the party, attendees were entertained by country acts Chase Rice and Montgomery Gentry, numerous WW1 personalities were on hand to mingle with guests and network partners.  The network gave away a pair of tickets to Super Bowl XLIX and a pair of tickets to the NCAA Final Four.

trainorechosmith‘PLANET 102.3’ Brings Meghan Trainor and Echosmith to Corpus Christi for ‘Back to School’ Concert.  CHR outlet KKPN, Corpus Christi is treating listeners to a free double-bill concert featuring Meghan Trainor and Echosmith on Wednesday, September 24.  The Convergent Broadcasting-owned station says, “This caliber of talent is almost unheard of in a market the size of Corpus Christi.  And to add to that, ‘PLANET 102.3’ is putting on the show absolutely FREE to our listeners!”  Trainor’s “All About the Bass” and Echosmith’s “Cool Kids” are in heavy rotation on CHR stations across the country.  The station is giving away free tickets to the concert at remote broadcasts throughout the market beginning next week.

joynerMcDsTom Joyner Sets Lunch Record at Jackson Affiliate.  The power of the Tom Joyner show was on display as the ReachMedia-syndicated personality broke a record at a McDonald’s drive-thru in Jackson, Mississippi serving more than 400 cars – shattering their previous record according to local McDonald’s owner MyJoy Inc – and serving up free lunch to his listeners from radio station WKXI, Jackson “Kixie 107 FM.”  Joyner (pictured here at the drive-thru window) and his crew are on a tour of his affiliate stations and are visiting four this week including KMEZ, New Orleans; KQXL, Baton Rouge; and KJMS, Memphis.  The show is visiting other affiliates every other week through November.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

| August 26, 2014

nashicon logo“Nash Icon Is to Country What Hot AC Is to CHR.” That was among the nuggets gleaned from an approximately 45-minute conference call conducted yesterday (Monday, 8/25) by Cumulus Media executive vice president and co-chief operating officer John Dickey, who gave an overview of the company’s new country offering and an overall status report of the format. Opining that today’s mainstream country is really “top 40 country,” he declares most mainstream country stations play very little gold product.  “It is extremely current-driven – there is no ‘hot AC’ in country.”  An oldies faction exists in thedickeyjohn format, but as Dickey explains, that’s classic country.  “Every week in country radio, we wake up to a potentially new #1 hit record.  As that music works its way up and down country radio stations, there is no repository for that music to exist in markets.”  It is his contention that most country facilities have libraries with no more than 150 songs in active rotation, which is “very reminiscent” of CHR.  “Most top 40 stations are under 100 [gold titles], and those are very tight libraries,” Dickey remarks.  In the next year or two, he anticipates that more non-country stations will question why they should be the third or fourth station in a format when they, “can be a broad-based coalition format very much like ‘Jack-FM’ did when it came on the scene.”  While likening Nash Icon to adult hits “Jack-FM,” Dickey “firmly” believes Nash Icon possesses “a lot more staying power, better fundamentals, and much less gimmickry.  A Nash Icon station can carve out huge audiences all to itself.” Dickey concedes this will take time to prove; Cumulus has already converted 15 of its stations into the Nash Icon format.  “Many people will take notice and see this as a viable format,” he predicts.  Starting “almost immediately,” Cumulus’ Westwood One will offer Nash Icon to affiliates, with Dickey pointing out the format will be up-and-running in the fourth quarter. “It is time for country to have a hot AC version of the country format.”

Country Artists React Favorably to Nash Icon. In fact, Cumulus Media executive vice president and co-chief operating officer John Dickey maintains country artists have “phenomenally welcomed” the company’s Nash Icon approach to the country format and the Nashville community has done “back-flips over it.”  Nash Icon is already brooksgarth“resonating big-time,” he states, and it “will only snowball.”  Artists are “grateful” that there is “interest again in what they do,” Dickey comments.  “They are not only appreciative but anxious to see this platform play out.  They are interacting with large, loyal audiences they have built up over the years.  They know this demand is out there.”  Many country artists have been “frustrated” with where the country format is today and Dickey contends, “It is difficult for them to participate,” but Nash Icon allows them “to have a place alongside the newer, younger guns” so they may “showcase what they have done in a contemporary way.”  Stressing that Nash Icon is not about nostalgia, retrospective, or what he calls “ESPN‘s version of ‘Where Are They Now,?’  Dickey explains, “These artists are alive, well, and they look great.”  Some or most are approaching age 50.  “They are in peak shape and at the peak of their careers creatively; they still have a lot left in the tank,” he emphasizes.  Achieving radio airplay has been a “dead-end street” for them so he imagines that they are “sitting on” a lot of music,chesneykenny since there is no motivation for them.  “Not too long ago, even Garth [Brooks] went through that about radio airplay.”  The difference of where Nash Icon is today and where Cumulus could be six months to a year from now with it is, in Dickey’s opinion, several solid ratings stories.  Representative artists of the Cumulus format, which has launched on 15 of the company’s properties, include the Dixie Chicks, Faith Hill, Judds, Kenny Chesney, Martina McBride, Reba McEntire, Tim McGraw, Shania Twain, Mary carpentermarychapinChapin Carpenter, and Lorrie Morgan.  “If you were to add up all the artists in a 25-year span [mid-1980s to the early-2000s] who have sold more than one million tickets and have had six to ten #1 hits, you would be amazed at how deep the list goes,” Dickey comments.  As a result, he does not expect Nash Icon will be at a loss for music, artists, or depth.  “This is a very contemporary format in its own right,” notes Dickey, who envisions it as being competitive among 25 – 34s and that it will “find a sweet spot” among 30 – 50s.  “It will be a very efficient format for advertisers and I expect it will have a similar male/female balance as country has today – perhaps a little more female.”  He looks for it to attract comparable cume to that of mainstream country.  “Just as hot AC is, we are a current-driven format.  Right now, we are about 25% current-driven and depending where the music comes in, over time, we might be as much as 40% current-driven.” When “exciting” country music comes out, Dickey states that Nash Icon will play it.  He made the comments yesterday (Monday, 8/25) in an industry conference call.

Dickey Delivers Country History Lesson. The country format has experienced an amazing journey the last 25 – 30 years.  Cumulus Media executive vice president and co-chief operating officer John Dickey emphasizes that this is “an historic time” for the format.  Until the mid- 1980s, he recounts that – in most markets – country was not well-received by the advertising community.  “Very little was understood about the power of the audience,” notes Dickey who conducted an industry conference call yesterday (Monday, 8/25) to discuss his company’s Nash Icon format.  “Stereotypes of the format were alive and well.  Most people tried to position the format as ‘America’s favorite music.’  As the music started to transform, the business of country started to come full circle.”  Calling country one of the “most explosive formats in our business,” Dickey says it reaches approximately 100 million people in the United States.  “I am not making up or throwing out numbers,” he insists.  “If you take unduplicated cume of all country stations in the United States across 200+ [rated] markets, you get close to 85 – 90 million country listeners on that merit alone.  Country is probably the largest format in terms of appeal and market share.”  One of the strongest messages Dickey gave yesterday was that country is the last format of its size that has not fragmented.  “Rock has fragmented in so many different directions that it has created a state of emergency in that format – rock is in a tough spot,” he cautions.  For some reason, country has “resisted the urge to fragment.”  Extremely current-intensive, country is among the “last great multi-generational formats that is programmed as top 40.”  As far as broadcast radio is concerned, Dickey states that, “Artists who helped propel foundationally the business of where it is today have – by and large – lost their place in the format’s relevancy.” Cumulus, he says, is taking “a very active role” in the business of country.  It was not a question with Dickey of if country would fragment, it was a matter of when it would do so and he proclaims, “That time has come.”  The entire idea around Nash Icon, he emphasizes, is “to create a parallel universe” in the country format.  “It is not a [flanker], but another platform for those artists [who] were extremely prolific in the mid-1980s to the early-2000s.  That music is testing exceptionally well.”  Those particular country singers are Facebook fans and Twitter followers yet Dickey explains, “They are not represented in the format today.”  Dickey recalls that years ago with “hot country” or “thunder country” stations were “trying to make differences based on being more aggressive attitudinally than mainstream country.”  Nash Icon, he says, is based on the “appeal and attraction of artists and the low-burn of their music.”  When those factors “conspire and come together, you have the makings of a format that has legs.  It can be built on a solid foundation and can stand side-by-side with mainstream country.”  Dickey does not believe Nash Icon will cannibalize country’s total share, but instead will grow it.  “Two well-programmed country stations going head-to-head grow the country share in a market – they do not take it away,” he maintains.  “We have seen it in Detroit with our station and CBS Radio; it is the same thing in Minneapolis with CBS Radio and Clear Channel.”  Specifically, Cumulus’ WDRQ “Nash FM – Detroit’s New Country Music Leader,” ranks #17 July 2014 (2.5), while CBS Radio’s WYCD “Detroit’s #1 for New Country” finishes #4 (6.0).  CBS Radio Minneapolis’ KMNB “Buz’n Country” finishes #6 July 2014 (6.6), while Clear Channel Minneapolis-owned KEEY “K-102 – Today’s Country” is #5 (6.7).  “Nash Icon, the hot AC version of country, will only help accelerate the process,” Dickey forecasts.  The radio industry is often chastised for not taking chances and he admits that, to some extent, there is no incentive to do that.  “It is a tough environment out there; everyone is trying to be as rational as possible.  They want to minimize risk.  We are confident that over time, there will be a successful fragmenting and growing of the wonderful [country] format.  It is going to be very exciting for the business of country to have these superstar artists back in the game.”

houstonlanceHouston to Boston from Baltimore. Early next month, 18-month WPOC, Baltimore program director Lance Houston will transfer from the country outlet to Boston in a similar capacity at Clear Channel‘s co-owned WBWL “The Bull – Boston’s New Hit Country.”  Clear Channel Boston vice president of programming for media and entertainment Dylan Sprague enthuses that WBWL “has found its visionary – Lance is that perfect combination of a great programming strategist, incredible musicologist, and successful on-air talent.  His vision, creativity, positive attitude, and energy make him the perfect choice to lead our new station.”  Houston – who will also do 10:00 am – 2:00 pm on-air duty at “The Bull” – comments, “I am excited and ready to lead the team in Boston into a battle.  America’s greatest city deserves a young, hip country station.”  For six years, Houston was assistant program director and afternoon drive personality at Atlanta’s WUBL “The Bull.”  His past programming assignments have been for WYGC, Gainesville and WBAM, Montgomery Alabama; he began his country career in 1995 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama at WTXT.  Dance-formatted WEDX “Evolution” transitioned to country WBWL “The Bull” a little more than two months ago (6/13).

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adamslisaAdams Returns to Seattle to Program “Click.” Boise, Idaho KAWO “Wow Country,” hot AC KCIX “Mix 106,” and adult contemporary KXLT “Lite-FM” operations manager and program director Lisa Adams relocates to Seattle to program Hubbard hot AC KLCK “Click 98.9.” Hubbard Radio Seattle market manager Marc Kaye comments, “We are thrilled to have Lisa back in our hallways.  The time she spent here [2005 – 2006] was highly successful.  Her spirit and work ethic permeated the building.  We know with her programming skills and thorough knowledge of the market, she is the right person to take ‘Click 98.9′ to the next level.”  Adams remarks, “I am so incredibly excited and blessed to be able to return to a city I love and work with such a talented team.  Here’s to an amazing and successful journey with a wonderful company.”  Prior to her OM/PD duties at Townsquare Media Boise, Adams worked for CBS Radio Portland, and in Seattle for Entercom, Infinity, and Sandusky Radio (which was acquired by Hubbard).

mallorytamikaCumulus Names Mallory Community Affairs Director at ‘Radio 103.9’ in New York.  Nationally renowned civil rights activist Tamika D. Mallory has been appointed community affairs director for Cumulus Media’s WNRB, New York “Radio 103.9.”  The company reports that by working with the station’s local management and on-air hosts, as well as nationally syndicated programs including “The Tom Joyner Morning Show” and the D.L. Hughley show, “Mallory will help deepen Radio 103.9’s relationship with local listeners and continue to connect the station with the community the station serves through a series of citywide community-service-oriented programs and events.”  In addition to this post, Mallory will continue operating her strategic planning firm Mallory Consulting.  Cumulus New York VP and market manager Kim Bryant comments, “I am proud to be working with somebody like Tamika Mallory who is so respected and involved with the community.  I look forward to her positive influence on our station, community and Cumulus as a whole.”

julianomikeJuliano Named DOS at Greater Media Detroit.  Jumping from Entercom’s Boston cluster to the Detroit operations of Greater Media, Mike Juliano is named director of sales for the company’s Motor City properties that include rock WRIF, classic rock WCSX and sports talk WMGC “Detroit Sports 105.1.”  Greater Media Detroit market manager Steve Chessare states, “We are absolutely thrilled to have Mike join the Greater Media Detroit family.  His vast experience, combined with his leadership skills and passion for our industry, made him the perfect choice to take our sales team to the next level.”  Juliano comments, “In our business there are very few companies like Greater Media and very few leaders like chairman & CEO Peter Smyth and market manager Steve Chessare.  From the top on down, the leadership in this company is as solid as it gets.  I am looking forward to working with the Greater Media Detroit team to put the assets that we possess to work providing results-oriented solutions for our clients.”

lopezmarioClear Channel Re-Ups with Mario Lopez.  The new deal includes the continuation of the “On with Mario Lopez” program syndicated by Premiere Networks (on which Lopez’s wife Courtney serves as co-host).  But the new deal – terms not disclosed, of course – also will mean an expansion of the iHeartRadio Countdown weekend program designed for hot AC stations.  The company says that beginning next month, Lopez and Courtney will welcome a different A-list artist or celebrity each week to count down the top 20 hot AC songs on iHeartRadio’s Ultimate chart, which incorporates iHeartRadio airplay, top weekly song/artists from user-generated iHeartRadio Custom stations, weekly listener “thumbs-up,” social and sales data.  Lopez will also continue to work with Clear Channel on a variety of multimedia projects and events, including the 2014 iHeartRadio Music Festival.

alt983 logoNew Alternative Format Appears on Nashville Translator and HD Channel.  The newest alternative-formatted station to hit the air from Clear Channel Media + Entertainment is in Nashville and can be heard on the HD2 channel of classic rock WNRQ and on translator W252CM at 98.3.  Dubbed “ALT 983,” the station will feature artists including: The Black Keys, Kings of Leon, Jack White, Coldplay, Pearl Jam, Green Day, Imagine Dragons and The Lumineers.  The signal will also be the FM home for Vanderbilt University football.  CCM+E Nashville OM Michael Bryan says, “The Music City has been missing this very important genre of music, much of which is made right here.  We’re excited to offer Nashville a new home for everything alternative.”

More RadioInfo Career Moves.  At Clear Channel’s Memphis cluster, Eric Jewell is named the new director of sales.  Jewell comes to Memphis from his most recent gig at Entercom’s Gainesville, Florida cluster…..Dan Dunlap exits the afternoon drive slot at Renda’s adult contemporary WSHH, Pittsburgh “Wish 99.7 FM” after a 30-year career with the station.  As a result, morning personality and PD Ron Antill moves to afternoons while director of marketing and promotions and AM news anchor Chris Shovlin partners with Cris Winter for the “Cris & Chris in the Morning” program…..Tony Tecate exits FM Idaho-owned hip hop KWYD, Boise “WiLD 101.1” where he was music director/APD and morning drive host.

bombadamtretterRyan Tedder Visits ‘Nights Live.’  The OneRepublic frontman stopped in to the Westwood One studios to join host Adam Bomb (right) on his nationally syndicated show “Nights Live with Adam Bomb.”  WW1 reports Ryan Tedder (left), played music, shared great stories, and entertained the audience all night long.

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