Tag: "New York"
Stylz & Roman Tapped For Mornings at WUSN. It was just this past Tuesday (8/9) when RadioInfo mentioned that changes were continuing at WUSN, Chicago. Another major wrinkle can be added to the list, as beginning in four weeks (9/6), Dougie Stylz (Doug Bobrowski) and Justin Roman (“Stylz & Roman”) will fill the morning drive vacancy at “Chicago’s Hottest Country” following the recent exit of Ray Stevens & Lisa Dent. Other than a change in format, it won’t require much of an adjustment for Stylz & Roman as they are arriving from CBS Radio Chicago CHR cluster-mate WBBM-FM “B-96.” CBS Radio Chicago senior vice president and market manager Tim Pohlman declares, “This is a welcome and exciting refresh for this heritage Chicago brand. Stylz & Roman are quality guys that work hard, play hard, and can’t wait to engage the country music fans of Chicago. This is the perfect next step for these two talented personalities.” CBS Radio vice president of programming Todd Cavanah explains, “They are part owners of a country bar, so we knew they could authentically speak the language of the country music fan.” CBS Radio vice president of country programming/WUSN program director Jeff Kapugi comments, “Today’s country superstars are putting out hot songs – we deliver the hottest access to the most in-demand experiences in town. Chicagoland listeners want to hear longer stretches of commercial-free country songs and we deliver that along with a relevant and entertaining morning show rooted in Chicago.” Stylz & Roman add, “Words cannot express how excited we are for this new chapter in our careers and our lives. We are beyond blessed to be able to move from one legendary station to another. This truly is a dream come true.” According to 6+ stats from Nielsen Audio‘s July 2016 PPM survey, six-tenths of a share separates the market’s two country outlets – WUSN (3.0, #12, 6+) and iHeartMedia‘s WEBG “Big 95.5 – Chicago’s New Country” (2.4, three-way tie at #18, 6+). WUSN is up four-tenths from June and matches its best 6+-share since December, while “Big 95.5” hasn’t had a decrease in the last seven sweeps for a combined +.7 (1.7 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 2.0 – 2.3 – 2.4, 6+). With a 5.8 (6+), WUSN all-news cluster-mate WBBM-AM is #1. The station Stylz & Roman are leaving – WBBM-FM – is in a three-way tie at #8 with a 3.6 (6+).
Martindale Back to KKGO For PM Drive. Starting next Monday (8/15), Christine Martindale will return to Mt. Wilson Broadcasters’ country KKGO “Go Country 105,” Los Angeles for afternoon drive duties (2:00 pm – 8:00 pm). Martindale comments that, after a five-month absence from KKGO, she is, “thrilled to be back on the air and to work again with the ‘Go Country 105’ family.” Martindale joined KKGO as its mid-day talent three years ago and exited the Saul Levine-owned station in March. Various country artists are doing guest stints in Martindale’s former mid-day slot. She succeeds longtime Los Angeles on-air personality Paul Freeman, who is relocating to Washington State. Among persons 6+ in Nielsen Audio‘s July 2016 Los Angeles PPM report, “Go Country 105” is in a three-way tie at #17 (2.4, 6+); iHeartMedia adult contemporary KOST “Coast 103.5” – where Martindale previously worked as a weekend talent – is on top with a 5.4 (6+). KKGO is up in back-to-back sweeps (2.1 – 2.3 – 2.4, 6+) and is in 2.0 – 2.4 range (6+) for the sixth straight time. Its highest 6+-share in the past 12 surveys is 2.6 this past October.
Brooks, Westwood One Extend Partnership. Three-time CMA “National Broadcast Personality of The Year” Kix Brooks celebrates his tenth year hosting Cumulus Media-owned Westwood One‘s “American Country Countdown” by signing a multi-year, extended partnership. Westwood One president/Cumulus Media executive vice president of corporate marketing Suzanne Grimes explains that, “Extending our partnership with Kix is a no-brainer. He is more than a country legend: His lifestyle and entertainment brands touch millions beyond the country space and our listeners and our clients adore him. We look forward to extending our relationship working with Kix on multiple new projects.” Brooks recounts that when he was offered the opportunity to host “American Country Countdown” ten years ago, he thought, “‘Wow I don’t know much about talking on the radio, but I love this business.’ I can’t believe how time has flown. I’m blown away so many station owners have trusted me with their airwaves and so many listeners have made me part of their weekends. Cumulus has flattered me again by asking me to continue the show for years to come. I consider this a huge responsibility; I look forward to sharing my experiences along with the lives and music of our great country artists. I’ll try my best to make sure listeners are having as much fun as I am.” Brooks is the first person ever to win a CMA award in both the artist and broadcast categories. In addition to being a celebrity judge for Cumulus’ 2016 “Nash Next” competition, he hosts the nightly radio show “Kickin’ It with Kix,” and he is a regular contributor to “Nash Country Daily.”
PPM Analysis: Rhythmic Hot AC. RadioInfo managing editor Mike Kinosian presents the first of three format analyses based on data from Nielsen Audio’s July 2016 PPM survey. When compared to forthcoming overviews of mainstream CHR and rhythmic CHR, rhythmic hot AC represents a considerably smaller piece of the format pie. Among persons 6+, the highest ranked rhythmic hot AC for (at least) the sixth straight sweep is Hubbard Broadcasting’s WREW “Mix 94.9,” which ranked ninth in Cincinnati with a 4.8. In his analysis, Mike breaks out July 2016 (6+) AQH share changes of rhythmic hot AC outlets from both last month and from one year ago; July 2016 6+ market rank; and 6+ shares. See the special ratings feature here.
Kellogg Transfers to Cumulus Fort Walton Beach as OM. Inbound from Columbia, Missouri where he was operations manager for Cumulus Media Columbia-Jefferson City the past 12 years, Chris Kellogg relocates to Fort Walton Beach for similar duties at the company’s five-station Florida cluster. Cumulus Media regional vice president Pete De Simone states, “The addition of Chris to our team will afford us the additional focus we need to continue to grow our ratings and revenue. We are excited to have the collective firepower of this dynamic programming team at work for our brands, listeners, and advertisers.” Kellogg comments, “Pete has created a terrific atmosphere to foster radio excellence. I appreciate his confidence in me and I am excited to collaborate with the programming team.” The Cumulus Media Fort Walton Beach cluster consists of talk WFTW; WKSM “99 Rock”; adult contemporary WNCV “Coast 93.3”; country WYZB “Nash FM”; and CHR WZNS “Z-96.” In addition to his OM duties, Kellogg will program WNCV and WFTW, as well as co-host mornings (with Lisa Captain) on WNCV. He succeeds Hayden Green, who continues programming “Z-96” as he has done the past 16 years and is the station’s afternoon drive talent; Green has been with the cluster the past 23 years.
Exhibit Honors KKUS’ Perryman. Longtime Alpha Media-owned KKUS, Tyler (Texas) personality and Country Music Hall of Fame inductee Tom Perryman will be honored with an exhibit at the Texas Country Music Hall of Fame in Carthage. Alpha Media market manager Ginger Dockery comments, “We are proud to have Tom as part of our family. This exhibit is only a small portion of what makes Tom so special and we hope his fans will come to Carthage to congratulate him on his latest honor.” Featuring memorabilia from Perryman’s nearly 70 years in the radio business, the exhibit debuts tomorrow (Friday, 8/12); the opening precedes this year’s Texas Country Music Hall of Fame ceremonies.
Bob & Sheri Note Milestone Anniversary. Syndicated from Greater Media-owned flagship WLNK “107.9 The Link,” Charlotte – “Bob & Sheri” traveled to Hudson, New York to celebrate the 20th anniversary of their first affiliate, iHeartMedia hot AC WCTW “98.5 The Cat.” Left to right in front of the WCTW prize wheel are Sheri Lynch, WCTW’s Tina Chambers, “The Cat” operations manager Bill Williams, and Bob Lacey. “Bob & Sheri” now have more than 50 affiliates. Their show airs weekdays 5:00 am – 10:00 am on “The Cat.”
RadioInfo Tidbits. “Where ‘Power 106’ Lives” is the title of the just launched You Tube series from KPWR “Power 106.” The first episode is a behind-the-scenes look at the Emmis Los Angeles rhythmic CHR’s morning host J Cruz. It deals with his upbringing, aspirations, and how he became Los Angeles’ only English-speaking Latino morning show host ….. Although she will occasionally fill-in from time to time, Kim Carson of Bahakel adult contemporary WDEF “Sunny 92.3,” Chattanooga’s “James & Kim in the Morning” departs for a non-radio marketing position. Her last full-time day at “Sunny” is tomorrow (Friday, 8/12), which means station manager Danny Howard is in need of a morning drive co-host. Carson has been with the station since October 2011.
Neuhoff Names Shamus VP/Programming & Content. Seven-year Neuhoff Communications Lafayette, Indiana operations manager Mike Shamus (“Shamus”) is appointed to the newly created position of corporate vice president of programming & content. Neuhoff Communications chief executive officer Beth Neuhoff comments, “‘Shamus’ is a tremendous talent – a proven manager and leader with a great vision for growing and improving the Neuhoff product lineup. We are confident he will take ‘Media Made Locally’ to a whole new level.” Chief operating officer Mike Hulvey remarks, “We knew we had a rare opportunity to capitalize on Shamus’ vision for connecting with our audiences in meaningful and engaging ways. With our recent expansion, ‘Shamus’ is the guy to motivate and inspire our content and programming teams to create the best local media.” According to “Shamus,” The Neuhoff stations “are truly connected to the communities we serve. Knowing I can enhance that local audience relationship will truly solidify our position as the most important source of information and entertainment in the region.” Neuhoff owns 23 properties in five markets: Bloomington, Danville, Decatur, and Springfield (all Illinois) and Lafayette (Indiana). In addition to his operations manager duties, “Shamus” does morning drive (“Shamus & Annie”) on Neuhoff Lafayette’s WKOA “Lafayette’s Country Leader K-105.”
Definitive Idol. Season three “American Idol” winner Fantasia, whose her new album “The Definition of …” came out two weeks ago (7/29), visits with ABC Radio’s “Urban Air Power” producer Candice Williams (left). “The Definition of …” is Fantasia’s fifth studio album.
Matchmaker Titus Signs With KMG Networks. Plans are in place through KMG Networks’ Krantz Media Group to roll out a radio show next year featuring matchmaker, relationship/dating expert, and author Matt Titus. KMG Networks founder and chief executive officer Gary Krantz says, “The minute I saw Matt in action, we knew immediately that he is the guy to step up and take the job that has been open in radio for years – that of the ultimate national relationship expert for today’s high tech, mobile listeners, appealing to both men and women. We are excited to launch Matt on radio, streaming, and podcasting through our new talent division and watch him soar.” At first, Titus will be available as a guest to stations on a market-exclusive basis through KMG. Among the stations on which he has already appeared are the morning shows of iHeartMedia Detroit CHR WKQI “Channel 95-5; co-owned classic rock WBGG “Big 105.9,” Miami; and Lotus Communications-owned KLPX “Tucson’s Real Classic Rock.” Titus’ television credits include Lifetime‘s 2009 reality show “Matched in Manhattan” and NBC-TV’s “The Match Off.” In addition, he has written “Why Hasn’t He Called?” and “Why Hasn’t He Proposed?” Earlier this year, KMG Talent, in association with Sungate Partners, launched “Always in Fashion” with Mark Weber.
Burns Fumes Over Nielsen’s Pending Policies. In a letter he sent yesterday (Wednesday, 8/10) to the FCC, the Nielsen Company, and the Federal Trade Commission, 3 Daughters Media chief executive officer Gary Burns addressed several issues including his opposition to the way radio stations are counted in specific markets and total line reporting. Nielsen has told subscribers total line reporting will be available only to qualified subscribers “in good standing.” Burns – who owns and operates eight stations in Virginia – writes, “I have strongly disagreed with the Commission’s policy of outsourcing its responsibility for defining radio markets to two commercial enterprises, Nielsen Ratings and BIA/Kelsey. Under a new Nielsen policy, only clients of Nielsen will be able to dictate how many stations an entity can actually own. Subscribers already dictate what counties are home to the metro. If this proposed new Nielsen rule stands, it seems that the Commission will be required to find a new method of determining how many stations are home to a metro. I respectfully request that the Commission weigh in on this policy and [ask] that Nielsen delay implementation of their new policy in order to insure that station counts are accurate, consistent, and to avoid unintended consequences of this new policy.”
Soon-to-be-Released Book About Talk Radio Discussed on Harrison Podcast. Veteran talk radio producer, Bernadette Duncan, appears as the guest on this week’s installment of the PodcastOne hit series “Up Close and Far Out with Michael Harrison” talking about her forthcoming book, scheduled for publication in September, titled Yappy Days: Behind the Scenes with Newsers, Schmoozers, Boozers and Losers (AuthorHouse/Talkers Books 2016). The book chronicles Duncan’s 26-year career “behind the glass” as a New York City-based talk radio producer in the “golden era” between the eighties and first decade of the 21st century. Duncan (who is also married to Michael Harrison) served as a producer for some of the biggest names in talk radio during that period. They include Larry King, Sally Jessy Raphael, Gil Gross, Tom Snyder, Lou Dobbs, Charles Osgood and more. The book explores the quirky egos of radio’s top performers and often-neurotic guests and is set against the dramatically changing backdrop of America’s pre- and post-9/11 realities. It is full of anecdotes and insights about the industry, its people and processes. Duncan explores the complex office politics in this offbeat arena of show business capturing what it takes to be a radio producer – a role she describes as “the most under-rated, under-paid and under-appreciated job in commercial media.” On the podcast, Harrison and Duncan specifically discuss her experiences working with Sally Jessy Raphael – one of the true pioneers of talk radio who paved the way for countless others and was Duncan’s earliest inspiration to enter the field. Duncan talks about the personal growth she achieved working across the glass from Larry King during his media heyday as well as the fiery drama that took place behind the scenes of The Lou Dobbs Show that she helped launch as executive producer. On completing the podcast Harrison says, “There are so many stories and people written about in this book that we hardly scratched the surface in this advance interview – but there will be plenty of time to get deeper into it all when Bernadette goes on tour promoting it next month. Meantime, it was enormously fun having her as a guest on the podcast and I think radio pros and media freaks alike will love it.” To listen to the entire podcast, please click here or click on the “Up Close and Far Out” player box located in the right-hand column of every page of Talkers.com and RadioInfo.com.
Hill Climbs to Program Miami’s “Big.” Transferring in from iHeartMedia Portland – where he was senior vice president of programming the past two years – Dave Hill takes over as program director of co-owned Miami classic rocker WBGG “Big 105.9”; he will do a weeknight on-air shift as well. According to regional senior vice president of programming Alex Tear, “After an extensive search, we are excited to welcome Dave to the Miami team. Dave’s programming experience and extensive multi-format knowledge – ranging from top 40 and rock to news-talk, country, and more – make him the perfect person to lead ‘Big 105.9’ to the next level.” Hill, who begins his new assignment in two weeks (8/22), comments, “I am excited for the next chapter of my life in Miami and helping to guide one of the most legendary brands in the industry.” Hill’s resume includes being operations manager of Hearst Broadcasting Baltimore and programming its WIYY “98 Rock” there. In addition, he has programmed and been on-air at WMRQ, Hartford and in Albany (New York) on WQBK and WQBJ. Tied for tenth-place in Miami’s latest (July 2016) Nielsen Audio PPM ratings sweep, “Big 105.9” extends its successive streak of not having a decrease to seven and is a cumulative +1.1 in that stretch (2.6 – 2.8 – 2.8 – 2.8 – 3.0 – 3.2 – 3.7 – 3.7, 6+). Setting the pace is Entercom adult contemporary WLYF “Lite-FM” (8.1, 6+).
Emmis Indianapolis Names Williams SVP/MM. Eleven-year Radio One Indianapolis market manager Chuck Williams joins cross-town Emmis as senior vice president and market manager of its four-station cluster as well as its statewide news service, Network Indiana. Williams succeeds Charlie Morgan, who served in that capacity the past seven years before being named interim market manager of Emmis New York earlier this year. Emmis president and chief operating officer Patrick Walsh explains, “We have competed against Chuck throughout his career and always viewed him as a gifted, high integrity leader uniquely positioned to build on our foundation of success in Indianapolis. We are thrilled he has agreed to lead our team. With his deep knowledge of the Indianapolis radio market and the advertisers it serves, we expect him to jump right in and assist our talented team to continue to grow and prosper.” Williams comments, “I have long been an admirer of the Emmis culture, their people and their unfailing pride and leadership in the industry and their communities. Charlie Morgan built outstanding heritage stations with very talented people. I am looking forward to joining [Emmis Indianapolis vice president of sales] Tracey Bean, [VP/programming] Bob Richards, and the whole team at Emmis.” Before joining Radio One, Williams was general manager of Bonneville Chicago; he is the past chair of the Indiana Broadcasters Association. With each station’s share and market rank in parenthesis, here’s how the four Emmis Indianapolis outlets performed in the July 2016 Nielsen Audio PPM report: adult contemporary WYXB “B-105.7” (6.4, #4, 6+); country WLHK “Hank” (5.1, #7, 6+); talk WIBC (3.8, #11, 6+); and sports WFNI “The Fan” (2.1, #15, 6+).
Robinson Named VP/Sales for iHeartMedia D.C. After having worked as general sales manager for iHeartMedia St. Louis, James Robinson relocates to Washington, D.C. as vice president of sales for the company’s cluster in the nation’s capital. Mid-Atlantic region senior vice president of sales Aaron Hyland states, “I am excited to welcome James to our Washington, D.C. sales management team. James has an exceptional track record, professionalism, and experience that will allow him to play a key role as we take our team to the next level.” Robinson remarks, “It is an honor to be part of the great team in Washington, D.C. I look forward to continuing to be an important asset to iHeartMedia and working with its team and iconic radio brands in Washington, D.C.” Robinson has held other sales management positions in Atlanta, Columbus, Memphis, and New Orleans. The five-station iHeartMedia Washington, D.C. cluster consists of mainstream CHR WIHT “Hot 99.5” (#5, 5.7, 6+, Nielsen Audio PPM, July 2016); adult contemporary WASH (#6, 4.6, 6+); WBIG “Big 100 Washington’s Classic Rock” (#8, 3.6, 6+); WMZQ “#1 for New Country” (#12, 3.4, 6+); and alternative WWDC “DC-101” (#17, 2.6, 6+).
WFMT GM Robinson to Exit. After 16 years as executive vice president and general manager of Chicago’s WFMT, Steve Robinson will depart the Window to the World classical outlet next month (9/30). Robinson joined WFMT in 2000 after 10 years with the Nebraska Public Radio Network. WFMT president and chief executive officer Dan Schmidt notes, “It is with great regret that we bid farewell to an indispensable member of our WFMT family. It is difficult to imagine the station without his unflagging energy, endless creativity, and deep knowledge of classical music and radio operations. He will be greatly missed; I know I speak for all of us when I wish him success in his future endeavors.” Robinson comments, “Working at WFMT and the WFMT Radio Network has been the greatest privilege and challenge of my career. Everyone at WFMT is immensely creative, knowledgeable, and passionate about their work – all I have really done is try to harness this incredible talent to move the station forward. If it has progressed at all in the 16 years I’ve been here, it is because of them, and I will always be grateful.” Robinson previously worked in Boston at public stations WBUR, WGBH, and WCRB; KPFA, San Francisco; and at WBGO, Newark-New York. Up the last three Nielsen Audio PPM sweeps for a combined +.7 (.8 – 1.2 – 1.4 – 1.5, 6+), WFMT is in a tie at #24 (6+, July 2016).
WUSN Rebrands to “Chicago’s Hottest Country.” Changes continue at Chicago’s WUSN, where longtime morning show team Ray Stevens & Lisa Dent recently exited, as did night talent Joel Lisinki. Now the CBS Radio-owned station typically referred to as “US-99” adopts “Chicago’s Hottest Country” as its handle. Commenting to Chicago media correspondent Robert Feder, WUSN program director Jeff Kapugi states, “It is important that we reflect today’s country listener in everything we do. The artists, music, and concerts are hot; and now, so is ‘US-99’ Chicago’s hottest country.” CBS Radio Chicago vice president of programming Todd Cavanah tells Feder that “some exciting new changes” are forthcoming to WUSN. According to 6+ stats from Nielsen Audio‘s July 2016 PPM survey, six-tenths of a share separates the market’s two country outlets – WUSN (3.0, #12, 6+) and iHeartMedia‘s WEBG “Big 95.5 – Chicago’s New Country” (2.4, three-way tie at #18, 6+). WUSN is up four-tenths from June and matches its best 6+-share since December, while “Big 95.5” hasn’t had a decrease in the last seven sweeps for a combined +.7 (1.7 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 2.0 – 2.3 – 2.4, 6+). With a 5.8 (6+), WUSN all-news cluster-mate WBBM-AM is #1.
Malone Moves to KC as “X-105.1” APD. KURQ, San Luis Obispo (California) assistant program director and on-air talent Matt Malone departs the El Dorado Broadcasters‘ alternative station to join Cumulus Media Kansas City’s similarly formatted KCJK “X-105.1” as assistant program director and afternoon drive (3:00 pm – 7:00 pm) host. Cumulus Media midwest regional vice president Donna Baker comments, “Matt’s passion for – and extensive knowledge of – the alternative format and his connection to listeners are the ideal fit for ‘X-105.’ Operations manager Lance Tidwell and I are thrilled to welcome Matt back to Cumulus and the tremendous opportunity ahead for Matt and the ‘X-105’ team.” Columbia College (Chicago) graduate Malone remarks, “There are no words to cover how excited I am to get back with Cumulus, and to build this new alternative brand at ‘X-105.1’ in Kansas City. The opportunity to join [this] team is a dream come true. I am beyond ready to help make something special happen.” Prior to his KURQ tenure, Malone was Cumulus Media’s Chicago-based corporate programming assistant; assistant program director for the company’s classic hits-oldies outlet WLS-FM, Chicago; and was an on-air talent at Milwaukee Radio Alliance alternative WLUM “FM 102.1.” Previously adult hits using the “Jack-FM” moniker, KCJK transitioned to alternative in mid-June (2016). Among persons 6+ in the July 2016 Nielsen Audio PPM report for Kansas City, “X-105.1” ranks #17. It is off by one full-share for the second straight sweep – following a +.9 in May (3.6 – 4.5 – 3.5 – 2.5, 6+). Flat at 7.4 (6+), co-owned classic rock KCFX “The Fox” is the market leader for the third successive ratings period.
Hughes To Be Inducted Into The Rhythm & Blues Music Hall of Fame. Over and above that honor, Radio One founder/chair Cathy Hughes will receive the Music Living Legends Award as well. Rhythm & Blues Hall of Fame founder and chief executive officer Lamont Robinson comments, “It is going to be an honor to enshrine Cathy Hughes into the Rhythm & Blues Hall of Fame class of 2016 and to honor her with the Rhythm & Blues Music Living Legends award. Ms. Hughes is definitely a trailblazer in every sense of the word. She has opened so many doors for many rhythm & blues artists and entertainers.” Hughes states, “There are so many noted artists, musicians, producers, and others whose impact has not only shaped the African-American musical landscape, but also significantly influenced music and culture in this country and around the world. I am humbled and honored that my life’s work with Radio One, especially in the Motor City, is being recognized as part of their collective legacy.” This year’s other inductees (some posthumously) include: Bootsy Collins, Fats Domino, Eddie Floyd, Jimi Hendrix, Prince, Smokey Robinson, The Supremes, and Dionne Warwick. The fourth annual induction ceremony and concert will take place one week from this Sunday (8/21) at Detroit’s Ford Performing Arts Theater.
KILT-FM Officially Names Russo Afternoon Driver. Performing the role on an interim basis the past two months, Nick Russo is now formally the afternoon drive personality for CBS Radio Houston’s country KILT-FM “The Bull.” Program director Bruce Logan notes that, “Nick has done a tremendous job and his social media web contributions are invaluable to helping us achieve our goals. His rise with CBS Radio Houston has been impressive. In the span of about two years, Nick has moved from part-time for ‘The Bull’ and [co-owned CHR KKHH] ‘Hot’ to fulltime night host, and now to PM drive.” With Russo promoted to PM drive, “The Bull” is now looking to fill his on-air evening vacancy. Among persons 6+ in Nielsen Audio‘s July 2016 PPM report, “The Bull” finishes in a tie at #11 (3.6), 3.4 shares behind market pacesetter iHeartMedia adult contemporary KODA “Sunny” (7.0, 6+).
Jimenez Returns to KZZO. It is a homecoming at KZZO “Now 100.5,” as former assistant program director/music director Sonia Jimenez reclaims her former position at the CBS Radio Sacramento hot AC. According to vice president of programming Chad Rufer, “Sonia was instrumental in the launch of ‘Now’ and she played a huge part in the station’s early success before leaving [for channel 40 KTXL-TV, Sacramento]. She will work with the music community to assist in booking talent for various shows and work side-by-side with co-assistant program director Chad Skinner on strategic promotions and marketing opportunities for the station.” In 4.6 – 4.9 range (6+) the past four sweeps, “Now 100.5” finishes fifth (4.7, 6+) in Nielsen Audio‘s July 2016 PPM report; on top with a 10.3 (6+) is Entercom classic rock KSEG “The Eagle.”
Fenway Parks as APD at Augusta’s WHHD. Two-year WWST “Star 102,” Knoxville music director/night show talent “Fenway” (Chris Daugherty) exits the Scripps mainstream CHR to become assistant program director/music director/afternoon driver at Beasley Media Group CHR WHHD “HD-98.3 All the Hits,” Augusta (Georgia). Program director Kris Fisher states, “‘HD-98.3’ is ready to follow-up our best ratings book in the history of the station with such a strong addition to our HD entourage.” Fenway remarks that he is “honored” to join the Beasley Family and is “looking forward to help ‘HD-983’ grow even bigger and better.” After gaining three-tenths (4.3 – 4.6, spring 2015 – fall 2015, 12+), “HD-983” erupted to a 5.9 (+1.3, 12+) in Nielsen Audio‘s spring 2016 book and ranks fourth. On top with 7.9 each (12+) are iHeartMedia urban AC and adult contemporary siblings WKSP “Kiss-FM” and WBBQ “Most Music-Best Variety.”
Reckless NYC Interview. Promoting her new album entitled “Reckless,” artist Martina McBride yesterday (Monday, 8/8) visited with Cumulus Media New York City country outlet WNSH “Nash-FM 94.7” 3:00 pm – 7:00 pm air talent Jesse Addy. McBride discussed the album, as well as her upcoming (8/25) New Brunswick, New Jersey concert.
RadioInfo Tidbits. In a GoFundMe campaign to raise funds for flood victims in his home state of West Virginia, Arista Nashville artist Brad Paisley helped to bring in $250,000. In addition, pharmaceutical company Mylan and MedExpress are donating $1.75 million to West Virginia flood relief through the Brad Paisley Foundation ….. Former WQNU, Louisville morning co-host Chris Diaz joins Steel City Media hot AC WLTJ “Q-92.9,” Pittsburgh for morning drive duties ….. Radio One Richmond operations manager/program director Jeff Anderson is appointed to similar duties for Beasley Media Group Charlotte urban contemporary WPEG “Power 98” and urban AC WBAV “V-101.9,” where he succeeds Jamilliah “Jam” Muhammad, who left three months ago ….. A car accident last night (8/8) has claimed the life of Curtis Media Group Raleigh-owned country WQDR promotion director Dede Wakefield. According to reports, Wakefield was killed when her car was hit from behind, causing her vehicle to push into the car in front of her.
Cool Job Opportunity. In light of the fact program director Haley Jones is leaving at the end of this month, Emmis Austin triple A KGSR is on the hunt for a replacement. First and foremost, vice president of programming & operations/director of special projects Chase Rupe is “looking for a great programming leader.” The ideal candidate, according to Rupe, should be “someone who understands how to work with multiple stakeholders and balance the demands of competing in the ratings, organizing and executing massive events, coaching talent, and is committed to helping the revenue team as much as the product team.” KGSR’s strongest (6+) showing in Nielsen Audio‘s last 12 Austin PPM reports was a 3.4 in September. Off a combined eight-tenths since January, the station has been down or flat the past six ratings periods (3.1 – 3.1 – 2.6 – 2.5 – 2.3 – 2.3 – 2.3, 6+) and is currently in a tie at #16; co-owned adult hits KBPA “Bob” is the market leader (8.0, 6+, July 2016).
‘Mark in the Morning’ Cast Members Andy Chanley and Gina Grad to Take Over KSWD, Los Angeles AM Show. Tomorrow (8/3) will be the final morning show on Entercom’s classic rock KSWD, Los Angeles “100.3 The Sound” for Mark Thompson. He officially hands of the show to his cast mates Andy Chanley and Gina Grad who will launch “Andy & Gina in the Morning” on Thursday. The station says “while keeping some of the most popular features of ‘Mark in The Morning,’ the new program will devote more airtime to playing music.” On leaving, Thompson says, “‘The Sound’ has decided that they need to play more music in the morning, and that’s not really the type of show I do. I try my best to entertain those who are listening with humor and shenanigans. So it wouldn’t make sense for me to host a music-intensive show. Both ‘The Sound’ and I knew that.” Thompson is planning to launch a syndicated weekend show on ‘The Sound’ called “Cool Stories in Music,” in which he takes a famous group or artist and, along with their timeless hits, tells the stories behind the music that few people know. Station PD Dave Beasing adds, “‘The Sound’ brand is built on classic rock. Andy and Gina will play a lot and they’ll continue to offer sports with Todd Donoho, LA Rams reports with Sam Farmer of the LA Times, and ‘Flick Chat’ movie reviews with Grae Drake of Rotten Tomatoes. Plus, Mark’s daughter Katie Thompson will remain as The Sound’s ‘Chick on the Street’ reporter.”
‘WE 96-3’ is Portland’s New Hip Hop Outlet. This signal – a move-in from the Bend, Oregon market – is owned by 3 Horizons, LLC and is operated under an LMA by Alpha Media. KWLZ flips from classic hits to hip hop as “WE 96-3.” Alpha Media vice president of programming Phil Becker says, “Portland has been without a true rhythmic CHR station since 2008 and WE believe the market deserves an authentic alternative. When looking at national trends, regardless of geography, some of the most in-demand music in the world will be played on ‘WE 96-3.’” In the press release, Alpha says that WQHT, New York morning personality Ebro Darden is “narrating” the station. Core artists include: Drake, Kanye West, Nicki Minaj, DJ Khaled and more.
Jim O’Brien Renews with WCSX, Detroit. Morning personality Jim O’Brien and Greater Media sign a multi-year contract extension for O’Brien to continue his role on rock WCSX, Detroit. O’Brien joined Trudi Daniels as co-host of the morning show in December of 2013. Prior to that, he served as a long-time producer and on-air contributor at the station. Detroit market manager Steve Chessare comments, “We look forward to continuing our relationship with Jim. He has played an important role in the success of the station and is a valuable part of our family.”
‘Bob & Tom Show’ Rounds Out Cast with Josh Arnold. The nationally syndicated “Bob & Tom Show” adds comic Josh Arnold to the cast. The Westwood One program features show co-founder Tom Griswold, Chick McGee, Kristi Lee, and now St. Louis native Arnold. The press release from Westwood One says Arnold “has established himself as one of the top nationally touring feature comedians in the country. Arnold’s comedy has been heard on Sirius XM Satellite Radio and he’s provided material for Comedy Central’s ‘@Midnight’ and ‘The Burn.’” Griswold says, “We are thrilled to have Josh join us each day…he is one of the funniest, most twisted people I know.”
Eric Tyler Takes Night Slot at ‘B96’ in Chicago. Rockford, Illinois native Eric Tyler is the new night personality on CBS RADIO’s CHR WBBM-FM, Chicago “B96,” taking over for Jason Cage, who recently moved to CBS RADIO’s WZMP, Philadelphia. Tyler was most recently APD/MD and afternoon jock at iHeartMedia’s KBKS, Seattle “Kiss-FM.” CBS RADIO Chicago VP of programming Todd Cavanaugh says, “We are thrilled to welcome Eric and add another consummate radio professional to B96’s on-air lineup. The fact that he has an overwhelming, well-known passion for the market, CBS RADIO Chicago, and our radio station is an added bonus. We can’t wait to get him started on B96.”
Cumulus’ Gary Pizzati Announces His Retirement. Longtime Cumulus Media senior vice president Gary Pizzati is retiring from the company and from radio broadcasting at the end of August. Pizzati started his career as an air talent and programmer and then moved into sales and management. He joined Cumulus in 1998 to manage the Augusta, Georgia cluster. Pizzati says, “The past 30 years in radio and 18 with Cumulus have been extremely rewarding. I truly love radio and all the amazing people who power this exciting industry. It’s been a part of my life since my teens and has been a remarkable journey that started from my days on air.” Pizzati rose to SVP in 2005 with responsibility for 27 markets, including two of the company’s largest. Cumulus especially commends him for “turning around several major markets and recruiting some of the best talent into the company.” President and CEO Mary Berner adds, “Known as a strong leader, teacher, and consummate radio guy, Gary’s contributions to Cumulus cannot be overstated. He will be greatly missed by his Cumulus colleagues.”
Round One of July PPM Data Released. Ratings information from Nielsen Audio‘s July 2016 PPM survey has been released for the first round of 12 markets including: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Dallas, Houston, Philadelphia, Atlanta, Nassau-Suffolk (Long Island), Riverside, San Jose, and Middlesex-Somerset-Union (New Jersey). Nielsen’s July 2016 survey period covered June 16 – July 13. You can view all the 6+ numbers from subscribing stations here. Meanwhile, RadioInfo managing editor Mike Kinosian (Kinosian@RadioInfo.com) provides his “Takeaways” from these 12 PPM markets below.
1) New York – Within 5.1 – 5.7 range the past seven sweeps (5.1 – 5.3 – 5.5 – 5.3 – 5.6 – 5.7 – 5.4, 6+), WCBS-FM trots out a massive eight-tenths’ gain to 6.2, its most potent 6+-share since last November when it reached 6.4. Moreover, the CBS Radio classic hits-oldies outlet vaults from fourth to first, displacing iHeartMedia adult contemporary WLTW “Lite-FM,” which had been on top the past four ratings periods. In addition to having its lowest 6+-share since November 2014 (5.6), “Lite-FM” slips to #2 and is down or flat for the fourth successive time (6.7 – 6.5 – 6.4 – 6.4 – 6.0, 6+). Rebounding from June’s -.4, Spanish Broadcasting System-owned Spanish contemporary WPAT-FM “93.1 Amor” notches a +.7 (2.2 – 1.8 – 2.5, 6+) to climb from #20 to #17. Although it slips from third to fourth, iHeartMedia CHR WHTZ “Z-100” registers its fifth straight monthly without a decrease (4.7 – 5.3 – 5.4 – 5.4 – 5.5 – 5.5, 6+). Simultaneous with CBS Radio-owned WNEW-FM “Fresh 102.7” (formerly WWFS) dropping one-tenth (3.0 – 2.9, #14 in June, 6+) and Cumulus Media’s WPLJ adding three-tenths (2.6 – 2.9, #16 in June, 6+), the two hot ACs are tied at #13. This is the 19th successive sweep that WPLJ has recorded a 6+-share between 2.0 – 2.9 (6+). Sliding from #17 to #18, country cluster-mate WNSH “Nash-FM” is nonetheless up or flat for the fourth consecutive time (1.8 – 1.9 – 2.0 – 2.1 – 2.1, 6+). Falling from sixth to eighth, iHeartMedia classic rocker WAXQ “Q-104.3” (4.3, -.1, 6+) has its string of monthlies without a decrease end at six (3.1 – 3.5 – 3.6 – 4.0 – 4.2 – 4.2 – 4.4, 6+).
2) Los Angeles – Boasting a one-half share increase (2.4 – 2.9, 6+), Univision Radio regional Mexican KSCA “Zona MX 101.9” has its best 6+-share since January (also 2.9) and advances from #16 to a three-way logjam at #12. Following seven successive negative trends for a combined -1.4 (3.5 – 3.3 – 3.0 – 2.9 – 2.6 – 2.5, 2.2 – 2.1, 6+), Spanish Broadcasting System regional Mexican KLAX “97.9 La Raza” improves by three-tenths to 2.4 and is back in the top 20 (#21 to #17). With a +.2 to 1.8 (6+), public (Santa Monica College) KCRW (#24) applies the brakes to four straight monthlies without an increase (2.2 – 2.0 – 1.8 – 1.6 – 1.6, 6+). Up one-tenth, iHeartMedia adult contemporary KOST “Coast 103.5” (5.3 – 5.4, 6+) boasts #1 honors for the ninth successive sweep. This is the third straight time that co-owned urban contemporary KRRL registers a 3.1 (6+) but “Real 92.3” drops from a tie at #10 to #11. Not only is KTWV “The Wave” off by one-half share (to 4.2, 6+) and dips from fourth to fifth, the CBS Radio smooth AC has its consecutive streak of up or flat sweeps conclude at four (4.2 – 4.4 – 4.4 – 4.7 – 4.7, 6+). Co-owned alternative KROQ also declines by one-half share (to 2.4, 6+), tumbling from #13 to #17. Its previous five trends were 3.1 – 2.9 – 3.1 – 2.9 – 2.9 (6+). Meanwhile, format challenger – iHeartMedia’s KYSR-FM “Alt 98.7” – picks up two-tenths and returns to the top ten (#12 to #9). This is the third time in the last five sweeps that “Alt 98.7” records a 3.2 (3.2 – 3.2 – 3.3 – 3.0 – 3.2, 6+). Prior to hitting 3.2 in March, “Alt 98.7” was in the two-share range the previous 18 sweeps. Following three straight up or flat trends (3.0 – 3.4 – 3.6 – 3.6, 6+), Univision Radio’s Spanish adult hits KRCD “Recuerdo” is off by four-tenths (3.2, seventh to ninth, 6+). Locked on #15 in March, April, May, and June – Emmis rhythmic CHR KPWR “Power 106” (2.9, +.1, 6+) jumps to the aforementioned three-way tie at #12 and is in the 2.6 – 2.9 range for the twelfth successive survey. This is the fourth consecutive time that iHeartMedia talker KFI falters (3.5 – 3.2 – 3.0 – 2.9 – 2.7, #13 to #15, 6+).
3) Chicago – After modest back-to-back setbacks totaling four-tenths (3.9 – 3.6 – 3.5, 6+), WGCI-FM “Chicago’s #1 for Hip-Hop & R&B” answers with a one-half share gain to 4.0 (eighth to fifth, 6+), thus ending a string of 31 straight appearances in the 3.0 – 3.9 range (6+). The last time the iHeartMedia urban contemporary outlet wasn’t in the three-share range was February 2014 (4.4, 6+). Without a decrease for seven straight ratings periods for a combined +.7 (1.7 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 2.0 – 2.3 – 2.4, 6+), co-owned WEBG “Big 95.5 Chicago’s New Country” advances from #20 to a three-way tie at #18. Six-tenths ahead of it is its format rival – CBS Radio’s WUSN “US-99.5” (2.6 – 3.0, +.4, #16 to #12). Notwithstanding that it is without an increase for the fifth straight time for a combined loss of -1.1 (6.9 – 6.6 – 6.5 – 6.4 – 5.8 – 5.8, 6+), “US-99.5” all-news sibling WBBM-AM advances from second to first. Displaced from the penthouse is iHeartMedia urban AC WVAZ “V-103,” which takes over the runner-up slot – the position it occupied five straight times before hitting #1 in June. Off by one-half share to 5.6 (6+), “V-103” had been stuck on 6.1 (6+) the past three sweeps. It is a game of turnaround for WBBM, which had been on top from January through June. Owing to a +.1 to 1.5 (6+), WMVP “ESPN Chicago 1000″ (#25 to #24) ends three consecutive down trends which accounted for a 6+-share erosion of nearly 50% since March (2.6 – 2.0 – 1.9 – 1.4, 6+). A model of consistency, Hubbard Broadcasting adult contemporary WSHE (flat at #16) is within 2.0 – 2.9 range (6+) for the 27th straight monthly (2.6 – 2.5, -.1, 6+); 2.8 in May was its best 6+-share since October 2014 (also 2.8). For the sixth straight month, iHeartMedia hot AC WLIT (#6 to a three-way tie at #8, 6+) is without an increase (13.9 – 4.7 – 4.5 – 4.0 – 3.9 – 3.9 – 3.7 – 3.6, 6+); “My-FM” is -10.3 in that stretch. For the third time in the last five sweeps, format foe – Hubbard Broadcasting’s WTMX “101.9 The Mix” – notches a 4.9 (4.9 – 4.8 – 4.9 – 5.0 – 4.9, 6+) and is steady at #3. Although it is without an increase for the sixth straight ratings period (3.3 – 3.2 – 3.2 – 3.2 – 3.1 – 2.9 – 2.8, 6+) CBS Radio classic hits-oldies WJMK “K-Hits 104.3” continues at #13.
4) San Francisco – By gaining one-tenth to 4.1 (6+), Entercom adult contemporary KOIT-FM (steady at #4) curtails six consecutive down or flat reports. In that stretch, “Better Variety for a Better Workday” dropped a combined -6.4 and more than 60% of its 6+-share (10.4 – 5.6 – 5.4 – 4.6 – 4.6 – 4.3 – 4.0, 6+). Similarly, also without a gain in the San Francisco report the past six sweeps (2.6 – 1.7 – 1.4 – 1.4 – 1.2 – 1.2 -1.0, 6+), Alpha Media adult contemporary KBAY is +.2 (1.2, #26, 6+). Its loss over that period exactly mirrors that of KOIT-FM in its stretch – both AC facilities were -61.5% in their respective streaks. Not only is this the fourth straight monthly that iHeartMedia-owned KIOI “Star 101.3” is at 3.9 (unchanged at #5, 6+), it is the fifth successive sweep in which the hot AC hasn’t noted a decrease (3.8 – 3.8 – 3.9 – 3.9 – 3.9 – 3.9, 6+), although its net gain is just one-tenth. Down or flat the previous three monthlies for a cumulative -1.0 (3.0 – 3.0 – 2.6 – 2.0, 6+), Entercom urban AC KBLX “102.9 The Bay’s R&B” improves by one-tenth to advance from #18 to a three-way tie at #16 (2.1, 6+). Two negative streaks end for Cumulus Media siblings: Triple A KFOG, down or flat the past six successive times (2.2 – 2.1 – 2.0 – 1.9 – 1.8 – 1.7 – 1.7, 6+), gains two-tenths, while talk KSFO, down or flat the past five consecutive sweeps (2.9 – 2.4 – 2.4 – 2.0 – 2.0 – 1.8, 6+), is +.1; the two cluster-mates are tied at #19 (1.9, 6+). Following four successive monthlies without a gain (6.2 – 6.0 – 5.5 – 5.4 – 5.4, 6+), CBS Radio all-news KCBS-AM picks up one tenth to 5.5 (6+) and holds down the runner-up spot for the fourth successive sweep. Albeit that it regresses by one-half share (6.7 – 6.2, 6+), Cumulus Media sports outlet/San Francisco Giants flagship KNBR “The Sports Leader” is #1 for the fourth straight time. “The Sports Leader” unseated KCBS-AM at #1 in April.
5) Dallas – Off by a combined eight-tenths in the last three (downward) sweeps (4.7 – 4.5 – 4.1 – 3.9, 6+), Univision Radio regional Mexican KLNO recaptures all of it (4.7, +.8) to progress from sixth to fourth. Within 2.4 – 2.8 range (6+) the past five sweeps, Service Broadcasting urban contemporary KKDA-FM “K-104” improves by one-half share to 3.1, its best 6+-share since last December’s 3.8, and elevates from #18 to #13. Six-tenths of a share separates the top three finishers, which includes (in the same order as in June) CBS Radio classic hits-oldies KLUV (5.7, -.6, 6+); iHeartMedia CHR KHKS “Kiss-FM” (5.9 – 5.6, -.3, 6+); and Cumulus Media‘s KPLX “The Wolf” (+.4, 6+). It is the second straight month at #1 for KLUV, but the -.6 ends three straight increases which resulted in a cumulative +1.0 (5.3 – 5.5 – 6.1 – 6.3, 6+). Prior to a +.2 in April, KLUV had three straight dips resulting in an exactly 50% loss of its 6+-share (10.6 – 6.6 – 6.1 – 5.3, 6+). Before advancing to #1 in June by unseating “Kiss” (which had been #1 the past four ratings periods), KLUV spent four successive sweeps in the runner-up slot. Frozen on 4.7 in April, May, and June, “The Wolf” has not had a decrease in the past five monthlies for a cumulative +.8 (4.3 – 4.4 – 4.7 – 4.7 – 4.7 – 5.1, 6+). Unchanged at #9, co-owned KSCS had been up or flat the past six sweeps for a combined +.9 (2.6 – 2.7 – 3.1 – 3.2 – 3.5 – 3.5 – 3.5, 6+), but “New Country 96.3” falters by two-tenths to 3.3 (6+). Over the past seven sweeps, KRNB has registered a 6+-share between 4.0 – 4.8. Not only does “Smooth R&B 105.7” spiral out of the top 5 (#5 to #15), it records the largest (6+) June 2016 – July 2016 decline of any station in the 12 PPM-markets whose data was released on Monday (4.4 – 3.0, -1.4, 6+). Moreover, it is the weakest 6+-share for the Service Broadcasting urban AC since last September’s 2.7.
6) Houston – Off a combined six-tenths since April (5.8 – 5.5 – 5.2, 6+), Cox Media Group country KKBQ “The New 93-Q” posts a +.7 to 5.9 and remains at #5 (6+). It is the best 6+-showing for “The New 93-Q” in exactly one year (6.4, 6+, July 2015). Meanwhile, its format rival – CBS Radio‘s KILT-FM “100.3 The Bull” – falls out of the top ten (4.0 – 3.6, -.4, #10 to #11, 6+). Five straight sweeps without an increase by KRBE “Houston’s #1 Hit Music Station” produced a combined loss of just four-tenths (4.5 – 4.4 – 4.3 – 4.2 – 4.1 – 4.1, 6+) and now, the Cumulus Media CHR notches a +.6 to 4.7 (6+), climbing from eighth to sixth. It has a 1.7-share lead over CBS Radio’s similarly formatted KKHH “Hot 95.7 Houston’s Hottest Hits” (3.3 – 3.0, -.3, #14 to #15, 6+). Improving by one-half share each are Univision Radio regional Mexican KLTN (steady at #2); Spanish adult hits sibling KOVE “Mas Variedad 106.5” (#16 to #13); and iHeartMedia alternative KTBZ “94.5 The Buzz” (4.1 – 4.6, eighth to seventh, 6+). This is the fourth successive gain for KLTN yielding a combined increase of two full-shares (4.9 – 5.4 – 6.3 – 6.4 – 6.9, 6+), while “Mas Variedad” had been down or flat the past five sweeps for a combined loss of one-half share (3.4 – 3.4 – 3.4 – 3.0 – 3.0 – 2.9, 6+). Without an increase for the third straight sweep (7.7 – 7.4 – 7.4 – 7.0, 6+), iHeartMedia adult contemporary KODA “Sunny 99.1” nevertheless ranks first for the 23rd consecutive ratings period, although its lead over KLTN is just one-tenth. Owing to a +.3 to 2.8 (#19 to #17, 6+), University of Houston-owned KUHF ends four straight declines (3.8 – 3.7 – 3.5 – 3.0 – 2.5, 6+), which resulted in a cumulative -1.3; June’s 2.5 was the lowest 6+-share for KUHF since last October (also 2.5).
7) Philadelphia – On the heels of a one-half share increase in June, iHeartMedia urban contemporary WUSL “Power 99” tacks on an additional seven-tenths (3.7 – 4.2 – 4.9, 6+), inching up from ninth to seventh. It is the strongest 6+-performance for “Power” in approximately two years (5.2, 6+, August 2014). Over and above avoiding a decrease for the sixth straight sweep for a cumulative +1.3 (5.9 – 6.2 – 6.3 – 6.6 – 6.7 – 7.2 – 7.2, 6+), CBS Radio-owned WOGL “Philadelphia’s Greatest Hits” dethrones Jerry Lee Radio adult contemporary WBEB “More FM” at #1. “Philadelphia’s Greatest Hits” advances to the penthouse from the runner-up slot, where it resided the past seven survey periods. Market dominant the past 12 monthlies, “More FM” was -.7 in April; recouped all of it – plus one tenth more – in May; dropped four-tenths in June; and regresses by another one-half share in July (7.7 – 7.0 – 7.8 – 7.4 – 6.9, 6+). This is the weakest 6+performance for “More FM” (which slips to second-place) since September’s 6.8. Up one-tenth to 1.9 (6+), Radio One urban-rhythmic oldies WPHI “Boom 107.9” ends six straight sweeps without an increase (2.3 – 2.1 – 2.1 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 1.8, 6+) to advance from #19 to #17. No sooner does Greater Media‘s WMGK “Classic Rock 102.9” pick up one half share than it forfeits nearly twice as much (6.0 – 6.5 – 5.6, -.9, third to fifth, 6+). Dating back to September, the 6+-trends for “Classic Rock 102.9” have been -.6, +.7, -.4, -.8, +.7, +.5, -.4, -.6, +1.0, +.5, and now -.9 for a combined net loss of three-tenths. By faltering six-tenths to 3.1 (#12 to #13, 6+), adult hits cluster-mate WBEN-FM “Playing Anything We Feel Like” has its consecutive string of up or flat trends – which produced a combined +1.1 – end at six (2.6 – 2.8 – 2.9 – 3.0 – 3.0 – 3.1 – 3.7, 6+). June’s 3.7 was the best 6+-performance for “Ben” since last October’s 3.9. Down or flat for the sixth straight time for a cumulative -1.3 (3.1 – 3.1 – 2.8 – 2.8 – 2.7 – 2.3 – 1.8, 6+), sports sibling WPEN-FM “The Fanatic” drops from #17 to #19. The market’s (6+) FM sports share is off by another two-tenths, as CBS Radio-owned Philadelphia Phillies flagship WIP-FM is 3.9 – 3.7 (unchanged at #11, 6+). Down or flat for the sixth straight time for a roughly 50% 6+-erosion (3.7 – 3.4 – 3.4 – 3.0 – 2.6 – 2.1 – 1.9, 6+), public WHYY actually moves up from #18 to #17. Down two-tenths, Temple University classical outlet WRTI is without an increase for the sixth successive sweep (2.8 – 2.5 – 2.5 – 1.8 – 1.7 – 1.6 – 1.4, 6+) and departs the top 20 (#20 to #22).
8) Atlanta – Registering a 4.9 (6+) in four of the last six ratings periods, Radio One urban contemporary WHTA busts out a +.6 to 5.4 – its strongest 6+-stat since December’s 5.6 – as “Hot 107.9” advances from sixth to fifth (6+). Without an increase the past four sweeps for a combined -2.1 (8.6 – 7.7 – 7.3 – 6.5 – 6.5, 6+), CBS Radio urban contemporary WVEE “V-103” dials up a +.4 to 6.9, pushing from third to second. The 6.5 by “V-103” in June marked the first time the station fell below a seven-share since August 2014 (6.3, 6+). While Cox Media Group talker WSB-AM holds the top spot for the sixth straight month, it is off by three-tenths (8.4 – 8.1, 6+). In the runner-up slot the past four consecutive sweeps, urban AC sibling WALR “Kiss 104.1 Atlanta’s R&B” follows up June’s six-tenths decline with a whopping -1.2 (7.7 – 7.1 – 5.9, 6+) and slides to third. The 5.9 in July is the lowest 6+-stat for “Kiss” since March 2015 (5.4). Despite a two-tenths decline to 5.9 (6+), contemporary Christian WFSH progresses from fourth to a third-place tie (with WALR). The decrease though does end four straight increases by “104.7 The Fish” which netted three full-shares (3.1 – 3.4 – 4.3 – 5.4 – 6.1, 6+); 6.1 in June represented the strongest 6+-showing for the Salem Media Group facility since May 2015 (6.5). Following six straight up or flat trends yielding a +1.3 (3.6 – 3.7 – 3.7 – 4.0 – 4.0 – 4.2 – 4.9, 6+), iHeartMedia-owned WUBL “94.9 The Bull Atlanta’s New Country Leader” regresses by three-tenths to 4.6 (fifth to seventh, 6+); 4.9 in June was the best 6+-showing for Atlanta’s “Bull” since last July’s 5.3. Steady at #13, Cumulus Media‘s similarly-programmed WKHX “Kicks 101.5” is off by one-tenth (3.6 – 3.5, 6+). The two companies are involved in an Atlanta CHR battle as well, with iHeartMedia’s WWPW “Power 96.1” steady at 4.5 (6+) and Cumulus Media’s WWWQ “All The Hits Q-100” down one-tenth to 4.2 (6+); “Power” and “Q-100” remain at eighth and ninth, respectively.
9) Long Island – Locked on 3.3 (6+) in May and June, CBS Radio New York City classic hits-oldies WCBS-FM explodes with a +.8 to 4.1 as it zooms from #12 to #5. As all-news cluster-mate WINS improves by one-half share (3.2 – 3.7, #13 to #8, 6+), similarly formatted sibling WCBS-AM sputters by that margin (4.0 – 3.5, seventh to tenth, 6+). The market’s (6+) CHR share balloons by +1.3, thanks to gains of six-tenths each by iHeartMedia New York City’s WHTZ “Z-100” (repeating at #1) and Cox Media Group‘s WBLI (fifth to third, 6+), as well as a +.1 from CBS Radio’s WBMP “Amp” (#20 to #16, 6+). On top in Long Island for the sixth successive sweep, “Z-100” is up or flat for the fourth straight time (5.8 – 5.8 – 5.9 – 6.1 – 6.7, 6+), as is “Amp,” which is in 2.0 – 2.9 territory (6+) for the 37th straight ratings period (2.2 – 2.2 – 2.4 – 2.5 – 2.6, 6+). After three straight declines which produced a combined -.7 (3.7 – 3.5 – 3.1 – 3.0, 6+), WBLI is now up for the third successive sweep (3.0 – 3.6 – 4.1 – 4.7, 6+) with its best 6+-share since last August (4.8). The stream for Fordham University-owned triple A WFUV re-appears in print with a .9 and is in a three-way tie at #26.
10) Riverside – On the heels of a +.7 in June, Anaheim Broadcasting classic hits-oldies KOLA dials up another nine-tenths (4.9 – 5.6 – 6.5, 6+) and progresses from third to second. The last time KOLA crossed the six-share threshold (6+) was this past November (6.9). Down or flat the past eight ratings periods for a combined -1.8 (2.8 – 1.9 – 1.8 – 1.7 – 1.4 – 1.3 – 1.1 – 1.1 – 1.0, 6+), Univision Radio Spanish adult hits KRCD “Recuerdo” flashes a +.4 to 1.4 and reaches the top ten (#13 to #10, 6+). Unchanged at #14, this nonetheless marks the seventh straight monthly without a decrease for Los Angeles Angels flagship KLAA (.2 – .3 – .3 – .4 – .6 – .6 -.7 -.8, 6+), which has quadrupled its 6+-stat in that period. Following a one-share increase, which pulled the plug on back-to-back downward trends that produced a combined loss of four-tenths, Entravision Spanish adult hits KLYY “Jose” dips by two-tenths to 7.3 (6+), but is #1 for the eighth consecutive ratings period. After three straight gains that yielded one full-share (2.2 – 2.3 – 2.7 – 3.2, 6+), urban-rhythmic oldies KQIE “Old School 104.7” (unchanged at #7, 6+) drops three-tenths to 3.0 (6+). Off by a combined -1.7 in six straight months without an increase (4.9 – 4.8 – 4.8 – 4.2 – 3.9 – 3.5 – 3.2, 6+), CBS Radio country outlet KFRG “K-Frog” remains in sixth-place; co-owned format partner KXFG has a .1 for the fifth straight time and sits at #21. Starting in February, Anaheim Broadcasting’s KCAL-FM put together three straight 2.0 showings (6+), followed by 1.7 (6+) in May and June. Steady at #9, “96.7 Rocks” has a one-tenth increase to 1.8 (6+). For the fourth straight sweep, Good News Radio contemporary Christian KSGN “Family Friendly” is without an increase (1.9 – 1.8 – 1.8 – 1.5 – 1.4, 6+) but it remains at #10.
11) San Jose – Bragging rights for notching the heftiest (6+) June 2016 – July 2016 increase by any station in the 12 PPM-markets whose data was released on Monday goes to Empire Broadcasting-owned KRTY “Hot Country 95.3” (3.7 – 4.7, +1.0, 6+), which bumps up from sixth to fifth. After consecutive increases which yielded a combined +1.6 (5.9 – 6.5 – 7.5, 6+), Cumulus Media‘s KNBR slumped by six-tenths in May; was up one-tenth in June; but drops four-tenths in July (6.9 – 7.0 – 6.6, 6+). Even so, “The Sports Leader” is #1 in San Jose for the fourth straight time. Three successive positive trends by classic rock cluster-mate KSAN produced a combined +.8 (1.5 – 1.6 – 2.2 – 2.3, 6+), but “107.7 The Bone” relinquishes all of it (plus two-tenths) as it slumps by one full-share to 1.3 and plummets from the top 20 (#14 to #25). Following a -.5 in May and a -.7 in June, Empire Broadcasting-owned news-turned-classic country property KLIV “1590 Country Gold” regresses by another nine-tenths (2.4 – 1.9 – 1.2 – .3, 6+) to slip from #26 to #28; KLIV was +.6 in April. Finishing second for the fourth consecutive time, Univision Radio Spanish adult hits KBRG is off by one half share (6.5 – 6.0, 6+) and “Mas Variedad 100.3” trails KNBR “The Sports Leader” by six-tenths. In 1.0 – 1.8 territory for the 16th straight sweep, Cumulus Media triple A KFOG “The Bay Area’s Original” is flat at 1.6 and remains at #23.
12) Middlesex – Having lost a combined -2.3 in three successive down monthlies (6.4 – 6.0 – 5.3 – 4.4 – 4.1, 6+), Greater Media adult contemporary WMGQ “Magic 98.3 Today’s Hits – Yesterday’s Favorites” adds one-tenth to 4.2 to inch up from seventh to sixth. It is tied there with iHeartMedia adult contemporary WLTW “Lite-FM,” which drops from fifth. Following three straight advances of two-tenths each (5.2 – 5.4 – 5.6 – 5.8, “Lite-FM” regressed by nine-tenths in June and now falters by another seven-tenths (4.9 – 4.2, 6+); 4.2 is the lowest 6+-share for “Lite-FM in Middlesex since May 2013 (4.1). With a +.2 to 3.8 (6+), CBS Radio New York City classic hits-oldies WCBS-FM halts a string of ten successive sweeps without an increase for a cumulative -3.1 (6.7 – 5.9 – 5.9 – 5.7 – 5.3 – 5.2 – 5.1 – 4.8 – 4.4 – 3.6 – 3.6, 6+) and is back in the top ten (#11 to a three-way tie at #9). Owing to a four-tenths gain (to 7.7, 6+), Townsquare Media talker WKXW applies the brakes to four straight negative trends that had resulted in a combined -1.4 (9.1 – 8.9 – 8.5 – 8.1 – 7.7, 6+) and is #1 for the seventh consecutive ratings period. In February, “New Jersey 101.5” crossed the nine-share threshold (6+) for the first time in its PPM-history. On the heels of dropping one-half share in June, Emmis urban AC WBLS “Your #1 Source For R&B” sputters by another six-tenths (6.2 – 5.7 – 5.1, 6+), sliding from third to fourth. Following six straight improvements in this New Jersey market (4.0 – 4.6 – 4.7 – 4.8 – 4.9 – 5.1 – 5.7, 6+), iHeartMedia’s WHTZ “Z-100” falters by one-half share to 5.2 but remains in third-place. After five straight increases for a cumulative +1.3 (2.3 – 2.5 – 2.6 – 2.7 – 3.1 – 3.6, 6+), urban contemporary sibling WWPR “Power 105.1” dips by one-tenth to 3.5, slipping from #11 to #12.
The Farmer That Roared: Doug Stephan is This Week’s Guest on ‘Up Close and Far Out.’ Radio talk show host Doug Stephan, whose daily generalist news/talk morning show is the third longest-running weekday syndicated program in the industry having launched in 1988 (behind Rush Limbaugh by a few months and “America in the Morning” by four years), is the guest on this week’s installment of the PodcastOne hit series “Up Close and Far Out with Michael Harrison.” Stephan discusses his dual career (and arduous schedule) as both a broadcaster and a dairy farmer. In his role as host of the rapidly growing weekend specialty show, “American Family Farmer” (almost 100 affiliates in less than a year), Stephan has stepped up to the plate as a powerful advocate of the beleaguered people who own and operate small farms in the US, that are slowly but systematically being put out of business by the combined interests of big business (“factory farms”) and big government. He and Harrison also talk about the growing “locavore” movement that ties into this issue. (A locavore is a person whose diet consists primarily of locally produced and sold food.) To listen to this fascinating podcast in its entirety, please click here or click on the “Up Close and Far Out” player box located in the right-hand column of every page of Talkers.com and RadioInfo.com.
Talk Rumble Video Posted from TALKERS 2016: Bridging the Generations. One of the highlights of the recent TALKERS 2016: Bridging the Generations convention – “The Talk Rumble” – is posted today (8/2) on Talkers.com. The panel discussion was part of the 19th annual installment of the talk media industry’s longest-running and most important national convention that took place May 20 on the campus of Hofstra University in Hempstead, NY. Moderated by TALKERS publisher Michael Harrison and co-moderated by CBS News VP Harvey Nagler, participants include (in alphabetical order): Howie Carr, host, Howie Carr Radio Network; Brian Kilmeade, host Fox News Radio/Fox News Channel; Sid Rosenberg, host, WABC, New York; Dr. Daliah Wachs, host Genesis Communications Network; Lisa Wexler, host, WGCH, Greenwich, CT: Larry Young, host, WOLB, Baltimore; and John Ziegler, host Envision Networks. To view the Talk Rumble in its entirety, please click here. Stay tuned to Talkers.com for more videos from TALKERS 2016: Bridging the Generations that will be posted in the days and weeks to come.
Greater Media Re-Brands WBOS ‘ALT 92.9 Boston’s Alternative.’ With the new handle – “ALT 92.9 Boston’s Alternative” – comes a new clock providing hour-long music blocks. Greater Media says it is solidifying “the alternative music position on WBOS-FM by rebranding the station as ‘ALT 92.9’ in Boston. WBOS program director Ken West says, “We are passionate about delivering our content in a non-cluttered, non-controversial, pure play music environment by playing the most music. In doing so, we are offering the ALT 92.9 Promise: 60 Minutes of Music after every commercial break.” Station marketing director Sean Doherty adds, “The station’s new branding, image and logo will exemplify the fresh programming of ‘ALT 92.9’ and appeal to the active lifestyle of our audience.” Check out the station’s new website here.
Jarnigan Named OM at Cumulus Knoxville. The three-station Cumulus Media cluster in Knoxville, Tennessee has a new operations manager as Jeff Jarnigan is appointed to the post. The company says Jarnigan has more than 30 years of radio broadcasting experience in the Knoxville market and more than 20 years of experience in programming management. Cumulus operates country WIVK, news/talk WOKI-FM, and sports talk WNML “The Sports Animal.” Jarnigan says, “Being associated with the legendary WIVK, as well as the flagship station for the Vol Network, sports radio WNML, and the home of Phil Williams and Hallerin Hilton Hill, ‘NewsTalk 98.7,’ is akin to winning the radio lottery. These stations are each dominant in their respective formats and have defined success in East Tennessee radio for decades. I am excited to partner with the station teams to continue that success and drive their future growth.”
More RadioInfo Career Moves. Country program director Dean Warfield exits Ryman Hospitality-owned WSM-AM, Nashville after two years with the station…..Programmer and air personality Felix moves from Mapleton Communications’ CHR KTMT, Medford, Oregon to the company’s Spokane CHR KZBD “105.7 NOW FM” to serve as APD and midday jock…..Alpha Media appoints three to regional director of engineering. They are: Trent Muldrow for the Eastern region, based in Columbia, South Carolina; Jeff Caudell for the Western region, based in San Antonio; and Geary Morrill for the Midwest region, based in Saginaw, Michigan.
PPM Analysis: Alternative Rock. RadioInfo managing editor Mike Kinosian presents the first of three format analyses of the performances of rock-formatted radio stations based on data from the Nielsen Audio’s June 2016 PPM survey. Forthcoming are analyses of mainstream rock and adult album alternative or triple A. In today’s report, see charts tracking the AQH share (6+) performances of alt rockers in PPM markets, a chart detailing AQH share fluctuations from June 2015 to June 2016, a chart listing stations by market rank, and more. See it all here.
Talking to One Million Friends: Q104’s Jim Kerr Reflects on His Career. RadioInfo special features correspondent Jeff McKay recently spoke with WAXQ, New York “Q104” morning personality Jim Kerr about his long career on New York City morning radio. In 1974, 21-year-old Kerr arrived in New York from WLS-AM, Chicago – scared out of his wits – but determined to get to know WPLJ’s teenage and 20-something listeners. “I wanted to make friends with those listeners and remain friends with them – forever.” Kerr tells McKay he’d have been happy to have lasted a year in New York, but 42 years later he’s still talking to his “friends” on the radio. Read more here.
TALKERS 2016: Bridging the Generations – Mark Levin Receiving Freedom of Speech Award Video Posted Today. The Livestream video recording of the Freedom of Speech Award presentation – one of the many highlights of the recent TALKERS 2016: Bridging the Generations convention – has been posted today (7/13) to Talkers.com. The 19thannual installment of the talk media industry’s longest-running and most important convention took place on Friday, May 20 on the fabulous campus of Hofstra University in Hempstead, New York. The video shows the opening round of the Awards Ceremony segment of the gathering in which Cumulus Media/Westwood One syndicated host Mark Levin was presented the 2016 Gene Burns Memorial Award for Freedom of Speech. The ceremony includes remarks by GCN syndicated host Dr. Joy Browne, Awards Ceremony emcee and Cumulus Media/Westwood One host Jim Bohannon, and TALKERS publisher Michael Harrison. To view the video, please click here. More videos from the convention will be posted to Talkers.com in the days and weeks ahead.
RadioInfo Tidbits. North Texas air personality Zac Grantham – PD and morning host at Alpha Media’s KMKT, Bells, Texas “93.1 Katy Country” – organized the recent #PrayForDallas vigil that took place at Fairview Park in Sherman, Texas July 8. The event drew more than 200 members of the community, including representatives from local state law enforcement agencies, who all joined hands in small groups to show support for residents and officers in Dallas, North Texas, and the entire country…..iHeartMedia, Clear Channel Outdoor Americas and National Summer Learning Association are teaming up to help close the education achievement gap by supporting the expansion of access to summer learning opportunities. The national public service campaign will stress the importance of keeping kids learning, safe and healthy this summer. iHeartMedia will air public service announcements voiced by First Lady Michele Obama across its more than 850 radio stations in July and August…..One Republic’s Ryan Tedder (center) sat down in the Westwood One studios with Zach Sang (right) recently. Tedder spoke candidly about his feelings on YouTube musicians, DJs and dance music, Wikipedia, and his frustrations with the band One Direction. He also did a Ryan Seacrest impression.
Hip-Hop & R&B “Bounces” to Detroit. The mystery regarding what would succeed sports on Greater Media Detroit’s WMGC has been answered: It’s “105.1 The Bounce – Detroit’s Throwback Hip Hop and R&B.” Representative artists will span from 2Pac and Ice Cube to Drake and Rihanna. Vice president and market manager Steve Chessare states, “Greater Media is thrilled to unveil this fun and unique new format in the Motor City. We look forward to providing a fun, fresh new sound featuring some of the best throwback hip hop and R&B sounds over the past for our listeners to enjoy.” Greater Media senior vice president of program development Buzz Knight adds, “We are thrilled that our great Detroit cluster is adding a new brand for our audience and our customers.” Detroit’s “Bounce” was introduced today (Friday, 7/1) at 12:00 noon and is playing 10,000 songs in a row; its on-air line-up will be announced soon. News of an impending WMGC format transition was made earlier this week. In the past six Nielsen Audio PPM ratings sweeps, the sports station failed to rise above a one-share (6+). Its .9 in May places it at #23, while CBS Radio‘s WXYT-FM “The Ticket” not only notches a 7.3 (6+), it reigns at #1.
WYCD’s Lee Records Milestone. When WYCD afternoon drive talent Linda Lee celebrated her 20th year on the CBS Radio outlet yesterday (Thursday, 6/30), she became the longest-running consecutive female country air personality in Detroit history. Senior vice president and market manager of CBS Radio Detroit Debbie Kenyon notes, “Linda’s longstanding career with WYCD is a testament to her talent and ability. She truly is one of the greatest air personalities in the business.” Operations manager/program director Tim Roberts remarks, “For 20 great years, Detroit country music fans have laughed, cried, loved, and jammed to great music in their lives with Linda always by their side. She has been the champion of the community through her devotion to charities and fans in general and an awesome asset for the entire country music industry.” Detroit native Lee adds, “This is my home and I raised my own family here. I will forever be grateful to CBS Radio for this opportunity to do what I love and live my dream for over two decades here in my hometown. I was a loyal WYCD listener prior to starting my on-air career in country radio. My time here has been a blessing beyond measure. I am humbled – and beyond grateful – for all the love and support I have always been given from my WYCD family and our loyal listeners.” Lee began her career at WYCD as a member of the morning show, later teaming for 16 years with Chuck Edwards on the “Edwards & Lee” afternoon drive show. When Edwards moved to mornings late last year, Lee and Rob Stone were paired for the (3:00 pm – 7:00 pm) “Rob & Linda” show. Part of an April three-way logjam at #10, WYCD piles on one full-share in Nielsen Audio‘s May PPM sweep to April’s six-tenths gain (3.7 – 4.3 – 5.3, 6+) and rockets to a fifth-place tie; 5.3 is the best 6+-stat for “99.5 Detroit’s Country” in nearly a year (5.3, July 2015). With a 7.3 (6+), WYCD sports sibling WXYT-FM “The Ticket” is the market pacesetter; Cumulus Media‘s WDRQ “Detroit’s Hottest Country Hits” is at #18 (2.5, 6+).
KFMB-FM Names Vasquez APD. In addition to assistant program director duties at KFMB-FM “100.7 KFM-BFM,” Mike Vasquez will be the 7:00 pm – 12:00 midnight on-air talent of the San Diego rocker. Program director Garett Michaels remarks, “With Mike’s deep knowledge of the San Diego market, his strong record of ratings success, and his unbridled passion for rock and roll, he is the outstanding choice to join ‘KFM-BFM’ as our assistant program director. I am stoked to have him as a collaborator and teammate.” Vasquez comments, “I am so pumped to be joining the ‘KFM-BFM’ team. There is a winner’s mentality here and everybody brings [his or her] ‘A’-game on a daily basis. I thrive in this type of environment and look forward to contributing to our team’s success.” For the past 16 years, Vasquez has worked at cross-town smooth jazz-turned-adult contemporary KXSN “Sunny” (formerly KIFM). He began his radio career in the mid-1980s at Fresno’s KEZL. KFMB-FM has been in the 3.4 – 3.8 range the past five Nielsen Audio ratings sweeps (3.4 – 3.8 – 3.5 – 3.7 – 3.5, 6+) and ranks #12 in May; “Sunny” is on top with a 6.6 (6+).
iHeartMedia Charlotte, Martz Media Team for “Ke Buena.” For the past two years, iHeartMedia Charlotte has been airing a sports format on translator W254AZ (98.7), but as a result of a multi-year agreement with Martz Media, it transitions that programming to Latin contemporary as “Ke Buena 98.7 FM.” According to the president of iHeartMedia’s Carolina region Dave Carwile, “We are very excited to have the opportunity to help support and broaden the entertainment spectrum for the Hispanic/Latino community in the Charlotte area.” Martz Media president Roger Martinez comments, “We are thoroughly excited to provide our Charlotte Hispanic community a diversified taste in Hispanic radio programming. Charlotte has grown substantially these past several years, including its Hispanic/Latino population. From huge community events to the overwhelming positive audience response, we have seen such great activity coming from Charlotte. We are excited to be part of the community and provide a fresh music and community engagement perspective to the Hispanic and Latino population in the Charlotte area.” Led by iHeartMedia classic rock and country siblings WRFX “The Fox” (7.2, +1.1 from April, #1, 6+) and WKKT “Cat Country” (7.1, +1.1, #2, 6+), an even 20 stations are listed in Nielsen Audio‘s May 2016 PPM report, with none possessing an Hispanic/Latino-geared format label; W254AZ did not appear in print.
Joyner Set to Return to Orlando’s “Star.” One week from Monday (7/11), the REACH Media-distributed “Tom Joyner Morning Show” (6:00 am – 10:00 am) will reappear in Orlando on Cox Media Group urban AC WCFB “Star 94.5.” WCFB program director Michael Saunders remarks, “The people demanded we bring Tom back to their favorite Central Florida radio station and we did – we are thrilled. Tom Joyner and ‘Star 94.5’ are synonymous and we plan to keep it that way for many years to come.” Explaining that he cannot kept a secret, Joyner notes, “When I heard we were coming back on the air in one of my favorite markets, it took everything I had to not to spill it. I gained 20 pounds holding that big news inside. Now I can finally celebrate along with the wonderful audience we have missed so much. Every morning we promise to entertain, inform, and empower.” Down a combined -1.4 in consecutive monthlies (6.2 – 5.0 – 4.8, 6+), “Star 94.5” rebounds with a +.6 to 5.4 (6+) and remains at #7 (Nielsen Audio May 2016 PPM, 6+); on top is iHeartMedia adult contemporary WMGF “Magic 107.7” with a 9.6 (6+).
Legendary Album Rockers Foghat Celebrate 40 Years with New Album. Actually the group never went away. RadioInfo music and pop culture editor Duane Doobie Jr. is excited about their latest. Under The Influence (Foghat Records) by legendary rockers Foghat dropped last week and if you haven’t heard it (and you are a rock station of just about any category) you and your listeners are missing out. Doobie says, “It’s a big bite of bluesy boogie that rivals any of their previous releases.” Though, if you have a hankering for the familiar, the group has revised and re-released their classic hit, “Slow Ride” as one of its many standout tracks. “We wanted to do it because it was the 40th anniversary, and it’s kind of a nod and a tribute to Rod Price and to Dave Peverett” drummer Roger Earl, an original member still in Foghat’s lineup, tells RadioInfo. The title track, “Under the Influence” is the obvious track to add for most rock radio stations. Though, “Knock it Off,” “Ghost,” “Hot Mama” and “Heart Gone Cold” are excellent tracks for more specialized airplay. In an era in which even “tribute” bands to the great rockers of the golden era draw hundreds, even thousands, to their concerts, a venerable hard-working group like Foghat – that still has ties to its original incarnation – is a living breathing treasure that deserves respect and attention from those who see rock as an era and not just this week’s passing blip on the radar screen. Drawing from their collective musical influences, the band not only brought in some special guests from their past who helped launch and inspire the Foghat story, but also invited some new friends into the mix to continue the journey of this never idle band. They started recording at their Florida studio, Boogie Motel South in 2013. In addition to Foghat members Roger Earl, Craig MacGregor, Charlie Huhn and Bryan Bassett, two additional figures helped shape the sessions – Buddy Guy alumni, Scott Holt, who lent a hand in the writing, and added fantastic guitar and vocals to several tracks, and Grammy-winning producer/songwriter, Tom Hambridge. With their resident genius, guitarist Bryan Bassett at the helm, the project was going slow since Bryan was doing triple duty, playing, writing and recording the tracks, while in the midst of a Foghat tour. So Tom Hambridge came aboard. According to Roger Earl, “I met Tom when presenting three awards to Buddy Guy and Tom, his producer, at the Memphis Blues Awards. Tom said that he was a fan, and would love to produce a Foghat record. Putting that in the back of my mind, this was the perfect opportunity. Tom came down to Boogie Motel South to meet the band and we clicked and started writing together immediately. Working with him was inspirational!” Foghat will tour in support of this new album including a gala record release party at B.B. Kings in New York City on September 21st. For more information or to arrange an interview with Roger Earl, email Chip Ruggieri at firstname.lastname@example.org. To listen to the new version of “Slow Ride,” please click here.
NY’s Hot Summer Extends Through Labor Day. Beginning this (July 4) weekend and lasting throughout the summer, Emmis New York rhythmic CHR WQHT “Hot 97” will feature “Hot Summer Mix” weekends. Director of programming Pio Ferro explains, “We created the ‘Hot Summer Mix’ weekend concept last year. Our listeners absolutely loved it, so we wanted to give [them] what they want by bringing it back this summer.” The initial “Hot Summer Mix” weekend of the year starts today (Friday, 7/1) at 12:00 noon and will continue until after 12:00 midnight Tuesday (7/5). In an extremely tight rhythmic CHR market battle, “Hot 97” (3.6, #11, Nielsen Audio May 2016, 6+) holds a one-tenth lead over cross-town iHeartMedia-owned WKTU (3.5, #12, 6+).
Pittsburgh Community Broadcasting Taps O’Reilly President/CEO. The appointment of Terry O’Reilly as president/chief executive officer follows the recent consolidation of talk WESA and triple A WYEP into a single public media entity. Pittsburgh Community Broadcasting Corporation board president Harris Jones comments, “We are excited that Terry will lead the team we have built. His experience and expertise will help accelerate our efforts to deliver high-quality global, national and local music, news, information and cultural programming that is engaging, relevant and inspiring. His diverse background also serves us well as we extend our strong broadcast brands across digital media and other emerging platforms.” O’Reilly states, “It is an honor to join WYEP and WESA, the two leading public radio stations in my hometown of Pittsburgh. The media industry is at a critical inflection point and public radio is well-positioned to thrive by focusing on what it does best – allowing each of us the opportunity to hear, listen, learn, and participate. Pittsburgh’s public radio stations remain remarkably strong, with growing audiences, in this changing media environment.” For the past seven years, O’Reilly – who begins his new duties in just over four weeks (8/1) – was senior vice president and chief content officer for Twin Cities PBS. Prior to that, he spent approximately 30 years in the commercial television industry. Over the last six Nielsen Audio PPM ratings periods, WESA (1.9, #12, 6+) has registered a 1.9 four times and a 2.0 the other two; WYEP (#13, 6+) notches a 1.3 for the third time in the last six sweeps. The market’s 6+ market leader is iHeartMedia classic hits-oldies outlet WWSW (10.2, 6+).
Toledo’s WWWM Re-labels To “Q-105.5.” The slogan shift by WWWM, Toledo from “Channel 105.5” to “Q-105.5” is not associated with a format change, as the Cumulus Media property remains hot AC – but it does adopt new calls – WQQO. Regional vice president and Cumulus Media Toledo market manager Andy Stuart reveals, “Our market research showed that people really like the letters of the alphabet. More specifically, they love the letter ‘Q.’ It is simply a matter of giving listeners what they want with this new brand. The station is perfectly positioned and we are very pleased with the growth [the former WWWM] is showing.” On-air personnel at the facility remain the same with Denny Schaffer in morning drive; Tim Graves mid-days; Johny D in PM drive; and Adam Bomb handling nights. Among persons 12+ in Nielsen Audio‘s winter 2016 sweep, WWWM ranks #8 (3.5); country sibling WKKO “K-100” sets the pace with a 9.5 (12+). The (12+) spring, summer, fall (2015) trends for WWWM (now WQQO) were 2.6 – 3.4 – 3.4.
Black Crown Initiate Visits WSOU. Earlier this week, progressive metal band Black Crown Initiate dropped in on WSOU, the student-run radio station of Seton Hall University, for an on-air interview with music director Mike Colantuoni. Group members Andy Thomas and Jesse Beahler commented on the writing process; the meaning of their latest album (“Selves We Cannot Forgive”); their upcoming tour; and pros/cons of streaming services. Colantuoni states that, “Having Black Crown Initiate at WSOU was an incredible experience. I greatly value having newer, promising bands in our studios. WSOU is known for being tastemakers in the metal community and I embrace that opportunity to provide our listeners an insider’s perspective to the music.” WSOU’s signal reaches all five New York City boroughs, as well as much of northern and central New Jersey. Andy Thomas (left) and Jesse Beahler (right) of Reading, Pennsylvania’s Black Crown Initiate with WSOU music director Mike Colantuoni (center).
Seacrest, Usher Engage in “Intimate Conversation.” Notwithstanding “American Idol” has concluded its final season, the talent competition’s host – Ryan Seacrest – still has a plethora of other responsibilities that keep him busy. Earlier this week, for example, the morning personality of iHeartMedia Los Angeles mainstream CHR KIIS “Kiss-FM” was in Paris during the Cannes Lions Festival, where he discussed “hustle” and entrepreneurship with eight-time Grammy winner Usher. Introduced by iHeartMedia chair/chief executive officer Bob Pittman, the “Intimate Conversation with Usher” focused on the path to success and what it takes to build a lasting career. “Even though I created a benchmark to start,” Usher states, “I found new motivation in creating diversity as an artist. If I call myself an entertainer, then that means I should be able to do it all, I should be able to reach out, to have an understanding of different genres and to have an idea about how music is made.” He stresses that the point is to evolve. “We all individually are brands – the more we diversify and reach into other areas the more we grow.” Invoking the term “hustle,” the host of Premiere Networks’ “AT40” asks Usher to define it and the singer candidly states, “You’ve got to have chutzpah and defy the ideas that were set before you. If I continue to push on my vision, eventually somebody other than [me] will believe it too. It only takes one star to light the universe.” As far as the entrepreneurial spirit is concerned, Usher emphasizes, “Be willing to be the first there and the last to leave. Stand strong and be benevolent in your pursuit of what you believe in.” In what is bound to be music to the ears of radio programmers throughout the United States, Usher graciously maintains that the medium is “the only tool” in his opinion that “still matters with making a genuine connection with the consumer. Radio program directors and personalities have the ability and the responsibility to curate the story of the artists in the right way.” Touring is “definitely on the horizon” for Usher, while Seacrest explains that he (Seacrest) is “someone who thinks that where there is a void, I need to fill it. I am trying to have patience and a little bit of discipline. I am waiting to host the ‘Olympics’ this summer, do a bunch of things with NBC, and after that – see if there is something else to do.”
New Jersey Broadcasters Association Annual Conference a Success in Atlantic City. The 69th annual NJBA convention just wrapped up two-days at Caesars Atlantic City (6/22-23) and by all measures was a successful event. Several hundred broadcasters from the Garden State and beyond gathered to discuss the state of the radio industry both regionally and nationally. The theme of the conference was “The Power of Broadcast” and it included sessions on programming, sales and technology as well as an awards ceremony, Hall of Fame induction and radio row. TALKERS/RadioInfo special features correspondent Jeff McKay was in attendance and provides coverage of the sessions and speakers. To read it in its entirety, please click here.
Page Ends Mid-day Search. After having worked weekend and swing shifts at Cumulus Media Atlanta’s WNNX “Rock 100.5,” Alyssa Page will join KNDD “107.7 The End” for mid-day duty the middle of next month. Page succeeds former music director-mid-day talent “Pepper,” who left the Entercom Seattle alternative station four months ago. KNDD program director Leslie Scott comments, “Alyssa’s sense of humor, grit, and passion make her the perfect addition to our already strong team. I cannot wait for Seattle to get to know her.” Page remarks, “It’s not everyday you get to go work for your dream station. ‘The End’ is unique and extremely authentic in everything they do and I have so much respect for the brand. I am thrilled and honored to be joining such a tremendous team.” Down or flat for the fourth successive sweep (3.8 – 3.7 – 3.3 – 3.1 – 3.1, 6+), “The End” finishes at #15 in Seattle’s May 2016 Nielsen Audio PPM report; Hubbard Broadcasting CHR KQMV is #1 with a 6.2 (6+).
Townsquare Media Atlantic City & The Shore Officially Names Ruble Market President. It is “official,” in that, Michael Ruble had been market president and chief revenue officer for Townsquare Media‘s Atlantic City & The Shore’s (New Jersey) properties on an interim basis. He now handles both of those responsibilities without the “interim” prefix. Senior vice president of operations Rob Williams notes that, “Mike has been an exceptional leader in Atlantic City for years, building a terrific team that has consistently performed at a high level. In Toms River, we have a team with significant strengths and talents; wonderful brands; and the foundation to grow to new heights with Mike’s leadership.” Three of the company’s Monmouth and Ocean County stations include talkers WOBM-AM, WADB, and WPGG. The rest of its outlets in that area are adult contemporary WOBM-FM “Soft Rock 92.7”; hot AC WJLK “The Point”; AC WFPG “Lite Rock 96.9”; sports WENJ “97.3 ESPN“; hot AC WSJO “SOJO 104.9”; classic rock WCHR “The Hawk”; and WPUR “Cat Country 107.3.” Ruble joined Townsquare Media five years ago as market manager-general sales manager. He previously was a market manager-general sales manager with Millennium Radio Group; national sales manager for Citadel Broadcasting; and an account executive with Spring Broadcasting.
Led Zep’s Stairway to Vindication. A jury in Los Angeles yesterday (Thursday, 6/23) ruled that Led Zeppelin did not pilfer any portion of its most famous track – “Stairway to Heaven” – from the 1968 Spirit instrumental “Taurus.” According to a statement issued on behalf of Led Zeppelin members Robert Plant and Jimmy Page, “We are grateful for the jury’s conscientious service and pleased that it has ruled in our favor, putting to rest questions about the origins of ‘Stairway to Heaven’ and confirming what we have known for 45 years. We appreciate our fans’ support and look forward to putting this legal matter behind us.” A Warner Music Group spokesperson notes, “Supporting our artists and protecting their creative freedom is paramount. We are pleased that the jury found in favor of Led Zeppelin, re-affirming the true origins of ‘Stairway to Heaven.’ Led Zeppelin is one of the greatest bands in history. Jimmy Page and Robert Plant are peerless songwriters who created many of rock’s most influential and enduring songs.” Owing to a legal matter, the jury was not allowed to listen to original “Stairway to Heaven” and “Taurus” recordings to determine their verdict. Instead, an expert performed both songs based on the original sheet music. Page and Plant testified they did not remember ever hearing Spirit’s “Taurus.” The original complaint against Led Zeppelin was filed just over two years ago (May 2014) on behalf of the trust of the late Randy Craig Wolfe, a Spirit guitarist.
“Brexit” Fallout Felt in U.S. Following yesterday’s “Brexit” vote by Brits to separate from the European Union (Thursday, 6/23), several major United States-based media companies such as Fox, Viacom, Netflix, and Apple opened their stateside trading days down billions of dollars in stock valuation. Netflix and Apple though were among those surging back within the first 10 minutes of the U.S. trading day. The Pound dropped to its lowest valuation in decades, and stock prices overseas sunk. British Prime Minister David Cameron has stepped down, vowing there will be a new PM in place by October. In a statement of support from the White House, President Barack Obama comments, “The people of the United Kingdom have spoken, and we respect their decision. The special relationship between the United States and the United Kingdom is enduring, and the United Kingdom’s membership in NATO remains a vital cornerstone of U.S. foreign, security, and economic policy.” Given economic implications domestically and abroad, this is bound to be a big topic today – even on FM music-intensive outlets.
Nash Harmonizer. The winner from the fifteenth – and final – season of “American Idol,” Trent Harmon visited WNSH “Nash FM,” New York yesterday (Thursday, 6/23) to chat with 3:00 pm – 7:00 pm personality Jesse Addy . Currently working on his first album, Harmon performed some of his songs, including “What Are You Listening To,” “Falling,” and “There’s a Girl” for station listeners.
RadioInfo Tidbits. Six-year WNOW “100.9 Radio Now,” Indianapolis morning show talents Kyle & Rachel have done their final broadcast on the Radio One CHR. On his Facebook page, Kyle Smelser writes, “Simply put, we were not renewed for another year and they want to go [in] a different direction.” Meanwhile, Radio One notes that the market “has been a breeding ground for the nation’s top talent” and the company acknowledges it has “the perfect opportunity for an air personality to gain notoriety locally and industry respect for leading our morning show.” With a goal of transforming “the landscape of morning radio in Indianapolis,” it seeks “to hire the brightest talent, with a winning spirit we can find who demonstrates passion for our shared mission.”
WMMR Struts Its Stuff. This past Monday (6/20), Greater Media Philadelphia rocker WMMR kicked off its series of lunchtime performances at Ardmore Music Hall. There was a limited number of tickets for the invitation-only show to see the young British band The Struts, who performed “Could Have Been Me” and “Kiss” from their current album (“Everybody Wants”); a spontaneous meet-and-greet followed. Pictured with The Struts are WMMR personalities Blake Dannen (far left), Jacky Bam Bam (far right), and “Rabbi” (front).
Cumulus Makes Change at CFO Role; Abbot Succeeds Hannan. There has been chatter in the industry lately about looming personnel changes in the corporate tier at Cumulus Media and now the company reveals a new face in the chief financial officer post. John F. Abbot is appointed executive vice president, treasurer and chief financial officer effective July 1. He replaces Joseph P. “J.P.” Hannan, who the company says resigned his position after six years in order to pursue other interests. Hannan will assist the company for several months to ensure a smooth transition. Abbot comes to Cumulus from his most recent position as EVP and CFO of Telx Holdings Inc., a provider of connectivity, co-location and cloud services in the data center industry. Abbot’s experience also includes spent as EVP/CFO for cable’s Insight Communications Company, Inc. and as managing director for the Global Media and Communications Group of the investment banking division at Morgan Stanley. Abbot says, “I am excited to join Mary [Berner] and the senior leadership team at this important juncture in the company’s evolution. I join Cumulus with an appreciation for the headway that has already been made around the company’s four key strategies as well as a keen understanding of the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead. I look forward to using my skills and experience to help maximize value as we work to deliver on the turnaround.”
More RadioInfo Career Moves. Tucson rhythmic oldies KTGV “The Groove” is adding Krystal Pino to the air staff to host the morning drive show beginning in July. Pino joins the Scripps-owned station from her most recent gig working for Westwood One’s 24/7 music format division as a personality and programmer…..Cumulus Media promotes Jiggy to program director for its rhythmic CHR simulcast KWIN, Lodi/KWNN, Turlock in the Modesto-Stockton market. Jiggy was APD under former PD MoJoe Roberts who’s now with Alpha Media at country KUPL, Portland “98.7 The Bull.”…..Premiere Networks manager of affiliate marketing Brittany Brodbeck is leaving the company after seven years to deal with health issues.
WABC’s Joan Hamburg Honored with Lifetime Achievement Gracie. The 41st Annual Gracie Awards Luncheon took place at Cipriani on 42nd in New York yesterday (6/21). The ceremony was presented by The Alliance for Women in Media Foundation. Host Robin Meade led the program alongside presenters Beverly Bond, Emme, Erica Hill and Ginger Zee. The Gracie Awards were presented to honorees which were previously announced on March 21 in recognition of their successes in the media industry. Lifetime Achievement Honoree Joan Hamburg was presented her award by close friend Alan Alda (pictured at right). Ginger Zee was not only a presenter but an acceptor for Good Morning America’s win for Outstanding Talk Show- News. In presenting Hamburg with her honor, Alda said, “In a media industry where talk radio is overwhelmingly dominated by men, Joan is a woman’s voice that is graceful and lively but authoritative.” As part of the program, Canadian singer/songwriter Ruth B performed her viral hit “Lost Boy” and her unreleased single “In My Dreams.”
Legendary WMCA ‘Good Guy’ Dandy Dan Daniel Dies. Legendary DJ and one-time WMCA “Good Guy” Dandy Dan Daniel died suddenly on Tuesday (6/21). Dandy Dan got his start on the radio back in 1955 on KXYZ, Houston. He landed on WMCA, New York in 1961 and stayed there for nine years. After leaving WMCA he worked in New York on WHN (now WEPN), WYNY-FM, and WCBS-FM. See Art Vuolo’s video tribute to Dandy Dan here.
Coldplay’s Chris Martin Performs at iHeartMedia-MediaLink’s VIP Dinner. This is the fifth year that iHeartMedia and MediaLink have hosted the intimate VIP Dinner at Hotel du Cap-Eden-Rock during the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity. Last night (6/21), Chris Martin of Coldplay performed song including “Viva,” “Clocks,” “Fix You,” and “Up & Up.” He also did renditions of Prince’s “Raspberry Beret,” David Bowie’s “Life and on Mars,” and – as you see in the photo here – he pulled Will Smith (left) on stage to beatbox to the song “Men in Black” while he played piano (right).