Tag: "New York"
Duane Doobie Jr.’s Picks of the Week. RadioInfo’s hard-working co-music editor, Duane Doobie Jr., backed by a growing team of information-contributing researchers and golden-eared, trench broadcasters, including this week: on-air personalities Bayley Brown from WKLC-FM, St. Albans, West Virginia “Rock 105”; Matt James, golden-eared, on air personality at “T-100” WCLT in Newark, OH; Bill Phipps the golden-eared afternoon personality at WSIG, Mt. Jackson, Virginia “Real Country 96.9;” Jered Petrey, GM, and the music committee from the award-winning, student-run high school radio station at Pendleton Heights High School in Pendleton, Indiana; plus internet sensation The Iceman, provides programmers with musical suggestions worthy of the attention of pro-active radio formats. You’ll be turned on to some of the exciting artists and music buzzing out there just over the horizon from the worlds of pop, rock, country and EDM. This week’s selection posted today (5/6) includes such names as: Hozier, Manika, Snoh Aalegra, Kalin & Myles, Carly Rae Jepsen, Madisen Ward & The Mama Bear, Peter Rivera, Allen Stone, Seth Glier, Coleman Hell, Modest Mouse, Kopecky, Logan Mize, Canaan Smith, Corey Smith, Zac Brown Band, Aaron Watson, Rolling Stones, Bobby Nourmand, Everything Everything, Catey Shaw, French Horn Revolution, Britney Spears & Iggy Azalea, Neon Trees, Lee Brice, among others. To check out this valuable information, please click here.
Strada Adds CMG Miami Programming Duties. We reported yesterday that Cox Media Group Miami mainstream CHR WFLC “Hits 97-3″ director of programming & branding Jill Strada would take on “temporary” programming oversight of urban contemporary sibling WEDR “99 Jamz” (RadioInfo, Tuesday 5/5). That situation, however, quickly expands as Strada is now given that title on a fulltime basis for both CMG outlets; it was announced late last week that WEDR program director Derrick Baker had exited the station. According to Cox Media Group Miami vice president and general manager Rob Babin, “Jill has done an amazing job of developing the ‘Hits 97.3′ brand, making it a top-rated station in Miami. Combined with her urban programming background, Jill’s ability to develop strategy and coach talent is a key factor in her new leadership position with ’99 Jamz.'” Strada thanked several Cox Media Group executives, including Babin, “for the opportunity to lead the incredibly talented ’99 Jamz’ staff,” and “to take the legacy of this heritage station, as well as [WFLC], to new heights.” It was exactly one year ago that Strada became director of programming & branding for WFLC. She joined the station after a 16-month stint in Boston as assistant program director & digital media brand manager of Greater Media rhythmic hot AC WBQT “Hot 96.9.” Her past credits include programming cross-town Miami rhythmic CHR WPOW “Power 96″; working at Emmis New York as PD of WRKS “98.7 – Kiss-FM” and assistant program director/music director of rhythmic CHR WQHT “Hot 97″; and – for nearly nine years – programming Cox Media Group Orlando rhythmic CHR WPYO “Power 95.3.” Among persons 6+ in Miami’s latest Nielsen Audio PPM report (March 2015), WFLC is in a three-way tie at #7 (4.0), while WEDR ranks #11 (3.7). Meanwhile, their urban AC sibling – WHQT “Hot 105″ – remains the market’s #1 station for the 47th straight month (7.8).
More RadioInfo Career Moves. Taking over as the new program director of Cumulus Media’s WOGT, Chattanooga “107.9 NASH Icon” is Reid Thrush. He joins Cumulus from New South Communications in Jackson, Mississippi, replacing John Kelly…..Evening personality Tyler Reese exits WSIX, Nashville after two years with the iHeartMedia country station. Reese also served as APD and music director…..Charlie Quinn resigns from his program director post at CBS RADIO’s hot AC KYXY, San Diego for family reasons. Sister CHR KEGY “Energy 107.3” PD Chris Patyk will add programming duties for KYXY…..Jonathan Shuford takes over the program director position at iHeartMedia’s hot AC WRVW, Nashville “107.5 The River.” He replaces John Mayer who recently assumed the PD post at the company’s CHR WFLZ, Tampa. Shuford moves to Nashville from iHeartMedia’s Louisville cluster where he programmed CHR WNRW “98.9 Radio Now” and hot AC WLGX “100.5 My FM.”…..Twelve-year morning show “Buck & Dex” is out at iHeartMedia’s alternative KTEG, Albuquerque “104.1 The Edge.” The station has not named a new morning show yet…..At Mapleton Communications’ country KDRK, Spokane, Jamie Patrick adds assistant program director duties to his morning show host and music director responsibilities…..Tampa-based Genesis Communications names Alex Tallitsch digital director. Tallitsch most recently served as social media coordinator for the Times Square Ball Drop and as digital director for the Green Bay Packers-dedicated site cheeseheadtv.com…..At Advanced Media Partners-owned CHR WPIA, Peoria, Illinois, Liam McCluskey moves from evenings to afternoon drive to make way for new night host John Govia. Also, Amber Miller is promoted from part to full time as promotions director…..WOW Media LLC announces Steve Bossin joins the company as director of business development for the company that operates oWOW – the Northeast Ohio online “Timeless” rock music station.
Concord Bicycle Music Group Acquires Indie Labels. Independent rock music labels Wind-up Records and Fearless Records have been acquired by Concord Bicycle Music. Label chief corporate development officer Steve Salm says the deal underscores the company’s commitment to develop and grow its rock and alternative music portfolio. The acquisition of Wind-up and Fearless closely follows Concord Bicycle Music’s recent purchase of storied independent labels Vanguard and Sugar Hill Records. New York-based Wind-up Records was founded in 1997 and is responsible for establishing and breaking rock and alternative artists including: Civil Twilight, The Griswolds, The Virginmarys, Crobot, Young Guns, Strange Talk Revivalists, SPEAK, Aranda and Filter. The roster also includes singer-songwriters Five for Fighting, Jillette Johnson and Genevieve. Formed in 1994, Fearless Records became known for launching the careers of respected punk rock acts such as Plain White T’s, At The Drive-In, Bigwig, The Aquabats, and Sugarcult. In recent years, the Culver City, California-based label has become an internationally renowned hotbed for up-and-coming rock bands, including: Pierce The Veil, Breathe Carolina, The Maine, Mayday Parade, The Word Alive, Motionless In White, Alesana, and Every Avenue. Fearless Records is also home to the “Punk Goes” series, which is one of the top themed compilation series available.
NYC Radio Women Celebrate Cinco de Mayo. Pictured here are some of the talented women working in New York City radio enjoying a Cinco de Mayo meal and beverages. From left to right are: from WPLJ’s “Todd and Jayde” show, Alyssa Heimrich and Annie; WLTW morning show producer Jamie Megargee; WABC’s Curtis & Kuby producer Flipper; WPLJ morning co-host Jayde Donovan; and WPLJ digital producer Sheila Watko.
iHeartMedia Previews New Podcast Initiative at First-Ever ‘Soundfront’ in NYC. Yesterday, iHeartMedia presented the “Soundfront” event in New York to preview its new original audio programs. The company says this new content “will allow marketers to collaborate with a host of celebrities and talent through customized and creative storytelling.” Speaking about the company’s need to explore the audio-on-demand marketplace is iHeartMedia CMO/EVP Gayle Troberman, who says, “In the age of visual distraction and shorter attention spans, audio has the ability to break through and get heard better than any other advertising. We are seeing increased engagement in audio programming both on air and via podcast, and original audio forces us to get back to the basics of telling stories simply and honestly, which consumers love. We believe most marketers are massively under-invested in the power of sound and the iHeartMedia Soundfront is our opportunity to challenge the industry to explore the creative potential of sound to tell and sell better.” Saying that it is teaming with “a broad spectrum of A-list producers, musicians, actors, music industry veterans and curators,” the company announces some of the people it is working with, including: “Skybound Rundown” (podcast): From the producers of “The Walking Dead” TV show and gaming franchise focusing on the world of indie gaming; “Heart of the Beat” (podcast): Artist and musician Jared Leto will bring sound and storytelling together in this original audio show that allows artists to reveal the method behind their madness; “Who is Marty Hirsch?” (podcast) is the first-ever audio mockumentary, building off successes like “This Is Spinal Tap” and “Almost Famous” to tell a story of a mythical music icon. iHeartMedia has partnered with Trium Entertainment (the creator and executive producer of “The Biggest Loser”) to produce a number of podcasts including: “The Vent” hosted by Jaime Pressly; “Get Mic’d” – a talent search show for the next great iHeartMedia DJ; and “Science of Success” with Jonah Berger. The iHeartMedia-Trium relationship will also produce videocasts and the hiring away of Big Boy from Emmis in Los Angeles is relevant here as he’ll host “Urban Legends with Big Boy,” a hip hop show. “Z100” New York-based personality Elvis Duran will also host a videocast titled, “The Elvis Sessions” in which he “digs throughout the day-to-day gossip and connects with the true passion that drives artists and celebrities.” Other videocasts will include “On the Fly with Paul Costabile” and “My Journey.” iHeartMedia also used the event to announce an expanded relationship with Snapchat, details of which are expected to come in the future. Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel was in attendance discussing iHeartMedia’s unique positioning to “use the power of sound to drive social results.” Pictured here are (from l-r): iHeartMedia Entertainment Enterprises president John Sykes, iHeartMedia president and CFO Richard Bressler, Snapchat co-founder and CEO Evan Spiegel, and iHeartMedia CEO Bob Pittman.
Facing “Weak Markets,” Emmis Seeks Covenant Relief from Lenders. In a filing with the SEC, Emmis Communications presents historical performance data and forward-looking statements as it seeks covenant relief for the quarters ended May 31, 2015 through February 28, 2017. Emmis says it is outperforming its markets but the problem is that the markets are weak – for example, citing New York figures showing Emmis down 6% while the market as a whole was down 7.3% over the nine-month period ended November 30, 2014. It says the battle between its urban KPWR, Los Angeles and iHeartMedia’s new KRRL (which is benefitting from its luring morning talent Big Boy away from KPWR) is causing it to face “new headwinds.” In New York, the company says the market was weak throughout calendar 2014 – down mid- to high-single digits after being up 5% in calendar 2013. It reports national was off by 30% during the 2014 summer months and down 18% for the nine months ended November 30, 2014. Emmis states that it finished fiscal 2015 under its 6.00x covenant at 5.40x but “wants to constructively manage compliance with sufficient cushion.” It goes on to show its efforts to control costs by noting it has “reduced cash operating costs by $7 million as part of its fiscal 2016 budget.” You can see the entire lender presentation here.
PPM Analysis: Classic Rock. RadioInfo managing editor Mike Kinosian presents the second of three analyses of gold-based formats with today’s look into the performances of classic rock-formatted stations based on Nielsen Audio data from the March 2015 survey. Compared to stations airing the classic hits/oldies format which rank sixth in their markets on average, Kinosian reports their classic rock counterparts rank eighth (6+) on average. “Moreover, based on our March ratings analysis, classic hits/oldies outlets tend to outpoint classic rockers by one full share point (5.50 – 4.53, 6+).” Read more about how classic rockers compare to their performances in the February 2015 survey, how they compare versus the March 2014 survey, where they rank in their markets, how they stack up behind market share leader KSEG, Sacramento (9.1 share, 6+), plus a look at how classic hits/oldies stations and classic rockers fared against each other. Click here.
RadioInfo Career Moves. Nineteen-year morning host Bruce Kayser retires from Schurz Communications-owned adult contemporary WNSN, South Bend, Indiana “Sunny 101.5 FM.” Kayser hosted the show with Jack Reichert and Abby Weppler…..Northeast Ohio radio pro Chuck Matthews signs on with Cleveland-based online rock stream oWOW Radio as production and imaging director. Matthews was most recently with Rubber City Radio in Akron. He’s also served with iHeartMedia at rock/talk WMMS and classic hits WMJI “Majic 105.7.”
Chris Janson Signs with Warner Bros. After Bobby Bones Push. Singer/songwriter Chris Janson got a nice push a few weeks ago from iHeartMedia’s Bobby Bones when the latter played Janson’s song “Buy Me a Boat” on his nationally syndicated program. After that, the song hit the #1 spot on the iTunes Country Chart. Now, Janson is the newest artist to sign with Warner Bros. Records and he’ll be featured on iHeartMedia’s “On The Verge Artist” program. As the most recent “On The Verge Artist,” Janson’s “Buy Me A Boat” will be heard across 140 country radio stations for six consecutive weeks, beginning May 4, 2015. The program includes on-air exposure as well as significant digital and social support across iHeartMedia’s network to introduce new music to listeners.
New Bill Would Prevent Mandated FM Chips in Smartphones. U.S. Reps Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) and Anna Eshoo (D-CA) introduced a bill called “Protecting the Rights of Musicians Act.” The bill would prevent smartphone manufacturers from having to include and activate an FM chip in smartphones. On board supporting the legislation is the Consumer Electronics Association whose president and CEO Gary Shapiro says, “By prohibiting the Federal Communications Commission from imposing the inclusion of radio tuners in mobile devices, this new bill recognizes that consumers and technology innovators – not the government or analog radio broadcasters – are best positioned to determine the functions and features of cutting-edge mobile devices. Importantly, this bill also starts a worthwhile and much needed conversation about digital age music payment systems. We look forward to working with Representatives Blackburn and Eshoo as this bill moves forward through Congress.”
Toni-Marie Tapped as KWNR APD. KUZZ, Bakersfield (California) music director and evening personality Toni-Marie departs the Buck Owens-owned country station for assistant program director/mid-day duties (9:00 am – 2:00 pm) at similarly-formatted iHeartMedia Las Vegas’ KWNR “95.5 The Bull.” KWNR program director JoJo Turnbeaugh comments, “Toni is the perfect fit for the programming team on ‘The Bull.’ Her passion for the music and her skills on the air are going to be huge assets for our team.” Toni-Marie – who begins her new assignment next Monday (4/6) – remarks, “I am very excited about this move to Las Vegas and working for such a legendary station. My time in Bakersfield has given me the opportunity to build a strong foundation that will help me succeed in such a mega-entertainment city like Las Vegas.” She began her radio career in 2001 at Visalia, California’s KJUG.
WLEV Shifts Gears to Morning Drive. Three-year WLEV, Allentown afternoon drive personality Josh Gears segues to wakeup duty (5:00 am – 10:00 am), joining Scott Evans (“Josh & Scott in the Morning”) on the Cumulus Media adult contemporary outlet. Program director Laura St. James comments, “Josh has shown us over the last few months just how deserving he is of this role. It is always great when you can promote from within – and in this case – all the pieces fell perfectly into place.” According to Gears, “I am already getting up early with [baby daughter Aimee] anyway, so I figured I would stroll in and entertain the Lehigh Valley with Scott Evans.” Prior to joining WLEV “The Lehigh Valley’s Best Variety,” Gears worked on-air at cross-town WAEB “B-104″ and in Philadelphia for WISX “Mix 106.1.” Concurrent with Gears’ move to mornings, St. James will take over WLEV’s afternoon drive vacancy.
NAB Reveals Radio Board Election Results. Those voted to the National Association of Broadcasters’ radio board include: Bill Coleman, owner, Team Radio Marketing Group of Ponca City, Oklahoma. Bruce Goldsen, president and general manager, Jackson Radio Works of Jackson, Michigan. Randy Gravley, president and chief executive officer, Tri-State Communications of Jasper, Georgia. Bill Hendrich, vice president and market manager, Cox Media Group Jacksonville. Ed Henson, president, Henson Media of Louisville. Beth Neuhoff, president and chief executive officer, Neuhoff Communications of Springfield, Illinois. Bob Proffitt, president and chief executive officer, Alpha Media of Portland (Oregon). Their two-year terms will begin in two months (June).
Proffitt to Pacifica Foundation Radio as Executive Director. In just over five weeks (6/11), former KUHF, Houston chief executive officer and general manager John Proffitt will take over as executive director of Pacifica Foundation Radio. Pacifica national board chair and interim executive director Margy Wilkinson states, “We have spent much of the past year stabilizing Pacifica after a turbulent time. Bringing on permanent, experienced leadership is the next step. While Pacifica still faces significant challenges, I am confident that John can see us through them and put our network back on a path of growth.” National board vice chair Lydia Brazon remarks, “John’s significant experience in radio broadcasting speaks for itself, but it is his recognition of Pacifica’s unique place in today’s media landscape that impresses most. I fully trust John Proffitt can and will rise to the challenge.” Proffitt comments, “I deeply admire the Pacifica commitment to independent news and feature reporting that tell the stories other media outlets frequently ignore or soft-pedal. Its leadership in broadcasting and promoting local art and performance is second-to-none, as is its grassroots support from the community. I consider Pacifica to be a national treasure and feel honored to work for its success.” Recording engineer and producer Proffitt spent 25 years at KUHF; more recently, he was a volunteer fundraiser/host (“Thresholds” and “Open Journal”) at Pacifica Houston’s noncommercial KPFT. He will be based in Pacifica’s Berkeley, California headquarters. The five noncommercial stations Pacifica operates are WBAI, New York; KPFK, Los Angeles; KPFA, San Francisco; KPFT, Houston; and WPFW, Washington, DC.
“Q-95″ Set For a “Vinyl Four” Weekend. With the NCAA‘s “Final Four” men’s basketball tournament in its backyard, WFBQ “Q-95″ could not let the mega-event go by without staging a memorable event, so the iHeartMedia Indianapolis classic rocker is presenting a “Vinyl Four Weekend.” The station is “opening up the vault, wiping off the dust, sliding out the sleeve, and putting down the needle.” The extravaganza starts later today (Friday, 4/3) at 3:00 pm when “Q-95″ plays four songs in a row from “some of the best classic rock on vinyl.” Friday’s artists include Eagles, AC/DC, Foreigner, Aerosmith, and Pink Floyd. Saturday’s “Vinyl Four” artists include Steve Miller Band, Rolling Stones, Van Halen, Bruce Springsteen, and Jimi Hendrix. Sunday albums are by the Beatles, Doors, and The Who. The extended weekend concludes Monday with “vinyl” LPs by Elton John, Cream, Fleetwood Mac, Rolling Stones, and Led Zeppelin.
Apple’s Music-Streaming Service May Face Review. According to a Claire Atkinson-written story in The New York Post, Washington regulators have had discussions with several music industry executives to determine if a wider antitrust review of Apple‘s business practices should be instituted. Sources note to the NY Post that both the Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Justice have been involved in those conversations. As Atkinson points out, “Streaming services such as Spotify and Deezer offer a free tier of service as an on-ramp to paid, or premium service. Google’s YouTube also offers a huge selection of free ad-supported music videos.” Apple executive in charge of its upcoming music-streaming service Jimmy Iovine is not a fan of the “freemium” model because it “doesn’t value music.” Several music label executives concur with Iovine. Regulatory news outlet MLEX is reporting that New York State attorney general Eric Schneiderman has sent a subpoena to music labels looking for details of their agreements with Apple. “A music-industry source floated the idea that Apple’s rivals are using regulators to fight their commercial battles and that it will make long-term relationships difficult to sustain,” Atkinson writes. “Spotify, for instance, is still negotiating its new deals with Universal Music and is poised for a major flotation later this year.” Apple is appealing an earlier verdict in which it lost a case over e-book price fixing and colluding with publishers.
PPM Analysis: All-News. Managing editor Mike Kinosian provides another thorough ratings assessment in our sister publication TALKERS, as he updates the status of all-news outlets. Somewhat similar to the way music FMs experience a significant spike in December and “Holiday” sweeps by playing all-Christmas music, news outlets enjoyed remarkable across-the-board gains in January. In fact, none of the approximately 20 stations in PPM markets was in negative “Holiday” 2014 – January 2015 territory. Did the all-news format keep this incredible momentum going? Performances of these facilities in sweep-to-sweep and year-to-year comparisons, as well as in terms of 6+ rank and 6+ market share, are highlighted in an exclusive February 2015 analysis and overview. Read Mike Kinosian’s detailed news format findings for TALKERS here.
PPM Analysis: Urban Adult Contemporary. RadioInfo managing editor and West Coast bureau chief Mike Kinosian presents the second of this three-part, deeper dive into the performances of urban-formatted stations using data from the February 2015 PPM survey from Nielsen Audio. In this report, Kinosian examines the performances of urban AC radio stations. The first report (published on 3/26) looked at the urban contemporary format and you can see that here. This urban AC analysis provides comparisons of station performances arranged by market, market rank and market share, plus charts tracking fluctuations in 6+ performance compared to January 2015 and compared to February 2014. Additionally, Kinosian adds in a chart comparing the performances of urban contemporary and urban AC stations in their markets and as a format. See the entire analysis here.
Steve Goldstein Exits Exec Role at Saga Communications; Launches Podcast Venture. After a career with Saga Communications that spanned almost 30 years, Steven Goldstein leaves his executive vice president position and announces that he is forming a company called Amplifi Media, LLC which will specialize in “the development of digital audio-on-demand (podcast) content.” Goldstein adds, “As connected cars, Bluetooth and smartphones converge, time-shifted audio will grow exponentially. People will listen to content at a time and place of their choosing, just as is occurring rapidly in the television industry with Netflix, DVRs and on-demand video.” A press statement from Amplifi says the company will “concentrate on great storytelling, compelling content and fresh voices on a variety of popular subjects, and will adapt, craft and focus the product for the unique needs of the digital audio business.” Goldstein concludes, “The top of the iTunes podcast chart is dominated by NPR and affiliates. They have done a tremendous job but there is a world of mainstream topics yet to be explored for on-demand-audio. That’s where Amplifi will live.” Goldstein can be reached at 203-221-1400 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
More RadioInfo Career Moves. At the Atlanta operations of Lincoln Financial Media, Scott Lindy exits the building where he was programming hot AC WSTR “Star 94” and sister sports talker WQXI “ESPN 790 the Zone.” The company’s John Dimick is expected to oversee the stations while LFM awaits approval of Entercom’s acquisition of its radio assets…..At Southern Stone Communications-owned country WKRO, Daytona Beach, “Coast Country,” Dallas Reese is back in the program director’s position after most recently serving as morning drive host at Local Voice-owned country outlet WWNQ, Columbia, South Carolina “94.3 The Dude.” Reese is also expected to program Coast Country’s sister classic rocker WHOG…..Taking over for the departing Doug Abernethy at Radio One’s Houston cluster is Gary Spurgeon. He currently serves as GM of the company’s Dallas stations and will retain that responsibility as he adds VP/GM of the Houston ops to his duties…..Air personality Big D is the new APD and morning personality at iHeartMedia’s Las Vegas CHR KPLV “My 93.1.” He comes to the station from the company’s KDWB, Minneapolis where he’s evening host…..Ken Johnson moves from Cumulus Media’s urban AC WNBM, New York “Radio 103.9” to the company’s urban contemporary WUHT, Birmingham, Alabama “Hot 107.7.”…..Erica Cobb is now part of the Todd Baker morning show at CBS RADIO’s hot AC KZZO, Sacramento “NOW 100.5.” She most recently co-hosted mornings on Wilks Broadcasting’s country KWOF, Denver “92.5 The Wolf.”
Ezra and Bomb. Hanging out in the studio after his appearance on “The Adam Bomb Show” is English singer/songwriter George Ezra (left). He appeared with Adam Bomb (right) while visiting New York for his first appearance on “Saturday Night Live” this weekend. On the program, Ezra chatted with Bomb about his nights spent playing free shows in London pubs with Sam Smith and his plans for future albums. Ezra is currently opening for Hozier on his tour and is enjoying the success of his latest single, “Budapest” from his debut album, Wanted on Voyage.
Cumulus Names Cunningham KLOS PD; Madden to KXXR, Minneapolis and Lassman Joins Tom Barnard Show. In a series of moves, Cumulus Media announces the appointment of Keith Cunningham program director for classic rock KLOS, Los Angeles and names him format captain as well. At the same time, KLOS PD Derek Madden is moving to the company’s rock KXXR, Minneapolis “93X” to program that station and continue serving as corporate programmer, rock & alternative. Current KXXR PD John Lassman moves to an on-air post with the “Tom Barnard Morning Show.” Cunningham joins Cumulus from iHeartMedia where he was VP of programming for that company’s Seattle cluster.
Lopez Relocates to Cumulus New York as Market Manager. Fourteen-year general sales manager of CBS Radio New York all-news siblings WCBS-AM and WINS Chad Lopez is appointed vice president and market manager of the cross-town cluster owned by Cumulus Media. “Chad is a highly talented and experienced sales leader behind several legendary brands in New York City radio,” comments Cumulus senior vice president Gary Pizzati. “Relationships he has built and the respect he has developed with the ad community over the last 15 years are unprecedented. This was clearly the next and natural step in his career. We are extremely excited to have Chad on our team and as a member of the Cumulus family.” According to Lopez, “Cumulus presented me with a tremendous opportunity to further my career and run an iconic group of stations in my hometown. I couldn’t be more excited and ready to take on this challenge.” A former U.S. Navy officer, Lopez previously was director of sales for CBS Radio New York, and for five years was Dom Camera and Associates’ senior media buyer. Among the stations comprising Cumulus Media New York are hot AC WPLJ (1.9, #18, 6+, January 2015 Nielsen Audio PPM), talk WABC (1.6, #19), and country WNSH (1.5, #20).
More RadioInfo Career Moves. At Los Angeles alternative KYSR “ALT 98.7,” Andrew Harms is the new APD/music director and afternoon personality, replacing Trey Morgan at the iHeartMedia station. Morgan recently exited for new opportunities…..A new market president for iHeartMedia’s Milwaukee and Madison clusters is named as Colleen Valkoun is officially promoted from her VP of sales post for the same markets. She’s been interim market manager since Jeff Tyler recently left the markets to become market president of the company’s Minneapolis cluster…..At Woof Boom Radio’s WERK, Muncie, Indiana, Paul Poteet a.k.a. Indiana’s Weatherman, joins the classic hits station for afternoon drive. He’ll also appear on the morning show hosted by Brownie…..Spanish-language media corporation Entravision announces it is promoting María Lopez-Knowles from chief marketing officer of its Pulpo Media business unit to the newly created position of CMO of Entravision.
Cumulus Q4 Revenue Flat; Up 1.4% for Whole of 2014. The release of fourth quarter and 2014 financial numbers and president and CEO Lew Dickey’s investor’s conference call took place yesterday. While the fourth quarter started out pretty good for Cumulus Media, Dickey notes that – much like the rest of the industry – revenue began to tail off leading up to Thanksgiving and stayed that way through December. Net revenue (pro forma) for the fourth quarter was up 0.3% and up 1.4% for the entire year of 2014. Dickey also said during the call that the company has ceased its search for an EVP of radio after determining that it does not need to fill that position. Jon Pinch held the title until he left to run the company’s Atlanta station group.
PPM Analysis: Rhythmic Hot AC. RadioInfo managing editor and West Coast bureau chief Mike Kinosian presents the third of three analyses of the ratings performances of CHR-based stations, according to data from the January 2015 Nielsen Audio PPM survey. This report covers the rhythmic hot AC format and, in addition to comparing the 6+ numbers of those stations, it also compares them with mainstream CHR and rhythmic CHR outlets. You can view Mike Kinosian’s entire report here.
Hubbard Radio Officially Names McNeil and McMurray WDRV, Chicago Morning Hosts. The rumor of this pairing of Chicago radio personalities was reported by Windy City media writer Robert Feder last week but now Hubbard Radio makes it official, saying the Dan McNeil and Pete McMurray show will debut on classic rock WDRV “The Drive” in early March, replacing the retiring Steve Downes. Dan McNeil is, of course, a well-known sports talk personality in the market who comes to “The Drive” after a long stint with CBS RADIO’s WSCR which ended last June. Pete McMurray is currently evening host on Tribune’s news/talk WGN. In a press statement, Hubbard Chicago’s VP and market manager John Gallagher comments, “We are all very excited to bring two well-known Chicago personalities together with one iconic rock brand. ‘The Drive’ has maintained a dominant classic rock position in the market for many years. The departure of Steve Downes offered us the opportunity to reevaluate our mission and once again bring something unique to mornings.”
PPM Stats Are Forthcoming. January ratings information for Nielsen Audio’s 48 PPM markets will be released later today (Tuesday, 2/17) and we anticipate that the great majority of the more than three-dozen facilities that registered double-figures (6+) in the “Holiday” 2014 survey will return to single-digits. Most are adult contemporary outlets that transitioned to all-Christmas music between (roughly) Thanksgiving to Christmas Day. Led by iHeartMedia‘s adult contemporary outlet in Portland, the top ten (6+) share leaders from “Holiday” 2014 are: KKCW, Portland 18.1; KSFI, Salt Lake City 17.9; WEJZ, Jacksonville 17.9; WMJX, Boston 16.5; WMAG, Greensboro 16.1; KQQL, Minneapolis 15.3; WWLI, Providence 15.2; WRCH, Hartford 15.2; WBEB, Philadelphia 15.1; and WLIF, Baltimore 14.6. Finishing 11-20 are: KESZ, Phoenix 14.3; WLIT, Chicago 14.2; WJXA, Nashville 14.1; WWSW, Pittsburgh 14.0; WRAL, Raleigh 14.0; WNIC, Detroit 13.7; WYXB, Indianapolis 13.7; WASH, Washington, DC 13.6; WLTW, New York 13.5; and KSNE, Las Vegas 13.2. The next ten (21-30) are: WDUV, Tampa 13.0; WMGF, Orlando 12.8; KODA, Houston 12.5; WVKL, Norfolk 12.5; KOSI, Denver 12.4; WLTW, Middlesex 12.4; KOST, Los Angeles 12.2; WRIT, Milwaukee 12.2; WRVR, Memphis 11.5; and WRRM, Cincinnati 11.2. Remaining stations that hit double-digits (6+) in the “Holiday” 2014 report are: WDOK, Cleveland 11.1; KRWM, Seattle 10.7; KOIT-FM, San Francisco 10.6; WALK-FM, Long Island 10.6; WKQC, Charlotte 10.5; WLW, Cincinnati 10.3; and KQXT, San Antonio 10.0. All of the above are FM music outlets, with the exception of Cincinnati AM talker WLW. The first of four installments of RadioInfo‘s exclusive “Top Ten Takeaways” from the January 2015 results will be posted tomorrow (Wednesday, 2/18).
WWMX, Baltimore Personality Maria Dennis Successfully Battles Leukemia. The story of CBS RADIO jock Maria Dennis beating leukemia was featured recently on WJZ-TV, Baltimore. Dennis is the midday personality on adult contemporary WWMX, Baltimore “Mix 106.5.” It was less than a year ago that Dennis was diagnosed with leukemia. After chemotherapy treatment and a bone marrow transplant, she’s been given a cancer-free diagnosis. See the WJZ-TV story here.
RadioInfo Career Moves. Hit radio pro Lisa Paige is hosting a new syndicated CHR radio show being offered by Townsquare Media and its PopCrush.com brand. In addition to airing live in the evenings (7:00 pm to 12:00 midnight ET) on 38 Townsquare Media stations and via the company’s mobile app, it will be made available to other stations by Compass Media Networks. It’s being described as featuring “the hottest new pop music, as well as…trending entertainment and music information.”…..Denny More is hanging up his headphones after a long radio career, the last seven years of which have been spent co-hosting the morning show at Telemedia’s country WGRX, Fredericksburg, Virginia. His last day will be May 29.
Corporate Promotions at Cherry Creek Radio. At the corporate level, Cherry Creek Radio announces eight promotions that affect its 55 O&O stations in 15 Western U.S. markets. Moving up from regional director of sales to EVP and regional manager are: Kelley Cheatwood, John Craft, and Ron Korb. Group PD Bob Guerra rises to EVP/director of programming. Rita Calvin adds EVP stripes to her controller position. Travis Cronen is now VP/director of operations & IT; Ken Eklund is upped to VP of engineering, and Mary Sims becomes VP/director of accounting. Cherry Creek Radio president and CEO Joe Schwartz comments, “With our new financial structure in place and with the many plans we have to grow the company, I feel it was important to recognize these eight individuals for the outstanding work they have done for the company over their tenure at Cherry Creek Radio. Each of these promotions are for employees who have been with the company for at least eight years or more.”
Futuri Media Awarded Patents for Instant Alert and Listener Driven Radio. Calling it a “milestone for the company,” Futuri Media CEO Daniel Anstandig announces the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has issued a patent to him and the company’s chief technical officer Brian Seeders for its “Instant Alert” and Listener Driven Radio (LDR) technology. In a press release, Futuri Media says the patent describes a broad range of methods related to Listener Driven™ programming, including Instant Alerts, where listeners can receive e-mail, SMS text, and tweets moments before their favorite songs play on the air. This is also one of several U.S. and foreign patents and pending patent applications held by the company that describes and protects its unique interactive mobile and social apps. Anstandig comments, “Futuri has invested a significant amount in R&D related to interactive broadcasting as well as social and mobile technology for local broadcasters. The issuance of this patent is a milestone for our company and our many innovative broadcast partners, who have used this and our other technologies to drive ratings and revenue since the company’s launch in 2009.” Futuri CIO Brian Parsons adds, “Protection of our team’s innovations is critical. Our goal is to shape the future of media with social and mobile technology that makes it possible for consumers to embrace and personalize their favorite media brands. Whether it’s an interactive playlist, alerts for your favorite songs, a feature-rich mobile app, or social monitoring, we’re striving to create easy-to-use platforms that deliver innovative and proprietary high value for our partners.”
WDRV, Chicago’s Steve Downes Calls it a Career. Forty-four year radio pro and current morning host at Hubbard Radio’s classic rock “The Drive” – Steve Downs – announced to fans this morning that he would be retiring from the station and the business after 14 years leading the wake-show. Telling listeners he and his wife had been discussing the matter for about a year, they’ve decided to travel and enjoy their grandchildren in Colorado. Greg Solk, Hubbard Chicago SVP/programming, adds, “Waking up and hearing anybody else on ‘The Drive’ is going to be an adjustment, for sure. Steve has been such a perfect morning man, collaborator and friend to all of us. He has helped ‘The Drive’ achieve wild success and is always going to be a part of our DNA. Steve has generously agreed to allow us to use his pipes in station promos and will continue to host the United Stations-syndicated weekend show ‘The Classics’ that is broadcast out of ‘The Drive.’”
More RadioInfo Career Moves. Latino comic and radio pro Luis Jiminez is returning to the air on Spanish Broadcasting System’s WPAT-FM, Patterson, New Jersey “Amor 93.1 FM” to host the morning drive program. The
new program is called “Sin Censura con Luis Jimenez” (“Luis Jimenez – Uncensored”). The company says the show will also include “a supporting cast of co-hosts, pranksters and outlandish characters.” Jimenez previously hosted “El Vacilon de la Manana” (“The Morning Jive”) on SBS’ WSKQ, New York “Mega 97.9 FM” during the past two decades…..Gabby Diaz moves from her weekend gig at Emmis’ hip hop KPWR, Los Angeles “Power 106” to iHeartMedia’s CHR KYLD, San Francisco “WiLD 94.9” to host the evening program…..Former South Central Communications exec Craig Jacobus – who exited after the company’s assets were acquired by Midwest Communications last year – hangs his Jacobus & Associates shingle. The company is an executive coaching and consulting firm.
Power 105.1’s Angie Martinez Is Goin’ Mobli. New York afternoon personality Angie Martinez adds a new dimension to her media presence bringing content from her WWPR “Power 105” program to fans via social video and photo platform mobli. iHeartMedia and mobli say that this “groundbreaking partnership will bring legendary multimedia personality Angie Martinez’s namesake radio show to fans around the world by exclusively broadcasting her daily interviews and special, behind-the-scenes content, on the mobli app. iHeartMedia New York market president Joe Puglise comments, “iHeartMedia New York is excited to partner with mobli. This gives fans an opportunity for the very first time to peek into the studio ‘live’ to see and hear Angie Martinez celebrity interviews as they are happening.”
Backstage at the GRAMMYs with Westwood One. At yesterday’s Backstage at Westwood One‘s GRAMMYS Red Carpet Radio Row, Zach Sang (left) of “Zach Sang & The Gang,” along with co-host Sasha (right), interview Fall Out Boy’s Pete Wentz (center). The band’s just-released album, American Beauty/American Psycho, debuted at #1, selling more than 191,000 copies the first week. Its first single, “Centuries,” is certified platinum.
World’s Best Radio Programs Advisory Board Adds Critchlow, Geller. Those competing for New York Festivals’ “World’s Best Radio Programs” will have to impress TBI Media founding director Phil Critchlow and Geller Media president Valerie Geller: Both are named to the international radio program awards advisory board and grand jury. Executive director of the NYF radio program awards Rose Anderson states, “These two thought leaders bring creative expertise and deep knowledge of today’s radio industry. Phil Critchlow and Valerie Geller will add tremendous vision and valuable insights as we engage the worldwide radio community and are responsive to what matters to them.” Critchlow comments, “We at TBI have been lucky enough to win a number of New York Festivals awards, which always means a great deal to the team. I am delighted to become part of the NYF advisory board.” Geller remarks that, “It is stunning and so satisfying on every level to have the opportunity and honor to have the chance to hear the amazing work that news, documentary, and program teams throughout the world are producing/creating. It is an honor and a pleasure to serve as a judge for the NYF awards entries.” BBC-trained Critchlow joined Unique Broadcasting in 1994 and launched The Big Idea 12 years later. He formerly was chair of the UK Radio Independents Group (RIG) and is a fellow of the Radio Academy. Geller has coached radio, television, and internet broadcasters in 35 countries. The former WABC, New York program director and KIOI, San Francisco news director received the Conclave‘s Rockwell lifetime achievement award. Deadline for entering this year’s competition is in approximately six weeks (Thursday, 3/19). A New York City awards ceremony will be held (Monday) June 22.
Lewis Joins A&O&B’s Pre-CRS Seminar Agenda. Social media expert Lori Lewis is added to the agenda for Albright & O’Malley & Brenner‘s annual pre-CRS seminar. Jacobs Media’s director of digital and social strategies explains that, “Social media is not about selling people or directing them on what to do. The heart of social media is service-personalized acknowledgment – helping people feel, be seen, and be heard. It is an excellent way to meet objectives [such as] increased awareness, but it is all in your approach. You are either lifting your stations up, or letting the fans down.” Commenting on the seminar, partner Mike O’Malley states, “It is a half-day of thought-provoking and actionable sessions that sets the stage for CRS.” According to Becky Brenner, “Today’s hectic and demanding schedules often prevent valuable face-time with peers. This is an opportunity to share, learn, grow and reenergize.” A&O&B will present first results of its tenth annual online perceptual study “Roadmap 2015.” In addition, Grammy-winning, multi- platinum selling producer/The Curb Group chief executive officer Jim Ed Norman will share insights into the current state of the country music industry and the format’s future. Co-sponsored with Big Machine Label Group‘s Republic Nashville, the three-and-a-half-hour (9:00 am – 12:30 pm) A&O&B pre-CRS seminar takes place in just over two weeks (Wednesday, 2/25) at the Ford Theater at the Country Music Hall of Fame.
iHM Indy Celebrates Bacon! The three iHeartMedia Indianapolis radio stations produced the market’s first-ever Bacon Fest last weekend. Operations manager Rob Cressman tells RadioInfo the event was a sell-out in advance with more than 2,000 bacon aficionados attending. Cressman adds, “From sweet to savory and from pigtails to popcorn, so many conceivable angles were covered at Saturday’s pork-a-palooza. Many of the finest restaurants in Indianapolis were represented by some highly creative chefs who took this opportunity to create a wide array of bacon-inspired deliciousness. It took a strong group effort to make the inaugural Bacon Fest such a hit and I’m tremendously proud of the iHeart Media group on the achievement.” Pictured here is WFBQ midday personality Laura Steele (third from left) posed for a pic with some of the festival’s attendees.
Duane Doobie, Jr.’s Picks of the Week. RadioInfo’s hard-working, co-music editor, Duane Doobie, Jr., backed by a growing team of information-contributing researchers and golden-eared trench broadcasters, including this week Bill Phipps the golden-eared afternoon personality at “Real Country” 96.9 WSIG, Mt. Jackson, Virginia and Bayley Brown, WKLC-FM (Rock 105), St. Albans/Charleston, provides programmers with musical suggestions worthy of the attention of pro-active radio formats. You’ll be turned on to some of the exciting artists and music buzzing out there just over the horizon from the worlds of pop, rock, country and EDM. This week’s selection posted today (1/28) includes such names as: Rihanna, Paul McCartney, Kanye West, Andy Grammer, Olly Murs, Travie McCoy, Gym Class Heroes, Childish Gambino, Ellie Goulding, Ed Sheeran, Maroon 5, Nick Jonas, Miguel, Jonas Brothers, San Fermin, Houndmouth, AWOLNATION, Stone Senate, Savage Garden, JD McPherson, The Mowgli’s, Zac Brown Band, Mickey Guyton, Old Crow Medicine Show, Dani-Elle, Ryan Bingham, Josh Nolan, Bruce Springsteen, John Mellencamp, Kenny Chesney, Grace Potter, Blackberry Smoke, Gorgon City, Jennifer Hudson, Kiesza, Korveil, Portugal, The Man, Cowp, and George Ezra, among others. To check out this valuable information, please click here.
Coleman Insights Study Reaction: Why Wait? In the second part of a series about how listeners engage with music across traditional and emerging platforms, Coleman Insights’ Matt Bailey writes about why music listening and music buying by consumers are different and that radio stations should be careful not to confuse the two. Bailey writes that based on a comparison of two different sets of Billboard data it becomes apparent that, “music buying and music listening patterns are fundamentally different. When you understand why they’re different, you’ll also understand how making new music decisions based on sales data can lead your station astray.” How programmers operating new music stations choose their adds is probably a combination of factors, with sales serving a part of that. But by waiting too long for sales data, a radio station can miss the boat and pass up the opportunity to add a song that becomes a mega hit and cement itself as a reliable place to discover new music. Radio’s slipping status as a place to discover new music among young people has been well documented. An anecdotal example of this is Lorde’s “Royals.” RadioInfo editors recall hearing the song in regular rotation on SiriusXM some three months before most FM radio stations began adding it and before it took off on the sales charts. This certainly helps SiriusXM’s “cool factor” for those who heard it there first. According to RadioInfo co-music editor (and veteran music radio programmer), Duane Doobie, Sr., “The Coleman Insights conclusion is right on the money. There is no way a radio station or music radio personality can claim any kind of ‘ownership’ of the music culture without relying on their very own personal gut, instincts, taste, and first-hand ‘street’ knowledge of the music scene – and then take a leap of faith with nothing more than those assets to rely upon. And if they are smart enough to ‘know what they don’t know’ — then they must be able to identify and trust the leadership of those in the field (or those they have hired) who have proven to have these skills and quickly follow their lead. That’s why RadioInfo encourages the place and role of the ‘golden-eared’ programmer as a vital player in keeping music radio alive. We cannot be a passive medium of followers any longer and expect people who care about music to continue turning to the radio to get their fix of new, hot, happening music and the passion that accompanies appreciating it.”
Cipha Sounds Exits ‘Hot 97’ in New York. After a 17-year career with New York hip hop outlet WQHT “Hot 97,” air personality Cipha Sounds exits. From a story in the New York Daily News, Sounds was apparently surprised when the station chose to hire Nessa Nitty as the afternoon drive jock – taking the slot long held by Angie Martinez who jumped across the street to Clear Channel’s WWPR “Power 105” – and believed he was not considered for the gig even though he’d been filling the slot since Martinez’s departure. The paper is wondering if his decision to go on a podcast and question Emmis management’s decision was the deciding factor in his ouster. It certainly could have been since Emmis, upon announcing Nitty’s hiring, noted that Sounds would remain with the station in another capacity. Now, a week later, that is not the case.
It’s Official: ‘i94’ in Indy Becomes ‘93.9 The Beat.’ Indianapolis hot AC WRWM officially becomes classic hip hop as “93.9 The Beat” – a format it’s been airing since after the holidays. Cumulus Media announces the station officially kicked off the new format this week with “wall-to-wall music, giving hip hop fans 100% classic hip hop with a unique blend of music. Cumulus SVP of programming Mike McVay comments, “We’re excited to have this format in our stable. First in wins and we’re already seeing the spoils of victory.” Programmer Jay Michaels adds, “The response from Indy to our new radio station has been more than positive, both from listeners and advertisers. This format is the rhythmic answer to hot AC – and has already proven to be Indy’s new favorite radio station. I couldn’t be prouder to lead the new ‘93.9 The Beat’ to victory!”
O’Malley Upped to Westwood One Senior VP, Strategic Sales Partnerships. Trading in the title of Cumulus vice president of brand solutions, Paul O’Malley becomes Westwood One’s senior vice president of strategic sales partnerships. According to Westwood One president Steve Shaw, “Bringing Paul over to run our new strategic sales division was a no-brainer. His wealth of experience in new business development, world-class reputation among agencies, and vast knowledge of our assets make him the prefect partner to lead this new team. We are building an impressive and outstanding sales force and Paul is a top-tier player on the team.” O’Malley comments that he is “excited by the opportunity” to “deliver experiential solutions which will encompass national scale and local engagement. The best brands in the U.S. are asking for new, innovative, and measured programs. Westwood One and Cumulus have assets and capabilities that are unparalleled in the industry and that deliver results for advertisers. I look forward to growing our client base and driving revenue across our platforms.” Atlanta-based O’Malley previously (2004 – 2011) was Citadel’s regional president of sales.
Tate to Produce WRAL, Raleigh’s ‘Gene & Julie’ Show. At the Capitol Broadcasting Company’s hot AC WRAL-FM, Raleigh “MIX 101.5,” Casey Tate joins the station to produce the morning drive “Gene & Julie” show, hosted by real-life married couple Gene and Julie Gates. The couple says, “Casey is a dedicated professional with great energy and amazing creativity. We can’t wait to have him join the team!” Most recently, Tate produced the morning show at Lincoln Financial Media-owned WSTR, Atlanta “STAR 94.”
Westwood One to Vacate Montfort Drive Offices in Dallas. With the looming expiration of Westwood One’s lease at the Dallas offices – located at 13725 Montfort Drive – later this year, the company announces it will move those operations to other facilities. Westwood One will build out some new broadcast facilities at the TM Studios operations on Academy Lane in Dallas, and will move programming, production and affiliate sales there. The company reports that back-office functions (traffic and affiliate service/affidavit management) will be relocated to an existing Cumulus facility in nearby Arlington. “Other than some duplicated facility support positions, there will be no other changes to staffing related to the relocations.”
By Howard B. Price
ABC Television Network
Director, Business Continuity
“It’s YOUR fault, you know. YOUR fault a huge, powerful storm system hundreds of miles wide had the temerity to jog just 50 miles farther east, turning a forecast blizzard for many into a whimpering flurry.”
“Oh, and it’s YOUR fault, too – you emergency managers and business continuity pros – YOUR fault government and businesses took decisions that inconvenienced many and cost untold dollars in lost revenue or extra expense.”
Yeah, well – speaking as both a broadcaster and a certified emergency planning professional – to that I say simply and with strong resolve: “Good for us.”