Tag: "New York"
Nielsen Audio-Voltair Debate Rages On. The industry is still aflutter with chatter – and quite a few blogs – over Tuesday’s Nielsen Audio webinar in which the ratings giant told clients its tests of Telos Alliance’s Voltair audio processor showed no conclusive evidence that the unit positively impacted the PPM unit’s ability to pick up the embedded codes in any way that could affect ratings. Although Nielsen did admit that in some circumstances, Voltair did give the watermark a boost that would allow the PPM to pick up more codes. Broadcasting consultant Randy Kabrich responded to that conclusion in a recent blog post in which he explained that – due to the U.S. system of Quarter Hour measurement – picking up some extra codes via Voltair which might have gone undetected without it, still would not increase ratings because the Media Rating Council testing done on PPM concluded the measurement system “hears” enough of the codes to get an accurate record of listening. The Voltair unit has only been in the field for less than a year and it appears there isn’t enough data, available publicly anyway, to produce sound conclusions about whether – or exactly how – the unit affects the audio and the PPM’s reception of it across all radio formats. Even Telos Alliance doesn’t seem to have all the answers about its product as Kabrich points out in today’s blog post that focuses on contrary opinions about whether certain music “encodes well” for PPM. Read it here.
WYMS Lifts Lee to PD. Six-year WYMS, Milwaukee assistant program director Jordan Lee is elevated to program director of the Milwaukee Public Schools-owned/Radio Milwaukee-managed noncommercial triple A outlet. He succeeds Sean Demery, who relocates to Utah, but will work with the station as a consultant. Radio Milwaukee executive director Mary Louise Mussoline comments, “Sean worked very hard for us and set the stage for our continued growth. Jordan has consistently done exceptional work; led the program team in implementing changes; and encouraged excellence from the team. He has been developing strong industry contacts and worked with top national bands for our ‘Studio Milwaukee’ on-air shows. Jordan is a rising star.” Lee remarks, “We have done great work over the last eight years and we are making a real difference in the community. I think I can help bring even more listeners to the station, which will help us make an even greater impact in Milwaukee.” The station’s morning drive talent since December 2008, Lee will no longer host a daily show. After consecutive .8 showings in April and May (Nielsen Audio PPM, 6+), WYMS registers a 1.1 in June (#19); it is the first time it reaches at least a one-share (6+) since last July’s 1.0.
More RadioInfo Career Moves. There’s a new voice on iHeartMedia’s hip hop WJMN, Boston “Jam’n 94.5” as Frankie V, a.k.a. Frank Vinci, joins current morning show co-host Ashlee Feldman for AM drive duties. Frankie V takes over for Ramiro “The Freakin’ Puerto Rican” Torres who exits…..Taryn Daly is promoted at Entercom rocker KISW, Seattle. She moves from her weekend gig to full-time night jock and social media director. Daly takes over for Jolene, who recently exited her evening show position after an 11-year stint to pursue opportunities outside the radio business…..At Staradio’s country WXNU, Kankakee, Illinois, midday personality Denny Case is promoted to program director after current PD and PM drive personality Maggi Mayfield announces she’ll leave the station on August 14 to pursue her stand-up career full time…..Night jock Kid Jay adds music director duties to his role with iHeartMedia’s rhythmic CHR KGGI, Riverside, California.
Cumulus-Commissioned Study Indicates Radio Advertising Helped Drive Awareness of Amazon Prime Day. The Ipsos study commissioned by Cumulus Media/Westwood One analyzing how advertising drove awareness of the July 15 Amazon Prime Day was done to “understand how effective advertising and radio is to drive online purchases.” The study concluded that: 81% of Americans aware of Amazon Prime said they were exposed to some form of advertising for the event; one out of five Americans reported making a purchase during Amazon Prime Day because of advertising; three out of five Amazon Prime subscribers (18-49) exposed to advertising said they purchased something during Amazon Prime Day; and radio advertising was the most effective at converting awareness into Prime Day purchases when compared to TV and online. Of those exposed to radio ads, 52% made a purchase versus TV (39%) and online (48%). Cumulus and Westwood One chief marketing officer Pierre Bouvard comments, “Advertising put Amazon Prime Day on the map, and radio was the most effective at converting awareness into purchases. The greatest Amazon Prime Day purchases occurred among Millennials, households with children, and those with a full-time job — precisely the profile of the American radio listener.”
KMJO, Fargo Airing ‘DUKE FM’ Country Format. The classic country format from Envision Networks and Kroeger Media Inc is now heard on Midwest Communications’ KMJO-FM, Fargo as the station re-brands as “104.7 DUKE FM.” Midwest Communications vice president of programming Jeff McCarthy states, “Stars such as George Strait, Reba McEntire, Garth Brooks and Alan Jackson were not getting airplay and furthermore, the legends like Johnny Cash, Waylon Jennings and Willie Nelson were without a home on the radio, until now. ‘DUKE FM at 104.7’ now delivers the massive hits from the legendary artists.”
Nick Michaels’ ‘Deep End’ Programs to Air on KRDG, Redding. New affiliate KRDG, Redding, California adds two show from Nick Michaels’ American Voice Corporation. The weekly “The Deep End With Nick Michaels” and the daily short-form feature “Stories From The Deep End” will begin airing on the Mapleton-owned classic hits station on August 9.
iHeartRadio ICONS Series Hosts Jimmy Page. Rock giant and Led Zeppelin founder Jimmy Page (left) sits down with WAXQ, New York and iHeartMedia personality Jim Kerr (right) at the iHeartRadio Theater in New York City for a recent edition of the iHeartRadio ICONS. In celebration of the release of digitally re-mastered editions of Led Zeppelin albums Presence, In Through the Out Door and Coda, Page took part in a Q&A with Kerr and played the first public airing of an alternate take on “When the Levee Breaks” titled, “If it Keeps on Raining,” (which is included on the Coda record). Photo: The Browyoungs for iHeartRadio.
Cool Job Opportunity. Arlington Independent Media seeks a Radio Coordinator for its new low-power FM. The Radio Coordinator (RC) is responsible for coordinating the activities of WERA, Arlington. The RC will be responsible for the day-to-day operation of the station, will assist the AIM Board of Directors, the WERA/LPFM Committee, and the AIM Executive Director in the long-term and strategic planning for the future health and growth of the station, and will work with the Executive Director and the LPFM/WERA, Facilities, Marketing, and Fundraising Committees to promote the station, solicit programs, raise funds, and seek sponsorships and underwriting. The RC reports to the AIM Operations Manager. For job requirements and to apply, click here.
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: Kid Kelly, vice president of music programming at SiriusXM; Todd Cavanah, golden-eared PD at CBS owned WJMK “K-Hits” and WBBM-FM in Chicago; John Marks, director of country programming for SiriusXM; on-air personality Bayley Brown from WKLC-FM, St. Albans, West Virginia “Rock 105”; Matt James, golden-eared, on-air personality at WCLT, Newark, Ohio “T-100”; Golden-eared music director Karoline Kramer Gould (also known to her followers as Momma K) at WJCU, Cleveland; Bill Phipps the golden-eared afternoon personality at WSIG, Mt. Jackson, Virginia “Real Country 96.9”; Jayn, golden-eared afternoon talent/music director/asst. program director at “Alice 93.7” in San Francisco; 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 (7/15) includes such names as: Demi Lovato, Leon Bridges, Pharrell Williams, Max, Hoodie Allen, The Heydaze, Cro, Charlie Puth, Meghan Trainor, Coheed & Cambria, Joy Williams, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Buddy Guy, Indigo Girls, Lamb of God, Family of the Year, Beck, Uncle Ezra Ray, Bobby Wills, Carissa Leigh, Clare Dunn, Corey Smith, Alan Jackson, Kygo, Conrad Sewell, Barny Rubble, Nathan Sykes, Jump Smokers!, Coleman Hell, Marcio Lama, Jefferson Airplane, Mr. Belt & Wezol, Freejak, among others. To check out this valuable information, please click here.
Major Market Swapping Among Entercom, LFM, Bonneville. Official settlement has been reached between Entercom Communications and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) regarding Entercom’s acquisition of Lincoln Financial Media. The proposed transaction involving LFM properties in three markets was announced last December. Another player entered the mix, and as part of the DOJ resolution, Entercom gains entry into the second-largest market by exchanging four Denver stations with Bonneville. Somewhat resembling an MLB mega-swap conducted prior to baseball’s July 31 trading deadline, Entercom is cutting ties with adult contemporary KOSI “Continuous Lite Rock,” KYGO “#1 For New Country,” KKFN “Sports Radio – The Fan,” and sports KEPN “The Zone” in exchange for Bonneville Los Angeles classic rocker KSWD “The Sound” and $5 million in additional consideration. After the dust settles, Entercom will have facilities in four (new for them) top 20 markets – Los Angeles, Atlanta, Miami, and San Diego. Leading their respective stations there – and all having the Entercom title of vice president and general manager are: Peter Burton (Los Angeles); Mike Fowler (Atlanta); Doug Abernethy (Miami); and Bob Bollinger (San Diego). Amy Griesheimer remains in place as vice president and general manager of Entercom Denver; she has been with the company since 2002. Entercom president and chief executive officer David Field comments, “We are delighted to be moving forward on our long-delayed acquisition of Lincoln Financial Media and adding their terrific brands, markets, and people to our organization. We are also very excited to be acquiring ‘The Sound,’ the fastest growing radio station in Los Angeles, through our station exchange with Bonneville. Adding Los Angeles, Miami, Atlanta, and San Diego to our footprint will meaningfully enhance our ability to serve our listeners, customers, employees, and shareholders. This is a great day for Entercom that will enhance our competitive position and bolster our growth potential well into the future.” According to Entercom chief operating officer Weezie Kramer, “Lincoln Financial Media, Bonneville, and their teams have built world-class brands. We are excited about the opportunities to continue to grow these stations and to provide our listeners and customers with the best compelling local content and dynamic, integrated marketing solutions. I am excited to welcome Doug, Bob, Mike, and Peter to Entercom. They are great leaders and managers with a proven track record of success. As we enter these vibrant markets, we are thrilled to have such talented and experienced media veterans at the helm. Amy has been a tremendous leader for Entercom Denver. We know her experience, leadership, and vision will continue to drive ratings, revenue, and audience engagement for our stations [there].” Meanwhile, Bonneville president Darrell Brown remarks, “Denver is a vibrant, growing area where we see great opportunity. The stations we are acquiring are legacy brands and provide a powerful cluster in this market. They align well with our existing portfolio, allowing us to expand our regional footprint. Bonneville’s core mission is building and lifting the communities where we own broadcast properties. We have a commitment to provide quality sports, news, and entertainment products and we are thrilled to serve the Denver market.” After spending seven years as director of sales for Lincoln Financial San Diego, New York native Burton joined Bonneville seven years ago. Entercom Los Angeles will consist of KSWD “The Sound,” which in 12 of the last 13 Nielsen Audio PPM ratings periods, has been in the 3.0 – 3.9 range. In the most recent sweep (June 2015), it ranks sixth (3.7, 6+); “The Sound” registered a 3.9 in March, April, and May. Fowler most recently was director of sales for ESPN Chicago. The LFM cluster that Entercom is acquiring in Atlanta is comprised of hot AC WSTR “Star 94,” which has back-to-back increases (3.0 – 3.2 – 3.8, April-May-June, 6+) to finish #11, and WQXI “ESPN 790 The Zone” (.2, 6+). Abernethy joined Entercom three months ago, following ten years as a Radio One regional vice president. Among the three Miami stations Entercom is picking up from LFM is adult contemporary WLYF “Lite-FM,” which – in May – finally unseated Cox Media Group urban AC WHQT at #1. With consecutive up-trends (6.8 – 7.1 – 7.3, April-May-June, 6+), “Lite” remains at #1. The other two Miami stations Entercom is acquiring are classic hits-oldies WMXJ “Magic 102.7″ (4.4, #7, 6+, June 2015) and sports WAXY “The Ticket” (1.9, #20). It was just last week that Bolinger exited CBS Radio San Diego as senior vice president and market manager. As is the case in Miami involving adult contemporary WLYF, Entercom is getting a #1 station (6+) in San Diego with adult contemporary KIFM “Easy 98.1″ (5.5, #1, 6+, June 2015). In addition to “Easy,” the San Diego cluster-mates Bolinger will oversee are KSON “New Country” (4.5, #6) and alternative KBZT “It’s About the Music” (2.6, #16). June 2015 (6+) ratings performances for the properties leaving Entercom and joining Bonneville are 5.3, #4 (fourth successive up trend) for KYGO; 4.7, #6 for KOSI; and 2.0, #19 for KKFN; KEPN does not appear in the June sweep. Stations remaining under the Entercom Denver banner are June 2015 pacesetter classic rock KQMT “The Mountain” (6.6, #1, 6+); hot AC KALC “Alice” (4.0, #9); and adult standards KEZW “Studio 1430 – Timeless Music” (.5, #28). They will be joined by Lincoln Financial Media additions rhythmic CHR KQKS “KS-107.5″ (3.5, #12, 6+, June 2015); KYGO-HD2 “Comedy 103.1″ (#18, trending 1.7 – 1.8, 1.9 – 3.0, 6+); and KRWZ “Cruisin’ Oldies – AM 950″ (1.5, #23). Purchase price for Entercom’s Lincoln Financial Media acquisition is $105 million. Approximately three-quarters of it – $77.5 million – is in cash and the remaining $27.5 million in “Series A” perpetual convertible preferred stock held by Lincoln Financial Group. Time Brokerage Agreements will enable Bonneville and Entercom to operate the swapped properties immediately upon closing of the Lincoln Financial Media acquisition. It is anticipated that closing of the Lincoln Financial Media acquisition and beginning of the Bonneville-Entercom TBAs will occur within several business days. Entercom expects the Bonneville transaction will be finalized by fourth quarter.
Connoisseur Media Bought by Management and Petrus Holding Company. Westport, Connecticut-based Connoisseur Media has been bought in a joint effort by the company’s management and Petrus Holding Company, LP, a Perot Company. In a statement issued today, Petrus says existing management team will continue to operate the stations, with Petrus as their financial partner. Connoisseur Media operates 42 radio stations and digital assets in 12 markets across the U.S. Connoisseur CEO Jeffrey Warshaw states, “We are very excited to partner with The Perot Companies to continue our focused and disciplined growth strategy. It is important for us to have a partner who shares our values and supports our long-term growth strategy.” Perot Companies chairman Ross Perot, Jr. says, “The Perot Companies and Connoisseur share common values, an entrepreneurial culture and a long-term approach to operating and building world-class companies. Our investment will allow Connoisseur to continue investing in its people while ensuring it can remain prudently financed, locally focused and innovative.”
Cumulus Announces Major PD Moves; Jeffries to WRQX, Washington and Gillette to WPLJ, New York. Though these moves take programmers Jan Jeffries and Rick Gillette to new markets, Jeffries retains his corporate SVP of programming role and Gillette continues his corporate program director/contemporary position for Cumulus Media. But Jeffries leaves behind his classic hits WLS-FM, Chicago programming position to oversee programming at CHR WRQX, Washington. Rick Gillette heads up I-95 to New York to become program director for hot AC WPLJ. Current WPLJ programmer John Foxx remains with the station as APD. Cumulus begins a search for a new programmer for WLS-FM. Jan Jeffries comments, “The past four years programming WLS-FM have been most rewarding, solidifying its heritage with a legendary air staff and signature sound. Now it is an honor to join WRQX and lead the talented programming team in Washington. My deepest appreciation to John Dickey and Mike McVay.” Gillette says, “DC is a special place. It’s not often you get to rebuild a brand from the ground up, but that’s exactly what we’ve done in the past year. The cast and crew there are nonpareil, and the ratings growth shows the brand is on the move. ‘95.5 PLJ’ is also a special place. John Foxx and I have been working very closely together on this project the past nine months. He’s one of the finest young programmers in the country and we’re blessed to have him on this amazing team. Now, with Chad Lopez firmly ensconced in the corner office, I believe this brand is ready to return to dominance in Gotham.”
Cox Media Group Makes ‘Major Senior Leadership Changes.’ These executive moves affect the National Ad Platforms, radio and digital businesses of Cox Media Group. They include: Kim Guthrie being named EVP of National Ad Platforms and president of CoxReps, the country’s largest television advertising rep firm based in New York City; Bill Hendrich takes over for Guthrie as EVP of radio and CMG research, based in Atlanta; and Marian Pittman becomes the company’s EVP of digital strategy and will oversee digital’s content and sales from her base in Atlanta. Guthrie’s assumption of the CoxReps presidency comes as Jim Monahan retires from the company after 35 years. The company says new radio EVP Bill Hendrich joined CMG Radio in 1996 in Orlando and has led countless award-winning teams that have produced outstanding creative content for CMG’s radio audiences, quantifiable sales results for customers, and internal and external customer service satisfaction for CMG’s employees and clients. The company’s Orlando VP/GM Susan Larkin is promoted to regional VP of Jacksonville and Orlando Radio. Finally, Pittman makes her move after serving with the company as VP of news and marketing for television.
More RadioInfo Career Moves. There’s a new morning host in place at Entercom’s rhythmic oldies KHTP, Seattle “Hot 103.7.” Deanna Cruz moves across the country from her most recent gig as morning personality at iHeartMedia’s hip hop WWKX, Providence “Hot 106.” Cruz replaces the duo Candy & Potter which exited in March of this year after a 14-month run in AM drive…..Air personality Wells Adams is the new afternoon host at iHeartMedia’s classic rock WNRQ, Nashville. He’ll also host mornings on the company’s alternative simulcast WNRQ-HD2 and W252CM “Alt 98.3.”He leaves crosstown triple a WRLT “Lightning 100.”
Nielsen to Talk Voltair with Clients. Ratings giant Nielsen Audio has had a Voltair audio processor unit for about six months now and clients – not to mention the industry as a whole – are probably very excited the company will address the Telos/Alliance-made unit in a webinar for clients on July 21. In a letter to clients, Nielsen says the webinar will focus on “PPM enhancements” and an update on the Voltair testing. Broadcasters working in the field say the Voltair processor allows stations to see the strength of their PPM encoding as it leaves the audio chain and make adjustments in the signal in hopes of getting as much listening credit as the signal is due. Canada’s ratings consortium Numeris has banned the use of Voltair – to ensure a level playing field – while it, too, tests the unit.
WOAD, Jackson Host Percy Davis Honored at 37th Annual Gospel Music Awards. Jackson, Mississippi programmer and radio host Percy Davis was honored at this past Sunday’s 37th Annual Gospel Music Awards where he received the 2015 Gospel Radio Announcer of the Year award. Davis hosts WOAD, Jackson’s morning show and serves as program director. Alpha Media EVP of programming Scott Mahalick says, “We are truly blessed to have a programmer with Percy’s passion, love and experience with Alpha Media.”
Vance Joy Entertains ‘94.7 Fresh FM’ Washington Listeners. Australian singing sensation Vance Joy is pictured here performing for an exclusive group of WIAD, Washington “94.7 Fresh FM” listeners at CBS RADIO Washington’s DC Lottery Live stage. Station personalities Tommy, Jen and Kelly of “The Tommy Show” hosted the event.
SiriusXM Settles in Pre-1972 Recordings Matter. Five of the largest record companies and Sirius XM Holdings Inc. have agreed to a settlement for the latter’s use of pre-1972 recordings on its satellite radio service. According to the Recording Industry Association of America, SiriusXM will pay $210 million to plaintiffs ABKCO Music & Records, Capitol Records, Sony Music Entertainment, UMG Recordings, and Warner Music Group. The settlement provides a nationwide resolution for SiriusXM’s previous use of the plaintiffs’ pre-1972 recordings and through the end of 2017. After that, SiriusXM must negotiate with individual record companies. RIAA chairman and CEO Cary Sherman comments, “This is a great step forward for all music creators. Music has tremendous value, whether it was made in 1970 or 2015. We hope others take note of this important agreement and follow SiriusXM’s example.” This resolution does not include the class action suit led by Flo & Eddie Inc. That case is currently under appeal in California’s 2nd Circuit Court.
Cumulus Taps Troy Hanson for WKQX, Chicago PD Gig. He’s been serving as program director for the company’s rock WNNX, Atlanta and as corporate program director for rock formats. Now, Troy Hanson will take over the PD post at Cumulus Media’s alternative WKQX, Chicago. Current programmer PJ is seeking opportunities outside the radio biz. Cumulus SVP content and programming Mike McVay says, “Troy continues to do an excellent job as corporate PD/rock for Cumulus. His experience, combined with the need for WKQX to continue to excel, makes him the perfect candidate for this position.”
Bryan LaRoche New PM Drive Personality at WKIS-FM, Miami. Air personality Bryan LaRoche has most recently been with Alpha Media at its Portland cluster heard on both country KUPL and CHR KBFF. Now he transitions to CBS RADIO’s South Florida country outlet WKIS-FM, Miami “99.9 Kiss Country” for the afternoon drive shift. He says, “This can’t be real life. Country radio? In South Florida? For ‘99.9 Kiss Country’? It doesn’t get any better than that! I’m honored and thankful to have the opportunity to work with CBS RADIO and the team at WKIS. I truly feel like this is exactly where I belong and can’t wait to call one of my favorite cities home.” CBS RADIO Miami VP of programming Rob Morris adds, “Bryan’s talent both on air and combined with his digital programming skills makes him a great addition to the WKIS-FM team.”
More RadioInfo Career Moves. Executive changes at Univision Communications as the company announces that Los Angeles-based Jose Valle leaves his role overseeing the radio division and will become president of political & advocacy sales. Responsibility for the radio division will shift to Jaime Jiminez, who serves as executive vice president of Univision local media…..Moving from the on-air end of the business to the label side of the music industry is former WRDW, Philadelphia personality and programmer Brandon “Buster” Satterfield. He joins Atlantic Records in New York in a regional promotions capacity. Satterfield programmed CBS RADIO’s Philly rhythmic CHR outlet before it transitioned to the company’s mainstream CHR AMP format as WZMP.
Envision Networks Offers Free Radio Sales School. Through a deal with influence FM, Envision Networks announces it is able to share Radio Sales School with stations. Via a partnership with radio sales trainer Chris Rolando, influence FM is able to offer the 15-day course to radio stations absolutely free. Envision says it’s a great tool for training new sales hires and providing a refresher for more experienced radio sales reps. Rolando brings more than 40 years of broadcasting industry experience to the course. He comments, “No matter where I teach, I find that managers and radio station owners spend a significant amount of their time trying to find and train sales reps instead of managing the actual sales.” The online course features educational videos, quizzes and interactive discussions. In addition to this course, influence FM is offering access to free scripts, pre-produced spots and more to help stations recruit the best candidates possible. influence FM produces radio management software available on a cash or barter basis. This product suite gives users complete control over every step of the sales process including asset management, spot creation and commercial production.
Bob & Tom at Brad Garrett’s Comedy Club in Las Vegas. Members of the Westwood One-syndicated Bob & Tom show pose for a shot with actor and comic Brad Garrett at his Brad Garrett’s Comedy Club at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. The show transported 20 lucky winners and their guests to Vegas for the weekend where they got to do a meet & greet with Garrett. Pictured (clockwise from top) are: Garrett, Tom Griswold, Chick McGee, Kristi Lee, and Bob Kevoian.
Bob & Sheri to Host ‘Ugliest Dog’ Contest. WLNK, Charlotte-based and nationally syndicated morning show hosts Bob Lacey and Sheri Lynch are returning to Sonoma Media Group-owned affiliate KMHX, Santa Rosa, California “Mix 104.9” today to host the “World’s Ugliest Dog Contest” at the Sonoma Marin Fair. The internationally observed event celebrates homely hounds and the humans who love them. The World’s Ugliest Dog winner will receive a grand prize of $1,500 and the Spirit Award Recipient will receive a special award. Organizers say the contest has been a testament that all dogs do not have to meet AKC pedigree standards to be man’s (or woman’s) best friend. Sheri Lynch comments, “We are so excited to be asked back to the festival to host the contest again! We love this event!”
‘NASH FM 94.7’ Brings The Cadillac Three to NYC. New York country outlet WNSH “NASH FM 94.7” presented another of its “Up Close and Country” performances in the Big Apple last night (6/25) at Hill Country Barbecue Market in the heart of the city. The country/rock group The Cadillac Three performed for a lucky group of listeners, singing their hit singles “The South” and “White Lightning,” as well as covers of a number of top country songs. Prior to the show, the boys stopped by the “NASH FM 94.7” studios to chat with station personality Jesse Addy (left).
Duane Doobie Jr.’s Picks of the Week. RadioInfo’s hard-working co-music editor, Duane Doobie Jr., backed by a growing team of information-contributing researchers and golden-eared, trench broadcasters, including this week: on-air personalities Bayley Brown from WKLC-FM, St. Albans, West Virginia “Rock 105”; Matt James, golden-eared, on air personality at “T-100” WCLT in Newark, OH; Bill Phipps the golden-eared afternoon personality at WSIG, Mt. Jackson, Virginia “Real Country 96.9;” Todd Cavanah, golden-eared PD at CBS owned WJMK “K-Hits” & WBBM-FM in Chicago; Jayn, golden-eared afternoon talent/music director/asst. program director at Alice 93.7, San Francisco; plus internet sensation The Iceman, provides programmers with musical suggestions worthy of the attention of pro-active radio formats. You’ll be turned on to some of the exciting artists and music buzzing out there just over the horizon from the worlds of pop, rock, country and EDM. This week’s selection posted today (6/24) includes such names as: Selena Gomez, A$AP Rocky, Afrojack, Mike Taylor, Charlie Puth, Meghan Trainor, Olivia Kay, Alx Kawakami, The Weeknd, Kaya Stewart, Icona Pop, Madison Rising, Five Finger Death Punch, Beck, Secret Lie, Destroyer, Langhorne Slim & The Law, Nate Ruess, Beck, Billy Currington, A Thousand Horses, Jake Owen, Keith Urban, Bily Lord, Carly Jo Jackson, Baio, Gemini Club, Silento, Armin Van Buuren, Mr. Probz, Kygo, among others. To check out this valuable information, please click here.
Talkers New York 2015 ‘Fireside Chat’ Video featuring Dialogue Between Michael Harrison and John Dickey Posted Today. Billed as a “Fireside Chat” in one of the keynote sessions of the just-concluded Talkers New York 2015 convention, TALKERS magazine and RadioInfo publisher Michael Harrison conducts a one-on-one conversation with Cumulus Media executive vice president of content & programming, John Dickey. In a series of what Dickey describes as “really tough questions,” Harrison asks him about a wide variety of subjects including how he handles the stress of being significantly responsible for the operation of one of the largest and most complex radio broadcasting companies in the history of the medium; whether or not the platform of radio can ever be accurately measured in terms of ratings; what position talk radio occupies within the overall Cumulus plan going forward; whether or not there is room for qualitative selling and non-traditional revenue generation at large, corporately owned stations; and if there is a future for the personality oriented disc jockey in music radio, among other topics. Dickey responds with thoughtful and candid answers before a fully engaged, packed house of professionals from all segments of the industry in a room so quiet, one could hear a proverbial pin drop. On the subject of stress, Dickey says it is a matter of “balance…balance in life” putting work and family into their proper perspectives. He ties that into programming — repeatedly stating that successful radio formats must maintain an effective balance of elements as they evolve forward with their “natural life cycles.” Dickey discusses the importance of “branding” in today’s commerce, underscoring his company’s commitment to and “heavy investment” in the talk format stating, “We are the ‘custodians’ of some of radio’s greatest brands,” making it clear that Cumulus takes that responsibility very seriously in the talk arena. He makes the point, “We must, however, arrive at an understanding of what constitutes the talk format today” pointing out that talk radio needs to “broaden the conversation” because “people talk about a lot of things.” On the subject of ratings (immediately following a powerful panel discussion about the state of audience measurement moderated by Sean Hannity during which Nielsen’s feet were held to the fire), Dickey is measured and fair in his criticism of Nielsen stating, “The ratings are accurate… but only to a point.” He says, “Nielsen needs to be [more forthcoming] about the ‘margin of error’ [in their metrics] – they owe us more than they are giving us.” Looking back at the conversation, Michael Harrison says, “John Dickey is one of the brightest young men I have ever met in this business and I have no doubt in my mind about his love for and commitment to radio. Neither he nor his brother Lew have easy jobs…and, like all human beings, they are far from perfect, not to mention the entire radio industry is challenged by the circumstances of the times… so operating the second largest ownership group in the history of the medium in the second decade of the 21st century is an extremely daunting task. Unlike so many of today’s powerful executives in both business and government, they admit their mistakes and are always trying to learn and improve.” To view the “Fireside Chat” in its entirety including an introduction by rising talk star Ethan Bearman, please click here.
Nielsen Unveils its Total Audience Report; Radio Leads Weekly Reach of Adults. Senior vice president of the audience insights division at Nielsen, Glenn Enoch, says that in preparing the first-ever Total Audience Report, the company is “using the best available data and have done all we can to make this an ‘apples-to-apples’ comparison, but it is important to remember that these platforms are measured by different methods using different samples and different crediting rules.” Enoch is referring to the challenge of finding one way to express the consumption of three different media platforms – TV, radio and digital. That said, radio practitioners are happy with the results indicating that on a weekly basis, radio reaches 93% of the adult population compared to television’s 87% reach. Digital is broken up into three segments – PC, smartphone, and tablet – and those reach 54%, 70% and 35% of American adults, respectively. However, when one looks at the weekly hours and minutes spent with each medium, television comes out on top across all adult demographics and radio comes in second. The data shows that, for persons 35-49, the average hours/minutes during the week spent with television was 33:05, for radio 13:39, for PCs 6:58, for smartphones 8:52, and for tablets 4:50. In tallying the number of days per week of usage for each medium for persons 18-49, smartphones come out on top with 5.9. Radio is close behind with 5. Television is third with 4.7, followed by tablets at 4.6 and PCs with 3.6. In a memo to his sales stall, Cumulus Media chief marketing officer Pierre Bouvard writes, “While radio is known as a frequency medium, we have always had significant reach. Radio’s reach has remained consistent while television has eroded. Radio now finds itself as America’s number one mass reach medium.”
Dillon to Program ‘96.7 Kiss FM’ in Austin. The change means Zach Dillon moves from iHeartMedia’s CHR KTBT, Tulsa “The Beat” to the company’s Austin cluster where he’ll program CHR KHFI “96.7 Kiss FM,” effective July 12. Dillon says, “I cannot begin to express the happiness I have in knowing I’m returning to the great state of Texas! This position, with these call letters attached to it, doesn’t come around often. With this move to Austin, I’m excited to re-sign with iHeartMedia, a company that’s treated me so well over the years.”
More RadioInfo Career Moves. Weekend and fill-in personality Lisa Kosty is named the permanent midday jock at Hubbard Broadcasting’s adult contemporary WSHE, Chicago. Kosty assumes the role previously held by Megan Reed, who resigned her position to focus on her battle with cancer…..Non-com triple A WYMS, Milwaukee “88Nine Radio Milwaukee” announces radio pro Ken Sumka is the new afternoon drive personality. The longtime WXRT, Chicago jock has been living in Milwaukee and serving as a weekend and fill-in host. He has also worked as an airborne reporter at WMAQ and WBBM-AM in Chicago from 1998-2009.
Gunhill Road Meets Big Jay Sorensen. The legendary pop/rock band Gunhill Road had a heck of a great time mingling with radio broadcasters from both music and talk formats at the recent Talkers New York 2015 mega-conference. The trio, that had two FM rock radio album favorites and the hit single “Back When My Hair Was Short” in the early 1970s, recently released an unexpected album with 19 new tracks titled Every 40 Years (Gunhill Road Records) that has garnered some airplay on AC and triple-A formats as well as a ton of interviews on talk radio. The group attended the conference to appear with various radio folk in a forthcoming documentary (“Back When My Hair Was Long”) about their fascinating two-part journey from the 1970s to the modern digital era set for theatrical release in 2016 and to promote their latest single, “I’ve Got To Learn To Cry (featuring American Idol’s Julia DeMato). The group is pictured here with pop radio legend and rock ‘n’ roll historian “Big” Jay Sorensen of WCBS-FM, New York. Shown (l-r): Steve Goldrich, “Big” Jay Sorensen, Glenn Leopold and Paul Reisch.
James Taylor Featured at iHeartRadio Theater in NYC. Singing and songwriting legend James Taylor was the featured artist in latest iHeartRadio ICONS series. This live event at the iHeartRadio Theater featured a performance by Taylor and a Q&A with iHeartMedia and WAXQ, New York personality Jim Kerr. The two discussed and listened to tracks from his new album, Before This World, which was released earlier this week. The audio was broadcast across all iHeartMedia classic rock stations at 8:00 pm local time on June 23. Photo: Katherine Tyler for iHeartRadio.
Dierks Bentley Co-Hosts ‘NASH Nights Live.’ With “NASH Nights Live” personality Shawn Parr away from the studio at a charity event this week, special guests are joining co-host Elaina Smith (left) on the program. Pictured here is Dierks Bentley (right) in the studio. Other special guest this week include: Kip Moore, Maddie & Tae, Canaan Smith, Tim McGraw, and Hunter Hayes.
“Back to the Future” Moments for PodcastOne’s Agovino. As part of his “weird-new” role as PodcastOne executive vice chair, Mike Agovino is discovering more “differences” in the podcast marketplace than “commonalities” to challenges encountered the last ten years by digital music and broadcast streaming entities. “It is much less about the science of advertising and it is much more about the art of advertising,” he remarks to Mark Ramsey Media president Mark Ramsey in a 30-minute, one-on-one interview during this past week’s hivio 2015 conference. Having spent ten years inside Triton Digital as its chief operating officer, Agovino recounts that the company had “an ad platform, a content delivery network, and it built apps for people. With hundreds of brand names across the canvass, there is a very scientific approach to connecting the right ad to the right person at the right time to create some kind of results,” he declares. “It is so much ‘science’ that, if you live in it long enough, you lose your feel for the ‘art.'” Approximately 27 years ago, self-described Howard Stern “freak” Agovino was living in New York and faithfully listened to the fabled morning man every day. When it was time for the former president of Katz Radio and ex-chief operating officer of Clear Channel Radio Sales to lease a new car, he drove 15 miles out of his way to the Long Island dealership for which Stern regularly voiced a paid endorsement. “That was me saying ‘thank-you’ to Howard,” Agovino emphasizes. “It was not me necessarily wanting” to give that particular establishment the business but “it was me giving appreciation to Howard for all the laughs.” Stern’s “influence” over Agovino to sign the car lease was considerable and as he hastens to add, that meant he had to drive that extra 30-mile (roundtrip) distance “for every service visit” for a three-year period. “It is love for a show,” Agovino insists. “That was not part of my last ten years but it is very much part of what we do at PodcastOne, so it is “back to the future.’ It is digital media, but it is one-to-one and back to the art form of what made me fall in love with radio advertising.” When Agovino gets together with his former Katz co-workers, he points out there is considerable laughter. “We enjoy what we went through back then and we talk about how much fun the business was. More times than not, when you get in a discussion with someone you have known for 25 – 30 years in the audio business, the closer you get to the present moment in the discussion, the less fun you will be having. That sucks for all of us and it is unfortunate.” He has, however, rediscovered the ‘art’ piece of the business and Agovino did not realize how much he missed it. What he has found to become important on the podcast side is that, “It is almost less about targeting a listener and more about making sure you have a great match of product to host. When you try to apply the science of audio impressions to what is happening right now in podcasting, none of the numbers work. They do not make any sense because … there are no rules. We might say to someone who is the right match with the right host we won’t let anyone else in because the credibility of this voice speaking about your brand will last as long as we can continue to make the acquisition of customers in that model an efficient thing for you.” PodcastOne is looking at having its hosts talk about an advertiser a minimum of two minutes throughout the course of an hour without, as Agovino explains, “doing it more than ten seconds at any point – and there is no copy. It has to start from a place of authenticity. The host has to ‘buy-into’ the product or you move onto the next host because it is not going to work for the long haul.” One of the “most traumatic” days in Agovino’s radio sales career occurred when his rep firm lost WMAL, Washington, D.C. but picked up cross-town WTOP the same day. For years, he had been proudly touting WMAL as “the voice of news” in the nation’s capital. “If you approach this with deep sincerity,” he remarks, “it is difficult” to suddenly knock on doors, talking up what had been the competition. “Traditional” ratings metrics, Agovino opines, will not matter that much in this space, although he concedes, “They will happen” and they are “easy enough to produce.” Much more important will be “attribution metrics and convergent metrics. There are many ways to analyze how a particular show produces results within a specific category.” The most recent stats Agovino has seen indicate there are 21.3 million hours of podcasting listening a day. “It is hard to know how big the universe is and how big a piece of that universe you have,” he mentions. A different economic model exists in podcasting since, as Agovino explains, “For the most part, the hosts are taking risks with you and they are not getting guaranteed seven-figure annual checks: We are in this together.” He suggests, “If you have a talent who has influence and impact on a ‘tribe,’ figure out a way to [do a podcast], but you cannot do what you did with streaming. You cannot move it over to digital and expect it to work. This is an infinite dial with niches and sub-niches. Expansion of shows will be tremendous. Things that we are doing and bringing up are ‘kid-in-a-candy store’ stuff for me.”
Public Relations Maven Defines “GMOOT.” After working as public relations director at the Columbia Business School, Richard Laermer founded RLM PR in 1991. He was among the participants at Los Angeles’ hivio 2015 seminar who maintains the audio world is in a state of flux. “Many brands underestimate their audience,” Laermer notes to Mark Ramsey Media president Mark Ramsey in a one-on-one interview. “There is no sense of teasing-out the information about that brand, starting with something small; building upon it; and getting people excited about it.” Referring to Google as the “ultimate PR player, author-media trainer-blogger Laermer states, “They have built upon one message, which is the democratization of everything – even their missteps have always been messaged as the democratization of ‘X,’ ‘Y,’ or ‘Z.’ I respect that a great deal.” One major problem with brands is that everything is short-lived. “In the PR and advertising world, we refer to it as ‘GMOOT,'” Laermer points out of the “Get Me One Of Those” acronym. People who stand behind things “get ahead much faster,” he states. “That seems like common sense but as Aristotle said, ‘There is nothing common about common sense.’ Every single person we interact with – regardless of age – is looking for something to talk about and something to report. If we are consistent, we have the ability to give them that.” It is Laermer’s contention that “public figures” such as on-air personalities and podcasters need to convey what they stand for, “what they believe in, and what they are certain about” because, “These are things that people actually care about. People do want to know what a ‘personality’ thinks about ‘the issues.’ In the land of the tease, you want to be certain that people will come back for more.” Advising that, “It cannot be about the technology,” Laermer states, “It has to be about who are you and what you are putting out there.” Featuring 11 Ramsey-conducted interviews and five presentations, the two-day hivio 2015 conference was held Thursday (6/4) and Friday (6/5) at Hollywood comedy club The Improv.
Emmis Elevates LaMontagne, Osgood, Squire to GSM. Three local sales managers at Emmis New York properties are simultaneously awarded general sales manager stripes. Those promoted at their respective stations are Jennifer Turec LaMontagne at urban AC WBLS “Your #1 Source for R&B”; Chris Osgood at rhythmic CHR WQHT “Hot 97″; and Chris Squire at gospel WLIB. Senior vice president and general manager Deon Levingston comments, “Emmis New York runs the leading stations for hip-hop, R&B, and gospel in the world. In a competitive market like New York, companies have to look ahead on how to continuously deliver great entertainment and to adapt in the ever-changing digital age. By promoting our local sales managers to GSMs, Emmis New York can work towards maintaining close relationships with our clients, effectively training a productive sales team, and efficiently closing 360-marketing campaigns.” LaMontagne joined Emmis as local sales manager last year when the company acquired WBLS from YMF Media. Osgood’s past credentials include being general sales manager of KLOL, Houston; WSB-AM, Atlanta; and WZGC, Atlanta. He was founder/president of Osgood Marketing Group and chief operating officer/part owner of a 14-station radio company in Hawaii. Squire’s background includes being corporate vice president of operations for ICBC, where he oversaw financial and creative operations of ICBC stations in New York, San Francisco, and Philadelphia. He was a senior AE for WLIB “Your Home for Gospel, Inspiration, and Information” and WBLS; similar to LaMontagne, Squire joined Emmis last year following the finalization of the Emmis-YMF Media deal.
Steele Surfaces in Salisbury-Ocean City as Senior VP/Programming. One week from Monday (6/15) is Jimmy Steele‘s start date as iHeartMedia Salisbury-Ocean City, Maryland’s senior vice president of programming. Regional market president Chris Walus states, “Jimmy has an extraordinary record of success in leading operations, developing formats, and coaching top-tier personalities. This – coupled with his remarkable skill for driving breakthrough revenue growth – set Jimmy apart from the pack. Our team is excited and eager for him to start.” Steele remarks that he is “truly grateful and excited for the opportunity to reunite with iHeartMedia” and is looking forward “to working with Chris Walus, along with senior vice president of programming Jon Zellner and regional programming manager Dave Symonds, in advancing our strong and diverse brands in the Salisbury-Ocean City market.” Not to be confused with Emmis vice president of programming/rhythmic CHR KPWR “Power 106,” Los Angeles program director Jimmy Steal, Jimmy Steele previously was operations manager for iHeartMedia San Diego, and Columbus’ regional vice president of programming. The company’s Salisbury-Ocean City operation consists of urban AC WSBY “Magic 98.9″; WJDY “Newsradio 1470″; CHR WKZP “Kiss 95.9″; adult contemporary WQHQ “Q-105″; WTGM “Fox Sports 960″; and country WWFG “Froggy 99.9.”
CCBM Ups Doherty to Marketing Manager. Barnstable, Massachusetts-licensed hot AC WQRC “99-9 The Q” mid-day talent Sean Doherty adds marketing manager duties for parent Cape Cod Broadcasting Media‘s four-station Cape Cod operation. General manager Beverly Tilden states, “Often the best talent is found right under our noses: We were delighted to discover that our search process led us right back to CCB Media. Sean’s [previous experience] has given him a great foundation for marketing creativity driven by results. His positive attitude and determination make him a clear choice to lead the busy CCB marketing and promotion team.” Doherty notes, “I am so grateful for all of the opportunities that Bev and the staff at CCB Media have given me. Bev is known for marketing, so to have her support in this role is an honor. I am incredibly excited to begin this new chapter and bring CCB Media closer to our listeners, website visitors, and business partners.” Doherty, who joined CCB Media last year, formerly was promotion coordinator at iHeartMedia Boston CHR WXKS-FM “Kiss-FM.” In addition to “99-9 The Q,” the three other stations in the CCBM cluster are WFCC “Cape Classical 107.5,” WKPE “Cape Country 104,” and adult contemporary WOCN “Ocean 104.7.” Cat Wilson remains promotion manager.
More RadioInfo Career Moves. The search is on for a new afternoon drive personality at iHeartMedia’s CHR WKSC, Chicago “103.5 Kiss FM” as the station parts ways with Jordan, a.k.a. Ryan Gorman. Chicago media writer Robert Feder reports that evening personality Brady Boski will move into afternoons for now and overnight jock Kevin “Rufio” Santiago will slide down to evenings while a successor is sought…..Chris “DC” Delozier exits Sun Broadcasting-owned rock WXNX, Ft. Myers “93X” after just six weeks with the station. Delozier had been with Beasley’s crosstown rock WRXK “96 K Rock” as program director and air personality until leaving that station earlier this year…..Former WLWK, Milwaukee programmer John Roberts remains with E.W. Scripps to program the company’s Tulsa CHR KHTT “106.9 K-HITS.” Roberts had programmed the adult hits format on “94.5 The Lake” in Brew City prior to its recent flip to country. He takes over for Jet Black at KHTT.
Westwood One Offers Little Big Town-Hosted July Fourth Show. Country act Little Big Town is hosting Westwood One’s “Celebrate the USA,” all-star Independence Day party and 4th of July holiday special. The program is billed as a music special that will include fellow country acts Luke Bryan, Kenny Chesney, Miranda Lambert, Florida Georgia Line, Keith Urban, Jason Aldean, Carrie Underwood, Eric Church and more. Westwood One says, “These country superstars will break out some cool tunes, play patriotic classics, and share their favorite July 4th memories.”
KLIF-FM, Dallas Presents Kaline and Myles Concert for High School Seniors. Five hundred high school seniors from Byron Nelson High School in Trophy Club, Texas were treated to free tickets to Six Flags Over Texas and a concert by Kalin and Myles (pictured here onstage). iHeartMedia urban CHR KLIF-FM “HOT 93.3” awarded the school the tickets after a competition in which the senior class voted over 60,000 times online over a two week period to win free passes to Six Flags and the Kalin and Myles concert for their entire senior class. Meanwhile, thousands of Dallas-area high school seniors attended the concert. KLIF-FM program director Louie Diaz comments, “We had a break from all the terrible weather in DFW that evening and it was a great time for the high school seniors of Byron Nelson and DFW at Six Flags Over Texas. Thank you for a great performance by Kalin and Myles and congrats to the class of 2015!”
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.