Tag: "Tom Joyner"
Rick Thomas Returns Home to Program CBS RADIO’s ’92.3 NOW’ in New York. Moving east from CBS RADIO’s Los Angeles station group where he’s been serving as PD of classic hits KRTH “K-Earth 101” and urban contemporary KTWV “94.7 The Wave” for the past year is native New Yorker Rick Thomas. He assumes the program director role at CHR WNOW-FM “92.3 NOW” effective immediately. The company says Thomas’ replacement at the Los Angeles stations will be announced at a later date. CBS RADIO EVP, operations and New York market manager Scott Herman states, “Rick is a truly talented program director who brings a unique perspective to ‘92.3 NOW.’ He has a multitude of great ideas and the boundless energy needed to compete at this level. We are thrilled to have him at the helm of the station as it continues to break new artists and drive the music and pop culture conversation.” A press statement notes Thomas has had past successes that include “turnarounds and top rankings at” KYLD, San Francisco; KSFM, Sacramento; and XHT, San Diego. “Thomas is also credited with developing rhythmic oldies and rhythmic AC formats in various markets which led to unprecedented ratings at XHR, San Diego and at KUMU, Honolulu.”
Bay Area Combo Appoints Richards OM/PD. It’s a move west for Merlin Media-owned classic rock WLUP “The Loop” and WKQX “The New Home for Alternative” Chicago operations manager Jim Richards who relocates to San Francisco to become operations manager/program director of Cumulus Media‘s KFOG “World Class Rock” and classic rock KSAN “107.7 The Bone.” Corporate program director of rock Troy Hanson comments, “We are delighted to have a programmer of Jim’s caliber and pedigree lead our efforts in the Bay Area. His product passion, digital thought process, and strong talent management acumen are second-to-none. We look forward to Jim duplicating his precise success in Chicago into a big win for us in San Francisco.” Richards states that in his brief time with Cumulus, “I have been really impressed with everyone involved. Their support and appreciation have been amazing. As excited as I am to get back to California, I must thank everyone in Chicago who made my job easy. I am proud of what we accomplished together and am excited to get started in San Francisco.” Richards’ past credits include programming Seattle’s KWJZ “Click 98.9″; vice president of content for Tribune Interactive; vice president of programming at Clear Channel San Diego; and various other programming jobs in Cincinnati, San Jose, Knoxville, and Grand Rapids.
Two Personnel Moves at WEBE, Westport, Connecticut. At adult contemporary WEBE, Westport, Connecticut (New Haven/Bridgeport market), Cumulus Media names a new program director and morning drive host. First, Mike McGowan is upped to PD of the station. He will continue to serve as afternoon drive host where the station says he’s been “successfully maintaining double-digit ratings and keeping station imaging fresh and relatable” for the past two years. Operations manager Danny Lyons adds, “Mike’s talent, creativity and commitment to the WEBE brand will help ensure that we stay on top of the ratings heap for many years to come. Mike is a total team player and has earned these stripes.” At the same time, the station brings morning personality Jay Michaels aboard to take control of the AM drive show. Michaels was most recently with Scott Shannon’s True Oldies Channel. Prior to that, he was morning host at Cumulus’ WFAS, Westchester from 1993 through 2013.
Bubba the Love Sponge Expands into Orlando; Adds Shannon Burke to Cast. The Tampa-based Bubba the Love Sponge show announces it will be airing in the Orlando market beginning Monday (5/5) on Star Development Group-owned sports talk WRSO-AM/FM, “810 CBS Sports Orlando.” The move into the market will mark the return of Shannon Burke – who recently joined the program – to the Orlando airwaves. Burke previously served at Clear Channel’s WTKS-FM. The Bubba show reports that Star Development Group owner and president Carl Como is coordinating the new morning show launch on Monday along with his newly added FM translator launch that will augment Orlando metro coverage on the FM in addition to his 20k AM signal, which reaches a population area of 2.5 million people. Como states, “I wanted a show that had real punch and would make an impact. I know Orlando radio fans will love hearing Bubba return.” This comes as the program celebrates its recent debut in the Reno, Nevada market on Times-Shamrock’s rock KRZQ. That company’s market manager, John Burkavage, says Bubba and his team produces “one of the best morning shows I have heard in 30 years. Bubba will grow my station fast and that is why we added his show, it’s a show that will go viral very quickly.” Bubba comments, “This is an incredible thing for me and my crew. We are already blowing up the phones in Reno – such a great group of people to work with at KRZQ. The show has never sounded better and we are now top three ranked in almost every market we are in. I am thrilled…We are extremely excited about coming back to a place I consider home. We have a huge fan base there and I have no doubt people will be thrilled to have us back in morning drive in Orlando.”
Roberts Upped to Country Brand Manager. The new country brand manager at Great Plains Media is WIBL, Bloomington, Illinois “107.7 The Bull” PD and OM Josh Roberts. Roberts, who serves as OM for the company’s Bloomington-Normal operations, will now oversee the country brands in the company’s Tennessee, Illinois, and Kansas markets. The company says he’ll “oversee music design at WGSQ, Cookeville, Tennessee ‘94.7 The Country Giant’ as well as at KMXN, Lawrence-Topeka, Kansas ‘92.9 The Bull,’ working with group consultants Audience Development Group and working closely with the company’s country PDs in each market.” Great Plains Media president and owner Jerry Zimmer says, “Josh has been instrumental to the development of our country stations for years. He has earned this promotion with hard work and loyalty. No one has more passion for our stations than Josh.”
More RadioInfo Career Moves. At JVC Media’s Gainesville/Ocala, Florida operations, the company gives the program director duties at classic hits WYGC, High Springs, Florida “WOW-FM” to morning drive personality Wolf Bowers…..Also from JVC Media, Dyann Lesnever takes over middays on CHR WMFQ, Ocala “All the Hits Q92.” She slides over from sister EDM/dance outlet WXJZ, Gainesville…..Chris Huff exits his PM drive and music director roles at Cumulus Media’s country KSCS, Dallas “New Country 96.3.” Station OM JR Schumann takes over the duties in the interim.
Hybrid Urban Music and Talk to Air on WTMP, Tampa. According to a story in the Tampa Tribune, WestCoastMedia is announcing it is buying WTMP and will flip the station back to the urban music and talk hybrid format that aired on the signal for 57 years prior to the Spanish and tropical formats that have aired for the past three years. WestCoastMedia is buying the station from Davidson Media Group. Station manager Lawrence Hines tells the paper, “We’ve been gone for way too long. This community needs its voice back, and AM 1150 WTMP is that voice.” Programming will consist of primarily Reach Media-syndicated shows including Tom Joyner in AM drive, Rev. Al Sharpton and D.L. Hughley in afternoons, James Fortune in evenings, and station veteran Larry Steele hosting a midday show. Music will consist of “old-school R&B, soul, funk and jazz.”
Anderson, Giles to Host Gracie Awards Luncheon. When the Gracie Awards are handed out in New York next month, iHeartradio‘s Moll Anderson (“The Moll Anderson Show”) and CBS News contributor Nancy Giles will host the 39th annual awards luncheon. The Gracie Awards were established in 1975 and are presented by the Alliance for Women in Media Foundation. This occasion will honor accomplishments of women in media and entertainment at the local, public, online and student levels. AWMF chair Kay Olin observes that the luncheon is “a wonderful chance to recognize the amazing accomplishments of women in so many forms of media. Moll Anderson and Nancy Giles represent a diverse range of media and reflect the Gracies’ strong commitment to recognizing accomplishments of all markets of talent.” Anderson comments, “It’s an honor to be included among so many amazing and accomplished women, those who have blazed new trails and shown the way for others in media and entertainment. According to Giles, “The Gracies are my favorite events of the year. They are such a wonderful way to honor the unique work that women are doing in an array of media.” National winners will be honored later this month (5/20) in Los Angeles (Beverly Hills). The Gracies recognize exemplary programming created for women, by women and about women in all facets of electronic media, as well as individuals who have contributed to the industry.
WILV, Chicago Begins Cash Giveaway Promotion Benefitting Listeners and Charities. At Hubbard Radio adult hits WILV, Chicago, a promotion for the month of May begins called “May Money Match.” The on-air and online contest gives listeners the chance to win $500 cash for themselves and $500 for their favorite non-profit charity. Listeners register their name and the name of their charity on the station’s website and then listen during middays to hear their name. If they call within 15 minutes, they – and their charity of choice – are winners. WILV program director Marty Bender comments, “This is just flat out a better way to give away money. In a world where we win some and lose some, we can at least offer up the chance to now win some and give some. Simply pay yourself and have us pay it forward too. WILV is proud to facilitate this opportunity for our listeners and those in need.”
WHAT’S NU? Paul McCartney Delivers New Song Today Called “New” from Forthcoming New (Hear Music) LP that Deserves Immediate Attention. iHeartRadio Festival Las Vegas headliner Sir Paul McCartney has a new song that has burst upon the scene today. It’s called “New” and will be featured on his forthcoming album, also called New (Hear Music), set to be released on October 15. This is the first record of new material from McCartney since 2007′s Memory Almost Full (Hear Music) and his latest record since 2012’s Kisses on the Bottom (Hear Music) that featured covers of pop/jazz standards. According to RadioInfo music editor/director Duane Doobie, “This could be one of the most important records to come down the pike in quite some time, based upon the quality and universal appeal of this wonderful new song, and hopefully the will and cleverness of both pop and rock radio to capitalize on the opportunity to play it with a strong sense of purpose.” The album includes 12 songs and several different producers. The single, “New” is produced by DJ Mark Ronson (previously collaborated with Amy Winehouse and Duran Duran). The other producers include Ethan Johns (Kings of Leon, Laura Marling) and Paul Epworth (Adele, Florence and the Machine). Talking about making the album on BBC Radio 2 this morning, Sir Paul said: “The songs are quite varied. I was going to do one song with each producer and see who I got on with best but I got on with all of them. Paul Epworth is more, ‘let’s make it up,’ Ethan is more acoustically inclined.” The fourth producer on the record is Giles Martin, the son of legendary Beatles producer George Martin. According to the Doobster, “‘New’ reminds us of the original Beatles sound that was a highly nuanced blend of simple pop sensibilities with infinitely abstract and sophisticated overtones. It’s got the goods that made the Beatles special and all it needs is for radio to present it as such so as to put it directly into the brains of a wide spectrum of generations still interested in and attracted to the Beatles! This is an out-of-the-box number one radio song if there ever was one — and THAT’S what the RadioInfo charts are about: immediate airplay potency for stations smart enough to program on a minute-by-minute, song-by-song basis.” In another interview earlier today with BBC Radio 6, Sir Paul sums it up, “I think people will recognize it as definitely me.” The new Paul McCartney song “New” will debut next week at #1 on both the RadioInfo Pop and Rock Songs Charts. To hear Paul McCartney’s “New” please click here.
12 Years and Counting for WLNK’s Matt & Ramona. Greater Media Charlotte announces it has inked afternoon drive team Matt & Ramona to a new, multi-year deal to keep the pair with the station. The term of the contract is not being announced but Greater Media Charlotte vice president and market manager Rick Feinblatt is thrilled with the work Matt Harris (front, left) and Ramona Holloway (front, right) are doing at the hot AC station. “Matt and Ramona have done an amazing job in the afternoon drive slot on the station over the past 12 years. We are thrilled to be able to continue this exciting partnership and have them entertain our listeners for years to come.” In addition to being on the air on WLNK-FM, Ramona joined Colleen Odegaard as co-host of “Charlotte Today” back on January 7 for this year. The TV show airs from 11:00 am to 12:00 noon on Charlotte’s local NBC affiliate.
Will Hamrick Named OM at HitShop Records. HitShop Records announces Will Hamrick is being promoted to operations manager for the label. In his new role, Hamrick will manage the overall operations of the label and report to HitShop president, Skip Bishop, who states, “Having Will’s acutely focused attention on HitShop’s day-to-day operations is a perfect step for our company’s growth. I have great confidence in his ability to move us into the future!” The label says that Hamrick is a charter member of the Ramblin’ Music Group staff. He’s held key roles at the label including artist relations/day-to-day management for artist Weston Burt and radio promotions stints as national coordinator and secondary radio rep. The label says that in addition to his new role as operations manager, “he is involved in the innovative roll-out of dynamic new talent, Natalie Stovall and The Drive.” Hamrick says, “I’m incredibly excited and grateful to take on this new role for such an innovative and cutting-edge company. I look forward to working alongside Skip Bishop as we continue to grow HitShop Records.” He can be reached at email@example.com and 615-854-9749.
Leslie Sturm to AdLarge. Former three-year United Stations Radio Networks senior account executive Leslie Sturm joins the sales staff of AdLarge Media. The 1987 Rutgers graduate will be based in New York, where she will report to chief revenue officer, radio sales Don Wachsmith, who comments, “Leslie has a terrific combination of radio sales and advertising agency experience that gives her exceptional insight into advertisers’ needs and goals.” Co-founder/chief executive officer Gary Schonfeld remarks, “Leslie has exhibited an ability to pinpoint the core objective of an advertising campaign and identify the right platforms and environment for reaching and engaging a client’s target audience.” Meanwhile Sturm adds that she was “attracted to AdLarge as a growth company” and because of “its extensive array of premium sports and digital properties.” She adds, “AdLarge’s strong content and digital partnerships provide advertisers with customizable options for deep integration and multi-media campaigns.” Sturm previously was senior account manager at SiriusXM Satellite Radio; spent 10 years in ad sales for Premiere Radio Networks and MJI Broadcasting; and she was NW Ayer/MediaEdge‘s vice president, associate director of Network Radio.
NRG Media Names Terry Peters Market Manager for Northwoods Region. Based in Rhinelander, Wisconsin, NRG Media’s Northwoods Radio Operation consists of Rhinelander stations country WHDG, “Hot New Country”; adult hits WRHN; and classic country WOBT-AM/FM. The group also includes classic rock WRLO, Antigo and news/talk WLKD, Minoqua and oldies WMQA, Minoqua. Terry Peters assumes the market manager position for the cluster effective immediately. NRG Media COO Chuck DuCoty says, “We have selected a manager for this important cluster who meets all of our criteria including radio managerial experience, a broad depth of experience in industries important to our growth in radio and, equally important in this area, an understanding, appreciation and love of the unique area and lifestyle that is the Northwoods of Wisconsin.” In accepting the position, Peters states, “I am thrilled to be working with NRG Media in the Northwoods of Wisconsin, which I’ve always considered one of the most beautiful spots on earth!”
Steve Harvey Show Kicks Off Fall with A-List Guests and Jewelry Giveaway. Premiere Networks nationally syndicated urban morning program “The Steve Harvey Show” is launching into the fall season with a slate of high-profile guests and a jewelry giveaway during the week of September 9 – 13. Harvey is encouraging listeners to register online at SteveHarvey.com for the random drawings to take place during the week where, each day, one registrant will win a ladies diamond ring and a pair of men’s diamond cuff links. Special guests during the week will include: filmmaker Tyler Perry, hitmaker John Legend, HLN’s Nancy Grace and Clark Howard, ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith, and two of TV’s favorite doctors, Dr. Phil and Dr. Oz.
Tom Joyner Celebrates Labor Day Weekend with ‘Family Reunion’ in Orlando. Reach Media-syndicated urban morning show host Tom Joyner, with sponsor Allstate Insurance Company, is presenting the “2013 Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion” this weekend at the Gaylord Palms Resort & Convention Center in Orlando. The weekend includes “stellar concerts, access to Universal Studios, Sea World and Islands of Adventure; interaction with celebrities and leaders, enlightening seminars, and endless activities for people of all ages inside the free expo that is open to the public.” Joyner says, “The Allstate Tom Joyner Family Reunion creates an atmosphere of one true family that celebrates people and what we love. When we first created this event, we wanted families to experience a truly spectacular vacation that was unique, all-inclusive, affordable and more than anything…entertaining. And not only have we done that, but we’ve done it for 10 years strong. We have created a new Black Family tradition that has come to represent entertainment, exclusivity and fun – and I hope we continue creating lifetime memories for families for another ten years and more.”
SiriusXM to Broadcast Mumford & Sons Concert Tonight. The Grammy Award-winning British act Mumford & Sons performed last night at the historic Forest Hills Stadium in Queens, New York. This evening (8/29) at 6:00 pm ET, SiriusXM will broadcast a recording of the concert and replay it several times over the Labor Day weekend. The Forest Hills Stadium at the West Side Tennis Club was once one of the “destination” venues for pop acts, having hosted The Beatles, The Rolling Stones and The Who, to name a few. For a number of reasons, the stadium ceased to be a concert venue and fell into disrepair. This summer, the club began bringing concerts back to the stadium.
20 Complete RAB/BMI Scholarship Training Seminar. On August 20 and 21, 20 scholarship recipients were welcomed at the BMI offices in Nashville to complete the Sixth Annual Rising Through the Ranks, Women in Radio Management & Leadership Training Program, presented by the Radio Advertising Bureau in conjunction with BMI and the Mentoring and Inspiring Women in Radio Group. The two-day course emphasized the specific needs of women in management roles, including enhancing their overall management knowledge and skills. Some 15 executives working in the radio business presented courses to the scholarship attendees. RAB president and CEO Erica Farber states, “The future of our industry is in good hands with this year’s class of scholarship recipients. With the help of the RAB, BMI and MIW, these women are poised to lead their teams and our business. They are energized, empowered, and ready to implement the lessons learned at this seminar.” The group of 20 plus instructors are pictured here.
New Morning Show at WSB-FM, Atlanta (“B98.5″). “Jeff (Elliott) and Melissa (Carter)” will debut tomorrow (8/14) as the new morning team on Cox Media Group, Atlanta adult contemporary WSB-FM “B98.5.” Elliott formerly did mornings at CBS Radio country outlet WIRK, West Palm Beach and spent seven years at Clear Channel hot AC KDMX, Dallas. Most recently, Carter was afternoon co-anchor at Cumulus, Atlanta’s WYAY “All-News 106.7″; she previously was part of WWWQ “Q100″‘s morning drive “Bert Show” in that market for roughly ten years (2001 – 2011). “Jeff and Melissa will bring a fresh approach to mornings on B98,” remarks Cox Media Group Atlanta Radio vice president/general manager Ben Reed.
WMJX Names Nika Schena Local Sales Manager. Greater Media, Boston rhythmic hot AC WBQT “Hot 96.9″ general sales manager Nika Schena shifts to adult contemporary sibling WMJX “Magic 106.7″ as local sales manager. “This was a critical hire for us and we were looking for an ‘A-Team’ to take our efforts at ‘Magic’ to the next level,” the cluster’s director of sales Mark Keaney comments. “We wanted to attract the best talent in the market for the role and that talent was right under our nose.” Emerson College graduate Schena previously held Boston radio sales positions for Entercom (as an AE for talk WRKO) and Clear Channel. Prior to the first of this year, “Hot 96.9″ was talk WTKK.
CRS Accepting 2014 Country Radio Hall of Fame Nominations. Candidates seeking entry to On-Air Personality Hall of Fame must have at least a 20-year on-air career in radio, with a minimum of 15 in country radio. In addition, he or she must have made, “significant contributions to the growth and development in the country radio industry, and ongoing contributions to the preservation and enhancement of country music as an art form.” Radio Hall of Fame requirements are exactly the same as the On-Air Personality Hall of Fame, excluding the “on-air” criteria. Air-checks, press clippings, award listings, and other materials may be included for consideration. Country Radio Seminar officials will provide each nominee an official application, which must be returned to CRS offices by (Friday) September 6. “The Country Radio Hall of Fame is the highest honor bestowed on a country radio professional,” declares CRS Hall of Fame chair RJ Curtis. “This will set in motion our effort to recognize the true legends of broadcasting in our industry.” A selection committee consisting of country radio and industry veterans, as well as members of the Country Radio Hall of Fame, will determine inductees. Next year’s ceremony will be part of the Country Radio Hall of Fame Dinner, (Tuesday) February 18 at the Nashville Convention Center. Online nominations should be submitted to www.CountryRadioSeminar.com; applications received after September 6 will be held for consideration for 2015′s Hall of Fame class.
REACH Media To Distribute Afternoon Drive “D.L. Hughley Show.” Launch date for the daily 3:00 – 7:00 pm music-intensive program hosted by comedian, author, actor, television personality D.L. Hughley is still to be determined, but REACH Media CEO David Kantor comments, “D.L. is the right personality to provide a new style of content in afternoon drive. ‘The D.L. Hughley Show’ will be engaging, fun, [and will feature] great music.” Remarking that he is “excited to get back to radio,” the former host of CNN‘s “D.L. Hughley Breaks The News” comments, “It couldn’t have come at a better time. Radio fits my sensibility. I want [the show] to be fast, funny, and topical. I want to make people laugh a lot and think a little. Some people want to push the envelope – I want to see if I can singe it a little.” A Peabody Award winner for his work on “The Endangered List,” Los Angeles-born Hughley is widely-known for the TV series “The Hughleys” (1998-2002) and for being one of the four comedians featured in Spike Lee‘s “The Original Kings of Comedy.” Four years ago, he began what would be a one-year run as morning personality for New York City’s WRKS “Kiss 98.7,” opposite fellow “King of Comedy” Steve Harvey on WBLS. Earlier this year, Hughley participated on “Dancing with the Stars.” Cumulus Media Networks will collaborate with Radio One subsidiary REACH Media, founded ten years ago by Kantor and Tom Joyner, in affiliation and other show aspects.
MEDIA BROKER SPOTLIGHT: Art Holt of Holt Media Group. In this week’s installment of Media Broker Spotlight, Sandi Bergman of RadioTVDeals.com interviews media broker Art Holt of Holt Media Group in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Holt’s long career in radio goes back to being an air talent and engineer in Texas at a variety of stations and markets across the state where he moved his way up to working in Dallas with radio broadcasting legend Gordon McLendon. He eventually wound up owning and operating a 20 station medium market station group for more than three decades and then went on to become a broker. Holt agrees with this publication’s contention that the time is right for good broadcast managers who have been squeezed out of their positions by consolidation and market conditions to get into first-time ownership on a local level. He says, “Times have never been better for a buyer to go into medium and small market radio ownership! The big corporations continue to ignore true localism; they’re focused on cost cutting to service their huge debt hangovers from their spending sprees in the last decade. The local newspaper is no longer the formidable presence or strong advertising competitor it was in the past. This is a great opportunity for a local owner! The conglomerates’ problems have become the local operator’s opportunity! There are strong opportunities for station turn-around and format changes at neglected stations for the new DIY operator. In selected markets, brokers can offer strong cash flow deals at workable multiples to qualified buyers. Good and talented radio people are being made redundant daily by the giant corporations, and as a result, localism in radio is now pretty much just a memory except when a local owner comes in to take over and super-serve the community. And, it’s a fact that the best and most advertiser-effective radio is local radio. For displaced radio executives, this is definitely a golden age of radio ownership… with wide open opportunities to fill the need for good local radio, both on the air and on the street. Local radio markets welcome local owners who become involved in the community and who know the local advertisers on a first name basis.” Holt offers several opportunities for displaced station managers and first-time entrants looking to roll up their sleeves and take on an ownership project. To read the entire installment of Media Broker Spotlight, please click here.
KYZZ Trades Sports for Classical. Silent since July 31, Monterey-Salinas-Santa Cruz’s sports-formatted KYZZ (formerly “ESPN 97.9″) becomes classical “k-Mozart 97.9″ under new owner Saul Levine. Buckley Broadcasting purchased KYZZ eight years ago from Wolfhouse Broadcasting and over the years it had been CHR and rhythmic CHR. Levine – whose Mount Wilson FM Broadcasters owns classical KMZT-AM, Los Angeles (as well as country KKGO there) acquired “Mozart 97.9″ about three months ago. The market had been without a classical station since 2011, when Mapleton transitioned KBOQ out of the format. Under the sports umbrella for approximately one year, KYZZ is currently airing commercial-free as “k-Mozart.”
Sotelo Set to Surface on Satellite Radio. One of the most popular on-air talents in Hispanic radio, Mexican immigrant Eddie “Piolin” Sotelo suddenly disappeared the week of July 22 when Univision cancelled his 10-year-old morning drive “Piolín por la Manana” program. SiriusXM though is launching an entertainment channel, which will feature Sotelo in his familiar day-part on “El Show de Piolin.” Sotelo comments, “As I tell my listeners, ‘We came to succeed,’ and now, as we step up to a new level, I will be doing that on the biggest radio platform possible. I can’t wait to fly free and for the first time be truly available coast-to-coast.” SiriusXM president/chief content officer Scott Greenstein remarks, “Piolin’s fans are loyal and supportive, and we are thrilled to welcome Piolin back to radio. Piolin will draw subscribers and advertisers alike, and represents our commitment to bring the best and most comprehensive lineup of Spanish-language radio programming to a nation of listeners.” It was approximately one week after Univision pulled the plug on “Piolin” when it was revealed that, in an April letter to Univision, morning show writer-producer-performer Alberto “Beto” Cortez accused “Piolin” of sexual harassment. Cortez’ attorney, Robert Clayton suggested it was a common occurrence among those who worked for Sotelo. In addition, Cortez accused Sotelo of falsifying letters and public support for his immigration reform campaign. Sotelo, through his attorney Jeffrey Spitz, however responded that, “A disgruntled, troubled employee has made malicious and false claims. This was done as part of a demand for money. The employee’s allegations of harassment and falsification of immigration letters are pure fiction.” Sotelo’s live, four-hour, call-in show will be on SiriusXM later this year.
Brad Paisley and Carrie Underwood Named “CMA Award” Hosts (Again). In fact, this will be the sixth successive year for them in the capacity of Country Music Award hosts. CMA Board of Directors President Ed Hardy comments that Carrie Underwood and Brad Paisley are “the consummate” hosts. “They have the respect of our industry, artistic credibility, critical acclaim, and a quick-witted, genuine rapport that makes them popular with our audience and the viewers at home.” Paisley is a 14-time CMA winner and Underwood has five such awards. The show airs live November 6 on ABC-TV from Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena.
Northwest CHR Lineup Set. The on-air roster is now set for Clear Channel-owned KYNW “Now FM, Hit Music for the Northwest.” Valentine will do mornings, just as he does on KBIG, Los Angeles; Marci Wiser is the station’s mid-day host; KIIS, Los Angeles morning mainstay Ryan Seacrest handles afternoon drive; and “Extra” host Mario Lopez is on from 7:00 pm – midnight. Licensed to Centralia, Washington, the CHR serves Seattle, Tacoma, and Olympia.
USRN Expands Phantom Producer to Mainstream Rock. This becomes the seventh format for the United Stations Radio Networks’ online production app and the first time it is available to one specifically targeting younger men. The service gives users the ability to audition, mix and download customized or generic sweepers, jingles, audio links and other interstitial production elements via a password-protected website. Phantom Producer works via an online user interface that accesses client station elements. Former Merlin Media News Network vice president of production Jerry Rohira is brought in as rock imaging producer. Phantom Producer’s Jeff Thomas points out that he worked with Rohira on the launch of Howard Stern‘s satellite show and, “I immediately fell in love with his work, his sense of humor and his understanding of rock imaging.” Rohira adds, “Phantom Producer is definitely ‘next level’ – it is the coolest thing to come along in the imaging world in years.” The application has been previously available to adult contemporary, hot AC, CHR, classic rock, classic hits and country stations.
CBS-Less Time Warner Customers Are Beginning to Get Antsy. It has been less than two weeks (8/2) since Time Warner Cable yanked CBS-TV programming in New York, Los Angeles, and Dallas in a carriage dispute. Disappearance of The Eye Network is affecting 3.2 million customers and many of them are starting to lose their patience. Interim FCC chair Mignon Clyburn says she will take “appropriate action” if CBS-TV and TWC cannot settle their quarrel, although an FCC spokesperson would not comment further on what that might entail. In a statement, TWC notes, “We agree with the chairwoman that consumers are being adversely affected. We hope that CBS soon will come to a reasonable agreement with us that is fair to our customers and their viewers.” According to CBS, its primetime audience is off by roughly 46,000 viewers, compared with the previous week. It seems that, while programming fees are a principal roadblock, there is a larger issue with digital. TWC reportedly will agree to increase its fee, but wants to keep the same bundle of digital rights it held under the old pact. CBS though wants to be able to sell shows to entities such as Amazon and Netflix. Now that the NFL pre-season is underway and with the fall TV schedule looming, viewer frustrations are bound to heighten even more. According to an Ad Age report, RadioShack has enjoyed “a double-digit spike in high-definition antennas” in those three markets. The Ad Age article states, “It is unclear exactly how many antennas sold that translates into” since RadioShack declined to share “concrete numbers.” In New York, there is a month-long free trial of Aereo, which transmits CBS signals to laptops, mobile devices and computers for $8 a month. CBS programming is free on the CBS mobile app and CBS.com the day after airing; however, CBS is blocking video to those using a TWC IP address. In a separate fee battle that has been going on since July 25, TWC has blacked out Journal Communications‘ NBC affiliate, WTMJ, Milwaukee, to southeastern Wisconsin cable subscribers.
More Q2 News from Cumulus Media; Dickey High on “Nash.” RadioInfo reported Cumulus Media’s second quarter revenue numbers yesterday. However, during the conference call with investors that took place later in the day, CEO Lew Dickey spoke in a bit more detail about various aspects of the company’s business. For competitive reasons, Dickey did not go into great detail but he spoke glowingly about New York country station WNSH “94.7 Nash FM” and stated that the company’s “Nash” initiative is just beginning. He said for all intents and purposes, “Nash” right now is just the New York station but that will change in 2014 and more facets of the initiative are put into place. But he did note that he considers 85 country stations to be on the “Nash” platform with just nine stations actually branded “Nash” right now. He said the company will provide a full report on that multi-platform strategy during the Q3 conference call. He touted the Blair Garner-led morning program heard on WNSH, New York and said, “This is the biggest show in country radio by far, and they’re broadcast in front of a live studio audience out of our NASH studios, and we expect to begin our video offering of the show in early 2014.” Thanks to Seeking Alpha for the transcript. Members can see it all here.
Former Univision Radio Star Eddie ‘Piolin’ Sotelo Accused of Sexual Harassment. The Los Angeles Times digs into the previously unexplained departure of Spanish radio morning drive star Eddie “Piolin” Sotelo from Univision’s KSCA, Los Angeles and the 50-some affiliate stations around the country and uncovers charges of sexual harassment leveled against Sotelo by former show cast member Alberto “Beto” Cortez. Sotelo attorney Jeffrey Spitz tells the paper the claims are false and motivated by money. The Times reports Sotelo was “’physically, sexually and emotionally harassing’ Cortez for a three-year period ending last January and that a claim was made to Univision executives in April. Cortez attorney Robert Clayton claims to have interviewed other employees who have corroborated Cortez’s claims. Read the entire Los Angeles Times piece here.
Urban Oldies Returns to Cincinnati on WCFN. Radio One gives up on sports talk on WCFN, Cincinnati and flips the station to urban oldies as “Old School 100.3” featuring Tom Joyner for the morning drive program. The rest of the air staff and the new program director are expected to be announced soon. The Cincinnati Enquirer’s John Kiesewetter chronicles the demise of “100.3 The Fan.” The station was a CBS Sports Radio Network affiliate and lasted seven months in the format.
Greater Media Promotes Jake McCann to Director of Sales for Detroit Stations. Jake McCann moves from Greater Media’s Philadelphia stations where he was general sales manager at sports talk WPEN “97.5 The Fanatic” and classic rock WMGK. In Detroit he’ll be in charge of sales for rock WRIF, classic rock WCSX and currently-AC-but-rumored-to-soon-be sports talk WMGC. The fact that McCann has experience selling sports talk could be part of the reason McCann is making this move if, as expected, WMGC flips to sports in August. In a statement, Greater Media Detroit market manager Steve Chessare says, “Jake is the right person to lead our three station sales operation in the Motor City. His passion, dedication and leadership are exactly what we need to take our three outstanding radio properties to the next level.”
Kevin Gardner Named PD at Urban AC KRNB, Dallas. Service Broadcasting announces Kevin Gardner is the new program director at urban adult contemporary KRNB, Dallas “Smooth R&B 105.7.” Service Broadcasting Dallas operations manager Michael Erickson states, “We are so fortunate to have found someone who is experienced, instinctive, creative and constantly growing stronger. Kevin’s character, leadership and commitment to the community made him stand out from the competition and an ideal fit to help move our company forward.” Gardner previously programmed Cox Media Group’s urban contemporary WCFB, Orlando “Star 94.5.”
Rick Moorten Joins ‘Jammin’ Z90.3” in San Diego for Mornings. After exiting KWYD, Boise “Wild 101,” Rick Moorten lands at Local Media San Diego’s CHR XHITZ, San Diego “Jammin’ Z90.3” to host the morning drive show. On returning to San Diego, Moorten says, “I am beyond thrilled to be coming back to a city I consider my one and only true home! I’ve had a fantastic time working in Boise, a city full of some of the kindest, most considerate, wonderful people you’ll ever meet. This is a great opportunity for me and the dream job I’ve been looking for. I can’t wait to get in the chair, get behind the mic, and have at it!”
More RadioInfo Career Moves. Dave Mason is named assistant program director at CBS Radio’s KRTH, Los Angeles “K-Earth 101.” Mason begins September 4 and makes the move north from his current gig as PD and midday host at Broadcast Company of the Americas’ classic hits XHPRS, San Diego “105.7 The Walrus.”…..Radio One Cincinnati operations manager Steve Harris exits the cluster that includes hip hop WIZF “101 The Wiz,” talk WDBZ, and urban oldies WCFN “Old School 100.3.”…..Angelica Balderas is appointed senior vice president of integrated marketing solutions for Entravision Communications in Sacramento…..Amie Burke is upped to full-time promotions director for Cumulus Media’s Flint, Michigan cluster.
Drake Joins iHeartRadio Music Festival Lineup. Clear Channel announces that Grammy Award-winning artist Drake is added to the iHeartRadio Music Festival lineup scheduled for September 20 and 21 in Las Vegas. CC notes that Drake’s performance on Saturday September 21 will follow the September 17 release of his new record “Nothing Was the Same.”
Outgoing Conclave Executive Director Tom Kay Saluted. Benztown joins fellow sponsors and attendees of The Conclave 2013 in honoring outgoing executive director Tom Kay at the opening reception of the event on Wednesday evening. Pictured here are (from l-r): Dave “Chachi” Denes of Benztown; current Conclave executive director Bob Shannon; Kay; and Masa Patterson of Benztown. Tom Kay retired from his post after 36 years of service to The Conclave, a non-profit organization dedicated to its mission of improving the quality of broadcasting and related industries through education, so they may better serve the public interest. Kay initially served The Conclave as a member of the organization’s first advisory board in 1976, when he was PD of WJON, St. Cloud, Minnesota. In 1979, he became Conclave coordinator and in 1985, The Conclave became a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, and its board of directors named him executive director, a post he held for 28 years. Photo: Jim Steinfeldt.
Walter Sabo Interviewed by Bob Shannon at The Conclave. In a riveting one-on-one presentation, Sabo Media CEO Walter Sabo was interviewed by The Conclave executive director Bob Shannon yesterday (7/18) during the conclusion of the second day of the three-day industry gathering in Minneapolis. Sabo discussed a number of the highlights of his colorful career in radio and explained his view of the evolving relationship between popular culture and video on the internet. The consultant also discussed radio’s need to take more chances on new concepts and stop the practice of playing follow the leader. The Conclave concludes today (7/19) with “Game Day” sessions geared to sports radio and a trip this evening to a Minnesota Twins baseball game.
Ozzy Osbourne Tees Off on Rolling Stone During Interview with WAAF, Boston’s Mistress Carrie. WAAF, Boston afternoon drive personality Mistress Carrie interviewed Ozzy Osbourne on her radio show about Black Sabbath’s new album “13” and, though the two talked about the music and the band’s tour (she was asked to stick to talking music), Ozzy couldn’t help but comment on the Boston Marathon bombing and Rolling Stone’s decision to put surviving bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev on the cover, saying, “I’m sorry, I wouldn’t put him on a roll of toilet paper, let alone the front cover of Rolling Stone.”
WBOS, Boston to Exchange Rolling Stone Mags for Concert Tickets. Greater Boston Radio’s alternative “Radio 92.9” is offering listeners the opportunity to bring in their subscription copy of Rolling Stone (must have the mailing label on it) and exchange it for a pair of random concert tickets as a means of protesting the magazine’s choice to put surviving Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev on its cover. The station says it will then send all the mags it gets back to Rolling Stone and hopes to make it a “BIG box.”
RadioInfo Career Moves. Randy Alomar is the new afternoon drive personality at Oasis Radio Group’s classic hits WHPP, Fort Wayne, Indiana “Rewind 106.3.” Indiana Radio Watch tells us Alomar moves over from Sarkes Tarzian’s AC WAJI and oldies WLDE where he was promotions director and air personality.
Rachel Jeantel Appears on WHQT, Miami; Will Accept Joyner Offer. Trayvon Martin friend and prosecution witness Rachel Jeantel appeared on Cox Media’s urban contemporary WHQT, Miami “Hot 105” with personality Rick Party to talk about Martin and the verdict. She also said she would take nationally syndicated radio personality Tom Joyner up on his offer to pay her tuition to a Historically Black College or University. Joyner made the offer through his Tom Joyner Foundation while Jeantel appeared on his program on Tuesday morning (Joyner’s show is carried by WHQT). Joyner offered to help pay for a tutor for Jeantel to finish high school and apply to colleges. Jeantel is pictured here in the WHQT studios on CBS4 television in Miami.
Comedian Sheryl Underwood to Host Afternoons at Hip Hop ‘The Juice FM 107.3’ in Toledo. Welch Communications announces comedian, “The Talk” cast member and Steve Harvey show contributor Sheryl Underwood will begin hosting the drive time radio show “Sheryl Underwood in the Afternoon” on its hip hop outlet WJUC, Toledo “The Juice FM 107.3” August 2 in what sounds like the beginning of a syndication effort. The station says in a statement, “Sheryl and the crew, broadcasting from ‘The Juice’ studios, will be live the entire month of August, putting their particular spin on the topics people are talking about…According to Sheryl the show fits right in to the taping schedule for ‘The Talk,’ which she co-hosts on CBS Television, and her philanthropic endeavors.” Underwood comments, “I am excited and proud to be working in Toledo, especially at this station. I feel like I’ve got new friends and a new family. I’m looking forward to being on the radio again. I’ve wanted to do this for a while. I believe that there is room on the radio for diverse voices. The radio experiences that I had with the ‘Tom Joyner Morning Show,’ and hosting ‘The Sheryl Underwood Show’ on Jamie Foxx’s ‘The Foxxhole’ (on SiriusXM) as well as my current role as a contributor on ‘The Steve Harvey Morning Show,’ have brought me to this place.” The press release goes on to say, “Underwood, along with her ‘Super Producer,’ will lead an on-air cast that includes the talented comedian Kyle Erby and The Juice’s own Tisha Lee and Charlie Mack.”
Get Credit for Your Hard Work, Audit Your PPM Encoding. Bonneville Seattle creative director Chris Pendl writes in this RadioInfo column that it’s a very wise move to take the time to audit your PPM encoding ASAP. Pendl says, “With radio audiences fragmented on different distribution platforms, it’s important to confirm all of our published content has the proper encoding to receive listening credit. Regardless if you’re simulcasting commercials on your digital platforms, if you’re not using PPM-encoded audio to distribute content you’re missing out.” In this must-read piece targeted to programmers, Pendl details why this is so important and provides a step-by-step plan for working with the good folks at Arbitron to make sure your PPM encoding is up to snuff. Read his entire column here.
The Conclave Is Off and Running in Minneapolis. The nation’s longest-running national radio conference is in full swing in Minneapolis. Conclave 38 featured a multi-dimensional, all-afternoon presentation yesterday (7/17) by Fred Jacobs‘ Jacobs Media titled “Jacobs Media Summer School.” This morning (7/18), RadioInfo publisher Michael Harrison delivered the keynote (pictured here). In it he addressed the future role of talent as radio continues to evolve and adapt itself to the new digital era. He drew applause when he stated that music radio must bring back the active disc jockey and reclaim ownership of the music culture – just as news/talk radio has claimed ownership of the political culture and sports talk radio has claimed ownership of the sports culture – in order to survive. Look for extensive coverage of the three-day event including a video of Harrison’s speech shortly in RadioInfo.
Management Re-Alignment at Entercom Sacramento Eliminates Curtiss Johnson’s Station Manager Position. The management at Entercom’s Sacramento cluster announced to staffers that 18-year programmer Curtiss Johnson’s position is being eliminated and he’ll exit the stations Friday. Vice president and market manager Sean Shannon stated in a memo, “I regret to announce that as part of re-engineering our programming department, Curtiss Johnson’s station manager position will be eliminated. Curtiss will be assisting with the transition through this Friday, July 19.” As part of the transition, classic rock KSEG “Eagle 96.9” assistant PD Brian Lopez is taking over the PD role there and will also be responsible for sports talk KCTC (the simulcast of KNBR, San Francisco). Johnson says in a statement, “It was an incredibly successful 18 years in Sacramento as brand manager for KRXQ, KWOD and KSEG professionally. But the part I will cherish and miss the most is the people I worked with. So many will be friends for life. Entercom Sacramento is a special place with a chemistry in the building that few places in the radio industry can match.”
Entercom Boston Snags Andrew Kaiser for Imaging Director at Rock WAAF. Andrew Kaiser is leaving his role at Red Wolf Broadcasting’s alternative WMRQ, Waterbury/Hartford “Radio 104” to join Entercom’s rock WAAF, Boston effective August 5. WAAF program director Ron Valeri states, “Andrew’s high energy, passion for his craft and creative ideas will make an immediate, material difference for the WAAF on-air and online brands.” WAAF says Kaiser brings a wealth of industry experience from his time at ‘Radio 104’ where he served as both creative services director as well as morning drive and evening host of the alternative format station. Kaiser’s duties with the station will include the audio production of the creative elements, adding his spin to the overall sound of WAAF. Kaiser says, “WAAF is one of the great rock stations in the country and to say I’m excited about this opportunity would be a massive understatement. I’m looking forward to working with and achieving much success with my team at WAAF and my new colleagues at Entercom Boston.”
More RadioInfo Career Moves. Marcus D. Najera exits CBS Radio’s hot AC KLLC, San Francisco “Alice@97.3” where he’d been APD and afternoon host since 2008…..Clear Channel brings Josie Lane aboard to co-host the morning drive show with Dan McClain at country WDRM, Huntsville “Country 102.”…..Program director Picazzo Stevens leaves Cumulus Media’s hip hop KVYB, Santa Barbara, California “103.3 The Vibe.”
Midwest Communications Latest Company to Face Copyright Infringement Complaint. The bottom line for radio station website operators here is that if you didn’t take the picture, pay the copyright holder for the photo or receive it as a promotional photo from the copyright holder or owner, then you don’t have permission to use it and you may end up negotiating a settlement that will cost you money. That’s more than likely what Midwest Communications will end up doing after BWP Media filed a complaint in United States District Court Western District of Wisconsin alleging country WBFM, Sheboygan, Wisconsin “B93” posted a copyrighted photo on its website without permission. As is usual in these cases, BWP is seeking $150,000 per infringement but it will probably be settled out of court for much less and that will remain confidential. The photo in question was of Hugh Hefner’s girlfriend in a bathing suit with the caption “Hugh Hefner’s Girlfriend Looks Like a Pregnant Barbie Doll.” Many station websites feature – or have in the past featured – these copyrighted photos and continued the practice because no complaint was filed. Now more than ever though, companies such as BWP Media are actively patrolling the web to catch violators in order to protect their property. Radio station digital brand managers must be vigilant in staying within the law.
Finding Radio Advertising Solutions. Radio is fighting for its piece of the American ad budget pie and numerous industry experts have been calling for better creative and better production in order to compete with the trend that is moving tremendous amounts of ad dollars to the digital frontier. In a piece published today (7/17), RadioInfo managing editor Mike Kinosian offers a brief shout-out to a couple of the industry’s legendary creative talents and then spotlights Cumulus Media’s marketing initiative Sound Solutions. In this story he speaks with EVP/COO Jon Pinch and production manager Robin Marshall about how the company is using this division to woo advertisers to a medium that has a strong history of creating memorable spots that deliver results. Read his story here.
KLOS, Los Angeles Mega-Blood Drive Takes Place Next Week. The 32nd Annual KLOS Blood Drive, what’s being termed “the largest media blood drive event in the country,” has a renewed lifesaving purpose for 2013 – to beat back the crippling effects of the current summer blood shortage. The Cumulus Media station states that “once again, the American Red Cross and ‘95.5 KLOS’ are gearing up to rock Southern California’s airwaves and donor locations with a massive, five-day blood collection effort aimed at stabilizing the region’s seriously low blood supply for more than 160 hospitals. The five-day, twenty-site tour begins Tuesday, July 23, and wraps on Saturday, July 27. Rock lovers across the Southland are invited to donate at any of the blood drive locations throughout San Bernardino, Riverside, Ventura, Orange, and Los Angeles counties.” New PD Derek Madden will broadcast his show live from the Pomona site on Tuesday, July 23 from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm and Gary Moore will be live in Upland on Thursday, July 25 from 2:00 pm to 7:00 pm.
Greater Media Detroit Stations Present ‘Paws at The Hill.’ This multi-purpose pet-centered event takes place on Saturday, July 27 at Freedom Hill County Park where Greater Media’s Detroit stations classic rock WCSX, rock WRIF, and AC WMGC cooperate to present the daylong promotion that features entertainment, pet adoptions, education, shopping, food and beverages. Among the entertainment will be the Disc Dogs of Michigan High Flying Dog Show featuring World Champion Frisbee Dogs! Michigan Search and Rescue is primarily a missing person’s response team. Their dogs are trained to trail the scent of a specific person from their last known location. Dogs are also trained to look for any human scent. Michigan Search and Rescue teams will demonstrate how their hounds put their senses to work. Several location charities will be on site with over 200 cats and dogs available for adoption.
Country’s Doug Briney to Perform at Relay for Life Benefit. 2013 Independent Country Music Association award winner Doug Briney will be performing at the Chester County, Tennessee ‘Relay For Life Benefit” on Wednesday, July 24 where he’ll perform from 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm. Michael Stover of MTS Management Group says, “Doug is one of the most charitable artists that I know. He has performed for Wounded Warriors events, Support Our Troops, St. Jude’s, plus his work with his church. He definitely believes in the ideals of paying it forward and giving back to the community. I hope everyone in the area will come out to support this tremendous event.” At ‘Relay For Life’ events, communities across the globe come together to honor cancer survivors, remember loved ones lost, and fight back against a disease that has already taken too much. Doug Briney’s debut album, “It’s All Country” spent eight months on the Roots Music Report charts, receiving worldwide airplay. His follow up, his first with Tate Music Group, will be released later this year.
Boston Marathon Tragedy Sparks Immense Coverage and Conversation on Talk Radio and Music Radio Morning Shows. One never knows when the next big news story will break and yesterday’s horrific tragedy in Boston is yet another example of the world being one way, one moment — and another way, the next. The Boston Marathon bombing has consumed radio conversation across the board on all-news, talk, sports and music radio morning shows and will likely play a major role as a content generator for days and weeks to come.
Boston Bombing: How Radio Can Help…Or Hurt. Radio consultant Holland Cooke analyzes the media impact of Monday’s bombings at the Boston Marathon as well as what radio can do well and what it should avoid trying to do during tragic breaking news events like these. Cooke writes, “One way radio can help is to ask ‘Could YOU be Boston’s Zapruder?’ Radio everywhere should ask, because people come from everywhere, from all around the world, to this event. And because the internet and that-thing-in-our-pocket-we-used-to-call-a-phone makes everywhere ‘here.’ You don’t even need to be a friend of a friend in the social media age. Radio should ask everyone to ask everyone: ‘Were you in Boston? Look carefully, at all your pictures and videos. Someone saw something.’” For radio station programmers, Cooke advises what he believes radio can do very well that Twitter can’t. Read his entire piece here.
Arbitron’s March 2013 PPM Data Released. The first 12 markets of PPM data were released by Arbitron last night for markets including Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, Middlesex, Nassau-Suffolk (Long Island), New York, Philadelphia, Riverside, San Francisco, and San Jose. See those numbers here. RadioInfo managing editor and West Coast bureau chief Mike Kinosian highlights the Ten Takeaways from the first batch:
- Up one-half share from February, New York CHR WHTZ “Z100″ has its strongest 6+ stat (5.6, #3) since last August (6.1)
- After three successive 1.7 showings (December – Holiday – January), KSWD “The Sound” advanced to 2.2 in February and now adds three-tenths to 2.5, which is the Los Angeles classic rocker’s most potent (6+) performance in the last 39 monthlies (February 2010, 2.8)
- Chicago’s WGCI-FM “#1 For Hip-Hop & R&B” registers its third successive up trend (3.4 – 3.6 – 3.8 – 4.2) and ranks fifth
- Public outlet KQED-FM (+.3 to 5.8) progresses from second to first in San Francisco
- Making one-half share gains in Dallas are regional Mexican KLNO (4.0 – 4.5, #2) and adult hits KJKK (2.9 – 3.4, #12)
- With a three-tenths improvement to 8.0, rhythmic CHR KBXX “The Box” widens its lead as Houston’s #1 (6+) outlet
- Philadelphia rocker WMMR (+.7, #4) continues its upward trend (4.2 – 4.7 – 4.9 – 5.6)
- Adult contemporary powerhouse WALK-FM, Long Island (#1) gains nine-tenths to 7.2
- For the first time since February 2012, Riverside-San Bernardino “Family Friendly” contemporary Christian KSGN (+1.3, #5) is in the four-share range (4.2)
- Spanish adult hits KBRG (+.5) and country KRTY (+.1) trade places at #1 and #2, respectively
Arbitron Settles Copyright Infringement Suit Against Gannett. Ratings company Arbitron announces it has settled a copyright infringement suit against Gannett-owned television station WKYC in Cleveland. The suit was filed on January 25 of this year and alleged that WKYC-TV copied and distributed Arbitron’s copyrighted audience estimates without Arbitron’s permission, and that WKYC-TV improperly used Arbitron’s federally registered trademarks to create the false impression that non-Arbitron audience estimates for internet radio service Pandora were genuine Arbitron products. This stems from WKYC teaming up with Pandora for a co-operative sales venture that went awry. Sales kits were distributed that used Arbitron’s AQH data for a number of radio stations in the Cleveland market. The idea was to show Pandora’s reach by comparison. In the initial suit, Arbitron was seeking $150,000 per copyright infringement. The terms of the settlement are not being disclosed so we’ll never know how much Gannett paid to make this mistake go away.
SiriusXM Unveils MySXM. The customization app for SiriusXM’s internet radio platform gives the service a more “Pandora-like” feel. In a press release, SiriusXM says the new MySXM “empowers listeners with the fusion of personalization and SiriusXM’s curated commercial-free music and comedy channels to create radio’s best listening experience. Enhanced music discovery, increased library size, and many more channel-specific user controls allow listeners to easily create over 100 variations of each of more than 50 SiriusXM channels for unlimited hours of listening.” Putting more control into the hands of listeners, the company says the app “allows users to create the multiple variations on the channels by adjusting characteristics like library depth, familiarity, music style, tempo, region, and multiple other channel-specific attributes.” The company also says it plans to add more channels to the MySXM channel lineup over time. This service applies only to the internet version of SiriusXM and not the satellite radio platform.
Greater Media Names John Mullett Marketing Director at Alternative WBOS, Boston. John Mullett comes to Greater Media’s alternative “Radio 92.9” from Northeast Broadcasting’s triple A WXRV “92.5 The River” licensed to nearby Andover, Massachusetts where he “worked in the traffic department and served as the ‘go to’ person for the sales, programming, and engineering departments at ‘The River’ and ‘The Point’ in Burlington, Vermont.” WBOS program director Ken West states, “John will fit in well with Greater Media and the ‘Radio 92.9’ staff. He impressed us with his passion for music, his understanding of connecting people to the ‘Radio 92.9’ brand, and his positive attitude. We look forward to having John take on all facets of moving the ‘Radio 92.9’ brand forward and creating experiences and stories for our fans and clients.”
WRIF, Detroit Begins Narrowing Down Contestants in Rock Girl Search. Greater Media’s rock WRIF, Detroit has the “Sexy Sixteen” posted on its website as the 16 contestants will be winnowed down to the finalist who will be the WRIF Rock Girl, receive a $40,000 salary and represent the station at concerts, VIP events and on the air. Of course, making remote appearances out of the contest is what it’s all about so the 16 are visiting local establishments to “meet the voters” before they are reduced to the “Erotic Eight” in voting that ends on Sunday, April 21. Then the “Erotic Eight” will hit the town before being reduced to the “Final Four.” They’ll be whisked away to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico for a photo shoot and one lucky WRIF listener will get to go along on the trip. Finally, on May 16 at the Hard Rock Café in Detroit the Final Four party will take place and the 2013 Rock Girl will be crowned. At the party, Buckcherry will perform an acoustic set.
Tom Joyner’s 14th Fantastic Voyage Carries Almost 3,000 Passengers. The recently completed Fantastic Voyage cruise upon the Carnival Glory – presented by Ford – sold out in less than 21 days and carried almost 3,000 passengers. The promotion benefits the Tom Joyner Foundation which primarily supports students attending historically black colleges and universities. Pictured here at the top left is actor Jamie Foxx (l) with Tom Joyner (r) at the Bon Voyage party held on the pool deck of the ship. Hip-hop legends, R&B stars, and comedians including Lil Kim, Trey Songz, Biz Markie, Too Short, Tank, MC Lyte, Rodney Perry, Guy Torry and more joined Foxx on stage to give guests a thrilling send off. In addition to all the fun, the Tom Joyner Foundation not only raised money with the cruise, but also hosted art auctions to generate funds for scholarships and other initiatives to contribute to keeping students in HBCUs. Empowering seminars presented by sponsors of the cruise drew huge crowds. Ford, AARP, Crest, Gain, Southwest Airlines, and Walmart presented seminars encouraging healthy lifestyles, promoting self-awareness, caring for yourself and loved ones as they age, and much more. During the cruise, Snoop Doog (pictured at right) performed on the pool deck backed by Bootsy Collins and the Funk Unity Band.
Industry Mourns Eileen M. Herskovitz. The radio industry mourns the passing of longtime broadcasting figure Eileen M. Herskovitz who died early morning yesterday at her home in Bradenton, Florida. She was the wife of veteran radio executive Al Herskovitz, president of Florida-based marketing firm, H&H Broadcasting, and marketing director of RadioInfo. Eileen Herskovitz served as executive VP of H&H. After attending Ithaca University, Eileen entered the media field as a commercial copywriter for Goldman & Walter advertising agency of Albany, NY where she advanced to become its VP and media director. She also worked at several radio stations during her early career. The Herskovitz’s had recently celebrated their 53rd wedding anniversary. RadioInfo publisher Michael Harrison states, “Eileen Herskovitz was an immensely bright radio professional and a truly marvelous human being. All of us at RadioInfo consider ourselves blessed to have known her and we will sorely miss her.”
Cumulus’ Country Ambitions. The debut of New York City’s new country outlet “94.7 Nash FM” on WRXP, Newark, New Jersey brings a full-market country signal to the Big Apple for the first time in 16 years, but it’s also the beginning of a larger country initiative for Cumulus Media. The company announces the start of a “multi-platform entertainment brand based on the country music lifestyle that will feature radio stations, a monthly magazine, website, social media, concerts and television programming.” Cumulus says it is the largest country radio broadcast company in America with 83 outlets. CEO Lew Dickey states, “Country is more than just music — it’s a lifestyle that is rich with content and marketing opportunities because country is mass appeal and very much underserved in all forms of media. Cumulus is committed to serving this significant lifestyle segment that stretches from coast-to-coast by creating a full complement of content on the radio, in print, online and on TV.” Cumulus says NASH Magazine, published by Modern Luxury, will debut in the second half of 2013 along with an interactive and innovative NASH website. It will also include social media content and exclusive concert events. The company has already applied for “Nash TV” and “Nash Channel” trademarks. As many industry watchers has predicted, the “Nash FM” branding will be applied to all of Cumulus’ country stations. Regarding country radio in New York City, some industry watchers are commenting on the likelihood for success of the country format in New York City with many declaring that just because the format has no competitors at this time doesn’t guarantee success. Lew Dickey is quoted in a Wall Street Journal piece stating the obvious: “Anything you do has risk – but quite a bit of background research showed this is an unserved niche.”
Future of Music Radio Might Be Determined by the Changing Role of the Disc Jockey. It’s easy to say that music radio has changed over the years, but the biggest changes were not when top 40 music began its mass migration from amplitude modulation to frequency modulation in the 1970s. Ownership deregulation, corporate “bottom-lines,” and technology such as the internet and voice-tracking have changed radio forever, and all of these variables came together less than 17 years ago. Nearly gone from the radio lexicon are many staples of radio listening, such as overnight disc jockeys, “small market radio,” “mom & pop stations.” They’ve been replaced with “voice tracking,” “national formats,” and conglomerates with “corporate PDs.” Think about this – New York City’s WPLJ 95.5 morning show host Scott Shannon got his start in radio in the 1960s on top 40 WFBS 1450 in Spring Lake, North Carolina. WFBS now carries syndicated ESPN Radio sports programming, with hardly any local presence. The second station Shannon worked for was top 40 WABB 1480 in Mobile, Alabama, which would later become home for conservative talk radio and nationally syndicated hosts. The third station Shannon worked for, in Nashville, later went dark and is now owned by a Christian ministry. How different might Shannon’s career be if he tried to get his start at these stations today, or even 10 years ago? Would there even be such a thing as a “Morning Zoo?” Today, could a young Scott Shannon even have the chance to make radio a career choice? That’s a question that many young radio enthusiasts have listening to their radios on their computers today. Who will the next Scott Shannon be? Will the next Sean “Hollywood” Hamilton start a pirate station out of his garage and land on a New York station at age 20? Or, is the next young man or woman sitting in their bedrooms listening to the radio right now dreaming of being in a soundproof control room and behind a magnificent control board broadcasting to adoring fans, or driving in a station van to a remote broadcast at a mall, or are they instead dreaming of becoming stock brokers and driving a Ferrari to their beach home? This brings us to “The State of the Radio Disc Jockey.” In this five-part series researched and written by special features correspondent Jeff McKay, RadioInfo will look at the changing face of music radio, and how it has affected the disc jockey on the local and national level. More importantly it will look at the future of music radio in the likely eventuality that the concept of the “personality disc jockey” all but disappears from the industry. What is the future of both music radio and the DJ? Is “personality radio” dying? Can it and should it be resuscitated? Are PPMs the root causes for where radio is today? Is radio itself responsible for killing the radio star? How can DJs survive the corporate ownership “profits over people” philosophy? And, where is radio heading in the next five years? Can music radio be saved – questions not asked to those who own it, but those who have a real ownership stake in that answer – the DJs on the air today. Launching next week on Monday, January 28 in RadioInfo – these are questions that will be answered, in “The State of the Radio DJ.” Be there or be square.
Cruising with Tom Joyner. The photo here shows Reach Media nationally syndicated morning drive host Tom Joyner (bottom center dressed in white) surrounded by the listeners who signed up for his “Fantastic Voyage Cruise presented by Ford” last year. This year’s cruise will set sail April 7 from Miami. Reach Media states that the high-demand R&B cruise, hosted by Joyner has taken his 14th annual “Ultimate Party with a Purpose” to the next level by selling out all cabins in just 21 days! The 2013 Tom Joyner Foundation Fantastic Voyage will include a stellar lineup of today’s biggest R&B acts, theme-night celebrations, exclusive concerts and numerous activities onboard a new ship from luxury cruise liner Carnival. The cruise benefits The Tom Joyner Foundation assisting students attending Historically Black Colleges and Universities. With the foundation as a 501(c)(3) charity, the cruise may be claimed as tax-deductible. Ford, who for the past seven years, has partnered with Tom Joyner to support education and students, will mark their support this year with a contest awarding a two person cabin for two different winners. The contest begins January 21 and will be highlighted on the Tom Joyner Morning Show weekdays through February 1, 2013. Joyner will be directing contestants to participate in a contest on BlackAmericaWeb.com.
“Floydian Slip” Show Adds WBRR, Bradford, Pennsylvania. The weekly Pink Floyd radio show hosted by creator Craig Bailey adds affiliate WBRR, Bradford, Pennsylvania to its list of affiliate stations. WBRR is the latest station to join the show’s Random Precision Radio Network, created by Bailey in summer 2009 when he began syndicating the show from his home studio. “Floydian Slip” is currently heard on 34 stations in the U.S., Canada and overseas. Bailey aired his first episode of “Floydian Slip” in 1989 on Ithaca College‘s 106-VIC in Ithaca, New York when he was a senior television-radio major. He also produced it for Burlington, Vermont’s short-lived WEXP 105.1 FM (Experience 105.1) in 1994, and for 13 years at WCPV, Essex, New York. In its 20 years, the show has earned mentions in, or served as a resource for, media around the world such as Relix; “The Rough Guide to Pink Floyd”; The Ottawa Citizen; VH-1; The Dallas Morning News; “Comfortably Numb: The Inside Story of Pink Floyd”; “Pink Floyd on Forty-Five”; and MacFormat magazine.