Wednesday, August 22, 2018

NPR Politics Plans Deep Drive On Mid-Term Election

Starting September 14, NPR Politics will launch The Politics Show from NPR, a special nine-part weekly radio show leading up to the 2018 midterm elections.

Each hour will provide a deep dive into election news, delivered in the friendly conversational format that listeners of the NPR Politics Podcast have come to know and trust. Listeners will hear insights from NPR journalists as they travel across the country, talking with voters and officials to help listeners understand what's happening on the road to the midterms.The final episode will be released on November 9, which will feature a full recap and analysis of election results.

This limited-run show is a new element of NPR's comprehensive election coverage and will air on public radio stations nationwide; check your local listings for availability and broadcast times.

As always, the NPR Politics Podcast will be available at, the NPR One app, and wherever podcasts are available.

"We are thrilled to be expanding our platform, particularly at a time when reliable news is vitally important," said Beth Donovan, Senior Washington Editor for NPR News. "The 2018 elections will be as consequential as any in recent memory. This show will provide comprehensive fact-based coverage that will help voters make informed decisions at the ballot box."

"The NPR Politics team delivers the news with trademark wit and wisdom," said Anya Grundmann, NPR's Vice President for Programming and Audience Development. "The issues, the facts, the ideas, the discussions with voters - all talked through with friends, and now available specially for broadcast radio."

NPR Politics' multiplatform coverage is also on social media: Like NPR Politics on Facebook and follow @nprpolitics and Twitter for more on the latest political news.

Forecast: Newspaper Revenue To Decline 2.6 Percent Annually

According to a new report from the Freedonia Group called "Newspaper Publishing: United States," more bad news is ahead for newspapers, at least for a little while.

According to MediaPost, the study, which took into account revenue across print-only and print+digital outlets, forecasts that newspaper revenue will decline by 2.6% annually through 2022.

The rate of decline, however, shows signs of improvement going forward, with projected annual losses lessening from the annual rate recorded during the preceding decade.

This improvement is credited to a stabilization following efforts by digital media to find substitutions for lost advertising revenue and a disrupted industry.

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Cuts Print To 5-Days

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the last daily newspaper in the city — announced it would cut print circulation from seven to five days a week. MediaPost reports a digital-only version will post on Tuesday and Saturdays, beginning August 26.

The paper cited rising operational costs as the impetus for the change.

In a story posted on the site and published on the paper’s front page August 12, David M. Shribman, executive editor at the Post-Gazette stated: “By eliminating two days of print the week of Aug. 26 and undertaking a full-throttle commitment to the digital delivery of news, the Post-Gazette is reflecting Pittsburgh’s own transformation from traditional manufacturing into a high-tech center...”

According to Shribman’s piece, the new circulation restrictions follow the 2017 introduction of a daily digital edition of the paper that featured enhanced photography, video and other features called PG NewsSlide. 

The company anticipates using the technology to work directly with local businesses to incorporate direct sales through its ads across the Post-Gazette site.

Ohio-based Block Communications Inc., the parent company of the Post-Gazette, stated it remains committed to the long-term health of its news presence in Pittsburgh and will not cut back its news reporting.

Envision Networks' Matt Wardlaw Compiles Oral History of WMMS

Wardlaw gives exclusive insight into ClevelandEnvision Networks®’ Director of Operations Matt Wardlaw recently penned an oral history of the legendary Buzzard, WMMS 100.7 FM (Cleveland) for its upcoming 50th anniversary for Scene Magazine. The oral history features some of the biggest names from The Buzzard’s 50-years as a heritage radio station including Billy Bass, Denny Sanders, John Gorman, Jeff & Flash, Betty Korvan, B.L.F. Bash, Kid Leo, Joe Cronauer, Jennifer Wylde and Bo Matthews.

 Wardlaw, who worked at ‘MMS early in his career, had this to say: “It’s been a wild ride and I credit my time at WMMS as the source of so much of the knowledge I’ve applied in the years that have followed. It was a real thrill to help craft this mammoth story with Scene’s Jeff Niesel. I felt like it was a chance to repay a bit of the debt that I owe to ‘MMS. My closet will always have Buzzard t-shirts in double digits.”

Jeff Niesel, music editor of Scene Magazine and co-writer of the article added, “In the '70s and into the '80s, WMMS became synonymous with rock 'n' roll in Cleveland. With the station's 50th anniversary looming on the horizon, Scene Magazine is excited to present an oral history of the station that includes interviews with many of the people who made the station so influential.”

Click Here to Read

Check out Matt’s thoughts on the making-of-the-article including unreleased details from his interviews here.

August 22 Radio History

➦In 1906…The Victor Talking Machine Company of Camden, New Jersey began to manufacture a record player called the Victrola. The hand-cranked unit, with horn cabinet, sold for $200. Records had to be purchased separately, usually in the appliance stores that sold the machines, at a price of $1 to $7. Famed conductor John Philip Sousa reacted to the new device by predicting "a marked deterioration in American music" and said that generations of amateur musicians would give way to "canned music."

➦In 1947...after 14 years as a quarter-hour daily serial for kids, “Jack Armstrong, the All-American Boy“, was heard for the first time as a 30-minute three-times-a-week feature on ABC radio.

➦In 1964...The Beatles were in concert at Empire Stadium in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, playing to 20,261 fans.  The Bill Black Combo, the Exciters, the Righteous Brothers, and Jackie DeShannon opened for the group.  The show was broadcast locally by CKNW 980 AM.

➦In 1965...The Beatles performed two shows at Memorial Coliseum in Portland, Oregon.  Mike Love and Carl Wilson of the Beach Boys stopped by between shows to meet the group.

➦In 1970...Bread reached #1 with their first hit--"Make It With You".  That ended a five-week reign for the Carpenters' classic "(They Long To Be) Close To You".  Eric Burdon & War were up to #3 with "Spill The Wine" while the song "War" was at #4 for Edwin Starr.  The rest of the Top 10:  Mungo Jerry with "In The Summertime", Stevie Wonder had #6--"Signed, Sealed, Delivered (I'm Yours)", Clarence Carter moved from 16 to 7 with "Patches", Freda Payne's "Band Of Gold", B.J. Thomas moved into the list with "I Just Can't Help Believing" and one of the great One-Hit Wonders of the Rock Era*, "Tighter, Tighter" by Alive & Kicking was still alive at #10.

➦In 1987..."Who's That Girl" by Madonna became her sixth number one and 13th consecutive Top 10 song.  "La Bamba" by Los Lobos moved up to challenge, Suzanne Vega was at 3 with "Luka" and Richard Marx was up to #4 with "Don't Mean Nothing".  The rest of the Top 10:  "I Want Your Sex" by George Michael, U2 fell from #1 with "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For", Debbie Gibson edged up with "Only In My Dreams", the Whispers found the Top 10 with "Rock Steady", T'Pau slipped with "Heart And Soul" and the first single from Bad by Michael Jackson (with Siedah Garrett on this one)--"I Just Can't Stop Loving You" moved from 16 to 10.

➦In 1990...orchestra leader David Rose died aged 80. He had the 1962 US No.1 single ‘The Stripper’. He led the band on NBC radio’s Red Skelton Show, and wrote music for the TV series Little House on the Prairie and Bonanza.

➦In 2004...Al Dvorin, the announcer who coined the phrase "Elvis has left the building" while working the King's Seventies concerts, dies in a car crash en route home from a Californian Elvis convention.

Jerry Leiber
➦In 2011...Jerry Leiber, who along with Mike Stoller, wrote many of Elvis Presley's big early hits, including "Hound Dog" and "Jailhouse Rock", as well as "Kansas City" for Wilbert Harrison, "Stand By Me" for Ben E. King and "On Broadway" for the Drifters, died in Los Angeles of cardiopulmonary failure at the age of 78.

➦In 2011...Nickolas Ashford of the duo Ashford & Simpson, who wrote songs such as "Ain't No Mountain High Enough", "You're All I Need To Get By", "Ain't Nothing Like The Real Thing", and "I'm Every Woman" with wife Valerie Simpson, and who also was a stellar producer, died at the age of 70 from throat cancer

➦In 2014...A Philadelphia radio legend, Don Cannon, passed away. He was 74.
Don Cannon
According to friends at WOGL, Cannon died from an abscess in his tooth that spread to his brain.

Cannon, who was born Dominic Canzano in Yonkers, N.Y., had been doing morning radio in Philadelphia since 1969, and was the morning man on WOGL 98.1 FM from 1990 until his retirement in 2004.   He began his career with Top40 WIBG and has also been heard on WIP, WFIL, WIFI, and WSNI.

In the eighties, Cannon was program director of WSNI and WPGR.

In the original Rocky movie, when the morning alarm clock goes off for Rocky's run, it was Cannon's voice on the radio.

➦In 2014...retired Milwaukee sportscaster Ted Moore, the radio voice of the Green Bay Packers during their glory years of the 1960s, who spent 48 years pursuing his career in broadcasting, suffered heart failure and died at age 87.

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Pittman, Field To Headline Radio Show Opening Session

Bob Pittman
iHeartMedia Chairman and CEO Bob Pittman and Entercom Chairman, President and CEO David Field will discuss game-changing data and analytic applications and opportunities for radio during a session titled “Data U – A 101 on Data” on September 25 at the Radio Show in Orlando.

The discussion will be moderated by MSNBC Anchor Stephanie Ruhle.

The Radio Show is held September 25-28 and is produced by the Radio Advertising Bureau (RAB) and the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB).

David Field
RAB President and CEO Erica Farber and NAB Executive Vice President of Industry Affairs and Special Projects Steve Newberry will open the session with a primer on how broadcasters can collect and use existing data to discover how listener preferences are changing and gain insight on how best to position, program, market and sell radio. The duo will also demonstrate some of the tools available to capitalize on research to grow listeners and revenue.

Stephanie Ruhle
Bob Pittman is chairman and CEO of iHeartMedia, a leading media, digital and entertainment company with the largest reach of any broadcaster in the United States and over a quarter billion listeners each month. Pittman has held senior leadership positions at AOL Time Warner; America Online, Inc.; MTV Networks; Six Flags; Theme Parks; and Time Warner Enterprises.

David Field is chairman, president and CEO of Entercom, a leading American media and entertainment company and the country’s second largest radio broadcaster. Entercom is the #1 creator of live, original, local audio content in the United States and is a leader in news and sports radio. Field has received numerous civic and professional awards, including the NAB National Radio Award in 2017 and is a three-time recipient of Institutional Investor Magazine’s “Best CEOs in America.”

Stephanie Ruhle anchors “MSNBC Live with Stephanie Ruhle” and “MSNBC Live with Velshi & Ruhle.” She is also a correspondent at NBC News. She previously served as anchor and managing editor for Bloomberg Television and editor-at-large for Bloomberg News.

Explore additional Radio Show sessions here.

WH Radio Reporter Hires Bodyguard

Journalist April Ryan said in a new interview that the White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders should cover the costs for Ryan's security detail amid death threats from people who are critical of her coverage of the Trump administration.

“I've had some people wait for me outside the White House,” Ryan told The Hollywood Reporter. “There is a concern now. I mean, I've had death threats, I've had craziness, so I have a real concern.”

“Do I have a bodyguard?” Ryan said. “Yes, I do. Am I paying for it? Yes, I am. And, I think [Sanders] should have to pay for it, especially if she's stirring it up with her boss.”

“I did not sign up for this. I was just doing a job,” Ryan, the White House correspondent for American Urban Radio Networks, added.

According to The Hill, Ryan said months ago that she received death threats after she asked Sanders if President Trump had considered resigning

“They’re angry. I’ve been getting death threats and we’ve been calling the FBI and I mean, I put one on social media and this is real,” Ryan said at the time to CNN, where she is a contributor.

Ryan, who has repeatedly clashed with Sanders during White House briefings in the past year, is promoting her new book, “Under Fire: Reporting From the Front Lines of the Trump White House.”

Appeals Court Revives Case Over Pre-1972 Recordings

A federal appeals court on Monday revived a lawsuit accusing CBS Corp and CBS Radio of copyright infringement for playing digitally remastered songs recorded before 1972 by Al Green, the Everly Brothers, Jackie Wilson and others on radio stations and online.

According to Reuters, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Pasadena, California said a lower court judge acted too quickly in saying federal copyright law preempted California state law claims by the plaintiffs, which owned the original analog recordings.

“A digitally remastered sound recording made as a copy of the original analog sound recording will rarely exhibit the necessary originality to qualify for independent copyright protection,” Circuit Judge Richard Linn wrote for a 3-0 panel.

The decision is a victory for owners of older songs, who drew support from the Recording Industry Association of America trade group, and have for many years battled broadcasters in court over royalties.

Some owners have found success in arguing that state laws forbade playing their songs without permission. Recordings before Feb. 15, 1972 are not covered by federal copyright law.

CBS last November split off its CBS Radio business, which merged with Entercom Communications Corp.

A lawyer for the defendants did not immediately respond to requests for comment. Entercom did not immediately respond to similar requests. CBS had no immediate comment.

The plaintiffs ABS Entertainment Inc, Barnaby Records Inc, Brunswick Record Corp and Malaco Inc sued over CBS’s playing of songs they had remastered from their original analog format.

Such remasterings can change songs’ original timbre, sound balance and loudness, but otherwise leave them unedited.

In May 2016, U.S. District Judge Percy Anderson in Los Angeles said CBS, which according to court papers did not use analog recordings, should not pay because the remastered recordings were authorized “derivative works” governed only by federal copyright law.

But Linn, who normally sits on the Federal Circuit appeals court in Washington, D.C., said aural changes resulting from digitally remastering analog recordings generally do not “exhibit the minimum level of originality to be copyrightable.”

22 States Ask Appeals Court To Reinstate 'Net Neutrality' Rules

A group of 22 state attorneys general and the District of Columbia late Monday asked a U.S. appeals court to reinstate the Obama administration’s 2015 landmark net neutrality rules and reject the Trump administration’s efforts to preempt states from imposing their own rules guaranteeing an open internet.

According to Reuters, the states, led by New York Attorney General Barbara Underwood, filed a lawsuit in January after the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) voted in December along party lines to reverse rules that barred internet service providers from blocking or throttling traffic or offering paid fast lanes, also known as paid prioritization.

Several internet companies filed a separate legal challenge on Monday to overturn the FCC ruling, including Mozilla Corp, Vimeo Inc, Etsy Inc, and numerous media and technology advocacy groups.

The FCC handed sweeping new powers to internet providers to recast how Americans use the internet — as long as they disclose any changes. The new rules took effect in early June but major providers have made no changes in internet access.

Ajit Pai
The states argue the FCC reversal will harm consumers.

The states also suggested the FCC failed to identify any “valid authority” for preempting state and local laws that would protect net neutrality.

Governors in six states have signed executive orders on net neutrality, while three states have enacted net neutrality legislation.

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai has repeatedly said he believes the rules will be upheld and will encourage additional investment by providers. A spokesman for Pai did not immediately comment late Monday.

The revised rules were a win for internet service providers, like Comcast Corp, AT&T Inc and Verizon Communications Inc, whose practices faced significant government oversight and FCC investigations under the 2015 order, but the rules were opposed by internet firms like Facebook Inc, Inc and Alphabet Inc.

Twin Cities Radio: KTCZ Returns to AAA Roots As Cities 97.1

iHeartMedia/Minneapolis announced Monday the debut of the new Cities 97.1, Uniquely Twin Cities.

KTCZ Cities 97.1 will broadcast an eclectic mix of Adult Alternative and Hot Adult Contemporary music including songs from artists which the station was instrumental in breaking over the years like Ed Sheeran, Coldplay, and John Mayer.

The station will also include music from a variety of top artists such as Imagine Dragons, Maroon 5, Adele and Weezer. Additional programming will include Minneapolis singer-songwriter Keri Noble weekday mornings from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. and Minneapolis local favorite Paul Fletcher on weekday afternoons from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m.

“We’re connected to the Twin Cities and we care about our community and the music we play,” said Rich Davis, Director of CHR Programming for iHeartMedia’s Western Great Lakes Region and Program Director for KDWB and Cities 97. “Cities 97 was born in 1984 and now reborn in 2018 and we’re thrilled to grow and continually evolve with our listeners and fans.”

KTCZ 97.1 FM (100 Kw) Red=Local Coverage Area
Full Programming Lineup:
  • Keri Noble 6 a.m.-10 a.m.
  • Rich Davis 10 a.m. -2 p.m.
  • Paul Fletcher 2 p.m. -7 p.m.
  • Mollie Kendrick 7 p.m-12 a.m.

Cumulus Media Goes With TTWN For Traffic

Total Traffic & Weather Network  Monday announced a new multi-year partnership for TTWN to be the exclusive provider of traffic content for Cumulus Meida.

In addition to an existing weather content partnership, TTWN will now also provide its award-winning, real-time traffic reports and data to Cumulus Media's 441 radio stations nationwide. Additionally, TTWN’s 24/7 News division will provide news support, including anchored news and reporting services.

Jack Dunkle
“Our affiliates’ success is our top priority,” said Jack Dunkle, Senior Vice President, Affiliate Sales for Total Traffic & Weather Network.

“Our partnership with Cumulus Media brings together two industry leaders to provide radio listeners best-in-class traffic, news and weather information. We appreciate Cumulus Media’s trust in us as a content provider, and are thrilled to continue to grow our long-term partnership.”Total Traffic & Weather Network (TTWN), the leading trusted provider of real-time traffic, weather, news and sports content to television, radio, in-vehicle navigation and mobile devices reaching 98% of American Commuters monthly, today announced a new multi-year partnership for TTWN to be the exclusive provider of traffic content for Cumulus Media.

In addition to an existing weather content partnership, TTWN will now also provide its award-winning, real-time traffic reports and data to Cumulus Media’s 441 radio stations nationwide. Additionally, TTWN’s 24/7 News division will provide news support, including anchored news and reporting services.

“Our affiliates’ success is our top priority,” said Jack Dunkle, Senior Vice President, Affiliate Sales for Total Traffic & Weather Network. “Our partnership with Cumulus Media brings together two industry leaders to provide radio listeners best-in-class traffic, news and weather information. We appreciate Cumulus Media’s trust in us as a content provider, and are thrilled to continue to grow our long-term partnership.”

As for the United States Traffic Network, it has begun to inform employees of plans to wind down its radio traffic services division. According to sources, the company expects to deliver its final radio traffic reports for advertisers this Friday (Aug. 24) and final traffic data to radio affiliates two weeks later on Sept. 7.  Services to the company’s TV clients will continue uninterrupted.

The network’s radio sellers were informed of the latest chapter in the saga of the financially struggling company during a conference call on Monday. Radio sellers were told their last day would be Aug. 3.

Cumulus Media Reports Drop In Net Revenue

Cumulus Media Inc. Monday announced operating results for the three and six months ended June 30, 2018. Highlights:
  • Fresh out of a Chapter 11 reorganization, Cumulus Media (NASDAQ:CMLS) has posted Q2 earnings where revenues and EBITDA declined slightly Y/Y.
  • Net income of $706.1M included an after-tax gain of $671M associated with its emergence from bankruptcy (in a plan that became effective June 4).
  • Key operating performance measures and financial results weren't materially affected by the reorganization, Cumulus says.
  • “In the second quarter, we emerged from Chapter 11 with new and supportive ownership, a billion dollars less debt and results that demonstrate our operational and financial momentum, despite industry challenges and the distractions posed by our Chapter 11 proceedings," says CEO Mary Berner.
Results for the 2018 periods reflect the combined results of the Successor and Predecessor Companies in connection with the Company's emergence from Chapter 11.

For the three months ended June 30, 2018, the Company reported:
  • Net revenue of $285.2 million, down 1.8% from the three months ended June 30, 2017
  • Net income of $706.1 million
  • Adjusted EBITDA of $66.4 million, which was down 1.5% from the three months ended June 30, 2017. 
For the six months ended June 30, 2018, the Company reported:
  • Net revenue of $548.9 million, down 1.0% from the six months ended June 30, 2017
  • Net income of $701.1 million
  • Adjusted EBITDA of $106.6 million, which was up 0.5% from the six months ended June 30, 2017. 
Net income for the three and six months ended June 30, 2018 included after-tax gains associated with the Company's emergence from Chapter 11 of $671.0 million and $641.0 million, respectively.

Mary Berner
Mary Berner, President and Chief Executive Officer of Cumulus Meida said, “In the second quarter, we emerged from Chapter 11 with new and supportive ownership, a billion dollars less debt and results that demonstrate our operational and financial momentum, despite industry challenges and the distractions posed by our Chapter 11 proceedings. Normalizing those results for $4.8 million of write-offs related to United States Traffic Network’s well-publicized financial problems, our Adjusted EBITDA grew in the quarter by 5.5%.”

Berner continued, “Looking forward, we are excited about the potential of our digital products, improved pricing and inventory management across the entire platform and our young but fast-growing podcasting business to supplement the performance of our core business. These growth drivers, combined with our continued focus on operating fundamentals, our reduced debt load, our ability to generate significant free cash flow and our renewed focus on optimization of our portfolio of assets, position us well to build substantial shareholder value in the quarters and years to come.”

Camila Cabello Beats Beyonce, Drake For Top VMA Prizes

Camila Cabello
Cuban-born Camila Cabello beat out heavy hitters Beyonce, Bruno Mars and Drake to take home the two top prizes at the MTV Video Music Awards (VMAs) on Monday, reports Reuters.

Cabello, 21, was chosen artist of the year and won video of the year for her Latin-flavored hit “Havana,” while rapper Cardi B picked up wins for best new artist and song of summer for her dance hit “I Like It” with J Balvin and Bad Bunny.

“I can’t believe this is for me,” said Cabello, who split from girl group Fifth Harmony in late 2016 to launch a solo career.

New York rapper Cardi B, 25, made her first public appearance since giving birth to her first child in July. But the feisty “Bodak Yellow” singer failed to make good on her leading 10 nominations going into the show as fans spread their votes far and wide.

Post Malone
“A couple of months ago people were saying, you’re gambling your career by having a baby,” Cardi B said. “I had a baby ... and now I’m still winning awards.”

The biggest winner of the night was Childish Gambino, the music stage name of actor Donald Glover, who came away with three for his hard-hitting video “This Is America” about black identity and police brutality.

Canadian rapper Drake, one of the most popular artists in terms of sales and streaming, came away empty-handed, as did multiple Grammy winner Bruno Mars.

Other winners of the evening included Post Malone’s “Rockstar” taking the trophy for Song of the Year and Cardi B nabbing Best New Artist. Atlanta star and creator Donald Glover’s music video for “The Is America” snagged Best Video With a Message, Best Choreography, and Best Direction.

Other Highlights Include:
  • The Backstreet Boys performed at the pre-show. The guys – Howie D., Kevin Richardson, Nick Carter, AJ McLean, and Brian Littrell – took over the front of Radio City Music Hall to perform one of their new hits “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart.” Later on in the show, the guys hit the stage to present.
  • Rising star Hayley Kiyoko received the Push artist of the year, beating out SZA, Khalid, Lil Xan and several others. “This validates any queer woman of color that you can follow your dreams,” Kiyoko said in an impromptu interview on the pink carpet.
  • Cardi B kicked off the ceremony by cradling the VMAs signature trophy as if it were her child which led to a wet T shirt performance from Shawn Mendes as well as a Nicki Minajperformance that was very royal to go in line with her album Queen.
  • Tiffany Haddish and Kevin Hart opened the show by reassuring the crowd they could express themselves freely at the show, at least more freely than an NFL player can. “We are live coast-to-coast, people. I’m looking at this like it’s game day,” Hart said. “But do not worry. For this game, you’re allowed to kneel. You can do whatever the hell you want. There’s no old white man who can stop you.” They also had some zingers for people in attendance (“Jersey Shore is back and bigger than ever, which makes sense. Without treatment, that sort of thing will keep flaring up every couple of years.”) – but Hart saved his most pointed jab President Donald Trump. “You never know what’s going to happen at the VMAs,” he said. “Bad language, people run to the bathroom and send out crazy tweets. It’s basically like a typical day at the White House. In your face, Trump! Suck it!”
  • Haddish, meanwhile, mispronounced Camila Cabello’s name. “Y’all know I can’t read that good. I only speak English, and that’s mostly in Ebonics,”she quipped. Haddish then called out Cabello’s old band Fifth Harmony by saying they were at home watching instead of being invited to the show. Nicki Minaj stood up for her Fifth Harmony pal Normani and told Haddish when the rapper stepped on stage to accept an award, “Don’t be coming for Fifth Harmony because Normani is that b*tch!”
  • Travis Scott performed a medley of songs off of his new album Astroworld. Travis was joined by James Blake on stage where the two performed a medley of “Stargazing,” “Stop Trying To Be God,” and “Sicko Mode.”
  • Nicki Minaj performed a medley of her songs “Barbie Dreams” and “Majesty” during the nearly five-minute performance.
  • Panic! at the Disco, fronted lead vocalist Brendon Urie, commanded the crowd with a stellar performance of “High Hopes.” Brendon donned a black and gold floral suit as he opened the song on a rotating platform that descended into the crowd.
  • Ariana Grande performed her current single “God is a Woman” from her album Sweetener. The performance kicked off with a visual of The Last Supper featuring only women. At the end of the performance, Ari‘s mom Joan and her grandma Nonna came on stage.
  • Logic and Ryan Tedder hit the stage together to perform their track “One Day.” During the performance, Logic wore a shirt that read “F**k the Wall.” He was later joined by immigrant families wearing shirts that read “We Are All Human Beings,” and held up candles.
  • Jennifer Lopez was honored with the Video Vanguard Award and delivered a performance of current and past hits to remind us that she’s still Jenny from the Block. After the epic performance, the 49-year-old entertainer returned to the stage to accept the coveted award. After thanking her team and family, Jen gave her gratitude to boyfriend Alex Rodriguez. “And Alex. You’re like my twin soul. We’re like mirror images of each other,” Jen said. “My life is sweeter and better with you in it because you make me realize that every day the sky is not the limit – the universe is infinite, and so is what we can accomplish together with love and trust and understanding. There’s so much more to do – to experience – and there is no one I’d rather do it with. You’re my macho baby and I love you.”
  • Madonna, who recently celebrated her 60th birthday, made an appearance to not only present the award for Video of the Year but to serve as a conduit for an Aretha Franklin tribute. She shared a story of her early days as a struggling singer and dancer on how she was inspired by Franklin and how she “belted” out “Natural Woman” at an audition. She said the point of her story was that her career wouldn’t have happened if it weren’t “for our ‘Lady of Soul’.” “Thank you for empowering all of us,” she added. “Long live the queen.”
Post Malone ended the telecast with a performance with the legendary Aerosmith.
The 2018 MTV Video Music Awards is the second ceremony since MTV changed the “Moon Man” trophy name to the gender neutral “Moon Person.”

The Winners:

Video Of The Year: Camila Cabello ft. Young Thug – “Havana”
Artist Of The Year: Camila Cabello
Song Of The Year: Post Malone ft. 21 Savage – “rockstar”
Best New Artist: Cardi B
Best Collaboration: Jennifer Lopez ft. DJ Khaled & Cardi B – “Dinero”
Push Artist Of The Year: Hayley Kiyoko
Best Pop: Ariana Grande – “No Tears Left to Cry”
Best Hip Hop: Nicki Minaj – “Chun-Li”
Best Latin: J Balvin, Willy William – “Mi Gente”
Best Dance: Avicii ft. Rita Ora – “Lonely Together”
Best Rock: Imagine Dragons – “Whatever It Takes”
Video With A Message: Childish Gambino – “This Is America”
Best Cinematography: The Carters – “Apes**t” – Cinematography by Benoit Debie
Best Direction: Childish Gambino – “This Is America” – Directed by Hiro Murai
Best Art Direction: The Carters – “Apes**t” – Art Direction by Jan Houlevigue
Best Visual Effects: Kendrick Lamar & SZA – “All The Stars” – Visual Effects by Loris Paillier for
Best Choreography: Childish Gambino – “This Is America” – Choreography by Sherrie Silver
Best Editing: N.E.R.D & Rihanna – “Lemon” – Editing by Taylor Ward
Song Of Summer: Cardi B, Bad Bunny & J Balvin – “I Like It”
Michael Jackson Video Vanguard Award: Jennifer Lopez

Madonna’s Aretha Franklin Tribute Gets Backlash

The backlash was swift for Madonna’s rambling, egocentric tribute to Aretha Franklin at the MTV Video Music Awards, with media and Queen-of-Soul fans wondering why she got the gig in the first place.

Dressed in flowing black with grandiose flourishes of African jewelry, Madonna’s send-off came before she presented the video of the year award to Camila Cabello on Monday night. She spoke at length about her own start in the business and her own career before thanking Franklin for “empowering all of us. R.E.S.P.E.C.T.”

The Eagles Greatest Hits New All-time Seller

The Eagles’ greatest hits compilation featuring rock classics such as “Take It Easy” and “Witchy Woman” has dethroned Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” as the top-selling album of all time, according to Reuters citing industry data released on Monday.

The album, called “Their Greatest Hits 1971-1975,” has racked up sales or streams of more than 38 million since its release in February 1976, the Recording Industry Association of America said.

That knocked Jackson’s 1982 pop sensation, “Thriller,” with more than 33 million sales or streams, to second place. The No. 3 slot belongs to another Eagles album, “Hotel California,” at 26 million.

The Eagles formed in Los Angeles in 1971 and broke up in 1980. In 1994, they reunited with original band members Don Henley and Glenn Frey.

Frey died in 2016, but the band still tours with members who include Henley, Frey’s son Deacon, and country star Vince Gill.

Indy/Houston Radio: Charese Fruge Named CHR PD/Format Captain

Urban One has announced Charese Frugé as CHR Format Captain and Program Director for both Top 40 WNOW 100.9 RadioNow in Indianapolis and KROI 92.1 RadoNow in Houston. Frugé will be based out of Indianapolis but will be commuting back and forth to Houston.

Charese Fruge
“I’m very excited to be a part of the Radio One Family and to work with such great brands.” FrugĂ© stated. “The leadership and talent in this company is inspiring and I am so thrilled to be working with DJ Riddler again in both markets. Programming in Houston again is bittersweet and Peyton Manning won a Super Bowl for Indy, a fantastic reminder that every day is game day in this business.”

In addition, DJ Riddler has been promoted to Assistant Program Director and Music Director for both WNOW and KROI. It’s a reunion for both who worked together previously at CBS Radio Tp 40 KKHH/Houston.

“I’m thankful for the opportunity that Urban One has given me and I’m excited to be re-united with Charese Fruge.” DJ Riddler tells FMQB. “I’m looking forward to helping strengthen the Radio Now brands in Houston and now in Indianapolis.”

Terri Thomas continues as Operations Manager for the Houston Market and as PD for Urban AC KMJQ (Magic 102.1) and Rhythmic Top 40 KBXX (97.9 The Box).

Denver Radio: KOSI Adds Jenny D to Morning Show

Bonneville International Corporation’s KOSI 101.1 FM Denver has announced the addition of crosstown KWOF-FM morning personality Jenny D to the KOSI 101.1 morning show as a co-host to current personality Sean Henry.

Jenny D
“As a Colorado native, wife, and mother to two young daughters, Jenny is the perfect addition to work alongside Sean, allowing us to create entertaining content that is limiting to a solo host.”

Remarked Lawson. “Her Enthusiasm, energy, personality and character will fit right in with our team,” added Lawson. This marks a return to the cluster as Jenny has worked as an air talent in the past at KYGO-FM.

Bonneville Denver VP/GM, Bob Call, said, “We have had our eye on Jenny ever since she interned with KYGO a decade ago. Listeners adore her as she brings the real life experiences of being a wife and a mom to the radio every morning. Denver is home for Jenny and we are excited she is making the jump up the dial to KOSI.

Jenny D added, “I am so excited to be joining the KOSI family! As someone who grew up here I have always loved the music and spirit of KOSI … now I get to add my crazy energy to an already amazing group of people!”

KOSI 101.1 Fm ( 100 Kw) Red=Local Coverage Area
Jenny joins KOSI after the Labor Day holiday.

Report: The Smart Speaker Race Is Heating Up

Thanks to its head start in the prospering smart speaker market, Amazon stayed on top of the competition in the second quarter of 2018. According to Statista's Felix Richter citing the latest estimates from market research firm Strategy Analytics, the e-commerce giant shipped 4.8 million Echo devices between April and June, edging out its closest competitor Google by 1.6 million units.

Having extended its smart speaker line-up last year, Google gained some ground on Amazon though, growing its market share from 16.1 percent in the second quarter of 2017 to 27.6 percent in Q2 2018. Apple meanwhile failed to break into the top 3 as the company shipped an estimated 700,000 HomePods in the three months ending June 30.

Overall, the smart speaker market continues to grow, with global shipments tripling from 3.9 million units in the second quarter of last year to 11.7 million units in this year's June quarter. The following chart shows that the race for the number one spot in the growing market is gradually heating up, as competitors slowly eat away at Amazon's once dominant lead.