Wednesday, September 19, 2018

R.I.P.: Radio Legend Brother Bill Gable Dead At 69

Bill Gable
A legend in the radio business has died.

Bill Gable, who entertained audiences at stations across North America for 46-years passed away Tuesday evening.  He died suddenly in a Windsor, Ontario hospital from complications of chronic pulmonary obstructive disorder (COPD).

Gable retired in 2014.

He  got his start in radio as a teenager in Allentown, Pennsylvania and went on to work in the biggest markets in North America, including Detroit-Windsor at CKLW (The Big 8) in the 1970s.  “All the American DJs, who were already in radio, they aspired to work there.  To them, that was maybe one of the five best radio jobs in the world that you could get.”

Gable's daughter Lisa posted this on Facebook:

Yesterday 9/18/18 our family said an unexpected good bye to my wonderful, kind, loving and wise Dad, Bill Gable. Our hearts are completely shattered, shocked and broken. My Dad had been battling COPD, coupled with other health issues for sometime but it took a sudden turn. We covet your prayers at this time. We also know Facebook is the only way of communication with many of his beloved friends and colleagues. Memorial arrangements will be communicated by the family once we know those details. I “miss you already” Daddio. I’m so proud and grateful to be your daughter. I love you.

Gable had trouble with COPD off an on and recently had an unrelated operation. That all seemed to go well and he was recovering well…until last night.

Another CKLW personality, Pat Holiday commented:

I’ve only had a handful of super close friends. The kind that are with you through thick and thin, decade after decade, and are a large piece of your life, history, and memories. One of them is Bill Gable. I first met Bill as just kids really, back in 1970 at CKLW. He was the new kid coming up from Washington DC. “Brother Bill”. We immediately hit it off and have been close friends ever since regardless of distance, time, and most of life’s situations. He was one of those guys for me that I knew actually cared about whatever was going on in my life and me for him. You don’t get many of those kinds of friends. I was lucky.

Just last week we had a super long conversation about virtually everything and solved all the world’s problems in one shot. All was good. Tonight, quite a shock, we lost Bill. It’s so odd even writing this. Hard to believe as it’s sinking in.

R.I.P.: CBS News Radio Anchor Dave Barrett

Dave Barrett
CBS News Radio has announced the unexpected death of longtime correspondent and anchor of the World News Roundup Late Edition Dave Barrett has died.

He was 63-years-of-age.

Barrett joined CBS News, Radio in February, 2001.

He anchored hourly newscasts, updates, Spectrum newsbriefs and was3-time winner of the Edward R. Murrow Award.

He won in 2015 for Feature Reporting, for a piece on the 200-year anniversary of the Star Spangled Banner. In 2011, he won a Murrow for Use of Sound, for his story on Kids' Digital Day. In 1998, Barrett won his first Edward R. Murrow Award for Sports Reporting, for a profile on Tiger Woods.

From 1998-2001, Barrett was News Director for the Fox News Radio Network. Prior to that, he spent a storied 15 years at ABC Radio News, where he covered everything from political conventions and hurricanes to the Olympics. Barrett has been to the Persian Gulf region twice. He was based in Bahrain during Operation Earnest Will (1988), where oil tankers transiting the Gulf were escorted to and from Kuwait. He also covered the allied buildup in Saudi Arabia during Operation Desert Shield in 1990.

During 1993 and 1994, Barrett journeyed to ESPN Radio, where he worked as a commentator for several major sporting events, including Super Bowls, the NCAA Final Four, the British Open, Wimbledon, the NBA Finals and the Kentucky Derby. He returned to ABC News in 1994.

In 1981, Barrett ran the Washington, DC bureau of the San Francisco-based Pacific News Service. Before that, he spent several years in Houston as a sports reporter, a talk show host and a disc jockey. While working in Houston, he was the play-by-play announcer for the Central Hockey League's Houston Apollos and a PA announcer for the Astros, the Rockets, the Houston Oilers, the WHA Houston Aeros and the University of Houston.

U-S Senate Passes Music Modernization Act

The U.S. Senate approved the Music Modernization Act on Tuesday, putting the first substantive reform to the nation's music copyright laws on the precipice of becoming law, according to The Tennessean.

Stakeholders representing virtually every corner of the music industry backed the legislation, which received rare bipartisan support from a bitterly partisan Congress. The legislation has been championed by everyone from Paul McCartney to Maren Morris for the promise of improving the licensing system and increasing digital royalty payouts to songwriters.

Before the Music Modernization Act becomes law, a reconciled version of the bill must be approved by the House and then President Donald Trump must sign it. Neither of those actions is viewed as an obstacle by the bill's backers.

The Music Modernization Act creates a new organization to identify the copyright owners for a song's composition and to pay them the digital royalties they are owed when their music is played on Spotify, Apple Music and other streaming services.

The new organization will be run by publishers and songwriters, and the onus for finding copyright owners and paying them will no longer fall to the streaming services. That is why Spotify and the streaming trade association backed the bill. Those companies have been subject to expensive class-action lawsuits and subsequent settlements by songwriters who said their songs were used without proper licenses.

The bill also aims to improve royalty payouts for songwriters by creating a new legal standard that judges can use to set rates. Under the new standard, judges can factor in a song's free market value — including how much a song fetches when placed in a commercial or television show, and how much a record label is paid for a similar license. Those standards should raise streaming rates and therefore increase the paydays for songwriters, who have complained the copyright system is antiquated and unfair.

The bill closes a federal copyright loophole that allowed internet radio companies such as SiriusXM and Pandora to play songs recorded before 1972 without paying royalties to the artists and record labels responsible for those songs. SiriusXM opposed this portion of the bill and late Tuesday afternoon the Nashville Songwriters Association International called out Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-South Carolina, for holding up the bill.

Finally, the Music Modernization Act creates a new digital royalty for producers and engineers. In many cases, those professionals are already receiving royalties after a song is streamed, but the legislation adds the new royalty to the copyright law.

MMA Seen As Beneficial To Radio

Some last-minute horse trading helped to secure the Music Modernization Act’s approval in the Senate, according to Digital Music News citing details shared by SiriusXM.

A late-stage deal assured the company’s support of the bill, potentially easing the objections of certain Senators.

Earlier on Tuesday, the Music Modernization Act passed the Senate in a miraculous ‘hotline’ vote, a mechanism that bypasses traditional Senate floor debate.  The fast-tracking move is designed to quickly shuttle non-controversial bills to a vote.

According to an email sent Tuesday night to Digital Music News by executives at SiriusXM, the satellite radio giant was offered a number of key concessions to win its approval.

That includes a preservation of its existing non-interactive streaming radio rate, with an extension granted until 2027.  That’s a five-year extension, and allows Sirius to avoid a lengthy court battle over a recent increase.

Additionally, Sirius secured a guarantee that its recorded royalty payments for pre-1972 songs would be shared 50% with the artists in question.  Previously, no such guarantee existed, raising concerns at Sirius that labels were hoarding the money.

Greg Maffei
That ‘concession’ is a bit ironic, given that mega-stars like Paul McCartney, Katy Perry, and Max Martin threatened to  ‘boycott’ Sirius if they didn’t relent.  But even prior to the last-second deal, Sirius had been fighting for language guaranteeing the 50% payout to artists.

Unfortunately for Sirius, that means that traditional radio stations will continue to enjoy huge exemptions, and a major financial advantage over its satellite rivals.  But maybe that’s a fight for another time, and Sirius obviously got enough to move forward.

Greg Maffei, president and CEO of Sirius parent Liberty Media, heralded the new deal.  “We are pleased to join with the music community in sponsoring amendments that protect artists in this legislation,” Maffei offered.

“It is important that the music industry move forward so that artists can showcase their work throughout the United States.”

Both Mitch Glazier, president of the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), and David Israelite, CEO of the National Music Publishers’ Association (NMPA), affirmed their solidarity with Sirius moving forward.

The NAB released the following statement from President and CEO Gordon Smith:

"NAB applauds Senate passage of the Orrin G. Hatch Music Modernization Act. Naming this critical legislation after Senator Hatch is a fitting tribute to his tireless efforts to improve the lives of songwriters. NAB appreciates the hard work of Senators Hatch, Whitehouse, Alexander and Coons, Chairman Grassley and Ranking Member Feinstein in producing a compromise bill that will benefit songwriters, legacy recording artists, producers, digital streaming services, and music listeners.

"We are particularly supportive of a provision added to the Senate bill ensuring enhanced congressional review of any DOJ changes to ASCAP and BMI consent decrees. These decrees are essential to a functioning music marketplace, and any action to terminate them will now be preceded by appropriate Congressional oversight to protect the interests of songwriters, licensees, and consumers of music."

Appeals Court Upholds Webcaster Royalty Rates

The D.C. Circuit on Tuesday refused to alter a ruling by the Copyright Royalty Board that set how much streaming services like Pandora Radio must pay for music until 2020, rejecting the argument that the board had used improper benchmarks from the private market.

The appeals court affirmed the CRB’s 2015 decision to use voluntary licensing agreements that Pandora and iHeartRadio struck with copyright owners when it set the rates from 2016 to 2020.

Those statutory rates are paid by non-interactive streaming radio providers, including Pandora, SiriusXM Satellite Radio, and online radio stations, among others

The ‘Copyright Royalty Board’ sets the statutory rates for non-interactive streams, which are typically funneled through SoundExchange.  That process is repeated every five years, and decisions can be appealed.

The CRB is appointed by the Librarian of Congress, and its determinations are sent to the Register of Copyrights for legal review.  Once approved, they are published by the Librarian of Congress in the Federal Register, and subject to review by the U.S. Court of Appeals.

For that reason, SoundExchange was an appellate in this case, arguing for higher rates.

According to Digital Music News, the companies paying these rates are happy with the outcome.  That includes traditional radio broadcasters, as represented by the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB).

“NAB is delighted by the D.C. Circuit’s decision to uphold the streaming rates for broadcasters set by the Copyright Royalty Board,” the group emailed Digital Music News this morning.

TV Ratings Poor For the Emmy Awards

Television’s biggest night wasn’t that big. The Emmy Awards drew a record-low audience of just under 10.2 million people, down 11 percent from the past two years, according to the Associated Press citing Nielsen data.

The show reached virtually identical audiences of 11.4 million each of the last two years, the Nielsen company said.

The ratings decline continues a troubling trend for televised awards shows. The Oscars audience this year was down 19 percent from 2017 and the Grammys were down 23 percent.

The further fragmentation of television undoubtedly plays a role in audience interest levels. When “Frasier” was winning awards in the 1990s, the comedy was regularly seen in nearly 20 million homes. Streamed shows like “Mrs. Maisel” are far less popular and, in fact, it’s still difficult to get precise numbers about how many people watch them.

Three times in the 1990s, the audience for the Emmy Awards exceeded 20 million people.

Otherwise, football dominated the television ratings last week. Five of the 10 most-watched shows were football games, and two others were football pregame shows, Nielsen said.

Ratings for the NFL’s first 13 telecasts this season are holding their own against last year’s running tally — despite the lowest Week 2 rating for “Monday Night Football” since the game started airing on cable in 2006.

The 119.7 rating points amassed by the NFL so far this season are only 0.2 percent off the 119.9 rating points racked up during the first 13 NFL telecasts last year.

This week’s “MNF” had the Seattle Seahawks bowing to the Chicago Bears in a game that drew an overnight rating of 8.2 — a new low that replaced the 8.3 rating notched by the Chicago Bears and the Philadelphia Eagles in 2016.

NBC won the week in prime-time, averaging 6.7 million viewers last week. CBS had 4.8 million viewers, ABC had 4 million, Fox had 2.3 million, Univision had 1.4 million, ION Television had 1.33 million, Telemundo had 1.31 million and the CW had 740,000.

ESPN was the week’s most popular cable network, averaging 2.65 million viewers in prime time. Fox News Channel had 2.42 million, MSNBC had 2.13 million, HGTV had 1.35 million and USA had 1.34 million.

ABC’s “World News Tonight” topped the evening newscasts with an average of 8.8 million viewers. NBC’s “Nightly News” was second with 8.3 million and the “CBS Evening News” had 6 million viewers.

ABC’s Good Morning America was the most-watched weekday morning show yet again, averaging nearly 4.3 million total viewers for the week of Sept. 10, according to TV Newser.

GMA attracted its largest weekly audience in 5 months, while posting its strongest numbers in the key A25-54 demo in over 3 months.

That said, the program was -1 percent in total viewers, and down even more in the demo (-12 percent) vs. the same week in 2017.

NBC’s Today show was the No. 1 weekday morning show in the key A25-54 demo for the 142nd straight week, its best streak in over six years.  Today posted its best total viewer and A25-54 delivery since March, and delivered year-over-year growth in total viewers (+2 percent), the latter a feat none of the morning shows accomplish very often.

Radio Drives Tune-In for TV

The latest Westwood One blog post shares the results from a major cable network’s advertising campaign that used AM/FM radio to help launch the returning season of a scripted drama series.

Their media plan also included paid TV and promos running on their network and co-owned networks. Westwood One retained Nielsen to study how the combination of AM/FM radio and TV helped drive tune-in for the premiere.

This was one of the first TV tune-in ROI studies to examine both TV and AM/FM radio.
  • AM/FM radio accounted for a small percentage of the media budget but generated significant impressions and incremental reach: Although AM/FM radio only represented 5% of paid media, it delivered 20% of total campaign impressions.
  • With amplified frequency, AM/FM radio drove tune-in conversion: The more frequently consumers were exposed to tune-in ads, the greater the conversion to viewing the premiere. Tune-in conversion is especially high among consumers who are exposed to ads six or more times.
  • Compared to TV, AM/FM radio delivered a much younger audience: TV’s audience skews older than AM/FM radio’s audience. 70% of AM/FM radio impressions came from 18-54 year olds. Conversely, nearly half of all the TV impressions were from 55+.
  • AM/FM radio is the exceptionally efficient media choice: From a cost standpoint, AM/FM radio’s reach and impressions were achieved much more efficiently. AM/FM radio is only 20% of TV’S CPM and cost per thousand net reach.
  • TV tune-in best practice: Utilize 125-150 GRPs of network radio to efficiently optimize a tune-in campaign with incremental reach and amplified frequency.

Charlotte Radio: WEND Adds Maria Palmer As Host, MD

Maria Palmer
iHeartMedia/Charlotte has announced that Maria Palmer has been named Music Director for iHeartMedia Charlotte and On-Air Host for Alternative WEND 106.5 FM The END.

As Music Director Palmer will assist with the day-to-day operations of the station’s music programming, including managing relationships with record label partners and scheduling daily music logs. Palmer will also lead WEND’s social media accounts where she’ll regularly update and engage with listeners on multiple social platforms. As On-Air Host for 106.5 The END, Palmer will broadcast weekdays from 7 p.m. to midnight.

She will report to Chuck ‘DZL’ Thompson, Program Director for iHeartMedia Charlotte.

“I can’t wait for the people of Charlotte to hear Palmer on 106.5 The END,” said DZL. “She has a rare blend of creativity, humor, passion and drive, but also possesses the administrative and organizational skills needed to assist in running the day-to-day operations of the programming department. Palmer is definitely one to watch and we couldn’t be more excited to add her to the iHeart and WEND family.”

WEND 106.5 FM (84 Kw) Red=Local 60 dBU Coverage Area
Palmer joins the Charlotte Market from Washington, DC, where she began her radio career as the swing shift, fill-in and weekend talent on WWDC and WMZQ.

“I am absolutely thrilled to be joining the team at WEND and cannot wait to discover everything Queen City has to offer,” said Palmer. “I look forward to connecting on-air and online with my listeners, while simultaneously growing and expanding my skills behind the scenes as Music Director. I am very enthusiastic to dive headfirst into my duties and am privileged to be a part of such a strong family at iHeartMedia Charlotte.”

K-C Radio: KRBZ Adds Jordin Silver For Mornings

Entercom has announced the addition of Jordin Silver to Alternative KRBZ 96.5 The Buzz in Kansas City as host of “Mornings with Jordin Silver and Friends,” effective September 24.

Silver will be joined by station on-air personalities Danny Boi and Mark weekdays from 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. ET.

“We’re truly excited about the addition of Jordin to our morning show,” said Dave Alpert, Regional President and Market Manager, Entercom Kansas City. “Pairing her with Buzz morning vets Danny Boi and Mark will provide our listeners with a fresh show to start their day.”

“Lazlo [Program Director and on-air host for 96.5 The Buzz] gave me advice during my first aircheck that has defined my entire career: ‘Make ‘em feel, or don’t turn on the mic at all,’” said Silver. “That’s exactly what we’re going to do at 96.5 The Buzz. The team already feels like family and I can’t wait to explore the great Kansas City.”

KRBZ 96.5 FM (100 Kw) Red=Local 60 dBU Coverage Area
Silver has 12 years of broadcast experience, which includes on-air roles at sister station 107.7 The End (KNDD-FM) in Seattle from 2006 to 2010. She has also held on-air roles for ALT 98.7 in Los Angeles and ALT 105.7, Power 96.1 and Project 96.1 in Atlanta.

Indy Radio: WTTS GM Geoff Vargo Sets Retirement

Geoff Vargo
Following a remarkable 37-year run with parent company Sarkes Tarzian, Inc., AAA WTTS 92.3 FM Indianapolis President/General Manager Geoff Vargo will be retiring at the end of the year.

WTTS Program Director Brad Holtz will be moving into the GM role effective January 1, 2019.

As part of the transition process, WTTS APD/MD Laura Duncan has been named WTTS PD, effective immediately. She will also serve as PD of News/Talk sister station WGCL Bloomington, and will transition into the role of PD for WAJI HD-2 Fort Wayne by the end of the year. WTTS has launched an immediate search for an on-air Music Director.

Brad Holtz
A 21-year veteran of Indianapolis radio, Brad Holtz started his career in programming and promotion roles with Emmis Communications. He has programmed WTTS since 2002, adding WGCL and WAJI-HD2 duties over the past several years.

He was named Station Manger in May 2018.

Laura Duncan has served as MD since 2004, winning Music Director of the Year accolades on multiple occasions. She was also been heard on the late KPRI/San Diego.

A 30-year veteran programmer and air personality, Laura will continue to be heard in afternoon drive on WTTS.

Of the transition, Holtz remarked “As I move into a new role in my career, I’m delighted that Laura Duncan will take over the programming reigns at WTTS. As our APD/MD for the past 14 years, Laura has set herself apart as one of the most dedicated and passionate in our business. She’ll be an outstanding programmer at WTTS.”

WTTS 92.3 FM (37 Kw) Red=Local 60dBu Coverage Area

Corus Snags 'Night Time' Podcast For Radio

The popular Canadian mystery podcast Nighttime has joined Corus Entertainment’s Curiouscast podcast network in a first-of-its-kind partnership. The deal sees the podcast – which has gained more than 5 million downloads since debuting in 2016 – expand its reach by launching onto select Corus-owned Global News Radio AM stations across the country this October; flipping the traditional content model by becoming the first show originating in the podcast medium to broadcast nationally via commercial radio in Canada.

Nighttime is an award-winning audio documentary series covering unique stories from across Canada; hosted and produced by creator Jordan Bonaparte. Topics range from true crime and mysteries to the paranormal or the plain weird. The series has garnered significant buzz – most notably for its episodes investigating the mysterious 2012 disappearance of Emma Fillipoff, a Canadian woman, in B.C.

Jordan Bonaparte
“We’re thrilled to welcome Nighttime to the Curiouscast network and to be working with Jordan,” said Chris “Dunner” Duncombe, Director of Streaming and Podcasting for Corus Entertainment. “Bringing the Nighttime podcast into our network and to the air on our news talk stations will give Canadian radio listeners the opportunity to enjoy what avid podcast listeners have for the past few years.”

Innately curious with a passion for investigation, Sydney, Nova Scotia native Bonaparte lives in Halifax. Nighttime is aptly named, as having to balance time between a career in the insurance industry and a young family, Bonaparte records the podcast in his basement studio after putting his son to sleep – at night time.

“As an independent journalist working in new media, the quest for legitimacy is an uphill and often dangerous battle,” said Bonaparte. “With Nighttime now a member of Corus' Curiouscast network I've found a partner that provides me with the resources of a professional production, and allows Nighttime to expand its reach to listeners of traditional media across Canada.”

Corus Entertainment’s Curiouscast podcast network launched earlier this year and is home to internationally recognized brands with diverse audio storytelling, including the #1 music podcast in Canada on Apple Podcasts, The Ongoing History of New Music, and Global News’ This Is Why.

Nighttime will debut on radio across Canada the week of October 22, 2018 on Corus-owned Global News Radio AM stations: CKNW (Vancouver), CHQR (Calgary), CHED (Edmonton), CJOB (Winnipeg), CFPL (London), CHML (Hamilton) and 640 Toronto. Nighttime will continue to release new episodes – which, alongside its back-catalogue – will be available on all major podcast platforms under the Curiouscast umbrella.

Subscribe to get every episode of Nighttime on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you find your favourite podcasts. Listen now.

Trish Regan To Go Primetime On FOX Business

Fox Business Network will debut a new primetime lineup starting on Oct. 15 that will see host Trish Regan moved from afternoons to 8 p.m. ET, according to a Tuesday announcement.

Regan, a former CNBC and Bloomberg host and reporter, will host a new program titled "Trish Regan Primetime."

“As we mark our 11th year on the air and continued dominance over rival CNBC during Business Day, we are excited to extend our live programming through 10PM, ensuring all of our viewers get the most robust and comprehensive look at how the political economy affects their everyday lives," said Brian Jones, president of the network.

According to The Hill, the program "will feature Regan as she expands upon the leading headlines of the day and their economic impact on the country. Additionally, each night Regan will be joined by a rotating lineup of industry experts and business titans to explore how the policy set forth by Washington affect the markets, economy and personal finance," according to the network.

Charles Payne's "Making Money" will move from 6 p.m. ET to Regan's old spot at 2:00 p.m.

"The Evening Edit with Elizabeth MacDonald" will fill Payne's timeslot at 6:00 p.m. ET, while "Bulls and Bears with David Asman" will be featured in the 5 p.m. slot.

Connell McShane will take Asman's old co-hosting spot on "After the Bell" with Melissa Francis at 4 p.m.

“We have an incredible roster of expertise across both our daytime and primetime lineup and this new schedule will ensure our viewers get the best, most experienced analysis across the critical business and post-market hours," Jones added. "Charles’ keen eye for spotting market moves along with Connell and David’s seasoned backgrounds, will further enhance our business coverage, honing in on the critical news that will impact Americans most.”

Fox Business Network topped rival CNBC in the race for total viewers in business television for the 14th consecutive month in August, according to Nielsen Media Research as CNBC held on to a slim lead in the key 25-54 demographic.

Five Finalists Advance To Next2Rock 2018

With more than 1,600 entries received from across the U.S., Cumulus Media has  announced the five Rock artists selected as finalists for its annual neXt2rock competition — a national and local grassroots search for the nation’s newest rock star. The winner of this four-month-long competition will receive a record deal with Big Machine/John Varvatos Records, as well as substantial exposure, commensurate with a major label release, on Cumulus Radio stations nationwide.

The finale event will take place on October 4, 8 – 11 pm PT, at The Roxy Theatre in Los Angeles. Music personality and longtime radio and TV host Matt Pinfield will host the evening’s festivities, while Los Angeles rock band and fan favorite, Dorothy, will headline the event.

The five national finalists, selected by a panel of Rock radio professionals, are:
  • Friday Pilots Club representing Chicago, IL (WKQX) 
  • The Zealots representing Des Moines, IA (KGGO)
  • Black Rock Revival representing Memphis, TN (WXMX)
  • No Resolve representing Saginaw, MI (WILZ & WKQZ)
  • Late Night Savior representing Salt Lake City, UT (KBER & KHTB)
These five emerging artists will be judged in the finale by Rock music luminaries and industry professionals, including: Big Machine Label Group President & CEO Scott Borchetta; fashion designer and record label head John Varvatos; musician, songwriter and producer Desmond Child; Korn frontman Jonathan Davis, and Fozzy frontman, actor and wrestler Chris Jericho.

Mike McVay, Executive Vice President, Content & Programming for CUMULUS MEDIA, said: “This competition is all about the talent who will deliver the future sound of Rock. Every artist who entered this year’s neXt2rock competition is incredibly gifted and we, as a company, are extremely excited to see who will be named the next Rock superstar.”

Across radio, one out of every three (33%) Americans listens to rock music weekly. The rising popularity of the rock genre can be attributed to a younger audience coming to the format, with Millennials making up more than 30% of weekly listeners. (Source:  Nielsen Audio Fall 2017)

Cumulus Media reaches over 245 million listeners weekly, and is home to some of radio's most iconic rock stations, including KLOS, KQRS, WLUP, KATT, WGRF and KSAN.

L-A Radio: NHL Kings, iHM Partner For Streaming

The NHL Los Angeles Kings and iHeartMedia Los Angeles have announced that as part of a new and innovative digital partnership, all Kings games – including preseason, regular season and postseason contests – will now stream live on the new official LA Kings Audio Network, a custom station available on iHeartRadio.

Coverage on iHeartRadio will also include the broadcast’s 30-minute pregame show. Additionally, iHeartRadio will feature Kings Talk, the club’s popular call-in radio show, which will stream live after most regular season and postseason home games inside the Impact Sports Bar & Grill inside STAPLES Center.

The LA Kings Audio Network will also be the only place to hear the additional online Kings content plus replays of each game, and as part of the agreement, iHeartRadio will feature exclusive Kings audio content for listeners.

Said Kings President and Hockey Hall of Famer Luc Robitaille: “Our streams will continue to not only serve our fans in a traditional sense but the LA Kings Audio Network will also feature additional content that our fans will enjoy listening to. With iHeartRadio’s incredible audience reach, this is indeed a special day in the broadcast history of our hockey club. We are looking forward to all the new opportunities iHeartMedia helps to provide and we look forward to working closely with our new partners who not only share our vision but will play a key role in implementing our vision.”

“We are also very excited to get back in to the audio game with the LA Kings and establishing the LA Kings Audio Network on iHeartRadio is the first step,” said Don Martin, Senior Vice President of Sports for iHeartMedia Los Angeles. “Kings fans will now be able to get content including the live game stream, repeats of the games, interviews, podcasts and other exclusive content on iHeartRadio. It’s as easy as downloading the free iHeartRadio app today!”

Calling the action for Kings games on the LA Kings Audio Network will be Kings Radio Play-by-Play Announcer Nick Nickson, who this year is in his 38th season calling Kings games, and Kings Radio Analyst Daryl Evans, now in his 20th season in that role.

In addition to today’s announcement with iHeartMedia, the Kings have extended their relationship with Skyview Networks to remain the official audio solutions partner of the Kings. The Kings will utilize Skyview Networks’ popular AdView software to manage and control all advertising as part of each club broadcast. AdView is a powerful application developed specifically for play-by-play sports inventory management.

St. Louis Radio: 101 ESPN To Host 2nd Annual 'Buds & Bourbon'

After an extremely successful inaugural year, Hubbard Radio St. Louis - owner and operator of WXOS 101 ESPN has announce the return of Buds & Bourbon, presented by American Standard, on Thursday, November 8, 2018 from 6pm – 9pm. The event will be hosted at RYSE Nightclub at AMERISTAR Casino Resort Spa in St. Charles, Missouri.

Supported by Heaven Hill and Southern Glazers Wine & Spirits, attendees will have the opportunity to sample the finest bourbons from distilleries such as McKenna Henry, Rittenhouse Rye, Bernheim, and more.

The event will also feature heavy hor d’ourves, LIVE music from The Tommy Halloran Trio, a variety of interactive experiences, and will be hosted by the sports talent of 101 ESPN.

New in 2018 -  attendees can purchase a “Higher Standard” ticket for $50, which includes early access to the event and a special bourbon tasting, courtesy of Heaven Hill.

Tickets are available for $35. All-inclusive tickets include access to bourbon samples, a complimentary cigar, and commemorative glass. All attendees must be 21 or older.

Entercom Launches 'Mooch & The Mrs.' Podcast

Entercom has announced a partnership with former White House Director of Communications Anthony Scaramucci and his wife, Deidre. As part of the agreement,, the exclusive digital home for all Entercom content across the company’s robust portfolio of 235 radio stations, will launch “Mooch and the Mrs.” Exclusive first access to the podcast will be available to listeners nationwide on the app.

The new weekly podcast, available at, will feature the couple discussing the world we live in from opposite sides of the political spectrum, while offering an intimate look into the strength of their marriage.

“Anthony Scaramucci’s first-hand political experience from his time in the White House, combined with his and Deidre’s unique points of view, will provide listeners with a compelling podcast experience,” said Pam Russo, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Entercom. “We’re committed to providing a forum for diverse points of view and look forward to hearing Anthony’s and Deidre’s differing perspectives on the political landscape, through the unique lens of their personal relationship.”

“ provides a broad national platform for a wide range of conversations about American politics and American life,” said Scaramucci. “My first-hand experience and insights about the president, the White House and what happens inside gives added context to what we hope will be an engaging review of the events of the week.”

Anthony Scaramucci is a frequent commentator on current events. He and Deidre have previous on-air experience together, having joined programming on KNX 1070 News Radio (KNX-AM) in Los Angeles. Based on feedback and interest in these appearances, it’s clear that there is an appetite for a candid and refreshing look inside how this couple manages differing perspectives within their relationship.

PromoSuite, SoCast Unveil New Promotions Tool

PromoSuite and SoCast have announced a new integration that drastically improves the speed and accuracy of website and app updates for on-air contesting, contest rules, storm closing information, and event listings. With this new integration, information entered into PromoSuite Next -- PromoSuite’s cloud-based promotions management system -- is instantly and automatically updated on radio station websites and apps within SoCast’s digital platform.

“Our mission at SoCast is to make every aspect of digital easy and profitable for radio broadcasters,” said Elliott Hurst, CEO of SoCast.

“PromoSuite is the leader in radio promotions tools, and we’re excited about bringing the integration of our web and mobile platforms to their widely used promotions management system. We feel a natural camaraderie with Rocco and his team and look forward to future technical integrations and new developments down the road.”

“Promotions Directors are among the most overworked people in radio,” noted Rocco Macri, CEO of PromoSuite.

“As a former Marketing Director myself, I know that the to-do list is never-ending and things like updating digital content can often get pushed to the side. SoCast understands what radio needs and their digital platforms are built specifically for radio, making them the perfect partner for PromoSuite. Now, with this advanced integration our of two systems, station staff can enter content in just one place—PromoSuite Next—and have it automatically updated on two additional digital platforms—web and mobile!”

This new integration is live now on SoCast’s platform and free for any radio stations using both PromoSuite Next and SoCast. For more information about setting up this integration or signing up for either system, contact Rachel Field from PromoSuite at 212-509-1200 x205 or Eric Eisen from SoCast at 416-635-6678 x223.

NYC Radio: WNSH Hosts Carrie Underwood For Live Event

Carrie Underwood last week performed at the WNSH  NASH FM 94.7 "Up Close and Country" live event at the Opry City Stage in Times Square. The private launch event for Underwood's new album, Cry Pretty, was broadcast on all 82 of Cumulus Media's NASH Country radio stations across the U.S.

Pictured are, left to right: 
John Foxx, Program Director, NASH FM 94.7 New York
Chris Schuler, Director, Promotion and Radio Marketing, Universal Music Group, Nashville
Annie Sandor, Director Northeast Promotions, Capitol Records Nashville
Mike Allan, Assistant Program Director, NASH FM 94.7 New York
Carrie Underwood
Charlie Cook, VP/Country Format, Cumulus Media
Katie Neal, Midday Host, NASH FM 94.7 New York
Bobby Young, VP, Promotion, Universal Music Group

September 19 Radio History

➦In 1921..WBZ radio, which now broadcasts at 1030 kHz AM and is the oldest surviving commercial radio station in New England, began broadcasting from Springfield, MA.

The station has long been one of the highest-rated stations in the Boston area, and covers much of the eastern United States and Canada at night with its 50,000-watt clear-channel signal from its transmitter location in Hull, Massachusetts, which has been used by the station since 1940. The transmitter is a two tower directional array where each tower is 160 meters (520 ft) tall. The signal is intentionally directionalized from their coastal location for maximum power transmitted into the continental United States, giving WBZ outstanding multi-state coverage after sunset.

WBZ's initial license, for operation in Springfield, was issued by the Department of Commerce to the Westinghouse Electric & Manufacturing Company on September 15, 1921; it was the first license to specify broadcasts on 360 meters (833 kilohertz), and was subsequently deemed to be the first license for a commercial broadcast station. However, other stations, such as WWJ in Detroit, 1XE/WGI in Medford Hillside, and sister station KDKA in Pittsburgh, were already broadcasting under different license classifications.

Original Studio on Page Blvd.
The station's original transmitter and studios were located at the Westinghouse factory on Page Boulevard in East Springfield. However, WBZ's inaugural program, on September 19, 1921, was a remote broadcast from the Eastern States Exposition in West Springfield.

The original format was general entertainment and information, which included live music (often classical music and opera), sports, farm reports, special events, and public affairs programming. Despite WBZ being housed in Springfield, it somewhat difficult to attract top-flight artists to the station,  leading Westinghouse to open a studio at the Hotel Brunswick in Boston on February 24, 1924.  WBZ also expanded its news programming via a partnership with the Boston Herald and Traveler.  It also carried a considerable amount of sports broadcasts, including Boston Bruins hockey, Boston Braves baseball, and Harvard Crimson football.

Circa 1932
Because of its comparatively wide reach, the station often referred to itself as "WBZ, New England" as opposed to associating itself solely with Springfield or Boston. However, even after several power boosts (the station broadcast at a power of 100 watts in 1921, but was using 2,000 watts in April 1925, the station still had some trouble reaching Boston, leading Westinghouse to sign on WBZA, a 250-watt station at 1240 kHz, on August 20, 1925.  Efforts were soon made to operate WBZA as a synchronous repeater of WBZ, by then at 900 kHz; this process was difficult, as the two transmitters often interfered with each other even in Boston, and WBZA went back and forth between the two frequencies for nearly a year before finally going to full-time synchronous operation in June 1926.

WBZ also continued to boost the power of its primary East Springfield transmitter; it was granted permission to operate with 5,000 watts on March 31, 1926, and by 1927 it was operating with 15,000 watts. Meanwhile, a combination of WBZ's growth and continued difficulties with the WBZA signal led the station to move its Boston studio to the Statler Hotel (now the Boston Park Plaza Hotel & Towers) on June 1, 1927 and activate a new WBZA transmitter on June 9.  The Federal Radio Commission (FRC) moved WBZ and WBZA to 990 kHz on November 11, 1928.

Amidst the technical changes, WBZ also began engaging in network activities. By 1925, it often shared programs with WJZ in New York City (which Westinghouse had also started in 1921, but sold to the Radio Corporation of America two years later), and a WBZ special commemorating the 150th anniversary of Paul Revere's "Midnight Ride" was also fed to WRC in Washington, D.C. and WGY in Schenectady, New York. This paved the way for the station to become a charter affiliate of the National Broadcasting Company (NBC) on November 15, 1926, carrying the WJZ-originated NBC Blue Network beginning on January 1, 1927.

➦In 1932...the soap opera “Just Plain Bill” was first heard as an early evening quarter-hour on a regional CBS network from Chicago.

It was “The real life story of people just like people we all know.”  Stories centred around the town barber (just plain) Bill Davidson and his daughter, Nancy, who lived in (just plain) Hartville.  The broadcast moved to New York at the end of the year, and to NBC daytime in 1935, where it continued daily for another 20 years.

➦In 1955...Bill Cullen starts at WRCA 660 AM.

Bill Cullen
Cullen's broadcasting career began in Pittsburgh at WWSW radio, where he worked as a disc jockey and play-by-play announcer or color commentator for Pittsburgh Steelers and Pittsburgh Hornets games. In 1943, Cullen left WWSW to briefly work at rival station KDKA before leaving Pittsburgh a year later to try his luck in New York. A week after arriving in New York he was hired as a staff announcer at CBS. To supplement his then-meager income, he became a freelance joke writer for some of the top radio stars of the day including Arthur Godfrey, Danny Kaye, and Jack Benny; he also worked as a staff writer for the Easy Aces radio show.

His first venture into game shows was in 1945 when he was hired as announcer for a radio quiz called Give And Take.  Between 1946 and 1953 he also worked as announcer for various other local and network shows, including the radio version of Mark Goodson and Bill Todman's first game show, Winner Take All, hosted by Ward Wilson; Cullen took over as host four months later when Wilson left.

After a brief stint at WNEW in 1951 he later hosted a popular morning show at WRCA radio from 1955 to 1961.  His last regular radio job was as one of the hosts of NBC Radio's Monitor from 1971 to 1973.

➦In 1970...Ed Baer does last show at WMCA 570 AM  NYC.

Aircheck from 1964 (note: Video Slate in incorrect..the year is 1964)

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Terrestrial Radio Remains Tops For Music Listening, But...

In Audio Monitor US 2018, a joint study on music habits in the US, Music Biz and AudienceNet have found most Americans still listen to more music on the radio.  Both organizations surveyed 3,000 consumers in the US aged 16 and above.

On average, Americans spend 151 minutes each day listening to music, reports Digital Music News.  Breaking down total music listening share by medium, broadcast radio had a 31% share, down 3% over last year.  On-demand streaming made up 27%, up just 1% from 2017.  Downloaded music had a 10% total listening share, down 3% over last year, but down only 2% over 2016.

‘Other internet radio’ (Pandora, etc) had a 12% share, up 2% over the past 2 years.  Satellite radio had a 7% total listening share, up 1% over the past 2 years.  And, a growing number of Americans (5%) now spent more time streaming AM/FM radio stations online, up 2% over last year.

On average, older audiences spent the majority of their time listening to music on the radio.

Broadcast radio had the largest share among those aged 45-54 (42%), 55-64 (45%), and 65 and up (45%).  Radio had a significantly lower share among younger people – 30% among 35-44 year olds, and a 27% share among 25-34 year olds.

In a warning sign for the medium, just 12% of groups aged 16-19 and 20-24 reported listening to music on the radio.

Unsurprisingly, on-demand streaming music had the lowest amount of listening time among older age groups.

Just 8% of people aged 65 and older spent time streaming music.  That number rose to 11% among those aged 55-64, and 15% among 45-54 year olds.  24% of 35-44 year olds spent time listening to on-demand streaming music platforms.

Music Biz and AudienceNet also found on-demand streaming music has become the new standard among younger generations.

33% of 25-34 year olds listened to streaming music platforms.  Among 20-24 year olds, on-demand streaming music had a 49% share.  And, a whopping 60% of 16-19 year olds dedicated the majority of their listening time to on-demand streaming.

So, where do people enjoy streaming music from?

Unsurprisingly, with a 38% share, YouTube emerged as the preferred on-demand streaming platform.  Spotify came in second with 28%.  Apple Music and Amazon Prime Music had a 9% and 10% average share, respectively.

Among those aged 65 and over that listened to on-demand streaming, 40% used YouTube.  Spotify had a 13% share.  Amazingly, a whopping 24% reported using Amazon Prime Music.  Only 5% used Apple Music.  Amazon Music Unlimited and Google Play Music had a 4% and 2% share, respectively.  Other net platforms – SoundCloud, Deezer, TIDAL, Napster – had an 11% share.

Interestingly, among younger audiences aged 16-24, at 38%, YouTube tied with Spotify as the preferred on-demand listening.

Report: Music Modernization Act Passage On The Brink

U-S Sen. Lamar Alexander (Tennessee) believes the Music Modernization Act is on the brink of clearing the Senate and heading to President Donald Trump's desk to be signed into law.

According to The Tennessean, the act would be the first major overhaul of the nation's music copyright laws in two decades. Its advocates say the legislation would improve paydays for songwriters by creating a new, more favorable standard for how digital royalty rates are set for services like Spotify and Apple Music.

The bill also creates a new licensing organization that would be in charge of identifying copyright holders and paying them the royalties they're due.

Sen. Lamar Alexander
The Music Modernization Act was set to enter the Senate's informal "hotline" process, which allows noncontroversial bills to pass with a simple voice vote, possibly as early as this week.

Representing a state with a heavy music industry presence, Alexander said the bill will be a boost for working songwriters at all levels of their careers.

“We are on the brink of the Senate passing the most significant legislation in a generation that will help make sure songwriters get paid for their work and even more important, get paid a fair market value,” Alexander said. “We have 74 cosponsors working carefully with all the voices we’ve heard who had concerns, because we want a result that lasts for a long time and has stability.

“It was a big help to have the National Association of Broadcasters issue their statement of support. Virtually everyone is on board, and now it’s a matter of finding time on the Senate floor to approve the bill, send it back to the House of Representatives and then back to the president.”

Alexander, R-Tennessee, said he hasn't spoken to President Donald Trump about the legislation, but added "I can't imagine the president not signing it with a lot of enthusiasm particularly given the broad base of support."

The legislation is backed by music publishers, songwriters, record labels, broader music industry groups like the Recording Academy, the streaming services, broadcasters and the performance rights organizations.

One outlying opponent has been SiriusXM, which may see its royalty rates increase as a result of the legislation. Alexander said he believes it is too late to make any changes to the bill.