Friday, November 16, 2012

R.I.P.: Buffalo, Boston Broadcaster Jeff Kaye Dies At 75

A voice that for years introduced every newscast on WBEN, Buffalo, NY through much of the 1980s has been silenced.
Jefferson Kaye, the onetime WBEN 930 AM morning man, was a broadcast veteran who worked at WBZ 1030 AM Boston, when it was close to a Top 40 station in the mid-60s.

Jefferson Kaye, real name Martin Krimsky, blazed into Buffalo in the mid-60's as WKBW 1520 AM nighttime teeny-bopper leader of "The Teenage Underground" and soon was at the rudder of the K-Big giant ship as the station's program director. Kaye later became pgoram director at KB during its glory days.

The Early Years
Kaye was also was responsible for bringing telephone operators, police dispatch centers, fire departments, civil defense agencies and yes, even the Canadian armed forces to their collective knees with his 1968 adaptation of Orson Wells' "War of the Worlds."

Folks were calling from all over the eastern seaboard to see if Grand Island was indeed under Martian control.

Kaye's decades worth of work as the radio producer for Buffalo Bills Football set him up for a job at NFL Films, which he  held when he left Buffalo, voicing countless NFL video compilations.

Jefferson Kate passed away in Binghampton, NY. Kaye, 75, died from terminal cancer in his home surrounded by his family. He leaves his wife Suzanne, four children, and seven grandchildren.

A four-time Emmy Award winning broadcast announcer, Kaye first made his mark at WBZ, where from 1961-65 he hosted the drive time program as well as a Sunday night folk music program. While at WBZ, Kaye brought back live folk radio performances – and presented at the Newport Folk Festival where Bob Dylan’s now legendary electric guitar performance took place.

Chris Tyler, now program director of WTPA 92.3 FM in Harrisburg, worked for Kaye in the late 70s and recalls Kaye as the consummate professional with an incredible voice. "He also did the voice for Action News in Philly for many years," according to Tyler

In the ‘70s, Kaye produced an audio detailing his career at several stations, including WBZ Boston. To Listen, Click Here.

In his narration of a 1972 "Programmers Digest" composite, program director Jefferson Kaye uses the term "predictable unpredictability" to describe WKBW. It's an apt description.

Personality radio seemed at a crossroads in the early '70s, with the trend toward less talk and more rock  evident even then. But in 1972, 'KB was keeping personality radio alive with one of the greatest lineups in Top 40 history. And was it was both predictable and unpredictable as you'll read and hear later.

Much of 'KB's success had to do with Kaye, described by afternoon jock Don Berns as "the most innovative and creative" person he had ever worked for. Kaye let his jocks do their thing, not tying them up in a myriad of rules that restricted their freedom. The result was a station that - as Kaye put it - "break(s) all the rules. But then you think, who makes the rules?"

The following quote from Berns in Bob Paiva's "The Program Director's Handbook" perhaps describes WKBW best: "The station had a personality of its own, and within that personality each jock had a separate identity that fit within the overall framework of this non-formatted, highly visible radio station. Just about anything could happen on the air (and off) and normally did."

This composite, narrated by Kaye, looks at the 'KB jocks of 1972.

Jefferson Kaye and WBEN hosted the Academy Elementary School Choir for a special Christmas Eve broadcast, December 1975.

The Whole Story: Women And Media

Every medium and behavior has a prime-time.  This USA TouchPoints analysis reveals the prime-times of five different media and communications platforms among women 18-34 to illustrate how these vary according to the nature of their use.

Various mediums have different prime times, so do audiences. This analysis would show differences for older women and across working and non-working women.

According to a story by Mike Bloxham at, TV coincides with the prime time for the general population, with this group starting to tail off around 9.30. With TV so dominant by such a significant margin in our overall media lives it is only natural that prime time should occur within these hours.

Although the mobile phone is actively used for a range of functions throughout the day, mid-morning to mid-afternoon emerges as the peak usage hours.  Some of this may be related directly to work usage, but also to the fact that many women use mobile as their go-to personal communications deviceat work and when out— be it shopping, socializing, doing the school run etc. At other times, other media provide more competition for use.

Initial 12-12-12 Concert Line-Up Unveiled

Paul McCartney, Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band, the Who, Billy Joel, Roger Waters, and Jon Bon Jovi will be among the legends taking part in the 12-12-12: The Concert For Sandy Relief set for next month at New York's Madison Square Garden.

The December 12th concert will raise money for the Robin Hood Relief Fund to aid victims of Hurricane Sandy.

 Other performers on the bill include Kanye West and Alicia Keys, with more acts soon to be announced.

The concert is being presented by Madison Square Garden Company, Clear Channel Media and Entertainment, and The Weinstein Company. The concert will air live on the Fuse channel with ticket information expected to be announced in the coming days.

James Dolan, John Sykes, and Harvey Weinstein -- the same group that sponsored 2001's Concert For New York City -- said in a statement: "12-12-12 is shaping up to be a showcase of music royalty. The response from the entertainment community to help those most affected by Hurricane Sandy has been nothing short of astounding. We expect to announce additional legendary performers in the near future and we are confident that the event will ensure those in need will not be forgotten, and vital aid will be directed to rebuilding our communities along the East Coast."

Seattle Expected To Get Fourth Sports Station

Seattle’s KPTK 1090 AM (50kw) will drop its liberal talk format sometime in the next 90 days.

Syndicators of programs heard on the station have received cancellation letters from CBS and are currently reaching out to local radio stations to find a new home for the programming, according to a story at

According to one syndicator who asked not to be named, CBS is eliminating content that is not their own in favor of combining 1090 AM's Seattle signal into a CBS Radio Sports affiliate.

1090 AM will become Seattle's fourth all sports radio station alongside Fox Sports 1380 (KRKO-AM), 710 ESPN Seattle (KIRO-AM), and SportsRadio 950 (KJR-AM).  One syndicator indicated that 1090 will offer a local, afternoon drive sports talk program.  No word from CBS on that.

1090 AM is currently the Seattle home of Stephanie Miller, Thom Hartmann, Bill Press, Randi Rhodes, and Mike Malloy.  It is unlikely any of those programs will find a home on a major signal in the Seattle market.

Baltimore's WJZ-AM To Drop ESPN For CBS Lineup

CBS Radio is preparing to flip WJZ-AM, 1300, from ESPN Radio to the new CBS Sports Radio network, come Jan. 2, according to DCRTV’s Dave Hughes at

Bob Philips, who is market manager for CBS' Baltimore radio cluster, said 1300 would carry the new sports network full time.

CBS Sports Radio's lineup will include Boomer Esiason, John Feinstein, Doug Gottlieb, Tom Tolbert and Jim Rome.

There's no word whether any other station in the Baltimore market will pick up ESPN Radio, including "Mike and Mike" in the mornings. Aside from CBS, the only full-time sports talker in the market is WNST, 1570 AM, and it just signed a deal to carry Fox Sports.

ESPN Radio will continue to air in the Washington, D.C., market via WSPZ, 570 AM. "Mike And Mike" airs on D.C.'s WTEM, 980 AM.

While top-of-the-hour sports newscasts from CBS Sports Radio will air on CBS's 105.7 The Fan, WJZ-FM, Philips said the top-rated FMer would retain its locally based sports talk lineup and carry little programming from the new network.

KROQ's Bean Gets ‘Emotional’ Over Kidney Donation

LOS ANGELES - After a successful kidney donation to 106.7 KROQ’s Scott Mason Tuesday, Gene ‘Bean’ Baxter  made it through recovery with flying colors. And, despite some pain, he phoned into the morning show to thank KROQ listeners for their support and to let everyone know he’s aiming to be back in time for the Miss Double D-cember pageant, according to a posting on the KROQ website.

“It has not been the greatest week ever, in terms of weeks where I have not lost an organ,” says Bean followed by chuckles from Kevin and comedian Brad Williams, who was sitting in for Ralph Garman.

“I will tell you that I am alive and feeling pretty good and they’re actually going to let me out of the hospital today so I feel like we’re right on schedule.”

What many may not know is that Bean and Scott granted exclusive access to CBS TV cameras to following their journey; from preparation to surgery. And, according to Bean, we’ll have to chance to see the footage on the CBS Early Show. This is fascinating to Bean who will watch the removal of his own kidney. While Kevin and Funny Brad were disgusted at the thought of seeing the operation, Lisa May surprised the room with her elation. “I totally want to see that!” No word yet on when the tape will air. We’ll let you know as soon as we hear from CBS producers.

At one point during the call Bean started to laugh, and it was clear that the chuckling was painful.

“Today is the first day that I went on email and the messages from the Kevin & Bean listeners have just been so heartwarming. I know that there are a lot of people who’ve been following this and were really pulling for me and I really appreciate it. I’m probably not going to have the strength to write back to everybody but I can’t thank everybody enough for thinking of me.”

Bean turned the focus to Scott; the reason he was in the hospital in the first place, the recipient of his kidney. Bean went down the hallway to visit Scott, joking “I went down to check on my other kidney.”

“We know how poorly he’s looked in recent years. It’s unbelievable. The transformation… he looks 10 years younger, smiling, laughing, happy… You guys always make fun of me for being a robot not a unicorn, but I teared up when I saw him. It was emotional to see how great he looked.”

Bean hopes he can make it to full recover in time for the crowning of Miss Double D-cember live at the Slidebar Rock ‘n Roll Kitchen, Friday, November 30th. Showing his love for the special time of year Bean confessed, “You know I’ll do pretty much anything for boobs.”

Syracuse’s Kathy Rowe Celebrates 30-Year At Y94

Radio is all about connection.

When listeners wake up and turn it on every day, they’re inviting a personality into their home, their car, their workplace and their life. There are no visual judgments to get in the way. It’s left to the listener’s imagination and to the personality’s voice. Listeners become familiar with that personality’s beliefs, family, life and attitudes and learn about the world through their words. The listener trusts him or her.

But radio is an ever-changing medium. On-air personalities come and go, station formats change and companies buy and sell call letters every day. But WYYY-FM 94.5 (Y94) morning host and program director Kathy Rowe, 52, has defied all the odds of the fluctuating business.

Syracuse New Times profiles Rowe, who’s been on Y94 for 30 years steady and in radio even longer. She’s a voice, a personality and an icon who listeners have brought and continue to bring into their homes and lives every day. She’s not just a personality. To many, she’s a friend.

And so, for more than 30 years she’s stayed local and made her way quickly through the radio ranks: from Onondaga Community College’s radio station, WOCC, to WOLF-AM 1490 to WAQX-FM 95.7 (95X) and in 1982 to WYYY, then 94 Rock with its album-oriented “rock of the 80s” format, but now Y94.

She has emceed events and introduced bands, championed causes and organizations, interviewed countless celebrities, watched the entire medium shift from tape to digital, mothered three children and throughout it all has remained current with the trends, respected by her peers and loved by her audience.

Mobster Wanted Philly Radio’s Jerry Blavat Whacked

Reputed mob boss Joseph "Uncle Joe" Ligambi vowed in 2009 to kill radio celebrity Jerry Blavat, a mob turncoat testified Tuesday.

According to a story by John P. Martin at, Ligambi was livid over a Philadelphia Magazine article about the mob and believed Blavat was behind it, Louis "Bent Finger Lou" Monacello said.

"He was ranting and raving, 'That [expletive] Jerry Blavat, he set this up. Jerry Blavat, I'm gonna kill this [expletive],' " Monacello testified.

There were no signs that the threat against Blavat, a longtime Philadelphia radio icon and owner of the Memories in Margate restaurant at the Shore, was more than hot air.

Blavat, known to fans as the Geator with the Heater, said the threat was news to him.

"I never heard it," he said Tuesday. "I grew up with these guys. I know Joe."

The detail emerged as Monacello resumed his role as a star witness in the racketeering trial of the 73-year-old Ligambi and six codefendants.

In 1953, Blavat debuted on the original Bandstand on WFIL-TV with Bob Horn and Lee Stewart. In 1956 he managed a national tour for Danny and the Juniors, and he worked as Don Rickles' valet in 1958-59. He got his start in radio in 1960. By 1963, his show was syndicated in Camden, Atlantic City, Trenton, Pottstown, Wilmington and Allentown.

From 1965-1967, Blavat produced and hosted a weekly television show called The Discophonic Scene. He also guest-starred on television shows including The Mod Squad, The Monkees, The Tonight Show and The Joey Bishop Show. He has also appeared in the movies Desperately Seeking Susan, Baby It's You and Cookie.  In 1972, Blavat purchased a nightclub in Margate, New Jersey, and named it "Memories."

In 1981, Blavat was having dinner at a South Philadelphia restaurant with Greek mob boss Chelsais "Steve" Bouras and several other guests when Bouras was shot dead in a contract killing.

In the early 1990s, an investigation by the New Jersey State Commission of Investigation into organized crime's influence in the liquor business made public Blavat's association with the Bruno-Scarfo crime family. During the investigation, Thomas A. DelGiorno, a former Scarfo crime family Capo, testified that Blavat had regularly paid a "street tax" to the crime family, had purchased a $40,000 yacht for crime boss Nicodemo Scarfo and was one of several individuals who purchased a condominium in Florida for Scarfo. In exchange, the criminal organization secured employment for Blavat throughout the state and also kept union organizers out of Blavat's nightclub. Del Giorno also testified that Blavat regularly served as a driver for crime boss Angelo Bruno. Blavat pled the fifth.

In 1993, Blavat was inducted into the Philadelphia Music Alliance's Hall of Fame.   In 1998, he was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame as part of a permanent exhibit in its Museum of Radio and Records. In 2002, he was inducted into the Broadcast Pioneers of Philadelphia's "Hall of Fame."

On January 15, 2010, Blavat celebrated his 50th consecutive year on radio.

Blavat has been producing and hosting two oldies concerts a year at the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts in Philadelphia every year since January 2002.

In 2011, Blavat is a DJ for oldies radio station WVLT (FM) 92.1 in the South Jersey area, for the University of Pennsylvania's public radio station WXPN in Philadelphia, and for radio station WTKU-FM in Atlantic City.

100,000 Toys The Goal for ‘AJ’s Kids Crane

Since the advent of personality-driven morning radio, DJ’s have jarred their daily lives — and respective shows — to participate in outlandish promotional stunts in the name of charity, community outreach and (of course) ratings.

Nelvin C. Cepeda photo
In most scenarios, this involves placing the aforementioned on-air personalities in uncomfortable situations for an extended period of time while they collect canned food, bikes or toys for local charitable organizations. One of the longest-running and most successful of these programs is “AJ’s Kids Crane,” benefiting Rady Children’s Hospital.

In its 11th year, the annual toy drive hoists KEGY Enrgy 103.7 FM beloved radio personality AJ Machado in the air until a goal of 100,000 toys is reached for Rady Children’s Hospital, according to a story at   Calling a scissor lift his new home, Machado entered the aerial platform Wednesday in the Ikea parking lot in Mission Valley and is expected to stay up until Wednesday, the day before Thanksgiving.

“This toy drive has become the biggest supplier of toys to Rady Children’s Hospital,” says Machado, a father of two young girls. “The toys are used to calm a nervous child, to entertain a bored one, to ‘bribe’ someone resisting medication or treatment, and to bring some normalcy to a kid in the hospital.”

This is the first time Machado — and sidekick Hula Ramos — have hosted the event with Energy 103.7. He was previously with Star 94.1.

Read More Now.

Hitch Radio Launches, Promises Social Experience

Hitch Radio, a new service that offers searchable broadcast radio stations at your fingertips officially launched Wednesday. The free service aggregates more than 20,000 radio stations across the world and enables users to discover and share music in real-time through Facebook and Twitter.  Hitch Radio's mission is to create a superior radio listening experience by combining social media and real-time search technologies with an iconic travel metaphor to transform the way you listen to broadcast radio with friends.  Hitch Radio represents a royalty free music listening experience along with news, sports, and talk. The service will first be available on the Web, then iOs and Android apps and more to follow.  Hitch Radio is funded through private investors.

The service appeals to all age groups and is especially geared to 14-29 year old "Millennials," provides "Hitchers" a unique way to bring an unlimited number of friends on a real-time worldwide journey of free music, sports, news and talk. When consumers (Hitchers) share a ride on Facebook or Twitter, their friends can Hitch directly onto their Ride and join them in real-time by clicking on the link they post.  Each time the Hitcher finds a new Ride; their friends will be taken with them as they virtually travel the world from stream to stream and city to city.  While they are listening they can even chat about the DJ, music, sports, talk or news that they hear.

To use the service, sign-up at via Facebook or create their own account to begin the social experience with global radio.  Distinct from any other "radio" service in the market today, Hitch Radio was actually founded by radio people.  So, instead of starting with the premise that radio is "broken," they are invested in preserving all of the things that have contributed to the industry's longevity:  the DJ's, personalities and the relationships that radio nurtures by serving local communities.  

The problem with radio, as the founders of Hitch Radio see it, isn't the product, it's the antiquated distribution.  Hitch Radio's goal is to bring a worldwide audience to local radio stations.  "Radio is still the greatest music and information discovery channel on the planet," insists Hitch Radio's CEO, Founder and former Clear Channel Radio executive, Ayinde Alakoye.  "Hitch Radio will allow stations to take control of their digital destiny and interactions by allowing them to monetize their streams like never before, track behavior in real-time and convert listeners into station advocates."

Hitch Radio  is free for consumers.  According to Alakoye, "our  business is supported by advertising revenues, which unlike a music service, is a model that billions of radio listeners are already familiar with today.  We'll share our revenue with radio station partners who promote their participation with Hitch Radio on the air.  Another great part of our service is that we're not limited to just music.  Hitch Radio is news, sports, comedy and talk". 

FCC: Minority Ownership Sinks

The minority population in the U.S. is expanding.

But its ownership of American broadcast properties is not.

The San Antonio Business Journal reports non-Hispanic whites owned 69 percent of the country’s 1,348 television stations in 2011, according to a new FCC report. That’s up from 64 percent in 2009.

Non-Hispanic whites have also gained greater control of radio. African Americans owned only 231 broadcast stations, including radio and television.

In 2011, non-Hispanic whites owned a majority interest in 95.2 percent of all commercial AM radio stations in the U.S. — up from 94.6 percent in 2009.

The data mined from the Form 323 filings shows that “racial minorities owned 196 commercial FM stations (3.5%) in 2011 and 123 stations (2.3%) in 2009.”

Just 58 of those stations were in the top 100 Arbitron markets. 63 were in smaller Arbitron markets, and 75 were in unrated markets.

African-Americans owned 93 FMs in 2011, up from 63 in 2009. Asians owned 45 stations in 2011, up from 20. American Indians or Alaska Natives owned 28 stations in the most recent year, compared to 16.

Washington, D.C.-based media reform group Free Press warns that, despite the extremely low levels of female and minority ownership, the FCC is currently proposing relaxing its cross-ownership rule.
That rule limits a person or entity from owning television stations and newspapers in the same market.

Dial Global Intends to Voluntarily Delist from NASDAQ

Dial Global, Inc. announced Thursday that it has notified the Nasdaq Stock Market of its intention to voluntarily delist from NASDAQ's Global Market.

The decision to voluntarily delist from NASDAQ was taken following a review by the Company's Board of Directors, which determined that a delisting would be in the best interests of the Company.  In reaching this conclusion, the Company's Board of Directors considered numerous factors, including, among other things, the compliance costs and obligations that result from the maintenance of the Company's listing on NASDAQ, the relatively limited historical volume of trading in the Company's common stock, the applicable federal securities laws and the applicable NASDAQ rules.

The Company currently anticipates that it will file a Form 25 with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on or about November 26, 2012 to commence the delisting process.  It is expected that the delisting will take effect on or about December 6, 2012.

One year ago the company reported a loss of $17 million. For the quarter, DG lost $71 million, compared to $5.2 a year earlier.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

'American Masters' Pulls Back the Curtain on David Geffen

The notoriously press- and camera-shy record executive David Geffen is the subject of an upcoming episode of the PBS American Masters series, set to air on November 20th. American Masters: Inventing David Geffen will feature interviews with Cher, Tom Hanks, Steven Spielberg, Clive Davis and others.

In a clip posted by Rolling Stone, Geffen himself talks about assembling an A&R team in the 1980s that consisted of Tom Zutat, Gary Gersh and John Kalodner, three men whose eclectic tastes helped build and define Geffen Records.

Atlanta’s Kicks 101.5 Does Audingo Deal

Atlanta-based radio station WKHX Kicks 101.5,  owned by Cumulus Media, today announced a partnership with audio-visual social media provider Audingo, demonstrating its commitment to staying on the leading edge of technology. Audingo, pioneer of an audio-visual social media platform offering mobile users an unprecedented level of personalized interaction with public personalities and organizations, this summer received $3 million in angel funding and has been rapidly expanding ever since, in the world of radio and beyond.

Audingo's technology makes it possible for Kicks 101.5 listeners to receive voice and video messages from their favorite radio jocks via personalized phone calls, texts and emails at designated, preferred times. Subscribers can even send an immediate response to the jocks, fueling the conversation via the "Talk Back" feature.

Early-adopting radio stations across the country that tested the Audingo platform during its pilot phase have reported significant positive impacts to station ratings and listener loyalty. Well-known radio personalities like Rick Dees and Lars Larson have also embraced Audingo's new technology to connect with fans on a deeper level than text-based social media platforms allow.

Tribune Cross Ownership to Be Cleared in FCC Proposal

The Federal Communications Commission is set to vote on relaxing media-ownership rules and ratifying Tribune Co.’s common control of television stations and newspapers in cities including New York and Chicago, a final step the company needs to emerge from bankruptcy.

Bloomberg reports FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski Wednesday asked for a vote to “streamline and modernize” media ownership rules, Tammy Sun, an agency spokeswoman, said in an e-mail.

The proposals include allowing common ownership of a daily newspaper and a TV station in the 20 biggest U.S. cities, according to two officials briefed on the plan. In a separate proposal, Genachowski asked the agency to let Tribune keep its five TV-newspaper combinations, two officials said.

Chairman Genachowski
Tribune holds its television stations and newspapers under exceptions to a 1975 rule, and is asking the FCC to approve license transfers from the old company to the new entity as it emerges from bankruptcy proceedings. The combinations are in Chicago -- where Tribune publishes its namesake newspaper and opened TV station WGN in 1948 -- as well as New York, Los Angeles, South Florida and Hartford, Connecticut.

Genachowski’s proposed revisions to the broader rule would partially grant relief that newspapers have sought as they lose readers to the Web and advertising revenue declines. The agency officials spoke on condition they not be identified because the matter hasn’t been made public.

Music Artists Protest Web Radio Royalty System

A coalition of 125 musicians — from Motown’s Martha Reeves to Maroon 5 — is telling Congress that Web radio sites like Pandora need to keep paying the piper for Internet airplay, according to an article at

In an open letter to be published in Billboard, the artists, who include 40 Grammy winners, contend that Congress has more important things to do than debate the Internet Radio Fairness Act — legislation they contend will cut their pay.

“Congress has many pressing issues to consider, but this is not one of them,” write the artists. “Let’s work this out as partners and continue to bring fans the great musical experience they rightly expect.”

The musicians’ coalition contends that Congress has done enough to boost Pandora over the past decade by giving the Internet radio company a break on royalties, and now it’s time for the artists to share the wealth.

“Pandora is now enjoying phenomenal success as a Wall Street company,” the musicians write. “We celebrate that. At the same time, the music community is just now beginning to gain its footing in this new digital world. Pandora’s principal asset is the music. Why is the company now asking Congress once again to step in and gut the royalties that thousands of musicians rely upon?”

While the letter is signed by the likes of Don Henley, Vince Gill and CeeLo Green, their signatures were marshaled by MusicFIRST, an artists’ rights organization, and SoundExchange, a performance rights organization that collects royalties for Internet-delivered music.

“These artists have joined together to tell Pandora it’s time to go back to the drawing board. We all want Internet radio to succeed, but it won’t if it tries to do so on the backs of hardworking musicians and singers,” MusicFIRST Executive Director Ted Kalo said in a statement.

The letter, featuring the iconic image of a rock ’n’ roll guitar, makes clear that the legislation pushed by Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) in the Senate and Reps. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah) and Jared Polis (D-Colo.) in the House is going to be in for a tough fight.

K-Rock TV Spot Refused by 3 Stations, Called “Inappropriate”

K-Rock (WKRL/WKRH) has a new TV spot to promote its morning team, but it seems that the ad will be getting limited exposure.  According to, the three stations of CNY Central — NBC3 (WSTM), CBS5 (WTVH) and CW6 (WSTQ-LP) — have turned down the ad, calling it “inappropriate.”

Ed Levine, CEO and President of Galaxy Communications, the owner of K-Rock, tells, “CNY Central has declined to run the ad, deeming it inappropriate.”  Levine goes on to question the ruling: “Since the most revealing part of the commercial is a woman in a bra, it does make you wonder if the geniuses behind this decision ever watch their own networks!  It’s 1958 on James Street and Ozzie and Harriet are about to start.”

CC-Minneapolis Maneuvers For Seventh FM Signal

The FCC has approved a plan that essentially gives Clear Channel a seventh FM signal in Minneapolis.

The Commission gave the OK to an application to move translator W225AP/92.9 (St. Paul) to the Wells Fargo Center in Minneapolis, where the application states it would relay Clear Channel's KFXN-FM.

(Rules allow HD2 and HD3 channels to be carried and originating stations can be changed without FCC approval.)

 In approving the application, reports the FCC dismissed an informal objection from low-power FM activist Jeff Sibert, who argued the frequency should be preserved for low-power FM use and that the translator would effectively be used to originate its own programming.

The FCC found the proposal complied with all rules and noted that it allows translators to rebroadcast HD2 channels, even though they aren't otherwise available on analog radios. W225AP is owned by Christian broadcaster Educational Media Foundation, which sold what's now K278BP/103.5 to Clear Channel after moving it to the IDS Center in 2010. K278BP carries the News/Talk format of KTCN/1130 via a simulcast on KFXN-FM-HD2.

EMF has also applied to upgrade three other translators on 93.3, 99.9, and 102.5, with applications stating they would relay Clear Channel stations. The translators currently carry EMF's "K-Love" and "Air-1" networks.

Clear Channel could have programming on a total of ten FM signals in Minneapolis if all of the applications are approved; translators do not count towards ownership caps.

KPOJ Portland Host Carl Wolfson Hunts for a New Station

Former progressive talk-radio host Carl Wolfson says he’s been busy meeting with potential backers to return him to the airwaves since KPOJ-AM 620 switched to an all-sports format Nov. 9.

“I would love to be the voice for progressive talk radio in this city,” Wolfson tells “We’re looking for a way, a model, a station. I’m not going anywhere.”

Station owner Clear Channel, partly owned by notorious investment firm Bain Capital, has brought syndicated Fox Sports shows to KPOJ.

Wolfson says his show "made money consistently," but Clear Channel's business strategy is to synchronize content to attract national advertising buys.

Hannity Blasts Mr. Ed Radio Show For ‘Hate Talk’

Sean Hannity went after one of his favorite targets Wednesday night: the liberal media, and in particular, liberal talk radio hosts spewing what Hannity deemed “hate speech,” according to a story at

On his Fox News TV show, Hannity and guest Brian Maloney went after liberal radio hosts for propagating such hate speech, especially Ed Schultz, who has gone on tirades about everything from Dick Cheney to why in the world women would support Mitt Romney.

Hannity played audio of Schultz saying outrageous things about Cheney and calling Laura Ingraham a slut. Hannity pointed out that Schultz did not get in that much trouble for any of those comments, wondering aloud if the same kindness would have been granted to him. Maloney mocked Democrats for supposedly being “the party of decency and respect.”

The next liberal radio host that got highlighted was Stephanie Miller, who joked that the GOP is becoming a “rape-y party” and that Mitt Romney is “sweating like a whore in church.” Maloney dubbed this another example of the liberal “smear movement,” and said that conservatives can’t just ignore such remarks assuming that not very many people have heard what they said.

UK Teens Look To Radio As News Source

Radio has overtaken social networks as UK teens’ preferred news source, and continues to beat newspapers and TV in a recent survey. reports the poll, carried out by the youth writing community, asked UK teenagers how they ‘read all about it’.

When asked to express their opinion on ‘the best ways to keep up with the news’, 61% of teenagers polled said radio was their preferred choice, closely followed by 58% who selected television news. Unsurprising for a digital generation, social networks Twitter and Facebook followed at 56% and 52% respectively, with printed newspapers and free daily newspapers languishing at 26% and 22%.

When asked ‘how do you judge what news is important?’ less than half (40%) were influenced by a news story being on the front page of a newspaper, with 57% stating they were more influenced by whether friends started talking about it or if a story went viral on social networks (54%). And when it came to the value of journalism, 57% valued getting their news ‘straight away off Twitter’ above reading a journalist’s evaluation of the news (43%), with 35% also believing that direct and ‘straight from the horse’s mouth’ news was more trustworthy.

WYAV Myrtle Beach's Scott Mann Gives Back

The countdown to Thanksgiving is on, but first, one man is on a mission to give back as much as he can before he gives thanks.  WYAV 104.1 the Wave Scott Mann is camped out for the week to gather donations of food for local pantries.

Mann is challenging classic rock listeners to give back, too.  He's trying to fill a 6x16 foot trailer top to bottom before 6:00 p.m. Friday.  It's then 10th Annual Marathon for Meals and Mann says it's locals feeding locals.

AMAs To Honor Dick Clark

The American Music Awards have announced that Stevie Wonder will perform a tribute to late TV and Radio  legend Dick Clark.  Known by many for serving as host/executive producer of shows like American Bandstand, and Dick Clark’s New Years Rockin’ Eve, Clark Created The American Music Awards in 1973.

He died this past April at the age of 82.

“Without a Dick Clark, our entire current musical repertoire might be classical in nature. Not that there’s anything wrong with classical music, but Clark helped Beethoven roll over and tell Tchaikovsky the news,” AMA producer Larry Klein said in a statement. “Sunday’s tribute to Dick Clark performed by the iconic Stevie Wonder is going to be talked about for years to come.”

The awards will be broadcast live on ABC on November 18th at 8 p.m. EST.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Where Have All The KUSC Listeners Gone?

Music is the most mathematical art form, but for Los Angeles classical music station KUSC-FM 91.5 FM, the radio world's arithmetic has turned hostile, spelling nothing but trouble for its ratings, writes Mike Boehman at

Arbitron says KUSC has lost more than half its core audience over the last 20 months. Ratings declined moderately during 2010 and the first half of 2011, then went into a tailspin.

According to Aribtron's reports, KUSC's average core audience has sunk from nearly 26,000 listeners in 2009 to 9,500 in its latest report — a 63% fall.

KUSC's president, Brenda Barnes, says that as far as she can tell, the audience hasn't gone anywhere, not to satellite radio or other musical streams. She thinks Arbitron must be failing to include enough college graduates — the group most likely to listen to classical music radio — among the approximately 3,000 people in Los Angeles and Orange Counties whose listening habits it electronically tracks each month. To Barnes, KUSC's ratings drop is a sign of an undercount, not a decline in listenership.

But Arbitron stands by its findings. If anything, said spokesman Thom Mocarsky, college graduates are over-represented in its L.A.-area surveys.

Although age is one hallmark of classical radio listenership — an Arbitron study in 2010 found that 51% were ages 65 and older — recent findings by Station Research Group, a service organization for public radio stations, found that being a college graduate is the single most important factor for predicting whether classical music will be part of a person's radio diet.

KUSC officials also point to rising donor rolls during a period when ratings were sinking, from mid-2011 to mid-2012.

Report: Mike O’Meara Joins WTNT DC

DCRTV reports  confirmation that Mike O’Meara is returning to the DC radio scene and will be starting a 7 PM to 9 PM show come January 14th on Metro Radio talker WTNT, 730 AM/102.9 FM.

O'Meara will be joined by his longtime WJFK and, later, podcast crew of Robb Spewak, Buzz Burbank, and Oscar Santana.

"The success of their podcast was a significant factor in their return to the airwaves, along with the amazing loyalty of their many listeners," according to a Tuesday press release from O'Meara's camp. "Those listeners have, in equally impressive numbers, demonstrated their loyalty by spending heavily with Mike O'Meara show advertisers."

One of the show's advertisers, Oncor Insurance, has agreed to underwrite the broadcast's production costs, and continues to underwrite the show's special projects, including the recent, sold-out live stage show at Circus-Circus in Reno.

Metro Radio CEO Dave Houston said, "We are truly excited to acquire such a popular and successful show. We see it as a fresh, new addition to our lineup."

O'Meara fills the space formerly occupied by Michael Savage, who stopped airing on WTNT after his TRN syndication deal ended earlier this fall. O'Meara's last DC area radio gig, doing mornings at classic rocker 105.9 The Edge, ended in September 2011, when that station flipped to a simulcast of news talker WMAL.

'Today' Suffering Because Matt Lauer's 'Brand is Damaged’

Matt Lauer is so yesterday.

TV industry insiders say no amount of NBC executive reshuffling can save the embattled “Today” show — until its longtime co-host throws in the towel.

Lauer has been blamed for the show’s ratings woes, which intensified in June when co-host Ann Curry was suddenly ditched and replaced by Savannah Guthrie.

“This problem is not going to go away until Matt Lauer does,” a prominent former NBC News exec told the NY Daily News on Tuesday. “He’s great, but fairly or unfairly, his brand is damaged.”

The sentiment comes just as a new production team is poised to take over “Today,” which has fallen into second place this year behind archrival “Good Morning America” in the cutthroat ratings race.

Alexandra Wallace, 46, a TV news veteran with morning show experience and a senior vice president at NBC News, will take charge of the show in the near future. She will appoint a new executive producer to replace Jim Bell, who has been running “Today” since 2005.

Bell was behind the unceremonious ouster of Curry.

Many in the television news industry believe that the show lost its dominant place in morning TV because it became stale under Bell’s watch.

“You look at ‘GMA’ and they’ve got it going. They come across like a family, and the approach is appealing and feels fresh,” a high-ranking TV news insider told The News on condition of anonymity. 

“They’ve got that morning TV chemistry, which the current regime at ‘Today’ just seems to have let slip away.”

Radio’s Steve Harvey Expands Career To TV Talk

From comedian and syndicated radio talker  to TV talk show host, Steve Harvey has brought his own brand of humor and straight talk to daytime television.

Just months into its first season, "Steve Harvey" is a hit with critics and viewers alike.

Atlanta News, Weather, Traffic, and Sports | FOX 5

Get Well! Mary Beth Zolik, WRVF Toledo

It’s the news no one wants to hear. You have cancer.

Certainly it wasn’t what Mary Beth Zolik expected.

The longtime radio personality who brightens listeners’ morning commutes from 5 to 10 a.m. weekdays on Clear Channel's WRVF-FM 101.5 The River, told a coworker “I felt like I was sucker punched” by the results of a Wednesday diagnosis that showed she has Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma, an aggressive but also curable cancer.

“I have no symptoms right now,” Zolik told the Toledo Blade, “so I feel good. And that was the most shocking thing of all. I thought whatever it is I’m going in for I’m sure they won’t find anything because I feel good.”

But her doctor chimed in with the gravity of the situation: “He said I may feel good now, but maybe a year from now or less than that the symptoms would have started to arise and the cancer could have escalated that much more.”

And so the 58-year-old married mother of three finds herself in a battle for her life. After announcing her cancer to Mary Beth and Rickshow listeners Tuesday morning, Zolik begins chemotherapy Thursday, the first of 18 weeks of treatment through the end of April that will keep her away from her job some of that time, depending on how her body responds to the radiation.

R.I.P.: Bob French, Band Leader And WWOZ (Nola) Deejay

Robert "Bob" French Sr., the longtime leader and drummer of the Original Tuxedo Jazz Band and an outspoken, at times controversial, WWOZ-FM deejay, died on Monday, Nov. 12, after a long illness, according to  He was 74.

Mr. French last performed with the Original Tuxedo Jazz Band in the summer of 2011. Afflicted with dementia and suffering from diabetes-related complications, he then moved into an assisted-living facility.

His blunt talk, strong opinions, combativeness and force of personality earned him detractors; an altercation with a fellow WWOZ deejay reportedly got him booted off the air. But he also had his fans, including Harry Connick Jr. and Branford Marsalis.

After Hurricane Katrina, he used his position at WWOZ as a bully pulpit to berate elected officials he believed let the city down. Both on air and onstage, he returned to similar themes. "In God we trust, all others pay cash" was a favorite expression. He often referenced red beans as an indicator of his economic status or as an inducement for fans to buy CDs.

During one two hour-session on the air in the summer of 2007, he lobbied former WWOZ deejay Michael "Mr. Jazz" Gourrier for a free lunch; bashed the Rev. Jesse Jackson and Mayor Ray Nagin; and spun a diverse program of mostly traditional, mostly local, jazz. His radio playlists favored the likes of Louis Armstrong, Dr. John, trumpeter Lionel Ferbos, pianist-composer Matt Lemmler, hot jazz singer Ingrid Lucia.

Of his tenure at WWOZ, he said, "I do a lot I'm not supposed to do, but nobody stops me. I think it's good that somebody can do something that's not automatic. I'm not a robot; I'm a human being. And I've always been opinionated. Ask both of my ex-wives."

R.I.P.: Danville, VA’s Personality Blake Dalton Was 24

Danville, VA Radio personality Blake Dalton died unexpectedly Monday night and  his fans showed their support, according to a story at

It was a voice people in Danville made part of their morning drive to work. Tuesday morning, listeners heard condolences instead.

"(I'm) a good friend of Blake and I really thought the world of him," a listener said as the radio allowed listeners to pay tributes on air.

Blake Dalton, the mastermind behind his namesake show Blake Dalton's Most Music Mornings on Country Legends 103.7 (WMPW 970 AM) and 104.5 The Dan (WWPN 1580 AM) died Monday night.

Family say it was related to a seizure. He was 24.

"Working with him was something that I looked forward to everyday. I kinda feel like a police officer that lost his partner," said co-worker Justin Lloyd.

This news hit fans hard too. People brought flowers to his office, and sat candles outside.

His radio career started in high school, six years ago, at to WAKG, a country station in Danville, where he developed contacts with country stars like Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Slaten Ousted At KFNS St. Louis For Remarks About Blacks

Slaten (Post_Dispatch)
The afternoon drive-time show hosted by outspoken sports-talk radio host Kevin Slaten has been dumped by KFNS 590 AM in St. Louis following racially oriented comments he made on the air last week, according to a story at

Station general manager Katy Pavelonis said Monday,  “Thursday’s broadcast led to the (show termination) conversation we had today,’’ she said. “We are parting ways; the station is going in a little bit of a different direction.’’

Pavelonis said Slaten was not a direct employee of KFNS parent company Grand Slam Sports, as his arrangement had him selling his own advertising as an independent contractor. So, technically, he wasn’t fired — his show was canceled.

The gist of the remarks that got Slaten in hot water with station management were that African-Americans voted for President Barack Obama because he is black.

“The next time someone tells me that the black voters are not bigoted, stick it in the trash can because black voters are bigoted — ninety-three percent (of the black vote went) for Obama, six percent for (Mitt) Romney — you’re bigots,’’ Slaten said on the air. “You might not be bigots in your normal life, but when you vote you are bigots. ... That’s how you vote.

“There was a black preacher that said, ‘Vote for the black man.’ If there was a white preacher that said, ‘Vote for the white guy,’ he would have been pillaged.’’

Slaten added: “When it comes to black voters and a black president ... you’re not going to vote for a white guy if there’s a black choice. And I think that’s despicable, and I think that black voters ought to be ashamed of themselves for voting that way because of race. And that’s what they did.”

After 46-Years, WGN Makes 'Significant Change'

After some 46-years-old Chicago’s WGN has changed the call-in phone number for its listeners.  And WGN’s Mike McConnell got the chance to make the most of it..and he did.

To listen to on-air tease, Click Here.

WGN’s new studios and the change to all-digital equipment made the change necessary.  The new phone is 312-981-7200. 

McConnell hyped the change announcement at the top of his show Tuesday. 

To Listen, Click Here.

Stacey Simms To Leave WBT Charlotte

Stacey Simms, a staple of morning radio for a decade on WBT's "Charlotte's Morning News," will leave the station in December.

The Charlotte Observer’s Mark Washburn reports Simms, 41, said Monday that she's at a stage in her life where she wants to spend more time with her children, a sixth-grade daughter and second-grade son. She gets up at 3 a.m. weekdays and usually heads for bed before 8 p.m.

"As they're getting older, it's not working out. ... I can't ask my middle-schooler to go to bed at 7:30. Believe me, I've asked," she said.

She will talk to listeners about her decision on Tuesday's show, she said.

"Since 2002, Stacey has been instrumental in the development and success of Charlotte's Morning News and has always displayed the highest level of professionalism, and dedication, to WBT,"  Rick Feinblatt, Greater Media's senior vice president, said in a statement Monday.

Simms' departure is the latest in a string at WBT-AM (1110). Over the last three years, the station has parted ways with Gardner, who went to a morning radio job in his native Philadelphia, program director Carl East, and hosts Vince Coakley, Tara Servatius and Pete Kaliner. Simms currently shares morning news duties with Bo Thompson and sports commentator Jim Szoke.

CC-Toledo, Brian Wilson Part Company

Talk-show host Brian Wilson is no longer a voice on WSPD-AM 1370, announcing Monday afternoon that he had “parted ways” with Clear Channel Media and Entertainment.

The Toldeo Blade reports details on his departure were not available, and he could not be reached for comment. Wilson had been program director, news director, and afternoon drive-time host for more than seven years on the conservative radio station.

He posted the announcement on his Facebook account: “I am glad to have had the opportunity to preach the gospel of freedom and liberty to Northwest Ohio. Wish I had the chance on the air to say thank you and good-bye to my listeners. I will continue to make every effort to spread the message of free markets and liberty.”

Andy Stuart, WSPD’s vice president and regional market manager, declined to comment on Mr. Wilson’s exit, except to say it was effective immediately. He said Clear Channel is “just now launching a nationwide search” to find a replacement for Mr. Wilson and that WSPD will “put together a patchwork lists of local and national substitute hosts” in the interim.

Mr. Wilson leaves behind a legacy of controversy thanks to his acerbic tone, a perceived negativity toward Toledo, and at least one stunt that featured him trying to force his way into a news conference by pushing through a door barred by a city employee.

Several public officials said they are glad to see him go.

“WSPD will not be hard-pressed to find someone who has a better wit, greater charm, and a far deeper knowledge base than Brian Wilson had,” said former Toledo Mayor Carty Finkbeiner, whom Mr. Wilson referred to as Mayor Pant-Load. “He was one of the most boring talk show hosts I ever had the opportunity to briefly listen to.”

Mr. Wilson came under fire last year when he used the term “little monkeys” in reference to Toledo Public Schools students, and for a radio host who relied on local support for his show, he seemed to have contempt for area residents.

Read More Now

Smooth Jazz Returns In Chicago

After teasing fans for the last couple of weeks that a big announcement was coming soon, beloved Chicago radio icon Rick O'Dell today let the world know the good news on his blog. As of early this morning, O'Dell and Smooth Jazz are back, 24 hours a day on his new website, 
Rick O'Dell is a life-long Chicagoland resident and has been a staple on the Chicago-area radio airwaves since 1981. He best known for his 19 years at WNUA-FM, when it was a Smooth Jazz station, where he was a DJ, Music Director, and Program Director. He was most recently heard on WLFM-LP/Smooth 87.7. 
Since Venture Technologies, the owners of WLFM-LP, decided last April to take a cash offer from another company to allow them to use the 87.7 frequency, the Smooth Jazz/Smooth AC format has been off the Chicago airwaves, despite decent ratings and a large, loyal fanbase. 
Rick O'Dell -- who served as midday host, weekend specialty show host, Program Director, and driving force behind the station -- has spent months trying to find another Chicago radio outlet for the format. In today's corporate-owned, ultra-conservative, PPM-dictated radio world, that has most of Chicago's radio stations owned by just a few companies, none of which want to air anything that isn't overly-focus grouped in advance and already airing in numerous other markets, O'Dell was turned down. 
Instead, he decided to take matters in own hands and take the Smooth Jazz format directly to fans via the Internet.

Paula Broadwell Interviewed By Don Imus

Calls Petraeus’ Wife “Wonderful’

The January  interview coincided with the release of her biography, “All In: The Education of General David Petraeus.” 

The author’s interviews are being scrutinized for clues about her relationship with the former CIA director.

Kickin’ Fox

Joe Muto, the man better known as the "Fox News Mole," appeared on HuffPost Live on Monday to dish some dirt about his former employers.

Coca-Cola Journey Ups The Content Marketing Ante

Coca-Cola has unveiled a new website to support its content marketing aims by presenting information in magazine style, according

New York Times advertising columnist Stuart Elliott said the revamped site adopts "an approach and attitude more akin to a consumer magazine than a business portal".

Indeed, the layout of the homepage features large images and striking headlines of articles across a range of topics including sports, entertainment and health.

Called the Coca-Cola Journey, the website's main navigation is broken down into stories, opinions, brands, videos and blogs - leaving no doubt about the importance of content for the brand.

Newser WTOP App Hybridizes With Mobile Web

WTOP's relaunches news app

From  Michael Depp,
When serious storms hit Washington, D.C., this summer, WTOP realized the power of the app. 
“It happened on a Friday night, and everybody’s power went out,” said John Meyer, director of digital media at the news radio station. 
“People couldn’t go to their computers and they may or may not have radios, but everyone had their phones. It was really a wake up for us because this was the first event where we were really positioned to have a product that could solve people’s need for information. 
“We saw our mobile usage go up 30% that night.” 
WTOP, which is owned by Hubbard Media, had been in the smartphone space before with a previous iteration of its app, but the station jettisoned it in favor of pushing its mobile site. The new app, which was released this summer as “The Glass-Enclosed News App,” is actually a hybrid of the two. 
That means that after viewers open up a native app home page, various interior pages actually open up a mobile browser inside of the app’s frame and lead users to the mobile site. The reason for this approach was pragmatic, Meyer said. 
The back-end difficulty of serving ads across multiple platforms and devices was part of that. “It was becoming too complicated to have all of these various entry points,” he said. 
By keeping most of the app’s content based in the mobile site, which ties directly to WTOP’s proprietary CMS, Meyer said it also allows the newsroom to make more changes on the fly. 
Paul Jacobs VP and GM of Jacobs Media, which designed the app, said his company is increasingly taking this approach to design. “Particularly when you’re dealing with something in real time like traffic or even weather, it’s just very smooth to pull up a mobile webpage very quickly and conveniently,” he said. “If we can leverage the benefits of both [native apps and mobile Web], why not?” 
Meyer said that about 10% of WTOP’s digital traffic comes in through mobile right now, a number that’s growing. And part of what’s drawing that traffic is traffic itself — that is the literal roadway kind, which in Washington, D.C., is some of the nation’s worst.

Read More Now.