Saturday, August 13, 2016

August 14 Radio History

In 1909...announcer Ed Herlihy was born in Boston.

He is perhaps best remembered as a newsreel narrator for Universal-International, but he was also a staff announcer for NBC radio & TV in New York. He was a host of radio’s The Horn and Hardart Children’s Hour in the 1940’s and 50’s, while announcing on dozens of other productions.  Herlihy is fondly remembered as the voice of Kraft Foods radio and TV commercials from the 1940s through the early ’80s.

When he died at age 89 on January 30th 1999, his New York Times obituary called him “A Voice of Cheer and Cheese”.

'Ma Perkins' Cast
In 1933..., Crossley Broadcasting’s WLW in Cincinnati premiered the daytime drama “Ma Perkins.” Just four months later, “Ma” moved to WMAQ Radio in Chicago and was heard over the entire NBC radio network. Virginia Payne (below) was 23 years old when she started in the title role, playing a middleaged Ma operating a lumberyard in Rushville Center. Her children were Evey, Fay and John (who was killed in the war). One of the other characters in the show was Shuffle Shober.

Virginia Payne played Ma Perkins for an incredible 27 years — and 7,065 episodes.

In 1942...Garry Moore hosted a new radio program on NBC. “The Show Without a Name” was an effort to crack the morning show dominance of Arthur Godfrey (CBS) and “Don McNeil’s Breakfast Club” (ABC). A prize of $500 was offered to name the show and someone came up with the title, “Everything Goes”.

In brought the news of Japan’s surrender ending World War II.  On the CBS radio series, “Columbia Presents Corwin,” Orson Welles did a special reading about the fall of Japan, titled, “Fourteen August”.

In 1957...1010 WINS-AM New York went top-40. 1010 WINS adheres  to a strict playlist, except for Alan Freed and Jack Lacy.

In 1957...ABC radio announced an experiment with a “live” music show hosted by Herb Oscar Anderson. The show would be in sharp contrast to DJ shows and recorded music.

Tom Harmon
In 1962...It was announced that starting in September, sportscaster Tom Harmon will be heard on ABC radio where he will have a 10-minute weekday sports broadcast and he’ll also be heard on weekends in eight five-minute broadcasts. He joins ABC after 13 years with CBS’ Pacific radio network.

Once a member of the Los Angeles Rams, Tom Harmon was one of the first athletes to go into broadcasting. He was an All-American football player in 1940 at the University of Michigan.

One of Tom’s daughters would marry Ricky Nelson and, later, son Mark would become a well-known actor. He currently stars in NCIS on CBS-TV.

In 1962...Disc Jockey Bob Crane of KNX, Los Angeles is signed to star in “Send Me No Flowers” by the Laguna Beach (Calif) SummerTheate

In 1973...In the past six years, FM radio listeners have increased by 152%, according to Arbriton and a statistic that should give AM music stations some pause. The study covered 8 of the top-10 markets.

In 1973...Philadelphia adds its third FM rock station as WYSP 94.1 FM joins the frey behind WIFI 92.5 FM and WMMR 93.3 FM. WYSP (Your Station in Philadelphia) jocks included Tom Straw, Dean Clark, and Doug Cristian with Frank X. Feller as program director. The music included popular cuts from albums by artists such as Jimi Hendrix, Chicago, and Crosby Stills and Nash.

In 1983...WFIL 560 AM Philadelphia switches to all oldies and Cleveland’s WWWE 1100 AM goes AC.

In 1988...Shadoe Stevens takes over as host of “American Top 40”

Casey Kasem left the show over contract concerns with ABC. Industry trade paper Billboard magazine reported that the main disputes between Kasem and Watermark/ABC were over his salary, because of declining ratings and a smaller group of stations airing the show. Casey's final AT40 show aired on August 6, 1988. At no point during that final show did Kasem ever let on that any changes were afoot, and simply omitted the phrase "join me next week" while closing the show.

Kasem was replaced by Shadoe Stevens, whose first American Top 40 show aired on August 13, 1988, on 1,014 stations.  Kasem joined the Westwood One radio network less than a year later to start a rival show, Casey's Top 40. Many AT40 listeners were upset by Kasem's departure and, as a result, many stations dropped American Top 40 in favor of Casey's Top 40 once it hit the airwaves on January 21, 1989.

In 1993...It was announced Teens are listening to country music more and more. Country has climbed from a 2.3% share of teens in the summer of 1989 to an 8.7% share this year.

In 2007...CBS settles its termination dispute with Don Imus who was fired in April after referring to a mostly black university women’s basketball team as “nanny-headed hos.”

In 2007...Ryan Seacrest is tapped to host the 59th annual Emmy Awards. “I’ve covered the Emmys before from many different angles and I’m thrilled, honored and excited to be hosting it this year. With my schedule, there’s always that final check to make sure I could do it all, but with the Emmy’s you make the time.”

In 2012…Actress Rosemary Rice died after a heart attack at 87. She provided the voice of Betty Cooper on the Archie Andrews radio series, played the oldest daughter and narrated the early 1950s TV series, "Mama," appeared on Broadway, recorded 15 children's albums, and earned three Clio Awards for her work in television commercials – on camera and as a voiceover artist. For Clairol, she became the familiar voice of the ad slogan, "If I've only one life to live, let me live it as a blonde."

Two Fox Vets Tapped To Lead After Ailes' Exit

By Anna Driver

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Rupert Murdoch on Friday named company veterans Jack Abernethy and Bill Shine as co-presidents to lead Fox News after Chief Executive Officer Roger Ailes resigned last month following sexual harassment allegations.

Abernethy is CEO of Fox Television Stations and Shine is senior executive vice president at Fox, a unit of Twenty-First Century Fox Inc <FOXA.O>.

Both men worked at Fox when it launched in 1996. They will report to Murdoch, who has been running the day-to-day operations of the cable network on an interim basis. The appointments are effective immediately, Fox said.

“While this has been a time of great transition, there has never been a greater opportunity for Fox News and Fox Business to better serve and expand their audiences," Murdoch, executive chairman of 21st Century Fox and Fox News, said in a statement.

Ailes, who turned Fox into America's most lucrative and powerful cable news channel for conservatives, resigned in July following allegations of sexual harassment.

Former Fox News anchor Gretchen Carlson sued Ailes last month, claiming sexual harassment. Ailes has denied the charges. Fox hired a law firm to conduct an internal investigation.

New York magazine followed up with reports of other women who said they had been harassed by Ailes. The magazine also said  popular Fox News anchor Megyn Kelly had told investigators hired by Fox that Ailes "made unwanted sexual advances toward her" about 10 years ago. Ailes has denied those charges as well.

By choosing two men who worked under Ailes for years, Fox sent viewers and advertisers a message of continuity in an important election year, said Merrill Brown, who helped launch MSNBC and is now director of the school of communication at Montclair State University.

But that strategy could carry risk if the independent probe reveals the harassment allegations were known to more people at Fox, he said.

The Wall Street Journal on Thursday reported that Twenty-First Century Fox anticipates having to settle with the women who said they were victims of harassment by Ailes. The number of women who have come forward in the internal probe are in the double digits, the paper said.

A representative for Twenty-First Century Fox did not immediately return a call for comment.  

Abernethy, 60, will continue to run Fox Television Stations and will oversee all business components of Fox News Channel and Fox Business News, including finance and ad sales.

Shine, 53, will run all programming and news functions of each network including production and talent management. He will also continue to oversee all strategic planning through the  election season.

Fox News also named Suzanne Scott as executive vice president of programming and development for Fox News Channel and said Chief Financial Officer Mark Kranz was retiring.

When Twenty-First Century Fox reported earnings last week, it said Fox News was on track to record its highest-rated year ever. When Co-Executive Chairman Lachlan Murdoch was asked if Fox News would change its strategy, Murdoch said:

"There is no desire or need to shift the position it has in the market."

Sumner Redstone Willing to Be Deposed

Sumner Redstone
(Reuters) -- An attorney for Sumner Redstone said the media mogul would be willing to be interviewed briefly under oath in a lawsuit over his mental competency that could influence the future of his majority ownership of Viacom and CBS.

The issue arose as part of a lawsuit that is questioning whether the 93-year-old Redstone knew what he was doing when he removed Viacom Inc Chief Executive Officer Philippe Dauman and fellow Viacom board member George Abrams in May from a seven-person trust.

The trust will control Redstone's majority ownership of Viacom and CBS Corp when he dies or is incapacitated.

At a hearing on Friday in Norfolk County Probate and Family Court in Canton, Massachusetts, Judge George Phelan set a Sept. 19 trial date. Redstone attorney Robert Klieger said his client would agree to a "brief" deposition in the run up to trial, though attorneys for Dauman are also seeking a medical exam of Redstone.

"We don't believe a further medical exam is necessary," Klieger said. Phelan set a hearing for Aug. 26 to discuss both the deposition and the medical exam.

Dauman and Abrams filed a lawsuit in Massachusetts, where the trust was established, contesting their removal from the trust and the board of National Amusements Inc, Redstone's privately held movie theater company. Through National Amusements, Redstone owns 80 percent of the voting shares of CBS and Viacom.

The outcome of the case, and who ends up with control over the trust, will have wide-ranging implications for Viacom and CBS shareholders and could result in changes at the top of both companies, possibly through mergers and acquisitions.

Abrams and Dauman claim Redstone suffers from dementia, impaired cognition, a slowness of mental processing, a loss of memory, apathy, depression, and has been manipulated by his daughter, Shari Redstone.

In a June court filing, Sumner Redstone called it "offensive and untrue" to suggest that he was being unduly influenced.

Redstone and National Amusements also moved to oust five Viacom directors in June, including Dauman and lead independent director Frederic Salerno, asking a court in Delaware to rule that the changes were valid. Salerno fired back with his own lawsuit challenging the removal. Viacom is incorporated in Delaware.

St. Louis Radio: KC Chiefs To Fill NFL Void

Chiefs Radio announces the addition of CBS RADIO St. Louis stations KMOX 1120 AM and KYKY 98.1 FM HD3 as affiliates airing Kansas City Chiefs games for the 2016 season.

The expansion to St. Louis brings the Chiefs Radio Network, owned and operated by Cumulus Media, total to 75 affiliates, one of the largest networks in the NFL, providing Chiefs football coverage to 12 states across the Midwest.

“We are excited to have KMOX joining the Chiefs Radio Network team and providing Chiefs game broadcasts throughout the season in the St. Louis market,” Kansas City Chiefs President Mark Donovan said.

“When expanding Chiefs Kingdom to additional markets, our objective is to serve the fans, the affiliate station and their community, and the Kansas City Chiefs in the best partnership for all three entities. We are thrilled to include KMOX, one of the most iconic stations in the country, in our award-winning NFL broadcast coverage platform,” said Donna Baker, Regional Vice-President for Cumulus Midwest and Kansas City.

KMOX 1120 AM (50 Kw) Red=Local Coverage Area
"As America’s Sports Voice and home to all pro sports in St. Louis, KMOX is proud to add the Kansas City Chiefs to our lineup,” said CBS RADIO St. Louis Senior Vice-President John Sheehan, “The Chiefs have a lot in common with our St. Louis teams – committed ownership, leadership and players wanting to win it all for their rabid fan base. We look forward to partnering with the Chiefs and broadcasting the games on KMOX's 50,000 watt signal to Chiefs fans in St. Louis and beyond.”

Dan Israel, Executive Producer for Chiefs Radio Network adds, “In our 27th season airing on #1 ranked network flagship station KCFX, 101 The Fox, the broadcast is growing not only in expanded area, but we’re growing the broadcast team, as well. We’re extremely excited to welcome Dani Welniak, award-winning journalist and reporter for KCTV-5 (CBS-Kansas City). A former Professional Women’s Football Alliance and Independent Women’s Football League player, Welniak played five years and won an IWFL World Championship in 2008 as a running back and wide receiver for the Dallas Diamonds. She joins the team of Mitch Holthus, Len Dawson, Kendall Gammon and Art Hains, as sideline reporter 8/20, as the Chiefs travel to take on the Rams.

West Palm Radio: WLDI To Import Mack In the Morning

iHeartRadio/West Palm Beach has announced the launch of Mack In The Morning on Top40 WLDI WiLD 95.5 FM.  Mack in the Morning will air weekdays from 6 a.m. – 10 a.m.

On-air personalities Mack and Nina are also known as the award-winning afternoon crew on sister station WHYI 100.7 FM  Y100 in Miami.

Mack in the Morning will bring a mix of pop culture and unique South Florida flavor, and Mack in the Morning will wake up the Palm Beaches! Plus, the station will launch with an opportunity for listeners to Beat The Buzzer and WIN up to $1000 of Mack’s Money!

WLDI 95.5 FM (100 Kw) Red-Local Coverage
“It’s an exciting time for West Palm Beach radio, more so now with the addition of Mack in the Morning on WiLD 95.5,” said Chris Soechtig, Market President for iHeartMedia West Palm Beach. “Mack’s energy and lifestyle are a perfect fit for this legacy brand. His on-air charisma coupled with more hit music in the morning is a winning combination.”

“Launching a new morning show like Mack in the Morning is always an exciting chance to invigorate the market and your brand,” said Maverick, Program Director for WiLD 95.5. “Mack in the Morning delivers the lifestyle and entertainment our listeners crave and expect from WiLD 95.5! Mack and Nina are the perfect choice to wake up the Palm Beaches.”

Atlanta Radio: Bert Weiss Having Fun Again

Bert Weiss
Syndicated WWWQ 99.7 FM Q100 morning host Bert Weiss said he’s back to loving radio nine months after Jeff Dauler‘s shocking departure and move to a rival station.

“For the first time in my career, I have eight people on staff where the chemistry is absolutely 100 percent every morning,” Weiss said during a panel this morning full of illustrious morning show hosts from all over the country at an annual Morning Show Boot Camp for radio personalities in Buckhead this year. “We get up every day working in the same direction. There’s no ego. We are like a family.”

Atlanta Media Writer Rodney Ho at reports Weiss added: “I laugh more off air than on air” with his current staff, which now includes comic Brian Moote, who replaced Dauler earlier this year.

Anyone is expendable if they don’t produce for the bosses: Weiss said a restaurant buddy two years ago gave him perspective. He pointed at a Ketel One vodka bottle. He said he keeps those at eye level at his bar since that type of vodka is popular. But if people start drinking more Grey Goose, he would have no qualms about dumping Ketel One in the trash. “We are products,” Weiss told the audience. “I know it hurts to hear that. We bust our a**es every single day. We bring our personal lives to the radio station. But the bottom line truth is most companies see us as vodka bottles. If you’re ratings are good, then you get to serve Ketel One. If they’re not, they throw you away and bring in Grey Goose. We are a product.”

Tulsa Radio: Kristina Carlyle New KVOO-FM APD/MD

Kristina Carlyle
E. W. Scripps Country KVOO 98.5 FM  in Tulsa has added Kristina Carlyle as APD/MD.

Carlyle was most previously program director for iHeartMedia's Country KTGX 106.1 FM.  She departed in May.

Her past experience includes Cox Media Country KWEN, where she worked with current Scripps OM Steve Hunter.  Her experience also includes eight years with Cumulus Country KRST in Albuquerque.

PD Greg Mozingo says, “Kristina brings many skill sets to KVOO. She is an excellent on air talent and knows how to connect with the audience. Having experience in programming, she understands the day-to-day discipline of maintaining strategy and implementing fun and exciting tactics. Most of all she has an insatiable passion for Country music.”

“I am so excited to have Kristina join our team at Scripps and KVOO,” says Scripps/Tulsa OM Steve Hunter. “Her passion for Country music and local radio is incredible, and I know she will be a great addition to our team.”

KVOO 98.5 FM (100 Kw) Red=Local Coverage Area
This is a reunion for Carlyle and Hunter. They worked together at KWEN. Carlyle stated, "I'm very excited to join a company that values local programming and to be on a legendary station like KVOO."

St. Louis Radio: Kevin Slaten Exits KFNS

Kevin Slaten
Kevin Slaten, the longtime boisterous sports-talk radio host who has taken on local teams, high-profile players and members of the media for years, is planning to change formats.

According to, longtime Slaten announced Friday that he is leaving KFNS 590 AM and will be concentrating his efforts on going into news/political talk at one of the Insane Broadcasting Company radio stations run by Bob Romanik — KQQX 1190 AM or KZQZ 1430 AM.

Slaten’s final live KFNS broadcast was Friday, with replays of his shows set to run for the next two weeks while he takes vacation time in order to try to develop a new show.

Also departing is Owen Schroyer, who has been Slaten’s sidekick and is headed to Austin, Texas, to work as a news reporter.

Slaten’s exit comes as the day-to-day operations of KFNS are about to be taken over by Tim McKernan, who is being given an ownership stake by owner Randy Markel. McKernan, who is to start Sept. 1, now controls the weekday programming at jock-jabber competitor WGNU 920 AM and is expected to bring many of those shows to KFNS.

Markel took over KFNS late last year and has vowed to make the station profitable after a long series of financial woes.

Podcast: Hillary Clinton Talks About Her Health

Hillary Clinton
Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton talked about the work she does to maintain her health while on the campaign trail, in a new podcast released on Friday.

The Washington Examiner reports the Clinton campaign podcast's publication follows questions about her physical fitness that were raised by Donald Trump supporters earlier this week.

Clinton's presidential campaign launched the "With her" podcast — with special guest Hillary Clinton — that is aimed at providing a glimpse at life behind-the-scenes on the campaign trail. In an interview with host Max Linsky, Clinton talked about how worn out she felt after last month's conventions and the subsequent bus tour.

Clinton continued to list the things she does to stay healthy, in a manner that sounded as though she was speaking to a doctor for a routine checkup.

"I, knock on wood, am pretty lucky because I have a lot of stamina and endurance, which is necessary in the kind of campaign I'm engaged in," Clinton said. "But I also ... try to eat right, not always succeeding but try, try to get enough sleep, try to get exercise. Now I'm not going to pretend that I like it because I don't but between yoga and walking, getting on the treadmill, some weights, I try to keep up."

Clinton's comments about her health come soon after several supporters of Trump pushed questions about her health. Fox News personality Sean Hannity raised the prospect that Clinton may have had a "stroke" and suggested that Clinton has looked like she suffered from some "seizure-esque" movements. The Drudge Report similarly splashed photos and headlines that sparked questions about Clinton's health.

R.I.P.: '60s Singer Glenn Yarbrough

Glenn Yarbrough, a folk singer who at midcentury found fame and fortune with the popular trio the Limeliters but who walked away from it all for a life at sea, died on Thursday at his daughter’s home in Nashville.

He was 86-years-of-age according to The NY Times. The cause was complications of dementia.

Founded in 1959, the Limeliters — comprising Mr. Yarbrough on vocals and guitar, Alex Hassilev on vocals and banjo and Lou Gottlieb on vocals and bass — was a contemporary folk group in the tradition of the Kingston Trio.

Known for their burnished tight harmonies, sophisticated if nontraditional arrangements and witty onstage banter, the Limeliters were wildly successful. Amid the folk revival of the 1960s, they appeared often on television and in live performance, sold records by the hundreds of thousands and became millionaires in the bargain.

In 1963, Mr. Yarbrough, restless, left the Limeliters, and the group disbanded. An ardent sailor, he intended to spend the next decade at sea but was persuaded by his record label, RCA Victor, to record solo albums instead.

He made a string of them, toured for some years as a solo act and had a hit single with “Baby the Rain Must Fall,” the title song of the 1965 film starring Steve McQueen and Lee Remick.

Gottlieb, of the Limeliters, died in 1996. Mr. Hassilev, who juggled a long career as a musician, record producer and actor, lives in California.

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R.I.P.: Former Columbia SC Broadcaster Steve Patterson

Steve Patterson
A longtime broadcast manager  Steve Patterson has died.

Patterson was 69-years-of-age and cause of death has not been disclosed.

He managed WWDM for many years through many ownership changes leading up to 1999 when he moved across town to AM/FM.

He returned to WWDM in 2003 and the Inner City Broadcasting/YMF Media cluster.

He retired in 2013.

August 13 Radio History

In 1919...Rex Humbard, pioneer radio and television evangelist, was born. His Radio and TV ministry was based out of Akron, Ohio and founded in 1958.

In 1952...the original version of Hound Dog was recorded by Willie Mae (Big Mama) Thornton. It was the first hit for songwriters Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller, who also wrote Kansas City for Wilbert Harrison, On Broadway for The Drifters, and Stand By Me for Ben E. King.  Four years later, Hound Dog got the attention of the world when it was recorded by Elvis Presley.

In 1966…The first of the "Beatles bonfires," where ex-Beatles fans could burn the band's records to protest John Lennon's "bigger than Jesus" comment, was organized by radio station KLUE in Longview, Texas.

The next morning, KLUE's broadcast tower was struck by lightning, damaging much of their equipment, throwing the station off the air and sending the news director to the hospital.

In 1993...Terry Steele "The Bear", long affiliated with CHUM-AM, Toronto, Canada, died from a fall in his bathtub.  He also worked at CKEY and CJEZ in Toronto. For CKEY aircheck: Click Here.

In 1959...Danny Bonaduce was born. Bonaduce began as a child actor on "The Partridge Family" an eventually became a very successful Radio/TV host. He's currently doing mornings on KZOK 102.5 FM in Seattle.

In 1986...KRE-AM in Berkeley CA changes call letters to KBLX (now KBFN)

Joe Bolton
In 1986...Joe Bolton - WOR TV, Giants baseball announcer, WPIX TV (Officer Joe) -died. He started his broadcast career in 1927 as a staff announcer for WOR in Newark, New Jersey. He was the announcer for DuMont Television Network's talent show Doorway to Fame in 1947, but he left DuMont for WPIX on May 15, 1948 to be a news announcer and weatherman.

On January 17, 1955, he appeared as "Officer Joe" and hosted The Clubhouse Gang, and showed the Little Rascals. WPIX lost the rights to The Little Rascals, and in September 1958, he switched to hosting The Three Stooges Funhouse. This program aired on weekdays at 5:30 pm. He showed Three Stooges shorts until May 7, 1970. At one time, he showed Dick Tracy cartoons as "Police Chief Joe".

In 2007...In 2007..Phil Rizzuto, NY Yankees player and announcer died.

After a long Hall of Fame career as a player, Rizzuto broadcast Yankee games on radio and television for the 40 years. His popular catchphrase was "Holy cow." Rizzuto also became known for saying "Unbelievable!" or "Did you see that?" to describe a great play, and would call somebody a "huckleberry" if he did something Rizzuto did not like.

Phil Rizzuto
He would frequently wish listeners a happy birthday or anniversary, send get-well wishes to fans in hospitals, and speak well of restaurants he liked, or of the cannoli he ate between innings. He also joked about leaving the game early, saying to his wife, "I'll be home soon, Cora!" and "I gotta get over that bridge", referring to the nearby George Washington Bridge, which he would use to get back to his home in Hillside. In later years, Rizzuto would announce the first six innings of Yankee games; the TV director would sometimes puckishly show a shot of the bridge (which can be seen from the top of Yankee Stadium) after Rizzuto had departed. Rizzuto was also very phobic about lightning, and sometimes left the booth following violent thunderclaps.

Rizzuto started his broadcasting career working alongside Mel Allen and Red Barber in 1957. Among a number of announcers that Rizzuto worked with over the course of his career, Frank Messer (1968-1985) and Bill White (1971-1988) were the two most memorable. Rizzuto, Messer, and White were the main broadcast trio that presided over an important time period for the Yankees, which spanned from the non-winning CBS years through the championship seasons and other years of struggle during the Steinbrenner era. On television, for example, the Yankees broadcast team went unchanged from 1972-82.

In 2010...longtime (1949-’84) NBC newsman Edwin Newman died of pneumonia at age 91.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Fox News Makes Senior Leadership Moves

FOX News announced a new senior leadership team and management structure today, naming Fox Television Stations CEO Jack Abernethy and Senior Executive Vice President Bill Shine to serve as Co-Presidents effective immediately.

The announcement was made by the network’s founder, Rupert Murdoch, Executive Chairman of 21st Century Fox and Executive Chairman of FOX News Channel & FOX Business Network, to whom Mr. Abernethy and Mr. Shine will report.

In their new roles as Co-Presidents of FOX News Channel (FNC) and FOX Business Network (FBN), Mr. Abernethy and Mr. Shine will divide responsibilities for all facets of the networks. While continuing to run FOX Television Stations (FTS), Mr. Abernethy will oversee all business components of FNC and FBN including finance, advertising sales and distribution units. Mr. Shine will run all programming and news functions of each network, including production, technical operations and talent management. Shine will continue to oversee all strategic planning throughout the current election season, including election night.

In addition, Suzanne Scott has been named Executive Vice President of Programming and Development for FNC and will continue reporting to Mr. Shine. In this position, Scott will supervise FNC’s daytime and primetime opinion shows and lead development of new programming.

Jack Abernethy
Jay Wallace, Executive Vice President of News Editorial, will continue to manage the news division, also reporting to Mr. Shine. He was promoted to this role in April of 2016 and has been with the network in a variety of roles within the hard news unit since its inception.

In making the announcement, Mr. Murdoch said, “Jack was integral to the launch and success of FOX News nearly 20 years ago and we’re delighted he’s returning to take on this additional role. As we continue to benefit from his strong leadership of Fox Television Stations, his strategic vision and deep knowledge of the cable news business will ensure continued growth of FOX News and FOX Business Network for generations to come.”

He added, “Bill Shine has developed and produced a signature primetime that has dominated the cable news landscape for 14 of his 20 years with FOX News. His leadership and keen eye for programming has played a fundamental role in the success of both FOX News and FOX Business Network.”

Bill Shine
FOX News also announced that Chief Financial Officer Mark Kranz will be retiring. Throughout his tenure, Mr. Kranz was promoted from Director to Vice President of Finance, eventually assuming the role of CFO for both FNC and FBN. He joined the network from Viacom in 1997.

In commenting on the announcement, Mr. Murdoch said, “Over his 19 years with FOX News, Mark Kranz was instrumental in increasing profitability across all of our key properties. We are grateful for his many contributions to the company and we extend our best wishes to him as he embarks on a new chapter.”

Mr. Murdoch continued, “While this has been a time of great transition, there has never been a greater opportunity for FOX News and FOX Business to better serve and expand their audiences. Together with our worldwide team of dedicated professionals, we are the most influential and powerful brand in television.”

Report: iHM Considering On-Demand Paid Tier

With consumer appetite for digital audio surging, iHeartMedia could be the next player to offer up a paid, commercial-free on-demand service.

According to InsideRadio, iHM appears to be gauging consumer interest in such a plan, sending out surveys to some users of its free iHeartRadio app, asking if they’re interested and how much they would pay for it.

While iHM is not launching such a plan quite yet, they could be laying the groundwork. According to an iHeartMedia spokesperson, the company has been “looking at new features and doing surveys and research in the marketplace about that particular option and a bunch of others for years.”

iHeartRadio currently counts about 80 million monthly users for its free online radio service. And while it has strong brand recognition and an impressive user base, if iHeart launched a paid, on-demand tier, it would enter a crowded, competitive marketplace.

Spotify counts about 30 million paid subscribers and has another 70 million users for its free, ad-supported plan, while Apple Music, which is subscription-only, has grown to 15 million users in less than two years. Pandora, in contrast, has about 80 million monthly users, but only a few million for its paid tier, Pandora One, which it is promoting heavily. And Amazon Prime, SoundCloud, YouTube, Google and Tidal all have their own music services, some paid and some free. That’s a lot of options already, but iHeart’s reach is unique in the industry, and analysts say growing user demand is fueling the expansion of digital audio services.

Glenn Hower
“Around a quarter of U.S. broadband households subscribe to a streaming audio service, while two-thirds of households use some kind of service, paid or free,” notes Parks Associates’ senior research analyst Glenn Hower.

iHeart’s business model is already different from pureplays, as it sells integrated ads for its radio stations on-air and online through iHeartRadio. Even so, a subscription service could provide an always welcome additional revenue stream.

If iHeart launched a paid tier, Hower notes the company would still be playing catch-up behind the more established players. “The big differentiator for iHeartRadio has been that it is a nationwide collection of local radio stations. That may not be enough anymore,” Hower says.

NBC Still Selling Rio Olympics

NBC Sports Group chairman Mark Lazarus announced during a news conference Thursday stated, "This will be our most economically successful Games in history."

According to, he announced that NBC had sold $30 million of additional advertising since the Olympics began - on top of the already record-breaking $1.2 billion total before the flame was lit in Rio de Janeiro.

NBC is televising and streaming more Olympics coverage than ever. Every event is streamed live online, and TV coverage is spread across 10 channels - eight in English and two in Spanish - from morning until midnight. There are live prime-time broadcasts on channels outside the main NBC network for the first time ever.

Mark Lazarus
But the bell cow remains the prime-time showcase broadcasts on NBC's over-the-air network.

Nielsen reported that NBC's rating for this year's opening ceremony was down 35 percent from the 2012 edition, and reported that through the opening weekend, the NBC network prime-time ratings were below four previous Summer Olympics.

That matters to advertisers, who want their products front and center on the prime-time broadcasts.

Still, every night of Olympics coverage has been the most-watched TV show in prime time by some distance. And viewership surged this week as American swimmers won a slew of gold medals in races that aired live in prime time.

Lazarus was peppered with questions about whether NBC will have to offer make-goods as a result of the aforementioned ratings decline. He insisted that won't happen, because advertisers understand NBC is selling more than just the prime-time network broadcast.

"Overall, our ratings consumption is meeting our expectations - the mix is just a little different," Lazarus said. "Our advertisers are happy."

Because there's so much online streaming concurrent with TV coverage, NBC has made a point of trying to find the best ways to measure viewership. These Olympics have solidified the use of "average minute audience" - literally tracking the average number of online viewers of an event in a given minute. That's the same methodology Nielsen uses in its TV ratings.

NBC has thus published "total audience delivery" statistics that aggregate viewership across its TV channels and digital platforms. As one example, Tuesday's prime-time total was 36.1 million viewers, of which 33.4 million watched NBC's over-the-air broadcast.

Changing Viewer Habits Impacting TV Ratings

NBC has been scoring weak ratings ever since the opening ceremony last Friday. While the network is dominating other broadcasters, nightly viewership is down from London, particularly in the key 18- to 49-year-old demographic.

After six days of prime time coverage, the NBC broadcast network is averaging 28.1 million viewers, about 20 percent fewer than it had during the London games in 2012. The totals are almost 10 percent lower than the Beijing games in 2008, according to

This year NBC is showing more events via cable and Internet streaming than it did in 2012 or 2008. Still, the combined viewership figures are lower than London. And live-streaming represents just a tiny fraction of overall viewership, according to CNNMoney's analysis.

Experts say changing viewing habits and increased competition are likely culprits. While Olympics live-streaming isn't impacting the TV ratings in a serious way, overall streaming is -- because people can watch clips online. Or skip the games and watch something on Netflix instead.

"There isn't that pressure now to have to watch the entire Olympics live except if there's a big event people are talking about," Gold said. "I'm not saying that didn't exist in 2012, but people are getting more familiar with watching highlights, and it's becoming second nature."

Outsized excitement about the record-high-rated London games are also causing tough comparisons four years later.

Cord-Cutting Picking Up Steam

It started as a trickle. Right now it’s a steady stream. The question is whether it will become a deluge, and if so, how long until that happens.

According to MediaLife magazine, No one knows for sure, and so every quarter they look for new clues.

The latest quarterly pay TV subscriber numbers show people shed subscriptions 12 times faster over the past year than they had the prior year.

That’s according to an analysis by BTIG Research. It reports that 705,000 people dropped their subscriptions to the top eight providers, including Comcast, DirecTV and Charter, in the 12 months ended in June.

That’s compared to 59,000 during the 12-month period that ended in June 2015.

The annual rate of subscription decline has hit 2 percent.

BTIG analyst Rich Greenfield blames the declines on several factors: inflexible packages, surcharges that drive subscribers nuts, and high overall pricing for cable compared to the low monthly prices of streaming video on demand.

“Increased cord-cutting and cord-shaving ties directly to our view that antenna households utilizing streaming devices are increasing rapidly, albeit off a low base,” he writes.

It’s been a rapid turnabout for the industry. A few years ago, it was regularly adding subscribers by 1 or 2 percent each year, Greenfield notes.

“Now the industry is losing 2 percent through cutting/shaving, not to mention the growing pressure from cord-nevers,” he writes.

This hardly means a collapse of the industry. There are still some 88.5 million subscribers to the top cable and satellite companies.

Viacom: Redstones, Dauman Talking Again

Viacom Chief Executive Philippe Dauman and the media conglomerate’s owners — Sumner and Shari Redstone — have restarted negotiations aimed at ending a months-long feud over who will control large pieces of the Redstones’ $43 billion media empire, The NYPost is reporting.

The Redstones’ National Amusements Inc. has moved to oust Dauman and four other Viacom board members while the CEO is fighting back in court — several key Viacom board members have moved closer to supporting a move to name a new CEO, according to a source familiar with negotiations.

NAI owns 80 percent of the voting power at both Viacom — the owner of Comedy Central and MTV — and CBS.

While Dauman has maintained that he has the support of a majority of the 11-person Viacom board, several board members have recently come to believe the corporate in-fighting has dragged on long enough, a source familiar with talks told The Post.

It is unclear which have fallen in line with NAI in wanting Dauman to step down.

Natalie Maines Rips Country Radio 'Hypocrites'

Dixie Chicks singer Natalie Maines vented some political frustration on Twitter Thursday, calling out what she sees as a continuing double standard in the country music world — specifically, the tolerance of conservative commentary and disapproval of liberal views by country radio, according to Rolling Stone.

Responding to Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump's controversial statement regarding Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton and Second Amendment advocates a day earlier, Maines referenced the swift backlash she and the Dixie Chicks were given in 2003 following her now infamous comments about then-President George W. Bush.

It wasn't clear if Maines was referring to Trump appearances on news and talk radio programs favored by country listeners, or his political advertisements being played by country stations themselves.

Natalie Maines
In 2003, just as the U.S. was preparing to enter the second Iraq war, Maines famously told a concert crowd in London she was ashamed to be from the same state as President George W. Bush. The Dixie Chicks were then labeled traitors and removed from almost all country radio playlists as rallies were held to steamroll their records, halting their career.

Fast forward to Tuesday, August 9th, when Trump riled up a crowd of supporters in Wilmington, North Carolina, by claiming that if Clinton wins the presidency, she will appoint a Supreme Court justice who will then work to abolish the Second Amendment right to bear arms — and that there may be a way to stop her.

"If she gets to pick her judges, nothing you can do, folks," Trump said, according to The New York Times. "Although the Second Amendment people — maybe there is, I don't know."

That last part has been interpreted as a call for violence against Clinton, and was quickly condemned by Democrats and political pundits across the country, including journalist Dan Rather, who issued a blistering op-ed on Facebook.

Maines took the statement the same way, and is now outraged that her comments — far more benign than what many see as dangerous, violent rhetoric that further poisons the American political process — seemed to be treated much harsher by those working in country radio.

Seattle Radio: Kim Monroe New APD, Talent At KVRQ

Kim Monroe
Hubbard Radio/Seattle has named market veteran, Kim Monroe, as Assistant Program Director and Air Personality at Rock KVRQ 98.9 FM.

Kim joins KVRQ with a rich background in Rock radio including positions as Air Talent and Music Director at Alternative WEND, Charlotte and Seattle’s Alternative KNDD.

Kim commented on the position, “I’ve always imagined myself coming back to this amazing city, I just wasn’t sure how or when! Given this incredible opportunity to return to the city I love and resume my radio career at KVRQ is like a dream! I am beyond excited to work side by side with such a well-respected programmer, Dave Numme, and I know that we are going to do great things together! Honestly, I don’t even have the words to express how happy and grateful I am for this opportunity! I especially want to thank my new radio family at Hubbard Radio Seattle, particularly Marc Kaye.”

KVRQ 98.9 FM (68 Kw) Red=Local Coverage Area
Kim was Program Director at Alternative WXTM, Cleveland which later became WXRK, also held positions in promotions with Sony/RED, and at iTunes as an original content producer and programmer at Sirius/XM

Nashville Radio: WGFX's Mickey Ryan Joins Titans Broadcasts

Mickey Ryan
Cumulus Media/Nashville has announced that veteran sports broadcaster Mickey Ryan will join the Titans Radio Broadcast Team as a co-host for Titans Pre- and Post-Game coverage beginning Saturday, August 13, 2016, at 5pm CST.  The announcement was made today by Brad Willis, Program Director for 104.5 The Zone and Titans Radio.

Ryan joins fellow broadcaster Mark Howard and former Titans players Blaine Bishop and Kevin Dyson on the show, providing two hours of pre-game and post-game coverage during the Tennessee Titans games. This season, Titans fans can catch the Lee Company Countdown to Kickoff pre-game show LIVE from the new Titans Fan Zone, outside the south end zone of Nissan Stadium.

“Mickey is one of the most respected and insightful sports commentators in Nashville,” said Allison Warren, Vice President/Market Manager, Cumulus Media-Nashville.  “He has covered sports at its highest level and his reputation, contacts and relationships within the sports field are outstanding.  We have the strongest ensemble of voices in football analysts and sports commentators, and the addition of Mickey to our team makes us even stronger and deeper.”

Ryan said: "I have listened to Titans Radio since the very first broadcast, and I consider it an honor and the culmination of a lifelong dream to join the best team in NFL Radio. I look forward to sharing an upcoming season of Titans Football with Mark, Blaine, Kevin, and Titans fans all over our listening area."

Ryan will debut on WGFX 104.5 FM The Zone Titans Pre- and Post-Game coverage on Saturday, August 19, 2016, for 104.5 The Zone’s coverage of the 2016 Tennessee Titans season.

In addition to Titans Local Pre and Post-Game coverage, he will remain with 104.5 The Zone’s popular 3HL afternoon show airing weekdays from 3pm-6pm CST with co-hosts Brent Dougherty and Blaine Bishop.

104.5 The Zone is the official broadcast partner of the Tennessee Titans providing the game day broadcast play-by-play by Mike Keith, sideline reporting with Jonathan Hutton with analysis by former Titan Frank Wycheck, in addition to providing two hours of pre- and post-game local coverage during the Lee Company Countdown to Kickoff.

SF Radio:49ers’ New Radio Voice Is Kate Scott

Kate Scott
Kate Scott, Bay Area sports media personality, joins the ranks of gender-barrier busters when she does radio play-by-play for Sunday’s 49ers-Texans preseason game.

According to, Scott will also do the 49ers-Broncos game the following Sunday as she steps in for Bob Fitzgerald, who is moving to the TV side for the two games while Ted Robinson covers diving at the Rio Olympics.

Niner broadcasts can be heard on KNBR 680 and KGO 810 on the AM dial, along with KSAN 107.7 on FM radio.

Scott will be the third woman to do NFL play-by-play. Gayle Sierens worked one regular-season game for NBC in 1987, and Beth Mowins did two Raiders’ preseason games on TV last season and will do the same this season for KTVU-KTVU-plus.

Scott is the anchor on KNBR 680 AM’s morning “Murph and Mac” show, and does play-by-play of women’s sports for the Pac 12 Network.

Local Radio Nets Inks Deal With Rocking M Media

Local Radio Networks, Inc. (LRN) has added Rocking M Media, LLC to its growing list of affiliates.

Rocking M Media’s stations are located throughout the state of Kansas and they have been a long- time client of a well-established format provider but decided to make the switch after much research.  LRN is providing EIGHT 24/7 music formats to Rocking M’s (21) music broadcast stations.

"The level of support and the quality of the product that we have received from Local Radio Networks....if I had to rate it on a scale of one to ten.....would be a twelve," says Christopher Miller, President Rocking M Media, LLC.

LRN also has recently added three new programing formats: Contemporary Hit Radio, Classic Hits and Mainstream Rock Radio to their already existing formats: Adult Contemporary, Hot Adult Contemporary, Mainstream Country, Classic Country, Classic Rock, and Oldies to meet the growing needs of radio broadcasters.

LRN was established to help stations become more profitable by reducing operating expenses while maximizing the local feel of every station with first class talent. LRN is powered by a revolutionary VPN-based delivery technology known as RVC - Radio Velocity Control.

To learn more about LRN or to schedule a demo, contact Donna Halverson Direct Line (214) 307-5087, Email:

AdLarge Media provides exclusive national advertising sales representation for all of LRN’s 24/7 audio formats.

Gannett, NY Times Digging For Donald Divorce Details

Donald, Ivana
Gannett Co., — the parent company of USA TODAY — and The New York Times Co. asked the New York Supreme Court Thursday to unseal the records of Donald Trump's 1990 divorce from Ivana Trump.

The divorce was granted on the ground of "cruel and inhuman treatment" but Donald and Ivana Trump later reached a settlement. The case has percolated through the news over the years, including stories earlier in the presidential campaign season about whether the billionaire, who is now the Republican presidential nominee, sexually assaulted his then-wife.

Ivana has since said that she and Donald Trump remain close friends and she has endorsed his candidacy. She has also downplayed any reference to assault in the divorce proceedings.

Nevertheless, the news organizations argue that unsealing the records of the divorce would help "resolve an ongoing campaign controversy" over that allegation.

Glenn Beck Suggests His Sources Could Be Murdered

Glenn Beck
One day after a federal judge ordered Glenn Beck to divulge the names of two sources he relied on for reporting about the Boston Marathon bombing, the radio talk personality is suggesting that doing so might get them murdered.

Politico reports Beck mentioned a conspiracy theory during his radio show Wednesday, contending that a Democratic National Committee staffer killed in Washington last month was not the victim of street crime, but a politically directed hit.

Beck went on to appear to link that episode to a judge's ruling Tuesday — first reported by Politico — requiring Beck to name two Department of Homeland Security officials he allegedly relied on for reports linking a Saudi Arabian student to the Boston Marathon bombings in 2013.

"Read the papers," Beck said. "Read the Internet. Sources are under attack. Confidential sources are under attack and you cannot reveal confidential sources because there are sources that are concerned about this very kind of thing ... I am convinced, after talking to people in the government and talking through others to sources, I am absolutely convinced that people feel this way; that if I say anything. ..."

Country Artist Jennifer Nettles To Perform At Radio Show Dinner

Jennifer Nettles
Grammy Award-winner Jennifer Nettles will perform at the NAB Marconi Radio Awards Dinner & Show, sponsored by HD Radio, a DTS Solution, on Thursday, September 22. The event will take place at the 2016 Radio Show, held September 21-23 at the Omni Nashville Hotel and produced by the Radio Advertising Bureau (RAB) and the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB).

Nettles’ second solo studio album "Playing With Fire" was released in May 2016 with it’s lead single, “Unlove You,” continuing to climb the country music charts. The album came on the heels of a busy 2015, which saw Nettles embark on her headline Playing With Fire Tour, which hit 20+ cities with openers Brandy Clark and Ryan Kinder. Nettles also made her acting debut on NBC’s critically-acclaimed and ratings success "Coat Of Many Colors" and returned to her hosting duties on ABC’s "CMA Country Christmas Special."

Nettles emerged onto the music scene in 2004 as the lead vocalist of the international duo Sugarland. The band has earned eight number-one singles, over 22 million in worldwide record sales, and has received numerous awards from the Grammys, American Music Awards, The Academy of Country Music, The Country Music Association and CMT Music Awards.

“Jennifer Nettles is a truly phenomenal country music performer, with awards and accolades recognizing both her voice and songwriting abilities,” said NAB Executive Vice President of Radio John David. “We thank Big Machine Label Group and Scott Borchetta for connecting us and look forward to what will surely be an unforgettable performance.”

Established in 1989 and named after inventor and Nobel Prize winner Guglielmo Marconi, the NAB Marconi Radio Awards recognize stations and individuals for excellence in the industry. A list of this year’s finalists is available here. As previously announced, acclaimed on-air personality Scott Shannon will serve as the event’s emcee.