Saturday, March 25, 2017

March 26 Radio History

In 1923...comedian Bob Elliott of the comedy team Bob & Ray was born in suburban Boston.

Beginning a career as a radio announcer in the 1940’s, his rise to national recognition began when he was teamed with Ray Goulding on WHDH Boston.  Moving to New York the pair appeared on various networks and radio/TV outlets with their unique brand of humour spoofing broadcasting until Goulding’s death in 1990.

He succumbed to throat cancer Feb. 2 2016 at age 92.

In 1929...WQXR signed-on as W2XR in NYC.

John Hogan
Now using the call signs WFME began its life as W2XR, an experimental television station, owned by inventor John V. L. Hogan, operating at 2100 kHz, which went on the air on March 26, 1929.  Hogan was a radio engineer who owned many patents, and wanted a permit for an experimental station. To avoid interference, the frequency granted in 1934 by the Federal Radio Commission was considerably above the normal broadcasting range, which at that time ended at 1500 kHz. Hogan's permit was one of four construction permits W2XR was licensed as an "experimental broadcast station" on June 29, 1934.

W2XR began to broadcast classical music recordings on 1550 kHz.  His television broadcasts came to naught, but Hogan began to hear from unknown individuals who encouraged him to continue broadcasting music.

In 1936, Hogan and Elliott Sanger formed the Interstate Broadcasting Company, with the intention of turning W2XR into a commercial station at at time when there were already about twenty-five radio stations in New York.

The transmitter, which used a homemade antenna mounted on a wooden pole, was located in a garage in Long Island City, near the Queensborough Bridge, and its 250 watts provided just enough power to reach midtown Manhattan and parts of Queens.  On December 3, 1936, W2XR became WQXR—the cursive form of the letter "Q" mimics the number "2". An FM service, W2XQR, was added in 1939.

The North American Radio Broadcasting Agreement of 1941 formally extended the AM band to 1600 kHz, ending the "high-fidelity" service but keeping all four original stations near their existing dial positions. WQXR was originally slated to move to 1600 kHz as a five-kilowatt class III-A regional station, but was able to persuade the FCC to make it a class I-B station on 1560 kHz instead.

The New York Post approached the company in the early 1940s about purchasing the stations. Sanger said publicly that he would have preferred to sell to The New York Times, and in early 1944, the Times agreed to pay just over $1 million for ownership of Interstate Broadcasting Company.

In 1971, the Times put WQXR up for sale. Many offers were received for the FM station, but none of the bids for 1560 AM were satisfactory to management. When the FCC agreed to waive rules prohibiting stations from simulcasting if they were broadcasting classical music, the Times took WQXR off the market.

WQXR AM circa 1989
In 1992 the station broke away from the FM simulcast for good, changing to a pop standards format, which was inaugurated by a live studio performance by Tony Bennett. The change followed close on the heels of WNEW's switch from standards to business information, and to reflect that heritage, WQXR changed callsign to WQEW. Although successful, the station's advertising revenues were not spectacular, and on December 28, 1998, the Times pulled the plug and LMAed with Radio Disney after entering an 8-year local marketing agreement with Disney. At the end of this agreement in late 2006, ABC/Disney exercised an option to purchase in early January 2007. Disney/ABC officially became the owner of the station on May 24, 2007.

On November 21, 2014, Radio Disney New York filed an application to sell WQEW to Family Radio, who also owns WFME-FM and WNYJ-TV (and who previously owned what is now WNSH, owned by Cumulus Media.  Family Radio bought the station for $12.95 million. The FCC granted the sale on February 10, 2015. As a result, the station went silent the following Tuesday on February 17, 2015, in anticipation of the change of format. The sale was "consummated" on February 20, 2015 and the call sign was changed to WFME.

The station returned to the air on February 27, 2015, broadcasting Family Radio programming, again giving the network full coverage of the New York City market that it lost in January 2013, when Family Radio sold the original WFME to Cumulus Media.

In 1938...a performance of Howard Hanson's 3rd Symphony aired on the NBC Radio Network.

In 1954...Curtis Sliwa, was born: founder of the Guardian Angels and a Radio personality on WABC 770 AM NYC.

In 1996...WPAT 930 AM NYC Market switched to a Spanish format

In 2008…Radio personality/National Association of Broadcasters Hall of Famer/National Radio Hall of Famer Wally Phillips, who spent 42 years on the air at WGN-Chicago, much of it as the city's top-rated morning show host, died of Alzheimer's disease at 82.

Wally Phillips
Phillips was born in Portsmouth, Ohio. Six years later, after his father's death from tuberculosis, his family (including three siblings) moved to Cincinnati.  Phillips later dropped out of high school to join the United States Army Air Forces during World War II, but he ended up in Georgia in a tow target squadron assigned to fly practice targets for fighter pilots and anti-aircraft artillery.
After the end of World War II, he attended drama school for a while and then became a disc jockey in Grand Rapids, Michigan. A year after beginning his DJ career he returned to Cincinnati.

Phillips expanded his career as a radio personality at WLW in Cincinnati where he established his call-in format and his trademark style of remixing prerecorded interviews as a comedy piece. He was eventually fired after he inserted a phony item into a newscast.

Later, Phillips moved to Chicago, Illinois. His WGN morning show was consistently top-rated in Chicago, and led to his being labeled "the king of morning radio." At the height of his popularity, Phillips attracted nearly 1.5 million listeners, a now unheard of half of the market's listening audience.

Phillips was one of the first broadcasters to routinely use humorous and offbeat phone calls in his show, including prank phone calls. Sometimes, he called random payphones to see who would answer. For example, he called a pet cemetery to arrange a funeral for his mouse, and on another occasion he tracked down Benjamin Gingiss, founder of Gingiss Formal Wear, while the man was on vacation in the Bahamas to ask him where the fire extinguishers were kept in the store.

Another time, Phillips called Ipanema, a neighborhood located on the southern region of the city of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and inquired whether there were any women there who were "tall and tan and young and lovely." He tried to order pizza from Rome and even tried to return a natural Christmas tree weeks into the new year because it had browned and lost all its needles. On one occasion, he managed to obtain Luciano Pavarotti's hotel room number, and called to ask if the singer would give Phillips opera lessons and "teach (Phillips) to sing flat, like you do."

In 1998, he retired from WGN radio after 42 years, twelve years after giving up the morning show where he was succeeded by Bob Collins, who continued the format and the high ratings.

Phillips was inducted into the National Radio Hall of Fame, in the Museum of Broadcast Communications in 1993and into the National Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame in 1997, marking his 50th year in radio.

In 2009...Toronto radio station CHUM 1050 AM ended its music era again and this time it went to simulcasting the local cable-only TV news channel CP 24.  The final full song played was “Release Me” by Engelbert Humperdinck, just before 5 am. The station changed to sports talk April 13, 2011.

CHUM AM was founded by four Toronto businessmen, including Al Leary, a former sportscaster, who had been the station manager at CKCL for 14 years.  CHUM received its licence in late November 1944 to operate a station with 1000 watts.  CHUM launched as a daytimer on 28 October 1945,  with John H.Q. "Jack" Part, an entrepreneur in the business of patent medicines, as its president. The station broadcast a format typical of the late 1940s, with a combination of information, music, and sports.

CHUM was taken over in December 1954 by Allan Waters, a salesman from Part's patent medicine business. Waters' first major move was to secure a licence for 24-hour-a-day broadcasting for CHUM, along with a power increase to 5,000 watts.

Less than three years after Waters acquired the station, and soon after bringing the new full-time transmitter online, a major programming change was made. On May 27, 1957, at 6 AM, Waters switched the station to a "Top 50" format.  Elvis Presley's "All Shook Up" was the first song played.

"1050 CHUM" pioneered rock and roll radio in Toronto, and was noteworthy for hosting many noteworthy rock concerts including, among others, visits to Maple Leaf Gardens by Elvis Presley (1957) and the Beatles (1964, 1965, and 1966). While the station was rising to the top of the popularity ratings in Toronto in the late 1950s and early 1960s, it also built yet another new transmitter in Mississauga, Ontario (a few miles west of the current Toronto city line) along the Lake Ontario shoreline, and raised its power once again to its current 50,000 watts around the clock.

CHUM 1050 AM (50 Kw-DA-2)
In the late 1950s, CHUM was calling itself "Radio One", as its ratings continued to increase. An important part of CHUM's success was the station's unpredictable morning man Al Boliska, who joined CHUM in October 1957, after working at station CKLC in Kingston, Ontario.

By 1959, Boliska had made a name for himself as a disc jockey who got listeners talking. He also made them laugh, and became known for telling what he called the "World's Worst Jokes".  Boliska also did a number of stunts, such as taking part in a professional wrestling match with Whipper Billy Watson. When he lost, that led to another stunt, where Boliska stayed away from his show for several days, saying he was now too discouraged by the loss to do his show. A hypnotist was called in, and Boliska's self-esteem was restored.  Boliska left CHUM in late 1963 to go 'across the street' to CKEY. He died of a heart attack in Toronto on April 7, 1972 on the eve of his 40th birthday

He was replaced by WKBW Buffalo radio & TV personality Jay Nelson, popularly known as "Jungle Jay" from his role as host of a children's show on Buffalo's Channel 7 which was also popular among Toronto youngsters.

He would be followed by housewives' jock John Spragge; singer/DJ Mike Darow; Pete Nordheimer, replaced in 1961 by Bob McAdorey, teen DJ Dave Johnson, and all night DJ Bob Laine. Later additions to the CHUM DJ lineup included Duff Roman and Brian Skinner, both of whom came from rival Toronto rocker CKEY (then owned by Jack Kent Cooke).

In the late 1960s and early 1970s, CHUM DJs included Duke Roberts (also known as Gary Duke for a time), Johnny Mitchell (better known today as Sonny Fox), J. Michael Wilson, Tom Rivers, Scott Carpenter, Jim Van Horne, John Rode, Don Reagan, John Majhor, Mike Cooper, Daryl B, Terry Steele, Mike Holland and current CHUM-FM morning man Roger Ashby. Among their later night-time hosts was J. D. Roberts, who joined CHUM for a time in 1977, eventually becoming known across North America as John Roberts, White House correspondent for CBS News, then the co-anchor of CNN's morning program American Morning. He now reports for the Fox News Channel. Rick Moranis, later famous for his work on SCTV and Ghostbusters, was briefly a late-night CHUM DJ in the mid-seventies under the name "Rick Allan".

CHUM became well known for its zany contests. In the 1950s and 1960s, it was contests such as 'The Walking Man', where listeners had to spot CHUM's mystery walking man using only clues given out on the air. The 1970s' "I Listen to CHUM" promotion had DJs dialing phone numbers at random and awarding $1,000 to anyone who answered the phone with that phrase. In 1976, there was the CHUM Starsign promotion. Listeners wore a button featuring their astrological sign. If CHUM's 'Starsign spotter' saw you wearing your Starsign, you won prizes such as money or concert tickets to major events.

The CHUM Chart was, for many years, the most influential weekly Top 40 chart in Canada and has been hailed as the longest-running continuously published radio station record survey in North America.  The first CHUM Chart was released on May 27, 1957, with Elvis Presley's "All Shook Up" the first Number 1 song.

By the mid-1980s, CHUM had lost ground in the Toronto ratings to competing Top 40 station CFTR and FM-based music stations. On June 6, 1986, at 3 PM, after the playing of Starship's "We Built This City", CHUM dropped its Top 40 format for a gold-based adult contemporary format ("Favorites of Yesterday and Today"). The first song after the relaunch was "Beginnings" by Chicago. The change also discontinued the CHUM Chart, which ended the week of June 14, 1986 with Madonna's "Live to Tell" as the final Number 1 song. By 1988, the station had evolved into a brighter AC format, focusing on pop hits from the past decade and dropping much of the older music.

FCC Adopts New Channel Sharing Rules For TV

The FCC adopted a new Report and Order that expands TV broadcast stations’ ability to share a single TV channel so viewers can continue to receive their broadcast programming.

The FCC’s spectrum auction is due to wrap up soon, and full power and Class A broadcast stations that opted to relinquish their spectrum will likely need to share a channel with another full power or Class A broadcaster.

According to FierceCable, The FCC’s action will allow television broadcast stations with an auction-related channel sharing agreement (CSA) to continue channel sharing by entering into a new CSA in the event that their existing agreement ends.

“This enables stations to continue providing service to their viewers. The new rules also permit Class A stations to channel share outside of the auction context,” the FCC wrote in a news release.

Ajit Pai
FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, in a statement referencing the Care Bears’ motto “Sharing is Caring,” acknowledged the previous channel sharing rules were too limited.

“We will permit primary stations to enter into new sharing agreements, either with the same sharing partner or a new one, once their auction-related agreements terminate or otherwise expire. This will help prevent loss of broadcast service to the public by ensuring that stations with auction-related channel sharing agreements can continue broadcasting once their agreements end. We will also permit Class A stations that were not parties to auction-related sharing agreements to channel-share outside of the auction context,” said Pai in a statement.

The FCC is also aiming to help stations that could be displaced the channel repacking process that will take place once the incentive auctions are officially closed.

The FCC previously authorized channel sharing between secondary stations to help mitigate the auction’s potential to displace these stations. This order goes one step further and permits all secondary stations to share a channel outside the auction context, not only with another secondary station but with a primary station as well, Pai added.

Fox News Fires Comptroller Over Racist Comments

Fox News has fired longtime comptroller Judy Slater after an internal investigation concluded she had engaged in a pattern of racist comments and behavior, TheWrap has learned.

Slater, who is white and has worked at Fox for 19 years, was accused of asking one African-American employee if all three of her children were fathered by the same man, according to an individual familiar with the matter.                                                                                                                                                                                                         .
She also referred to African American women as “sista” and stereotyped African American employees’ speech, openly complaining that they mispronounced words, the individual said.

Judy Slater
In another incident, she responded to a good-night message from two African-American employees who stopped by her office by raising her hands in a “Hands up, don’t shoot” gesture, a slogan associated with the Black Lives Matter movement, the source said. On another occasion, Slater was also accused of throwing a rolled-up paper ball at one employee’s head.

Once employees came forward with complaints, Fox News newly hired Executive Vice President of Human Resources Kevin Lord oversaw a swift investigation that resulted in Slater’s termination.

When asked for comment, a Fox News spokesperson said, “We take any complaint of this nature very seriously and took the appropriate action in investigating and firing Ms. Slater within two weeks of this being brought to our attention. There is no place for abhorrent behavior like this at Fox News.”

TN Radio: Chattanooga's WFLI To Sign-Off Friday

WFLI, known as the Mid-South's Most Powerful AM Station and once one of Chattanooga's most popular radio stations, is going off the air.

WFLI 1070 AM (50 KwD, 2.5 KwN DA2)
According to The Chattanoogan, Station officials said, "After more than 56 years of broadcasting, WFLI 1070 AM radio will go off the air on MARCH 31, 2017. We sincerely appreciate our listeners, employees and clients for their support.

The station, owned by the widow of longtime owner Billy Benns, in recent years had a Southern gospel format.

Licensed to Lookout Mountain, TN WFLI signed on with 10,000 watts in February 1961, competing with the other AM radio stations in the Chattanooga market such as WDXB and WOGA (later WMOC) for the youth market. WDEF ruled the ratings in the morning with adults while WFLI appealed to teens and young adults with exciting shows during the afternoon and evening.

Known as "Jet-FLI" with matching airplane sound effects, the station was an overnight success in 1961, and later ushered in the British Invasion, Motown, and the Beach Boys to local teens.  From 1965 until 1972, the station's twice-yearly "Spectaculars" brought top music acts to Memorial Auditorium, offering as many as six top-charting acts in sold-out shows.

In 1967, the station increased its power to 50,000 watts. Among the many deejay personalities at WFLI, Tommy Jett is known for greeting his listeners with an enthusiastic "Hey Now!" and is remembered for his work on the midnight show "Night Train," which featured many young teens calling in to share their hopes and dreams live on the air. In 1968, Ted Turner bought WAPO (later named WGOW), to give WFLI a run for its Top 40 money. Billy Benns, the owner of WFLI, remembers Ted Turner rumored as saying "I'm going to run that grey haired man (referring to Billy Benns) out of town." Of course, Ted Turner turned his focus from radio to other business enterprises such as the creation of CNN.

From 1961 to 1980, WFLI was a popular Top 40 station in the Chattanooga area, and featured disc jockeys such as Johnny Eagle, Dale Anthony, Tommy Jett, Nick Smith, Ron Daily, Mike King, Jimmy Byrd, Dexter, David Carroll, Gene Lovin, Ringo Van "the Music Man", Bill Miller, Rick Shaw, Mike Murray, Jim Copeland, John David Spangler and Stanley Hall. It was nicknamed "Jet Fli." The station also held annual concerts called "WFLI Jet-Fli Spectaculars" which featured many big acts of the 1960s.

The WFLI Light in the Sky projected a gigantic spotlight in the sky, viewable for miles around, acting as a beacon to nighttime listeners and drawing them to places of interest in the Chattanooga area. These remote broadcasts, or "remotes," as they are called, involve a broadcast from an outside location, usually an advertiser's place of business. After listeners follow the light in the sky, they can experience the excitement of radio close-up, by meeting the deejay, listening to him or her 'cut-in' over the air in real time, and possibly winning a prize.

By 1979, FM was becoming popular, and the new WSKZ (KZ-106) captured most of WFLI's audience almost overnight. After a two-year switch to a country music format, WFLI switched to the religious and gospel format in 1982, branding itself as the "Midsouth's Most Powerful AM Gospel Station."

The station is currently owned by WFLI, Inc. and features programing from USA Radio Network.

March 25 Radio History

In 1918...sportscaster Howard Cosell was born. He died Apr. 23, 1995 at 77.

After the war, Cosell began practicing law in Manhattan, primarily union law. Some of his clients were actors, and some were athletes, including Willie Mays. Cosell's own hero in athletics was Jackie Robinson, who served as a personal and professional inspiration to him in his career. Cosell also represented the Little League of New York, when in 1953 an ABC Radio manager asked him to host a show on New York flagship WABC featuring Little League participants. The show marked the beginning of a relationship with WABC and ABC Radio that would last his entire broadcasting career.

Cosell hosted the Little League show for three years without pay, and then decided to leave the law field to become a full-time broadcaster. He approached Robert Pauley, President of ABC Radio, with a proposal for a weekly show. Pauley told him the network could not afford to develop untried talent, but he would be put on the air if he would get a sponsor. To Pauley's surprise, Cosell came back with a relative's shirt company as a sponsor, and "Speaking of Sports" was born.

Cosell took his "tell it like it is" approach when he teamed with the ex-Brooklyn Dodgers pitcher "Big Numba Thirteen" Ralph Branca on WABC's pre- and post-game radio shows of the New York Mets in their nascent years beginning in 1962. He pulled no punches in taking members of the hapless expansion team to task.

Otherwise on radio, Cosell did his show, Speaking of Sports, as well as sports reports and updates for affiliated radio stations around the country; he continued his radio duties even after he became prominent on television. Cosell then became a sports anchor at WABC-TV in New York, where he served in that role from 1961 to 1974. He expanded his commentary beyond sports to a radio show entitled "Speaking of Everything".

Cosell rose to prominence covering boxer Muhammad Ali, starting when he still fought under his birth name, Cassius Clay. The two seemed to have an affinity despite their different personalities, and complemented each other in broadcasts. Cosell was one of the first sportscasters to refer to the boxer as Muhammad Ali after he changed his name and supported him when he refused to be inducted into the military. Cosell was also an outspoken supporter of Olympic sprinters John Carlos and Tommie Smith after they raised their fists in a "black power" salute during their 1968 medal ceremony. In a time when many sports broadcasters avoided touching social, racial, or other controversial issues, and kept a certain level of collegiality towards the sports figures they commented on, Cosell did not, and indeed built a reputation around his catchphrase, "I'm just telling it like it is."

Cosell's style of reporting very much transformed sports broadcasting. Whereas previous sportscasters had mostly been known for color commentary and lively play-by-play, Cosell had an intellectual approach. His use of analysis and context arguably brought television sports reporting very close to the kind of in-depth reporting one expected from "hard" news reporters. At the same time, however, his distinctive staccato voice, accent, syntax, and cadence were a form of color commentary all their own.

In 1943...Jimmy Durante (actor/singer/comedian) & Garry Moore (actor/comedian/game show host) had their radio debut. They teamed for The Durante-Moore Show . Durante's comic chemistry with the young, brushcut Moore brought Durante an even larger audience.

"Dat's my boy dat said dat!" became an instant catchphrase. The duo became one of the nation's favorites for the rest of the decade, including a well-reviewed Armed Forces Radio Network command performance with Frank Sinatra that remains a favorite of radio collectors today.

Moore left in mid-1947, and the program returned October 1, 1947 as The Jimmy Durante Show. Durante worked in radio for three years after Moore's 1947 departure.

In 1958…Reporting to Ft. Chaffee, Arkansas by bus after his military induction, Elvis Presley had his famous hair cut short by Army barber James Peterson. The pop icon was assigned to the Second Medium Tank Battalion of the 2nd Armored Division, the "Hell On Wheels" division once led by General George Patton, based at Fort Hood, Texas.

In 1967…At the RKO 58th Street Theatre in New York City, the Who and Cream made their American debuts at Murray the K's Easter Show.

In Douglas Evans, who was an announcer at LA’s KFI Radio in the 30’s, and appeared in more than 100 movies, died in Hollywoood at age 65.

In 1971…New York's WNBC became the first U.S. radio station to ban Brewer and Shipley's hit "One Toke Over The Line" because of alleged marijuana references in the song's lyrics.

In 1979...personality Joe Montione started at 93 KHJ in L-A

In 1982…Humorist/radio and television writer (Milton Berle, Perry Como)/radio actor (Easy Aces and other programs with his wife Jane)/Radio Hall of Famer Goodman Ace died at age 83.

In 1998...Bernard Meltzer WOR 710 AM died.

Bernard Meltzer
His advice call-in show, "What's Your Problem?," aired from 1967 until the mid-1990s on stations WCAU-AM and WPEN-AM in Philadelphia, WOR-AM and WEVD-AM in New York and in national syndication on NBC Talknet.

A city planner by training, with a civil engineering degree from City College of New York and a master's degree from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, Meltzer moved from a career as a Philadelphia expert in urban problems to a radio host on WCAU. In 1973 Meltzer's show moved to WOR in New York.

Meltzer's show provided counsel on a wide range of quandaries, ranging from financial to personal: callers were as likely to ask about family crises, parenting issues and romantic problems as they were to ask about plumbing, home improvement or investment problems.

Segments were often bracketed by Meltzer delivering aphorisms or reciting moralizing poetry ("What shall we do with grandma, now that she's old and gray?") in his distinctive smooth, soothing, quiet voice. His show at one time held the highest ratings among adults in his time slot. Thanks to a doctoral degree earned by correspondence from an unaccredited university, listeners usually referred to him as "Doctor Meltzer."

Meltzer learned he had Parkinson's Disease around 1985, continuing on WOR until a brief final stint on WEVD in the 1990s.

His favorite saying was: "Courts are made for judges and lawyers". Another favorite, used to provide some comfort to callers and listeners, was: "The good people in this world far outnumber the bad."

In 2006…Country music singer/songwriter/TV co-host (Hee Haw)/radio station owner (KNIX AM & FM-Phoenix, KUZZ-FM-Bakersfield, California)/Country Music Hall of Famer Buck Owens died of a heart attack at 76.

In 2015…Radio veteran (WSGN, WERC) John Ed Willoughby, a popular morning show personality in Birmingham, Alabama for 37 years, partnered with Tommy Charles and then Doug Layton, died at age 80.

Friday, March 24, 2017

Seattle Radio: Entercom Names Drew Bland KKWF Program Director

Drew Bland
Entercom has announced that Drew Bland is the new program director for KKWF 100.7 FM The Wolf in Seattle.

Bland joins the Entercom from WWKA K92.3 FM in Orlando, Florida, where he served as the director of programming and branding for almost two years. Bland will officially join 100.7 The Wolf on April, 12, 2017.

Bland previously was withh CBS Radio/Phoenix for 10 years. He served as Assistant PD for seven years at KMLE and held positions as evening host, morning producer and most recently midday host. For the last five years he's been the Music Director and played the role as interim PD on two different occasions.

“After a nationwide search, it was very clear that Drew was the right person for the job. The Wolf is one of America’s great country stations, and it deserves a great leader like Drew,” said Dave Richards, vice president of programming and operations, Entercom Seattle.

KKWF 100.7 FM (68 Kw) Red=Local Coverage Area
“I’m ready to hit the ground running and lead this pack of creative minds and outstanding personalities at The Wolf. I am excited for this one of a kind opportunity,” said Drew Bland.

Detroit Radio: WMGC Welcomes The Return Of Big Boy

Beasley’s WMGC 105.1 FM The Bounce is growing again, starting Monday, March 27th at 6 a.m.! Our newest addition will join “Shay Shay” to anchor every weekday morning. He has a very familiar name to Detroit. The Bounce is proud to welcome Big Boy:

Big Boy has been blessed to be able to talk on the radio for a living since he was 17 years old. It’s not only what he LOVES doing, it’s what’s in his blood. He’s had the privilege to travel to many cities to host radio shows, but whenever people ask what his FAVORITE city was, he ALWAYS says “Detroit!” His previous three years in Detroit from 2006-2009 were some of the best years of his life.

He met so many people who listened to his show. When he got the opportunity to come back and host the morning show on THE BOUNCE, he JUMPED at this opportunity! “Not only are the city and the people here amazing, but THE BOUNCE literally plays my favorite songs!” Big Boy loves the music and enjoys listening to the station on his “off” time, as well as his “on” time.

“I’m SO excited to be working with Big Boy!” said 105.1 The Bounce Morning host Shay Shay. “We worked together earlier in our careers and had such great chemistry. He’s an amazing talent and I can’t wait to wake up Detroit every morning with an innovative, engaging and entertaining morning show!”

Detroit’s new station specializing in Throwback Hip Hop and R & B began rolling out our on air “Ambassadors” in December of 2016, mixing long time area radio favorites with a few new names who have moved to our city.

WMGC 105.1 FM (50 Kw) Red=Local Coverage Area
“This is a BIG THROWBACK to “good times” for our city!” added 105.1 The Bounce Program Director Al Payne. “I have been a huge fan of BIG BOY for a long time, yet being able to add him to this station and our cast of Bounce Ambassadors is EPIC! Out of everywhere he’s been, he says that there’s no love like DETROIT LOVE! If you partied with Big Boy from ’06 to ‘09—wait ‘til you hear him and Shay Shay now!”

TWH's Spicer Swats CNN Over Collusion Report

White House press secretary Sean Spicer mocked CNN on Thursday over its report that key figures in President Trump’s campaign may have coordinated with Russian operatives to release damaging information about former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton and influence the outcome of the 2016 campaign.

According to The Hill, Spicer recalled an incident in which former CNN analyst Donna Brazile was revealed by WikiLeaks to have provided a question to Clinton’s campaign ahead of a town hall event with presidential rival Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) when she was the vice chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee (DNC).

“[CNN] reported that anonymous U.S. officials told them that information indicates that associates of the campaign and suspected operatives coordinated, which they admit is not conclusive of anything,” Spicer said. “The last line said the FBI cannot conclude that collusion took place. I think there's probably more evidence that CNN colluded with the Clinton campaign to get her debate questions than the Trump campaign gave any kind of collusion.”

The FBI is investigating potential links between some members of Trump’s campaign and Russian officials as part of its investigation into foreign meddling in the 2016 election.

Citing anonymous U.S. officials, CNN reported late Wednesday that the FBI is reviewing “human intelligence, travel, business and phone records and accounts of in-person meetings” between the Russians and some in Trump’s orbit during the campaign.

Spicer on Thursday dismissed the report as reckless speculation.

“It is filled with a bunch of subjective terms about this person may have done this, possibly could have done that,” he said. “At the end of the story, way to the very bottom, it says the FBI cannot yet prove that collusion.”

NE-PA Radio: Fired Talker Says Anti-Trump Stance Cost Him Job

Steve Corbett
Corbett believes anti-Trump stance got him dumped from WILK radio gig.

Steve Corbett was planning to sign off for good at the end of the year from his afternoon radio talk show, but he said his politics forced an earlier-than-anticipated exit.

”I got fired,” Corbett said Thursday in an exclusive interview with the Times Leader. He suspected it was because of his unwavering opposition to Republican candidate and now President Donald Trump.

His “separation” — the official term he said management used at Newsradio WILK 980 AM / 103.1 FM — occurred last week as he was going on a planned vacation.  Ryan Flynn, vice president and general manager with Entercom Communications Corp., declined comment.

Corbett, 65, worked at WILK for 10 years and filled the 3 p.m.-to-6 p.m. weekday time slot with a mix of opinion, humor and hard news, often skewering Northeastern Pennsylvania power brokers and politicians. He used his voice and the airwaves to support Democrat Hillary Clinton during the presidential election and took every opportunity to criticize Trump, a stance that rankled listeners who complained to management, attacked him on the station’s Facebook page and threatened to boycott advertisers. There was even an online petition to have Entercom take him off the air, he said.

None of that was brought up during his brief meeting with Flynn, Corbett said. Instead, he said he was told his ratings had been low for the past two years and the company was making some changes.

He thought the company was pleased with his work. He signed a three-year contract in 2015 and got a raise. The consultant Entercom hired to review its talk radio across the country paid a visit and after listening in gave him a rave review, he said.

“It was a good 10 years. I stood on principle and never wavered,” Corbett said, adding he stood against racism and anti-Semitism. “I was the person who stood on those principles for fighting for what is right.”

WILK has announced evening host  L.A. Tarone will move into Corbett's 3p to 6p timeslot.  Michael Savage’s syndicated show “The Savage Nation” will move forward to the 6 to 9 p.m. slot.

Detroit Radio: Internal WFDF Memo Disses On Monica Conyers

An internal memo released Thursday details reasons why Monica Conyers was fired from her job at WFDF 910 AM Superstation this week.

The station said Wednesday the former Detroit City Council president was fired because she "violated corporate policy." No other explanation was offered.

However, according to WDIV-TV4, an internal memo from station owner Kevin Adell distributed to all station employees on Thursday does not hold any punches.

"Monica Conyers is still the same old-same old, she hasn’t been rehabilitated. Monica Conyers is the same person you saw in City Council with her sense of entitlement," Adell wrote.

He gave seven specific reasons for her termination:

1. Attempted to use a corporate benefit that didn’t exist for you. Example, using my executive assistant to book a room at The Peninsula in Chicago for $750/night when it wasn’t approved.

2. Attempted to garner a discount using her husband’s Federal Government ID when he was never a part of this trip. She has a Federal ID number, but it isn’t the Federal ID number that people want.

3. Being loud and obnoxious in the hallways of The Word Network and partying down like its 1999!

4. Bother the CEO while he is on vacation with his family. Calling him about refreshments because her husband, the highest ranking member, is coming in to do a radio interview with his wife on her radio show (give me a few minutes to throw up before I continue…).

5. Banging on the CEO’s door. It is closed for a reason, either I’m on the phone or meeting with someone…I am not looking for you. She bangs on the door until I open it!

6. Didn’t properly register as a lobbyist. She wanted to be included as a lobbying firm, but we discovered later that she never did register properly.

7. Swag for all three companies is used for marketing, she cleaned out our swag for all three companies! It is not to replace her wardrobe and not used for her personal sleepwear, etc.

WDIV also notes that back in 2010, she was sentenced to more than three years in prison for bribery.

Nielsen Completes Release of February 2017 PPM Data

Nielsen on Thursday 03/23/17 Released the final batch of February 2017 PPM Data for the following markets:

    34  Austin

    38  Raleigh-Durham NC

    39  Indianapolis

    41  Milwaukee-Racine

    43  Nashville

    44  Providence-Warwick_Pawtucket

    45  Norfolk-Virginia Beach-Newport News VA

    46  Greensboro-Winston Salem-High Point NC

    47  West Palm Beach-Boca Raton

    48  Jacksonville FL

    51  Memphis

    52  Hartford-New Britain-Middletown

Click Here To View Topline Numbers for Subscribing Nielsen Stations.

Nielsen Dives Deeper Into PPM's N/T Surge

News/Talk radio typically sees a surge in listening during election years, as people tune in to hear the political commentary in the lead up to November, before dropping back to typically listening share.

Unlike in years past, however, this year is breaking with norms, both politically and in Nielsen’s portable people meter (PPM) ratings.

In February, News/Talk listening again remained strong, so Nielsen explored this trend in more depth by breaking out the public, non-commercial stations from this group, along with some of the some of the less obvious storylines taking shape two survey months into the new year.

No matter which side of the political spectrum news/talk radio stations lean, the past year has seen steady growth in the format’s share of listening audience across the board. And this month’s results are the highest February shares for News/Talk in PPM measurement for both Millennials 18-34 (4.7%) and persons 25-54 (7.9%). From a general audience standpoint (all listeners 6 and older) this month (10.5%) trails only February 2011 (10.6%) for the largest February News/Talk share on record.

Senate Votes To Overturn Broadband Privacy Rules

By David Shepardson | WASHINGTON

(Reuters) -- The U.S. Senate on Thursday voted narrowly to repeal regulations requiring internet service providers to do more to protect customers' privacy than websites like Alphabet Inc's Google (GOOGL.O) or Facebook Inc (FB.O).

The vote was along party lines, with 50 Republicans approving the measure and 48 Democrats rejecting it. The two remaining Republicans in the Senate were absent and did not cast a vote.

According to the rules approved by the Federal Communications Commission in October under then-President Barack Obama, internet providers would need to obtain consumer consent before using precise geolocation, financial information, health information, children's information and web browsing history for advertising and internal marketing.

The vote was a victory for internet providers such as AT&T Inc (T.N), Comcast Corp (CMCSA.O) and Verizon Communications Inc (VZ.N), which had strongly opposed the rules.

The bill next goes to the U.S. House of Representatives, but it was not clear when they would take up the measure.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said the Senate was overturning a regulation that "makes the internet an uneven playing field, increases complexity, discourages competition, innovation, and infrastructure investment."

But Democratic Senator Ed Markey said, "Republicans have just made it easier for American’s sensitive information about their health, finances and families to be used, shared, and sold to the highest bidder without their permission."

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai said consumers would have privacy protections even without the Obama administration internet provider rules.

In a joint statement, Democratic members of the FCC and the Federal Trade Commission said the Senate vote "creates a massive gap in consumer protection law as broadband and cable companies now have no discernible privacy requirements."

Republican commissioners, including Pai, said in October that the rules would unfairly give websites like Facebook, Twitter Inc (TWTR.N) or Google the ability to harvest more data than internet service providers and thus dominate digital advertising. The FCC earlier this month delayed the data rules from taking effect.

The Internet and Television Association, a trade group, in a statement praised the vote as a "critical step towards re-establishing a balanced framework that is grounded in the long-standing and successful FTC privacy framework that applies equally to all parties operating online."

Websites are governed by a less restrictive set of privacy rules overseen by the Federal Trade Commission.

Jonathan Schwantes, senior policy counsel for advocacy group Consumers Union, said the vote "is a huge step in the wrong direction, and it completely ignores the needs and concerns of consumers."

Streamers Interested In NFL Thursday Night Football

The NFL is selling the rights to stream its “Thursday Night Football” games next season, and at least four big tech companies are interested, reports

Facebook, Amazon, Twitter and Google’s YouTube have all submitted proposals to the NFL in the hope of streaming the games, according to two sources familiar with the process.

All four companies also talked to the NFL last year about the same deal, which Twitter won with a $10 million bid for the right to stream 10 games. (CBS and NBC pay a lot more for the rights to broadcast the games on television.) It’s possible others have also submitted proposals.

The league is likely to make a decision within the next month, and could provide some kind of update to league owners at the NFL’s Annual Meeting in Phoenix next week.

Just like TV networks, tech companies are interested in live sports right now. Facebook and Twitter are cutting deals for virtually any live sports they can get their hands on, and Amazon is also interested in live sports deals and has been buying movie rights, too.

Live sports rights are expensive and tough to come by, though; traditional TV rights for major sports leagues like the NFL, NBA and MLB are already locked up for years. That makes these Thursday night streams the highest-profile package on the market right now.

But while the NFL deal is high profile, it’s tough to tell how valuable it actually is. Twitter didn’t report a meaningful spike in user growth or revenue as a result of last year’s games, for instance.

Twitter claims 3.5 million people watched each game, on average, but the average audience at any given time, which is how traditional TV ratings are calculated, was just a couple hundred thousand viewers per game. CBS averaged closer to 15 million viewers per “Thursday Night Football” game last season.

FCC Proposes New Rules Regarding Robo Calls

The Federal Communications Commission on Thursday proposed new rules that would allow phone companies to target and block robo-calls coming from what appear to be illegitimate or unassigned phone numbers.

According to The Washington Post ,the rules could help cut down on the roughly 2.4 billion automated calls that go out each month — many of them fraudulent, according to FCC Chairman Ajit Pai.

“Robo-calls are the No. 1 consumer complaint to the FCC from members of the American public,” he said, vowing to halt people who, in some cases, pretend to be tax officials demanding payments from consumers, or, in other cases, ask leading questions that prompt consumers to give up personal information as part of an identity theft scam.

More than 1 in 10 U.S. adults has been a victim to phone scams, said FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn, citing a December study by the call-blocking company CPR Call Blocker.

“Millions of Americans are harassed by unscrupulous telemarketers and others who often disguise their caller identification information to circumvent 'do not call' lists and anti-robocall tools,” said Verizon in a statement. “It needs to stop.”

The public will now have an opportunity to submit feedback on the proposal, which could be finalized later this year.

NFL To Trim Commercial Breaks

Roger Goodell
In a note to fans, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said the league is working with broadcasters to speed up the action and, in particular, to chop one of the most annoying commercial breaks in most NFL games.

“Together with our broadcast partners, we will be working to meaningfully reduce down time and the frequency of commercial breaks in our game. We will also be giving our broadcast partners increased flexibility to avoid untimely breaks in the action. For example, we know how annoying it is when we come back from a commercial break, kick off, and then cut to a commercial again. I hate that too. Our goal is to eliminate it,” Goodell wrote.

According to FierceCable, Goodell also acknowledged that fans feel there are “too many elements in the broadcast that aren't relevant to the play on the field” and that the NFL and broadcasters will be “looking to instead focus on content that is most complementary and compelling to you—whether that is analysis, highlights or stories about our players.”

The NFL has been in talks to reduce ad loads for months. At the NAB Show New York last November, NFL Network CEO Brian Rolapp talked about the league’s sagging ratings and ways it and its broadcast partners were looking to improve the experience for viewers.

“We have lots of ideas for improving viewership,” said Rolapp, detailing conversations the League is having with its broadcast partners about not just cutting out commercials, but also spreading them out differently.

In December, the NFL reportedly cut down the amount of ad breaks during a quarter. According to Ad Age, the NFL took the normal five ad breaks per quarter down to four but still carried the identical ad load, making the breaks longer.

Denver Radio: KLZ Host Arrested For Alleged Election Fraud

Steve Curtis
KLZ 560 AM Talk Host and Former Colorado Republican party chairman Steve Curtis, 57, has been charged with voter fraud and forgery, according to The Denver Post.

Curtis appeared Tuesday in District Court, where he was advised that he faces two counts in the case: forgery, a Class 5 felony, and misdemeanor voter fraud.

Weld County District Attorney’s spokesman Tyler Hill confirmed the charges, but said he couldn’t discuss details of the allegations, which were first reported by KDVR-Channel 31.

However a criminal complaint filed Feb. 1 says the forgery charge stems from “intent to defraud” a woman on the 2016 general election mail-in ballot. Hill said Curtis is due back in court on May 19.

YouTube's Bid To Grab TV Dollars Imperiled By Advertiser Revolt

By Julia Love, Jessica Toonkel and Tim Baysinger

(Reuters) -- The decision by a handful of high-profile consumer brands to pull advertising from Google’s YouTube over offensive content could threaten the site’s long-term strategy of stealing ad dollars from television, analysts and ad industry professionals said Thursday.

The immediate financial impact of the controversy is likely to be limited, in part because a big chunk of YouTube revenue comes from smaller advertisers who lack the budget for TV campaigns and do not have easy alternatives. Some analysts also believe that departing advertisers, eager to reach YouTube's millennial audience, will quickly return.

But with "brand safety" emerging as a major concern for marketers amid a surge in hate speech and other types of offensive content across the internet, the widespread assumption that major advertisers are ready to shift large chunks of their budgets from TV to digital now looks much more dubious.

The timing may also favor television networks as they usually present their fall line-ups and woo big advertisers starting in May, agency executives said.

YouTube, part of Alphabet Inc (GOOGL.O), has spent years courting big brands that spend hundreds of millions annually on air time. But over the past week, companies including Verizon Communications Inc (VZ.N), AT&T Inc (T.N) and Johnson & Johnson (JNJ.N) have canceled their YouTube ad deals.

“Video is actually a lot more fragile of an ecosystem than the Silicon Valley, software-eats-everything crowd may want to think," said Joel Espelien, a senior analyst at the Diffusion Group, which studies the future of television. "The point is all content isn’t actually the same, all advertising isn’t actually all the same. There is an element of taste. And when you ruin that, the whole thing does kind of start to fall apart.”

Google offers little visibility into YouTube’s financial performance, but analysts view it as a key driver for the company’s growth as its traditional search advertising business matures. Analyst Mark Mahaney of RBC Capital Markets estimates YouTube will bring in about $14 billion in revenue this year.

Alphabet shares have fallen more than 3 percent since Monday, closing at $839.65 on Thursday.

Whether the recent events are a mere blip on the radar for Google or a harbinger of bigger problems to come may depend on whether the company can quickly improve its technical tools to give advertisers more control over where their ads appear.

YouTube has begun reviewing its advertising policies and will take steps to give advertisers more control, Philipp Schindler, Google's chief business officer, wrote in a blog post on Tuesday. Google also plans to hire more people for its review team and refine its artificial intelligence – a key step, since much of the ad-serving is handled by automation.

Eric Schmidt, executive chairman of Alphabet, acknowledged in a Fox News interview that ads appearing next to videos promoting hate speech or advocating violence had slipped through the digital cracks in Google's elaborate ad-serving systems.

"We match ads and the content, but because we source the ads from everywhere, every once in a while somebody gets underneath the algorithm and they put in something that doesn’t match," Schmidt said. "We’ve had to tighten our policies and actually increase our manual review time and so I think we’re going to be OK.”

But Google's public statements have done little to assuage advertisers’ fears, said David Cohen, president, North America, for media buying firm Magna Global. Privately, Google has gone into more detail about how it plans to combat the issue, including ratcheting up its algorithms to better categorize content and being more stringent about how content is labeled, Cohen said.

But such additional controls would reduce the percentage of content that carries advertising and could disrupt the vibrant community of independent creators on YouTube, who drive traffic to the site and rely on revenue-sharing from advertising.

YouTube faces a special imperative to keep creators happy as rivals such as Facebook Inc (FB.O) and Twitter Inc (TWTR.N) try to court talent for their own platforms, said Hank Green, a prominent YouTube creator who runs the VidCon conference.

“YouTube has a decade-long head start, but obviously everyone wants a piece of the pie,” he said.

Even before the most recent revelations about YouTube, control over online ad placement had become a hot button topic for advertisers. Social networks and news aggregators came under fire during and after the U.S. presidential election for spreading fake news reports, and advertisers have also sought to avoid having their brands appear beside content that they categorize as hate speech.

“Between non-human traffic and fraud, fake news and hate speech, brands are more concerned than ever,” said Marc Goldberg, CEO of Trust Metrics, a New York-based company that addresses ad fraud.

Twitter Explores Subscription-Based Option

By David Ingram | SAN FRANCISCO

(Reuters) -- Twitter Inc (TWTR.N) is considering whether to build a premium version of its popular Tweetdeck interface aimed at professionals, the company said on Thursday, raising the possibility that it could collect subscription fees from some users for the first time.

Like most other social media companies, Twitter since its founding 11 years ago has focused on building a huge user base for a free service supported by advertising. Last month it reported it had 319 million users worldwide.

But unlike the much-larger Facebook Inc (FB.O), Twitter has failed to attract enough in advertising revenue to turn a profit even as its popularity with U.S. President Donald Trump and other celebrities makes the network a constant center of attention.

Subscription fees could come from a version of Tweetdeck, an existing interface that helps users navigate Twitter.

Twitter is conducting a survey "to assess the interest in a new, more enhanced version of Tweetdeck," spokeswoman Brielle Villablanca said in a statement on Thursday.

She went on: "We regularly conduct user research to gather feedback about people's Twitter experience and to better inform our product investment decisions, and we're exploring several ways to make Tweetdeck even more valuable for professionals."

There was no indication that Twitter was considering charging fees from all its users.

Word of the survey had earlier leaked on Twitter, where a journalist affiliated with the New York Times posted screenshots of what a premium version of Tweetdeck could look like.

That version could include "more powerful tools to help marketers, journalists, professionals, and others in our community find out what is happening in the world quicker," according to one of the screenshots posted on the account @andrewtavani.

The experience could be ad-free, the description said.

Other social media firms, such as Microsoft Corp's (MSFT.O) LinkedIn unit, already have tiered memberships, with subscription versions that offer greater access and data.

In the fourth quarter of 2016, Twitter posted the slowest revenue growth since it went public four years earlier, and revenue from advertising fell year-over-year. The company also said that advertising revenue growth would continue to lag user growth during 2017.

Financial markets speculated about a sale of Twitter last year, but no concrete bids were forthcoming.