Saturday, June 10, 2017

June 11 Radio History

➦In 1900
.. broadcast journalist Lawrence E. Spivak was born in Brooklyn. He is best remembered as the host of NBC’s Meet the Press from 1965-75. Prior to that time he had been a member of the program’s panel of questioners, from the first Mutual radio broadcast in 1947.  He died of congestive heart failure March 9 1994 at age 93.

➦In 1911...sportscaster Russ Hodges was born in Dayton Tennessee. As longtime baseball broadcaster for the New York/S.F. Giants, he was at the mike for Bobby Thomson’s 1951 home run, the so-called ‘Shot Heard Round the World.’  “The Giants win the pennant! The Giants win the pennant!”  Hodges suffered a sudden & fatal heart attack April 19 1971 at age 59.

➦In 1953...the all-black TV sitcom “Amos ‘n Andy,” which had begun on radio in 1929 with two white men playing all the parts, was driven from the air in the heat of the civil rights movement, for its so-called stereotypical characterizations.  This was the last time it was seen on CBS, though the radio series on which it was based ran until 1960.

➦In 1972...KRE-AM, Berkeley, California became KPAT-AM.

➦In 1985...WJW-AM, Cleveland, Ohio changed its call letters to WRMR-AM.

WJW broadcasting as WLBV in Mansfield, Ohio on November 13, 1926 under the ownership of John F. Weimer.    In 1928, the call letters were changed to WJW, reflecting the owner's initials.   By 1931, the station had been sold to Mansfield Broadcasting Association, and it was broadcasting at 1210 kHz with 100 watts.

WJW moved to Akron in 1932.  By 1936, the station was owned by WJW, Inc.   On March 29, 1941, WJW, like most stations around the country changed its frequency with the implementation of the North American Radio Broadcasting Agreement. As of 1942, the station was broadcasting with 250 watts at 1240 kHz.

On November 13, 1943, William M. O'Neill purchased the station and moved it to Cleveland, with facilities in the Guardian Building (now the National City–East 6th Building at 619 Euclid). Marvin Cade signed on the station that Saturday and was the evening news announcer. On the 11 of June 1985, Marvin Cade was invited to sign off WJW Radio for the final time when it switched over to WWWE at 1100 kHz.

WJW became Cleveland's fifth radio station after WHK, WTAM, WGAR (AM) and WCLE.

The frequency was moved to 850 kHz, and power was increased to 5,000 watts. The station became an affiliate of the Blue Network, soon to be ABC. WJW also brought the Metropolitan Opera radio broadcasts to Cleveland. The station also featured news commentary by Dorothy Fuldheim, and for a short period in the early 1950s was home to a disc jockey called Soupy Hines, later known as Soupy Sales.

A young disc jockey named Alan Freed joined WJW in 1951 from WAKR in Akron, Ohio. Shortly thereafter, Alan began making broadcasting history with his shows in which he was known as the "Moondog." Freed played rhythm-and-blues music by black artists for a largely white teen-age audience. He is purported to have given the music the name by which it is known today – rock and roll.

In addition to his radio program, Freed also organized local concerts by early rock artists, called the Moondog Coronation Ball, which many consider to be the first rock concert in American history. The concert on March 21, 1952 at the Cleveland Arena turned into a riot when far too many listeners filled the hall, causing Freed to apologize on the air the next day.

Freed left WJW in September 1954 for WINS New York.

On July 3, 2001, WRMR was one of seven Northeast Ohio radio stations involved in a complex exchange between three radio companies. Although generally reported as a "frequency swap", in reality these seven radio stations mostly traded call signs along with their respective formats and staffs – all to facilitate the transfers of ownership of four of the seven stations. As part of this complex exchange, Salem Communications changed the WRMR call sign to WKNR; changed the station's format to sports radio; rebranded the station SportsTalk 850 AM.  In effect, this new WKNR 850 AM licensed to Cleveland became the successor to the previous WKNR 1220 AM licensed to Cleveland.

➦In 2003...veteran NBC and ABC television newsman & anchor David Brinkley died of complications from a fall at age 82.

➦In 2008…The U.S. Congress heard singer Nancy Sinatra plead for legislation requiring that all performers – not just songwriters – be compensated when their songs are played on commercial radio.

➦In 2014…Radio personality/programmer (KMPS-Seattle, KUPL-Portland) /Country Radio Hall of Famer Lee Rogers, a 40-year broadcast veteran who also made career stops in Minneapolis and Jacksonville, died following a stroke at 67.

Rogers worked in the radio business for more than 40 years. His first job in the Country format came in 1970 at KBAM in Longview, Wash.

His career includes stops at KMPS (Seattle, Wash.), K102 (Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minn.), WQIK (Jacksonville, Fla.) and KCBQ (San Diego, Calif.).

Rogers retired from KUPL in 2009.

R.I.P.: Adam West..TV's Batman..Dead At 88

Adam West, the ardent actor who managed to keep his tongue in cheek while wearing the iconic cowl of the Caped Crusader on the classic 1960s series Batman, has died.

He was 88, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

West, who was at the pinnacle of pop culture after Batman debuted in January 1966, only to see his career fall victim to typecasting after the ABC show flamed out, died Friday night in Los Angeles after a short battle with leukemia, a family spokesperson said.

West died peacefully surrounded by his family and is survived by his wife Marcelle, six children, five grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

“Our dad always saw himself as The Bright Knight and aspired to make a positive impact on his fans' lives. He was and always will be our hero,” his family said in a statement.

After struggling for years without a steady job, the good-natured actor reached a new level of fame when he accepted an offer to voice the mayor of Quahog — named Adam West; how’s that for a coincidence! — on Seth MacFarlane’s long-running Fox animated hit Family Guy.

For Pandora-SiriusXM, It's An Investment Not A Sale

By Liana B. Baker and Aishwarya Venugopal

(Reuters) -- Sirius XM Holdings Inc said on Friday it will invest $480 million in Pandora Media Inc, giving the satellite radio company better exposure to internet music streaming while providing financial footing to Pandora.

While Sirius XM has a strong presence in the auto market, where its channels are offered in most new cars in the United States, it has trailed Pandora and other music providers in mobile and streaming content. The relationship could give Sirius expertise in expanding its listening base outside of the car.

"We believe there are future opportunities to accelerate Pandora's growth and further increase stockholder value," Sirius XM Chief Executive Officer Jim Meyer said in a statement.

While the companies did not provide details about how they would work together, Barclays analyst Kannan Venkateshwar said Sirius XM could bundle Pandora services to its customers, similar to how Amazon (AMZN.O) sells HBO and Showtime subscriptions.

Pandora CEO Tim Westergren said the investment "infuses resources to help Pandora continue to grow and innovate."

Pandora's shares have lost more than 30 percent over the past 12 months, and the company has never turned a profit on an annual basis.

As of Friday, Pandora's market capitalization of approximately $2 billion was dwarfed by Sirius XM's $25 billion.

Sirius XM, controlled by media mogul John Malone's Liberty Media Corp will receive three board seats and appoint the chairman. Sirius is prevented from buying additional Pandora stock for 18 months and will not buy more than 31.5 percent of Pandora after that period.

The deal ends a strategic review by Pandora and should ease pressure from activist investor Corvex Management LP that goes back more than year. The deal is a "new opportunity" for Pandora that raises its value, Corvex CEO Keith Meister told CNBC on Friday.

The investment also ends an earlier agreement for KKR & Co to make an equity investment. KKR will get a $22.5 million termination fee.

Reuters first reported on Thursday that Sirius XM was looking to invest in Pandora after their merger negotiations fell apart, citing sources.

While Sirius XM agreed to a standstill agreement for 18 months, it probably does not rule out an outright acquisition of Pandora later, analysts said.

Sirius XM's owner Liberty Media, controls a media empire that includes big stakes in sports teams, cable and internet companies. It took full control of Sirius XM in 2013, five years after it first bought a stake. Liberty owns more than 60 percent of Sirius.

The latest investment by Sirius is convertible into Pandora common stock at $10.50 per share, a 23.8 percent premium to its Wednesday close.

Pandora also said on Friday it will sell its ticketing firm Ticketfly to Eventbrite for $200 million, less than half of the $450 million it paid last year.

Shares of Pandora were up 1.1 percent at $8.51 in afternoon trading, while Sirius was off 3.4 percent at $5.22 per share.

Sirius XM was advised by Allen & Co and Bank of America, while Pandora was advised by Centerview Partners and Morgan Stanley.

The NY Times reports Pandora lost $343 million last year, nearly triple what it lost in 2015. And its active monthly listener base shrank to a two-year low in this year’s first quarter, to 76.7 million.

Spotify, which lets users listen to specific tracks on demand — in addition to themed stations, like Pandora’s — has raised billions of dollars and is preparing for an unconventional listing on the New York Stock Exchange this year.

Tidal, a similar streaming service purchased by Jay Z, sold a stake to Sprint this year as it continued to hemorrhage cash.

Amazon, Apple and Google also have streaming music offerings, and all face the same fundamental challenge: Paying for music rights and marketing has proved an expensive proposition.

S-F Radio: Matt Pinfield To EXIT KFOG

Matt Pinfield
Radio personality and journalist Matt Pinfield will leave his morning hosting duties at Cumulus Media’s famed San Francisco station KFOG 104.5 FM.

Pinfield wants to concentrate on his two nationally syndicated shows, “Flashback,” a weekly rock history program, and the nightly “Two Hours.” Both programs are distributed by Cumulus Media’s Westwood One. Pinfield joined the station a little over a year ago, in April 2016.

Variety reports in January of this year, Pinfield announced he was taking a leave from KFOG to enter a California rehab facility after a “slip involving alcohol,” returning in February. “I’m so excited about the future at KFOG,” he said at the time. Pinfield recently published his memoir, “All These Things That I’ve Done: My Insane, Improbable Rock Life.”

Cumulus Media San Francisco VP/Market Manager Justin Wittmayer issued the following statement: “We thank Matt for his contributions to KFOG and wish him all the best moving forward as he continues to entertain radio audiences through his two national radio shows.”

Pinfield added: “I’d like to thank my family at KFOG and Cumulus-San Francisco, who I love dearly, for giving me the freedom to concentrate on my two national radio shows for Westwood One, time to focus on my book, and to continue to work on developing TV and film projects. I love the Bay Area and being part of the legacy of such a heritage radio station as KFOG.”

Austin Radio: Anthony Allen Named PD For iHM's KASE, KVET

The Ant Man
iHeartMedia Austin announced Friday that “The AntMan” Anthony Allen has been named Program Director for KASE 100.7 FM Kase101, Austin’s No. 1 for New Country, and KVET 98.1 FM, All Time Country Favorites, effective immediately.

He will also serve as weekday afternoon on-air personality for KASE 101. The radio station brands each have a strong cross-platform presence and broadcast several popular personalities including “The Bobby Bones Show,” Anne Hudson, “The Bama, Rob & Heather Show” and Bob Pickett.

The AntMan succeeds Travis Moon who departed last month and will be responsible for the day-to-day programming operations of both KASE 101 and 98.1 KVET. He will work closely with on-air personalities and sales to oversee the stations’ on-air content, digital footprint and music programming. The AntMan will report to Brian Gann, Senior Vice President of Programming for iHeartMedia Austin/San Antonio.

“We are thrilled to have The AntMan leading our heritage Country brands, KASE and KVET,” Matt Martin, President for iHeartMedia Austin/San Antonio “He is a gifted programmer and an amazing talent. We could not be more excited to have him join the Austin team.”

KASE 100.7 FM (100 Kw) Red=Local Coverage
The AntMan has been with iHeartMedia for 17 years, most recently serving as Assistant Program Director and Music Director for 102.5 KNIX in Phoenix, Arizona. He joined the Country station in 2013 after working as Assistant Program Director and afternoon on-air personality at iHeartMedia Nashville’s The BIG 98. The AntMan’s background includes programming duties at iHeartMedia’s 102.1 The Bull in Wichita, Kansas. He also hosts the nationally syndicated “Country House Party” show on Saturday nights.

“It’s been more than an honor to work with the talented team at 102.5 KNIX at iHeartMedia Phoenix,” said The AntMan. “I’m looking forward to taking everything I’ve learned there with me to Austin to lead these storied Country brands, KASE 101 and 98.1 KVET. It’s a return home for my family and I can’t wait to get started.”

Riverside CA Radio: Robin Ward Named MD/APB At K-FROG

Robin Ward
CBS RADIO Riverside’s KFRG 95.1 FM radio has promoted Robin Ward to music director/assistant program director of the station. Ward will also host the midday time slot as her on-air persona Heather Froglear, weekdays starting at 9:00 AM heard on air and online at and through the app.

Ward joined K-FROG in 1993 and has served as promotions director and morning show host. In her role as music director, Ward will oversee all aspects of music, including artist and label relations and working with program director, Scott Ward (no relation), to develop each week’s playlist.

"Robin is such a natural fit for this position, having been here at The Frog for most of the station's history. She knows the format and the artists like the back of her hand,” said program director, Scott Ward.

Regarding her promotion, Robin Ward says, “After 24 years, my patience has been rewarded with my dream job:  being the MD/APD of the greatest station on earth.”

Buffalo Radio: Legendary Personalities Set To Join WECK

John Zach isn't the only local radio legend joining WECK AM 1230 &  W275BB 102.9 FM next month under the live and local programming lineup being put together under new owner Buddy Shula.

Buddy Shula
According to The Buffalo News, Shula, whose real name is William Ostrander, announced today that Harv Moore, Jon Summers, Gail Ann Huber and Danny Neaverth will have roles on July 10 when WECK becomes a 24-hour, full-service radio station with local and national news and locally programmed adult music.

As previously announced, Zach will be the station's news director and morning news anchor.

Huber, who spent 14 years in the mornings at WYRK, will join morning co-host Tom Donahue in the newly titled "Good Morning Buffalo with Tom, Gail and John Zach."

Summers, who recently left Channel 7's "AM Buffalo" after 27 years, will host from 9 a.m. to noon.

Moore, best known for the "Taylor & Moore" morning program on WYSL and WPHD, will host from noon to 3 p.m. His former on-air partner, Robert W. Taylor, will be WECK's imaging voice.

Mike Jacobs, who has worked at several stations in Buffalo, will be the host from 3 to 7 p.m.

WECK 1230 AM (1 Kw)
W275BB 102.9 FM (220 watts)
Neaverth, who had a morning career of more than 40 years at WKBW and WHTT, will work Friday afternoons on a show titled “Danny Moves Your Friday Fanny.”

Shula, who was a marketing executive for Buffalo Entercom stations before buying WECK, will host in the evening.

The key question is how can Shula afford all the talent, even if the legends work for much less than they did when they were at the height of their careers and are just doing it to get back in the game and to have fun.

"I'm going to pay them by selling more advertising," said Shula.

Denver Radio: Tyler Polumbus Bolts KKFN For Broncos Coverage

Former Broncos offensive tackle Tyler Polumbus (right)  is returning to the sidelines of Sports Authority Field at Mile High.

The eight-year NFL veteran, who retired following the Broncos’ 2015 Super Bowl 50 win, will join Newsradio's KOA 850 AM’s game-day coverage as the sideline reporter.

Polumbus played three seasons with the Broncos and most recently served as a co-host of a morning radio show on KKFN 104.3 FM The Fan.

Polumbus will replace Andy Lindahl as the sideline reporter, which is just one of the broadcast spots that will see change in 2017.

Rick Lewis, who hosts a show on KOA’s FM sister station, will provide the station’s color commentary alongside longtime play-by-play announcer Dave Logan.

Lewis replaces former Broncos wide receiver Ed McCaffrey, who announced his departure in April.

Norfolk Radio: Angel Brown Named Market President For iHM

Angel Brown
iHeartMedia/Norfolk announced Friday that Angel Brown has been named Market President for Norfolk, effective immediately.

iHeartMedia Norfolk includes Urban WOWI 103 JAMZ, Top40 WNOH NOW 105.3 FM, Rhythmic WMOV MOViN 107.7 FM and WHBT 92.1 FM The Beat and produces marquee events including MEAC Basketball Championship, East Coast Surfing Championship, Not So Silent Night and 7 Cities Summer Fest.

“We are thrilled to have Angel joining our Norfolk group of station brands,” said Dave Carwile, President of iHeartMedia’s Virginia/Carolina Region. “She combines a proven track record of sales leadership with an understanding of how to integrate client needs with our multimedia platforms. Angel will provide a great complement to our outstanding sales and programming leadership in the market.”

Angel previously worked as the Market Vice President for Cumulus in Mobile, AL where she also served as the Market Manager and Vice President of Sales.

“I am elated to join the iHeartMedia family in Norfolk,” said Brown. “The market and the company have had tremendous success over the years and are attributed to the company’s culture and its people. I look forward to working alongside the talented iHeartMedia Norfolk team and I look for forward to my future with the industry leader.”

FL Radio: iHM Names Paul Rogers As Capitol Coast President

Paul Rogers
iHeartMedia/Capitol Coast has announced the appointment of  Paul Rogers as Area President, effective July 1. iHM's Capitol Coast includes Tallahassee and Panama City, FL.

He'll continue partial duties of his previous post as Vice President of Strategic Partnerships for the Florida Region. Rogers has also served in a variety of cross-platform sales and sales management roles in Florida, Arizona and New Jersey.

He'll report to iHM North Florida Region President Linda Byrd.

"I am thrilled to have Paul back on our team," said Byrd. "He is smart, experienced, works hard and loves to win. Paul and I have had great success together since 1982, and I know he will be a terrific leader for the Capitol Coast and a great addition to the North Florida Region."

"I'm very excited by this new challenge," added Rogers. "I've learned so much working with Mike Preacher on our Strategic Partnerships team, and to now have the opportunity to be re-united with Linda Byrd in this dual role is truly a blessing. I'm looking forward to bringing a new focus to our Capitol Coast market and leading iHeartMedia's government outreach and advocacy in the state capitol."

Comey Testimony Was Ratings Winner

(Reuters photo)
In a rare move, the major networks upended their daytime schedules Thursday to air live coverage of former FBI Director James Comey’s testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee, and it paid off.

ABC, CBS and NBC—along with the three big cable news networks—pulled overnight ratings of 14.3 for the Comey testimony, which began about 10 a.m. EST and ran for about three hours.

While broadcast ratings got a boost from the high-profile testimony, Facebook Live streams of the event also drew big numbers. According to a chart by Delmondo, a social video analytics firm, BBC led the way on the platform by attracting 793,865 total views.

FierceCable reports Senator Elizabeth Warren’s Facebook Live stream of the event drew a bigger audience (660,180) than The New York Times (615,630) and Fox News (525,164). Also surprising, Super Deluxe’s psychedelic remix stream on Facebook chalked up 483,000 views, more than the Washington Post (474,661) and ABC News (347,967).

For the networks, the rare daytime ratings blockbuster came after a 2016-2017 season in which both NBC and CBS notched significant ratings wins.

For NBC, it’s a first-place finish in the 18-49 demographic for the third time in the past four years. The broadcaster finished the season with a 2.1 Nielsen live program/same-day time-shifted rating, mostly on pace with what it posted last year, according to MediaPost.

While CBS may have trailed in that demographic, the broadcaster won out in terms of total viewers, with 9.6 million. NBC had 8.1 million, ABC had 6.2 million, Fox had 5.8 million and the CW had 1.8 million.

In the 25-54 age bracket, NBC led broadcast nets with 859K viewers, followed by ABC’s 854K and CBS’s 784K.

But CNN clocked 1.017M news-demo viewers, putting it well ahead of comopetitors. MSNBC logged 633K news demo viewers and FNC scored 600K.

Bill O’Reilly: ‘I Should Have Fought Back’

Bill O’Reilly made a appearance on conservative media outlet Newsmax TV yesterday via Skype, and provided host John Bachman with his takeaways from Comey’s testimony, his new book, and matters pertaining to his departure from Fox News.

TVNewser reports O’Reilly said he should have dealt with his exit from the network differently and fought back against groups pushing advertisers to pull out of his program.

He complimented former FNC colleague Sean Hannity on how he has handled controversies swirling around him and his program.

“In hindsight, Sean did it the right way. I should’ve done it that way, but I didn’t,” O’Reilly said.

The former Fox Newser is blaming “leftist forces” for his departure from Fox News, saying: “This was no accident our sponsors were attacked. This is very well organized. They tried to with Hannity. Hannity actually fought back. I didn’t. I should have. For reasons that I cannot explain now, I did not.”

Myriad groups have been trying to persuade brands to pull their spots from Hannity’s program in recent weeks after he continued to push an unverified conspiracy theory that former DNC staffer Seth Rich leaked DNC emails to WikiLeaks, and that his murder was ordered by the Clintons as a result of that action.

“Hannity knows they’re looking to get him,” O’Reilly continued. “He said it. But I admire Sean, and I admire how he handled situation, because he brought it directly to the folks and the sponsors stopped. He lost a few, but they stopped. So, he was successful in fighting off the attack. But there will be more.”

CNN Dumps Reza Aslan Over Profane Trump Tweet

Reza Aslan
CNN announced Friday that it would not be moving forward with a second season of "Believer With Reza Aslan," a series hosted by the religious scholar that explored faith and religion worldwide.

Though the statement provided by a CNN spokesperson didn't elaborate on why the network had reached that decision, it did state, "We wish Reza and his production team all the best."

According to The LA Times, the news comes just days after Aslan's  now-deleted tweet saying, "This piece of [crap] is not just an embarrassment to America and a stain on the presidency. He's an embarrassment to humankind."

Aslan's remarks were tweeted June 3, shortly after London terrorist attacks sparked Trump's tweets about the importance of a "travel ban."

A day later, Aslan apologized for his choice of words in a statement shared on Twitter.
"When in the first few minutes of the terror attack in London, the President of the United states tweeted about his travel ban, I lost my cool and responded to him in a derogatory fashion," Aslan said. "That’s not like me. I should have used better language to express my shock and frustration at the president’s lack of decorum and sympathy for the victims of London. I apologize for my choice of words."
Aslan released a statement Friday regarding the cancellation of "Believer," in which he implied that the nonrenewal was indeed connected to his criticism of the president.

Aslan went on to clarify that he is not a journalist, but a social commentator and scholar, and agrees that it was time for him to part ways with CNN.

Ending With Cosby's Own Words, Prosecution Rests

Reporters covering Trial (Reuters)
By Joseph Ax | NORRISTOWN, PA.

(Reuters) -- Jurors at Bill Cosby's sexual assault trial on Friday saw the entertainer's own sworn statements that he gave young women sedatives before engaging in sexual activity with them.

Pennsylvania prosecutors completed their case against Cosby after five days of testimony aimed at portraying the comedian as a serial predator.

The trial was set to resume on Monday with the defense's case. Cosby, 79, previously said he does not expect to testify, though his spokesman Andrew Wyatt said that could still change.

Cosby entering court Friday (Reuters)
The jury in Norristown, Pennsylvania, saw excerpts from a deposition Cosby gave more than a decade ago in which he acknowledged obtaining seven prescriptions for the sedative Quaalude in the 1970s so he could give them to women.

"Was it in your mind that you were going to use these Quaaludes for young women that you wanted to have sex with?" Cosby was asked.

"Yes," he answered, though he denied ever doing so without their knowledge. Cosby said he avoided taking the drug himself so as not to become "sleepy."

Cosby is charged with drugging and sexually assaulting Andrea Constand, a former administrator at Cosby's alma mater, Temple University, at his Philadelphia-area home in 2004.

Constand has said Cosby suggested that the pills, which she said left her barely conscious and unable to resist, were herbal.

Dozens of women have leveled similar accusations against the star of the 1980s television comedy "The Cosby Show." All but Constand's are too old to support criminal charges.

Cosby has denied all the allegations.

The prosecution's key witnesses, Constand and another accuser, Kelly Johnson, testified that Cosby gave them unidentified pills to help them "relax."

Together with Cosby's admissions regarding the sedatives, prosecutors hope the jury will conclude that Cosby employed a familiar pattern with Constand: offering mentorship to a younger woman and then using drugs to facilitate a sexual assault.

In depositions taken during Constand's civil lawsuit in 2005 and 2006 and presented at trial on Friday, Cosby said he gave her Benadryl before they engaged in what he described as consensual sexual conduct.
Defense lawyers have focused on discrepancies in Constand's and Johnson's accounts. They have also emphasized that Constand maintained frequent contact with Cosby following the incident, which Constand has said was necessary for her job.

Prosecutors on Friday called a psychologist, Veronique Valliere, to explain why sexual trauma victims sometimes have trouble recalling details and act in ways that can appear illogical.

But Cosby lawyer Brian McMonagle showed jurors a Facebook post after Cosby's case was bound over for trial in which Valliere wrote, "Victory! The case goes on."

"You're biased in this case, aren't you?" McMonagle said.

"I don't think so," Valliere replied.

June 10 Radio History

➦In 1895...actress Hattie McDaniel was born in Wichita Kansas.

In the 1910s she was a band vocalist, then began playing increasingly assertive maid roles on the big screen, culminating in the supporting-actress Oscar for her ‘Mammy’ in Gone With The Wind (1939), the first African-American to be so honored.  She played on the “Amos and Andy” and Eddie Cantor radio shows in the ’30s and ’40s, and had the title role in her own radio show “Beulah” (1947-51), which she also played on TV (1950-’52) until her death from  breast cancer Oct 2, 1952 at age 57.

➦In 1924…NBC Radio broadcast the first political convention when the Republicans convened in Cleveland, Ohio.

➦In 1931...In a country-music milestone, Jimmie Rodgers records in a Nashville studio with gospel harmony legends The Carter Family.

➦In 1985...gravel-voiced sportscaster Bob Prince, for 28 years the radio play-by-play man for baseball’s Pittsburgh Pirates, many of them during the team’s hey day, lost his battle with mouth cancer at age 68.

➦In 1995…Lindsey Nelson - Voice Of The NY Mets died of Parkinson's disease.

Lindsey Nelson
He spent 17 years with the New York Mets and three years with the San Francisco Giants. For 33 years Nelson covered college football, including 26 Cotton Bowls, five Sugar Bowls, four Rose Bowls, and 14 years announcing Notre Dame games. He is in 13 separate Halls of Fame. Fans remember a talented broadcaster, an expert storyteller, and a true sports enthusiast.

Nelson began his national baseball broadcast career as one of Gordon McLendon's radio announcers for the Liberty Broadcasting System, which primarily did recreations of games. After a stretch as an administrator with NBC Sports, he began doing the network's baseball broadcasts in 1957. He also broadcast college football, NBA and college basketball, and professional golf and tennis during his NBC tenure.

In 1962, he was hired as the lead broadcaster by the expansion New York Mets, and for the next 17 seasons did both radio and television with Ralph Kiner and Bob Murphy. All three were eventually inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.

➦In 2000...broadcast journalist Judd Rose, who built his reputation at ABC before becoming a CNN anchor, died from a brain tumour at age 44.

Friday, June 9, 2017

L-A Radio: Radio Disney Country Launches

Radio Disney Country today has expandedits multiplatform country music offering with the launch of KRDC 99.1 FM, it was announced today by Phil Guerini, vice president, Music Strategy, Disney Channels Worldwide and general manager, Radio Disney Network.

In addition to the launch on FM, beginning today, Radio Disney Country will also be available on iHeartRadio, TuneIn, and as curated playlists within Spotify and Apple Music, further expanding its reach through diverse platforms on which audiences are consuming music. Radio Disney Country also launched a account (@RadioDisneyCountry) today building upon its strong consumer engagement across top social media platforms including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat and YouTube. Radio Disney Country will continue to be available on the Radio Disney app, as well as AM 1110 Los Angeles (formerly Radio Disney).

KDIS 1110 AM (50 Kw-D, 20 Kw-N, DA2)
In making the announcement, Guerini said, “As country music continues to deliver some of the biggest artists in music today, we are broadening the reach of Radio Disney Country through both terrestrial and digital extensions of its brand.”

K256CX 99.1 FM (240 watts)
To celebrate the launch of KRDC at the ultimate destination for country music, Kelsea Ballerini, Hunter Hayes, Bailey Bryan, Scotty McCreery, Tegan Marie and Temecula Road today joined Radio Disney Country host Betsy Spina on the Radio Disney Country Stage at CMA Music Fest’s Xfinity Fan Fair X for a countdown event streaming live on Radio Disney Country’s Facebook. KRDC on Translator K256CX 99.1 FM and AM 1110 (formerly KDIS).

SiriusXM Invests $480M In Pandora

SiriusXM and Pandora today announced an agreement under which SiriusXM will make a $480 million strategic cash investment in Pandora.

CNBC is reporting the partnership came together after a Sirius offer to buy the full company was rejected by Pandora, sources told CNBC. The chairman role for Pandora is likely to be filled by Sirius CEO Jim Meyer or Liberty Media CEO Greg Maffei after the investment agreement closes, the sources said.

Under the terms of the agreement, a subsidiary of SiriusXM will purchase an aggregate of $480 million in newly issued Series A convertible preferred stock of Pandora. SiriusXM purchased $172.5 million of Series A preferred stock upon execution of the agreement and has agreed to purchase the balance of the Series A preferred stock at a second closing. The Series A preferred stock will represent a stake of 19% of Pandora's currently outstanding common stock and a 16% stake on an as-converted basis.

The Series A preferred stock is convertible into common stock at a purchase price of $10.50 per share. The conversion price of the Series A preferred stock is approximately a 14.2% premium to Pandora's volume weighted average price for the 20-day period preceding June 9, 2017. The Series A preferred stock will bear a 6% cumulative dividend, payable in cash, accretion of the Series A preferred stock or a combination thereof.

Through this agreement, SiriusXM is making a strategic investment in the leading U.S. provider of ad-supported digital radio. With a loyal quarterly audience of nearly 100 million listeners in the U.S., Pandora is by far the leading player in the burgeoning digital audio advertising market. The capital provided through the SiriusXM investment will allow Pandora to make targeted investments and capitalize on opportunities to build on its position in the streaming radio business.

Jim Meyer
Jim Meyer, Chief Executive Officer of SiriusXM, said, "This strategic investment in Pandora represents a unique opportunity for SiriusXM to create value for its stockholders by investing in the leader in the ad-supported digital radio business, a space where SiriusXM does not play today. Pandora's large user base and its ability to provide listeners with a personalized music experience are tremendous assets. With its strong technology and new product offerings, we believe there are exciting opportunities for Pandora to accelerate its growth and increase value for Pandora and SiriusXM stockholders."

"Liberty Media (LMDIA) has long recognized the strength of the Pandora brand and the opportunities in the ad-supported digital radio market," said Greg Maffei, Chairman of the SiriusXM Board of Directors and Chief Executive Officer of Liberty Media Corporation (FWONK). "We are very supportive of SiriusXM's strategic investment."

Greg Maffei
When the transaction closes, three individuals designated by SiriusXM will be named to the Pandora Board of Directors. One of those individuals will serve as Chairman and SiriusXM designated directors will serve as select Board committee representatives. With these appointments, the Pandora Board will be expanded to consist of nine directors.

"Pandora's Board and management team are committed to driving stockholder value and have carefully evaluated alternative strategies as part of the process disclosed on May 8," said Tim Leiweke, member of Pandora's Board of Directors. "We are pleased that the conclusion of that process resulted in a major investment by SiriusXM. With this investment, we have the backing of one of the media industry's most successful investors and significant capital to accelerate growth. Pandora is now poised to advance to the next stage of the company's lifecycle. Lastly, this transaction ensures that Pandora stockholders get the benefit of additional capital from an important strategic investor who can help enhance stockholder value."

"The investment from SiriusXM infuses resources to help Pandora continue to grow and innovate," said Pandora CEO and founder Tim Westergren. "With the strategic review behind us, and a strong balance sheet, we look forward to focusing on business execution and the optimization of our strategy."

iHM Extends Debt Exchange Offer For Sixth Time

iHeartMedia has extended for the sixth time the deadline for its $14.6 billion distressed debt exchange offer.

According to the San Antonio Express-News, the deadline, scheduled to expire Friday, was extended to 4 p.m. June 23. Terms of the debt-exchange offer were not changed in the deadline extension Thursday.

The company has been conducting negotiations with its large lenders and bondholders since the offer was first issued on March 15.

The radio and billboard giant is trying to refinance about $8.3 billion in bonds and about $6 billion in loans. The debt-exchange terms call for various discounts on the debt and pushes out maturities by two years.

The company has $316.5 million in debt maturing this year, $324.2 million in 2018 and $8.4 billion in 2019. The company had $365 million in cash as of March 31.

iHeart warned in April that it might not last until February as a “going concern.”

Younger Demos Driving News Radio Listening Surge

News consumption has been at all-time highs across certain platforms over the past 18 months, as Nielsen’s most recent Nielsen Total Audience Report profiled.

And while TV viewing accounts for a significant slice of news consumption, Americans listened to more than 11.5 billion hours of news across Nielsen’s portable people meter (PPM) markets last year, up from 10.5 billion in 2015.

News has remained a hot topic across the radio airwaves this year, as the first quarter saw a continued surge in tune-in on news-formatted stations, building on the strong results of last year’s perpetual political news cycle.

For further perspective on the recent increases, Nielsen has  combined listening trends from all News/Talk (both commercial and non-commercial outlets), All News and Spanish News Talk stations across Nielsen’s PPM markets and trended the results of the past two years against the first quarter of 2017. This is the same lineup of stations used in the Nielsen Total Audience Report.

What jumps off the page to Nielsen is the difference in long-term growth and the share that news radio stations garner with different age groups.

News radio alone accounts for a fifth of all radio usage among adults 50 and older, which is virtually unchanged since 2015. Listening trends among Millennials (18-34) are at the other end of that spectrum: News radio makes up a much smaller portion of their radio usage, but share among this group has grown the fastest in the last two years. In fact, the first quarter share for news radio among this demo was 24% higher than in 2015 and 14% higher than in 2016. The growth story for listeners 25-54 was similar: first-quarter 2017 share was 19% higher than in 2015 and 12% higher than in 2016.

Friday's Hot Links..What Others Are Saying

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Phoenix Radio: Aaron Trimmer To Program For iHM

Aaron Trimmer
iHeartMedia Phoenix has announced Aaron Trimmer has been named Program Director for News/Talk KYFI 550 AM and Fox Sports KGME 910 Phoenix, The Biggest Names in Sports; and KYFI 2 (KOY 1230 AM), effective July 5.

Trimmer will work closely with on-air personalities and sales to oversee the station brands’ on-air and digital news programming, as well as local events and partnerships.

“We’re excited to have Aaron bring his experiences out West,” said Steve Geofferies, Executive Vice President of Programming for iHeartMedia’s West Division. “His track record speaks for itself, from brand execution to talent coaching, he’s a tremendous resource for our stations in the Arizona Region.”

Trimmer previously worked as the Program Director for Newsradio WRVA 1140 AM, Fox Sports WRNL 910 AM and Virginia News Network, where he worked with on-air personalities and sales to oversee the stations’ on-air and digital music programming. He also served as the Program Director for NewsRadio WHAM 1180 AM Rochester, WSYR 570 AM Syracuse, Program Director for News Radio WERC 105.5 FM Birmingham and Alabama Radio Network; and Program Director for NewsRadio WLAP 630 AM Lexington, KY.

KFYI 550 AM (5 Kw-D, 1 Kw-N)
“I am beyond excited to work with the iHeartMedia team in Phoenix,” said Trimmer. “There’s a tremendous amount of talent with their spoken word brands and I look forward to leading the team and community to new heights.”

Houston Radio: KHMX Adds Jason Cage For PM Drivde

Jason Cage
KHMX Mix 96-5 FM will launch a new afternoon show hosted by Jason Cage on Monday, June 12.

The show will cover all the latest pop culture and local news, interviews with the biggest artists in music today and help Houston transition from at work to the drive home. The show can be heard on-air, online at or via the mobile app.

“I have been a fan of Jason’s work for years! Winning is in his DNA! We are excited to add him to the KHMX team and cannot wait for the Houston community to meet him,” said Chase Murphy, Program Director, Mix 96-5.

"I've had obscene amounts of fun working with top notch CBS Radio teams in Chicago and Philly over the past 6 years and I'm thrilled to continue the run on KHMX Houston! Chase Murphy is an evil genius mastermind and I'm honored to be part of his plot. Thank you Erik Bradley, Brad Wright, Jeff Sottolano and Sarah Frazier for putting the pieces together," added Jason Cage, afternoon drive host, Mix 96-5.

KHMX 96.5 FM (100 Kw) Red=Local Coverage
The full Mix 96-5 line up kicks off with The Morning Mix featuring Sarah Pepper, Geoff Sheen and Lauren Kelly, 5:30 am – 10 am, followed by Chase Murphy, 10 am – 3 pm, and Jason Cage, 3 pm – 7 pm.

Jason Cage is a longtime highly rated on air radio personality whose show has been broadcasted on major radio brands nationwide.   With over a decade in the business, Jason understands what makes fun, interactive, memorable radio and the new skills required to touch listeners where they live on social media.   Jason's career spans from his hometown radio market, Huntsville Alabama to legendary station B96 in the third largest market in the country, Chicago.

Jason has landed coverage in print and broadcast outlets around the world, including Star Magazine and US Weekly and was named one of Cheeky Chicago's "Men of the Year."   Jason is an experienced radio talent coach, enjoys actively working with non-profits, event hosting and fitness.  He lives with his wife Heather, newborn son and a rescue dog named Porkchop.

Hutchinson KS Radio: Eagle Names Pat James OM For Cluster

Pat James
Eagle Communications/Hutchinson, KS, has named Pat James as Operations Manager for News/Talk KWBW 1450 AM / 98.5 FM, Country KHUT 102.9 FM, AC KHMY My 93.1 FM and all digital content including

James will also continue as morning host on KHUT-FM, a position he has held since he joined the company on March 1. Previously, James served as Program Director/Brand Manager of Connoisseur Media Wichita's KIBB-FM (BOB-FM) and KVWF-FM (Hank-FM).

"Since his first day at Eagle Communications, Pat has demonstrated the leadership we want in an employee-owned company," said Eagle Radio Hutchinson Market Manager Mark Trotman. "He's our type of people! We're looking forward to the places we can go in further service to keeping our community connected."

James' previous stints include co-hosting the "Cornbread Morning Show" on WIL-FM St. Louis and at KFDI-FM Wichita, where he was also APD/MD. James is a two-time CMA Personality of the Year winner and a two-time ACM Personality of the Year nominee.

"I am thrilled to join the Eagle Communications family and look forward to working with a talented staff that is committed to making great local radio every day for our community. As an employee-owned company, it's a refreshing and exciting environment to work in every day and I can't wait to help these stations and our company achieve even greater successes. I am grateful to Market Manager Mark Trotman and Eagle President/CEO Gary Shorman for this amazing opportunity," said James.