Friday, October 19, 2012

Knife Wielding Man Arrested At Illinois Radio Station

A man armed with a knife and with a history of mental health issues, was arrested Friday morning after causing a disturbance at a Christian radio station in Peoria, Il..

28-year-old Robert T. Trent was booked on charges of aggravated assault, unlawful use of a weapon and criminal trespass.

He was taken into custody at the WCIC building. He had been to the radio station in the past and was known to employees, according to police. 

There were no injuries.

Cockroach Gets LA TV Time

NBC4 Los Angeles reporter Robert Kovacik kept his cool during a live stand-up even tough a cockroach was running on his shoulders.

ESPN Affiliate Host Suspended For ‘Die’ Tweet

UPDATE 10/25/12: 97.1 The Fan's Scott Torgerson, who was suspended after he tweeted he wished ESPN's Desmond Howard would get fired or die, has now been let go by the Columbus outlet.

Original posting....

Scott Torgerson, a sports radio host at WBNS 97.1 FM  in Columbus, Ohio, was suspended for an offensive tweet about ESPN personality and former Heisman Trophy winner Desmond Howard.

According to The Huffington Post, Torgerson, co-host of "The Common Man & The Torg" on 97.1 The Fan (an ESPN affiliate) took to Twitter on Saturday afternoon to unleash his negative feelings toward the former Michigan star. He wrote:
"I wish Desmond Howard would get fired or die so I can watch Gameday again"
Togerson has since deleted the message.

President of WBNS 97.1 Dave Van Stone confirmed to the Associated Press that Torgerson has since been suspended.

Tina Talks ‘Newsweek” On Morning Shows

Tina Brown hit the morning shows today to spin yesterday's big news about Newsweek's print edition shutting down and being replaced at the end of the year by a subscription-based digital-only title called Newsweek Global. quotes Brown on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” "We just decided to take the plunge.”

"We decided that we wanted to embrace the future and not try anymore talk about the legacies of the past. It costs $43 million to print, manufacture, distribute, manage the distribution of Newsweek before you can even hire one writer or one editor. And that is just the most enormous millstone to deal with in a era where people are telling us more and more it's all about screens."

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

That said, Brown did acknowledge the more somber reality that the digital transition is going to mean laying off a yet-to-be-determined portion of her staff.

Tom Hanks Drops F-Bomb On GMA

On Good Morning America, Tom Hanks Friday blurted out a four letter word while talking with an accent. He was on the show to promote his upcoming film “Cloud Atlas”.  ABC issued a statement saying the show was edited for other time zone feeds.

WXTU Philly's Ken Medek Enters LMA

Ken Medek has entered in an LMA agreement to operate WAZL 1490 AM in Hazleton, PA.

Medek currently is waking up mornings at Beasley’s country WXTU 92.5 Philadelphia and for many years was a radio personality at CHR WKRZ 98.5 FM  and country WGGY Froggy 101 in the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre/Hazleton market.

Medek's KMCS Broadcasting LLC has entered into the LMA with Panorama Pennsylvania and intends to air continuous Christmas music starting November 3rd. 

On New Year’s Day, WAZL will start airing "Playing Anything We Feel” featuring hits from the 80s, 90s and today.  Medek will continue his morning show at WXTU.

Townsquare Adds 2nd New Morning Show In Grand Rapids

Kidd Kraddick is out.  Connie & Curtis are in. is reporting that starting Monday, Oct. 22, Today's Best Mix Channel 95.7 WLHT will debut a new morning radio show to wake up West Michigan. Connie & Curtis, most recently heard in Milwaukee and Madison, WI are replacing "Kidd Kraddick In The Morning", a nationally syndicated show out of Dallas, TX.

That makes two new morning shows from Townsquare Media in less than a month. Andy O’Riley and Dave Kaechele were announced as the new local morning show on Classic Hits WFGR replacing the syndicated "Bob and Tom Show" just two weeks ago.

Connie, originally from Michigan, and Wisconsin native Curtis will broadcast each weekday morning from 6 to 10 a.m. With a friendship that spans the past 12 years, they each feel their chemistry is something that will come through on their listeners' speakers.

In a statement, Channel 95-7 WLHT Program Director Tom Cook stated, “We're excited to bring "Connie & Curtis" to Grand Rapids. It was apparent that a team of their caliber would shake up morning radio in West Michigan. I can't wait to get started ... Let the fun begin!”

The show will be launched with a promotion that gives away five trips to Las Vegas.

Ted Turner: CNN Needs Less Fluff

Thursday on "CBS This Morning," Ted Turner, the founder of CNN and founder and chairman of the United Nations Foundation, joined Charlie Rose to reflect on his legacy, politics, his $1 billion philanthropic pledge and the causes he cares about.

Turner said his greatest success in business is CNN but in life, it is his family. "If you don't make a success of raising your family, it's hard to be a success at anything," the media mogul said.

Touching on the state of CNN as a news network today, Turner said there is "a lot I like about it, and there are a few things I would change. I'd like to see more emphasis on hard news and international news and a little less fluff."

Salem Wants To 'Reclaim America'

Syndicated Salem talker Mike Gallagher reports a great opening night Wednesday at Eisemann Center in Richardson, TX for Salem's "Reclaim America" tour.

Onstage with Mike is former US Senator Rick Santorum and fellow KSKY 660am The Answer hosts Mark Davis and J.D. Wells. Around a thousand people attended.

This was the first of a multi-city tour for Mike which includes Columbus, Detroit, Denver and Chicago - go to for details!

Gallagher and Sen. Rick Santorum sign copies of their respective books for hundreds of fans at the Reclaiming America/Talkers Tour in Richardson, TX last night.

Take Me Out To The Ball Game!

Mark Reardon & Scott Warmann are broadcasting live from Busch Stadium with former Cardinal Ricky Horton!

Men At MSNBC Make More Money Than Women

During an interview Thursday, Mitt Romney senior adviser Barbara Comstock told Andrea Mitchell that “we know here at MSNBC the guys get paid more" — and the MSNBC host replied, “We certainly do.”

Mitchell and Comstock were discussing the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act on “Andrea Mitchell Reports” when the Romney adviser said MSNBC has issues with fair pay for men and women.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

CBS Radio Looking to Avoid Station Sell Off

With CBS Radio acquiring Merlin Media’s WRXP for its WFAN-FM simulcast, now the question is what happens to its New York stations? Speculation almost immediately had CBS forced to sell off one of its seven radio stations (with the WRXP completed deal) and two TV channels.

But  according to Jerry Barmash at, CBS has filed an application with the FCC. CBS first addressed the Local Ownership Rule, stating:

“…The common ownership of eight radio stations, no more than five in the same service, is permitted in the New York Metro. Therefore, CBS’s acquisition of a controlling interest in WRXP complies fully with the FCC’s local radio ownership rule.”

There is also the Radio-Television Cross-Ownership Rule, under which CBS may have found its loophole.

“…The noise-limited DTV contour of WLNY-TV, whose transmitter is located in a distant corner of the New York Metro – on Long Island, some 50+ miles from the center of New York City – does not entirely encompass New York City, the city of license for all seven radio stations. Additionally, the relevant contours for all seven radio stations do not entirely encompass Riverhead, New York, the city of license for WLNY-TV.”

It’s a technicality, to be sure, as WLNY is available on satellite or cable throughout much of the tri-state area, and WLNY focuses on news stories from those regions.

Chicago: Pete McMurray Out At Merlin's i101

Merlin Media, the radio corporation that is said to be on life-support and busy looking for buyers, has released yet another staffer. is quoting  insiders as saying that longtime morning show host Pete McMurray has been released from the company right after ending his morning show Wednesday.

Since August, Pete McMurray has been the morning host on WIQI-FM 101.1, currently known as i101. Prior to that, McMurray was the morning show host on WLUP-FM for the last 5.5 years, until he was removed at the end of July to make room for Maxwell, a crony hire of Merlin Media CEO Randy Michaels and Operations Manager Jim Richards.

CR&M adds This is the second major on-air firing from Merlin Media's Chicago stations in less than a week. Late tast week, afternoon host Shark was released from WKQX-LP/Q87.7.

In typical Randy Michaels/Merlin Media fashion, Operations Manager Jim Richards Wednesday denied that Shark was released, claiming only that his hours had been cut. Of course, that was leaving out the fact that the hours were cut to zero, effective immediately, and that Shark was wished a fond farewell at that point last week. 

Merlin Media also denied that Pete McMurray was taking over mornings at i101 (McMurray did just that three weeks later) and that their stations were for sale (Merlin Media sold WRXP-FM to CBS Radio for $75 million less than two weeks later).

Elvis Duran: The Man Behind the Mic

Premiere Networks has inked the 50th affiliate for Elvis Duran and The Morning Show.  Recent affiliate adds for the popular CHR morning show include: WWPW (Power 96.1)/Atlanta, WRNW (97-3 Radio Now)/Milwaukee, WVMA (The New 105.3)/Norfolk and WZEE (Z104)/Madison.

His voice is known across the country.  For more than two decades,  Elvis Duran has dedicated his life to being the "Host with the Most," and "Master of the Mornings" on the top rated  "Elvis Duran and the Morning Show" at "Z100" in New York City.  Whether they're calling in one of their famous "Phone Taps", interviewing celebrities, dishing the "Sleaze" with Danielle,  or making "Greg T- The Frat Boy" repel down the side of a building, Elvis and the "Morning Crew" clearly know how to have fun, and bring listeners with them on the ride!

So what happens when the mics get turned off? Kristia Behr at  got a chance to chat with Duran to find out..

KB: What's it like working for THE biggest radio station in NYC?? Is there a lot of pressure that goes along with that?

ELVIS: No, it's actually the opposite. The pressure is off b/c we work for Z100.  It's such an institution, and our parent company gives us the tools to make it win. They have a lot invested in this place, not only on the "Morning" show, but everyone who works here.  But with all these toys, it makes it a lot more fun. 

KB: You've been at Z100 for so long, what's the secret to longevity??

ELVIS: Well, I will tell you I've tried to leave here several times.  I actually left for a minute to work in Texas again, but I was sucked back in. They won't let me leave! But that's really cool!  We've collected some really great people who work here, it's not just me, it's everyone here who works here in a 24/hr period. I've been here 24 years, I can't imagine working anywhere else.

Read More Here.

Back in June the Elvis Duran Morning Show got to interview CC CEO Bob Pittman.  The video showed-up just yesterday on Premiere Radio's YouTube channel.  Here it is..

Syracuse: 95X Morning Duo Walk

When Hunter Scott and Josh Grosvent decided it was time to leave their positions as co-hosts of Syracuse rock radio station WAQX 95.7 FM 95X’s morning show, they picked a late-October appropriate way to go out.

“We figured the most interesting way to do it was to be killed off by zombies,” Grosvent said told  Mark Bialczak at Wednesday, describing their final on-air scene Tuesday morning.

Afterward, the pair went to the office of Cumulus Syracuse general manager Shane Bogardus with the news that they’ve resigned.

Scott, who also had served as the 95X program director, and Grosvent had been the morning team at the Cumulus-owned station for two years.

Grosvent said the two are exploring other employment opportunities. Scott, who comes from the Midwest, is looking there, Grosvent said. Grosvent, who also is a comic writer who’s hosted a weekly Wednesday night improvisational “Walk Up Radio Show” at Wise Guys Comedy Club in Syracuse, said that’s on hiatus, as usual this time of the year.

Bogardus and Grosvent both said the resignations are not a stunt to promote Cumulus’ O’Zombie Crawl 2012.

Report: Talent Purge At K-Rock Syracuse

It's been a busy radio week in Syracuse.  Across town, Galaxy’s WKRL 100.9 FM KROCK reportedly dismissed three on-air personalities Wednesday, according to a posting at

Trusted sources tell that morning host Dex Mitchell, midday host / program director Nixon, and night host Candace Curby are no longer employed by Galaxy.  The purge comes less than 48 hours after the morning co-hosts at Cumulus-owned competitor 95X (WAQX)  suddenly walked off the job.

That leaves afternoon drive host Rainman with the distinction of being the sole full-time KROCK personality to survive the housecleaning. 

As of this morning, the KROCK website still listed Dex, Nixon and Candace among the on-air staff.

Tom’s Take:  Is this for real or is K-Rock looking for some PR?  Stay tuned…time will tell. 

Ellen K Re-Ups In LA

Ellen K reportedly has signed a contract extension thru 2015 with CC’sKIIS-FM 102.7 FM, Los Angeles.

Ellen has been at KIIS since 1990 when she was teamed with the legendary Rick Dees.

Ellen also continues her daily TV work as the host of her own segment "Ellen Ks' Inside Hollywood" on the KTLA evening news, all while enjoying her radio mornings with mega-star Ryan Seacrest on the top rated and globally syndicated "On Air with Ryan Seacrest". 

Ellen also finds time to do the live VO for the Grammys on CBS, the Screen Actors Guild Awards on TBS/TNT, as well as the narration for the huge UK hit "My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding" & " My Big Fat American Gypsy wedding" on TLC.

Additionally, Ellen is showcased weekly as the host of, a movie & lifestyle trend setting website, and occasionally squeezes in cameos on "Keeping up with the Kardashians" and "Days of Our Lives".

In May 2012, Ellen was honored with a star on Hollywood's Walk of Fame.

Brenly Leaving Cubs’ TV Booth

UPDATE Friday 10/19:  Bob Brenly accepted the job as the Diamondbacks’ TV analyst Thursday.

Original Posting...

Bob Brenly is leaving the Cubs' television booth and informed WGN-TV that he will not return for the 2013 season. Brenly, 58, just finished his eighth season with the Cubs.

"Working here in Chicago was one of the most enjoyable experiences of my professional career," Brenly told Wednesday. "The Ricketts family, everyone associated with the Cubs and WGN and, most importantly, Cubs' fans everywhere, will always be in our hearts, and [my wife,] Joan, and I wish nothing but the best for the organization moving forward.

"I was very blessed to have the best play-by-play man in the game as my partner for eight years and Cubs' fans are very fortunate to have Len Kasper as the voice of the Cubs," Brenly said. "I'll miss working with him, and we look fondly toward returning to Chicago in the future."

Brenly could transition into the Arizona Diamondbacks' broadcast booth. Arizona is looking for both a television play-by-play broadcaster and an analyst to replace the team of Daron Sutton and Mark Grace. The organization decided to not bring back Sutton, who was suspended for much of the 2012 season, and Grace, a former Cubs first baseman, who was arrested for his second DUI offense this past August.

"Obviously, I would be lying if I didn't say I reached out to Bob Brenly right away," D-backs team president and CEO Derrick Hall said last week. "Bob was my first call. We've had a few conversations. We just have to see if we can get creative to get competitive."

Brenly was a television analyst for the D-backs from 1998-2000 and managed the team from 2001-04, leading Arizona to the World Series in '01.

Hank Jr. Loud & Rowdy For Election

Conservative country star Hank Williams, Jr. is getting his own radio show just in time to weigh in on the presidential elections. The outspokenly gun-loving, liberal-hating singer is getting set to produce three two-hour radio shows that are slated to air in the weeks before Election Day.

Titled ‘Loud and Rowdy,’ the radio specials will feature news, politics, music, and Williams “speaking his mind,” a spokeswoman for the singer tells the Washington Times. Williams is apparently offering the program free to any station that wants to air it in an effort to get his message out to voters prior to the upcoming presidential election, according to

There’s no word so far as to the actual content of the shows, but it’s probably safe to assume Williams won’t be coming out in support of President Obama, whom he has attacked repeatedly in interviews and onstage at his concerts for his belief that the president is a secret Muslim who is plotting against America.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Cumulus Media Takes On The Savage Nation

Talk show host Michael Savage’s popular radio program “The Savage Nation” is going back on the air on a new network, according to

Beginning on Tuesday, Oct. 23, Savage’s show will air on Cumulus Media Networks, with more than 525 stations in 110 markets reaching 121 million listeners.

“The Savage Nation” will air live across the country Monday through Friday from 9 p.m. to midnight Eastern time, delivering his “incisive thoughts on politics, American culture, and traditional values,” Cumulus stated. “His famous ‘news, views and reviews’ will continue to inform and entertain millions of loyal and new listeners on powerhouse Cumulus stations.”

Savage's talk show left his previous network in September after he won a legal battle with his longtime employer that freed him to work with any station or network.

While it was on the air, “The Savage Nation” was the third most listened to radio talk show in the nation with more than 10 million weeklylisteners. In 2012 it became the No. 1 talk show on the Internet.

Read More Here. 

Beyonce Has Super Bowl Date

After word got out on Tuesday, the singer confirmed the news with a website post titled "Countdown to Touchdown," featuring a photo of her face, along with the text "Feb. 13 2013," the date of the upcoming Super Bowl. Earlier, a source told The Associated Press the Grammy-winning singer will take the stage at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in New Orleans.

The 31-year-old sang the national anthem at Super Bowl XXXVIII in 2004 in her hometown of Houston when the New England Patriots defeated the Carolina Panthers.

Moderator Crowley Kept Debaters On Their Toes

Nobody puts Candy in a corner, writes USA Today.

TV Screenshot
The candidates tried. Before Tuesday's town hall presidential debate, the campaigns voiced complaints in USA Today and elsewhere about moderator Candy Crowley's stated intention to ask follow-up questions and prod for better answers, saying it violated their agreement as to how the debate would work. In their view, Crowley's job was to call on the questioners in the audience and say "next" when time ran out.

They wanted a silent time-keeper. Instead, they got a moderator who was determined to allow the people gathered at the town hall meeting to get all their questions asked and answered fully and honestly — and was willing to assert herself to get it done.

Some will say she over-asserted herself. At one point already much-discussed in social media, she told Governor Romney he was wrong when he disagreed with one of President Obama's statements on Libya. Almost from the moment she fact-checked herself into the conversation, she tried to pull back out, but by that point she had probably already infuriated Romney supporters and debate purists.

Read More Here.

Also Must Read:
  • Could debate moderator Candy Crowley see her performance defined by one exchange? Click Here
  • Candy Crowley’s Debate Moderation Exemplifies Why Americans Do Not Trust Their Media  Click Here
  • Conservatives assail debate moderator Candy Crowley. ClickHere.

Dan Patrick TV Simulcast Ends On Fox Sport Net

New TV Partner To Be Named Soon

For months, speculation has run rampant that The Dan Patrick Show would eventually wind up nationally syndicated on NBC Sports Network weekday mornings.  The connections are obvious, according to the website

Patrick works for NBC on Football Night in America and took on a big role at this year's London Olympics.  Behind Bob Costas and Al Michaels, Patrick is one of the elite sportscasters at the network.  Bringing his radio show on board to boost the startup cable channel would only further cement that reality.

For NBC, Patrick's radio show fills an enormous chasm on weekday mornings currently filled with various hunting and fishing shows.  …NBC Sports Network desperately needs a flagship studio show that can reach a broader audience.  With DP on board, NBC knows it could have a reliable option to go against SportsCenter, The Herd, Mike & Mike, and First Take on a daily basis and do quite well.  For a large chunk of sports fans, having The Dan Patrick Show would give them a reason to go to NBCSN consistently for the first time.

Bubba Does A Reverse; Bashes Hulk Hogan

Radio personality Bubba the Love Sponge Clem took to the airwaves Tuesday morning, bashing Hulk Hogan a day after he announced two lawsuits over a sex tape scandal involving the once-best friends.

Though Clem's attorney said Monday he would not be commenting on the lawsuit, the talk show host went on his radio show and harshly criticized Hogan.  He called him a liar and said Hogan, whose real name is Terry Bollea, is using the situation to try and make money.

 "He's a one way piece of crap who doesn't care about anyone but himself … You're the ultimate, lying showman," Clem said Tuesday morning, according to

Both suits are in response to a recently released tape allegedly showing Hogan having sex with Clem's wife, Heather. Bubba said he was "brainwashed" into giving the blessing to the illicit encounter.

"I'm guilty of letting Hogan talk me into something," he said.

Hogan says he didn't know about a secret camera taping the whole thing. Bubba and Heather are named defendants in the first suit because Hogan believes they knowingly taped him and released the video.

On his radio show, Bubba said that's a lie. He says Hogan was in on the stunt and knew about the tape.

"Tell the truth. Tell the truth, buddy," he said on his radio show.

"You can't play the victim card like that," he later said. 

"The actions of the defendants were illegal, it was outrageous and it exceeded the bounds of human decency," Hogan's attorney, Charles Harder, said Monday at a press conference.

Read More Here.

More Videos Believed To Exist

Not only are there more Hulk Hogan sex tapes floating around, but the woman he was filmed having sex with also made X-rated videos with other men, say sources familiar with the videos.

On Monday, Hogan filed suit against his longtime best friend, radio host Bubba "The Love Sponge" Clem, his ex-wife Heather Clem and website Gawker, which posted a clip from one encounter between Hogan and Heather, taped in the formerly married couple's bedroom.

Hogan confirmed on the Howard Stern show on SiriusXM Satellite Radio that it was Heather Clem, now Heather Cole, a freelance writer and animal activist, in the videos and that he had sex with her on multiple occasions while she was married to Bubba. Hogan said Bubba encouraged him to have sex with his wife. Stern also said Bubba offered him sex with Heather.

Tuesday, Dan Gross at  spoke with someone who has seen multiple videos of Hogan and Clem together, and says there are more videos of Heather with other "B and C list celebrities" that are coming out now.

Another source says he saw footage on one of the surreptitious recordings of Hogan, all of which seem to have been taped in the Florida home of the Clems.

12.65 Million Watched Jump and Free Fall

4.2 million people watched daredevil Felix Baumgartner jump from space on Discovery Channel Sunday afternoon according to data from Nielsen, with an astonishing eight million people watching the jump live on YouTube (shattering a record for the site).

Alex Weprin at TV Newser reports all told 12.65 million people watched the jump live at the same time starting around 1:30 Sunday afternoon. For comparison, that is almost twice as many people than any of the MLB playoff games on TBS.

Discovery Channel and sister network Velocity had exclusive live TV rights, though other channels, such as CNN, played video from the jump leading up to and immediately after the jump.

RIP: WRBR South Bend’s “Reverend Ryno”

South Bend. IN radio DJ Ryan Haukaas, whose on-air name was Reverend Ryno, passed away Tuesday morning.

According to the South Bend Tribune, the 31-year-old died of a heart attack and stroke.  WRBR “The Bear” ran an audio montage in honor of Ryno through the day.

Their jocks were off the air for the day, but returned Wednesday.

WRBR posted a memorial to Haukaas. Click Here.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Gloomy Forecast At The Weather Channel

Report: Massive Layoffs...

The Weather Channel laid off dozens of employees today as part of a mass restructuring of the company. TVNewser hears that as many as 75-80 people were affected by the changes, with Weather’s Atlanta headquarters hit hardest, according to Alex Weprin at

In a statement, a spokesperson for The Weather Channel confirmed that it was eliminating positions across the company, and that approximately 7% of the workforce would be affected.

“In late September we began an effort to reorganize of our company into business units based around our customers and the products and services we create and deliver to them,” the statement says. “This effort was recently concluded and has resulted in the elimination of positions in several divisions of the company. With these organizational changes and our new structure, we are better positioned for future growth. Employees who are directly affected by this position elimination or reorganization are being informed and we are working closely with them through this period of transition.”

Cumulus Radio Buys WFME, NYC Market

Cumulus is expanding its footprint in the nation's largest market.

Cumulus CEO Lew Dickey announced Tuesday his company is buying WFME 94.7 FM in Newark/NYC and expects to close late in 4th quarter 2012.

Seller is evangelist Harold Camping’s Family Stations. Price was not disclosed. 

WFME (with 23,500 watts) becomes Cumulus' third station in NYC.  It also owns Hot AC WPLJ and Talk WABC.

As for format:  WABC on FM? Country? Alternative? Let the speculation begin!

Long-time market observer and radio media writer, VinceSantarelli weighed-in on a possible format:  “For my money, though, I see this as the perfect landing spot for the new CBS Sports Radio network set for launch on January 2, 2013. This would put the new network in the nation's number one market. It would also allow CBS to keep the WFAN AM and FM simulcast going.”

UPDATE 10/16 8pm:  As for the possibility of a country format. Consultant Mike O’Malley (former WYNY PD) offers:  “It's interesting how many times over the years country has been proposed as a format in the New York metro.   Certainly New Jersey has a good number of country fans. Townsquare's WPUR/Cat Country in Atlantic City generally does very well as does the Press' Thunder 106 in Monmouth-Ocean. The current-to-gold ratios and number of currents are somewhat different for these stations, though each occupies a good position in their respective markets.”

Meanwhile, is  reporting an industry executive familiar with the terms of Tuesday's transaction says Cumulus is paying $40 million for the station—a bargain compared to some recent deals in the market. Radio observers are speculating that Cumulus will either flip WFME to a rock station to fill the gap left by 101.9, or turn it into a country station—something the city hasn't had in years.

This NYC Cumulus buy could be just the tip of the iceberg of what’s to come. Media expert Jerry Del Colliano says he’s hearing Cumulus is considering buying what could be a significant number of CBS clusters.  Jerry adds CBS and Cumulus are already in bed with the CBS Radio Sports Network and now it appears CBS is considering unloading some markets to Cumulus. (Read more from Jerry at (paid subscription).

The NYC RADIO DISCUSSION message board is active, Click Here.

Tom's Take: Super signal just waiting for someone to come along.  As for format, I believe there's at least one that can be ruled out:  All-News!

What's Next For 94.7 FM in NYC? Our Bob Gale explores, plus he wonders if WLS-FM in Chicago is missing an opportunity, Click Here.

Glenn Beck Launches New Brand Of Jeans

Talker Glenn Beck is known for his fiery and controversial opinions, not his fashion sense, but his political views have launched him into the world of apparel. 

Beck has launched a brand of jeans produced by his company 1791, which was named for the year when the Bill of Rights was ratified. 

Beck was inspired to produce his own jeans when he learned that other companies, such as Levis, have their jeans made overseas. 

In a press release sent along with the ad for the 1791 jeans, Beck says, "How could something so inherent to the spirit and the history of this country NOT be made in the USA anymore." The 1791 jeans, which are made in North Carolina and Kentucky, don't come cheap, however, retailing for $129.99.

Opinion: Can Clear Channel Be Cool?

CEO Bob Pittman promises to reinvent radio. Closing down his own company would be a good start, accordin to Leonard.

From Andrew Leonard, staff writer at
Bob Pittman co-founded MTV, worked at AOL when it was relevant, if not cool, and now, reports Melissa Marr breathlessly in the Wall Street Journal, is back for an ambitious third act: he’s going to “reinvent” radio as the CEO of Clear Chanel, the giant radio station conglomerate. 
Exciting news, because if there’s one thing that the citizens of this great nation can agree on, it’s that radio generally sucks… 
But a close reading of Marr’s story suggests that to Pittman, “cool” actually means “a larger share of total ad spending.” And “reinvention” translates into little more than the company “using its scale to pitch for national business.” 
Which is precisely the problem. Because the most obvious reason why radio isn’t cool is the era of media consolidation in the radio business epitomized by Clear Channel — a fact not even whispered at in the Wall Street Journal. 
Clear Channel owns over 850 radio stations in the United States… 
Want to make radio cool again Bob? Break up Clear Channel.
Read More Here.

Tom's Take:  While I certainly empathize will with Leonard.  Pittman's job is to make money.

WQAM Miami’s Unique Farewell To TV Meterologist

Miami sports radio station, WQAM  chose a unique and slightly tuneful way to say goodbye to former WSVN meteorologist Julie Durda, who left the Miami FOX affiliate two weeks ago Friday.

According to, the tribute is sung/spoken by “Joe Rose Show” producer Zach Krantz and is loosely based on Elton John’s “Candle in the Wind”.  The song chronicles the sports talk radio show’s relationship struggles with the former WSVN meteorologist.  Joe Rose is both the host of the show on WQAM and a sports anchor at Miami’s NBC owned station WTVJ.

The song references a spat between Rose and Durda which caused the erstwhile meteorologist to delete her twitter account.  A string of tweets showing what appears to be Durda’s frustration with the sports radio hosts attention to her clothing is posted on

Tom's Take:  Is this a case of bullying?  What do you think?

Report: Brands Leverage Radio’s Unique Listener Loyalty

In a time when advertisers are looking to engage with consumers more deeply via social channels, radio is leveraging its legions of fans to remain a vital part of the media mix. National networks and local stations are using this bond to provide brands with ways to reach their listeners that go beyond the 30- or 60-second spot. Instead, they are using the kinship listeners feel for their stations and radio personalities to create content-rich programs that can be shared online and via social and mobile. 
Taking advantage of the strong followings stations have with their local audiences is nothing new. It’s long been the central point of differentiation for radio. What’s different today is how they are broadening that value into a multiplatform environment that puts AM/FM broadcast at the center of programs that can also include a station’s website, its Facebook and Twitter feeds, live events and even naming rights. 
“Our research shows how insanely pervasive radio is,” says media analyst Alice K. Sylvester, COO of Media Behavior Institute. “People identify with the station and its local identity and they stick with it. It becomes a bit of a badge for them. They become part of a community that shares the enjoyment.” 
To expand its presence in its hometown Chicago market, Allstate has gone far beyond simply running its “Mayhem” spots. Instead, it has set itself up to own different parts of local broadcasts, aligning its brand with relevant content. Traffic reports are branded with the “Good Hands” name on local CBS outlets. And the renovated street-level studio for WGN, the flagship Tribune Company station, in September was renamed the Allstate Showcase Studio, a deal that includes on-air naming recognition as well as an interior studio wrap featuring Allstate graphics.

New Talker Starts Up In Atlantic City

Local and syndicated talk hit the airwaves Monday when WENJ-AM 1450 gets a new format and new call letters, according to the Press ofAtlantic City.

The schedule of WPG Talk Radio 1450 will feature local talk radio host Harry Hurley being joined on the airwaves by national talk radio broadcasters Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity, among others. The station had been broadcasting sports programming as ESPN-1450, both owned by Townsquare Media LLC.

"The idea is that we are going to have a healthy blend of live and local (programming) that people enjoy and some of the biggest names in the country," said Hurley, who was named senior programming consultant for WPG. "Glenn Beck is not in this market. Sean Hannity is not in this market. People are going to notice."

The change brings an all-talk format back to 1450 AM  and returns classic radio call letters to the Atlantic City area. The WPG call letters were originally used by a municipal radio station operated by Atlantic City out of Boardwalk Hall in the 1920s and 1930s. The letters stand for "The World's Playground."

The new schedule includes "Hurley in the Morning" talk show from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. weekdays. The rest of the weekday schedule includes Beck from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Hannity from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m., conservative commentator Mark Levin from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., John Batchelor's news magazine from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. and "Red Eye Radio" from 1 a.m. to 6 a.m. "Red Eye Radio" is hosted by Eric Harley and Garry McNamara.

Unique Morning Show on NPR Thrives as Others Slip

J.EmilionFlores photo for NYTimes
NPR’s “Morning Edition” has one of the most peculiar formats of any morning show on radio or television: it’s split between the East Coast, with the co-host Steve Inskeep in Washington, and the West, with Ms. Montagne. The director cues Ms. Montagne through a videoconferencing system, and the co-hosts routinely add what they call “splits” to their scripts, so that they share the responsibility for introductions and interviews. “We are functionally sitting next to one another,” Ms. Montagne said, yet by staying on separate coasts, they are reflecting the audience’s geographic diversity.

The format is working for “Morning Edition,” the highest-rated news program on radio, which is holding onto its audience at a time when declines are the norm across the fractionalized media landscape. The program is adapting to the Web by letting listeners download episodes to music players and by taking photographers and videographers along on reporting trips.

“We want to replicate ‘Morning Edition’ in all the other spheres that our audience is likely to reach us,” said Madhulika Sikka, the program’s executive producer, who was promoted last week to oversee all of the NPR news division’s reporters and editors and help set its news agenda. The public radio organization will start a search for a replacement producer soon.

All this might surprise people who still associate “Morning Edition” with Bob Edwards, who hosted the program since its inception in 1979 and was pushed out by NPR in 2004, months shy of his 25th anniversary. The decision was widely criticized, and some claimed that the program would fail without him. But it has actually thrived, thanks in part to the co-host arrangement, which split up some of the work and freed Ms. Montagne and Mr. Inskeep to occasionally take the show on the road.

WPGC’s Pablo Scores Interview With First Lady

Michelle Obama, the first lady of the United States, said last week that the United States is in the “midst of a huge recovery” because of what “this president has done.”

In an interview, Pablo Sato, co-host of Pablo & Free on WPGC 95.5, a D.C.- metropolitan area hip-hop radio station, asked the first lady,  “Mrs. Obama, you know what, in your words, tell us what you think the state of the union is in right now?”

Mrs. Obama said, “I mean, we are seeing right now that we are in the midst of a huge recovery. Right?  Because of what this president has done.”

Monday, October 15, 2012

Report: Hulk Hogan Sues Bubba the Love Sponge

UPDATE Tuesday 6am: During a press conference in Tampa, Fla., lawyers for Hulk Hogan discussed the wrestling star's decision to sue a couple who allegedly filmed him having sex and the web site Gawker which posted the video.

A publicity firm which says it represents wrestling star Terry "Hulk Hogan" Bollea has called a press conference late Monday, saying the wrestler and two of his lawyers will speak on his decision to file lawsuits connected to the release of a video of him having sex with the onetime wife of his best friend, Tampa-based radio star Bubba the Love Sponge Clem.

Eric Deggans at the Tampa Bay Times reports the release says Bollea will file a federal lawsuit against the parent company of the gossip website Gawker, which posted clips of the video. Clem and his former wife Heather Cole would be the subject of a state court action. A representative from the firm said both lawsuits will seek damages for the video, which he says was made and released without his knowledge.

WSJ: Pittman Envisions New Life for Radio

From Marissa Marr at
(Bob) Pittman, 58 years old, fled the corporate world in 2002 after exiting the now-broken-up AOL Time Warner in a cloud of recriminations over the ill-fated merger. He retreated to his favorite pastimes, flying his planes and traveling. He later launched a private investment firm with his own money, backing start-ups including email newsletter DailyCandy and the tequila brand Casa Dragones. 
Now he's back in the building where he started MTV and where AOL Time Warner was based after its merger. Gone are the round spectacles and coifed hair from his AOL days, replaced by open-neck shirts and stubble. In an office adorned with models of the jets he has owned over the years and MTV Moonman awards, Mr. Pittman has been plotting a revival rooted in trying to make radio cool again and convincing marketers that radio deserves more than the 6% share of total ad spending it currently commands (television attracts around 50%). 
It is a challenge unlike anything else he has taken on. Whereas his involvement with both MTV and AOL occurred when they were fresh and new,Radio is one of the oldest of old media. Its future was bleak even before the Internet and satellite radio came along, but now traditional radio faces an array of digital competitors in streaming music services, from Pandora to Spotify. 
While most Americans still listen to radio in some form, radio advertising grew just 1% to $17.4 billion in 2011, according to the Radio Advertising Bureau. 
To make life even tougher, Clear Channel is laboring under $20 billion of debt, a legacy of a 2008 leveraged buyout arranged right before that year's financial crisis. The company reported $4 billion in losses for each of 2008 and 2009 due to onerous impairment charges. By 2011, the outlook improved but the company was still in the red to the tune of $302 million. 
"Bob's drawn to the challenge of a turnaround and working on something that most people think is doomed," said former MTV chief Tom Freston, who worked for Mr. Pittman in the early days of the music channel and is a fellow "Burner" (an attendee of the Burning Man arts extravaganza in the Nevada desert). 
"Bob's had more reincarnations than the Buddha."

RIP: Joe Lowe Of WOMI Owensboro, KY, Monster Truck Shows

WOMI Radio today reported the news that friend, colleague and Owensboro icon Joe Lowe passed away this morning from an aggressive form of esophageal cancer.

According to the station’s website “ Joe was best known for his distinct voice as the host of the Joe Lowe Morning Show on 1490 WOMI – it was truly the heartbeat of Owensboro. He also was a philanthropist, traveler, Monster Truck emcee, devoted family man, owner of Joe Lowe Productions, political activist, Guy Fieri doppleganger, avid Gambrinus patron and radio legend.

Joe came to Owensboro and started at WVJS in September of 1972. He worked there as well as at WOMI and WBIO. Joe did mornings at WVJS from 1972-2002. Around 1977 when the Executive Inn opened Joe formed Joe Lowe Productions which remained active until his death.

While at the Executive Inn Joe introduced virtually every major performer in the entertainment business that appeared in the Showroom Lounge until its closing. For a number of years, Joe was chairman of the Daviess County Republican party and was a member of the Owensboro Airport board.

He also spent over 30 years as an emcee for Feld Motorsports Monster Truck Shows. He traveled the U.S. and overseas in that capacity.

He and his wife Kathy married in 1971 and have two children, Sandy of Owensboro and Karen of North Carolina. His granddaughter, Brittani, also lives with Joe and Kathy.

Rolling Stones Announce Tour

Sunday A Busy Day For Joe Buck

A jogging Joe Buck made his way into AT&T Park around 10 minutes before the start of the National League Championship Series opener, ready to take on the second part of his unusual Sunday doubleheader.

Buck called the Giants-49ers football game for FOX at Candlestick Park earlier Sunday, and after the game ended at around 4:30 p.m. PT, Buck made the seven-mile trek in around 35 minutes on a police-escorted motorized cable-car trolley in order to be in the broadcast booth in time.

"I feel fine," Buck told as he waited for the elevator at AT&T Park to bring him to the broadcast booth. "I can't act like I'm playing in any of these two games or anything. I'm just talking, and hey, I can talk all night."

Buck said he had never participated in such a rushed two-game broadcast set, but that he wasn't going to miss a chance to call the opener to the NLCS when the schedule provided the opportunity.

Read More Here.