Saturday, August 24, 2013

Rush Limbaugh Talks About New Cumulus Deal

Transcript From Friday August 24: 
The last month, if you read Politico or anything that linked to Politico or CNN or ABC or anywhere else, you were reading that it was over for me. That I was bad news for broadcast stations. They could not sell advertising and all of this was because of me and the controversy I engender and therefore I wasn't gonna be gone overnight, but three to four years, and that's it.  Fini, totala completa, out of there, gone. Once and for all the left would be rid of me. 
We're on 600 radio stations, and the way that was gonna happen was that a group owner, Cumulus Media, was going to cancel their contract with me on 35 of their radio stations, and that was going to end my career because one of those 35 was WABC in New York and WLS in Chicago and WMAL in Washington and WBAP in Dallas and WJR in Detroit and other such large markets.  And once that happens, sayonara, I'm in everybody's rearview mirror. 
This has been going on for a year.  We have negotiations with every radio station that carries the program, every group owner.  These negotiations just happened to end up in the public.  But the media believed everything that was being said because they wanted to.  And the image, I guess, that was created was that my heyday was gone, it was over with, and if you listen to me now, you better like it while you can, because you're not gonna be able to at the end of the year, 'cause I'm gonna be gone. 
Well, let's see.  On either Wednesday night or Thursday, we completed our negotiations with Cumulus Media, and there will not be any changes.  I will continue to be on their radio stations for the next three years.  It was really never in doubt, but I don't want to do my own version of negotiating here.  The only change that's going to happen is that on January 1st we are going to leave WABC and move to WOR in New York.  My syndication partner is Clear Channel Communications, and they own WOR, and so we're gonna go to our own radio station in New York.  And this has been mutually agreed to. 
The bottom line is, no change for you.  Wherever you're listening to this radio show today, you're gonna be able to hear it on January 2nd, 3rd, whenever I get back from the traditional Christmas break.  There will be no interruption to you.  There will be no change.  The radio program is as strong or stronger than ever.  It will be everywhere you are used to listening to it now.  If you like this station, you get to keep this station.  I'm not gonna take this station away from you and force you to go to a new one.

Linda Ronstadt: “I Have Parkinson’s Disease”

Linda Ronstadt
Grammy-winning singer Linda Ronstadt has revealed to AARP that she has Parkinson's disease.

In an interview to be published next week on, Ronstadt, 67, says that she realized something was wrong eight years ago when she found herself unable to sing and didn't know why.

"I knew it was mechanical. I knew it had to do with the muscles, but I thought it might have also had something to do with the tick disease that I had," she said.

According to NBC News, Ronstadt says she also experienced shaky hands, but thought it was because of an operation she had on her shoulder.

"Parkinson's is very hard to diagnose, so when I finally went to a neurologist and he said, 'Oh, you have Parkinson's disease,' I was completely shocked. I wouldn't have suspected that in a million, billion years," she revealed.

Ronstadt, 67, said that she was diagnosed eight months ago, long after her symptoms first emerged. According to the AARP interview, she now uses a wheelchair when traveling, and has aid poles to assist her when she walks.

The singer has won 11 Grammys, two Academy of Country Music Awards, and even won an Emmy, for the PBS special, "Great Performances: Canciones de Mi Padre." She first came to prominence in the 1960s as lead singer of the Stone Poneys before embarking on a solo career. Her hits include "You're No Good," "When Will I Be Loved," "That'll Be the Day," "Blue Bayou" and "It's So Easy."

Saturday Aircheck: Rick Dees On 102.7 KISS-FM LA

From Jan 12, 1995

R.I.P.: WHO Morning News Anchor Dick Layman

Dick Layman
WHO 1040 AM Radio morning anchor Dick Layman died Friday, according to WHO Radio in Des Moines, Iowa..

He was 59.

Layman had been working at WHO Radio for 16 years, said WHO general manager Joel McCrea.

McCrea described Layman’s death as “sudden.” Layman worked Friday morning, McCrea said.

“There is a hole right now in the WHO Radio Family… a hole that won’t close easily and there is a chair in our newsroom that will be very, very difficult to fill,” WHO Radio news director Jim Boyd said in a statement: 
There is sadness to report today from the WHO Radio newsroom. Veteran morning anchor Dick Layman passed away today.  He was 59 years old. Dick Layman has been known throughout central Iowa for 16 years for that deep resonate voice that brought you the overnight developments and stories that you needed to know about to get your day started.  
Dick was also from the old school of broadcast journalism.  The school that said 'confirm and reconfirm the facts' before they would be put into a story for you to hear.  He cared about content and quality.  But he also was someone who take the most complicated of stories and boil them down to the bare fact so you could understand it...and to do so at times in 20 seconds or less. 
I remember an email I received from a listener just this year concerning Dick. The listener labeled Dick's delivery 'folksy.'  When you think about it, that is pretty accurate.  He presented the news as if he was talking to you at your kitchen table.  Sitting there with a cup of coffee, explaining about the latest goings on in state government, local affairs, or something from law enforcement.  But regardless the topic, Dick Layman gave it to you straight and you knew it was accurate.  I can even recall a time when I got a call in the newsroom and he had gotten a date wrong in some news copy. Dick was kicking himself for two hours because of it. He was that kind of professional, caring deeply that he got it right before it went on the air. 
There is a hole right now in the WHO Radio Family...a hole that won't close easily and there is a chair in our newsroom that will be very, very difficult to fill.  That's what happens when you have a man the caliber of Dick Layman on your team.  Our prayer's go out to his wife, Janet, and daughter Meredith.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Official: Rush Limbaugh Moving To WOR 710 AM

Rush made the announcement during Friday's Show.  He is leaving Cumulus' WABC (where Rush got his network start) and moving to CCM+E's WOR 710 AM.  He starts on WOR January 1, 2014.

According to Rush's announcement, he is staying with Cumulus Stations in other markets.


And no one doubts for a New York Minute that Rush Hannity will be joining Rush on WOR.

There has been no comment from Premiere Radio.

Rush and Sean back-to-back on WOR would directly impact the current afternoon line-up:

12 Noon Joan Hamburg

2 PM      Dave Ramsey

4 PM      Rita Cosby

Pandora Sez 2Q Revenue, Listening Is Up

Pandora Media shares tumbled more than 11% in after-hours trading before paring the loss to about 6% Thursday evening, highlighting investor uncertainty amid the music industry's fast-changing landscape.

Pandora's volatile stock has more than doubled since the start of the year, but investors bailed Thursday after the Internet-radio giant reported that its fiscal second-quarter loss widened and narrowed its third-quarter earnings guidance. For the third quarter, Pandora forecast adjusted earnings between three cents and six cents a share according to Hannah Karp at

Pandora's chief executive, Joe Kennedy, said in an interview that the after-hours volatility showed the market was sorting through the information. He pointed out that the company nearly doubled its mobile-advertising revenue for the quarter, and added that the narrowed earnings guidance was indicative of the company's desire to reinvest "a good part" of its earnings in ad sales and product development.

The company reported record revenue, up 58% from the year earlier period, and raised its third-quarter revenue forecast to $179 million from $174 million.

Joe Kennedy
But, writes Karp,  Pandora executives' bravado on recent earnings calls hasn't jibed with the more dismal picture the company has painted as it has lobbied lawmakers to reduce the royalty rates it must pay artists, record companies and music publishers for the digital use of their songs. Pandora uses a compulsory license from the government to use music digitally at rates determined by a panel of federal judges, and the rates it pays are generally higher than those paid by terrestrial radio broadcasters, which Pandora considers its closest competitors.

Pandora is involved in two separate lawsuits over royalty rates, one it initiated against the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, known as ASCAP, last year and the other brought by Broadcast Music Inc., or BMI, several months ago, following Pandora's purchase of a terrestrial radio station in a bid to qualify for the lower rates broadcasters pay to use music digitally. Court decisions aren't expected until 2015.

Total listener hours: Total listener hours grew 18% to 3.88 billion for the second quarter of fiscal 2014, compared to 3.30 billion for the second quarter of fiscal 2013.

Pandora To Remove Mobile Cap

Pandora has announced it will remove the 40-hour-per-month limit on free mobile listening effective September 1, 2013.

"We're pleased to once again maximize free listening for everyone on Pandora," said Tim Westergren, Pandora's founder. "The more than 70 million listeners that tune in every month will now have more time to hear the music they love, and thousands of working artists will reach more fans."

Pandora claims it’s able to make this change thanks to the rapid progress of its mobile advertising. According to eMarketer, Pandora is now the third largest generator of mobile ad revenue, behind only Google and Facebook.

The limit on free mobile listening was introduced in March 2013 to manage rapidly increasing royalty costs. While in place, this affected fewer than four percent of total monthly active listeners. The company continues to utilize multiple additional levers to carefully and effectively manage its content cost.

Tom's Take:  Translation..we're looking over our shoulder at iTunes Radio.

Report: Vin Scully Is Coming Back For Another Season

Vin Scully
The LA Dodgers are expected to announce Friday that Vin Scully, the finest broadcaster in baseball history, will return for a record 65th season in 2014, according to the LA Times.

Scully is 85.

The Dodgers never would kick him out of the broadcast booth, but he respects his audience too much to mumble around a microphone the way Willie Mays stumbled around center field for the New York Mets, in a sad close to a brilliant career.

So Scully takes it year to year. This year, he has been invigorated by the best reality show in town, the richest-to-worst-to-first Dodgers. Next year? Sign him up.

"It has been such an exciting, enjoyable, wonderful season — the big crowds in the ballpark, everybody is talking about the ballclub, and I really respect, admire and love the management — so everything just fell into place," Scully said.

"I really still enjoy it immensely. My health is good, thank God. So why not? And my wife said, 'Why not?' as well.

‘The Breakfast Club’Picked-Up In Four Markets

WKKV-FM 100.7 Jams has dropped the syndicated Steve Harvey morning show this week after hearing "from many folks who wanted a morning show that was a better fit" for the hip-hop station, according to Jeff Tyler, regional market manager for Clear Channel Communications.

Harvey's show has been replaced by a show called "The Breakfast Club," originating from Clear Channel sister station WWPR-FM Power 105.1 in New York. It is billed as "the world's most dangerous morning show.

The Breakfast Club's DJ Envy, Angela Yee, Charlamagne Tha God
"When you mix hit music, super star interviews ... and dynamic personalities ... you've got a recipe for a great Mainstream Urban Show," Tyler told Duane Dudek of the Journal-Sentinel in an email.

Harvey also has his own daily syndicated TV talk show and is host of "Family Feud."

Tyler said: "We have nothing but respect and appreciation for our relationship with Steve Harvey and his cast. He's a star and we understand there are people that enjoyed his show."

And in Tucson. CCM+E’s Rhythmic CHR Hot 98.3 KOHT Hot 98.3 FM is also picking up “The Breakfast Club” beginning Monday, August 26.

‘Club’ will also be airing on WOWI 103 Jamz in Norfolk and W281AB 104.1 The Beat in Birmingham.

Conservative Group Launches Anti-MSNBC Campaign

A conservative Tea Party organization launched an anti-MSNBC campaign Thursday that will involve sending emails to 2.3 million people urging them to dump the channel’s parent company, Comcast, as their cable TV provider.

According to THR, the campaign, from FreedomWorks, also includes an online video that focuses entirely on Al Sharpton, an MSNBC host the organization portrays as “a known race-card hustler” and believes its membership has a particular disdain for.

“By paying your Comcast cable bill, your money is helping to pay for Al Sharpton’s salary … Switch your cable provider now,” the video says.

Insiders say the video, or one like it, will also be turned into a TV commercial that will air in regions where Comcast is prevalent.

Read More Now

D/FW: KESN’s Randy Galloway “No Rehab For That Crap”

Randy Galloway
Dallas sports radio legend Randy Galloway didn’t mince words for the second time this week when he suggested what he thinks the justice system should do to the teens accused of the just-for-fun killing of an Oklahoma college baseball player: “shoot ‘em between the eyes.”

According to The Blaze, Galloway, the 70-year-old host of ESPN radio affiliate KESN-103.3 FM / 1540 AM’s “Galloway & Company” afternoon radio show, couldn’t hide his disgust after one of his co-hosts, Matt Mosley, detailed the successful drive to raise money to send the body of slain East Central University baseball player Chris Lane back to his home country of Australia.

“Bad story. Worst story of the week. Probably worst story of the year,” Galloway said of the murder in his thick southern drawl. “And you know what, I couldn’t believe it, on the text toy I got unanimous support in my proposal that even though these are 15-, 16-, 17-year-olds — and all being charged as adults, thank goodness, capital murder — but you don’t even go to trial: you just shoot ‘em between the eyes, all three of ‘em. I thought that might be a bit harsh for some people on the text toy. About 50 in there with, ‘yeah you’re right.’ ‘Cause you are right. There’s no rehab for that crap.”

Celine Dion Lists Florida Home for $72.5 Million

Celine Dion is putting her Jupiter Island, Fla., compound on the market for $72.5 million.

WSJ’s Alyssa Abkowitz has a peek into this week's Private Properties.

R.I.P.: Radio/TV Reporter Lew Wood

Lew Wood
Lew Wood, a former correspondent for CBS News who covered President John F. Kennedy’s assassination and later held the news anchor’s chair on the “Today” show, died on Wednesday at a hospice in Riverside County in California.

He was 84, according to the NYTimes.

The cause was kidney failure, his daughter Brigitte Wood said.

NBC hired Mr. Wood to succeed the longtime anchor of “Today,” Frank Blair, in 1975.

Wood, who earned a degree in speech and broadcasting from Purdue, began his career at WDZ-AM in Decatur, Ill., in 1952. A year later, he joined WSBT radio and TV in South Bend, Ind.

Read More Now

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Chicago Radio: WGN Gets Ready To Unveil WGN.FM

As in Freeform.Media.

The WGN.FM website now features a splash-page which contains a video of a dog licking the screen.  Ths audio is a song promising listeners a change...and urging visitors to 'clean your screens' because Jonathon Brandmeier is going 'free form'...coming soon.

UPDATE 08/23/2013:  Here's the promotional video posted today.

SiriusXM Unveils Service Lane Program

SiriusXM Radio has announced the launch of Service Lane, its new program that provides a complimentary 2-month SiriusXM subscription to qualifying customers who have their satellite radio-equipped vehicles serviced at participating auto dealerships.

The concept is simple, according to Sirius Buzz blog.  If a satellite radio equipped car is not activated, SiriusXM will activate a 2 month trial subscription.  The company already has deals in place with some 10,000 dealerships for trial subscriptions when a car is sold.  Now the company can tap into the repair side of the market.

“Service Lane is being embraced by dealers as a way to show their appreciation to service customers and build loyalty, providing dealers with the opportunity to give qualifying original and subsequent vehicle owners access to SiriusXM’s unparalleled lineup of commercial-free music, premier sports, comedy, news, exclusive talk and entertainment,” said Joe Verbrugge, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Automotive Remarketing and Retail Sales, SiriusXM.

For SiriusXM the benefits go beyond the obvious exposure.  The trial subscription allows the company to identify the owner of a satellite radio equipped car, something which has been challenging in the past.  The ownership data becomes a critical component as time passes, by allowing the company to market itself to the consumer directly.

News Corp. Unveils Web Ad Exchange

News Corp announced today plans to launch a global programmatic advertising exchange allowing marketers to collectively leverage the company’s leading online and mobile products and rich first-party data for programmatic buying and real-time bidding. News Corp properties will discontinue any remaining arrangements with third-party ad networks.

The News Corp Global Exchange, which will roll out over the coming weeks, comprises more than 50 leading web sites and mobile products, reaching millions of highly engaged subscribers and users worldwide via, and more, including BallBall, the recently launched mobile app.

News Corp Chief Executive Robert Thomson said, “Content aggregators would like to commodify our content, while data scrapers would like to aggregate our audience – the only way to reach the world’s greatest content and the most prestigious and lucrative audiences is directly through our digital properties. Third parties are no longer invited to the party.”

To support the private exchange, News Corp will be working with The Rubicon Project as its global sell-side platform. News Corp enjoys a strong direct relationship with its premier audience of affluent, engaged subscribers and users, while the exchange will allow advertisers to target a number of audience segments on a global scale via premium quality inventory and unique data.

Each business unit will continue to maintain their existing dedicated advertising sales teams in conjunction with the new programmatic exchange.

US Total Media Ad Spending Inches Up, Pushed by Digital

TV remains top ad medium in the country

eMarketer expects US advertisers to spend $171.01 billion on paid media this year, up 3.6% over 2012 spending levels, according to our most recent forecast of US ad spending.

 The 3.6% growth rate will be down somewhat from last year’s 4.3% increase, attributable largely to boosts from the Summer Olympics and a national election season. Spending growth for 2014 will be up, with help from the Winter Olympics, midterm elections and the FIFA World Cup, as growth rates hover between 3.1% and 4.1% for the rest of the forecast period.

Cardinals Voice Mike Shannon Resting After Surgery

Mike Shannon
As reported by the Cardinals' flagship radio station KMOX 1120 AM, Cardinals broadcaster Mike Shannon is recovering well this week after undergoing a successful surgical procedure on Monday to replace his aorta valve.

The surgery had been planned for some time, and according to the St. Louis Cardinals, Shannon is expected to make a complete recovery. He says through family that he expects to return to the broadcast booth before the end of the regular season.

"I would like to thank everyone for their prayers, heartfelt well-wishes and kind words. It means a lot to me," Shannon said to KMOX. "I'm looking forward to getting back in the booth and back to the game I love."

A rotation of Cardinals announcers will fill in for Shannon during his recovery. Al Hrabosky, Rick Horton and Mike Claiborne will be joining John Rooney in the radio booth through Sept. 23, the date Shannon plans to return.

Shannon played for the Cardinals from 1962-70 and won two World Series championships with the team (1964 and '67). He has been in the Cardinals' radio booth since 1972.

TV Guide: Ashton Kutcher Highest Paid Prime Time Actor

Ashton Kutcher
TV Guide has released its annual list of the TV stars who command the highest salaries and while Ashton Kutcher remains the highest paid actor in prime time, Judge Judy Sheindlin is the biggest performer overall with a $47 million per year salary. 

The list is divided up into six categories -- Drama and Comedy with salaries paid out per episode and then Reality, Late Night, News, and Daytime/Syndication with salaries being pay out annually.

Kutcher takes home $750,000 for each episode of his CBS sitcom while NCIS star Mark Harmon is the highest earner on the drama side with $525,000 plus a piece of the show's profits. 

The magazine predicts big changes in the coming year because sources are saying that Big Bang Theory stars Johnny Galecki, Jim Parson, and Kaley Cuoco are expected to seek new deals that would earn them $1 million per episode to keep their top-rated sitcom going.

In reality TV, Howard Stern leads the group with a $15 million paycheck for America's Got Talent.
Jon Stewart is the highest paid late night host earning between $25 - $30 million per year for The Daily Show.

Today Show host Matt Lauer commands $22 - $25 million making him the highest paid news anchor.

Beck: Chris Lane ‘Doesn’t Fit American News Agenda’

Glenn Beck
Over the weekend there was a disturbing report of college student 23-year-old Chris Lane. randomly shot dead by a gang of teens “just for the fun of it.”

Australian Lane was attending school in the United States on a baseball scholarship. He was killed while jogging in a small Oklahoma town Friday night after visiting his girlfriend. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

The teens responsible for mercilessly gunning down Chris Harper are James Edwards – 15, Chancey Luna – 16, and Michael Jones – 17, one of which reportedly told police that they committed the ruthless act “for the fun of it.”

Despite the reports that Lane was clearly targeted for an act of senseless violence, Glenn Beck highlighted the lack of outrage from the media Wednesday morning on radio, noting the hypocrisy between the killing of Australian student Chris Lane and the Trayvon Martin coverage.

R.I.P.: Oregon Radio Broadcaster Cal Brady

Cal Brady
Long-time North Coast radio broadcaster and station owner Cal Brady died Monday from liver and kidney failure.

According to the, Brady founded and owned Calcomm Stations Oregon, which operates Seaside's KQCB 94.9 FM. Brady also hosted a weeknight radio program called “Night Train” on the station.

Brady, who maintained residences in both Astoria and Southern California, died in his Los Angeles-area home with his wife, Jody Miller, at his side after a brief but severe illness.

Brady had been in and out of the hospital for about a month and "full time for the past week," said Dennis Brodigan, who worked at KQCB with Brady.

R.I.P.: Kentucky Broadcaster Don Sheridan

Don Sheridan
Longtime Morganfield, KY radio broadcaster Don Sheridan, a fixture in his community and Union County sports, died Tuesday after a battle with cancer.

He was 80, according to

Sheridan spent 50 years with WMSK 101.3 FM /1550 AM in Morganfield, including serving as station manager and the voice of Union County High School Sports in addition to other roles at the station.

He was inducted into the Kentucky Broadcasters Association’s Kentucky Mic Hall of Fame in 2008 and was among the first inductees in the Union County Sports Hall of Fame.

 “Don shaped the Union County radio station from the beginning, and his spirit will always be felt at WMSK,” the radio station said in a statement announcing his death.

“Don wasn’t just a radio veteran of 50 years,” WMSK said. “He was a man filled with compassion, humor and passion for his work and for those he worked with. For us at WMSK, he was a mentor, a leader and, most importantly, a friend.”

R.I.P.: Michigan Radio Broadcaster Bob Dyer

Bob Dyer 1998
For a whole generation of Michigan baby boomers, Bob Dyer was a cultural icon.

Dyer, a WKNX-AM Saginaw, disc jockey, was one of the first in the country to introduce The Beatles to the airwaves. And with Dick Fabian, he brought the music home, hosting dances throughout the region with performers including Simon and Garfunkel.

Dyer, who with Fabian was named in June 2013 to the Michigan Rock and Roll Legends’ Hall of Fame, died Sunday morning, according to

He was 85.

“Bob was very special to me,” said Fabian, who came to WKNX from Lansing because he loved the Beatles. “He welcomed me in, and we became instant friends. We were more than business partners; we had a lot of respect for each other.”

Born in Toledo, Ohio, Dyer came to Saginaw in 1950, back when Little Jimmy Dickens’ Down Home Boys was the house band in the second-floor WKNX studios.

Ready More Now

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Boston Radio: Kevin Graham New Brand Manager At WEEI

Kevin Graham
Entercom Boston announced today that it has hired Kevin Graham to lead WEEI 93.7 FM as their new Brand Manager. Graham comes to Boston from 1320 KFAN in Salt Lake City, where he served as Program Director and afternoon drive co-host.

Graham will begin work at WEEI in early September.

One of the original architects of 1320 KFAN, Kevin Graham went on to a successful programming career assembling and building sports stations in Columbus, Pittsburgh, ESPN Radio New York City, Detroit and Salt Lake City. He returned to KFAN again in 2012 to re-launch the station serving as Program Director and host of the Gunther and Graham afternoon show. Graham also has extensive experience in the digital sports arena assisting in building in Phoenix and as the Founder/Editor of

“WEEI is more than a radio station; it is an entire sports ecosystem. From our on-air talent to Red Sox play-by-play to, where we had 1.4 million unique visitors just last month, WEEI is a more complete sports brand than ever before,” said Entercom General Manager Jeff Brown. “We are thrilled to announce today that Kevin Graham will lead WEEI as our new Brand Manager. His background both in front of and behind the mic, along with his years of digital sports experience made him the best choice to lead WEEI. Kevin will bring a fresh perspective to the entire WEEI team and our complete package of digital sports assets.”

“I am honored and excited to join the WEEI team. WEEI is one of the most recognizable and powerful sports radio brands in the country,” said WEEI Brand Manager Kevin Graham. “With great resources, amazing talent, and one of the best digital brands in sports, the sky is the limit. I can’t wait to get started, especially with the Red Sox in the midst of such a great season.”

R.I.P.: Beatles Concert Promoter Sid Bernstein

Sid Bernstein
The man who brought The Beatles to America and sparked the 'British Invasion' has died.

Music promoter Sid Bernstein has passed away today, aged 95.

Bernstein got the Fab Four their gig at Carnegie Hall in New York after their appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show in February 1964 and Bernstein also booked them at Shea Stadium.

He also booked such top acts as Jimi Hendrix, Judy Garland and the Rolling Stones. He worked with Judy Garland, Duke Ellington and Ray Charles and promoted Dion, Bobby Darin and Chubby Checker.

Bernstein was an early backer of ABBA, setting up the Swedish group's first U.S. appearances.

Fresno Radio: Greg Hoffman Lands Mornings At KSEQ

Well, that didn’t take long.  Greg Hoffman, fired last week by Clear Channel’s KBOS B95 Fresno, has already landed on his feet.  (See original posting)

Buckley Radio’s Top 40 KSEQ Q97.1 FM Fresno has hired Hoffman for mornings starting Sept. 9.

KSEQ GM John Starling commented, "Greg is a veteran radio personality and programmer. I’ve always admired his incredible passion for our community. We are thrilled to have someone of his talent and experience join Q97.1 as Morning Show Host."

Hoffman had been at B95 — for more than 17 years as program director and on-air talent, including being a co-host for the "Juice Crew Morning Show" for a dozen years.

His morning show partners, Andre Covington and Carmen, are still with the station.

Chicago Radio: Reports..Steve Cochran Returning To WGN

Steve Cochran
Chicago radio listeners will soon hear Steve Cochran full-time on WGN 720 AM — and a bit of “Kathy and Judy” — as the station makes some big changes.

Cochran joined WIND-560 AM in 2011 and later left to freelance for WGN.

Two sources with knowledge of the deal confirmed to the Sun-Times that Cochran will replace Jonathon Brandmeier as the station’s morning host. Brandmeier’s last day will be Friday. He will move to an online presence.

WGN general manager Jimmy de Castro told the Sun-Times that some media reports regarding a lineup shakeup “got it wrong” but said he could not yet confirm or detail programming changes.

Fan favorites Kathy O’Malley and Judy Markey also are making a comeback Sept. 14 for a two-hour show running 10 a.m. to noon on Saturdays, according to Markey.

Kathy and Judy
Markey said she believes de Castro’s vision and lineup change will help renew the station: “It’s a great move to get people to understand that WGN really cares about the listeners, instead of the Randy Michaels thing where he’s just putting old friends in new places.”

Veteran Chicago broadcaster Bob Sirott on Monday announced that he’s leaving WFLD-Channel 32 to return full time to WGN-AM with his wife, Marianne Murciano. Sirott said the show will “probably be a daytime shift” Monday through Friday.

"I'm excited to be joining Tribune Broadcasting full time," Sirott told media write Robert Federthis week. "I'm grateful to Fox TV executives for the terrific opportunity they gave me three years ago to anchor the 9 p.m. news with Robin Robinson. The chance to work for Larry Wert and Jimmy deCastro's new teams at WGN was just too good to pass up."

Read More Now

Here is the expected new weekday line-up for WGN Radio:
5:00am-  Steve Cochran
9:00am-  Bill Leff
Noon-  Bob Sirott & Marianne Murciano
3:00pm- Garry Meier
7:00pm- David Kaplan
10:00pm- Pete McMurray
1:00am-  Nick Digilio

Chicago Radio: DeCastro Vows ‘No More Taped Shows’

Anticipated changes at WGN 720 AM come not long after de Castro announced he’d reunite with Tribune Co.’s president of local broadcasting Larry Wert in May. The duo ruled Chicago’s radio roost back in their days at the Loop WLUP-97.9. WGN-AM personalities Garry Meier and Jonathan Brandmeier, and Steve Dahl are Loop alums as well.

Could Dahl be in the mix for the station’s new lineup?

Steve Dahl
“No one has made me an offer I can’t refuse, and I’m presently very content growing my podcast network every day,” Dahl told the Sun-Times via email.

De Castro recently said the AM station was in need of change: “We need to be the station that’s newsbreaking. We are live, local 24/7. No more taped shows. We will be doing what Chicagoans are asking and conversing about and telling us about. That will be the content of the station.”

For years, WGN-AM has struggled to increase ratings in key demographics, particularly among listeners in the advertiser-coveted age bracket of 25 and 54.

Tribune Could Be Looking To Buy Some FMs

Jonathon Brandmeier
Jonathon Brandmeier may be off terrestrial radio, but that could change.

According to Chicagland Radio & Media, Chicago radio superstar Brandmeier has been the morning show host for WGN-AM since late December 2011. While overall ratings have been strong, Brandmeier was not able to bring a slightly younger demographic to the AM station, as originally hoped. More serious listeners did not care for his fun, loose, and hyper-paced show. Longtime WGN Radio fans wanted a return to the lighter type of talk show that the station has long been famous for. They will soon be getting just that.

Brandmeier is far from done with Tribune Broadcasting, however. Since earlier this year, Tribune Broadcasting has been rumored to be aggressively looking to pick up more radio stations, including at least one more in Chicago.

According to CR&M, it is widely believed that one of the many reasons Tribune Broadcasting brought aboard Jimmy de Castro this past spring as WGN Radio's new President and General Manager was for his premier talents in acquiring radio stations.

Among the stations rumored to be in Tribune Broadcasting's sights are Merlin Media's WLUP-FM (a station previously operated by Jimmy de Castro and Tribune Broadcasting President Larry Wert) and WIQI-FM.

Tribune Broadcasting would have some federal regulations concerning newspaper/TV/radio ownership to work around, but it appears a plan is in place to help leap over that hurdle.

Twin Cities Radio: Lauren MacLeash Let Go By Clear Channel

Lauren MacLeash
Lauren MacLeash, longtime KTCZ Cities 97 program director/DJ and the force behind the popular “Sampler” charity series, was let go by Clear Channel Radio on Monday, according to The Star-Tribune.

“The only thing I can tell you is she is gone,” said Mike Crusham, Clear Channel’s market manager for the Twin Cities.

It was believed to be a cost-cutting move but Crusham said the company does not comment on personnel decisions.

MacLeash, who had been with Cities for nearly 20 years, was also program director for Kool 108 and Clear Channel stations in other markets. She was widely regarded as one of the most influential programmers in the AAA format (adult rock, essentially) in the country.

However, in the past year or so, Cities 97 has been leaning more toward a Top 40 or contemporary hits format, playing the latest hits by Pink, fun. and Robin Thicke and eschewing its old standbys like Dave Matthews Band, John Mayer and David Gray.

Rich Davis, program director for Clear Channel’s KDWB, will add the programming of Cities 97 to his plate. Gregg Swedberg, VP for programming, will handle Kool 108 programming and continue with country station K102.

MacLeash is married to KFAN personality Chris Hawkey.

Bay Area Radio: Chuy Gomez Talks Firing

Chuy Gomez with Fernando (right) & Greg
After twenty years at Bay Area Hip Hop radio station KMEL 106.1 FM, morning show host Chuy Gomez was abruptly ousted on Thursday.

Caught by surprise, the 44 year old on-air legend Gomez was called into a meeting at the offices of Clear Channel on Townsend Street in front of his bosses and the general manager and immediately knew where that was going.

Where the station was going would not involve Gomez.

When Live 105′s Steve Masters referred to the rumors of the ousting was due to “budget reasons,” Gomez said “…they didn’t blatantly say “we fired you because we got no money for you.” They just said “change of direction, bro!”

On Tuesday, Chuy Gomez visited friends and colleagues at CBS Radio and Fernando & Greg on CBS Radio’s KMVQ 99.7 NOW. Gomez recounts what happened and his outlook on the future.

Report: Three Percent Still Use Dial-Up

Broadband access to the internet at home has risen steadily since 2000, and the “always on” connection typically increases the frequency with which people use the internet and the variety of things they do online.

Report: 17.4% of Global Web Traffic Is Mobile

People around the globe are accessing the web via their smartphones more often than ever. 

Mashable reports, so far in 2013, 17.4% of web traffic has come through mobile, representing more than a 6% increase since 2012 when 11.1% of traffic came from mobile.

Fox Fires Brian Lewis

Brian Lewis
UPDATE 5PM 8/21/13: The decision by Fox News chief Roger Ailes to fire his top communications executive, Brian Lewis, was due in part to the fact that Lewis had been leaking information to the author of a forthcoming book about Ailes and Fox News, two sources with knowledge of the situation told POLITICO.

Earlier Posting....

Brian Lewis, a Fox News Channel veteran executive considered the right-hand man to Roger Ailes, was working on his separation agreement Tuesday after having been fired and escorted from his office last month over what insiders are calling financial issues and other performance problems, TheHollywood Reporter has learned.

"After an extensive internal investigation of Brian Lewis' conduct by Fox News, it was determined that he should be terminated for cause, specifically for issues relating to financial irregularities, as well as for multiple, material and significant breaches of his employment contract," a company spokesperson said Tuesday. "He was terminated for cause on July 25."

Lewis, who had been a top executive since Ailes founded the powerful cable news network 17 years ago, was most recently EVP Corporate Communications, overseeing public relations not only for Fox News but also the Fox Business Network, Fox Television Stations and 20th Television.

Lewis also was senior adviser to Ailes, who was handpicked by Rupert Murdoch to create Fox News as its founding CEO. Today, Ailes also is chairman of Fox Television Stations. Before his firing, Lewis often was a spokesman for Ailes.

Boston Radio: Celtics Games No Longer Will Air On WEEI

The Celtics will have a new home on the radio dial in the coming season.

Entercom Communications, whose WRKO 680 AM and WEEI 93.7 FM stations in the Boston market have been the radio home for the Celtics since 2005, will no longer broadcast the NBA franchise's games beginning in 2013-14, according to The Boston Globe.

"WEEI has had an incredible run with the Boston Celtics, from being a part of their 17th championship banner to the end of the [new] Big 3 era," said Entercom Boston vice president/market manager Jeff Brown in a statement.

"Unfortunately we were unable to come to terms on a new contract moving forward. We thank the entire Celtics organization for our tremendous time together and wish them the best of luck in the future."

The Celtics did not offer a statement but team management confirmed Entercom's announcement.

It's uncertain at this time which station will carry the Celtics games in the 2013-14 season, but an announcement is expected soon. Greater Media, which owns five stations in the Boston market, has expressed interest in Celtics broadcasts in the past.

The CBS Radio-owned 98.5 The Sports Hub, which has surpassed WEEI in the Arbitron ratings among Boston's two primary sports radio stations, is the Bruins flagship station, but has enough other properties in the market to make any scheduling conflicts work.

Billtown Radio: Backyard Broadcasting Exits Radio

Barry Drake’s Backyard Broadcasting has completed its exit of radio with the sale of its cluster in Williamsport, Pam home of Little League.

Longtime cluster GM Don Farr is buying the cluster for an undisclosed price. Farr has managed the cluster for the past 20-years which includes  Country WILQ 105.1 FM, Oldiez WBZD-93.3 FM, Classic Rock simulcast 99.3 WZXR 99.3 South Williamsport and WCXR 103.7 in nearby Lewisburg, Hot AC WLMY 107.9 FM, and N/T WWPA 1340 AM/101.3 W267BJ.

Earlier this year Backyard sold its clusters in Muncie, IN and in New York State. (See original posting).

CC’s Brian Lakamp On The Future of Talk Radio

iHeartRadio, a streaming radio app, is turning its ear to talk. Brian Lakamp, Clear Channel president of digital, joins WSJ’s digits.

Coca-Cola, Pepsi Most Respected Brands

A new survey from CoreBrand, a company that researches branding and its impact on business, found that Coca-Cola and Pepsi were tied as the most-respected corporate brands in the eyes of other business people. That means they combined high recognition with very favorable views.

The top 10 were:

1. Coca-Cola
1. Pepsi
3. Hershey's
4. Harley-Davidson
5. Bayer
6. Johnson & Johnson
7. Kellogg's
8. Campbell's Soup Company
9. Colgate-Palmolive
10. Estee Lauder

On the other end of the spectrum, the companies with the least brand respect, meaning they had much less favorable views, staring from the worst, were:

Delta Air Lines
Phillip Morris
H&R Block
Big Lots
Best Buy
Capital One
Rite Aid
Foot Locker

R.I.P.: Iowa Broadcaster Paul Michaels Dies At 65

Paul Michaels
Cedar Valley airwaves lost an icon this week with the passing of broadcaster Paul Michaels, who was found dead at home Monday.

Michaels' real name was David Eggleston, according to  He was 65. The preliminary cause of death was natural causes

His death leaves a hole in the airwaves and the hallways of the Woodward Radio Group, home to KFMW, KOKZ, KWLO and KXEL in Waterloo, said Dennis Lowe, KXEL operations and news manager.

Michaels, a Waterloo native, worked in multiple capacities since 1981 when he joined KWLO --- originally KWWL-AM --- and KFMW. Michaels was the morning D.J. at KOKZ from 1996 through the spring of this year when he moved to KXEL 1540 AM, Waterloo, Iowa.

"He was very outgoing, gregarious," Lowe said. "People liked being around him. He had a passion for radio, and it was contagious."

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Fargo Radio: Big 98.7 FM Launches With Jesse, Amanda, Pike

Fargo's Q98 rocks has moved to 105.1 FM and taking the 98.7 FM spot on the FM dial is Big 98.7, branding as Today's Hits Music Without All The Rap.

Adult CHR KLTA Big 98.7 will be the new home of the popular morning show, "Jesse and Amanda with Pike."    Jesse and Amanda with Pike – John Halvorson (Jesse James), Amanda Scheid (Amanda Lea) and Taylor Peterson (Pike) – left their longtime home of Froggy 99.9 earlier this month.

According to The Forum, the three stayed mostly silent about where they were headed, the only hints being dropped through social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter. The cryptic messages only read, “Big changes are coming.”

98.7 FM was formerly home to Q98 Rocks, a hard rock, male-oriented staple of the Red River Valley moved Friday to 105.1 FM and is now branded Q105.1 Rocks retaining its call letters KQWB.

On Monday, hundreds of clients and listeners attended the Big 98.7 launch party as the morning trio went live on air from The Venue at the Hub at 5 p.m.

The station’s first song, “Got a Feeling” by the Black Eyed Peas, helped set the tone for a format of current hit songs minus any hard rock or rap.  Featured artists on the new Big 98.7 will include Bruno Mars, Justin Timberlake, Maroon 5 and Lady Gaga.

To top the day off, Jesse and Amanda with Pike were named North Dakota’s best morning show and top community service team by the North Dakota Broadcasters Association.

BIG 98.7 FM LISTEN-LINE: Click Here.

Monday’s announcement bookended a storm of radio station changes earlier this year.

In late April, Jim Ingstad sold his six Radio Fargo-Moorhead stations, – including Bob 95 – to Midwest Communications.

Ingstad then bought Froggy 99 and five other stations from L&L Broadcasting, which had just bought those stations as part of a larger deal with Triad Broadcasting.

Then, on Aug. 5, Ingstad swapped Froggy 99.9 with Midwest Communications’ Bob 95.