Saturday, December 7, 2013

Saturday Aircheck: Hot Hits WCAU-FM Philly From May 1983

WCAU FM, Hot Hits 98. May 1983. Scoped Aircheck of Overnight (Christy Springfield), Mornings (Barsky, new to CAU), and Richard Hawkins.

Program consultant Mike Joseph was brought into WCAU-FM in April 1981 to develop a new format to replace the struggling "Mellow Rhythm." Joseph recommended that the station go Top 40. On September 22, 1981, at Midnight, the new format at WCAU-FM debuted: an all-current-hits, high-energy, jingle-intensive Top 40 sound dubbed "Hot Hits" (a format first used by Joseph at WTIC-FM/Hartford, Connecticut in 1977), using the on-air name "98 Now." WCAU-FM's ratings showed an immediate improvement, and subsequently, FM stations in major markets such as Chicago, Detroit and San Francisco picked up the "Hot Hits" format.

WCAU-FM found a great deal of success with this programming for much of the mid-1980s, although the original "Fusion" jingles were dropped in the summer of 1982 and replaced with a package from JAM to increase appeal to older listeners. Some notable jocks on the station in this period included Paul Barsky, Terry Young and Christy Springfield. CBS soon developed a variation on "Hot Hits" called "Hitradio," and switched all their FM stations except WCBS-FM - including WCAU-FM - to it.

In 1987, WCAU-FM found itself with stiff competition in the CHR format from WEGX, "Eagle 106". CBS decided that their station could be more profitable appealing to an older, more desirable demographic of 25-54 year olds. On November 9, 1987, WCAU-FM flipped to an oldies format as WOGL (which stood for "Old Gold"). On the same day, WIOQ shifted to oldies as well. For the next year, the stations competed for Philadelphia's FM oldies audience, until WIOQ dropped the format early in 1989.

98 WOGL-FM was a clone of 101 WCBS-FM in New York at the time. Glenn Kalina hosts the midday show, shortly after WCAU-FM dropped Hot Hits, and became Oldies 98 WOGL-FM. Jan 1988.

December 7 In Radio History

In 1921...KWG-AM in Stockton, California began broadcasting. KWG is one of the oldest broadcasting stations in USA, signing on November 22, 1921. It is considered the first commercially licensed radio station west of the Mississippi River although not the first radio station to be founded on the West Coast — see KCBS (AM).  Until 1988, KWG used a T-antenna type transmitting antenna mounted on two 60-meter tall wooden poles, making KWG one of the last broadcast stations to use this type of antenna.

In 1938...The St. Louis Dispatch begins a two-year experiment to deliver newspapers by radio facsimile, first transmission via W9XZY

In 1941... Japanese planes attacked the home base of the U.S. Pacific fleet at Pearl Harbor on the Hawaiian island of Oahu, launching America's entry into World War Two. The Imperial Japanese Navy conducted a surprise military strike against the United States naval base at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. The attack was intended to prevent the U.S. Pacific Fleet from influencing the war that the Empire of Japan was planning in Southeast Asia against Britain and the Netherlands, as well as the U.S. in the Philippines. The base was attacked by a total of 353 Japanese aircraft, in two waves, launched from six aircraft carriers. Four U.S. Navy battleships were sunk and four other battleships were damaged. The Japanese also sank or damaged three cruisers, three destroyers, an anti-aircraft training ship and one minelayer. A total of 188 U.S. aircraft were destroyed, 2,402 American personnel were killed and 1,282 were wounded.

In 1943...Folk singer/songwriter Harry Chapin, whose songs include "Cat's in the Cradle," was born. He died in a car accident on July 16, 1981 at 38

In 1960...WABC-AM, debuted its "Top 40" format. Compliments of, the Top40 WABC tribute site.  Here's the Day One line-up:

10:00   Breakfast Club - Don McNeill
3:00     JACK CARNEY
6:00     Newscope
10:00   SCOTT MUNI

 Plus, here's an early WABC aircheck.  July 3, 1961 was Dan Ingram's first day on-air at WABC.

In 1977…Peter Goldmark, developer of the LP (long playing) 33 1/3 rpm record and the first commercial color television system, was killed in a car accident at the age of 71.

In 1994...Radio personality Howard Stern talked a man out of trying to kill himself.

Friday, December 6, 2013

Austin Radio: Sandy McIlree Leaves KAMX

Hager & McIlree
Following last week's departure of JB Hager from the morning show at KAMX 94.7 FM Mix in Austin, longtime partner Sandy McIlree is also departing.  

Owner Entercom released the following statement:
Entercom Austin today announced effective immediately that JB and Sandy Mcllree would no longer host morning drive on Austin’s Mix 94.7 and that a new morning show host had been hired. 
Vice-President of Programming Cat Thomas said, “We are excited about the future of Mix in 2014, and we will be naming our new host shortly. We are pleased to announce we will be retaining Alex and Sara, and we will continue playing Austin’s best music mix.”
“JB and Sandy have been part of Mix for 18 years, which is a lifetime in radio. JB and Sandy made an indelible impact on our station, their audience and the city of Austin. But unfortunately the declining performance of the show, and the expense of the show no longer made economic sense, and we were unable to come to terms. We thank them for their work and wish them the best in the future.”
Don't expect Hager&McIlreee to be on-the-beach for very long. Earlier this week, MC posted a story that Hager’s been “glued to the phone” with his agent and said a deal for a new show could be announced very soon. Hager couldn’t discuss details of the new project

DC Radio: Rob Ford Denies Trying To Buy 'Coke' Video

Embattled Toronto mayor Rob Ford Thursday talked to WJFK 106.7 FM The Fan's "Sports Junkies" show about allegations that he tried to buy a video that appeared to show him smoking crack cocaine, childhood memories of the Redskins and the controversy over the team's mascot.

According to The Washington Post, the four Junkies — lifelong friends from the Maryland suburbs, who started with a cable-access show nearly 20 years ago — banter about sports, pop culture and their own lives for four hours weekday mornings. They’ve never been accused of excessive maturity, or of rigorous journalism, but they’ve earned a loyal following among Washington area sports fans for their lively, irreverent chatter.

That the Junkies briefly became international newsmakers Thursday was thanks in large part to two of their producers, Matt Cahill and Matt Myers, who wrote to Ford’s representatives about two weeks ago “as a lark, really,” said John-Paul Flaim, another host. Cahill and Myers regularly aim high with their requests.

They tried to appeal to Ford — a known football fanatic who attended a Redskins youth camp as a teenager and watched last weekend’s Bills game in person — by inviting him to pick NFL games, as former Maryland governor Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. used to do. To the surprise of Cahill and Myers, Ford’s chief of staff got in touch Tuesday, saying the mayor was in.

Read More Now.

'The Sound of Music' Ratings Winner For NBC

NBC’s live revival of “The Sound of Music” averaged 18.5 million viewers Thursday, handily beating competitors in the Big Four throughout its three-hour telecast.

According to Variety, the Carrie Underwood-starrer peaked at the 9 p.m. hour, according to preliminary nationals from Nielsen, nabbing over 19 million viewers. The special’s biggest turnout was with women 25-54, a demo that notched a 7.0 in household rating during the primetime broadcast.

For its three hours, “Sound of Music” drew a 4.6 rating and 13 share among adults 18-49. In particular, “Sound of Music” gave NBC a rare victory in the brutal 8 p.m. timeslot, normally dominated by CBS’ “The Big Bang Theory” (4.6/14, 15.3 million).

“Big Bang” hadn’t finished second in overall viewers since May 2012.

Expect NBC-TV to air the production again before Christmas.

Nielsen: Listening Surges With Holiday Tunes

On or around Thanksgiving, programmers traditionally flip the switch and begin a four-week run of holiday tunes while watching their audiences grow steadily before peaking on Christmas Eve.

Last year in the top 48 markets measured by Nielsen, 28.4 million Americans tuned to an “All Christmas” radio station on Dec. 24.

Now, the fact that Christmas music on the radio performs best the night before Christmas shouldn’t surprise, but after digging into the data for the top holiday-format stations in each of those markets last year, a few interesting trends emerged.

First, according to Nielsen,  the mid-day daypart (Monday-Friday 10 a.m.-3 p.m.) led the holiday ratings, with listening peaking during the 12 p.m. hour over the four-week stretch from early December to New Year’s. Last year, the audience size during mid-days increased 71 percent from when the stations were not in the All Christmas format.

However, that wasn’t where the most dramatic changes due to holiday music happened. The numbers for the nighttime (defined as Monday-Friday 7 p.m.-midnight) slot were off the charts compared with the normal results after sundown. During the course of the holiday ratings season, nights saw a 129 percent lift and—hold onto your eggnog—a 582 percent lift on Christmas Eve.

To put that last stat in perspective, the normal nighttime average quarter-hour (AQH) audience--the average number of listeners tuned in during a given 15-minute period—on these stations in 2012 was 291,700. On Christmas Eve, it was 1.9 million.

Chicago Radio: FCC Fines CC For EEO Violations

The Federal Communications Commission announced Thursday that is was fining CCM+E's Chicago cluster Chicago cluster for failing to meet with Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) rules.

The FCC levied a fine of $20,000 and strict reporting conditions have been proposed against the Chicago radio stations after nearly three dozen violations during a two-year period.

The fine comes after the FCC reviewed of CC's hiring practices over the period of August 1, 2009 through July 31, 2011. Out of the 36 full-time vacancies at their Chicago radio stations, Clear Channel allegedly did not follow the proper EEO rules for 33 of those hires.

Specifically, CC/Chicago failed to notify numerous agencies of the vacancies. The FCC's review also found that Clear Channel Chicago failed to properly self-analyze their recruitment program on an ongoing basis.

Read the Commissions Notice of Apparent Liability: Click Here.

Tom's Take:  Could the fines be tied to this week's departure of PD Kris Kelly from CC's WGCI and WKSC?

Portland Radio: Activists Target KPOJ-AM License

Even though Portland radio hosts Carl Wolfson and Thom Hartmann are slated to return to the local radio dial in January, the bloggers at Blue Oregon still want Clear Channel to pay for axing Progressive Talk on  KPOJ 620 AM last year.

According to WillametteWeek, Blue Oregon is launching a petition asking the Federal Communications Commission to deny Clear Channel's license renewal for the signal—now home to Fox Sports Radio.

"Clear Channel has an obligation to the city of Portland to operate their airwaves in the public interest," says Carla Axtman, who organized the petition. "We don't believe that a third sports station and no commercial progressive talk radio, in one of the most progressive cities in the union, fulfills that obligation."

"We want to make Clear Channel do their due diligence for the community."

Tampa Radio: 'Slap Ass Friday' Call To WPOI Prompts Action

Hot 101's Jayde
A student's call to Top40 WPOI 101.5 FM (Hot 101) in Tampa Bay has prompted a Hillsborough County school investigation. Radio personality Jayde Donovan described the call received by 101.5 from a 13-year-old girl.

The topic of conversation involved the practice of "Slap Ass Fridays."

"The lines literally were loaded. I could not take every call that we got from girls all over the Bay area," Donovan said. "Middle school, high school saying Slap Ass Friday or Ass Slap Friday is happening at our school."

A YouTube search revealed thousands of results for kids slapping kids around the country. The incidents sometimes appeared to happen at schools and sometimes caught on camera. Donovan learned some students take things a step further in one radio interview.

FOX 13 News

The interview prompted calls from concerned parents. Some reached out to the radio station and the Hillsborough County school district.

"As soon as we learned of the allegation, school staff took it seriously and investigated. We spoke with several students and determined there was no incident on our campus. We do not tolerate any form of harassment or bullying and encourage students to let us know if they know about safety issues concerning our students."

Britney Spears To Guest CoHost AT40

Grammy Award-winning pop icon Britney Spears will guest host American Top 40 this weekend, December 7 and 8.

In addition to counting down the Top 40 songs, Spears will answer questions directly from fans and talk about the making of her latest studio album "Britney Jean," including what it was like to record a duet with her sister, Jamie Lynn, and their future plans to collaborate.

Spears will also discuss her personal life - from love and break-ups to her favorite Christmas memories, and what fans can expect from her two-year "Britney Spears: Piece of Me" residency at the Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino in Las Vegas, which kicks off December 27.

American Top 40 with Ryan Seacrest, the number one countdown show in the U.S., is syndicated by Premiere Networks on nearly 500 stations worldwide.

H2Radio Renames Itself Rivet News Radio

iPhone App Released

HearHere Radio, a Chicago-based startup, has launched its new app, Rivet News Radio, to deliver on-demand news and information to listeners.

The app puts users in control of their news, letting them find and follow the stories they want to hear. The Rivet News Radio app is available free for the iPhone in the App Store. HearHere Radio anticipates expanding the service to other markets and platforms, including Android and automotive, in 2014.

Rivet Radio brings to radio news the flexibility that the Web has long given readers of text news and that mobile consumers have already adopted for music, TV, movies and books. With cutting-edge technology, Rivet Radio lets users hear news on their own schedules – starting, stopping, skipping and selecting stories as they wish.

“Rivet News Radio is everything on-the-go news enthusiasts love, and none of the stuff you hate. It’s news on your schedule: The latest traffic, weather and breaking news reports are waiting for you whenever and wherever you turn on the app,” said John MacLeod, founder and CEO of HearHere Radio. “It’s ‘the top of the hour’ whenever you launch Rivet Radio. And because your smartphone knows where you are, Rivet Radio brings you streamlined and focused traffic reports and local stories targeted for your specific area, starting with Chicago.  We will be expanding to other local markets in 2014.”

“Over the last few decades, radio stations have gradually trimmed news or eliminated it altogether. Even those with full news departments live under oppressive time limits. This is radio news freed of the tyranny of the clock: Stories can run as long – or as short – as needed. Rivet Radio gives news a chance to ‘breathe,’” said HearHere Radio’s head of news, Charlie Meyerson.

Celeb Podcasts Target Traditional Radio Revenue

Norm Pattiz is using the formula he honed at Westwood One—bundling traditional radio shows to create a bigger target for advertisers—and updating it for the Webm  according to Bloomberg BusinessWeek.

Kathie Lee Gifford saw enough potential to start Kathie Lee and Company three months earlier than planned, kicking off her first interview in October with Regis Philbin.

While U.S. advertising on Internet radio outlets such as Pandora will reach $331 million this year, podcasts have been stuck at about $34 million since 2010, says researcher ZenithOptimedia.

Pattiz, 70, says he’s out to steal advertising from traditional radio, where national networks draw $1.15 billion in ads a year. His lure: one-hour shows from celebs including love guru Dr. Drew Pinsky, sports radio host Dan Patrick, and comedians Russell Brand, Dennis Miller, and Adam Carolla.

The audience for U.S. podcasts has surged 58 percent since 2010, says EMarketer. With 200 shows, PodcastOne averages 100 million downloads a month. Wrestler “Stone Cold” Steve Austin’s podcast gets 1 million of those. Within a week, Gifford’s first show attracted 100,000 listeners on iTunes.

Read More Now

Report: Spotify Planning Free Mobile Streaming

Spotify is planning a free, ad-supported version of its streaming-music service on mobile devices, according to people familiar with the matter, after previously making mobile users pay a monthly fee.

According to, the Sweden-based music company has reached licensing deals with all three of the global music companies to use their recordings on the new service, these people added.

Until now, a free version of Spotify was available only on desktop and laptop computers.

Spotify, which has 6 million paying subscribers and 20 million active users world-wide, has been negotiating for nearly a year with the three major record companies— Sony Music Entertainment, Universal Music Group and Warner Music Group—over the rates it will pay them to play songs on the free mobile service, and over how much direct control users have over what they listen to, these people said.

Read More Now (Subscription Required)

S/WB Radio: WEZX Brings Back Jim Rising As PD

Jim Rising
Veteran Scranton/Wilkes-Barre, PA programming veteran Jim Rising is back as Shamrock Communications hires him as PD for Classic Rocker WEZX Rock 107 FM. Rising will also host PM Drive.

This will be Rising's second stint at Rock 107. He was PD back in the mid-90s. And hismarket experience includes many years as PD and morning host at Top40 WKRZ 98.5 FM

Rising replaces PD Scott Laudani who exited during the summer. He'll also continue to work with Opus Broadcasting Triple A WQTL 106.1 FM The Path) in Tallahassee, FL.

'Born to Run' Sells For $197,000 At Auction

Someone was willing to pay big bucks for an early glimpse of what would become the Boss' "runaway American dream."

According to  The Telegraph, a handwritten, working lyric sheet for Bruce Springsteen's 1975 hit "Born to Run" sold at Sotheby's on Thursday for $197,000, well exceeding pre-sale estimates of between $70,000 and $100,000.

The auction house didn't reveal the identity of either the seller or the telephone bidder who bought the document, which used to be in the collection of Springsteen's former manager, Mike Appel.

The title track of Springsteen's 1975 multi-platinum album has revved up generations of fans, from its opening view of "the streets of a runaway American dream" to its high-octane chorus: "tramps like us/baby we were born to run." Some Springsteen aficionados still refer to themselves as "tramps."

Most of the lines in this rough 1974 version, written in Long Branch, New Jersey, are apparently unpublished and unrecorded, but the manuscript does include "a nearly perfected chorus," the auction house said.

Read More Now

Ron Burgundy Makes A Stop At The Dan Patrick Show

The Ron Burgundy (a.k.a. Will Ferrell) promotion tour for the upcoming release of the movie Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues included a stop at the studios of syndicated sports talker Dan Patrick.

DC Radio: Redskins Reportedly Not Happy With WJFK Parodies

Danny Rouhier
In the series of dead-on weekly parodies, which began last month, Washington sports-talk radio station WJFK 106.75 FM The Fan has fun at the expense of the Redskins and their radio broadcasters, Larry Michael, Sonny Jurgensen and Chris Cooley.

According to The Washington Post, the bits, performed by mid-day cohost Danny Rouhier (who has done standup comedy) and produced by Ajay Atayee, are a mock play-by-play of a Redskins game, voiced primarily by Rouhier (Roo-Yay) as a fake Larry Michael and fake Jurgensen. Actual clips of Cooley — like Jurgensen, a former Redskin — are included in the routines.

In addition to mocking the team’s poor play, the routines have skewered everything from long waits and high prices at FedEx Field (“This score means all fans in attendance can wander the parking-lot wasteland and sit in traffic. All that for 50 bucks!”) to Snyder’s occasional litigiousness (one segment is fake-sponsored by “Michaels, Michaels, Michaels & Michaels — official suing partner of the Washington Redskins”).

Actual Redskins games are broadcast on a network of stations headed by WTEM AM ESPN980, a station owned by Snyder himself. So WJFK’s parodies are triple-edged: a shot at the woebegone team, its owner, and a chief radio rival, ESPN980.

The parodies may have cut a little too close to the bone.

Team spokesman Tony Wyllie complained about them to WJFK’s Redskins beat reporter, Grant Paulsen, last week. According to station sources, Wyllie said the routines were malicious — so malicious that they could prompt legal action by the Redskins.

Read More Now

Report: Relief At CNBC After 'Money Honey' Departure

Maria Bartiromo
So what's the mood at CNBC following the departure of Maria Bartiromo (dubbed the 'money honey' by Rush Limbaugh)?

According to Business Insider, one person who was at CNBC headquarters the day after Bartiromo's departure actually described a widespread sense of "relief."

It's not that Bartiromo was disliked.  It's that CNBC is an insanely competitive place internally, especially with respect to booking guests. And Bartiromo often had a lock on the best guests, leaving other reporters, anchors, and producers out in the cold.

One person familiar with the workings of CNBC, when asked about the environment, responded via email: "CNBC is SO COMPETITIVE ABOUT BOOKINGS. So much so that it always spilled over to infighting between shows."

Another former employee at CNBC described constant head-butts with Bartiromo over guests, and told us that well-known guests have complained about how if they ever went on another show on CNBC they would get angry phone calls about it.

So basically, in an environment where everyone is extremely territorial about their guests, the departure of the network's most famous name frees up a lot of booking chances. It also frees up money — Bartiromo's hefty salary — that CNBC can now invest in other on-air talent.

Bartiromo will almost certainly be able to help Fox Business get bigger guests, but she's unlikely to have is any kind of monopoly on them, the way she did at CNBC.

Read More Now

R.I.P.: Texas Broadcast Pioneer Joe Jerkins

Joe Jerkins
A former president and general manager of KVUE-TV in Austin, Joe Jerkins, died Tuesday Dec. 3 after a long battle with leukemia.

He was 88.

Jerkins was a pioneer in broadcasting. He began his broadcasting career in 1942 as a radio announcer while he was still in high school. After two years in the U.S. Navy in World War II and earning an electrical engineering degree at the University of Oklahoma, he became a newsman/announcer at KSWO Lawton.

He returned to his hometown in 1947 and worked as a newsman announcer at KOGY and later at KOMA radio, public information director for the Oklahoma Safety Council, promotions, production, program and operations manager at WKY-TV and assistant general manager for KTVY, Inc. in Oklahoma City.

In 1979, Jerkins moved to Austin as vice president and general manager of KVUE-TV. He became KVUE-TV’s president in 1987 and served as president of the Texas Association of Broadcasters in 1991.

He also started the Austin Crime Stoppers program and throughout the years, led the United Way, the Salvation Army advisory board, the Austin Chamber of Commerce, American Youth Works, and the Austin Community Foundation.

December 6 In Radio History

In 1877...Thomas Edison made his first recording of a human voice, reciting the nursery rhyme "Mary had a little lamb," on the first tinfoil cylinder phonograph.

In 1923...President Coolidge makes the first presidential address on U.S. radio

In 1957...Elvis Presley met two of his music idols, R&B singers Little Junior Parker and Bobby "Blue" Bland, while visiting Memphis radio station WDIA.

In 1963...The Beatles began a tradition of releasing a spoken-word and musical message Christmas recording for fans. One such record was issued each year from 1963–1969 and a compilation of all seven in 1970.

In 1980...In an interview with BBC Radio 1, John Lennon said the great thing about living in New York City was that people left him alone.

In 1994...WRKS NYC changes format to classic soul

In 2003...Pat St. John first show at WAXQ

Thursday, December 5, 2013

CCM+E Is Moving Rush To New Stations In LA, SF

Rush Limbaugh
In a surprise move, Rush Limbaugh will soon have a new home in Los Angeles and San Francisco.

KFI 640 AM is losing the conservative host's three-hour show, long a fixture on the station, to KTLK 1150 AM, which owner CCM+E is hoping to pump up as an outlet exclusively dedicated to right-leaning talk, according to The LA Times.

The company will use Limbaugh's audience to anchor a retooled lineup for KTLK, which is being dubbed "The Patriot" and will also feature national shows by Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity.

Clear Channel is making similar changes in San Francisco, where Limbaugh will leave its KKSF 910 AM, and move to KNEW 960 AM, which is also retooling its lineup as a destination for conservative audiences.

The changes start the first of 2014

KFI will switch to all-local programming, and the vacated Limbaugh block will be filled by hosts Bill Handel and Bill Carroll. Handel's show will run from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m., and Carroll's from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.

“The Patriot will be home to well-known hosts sharing the same conservative philosophical views and values, while KFI will be live and local all day long focusing mainly on the issues that affect Southern Californians,” Greg Ashlock, Clear Channel's market president for Los Angeles, said in a statement.

The Hollywood Reporter notes both KNEW and KTLK feature an array of talkers on both sides of the political spectrum, though presumably the ones who lean left will no longer be welcome after the two stations are rebranded.

Displacing liberal talkers with smaller audiences is nothing new to Limbaugh, who has been a thorn in the side of the left since taking his show national in 1988. He is the nation’s No. 1 talk-radio host, featured on 600 channels and attracting an audience of up to 20 million people per week. He also is a constant target of left-wing activists, with groups like Media Matters for America frequently issuing missives to journalists nationwide that outline the host's latest alleged transgression.

Also on Wednesday, the company confirmed previous reports that, in New York, Limbaugh will ditch 77 WABC 770 AM, run by Cumulus Media, for WOR 710 AM, which is owned by Clear Channel. That switch will also occur on Jan. 1.

SiriusXM CEO: Terrestrial Radio "Biggest Gorilla In The Room"

James Meyer
The business model of Internet streaming music service Pandora cannot work without a "lot more advertising," SiriusXM CEO Jim Meyer told CNBC on Tuesday.

"That plays to our strength," he added, "because our music stations will remain commercial free forever."

SiriusXM has about 25.1 million subscribers, which according to Seeking Alpha compares to roughly 6 million paid users for Spotify and about 2.5 million paying subscribers for Pandora.

Meyer said on "Squawk Box" that terrestrial radio is still "the biggest gorilla in the room" with about $15 billion a year in revenue, compared with SiriusXM's projected $4 billion in sales next year.

"The competition for me has always been free" radio, he continued. "We're not interested in customers who don't want to pay."

Besides serving its subscribers, SiriusXM's relationship with automakers is important, considering a main revenue stream has been the inclusion of satellite radios in new cars, trucks and SUVs.

"We're in 70 percent of all new cars built," Meyer reported. "At the end of the third quarter, we have 57 million [vehicles] out there that have our technology incorporated. And about mid-30s of that are not active."

But he said that part of the business is evolving, as subscribers sell their cars. "We're now getting two bites at the apple," Meyer said, because the company can also sell the purchaser of that used car satellite radio service.

DC Radio: Toronto Mayor Rob Ford Auditions On The Fan

Rob Ford
Toronto Mayor Robert “Rob” Ford is scheduled to join the Sports Junkies radio show on WJFK 106.7 FM The Fan in Washington, D.C. on Thursday.

The Sports Junkies were elated to announce Wednesday they’d be joined by Ford, an avid sports fan, who will talk sports and give his NFL picks.

Ford’s initial appearance is tentatively scheduled for Thursday, Dec. 5 at 8:40 a.m. EST.

LISTEN-LINE:  Click Here

For now, a weekly segment has not been approved.  But if all goes well Thursday, an agreement on a recurring segment could be reached, according to the station.

Providence Radio: Talker John DePetro Reports Threats

John DePetro (Jounral photo)
WPRO 630 AM / 99.7 FM host John DePetro filed a complaint with police this week, saying he was threatened by two men outside the radio station, according to the Providence Journal.

DePetro told the police the suspects, whom he didn't know, made "threats to his employment and his well being," police said.

Police believe the men were angered over comments DePetro made on air in late September about a labor union protest outside a fundraiser for state Gen. Treas. Gina Raimondo.

Talking about the protest on his morning talk show the next day, including comments by a female union leader, DePetro said: "What a disgrace. You are an embarrassment ... . You are parasites. You are cockroaches. You lie. You are union hags. There's another word I'd like to use ... it begins with a W. and an H. and an O. and an R. and an E. and an S. See if they can spell that."

Labor unions in the wake of DePetro's comments, have called on companies - including local jewelry maker Alex & Ani -- to stop advertising with the radio station as long as DePetro remains on the air.

Rush said the incident occurred around 8:30 a.m. Tuesday, shortly before DePetro was to go on air for his show, which runs from 9 a.m. to noon weekdays.

By the time the police arrived, Rush said, the suspects had left. DePetro filed his complaint at police headquarters, saying that if the suspects are caught, he would press charges.

Read More Now

Seattle Radio: Candy & Potter Returning

The husband-and-wife morning show duo Candy & Potter are returning to Seattle.  This time to Entercom's KHTP The NewHot 103.7 FM

KHTP 103.7 FM 60dBu Coverage
Most recently the pair were doing mornings for MidWest Family's Country WWQM Q106 in Madison WI. Before that they were at at CBS Radio's Country KMPS in Seattle.

Their start date at Hot 103.7 is set for January 22.

Both Candy and Potter were raised in the Seattle area, where they started at KBKS 106.1 Kiss FM. Their first PD was Mike Preston, now PD at Hot 103.7 FM.

"Candy & Potter are spot-on for Hot 103.7's audience," said Preston. "Pop culture sensibilities, combined with a passion for their hometown and a love of the music makes this show highly topical and interactive. Starting on January 22nd, listeners will wake up to Candy & Potter's relentless pursuit of the most interesting and funny topics of the day with a show that’s little bit like Facebook on radio."

Stops along the way have included WFLY Fly 92 in Albany, NY and middays at WLNK 107.9 FM The Link) in Charlotte.

Miami Radio: DJ Laz OUT At WRMA

South Florida’s deep-voiced veteran deejay made a name for himself at Miami-based “Power 96” WPOW 96.5-FM, left that dance party station last year after almost two decades, and later joined WRMA 106.7-FM.

Now, the deejay known as the “Pimp with the Limp,” is no longer at WRMA, according to the Sun-Sentinel.

The station, owned by Spanish Broadcasting System in Medley, has been simulcasting programming from what was known as “El Zol” WXDJ 95.7-FM, a Spanish tropical format of mostly salsa and merengue artists. And it has been rebranded as “El Nuevo Zol.”

DJ Laz, whose real name is Lazaro Mendez, did not respond Wednesday to interview requests. Jesus Salas, executive vice president of programming at Spanish Broadcasting System, declined to comment except to say that the simulcast began Nov. 29.

Mendez made waves in April 2012 when he suddenly departed “Power 96,” his home base of 22 years, where his dry-heave laugh and his club parties made him a local name.

Before he started at WRMA, billboards along Interstate 95 heavily promoted his arrival, teasing drivers with the question: “Where is DJ Laz?” When his new show went on the air July 4, 2012, Laz helmed his Fort Lauderdale-Miami market morning show from 6 to 9 a.m. weekdays. Then he’d stay on the air for another three hours for his West Coast morning-drive shift on Los Angeles sister station, KXOL 96.3-FM.

Under Laz, WRMA’s format replaced romantic Spanish-language ballads with a mix of English- and Spanish-language top 40 music (mostly dance). The station was promoted as “Miami’s new party station.”

But the dial shift and format change may have not clicked with audiences or management. WRMA ranked 22nd out of 30 stations in the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood-Miami market in percent share of overall listeners last month, meaning a weekly cumulative audience of 457,200 listeners, according to Nielsen Audio. Sister station WXDJ (the former “Zol”) ranked No. 13 with a 3.2 share of listeners for the same time period, or a weekly audience of 536,600 listeners for the same period.

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Cumulus Refinances $2.2B In Debt

Cumulus Media Holdings set terms Wednesday on a new $2.23 billion loan to refinance existing debt, sources told Thomson Reuters LPC.

The Atlanta, Georgia-based company is marketing a $200 million, five-year revolver and a $2.025 billion, seven-year first-lien term loan. The company set indicative pricing of LIB+325-350, with a 1 percent Libor floor, and a 99.5 original issue discount on the new term loan.

Proceeds will refinance the company's current first- and second-lien loans. At September 30, Cumulus had $1.24 billion outstanding on its first-lien term loan due September 2018, and $785.5 million out on its second-lien term loan due September 2019.

The existing first-lien term loan carries a spread of LIB+350 with a 1 percent Libor floor, while the second-lien term loan pays LIB+600 with a 1.5 percent Libor floor.

Cumulus is back after repricing its first-lien term loan a year ago. With this proposed transaction, the company is trying to lower costs on its first-lien loans and taking out higher-cost second-lien loans.

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Media Cautious With Release Of Newtown 911 Audio

Wednesday's release of audio recordings of the 911 calls from the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings forced news organizations to make difficult — and probably unpopular -- decisions about what to broadcast and what to hold back.

According to CNN, news executives said they were considering both the wishes of the community where the school was located, Newtown, Connecticut, and the journalistic impulse to report on one of the biggest news stories of the past year.

The recordings were made available to news organizations at around 2 p.m. ET on Wednesday. Shortly afterward, CNN said in a statement that it was exercising caution with regard to the tapes.

"We are preparing a report that will provide context to the recordings and report any new information learned," the network said. "That story will air later today after we have had time to carefully review the material."

One of CNN's competitors, Fox News Channel, televised some audio clips about an hour after the tapes were released. The Fox anchor Shepard Smith informed viewers that the network would "not be airing the most gut-wrenching moments."

A spokesman for ABC said that network, which produces "World News" and "Good Morning America," would not broadcast any audio from the 911 tapes at all, but would report on the information contained within. Another network, CBS, said it would broadcast some audio clips on its newscasts, but not the entire tapes. NBC reached the same conclusion as ABC: the network's newscasts "will NOT air the audio on television or online," according to an e-mail message distributed to NBC News staff members.

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Report: Crisis Mode At GMA

Good Morning America is in crisis mode, according to Radar OnLine, as Robin Roberts, Lara Spencer, Josh Elliott are demanding huge pay increases, and George Stephanopoulos wants to replace Diane Sawyer on World News, is exclusively reporting.

Viewers of the number one-rated morning news program were shocked on Monday, when beloved weatherman Sam Champion announced that he was leaving ABC for The Weather Channel, which is owned by NBC Universal.

“Robin will definitely be getting a huge pay raise, she is the glue that holds the team together,” a show insider told “Viewers love her and are emotionally invested with Robin from her breast cancer battle to bone marrow transplant last year — there is no way ABC is going to let Robin get away.”

The bigger problem is with Stephanopoulos, whose contract expires next month.

“He has made no secret that he no longer wants to do morning television. George wants to replace Diane Sawyer when she decides to hang it up, but who knows when that will be? His strengths are doing hard news, and has been extremely successful as the host of the ABC’s Sunday morning show, This Week.

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Fox: Commercials Sold-Out For Super Bowl

The Fox network said it has sold out commercial space for the upcoming Super Bowl, demonstrating how demand for big-ticket sporting events — and their audiences — has remained constant despite broader changes in the media industry.

Commercial spots for up to 30 seconds sold for as much as $4 million, WSJ reports, citing ad buyers.

The term “sold out” is a bit of a misnomer, according  to the WSJ Media Journal, as advertisers can still pull out before the game, giving the network a chance to sell the spot at what is usually a higher price than what was charged earlier.

Likewise, Fox said it still has time available in its live stream of the game on the Web, which will carry a similar number of ads to the TV broadcast.

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Sun Broadcast Inks Ad Placement Deal With Jelli

After months of publicly calling for much needed change to measurement and accountability in network radio, Sun Broadcast Group, Inc. CEO, Jason Bailey, announced today the company is investing in the deployment of Jelli, Inc.’s cloud- based ad platform across its entire network that will make it easier and faster to buy and run radio advertisements.

The change will start immediately across all of Sun’s Hispanic products including CNN en Español, Fox Deportes, AccuWeather en Español and its national Latino Advantage network. Sun Hispanic content partner, Stardome Media Group, has also committed to the platform change. A roll out to Sun’s general market offerings will begin in early 2014.

“I have been asking leaders large and small to stand with me and implement true change in how we conduct business across our industry,” said Jason Bailey, CEO. “Radio has been living in the dark ages when it comes to accountability. We’re being eaten alive by the real time metrics of digital audio competitors and our best answer, RADAR©, still requires busy planners and buyers to go back months after a campaign to see what should have run. Today we stand proud to put our entire sales and programming schedules on the line and make a real change for this great industry”

In this new partnership, Sun Broadcast Group has agreed to finance equipment and installation costs for each affiliate they service.

LI Radio: WRCN Readies For Switch to All-News

The Long Island News Radio station on WRCN 103.9 FM plans to launch on Dec. 26 in a former office near the baggage claim inside MacArthur Airport in Ronkonkoma, according to Newsday.

WRCN 103.9 FM 60dBu Coverage
The 24-hour all-talk format is to replace the music format, which will include Christmas tunes for the season.
Featuring traffic, news, sports and talk shows, the new station will focus on all of Long Island, all the time, said John Caracciolo, president of station owner JVC Broadcasting of Ronkonkoma.

Caracciolo sees a void in radio coverage of Long Island. "The media still looks at us as a bedroom community," he said, and noted that with 3.4 million residents "we're bigger than some states; and there isn't a news talk station."

The station will be heard in Suffolk County and online, he said.

Islip Town officials said a radio station broadcasting from MacArthur will raise the airport's profile. Caracciolo said he believes this is the only radio station in an area airport.

JVC spent about $175,000 in soundproofing to ensure the studio maintains the requisite quiet. "Back here, the jet noise isn't too loud," Caracciolo said of the studio's location near the front of the airport. The studio's large glass windows face baggage claim and are intended to attract travelers and airport visitors, and integrate the station's presence into the airport environment.

The station will employ about 20 full-time and part-time staffers. Matthew Goldapper, the station's general manager, said the company plans to bring on college students to report and produce news segments.

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NYC Radio: Stations Deny Anthony Weiner Show Talk

Anthony Weiner
The NY Daily News Confidenti@l has reported that disgraced mayoral wannabe and Twitter enthusiast Anthony Weiner is in talks to host a radio show.

The paper cites sources close to the deal as saying Weiner was mulling an offer to host an hour-long chat show on either WOR 710 AM or WABC 770 AM radio, focusing on...what else?   Local politics.

However, spox for both Cumulus Media and CCM+E deny they're talking to Anthony Weiner about a talk show.

“Our comment is best summed up by Taylor Swift’s hit song, ‘We’re never, ever getting back together’ — and in this case we were never together to begin with as this is nothing Cumulus ever contemplated,” said a spokesman for Cumulus Media Network, which distributes shows from Mark Levin, Don Imus and more.

A source from Clear Channel had a more succinct answer to the speculation over Weiner joining their ranks: “Just not true.”

So, where did these rumors begin? According to Mediaite, speculation began swirling after Weiner was spotted in WABC’s studios when he appeared as a guest on Geraldo Rivera’s radio show following his fifth place finish in New York’s mayoral primary. “Yes, he was in the building as a guest on a show,” the source said. “No, he’s not getting his own show.”

Bashir Resigns From MSNBC Over Palin Comments

Martin Bashir
MSNBC host Martin Bashir resigned from the network Wednesday after an uproar over his recent comments about Sarah Palin.

Last month, Bashir apologized for what he called “offensive” comments about the former Alaska governor, whom he also called an “idiot” and “dunce.” He told viewers in a scripted commentary last month that someone should defecate in Palin’s mouth. He was invoking an old slave punishment in response to a speech by Palin, a Fox News contributor, comparing the national debt to slavery.

Bashir took off two weeks for what was billed as a vacation, and there was a marked contrast with MSNBC’s treatment of Alec Baldwin, who got the boot over an alleged anti-gay slur hurled at a photographer. In his statement, Bashir said:
“After making an on-air apology, I asked for permission to take some additional time out around the Thanksgiving holiday. 
“Upon further reflection, and after meeting with the president of MSNBC, I have tendered my resignation. It is my sincere hope that all of my colleagues, at this special network, will be allowed to focus on the issues that matter without the distraction of myself or my ill-judged comments. 
“I deeply regret what was said, will endeavor to work hard at making constructive contributions in the future and will always have a deep appreciation for our viewers – who are the smartest, most compassionate and discerning of all television audiences.”

Pandora Reports Listening Hours Increase 18 Percent

Pandora announced Wednesday new metrics that were reached in the month of November 2013.
  • Listener hours for Pandora during the month of November 2013 were 1.49 billion, an increase of 18% from 1.27 billion during the same period last year.
  • Share of total U.S. radio listening for Pandora in November 2013 was 8.44%, an increase from 7.17% at the same time last year.
  • Active listeners were 72.4 million at the end of November 2013, an increase of 16% from 62.4 million during the same time period last year.
Meanwhile, Forbes reports there's a 30% upside yo Pandora’s stock if its content costs decline To Sirius XM’s levels.

According to Forbes,  For 2012 Pandora’s content acquisition costs stood at close to 60.6% of its total revenues. In comparison, Sirius XM’s revenue sharing and royalty costs stood at around 18.6% of its subscription revenues for the same year. However, this is not a true comparison. Sirius XM spends additional money on acquiring and producing the content, the costs of which do not come under the revenue sharing model. Keeping this in mind, the overall content-related costs for Sirius XM stood at close to 28% of its subscription revenues in 2012. This still puts Pandora’s content spending (as % of revenues) at a much higher level compared to Sirius XM. For the current year, Forbes expects the figure for Pandora to reduce to 52.6% and decline to 38% in the long run. If the company’s content spending was to come down to a level similar to that of Sirius XM, there could be close to 30% upside

ESPN Cancels Ron Burgundy Shot For Thursday

Will Ferrell's Ron Burgundy won't be appearing on ESPN's SportsCenter on Thursday, according to THR.

"Ron Burgundy's scheduled Thurs. appearance on @SportsCenter has been cancelled in light of the potential implications of any news from the State Attorney's press conference in Fla.," said ESPN's director of communications David Scott in a statement on Twitter. "

As of this time, there is no reschedule date for Ron Burgundy."

As ESPN and other outlets had reported, the Florida State Attorney's office will hold a news conference Thursday at 2 p.m. ET on the sexual assault allegations leveled at college quarterback Jameis Winston.

The actor's SportsCenter appearance was scheduled for 6 p.m. ET along with David Koechner as Champ Kind from Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues in a segment presented by Dodge Durango. (Ferrell's character also had been seen in multiple web promos for the automaker.)

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Meanwhile, Ron Burgundy, comedian Will Ferrell’s news anchor alter ego, took over Emerson College Wednesday, dishing on the state of journalism and entertaining students with his own unique grading system.

For one day only, Emerson’s communications school became the Ron Burgundy School of Communication in anticipation of the upcoming release of “Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues.”

Robin Quivers Sells NYCity Condo

Robin Quivers
Radio host Howard Stern’s right-hand woman Robin Quivers has sold her two-bedroom Lincoln Square condominium for $2.95 million, according to The Real Deal.

Quivers has been on Stern’s show since 1981. A Maryland native, she reportedly resided in Manhattan from the mid-1990s until her split from longtime boyfriend Tony – mysteriously referred to as “Mr. X” on the show – in 2007.

Quivers bought the apartment at 200 West End Avenue for $2.46 million in May 2008 and sold it to Ervin Shindell, co-founder of the Chicago-based hedge fund RoundKeep Capital advisors, and his wife, Colleen Murphy, according to records filed with the city on Monday. The deal closed Nov. 19.

Originally listed in July with an asking price of $3.15 million, the ask was reduced to $2.95 million three weeks later.

The 1,486-square-foot unit comes with nine-foot ceilings; park, city and river views; a windowed kitchen complete with a wine refrigerator; granite counters; and a breakfast bar, according to the listing on StreetEasy. The new owners will also have access to the building’s full-service amenities, which include a health club and garage.

Quivers currently resides in Long Beach Township, N.J.

B-C Radio: Dumpling-Eating Contest Ends in Tragedy

A man suffered severe brain damage after winning a radio station's dumpling-eating contest, his guardian claims in court, according to Courthouse News.

Samaljit Aulakh, through his guardian Kamaljeet Aulakh, sued South Asian Broadcasting Corp. CKYE 93.1 FM Red FM, in British Columbia Supreme Court.

He also sued the dumpling maker.

The radio station held an eating contest as part of a Diwali celebration in November 2012. Participants competed to win an iPhone by eating gulab jamuns, a South Asian cheese-based desert dumpling, made by defendant Nanak Foods.

Aulakh was the first to finish, but the victory was short-lived. He stood up and "immediately exhibited signs of distress in containing the gulab jamuns and the Red FM broadcaster advised him that if he did not contain them, or if he threw them up, he would not win the iPhone," the complaint states.

An employee gave him some water, but Aulakh choked, fell to the floor and lost consciousness. Emergency workers failed to clear his airway and he now suffers from total paralysis and relies on family members for care, including his wife and guardian, Kamaljeet Aulakh, according to the lawsuit.

Judge Sez SiriusXM Cannot Transfer Turtles Suit

Flo and Eddie
A California federal judge this week refused to allow Sirius XM Radio Inc. to move a $100 million putative class action alleging it illegally played songs recorded before 1972, finding the broadcaster hadn’t sufficiently argued in favor of transferring the suit to New York.

U.S. District Judge Philip S. Gutierrez ruled against moving the suit, saying the putative class led by members of the American rock band The Turtles wasn’t addressing the same laws as another action in New York.

The lead plaintiffs in the case are Flo & Eddie of The Turtles, the iconic band whose hits include "Happy Together," "It Ain't Me Babe" and "She'd Rather Be With Me."

The band has a history of bringing big cases, but the reason why this lawsuit, filed in L.A. Superior Court, commands notice comes down to the magical number of 1972, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Feb. 15, 1972, is the exact day on which sound recordings began falling under federal copyright protection.

For recorded music created before then, the situation is a bit more murky. The question this lawsuit addresses is: What laws cover those recordings?

Every day, SiriusXM transmits thousands of pre-1972 recordings and does so likely with the confidence that §114 of the Copyright Act gives them this authority. That statute carves out limitations on exclusive rights and also sets up the way that owners of recordings get compensated. Currently, the Copyright Royalty Board is the entity that sets statutory royalty rates for satellite radio, and SoundExchange is the entity that collects the royalties to pass along.

But it is the contention of Flo & Eddie, representing themselves and others similarly situated, that federal law can't be relied upon when dealing with pre-'72 music on satellite radio.

Until 2011, SiriusXM sent Sound Exchange a log of every song that was played along with a lump sum in royalities owed. The problem was that the log didn't include pre-1972 reocrdings, and payment wasn't broken down per song, meaning that royalties were distributed to all artists on Sirius' playlist. Two years ago, Sound Exchange requested that SiriusXM document everything that it was paying for, and SiriusXM has since stopped reporting pre-1972 recordings.

Roanoke Radio: Personality's Children Sue Over His Death

Seth Williamson
The children of the late WVTF 89.1 FM in Roanoke, VA radio personality Seth Williamson say in a lawsuit that he died from an overdose of painkillers after surgery and seek $10 million from a medical device maker and its former parent company .

According to, the lawsuit, filed Nov. 19 in federal court in Roanoke, said a medication pump used to assist Williamson was faulty in that hospital nurses could become confused while setting the device.

While experiencing pain after hernia repair at LewisGale Hospital Montgomery in Blacksburg, Williamson received analgesic medicine at five times the strength prescribed by his doctor, the lawsuit said.

The 62-year-old Blacksburg man died a short time later at the hospital of a “massive” overdose, the lawsuit said.

Named as defendants are Hospira Inc. of Lake Forest, Ill., which the lawsuit said brought the pump to market, and Abbott Laboratories Inc. based north of Chicago, which the suit said once owned Hospira. Neither company had a comment Wednesday.