Saturday, December 14, 2013

Saturday Aircheck: John Records Landecker On 89 WLS 1975

Part One....

Landecker began his radio career while in high school at a station in Ann Arbor, Michigan (WOIA-FM/WOIB-AM, now respectively WWWW-FM and WLBY).

He attended Michigan State University, working at stations in Lansing (WILS) and Philadelphia (WIBG, now WNTP) before becoming the evening jock on the 50,000 watt WLS 890 which broadcast from Chicago, Illinois in 1972.

The powerful WLS clear channel signal reached across 38 states after sundown, giving Landecker ratings that are unheard of in this day. In 1981 Landecker left Chicago for a stint on CFTR 680 in Toronto, Ontario.
Landecker returned to Chicago radio in 1984 on rocker WLUP 97.9 and WAGO (now WCFS-FM) 105.9. Landecker returned to WLS in 1985 and remained there until WLS switched to an all-talk format in 1989. After spending time in Cleveland at WPHR, 107.9 (now WENZ), he returned to Chicago in 1993, beginning a ten year run on Oldies 104.3 WJMK where he was the morning drive D.J. until 2003. While on WJMK, his show received the Achievement in Radio award of "Best Morning Show in Chicago" in 1997, and Radio and Records Award of "Best Oldies Morning Show in America" in 2001 and 2002. In 2006 Landecker started on True Oldies 94.7 WZZN (now WLS-FM) in Chicago where he was the weekday afternoon D.J. from 3-7pm until October 10, 2007.

Questioned throughout his career about the origin of his middle name, it was not, as most assumed, a stage name. His mother's maiden name was Records (her full name was Majorie Victoria Records as Landecker himself told during the 2008 BIG89 Rewind on 890 WLS AM) and was given to him at birth. "Records truly is my middle name" is a saying Landecker frequently uses on the air.

His autobiography, Records Truly is His Middle Name, is available at

December 14 In Radio History

In 1877...Ernst Werner von Siemens patents the first loudspeaker

In 1942...New York City Disc Jockey, Dave Herman, was born. Most notably heard on WNEW and WXRK.

In 1953...WWRL 105.1 FM in NYC signed on. Station is now WWPR.

In 1956...Disc jockey Alan Freed's second film, "Don't Knock The Rock," starring Freed, Alan Dale and Patricia Hardy, with performances by Little Richard, Bill Haley and His Comets, Dave Appell and the Applejacks, and the Treniers, opened in U.S. and Canadian movie theaters.

In 1977..."Saturday Night Fever," starring John Travolta and music by the Bee Gees, premiered in New York City.

In 1984...Broadcaster Howard Cosell retired from ABC-TV's "Monday Night Football."

In 2005...Walter A. Schwartz - GM at Musicradio 77 WABC died

Friday, December 13, 2013

Detroit Radio: Cumulus Flips WDRQ To Country

Cumulus announces the launch Friday of NASH FM 93.1, marking Cumulus’s Country entrance into Detroit. WDRQ /NASH FM 93.1 joins the growing list of NASH-branded Country stations. Cumulus will eventually have more than 60 owned-and-operated Country stations operating under the NASH brand.

WDRQ Doug 93.1 format was previously Adult Hits.  The station is introducing itself to Detroit by airing Country Christmas music.

Cumulus launched the NASH entertainment brand based on the Country music lifestyle in January of this year starting with the flagship NASH FM 94.7 in New York City. In addition to country radio stations, the NASH brand will include a NASH magazine, concerts/events, online content and television programming.

LISTEN-LINE: Click Here.

“I couldn’t think of a better city to launch our NASH brand right now. Detroit is everything country music represents – Made in America, for Americans and authentically America,” said John Dickey, co-COO and Executive Vice President of Cumulus. “Country is hugely popular in Detroit and the surrounding communities and we couldn’t be more excited to bring listeners and advertisers NASH FM 93.1.”

Detroit's Country Nash-FM will now battle CBS Radio's heritage country WYCD-FM  In the most recent NielsenAudio PPMs for Detroit, WYCD was #1 with a 7.9 share 6+.  Adult Hits WDRQ had a 2.5 share at #18.

Stern Prostitute Contest Winner Dies Before Claiming Winnings

The elderly grandpa who won a date with 2 prostitutes on the Howard Stern Show choked and died last night ... just before he was going to have sex for the first time in years ... TMZ has learned.

86-year-old Johnny Orris died in a Lake Tahoe hospital Thursdaynight ... after apparently choking on his steak at a local restaurant.

Orris appeared on the Stern show back in October with his grandson ... who had entered him in a  contest called "I Want To Get My Grandpa Laid."  Orris said his wife had died more than a decade ago ... and he hadn't had sex since.

On the show, Orris won a date with two prostitutes from the famed Bunny Ranch in Nevada ... and flew to Lake Tahoe to claim his prize.

Bunny Ranch owner Dennis Hof says Orris came to the ranch Thursday night and chose 2 gorgeous working girls he wanted to have sex with -- Caressa Kisses and Vanity.  But before consummating the date ... Orris went out for a nice dinner with his grandson, Ed.

Orris ordered the steak at Sage Room Steakhouse at Harvey's Lake Tahoe ... and began to choke on it.  Ed and the maitre d' immediately began CPR ... and Johnny was transported by ambulance to a hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Read More Now

Billboard Names Bruno Mars 'Artist of The Year'

Bruno Mars is locked into Billboard's top honor of 2013.

According to USAToday, the Locked Out of Heaven singer caps off a stellar year with the magazine's title of Artist of the Year. While the pop-culture sphere might have been a bit distracted by twerking, Mars spent the past 12 months racking up accolades and hits.

Chart-toppers off late 2012's Unorthodox Jukebox, such as Treasure, Locked Out of Heaven and When I Was Your Man, carried Mars through radio this year and garnered four Grammy nominations (he has 18 total).

"No one is handing Bruno Mars a record to make," Julie Greenwald, chairman/COO of Atlantic Records Group, told Billboard. "He's writing, producing with collaborative partners, singing, playing, choreographing – a quintuple threat who's great at executing his vision."

Mars, who will perform at the 2014 Super Bowl halftime show, came in No. 1 on eight of Billboard's year end lists, including "Hot 100 Artists," "Top Overall Artists," "Hot 100 Singles Airplay," "Hot Digital Songs," "Mainstream Top 40" and "Pop Digital Songs." That's a lot of hot.

Aussie Radio: 2DayFM Hires Spice Girl Melanie Brown

Jules Lund, Merrick Watts, Sophie Monk, Melanie Brown
Top DJs Kyle Sandilands and Jackie O are moving to a new station after running the breakfast show on Sydney's 2DayFM since 2005.

After months of speculation over who would replace them, SCA radio bosses have announced Brown will sit on am ensemble of four new hosts on the Sydney station.

She will broadcast the show alongside actress Sophie Monk, and long-running DJs Merrick Watts and Jules Lund.

Brown will split her time between the U.S. and Australia to manage the job.

She says, "I'm so excited, this is going to be one hell of a roller-coaster ride. I just can't wait, to be honest."

Brown has appeared as a judge on Australia's The X Factor as well as working as a presenter on the country's version of Dancing with the Stars. She currently sits on the panel of America's Got Talent.

Southern Cross Austereo Head of Content Craig Bruce said: “I’m one happy chappy. We're obviously really excited about the new line-up. We're looking forward to bringing some new ideas and fresh, original thinking to 2day breakfast in 2014.”

Nielsen Ranks Top Audio Formats

As the year draws to a close NielsenAudio reflects on the format preferences of radio listeners in the U.S., where more than 90 percent of Americans use the medium on a weekly basis.

In 2013, Nielsen reports Country grew among younger listeners and set all-time highs for audience shares across the 48 Nielsen portable people meter (PPM) markets; Pop Contemporary Hit Radio (Pop CHR) mature by increasing its listening share in the 25-54 demographic; spoken word (News/Talk and Sports) made a big rebound during the fall; and both Urban Contemporary and Hot Adult Contemporary had banner years—among their best ever.

Radio Missing Opportunities To Engage Listeners On Twitter

A new study from the social media analytics company Brandwatch shows radio stations are missing opportunities to engage listeners.

Their study sampled 20 radio stations in the US and on average, less than one percent of their listeners (0.06%) Tweet about radio. This is 10-times less frequently than listeners in the UK

Key findings:

  • Sports stations interacted with their audience the most, and pop stations did so the least. Radio broacasters are missing a huge opportunity to foster a closer relationship with listeners.
  • Radio stations are not interacting with their listeners; instead, 75% of their interactions are with celebrities and brands (clients)
  • Tweets that mention brands receive less interaction from fans.
  • Tweets featuring celebrities, links and pictures were more popular than those without.
  • Followers were 54% more likely to engage with a DJ’s Twitter account than with a radio station’s Twitter account
  • Over half, 52%, of official TV show Twitter accounts engage with fans compared to just 26% of radio stations.

Celebrity culture is a main driver of conversation, with over a quarter of all listener mentions relating to celeb news, interviews of songs.  Listeners are proud of their cities and reference to their home city was one of the top mentioned topics.

The top periods for audience tweet activity are before midday and each evening. Radio stations are taking advantage of some peak times but are missing  out on other key opportunities.  For example, the peak moment for  audience chatter is around 11am, yet radio stations focus activity much later  in the day.

Of all DJ's Tweets, only 5.5% are about radio. This leaves plenty of room for radio stationsd to further use DJs to enhance their social strategy.

On average, there was a 68% increase in the volume of interactions when a Tweet contained an image and a 67% increase when there was a link.

Read the entire report: Click Here.

FCC Votes To Consider In-Flight Cell Phone Use

The Federal Communications Commission voted 3-2 Thursday to consider lifting its ban on in-flight cell phone use, according to CNN.

On the same day, the federal Department of Transportation and three members of Congress took steps to block those calls.

Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx said that he is looking into the possibility of banning in-flight calls, citing its aviation consumer protection authority.

The DOT will determine whether allowing calls is "fair to consumers."

Many people consider the idea of cell phone conversations annoying in the close confines of a plane, and some are casting it as a consumer rights issue.

"I'm the last person in the world who wants to listen to someone talking to me while I fly across the country," FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler -- who proposed the change -- told a congressional panel Thursday. "But we are the technical agency, and we will make the rules for the way the new technology works."

The Association of Flight Attendants, a union that has been leading a campaign against cell phone calls in-flight, promised to continue lobbying against the proposal.

The FCC is now taking public input on the proposal, and an agency statement says officials will consider consumer and stakeholder opinion before taking any final action. The agency offers more information on its website, including a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) and a means of filing comments online.

Read More Now

RI Radio: Gov. Backs Union In Oust John DePetro Effort

John DePetro
A union-led campaign to drive WPRO 630 AM talk-show host John DePetro off the Rhode Island airwaves has the support of some political leaders, according to The Providence Journal,  including one of DePetro's favorite targets: Governor Chafee.

Late Thursday, a spokesman for Gen. Treas. Gina Raimondo said she "will not go on any WPRO talk show until WPRO ends their relationship with John DePetro."

Chafee spokeswoman Christine Hunsinger said Chafee's decision had nothing to do with DePetro's frequent criticism of him as "Governor Gump.''  She said for Chafee, "it's about hate-speech.''

The controversy was sparked by comments DePetro made about the public employees protesting outside a September "Women Changing Rhode Island'' fundraiser for state Raimondo at the Roger Williams Park Casino.

The union campaign to get DePetro off the air has focused on his use of the words "union hags'' and "whores'' to describe the protesters -- including the female leader of the Cranston teachers' union -- a day later. He has since apologized for his choice of words.

DePetro is on vacation according to WPRO. Thursday evening, his lawyer, Tim Dodd, responded to Chafee's comments.

"John DePetro has been a vocal critic of Governor Chafee and he has questioned many of the Governor's policy decisions and the priorities of this administration, including his  past refusal to call a Christmas tree a Christmas tree.

Read More Now

Toronto Radio: CFNY-FM's Blundell Apologizes For Gay Remarks

Dean Blundell
A Toronto shock-jock show host has apologized for making "homophobic" jokes about a sexual assault trial for which the show's producer and co-host served as jury foreman.

According to, the apology came a day after a judge rejected a call for an inquiry into the conduct of Derek Welsman, who gabbed and chortled about the case before and after the verdict on the Dean Blundell Show on CFNY-FM 1021 FM The Edge.

Welsman was the foreman of a jury that convicted a man for sexually assaulting three men he met at a Toronto bathhouse.

"We both made rude, homophobic and inappropriate remarks, which were offensive and unacceptable. We offended a lot of listeners, our families and our friends," Dean Blundell said in an audio clip posted to the show's website Wednesday.

"Those conversations were not entertaining. They were plain and simply wrong. For this, I sincerely apologize."

On air, he and the other radio personalities guffawed as they mocked gay men who visit bathhouses and the intelligence of the sex assault victims. They snickered as they imagined the perpetrator's excitement for prison showers.

The Dean Blundell Show has been repeatedly sanctioned for homophobic and discriminatory views, the most recent censure coming in August. In that case, the Canadian Broadcast Standards Council required the radio station to submit a plan outlining how it will "ensure that no other breaches" occur in its broadcasts.

Corus Entertainment, which owns CFNY, said Welsman and Blundell's comments do not represent the views of the company.  The company posted this statement on the station website:

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Cumulus Closes On Westwood One Deal

Cumulus Media Inc. announced Thursday that it has completed the previously announced acquisition of WestwoodOne, Inc., formerly known as Dial Global, Inc., for $260 million in cash, consisting of approximately $45 million attributable to the equity of WWO and the retirement of $215 million of debt of WWO.  Cumulus used cash on hand, including approximately $238 million in cash proceeds from the Company’s previously completed sale of 53 radio stations in 12 small and mid-sized markets in November 2013 to Townsquare Media, LLC.

The acquisition of WestwoodOne will add sports, news, talk, music and programming services content – enabling Cumulus to provide a wider variety of options to approximately 10,000 U.S. radio stations, other media platforms and international platforms.  New content acquired includes NFL, NCAA, NASCAR, Olympics, AP Radio News, NBC News, the GRAMMY Awards and other popular programming.

Chicago Radio: Cubs New Radio Analyst Is Ron Coomer

Ron Coomer
Ron Coomer will be the Cubs' new radio analyst.

The Chicago Tribune has confirmed he agreed to a two-deal that will be announced Friday to replace Keith Moreland in the WGN 720 AM booth alongside play-by-play man Pat Hughes.

He became the clear front-runner as the other reported finalist, Todd Hollandsworth, took a full-time position with the MLB Radio Network, according to industry sources.

Coomer, 47, played for the Cubs in 2001 during a nine-year career mostly as a corner infielder. Most recently, Coomer has been a TV studio analyst for the Twins.

LA Radio: Report..Jerry Hairston To Join Dodger Broadcasts

MLB player Jerry Hairston announced his retirement Wednesday, following a 16-year Major League career that included a World Series title with the Yankees in 2009.

It appears that Hairston will remain in baseball and with the team he played for last season, the Dodgers. The 37-year-old has a deal to serve as a pregame and postgame analyst for the club's television broadcasts, according to Bruce Levine of Chicago's WSCR-AM radio.

However, the Dodgers have not announced the deal.

Hairston comes from a baseball family. His grandfather, father and uncle all played in the Majors, while his brother Scott is an outfielder with the Nationals. The two played together with the Padres in 2010.

OC Register to Start-Up Los Angles Edition

The co-owner and publisher of the Orange County Register announced Thursday that the company will move broadly into Los Angeles County early next year and publish a new, seven-day-a-week newspaper, the Los Angeles Register.

“We will be delivering a Los Angeles Register to the entirety of Los Angeles County,” Aaron Kushner told Orange County Register staff at a town hall meeting.

Kushner said specifics of the expansion are being worked out but that the new newspaper will be launched “soon” and will emphasize local Los Angeles news just like the Orange County Register covers its communities.

“It will be a daily newspaper of not quite the heft of the Orange County Register,” Kushner said, adding the publication will be larger in total pages than any of the existing newspapers in Los Angeles. In addition, he said, the Register would launch an unspecified number of Los Angeles community weeklies.

The region currently is served by the Los Angeles Times and the MediaNews Group, which publishes nine papers, including the Los Angeles Daily News in the San Fernando Valley, the Long Beach Press-Telegram and Pasadena Star-News.

Kushner said the Los Angeles Register will use existing Orange County Register staff, noting he had added more than 200 people to its news staff in the past year, more than the size of most newsrooms in the country. Kushner said the Los Angeles edition will be staffed by journalists working in Los Angeles covering local news.

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Report: Digital Video Is Set To Take-Over the World

A new report by Citigroup highlights how web-based video is consumed across the globe, and the opportunities and challenges it presents to established TV players.

According to a story at,  Digital delivery is set, gradually but inexorably, to displace broadcast and cable television as the dominant form of video consumption, according to a new report from Citigroup that offers new details on the factors affecting that spread.

The 31-page in-depth report, by a group of analysts led by Jason Bazinet, breaks down key factors in the global spread of online video, including broadband adoption and speeds, traditional pay-TV penetration rates, and the number of free broadcast channels available.

Historically, the barriers to enter to the TV business have been both high and expensive. If you wanted to be in the TV business, you needed scarce spectrum to deliver broadcast signals, or lots of money to lay cable pipes or launch satellites into space. Now, as Bazinet’s team points out, all you need is a web server.

According to Citi’s analysts, this basic change, coupled with increasing broadband availability and the proliferation of apps, is altering the TV landscape from “the push-based delivery of linear channels over closed TV systems, to the pull-based delivery of specific shows via an app over an open system.”

Put more simply, consumers prefer loading up Netflix or Hulu and streaming shows over the web on their terms as opposed to having to be home at a certain time to watch their favorite programs or having to subscribe to a pay-TV service to gain access to video-on-demand content.

The report cites as evidence to support its theory the fact that U.S. households owning a TV have declined two straight years, and a decline in cable TV ratings in recent years that has lead to a corresponding slowdown in the pace of advertising growth.

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Townsquare Media Acquires Events Portfolio

MAC Events, a consumer and trade show producer with shows in New Jersey, Virginia and Pennsylvania, has been acquired by Greenwich, Ct.-based Townsquare Media, according to Trade Show News Network.

“To partner with a company that shares our vision, and who operate the premier media assets in our home market is the perfect way for MAC Events to thrive for the next 40 years,” said Kevin McLaughlin, a partner at MAC Events.

He added, “I am excited about the future as the combination of Townsquare and MAC Events will strengthen both our offering for exhibitors and attendees.”

McLaughlin has joined Townsquare and will continue to operate the business on a day-to-day basis. Similarly, the entire sales team from MAC Events has joined Townsquare and will continue to book and produce the events.

Its current slate of consumer shows includes the Garden State Home Show, Jersey Shore Home Show, Ocean County Home Show, South Jersey Home Show, New Jersey Flower & Garden Show, New Jersey Women’s Expo and the MAC Events Home and Garden Show (in Richmond, Va.).

“We are excited to integrate MAC Events into our solutions for local and regional business owners who are searching for new ways to spend quality time with their customers and, as importantly, their prospects,” said Dhruv Prasad, executive vice president, Live Events for Townsquare.

Indy Radio: Garth Brooks Calls WFMS 95.5 FM

Jim, Deb & Kevin of the WFMS 95.5 FM Morning Show in Indianapolis got a surprise call Thursday from Garth Brooks.  Not only a surprise, but an early surprise as Garth called at 5:40 am.

They discussed his recently announced world tour, starting Fall 2014 - which will be stopping in Indy next year! Garth and the gang go into details on his life as a father, his upcoming music plans and artists he enjoys listening to right now.

Instagram Direct Unveils Private Photo-Sharing, Messaging

Thursday at a press event in New York, Instagram founder Kevin Systrom has announced that the photo-sharing service is introducing private photo-sharing and messaging, accord to TechCrunch.

The feature is called Instagram Direct.

Instagram has always been a mostly public social network, with a broadcast structure instead of connections based on mutual friendship, like Facebook. The introduction of Instagram Direct marks a new phase for the company.

Now, users who follow each other will be able to send each other private chat-like messages, which can include photos or videos (of course). Previously, users have only been able to like or publicly comment on pictures.

MI Radio: WHTC 'Juke' Van Oss Celebrates 90th Birthday

Juke Van Oss (Sentinel photo)
The world has changed a lot since 1923. Just ask Julius “Juke” Van Oss, Holland’s long-time on-air radio personality for WHTC 1450 AM in Holland, MI, according to the Holland Sentinel.

Marking his 90th birthday this past Monday, Van Oss talked about some of the changes he has witnessed over the years.

Van Oss, who grew up in the Graafschap area, has been an icon in the Holland community since 1959 when he co-hosted the iconic Holland Talk Radio show “Talk of the Town,” with Bill Gargano, becoming the show’s sole host in 1980.

“I went to radio school in the service, so I knew a little bit about radio,” Van Oss said. “Then I got my HAM radio license and figured ‘Shucks, I might as well do it commercially.’ So I did and have been doing it for 62 years.”

Van Oss did not start as an on-air personality, however. His first job with WHTC was as an engineer. He noted parts of the industry have changed drastically over the years — moving from “spinning records,” to streaming from satellites.

“I became an announcer at WHTC when they did away with engineers,” Van Oss said.

“Despite changes in radio, the show has remained pretty much the same as it was in the 1960s. It’s what I call ‘back fence’ radio. People can call in and talk, we even used to swap recipes. Today I do a lot of interviews with people. I’m not adversarial. I just let them talk.”

Van Oss said his plans for the next few years are to keep on living and working.

Read More Now 

DC Radio: Fresh 94.7 Listeners Help Meet Wreath Goal

Monday morning Tommy McFly at WIAD 94.7 Fresh FM announced Wreaths Across America was more than 35,000 wreaths short of their goal to cover “Section 60″ and other portions of Arlington National Cemetery.

The area is the final resting place for many Iraq and Afghanistan service members.

The Tommy Show invited Wayne Hansen from WAA to share the story and told listeners how they could Get Involved.

On Thursday Hansen gave The Tommy Show an update — the goal was reached! Listeners donated one, two, four, 20 or 100 wreaths [at $15 a piece] to help make the WAA Project a tremendous success.

R.I.P.: Memphis Radio Personality Captain Curtis Lee

Memphis radio legend and former WDIA 1070 AM announcer Captain Curtis Lee Braxton died Wednesday after a brief illness.

Lee joined the stable of WDIA stars back in the early 1990s. For more than a decade he entertained listeners with his quick wit and gift of gab.

"My condolences he will be missed," said WDIA announcer Bev Johnson. "My condolences to his wife Ms. B. [and] all the kids ... But my condolences."

WDIA's Bobby O'jay also talked about Lee on his morning radio show Thursday.

Lee reportedly was working Cumulus Urban Oldies WRBO 103.5 FM.

December 13 In Radio History

In 1924...KOA-AM, Denver, Colorado, began broadcasting. KOA was originally owned by General Electric. The station started with 5,000 watts, and in 1927, increased to 12,500 watts. In the early 1930s, power was raised to the current level of 50,000 watts. KOA is the dominant clear-channel station on 850 AM.

In 1964...The American Radio Relay League was founded for HAM radio operators.

In 1974...MC Flashbacks to the year-ender edition of Radio&Records from December 13, 1974.  If you remember, StreetTalk, Parallels...then you remember R&R. The Back Page Chart shows quite a variety...everything from Jethro Tull to Bobby Vinton!

To Read More of this R&R Issue: Click Here.

In 1999...The performing rights organization Broadcast Music Incorporated declared "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'" to be the most played (BMI) song of the century on American radio and television, with more than eight million airings. The original and most famous recording of the song is by the Righteous Brothers.

"Never My Love" was the second most-played song, followed by "Yesterday," "Stand By Me," and "Can't Take My Eyes Off You." Rounding out the Top Ten were "(Sittin' On) The Dock Of The Bay," "Mrs. Robinson," "Baby I Need Your Loving," "Rhythm Of The Rain," and "Georgia On My Mind."

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Cumulus Takes a Significant Stake in Rdio

Cumulus Media Inc. and Rdio announce a powerful content, promotion and advertising partnership that provides listeners with a one-stop solution for their audio needs while offering advertisers new opportunities to engage with consumers.

The strategic partnership will provide Cumulus with a financial interest in the larger digital music ecosystem and allows Rdio to launch free, ad-supported products in the United States while accelerating the activation of new users and subscribers.

Cumulus will obtain a significant equity stake in Pulser Media, Rdio’s parent company, in exchange for exclusive content, media and on-air promotional commitments over a fiveyear period.  In addition, Rdiowill leverage the Cumulus sales infrastructure to monetize its upcoming ad-supported free products, including music on-demand, custom playlists andexclusive content curated by Cumulus.

Available in over 30 countries, Rdio is the digital music service founded by the co-creator of Skype. On Rdio, music fans discover, play and share more than 20 million songs and build a digital music collection that’s available to stream on the web, on mobile and offline.  Rdio offers listeners an ever-growing catalog and an endless variety of passive listening options, including personalized radio stations.  The New York Times has recently called Rdio its “go-to music app” for its “beautiful design and user interface,” while Mashable has lauded it as the “music discovery version of a candy store.”

“This partnership leverages our premier broadcast and content assets along with Rdio’s acclaimed digital audio platform -- enabling consumers to listen to whatever they want, whenever they want, however they want,” said Lew Dickey, CEO of Cumulus.

“We are thrilled to be partnering with Cumulus and their robust network of radio stations and premium content,” says Drew Larner, CEO of Rdio. “This monumental deal is the first time a digital and a broadcast platform have come together in this way and we’re eager to bring the Rdio experience to the greater Cumulus listening audience.”

RBC Capital Markets initiated and facilitated this transaction.

Predictions Of Radio's Demise Called "Utter B-S"

Nielsen's Steve Hasker
The recession is the new normal.

What radio knows about its listeners needs to change and fragmentation of the audience makes reaching your target listener tricky, but not impossible.

According to RadioWorld, those are the overall points made by Nielsen President of Global Product Leadership Steve Hasker Wednesday in Baltimore.

Speaking to attendees of the Nielsen Audio Client Conference and Jacobs Media Summit, Hasker gave those who interpret audience data for their stations a glimpse into how Nielsen views what it hopes to give its clients so they can make money.

Calling the current economy “the new normal,” Hasker says the recession is business as usual and that means “as you think about your business going forward, don’t expect rapid change.”

“Don’t expect a nice glide path into growth,” he said, as he believes economic recovery will be “a bumpy process.”

While Nielsen is noticing more fragmentation of the audience as Americans tune to radio, TV, online and mobile, that doesn’t mean radio and TV are doomed, he said. He actually called that “utter BS,” and acknowledged that while having more media choices makes radio’s path more difficult path to navigate, fragmentation actually means consumers are consuming more content.

However, radio needs to basically relearn the habits of young listeners, Hasker said, because youth behave differently from their elders in two ways: they are very active on social media and care more about their own content than what they hear from an advertiser. They are also more influenced by their friends than is the rest of the audience.

Read More Now

Salem Emerges As Major Player In Conservative Media

Salem Communications announced Tuesday that it is purchasing Twitchy, a blog run by conservative pundit Michelle Malkin, for an undisclosed sum.

According to Bloomberg BusinessWeek, the Twitchy acquisition adds to Salem’s growing Internet portfolio, which includes conservative opinion sites (such as and and Christian faith sites (such as and

The move may signal that the same forces currently driving consolidation in the digital news industry at large are starting to gain momentum among the ranks of conservative news publishers online.

In theory, bringing more of the sites under a smaller number of roofs will appeal to the ad buyers who oversee rising digital marketing budgets while simultaneously providing cost savings for the publishers. Thus, the increasing pressure to consolidate.

Salem is well-positioned for a buying spree, in large part due to the profit generated from its 102 radio stations throughout the U.S. In fiscal year 2012, Salem generated $108 million of gross profit on $229 million of revenue. Of the company’s operating income, significantly more came from its radio group ($47 million) than from its websites ($3.7 million).

Now Salem is essentially using the radio profit to help expand the Internet side of its media portfolio. It’s a strategy that makes sense given the broader trendlines in advertising. According to Nielsen, global ad spending in the second quarter of 2013 increased 26.6 percent on the Internet while declining 0.9 percent on radio.

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Jeff Sottolano Named Director, Programming For CBS Radio

Jeff Sottolano
Jeff Sottolano has been named Director, Programming, CBS Radio, it was announced Wednesday by Chris Oliviero, Executive Vice President, Programming, CBS Radio.  The appointment is effective on Thursday, Jan. 2, 2014 with the position being based in New York.  Sottolano currently serves as Program Director of CBS Radio’s WIP-AM/FM in Philadelphia.

"Jeff has consistently and successfully answered every challenge he’s faced during his career at CBS Radio,” said Oliviero.  “With such diverse format experience and a respected reputation, both in and outside our company, I have no doubt he is ready to tackle this exciting and critical next chapter.  Jeff will be a great complement to our corporate programming team.”

Sottolano will support program directors in 27 major markets to further drive ratings growth at CBS Radio’s 126 stations.  He will focus on identifying and recruiting on-air talent, both established and up-and-coming, as well as seek out new format opportunities.

Sottolano began working with CBS Radio in 2001 when he joined WZNE-FM in Rochester, N.Y. as an intern.  He was named Promotions Director in 2002, and two years later was promoted to Program Director/On-Air Personality where he helped lead the station through significant programming updates that resulted in ratings increases.

In 2006, Sottolano transferred to WYSP-FM in Philadelphia where he assumed a variety of programming and marketing roles during his tenure, including Program Director beginning in 2008.  He was instrumental in launching the Danny Bonaduce Show.

Sottolano assumed programming oversight of WIP in 2011 when the AM sports station premiered a simulcast on WYSP as SportsRadio 94WIP.  The two stations currently broadcast local and national programming with CBS Sports Radio featured on 610AM.  WIP’s signature properties include play-by-play coverage of Eagles football and Phillies baseball, as well as “Wing Bowl,” an annual competitive eating contest.

In addition, Sottolano created the programming lineup of Phillies 24/7 on CBS Radio’s WOGL-HD4, the first ever HD multicast station dedicated to a MLB team, and works closely with the local Philadelphia stations’ digital assets.

Syracuse Radio: CCM+E Appoints Yacobush Market Manager

Rick Yacobush
One longtime veteran of local radio will be replaced by another, when Clear Channel Syracuse Market Manager Joel Delmonico calls it a career at the end of the month, according to  The company announced General Sales Manager Rick Yacobush as the heir to the company’s highest-ranking position in Syracuse.

Yacobush has nearly 40 years of experience in the Syracuse radio market, starting out on-air as “Rick Charles” for 1490 WOLF before transitioning into sales.  Yacobush has been with stations that would eventually become the Clear Channel Syracuse cluster for the past 26 years, with 18 of those years in management.

Kevin Legrett, Clear Channel Senior VP of Operations Northeast, says “Rick’s unique ability to maximize our assets will allow us to serve the community as well as our advertisers in a multi-platform fashion.”

Current Market Manager Joel Delmonico announced last month that he will retire by the end of the year, following more than 30 years in Syracuse radio, including 21 years as market manager.  Yacobush officially takes over on January 1, 2014.

Clear Channel’s Syracuse cluster includes country powerhouse WBBS B104.7 FM, top 40 WWHT Hot 107.9 FM , mainstream adult contemporary WYYY Y94 FM, urban adult contemporary WHEN Power 620 AM , and NewsRadio WSYR 570 AM / 106.9 FM.

The company also announced Wednesday GSM Barbara Miller was promoted to Director of Sales.

NYC Radio: WHTZ To Broadcast Jingle Ball

For the first time, Friday night’s 7:30 Jingle Ball at Madison Square Garden will be simulcast over WHTZ 100.3 FM, Z100, according to The NY Daily News.

That includes every act from the opener, Jason Derulo, to the closing antics of Miley Cyrus.

In between: Fall Out Boy, Pitbull, Robin Thicke, Ariana Grande, Fifth Harmony, Austin Mahone, Macklemore, Enrique Iglesias, Selena Gomez and more. If it’s not a complete who’s who of top 40 pop in 2013, it’s the best class picture anyone is apt to snap this year.

Those who want to watch as well as listen can stream the show live on Yahoo, and those who want to savor the highlights can catch them in a two-hour special Dec. 18 at 8 p.m. on CW.

“We’ve been working a long time to bring Jingle Ball to more fans,” says Tom Poleman, president of national programming for WHTZ parent Clear Channel — and not only with streaming. Versions of Jingle Ball will visit more than a dozen cities this year. It’s a model that Clear Channel could use in the future with other music formats, such as country.

But the Jingle Ball mission, says Poleman, remains unchanged. “We want to put the biggest names on one stage,” he says.

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Ranger's Eric Nadel Wins Frisk Award For Broadcast Excellence

Eric Nadel
Texas Rangers radio play-by-play voice Eric Nadel has won the Ford C. Frick Award for excellence in baseball broadcasting, according to ESPN.  He will be honored on Saturday, July 26, 2014, in Cooperstown, N.Y., as part of Hall of Fame weekend.

This was Nadel's fourth consecutive year as a finalist for the award, given annually by the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum.

Next season will be Nadel's 20th as the lead voice on radio broadcasts and 36th year of broadcasting Rangers baseball. It's the longest tenure of any announcer in the history of the franchise and the second-longest continuous current stint with one team in the American League.

He was inducted into the club's Hall of Fame in 2012.

Nadel joined the Rangers in 1979 and called games on television and radio during his first three seasons. Starting in 1982, he and Mark Holtz were the radio duo for 13 seasons before Holtz, who passed away in 1997, moved over to television in 1995.

Nadel, a graduate of Brown, got his start calling football and hockey games on the university's radio station. He also had stints with minor league hockey teams in Minnesota and Oklahoma City before landing in the Dallas/Fort Worth area.

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LA Radio: Dave Styles Crosses The Hall At CCM+E

Dave Styles
102.7 KIIS-FM overnight personality Dave Styles is moving on up to a better time slot. However, he's crossding the hall to make it happen.

Styles is taking over afternoon on KBIG104.3 MYfm. He replaces Damien Fahey.

"I'm pumped to be doing afternoons on an incredible station that has Los Angeles buzzing," said Styles, who also serves as the in-stadium entertainment host for the Los Angeles Dodgers.   He also hosts a syndicated Australian show, The Hot Hits: Live From L.A.

 "The opportunity to continue working amongst friends I've made over my 10 years here, makes it that much sweeter," Styles added.

Replacing Styles on KIIS-FM is Alex Gervasi, who currently does middays on KHFI 96.7 Kiss FM, Austin.

CCM+E L.A. VP/Programming and MYfm PD Andrew Jeffries said, "The evolution of both KIIS & MYfm continues -- Dave and Alex fit seamlessly into our world, and they're great talents -- it's their time to shine."

LA Radio: KDAY Is Sold, New Owner Plans To Keep Hip-Hop

Classic R&B and hip-hop radio station KDAY 93.5 FM has been sold to Meruelo Media, a Los Angeles company that has been expanding its holdings.

Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed, according to the LA Times.

The station had been on the market for more than two years. Earlier this year, another company attempted a nearly $20-million deal to buy KDAY from Magic Broadcasting of Florida, but that deal fell apart.

The previous group, RBC Communications, had planned to switch the format to Mandarin language, which startled some longtime listeners. Under its new owners, the station will remain an English-language outlet.

KDAY 93.5 FM 60dBu Coverage
Meruelo executives said Wednesday they also intend to keep the old-school hip-hop format, which should cheer fans of the station who earlier this year launched a social media campaign, Save KDAY, and collected signatures to protest a potential change in programming.

Meruelo Media plans to invest in the station to make it a more robust player in L.A. -- the nation's largest radio market with an estimated $500 million a year in advertising spending.

KDAY has a rich history in Los Angeles.  In the 1980s, the original KDAY-AM (1580) station was the first 24-hour hip-hop station in the U.S., helping launch the careers of such rappers as Dr. Dre and LL Cool J.  But the station was sold in 1991 to Los Angeles real estate mogul Fred Sands for $7.2 million. Sands flipped it to a business news station with the call letters KBLA.

Investors revived the KDAY brand in 2004. They reformatted a Spanish-language FM station, KZAB, and promised a return to the previous station's hip-hop roots under the banner of KDAY 93.5 FM. Over the years, the station underwent several programming changes.

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550+ Stations Airing The Sounds of The Season

BRS Media's Web-Radio, the Official Holiday Internet Radio Directory, announced Wednesday that well over 550 Internet only and terrestrial AM/FM radio stations featuring seasonal favorites are streaming online this year. Listeners can "Tune-In" a record number of online webcasts and sites that broadcast Christmas music from around the world.

For the 18th consecutive year Web-Radio features Christmas stations and holiday Internet radio streaming Online. Internet listeners can choose from hundreds of stations that are broadcasting holiday music 24/7. The number of holiday stations on the Internet continues to climb; currently 559 stations are streaming online. The total number of Christmas stations streaming continues to grow year over year.

"It's extremely exciting to see the growth in the number of Holiday stations webcasting online." remarked George T. Bundy, Chairman & CEO of BRS Media Inc., "Internet Radio listeners are just one click away from hundreds of stations streaming holiday cheer. Whether at Work, at Home, on the Mobile Phone, or Shopping Online, listeners have a worldwide variety of Christmas stations to choose from, everything from Classic Standards & Smooth Jazz to Oldies & Country are all online."

The Web-Radio Christmas section includes everything from Christmas Classics and Smooth Jazz, to Romanian Traditional Christmas Carols and Classic Christmas Oldies. The Christmas Music section is available at:

ESPN Refuses 'Jesus' Commerical

ESPN blasted after reportedly refusing Catholic hospital ad due to ‘problematic’ mention of Jesus.

Spotify Adds Free Access On Smartphones, Tablets

Spotify is expanding its mobile presence with free access to its music catalogue on smartphones and tablets.
On tablets, all users (not just Premium subscribers) will find the same experience they encounter on the desktop, according to PC Mag.  Smartphone users will be a tad more restricted, but can still access all their Spotify playlists.

Previously, non-paying Spotify users could only listen to Spotify Radio on the mobile apps. But now, they can discover new music, save, shuffle, and share.

In the mood to listen to Lady Gaga or Phil Collins without interruption from similar artists? Just search for a particular singer, hit "shuffle play," and listen to their entire catalogue.

If you'd rather discover new music, or are looking for inspiration at the gym or during Christmas tree trimming, visit the Browse option to find themed playlists (pictured), curated by Spotify employees for various moods, genres, and moments.

All Spotify users, however, can now get the Led out, thanks to a new partnership between the music-streaming company and legendary rock band Led Zeppelin. The group's Swan Song/Atlantic catalog is now available exclusively on Spotify.

In a slow rollout, the first two albums (Led Zeppelin and Led Zeppelin II) are online now. Each day through Saturday, two more albums will hit Spotify; on Sunday, the final six will be available, including the 2012 album Celebration Day.

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December 12 In Radio History

In 1896...Guglielmo Marconi gave the first public demonstration of radio at Toynbee Hall, London.

In 1901...Marconi sends first Atlantic wireless transmission

Italian physicist and radio pioneer Guglielmo Marconi succeeds in sending the first radio transmission across the Atlantic Ocean, disproving detractors who told him that the curvature of the earth would limit transmission to 200 miles or less. The message--simply the Morse-code signal for the letter "s"--traveled more than 2,000 miles from Poldhu in Cornwall, England, to Signal Hill in Newfoundland, Canada.

Born in Bologna, Italy, in 1874 to an Italian father and an Irish mother, Marconi studied physics and became interested in the transmission of radio waves after learning of the experiments of the German physicist Heinrich Hertz. He began his own experiments in Bologna beginning in 1894 and soon succeeded in sending a radio signal over a distance of 1.5 miles. Receiving little encouragement for his experiments in Italy, he went to England in 1896. He formed a wireless telegraph company and soon was sending transmissions from distances farther than 10 miles. In 1899, he succeeded in sending a transmission across the English Channel. That year, he also equipped two U.S. ships to report to New York newspapers on the progress of the America's Cup yacht race. That successful endeavor aroused widespread interest in Marconi and his wireless company.

Signal Hill, Newfoundland
Marconi's greatest achievement came on December 12, 1901, when he received a message sent from England at St. John's, Newfoundland. The transatlantic transmission won him worldwide fame. Ironically, detractors of the project were correct when they declared that radio waves would not follow the curvature of the earth, as Marconi believed. In fact, Marconi's transatlantic radio signal had been headed into space when it was reflected off the ionosphere and bounced back down toward Canada. Much remained to be learned about the laws of the radio wave and the role of the atmosphere in radio transmissions, and Marconi would continue to play a leading role in radio discoveries and innovations during the next three decades.

In 1909, he was jointly awarded the Nobel Prize in physics with the German radio innovator Ferdinand Braun. After successfully sending radio transmissions from points as far away as England and Australia, Marconi turned his energy to experimenting with shorter, more powerful radio waves. He died in 1937, and on the day of his funeral all British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) stations were silent for two minutes in tribute to his contributions to the development of radio.

In 1915...Legendary singer Frank Sinatra, dubbed "Ol' Blue Eyes" and the "Chairman of the Board," was born. He died May 14, 1998 at 82.

In 1957...KEX, Portland, Oregon Disc Jockey Al Priddy, was fired for playing Elvis Presley's rendition of "White Christmas." He violated the radio station's ban against the song. The station had banned Presley’s interpretations of Christmas carols, believing that such a sexually-charged performer had no business recording religious music.

In 1961...Ham radio satellite Oscar 1 was launched with military Discoverer 36

In 1971...David Sarnoff, who founded the National Broadcasting Company (NBC) and throughout most of his career led the Radio Corporation of America (RCA), died at age 80.

In 1995...the CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) announced the Radio Canada International service would end on March 31.

In 2003...Unkle Roger McCall, a long-time DJ on WCMF-FM, Rochester, New York, was fatally wounded by a gunshot in a robbery attempt.  His killer has never been brought to justice.

In 2008...Spike O'Dell did his last broadcast on WGN-AM. He spent 21 years with the station, 8 of them doing mornings.

In 2012...Veteran broadcaster (KABC-Los Angeles, KLAC-Los Angeles, KIEV-Los Angeles, KGIL-Los Angeles, KING-Seattle) Ray Briem, who ruled the Los Angeles overnight airwaves with his radio talk show for 27 years (1967-1994), died of cancer at 82.