Saturday, February 8, 2014

Cumulus Confirms 'America's Morning Show' Rollout

As we posted earlier this week, Cumulus confirmed Friday the latest additions to the NASH Country music and lifestyle brand with the national expansion of “America’s Morning Show,” hosted by Blair Garner live from Nashville.

“America’s Morning Show” is the newest addition to NASH, joining other long-form content including “Kickin’ It with Kix” hosted by Kix Brooks and “NASH Nights Live” with Shawn Parr. Beginning Monday, February 10, “America’s Morning Show” will expand to a total of 20 Cumulus-owned Country format stations.

Cumulus launched the NASH entertainment brand based on the Country music lifestyle in January 2013 with the flagship NASH FM 94.7 in New York City.

“The expansion of ‘America’s Morning Show’ is just the latest preview of what’s ahead for NASH. We’re moving full-speed ahead with growing the multi-media content offering that will drive the NASH brand,” said John Dickey, Executive Vice President and co-Chief Operating Officer of Cumulus.

“America’s Morning Show” airs weekdays from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. and originates live from Nashville before a studio audience. In addition to Garner, the program is co-hosted by Country music personalities Terri Clark and Chuck Wicks and features news updates by HLN anchor Robin Meade and entertainment gossip provided by Erika Grace Powell. The show features a mix of Country hits, in-studio interviews with Country music’s biggest stars and news about the Country lifestyle.

Beginning in the spring, “America’s Morning Show” will also be available to WestwoodOne affiliates nationwide. Stations will continue to include local news, traffic and weather segments.

The following is a list of the stations and markets airing “America’s Morning Show” beginning Monday:
  • WKDF/Nashville, TN: NASH FM 103.3
  • WDRQ/Detroit, MI: NASH FM 93.1
  • WRKN/New Orleans, LA: NASH FM 92.3
  • KRMD/Shreveport, LA: NASH FM 101.1
  • WIWF/Charleston, SC: NASH FM 96.9
  • WNNF/Cincinnati, OH: NASH FM 94.1
  • WKOR/Columbus-Starkville, MS: NASH FM 94.9
  • WXTA/Erie, PA: NASH FM 97.9
  • WFBE/Flint, MI: NASH FM 95.1
  • WYZB/Fort Walton, FL: NASH FM 105.5
  • WTNR/Grand Rapids, MI: NASH FM 94.5
  • WZCY/Harrisburg, PA: NASH FM 106.7
  • WXBM/Pensacola, FL: NASH FM 102.7
  • WPSK/Blacksburg, VA: NASH FM 107.1
  • WLXX/Lexington, KY: NASH FM 92.9
  • KQFC/Boise, ID: NASH FM 97.9
  • WHKR/Melbourne, FL: NASH FM 102.7
  • WKOS/Tri-Cities, TN: NASH FM 104.9
  • WLFF/Myrtle Beach, SC: NASH FM 106.5

Philly Radio: Rick Vaughn Returns To Program WRDW

Rick Vaughn 
UPDATE 3/11/2014 10AM:  Well that didn't last long.  Rick Vaughn and Beasley have just parted company.  No explanation was givien.

Original Posting....

Program Director Rick Vaughn, who  found himself pushed out from CCM+ E/Atlanta last month, will be returning to Philadelphia to program Beasley's Top WRDW 96.5 FM Wired 96.5.

Vaughn starts February 18, reporting to VP/Market Manager Natalie Conner.

Vaughn also programmed CCM+E's WIOQ from 2006-2008 and its WKSC 103.5 FM Kiss FM in Chicago from 2008-20012.  While briefly in Atlanta, Vaughn was PD for CCM+E's Top 40 WWPW and Alternative WRDA.

Beasley VP/Programming Justin Chase stated, "We are thrilled to welcome Rick to the Beasley family! By adding Rick's track record of excellence to the top notch talent we have in Philadelphia, Wired 96.5 is poised to have a banner year."

WRDW-FM 96.5 FM (9.6kw) 54dBu Coverage
Vaughn  commented, "Wired 96.5 is an outstanding radio station with a rock-solid brand. I am honored to lead our talented, local team onto the next battleground.  Thank you, Bruce and the Beasley family, Natalie Conner and Justin Chase for this amazing opportunity to win in Philadelphia and return to the city my family calls 'home'."

Akron Radio: WNIR Weekend Talker Bob Earley Walks

Bob Earley
Bob Earley, a host on talk-radio station WNIR 100.1 FM for close to a decade, resigned Friday morning after a disagreement with management, according to

Bill Klaus, WNIR CEO and station manager, said, “We had a disagreement in the direction of [Earley’s] weekend program and he chose to resign.”

He declined to elaborate.

Earley said the disagreement began with his plan to have Jennifer Downey, president of erotic-goods chain Ambiance, on his show Sunday. Downey has often appeared in local media, and those appearances are especially common around Valentine’s Day.

According to Earley, Bob Klaus — Bill’s brother, and WNIR’s president and general sales manager — at first approved Downey going on Earley’s show, but later balked. After some back-and-forth, Bob Klaus finally said no.

As a local concert promoter and event chairman of the Rockin’ on the River concert series in Cuyahoga Falls, Earley said he also had a business connection to Ambiance as one of the sponsors of Rockin’ on the River. He was not sure if the chance of frank talk about sex was the only thing worrying the Klauses, or if the Ambiance/Rockin’ relationship was part of the problem.

WNIR 100.1 FM (4.2kw) 60dBu Coverage
Earley has been a substitute host on the station since 2005 and has hosted a Saturday and Sunday evening show since 2009. His departure continues a string of changes at the station; besides Piatt and Fuller, WNIR personalities Howie Chizek and Tom Erickson died in June and November 2012 respectively, with Chizek succeeded by Denning and Erickson by Jim Isabella.

Read More Now

Saturday Aircheck: WMCA's Ed Baer Summer 1964.

Ed Baer

Ed Baer (The Big Bad Bear) plays the hits on "Goodguy Radio" - WMCA 570 AM  in New York City. Ed's filling-in for B. Mitchel Reed this warm 1964 summer evening (note: the title slate in the video is incorrect. The year was 1964, not 1954).  Ed tells us that BMR will be visiting with two of the Beatles and that radio fans can greet him on his return - complete with JFK flight #. DJ's were as big as the stars they played - especially at WMCA.

Music trivia - Ed plays the top-voted hits of the night including two by the Beatles plus, the Dave Clark Five, The Tokens, Johnny Rivers and others. Diet cola's were new and exciting and there's a catchy commercial here for Coca-Cola's "Tab" soda. About 30 minutes of uncut fun - from 1964 and WMCA.

February 8 In Radio History

In 1922...President Warren G. Harding had a radio installed in the White House.

In 1924...the first coast-to-coast radio hookup took place for a speech by General John Joseph Carty from Chicago.

In 1929...KOY-AM, Phoenix, Arizona, began broadcasting. KOY was the first radio station in the state of Arizona, signing on in 1921 as Amateur Radio station 6BBH on 360 meters (833 kHz). Earl Neilsen was the holder of the 6BBH callsign (there were no country prefixes for hams prior to 1928). At that time, broadcasting by ham radio operators was legal.

In 1922, the station received its broadcast license, under the Neilsen Radio & Sporting Goods Company business name, with the callsign KFCB. While the KFCB call letters were sequentially assigned, the station adopted the slogan "Kind Friends Come Back" to match the callsign.

A Phoenix teenager and radio enthusiast named Barry Goldwater was one of the new station's first employees.

When the AM broadcast band was opened in 1923 by the Department of Commerce, KFCB moved around the dial, as did many stations at the time. It was on 1260, 1230, 1310, and 1390 before moving to its long-time home of 550 kHz in 1941. KFCB became KOY on February 8, 1929.  Today the station is owned by Clear Channel airing a business news format.

In 1960...The U.S. House of Representatives Special Subcommittee on Legislative Oversight opened hearings on disc jockey "payola" amid allegations of money and gifts illegally being given to secure airplay or TV appearances.

In 1978...U.S. Senate deliberations on the Panama Canal Treaties were aired on radio - making it the first time such deliberations had been broadcast over that medium.

In 1996...the "Telecommunications Act of 1996" deregulated Radio ownership.

In 2000...WGN-Chicago morning radio personality and private pilot Bob Collins was killed in a mid-air collision at age 57. His airplane and that of a student pilot collided upon approach to the runway at the airport in Waukegan, Illinois. The student pilot, Sharon Hock, was directly below him and they were unaware of each others' presence until the collision. Collins attempted to steer his plane to a safe landing, but it crashed and burned atop a nearby hospital, killing him and a passenger. Hock crashed three blocks away and also died.

Friday, February 7, 2014

Flashback: Radio Goliath Scott Shannon's Amazing Career

Scott Shannon
Scott Shannon grew up an Army brat in Indianapolis, Indiana. He began his radio career during his own Army stint at WFBS 1450 AM in Spring Lake, North Carolina (now WFBX). From there he moved to WCLS 1580 AM in Columbus, Georgia.

Shannon worked full-time in radio at WABB in Mobile, Alabama, where he acquired the name Super Shan.

After a brief stint at WMPS in Memphis he moved to Nashville, where he was the evening disc jockey at WMAK-1300 AM, later becoming that station's program director. Under Shannon's direction, WMAK became the market's top-rated station.

Shannon departed WRBQ-FM Q105 in Tampa in 1983 for New York City.

Shannon is perhaps most famous for his work on Z100 in New York City in the mid to late 80's. Along with former disc jockey Ross Brittain of WABC's popular "Ross & Wilson Show", he founded the "Z Morning Zoo." He was the driving force in helping Z100 become the top-rated FM station in New York City within a mere 74 days of signing on the air. During this period, Shannon also served as one of the original VJs on VH1.

In 1989, Shannon left Z100 in what was an emotional farewell to head to Los Angeles to start up Pirate Radio, KQLZ.

Pirate Radio employed a similar Top 40 concept. As the 1990s began, Top 40 radio experienced a decline, and eventually Pirate Radio struggled as well, leading to Shannon's departure. He was sometimes referred to as "El Diablo" in Los Angeles because of a billboard image that made him resemble the Devil.

In 1991 he returned to New York and resurfaced on Z100's biggest rival, WPLJ. This station had also been struggling since its glory days of the mid 1980s, and Shannon became program director and morning drive co-host.

Shannon created a Top 40 format that was geared more toward the adult contemporary audience, brought in co-host Todd Pettengill to form "The Big Show," and the WPLJ call letters were re-emphasized. The "new" WPLJ has not generally equalled the ratings of Z100, but it has found a niche in the New York radio market.

In addition to his New York morning show, Scott can be heard across the country on The True Oldies Channel radio network. He also records intros and bumpers for talk radio's "The Sean Hannity Show."
  • Scott is one of several disc jockeys honored in an exhibit at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
  • In 2000, FMBQ, a radio trade magazine, named Shannon "Program Director of the Century."
  • In 2003, he was inducted into the National Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame in Washington, D.C., and in 2006 he was inducted into the National Radio Hall of Fame in Chicago, Illinois.
  • Scott was also a successful radio consultant in the 1990s for WPLY Philadelphia and WKCI-FM New Haven.
  • In September 2010, Scott was named Network/Syndicated Personality of the Year at the 2010 National Association of Broadcasters' Marconi Radio Awards.

NYC Radio: Scott Shannon Retires From WPLJ

Scott Shannon
UPDATE SATURDAY 2/8 6AM:  It appears our original headline may be more accurate than we knew.  Scott Shannon has indeed retired from WPLJ, but not necessarily from radio. Well-connected radio writer David Hinckley reports in the NY Daily News that while Shannon has not announced future plans...he is "not retiring'.  Rather, Shannon insists he just looking for a change. Stay Tuned...

Original Posting....

After many successful years together with Todd Pettengill hosting "Scott & Todd in the Morning" on WPLJ 95.5 FM, Scott Shannon announced on the air this morning that he is retiring from WPLJ after 22 years at the station.

Shannon is 66-years-old.

Pettengill will continue as the host of "The Todd Show" during the same 6am-10am drivetime slot. "Scott & Todd in the Morning" has been New York City's longest continuous running radio show.

“Of course I’ll miss being a part of the morning show here on PLJ and I might even pop back in from time to time and try to get Todd to play a Rascals song or two,” Shannon said.

"Scott and I had an amazing run and I'll miss our mornings together and cherish the memories we made. I'm also very excited about the opportunity ahead with a very talented group of people that I know our listeners are going to love," Pettengill said.

"Scott's contributions to the industry and the station are incalculable and we thank him for his many years of amazing service and dedication to his many morning listeners," said John Dickey, Executive Vice President and co-Chief Operation Officer of Cumulus.

Longtime Executive Producer Joseph "Monk" Pardavila and news anchor Cooper Lawrence will continue on "The Todd Show" in their current roles.

WPLJ 95.5 FM (6.7kw) 54dBu Coverage

Cincy Radio: Cumulus Rebranding WNNF As NashFM

Cumulus announces the rebranding launch today of WNNF NASH FM 94.1 in Cincinnati. NASH FM 94.1 joins the growing list of what will eventually be more than 60 owned-and-operated Cumulus Country stations operating under the NASH brand.

The change is effective as of 5Pm Friday.

LISTEN-LINE: Click Here.

The station had been branded as 94.1 Great Country - The 90s To Now.

“We are thrilled to introduce NASH programming content to Cincinnati’s large and very active Country music listening audience. NASH FM 94.1 will bring the superstars of country to listeners in authentic, entertaining and informative ways never done before,” said Dave Crowl, Cumulus Regional Vice President and Market Manager.

Cumulus launched the NASH entertainment brand based on the Country music lifestyle in January 2013 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.

Stations "Powered by NASH" feature exclusive programming content including “Kickin’ It with Kix” hosted by Kix Brooks, “NASH Nights Live” with Shawn Parr and “American Country Countdown.”

WNNF 94.1 FM (16kw) 54dBu Coverage

Detroit Radio: Personality Mark Pasman OUT At WCSX

Mark Pasman
Detroit loses another veteran radio personality, as Mark Pasman, longtime host of WCSX 94.7 FM’s “Motor City Blues Project” was fired last week by the station, according to The Detroit News.

Pasman says he was informed of the move in a “three-minute” phone call. He asked to do one last show in order to thank musicians and listeners, but was turned down.

“After a quarter century of being a model employee, it’s kind of crazy,” Pasman says. “Asking to say goodbye was not only appropriate, it would have been an amazing show! B.B. King would be calling in, I’d have the Howlin’ Diablos in the studio. I’m disappointed I didn’t get to thank all these people. I’ve just been sitting here in tears over all the love I’ve been getting over the last few days.”

Greater Media, owner of Classic Rock WCSX, issued a statement via spokesperson Heidi Raphael in response to the Pasman firing: “The station decided to go in a different direction on the weekends. We are very grateful for the contributions Mark Pasman has made over the years to WCSX-FM.”

Greater Media also reports that Pasman’s 7 p.m.-midnight Sunday night shift will be picked up by Pam Rossi, who also hosts the “Over Easy” show on WCSX Sunday mornings. The Sunday night Rossi show will not be a blues program.

Pasman held many jobs over the decades at Greater Media’s WRIF and WCSX, including morning show producer and program director.

Read More Now

Ed Sullivan's Talent Coordinator Recalls The Beatles

"The Night That Changed America: A GRAMMY Salute To The Beatles" air Sunday evening at 8p on CBS TV, exactly 50-years to the day, date and time of their groundbreaking first appearance.

The two hour primetime entertainment special will celebrate the remarkable legacy of the seven-time GRAMMY-winning group and their first appearance on "The Ed Sullivan Show."

Vince Calandra, who was talent coordinator for The Ed Sullivan Show, talks about one of the show's historical highlights, the first American television appearance of The Beatles.

Vince Calandra
The Beatles arrived at the studio on Saturday for rehearsal the day before their big American debut on Feb. 9, but George Harrison was laid up at the Plaza Hotel with strep throat.

According to a story at the NY Post, The band’s road manager, Neil Aspinall, was standing in for rehearsal. Before it got started, manager Brian Epstein rushed over to send him back to the hotel to deal with crises. Harrison’s sister, Louise, who’d been taking care of him, couldn’t get past security back into the hotel (“You and about 1,000 other women have come here and told us they’re George Harrison’s sister,” Calandra recalls them saying); plus, the band was in danger of being booted out of the Plaza due the mob scene of teenagers forming outside.

Calandra, in matching dark suit and tie, was the next closest thing to a Beatle nearby. It wasn’t his normal duds, but he had dressed up for theater plans that night. They put a moptop wig on his head, gave him Harrison’s guitar and told him to stand near Paul McCartney.

Read More About The Beatles and NYC Radio: Click Here.

Jay Leno Bids Farewell To The Tonight Show

Jay Leno
Jay Leno has said goodbye to "The Tonight Show" before, but not like this. According to CBS, the comedian became tearful and choked up Thursday as he concluded what he called the "greatest 22 years of my life."

"I am the luckiest guy in the world. This is tricky," said an emotional Leno, stepping down for the second and presumably last time as host of TV's venerable late-night program.

Jimmy Fallon takes over "Tonight" in New York on Feb. 17.

Leno shared that he'd lost his mother the first year he became "Tonight" host, his dad the second and then his brother.

"And after that I was pretty much out of family. And the folks here became my family," he said of the crew and staff of "Tonight."


It was a tender finish to a farewell show that was mostly aiming for laughs, with traditional monologue jokes, clips from old shows and a wild assortment of celebrities helping to usher Leno out the door.

Read More Now

LA Radio: KKGO Names Larry Morgan As New Morning Host

Larry Morgan
Radio vet Larry Morgan will be the new morning personality at Country KKGO 105.1 FM.

He will start on Monday, February 17.

Larry's resume includes doing mornings at KSWD 100.3 FM, The Sounds/Los Angeles, KHMX/Houston and he was also the Sr. Vice President of "Top 40 With Ryan Seacrest."

"I couldn't be more excited to be part of the Go Country105 Team," Morgan told  "Everyone at Go Country 105 has created such a great environment. It feels like family there. And the chance to once again wake up Southern California is going to be fun. The opportunity to play a TON of great Country music is a gig I could not pass up."

KKGO 105.1 FM (18kw) 54dBu Coverage

Miami Radio: James Crystal Files For Bankruptcy

Last week came news of payroll not being met for 75+ employees, now it's reported that several companies owned by radio businessman James Hilliard of Palm Beach County have filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

According to, James Crystal South Florida and James Crystal Inc. filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization.

Crystal owns news talk WFTL 850 AM  and sports talk WMEN 640 AM, home of Sid Rosenberg and Orlando Alzugaray.

Both companies list liabilities between $10 million and $50 million.

Pittsburgh Radio: CC Names Tim Benz Cluster Sports Director

Tim Benz
WXDX 105.9 FM morning host Tim Benz has been promoted to sports director of Clear Channel Media and Entertainment's Pittsburgh stations.

According to, Benz will oversee sports programming on all six stations (WDVE-FM, WXDX-FM, WKST-FM, WWSW-FM, WPGB-FM and WBGG-AM). He'll do segments about the biggest sports stories of the day on each of the stations and will host a daily show on sports/talk 970 ESPN/WBGG at 2 p.m. weekdays.

Benz has been morning host at the X since 2006. He'll be replaced in morning drive by WXDX evening host Abby Krizner.

WXDX morning show co-host Bob McLaughlin moves to the job of executive producer for Mark Madden's sports talk show, which airs from 3 to 6 p.m. weekdays on WXDX.

Fox Cable Net Revs Spike 14%, Broadcast Up 6%

Cable networks had strong advertising sales growth at 21st-Century Fox in the fourth quarter of 2013 -- with its broadcasting TV ad revenue only up slightly, according to Media Daily News.

Domestic advertising was up 7% for Fox’s cable networks, in part driven by double-digit percentage gains at FX Networks and its national and regional sports networks, as a result of viewership increases at Fox’s new FXX and Fox Sports 1 network.

Broadcasting advertising revenue registered a small uptick. All this was pulled back by lower political advertising spending at Fox’s TV stations and general lower entertainment ratings at the Fox Television Network, specifically from lower ratings at “X Factor.”

On the plus side, the higher levels were largely due to National Football League and Major League Baseball programming ratings gains.

Revenue from cable network programming grew 14% to $2.97 billion -- this includes a 15% higher boost in domestic affiliate revenue. Broadcasting revenue was 6% higher to $1.63 billion -- including a 6% gain in retransmission revenue. Operating profit continued to grow with its cable networks, up 2%, while broadcasting operating profit dipped 11% to $218 million.

Read More Now

Norm Pattiz On The Power of Celeb Podcasts

Westwood One Founder Norm Pattiz discusses making podcasts more ad-friendly and the future of digital audio advertising with Adam Johnson on Bloomberg Television’s “Street Smart.” (Via: Bloomberg)

PA Radio: Personality Fired Because of Estranged Husband

Former WRKW 99.1 FM Rocky 99 and WFGI 95.5 FM Froggy 95 radio personality Nancy Lane was fired, she says because of her estranged husband, according to

“It has been a traumatic week,” said Lane.

Lane, known to the public as “Daisy or Lexi”, was on two radio stations owned by Forever Broadcasting. On Tuesday she says she was terminated because of things her soon to be ex- husband George Lane did.

WFGI 95.5 FM (57kw) 54dBU Coverage
“The papers clearly state because of my estranged husband,” said Lane.

Nancy left George Lane last summer after he allegedly burnt the couples Portage home down.  Since then he has been supposedly terrorizing her, sending threats to her and her station.  He even allegedly hired someone to slash the tires of employees and company cars.  Lane said she endured years of abuse.

“I never understood what women who are abused go through until I went through it,” said Lane.  “You wonder every day of your life what’s next?  Yes, I am going through the worse time of my entire life,” said Lane.  “But if this story can help make another employer understand what it’s like for someone in an abusive situation – and not fire them because over it, then it’s worth it.”

WTAJ contacted Forever Broadcasting for a statement but never returned any messages.

Tampa Radio: Daughter Of Personality Found Murdered

Many Tampa listeners know Dave ‘Flash’ Morgan as the host of the Saturday Night Dance Party on WRBQ 104.7 FM, Q105.  But according to CBS Radio/Tampa Bay, his co-workers know him as a dear friend.

Eric Salabirra, Shelsea Sizemore
In what can only be described as horrible tragedy,  Morgan has lost his daughter.

According to, the bodies of Morgan's daughter Chelsea Lynn Sizemore and her boyfriend were found Wednesday night.  Sizemore's 2-year-old daughter was not harmed.

Police believe the boyfriend, Eric Albert Salabirria, might have known something bad was about to happen.

The 28-year-old apparently text-messaged a neighbor to come to his home in north Tampa late Wednesday; that neighbor arrived to find the bodies of the the couple.

A homicide investigation is under way. Tampa police released few details of the crime, saying only that both victims had “upper body trauma.”

The department said there were no signs of forced entry into the home, and today detectives said this does not appear to be a random act of violence and that the suspect and victims likely knew each other.

Police tape hung from a breezeway of the home this afternoon, but the neighborhood of single-family homes just blocks from Busch Gardens was quiet.

Neither Salabirria nor Sizemore had criminal records in Florida.

Read More Now.

MA Radio: Longtime Host Larry Kratka Signing-Off

Larry Kratka
Today is Larry Kratka's last day as news director at Gamma Broadcasting, which owns six of the eight commercial radio signals in Pittsfield, MA

"It’s a life-changing event," he told the, "but a radio guy never really hangs up the microphone."

He won’t need to wake up at 3 a.m. anymore to begin his early shift at WBEC 1420 AM and WUPE 1110 AM / 100.1 FM, where until last August he was the voice of local news. Since then, he has been writing the newscasts for the Pittsfield stations, as well as for WNAW in North Adams and WSBS in Great Barrington.

Kratka said it was his decision to step away after nearly 30 years on the air in the Berkshires. "It’s been a quite a run," he acknowledged.

"I turned 66 in August and I said, maybe it’s time, because there’s been a lot of pressure since Tommy [Tom Conklin] left," he said. His original retirement date last summer was pushed back repeatedly.

In an ironic twist, Conklin, the newsman who was let go in November 2012 in a downsizing, has been rehired to succeed Kratka.

"I love it," Kratka said. "You can’t find a better guy to do it. I used to say to him, someday this can all be yours. Little did we know."

Read More Now 

R.I.P.: MLB HOFer, Broadcaster Ralph Kiner

Ralph Kiner
Baseball Hall of Famer Ralph Kiner, who was one of the game's most beloved broadcasters, died yesterday at his California home.

He was 91.

Kiner's 10-year playing career began in 1946 with the Pittsburgh Pirates, and for his first seven seasons, he won or tied for the National League lead in home runs each year, ending with a career total of 369. His playing career including stints with the Pirates, Chicago Cubs and Cleveland Indians, and after it was over, Kiner became a New York Mets announcer in their first season in 1962.

He stayed with the team to call games for a total of 52 years, even doing a handful of them last season, and famously had his "Kiner's Korner," where he'd talk to players after the game. Kiner was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1975, in his final year or eligibility, with just one vote to spare.

Baseball Hall of Famer Ralph Kiner in one of his last in depth interviews talks about his career on the field, particularly, and making the transition to the broadcast booth with the expansion Mets.

February 7 In Radio History

In 1915...First train-to-station radio message, Binghamton, NY

In 1963...B. Mitchell Reed starts at WMCA

March 15, 1963
In 1963…The Vee-Jay label released the first Beatles single in the U.S., "Please Please Me" b/w "Ask Me Why." The first pressings became valuable collectors' items because their name on the label was misspelled "Beattles." Dick Biondi, a disc jockey at WLS in Chicago at the time and a friend of Vee-Jay executive Ewart Abner, played the song on the radio perhaps as early as February 8, 1963, thereby becoming the first disc jockey in the United States to play a Beatles record on the radio. "Please Please Me" peaked at #35 after four weeks on the WLS music survey, but did not show up on any of the major national American record charts. The label re-issued the single in January 1964 to a much better result: it peaked at #3 on the Billboard Hot 100, trailing only the group's "I Want to Hold Your Hand" and "She Loves You."

In 1964...Just after 1:00 p.m. EST, Pan Am Yankee Clipper flight 101 landed at New York City's JFK Airport. An estimated 5,000 screaming fans were waiting to greet the Beatles as they arrived for their first U.S. tour and an appearance on CBS-TV's "The Ed Sullivan Show."

In the United Kingdom, the Beatles had experienced popularity since the start of 1963. But in the US, Capitol Records, owned by the band's record company EMI, had for most of the year declined to issue any of the singles.

The phenomenon of Beatlemania in the UK was regarded with amusement by the US press, once it made any comment. When newspaper and magazine articles did begin to appear towards the end of 1963, they cited the English stereotype of eccentricity, reporting that the UK had developed an interest in something that had come and gone a long time ago in the US: rock and roll.

In late 1963, Capitol Records agreed to release the single "I Want to Hold Your Hand" with a large accompanying promotional campaign, due to Ed Sullivan's agreement to headline the Beatles on The Ed Sullivan Show.

The Beatles American television debut was on 18 November 1963 on The Huntley-Brinkley Report, with a four-minute long piece by Edwin Newman.

On 22 November 1963, the CBS Morning News ran a five-minute feature on Beatlemania in the UK. The evening's scheduled repeat was cancelled following the assassination of John F. Kennedy the same day. On December 10, Walter Cronkite decided to televise the piece again on the CBS Evening News,[10] and the resulting interest led to the rush-release of "I Want to Hold Your Hand" and—only weeks before The Beatles' arrival—a US commercial breakthrough.

Eleven weeks before the Beatles' arrival in the U.S. President John F. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas, Texas. The nation was in mourning, in fear, and in disbelief. The assassination came after a fifteen-year build-up of Cold War tension. The motivation and identity of the assassin, would be doubted by many Americans for decades even after the Warren Commission issued its report in September 1964. As the U.S. tried to restore a sense of normality, teenagers in particular struggled to cope, as their disbelief began to be replaced by a personal reaction to what had happened: in school essays, teenagers wrote that "then it became real", and "I was feeling the whole world is going to collapse on me", and "I never felt so empty in all my life".

When the Beatles first hit American shores in 1964, radio personalities scrambled to befriend them and scoop other stations.   Media writer Peter Kanze recapped the radio battle for The Beatles in 1989 and it was reprinted recently at

According to Kanze, Rick Sklar was WABC’s Program Director from 1962 through 1976, and he remembered that “WABC never deviated from its standard policy with and artist, including the Beatles.   In order to get played on the station, the artist had to be established first.  Once they made it, fine, but we weren't going be the station to take a chance.  “WABeatlesC” went on the first American Beatles releases, but only because of their track record in England.  I don’t think that it was very significant that WMCA played “I Wanna Hold Your Hand” before we did.  As far as we were concerned, the Beatles weren't known yet.  Once the Beatles were known, though, we always tried to have the exclusive. “

(Courtesy of the WABC Tribute Website  Find out more, visit the Beatles Page: Click Here.)

The “exclusive” or “scoop” (a record that has been obtained first by one radio station in a given area and no other) was all-important in those days, and still is to some extent with superstar performers.  In the case of the Beatles, it was meant to convey the impression that one radio station had a closer relationship to the group than the other.  Hence, newer music, better gossip, etc.

As recounted at, WABC had a huge advantage when The Beatles visited New York City. As the flagship station for the ABC radio network, it had access to lots of high tech equipment. This included wireless RF microphones. During The Beatles first 1964 visit to New York, when they stayed at The Plaza, it was impossible for virtually any of the media to get access to them.

So, during their second 1964 visit when they stayed at the Delmonico Hotel, WABC mounted an all out offensive. The suite above The Beatles was rented by WABC and was used to set up a remote studio. Using those wireless microphones, WABC disc jockeys Scott Muni and Bruce Morrow wandered around the hotel ready to broadcast anything that might have to do with The Beatles. It gave the station a huge edge. And, it didn’t hurt that as many security and hotel staff people as possible were presented with "gifts" from WABC. Needless to say, there were very few places where the WABC people could not roam.

By now most of the 10,000 teenagers who packed the streets outside of the hotel were listening to WABC on their transistor radios. When WABC disc jockeys Scott Muni and Bruce Morrow asked them to sing WABC jingles as they were playing on WABC, the entire crowd was able to do so in unison.


The power of all of this was best illustrated when Ringo Starr lost his gold Saint Christopher’s medal which was attached to a chain around his neck. Apparently as he was entering the hotel, an over zealous fan inadvertently snatched it.   Bruce Morrow and Scott Muni learned this while interviewing him over the air at the hotel. WABC listeners also heard this and so did the girl who had the medal, Angie McGowan. She had her mother call Cousin Brucie that night. But, program director Rick Sklar, ever the master promoter, could see the advantages of stretching out this drama a while longer. Even though WABC recovered the medal within a few hours, Rick arranged for the girl to stay overnight, safely secluded with her mother in a hotel room while the station continued to broadcast appeals for the medal's safe recovery. As you would expect, this became a media sensation and WABC held all the cards. By the time the following evening rolled around, everyone was listening to WABC to see if the medal would ever be recovered. Twenty-four hours after its initial loss and subsequent recovery, WABC reunited the medal with Ringo over the air. It was a publicity bonanza for the station.

In 1976...the Federal Communications Commission raided and closed down pirate radio station WCPR, operating out of Brooklyn, New York.

In 2000...Robin Scott died at the age of 79. Scott was responsible for launching England's BBC Radio 1 in 1967.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Nielsen Reports The Radio Is Always On

Nielsen calls radio the original mass medium and a new report indicates reaches more than 242-million listen to radio each week.  That's 90 percent of everyone in the U.S. on a weekly basis. This enormous reach stretches across demographics, ethnicities and geographies as listeners engage every day with stations in their local markets on matters important to them.

Audio is available on multiple platforms, in real time, wherever consumers want to listen on more than 16,000 stations across the country covering 50 different formats. Radio is also a hyper-local medium serving every unique community from one coast to the other.

Audio consumers are listening for more than 2.5 hours every day, and one of radio’s best-kept secrets is its ability to reach a highly qualified audience right before they arrive to shop. And audio consumers have money to spend because more than two-thirds of the weekly audience works full-time, tuning in during the working day, away from home.

Nation's Top Formats In 2013:
  • Country  14.8
  • News/Talk 11.3
  • Top 40 8.0
  • AC 7.3
  • Classic Hits 5.5
  • Classic Rock 5.2
  • Hot AC 4.8
  • Urban AC 4.0
  • Top 40/R 3.3
  • Sports 3.1
  • Urban Contemporary 3.1
  • Contemporary Christian 3.1
  • Mexican Regional 2.8
  • Adults Hits/+80S Hits 2.1
  • Active Rock 1.9
  • Alternative 1.9
  • All News 1.5
  • Classical 1.4
  • Oldies 1.4
  • Spanish Contemporary 1.4

Employment Status Determines Radio TSL

92 percent of the people in the U.S. over the age of 12 (242 million people) listen to the radio each week. But what you may not be conscious of is where and when you’re most likely to tune in to hear your favorite music, news, talk or sports programming…because it depends on your employment status.

According to Nielsen’s new Audio Today report, a large majority of nationwide radio listening happens outside the home by the full-time working crowd. Now, it should come as no surprise that those two factors are directly related; employed consumers are the most likely to leave the home on a regular basis during the weekday. And when they’re away from home, they’re more likely to use radio than during other times during the day.

Over the course of a seven-day week, 64 percent of all radio listening happens away from home, and 62 percent of the audience between the ages of 18-64 works full time. Both numbers jump even higher if you focus on the Monday to Friday work week, particularly during commuting hours (known as AM Drive and PM Drive in the radio world).

And younger generation listeners aren't tuning in as much as their elders:

While nine out of 10 millennials still listen to at least five minutes of traditional radio a week, young adults are splitting their time with other audio options such as streaming services (including Spotify, Rdio and now Beats Music) and their personal music collections

For millennials and Gen X-ers, country music radio was the most popular format. The boomers had the highest radio engagement of any demo, but leaned toward news and talk as their genre of choice.

Country was the the most popular format in general, with a 14.8% share of all radio listening. News and talk came in second with 11.3%, followed by pop contemporary hits with 8%.

Clear Channel, Horizon Media Form Partnership

Clear Channel and Horizon Media, the fastest growing privately-owned media services agency in the world, announced today a pioneering $100 million, multi-year cross-platform partnership providing Horizon and its clients with exclusive access to select integrated, first-to-market opportunities across Clear Channel’s industry leading business and platforms.

This first-of-its-kind alliance will enable the companies to leverage Clear Channel’s assets – including out of home, broadcast, mobile, digital and events – to benefit Horizon’s clients, proving the effectiveness and ROI of broadcast and out of home through deep integrated marketing partnerships.

The alliance provides Horizon Media with exclusive rights across key events and promotions, including select Artist Integration Programs, World Premieres, customized shows at Clear Channel’s iconic iHeartRadio Theaters in New York and Los Angeles, as well as special events created just for Horizon clients.  In addition, the agency will have access to the full array of creative talent at Clear Channel Media and Entertainment for special content creation opportunities.

The partnership will also allow for the co-creation of new psychographic targeting systems utilizing Horizon’s proprietary tools and insights fused with unique music and consumer research built on Clear Channel Media’s industry-leading national reach. The valuable research insights developed throughout the partnership will fuel further media mix model development.

K-C Radio: Alice Doesn't Live At 102.1 FM Anymore

KCKC 102.1 FM Alice 102 morphed into KC 102.1 on Wednesday afternoon, with an adult contemporary playlist reminiscent of how the station sounded when it was Star 102, according to

The station said the new format will have hits from the 1980s forward, including such artists as Maroon 5, Matchbox Twenty, Voodoo Dolls, Katy Perry, Madonna, Billy Joel, Sheryl Crow and Adele.

The first five songs played on KC 102.1: Pink’s “Get the Party Started,” Journey’s “Don’t Stop Believin’,” Justin Timberlake’s “Mirrors,” Cyndi Lauper’s “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” and Bruno Mars’ “Just the Way You Are.”

Promotions director Nikki Vivas said KC 102.1 is “going to be a really upbeat, exciting, very fun station. We see the demand for it.”

KCKC 102.1 FM (100Kw) 60dBu Coverage
KCKC had been Alice 102 since January 2011, when it “flipped” from Star 102, an adult contemporary format that had just spent two months playing Christmas music.

In a statement, Wilks Broadcasting owner and CEO Jeff Wilks said: “KC 102.1 is familiar music that is upbeat and delivers a format that Kansas Citians have been asking for. Since the departure of two adult contemporary stations back in 2011” — that would be Star 102 and KUDL, 98.1 FM — “Kansas City has had a hole for this format, and we are excited to relaunch this brand.”

Wilks also owns hits station KMXV Mix 93.3 and country stations KFKF 94.1 AND KBEQ Q-104.

D/FW Radio: Jay Shannon To Program KDGE, KDMX

Jay Shannon
CCM+E/Dallas has announced that Jay Shannon has been named Program Director for KDGE-FM and KDMX-FM.

The move is effective March 15, 2014.

Shannon will oversee all programming operations for KDGE-FM and KDMX-FM, and will report to Patrick Davis, Vice President of Operations for CCM+E Dallas.
Shannon is relocating from CCM+E Austin, where he has programmed multiple formats for more than 11 years. He most recently served as VP of Operations for the Austin cluster.

 “I’m thrilled for the opportunity to work in an amazing market and be a part of such strong brands like KDGE and KDMX,” said Shannon. “Thank you Clay Hunnicutt, Patrick Davis, Deidre Richter and Kelly Kibler for this incredible opportunity!  I would also thank Pam McKay for her support and partnership these past seven years.”

“Jay has been very successful throughout his time in Austin, and has a knack for developing talent (Editor's note: he's worked with Bobby Bones among others),” said Davis. “He has an outstanding track record and I could not be more pleased to have him join the Dallas team.”

Fargo Radio: Mike Kapel To Program WDAY 970 AM

Mike Kapel
Mike Kapel has been named the new program director for WDAY 970 AM, according to

Kapel has worked in the Fargo-Moorhead radio market for 20 years and will take over the daily operations of the Fargo AM radio station.

Kapel has spent most of his career as a morning- show host at area music stations. He has also held a variety of programming and operations management positions, most recently for Triad Broadcasting.

Kapel also hosts a daily radio show from 9 to 11 a.m. on WDAY.

“I am excited to lead the charge into a new era,” Kapel said. “As someone who grew up here and as somebody who understands the importance of WDAY to the community, it’s an exciting place to be.”

970 WDAY is owned by Forum Communications Co., a multimedia information company based in Fargo, that owns dozens of newspapers, websites, television and radio stations and commercial printing plants in North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota and Wisconsin.

Nashville Radio: Someone Wants Bobby Bones To Go Away

Bobby Bones has had quite a week already and now he finds out someone in Nashville really wants him to “go away,” accoridng to

Last week, Bobby Bones announced via Twitter that he might be leaving radio to pursue another job offer. Just a day later, the host of The Bobby Bones Show returned to Twitter to let fans know he was staying put after all.

And now Bobby Bones’ Twitter lit up with discussion over billboards going up in Nashville that say, “Go away Bobby Bones.”

The morning show host sent his trusty sidekick Lunchbox out to the scene to investigate a caller’s claims that the billboards were showing up alongside Highway 24 in Nashville. Sure enough, Lunchbox reported from the scene that the billboards were real.

Read More Now

CBS Makes Successful Bid For Thursday Night Football

The smash hit “Big Bang Theory” will be shoved out of its Thursday night time slot this fall after CBS won the right to broadcast eight NFL games on that night, according to The NY Post.

It is the first time Thursday night NFL games will regularly appear on a broadcast network.

CBS snapped up the hotly contested eight-game package for between $250 million and $300 million, according to sources close to talks.

Fox, Disney’s ABC and ESPN, NBCUniversal and Turner also bid.

CBS didn’t say where Sheldon Cooper, a lead character in “BBT,” and the rest of the sitcom lineup that night would end up — back to Monday nights or moved to a November season premiere — but it is clear why CBS and its rivals vied so hard for the pigskin programming: ratings.

Jim Nantz, Phil Simmns
And dollars.

While “BBT” attracted $316,912 for a 30-second spot, according to Ad Age, NBC’s Sunday Night Football got 85 percent higher rates, at $593,700, and ESPN’s Monday Night Football charged $325,400.

NFL games attract larger TV audiences than any other regular programming. They also deliver the coveted young male demographic.

Thursday night NFL games had been available only on the NFL Network.

With those ratings not as robust as Goodell would have liked, the league decided to sell half the weeknight slate to a broadcast network — to increase NFL revenues and hopefully tease more viewers to the NFL Network’s late season slate of games.

Read More Now.

SiriusXM Drops Jocks From Two Music Channels

Pat St. John
UPDATE Monday 2/10/2014: Personality Pat. St. John has re-surfaced on SiriusXM.  St. John is hosting 1p to 7p (Eastern) on the 60sOn 6 Channel.  Smart Move!  He can also be heard midday Sundays on WCBS 101.1 FM in NYC and online.

Earlier Posting....

SiriusXM satellite radio has taken the disc jockeys off two more music channels, 50s on 5 and 90s on 9.

According to David Hinckley at the NY Daily News, this erases several jocks that New York listeners know, including WAXQ 104.3 FM morning man Jim Kerr, Pat St. John (continues to be heard midday Sundays on WCBS 101.1 FM) and Norm N. Nite, all of whom hosted shows on the ’50s channel.

SiriusXM saves a few bucks in salaries here. The main goal, presumably, is making those channels music-intensive — a trend that has permeated all of music radio over the last 10 years.

The thinking is that listeners want music, not voices.

Hinckley writes, a good jock is as much a part of radio as the music itself. They’re part of the package, part of the deal listeners always had with the radio.

The disappearance of more jocks at SiriusXM also feels disheartening because it takes satellite radio another small step away from what make it so distinctive in the beginning.

XM, in particular, positioned itself as an alternative to terrestrial radio. It played a wide range of music you’d never hear on commercial stations, and it hired jocks like Matt the Cat, a young guy with an old-time personality.

When XM and Sirius merged, a lot of that got squeezed out. Playlists tightened, hosts vanished, older and less well-known music was replaced by newer and more popular. It felt as if someone had hired a top-40 consultant and was holding focus groups.

Read More Now