Saturday, August 29, 2015

August 30 Radio History

In 1903...Arthur Godfrey was born. Godfrey is probably best known for his "Arthur Godfrey's Talent Scout" and was one of if not the most popular radio personalities of his day.

Arthur Godfrey
On leaving the Coast Guard, Godfrey became a radio announcer for the Baltimore station WFBR (now WJZ (AM)) and moved the short distance to Washington, D.C. to become a staff announcer for NBC-owned station WRC the same year and remained there until 1934.

Recovering from a near-fatal automobile accident en route to a flying lesson in 1931 (by which time he was already an avid flyer), he decided to listen closely to the radio and realized that the stiff, formal style then used by announcers could not connect with the average radio listener; the announcers spoke in stentorian tones, as if giving a formal speech to a crowd and not communicating on a personal level. Godfrey vowed that when he returned to the airwaves, he would affect a relaxed, informal style as if he were talking to just one person. He also used that style to do his own commercials and became a regional star.

In 1934...KEX 1180 AM moved studios from the "Terminal Sales Building" to "The Oregonian" bldg. with KGW

In 1959...Brill Building songwriter Carole King, already two months pregnant, marries her writing partner Gerry Goffin in New York City. The marriage lasts nine years.

In 1966...WOR 98.7 FM changed to rock.

It was nation’s first  free-form progressive rock format. Some legendary NYC disc jockeys, including Scott Muni and Murray “The K” Kaufman, were among the original WOR-FM staffers.

WOR-FM became popular on college campuses and the station racked up impressive ratings for an FM station in those days.

But owner RKO wanted to play just the hits.  It tweaked the format in 1967 to target a traditional Top 40 audience.  Consultant Bill Drake brought a version of his “Boss Radio” format, which had been popular on other RKO stations around the nation, to WOR-FM.  New York City’s version of the format was more oldies- and adult-oriented.

In 1968...The Beatles' "Hey Jude" was released

In 1968...Wheels of Fire by Cream continued to set the pace on the album chart.  Time Peace/The Rascals' Greatest Hits was #2 and the Doors' release Waiting for the Sun was at position #3.  Aretha Now by Aretha Franklin was #4 with Johnny Rivers moving up to 5 with Realization.  Herb Alpert & the Tijuana Brass had an entry in the Top 10 (which they did nearly ever week of the 60's)--The Beat of the Brass.  The rest of the Top 10:  Bookends, the great album from Simon & Garfunkel was #7, the self-titled Steppenwolf made its way onto the list, Feliciano!  by Jose Feliciano, and Disraeli Gears, another album from Cream, was at #10.

In 1968...The Top Five:  The Rascals spent a fourth week at #1 with "People Got to Be Free", Steppenwolf was at #2 with "Born to Be Wild", Jose Feliciano edged up with "Light My Fire", the Doors were at #4 with "Hello, I Love You" and Cream had song #5--"Sunshine of My Love".

In 1991...Dottie West was critically injured in a car accident while en route to perform at the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, TN. She died five days later.

In 2007...CIJZ Vancouver, Smooth Jazz format "Smooth Jazz 105.9" switched to Classic Hits as "Cool 105-9."

In 2011…Longtime Austin, Texas radio and TV personality/movie actor  Richard "Cactus" Pryor died  of complications from a recent fall and Alzheimer's disease at 88.  He received his nickname after the old Cactus Theater on Congress Avenue in Austin, Texas, which was run by his father, "Skinny" Pryor.

Pryor was first heard on Lady Bird Johnson's radio station 590 KLBJ, though his face became as well known as his voice once he moved to television broadcasting on Austin television station KTBC.

In 2012...Al Brady WOR FM, WWDJ, WXLO, WNBC, WABC (PD) died.

Al Brady Law
Law had three stints in New York radio from the late 1960s to the early 1980s. Law died at the age of  67. His work was varied, from air personality to programmer. His start in New York took place as WOR-FM evening jock in 1969. A year later, even though he bolted for Miami, Law was heard filling in on WWDJ, primarily on nights.

After some work in Denver, Law was back at WWDJ on a full-time basis as the station’s program director, along with his air work.  Following the short gig at ‘WDJ, Law appeared at WXLO where he was hired solely as the “99X” program director.

However, Law’s dual hats would return in a big way at WNBC Radio. In 1974, he was named a joint assistant program director and air personality. Later that year, Law took over as program director but only briefly before resuming his APD/weekend air work. He remained at the NBC flagship until 1976.

After stints in Boston and Washington, Law had another coveted New York job. Musicradio WABC was a shadow of its former self in 1979. The “D word” caused WABC to plummet. Disco 92/WKTU was the popular station in the market. It was Law’s decision to stop the bleeding by doing the unthinkable, firing Harry Harrison, George Michael, and Chuck Leonard.

Law followed the “controversial” time at WABC with, arguably, his best success: a return to the NBC family at their FM.

“I hired Al to his first GM job at WYNY. The station had a great group of talent notably Dan Daniel, Dr. Ruth Westheimer and Bill St. James,” Walter Sabo tells FishbowlNY. “Al and the PD Pete Salant took the station to a 5.0 share. His background was pure programming, not sales, and that’s why he was capable of managing such rapid audience growth.”

Eventually, he was promoted to VP of programming at NBC Radio.

L-A Radio: Vin Scully To Return For Another Season

Vin Scully is returning to the Los Angeles Dodgers in 2016 for a 67th season as the club’s announcer, according to Variety.

“I talked it over with my wife, Sandi, and my family and we’ve decided to do it again in 2016,” Scully said in a statement. “There’s no place like home … and we look forward to being a part of it with all of our friends.”

“Vin is a national treasure and the Dodgers couldn’t be happier to have him back at the microphone in 2016,” said Dodgers president and CEO Stan Kasten. “Vin makes every broadcast special, and generation after generation of Dodger fans have been blessed to be able to listen to him create his poetic magic since 1950. We look forward to adding many new chapters to that legacy in 2016.”

Scully, 87, has reduced his travel schedule in recent years and has been working on one-year contracts since 2009.

He usually calls all nine innings of the team’s home games and road games in California and Arizona for the Dodgers’ telecasts on SportsNet L.A. The first three innings of those games are simulcast on the radio.

R.I.P.: Former KGB-FM San Diego DJ Sue Delaney

KGB-FM website
Sue Delany_leighton
Sue Delany-Leighton, the longtime DJ whose sultry voice San Diego listeners tuned in to on KGB-101.5 FM in the 1980s and ’90s, has died. A tribute to her was posted on the classic rock station’s website Friday.

Delany-Leighton, called the “high priestess of afternoon-drive radio in San Diego,” in an April 28, 1989, San Diego Tribune column, was said to have been suffering from a number of health issues when she died this week, according to an NBC San Diego report.

Delany-Leighton was a mainstay at KGB, where she was also co-host of the popular Delany & Prescott morning show.

Delany-Leighton, a graduate of San Diego State University, lived in Los Angeles.

August 29 Radio History

In 1892...Harry Read was born in Seattle, WA. KXL Founder & Broadcast Pioneer

Willard Waterman radio actor Willard Waterman was born in Madison Wisconsin.

After many years as a versatile supporting actor he rose to the front line of radio stars when Kraft Foods picked him in 1950 to replace a disgruntled Harold Peary in the title role of their hit radio sitcom ‘The Great Gildersleeve.’   He assumed the role after a summer break in one of the most successful transitions of its ilk, and the program continued seamlessly for another decade.

Waterman died of bone marrow disease February 2, 1995, at age 80.

In 1924...KFQN 283 meters (1059.3kc) signed off the air at 9 P.M. forever. Oregon's First Religious Station.

Bwanna Johnny
In 1946...Bwana Johnny was born in Oregon.

Bwana Johnny, who had been battling congestive heart failure for several months, died in in 2005 Seattle at age 59.

Bwana, whose real name was Richard Johnson, had been a popular disc jockey at the old 1260/KYA back in the late 1960s. Most recently, he had worked in production with Jones Radio Networks in Seattle before his illness forced him into a care facility.

Before coming to the Bay Area in 1969, "Beautiful Bwana" worked at KLOG/Kelso, Wash., WUBE/Cincinnati and KJR/Seattle.

He moved on to WWDJ/New York as music director and afternoon-drive jock (1971-1973) and spun records for a year at WFUN/Miami before returning to his hometown, Portland, Ore., as "Crazy Dick Simms" on the Rose City's legendary KISN in 1975.

In 1957...The ABC radio network purchased KQV in August 29, 1957 for $700,000. ABC hired two executives from Storz Broadcasting to launch the top 40 format in Pittsburgh  They hired Dale Maudy who had been an executive engineer for the Stroz group and Ralph Beaudin, who had been a KOWH sales executive, as the KQV general manager.  For more on KQV: Click Here.

In 1958...The first of Alan Freed's Big Beat revues is held at Brooklyn, New York's Fox Theatre, featuring Chuck Berry, Billy Haley and his Comets, Frankie Avalon, The Elegants, Bobby Freeman, and Jimmy Clanton.

In 1964...In a clear case of rock and roll being saved by the British Invasion, Billboard magazine notes that guitar sales are the highest they've been since the advent of Elvis Presley.

In 1964...Roy Orbison’s "Oh, Pretty Woman" was released. It hit number one (for 3 weeks) on September 26th and became the biggest of his career. "Oh, Pretty Woman" was Orbison’s second #1 hit. The other was "Running Scared" (6/05/61).

In 1966...The Beatles played what would prove to be their last concert before a paying audience at Candlestick Park in San Francisco, to a sold-out crowd of 25,000. John and Paul, knowing what the fans do not (that this will be the last concert ever) brought cameras on stage and took pictures between songs. (Their lone remaining public performance was the 1969 rooftop appearance in London).

In 1972..Guess who was #1 in Knoville, TN?

In 1979...In 1979...Sheridan Broadcasting Corp purchased the Mutual Black Network

The Mutual Black Network or MBN was founded by the Mutual Broadcasting System in 1972, as the first national full-service radio network aimed at African Americans. It broadcast an hourly 5 minute newscast at 50 minutes past the hour. It also aired sports and feature programs, and for one year beginning in the spring of 1974, a 15-minute daily soap opera called Sounds Of The City. Some of its special programing focused on African American history, much of which was researched, written and narrated by MBN news anchor Ben Frazier.

Programming is what separated the Mutual Black Network from the rest of the pack. But its highest mark was made in the coverage of hard news and it’s savvy advocacy style of journalism. This was the genre of journalism, practiced by news anchors Ben Frazier, Glen Ford, John Askew and others. They would interview black news-makers who had previously been ignored by the traditional mass media outlets.

The Mutual Black Network was later sold to Sheridan Broadcasting which was a minority stockholder in MBN, becoming the Sheridan Broadcasting Network. By 1991, it would merge with the National Black Network, forming the present-day American Urban Radio Networks.

Lowell Thomas
In 1981..."So long, until tomorrow."

The baritone sign-off of pioneer broadcast journalist Lowell Thomas was known to millions of NBC and CBS radio listeners from 1930 to 1976. When he died on Aug. 29, 1981, he left a defining mark in news history.

Thomas started his career in print at the Chicago Evening Journal and later experimented with other media forms. During World War I, he went overseas to film the war for American audiences.

While in the Middle East, Thomas met a British Army captain named T.E. Lawrence. Thomas profiled Lawrence's activities in the Arabian desert in a film he titled "With Lawrence in Arabia." The film was a hit and made Thomas and "Lawrence of Arabia" internationally famous.

Thomas hosted a regular radio broadcast — "Lowell Thomas and the News" — from 1930 until 1976. The program was first on NBC and CBS, then later only on CBS. He narrated newsreels for Fox Movietone News for 17 years, beginning in 1935. Thomas also delivered the first regularly scheduled TV news broadcast in 1940.

Later in his career, Thomas formed a group of broadcast stations that would become known as Capital Cities. The company expanded through the years, and bought ABC in 1985. ABC is now owned by Disney.

Thomas was inducted into the Radio Hall of Fame in 1989.

Friday, August 28, 2015

iHM Promotes Programmers Hardin, Zellner, Maynard

iHeartMedia announced Friday that its National Programming Platforms group has named Brad Hardin as its Executive Vice President and General Manager, Jon Zellner as its Executive Vice President of Programming Operations and Maynard as its Executive Vice President of National Strategy.

All positions will report directly to Tom Poleman, President of National Programming Platforms, and will be based out of New York City.

In their new positions, Hardin, Zellner and Maynard will work closely with Poleman to oversee all aspects of National Programming Platforms – which includes collaborating with local programmers at iHeartMedia’s more than 850 stations to develop content to drive ratings.  National Programming Platforms also leverages iHeartMedia’s massive on-air and digital reach to produce live and televised events, including the iHeartRadio Music Festival and the iHeartRadio Music Awards; oversees the company’s artist relations; and develops and executes iHeartMedia’s national advertising and programming integrations.

Brad Hardin
Hardin will focus on the support for the local stations’ programming efforts, overseeing iHeartMedia’s regional Senior and Executive Vice Presidents of Programming and leveraging groups like the company’s Brand Management in-house format team.  He has been with iHeartMedia for over 15 years, most recently serving as regional Executive Vice President of Programming and the company-wide Brand Manager for iHeartMedia’s Active Rock / Alt stations.  Hardin’s extensive programming background also includes roles as Senior Vice President of Programming for the West Major markets and programming leadership positions in Tampa, Cincinnati, Dayton, and Louisville.

“I’m looking forward to working more closely with the amazing people on our National Programming Platforms team as well as programmers throughout our markets -- they are the very best in content creation and live event marketing,” Hardin said. “I’m excited to have the opportunity to further contribute to our future growth, and continuing to demonstrate the power of iHeartMedia’s local and national brands."

Jon Zellner
Zellner will manage the division’s operations, ensuring that iHeartMedia’s 850+ local radio stations in over 150 markets are able to best utilize the company’s unparalleled national resources. He is a 25-year media veteran who joined iHeartMedia in 2009 as Senior Vice President of Programming and most recently served as Executive Vice President of Programming, working with over 200 stations in all formats across 45 markets. Zellner’s experience also includes senior management positions at Sirius XM and CBS Radio.

“iHeartMedia continues to set the industry standard for innovation and one-of-a-kind content,” said Zellner.  “I’m honored and very excited to have the opportunity to work with Tom and the programming team on implementing new ideas and strategies for our incredible brands.”

In addition, the company announced that Maynard has been elevated to Executive Vice President of National Programming Strategy.  In this role, Maynard will work with iHeartMedia’s programmers to regularly review and fine-tune stations' on air products and oversee the company’s team of on-air creative directors led by Vice President of Imaging  - Kelly Doherty.

"I’ve had an incredible experience since joining iHeartMedia.  It’s extremely motivating to work with a company that is committed to exceeding expectations both internally and with our millions of listeners,” said Maynard. "The people in this company are what make it great, and I am truly grateful for this opportunity and even more excited for what lies ahead.”

“iHeartMedia’s strength is built on our great programmers working together to develop great content and experiences for our listeners utilizing our unmatched scale," said Poleman.  “Brad, Jon, and Maynard each have a remarkable amount of hands-on experience programming some of the best local radio stations in the world, making them uniquely qualified to lead our company-wide programming initiatives."

Report: Ian Rogers Exits Apple Beats

Ian Rogers
One of the key executives behind Apple's Beats 1 radio has resigned just two months after the "worldwide, always on" service launched, reports The Financial Times. Ian Rogers was formerly the CEO of Beats Music and joined Apple along with fellow Beats executives Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine when the iPhone-maker bought the company in May last year.

The FT says that Rogers' decision to leave Apple is unexpected, with the long-time music executive said to be moving to work in an unrelated industry for a company based in Europe.

The FT notes that Rogers was responsible for spearheading the development of free radio service Beats 1, hiring DJ Zane Lowe to front the station and shaping its varied shows and playlists.

The Verge reports that in a personal blog published the day before Beats 1 went live, Rogers wrote: "Seeing Apple Music on stage at WWDC this month [...] it was hard not to feel like the last 20+ years was leading to this day." Rogers repeatedly stressed the importance of curation and music discovery in music services, including in an interview with The Verge last year in January.

It's perhaps no surprise then that Beats 1 has been praised for its eclectic music, but it remains unclear how well Apple Music itself is attracting paying customers.

L-A Radio: Tuna, Kelly Depart Classic Hits KRTH

Charlie Tuna
Veteran Los Angeles radio personality Charlie Tuna has departed CBS Radio's Classic Hits KRTH 101.1 FM.

His last day was Thursday. It's also been learned that evening personality Christina Kelly has also lef the building on Tuesday.

Their departures come that same week that it was announced that PM Drive personality Shotgun Tom Kelly was retiring from the air.  It was announced Kelly would remain with the station as an 'ambassador' at station and client events.

National Radio Hall of Famer Charlie Tuna said he was leaving to focus on his growing company. "In the wake of the continuing massive changes to small, medium market, and even major market stations around the country, we will be focusing on 24/7 formats for stations that have lost the content, top talent, music scheduling and customer service." Tuna worked weekends at KEARTH.

Career highlights for Tuna include then-Top40 93 KHJ, where he debuted on Thanksgiving Day 1967. In 1972 he became one of the original DJs at KROQ AM, a new Top 40 station. In 1974 be moved to KKDJ as program director and morning personality. He presided over its 1975 call-letter change to KIIS-AM, and broadcast the first show at KIIS-FM as it began its AM-FM simulcast. He has also worked at KTNQ, KHTZ (later KBZT), KRLA, KODJ (later KCBS-FM), KMPC, KIKF, and KLAC. is offering stations 24/7 music formats with top rated personalities, in addition to Charlie Tuna himself, custom hand-massaged music logs in these first formats, Classic Hits, Hot AC, AC, CHR/Top 40 & Today's Country.

Stations choose the format, nationally known talent or use your own within their 24/7 music services.

Interested stations and talent should call Steve Wall now at 206-661-5551."

Sorry I wasn't able to say goodbye. XOXOXOXO
Posted by Christina Kelley on Thursday, August 27, 2015

San Diego Radio: Bob Sullivan Exits KOGO Talk Show

Bob Sullivan
Bob "Sully" Sullivan has decided to exit his afternoon show on Newsradio KOGO 600 AM, which he co-hosted with Carl Demaio.

He says he'll be concentrating more on his two national TV shows, The Big Bi Review and Sully's Biz Brew.

He's also indicated he's developing a new weekend topical show for TV and that his TV production company is "knee deep" in production of four cableTV reality shows.

The 55-year-old Sullivan, who has been an on-air personality at KOGO since 1997, will stay at the station in a scaled-back role that will include serving as business editor and fill-in host.

Sullivan, who announced the move at the beginning of his final three-hour show with DeMaio just after 1 p.m., said his decision was partly prompted by a change in direction for the show since DeMaio came aboard, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune.

“I like to talk red meat topics — illegal immigration, gun control and minimum wage — and I think the station wants that segment to go more toward local politics, pension reform and the water crisis,” Sullivan said. “Carl is very passionate about that stuff and I just am not.”

DeMaio joined the show a few months after losing a nasty race for Congress last fall to Democrat Scott Peters. DeMaio, a Republican, also lost the 2012 San Diego mayor’s race to Democrat Bob Filner.

Radio Groups Hit With Another Pre-'72 Lawsuit

CBS Radio, iHeartMedia and Cumulus — the nation's three largest radio station operators — are now facing multi-million dollar lawsuits both in California and New York over exploitation of pre-1972 sound recordings.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the New York litigation comes from ABS Entertainment, which owns the recordings of Al Green and others, and aims to represent a class that would include such iconic musicians as Elvis Presley, Frank Sinatra and The Beatles. It's being demanded that radio stations in two of the country's biggest states stop publicly performing their works plus exploiting older songs in any matter including linking to such recordings from websites.

Sound recording owners haven't traditionally been paid for radio airplay, but until recently, no one had challenged what laws might protect songs authored before recordings were put under federal copyright protection.

That changed in August 2013 when a proposed class action lawsuit from Flo & Eddie of The Turtles theorized that state laws governing conversion, misappropriation and unfair competition might interfere with uncompensated public performance of pre-72 works.

The following year, The Turtles scored success pursuing such claims against SiriusXM, which led to a similar lawsuit against Pandora. Legal observers predicted terrestrial radio would also face lawsuits, and now they have.  Robert Allen, one of the attorneys who represented The Turtles, is the lead plaintiff lawyer here.

The record giants filed their own lawsuit against SiriusXM and then came to a $210 million settlement. This past week, Sony, UMG and Warner opted out of the Turtles' class action against SiriusXM, and we're not aware of any litigation they've filed just yet against CBS, iHeartMedia and Cumulus.

"We intend to vigorously defend this lawsuit," says a spokesperson for CBS Radio.  Classic Hits WCBS 101.1 FM was specifically mentioned in the lawsuit.

Survey: Music Execs Love Swift, Hate Rap

A new Billboard survey of music executives offers some-not-so-surprising insight into how the industry’s head honchos really feel about the state of music today.

According to Time, the biggest takeaway:  The music industry’s head honchos love Taylor Swift. If the 50 executives surveyed were starting a label today, their must-sign artist would be Ms. Swift, followed by Lady Gaga and Adele.

The survey also revealed that executives least-favorite genre is rap music followed only by EDM. The results seem to suggest that the industry has a higher regard for not just one genre, but one demographic.

Read More Now

NOLA Radio: WMTI Launches Alternative Format

Cumulus Media has announced that it has turned-on New Orleans’ newest radio station WMTI 106.1 FM, today.

Branding as The all-new 106.1 the underground alternative, the station will  feature 106 minutes of New Rock for New Orleans every day, and signs with wall-to-wall music beginning at 3:00 p.m. Eastern. The station has also launched its new website,

Troy Hanson, Corporate Programming/Rock Formats for Cumulus said: “We are incredibly excited to debut New Orleans’ 106.1 the underground alternative. With key artists like Walk The Moon, Foo Fighters, The Black Keys, Fall Out Boy, Imagine Dragons, Muse, Mumford & Sons and a personal favorite “and more” we plan to give the French Quarter, the Delta and beyond a unique alternative experience 24/7. Look for a ton of music to be delivered as we push out 106 Minutes of New Rock for New Orleans all day, every day. Much thanks go out to Jim Kurdziel, Dan Stone and Ray Mariner as we bring 106.1 the underground alternative to NOLA.”

WMTI 106.1 FM (28 Kw) Red=Local Coverage Area
Jeff Brown, Senior Vice President for Cumulus said: “Underground 106.1 fills a significant format gap in New Orleans. If there is any city that deserves a great Alt brand, it is New Orleans. Fans of Alternative Rock are fiercely loyal, incredibly engaged, and in the age of acquisition. Like our audience, 106.1 the underground will be on the move and all about New Orleans.”

NYC Radio: Z100's Elvis Duran Talks Weight Loss

Elvis Duran
As the host WHTZ 100.3 FM Z100 morning show, Elvis Duran has no problem dishing out “real talk” to his seven million loyal listeners or rubbing elbows with the likes of Justin Bieber, Nicki Minaj and dozens of other A-list celebrities.

But one thing he was deeply insecure about for years was his weight – until now.

In December, Duran embarked on a dramatic weight-loss journey that has led him to lose 105 pounds in eight months, going from 265 to 160 pounds

“I feel awesome! I’ve got all this energy,” Duran, 51, told Nightline in an interview this week. “It’s still kind of a shock. I don’t even know who I am. I look at old pictures of me … and I don’t feel like I’m that guy anymore but then I look at pictures of me now and I’m not quite sure I’m this guy. So I don’t know, It’s kind of confusing. I’m an alien living in someone else’s body. It’s kind of strange.”

ABC Latest News | Latest News Videos

ESPN, CBS Radio To Promote Podcasts At Ad Event

CBS Radio and Walt Disney's ESPN are joining a handful of companies that will promote podcasts to advertisers at the Interactive Advertising Bureau's first podcast upfronts next month, executives told Reuters.

As consumers increasingly use mobile devices for content, media companies are turning to podcasts for potential revenue with advertisers often paying a premium for them.

Podcasts are a small, but growing part of the digital media marketplace with a wealthy, tech-savvy group of listeners, said Larry Rosin, president of Edison Research, a Somerville, New Jersey-based market research firm that serves media companies.

"They are more likely to have the tools and toys that make downloading podcasts easier," Rosin said.

While media companies and investors are concerned about viewers turning away from traditional television, 17 percent of teens and adults listened to at least one podcast per month, up from 15 percent last year, according to Edison Research.

Television broadcasters developed upfronts or a group of meetings to promote new shows and lock in commitments from advertisers, and over the past few years IAB developed the "Newfronts," which are upfronts for the digital video industry.

Now IAB is testing out if there is a market for podcast upfronts, said IAB Vice President Carl Kalapesi.

Many of the most popular podcasts, such as the recent "Serial" series are from non-profits, but commercial podcasts are growing.

CBS Corp's local digital media unit this year launched original content podcasts including pro wrestling talk show "WOOOOO! Nation" in a new division, Its audience rose 30 percent since January and revenue is up double digits, said division president Ezra Kucharz.

ESPN is seeing digital and traditional radio growth, said Traug Keller, ESPN senior vice president of production business divisions. This comes at a time when ESPN is seeing a decline in television subscribers, a move which has unnerved many media investors..

More broadly, while traditional broadcast radio revenue overall is declining, digital radio ad spending is expected to be $2.75 billion this year, up almost 28 percent from 2014, eMarketer forecasts.

Podcasts make up small double-digit millions of that figure, estimates eMarketer analyst Paul Verna. "It's a blip on the radar... but its becoming a bigger blip," he said.

On average, the cost that an advertiser pays for a thousand impressions, known as the CPM, of a podcast is $15 to $30, according to Midroll Media, which connects podcast shows with advertisers. Meanwhile, the average CPM for radio is in the mid-single digits, according to analysts.

ESPN and CBS join NPR, WNYC, Panoply, Podtrac, AdLarge and Midroll as presenters for the IAB upfronts which will take place on Sept. 10 in New York.

(Reporting By Jessica Toonkel, editing by Peter Henderson and Bernard Orr)

NYC Radio: WABC's Rita Cosby To Host "Back to Books" Special

Rita Cosby
77 WABC announces that Rita Cosby, award-winning host of “The Rita Cosby Show”, will present an exclusive web series called “Back to the Books Radio”, beginning Monday, August 31.

A new show debuts every weekday next week at 12:00 p.m. ET on a separate stream specifically designed for this series of dynamic and informative programs.

Throughout this week-long series, Cosby discusses timely and critical issues in American education with some of the nation’s most prominent voices in education, including highlighting: teacher and student standards, busing, charter schools, Common Core, and illegal immigrants and who should pay for their education. The series is a provocative and no-holds-barred look at the issues that are important to those who are concerned that the educational system is failing the country’s children—what is working, and what is not. The series looks in-depth at New York City’s massive public education system with more than one million students and 1,700 schools.

Each show is 60 minutes long and features interviews with top experts and thought leaders in New York and U.S. education.

Craig Schwalb, Program Director for WABC said: “One of the hottest topics in New York and the Tri-State is education. With school soon back in session, WABC focuses on the most important issues facing our schools with some of education’s most important voices. ‘Back to the Books Radio’ seeks to provide solutions to the complex problems facing our schools.”

Cosby said: “This series of candid discussions covers all angles of education from those on the frontlines to those in the head office. New York’s educational system will be put under the microscope.”

Report: Social Media Getting Bigger Share of Ad Dollars

Social media advertising is garnering a larger share of advertising budgets, according to a recent second quarter agency survey conducted by STRATA, the leader in media buying and selling software with over $50 billion in ad transactions passing through its systems each year. The survey found that 20% of agencies report they are likely to allocate between 11-25% of their ad budgets to paid social media, representing a 24% increase from the previous quarter. An additional 24% of agencies are allocating 6-10% to paid social. Facebook continues to lead in agency advertising as 93% plan on using it in their campaigns, followed by YouTube (57%), Twitter (52%), and LinkedIn (29%).

The rise in social media ad spend and newer advertising mediums has created a more complicated media planning picture for agencies. Media mix surpassed client attraction and comes in overwhelmingly as the biggest challenge facing 40% of agencies, marking an 85% increase from the same time last year. Following media mix was client attraction (24% of agencies) and client spending (11%). Similarly, 22% of agencies expect their clients to make minor budget cuts from last year.

“There’s an undeniable correlation between the rise in social media advertising with mobile device behavior,” said Joy Baer, President of STRATA. “Agencies and advertisers are going to follow their audience. Mobile users are checking Facebook and Twitter throughout the day.  So when you consider that around 60% of digital media time spent in the US is on smartphones and tablets, then it makes perfect sense to reach the audience in the apps that they’re already accessing.”

A key technology many advertisers are increasingly turning to is programmatic buying, which has been steadily gaining the confidence of agencies.

While 46% of agencies report they are still unsure if they trust programmatic to execute their ad buys, 20% do trust programmatic, a 49% increase from last quarter, while only 11% say they do not trust it, a drop of 32%.

Compared to a year ago, 244% more say they are using programmatic to carry out between 20-40% of their business (17% of agencies overall). Thirty-nine percent use programmatic for 10-20% of their ad buys, an 18% increase from a year ago. The biggest remaining concern regarding programmatic, however, is transparency into inventory sources (54% of agencies) followed by quality of inventory (50%).

Other findings include:
  • 22% are more interested in spot cable than they were a year ago (up 55% from last quarter), while 22% are less interested (down 13% from last quarter). 20% are more interested in advertising on spot TV than they were last year.
  • 66% are more interested in advertising on streaming/online video than they were last year (up 45% from a year ago).
  • 39% expect their growth in the second half of the year to better than the first. 52% say they expect their future growth to be the same as it was in the first half of the year.

Philly Radio: Former Eagle Joins The Fanatic Morning Show

Brian Westbrook
WPEN 97.5 FM The Fanatic has announced that former Philadelphia Eagle Brian Westbrook will join Anthony Gargano in the Morning every Monday after an Eagles game from 9-10am.

Brian Westbrook has been a regular contributor to 97.5 The Fanatic having co-hosted a Midday Show with Harry Mayes during the 2014 season and hosted his own show with The Fanatic as a player during the 2008 season.

Brian will be honored by the Eagles on Monday, October 19th as they will induct him into the Eagles Hall of Fame.  Westbrook was drafted by the Eagles in 2002 out of Villanova University and spent 8 seasons in Philadelphia.  He made two NFL Pro Bowls and played in 4 NFC Championship Games and one Super Bowl.

Westbrook is one of many ex-Eagles players who have found a second career on Philadelphia sports radio. Earlier this month, Sportsradio WIP 94.1 FM added former Eagles great Jon Runyan to their football coverage, joining fellow ex-Eagles players Hollis Thomas and Ike Reese on air at the station.

Chicago Radio: ESPN 1000 Kicks Off '15 NFL Season

Beginning in September, WMVP ESPN 1000 AM will feature the expert voices of some of Chicago’s most celebrated NFL figures.

Longtime Chicago Bears Head Coach Mike Ditka will return for his 10th season on ESPN Chicago1000, appearing remotely on Carmen and Jurko on Thursdays from 12:30 – 1:30 p.m. live from one of Ditka’s Chicagoland restaurants.  Ditka’s first show will be September 3.

Also, former Chicago Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher will appear on ESPN Chicago1000, joining Waddle and Silvy (weekdays, 2 – 6 p.m.) during the 5 p.m. hour for The Brian Urlacher Show on Waddle and Silvy. Urlacher will be on 12 select Tuesday afternoons beginning September 15.

In addition, current Bears offensive guard Kyle Long will be a weekly contributor on Carmen and Jurko (10 a.m. – 2 p.m.) beginning September 15.  Long will also join Waddle and Silvy on six select Tuesday afternoons during the NFL season.

“We have made Chicago’s pre-eminent sports talk station that much stronger by adding the most popular current and former Chicago Bears to our lineup,” said Adam Delevitt, program director, ESPN Chicago1000.  “ESPN Chicago is bringing the best of the Bears not only to fans’ radios, but we’re taking the Bears to the fans with live, on-location shows.”

NYC Radio: NASH Salutes The Troops At Six Flags

Dan+Shay With The Troops
Cumulus New York’s NASH FM 94.7 FM was proud to host the Third Annual “NASH Salutes the Troops” Concert at Six Flags Great Adventure in Jackson, NJ Wednesday night.

NASH FM 94.7’s Jesse Addy hosted the evening celebrating the members of the U.S. Military with a performance by Country duo Dan + Shay. NASH listeners enjoyed the theme park during the day and headed to the park’s Plymouth Rock Assurance Arena in the evening for the event. Park admission was free for anyone with a Military ID.

Navy Counselor First Class Dominique Anderson performed the National Anthem to open the show, joined on stage by more than 200 members of the 3rd Battalion and 112th Field Artillery for a stunning salute to servicemen and women.

Dan + Shay rocked the arena with an incredible show, performing their hit songs including “19 You + Me” and “Show You Off”, as well as classic covers like “Pour Some Sugar on Me” and “Red Dirt Road”. Please see the attached photos of the Third Annual "NASH Salutes the Troops" Concert.

Donald Trump: "The Hair Is Real"

Donald Trump's campaign has been promising specifics for weeks now, recently releasing a detailed immigration plan. At a speech in Greenville, South Carolina on Thursday, a crowd of about 1,400 heard one more specific: The hair is real.

CBS News reports Trump opened his speech by reading aloud from a New York Times article about staunchly anti-Trump stories published by Hispanic media outlets. He took issue with story's opening line: "Ricardo Sánchez, known as 'El Mandril' on his Spanish drive-time radio show in Los Angeles, has taken to calling Donald J. Trump 'El hombre del peluquín' -- the man of the toupee."

Trump wanted to prove that he did not, in fact, wear a toupee.

"It's my hair!" Trump exclaimed to the laughing crowd. "I swear! Come here. Just come on up here. They're going to let you. You have to do an inspection, this is getting crazy."

He brought Mary Margaret Bannister, the South Carolina House Majority leader's wife, on stage and let her touch the most famous hairstyle in the 2016 presidential race. The woman did as she was told and went to the microphone and said, "Yes, I believe it is."

NASH Next Contest Generating Website Stats

Cumulus announces soaring fan engagement for the social media-driven NASH Next Challenge talent competition, which will discover and release music from the most promising Country musicians. The first-of-its-kind competition, which kicked off in June 2015, has seen groundbreaking fan engagement on social media, the NASH Next website and the NASH Next app.

Key fan engagement statistics include:
  • Over 40,000 registered fans during the first three weeks of enrollment
  • 142 million total impressions in the past two months on social media – excluding impressions from privacy-protected Facebook, which generates 90% of social media-driven site traffic
  • 12.6 million people reached by NASH Next on Twitter and Instagram alone
  • More than 1.2 million visitors per month
  • 63% of the NASH Next website traffic driven by social media
  • Over 68% of total NASH Next traffic has been on mobile devices
  • A typical NASH Next fan views 5.8 pages and spends over 5 minutes on the site per visit 
  • Fewer than 6% of visitors leave the website after viewing only one page

August 28 Radio History

In 1922...WEAF New York airs first commercial ("This program brought to you by...").

The first radio advertisement (actually a roughly 10-minute long talk anticipating today's radio and television infomercials) which promoted an apartment development in Jackson Heights near a new elevated train line,

In 1961...“Cousin” Brucie Morrow starts at 77 WABC.

Morrow's first stint in radio was in Bermuda at ZBM-AM, where he was known as "The Hammer."

Morrow began his stateside career at New York Top 40 station WINS in 1959. In 1960, he moved to Miami for a brief stint before returning to the New York airwaves the following year on AM 770 powerhouse WABC, another Top 40 outlet. Morrow's return to New York City came at the precise moment that rock and roll music was exploding across the Baby Boom demographic and Morrow found himself on the most powerful radio station on the East Coast. His main competition came from his previous station WINS, which featured "Murray the K."

"Cousin Brucie" quickly became a success on WABC's teen-oriented evening shift in the 6:15 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. slot. Morrow became a commercial radio powerhouse and household name through his ability to maintain a rapport with his listeners while smoothly mixing the diverse musical genres of the time (Motown soul, pop, hard rock, surf music, novelty records), and then seamlessly segueing into commercials for youth-oriented sponsors and events such as concerts and drag-strip races.

He served at WABC for 13 years and 4,014 broadcasts until August 1974, when he jumped to rival station WNBC.

In 1966...the Beatles played Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles. It was their next-to-last live performance.  The Beatles performed in front of a crowd of 45,000 people. After the show, their attempt to escape the stadium in an armored truck went awry when they reached the main gate and found it locked. The Beatles had to spend two hours sitting in the back of the truck before they could leave the stadium.

In 1967...WCBS 880 AM flipped to all news.

By the early sixties, WCBS had evolved into a Middle of the road (MOR) music and personality format, which included limited talk programming. Personalities included legendary morning host Jack Sterling, Bill Randle and Lee Jordan. Like many MOR stations at the time, WCBS did mix in softer songs by rock-and-roll artists, as its ratings at the time were ordinary compared to the higher ratings at WOR and WNEW, both of which also had MOR formats and more distinct identities. Through it all, the variety show "Arthur Godfrey Time" remained a weekday mid-morning staple. Eventually, WCBS gained a foothold in local news coverage (WOR and WNEW's strengths) bolstered by its standing as CBS's flagship radio station.

During the 1960s, CBS chairman William S. Paley was concerned about the station's low ratings, and that concern started a process that would lead to the creation of a news radio format that would become known as "Newsradio 88". This format debuted on August 28, 1967. Its original roster of anchors included Charles Osgood, Ed Bradley, Robert Vaughn (not related to the actor of the same name) and Pat Summerall. Later anchors included longtime anchor Lou Adler, and others like Jim Donnelly, Harvey Hauptman, Bill Lynch and Gary Maurer.

Initially, the station ran news in the drive time periods but maintained an MOR format during the midday and overnight hours, and within a couple of years, it ran all-news programming for much of the broadcast day except for overnights. "Newsradio 88" began its transformation into an all-news format in 1970, when the overnight American Airlines-sponsored Music Till Dawn ended in January of that year, and completed the process in 1972, when Godfrey's weekday morning variety show came to an end. The station built a reputation as an all-news powerhouse during the 1970s, and has continued with an all-news format to this day.

Although 1010 WINS has usually received the higher Arbitron ratings of the two all-news stations, WCBS has had the stronger ratings in the outlying suburbs because of its broadcast-signal pattern. Its traffic reports and news coverage includes more of Long Island and the northern and western suburbs of New York City than WINS, and it occasionally allows room for longer interviews and analysis pieces than does WINS. The station is less tightly formatted than WINS, and formats at a half-hour cycle instead of a 20-minute cycle.

Courtesy of

WCBS-AM Newsradio88 debuts inauspiciously on its little-heard FM Station on August 28, 1967, because a small plane demolished the transmitter tower on High Island in a fatal crash, knocking the AM station off the air. Interestingly, the debut begins with a staff announcer reading the WCBS-FM sign-on, followed by the "Star Spangled Banner." Then, anchorman Steve Porter reads an account of the air crash. Pat Summerall delivers the sports, Gordon Barnes the weather. The rather ponderous presentation includes few if any commercials, and virtually no news audio. Charles Osgood takes over from Steve Porter at 6:00 A.M. The producer of the broadcast was Mike Ludlum, the editor was Al Wasser. Audio courtesy of Bill Tynan, Manager of On-Air Promotion, WCBS.

Part One 8/28/67

Part Two 8/28/67

Courtesy of

30th ANNIVERSARY BROADCAST WCBS's LET'S FIND OUT -- 8/3/97. Hosted by Rich Lamb, this special broadcast looks back at 30 years of Newsradio88. With Charles Osgood, Lou Adler, Art Athens. First of two broadcasts. Audio courtesy of Bill Tynan (30:00) Part One: Click Here.

30th ANNIVERSARY BROADCAST WCBS's LET'S FIND OUT -- 8/10/97. Hosted by Rich Lamb, this special broadcast looks back at 30 years of Newsradio88. With Jim Donnelly, Harvey Hauptman, Rita Sands, Gary Maurer, Ben Farnsworth, Bill Fahan, Neil Busch. Second of two broadcasts. Audio courtesy of Bill Tynan (30:00) Part Two: Click Here

Larry Lujack 8/28/87

In 1987...Superjock Larry Lujack knew it was time to go. ABC had already bought out Lujack's contract amid sliding ratings and on Friday August 28, 1987, after a slew of televison cameras, newspaper and magazine reporters joined him for his farewell, a tearful Larry Lujack signed off from radio and from WLS. His tenure at the station spanned three decades.

Despite Lujack's cynical on-air persona, he was actually quite easy to work with, his former boss John Gehron said.

"He was a professional, worked hard at what he did," Gehron said. "He was one of those personalities that surprisingly didn't cause any problems. His feeling was, you pay me and I'll do the job for you, and he worked very hard at it."

After ten years in morning drive, Lujack had moved to PM drive in 1986. Lujack signed off thanking listeners "not just for listening, but also for caring."

In 2012…Boston radio personality (at classical station WCRB for 57 years) David MacNeill, "the voice of the Boston Pops," died at age 80.