Saturday, May 14, 2016

May 15 Radio History

In 1923...WJZ moves to New York City.

The WJZ call sign was first used on what is now WABC in New York City. The original Westinghouse Electric Corporation, whose broadcasting division is a predecessor to the current broadcasting unit of CBS Corporation, launched WJZ in 1921, located originally in Newark, New Jersey.

WJZ was sold in 1923 to the Radio Corporation of America, who moved its operations to New York, and in 1926 WJZ became the flagship station for the NBC Blue Network.  NBC Blue would become the American Broadcasting Company in 1942. ABC later established WJZ-FM and WJZ-TV at the same time in 1948.

In 1953 ABC merged with United Paramount Theatres, and changed the call letters of their New York area stations to WABC, WABC-FM (now WPLJ) and WABC-TV. Four years later, Westinghouse Broadcasting acquired Baltimore television station WAAM (channel 13) and changed its call letters to WJZ-TV, which remained an ABC affiliate until 1995 when the station switched to CBS.

In 1961...Peter Tripp of WMGM 1050 AM in NYC found guilty of 35 counts of "commercial bribery".  Tripp was a Top-40 countdown radio personality from the mid-1950s, whose career peaked with his 1959 record breaking 201 hour wakeathon (working on the radio non-stop without sleep to benefit the March of Dimes). For much of the stunt, he sat in a glass booth in Times Square. After a few days he began to hallucinate, and for the last 66 hours the observing scientists and doctors gave him drugs to help him stay awake. Tripp suffered psychologically, after the stunt, he began to think he was an imposter of himself, and kept that thought for some time.

His career soon suffered a massive downturn when he was involved in the payola scandal of 1960. Like several other disc jockeys (including Alan Freed) he had been playing particular records in return for gifts from record companies. Indicted only weeks after his stunt, it emerged that he had accepted $36,050 in bribes. Despite his claim that he "never took a dime from anyone", he was found guilty on a charge of commercial bribery, receiving a $500 fine and a six-month suspended sentence.

Even his wakeathon record did not endure for long. Other DJs had quickly attempted to beat it (such publicity stunts being common in radio broadcasting at the time) and Dave Hunter, in Jacksonville, Florida, soon claimed success (225 hours). Six years after Tripp's record, it was smashed by high school student Randy Gardner, who lasted 11 days.

Peter Tripp- WMGM
After leaving WMGM, Tripp was unable to re-establish himself in the world of radio, drifting from KYA in San Francisco to KGFJ in Los Angeles and finally WOHO in Toledo, Ohio, before quitting the medium in 1967. Returning to L.A., he had more success working in physical fitness sales and marketing. He diversified into freelance motivational speaking, writing and stockbroking before settling into a Palm Springs, California retirement.

Overall he had spent twenty years in broadcasting: he began with WEXL in Royal Oak, Michigan, in 1947 then on to Kansas City, Missouri in 1953 where he worked for KUDL (where he adopted the nickname "The Bald Kid In The Third Row", apparently a description made by a parent upon spotting him among many rows of new-borns in a hospital shortly after his birth) and then WHB (restyling himself as "The Curly-headed Kid In The Third Row"; he was not, in reality, bald) where he was pioneer in the Top-40 format. It was in 1955 that he landed his ill-fated job with WMGM in New York, presenting "Your Hits of the Week".

Tripp died in 2000 at the age of 73 following a stroke, leaving two sons and two daughters. His four marriages all ended in divorce.

In 2001...XM Satellite Radio completes satellite system

XM Satellite Radio (XM) is one of two satellite radio (SDARS) services in the United States and Canada, operated by Sirius XM Radio. It provides pay-for-service radio, analogous to cable television. Its service includes 73 different music channels, 39 news, sports, talk and entertainment channels, 21 regional traffic and weather channels and 23 play-by-play sports channels. XM channels are identified by Arbitron with the label "XM" (e.g. "XM32").

From 2008...

The company has its origins in the 1988 formation of the American Mobile Satellite Corporation (AMSC), a consortium of several organizations originally dedicated to satellite broadcasting of telephone, fax, and data signals. In 1992, AMSC established a unit called the American Mobile Radio Corporation dedicated to developing a satellite-based digital radio service; this was spun off as XM Satellite Radio Holdings, Inc. in 1999. The satellite service was officially launched on September 25, 2001.

From 2005...

On July 29, 2008, XM and former competitor Sirius Satellite Radio formally completed their merger, following U.S. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) approval, forming Sirius XM Radio, Inc. with XM Satellite Radio, Inc. as its subsidiary.[1] On November 12, 2008, Sirius and XM began broadcasting with their new, combined channel lineups.[2] On January 13, 2011, XM Satellite Radio, Inc. was dissolved as a separate entity and merged into Sirius XM Radio, Inc.

Fred White
In 2013…Longtime Kansas City Royals broadcaster Fred White died of complications from cancer at 76.

White was best known for the 25 years, 1974-98, that he teamed with Denny Matthews in the Royals' radio booth.

White, originally from Homer, Ill., did his first baseball broadcasts calling American League games in Hastings, Neb.

He became the voice of Kansas State University athletics in the 1960s-70s and was sports director of WIBW in Topeka. He was nationally known for his TV basketball coverage, notably in the Big Eight and later the Big 12.

MA Radio: Sullivan, Wright Morning Show Dropped By iHM

Bo Sullivan, Adam Wright with Mass Gov. Charlie Baker
iHeartMedia's WHYN 560 AM has axed "The Adam Wright Show with Bo Sullivan" from its weekday morning lineup.

The co-hosts were given the news at the conclusion of Friday morning's show by Sean Davey, Boston area president for iHeartMedia, owners of the 75-year-old Springfield station.

Although the ratings were good, Wright said, management opted to replace the Springfield-based talk show with programming that also airs on its sister station in Worcester, about 50 miles from Springfield.

"I have been incredibly privileged to do live local talk radio in Springfield," Wright said. "Unfortunately, the nature of the radio business has significantly changed and I understand that."

According to, Wright has been with the morning show for two years and Sullivan with the station for two decades.

Their show is being replaced by "The Jim Polito Show" airing in the 6 to 9 a.m. slot whihc originates from iHM's WTAG 580 AM Worcester.   Davey said there were plans for the new show to originate from Springfield on occasion. The number of Springfield-based broadcasts has not yet been determined.

WHYN 560 AM (5 Kw-D, 1 Kw-N DA2) Red=Local Coverage

Nashville Radio: Bobby Bones Admits He Paid For Billboards

Back in early 2014, billboards stating “Go Away Bobby Bones” in big bold letters appeared on the Nashville scene.

Now, according to The Tennessean, Bones unapologetically admits in his new book “Bare Bones: I’m Not Lonely if You’re Reading This Book” that he paid for them himself. The cost? About $13,000.

“Everyone who considered himself a real defender of country music hated me,” Bones writes. “My attitude was, ‘This is how it’s going to work. I’m playing whatever I want to play. I’m doing the bits I want to do. I don’t wear cowboy boots or hats or belt buckles. I am not you; I am me.”

The Washington Post reports while Bones writes now he probably could have handled the transition better, at the time, he was determined to not change. But a year into his run, he was getting tired of being known as “the weird radio guy.” “My attitude wasn’t winning me any friends — or listeners. I needed to get people to like me, or at least feel sorry for me,” he writes.

Bobby Bones
“Working on the theory that it’s hard to hate someone if he is getting picked on, I thought, I’m going to turn myself into the one who is getting picked on,” he explained.

Sure enough, the phones started ringing: From listeners, his bosses and media outlets. The main response: “Dude, I can’t believe people are doing that to you.” Bones writes that people started wildly speculating who it could be, from record labels to other radio stations to country singers who didn’t like him. When media outlets (and even his own company) tried to investigate, they found the billboards were purchased by an organization called “Anti-BOBBY BONES.”

At the time, Bones was about one year into his run as the morning country radio show host on WSIX 97.9 FM The Big 98  in Nashville. His show, "The Bobby Bones Show," was broadcast on many iHeartMedia radio stations across the country and his style was hard-edged and crass — not typical for country radio. Locally he was seen as the successor to the beloved Gerry House — a comparison that wore on him.

Initially, Bones, previously a Top 40 radio personality, was unwilling to compromise his approach to country radio. He credited the wide-reaching dislike of him to “change rage.” Now he describes himself back then as “a bull in a china shop” and admits “no wonder everybody hated my guts.”

At the time the billboards were put up, there was much discussion in Nashville about who paid for them — was it a record label that didn’t appreciate his style, an artist he had offended? Today he knows the negative campaign he waged against himself worked.

Bob Romeo Exits Academy of Country Music

Bob Romeo
Bob Romeo, the CEO of the Academy of Country Music, is stepping down after 12 years on the job, the organization announced Friday.

In a statement announcing his departure, Romeo said his work with the academy "has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my career in the music business.”

“We’ve accomplished more than I could have ever dreamed," he said. "The organization is recognized as a leader in the business and that was my main goal when I joined the company. There is so much pride in how far we have moved the puck."

According to The Tennessean, the statement did not say why Romeo decided to resign, or what he would be doing next, although Romeo said he was "looking forward to planning my next endeavor.” Tiffany Moon, ACM executive vice president and managing director, will serve as interim CEO.

“We are thankful for Bob’s leadership and dedication to the organization, and wish him the best in the next phase of his career,” ACM board chair Paul Barnabee said in the statement.

Romeo is a well-regarded leader who has spent decades in the music industry.

Sirius XM Canada To Be Taken Private

SiriusXM Canada Holdings Inc said on Friday that SiriusXM Holdings Inc, its biggest shareholder, along with two of its top Canadian shareholders will take the satellite radio service private.

The deal values Sirius XM Canada at about C$472 million ($367 million), based on Reuters calculations.

Sirius XM Canada's shareholders will receive C$4.50 per share in cash or SiriusXM Holdings stock for each share they own, representing a premium of 6.4 percent to the stock's closing price on Thursday.

SiriusXM Holdings said it expects to pay about $275 million for the transaction, which will increase its stake in Sirius XM Canada to 70 percent from 37 percent, and give it ownership of 30 percent of its voting shares.

Sirius XM Canada said the rest of its equity and voting stakes will be held by Slaight Communications Inc and Toronto-based private equity firm Obelysk Media.

Slaight, a Canadian radio broadcasting company, was Sirius XM Canada's third-biggest shareholder with a 10.2 percent stake of as of Dec. 9, according to Thomson Reuters data.

The Canadian Broadcasting Corp, the national public radio and television broadcaster, will cease to be a shareholder in Sirius XM Canada following the transaction, said Jim Meyer, chief executive of SiriusXM Holdings.

The CBC was Sirius XM Canada's second-biggest shareholder with a 12.5 percent stake of as of Dec. 9, according to Thomson Reuters data.

Sirius XM Canada said the CBC, Slaight and Obelysk Media, its three biggest Canadian shareholders, supported the deal.

Much of Sirius XM Canada's content will continue to be created locally, while the company's existing Canada-led governance structure will be preserved, said Meyer.

FCC Sets Start Date For Online Public File

The FCC has announced June 24 as the start date for the first group of radio stations and other entities to migrate their public files online under modernized public inspection file rules adopted in January.

For radio, it means commercial stations in the top 50 Nielsen Audio markets with five or more full-time employees are required to upload their new public inspection file documents into the FCC-hosted database starting on that date.

Archived political file material is exempt from the online requirement. Stations will only need to upload new political file documents.

Click Here for FCC Notice

InsideRadio reports the date also applies to cable systems with 1,000 or more subscribers, satellite radio and satellite television operators. The online database opened for testing Thursday and the FCC will conduct a live Webinar to demonstrate the system before June 24.

Noncommercial educational radio stations, commercial radio stations in the top 50 Nielsen markets with fewer than five full-time employees, and all commercial radio stations in markets below the top 50 have until March 1, 2018 to upload their existing public files into the system with the exception of existing political file material. From then on, they’re required to place all new public and political file material in the online file.

Commercial broadcast licensees still have to keep letters and emails from the public in their local public file.

TWC To Launch Mobile App For Its 'Local Now' Service

The Weather Channel plans to introduce a mobile phone app for its recently launched online local news service Local Now in a bid to expand its viewership, Chief Executive Dave Shull told Reuters in an interview.

The cableTV channel rolled out in January an online service "Local Now" that offers local news, weather, traffic and sports updates. The service is currently only available on Dish Network Corp's online streaming service Sling TV.

"News should be personalized for you, hyper-local, and on-demand just like your favorite shows on Netflix or Hulu," Shull said on Thursday. "You shouldn't have to wait for the local news to come on at 11 p.m."

Dave Shull
The Local Now app, expected to launch in June, lets users access the service on iOS and Android phones by entering account information from their cable or satellite-TV subscription with some operators, such as Time Warner Cable Inc, Shull said. It offers a free trial for a week.

The launch comes as streaming services such as Netflix Inc and Inc's Prime Video gain popularity and viewers shun traditional pay-TV offerings.

Streaming or over-the-top services bring slim bundles of channels from sports to kids entertainment to viewers, but often lack rich local news content as streaming rights have to be painstakingly negotiated with hundreds of stations.

The challenge for local news stations is to satisfy mobile demand without undermining viewership for traditional broadcasts, which generate hefty fees from cable operators who pay to carry their content.

By identifying a viewer's location, ad-free Local Now creates a real-time, short-form newscast using live data from Weather Channel traffic and weather cameras and news from a handful of content partners, such as the Associated Press. The newscasts, which do not feature a news anchor, use automated pre-recorded words strung together to deliver news.

By leveraging existing Weather Channel infrastructure and using cost-efficient technology, Local Now can offer local news coverage to distributors at a "fraction of the cost" charged by local news stations, Shull said.

Local Now's competition includes Watchup, available on online devices such as Apple TV that aggregates news, including local coverage from Hearst Television, McClatchy and other outlets. Last fall, over a hundred local U.S. TV stations began streaming live newscasts through an app called NewsOn.

Shull said he is working on taking Local Now to more online streaming services, striking content partnerships and offering interactive segments in coming months.

May 14 Radio History

In Paul Sutton was born in Albuquerque.  He played Sgt. Preston on Mutual radio’s ‘Challenge of the Yukon’ from about 1943 (when he replaced the original Preston, Jay Michael) until 1954, when he abandoned acting and ran unsuccessfully for congress.  The show’s title had changed to ‘Sgt. Preston of the Yukon’ in 1951.  He died of muscular dystrophy Jan. 31 1970 at age 59.

In 1916...musician/bandleader Skip (Lloyd) Martin was born in Robinson Ill. He began on staff at radio station WLW in Cincinnati, before playing alto and baritone sax for a series of big bands, including Charlie Barnett, Jan Savitt, Glenn Miller, and Benny Goodman. He had stints with NBC & CBS radio in New York before arranging the theme and incidental music for the 1958-59 TV series, “Mickey Spillane’s Mike Hammer.”  He died in Feb 1976 at age 59.

In 1970..actress/comedienne Billie Burke, best remembered as Glinda the Good Witch in The Wizard of Oz, who had her own Saturday morning CBS radio sitcom (1943-46), died of heart failure at age 85.

In 1976...Lowell Thomas ended a 46-year career as a network radio reporter.

Lowell Thomas
In 1930, he became a broadcaster with the CBS Radio network, delivering a nightly news and commentary program. After two years, he switched to the NBC Radio network but returned to CBS in 1947. In contrast to today's practices, Thomas was not an employee of either NBC News or CBS News. Prior to 1947 he was employed by the broadcast's sponsor, Sunoco. When he returned to CBS to take advantage of lower capital-gains tax rates, he established an independent company to produce the broadcast which he sold to CBS.

He hosted the first-ever television-news broadcast in 1939 and the first regularly scheduled television news broadcast (even though it was just a simulcast of his radio broadcast), beginning on February 21, 1940, on NBC Television. While W2XBS New York carried every TV/radio simulcast, it is not known if the two other stations capable of being fed programs by W2XBS, W2XB Schenectady and/or W3XE Philadelphia carried all or some of the simulcasts.

In the Summer of 1940, Thomas anchored the first live telecast of a political convention, the 1940 Republican National Convention, which was fed from Philadelphia to W2XBS and on to W2XB. Reportedly, Thomas wasn't even in Philadelphia, instead anchoring the broadcast from a New York studio and merely identifying speakers who were about to or who had just addressed the convention.

However, the television news simulcast was a short-lived venture for him, and he favored radio. Indeed, it was over radio that he presented and commented upon the news for four decades until his retirement in 1976, the longest radio career of anyone in his day (a record later surpassed by Paul Harvey).  His signature sign-on was "Good evening, everybody" and his sign-off "So long, until tomorrow," phrases he would use in titling his two volumes of memoirs.

In 1984...Ron Lundy started at WCBS 101.1 FM

In 2006...Lew Anderson, the Howdy Doody Show's final Clarabell the Clown, died at the age of 84. Earlier in his career, he sang on radio with a group known as the Honey Dreamers.
Lew Anderson as Clarabell The Clown

In 2015…Blues singer/guitarist (The Thrill Is Gone, I Like To Live The Love, Rock Me Baby, 3 O'Clock Blues)/nightclub owner/former radio disc jockey (WDIA-Memphis)/Blues Hall of Famer/Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Riley "B.B." King died of complications from Alzheimer's disease and diabetes at 89. Circa 1950, his nickname on the radio was Beale Street Blues Boy, which was later shortened to Blues Boy, then B.B.

Friday, May 13, 2016

Donald Trump Blasts WaPo Owner Jeff Bezos

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump lashed out at Washington Post owner Jeff Bezos Thursday, claiming that the founder of was using the newspaper as a tool to influence corporate tax policy.

"Every hour we're getting calls from reporters from The Washington Post asking ridiculous questions," Trump told Fox News' Sean Hannity. "And I will tell you, this is owned as a toy by Jeff Bezos ... Amazon is getting away with murder, tax-wise. He's using The Washington Post for power so that the politicians in Washington don't tax Amazon like they should be taxed."

Trump was responding to Post Associate Editor Bob Woodward's disclosure that the newspaper has assigned 20 reporters to investigate the real estate mogul's life.

Jeff Bezos
"We're going to do a book, we're doing articles about every phase of his life," Woodward told the National Association of Realtors convention Wednesday. The veteran reporter, best known for investigating the Watergate break-in that led to Richard Nixon's resignation, said he had begun investigating Trump's real estate deals in New York, which he called "more complex than the CIA."

Fox News reports Bezos, who bought the Post in 2013 from longtime owners the Graham family, has donated to both Democratic and Republican elected officials. According to the website OpenSecrets, Bezos and his wife gave $4,800 each to Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., in 2009. The couple also gave $2.5 million to support a 2012 referendum legalizing gay marraige in Washington state.

"He thinks I'll go after him for antitrust," Trump said Thursday. "Because he's got a huge antitrust problem because he's controlling so much, Amazon is controlling so much of what they are doing.

"He's using The Washington Post, which is peanuts, he's using that for political purposes to save Amazon in terms of taxes and in terms of antitrust."

Facebook Doubles-Down On News Bias Claims

(Reuters) -- Facebook on Thursday emphasized that it does not permit its employees to block news stories from its "Trending Topics" list based on political bias, amid a controversy over how the social media superpower selects what news it displays.

Technology news website Gizmodo on Monday reported that a former Facebook employee said workers "routinely suppressed news stories of interest to conservative readers" while "artificially" adding other stories to the trending list.

The Gizmodo story triggered a reaction on social media, with several journalists and commentators raising concerns about alleged bias, and prompted a U.S. senate inquiry.

The social media company, whose reach is global, had over a billion daily active users on average in March, according to statistics the company posted to its newsroom.

In a post published to Facebook's media relations section on Thursday, a senior company official outlined its "Trending Topics" guidelines at length.

"Facebook does not allow or advise our reviewers to discriminate against sources of any political origin, period," wrote Justin Osofsky, vice president for global operations. "We have a series of checks and balances in place to help surface the most important popular stories, regardless of where they fall on the ideological spectrum."

The post went on to explain how certain topics emerge in Facebook users' trending feeds. Potential trending topics are identified by an algorithm, or formula, Facebook said, then reviewed by a "Trending Topics" team.

Gizmodo Editor-in-Chief Katie Drummond responded to the post with an email saying, "I don't see anything that contradicts our reporting--do you?"

Gizmodo's story sparked a Senate committee inquiry.

Republican U.S. Senator John Thune, chairman of the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, said in a statement on Tuesday that Facebook needed to respond to "these serious allegations."

"Any attempt by a neutral and inclusive social media platform to censor or manipulate political discussion is an abuse of trust and inconsistent with the values of an open Internet," said Thune.

IN Radio: Cumulus Loses Non-Compete Suit

Amanda Rollen
The owners of an East Central Indiana radio station have failed in a bid to remove one of their former on-air personalities from another station’s broadcasts.

Cumulus Radio Corp. – which owns New Castle radio station WMDH 102.5 FM, branding as NASH-FM – in March filed suit against Amanda Rollen and Hoosier AM/FM LLC, which operates several stations in Marion and Kokomo.

In the lawsuit, Cumulus Radio attorneys claimed Rollen had violated a “non-competition” clause – in a December 2012 contract – that prohibited her from engaging in “essentially the same job” for any radio station within 50 miles of NASH-FM for six months after leaving the New Castle station.

The suit said Rollen left her job as an on-air personality and programming assistant at NASH-FM on Oct. 2, and began work for the Hoosier AM/FM stations on Oct. 20.

In a ruling this week, Delaware Circuit Court 4 Judge John Feick denied Cumulus Radio’s request for an injunction to keep Rollen off the airwaves, according to The Star-Press.

The judge – who presided over a hearing on the case last week – noted attorneys for the New Castle station produced no evidence of any monetary losses, or an impact on ratings, as a result of Rollen’s work for the Marion and Kokomo stations.

Philly Radio: WPEN's Missanelli Crushes Innes On WIP

Last March 2015, CBS Radio WIP 94.1 FM's Josh Innes and former co-host Tony Bruno sent WPEN 97.5 FM The Fanatic's Mike Missanelli a dozen black roses after the duo notched their first afternoon ratings win.

A lot has changed in the last year, according to  Not only has Missanelli regained and solidifed his lead over Innes and new co-hosts Hollis Thomas and Marc Farzetta, but he also crushed Innes in the latest Nielsen Audio PPM survey of Philadelphia radio ratings.

What once was a close ratings battle between the afternoon sports hosts has quickly turned into a one-sided drubbing, with Missanelli on GreaterMedia's WPEN nearly doubling Innes’ ratings share in the key men’s 25-54 demographic during the April ratings period (March 25-April 20).

Unless otherwise noted, all survey results are among listeners 25-54, the group most sought by advertisers.

Missanelli ended the month first overall in the market, tying WMMR. Innes, who posted his lowest rating since taking over the afternoon time slot last year, finished sixth. The ratings among digital listeners are equally as lopsided.

Missanelli’s dominant win caps a great month for The Fanatic, which managed to beat WIP from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday for the first time in more than a year. In fact, The Fanatic topped WIP in nearly every measure of that key demographic.

One area in which WIP remains strong is the morning, with Angelo Cataldi showing no signs of giving up his ratings crown. The reigning champ once again dominated The Fanatic’s Anthony Gargano and Jon Marks, who once seemed to be closing the ratings gap but now appear to have hit a ratings wall the past few months.

Philly PPMs 6+ AQH

Milwaukee Radio: The Hits Keep Coming For WRIT

iHeartMedia's WRIT 97.5 FM was No. 1 (6+ AQH) in the radio ratings race in Milwaukee in April, marking the 13th consecutive ratings period that the station has been at the head of the pack.

According to The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, the Classic Hits station had a 10.8 share of the overall listening audience in Milwaukee from March 24 to April 20. That was up from 9.7 the month before.

News/Talk/Sports WTMJ 620 AM had a 6.8 share of the overall audience in April, up from 6.4. Country station WMIL 106.1 FM and adult-contemporary WMYX-99.1 FM tied for third with a 6.4 share; for WMIL, it was a drop from a 7.1 share, while WMYX climbed from 6.1 the previous month.

Tied for fifth overall were news-talk WISN 1130 AM and classic-rock WKLH 96.5 FM, each with a 5.7 share. Both dropped slightly from the March ratings period — WISN from a 6.0 share, WKLH from 5.8.

Demo 6+ AQH

D/FW Radio: The Ticket Wins Sports Radio Battle

Cumulus' The Ticket dominated radio's sports talk world again in the April book released this week. In fact, the station dominated the radio dials regardless of format in sports talk's target demographic -- men 25-54.

According to SportsDay at The Dallas News, the Ticket was No. 1 overall in men 25-54 during the ratings period that covered March 24 to April 20.

CBS Radio's KRLD 105.3 FM The Fan was second in sports talk and seventh overall in the target demographic that pays salaries and bills. It can take some solace in leading the Ticket in men 18-34 -- 5.3 to 4.7.

After its best March ever, The Fan's overall men 25-54 ratings were up from a 3.6 to a 4.2.

Sportsradio KTCK 1310 / 96.7 FM The Ticket scored an 8.0.

Cumulus' second sports outlet KESN 103.3 FM, which bills itself as "ESPN Radio", was a distant third in sports talk at 2.4 and 16th over all.

George Dunham, Craig Miller, and Gordon Keith
The always-dominant Musers, kings of morning drive, again were the only sports talkers to earn a double-digit share of the listening audience in men 25-54.

They scored a whopping 14.1, which, like all Ticket numbers, includes listeners to streaming audio. The station remains the only sports talk station to attract ratings on the streaming scale. The others have been unable to gain audiences that make an impact.

Demo: 6+

Release Of April PPMs Finishes With 12 Markets

Nielsen on Thursday 05/13/16 Released April PPM Data for the following markets:

   35  Austin

   38  Indianapolis

   40  Raleigh-Durham

   41  Milwaukee

   43  Providence RI

   44  Nashville

   45  Norfolk-Virginia Beach-Newport News

   46  Greensoboro-Winston-Salem-HighPoint

   48  West Palm Beach-Boca Raton

   49  Jacksonville

   50  Memphis

   52  Hartford-New Britain-Middletown CT

Click Here to view Topline number for subscribing Nielsen stations.    

As Strahan Exits "Live", Staff Is Worried

Michael Strahan, Kelly Ripa
Michael Strahan may be saying goodbye to Live! today but most of the staff members at the show understand his reasoning. TMZ is reporting that many people behind the scenes are Team Michael because Kelly Ripa's words do not coincide with her actions.

Sources tell the website that Kelly has been speaking publicly about respect and being a part of a family at the show but hasn't been showing that when the cameras aren't rolling. Staff members also support Michael because they don't think he did anything wrong and was just following his boss' orders.

The NY Daily News is reporting that some of the show's staff is also worried for their jobs as Kelly has been making jokes about moving the show to L.A. One source said, "If she's serious about it, she can push to make something like that happen. You never really know with her, but I don't think she'd bring something like that up twice if she wasn't at least giving it some thought."

Kelly appears in the new issue of People magazine discussing what she wants in new co-host saying, "Chemistry and camaraderie and trust. It doesn't fall out of the sky. It takes a lot of work, and it takes a group discussion. Let's see, if we put somebody here and somebody there, and, 'Oh, this guy really likes to talk about this.' or, 'This guy's really good here.' or, 'This lady is amazing.' or, 'She was great last time, let's give her another shot.' You want somebody working there who's comfortable working there. From my perspective, I like to get as many different people, men and women, in the chair as possible. Just because you never know who you're going to hit it off with. Some of the people I've hit it off with the best have been women, which is not unusual for me. I'm a girls' girl. I like the dynamic of that."

Kelly was photographed out and about on Thursday wearing a jacket that had "Freedom" written on the back which has been seen as a little jab at Michael.

Fayetteville NC Radio: 92-5 FBX Launches

Jeff Andrulonis
Colonial Media+Entertainment has launched 92-5 FBX a Rock and Sports hybrid format.

92-5 FBX, carries several syndicated sports talk shows, current and classic rock, and is the new home of Army (West Point) Black Knights football for the Fayetteville, NC.

Colonial Media + Entertainment Chairman/CEO Jeff Andrulonis says he is thrilled to be able to create a radio station specifically for the Fort Bragg military community. “92-5 FBX is built for Bragg because it’s based at Bragg. Our tower is just off base property so we’re literally the closest radio antenna to Fort Bragg. Because of our proximity to the base, this format is a natural. Plus the station ties in perfectly with our existing station, 100.1FM and down in Fayetteville.”

92-5 FBX carries rock in morning drive, then Dan Patrick, Jim Rome, and Colin Cowherd in middays and afternoons before returning to rock for nights, overnights, and weekends.

W250AQ 92.5 FM (250 watts)
In addition to the W250AQ 92.5 FM signal, 92-5 FBX is also heard on WFBX 1450 AM.

ASCAP Settles With Feds

(Reuters) -- The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, better known as the music licensing firm ASCAP, agreed to pay $1.75 million to settle a Justice Department charge that it blocked members from independently licensing their songs, the department said on Thursday.

ASCAP said that the settlement would allow it to press on with talks with the department over how to amend a decades-old consent decree that governs how songwriters are paid.

Under the settlement, ASCAP will pay $1.75 million for entering into some 150 exclusive contracts with songwriters and others even though a court order barred ASCAP from blocking them from directly licensing their own music.

Elizabeth Matthews
"With these issues resolved, we continue our focus on leading the way towards a more efficient, effective and transparent music licensing system and advocating for key reforms to the laws that govern music creator compensation," said ASCAP CEO Elizabeth Matthews in a statement.

ASCAP and Broadcast Music Inc (BMI), which license about 90 percent of music heard on online services and in movies and restaurants, have been pressing the Justice Department to change or scrap agreements it reached with them in 1941 in order to take into account changes that have come with the rise of music streaming services like Pandora Media Inc.

ASCAP represents artists like Beyonce, Billy Joel, Katy Perry and Hans Zimmer.

Currently, any dispute over the cost of a license goes to "rate courts," which were established by 1941 consent decrees and are based in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

ASCAP collected more than $1 billion in 2015, and distributed $870 million to its members.

Nielsen Inks Lease For More Office Space In NYC

Nielsen Holdings has signed a 16-year, 43,529-square-foot lease for a second office location at 675 Avenue of the Americas in Manhattan.

According to The Commercial Observer, the firm will occupy the part of the third and fourth floors that are connected by an internal staircase and feature 10-foot windows and 13-foot ceiling heights, according to a news release by Cushman & Wakefield, which represented the landlord, 675 Ownership LLC.

Nielsen plans to move into the property between West 21st  and West 22nd Streets in about six months.

Nielsen is headquartered at 85 Broad Street between Pearl and South William Streets. When the company opens its additional offices at 675 Avenue of the Americas, that building will be fully occupied.

Blake Shelton To Guest On Country Countdown

Blake Shelton, Lon Helton
Westwood One’s Country Countdown USA, which recently picked up new affiliate WKDF/NASH FM, Nashville, took the show on the road to Hollywood this week.

Show host Lon Helton went to the set of NBC-TV's The Voice to co-host the countdown with Blake Shelton. The two talk about Blake's new album "If I'm Honest," featuring his Top 5 hit "Came Here To Forget."  This episode of CCUSA airs next weekend, May 21-22.

May 13 Radio History

In 1941...Pop singer Ritchie Valens, remembered for the hits "La Bamba" and "Donna," was born. He died in a plane crash with singers Buddy Holly and J.P. "The Big Bopper" Richardson on Feb. 3, 1959 at 17.

In 1956... after 16 years as a Sunday feature on CBS Radio, “Gene Autry’s Melody Ranch,” aired its final episode. The half-hour  broadcast for Wrigley’s Gum featured 10 to 15 minute western action skits featuring Autry and his sidekick Pat Buttram, plus musical selections by “the ‘Singing Cowboy.” Autry went on to be owner of a chain of West Coast radio stations, Golden West Broadcasters, and LA TV station KTLA.

In 1963...Dave Kurtz and Jerry Lee signed on the Philadelphia station now known as WBEB 101.1

Previously called WDVR (Delaware Valley Radio) and WEAZ, the station pioneered the Beautiful Music format beginning in 1963.

The station was known for playing Beautiful Music featuring pop tunes reworked in the form of instrumentals. They played two vocalists per hour, as the instrumentals would be based on the works of such artists as Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Nat King Cole, Neil Diamond and The Carpenters. By the 1980s, the station increased the amount of music with vocalists to four per hour as they also added more artists suited to an adult contemporary format. Also in 1980, WDVR changed its call letters to WEAZ, and began using the slogan EAZY 101 with Patrick O'Neal (later Robert Urich) as its spokesperson. By 1984, EAZY 101 became the #1 rated station in Philadelphia.

In 1988, the station dropped Beautiful Music for a soft adult contemporary format. This format change came after research tests showed that people who grew up after the advent of rock and roll did not like instrumental music. With the format change, the station was satellite-delivered, but by the next year, some of the airstaff returned. By 1990, the station's name was shortened to "EZ 101". The station would shift to a mainstream adult contemporary format in 1993, and its call letters would eventually change to WBEB, B101.

Airchecks form 1982-84...

On December 10, 2013, WBEB announced they would be rebranding as "MoreFM at 101.1". The DJs and format would stay the same. The name change took place on December 26. With the name change, the station dropped their "Saturday Night 80's" program.

In 1969...The Beatles, now with beards and long hair, met at EMI House in London to replicate the cover of their first album for the cover of their current album project, "Get Back." When that project evolved into "Let It Be," the photograph was put aside until its eventual use for the cover of the compilation release, "The Beatles 1967-1970," nicknamed the "blue album."

In of the most prolific organists in the Golden Age of Radio, Rosa Rio died at age 107.  During her 22 years in radio, the “Queen of the Soaps” provided the organ background music for 24 soap operas and radio dramas, and played for an average of five to seven shows per day, including Bob and Ray, Ethel and Albert, Front Page Farrell, Lorenzo Jones, My True Story, The Shadow and When a Girl Marries.

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Report: Radio Targets Voters

As the general election heats up, radio can help campaigns and interest groups cut through the clutter and target the specific voters they want to reach. In a new report, the Westwood One Insights team has examined how radio can help both national and local political advertisers, featuring new insights from Nielsen’s Voter Ratings based on Nielsen PPM ratings from 18 markets, combined with Experian Marketing Services’ Simmons National Consumer Study.

The report includes the “political radio format planner” – an exclusive guide for media planners and buyers to reach voters based on radio programming formats. For example, thesecharts illustrate which radio formats are rich sources to target Republican, Democrat, and Independent voters.

Though these formats offer higher concentrations of specific voter segments, news/talk delivers the largest share among all three groups, in large part due to its status as radio’s second most listened-to format. News/talk has a 22 share of Republican voters, a 21 share with independents and a 17 with Democrats.

The report shows how radio:
  • Reaches a massive, engaged, diverse audience
  • Captures a politically influential audience
  • Supplements TV and digital campaigns
  • Targets voters by political affiliation rather than just broad demographics

PPMs Released For Portland, Orlando, 9 More Markets

Nielsen on Wednesday 05/11/16 Released April PPM Data for the following markets:

   23  Portland OR

   24  Charlotte-Gastonia-Rock Hill NC

   26  Pittsburgh

   27  San Antonio

   28  Sacramento

   29  Salt Lake City-Ogden-Provo UT

   30  Cincinnati

   31  Las Vegas

   32  Cleveland

   33  Orlando

   34  Kansas City

   35  Columbus OH

Click Here to view the Topline numbers for subscribing Nielsen Stations. 

CBS News' Morley Safer Retires

Morley Safer
Morley Safer, a CBS News fixture and the longest serving correspondent for “60 Minutes,” will formally retire this week.

CBS News announced Wednesday that Safer’s career will be celebrated in a special hour-long program right after the regular Sunday edition of “60 Minutes” on CBS stations nationwide. Safer is among the household names – along with the late Mike Wallace, Harry Reasoner, Ed Bradley, Bob Simon, and Andy Rooney, as well as Steve Kroft, Lesley Stahl and several others – who made “60 Minutes” a nationally celebrated treasure.

“After more than 50 years of broadcasting on CBS News and ’60 Minutes,’ I have decided to retire. It’s been a wonderful run, but the time has come to say goodbye to all of my friends at CBS and the dozens of people who kept me on the air,” Safer said in a statement. “But most of all I thank the millions of people who have been loyal to our broadcast.”

Safer, 84, was born in Toronto, Canada, and covered major stories around the world for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation before he joined CBS News in April 1964. He began his CBS News career as a correspondent in the London bureau, and opened the CBS News Saigon Bureau in 1965.

That year, one of Safer’s CBS News dispatches changed war reporting when it showed Marines torching the homes of villagers in Cam Ne, South Vietnam. The report, which appeared on the “CBS Evening News” with Walter Cronkite, was cited by NYU as one of the best pieces of American journalism in the 20th century.

Safer became CBS News’ London bureau chief in 1967, covering Europe, Africa and the Middle East and returning to Vietnam to cover the war.

Safer’s body of work has earned him the Fred Friendly First Amendment Award from Quinnipiac College, as well as special recognition from the Canadian Journalism Foundation. He has also received the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Awards First Prize for Domestic Television for his report about a controversial school, “School for the Homeless,” CBS News noted.

Safer has also won 12 Emmys, three Overseas Press Club Awards, three Peabody Awards, two Alfred I. duPont-Columbia University Awards, two George Polk Memorial Awards and the Radio/Television News Directors Association’s highest honor, the Paul White Award. In 1995, he was also named a Chévalier dans l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French government.