Saturday, October 13, 2018

October 14 Radio History

➦In 1934..."Lux Radio Theater" premiered.

Lux Radio Theater, a long-run classic radio anthology series, was broadcast on the NBC Blue Network (1934-35); CBS Radio (1935-54), and NBC Radio (1954-55). Initially, the series adapted Broadway plays during its first two seasons before it began adapting films. These hour-long radio programs were performed live before studio audiences. The series became the most popular dramatic anthology series on radio, broadcast for more than 20 years and continued on television as the Lux Video Theatre through most of the 1950s.

Broadcasting from New York, the series premiered at 2:30pm, October 14, 1934, on the NBC Blue Network with a production of Seventh Heaven starring Miriam Hopkins and John Boles in a full-hour adaptation of the 1922–24 Broadway production by Austin Strong. The host was the show's fictional producer, Douglass Garrick (portrayed by John Anthony). Doris Dagmar played another fictional character, Peggy Winthrop, who delivered the Lux commercials. Each show featured a scripted session with Garrick talking to the lead actors. Anthony appeared as Garrick from the premiere 1934 episode until June 30, 1935. Garrick was portrayed by Albert Hayes from July 29, 1935 to May 25, 1936, when the show moved to the West Coast.

Cecil B. DeMille took over as the host on June 1, 1936, continuing until January 22, 1945. On several occasions, usually when he was out of town, he was temporarily replaced by various celebrities, including Leslie Howard and Edward Arnold.

Lux Radio Theatre strove to feature as many of the original stars of the original stage and film productions as possible, usually paying them $5,000 an appearance. In 1936, when sponsor Lever Brothers (who made Lux soap and detergent) moved the show from New York City to Hollywood, the program began to emphasize adaptations of films rather than plays. The first Lux film adaptation was The Legionnaire and the Lady, with Marlene Dietrich and Clark Gable, based on the film Morocco. That was followed by a Lux adaptation of The Thin Man, featuring the movie's stars, Myrna Loy and William Powell.

➦In 1943...RCA (Radio Corporation of America) sold the NBC Blue Radio Network to Edward Noble for $8 million dollars. It was renamed ABC, the American Broadcasting Company.

Although RCA was identified as the creator of the network, NBC was actually owned 50% by RCA, 30% by General Electric, and 20% by Westinghouse. The network officially was launched at 8:00 Eastern time on the evening of Monday, November 15, 1926. "The most pretentious broadcasting program ever presented, featuring among others, world famed stars never before heard on the air, will mark the Introduction of the National Broadcasting Company to the public Monday night," the press noted, with "a four hour radio performance by noted stars of opera, stage and concert hall". Carl Schlagel of the Metropolitan Opera opened the inaugural broadcast, which also featured Will Rogers and Mary Garden.  The broadcast was made simultaneously on WEAF and WJZ. Some of NBC's programming was broadcast that evening on WEEI (Boston) WLIT (Philadelphia), WRC (Washington), WDAF (Kansas City), and WWJ (Detroit)., noted by the different background color. NBC Blue would utilize this logo until their 1943 sale.

On January 1, 1927, NBC formally divided the its programming along two networks. The two NBC networks did not have distinct identities or "formats." The NBC Red Network, with WEAF as its flagship station and a stronger line-up of affiliated stations, often carried the more popular, "big budget" sponsored programs. The Blue Network and WJZ carried with a somewhat smaller line-up of often lower powered stations sold program time to advertisers at a lower cost. It often carried newer, untried programs (which, if successful, often moved "up" to the Red Network), lower cost programs and un-sponsored or "sustaining" programs (which were often news, cultural and educational programs). In many cities in addition to New York, the two NBC affiliated stations (Red and Blue) were operated as duopolies, having the same owners and sharing the same staff and facilities.

Legend has it that the color designations originated from the color of the push-pins early engineers used to designate affiliates of WEAF (red pins) and WJZ (blue pins), or from the use of double-ended red and blue colored pencils. A similar two-part/two-color strategy appeared in the recording industry, dividing the market between classical and popular offerings.

On April 5, 1927 NBC reached the West Coast with the launching of the NBC Orange Network, which rebroadcast Red Network programming to the Pacific states and had as its flagship station KGO in San Francisco. NBC Red then extended its reach into the midwest by acquiring two 50,000 watt clear-channel signals, Cleveland station WTAM on October 16, 1930 and Chicago station WMAQ (coincidenally, a CBS Radio Network charter affiliate) by 1931. On October 18, 1931, Blue Network programming was introduced along the NBC Gold Network, which broadcast from San Francisco's KPO. In 1936 the Orange Network name was dropped and affiliate stations became part of the Red Network. The Gold Network adopted the Blue Network name.

In 1939 the FCC ordered RCA to divest itself of one of the two networks. RCA fought the divestiture order, but divided NBC into two companies in 1940 in case an appeal was lost.

The Blue network became the "NBC Blue Network, Inc." (now known as ABC) and the NBC Red became "NBC Red Network, Inc."

➦In 1971...Flashback with WCFL Music Survey..

➦In 1977... Bing Crosby suffered a fatal heart attack while playing golf at a course near Madrid, Spain. The 73-year-old Crosby  (with some 36 #1 records) had just completed a tour of England that included a sold-out engagement at the London Palladium.

During the "Golden Age of Radio", performers had to create their shows live, sometimes even redoing the program a second time for the west coast time zone. Crosby's radio career took a significant turn in 1945, when he clashed with NBC over his insistence that he be allowed to pre-record his radio shows. The live production of radio shows was also reinforced by the musicians' union and ASCAP, which wanted to ensure continued work for their members. In On the Air: The Encyclopedia of Old-Time Radio, historian John Dunning wrote about German engineers having developed a tape recorder with a near-professional broadcast quality standard:
[Crosby saw] an enormous advantage in prerecording his radio shows. The scheduling could now be done at the star's convenience. He could do four shows a week, if he chose, and then take a month off. But the networks and sponsors were adamantly opposed. The public wouldn't stand for 'canned' radio, the networks argued. There was something magic for listeners in the fact that what they were hearing was being performed and heard everywhere, at that precise instant. Some of the best moments in comedy came when a line was blown and the star had to rely on wit to rescue a bad situation. Fred Allen, Jack Benny, Phil Harris, and also Crosby were masters at this, and the networks weren't about to give it up easily.
Crosby's insistence eventually factored into the further development of magnetic tape sound recording and the radio industry's widespread adoption of it.  He used his clout, both professional and financial, to innovate new methods of reproducing audio of his performances. But NBC (and competitor CBS) were also insistent, refusing to air prerecorded radio programs. Crosby walked away from the network and stayed off the air for seven months, creating a legal battle with Kraft, his sponsor, that was settled out of court. Crosby returned to the air for the last 13 weeks of the 1945–1946 season.

➦In 1978...The Album Chart..The "Grease" Soundtrack returned to #1 on the album chart for the third time and 10th week total.  Boston's Don't Look Back was #2 with Foreigner's Double Vision and Who Are You by the Who trailing.

The rest of the Top 10:  Some Girls from the Rolling Stones, A Taste of Honey with their self-titled release, Nightwatch by Kenny Loggins, Dan Fogelberg & Tim Weisberg moved from 10-8 with Twin Sons of Different Mothers, Donna Summer's Live and More entered the Top 10 and Linda Ronstadt moved from 30 to 10 in her second week with Living in the U.S.A.

➦In 1978...The Hot 100..Exile remained locked into the #1 position with their great song "Kiss You All Over".  Nick Gilder remained second with "Hot Child in the City" and A Taste of Honey's former #1 "Boogie Oogie Oogie" was still hanging around.  Little River Band was up with "Reminiscing" and Anne Murray edged up with "You Needed Me".

The rest an excellent Top 10:  "Whenever I Call You Friend" by Kenny Loggins, John Paul Young's "Love Is in the Air", Donna Summer had her 10th hit and fourth Top 10 with "MacArthur Park", Boston was on the way down with "Don't Look Back" and Olivia Newton-John & John Travolta had song #10--"Summer Nights".

➦In 2000..composer/broadcaster Zeke Manners passed away at the age of 89.

He composed “The Pennsylvania Polka” for the Andrews Sisters, and led the popular band “The Beverly Hillbillies.” which inspired the TV show of the same name.  Zeke had his own radio shows in the 1940′s & 50′s in Los Angeles & New York, and a 15 -minute network show in which his live keyboard playing blended seamlessly with recordings.

Missing Journalist: Trump Vows 'Severe Punishment' If...

President Donald Trump will appear on 60 Minutes Sunday. The rare network television interview is his first with 60 Minutes since his post-election conversation with Lesley Stahl in November 2016. It will be broadcast on 60 Minutes Sunday, Oct. 14 at 7:30 p.m. ET and 7:00 p.m. PT on CBS.

Stahl interviewed Trump at the White House on Thursday. The wide-ranging talk touched on controversial tariffs, China, North Korea, Russia, NATO, global warming and the disappearance of Washington Post reporter Jamal Khashoggi.

In a clip broadcast on "CBS This Morning," the president says the Saudis could be behind the disappearance of Khashoggi and, if so, the U.S. would inflict "severe punishment." He also said the matter is especially serious because, "this man was a reporter."

Beaumont Radio: Tommy Muzzillo To Program KQXY/Q94

Tommy Muzzillo
Cumulus Media has announced that it has appointed Tommy “Jammer” Muzzillo as Program Director for Top 40 radio station KQXY Q94 in Beaumont, TX.

Muzzillo helped launch Q94 in 1993 and was formerly Columbia Records’ Dallas Regional Promotion Manager. He returned to his hometown of Beaumont in 2010, rejoining Q94 as Assistant Program Director/Music Director and Afternoon On-Air Personality under Operations Manager/Program Director Brandin Shaw, who recently retired from radio after a successful 30-year career.

Bo Brown, Vice President/Market Manager, Cumulus Media-Beaumont, said: “Jammer is the leader we need to take Q94 to the next level. Nobody understands Q94 music and the Beaumont market better than Jammer.”

Tommy “Jammer” Muzzillo said: "I am thrilled to be programming the station I helped put on the air back in 1993! And the funny thing is, our VP/Market Manager, Bo Brown, who took the reins at the stations about three months ago, was with me when we kicked off Q94 back in 1993! He and I work very well together and we have a really solid team at Cumulus Beaumont, plus having great Cumulus leaders and great minds like Doug Hamand, Mike McVay, Leslie Whittle and Louie Diaz to bounce music and ideas off of makes us even stronger as we take the station into the future."

Buffalo Radio: WECK Cracks The Top Ten

Buddy Shula has a reason to celebrate.  Shula, who purchased WECK 1230 AM/102.9 FM and 100.5 FM 16 months ago, is celebrating a book that shows his plan to use legendary local disc jockeys – including Danny Neaverth, Harv Moore, Jon Summers, Joe Chille, Tom Donahue and Gail Ann Huber – is working.

The station, which is aimed at listeners 50 and older, had a 3.0 share of the audience of listeners 12 and older, which Shula said is the first time WECK has hit that figure in 30 years.

Shula said he is proud of the accomplishment “because WECK is now beating major 50,000-watt Buffalo FM stations that have Wall Street backing and huge signal strengths.”

The Buffalo News reports WECK is tied for 10th place in household share with WMSX and is the one of only three AM stations to crack the Top 10 locally.

It has shown the biggest gains in listeners ages 35 through 44, ages 35-64 and ages 55 through 64. However, it falls out of the Top 10 in share in the age 18-49 and age 25-54 demographics.

Here are the Topline numbers for subscribing Nielsen stations for the weeks measured from mid-June through September:

NYTimes Staffers Worried About 'Click Bait' Stories

The New York Times is scrambling to quell a staff rebellion at its metro desk after the section’s editor, Cliff Levy, unleashed a blistering email to staffers last week, saying the section had “lost its footing” and was in need of “urgent” change.

According to The NYPost, The News Guild of New York, which represents the 40-plus journalists in the section, called Levy’s memo a “public fragging” by Times management and said his offer of “voluntary” buyouts as the section became more web-focused was “an unexpected threat to our journalism and our jobs.”

In a bid to defuse anger in the ranks, top brass showed up for a town hall meeting Friday afternoon, including publisher, AG Sulzberger, executive editor Dean Baquet, CEO Mark Thompson and Levy, the Pulitzer Prize-winning metro editor whose memo last week triggered the uproar.

In particular, they were forced to defuse concerns about Levy’s allegation that some metro deskers were resistant to adapting to the digital age.

Sulzberger — in an admission that surprised many of the some 125 Times staffers who gathered for the meeting on the 15th floor of the Times headquarters in Midtown — revealed that he had read the memo before it went out.

“He said it didn’t land in his brain the same way it landed in the collective mind of the metro desk,” said one insider who attended the meeting. “He didn’t see it for what it became — the bomb that impugned our reporting,” the insider added.

Times brass said the voluntary buyouts that are being offered are not a prelude to involuntary layoffs. Baquet, apologizing for the mixed message, clarified that “for the people that don’t want to go along on the bumpy ride, here’s a chance to take a buyout,” according to an attendee.

In Levy’s original memo, he said he wanted reporters to write stories that “engaged” the audience and had “impact” but said that they would not be judged by clicks alone.

Many worried staffers took that to mean that Levy did intend to use clicks — how many times a digital story was read — as at least one of the criteria in evaluations. Many worried that “click bait” stories whose sole mission is to draw eyeballs could become a factor in their evaluations.

FCC Responds To Net Neutrality Lawsuits

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is asking a federal appeals court to uphold the controversial decision to repeal the popular 2015 net neutrality rules, reports The Hill.

In a filing with the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals on Thursday night, the commission responded to a lawsuit brought by a coalition of Democratic state attorneys general and consumer groups saying that it acted properly in overturning the rules last December.

"The legal and policy analysis presented in the Order easily fulfills the Commission's responsibility to explain its repeal of the 2015 order and its decision to restore the prior longstanding approach to broadband classification," the filing reads. "Petitioners' objections to the Order under review are meritless."

The Obama-era net neutrality order, passed by the FCC in 2015, classified broadband as a telecommunications service, subject to the same common carrier rules as other utilities. At the time, the agency imposed several common carrier rules on broadband providers -- including bans on blocking or throttling online traffic and on charging companies higher fees for prioritized delivery. Those regulations marked a culmination of prior FCC broadband policy directives dating back to 2005.

Last December, the FCC voted 3-2 to revoke the net neutrality rules and reclassify broadband as an information service. That order replaced the prior regulations with a "transparency" rule that requires Internet service providers to disclose their traffic management practices. The December order also attempted to ban states from passing or enforcing their own net neutrality rules.

TV Streaming Fatigue Inevitable

As Walmart, AT&T and Disney join stalwarts such as Netflix in streaming video and creating original shows, a reality sets in: Not all will survive, predicts Mae Anderson AP Technology writer.

Over the past week, Walmart announced plans to partner with MGM Studios on original shows for Walmart’s video-on-demand service, Vudu, while AT&T’s WarnerMedia said it would create its own streaming service centered on HBO and Turner properties.

Disney, meanwhile, is buying Fox’s entertainment businesses to beef up its planned streaming service, set to debut next year.

Add to that some existing, but little-known services, such as Filmstruck, Sundance Now, Mubi and others that offer older movies or niche offerings to subscribers.

These companies are trying to keep up with the changing tastes of consumers as they stream video on demand rather than rely on traditional cable subscriptions.

But consumers have limited funds to spend; streaming behemoths like Netflix and Amazon got an early start and a lion’s share of subscribers so far.

“Too many services (are) going after the same consumer and piece of the pie,” Wedbush analyst Dan Ives said. “Streaming represents a significant market opportunity for the coming years but ultimately (streaming video) will have a few clear winners and a graveyard of those vendors that will fail.”

In a way, the overabundance of streaming services echoes the proliferation of too many cable channels in the traditional cable model and the old complaint of “so many channels and nothing is on.”

The streaming market is growing, although at a slowing pace. EMarketer expects the number of people who use one or more video services in the U.S. to grow about 4 percent to 206 million by 2020.

Google’s YouTube and Netflix are the clear winners so far. YouTube has an estimated 191 million users and Netflix about 133 million, according to eMarketer. Amazon has been nipping at its heels, with an estimated 90 million.

Newer upstarts will face a tough battle to compete.

FCC Call Sign Activity For September 2018

The Federal Communications Commission reports more than two dozen radio stations, including several low-power FMs, changed their call letters during the month of September.

During the month, the Commission accepted applications to assign call signs to, or change the call signs of the following broadcast stations.

October 13 Radio History

Cousin Brucie
➦In 1935...Bruce Morrow (born Bruce Meyerowitz) known to many listeners as Cousin Brucie was born.

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 powerhouse 77WABC. Morrow's returned 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 at the onset of the British Invasion.

"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 like Thom McAn shoes, local clothing outlets in the New York and New Jersey areas, 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 660 AM; after three years there, he left the airwaves to team with entrepreneur Robert F.X. Sillerman to become the owner of the Sillerman Morrow group of stations, which included WALL; WKGL, now WRRV, in Middletown, New York; WJJB, later WCZX, in Poughkeepsie, New York; WHMP in Northampton, Massachusetts; WOCB in West Yarmouth, Massachusetts; WRAN (now dark) New Jersey 1510 in Randolph, New Jersey; and television station WATL Atlanta. The group later purchased WPLR in New Haven, Connecticut.

In 1982, Morrow returned to the DJ role with New York's WCBS 101.1 FM. Initially, he filled in for Jack Spector every third Saturday evening for the Saturday Night Sock Hop program. Following Spector's resignation in 1985, Morrow took over the show and renamed it the Saturday Night Dance Party. The station also added his nationally syndicated show Cruisin' America. In 1986, he took on the Wednesday evening slot, where he hosted The Top 15 Yesterday and Today Countdown. In 1991, the Wednesday show became The Yearbook, focusing on music from a year between 1955 and 1979. Cousin Brucie was also the "breakfast presenter" on Atlantic 252 from 1992 to 1996.

When Cruisin' America ended its run in December 1992, Morrow continued hosting a WCBS show called Cruising with the Cuz Monday evenings until the end of 1993. After that show ended, he hosted the Saturday night and Wednesday night shows there until the station's change to the adult hits format called Jack FM on June 3, 2005. Shortly thereafter, he signed a multi-year deal to host oldies programming and a weekly talk show on Sirius Satellite Radio.

➦In 1963...the term Beatlemania was coined, as The Beatles made their first major TV appearance from the London Palladium. The BBC had an audience of 15 million tuned in. Thousands of delirious fans jammed the streets outside the theatre to voice their support of the Fab Four. A few months later, Beatlemania would sweep the U.S. as well.

➦In 1965…The Who recorded "My Generation." In a later interview, Roger Daltrey said he stuttered the lyrics in an effort to fit them to the music. The BBC initially refused to allow radio airplay of the song because it did not want to offend people who stutter, but eventually reversed the decision. "My Generation" was named the 11th greatest song by Rolling Stone magazine on their list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.

➦In 1967...CBS radio canceled "House Party". Art Linkletter discusses his years in radio.

Sponsored by General Electric, the 25-minute House Party premiered on CBS Radio on January 15, 1945, and ran weekdays at 4 p.m., three days a week, through January 10, 1947. Following a break, it then ran weekdays at 3:30 p.m. from December 1, 1947 to December 31, 1948. It continued to be sponsored by General Electric even as it switched to ABC Radio, where it ran for 30 minutes in the same timeslot from January 3 to July 1, 1949. ABC then aired it as a 25-minute sustained-advertising program weekdays at noon from September 19 to December 30, 1949.

The show returned to CBS Radio only days later, making its longest continued run from January 2, 1950 to October 13, 1967 as a 30-minute show running weekdays at various times. Sponsors included Pillsbury from 1950 to 1952, and Lever Brothers from 1952 to 1956. During its first season, the soundtrack from the TV show was run immediately on radio following the telecast.

➦In 1971...Don McLean's 'American Pie' was released to radio.

➦In 1974...Ed Sullivan, television host of the popular show which bore his name, died from esophagal cancer at the age of 73 in New York City.  The show ran from June 20, 1948 to June 6, 1971 on CBS every Sunday night.

He introduced numerous acts to audiences and the show featuring the Beatles on February 9, 1964 is one of the milestones in popular culture, viewed by 73 million people.

➦In 1978...President Jimmy Carter answered caller questions on National Public Radio.

➦In 1979...The Hot 100..Michael Jackson had his first #1 in seven years and the second of his career with "Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough".  Herb Alpert was a solid #2 with "Rise" while Robert John fell with "Sad Eyes" after just one week at the top.  The Commodores had a winner with "Sail On" and the former #1 smash "My Sharona" from the Knack was at #5.

The Rest of the Top 10:  Dionne Warwick's 42nd career hit was her first Top 10 in five years--"I'll Never Love This Way Again", M and "Pop Muzik" was #7, Donna Summer was up with "Dim All the Lights", Little River Band had song #9--"Lonesome Loser" and Earth, Wind & Fire closed out the list with "After the Love Has Gone".

➦In 1990...Because of the popularity of the movie Ghost which features the song, the Righteous Brothers went all the way to #1 on the Adult Contemporary chart with "Unchained Melody", 25 years after it first was a hit.

➦In newsman & first CBS TV anchor Douglas Edwards died of cancer at the age of 73.

➦In 1992...former CBS Morning News anchor Hughes Rudd, died of an aneurysm at age 71.

➦In 2010…Popular New York deejay from the pre-rock era, Jerry Marshall, who spent upwards of 30 years at WNEW, WMGM, WINS, WCBS and WNBC, died at age 91.   In 1948 he was the first radio host to play Nat King Cole’s soon-to-be #1 hit  ”Nature Boy.

➦In 2012…Radio talk show host (WOL, WRC) Bernie McCain, a Washington, DC broadcaster for all or part of six decades (1966-2011), died of renal failure at 75.

➦In 2013…Veteran radio host (WBBM and WCFL in Chicago, WMCA-New York, WISN-Milwaukee) Bob Sanders, half of the husband-and-wife broadcast duo Bob & Betty Sanders, died at the age of 89.

Friday, October 12, 2018

FCC: 'Michael' Knocked Out 4 TV Stations, 30 FMs, 4 AMs

The FCC has released a report on the status of communications services in geographic areas impacted by Hurricane Michael as of October 12, 2018 at 11:00 a.m. EDT.

Hurricane Michael made landfall on October 10 as a Category 4 hurricane at approximately 1:00 p.m. EDT near Mexico Beach, Florida. The report incorporates network outage data submitted by broadcast stations to the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) Disaster Information Reporting System (DIRS).

DIRS currently covers areas of Alabama, Florida, and Georgia. The operational status of communications services during a disaster may evolve rapidly, and this report represents a snapshot in time. As of today, Hurricane Michael has had a serious impact on communications services in the Florida Panhandle and parts of Georgia.

The following 101 counties are in the current geographic area that is part of the DIRS activation (the
“disaster area”:

Television stations status:
  • 4 TV stations reported out of service (WABW, WDHN, WFXL, WMBB).
FM Radio stations status:
  • 2 FM radio stations reported down with programming sent to another station (WHBX, WXRS).
AM Radio stations status:
  • 18 AM radio stations reported operational (WAYS, WCLA, WDAK, WEBY, WFTW, WGSY, WHBT, WHEP, WJAT, WLOP, WMAC, WNRP, WTLY, WVOP, WWIO, WWJB, WXLI, WXQW).
  • 4 AM radio stations reported out of service (WDIZ, WJYZ, WMLT, WXRS). 

Report: It's Been A Tough Year For Auto Advertising

A new report from Borrell Associates indicates for ad sellers – especially broadcast TV – the bottom seems to have dropped out. For the buyers, the cutbacks reflect lower new-car sales, flat used-car sales, and greater cost efficiency in targeted marketing.

Dealers aren’t spending less on marketing, reports Borrell. They’re just spending less on advertising. Marketing budgets are swelling, particularly for digital “services” that help them manage their own direct-to-consumer media channels in social media, email, and their dealer websites.

Total automotive ad spending this year is down 7.3%, to $34.4 billion. For 2019, Borrell is forecasting a 3.4% bounce-back. But 2019 seems a long way off, especially for companies that still have their 2018 fourth-quarter numbers to hit. Our five-year outlook is for low growth, averaging 1.7% per year.

Nearly all of it goes to digital advertising.

It’s all the result of fundamental changes brought on by the Great Recession a decade ago. That economic trigger forced manufacturers and dealers to rethink marketing expenditures and align them with what potential car buyers were doing and where they could be found. As a result, 67% of all automotive advertising now goes to highly targeted digital media, stealing from traditional print and broadcast channels that are considered less efficient.

Dealers are now spending 41% less to advertise a new car than they were five years ago. It’s gone from $888 in 2012 to $518 this year. It’s now easier to hit a specific target, which means dealers can be more efficient with their ad buys. “Mass” media still plays a role in branding messages, but even that’s now being challenged as video advertising migrates to the digital environment.

In the new report,  Borrell recast their numbers to provide a picture of what automotive advertising might look like in 2023. These reborn forecasts point to striking changes in future spending. The new model predicts that, five years from now:
  • Print advertising will be significantly lower than 2018 levels
  • Broadcast TV advertising will be significantly lower
  • Radio advertising will be lower
  • Cable advertising will be higher
  • Digital advertising will be significantly higher
All of this points to a very different marketing landscape for the automotive industry by 2023. The advertising piece of overall marketing expenditures is likely to remain in the $35-37 billion range, but marketing services are likely to get far more attention as manufacturers and dealers spend more time and money on their “owned media” channels.

Jessie Ritter is Cumulus Media's NASH Next 2018 Winner

Jessie Ritter
Jessie Ritter from Fort Walton Beach, Florida was announced as the winner of Cumulus Media's  4th annual NASH Next competition — a national and local grassroots search for the nation’s newest Country star.

The final competition event featured live performances from the top ten national finalists, and a special performance by Radio Romance, last year’s NASH Next winner whose single “Weekend” rose to the Top 40 on the Country Airplay charts. 

“So darn likeable,” “Very exciting and just delightful,” “You nailed it” were a few of the comments by the NASH Next expert judges to describe Jessie Ritter’s performance.  The winning band joyfully accepted their high-praise and went on to win the top honor and will receive national radio airplay on Cumulus Media radio stations, and a recording contract with Nash Next Records under the Big Machine Label Group (BMLG) umbrella. 

Jessie Ritter, said of her experience, “I’m very excited and blessed for this opportunity. God has given me patience and strength throughout this entire process and I’m humbled to be crowned the NASH Next winner. This is where I’m meant to be and I can’t wait for the adventure that lies ahead!”

The winner of NASH Next was selected by a panel of Country music luminaries and industry professionals including; Jimmy Harnen, BMLG Records President/EVP BMLG; Dann Huff, record producer and guitarist extraordinaire credited with multiple CMA and ACM Musician of the Year awards; Cindy Watts, 15-year veteran Country music reporter; and Terri Clark, platinum Country artist and host of national radio show, Country Gold. 

Harnen, commenting on the finale event and winning artist, remarked, “Jessie is just so darn likeable! Incredibly refreshing and in a complete lane of her own. We look forward to making an amazing record with her at Big Machine.”

On the NASH Next program, Mike McVay, EVP Programming and Content, Cumulus Radio Station Group and Westwood One, commented, "Radio leads the way when it comes to music discovery," commented. "NASH Next genuinely discovers new artists, enables all of the contestants to be heard and allows the winners to take advantage of an amazing opportunity to have their music backed by a major label as well as played nationally on the radio.”

The nine runners-up who performed at the event included:

  • Brecken Miles representing Appleton, WI (WPKR-FM)
  • Murphy’s Ford representing Columbia/Jefferson City, MO (KBBM-FM)
  • Harper Grace representing Dallas, TX (KSCS-FM/KPLX-FM)
  • Lane Mack representing Lafayette, LA (KXKC-FM)
  • Justin Rivers representing Montgomery, AL (WLWI-FM)
  • Jessica Rose representing New York, NY (WNSH-FM)
  • Pearl Clarkin representing Pensacola, FL (WXBM-FM)
  • The NATU Band representing Peoria/Bloomington, IL (WFYR-FM, WBWN-FM, WJBC-FM)
  • Brian Fuller representing Savannah, GA (WJCL-FM)

St. Louis Radio: Country 92.3 Searching For “Hottest Firefighter”

WIL's Bud and Broadway
New Country WIL 92.3 ‘s “Bud and Broadway” - the two-time CMA-nominated and ACM award-winning local New Country morning show - announces their search for the St. Louis area’s “Hottest Firefighter”.

The “Hottest Firefighter” Search will help New Country 92.3 heighten listener awareness of Fire Prevention Week, which takes place October 7th through 13th during National Fire Prevention Month, October 2018.

“Bud and Broadway” found the bi-state's hottest cop earlier this year, and now the New Country "Home Team" is searching for the bi-state's hottest firefighter!

In order to nominate a local firefighter, station fans and loyal listeners can upload their favorite “hot” firefighter's photo to Bud and Broadway's Facebook page from now through 12:00 midnight on Sunday, October 14th.
On Monday morning, the “Home Team” crew will announce the firefighter finalists during the Morning Show, and the public will be able to vote for their “hottest” choice online on Bud and Broadway’s “Hot Firefighter” Facebook page. There will be three total rounds with voting ending on Friday October 26th at 5:00 am, and the “Hottest Firefighter” winner will be announced later that morning on the Bud and Broadway Morning Show. The winning firefighter will win passes to Jinglefest to hang in the New Country 92.3 VIP suite!

According to Broadway, “Our goal is to honor local fire fighters while having some fun in the process.” Bud concurs, noting “We appreciate and depend on local fire fighters. We could never give them enough recognition but hopefully this will bring them all a smile.”

Kelly from Arnold adds, “With it being Fire Prevention month, we wanted to find a way to salute our local heroes. The Hottest Fireman contest seemed perfect - plus we just love their mustaches!”

Report: Emmis Giving Up on NextRadio

NextRadio—a costly initiative led by Emmis Communications Corp. to make mobile phones act like smart portable radios—appears to be history after the company said it would no longer fund the effort, reports the Indianapolis Business Journal.

NextRadio, which began in 2012 and operated as a subsidiary of Emmis, was intended to be an industry-wide effort. But Emmis boss Jeff Smulyan said Thursday morning during an earnings call that the consortium he had hoped to build never materialized. Instead, Emmis racked up tens of millions of dollars in losses.

Emmis officials announced Thursday morning that the Indianapolis-based radio company has lost $7.6 million on NextRadio in the last 12 months alone.

The type of loss Emmis had this year with NextRadio “has been going on year after year,” Smulyan said.

Smulyan said Thursday that there was considerable support for NextRadio, which allowed cell phones using an app to tune into FM radio with various enhancements not available through a traditional radio, and allowed advertisers to more directly target listeners with tailored messages. But Smulyan admitted that support “was 10 miles wide and a tenth of a mile deep.”

After years of negotiations, Emmis finally got buy-in from a number of major cell phone carriers to allow their cell phones to activate a chip so the FM radio app would work.

But Emmis’ negotiations with other radio operators weren’t as successful. Some within the industry said cash-strapped radio operators didn’t have enough money to support the effort.

The company said it planned "to dramatically reduce the operations" of NextRadio and related business TagStation, and "explore other means of eliminating the operating losses from these businesses in the coming months."

It’s unclear what will happen to Next Radio President Paul Brenner and his staff.

Smulyan added that the staffers working on the NextRadio initiative produced “some of the most innovative and groundbreaking work I’ve ever seen. They’re brilliant, hard-working and dedicated.”

Turks Say They Have Recordings Supporting Journalist Was Murdered

Reuters photo
Turkish officials have shared contents of video and audio recordings with the Trump Administration that reportedly contain evidence supporting claims that a Washington Post contributor was murdered by the Saudi government.

The Washington Post reported Thursday night that recordings of Saudi consulate officials in Turkey obtained by Turkish investigators and shared with their U.S. counterparts detail how Jamal Khashoggi was tortured, killed, and dismembered by a Saudi Arabian security team at the country's consulate in Istanbul.

It's unclear whether the U.S. has been given direct access to the recordings, the Post reported, but U.S. officials confirmed that the Trump administration was made aware of their contents.

“You can hear his voice and the voices of men speaking Arabic,” one person with knowledge of the recordings told the Post. “You can hear how he was interrogated, tortured and then murdered.”

“The voice recording from inside the embassy lays out what happened to Jamal after he entered,” the Post's source added, while a second official told the newspaper that Khashoggi could be heard on the recording undergoing beatings from his captors.

According to The Hill, Khashoggi's disappearance has evolved into a full-fledged international diplomatic crisis for the Saudi government, led by Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman. Salman cast himself as a progressive reformer, but the disappearance and possible murder of a critical voice against his government has thrown Salman's relationship with foreign leaders and organizations into question.

The New York Times, The Economist and a number of notable journalists announced Thursday that they would withdraw from an international media event in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, later this month as a result of the Khashoggi's disappearance.

President Trump indicated Thursday that his administration was investigating Khashoggi's disappearance.

Mr. West Goes To Washington to Meet Trump

Kanye West on Thursday delivered a bizarre, F-bomb and curse-filled rant during a meeting in the Oval Office — after which, reports The NYPost, President Trump said the MAGA-hat wearing rapper could one day fill his shoes as the commander-in-chief.

“Could very well be,” Trump said when asked if he thought West was presidential material.

“Only after 2024,” Yeezy responded.

West earlier launched into his soliloquy, in which he touched on his decision to wear the MAGA hat on the set of “Saturday Night Live,” his bi-polar diagnosis and being part of the extended Kardashian family, among other topics.

“Let’s stop worrying about the future, all we have is today … Trump is on his hero’s journey right now. He might not have thought he’d have a crazy motherf–ker like me” in the White House, he said.

Earlier, Beach Boy Mike Love, B-lister Kid Rock, ex-NFL great Jim Brown and Sam Moore of the legendary duo San and Dave were all on hand at the White House as Trump signed the Music Modernization Act, which among other things makes it easier for artists to get paid when their music streams online.

But West — Trump’s guest for a working lunch — stole the show, leaving even the usually loquacious president at a loss for words.

West talked about how life is a struggle, and people need to be brave to survive.

“I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and connected with a neuropsychologist that works with the athletes and the NBA and the NFL. He looked at my brain,” he  disclosed.

“He said that I actually wasn’t bipolar. I had sleep deprivation that can cause dementia 10 to 20 years from now where I wouldn’t remember my son’s name. All this power I got and I’m taking my son to the Sox game and all of that, I wouldn’t be able to remember his name from the misdiagnosis,” he said.

At another point, he was asked about accusations that Trump was a racist.

“As black people we have to take responsibility for what we’re doing. We kill each other more than police officers,” West said.

Trump sat stoically during West’s performance, breaking his silence when it was winding down.

“I tell you what that was pretty impressive. That was quite something,” Trump said.

“It was from the soul. I just channeled it, you are tasting a fine wine. It has complex notes to it,” West replied.

“He can speak for me any time he wants. He’s a smart cookie. He gets it,” the president observed.

Trump’s meeting with West focused on urban revitalization, record highs in African American employment, the creation of manufacturing jobs, ideas from his meeting with African American pastors, potential future clemencies, and addressing the massive violent crime surge in Chicago, the White House said in a statement.

WWOne’s MNF Broadcast Features Father-Daughter Team

Olivia Harlan Dekker with dad Kevin Harlan
This Monday night, October 15, Westwood One presents the first-ever national NFL broadcast to feature a father-daughter broadcast team.

The network’s Monday Night Football play-by-play announcer Kevin Harlan will be joined by his daughter Olivia Harlan Dekker as the sideline reporter for the San Francisco 49ers vs. Green Bay Packers matchup at Lambeau Field.  Hall of Famer Kurt Warner will be the game analyst.

 “It's probably every parent’s dream to someday get a chance to work side-by-side with their child,” said Kevin Harlan. “The fact that this will be at Lambeau Field where Olivia’s grandfather ran the Green Bay Packers for more than two decades, and where she used to play as a little girl and attended many games growing up, makes it even more special. To be a part of an NFL broadcast is always an honor, but to have our daughter as part of our crew is extraordinary and wonderful.  I know I speak for Olivia, my wife Ann, and our three other children in saying that this will be an incredibly proud moment for our family, and we offer our sincere thanks to Westwood One and the NFL.”

Harlan Dekker added “My Dad is my greatest coach, but I’ve learned the most just by watching him with admiring eyes my whole life. His perpetual drive to improve at his craft, the thorough preparation for every game, and the class and professionalism that he’s known for are the gold standard. To work an NFL game together on national radio is a personal and professional highlight for me, of which I’m so thankful to Westwood One for the opportunity. We both can’t wait for Monday night at Lambeau!”

 For the second straight year, Olivia Harlan Dekker will also work sidelines for Westwood One for the SEC Championship. Harlan Dekker is currently working her fourth season of college football with ESPN as a sideline reporter for college football games. She previously worked games on the SEC Network, was a sideline reporter for Green Bay Packers preseason games on Packers TV Network, and a host of ACC All-Access and sideline reporter for Atlanta Hawks games on Fox Sports South. In 2013, she co-hosted a daily web series on for the Green Bay Packers training camp as the team reporter.

It’s not the first time a father and child have broadcast a game for Westwood One; the legendary Marv Albert and his son Kenny Albert worked select Monday Night Football games together during the 2004-2005 seasons. Marv did play-by-play and Kenny worked the sidelines.

Westwood One’s NFL broadcast coverage can heard on nearly 500 terrestrial radio stations nationwide, as well as on SiriusXM, the TuneIn app, and on NFL Game Pass.

Tucker Carlson Book Jumps to Number One

Fox News host Tucker Carlson's book, "Ship of Fools: How a Selfish Ruling Class Is Bringing America to the Brink of Revolution," has vaulted to No. 1 on the New York Times best-seller list, unseating Bob Woodward's "Fear: Trump in the White House" after four weeks in the top spot.

Woodward being toppled from the top spot is notable, as it was Barnes & Nobel's fastest-selling book in over three years. On its release day of Sept. 11, for example, it sold more than one copy per second.

Carlson took to Twitter to thank readers for the success of the book.

Carlson, a one-time CNN and MSNBC host, has been one of Fox's biggest successes in the post-Roger Ailes era.

Carlson consistently finishes in the top 3 from a ratings perspective in the cable news race along with Fox's Sean Hannity and MSNBC's Rachel Maddow. In the third quarter of this year, Carlson averaged 2.78 million viewers.

The Weather Channel Was Number 1 Wednesday Morning

The Weather Channel is traditionally the go-to source for breaking news about weather-related events on television, and has been for years. So it’s not particularly surprising to see that it delivered more adults 25-54 this past Wednesday  – the day Hurricane Michael made landfall and inflicted an extraordinary amount of damage on the Florida panhandle – than any other cable news network in a number of different dayparts.

TV Newser reports per Nielsen data from Wednesday, The Weather Channel ranked No. 1 among all cable networks across the 3 a.m. – 3 a.m. daypart among adults 25-54, which is the demographic news advertisers tend to base their ad spend on. That’s +8 percent more than Fox News Channel, +59 percent more than CNN and +108 percent than MSNBC.

TWC was also the No. 1 basic cable network among adults 25-54 in the 5 a.m. – 9 a.m. daypart. Apparently the first thing people wanted to find out upon waking up was how bad the weather currently was, and how bad the weather it would be going forward. They selected The Weather Channel for that information.

That being said, TWC wasn’t No. 1 on Wednesday in every daypart. For instance, in Sales Day (7 a.m. – 2 a.m.) it was edged by Fox News 416,000 vs. 406, 000, per Nielsen data.

Additionally, The Weather Channel ranked No. 5 in Wednesday prime time in the aforementioned A25-54 demo, finishing behind TBS, (which broadcast the Yankees-Red Sox series clincher) Fox News Channel, FX and ESPN.

HRN Media Network Hires Media All-Star Matt Feinberg

Matt Feinberg
HRN Media Network, a Gen Media Partners company and the largest independent Hispanic platform in the U.S., has hired broadcast and digital media expert Matt Feinberg as its Chief Strategy Officer.

The move marks the return to radio for the seasoned brand marketer, who will report to Clark Logan, President of HRN Media Network.

“Matt is a long-time media industry veteran, who has been involved with growth-oriented companies and credited for leading their expansion across emerging technologies and platforms,” Logan commented. “As HRN looks to meet the many opportunities that go beyond broadcast radio, Matt’s experience and knowledge will be pivotal in helping us achieve results for our content partners and advertisers.”

I'm thrilled to return to radio and work with the team at HRN,” stated Feinberg. “HRN is a very forward-thinking media group looking to expand their offerings to advertisers, and I am excited to be part of the process."

“We are thrilled to have Matt join our team,” said Mike Woessner, Vice President, HRN Media Network. “Matt has a deep understanding of Hispanic radio from his days on the agency side, giving him first-hand insights into the Hispanic radio buyer’s thought process. His background in planning and buying media for leading agencies, combined with his knowledge of and experience in the digital space, will help advance our goals at HRN.”

Feinberg will be based in the HRN Media Network office at Gen Media Partners’ headquarters in New York City.

Fort Wayne Radio: Fill-In Host Donates Pay To WOWO Penn Pitch

With the recent death of WOWO’s beloved morning host Charly Butcher, Several people have been serving as fill-in hosts until a replacement is found.  That includes Mike Wilson who worked alongside Butcher nearly seven years ago.

Wilson has been in Speedway Indiana, just outside of Indianapolis for a few years working as the Personal Relations Director for Comcast.

“I can do my part to actually help out, bring what I know Charly offered to the morning show cause I knew that’s what made Charly special,” said Wilson.

Wilson added that Charly displayed everything a host should display saying, “You knew exactly who Charly was just by listening to his show. You can’t say that about every host.”

Charly Butcher
According to WPTA-TV21, the unique thing about Wilson is that he will not take any earnings for filling in and all of the money he would have made will be donated to “Penny Pitch,” the local non-for-profit at WOWO.

The kind gesture is something folks at WOWO have had a hard time believing, according to Kayla Blakeslee, the program director at WOWO.  “I almost cried and I’m not a crier so when he said that I was very moved and very touched. But it goes back to Mike. I know that he loves WOWO, he loves Fort Wayne, he loved Charly Butcher.”

When asked why Wilson planned to donate all the money he said it all goes back to Charly and added, “He would call me regularly.Hey I got another idea for “Penny Pitch!” Hey do you wanna do this with “Penny Pitch” this year? It was a huge deal for Charly, so I thought what could be better than donating whatever I would make to “Penny Pitch” and to be able to carry that out.”

“Penny Pitch” has raised countless of funds.  Last year they presented a check to Shepherd’s House for over $200,000.

SiriusXM's Automatic Acquires Mobile Pay Platform PayTollo

Automatic, a unit of SiriusXM, has announced the acquisition of PayTollo, a mobile payment platform for toll roads and bridges that gives both drivers and Toll Authorities a streamlined payment option.

PayTollo's GPS Toll Recognition Technology algorithm and user interface delivers the ability to notify, verify and charge a user for toll crossings. PayTollo is currently an accepted payment option for tolls in Florida and California.

"The acquisition of PayTollo is exciting for Automatic as we continue to expand our consumer convenience and safety offerings," said SiriusXM EVP/GM, Emerging Business Joe Verbrugge.

"PayTollo provides a convenient service for drivers and authorities alike. We believe it will fit nicely within the Automatic platform as we add new features and services for our customers."

"PayTollo is thrilled to be under the Automatic umbrella," said Abenezer Yohalashet, the former CEO of PayTollo and Director, Head of Tolling for Automatic. "The synergy between connected vehicle services and toll payment are considerable and together, SiriusXM, Automatic and PayTollo will accelerate the growth of our platform and enable us to more quickly offer tolling solutions to drivers across the country."

Automatic says that PayTollo complements its consumer convenience and safety services. With Automatic's install-it-yourself adapter and mobile application, most vehicles model year 1996 or later can be converted into connected vehicles, giving drivers access to services like Crash Alert, roadside assistance, real-time vehicle location monitoring and sharing, vehicle health and performance monitoring, recall notifications and service reminders, and now tolling.

Hartford Radio: WTIC Adds St. Joseph's Hoops

Entercom and the University of Saint Joseph in Connecticut have reached a broadcast agreement.

As part of the agreement, News Talk WTIC 1080 AM in Hartford, CT will broadcast home games of the university’s men’s basketball team’s inaugural season. The partnership will run through the 2018-19 collegiate season.

“We are very excited to partner with the University of Saint Joseph and their newly-announced men's basketball program,” said Stephanie Perl, Senior Vice President and Market Manager, Entercom Hartford. “This partnership is an excellent opportunity to expand our sports offerings to our listeners on 1080 WTIC while complementing our already strong sports programming.”

As part of the partnership, Joe D’Ambrosio, co-host of 1080 WTIC News Talk’s morning show “Mornings with Ryan Dunaway,” will provide play-by-play commentary of the games. Coverage begins with the team’s opening game against William Paterson University on November 9 at 7:30 p.m. ET.

Listeners can tune in to 1080 WTIC News Talk (WTIC-AM) in Hartford on-air, as well as nationwide on app. Fans can also connect with the station on social media via Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Lindsey Buckingham Sues Fleetwood Mac

Lindsey Buckingham
Lindsey Buckingham has filed a lawsuit against Fleetwood Mac for breach of fiduciary duty, breach of oral contract and intentional interference with prospective economic advantage, among other charges, according to legal documents obtained by Rolling Stone.

The group parted ways with Buckingham in January and replaced him with Heartbreakers guitarist Mike Campbell and Neil Finn of Crowded House. The lawsuit, filed Tuesday in Los Angeles Superior Court, states that he asked the group to postpone their tour three months so he could play shows with his solo band. He says plans were in place for the Rumours-era lineup to play 60 shows across North America when he was let go without warning.

“This action is necessary to enforce Buckingham’s right to share in the economic opportunities he is entitled to as a member of the partnership created to operate the business of Fleetwood Mac,” the complaint states.

The complaint offers a detailed look at the buildup to Buckingham’s departure from the band, going back to late 2017 when the group began plotting a 2018/19 world tour. It claims that Stevie Nicks, Mick Fleetwood, John McVie and Christine McVie wanted it to begin in August of this year, but Buckingham wanted it to start in November so he could tour behind his new solo release. When the others refused to delay the plans, the suit claims, he reluctantly agreed to postpone his album for a year to accommodate their wishes.

The suit alleges that a deal was made with Live Nation that would earn each member of the group an estimated $12 million to $14 million for 60 concerts.

The complaint also states that “there has never been a written agreement among Christine McVie, John McVie, Buckingham, Fleetwood and Nicks,” but California’s Uniform Partnership Act of 1994 says that “absent a written partnership agreement, no partner in Fleetwood Mac may be terminated from the Partnership without cause.”