Saturday, January 30, 2021

January 31 Radio History

➦In 1892...comedian Eddie Cantor was born Edward Israel Iskowitz in New York City.  The man known for his “banjo eyes” and his five daughters was the first of the great vaudevillians to hit it big on radio, after an appearance on the Rudy Vallee Show in early 1931.  In 1950 he jumped into TV & was an instant hit in the new medium.  But he never fully recovered from a heart attack two years later, and died Oct 10, 1964 at age 72.

Cantor was regarded almost as a family member by millions because his top-rated radio shows revealed intimate stories and amusing anecdotes about his wife Ida and five daughters. Some of his hits include "Makin' Whoopee", "Ida", "If You Knew Susie", "Ma! He's Makin' Eyes at Me", "Baby", "Margie", and "How Ya Gonna Keep 'em Down on the Farm (After They've Seen Paree)?" He also wrote a few songs, including "Merrily We Roll Along", the Merrie Melodies Warner Bros. cartoon theme.

His eye-rolling song-and-dance routines eventually led to his nickname, "Banjo Eyes". In 1933, artist Frederick J. Garner caricatured Cantor with large round eyes resembling the drum-like pot of a banjo. Cantor's eyes became his trademark, often exaggerated in illustrations, and leading to his appearance on Broadway in the musical Banjo Eyes (1941).

➦In 1902...acclaimed actress Tallulah Bankhead was born in Huntsville Alabama. Her most important broadcast credit was as hostess of NBC Radio’s last hurrah, the star-studded “The Big Show” Sunday night variety extravaganza as the tidal wave of TV was taking effect.

➦In 1915..Radio-TV broadcaster Garry Moore was born Thomas Garrison Morfit in Baltimore. Moore (January 31, 1915 – November 28, 1993) was an American entertainer, comedic personality, game show host, and humorist best known for his work in television. He began a long career with the CBS network on radio in the 1940s and was a television host on several variety and game shows from the 1950s through the 1970s.

After dropping out of high school, Moore found success as a radio host and then moved on to the medium of television. He hosted several daytime and prime time programs titled The Garry Moore Show, and the game shows I've Got a Secret and To Tell the Truth. He was instrumental in furthering the career of comedic actress Carol Burnett. He became known for his bow ties and his crew cut fashion early in his career.

After being diagnosed with throat cancer in 1976, Moore retired from the broadcasting industry, only making a few rare television appearances. He spent the last years of his life in Hilton Head, South Carolina and at his summer home in Northeast Harbor in Maine. He died on November 28, 1993 at the age of 78.

Starting in 1937, he worked for Baltimore radio station WBAL as an announcer, writer and actor/comedian. He used his birth name until 1940, when, while on the air announcing Club Matinee hosted by Ransom Sherman at NBC, Chicago, Sherman held a radio contest to find a more easily pronounceable one. "Garry Moore" was the winning entry, which was submitted by a woman from Pittsburgh who received a prize of $100.

It was on Club Matinee where he met his long-time friend and broadcasting partner Durward Kirby.

Moore headed Talent, Ltd., a variety program on Sunday afternoons in 1941. In the years that followed, Moore appeared on numerous network radio shows. He started out as an announcer and then as support for broadcast personalities, one of whom was Jimmy Durante.

From 1943-47, Durante and Moore had a joint show with Moore as the straight man. Impressed with his ability to interact with audiences, CBS offered him his own show. Starting in 1949, the one-hour daytime variety show The Garry Moore Show aired on CBS. Moore briefly returned to radio as host of NBC's Monitor in 1969.

He died of emphysema Nov 28, 1993 at age 78.

➦In 1936...The Green Hornet“ was introduced by its famous theme song, “The Flight of the Bumble Bee”. The George W. Trendle radio production was first heard on WXYZ radio in Detroit, the same radio station where “The Lone Ranger” had originated 3 years previous.  The title character in “The Green Hornet” was really named Britt Reid, and was supposedly the great nephew of John Reid, the Lone Ranger. The Hornet stayed on the air for 16 years.

Beginning on April 12, 1938, the station supplied the series to the Mutual Broadcasting System radio network, and then to NBC Blue and its successors, the Blue Network and ABC, from November 16, 1939, through September 8, 1950. It returned from September 10 to December 5, 1952.

Major Armstrong
➦In 1954...Major Edwin Armstrong - founder of FM radio - died at age 63, an apparent suicide.

He has been called "the most prolific and influential inventor in radio history".  He invented the regenerative circuit while he was an undergraduate and patented it in 1914, followed by the super-regenerative circuit in 1922, and the superheterodyne receiver in 1918. Armstrong was also the inventor of modern frequency modulation (FM) radio transmission.

Armstrong was born in New York City in 1890. He studied at Columbia University.  During his third year at Columbia, Armstrong came up with his first major invention: the first radio amplifier. He had learned how Lee DeForest's radio tube worked, then he redesigned it by taking the electromagnetic waves that came from a radio transmission and repeatedly feeding the signal back through the tube. Each time, the signal's power would increase as much as 20,000 times a second.

This phenomenon, which Armstrong called "regeneration," was an extremely important discovery in the early days of radio. With this development, radio engineers no longer needed 20-ton generators to get their stations on the air. Armstrong's single-circuit design provided the key to the continuous-wave transmitter that is at the core of radio operations today. He graduated with his B.S. in engineering in 1913. He patented his creation and licensed it to the Marconi corporation, in 1914.

Soon after graduation, Armstrong was sent to Paris to serve in World War I. There he came up with his second major invention, the superheterodyne receiver, after he had been put on a project to improve ability to intercept shortwave enemy communications. The superheterodyne receiver is still part of virtually every tuner in today's radios, televisions and radars.

In 1920, Westinghouse bought Armstrong's patent for the superheterodyne receiver, and started up the nation's first radio station, KDKA, in Pittsburgh.

Radio became very popular at about this time, and more and more stations came to the airwaves. The Radio Corporation of America, or RCA soon bought up all of Westinghouse's radio patents, as well as the patents of other competitors.

By then, Armstrong was back at Columbia University working as a professor. In 1923 he married Marion MacInnes, secretary to the president of RCA, David Sarnoff. Later that decade he became embroiled in a corporate war for control of radio patents. This continued through the early part of the 1930s, and Armstrong was unsuccessful in most of his court battles. Meanwhile, however, he pursued a solution to the problem of static in radio. By the late 1920's he had decided the only solution was to design an entirely new system. In 1933 he presented the wide-band frequency modulation (FM) system, which gave clear reception even in storms and offered the highest fidelity sound yet heard in radio. The system also allowed for a single carrier wave to transmit two radio programs at once. This development was called "multiplexing."

In 1940 Armstrong got a permit for the first FM station, which he established in Alpine, New Jersey. In 1941 the Franklin Institute awarded Armstrong the Franklin Medal, one of the science community's highest honors.

Armstrong went on to prove that FM was capable of dual-channel transmissions, allowing for stereo sound. This capability of FM could also be used to send two separate non-stereo programs, or a facsimile and telegraph message simultaneously in a process called multiplexing. He even successfully bounced a FM signal off the moon, something not possible with AM signals.

According to, AM radio was big business in the pre-television days, and there were powerful people who wanted things to stay as they were. Innovation only meant smaller profits for them. At that time there was no more influential man in radio media than the founder of RCA, David Sarnoff. Known as "The General," Sarnoff controlled all the technical aspects of radio; he also created the NBC and ABC television networks. He was also an important early supporter of television and developed the current NTSC standard for TV that we have used for over 60 years.

Regenerative Circuit 1912
Seeking to kill FM radio before it could threaten his profits, Sarnoff's company successfully lobbied the FCC to have the FM spectrum moved from Armstrong’s frequencies to the ones we use today: 88 to 108 MHz. The FCC ruling said that the 40 MHz band was to be used for the new television broadcasts, in which RCA had a heavy stake. RCA also had an ally in AT&T, which actively supported the frequency move because the loss of FM relaying stations forced Armstrong's Yankee Network stations to buy wired links from AT&T. The deck was stacked against the future of FM broadcasting.

Matters became worse when Armstrong became entangled in a new patent suit with RCA and NBC, who were using FM technology without paying royalties. The cost of the new legal battle compounded the financial burden that the problems with the Yankee Network had caused. His health and temperament deteriorated as the FM lawsuit dominated his life. His wife of thirty-one years, unable to cope with his worsening personality and financial strain, left him in November of 1953. RCA's greater financial resources crushed Armstrong's legal defences, and he was left penniless, alone, and distraught.

On February 1, 1954, Armstrong's body was discovered on the roof of a three-story wing of his apartment building. In despair, he had thrown himself out the window of his thirteenth-floor New York City apartment sometime during the night. He died believing he was a failure, and that FM radio would never become accepted.

Through the years Armstrong’s widow would bring twenty-one patent infringement suits against many companies, including RCA. She eventually won a little over $10 million in damages. But it would take further decades for FM radio to reach its potential.

Following Armstrong’s death, television’s emerging popularity ended radio’s golden years. Slowly, listeners learned that FM radio was clearly better for musical high fidelity than AM broadcasts.

Radios started to have an FM band included with the AM band in the late 1950s and 1960s. By the 1970s, FM audience size surpassed that of AM, and the gap has been growing ever since.

He held 42 patents and received numerous awards, including the first Institute of Radio Engineers now IEEE Medal of Honor, the French Legion of Honor, the 1941 Franklin Medal and the 1942 Edison Medal. He is a member of the National Inventors Hall.

This is an audio recording of the March 6, 1954 final broadcast of Major Edwin Armstrong's experimental FM station at Alpine, NJ. This broadcast came a month after the inventor of FM radio jumped to his death.

The audio track is accompanied by historical photos and footage

In 1968...The Tet Offensive began in So.Vietnam and 9 military broadcasters were attacked in their quarters in Hue. They held out for 5 days until a final assault set the building afire and they fled. Three were killed, 5 became POWs for 5 years. Only one escaped. This is the aftermath. Photo from AFVNVETS.NET.

➦In 1992...Radio/TV Sportscaster Howard Cosell retired from his ABC Radio duties at age 73.  He would pass away little more than 3 years later.

➦In 2000...73-year-old Peter Tripp, who wowed radio audiences with his mid-1950s Top-40 countdown record shows on WHB in Kansas City, and later at New York City's WMGM 1050 AM, died January 31, 2000, at Northridge California Hospital, following an apparent stroke suffered at his home in West Hills, California.

Billing himself as "The curly-headed kid in the third row", he became one of the nation's best known Top40 countdown personalities beginning in 1954 at Todd Storz' WHB in Kansas City, and at Loew's Theatres' WMGM in New York City from 1955 through 1960 with his "Your Hits Of The Week" program.

➦In 2013… Lee Rodgers, a conservative talk-radio host who was a constant on San Francisco airwaves for almost three decades, died at age 75.  He had been undergoing experimental heart surgery at the time.  In the early 1990’s, between Bay area assignments, he spent a year as talk show host at Seattle’s KIRO Radio.

Lee Rodgers
He was born and raised in poverty near Memphis, Tennessee, lost part of a leg at age 13 working in timber industry. He began his broadcasting career at WIND in 1963 as a disc jockey and sportscaster, followed by stints with radio stations in St. Louis, Miami and Chicago.

After 10 years with KGO San Francisco, Rodgers went north to Seattle's KIRO radio. One year later, he returned to the Bay Area where "the most interesting and spirited dialogue in talk radio takes place."

➦In 2014…San Francisco radio veteran Chris Edwards died after an extended illness at age 72. 

Chris Edwards
He had started in Bay Area radio in 1968 with the morning show at the original KYA-AM, a highly rated Top 40 station. Later, he hosted KYA afternoons from 2 to 6. In the 1980s, he hosted the “Chris Edwards Solid Gold Time Machine,” Sunday nights from 6 to 10, at K-101 where he was a sales executive.

Born Edward Christian Reinholtz on Nov. 10, 1941 in Mount Vernon, New York. He loved radio from a young age, earning an amateur ham radio license as a teenager, and hosted his first radio show, "Moonglow with Edwards," on WRUF at the University of Florida. It was there that he took the on-air name Chris Edwards, which combined his middle and first names.

Edwards moved to KSFO-AM/KYA-FM as an account executive, also hosting a Saturday morning show until the end of 1991. For the next 20 years, he worked in sales at radio stations including KFRC, KABL and KKSF. He retired from KGO/KSFO in the summer of 2011.

  • Mini Diver is 51
    Composer Philip Glass is 84. 
  • Actor Stuart Margolin (“The Rockford Files”) is 81. 
  • Actor Jessica Walter (“Arrested Development”) is 80. 
  • Bluesman Charlie Musselwhite is 77. 
  • Actor Jonathan Banks (“Better Call Saul,” ″Breaking Bad”) is 74. 
  • Actor Glynn Turman (“The Wire,” ″A Different World”) is 74. 
  • Singer Harry Wayne Casey of KC and the Sunshine Band is 70. 
  • Singer John Lydon (Johnny Rotten) of the Sex Pistols is 65. 
  • Actor Anthony LaPaglia (“Without a Trace,” ″Murder One”) is 62. 
  • Actor Kelly Lynch is 62. 
  • Singer-guitarist Lloyd Cole is 60. 
  • Actor Paulette Braxton (“The Parkers,” ″In The House”) is 56. 
  • Bassist Al Jaworski of Jesus Jones is 55. 
  • Actor Minnie Driver is 51. 
  • Actor Portia de Rossi (“Arrested Development,” ″Ally McBeal”) is 48. 
  • Comedian Bobby Moynihan (“Saturday Night Live”) is 44. 
  • Actor Kerry Washington (“Scandal,” ″Ray”) is 44. 
  • Singer Justin Timberlake is 40. 
  • Actor Tyler Ritter (“The McCarthys”) is 36. 
  • Singer Tyler Hubbard of Florida Georgia Line is 34. 
  • Singer Marcus Mumford of Mumford and Sons is 34. 
  • Actor Joel Courtney (“Super 8,” “The Kissing Booth”) is 25.

Philly Radio: Ex-WPEN Morning Host Marc Farzetta Has New Show

Two months after being let go as morning drive host at WPEN 97.5 The Fanatic, Marc Farzetta has resurfaced with the launch of a new daily morning show to be broadcast exclusively on social media.

the Philadelphia Business Journal reports “The Farzy Show with Marc Farzetta” will begin Feb. 1 and air weekdays on platforms including YouTube, Twitch, Facebook, and Twitter. Immediately following the broadcast, the show will be available on all podcast platforms and for on-demand viewing on a website.

Farzetta describes the show as bringing together a feel of traditional radio and TV and delivered for the new age medium of digital media and podcasting. He will be joined by a different guest every morning, including a reoccurring weekly segment with former Philadelphia Eagle Hugh Douglas.

“I’m beyond excited to be a part of people’s mornings again,” Farzetta said in a statement. “And thrilled to keep the dream going of starting every morning with the greatest sports fans in the country... My intention is to bring listeners their favorite players of both the past and present in addition to some of the biggest and best names covering sports."

Farzetta new program comes after he was replaced at The Fanatic by John Kincade. He joined the station in August 2018 from rival Sportsradio 94 WIP.  Farzetta’s co-host was former Eagles All-Pro offensive tackle Tra Thomas.

Thomas was let go last spring as part of Covid-19-related cutbacks from parent company Beasley Media Group. Farzetta soldiered on with colleagues Jamie Lynch and Bob Cooney. While there was some improvement from predecessor Anthony Gargano, he failed to put a dent in Cataldi’s ratings armor.

Farzetta has been in the radio business for 15 years, joining WIP in 2005 and worked his way up the ladder from on-air contributor, producer, update anchor and host. On the television side, he worked behind the scenes on NBC’s “Sunday Night Football” for more than a decade and most recently as host of The 700 Level Show, the off-beat television spinoff of the website NBC Sports Philadelphia acquired several years ago.

Baltimore Radio: Coleman and Conn Swap Shifts At The Fan

Jerry Coleman and Jeremy Conn

Entercom announces an updated weekday programming lineup for Sports WJZ 105.7 The Fan.

As part of the updates, Jerry Coleman, co-host of the station’s “Big Bad Morning Show,” will transition to host “Sports with Coleman,” weekday evenings from 6:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. ET. Subsequently, evening host Jeremy Conn will now serve as morning show co-host and be heard on “Big Bad Morning Show” alongside Rob Long and Ed Norris weekdays from 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. ET. Both changes are effective February 8.

“With his vast knowledge of sports and his connections to the sports world, Jerry Coleman was born to host his own show,” said Tracy Brandys, Senior Vice President and Market Manager, Entercom Baltimore. “Jeremy Conn will bring his unique brand of humor, his extensive gambling knowledge, and his signature bits to morning drive. We appreciate both Jerry and Jeremy’s hard work and dedication to 105.7 The Fan and are excited to have two Baltimore natives serve as bookends for our impressive weekday lineup.”

“Switching from the mornings to the evening will allow me to bring back ‘Sports with Coleman’ and grow my brand,” said Coleman. “I'm grateful to Entercom for this opportunity.”

Jerry Coleman has served as morning show co-host since 2017. He will also continue to provide 105.7 The Fan’s “Fan Flashes” throughout the day.

“I am unbelievably excited and humbled to join the ‘Big Bad Morning Show,’ said Conn. “I am also nervous to work with two former cops, considering my shady background - thank goodness for the statute of limitations. Ed [Norris], Rob [Long], producer Joe LaCroix and myself will have fun and I am confident Baltimore will laugh their way to work each morning."

Jeremy Conn has been with the station since 2006 and has served as evening show host since 2019. He recently led the station’s “Big Mo Show,” which honored the late Baltimore super fan, Mo Gaba.

Listeners can tune in to 105.7 The Fan (WJZ-FM) in Baltimore on air, as well as nationwide on the RADIO.COM app and website. Fans can also connect with the station on social media via Twitter and Facebook.

Judge Orders Station Owner To Surrender To U-S Marshalls

Royce Broadcasting owner Ed Stolz was ordered Thursday by a U.S. District Court judge to surrender to U.S. Marshalls in Riverside, CA on Tuesday Feb. 2 at noon, reports InsideRadio.

Stolz has been held in contempt of court for failing to respect prior orders from Judge Jesus Bernal. In addition, court appointed receiver Larry Patrick recently filed a motion asking the court to punish Stolz for interfering with both the operation of the three FM stations and the FCC approval process of a pending $6 million deal to sell the stations to VCY America, a non-profit religious broadcaster.

Patrick alleges Stolz has not turned over any banking records, account numbers or other financial documents relating to the operation of the stations, has refused to turn over the FCC user ID numbers and passwords necessary to file the paperwork to sell the stations, has not provided control of the station websites, intentionally lied about the owner of a tower, and even refused to hand over studio keys.

The court appointed Patrick to serve as receiver of the stations last July, charging him with overseeing CHRs KREV 92.7 The Revolution in San Francisco,  KFRH 104.3 Now in Las Vegas, and  KRCK Hot Hits 97.7 in Palm Springs, CA while he initiated a sale process.  The naming of Patrick and assignment of the stations’ license to him came after the stations failed to pay ASCAP license fees “over several years” and continued to broadcast songs written and published by the group’s members without permission.

Faced with the loss of ownership of the three stations, Stolz engaged in a series of actions that obstructed Patrick from gaining full control, and moving forward with their sale.

Sacramento Radio: KSEG Morning Host Charlie Thomas To Sign-Off

Charlie Thomas
Longtime Classic Rock KSEG 96.9 The Eagle on-air veteran and current morning show host Charlie Thomas has announced his retirement. Attached please find a couple photos of Charlie. Below please find thoughts from Charlie to staff, as well as from SVP, Market Manager Stacey Kauffman.

“There is simply no way to properly acknowledge thirty-six years of dedication and success on one station…the last twenty-three of which Charlie Thomas has given to Entercom Sacramento,” said Stacey Kauffman, Senior Vice President and Market Manager, Entercom Sacramento. 

"In his well-deserved retirement, he leaves behind a truly indelible mark, not only on this company and our industry as a whole, but most importantly on the people of Sacramento. He is so much more than a top-tier broadcaster – he is a top-tier human being. He has a true gift for making that special connection with his audience and will be remembered fondly by all who were fortunate enough to experience that connection first-hand.”

Thomas stated, "When I moved to Sacramento 36 years ago, I thought it was a stepping stone to the “Big Time.” Didn’t take long to realize it would become my home. I’m proud to have become a part of this community…served up a rockin’ soundtrack for its residents and in some measure helped to provide a voice for them.

"Radio is about one-to-one connection, and that mission continues, though the tools have changed. When I started, we were cueing up vinyl records on turntables, and editing tape with razor blades on reel-to-reel decks…where’s my grease pencil??

"It’s been quite a journey, staying in the same place. I’ve met a number of incredible and talented people along the way – too many to mention, and thank…and a *few* weasels as well! Definitely want to give props to my Eagle folks and my fellow staff in the early days of 93 Rock. It’s been a privilege to work beside you and a pleasure to be with Entercom these last 23 years.

"As I hang up the headphones, I look forward to exploring more of the world outside the studio walls, and listening to 96.9 The Eagle as a civilian now. Oh, and I WILL be sleeping past dark-thirty every day."

Spotify Believes It Can Tell If You're Sad or Glad

Spotify, the music streaming service was finally granted a patent — nearly three years after submitting plans — for an algorithm that can better predict what users want to hear — by listening-in on their conversations.

The NY Post reports the artificial intelligence technology will predict users’ “emotional state, gender, age, or accent” by tuning-in on music listeners’ conversations.

The patent for “Identification of taste attributes from an audio signal,” as the invention is called, was filed in February 2018, and granted on January 12 of this year, Music Business Worldwide reported.

Spotify suggests that analyzing “intonation, stress, rhythm and the likes of units of speech” could help predict whether users are “happy, angry, sad or neutral.”

The company thinks their customers will appreciate the passive prediction tool — as opposed to “tediously input[ting] answers to multiple queries in order for the system to identify the user’s taste,” Spotify wrote in their patent application.

The information gathered would effectively be no different than what Spotify can access already about their users, such as their music library, their friends’ libraries and current location.

“It is common for a media streaming application to include features that provide personalized media recommendations to a user,” Spotify claims, according to the patent filing.

Similar tools are being developed and applied to all sorts of industries and services. In 2017, artificial intelligence was able to identify whether or not a person was suicidal — with 94% accuracy — based on how their brain reacted to certain trigger words.

R.I.P. John Randy Ross, Midwest Communications VP/MM Knoxville

John Randy
John Randall (Randy) Ross, Vice Press/General Manager for Midwest Communications in Knoxville died unexpectedly Tuesday. He was 56.

Randy began his 38 year career in the radio business in 1983, after years of practicing doing play by play. His first job was as "Sanitation Engineer" with WGOW/KZ106 in Chattanooga, Tennessee, Randy later progressed to traffic reporter, sideline reporter and became a member of the KZ106 Morning Zoo Crew (1986), along with other on-air responsibilities, followed by a sales position first with WGOW/KZ106 (1990) later in 1996 he joined the Jacobus Agency. 

He joined US101 (1997) as local Sales Manager then General Sales Manager. In 1999 he moved to Johnson City, TN and became Sales Manager at WQUT. 

In 2001 Randy moved to Knoxville, TN as Sales Director for WIMZ(103.5) and WJXB (B97.5). 

In 2014 Randy was promoted to Vice President and General Manager for Midwest Communications in the Knoxville, TN market, leading WIMZ, WJXB, WDKW (95.7 Duke FM) and WNFZ (94.3 Jack FM).

R.I.P.: Mitchell Krauss, Former CBS News Correspondent

Mitchell Krauss
Mitchell Krauss, a Middle East correspondent for CBS News who was wounded in the 1981 assassination of Egyptian President Anwar Sadat, died on January 27 at Northern Dutchess Hospital in New York, near his home in Rhinebeck. He was 90 and died from kidney failure, reports

Krauss was the correspondent and the bureau chief in Cairo during a 25-year career at CBS News. On October 6, 1981, he was covering a military parade and was near enough to the Egyptian leader to suffer a shrapnel wound to his leg in the grenade and automatic weapons attack that killed Sadat.

One of only a few reporters on the scene, he was able to file an audio report that was broadcast later as part of a CBS Special Report on the assassination. Krauss then managed to get on a flight to Rome with the CBS videotape of the event before the Cairo airport was shut down.

Krauss served as a CBS news correspondent on television and radio from 1972 to 1997.  In the 1990s, he appeared mostly on radio, anchoring hourly national news reports and the daily CBS World News Roundup.

Krauss joined CBS News from Channel 13, the PBS station in New York, where he was a news correspondent and the host of the late-evening Newsfront, America’s first non-commercial, live daily news program, syndicated on several PBS stations.

Before that, he could be heard internationally on Radio New York Worldwide. In the 1950s, he began his career in news broadcasting in local radio in New York at WQXR, and then in Philadelphia at WFLN and WIP.

R.I.P.: Hilton Valentine, Guitarist, Founding Member Of The Animals

Hilton Valentine  (May 21, 1943 - January 29, 2021)

Guitarist Hilton Valentine, a founding member of the legendary British group The Animals, died Friday morning.

His death was revealed by his wife, according to a statement from the record company Abkco. The cause of death was not disclosed. reports the 77-year-old Valentine Valentine was born in North Shields, Northumberland, England. He was a founding member of The Animals, one of the bands that led the British Invasion of rock music in the 1960s.

He created one of the most recognizable guitar riffs in rock music history with his intro on "The House of the Rising Sun," which hit No. 1 in 1964 in the U.K., U.S. and Canada, and is recognized among Rolling Stone’s Greatest Songs of All Time.

Valentine’s other hits with The Animals include “Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood,” “It’s My Life” and “We Gotta Get Out of This Place,” which struck a chord with American soldiers during the Vietnam War.

Upon their induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994, Dave Pirner of Soul Asylum described The Animals essential standing as a “key link in the evolving transition from black R&B to punk rock.”

“We at Abkco have been privileged to serve as stewards of The Animals catalog and his passing is felt in a truly profound way by the entire Abkco family,” the record company statement said.

January 30 Radio History

➦In 1882...the future 32nd US president Franklin Delano Roosevelt was born at Hyde Park NY.  Not only was he the only President elected 4 times, he was the first to use broadcasting (radio) to effectively communicate with his constituency (Fireside Chats)

➦In 1918...David Opatoshu (January 30, 1918 – April 30, 1996) was born in New York City.  His father was the Yiddish writer Joseph Opatoshu.  He delivered the evening news in Yiddish on New York radio during the World War II years on WEVD.   In a span of 40 years guesting on TV he appeared repeatedly in Philco Playhouse, Studio One, Dr. Kildare, The FBI & Medical Center.  He died April 30 1996 at age 78

➦In 1927...WADO 1280 AM in NYC signed on as WGL.

This station was owned by the International Broadcasting Corporation. WGL president Colonel Lewis Landes stated on the inaugural broadcast, "The International Broadcasting Corporation's aim is to adhere to truth, to be free of partisanship, religious or political."

WGL was the first station to protest the frequency allocations of the Federal Radio Commission in May 1927. WGL was authorized to move to 1170 AM, but wanted to go to 720, occupied by WOR. When WOR was awarded the 710 frequency, both stations went to court, with WOR eventually winning the case. Finally in June 1927, WGL moved to 1020 AM and shared time with Paterson station, WODA.

In August 1927, studio manager Charles Isaacson announced one of the city's first attempts at local news coverage. WGL was organizing listeners to volunteer as radio reporters and call the station with breaking news stories.

On September 16, 1928, WGL changed calls to WOV and was sold to Sicilian-born importer John Iraci. The WGL call sign was then picked up by a Fort Wayne station, which uses them to this very day.

WOV's initial programming was aimed at a general audience, but by the mid-1930s, it strengthened its ethnic ties and expanded its Italian-language programming to fill the daytime hours. WOV soon became the dominant Italian voice in the Northeast through its affiliation with share-time station WBIL and Iraci's WPEN in Philadelphia.

The station was owned by WOV Broadcasting until 1959, when it was sold to Bartel Broadcasters, at which time the station was renamed WADO. During the day, WADO broadcast R&B music. At night, they ran Italian programming. By 1962, some Spanish programming was run on weekends. By 1963, the only English programming found on WADO was in Sunday religious broadcasts.

In 1964, WADO began broadcasting completely in Spanish from 5 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Italian from 8 p.m. to Midnight. Overnight, Asian programming was run. By 1970, Spanish had replaced the Asian format.

➦In 1933..."The Lone Ranger" was first heard on WXYZ radio in Detroit. The radio show conceived either by WXYZ (Detroit) radio station owner George W. Trendle or by Fran Striker,  the show's writer.

The radio series proved to be a hit and spawned a series of books (largely written by Striker), an equally popular television show that ran from 1949 to 1957, comic books, and several movies.

The title character was played on the radio show by George Seaton, Earle Graser, and Brace Beemer. Clayton Moore portrayed the Lone Ranger on television, although during a contract dispute, Moore was replaced temporarily by John Hart, who wore a different style of mask. On the radio, Tonto was played by, among others, John Todd and Roland Parker; and in the television series, by Jay Silverheels, who was a Mohawk from the Six Nations Indian Reserve in Ontario, Canada.

The show was picked up by the Mutual Broadcasting System radio network, and on May 2, 1942 by NBC's Blue Network, which soon became ABC. The last new episode was broadcast September 3, 1954. Recorded repeats of the 1952–53 episodes continued to be aired on ABC until June 24, 1955. George Seaton was the first voice of the Lone Ranger. Jack Deeds and Earle Graser followed in the role.

However, it was Brace Beemer who is best remembered as former Texas Ranger, John Reid. On radio he played the part of the black-masked Ranger, fighting for frontier justice, for thirteen consecutive years.  The program ran for 2,956 episodes and finished in 1955.

➦In 1969...Their rooftop concert was the final public performance of the English rock band The Beatles. The band, with keyboardist Billy Preston, surprised a central London office and fashion district with an impromptu concert from the roof of the headquarters of the band's multimedia corporation Apple Corps at 3 Savile Row. In a 42-minute set, the Beatles played nine takes of five songs before the Metropolitan Police asked them to reduce the volume.

The set was performed in the following order:

"Get Back" (take one)
"Get Back" (take two)
"Don't Let Me Down" (take one)
"I've Got a Feeling" (take one)
"One After 909"
"Dig a Pony"
"I've Got a Feeling" (take two)
"Don't Let Me Down" (take two)
"Get Back" (take three)

Footage from the performance was used in the 1970 documentary film Let It Be.

➦In 1978... the Mutual Radio network began airing the Larry King Show from midnight to 5:30 am Eastern time.  The first weeks of the talk show originated in Miami, before Larry relocated to Washington DC.

➦In 1999...announcer Ed Herlihy died at age 89.  He is best remembered as the voice of Universal-International Newsreels, and  a staff announcer for NBC Radio & Television.  He was the commercial voice of Kraft Foods from 1947 through the early 1980’s.

In his early successes, few could recall his name or know what he looked like. But to moviegoers who saw the Universal newsreels in the 1940's, his was one of the voices that told of the Allies' early setbacks against the Axis powers, then of the successes that led to victory in 1945. His two principal competitors were his fellow announcer Harry Von Zell of Warner Pathe and the radio commentator Lowell Thomas of Fox Movietone News.

Ed Herlihy 1959
In 1947 Herlihy started his association with Kraft Foods on radio and continued it when the company sponsored the ''Kraft Television Theater'' on television in the 1950's. A dramatic offering, all of it done live, the show featured everything from Shakespeare to Rod Serling; it was at the center of what critics would come to call television's Golden Age.

During commercials for Kraft products (''Good food and good food ideas,'' Mr. Herlihy would say), audiences heard only his voice, a voice he said he tried to make sound friendly. It was an avuncular, next-door-neighbor, deep, mellow kind of voice, a digestive guide through the preparation of all manner of souffles, dips, marshmallow salads and fondues.

Educated at Boston College, graduating in 1932, he gained his first radio job in his home town, at Boston's WLOE. When he was hired by NBC in 1935, he decamped for New York, along with his friend, fellow Boston announcer Frank Gallop, who was hired by CBS. In their early days as network announcers, Herlihy and Gallop shared an apartment on West 45th Street. Herlihy was immediately successful in network radio, at that time in its sharpest ascendancy.

Herlihy's voice was also heard announcing myriad radio shows in the 1930's and 40's. Among them were ''America's Town Meeting,'' a public affairs program; ''The Big Show,'' with Tallulah Bankhead; ''The Falcon'' and ''Mr. District Attorney,'' both crime dramas, and ''Just Plain Bill,'' a soap opera about a small-town barber. Mr. Herlihy was also the master of ceremonies for radio's ''Horn & Hardart Children's Hour'' in 1948. He continued with the show on television.

In addition to his work for Kraft, Mr. Herlihy's early television credits included Sid Caesar's ''Show of Shows,'' ''As the World Turns'' and ''All My Children.'' When he worked for Mr. Caesar, he met Woody Allen, then a fledgling writer. Mr. Allen was so impressed with Mr. Herlihy's voice that he used him in some of his films in the 1980's, including ''Hannah and Her Sisters,'' ''Radio Days'' and ''Zelig.'' His other film credits included Martin Scorsese's ''King of Comedy'' and ''Pee-wee's Big Adventure.''

He was also the host of Recollections At 30, which was a special NBC Radio series created for the network's 30th birthday.

  • Danielle Campbell is 26
    Actor Gene Hackman is 91. 
  • Actor Vanessa Redgrave is 84. 
  • Country singer Jeanne Pruett is 84. 
  • Country singer Norma Jean is 83. 
  • Horn player William King of The Commodores is 72. 
  • Musician Phil Collins is 70. 
  • Actor Charles S. Dutton (“Roc”) is 70. 
  • Actor Ann Dowd (“The Handmaid’s Tale”) is 65. 
  • Comedian Brett Butler (“Anger Management,” ″Grace Under Fire”) is 63. 
  • Singer Jody Watley is 62. 
  • Actor Wayne Wilderson (“Veep”) is 55. 
  • Country singer Tammy Cochran is 49. 
  • Actor Christian Bale is 47. 
  • Guitarist Carl Broemel of My Morning Jacket is 47. 
  • Actor Olivia Colman (“The Night Manager”) is 47. 
  • Singer Josh Kelley is 41. 
  • Actor Wilmer Valderrama (“That ’70s Show”) is 41. 
  • Actor Mary Hollis Inboden (“The Real O’Neals”) is 35. 
  • Actor Kylie Bunbury (“Pitch”) is 32. 
  • Actor Jake Thomas (“Lizzie McGuire,” ″AI”) is 31. 
  • Actor Danielle Campbell (“The Originals”) is 26.

Friday, January 29, 2021

Edison Research Debuts 'The Social Habit'

Edison Research is debuting The Social Habit, new ongoing measurement of U.S. social media user attitudes and habits. The Social Habit marks the first time that national trending data of users of social media brands is available to subscribers.

The Social Habit will provide the ability to analyze data on social media users by political party affiliation or political ideology, among many other demographic variables. As the data will be collected continuously, subscribers will be able to pinpoint changes in behaviors and attitudes about social media as they happen.

The new The Social Habit dataset will allow subscribers to:
  • Spot trends in usage and attitudes about social media as they happen
  • Compare demographics and data from various social media brand users including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Snapchat, LinkedIn, and TikTok
  • Examine attitudes about topics such as trust in news coverage on social media, how users believe social media should be regulated, and privacy concerns
  • Analyze social media data before and after certain important dates, for example, January 8 when President Trump was removed from Twitter
“The Social Habit is a logical brand extension for us,” said Edison Research President Larry Rosin. “We have recently seen the worlds of media, social media, and politics collide, and as a company that measures all of these spaces we feel that now is an important time to mine these insights.”

Edison Research has been tracking social media behaviors as part of The Infinite Dial® since 2008, including heritage brands such as Facebook and Instagram, and was among the first to measure emerging brands such as TikTok before they gained significant market share. Edison Research previously released summary findings on social media behavior as part of their original The Social Habit study in 2019, and the effects of social media on American moms as part of their Moms and Media project in 2020. The Social Habit is an ongoing tracking study of U.S. social media users age 18 and older. Tracking began December 18, 2020, with approximately 350 interviews a week. The data is weighted to match the sex, age, and ethnicity of U.S. social media users from The Infinite Dial® 2020 report.

Contact Edison Research at for more information on becoming a subscriber to The Social Habit.

Data from The Social Habit will be showcased in a free webinar on February 16 at 1pm, Twitter Before and After Trump. Click here to register for Twitter Before and After Trump webinar

Liberty Media Raises Capital For A Major Acquisition

John Malone’s Liberty Media announced the launch of Liberty Media Acquisition Corporation (LAMC), a new special purpose acquisition company that will look for an acquisition target in the media, digital media, music, entertainment, communications, telecommunications and technology industries.

To support the acquisition bid, LAMC raised 575 million through an initial public offering that began trading on the Nasdaq on January 22nd.

LMAC’s management team will be led by Greg Maffei, who currently serves as chairman of Live Nation. Liberty is Live Nation’s largest investor, holding about a 33% stake in the promoter giant.

Liberty’s entertainment holdings also include satellite broadcaster SiriusXM and Formula 1 Group, as well as minority positions in iHeartMedia and Kroenke Arena Company, which owns Pepsi Center, an sports and entertainment arena in Denver.

Liberty’s ownership interest in LMAC will be attributed to the Formula One Group tracking stock.

Report: 1.3M New Users Joined Social Media Daily In 2020

Hootsuite, the global leader in social media management, and We Are Social, the socially led creative agency, have released Digital 2021, their latest annual report presenting the most salient global findings on social media and digital trends.

With much of the world spending a significant amount of 2020 in lockdown, Digital 2021 shows that social media users have grown at the fastest rate in three years. There are now 4.20 billion social media users around the world, representing year-on-year growth of more than 13 percent (490 million new users). The number of social media users is now equivalent to more than 53 percent of the world’s total population. 

Perhaps surprisingly, people say they are spending the same amount of time on social media each day as they did the previous year, at 2 hours and 25 minutes. Facebook remains the world’s most used social platform, followed by YouTube and WhatsApp. Facebook-owned apps account for 4 of the top 5 most used social platforms globally. 

Holiday PPMs Day 3: Orlando, Vegas, 10 More Markets Released

 👉Nielsen on Thursday, Jan. 28, 2021 released the third batch of Holiday 2020 PPM data for the following markets:

21  Portland OR

23   Charlotte-Gastonia-Rick Hill NC

25   San Antonio

27   Sacramento
28    Salt Lake City-Ogden-Provo

29   Pittsburgh

30   Orlando

31    Las Vegas

33   Cincinnati

34  Kansas City

35  Cleveland

36  Columbia OH

Click Here To View Topline Numbers for Subscribing Nielsen Stations.

Wake-Up Call: NY A-G...Nursing Home Deaths Undercounted

N.Y. Deaths in Nursing Home Residents Significantly Undercounted: The number of coronavirus deaths in New York State that were in nursing home residents was significantly undercounted, state Attorney General Letitia James said in a report yesterday, which indicated the official count from Governor Andrew Cuomo's administration could be off by as much as 50 percent. The discrepancy is largely because New York is one of the only states to count as nursing home resident Covid deaths only those who died on nursing home grounds, not in the hospital. The report said that at least 12,743 long-term care residents died of the coronavirus in New York as of January 19th, much higher than the official count of 8,505.

Biden Orders Special Obamacare Sign-Up Window: President Biden yesterday ordered the opening of a special Obamacare sign-up window for uninsured Americans amid the ongoing pandemic. The "special enrollment period" will run from February 15th through May 15th. The usual annual open enrollment period is in the late fall.

SOUTH AFRICA CORONAVIRUS MUTATION FOUND IN U.S. FOR FIRST TIME: A worrisome coronavirus mutation that was first identified in South Africa has been found in the U.S. for the first time, showing up in two people in South Carolina, state public health official said yesterday. The two people were in different parts of the state and their cases don't seem to be connected. Neither has traveled recently, leading health officials to say it's almost certain there are more as-yet undetected cases in the state. The South Africa variant of the virus spreads more easily, and there are concerns that the vaccines could be less effective against it. Other variants first found in the U.K. and Brazil have also recently been confirmed as being found in cases in the U.S.

➤SIX KILLED IN LIQUID NITROGEN LEAK AT GEORGIA POULTRY PLANT: Six people were killed and 11 others injured, at least three of them critically, in a liquid nitrogen leak at a poultry plant in Gainesville, Georgia Thursday. Liquid nitrogen comes from the refrigeration systems that poultry plants use. The cause of the leak at the Foundation Food Group plant is being investigated, but the company's Vice President for Human Resources, Nicholas Ancrum, said early indications are that a nitrogen line ruptured. Liquid nitrogen vaporizes in air into an odorless gas that can displace oxygen, so a leak in an enclosed space can push out breathable air.

➤RUSSIAN COURT REJECTS OPPOSITION LEADER NAVALNY'S APPEAL TO BE RELEASED FROM JAIL: A Russian court yesterday rejected an appeal by opposition leader Alexei Navalny to be released from jail. Navalny appeared in court via a video link from jail, denouncing the criminal case against him as government intimidation, declaring, "Yes, you have the power now to put me in handcuffs, but it’s not going to last forever." Meanwhile, several of Navalny's allies, including his brother, were detained by authorities, and social media companies were warned about promoting more pro-Navalny protests this weekend after tens of thousands turned out in rallies across the country last week. Navalny is alleged to have violated the probation terms of his suspended sentence from a 2014 money-laundering conviction that he has charged was politically motivated.

➤U.S. ECONOMY SHRANK 3.5 PERCENT LAST YEAR AMID PANDEMIC: The U.S. economy shrank 3.5 percent last year, the largest amount in 74 years, due to the pandemic, according to a government report out Thursday. The economic outlook for 2021 is unclear, but a sustained recovery is unlikely until vaccines are administered across the country and government rescue aid makes its way through the economy. Government data yesterday also showed that first-time applications for unemployment benefits fell last week to 847,000, but that is still a historically high level. Before the start of the pandemic last March, weekly applications had never topped 700,000.

🐔AMERICANS PREDICTED TO EAT RECORD 1.42 BILLION CHICKEN WINGS DURING SUPER BOWL LV: Americans are predicted to be all about the wings this Super Bowl weekend. The National Chicken Council has given their annual wing report and say that the big game that’ll pit the Kansas City Chiefs against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Sunday, February 7th, is an especially important food holiday this year, as fans stay home and crave comfort foods. They note that total chicken wing sales at supermarkets during the pandemic have totaled nearly $3 billion, up 10.3 percent from last year. It’s thought this uptick could be caused by the air fryer craze, as sales of in-store frozen wings shot up 37.2 percent. And despite the issues faced by the restaurant industry, those serving chicken wings saw a seven percent growth in 2020 compared to 2019. All-in-all, the the group predicts Americans will consume some 1.42 billion chicken wings during Super Bowl weekend.

Nick Cannon
Nick Cannon is getting another shot at a daytime talk show. The Masked Singer host’s show was set to premiere last September, but was put on ice after comments he made on a podcast about the ancient history of Black people and Jews were condemned as anti-Semitic.

“It’s been a longtime dream of mine to host my own daytime talk show and that I’m able to do this in New York City, bringing daytime television back to the place that has fostered generations of talent, is very special to me,” Cannon said in a statement. “With this show, we’ll be uniting all aspects of entertainment in a unique way in the very place where a lot of what we know today as our culture started. I couldn’t ask for better partners than Debmar-Mercury and Fox and thank them for supporting me in this endeavor.”

Cannon apologized and vowed to learn more about history after the comments were criticized. The uproar cost him a deal with MTV to produce and host Wild N Out, and his syndicated radio show.

He has spent time meeting with rabbis and Jewish leaders. In September, he started hosting his syndicated radio program again, and is expected to reach a deal on Wild N Out.

Nick Cannon will bow in the fall on Fox.

➤CICELY TYSON DEAD AT 96:  Hollywood Icon Cicely Tyson has passed away at age 96. According to The AP, Tyson's manager Larry Thompson confirmed that the Emmy and Tony Award winning actress died yesterday. Tyson just released her memoir Just As I Am on January 26th.

In a statement, Thompson said, “With heavy heart, the family of Miss Cicely Tyson announces her peaceful transition this afternoon. At this time, please allow the family their privacy.” Tyson just released her memoir Just As I Am on January 26th. She told Bustle why she decided to release her memoir at 96, saying, “People wanted to know all about my personal life, and I said, ‘That has nothing to do with my acting.' My personal life allows me to bring some kind of contribution to my career life. You have to have something feeding you. If you do not allow yourself to be fed by life, then you have nothing to give an audience. The characters that you read about come from a human life.”

🏈TEXANS' WATSON HAS REPORTEDLY ASKED TO BE TRADED: Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson has asked to be traded, according to media reports Thursday. ESPN reported that Watson, who signed a four-year, $156 million contract extension in September, made the trade request after he was reportedly unhappy with the process used by the Texans to hire new general manager Nick Caserio early this month. The 25-year-old had career highs this season in passing yards, touchdowns and completion percentage and set single-season franchise records in touchdown and passing yards. He's also the NFL's career leader in completion percentage.

🏌REED, NOREN TIED IN LEAD AFTER FIRST ROUND OF FARMERS INSURANCE OPEN: American Patrick Reed and Sweden's Alex Noren were tied at the top of the leader board after the first round of the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines in San Diego. They both shot an 8-under 64, with American Scottie Scheffler just one stroke behind.

⚾TANAKA LEAVING YANKEES TO PLAY FOR FORMER TEAM IN JAPAN: Pitcher Masahiro Tanaka is leaving the New York Yankees after seven seasons and returning to Japan, where he will play for his former team, the Rakuten Eagles. The Yankees acquired two new pitchers this week, and appeared not to have room for Tanaka in their rotation and didn't appear to be trying to resign the 32-year-old free agent. Tanaka was 78-46 in his seven seasons in the MLB with the Yankees, with a 3.74 ERA, and was a two-time All-Star.

🏈WASHINGTON HEAD COACH RIVERA IS CANCER-FREE: Washington Football Team head coach Ron Rivera announced yesterday that he is officially cancer-free, sharing the news in a tweet showing him with his dogs and a sign that said, "We kicked cancer's ass!" Rivera had been fighting squamous cell cancer during the season, with his diagnosis first reported in August, when it was said to be "very treatable." Rivera didn't miss any games while undergoing treatment.


➤O'NEAL TO HOST VIRTUAL 'SHAQ BOWL' ON SUPER BOWL SUNDAY: Shaquille O’Neal will be hosting a virtual SHAQ Bowl on Super Bowl Sunday before the big game on February 7th. The three-hour special will start at 3 p.m. ET and be available on Facebook and, and also on LiveXLive across more than 20 platforms including YouTube, Twitch, TikTok and Twitter. Taking part will be Terrell Owens, Chad "Ochocinco" Johnson, Ezekiel Elliott, Tim Tebow, actor Anthony Anderson, musicians Nelly, Quavo and Diplo, and WWE superstars Drew McIntyre and The Miz competing in different events. There will also be a "halftime" performance from Migos and DJ Diesel. The SHAQ Bowl is replacing Shaq’s Fun House, which had been held the past two years in Atlanta and Miami.

R.I.P.: Bill Tanner, Veteran Programmer, Iconic Morning Host

Bill Tanner
Iconic South Florida radio DJ Bill Tanner, of ‘Tanner in the Morning’ fame, has died at age 76.

Anyone who grew up in South Florida in the 1970s and ‘80s and listened to pop radio chances are you can still hum the “Tanner in the Morning” jingle from Y-100.

Set to the nagging, indelible sing-song riff from the old childhood jeer of “na-na-na-na-na-na,” the “Tanner in the Morning” handle came from DJ Bill Tanner.

Tanner, known in South Florida for inviting pop stars to record messages that urged listeners to “Get up and get off with Tanner in the Morning,” and who helped promote the careers of homegrown talents like KC and the Sunshine Band, died in his sleep at his Birmingham, Alabama, home on Thursday morning, reports The Miami Herald.  The cause was kidney failure.

Normally, that would be a common sentiment shared privately by millions of lucky sons and daughters the world over at times like these. But Bill Tanner’s special skills made his life public domain. And no matter how far his career took him once he left the Miami-Fort Lauderdale market, South Florida was special to him.

Tanner was among the wave of South Florida radio personalities who helped define the area’s popular culture and listening habits before there was so much entertainment competition from the internet, social media and streaming services.

The late Rick Shaw, a hugely influential South Florida DJ who helped expose the Beatles to U.S. listeners in late 1963, probably got that rock-‘n’-roll ball rolling.

But Tanner’s brand of bonding with listeners — of being open with fans and cultivating a recognizable, relatable, persona — helped usher in a wave of like-minded DJs and programmers including Sonny Fox, Robert W. Walker, Don “Cox on the Radio” Cox, “James T.” Thomas and Jo “The Rock and Roll Madame” Maeder.

In 1974, Tanner became program director at the year-old WHYI (100.7 FM) Y-100, where “Tanner in the Morning” was born, and helped develop its persona-driven pop format. Maeder was one of Tanner’s hires in 1977, resulting in Y-100’s first female DJ.

Maeder calls Tanner her “radio mentor” in her free-wheeling Facebook tribute. “I recall the good times, and the times I can now laugh about, with greater poignancy as time goes on and legends like Tanner pass away.”

Walker, who worked alongside Tanner at Y-100, also called Tanner a “priceless mentor and unwavering friend. A tough taskmaster but an immensely kind human. ... He knew talent and gave a ton of them their first break.”

Tanner joined Metromedia’s WASH in Washington, D.C., as program director and morning host in 1983 after leaving Y-100.

He returned to Miami in 1985, lured by a four-year, million-dollar contract to turn adult contemporary WEZI-FM into South Florida’s first major urban contemporary station, the Miami Herald reported. The Herald called Tanner, “South Florida’s first million dollar radio man.”

“The format will be geared toward the Latins, Blacks and party-going, club-loving Anglos in the community,” Tanner told the Miami Herald then. The new Hot 105 got off to a fast start, but ratings quickly tanked. Tanner was fired.

In 1986, Tanner was named the first program director at WPOW “Power 96” in Miami, where he also hosted a morning show that became popular with a young, Hispanic audience. He resigned in 1991 after a well-publicized drug bust, the Herald reported. A judge later threw out the case.

Tanner also made his name at Spanish radio in 1992 with the debut of WXDJ Miami.

Other gigs included directing stations in Los Angeles and, in 1997, he helped launch two new urban radio stations in Birmingham.

Tanner has been with SummitMedia in Alabama since 2013, where he led radio programming strategy for all of the company’s markets, including Birmingham, Greenville, Honolulu, Knoxville, Louisville, Omaha, Richmond, Springfield, Tuscaloosa and Wichita, according to SummitMedia.

Cox Media Names Rob Babin SVP For Radio

Cox Media Group Thursday announced the appointment of Rob Babin as SVP, Radio. 

As CMG’s head of radio and a member of the company’s Executive Leadership Team, Babin is responsible for the profitability, strategic direction, and operational execution of CMG’s radio platform, spanning 65 radio stations in 11 markets across the country. He will focus heavily on achieving CMG’s Radio strategic growth objectives while maintaining CMG’s industry leading content, impactful community engagement, and growth-focused culture.

“We are so excited that Rob accepted this role on the CMG leadership team,” said Dan York, President & CEO, CMG. “He is a proven leader with a true passion for the radio, CMG and his people. Rob is a collaborative and agile executive, with deep industry and CMG expertise and passion for everything he does – making him the ideal leader for CMG Radio.”

Rob Babin
Babin’s successful career in radio spans 25 years, with 20 years spent leading various business units and markets for CMG, including Regional Vice President leading five CMG radio markets (Miami, Houston, Tampa, San Antonio and Long Island), VP/Market Manager for CMG Miami radio, Director of Sales and General Sales Manager for CMG Atlanta radio (WSB, WSB-FM, WALR, WSRV), and General Sales Manager for CMG Orlando radio (WWKA). In his most-recent role, Rob was VP/Market Manager for CMG Atlanta’s award-winning and market-leading radio brands: WSB, WSB-FM, WALR and WSRV; and CMG Athens radio: WRFC, WGAU, WGMG, WXKT, WPUP and WNGC.

“Over the past 20 years, I’ve had the opportunity to work alongside many exceptional individuals and teams across CMG,” said Babin. “I am thrilled to accept this position and honored to lead our CMG radio team. With our company’s incredible strength, brands, and people, we will continue to excel and grow our radio business to new heights.”

An engaged community leader, Babin has served on several community and industry boards including the Urban League of Broward County, Orange Bowl Committee, Partnership Against Domestic Violence, Florida Association of Broadcasters, and he is currently a board member of the Georgia Association of Broadcasters and the Radio Advertising Bureau.

Baltimore Radio: MLB Orioles to Remain On The Fan

Entercom and the Baltimore Orioles announced an extension to their broadcast partnership agreement today, keeping WJZ 105.7 FM The Fan the flagship station for the Orioles baseball.

“We are very excited to continue our broadcast partnership with the Orioles,” said Tracy Brandys, Senior Vice President and Market Manager, Entercom Baltimore. “This ongoing partnership with the team is a major component of Baltimore’s number-one sports brand – 105.7 The Fan. As the nation’s unrivaled leader in sports radio, we’re proud to continue to be the station Baltimore turns to for the latest updates on their local teams.”

“Entercom has been a valuable partner for the Orioles and we are pleased to continue our relationship,” said T.J. Brightman, Senior Vice President, Chief Revenue Officer, Baltimore Orioles. “Through our partnership of the Orioles Radio Network, we have provided millions of fans across the Mid-Atlantic access to every single Orioles game and our corporate partners the opportunity to showcase their own brands.”

As part of the partnership, Entercom will manage the Baltimore Orioles Radio Network – an extensive radio network with more than 40 stations across Maryland, Pennsylvania, Washington D.C., Delaware, Virginia and North Carolina. All Baltimore Orioles Radio Network programming, including live game broadcasts, pre- and postgame shows, regular season weekly shows and additional offseason programming will air exclusively on 105.7 The Fan.

105.7 The Fan also serves as the flagship station for the Maryland Terrapin Radio Network and provides Baltimore gameday football coverage.

Listeners can tune in to 105.7 The Fan (WJZ-FM) in Baltimore on air, as well as nationwide on the RADIO.COM app and website. Fans can also connect with the station on social media via Twitter and Facebook.