Saturday, October 29, 2022

October 30 Radio History

➦In 1745...Invention of the Leyden jar (the first capacitor) by Dean Ewald Jurgen von Kleist of the Cathedral of Cammin.

➦In 1907...Actor and songwriter Renzo Cesana was born in Rome Italy.  He is best remembered as The Continental, the suave debonair “latin lover” host of his own early TV series. He is also credited with creating the radio programs “Art Linkletter’s House Party”, “Stop That Villain”, and the “Radio Hall of Fame.” Cesana succumbed to lung cancer November 8 1970 at age 63.

Fred Friendly with Edward R Murrow

➦In 1915...Broadcaster Fred W. Friendly was born Ferdinand Friendly Wachenheimer in NYC (Died from a series of strokes at age 82 – March 3, 1998). He was a president of CBS News and the creator, along with Edward R. Murrow, of the documentary television program 'See It Now'.  He originated the concept of public-access television cable TV channels.

He entered radio broadcasting in 1937 at WEAN in Providence, Rhode Island, where he reversed the order of his middle and last names, and began using Friendly as his last name. In World War II, he served as an instructor in the Army Signal Corps and reported for an Army newspaper in the Pacific Theater (The CBI Roundup) before mustering out as a master sergeant in 1945.

By the late 1940s, Friendly was an experienced radio producer. It was in this role that Friendly first worked with Murrow on the Columbia Records historical albums, I Can Hear It Now. The first entry in the series, released on Thanksgiving Day 1948, covered the crisis and war years 1933–1945. It was a ground-breaker in that it used clips of radio news coverage and speeches of the major events from that twelve-year time span. Friendly created the concept after noticing the new use of audiotape in regular radio news coverage, as opposed to wire or disc recordings that had been an industry standard. Periodically, Friendly created recordings of news events when such recordings didn't exist or, recreated ones that were considered too chaotic to use on an album.

Although Murrow was an established CBS name and at the time Columbia Records was owned by CBS, Friendly's next full-time work came as a news producer at NBC. It was there that Friendly originated the idea for the news-oriented quiz show Who Said That?, first hosted by NBC newsman Robert Trout, followed by Walter Kiernan, and John Charles Daly. The program, which Friendly edited, ran irregularly on NBC and then ABC between 1948 and 1955.

Friendly later wrote, directed, and produced the NBC Radio series The Quick and the Dead during the Summer of 1950. It was about the development of the atomic bomb. It featured Trout, Bob Hope, and New York Times writer Bill Laurence, who had won a Pulitzer Prize for his coverage of the Manhattan Project.

➦In 1925...KUT-AM in Austin Texas began broadcasting.

Survey: Inflation Eats Away Slight Uptick In Newsroom Wages

The latest results of a survey of newsroom salaries has been released by the RTNDA. The RTDNA/Newhouse School at Syracuse University Survey was conducted in the fourth quarter of 2021 among all 1,780 operating, non-satellite television stations and a random sample of 3,379 radio stations

📺TV Overview

One year after a large increase in salaries, the latest RTDNA/Newhouse School at Syracuse University Survey found local television news salaries rose just 1.1% in 2021. 

That’s down sharply from the 3.5% growth in 2020. Adjusted for inflation, salaries actually fell 5.9% in terms of real wages. More than 85% of TV news directors said they found it harder to recruit people this past year

Market size - There were sharp differences in what happened to salaries generally based on market size.  Markets 51 to 150 fared the best – by far. In those two groupings, about two-thirds or more of the positions went up in salary.  Markets 151+ came next with 35% of positions going up. That’s the same as markets 1 to 25, but in the biggest markets, 60% of the median salaries went down from last year. At the bottom: markets 26 to 50, where three-quarters of the salaries went down and just 15% went up.

Newsroom size - Sorting by size of newsroom sometimes leads to some sort of meaningful information, and this is one of those years.  Newsrooms with 21 to 30 staffers did the best in salaries overall, but the bigger picture is that newsrooms with at least 21 staffers did much better than smaller newsrooms.  It wasn’t even close.

Starting pay - Starting pay in TV suffered a worse fate than salaries generally. Both average and median starting pay rose just $100 (per year) ahead of a year ago. That’s 0.3%, compared to a 7% inflation rate.

📻Radio Overview

Pelosi Attacker Described As 'Monster' Dad

Assailant entered via a back door

82-year-old Paul Pelosi was able to summon the police to his $6-million San Francisco home at 2.27am Friday by dialing 911 from his cellphone while his attacker was still inside the house. 

Paul & Nancy Pelosi
“What’s going on? Why are you here? What are you going to do to me?” Pelosi allegedly said in order to alert 911 to the emergency without tipping off intruder to the call,

The 911 operator is said to have sensed something was wrong and prioritized the call, likely saving his life. She declared an emergency instead of a less urgent welfare check. Police were at the home within two minutes of receiving the call and arrested David DePape, 42. DePape beat Paul Pelosi with a hammer and fractured his skull while shouting 'where's Nancy?'. 

DePape smashed a glass door at the back of the property and tried to tie Paul Pelosi up, according to reports. He started shouting 'where's Nancy' and cops say he jostled with Pelosi over the hammer before the attack. DePape grew up north of the border but moved from British Columbia to California 20 years ago. He lived with nudist activists in the liberal enclave of Berkeley and was best man at a 2013 nudist wedding.

DePape (left) was due to be charged with attempted murder, assault with a deadly weapon, elder abuse, burglary and “several other additional felonies,” police said.

Pelosi, meanwhile, is set to make a full recovery.

The daughter of DePape says that her father is 'consumed by darkness' and sexually abused her and her brothers when they were children. Inti Gonzalez blogged that her mother met DePape - whom she describes as her father - in Maui when she was pregnant with her. The couple moved to the Bay Area soon after Gonzalez was born. According to his daughter, DePape slowly became 'toxic' until Gonzalez's mother left him when she was 13-years-old. After DePape was out of the home, her brother Nebosvod began to have memories of their father 'physically and sexually abusing me and my brothers, which started when we were very young and continued until around 2008, when [Gonzalez] was 7.' Gonzalez wrote that her father's alleged violent attack on Pelosi was 'not much' of a shock 'considering the kind of extreme abuse he had inflicted on me and my brothers.'

Day One: Musk Promises 'New Era' At Twitter

Mere hours after Elon Musk kicked off a new era at Twitter Inc, the billionaire owner was deluged with pleas and demands from banned account holders and world leaders, reports Reuters.

The flood of requests underscore the challenge the CEO of electric car maker Tesla Inc faces, balancing a promise to restore free speech while preventing the platform from descending into a "hellscape," as he had vowed in an open letter to advertisers on Thursday.

Former U.S. President Donald Trump, who was permanently banned from Twitter over accusations of inciting violence after the Jan. 6, 2021 capitol riots, welcomed the takeover, but said little about a return to Twitter. "I am very happy that Twitter is now in sane hands, and will no longer be run by Radical Left Lunatics and Maniacs who truly hate our country."

Dmitry Medvedev, former Russia president and current deputy chairman of Russia's Security Council, tweeted his congratulations: "Good luck @elonmusk in overcoming political bias and ideological dictatorship on Twitter. And quit that Starlink in Ukraine business."

Others asked Musk to reverse penalties inflicted by the social media platform. In response to @catturd2, an anonymous account with 852,000 followers, known for being a big supporter of Trump's election fraud claims, and who said it was "shadowbanned," Musk tweeted "I will be digging in more today."

The editor-in-chief of Russian state-controlled broadcaster RT, Margarita Simonyan, asked Musk to "unban RT and Sputnik accounts and take the shadow ban off mine as well?"

The Bradys Split

The star N.F.L. quarterback Tom Brady and the supermodel Gisele Bündchen ended their marriage of more than 13 years on Friday, splitting up after years of intrigue from fans and tabloids and more recent speculation about Brady’s lengthy playing career and its effect on their relationship.

The NY Times reports Brady and Bündchen finalized their divorce in recent days.

“We arrived at this decision amicably and with gratitude for the time we spent together,” Brady said. “We arrived at this decision to end our marriage after much consideration. Doing so is, of course, painful and difficult, like it is for many people who go through the same thing every day around the world. However we wish only the best for each other as we pursue whatever new chapters in our lives that are yet to be written.”

Bündchen said in a post on Instagram that she and Brady will continue co-parenting their children “to give them the love, care and attention they greatly deserve.”

“The decision to end a marriage is never easy but we have grown apart and while it is, of course, difficult to go through something like this, I feel blessed for the time we had together and only wish the best for Tom always.”

Miami Radio: Report...Dolphins Broadcasts Moving To iHeartMedia

Joe Rose and Jimmy Cefalo

 Audacy's WQAM 560 AM reportedly has begun informing staffers that it will lose Miami Dolphins radio rights after this season, reports The Miami Herald.

The games are expected to move to iHeart Media, which owns several stations in South Florida, including WIOD-610 and WINZ-940 on the AM dial and WHYI-100.7 on the FM dial. The Dolphins’ contract with iHeart is expected to be a five-year deal beginning in 2023.

The Dolphins traditionally have picked the announcers, so there’s no indication that the team wouldmove on from announcers Jimmy Cefalo and Joe Rose. Cefalo, 66, hosts a show on WIOD-610, which is owned by iHeartMedia.

Cefalo revealed two years ago that he is battling demyelinating diseases, a condition that affects nerve fibers around the brain, optic nerve, and spinal cord. But Cefalo has given no indication that he wants to retire from broadcasting. 

Rose, 65, hosts a show on WQAM-560. WQAM, owned by Audacy. The station will continue to carry Heat, Panthers and University of Miami games. Audacy’s other local sports station, 790 The Ticket, recently changed formats to Spanish conservative talk.

Austin Radio: Audrey Allen Joins The Mix 94.7 Morning Show

Audrey Allen with Booker & Alex

Audacy welcomes Audrey Allen as morning show co-host on Mix 94.7 (KAMX-FM) in Austin. Beginning October 31, Allen will join the station’s award-winning “Booker & Alex” morning show, weekdays from 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. CT.

“I was really drawn to Audrey's engaging personality and know she will quickly resonate with our listeners,” said Bob Mackay, Senior Vice President and Market Manager, Audacy Austin. “Her innate ability to grab you with her colorful storytelling and quick wit are qualities that we feel make her the perfect complement to our station’s morning show.”

“This is the opportunity of a lifetime, and I couldn’t be more thankful to Booker, Alex, Nikki Nite and Bob Mackay,” said Allen. “Austin and I are in for a wild ride together.”

A native Texan, Allen joins Mix 94.7 after previously spending time with the “Kidd Kraddick Morning Show” on KHKS-FM in Dallas. She graduated from the University of North Texas with a Bachelor’s degree in converged broadcast media.

📻Listeners can tune in to Mix 94.7 (KAMX-FM) in Austin on air and nationwide on the Audacy app and website. Fans can also connect with the station via Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Bay Radio: News Anchor John Evans Retired From KCBS Radio

A longtime Bay Area radio voice is retiring after over 40 years on the air.

John Evans finished his final shift at KCBS 740 AM / 106/9 FM Friday morning, ringing in the 5 o'clock hour followed by applause and cheers from coworkers.

He's been the overnight anchor at the all-news radio station for 13 years, but his career in the Bay Area goes back 43 years, including time at legendary stations like 610 KFRC.

KTVU's Sal Casteneda worked with Evans decades ago, and spoke to him about his retirement from radio.

"I'm gonna miss the people. The comradery, the adreneline, the rush of the big story," said Evans. "But it's the relationships we develop in this business, and in any work. Sal, you and I worked together 30 years ago, and we still have a friendship."

Evans also reflected on covering major news stories, such as the Oakland Hills Firestorm, and the September 11th attacks. But he also said he is looking forward to having more free time again now that he is retired.

"I work a vampiric life, you know. I work the all-night shift," Evans said. "I'm here from eight in the evening to five in the morning. It will be nice to finally live during the day time."

Evans says he's going to spend part of his time writing a book. But he won't be entirely gone from the radio. He'll be filling in occasionally as an anchor for KQED Radio.

Axios' Sara Fischer Named On-Air Contributor At CNN

Sara Fischer is joining CNN as an on-air contributor on the media beat, the network has announced. 

Sara Fischer
As Axios’ media reporter for the last six years, Fischer brings a deep understanding of the business behind the media industry and all that entails. She has a long track record of breaking significant industry stories at the intersection of media, business and technology and is a leading voice in the field.

Fischer will continue to oversee Axios’ media coverage, including writing her weekly newsletter, and will now report on air for CNN in the areas of corporate media, technology, deals, entertainment, media regulation, and consumer habits. She will continue to cover CNN and its parent company Warner Bros. Discovery.

Fischer is returning to CNN after working in the Washington, DC bureau from 2013-2014. Prior to her role at Axios, Fischer worked in various business and editorial roles at publications such as The New York Times, The Washington Post, and Politico.

October 29 Radio History

In 1957...Bobby Helms was in Nashville to record “Jingle Bell Rock” for Decca Records. It made it into the Billboard Top Ten pop singles both this year and next, and has been a radio staple at Christmastime every year since.

In 1975....Bandleader John Scott Trotter, who was musical director for Bing Crosby on radio, and George Goebel on TV, succumbed to cancer at age 67.  He also conducted the sound track for almost all the Charlie Brown TV specials.

In 1995...Howard Stern’s “Miss America” book was in stores.  Lawyers for the actual Miss America pageant were not happy.

In 2003…According to the results of a Nielsen study, a third of the sales of "Beatles 1" were to fans aged 19 to 24, skewing the band's fan base even younger than it had been previously.

➦In 2005...Radio programmer Julian Breen, former Assistant PD at 77WABC NYC and PD at KFRC San Francisco, died.

Julian Breen
Following success at WABC New York and KYA San Francisco, Julian was largely responsible for developing two radio formats.

First, “Back Seat Music,” established at WPEN in 1975.  It was Julian's belief that people cherished most the music that was popular at the time that they lost their virginity.  He could never quite back it up with research, but didn’t let that stop him.

He also developed the Magic format that was launched at WMGK and cloned nationally.  “It was beautiful music for people who didn’t feel old,” Julian said.

Kate Jackson is 74

  • Country singer Lee Clayton is 80. 
  • Guitarist Denny Laine (Wings, Moody Blues) is 78. 
  • Singer-actor Melba Moore is 77. 
  • Actor Richard Dreyfuss is 75. 
  • Actor Kate Jackson is 74. 
  • Actor Dan Castellaneta (“The Simpsons”) is 65. 
  • Singer Randy Jackson of The Jacksons is 61. 
  • Drummer Peter Timmins of Cowboy Junkies is 57. 
  • Actor Joely Fisher (“Ellen”) is 55. 
  • Rapper Paris is 55. 
  • Actor Grayson McCouch (“Gotham”) is 54. 
  • Singer SA Martinez of 311 is 53. 
  • Actor Winona Ryder is 51. 
  • Actor Tracee Ellis Ross (“black-ish”) is 50. 
  • Actor Gabrielle Union is 50. 
  • Actor Trevor Lissauer (“Sabrina the Teenage Witch”) is 49. 
  • Actor Milena Govich (“Law and Order”) is 46. 
  • Actor Jon Abrahams (“Meet the Parents”) is 45. 
  • Actor Brendan Fehr (“CSI: Miami,” ″Roswell”) is 45. 
  • Actor Ben Foster (“Six Feet Under”) is 42. 
  • Bassist Chris Baio of Vampire Weekend is 38. 
  • Actor Janet Montgomery (“New Amsterdam”) is 37. 
  • Actor India Eisley (“The Secret Life of the American Teenager”) is 29.

Friday, October 28, 2022

R.I.P.: Rock 'n' Roll Pioneer Jerry Lee Lewis Dead At 87

Sun Records star, Million Dollar Quartet member and American music icon Jerry Lee Lewis died on Friday. The 87-year-old Lewis passed away .

The Tennessean reports Lewis had been in failing health over the last few weeks, and was forced to miss his induction in the Country Music Hall of Fame on Oct. 16.

One of the foundational rock 'n' roll artists of the 1950s, Lewis also enjoyed a successful second career as a country artist from the late-'60s through the early '80s. A profound musical and spiritual influence on several generations — on the entire zeitgeist of rock 'n' roll culture — Lewis authoritatively essayed everything from Tin Pan Alley to boogie-woogie to blues over the course of a 60-plus-year career.  

Yet his work, his supreme artistry, was often overshadowed by a life that could be described as Southern gothic. His turbulent personal life included seven marriages and numerous well-documented controversies and tragedies, including the deaths of two wives and two sons. 

Despite these many twists and turns of fortune, Lewis remained active on stage and on record into his 80s, long after most of his peers had either retired or died.  

As a wild-eyed, wild-haired, piano-pumping 22-year-old nicknamed “The Killer,” Lewis burst onto the American cultural landscape in 1957. His career would be defined by his early work for Sam Phillips and the Sun label. Epochal tracks like "Great Balls of Fire" and "Whole Lotta Shakin' Going On," were veritable riot acts of rhythm, musical passion plays that revealed a battle between Lewis’ deep religious roots and his love for boogie-woogie.

Scott Shannon's Amazing Radio Career

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

NYC Radio: Scott Shannon Retiring From WCBS-FM

After an incredible broadcasting career that has spanned over four decades, much of that time spent in New York City, 75-year-old Scott Shannon has decided to retire from his “Big Show” morning show on Audacy's WCBS 101.9 FM.

Earlier today, legendary radio personality Scott Shannon -- heard for almost a decade every morning on New York City's WCBS-FM with long-time co-host Patty Steele, entertainment reporter Brad Blanks, and a whole crew of returning "Big Show" friends -- has announced his decision to retire from daily morning radio on Friday, December 16.

"My alarm has gone off at 3:15 for eight and a half years now, and I believe it's time to take a break from morning radio and just kind of chill for a while before I decide what I want to do next in my life and my career," Shannon told listeners Friday morning, October 28. "It's a difficult decision for me because I actually love CBS-FM, it was a dream of mine to work here, and I did get to work here. I love the station, I love the people I work with and work for, and of course, I'll be honest with you, I think these are the best listeners we ever had."

"It's time to take a break, so on Friday, December the 16th, I will retire from CBS-FM right after we finish up the year the way it should be, with our live broadcast for the kids at Blythedale Children's Hospital."

Patty Steele, Scott's longtime co-host at numerous stations throughout their careers, added tearfully, "I absolutely loved working here... through all the challenges in my life like breast cancer, family addiction issues which have famously been explored in podcasting... my kids' high school and college graduations... you our amazing listeners have been my friends and my radio family, and I have not for one minute thought I could have gotten through it without any of you."

A member and Hall of Famer at the National Association of Broadcasters in Washington DC, as well as the National Radio Hall of Fame in Chicago

Cumulus Media Revenue Slightly Off During Quarter

Cumulus Media Inc. today announced operating results for the three and nine months ended September 30, 2022. 

Mary G. Berner, President and Chief Executive Officer of Cumulus Media, said, "Notwithstanding a difficult macro environment, consistent execution of our strategic plan has put us in an enviable financial position to effectively navigate through the continuing headwinds. Our solid Q3 results reflect that execution – although total revenue declined, driven by weakness in national advertising channels, digital revenue continued to grow, and we increased profitability as well. We also generated $24 million of cash from operations, repurchased $3.9 million of shares, opportunistically retired $2.8 million of senior notes at a discount and finished the quarter with net leverage of 3.7x, the lowest it’s been in more than a decade."

Berner added, “Looking ahead, we will continue to rigorously implement our plan, which includes: furthering our multi-platform evolution; supporting growth of multiple, profitable digital businesses; reducing our fixed cost base; investing in high-ROI internal initiatives; maintaining a disciplined approach to M&A, including enhancing cash generation from non-core asset monetization; bolstering liquidity; reducing net leverage; and optimizing a multi-pronged capital allocation strategy. Given our track record, we continue to have strong confidence in our ability, under this plan, to grow shareholder value even in the incrementally challenging macro environment.” 

Key Financial Highlights: 

  • Posted revenue decline of 2%, reflecting market-driven headwinds 
  • Outperformed in local spot versus national ad channels (i.e., network and national spot)
  • Delivered digital revenue growth of 5% year-over-year, led by digital marketing services (+12%), which benefited from new product additions, multi-market partnerships and strong sales execution, and streaming (+11%)
  • Recorded third quarter net income of $8.5 million compared to net income of $27.4 million in Q3 2021, a period which included a one-time pre-tax gain of $20.8 million attributable to a land sale in Nashville
  • Increased third quarter EBITDA by 2% year-over year, from $45.8 million to $46.6 million, with revenue declines more than offset by the benefits of prior and current period permanent fixed cost reductions
  • Reduced net leverage(1) further, achieving the lowest levels in more than a decade – best among peers
  • Generated $24.0 million of cash from operations, bringing year-to-date cash generation from operations to $54.5 million
  • Retired $2.8 million of senior notes at an average purchase price of 89.8% of par, bringing year-to-date debt reduction to $65.1 million
  • Reported total debt of $740.9 million at 9/30/22 and net debt(1) of $622.7 million
  • Reduced net leverage from 4.7x at 12/31/21 to 3.7x at 9/30/22
  • Completed $3.9 million of open market share repurchases with a volume-weighted average price of $9.43 per share - $21.1 million of availability remains under previously announced $50 million share repurchase authorization
  • In Q3, repurchased 415,063 shares or 2.0% of weighted average diluted common shares outstanding as of 6/30/22
  • Year-to-date, repurchased 2,139,200 shares or 10.2% of weighted average diluted common shares outstanding as of 12/31/21

Wake-Up Call: U.S. Economy Grew 2.6% in Third Quarter

The American economy is showing surprising strength, with gross domestic product increasing 2.6 percent in the third quarter after two quarters of negative growth. The numbers from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis confirmed a slowdown in housing, but consumer spending and government spending both rose during the quarter. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, in an interview on CNBC yesterday, said she did not see signs of a recession in the near term. She said the new GDP report underscored the strength of the U.S. economy.

Mortgage rates topped 7% for the first time in 20 years, the latest milestone in a rapid climb that has all but paralyzed the housing market. The rate on a 30-year fixed mortgage averaged 7.08% this week, according to a survey of lenders by mortgage giant Freddie Mac. Just seven weeks ago, the rate was below 6%. A year ago it was just over 3%. The last time mortgage rates were this high, the dot-com bubble had recently burst. Rates were on the way down. They were in the middle of a four-decade stretch in which they mostly fell, underpinning the growth of the modern mortgage market and boosting the rate of homeownership.

🛢SHELL OIL PROFITS HAVE DOUBLED:  President Joe Biden blasted Shell plc on Thursday for funneling profits to shareholders rather than lowering gas prices, after the British oil giant said it would boost its dividend and buy back shares.  Shell earlier on Thursday said its third-quarter profit was a near-record $9.45 billion, as it sharply boosted its dividend by 15% and announced plans to buy $4 billion more of stock over the next three months.

Having already lied about gas prices being down compared to when he took office, he was asked by a reporter about the 8.2 percent inflation America is currently dealing with. The reporter from News Nation asked: 'You've referred to the midterm election as a choice rather than a referendum. Given record inflation, why should voters choose Democrats?' Biden replied: 'Because it's not record inflation anymore, I'm bringing it down. Look what we inherited.'

➤TWO OUT OF THREE AMERICANS SAY THEY GO TO WORK SICK DUE TO INFLATION: Your co-worker may be at work with the flu this fall. Americans are placing rising costs above their health, information from a survey conducted by OnePoll reveals. Out of 2,000 U.S. adults, 67% say inflation concerns make them unlikely to take an unpaid sick day. 41% say they always or often work while sick. Workers are also afraid of criticism from their bosses for taking sick days. "Our research continues to show that many Americans are still not taking the proper time to rest and recover when they’re sick due to financial barriers," Sameer Rabbani said.

➤ELON MUSK TAKES OVER TWITTER: Elon Musk, founder of electric carmaker Tesla and the world’s richest man, has officially taken over the social media site Twitter. He celebrated his takeover by firing several of the website’s top executives, including the CEO. Musk has given himself the title “Chief Twit” on his Twitter profile. He calls himself “a free speech absolutist” and has said he would reverse the lifetime Twitter ban on former president Donald Trump for inciting violence in his posts.

A man from Tennessee who dragged a policer officer into a mob of rioters during the January 2021 assault on the U.S. Capitol has been sentenced to more than seven years in prison. Judge Amy Berman Jackson said the man, whose name is Albuquerque Cosper Head, was responsible for “some of the darkest acts committed on one of our nation’s darkest days.” Head grabbed Officer Michael Fanone as he guarded a Capitol entrance and dragged him into the crowd where he was beaten and tased until he lost consciousness. Fanone suffered a heart attack and a brain injury.

Musk Closes On Twitter, Heads Roll

Elon Musk fired several Twitter Inc. executives after completing his takeover of the company, according to The Wall Street Journal citing people familiar with the matter, capping an unusual corporate battle and setting up one of the world’s most influential social-media platforms for potentially broad change.

Musk fired Chief Executive Parag Agrawal and Chief Financial Officer Ned Segal after the deal closed, the people said. Musk also fired Vijaya Gadde, Twitter’s top legal and policy executive, and Sean Edgett, general counsel. Spokespeople for Twitter didn’t comment.

Hours after those actions, Mr. Musk tweeted: “the bird is freed” in a seeming reference to Twitter, which has a blue bird as its logo.

Musk first agreed to buy Twitter in April for $44 billion, then threatened to walk away from the deal, before reversing course again this month and committing to see through the acquisition. He previously indicated unhappiness with some of the top ranks at Twitter, at one point responding to a tweet from Mr. Agrawal with a poop emoji. He also used the site to mock Gadde, the top legal boss, tweeting an image overlaid with text that repeated allegations Twitter had a left-wing political bias.

It wasn’t immediately clear who would step into the top positions left vacant by Thursday’s exits.

NYC Radio: Audacy's 92.3 FM Starts 1010WINS Simulcast

The iconic New York City-based alternative rock station 92.3, aired its last broadcast Thursday morning, leaving listeners with one last song: LCD Soundsystem’s “New York, I Love You But You’re Bringing Me Down.”

The station — which can be heard throughout New Jersey, New York and Connecticut— and was once home to radio personality Howard Stern for 20 years.

WNYL ALT 92.3 FM switched its format to the FM simulcast of AM news radio station 1010 WINS, on Oct. 27 at 9 a.m, reports

The change was announced earlier this month by ALT 92.3′s parent company, Audacy.  Market president, Chris Oliviero, said the move will help the company solidify its position as the “go-to trusted source for news, traffic and weather every day.”

“At a time when quality journalism and local reporting is so critical, it was the ideal moment to make a strong investment in our news creation and distribution capabilities,” said Oliviero in a news release.

Although ALT 92.3 can still be streamed on 92.3 HD2 and Audacy’s website and app, saying farewell to its FM frequency was an emotional for the station’s hosts and community.

Spoken Word Report Shows Increase in Listener, TSL

Almost half (46%) of the U.S. population listens to spoken word audio content daily, according to the latest Spoken Word Audio Report released from NPR and Edison Research today. 

The fourth iteration of the annual report explores the ways spoken word media consumption in the U.S. has increased over time, including the number of listeners, and how long they listen. The findings were presented in a webinar hosted by National Public Media (NPM) VP of Sponsorship Marketing Lamar Johnson and Edison Research VP Megan Lazovick and are available now at

This year’s study also includes a special focus on how younger demographics are increasingly more interested in the medium, and reveals a 214% increase in listening to spoken word audio among those age 13-24. Key findings from the study include:

  • The number of spoken word audio listeners continues to increase. There are an estimated 26 million more people listening to spoken word audio in the U.S. than eight years ago. An estimated 131 million people in the U.S. age 13+ are daily spoken word audio listeners, up from 105 million daily listeners in 2014.
  • Spoken word’s share of all audio is increasing among all listeners. Listeners age 13+ spend 29% of their total audio time with spoken word content, up from 20% in 2014, a 45% increase.
  • Listeners age 13-24 show the most explosive growth with share of spoken word audio. That Gen Z segment spends 22% of their time with spoken word audio, compared with those age 13-24 in 2014 who spent only 7% of their time with spoken word audio, a 214% increase for this age group.
  • For the first time ever, daily spoken word audio listeners spend a majority of their audio time with spoken word. Those who listen to spoken word audio daily spend 51% of their total daily audio time with spoken word.

Milwaukee Radio: WISN's Mark Belling Cutting Back His On-Air Schedule

Radio talk Host Mark Belling, who still tops audience ratings with his conservative talk show on WISN 1130 AM in Milwaukee, addressed in a Milwaukee Business Journal interview why rumors he’s retiring are wrong, why he’s cutting back his schedule and how long he intends to remain on the station.

Belling told his audience Oct. 25 he agreed to a new contract to continue his afternoon drive program with a schedule where he’s mostly off the air the first four months of each year starting in 2023. He also announced that WISN-AM mid-morning host Dan O’Donnell will anchor the afternoon drive-time show when Belling isn’t on the air.

The biggest change will be that Belling will take off a significant amount of time in the winter and early spring, he said. He will appear on “The Mark Belling Late Afternoon Show” one week per month from January through April each year.

Mark Belling
The rest of the year, from May 1 through Dec. 31, he will resume his current schedule working four days per week with occasional vacation days, he said.

Belling, 66, said he held discussions for months with executives at WISN radio owner iHeartMedia ahead of the year-end expiration of his current five-year contract. He started the show in March 1989.

“This has been my intent really since about April or May to try to get something like this done,” Belling said Thursday in an interview. “It just took until this time that we finalized it. It’s been in the works for a long time.

“My desire is to keep doing the show, but to do the show less. And I think doing the show less makes it easier for me to keep doing the show for a longer period of time.”

Jeff Tyler, metro president for iHeartMedia in Milwaukee and Madison, said the company is excited that Belling signed the contract extension.

Philly Radio: Why WIP Chose DeCamara and Ritchie For Mornings

WIP's new morning show team: Joe Weachter, Joe DeCamara, Jon Ritchie, James Seltzer and Rhea Hughes

The Audacy-owned station 94WIP announced Thursday that midday hosts Joe DeCamara and Jon Ritchie and their producer James Seltzer would be joining morning show holdovers Rhea Hughes and producer Joe Weachter to succeed Cataldi when he retires at the end of the Eagles current season. Al Morganti, who has been with Cataldi for the show’s entire 31-year run, will move to an undefined role at the station.

Program Director Rod Lakin is now charged with finding a replacement for DeCamara and Ritchie middays. Below, Lakin discusses all aspects of the Cataldi decision and more in a wide-ranging interview with the Business Journal.

Rod Lakin
What was the process that led you to pick Joe and Jon?

We've talked to a lot of people and we had many qualified internal options as well. So I never really felt pressure that we wouldn't have a good choice. But I think we as a group had strategic clarity on it pretty early on. We wanted to find a show for mornings that could be the voice of the fan, which Angelo has been for so many years. A show that had strong enough opinions that could help define the sports narrative of the city and a show that had a great personality. In all three of those, I would say DeCamara and Ritchie checked those off. Morning drive especially, people's moods really peak early. It's usually mornings when they're the most optimistic. And so you have to have a show that has the ability to have fun and not take themselves too seriously.

What is it about Joe and Jon that you think will translate from midday to morning drive?

I think for a lot of shows, especially in morning drive, the best are the ones that have a better personality sense than a straight sports talk show and then a better sports sense than any personality-based show. And that's the profile of DeCamara and Ritchie. They've always had a great chemistry match. Joe is a very unique individual who's grown up a sports fan. And Jon is somebody who played at the highest level that our species knows — the NFL. So the yin and yang and the cliché Joe versus jock type aspects of their show, I think is a perfect match for morning drive.

What role did Philadelphia Market President David Yadgaroff and Audacy CEO David Field have in this decision?

Audacy Launches Baseball Podcast

As the 2022 Major League Baseball World Series gets underway, Audacy has announced the launch of Baseball Isn’t Boring, a new national daily podcast that will dive into the sport’s hottest topics and headlines, both on and off the field.

Hosted by Audacy's Rob Bradford - a longtime baseball columnist, author and broadcaster for WEEI (WEEI-FM) in Boston - the podcast is a project born from the 'Baseball Isn't Boring' campaign instituted by Bradford and major league pitcher Joe Kelly. Along with co-authoring the soon-to-be-released book, “A Damn Near Perfect Game: Reclaiming America's Pastime," the duo have spent the entirety of 2022 using social media and other outlets to prove baseball is, in fact, anything but boring. Kelly will join as the podcast's first guest in the debut episode.

The show will combine interviews with notable guests, topics, listener participation, social media and video. Every episode will feature a notable guest from the baseball and/or entertainment world and will cover topics that the baseball world and its biggest fans are interested in. For a full list of episodes, please click here.

Apple Reports Record Revenue

  • Apple reported fiscal fourth-quarter earnings on Thursday that beat Wall Street expectations on revenue and earnings per share. 
  • Apple came up short versus revenue expectations in core product categories including the company’s iPhone business and services. 

Apple Inc. reported record revenue in the September quarter, continuing a pandemic-fueled streak that investors have watched closely as demand for certain consumer goods has been sluggish, reports The Wall Street Journal.

The Cupertino, Calif., company announced its full-year earnings on Thursday after markets closed. To date, Apple’s business has largely proved resilient as broader smartphone-sales slowdowns and global economic challenges have dragged down peers.

“This is better than what we anticipated at the beginning of the quarter,” Apple Chief Financial Officer Luca Maestri said in an interview. Currency fluctuations had a negative impact on the company, he said. The dollar’s value has risen with respect to other currencies this year, a development that has weighed on the results of multinational corporations.

Amazon Reports It Missed Expectations


  • Amazon reported third-quarter results on Thursday that missed analysts’ estimates.
  • It also gave a disappointing sales forecast for the fourth quarter.
  • The stock sunk in extended trading. Inc. on Thursday said sales in the recently completed third quarter rose 15% from a year earlier, while net income was $2.9 billion—its first quarterly profit in 2022, though still a 9% decline from the same period last year.

The e-commerce giant jolted investors with its projection for revenue of $140 billion to $148 billion in the current period—analysts had expected more than $155 billion, according to FactSet. Amazon, which said the estimate includes a sizable hit from foreign-exchange factors, also said it anticipated operating income of anywhere between zero and $4 billion, reflecting the uncertainty looming over what is traditionally its biggest quarter of the year because of holiday shopping.

The company’s shares fell more than 12% in after-hours trading following the results to trade near $97. At that level, Amazon’s valuation is below $1 trillion, which it first hit in 2018.

The disappointing outlook capped an extraordinary several days that also saw shares of other tech giants plummet after their results showed worsening conditions in a range of areas.

In the third quarter, Amazon’s online store sales rose 7% to $53.48 billion after falling in recent quarters. The segment includes product sales primarily on its flagship site and digital media content. Its online sales got a boost from its annual Prime Day sale, which this year fell in the third quarter where last year it was in the second quarter.

Fired Staffer Hacks New York Post Website

When a New York Post employee on Thursday hijacked the company’s website and Twitter Inc. account to post death threats, as well as racist and misogynistic headlines, it was just the latest example of a company insider abusing their access for their own gain.

Bloomberg reports The Post fired the unnamed employee after headlines on the news site included offensive headlines, including calling for the assassination of some US leaders

For all the attention on foreign hackers, rogue employees constitute a major threat to organizations.

“The New York Post hack is just the tip of the iceberg,” Howard Ting, chief executive of cybersecurity company Cyberhaven Inc. said in an interview. “We read all the time about external hacking threats, but I think of them as the big pipe that bursts in your neighborhood and causes a flood. The internal threats are the faucets leaking in your neighbor’s home, the hidden problem that is dripping away over time.”

Rogers Takeover of Shaw Headed to Court as Antitrust Talks Fail

Rogers Communications Inc. failed to settle a dispute with Canada’s antitrust watchdog about its takeover of Shaw Communications Inc. during mediated talks, almost certainly sending the parties to court, reports Bloomberg. 

The companies said they’re committed to the deal and are confident of their chances in litigation. That step is scheduled to begin next month, with Rogers, Shaw and the Competition Bureau making their arguments in front of the federal Competition Tribunal.

At stake is one of the largest mergers in Canada’s history -- a C$20 billion ($14.7 billion) deal to unite Rogers, the country’s largest wireless and cable firm, with Shaw, a major provider of cable and internet services in the western provinces.

Rogers and Shaw tried to appease antitrust regulators by striking a deal to sell Shaw’s Freedom Mobile division to Montreal-based communications company Quebecor Inc. That wasn’t enough for the Competition Bureau, which has argued in court documents that Freedom will be a weaker competitor under new ownership and consumers are likely to pay higher prices. 

October 28 Radio History

In 1922...WEAF in New York broadcast the first collegiate football game heard over a widespread radio network.  Princeton played the University of Chicago at Stagg Field in the Windy City. The broadcast was carried on phone lines to New York City, where the network transmission began.

In 1940...comedian Henry Morgan‘s radio career took a turn for the better as he debuted ‘Here’s Morgan,’ a nightly 15-minute strip on Mutual's WOR NYC.  He began his radio career as a page at New York City station WMCA in 1932, after which he held a number of obscure radio jobs, including announcing.

He strenuously objected to the professional name "Morgan". What was wrong with his own name, Henry van Ost, Jr.? he asked. Too exotic, too unpronounceable, he was told. "What about the successful announcers Harry von Zell or Westbrook Van Voorhis?" he countered. But it was no use, and the bosses finally told Henry he could take the job or leave it.

Thus began a long history of Henry's having arguments with executives.

In 1945...CHUM launched as a dawn-to-dusk radio station.

On May 27, 1957, at 6 AM, owner Allan Waters switched the station to a "Top 50" format that had proven itself popular in some U.S. cities; Elvis Presley's "All Shook Up" was the first song played. "1050 CHUM" pioneered rock and roll radio in Toronto, and was noteworthy for hosting many noteworthy rock concerts including, among others, visits to Maple Leaf Gardens by Elvis Presley (1957) and The Beatles (1964, '65, and '66). While the station was rising to the top of the popularity ratings in Toronto in the late 1950s and early 1960s, it also built a new transmitter in Mississauga, Ontario (a few miles west of the current Toronto city line) along the Lake Ontario shoreline, and raised its power to its current 50,000 watts (DA-2) around the clock.

In the late 1950s, CHUM was calling itself "Radio One", as its ratings continued to increase. An important part of CHUM's success was the station's unpredictable morning man Al Boliska, who joined CHUM in October 1957, after working at station CKLC in Kingston, Ontario. By 1959, Boliska had made a name for himself as a disc jockey who got listeners talking. He also made them laugh, and became known for telling what he called the "World's Worst Jokes". Boliska also did a number of stunts, such as taking part in a professional wrestling match with Whipper Billy Watson. When he lost, that led to another stunt, where Boliska stayed away from his show for several days, saying he was now too discouraged by the loss to do his show. A hypnotist was called in, and Boliska's self-esteem was restored. Boliska left CHUM in late 1963 to go 'across the street' to CKEY.

He was replaced by WKBW Buffalo radio & TV personality Jay Nelson, popularly known as "Jungle Jay" from his role as host of a children's show on Buffalo's Channel 7 which was also popular among Toronto youngsters. Nelson was Morning Host for more than 20-years on CHUM.

CHUM became well known for its zany contests. In the 1950s and '60's, it was contests such as 'The Walking Man', where listeners had to spot CHUM's mystery walking man using only clues given out on the air. The 1970s' "I Listen to CHUM" promotion had DJs dialing phone numbers at random and awarding $1,000 to anyone who answered the phone with that phrase. In 1976, there was the CHUM Starsign promotion. Listeners wore a button featuring their astrological sign. If CHUM's 'Starsign spotter' saw you wearing your Starsign, you won prizes such as money or concert tickets to major events.

In 1946....Sky King debuted on ABC radio.  The radio seriedswas based on a story by Roy Winsor, the brainchild of Robert Morris Burtt and Wilfred Gibbs Moore, who also created Captain Midnight. Several actors played the part of Sky, including Earl Nightingale and John Reed King.