Saturday, May 13, 2023

May 14 Radio History

➦In 1910...Actor Paul Sutton born (Died from muscular dystrophy at age 59 – January 31, 1970), He was a film actor, appearing mostly in uncredited roles, and most often in low budget B-movies during the 1930s and 1940s. He is perhaps best known as one of the actors who portrayed Sergeant William Preston on the radio serial Challenge of the Yukon. He departed his acting career in 1947, and later entered politics. In 1954 and 1956 he ran for a seat in the United States House of Representatives from Michigan.

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

Billie Burke and Judy Garland

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

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

Ad Industry Shocker: Twitter Hires The 'Velvet Hammer' As CEO

Muck, Yaccarino last month (AP Photo)

Elon Musk has named former NBCUniversal advertising chief Linda Yaccarino as Twitter's new CEO, as the company tries to reverse a plunge in ad revenue.

Yaccarino will take over a social media platform beset with challenges and a heavy debt load, after she spent several years modernizing the advertising business at NBCUniversal, which is owned by Comcast Corp.

In a tweet Friday announcing the news, Mr. Musk said Ms. Yaccarino will focus “primarily on business operations,” while he handles product design and technology. “Looking forward to working with Linda to transform this platform into X, the everything app,” he said.

One of Ms. Yaccarino’s prime tasks will be to lure back marketers who suspended spending out of concerns Mr. Musk would weaken content moderation or that there was too much uncertainty surrounding the company, reports The Wall Street Journal. 

She has a head start advising Musk: After advertisers bolted last year, Yaccarino reached out to help him navigate Madison Avenue and understand advertisers’ concerns better, people familiar with the situation said.

Inside NBCUniversal, the 60-year-old is regarded as an advertising sales machine. She is nicknamed the “Velvet Hammer,” because her hard-nosed negotiation tactics come wrapped in a friendly package.

During her 12-year tenure at NBCUniversal, Yaccarino and her 2,000-plus-person advertising sales team have generated more than $100 billion in ad sales, according to the company.

Yaccarino, described by colleagues as a hard-charging executive and artful self-promoter, joined NBCUniversal in 2011 after almost two decades at Turner, whose networks are now part of Warner Bros. Discovery. She has steered the company through a structural decline in television that has affected all major media companies as consumers cut the cable cord. That change has put downward pressure on ratings—the metric used to generate ad dollars. 

Yaccarino has pushed NBCUniversal to look beyond the 30-second TV ads that still make up the core of the business, embracing interactive shopping and forming partnerships with digital companies like BuzzFeed and Apple. She has streamlined ad sales across networks like Bravo, E! and the NBC broadcast channel, and played a role in the launch of the ad-supported Peacock streaming service.

CNN CEO: Staffers' Town Hall Coverage Got 'Too Emotional'

CNN CEO Chris Licht encouraged former President Donald Trump to 'have fun' in an exchange of words backstage before the start of Wednesday night's televised town hall event.

Trump promised Licht that he would boost CNN's ratings, to which Licht is said to have nodded before telling him to have 'a good conversation and have fun,' according to several eyewitness present at the broadcast at St. Anselm College in New Hampshire, reports The Daily Mail.

Trump's promise rang true with the Republican front-runner for the 2024 GOP nomination drawing in 3.3 million viewers - securing the cable network's highest viewing figures in the past two years. 

In 70 minutes of combative sparring with Cooper's CNN colleague Kaitlan Collins, Trump called January 6 a 'beautiful day,' wouldn't say whether he wanted Ukraine or Russia to win the war and branded Collins a 'nasty person' for pressing him on why he took so long to recover classified documents from Mar-a-Lago. 

Trump also dug in on calling the 2020 election 'rigged' and said the ending of Title 42 will be a 'day of infamy,' defended his actions on January 6 and gave his views on the war in Ukraine. 

CNN's Oliver Darcy
Licht has faced criticism from both within CNN and outside of the network for  organizing the event which saw Trump dominate the proceedings.

Media reporter for the network, Oliver Darcy, penned in his newsletter how it was 'hard to see how America was served by the spectacle of lies that aired on CNN'. 

On Friday night, it was revealed how Darcy along with his editor were summoned to a meeting with Licht and other top executives in which they told him his coverage of the Trump town hall had been 'too emotional,' stressing the importance of remaining dispassionate.

Despite the controversy, Licht has defended his decision to host the town hall in an editorial meeting with his staff emphasizing the importance of obtaining Trump's answers, even if they were not liked by everyone.

Licht dismissed suggestions that moderator Kaitlan Collins did not challenge Trump vigorously enough on his claims about the 'rigged' 2020 election.

'You do not have to like the former president's answers, but you can't say that we didn't get them,' Licht said in audio obtained by the New York Post as he laid down the law with staff.

'While we all may have been uncomfortable hearing people clapping, that was also an important part of the story because the people in that audience represent a large swath of America.

TV Ratings: CNN's Trump Bump Quickly Fizzles

The CNN Town Hall Wednesday was watched by 3.3 million people, according to Nielsen, a significant increase from CNN’s typical audience on an average weeknight at 8 p.m. That was slightly more than the average viewership for Tucker Carlson’s Fox News program, which was seen by an average of 3.2 million people in the first three months of the year.

But the ratings boost has quickly gone south.

According to Nielsen Media Research, CNN Lost 2.5 MIllion Viewers at 8 PM/ET the Day After Trump Town Hall Plummeting to 538,000 Viewers in Primetime 
  • CNN lost 2.5 million viewers day-over-day at 8 PM/ET on Thursday, plummeting to just 616,000 viewers at 8 PM/ET the day after its town hall with former President Trump, an 81% decline. FOX News Tonight won the hour in all categories with 1.4 million viewers and 157,000 with A25-54.
  • At 9 PM/ET, Hannity (2 million P2+) nearly quadrupled CNN’s hour, hosted by Kaitlan Collins, the hour only drew 546,000 total viewers.
  • In primetime, CNN averaged 538,000 viewers and 124,000 with A25-54 seeing declines of 77% compared to the prior day.
Also on Thursday, Fox News’s The Five topped the cable news ratings charts with 2.66 million total viewers.  Fox’s Jesse Watters had the second-highest-rated show with 2.18 million total viewers. No other cable news show crossed the 2 million viewer mark on Thursday.

The Five also led in the key 25-54 age demographic with 338,000 viewers, followed by Gutfeld!’s 252,000 demo viewers. Watters and Greg Gutfeld are co-hosts on The Five.

FEMA Urged To Act On AM Radio In Cars Crisis

Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-WI) and Rep. Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ) this week sent a letter to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Administrator, Deanne Criswell, expressing concern over domestic and foreign automakers' decision to drop AM radio access in many new electric vehicles. In the letter, the members highlighted the important role that AM radio plays in providing life-saving information to the public and asked FEMA to outline what impact this would have on the nation's Emergency Alert System. The letter also seeks clarity on what, if any, steps FEMA is taking to prevent this from happening in future vehicle models.

In part, the members wrote, "Unlike some other communication methods, including FM and HD radio, AM radio has extensive geographic reach, including into areas where there is little cellular service or access to broadband internet. There is considerable evidence of Americans relying on radio for vital emergency information during severe weather events, such as Hurricane Sandy...Especially given the growth in sales of EVs, it is vital for FEMA to make clear the negative impacts that lacking access to AM radio will have on public safety infrastructure."

➤See the letter HERE.

Also this week, the National Association of Black Owned Broadcasters (NABOB) sent a letter to Rep. Steven Horsford (NV-4), Chairman of the House Congressional Black Caucus, expressing concern regarding the removal of AM radio from new car models and some electric vehicles. Of the top 20 automakers producing vehicles in the U.S., eight of them have removed AM broadcast from their EVs with one major automaker removing the AM radio from their entire fleet of non-commercial vehicles.

"This represents a huge setback for AM radio stations serving the needs of the African American community, as AM radio is a crucial medium for delivering content that is culturally relevant and often missing from other formats," wrote NABOB President/CEO James L Winston. "More broadly, the removal of AM radio from electric vehicles would be a step backward in broadcasters' efforts to promote diversity and inclusivity in media. It would reinforce the dominance of mainstream media outlets and limit the diversity of voices and perspectives that are heard."

A story this week in the Philadelphia Inquirer notes that since its signal travels a greater distance, the AM band in particular has long been a vehicle for news, weather updates, and police emergencies. Across rural America, including Pennsylvania, where broadband and cell phone service can be dismal, some residents, lawmakers, and emergency management coordinators are concerned that more auto manufacturers, like Ford, are phasing out AM radio altogether in future models.

Auto makers such as Ford Motor Co. and Tesla Inc. have dropped AM radio from newer EV models. Car companies say the motors on such vehicles generate electromagnetic frequencies on the same wavelength as AM radio signals, creating buzzing and signal fading from the interference. 

The government should seek assurances that auto makers will maintain AM radio in cars, said seven former Federal Emergency Management Agency administrators in a February letter to Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and some congressional committees.

The issue, the former officials say, is that AM radio serves as a linchpin of the infrastructure behind the federal National Public Warning System, which provides emergency-alert and warning information from FEMA to the public during natural disasters and extreme weather events. 

“When all else fails, radio stations are often the last line of communications that communities have,” Craig Fugate, the head of FEMA during the Obama administration, said in an interview. Fugate is one of the signers of the letter.

SiriusXM Radio: Storme Warren Exits The Highway

Storme Warren

After nearly two decades, SiriusXM The Highway morning show host Storme Warren is leaving the company, MusicRow has confirmed. Friday (May 12) is his last day.

Warren is a 26-year Nashville industry veteran, celebrating his 36th year in broadcasting this year. As SiriusXM The Highway’s morning show host, he has been responsible for the Hot 30 Countdown and conducting Prime Country interview specials.

]In addition to hosting numerous events for BMI and their affiliates, Warren has hosted several high-profile events in Music City and around the world, including Nashville’s annual Independence Day and New Year’s Eve celebrations as well as music festivals all over North America, the Caribbean and Australia. His television credits as host and contributing talent include TNN’s TNN Country News, CNN’s Showbiz Today and GAC & CMC’s Country Music Across America and Headline Country.

Additionally, Warren runs Stone Beaver Productions, a full-service video production company, which has created numerous live and recorded television concert events, DVDs and specials, including Charlie Daniels’ Band CDB DVD Live and Vince Gill: Live at the Ryman.

“We are grateful for Storme’s contributions over the years in helping build The Highway on SiriusXM into the leading destination for today’s country music. We wish Storme all the best and look forward to continuing the tradition of presenting our listeners with the next generation of new country superstars,” says SiriusXM The Highway SVP/GM, Music Programming Steve Blatter.

Warren’s co-host, Macie Banks, will continue on as the sole host on an interim basis. Johnny Chiang, who joined Pandora as Senior Director of Country Programming in August of 2022, has expanded his role to also oversee country music programming at SiriusXM.

GA Radio: Steve Rickman Joins Classic Hits MyFox-FM

“Southside” Steve Rickman has landed a morning show at Pioneer Radio Group's classic hits MyFox FM, which is on various signals in metro Atlanta and Macon and on various apps.

He starts Monday with former 97.1/The River weekend and fill-in host Geoff Cole, according to Rodney Ho at

Rickman was relieved of his duties on Rock 100.5 in December when Atlanta-based Cumulus Media dropped the station’s broad rock format for a resurrection of alternative rock 99X.

The pony-tailed Atlanta native known for his catchphrase “yeah, c’mon!” was a long-time member of The Regular Guys on both 96rock and Rock 100.5 before joining Jason Bailey for a morning show for seven more years. This was followed by a short stint in afternoons with Axel Lowe.

Chris Murray, who launched the Fox FM network in 2021, worked with Rickman for many years as general manager for Cumulus and Rock 100.5. Soon after Rickman was let go from Rock 100.5 in December, Murray contacted him for a job opportunity at Fox.

For Murray, Rickman is a popular legacy personality and brand in Atlanta and Macon who has been in the radio business for more than 30 years. He is also an endorsement demon who will be able to bring in advertisers like Oxygen Financial and DUI lawyer George Stein. Over the years, he has made thousands of appearances at bars, restaurants and car dealerships.

Rickman briefly talked to 97.1/The River for the opening slot after Steve Craig departed, but he realized the station is very much music focused, not personality based. At Fox, which plays a mix of mostly 1970s and 1980s pop and rock hits, he said he’ll be able to design his own show and play maybe three or four songs an hour.

“Chris wants to build the station around me,” Rickman said.

Cole, a Georgia State University graduate who has been doing Atlanta radio since 1998 at places like 96rock, 94.9/The Bull and the River, said he hopes to have the “truest Atlanta morning show since we are both Atlanta natives.”

📻In Atlanta, Fox can be heard at 102.1 on the east side of Atlanta, 100.1 on the west side, 97.3 on the southwest and 104.9 in the southeast. It’s also heard in the Macon area.  'MyFox FM” is also heard on a number stations including WBAF Barnesville, GA (1090) and its corresponding FM translator, the Barnesville-licensed W285FK at 104.9; WFDR Manchester, GA (1370) and the Manchester-licensed FM translator W247CJ at 97.3; and WMDG East Point, GA (1260), which is simulcast on the Atlanta-licensed FM translator W272CV at 102.1 and the East Point-licensed W261DL at 100.1.

K-C Radio: KMBZ Listener Arrested For Threatening Host

A 49-year-old man has been arrested and charged with making a felony criminal threat against KMBZ talk radio host Dana Wright, according to The Kansas City Star

John D. Gribble was charged last week in Johnson County District Court and appeared in court via Zoom on Thursday. The radio station is in Mission. Wright showed The Star a text message left overnight at the station in March, allegedly from Gribble.

Filled with expletives, the message called Wright a sexual profanity and a “stupid libtard” who “needs to be publicly killed. Someday I’ll find that stupid bitch and fix that problem. Scott is the only voice of reason on that show.” 

Wright co-hosts the “Dana and Parks” weekday afternoon show with Scott Parks. As they discuss and debate news of the day, Wright typically takes a liberal view; he is more conservative. She also posted the message on her Facebook page Wednesday, where hundreds of her followers, mostly women, have responded with support.

Wright told The Star she wanted to tell the public about this case and the harassment she’s endured over the years as a woman working in journalism — 17 years in TV followed by 11 years now in radio. 

Mission police have been escorting her to her car after work. “I cannot tell you how many times in the past years, and way worse after January 6th, that I’ve been threatened because of my job,” Wright told the Star, referencing the storming of the U.S. Capitol in 2021. 

“A couple of times men have shown up in the parking lot waiting for me to walk out.” As a condition of his bond, the court last week ordered Gribble to be placed on house arrest, with his whereabouts monitored by GPS. He is also to have no contact with Wright, witnesses, her home or place of employment.

ID Radio: KFTZ-FM Imports Joey & Lauren For Mornings

Iliad Media Group’s self-syndication unit announced Joey & Lauren in the Morning have added CHR KFTZ Z103 in Idaho Falls, ID, as a new affiliate for their award-winning syndicated morning show.

“We are excited to bring Joey & Lauren to East Idaho, they are the perfect fit for Z103” said Bill Fuerst General Manager for Riverbend Communications. “Their show is fun and full of personality, and their social media content is next level. We’re confident our listeners will love Joey & Lauren for years to come.”

“Joey & Lauren In the Morning” launched in 2018 on market-leading Hot AC KZMG (MY 102.7) in Boise. The show shot to the top almost immediately, in the coveted W25-54, and P25-54 demographics. Joey & Lauren In the Morning started syndicating in 2021. Their award-winning show provides engaging content on-air, with their on-demand podcast, and across their many social media channels.

Joey and Lauren commented, “We are so excited to be on Z103! It’s a heritage station with deep roots in East Idaho and we are proud to be a part of it. We want to thank Bill, Jade, and Josh for welcoming us to the team. We are thrilled to be waking up with Z103 listeners every morning.”

Joey & Lauren in The Morning is a fun and entertaining radio show that provides smart, non-controversial content to make listeners laugh. With segments like ‘Make Up Or Break Up,’ ‘That Awkward Moment,’ ‘Phone Jenks,’ and more, this wildly successful show has garnered multiple broadcast awards and is incredibly popular with key adult and women demographics. For affiliate inquiries please email or visit

2022 Podcasting Ad Revenue Up 26% YoY

Podcasting continues to be one of the fastest growing digital channels, growing two times faster than digital advertising overall, according to IAB’s U.S. Podcast Advertising 2022 Revenue & 2023-2025 Growth Projections study, released on May 11 during IAB’s Podcast Upfront.

The seventh annual IAB U.S. Podcast Advertising Revenue study, prepared for IAB by PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, quantifies annual podcast advertising revenues generated over the past year, analyzes revenue share by ad category and content genre, and forecasts future revenues through 2025.

Sports, Society & Culture, and Comedy are Now the Top Revenue-Generating Content Genres

Sports (15%), Society & Culture (14%), and Comedy (14%) are now the top revenue-generating content genres, taking the lead frome News and political opinion content (down from 19% to 12%).

“In-person sports, lifestyle events, and in-store shopping have come back in a big way, taking the lead from news which held the top revenue genre spot since 2018,” said Eric John, Vice President, Media Center, IAB. “Podcasting revenue naturally reflects that shift in consumer behavior and it will be interesting to watch how the balance changes going forward.”

Category Diversification and the Democratization of Podcast Advertising

Podcasting continues to evolve as an ideal medium for niche audiences, attracting advertisers in a wide range of categories including Advocacy, Education, Home Improvement, and beyond. These smaller categories, collectively, are driving 28% of all revenues.

“Both mass and niche advertisers like the audiences, targeting, and ROI along with the brand-safe and suitable environments that podcasting offers,” added John.

The low cost of podcast production has led to an ever-widening array of diverse voices providing authentic content that niche audiences crave.

“It’s clear now that the growth of podcasting was not just a temporary shift in behavior,” said David Cohen, CEO, IAB. “The diversity of voices and content — often targeting underserved audiences — is driving more listenership and more time spent, and that is attracting more advertisers.”

IAB’s Podcast Report Part II to Be Released Later this Year

During IAB’s Audio Leadership Gathering in the fall, IAB will release its 2023 Podcast Report Part II, that will examine the drivers, strategies, and tactics related to 2022 revenues as well as, for the first time ever, reveal insights from the current year’s (2023) performance.

Consumers To Spend Record Amount On Mom

by Felix Richter, Statista

While mothers should really be appreciated 365 days a year, Mother's Day is a good occasion to celebrate them and their crucial role in families, communities and in society as a whole. In the United States and many other countries, Mother's Day is celebrated on the second Sunday of May. So this Sunday it’s time for families to honor their mothers and show them some love.

Appreciation can come in many forms, but a little gift has never hurt anybody, right? According to the National Retail Federation (NRF), Mother's Day spending in the United States is expected to reach an all-time high of $35.7 billion this year, with the average household expected to spend a whopping $274 on flowers, gifts or special outings. That’s up from $246 per household in 2022, when total planned spending had surpassed $30 billion for the first time.
Infographic: Americans to Spend Record $35.7B for Mother's Day | Statista
You will find more infographics at Statista

There are different ways to celebrate Mother's Day, but some things never get old. According to the NRF, 74 percent of respondents are planning to buy flowers and greeting cards this year, while 60 percent plan to take their mothers out for a meal or another activity. In terms of spending, jewelry, special outings and electronics are the top 3 gift categories this year, with planned spending of $7.8 billion, $5.6 billion and $4.0 billion, respectively.

RIP: Mary Turner, Pioneering KMET L-A DJ

Mary Turner (1947-2023)

Mary Turner, considered the first lady of rock radio in Los Angeles on station KMET-FM, has died. She was 76, according to The L-A Times.

Turner died Tuesday at her Beverly Hills home after a long battle with cancer, according to Jarrett Bostwick, executor of her estate.

Through the 1970s and early ‘80s, Turner was regarded as the most-listened-to female voice in radio. Known as “The Burner” — a moniker given to her by Peter Wolf of the J. Geils Band — she is best remembered by Los Angeles baby boomers for her years on KMET, the iconic FM outlet that was a must-listen for rock fans in the 1970s and ‘80s.

Turner was among the trailblazing women who received opportunities behind the microphone in the early 1970s after men had long dominated the radio business. Her chance came as FM rock music formats proliferated and offered an alternative to the tight playlists and rapid-fire style of top 40 AM stations.

Turner had two nationally syndicated programs on Westwood One, the company founded by her late husband, media executive Norman Pattiz, and broadcast to troops in 40 countries through the Armed Forces Radio and Television Service. She also hosted an in-flight music program for airline TWA. 

Mary and Norm Pattiz
A Gallup research study in 1981 found that her voice was heard by 23.4 million people a week.

Turner was born in Maryland on Feb. 4, 1947. After graduating from Indiana University in the late 1960s, Turner hoped to pursue a career as a TV producer or director.

She moved to San Francisco, where she answered phones at Autumn Records, the label where Sly Stone toiled as a producer, and later landed a job in the promotion department of local TV station KNEW. She eventually moved to KSAN-FM, the station programmed by Tom Donahue, who is credited with first developing the progressive radio format that played album cuts instead of just the hit singles heard on the AM dial.

At KSAN-FM, Turner worked as an engineer and did some fill-in air shifts. She moved to Los Angeles to join KMET in 1972 and was part of its evolution from a free-form “underground” station to a more commercial album-oriented rock format. By the end of the 1970s, KMET, which called itself “The Mighty Met,” was the second-most listened-to station in the Los Angeles market.

Turner became one of the station’s signature personalities along with B. Mitchell Reed, Jim Ladd and Jeff Gonzer. Her smooth-as-glass vocal delivery had a special appeal to young male listeners, including one who tried to get into the station at night to meet her, according to friend and former KMET colleague Ace Young.

May 13 Radio History

➦In 1941...Singer Richie Valens born Richard Steven Valenzuela (Died at age 17 – February 3, 1959) was a rock and roll pioneer and a forefather of the Chicano rock movement, Valens' recording career lasted eight months and abruptly ended when he died in a plane crash.

During this time, he had several hits, most notably "La Bamba", which he had adapted from a Mexican folk song. Valens transformed the song into one with a rock rhythm and beat, and it became a hit in 1958, making Valens a pioneer of the Spanish-speaking rock and roll movement. He also had the American number 2 hit ''Donna''.

On February 3, 1959, on what has become known as "The Day the Music Died", Valens died in a plane crash in Iowa, an accident that also claimed the lives of fellow musicians Buddy Holly and J. P. "The Big Bopper" Richardson, as well as pilot Roger Peterson. Valens was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2001.

➦In the middle of WWII. Adolph Hitler and his Nazi occupiers of the Netherlands and other European countries confiscated all radios.

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

➦In 1963...Station Manager Marlin Taylor (1st employee) and Sales Manager Jerry Lee (2nd employee) launched David L. Kurtz's new Philadelphia FM, WDVR, Delaware Valley Radio.

Now know as WBEB 101.1 FM, the station was also known as WEAZ during 1980s, before becoming WBEB-FM in 1993.

In spite of having a poor signal for its' first four years, WDVR became the top-rated FM in the Hoope Ratings within three months, pioneering the Beautiful Music format.

(Photo Courtesy of Marlin Taylor)

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

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

Airchecks form 1982-84...

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

On July 19, 2018, Entercom announced that it would acquire WBEB for $57.5 million. To comply with FCC ownership limits, Entercom divested Country WXTU 92.5 FM back to its previous owner Beasley Broadcast Group. WBEB was, at that time, one of the last major-market radio stations to be independently owned. The sale closed September 28, 2018.

On November 8, 2018, WBEB returned to its previous "B" branding as B101.1.

➦In 1973.."The Beatles 1962-1966" Red was released in 1973 along with "The Beatles 1967-1970" Blue album.   The album was compiled by Beatles manager Allen Klein. Even though the group had success with cover versions of songs, most notably with "Twist and Shout", which made No. 2 on the Billboard charts, only songs composed by the Beatles were included. Also noteworthy is the exclusion of any George Harrison compositions from the era (e.g. "Taxman"), with the result that all the included tracks are Lennon-McCartney originals. In contrast, the companion 1967–1970 compilation includes several Harrison-penned songs, and even one written by Ringo Starr.

➦In of the most prolific organists in the Golden Age of Radio, Rosa Rio died at age 107.

Known as "Queen of the Soaps," Rio worked for 22 years in radio, providing the organ background music for 24 radio soap operas and radio dramas, and playing an average of five to seven shows per day.  Some days she went from one program immediately to another—as when Lorenzo Jones and Bob and Ray were adjacent on NBC's schedule during the early 1950s—with less than 50 seconds to run from one NBC studio to another.  Some of the programs she played for included Bob and Ray, Ethel and Albert, Front Page Farrell, Lorenzo Jones, My True Story, The Shadow and When a Girl Marries.

During World War II she had her own radio show, Rosa Rio Rhythms.

➦In 2016…Retired advertising executive Bill Backer died at the age of 89.

He became an ad industry legend for creating the slogans "Things go better with Coke", further defining the product as "the real thing", and convinced the world that Miller Lite was "everything you ever wanted in a beer, and less", and should be consumed at "Miller Time".

In 1971, Backer created the Coca-Cola campaign and accompanying song "I'd Like to Teach the World to Sing (In Perfect Harmony)".

His advertising career started in the mailroom of McCann Erickson in 1953, rising to creative director in 1972, and vice chairman of the agency in 1978. In 2015, when the AMC television series Mad Men concluded with fictional character Don Draper's conception of the "I'd Like to Teach the World to Sing..." campaign while the character was working at McCann Erickson, media outlets contacted Backer, asking him if he was the basis of the Don Draper character. He told the New York Times, "I'm not Don Draper".

In 1979, he co-founded Backer & Spielvogel (with Carl Spielvogel), which eight years later became Backer, Spielvogel & Bates Worldwide, Inc., one of the world's largest marketing and advertising communications companies. This worldwide corporation had 178 companies in 55 countries, and employed 8,500 persons—1,000 Americans and 7,500 nationals of the countries in which business was being conducted.

In 1999, Advertising Age included his name in a list of the top 100 players in advertising history.

➦In 2019...actress/singer Doris Day succumbed to pneumonia at age 97.  In the 1950’s and 60’s she had a string of hit movies, but that followed her radio career.   She sang weekly on NBC Radio’s Bob Hope Show, was the gal singer for part of the 1947 season of Your Hit Parade, and recorded many smash hits for Columbia Records. When her hit movies ended she starred for five seasons in her own self-titled sitcom on CBS.

Debbie Ryan is 30
  • Actor Buck Taylor (“Gunsmoke,” ″Gods and Generals”) is 85. 
  • Actor Harvey Keitel is 84. 
  • Actor Zoe Wanamaker (“Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone”) is 75. 
  • Actor Franklyn Ajaye (“Car Wash,” TV’s “Deadwood”) is 74. 
  • Singer Stevie Wonder is 73. 
  • Actor Leslie Winston (TV: “The Waltons”) is 67. 
  • Comedian Stephen Colbert (“The Late Show With Stephen Colbert”) is 59. 
  • Drummer John Richardson of The Gin Blossoms is 59. 
  • Actor Tom Verica (“How To Get Away With Murder,” “American Dreams”) is 59. 
  • Singer Darius Rucker (Hootie and the Blowfish) is 57. 
  • Actor Susan Floyd (“All My Children”) is 55. 
  • Drummer Andy Williams of Casting Crowns is 51. 
  • Actor Brian Geraghty (“The Alienist,” ″Boardwalk Empire”) is 48. 
  • Bassist Mickey Madden of Maroon 5 is 44. 
  • Actor Iwan Rheon (“Game of Thrones”) is 38. 
  • Actor Lena Dunham (“Girls”) is 37. 
  • Actor Robert Pattinson is 37. 
  • Actor Candice Accola King (“The Vampire Diaries”) is 36. 
  • Actor Hunter Parrish (“Weeds”) is 36. 
  • Bassist Wylie Gelber of Dawes is 35. 
  • Actor Debby Ryan (“Jessie”) is 30.
  • In 1960..Gary Cooper, 2 time Academy award-winning actor (High Noon), dies at 60
  • In 1972..Dan Blocker, American actor (Cimarron City - "Tiny"; Bonanza - "Hoss"), dies of a pulmonary embolism at 43
  • In 1975..Bob Wills, American musician, known as the 'King of Western Swing' ("Steel Guitar Rag"), dies from bronchial pneumonia at 69
  • In 2019..Doris Day, American singer ("Sentimental Journey; "Que Sera, Sera"), actress known as the "girl next door" (Pillow Talk; The Man Who Knew Too Much), and animal rights activist, dies of pneumonia at 97

Friday, May 12, 2023

Yaccarino Exits NBCUniversal For CEO Post At Twitter

Linda Yaccarino

Linda Yaccarino, is leaving her role as head of global advertising at NBCUniversal to take the helm at Twitter, according to a person familiar with the situation.

Bloomberg reports Yaccarino and NBCUniversal announced her departure on Friday morning, effective immediately. Without naming Yaccarino, Elon Musk said in a tweet on Thursday that he had chosen a new CEO who would begin in six weeks and that he is shifting into the role of chief technologist at the social per centmedia company.

Yaccarino joined NBCUniversal in 2011 after nearly two decades at Turner Broadcasting. At NBCUniversal, she helped launch the ad per centsupported streaming service Peacock and oversaw live events like the Super Bowl and Olympic Games. Yaccarino also led partnerships with a variety of tech companies including Snapchat, YouTube, and, of course, Twitter.

“We are grateful for Linda Yaccarino’s leadership of NBCUniversal’s Advertising Sales business, and for the innovative team and platform she has built,” said Comcast President Mike Cavanagh. “Linda has made countless contributions to the company during her twelve year tenure, and we wish her the best.”

Boston Radio: Fred Toucher Returns to Sports Hub Morning Show

Fred Toucher returned to WBZ-FM 98.5 The Sports Hub’s top-rated morning show Thursday, almost exactly a month after he took a leave of absence to seek treatment for a throat problem that was affecting his voice.

The Boston Globe reports Toucher said at the top of the “Toucher and Rich” program that he was diagnosed with leukoplakia, a condition associated with smoking that causes thick, white patches in the mouth and throat. A longtime smoker, Toucher said he has quit.

But the show, which had a massive 25.6 share (Men 25-54) in the most recent Nielsen Audio ratings, was not fully intact. Cohost Rich Shertenlieb was absent. 

Toucher and Shertenlieb have had remarkable success as cohosts in the Boston market, first on rock station WBCN starting in 2006, then on the Sports Hub’s morning-drive program beginning with the station’s launch in August 2009.

But there has been public tension between the hosts recently. In late April, Toucher posted a series of tweets lamenting what he said was a lack of support from Shertenlieb and other show personnel.

Show personnel learned at 12:30 p.m. Wednesday that Toucher would return. Several hours later, they learned Shertenlieb would be out Thursday.

Rick Radzik, the Sports Hub program director, said in an email, “Pleased to have Fred back, his voice sounds so much better, though it will still require monitoring in the coming weeks. Rich had a sick day today.”

Woman Alleges Country Artist Jimmie Allen Sexually Abused Her

Jimmie Allen

Jimmie Allen is being sued for sexual abuse and assault by his former manager, reports Page Six at the NY Post.

A woman — who listed herself as “Jane Doe” in the suit filed Thursday in Tennessee — alleges that the singer “raped her and repeatedly subjected her to sexual abuse and harassment over a period of 18 months” while she was employed by his management company.

In the documents the woman details that Allen, 37, allegedly raped her during a March 2021 work trip to Los Angeles while he was a guest judge on “American Idol.”

5/12 WAKE-UP CALL: Some Border Counties Declare Disasters

Migrants gathered on both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border on Thursday hours before immigration restrictions known as Title 42 expire, with some rushing to cross ahead of tough new asylum rules that will replace a COVID-era order. U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has in recent days been holding up to 28,000 migrants at its facilities, far beyond its stated capacity and in what appeared to be a record, two federal officials requesting anonymity and the Border Patrol's union said.

The busiest border detention facilities are in the Rio Grande Valley and El Paso in Texas and two areas in Arizona, according to union President Brandon Judd. This week, the number of people caught crossing illegally topped 10,000 per day. Due to the high volume of arrivals, agents on Wednesday began releasing some migrants without a notice to appear in immigration court where they can make an asylum claim, telling them to report to an immigration office later, Judd said.

On Thursday night, a federal judge in Florida blocked such releases, saying they were similar to a policy previously enjoined in March due to a failure to follow proper regulatory procedures. On average, people are spending nearly three days in custody, Judd said.

In Yuma, Arizona, hundreds of migrants lined up in the chilly hours before dawn at a gap in the towering border fence, waiting to turn themselves in to U.S. agents. Some - like 40-year-old Jovanna Gomez from Colombia - decided to try their luck crossing now after hearing about the U.S. policy change. 'In my country, you hear that immigration will only be allowed until May 11, so we came racing against the clock,' she said. 'It wasn't easy.'

Under Title 42, hundreds of thousands of migrants have been quickly expelled to Mexico. But because Mexico only accepted the return of certain nationalities - mostly their own citizens and Central Americans, and more recently Venezuelans, Cubans, Haitians and Nicaraguans - migrants from other countries have largely been allowed in to pursue their immigration claims.

Chris Stapleton, Lainey Wilson Win Big At ACM Awards

Chris Stapleton
Chris Stapleton won Entertainer of the Year at Thursday night’s, ACM Awards. As he got emotional, he acknowledged his family and said “They give up a lot of my time and a lot of my wife's time so we can go do this. This is for them.” Though he’s been nominated before, this was his first win for Entertainer.

Dolly Parton, who won Female Artist of the Year in 1980 announced Lainey Wilson as this year’s recipient. Stepping up to the microphone, she said, “I can’t believe I just met Dolly Parton!” It was a big night for Lainey, she also won the coveted Album of the Year and shared two awards with HARDY for Best Visual Media as well as Best Music Event for “Wait in The Truck.” HARDY also picked up Artist-Songwriter of the Year.

Morgan Wallen won Best Male Artist, but wasn’t in attendance.

Cole Swindell’s hit, “She Had Me At Heads Carolina” picked up both Song and Single of the Year. Cole told the audience, “I don’t know what I ever did to get this fortunate.”

Brothers Osborne won Best Duo and Old Dominion won Group of the Year.

The show was packed with live performances from Keith Urban, Jason Aldean, Miranda Lambert, as well as a powerful duet from Luke Combs and Ed Sheeran.

While the ACM Awards historically aired on network television, this year marked their 2nd year to be streamed and network free. Hosted by Dolly Parton and Garth Brooks, the 58th Academy of Country Music Awards was held in Frisco, Texas.

Mom and Media 2023: U-S Moms Flock to TikTok

Tech savvy Moms have adopted more of their favorite devices as well as some new ones, as they continue to exhibit incredibly strong digital habits, according to this year’s Moms and Media 2023 report.

The latest installment of the annual report combines data from the Infinite Dial series from Edison Research and sponsored by Amazon Music, Wondery and ART19, with data from an additional online survey of moms. This Moms and Media 2023 report highlights device ownership and media consumption among Moms in the United States, now with the pandemic at-home lifestyle firmly in the rearview. In addition, from the recent online supplemental survey, Moms and Media spotlights some key questions about children and social media.

Moms self-reported using the internet daily for 15 minutes more than they did in 2022, for a total of four hours and 15 minutes.

News Corp Revenue Slips

News Corp reported slightly lower revenue amid a softening advertising market, despite continued growth at Wall Street Journal parent Dow Jones & Co.

The New York-based media company, which owns the Journal, HarperCollins Publishers and news organizations in the U.K. and Australia, said revenue fell 1.8% to $2.45 billion for the quarter ended March 31. Net profit declined 39% to $50 million, or nine cents a share, from $82 million, or 14 cents a share, a year earlier.

“In a period in which advertising was clearly insipid in certain parts of the world, our core non-advertising revenue has been particularly robust,” Chief Executive Robert Thomson said.

Ad revenue across units decreased 6% to $393 million, which Chief Financial Officer Susan Panuccio said was partly due to lower ad spending by technology and financial companies.

Robert Thompson
During a call with investors Thursday to discuss the company’s results, Thomson expressed his concern about the impact of generative artificial intelligence on News Corp’s intellectual property and the future of journalism. He called for compensation for the use of IP for training AI engines, the content that is surfaced in user queries and answers that are monetized by other parties when articles are aggregated and synthesized.  

“We expect our fair share of that monetization,” he said. “Generative AI cannot be degenerative AI.”

CNN Averages Only 3.1M Viewers for Trump Town Hall

A highly controversial “town hall” appearance Wednesday evening on CNN by former President Donald Trump averaged 3.122 million total viewers and 703,000 viewers in the coveted adults 25-54 demo, according to citing Nielsen data provided by the network.

That performance was good enough to trounce cable news rivals Fox News Channel and MSNBC in primetime — a feat ratings-starved CNN hasn't done too much of regularly.

CNN noted that the 2024 presidential hopeful's Wednesday night performance generated the second biggest audience for a single-candidate town hall since 2016, trailing only a Joe Biden appearance in September 2020, which averaged 3.465 million viewers.

However, critics said the viewership was modest, especially compared to the cable news audiences Trump generated during his frequent appearances in the run-up to his successful 2016 presidential bid.

In the words of media business pundit and former CNN on-air figure Brian Stelter, "These are not 2015/16 level numbers for Trump — not even close."

Nielsen figures

Also communicating on Twitter, current CNN analyst and former New York Times media reported Bill Carter added, "Has to be considered surprising (stunning?) result given both previous Trump ratings power + massive build-up."

Notably, the pay TV ecosystem within which CNN lives was about 25% bigger eight years ago, but there were other factors.

Carter suggested that CNN's core audience just doesn't favor Trump. He also mentioned this possible factor: "Trump TV magic is gone."

Family Feud: CNN Staffers Not Happy About Trump Town Hall

CNN’s chief Chris Licht faced a “fury of criticism” from the rank-and-file at the cable network for giving former President Donald Trump a forum to repeat his lies and conspiracy theories during Wednesday’s town hall.

The NY Post reports the ratings-challenged network, which Licht has been trying to pivot away from the left-leaning coverage of his predecessor, was pilloried after putting moderator Kaitlan Collins “in a no-win situation.”

“I can’t believe anyone thought this was a good idea,” one staffer toldThe Washington Post.

Oliver Darcy, the network’s own media reporter, also revealed the hand-wringing immediately after the 70-minute town hall from St. Anselm College in New Hampshire came to an end.

“CNN and new network boss Chris Licht are facing a fury of criticism — both internally and externally over the event,” Darcy wrote in his “Reliable Sources” newsletter.

“You do not have to like the former president’s answers, but you can’t say that we didn’t get them,” Licht said, according to the audio provided to The Post.

Licht also rebuffed suggestions that Collins did not push back hard enough on Trump’s claims of election fraud and other matters.

D-C Radio: Marky Marc Lands Nights At WKYS

Marky Marc is set to take on a new role as the night host at 93.9 WKYS starting on May 15th. Born and raised in the nation's capital, he fell in love with radio while surrounded by the rich cultural heritage of Washington, DC.

"We are thrilled that Mark is joining our team,” said Mike "Swift" Powell, WKYS Program Director. “His positive energy and passion for radio are contagious and needed in today's industry. We're looking forward to making history with Marc as part of our D.C. family!"

Marky Marc
He attended North Carolina A&T where he received a degree in Journalism and Mass Communication and became a member of Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity Inc. While at A&T, Marky Marc started producing and hosting his radio show. He parlayed that opportunity into an internship with 102 Jamz, which opened up doors for him to move into the night's role at Foxy 99 in Fayetteville. After one year of doing nights and achieving the highest numbers in the history of his daypart, he eventually returned to where he began his career at 102 Jamz as the night's host and eventually afternoon drive host, providing strong ratings in Greensboro, NC.

Marky Marc continued to build his brand outside of radio by hosting nightlife, basketball games, concerts, and he even created, the "whoUwit" foundation, where he brings awareness to breast cancer and builds multiple positive platforms for youth and the community.

"This is a full circle moment for me, and the opportunity of a lifetime!" said Marky Marc. "It really is a dream come true to be live on the radio in my hometown. I am ready to light the city up with my positive vibe and love for my community!"

K-C Radio: Shay Moore Gets Wake-Up Duty At KMJK 107.3

Cumulus Media
 announces that Cumulus Media has appointed Shay Moore as On-Air Host, Mornings, on 107.3, KC’s R&B and Hip Hop (KMJK-FM). Moore will be heard on “The Shay Moore Morning Show” weekdays from 5:00am-10:00am, and debuts on Tuesday, May 30th.

Moore was previously Morning Show Host for Hot 103 Jamz/KPRS-FM in Kansas City. Prior to that, she held on-air positions at stations including 98.5 WYLD-FM/Q93 in New Orleans, LA; WVEE-FM/V-103 in Atlanta, GA; and 105.7 KRNB-FM in Dallas, TX. Shay holds a B.A. degree in Communications from Johnson C. Smith University in Charlotte, NC, and an M.A. degree in Organizational Leadership from Medaille College in Buffalo, NY. She brings nearly 20 years’ broadcasting experience to Cumulus Media and was formerly a college-level multi-media instructor at Connecticut School of Broadcast in Atlanta, GA.

Donna Baker, Regional Vice President/Market Manager, Cumulus Kansas City, said: “Shay Moore is fierce! Her inspiring presence and laughter light up the room, and she is the perfect addition to the talented 107.3 team.”

WI Radio: Cumulus Stations Honored At The WBA Gala

Cumulus Media
 announces that Cumulus Oshkosh radio stations WOSH 93.9/1490 (News/Talk) and 103.9 WVBO (Classic Hits) were honored with Wisconsin Broadcasters Association Awards on Saturday, May 6th, at the Madison Marriott West in Middleton, WI. The awards were presented at the 2023 Wisconsin Broadcasters Association Awards Gala with more than 400 in attendance.

WOSH 93.9/1490 won first place for Best Continuing Coverage for 2022 in the Medium Market Radio – News & Talk category, for its coverage of Old Glory Honor Flight #59. WOSH Morning News Host Phil Cianciola traveled with nearly 100 U.S. military veterans to the D.C. memorials, including one World War II veteran, and submitted 19 featurettes aired throughout the one-day broadcast event on WOSH. WOSH also claimed second place honors in the Best On-Scene Reporting category, for WOSH Morning News Host Phil Cianciola’s first-hand coverage of the aftermath of Hurricane Ian from Sanibel Island, FL.

Sister station 103.9 WVBO won third place in the Best Radio Show category, submitted by Midday Host Dan Markus.