Saturday, December 9, 2023

Radio History: December 10

➦In Ray Collins was born in Sacramento.  Although best remembered as Lt. Tragg in 86 episodes of TV’s Perry Mason, he was a prominent member of Orson Welles Mercury Players beginning in radio.  He played 3 roles in CBS Radio’s legendary 1938 War of the Worlds. For several seasons he played Commissioner Weston on Mutual Radio’s The Shadow.   He died of emphysema July 11 1965 at age 75.

David Brinkley, Chet Huntley

➦In 1911...Newscaster Chester Robert "Chet" Huntley born (Died at age 63 from lung cancer – March 20, 1974). He is best known for co-anchoring NBC's evening news program, The Huntley-Brinkley Report, for 14 years beginning in 1956.

Huntley began his radio newscast career in 1934 at Seattle's KIRO AM, later working on radio stations in Spokane (KHQ) and Portland. His time (1936–37) in Portland was with KGW-AM, owned by The Oregonian, a Portland daily newspaper. At KGW he was writer, newscaster and announcer. In 1937 he went to work for KFI in Los Angeles, moving to CBS Radio from 1939 to 1951, then ABC Radio from 1951 to 1955.[5] In 1955, he joined the NBC Radio network, viewed by network executives as "another Ed Murrow".

In 1956, coverage of the national political party conventions was a major point of pride for the fledgling broadcast news organizations. NBC News executives were seeking to counter the growing popularity of CBS' Walter Cronkite, who had been a ratings success at the 1952 conventions. They decided to replace their current news anchor, John Cameron Swayze, but there was a disagreement on who the new anchorman should be. The two leading contenders were Huntley and David Brinkley. The eventual decision was to have both men share the assignment. Their on-air chemistry was apparent from the start, with Huntley's straightforward presentation countered by Brinkley's acerbic wit.

This success soon led to the team replacing Swayze on the network's nightly news program. It was decided to have the two men co-anchor the show; Huntley from New York City, Brinkley from Washington, D.C. The Huntley-Brinkley Report began in October 1956 and was soon a ratings success. Huntley and Brinkley's catchphrase closing of "Good night, David"—"Good night, Chet... and good night for NBC News" was developed by the show's producer, Reuven Frank. Although both anchors initially disliked it, the sign-off became famous. Huntley and Brinkley gained great celebrity themselves, with surveys showing them better known than John Wayne, Cary Grant, Jimmy Stewart or the Beatles. The gregarious Huntley remained the same, a friend commenting in 1968 that "Chet is warm, he's friendly, he's unaffected, he's—well, he's just so damned nice."

Huntley's last NBC News broadcast was aired on July 31, 1970. He returned to Montana, where he conceived and built Big Sky, a ski resort south of Bozeman, which opened in December 1973.

➦In 1913...pianist, composer, conductor, and arranger Morton Gould was born at Richmond Hill NY.  In the 1930’s & 40’s he was musical director for national programs originating at WOR Mutual, and CBS Radio.  He moved on to composing Broadway & Hollywood film scores, winning a Grammy & Pulitzer Award along the way.   Gould died Feb 21, 1996 at age 82.

1938 issue
➦In 1914...actress/singer Dorothy Lamour was born in New Orleans.  In the early 30’s she had her own quarter-hour NBC radio show out of Chicago, and in the late 40’s she was singing hostess of NBC’s weekly Sealtest Variety Theatre from Hollywood. Besides her movie career, which included the “Road” series with Bob Hope & Bing Crosby, she made guest appearances on numerous TV series, including Damon Runyon Theatre, the Steve Allen Show, Burke’s Law, I Spy, Name of the Game, Marcus Welby MD, Hart to Hart, & Murder She Wrote.  She died of a heart attack Sep 22, 1996 at age 81.

➦In 1961...John, Paul George and Pete Best met for the third time with their new manager Brian Epstein.  They eventually signed a five-year contract with Epstein on 24 January 1962 giving Epstein 10 to 15 per cent of their income. They signed a new contract in October 1962 which gave Epstein 15, 20, or 25 per cent of revenues, depending on how much he helped the band earn.  The Beatles would then share any income after various expenses had been deducted. Epstein then formed a management company, NEMS Enterprises.

On October 1, 1962, four days before the release of "Love Me Do", Epstein signed Lennon and McCartney to a three-year NEMS publishing contract.

In 1963, Epstein advised the creation of Northern Songs, a publishing company that would control the copyrights of all Lennon–McCartney compositions recorded between 1963 and 1973. Music publisher Dick James and his partner Charles Silver owned 51 per cent of the company, Lennon and McCartney 20 per cent each, and Epstein 9 per cent.

Epstein's death in 1967 marked the beginning of the group's dissolution and had a profound effect on each Beatle. In 1997, McCartney said, "If anyone was the Fifth Beatle, it was Brian."

Beatles' Manager Brian Epstein was interviewed in New York City by Murray the K for WOR-FM Radio in March 1967.

➦In 1963..."The CBS Evening News with Walter Cronkite" featured a story about the new British pop music sensations, the Beatles. The report originally had been scheduled to air November 22 but was delayed because of extended news coverage of the presidential assassination.

➦In 1963... One day after his 6th birthday Donny Osmond made his debut, singing with his brothers “The Osmonds” on NBC-TV’s “Andy Williams Show.”

➦In 1967...Otis Redding and four members of the Bar-Kays (Otis’ backup group) were killed in the crash of a private plane near Madison, Wisconsin. Redding was just 26 years old. He came along at a time when black rhythm-and-blues artists were making inroads into the Top-40. But it was not until after his death that one of his records made the top of the charts. “(Sittin’ On) The Dock of the Bay” was a number-one hit in early 1968, selling four-million copies in five months.

➦In 1980... Two days after his assassination...the body of John Lennon was cremated at the Fercliff Mortuary in Hartsdale, New York. The ashes were handed to Yoko Ono who took them back to their apartment in The Dakota.

Gosden and Charles Correll

➦In 1982...Freeman Gosden, the white radio actor (and situation comedy pioneer) who portrayed the black characters “Amos” & the “Kingfish” during the 30-year radio run of “Amos ‘n’ Andy”, died of congestive heart failure at age 83.

Gosden was born in Richmond, Virginia. During World War I he served in the United States Navy as a wireless operator, which prompted his great interest in the young medium of radio.

In 1921, Gosden first teamed up with Charles Correll to do radio work, presenting comedy acts, sketches, and hosting variety shows. They met in Durham, North Carolina, both working for the Joe Bren Producing Company. Their first regular show came in 1925 with their WEBH Chicago show Correll and Gosden, the Life of the Party. On this show the two told jokes, sang, and played music.

In 1926, Gosden and Correll had a hit with their radio show Sam & Henry on Chicago radio station WGN. Sam & Henry is considered by some historians to have been the first situation comedy.

From 1928 to 1960, Gosden and Correll broadcast their Amos 'n' Andy show, which was one of the most famous and popular shows on radio in the 1930s.

In 1969, Gosden was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his work in radio.

➦In 2004... an RCA microphone used by radio station KWKH, Shreveport for the historic Elvis Presley appearances at the Louisiana Hayride was sold for $37,500. The microphone was one of three used during 50 performances by Elvis for the Shreveport radio show from 1954 to ’56.

➦In 2016...Longtime Winnipeg morning man Bob Washington (CKRC), the voice of the K-Tel TV commercials, who also worked in radio in Moose Jaw, Saskatoon and Montreal before retiring to Vancouver, died of cancer at age 82.

➦In 2016...Allan Prell, the popular, folksy WBAL Baltimore liberal morning talk-show host recalled for his vivid imagination and gentle way of making fools of certain listeners, died Saturday at his Oakton, Va., home. He was 79.

Prell hosted a talk show from 1982 to 1999 at WBAL Radio.

Born in Shelby, Neb., Mr. Prell was the son of Philo Prell, a carpenter, and Ruth Ransom. He spent time during World War II in Middle River while his parents were defense workers. He spent a year at Nebraska Wesleyan University in Lincoln, Neb., and he got a job at radio station KFTG. In a 1989 Baltimore Sun article, he said he worked at 27 radio stations — and was fired from most of them — before joining WBAL.

Gloria Loring is 77
  • Actor Fionnula Flanagan (“Waking Ned Devine”) is 82. 
  • Actor-singer Gloria Loring is 77. 
  • Drummer Walter “Clyde” Orange of The Commodores is 77.
  • Country singer Johnny Rodriguez is 72. 
  • Actor Susan Dey is 71. 
  • Musician Paul Hardcastle is 66. 
  • Actor John J. York (“General Hospital”) is 65. 
  • Actor-director Kenneth Branagh is 63. 
  • Actor Nia Peeples is 62. 
  • TV chef Bobby Flay is 59. 
  • Singer-guitarist J Mascis of Dinosaur Jr. is 58. 
  • Bassist Scot Alexander of Dishwalla is 52. 
  • Drummer Meg White of The White Stripes is 49. 
  • Actor Emmanuelle Chriqui (“Entourage”) is 48. 
  • Rapper Kuniva of D12 is 48. 
  • Actor Gavin Houston (“The Haves and the Have Nots,” “Guiding Light”) is 46. 
  • Actor Alano Miller (“Underground,” ″Jane the Virgin”) is 44. 
  • Bassist Noah Harmon of Airborne Toxic Event is 42. 
  • Actor Patrick John Flueger (“Chicago P.D.”) is 40. 
  • Country singer Meghan Linsey is 38. 
  • Actor Raven-Symone (“That’s So Raven,” ″The Cosby Show”) is 38. 
  • Actor-singer Teyana Taylor is 33. 
  • Actor Kiki Layne (“If Beale Street Could Talk”) is 32.

  • In 1896..Alfred Nobel, Swedish chemist who invented dynamite and founded the Nobel Prize ceremony on this date, dies at 63
  • In 1967..Otis Redding, American soul singer-songwriter ("(Sittin' On) The Dock of the Bay"; "Respect"), dies in a plane crash in Lake Monona, Wisconsin at 26
  • In 1996..Faron Young, American country and honky-tonk singer ("Hello Walls"; "It's Four in the Morning"), and actor (Hidden Guns; Daniel Boone, Trailblazer), commits suicide at 64
  • In 2005..Richard Pryor, American Emmy and 5X Grammy Award-winning comedian (Live on the Sunset Strip), actor (Silver Streak; Stir Crazy), and screenwriter (Blazing Saddles), dies of a heart attack at 65
  • In 2021..Michael Nesmith, American rock guitarist (The Monkees), and singer-songwriter ("Different Drum"), dies of heart failure at 78

Lawmakers Probe Possible Collusion Between Journalists, Terrorists

A Terrorist's Kiss

House Republicans launched an investigation Thursday into several media outlets over unearthed footage and images showing freelance journalists for the companies embedded with Hamas during its Oct. 7 terrorist attack against Israel.

Photojournalists Hassan Eslaiah, Yousef Masoud, Ali Mahmud, Hatem Ali, Mohammed Fayq Abu Mostafa, and Yasser Qudih were at the center of a November article called Broken Borders: AP & Reuters Pictures of Hamas Atrocities Raise Ethical Questions — which was published by a watchdog group called Honest Reporting. The article prompted Israel's government to demand that CNN, the New York Times, the Associated Press, and Reuters review possible "collusion" between their freelancer journalists and terrorists.

Now, 15 GOP lawmakers are asking leaders from these outlets to hand over detailed information about the six photojournalists and communications with them, leaving the door open to issuing subpoenas, according to a letter obtained by the Washington Examiner.

"As you know, estimates are that over 1,200 Israeli civilians were murdered in this horrific attack, including hundreds of children," Rep. Andrew Clyde (R-GA) and the 14 House members wrote in the letter Thursday to CEOs Mark Thompson of CNN, Meredith Kopit Levien of the New York Times, Daisy Veerasingham of the AP, and Reuters president Paul Bascobert. "Over 200 Israeli men, women, and children were kidnapped and held in Gaza, where torture is rampant. If these photojournalists had prior knowledge and failed to alert authorities, they may be complicit in the death of hundreds of innocent civilians and numerous war crimes."

The letter underscores how legacy media outlets have faced intensified scrutiny for using freelancers who pro-Israel lawmakers and advocacy groups worry either participated in or may have at least been aware of the Oct. 7 attack before it transpired. Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) sent separate letters last month to Attorney General Merrick Garland and executives at CNN, the AP, Reuters, and the New York Times to demand answers over Hamas-embedded journalists.

The AP and CNN announced in November they were cutting ties with Eslaiah, who, in since-deleted Facebook posts, shared an image of himself being kissed on the cheek (above) by Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar as well as a video appearing to show Eslaiah on a motorbike in Gaza on Oct. 7 holding a grenade. However, CNN said last month that it "found reason to doubt the journalistic accuracy" of Eslaiah, who also was pictured standing in front of a burning Israeli tank on Oct. 7.

Honest Reporting's article also focused on Masoud, who documented the Oct. 7 attack against the Jewish state as a freelance photographer. 

In the Thursday letter, Clyde and the Republicans informed the outlets that Congress has been in touch with the Departments of Justice and State "regarding the possibility" that the freelancers could be "designated as terrorist affiliates." The lawmakers, who set a Dec. 22 response deadline, asked for the names, nationalities, and employment statuses of Eslaiah, Masoud, Mahmud, Ali, Fayq Abu Mostafa and Qudih.

Green Bay Radio: Remainder of WIXX Morning Show Walks Out

Nick Vatrano, Murphy, Katie Schurk

The last two co-hosts of the radio show "Murphy in the Morning" have signed off for the last time after over 20 years on the air.

The Post-Creswent reports their departure comes the week after their "Murphy in the Morning" co-host, Jim Murphy, retired.

Katie Schurk and Nick Vitrano have "made the extremely tough decision" to leave WIXX 101.1 FM after 20 and 21 years on the air, respectively, the station said. In a Facebook post, Schurk thanked the radio station and their listeners, and said she and Vitrano "want to take some time away to process this life-altering decision" before announcing future plans.

In the WIXX Facebook post, the station said, "We will miss them and sincerely wish them the best."

On both posts, viewers expressed shock, sadness and gratitude for Nick and Katie's long years of working with the station, especially for their work co-hosting "Murphy in the Morning." Several commenters praised the hosts' positivity and said they had been listening to their show for decades.

Vitrano and Schurk's departure comes on the heels of their cohost Jim Murphy leaving Nov. 28 after 32 years. While Murphy had "an emotional send-off" with tributes to his impact on Green Bay, Vitrano and Schurk preferred to make "a quiet exit," WIXX said.

As for what will replace the hosts' time slot from 5 to 9 a.m., WIXX told its listeners to "stay tuned" for a further announcement

WIXX is owned by Midwest Communications, a family-owned radio broadcasting company with 81 stations across the Midwest. It had been founded and owned by Duke Wright, a Green Bay radio mogul who died last year. Two family members, Michael and Mary Kay Wright, are now chief executive officers at the company, and another, Jeffrey, is the chief financial officer, according to the company website.

Megyn Kelly Warns ‘The Country Will Burn’ if Trump Is Jailed

Megyn Kelly warned that "there will be riots" and "the country will burn" if Donald Trump is sent to jail ahead of the 2024 presidential election, the SiriusXM host said on Thursday's episode of "The Megyn Kelly Show."

The NY Post reports the podcast host also pointed to Andy McCarthy’s National Review editorial on Chutkan’s ruling last week that Trump is not immune from criminal prosecution — with a conviction of the former president a “distinct possibility” that McCarthy wrote “could determine the viability of Trump’s 2024 presidential bid.”

“Chutkan might not let Trump go free on bond when he is likely convicted in that federal case in DC,” Kelly added.

The dire prediction comes as Trump faces a swath of charges in at least four separate cases, including one that’s underway in a Manhattan courtroom after New York Attorney General Letitia James accused Trump of heading up a $250 million fraud scheme.

Special counsel Jack Smith is also prosecuting the former president for improperly retaining national security documents at his Mar-a-Lago estate.

Other court cases plan on addressing the results of the 2020 election and the 77-year-old’s involvement in the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.

NYC Radio: Charlamagne Tha God Doesn't Like Biden's Chances

WWPR, iHM Syndicated Host Charlamagne

NYC and Syndicated radio host Charlamagne Tha God says President Biden can give voters the “ultimate Christmas gift” by not running for reelection.

“I know he thinks he’s got this in the bag, but the polls say otherwise,” the “Breakfast Club” radio personality, whose real name is Lenard McKelvey, said of Biden while guest hosting “The Daily Show” on Wednesday.

Biden in recent months has largely brushed off low poll numbers that some experts say could serve as warning signs for his 2024 reelection bid.

“I want Biden stepping into beat [former President Trump] the way I want him stepping in to defend me at a bar fight. I appreciate you caring, but I don’t like our chances,” Charlamagne told the Comedy Central show’s audience to laughs.

“The point is, we don’t need Biden to beat Donald Trump just like we didn’t need [late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg] to stay on the court,” he said.

“Maybe if RBG had retired during the Obama years, we’d still have Roe v. Wade,” he continued. “But people said, ‘No, she needs to be here to protect Roe.’ And now look, both of them are gone.”

Ginsburg died in 2020 at 87. The Supreme Court struck down Roe v. Wade, ending the constitutional right to an abortion, last year.

“The facts are: Biden is not getting any younger, he’s not gonna get any more popular and he’s not getting a new running mate,” Charlamagne said. “So please, Mr. President, give America the ultimate Christmas gift and step aside.”

Poll: Unhappiness With Biden Pervasive

President Biden’s political standing is at its weakest point of his presidency, a new Wall Street Journal poll finds, with voters giving him his lowest job-performance marks and favoring Donald Trump for the first time in a head-to-head test of the likely 2024 presidential matchup.

Biden lags behind Trump by 4 percentage points, 47% to 43%, on a hypothetical ballot with only those two candidates. Trump’s lead expands to 6 points, 37% to 31%, when five potential third-party and independent candidates are added to the mix. They take a combined 17% support, with Democrat-turned-independent Robert F. Kennedy Jr. drawing the most, at 8%.

Unhappiness with Biden is pervasive in the new survey, though much of it appears among Democratic-leaning groups who might still back the president on Election Day. Only 23% of voters say Biden’s policies have helped them personally, while 53% say they have been hurt by the president’s agenda. By contrast, about half of voters say Trump’s policies when he was president helped them personally, more than the 37% who say they were hurt.

Podcast: Hunter Biden Plays Victim Card

Freshly indicted First Son Hunter Biden believes his father’s political rivals are aware of his struggles with addiction and are trying to kill him.

The NY Daily News reports the 53-year-old businessman scion, who has been under investigation throughout his father’s presidency, was hit with nine tax charges Thursday in California. He also faces a gun charge in Delaware and possible prison time.

Hunter Biden
On the latest episode of the “Moby Pod” podcast, Biden claimed the attacks against him are part of an ongoing effort to “undermine” the president.

“They decided that the one way in which they would be able to certainly just undermine my dad’s confidence and ability to continue to campaign and move forward, particularly after the death of my brother [was] to [make him] think that he could lose his son that he just had regained from an almost-death, through addiction,” Biden told the artist Moby, whom he met in rehab. “You know, addiction provides for a lot of openings for people.”

President Biden has frequently spoken about the 2015 death of his son Beau Biden, who battled brain cancer after fighting in Iraq and serving as Delaware’s attorney general. The president has also said he’s “proud” of his younger son, whose debaucherous exploits have been made public in recent years thanks to photos apparently recovered from an abandoned laptop that show Biden using drugs and cavorting with questionable characters.

“As long as my dad is president of the United States, they're not gooing to stop” Biden said.

Report: X Working To Lure Smaller Advertisers

The social-media site formerly known as Twitter largely relies on advertising revenue from the world’s largest brands. But since owner Elon Musk alienated some of the biggest spenders, finding a new customer base has become critical.

Musk’s relations with brands hit a new low in recent weeks. Major brands stopped advertising on X after a report from a left-leaning media watchdog group showed ads appeared near pro-Nazi content on the platform.

Musk also recently described an antisemitic post as “the actual truth”; told brands that pulled their ads to “go f— yourself”; and accused Disney Chief Executive Bob Iger in a series of X posts of an apparent double standard for still advertising on Facebook and Instagram after New Mexico’s attorney general sued their parent company Meta Platforms alleging the apps steer predators to children.

Disney declined to comment on Musk’s messages. Meta didn’t comment on the specific allegations in the New Mexico lawsuit but said it worked “diligently to protect young users by using sophisticated technology, employing child safety experts, and by sharing information and tools with other companies and law enforcement, among other things.”

Elon Musk lashed out at advertisers boycotting X during an interview at the New York Times’s DealBook Summit recently. The billionaire said anyone trying to blackmail him with advertising money could “go f— yourself.” Photo: Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images

At the same time, Musk warned that an advertiser boycott would kill the company. He also said his post about “the actual truth” was perhaps one of the most foolish, if not the most foolish, things he has ever done on the platform.

X’s advertising team is trying out partnerships with other ad platforms that might help it attract small and midsize businesses, which has been a key ingredient in the success of tech titans like Meta and Alphabet’s Google.

X has also held preliminary talks about giving access to some of its ad inventory to ad-tech company PubMatic, according to a person familiar with the matter. The proposed deal could help X snag a share of the budget that advertisers earmark for buying ads across the web via automated ad auctions. Talks have stalled but are likely to resume in the new year, the person said.

Report: Fastest Growing Brands List For 2023

Morning Consult’s Fastest Growing Brands 2023 is the definitive measure of brand growth for both emerging and established brands, showcasing a wide range of companies and products that have accelerated their consumer appeal and awareness in 2023.

In their report, they rank the top 20 brands that have seen the biggest rise in purchasing consideration this year, explore how that is playing out across generations and reveal which brands have seen a lift in purchasing consideration, even if it didn’t translate to an immediate or direct increase in buying.

Morning Consult’s Fastest Growing Brands rankings are determined by measuring growth in the share of consumers who say they would consider purchasing from a brand over the course of the year. Morning Consult Brand Intelligence tracks consumer perceptions on thousands of brands on a daily basis, forming the foundation of this report.

The beginning of this year felt a bit like we were living in the future. Consumers had unprecedented access to developing generative artificial intelligence models via applications such as ChatGPT and DALL·E. AI dominated the headlines, and even after a fair amount of bad press about the unintended consequences of the technology, GAI brands garnered enough purchasing consideration to earn high spots on our Fastest Growing Brands® list.

Morning Consult also sees social media’s impact on this year’s list like never before. Not only are there four social media brands on our main list, but many of the other top-ranked brands can attribute their strong social media acumen or utility to a growing community of digital creators.

Our country’s continuing economic uncertainty also played a role in shaping this year’s rankings. Read on for our case studies on these brands and more.


  • 2023 was generative AI’s breakout year: ChatGPT is our No. 1 fastest growing brand.
  • It’s social media’s world; we’re just living in it: Facebook, Instagram, Instagram Reels and YouTube Shorts all made the list.
  • Go viral — but then make the most of it: Brands such as Starry and Clinique turned buzz into lasting purchasing consideration.
  • Gen Z gets thrifty with Dollar General: Economic uncertainty and social media virality pushed more young shoppers to the discount brand.
  • Messi boosted Major League Soccer: Millennials especially loved Messi’s splashy arrival stateside.

Fox News Wants Judge To Toss Producer's Lawsuit

Fox News asked a federal judge in Washington to dismiss a lawsuit by a former TV producer who said he was fired for disagreeing with the network’s coverage of the November 2020 election.

Jason Donner has no actionable claim against the company, according to a court filing by the network. The “law does not protect employees of news media organizations based on their differences of opinion over reporting and commentary.”

Donner, a reporter and producer for the network for 12 years, said he was fired in 2022 after complaining to his superiors about “false reporting” of President Donald Trump’s claims of a stolen election.

The network is a division of Fox Corp. Donner’s LinkedIn bio says he works as a senior adviser to Republican Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania. Donner and his attorney didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.

BFA Launches '12 Days Of Giving' Social Media Campaign

The Broadcasters Foundation of America is launching a social media campaign on Monday, December 11 with ‘12 Days of Giving’. Each day will feature a different message, ranging from thank you notes from grant recipients to positive statements about radio, television, and charitable giving.

“We need to reach radio and television professionals across every channel at our disposal,” said Tim McCarthy, President of the Broadcasters Foundation. ‘The 12 Days of Giving Social Media Campaign’ is a great way to raise funds and awareness of our mission, especially among junior-level people in broadcasting.”

“‘The 12 Days of Giving Social Media Campaign’ is a great way to raise funds and awareness of our mission, especially among junior-level people in broadcasting,” commented Scott Herman, Chair of the Broadcasters Foundation.

The Broadcasters Foundation has made reaching junior and up-and-coming professionals in broadcasting a priority this year with Media Mixers in New York and Chicago. Media Mixers bring together top-level executives with professionals new to broadcasting in a fun and relaxed environment. More Media Mixers will be announced in 2024.

The Broadcasters Foundation has distributed more than $15 million dollars in aid over the past 20 years. This year, the Foundation will award approximately $1.8 million. More information about the Broadcasters Foundation, including how to make a donation or apply for aid, is available at, 212-373-8250

L-A Radio: KCRW To Cut Staffers to Save $3M

Facing a projected $3 million budget deficit, Santa Monica public radio station KCRW-FM (89.9) is preparing to reduce staff amid a difficult media environment.

On Friday, the popular station began offering voluntary buyouts to dozens of employees throughout its organization. Staff members have until Dec. 18 to decide whether to accept a separation package.

KCRW is known for its local programs — including the music show “Morning Becomes Eclectic,” Madeleine Brand’s topical “Press Play,” and the weekly political series “Left, Right & Center” — along with national offerings from NPR.

Like other Los Angeles-area media outlets, KCRW has suffered from a pullback in film studio advertising during the Writers Guild of America and SAG-AFTRA strikes, which stretched from May until early November. KCRW, which has an annual operating budget of about $23 million, relies on member contributions and corporate sponsorships, including studios looking to promote their movies and television shows.

KCRW, which employs about 155 people, hopes to reduce its headcount through the voluntary buyouts, station president Jennifer Ferro told The LA Times.

The station doesn’t have a target number for its headcount reduction. Instead, managers first plan to see how many people volunteer to leave, Ferro said. The KCRW buyouts were offered to a large group, including managers, production engineers, technical directors and content producers.

Earlier this year, KCRW station managers had anticipated a deficit of about $1.8 million, which it planned to cover with funds with its reserves. But as the year progressed, the projected gap swelled to nearly $3 million, in large part because of the length of strikes..

R.I.P.: Actor Ryan O'Neal, Starred In 'Love Story', 'Paper Moon'

Ryan O'Neal (1941-2023)

Actor Ryan O'Neal, the 1970s Hollywood heartthrob who starred in such films as "Love Story," "What's Up, Doc?" and "Paper Moon," died on Friday at age 82, his son said in an Instagram post.

No cause of death was given. O'Neal, also known for his long-time romance with the late actress Farrah Fawcett, revealed in 2012 that he had been diagnosed with prostate cancer, though he said then that his prognosis was good.

O'Neal, a Los Angeles native who trained as an amateur boxer before taking up acting, made his showbiz breakthrough in 1964 when he landed a role in the hit prime-time television soap opera "Peyton Place."

'Love Story'
He is perhaps best remembered for his Oscar-nominated star turn opposite Ali MacGraw in the 1970 romantic drama "Love Story," a box office sensation adapted from Erich Segal's popular novel of the same title.

He went on to star in "What's Up, Doc?" opposite Barbra Streisand, a 1972 screwball comedy directed by Peter Bogdanovich, who also directed O'Neal in the 1973 film hit "Paper Moon," which co-starred the actor's then-young daughter.

Her debut role in the Depression-era drama as a precocious, cigarette-smoking orphan earned Tatum O'Neal an Academy Award at the age of 10 for best supporting actress.

She claimed in a 2004 memoir that she suffered years of parental abuse and fits of jealousy from her father, and that he had introduced her to drugs, leading to an estrangement of nearly 25 years.

Ryan O'Neal disputed his daughter's claims, and the two eventually reconciled, appearing in a biographical docuseries together in 2011 called "Ryan and Tatum: The O'Neals."

"My dad passed away peacefully today, with his loving team by his side supporting him and loving him as he would us," her half-brother, Patrick O'Neal, wrote on Instagram on Friday in a tribute, adding that his father "has always been my hero."

Radio History: December 9

➦In 1902.
..Brace Beemer born  (Died from a heart attacked at age 62 – March 1, 1965). He was a radio actor and announcer at radio station WXYZ-AM, Detroit.

He is best known as the radio voice of the Lone Ranger.  Beemer became the third radio voice of the Lone Ranger on April 18, 1941, and remained so until the series' last new episode on September 3, 1954. During the 13 years and 3,000 episodes that Beemer played the title character, he was required by contract to restrict his radio acting to that one role until the program left the air.

The experienced and popular Western film actor, Clayton Moore, was chosen to take over the role for the TV series. Although Beemer had the right voice and had made many public appearances as the Ranger, he had no experience as a film actor, as he preferred live action to television. However, Beemer's voice as the character was so familiar that Moore imitated his sound in the earliest TV episodes.

Beemer also portrayed "Sergeant William Preston" of the Yukon on Challenge of the Yukon, for a brief time after the Lone Ranger series ended.

Beemer's last TV appearance, was an interview in 1965 with former film actor, Bill Kennedy on his "At the Movies" show on CKLW TV9 from Windsor, Ont., Canada. Brace Beemer died the very next day.

➦In 1921...Ted Rogers Sr., who would later invent the first alternating-current vacuum radio tube, and give birth to Toronto’s CFRB Radio, became the first amateur radio operator in Canada to successfully transmit a signal across the Atlantic. He was taking part in a competition sponsored by the American Radio Relay League (ARRL).

➦In 1933...Talk show host Morton Downey Jr. was born in Los Angeles.  Unsuccessful as a pop & country singer, in the 1960’s he turned to deejaying at radio stations in Bakersfield, San Diego, and Miami as “Doc Downey the DJ.”

He perfected the abrasive, right-wing populist style of talk radio at Sacramento’s KFBK before transferring it to TV out of New York. (He was replaced at KFBK by Rush Limbaugh.)

Downey died from lung cancer Mar 12, 2001 at age 67.

➦In 1940...the radio panel show that originated with joke-telling sessions at the Friar’s Club, 'Can You Top This' debuted on WOR New York.  It would hit the networks 22 months later, and run on first NBC, then Mutual, ABC, and then NBC again, until 1954.

➦In 1940... the Longines Watch Company signed for the first FM radio advertising contract — with experimental station W2XOR in New York City. The ads ran for 26 weeks and promoted the Longines time signals.

➦In 1968...Early computer pioneer Douglas Carl Engelbart (January 30, 1925 – July 2, 2013) first demonstrated the computer mouse.  He is best known for his work on founding the field of human–computer interaction, particularly while at his Augmentation Research Center Lab in SRI International, which resulted in creation of the computer mouse, and the development of hypertext, networked computers, and precursors to graphical user interfaces. 

➦In 1977...Gene Klavan last show at WNEW 1130 AM NYC.

Klavan is most known for his time as half of the morning program "Klavan and Finch." The program ran from 1952 to 1968; prior to 1952, Dee Finch had co-hosted the show with Gene Rayburn. Co-host Finch departed and Klavan continued solo until 1977.

He wrote a biography in 1964, "We Die at Dawn", that largely focused on the morning show. He followed it up in 1972 with "Turn That Damned Thing Off", a book about the news media industry. In 1977 he moved to 710 WOR and left radio in 1980. He later became a commentator at WCBS-TV, a host for the AMC channel, and a columnist for Newsday.

➦In 1998...CBS Corp. raised $2.9 billion by selling a 17 percent stake in Infinity Broadcasting Corp., its radio and outdoor advertising business. The initial public offering of stock was the largest ever in the media industry.

➦In 2004...David Barry Brudnoy died at age 64 (Born -- June 5, 1940) was an American talk radio host in Boston from 1976 to 2004. He was known for espousing his libertarian views on a wide range of political issues, in a manner that was courteous. Thanks to wide signal reach of WBZ 1030 AM, he gained a following from across the United States as well as Canada. On December 9, 2004, he succumbed to Merkel cell carcinoma after it had metastasized to his lungs and kidneys.

Friday, December 8, 2023

Spotify's CFO Departing

Paul Vogel will step down as Spotify’s chief financial officer on March 31, 2024, the company announced Thursday (Dec. 7). 

As the streaming giant searches for a replacement, Ben Kung, VP of financial planning and analysis, will take on expanded responsibilities to support “the company’s realignment of its financial leadership team,” the announcement stated. 

Paul Vogel
Billboard reports Vogel was promoted to chief financial officer in 2020 after the departure of Barry McCarthy. He had previously headed Spotify’s investor relations and led the financial planning and analysis teams. During his tenure, Spotify grew from 124 million to 226 million subscribers and expanded quarterly revenue by 81% from 1.86 billion euros ($2 billion) to 3.36 billion euros ($3.63 billion). 

Despite the constant growth, Spotify has continued to routinely post operating losses and struggled to turn a financial corner within the constraints of a business model dominated by high music licensing costs. In a statement, CEO Daniel Ek noted that Spotify spent two years trying to bring its spending in line with investors’ expectations while putting money into growth opportunities. 

“I’ve talked a lot with Paul about the need to balance these two objectives carefully,” said Ek in a statement. “Over time, we’ve come to the conclusion that Spotify is entering a new phase and needs a CFO with a different mix of experiences. As a result, we’ve decided to part ways, but I am very appreciative of the steady hand Paul has provided in supporting the expansion of our business through a global pandemic and unprecedented economic uncertainty.”

Vogel joins head of marketing Taj Alavi, who is also leaving the company. The departures illustrate that the deep cuts Spotify announced this week extend to the highest ranks of management.

Albert Rodriguez Steps Down As SBS President/CEO

In a surprise announcement during the company's third quarter earnings call on Thursday, Albert Rodriguez announced stepping down as President & COO of Spanish Broadcasting System. 

Albert Rodriguez
Rodriguez was named COO in May, 2012, and then President in 2021, after serving as Chief Revenue Officer for the company's TV unit and General Manager of its Miami TV operations. Before that, Rodriguez served as General Sales Manager for the SBS Miami's radio cluster.

Rodriguez said he's resigning after "much reflection and consideration." He'll remain with SBS as a strategic advisor "providing guidance and strategic insights to ensure a seamless transition."

"It's been an incredible journey," added Rodriguez. "And I'm immensely proud of what we've achieved together, in particular, to the beacon of the Hispanic voice in America, which is my dear brother, Raul Alarcon, Jr. He's like a brother to me."

SBS Chief Financial Officer Josw Molina concluded the earnings call by wishing Rodriguez the best in his new role. "You did an amazing job and will continue to do amazing things."

Seattle Radio: Talk KTTH Revamps Line-Up For The New Year

AM 770 KTTH is adding FOX News Radio’s “The Guy Benson Show” from 12:00-3:00 p.m. as part of a revamped lineup starting January 1, 2024.

“We’re incredibly excited to add Guy Benson’s fresh conservative perspective to our primetime lineup,” said KTTH Program Director Jason Antebi. “Guy’s political acumen, ability to break down complex issues in ways making it easy to follow, and his pulse on what’s happening from Washington state to Washington DC will be a huge asset for the KTTH audience.”

Guy Benson
Benson is the Political Editor of and a FOX News Contributor. He joined the network in 2013 providing political commentary across FOX News Channel (FNC) and FOX Business Network’s (FBN) daytime and primetime programming. Throughout his career, Benson has served as a Media Fellow at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution and a Visiting Fellow at Harvard University’s Institute of Politics.

“We are thrilled to be deepening our relationship with KTTH and its legions of loyal, informed listeners in greater Seattle,” said Benson.

As part of the lineup shuffle, KTTH also adds FOX News Radio’s “FOX Across America with Jimmy Failla” to weekday overnights from midnight- 3 a.m.

KTTH’s new lineup starting January 1, 2024, will provide listeners with thoughtful coverage on election issues heading into the campaign season.

Bryan Suits 6:00-9:00 a.m.
Dan Bongino 9:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
Guy Benson 12:00-3:00 p.m.
Jason Rantz 3:00 p.m.-7:00 p.m.
Ben Shapiro 7:00 p.m.-8:00 p.m.

Mobile-Pensacola Radio: Bill Black To Retire At WKSJ

iHeartMedia Mobile/Pensacola’s 95 WKSJ, #1 For New Country, haa announced the retirement of Bill Black. Bill’s last day on-air will be January 30, 2024.

Bill Black’s career began in 1978 and he has been intricate to the fabric of 95 KSJ since 1992. Bill spent most of his time in middays, including the past three years in the afternoons with Shelby Mitchell. Over his 45-year career, Bill has devoted his time to raising funds and awareness for St. Jude Children’s Hospital.

Bill Black
“It’s been an amazing run these past almost 45 years of radio employment, and the last 31 as part of iHeartMedia and 95 KSJ. I’ve had the honor to introduce amazing performers to our Mobile, AL, audience and watch as their careers skyrocketed. My staff has always been more like family and we have cared and carried one another every day,” said Bill Black. “My greatest joy was back in 1998 when I decided to become a member of the St. Jude family. 95 KSJ has raised millions of dollars for St. Jude Childrens Research Hospital, aiding in their goal of Finding Cures and Saving Children. 95 KSJ and St. Jude will always have a special place in my heart. A special thank you to my Market President Ronnie Bloodworth, Tony Travatto and brand manager Rod Phillips for allowing me to steer the 95 KSJ ship my way for all these years.”

“If you have ever spent time with Bill, you either laughed or found out just how passionate he was for helping the children of St. Jude. Being in radio, we have a responsibility to entertain and serve our communities. Bill did both for over 45 years. Thank you, Bill, for being one of the most genuine human beings I know” said Ronnie Bloodworth, iHeartMedia Market President.

“While we are extremely happy for Bill and proud of all he’s accomplished, we are sad for the iHeartCountry team as we say goodbye to one of the legends. said Rod Phillips, EVP Programming iHeart Country. But we know we’ll see him again soon at another KSJ country show.

Westwood One Sports To Air Army-Navy Game

CUMULUS MEDIA’s Westwood One, the largest audio network in the U.S., will present exclusive national audio coverage of the Army-Navy Football Game presented by USAA. One of college football’s most legendary rivalries, this year's game will be broadcast live from Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, MA, on Saturday, December 9, 2023, at 2 p.m. ET.

John Sadak (play-by-play), Ross Tucker (analyst), and sideline reporter Tina Cervasio will bring all the tradition, pageantry, and excitement of the 124th meeting between the Army Black Knights and Navy Midshipmen to listeners nationwide. Jason Horowitz will host the pregame, halftime, and postgame shows.

Westwood One’s coverage of the game will air on affiliates nationwide and will be streamed live on The broadcast will also be available via TuneIn, SiriusXM, the Varsity Network app, and on Alexa-enabled devices. In addition, the game will be broadcast on the American Forces Radio Network in more than 170 countries and nearly 200 military ships at sea.

For more information on Westwood One Sports’ NFL programming, contact Ryan Maguire at or (212) 824-2994.

🎧Join the Westwood One Sports community on Facebook and Instagram at @westwoodonesports and on Twitter at @westwood1sports.

12/8 WAKE-UP CALL: Gaza Residents Scramble For Basic Needs

Public order is breaking down as Israel’s military offensive dislodges Hamas’s control of the enclave. Palestinians are reporting cases of starvation and disease. The U.N. said its operations were near collapse and Israeli military restrictions have made it impossible to distribute aid anywhere beyond the small area along the Egyptian border. In the southern city of Khan Younis—where intense fighting risks putting Israel on a collision course with the Biden administration—people broke into a U.N. warehouse and took food supplies. The rapid deterioration of basic living standards adds to a humanitarian crisis that will be the subject of a U.N. Security Council meeting tomorrow.

➤CONGRESS TO PROBE 3 UNIVERSITIES: The House Committee on Education and the Workforce is opening an investigation into Harvard University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the University of Pennsylvania and plans to request documents related to the schools’ policies and disciplinary records. It could expand the probe to other schools. MIT said the school “rejects antisemitism in all its forms,” and will address the congressional committee’s questions. Harvard and Penn didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment about the investigation. The probe adds pressure on the institutions’ leaders. They testified to Congress earlier in the week that whether calls for genocide of Jewish students qualified as harassment depended on the context and whether that speech turned into conduct. Politicians, Jewish advocacy groups, students and donors criticized the response.

➤UNIVERSITY PRESIDENTS FEEL THE HEAT: Three university presidents who testified before lawmakers about their handling of antisemitic incidents on college campuses now face a congressional investigation after attempting to clean up their comments in the face of widespread backlash. Lawmakers Tuesday questioned Harvard University President Claudine Gay, University of Pennsylvania President Liz Magill and Massachusetts Institute of Technology President Sally Kornbluth about efforts to combat antisemitism since the Israel-Hamas war began in October.   

After the House Committee on Education and the Workforce hearing, the presidents primarily drew ire for refusing to say whether calls for the genocide of Jews violates school policies on bullying and harassment.  Gay during the hearing said such hateful speech is “personally abhorrent” to her and against Harvard values. Whether that speech violates the school's code of ethics, though, she said depends on context.

A day later, Harvard posted a statement from Gay on X, formerly Twitter, clarifying her position. “There are some who have confused a right to free expression with the idea that Harvard will condone calls for violence against Jewish students,” Gay said in her statement Wednesday. “Let me be clear: Calls for violence or genocide against the Jewish community, or any religious or ethnic group are vile, they have no place at Harvard, and those who threaten our Jewish students will be held to account.”

Also on Thursday, Ross Stevens, founder and chief executive officer of Stone Ridge Holdings Group, a financial-services firm, informed Penn in a letter that he would cancel $100 million of Stone Ridge shares held by the university if it didn’t replace President Liz Magill. The letter was delivered hours after some board members met virtually to discuss the current controversy involving the president. There was no formal vote, but attendees were overwhelmingly supportive of Magill, according to a person in attendance.

Reuters Photojournalist
➤NEWS AGENCY ACCUSES ISRAEL OF KILLING JOURNALIST: In what two human rights organizations concluded was probably an intentional attack and war crime, an investigation revealed Israeli tank fire killed a Reuters video journalist and injured six reporters on Oct. 13 in Lebanon, the news agency said Thursday. Videographer Issam Abdallah, 37, who had covered wars for years, was filming Israeli shelling less than a mile away from the border with Lebanon when a round hit a group of journalists from different agencies, killing Abdallah, Reuters said. A second strike less than 40 minutes later severely injured AFP photographer Christina Assi, 28. Reuters said its investigation included conducting interviews with more than 30 sources, reviewing extensive photos and video footage as well as studying evidence from the site. 

➤UNLV SHOOTING DETAILS EMERGE: The gunman who killed three people Wednesday on the campus of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas before dying in a shootout with police was a college professor who had previously applied for a job at the university and was turned down, according to The Associated Press. The shooter, who formerly worked at East Carolina University in North Carolina, did not seem to be targeting students, the AP reported, citing police. The rampage began just before noon Wednesday on the fourth floor of the university's Frank and Estella Beam Hall. The gunman, who has not yet been identified by police, was killed by police a short time later. A fourth victim is in critical condition.

➤TEXAS JUDGE PERMITS EMERGENCY ABORTION:  A judge on Thursday ruled a woman in Texas can obtain an emergency medically indicated abortion, marking the first such intervention in the state since before Roe v. Wade was decided 50 years ago. After the U.S. Supreme Court in 2022 overturned Roe, the landmark case that made abortion legal nationwide, Texas instituted an abortion ban with few exceptions, including life-threatening complications. The Center for Reproductive Rights filed the case Tuesday on behalf of Dallas mom of two Kate Cox, her husband, and her OB-GYN. Cox is 20 weeks pregnant and her unborn baby has Trisomy 18, a lethal genetic condition, and her doctors have said that continuing the pregnancy poses grave risks to her health and fertility.

➤HUNTER BIDEN CHARGED WITH TAX CHARGES: Hunter Biden was indicted on nine tax charges in California on Thursday as a special counsel investigation into the business dealings of the president's son intensifies against the backdrop of the looming 2024 election. The new charges — three felonies and six misdemeanors — come in addition to federal firearms charges in Delaware alleging Hunter Biden broke a law against drug users having guns in 2018. 

He had been previously expected to plead guilty to misdemeanor tax charges as part of a plea deal with prosecutors who said he failed to pay taxes on $4 million in personal income in 2017 and 2018. Defense attorneys have signaled they plan to fight any new charges. The agreement imploded in July after a judge raised questions about it. It had also been pilloried as a “sweetheart deal” by Republicans investigating nearly every aspect of Hunter Biden's business dealings as well as the Justice Department's handling of the case.

CEO: 10M+ Have Signed Up For X In December

More than 10 million people have signed up for X in December, X CEO Linda Yaccarino said in a post on the social media platform on Thursday.

This comes as the company, formerly known as Twitter, risks losing as much $75 million in advertising revenue by the end of the year as major brands pause their marketing campaigns on the platform, according to the New York Times.

X, which does not regularly release user data, could not immediately be reached for comment on how the December sign-ups compared to average or why Yaccarino disclosed the figure. Billionaire owner Elon Musk said in July the site had 540 million monthly users.

Several companies, including Apple, Disney (DIS.N), Warner Bros Discovery (WBD.O), Comcast (CMCSA.O), Lions Gate Entertainment (LGFa.N), Paramount Global (PARA.O), and IBM (IBM.N) said in November they were pausing their advertisements on X.

Musk cursed advertisers that fled the platform after he agreed with a user who falsely claimed Jewish people were stoking hatred against white people.

A report from watchdog group Media Matters found ads from major companies next to X posts that supported Nazism. The platform filed a lawsuit in late November against Media Matters accusing it of defamation.