Saturday, June 15, 2024

Radio History: June 16

➦In 1934...Radio pioneer Edwin H. Armstrong transmitted FM signal 70 miles from Empire State Building to Long Island.  Armstrong (1890–1954) was an American electrical engineer who invented wideband frequency modulation (FM) radio.  He patented the regenerative circuit in 1914, the superheterodyne receiver in 1918 and the super-regenerative circuit in 1922. Armstrong presented his paper, "A Method of Reducing Disturbances in Radio Signaling by a System of Frequency Modulation", (which first described FM radio) before the New York section of the Institute of Radio Engineers on November 6, 1935. The paper was published in 1936.

As the name implies, wideband FM (WFM) requires a wider signal bandwidth than amplitude modulation by an equivalent modulating signal; this also makes the signal more robust against noise and interference. Frequency modulation is also more robust against signal-amplitude-fading phenomena.

➦In 1941...Front Page Farrell, a radio serial, first aired on Mutual Broadcasting System from 1941 to March 13, 1942, and on NBC from September 14, 1942, to March 26, 1954. The episodes broadcast on Mutual originated at WOR, making the program the first live serial that Mutual broadcast from New York City.  It was produced by and starred Richard Widmark.

Charles Farrell, Gil Stratton Jr. "Freddie", and Gale Storm
➦In 1952...“My Little Margie” on CBS-TV debuted as a summer replacement for “I Love Lucy” in 1952. The series, starring Gale Storm and Charles Farrell, aired original episodes on CBS Radio concurrently with the TV broadcasts from December 1952 through August 1955.

➦In 1962...Bob Lewis aired his first show on WABC 770 AM, New York. He stayed on for about 8 years.

Lewis died in January 1987 at age 49.

Bob ‘Bobaloo’ Lewis was best known as one of the “All Americans” on 77 WABC. Lesser known was the fact that he was also heard on the FM side. WABC 95.5 FM was a Progressive Rock station.

The format was called “Love” and featured album cuts from Jimi Hendrix, The Doors, The Who, and many more similar artists which would become the staples of AOR and later, Classic Rock stations.

In 1970 he moved to WCBS FM and in `72 to WNEW-FM.

➦In 1968...Jackson Armstrong premiered on CHUM 1050 AM, Toronto.

Jack Armstrong
Big Jack Armstrong, born John Charles Larsh in Durham County, NC, began his radio career at WCHL in Chapel Hill, North Carolina in 1960 at the age of 14 as an after school and weekend job. He also worked at WCDJ in Edenton in the summer when his family would go back home during summer break. At some point, he worked for WSSB in Durham, but the time frame is unclear.

Upon graduating from high school in 1964, Larsh moved to Atlanta, where he got an FCC First Class engineer's license, while working on the radio at WDJK. His parents enrolled him in Guilford College in Greensboro in the pre-med course. Larsh dropped out almost immediately, having gotten a radio job at WCOG.

In early 1966, WAYS-AM in Charlotte had begun 24 hour operatios. The FCC required that any station must have an engineer on duty at all times the station was on the air. When Larsh applied for a job there, the station quickly saw an opportunity to fill two sets of shoes with one person, since Larsh already had a First Class license. He was hired to fill the overnight shift.

Charles Barkley: One More and Done

Charles Barkley Intends To Retire

Charles Barkley, part of the highly popular, award-winning "Inside the NBA" studio show, said Friday night that the 2024-25 season will be his last with TNT and that he won't be joining any other network beyond that, either.

"I ain't going nowhere other than TNT," Barkley said on NBA-TV following the Dallas Mavericks' Game 4 victory over the Boston Celtics on Friday night. "But I have made the decision that no matter what happens, next year is going to be my last year on television. And I just want to say thank you to my NBA family. You guys have been great to me. My heart is full with joy and gratitude."

The NBA has been negotiating its next media rights deals, which would begin in the 2025-26 season. While the league hasn't announced what the deals will look like, Disney/ABC/ESPN, Amazon, NBC and Warner Bros. Discovery have been vying for what's reported to be three available packages of games and affiliated content worth an estimated $76 billion to the league over a decade.

"I hope the NBA stays with TNT, but for me personally, I wanted you guys to hear it from me ... I wanted to tell my NBATV and TNT family that I'm not going to another network, but I'm going to pass the baton to either Jamal Crawford or Vince Carter or you Steve (Smith)," Barkley said.

"But next year, I'm going to just retire after 25 years, and I just wanted to say thank you. And I wanted y'all to hear it from me first."

InfoWars Final Liquidation

Alex Jones’ personal bankruptcy has been converted to a formal liquidation, meaning a trustee will decide how Jones will pay down $1.5 billion in defamation judgments.

Jones and families of Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting victims who he defamed have for months been unable to agree on how he will pay them. The families won their state defamation judgments against the right-wing conspiracy theorist and his media platform, Infowars, after he repeatedly called the 2012 school shooting a hoax.

Bloomberg reports US Bankruptcy Judge Christopher Lopez on Friday said Jones’ case doesn’t trigger any exceptions to the law that would bar it from being converted to a Chapter 7 liquidation. Lopez declined a request from Sandy Hook families to include provisions laying out how the handover of Jones’ case to a trustee will proceed.

The judge said he would issue a “very clean order’’ on the matter.

A trustee could determine the future of Infowars’ bankrupt parent, Free Speech Systems LLC.

Even if Infowars is liquidated, Jones could potentially start a successor broadcast, Kyle J. Kimpler, of Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP, said on behalf of some of the Sandy Hook families during the hearing.

NFL Vetoed Less Expensive Sunday Ticket

The National Football League chose to distribute its Sunday Ticket package for "out-of-market" games though a satellite TV provider rather than a cable network to limit distribution of the bundle, an economist testified this week at the league's antitrust trial.

Courthouse News reports Daniel Rascher, a sports economist at the University of San Francisco, was called as an expert witness by Sunday Ticket subscribers who claim they had to pay inflated prices to watch their favorite teams play on Sunday afternoon because the NFL colluded with CBS and Fox, the networks that show the games for free over-the-air, to minimize competition for their broadcasts.

If the NFL had partnered with a cable TV provider for its Sunday Ticket package, it would have been available to as many as 90 million potential customers instead of the 13 million DirecTV subscribers, Rascher told the jury in downtown Los Angeles.

Instead, the league made an exclusive deal with DirecTV to protect CBS and Fox's ratings for the popular Sunday afternoon games, he said. The more people who watch the networks' broadcast, the more money they can demand for advertising slots on the telecast. This in turn means that the NFL can extract a premium from the networks for their exclusive right to show the live games.

FCC Proposes To Decrease Regulatory Fees

The FCC has proposed to decrease annual AM and FM radio regulatory fees for the second year in a row.

This move is part of the FCC’s strategy to align fee collection with its $390,192,000 budget while adapting to changes within the agency1. Broadcasters have until October 1 to pay their annual fees, following a public comment period ending on July 29. Late payments may result in additional charges, and pending applications could be delayed. 

Here are the proposed regulatory fees for this year:

  • AM stations: $0.10 per $1,000 of assessed value
  • FM stations: $0.15 per $1,000 of assessed value

Additionally, the FCC is reconsidering a 1993 policy that assumes broadcast stations that are dark or silent are experiencing financial hardship and therefore merit a regulatory fee waiver without needing to provide evidence. 

Moving forward, the FCC proposes requiring all stations requesting fee waivers to submit detailed financial documentation to demonstrate actual financial hardship. The proposal also revisits fees for various service providers, including space and earth station operators, reflecting broader shifts within the regulatory landscape and previous fiscal reallocations.

Taylor Swift's Eras Tour Has An Official End Date

Swifties are going to be feeling down bad with this news. During Taylor Swift's Liverpool concert on Thursday, she revealed that her Eras Tour will officially end in December, according to Entertainment Tonight.

Before playing "All Too Well (10 Minute Version) (Taylor's Version)," Swift marveled over the fact that the Liverpool show marked the 100th stop on her Eras Tour.

"Absolutely, that blows my mind," Swift said. "That doesn't feel like a real statistic to me because this has definitely been exhausting, all-encompassing, but the most joyful, most rewarding, most wonderful thing that has ever happened in my life, this tour."

CE0s: Trump Lacked Focus

Former President Donald Trump failed to impress everyone in a room full of top CEOs Thursday at the Business Roundtable’s quarterly meeting, multiple attendees told CNBC.

“Trump doesn’t know what he’s talking about,” said one CEO who was in the room, according to a person who heard the executive speaking. The CEO also said Trump did not explain how he planned to accomplish any of his policy proposals, that person said.

Several CEOs “said that [Trump] was remarkably meandering, could not keep a straight thought [and] was all over the map,” CNBC’s Andrew Ross Sorkin reported Friday on CNBC’s “Squawk Box.”

Among the topics on which Trump offered scant details were how he would reduce taxes and cut back on business regulations, according to two other people in the room who spoke to CNBC.

Meeting attendees and people who spoke with them were granted anonymity in order to speak freely about the private event.

The same CEOs who were struck by Trump’s lack of focus “walked into the meeting being Trump supporter-ish or thinking that they might be leaning that direction,” Sorkin reported.

Trump’s energy in the meeting was also noticeably subdued, according to two people who were in the room. At no time during his remarks was there any noticeable applause for Trump, two attendees told CNBC.

This was in contrast to Trump’s meeting earlier in the day with House Republicans on Capitol Hill. Attendees at that meeting told CNBC that the former president was animated and engaged and that Trump received several rounds of applause in separate meetings Thursday with both House and Senate Republicans.

“These were people who I think might have been actually predisposed to [Trump but] actually walked out of the room less predisposed” to him, Sorkin said.

FNC's Pete Hegseth Tops NYTimes Book List

A Fox news host has crushed Jen Psaki in book sales despite the former White House press secretary's book coming out weeks before his.

The Daily Mail reports Pete Hegseth's book 'The War on Warriors: Behind the Betrayal of the Men who Keep us Free' has sold 60,000 copies since it was released on June 4.

By comparison, ex-Biden spokeswoman Psaki's 'Say More' which was released May 6 has sold less than 22,000 total copies to date according to Bookscan.  Her MSNBC colleague Joy Reid's 'Medgar and Myrlie' has sold 28,469 copies since being published in early February. And Hegseth has also hammered CNN host Jake Tapper's 'All The Demons Are Here', which has sold just 15,427 copies in the 11 months it has been on sale.  

Hegseth's debut went to number one on the New York Times bestseller's list, his fourth time making an appearance on the weekly rankings.

It comes despite research by the Economist which suggests the newspaper's iconic bestsellers list is less likely to include works by conservative authors, even if they sell the same amount of copies as other works. Tech mogul Elon Musk is among those who sounded the alarm over potential political bias.

He tweeted that the NYT is 'pure propaganda' after the book 'Troubled', the book which exposes the hypocrisy of the American elite by social critic Rob Henderson. failed to dent the listing despite healthy sales in its first week.

The NYT has never disclosed the metrics behind its weekly rankings leading other conservatives to believe they too have been targeted. Other alleged victims include Ted Cruz, radio host Clay Travis and former White House press secretary under George W. Bush, Ari Fleischer.

TV's Greatest Dad? Happy Father's Day

By Adam Buckman

Long ago, I was a party to the creation of an innocuous “fax poll” aimed at enlisting reader participation in a vote for “The Greatest TV Dad Of All Time.”

It was a pre-Father's Day contrivance not unlike this TV Blog.

To the amazement of us all, the winner was Al Bundy, patriarch of the dysfunctional Bundy family on “Married … with Children,” the great Fox comedy series from the 1980s and ’90s.

Played by Ed O’Neill (photo above), Al was the quintessential anti-Dad -- at the time, a new concept in TV dads.

Al was a Chicago-area shoe salesman who struggled with financial issues, his uncooperative family (Katey Sagal, Christina Applegate and David Faustino) and his life in general.

The other candidates in this poll were more or less predictable. All were archetypal, well-known icons of TV fatherhood.

They included (if memory serves) Ward Cleaver (Hugh Beaumont, “Leave It To Beaver”), Jim Anderson (Robert Young, “Father Knows Best”), Cliff Huxtable (Bill Cosby, “The Cosby Show”), James Evans (John Amos, “Good Times”), and possibly others such as Dan Conner (John Goodman, “Roseanne”), Herman Munster (Fred Gwynne, “The Munsters”) and Gomez Addams (John Astin, “The Addams Family”).

But Al Bundy possibly won precisely because he was the anti-Dad -- a character who readers and viewers of “Married … with Children” could relate to more than the others.

Radio History: June 15

➦In 1910...David Rose born in London (Died at age 80 – August 23, 1990). He was a songwriter, composer, arranger, pianist, and orchestra leader. His best known compositions were "The Stripper", "Holiday for Strings", and "Calypso Melody".

David Rose
He also wrote music for many television series, including It's a Great Life, The Tony Martin Show, Little House on the Prairie, Highway to Heaven, Bonanza, and Highway Patrol under the pseudonym "Ray Llewellyn." Rose's work as a composer for television programs earned him four Emmys.  In addition, he was musical director for The Red Skelton Show during its 21-year run on the CBS and NBC networks.

In Hollywood, Rose formed his orchestra, doing a twice-weekly radio show for Mutual Broadcasting System called California Melodies, writing all the broadcast arrangements. He worked his way up to becoming music director of the Mutual network. Rose's first try at composing was his hit song "Holiday for Strings". During World War II, Rose entered the Army first meeting Red Skelton while both were enlisted. Skelton asked Rose to become the conductor for his Raleigh Cigarette Program. Rose joined the cast in 1948 and worked with Skelton on his television show for over 20 years.

➦In 1917...Blind Country musician and songwriter Leon Payne was born in Alba Texas.

Leon Payne
He is perhaps best known for his hits “I Love You Because,” and “You’ve Still Got A Place In My Heart.”   He began his music career in the mid-1930s, playing a variety of musical instruments in public, and later performing on KWET radio in Palestine, Texas, starting in 1935.

He also had a stint playing with Bob Wills' Texas Playboys in 1938. Payne was a regular working musician at Jerry Irby’s nightclub in Houston, Texas. He joined his stepbrother, famed songwriter Jack Rhodes, and formed Jack Rhodes and The Lone Star Buddies in 1949. They performed regularly on the Louisiana Hayride show in Shreveport, Louisiana. He was later on the Grand Ole Opry.

He died from a heart attack Sep 11, 1969 at age 52.

➦In 1923...Erroll Garner born (Died at age 53 – January 2, 1977) He was a jazz pianist and composer known for his swing playing and ballads. His best-known composition, the ballad "Misty", has become a jazz standard. Scott Yanow of Allmusic calls him "one of the most distinctive of all pianists" and a "brilliant virtuoso."  He received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame at 6363 Hollywood Blvd.

Erroll Garner
Garner began playing piano at the age of three. His elder siblings were taught piano by Miss Bowman. From an early age, Erroll would sit down and play anything she had demonstrated, just like Miss Bowman, his eldest sister Martha said.  Garner was self-taught and remained an "ear player" all his life, never learning to read music.

At age seven, he began appearing on the radio station KDKA in Pittsburgh with a group called the Candy Kids. By age 11, he was playing on the Allegheny riverboats. At 14 in 1937, he joined local saxophonist Leroy Brown.

He played locally in the shadow of his older pianist brother Linton Garner. Garner moved to New York City in 1944.

➦In 1945...NBC Blue Network becomes the American Broadcasting Company.

The company’s history traces to 1926, when the Radio Corporation of America (now RCA Corporation) and two other firms founded the National Broadcasting Company (NBC) to operate a nationwide radio broadcasting network.

NBC expanded so rapidly that by 1927 it found itself with an excess of affiliates in the same cities, so it split its programming into two separate networks, called the Red and the Blue networks.

After the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) declared in 1941 that no company could own more than one radio network, NBC in 1943 sold the less-lucrative Blue Network to Edward J. Noble, the millionaire maker of Life Savers candy, who initially renamed it the American Broadcasting System before settling on the name the American Broadcasting Company, Inc. (ABC).

ABC was the smallest of the major radio networks and distinguished itself by hiring popular singer Bing Crosby to perform on a weekly variety series. As a precondition for his employment, Crosby required that he be allowed to prerecord the program for later broadcast; as a result, ABC became a pioneer in the field of magnetic recording.

➦In 1966...Capitol released the Beatles' newest US album, a compilation of sorts entitled Yesterday and Today, featuring a bizarre cover by arty photographer Robert Whitaker where the group, dressed in butcher smocks, is surrounded by decapitated baby dolls and raw meat.

Friday, June 14, 2024

Chicago Radio: WERV Moves To Classic Alternative

Alpha Media has announced the transformation of WERV 95.9 The River from Classic Hits to Classic Alternative, a move that positions the station at the forefront of the next major trend in radio formats.

Phil Becker,  Alpha Media's EVP of Content, elaborated on the strategic shift: "Classic Alternative is a natural extension of Classic Rock. Just as throwback hip-hop stations tapped into a rich vein of nostalgia for 90s rap and R&B about ten years ago, we believe Classic Alternative will do the same for the alternative hits of the 90s. There's a valuable audience in Chicagoland that's been overlooked, and 95.9 The River is poised to fill that gap with a format that resonates deeply with listeners who grew up on this music. We anticipate this will be one of the nation's hottest new formats for those who execute it properly."

In conjunction with this format change, Alpha Media announced that Todd Nuke'Em, renowned for his work with X96 in Salt Lake City, will be joining 95.9 The River as the station's Content Director. Todd will also continue his responsibilities at Broadway Media's X96.

WERV 95.9 FM (2.85 Kw)

"I am beyond excited to join 95.9 The River and help shape its new identity as a Classic Alternative station," said Todd Nuke'Em. "The 90s alternative era was a groundbreaking time in music, and I'm thrilled to bring that energy and spirit to Chicagoland.” Scott Mcay will continue to host morning drive and Nick Jakusz remains in market and in afternoon drive. Artie Fufkin, also of X96 fame, joins as the evening host.

Orlando Radio: Norsan Media To Acquire JVC Stations

JVC Broadcasting has announced that it would sell their Orlando stations, including WFYY, to Norsan Media for an undisclosed amount. The station will flip to a Spanish-language format upon the sale closure. The buyer is one of the Southeast’s foremost Hispanic media companies. And, it is paying $4.5 million less than what the seller acquired the properties for in two separate transactions made over the last decade.

The deal includes Conservative Talk station “Florida Man Radio” 103.1 WFYY in Windermere and WDYZ 660 AM in Altamonte Springs, along with the translator 105.5 W288CJ in Oviedo. JVC acquired the stations in 2011.

Norsan plans to switch these stations to Spanish-language formats. This strategic move allows Norsan to connect with the thriving local Hispanic community in Orlando.

Norsan Media owns and operates over 40 signals across 8 markets. 

103.1 FM Coverage Area

JVC Broadcasting will retain its stations in Long Island NY and Fort Walton Beach and Ocala FL.

Philly Radio: NFL Hall To Honor Eagles Voice Merrill Reese

The Pro Football Hall of Fame announced Thursday Merril; Reese, the longtime radio voice of the Philadelphia Eagles will receive its 2024 Pete Rozelle Radio-Television Award.

“Each year, the Hall of Fame recognizes an individual who has dedicated their career to improving radio and television in professional football, and this year’s recipient, Merrill Reese, represents exactly what we look for when we talk about who’s made a big impact in broadcasting,” said Jim Porter, president of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, in a statement.

The Eagles' 2024-2025 campaign will be Reese's 48th consecutive season as the team's radio play-by-play announcer. The Philadelphia Business Journal reports former Eagles wide receiver Mike Quick has been his partner in the broadcasting booth since 1998.

After serving in the U.S. Navy as a public affairs officer, Reese began his radio career as a sportscaster for WPAZ in Pottstown calling high school football games. He next worked at WBCB in Levittown, where he currently serves as co-owner. In the early 1970s, he worked at different Philadelphia radio stations, doing morning sports on WWDB and pregame and postgame Eagles shows on WIP.

In 1977, Reese provided color commentary alongside Charlie Swift, who had called Eagles games since 1969. During a morning show with WWDB, Reese received the news that Swift had died and WIP wanted him to fill in as the lead play-by-play sportscaster.

Reese, 81, will be honored during the 2024 Pro Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Week that culminates with the Class of 2024 enshrinement ceremony on Aug. 3 at Tom Benson Hall of Fame Stadium in Canton. Former players being inducted into the Hall of Fame this year are Dwight Freeney, Randy Gradishar, Devin Hester, Andre Johnson, Steve McMichael, Julius Peppers, Patrick Willis.

During his career, Reese has received numerous awards and recognition, including: Pennsylvania Sportscaster of the Year, Lindsey Nelson Award for Excellence in Sportscasting, and his induction into the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame, Temple University Communications Hall of Fame and Overbrook High School Hall of Fame.

Past winner of the Pete Rozelle Radio-Television Award include broadcasters Pat Summerall, Dick Enberg, John Madden, Chris Berman and Al Michaels.

Netflix Needs Production Help For Christmas Day

Netflix has been reaching out to broadcasters this week in the hopes of finding a partner to produce the NFL games it will air on Christmas Day this year, according to people familiar with the matter. Netflix will show two games on Christmas Day this year, followed by at least one matchup in both 2025 and 2026, the company announced last week.

CNBC reports this is Netflix’s first real foray into traditional live sports, driven by the company’s ambitions to grow its advertising tier. The company signed a deal earlier this year with WWE to be the home for its live “Raw” events, but Netflix dubbed that deal as “sports entertainment.” Unlike WWE, Netflix’s deal for Christmas NFL games doesn’t come with a full production team. That’s left the streamer looking for help.

Netflix has been in touch with the broadcasters that currently air NFL games, including Disney's ESPN, Comcast's NBCUniversal and Paramont Global's CBS Sports, said the people familiar, who asked not to be named because the discussions have been private. Disney won’t produce the games because it already has college football obligations the same day, two of the people said.

In-depth discussions haven’t begun with the other broadcasters, but Netflix’s options may be somewhat limited.

Fox and CBS Sports already produce various games in different regions each week, which could make taking on additional games for Netflix a burden, some of the people said.

Concert Swifties Trigger Earthquake Readings

Taylor Swift’s three nights of sold-out concerts in Edinburgh, Scotland, triggered earthquake readings up to nearly four miles from the show venue, according to the British Geological Survey, the country’s national earthquake monitoring agency.

And the financial boost to both the city and the entire country is expected to be seismic, too, with Swift’s Eras Tour set to add an estimated £1 billion ($1.27 billion) to the British economy, according to CNBC citing research from U.K. bank Barclays.

Edinburgh’s Murrayfield Stadium saw record-breaking attendance over the concert weekend as the American megastar serenaded glitter-clad fans for roughly 3½ hours each night on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

“The activity was mainly generated by fans dancing in time to the music and reached its peak at 160 beats per minute (bpm) during ‘…Ready For It?’, where the crowd was transmitting approximately 80 kW of power,” BGS wrote in a report, adding that that was “equivalent to around 10-16 car batteries.”

Weekend Listening: 'Chachi Loves Everybody' Releases New Podcasts

Benztown, a global leader in radio imaging, voiceover, programming, podcasting and jingles, announces the release today of two new episodes of Chachi Loves Everybody, an original podcast produced by Benztown and hosted by Benztown President and audio brand builder Dave “Chachi” Denes. The episodes feature Chachi’s recent sit-down with Tony Coles, President of Multi-Cultural Business and Development for iHeartMedia and President of iHeartMedia’s Black Information Network (BIN), and with radio industry titan, Steve Newberry, CEO of Quu, a company pioneering in-car visual display technology for radio stations.

To listen to the new podcast episodes, visit:

Chachi Loves Everybody takes listeners with Denes – better known as “Chachi” – as he sits down for candid conversations with radio’s legends, master brand builders, up-and-comers, and innovators in the burgeoning audio space, revealing the true stories behind their successes and their insights into building iconic brands through audio.

Chachi’s first guest is Tony Coles, an accomplished broadcasting executive with over 35 years of experience in the radio industry. He currently serves as the President of the Multi-Cultural Business and Development for iHeartMedia and is the President of the Black Information Network (BIN). Known for his dedication to community service and industry leadership, Tony also holds notable positions on the boards of the NAB and RAB leadership Committee, Big Brothers Big Sisters of America, and the Library of American Broadcasting Foundation (LABF).

Tony takes listeners through his remarkable journey from humble beginnings in Ohio to becoming a top executive at iHeartMedia. Through engaging anecdotes and insightful commentary, Tony shares the highs and lows of his career, the impactful mentorship he received, and his dedication to fostering the next generation of industry leaders.

In this episode of Chachi Loves Everybody, Chachi talks to Tony about:His Insights from his radio career and success, including his journey from small market radio to management and leadership roles in radio.
  • Thoughts on a father's tough love and its lifelong impact
  • The impact of Dave Robbins on Tony's career
  • Embracing fear and learning from failure
  • Balancing priorities and learning in high-stakes leadership
  • Launching a news network for the Black community amid challenges
  • The importance of mentorship and community engagement in broadcasting
  • And more!
Chachi’s second guest, Steve Newberry, is a seasoned radio broadcasting executive who is currently CEO of Quu, a company pioneering in-car visual display technology for radio stations. Starting his career at just 21, he purchased his first radio station, leading to an expansive career in radio and broadcasting. He is the founder and Chairman of Commonwealth Broadcasting Corporation, which grew to operate 35 radio stations. Newberry has chaired the board of the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB) and held the position of Executive Vice President of Industry Affairs and Strategic Planning for NAB. His contributions to the industry have earned him notable accolades such as the Distinguished Kentuckian Award and the NAB's National Radio Award.

With a career spanning over four decades, Newberry shares with Chachi and his listeners captivating stories and valuable lessons learned over his four-decade radio career. From acquiring his first radio station at 21 to navigating the complexities of the NAB and leading innovative ventures at Quu, Newberry's experiences are both inspirational and educational.

On this episode of Chachi Loves Everybody, Chachi talks to Steve about topics including:
  • Building a radio station from scratch in Kentucky
  • How a partnership with a former governor led to growing a 35-radio station group
  • His experience as a consultant moving to full-time EVP at NAB, navigating political relationships and advocacy in Washington, DC
  • His challenges as an entrepreneur, the importance of family support, and his biggest lessons learned from managing radio stations in small markets
  • The value and impact of enhancing radio ads with visuals for better listener retention
  • Transitioning from NAB to CEO of Quu amid COVID-19 challenges
  • The vital role of radio in community safety and healing
  • The importance of mentorship and paying it forward

6/14 WAKE-UP CALL: Musk Has $48B Reasons To Be Motivated

Tesla shareholders voted to reapprove Elon Musk’s multibillion-dollar pay package. Approval of the company’s proposal was announced at Tesla’s annual shareholder meeting in Austin, Texas. The EV maker’s board had argued that the compensation plan was needed to motivate Musk to continue to lead the world’s most valuable automaker long term. In January, a Delaware judge ordered the entire plan—now valued at roughly $48 billion—rescinded, saying the prior approval process in 2018 was deeply flawed because of Musk’s close ties to several board members. The court also said Tesla had failed to prove that shareholders had been sufficiently informed about the deal. Shareholder reapproval doesn’t override the judge’s decision, but it gives the company’s lawyers some leverage in challenging the judgment. Tesla is trying to persuade the Delaware court to reverse the ruling, and it also has vowed to appeal the decision.

➤CEASE-FIRE TALKS GOING NOWHERE: Months of diplomacy between Israel, Hamas and mediators from the U.S., Egypt and Qatar have failed to produce agreement even on the outline of a deal that would stop the fighting and free Israeli hostages in Gaza. That’s fueling unprecedented public discontent with the militant group that seized power in Gaza almost two decades ago. Support for Hamas as rulers has fallen to 46% from 52% over the past three months, according to a survey of more than 700 residents of the enclave by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research. Hamas didn’t respond to a request for comment.

➤SCOTUS PRESERVES MEDICATION ACCESS:  The Supreme Court on Thursday unanimously preserved access to a medication that was used in nearly two-thirds of all abortions in the U.S. last year, in the court’s first abortion decision since conservative justices overturned Roe v. Wade two years ago. The justices ruled that abortion opponents lacked the legal right to sue over the federal Food and Drug Administration’s approval of the medication, mifepristone, and the FDA's subsequent actions to ease access to it. The case had threatened to restrict access to mifepristone across the country, including in states where abortion remains legal.

➤WSJ REPORTER ORDERED TO STAND TRIAL: American journalist Evan Gershkovich of the Wall Street Journal will soon stand trial in the Russian city of Yekaterinburg on charges of spying for the CIA, Russian authorities said Thursday, even as they continued to disclose no evidence to support the accusations. Gershkovich, 32, was arrested in March 2023 while on a reporting assignment for the Journal in Yekaterinburg and accused of espionage by the Federal Security Service, or FSB. If convicted, he faces up to 20 years in prison. Gershkovich, the Journal and U.S. officials repeatedly have rejected the charges as baseless. Russian prosecutors, announcing that they had finalized an indictment, said in a statement that they had “established and documented” that Gershkovich “collected secret information” about the Uralvagonzavod military factory in the Sverdlovsk region while “on assignment from the CIA.”

➤REBELS TIE DOWN U-S NAVY: It was just after 9 p.m. when radar operators aboard this U.S. Navy destroyer in the Red Sea spotted a tiny arrow on their screens: a missile hurtling toward them at five times the speed of sound. The Jan. 9 attack was one of the largest maritime battles the U.S. has faced since World War II. Houthi rebels in Yemen that day launched 18 drones and cruise missiles along with the ballistic missile at the Laboon and three other American destroyers, a U.S. aircraft carrier and a British warship in an attack that unfolded over a dozen hours. Yemen’s Houthis have launched hundreds of attacks, and American military officials see no end in sight.

đŸ’¸PRICES DROP: Wholesale price increases fell in May, the latest sign that inflation pressures in the United States may be easing as the Federal Reserve considers a timetable for cutting interest rates. The Labor Department reported Thursday that its producer price index — which tracks inflation before it reaches consumers — declined 0.2% from April to May after rising 0.5% the month before, pulled down by a 7.1% plunge in gasoline prices. Overall, it was the biggest drop in producer prices since October.

'Other Side of Midnight' Adds WCCO, K-DAWN

Two Audacy stations. WCCO, Minneapolis, and K-DAWN, Las Vegas, add Red Apple Audio Networks’ “The Other Side of Midnight with Frank Morano,” the fastest growing overnight show in the nation, which airs live from 1am to 5am ET, Monday through Friday.

WCCO in Minneapolis is a 50,000 Watt clear channel station, and K-DAWN in Las Vegas is the radio station that put overnight legend Art Bell on the map.

“I’m incredibly grateful to be on both of these great radio stations. I’ve dreamt on being on the radio in Minnesota ever since Jesse Ventura ran for Governor. It’s great to be on a station that has so many independent thinkers,” said Morano. As far as K-DAWN goes, Morano said, “I’m absolutely thrilled to be on the air in Las Vegas, a 24/7 city. It’s great to talk to an audience in a city that’s up all night.”

“The Other Side of Midnight with Frank Morano” is also heard on KMOX, St. Louis; WCBM-AM, Baltimore; WFDF-AM Detroit; and more.

“We’re thrilled to add these two great affiliates to The Red Apple Audio Networks” stated Chad Lopez, President of Red Apple Media and 77 WABC. “Listeners tell us they can’t go to sleep because stay up to hear what Frank is going to say next!”

Red Apple Audio Networks syndicates several programs from its studios at flagship WABC Radio, NY, a steady top ratings leader in News/Talk. The talent and programs currently offered include The Cats Roundtable with John Catsimatidis, Cats & Cosby, The Larry Kudlow Show, The Rita Cosby Show, The Judge Jeanine Pirro Show, The Greg Kelly Show, Sundays with Sinatra with Joe Piscopo, The Other Side of Midnight with Frank Morano, and more.

WHCA Rebukes President Biden

The White House Correspondents’ Association issued a rare and surprising rebuke of President Biden on Thursday after he complained for the second time in as many weeks that reporters are not asking questions on topics he wants to talk about.

In a statement issued moments after Biden wrapped up his press conference with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in Italy, the correspondents’ association made it clear that “there are no preconditions regarding question topics.” 

“Any leader may prefer that reporters ask only one question or ask only about a topic that is of most interest to the president or another world leader, but a free press functions independently,” said the statement by WHCA President Kelly O’Donnell of NBC News.

“WHCA would welcome more opportunities to pose a range of questions to the president in a press conference setting,” the statement continued, bemoaning the lack of media interaction by Mr. Biden.

The WHCA is composed of multiple news outlets that cover the White House and the president, including The Washington TimesThe Washington Times.

During Thursday’s press conference, Biden complained that reporters never “play the rules,” because they ask questions about topics that diverge from what he wants to talk about. 

The first question at the press conference was asked by Colleen Long of the Associated Press. She asked Biden whether his son, Hunter Biden, was a political target. Hunter Biden was convicted by a federal jury in Delaware this week of three felony charges related to illegally purchasing a gun in 2018 and lying about his crack cocaine addiction. 

Biden declined to answer the question, beyond saying he wouldn’t pardon Hunter Biden and that he was proud that his son had overcome his addiction.

Josh Wingrove, a Bloomberg reporter, asked the second question, on whether Hamas was working in good faith toward a peace deal with Israel.

“I wish you guys would play by the rules a little bit,” Biden said, raising his voice. “I’m here to talk about a critical situation in Ukraine and you ask me about another subject. I’ll be happy to answer it in detail later.”

Everett WA Radio: After 60-Years Charlye Parker To Sign-Off

Charlye Parker
Charlye Parker was one of the first female radio hosts in Washington State history. She will announce her retirement after 60 years in radio on a Farewell show with “Mitchell and Moffett” on Friday, June 14th from 6-9 am on Classic Country KXA (1520 AM, 101.1 FM and streaming).

“It may be hard to believe these days, but it wasn’t so many years ago that broadcasting was a man’s arena and there was no place for women in it,” said Parker.

Parker has worked at radio stations KTRC in Santa Fe, KRZY Alburquerque, KWYZ and KMPS in the Pacific Northwest and KHAY in Ventura, California where she spent 21 years as the morning host. She was a program director from 1977 to 1988 for KGHL and KIDX in Billings, Montana, one of the first women to do so at the time.

The Everett Post reports Parker grew up in the Midwest in the late ’50s during the time Rock ‘n’ Roll was being tested over the radio. She fell in love with music and knew she wanted to play records.

Parker has always had a love for the Pacific Northwest, being pulled here throughout her lifetime.  She first came to the PNW in the early ‘70s as a photojournalist for the Pro Rodeo Cowboy Association.

Program Director for Everett station KXYZ Tom Lewis hired her in the ‘70s giving her the title “Snohomish County’s First Lady of Country.”

In 2012 Parker planned to retire after moving to the North Sound but fell in love with Classic Country KXA. She has worked for KXA Radio for 12 years as the weekend morning host.

“From the moment I met her she felt like family,” KXA Co-host Anita Moffett said.

“Charlye has been a mentor and an inspiration to me since I moved to 94.1 KMPS in 1982!  It was a full-circle moment when she joined our team at Classic Country KXA.  Charlye is one of the most relatable, fun, and caring personalities you will ever hear on the radio.  Her show is all about the music and the listeners and she will be missed,” KXA Programming Consultant Becky Brenner said.

KXA radio began in 2011, playing Classic Country hits from the 50’s to 90’s. KXA broadcasts to the entire North Sound. For more information on KXA radio, see here:

X's Media Matters Lawsuit To Trial in April 2025

Social media platform X's lawsuit against media watchdog group Media Matters will head to trial on April 7, 2025, a U.S. District judge ordered on Thursday.

X, which is owned by billionaire Elon Musk, sued Media Matters in November, accusing the group of defamation after it published a report that said ads had appeared next to posts on X praising Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party.

"Media Matters stands behind its reporting and looks forward to winning in court," Media Matters President Angelo Carusone said at the time.

Radio History: June 14

➦In 1908...John Scott Trotter born (Died at age 67 from cancer – October 29, 1975). He was an arranger, composer and orchestra leader, best known for conducting the John Scott Trotter Orchestra which backed singer and entertainer Bing Crosby on record and on his NBC Kraft Music Hall show on NBC Radio from 1937 to 1946.  He also worked with Vince Guaraldi scoring some of the early Peanuts cartoons for TV.

Burl Ives

➦In 1909...Burl Ives born (Died from oral cancer at age 85 – April 14, 1995) was an singer and actor of stage, screen, radio and television.

Ives began as an itinerant singer and banjoist, and launched his own radio show, The Wayfaring Stranger, which popularized traditional folk songs. He also performed  on WBOW radio in Terre Haute, Indiana.  In 1942 he appeared in Irving Berlin's This Is the Army, and then became a major star of CBS radio.

In the 1960s he successfully crossed over into country music, recording hits such as "A Little Bitty Tear" and "Funny Way of Laughin'". A popular film actor through the late 1940s and '50s, Ives's best-known film roles included parts in So Dear to My Heart (1949) and Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (1958), as well as Rufus Hannassey in The Big Country (1958), for which he won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.

Ives is often remembered for his voice-over work as Sam the Snowman, narrator of the classic 1964 Christmas television special Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, which continues to air annually around Christmas.

Warren Harding -1922 (AP Photo)
➦In 1922...President Warren G. Harding, while addressing a crowd at the dedication of a memorial site for the composer of the “Star Spangled Banner,” Francis Scott Key, became the first president to have his voice transmitted by radio, via WEAR Baltimore. The broadcast heralded a revolutionary shift in how presidents addressed the American public. It was not until three years later, however, that a president would deliver a radio-specific address. That honor went to President Calvin Coolidge.

➦In 1924...WOKO signed on in 1924 IN New York City.  The station moved to Mount Beacon, N.Y., in 1928.  In 1930, moved to Albany, N.Y.  WOKO was the first radio station licensed to that city.

The station picked up he CBS affiliation in the city.  In the early 1940s, CBS moved to rival WTRY.  WOKO adopted a locally-based independent format, focused largely on music. It carried a middle-of-the-road music format in the 1960s before flipping to country.  In 1978, WOKO flipped to a disco format.  As the disco fad passed, WOKO returned to country in 1980.

WOKO tried an all-news format in 1982, changing its call letters to WWCN.  The station flipped back to the WOKO call letters in 1987 with an oldies format.

Barnstable Broadcasting bought the station in 1988 and used it to simulcast WGNA.  ABC Radio purchased the station in 2002 and flipped it to the Radio Disney format as WDDY.  The station went silent in 2013.

Harold Peary
➦In 1950...After 13 years on radio, Harold Peary played the title character in "The Great Gildersleeve" for the final time. It was a radio situation comedy broadcast from August 31, 1941 to 1958.

The series was built around Throckmorton P. Gildersleeve, a regular character from the radio situation comedy Fibber McGee and Molly. The character was introduced in the October 3, 1939 episode (number 216) of that series. The Great Gildersleeve enjoyed its greatest popularity in the 1940s. Peary played the character during its transition from the parent show into the spin-off and later in four feature films released at the height of the show's popularity.

After Peary. Willard Waterman took over the role for the next eight years on radio and for several years on TV.

Thursday, June 13, 2024

Philly Radio: Beasley Names New Market Head

Joe Bell has been replaced as Philadelphia market manager of Beasley Media Group by longtime sales executive Paul Blake.

The Philadelphia Business Journal reports a spokeswoman for Beasley would only say that Bell is no longer with the company. Bell could not be immediately reached for comment.

In his new role, Blake will report directly to Beasley Media President Bruce Beasley and oversee the company’s Philadelphia-based radio properties — rock station 93.3 WMMR-FM, classic rock station 102.9 WMGK-FM, sports talker 97.5 The Fanatic (WPEN-FM), pop station 95.7 BEN FM, country station 92.5 XTU (WXTU-FM) and Talk 860 (WWDB-FM). The entire cluster of stations is situated in Bala Cynwyd. He will also oversee Camden-based religious programming station WTMR 800-AM.

Naples, Florida-based Beasley owns 57 radio stations across the U.S.

Paul Blake
Blake has been with Beasley and predecessor Greater Media in Philadelphia since 2002. He had served as vice president and director of sales for the Philadelphia cluster since Beasley acquired Greater Media in 2016. He held a similar role when the cluster of stations was owned by Greater Media between 2006 and 2016 and was sales manager at WMMR for three years before that.

Prior to his time at Beasley/Greater Media, Blake was a sales professional for Clear Channel and Global Television Sports (1991-94). He earned an undergraduate degree in marketing from Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania (1989).

“I am deeply honored and thrilled to take on the role of Cluster Manager for Beasley Media Philadelphia,” said Blake. “I extend my heartfelt gratitude to the Beasley family for their unwavering trust and confidence in me. It is an incredible privilege to lead one of America’s premier groups of radio stations and digital content creators, and I look forward to continuing our tradition of excellence and innovation in the media industry.”

“Paul is the perfect person to take our Philly-based radio cluster to the next level,” said Beasley Media Group President Bruce Beasley. “His longstanding dedication, insight and leadership is the perfect fit to lead our team into the future. We are thrilled to have him on our team.”

How Americans Get News on Social Media

A Pew Research Center survey has been released which shows how Americans encounter news on four major social media platforms: TikTok, X (formerly Twitter), Facebook, and Instagram. 

Here are the key findings:

TV Ratings: ABC's WNT Tops Everyone In Broadcast, Cable

After extensive coverage former President Donald Trump‘s hush money trial, the three cable news networks experienced substantial declines as regular programming resumed post-verdict. MSNBC and CNN both saw double digit drops in primetime and total day, and Fox News similarly experienced drops in most of the measured categories. But FNC was also the only cable news network to see any week-to-week growth, picking up a total viewer gain in primetime.

Nielsen Live plus same-day data for the week of June 3 showed Fox News’ primetime lineup averaging 2.144 million total viewers and 216,000 viewers in the advertiser-coveted Adults 25-54 demo. The network was up in total viewers by +1%, but fell in the demo by -1% relative to the week prior.

Among all basic cable networks, Fox News landed in first place in total primetime viewers and remained in fourth place in the primetime demo. In total day, it continued to rank first in total viewers and moved from third to second place in the demo.

MSNBC’s primetime lineup averaged 1.156 million total viewers and 114,000 viewers in the A25-54 demo. It fell by double digits in both categories with drops of -23% and -27%, respectively. In total day, MSNBC averaged 759,000 total viewers and 78,000 demo viewers. As in primetime, the network saw precipitous drops of -22% in total viewers and -26% in the demo. Among all basic cable networks, MSNBC climbed to third place in total primetime viewers, but dropped from eighth place to 13th place in the demo.

CNN averaged 485,000 total viewers and 88,000 A25-54 viewers during primetime. Like MSNBC, CNN experienced double digit viewer losses with falls of -22% in total viewers and -23% in the demo. In primetime, CNN slid to ninth to tenth place with total viewers and fell from 17th to 19th place in the demo, tied with the Hallmark Channel.

Fox had 12 out of the 15 most-watched cable news shows of the week, led by The Five (3.184 million viewers at 5 p.m. ET). MSNBC took the remaining three spots, led by The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell (1.632 million viewers at 10 p.m. ET) coming in at No. 8. FNC also had 12 of the top 15 most-watched cable news shows in the demo, with Gutfeld! (304,000 viewers at 10 p.m. ET) climbing back to the top spot. The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell (151,000 viewers at 10 p.m. ET) was once again MSNBC’s most-watched show, placing 12th.

Chicago Area Radio: Tim Richards Named PD At Free Country

Alpha Media Chicago recently made an exciting move in the broadcasting industry. They rebranded their legacy Country station, WCCQ, as Free Country 98.3. But that’s not all—the station is now also broadcasting on a second signal at 102.3, providing wider coverage for Country music fans in the Chicagoland area.

Tim Richards
Joining the newly created Free Country team is veteran programmer and consultant Tim Richards as the Content Director. Richards remarked, "The opportunity to lead the content strategy for Free Country Chicago while continuing my work with KUPL and the Smith Richards Collective is incredibly exciting."

Phil Becker, EVP of Content for Alpha Media, emphasized the unique advantages of radio in today’s media landscape. He highlighted that radio is completely free—free to listen, free to win, and free to subscribe. While streaming services and tech companies charge for music and content, Free Country at 98.3 and 102.3 is dedicated to providing Country music and fan experiences to Chicagoans at no cost. "With Tim's leadership, we're poised to create a unified and robust Country music experience for our listeners."