Chicago Tribune reporter Robert Channick spoke with WGN Radio President and manager Jimmy de Castro about yesterday’s announced decision to pull the plug on both it’s FM Sports/Talk experiment at 87.7 The Game (WGWG-LP) and the recently launched streaming venture, WGN.fm. As you’d probably expect, de Castro (pictured) cited economics as the driving force behind the decision to shutter both operations that were launched with a fair degree of fanfare some nine months ago. Tribune has a deal to operate WGWG through next September via an LMA with Venture Technologies Group, which owns the frequency. Asked what, if anything, will be airing on the 87.7 frequency come January 2015, de Castro (pictured) told the newspaper he really didn’t know yet but, “It’s not going to be sports, that’s for sure.” Read more (subscription required) HERE.
Meanwhile, Chicagoland Radio and Media reports on an announcement this morning by longtime Windy City radio personality Jonathan Brandmeier, in which he told listeners that despite the reported changes coming to his show’s two current Tribune-owned distribution platforms – 87.7 The Game (WGWG) and WGN.fm – his morning radio show will continue full speed ahead into the New Year, delivered digitally and online. ”We’ll live on at TuneIn.com and via the TuneIn app, and at BrandmeierShow.com,” said Johnny B. (pictured), who added that he remains in talks with Tribune and WGN Radio management about his future. “I would love to be able to put together a deal with the Tribune company. If it works out with the Tribune, I couldn’t be happier. That would be fantastic.” Read the full story HERE.
NTS MediaOnline Today hears rumors that a deal between Compass Media Networks and Dow Jones could be in the works that would allow Compass (which has handled affiliations and ad sales for the Wall Street Journal and MarketWatch Radio networks for the past year) to continue using Dow Jones’ northern New Jersey and DC broadcast studio facilities. Compass Media Networks has already announced it will takeover production of the WSJ Radio Network’s signature morning show, which has been dubbed with a new working title, This Morning with Gordon Deal. But could a deal to retain use of the WSJ studio facilities mean Compass is considering an expansion that would give the network the ability to assume production of more of the WSJ’s wide roster of financial and business news programs and features currently airing on a reported 600+ stations? Look for more details on this unfolding story next week in your regular daily afternoon updates from The Daily Digest of Talk Media.
Saga Communications-owned Newsradio 560WGAN/Portland, Maine is searching for a News Director to lead one of the state’s largest radio news teams, while maintaining and building upon its long track record of excellence. Responsibilities include: Hiring, training, coaching, and scheduling of news staff: overseeing news and traffic operations for all eight Portland Radio Group stations; coordinating storm and breaking news coverage; and maintaining and cultivating WGAN’s online and social media presence. On-air news experience helpful, as is familiarity with MediaTouch, Burli news software, CloseNow cancellation systems, Audacity, and WordPress. “Whether someone is looking for a change of scenery or looking to take the next step, I am looking at all news people,” says Portland Radio Group Ops Manager Chris ‘Mac’ McGorrill. “If you have a passion for news, email your resume and audio sample HERE.” (EOE)
Among the Wall Street Journal Radio Network newsroom staffers notified by Dow Jones that he’ll be eligible for some time on the beach come the end of this year, is veteran news anchor Bruce Vale. Bruce (pictured) is currently looking for his next challenge and is interested in hearing from friends and colleagues about opportunities HERE.
Hearst News/Talker WBAL/Baltimore and sister station WIYY-FM/98 Rock are looking for their next Director of Programming. We are home to the MLB Orioles, NFL Ravens, Navy and all things Baltimore. Hearst believes in people first, supported with the proper resources and an old-fashioned commitment to the community. Our culture is fast, fun, respectful and professional. Whether your comfort level is in News/Talk/Sports, Rock and big morning shows, or both, we’d love to hear from you. Send your cover letter and resume HERE. (EOE).
Got a gig open? Seeking your next opportunity? Email details and your contact information to us HERE and NTS MediaOnline Today will publish your information free-of-charge here in our weekly “Gig Alerts” as a service to all Talk media professionals.
In conjunction with Entercom News/Talker KJCE/Austin, nationally syndicated Talk radio host and New York Times best-selling author, Dave Ramsey, presented his Legacy Journey LIVE! event to a packed house in the Texas capitol yesterday (11/20) at Bass Concert Hall. Grabbing a digital souvenir from the event — held in the city where the unofficial motto is, “Keep Austin Weird” — are (L-R): ’1370 AM’ Promotions Director Aaron Hurd, Director of Sales Heather Baumli, Ramsey, Program Director Stephen Kerr, VP/Market Manager Alan Kirshbom and General Sales Manager Bob Woche.
In an interview that aired this morning on WFTL/Ft. Lauderdale, a local South Florida caller told mid-morning host Rich Stevens (pictured) that she, too, was a victim of sexual assault by legendary comedian and actor Bill Cosby. The woman — Therese Serignese, a now 57-year old, registered nurse from Boca Raton — claims that Cosby assaulted her in 1976 while she was visiting Las Vegas. “My younger sister and I were looking around the gift shop in the Hilton Hotel when a man came up behind me and put his hands on my shoulders and asked, ‘Will you marry me?’” Serignese told Stevens, noting she was 19-years old at the time of the alleged incident. “I turned around and instantly recognized that it was Bill Cosby. He was a big star, I mean anyone would have known him. We chatted for a few minutes and he invited me to come see his show that night, which I did, and then after the show someone came out and escorted me backstage to the ‘green room’ where there were a lot of other people. One-by-one everyone left until the end when it was just me and Bill Cosby left in the room. He stood in front of me with a glass of water and two pills and said, ‘Take these.’” Find out what Serignese says happened next HERE.
After taking time out for a brief coffee break, veteran Arkansas Talk radio personality Dave Elswick is returning to the local broadcast airwaves via The Voice 96.5 in Little Rock and 99.1 in Searcy, AR. This time around Dave (pictured) will serve not only as host of afternoon drive, but also Program Director. Elswick, who previously served a lengthy stint as PD of crosstown KARN, will assume his new programming duties at ‘The Voice’ and return to his familiar 3-7pm slot next Monday (11/24) … FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai is once again speaking out on the issue of free speech and the media. TheHill.com’s Mario Trujillo reports Pai told those gathered at the recently held Media Institutes awards dinner that he wants the FCC to dismiss any petitions that would prevent broadcasters from using the Washington Redskins team name on the air. While keeping his personal views on the NFL team’s name controversy to himself, Pai urged his fellow public officials to “not sound an uncertain trumpet when oft-offended opportunists urge us to undermine the First Amendment.” Read more HERE … ATTENTION: PLEASE UPDATE YOUR SCORECARDS! The date for the Broadcasters Foundation of America’s 2015 Golden Mike Award, honoring NAB President/CEO Gordon Smith, has been changed, The new date is Monday, March 16th. BFA made the change to accommodate a request from the National Alliance of State Broadcasting Associations, which had a conflict with the original date.
Envision Networks adds a dozen new affiliates for its syndicated, ten-hour holiday special countdown show, The Greatest Christmas Hits of All Time. The special is based on data compiled by Billboard magazine … iHeartMedia’s 1190 Talk Radio (KFXR/Dallas) adds FOX News Radio’s syndicated Tom Sullivan (pictured) to the station’s newly revised lineup. Sullivan’s NYC-based show now airs nightly from 8-10pm … Congrats to Jim Blasingame, host of the nationally syndicated Small Business Advocate as he marks the show’s 17th year on the air this week — 11 of those with his program’s current syndicator Talk Shows USA … Mobile audio service TuneIn expands its college basketball play-by-play menu, inking an expansion of its deals with IMG and Learfield Sports to carry the broadcasts for 85 men’s and 55 women’s college basketball teams, including 8 of the top 10 ranked programs in the nation. Each team will have its own personalized 24/7 TuneIn channel.
Chicago media reporter Robert Feder reports that Tribune is pulling the plug on its Sports radio experiment at 87.7 The Game (WGWG), and will also end the company’s talent deals with both Garry Meier and Jonathan Brandmeier. Read more HERE (subscription required to access full article) … Crain’s Detroit Business has named CBS Radio’s Motor City station cluster — including News/Talk WWJ and Sports/Talkers CBS Sports Radio 1270 (WXYT-AM) and 97.1 The Ticket (WXYT-FM) — as one of the city’s best/coolest place to work. Read more HERE … The Mentoring & Inspiring Women In Radio Group has opened applications for its 2015 Mildred Carter Mentoring Program. A total of four candidates from the radio broadcasting industry – within the sales, marketing, programming and digital disciplines – will be selected, with at least one spot designated for a programming candidate and one spot designated for a digital candidate. Get application criteria and instructions on how to apply HERE.