A post by Jaewon Kang for TheStreet.com says the radio biz is expected to experience a boost in political ad spending this fall, owing mostly to hotly contested local election races. “Unlike television, which has historically benefited from presidential races, radio tends to gain more from local races — yet another factor that will serve as a boon for players in the sector this year,” writes Kang. Read more HERE … Jeremy Poursine (right) will take over for Bruce Collins as Program Director for iHeartMedia’s WJBO and WLRO/Baton Rouge. Jeremy, who has been an APD for the last 12 years — the last ten of those spent working with iHeartMedia Mid-South Regional News/Talk/Sports Format Captain Jim Fisher at WRNO/New Orleans — takes the chair most recently occupied by Collins who is now Talk Operations Manager for Alpha Media/Portland, OR.
Former nationally syndicated Talk radio host Mike Reagan, says he want GOP candidates to “stop talking about my father.” In an interview with Dan Maduri this week on Genesis Communications-owned AM 820 News WWBA-AM/Tampa’s Florida Live, Mike says too many candidates throw the Reagan name out there as if it was a talisman to help them win among voters and the Reagan family has taken issue with those using it who didn’t even know the late President. “This is my name — this is my father’s name — and it’s being used by a lot of people out there,” Reagan told Maduri. “They never sat and had dinner with him, I didnt see them at the dinner table or at the Thanksgiving table. But yet they seem to know a lot about Ronald Reagan. I think a lot of them have recreated my father in their image and their likeness of who he was. I think I have every right to say, ‘Wait a minute, you are just going down the wrong road with what you are doing.'” Hear the full interview — including Mike’s take on presumptive GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump — HERE.
About 1,500 listeners were served at KFGO/Fargo’s 8th annual Summer Picnic, held yesterday (6/9) in the station’s parking lot. Staff hovered over hot grills while KFGO’s faithful fans lined-up to enjoy burgers, brats, chips, soda-pop, bottled water, potato salad and freshly-baked cookies, all served “on the house” as an annual thank-you to listeners from the Midwest Communications News/Talker. For the second year in a row, Bob and Linda Hunt of suburban Kansas City were cited for having traveled the farthest to attend KFGO’s yearly listener event. The couple drove eight hours to attend the picnic hosted by their favorite radio station, which they report they listen to daily at KFGO.com and via the station’s mobile app.
You may recall that presumed GOP presidential nominee Donald Trump and Salem Radio Network syndicated host Hugh Hewitt got into some verbal fisticuffs earlier in the current presidential campaign during an interview on Hugh’s radio show. Trump later called-out Hewitt again for his performance as a panelist questioning GOP candidates during early debates produced by CNN and Salem Media Group. Now a Trump advisor is calling for Hewitt — a longtime Republican — to be banned from the party’s upcoming convention after the talk host criticized Trump for comments he made about Judge Gonzalo Curiel (the judge overseeing the court case brought against Trump University). Hewitt also called for the GOP to ‘dump Trump’ at the Republican convention, replacing him with another candidate. Trump senior campaign advisor and social media director Dan Scavino called Hewitt a “hater” and said if he has any plans on attending the GOP convention in Cleveland (Hewitt says he’ll be there), “The RNC should ban him from attending.” The Daily Caller’s Derek Hunter has more details HERE.
Targeting conservative Talk radio has been pretty much standard operating procedure for many Democratic politicians and other critics since the format’s rise back in the early 1990s. But in what one might call a ‘biting the hand that feeds you’ moment, yesterday (6/7) U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) singled out Talk radio as the reason GOP voters have what he says are unrealistic expectations of their party leaders in Washington. In a story for the Washington Examiner, Rudy Takala reports that during a recent event hosted by the American Enterprise Institute, McConnell (left) responded to a question about this year’s tumultuous election season saying, “A lot of base voters have been really misled by a lot of talk show hosts and others about what’s achievable when you don’t have the White House.” The Senate leader’s criticism of Talk radio comes on the heels of recent remarks by President Obama, accusing “right wing” Talk radio and cable channels like FOX News of fomenting racial anger and lying simply to oppose him. It’s a pretty safe bet there will be even more criticism of conservative Talk radio and television as the presidential election heats up to a full boil in the weeks and months ahead.
Alpha Media/Portland, OR has tapped industry veteran Bruce Collins for the new role of Talk Operations Manager for News/Talk KXL, Sports/Talk KXTG, conservative talker KUFO, and the company’s Radio Northwest Network. Collins was most recently with iHeartMedia, where he held a number of positions during his tenure with the company, including News/Talk/Sports format captain and Program Director. Collins’ radio resume also includes prior stints in Cincinnati, Oklahoma City, Nashville, Atlanta, Columbus, Ohio, McAllen-Brownsville-Harlingen, TX and Baton Rouge. “What a wonderful opportunity Alpha Media has given me to lead their Talk stations in the beautiful city of Portland, Oregon,” said Collins about his new gig. “Alpha truly believes in staying connected to the community with their stations and they believe in being informative through live and local programming. I’m looking forward to working with the great teams at FM News 101 KXL, Sports 750/102.9 The Game and Freedom 970, and to calling Portland home.”
News, Talk and Sports radio stations across the country were awash in conversation about Muhammad Ali over the weekend, following last Friday night’s (6/3) announcement of the death of the legendary heavyweight boxing champion at age 74. In his hometown of Louisville,News/Talker WHAS devoted three hours of special programming dedicated to the champ on Saturday morning, with the conversation continuing on iHeartMedia Sports/Talk clustermate 790KRD the rest of the day and throughout the weekend. All of the major radio networks are in Louisville this week to cover Ali’s funeral and a number of events surrounding it (that’s ABC News Radio correspondent Ryan Burrow pictured, interviewing a mourner at Louisville’s Muhammad Ali Center). Meanwhile, Westwood One late night talk host Jim Bohannon will replay the original Mutual Radio broadcast of Ali’s second fight against Sonny Liston tonight on his nationally syndicated show. The 1965 bout famously saw Ali retain his heavyweight championship title with a “phantom punch” first-round knock-out that rocked the boxing world.
While Facebook was chock full of picture posts over the weekend from all sorts of people who had shared a moment with Muhammad Ali, among a number of photos we received in our inbox from radio folks who’d had a brush with ‘the champ’ over the years, this vintage photo sent to us by Ronn Owens — longtime mid-morning host at KGO/San Francisco — stood out above ’em all. “This picture has been hanging in my home for decades,” Ronn told NTS MediaOnline Today. “It was taken in 1970 or ’71 when I was hosting a show in South Florida at WKAT/Miami. Who could have predicted that years after sharing this moment together, we would also one day both end up with Parkinson’s Disease? I’ve been much more fortunate in the way it’s affected me, and I am so glad I have this picture to remind me of what a great guy he was, in addition to being a great interview.”
Drew Garabo, afternoon drive host on 102.5 The Bone (WHPT/Tampa) threw a party at the Cox Media Group FM talker’s studios over the weekend for some really amazing kids. The children — all battling childhood cancer — and their families were treated to lunch from Chick-fil-A, goody bags, an appearance by Tampa Bay mascots ‘Raymond,’ ‘Thunderbug,’ and ‘Rocky The Bull,’ and tours of the radio station. Garabo then presented each child with their very own iPad, with Apple “geniuses” standing by at the event to instruct the kids and help them get started on using their new tablets right out of the box. 102.5 The Bone listeners and clients were asked to donate to the Give Hope Foundation, which helped raise funds to secure the iPads. Meanwhile, WHPT morning host Mike Calta also got in on the action, helping raise over $13,000 to support the event during his wake-up show.
Centerpost Limited, the parent company to Youtoo America, BizTV and BizTalkRadio, has named Kelly Kantz (right) to the new position of Vice President of Programming. With over 25 years of experience in leadership, management, sales and marketing, most recently Kantz served as Senior Vice President of Programming Sales for Rural Media Group, parent company to RFD-TV, FamilyNet and Rural Radio. In her new gig, she’ll be responsible for managing the programming relationships and programming for Youtoo America, BizTV and BizTalkRadio. She’ll report directly to the company’s EVP Scott Miller who said, “We are excited to add Kelly’s experience and expertise to our team. She has a reputation of building strong relationships with programmers that lead to solid line-ups for the viewers and affiliates.” Reach Kelly at her new email address HERE.