John Mason, longtime Detroit radio personality and more recently famous as the voice of "Dee-troit basketball" serving as the Pistons Palace public address announcer, parted company Thursday with Radio One-owned WDMK-FM (105.9). Mason's contract expires today; his last show was Wednesday. The pact was believed to be in the million-dollar-a-year range and was signed in 2001 when he left WJLB-FM (97.9), his Detroit radio home since 1983... Contract ends; Mason leaves 105.9 (Fri 7/28)
Quarterly boost is second in row; audience grows by nearly 15,000 In Spring 2006
WDET-FM 101.9, Detroit Public Radio, saw another increase in listeners as indicated in the Spring 2006 Arbitron Survey. In this most recent ratings period (April - June), the station saw a net gain in listeners of 14,800. This follows an increase of 11,400 listeners that WDET saw in the Winter 2006 rating period (January - March). These recent audience increases follow programming changes the station made in December 2005. "We're glad to see our audience continue to grow," said Michael Coleman, WDET General Manager. "We're building a flagship public radio service for the Detroit community, and we welcome the thousands of new and returning listeners to the WDET family."
Listener gains in Spring 2006 were most notably present during the 10am to 3pm midday slot on weekdays, which includes programs "News & Notes with Ed Gordon," " Democracy Now!," "Here & Now," "BBC World Have Your Say" and "Day To Day." Other listener increases were seen on weekends for local music programs "Folks Like Us with Matt Watroba," "Arkansas Traveler with Larry McDaniel" and "Deep River with Robert Jones." Other weekend favorites such as "This American Life," "CarTalk" and "The Tavis Smiley Show" and late night music programs "Alternate Take with Liz Copeland," "Michael Julien's Global Mix" and "The Ralph Valdez Program" also saw gains in audience. "It's very encouraging to see the numbers go up two periods in a row," said Allen Mazurek, WDET Program Director. "We continue to monitor and evaluate every aspect of our service and to provide programming that the community listens to and supports.
WDET will air a two-hour special presentation of the annual "Best Of The Detroit Jazz Festival" highlighting many of the extraordinary performances from the 2005 festival on Friday, July 28 from 7pm to 9pm during Destination Jazz: The Ed Love Program and again on Sunday, August 20 from 11am to 1pm.
This special has been broadcast on radio stations across the country and has been heard around the globe on Voice Of America. It is hosted by WDET's Ed Love and includes performances by such jazz greats as McCoy Tyner, Ron Blake, Gerald Wilson, David "Fathead" Newman, Joey DeFrancesco, Charles McPherson, Dave Brubeck and many others.
An international gathering of smooth jazz artists including Japan's Keiko Matsui, Germany's Nils, England's Down to the Bone, America's Marion Meadows, Bobby Lyle and Paul Jackson, Jr., Canada's Alexander Zonjic and others are headlining the 11th annual “Jazz on the River” in Elizabeth Park in Trenton, MI the weekend of Aug 5-6. “The annual summer jazz festival attracts between 20,000 and 30,000 music lovers,” said Alexander Zonjic, artistic director. “For the 11th anniversary, we've put together a very special program of international and local acts.”
Here is the line-up for Jazz on the River 2006:
Saturday August 5th
1:00p - 2:00p JBElectrified
2:30p - 3:30p Bamm Davis
4:00p - 5:15p Nils (Smooth Jazz Guitar)
5:45p - 7:00p Marion Meadows (Sax)
7:30p - 9:00p Keiko Matsui (Jazz Keyboards)
Sunday August 6th
1:00p - 2:00p Norma Jean Bell & The All Star Band
2:30p - 3:30p Johnny Trudell Big Band
4:00p - 5:15p Bobby Lyle & Paul Jackson Jr. (Jazz keyboards & Jazz guitar)
5:45p - 7:00p Alexander Zonjic & Friends wsg/ James Lloyd
7:30p - 9:00p Down to the Bone (Award winning Smooth Jazz ensemble)
The event is free to the public. A donation of $5 is suggested for parking at the park. Free parking is available in downtown Trenton with a free shuttle to the entrance of the park provided by Smart Transportation. Shuttles can be boarded at the corner of Jefferson and West Road and at Jefferson and Elm. Elizabeth Park is located off of Jefferson, east of I-75, south of West Road in Trenton. Take I-75 south to the West Road exit and follow West Road to east Jefferson. Take Jefferson south into the park. The park will be open to the public on both days beginning at noon and will close after the final performance. For more information the public can call 734-261-1990 or visit www.waynecounty.com/parks.
In addition to serving as artistic director for four summer jazz festivals, Alexander Zonjic is the morning weekday host of Smooth Jazz V98.7 WVMV-FM radio in Detroit. He also performs about 100 concerts a year and recently released “Seldom Blues,” his 11th recording that bears the same name as his successful restaurant venture in Detroit.
Urban WJLB-FM 97.9 will present the Strong Inspiration Gospel Brunch, hosted by Deborah Smith Pollard, with special guest performance by Oprah Winfrey's Popstar Challenge Winner, Lashell Griffin this Sunday, July 30, 2006, from 11am to 1p.m., at Grand City Grille Restaurant, 3011 West Grand Boulevard, inside the Fisher Theatre. Admission is free and Sunday brunch is $22.00. Reservations can be made by calling Grand City Grille at (313) 556-9993.
“FM98-WJLB's Strong Inspiration”, hosted by Deborah Smith Pollard, airs every Sunday from 6 to 10a.m. on 97.9FM (WJLB). Deborah Smith Pollard has been heard on FM 98 WJLB as host and producer of "Strong Inspirations" since 1994. Having dedicated over 10 years of her career to inspire others through gospel; in 2005, Dr. Pollard was named Gospel Announcer of the Year during the 20th Annual Stellar Gospel Music Awards.