Mike Austerman: August 2006 Archives

Detroit Free Press:

Fred McLeod, the longtime WDIV-TV (Local 4) sportscaster, is leaving the station later this year. He also won't return as FSN Pistons play-by-play man next season, media relations director Tim Bryant confirmed. "Fred has graciously agreed to continue in his role as a sports anchor and reporter at Local 4 for the next several months while we conduct a comprehensive search for his successor," WDIV news director Neil Goldstein said in an e-mail... McLeod leaving Local 4, Pistons broadcasts (Wed 8/2)



AllAccess.com:

Wendy Williams Debuts On WDMK/Detroit:
RADIO ONE Urban AC WDMK(105.9 KISS FM)/DETROIT, surprised no one, as they replaced veteran drivetime air personality JOHN MASON with SUPERADIO's syndicated WENDY WILLIAMS SHOW. WENDY debuted in afternoon drive yesterday (7/31). MASON's future plans are still up in the air. He had been with RADIO ONE since he left CLEAR CHANNEL Urban WJLB in 2001. (Tue 8/1)


Radio Disney Ups Esken:
RADIO DISNEY has upped WRDZ-A/CHICAGO Station Manager KARYN ESKEN to Regional Director with oversight of stations in several major markets, including NEW YORK, LOS ANGELES, CHICAGO, SAN FRANCISCO, DETROIT, DALLAS, and MINNEAPOLIS, reports the CHICAGO SUN-TIMES' ROBERT FEDER. ESKEN wil be based in CHICAGO. (Wed 8/2)

 

• New station WPEE FM 88.5 Gagetown/Bad Axe has been granted its license. The station has been reported on the air with at least some of its programming originating from religious LifeTalk Radio.


• Approved: The sale of Hot Adult Contemporary WKMJ FM 93.5 and Talk WMPL AM 920 Hancock from Victor Corporation to Bay Broadcasting.


• Adult Contemporary WCSY-FM 98.3 has been granted a construction permit to change its effective radiated power from 1,900 watts at 404 feet to 3,700 watts at 427 feet from a new tower location closer to Benton Harbor. The station will also change its community of license from South Haven to Hartford. When completed, the changes will give the station a stronger signal in Benton Harbor / St. Joseph. Oldies WHIT-FM 103.7 has also been granted a construction permit to change its community of license from Hartford to South Haven. WHIT will not be changing its facilities at this time.

 

Format changes: Week of Aug 2, 2006

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• Full-time Sports radio hit the air in Battle Creek on August 1st when the former Adult Standards WRCC 1400 AM switched to SportsRadio WBFN The Fan. The station features programming from Fox Sports Radio and Premier Networks' Jim Rome. WBFN is owned by Clear Channel.

Hi, my name is Bill Broderick and I'm a sports talk junkie. As an addict, living in Battle Creek, I would find myself explaining to people in my car why I was listening to barely audible, static-laden AM stations just to catch a little sports talk radio. But now my addiction can be fed by clear-sounding sports talk right here in the Cereal City... Here's to talkin' sports (Battle Creek Enquirer, Wed 8/2)

 

Detroit Free Press:

Stopping: WHTD-FM's (102.7) Russ Parr Bus Tour 6-10 a.m. Friday at the Fine Arts Theatre, 2952 Woodward, featuring free live performances from Ciara, plus Lil Scrappy, Rashad Morgan, Bohagan, Sammie, Southern Girl and Justin Clark... Names and Faces (Thu 8/3)



WDET wins journalism awards

WDETWDET-FM 101.9, Detroit Public Radio, was honored with five awards from the Metro Detroit Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ). These awards recognize excellence in local journalism, and add to the numerous awards the WDET news department has been honored with this year. WDET's 2006 SPJ awards are as follows:

General News Reporting: Second Place: Jerome Vaughn, "Delphi Worker"
General Feature Reporting: First Place: Celeste Headlee, "Margaret Garner"
Sports Reporting: First Place: Jerome Vaughn, "Hockey Canceled"
Regular Newscast: Third Place: Joan Silvi, "All Things Considered, December 13, 2005
Newscast"
Spot/Breaking News: First Place: Jerome Vaughn, "Rosa Parks' Funeral"

WDET is proud of its tradition of bringing the metropolitan Detroit community an in-depth, comprehensive local news service that wins awards year after year. "We feel a tremendous honor to be recognized by fellow journalists for our work," said Joan Silvi, WDET News Director and local host of All Things Considered. "The hard work of the news department is the result of our commitment to bring listeners the area's best radio news service."



“Design Your Own” engagement ring Internet contest nets “sparkling” results

WMGCGreater Media Detroit's Soft Rock Magic 105.1 (WMGC-FM) is integrating Internet technology with radio to garner "sparkling" results for its clients. In an effort to promote Ahee Jewelers “Design Your Ring” link on the company's website (www.ahee.com), Magic 105.1 encouraged listeners to create the ultimate “Magic-Ahee” engagement ring.

Ahee Jewelers' award winning designers selected three listener submissions each week from May 24th – July 14th, 2006. A total of 24 finalists were selected over 8 weeks. More than 9,700 ring design submissions were received over the eight week program. The campaign was supported on-air with a combination of both live and recorded commercials.

The grand prize winner was announced on the air on July 21st, 2006 during Jim Harper & The Magic Morning Show on WMGC-FM. Pamela Damico of Sterling Heights received a ladies Rolex bracelet watch valued at $3,100. In addition, her ring will be designed, displayed and sold as the official Magic-Ahee Engagement ring at the retailer's location in Grosse Pointe Woods.

“I am shocked that the Ahee website did not crash with the amount of submissions that they received on a daily basis in conjunction with the program," said Marcy Cyburt, General Sales Manager of WMGC-FM. She added, “This is a great example of how the web and radio can garner great results when working in unison.”

 

Detroit News:

Tracey Morris loves to read and knows how much she would miss it if her eyesight failed or arthritis in her hands prevented her from turning the pages. As a volunteer with the Detroit Radio Information Service for the past five years, Morris brings the joy of reading to the blind and others who can't easily read for themselves... Volunteer brings joy of reading to disabled (Fri 8/4)

 

Flint Journal:

If Flint radio was NASCAR, then Cars 108 (WCRZ-FM, 107.9) would be the points leader year in and year out. Cars cruised to another first-place finish in the local radio ratings compiled by Arbitron. Its 11.7 share for the spring ratings period just a fraction below its fall finish of 11.8. Flint is a two-book market, meaning Arbitron compiles ratings information in the spring and fall. The numbers, particularly in specific demographic categories (women 25-54, men 18-34), help stations determine their advertising rates. WCRZ, the adult contemporary music stalwart, is particularly popular with female listeners 25 and up. The station has kept the pedal to the metal for the better part of 15 years, finishing first in the 12-plus rankings (the broadest measurement of radio listenership) most of that time... WCRZ continues to top area radio stations (Fri 8/4)

 

Reprinted from the Sunday Oakland Press, August 6, 2006

By: Mike Austerman


On The Radio

When Public Radio WDET-FM (101.9) shifted its direction away from daytime music during toward its current weekday all-talk format late last year, the reaction was immediate – and loud. Fundraising goals were revised downward, favorite hosts left the station and protesters tried to get station owner Wayne State University to change the format back, overruling the decisions of station general manager Michael Coleman, who had directed the programming shift.

Now it appears that WDET’s new weekday lineup, along with restored weekend music programs like ‘Arkansas Traveler’ and ‘Folks Like Us’, is beginning to find its sea legs as for the second consecutive ratings book WDET’s listener totals have increased. The station reports a 14,800 listener increase in the spring of 2006, which followed a fall increase of over 11,000 listeners. Coleman comments, “We're glad to see our audience continue to grow. 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." If the station is able to generate the money it needs this fall during its next big fundraising drive, it’ll be a pretty safe bet that the changes Coleman implemented will be sticking around for a long time – much to the distain of those that preferred WDET’s old format.


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Another public radio station that is successfully finding an audience is classical-jazz WRCJ-FM (90.9), which celebrated its one year anniversary on August 1st. Behind program director and morning host Dave Wagner, WRCJ enjoys one of the most loyal audiences in the market with its listeners spending an average over of 6 hours tuned in each time. WRCJ is also the home former WDET’ers Ann Delisi and Chris Felcyn, who in addition to holding down the midday shift during the week hosts “The Listening Room” Sunday mornings from 10-11am – a show once heard on WDET for about 20 years.

Former classical WQRS-FM (105.1) host Jack Goggin, who possesses an encyclopedic knowledge and passion for film music, plans on returning to the air at WRCJ soon to bring back “Film Classics”, a show that aired on WQRS for nine years. Listeners will soon be hearing Goggin offering “film factoids” during other programming.

And for those of you that can’t hear WRCJ over the air, the station is working on an Internet stream of its programming – keep an eye on www.wrcj909fm.org for an announcement. Congrats to everyone at WRCJ and owner Detroit Public Schools on a great first year!


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While we’re on the topic of former WDET hosts, current Adult Alternative WQKL-FM (107.1) Ann Arbor morning jock Martin Bandyke is enjoying great success at his new radio home, helping push that station’s ratings up to their highest levels ever. “107 one” saw its overall numbers rise by 1.5 share to 4.8, making it the 4th most listened to station in A-squared. The jump in adult listeners age 25-54 was even more dramatic, moving from a daylong 3.0 share to 7.3. Bandyke’s first morning report card shows he helped improve the age 25-54 rating of WQKL from 2.3 to 5.7. While the station is obviously more commercial than WDET, it’s still a great listen for those that might miss the old sound of ‘DET, if you’re lucky enough to be in western Oakland County where the station is easier to receive. For the computer savvy, visit www.annarbors107one.com to listen via the Internet.


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Quick hits: John Mason, well known for his work as the Detroit Pistons’ public address announcer, is without a radio gig for now as he’s left Adult Urban WDMK-FM (105.9). In his place afternoons is a syndicated show hosted by Wendy Williams based out of New York City … New to weekend mornings at Sports WDFN-AM (1130) is ‘At Home’ with Gary Sullivan, a syndicated show farmed in from Cincinnati, replacing Glenn Haege who hosted his last WDFN shows last weekend … Mega congratulations to Specs Howard School of Broadcast Arts VP Dick Kernen who recently marked 50 years in the broadcast biz. He was the first program director of Rock WRIF-FM (101.1) back in 1968 and remains a true visionary in the field … Todd Mundt, morning voice at Public WUOM-FM (91.7) and chief content officer for Michigan Public Media, exits for a major role with Iowa Public Radio … Somewhere in Time spins back the clock to the pre-1935 era when the top dance orchestra in America was the Dorsey Brother's Band, featuring the sax of Jimmy and the trombone of Tommy, at 6pm today on WMUZ-FM (103.5).


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Columnist Mike Austerman has covered radio for The Oakland Press since 2001.

 

Grand Rapids Press:

It is a whole new way to watch television. Digital-cable viewers in Grand Rapids can program their favorite television shows to fit their schedules if they are Comcast customers. Many options are available for storing and retrieving programs for whenever you want to watch them with Comcast's new On Demand service ... New WYCE station manager: Eclectic is the best way to describe the programming on community radio station WYCE-FM (99.1), according to Kevin Murphy, the new station manager as of this week. "We play stuff you won't hear anywhere else (and) from five different genres -- folk, blues, jazz, rock and World Beat," said Murphy, of Grand Rapids. Before coming to the WYCE post, Murphy has worked as a digital artist, animator, video producer, writer and reporter in the print, entertainment and news media... On-demand service keeps making inroads (Wed 8/2)


This week, we spoke with Michael Grey, 31, a WKLQ-FM (107.3) personality, whose show airs 2-7 p.m. daily, about his tastes in pop culture... Your take: Michael Grey (Fri 8/4)


Grand Valley State football will be televised to the entire country this fall, but it will be difficult to see in the Lakers' own back yard. A three-year television and broadband partnership between the National Collegiate Athletic Association and the College Sports Television Network will feature 80 live Division II events, including three football games on Thursday nights and six basketball games during the 2006-07 school year... Grand Valley football scores national TV exposure (Fri 8/4)



 

Lansing State Journal:

Listeners soon could be tuning in to the same Lansing radio station for up to four different programming signals. Led by Michigan State University's student-run WDBM and public broadcaster WKAR, mid-Michigan stations are upgrading their equipment to begin broadcasting in digital HD Radio. "There's potential to double or triple the radio streams in Lansing without anyone paying - other than buying the radio," said Curt Gilleo, station manager at WKAR-AM and FM in East Lansing. Thanks to the compression of data that's possible with digital technology, a station that uses HD Radio can send up to four different signals while still using the frequency it already broadcasts on... Radio dials up digital: Stations can send multiple signals on same frequency (Tue 8/8)

 

Detroit Free Press:

First, it was Big League Chew. Now, another Tigers-based fad is sweeping the state. The Rod Allen Game, featuring the Tigers' television analyst on FSN, has made it into on-line encyclopedia Wikipedia.com. To play, all you have to do is watch Tigers telecasts and be thirsty. When Rod breaks out one of his catchphrases, consult the game rules and take the corresponding number of sips of your beverage of choice... Tigers fans wet whistle listening to Rod (Wed 8/9)



Detroit News:

The merger between the WB and UPN marked the birth of a new kind of broadcast TV. While I think the new network's name -- The CW -- is silly, I do like the idea of two small entities coming together and consolidating the most popular shows in small-screen entertainment geared toward the 18-to 34-year-old viewer. The only problem is that all this unity left soon-to-be former WB affiliates such as Channel 20 in the dark -- that is, until Fox emerged with a new operation. Called My Network TV , it is supposed to challenge the CW for those same youthful audiences by airing original, telenovela-inspired soaps, five times a week, 52 weeks a year. Channel 20, whose new call letters are WMYD, will make the switch to My Network TV on Sept. 5... Channel 20 picks up evening Fox soaps (Wed 8/9)

 

• Rock CKUE FM 95.1 Chatham has applied to move its Windsor transmitter, also located at FM 95.1 to FM 100.7 to alleviate interference near Windsor from the main CKUE transmitter near Chatham. If approved, the move to 100.7 would also include a power increase from 1,950 watts to 3,840 watts (maximum effective radiated power 9,000 watts/antenna height of 74.5 meters). The CRTC is accepting interventions/comments on the application through September 7th.

CRTC application

 

Detroit News:

If you live anywhere near Woodward Avenue, the fragrance from hundreds of leaded gas-guzzlers is no doubt wafting over your patio every evening. The actual Dream Cruise isn't until Aug. 19, but starting Monday and running through Aug. 18, WOMC-FM (104.3) will broadcast live from 7 p.m. to midnight from Duggan's, the Woodward Avenue cruising hangout just north of 13 Mile in Royal Oak. On Aug. 19, there won't be an emphasis on music; instead, the station will be the "eyes and ears" of listeners, reporting on the cruise, says program director Steve Allan. Dick Purtan and Purtan's People will broadcast from 8 to 11 a.m. at Nine Mile and Woodward in Ferndale; Rick Hunter is on the air from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. from Memorial Park, 13 Mile and Woodward in Royal Oak; Dana Masucci will be at the Flagstar Bank at 15 Mile and Woodward from 1 to 3 p.m.; Tom Ryan takes the mike from 3 to 5 p.m. from the new CVS drugstore at 13 Mile and Woodward; and Masucci returns from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Papa Joe's market on Woodward in Birmingham. Art "Bozo" Cervi and "Top Hat John" will do color commentary all day on the vintage rides... WOMC plans mass Dream Cruise coverage (Thu 8/10)


Quick, name your favorite disc jockey The odds are 10-to-1 that you probably don't have one. Today's radio jocks are a hard-working lot, but, with few exceptions, there really aren't any personalities out there. That definitely wasn't the case in the 1960s when AM ruled, and your favorite station's top jock rode "shotgun" as you cruised Woodward. "It didn't matter if you were a 'frat' or a 'greaser;' there was nothing cooler than catching a light and hearing your favorite song coming from all the cars around you," said former Royal Oak resident Sue Avery, who now lives in Maine. "I remember tuning into Lee 'The Horn' Allen and his 'fine tone ashtray.' He always signed off with a salute to Frank Sinatra." Dick Purtan -- indisputably the heaviest hitter in the history of Metro Detroit radio -- was with legendary station WKNR-AM (Keener Radio) back then and remembers it well... Celebrity DJs are a thing of the past (Thu 8/10)


The question was short and sweet: What do you like/dislike about TV sportscasts in Metro Detroit? There were tons of e-mail responses, which showed there are a lot of unhappy campers in TV land armed with active remotes... Local sportscasts get thumbs down (Thu 8/10)



AllAccess.com:

Condolences To WYCD's Dan Masucci:
ALL ACCESS sends out our condolences to CBS Country WYCD/DETROIT Continuity Dir. DAN MASUCCI and his family on the loss of his mother, ROSE, (8/4). (Thu 8/10)

 

XYT Fantasy Football Convention coming Aug 12

WXYTSports WXYT-AM 1270 will present its Second Annual Fantasy Football Convention from 11 a.m. until 7 p.m. on Saturday, August 12th at Buffalo Wild Wings in Westland, 6677 N. Wayne Rd. in Westland. The Convention will provide Fantasy Football players with all the information they need to get the winning edge in their fantasy football league. Attendees to the Convention will receive a number of resources to help dominate their Fantasy Football league, including a draft kit from CBS SportsLine, a commemorative t-shirt, a Fantasy Football magazine plus the chance to win prizes, including Lions pre-season tickets, a BBQ Grill and a 42” DLP HDTV. Admission to the Fantasy Football Convention is free.

The highlights of the day will include ESPN Football Analyst Merrill Hoge teaching the In's and Out's of how to draft a championship team. He will provide insight on this year's top players, sleeper picks, players that should have break out years and also players that may be total busts! He will be ready to answer all of your Fantasy Football questions and help you get ahead of the rest of the teams in your league this year. During the convention, 1270 XYT's Tom Mazawey and Steve Silverman, plus Paul Prouty from CBS Sportsline will outline the different fantasy football leagues and the best way to manage them. Roundtable discussions with columnists Rob Parker, Drew Sharp and Pat Caputo will showcase the upcoming football season. Also on the agenda is a special ex-Lions roundtable featuring Marc Spindler and Lomas Brown.

Members of the 1270 XYT on-air team will give the audience their thoughts on Fantasy Football and the NFL. This segment will include Doug Karsch, Art Regner, Mike Valenti and Terry Foster. An additional afternoon highlight will include a candid discussion about the future of the Detroit Lions and the NFL in general with Lions Broadcasters Dan Miller, Jim Brandstatter and Tony Ortiz, plus Lions beat writers Mike O'Hara and Curt Sylvester. Attendees will also catch a special live broadcast of “The Big Show” with Doug Karsch and Art Regner from 11am – 1pm and the “Sports Inferno” with Mike Valenti and Terry Foster will be broadcasting live from Tigers post-game until 7pm.



Great Lakes Radio Consortium Wins PRNDI Award

The Great Lakes Radio Consortium, a production of Michigan Radio, has been honored with an award from Public Radio News Directors Inc., for the news feature “How Long Do You Keep a Polluting Heap?” These national awards, judged and presented annually, recognize outstanding public radio news reporting at local stations.

“How Long Do You Keep a Polluting Heap?,” produced by GLRC Reporter Rebecca Williams, was recognized in the soft feature category. “Polluting Heap” is Rebecca's personal story, beginning when she finds herself in the middle of her own environmental dilemma. Her car, an '89 Toyota Camry, was leaking oil. How much oil, you might ask? The answer is: about a quart every two weeks. As it happened, it would cost $650 to fix the leak. In this story, Williams explores a question many of us eventually face: What do you do when doing the right thing for the environment is going to cost you a lot of money?

Receiving a PRNDI award is a prestigious accomplishment. With this, the GLRC exerts itself as one of the best producers in the country. Other winners include: WNYC-New York, WBUR-Boston, WUNC-Chapel Hill, and KUOW-Seattle.

“This is a tremendous accomplishment,” said Station Manager Jon Hoban. “This award from the leaders in news reporting is a testament to the work that Rebecca Williams and the GLRC are doing each week.”

The Environment Report from the GLRC is a production of Michigan Radio, the public radio service of the University of Michigan. The Environment Report is a modular environmental news service that produces six to eight environmental stories each week. These stories are distributed free of charge to more than 140 public radio stations in 20 states.

 

Lansing State Journal:

Bob Olson, an upbeat presence on WJXQ (106.1- FM) for 16 years, has left the station. The move was amicable, Dave Johnson, general manager of the Mid-Michigan Radio Group, said Wednesday. "Bob Olson is one of the greatest guys I've ever worked with." Olson agreed it was a friendly parting. "I've gone through four ownerships," he said. "This is the second building I've been in. I think I've had four or five general managers. And I've loved every minute of it." Now he's leaving to focus on his business doing voice work... Olson leaves WJXQ (Thu 8/10)

 

Orth joins MRN staff

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A former Traverse City mayor with over three decades of Michigan broadcasting experience has joined Michigan Radio Network. Phill Orth joined the Lansing-based news network August 9 as its marketing consultant.

Orth has been involved in broadcast radio since 1970, including stints in Traverse City, Midland, St. Ignace, Chicago, Detroit, and even Mexico. He most recently served as general manager of seven Northern Michigan radio stations.

The Traverse City native has also been active in politics over the years, serving as mayor of his hometown for one term each in the 1980s, 1990s and most recently from 2001 to 2003. He also served as a city commissioner there for 15 years and ran for the Michigan State House of Representatives twice.

"For a number of years now, I've been familiar with MRN and have dealt with them from the other side," Orth said. "I've always thought they provided a unique and high-quality product that is well-respected in this state. I'm honored and thrilled to be working for and representing them."

MRN General Manager Dennis Mellott also looks forward to integrating Orth into the network's daily operations. "With his background and experience, I think Phill will make a great addition to the organization," he said.

Michigan Radio Network, owned by Detroit-based Saga Communications, provides news and sports information to more than 50 stations throughout Michigan.

 

Grand Rapids Press:

In their first season together in the FSN Detroit broadcast booth, Mario Impemba and Rod Allen had the pleasure of calling an unforgettable 43-119 season for the Detroit Tigers in the summer of 2003. Yeah, real pleasurable. You can't forget a disaster of that magnitude. It just makes Impemba and Allen further appreciate the Tigers' stunning accomplishment as the best team in baseball with a 76-38 record this season... Broadcast partners enjoying Tigers ride (Thu 8/13)


His concert was as laid back and candid as he is. Rising country artist Luke Stricklin, the 23-year-old Arkansas native with the deep voice and youthful face performed for about an hour at Thunder 94.5's second of three Thunder on the Mall concerts Wednesday. Some 2,200 attendees, according to Thunder program director Bud Ford, relaxed to Stricklin's legato twanging, old-school-country vocalizations ... Hot FM parties at the B.O.B.: After 20 years at WLHT-FM and playing "the great light rock," the morning team of Dave Jagger and Geri Jarvis introduced a Top 40 rock band Thursday night at the B.O.B. The Saving Jane concert was the first big gig for WHTS-FM (105.3), which calls itself "105.3 Hot FM" and plays Top 40 hits. And it was Dave and Geri's first big show in front of a new audience. What was it like introducing a rock band? "They were all very nice," Jagger said after meeting the band before the concert. "Despite all the tattoos." The Hot FM coming-out party attracted about 150-200 fans at the B.O.B...Thunder on the Mall country shows under way (Sun 8/13)


Detroit Tigers radio broadcaster Dan Dickerson has experienced some of the ball club's best times and worst times in recent seasons. The Tigers finished a dreadful 43-119 during his first full season behind the microphone in 2003, after he replaced Hall of Famer Ernie Harwell. In what has been a magical summer of 2006, however, Dickerson, who began his broadcasting career in Grand Rapids in the 1980s, has watched the Tigers come full circle to post the best record in Major League Baseball... Tigers fans hit fever pitch (Sun 8/13)



AllAccess.com

WSNX Gets People To Lick Hairy Animal:
Last week, Top 40 WSNX/GRAND RAPIDS, MI's "HOLMES & THE FREAK SHOW" had four listeners compete to win tickets to LOLLAPALOOZA by seeing who could lick a real llama the longest. A llama. If watching people lick animals is your bag, go ahead and click here for some local TV coverage of the event, which was held in downtown GRAND RAPIDS.

 

Reprinted from the Sunday Oakland Press, August 13, 2006

By: Art Vuolo


On The Radio

Less than 10 days ago, a multitude of radio broadcasters shivered at the front-page story. It proclaimed automakers were about to integrate easy-to-use iPod docking stations into new 2007 model cars. Yikes! Using the old theory that people simply aren’t happy unless they have something to worry about, the death of radio has been predicted numerous times over the past 50 years or more.

Radio is turning 86 years old Nov. 2. While all-news WWJ-AM (950) took to the air Aug. 20, 1920, as experimental station 8MK, purists give the nod to Pittsburgh’s KDKA-AM (1020), which has been on the air continuously since Nov. 2, 1920. Interestingly the number 86 is often referred to as doing away with something no longer needed. Yikes again.

Radio’s biggest threat was television, and it’s still far from a friendly sibling. TV takes better than 80 percent of every ad dollar spent, even though its audience has been fragmented even more than radio’s. Many people still feel the only place they can listen to the radio is in their vehicles. However, that once sacred domain has been breached by cell phones, satellite radio, CD and DVD players, even GPS (Global Positioning Satellite) units, which keep us from getting lost.

Now, the iPod is out to kill off radio, which must fight for every listener. Former Detroit DJ Country Dan Dixon, now at XM’s classic country channel 10, offers some insight, calling the iPod “nothing more than a New Age cassette recorder.”

“I have tons of CDs and compilations I made myself but don’t listen to them much anymore,” he says. “I happen to like entertainment! And so do the people who subscribe to XM. “Music is important,” he adds, “but I believe that the reason people listen to me is because they want to feel like they’re part of my show. They feel like they’re a friend of mine, and they are! Most of the people who listen have been cooped up in their vehicles and want to be entertained. They love being able to call in or send an e-mail to the person who is visiting with them on their radio. Our wide music variety is important, but it’s the one-on-one communication that terrestrial radio has seemingly forgotten about. Many of my listeners have told me that they hardly ever listen to FM or AM anymore.”

Some claim that people will purchase a new car just because it’s “iPod ready.” If this is true, watch how fast our Big Three automakers react. In fact, they already have. On the flip side of the car radio coin, how are the folks in the HD radio camp going to deal with this as they also fight for dashboard space?

Despite all the gloom-anddoom reports, it’s doubtful radio is going to die anytime soon.


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On Tuesday, Buddy’s Pizza celebrated its 60th anniversary with the unveiling of its new “Wall of Fame” at its Farmington Hills location on Northwestern and Middlebelt. Owner Robert Jacob thought it was a way of honoring a host of loyal supporters from local radio, TV and other media. Some of the celebrities on hand included Rachael Hunter from country WYCD-FM (99.5), Cindy Canty from pop WMGC-FM (105.1) and Rachel Nevada of news-talk WJR-AM (760). From the TV side, both Diana Lewis and Don Shane from WXYZ Channel 7 were there, and Danny Raskin from The Jewish News made sure the pizza was kosher. Former Detroit Tiger Frank Tanana was on deck with an eye on one of the many TV screens watching his old team take on the Minnesota Twins.


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Set your dial: the big band music of Fletcher Henderson is being featured on Tom Wilson’s “Somewhere in Time” at 6 p.m. today on WMUZ-FM (103.5) at 6 p.m. And get ready this week for the Woodward Dream Cruise, because the best music will be on the radio.


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Art Vuolo has published the Radio Guide for more than 30 years and runs Vuolovideo.com.

 

Scott Westerman's Keener13.com has a wonderful tribute posted to the woman who changed the sound of Detroit radio forever with the launch of Keener 13 on October 31st, 1963. Mrs. Knorr was 89 years old when she died on August 10th due to injuries she sustained during a fall.

Keener13.com is collecting recollections of Mrs. Knorr via e-mail - check Keener13.com for details.

 

Detroit Free Press:

It's not hard to figure out that Robert Murrell is a radio enthusiast. Murrell, 51, of Berkley sometimes wears a blue shirt that features a pattern of antique radios. "The scary part is he can tell you about each radio on the shirt," said John Reinicke, who, like Murrell, belongs to the Michigan Antique Radio Club. Reinicke and Murrell used their personal collections of radios from as far back as the start of the 20th Century to put together a display of antiques at the Clinton-Macomb Public Library in Clinton Township.The radios are on display on the first floor at the Clinton-Macomb Public Library through Aug. 30. The library is at 40900 Romeo Plank Road in Clinton Township. It's open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday-Thursday; from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and closed on Sunday. The Michigan Antique Radio Club will also sponsor a show and sale on Nov. 4 in Kalamazoo at the Kalamazoo County Fairgrounds... Radio collection on display (Sun 8/13)


Chances are, if you've been watching the Detroit Tigers on FSN Detroit, you've witnessed some pretty shocking things. They include a woman charging into an expensive-looking painting at a gallery, like an outfielder crashing into a wall to make a catch; a man getting up from a business meeting to throw a piece of food through a window, like a pitcher making a throw, and a woman slapping another woman on the bottom as she drinks from a water fountain, just like members of a sports team sometimes congratulate each other... Getting into the spirit of the game: We're all Tigers (Mon 8/14)



AllAccess.com:

Maguire Named PD At WSSP/Milwaukee:
CLEAR CHANNEL Sports WTKA-A/ANN ARBOR PD RYAN MAGUIRE gets the nod as the new PD at ENTERCOM Talk WSSP-A/MILWAUKEE. MAGUIRE replaces the recently-departed CHIP RAMSEY. (Mon 8/14)



Smith to sub for Limbaugh

News-Talk WJR AM 760 morning host Paul W. Smith will sit in for syndicated commentator Rush Limbaugh this afternoon from noon-3pm. Smith has been a regular sub for Limbaugh the past couple of years.

 

Corp! Magazine and WWJ to collaborate

Michigan's business news readers will benefit from a new collaboration between Corp! magazine, Michigan's largest business magazine, and WWJ Newsradio 950, a CBS RADIO station. Your Biz, a free e-newsletter published every Tuesday by WWJ Newsradio 950, will feature content from Corp! magazine each month, as well as preview editorial for future issues. Corp! readers will receive a free subscription to Your Biz, which contains useful information and stories of interest to small business. The collaboration begins August 15, 2006... Corp! Publishing press release via Yahoo



Louisville Courier-Journal

Donovan Reynolds, who ran three public radio stations and a public television station at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, is the new president of the Public Radio Partnership in Louisville... Public radio partners name new president (Tue 8/15)

 

• The FCC has granted construction permits to Low Power TV stations WXSP-CA Ch. 15 Grand Rapids, WOGC-CA Ch. 25 Holland, WOHO-CA Ch. 33 Holland, and WOBC-CA Ch. 14 Battle Creek to change from analog to digital broadcasts using their same channels. WXSP, WOHO, and WOBC all will be afflilates of MyNetworkTV upon its launch next month and WOGC currently serves as a translator for NBC affiliate WOOD-TV 8 along the lakeshore. A similar application to switch WOMS-CA Ch. 29 Muskegon to digital is still pending. WOLP-CA Ch. 27 Grand Rapids and WOKZ-CA Ch. 50 Kalamazoo have not applied to switch to digital as of yet. These construction permits are good for 3 years.

 

Ohio Media Watch is reporting that Clear Channel-owned Country WWWW-FM 102.9 Ann Arbor, along with two co-owned stations in Battle Creek, are being swapped with Cumulus in a transaction that will move Rock WRQK FM in Canton, OH from Cumulus to Clear Channel.

It makes no sense for Cumulus to obtain only W4 Country in Ann Arbor - creating a stand-alone in the market. Michiguide speculates that the swap will not only include 102.9, but the entire Ann Arbor cluster- returning it to Cumulus, which sold what was then Rock WIQB 102.9, Oldies WQKL 107.1, Sports WTKA AM 1050 and Business News WYBN AM 1290 to Clear Channel back in 2000.

If this sale/swap does happen, and it appears likely, it explains the recent call letter changes at AM 1310 Detroit, which dropped its WDTW calls in favor of WWWW, and FM 102.9 Ann Arbor which became WWWW-FM in July after a brief switch to WFOR-FM from WWWW- which it took in October of 2000 after residing at FM 106.7 Detroit since the 1960s. Clear Channel obviously wants to keep control of those highly desirable calls in the Detroit market.

In the Battle Creek market, where Clear Channel owns Soft Rock WBXX-FM 95.3, Classic Rock WWKN-FM 104.9, News-Talk WBCK-AM 930, and Sports WBFN-AM 1400, Michiguide is guessing that the swap will include all four stations, not just two, and add to Cumulus' holdings in Battle Creek/Kalamazoo where it currently owns Top 40 WKFR-FM 103.3, Rock WRKR-FM 107.7, and News/Talk WKMI AM 1360.

If these transactions do occur, Clear Channel essentially will be divesting its stations in two of Michigan's smaller markets - what it gets in exchange in terms of market size will be interesting to learn.

Unfortuantely, the FCC's CDBS database system is currently unavailable and none of these transactions can be confirmed at the time of this posting.

 

Detroit News:

In this week of sheer, crazed, leaded-gas-fumed Cruise mania, the question arises: Where can you find the best Cruise soundtrack? WOMC-FM (104.3) 's jocks will be broadcasting live tonight and Friday night from Duggan's Irish Pub on Woodward Avenue, and at various locations up and down the avenue on Saturday. But the station will mostly be doing "you are there" reporting. For the music that will take you back to the '50s and '60s cruise era, you can tune in to WOMC-2 , its HD (high definition) channel, which goes back to '55 for its oldies, in an automated, nonjock format ... WCSX-FM (94.7) will be broadcasting live from Woodward tonight and Friday night and all day Saturday, playing classic rock cruising tunes. Steve Kostan will be on the air live tonight and Friday from 6-10 p.m., giving updates on the ongoing action out on Woodward... Local jocks pump out Dream Cruise jams (Thu 8/17)


TV judge Greg Mathis remembers what it's like to be poor and uninformed. When he was a kid growing up in Detroit's Herman Gardens projects, he thought college was a rich kid's dream. But after the military turned him down because of his criminal record, a cousin told him about Eastern Michigan University and a whole new world opened up for him. He earned his GED, enrolled at Eastern and went on to graduate and eventually became the youngest judge to be elected in Michigan... Judge Mathis reaches out (Thu 8/17)



Detroit Free Press:

Detroit's Fox-owned and operated WJBK-TV (Channel 2) was facing a Federal Communications Commission inquiry Wednesday over two alleged instances of airing corporate-produced "video news releases" without proper disclosure. VNRs are presentations that look like news stories but promote commercial brands and products. WJBK is one of 77 broadcasters the FCC is checking on. Two Washington-based nonprofit watchdog agencies -- Free Press (www.freepress.net and not affiliated with this newspaper) and Center for Media and Democracy (www.prwatch.org.) -- pursued the FCC action... WJBK stories studied (Thu 8/17)

 

Detroit Free Press:

If you win, they will show it. The Tigers announced Thursday that Channel 20 in Detroit would televise three more games in the final weeks of the season. The games: Sept. 17 against Baltimore, 1:05 p.m.; Sept. 24 at Kansas City, 2:10 p.m.; and Sept. 30 against Kansas City, 7:05 p.m... More Tigers games to be televised (Thu 8/17)



Observer & Eccentric:

If you've listened to rock and roll radio in the Detroit area any time during the past 30-some years, chances are you know her voice and her name. After all, through a twist of a dial or the flip of a switch, she's been invited into countless homes and cars and businesses throughout the metropolitan Detroit area since the early 1970s — keeping company with listeners at home or work, making commutes a bit more tolerable, and featuring the background sounds at parties and other events. Yet despite her longevity in the Detroit music scene, disc jockey Karen Savelly of classic rock radio station 94.7 WCSX brushes off the notion that she's a radio legend... Still rockin' after all these years (Thu 8/17)

 

Flint Journal:

Those blue-out blues will start to go away next month for Comcast subscribers. The new My 5 TV cable-only station, part of Fox's start-up My TV Network, will replace Detroit NBC affiliate WDIV on Comcast's channel lineup beginning Sept. 5. It will air on WDIV's channel 4 slot. That means WNEM, which owns the new My 5 TV, will occupy channels 4 and 5 on the Comcast dial. The new My TV Network will offer 12 hours of programming per week. Most of its shows are short soap operas... All kinds of changes are in store for Comcast customers (Fri 8/18)



Saginaw News:

A once-familiar face on Delta College's public television station has won a prestigious state award. Ruby Iwamasa, who retired from Channel 19/35, WDCQ, in 2003, received the Pioneer Award from the Michigan Association of Public Broadcasters. It honors the state's public broadcasting pioneers for their innovative contributions to the industry... Longtime public TV supporter honored (Sat 8/12)

 

Grand Rapids Press:

It's a special father-son outing for Jeff and Kevin Striegle whenever they're able to spend time together at Berlin Raceway in Marne. Jeff Striegle, 46, is in his 10th summer handling the play-by-play on racing broadcasts from Berlin for WMUS-FM (106.9) and ninth as a national broadcaster for Motor Racing Network... (Sat 8/19)



Battle Creek Enquirer:

Clear Channel Battle Creek Market Manager Michael Klein will be on the radio this morning to field questions from listeners about the AM 1400 format switch from oldies music to sports talk. Klein will appear starting at 9 a.m. on the “Open Line Friday” show on 930 AM WBCK. The show invites listeners to call in and speak on the air. Klein said he is appearing on the show in hopes of explaining the reasons for the change on AM 1400. The change was made Aug. 1 from WRCC “The Music of Your Life,” which played music from the 1940s, ‘50s and ‘60s, to WBFN “The Fan,” which features sports talk all day... Clear Channel rep. to answer questions about AM 1400 switch (Fri 8/18)

 

Reprinted from the Sunday Oakland Press, August 20, 2006

By: Mike Austerman


On The Radio

Nellie Knorr, who led the launch of Keener 13 WKNR-AM (1310) on Oct. 31, 1963, recently passed away at age 89. As the owner of WKNR, Knorr had the vision to launch the revolutionary sound of 1960s radio in Detroit and helped shape what you hear on radio even today. It was under Knorr’s watch that a young Dick Purtan arrived at Keener 13 in 1965. And you can still hear a take-off of Keener’s “Music Power” jingle every day on XM Radio’s “’60s on 6” channel. It became crystal clear just how much influence Knorr had on Detroit radio at last year’s big Radio Reunion, where she was the guest of honor. Her introduction and the standing ovation that followed were enough to send chills down the spine of even those that are just a tad too young to remember Keener in its heyday. The love that was shown to Knorr that night was unmistakable, as was her influence on Motown radio history. Be sure to visit www.keener13.com for much more on Knorr and Keener13.


 * * * * 


You’re going to be hearing more and more about digital radio in the days and months to come. Most local FM stations already offer digital broadcasts, witnessed by the countless promotions you hear for HD radio on a good number of stations up and down the FM dial. The upside, if you happen to own an HD radio, is nearly CD-quality sound and the capability to hear not only the main station, but also any secondary programming that is offered. The downside is extra interference on the band; it’s much tougher to hear stations from neighboring cities such as country WWWW-FM (102.9) and Top 40 WIOG-FM (102.5) with HD turned on at urban WHTD-FM (102.7).

On the AM band, the story is quite different. The interference factor is much higher, so much so that AM stations have to cease their digital broadcasts at sundown for fear of causing too much interference to distant stations. Also, many listeners notice a difference in the sound of their favorite AM station in the daytime when they are broadcasting in digital. Unfortunately, the vast majority of these listeners are still listening on analog radios and the difference is that the station’s audio quality has been noticeably decreased.

News-talk WJR-AM (760) recently dropped AM stereo, a requirement to use the most common type of digital broadcast equipment, and to my ears, WJR’s audio has sounded terrible ever since. The audio is softer and more muddled and actually causes me fatigue. I’m sure there are some tweaks that can be made, but it seems like sacrificing audio quality for a minority of listeners is a questionable move.

Another example came via e-mail. A listener reports that ever since religious WRDT-AM (560) started broadcasting in digital, picking up easy-listening CKWW-AM (580) has become nearly impossible south of Detroit.

It seems like there needs to be some serious reconsideration given to the idea of digital radio on AM before it drives even more listeners away from the band.


 * * * * 


As Art Vuolo reported in this space several weeks ago, talk AM 1310 mysteriously changed its call sign from WDTW to WWWW in July, but it has continued to run its progressive talk format identifying itself as 1310 WDTW. It looks like the move to change the call sign was to keep those famous W4 call letters under the control of owner Clear Channel, as an announcement is expected that the current four-station group of stations owned by CC in Ann Arbor has been moved to Cumulus as part of a large deal between the two companies.

Ironically, country WWWW-FM, adult alternative WQKL-FM (107.1), sports WTKA-AM (1050), and talk WLBY-AM (1290) were sold by Cumulus to Clear Channel back in 2000, and after the sale was completed, Clear Channel moved the WWWW calls to FM 102.9 from 106.7 Detroit, where they had resided since the 1960s. Will Clear Channel also retain the rights to the name W4 Country?


 * * * * 


Fred Jacobs, founder of Southfield-based Jacobs Media Consulting and creator of the classic rock format, recently was inducted into the Michigan Association of Broadcasters Hall of Fame. “I’m truly honored by this acceptance into the Hall of Fame, joining other broadcasting luminaries from Michigan,” Jacobs commented. “I’m proud to be a part of such a vibrant entertainment community. Michigan has led the way in developing some of the greatest minds and legendary talent in the broadcasting industry. When I travel around the country to visit our clients, I’m amazed by the array of talent that began in our state.”


 * * * * 


Set your dials: Hosts Tom Wilson and Alison Harris serve up a program of World War II tunes and old-time Campbell’s Soup ads on today’s edition of Somewhere in Time at 6pm on WMUZ-FM (103.5).


 * * * * 


Columnist Mike Austerman has covered radio for The Oakland Press since 2001.

 

Detroit Free Press:

My, my, my ... My Network TV generation. No, it doesn't quite have the Who's snappy rock 'n' roll revolution zing. But the minds behind the offbeat new network experiment, those sly-as-a-Fox folks at Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. media behemoth, aren't reinventing the entertainment wheel. They're just giving it a new escapist spin with a female-appeal eye-candy plan... Brand-new My Network TV channel revamps telenovelas for hours and hours of over-the-top soap operas (Sun 8/20)



AllAccess.com

Citadel Wants To Renegotiate ABC Deal:
The WALL STREET JOURNAL is reporting that CITADEL is trying to renegotiate the deal to buy ABC RADIO's stations and networks due to CITADEL's stock price decline. CITADEL's stock has fallen 27% since the purchase was announced, a slide that could trigger a larger payment to ABC parent THE WALT DISNEY CO. The paper says that CITADEL is seeking to change terms of financing for the purchase but that negotiations have not yet begun. In an interview, CITADEL CEO FARID SULEMAN said that the problems have arisen because "the performance of the ABC stations is not where it was expected to be. Some of the financing commitments have to be redone." (Mon 8/21)


WDVD Names Brent Carey For Weekends:
ABC RADIO Hot AC WDVD/DETROIT OM/PD RON HARRELL picks up former WTWR (TOWER 98)/TOLEDO air talent BRENT CAREY for weekend/swing duties. (Mon 8/21)

 

Detroit Free Press:

It was nice while it lasted. CBS-owned country station WYCD-FM's stay at the top of the Detroit radio ratings lasted but a month as Clear Channel-owned WDTW-FM (106.7), new to the country format, took a big chunk of 99.5's country listeners. In the Arbitrend report card released Tuesday, WYCD lost 0.7 of a ratings point (percentage of listeners) in May, June and July and dropped from first to seventh in rank from the April-June period. WDTW was up 0.8 and tied for 17th place; it switched to country May 26... WYCD slips from No. 1 to No. 7, splits country fans with WDTW (Wed 8/23)



Detroit News:

When music fans' tastes fluxed in the cultural tide of the early 1960s, many radio stations revamped their formats to be better attuned -- and Nellie Marie Knorr ensured that Metro Detroit was on a similar frequency. As president of Knorr Broadcasting Corp. in Detroit, the widow oversaw the transformation of the group's flagship station, then known as WKHM... Radio station owner led '60s music revolution in Detroit (Wed 8/23)



AllAccess.com:

Deminski and Doyle Celebrate 7 Years At Live 97.1 Free FM/Detroit
Congratulations to JEFF DEMINSKI and BILL DOYLE on their seventh anniversary in afternoon drive at CBS Talk WKRK (LIVE 97.1 FREE FM)/DETROIT. DEMINSKI and DOYLE arrived at WKRK in AUGUST 1999 after several years in the same slot at Talk WKXW (NEW JERSEY 101.5)/TRENTON. It is believed that only phone screener (and MINDCANDY lead singer) RUDY DESANTIS has been at WKRK longer than DEMINSKI and DOYLE. (Wed 8/23)

 

• The FCC has approved the sale of LPTV station WUHQ-LP Channel 29 Grand Rapids from P&P Cable Holdings to Equity Broadcasting

 

Detroit News:

Quick, when's the last time you bought a tabletop radio for the house? In this decade? During the disco era? When Glenn Miller was still alive? Go to a big-box store and ask where the tabletop radios are and it's as if you asked where they keep the Hula-Hoops. That might change this holiday season, if the HD Digital Radio Alliance has its way. The Alliance, a consortium of most of the big radio chains (CBS, Clear Channel, Entercom, Greater Media and nine others) is promoting the HD or high-definition technology that allows listeners to tune in to more than just the "free" AM/FM dial, offering about a dozen new "multicast" stations in each major market... More HD radios in stores for holidays (Thu 8/24)



Detroit Free Press:

Prime-time schedules grab much of the glitz, but it is the daytime schedules of TV stations that build an audience through the day and, most importantly, help provide an attractive environment for local advertisers outside of newscasts. All the new shows will debut next month and be in permanent place by Sept. 18... Daytime television's fall lineup (Thu 8/24)

 

CMU students win Bayliss radio scholarships

Two students from Central Michigan University's School of Broadcast and Cinematic Arts have been selected to receive competitive national scholarships from The John Bayliss Broadcast Foundation.

Senior Bryan Carr of Gaylord and junior Harrison "Harry" Van Dort of Zeeland are among 14 undergraduate and graduate students nationwide to receive $5,000 Bayliss Radio Scholarships. CMU is one of only two institutions to have more than one scholarship recipient in 2006.

"BCA is the only program nationally to have multiple Bayliss Scholarship winners two years in a row," said School of Broadcast and Cinematic Arts Director Peter Orlik. "This is a testament to the character and hard work of the students in our program and the dedication of the faculty in honing their skills."

In an e-mail message to Orlik, Bayliss Foundation Executive Director Kit Hunter Franke praised the caliber of the scholarship recipients throughout the program's 21-year history.

"Since 1985, over 300 exceptional candidates have been selected to become Bayliss Broadcasters, our radio scholarship recipients," wrote Hunter Franke. "These ambitious students were selected to receive the Bayliss Radio Scholarship because of their academic achievement and extracurricular radio activities, their passion for radio, and their desire to contribute to the overall advancement of the radio industry."

The John Bayliss Broadcast Foundation was created in 1985 in memory of radio executive John Bayliss. The foundation awards up to 15 Bayliss Radio Scholarships annually. The highly competitive scholarship is given to junior, senior or graduate-level college students who have maintained a grade point average of 3.0 or better and are preparing for a career in radio.



AllAccess.com:

Roman Returns To Radio At WWCK-A/Flint
Veteran radio programmer JOHN ROMAN returns to the PD wars as PD and 3-7p afternoon host at CUMULUS Talk WWCK-A (SUPER TALK 1570)/FLINT, MI. ROMAN most recently hosted "MORNING IN AMERICA" on the PEOPLES RADIO NETWORK in the early 90's and previously programmed KZZB/BEAUMONT, WKXW (KIX 101 1/2)/TRENTON, and WMNX/TALLAHASSEE. "Thanks to JOE MULE, JEFF WADE, and JOHN DICKEY, who remembered me from TALLAHASSEE and hired me anyway," ROMAN joked to ALL ACCESS. Also at WWCK-A, former WFBE/FLINT morning show member RUSTY THOMAS joins as ROMAN's afternoon producer. (Wed 8/23)

 

Reprinted from the Sunday Oakland Press, August 27, 2006

By: Art Vuolo


On The Radio

Holy cow! Could it be that one week from today Michigan and MSU will have already played their first football games? Where did the summer go?


 * * * * 


So much is going on that often I wonder who and what is running the radio industry. Well, we certainly know what, and that’s money. It’s the great equalizer, and the bottom line is greatly responsible for just about everything that happens across the dial. Now recent reports from Wall Street have the big-money people screaming for a merger between the two satellite radio companies.

I was an early supporter of both XM and Sirius because they offered a number of formats and music choices that are simply not available on terrestrial radio anymore. However, a plethora of articles with headlines including “The Bloom is off the Rose” have painted a rather depressing picture for this new technology.

In a related story, General Motors recently announced that the price of XM in a new vehicle has just been lowered from $325 to $199. The price of after-market (i.e., install it yourself) XM radios also is tumbling. The same thing is happening in the Sirius camp. The sat-casters are learning that the money is made not from the shaver, but from the blades. And one of their biggest problems is getting car dealers to explain what satellite radio is and how to activate the service. Knowledge is power.


 * * * * 


Last week, Mike Austerman passed along the sad news about the death of former WKNR owner Nellie Knorr. A memorial service has been scheduled for Sept. 9. Mark your calendars if you were a Keener 13 fan. Details will follow.


 * * * * 


As I alluded to, don’t forget that next Saturday, the Spartans of Michigan State will play Idaho on their new flagship station, news-talk WJR-AM (760), while the Michigan Wolverines take on Vanderbilt at their new stations, classic top 40 WOMC-FM (104.3) and talk CKLW-AM (800).

Speaking of college football, Steve Courtney has handed over his tailgate party microphone to fellow WJR stablemate Warren Pierce. You may recall Pierce was the football side-line reporter at the Big House in Ann Arbor for several years on the U-M broadcasts. Now that the Spartans are on WJR, Pierce will have to trade in his maize-and-blue outfits for ones featuring green and white. You’ll find Warren with an all new broadcast set up in East Lansing next Saturday.

We’re not sure what to expect out in Ann Arbor.


 * * * * 


Kudos to WJR’s Paul W. Smith as his Golf Classic to benefit “Think Detroit PAL” netted an unbelievable $325,000 to help thousands of young people in the Detroit area with academics, athletics and leadership skills they wouldn’t have access to without these two great organizations (Think Detroit and the Police Athletic League (PAL) merged to become one). Paul W. is obviously proud and thankful for all of the hard work by his team and the generosity of his many sponsors, truly making a difference in so many lives.


 * * * * 


While we’re passing out compliments, let’s not overlook The Riff. Rock WRIF-FM (101.1) scored a record-breaking five nominations for the upcoming Radio & Records Industry Achievement Awards. The station is up for Active Rock Station of the Year in major markets, Tom Bender is up for General Manager of the Year in major markets, and Doug Podell is up for Program Director of the Year for rock radio. Up for best music director at a major market rock station is Mark Pennington, while morning yucksters Drew & Mike are up for top morning show.

Other Detroit nominations include smooth jazz WVMV-FM (98.7) with their program director Tom Sleeker, urban WJLB-FM (97.9) and urban/pop WMXD-FM (92.3) along with their PD Jamillah Muhammad. Also in the running are country WYCD-FM (99.5) with their programmer Tim Roberts and music director Ron Chatman, and topping it off is their morning show with Dr. Don, Rachael, Grunwald and Bob Schuman. Pop WDVD-FM (96.3) is up for an award, plus classic rock WCSX-FM (94.7) PD Bill Stedman and everyone’s favorite, Dick Purtan at WOMC.

So it looks like the Motor City will be well represented at the R&R Convention next month in Dallas.


 * * * * 


Set your dial: Tom Wilson has the true jazz stylings of Milton Cross at 6 p.m. today on WMUZ-FM (103.5).


 * * * * 


Art Vuolo has published the Radio Guide for more than 30 years and runs Vuolovideo.com.

 

Grand Rapids Press:

Clear Channel radio continues to be a dominant force in West Michigan. According to the Arbitron ratings spring book, WBCT-FM (93.7) took first, WOOD-AM (1300) was second and WSNX-FM (104.5) was third. Skip Essick, Clear Channel market manager, said the stations' success is due to employees and improved technology... Clear Channel scores in radio ratings (Mon 8/21)


In her Rockford High School yearbook only a few years back, she wrote: "It is my goal by 2010 to be on 'The Today Show.' " Quite a lofty ambition, for a 17-year-old from West Michigan to aspire to a big-market TV position. But now meteorologist Ginger Zee, of WOOD-TV (Channel 8), is one big step closer to her Big Apple aspirations. She's headed for the Windy City. On Tuesday, Zee signed with WMAQ-TV (Channel 5), the NBC-owned and -operated outlet in Chicago. She will be a weekend weathercaster there... TV8 weather talent heads to Chicago's WMAQ (Wed 8/23)


Imagine you are chief executive of a major retailer or cellular telephone company, and want to track the frequency and content of your competitor's radio advertisements. How do you do it? Until now, your options have been limited. You can have someone listen to the radio in each of the markets you want monitored... New company monitors radio spots (Thu 8/24)


It occurred to WOOD-TV 8 sports director Jack Doles he should consult with The Bos in preparation for the station's comprehensive coverage of high school football this fall. No, not that boss. He'll team up with preps reporter Jane Bos of The Grand Rapids Press to spotlight the top football matchups every Friday, beginning tonight, on the NBC affiliate's 6 p.m. sportscast. Bos, who has guided The Press' high school sports coverage for the past 18 years, will appear live with Doles, sharing her insights from the site of one of the biggest games in the area each week... Press' preps editor joins WOOD-TV coverage (Fri 8/25)


'The prompter is perfectly timed," television news anchor Amy Turner said. "I think we may want to change to a weather bumper at this time," meteorologist John Shaner added. "We're coming out on camera two," floor director Jason Hutton instructed during a rehearsal last week for the new morning show at WXMI-TV (Channel 17). Excitement is high at the Fox affiliate, which will debut the show at 6 a.m. Monday with Turner, a longtime reporter and weekend anchor, and Shaner, a meteorologist who joined the station last week... TV shows light up the morning in West Michigan, The morning lineup on TV in West Michigan, WOOD-TV dominates GR-area news ratings (Sun 8/27)

 

WQLR Kalamazoo flips

|

 

WQLR-FM 106.5 Kalamazoo has changed its longtime Adult Contemporary format and is now featuring Variety Hits. Positioning has changed to '106.5 The Q, guaranteed music variety from over four decades of rock 'n roll'. WQLR is owned by Midwest Communications, which acquired the station along with news/talk WKZO AM 590 and sports WQSN AM 1660 from Fairfield Broadcasting earlier this year.

 

Mason to join WGPR 107.5 for mornings?

Crain's Detroit Business reports today that John Mason might be close to returning to the Detroit airwaves on Adult Urban/Jazz WGPR-FM 107.5. The move would mark a return to morning radio for Mason, a timeslot he held for years on WJLB-FM 97.9 and then later WDMK when it was located at 102.7 FM. WDMK changed frequency to 105.9 when the station landed Tom Joyner in June 2005; Mason stayed with WDMK at 105.9 but moved to afternoon drive. His contract with WDMK expired earlier this summer.

Final details on the plan are still being worked out, but according to the article Mason could return to the air as soon as September 12th.

The Crain's piece also states Mason has constructed a $600,000 studio in downtown Detroit using his own funding and will attempt to market his show nationwide via a syndication deal with a twist- he'll be willing to pay for his air time. He's already close to reaching a deal to land a morning slot in the Flint market on WOWE-FM 98.9.

Back in the morning (Crain's subscription required; Mon 8/28)



WDET to welcome Democracy Now host Amy Goodman Sept. 22

Detroit Public Radio, WDET-FM 101.9, will present Amy Goodman in Detroit on Friday, September 22 at 7pm at the Hilberry Theatre on the campus of Wayne State University. Popular host of "Democracy Now!," heard on WDET weekdays at 11am, Goodman comes to Detroit with her new book co-written by her brother, David Goodman, titled, "Static: Government Liars, Media Cheerleaders, and the People Who Fight Back" (published by Hyperion and released September 5).

The event is also a fundraiser for Detroit Public Radio. For a gift of $150, donors receive a pair of Gold Circle Seats (first few rows), a copy of her new book and will attend a private catered reception with Goodman. Seating is very limited for this special opportunity. General admission seats are also available for $12.

All tickets are available only through WDET and may be purchased by calling 1-800-959-WDET or online at wdetfm.org.

 

New Smile FM station is on-air

WJOM FM 88.5 Eagle, located just west of the Lansing metro, has been reported as on-air this week simulcasting the Christian Contemporary format of WLGH FM 88.1 Leroy Township/Lansing. The new signal greatly increases Smile FM's coverage west of Lansing.



Williamston Enterprise/Lansing State Journal:

Mary Turner admits that working in the radio business is a shaky way to make a living. The 94.1 WVIC "Morning Rush" co-host laughs about always having her bags packed to leave at a moment's notice, but she hopes Lansing listeners will give her and fellow co-host Brad Walker a fair shake in the flooded mid-Michigan morning show market. Turner and Walker can both be heard mornings from 5:30 to 10:30 a.m., Monday through Friday... WVIC morning duo carving niche in radio (Sun 8/27)



Classic Rock 94.9 WMMQ's Morning Host Rich Michaels doesn't really care what you think of him. "I just try to be me," Michaels said from the studio, off Pine Tree Road in Lansing. For many who feel Michaels is too outspoken, he is unapologetic, and he said what you hear on the radio is honesty to its purest form. Michaels is hoping to light a fire, and hopefully, getting people to call in for a lively discussion. "I don't care if they disagree. If I'm wrong on a subject, hopefully, they will call in and enlighten me. People don't want to stake a claim in their own beliefs. Some have no idea or opinion on anything"... WMMQ's Rich Michaels keeps it light yet relevant (Sun 8/6)

 

Local college, pro football shows hit the field on FSN Detroit

Wolverines, Spartans, Lions Have Prominent Place in FSN Lineup

FSNThe arrival of the 2006 football season brings the usual bevy of shows to FSN Detroit, highlighting the Michigan Wolverines, Michigan State Spartans and Detroit Lions:

Fridays:
6:00 or 6:30 PM – One on One with John L. Smith: Mickey York's weekly visit with the Michigan State head coach. Premieres Fri. Sept. 1 – 6:00 PM.

10:30 or 11:30 PM – TGI Football: FSN Detroit's weekly half-hour table-setter for the big football weekend provides in-depth previews of games involving the Michigan Wolverines, Michigan State Spartans and Detroit Lions. Premieres Fri. Sept. 1 – 10:30 PM.


Saturdays:
8:30 AM – One on One with John L. Smith (replay)
9:00 AM – TGI Football (replay)


Sundays:
9:00 AM – Michigan Replay: The long-running show featuring Michigan football coach Lloyd Carr and co-host Jim Brandstatter. Show re-airs some weeks at 12:30 PM.

9:30 AM – Spartan Sports Zone: The MSU sports scene is featured each week with an emphasis on football in the fall, hosted by Dave Ellis. Show re-airs Thursdays at 6:30 PM.

Select Sundays – DSR: Lions Post Game Edition: Ten times this season, the DSR crew provides live coverage immediately following Lions games providing remarks from the podium, locker room reaction and expert analysis. Host is Mickey York, joined by analyst Rob Rubick and reporter Trevor Thompson. Premieres Sun. Sept. 10 following Lions-Seahawks season opener.


Mondays:
1:30 PM, LIVE & 7:00 PM (replay) – Lions Press Conference: Live coverage of Rod Marinelli's Monday session with the Detroit press corps, hosted by Matt Shepard. Premieres Mon. Sept. 11.



Detroit Free Press:

When last we heard about the WJLB-FM Official Station Car, the tricked-out Magnum had been stolen from Detroit's Osborn High School while afternoon drive host Bushman was there for career day. Well, on Tuesday, the Clear Channel-owned station rolled out a 2006 Chrysler 300... A new ride for Bushman (Wed 8/30)



Detroit News:

The Detroit Red Wings, FSN Detroit, WJBK FOX 2 and WXYT Team 1270 today announced the 2006-07 Red Wings television and radio broadcast schedules... Red Wings 2006-07 local broadcast schedule (Tue 8/29)

 

• Rock WZUU FM 92.3 Allegan has been granted a construction permit to change its community of license to Mattawan, move its broadcast tower into Kalamazoo County just west of the city of Kalamazoo, and increase its effective radiated power to 6,000 watts @ 322 feet from 860 watts @ 600 feet. The changes will effectively give WZUU full coverage over Kalamazoo which currently could be considered as a rimshot to the market. Sister station Oldies WQXC-FM 100.9 will change its community of license from Otsego to Allegan to maintain that community's "first radio service".

• Horizon Christian Fellowship is acquiring the construction permits for FM translators W227AS 93.3 Whitehall and W243BH 96.5 Muskegon for $6336 each from Radio Assist Ministry pending FCC approval and closing.

• Horizon Christian Fellowship is also acquiring the construction permits for FM translators W286AU 105.1 Allegan, W258AO 99.5 Hillsdale, W277BB 103.3 Grand Haven, W279BF 103.7 Hasings, and W237BW 95.3 Forest Hills from Edgewater Broadcasting for $7433 each pending FCC approval and closing.

 

Detroit News:

After Radio One's WDMK-FM (105.9) and John Mason came to a parting of the ways last month, one of the stations mentioned by insiders as a likely landing spot for the popular host and Pistons announcer was WGPR-FM (107.5). The back channel chatter was correct. Mason is in talks with the R&B station to return to the morning format he was king of for so long on WJLB-FM (97.9) ... Vaughn heads to Michigan Radio: Longtime WDET-FM (101.9) newshawk Jerome Vaughn has been snapped up by Ann Arbor's Michigan Radio to become its news director... Mason has landed on WGPR -- almost (Thu 8/31)



WDET FM programming notes

WDETWDET-FM 101.9, Detroit Public Radio, will be airing two jazz specials on Labor Day, Monday, September 4. From 7pm to 8pm, tune in for "The House That Trane Built," a documentary on the history of Impulse Records. This is followed by a four-hour (8pm to midnight) special, "Caliente!," hosted by Eddie Palmieri and Carlos Lando that explores the connections between Latin and American jazz. Special guests on "Caliente" include Monty Alexander, David Sanchez, Giovanni Hidalgo, Brian Lynch, Joe Locke and Conrad Herwig. The musical selections include many of Palmieri's original compositions as well as standards like "Tin Tin Deo" and "In Walked Bud!"


WDET's Ralph Valdez show at 10pm on Sunday, September 3rd will feature an interview with, and new sounds from, Satori Circus, a one man music and performance art project led by Russell Taylor. Satori Circus creatively combines theatre, music, poetry, film and more in the new work "Moses:39" premiering at Detroit's 1515 Broadway in September. Listeners will also have a chance to win tickets for an upcoming performance by legendary one man band Vinx in concert September 9 at The Ark in Ann Arbor. As always, other arts and culture information and a wide variety of "rummage sale records", music new and old, from around Detroit and around the world will also be explored.



Jazz on Orchard Lake Sep. 10

Smooth Jazz WVMV-FM 98.7 morning host Alexander Zonjic and special guests Ken Navarro and Thornetta Davis will close out the summer outdoor jazz festival season with a concert at “Jazz on the Lake” on Sunday, Sept. 10, 2 to 7 p.m. Opening the show will be Musica Mundi.

In addition to the music, a wine tasting featuring vintages from California, New Zealand, Australia, France and Chile, and a strolling supper offering cuisine from fine area restaurants are included in the ticket price. A cigar tent for cigar aficionados and a silent auction are also part of the event.

The 10th annual concert is a fundraiser for St. Mary's Preparatory School located on the banks of Orchard Lake, 3535 Indian Trail, Orchard Lake, 48324. A map and information are available on www.jazzonorchardlake.org. Tickets can be purchased on the website for $75 or at the gate on the day of the festival. Call (248) 432-2673 for more information.

 

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About this Archive

This page is a archive of recent entries written by Mike Austerman in August 2006.

Mike Austerman: July 2006 is the previous archive.

Mike Austerman: September 2006 is the next archive.

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