Metro Detroit: May 2010 Archives

WJR's Paul W. Smith on the road for annual tourism visits

News/Talk WJR AM 760 morning host Paul W. Smith kicked off his annual tour of Michigan vacation hotspots today with a stop in Monroe at Monroe Community College's La-Z-Boy Center Meyer Theatre. Future stops for the show's live broadcasts (5:30 - 9 a.m.) include:

The Marriott Hotel in Grand Rapids on Tuesday, the Ramada Plaza Ojibway Hotel in Sault Ste. Marie on Wednesday, The Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island on Thursday, and at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn on Friday.

As in years past, each broadcast will feature interviews with local business and government leaders in each city. More info is available at wjr.com.

 


 

FOX Sports Detroit moves tomorrow's Tigers game TV coverage

Due to a conflict with game three of the Detroit Red Wings / San Jose Sharks NHL playoff game, the May 4th Detroit Tigers/Minnesota Twins game has been shifted from FOX Sports Detroit to FOX Sports Detroit Plus. Visit foxsportsdetroit.com for channel information.

 

Ernie Harwell, Michigan's most beloved broadcaster ever, has died this evening at the age of 92 in his home in the Detroit suburb of Novi after an inspiring fight with bile duct cancer.

There will be countless accolades and articles written about the life of a man that cared for his family, friends, and fans in a way that no one ever has before or will again. Whatever it is that is written, it won't be enough to capture just how much Mr. Harwell meant to our state.

Godspeed Ernie and thank you.

 

 


 

Detroit Free Press:

In Ernie Harwell's voice, the South rose again and conquered Michigan in a way no one else ever has. When Harwell arrived in Detroit to join the Tigers radio broadcast team in 1960, he was an unknown to Tigers fans. When he died Tuesday night at his home in Novi, at 92, after nearly a year-long bout with cancer, he had a strong case as the most beloved figure ever in Michigan. He rose to that cherished place through the combined power of radio and baseball and just as importantly his own charm and warmth, which were as steady through the decades as his unchanging Georgia accent. Harwell did Tigers radio from 1960 through 1991, then -- after an ill-conceived dismissal by the Tigers that lasted only one season -- he did a combination of Tigers radio and TV from 1993 through 2002. He ended his 55-year big-league career at the end of 2002 season... Ernie Harwell dies at 92 (Tue, 5/4)

 

In a telephone interview tonight, Detroit Tigers legend Al Kaline was asked why Harwell was so overwhelmingly popular in Michigan. "There wasn't a nicer person," Kaline said. "He had time for everybody. He lived here and stayed here. He didn't just work here and then go away in the off-season. He would have young announcers up to his booth all the time and give them advice. He had time for everybody." Kaline worked as Harwell's broadcast partner on television in the 1990s... Dignitaries share warm memories of Ernie Harwell (Tue, 5/4)

 


 

Detroit News:

Ernie has died. After a battle against bile duct cancer, one he knew he would lose, Ernie Harwell died Tuesday. He was 92. With his death, Michigan -- and baseball -- loses one of its most beloved figures. For 55 years, Harwell was a major league broadcaster, 42 with the Tigers. He broadcast his last game Sept. 22, 2002. Instead of moving away from the Detroit area, he spent his final years in Novi, still being part of our lives as an author and corporate spokesman. William Earnest Harwell was born Jan. 25, 1918 in Washington, Ga. As a boy, his family moved to Atlanta, where he grew up loving newspapers and baseball, which is how and why he became a paperboy and a batboy for his hometown minor league club, the Atlanta Crackers... Legendary broadcaster Ernie Harwell dies at 92 (Tue, 5/4)

 


 

MLive.com

The voice that we fell asleep to while listening to baseball games on transistor radios, the one that called Detroit Tigers games for four decades and became part of our lives, has gone silent. Ernie Harwell died Tuesday of cancer. He was 92. Harwell was the 1981 recipient of the Ford C. Frick Award, placing him in the Hall of Fame at Cooperstown as a broadcaster. He said that his induction speech and the Christian testimony he gave at a Billy Graham Crusade in Tampa were the two most memorable speaking engagements of his life. He loved God, baseball, his family and countless friends. "When you met Ernie Harwell, you walked away feeling you were his best friend," said Tigers radio broadcaster Jim Price, who first met Harwell as a rookie catcher with Detroit in 1967. "People who never met him before would say, 'It's like I've known him forever.' "He was very unique that way." Harwell was a one-of-a-kind person and broadcaster, who had first-hand experiences with nearly every big name in the history of the game... Hall of Fame Tigers broadcaster Ernie Harwell dies at 92 after battle with cancer (Tue, 5/4)

 

WDVD extends Radiothon

Pop WDVD FM 96.3 has extended its Radiothon to benefit the Children's Miracle Network through 7 p.m. today, Friday May 7th. The event kicked off yesterday and is being broadcast live on WDVD from the south tower of Beaumont Hospital in Royal.

The 96.3 WDVD Cares For Kids Radiothon is being hosted by morning drive personalities Blaine and Allyson are working overtime towards building an unprecedented showing of generosity for the children of Southeast Michigan, truy to ensure every child has available to them the care they need.

100% of the donations that are collected will go to Michigan hospitals. Donations can be made by telephone at (866) 963-GIVE or online by Clicking Here.

Visit 963wdvd.com for more details, and multimedia content from the event.

 


 

FOX Sports Detroit to re-air Ernie Harwell Tribute several more times

Ernie Harwell: We'll Remember has been scheduled to air on the cable sports outlet at the following times this weekend:

  • Saturday, May 8 - 4:30 pm (after Tigers-Indians postgame coverage)
  • Sunday, May 9 - 4:00 pm (after Tigers-Indians game)
  • Tuesday, May 11 - 1:30 pm
  • Thursday, May 13 - 6:30 pm

In addition, FOX Sports Detroit will air portions of the tribute that is planned for Harwell prior to the Tigers' game against the New York Yankees at Comerica Park on Monday during it's Tigers Live pregame show beginning at 6:30 p.m.

 


 

Detroit Free Press:

As a tribute to the late Ernie Harwell, "a long moment of silence" will be observed Saturday afternoon during national broadcasts of baseball games on Fox. Fox Vice President of Communications Dan Bell, in an e-mail to Michael Rosenberg of the Free Press, explained that during the top of the third inning, Fox announcers "will tell the audience that we are doing this, and then just let each respective game play without commentary." Detroit-area viewers will see the Yankees-Red Sox game, while the Braves-Phillies game will be broadcast in certain other markets ... Locally, 97.1-FM (The Ticket) will rebroadcast Harwell's final game, from 2002, at 10 a.m. Saturday... Fox, 97.1 will honor Ernie on Saturday (Fri, 5/7)

 


 

Doug Podell steps down from programming responsibilities

Veteran, and extremely successful, rock programmer Doug Podell has made the decision to give up his responsibilities as PD for WCSX as well as Director of Rock Programming for Greater Media/Detroit. "After 30 years of programming some of the best Rock stations in America, I have decided to shift gears and focus on what I truly love -- being on the air," says Detroit native Podell. "After being off the air for a year and recently returning, I realized just how much I missed it and how my contributions are better suited for what's happening today."

Podell will continue to be heard weekdays on 'CSX from 2 - 6 p.m.

Prior to returning to the air on WCSX, he was PD for WRIF from 1994-2008 and also held that title at Cleveland's WNCX.

"Doug's contributions have been vital to the success and image of Rock in Detroit for more than 30 years," said John Gallagher, Greater Media/Detroit Market Manager. "We are very fortunate to have him as a valued member of the WCSX-FM airstaff."

 


 

Christian K-Love network expands into Metro Detroit

As had been previously announced, Educational Media Foundation has taken over the operations of the HD2 stream of WMXD FM 92.3 in Detroit and placed its Christian contemporary K-Love format on the digital-only outlet that is owned by Clear Channel. However, those with analog receivers can hear the programming on a series of FM translators licensed around metro Detroit including 105.5 Rochester Hills, 98.3/99.1/102.3 Detroit, and 106.3 Westland.

EMF obtained the rights to WMXD-HD2 via a swap of an FM translator in Minnesota. Prior to airing the K-Love format, WMXD-HD2 was airing a Gospel-based format and EMF's translators were simulcasting the formats of stations like WVMV 98.7 Detroit and WQUS 103.1 Lapeer.

 


 

Michigan public radio stations to present gubernatorial candidate forum

Michigan Radio (WUOM 91.7 Ann Arbor / WFUM 91.1 Flint / WVGR FM 104.1 Grand Rapids) is partnering with the League of Conservation Voters and the Detroit Free Press to host a bipartisan Gubernatorial Forum at Central Michigan University on Wednesday, May 12. The forum, in which gubernatorial candidates will discuss key issues facing Michigan's next governor, will be broadcast live on Michigan Radio and other public radio stations around the state, from 7 to 8 p.m.

The forum will focus on three major challenges the next governor must confront- rebuilding the state economy, creating jobs, and safeguarding Michigan's natural resources. The candidates will have an opportunity to address the critical connection between economic and environmental issues and discuss the best public policies for managing these high-stakes areas.

At this time, Republican businessman Rick Snyder and State Senator Tom George along with Democratic Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero and State Representative Alma Wheeler Smith (HD-54) have all agreed to participate in this forum.

The moderated, non-partisan forum will be broadcast live from 7-8 p.m. on Michigan Radio and many other public radio stations around the state, and also live-streamed over the internet at michiganradio.org. The event will be held at CMU's Plachta Auditorium, and it will be free and open to the public on a first-come basis.

The public is invited to submit questions in advance for the candidates, which may be used during the forum. That can be done at: www.michiganradio.org/forum.

 


 

New call sign for FM 98.7 Detroit

On Monday, top 40 Amp Radio (98.7) dropped the WVMV call sign that was associated with the station's previous smooth jazz format and replaced it with WDZH which obviously stands for.... nothing obvious!

 

The Oakland Press:

Nashville's flood victims will certainly be on the minds of attendees at the 2010 99.5 WYCD Downtown Hoedown this weekend in Detroit. It won't be far from their wallets, either. Throughout the free festival, which runs Friday-Sunday (May 14-16), the radio station will run a Nickels For Nashville campaign to raise money for the American Red Cross' relief efforts in Music City. Collection points will be located around Hart Plaza, while a large container on the Hoedown stage will keep a running tally of the donations. In a statement, WYCD Operations Manager/Program Director Tim Roberts explained that, "We've heard from countless artists that their homes are flooded, bands have lost their gear and obviously they aren't the only ones. So many families have been displaced because of this disaster. Even during all of this, the Nashville artists still remain fully committed to entertaining their loyal fans in Detroit... In turn, we wanted to do something special to rally behind them and support the relief effort"... Downtown Hoedown to collect money for Nashville flood victims (Mon, 5/10)

 

University of Michigan athletes and coaches to help conclude WTKA's Month of Mott

University of Michigan legends will take control of the Sports Talk 1050 WTKA airwaves on Friday, May 14th to conclude Sports Talk 1050 WTKA's "A Month of Mott" to raise funds for the C.S. Mott Children's Hospital and Women's Hospital.

Listeners are invited to join Sam Webb, Ira Weintraub and an amazing star-packed line up Friday, May 14th for the 2010 Radio-thon in support of the Charles Woodson Clinical Research Fund.

The WTKA in-studio/on-air guest line up is as follows:

  • 7 - 9 am- Lloyd Carr and Charles Woodson
  • 9 - 10 am- Jerry Hanlon
  • 10 - 11 am- Steve Hutchinson
  • 11 am - Noon- Gary Moeller
  • Noon - 1 pm- Brian Griese
  • 1 - 2 pm- Jake Long
  • 2 - 3 pm- Jeff Backus
  • 3 - 4 pm- Jerame Tuman and Aaron Shea
  • 4 - 5 pm- Mike Hart, Ron Bellamy and Drew Henson
  • 5 - 6 pm- David and Jan Brandon and Rich Rodriguez

Fans can call 1-800-559-2657 in from 7am-6pm on May 14th to make a donation. All contributions provided through the Radio-a-thon will benefit the Charles Woodson Clinical Research Fund. This fund aims to support and encourage ground-breaking innovations for new pediatric treatments and is critical to moving these initiatives from brilliant idea to viable therapies.

While any and all donations are accepted, radio-a-thon incentives include: $25 = "All in for Michigan, All in for Mott" t-shirt; $10/ month for a year = autographed Charles Woodson photo; $500 = 2 pre-game sideline passes to a UM Football game (Massachusetts, Bowling Green and Illinois).

 


 

Fox Sports Detroit to air today's Tigers/Yankees makeup game

Both games of today's split doubleheader between the Tigers and New York Yankees (1:00 & 7:00 pm) will be televised on FOX Sports Detroit / HD. Today's afternoon game is a makeup for a rainout last evening.

 

Detroit News:

Rumors that WXYZ-TV Channel 7 "Action News This Morning" co-host Erik Smith was leaving the station have been floating around for months, but the chatter reached a fever pitch this week. One story was that the veteran host, a 7 employee since 1962, was yanked from the morning show (which also features Alicia Smith , Dave Rexroth and Erin Nicole ), which prompted him to quit. Someone close to Smith affirmed to us that he's leaving, with his last day to be May 26, although the veteran host had not returned our call as of press time. When we queried WXYZ executive producer Sandy McPhee Thursday afternoon, she said: "Erik had a personal day off yesterday, but he was on the show this morning!" But isn't his last day May 26? McPhee replied, "We're still working on the details"... Society Confidential: Erik Smith, Channel 7 in talks over his departure (Fri, 5/14)

 


 

AllAccess.com:

CITADEL Hot AC WDVD (96.3 DVD)/DETROIT air talent DANA LUNDON has been promoted to become an official member of the BLAINE & ALLYSON MORNING SHOW. According to PD RON HARRELL, "MS. LUNDON has been filling the information role since late FEBRUARY and has proved to be a bright asset to the program. DANA has been one of our best utility players on the part-time staff capable of morphing into many different roles as jock, producer, remote talent and all-around solid radio junkie. We like her passion for the job and her love of radio." LUNDON's previous experience includes middays at crosstown WOMC and MD at WKQI... Dana Lundon Joins The WDVD Morning Show (Thu, 5/13)

 


 

Lions' preseason contests to all by in HD on WWJ-TV

The Detroit Lions and WWJ-TV have announced that all four of the team's 2010 preseason games will be broadcast in high-definition for the first time. The games are scheduled to include Saturday road matchups against the Pittsburgh Steelers on August 14th (7:30 p.m.) and Denver Broncos on August 21st (9:00 p.m.) and home contests versus the Cleveland Browns on Saturday August 28th (5:30 p.m.) and Thursday September 2nd (7:00 p.m.) against the Buffalo Bills. The two home games at Ford Field are subject to NFL blackout restrictions which would result in those games being aired on a time-delayed basis.

The switch to HD is a result of a partnership between WWJ-TV, the Detroit Lions, CBS Sports and local retailer ABC Warehouse.

"This is an exciting evolution in our partnership with the Detroit Lions," said WWJ-TV vice-president and general manager Trey Fabacher. "The NFL in high definition is great television!"

In the broadcast booth this year will be WWJ-TV Lions Pre-season veterans Matt Shepard doing play-by-play and the sideline team of Steve Courtney and Charlie Sanders. Joining the crew this season will be Michigan native Rob Rubick, the veteran color analyst who for more than eighteen years has been providing his experienced insight into broadcasts of football at all levels from high school through the pros. His unique background coupled with his experience as a tight end for the Lions will provide a solid addition to the broadcast team.

 

WJR and Forgotten Harvest to host Radiothon to help Metro Detroit Children

News-Talk WJR AM 760 and Forgotten Harvest have announced a one-day radiothon to benefit food rescue for children in Metro Detroit. On Wednesday, May 19, 2010, the station will feature interview segments with Forgotten Harvest from 6 a.m. on the Paul W. Smith Show through the Frank Beckmann Show, the Rush Limbaugh Show, the Sean Hannity Show and the Mitch Albom Show at 7 p.m. Listeners will be encouraged to donate to Forgotten Harvest, the region's only food rescue organization, by calling 1-888-332-7140. Additionally, the organization's website, www.forgottenharvest.org, will accept donations throughout the day and will be linked with wjr.com.

The radiothon is part of Forgotten Harvest's "Million Meal Challenge For Our Kids," which is raising funds to rescue and deliver fresh, nutritious food for children to eat during the upcoming summer vacation and other times when they would ordinarily be eating meals at school. Forgotten Harvest plans to raise enough funds to help feed 20,000 children per day.

"The latest reports show one in four children face hunger or food insecurity in our country. Every corner of Metro Detroit is affected by this crisis," said Susan Goodell, President and CEO of Forgotten Harvest. "This radiothon and partnership with WJR will help Forgotten Harvest expand our ability to rescue more fresh food and get it to children who otherwise would not have access to healthy meals when they're not in school."

Hosted by various WJR personalities throughout the day, the radiothon will feature interviews with Forgotten Harvest leadership to show the impact Forgotten Harvest has on the Metro Detroit children and their families. Every dollar raised in the telethon provides meals for five local children. Radiothon partner Busch's Fresh Food Market will challenge listeners to help Forgotten Harvest meet a matching goal of $25,000.

 

Forgotten Harvest was formed in 1990 to fight two problems: hunger and waste. Forgotten Harvest is on target to 'rescue' 19 million pounds of food this fiscal year by collecting surplus prepared and perishable food from 455 sources, including grocery stores, fruit and vegetable markets, restaurants, caterers, dairies, farmers, wholesale food distributors and other Health Department-approved sources. This donated food, which would otherwise go to waste, is delivered free-of-charge to 160 emergency food providers in the Metro Detroit area.

 


 

Michigan Radio to examine, contrast Detroit Public Schools

Detroit's education system is in the midst of a crisis. In a new series, "Rebuilding Detroit's Schools: A Tale of Two Cities," Michigan Radio (WUOM FM 91.7 Ann Arbor / WFUM FM 91.1 Flint / WVGR FM 104.1 Grand Rapids) will examine the current educational challenges in Detroit, and how the city can learn from the reform strategies being used in New Orleans schools. These reports will begin Monday, May 17, and air for two weeks.

The Detroit Public School district (DPS) consistently falls at the bottom in academic progress among America's large urban districts. New Orleans' education system was in a comparable state before Hurricane Katrina slammed into the Gulf Coast in August 2005. However, in the aftermath of the storm, New Orleans became a laboratory for change by necessity. School leaders began to reconsider the direction of the city's low-performing public school system and to take action to improve it.

Though Detroit hasn't suffered a physical calamity of Katrina's scale, the city has suffered through years of economic devastation. As Detroit works to recreate itself, some school officials are looking at using reform strategies implemented in New Orleans to tackle the similar hurdles that DPS faces. Michigan Radio reporters Jennifer Guerra and Sarah Hulett have spent weeks looking at the two cities' school systems and talking with students, parents, teachers, school administrators, and experts about their issues. Throughout "Rebuilding Detroit's Schools: A Tale of Two Cities," Michigan Radio will air reports from both cities, looking at the educational challenges Detroit faces as well as the reform strategies currently at work in New Orleans.

"Rebuilding Detroit's Schools: A Tale of Two Cities" will air on Michigan Radio during Morning Edition (M-F, at 5:20 a.m. and 7:20 a.m.) and All Things Considered (M-F, at 4:50 p.m.) the weeks of May 17-21 and 24-28.

The series will be accompanied by a special call-in show airing on Michigan Radio and WWNO Public Radio in New Orleans at 3 pm on May 25. Michigan Radio's Charity Nebbe will host "A Tale of Two Cities: Lessons the Motor City Can Learn From the Crescent City," a discussion about how reform in New Orleans has set an example for Detroit. More information about the call-in special and the series, as well as supplementary online resources, are available at twocities.michiganradio.org.

"Rebuilding Detroit's Schools: A Tale of Two Cities" is made possible by grants from The Kresge Foundation and The Skillman Foundation.

 


 

Detroit Free Press:

There were countless intriguing stories told and memories recounted during Michigan football's "takeover" of WTKA-AM during Friday's 7 a.m.-6 p.m. radio-a-thon. The event featured former U-M players and coaches, and it was another success, raising $66,000 to benefit the University of Michigan Mott Children's Hospital and specifically the Charles Woodson Clinical Research Fund. The most intriguing moment might have come in the final 10 minutes of the 11-hour event when U-M athletic director Dave Brandon and football coach Rich Rodriguez offered an incentive -- a fivesome of golf with them for a $3,000 contribution... U-M radio-a-thon raises $66,000 for hospital (Sat, 5/15)

 

An innocent 2007 contest held by Clear Channel's contemporary hits WKQI-FM 95.5's Mojo in the Morning show has captured the attention of the national press after it as realized that the winner of it's "Stripper 101" event was newly crowned Miss USA Rima Fakih. Photos of the event, attended by women only, have been posted on the station's web site since 2007 - but appear to be causing controversy for Miss Michigan / Miss USA Fakih even though she remained clothed throughout the contest.

 

MojointheMorning.com

TMZ.com

Detroit Free Press

Detroit News

Google

 

Detroit Free Press:

Mike Stone was announced today as the permanent co-host of "The Morning Show with Bill McAllister and Sara" from 5:30-10 a.m. on WXYT-FM (97.1). Stone returned to the Detroit airwaves on 97.1 in December as a regular contributor to the station, including as a morning-show fill in. "Mike Stone has been a tremendous asset to our station," program director Jimmy Powers said in a released statement. "Over the past couple of months, Stoney has demonstrated why he is such a great talent. ... The show will continue to grow as the chemistry between them continues to build"... Mike Stone gets permanent gig on 97.1 morning show (Mon, 5/17)

 

Detroit News:

Today CBS Detroit announced its long-anticipated replacement for radio legend Dick Purtan on the WOMC-FM (104.3) morning show: Bobby Mitchell, who currently hosts "The Saturday '80s Show" out of Dallas for the ABC Radio Network. Bob Schuman will handle news, and Rachel Nevada will do traffic and entertainment, as well as produce the show, which starts Monday. The station has also hired Chuck Gaidica, longtime WDIV-TV meteorologist, and will call the show "The Bobby Mitchell Show with Chuck Gaidica," to air 5-9 a.m. Monday through Friday, beginning May 24. "Bobby Mitchell is a seasoned pro who loves Detroit, and teaming him with Chuck Gaidica, Detroit TV's No. 1 personality, is a win-win venture for WOMC," Debbie Kenyon, market manager for CBS Radio Detroit, said in a statement. Tim Roberts, WOMC operations manager/program director, added that Detroiters can expect a "fun, friendly and topical local show" every morning... Bobby Mitchell to replace Dick Purtan on WOMC (Thu, 5/20)

 


 

Detroit Free Press:

The answer to who will be replacing Dick Purtan permanently has been answered: CBS Radio Detroit announced today that Bobby Mitchell will start Monday on WOMC-FM (104.3). The former Detroit WHYT-FM personality Mitchell, who will be leaving his KPLX-FM Dallas-based "The Saturday '80s Show," will join Chuck Gaidica in the Motor City for their "The Bobby Mitchell Show with Chuck Gaidica." It will air live weekdays from 5 a.m. to 9 a.m. and feature news by Bob Schuman, and Rachel Nevada will provide traffic and entertainment reports and produce the show. "I'm elated to be joining the CBS RADIO Team at the legendary WOMC, and I'm excited about the great ensemble of talent we've assembled for the show," Mitchell said in a statement released by WOMC today... Bobby Mitchell to replace Purtan on WOMC-FM (Thu, 5/20)

 

WADL Ch. 38 Detroit names Antoniotti as station manager

Steve Antoniotti, who currently serves as National Sales Director for Adell Broadcasting which broadcasts WADL TV-38 and WADL DT-2, will become the station manager at WADL TV-38 and WADL DT-2.

Antoniotti joined Adell Broadcasting in June 2008 and has been responsible for garnering national attention to the WADL TV-38 brand.

"I am confident that the wealth of broadcasting knowledge and experience Steve Antoniotti brings to WADL TV-38 will prove to be an attribute to our progressive broadcasting company," states Kevin Adell C.E.O. WADL TV-38 and The Word Network.

Antoniotti has an impressive resume which includes his tenure as General Manager WTVS-Channel 56, President and General Manager at WJBK, News Director in St. Louis, News Director at KNBC-TV in Los Angeles and KTVY-TV in Oklahoma City. His early television experience included work as executive producer at Detroit's ABC affiliate (WXYZ-TV) as well as a producer at both WJBK-TV and the NBC affiliates (WWJ-TV, which is now WDIV-TV) and extensive work in news departments in New York City.

"WADL is on a path of progress and it is the company's opinion that in Steve Antoniotti we have the most qualified person with a broad and successful track record to take the station to the level," states Lewis Gibbs, President WADL TV-38.

Antoniotti earned both his bachelor's and master's degrees in journalism from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.

 

column written by Art Vuolo, Jr.

On Monday, May 24th WOMC-FM (104.3) will premier it's new morning show. Ever since Dick Purtan did his last program on March 26th Chris Edmonds and Stacy Duford have been keeping the seat warm. My guess was that THEY would be the successor to Dick and Purtan's People. When I heard them the following Monday, I feared that my hunch was not going to pan out. Yet, I recall telling WOMC program director Tim Roberts that it was a brilliant move bringing them on board for weekend duty, so they'd be "in the house" to take over mornings when Mr. Purtan decided to retire. So much for second-guessing.

VuoloLet me say from the start...or almost the start, that I think Tim is one of the best PD's I've ever met and feel he will keep both of his stations (WOMC & WYCD) high in the local ratings. He and his crew did an incredible job with the recent Downtown Hoedown and this summer we can expect big things on August 21st at the Annual Woodward Dream Cruise. In fact, the huge Motor City Radio Reunion being planned for late September started with an idea from Tim Roberts! This is why I am somewhat perplexed by the new host of WOMC's morning show.

It's an interesting cast. I was happy to get a call from Dr. Don Carpenter of WYCD telling me the good news that ace news personality Bob Schuman was returning to Motown. He left a couple of years ago to anchor the morning news on 50,000 watt WOKV down in Jacksonville, FL but things didn't work out. After significantly increasing the ratings, they let him go. Go figure. So, Robert K. Schuman returns and he's the best! For weather, the TV personality with the most radio experience, WDIV-TV's Chuck Gaidica will handle the highs and lows and that's a good move because the Chuckster is the best! To produce the morning show and dilute the in-studio testosterone, Rachel Nevada will be segueing up to Fashionable Ferndale from the Golden Tower of the Fisher Building and WJR. She had been the longtime producer of The Mitch Albom Show. Good move. She has major name recognition and should bring much to the table.

MitchellThe big surprise came with the choice of the host of the show...Bobby Mitchell. Don't misunderstand me, Bobby is a great talent and for "radio geeks" (like myself) who have real good memories, Mitchell did his first tour of duty in Detroit at the old WHYT-FM (96.3) back in the mid-1980's under PD (now consultant) Gary Berkowitz. Oddly enough he worked with Bob Schuman who had also just come to Detroit. When Bobby left town he went to Houston, Miami and Dallas. Again, he's a very good jock with a great personality....BUT (there it is...the anticipated BUT) I do not understand why an "out-of-towner" was brought in when we have, not one or two, but three excellent morning show talents in town and all three are currently "available." They are: Jim (J.J.) Johnson formerly of WCSX, Chris Edmonds formerly of WNIC and Kevin O'Neill also formerly with WNIC. Each of these three has over a quarter of a century of tenure on the Detroit radio dial and have had good ratings and a large fan-base. Sadly, there is enough unemployed radio talent in this city to staff several entire radio stations. It just makes me ask, why are people being brought in from elsewhere? Just thinking out loud. How dangerous is that?

Art Vuolo Jr.

 

AllAccess.com:

GREATER MEDIA Classic Rock WCSX/DETROIT has named BRENT ALBERTS Program Director. He will officially begin his new duties on MONDAY, JUNE 7th. ALBERTS most recently served as Dir./Rock Programming at CITADEL BROADCASTING, where he was based out of the GRAND RAPIDS and LANSING markets. He also held programming jobs with LEE ABRAMS and the Superstars format, before going on to become a Classic Rock Specialist at KMYZ/TULSA. Prior to that, he did stints in MIAMI, JACKSONVILLE, ATLANTA, CHICAGO, MILWAUKEE, SEATTLE, DALLAS/FT WORTH, and NASHVILLE. "BRENT brings a wealth of Classic Rock experience to DETROIT, which has been and always will be a rock city." said Market Mgr. JOHN GALLAGHER. "We look forward to BRENT leading our team of veteran on-air personalities at DETROIT's exclusive home of Classic Rock. "I am very excited and honored with the opportunity of joining GREATER MEDIA and the legendary WCSX in DETROIT," said ALBERTS. "The staff is the best in the business. I look forward to helping them take this station to the next level"... WCSX/Detroit Names Brent Alberts As PD (Tue, 5/25)

 


 

Detroit Free Press:

For a kid growing up in Detroit in the 1960s, it was better than going to the circus or the zoo. That's how I remember my family's visits to the home of Ricky the Clown. Ricky -- born Irvin Romig -- died Sunday at age 90. It boggles the mind to think how many kids he made laugh in a lifetime of clowning. I was one of those kids, but luckier than most, because Irvin and my dad, Richard Panzenhagen, were best friends. They grew up under the same roof on Mt. Elliott in Detroit... Ricky the Clown made generations of kids laugh (Tue, 5/25)

 


 

Andrew Humphrey joins Local 4 News morning team

WDIV-TV Local 4 News has changed the assignments of two of its weather forecasters as the station has announced that Andrew Humphrey is joining the early morning team to bring metro Detroiters his up-to-the-minute forecasts. Andrew will join Rhonda Walker and Guy Gordon each weekday morning from 4:30 a.m. right through NBC's The Today Show. His weather forecasts will also be featured each weekday on Local 4 News at Noon.

"We're excited to have Andrew join our dynamic morning news team", said Deborah Collura, VP of News for WDIV and Post-Newsweek Stations, Inc. "We know metro Detroiters will appreciate waking up to his positive spirit and lifestyle forecasts to help plan their day."

Humphrey, a University of Michigan graduate, has been the weekend meteorologist on Local 4 News since 2002. He is proud to have earned the AMS Certified Broadcast Meteorologist distinction and a 2009 Emmy award for weather anchoring from the Michigan Chapter of NATAS. He has also received the 2006 Spirit of Detroit Award and a Community Service Award from the National Association of Black Journalists.

Former morning weather host Eric Braate will now handle weekend weather duties for WDIV.

 

Chris Edmonds joins WMGC-FM for afternoon drive

Ryan Seacrest is out and local is in at soft rock WMGC-FM 105.1 starting on Tuesday June 1st as Chris Edmonds signs on for afternoon drive (3 - 7pm). Edmonds was most recently heard at classic hits WOMC-FM hosting mornings on an interim basis following the retirement of Dick Purtan and hosting co-hosting a Sunday brunch show. Prior to the work at 'OMC, he was hosting mornings at soft rock WNIC-FM.

WOMC announced and launched a new morning program this past week.

 


 

ESPN.com:

The question comes up occasionally, lending credence to Dan Dickerson's call-it-like-I-see it approach. The guy has been the radio voice of the Detroit Tigers for only seven years, but people approach the mild-mannered Dickerson and ask when he'll deliver something he can truly call his own. Something that will stick to Dickerson the way phrases did to his predecessor, the late Hall of Fame broadcaster Ernie Harwell. Even after Dickerson became the Tigers' lead broadcaster in 2003, he resisted the urge to describe regular occurrences the way Harwell did by mentioning houses on the side of the road or pegging a hometown on fans who snared foul balls. "I just thought when you force it, it sounds forced," Dickerson says.It took Harwell -- who died May 4 at age 92 -- some 40 years to come up with his familiar "loooonnnngggg goonnnne" home run call that became part of Michigan's summer soundtrack. Dickerson chooses to keep things simple, occasionally peppering his broadcasts with his subtle, nuanced stylings rather than a forced shtick... Ernie Harwell inspires Dan Dickerson (Tue, 5/25)

 


 

Rob Davidek named as program director for WWJ AM

All-news WWJ AM 950 Detroit has promoted Rob Davidek to program director, a role he adds to his current responsibilities of news director. Davidek, who has been with WWJ in various roles since 1993, takes the spot vacated earlier this year by Georgeann Herbert.

Davidek commented, "It's an honor and privilege to be named PD for a heritage station like WWJ. I'm excited about what the future holds for not only Michigan, but also Michigan's only all-News radio station. We have a great staff, and I look forward to meeting the needs of the community as we begin our next 90 years of broadcasting."

 

WDIV tops competition in evening news ratings

WDIV's Local 4 News won at 5 p.m., 6 p.m. and 11 p.m., while Local 4 News: First at 4 p.m. and Inside Edition essentially tied with Oprah in the 4-5 p.m. time period during the May 2010 Nielsen ratings period for the Detroit television market. Local 4 News experienced a combined growth of 21 share points over May 2009 for the largest increase of any local station (compared to WXYZ's 8 share and WJBK's 5 share).

Local 4 News at 5 p.m. garnered a 7.2 household rating and a 17 share to win the 5-6 p.m. time period over WXYZ's 5.8 rating / 13 share and WJBK's 4.9 / 11. WDIV's 5 p.m. offering registered a growth of 20% in household ratings over the previous year.

In the 6-6:30 p.m. time period, Local 4 News at 6 p.m. finished #1 in household ratings scoring an 8.2 household rating and an 18 share (compared to WXYZ's 5.8 / 13 and WJBK's 4.1 / 9). In addition, Local 4 News at 6 p.m. won in the key demo market of adults ages 25-54 and tied in women ages 25-54. This signifies a 6% increase in share over the previous year.

Local 4 News at 11 p.m. enjoyed the highest ratings of news on any station, in any time period. In May 2010, Local 4 News at 11 p.m. garnered an 8.7 household rating and a 16 share (compared to WXYZ's 6.4 / 12, WJBK's 10pm 7.8 / 12, and WJBK's 11pm M-F 4.8 / 9). In addition, May ratings for Local 4 News at 11 p.m. topped the late newscast of all NBC affiliates in the top 10 markets nationwide.

In the 4-5 p.m. time period, Local 4 News: First at 4 p.m. and Inside Edition garnered a 5.1 household rating and a 13 share, nearly tying Oprah on WXYZ, which earned a 5.2 household rating and 14 share. Local 4 News: First at 4 p.m. and Inside Edition registered a growth of 58% in ratings of the key demo market of women ages 25-54 and 38% share over the previous year.

 


 

Detroit News:

Irv Romig loved clowning around to brighten a kid's day. For decades the longtime circus performer known as Ricky the Clown regaled young viewers throughout Metro Detroit on his own local TV show. And even through his 80s, he continued donning a wig, bright makeup, rubbery nose and colorful outfits for personal appearances. "He had an amazing transformation. Truly he became a different person," said Ed Golick, master of detroitkidshow.com, which profiles area children's programing from the 1950s and 1960s. "He put his heart and soul into his clowning. He lived and breathed being a clown." Mr. Romig died Sunday, May 23, 2010, after an illness. He was 90. Born Feb. 1, 1920, in Detroit, he grew up with parents who both performed in the circus. Performing through his teens, Mr. Romig later served in the Army as an infantryman and K-9 Corps dog trainer, according to Detroit News archives. Returning to the United States, he joined the Detroit Shrine and Ringling Brothers circuses as a rider and clown. He later appeared in the 1952 film "The Greatest Show on Earth," relatives said, and wed Rose Dobo, who became part of his act. In the early 1950s, he joined WXYZ-TV (Channel 7), eventually hosting a program as Ricky the Clown... Performer loved life as Ricky the Clown (Mon, 5/31)

 


 

Gary Post-Tribune:

Somewhere along the line, Andrew T. Melin, Valparaiso's next school superintendent, gave up on the idea of being a sportscaster. He worked in high school at WSDP-FM, a noncommercial student radio in Plymouth, Mich. In college, as he earned his degree at Michigan State University in telecommunications, he also worked at an East Lansing station that broadcast college games. "I worked in media many years," said Melin. One day, as he watched his boss be ripped away from a sports position he had held for 25 years, Melin became unsure of his chosen career path... Melin started out doing radio play-by-play (Sun, 5/30)

 

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About this Archive

This page is a archive of entries in the Metro Detroit category from May 2010.

Metro Detroit: April 2010 is the previous archive.

Metro Detroit: June 2010 is the next archive.

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